The Story of Keep Fit Cornwall ...

7 years ago Keep Fit Cornwall was officlally launched by Susie Dunstone and we are pleased to share with you her story of how it all happened .............

Throughout my childhood I had always had a keen interest in amateur dramatics, dancing and music. I would spend hours listening to CD's and dancing around the living room driving my parents mad!

My passion for teaching fitness all started in school when one day my PE teacher, knowing my background in regular school productions, asked me if I wanted to teach my peers some exercises to music in our class ..... Well I jumped at the chance!

This became a regular thing and knowing that I wanted to do this as a career started here. I would think of funny, funky, easy to follow moves that I could teach and often had the class in fits of laughter with some of the things I would ask them to do! ''Feed the chickens, Milk the cows'' I would shout and you will still find these moves in classes today!

Even though this was my absolute passion, throughout my final years at school I found myself struggling with my weight and was regularly bullied because I had much bigger hips then the rest of the girls. My body confidence slowly got shattered and by the time I was 20 my dreams of becoming an instructor were fading. I was so body conscious I was always wondering what people were thinking of me and my hips so what did I turn to for comfort ? FOOD. Causing me to put on more weight - at my biggest I was a size 20.

By this time I was 24 and with my dream of becoming an aerobics teacher in mind, I decided to loose a little weight with diet and exercise. I started with the diet first and once I had my head around that, I then started to introduce aerobics back into my life...

  • I know what its like to be the girl at the back of the class, confidence shattered.
  • I have been the body concious girl.
  • I have been the unfit one desperately wanting to be able to do daily tasks without being out of breath.
  • I have been the girl who for comfort, ate takeaways 4 times per week.

With sheer drive and determination of my goal I was on a roll and was at my desired weight within 12 months and the first thing I did when I got there was to sign up to become and aerobics teacher!

It was one of the hardest things I have ever done and 14 weeks, 2 anatomy and physiology exams and a practical exam in front of 3 examiners later, I passed and was exstatic! I was offered teaching work by the leisure centre there and then and just 2 weeks after I set up my own evening class at Chacewater Village Hall and have never looked back!

My classes soon became a participant favouirite and before I knew it I was full every week.

At the time I was working full-time for Cornwall Council and was very career minded. I had been working for them ever since I was 16 and had worked my way up the ladder to a managerial role. In 2011 Cornwall Council went under a big re-structuring process. Everything was changing and some people had the chance to take Voluntary Redundancy. Now, this is something I NEVER EVER thought I would even entertain but as my Chacewater class was going so well it was now or never to launch my passion full time 'Keep Fit Cornwall.'

In July 2011 I handed in my resignation - my boss was in shock! He tried everything he could to change my mind. He asked me to work on until December 2011 to which I agreed. As soon as my resignation got accepted I then launched a full evening class timetable and worked Keep Fit Cornwall alongside my day job re-investing the money that I was earning so I could buy all the equipment that I needed.

I left the Council on the 16th December 2011 .....

With hard work and sheer determination of my passion I am proud to say that we now run a 6 day per week class timetable. We are helping people to achieve their health and fitness goals, regardless of their fitness level, shape or size. We pride ourselves in making everyone feel welcome and making exercise fun ..... SO LET US WELCOME YOU!

Thank you for taking the time to read my story .....

With Very Warm Regards - Susie x