This interview is one that’s close to my heart because the relationship with my body, what I eat, how much I weigh and how I work out is one that’s dominated a lot of my life. I have struggled enough with my want to lose weight, want to get fit, how I talk to myself and I’ve come out of it with a much better relationship with myself. So, it’s really important that those who work with people that want to lose weight aren’t just encouraging people to be thin, that they work with the motives behind wanting to change, be healthy and stronger. This is why my chat with Helena was a really interesting conversation.
Tell me a little bit about your Personal Training business, Plantstrong Fitness?
I have been working as a qualified Personal Trainer and running my Business for 2+ years now. A focal point of my business is empowering people to take control of their health and physical fitness. Plantstrong Fitness coaching centres around:
- Emphasising compound movements
- Prioritise exercises that recruit multiple muscle groups for optimal neuromuscular function
- Keeping training simple and fun
- Only include exercises that have been proven to be safe and effective to perform
- Meeting the needs of the client
- Ensuring that my client enjoys performing the exercises that will help them achieve the results they seek
My partner Chris is also a Personal Trainer with a background in Exercise Physiology & Sports Therapy and will we be running Plantstrong Fitness together in the near future. We both personally thrive on a plant-based diet and like to encourage clients to make sure their diet is rich in plant-based wholefoods to support their health. Currently I am offering Online Coaching and Personal Training due to the gyms being closed ( I was based in a gym in Edinburgh). I offer:
- Follow-along workouts on my private @plantstrongfit Instagram – Full Body Strength & Functional Training, Glute Camp, Barre Style, HIIT and Cardio & Core are some examples of the classes I teach. These are taught live and also recorded – monthly subscription
- Weekly or Monthly 1-1 Check In Calls – to keep you accountable to your goals and support
- Virtual PT sessions – 30 minutes or 1 hour arranged at a time which suits you
- Customised Workout Guide tailored to your level of fitness, goals, equipment and other specifications such as how many days per week you want to train
What did you do before you started Personal Training?
I have a background of Scuba Diving and being a Lifeguard so I love being active and also helping people.I did a Law Degree but during university which was when I discovered my passion for health & fitness. My mindset shifted and I wanted to be fit, strong and healthy for life. I also spent some time volunteering in Costa Rica at a Sloth & wildlife Sanctuary which was a fun adventure.
The fitness industry is rife with eating disorders and unhealthy habits. What do you do to try and protect your clients?
There are lots of myths & quick fixes which can be very dangerous out there so it is crucial that people receive proper information which is science-based and empowers them to make healthy lifestyle changes.
I work closely with my clients to find out what their core values are so that they can choose goals which align with those values. An example of a core value could be wanting to improve their fitness so that they can play sports with their children.
During lockdown, I completed a course called EIQ Nutrition which was designed by Emilia Thompson PHD & Emma Storey-Gordon. This course was designed by them to be evidence-based, compassionate approach to nutrition. I loved this course as it included lectures on topics such as Energy Balance, Women’s Health and Plant Based Diets . I am constantly seeking to learn different ways to support my clients.
If a client presents to me with disordered eating or symptoms of an eating disorder, I will refer them to BEAT (www.beateatingdisorders.org.uk) which is an eating disorder charity and or their GP. I understand that anybody of any size or weight can develop an eating disorder at any time and people need to get proper support with this.
I do not give out meal plans to my clients because different people enjoy different types of food. Instead, I focus on educating them on the types of foods which will support their goals and lifestyle & encourage balance without cutting out food groups.
What is the most rewarding thing about doing what you do?
The most rewarding thing is seeing my clients gain confidence in themselves, get stronger and enjoy their own unique journey. To see somebody go from having zero confidence in themselves and their athletic ability to loving exercise, seeing their potential & optimising their lifestyle is amazing.
What advice would you give to people who are thinking of starting their own small business?
I would recommend a business based on your own passions so that you love what you do! Take the time to research and get the necessary qualifications for your business too.
Is there anyone you want to give a shout out to?
I love science-based information so enjoy following:
Emilia Thompson (@emiliathompsonphd) – Instagram
Emma Storey-Gordon (@esgfitness) – Instagram
For plant-based recipes inspiration, lifestyle & information:
Plant Strong Fitness contact details
Get in touch to book your complimentary consultation call by sending an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Private Instagram for workouts @plantstrongfit