Name: Hunter Mitchell 

Age: 31

Occupation: Account Executive at Cornerstone Systems

Family: Wife (KayLeigh) and dog (Birdie)

Favorite Ways to Stay Fit: I love group HIIT classes, weightlifting at ATC, tennis, pick-up basketball, walking 9 holes of golf after work, and taking my dog Birdie for walks around town. 

Where I Work Out: ATC Fitness, Shred 415, and Sol Hot Yoga & Pilates Studio 

What Started My Fitness Journey: After a tough work schedule issue and a life change, I decided to try out the weight room with my roommate after never really lifting before. It turned into a daily routine, obsession, and a necessary part of my life. I moved to Memphis in 2017 and wanted to supplement the weightlifting with something else, so I started taking Inferno Hot Pilates classes after a teacher invited me. I then got hooked on the hot room, group energy, and the fun I was having. Since then, I have incorporated group fitness classes such as Shred 415 and Hot Pilates into my weekly workout routine along with weight training. 

How I Stay Motivated: It is all about keeping a routine and trusting the process. The hardest part is showing up for yourself, even on your worst days. I also follow many fitness trainers and gurus on Instagram that help with my accountability. One of the Rock’s favorite quotes that I love is: “Success isn’t always about ‘greatness’, it’s about consistency… Consistent, hard work gains success.”

What I Eat to Stay Healthy:  I make breakfast tacos or oatmeal and bring my lunch (usually chicken, rice, and veggies) to the office. My wife cooks a healthy dinner almost every night. I also like to eat peanuts, apples, beef jerky, and granola/protein bars as a snack. My wife meal preps lunches for both of us throughout the week, so that definitely helps us both stay on track. 

How I Curb Cravings: I am bad about wanting to have a bowl of cereal at night before bed or a few snacks when I am bored watching TV. I tell myself and others, “If you don’t want it to be tempting you, then don’t put it in your house. Out of, sight out of mind.”

My reward is… When I have had a great week in the weight room and I kill my HIIT classes all week, I treat myself to a cheat meal—wings, pizza, and beer.

I’ve always wanted to try… Ninja Warrior Obstacle Course and a Stadion Spartan Race

My secret to staying fit… It’s all about routine—taking BCAAs and protein before and after workouts, weekly meal prepping, using a fitness tracker to optimize the strain and recovery, and staying accountable to my wife and workout partners. I wouldn’t say that it is a secret, but working out, eating healthy and taking care of my body has become a major part of my lifestyle. 

My favorite piece of equipment: Kettlebell and WHOOP Band 

What I Do to Stay Injury Free:I go to a sports massage therapist at Lifetime Fitness, use my foam roller, and do yoga and stretching. My favorite tool is the massage gun.

It’s not always easy… The COVID-19 Pandemic made things very tough on me when we had the initial lockdown in March/April for 50+ days. The gyms were closed and no group sessions were happening. It was very tough to find the motivation, positive attitude, and the will to want to work out, especially when living in an apartment. It really had a negative impact on my life and mood. I was so used to going to the gym every day and having all that equipment readily available to me. I told myself when gyms opened back up, I would never take another gym day for granted and would always give it 100%. 

Favorite Workout Song: WHATS POPPIN – Jack Harlow 

Advice to Others on Their Fitness Journey:  If you are just starting or trying to find a new spark, do fitness activities you enjoy. Try group fitness sessions where the energy is contagious and everyone has positive attitudes and like-minded goals. If you are trying grow and continue on the path you are on, then consistency is key. You have to put in the work for months before the true results come. Best thing I can leave you with is a quote: ”Success isn’t owned. It’s leased, and rent is due every day.” –JJ Watt

Photo by Tindall Stephens