Whether it’s fitness events, a workshops or a retreat, stepping out from your regular class routine can have a really positive impact on your fitness and wellbeing.
Chris and I have been running Fit School for four years now in Epping. Before that we were teaching classes and training in and around Essex, London and Surrey.
A good chunk of those years were spent teaching in gyms and health clubs (Chris and I met at Holmes Place on the Strand).
Gyms were our training ground. There was a lot of stuff we didn’t ‘love’ about the gym model (and still don’t) but there were a few things we noticed. We particularly noticed that the people who achieved most with their fitness and health, those who got results, were those who did more than just attend a class – those who trained with you on the gym floor, chatted to you in the changing rooms or asked for some advice got much more out of their gym memberships than the nameless faces trudging away on the cross trainer.
The reason we put on events outside of classes is to:
- Be able to offer you more;
- Be able to get to know more;
- Provide an opportunity for you to get to know us better; and
- Encourage you to really step up your intentions when it comes to looking after ‘you’!
- It’s always worth stating the obvious that you’ll learn/do more in a longer session with a smaller group than you can in a weekly class. Whilst the weekly classes work on a progression basis (we’re always working through programmes of exercises), you can just go that much deeper in a longer workshops or events and you’ll be sure to learn new things and have new experiences.
- You’ll get a freshen up on your current training programme. There’s a very specific time line of fitness progression. You start out with thinking about it, then there’s a trigger which encourages you to dip your toe in. You’ll enjoy the initial results (or drop out at this stage). If you stick with it you might ask more questions and try something new. You’ll get more results which aren’t necessarily physical. And it’s these mental/wellbeing gains which can be a great hook BUT at some point you’ll plateau or wain a little and it’s at this point where you might need a little encouragement in the form of a challenge, a friendly nudge, events or perhaps a fresh take on what you’re doing in the form of a workshop. This is what we hope to provide. Chris and I regularly attend events relevant to either fitness, nutrition, Pilates or just running a small business. It helps to prevent plateau and to come back refreshed. It could be content which we take away or it could be connections and being around like-minded individuals.
- You get the opportunity to ask questions. Perhaps something that’s been bugging you for a while but you felt too silly to ask. In fact if you were to ask in advance, we’d be able to incorporate practical answers to your questions in a workshop. We’re adaptable like that.
- You are making a statement about the importance of taking time out, just for you. Sometimes we shy away from a morning out, a coffee with a good friend or special events because we feel guilty about taking time away from family, home or work but you are absolutely worth spoiling. Do you remember the times you spent playing as a child or just going for a walk ‘because’? If guilt is stopping you from an indulgent few hours for you, stop it now. Do stuff that makes you happy. Do stuff that makes you laugh. And come back to your ‘stuff’ refreshed and renewed. We all know the old saying that you can’t feed your neighbour from an empty cup.
- Fitness events like Race for Life or walks are brilliant ways to nurture your training habit. If you have an event coming up, training becomes more of a necessity, creating training habits for you and for your family who are helping out with childcare etc…
- Fitness events will also give you an opportunity to encourage others in your team, providing you with accountability and also being able to give back. Even the fittest members of your team will need a little support when the going gets tough and don’t underestimate the power of encouraging someone else en route when you are struggling with the pace.
- Which leads me onto the community aspect of what we do. We could have set up a gym, got some average instructors and half decent equipment and started our business in Epping from a back seat position. But we didn’t. We deliberately chose to do it by building our community first because this, for us, is the most credible way of running a fitness community, not just a business. By attending extra classes, events or workshops, you get closer to that community. We all have funny quirks and ways, and in the context of a class you might never get to know that someone who’s a bit quiet and seems awkward – during an event you could discover they are perhaps really funny but shy, or even your new BFF. Some of my favourite days at Fit School are those spent on spa retreats where I get to have lunch, sit by the pool or walk whilst chatting to some of our lovely community. We had belly laughs on our last retreat from one of our newest members.
- You might find there’s been something missing from your training. Chris’ mobility workshops have led to him doing much more one to one mobility work (personal training isn’t all about pumping iron). It’s something professional athletes have a team to work on. Unfortunately it tends to be the thing we skip first.
- Learning new stuff keeps your mind active and young. Part of our vision is to help holistically, which means not just helping muscles, joints and minds but also nervous systems. Learning new skills has a positive effect on your nervous system and also on your brain’s ability to cope with the knocks of life.
- You get to eat cake! Yes on most of our extra days or workshops we get treats like cake and tea, which you’ll know (if you’re a regular) you only get in class if it’s Easter or Christmas!
Our next event is the Happiness Workshop, this coming Sunday (9-12) at Epping Golf Club. It is a fully inclusive event, suitable for everyone! Watch out for our workshops and autumn spa retreat later in the year.