Fit 4 Mom- Los Angeles

Helping moms make strides in fitness, motherhood and life

Meet Our Moms

Megan Velasco (aka Luke & Emma’s mommy) is one of our LA Striders!   It’s women like you who make Stroller Strides one of the best mommy & me activities in Los Angeles.  We love working out with you and your little ones.  Thank you for letting us get to know you!

 1. Who are the members of your family? Where are you from? My husband David and our children Luke & Emma. David is from Glendale and I am from San Diego.

2. What is or was your career? I used to be an occupational therapist. I worked with kids who had special needs in the school district. I loved my job!
3. How long have you been a member of Stroller Strides and what has it done for you? Gosh, I guess I’ve been a member for 18 months now. Wow. I can’t even believe that. I remember looking at the moms with older babies thinking, will my child ever be that big?  Now I’ve got two!
4. Other than Stroller Strides, what is your favorite thing to do with your child in L.A.?  LA has so many fun things to do and I can’t even limit it to one so I’m going to list my top 5.  Kids Space, Zimmer Museum, Peekaboo Playland in Eagle Rock, The LA Zoo, and hanging at The Grove and people watching.
5. What is something that has surprised you about motherhood?  Most surprising thing about motherhood is how easy it is to survive on such little sleep! I’m good to go if I get 5 or 6 hours. I never would have expected that, I loved to sleep (and sleep in) before kids.
6. Favorite quick & easy dinner that your family enjoys eating. Chili relleno casserole. Start with one large can of Ortega chilis. Open the chilis and place a layer down in a casserole dish. Layer with jack and cheddar cheese. Put another layer of chilis down and another layer of cheese. Mix 5 eggs, a dash of salt, one can of evaporated milk and two spoonfuls of flour with a blender until foamy. Pour over the top and bake at 375 for 30 mins. So yummy, guys love it, and no spice so good for kids too!
7. Favorite website(s)? I check these three websites every day: zulily, babysteals, babyhalfoff.  And Laylagrace is a good girls clothes site.
8. List three current obsessions. Kissing my new baby, seriously. I’m not kidding. Those toes! Planning my son’s birthday party, and trying to count calories to loose weight. Oh… And 50 shades 🙂
9. What is your child’s favorite thing about you or favorite thing that you do? Luke loves when I say, “Where’s Luke?” And pretend to look around for him like I don’t see him. And then I ‘get him.’ It makes me smile that he thinks I’m funny.
10. Finish this sentence:  Before I was a mother I swore I would never... Let myself go. I thought I would dress up, still wear heels, SHOWER EVERYDAY. All of those things are out the window.  So much for being a milf!  I wear clothes with throw up on them, smell like a trucker half the time, and flip flops are a staple.
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Swing Plank

DIRECTIONS: Get into a plank position on either the hands or the elbows. Whether this is performed on the hands or the elbows, make the contact point directly under the shoulder joint. Begin to cross one leg diagonally across the body then laterally out to the side. Repeat on the other side.


  •  Keep elbows slightly soft
  • Keep belly tight throughout movement
  • B R E A T H E


  • For wrist pain, perform on the elbows with the hips elevated slightly
  • For later in pregnancy, perform with a seated twist

*courtesy of Stroller Strides Corporate

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Meet Our Moms

Christina Brown (aka Charlee’s mommy) is one of our LA Striders!   It’s women like you who make Stroller Strides one of the best mommy & me activities in Los Angeles.  We love working out with you and Charlee.  Thank you for letting us get to know you!

Christina & Family

Christina, Travis & Charlee

1.Who are the members of your family? & Where are you from? Travis and I have a 13 month old named Charlee. I grew up in an all girl family. My parents were blessed with 4 girls. 🙂 We grew up in Filer, Idaho, population approximately 2,000. Very small town but I wouldn’t change it for anything. I love taking Travis and Charlee back there to see where I grew up!

