Earlier this month, a tattooed, bleached-haired New Yorker took up residence in my Deep Southern heart, along with the hearts of thousands of people across the country who read about her here. Then here. And then here.
Social media buzzed like crazy with the news: “Did y’all SEE this?” I freaking LOVE her.” “She’s so brave!” “Anula is my spirit animal!” OK, I made up that last one, but had I thought of it earlier, I would have used it myself. Combine the buzz with the fact that this chick truly GETS the meaning of gratitude – she took the time to reply with thanks every time her name was mentioned – and it’s easy to see why we all have Anula Fever.
‘Til now, Anula Maiberg has held a few titles – most related to her studio, New York City’s Sixth Street Pilates. Co-founder, co-owner, writer, blogger, and trainer all described her perfectly, But bust.com just added one heckuva notch to this dynamic woman’s belt – “Badass Pilates Instructor.”
Now, I have never stepped foot in Sixth Street Pilates. As a studio owner, I’m doing pretty well just to step foot into my own bathroom from time to time. But I couldn’t agree more with their description of Anula. All I needed was to read this from The Huffington Post:
“Maiberg doesn’t believe most people are looking at their instructor as an aspirational body. ‘They’re looking at you as an aspirational person,’ she explained.”
Oh. My. Word. (Preach).
As word began to spread about Anula Maiberg, I began to realize just how much her profile stories inspired every single person who read them. And as a trainer, I can give insight into why that happened.
Not a day goes by in my studio that I don’t have this conversation with at least one client:
Me: “Good morning, Jane Doe! How are you feeling today?”
Jane Doe: “Fat.”
Really. And trust me, there is not one moment that this happens that I do not resist the urge to wash a mouth out with soap. Not because the word “fat” is bad. It’s deeper than that.
I do what I do and I am passionate about what I do because I believe in Pilates, in its power, in its inner and outer transformation capabilities, in its simplicity and its complexity, in its history and in its present. But I could honor all of those things just by being a student.
I am a Pilates trainer – YOUR trainer – because I truly, madly, deeply LOVE you. I love who you are, who you are becoming. I know your birthday, and I beat myself up over it when I forget it.. I know your children’s names, where you grew up, and how long you’ve been married, divorced, or both. When you walk in the door, I know immediately if something is on your heart. I know your insecurities, your struggles, your strengths, and every beautiful quirk that makes you YOU. When you and I spend an hour of one-on-one, uninterrupted time together two days a week, that is more one-on-one time that either of us spends with anyone else. We. Are. Family.
So when you are mean to yourself, I hurt. I take it personally. I obsess over how to make you see how perfect and beautiful and strong you are. Sometimes, when you leave, I cry.
There is not a soul within the Core Thirty family that doesn’t hum with beauty – my plea is that everyone listen for that sound within themselves, and then, just hum along.
As I’ve told you before, Anula – thank you. But this time, my thanks are not for being a badass instructor or an amazing role model or a beautiful writer
Thank you for reminding ME why I am a Pilates trainer.