This has been a long time coming.

Sometimes it’s just a bit scary putting yourself out there and telling the truth about yourself. So here we go. I’m Giulia, which is pronounced just like Julia (in case you were wondering), and I am A SHOT OF GINGER. I chose this name because I feel it’s an appropriate representation of me: a fiery redhead who is very honest, even if it can sometimes leave a bit of a sour taste.

I was born in Italy, my mum is half-English half-Italian and my stepfather is Swiss and I grew up in a Bed&Breakfast under the Tuscan sun surrounded by guests from all over the world. At the age of 19 I left home to study Civil Engineering in Manchester and now, about 10 years later, I’m still here with a Masters Degree, a PhD and a Personal Trainer qualification. You might think what has the PT qualification got to do with this story, but actually it has everything to do with it.

The three years of my PhD have been a game changer in my life. I have never struggled so much to get myself out of bed everyday. I felt like I had made all the wrong decisions in life and truly felt lost, which was extremely unlike me, as I have always been very career focused and determined to achieve what I had set myself in life. What did get me out of bed everyday was going to the gym. I started attending lots of classes, mainly cardio based, and messing about with the resistance machines, but felt as if I was not really sure of what I was doing.

One day, I went in the gym to get a new program and the duty manager who had seen my attempts at getting fitter and stronger suggested I tried a session with a Personal Trainer who ran HIGH PERFORMANCE CONDITIONING, which was located in a room at the back of the gym I had never even noticed. I still remember walking in in my worn-out volleyball hoodie and meeting James who just asked me whether I wanted to try a workout there and then and I thought why not?

From that day, I started doing PT sessions twice a week and trained by myself the rest of the time and still attended some of the classes at the gym. Every day I would learn something: a new exercise, a new muscle, a new nutritional fact. I was like a curious child, constantly asking my PT “why?” and trying to learn as much as possible. With time, I grew more confident, gradually summoned the confidence to enter the free-weights room on my own and started asking people how many sets they had left because I wanted to get on that squat rack.

No matter how low I felt about my life and where I was at, going to the gym and having that time to shut everything out and focus on myself, on lifting that little bit heavier or doing that extra burpee, brought back a smile to my face. Ends up I did get that PhD finished, but also qualified as a Personal Trainer and started working at High Performance Conditioning because I decided I would like to be there for people that need a little saving, like I needed at the time.

I hope for this blog to be an inspiration to anyone who wants to better themselves, be that getting fitter, stronger, healthier or for who just needs “A SHOT OF GINGER” to push that little bit harder to achieve their goals. I will talk about training, nutrition and general lifestyle and welcome any tips or comments if you guys have something you would like me to discuss.