Kaisa Keranen has grown a loyal stream of followers on her Instagram account, inspiring individuals to reach the limits and broaden their fitness goals. We caught up with this ever-inspiring social media fitness sensation to talk about her personal fitness journey, finding balance, and how building basic forms of movement into your daily routine can make all the difference in the world.
Q: Can you tell us a bit about your fitness journey, and how you’ve come to where you are today?
A: My fitness journey started in my childhood. I grew up playing any sport I could get my hands on and eventually went on to do track and field at the University of Washington. Sports were always an outlet for me, a way to tune out the outside world and focus on myself. In some ways it has always been my form of meditation; it’s the time I feel the happiest and the most connected to myself. When I graduated college I was looking for a way to continue moving and found myself gravitating towards the world of personal training. I secretly always wished I was a cheerleader and personal training allows me to do just that. I’m not only encouraging people to live a healthier lifestyle, I get to be their cheerleader along the way. It is such a huge gift to witness someone’s transformation and I consider myself extremely lucky that I get to do it on a daily basis. These days you can find me on social media (@KaisaFit) sharing my health and fitness tips. The world of social media is a bit odd but it has allowed me to share my passion with a larger audience, and for that I am extremely grateful.
Q: For those who are unable to hit the gym every day, how would you recommend integrating simple movements into their everyday schedules?
A: I hit the gym about once or twice a week at the most so I am proof that staying healthy doesn’t mean you have to go to the gym! For me, it’s been all about shifting my mindset from working out to just moving. For some reason we tend to think that we are only getting a good workout in if we are at the gym and that couldn’t be more false, or more limiting of a mindset!
My goal is 30 minutes of movement daily and the form of movement just depends on how I feel that day and what I’m drawn to doing. Some days that means going for a walk or jog with friends, other days its doing a local fitness class. I don’t put any restrictions on my workout other than moving for at least 30 minutes.
Q: You posted something on your Instagram about finding balance in everything you do. What is your personal philosophy on the concept of ‘cheat days’?
A: Well I don’t quite believe in cheat days or even understand the concept truthfully. Why would you set yourself up to feel bad about a decision? If you want a burger eat a burger and enjoy it. If you are really paying attention to your body I bet the times you crave something the most are the times you are restricting yourself the most. I think life is all about finding the balance. I’m not saying go eat cheeseburgers and milkshakes all day, I’m saying work to find the balance in what you are doing. What works for me may not be what works for you but I’ve never been very successful at a diet or even a strict workout plan. I trust myself, I trust my body and I listen. Most of the time my body craves something deliciously nutritious but there are also times I just want a piece of chocolate so I eat it and I enjoy it and I move on. I don’t beat myself up about it and I don’t jump on the treadmill to try and burn off those 100 calories. All I’m trying to say is don’t punish yourself for the choices you make. Shifting my mindset to finding the balance in everything has allowed me to live a much happier and ultimately healthier life.
Q: If we were to open your fridge right now, what would we find?
A: Haha this is a good question! Let’s see - you would find a stack of prepared meals from NW Fit Meals. I am a huge believer that a large part of success comes from knowing your weaknesses, and a big weakness of mine is cooking. I don’t enjoy it and I’m not that great at it, so I order prepared meals from a local company and its well worth it for me.
What else you might find? Well you will find milk because my favorite dessert is cereal! Other staple items are string cheese, salad, apples, hard boiled eggs, carrots and that’s about it. Another weakness of mine is over eating, so I don’t tend to buy things that I’ll want to eat a lot of.
Q: What is your go-to workout playlist?
A: Ok people never believe me when I say this but I actually listen to slow jams when I workout. I have the same playlist on constant rotation that includes Anthony Hamilton, Donell Jones, Erykah Badu, Boyz II Men and a few more. I can only listen to it when I’m working out alone because for some odd reason, no one else seems to find it motivating!
Q: You’re a very busy person! What are some of the projects you have on the go right now, that you’re really excited about?
A: I definitely have a lot going on right now which is exactly how I like it as I am much more productive with a lot on my plate. There’s a lot that I can’t disclose right now but one major project I am super excited about is a workout series that will come out early 2016 - so stay tuned!