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Trainers Profiles

JAGODA KOCAN

Status Fitness Magazine Interviews Fitness Expert Jagoda Kocan
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I’m Polish. I was born and raised in a small but beautiful town Cieszyn, where I also met my future husband Andy. But later about that.

My mom is a physical therapist and corrective exercise specialist so my passion for fitness came from her. I was always active and took part in many competitions: swimming, running, triathlons – you name it, I was there. My dad was a teacher and passionate about travel. I took that interest from him, always wanted to travel and destiny brought me to America, but really it was my future husband Andy. Like I mentioned before, we were born in the same city. Only a month apart. Grew up together. And then split for 20 years. I almost married someone else. Long story short, Andy came back home and we fall in love instantly! Before I moved to the land of opportunity, I finished school with a master’s degree in business, working at the same time in the international office.

At present, I’m a mom of a two-year-old beautiful daughter and I work as a fitness manager, being in the fitness industry for 5 years. Also since that time, I compete in bikini competitions. I hold the title of Miss Bikini America Champion that I earned in 2020 in the International Fitness Universe competitions in Las Vegas. I also do online fitness coaching.

Age:
34.

City:
Washington DC.

Occupation:
Fitness Manager at Gold’s Gym.

Relationship status:
Married.

Fitness Goals:
My fitness goal is to win Olympia one day. Many years ago, I would never have thought I can do it, but anything is possible if you really want it and if you set your mindset on a right track.

Who is your trainer?
I train myself. I find it interesting to learn how my body reacts to different diets or exercises. Besides, I truly believe I can train myself. Most and foremost I exercise for me, for my happiness and competition were always for fun. While competing, I never expected to place and to my surprise, I won six of them in a row and got many overalls, and earned 2 PRO cards (Fitness Universe and AAU).

Training Plan:
Currently, I train (or at least I try) glutes/legs 3 times a week (Monday – heavy/ Wednesday – semi-heavy, more reps / Friday – single-leg exercises) and Upper body 2-3 times a week (Tuesday – shoulders / Thursday – back with chest). I also do cardio daily. I used to do a typical split routine, which I really like but now I’m trying something new.

Thoughts on HIIT, Powerlifting, TRX, Yoga, bodybuilding, others?
I’m a bodybuilding girl. All my workouts are in the bodybuilding style. I honestly prefer it the most. Even though I grow up with cardio but I like building muscle. I also enjoy good challenges that’s why every Friday I do HIIT. I love to combine my HIIT workout with some power movements like the snatch or clean, some bodyweight exercises, TRX, and KB/DB. Variety is everything because it is more fun this way and it develops your entire body, improves strength as well as conditioning! As a trainer, I love to incorporate all gym equipment or lifting styles in my own or my client’s workouts. I think it is important to make training fun. At the end of the day, it is our playground, it should be fun.

Nutritional & Supplements:
I try to eat all-natural foods. At the moment, I just do Vitamins and BCAA and sometimes pre-workout. I use to use protein powder daily but now my diet has enough protein that I decided I don’t have to use it anymore.

Special skills?
I have the ability to connect with everyone and make them feel special. I’m always positive and encouraging. I’m determined, confident and I lead by example.

What do your parents mean to you? What did they teach you?
I think family is everything and I think I wouldn’t be who I’m now without my parents. They created me and by giving me life, they also give me all knowledge they could. My mom taught me to have an open heart, help people in need and never ask for anything in return. She is my biggest cheerleader and she is the one who always believed in me. I want to be like my mom, I don’t know a better person than she is. Incredible strong mindset and skill to unite people. My dad taught me to always reach for more: more education, more travels, more sightseeing. Everything that you see or experience will stay with you forever. No one can take it away from you. That is your biggest treasure.

What separates Status from other fitness magazines?
True focus on competition fitness! I don’t think many magazines do it. I totally love it because it is not the commercial approach. I as a competitor can actually learn a lot just by reading your articles. I love how you are connecting with the audience on the events, and how you are involved and actively present.

What would it mean to you to become the next Status Fitness Cover model?
I’m ready to shoot! To be completely honest being on a Status Fitness Cover Magazine would mean everything to me! It would be a dream come true. I’m serious! I remember when I was a kid, my friend’s aunt told me she was on a cover of a Polish magazine and I was just in big awe and I thought, how cool it would be if one day I could be in one. That thought never left me. I was dreaming about being on a cover of a magazine since then. I never knew how. I tried to take part in the magazine cover competition and I got to the quarterfinals! If I could be honored with that privilege to represent your magazine and be on a cover, you will see the happiest girl it can be.

If you meet Status Editor-In-Chief, Rodney Jang, what question would you ask him?

