Transformation Tuesday with Sheila Haddad


Happy Tuesday! Sheila joins us at our Tampa studio and like all of us, enjoys the challenge of Mantra. And although she does travel often for work -- Sheila is a regular to our studio and we love it! 

What's your best advice for others who are just starting to work out at Mantra? It’s very challenging, and most of us find ourselves very sore. But you came for a reason, and to keep going, requires discipline and always remembering why you are there. Every so often re-evaluate your goals, what have you achieved and reset new ones if need be. Keeping my goals in mind keeps me coming. The best part is the feeling after the workout. It’s all worth it.

Tell us a little about your first few classes. How difficult did you find them? Hands down, it is the most challenging work out I have ever had. I consider myself an athlete, I have done a lot in my life, and continue to do so. This is the kind of workout you and your body don’t get used to. It never gets easier, which is the challenge, there is always fine tuning the technique to continue to get more out of each move. I was so sore the first time I couldn’t walk for 3 days :) I knew then it was for me! I knew I NEEDED this.

What have been some of your biggest challenges along the way? Are there certain moves you find super difficult? Has it been tough to juggle multiple workouts into your already-busy schedule every week?  I travel frequently and find that I hate going away and missing a class. One, I know it’s hard to get back into, two, I’ll be sore again. But I have found it keeps building, so even being gone, it doesn’t take much to get right back into the swing of it, body adjusts and says, oh yes, I remember this. It’s good. Each instructor is different yet great. The variety is good. I find when we do certain movements that concentrate on one body part for a length of time, that’s the biggest challenge, the fatigue or pain literally in the booty that happens from these prolonged movements. And that we go slow, phew, lots of breathing! What’s nice is the variety and the encouragement of the instructors that keep me going.

What has joining Mantra been like for you, and what kind of support have you received both from your fellow Megaformer friends and the Mantra trainers and owners? I discovered Mantra after visiting my daughter in San Diego who teaches Lagree out there. I took her class and OMG. I came home and knew I had to find this. I feel so fortunate that we have 2 on the west coast of Florida. There is nothing like it and the notion of going somewhere where it doesn’t exist…. well, I need it, I believe I can say I am addicted. The instructors are the best. They are not only enthusiastic and supportive, but so encouraging during class. Just when I think I want to give up, they seem to sense that and say just the right thing so I believe I can hang in a little longer. It’s a wonderful atmosphere, and as long as I am in Tampa, I will be at Mantra.

How far have you come since that first class? The biggest benefit and one I had been looking for in a variety of other workouts and not finding, is a huge increase in energy, and a feeling of inner strength. I have been and still am a weight lifter for over 30 yrs and was a competitive body builder, so it wasn’t muscle strength I needed, it was a deep inner, core strength. Mantra gives me that. I also wasn’t sure how my lower back would do because it had gotten fragile and worn down from the wear and tear of life. I am so happy to report that it is strong, supports me, I have no pain, but took my time building to that level. At my age, it’s a super workout for low stress on the joints. The instructors are great for offering modifications if necessary. My husband comments all the time on how much livelier I am :) and the strength he sees I have gotten. Losing weight wasn’t a goal, I wanted to feel stronger, young again :), more energy, and the side benefits to achieving that has been a tightening up overall of my body, helping to work a little more against that creeping gravity. I have been here at Mantra for 15 months, and I can’t imagine ever giving up.

Thank you for sharing Sheila! If you want to be our showcased as our next Transformation Tuesday story, please let your studio know.