Dal Dhaliwal is the first Indian woman to run a successful private fitness studio for women in the UK: Body Perfect Personal Training Studio in Coventry – for women. She is also the first Indian female Health and Fitness TV/Radio Presenter in the UK
Dal is a health fitness expert who has been in the Wellness Industry since 1998 her passion is to help busy women feel and look good, gain confidence and be the best possible version of themselves.
Tell us a bit more about your business.
I run Warwickshire’s most prestigious women’s personal training studio – based in the heart of Coventry. Body Perfect Personal Training Studio specialises in health and fitness for women. It offers women a very private, professional, welcoming and relaxing atmosphere. We cater for all women from the complete gym novice to the advanced athlete. Unlike some intimidating gyms and health clubs we deliver an experience that is both unique, personalised and delivers amazing results!
We teach women strategies to overcome obstacles and develop a positive mental attitude, and share with them methods on how they too can follow a healthy lifestyle which includes exercise, correct nutrition and wellbeing.
How did you get into the world of fitness?
I got into fitness after the birth of my second daughter – I have 3 daughters. I started to workout at home and started to take a keen interest in health, fitness and nutrition. After the birth of my third daughter I decided to study and qualify to become a Personal Trainer and class instructor.
What has been your biggest achievement to date?
My biggest achievement is being UK’s first Asian Female Health and Fitness Coach to launch a private fitness gym. I’m also the first Asian female Health and Fitness TV/ Radio Presenter in the UK. I’m very proud to have been working in the wellness Industry for over 16 years.
What inspired you to start Body Perfect Personal Training?
I had held various posts in the health and fitness industry, which included working in a premier Health and fitness club in Coventry. At the same time I worked outside in the community teaching classes. My career spans over 16 years in this industry. I have always been very driven and dedicated. Owning my own health fitness gym was my ambition. I also decided I wanted to help as many people as possible and wanted to establish myself as a leading health fitness expert in my city. I wanted to spread the word of wellbeing to all women – especially the Asian community. The other reason for wanting to start my own business was to have full control and control of all business decisions I made.
What are some of the health issues that you regularly come across in clients? And how can we take better care of our health in general?
I come across a lot of health issues, such as Diabetes, joint problems i.e. bad backs, knees. I work with a lot of overweight clients – Women who have often struggled with their weight for most of their life. I also work with clients with issues such as; comfort eating, depression and body image, low confidence, low self-esteem etc.
We can all take more care of our health by taking time with preparing and planning our food. Planning leaves less room for failure and snacking on processed food. It’s important to understand which foods are good for us and which ones will add unwanted calories – and excess body weight. It’s also important to get more active and start moving. Exercising does not have to be a gym workout -choose an activity that you enjoy. If you enjoy something then you are more likely to stick to it. It’s important to remember consistent exercise and good nutrition are important to keeping healthy.
What have been some of your biggest challenges to overcome?
I think opening a business in 2011 – at peak of a recession was definitely a risky decision. So making the decision to move from employed to self-employed was a tough decision due to the economic climate. But I am a risk taker and once I make a decision there’s no changing my mind. The other challenging part was learning parts of the business at a deeper level – which I had never had done so before. Such as; marketing, accounts and developing an understanding of IT skills.
The other challenging part of the business was the hours. I found myself working 7 days a week. Nearly every spare minute I had was spent on the business. I also have a family – I’m married and have three daughters. I had very little spare time but fortunately I have excellent time management skills, and tried to balance everything. It can become a bit of a ‘juggling act’ for women in business – therefore good time management skills are essential to have.
It’s coming up to Christmas and during this time we all tend to over indulge. What are your top tips for people to enjoy all that the festive season has to offer without feeling guilty?
These are just a few handy tips that can help keep you on the straight and narrow so you don’t go completely off the rails and undo all the hard work you’ve done this year.
- Ditch the Sweets and chocolates – Swap sugary sweets for fruit – cranberries are great at this time of year with only 25 calories in half a cup.
- Family Walks – Walking the dog or just going for a walk together is a great way for everyone to burn calories and enjoy the winter scenery
- Alcohol Alternatives – Fruit cocktails are a healthy and delicious alternative – or of course you could offer to drive and stick to water saving yourself a hangover and your friends a fortune on taxi fare.
- Healthy Christmas Dinner – When it comes to the big event pile your plate high with veg and opt for a nice lean turkey. Cauliflower is a great source of Vitamin C and it’s good for your heart.
- Dance the Night Away – If you are out at a party hit the dance floor and burn off those excess calories.
What has been the best bit of advice ever given to you?
Surround yourself with like-minded people. Get a mentor. Be patient and never give up trying.
If you were stranded on a desert island, what three things would you take?
Sketch pad – I love drawing and painting. A toothbrush and coconut oil
What advice would you to give to those who want to lose weight (and have lost weight) and maintain that weight loss?
Set yourself a new goals – Envision yourself fitting into those jeans you just bought or that bikini for your beach holiday. Taking these small steps will really help you to reach your ultimate goal. Prepare and plan your exercise and nutrition. If you have lost weight and want to keep the weight off then continue with your new good habits. You can challenge yourself by changing your exercise routine so the body doesn’t reach a plateau. Invest In a decent Personal Trainer to design a new plan for you.
Be positive – It’s very important to believe in yourself! – You can achieve almost anything if you believe in yourself. Be patient – You won’t achieve your goals overnight and set realistic time scales to reach your goals. Don’t get discouraged with slow progress or setbacks. You will see results if you keep yourself focused.