If you’re in need of a little motivation to keep your fitness regime going, or even to start a new one, then getting some inspiration from Jenny from ‘Jennifer Sophie Fitness & Lifestyle’ is a good place to start.
Based in Hitchin, Jenny is a freelance personal trainer, beginners run coach, and is about to qualify as a pilates instructor. She left a job in PR and retrained to start her dream career in the fitness industry.
Even though she has an extremely busy schedule, Jenny took the time to chat with Mums Off Duty about what she does, how she helps her clients, and shares some top tips on how us mums can incorporate fitness and wellbeing into our busy lives.
How long have you worked in the fitness industry?
Fitness has always been a big part of my life in one shape or form so it’s amazing to be able to do something I’m passionate about, that helps people, and to be able to call it my job!
I re-trained as a personal trainer just over a year ago and I spent some time after I qualified working for Nuffield Health, to get some industry experience. I went freelance at the end of last year and set up my own little business, Jennifer Sophie Fitness & Lifestyle.
It’s so nice getting up and doing something I love every day, and I can’t wait to see what the future brings!
What services do you offer to clients?
I currently offer personal training at home or in a private gym facility. These can be one-to-one sessions or there’s the option to train with a friend or get a small group together.
Outside of the gym, I offer beginners running coaching which is an 8-week course designed to help people work up to running their first 5km.
I run ballet fitness classes and once I’ve finished my pilates instructor qualification, I’ll be offering classes and one-to-one sessions in that as well. I also work with a lovely company called Strive Fitness, who offer awesome circuits-based classes.
I’m also working towards getting my full dance teaching qualifications so when I’m not in the gym you’ll find me doing a bit of teaching with Hitchin & Sandy Dance Academy. I like being busy!
Do you live a super healthy lifestyle?
To me, a healthy lifestyle definitely isn’t about depriving yourself and living off a lettuce leaf a day. I try and have an 80/20 balance, where I’m fuelling my body with good, nutritious food 80% of the time, so that I can relax around food and indulge in the yummy stuff (the soul food!) without having to panic or feel guilty. I have a major sweet tooth and, to me, a life without chocolate and prosecco would be a very sad one!
How do you keep yourself motivated and inspired to workout everyday?
I’m training for a half Ironman triathlon at the moment, so having the race on the horizon is a great motivator. There are always days when you wake up and the last thing you feel like doing is getting into a freezing cold pool at 6am, but I just remind myself how much better I’ll feel afterwards and picture myself crossing that finishing line.
In general I think motivation just comes from finding exercise that you enjoy, having a clear goal, and not being too hard on yourself. It takes time and patience, so just embrace the process.
How would you encourage a mum to try one of your classes or personal training sessions?
Quite a few of my clients are mums who have older children and are coming back to exercise. I think personal training is great for mums as it means you’ve got your exercise sessions in the diary.
I’m not a parent myself (unless my naughty little sausage dog counts!) but I know how hectic life can be for mums. Often you can end up putting yourself last, and time is at a premium. With personal training you’ve got someone there to plan your sessions for you, keep you motivated and provide all the support that you need to incorporate exercise into your lifestyle.
Group classes are also great as you’ve got that social element and a support network – it makes exercise so much more fun!
What are your top three tips on little changes we can make to improve our overall health and wellbeing?
Starting with little changes is definitely the key to success. When you decide you want to improve your health and fitness it’s easy to fall into the trap of trying to change everything all at once — it ends up being overwhelming and unsustainable, so you don’t get results.
The changes you make really depend on where you’re at and what you’re trying to achieve. It could be something as simple as, “I’ll only have one sugar in my tea instead of two,” or, “I’ll go out for a 10 minute walk once a day,” to start with. It’s all about creating little stepping stones that will lead you towards your goal.
In general I’d say:
- Fuel your body with good, nutritious food – stuff that’s going to taste good, fill you up and provide you with lots of nutrients so you feel great.
- Get your body moving – whether it’s personal training, shaking your thing in a Zumba class, or, to begin with, just taking the stairs instead of the lift. It’s amazing what a difference it makes to your energy levels.
- Don’t be too hard on yourself and let your motivation come from a positive place – it’s about taking care of your body and treating it well, not punishing it!
Special Mums Off Duty offer!
Jenny is currently offering 3 for 2 on personal training sessions but our lucky Mums Off Duty readers can enjoy an additional 10% discount. To quality for this fab offer, all you need to do is make sure you ‘Like’ the Mums Off Duty Facebook page and then quote ‘Mums Off Duty’ when booking your session with Jenny.