For me, the end of a year is more like a new beginning. That’s certainly how I felt this time last year, as I was leaving behind eight years of full-time desk jobs to give the whole of my attention to my work in the fitness industry. Fit Brit Collective was about to become far more than a platform for occasional blogging; suddenly it was a brand that carried a whole lot of passion, hope and vision. So 12 months on, what exactly have I learned at the helm of Fit Brit Collective?
- London at 5am is otherworldly
The beauty of watching the sunrise, waking with the birds, riding an empty train carriage, bopping to my favourite beats while driving empty roads, and the bliss of that first sip of coffee! Just some of the things I enjoy between those ridiculously early alarms and the first client of the day.
- Once you go stretchy, you’ll never go back
The last time I bought new clothes that weren’t lycra (denim dungaree shorts from Zara, this summer), they were abandoned to the back of my wardrobe within weeks. Stretchy leggings are great for exercise, yes, but also for dog walks, pub lunches and even dressing up with heels (by which I mean wedge trainers).
- The sniff test is totally legitimate
Speaking of stretchy clothes, when you live in leggings and you work out most days, you can guess why my husband calls our washing basket ‘Oscar’ every other day. Cue the return of the sniff test.
- The most demanding boss you’ll ever work for is yourself
Long hours, with no extra recognition. Criticism in rich supply. Tea runs when you’re stressed? Forget it. Working for yourself is no picnic, but it’s a hell of a lot harder to complain about your boss!
- Originality is miles more interesting than imitation
In an industry where there are plenty of personalities, and a busy broadcasting platform called Instagram, it’s easy to add to the noise with yet more half naked mirror selfies and workout videos comprising more butt close-ups than Kim Kardashian’s favourite underwear. Yawn. Body-oggling does not equal genuine connection. I’d much rather inspire one person to try one of my (fully-clothed) workouts than have a million eyes oggling my peach emoticon.
- Don’t trust a man who brings his own boxing gloves to a PT session
… Never again will I be punched in the face while doing my job! That’s a story for another time 😉
- Music will never be just music
That new tune you hear on the radio? Not just a song to sing along to, but the perfect beat for your next spin playlist or for synchronised kettlebell swings.
- Buzzwords rarely outlive a bee’s lifetime
There are so many trends out there, from flash diets to workout concepts to the particular body part most revered on social media, but most of it is nonsense. Healthy lifestyles and sound workouts are grounded in science – and science doesn’t change every four months (which just so happens to be the average lifetime of a bee).
- Sacrifices are unavoidable
When your 9-5 becomes a 5-9, sleep, social life and free time sometimes take the hit. My own training often plays second fiddle to that of my clients. Friends may or may not understand the crazy schedule, but the ones who support you and your visions will be there regardless.
- People make it matter
Your clients become your community; and competitive types better relax the hell out, because you’re going to need other trainers and peers from the fitness industry to keep you sane. Plus they’ll be your greatest teachers along the way. Open your mind, expand your education and put your clients first. Since they’re now also loyal friends, that shouldn’t feel like a chore!
Thank you for being part of the Fit Brit Collective journey! It has been an unforgettable year, and with a new beginning before us, I’m confident 2017 will bring even more endorphins, achievements and connections. First up, new Wimbledon and Raynes Park classes starting week one of January – find out more. The video below is just a little glimpse into the future. Happy Holidays everyone!