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  • Adell Bridges / Q&A

    1st March 2017

    1st March 2017

    By Shivraj Bassi

    Adell completed her Yoga Teacher Training in India at the Trimurti School of Yoga. Despite a gymnastics background, she strongly believes that everyone regardless of age, body shape, physical ability, or lifestyle, can benefit from yoga and she's passionate about sharing her love of it with everyone! Currently teaching in Cardiff, we sat down with Adell and managed to get some real pearls of wisdom.

    “I have always been active since I was a very small child, from playing in mud puddles in Mississippi to competing as a gymnast, and then taking part in various sports and activities until I finally found yoga. It’s always just been a natural part of the way I live my life, but I started to become more aware of the importance of fitness and nutrition around my early twenties. The desire to understand what makes a human body healthy and efficient has not only made me able to enjoy life more (because we of course enjoy every moment more when we are free of ailments) but it has also led me onto the path of travelling yoga teacher that I’m on now. My philosophy towards health and fitness is not to force it, or make it some strict regimen, but rather just enjoy little things every day that are good for the body and mind. You only get one body, and it’s the vessel that carries us through life, so why wouldn’t you want to treat it like a rare and precious object?” 

    Favourite Innermost products, and why?

    The Health Protein. I'm vegan so this superfood protein blend would be the best option for me. The Detox Booster. Another vegan product. This one contains 10 health-focused ingredients.        

    What's your hustle?

    I teach yoga. Which means I get people moving around on a mat, but more importantly looking inwards and understanding themselves better.  Their bodies, their breath, and ultimately their true selves.

    What does #liveinnermost mean to you?

    When we start to pay attention to ourselves, beyond what social norms say about who or what we are or should be, but examine our bodies and minds without judgement or expectation, we start to learn how our thoughts aren’t reflections of who we really are.  We can begin to understand what is truth and what is just a distraction. We learn to listen to our bodies and turn unfounded fear into motivation to reach goals. When we examine something deeply, we understand it better.  When we understand something, we can change it.

    What was your last workout?

    A 10 minute handstand, done with a stopwatch, so it’s not 10 straight minutes! When I fall out of it, I stop the stopwatch, and start it again until I get to 10 minutes of being on my hands.  It usually takes about 20 minutes to complete! Then 10 tick-tocks - going from urdvha mukha svanasana (downward facing dog) to urdvha dhanurasana (wheel) and back again. Then 10 one armed handstands on each hand - for me this involves falling every time as I have not mastered the one armed handstand! Finally 10 ekapadabakasana on each side

    Best travelling tip you've picked up?

    Do NOT wait for the perfect time.  Don’t wait for “when I have enough money” or “when my friends will join me” or “when I’m not so busy”.  If you want to travel, do it. The best thing about travelling is how it takes you out of the familiar, out of your comfort zone. If you don’t have much cash, great - it means you’ll be forced to speak to people, make contacts, find work. If you don’t know the area, it means you’ll have to explore on your own and figure it out. Travel is about experience, not staying in nice hotels and taking nice photos. So don’t wait for it to be a perfect time.

    Best advice you've ever received?

    My dad always used to say to me and my sisters: “This too shall pass” when we were complaining about things not going our way. I learned over time that he was right - nothing lasts. Nothing is permanent.  Sometimes things are awesome, sometimes life sucks. Either way, it’s not going to stay that way. So wherever you are, remember circumstances will change. Enjoy the good times, and learn from the bad times.

    A book currently on your bedside table?

    I’m nomadic and live out of a suitcase so I don’t carry books, but my Kindle currently opens up to Diet, Shatkarmas and Amaroli - Yogic Nutrition and Cleansing for Health and Spirit by Yogani.

    What is body confidence to you?

    Health. When I feel healthy, I feel confident. Being active and eating nutritious foods, having good digestion, being hydrated, and feeling stress-free. When I’m able to keep all this up, I feel confident in my body because I know it’s the best it can be.

    Message to the world?