  • What is the most valuable lesson you learned in life?
  • What book had the biggest impact on you?
  • What inspired you to create a fitness magazine?
  • What are your life goals?
  • What do you do first thing when you wake up?

6 things people would not know about you:

  • I was born and raised in Poland.
  • My first fitness passion was swimming, a lot of swimming.
  • I’m addicted to peanut butter! I seriously can’t stop eating it.
  • My name means Blueberry in English and my daughter’s name means Raspberry.
  • I got my two PRO cards when my daughter was not even a one-year-old.
  • I have a Master’s Degree in Business.

 Who inspires you?
I’m my own inspiration. I want to be better for myself. After giving birth to my daughter, I looked at my old pictures and thought: “I want to look like her”. Funny but it is true. Everyone looks different, has different genetics, likes training in different ways or eating different things. We never can look exactly like someone else, but we can better ourselves. I like to envision my goals, my journey and that is my motivation. That is what pushes me daily to be better, do my training, and stay committed.

Who do you wish to inspire?
I wish to inspire my daughter. I hope she can be unstoppable and get everything that she will dream of. I want to show her that no matter who you are, or where you are from you can be or do anything. I want to inspire her to do big things. I would also like to inspire everyone who does not believe in change. I want every person to believe that transformation is possible. And I’m not thinking about physical appearance, I’m thinking about a mindset change. Because a lot of time it is what stops us from acting, our mindset. If we believe in us we can all do big things. Through fitness, I want to give everyone the opportunity to feel happiness, fulfillment, inner peace, endorphins, and a smile at the end of the session. That is why I’m a health coach, to give them hope, tools, and guidance. I’m here to make a change, wanting the most for you to believe that everything is possible. And Impossible doesn’t exist.

Transformation story:
One of my client’s transformation story:

When you ask about transformation first thing that came to my mind is my former client Emily from California. I also trained her mom and dad. Amazing people and we achieved amazing things together! Emily was very committed even though fitness wasn’t her favorite thing. She always listened and pushed her boundaries. She did her homework but the results were coming very slow. One day, I remember like today; we were analyzing her measurements. It is important to me to see if we have any progress, numbers tell me everything. I remember the feeling of almost disappointment that another month passed and the change was not there. I stayed quiet and just asked Emily a question: “how does she feel? How fitness impacted her life?” and then I got my answer. I got so emotional that almost cried, I couldn’t be happier and proud of her. Even now, I have tears in my eyes. Emily confessed that through the process of working with me, she believed she can do it! She believed she is able to make the change. She felt more confident and she needed to go shopping for new clothes because she lost two sizes. I was shocked and definitely speechless. That day, I learned that mindset is everything and numbers just numbers. Thank you Emily for that lesson!

My transformation is super simple, also mindset change but many years back. Back in Poland, I was a more outdoor kind of girl, more hiking, biking, some running, and swimming. I have never been to the gym. I’ve always thought it would be boring – you just stand in place, look at the mirror and lift a bunch of steals, no beautiful sunsets or views, no new places to visit. The gym seemed to be boring to me. And then I met my husband, who was totally addicted to the gym and that was how my mental and physical transformation started. I wanted to be with him so I learned how to lift, he taught me everything and it became the biggest passion. Now I work out more than him. I compete. I coach others to transform. My body changed through the years dramatically, but mostly my mindset, and now I know I can reach for the stars.

Life goals:
Never settle for average. Always grow, push ambitions further each day. I want to continue to do what I love which is fitness but on a big scale. I also want to travel and work from any place in the world.

5 lessons you have learned?

  • Take what is given to you
  • Believe in yourself
  • Don’t look at others, focus on you
  • Be patient, whatever you are waiting for will come
  • Work hard for your goals

Music and artist you listen to while training?
I always listen to EDM and European DJ’s like Tiesto, Armin van Buuren, David Guetta, Calvin Harris, Avici, and much more.

Favorite books and authors?
James Patterson – I read probably most if not all of his books
Thomas Harris  “The silence of the lambs”
Phillip Margolin

But right now I focus on self-development more and I read “How to Win Friends and Influence People” and “The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership” as well as fitness books about behavioral changes.

5 most important attributes you see in a person?

  • Honesty
  • Optimism
  • Self-confidence
  • Presence
  • Integrity

Favorite Quotes:
“Champions do not become champions when they win the event, but in the hours, weeks, months and years they spend preparing for it (…)” Alan Armstrong

“If you can dream it, you can do it” Walt Disney

Photographer: Taylor Cifuentes

I am a content and talent manager of Status Fitness Magazine. If you are looking to share your story or get featured in Status, contact me.

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