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70-year-old Annabelle is one of the familiar faces you might bump into here at Bramley Baths. She’s been a regular for some time now, and has been on quite a journey with her fitness instructor Jennie.

This is the second part of Annabelle’s story, which we hope will inspire you to reach the heights as she has. Part one can be read here.

“It’s really important to keep coming regularly, even if you’re not feeling well. Once you get out of the routine of coming, I’ve always found it’s a struggle to make it back.

“That’s my biggest tip if you’re wanting to become fitter, and particularly if you suffer ill health or are looking ahead to their 71st birthday and have arthritis and other problems like me! 

“People sometimes use that as an excuse for no longer coming, so it’s best not to get out of that routine of coming, even if you feel you might not want to – I go through the pain barrier if I have to!

“I’m not here to become a champion. My aim is to become stronger, to be on top of my arthritis. Gentle regular exercise and patience are so important at first – you don’t need to have sweat pouring off you or killing yourself. A little bit done regularly has helped me gradually build my strength up.

“It’s the regularity that’s key.

“I’m lucky to have Jennie as my personal trainer, but you can talk to any of the staff here. Ask them for advice, everybody is so welcoming and they have real skills. That’s what makes it so much better to come here than a faceless gym chain.

“Some women and older people find gyms intimidating, but I’ve never felt that at Bramley Baths. My sessions are tailored to suit me and every day life, like carrying heavy shopping! There’s no-one judging you, it’s all about support and being made to feel welcome.”

Keep an eye out for part 3 of Annabelle’s journey later this week.