My Weekly Workout: Anja Garcia

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The star DailyBurn trainer is also a pediatric ICU nurse, and she's got fitness motivation to spare.

(Photo: Daily Burn)
(Photo: Daily Burn)

Anja Garcia is an Equinox instructor in Los Angeles and the star trainer on online workout platform DailyBurn, where she designs intense sculpting and strengthening workout videos.

She's also a pediatric ICU nurse—and that role provides her with motivational tools that go way beyond music and shouts of encouragement.

"As a trainer I have the opportunity to encourage people to change their circumstances and make healthier lives for themselves before it’s too late," says the UC Berkeley graduate, who specialized in preventative healthcare. "At the hospital, I get a dose of perspective and realize that today is a miracle. I try to pass that on to my clients—to give it everything you got—because someone somewhere is fighting to just survive."

Garcia applies that motivation to her own fitness schedule, too. "I do a lot of the workouts with my classes, but I don’t get the same emotional, mental release as when it’s my own workout," she says. "It’s just as cathartic for me to workout as anyone else, and it keeps me sane and on my game."

Here's how the fit, well-rounded role model enjoys getting sweaty when her workouts are for her. —Jamie McKillop

Monday: I trained a client this morning then ran to the gym to take a spin class. I have to work tonight at the hospital, so I have to make sure to get my workout in. After I took a nap, I taught my own spin class. Believe it or not, this is one class where I get a better workout when I teach. Try talking and pushing as hard as you can. Man is that hard! I refueled with a liter of water and a banana, and went off to the hospital.

Tuesday: After working a night shift, it's hard to get motivated. I trained a client and taught a class this morning that was mostly coaching and not a workout for me. This afternoon, after my nap, I did one of my DailyBurn Inferno workouts called Cold Spike. It’s a crazy body-weight only metcon workout that always makes my muscles burn. I followed this up with a spin class and definitely earned my dinner. To restore, for dinner I made lean turkey burgers sans bun, corn on the cob, and asparagus. Healthy and delicious!

Wednesday: Today I taught a metcon class in the morning. After spending the afternoon getting work done, I got to take a kettlebell circuit class before I taught my own ViPR class. After a long day of fitness and work, tonight’s refuel dinner is grilled chicken breast and sautéed Brussels sprouts with brown rice. Yum!

Thursday: After an early morning trip to the DMV and a mandatory skills lab at the hospital, I desperately needed a workout. Today I did my DailyBurn Tabata POC, one of my new workouts that's about to launch soon. I’m so excited about it. After kicking my own butt, I taught a metcon class and kicked theirs. A good friend and I caught up over a salad filled with veggies and chicken...good for the body and soul.

Friday: I taught an early morning interval training class today, and then followed it up with my own workout on the track stadium stairs. I’m not a big fan of running, but I do love running stairs because it gets my heart up quickly and gives me a great booty burn. Another of my favorites are the Santa Monica stairs. After my workout, I refueled with a Daily Burn fuel protein shake and then took a nap in preparation for a night shift at the hospital tonight.

Saturday: Today was the motherload of fitness with a triple-threat morning. I took an hour-long Indorow rowing class. Rowing is one of the best overall calorie burning workouts. Then I took a circuit class, again it had rowers, and then I taught my own ViPR class. Needless to say I was completely spent after being up all night and working out for three hours. For lunch I had a barbecue chicken breast and veggies and then completely knocked out for a nice nap.

Sunday: Rest day! I work hard six days a week, so I make it a point to really give myself a full day of rest and recovery.

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