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Life & Work with Shanequa Gray

Today we’d like to introduce you to Shanequa Gray.  

Hi Shanequa, thanks for sharing your story with us. To start, maybe you can tell our readers some of your backstories.
Evolv U Fit Academy started from a hashtag on social media in 2013. I fell into postpartum depression after having my son, Ayden M. Gray, and needed a way to hold myself accountable for my own fitness goals.   

The hashtag sparked the interest of several individuals in the community who too needed accountability, consistency, and help along their fitness journey. The outpour of support turned into our first cardio fitness class “Prettygirlwerk.” With just that class I was able to spread her love for dance and fitness all over Dayton, Ohio, and surrounding areas. I expanded my business by later becoming a certified personal trainer, trademarking my business, and moving from online to a brick and mortar. Together with my Husband and amazing staff we now serve over 50+ members virtually or in-person monthly. 

We are proud to be able to no serve the community with not only cardio and toning classes, a virtual app, a personal gym, and a nutrition line. 

We all face challenges, but looking back would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?
My 8-year road in fitness has never been smooth. I mean, where do I start? being a first-generation college student? A single mother at the time? Working a job that didn’t align with the time I needed? Navigating my career path has always come with great hardships but even greater lessons! When they say, “If it was easy everyone would do it,’ they meant it! I’ve had my classes and ideas stolen, removes from spaces, taken financial losses, and much more! However, every single low has led to a high that I could appreciate and value even more. 

Thanks – so what else should our readers know about your work and what you’re currently focused on?
I consider myself a naturally creative and a source of energy. I create choreography often, whether that’s for a cardio class, wedding, twerk party, church function, etc. I’m not sure what I’m most known for but if I had to take a guess, it would be my high energy and ability to make others feel great! My ability to be empathetic, adapt to a room and bring my own personal style of teaching and positive approach builds safe relationships between myself and my clients. That mixed with my approach to making fitness a total lifestyle change is what often sets me apart from other trainers! We are living in a period where quick results often = instant gratification that often isn’t sustainable. I like to encourage the daily journey, mindset shifts, timed daily workouts, and daily affirmations. 

Can you talk to us about how you think about risk?
On the other side of fear is literally strength. I’ve never been huge on risk. I’ve always thought about the outcome first! I remember when My business partner LaSue Juniel (DFL Nutrition) told me to quit my job and run my business with her full time! Was she insane? I thought. The funny part of that story is a year I took the risk and haven’t looked back since! 


  • Freshman hybrid – $100
  • Junior Hybrid – $150
  • Varsity Hybrid – $300

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Image Credits

Lamar Pacley

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