Tag Archives: Personal trainer

New Year, New Rear with Active Vixens

4 Jan

TGIF TGIF TGIF..cue in the saxophone and Katy Perry.

Today is a GREAT day, not only because it’s Friday, but also because I received amazing news last night! Thanks to Meagan, the founder of and mastermind behind Active Vixen, a community created for athletic women to share workouts, stories, and outfits with one another, has chosen to feature me on her blog! I’m deeply honored to be a part of something that, I too, believe in; sweating in our respective communities and reaching greatness.

 Home » Featured Vixens

Meet Katie!

Featured Vixen - Katie!Hobbies: Exercising, cooking/baking, shopping, crosswords, traveling/exploring, blogging

Name: Katie Age: 22 From: Rochester, MI3 Words that Describe You: Passionate, Innovative, Determined We love passion!How do you stay active? Running, teaching and taking group fitness, personal training clients, yoga, CrossFit: anything to support my community! Darn, girl – you do it all!What do you do for you? Eat well, rest, spend time with family and friend who support me, shop, cook and love lifeKatie, we are so impressed.  You do so much for a 22 year old.  Keep up the great work and continue to share you passion with others! – AV
Sharing my passion for fitness and meeting others with like-minded passions is so powerful; reaching out and connecting with individuals who strive for greatness everyday is a blessing to me! Thank you Active Vixen!
In honor of both the New Year and my amaze news..I’ve got a doozy of a workout for you! It’s a treadmill walking and running workout with steep inclines, surely steep enough to get those rears in gear ;). Thank you Courtney for being an inspiration to this workout!
Time MPH Incline
0-5:00 4 1%
5:00-10:00 7 2%
10:00-12:00 4.5 2%
12:00-14:00 4.2 8%
14:00-16:00 4 10%
16:00-18:00 4.2 8%
18:00-20:00 4.5 2%
20:00-22:00 4.2 8%
22:00-24:00 4 10%
24:00-26:00 4.2 8%
26:00-28:00 4.5 2%
28:00-33:00 7-8.0 2%
33:00-40:00 4 1%
As always, both the speed and the inclines are there as a reference; everyone is at a different stage in their fitness levels, it’s YOUR workout, workout for your level!

Have a great weekend!

Heyo-I’m A PiYo Instructor

2 Sep

PiYo™ is a unique class designed to build strength & gain flexibility. The moves  fit perfectly together to form a class filled with intense choreography that’s  fun, challenging and will make you sweat. It’s about energy, power, and rhythm.  Think sculpted abdominals, increased overall core strength, and greater  stability. (source)

Last Sunday, I finally got certified in PiYo at Club 1 Fitness Studio in Pittsburgh, PA.

The day started at 9am with a brief overview of the entire certification process. Lauren, our PiYo instructor and a Duquesne alumni!, explained the certification process in detail, what to expect when we take the “exam”, and answered any questions we had. She was enthusiastic, personable, and her energy was contagious!

All of the attendees received a manual to use as a reference, but the certification was more hands-on than any other certification I’ve been through. As much as I like to have something to hold and refer back to, I’d rather be up and moving and learning and feeling rather than being talked at. I’m much more of a kinesthetic, visual, and read-write learner than an auditory learner! I may or may not have selective hearing..

The one con about this certification was the lack of education in the anatomy part of teaching group fitness. The instructor (not to criticize her as she was doing her job to focus more on teaching us PiYo choreography) skipped over it, without even reviewing basic terminology that would help us understand the choreography more. Nerd alert. I LOVE learning about the body; how it moves, what connects to what, muscles, planes, levers, oh my; there’s always opportunity to learn more about this amazing machine we live in. I don’t think there was an assumption that we were all certified group fitness instructors, personal trainers, or even fitness professionals in some way so a basic anatomy lesson would have been beneficial. I think that’s the biggest downfall of these pre-choreographed certifications; the instructor may or may not have an exercise-type degree and/or background so they don’t know the mechanics of it or even the basics when it comes to anatomy.

Ranting over.

