We know developing a healthy lifestyle while keeping a work-life balance can be quite a juggle at times, just ask Youfit’s Administrative and Operations Assistant, Genevieve Cann. She lost over 70 pounds since joining the Youfit staff and continues to set new goals for her health and fitness journey. We got the chance to sit with Genevieve and learn more about her story:
1. What three words describe you best and why?
Friendly, supportive and empathic. I think these words best describe me because I’m always putting others needs before mine. I am big on giving back and lending a hand where needed.
2. How have fitness & healthy habits played a role in becoming your best self?
Fitness & healthy living have become very prominent in me becoming my best self. In order for me to set myself up for success, I have to exercise my mind and my body to allow continued room for growth. I think of lifting a weight I never have before and in order to do so, I must progress up to it. That’s life! We have to continually grind and put in the work to see even the slightest amount of progress. But when we do see the progress, it makes all the hard work, sweat, and tears worth it!
3. What are ways you incorporate a healthy lifestyle so it’s a daily part of your life?
I make living a healthy lifestyle a priority in my life EVERYDAY! This starts with the food I eat, down to the number of workouts I’ll complete each week. I like to workout 5-6 times a week- whether that be a lifting day, cardio day or just a mind and body day. Of course like the average person, I allow myself to cheat but its extremely important to have cheat meals, not cheat days. This was one BIG LESSON I had to learn, as I used to think if I ate good most of the time, I could have a whole day of eating whatever I wanted and let me tell you, I was wrong! I wake up every day and decide to make decisions that align with my healthy lifestyle to allow me to live the healthiest, happiest, and longest life I can!
4. What is one way you recommend for others to do the KIND thing for their bodies?
One recommendation I can make for people is to get in the gym and lift! It doesn’t have to be heavy- lift what feels right for your body- but it’s been proven to help with heart and mental health. On my worst days, if I can get in for a lifting session, it allows me to release all the stress and pent up aggression, which allows me to center myself and let it go.
5. Why is it important to be KIND to your body?
It’s important to be kind to our bodies because we only get one! We have to make the best of the life we’re given and in order to do that we have to take care of ourselves- that means mentally, physically and spiritually. I like to think of it like this, we can’t help others if we don’t first help ourselves!
6. Was there anything you found intimidating that kept you from visiting a gym? Tell us how you overcame that fear.
Initially, yes- my weight. When I started my fitness journey I was over 300 lbs and when I walked into the gym I felt everyone was looking at me like “what is this girl doing here”. Once I took a class, I was hooked and first fell in love with only taking classes. As I familiarized myself with the gym, I really started to come out of my shell and dove into personal training head first. I decided that in order to get where I wanted to be and to shed the pounds, I wanted to work with a professional that knew what it took to make it happen. I started training 3x a week and was hooked from there. Fast forward to 4 years, the gym has become an extremely regular thing in my life and on days where I don’t make it in, I almost feel a little lost.
7. What were your expectations before you had ever visited a gym and how was it in reality?
My expectations were that everyone knew what they were doing and they’d probably be a lot of muscle heads! Haha. In reality, once I got over the “fear” of everyone staring, I realized how welcoming everyone was. Youfit made me feel like family the moment I walked through the door.
8. Walk us through your go-to health regimen. Any pre or post workout rituals?
My go-to health regimen consists of meal prepping to allow myself to stay disciplined with what’s going in my body. I find when I wing it, I tend to make poor choices. Like I said earlier, I like to put in work at the gym 5-6 days a week. Typically, I’ll start with some form of cardio as a warm-up. Lately, I’ve found running extremely mind clearing so I’ve been doing about a mile warm up. Then, I get down to the nitty-gritty and pick a muscle group. I like breaking the body up and focusing on individual muscle groups rather than doing full body workouts.
9. What are your favorite non-traditional benefits from exercise and a healthy diet?
I absolutely LOVE seeing the gains, I love when I notice a muscle popping that wasn’t there before, and I love it when my old tight clothes become big t-shirts. There is also no greater feeling than successfully increasing the weight on an exercise. It’s so fulfilling when you’ve struggled to push past a certain weight and you get it- it makes you feel like you can conquer the world! Eating healthy has also opened my food pallet to things I would have never eaten before.
10. What are three ways you combat hunger?
I combat hunger by ensuring I drink enough water daily (often times we’re really not hungry, we’re just thirty and our brain cannot tell the difference), I eat something every 2-3 hours, and when I do eat a full meal, I fill my body with good nutrients that’ll help me to stay fuller longer.
11. How do you stay active outside of the gym?
I play in a weekly softball league, I enjoy running outside, swimming- really anything outside! I enjoy doing yoga and meditation to help clear and calm my mind.
12. What motivates you/continues to motivate you?
Seeing the changes in myself, not just in the mirror, but in self-confidence and self-esteem. When I started my journey, I did it for me but never had the thought of how impactful I’d be to others. Helping others stay motivated or realizing they want to make a change is almost as fulfilling as all the progress I’ve made along my journey.
13. Any advice for someone just starting his/her fitness journey?
YOU CAN DO IT! Start with a small goal and tackle it! I feel like so many people go into the gym with these unrealistic goals and they set themselves up for failure and don’t understand why they weren’t successful. Also, remember that the changes you want to see WILL NOT happen overnight. You have to continually put in work in all aspects to get where you want to be. I am nowhere near where I want to be, but the important thing is I’m always working towards moving the needle closer.
14. What’s the single most important takeaway for our readers?
Put in the work and the results will follow!
15. What drew you to the Youfit family?
Initially, it was a dance class that got me hooked. I went in with a friend to try it out and left with my own Lime Card membership. From there, I decided to start my journey with a personal trainer and later decided to broaden my journey even more by coming on board as apart of the staff- first as an instructor/front desk, and then decided to continue my journey in the corporate office.
Youfit Location: Corporate
Favorite exercise: Med ball slams & wall ball shots
Favorite motivational quote: “It does not matter how slowly you go, as long as you don’t stop”