In Women's Health's fourth search for America's top personal trainer, we pored over thousands of submissions with a truly 360-degree lens. We looked for empowering personal stories, loud and proud herds of social media followers, savvy entrepreneurship, and savvier workouts. Our five finalists deliver—and then some. Help us decide who most deserves the title!
About Elyse Miller:
City: Centerville, Utah
Three Things That Describe Her
Country music. "It's my go-to for feeling at peace, even when I'm working up a sweat."
TRX. "I'm a bodyweight exercise girl, but I love that you can change the resistance by just walking closer to or farther from the straps."
Bare feet. "I'm such a minimalist when I work out, I sometimes even skip shoes and socks. I'm in and out!"
Elyse is the Olivia Pope of the fitness world: She gets things done quickly, efficiently, and confidently. "We're all equal—if someone can do something, why can't I? Why can't you?" she says. "I believe you can power through any challenge if you go into it knowing you can." In fact, that seems to be Elyse's mission in life: Seek out the greatest challenge, then find a way to crush it. (Case in point: "I heard having a natural birth was the hardest workout you could do, so I had to do it!")
That baller mentality is the foundation of Elyse's fast and furious workouts, which fuse high-energy plyometrics with bodyweight isolation exercises and no rest breaks. The busy mom of two eliminates obstacles we all face: time (her sessions top out at 15 to 20 minutes) and accessibility (she uses little, if any, equipment). And she trains her clients wherever they need: at local studios, in their own homes, through online videos—whatever your workout problem, she'll fix it (like we said, Olivia Pope). "I'm tough, but in a rallying sort of way. People say I'm too sweet to hate!"
Her approach isn't just effective; it develops assertiveness too. "The best compliment a client can give me is 'That workout almost killed me!' Those are the sessions that build confidence. And that's when you're pushing limits, creating change." (Want to get in shape, fast? Check out Women's Health's Ignite routine created by last year’s Next Fitness Star Nikki Metzger.)
Her Fitness Philosophy
Embrace your weight: "People can get too focused on fancy equipment and forget how effective basic moves are. When you can't get in a full workout, do as many jumping switch lunges as you can for 30 seconds. Do up to five sets throughout the day. They'll sculpt your lower body and rev your metabolism."
Make a move: "If you're debating a workout, do one thing to help you get there. Lace up your sneaks when you wake up, or put on your gym clothes before you leave the office. All the prep work can make a task feel way more tedious than it is."
Get proper fuel.
Get proper fuel: "Even short workouts require a lot of energy. Eating every two to three hours prevents crashing."
Head over to TheNextFitnessStar.com to vote for Elyse!