Gay Friendly Personal Training in North London
Better Health & Well-being for Gay Men and the LGBT+ Community in London
Gay Friendly Personal Trainer in North London
A Holistic Approach to Health and Well-Being for Gay Men and the LGBT+ Community is Required to Meet the Challenges Faced by this Community.
Speaking from my own experiences as a gay man, I believe that the LGBT+ community, all around the world, has a very unique sets of challenges, barriers and struggles to achieving and maintaining good levels of mental health, physical fitness and well-being.
These stats speak for themselves and I'm personally not too surprised by them; '55% of LGBT men were not active enough to maintain good health, compared to 33% of men in the general population' find out more & 'Lesbian, gay and bisexual older adults are more likely than heterosexuals to suffer chronic health conditions' find out more.
I have looked at studies that suggest that the LGBT+ community is more affected around issues such body image, body dysmorphia and self-esteem. This is not surprising to me, having personally felt high levels of body image pressures, over the years. Exercise to me, used to be mostly centred around building muscles and reducing body fat in order to feel more attractive and validated and in turn accepted. This has contributed to often experiencing bouts of mild to severe depression, low self esteem and poorer mental health overall.
I know that I am not alone. Studies have shown that gay men and the LGBT+ community would typically express lower levels of satisfaction with their body than heterosexual men. I have also seen this whilst working closely with members of the LGBT+ community in my work, through volunteering with charity Switchboard and another such LGBT+ orientated charity.
I am keen to do what I can to support a change in the mind-frame around health and well-being in the LGBT+ community. In a world where stigma, discrimination, homophobia is still very much present, where social media hugely impacts mental health and creates a lessened sense of community, and where the rights of the LGBT+ community are still more or less sketchy in the UK and around the world, I feel it is time for change. The first small step begins with awareness of how we look at ourselves and to support an internal shift, lead by a holistic approach to our health and fitness.
I hope to work with the LGBT+ community to encourage a new dialogue around health and fitness, one where we are kinder to ourselves and not scathing towards our perceived failures and limitations, less judging of how we look and instead more encouraging and loving towards ourselves, respecting that we are on a journey and that we are doing our best at that moment, towards making positive changes.
Rather than focusing purely on how muscled we are or on our body fat percentage alone, we can consider the strides we've made to feel better, and more energetic. Rather than simply penalising ourselves for putting on weight, we can look deeply at the reasons why we may regularly turn to unhealthy, self-sabotage practices in our lives, exploring ways we can better nourish ourselves and our community.
Gay culture, expectations, social media, negative self talk and judgement made me often feel less than adequate, stressed, anxious and unfulfilled. Today I enjoy a healthier relationship with my health, fitness and well-being. I have an exercise schedule with weights, include daily movement through walks and light jogs, eat balanced, intuitive and Plant based to match my values, with daily active and rest habits that energise, nourish and support me.
I now exercise primarily because I feel great for doing so, in my body and mind. I'm also happy with how I look and how my energy levels have much improved. I want to share this experience for my clients to also enjoy their own health and fitness journey, however that best looks for them, fully understanding that everyones health and fitness journey will be different.
Even though its a cliché, my passion is helping others. I did charity work offering fitness classes and health advice to people in the gay and LGBT+ community who could not easily access or afford such a service and also volunteering for LGBT+ Switchboard helpline allowed me further opportunity to support others. I am grateful to be able to support the LGBT+ community in my day to day work as a personal trainer.
The unfortunate truth is that gay people often meet more barriers than the general population to being healthy and active and this is why I aim to encourage LGBT+ people back towards bringing health and fitness practices into their lives without the toxicity of shame based health and fitness aspirations and instead a more mental health and body positive led approach. These changes will spiral to the wider community, where we can lift each other up.
Whether you identify as LGBT+ or not, old or young, unhealthy or fit, fat or thin, amateur or athlete, you can start your journey today. Contact me today to find out more.