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  • Instructor Newsletter 5 January 2012

    Happy New Year to everyone!

    I hope you had a great break and now getting back into the swing of things! This newsletter is action packed with new articles and inspirations designed to re motivate you back into the swing of things. I am so, so very exited to be back on the road this weekend with my latest tour and it will be fab to catch up with everyone and present all of my latest material.

    3 Fitness Marketing Resolutions – Gung Ho Guidelines by Rachel.

    Fitness, Health, Diet and Wellness is so IN right now. Don’t undersell your knowledge and expertise and get out there and start marketing you and your brand into the wider community.

    What are YOU going to do differently this year. Here’s my gung ho guidelines in a nutshell. You my of read these all before BUT are you doing it YET?

    1. A weekly newsletter – sign up to MailChimp move all your email contacts over using an excel spreadsheet and create a newsletter. It doesn’t have to be long or a lot of work. Create a weekly connection with your class members.

    2.Set up a FaceBook Page for your business and fill it with pictures and videos and articles. Facebook is changing again to the new timeline and it will be harder to promote your business here, so start work on a page today.

    3.Public Speaking – Reach out and network with as many local networking groups as you can. Google all of them in your area and go along. You will be able to barter printing, web designers, graphic designers, cookery schools, local entrepreneurs and business owners. Rehearse what you will say when you introduce yourself to people or stand up in the group.

    4. Create a class handout – Don’t forget to copy your online newsletter and give it out in class to people who don’t use email that much. Customers love a hand out and very rarely get anything like that these days. As it gets bigger offer local businesses space to advertise and charge them for it, this could become a whole income stream in itself.

    5 Top Twitter Tips by Rachel

    Twitter IS the way forward for ALL Fitpros – Yes I know many of your class members aren’t on Twitter, but Twitter is the fastest way for you to find out what’s going on in the Fitness World, Business World, Get your message out………, in fact all worlds!

    It’s the social media grapevine and it is THE best way for you to network with business owners, potential partners, sponsors and collaborators.

    I am a former newshound who devoured every paper and magazine on a daily basis BUT now follow all the daily papers and my favourite magazines, writers and journalists on Twitter and get the news in 140 characters throughout the day. Perfect and best of all Free and it’s all as it happens in real time.

    1.Open a Twitter account using your name or business name. I’m @RachelHolmes as that’s what people will search for when looking for me rather than Choreographytogo.

    2.Tweet fitness, fatloss and exercise information regularly.

    3.Tweet offers and promotes selectively. You are trying to build relationships and help people get to know you rather than just selling your services all day every day.

    4.Tweet GOOD info pertinent to your target market.

    5. Follow local businesses, local celebs, local media, Local radio and TV journalists, and build up your contacts and followers. This may take a while but chip away as often as you can.
    You Tube Gems by Rachel Holmes

    Have you got a YOUTUBE Channel? No then get one up and running asap. The more Youtube videos you put up the quicker you will get to the top of google and help more traffic to your website and potential customers to find you.

    1. Call your channel your name or business name whichever you want to promote. I am Rachel Holmes TV.

    2. Film regular VLOGs – You could be talking about Fitness Tips, Diet information, Doing Cookery, Shopping for Fat Loss foods in Morrisons, Going for a walk whilst talking … anything pertinent to your target market.

    3. Film 10 minute workouts and promote them in your newsletters.

    4. Film clips of your classes.

    5.Film testimonials of your class members and clients.

    The trick with all social media is consistency and to keep updating your channels keeping your content fresh and exciting.

    January Jump Start – Rachel Holmes Kick Start Fat Loss for Fitpros KSFL 2012

    You may remember several years ago I did the first online fat loss course aimed at Fitpros, wanting to drop Body Fat with a nutritional plan that doesn’t leave you energy less to teach classes. I filmed special workouts for the plan and we all get involved and went for it.

    It was a massive success and now I am re launching and revamping the whole process. Once you have taken part you can then take the concept and use it on your own clients and class members as a live group or as an online passive income package. But you have to do it with me first!

    I’ll take you through the workouts and the food so you know exactly how to run it

    It’s 14 days with 14 x 10 minute High Intensity Workout Plus a 14 Day Fatloss Plan.

    The support group, information, workout access and my tutoring will all be held on a private Facebook group with the video links posted every day.

