To say she took Boston by storm just wouldn’t be saying enough. We’re sure that was the case in Colorado where came from and confident that anyonewho's taken her class at B/SPOKE or Barry’s would agree. We love Mooch, her charisma is powerful, it transcends every class she teaches and every cause she supports. From marathon training to ALS fundraising she has the kind of drive that simply put, gets things moving. While you might expect one of America’s most inspiring trainers has no limits, Christina really understands the meaning of self-care. We sat down with Christina to learn more about her road to Boston, thetransition to full-time fitness, self-care pointers and taking the fight to ALS.
We loved learning about all of your work/life experience before B/Spoke – can you share a bit about it? What were some of your favorite parts?
Sure! So I used to work with fortune 500 companies on their technology solutions, up and coming cloud platforms and refining their supply chain. Honestly, if technology is your thing, call me because I would 10/10 recommend the company I worked for… I was just missing something. What I miss most about this job are the people and the travel. I worked with some of the brightest engineers in the country at a company that ranked on the Fortune 100 Best Places To Work for over 5 years. Needless to say, it was the full package. I was lucky enough to travel every other week for clients, explore new cities, new client sites and learn more about the West Coast, but somehow always found myself up before the sun (and my marathon day of meetings) to check out new studios in the area, healthy eats, and the best places to hike.
So where does fitness instructor come in? Can you tell us the story?
How much time do we have here? Long story short, I grew up an athlete, found my love for inspiring and coaching and determined a way to combine those things into a cute little package with a bow. It hasn’t been easy, it hasn’t been all butterflies and rainbows but I'm more empowered and excited than ever to be here.
What has it been like transitioning into full-time fitness? What are some of the biggest struggles and what are some of the biggest surprises?
What would you say to someone thinking about making the leap? First thing I would tell them is - do it. You may fail, welcome it, embrace it, and grow. You may succeed the first time around, learn from that experience, what made it successful, and challenge it; don’t think that it’s easy every time. Build your foundation prior to taking the leap (and I mean financially too because it’ll take time to grow). Have a game plan, a plan A, B, C, D…Z, but don’t give up if plan A or B don’t work.
You made your way to Boston from Denver, we hear it’s an up and coming wellness mecca – how does it compare to Boston?
Denver is the sh*t. It’s a hub for brilliant people chasing their dreams and turning creative ideas into outcomes. It’s a young city full of transplants (although, some of my best friends were natives - hi, I miss you guys), the best beer you could imagine, clean air, and endless places to enjoy the outdoors (usually with your dog because everyone has a dog there). Comparing Denver now to when I moved there in 2013 is drastically different. It wasn’t until 2014ish that I started to notice more buildings popping up (and when I say popping up, I mean these things are literally being built in weeks), downtown filling up, and more people talking about moving to Denver. It doesn’t hurt it’s sunny about 360 days of the year and the winters are like a cake walk compared to Boston, it really is such a beautiful part of the US. Boston is home though. Boston is a place that never finds its way out of your blood. The history, the culture, the hard-ass mentality, that never goes away. Long-term goal: second home mountainside in Colorado - I’ll be baaaaack!
After having been away for awhile, what does it feel like to come home to Boston? Has the transition been easier or harder than you expected? Any advice for people making a big life move?
I moved out of MA when I went to college (and dating myself, it’s been almost 10 years), and somehow it feels like I never left. My biggest piece of advice for someone either changing careers, moving across the country, making any big life move is that there is never going to be a perfect time. Lay down a solid foundation, rip the band-aid off, and be confident in your decision. I knew when I moved back to Boston and into a pretty competitive career I would need to stay true to myself and give it everything I had so once I decided, I made a pretty broad plan of how I was going to do it, I held my breath and did it.
You were just nominated to be one of America’s most inspiring instructors – has that started to soak in at all?
What does it mean to you to receive this honor? I found out I was nominated on October 29th and just as that started to hit me, I found out a few days later that I was one of 12 finalists. I was truly shocked, surprised, honored, proud… really didn’t know what to think of it. I didn’t spend much time thinking about it either, rather just kept hustling, making sure my clients were training hard, working on my own personal brand and staying focused because I knew life wasn’t going to wait for this nomination to be done. I like to consider myself a little humble warrior but this totally rocked me and made me realize I may have made a good choice.
