You can read some testimonials from our clients below:
Both my wife & I are so pleased to have just ‘discovered’ Nordic Walking!
Both my wife & I are becoming ‘addicted’ even though we have only just started with Karen Lem & her Team at Ridgeway Nordic Walking. We both started our Nordic Training after a ‘Taster’ at Little Hay (Bovingdon) with Elizabeth, and she a very good instructor. So we then signed up to the formal 4 Training Sessions, which my wife has completed the first 4 Gears, with Elizabeth.
I did the first 2hr Session (Gears 1&2) but then realised that following my Stroke 5yrs ago I would prefer to ‘trade-in’ my next 2hr Session for Gears 3 & 4 for some ‘Well-Being Nordic Walks’. Karen Lem has been so supportive and helpful and has allowed me to ‘trade-in’ and swop over immediately & has also led me on a ‘Well-Being’ walk at Aldbury (Duck Pond)!
I have already completed 3 ‘Well-Being’ walks at Hastoe with Bryony and Pam and more already booked ! Apart from the health benefits (which are really superb), the social aspect of meeting new people is very important too.
My wife & I are so addicted that we have even just purchased our own Poles, although the leaders always ready to supply for the walk you our doing if you don’t own any yourself. We are also very impressed by the exercise-anywhere.co.uk to see the upcoming walks (of various types) and makes booking so easy.
– Peter & Janet
Happiness makes you fat and lazy which some call comfortable. I was in a very comfortable state until i looked at my holiday photos. The time had come to do something and so i took on Karen to whip me into shape. I was overweight, tired and sluggish all the time. I had no motivation and no determination. Then i met Karen.
“Next time you want to eat crisps, stuff them down your pants and look in the mirror first and then if you like what you see you can eat them!!” Crisps, they were my downfall and Karen was my motivation. This gave me determination and so the ball was rolling.
She had me trying everything as i had given up at the gym many years ago. Mind numbingly boring places when you are alone. Karen had me in the gym doing weights and boxing and cardio and vibro gym. All these things i had never done before, not properly anyway. And then came the outdoors. She trained me to Nordic Walk and sent me to Bootcamp.
The conclusion and end result is………………… I am a Nordic Walking, Gym class enthusiast, Boxercising Bootcamp junkie and i am loving every minute of it. I am no longer tired (only when i have worked hard), no longer sluggish and i feel guilty if i miss a class. I think about my weight and what i eat without faddy dieting and have totally changed the way i think and feel about exercise. Yes exercise is fun but you need the motivation to get the ball rolling and Karen did that for me.
Thanks Karen. I look forward to the new, slimmer, fitter me going on my first ever girlie holiday at 40 to Corchevel Nordic Walking. Wouldnt have done it without you Karen and the Vivo team.
– SB 2015
I started to work with Karen following a very difficult time in my life. A terrible bereavement, overworking, and my 40th Birthday meant that I was physically and mentally in quite serious trouble. I knew that I had to commit to some big changes if I was going to get myself out of a deep rut.
Karen listened carefully – and at length to me. She intuitively understood what I was struggling to find the words to say and over the next few weeks gently but firmly began to address my low energy levels, lack of fitness, low mood and motivational problems.
18 months later I am a very different person. Committing to twice weekly personal training sessions has been one of the best decisions – and financial investments – I have ever made. For me the key has been the huge variety of exercises, equipment, ideas and disciplines that Karen introduces with great skill and no warning. My natural ambivalence to regular workouts is a constant challenge and Karen spots it every time… introducing a new twist or concept to keep me intrigued and working hard.
I now feel stronger, fitter, healthier and happier.
Karen is a very special person with holistic instincts and exceptional talent to respond, motivate, encourage and succeed with the most resistant of minds and bodies!
– Dr. S J
8 years ago, following a significant bereavement, I decided to improve my mental and physical wellbeing once and for all. Finding Karen was life changing and has led to a sustained programme of fitness enabling me to feel stronger, happier and more confident. Karen has been endlessly flexible – adapting to my needs over time – providing constant variation, challenge, support and fun during personal training sessions. I lead a very busy professional life and simply could not manage without the level of fitness and health that my time with Karen has built up. I am eternally grateful to her.”
My husband and I had tried several ways to lose weight and get fitter. Our problem was that if either of us couldn’t be bothered, the other followed suit. By committing to meet with Karen twice a week initially to increase the amount of activity in our lives, we found it had a very quick result in a fast loss of weight and feeling generally much better within ourselves – and that was without changing our eating or drinking habits! Thereafter we felt really motivated to take it further and curb some of our bad eating habits and continued to lose weight, tone up and feel fitter and have more energy. She also makes it great fun.