    To join January Jumpstart – Kick Start Fat Loss watch your inbox, Facebook and Twitter as I will be posting the information later today you have 4 days to prep, get your shopping and mindset focused and we kick off on Monday 9th January.

    If you really want to get organised for the 14 days it will make it easier if you have a slow cooker to prep your meals, and for workouts dumbbells, a stability balls and a skipping rope. If you haven’t these I will give alternatives. You will be able to do the workouts at home, in the gym or incorporate them into class.

    The Freestyle Flag

    I am aiming to film more and more downloads every week now to help inspire you and keep flying the freestyle flag with as many choreography and class ideas that I can think of. I hope this inspires you to become even more creative and inventive in your own classes so we can keep flying the Freestyle Flag and keep freestyle growing and evolving.

    Here’s what I have been working on so far……

    Free Choreography Quick Fix Choreography Clips

    I am doing a Quick Fix Choreography Clip every week and here are what I have filmed so far; please do comment on the page and let me know what you think.

    Quick Fix Choreography 3 Step

    Quick Fix Choreography 2 Hi Impact

    Quick Fix Choreography 1 HiLo

    New Downloads

    My Favourite Tough Girl Leg Exercise Click here to view

    My favourite Tough Abs and Core Exercises Click here to view

    Active Seniors 20 Click here to view

    Functional Conditioning TBC Matrix Click here to view

    Fast and Furious Hi Impact Click here to view

    Rocking Intermediate Step Click here to view

    The best way to view all of the new videos is by using a FireFox browser. If you download FireFox it’s free you will be able to view the videos in the best quality.

    Pure Energy Teams Up with Rachel Holmes in an Exciting Partnership

    Today marks a very exciting day as I will be teaming up with the one and only Pure Energy Music.

    I am super proud to announce this exciting partnership between myself and Pure Energy – I will be working closely with PE to help provide you with the best music for your classes.

    I originally started working with Pure Energy back in the early 90?s and released the very first UK Choreography VHS and music package (Yes VHS!) that went on to be a huge best seller, my subsequent select music releases also sold in their thousands and I presented at ground breaking PE events and conventions.

    As the industry has evolved I am back collaborating on innovative and exciting new projects that we will be revealing over the coming months.

    Pure Energy and its parent company Music Factory have a long standing reputation for providing top quality mixes by experienced music producers. As well as their regular releases, Pure Energy also produce the music for many high profile products such as Ministry of Sound’s ‘Pump It Up’ DVDs.

    Like you, I have tried all of the current music providers and now have gone back to the original and best music provider in Europe. If you used to get your music from PE and moved away for what ever reason, now is the time to take a fresh look at PE.

    Make sure you check out the amazing Pure Energy Digital website where you are able to download music in minutes, the tracklistings are awesome, and the website is quick and simple to use!

    My current favourite releases are:

    Funky House Workout Click here

    Get on the Dance Floor Click here

    Soul and Motown Party Click here

    Stay tuned for updates and news hot of the press via Twitter @Thepureenergy Facebook and YouTube

    Plus as a special offer to my Choreographytogo Members and customers, Pure Energy are offering you £5 off any of their products! If you’re downloading, then enter the code Holmes12 at the checkout, or if you’re buying CDs, call their sales team on 01709 710022 and quote that code. Don’t forget you don’t have to be a subscribing member to buy Pure Energy music now, you just need to have a valid PPL Licence!


    Jayne Nicholls

    Hello and a very Happy New Year. 2012 promises some massive changes in the way that our industry will run compared with the previous decade of pre choreographed dominance in both club and instructor trends. This could end this year! Zumba has already offered the option of pre or self choreographed content, with massive success, but my question today is will the instructor take back ownership of their own class content this year? Fitness is currently big business in the UK, I doubt you meet anyone who does not currently exercise or who does not aspire to do some exercise ‘in the near future.’ This puts you into a hugely favourable position as you are the key to offering everyone around you a fitness programme that suits both their physical and psychological needs.