When we met last you were having some struggles with your vocal chords – feeling any better? What has this struggle been like/have there been any lessons related to self care?
Oh, the chords. It’s such a common thing in the fitness industry but I had NO idea this would be an issue for me. I remember starting at B/SPOKE telling the lead instructor, my body doesn’t stop…, but who knew the voice could. I was always that college student who would lose their voice after a night out or a track meet, but little did I know this would affect my dream job later in life. I (knock on wood) no longer sound like I smoke 10 packs a day, but it took me months of learning my thresholds alongside a speech pathologist to find a happy medium. Self-care in the fitness industry is one of the MOST (if not the single most) important. If you want to operate at 110%, you need to spend your off time taking care of your body, fueling your body and mind, and learning what exactly your body needs to continue this career. No pressure guys, still waiting on a product to protect the chords just sayin’
You have so many cool interests outside of the studio – can you tell us about a few of them and why they are so important to you?
So you’ll hear a little bit about it later on but I am a huge advocate for ALS and fundraising, which is what I probably spend most of my free time doing. My dad had ALS (which if you don’t know those three letters go ahead and type them into google and you’ll probably find more than enough information about why it’s so sh*tty) and I realized that if I couldn’t be a scientist behind the cure, I sure as hell was going to raise as much money as I could to help fund the fight. Aside from fundraising, I am working on an fitness app with a few friends that should hit beta testing in the beginning of 2018. I love writing about anything fitness (what up @fittcity!!!), learning about entrepreneurship, painting, drawing, anything having to do with my pup, Bubba, and food. I guess one would say I have too many interests? Try me.
If you’re comfortable, would you like to share a bit about your father’s struggle with ALS? How did your family deal with this and what did it teach you about family itself? We’d love to learn more about some of your efforts within the ALS community as well!
There is something so special about ALS community. Unfortunately, that community is growing but I have met some of the most amazing people because of my dad’s diagnosis. Although its one of the worst diseases (let me know if I’m bias) I feel fortunate enough to be part of the fight with ALS TDI. TDI is based out of Cambridge and it is the world’s first and largest biotech lab that focuses solely on ALS research. My dad was diagnosed when I was 9 years old, and at that time ALS was one of those diseases you didn’t know about until you had to. Through the years I did anything I could to bring ALS to the forefront, whether it was my 5th grade book report, my senior year project in high school, years of hosting a 24-hour spin-a-thon… really anything I could. I was introduced to ALS TDI about a year after my father’s battle came to an end and it was a really amazing way for me to use my maybe not-so-positive energy towards ALS, and turn it into something good. So today, whether it’s running marathons, riding bikes from Boston to New York, attending seminars, dumping ice buckets on every head I know… I am a very little piece of the fight to find a cure.
What are some of your upcoming goals related to raising awareness for ALS and how can people get involved? Funny you ask, who wants to ride bikes with me?!
Registration for ALS TDI's annual bike ride just opened yesterday (seriously, join Team Mooch). If you don’t like riding bikes, you can always volunteer your time, donate to ALS TDI, or just help us by learning and spreading the word. ALS TDI is in Cambridge, so if you’re interested go over for a tour of the lab… it’s pretty impressive. I am always finding new events in or out of Boston, running races to raise money, hosting happy hours… if you want to get involved, please don't hesitate to reach out!
We love asking instructors about social media and we think you have one of the most authentic and down to earth feeds out there – how do you keep it so real? How do you balance building your personal brand with creating content that is true to yourself
Social media is a new realm for me and has probably been one of the biggest challenges for me going into fitness (currently searching and accepting advice). I have my love-hate relationship with it and I’ll give it to you straight. I do what I want on there. I don’t plan posts, I don’t create content I can’t stand behind, and I don’t let it run my life which is why my account is probably a little less organized than most. But that’s me. I’m not going to create something isn’t true to “mooch”, my personal brand, or who I am as a human.
Any short term or long term goals you'd like to share with us?
Short term goals are all about making positive strides in this new city I can call home again. I want to give my clients the best classes, encourage them to lead more balanced healthier lifestyles, and inspire them to grow through taking risks in and out of the studio. Each day I'm figuring out what I love about my “job” and how I can apply it to my grander scheme. Long-term goals are in the making but I will tell you I want to leave this world a little better, brighter, stronger than how we found it.