Val ThompsonNone of us like growing old, me especially!  I have exercised for the majority of my life and have always loved it.

I have done the high impact stuff like step, running, etc.  But, over the past few years, it very slowly started to dawn that this wasn’t working for me. Or rather my body was not was not as accepting of this type of exercise.  I was beginning to have pain after exercise.  Pain which was not bad or debilitating but enough to make me start thinking.

The turning point was in 2009 when I was involved in a very high speed motorsport accident.

I was incredibly lucky and only had a 2 night stay, courtesy of the NHS. After this I knew I had to revisit my exercise regime.  Since meeting Karen, I have not looked back.  I didn’t realise that my flexibility, or lack of, was really hampering me.  I now work with Karen on a 1-1 basis and I can honestly say that I have never looked or felt better.  The tailored regime suits my personality. I’m target focussed and we work to that strength.

The best thing about working with Karen is her ‘whole body’ approach – not just the body, but the mind as well.

I realised that this was exactly what I was looking for.  If the mind-set is not right then the body is not right.  It isn’t a question of ‘mind over matter’, the mind and matter have to be in harmony.

Why do I know this…?

Well, throughout my life I have suffered with stress and depression. I’ve had time off work and seen several counsellors.  But,  I was dealing with the parts as individuals.  I have discovered that the ‘whole body’ approach gets far better results.

Yes, I still suffer from depression, I always will.  That is me, but I am in control and the exercise is a key factor in that control.

Since working with Karen my fitness has improved beyond my wildest dreams and, no, I am not joking.  It is hard work, she does push me hard.  But, at 54, I am doing more exercise than ever before.

I have changed my style and  I now cycle rather than run.  It has much less impact and I absolutely love it. My goal this year is to ride for  60-75 miles.

Just as an aside; I do still complete in motorsport more now than ever.  The accident did not put me off – the moral of this tale is “even if in the past you have not enjoyed exercise, take a step back and come at it from a different angle.  Like me you may discover something complete new about yourself.”