Pic: Leonie Isaac
Our women in fitness series is a celebration of fly girls doing fly things. Meet Nadine – a health and fitness buff who went from ‘being the chubby kid at the back’ in fitness classes, to pursuing a full-time career in health and fitness. She’s now a personal trainer, fitness coach and Muay Thai/K1 fighter (and she recently fought – and won! – her first professional C-Class fight at the Muay Thai Grand Prix – yes girl!)
Since childhood, I’ve always been into exercise. My parents sent me to dance classes, swimming lessons, athletics club and even table tennis club. But truth be told, I was never really any good. I was always the chubby kid at the back.
When I got older, I joined the gym and while I did go to the classes – and occasionally spent 20 minutes on a treadmill – I really had no clue what it meant to be fit and healthy. My lifestyle outside the gym negated all the good work I was doing in my weekly spin, pump and aerobics classes. My yo-yo dieting, over-eating and drinking resulted in me being diagnosed as “morbidly obese” and my family history of diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure (illnesses that beset my community) was making a b-line in my direction.
The tipping point
I reached a point of being totally fed-up. More importantly I was even fed-up of being fed-up. I needed to lose weight. I wanted to be happy when I looked in the mirror, I wanted to feel good on the inside, I wanted to challenge myself and do something different. I wanted to inspire others, I wanted to change the trajectory of my life and I wanted to be remembered. With that said, I knew, I was the only one in control of my own happiness and I had to change things up.
So, I randomly looked up “boxing gyms near me” online and found what I thought was a boxing gym, which would be relatively easy for me to get to. To cut a long story short, I failed to read the full description and ended up going to a Muay Thai Gym. This is where it all began. In the space of a little over three years I have lost over 40kg. I also went from saying I would never compete or fight to having several Muay Thai / K1 kick boxing fights under my belt (with many more in the pipeline). I became a fully qualified personal trainer, and I challenged myself in ways I never thought I could (or would). More importantly I found something that put me on the right path to getting my happy back and have given me a platform to inspire and help others.
Going full force
This year I am going full force with regards to pursuing a career in the health, fitness and wellbeing sector. I’m building my PT business and continuing to help my clients be fitter and healthier and giving them the tools to sustain it. I also plan to increase the number of community based fitness classes I host. I appreciate not everyone has the means to invest in a personal trainer or gym membership and I am keen to engage with local communities and breakdown barriers to exercise. Check out @flexandsweat on Facebook for upcoming classes.
In February I hosted a “Fitness Fun House” event with an organisation called Hustle and Heels. This was my first of this kind. I definitely found a love for organising events, securing sponsorship and sourcing venues and I would like to do more pop-up fitness events and even collaborate with other health and fitness professionals should the opportunity arise. Watch this space.
My love and respect for the sport that got me to where I am today, Muay Thai and K1 kick boxing, goes from strength to strength. I still have a lot of fight in me and a strong desire to compete, so it goes without saying that I will continue to compete and make a name for myself on the UK Muay Thai and K1 kick boxing scene.
Nadine’s fitness and health tips
Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can. And don’t give up.NadinePersonal Trainer and Muay Thai / K1 Fighter