Set 1 : Meet Bryony
Meet Bryony, Law School Student & CrossFitter
Our Set 1 Launch Campaign was to capture female power, through the lens of training. To do that authentically, for each woman, we asked them a series of questions. To learn more about what training means to them. These conversations were inspiring and humbling. We’re sharing their stories back because they deserve to be told.
Meet Bryony. Having been based in London for 3 years working as a Management Consultant she recently moved back home to Leeds to study Law. She started CrossFit in 2018 and hasn’t looked back.
Tell us a bit about your training routine over the last 12 months?
When I was living in London and working full time I was training most mornings at 6am. I ended up overtraining and putting high expectations on myself which left me injured. It felt horrible at the time but it taught me to pay more attention to my body and how it should be working for my long-term health.
During lockdown I was training in my garden with two 15kg dumbbells and I unexpectedly loved it. I missed training with people, and the intensity was lower but I did more accessory work and actually got a lot stronger.
Since moving to Leeds I’ve found a new gym - Form. One that has a similar friendly and welcoming community and approach to my old gym. I’m now smarter with my training - focussing on my weaknesses and listening to my body. Now that I’m at University I can train early evening and it’s more relaxed, sociable and overall a more enjoyable time to train.
Is there a woman that’s had a real impact on your training?
The reason I’m doing CrossFit is because of Nicola. I was hesitant to start because I didn’t want to go back into an obsessive relationship with food and training. But Nicola and I had trained together before through playing Waterpolo, so she knew my abilities and how I liked to train. The first session we went to together I loved - it was all the stuff I’d missed about team training and was instantly hooked.
Why do you turn up to train every day?
Learning new skills. Bettering and developing myself. The people.
When I’m training I can be authentically me, which is amazing for my headspace. When I’m stressed and go training, it's playtime. When I train I feel powerful both physically and mentally, and this makes me better on so many fronts. It has a huge impact on how I conduct myself.
What do you think about when you’re training?
I use it to clear my mind. Training is about creating space - headspace and space around me that I can hold and take with me. There’s also definitely a little bit inside of me that wants to impress the people around me, whether that’s because I have a cheeky gym crush (who doesn’t?!) or because I’m training with athletes I admire. I think about doing well for those in the space around me and hopefully throw some good positive competitive spirit in the mix too!
What’s one movement that makes you feel empowered?
Lifting a barbell of any kind makes me feel empowered. I love a strong clean and jerk and snatches are certainly fun when you get them right! I also feel very powerful at the top of a Handstand Push-up – it’s a movement I always thought other people did & now I can do them too!
What’s something you’ve learned about yourself through your training?
I’m more capable than I think. I’ve learned to have confidence and belief in myself. I recognised that I take on other people’s expectations of me, and put too much pressure on myself.
How do the benefits of training impact the rest of your life?
It impacts every single area of my life. It makes me feel strong, powerful and capable. Physically and mentally. Training helps me to have confidence in my opinions and hold my own space better. I’ve become less self-critical and more open to trying new things.
To follow Bryony’s journey see here.