    Get rid of fear your life. Fear is the opposite of love and love is the greatest force in the universe. So many of the world’s problems are caused by fear - fearing the unknown, fearing change, fearing things that are different. If we embrace these things with love instead of fear, we grow a culture of compassion, tolerance, and understanding. We can elect good leaders, support businesses that are more about positive change than the bottom line, we can help each other instead of competing. And then the world will be little better.

    Number one reason for taking care of your body? 

    You only get one! Why wouldn’t you?

    Get another dose of Adell on her on Instagram (@adellbridges).

    Other Insights

    Being Thankful and Expressing Gratitude with Maddie Rose
    Growth And Goals With Innermost Insider Amy Costello
    Hi Amy! Can you tell us a bit about how you got into your fitness journey? Hey my Innermost faves! I was always involved in sports at school and loved running, but it was on my travels to Sydney, Australia, that my passion for fitness as a real, positive, daily part of my life, kicked off. I love the lifestyle in Sydney. Everyone is really invested in their health and fitness and that fuelled me to get my Personal Training qualification and start going to the gym (I’d never stepped foot in a gym before this!), where I learnt absolutely everything I could about functional and resistance training. I read books, I watched technique videos, and I put all of it into practice in my own training and programming. But this was just the beginning! How did your passion for fitness begin to translate into your full-time job? Whilst living in Australia, I met Mike, who is now my fiancé (woo) and my business partner in the fitness empire we are building!  It actually started when my Aussie visa was due to expire, and we were game-planning ways that we could stay together and avoid doing the long-distance relationship thing. At the time I was coaching at an F45 studio in Sydney, and after a bit of research, we realised there was only one F45 studio in London - so Mike got thinking - why don’t we see if we can open one!  It then all happened very fast - within a couple of months we had signed with F45 to open our own studio, had packed our bags and were moving to London. 4.5 years later and we've built an incredible member base and community at F45 Tottenham Court Road, and also launched our own fitness retreat company, Salt Escapes, where we run fitness holidays at various beautiful destinations around the world!  View this post on Instagram A post shared by AMY COSTELLO (@amykcostello) What was more challenging, opening your F45 Studio or launching Salt Escapes?  I would have to say F45. It was our first business so there was a lot to learn and a lot to prove. We made a heap of mistakes and knew next to nothing about business, but we worked our little asses off to build our gym into what it is today.  When we launched Salt Escapes, we already had an engaged, interested customer base in our clients at the gym, so it wasn’t SO terrifying to launch! Also, with it being our own brand and company, there were no limitations like with F45. Instead we were free to branch out, be adventurous and see what works. This is how we like to do things! How has your business evolved through lockdown?  Wow, it’s been a testing year. We lost a lot of members throughout the past year. Being located in central London was a huge advantage for the first few years of business, but when lockdown hit, everyone just disappeared!  It’s almost as though we’ve had the chance to start from scratch, which has meant we’ve had the opportunity to re-evaluate everything from our finances, processes and sales strategies, to our membership offering and client-relationships.  From that perspective (and ONLY that perspective), it’s been great for us. We’ve been given the opportunity to build our business back stronger. Nine months of closure allows you to do a lot of reflecting.  How have you personally evolved throughout the last year?  Well I’ve managed to avoid packing it all in and moving to a tiny island in the middle of nowhere - does that count?!  Haha, no but seriously - I guess for me, it’s been the year I’ve actually understood what it means to look after your mental health. It’s been a really challenging year to own a gym and a travel business, and my sleep and mental health has taken a battering.  Realising the importance of “self-care” (sounds cheesy, but it’s a whole vibe) has been a game-changer. For me, it’s walks in the park, my daily 10 minute Calm, switching my phone to Do Not Disturb, and prioritising learning (books, podcasts, journals).  View this post on Instagram A post shared by AMY COSTELLO (@amykcostello) What does the word ‘growth’ mean to you? Aside from #gains? Ha.  