This month we are highlighting Talia in our ‘Instructor Spotlight’ series. A marketing strategist by day, Talia’s life-long fitness journey has led her to blasting Hip Hop in the R/DE room, motivating everyone who walks through the studio doors. Catch ANY of her classes from May 13 – May 19 with a special $15 drop-in credit available directly on our website HERE.
Hi Talia! Thanks for joining us today. To kick things off, could you tell us a little bit about your personal fitness journey and what led you here today?
Okay the cliff notes, folks. Growing up my parents put me through soccer, dance, cheerleading, softball, volleyball, and basketball. Basketball was the sport that taught me A LOT which makes sense as I dedicated 10 years to it. It taught me hard work, discipline, respect, problem-solving, decision-making, teamwork…the list goes on and on. Playing basketball without a doubt ignited my passion for fitness and an interest in coaching.
Fast forward, during the last two years of college at the Fashion Institute of Technology in NYC, I discovered kickboxing and did it regularly, to the point where I was in a good spot to become an instructor. Last minute, I backed out of the idea to solely focus on scoring a 9-5 corporate America job. Months before I moved to Boston, I interviewed for a corporate job at an indoor cycling company in NYC and riding in a class was part of the interview. Man, I was AWFUL, hah. BUT I kept going because I’m always up for a challenge. Since that interview (you guessed it – I didn’t get the job), I continued to ride and seek out studios in Boston when I moved here in 2014. A year after living in Boston, I worked at a studio to keep myself busy and make extra income. One day, we were down instructors and I thought to myself, how about I audition? I can be a sub and teach here and there. In that moment, I knew this was the opportunity to start teaching fitness and explore this path of coaching. I’ve only been teaching for three years but my goal is to be in the fitness/wellness industry full-time. Stay tuned.
Very cool that you’ve taken what you learned from playing sports as a kid into other phases of your career. What is the best piece of advice you received once you began teaching?
Starting out as an instructor in 2015, I was advised, “Teach the class you’d want to take.” It’s the best piece of advice I’ve ever received and it’s something I’ve shared with aspiring fitness instructors.
What is your favorite thing that a client has ever said to you?
After one of my classes, a woman once thanked me for treating her like everyone else in the room. This woman – who then I found out had cerebral palsy – told me most people treat her differently because of her disability. But for those 45 minutes, she felt like she was everyone else. Words cannot describe how I felt hearing that. All I know, I want everyone in my class to feel included and important.
Wow that must have been a very powerful moment at an instructor. I hear your full time job is very different – could you tell us a little about it?
I’m a Lifecycle Marketing Strategist for an online school that offers high school diplomas, college degrees, career diplomas, certificates, etc. I assist in campaign strategy, implementation and analysis. Optimizations are my main area of focus and are determined by email marketing trends, campaign performance, and data. I also code our email campaigns which I’ve become a big fan of after teaching myself HTML! Every day, it feels like I’m solving a puzzle and the nerd in me LOVES that.
So when you’re not working – or working out – where would people find you?
Living in Eastie with my boyfriend and pup, Darla, you can find us at Cunard Tavern as it’s one of our favorite spots, sipping on their Roasted and Confused cocktail. When summer comes, we’ll be at ReelHouse enjoying the skyline views.
Marketing professional, fitness professional, or personally – who inspires you the most?
Oof, this is tough. There are a lot of people who inspire me, my fellow B/SPOKE instructors, various Boston fitness professionals, my parents, etc. The one thing that all of these people have in common is their hustle and enthusiasm for their work truly inspires me and pushes me to find my own passions.
Okay, now for some quick fire questions. What’s your go-to song or artist to play in your classes at the moment?
If all else fails, Drake or Kanye. If not that, 90’s alternative throwback.
What’s the one thing about you that surprises people?
People are shocked to hear that I played basketball, competitively. I may not come off as a baller but when I step into that R/DE room, I like to think a little bit of that ball player comes out.
Check out Talia’s classes on the live schedule by clicking HERE.