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Posted on 7 June 2018 by Amy King, Founder, CORE+

We get it, working out for the first time in a long time (or maybe ever!) can be scary. What if you wear the wrong thing? Or you don’t know how to do one of the moves, like the regulars? Or you just can’t touch your toes, no matter how hard you try?

The CORE+ way of life is about eliminating these pretences, and in fact, intimidation of any kind. It has been designed to make you feel confident and excited from the minute you book a class, to arriving at the studio, to challenging yourself during a new position.

Frances (aka @notanotherfitnessblogger) is one of our favourite instructors that lives and breathes this motto! She started with CORE+ in February 2016, after falling in love with teaching, quitting her corporate job and pursuing a career in fitness by becoming a PT, Pilates instructor and yoga teacher.

We asked Fran to give her 10 best pieces of advice for CORE+ beginners – whether it’s been a while since your last downward dog, or you still don’t know what one is.

Fran’s top 10 tips:

  1. First and foremost, remember: everybody has had to do this for the first time… So don’t feel self-conscious.
  2. Don’t put too much pressure on yourself. Don’t feel like you have to keep up with the person who is front and center, using the 5kg dumbbells and taking all the advanced postures. Try putting your mat towards the back of the room so you don’t feel like everyone is watching you (which they are not, by the way!) This way you can follow everyone else’s lead, pause to observe or rest, or take a few extra drink breaks.    
  3. Always come prepared – bring a BIG towel and a water bottle. If you forget, don’t stress. You can hire towels and purchase snacks and drinks from reception.
  4. Don’t worry about your outfit. Most people at CORE+ choose to work out in leggings or shorts with a tee, tank or sports bra (guys usually opt for shorts and a tee). As it is warm, you might feel uncomfortable in too many layers, heavy fabrics or long sleeves.
  5. Have a goal. What is it you want to get out of the class? Don’t focus on weight loss. Here are a few other ideas: building a better relationship with yourself, committing to regular exercise routine, or trying reformer or yoga for the first time.
  6. Introduce yourself. Don’t be shy; say hi to the teacher, learn their name and thank them after class. Chat with the person on the mat next to you or while you’re waiting in reception. You never know who you might meet!
  7. If you have an injury, it’s your responsibility to let the teacher know. They will be able to keep a close eye on you and offer modifications and support. Start gently and refer back to point #2! Of course, if you are injured, you should always check with your doctor or healthcare professional before you exercise.
  8. Move your body in a way that feels good for you. If a certain class is not for you, try something else! There is a range of reformer and mat Pilates as well as a few different types of yoga. Give them all a go and see what you like best.
  9. Don’t be disheartened by where you’re at when you start – CORE+ is for everyone at every fitness level. Repeat after me: I will adjust to the heat. My strength will grow. My fitness will increase. I will become more flexible.
  10. Last but not least, do it all with a smile. Get lost in the movement, the music, the heat, the energy… laughter is a great ab exercise, after all. And have fun!

Want to work out with Fran? Book a class at Malvern East or Port Melbourne here and feel the burn.