Latina magazine‘s latest cover star Massy “MankoFit” Arias may beast through workouts on Instagram on the regular but it took more brains than brawn to amass her 2 million follower count.
When her brother was diagnosed with Burkitt lymphoma, Arias, who immigrated to the U.S. in 2004, split her time between school at Queens College in Queens, New York with being at the hospital. She soon found herself pouring up on alcohol, smoking cigarettes and suffering psychologically from an emotionally abusive boyfriend. The emotional stress and consulting a psychologist signaled a lifestyle change, where Arias turned to exercise to combat her depression.
She dove into personal training books and began sharing her fitness journey on her social media accounts, flexing the toned physique and impermeable confidence that her healthy lifestyle has afforded her. With a celeb clientele that includes La La Anthony and B.o.B. and a forthcoming collaboration with TRU supplements, Arias is also uplifting followers through 30-day programs that not only provide a cardio boost but a mental one, as well.
“It’s such a great blessing to be able to help my own people and those who have gone through bad experiences,” she told Latina. “Most of my followers are young Latinas and black girls. It’s amazing to be able to use my platform in a genuine way and inspire people.”