B+YND Spotlight: Meet Jess
Spotlight Series: follow along to get to know the ladies behind The GOOD Fest and a behind the scenes look at this whirlwind planning process that we love so much.
Hometown: NEPA, but I’ve been (mostly) in Philly since 2002
Current City: Philly. Tried NYC for 2 years, but ultimately decided Philly is for me!
Wellness Background: 10+ years of marketing and I finally realized I was telling people to buy-in to products I didn’t believe in. Studied with the Institute for Integrative Nutrition to become a health coach after drastically changing the way I took care of myself (was on the low-sugar, low-fat, low-calorie chain for years and the accompanying terrible digestion). Started my own practice Health Coach Philly and have been helping women find balance in our crazy lives, along with and understanding of food and our bodies. I’m also Certified in Plant-Based Cooking and Culinary Nutrition through Matthew Kenney Culinary and am currently an instructor with the school.
How I got HERE:
Part ONE: I met Jen while we were both working our last jobs (Animo was right behind the Comcast Center and I was in there every day lol) and we wanted to do something together. We didn’t know what – but we ended up starting plant-based pop up supper clubs and interactive plant based cooking classes throughout the city in January 2016.
Part TWO: I met Kate through Instagram (it wasn’t weird at all, though it sounds weird on paper…) and we then met IRL and again, wanted to do something together. (I like partners, can you tell? More fun!) We dreamt up the GOOD Festival and GOOD Society and THEN decided let’s just all join forces instead of trying to separate the offerings. Here we are. (side note: our Festival began as a “walking festival” for maybe, like, 50 people – where you would walk from studio to shop to juice bar. Well, with over 200 tickets sold to The GOOD Fest – we have clearly changed gears – haha!)
Wellness product I can't live without: Tongue Cleaner. Have you used this? Addicted. So is my husband. It removes all the mucusy-gunk from your tongue day and night. I can’t live without this thing!
Favorite healthy splurge: Vacations!!!! The total mind-body reset you get from unplugging for a week is UNREAL and so powerful.
Where you'll find me working out: I am a mommy now and mommy-hood has changed my 6-day-a-week workout routine. I now pretty much work out in my bedroom with some yoga or Tracy Anderson online workouts that I can find for free on YouTube.
Last book I read: Gabrielle Bernstein – The Universe Has your Back. In fact, I keep this in my purse at all times and read it chapter by chapter when I have free time. I write notes, underline, and mark the pages when I find things I love (there are a lot!).
"Cheat" food I would never give up: I don’t totally believe in “cheat foods” as I think you should allow yourself to have whatever you want within moderation! But I have pizza every Friday, and I’m currently also having a weekly donut – but I think this is just a phase…#balance.
Favorite item in my closet: My closet is literally full of only yoga clothes. I gave everything else to Goodwill when I left my full-time job. It’s so freeing to show up to meetings in black leggings. Damn. I did just buy a new top to wear “if John and I ever go out to dinner” (#momlife) – how funny is that? I have a top ready because I honestly wasn’t sure if I had anything to wear to dinner… OK but to answer the question: my black Nikes or black Vince slides. Wear one or the other every day. I have to replace the Nike’s every year – that’s how worn out they get. Thank you, Nordstrom Rack.
Advice I'd give my younger self: Don’t waste time on things you can’t change. I (try to) live by this beautiful quote: “If you can change something – why worry? If you can’t – why worry?” Put your energy into things you can actually impact. And stop wasting time wondering if you did something wrong or if so-and-so hates you. If you truly f-ed up – fix it and move on!