After a flip through of the manual, it was time to sweat glisten! Lauren took us through an hour and a half workout that was a fusion of various PiYo releases. I’ll tell ya..music was on point! PiYo doesn’t follow the 32-count, rather, its BPM is relatively consistent throughout the workout and the moves just flow; there isn’t a set move to a beat. You do 2 repetitions of each exercise and move to the next exercise in a fluid and somewhat graceful cadence. The certification comes with a CD and the exercises that associate with each song -BUT- it’s just an outline. What’s great about PiYo and why I gravitated towards it is that it gives you the freedom to put your OWN spin on the workout, so that no PiYo class is the same at the end of the day. As long as you follow the outline, it is a PiYo class that’s filled with the instructors’ personal flavor!

After a much-needed lunch break, we got into groups of 4 and practiced the 12 PiYo essential exercises that are a mix between yoga and Pilates moves. We also practiced the warm-up (which is the same warm-up as the last couple of releases) and had the opportunity to get up in front of the class and teach it. The rest of the afternoon was dedicated to the exam! We ended up getting out early which I throughly appreciated; I feel like I’ve been to hundreds of certifications! #fitnessinstructorprobs

I’m super excited about learning the choreography, owning it, and putting my own spin and flavor in my Piyo classes! The coordinator at OU and I are going to team-teach a PiYo class next semester, since were both newbies to teaching a mind/body class consistently. Team-teaching is so much fun! We thrive off of each other’s energy, get creative with our moves and workouts, and give the particpants a one-two punch when it comes to their group fitness experiece..the more the merrier!

What type of learner are you?

When you attend ANY certification, would you rather it be hands-on or off?

I am a Healthy Living Blogger.

8 Aug

Yep, that’s right..I am a healthy living blogger! I blog about all things fitness, health, wellness, and food related interspersed with my own quirky thoughts on everything from fashion, reality TV, sports, books, crossword puzzles, and normal life probz of a maturing 22-year old woman.

Where is this coming from? An afternoon yoga class with my mother and an instructor whose message had a direct path to my heart. Her words before we started our practice:

breathe. take a moment to listen to your body. set the tone for your practice. what do you wish to accomplish today? can you erase the negativity, the cannot’s, the I wish’s and focus on the positives, the I’ll tries and I can’s, and the gratefulness. it’s just you, the mat, and your strong, beautiful, and capable body. let’s go.

A couple of doctor’s appointments, a prescription, and a new workout routine seemed to help some symptoms I’ve been experiencing. There’s nothing wrong with me! Good news-not that I wanted there to be something wrong but at least I would know why I’ve been feeling so blah, time and time again-always looking for the easy way out I tell ya. My doctor did another blood test on me and everything is A-OK. We talked about everything I’ve been experiencing and she thinks it’s just stress. I agree 110%; stressing about my next move- new friends, old friends, working, exercising, eating, sleeping- can cause a body to stop producing what seems like EVERYTHING and over-tax all systems. I’m getting back on BC to regulate estrogen and progesterone levels, taking Caltrate (a calcium supplement) to increase the calcium and vitamin D in my bones as well as drinking milk and eating calcium-rich foods, and starting my day with a hefty dose of Miralax. Simple enough and semi-all natural.

Revamping my exercise routine to listen to my body more. I’ve taken a break from lifting weights (Get Ripped DVDs and Body Pump since I’ve been home) and instead, adding more body weight exercises and classes to keep me toned, strong, and my perception of the “ideal look” that suites me. Yoga, Pilates, cycling, running, and resting are my main gig’s currently. I’ve taken a break from weight training because, in my opinion AND for my liking, I was too muscular, especially in my upper body. PLEASE DO NOT GET ME WRONG! I think a toned, sleek, and sculpted body on a woman is sexy and attractive but for MY body (my height, genes, type of body and shape), it was a little too much for me. Everyone has their own definition of fitness and this is mine. I’ll never erase weight training from my routines, but am taking a minor break from it; add in the fact that I’ve been doing Body Pump and Get Ripped for going on 6 years now. This also will give me new goal (to gain back the strength I may lose) to work towards when I decide to add it back in. Plus, my mom likes to do classes with me and she can’t handle the impact of a weight training class, especially when it’s pre-choreographed and the instructor can’t or doesn’t know any better show you variations.

