In the world of fitness, just like in any industry, the landscape is dotted with things that are true, things that aren’t,… and some things that might be true, but we really wish they weren’t! We sat down for a few minutes with professional trainers Allison Stimmel and A.J. Kelly at Fit Farm and asked them: “What is your favorite fitness cliché?” Here’s what we found!
Hey guys! Thanks for taking the time to do this! Let’s start with the obvious – when you’ve been around in the industry as long you’ve been, a lot of things become cliché. In terms of sayings we hear repeatedly, what are your favorites?
Allison: Failure is a GOOD thing, cause it means you gave it all you got!
A.J.: Whether you think you can or think that you can’t…you are always right
Out of the 640 or so muscles in the human body, what is your favorite muscle and why?
Allison: The Sartorius, because it’s the longest muscle in the body, and I like the way it wraps around the thigh. It’s not a very important muscle because it’s thin and weak, but if you have ever crossed your legs or looked at the bottom of your foot- you’ve used it!
A.J.: Tibialis Anterior because it is responsible for Dorsi Flexion…which you will hear me say a lot here at Fit Farm.
How did each of you get into professional fitness?
Allison: When I was in high school, I would go with my best friend every day and run around the track at the high school, run stairs, etc. (It was our way of socializing and not spending money). When I was deciding what I wanted my major to be in college, Exercise Science seemed like a natural choice, because at the time I was considering Physical Therapy as a career. As I began getting into the specific classes that deal with exercise and sport performance, I shifted my focus to what exercise can do for the body before it needs physical therapy. I began interning in the athletic training facility at my college my sophomore year, which led to having personal training sessions with a couple of the faculty members and their spouses!
A.J.: I started to work out when I was 12 years old mainly for improving my performance in football. My brother Brad helped me getting started. Our high school was so big that the Freshman football team had two teams. A “Black” squad which was for the 3rd and 4th stringers, and a “Orange” squad which was for the 1st and 2nd stringers. My brother was 3rd string on the black team his Freshman year. He started lifting weights and seeing him change physically was my inspiration. By the time he was a Senior he was captain of the football team! I have been obsessed with working out ever since then. Reading “Flex” and “Muscle & Fitness” religiously. I myself say the changes in my body and my performance improve along with my confidence. By the time I was a Junior I had most of the football players in the weight room working out with me and trying new things. I wish I could go back in time and actually train right!
I went to University of Wisconsin Whitewater mainly to play football. First day of practice there was a Strength and Conditioning coach that was taking us through our workout. At the time, I had never heard of anything like that. I asked the coach what do you I need to go to school for to do what he is doing…he advised to me to transfer to University of Wisconsin La Crosse. The rest is history…went and did my undergrad in Exercise Science and a minor in Strength and Conditioning.
As a follow up to that, along the way, what was the weirdest job you’ve had?
Allison: I’m not sure I’ve had any weird jobs, but my best stories are from working retail around the holidays!
A.J.: Pass! (laughing)
Alright. Let’s do a ‘popcorn question’ round – some simple one liners: Favorite movie, band, cheat meal, and one fun fact about you.
Allison: Favorite Movie: “You’ve got mail” – my mom and I used to watch it together all the time!
Favorite band: Changes all the time, but currently The 1975
Cheat Meal: Cheeseburger!
Fun Fact: Giraffes are my favorite animal and I may or may not love April the Giraffe a little too much…..
A.J.: Favorite Movie: I have three that if they are on TV that I have to watch. Shawshank Redemption, Gladiator, and Rudy
Favorite Band: Anything 90’s alternative – Bush, Pearl Jam, Nirvana
Cheat Meal: Domino’s Philly Cheese Steak Pizza
Fun Fact: I am an absolute die hard Green Bay Packers fan! Painted my garage Packers colors when I lived in South Carolina. GO PACK GO!
Okay. Let’s get closer to home. What’s your favorite part about working at Fit Farm?
Allison: The beauty. Fit Farm has some AMAZING sunsets, and watching them from the Mess Hall is breathtaking!
A.J.: I like to think of my job as recess all day long. I don’t know anyone else who has a job like me who gets paid to go on bike rides, play basketball, etc… and see my clients change not just physically but also mentally. It’s a really rewarding job and I am very fortunate to have found my true calling in life!
You knew this question was coming! What’s your main Karaoke go-to song?
Allison: (laughing) Wagon Wheel, or anything by Britney Spears (E-mail My Heart, anyone?)
A.J.: Definitely ‘Living on a Prayer’ by Bon Jovi
A lot of times, people view professional trainers as these really inspirational, really disciplined people. Sometimes they forget that trainers are human too, just like the rest of us. In keeping with saying that, what are your biggest fears?
Allison: I’d have to say, either falling from a great height, or being covered in spiders. Both are terrifying.
A.J.: Similar to Allison. I can do roller coasters, planes, etc. But if there is a chance of me falling, it terrifies me! Ladders are definitely a ‘no-go’ for this guy!
Allison Stimmel is a Certified Trainer at Fit Farm just outside Nashville, TN. She is a Johnson City, TN native, which explains her obsession with “Wagon Wheel”. Her fitness adventures have taken her to the Lowcountry where she grew to celebrate creative outlets for exercise and fun ways to stay active including instructing paddle-board yoga, AirDrum workouts, yo-qua, and cycling. When she’s not shamelessly dancing around Fit Farm, she’s hanging out with her dog Maverick (who likes to sleep more than any of the exercises listed above). Allison also enjoys hiking, crafting, and wearing crazy socks. Have questions? Get Whippy with Allison on her Ask Me Anthying! (r/IAmA/) subreddit HERE! Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org with your questions!
A.J. Kelly is the Chief Motivational Officer at Fit Farm, and heads up the training department. As a fitness professional for over 15 years, A.J. leads from a diverse body of proven working experience in personal training, strength and conditioning, executive management, and sales. His training experience ranges from working with Olympic and Professional level athletes to medical training with seniors. He is a National Strength Conditioning Association (NSCA) Professional Member, a NSCA Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist, and a TRX Cardio Tennis Suspension Training Certified Professional.
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