It’s your Thursday bumper C2GO newsletter and I hope it finds you well. This week we have great contributions from Cori, Andrew, and a great follow up by Leah, who is running her fitness business out in Riyadh. Plus, a fab and very inspiring piece from Jo De Rosa, who runs her amazing Yoga retreats. I love to get your comments and feedback, so do please come back to me on Twitter @RachelHolmes or Facebook.com/Choreographytogo
Some great news – I will be speaking at Jenny Burrells new Womens Wellness and Educational event in London on 1/2 March 2014 in London. This will be a groundbreaking event and I am privileged to be taking part. For more info add Jenny on Facebook or join the mailing list http://www.burrelleducation.com/
Would you love to contribute to the newsletter? Have you got an inspiring story that would be of interest to fellow Instructors around the world? Maybe a business or promotional idea or do you run your classes and services in a unique way?
Email me /Tweet /Facebook me with your ideas as I’m looking for new contributors and writers for future newsletters.
Stepping Outside of the Box
Health, Fitness & Beauty Package
I know it’s a huge cliché and one you have heard a million times, but it is something I think about a lot. We do such a great job of delivering fab classes and sessions to an audience who are already into fitness and health. They are members of health clubs, are already there, they are making the change, they have made a commitment and are doing something about it. As are your regulars who come to class. We tend to come into contact with people in our environments who are ready to get going…..That’s all great but there are so many more consumers out there who aren’t quite making it into our classes for a multitude of reasons.
The penny dropped for me a few weeks ago in the hairdressers. Every time I go in, all everyone is talking about is dieting – the pros and cons of this diet, that diet, the 5:2, Clean and Lean and on and on. So, why not bring health and fitness into the hair and beauty world? Have you considered creating or repackaging your services and taking it into salons.
My good friend Marvin Burton was a pioneer of this. He took weekly Biosignature evenings into the salons, giving out his advice and doing weekly fat testing, weigh and measure, and it was extremely successful. With all that in mind I have created a new KSFL Make Over package and the initial demand has been high. I will be going in once a week for a month pre Christmas for a small meeting and talk with each client signing up for my online KSFL, where they can access all of the workouts at home. At the end of the month they get a full hair and beauty make over. I’ll support and monitor them remotely or via a FB group and the salon will be giving them a full image make over. I can’t wait to start as I love the vibe in salons and the whole transformation process. PLUS, I’m excited to be in a cool, high end salon on the run up to Christmas.
Have a think outside your box. Are there other places you could be delivering your services in? If you have created a robust series of online workouts or a workout DVD they can do at home, then why not. You don’t physically have to be teaching a class, just offering information, a tried and tested system and support…….
If it’s becoming a struggle to get people into classes, then we need to get out to where our consumers actually are and tailor our services accordingly. It’s exciting times and this is only the start.
Tweet me your feedback @RachelHolmes
Music – Rachel Holmes Presents Essential House with Pure Energy
I’ve just released my latest collaboration with Pure Energy called Essential House. As an avid deep house fan I have chosen all of my favorite house tracks and it really is a storming mix. Side A is great for conditioning and step and the B side works a treat for HiLO. I hope you enjoy it as I LOVED creating this mix.
You can grab it from Pure Energy here Click here
My Favorite Books and Audios – Gabrielle Bernstien
A while ago a book jumped out at me as I was browsing Amazon. You know that moment when a book cover or some blurb catches your attention and you stop to check it out as you are scrolling through a million books. If you have been following me you will know I love law of attraction and personal growth books and audios and I have to share Gabrielle Bernstein with you. Her book Spirit Junkie was the first book I downloaded and I was hooked .I’ve since downloaded all of her material, follow her on all social media channels and love her messages and philosophies.
Check out her titles Spirit Junkie & Believe in Miracles and her Youtube channel is so inspirational I’m sure you will enjoy using her systems, ideas and strategies in place as I have. Every car journey I have at the moment Gabrielle accompanies me!
