Various workshops attended on sport and fitness techniques injury prevention, strength and conditioning, behaviour strategies, neuroscience, sport and fitness psychology, somatics, feldenkrais, franklin method, developmental movement and developmental psychology, attachment theory, psychotherapeutic movement.
Work-wise, my story of how I got to where I am now starts 18 years ago with me teaching a few fitness classes alongside my career in strategic financial marketing. Realising in 2004 that the corporate world was not for me, I set up as the first mobile personal trainer in Edinburgh. Working one-to-one with people I became fascinated with the effect that working on the body can have on the mind and vice versa.
I gradually moved into coaching sport, specifically coaching running and triathlon. I focused on helping people to develop efficient ways of moving and preventing injuries so that they could keep doing the sport that they enjoy and reap the benefits of consistent training. During this time I also studied the psychology of exercise and performance.
In 2008 I undertook in depth training in studio based Pilates to deepen my understanding of human mechanics and anatomy in motion. And this is where my personal story of how I got to where I am now begins. My pilates training had a profound effect on me. As I began to move with alignment and true intention I experienced a complete sense of physical, emotional and mental wellbeing. At the time I was a successful international athlete, yet I discovered that my physical fitness and athletic success was fundamentally built on a weak core of low self esteem. During my teens I had suffered from anorexia and went on to develop a decade long struggle with bulimia. While I thought that I was fully recovered through talking therapies, I realised that I was actually still very much a compulsive exerciser and still punishing my body which was holding onto patterns of protection and safeguarding. I was not moving, nor living, well. With great teachers I learned how to build myself up from the inside out, and how to listen to and understand my body's signals. I came away from my involvement in sport in order to focus on me and my full recovery. This different kind of strength I was building ultimately built a firm inner belief in myself, and a more whole me. It is for this reason that I now work with a specialised interest in eating disorder recovery. I am privileged to work with other professionals in this field supporting those dealing with EDs and also educating fitness professionals on the issue. This period of my life also led me to working with those dealing with stress, anxiety, panic attacks - all of which I have overcome through working with my body.
As my work has evolved I have come to work with an integrated approach to the body and mind. I find myself drawn to sport and exercise as being more than just physical practices and similarly I have come to believe that we cannot heal emotional hurts or develop emotional resilience without involving the body in some aspect.
For me, sport gives me a mental clarity, space, resilience and endurance that I cannot find elsewhere. Actually I've never enjoyed sport as much as I now do, now that my mind and body are in complete harmony with how I am moving. My own sports of choice these days are mountain and road biking, trail running, climbing, and snowboarding.
I also appreciate the power of quiet and stillness and taking time to listen in to what I am feeling and how I am. I come away from this refreshed and with a renewed sense of my priorities. Yoga, cooking, writing and drawing and often where I can find this sense of quiet.