    The only thing that holds instructors back in 2012 is their inability to think laterally and facilitate the needs of people right here and right now, which is a ‘mindful’ approach to dealing with clients. Of course you cannot teach licensed programmes legitimately in small venues, community venues or in peoples homes unless you are a licence holder, however you can do all of these things if you are a creator of your own content which is specific to client needs and their situations.
    Outside of the club chains, people have a massive range of needs and desires that the clever Fitness Professional will capitalise on this year. If you look at your insurance policy, you should be covered to teach ‘what you know’ to large o small groups of people. The other major factor in 2012 is that there is no limit to what we can and should know in the area of fitness.
    Things are changing around us with speed, therefor if you stay the same you may get left behind. Rachel and I have made a pact to do at least 1 new thing a week, this is in both work and play. It takes a lot more effort but is hugely worth while.

    Transferring a Sole Trader Business into a Limited Company

    By Andrew Crawford

    Today I want to briefly touch on why I think it is best to consider transferring your Sole Trader business into a Limited company somewhere down the line.

    There are some great Fitness Industry Mentors at present, helping develop future Fitness Entrepreneurs. People like our own Rachel Holmes, Dax Moy, Steve Jack, Paul Mort and Jon Le Tocq to name a few…

    This has invariably led to many instances where I have seen people transferring their businesses from Sole Trader to Limited company. One day they are self employed, the next…a Director of their own limited company.

    There is nothing wrong with this but there is a better way.

    Instead of transferring the business….SELL the business to the limited company. This will involve the selling of shares which means…Capital Gains Tax.

    OK, Andrew, so how do we avoid this awesome tax?

    I’m glad you asked…let’s look at it…

    The solution is to issue shares in the new company in consideration for the asset of the business bought.

    What happens to the Capital Gain in this instance? It effectively is deferred until you SELL the shares. By that time, you would have qualified for Entrepreneur’s relief, which I will not discuss in this report but think of the relief in terms of millions. ..10 million to be exact.!!

    Again, there are conditions. You must meet these 3:

    1. The whole of the assets must be transferred to the new company

    2. The business must be transferred as a going concern

    3. The business must be transferred wholly or partly in exchange for shares issued by the company to the person(s) transferring the business

    Because you are transferring the business effectively to yourself, the Inland Revenue doesn’t like it. They call this connected personst me and you know that the business and you are separate legal entities.

    What they will want to do is, impose a market value on all trading stock which is transferred which means you will be taxable on the full selling price of the trading stock before you have even sold it.

    What can you do to avoid this?

    You can make a claim (election) to transfer the stock at the higher of original amount paid by the company. Again, notice that this must be claimed, they will not tell you this!

    Extracting Profit from the Company

    Apart from a salary and paying a tax efficient dividend from the company, here are some ways you can extract profit from it;

    Make a loan to the company and charge a significant rate of interest

    You can even take a cheap/interest free loan from the company

    Use company assets instead of buying them yourself

    Use company assets instead of buying them yourself

    Letting the company provide you with free accommodation

    Receiving child care vouchers from your company

    Getting your medical cover paid by the company

    Making other members of your family shareholders, so they will receive income from dividends paid by the company

    Selling personal assets to the company

    Charging the company a licence fee for using one of your ideas

    Now, I’m not saying that the above list is exhaustive but this gives you an idea as to what you can do with it.

    The above does not apply to sole traders or partnerships because they can do whatever they like regarding the extraction of profits.

    Visit our website at: for more FREE resources and articles.

    ‘Liker page at:

