Putting the Fun Back into Fitness with Emma Sandall

Personal training.
In this past year I have been discovering the simple pleasure of a gym workout – pulling and pushing exercises, which give you the chance to focus on training and recruiting specific muscles, thereby building strength and endurance. With weight training you are not only increasing strength, you are also increasing your basal metabolic rate, as, simply put, muscle burns more energy than fat. I have been having personal training sessions with Wes Doyle at Vision Personal Training Randwick, and he has taught me a great deal about strength and also about myself. I asked him about personal training and how he got started.

“Initially I started off as a client of Vision Personal Training Randwick," said Wes. "I was getting married, and I was very busy with my role as a national operations manager, travelling and working long hours. I’ve always been very active and wanting to own and run my own business. This career change combined my passions: business and fitness. Why the Vision program? It focuses on emotions, education, eating and exercise and provides clients with online tracking food and exercise diary. Here, we care when you don’t turn up, so we will call you; we care what your goal is; we care by making sure you are on a journey to getting results. The best thing about being a personal trainer is seeing people developing self confidence.”

Wes at work

Who are your clients and what are their goals? 
“Eighty percent of our clients are here for some form of weight loss, toning or sculpting. The remainder are people who see the value in being coached for a specific program. It’s a bit like a having a tennis coach, or business coach. There are not many people who are self motivated to do exercise, including me! Having a trainer helps you train at your maximum capacity, each and every time. Relapsing and falling off the wagon is normal, and is part of the journey. You need to stop thinking about the destination, and enjoy the small changes along the way.”

How long is a session and what does it entail? 
“A session is 30 minutes. What we do with a client at each session depends on their stage of change. At the start, we focus on the emotions around eating, education about what to eat, then a weekly food plan, and finally the exercise. Emotions, Education, Eating and Exercise. For best results, we recommend having at least two sessions a week (that’s less than one percent of your week). It’s the 42 meals in the week that count the most, not the exercise.”

How do you keep people motivated?
“Everyone is different. Most people are on a journey, so we work with where they are at, and what encourages them to put one foot in front of the other each day. We’re here to give honest feedback and help them develop ways to move forward. Currently I train clients from 26 to 78. My personal passion is training businessmen. They are always too busy to look after their health.”

How do you filter fitness fads and the fact/fiction of new information?
“Always have the client’s readiness to change, goals, and capabilities front of mind. A 45-year-old mother of two won’t want to be doing a clean and press.

What is the most important tip about fitness you can give someone?
“Eat less, move more. It doesn’t have to be hard work, it needs to be smart. This is why we focus on education. PS – don’t Google, there are millions of confusing pages.”

Emma Sandall is an ex-ballerina turned fitness and health guru. She teaches and coaches dance, fitness and Pilates and writes and produces video for all things movement related. Emma runs Body Playground, a space to activate and inspire body and soul. Email: emma@bodyplayground.com.au