So back to that (one of many) life-changing experiences; it was like an “aha” moment for me. Key words: BREATHE, LISTEN, YOUR BODY, STRESS, NEGATIVITY, POSITIVE, TONE, GRATEFULNESS. All of these words are antonyms of PRESSURE. I’m putting too much pressure on my body. On top of the mere pressure of existing, I’m adding EXTRA to

  1. exercise
  2. blog
  3. start graduate school
  4. maintain a social life
  5. meet new people
  6. fit everything in
  7. make everyone happy

But why? Why can’t I just take the classes to enjoy them anymore? Where, when, why, and how did this mind-set come from; I went from looking at fitness, health, nutrition as something I enjoy, is a passion of mine, and was,is,and will be my career to my becoming own personal drill-sergeant.  I use to pride (and thought I still prided) myself on my attitude towards exercise and balance. To be honest, I think the “healthy living blog” world is a major culprit. I read these blogs and so many bloggers have ED’s, restrictive eating or the like (*NOTE-I am NOT judging, assuming, and/or prescribing ED’s; these are serious and life-threatening diseases and not a joke. My heart goes out to anyone who suffers and I pray for a recovery). I think it took a toll on my own views and opinions and how I need to act in order to be considered a “healthy living blogger”  and gain readership.

Blogs are a personal place where the author has the freedom to write and share about anything they choose to, and I get that and respect their opinions and views. But I want this blog to focus on the positives of fitness, health, wellness, and nutrition and be a place where readers can visit and take the information away with them without feeling like their doing something wrong, not doing enough, or getting caught in that awful comparison trap.

So that’s it. I am a Healthy Living Fitness Blogger who just wants to share my passion and knowledge of fitness, help as many people as I can reach their goals, be their “go-to” guru, and just keep doing what I’m doing!

Thanks for reading and stay tuned! 🙂

Day 27

26 Jun

I’m really getting used to waking up at 5:15am..not sure if that’s a good or bad thing!

I taught Body Sculpt & Stretch at 6:30am; great class with awesome participants! I felt more comfortable with this class than the first Body Sculpt I taught at my internship. I might have been trying to teach like everyone else in order for the participants to like me, which is just silly!

I rounded out the workout with intervals on the elliptical (30 seconds OFF-45 seconds ON). Breakfast followed in the form of OIAC-so easy to transport!

I took the personal training coordinator through an equipment orientation and a tour of the facilities as if she were a real client; I pass (if you will) and will start to take real clients through! However, I’ve decided I don’t want to focus solely on actual training sessions for 2 reasons:

  1. the program here is completely different from anything I’ve done previously and anything I’ll do in the future. I know I won’t get adapted to it but I prefer to stay in-sync with my training style for now.
  2. I’m not here that much longer and hate to start a routine that I won’t be unable to follow-up with the client.

I’m content with my assignments in regards to the personal training program, especially since I started teaching group fitness and am working on wellness profiles.

I attended Yoga Stretch before lunch; my lower back is SO sore and I’m not sure if it’s from an exercise or sitting on a stability ball as a chair. “Excess may do you harm”, is there such a thing as too much spinal stability that I’m irritating my low back instead? Thoughts, comments, Kt you’re crazies?

I taught the dynamic warm-up and lower body portion of Strength Training for Runners. We focused on the BOSU ball and did lots of exercises that incorporated stability and coordination-fun shtuff!

Staff meeting ended the day and I couldn’t be more ready to go home, lay by the pool, and read with Christian Grey. See ya tomorrow!

Day 21

12 Jun

Thank you Pinterest for your words of wisdom :). An early morning workout was the first to-do on my agenda today; I trained at 8am, so I wanted to push myself and get the weights workout done in an hour-check!

Quick overnight oats with cookie butter for breakfast before I trained; it’s the most portable breakfast I know!  I stole borrowed these tin cans from my parents that, I believe, are used for camping; they come in 5 different sizes with lids which make transporting breakfast, lunch, or dinner so easy. There’s really no excuse to not make your own meals!