Let me know if you follow Gabrielle Tweet me@RachelHolmes
GIVING UP is something that crosses all of our minds at some time. We face a coupe of issues at this time of year –
New clients, generally will wait now until January to get started
Regular clients have diaries that are getting filled for the most social time of the year and money is tight with the imminent expense of Christmas.
Because we do what we do and are reliable, constants in the community, we are the first to put off or side step until the new year. With this in mind we really need to pull something out of the bag that is pertinent to the time of year and relative to our clients needs right now.
4 weeks, inclusive, guaranteed results. Short sharp and to the point. A one off once a tear incentive for the regulars. Convince them to stay and offer them something different.
Make them afraid to miss out. Trust me it will work.
Jayne Nicholls – www.groupxtraining.com
It’s everywhere by Cori Withell
Everywhere I look instructors are looking for the next best thing.
Zumba is dying a death in a lot of areas.
What will be the next big thing?
What if we miss it or jump on it too late?
What if there is no big thing for a while – then what?
You are talented, creative, energetic, enthusiastic, motivated, caring individuals.
Why do you need the ‘next big thing’?
Why can’t you be the next big thing?
You’ve just read that last line and thought, ‘yeah right Cori – dream on’ – go on, admit it, you did!
You know the reason I know you did?
A few years ago you would never have seen me advise for KSFL, write regular articles, set up a support group, believe in myself and not give a monkeys what anyone else says.
Okay, I may not be the next big thing UK wide but I AM the next big thing for me and my clients and that’s what matters to me so I AM THE NEXT BIG THING and YOU CAN BE TOO!
I could say all you need is a little self belief and self confidence, and it’s true, you do but there is a but and it’s a biggy. That little bit of self belief and self confidence can be a nightmare to find. So many of us compare ourselves to everyone around us, measuring ourselves against them and deciding that we are considerably short of the mark. If anyone pays us a compliments we brush it off or find a way to put ourselves down.
So, let’s just say that from today, you are going to be the next big thing!
The next big thing – wow, we need to work on this.
Each and every day you then need to work on that self belief and that self confidence.
So, you could start with accepting compliments as they are offered, you will be amazed at the difference that makes.
Then you could say something positive about yourself each and every day.
Every day you add on something to make you the best version of yourself that you can be – that way you will always be the next best thing 🙂
Health and happiness x
The Freedom of Sobriety
By Jo De Rosa
One year has actually gone very quickly, I can’t believe I am already here! And what stands out for me the most is how much freedom I feel, which is why I titled this post as I did.
When addicted my life was consumed with loathing for myself because I seemed to have no control over doing something over and over again that I didn’t want to do. It was so stupid going around and around in circles, caught up in an everlasting and pointless wheel of destruction. Being in a cage is the exact opposite to what I longed for but back then it was so difficult to imagine how to escape. The door was firmly locked and it seemed there was no way out.
Free from fags
I started my addictive journey back in my teens when I started smoking. I remember clearly throwing up in the gutter in my school uniform and thinking,
“If I keep on smoking my body will get used to it.”
So I wiped the sick from my mouth and lit another cigarette, literally.
I was 14 years old and happily smoked for 10 years before my first attempt at giving up which unfortunately lasted another 10 years! I only got truly free from fags seven years ago.
The next addiction I got myself embroiled in was cocaine. A nasty sneaky substance which put a forceful voice in my head which wouldn’t take no for an answer and had an unreasonable and insatiable hunger. I ran away from it by moving to the other side of the world, but it found me there and the whole ugly cycle re-emerged stronger than ever. It broke my relationships, health and financial security. I returned back to the UK six years later with my tail between my legs, broke, and vowing not to allow that white monster a place back in my life again. A promise that I have kept to this day.
