“There is no competition here, there are no winners or losers” – Kayla Itsines
Kayla Itsines, an international fitness Instagram sensation with 3.5 million followers and counting, is a must-follow for any Fitstagrammer. She shares progress shots of women who follow her ‘Bikini Body Guide’ (BBG) alongside workout tips and motivation in the form of photos of her own enviable abs. Her most impressive feat, however, isn’t the thousands of burpees she can crunch out, but the online community that she has cultivated of women looking to get stronger and healthier as well as supporting and commenting on each other’s workout progress through the hashtags #thekaylamovement, #bbggirls, #sweatwithkayla, and #bbgcommunity.
We emailed her recently, and she replied sharing a little bit about herself and her famed Bikini Body Guide, as well as tips and words of encouragement.
So who is Kayla Itsines and what has she been up to?
I’m a 24 year-old personal trainer from Adelaide, Australia and I’ve just completed my first ever World Bootcamp Tour where I was privileged enough to meet and train with nearly 10,000 girls in the UK, USA and Europe. I absolutely love that I can train, educate and give healthy lifestyle advice to girls all around the world through my Bikini Body Training Guide, Healthy Eating Lifestyle Plan, social media accounts and my website, kaylaitsines.com.
Do you remember how it all started? What inspired you to pursue a career in fitness?
During school, I always had a passion for playing sports and helping people that led me to study Personal Training at the Australian Institute of Fitness. It all started when I began to upload the amazing transformation pictures of the clients I was training at the Personal Training studio to my Instagram page. Their motivating and relatable transformations drew the attention from girls all around the world who were curious as to how my clients and I were training and achieving these results. It was my clients who inspired me to continue to grow and learn as they were finally feeling the confidence they deserved, and nothing made me happier than seeing them being able to work towards and achieve their health and fitness goals.
Why do you think your BBG exploded? How is your BBG different compared to other exercise regimes and fitness guides?
I think my program has received so much positive feedback because the results are from real women who have all achieved REAL results. It’s not about a quick fix, it’s not a fad, and it’s a healthy, maintainable lifestyle change that is adaptable and REALISTIC for women of all ages, body shapes and fitness levels. My 28-minute high intensity, plyometric, resistance training sessions are designed to help girls achieve the results they have been seeking for so long – toned thighs, flatter stomachs and strong, slim arms, without having to spend hours a day in the gym. The biggest difference of my guides is the end goal that women worldwide are achieving; rather than being a weight-loss or a muscle-gaining program, it is simply a plan for women to develop a routine and discipline themselves to keep active and healthy in order to feel the confidence they deserve.
What do you think are the most common mistakes girls make when it comes to fitness and diet?
Girls often have the all or nothing attitude, where they fluctuate between taking their health seriously by eating extremely healthily and exercising every day, to doing absolutely nothing at all. Going through these constant changes is only going to have a negative effect on your body. This yo-yo type of attitude is frequently the main cause for rapid weight gain or weight loss, bloating, disappointment and emotional eating. My tip is to not overdo it, take things slow and make small, realistic changes; soon your body will develop a habit it can maintain long-term!
What motivates you?
My amazing BBG Girls are my motivation. Their inspirational, amazing, transformations as well as uplifting and encouraging energy keep me motivated to continue to provide health and fitness education, advice and support to women all across the world daily. These incredible women are SO dedicated and have put in so much hard work to feel fit, strong and confident and that gives me motivation to keep striving to be the best version of myself every single day. I feel blessed to be a part of such a positive community of women.
Did you ever think you would come this far? What do you think is the key to your success?
I had no idea that I would be in the position that I am in today and I feel honored and blessed that I have been given the opportunity to educate and help women from all over the world on their healthy lifestyle journey. I believe that it’s not my success that is being celebrated through my Instagram but the inspirational success of the amazing BBG girls. These girls have worked so hard and dedicated themselves to get the results they desired.
What is the most exciting thing that has happened to you since you become a worldwide fitness icon?
The last 12 months have included so many exciting moments; on both my Australian Tour and World Tour, but I’ll never forget walking on stage at Basketball City in New York City in front of 4,000 girls. I was taken aback that so many girls had travelled from all over New York and the USA to come and train with me and start their weekend actively! It was a very overwhelming experience and I count myself extremely lucky to be fortunate enough to be able to not only train, but also meet all these beautiful girls in person.
“Falling down is a part of life. Getting back up is living” – Kayla Itsines
Closer to home, our founder, Sherlyn Tan, also found inspiration and motivation through Kayla and her Bikini Body Guide. What started as a means to overcome her battle with depression has turned into a veritable change in lifestyle, driving her to pursue bigger dreams. Read all about it next week!