Tameka Small was the first Psycle instructor I ever spun with. Or should that be ‘went spinning’ with, or even ‘sweated-so-much-on-a-stationary-bike-that-I-thought-I-was-going-to-drown’ with? Her engery was through the roof and though years have passed since then I have had the pleasure of training with her multiple times since, especially in Nike Events, where she is a N+TC Elevated Trainer. She is the latest wonderful person to star in my London ETC series. She talked to me about her favourite areas of London, what healthy means to her, and how she plans to slay 2017. Enjoy!
What is your favourite space to train in and why? This can be an outdoor or indoor space – or both!
Outside. Especially running to scenic parts of London, it just makes me realise how amazing a place London is. I love running to along London Bridge, you get great views of some pretty amazing iconic spots.
What is a typical training session for you like?
I usually keep it really simple. I might do a skipping session followed by some strength and mobility work especially for weaker joints like shoulders, followed by foam rolling and stretch.
Do you have a particular area of London or a route which always gets you out of the door whether to run or walk?
Yes, I love running exploring Regent’s Canal, it gives you a totally different perspective on London.
As a Nike N+TC Elevated Trainer encouraging people to train and motivating them to continue is obviously very important to you. Can you tell me a little more about where you passion for this came from?
I was never on my school’s or college’s athletics team, but I loved sport. My passion to train started mainly when I took up martial arts when I was 20. With each form that I practiced over the years: Capoeira, Kung Fu and Muay Thai, I learnt about having a limitless mindset and focus on what I wanted to see and achieve. Above all, the biggest lesson was self-belief. It does matter how late you start your training journey, know that it’s always the right time. And having that positive mindset shift helps to drive that self-motivation into motion.
In a world that’s becoming more and more health conscious, what does the word ‘healthy’ mean to you?
For me, the word ‘healthy’ is about having a healthy colourful variety in what we eat as well as how we train. It also means having that positive and accepting mindset which gives us that emotional balance too. Having that balance helps make ‘healthy’ become part of our lifestyle, giving it longevity far beyond those jeans we want to get into.
What does 2017 have in store for you?
2017 will be a big year, like every year I guess, but I’m really excited to learn and share different ways of training. I’m loving yoga at the moment and calisthenics, so we shall see! I love switching things up and giving myself a new challenge to get into.
Can you tell me a little about what motivates you to train that little bit harder and sweat that little bit more?
Train harder, yes, but also train smarter. Listen to your body, know when you honestly need a recover day and know when it’s time to crush that workout. If it’s time to blitz that workout and train hard, my motivation is always a banging playlist.
As hectic as London is, I think it is one of the best places to take a breath and relax. Do you have a hidden gem, a secret hidey-hole, or a space which you absolutely love where you can relax and recover?
We are so lucky in London to have over 3,000 open spaces and parks in London. Getting outside and having a walk or a sit down and just being amongst nature can be the simplest yet powerful way to relax and recharge.
With London ETC I want the ETC part to go beyond this city. Is there anywhere else (and this can be anywhere in the world) where you love to be? What is it about this place that makes you smile when you think of it?
I’d love to be in Central or South America. They have some amazingly beautiful natural places. Surfing in Costa Rica is an absolute dream and the ‘pura vida’ vibe gets me every time I go there.
Tameka, I loved having you as part of my LondonETC series and thanks so much for answering my questions! Next week’s LondonETC is going to be hitting Rosh ETC on Monday and it’ll be starring the one and only Emma Kirky-O!
Image is courtesy of Tameka Small