    Andrew Crawford can be contacted on twitter @tax4fitness or

    NO, it is not Calories in vs Calories out, its about HORMONES by Sally Ghafoor
    Not all calories are equal…. To say they are would mean you are saying that carbohydrate, fat and protein calories are equal in terms of their effect on body weight. The body processes each of these in a distinct way and the difference provokes difference responses for fatloss or weight gain.
    Gasp I can here you…. 500 calories is 500 calories right??? WRONG
    Let’s look at 2 different foods…. I am going to pick my favourites….
    500 calories of lindt chocolates vs 500 calories of Broccoli (or trees as my kids call them)
    So the 500 calories of chocolate will have the same effect on the body as the 500 calories as broccoli as you think all calories are equal? 500 calories has gone into the body so what now.
    Well last week I spoke about insulin and its effect on weight in the body, so when I am stuffing my 500 calories of chocolate what is that hormone insulin doing, its spiking, big fat insulin spikes are occurring in my body, causing my body to store fat, let’s look at the mechanics… after a high carb meal the glucose within your body will rise rapidly, the pancreas releases the insulin to remove the excess insulin, the body can only store a limited amount of glycogen the rest is stored as fat…… so my 500 calories of chocolate has spiked my insulin and been stored as fat….. my 500 calories of broccoli however does not spike insulin in the same way so I will not be storing that as fat….., also take five minutes to revisit my article on how fat does not make you fat, certain fats produce testosterone, lower your fats you lower your testosterone, lower your fatburning ability.
    So no not all calories are equal, hormones play an immense part in fatloss and weight gain, its about what you eat and the hormonal response created that is the key, I have very quickly touched on Insulin, there are many more, testosterone, estradiol, cortisol, adrenalin to name a few, these are anabolic and catabolic hormones, Together, both the anabolism and catabolism processes in your body are known as metabolism.
    So can you see now how not all calories are equal, it’s the response they cause within the body from certain hormones, so instead of calorie counting why not look at the content of your calories.
    1. Not all calories are equal, it’s the hormonal response to what you eat
    2. Hormones play a massive part in weightloss/gain
    3. Fats do not make you fat
    4. Certain fats produce testosterone, a hormone in the body which is essential to your fatloss
    5. Cortisol (stress hormone) will inhibit your fatloss, if your carrying excess fat around your middle, look at reducing your cortisol (stress levels) doing aerobic exercise to try and decrease your stomach fat will not work, this will only raise your cortisol levels so you may be in your fatburning zone but you certainly won’t be shifting that fat around your tum!
    I could go on, but I am trying to simplify the complicated world of hormones without going into complicated details, want to know more or have questions get in touch or on facebook : Sally Ghafoor or follow me on twitter @sallyghafoor.
    Happy new year to you all x

    Why Small Group Training is the Future of Fitness for 2012 and Beyond! By Katie Bulmer-Cooke

    Hey C2Go’ers,

    I hope you all had a lovely Christmas, and that Santa was good to you!

    In this article I wanted to share with you why I KNOW small group training WILL be the future of our fabulous industry in 2012 and beyond.

    As many of you will know in 2011 I created The Little Black Dress Club™, a SGT concept for really busy women that produces insane results! I am extremely proud of this product, not only because the brand has grown immensely in 2011 but also because of the way it has changed so many women’s lives up and down the country, as we are now in 13 cities across the UK!

    So what are the secrets to its success, and why is SGT so successful?

    · It has all the benefits of a personal trainer; a comprehensive nutrition system that is easy to follow with resources such as shopping lists, meal plans, recipes and cook books and it has structured workouts that progress in intensity over 6 weeks.

    · It gets the same great results as working with a trainer 1:1, and delivers every time.

    · It has accountability in abundance; not only are clients accountable to their trainer, they are also accountable to their follow members of the group.

    · They all go on the journey together and the support is huge.

    · It has all of the banter and fun of a class, but with tons more individual attention.

    · It bridges the gap between boot camps and 1:1, both in terms of experience and cost.

    I could go on, but hopefully the short list above illustrates how powerful it can be!

    Many fitness trends will come and go, but when something can produce replicable results every time then it’s gonna be here to stay.

    If you are looking to revamp your fitness business in 2012, help 100’s of people reclaim their health, and their body then you need to jump on this.

    I’m going to be sharing my secrets to success in the SGT field and giving you the steps you need to set up your own SGT in a webinar on Tuesday 24th January at 9.30pm.

    If you would like a space, you can register using this link…

    IYou Hear It All the Time!

    Here we are the start of a new year, 2012…things will be different this year right? Changes will be made, life will be better, you’ll be less stressed, and you’ll change the things that make you unhappy?

    Or maybe not!

    When you log onto Facebook at the moment you see so many inspiring goals, so many promises of change, so much positive energy. But the sad thing is, as we all know, so often such changes never take place, or if they do its only momentarily.

    The same can be true for us fitness professionals too. We continue to teach classes that zap our energy, we keep our fantastic ideas as ideas and never action them, we stay stuck in a rut, because its often easier than going against the grain, feeling a little uncomfortable and making a change.

    I’m not normally one for resolutions but this year I’ve made one big one, and I would love it if you would join me in it as I think it is one that can help us all in many situations…

    ‘In 2012 I will only do the things that make me happy’

    And we can use this with our clients too, in supporting them on their journey towards their goals, whatever they may be. Just tweak it a little…

    ‘In 2012 I will only do the things that take me closer to my goal…if it makes me feel in any way negative it’s gotta go’

    I know we hear it all the time but seriously, opportunities are out there for the taking, you can achieve whatever you set your mind to, especially when you are in a happy place.

