How many of us mums used to exercise before having kids only to stop when we got pregnant and never looked back again? There is undoubtedly a high number of us nodding our heads in agreement.
A number of thoughts come to mind: When can we fit exercise in? Who is going to keep the kids whilst we exercise? Valid points, yet we tend to forget that, as important as it is to take care of our children, our children also need US to take care of ourselves.
Studies show that regular exercise reduces the risk of conditions such as dementia and osteoporosis, improves our sex life, helps digestion, and reduces stress, depression and anxiety. According to the American Association for Cancer Research, regular exercise even reduces the risk of breast cancer.
As I enter the gym, I do not get that overwhelming ‘OMG everyone is looking at me’ feeling, which is great.
Ben Diacono, founder of Studio Fifteen and Zsofia Gaspar, personal trainer at Studiofifteen.
As soon as I enter the gym, I immediately feel at home as it has a very cosy, ‘personal’ feel, with everyone doing their own thing. In fact, I do not get that overwhelming ‘OMG everyone is looking at me’ feeling, which is great.
When I start chatting with Ben, it is clear to me that fitness is his passion and that he genuinely loves helping people to get fit and take care of themselves physically.
How did this all start?
“I have been exercising all my life, playing football with Luxol for the better part of 20 years, following which, I decided to expand my knowledge and expertise by studying to be a personal trainer in London, where I lived for 7 months. Throughout the years I continued to invest in training courses where I specialised, amongst other specialisations, in pre-and post-natal exercise.”
Ben continues to tell me how in Malta, once women become pregnant there is a tendency to stop exercising, but this should not be necessarily the case according to Ben.
“women who exercise during pregnancy tend to have easier and less painful births.”
Why should women continue to exercise during pregnancy?
“As long as they have consulted their physician and are exercising with a qualified trainer, exercise can have several benefits for pregnant women.” Ben tells me how exercise helps lift one’s spirits and during pregnancy this is especially meaningful due to the hormonal and physical changes that are occurring.
“Pregnancy often leaves women feeling fatigued and weak, however exercise can help them feel more energetic. It also helps preparing one’s body for childbirth and women who exercise during pregnancy tend to have easier and less painful births.”
According to the American Pregnancy Association, exercise has been proven to help alleviate many of the common problems that come with pregnancy. It helps improve circulation, avoid constipation, haemorrhoids, varicose veins, leg cramps and swelling. Other benefits include, better sleep, stress reduction and quicker post-labour recovery time, amongst others.
“Our philosophy here is to offer a personal service..we even offer to play our guests’ favourite music when possible.”
Pregnant Zsofia during a personal training session with Ben
What about post-pregnancy? When is it safe for women to start exercising again?
“Well it varies from woman to woman depending on the birth, but in general as from 6-9 weeks post-birth, women can start exercising, as long as they have the go ahead from their doctor and are exercising with a qualified trainer.”
How regular should one exercise to see long-term benefits?
“Any amount of exercise will offer some benefits, however I recommend a minimum of 40 minutes per session 3 times per week.”
What do you offer here at Studio Fifteen?
“Our philosophy here at Studio Fifteen is to offer a personal service. It is a small gym where we all know and help each other; we like to feel like it is an extension of one’s home. We even offer to play our guests’ favourite music when possible.”
Keeping to the personal theme, I ask Ben some questions to help us all get to know him better:
What makes you happy?
“Being with family in summer on the boat scoffing down my dads signature pasta dishes”
“Pasta obviously” (okay we are hungry now)
Drink of choice?
“Gin and Tonic”
Favourite TV series?
“Game of Thrones”
“Gladiator” (why are we not surprised 🙂 )
Best place you travelled to?
What do you admire most in people?
“I really admire people who have drive and work hard to achieve their dreams”
What do you despise most in people?
“Football and anything automotive”
Any hidden talents?
“Does sleeping count?” (We say no – sorry Ben)
The juice and snack bar
Not many people can afford to set up a gym at home, but with its strategic location, ample and free parking facilities and let’s not forget the healthy juice and snack bar, Studio Fifteen seems like the perfect stop for busy mums who want to get in that ‘no frills’ dose of exercise a few times a week.
Ben has very nicely offered a 10% discount for those interested in booking the “10 or 20-Gym-Pass-Package”which can be utilized in a period of 2 or 4 months respectively and a free consultation upon appointment.
The package is created specifically for us mums who have erratic timetables (and unpredictable kids) and cannot commit to specific dates and times. To benefit from the discount simply mention this article when booking your package.
Those interested may call on 27232415 or 79223161 or email on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Studio Fifteen is open 7 days a week as follows:
- Monday – Friday: 6am – 9pm
- Saturdays: 8am – 6pm
- Sundays and Public Holidays: 8am – 12pm
Click here to follow Studio Fifteen’s Facebook page.