A poison that destroys and ends so many lives
Unfortunately that is not the end to this sorry story. In fact the worst of it is still to come! My alcohol addiction was the most insidious of them all, and one which threatens to ruin so many lives in our country. And my issue with it is our whole societies attitude towards it. Alcohol is a poison that destroys and ends so many lives; there is nothing positive or health giving about it, yet it is so closely woven into how we celebrate our achievements and milestones.
All my friends turning 40 recently meant that I perused many a greeting card shop, and was faced with a barrage of champagne images as if it is something that must be consumed to celebrate correctly. Champagne is a symbol of sophistication and success, but causes sickness and death in reality.
And it is something that we not only use to celebrate with, but commiserate with too. Apparently it helps us to become the life and soul of the party, and also relaxes us after a hard days work. But all it is really doing is filling our bodies and minds with toxins, and ensuring we feel physically wretched and mentally depressed the next day.
But everyone does it, and most people seem to be mostly unsupportive of the few who choose to abstain,
“Don’t be so boring”, “Go on just have one”, “Come on you haven’t got work tomorrow!”
Is it their own inadequacy at not being able to go out and enjoy themselves without it, or is life really that boring without booze?
And I have 365 days and evenings as evidence to support that answer! Food tastes better, I have less weight around my middle-aged midsection, and the insomnia that I thought was inherent in my genetic makeup has vanished. I sleep well, I awake refreshed and ready, I remember every conversation that I have, and I make balanced and rational choices everyday. Gone are the demons, the ‘horrors’, the fears, the insecurities, the self-flagellation, the despair and constant sense of failure.
Are you ready to make the change?
Of course it was scary to make that initial first tentative step. I have been addicted to something my whole adult life, over 25 years! and on some level addiction held a certain comfort in its familiarity. It had become who I was.
So when I made that first step, I fell over a few times, before finally one year ago today, for the very first time not looking back, I kept on moving onwards towards my new sober life. Trying it on for size and realising as the days, weeks and social events passed, that it was not only getting easier but I was enjoying myself! I had my control back, I felt good about myself and finally as the weeks became months I felt proud. Now 365 days later it feels normal to be sober and I wouldn’t have it any other way. I do not miss alcohol, cocaine or cigarettes EVER. I never have an urge to go back to that life of self-induced slavery, when my life now is one of freedom, happiness and clarity.
So my work is to show you how to take that step. There are certain tools that have helped me tremendously which I wish to share with others who are keen to be free also. This blog that you are reading will become the introduction to the new book I am writing, and the manual that forms the structure of my ‘Yoga for Addictions’ five-day retreat program will become the subsequent chapters.
You see something shifted when I had my last drink and made the decision to be kind to myself. It was about a week into sobriety that I fully grasped the fact that this was the first time I’d been sober in my whole adult life. It was a pivotal moment and one I want to share with others who would like the clarity, prosperity, health and happiness that is part of my everyday existence now.
If I can do it, why not you too?
I am living the life of my dreams, realising my full potential, and have steps you can take to lead you to that place too. If I can help just one person out of their addiction I will have achieved so much!
Copyright: Jo De Rosa 2013
Behind the Veil
Firstly I have to say I really appreciate all of the feedback I received from last week’s article, and I’m pleased to know that the fitness world in Riyadh is interesting to other trainers. I’m also very pleased to have made a new contact here with another trainer living in Riyadh…. What a small world after all!
Last week I explained the ins and outs of women’s fitness in Saudi Arabia (or lack of, should I say), and a question I’m regularly asked is, “But what are the PEOPLE actually like?”
The majority of people in Saudi fall into one of three categories: Poor, Wealthy, or Super Wealthy. As I explained in last week’s article, women’s fitness centres in Riyadh are currently seen as a ‘luxury’ and memberships are priced accordingly, resulting in zero accessibility to women who aren’t from wealthy families, and for me it was horrifying to discover that men’s gym memberships are a fraction of the price that women pay. But lets not get started on that……
With this situation in mind, members of the women’s fitness clubs are typically from wealthy families, or women with a strong work ethic who have strived to carve a strong career for themselves (also not an easy task in Saudi, and girls I applaud you!). I won’t beat about the bush here and can openly tell you that the majority of my time in Riyadh has been spent in the company of royalty, and that a large portion of my clients here have been from the royal family. I should point out at this stage that the Al Saud royal family currently has around 15,000 members, and as a working expat, it’s fairly ‘normal’ to know a Princess or 2, (Oh Toto, I don’t think we’re in Kansas anymore….).