– KM and AM
I started training with Karen in September Earlier that year I had run my first 5km charity fun run, which had given me a goal for my training. It had also given me a taste for running and I wanted to extend my distance to 10km but found it difficult to push beyond my comfort zone. In addition, I wanted to improve my overall body shape which was showing the effects of time (41 years) and two children.
I started with intensive twice weekly sessions for 6 weeks after which I noticed significant improvements in muscle tone and development, as well as flexibility and stamina. Since this time I have continued with weekly training sessions with Karen (with the occasional break during school holidays etc). I have now participated in the 5km Race for Life again, improving my previous time by nearly 2 minutes. My time improved still further in May plus I finally managed to reach my original goal of competing in my first 10km race which I managed in a respectable 60 minutes and 22 seconds.
I am very proud of my achievement and certain that I would not have reached the 10km goal without Karen’s support. She is fun to work with ensures I get a good work out. Sessions are variable which help when I am working on my own in the gym; I prefer to vary my training rather than stick to a rigid routine.
Most importantly, however, is that I really enjoy my personal training sessions. To some extent it is pure vanity; to be told you are working hard, looking good etc really helps with motivation and in our busy lives is not something we get told very often. I am also now a lot fitter and stronger and more inclined to push myself when training on my own. I look and feel great – healthy, slimmer, more toned & my husband is also very pleased with the results!
– Sue Davey, June 2009
Karen is excellent at listening to individual needs and using these to plan a realistic regime. She will then provide the support needed to help you reach your goal.
– S D
I used to go to the gym with gritted teeth and grim determination, always feeling better for the exercise but rarely looking forward to going. Meeting Karen and Julie have changed that experience entirely, now I go of my own accord and miss it if I can’t make it.
As a team, we have achieved everything I had in mind at the start, for me that meant developing a healthier body, a better shaper and most importantly a sense of well being and I had a really good time doing it. On the odd occasion I might feel a bit begrudging about getting out of bed ‘early’ on a Saturday morning Karen’s enthusiastic, warm and energetic greetings instantly made me shrug off the blues. Karen and her team were highly professional but human at the same time – positive, happy, stretching when you need to be challenged and flexible on the days when the mind is willing and the body just isn’t. I never left a session anything other than entirely satisfied and I knew I was in safe hands.
All of the goals we set at the start were regularly monitored and reviewed; I knew I was achieving good results, sustained over time, because it was recorded in my personal plan. I’m not perfect, sometimes we all go back a bit before going forwards and on those occasions I gained a great deal from the commitment and support that Karen had made to the process, so we turned it around for the better. Charts are helpful for diagnosing changes to the programme when they are needed (to ensure continued success) but perhaps more importantly you will see and feel progress being made for your self, with Karen’s expertise and encouragement, if you are prepared to make the time to do it. And the rewards go beyond physically looking better. Regular exercise makes me feel better about myself and gives me more energy and the mentality to enjoy life in so many ways – mind, body and spirit! Karen and team are the living testament to the fact that exercise can be fun and can help toward generating the kind of inner confidence that other people are drawn to. So, I have no hesitation in recommending them; why not allow a little of the ‘Vivo’ magic to rub off on you too.
I have always found that the sessions I have with Karen or her trainers to be excellent in making me work really hard and also I have found that the better I feel physically the more confident I am and I owe that to Karen.
The sessions are varied so that I don’t get bored and also I have had to option to choose what I want to do especially when I was training for my 5k run which involved training by pounding to streets of Tring which was good for me.
What I have learnt is that I can be who ever I want and do whatever I want and I say that as when I first started to work with Karen I was fed up at work and seeking a new challenge and I landed to job I wanted the following January just a few months after completing my 10 week session with Karen.
I would and have recommended Karen and her trainers to friends and intend on returning for another lot of sessions to give me the kick up the bottom we all need from time to time.
As a science trained person, I appreciate Karen’s thorough understanding of sports physiology. Using this expertise, she tailors special advice for each individual. What’s more, her fun and encouraging approach is brilliant! Thanks for your help Karen.
I am a 43 year old single mother of 2 and have always been very fit and healthy.I have noticed a massive improvement in my core strength since training with Vivo
I am able to work more effectively in body pump and step aerobics classes as a direct result of my training with Julie. She is fabulous and has enhanced my training no end!