Meet Jemma Thomas, Jemma’s Health Hub

1. When did you start your brand?

I started Jemma’s Health Hub (www.jemmashealthhub.com) in 2015.

It’s an online fitness community focusing on helping women feel supported and mentally stronger through regular fitness workouts. We try to promote a real community feel where our members take part in four workouts each week, alongside other ‘hubbers’. Three of these are on facebook live at 6.30am on Monday, Wednesdays and Fridays and focus on different parts of the body.  Hubbers are encouraged to post their sweaty selfies after each session and post messages of support and concern to each other to help encourage one another to keep going, particularly in these trickier times.

2. Tell me about WHY you decided to start it?

Unlike many personal trainers, I hadn’t dreamed of being a fitness expert! In fact, I worked in advertising in London for most of my 20s. It was only after I had my first son, Jude that I felt inspired to set it up. I really struggled with my mental health at that time and it was exercise that pulled me through so I wanted to create something for mums, in a similar boat to me, to make it easy fo them to fit in exercise from home, and feel supported along the way.

I really wanted to share the message that exercise doesn’t have to be about punishment and the idea of going hard or going home. It’s about having fun, of taking care of yourself and making you feel good and I hope that’s the message I’ve got across to all of my members in The Hub who join me each week to work out at 6.30am and then post a proud sweaty selfie!

3. Who inspires you?

I’m a big fan of Shaun T who’s an American Fitness Entrepreneur. He’s really inspiring and positive with his work. 

There’s also Sophia Amoruso, the found of Nasty Gal and Girlboss Media – she’s so creative and pioneering with her business.

4. What is your top business tip?

My top advice is to work out your target audience and brand values first. You really need to know who you’re catering for. I knew immediately that I wanted to target women like me; who had young families and wanted to feel good through exercise but were struggling to find the time. There’s a surprising number of women like that out there! So, I tailored The Hub exactly to them and since it’s a small business I’m able to adapt as I like.

Also, make the most of free marketing tools as much as you can – Instagram, free website building products. You don’t have to pay for everything straight away remember.

Finally, follow your intuition. I am very intuitive. If something doesn’t feel right, I won’t do it. I’m also not cut throat; I try to be kind and understanding, as I am with the hubbers who log in. I won’t pressure them to do a certain move; everyone is different so you’ve got to be supportive in that, as you do in business.

5. What are your aims with your business?

My aim is to keep growing the online group and to help as many women as possible. It’s very female-centric where 90% of the women have children so find it hard to fit exercise into their daily life. I just want to keep the community spirit alive and keep the company going so we help more and more women each year through the power of exercise.

6. What is your favourite place in the world?

My bed haha, I love resting and sleeping in when I’m not getting up early to teach – it makes it more precious when I can do it.

7. What is your ideal weekend?

It would be so simple, having no housework or washing to do and making sure we have lovely food in the fridge and just family times all together. Little things like that make me happy.

Membership to Jemmas Health Hub costs £29 per month. For more information visit www.jemmashealthhub.com