Racked is no longer publishing. Thank you to everyone who read our work over the years. The archives will remain available here; for new stories, head over to Vox.com, where our staff is covering consumer culture for The Goods by Vox. You can also see what we’re up to by signing up here.
Welcome to Racked Chicago's search for Chicago's hottest trainer. Over the coming weeks, we'll profile eight smoking candidates who work at local gyms and studios. Then, once you've gotten to know everyone, we'll host a March Madness-style showdown in which you get to vote for your favorite.
All photos Barry Brecheisen
Please welcome the fourth trainer vying for the title of "Hottest" in Chicago, Nikki Metzger. Nikki is a Nike Master Trainer and whips clients into shape at ENRGI Fitness (where she's also the general manager) and the Nike Training Club in Lincoln Park. A fitness fiend her entire life, Nikki became a certified trainer over two years ago after stints as a talent agent and in sales, jobs that made her "miserable." "One day it just clicked," she said. "I need to do what I love and the fitness industry is what I love most."
Nikki teaches a variety of classes at each studio, from bootcamp-style high-intensity sessions (her favorite) to barre and dancing. And though she's tough, she tries to have fun with her students. "My personality is super enthusiastic (not in an annoying cheerleader way)," she says. "I love pumping up the class, making them laugh a little bit while working out even though I'm kicking their asses."
For new students, Nikki has a few pieces of advice. First and foremost, "It's supposed to be hard. If it wasn't hard, everyone would do it. The hard is what makes it great," she says, quoting A League of Their Own. Also, she likes to remind clients that they "started working out for a reason. The more consistent they are, the faster they'll achieve their goals." Tom Hanks' Jimmy Dugan would probably agree with that one, too.