Guest post: Bethanie

A post about exercise and its affect on Bethanie's physical and mental health. Bethanie has been on an amazing journey of healing and growth:

"I have been a member of EL fitness for just over a year, and I can honestly say it was the best thing I ever did for myself. I suffer from anxiety and depression as well as borderline personality disorder and low self-esteem. I was stuck in a rut and feeling very low.

A leaflet came through my door advertising EL Fitness. I wasn’t very active and I was currently off sick from work with nothing to do. After a long discussion with my husband I decided to give the number on the leaflet a call.

I explained on the phone that I was looking to join a community that made me feel welcome and a part of something, get active and boost my self-esteem.

Emily said that I should come along to camp and see for myself what EL fitness was all about. She said that she offers a free week trial. I agreed and was actually looking forward to my first session. I then got a phone call from a family member. She asked if I had joined Bootcamp and I said I was going to do a week's trial to see what it was like. It was a strange coincidence that this person was also a member of EL fitness. This made me feel a bit better as they said they would accompany me to my first session.

Before I knew it, it was time for my first session at Bootcamp. I was a little nervous to start with but everyone was so kind and welcoming. I was scared that everyone would watch me whilst doing the exercises. This wasn’t the case, in fact people were very encouraging and even cheered me on telling me how well I was doing. I remember one lady, Lisa told me that everyone was on their own personal journey and everyone helped each other achieve their goals.

I found the exercising hard but at the end of the session I felt a sense of achievement that I had done it and done my best. I also felt really good about myself and I have never felt as I happy as I did afterwards. I couldn’t wait to do it all again.

I was hooked, I had become an active boot camper, something I never thought I would be. I still found the exercising fun and challenging but I also felt I was getting better. It didn’t just help my mental health but of course my physical health as well. I was feeling fitter than I ever been in my life, I could do things that I couldn't do before such as a full sit up or running. I was always encouraged and supported along the way.

I’ve never met a nicer group of people than the people at boot camp. I was invited to a lot of social gatherings including a Christmas party. I had so much fun.

A year later and I’m still hooked. Emily is very motivating and even during the pandemic she provided online live sessions to keep me sane. I hope to have many more happy memories with EL Fitness."

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