ONCE YOU’VE PICKED UP YOUR JAW OFF THE FLOOR AFTER SEEING UMA THURMAN’S DOUBLE, OUR RESIDENT SUPERMODEL, MUM-OF-THREE AND ALL-ROUND LOVELY LADY MICHELLE SMITH – IT WILL SMASH BACK DOWN AS YOU SEE HER DOMINATE THE CIRCUITS WITH AN ATHLETIC PROWESS OF AN OLYMPIAN. SHE’S A LITTLE BIT SUPER HUMAN, BUT HER BRIGHT SMILE AND FABULOUS FANCY DRESS STYLES MAKE HER ONE OF OUR MOST LOVED, LONG-TERM MEMBERS. HER REFRESHING PERSPECTIVE ON HEALTH AND FITNESS COMES FROM MANY YEARS OF LOVE FOR THE INDUSTRY AND RESPECT FOR HER BODY… WE WERE RIDICULOUSLY INSPIRED BY HER ANSWERS AND WE HOPE YOU SOAK UP SOME INSPIRATION FROM THEM, TOO.
What’s your fitness/sport background?
I grew up enjoying and competing in almost every sport that was available to me, particularly loving athletics and tennis (state level). I completed a degree in Human Movement, keen for a career that involved health and/or sport. Following this I worked in injury rehabilitation, worker’s compensation risk assessment, and as a medical representative for orthopaedic surgical products. My husband and I are also partners in golf retail stores.
I crave exercise-induced endorphins and have always been very active. I’m very aware of how exercise transforms your health; a fit and strong body leads to a balanced mind, higher cognitive function, relieves stress, gives you confidence and makes you feel happy. I love what your body can do when you push the limits physically and mentally. Hard training is highly rewarding for me.
What first brought you to Bodies by Ryan (and when did you start)?
I had heard about BBR from a few members and they raved about it. At the time it was winter (July 2018), the weather was terrible and I was training with a group outdoors so I thought I’d give it a go. To be honest, I was also quite interested to meet this Ryan who called his business Bodies by Ryan!
What were your first impressions of everything at BBR?
I loved it from day one. The workouts challenged me. I was immediately inspired by expert trainers and surrounded by like-minded people. Ryan’s passion for wellness and drive to help everyone individually achieve their goals is admirable. The energy created by all the trainers is contagious and the HIIT classes are addictive. Positive vibes keep us going and the key to staying motivated and enjoying. The trainers interact and support everyone in the class and spend time ensuring movements are done correctly which is so important.
What’s different about BBR to previous fitness experiences?
BBR is not like any other gym I’ve experienced. There is a connection at BBR, a friendship circle and an amazing energy that I love. This is generated by the trainers and the members. Sport and training is so much better when it’s fun and social. It doesn’t need to feel like a chore. That being said, it’s very difficult to talk if you’re working as you should be in a session. There’s still an expectation that you push yourself, but then you will always walk out the door smiling.
What have been your biggest changes since starting with BBR?
Physically I am stronger. Running is easier and my tennis is more powerful. I love the extra energy I have everyday. The feeling of accomplishment after pushing myself to the limit is the best.
Has your nutrition changed at all since BBR’s influence?
My diet has always been relatively healthy. I understand the importance of fueling your body with the right nutrition and I enjoy eating good food, especially loaded salads, plenty of fruit and vegetables, and seafood. Fair to say I was born an ectomorph with chicken legs. I have never owned scales, followed a meal plan or counted calories in my life. I have a great appetite and would say it has changed slightly since BBR in that I crave more protein, so I have it! I also couldn’t live without Chardonnay, cheese (especially soft French cheese) and chilli chocolate.
During my uni days I worked as a model in Australia and overseas. Girls looked thin and beautiful but often they were far from healthy. Happiness would fade away with bodies. I was mad that girls were measured and it made me more determined to be healthy. A healthy body and mind is everything.
What are your biggest health/fitness challenges you have overcome or even still working on overcoming?
When I started at BBR I was looking to incorporate more strength work into my exercise regime. Strength training becomes increasingly important as we age and I want to be stronger. I wish there was a miracle solution to the ageing!
How do you mentally get through a really hard HIIT session?
I love it when it’s tough! It’s the endorphin rush and the competition within myself to feel as good as I can and to be strong, fit and healthy. However, when I’m tired I rely more on the support of trainers and those around me and it’s always there. There’s a ‘let’s get through this together’ attitude that is awesome.
What goals are you currently working towards?
I base my health goals on how I feel and how I function every single day. I have three kids and want to do things with my family and things I love with plenty of energy. BBR is part of my routine and makes me feel great.
What’s something special about Michelle Smith that we might not know about you?
Mmm not sure what to divulge here! I have been known to cartwheel in heels (not particularly smart) and jump into pools and off jetties towards the end of parties.
Fave HIIT station? Ball slam, that seems to also relieve stress.
Least fave HIIT station? 50 seconds takes forever pushing those damn sleds.
Fave cafe and your order there? Daisies – almond capp with cinnamon (my friends laugh about my princess coffee order, don’t care it’s good).
Fave cheat meal? Love a good burger (with chips inside). Also eat peanut butter with honey off a big spoon when I need a pick me up.
Fave holiday destination? This is hard because I love many places for different reasons. But if I had to choose one it would be summertime in the South of France. Skiing is a very close second.