OM Spotlight: Brialyn Onodera


Meet Brialyn, a spunky 25-year-old mechanical engineer who spends her days atop Haleakala working at the Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope.  Weekends and days off you’ll find her at Om Maui Studio taking her favorite classes (Cardio Circuit, Brazilian Lift, and Yoga) and wowing her instructors with her inspirational commitment to herself.  “With Brialyn you can tell that the work has really landed”, says one of  her teachers, impressed by the gains in her strength, endurance, and body awareness. “She has the courage and will to keep going!”

We asked Brialyn to share a little about her journey– what motivates her, what goals she’s working toward, and what advice she has for others.

What inspired you to start working out?  Did you have a specific goal in mind? When I moved to Maui I wanted to do more than just lift weights at a gym, I wanted to be a part of a class that could properly motivate me to consistently work out and help me get stronger. When I was younger I did martial arts classes but had to stop after I received my brown belt, so ultimately I think I would like to return to that practice and earn my black belt.

What are your favorite classes at Om and why?  Cardio circuit, Brazilian butt and yoga. In the cardio class and Brazilian butt I feel challenged so that I am constantly pushing myself to be better. I like yoga because I noticed a lot of tightness in my shoulders and hips. Slowly I feel like I’m starting to get more flexible and it’s always exciting when I can hold poses I couldn’t before.

I think those classes work best to improve my overall strength and flexibility, and as a result I find myself enjoying them more than other classes. I also feel accomplished after a particularly difficult class, which improves my mood.

How has adopting healthier lifestyle habits affected other areas of your life?Working out has helped me to sleep better, become more motivated, and encouraged me to eat healthier overall because junk food makes me feel sluggish and slow. When I start the day by working out I am more capable of getting things done throughout the day, and during my workouts I feel a sense of focus and clarity that has expanded to other aspects of my life too. I found that working out is almost meditative for me and it has increased my ability to focus on my tasks more easily.

We can see the physical transformation on the outside, but has anything changed on the inside? I definitely feel more confidence in myself which in turn encourages me to keep a more active lifestyle to maintain what I’ve accomplished so far. Also working out in general makes me feel less stressed and happier.

Are you working on any new goals? What are they?  By the end of this year I wanted to be able to do 25 consecutive push-ups because throughout 2018 I had noticed that I would get winded after doing about two or three in cardio classes. Currently I can do 22 consecutively after doing push-ups every morning and every evening this year, so I’m thinking I want to be able to do 40 by the end of the year.

In yoga I ultimately would like to be able to hold a handstand for 10 seconds without having to lean against a wall, and to be able to clasp my hands behind my back in the cow face pose on both sides.

Do you have any advice for beginners or anyone ready to take the first step toward their own fitness goals? In my opinion it’s difficult to find motivation with just a large, general end goal (e.g. lose “x” amount of pounds). If you can set smaller, easier to reach goals that are more specific and are able to support an end goal it’s easier to start exercising and keep exercising. Also, I find it easiest to work out with a friend or in a class. I would especially recommend a class environment like OM because the instructors are very knowledgeable and can set the exercises at a pace you’re comfortable with and ensure you don’t hurt yourself.

Brialyn joined the Om Maui family in 2017 after relocating from the Big Island.  She took her first class the weekend after arriving and has been committed ever since.  By investing in herself, Brialyn has become an excellent example of how setting and achieving small goals can motivate you to work toward bigger things.  We here at OM are proud of everything she’s accomplished so far and hope to continue supporting her in everything still to come!!

Author: Om Maui

Om Maui is a wellness studio.