2. What is or was your career?  I used to work in production for commercials. It was amazing and I was able to take away so many great experiences and memories. It would be really hard to go back to work. Not only because I have so much of an attachment to Charlee, but because the hours of working are so crazy and I would never get to see her or Travis. So my career is now being a mommy, the lowest paid, but most rewarding job.
3. How long have you been a member of Stroller Strides and what has it done for you?  I have been a member for 6 months.  I moved to LA almost 2 years ago. Being that I did not grow up here, I knew no one. Finding a group of friends or even some sense of community is a little harder when you are in a new place. With stroller strides, not only am I able to stay active, but I have a group of women that I can talk to. You can’t talk about teething and getting a glass of wine to just anyone. I also love the Mom’s Night Outs and activities and playgroups we have for the kids. The support of SS is amazing. That in it self is priceless.
4. Other than Stroller Strides, what is your favorite thing to do with your child in L.A.? Travis and I love to take Charlee to the beach. She loves the water and can’t get enough of the waves! But I do have to add, our next favorite thing is taking her on our searches for new restaurants all over LA.  We are big foodies, so the fact that she will try anything makes it that much more fun!
5. What is something that has surprised you about motherhood?  The biggest thing that has surprised me is how much

Charlee first bday


my maternal instinct kicked in. It’s almost like I am a “mom” about everything, but I can’t help it. I’m sure a lot of moms can relate to that. I just didn’t think I would have such a strong mom arm seat belt.

6. Favorite quick & easy dinner that your family enjoys eating.  We love eating spaghetti with bow tie noodles. Technically meat sauce with noodles. Travis and I like it spicy, so we add the spicy rotel tomatoes in after we take a portion out for Charlee. She loves it, and if we let her, she would probably eat it every meal.
 7. Favorite websites:, great educational website for Charlee. She is obsessed…constantly wants to play it on my phone, but I don’t mind because it helps her learn her alphabet and numbers.  Facebook of course. It helps me stay connected with my sisters who are all in different states. We are all very close, so to be able to see pictures keeps us that much closer.
8. List three current obsessions.
  • 2012 Olympics. I can’t WAIT until July 27th. The Summer Olympics are my favorite, so every 4 years I am glued to the TV or the Internet obsessing about sports.
  • Boresha Skinny Coffee. Fat burning coffee! No crazy things in it, just coffee! Can’t beat that 🙂
  • Disneyland. I want to go once or twice a week. Pretty convenient when you have an annual pass and a 1 year old.

Travis & Christina

9. What is your child’s favorite thing about you or favorite thing that you do?

Charlee has never mentioned this to me, BUT 🙂 I think she loves that we play with each other like best friends. We always have so much fun dancing and playing with her babies together. Her face lights up, so that is why I know she loves it. I am also hoping that she loves that I love her as much as I do 🙂 Any mom can relate to this when I say “the love for your child is so great that it can’t be explained.” That being said, I can’t hug or kiss her enough!

10. Finish this sentence  “Before I was a mother I swore I would never…call my child by my dog’s name.”   


Healthy To The Core

By Jennifer Smigelski of WELLthy Families

Core health is something I’m passionate about and for good reason. In fact, I gave a talk about this very topic at Yoga Center in San Luis Obispo earlier this month (see my photo from the workshop!). Why is this an important topic? Your core is the cornerstone of your health and wellbeing.

First, let’s get clear on what I mean by “core.” It is the part of your body spanning from your hips all the way up to your shoulders. That’s a huge area of your body and a lot of important things happen in there every day.

The muscles in your core provide power, stability and support to the rest of your body, from your arms and legs to your lungs and your brain. The average person uses those muscles constantly without thinking to bend, sit, twist, reach and more. The average parent uses those muscles even more – picking up and putting your child down, hauling a family’s load of groceries, lifting your child into carseats, strollers and shopping carts, bending down to pick up lost or cast aside items and much much more! The core is also where digestion takes place and your vitamins and minerals are absorbed. If something goes awry, you could end up with vitamin deficiencies at the minimum, gastrointestinal woes, or at the worst, disease.

Jennifer speaking at Yoga Centre in San Luis Obispo

One aspect of your core which many people routinely forget is your mind-body connection. Our body’s many parts are connected in a way that’s more sophisticated than we can imagine. For example, the gut has more neurotransmitters than the brain! That explains so many things, from having “butterflies” in your stomach to the phrase “gut instinct.”

To learn more about how core health plays a vital role in your health and wellbeing, as well as how you can get a healthy and keep a healthy core, join Jennifer on Friday, July 27th when she speaks with the moms of  Stroller Strides Los Angeles.  Healthy snacks & drinks will served.

Healthy to the Core

Friday, July 27th

8:30 Core Workout    9:30 Discussion

The Grove

Meet us by the fountain.


