Emily Kieliszewski, 28, of Lansing, uses her side gig as a dance and fitness instructor at Spartan Fit Center to empower others, as much as herself.
“Prioritizing my own care makes me better able to show up in meaningful ways in my personal and professional lives,” she said. “Fitness is a large piece of my overall wellness puzzle. I’m motivated to move because it makes me feel better physically, mentally, and emotionally and I’m grateful to share wellness through movement with so many other people. I have loved being an instructor for nearly ten years. It lets me be equal parts disc jockey, motivator, and teammate.”
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And like many instructors and trainers, much of what she’s being doing lately has been online.
“Since March, we’ve been leading people through full-body workouts from our carpeted living rooms, entryways, or in my own case, a tiny studio apartment,” she said. “The pivot to all-digital class formats was instinctual: our members are our family. Taking care of them is what we do. In these times of stress and uncertainty, we’ve opened our digital doors to welcome anyone to the fitness experience free of charge. People across the U.S. have tuned into our classes and whole families are joining us from their living rooms. What an honor it’s been to serve our community in this way.”
Kieliszewski, who works as the member programs lead at the Michigan Municipal League, said fitness has been a part of her life for as long as she can remember.
“Fitness is ingrained in my daily routine,” she explained. “My parents started taking me to our local health club in high school where we worked out together as a family and I’ve been a dancer my entire life. As a child, I often tap-danced down grocery store aisles. As time progressed, fitness became a way for me to manage stress and navigate through daily challenges and larger obstacles. Fitness reconnects me to my body, allows me to turn inward, and almost instantly puts me at ease.”
She said her go-to workouts include running, cycling, functional movement and strength training, Barre, kickboxing, and HIIT/Tabata workouts. “So often, we focus on what looks good instead of what feels good. Fitness is for feeling good,” said. “It’s a celebration of what our bodies can do, and each day I’m grateful for the privilege of having a body to move. I want others to know that forward is a pace, and progress is rarely linear; we should all give ourselves the grace to show up just as we are.”
She said that she loves food, but keeps things simple and healthy by sticking to meals that are quick, easy, colorful, flavorful, and satisfying. “I make sure to eat a balanced diet,” she said. “I eat all the foods I enjoy while fueling my body to work for me.”
She said it’s important for her to stay active and healthy. It’s sound advice for anyone.
“Fitness goes beyond the physical: it keeps us strong to embrace the people we love,” she said. “It gives us energy to keep up with our children or grandchildren (or in my case, nieces and nephews); and it teaches us perseverance to face many of life’s challenges – we know we can do hard things because we’ve done them before.”