WIP Fitness Team

Mary Kate Doyle - Owner

Mary Kate Doyle is a graduate of Boston College, mother of 3 beautiful children  and resident of West Hartford since 2006. To put roots down in the community, she joined the West Hartford Newcomers club, where she spent years as a board member and eventually  served as President. Prior to founding WIP Fitness, Mary Kate had a 10 year marketing career in Boston and New York.  Mary Kate has a passion for physical fitness and the balance that it brings to all areas of her life.  Her other passions include family, travel, cooking, skiing and good wine with good friends.

Laura Keever - Owner

Laura Keever grew up in Boston and attended the University of Rhode Island before settling down in West Hartford in 2004 with her husband and three children. She worked as a human resources professional for major law firms in Boston and Hartford, and also served on the executive board of the Moms and More Club of West Hartford for five years. When Laura isn't busy building forts in the basement with her kids, she enjoys working out, perusing Pinterest, cooking, and spending time on the beaches of Cape Cod with her family and friends.

Patrick DellaPace - Programming and Fitness Director

Patrick is what you would consider a "Reverse Snowbird."  Instead of moving South for the winter he chose the glacial temperatures of New England.  A native Floridian, Patrick grew up running barefoot on the beach, surfing tropical waters, fishing the deep sea, and living up any active outdoor experience he could get.  Despite his height, he managed to earn a college basketball scholarship where he played for two years before hanging up the jersey.  During Patrick's senior year of college he decided to tackle his first marathon and he soon realized that strength training was an integral part of athletic success and staving off injuries.  Since then, Patrick has continued to apply these strength principles in order to complete every run distance up to the 100 mile and to achieve better health overall. Lately, some of his favorite workouts include running through the woods and lifting rocks, logs, and various other natural debris to keep training fun and challenging. Besides living an active lifestyle, you can find Patrick enjoying adventures with his wife Lacey, drinking lots of coffee, and working with his church family.

Paul Ducey - Full Time Coach

Paul was born and raised in West Hartford.  He spent 5 years working at ESPN before dedicating himself to a career in personal and group fitness coaching.  Paul is an ISSA certified fitness coach.  He was a WIP Fitness client for over a year before deciding he wanted to be on both sides of the workout.  Now you can get an amazing workout with Paul whether he is your coach or your workout partner.  Paul enjoys all aspects of fitness from strength training to yoga and everything in between.  His hobbies include playing hockey and trying the latest beers from New Park Brewing.

Leah Szot - Coach

Leah fell in love with fitness at a young age. She would go down to her dad's home gym and curl 2.5 lb weights alongside of him, just barely out of a diaper; her dad has always had a large impact on her fitness career and inspired a lifelong involvement and love of sports. Leah plays every sport under the sun, with a heavy focus on soccer and softball.  

Leah started her fitness career as a certified personal trainer at age 17. During that time she had the pleasure of working with a wide variety of clientele from former collegiate athletes to former models. Before landing at WIP, Leah coached at Crossfit Bionic for several years. . Leah is currently in school to obtain her bachelors in Exercise Science, and ultimately finish her doctorate in Physical Therapy (DPT)

Laura Chinni - Coach

Laura moved to Hartford with her boyfriend and two dogs at the beginning of this year after spending the last decade in Wilmington, North Carolina.  Originally from Maryland, Laura moved to North Carolina in the fall of 2006 to attend school and swim for UNCW. During her tenure at UNCW, Laura set three school records in the 400 IM, 200 IM and the 200 backstroke. Upon graduating in 2010 Laura searched for new ways to fuel her love for fitness and found it in running half and full marathons and competing in triathlons. 

About three years ago Laura began taking boot camp classes and fell in love with the boot camp culture. It wasn’t long before Laura obtained her group fitness certification through NETA and began coaching herself. Laura is currently working as a swim coach for WHAT Swimming and has her NASM Certification. When Laura is not at the gym you can find her outside (when it’s warm enough) with her dogs, going to concerts and spending time with her family.

