For anyone that has ever thought about a career change, hopefully Kirsty will help inspire you to follow your dreams. Unfortunately Kirsty lost her dad to a battle with cancer which changed her perspective on life. After spending her professional career working in marketing, she woke up one day and realised that she had to pursue her passion for health and fitness. Kirst is one woman on a mission to help people live happier and healthier lives. Meet Kirsty, the founder of Body Clarity.
Q. What was your inspiration for leaving your senior position in the corporate world, and starting your own health and wellness business?
I don’t know if it was an inspiration but more of a follow your gut and do something that your truly love kind of deal. When my dad got sick with cancer seven years ago and passed away pretty quickly, this was when I knew that I wanted to make a difference in peoples lives through and health, wellness and fitness. But it took me a while to get there!
I have always been very into fitness and health but then I got swept up in the corporate world. The higher up the ladder I got, the more money I started earning and the older I got, the harder it became to leave. All those “what’s if's” start playing up in my mind. But, I was unhappy and a bit sad and I knew that if I didn't do this, I was REALLY going to regret it! And, if it doesn’t work out, then I’d just go back to what I was doing before but at least I gave it a go!
I made a plan and I went back to uni and got all my qualifications (Certificate III & IV in Fitness, Pre/Post Natal, Pilates and IIN Health Coach Certification), saved money and I started my business on the side whilst working full time until I could make the change.
I remember my uncle saying to me before I made that scary leap. “Kirst, you're going to be doing this for another 40 years, so you have to love it”.
Q. You are one busy lady, balancing Health Coaching and group Fitness, what’s your biggest tip for other women starting their own business?
Just got for it and don’t stress about it if it doesn’t go the way the way you initially planned. Be open to opportunities that come your way and build relationships with those in your industry. Read blogs, go to conferences, seminaries and increase your knowledge and skills through further education. Work on building your brand and looking at avenues to gain further exposure through speaking opportunities or writing for other peoples blogs. Also, be mindful that things will take time and it's not going to just all happen straight away! The biggest thing I had to learn (still today) is to be patient! I would also recommend to keep your job, or have part-time job that was a source of ongoing income whilst starting your own business.
Q. You’ve started running Group Fitness classes in locations around Melbourne, what’s different about what you offer your client’s?
Our Small Group Fitness Classes are bespoke classes tailored for women. We know that two bodies aren’t alike, so we waste our clients time with irrelevant programs, instead we concentrate on what will work for a women’s body, getting results faster and more effectively - no matter age, schedule or lifestyle.
Our classes run outside at the Tan (South Yarra) and Carlton Gardens and are capped at 12 women, ensuring clients receive the full focus and attention of our dedicated and highly experienced female trainers in a small group personal training setting. The best bit is that our classes are all very fresh, new, dynamic and have loads of variety from Boxing, HIIT, Cardio Pilates, Abs/Booty, Full Body Strength and Pre/Post Natal which are designed to keep the body, as well as the mind stimulated and working at their optimum.
Q. What are your non-negotiables when it comes to maintaining your own health and fitness?
1. Listen to your body - We live in a society that is influenced by social media and what other people are doing but we are all very unique and individual. What works in terms of fitness and diet for one person is completely different for another. Find your right balance.
2. Eat well everyday - eat a variety of foods and don’t necessarily cut out a food group if you don’t need too. Always eat lots of veggies and wholefoods. Stay away from things that are refined, processed or fake! The only thing I am reallly really ask my clients to do is to buy organic meat and wild fish. A coffee a day no worries, a drink now and then cool and some chocolate is totally fine. Enjoy life in moderation and balance!
3. Exercise – Move every-day! This maybe a walk, yoga class, Pilates session, outdoor class or run, just make time to get your body moving, even if it’s only for 20 minutes.
4. Keep it simple – There is no such thing a make pill, diet, shake or new exercise fad that will give you long term results. Keep it simple, eat well, exercise daily and follow a 80/20 rule.
Q. What’s one thing that people are surprised about you when they meet you?
That I am Italian as I look very Australian!
Q. What’s the one food trend you are getting sick of?
I love a trend! They keep things interesting, they can be educational and fun! I wouldn’t say that I am getting sick of a trend I am just very cautious about some of them. Lately, “healthy” muesli's that are popping up everywhere. I always show my clients how to read labels and what they should be looking out for. Especially with muesli’s, a lot of them are really high in sugar from being toasted in honey and containing dried fruit, then not to mention what we put on top of all that – hello sugar overload and lots of calories. So just be careful as when something as marketed at being healthy, it’s not necessarily always the way!
Q. If you could train any client, who would it be? I don’t think I have one. I love all my clients and they are all as equally important to me! As a business we are heavily invested in supporting, nourishing and caring for our clients to see them reach and maintain their health and fitness goals whoever they are! The reward for me is seeing how happy they are inside and out when they reach those goals – this always reminds me why I am doing this.
Q. What’s on the horizon next for Kirsty and Body Clarity? The business is growing which is so exciting! We are growing our outdoor fitness classes and locations, we have just launched into the corporate workplace with a new Pilates corporate program and we are building our online health coaching program. We are having lots of fun and we love our clients and that is the most important thing to me.
Find out more about Kirsty's business Body Clarity, which includes group fitness classes, health coaching, corporate clinical pilates and much more bodyclarity.com.au