It is My Botique’s pleasure to introduce Nicci, a mother and personal trainer hailing from the Northern Beaches of Sydney who risked her livelihood and that of her families, to follow her dreams.
Nicci is an inspiration to us all, not only when it comes to her outstanding fitness achievements (ninja warrior, dragon boat racing and NZ adventure medalist), but also when it comes to taking the leap into a life-changing decision that takes an insurmountable amount of confidence and drive to achieve.
Have a read of her story, as well as her advice to get you up and moving, and the benefits of training when it comes to the quality of your skin.
Hailing from the UK, I originally studied Sciences at university which initially took me down the path of project and operational management in the world of pharmaceuticals, which in turn lead to a successful career in Digital marketing.
A few years later, which included a move to Australia, followed by the birth of my 3 beautiful children, and a tally of sporting achievements, my occupation focus seemed to shift. I had just finished a gruelling 8hr adventure race in NZ, and despite winning a medal for my efforts, I was filled with dread. I was unable to place it at first, but then it clicked- I resented the fact of having to go back to my desk job. Why would I do something (daily!) that I dreaded so much? I gave myself a kick up the butt and followed my own advice I give others… follow your dreams!
I needed something that aligned my passions and previous life experiences … science, biology, fitness, understanding human behaviour, and helping people reach their goals. My Ninja Warrior training experience (and five seconds of fame) allowed me the privilege of meeting some amazing humans, especially befriending a group of inspirational Personal Trainers. It was a light bulb moment and it became so very clear that my path now lead me down a career change to become a Personal Trainer. There was nothing I could do but pursue my new calling. This new found goal surged through me and I couldn’t stop it even if I wanted to. I resigned from my digital media company, researched PT courses, talked to my PT friends and I was back to studying again 2 weeks later! I qualified as an AIF Master Trainer Cert III/IV and Nicci the Personal Trainer was born!
I have been asked if it was daunting to give up everything and start again, and yes absolutely! Not everything is roses especially if you have family or other commitments that you need to work around. You have the associated financial drop, and time is a precious commodity. You need to study again plus keep up your own training, and then there are kids activities, pickups/drop-offs from kindy, as well as normal daily living commitments. Timetables inevitably change (or get turned upside down), so everyone in my family had to learn how to juggle.
What I love most about being a PT is that I can be there to motivate my clients, push them, and teach them about our human body – your human body! I can help my clients be the best they can be in each session, and I cherish the opportunity. The most rewarding and satisfying outcome is witnessing my clients seeing a positive change in themselves- a shift in mindset that also dominoes down to your entire family. Mum or Dad aren’t so tired and angry anymore. Their sleep is better. They have more energy to play with the kids. Not to mention the amazing physical changes like hitting milestones like being able to fit into that little black dress you’ve been staring at in your wardrobe for the last couple of years. Everything brings enormous pride (as it should) and the understanding that, Yes, anyone can really do anything if you put your mind to it. To know that I have played a part in that is extremely motivating.
What I love is that exercise is beneficial in so many ways. For example:
1) When you are not at your best, you suffer from low self-esteem and low self-confidence. It will be evident in what you wear and how you act around people, and how you go about your everyday lives. You begin to lose who you are. Exercise can help. It is a powerful depression fighter, it promotes all kinds of changes in the brain, including neural growth, reduces inflammation, and new activity patterns that promote feelings of calm and well-being. It releases endorphins, which are powerful chemicals in your brain that energizes you and makes you feel good. Exercise gives you a higher self-esteem. Regular activity is an investment in your mind, body, and soul. When it becomes habit, it can foster your sense of self-worth and make you feel strong and powerful. You’ll feel better about your appearance and, by meeting even small exercise goals, you’ll feel a sense of achievement.
2) Exercise is a natural and effective anti-anxiety treatment and stress reliever. It relieves tension, stress, boosts physical and mental energy, and enhances well-being. Physical activity also helps to relax the muscles and relieve tension in the body. Since the body and mind are so closely linked, when your body feels better so too, will your mind.
3) Exercise gives you a sharper memory and stronger thinking power. The same endorphins that make you feel better will also help you concentrate, and you become mentally sharper.
4) Exercise stimulates the growth of new brain cells and can help prevent age-related decline. An interesting bit of research from a 2014 study (by researchers at Canada’s McMaster University) found that exercising can actually reverse skin ageing (even when it’s taken up later in life), and that people who exercised regularly exhibited younger-looking skin than their peers
5) Exercise gives you a better sleep. Even short bursts of exercise in the morning or afternoon can help regulate your sleep patterns.
6) Exercise gives you more energy. Increasing your heart rate several times a week will give you more get-up-and-go. Start off with just a few minutes of exercise per day, and increase your workout as you feel more energized.
7) Regular exercise helps tone muscles, of course. Firmer muscles help you look (and therefore feel) better.
8) Exercise will help with the health of your skin. By increasing blood flow, exercise helps nourish skin cells. Blood carries oxygen and nutrients to working cells throughout the body, including the skin, in addition to providing oxygen, blood flow also helps carry away waste products, including free radicals, from working cells. Therefore a good workout will flush some of that cellular debris out of the system! Therefore you can think of it as cleansing your skin from the inside out…!
Apart from your liver, the skin is the biggest detoxifying agent. Sweating removes toxins which not only makes you feel better, it rejuvenates your skin. So when we push ourselves, and you bring on a good sweat from a session, you are increasing the blood flow and sending vital essential nutrients, hormones and increased oxygen to our skin. This gives you that healthy glow. So many many many benefits!
I have created the company Tonic and Tribe (TNT) to offer total body functional training with mobility to everyone and anyone. My ultimate aim is to get the message across that whatever you dream, whatever you want to do, you really can do it. Neither age nor weight are disqualifiers when it comes to fitness. Jump outside of that comfort zone, push your boundaries and simply do your very best at whatever you want to do in life. You are succeeding by just giving it a go!
My Botique would like to thank Nicci and her very personal and professional insights into the world of fitness and her journey to becoming a PT. If you would like to know more about Nicci and Tonic and Tribe you can visit our website or email Nicci directly on Nicci@tonicandtribe.com.au
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