Hi. I’m Grace, Founder of Diva Train.
As an obnoxiously self-loving enthusiast that believes she was put on this earth to make other people smile, laugh and become the absolute best versions of themselves, my life’s journey is why I feel so passionate about what I do. I am a Life Coach, Personal Trainer and Entrepreneur. Really those are just labels (and qualifications) but what I actually am, is just a girl that’s lived a life, had an idea and is crazy enough to believe she can make a difference in this world.
Diva Train is my wellness brand empowering women into feeling fit, strong and healthy – in mind, body and soul. It all started as an exercise class at one of London’s top Universities, The London School of Economics. I was hired as a Class Instructor to teach what at the time was called ‘Women’s Only Conditioning’. I had free reign to construct and teach these classes in any way I chose. Starting out with only a few attendees, these classes grew very popular very quickly.
More classes were added to the timetable and the community began to grow. It was at this point I realized I was doing something right. I had created a space in which young women of all athletic ability could come and de-stress, sweat and release their inner Diva before returning to their books. This is when I decided to re-brand the classes as Diva Train, make them mine, and grow the movement even bigger! Diva Train tripled female participation in exercise during its time at LSE.
Diva Training combines a total body-conditioning workout with feel good music and leaves you with an overwhelming sense of achievement. It uses a variety of body weight exercises, HIIT (high intensity interval training) and welcomes women of all ages and athletic ability. It gives you the feel good element of a dance class but with well-constructed, challenging yet achievable workouts.
Just a few weeks after initially launching Diva Train, I suffered a back injury that caused me to be unemployed for nearly a year. I went to see various different specialists, tried all sorts of treatments and was finally told by an Osteopath that my mental state that was stopping me from healing. As you can imagine, experiencing the physical pain of my injury every day and being told that you were basically doing it to yourself, messed with my head even more.
However… it was the best thing that has ever happened to me and a blessing in disguise. Until I figured out what was going on in my mind, the only hour of the day I didn’t feel like an anxious mess was when I was exercising. So when this was taken away from me due to my injury, it’s no wonder my body couldn’t heal. If I wasn’t the strong, athletic girl who was I? Talk about having an identity crisis. I spent 8 months partying and abusing my body because I was so unhappy and had lost all sense of direction. At the time I felt ‘Why me?’ but now I’m like, thank GOD it was me. As Sir Tony Robbins says – “Life doesn’t happy to you, it happens for you.”
What this lead me to was, ‘the art of living mindfully’. Now I don’t just mean meditation (though that was a game changer for me) I mean focusing on here and now and that is all. Not yesterday, not last week, not tomorrow and not next year. The only moment we ever have is right now and once I realized that, my mind began to calm, thus so did my body. The correlation between mind and body is truly unbelievable. I thought it was the physical activity that was changing my life but actually it wasn’t until that got taken away from me that my world really began to change.
I had accepted that I wouldn’t be able to physically use my body the way I used to so I looked to other ways I could still help people. Throughout my many months of unemployment, I did a foundation in Psychotherapy and Counseling. This was basically 3 months of group therapy. Every. Single. Day. It was BRUTAL but unbelievable for my own self-development and what it made me realize is that:
1) I didn’t think I was quite right for that career path
2) I have been in and out of therapy since I was 16, I was kind of done with delving into the past and finding out why I was the way I was
3) My heart still lied with Diva Train, my brand and
4) it lead me to Life Coaching which works with here, now and moving forward. Seeeeeee! My life was happening for me!
My undeniable passion and desire to now help people find their inner peace and guide them to THEIR form of happiness, is now at the forefront of what I do.
I was an anxious wreck for nearly 10 years and I have now found ways of keeping myself calm. There are still days where it all falls apart, but hey, that is life and that is why this is a continual journey and work in progress – I never stop learning! My anxiety was so severe I had moments I thought I was going mentally insane. I felt like my body didn’t belong to me and the mirror was my worst enemy. I had times of sitting on my bedroom floor and absolutely balling my eyes out because I hated myself and my body so much. I abused myself with drink and drugs and lived a completely self-destructive life.
I am sharing this because to understand my journey is to understand the drive behind Diva Train, and as to why I now have a burning desire to give back.
My name is Grace and through some challenging times I have gone from a crippling anxious self-deprecator to an obnoxiously self-loving enthusiast and absolutely EVERYTHING in between. I am now on a mission to help as many women as I possibly can, live mindfully and live their absolute BEST lives.