Hi Genevieve! Please tell us about yourself.

I grew up in the Interior of Alaska – Delta Junction. My family is from the Ahtna Athabascan village of Mentasta but we ended up living in Delta due to a better job opportunity for my father. 

When I graduated from high school I moved to San Diego for college and graduate school. I lived there for 16 years before returning to Alaska in 2011. I am married and have a daughter, Katie. 

I’m employed at the Alaska Native Medical Center’s Primary Care Center as a Chiropractor. We have a Complementary Medicine Clinic that offers Chiropractic, Acupuncture and Massage Therapy services to our customer-owners. 

I am involved with my Alaska Native Regional corporation on the Board of Directors. I’d like to think I have hobbies but all my extra time is spent with Katie and trying to keep up with her. 

How long have you been working with us, and what inspired you to seek us out? 

I started working out with Figarelle’s in the summer of 2016. I enjoy group workouts and was looking for some extra motivation. I loved the bootcamps that Figarelle’s offered. 

I became pregnant shortly after starting with Figarelle’s and workout during my pregnancy. I took a short break after the bootcamps ended and started back with the small groups last summer. 

What are some of your favorite exercises, and why?

When I comes to movement – I love yoga. I haven’t been doing it lately and would like to change that. I love the movement and postures of yoga and the body-mind connection. 

It has taken me awhile but I am beginning to love weight lifting. When I start to see little changes in my body, form, strength, I find I am more motivated to keep with it. 

How about a few of your favorite muscle groups to train?

When it comes to lifting, I like lower body exercises. I’m a lot stronger in my lower body. Not so much with the upper body. 

What are some of your favorite ways to relax and unwind? 

Sometimes I just like to sit and read a book or just be in a quiet place. I have to talk all day to customers about their problems. I get exhausted from talking and like to recharge in silence – kind of hard with a toddler. 

Who or what inspires you?

When it comes to work/career, I am inspired by our tribal leaders who have and continue to advocate for the Alaska Native people. I watch them and realize it isn’t an easy job and you have to keep fighting to protect what we have gained in healthcare, business opportunities. 

I watched my grandmother in her late 80’s advocate for her people to have the customary and traditional lifestyle she grew up with. I hope that I have that same energy and passion to do this type of work into my later years. 

When it comes to health/fitness – I am inspired by the group that I workout with. Even when I miss a workout, I feel motivated to get back to the next small group session. Charlene is an awesome coach!

Your pushups are looking awesome, and I can tell you have been working on them. What has helped you improve them the most? 

Thank you. Someday it doesn’t feel that way. I’ve have a persistent shoulder issue for some time now. When I was doing regular yoga classes I felt I could do better pushups. I honestly think that the more I work my core and train the upper body – my pushups get better. Also – working on form versus the amount I can do has helped. 

Optimal health. What does this mean to you?

A healthy mind and body – which to me is spiritual, emotional, mental and physical wellness. 

What advice do you have for busy moms who want to start a fitness program but may not know where to begin? 

When I started back up at Figarelle’s I had to make a plan with my husband. He knew it was important for me to find a program that I liked and so on Tuesday/Thursdays, I work out and he gets Katie ready for daycare. 

We try to make sure each of us has time to exercise at home or at the gym. I would say find something you enjoy or a group/partner to work out with. If I didn’t have a set time and group to meet, I find I am less motivated. 

What exciting goals do you have planned for 2019?

Fitness goals – I would like to make one of the Summer hikes with the Figarelle group. I know it might sound like a small goal but to me (who is terrified of Alaska animals) it would be a check off my list. Do you all do any easy hikes – maybe I can start with that one!

I just got into the MBA program at UAA – I’m planning on starting that program up this summer. I’m a little nervous about the extra commitment but will have to find a balance with everything else.