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This week as we are in the month of love and close to Valentines day, I wanted to remind you self-care is not selfish and that we need to take time to look after ourselves and not just others. 
 
Each day this week I will be talking to a different health and well-being expert to find out more about what they do, recommendations on how to look after health and wellness and what they like to do to take timeout. 
 
Today I am speaking with Kirsten O'Neil from Move Mentality who is a personal trainer & offers Sports Massage. Kirsten is passionate in helping peoples health and well-being by keeping them moving. 
 
How did you become a Personal Trainer/ Sports Massage Therapist? 
I initially went down the personal training route as I'd always enjoyed being active (cliché answer) and grew up with a dad who was into strength training as well as watching a lot of wrestling so I'd had an interest in the strength side of fitness - I was never really into sports so joined a gym at 14 and thats been my happy place since! 
 
After completing my personal training studies, I worked in a gym and quickly realised that I had zero interest in helping people get "ripped" or achieve their "bikini body". I wanted to get away from the aesthetic side of fitness and learn more about rehab and work with a more functional approach. Sports massage fitted in nicely with that - plus, I love massage so why not learn it myself?! 
 
How have you been able to help people during this time? 
During the lockdowns, I've been helping clients with their exercise programmes through zoom as well as distanced outdoor sessions. I've also done some online consultations and rehab which has worked really well and still included plenty of laughs but I definitely miss seeing people face to face! 
 
What is the one thing you would recommend to people with regards to health and wellness during this time? 
So I don't have just 1 thing but my go to motto for any time is: 
Eat more veggies, drink more water and move more. 
Its easily achievable, barely costs anything (veggies are not expensive!) and can be done at anytime. NO EXCUSES. 
 
Why is movement Important? 
Movement is important for many things: reduces aches & pains, boosts mood & increases productivity, improves cardiovascular fitness and strengthens bones, improves posture, increases circulation, helps to enhance balance & coordination and more! 
 
What do you not recommend doing during this time? 
During this time, I would recommend avoiding going from one extreme to another, I.e. if you don't regularly go for steady walks and suddenly go into HIIT sessions 5x a week, chances are you'll end up injured and having a negative experience with exercise. That advice goes for any time, not just during the lockdown. Be patient, build things up effectively and steadily - learn to love the process! 
Oh and try to avoid excuses 🤷‍♀️ 
 
As this month is about the importance of selfcare tell us what you like to do to take sometime for you? 
My self care (funnily enough) involves movement. I like being outside so anything outdoors is good for my body and mind! I do actually sit still too... I read to give my brain chance to switch off from everything else and give my body the space to rest & recover. 
 
Tell us an interesting fact about you? 
"What's an interesting fact about you?" Do you want to know that I'm a witch or that I hate mushrooms? 
 
Thank you Kirsten for sharing your story, really love your motto ''eat more vegatables, drink more water and move more'' something that's really helped me physically and mentally during each lockdown. 
 
 
 
 
 
If you would like to find out more about Kirsten and Move Mentality visit her Facebook Page @movementality. 
 
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