Personal Trainer and Head of Strong Academy 

Casey Zavaleta

Training changes every aspect of life for the better. It transformed me from a self-conscious and insecure girl to a confident, educated and empowered human.

I was a dancer for most of my life, and have always loved movement. However, for many years I felt intimidated by the gym and avoided it. I thought running was something I was supposed to do even though I hated it. I experienced aches and pains that I assumed were normal and had no choice but to tolerate. I lacked any real knowledge of nutrition. When paired with intense insecurity about my body, I ended up battling various types of eating dysfunction.

Fast forward to today: Empowered by education about functional resistance training and whole food, I am happier and healthier than I have ever been. Virtually every aspect of my life has changed for the better.

I am a trainer because I want to help others feel strong and move well for life, fueled by quality food that they aren’t afraid of. No matter what facet of your life is holding you back, I believe that strength training can be medicine for it. Training changed my life. Now, I want to help show you how it can change yours.

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How do you start your day?

I start my day screen-free with a large glass of warm lemon water. I try to give myself 30 minutes of calm every morning before I start looking at my devices. Then, I make myself an almond milk latte (to go!) and hussle off to the gym on my bike. I love seeing my clients at the gym bright and early every morning. Their dedication to get workouts in before work inspires me!

Name your favourite book and why?

The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck. I tend to be a perfectionist, and this book helped remind me that it’s OKAY when things (big and small) don’t go as planned. The struggles that we face make the highs in life that much better. What’s important is YOUR perspective, YOUR reality, and how YOU choose to handle the shit that will inevitably happen to you! The author of this book is also hilarious, which makes it a quick and fun read.

Describe a perfect day off.

A perfect day off starts by being woken up by the sun (not an alarm) with my puppy licking my hand. There would be no notifications or appointments on my mind. From there, as long as I’m with my husband, by the water, doing something that involves moving my body and eating fresh delicious food, I’m in heaven.

Top life hacks?

  • WAZE because Toronto traffic makes my head hurt.
  • Rub denim on deodorant stains to get them off black clothes!
  • My foam roller that vibrates. It’s a game changer for my hammies. \
  • Use a Magic Eraser on white shoes to keep them looking good as new!


ACE Certified Personal Training | ACE Fitness

Lower Body Movement and Mobility | Agatsu
Kettlebell Certification | Agatsu

Level 1 Coach | Darby Training Systems

Mindfulness Fundamentals | Mindful Schools

BSc Neuroscience | Indiana University

Barbell Strength, DTS

Fitness Nutrition Specialist, ACE

Nutritional Therapy Practitioner, NTA