Trainer named Best of Madison: ‘That honor was huge’

MADISON, Wis. — The Best of Madison winners were announced a few weeks ago, and for Madison’s best personal trainer, it means more than just a title.

Mike Onsrud came out on top in Madison Magazine’s annual rankings. He described the moment he learned he had won.

“When I got the email, I washing my hands between sessions and I got this buzz and I looked and I had read that I won,” he said. “I was screaming, I was running up and down the halls here.”

FROM MADISON MAGAZINE: Best of Madison 2022 Winners

Onsrud has worked in the industry for more than ten years. For the past two years, it has been his full-time job.

He called the award a huge honor.

“I am just so grateful that I have had so many awesome people who have supported me and helped me earn this,” he said. “It’s just really amazing to have all that support I have had since I started doing this.”

One of Onsrud’s clients is Jon Pennycuff, a surgeon at UW Health. After injuring his shoulder, he reached out to Onsrud to get back in the gym.

“He made sure that my exercises were tailored to protecting my injured shoulder but also strengthening it,” Pennycuff said.

Another one of his clients, Janice Knapp-Cordes, has been suffering from sciatica, a degenerative disc disease, and a pinched nerve. She decided to start strength training and has been making improvements since.

“I definitely feel stronger, but all the things that I am doing including training with Mike have really helped my back and my sciatica and the pain is much lessened,” she said.

“Strength training seemed like a good idea and I just lucked out with getting Mike here… his personality is great, he’ll joke around, ‘Give me one more you can do it, Janice.’ But he’s so extraordinarily qualified,” she added.

Onsrud isn’t just building strength and mobility in the gym, but something even more important.

“I just turned 41 this year and I have never felt comfortable in a gym setting, and something he has helped me with is my confidence so now I can take the value and exercises he has taught me and actually apply it and feel like I belong there,” another client, Alicia Santeramo, said.

Knapp-Cordes and Santeramo said they aren’t surprised he won.

“I think he’s fantastic. I can’t say enough good things to him, I recommend everyone train with him,” Santeramo said.


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To learn more about Onsrud’s training services, email or visit his Instagram profile.