About 3 years ago, I was in a job that I didn’t particularly like, carrying more weight than I ever had before, and tackling mental health issues. I was working at a store in Rundle Mall when some fliers were dropped of into the store I was working at by someone who worked for Aleenta BARRE. I’d never heard of Barre before but was interested in group fitness and the concept sounded like fun.
Fast-forward about 6 months and I was a total Barre addict - I was attending 2 regular Barre classes a week (Blend and Yoga Barre being my faves) and an additional Barre F.I.T. class. Not only did I begin to see huge changes in my body strength and energy, but the most remarkable change was that of my mental health. My depression eased, which after battling with it for years I never thought was possible. As a result I started eating better and became interested in learning more about my body, what is good for it and what isn’t. I started educating myself about nutrition and what I should be eating to help me be the best version of myself.
About a year later, I realised that ecouraging others to be active – particularly women – is something I wanted to do. I saw so many girls my age that, like me, struggled with symptoms of depression and anxiety. Also like me, they didn’t realise how important exercise is for your mind – it’s a big piece of the mental wellbeing puzzle. After all, moving is what our bodies are designed to do, so of course it makes us feel good!
Towards the end of 2016, I had finished my Certificate III and IV in Fitness, with the intention of getting into teaching Aerobics or something similar. I didn’t think that I would be qualified enough to teach something like Barre, as I had no ballet experience! When the Barre Instructor Training came up, my mum encouraged me to do it, and although I was excited I was really doubtful of my own ability.
Alicia was so supportive and knowledgeable, and the whole weekend was so much fun. I couldn’t recommend it more! The “exam” was nerve wracking but I ended up with one of the best exam results I have ever received! I was stoked.
A couple of months later, I was hesitant to apply at Aleenta, still having doubt that this was a job I could actually do and if I was the sort of person they had in mind. Again, my mum encouraged me to do it and I’m so glad she did. I now get to work at such as calm environment, and I get to teach a form of exercise that I really believe in, as it is not only good for your body but also good for your mind.
I think we all say this – the clients! It’s so lovely to know that every time you go to work you get to chat to and train such amazing women (and a few men). Getting to know all the other instructors has been great for me too, as before Aleenta I didn’t really have any friends who shared an interest in health and fitness.
Look after yourself and your body. It’s very easy to take on the persona of the health conscious gym junkie (or Barre instructor) and keep pushing yourself through the tiredness of the early mornings and late nights. It’s a learning curve that I think all trainers need to go through but it’s really important to watch your own mental health and give yourself the same amount of care that you give to your clients. You’re no good to anyone if you’re not looking after yourself.
Currently, I’m obsessed with Acai and smoothie bowls – I’m a massive sweet tooth and bowls really satisfy these cravings. As well as being light and cool going into summer. Throwing a bit of LSA and peanut butter in them ensures a little bit of protein after a workout. AND you can literally blend up whatever fruit you like with some nut or coconut mylk. So yum!