To celebrate Mother’s Day, Lively connected with Courtney Marincsin, personal trainer, mom of two and member of our Vital Performance™ Trainers Network to share her inspiring story. This former lawyer shares her journey from the corporate world to the fitness world, and her story of becoming a mom along the way.
Lively: How did you get into fitness?
Courtney Marincsin:I am a lifelong athlete. When I was a lawyer—to blow off steam on the weekends—I competed in marathons and triathlons. When I suffered injuries, I turned to yoga to rehab them. This led me to my larger passion of being a fitness instructor. I completed yoga teacher training and from there I completed many more, including general group fitness, cycling training, yoga sculpt, boxing and bar.
L: What was it like leaving the corporate world and your job as a lawyer to pursue your passions?
CM: When you first have a kid your world is a little rocked. I was a litigator, and it was a little hard leaving law practice, but I went from one Type A thing to the next. What I love about fitness is I could customize when I work. As a lawyer, I was working all the time. When I had my first child, I dipped my toe into working in fitness. But when I had my second, I quit law altogether and turned to fitness full time. The fitness industry is fast-paced and is an invigorating, motivating place to work.
I actually wasn’t even looking to make the change at first but the gym I was at wanted an indoor cycling instructor, so I started teaching cycling and yoga for them.
Then, another studio opened up in the area and asked for me to be on the schedule. It grew from there, and has been fluid ever since. Now, I’m really down to two core studios I really love. It’s a full-time job, but I can make the hours fit my needs.
L: What do you love about working in fitness?
CM:I love being a motivator and I love making people feel better day after day. I’ve been teaching for nine years now. I also love constantly learning. When I was a litigator, I was always learning about something different. With fitness, every client is a challenge: they could be young or inexperienced, old and infirm or a star athlete. So, I’m always trying to come up with new ways to utilize core exercises like squats, biceps curls, and deadlifts to work best for them and how to inspire them on their fitness journeys.
L: How do you balance fitness and being a mom?
CM: I try and sneak mini-workouts in for myself wherever I can. I fit in a 20-minute Peloton ride or a 20-minute run, especially if I’m dropping my kids off for practice I’ll use that time they are practicing to get my run in. I use the time with my clients to lift.
L: Do you do any workouts with your kids?
CM:Both of my kids play travel lacrosse and soccer, so we spend a lot of time playing all those sports in the backyard. We also love to hike in Arizona and California. My kids are 6 and 9, and they both will go on like 10-mile hikes—they’re our little endurance athletes. Hiking really became our thing during early 2020 and the height of COVID. We’d drive the car and find a new trail or preserve every day and we would take the dogs and either hike or bike it.
What tips do you have for moms who want to get into fitness?
CM: Literally make it snack size, there’s nothing wrong with a 1-mile run or a 20-minute ride. Or, do something like 10 burpees five times throughout the day—you’ll get 50 burpees.
You don’t have to block off an hour and a half to get to the gym, there are so many workouts on Instagram you can do at home. There are plenty of bodyweight workouts you can do, but if you want to up-level your workouts, I’d suggest adding just a few things to your home workout setup. Invest in a kettlebell, two heavy weights, two lighter weights and a jump rope.
Most importantly, don’t be hard on yourself. Treat it as a gateway to fun. Fitness doesn’t have to be this whole thing, you just need to move your body. As a new mom or young mom, everything seems daunting. If you’re having a bad day, simply going for a short walk or 10-minute run can help you reset.
What is your favorite Vital Performance™ product?
CM: Currently, I’m loving RECOVER in Guava Lime. I throw that in a smoothie with spinach, a banana, a wheatgrass blend, almond milk and ice. It’s so refreshing!