As Marketing Manager for Phoenix Fitness I (Tesi) am the one asking the questions of our transformation team in our previous installments. Today it was my turn to answer so bear with me as my verbose nature really came out during the Q & A. I teach BODYSTEP Tuesdays at 8am, BODYFLOW Wednesdays at 8am, BODYCOMBAT Thursdays at 4:30pm and Fridays at 9:15am, CXWORX Tuesdays at 8:30am, Thursdays at 5pm and Fridays at 10:00am. I’m the GRIT coach on Mondays/Wednesdays at 10:15am.
PF: How did you get started in Fitness?
TK: I’ve been an athlete my whole life in one form or another so staying active feels more natural to me than not. Almost 9 years ago I decided to quit my full time job to stay home with my kids and was approached by a Group Fitness Manager at my local Y (in Iowa) about training for this new program called BODYPUMP. She gave me a 1-on-1 class to show me what it was like and I was hooked!
PF: How did you choose Phoenix Fitness?
TK: Having just moved here from Iowa a year ago, I was in search of a gym that offered a variety of Les Mills programs as well as a gym that would push me to be a better instructor. I came from a really phenomenal Y in Iowa that felt more like a family and I was pretty desperate to find that in Michigan too. I met Marta and most of the team soon after moving here and it felt so good to be amongst so many great instructors who happen to be really fun people as well. I’m so thankful I found Phoenix Fitness as soon as I did; it’s made the transition from home so much easier.
PF: You are certified in BODYPUMP, BODYSTEP, BODYFLOW, BODYCOMBAT, CXWORX and GRIT, do you have a favorite to teach?
TK: I get asked this question a lot and my truest answer is always, “Whatever I’m teaching at that given moment.” Even though I participated in college athletics I can tell you that I’ve never been fitter or healthier than since I started teaching these programs. They each do something different for and to my body and I’m grateful for all of them. I do believe, however, that BODYFLOW is probably the one that rings the truest to my personality. I love the focus on mind/body awareness and I feel the most transformed as an entire person because of that program. I also got to teach it with my best friend back in Iowa so there’s undoubtedly some element of feeling connected to her through BODYFLOW too.
PF: What do you love about teaching?
TK: It’s impossible to put into words exactly why I love teaching so much but for sure I find the most joy when someone who is new to health or wellness falls in love with moving his/her body. It’s a powerful moment and I feel incredibly grateful that I get to witness it. Even though our culture often tries to tell us if you’re not miserable the whole time you’re working out it’s not working, Les Mills classes (and Phoenix Fitness in particular) prove otherwise-I love being part of the counter-cultural movement.
Selfishly speaking, there are very few times other than when I’m teaching that I can just be so alive and fully in the moment. I don’t have time to think about my kids or my good looking husband when I’m teaching because I’m always thinking about the moves and how to get more from the members. I love the practice of mindfulness in the moment and there are certainly days when the only time I’m “in it” is when I’m teaching.
PF: What are a few of your go to healthy snacks?
TK: Almonds and fruit are always on my person. Liz Graham also got me hooked on Sweet Chili flavored pistachios so there’s always a bag of those in my purse. We’re a plant-based family so my snacks are basically all fruit, veg and nuts.
PF: Do you work outside teaching at Phoenix Fitness?
TK: I do! I do all of the marketing for Phoenix Fitness as well as some freelance marketing for a few other companies. I’m also the proud mom to 5 cherubs so shuffling them to and from their activities feels like another full time gig-one in which I feel so incredibly thankful that I have the flexibility to manage.
PF: What are your hobbies outside of teaching at Phoenix Fitness?
TK: Spending time with family and friends is certainly a favorite hobby of mine. I also love cooking and the meditative practice of chopping veggies. I love traveling and seeing as much of the world as possible. I’m a big reader so I can often be found in our hammock with a good book (always taking recommendations!)
PF: What is one thing people at Phoenix Fitness might not know about you?
TK: If you’ve met me you probably know virtually all there is to know-I’m not particularly quiet (as evidenced by the long answers above) but maybe some don’t know that in high school I used to race Olympian Lolo Jones (picture below). Also I’ve held a Koala and they are really not cuddly at all-they are scratchy and angry. My kids also thought you should know about them (Trysten-12, Tomas-11, Tariku-10, Dailah-8 and Binyam-8) and that I love Harry Potter. ☺
Just a quick note to thank you all for reading and getting to know our Transformation Team and members, it has been a true pleasure to get to know them all better. I hope you look forward to them as much as I do!