“It has literally changed my life:” Shanne’s Fitness Journey at Cinch

by | Feb 25, 2017 | Fit and Forty, Little Exercise and Fitness | 0 comments

_BOB9191Shanne killing it on the left

If you’ve been reading here for a while, you’ll know I keep my butt in shape by exercising three times a week at Cinch, a small group and personal training studio. Training there challenges me – often times it absolutely punishes me – and yet this is the longest I have ever trained somewhere and actually shown up, week in, week out. As hard as many of the workouts are, I love going so much.

That’s why when Nikki decided to run an 8 Week Body Transformation, I wanted to share that with my readers. But I was concerned that only a tiny fraction of you guys would actually live close enough to the suburb of Macleod in Melbourne to consider joining Cinch – so I was absolutely thrilled when all the spots for the 8 week program were filled.   

One of those spots was taken by my friend, Shanne. Her daughter and Ziggy were in class together but at that stage, I really didn’t know Shanne very well at all and I certainly didn’t know she read the blog. So when she walked into Cinch one morning, I was so surprised. And I have never seen anyone begin at Cinch with more determination. She walked in that door with her game face firmly on and proceeded to kick arse. It was so, so inspiring and I wanted to share Shanne’s story with you today.  

Before she began at Cinch, Shanne’s life was one that most mothers can identify with. She had been to gyms on and off over the course of her life but after becoming a mum, she found herself with less and less time to exercise. Caring for her daughter and two stepsons was her priority. Her family was everything. And if she wasn’t being wife, mum or housekeeper, she was at work. The energy and motivation to exercise was all but gone. And though she had always eaten a healthy and balanced diet, she realised that portion sizes coupled with zero exercise was taking a toll on her health and well-being.

Unsure where to begin, Shanne approached the bigger gyms in the area but after taking a couple of classes, she felt disillusioned. Packed like sardines into a gym class with 30 other people, Shanne felt like a number.

“It was so impersonal, you could injure yourself really easily because no-one was watching you and I was looking for something a little bit more personal. I didn’t want to do one on one personal training though, I wanted to be able to do it with other people.”

But though Shanne felt completely lost in the bigger gyms, she came very close to joining one.

“I really didn’t enjoy going but I had to do something. Then I happened to read your blog post and I felt like it was talking to me.”

She immediately emailed Nikki, begging to be considered for one of the spots in the program. Choosing to go to Cinch on her own where she didn’t really know anyone rather than tagging along half-heartedly to a gym class with a well-meaning friend gave Shanne a sense of achievement. She was finally doing something for her. Her husband supported her 100%.

“He said, “Whatever you wanna do, just go do it because I know that at the moment, you are not happy” and it wasn’t even that I wasn’t happy. I just needed to move. Even though I didn’t think I wasn’t happy, I am a much happier person now.”

Admittedly, Shanne was very nervous before the first class but says, “I loved it from the very first session. It’s the style of training. I’d never done anything like it before. I like the interval training because you don’t actually feel like you’re killing yourself to get the result that we’re getting. It’s encouraging to exercise with other people if you do it with the right people and Cinch definitely offers that. Everyone is so encouraging. Because it’s such a small group, you can all bounce off each other with your positivity.”

Bobby - nikki 2


At the time of our interview, Shanne had just completed the 8 week program. The changes were dramatic. Having grown up in a family who weren’t active and where health and fitness were not a priority, Shanne was adamant she did not want to raise her own family in the same way. Two months of training at Cinch had completely changed her mindset. “It has literally changed my life.”

Whereas before Shanne admitted she couldn’t be bothered, she now suggests family activities on the weekend. The whole family has benefitted from her renewed energy for life.

“I feel like I have purpose now. I can see how much being unfit held me back. I feel like it’s held me back even from doing things with my daughter. Now she’ll say, “Mum, come and play on the trampoline with me” or “Come on, let’s go for a walk” and I say, “Sure” because I know I’m not going to die! I see the joy in her and that makes me happier.”

And the opportunity to blow people’s minds is always irresistible. One weekend, her husband was pushing a wheelbarrow of cement up their steep driveway. Shanne could see that it was a difficult task but when she offered her assistance, he waved her off, telling her it would be far too heavy for her. But Shanne was having none of it and together they pushed that barrow up the hill. In the process of wanting to prove something to her husband, she also proved something to herself. In just 8 weeks, her strength had increased dramatically. She was capable of things that had seemed impossible just weeks before.

“For him to see the strength and not just the physical changes was cool,” she says.

