B.S.ACE CERTIFIED & NASM FITNESS NUTRITION SPECIALIZATION (FNS) CERTIFIED
Growing up I had a passion for health and fitness from a very young age. My mother is a registered dietician and I was pushed to be active as a child. I was a huge cardio bunny and loved running. In school, I participated in track and cross country. In 2013, I began to experience pain in my right hip and was told by a doctor that I was no longer able to run and would need to find other ways to workout. I began to read about lifting and started experiment in the gym with workouts that I made. Once I saw how quickly my body was changing I wanted to learn more so I hired a coach and he convinced me to prep for my first bikini competition. My first prep was relatively easy because I've always been a pretty clean eater and loved working hard in the gym. The enjoyment I had after stepping on stage gave me the desire to keep pushing my body to new limits. I began prepping for more shows and switched trainers so I could be a part of a competition team. This new trainer had me eating almost little to no fat, hardly any carbs and no veggies. Along with all that I was doing two hours of cardio a day with an additional two hours of lifting. I began to feel exhausted and moody all of the time. I knew this was a downhill battle and I wouldn't be able to continue it if it stayed this way. In desperation, I reached out to Amber Dawn Fokken with ADO fitness and began a new world of prep with her. Amber taught me how to utilize IIFYM and implement it with prep and I began to feel more energy than I had in months. I finally began to feel like myself and enjoyed prep again. I did the entirety of my building and cutting for my last show utilizing IIFYM and flexible dieting. I felt empowered and no longer binged because I was able to eat a variety of foods and I never felt deprived. I also came in better and fuller for my show than I ever had before and ended up taking first place! I’m super excited to help others find this empowering feeling and learn how to use flexible dieting and/or just a healthy way of living whether it be for prep or everyday life.
About Jennifer Binder
Bachelor in science
Ace CPT Certified
NASM Fitness Nutrition Certified
3rd Place Bikini Masters - Upper Midwest Fargo 2014
4th Place Bikini Open Class F - Upper Midwest Fargo 2014
1st Place Bikini Masters - Steel World Alabama 2014
Overall Bikini Masters Champion - Steel World Alabama 2014
2nd Place Bikini Open Class F - Steel World Alabama 2014
3rd Place Bikini Masters - NPC Tim Gardner Tampa 2014
3rd Place Bikini Open Class F - North Star Minnesota 2014
1st Place Bikini Open Class F - Upper Midwest Fargo 2014
2nd Place Bikini Open Tall Class - Branch Warren Classic Omaha 2015
Let me start by saying that I am not a fitness competitor, just a regular 38 (almost 39) year-old woman who simply likes to work out. Growing up, I was an active child, did sports in high school, began lifting weights before I entered college, and loved to run. I’ve kept at it my entire life, but over the last few years, I started to feel like my body was not responding as well as it used to and that changes were not coming as easily. I had ramped up my cardio to at least 60 minutes a day (longer on Saturdays when I would go for long 10-13 mile runs), and was lifting weights 5-6 days a week. I didn’t eat junk: I haven’t touched fast food or fried food in years. I’m mostly vegetarian and don’t eat gluten and a whole host of other things due to food allergies (yes, I’ve been tested by a doctor).
Needless to say, I thought I was doing everything right and was becoming frustrated that I seemed to be working out all the time and was still not where I wanted to be physically. One day, I decided things had to change; I had to do something different. After following Amber Dawn Orton on Instagram (@mishkadawn) for over a year, I finally reached out to inquire about her coaching through ADO Fitness. I was always impressed with the ADO way of approaching fitness. Amber would share the highs and lows, the good days and the struggles...plus her posts of all sorts of foods showed me she didn’t believe in depriving. As a hard- core foodie who loves to explore cuisines and enjoys well-prepared meals, I liked this! So I reached out...and I am so glad I did.
Amber set me up with one of her coaches, Jennifer Binder, who had a similar active background and was also on the taller side, like me. J After completing several very thorough intake forms on my nutrition, current workouts, and goals, Jennifer sent me my rst Workout and Macro plans. Right away, she identi ed that I was overtraining and actually eating into my own muscle stores. Who knew? Jennifer cut my cardio dramatically and increased my food intake (reverse dieting) which was completely foreign – and somewhat terrifying – for me.
The rst workouts were nothing too intimidating; they included several di erent types of weights and HIIT training than what I was doing, and in di erent combinations. I thought, “I can do this”! As for the Macro eating plans...well, those were new to me. I had taken several nutrition courses while in college, so I knew what macronutrients were, but I had never applied this style of eating (IIFYM) to my diet. It was a huge change at rst – I was way under-eating protein before and couldn’t gure out how to get all this extra protein in my diet – but I trusted Jennifer to lead me in the right direction.
I began meal planning and getting creative with alternative protein sources. It took a little getting used to, but I was determined to follow her plans.
