New mothers rebel with outdoor exercise regime in Aberdeen

tom mcara rebel pt workout aberdeen personal trainer business gatewayAs a new mum it can be hard to juggle the demands of a new born and find time to exercise or get outdoors and socialise. Yet Aberdeen personal trainer Tom McAra is making it easier for new mums to get out and active while enjoying the support of other new mothers. His company Rebel PT, an outdoor fitness and social club, was launched in 2012 with assistance from Business Gateway, Tom said:

“Business Gateway has been great. I’ve been to lots of their workshops, and the ones focusing on marketing and finance have been really helpful as these are areas I didn’t originally know very much about. Starting a business is a lot of work to take on alone and so the ongoing support provided by my Business Adviser has been invaluable. If I ever have any tough decisions to make then I know that I can just pick up the phone.”

Working as an estate agent in London for three years after graduating, Tom, 26, found that long hours and city life weren’t conducive to his passion for sports and the outdoors:

“London is a great city but I was miserable as I didn’t have the time to get outdoors. I realised there was more to life than working six days a week – being active is so important for peace of mind and feeling good,” Tom said.

Tom returned to his native Aberdeen and decided to break into the competitive fitness industry. Unlike many personal trainers his focus is not on calorie counting, instead he emphasises the importance of socialising and encourages his members to embrace the natural surroundings:

“The training sessions are very social and involve plenty of team work. I want to move people’s perceptions away from the desire to lose weight and encourage our members to enjoy an active outdoor lifestyle and the benefits associated with that.

Along with bootcamp-style training sessions I also organise events such as obstacle courses, hikes and cycle trips.  If the members look forward to seeing friends and training together then it takes away the monotony associated with exercise that puts so many people off.”

Park training rebel pt prams in the park workout aberdeen business gateway

Rebel PT run regular bootcamp-style sessions in Westburn Park and Denman Park, where members are advised to prepare to get muddy while having some fun. There are also basic bootcamp-style classes for those new to exercise or returning to exercise and looking for a lower intensity workout.

The past year has seen member numbers quadruple and Prams in The Park, a recent addition to the timetable, has already proved popular with the new mothers and babies of the city:

Claire Meikle Personal Trainer Rebel PT prams in the park“Claire, a fully trained personal trainer who started as a client and now instructs for Rebel PT, explained how difficult it is for new mums to get outdoors and be active.  In response we now offer an hour-long class which is a postnatal programme designed to be fun and interactive. Clients keep their baby alongside them in its pram, there’s also an opportunity for a cup of tea and a chat afterwards” Tom said.

Liz Pirrie, Business Adviser, Business Gateway Aberdeen City and Shire said, “I worked through the business idea with Tom and helped develop a business plan, from there we offered on-going support and I am delighted that Tom has attended many of our workshops.  We look forward to continuing to work with him as he develops his venture even further.”

Tom has also had a wealth of assistance from the local Princes' Trust office especially Sam Leys, the Regional Manager for The Princes Trust Scotland. Tom said about her support:

“I hadn't previously had much to do with the Princes trust and business gateway until I met Sam. She had come to one of my outdoor fitness sessions and recommended I get in touch because as a new start up she felt they would be able to provide a lot of support. Since that day the Princes Trust and Business Gateway have been exceptional in the encouragement and support they provide. It feels like you have a full team working for you to support your decisions and give you advice. Always keeping your best interests in mind.”

Tom added, “Being as passionate as I am about getting outdoors, I love the fact that Rebel PT is growing and people are starting to recognise the benefits of being involved. We live in an awesome country with so many fantastic activities on our door step. Having that as an office feels great and sharing it with everyone else is even better.”

tom mcara prams in the park rebel PT

Rebel PT

Tom McAra



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