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Our Vital Performance Staff Is Stacked With Awesome Trainers

by Jordan Smith, NASM-CPT - December 30, 2021

Here at Vital Proteins®, we are passionate about what we do both during work and in our free time. What makes our team so great is that we wholeheartedly believe that wellness is vital. In honor of National Personal Trainer Awareness Day, we’re featuring 3 of our own Vital Performance™ team members who are certified trainers that bring their passion for fitness into everything they do.

Michele Sotak, Influencer Marketing Relationship Manager, Vital Performance

Lively: What inspired you to become a trainer?

MS: I have been an athlete since a young age, and I’ve always loved the way exercise and movement make me feel. I was awarded Outstanding PE Leader my senior year of high school and knew that I wanted to be involved with physical fitness on a higher level someday. Eventually, I studied to become a certified trainer so that I could educate and inspire others to live healthier lives and become a better version of themselves through fitness.

L:  How long have you been a trainer & what are your certifications?

MS: I’ve been a Trainer since 2009. In 2013, I became a Master Trainer for Life Fitness, the global leader of exercise equipment. I traveled the United States and Canada to teach continuing education workshops on trainer development, small group training, form, technique and more.  My certifications include Strength and Conditioning through International Sports Sciences Association, Group Exercise from AFAA, and graduation from the Life Fitness Academy.

L: What is your favorite thing about being a trainer?

MS: When people tell me that I’ve helped or inspired them. It’s rewarding to be able to share a gift I’ve been given with others.

L: What mantra keeps you & your clients going when the workout gets tough?

MS: During this year I’ve faced personal adversity and I’ve learned more than ever the importance of perseverance and staying confident.  Let go of the things that aren’t important, put focus on the things that are the most important, and your health is one of them! There’s a lot of things we are not in control of, but we can control our fitness journey. 

L: What’s your favorite workout?

MS: Functional Cross Training. I love both traditional strength training and cardio, so I do a mixture of both. I’m a big fan of machines because they ensure proper safety, form and technique. My favorite equipment is Life Fitness and Hammer Strength machines, especially their cables and jungle gyms because of the variety of exercises that they provide.  

L: What’s your favorite Vital Performance™ product?

MS: Vital Performance™ Cold Brew Protein Powder. It’s a clean and tasty product, I’m a coffee fanatic and it’s great for recovery.**

 

Bill Waltzek, Senior Manager, Fitness, Vital Performance™

L: What inspired you to become a trainer?

BW: I’ve always be interested in helping people at the gym or at work with their fitness and nutrition goals. I had been working out since 8th grade and saw great results. Wanting to help people was the motivation to get certifications as a trainer and continue my passion.  

L: How long have you been a trainer & what are your certifications?

BW: 17 years. I’m a Certified Personal Trainer, TRX, PN Nutrition Coach, Functional Movement Specialist and Kettlebell Instructor.

L: What is your favorite thing about being a trainer?

BW: I love creating energy. I feel that people hire a trainer to be to be inspired, motivated, and fired up and ultimately see results. I love when I can see their eyes light up and get excited about fitness while achieving their goals.  

L: What mantra keeps you & your clients going when the workout gets tough?

BW: It’s about getting your mind right—thinking about why you are here.  Think of your goals and don’t let go of that vision.  There will be days when it gets tough, and that is okay, but get right back up and continue pushing.  

L: What’s your favorite workout?

BW: I like strength paired with metabolic conditioning. I love to include kettlebells in most workouts. 

L: What’s your favorite Vital Performance™ product?

BW: I love the Vital Performance™ Protein Bars for an anytime protein snack.  I also take Vital Performance™ RECOVER after every workout (and sometimes during if it’s a grueling one). 

L: Any fun facts about your fitness journey?

BW: I started a fitness business in 2009 called ForwardFit. Originally, it had a physical location in Carol Stream which was open for eight years. I still train, lead virtual classes, small group sessions and personal training. Check us out here or  #forwardfit on Instagram.

Dan Caron, Manager, Vital Performance Influencer Relations

L: What inspired you to become a trainer?

DC: The ability to help people reach their fitness goals and the privilege of being able to watch the person’s confidence grow throughout the journey is what inspired me to become a trainer.

L: How long have you been a trainer & what are your certifications?

DC: I’ve been a trainer since 2017. My certifications include NASM, Precision Nutrition, Pre/Post Natal, Kettlebell Athletics Level 1  

L: What is your favorite thing about being a trainer?

DC: My favorite thing about being a trainer is watching people grow. And I don’t mean in size! Grow confidence, grow discipline, grow healthy habits and grow closer to their goals. 

L: What mantra keeps you & your clients going when the workout gets tough?

DC: It’s gonna be great!

L: What’s your favorite workout?

DC: My favorite workout is a full body workout based on primary movement patterns, including rowing, push-ups, pull-ups and barbell deadlifts.

L: What’s your favorite Vital Performance™ product?

DC: Vital Performance™ Cold Brew Protein. I love it because it tastes super delicious—to me it’s like drinking half-melted coffee ice cream.

L: Any fun facts about your fitness journey?

DC: Although training is no longer my day job and I don’t get to spend much time doing it professionally anymore, I’m forever grateful for the time spent with past clients, the smiles created, the relationships I’ve gained and the amazing career presented to me by a lifelong client.

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