Member Krys Rollins shares how she and her kids like to stay active, her motivations behind her healthy lifestyle, and the biggest takeaways she’s learned from working with FFC Oak Park Personal Trainer Keon Hackney.

You’ve been a member at FFC for about 2 years! What made you decide to become a member? 

I’m so proud to have been a member for almost 2 years now. I decided to join because I needed a little more than what I could do at home on my own. I had some basic equipment and a yoga mat that I would use at 6 AM before my kids woke up. My workouts and diet were good, but I wanted to level up.  

Also, I needed a fitness facility that offered childcare services and amenities that my kids and I could enjoy. The hot tub, pool, kids club and rock climbing walls attracted me to FFC versus other facilities, and we enjoy them often!

Related: The Benefits of Indoor Rock Climbing

What is your favorite way to stay active? Do you love weightlifting, group fitness classes, cardio, a little bit of everything? 

My favorite is a variety. I have learned from a variety of great teachers and physical therapists that the best way to stay active and get fit is variety – to keep challenging the body in different ways, working different muscle groups, and to hit the little muscles.  

My personal routine is alternating weight and cardio workouts Monday, Wednesday, and Friday with yoga Tuesdays and Thursdays during the week. I do Bikram (hot yoga) once per week on Saturdays and take a day off on Sunday.  (And, by day off, I mean watch the kids rock climb then we get in the pool and hot tub!).  Every now and then my schedule is too busy and I miss one workout during the week, and that is okay.  Zero guilt because my overall routine is good and my trainer, Keon, has taught me that when you are working hard and smart, occasional rest days are good for you. 

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You’re working with personal trainer Keon Hackney. What do you love about your training sessions with Keon, and what has been your biggest takeaway from working with a personal trainer? 

Keon is awesome. Keon has expert-level knowledge about the body and his workout regimens are very intricate. He includes the tiniest or even awkward movements that we do not generally use in our daily lives. He absolutely pushes me and always serves up a well-rounded, whole-body workout where I leave feeling great and never so sore I cannot work out again 1-2 days later.  

Related: Why I Work With A Personal Trainer

I have several big takeaways from working with Keon: mainly that a fitness regime should be efficient, diverse, and sustainable.  

  • Efficient in that I do not need to work out 7 days per week or even for 90-120 minutes per day. That is over doing it when one could be lifting heavier and working smarter. Keon has reduced my cardio time and greatly increased my time with resistance and weights.  
  • Diverse in that I should throw in these crazy, tiny movements he teaches me – which involve posing like a frog or getting on the floor and crawling or zombie slides and push-ups.  (Where does he come up with this stuff?!?).  Keon has incorporated a lot of overheard work as well as getting horizontal for me, and my upper body feels stronger than ever before.  
  • Sustainability matters.  If I am in so much pain I can’t work out again 24-48 hours later, chances are I might get injured and even bigger that it is not a sustainable regime for my body and I may fall off altogether.

In addition to getting horizontal and performing those crazy, tiny movements, Keon has me work out in socks only, no shoes. This is another way to hit those tiny muscles and improve our posture. Now, even on the days I work out on my own, I am continuing those awesome moves Keon taught me and working out without shoes on.  

Are you working toward any specific health or fitness goals? If so, would you mind sharing what those goals are and how your progress is coming along?

My goal was to level up, and I feel I am doing just that. My diet is pretty solid and has helped me keep my BMI in the healthy range since my early 20s. My freshman year of college, I blinked and gained 20 pounds. That was 18 years and three pregnancies ago. Today, I am 40 pounds lighter than that max weight and have sustained this healthy weight for almost 10 years now.  

I am proud of this progress, but I also wanted to tone. My genes dictate a body type that is curvier and a little more voluptuous than mainstream standards. I embrace my body type as my own and want to ensure I have healthy joints and bone density. I used to jog and do more cardio and had IT band syndrome consistently. Since working with Keon, I feel more toned, see more definition, and have minimal IT band symptoms.

What motivates you to come to the club and stay consistent with your workouts? 

I am a BIPOC female, mother and family nurse practitioner. I am motivated by feeling good, firstly, as it sets my whole day and my outlook. I am also motivated to support all women and people of color to feel good physically and mentally, with no regard for any single idolized body type.  

Both sides of my genetic tree have high rates of type 2 diabetes, obesity, and dying young of chronic, preventable disease. While I carry that genetic predisposition, I have the power to stay healthy and active to reduce my own risks.  I also see a lot of patients progressively gain weight during their adult life or progressively after having children to end up heavier than they were while pregnant. I am motivated to spread the message that with a healthy diet and working smart – whether that be at home before the kids wake up with little financial expense, or in a gym like FFC – we can reduce chronic disease, live stronger, and feel better.

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Post written by FFC Member Krys Rollins.