I can’t believe it’s already half-way through my internship! My supervisor from NC State had his on-site visit this morning; where does the time go? I gave him a tour of the facility (kinda cool I was able to and knowledgeable enough to lead the tour!) then sat down and discussed everything from I’ve been doing and where I’m going next. I felt extremely blessed and grateful to have this internship and being able to have the freedom to pop into a workout class or shadow a trainer or work at my desk all day long. After hearing some of the other students’ internship experiences, I really have it good; I don’t get assigned biatch busy work (thank you!), I have a schedule but not a schedule at the same time, and I’m getting my toes wet in all areas of fitness; it’s so laid-back yet organized and professional and I enjoy working in this type of environment!

We talked about being a rounded individual and how students these days are so focused on one area that they’re actually limiting their chances of ever working in that specific area because they’re not getting other experiences in a variety of fields. It made me re-realize that, yes I love group fitness and personal training, but I both need and want to get a taste of wellness profiles, rehabilitation and injury, facilities, sports clubs, and on-site services that will make me a more qualified individual.

I swear I ate the last of the mayo-less chicken salad! Peanut butter-filled pretzels with a banana to go with. Strength training for runners and a staff meeting capped off the afternoon. I was supposed to meet with one of the Step instructors to go over Stepping for Dummies (kidding) but couldn’t find her; I guess I’ll have to resort to the high-quality Blu-Ray VHS video to teach me how to instruct Step aerobics!

 Black cherry Greek yogurt with slivered, toasted almonds as an afternoon snack :-P.

Can’t wait for this view tomorrow afternoon..

Day 10

25 May

This picture reminds me of the riddle:

“Do you like seafood?”

“I see food and I eat it.”

I promise it was much more appetizing than it looks! Dippy eggs with sautéed spinach and salsa with a toasted/buttered/humusfied bagel thin. My favorite part about dippy eggs is breaking the yolk and watching it ooze out, then taking the bagel and sopping it up. Deeelish. Apple on the side!

I went for a morning run just as the sun was rising-so beautiful! It makes you appreciate the little things in life and puts things into a positive perspective for the day :D.

Today’s probably the busiest day of this particular week; lots of personal training consults that I’m sitting in on. Coming from a college atmosphere, the most tragic/stressful event that took place was  a break-up with a boy/girlfriend, failing a test, missing the bus, or skipping class. In a corporate setting, employees are dealing with real-life personal and work problems and it shows how much it’s affecting their health. One of the main reasons why I decided to intern here is because I wanted to the experience working with a different population and see first-hand how exercising has so much more of a meaning than for aesthetic reasons. As I’m sitting in on these appointments, I’m constantly jotting down notes on how the trainer is speaking to the client, their body positioning and non-verbal cues (eye-contact, posture, facial expressions), what types of questions they’re asking, and their choice of words or phrases. It’s boggling to me; in the PT class I assisted with, we’d have participants “pretend” to have a health issue or a joint problem so the trainer would understand how to exercise that client. Here, there’s no pretending! As much as I’m all for body-weight exercises and functional movements and getting clients to utilize equipment rather than machines, a majority of the population here has to use machines initially, and for quite some time, because of past/current injuries, limited ROM, or basic knowledge. Once they’re confident enough in themselves to perform exercises with proper form, then the trainer advances them. But again, this advancement takes time and that’s a huge factor employees in a corporate setting may not have. Machines are there-all they have to do is put in their setting and weight preference, knock out a couple of reps/sets, change machines, and back to the office they go. It’s thought-provoking..

I observed Body Sculpt (with a different instructor) and Step today. It’s informative for me to see how each instructor teaches the same class but formats it differently to match their respective style, personality, and strengths. I’m like a sponge; I absorb new phrases, terms, exercises, and cues with each observation! The woman who taught Step was astonishing! Hands-down the BEST step instructor I’ve seen. I began the class taking notes of her combos and had to put my paper down 1) because I couldn’t  keep up, and 2) it was so cool to watch! Seeing her makes me want to teach step!

..and FYI- sitting on a cycling bike for extended periods of time will make things go numb.

That is all 🙂 Have a great Memorial Day weekend!

IFTA Events for January 21 & 22

14 Jan

Attentions fitness enthusiasts!

The first IFTA blogging event will happen..

 Saturday January 21 at Camden Overlook Complex, 4703 Summit Overlook Dr. Raleigh NC.