So now you’re wondering what it’s like to train a Princess – Right?
I’d imagine that to picture a stereotypical Arab Princess, dressed head to toe in black with only her eyes on display, would give you a certain impression? Be honest if you’d relate it to the scene in the ‘Sex And The City’ movie when ladies in Abu Dhabi remove their abayas to reveal glamorous, designer fashion.
I’m sorry to disappoint you, but they are just like you and me. Do you workout in leggings with a hole in the crotch, a stain on your t-shirt, odd socks and no make up? So do they. Do you sweat buckets, curse at yourself when you’re being a wimp, and occasionally wear your workout vest back to front or inside out? They do too!
So yes, these ladies are very lucky to have been born into a privileged lifestyle, but at the end of the day they are just ‘normal’ girls like the rest of us. Whatever normal is….
As I mentioned last week, my first job in Riyadh was in a ladies Spa, and quite the eye opener! I’ve always been a believer that a student is only as good as the teacher, which I quickly changed my mind on when I started work here. Imagine going to a new aerobics or dance class for the first time. You might feel a little uncoordinated if it’s not your normal style, or it’s new choreography. Now imagine going to the same class when you’ve never been to a disco or had a little dance to pop music when nobody’s looking. Imagine that at school you didn’t learn about rhythm and body movements, or any co-ordination skills. NOW, imagine teaching movement to somebody who doesn’t understand how their own body works….. Gee whizz it was a challenge! I didn’t imagine I’d ever have to explain in such detail to adults the importance of everybody travelling in the same direction, the different between left and right, why you need to bend your knees when you jump, and why music has beats. BUT it has definitely made me a better instructor, with a much stronger ability of breaking down and explaining movement (and maybe with a few premature grey hairs).
There are the lucky few who were schooled overseas and, therefore, experienced sports, dance and exercise at school, or maybe some were allowed to take private dance lessons in their homes after school. But as I previously explained, sports in girls schools is not part of the curriculum here due to cultural beliefs, and many women are starting to learn how to use their bodies when they are entering their 30’s, 40’s or 50’s. The thing I find most distressing is that ladies who aren’t coming from such privileged backgrounds don’t get the chance to experience this, and their health and quality of life cannot be improved, as gym memberships are completely unaffordable.
Current fitness centres for ladies in Riyadh are mainly owned by Princesses and other well established families, with a large number of foreign trainers and other staff being flown in to Saudi to manage and run the facilities, but things are starting to change. A small number of ladies of Arab origin have become interested enough in fitness to become trained as instructors themselves, and although many gyms are reluctant to employ them, there ARE now Arab trainers working here in Riyadh (GIRL POWER)!
My biggest wish for fitness in Saudi, probably along with a majority of it’s female residents, is that women’s health and well being will one day become as accessible as it is to men, with affordable, government – run fitness centres, a wider focus on nutrition, and a broader knowledge of HOW to make healthy lifestyle changes (preferably something that is not a quick fix diet pill with a Kardashian on the box).
So for now, here’s hoping…..
Tweet me: @Leah_MissFit
Until It’s Time To Settle Care Home Fees
By Andrew Crawford
Hopefully we will all grow to be Old Crinkley Croonies one day and stay in our own homes instead of going into corrective prison…..oops…I meant care.
This weekend I join my good buddies I have known and loved for over 25 years Dean Hodgkin, Roy Gayle and David Hoy into the ‘fifties club’…….Lord Have Mercy……Somebody ‘Stop The Clock’……..if only eh…??!!!
