Not in a million years would I have ever considered myself a blogger but here we are! Hello! I thought I’d start this blogging thing off with a bit of background information on me and how I am where I am right now. I’m completely new to this so please bear with me…I’m going to keep it as chatty and light hearted as possible because that’s how I tend to approach most things in my life!
The boring stuff: my name is Hannah, I’m 22 years old and I live in the beautiful countryside of Oxfordshire. The fun stuff: I’m a qualified Gym Instructor, Circuits & Spin Instructor, Manager & soon to be Personal Trainer. I got into fitness – specifically the gym – when I started working at the gym I’m still at today in September 2013. Before this I’d never stepped foot in a gym (besides painful year 10 work experience where you are simply there as an unpaid cleaner – child labour if you ask me). I had however regularly taken part in sport playing netball competitively until the age of 16 and I always loved P.E. at school – I know, I’m one of the few weird girls that actually enjoyed playing hockey on a muddy school field in the pouring rain being screamed at by a butch female teacher with a horrendous hair cut – each to their own I guess.
When I started working in the gym I had hit a bit of ‘lazy’ point in my life in terms of exercise & health and truth be told I didn’t really know what I was doing. But I was motivated to try. Obviously the most important thing for me at the time was getting my job right and doing what I was being paid to do but honestly, all I really wanted to do was spend hours on the gym floor playing around with exercises and seeing what my body could do. Not much has changed because that’s still what I spend most of my time doing in the gym – basically making myself look a bit of a prat experimenting with different moves (some require avoiding eye contact at all costs but that’s a whole different blog post) and just finding what hits those muscles best.
It took me a while to get a real feel for what kind of exercise was my thing and for me, that’s weight training. Strength training makes me feel empowered. I feel strong, confident and sassy and I love that buzz before, during and after a good work out. The first few strength programmes I created for myself lasted about 2 hours each – obviously not always feasible and not always the most effective way to train. You don’t have to spend hours in the gym to get good results, it’s all about finding what works for you and most importantly what you enjoy! What works for you may not even involve the gym and that’s totally fine. Too often we take how fully able we are for granted and one of my main missions working in the fitness industry is to simply get people moving more. It doesn’t have to be anything crazy – I’m not expecting 80 year old Doris to start dead lifting 100KG, but just to MOVE, walk a little bit more, cycle instead of driving, jog with the dog through the park, it doesn’t take much.
I’ve been weight training regularly for about 3 and a half years now and I don’t think I’ll ever look back. My sessions have become much more effective, I’ve learned of and used many different types of training and my exercise bank takes over pretty much my entire brain. I can’t emphasise enough how weight training is so effective for both fat loss and muscle tone. One of my biggest peeves about working in a gym is having new members, particularly females, completely avoid the weights area for fear of ‘getting bulky’ or ‘looking like a man’. I can completely appreciate that the weights section of a gym can be a little daunting at first but especially in my gym the atmosphere is so relaxed and welcoming so I do my absolute best to incorporate weights into all programmes I create for members. If anything, I actually avoid giving people too much cardio work – probably because I’m not the biggest fan of doing cardio myself but again, that’s a separate blog post! It’s the best feeling having someone that had never used weights before and found the whole idea of lifting bits of metal up and down a little scary, turn around and tell me how much they now enjoy it! All I want to achieve from working in the position I’m in is to get people moving and reinforce that strength training is bomb.com and makes you feel sassy AF – even the guys. The guys will deny it but they definitely feel sassy AF lifting weights.
Over the years my passion for lifting and the gym has done nothing but grow, so much so that I started up my fitness Instagram account (hanfit0506) earlier this year – for no reason other than to waffle on about the gym somewhere where people could listen if they wanted to and follow for regular posts, from workouts to food, useless ramblings and just the real life of a girl who loves the gym. I clearly love to ramble so when I was asked to be the Health & Fitness blogger for Pink Lemonade I obviously jumped at the opportunity.
My aim for these posts is to inform where I can, inspire people to find what they love when it comes to fitness and most importantly to empower. I’m a woman that loves to lift other women and if my posts help to lift just one person and make them feel good about themselves then my work here is done! (Just kidding, I’ll be posting every other Wednesday so stay tuned for more hopefully informative, inspiring and empowering blog posts!)