Jennifer Smigelski is the founder and director of WELLthy Families. A Certified Holistic Health Coach (CHHC) through the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and the American Association of Drugless Practitioners, she has spent over 10 years studying various wellness disciplines. Prior to founding WELLthy Families, Jennifer was a corporate Human Resources executive and executive coach for over a decade at top Fortune 500 companies, such as Nike, Morgan Stanley, and Computer Sciences Corporation (CSC). She is a graduate of Cornell University and currently resides in the Los Angeles area with her husband, Owen, and their two energetic little boys. Visit her at, or wellthyfamilies

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Splish-Splash Summer Is Here

All summer we will be playing with water at Plum Playgroup. Kids love to splish and splash in the water. We created a portable water table by filling a plastic storage bin with H2O. Add a few cups,

Portable Water Table

funnels, squeeze bottles and wha la…non-stop fun! Pack an extra change of clothes & Come play with us!

The fun doesn’t end with water…check out this site for more ideas on what to put in the water/sensory table at your house. When the weather cools down which one do you want to see at Plum Playgroup?

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Are You Ready to Get F.I.T.?

Mommy and Me workoutLast week we had our monthly Mom’s Night Out. Our Stroller Strides mamas got a chance to get out of their workout clothes and slip into that sexy summer dress that has been hiding in the back of the closet. We were dazzled and mystified by the magicians at The Magic Castle. After the show a few of us began joking about the kind of magic we wish we had…a way to silence that annoying talking toy, to wave a wand and make dinner appear, to summon our dog to clean up and entertain the kids but vanish before the mail-carrier shows up with another Amazon delivery…to magically fit back into pre-pregnancy clothes. Alas, there is no magic. Change requires more than just some hocus pocus. If you want to fit back into your pre-pregnancy wardrobe you have to work at it. For most of us the pounds don’t come off as easily as they went on. But don’t give up! They do come off. If you feel like you have reached a plateau, maybe it is time to reevaluate your workouts through the lens of the F.I.T. Principle.

The answer lies in the F.I.T. Principle:Stroller Strides Workout

Frequency: How often are you getting to class and working out?

Intensity: How hard are you working out when you are there?

Time: How long are your workouts?

Frequency & intensity are in your control! How many times did you come to class last week? How many times should you, to get the results you want? When you are in class, are you giving it your all? We all love to chat with our friends but is your jaw getting more of a workout than the rest of your body? Stroller Strides instructors offer modifications for all fitness levels. If you want more intensity, speak up and we will give it to you! There is no magic, no presto chango, but by pushing yourself beyond what is comfortable, you will unveil a leaner, healthier, happier you.

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Wall Sit with Bicep Curls

Everyone loves the wall sit!   It is a great exercise to work the lower body…add in a Bicep curl and you work your upper body as well.   Nothing better than an exercise that lets you multitask.  Who knew sitting could be so strenuous?

Directions: Get into a wall sit, the goal is to have your thighs parallel to the ground.  Place the tube under the arch of the foot and hold on to the handles.  In the wall sit, start bicep curls with elbows against the wall.   Click here to watch a video.

Stroller Strides Wall Sit & Bicep Curl
  • Pull shoulders away from the ears
  • Keep core engaged throughout by drawing belly button towards the spine
  • Keep shoulder blades and head against the wall.
  • To make this less intense, perform without the tubing and/or come out of the wall sit a little.

* exercise courtesy of Stroller Strides Corporate

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Mother, Wife, Stroller Strides Owner… Blogger??

Welcome to Stroller Strides Los Angeles’ Blog! Yep…I started a blog.  I never in a million years dreamed that I, a dyslexic non-writer, would be blogging.  I am not a writer. Do you hear me?  I AM NOT A WRITER!  Writing scares me. Spell check is my BFF…although it still leaves me at a total loss as to whether I feel bad or badly about the fact that I’m an educator with two masters degrees who suffers from intense grammarphobia.

I wear a multitude of hats…mother, daughter, sister, wife, teacher, friend, fitness instructor, small business owner…but blogger??  Well, I watch babies learning new skills every day.  I am constantly pushing my own children to try new things.  It is time that I follow my own advice, face my fears, step out of my safe space and push myself to new heights.

What will I blog about, you ask?  Good question.  Things that have helped me make strides in motherhood.  From the handy little fitness tip to the inspirational life story and everything in between.  I’ll be putting it all out there for whoever is interested…for whomever? Oh…whatever! Join me on this adventure outside of my comfort zone.


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