Time to get serious

19 Mar
Time to get serious

After really enjoying the last two and a half weeks since we moved to London, it’s now time to buckle down and find jobs! Rob has had job offers thrown at him left and right, but I haven’t been looking properly until now. I finished (and passed!) my last assessment on Saturday, so I just have to wait until the end of this week for that little piece of paper that says I’m a certified personal trainer.

I had my first job interview today, and the job is basically mine if I want it. It involves working with an agency as a self-employed trainer, where I pay a small licence fee to them monthly but get to keep every other cent I earn. In return, they pay for my ongoing education costs and provide all marketing material. Everything sounds great, except for the place where I would be training. The bonus is it’s only a 10 minute walk from my house, but I’m not sure if it’s a place I can achieve what I want to.Β I have another interview tomorrow at an incredibly swish gym in central London, so I’ll see what comes of that.

Before we assumed our grown-up responsibilities, Rob and I spent Friday walking around London. It was a gorgeous day, and we walked from Clapham to Chelsea, which took almost three hours because of a few stops on the way. We’re the kinds of people who walk everywhere, despite others telling us our destinations are not walking distance!

We conveniently walked by the Whole Foods which is about a half hour walk from our apartment. This was the first Whole Foods I’d ever been in! Rob thought I was crazy for being so excited. He kept saying, “you know this is a grocery store, right?!” In the end, I didn’t buy anything but I know I will be back.

We then checked out the apartment we first thought we were going to move into. Wow, am I glad we didn’t move there! The area is quite dodgy, and I would not have felt safe walking home from the train station by myself.

The only downside to us not taking it is that it’s literally about 50 steps from one of only two serious bodybuilding gyms in London. The other gym is further north, and doesn’t let women in! How messed up is that?! It doesn’t matter how serious you are, the guys don’t want you in there. Doesn’t really help in breaking the gender stereotype, huh?

When I walked into Yorky’sΒ in head to toe Lululemon, the woman behind the desk raised her eyebrows at me. Her introduction was: “This isn’t a fitness gym, just so you know.” I laughed and reassured her that both Rob and I are bodybuilders and there to be serious. Of course, I was all bundled up so she couldn’t see my blazing guns. LOL.

We had the full tour and WOW. Rob described it as looking like a torture chamber from a Saw movie. No matter how serious you think you are about training, I can guarantee that at least 90 per cent of the people reading this would never want to step foot in there more than once.

All the equipment for various body parts were split into separate rooms underground. It was weird: you could almost feel the pain that had happened between the four walls. Ronnie Coleman, Phil Heath and Jay Cutler have all trained there, just to name a few. This is a gym where you can grunt, drop the weights, or scream as loud as you can – and know that no-one will bat an eye.

Depending on what happens with work, Rob and I are planning to train there at least twice a month. The two owners of the gym are both successful competition coaches, so I’m definitely keen to chat with them about my contest goals. I also like knowing that they don’t let people in who aren’t completely serious.

The main reason I wanted to check out Chelsea was:

The home of the one and only shop in London that stocks Lululemon. It’s not an actual Lulu store, but stocks a variety of brands. They had a better selection than I was expecting: about five jackets, five different pairs of tights, a couple of shorts, and about 10 different tops. The prices were slightly higher than what I was paying in Australia, so I think I’m just going to start shopping online – I’ll get a much better selection anyway. I find it crazyΒ that Australia has multiple Lululemon stores but Europe doesn’t have one?! They need to change that, stat.

I also checked out what is apparently the UK version of Lulu, Sweaty Betty. Meh. The store was huge, but there was only one thing I liked. The prices are on par with Lululemon, but the quality is nowhere near the same.

Have you ever been to a bodybuilder-only gym before? What do you think about my possible new job?


Posted by on March 19, 2012 in Life


Tags: , , ,

19 responses to “Time to get serious

  1. julie

    March 19, 2012 at 5:28 pm

    omg omgggg get a job at lulu anddd at the gym hahaha sorry i had to.

  2. sdorsay (itrainthereforeieat)

    March 19, 2012 at 6:42 pm

    Will and I are the same way about walking everywhere, we tend to walk around all day long whenever we go somewhere new! It’s great that you guys have been able to take this time to just kind of enjoy the new city without jumping right into new jobs. I’ve never been to a strict body-building gym before, but honestly that place you described sounds intimidating, even for someone like me who feels totally at home in the weight room! And I can’t believe there’s one that doesn’t let women in, period. How will the gender stereotype ever change?!

    • Tara

      March 20, 2012 at 6:00 pm

      I wasn’t happy to hear it, but I can *kind of* understand why they don’t let women in. But it’s still wrong. If the best gyms out there won’t even let women in, then how on earth are women supposed to feel at home in the weight room?!

