Our Team

Personal Trainers In Novi | Strength Coaches

David Lawrence, Strength Coach

DAVID LAWRENCE, Head Strength Coach

David is one of the premier and most widely recognized strength and conditioning coaches in the United States. He has personally trained literally hundreds of professional athletes in over 20 sports, including Nick Bellore of the Detroit Lions, Aaron Palushaj of the Philadelphia Flyers, and Super Bowl Champions Frank Zombo of the Kansas City Chiefs and Haloti Ngata of the Philadelphia Eagles. David’s passion and hands-on coaching ensures results, David sets the bar and brings that drive to the team at MECA, the premiere personal training and sports performance facility in Michigan.

    • Founder of Michigan Elite Conditioning for Athletes (MECA)
    • Former Head Strength and Conditioning Coach, Concordia University Ann Arbor
    • National Team Conditioning Coach, Guyana Women’s National Football Team

READ MORE


Rachel Johnston, Novi Personal Trainer

RACHEL, Assistant Head Strength Coach

Rachel’s personal experience with how strength training can help overcome injuries was her primary motivation to pursue strength training as a career. After graduating in 2016 with a Bachelor of Science in Biology with an emphasis in Exercise Science from Concordia University, Rachel became an intern at MECA until she became a permanent and valued part of the staff.

    • Certified Personal Trainer (CPT)
    • Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS)
    • Working toward Poliquin® International Certification Program (PICPTM) Levels 1 & 2
    • Kilo APD level 1
    • Kilo APD level 2

READ MORE


matt sobeck strength coach

MATT, Assistant Strength Coach

Matt has known MECA founder David Lawrence most of his life, growing up with him in Kalamazoo, Michigan. While Matt earned a degree in Accounting, it wasn’t until after college would he find his passion in training. Matt truly enjoys making a difference in his client’s life, likely that’s why Matt’s clients continue to train with him month after month and year after year. Matt is detail oriented and is always making sure that his clients are getting the most out of each rep in each set.

    • Bachelor’s Degree in Accountancy with a Minor in General Business.
    • Poliquin program design certified
    • MECA trainer since 2015

JARED MYERS, Novi Personal trainers

JARED, Assistant Strength Coach

Because he has experienced both inactive and active periods in his life, including track, football, baseball, and boxing, Jared can relate to a wide range of clientele. He can make a workout challenging and fun at the same time, which is helpful for those clients who may approach working with a personal trainer with some apprehension because of weight or other matters. Jared’s goal is to encourage clients toward a healthy lifestyle, beginning from where they are right now.

    • Assistant Strength Coach at MECA
    • Certified Poliquin Level I Personal Trainer
    • Holds a Bachelor of Science in Sports Performance and Fitness Entrepreneurship
    • Kilo ASPD level 1 & Kilo ASPD level 2

READ MORE


LIZ KUMKE

LIZ, Assistant Strength Coach

As one of 12 children in her family, Liz knows all about teamwork and competition. However, it was only after initially pursuing a degree in business that she discovered a passion for fitness and strength training. Athletes, those recovering from an injury, or clients seeking weight loss and better health, all MECA clients receive a personalized training program tailored to fit their unique needs. That personalization is what impressed Liz as an intern, and cinched her decision to pursue a career as a personal trainer.

    • Strength Trainer at MECA
    • Served as a MECA intern
    • Holds a Bachelor of Science in Sports Performance
    • Experienced basketball and volleyball coach
    • CSCS
    • USA weightlifting level 1
    • Kilo APD level 1

READ MORE


ANNA ZITTEL

ANNA, Assistant Strength Coach

Anna is the newest addition to MECA’s growing team. Anna previously ran her own Barbell Club and was a personal trainer before deciding to join the team at MECA. After going through a tough time in her life, Anna found strength and a new passion in weight lifting and physical fitness and it shows in her training. She always brings the energy up in any setting and will always put a smile on your face. She loves getting the most out of her clients and sharing her passion with them. Anna has a tremendous ability to help client’s breakthrough mental and physical barriers, achieving their goals. There’s never a dull moment when you’re working with Anna, she’s your biggest fan and is very excited for your success!

    • Crossfit level 2 Certified
    • Crossfit kids Certified
    • Sports Performance Certified
    • Kilo APD level 1

John Wallace

JOHN, Assistant Strength Coach

The importance of weight training was ingrained early on in John’s high school athletic career. Every coach said he needed to get bigger and stronger to play in college. John took every weight training and conditioning class offered by his high school, including an independent study in Strength and Conditioning. John has since graduated and added 100lbs to his frame. He has obtained his Bachelor’s and Master’s Degree from Central Michigan University. John used his education early on to improve the Central Michigan Men’s Volleyball Program and has worked with many high schools, colleges, and professional athletes since. John has been a strength coach for Central Michigan University, Northwood University, and the Saginaw Spirit Hockey Club. He has also coached high school and AAU Volleyball at high levels. John’s dedication to his client’s success is paramount to his coaching success.

    • Intern and Graduate Assistant for Central Michigan Strength and Conditioning
    • Taught Weight Training and Conditioning for Central Michigan University
    • Assistant Strength Coach for Northwood University
    • Powerlifting Team Coach for Northwood University
    • Head Strength Coach Saginaw Spirit Hockey Club
    • Director of Personal Training for Mountain Town Fitness
    • Holds a Bachelor’s Degree and Master’s Degree from Central Michigan University
    • CSCS*D
    • USAW Level 1

Tyce

TYCE, Assistant Strength Coach

Tyce joins MECA with a diverse resume, after more than ten years in health, fitness, and the sports performance industry. From NFL strength and conditioning to corporate wellness consulting; Tyce’s passion to motivate, encourage, and serve others as they pursue their true potential shows in his approach and energy. He enjoys helping individuals mentally and physically reach new levels of personal growth.

