Expert Corner: Beth Bokser on Girl Power
A Personal Trainer and Boxing Instructor, Beth is a mainstay of the fitness team at Mayfair West. Anyone who meets her will immediately feel her passion for fitness and health – one of the reasons she’s so successful at helping her clients achieve their goals. Beth’s journey to discovering fitness as a passion involved finding courage through surgery. Read on to see how she fought to get healthy and now works with young women to inspire strength and physical literacy.
Beth believes her philosophy is simple, “the root word of impossible is possible and I believe that wholeheartedly – both in my personal life and with each of my clients.”
“In 2012, my emotional and physical strength was put to the test when I underwent an emergency Spinal Fusion to repair my L4-L5 vertebrae which were literally falling off my spine and destroying nerve roots leading into my legs. At the time, I had two small children and realized my only choice was to deal with it.”
Facing a serious surgery and recovery, Beth made the decision to adopt a positive outlook on the situation, “Instead of looking at it as a negative, (woe is me – why me?) I looked at is as a positive thing. I was thankful that the doctors found the problem, and even more thankful that they were able to fix it. There was no time for self-pity.”
It was a long and difficult process, but Beth believed that by maintaining a positive attitude she could stay focused through surgery and recovery.
“Months later, when doctors finally gave me the go ahead, I started to exercise with a personal trainer, who further encouraged me and helped me realize my potential and love for fitness. I learned so much about both my mental and physical strength and it led me down a pathway that I never expected at the time. Not only did I get stronger physically, but my life changed – my mindset, priorities, education and career all shifted. I hit the gym, the books, and the bag (boxing bag). I started to work toward building my credentials so that I could help other people recover and develop their own strength. I became a Certified Personal Trainer, Certified Kickboxing Instructor, Certified Schwinn Cycling Instructor, in addition to a list of certifications for fitness programs, equipment and health & safety.”
“My passion for fitness and my desire to learn and grow has had a direct impact on my success as a personal trainer. I have seen so many of my clients come so far with their fitness journeys and am so grateful that I can help them reach their goals.” Like her own fitness journey, Beth tells her clients that change can take time, but they must believe in themselves and in the process to see success. One of her most recent success stories is a client who lost over 100lbs and completely changed his life.
You can tell for Beth this isn’t just a job, she radiates positivity as she talks about her clients, “Their success is ultimately my success too. I’m willing to go that extra mile to help them. I share workouts, health tips, recipes, text them words of encouragement, high five them and set realistic, achievable and attainable goals. I let them know that we are in this together.”
Inspiring Young Women
At Mayfair West, Beth worked to create a boxing class just for teens – Girl Power. A mother of two teenage girls, she wanted to create a place that young women could go to build strength, confidence and friendships. “I created Girl Power, a boxing and boot camp class for teen girls, to help teach them not only about fitness, and boxing, but also about self-worth and self-acceptance. For me, this isn’t just a fitness class, it’s a labor of love and I care about the young women who come every week like they are my own.”
Beth structures each class to include a boxing and boot camp portion.
A sample warm-up includes:
- 3 laps, followed by 2 rounds of the following: jumping jacks, high knees, mountain climbers and pushups (20 seconds on, 10 seconds off).
- She then has 5-6 different stations where the girls can work in groups of 2—4.
- Exercises could include:
- Toe taps, squat + toss of a medicine ball
- bicycles, mountain climbers
- jump squats with rows (using resistance bands)
- travelling pushups
She changes the workouts weekly to keep participants engaged and ensure that classes have a fresh and fun feel. Beth also structures the program to allow time for partner and small group work, “allowing the girls to stay focused and motivate each other – it’s a win/win!” For Beth, “the most rewarding part of my job is to see positive change in my clients and witness them reach and surpass what they once thought was impossible.”
For more information on Beth, contact Mayfair West’s Fitness Manager Kerry Lloyd at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can catch her Girl Power class every Thursday from 5:00pm – 6:00pm.