    So here’s to a super successful 2012 for all my fitness friends and choreography to go readers…let’s make the changes!

    Katie xx


    Are you feeling overwhelmed? Cori Withell

    Christmas and New Year over and now the big fitness onslaught begins but how are YOU feeling?

    Are the pressures you are feeling ones that YOU are creating? Are they external pressures? Are they perceived pressures that only ever exist in your mind?

    As fitpros we put ourselves under immense pressure to be the best, to be inspirational, motivational, enthusiastic, happy, always smiling, energised.

    So what happens when we don’t feel like that?

    We are not robots, or machines. We are human beings that have feelings and things going on in our lives like everyone else. I actually think the pressure we put on ourselves is far more than anyone else ever does.

    We put such high expectations on ourselves without ever stopping to consider the impact this continual stress has on our lives and most importantly our health.

    Remember to take time out for you every single day, how many of us repeatedly tell our clients to relax, have ‘me’ time etc but hardly any of us seem to follow our own advice. Other things always seem to take over. There is always admin to do, routines to create, music to learn, articles to write, social media updates to do, the list goes on and on!


    There is only one of you and sooner or later your body tell you to stop and then you will be given no choice. So why not take the decision today to just give yourself a break every now and then. Your body will thank you for it, you will be more productive, have more energy, you will get back to enjoy what you are doing and your clients will thank you for it.

    What we do every single day is amazing. We give people the opportunity to change their lives – that has to be one of the best jobs in the world. Just remember you are one of those people and look after yourself as well as you look after your clients.

    Follow me on Facebook and Twitter

    *Tips for after the Baby Show (Part 3) by Claire Mockridge

    Happy New Year everyone,

    I hope you’re having a great start to 2012 and raring to go with your classes. My postnatal classes are full with waiting list at the moment, and my pregnancy classes aren’t far behind, so if you’re concerned that you won’t ever fill your pre and postnatal classes, I’m here to tell you, you will, you just need a little help from an Expert like me to get you to run your classes more like a business, ok?

    Working with pregnant and postnatal women isn’t easy, but, get the basics right from the word go, and you’re on to a winner, and the opportunity of working with a very rewarding population.

    Now down to today’s article. This is the final in a series of 3 articles about Exhibiting at a Baby Show. If you missed the first two articles, Part 1 covered “What to do to prepare for a Baby Show”, Part 2 listed “What to do on the day of the Baby Show”, and Part 3 talks about “What to do after the Baby Show”.

    Toddler and Baby Shows, Baby Fayres and Bump to Five Shows are popping up all over the country, in the smallest of villages, simply because they’re targeting a niche market. Nowadays, there are lots and lots of activities not just for babies, but for new mums, and also mums-to-be to partake in. By marketing your pre/postnatal services at a Baby Show, your target market is right there in front of you. It’s an opportunity you can’t miss, really.

    Hopefully, since my last article, you’ve done your research into the cost of exhibiting at a Baby Show. No doubt, if you’ve found a large event near to you, you’re concerned that you won’t make enough money on the day to re-coup the cost of the stall. Don’t let it worry you. It’s actually the “after-sales” service that you want to concentrate on, particularly if you don’t have any physical products to sell on the day.

    Are you ready for my top tips on what to do after the Baby Show? Well, here goes:

    -Ok, so you’ve chatted to lots of bumps and new mums about your classes, and have collected a load of email addresses from them for your Prize Draw. The first thing you need to do is select the winner of your Prize Draw and email them.

    -Build some hype on Social Media here with: “Drum roll please…..tomorrow I’ll be selecting the lucky winner of my Prize Draw! Good luck everyone to everyone who entered and thanks so much for a fab day!” etc. Then, the next day reveal the winner and contact them.

    -Ok, so what do you do with all of the other email addresses? Well, you need to firstly send them all an email (I separate these into pre and postnatal lists, by the way), saying it was nice to meet them at the Baby Show etc. If you ran a special offer on the day of the Show, you could mention that the discount will still stand, especially for them, for just 7 days. In a few days time, schedule another email reminding them of the deadline, and state that you’re adding their name to your weekly Newsletter which is jam-packed full of hints and tips for exercising. And, if you don’t have a weekly Newsletter – shame on you! You need to continually market your services to these women so you don’t drop off their radar. And remember, by doing this, you will recoup the cost of your stall at the Baby Show.