And the changes don’t stop there. By prioritising exercise in her life, Shanne has learnt the value of her health and fitness. On her way out the door to an evening class, her daughter was emotional and begged her not to go. “What do you care more about?” her daughter implored, “The gym or your family?” It would have been very easy for Shanne to give in and once upon a time, this would have been the perfect excuse. But as she told her daughter, it was only for one hour and when she got home, they would read stories just like always. It’s hard to explain to a tearful 7-year-old but by caring about her own well-being, Shanne is much better able to care for her family the rest of the time. Some day, Shanne hopes to train side by side with her daughter. And though her little girl doesn’t know it yet, that is probably one of the single greatest gifts her mum will have ever given her.

The first 8 week program began in September last year but Shanne’s thrice weekly training regimen continues and she still looks forward to every session. Turning up to a class where people are expecting her gives Shanne the drive to keep going.

“I can’t motivate myself. I like to think I can but I can’t!” And at Cinch, she says, “When you do show up, people are like, “Oh, I haven’t seen you for a bit. You’re doing well!” It’s really nice.”

Getting fit has made her aware of how Shanne fuels her body. She notices how certain foods make her feel and how the knock-on effects of a couple of drinks can last for days. She is far more in tune with how her body is feeling and she continues to amaze herself with how strong her body truly is. With every workout, she grows closer to realising her goal of shopping in a normal store. To walk in, browse the racks and feel confident that something will fit her.   

Training is not easy and Shanne works around several injuries, but I have never seen it stop her. She’ll simply ask her trainer for a modification and smash it out. Her will is ferocious and the fact that a blog post I wrote set her on this new course is something that will never cease to thrill me. But the credit is all with Shanne because nobody turns up and does the work for her. She is 100% in control of this journey.

And this journey is for life. She says, “Sometimes something will pop up on Facebook of people in their 70s doing weights or yoga. I want to be one of them, okay? That’s me! And in my head, I can do it!”

At the conclusion of our interview, Shanne told me, “It’s only been 8 weeks and I already feel amazing. I can’t imagine what I’m going to feel like in another 8 weeks.” That was almost half a year ago so I asked her for an updated quote and she told me, “I feel alive!”

It doesn’t get better than that.

If you want what Shanne is having and you live local to Macleod (I travel about 6kms to get there), then read on!

8 Week Training Transformation at Cinch


Cinch (in Melbourne suburb, Macleod) is a small boutique studio focusing on small group and personal training. An antidote to huge, impersonal gyms where many of us can feel intimidated and lost – especially when it comes to strength training – Nikki and her tertiary-qualified trainers aim to foster genuine relationships with their clients to maximise results.

Cinch are looking for two or three committed individuals who they can tuck under their trainer wings and really take to the next level in terms of strength, confidence and general awesomeness. There are a variety of options available to new clients but the Angie Package (I have my own package!!) which includes 3 x group training sessions per week is absolutely the best value for money. Clients achieve far better results when they train more frequently and can build a relationship with their trainers.

Optimal Results Package:

(The Angie Package)

  • 8 weeks
  • THREE small group training sessions per week (6 per fortnight – includes yoga)
  • Pay up front $528 or
  • Direct Debit $99 per fortnight (SAVE $132)


  • One on one goal setting, health check, body composition (measurements, body fat, muscle, hydration, bone) session with your trainer. Optional reviews are available at either two or four weekly intervals.
  • Text/phone/email support from your trainer
  • Weekly tips and guidance via email
  • Heavily discounted sessions with a medical nutrition expert.
  • Advice on other areas of your fitness e.g.: a program to use in your own gym/home, what to do for cardio

Twice a Week Package

  • 8 weeks
  • TWO group sessions per week
  • Pay up front $387.20
  • All other inclusions as per The Angie

Once a Week Package

  • 8 weeks
  • ONE group session per week
  • Pay up front $220
  • All other inclusions as per The Angie

Budget options – these prices are for group training sessions ONLY (no further inclusions but still loads of love!)

  • Pay as you go $27.50 per session
  • Book of ten sessions $247.50  
  • Book of twenty sessions $440

So if you're local to Macleod or nearby (I travel about 10 minutes to train at Cinch) and you're ready to make a change or change up your current exercise routine, we would LOVE to see you at Cinch. It's the most fun hard thing you'll ever do! 

If you have any questions or want to sign up, contact Nikki:

Email nikki@cinch.training

Call 0406 261 171

Note: these packages are all small GROUP training sessions. For further information and pricing on individual personal training sessions, contact Nikki.

Hello friends


I’m Angie!  I mum. I write. I wife. My husband would say this is the correct order.  He’s so neeeedy. I live with my family in Melbourne, Australia, where I complain about the weather for 90% of the year – but I can’t imagine living anywhere else. Except maybe in Lake Como, waving to my neighbours George and Amal each morning.

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