Thank you so much for joining us! Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?
My professional background is in business, I have an MBA from the University of Colorado and I worked in Sports Marketing for the Colorado Rapids for 6 years. I had always thought fitness was going to be a part-time job on the side for me. I loved group fitness and started out teaching BodyPump at 24-Hour Fitness in 2012 since that was my favorite class to take. After getting certified in and teaching BodyPump, BodyCombat, Grit, and BootyBarre, for a few years I made the switch to boutique fitness; at Orange Theory Fitness. I loved the boutique environment and really being able to make personal connections with members. In 2017, I took a leap of faith and entered the fitness industry on a full-time level at CycleBar Orchard Park Place as an Instructor and General Manager.
Last year I took a Lead Instructor position with Rise Nation Colorado, as we opened 3 studios in the Denver Metro Area. It’s been an incredible journey to see the brand, the community, and the instructor team grows. I could not be more at home as the Director of Training with 20 incredible instructors on the team.
I’m also incredibly excited to be part of the team at CLMBR (clmbr.com), which is a new fitness equipment company launching a state-of-the-art climbing machine with engaging metrics, guided climbs, and on-demand classes later this year.
Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started doing this?
The most interesting and the best thing about working in fitness has always been people. I’ve had a front-row seat to some amazing physical transformations, including one member losing 100+ lbs. I had a gal celebrate two years in remission by taking my class, there are two couples who climb together with their spouses every Saturday, and an incredible member who tells me she climbs at “Christa’s Church of Rise” every Tuesday. I’ve also got to witness and had the honor of coaching a couple of incredible members who wanted to become instructors, and it was amazing to see their journey and success.
At CLMBR, I’ve had the incredible opportunity to watch this product over the last 12 months go from a concept and sketches to our 4th production prototype. From a single machine being assembled in our owner’s garage to full production later this year, complete with engaging metrics and on-demand classes. It’s been amazing to see it all come together.
Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them to thrive and not “burn out”?
We have an incredible opportunity in the fitness industry to positively impact the community and it’s important for instructors to keep in mind that they are making a difference. Having that sense of contribution to something bigger than ourselves really helps instructors not to burn out. Members deserve and expect our absolute best every day, for every class. Sometimes we have to put our game faces on and really show up for the benefit of the members. It’s also ok to take some days off! If there are days as an instructor you really aren’t feeling 100%, it’s ok to take off and recharge your own batteries. We can’t be our best selves for anyone else unless we take care of ourselves first.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story?
I’ll forever be grateful to an incredible woman, Kate Papke who passed away from cancer in 2019. She gave me my first shot in the industry and hired me without any experience, but thought I had potential and had what it takes to be great. Thanks for believing in me.
How have you used your success to bring goodness to the world?
Working out, for me, has as much mental and emotional benefit as physical. In my classes, I try to inspire and motivate members as much as I can. Everyone has challenges outside of the studio and I like to use the time during class to remind members to take a moment and clear their heads, remember how strong and capable they are, and feel good about what they’re doing. Life is hard and crazy and we are constantly being thrown curveballs, and I think fitness is a great space to recharge our batteries, feel confident, strong, and empowered to get back into the world and be our best selves.
Do you have a favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share a story of how that was relevant to you in your life?
Funny, but one of the members of CycleBar actually made a shirt for me that said, “Don’t be an a$$hole to yourself.” It’s something that I say regularly in classes and the reasoning behind it is that if you know you can do better, you should do better. If deep down you know you’re not giving something everything you have, then work harder and do better. That said, if you are doing your best, whatever your best is, then don’t beat yourself up. Be proud, shake the doubt and negative self-talk, and “Don’t be an asshole to yourself.”
How can our readers follow you on social media?
The readers can follow me on Instagram “@ctrux_fit”.