Johann Smith - Coach

Johann grew up in a West Indian Community in CT, he has been playing soccer and running track since he was 5 years old. Johann's father ran track in Jamaica and America and his mother played field hockey for the Jamaican National team, his sister ran in college and went pro in track and field so he comes from a very sports oriented family. HIs parents were dedicated to his sporting endeavors and they travelled all over the country competing. Johann eventually concentrated on soccer and went through the youth system in America. He was an All-American in HS and moved to England at 17 to play professionally. Johann has played on 5 continents and has been competing professionally for 13 years. He has played with the US National team from u-14 through the u-23 Olympic team. He has been training and coaching players since he was 20 years old. After returning to the US this past spring Johann decided to tackle a new challenge and to train the athletes at WIP. Johann received his NASM certification in 2017. 

Emily Sargent - Coach

Emily is a Massachusetts native who began her fitness journey when she started Taekwondo at the age of 9. She trained for 3 years before obtaining a black belt at the age of 12. She then went on to run cross country and play softball in HS. She has been living in CT for 3 years working towards her degree in Exercise Science at CCSU. Emily plays on the Division 1 softball team at CCSU and teaches pitching lessons to young softball players. Last year she became ACE certified as a personal trainer and began coaching total body workout and cardio kickboxing for students. She found a passion for coaching and helping others reach their fitness goals. Through her studies in Exercise Science, Emily developed an interest in the human body and how it is affected by strength training and nutrition. She seeks to share this knowledge with the people of WIP!

Emily aspires to be a collegiate strength and conditioning coach and plans to become a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) through the NSCA in February. When she is not training or studying, Emily enjoys outdoor activities, spending time with friends and being a member of her school's Exercise Science Club.

Jon Bates - Coach 

Jon and his wife settled in the Farmington Valley in the fall of 2014. There is nothing that makes him happier than seeing people achieve their goals. Jon holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Vermont, a master’s degree from Northeastern and his Level 1 CrossFit certification. In his spare time, he and his wife enjoy red wine, reading, golf and family walks around Collinsville with their dog Buddy. Jon and Christina just welcomed their first child a daughter Georgia.

Luis Hernandez - Coach

Luis is CT native and It was his lifelong dream to become a US Marine and serve our country proudly, on his 17th Birthday he begged his parents to sign the papers allowing him to join the Marine Corps with their permission, they agreed. He served over 6 years in the Marine Corps as an Infantryman. Luis faced his biggest challenge while on deployment  to Afghanistan 2009-2010; in April of 2010 (Easter Sunday) While on Combat Operations in Marjah Afghanistan he was hit with an IED(Bomb) on a foot patrol which almost left him for dead. He was hit in over a dozen areas of his body with bullets, glass, bolts, ball bearing, shrapnel in both feet/ankle/arms, legs, glutes, lats. He was Life flighted out from the front lines and sent to the nearest military based hospital in Afghanistan. Luis was unable to walk and his right arm was paralyzed, he was in multiple hospitals in Afghanistan and sent to Germany where he was held until able to be flown back to the USA after multiple surgeries.

After returning to his family in Connecticut he spent much of 2010 undergoing therapy and rehab to regain his life back, he walked with a cane and lost an enormous amount of weight and muscle from being hospitalized he has permanent nerve damage in his left leg and right arm, he has a bullet lodged into his thigh, a piece of metal shrapnel in his left knee, lower back, right thigh and right ankle which doctors were unable to remove. Luis still suffers daily from nerve damage and shrapnel pain. Due to the injuries sustained in combat he was medically discharged from the United States Marine Corps in July 2011, fitness was his passion and he decided to continue that career lifestyle by helping others as best he could, helping motivate people with his story and showig them that you can become whatever you want as long as you put your mind to it. Luis taught the first class at WIP Fitness on April 15, 2013 at 5:45 am in West Hartford. In November 2013 Luis became a WBFF Pro by taking first place in both Bodybuilding and Muscle Model categories.


Naomi is a Connecticut native who always had a passion for helping others and adventure. She grew up playing volleyball, hiking and have competed in Olympic weightlifting competitions.  She has always enjoyed learning new activities. Naomi graduated from CCSU with her exercise science degree and began her career as an exercise physiologist in cardiac rehab within the clinical setting. She always knew she wanted to experience life outside of Connecticut so in 2016 she decided to pack everything she owned into my car and drive over 1800 miles to Austin, Texas. Naomi continued her career as a physiologist there as well. The ideal Texas weather made it so easy to exercise outside daily, hike, adventure and explore. Austin was an amazing experience, but 2 years later the New England in her was ready for another adventure. I truly believe that discipline, good work ethic and a vision can get you anywhere.