You know that one person on social media whose posts always speaks to your life and gets you together? You know the one who always snatches out your edges with the gut-wrenching truth?
For us, that one person is Masiel “Massi” Encarnación.
If you follow Massi on social media (especially on Instagram) you can attest that she is constantly educating us about fitness and how to live healthy. Unlike those Instagram “models” turned “fitness experts”, Massi truly knows fitness, is an instructor, and has experience helping people build the body that they want, all while creating healthy lifestyles.
We first became acquainted with Massi on Twitter and she was doing what she does best – being unapologetic and teaching us the real about healthy eating and fitness. We loved her Twitter content so much that we found on her on the ‘gram so that we could get that same Massi inspiration (aka Massi-spiration) on more than one platform. Since following Massi on social media, she has helped us learn more about fitness and healthy eating, and her posts keeps us motivated daily (if you ever need inspo, check out her Instagram Stories – trust us they are lit).
Massi began began her fitness journey about 4 years ago after getting out of a break-up. As we all probably know, break-ups can be hard and sometimes we don’t take the best care of ourselves after experiencing heartbreak. For Massi, she was not eating well or taking care of her body. After realizing she was gaining weight that she did not sign up for, Massi decided to get a gym membership so that she could get her body right, and take her mind off of things that was bothering her. It was at the gym that she discovered Zumba and absolutely loved it. She started going every week to Zumba and other fitness classes like CrossFit. Soon after realizing she was getting really good at Zumba, Massi’s Zumba instructor approached her about being a Zumba instructor. Massi studied and got her license, and then started teaching other ladies Zumba. After she started instructing Zumba, Massi began going to CrossFit more, hired a trainer, started lifting weights more, and became stronger. Women in her Zumba classes were noticing the changes in Massi and began asking her questions that she thought everyone knew the answers to. Without prior planning, Massi would began staying late after class, teaching other people what she knew about fitness and living a healthy lifestyle.
From there, Massi began to host bootcamps on the weekend and would invite the ladies from her Zumba class so that they could experience another type of workout that would be valuable.
Because of her 9-5 job and the travel that comes with it, Massi began to travel excessively and even moved a few times. She missed her fitness clients and her clients missed her, so she decided to create online training programs and content so that she could still be a resource, impact others, and reach more people.
Now through her website and social media accounts, everyone has the chance to “get fit with Massi” – and if you reside in the Bronx, New York area, lucky you because you can attend her Zumba classes or bootcamps.
Currently, Massi is still working at her 9-5 job in the non-profit sector, and her fitness brand hasn’t slowed down yet. Massi is a pure example of someone that has a busy career and life, but still makes time to eat healthy and workout. Because we know eating healthy and working out can be a difficult habit/lifestyle to start if you are not used to it, we caught up with Massi for some tips.
What quick workout exercises can you share for the busy professional?
As a busy professional the “no time” for the gym is real. However, you have to keep in mind that you can work out anywhere – seriously! You can work out in your living room, outside – literally anywhere. All you need is dumbbells, maybe a heavy medicine ball, and you can get a good workout in. What I usually do when I don’t want to leave the house (like in the winter) is high intensity training. High intensity training is perfect for the person who wants a beasty workout, but wants to get it in with a shorter amount of time.
If you are new to fitness, what do you think is best? Group workouts or doing your own thing at the gym?
For me, starting with classes (group workouts) worked for me, and I think it will work for others, especially if you are not used to working out. When you are in group classes, you meet different people, and they become your accountability partner. If you are new to fitness, I would not start by yourself (and that’s just my opinion). I think you should definitely start in a group or with a class. I think being around people is important in the beginning of your fitness journey because you want to create a lifestyle and a habit where you and people that hold you accountable are in it with you. I think it can be hard to lose weight and tone up when you are in it by yourself.
What other advice do you have for someone that’s looking for fit-spiration?
Use the internet! Follow me on social media and follow any other person that’s inspiring. I’ve personally met alot of people through Instagram. I actually started to going to my CrossFit class because of people I met and saw online. I think community is important, and if you don’t have the community of healthy and fit conscious people around you, the internet is a good place to start to find those people. You can definitely find people on social media that can inspire you every day.
Fueling your body from workouts and living lean takes work. What’s some of your tips for creating healthy, easy-to-prep meals?
First things first – get a Crock-Pot! I think sometimes we make things so difficult, but a Crock-Pot can make cooking easier. One of my favorite things to make in the Crock-Pot is soup. For breakfast, oatmeal is so cheap and it’s one of my definite go-to’s. A huge container of oatmeal at the store will cost you under $5 – so pretty much you can eat breakfast all week for under $5! I love to put almond milk, cinnamon, and seasonal fruit in my oats. You can also make overnight oats or stove-top oatmeal. Overall, oats are perfect for breakfast because it’s so filling and quick to make. For lunch or dinner I try to have complex carbs. One of my favorite things to make is sweet potato fries cooked in coconut or olive oil, add some paprika, and garlic powder. The fries go great with any protein like chicken or steak.
What are the top 3 things that helps you on your fitness/health journey?
First, I would say my shoes are very important to me and I take them very serious for the effectiveness of my workout. I believe you cannot have the best workout with old shoes. I have shoes for lifting, dancing, and running.
Next, I would say my foam roller is helpful. I have a ton of them at my house. Some have ridges on them, and some don’t, but the foam roller is perfect for me to roll out my muscles after my intense workouts.
Next, fueling my mind with positive podcasts keeps me going. I listen to all types of podcasts too – and not just those that are centered around fitness. I think having something like a positive podcast is important because if you are not good in your mind, your body is not going to function correctly. People ask me all the time, “how are you always motivated” and the honest answer is “I’m not”. But one thing that I do to combat this is I consistently feed positive things into my mind every day.
What is your philosophy on being fit and healthy?
“The comfort zone is a beautiful place but nothing ever grows there.”
I believe if you are comfortable you are not growing. I think you have to get uncomfortable to see change in your life – whether that’s in your relationship, career, or personal goals. I think to see a change in your body you have to do something different than you have done before. For me, getting stronger has come from the result of getting uncomfortable to reach my goals.