    -I’m just going to back-track a bit here and make a point about Prizes for the Show, in case you’re struggling for ideas on what to give away. Personally, I’d suggest that you don’t DISCOUNT the cost of your classes on the day. This devalues your service, instantly. Offer clients something for FREE, that doesn’t cost you much to produce eg a Worksheet covering 5 essential Pilates exercises for postnatal women etc as a Prize. You know that I have 2 DVDs: one is a Pregnancy Fitness DVD, and the other is a Postnatal Fitness DVD. Do I want to give one of these away as a Prize on the day? No – they cost me money to produce! I want people to buy them from me on the day, but to entice them into doing so, I offer them a discount if they do buy one from me on the day, and when I email them afterwards, I put a hold on the price of the DVDs for 7 days. I hope that makes sense.

    -Ok, now remember that Show Guide/Booklet I asked you to collect at the Baby Show in last week’s article? You’ll find a whole host of bump and baby-related businesses in there. Select a few that you think would be good to do business with, and get your networking skills in action. Think about your client group feeding into theirs, and vice versa. Sell your classes and your client base to them eg I have 500 postnatal clients on my database with babies between 6-9 months etc. Tell them you have a Newsletter and you’d like to feature them in your Newsletter. Ask them to write you a 250-word article about their services/special offers/news and events they have coming up, and make sure they return the favour by advertising yours.

    And there you have it! My top tips for selling after a Baby Show.

    If you’d like to know what sort of data I collect from pregnant and postnatal women at the Baby Shows I exhibit at (hint: it’s not just their email address!), head over to my private Facebook Group here and join in the discussions with other FitPros interested in qualifying to teach pre/postnatal clients:!/groups/clairemockridge/

    Kind regards

    Claire Mockridge

    Ante/Postnatal Fitness Expert



    PS If you’re stuck for interesting articles for your pre/postnatal Newsletter, check out my Blog:

    Fitpro’s – Make 2012 YOUR year and go for it! By Alice Ramcharran

    Well 2012 – who can believe it – the start of another year, this year is going to be the year, the setting of MORE new years resolutions! And then not sticking to them! Yep, even as Fit Pro’s I think most of us can honestly say that we are guilty of making resolutions and then not sticking to them. If you do stick to your resolutions then please let me know the secret, as I’ve found year on year that I set them and then a couple of weeks down the line they are gone out of the window. Which is why last year and this year, I shall be setting myself goals and writing my to do lists instead! When I look back over 2011 it was actually THE best year I have ever had in the Fitness Industry – even though it didn’t feel like it at the time I got LOTS achieved and my business has gone from strength to strength over the past 12 years – and I’m determined to make this year an even better year, and urge you to do the same.

    Whether you are full time self employed, or part time, or have a full time job and want to quit to run your own business, my advice is to get those plans and goals in place and just GO FOR IT!

    Back in October 2008 I was in the same position – full time job managing a gym, which I LOVED but I’d been there far too long, it wasn’t challenging – just comfortable and well paid, but something was just missing. I’d been thinking about leaving for about 18 months, but kept putting off and worrying about what might be, until I got to the point that I was so busy that something had to give (I’d been busy setting up my own classes outside of work, and they had taken off like I never imagined!) and my employers were nice and kept me on part time just 10 hours per week. By April, I had become so busy that I was struggling to fit these 10 hours in, and so I gave 3 months notice and left in July 2009, and seriously haven’t looked back since! My only regret? That I didn’t do it sooner!

    I’m not saying it’s been an easy ride, I’ve probably worked harder in the past 2 and half years than I have done in my life, it’s been a learning curve, I’ve made plenty of mistakes, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. Last year I decided to set myself goals – some remain still on my to do list, but others have been well and truly accomplished – as well as running all the classes and taking on more staff, last year I took on an admin assistant, launched 2 e-cookbooks ( if anyone is interested!), launched an online bootcamp, launched more bootcamp venues, wrote a book (well almost, nearly finished just a few more hours work to do!) and started on a couple of projects that had been on my to do list far too long, ready to hit the ground running in 2012, and before I go off on maternity leave.

