Find your tribe.
Alex McKinney ’94
- Owner/director of services, Marathon Physical Therapy and Sports Medicine, Massachusetts
- Political science major
- Marathon runner (15), Ironman triathlon competitor (10)
“Find a coach/community—whether it be a running club or a fitness coach—to help you stay motivated and accountable, giving you age-appropriate and research-based training methods to reach your optimal performance and prevent injuries.”
“Fitness is defined by your strength (muscular power), endurance (cardiovascular health), and flexibility (range of motion at all of your joints and muscle elasticity/pliability). Therefore, you need to address all three areas to improve your fitness by targeting specific muscle groups, maintaining an elevated heart rate for a sustained period of time through cardio work, and engaging in stretching exercises like yoga.”
“Plan ahead to address all three areas throughout the week and be prepared for last-minute schedule changes so you don’t get derailed.”
“Find activities that you enjoy: cycling, swimming, hiking. Research has shown that enjoying exercise is one of the strongest predictors of whether a person continues exercising and maintains weight loss.”
“Try something new—Pilates or barre classes. Just keep moving.”
McKinney says he has three passions in life: he loves to learn, he loves to move and he loves to give.
“All these aspects have made my career a perfect fit as I don’t separate my personal from my professional life as it is all one life and I carry those passions into all the roles of who I am, a business owner, coworker/teammate on the same team, coach and fitness consultant for town athletic programs, spouse and dad, marathon runner and Ironman triathlete,” he said.
The field of health care has provided an opportunity to combine all of those passions to help others.
McKinney, who majored in economics, oversees research-based patient and athlete care, staff development and performance assessment, the planning of company and individual clinic budgets, outreach and partnership opportunities in both the medical and general communities. He and his wife, Jessica, who is also a personal trainer, started the business in 2004. They have it grown to nine clinic locations, 150 employees, providing sports medicine to more than 15 high schools and colleges as well as the U.S. National Rugby and Boston Cannons.
At Wheaton McKinney was interested in both law and health care so he maximized his liberal arts education by getting exposure to a wide variety of courses. He chose political science as a major because “I loved learning how our society functions and how we compare to other societies around the world,” he said. “And I coupled those classes with the science courses required for graduate school in physical therapy, along with economics, language, religion and others all of which I continue to draw from both professionally and personally.”
“I enjoyed the critical and analytical thinking as well as communication skills developed through the political science program, which have allowed me to gain further insight into the legislative and economic impacts of health care in society, both as a health care professional and a business owner.”
On his iPod for motivation:
- “Lose Yourself” (Eminem)
- “Radioactive” (Imagine Dragon)
- “Ocean” (Jon Butler Trio)