In a fitness center on Magazine Street, Jordan, the fluffy-eared Shih Tzu/Maltese mix who spends her days at All Inclusive Health (4119 Magazine St., 504-715-0397; www.allinclusivehealth.com) is ready to take on the day after a healthy start in the morning.
First, she gets a little exercise. "She does her yoga in the morning," says owner Julie Joffrion. Joffrion's fiance Matt Marsiglia adds, "She does downward dog right on top of you." After Jordan's gotten a good stretch, it's time for a balanced breakfast. "She usually gets at least a fourth of my breakfast," Joffrion says.
Joffrion opened All Inclusive Health in January 2012 after a long period of teaching special education. "I worked with a lot of students with physical needs," Joffrion says. Coupled with a lifelong appreciation for health and fitness, the experience led her to want to help people achieve physical fitness.
All Inclusive Health offers private personal training sessions, nutrition counseling, group exercise classes and health coaching. Clients appreciate the privacy they get from All Inclusive Health. There are private sessions and the studio is not visible from the street. All Inclusive Health is also affordable: Group classes start at $7 for a single class and $35 for a monthly pass. "It's not a really big commitment," Joffrion says. "If [clients] just want to try it out for a month, it's OK. If their schedule's going to change next month, they don't have to buy some yearlong membership they might not really use."
In addition to her yoga regime, which consists mostly of the downward dog pose and gentle stretches, Jordan is an avid runner, sometimes covering as many as 6 miles. These fitness pursuits are part of an overall wellness plan for the cancer survivor: Last October, Jordan was diagnosed with mammary gland cancer. She underwent surgery to have all eight of her mammary ducts removed. After more than 75 staples and three weeks of recovery, Jordan was back to her old self. All Inclusive Health clients helped nurse her back to wellness.
"Pretty much everyone who's a regular here came together and put a care package together for her," says Alison Morgado, a health coach at All Inclusive Health. "That's kind of how our clientele is. [Everyone] really cares about one another and about the gym."
A couple of clients dog-sit Jordan when Joffrion is away. When Joffrion goes to work early, at 5 a.m., Jordan sleeps in, prompting clients to inquire about her whereabouts.
Jordan loves attention. "She's pretty demanding about her pets," Joffrion says. "If you stop, she'll nose under your hand to get more." She runs to greet clients and get belly rubs before retiring to one of her many spots. "She has to have multiple beds," Joffrion says. "She wants to have choices."
When not at work, Jordan likes crab hunting and swimming. "She loves to go to the beach," Joffrion says. "You can just point to a crab hole and she will go crazy digging it out." Jordan is known to round up ducks while swimming in the bayou.
Joffrion and Morgado are both engaged, as are some of their clients, and in response, All Inclusive Health will offer a summer bridal boot camp. Grooms and non-brides are invited to join as well. "We understand that you just need to kick-start something, and a big event like a wedding can be really motivating," Morgado says. "We want everyone to incorporate health improvement and fitness beyond just preparing for a wedding."
To further facilitate total wellness, All Inclusive Health recently began offering health coaching. "It's not always just about getting a workout in," Joffrion says.
"We want people to see it more as a permanent lifestyle change," Morgado adds.
My Favorite Things
• CRAB HUNTING
• SWIMMING IN THE BAYOU
• BITES OF HUMAN FOOD