The thing is……….none of them look a day over 35 plus VAT………!!
You wanna know their secrets??? I bet you do….ha ha ha
Mine is nivea (previously baby lotion…the pink plastic bottle)
The strange thing is………I still feel 27 – 35….(..now stop it…I can see some of you now saying…”..You naughty chap..”.).
Well, what happened this week?
Last Saturday as I was tucking into my full English greasy delicious breakfast in Nottingham, I happened to lift one of the daily papers. The headline read:
“..Councils Spy On Parents Who Sign Over House To Children..”
Now…..I didn’t choke on my bacon until I read the details inside the front page.
(Note: I am going to repeat here exactly what it said…libel don’t you know………so that there is no ambiguity)
Laws That Give Councils Power To Claw Back The Cash
“…..If a Council unearths evidence that a property has been deliberately shielded from a care home means test, it can call on considerable legal firepower…..”
“..FIRST…if it happened within 6 months of asking the council for funding, it can rely on the …….
Health and Social Services and Social Security Adjudications Act 1983
“………in this case the council can recover any sums it has to pay towards the resident’s care costs from the person who the home was transferred to….”
“…….If they find the property transfer took place more than six months before asking for care, a separate piece of law called….
The Assessment Resources Regulations
“……….allows the council to refuse to fund the resident in the care home – often sparking a legal challenge…….”
“……….Or officials may decide to pay on the resident’s behalf and treat it as a debt to be repaid later………..”
“….In such a case a local authority can ultimately use the…
Insolvency Act 1986
“…to get the money. In this case a court may then order an earlier transfer of a home into trust to be set aside, or order the deeds to be returned to parents from children……….”
So Andrew……..What does this ALL mean?
What has this got to do with Accountancy & Tax? Do we care?
The point is………I care….!!
Those who own properties………..Listen up
Those youngsters who are going to buy properties….Listen up
Those who have children living with you………Listen up
You must make sure they are protected properly. Making a Will is not enough.
When you are undertaking Inheritance Tax planning and transfer assets to your children or assets have been transferred to you be absolutely clear and confident in what you are doing.
Councils now employ ‘Avoidance Inspectors’ to probe a family’s financial affairs if they suspect you are deliberately trying to shelter yourr home from council care calculation.
This is known as ‘deliberate deprivation’ and the inspectors have legal powers to go after suspects.
You can see that this is too close for comfort. Either you are Tax Planning or Deliberately shielding your assets from the council.
Thousands of people are forced to sell their homes to pay for care.
If you have assets of more than £14,250 you are at risk from the threat of Care Fees. If you fell ill and couldn’t work or live independently you could be expected to pay as much as £1,000 per week for your care.
What are Exempt Benefits?
Business assets. .
Pension/death in service benefits.
Who are Exempt Beneficiaries?
Passing Exempt Benefits to Exempt Beneficiaries means that if on death these assets are not spent then they could be liable to inheritance tax and long term care costs which could take the assets down to the last £14,250.
If you are interested in protecting your assets I have decided to host a 2 – 3 hour short seminar, to small intimate groups say 8-10, something I have entitled…
“……How you can protect both your Personal and Business Assets tax effectively for future generations……….”
I am talking about Asset protection wills which can protect assets passing from one generation to another for up to 125 years from:
Future marriage and subsequent divorce.
Long term care costs
If you or someone you know would like to know how to avoid any of the above problems I need to guage your interest, so please leave your details here……
In the same paper on the same page:
“…………Journalists can break law…………”Do you care?
Prince George was recently baptised. George was baptised using water from the River Jordan. Do you care?
If you cared, you will send bottles of veuve to help me celebrate this weekend.….
All those attending a Halloween shin dig,….Enjoy and Take Care.
Protect your assets now.. Remember………….I care.
Andrew ‘60’s Babe’ Crawford
Wishing you all a fantastic Thursday
Love Always Rachel xx