I had no idea that #NationalJerkyDay existed (it’s Friday, June 12th).  Until recently, I wouldn’t have even paid attention to a day that included the word “jerky” but that changed when I got the chance to work out with Jillian Michaels a few weeks ago at an event sponsored by Krave Jerky.

KRAVE Jerky, Jillian MIchaels, KRAVEBetter

I’ll be honest, I don’t eat red meat or pork but I originally decided to go to this event for the experience of working out with Jillian and as potential giveaway option for my readers.  I’ve seen Jillian debut her BodyShred class at the EFC Now Conference in a large forum and I became a fan after hearing her speak at IDEAWorld BlogFest 2014, so a chance to workout in a small group with this fitness phenom was a no-brainer.

Who knew I’d learn 5 New Things About Fitness (and jerky) in the process?

K: Keep it real.

In Los Angeles, few things are real (including body parts and people) and it can be unnerving sometimes.  No matter how much self confidence you have in life, there’s something inherent in most women that makes us undergo the quick comparison of ourselves to every other woman in the room.  When Jillian Michaels is one of those women in the room, a slight panic might ensue but guess what?  Jillian Michaels is an exceptionally fit and healthy woman but she looks like a real person.  

Jillian Michaels, workout, health, Biggest Loser, Krave Jerky

As a woman over 40, I like to see fitness examples that are made from hard work and healthy living, not science.

In the vein of healthy living and not science, I was also happy to learn that KRAVE Jerky products have no added nitrites (a synthetic preservative) or MSG in any of their offerings.

R: Raise healthy kids (and adults) with healthy food attitudes.

As a dietitian, I believe that teaching people about nutrition takes a lot of attitude adjustment and de-lableing.  It was refreshing to hear that Jillian Michaels has the same philosophy.  Jillian talked about educating her young children about movement and food rather than classifying it as “exercise” and “healthy” foods.

Jillian Michaels, mother, children, nutrition education, KRAVE Jerky

I truly believe that if more people were educated about food and felt empowered to make decisions about their intake and movement without feeling an obligation to be “good”, more people would be leading healthy lifestyles.

Spreading out carbohydrates, proteins and fats throughout the day in enjoyable ways that are also nourishing to the body, is the only way to lead a long term healthy lifestyle rather than following a dogmatic “meal plan” or “diet”.


KRAVE does hydration well.  Food was also provided but my photos were not great.

A: Activity for 30 minutes can be very challenging.

Don’t be fooled.  30 minutes can kick your ass.  Jillian had us working hard (which was not an easy feat after an anniversary celebration that included a bottle of wine on a weeknight) but the full body workout was more than effective.

KRAVE Jerky, Jillian Michaels, #KraveBetter, #jerkylove

In our world of “two-a-day” workouts, it’s nice to know that longer isn’t always better.  As an injured person on the mend, longer isn’t even an option right now.

V: Variety is the spice of life…and jerky.

Ok, so now’s the time to admit that I didn’t know that KRAVE Jerky was more than just beef jerky.  I had no idea that KRAVE currently has multiple meat options including: 2 pork (Black Cherry Barbecue and Grilled Sweet Teriyaki) 2 turkey (Basil Citrus and Lemon Garlic) – see below) and 5 beef (Sweet Chipotle, Chili Lime, Garlic Chili Pepper, Pineapple Orange and Sea Salt Original).  I really liked the Basil Citrus Turkey and my family really enjoyed the Chili Lime Beef (the fam likes red meat and pork).

Krave Jerky, NationalJerkyDay, #kravebetter

KRAVE Jerky is definitely a healthy savory snack with 1 oz of jerky providing 90 calories or less with 8-12 g of protein but there are 2 important things you should know:

  • If you have a gluten sensitivity or allergy, you’ll be happy to know that KRAVE recently reformulated their product and they are all now gluten free!
  • If you are watching your sodium intake, take notice because only the Pineapple Orange Beef and the Sweet Grilled Teriyaki Pork have the least amount of sodium per serving at 250 mg of sodium and a 3.25oz bag offers 3.5 servings of jerky.

After perusing the KRAVE website, I noticed the Krave Artisanal line (a small batch extension with Whole Foods) which offers some interesting options (Chardonnay Thyme Turkey Jerky, anyone?).  I recommend that KRAVE take their Artisanal packaging art (which features an illustration of the jerky-ed animal) and incorporating the idea to their main line of products because figuring out which jerky was which isn’t easy (all packages look alike and the word search for the animal takes more doing than most may want to invest).

E: Even Jillian hates squats…but does them anyway.

Yup, even Jillian Michaels admits that she hates squats.  It’s great when celebrities prove their humanity in public.  I know there are people who looooove squats but I’m not one of them.  However, sometimes you do have to do things you don’t like in this world to make yourself a little bit better, right?

KRAVE Jerky, Jillian Michaels, #KRAVEBetter,

Jillian might not like them but she certainly made us do a ton of them.  I may not have been able to do every single fitness move of the workout (due to my injury) but I certainly was challenged and had a lot of fun.  It was a great experience in fitness and food.  I’m glad to add a new fitness equipment and some new savory snack options to my healthy lifestyle arsenal.

What’s your favorite savory snack?

Disclosure:  I was invited to this event by KRAVE Jerky and was given a complimentary gift bag including product, a mat, weights and a workout video.  I have no affiliation with KRAVE Jerky or Jillian Michaels and was under no obligation to write about my experience at this event or with the products.  All opinions expressed are 100% my own.