Polly Hale Personal Trainer and creator of The Fit Mum Formula tells Sundried about her journey to fitness as a mother of two young children and how her online system provides support for mums who want to look and feel their best.
Why did you create The Fit Mum Formula?
As a mum to two young girls and with a house to run, to be honest I don’t get out a lot! That’s the whole reason I created an online system – for mums like me to be able to access the support and resources they need to look and feel their best. That being said, I love fun activities that are physically challenging, and have a friend who runs pole-fitness classes so I’m going to one of her workshops soon!
Tell us about your journey to fitness? Where did it all start?
I was at professional dance school years ago so was very fit, but changed direction after the pressure got too much. My story is an unusual one. I was very ill in my late teens with anorexia, so after going through that I now appreciate the value of having good physical and mental health. Exercise is my therapy, literally.
What are your training goals now?
To continue to get fitter, stronger, and healthier without exercise taking over the rest of my life.
Tell us an unusual fact we wouldn’t know about you:
I’ve done a bit of modelling and acting work. I was in the James Bond film Skyfall for a split second, and spent two days running through the freezing English Channel Sea one December for The Sun newspaper!
What would future you, tell yourself when you were starting out?
That perfection does not exist. Progress and learning are continual, and it’s as much about the journey as the end result.
Do you follow a specific nutrition plan? If so, what/when do you eat?
I prefer to eat a high protein, low carb, moderate fat meal, as I have a big appetite so it keeps me full without gaining a ton of weight! I love meat, fish, eggs, fruit, Greek yogurt, nuts, and more carbs like oats, bananas etc. around workouts. I use protein powders too, and I eat tons of vegetables!
What do you do to keep your clients motivated? Do you have any top tips to keep motivated?
I think the motivation comes later. Once you feel the endorphins, and the way you feel physically and mentally once you start exercising regularly and eating well, and are seeing results for it, that’s incredibly motivating and nobody wants to give that up. But you don’t feel that at first. I think integrating exercise as a manageable habit is more realistic at first, then they’ll feel motivated once they start feeling awesome! It’s addictive!
Talk us through your training regime.
I do HIIT workouts three times a week, usually early morning before the kids are up – that’s ‘my time’! They’re pretty intense so definitely sufficient to keep me fit and strong as well as in good shape. I do lots of walking as we do the school and nursery run on foot, so that’s an hour a day at least. Sometimes on the weekend we’ll go for a family walk, if there’s time between all the kids’ various activities and classes.
How do you keep your fitness knowledge up to date?
Luckily I love learning. I read books, articles, blogs, research studies, and listen to podcasts every day, as much for enjoyment as personal development. New information is always released so it’s important to stay up to date with what’s relevant to your clients.
What are your top 3 trainer tips?
- Understand what’s going through your clients’ minds. They’re not passionate about fitness like we are, and maybe never will be. Show them that all their effort is worth it.
- Be human. Anyone who is perfect 100% of the time isn’t normal! I tell my clients and followers if I’ve had a bad day. Then they know I really do understand them.
- Don’t be dogmatic. There is more than one way to approach exercise and diet selection. Everyone is unique so don’t be tied to the belief that your way is the best way for them.
If you could only do one workout for the rest of your life, what would it be?
My own rest-based HIIT workouts. They cover all of strength, endurance and cardio, and they’re adaptable as you progress so they never get too easy.
Why work with Sundried?
I will always choose quality over quantity and Sundried certainly is very good quality. Also ethical and environmental issues are very important to me. We eat organic food and buy recycled paper goods, so it stands that I’ll extend that to my workout clothing too.
Favorite fitness quote:
No matter how slow you go, you are still lapping everyone on the couch.