Each week, after I sent Jennifer my progress pics, she would update my macro targets to get my body to respond. Let me say, Jennifer really knows what she’s doing! I’ve only lost about 4 pounds since I’ve started my ADO Fitness journey, but I’ve lost 2 inches o my waist, almost an inch o my thighs and I’m building in all the right places (the booty!). Plus, my body is noticeably di erent. Overall, I’m a lot leaner, tighter, toned, and dare I say, ripped! And as coaches go, Jennifer has been awesome! I’m not going to lie and say I haven’t had doubts or bad days; the reverse dieting phase can really play tricks on your mind when you see the scale, but Jennifer was always there to let me vent, to o er encouragement and words of wisdom. I am so glad I reached out that day and I’m extremely grateful for all that Jennifer has helped me to achieve so far. Through Jennifer’s coaching and guidance, this regular girl is seeing a whole new tter version of herself come through!
After months and months, Okay, more like a year of following Coach Jen and ADO Fitness on social media I finally decided to reach out to Amber and she put me in the hands of Jen. May of 2016 That’s when my life started to change.... we’re almost to the year and a half mark since I’ve began working with Coach Jen and during this time I have lost just over 50lbs. Took 1st place in my two bikini classes (competing was something I never planned on doing. Nor did I ever have a desire to do it) but, more than any of that, I have an amazing and healthy relationship with food. I have a confidence that I never knew was inside me. The girl who would avoid summer activities because she wouldn’t be caught dead in shorts, let alone a bikini, now can’t wait for summer activities! Jen changed my world. She literally saved me from self destruction with little knowledge about nutrition, meal timing and proper exercise. Who would have thought that doing a crap ton of cardio and hardly eating wouldn’t help you shed those pounds? Hmmm. I know this all sounds super cliche, but it’s the truth. Jen is beyond amazing. She is so acknowledgeable, caring, supportive, encouraging and honest. I couldn’t ask for a better coach and that’s why she is one of my best investments.
I found out about ADO Fitness—ironically—on an Instagram page that debunked fake fitness professionals. On one post, the administrator asked people to provide the names and handles of reputable and professional coaches that they’ve worked with. Of the dozen or so comments of names I saw, ADO caught my eye. I looked it up and contacted Amber. Amber set me up with Jennifer. I was a little fluffy from the holidays, and I wanted to look my best for an upcoming vacation. The previous summer, I had worked with a coach (who will remain unnamed), and I tried to use those same macros, but was not having any success.
When I started working with Jennifer, she told me my numbers were too low, that my metabolism had been messed up, and that in order to change my body composition and look my best this summer, I needed to eat more. Yeah, more.
I thought she was crazy, but figured that I paid for a 3-month commitment, so I may as well follow her advice for 3 months and if I didn’t like it, that’d be it.
I was eating so much food. I literally thought I was going to blow up. But my body started responding, and even though the scale didn’t change too much, my body composition radically transformed. Not only that, but I still had so much strength and energy at the gym.
We reversed up for a couple months and then began our “cut” about a few weeks before my trip. I say “cut,” because I was still eating more than I was when I started my program.
Finding ADO and working with Jennifer is probably the most sane thing I’ve ever done in the pursuit of a fitter body.
I never felt deprived, I ate a lot, and the whole process was healthy.
I would encourage everyone to take the leap. It sounds totally counterintuitive—to eat more and lose—but the payoff is great. You need to trust the process, and I promise you’ll probably enjoy it.
I have always been active in running, lifting, hiking and everything in between. However, I used my activity level to eat however I want. Deep down, I had never truly been happy with my physical appearance and wondered how I could be as active as I was and not look lean and in shape. I kept seeing Amber's instagram page pop up on my feed, along with a lot ADO clients, and I was drawn to her coaching style because she seemed to really place the overall health of her clients first. I finally caved and contacted her after seeing that ADO works with lifestyle clients, not just bodybuilding competitors! Little did I know that would change my life forever. Dramatic, I know, but with the help of ADO, I have changed my entire outlook on food and how I view my body. Amber set me up with Jen in May 2016 and during that time, she has taught me that in order to take care of my body I needed to fuel it properly. Who knew that with the amount of activity I was doing I actually wasn't eating enough or the right proportions of nutrients! It wasn't an easy process getting over the mental barrier of eating more to look better but I put my trust in Jen and she has helped me to conquer those fears. I have a newfound confidence in myself and love for my body no matter how it looks! As a bonus, I was able to get over my stage fright and pursued competing, which I had always admired in others but something I really never thought I could do! Two shows later, and I am hooked! Bodybuilding is an extreme, but I can wholeheartedly stand behind ADO for still placing my health first. Prepping for a bodybuilding show goes hand in hand with hunger but with the aid of flexible dieting, I never really did have any cravings during or after my shows because flexible dieting has allowed me to eat pretty much everything I wanted within reason. Jen also made sure to have a post-show plan in place in order to prevent the dreaded sudden weight gain that is all too common in the body building world associated with binge eating due to overly restrictive diets.
I honestly don't have enough good things to say about Jen and the rest of team ADO. Jen has been very quick to respond to my emails and texts, even with having a baby in the middle of my competition prep! She has been very supportive and encouraging while still being honest and objective. If you have ever considered hiring a nutrition coach, do not hesitate to contact ADO and ask all the questions you need to! Just because they are an internet-based coaching system does not mean there is lack of communication or support. I have been working with Jen for 18+ months now and not only have I changed my physique to one that I am proud of, I have learned to have more confidence in myself and love body in all of its stages. I also don't fear food like I used to and actually look forward to having Jen increase my intake each week!