Image: Courtesy of Thea Hughes

This NYC-Based Strength Trainer’s Approach to Fitness is Designed to Last a Lifetime

We interview Thea Hughes.

Meet Thea Hughes, an up and coming strength trainer in Brooklyn and probably one of the most knowledgeable fitness enthusiasts in the space today. For her, fitness not only focuses on an outward transformation, but one that changes you — mind, body, and soul. It’s connected to a strengthening of the mind, a process that not only makes you feel good but leaves you with a sense of inspiration — for the future and beyond. Her clientele is pretty impressive to boot — Thea works with everyone from celeb facialist Sofie Pavitt, to DJ and creator Amrit, Director/Photographer Christelle de Castro and so many others — she even used to be the Creative Director at SESSION.
She’s definitely someone to watch in the fitness space, so we sat down with her to learn more about her fitness philosophies, views on wellness, and all about her fitness program, Max Effort Training. Keep reading to learn more!
thea hughes fitness
Image: Courtesy of Thea Hughes

Thea Hughes’ Approach to Fitness is Designed to Last a Lifetime

What inspired you to get into fitness?

Fitness, movement, and wellness routines have been a part of my life since I was very young. What inspired me to pivot into fitness as a full time career though was a mix of convergent interests really. I was formerly working in marketing/advertising at a creative sports and culture agency while steeped in fitness in my off-hours (both participating and teaching). I was also very motivated by the idea of helping my girlfriends feel as confident in their bodies as they did in their professional ideas. It was the perfect storm.

What do you love most about fitness?

The internal growth and tenacity – the mental side of fitness. I love seeing the ‘revolution of the mind’ that happens when clients become in control of how they feel in their bodies. Very much so tapping into and managing your internal narrative.

Image: Courtesy of Thea Hughes

Tell me more about your approach to wellness and Max Effort Training.

My approach to wellness is teaching people how they can create sustainable shifts in their lifestyles and build a solid foundation for long-term results. We focus a lot on short-term objectives — losing 10 lbs, fitting into “___,” running the race, and less so on syncing our desires with our daily actions. MET — while heavily doused with customized strength programming and nutrition planning via education –  is intended to be a roadmap that lasts a lifetime. It’s less about a specific type of training that you should do or follow for the rest of your life, but learning how to show up daily as the person you want to be tomorrow, today.

What advice do you have for those that are new to fitness, wellness, or even self-care? Why are these important pillars of a healthy life?

Just start! I would encourage anyone new to fitness to shift their thinking from ‘achieving’ to ‘being.’ It’s not about going from 0 to 100, or about doing it all perfect. It’s about finding presence and alignment with your goals in a way that you can act on daily. Leaning into an accumulation of ‘good-for-you’ decisions that will bring you towards your goals. This is a journey and not a destination. Create and find joy in it!

thea hughes fitness
Image: Courtesy of Thea Hughes

What’s next for you and Max Effort Training?

I’ve just relaunched MET with three ways to join; Original, Light, and Prenatal/Postpartum, and have also been busy creating new specialized programming that lives beyond, or in addition to, the customized strength training you receive as part of the programming. Think Glute Build, Core Stability, and Kettlebell Athletic Development — as well as a forthcoming Bridal program. Also working on some fun events, retreats, and a new issue of Max Effort Magazine for 2023. Most importantly though I want to be able to connect with and help as many clients as I can. Growing the business isn’t always easy but it’s so rewarding when I’m able to see clients unlock that revolution of the mind as Gil Scott-Heron puts it. Seeing their progress become linear and exponential is… well, it’s hard to put words to it.

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