In the past couple of years - Mike and I have started saying to each other, and our team, “we like solutions, not problems”. Look, in work, training, life, there are always going to be problems, difficult people, and tough days. I used to obsess over the problems to the point they’d keep me awake at night. Now the minute a problem arises, I start thinking about the solution. Because there’s always a solution if you look hard enough, so what’s the point in stressing over things you have the power to do something about?  For me - that’s growth. Pushing forward, maintaining a solution-driven outlook whatever is thrown at you, and working out how to move past problems - adapt, reflect, learn.  How do you push past plateaus? I think the most important thing is that you recognise you’ve hit a plateau. Whatever it is you’re trying to change, be it weight loss, muscle gain, fitness levels, or whether it applies to work and productivity. I love to track everything. I write down all of my workouts, including the reps I’ve done, the weights I’m lifting, and even notes about how I felt during and after the session. This helps me clearly see when I’ve plateaued in my training, and encourages me to then reassess my goals and make a plan to push forward.  There are so many ways to mix things up. If it’s a training plateau, maybe try hitting the gym with a friend, trying out a different class, or getting a PT for a few sessions to give you some fresh ideas and perspective.  What aspect of your life do you struggle to develop most?  For me, it’s definitely finding balance. Running two businesses doesn’t usually allow for much down time, especially as I work with my fiancé, which means that we’re always either at work or talking about work. I really love working for myself, but it’s definitely had a big effect on my social life. Any 'time off' I do get, I usually feel like I just want to chill out alone. I definitely find it a struggle to maintain or build more meaningful friendships these days. Don’t get me wrong - I have a whole heap of wonderful people in my life - I’m just not that hot on messaging back or letting my hair down and going for a night out these days.  View this post on Instagram A post shared by AMY COSTELLO (@amykcostello) Do you set yourself goals? How do you make sure you achieve them? All the time! But I read a great book recently, Atomic Habits by James Clear, which taught me about the importance of goals that are specific and actionable. He says goals are good for setting direction, but systems are best for making progress. I can resonate with this from my own experiences, and from watching so many clients set themselves goals, and then feel like they’ve ‘failed' because they’ve been so focused on the end goal, as opposed to making small, actionable, daily changes to get them there.  So for example, a small goal of mine at the moment is to drink more water as I’m generally pretty bad at this. I’m making this a habit by setting out my bottle of water before I go to bed each night, so I see it first thing in the morning. I tell myself I can’t leave the house for work until I’ve had 600ml water. I also use a water tracker app, which sends me little push notifications throughout the day. System in place, and so far it’s working and I feel great!  What is your greatest life accomplishment? It’s got to be building Salt Escapes. Mike and I have been on the same page since we met. We wanted to create a life where we could work for ourselves and travel the world. We’ve achieved that with Salt Escapes, and there’s a lot more to come!  On top of that, I don’t think there’s any greater feeling than being in a beautiful part of the world, with a bunch of amazing people who have just had the week of their lives, and have been inspired beyond measure, and realising that you made that happen.  What’s one goal you’re going for now? Work goal: Building my businesses back up in a post-pandemic world. We’ve got 9 Salt Escapes trips on the schedule for this year and I’m going to do everything in my power to make them all happen. I just need Boris to play ball!  Personal goal: Mike and I want to buy our first house by the beach. It’s definitely a longer term goal, but everything in our foreseeable future is now driven by this end goal. We’re focused on a future of beach walks, BBQs and puppies!  What are the benefits of having a growth mindset? The opportunities! Personally, I didn’t do too well at school. I didn’t get the point of learning for the sake of learning. But I’m pretty proud of the fact that through hard work, applied knowledge and a lot of determination as an adult. I now own two businesses, work for myself and get to travel the world.  Natural talent or academic intelligence is one thing, but a growth mindset allows you to experience success, build resilience and overcome challenges, all through a simple shift in your perspective.  To keep up with Amy, follow her on Instagram and on Salt Escapes.  Read more