    I’m no different than any of you, so if I can do it you can too, so make 2012 YOUR year and go for it! Just a few pointers from me that I’ve learned over the past few years (and I’m still making mistakes and learning!):

    1. At the start of the year, set yourself goals rather than resolutions, write them down and keep revisiting and revising them if necessary.

    2. Try and have a clear goal of where you want to get to and by when – this will make you more determined to complete tasks, and get a vision of what a finished product or work may look like.

    3. Mark out time in the diary to get on with projects, and don’t get distracted by facebook, websites etc (I am guilty of this, so one of my goals for 2012 is to not get so sidetracked!)

    4. If you don’t meet the deadlines you set, don’t beat yourself up too much – ask if they were realistic in the first place and then extend if necessary. If you didn’t meet them because you were too busy doing point number 3, then give yourself a slap and get on with it!

    5. Sit back every now and then and write down what you’ve done so far – you will probably surprise yourself with what you have achieved, and actually have done more than you think you have.

    6. Be prepared to work harder, and smarter, than you ever have before! If you are a bit of a workaholic, then this will come quite easily and a lot of the time it doesn’t feel like work at all if it is something you are passionate about. The work never stops either, and you have to make your own chances, some may work, some may not, you just have to move on from the ones that don’t and put it down to experience.

    7. BUT – Give yourself rests or risk getting burnout. I’ve just had this happen over the Christmas period – I didn’t really take a proper break at all last year, and as soon as I stopped for Christmas, bam I got ill. I’d had a cold during the year that lasted 3 days, and a dodgy stomach (from food I think) back in May which lasted a few days, but otherwise have been fit and healthy all year. As I type this I’m still not feeling great, and I think I just ran myself in to the ground and when I rested, my body just sort of gave up! I know it’s happened to a number of us over the holiday season and for the same reason I think. I had planned to work over Christmas but instead have given myself a good 12 days off (although still manically busy with house stuff and preparing for our new baby that’s due in just 14 weeks!) Giving yourself regular proper breaks, and totally cutting off from work will help to stop this happening.

    Good luck, and I’d love to know how you get on, you can contact me or find me on facebook or twitter (details below)

    Alice Ramcharran

    Find me on Facebook –

    Follow me on twitter – Pyramidfit

    Moving through menopause: 3 ways to WOW the 40+ woman with resistance training by Kathleen Stewart

    As fitness professionals, we are all aware of the important of resistance training in maintaining or increasing lean body mass and boosting metabolism. For women over the age of 40 who may be approaching or experiencing menopause, it is even more critical to counteract the losses in muscle mass associated with falling oestrogen levels.

    But the mere mention of resistance training still makes many 40+ females recoil in horror. Images of endless repetitions of uninspiring exercises on gym machines (knee extensions and bicep curls, anyone?) still spring to mind. And many otherwise sane, sensible women still harbour the misconception they will develop masculine muscles, which we know isn’t going to happen!

    So how can we, as fitness professionals WOW the 40+ woman with resistance training? Here are three ways that have worked well for my clients. They are equally relevant to the personal trainer or group exercise instructor.

    1. Functional training

    Introduce functional, whole body exercises to maximise muscle action and calorie burn. Ensure muscles are challenged through three planes of motion and at multiple angles. Equipment free is fine. You can gradually increase exercise complexity and use equipment once your clients have mastered the basic principles. My 40+ clients love functional routines – they’re so much more challenging and fun than traditional techniques! And they produce excellent results.

    2. Innovative use of equipment

    Get creative with body bars, dynabands, dumbbells and more! You really are only limited by your imagination. Integrate equipment with functional exercises in a variety of positions – standing, seated, kneeling, side-lying, prone and supine lying.

    3. Frequent changes to keep things fresh

    To encourage adherence, make frequent changes to your conditioning routines or classes. Vary exercise order from one week to the next and change the entire routine every 4 weeks maximum. Too many classes and gym programmes run well beyond their sell-by dates, leaving clients bored and demotivated.

    I hope you enjoy putting these guidelines into practice to get your 40+ female clients first class results and keep them coming back for more. Resistance training need never be boring again!

    Kathleen Stewart, Katsfitness

    Fitness Expert, Menopause Matters magazine

    Hope you have a wonderful week

    Love and Hugs

    Rachel xxx


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