September, 30 2012
Port Hedland
Annet van der Voort
Photography

Karen

 

I’ve been a personal trainer for about 15 years and doing this job for two years. I’m an Active Life Coach at Tropicana (Ess Port Haven Village). The money initially attracted me, after that it follows my background, promoting and encouraging people to look after themselves. It’s provided a consistent income. The disadvantage of being a self-employed personal trainer is that the income is unpredictable, when people cut something, this is usually first.

An average day would be a split shift, 6am to 12pm, and 2.30pm to 8pm. I finish work and go straight to bed. Even though we do a split shift, it still feels like a 14 hour day. In the morning we do warm-up stretches with staff so they are ready to tackle their day and reduce the risk of injury. I run the gym, sports and social activities. Our biggest job here is to promote healthy lifestyle choices. We have a labelling system in the food hall, eat most, eat moderately & eat less, which encourages people to make healthier choices about health and well being.

I have 4 children at home, the youngest is my daughter. She is turning 12 in a week, I'll be at work. She is always asking; When are you coming home Mum? It’s really tough. I don't plan on doing this for too much longer. I’d like to go into mental health after this. Talking to a lot of people up here I see this is a big area that needs to be addressed in this sector. For me, being away from my partner and kids is almost unbearable. It puts a lot of strain on all relationships. Especially your partner at home. It’s hard. I personally want to give more to my relationship and more support to my partner. You feel quite inadequate. It’s emotionally really tough.

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