  • 11am-5pm. Learn to Teach Group Fitness Certification- study guide/notes are included. IFTA Safety Requirement or CPR is required!
  • this certification includes a lecture of study materials to prepare you for the exam, an aerobic workout/practical and a written test.
  • cost is $99 plus the $65 text fee- Great price! Register here.

Saturday January 21 at Fitness Flow 7946 Market St. Wilmington, NC. This is a LADIES ONLY gym!

  • 9am-2pm. Mat Pilates certification- study guide/notes are included.
  • this certification includes a lecture of study materials to prepare you for the exam, hands-on training and Pilates movements and a written test.
  • cost is $99 plus the $20 text fee. Register here.

Sunday January  22 at Camden Overlook Complex, 4703 Summit Overlook Dr. Raleigh NC.

  • 11am-5pm. Personal Trainer Certification- study guide/notes are included. IFTA Safety Requirement or CPR is required!
  • this certification includes a lecture of study materials to prepare you for the exam
  • cost is $99 plus the $30 text fee- Register here.


If you’re in the Raleigh and Wilmington area, HURRY and register for these upcoming opportunities! This is a great time of year for fitness!!



Killer Treadmill Interval Sesh for Newbies!

14 Dec

Just because you might be new to HIIT or exercising in general doesn’t mean you have to be limited to any activity! There are ways to progress (make harder) and regress (make easier) all exercises and workouts. This regression of the Killer Treadmill Interval Sesh is just for you! Most importantly, always get clearance from a physician before starting ANY exercise program. I am not YOUR personal trainer, but I am an ACE certified personal trainer.

I’ve cut the workout in half, but by all means, if you can complete all 40 minutes-go for it!

Time Speed Incline
1-5 minutes Warm-up 0%
5-6 minute Medium pace power walk 1%
6-7 minutes Slower pace power walk 2%
7-8 minutes Medium pace power walk 3%
8-9 minutes Slower pace power walk 4%
9-10 minutes Medium pace power walk 5%
10-11 minutes Slower pace power walk 5%
11-12 minutes Medium pace power walk 5%
12-13 minutes Slower pace power walk 5%
13-16 minutes Medium pace power walk 0%
16-17 minutes Steep hill power walk 6-8%
17-18 minutes *Right-angled walk 6-8%
18-19 minutes *Left-angels walk 6-8%
19-20 minutes Steep hill power walk 0%

Cool down at an easy-pace walk with 0% incline.


Angled walks means position your upper body to the right so you have to bring your left leg over your right leg. Position your upper body to the left so you have to bring your right leg over your left leg. This movement works your inner (ADductors) and outer (ABductors) thighs a little more than walking straight. When you can completely turn to the side and “shuffle” (side-step), this move will really target those areas!

How do you make exercise progressions/regressions to your workouts?

Helping Train the Future

27 Sep

NC State University Recreation offers trainee classes for students, faculty, and staff to become either a group fitness instructor or personal trainer. Although the process for each class is different, the end goal is to educate and provide the knowledge, tools and equipment needed in order to succeed.

I assist in teaching the ACE Personal Training class with the goal of helping students, just like me, hopefullypass the exam and learn how to train functionally. A former student, co-worker and friend, Kayla Smitherman,  recently emailed me saying this:

“I hope ur semester is going well! I just wanted to message u to let u know that I passed the ACE exam and I also took the AFAA exam and passed it too. Thanks for all of ur help and ur work with the training class, it was very helpful!”

Isn’t that awesome?! Not only did she pass the ACE exam, but she also took the group fitness trainee class and passed the AFAA exam! This is one of many reasons why I love doing what I do- assisting people of all ages reach their goals. Whether the goal is with a personal training client relating to weight loss or a trainee learning how to do a fitness assessment correctly or a co-worker asking for a favor with their program area- I take pride in being asked for assistance and knowing that I’m a person they trust and can turn to for a helping hand. I feel a lot of people I work with and surround myself with are the same way-we all want the end goal to be successful.


Surround yourself with positive people, environments, and thoughts. Negative things in your life will only bring you down. It’s the people who make us laugh, an environment that’s stress-free, and thoughts that are only positive that will lead us to be successful in all of our goals!

power in positivityPhoto by Pinterest