Bristolian Kelly Trayes, 32, is a member of Gymbox Covent Garden. We discover what she loves most about Gymbox, why one of her happiest moments was when she could touch her toes without bending her knees.
Hi Kelly! What are you hugging and why?
I'm hugging the Stair Climber because it provides a variety of workouts, depending on the results you are looking for. I love getting creative with this machine! You can choose to from one of the pre-programmed work-outs, or set it manually yourself. It could appear a bit mundane at first, as if it was a never ending stairwell, but you can get a really good work out on a wide range of muscles for the legs and glutes by walking up in a squat position, side stepping, walking backwards and include some donkey kicks to add something a bit extra. Of course, you can even change the speed settings to suit your cardio work out too!
Aside from a sexy piece of kit, what else do you love about Gymbox?
I love the culture and environment. It is full of motivated individuals and Very Personal Trainers who take their training a bit more seriously than other gyms I've been before. Even on an 'off day' Gymbox is able to turn you 'on' because no one wants to get left behind!
What does Gymbox offer you that other gyms haven't been able to?
There are certain bits of equipment like the Stair Climber, that other gyms don't have. Gymbox are always the first to offer fresh, new and fun classes which can give you a break from the normal daily grind on the treadmill or lifting weights. All of the classes I've attended have had really good instructors who aren't afraid to challenge and motivate you to push harder.
Tell us what your weekly training schedule looks like
I aim to train five times a week as it's close to work. Monday will usually be leg and glutes day. Tuesday is cardio. Wednesday is arms and core. Thursday is cardio. And Friday is back, chest and anything else that feels it needs some extra work before the weekend! I might divert and take a class instead, but the idea is to keep my body guessing what's going to happen, rather than getting stuck into a predictable routine. I found it helped having a session with Simone, one of the VPT's. She broke me for a whole week after one hour!
Impressive! Do you have any fitness goals?
I've always done sports, therefore my life time goal is to never stop! I feel worse for not training and want to maintain a good level of cardio and stamina included in my workouts, whilst also focusing on strength work. One of my goals is to build strength lost through an old shoulder injury whilst improving my posture and flexibility again.
Out of all our classes, do you have a favourite?
I actually have a couple of favourite classes for different reasons. One being Kettlebells, and Drill Sergeant. These provide cardio and strength based exercises. If you want a hard core cardio workout then do the spin class! I would like to try one of the boxing classes next and maybe Bartendaz.
What's the most challenging fitness goal you've achieved so far?
Ha-ha! It may sound a bit simplistic or silly, but for me one of the happiest moments was when I could touch my toes without bending my knees! I could feel my legs, hips and back gradually become looser the more aware I became of my body, and the specific exercises and stretches required to attain this goal. The overall goal still hasn't been reached, but the progress is definitely noticeable and rewarding!
Have you come across any bad training outfits in your previous gyms?
YES! There are many new funky styles and that's not necessarily for me to judge, but when I see people wearing jeans, flip flops, shirts or anything restrictive and NOT gym wear, I do begin to wonder.
You have a music degree – is music important to your training?
Music and training go hand in hand! It can sometimes depend on my mood and what training I am doing on that particular day, but generally I will listen to some afro-beats, christian rock or R&B / hip hop. One of my favourite DJs is in the gym, DJ Hatim Funky. I often switch off my own music because this guy plays some bangers, and he's even motivating to watch as he dances and shows pure love for what he's doing. I think I increased my treadmill speed a few notches that day!
How do you feel when you leave the gym, compared to when you enter it?
I always feel like it was time well worth spent because I'm achy, tired but also energised. That's always a good sign of a productive work out, especially when you wake up feeling it too!