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Hottest Trainer Contestant #11: Meliza Fernandez

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Welcome to Racked New York's search for New York City's hottest trainer. Over the coming weeks, we'll profile sixteen smoking locals—fitness experts who not only look hot in spandex, but can make you look amazing too. Once you've gotten to know everyone, we'll host a March Madness-style showdown in which readers vote for their favorites. Let the games begin!

Photos by Sean Gomes for Racked

The Vixen Workout exploded onto the New York fitness scene earlier this year, and Meliza Fernandez is one of the top ambassadors of the Miami-based hip-hop dance workout. Her background in professional dancing and musical theater makes her the perfect leader for wedged sneaker-clad, lipstick-wearing students who just want to get their fierce on.

"To see woman come together and support one another while unapologetically embracing their fierceness? Doesn't get better than that," Fernandez told us about her classes. "But more than the physical transformation, it's the emotional transformation that gets me. To see their confidence build and even to see how the way they walk changes, that really moves me." Read on to learn about her laid-back gym attitude, her athletic role model, and the three things you'll always find in her gym bag.

Fitness advice you swear by, in five words or less.
Stay Hungry Live Fierce—the line that all of the Vixen Army live and swear by.

What's the biggest misconception about your sport?
That we don't work hard or that it's not challenging enough.

Who's your athlete role model
Misty Copeland—her body and movement are both a work of art. Ballerinas are athletes in my eyes.

Gym selfies: yay or nay?
Totally yay! We encourage a post-Vixen selfie at the end of each class.

If you weren't a trainer, you'd be...
On Broadway.

What's always in your gym bag?
Black leggings, deodorant, and almonds.

Biggest gym pet peeve?
I'm not easily peeved!

· @meliiiiimel [Instagram]
· Meliza Fernandez [Facebook]
· Vixen Workout [Official website]
· All Hottest Trainer 2014 Contestants [Racked NY]