Meet Kit Redfern, one of our VPTs at Gymbox Westfield. Here she shares with us her experiences as a fitness model, how watching her clients transform makes her cry, and how working at Gymbox keeps her constantly inspired.
Hi Kit! How are you today?
Hi there, I'm good thanks, I've had a busy but interesting day going through client updates to make sure everyone's on track, and squeezing in my own training between sessions.
What has it been like working at Gymbox since you started?
Time has flown by! I've really enjoyed my time working at Gymbox so far. I feel like I've been given an amazing opportunity to surround myself with like-minded people, and work with some extremely dedicated clients.
How is Gymbox different to other gyms that you've worked at?
The big thing that I notice compared to places I've worked before is how motivated everyone is – and that's everyone from the members to the trainers to the reception staff. I really like how keen everyone is to train together, and share their skills, and I'm constantly inspired by what others here are doing with their workouts. The atmosphere in the evenings too, is unlike anything I've experienced before.
You specialise in bikini bodies, can you explain how that works?
A bikini body is a very subjective thing – everyone has a different idea of how they wish to look, and their own reasons for reaching that state. It's less about an actual bikini than it is about getting my clients to the point that they feel body-confident and happy in themselves. For some that means slimming down, for others that means building curves. Everyone I work with is unique in their goal.
Do you only train women?
Nope, I train a few men as well, and the process is not all that different, but I find my forte is fine-tuning the female physique. The guys I work with work insanely hard and progress well, but setting and reaching goals is a lot to do with understanding a person's mindset, and I get that connection much quicker with my girls.
Do you think women are under too much pressure to have perfect bodies?
For sure, there's way too much emphasis on image and having the 'perfect body', and I would love for everyone to see themselves in a more positive light. I find training helps a great deal with this though, in learning to appreciate what our bodies can do, as much as the way they look. I love when a client comes to me wanting to change their shape and then starts setting performance-based goals along the way, as they enjoy pushing the boundaries of what they're physically capable of.
Isn't fitness about being healthy as much as being aesthetically pleasing?
Definitely, but I don't find that feeling healthy is anywhere near as powerful a motivator as an aesthetic goal. The idea of having more energy, sleeping better or lower risk of disease isn't often enough to make a person go to the gym, but when they're there for another reason they will become healthier anyway – you can't fake fitness.
You underwent a nine month transformation and won the WBFF Pro Card in the bikini category. What was life like over this period?
I started prepping for my first show when I'd just moved into a new house share and started a new job, so I built my life as best I could around my training requirements. The hardest part was juggling work with my prep as at the time I was still building my client base and had to spend a lot of hours at the gym. Towards the end I was on about five hours sleep per night, and relying on lots of strong coffee to get me through the day. I certainly didn't manage to balance everything perfectly and there were times when I just wanted to give up, but I think that getting through those tough times made the process more rewarding, and have given me a better insight into what my clients are dealing with when they struggle or have a bad day.
What made you want to do this?
I decided to compete because I was new in town, and wanted to surround myself with people who loved training as much as I did. It was months before I met any other competitors, but some of those girls are still my closest friends and biggest inspiration now.
How did winning feel?
Like a huge relief, but I could hardly believe it – my chances were slim and I had told myself before I stepped onstage that I would be happy whatever the outcome, so I was more prepared not to win. I only slept two hours that night from the excitement.
Do you feel the same way when one of clients wins a bikini competition?
It's even more of an adrenaline rush when it's one of my clients. I'll be sitting on the edge of my seat all through the awards, and I'll leap up and cheer when they win. Recently when one of my girls won her WBFF Pro Card I started crying!
Sweet! What makes you happy?
Endorphins! But also celebrating the little things. Whether that's a coffee with a friend, getting a seat on the tube, or a client telling me she felt so great she went to work without make up.