“I took this challenge and broke it down into goals. What did I want to learn from this experience? How would this challenge make me grow and learn when it comes to nourishment and physical activity? “
- Pina Prainito
Pina Prainito: Bio Individuality
Pina Prainito had a remarkable Dynamic Duo by any accounting. Training with TJ Lynch, she was the 3rd highest scoring individual in the challenge. What was even more remarkable was how she did it. Pina added 6 pounds of lean muscle mass – 6 pounds! – while losing nearly 5 pounds of body fat. Meaning that she actually gained a small amount of weight while remaking her body composition – the precise goal of the challenge. Pina graciously agreed to be interviewed by Paul Smith, which follows below.
We want to thank Pina Prainito for her wonderful insights into her Fitness Incentive experience and her achievements in the Dynamic Duo fitness challenge. We think you’ll agree that her observations are both fascinating and illuminating.
F.I.: I know you have been a member for some time. When did you first join?
Pina: I first joined Fitness Incentive in 2006. At the time, I was looking for a place I could feel comfortable and call a second home. I knew from the moment I entered; this was the place I wanted to be. Fitness Incentive has helped me in more ways than I could have ever imagined. I have grown to love this community and family as if it were my own.
F.I.: What was it that made Fitness Incentive an attractive option for you?
Pina: I was attracted to Fitness Incentive because it was a place that focused on the whole person. It taps into every sense. Whether you are looking to take classes, strength train, take yoga or Pilates, or just have a chat with your friends at the café, Fitness Incentive offers all these services and much more. You are always welcomed through the door with a smile, and the staff always goes above and beyond to help their members.
F.I.: What kinds of activities have you pursued over time? (Aerobics classes, cardio machines, strength training, etc.)
Pina: Over the years, I have pursued strength training machines, personal trainers, cardio machines, yoga classes as well as spin classes. I must admit, once I finished my workouts, I was ready for the rest of my day. I felt accomplished and complete.
F.I.: Was the Dynamic Duo fitness challenge that just concluded your first contest at Fitness Incentive (we’ve been conducting them regularly since 2009)?
Pina: Yes! This was my first contest ever at Fitness Incentive. I’d marveled over the wall at the contest winners over the years, but I would have never imagined that I would place in this particular contest.
F.I.: What was it about this particular challenge that interested you?
Pina: Well, when I was first approach by my trainer TJ, I thought, why not? It is a great way to get back in the game after the pandemic and show the resilience that lies inside of me. I was ready for the challenge, especially after this very trying year.
F.I.: How did you come to train with TJ Lynch?
Pina: I have been training with T.J. for almost two years. I find that he understands the mind-body connection and can tap into each person’s individual needs. Each body composition is completely different. I truly believe T.J. understands how to train a person’s mind and body to achieve true optimal results.
F.I.: The true goal of the contests is actually an improvement of body composition rather than simple weight loss, and your results precisely reflect this goal. You added 6 lbs. of lean muscle mass – the most of anyone in the contest – and lost 4.7 lbs. of fat. So overall, you actually had a small weight gain while successfully rebalancing your body composition. How did you and TJ Lynch develop a plan to achieve this goal?
Pina: We decided to incorporate two days of strength training with an additional two to three days of individual cardio/strength training that I would do on my own time.
F.I.: What was your approach? What things (i.e., exercises, diet, etc.) did you do to achieve your goal?
Pina: I believe in bio-individuality. I took this challenge and broke it down into goals. What did I want to learn from this experience? How would this challenge make me grow and learn when it comes to nourishment and physical activity?
Could I achieve maximum results without overtaking my everyday life and career? The answer to all those questions was YES!
First and foremost, I did not focus on my weight. There was no self-sabotaging during the challenge or anytime thereafter. I focused on nutrition as a means to nourish my body, so I was able to strength train at full throttle.
Here is where bio-individual nutrition came into play. My meals were focused on protein, fiber, fat, and good sources of carbohydrates. Since I have a Functional Nutrition background, I understood what kinds of foods to incorporate before, during, and after my workouts.
As the challenge progressed and I was gaining weight, my body composition started to change. This can be very challenging for some people that are looking to lose weight because they want to see the number on the scale continuously go down. However, the scale is only a means of measure. I was going in the opposite direction.
Real results lie in the percentage of body fat and muscle. My gut health was optimal, and my mental clarity became increasingly sharper as the weeks quickly went by.
At the end of the challenge, I had no idea that I placed third. I was rather shocked. I did not view this as a challenge but as an incentive to continue my journey on good health and well-being. My results paid off.
The Dynamic Duo experience was extremely positive for me. I met a great partner, Michelle Matthews. I could not have done it without her support and positivity. I will continue to train alongside her. My trainer, TJ, will always be a part of my training life. I know when I walk out the Fitness Incentive doors on a day that I trained with T.J., I have had a fantastic workout. My day is complete, and I am ready to take on any challenge that comes along my way.
F.I.: Would you participate in another challenge? What would you say to someone considering a challenge for themselves?
Pina: Absolutely. I will participate in every Dynamic Duo Challenge or any challenge that comes along my way. It is a great motivator, and it shows that you can bring yourself to unknown limits. All you need is perseverance and grit. From there, you are limitless.
Paul Smith manages Marketing and Member Communications at Fitness Incentive. He is a frequent contributor to Fit to Print.