Dedicated to the art of movement, this month is all about the journey to body awareness, and what it really means to devote energy to wellness, exercise, and self-love in 2019.
Kirsty Godso’s Instagram bio reads ‘Nike Master Trainer|| Energy Dealer.’ Admittedly, it’s difficult to deduce one’s life and career to a single sentence bio, let alone five words. But, if you happen to be one of her 172K devout followers, you know these five words are pretty damn accurate considering she’s the proud owner of a signature move called the ‘hot sauce burpee.’ That, and she’s without a doubt the downtown set’s go-to trainer.
What you won’t get from those five words, however, is Godso’s innate sense of style, her ties to the fashion industry’s elite, and the beauty products that help her achieve that covetable ‘glowing from within’ type of skin. From our conversation with Godso, we learned this and so much more—including what movement means in her life, and the importance of setting personal goals.
If you don’t know, now you know.
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What does movement mean to you?
Movement, for me, has always been a sanctuary. I can be going through anything—the best, the worst—and movement will always recalibrate me. It’s a meeting of the mind and the body in a place that helps focus on and give perspective and structure to what’s truly important.
You’re an early bird. What gets you moving in the morning?
Cafe Leon Dore—my favorite coffee spot! That, and the excitement about a new day ahead full of opportunity. Cold showers are also a favorite morning ritual to really zap you into GO mode.
What do you love most about what you do?
The energy exchange with people. It truly is a reciprocal wave of energy between myself and the people I engage with, whether that’s in a class, a 1:1, meetings, Nike projects, or through my own personal brands. There are so many unexpected findings on a daily basis and new learnings you get just by listening to people. The sneakers are also a big favorite!
Your personal favorite workout?
I truly love a good strength and conditioning session. I’m known mostly for HIIT workouts, but when it’s my time in the gym, I really like to work at things that challenge me a lot and require me to completely dial into what I’m doing at the time. I don’t want to be anywhere else other than the moment I’m in—even if it’s fighting for breath while I kick my own ass.
Your signature move?
So often trainers say that the objective of working out is to feel mentally well and physically strong—that the surface level effects are just an added bonus. There is value to that sentiment, but I’m calling bullshit. Whether or not we admit it, working out—in most cases—is to achieve a certain ideal body type. As someone who works with bodies of all shape and size, what are your thoughts?
I think it’s both. Even if it’s with an aesthetic goal and focus in mind that pulls you into exercise, you cannot deny there is a mental aspect that keeps you there. Summer, a wedding, a photo shoot, etc. are all just temporary moments in life. What you train yourself to do in the gym is to prepare yourself for everything else in the world, and that’s not just about your body showing up—your mind, personality, and energy must show up as well. You could have the best body in the world but if that’s it, you’re not going to engage people or yourself for long.
Do you think we can ever truly move away from the ideal body type? What needs to happen?
I think we need to be better at understanding that we’re not robots or prototypes and that you should be working towards your best body for YOU. Comparison will destroy you if you let it. If you want to be a victim to your excuses that’s a sad way to live your life. Show up for yourself, do your best, get over it. Fail, then try again. You will only get what you give so give yourself the best shot you have!
That said, where do body positivity and fitness come together? Where do they clash?
Fitness undeniably changes our mental state. You can totally turn your day around by taking even 10-20 minutes to move. They can clash when we compare or compete too much or get too obsessed and triple dose on everything. A little competition can be great and fuel you even more, but don’t get caught up in someone else’s journey—MYOB (mind your own burpees). Fitness should always be a celebration of our body and our health not a dick contest with the person next to you.
How do you encourage body positivity with your clients?
I teach them to be aware of their internal dialogue so even when they’re not with me they can start using some ‘hand brakes’ when they start to use self-limiting conversation. We can pollute ourselves really quickly with negative internal dialogue so learning to combat and condition against that is a big part of our training.
What do you love most about yourself?
My genuine enthusiasm for people and my friends. Anyone that knows me knows I live for my people!
In a society moving towards this overarching idea of ‘wellness,’ what’s the future of fitness?
The future of fitness is not looking for short-term wins and fads. It’s about finding ways of living that are respectful to your body and the planet. To be honest, we should probably workout less, sleep more, and eat even more thoughtfully. It’s understanding your unique makeup and working with that, not against that. One-on-one training is becoming ever more popular again, and I think gyms will become more like centers where you can go in to not only train but recalibrate and have everything in a one-stop destination. Think of gyms being like a doctor’s office you go to before you even get sick.
Fashion feels intrinsically woven with movement at the moment. What’s your go-to gym style? When you’re not working out?
My favorite gym style is a pair of Nike Pro training shorts with a men’s cut-off T-shirt, black sports bra, and some Nike training shoes. I love a quarter-zip windbreaker over the top or an Aimé Leon Dore hoodie. I go into the gym to work. You’ll never really see me training in just a sports bra. I prefer a loose top, some braids, and some good socks.
When I’m not working out, you’ll see my tomboy nature still shine through in my style. I love men’s T-shirts and hoodies and will probably always have one tied around my waist, even in summer. I love jeans and shorts, and I always wear four necklaces and little hoop earrings. I’m a sneakerhead and would rather have a sneaker closet than a wedding ring. My favorite style is a men’s track pant and a [tank top] on my chill days, and on the rare occasion that I go out, I’ll throw on my favorite Proenza Schouler pony hair boots or my old Celine heels.
Your favorite designers of the moment?
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Eyes on the swoosh ✔️🖤 Excited to share one of my favorite podcast interviews ever with the amazing @emilyabbate on @hurdlepodcast 🙏🏼✨ Take an hour in your day to listen to us chat about my most personal and difficult decisions that have shaped my journey from NZ to NY and around the world with Nike. Most hurdles are there to lift you higher and we’d love to hear yours. Link in bio and some top line notes in my story 🙏🏼⚡️✨ also catch us live on 11/17 at the @girlbossrally with @smartwater 💕 #letsgo #pyropodcast
The most fashionable workout? (Does that even exist?!)
The most fashionable workout is showing up for yourself every day. #JUSTDOIT. But truly, the most fashionable thing we could do right now is to try and improve our recovery game.
Before- and post-workout beauty routine—any essential products or routines? I don’t have a pre-workout beauty routine other than hydrating. Post-workout—and in general—my favorite products are:
- Bare Minerals Complexion Rescue Tinted Hydrating Gel Cream
- Bare Minerals Complete Coverage Serum Concealer
- Tata Harper Beautifying Face Oil
- Augustinus Bader PPC Cellular Renewal Cream
- Algenist Genius Cleanser
The best fuel for a workout?
Pre-workout, I like to have half a scoop of Made Of Whey Protein Isolate with water so I have a little fuel in my system.