About Helen Howells – Personal Trainer
I can’t remember exactly when I decided to be a personal trainer. I have always been keen on keeping fit and active and spent years going to aerobic classes and doing extra abdominal crunches, to try and flatten my tummy. I took up scuba diving in my early 20s and spent several years travelling the coast and abroad to experience some amazing dives.
In my 30’s I needed a change in career direction, but still I didn’t identify personal training as being an option. Instead I decided to join the fire service and make a difference in people’s lives by becoming a firefighter ! By getting an office job at Avon Fire & Rescue Service and then with help and guidance from the officers I met, I began my training for the firefighter recruitment process. I had never been a runner before and didn’t think I could, however now I had a bleep test to pass, so that had to change. I popped along to the local outdoor running track and spoke to the coaches there. They happily invited me to join them in their track sessions and I was welcomed into a group of 14-15 year olds, most of whom would beat me!
When Avon Fire Rescue Service were next recruiting, I applied, feeling confident and prepared. Each step came and went; the written test; bleep test; ladder climb; hose running and breathing apparatus test and I was passing each time ! In the end, and against over 1,000 applicants, I was put on a reserve list, unfortunately, I wasn’t selected.
However, I wasn’t going to stop there and after my experience of a more structured training programme, I decided to spend my time between firefighter recruitment processes by learning more about fitness, diet and nutrition. I embarked on a diploma in Personal Training at Lifetime Health & Fitness in Bristol. Not one for doing things by half, I signed up to taking additional modules of Exercise Referral, Older Adult and Anti & Post-natal fitness.
I found the course so interested and discovered where I had been going wrong in my own training and diet; and why the many abdominal crunches wouldn’t flatten my tummy ! I enjoyed the course so much that I wanted to share what I had learnt and decided I could make a greater difference to people’s lives by personal training and advising in diet and nutrition.
I still had my office job and Avon Fire & Rescue Service, but now I was running fitness sessions for operational firefighters; trainee firefighters and support staff, along with offering guidance to other women aspiring to be firefighters.
Seven years on and HH Fitness is providing personal training to people with a wide range of age, size, weight and fitness levels, across Bristol, Bath and South Gloucestershire. I love the work I do and I hope my enthusiasm rubs off on my clients.
I have recently completed a Certificate in Sports Massage and offer appointments on Saturday mornings at the Portland Therapy Centre, Staple Hill.
As for the future…….
I want HH Fitness to continue to grow, so in turn I can help more people lead fit and healthy lifestyles.
Whatever lays ahead, it will be exciting, busy and motivational and I hope that after reading this, you too will be encouraged to seek your goals and achieve all you wish for.
Good Luck !