Kari has been chosen based on her love for fitness, as well as her eagerness to spread the #MoveMoreFitness name and mission.
Please congratulate Kari Merrill on being selected as our July Ambassador of the Month!
All About Me:
By the time you read this I will probably be the big 4-0. I'm ok with it. I swear! I know I am happy with my family, my friends, my career (finally), my health, and my strength. I'm a good kid. I work hard. I am VERY determined. Give me a goal or an idea and I will work myself to the bone to make it happen. I like to think I am a good person to have on your side. I like to make people laugh and I LOVE to see people succeed. I am married to a guy that I really, really like. Love him too (obviously) but I seriously enjoy his company. A lot. We both work A LOT and our schedules rarely sync but we try hard to make the time to just hang out, make each other laugh, and enjoy the little things in life. He is a Police Officer so that's how we met. In Jail. (I love saying that). Really, though, I worked as a Corporal in Intake and he brought in people for me to book in. We had a mutual respect to each other and a small crush on each other without even knowing it. Became good friends and the rest is history. I not only have an awesome husband but he came with 2 bonuses. I have two step daughters in my life that I cherish probably more than they know. They are teenage girls who are so different yet share the same sense of humor as we do. We laugh A LOT in our house – and I love that. I work full-time in the fitness industry and feel that fitness defines me. It is involved in almost all aspects of my life. My job, my friends, and the hours of my day are filled with sweat, music, and creating innovative programs and workouts. I love to sit back and see people ENJOY the journey.
When did you start your fitness journey?
I started teaching Group Fitness Classes in 2004 as an outlet to my full time job. I knew I needed some positivity in my life because my current job as a Correctional Officer was turning me into someone I was not. I have always thrived on people's success and had an 'I'm going to change the world' mentality. So, naturally, I thought that a career in Corrections would fulfill those needs. Unfortunately, that was not the case for me. I soon found myself becoming cynical and my view- point on the world was changing for the worse. I started taking Group Fitness Classes and FELL IN LOVE with the instructor and the atmosphere. I thought 'Someday I am going to do that' and my brain went into overdrive with different ideas for classes. My very first class I taught was Cardio Kickboxing and I instantly fell in love with putting on that mic, mixing my own jams, and creating workouts that not only challenged my participants but were FUN. My love for fitness grew and soon I began to dabble in other modalities. In 2008, I obtained my Personal Training Certification with NASM and started my own business, Kario Fitness LLC, which had me doing in-home personal training. I could only fit a few clients in my schedule but the clients I trained from the start are my biggest inspiration to this day and they are still a very big part of my fitness journey. As the years past, I noticed most of my energy was directed towards fitness and not my career in Corrections. I was a sponge. Anything that was fitness related I wanted to be a part of. The more I dove into the fitness industry the more I knew it was my calling. In 2010, I was offered a part time job as a Group Fitness Director at a family owned club called Western Racquet and Fitness Club in Green Bay. The club has been open for 40 years but up until a few years ago mainly focused on Tennis, Personal Training, and Racquetball. My part time gig turned into full time quickly as we renovated and I was able to help design brand new studios including a dedicated Cycling Studio, TRX Studio, and Mind Body Studio. I was also able to grow the schedule which more than doubled in size and hire the most amazing, dedicated, talented staff I could imagine. Fast forward to 5 years later and I feel so lucky to have such an amazing job surrounded by supportive, fun, and high energy staff.
What inspires you to Move More and Do More?
The members, clients, and staff inspire me to keep doing more and more. Having a club that supports my ideas and mission means everything to me. We have members that are always on board with trying out the new and up- coming trends in the industry and are so welcoming to new members and are so hard working.
They inspire me every day to Do More and Move More and because I believe in setting a good example – they trust what I deliver. I am also inspired by CONNECTIONS. The connections I see people make while they are sweating make my soul happy. I have had the BEST friendships form in this industry and have seen so many rela- tionships develop over the course of my fitness years. I think that is fantastic. Plus - The connections I make via social media who love to motivate just as much as I do inspires me like crazy. I LOVE sharing workout ideas and tips. AND - My MoveMore Family. The empowerment and support inspires me to keep plugging away at making this world a better place with all of their help!
What is your favorite Workout?
Oh man..what's NOT my favorite workout?? I LOVE the TRX and have built a TRX Program at Western Racquet with the help of my instructors that love and believe in it just as much as I do. I love the education TRX provides and the results are more than just on the outside. I believe this is one of the best tools in the industry for functional training which increases strength, flexibility, mobility, and more. I also love the weight room. Hitting the weights is what inspired me
to become a PT – my goal was to get women comfortable in the weight room and not afraid to lift the heavies.
Another favorite (Yeah, I'm not done) is Cardio Kickboxing. This was the first format I learned to teach and absolutely LOVE the energy in that room when push play on my Ipad. Creating routines to high energy music drives me like nothing else.