Welcome to the Take Five Interview Series, where we explore the wisdom, tips, and tricks to support a healthy lifestyle from other career women. Today we take five with Alyssa Cerrachio, Group Fitness Instructor, and Personal Trainer for Equinox and Athleta.
Did you always know you wanted to be a personal trainer? How did you end up in your role/industry?
While I did not always know that I wanted to be a Personal Trainer, I did always know that I wanted to help people. I got my degree in Psychology at Fordham University, with the intention of going into mental health counseling.
Having been an athlete and dancer my whole life, I also started teaching Zumba. I realized I loved the energy and was able to help people feel good and work hard through movement.
Shortly after, I became a Certified Personal Trainer and continued to learn how I could help people better themselves on a more personal level. I was helping clients improve physically and mentally and I knew this was the industry I was meant to work in.
What do you love most about your job?
As a trainer, I love helping people feel good through strength training and movement. It is amazing to push someone to do a movement or exercise they didn’t think they could do. I love empowering my clients and allowing them to find the strength they had all along. I also love creating time for them to take care of themselves away from their daily lives.
Do you have advice for anyone trying to break into your industry?
I would say when things get challenging and don’t go your way, remember why you started. Think back to why you began this journey and chose to be in this industry. Try to remember your purpose and just keep pushing forward. You are creating an impact every single day, that is the beauty of this industry! Be your most authentic self and continue learning from those around you, both mentors and clients.
What career advice would you give your younger self?
I would tell younger, Alyssa, “Just Do It!” One of my favorite quotes is, “Doubt kills more dreams than failure ever will.” There were many moments in my career when I hesitated to take action because of fear of failure and judgment — but you won’t ever know until you try!
What do you aspire to do and how are you working towards that goal?
I want to help people with their fitness, mindset, and nutrition. I am working towards this by continuing to coach my clients virtually and currently working on my nutrition certification.
Advice for those who struggle with maintaining a fitness routine especially during COVID?
I would suggest trying to find an exercise routine that you enjoy, one that leaves you feeling empowered and accomplished. I am a strong believer that any movement is better than no movement. If you need guidance or accountability, finding a Personal Trainer or a workout buddy can help you maintain this fitness routine. This is a challenging time for all, and establishing a fitness routine can help both physically and mentally.
How do you support your own health in-between work?
In-between training clients and teaching classes, I make sure to stick to my own workouts. It is very important to me to continue to move and stay consistent with my fitness program. It makes me happy and more energized for the day. I also maintain a healthy diet with a lot of protein, vegetables, and water throughout the day.
Before COVID, I was not getting a significant amount of sleep and it was something I always wanted to improve. Over the last 6 months, my sleep has improved greatly which I can tell supports my health and mood greatly!
Favorite fitness regimens?
While I do love all things fitness, I am a huge fan of kettlebells and barbells. Strength training is my favorite, it makes me feel like I can take on anything! My favorite exercise would have to be the deadlift!
I also try to do yoga at least once a week which is always a humbling experience.
Do you have a favorite healthy snack?
My favorite healthy snack would have to be hummus and carrots! So tasty!
What’s your go-to easy meal?
Chicken and broccoli, basic but easy and delicious!
Beauty product you cannot live without?
TREsemme Non-Aerosol Hairspray! It keeps my curls feeling fresh and full.
Are there alternative health treatments you enjoy?
I enjoy deep tissue massages or sports massages. These allow me to relax and recover — and there is nothing like a spa day!
How do you take 5?
More recently, I have been taking morning walks to get my coffee and enjoying the outdoors. It is my time for myself before the day begins and allows me to clear my head. I also take five with pedicures. This allows me to slow down and do something for myself that makes me feel good.
A book that has had the biggest impact on your life? Why?
Mindset by Carol S. Dweck! This book has had the biggest impact on my life because it explores different ways we view and deal with various situations and relationships. This book taught me the difference between a growth mindset and a fixed mindset. The growth mindset says that if you work hard enough for something, you can achieve it, and you are in control of developing your skills and talent!
Favorite place to vacation?
My favorite place to vacation is Bermuda. I love to relax on vacation and the beach there is amazing. I have great memories here with my family!
Do you have hobbies, activities, or creative outlets that help keep you balanced?
I am a true Gemini, so when I am not teaching or training, I enjoy catching up on Netflix with a lighthearted series or good old rom-com. Also, exploring my neighborhood, especially during quarantine.
Who inspires you?
I would have to say my older sister Danielle. Growing up, I have always looked up to her. She is a hard-working mother and I am so inspired by her work ethic, discipline, and care for others.
Do you have a favorite playlist to listen to while working out?
When I am working out, I am either listening to a Zumba Playlist or 90’s R&B Music. There is no in-between for me.
Who would you take 5 with?
I would take 5 with Beyonce. She is such a strong woman and I feel like she would be awesome to hang out with!