Tyce found MECA through a continual pursuit of improvement, personally and professionally. He sees the process and intentional progression of the weight room to be a great analogy for life. He believes work ethic, discipline, and a growth mindset are key to continual, optimal improvement. As a strength and conditioning coach he has been able to focus his efforts and passion, to better serve others. His personal journey for functional hypertrophy and strength continues to fuel his desire to grow and embrace the process he coaches others through.

He enjoys motivating, challenging, and encouraging others, while best serving them according to their needs & goals.

  • Central Michigan University, Bachelors of Science in Health Fitness & Cardiovascular Rehabilitative Care
  • National Strength & Conditioning CPT
  • Myers Briggs Type Indicator – CPT

Tyce

LONNIE, Assistant Strength Coach

Lonnie was introduced to fitness through sports like most people. Lonnie’s most competitive sports that he grew up participating in was basketball, baseball and track & field. It was through those sports that he learned the value of hard work and having to earn everything that you hoped to achieve. That passion to want to achieve the absolute most out of himself is why he wanted to be a strength & conditioning coach. Lonnie loves helping others work hard and reach their potential to the fullest, while trying to be competitive in their sport. Lonnie draws on his own experience of what it took to become a national level Olympic Weightlifter to aid him in his coaching today. He can empathize with athletes when they are struggling and motivate them to push past their plateaus and achieve the greatness that they are capable of while having fun in the process.

  • Bachelors of Art in Human Development & Family Studies
  • Certified Personal Trainer (American College of Sports Medicine)
  • Preparing for USAW Level 1 and Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialists (CSCS) Certification

Shelly Czarnowczan

SHELLY, Assistant Strength Coach

Shelly started playing hockey at the tender age of just 2 years old. By the time she was 14 she started to weight train with a strength coach for hockey and immediately fell in love. This started her fitness journey and lead her to study Exercise Science and further pursue her newly found passion. She continued to play hockey at the collegiate level for Adrian College and competed in 4 national tournaments finishing with a second and third place title over her time playing there. Since graduating college Shelly both interned and worked at a few notable places but really wanted to further her education and development. She wanted to learn more on how to become a better version of herself in order to help others be the best they can be. Having learned about MECA from a friend that completed an internship at MECA, she knew MECA was the place to help her realize her full potential. Being an athlete has helped her build the character she needs to do what she loves, helping the overall well-being of an athlete/person.


Dominic Patera

DOMINIC, Assistant Strength Coach

At a young age, Dominic tried several sports while growing up and soon became fascinated with becoming more physically fit in order to be better at every sport he was involved in. In high school, his passion for fitness grew after being influenced by his strength and conditioning coach who showed him several different styles of lifting. After seeing the benefits of lifting come to fruition on the mat, Dominic become eager to learn more about lifting and further aid him as an athlete. He continued his athletic and academic career at Adrian College, getting a bachelor’s degree in exercise science and a minor in business administration. Dominic was a 3-time starter and captain on the Adrian College wrestling team. He completed both an internship with the strength coach at Adrian, as well as an internship at MECA. Dominic plans to continue to expand his knowledge in strength training, already having learned more in his short time here at MECA than anywhere else he’s been. Fitness and athletics have shaped who he is today and would love to show others how fitness can improve their entire lifestyle, both physically and mentally!


Rich Jacobs

RICH, Director of Integrative Nutrition

Rich comes to MECA bringing almost 20 years of experience and education in strength and conditioning and nutrition. He is a former NCAA Division 1 strength and conditioning coach where he assisted in 7 NCAA Conference Championships and 1 NCAA National Championship while at Northwestern University, Michigan State University, Xavier University and the University of Florida. He later went back to school to become certified in integrative and functional nutrition.

Taking his knowledge in functional lab work, hormones, gut health, detoxification, sleep and weight loss, his focus is to help optimize both athletes and the general population so they can achieve their goals in lightning speed and be the best in whatever they want their body to accomplish.

  • Functional Diagnostic Nutrition Practitioner
  • Board Certified Integrative and Functional Nutrition Practitioner
  • Kalish Institute for Functional Medicine Certified
  • Institute for Functional Medicine Member
  • Master of Science in Kinesiology
  • Bachelor of Science in Physiology and Psychology

Logan Wheatley

LOGAN, General Manager

Logan joins the MECA team bringing almost 5 years of Olympic weightlifting and Crossfit coaching experience. He also brings just as many years of experience in gym management. After a recent endeavor in a corporate senior living setting, Logan sought out opportunities to get back into a position he was passionate about in the fitness industry, helping others reach their goals. Logan adds to the company’s already stellar culture and reputation with his top-notch customer service and servant leadership. Logan holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, with a focus on Management.


Mike Debat

MIKE, COO

Since MECA started in 2012, the business has done nothing but grow and at an impressive pace. The business eventually grew to a point where it would need an "Operator" and that is where Mike comes in. Mike comes to MECA with 14 years of experience in management with 9 of them being multi-unit management. Mike had previously started as an entry level employee at his former job and climbed the corporate ladder quickly and at a young age. Mike played a lead role in developing processes and procedures for his former company and brings that and many other skills to the MECA team. Mike has a servant’s heart and loves to help both clients and trainers with whatever their needs maybe.