  3. rob

    March 19, 2012 at 10:17 pm

    Ok first off u are insane to walk 75hrs to go to a grocery store and buy nothing. 2nd, Yorkies is AMAZING. The true def of a bodybuilding gym. I’m positive most every woman wouldn’t workout there. Its uber raw. Now 3rd and lastly……….. NO LULU!!! U honestly are crazy about that stuff and u should be in rehab!!! I luv u booboo and u will rock tmrw’s interview as well.

    • Tara

      March 20, 2012 at 6:01 pm

      Ha, well most women aren’t me πŸ˜‰ You are the one who introduced me to Lulu so it’s your own fault!

  4. Megan @ Weddings and Workouts

    March 19, 2012 at 11:48 pm

    Good luck for your interview!!!

    Okay that gym sounds insane – I definitely wouldn’t have the confidence to work out there!! πŸ™‚

    So jealous of Whole Foods!

    • Tara

      March 20, 2012 at 6:03 pm

      Thanks, Megan!

  5. Meg

    March 20, 2012 at 1:37 am

    I think your possible new job is amazing and gives you HUGE potential πŸ˜€ So exciting. I went into more detail in the email, though πŸ˜‰

    That gym really does sound freaky. I am pretty sure I would have pooped myself!

    • Tara

      March 20, 2012 at 6:05 pm

      Haha, I don’t know if you would want to work out there πŸ˜‰

  6. Sandra

    March 20, 2012 at 2:30 am

    I’m pretty hard core with my weight training, and I really think I would have scurried away with my tail between my legs at the sight of that gym. Good for you for going for it. As for the job, hold out, and see what the second interview brings. Can’t wait for the details!
    PS: I came in second place in the competition in Bikini Masters. I believe I might be competing in World Qualifiers end of April, still need to confirm with my coach. So my diet continues.
    Can’t wait to hear when you begin with your training again, either training yourself or others! You have so much to look forward to!

    • Tara

      March 20, 2012 at 6:06 pm

      That’s awesome, Sandra! Great job! But sorry to hear about the ongoing diet…

  7. Dannie

    March 20, 2012 at 10:23 am

    I share your LULU love!!! We need a proper Lululemon shop here in the UK, and pronto! Sweaty Betty is crap (and way overpriced).

    Agree with the previous comments – I would never, ever set foot in a gym like that. Too scary!

    Good luck with your job search. I’m also doing a course to become a PT, but it’s gonna take me ages as I’m working full-time. Can’t wait to read more about your career progress πŸ™‚

    • Tara

      March 20, 2012 at 6:07 pm

      There was a rumour that Lulu was coming to the UK two years ago, but so far no store. Not happy! I worked full-time while I did my certification and it took me four months, but most of the time was spent waiting for my tests. The study itself only took about six weeks, of evenings and weekends only. If you have any questions about PT courses let me know!

  8. Sable@SquatLikeALady

    March 20, 2012 at 12:22 pm

    Whattttt – is it legal to operate a mens-only gym?! Guess it must be but geez.

    Honestly I’ve found that most pros and experienced BBers actually love when females lift. The pros who lift at our gym are always super nice to me and have even made (positive!!) comments about my strength to Max.

    Sounds like you two are EXACTLY where you need to be! πŸ˜€ Good luck on the interview!

    • Tara

      March 20, 2012 at 6:13 pm

      Ha, I knew you’d have something to say about that! I know exactly what you mean, but apparently these guys just want a testosterone-fuelled lifting environment.

  9. Jen Comas Keck

    March 20, 2012 at 6:53 pm

    WHAT?!? <—- high pitched squeaky shriek

    Don't let women in?! I actually gasped outloud when I read that. They clearly don't know the women we do… deadlifting 315 and squatting in the mid 200s. Or wait. Maybe they DO and don't want to be embarrassed πŸ˜‰

    Hope you find a great job and get settled in asap! All hail Lululemon!

    • Tara

      March 21, 2012 at 7:15 pm

      I agree! It’s so surprising that a gym of that standard, that has famous bodybuilders attending as well, wouldn’t let women in. I find it hard to believe that a gym would say no to Erin Stern, Nicole Wilkins or YOU for that matter! I seriously think they don’t want to be embarrassed πŸ˜‰

  10. Liz N

    March 21, 2012 at 5:01 am

    Hi Tara , I’ve been trying to comment on your blog, but can only get in via my old WordPress account.

    I actually prefer commercial gyms to bodybuilder ones – there’s never any wait for a squat rack or chin up bar!

    • Tara

      March 21, 2012 at 7:17 pm

      That’s weird, Liz – I haven’t had anyone else having problems, I don’t think?

      I actually disagree with you! At commercial gyms there are way more people, and they are all hogging the one or two squat racks available. There was only two other guys in the BB gym when we went to check it out. Those kind of gyms don’t get as busy as commercial gyms, and the times people work out seem to be more sporadic.


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