The Fold Woman: Charlene Hutsebaut

The Fold Woman: Charlene Hutsebaut
November 15, 2013 The Fold

Name and Current Job

My name is Charlene Hutsebaut. I am a personal trainer, corporate speaker and brand ambassador.

Brief Bio about career background and how it has led you to your current job

I started being active at the age of three when my parents put me into ice skates and I haven’t looked back since! I now have twenty two years experience and over 15,000 hours of teaching people of all ages how to be fit and healthy. I started with the 4-18 age group at the well respected University of Manitoba Mini University and Sports Camps as well as guiding the Canadian National Rhythmic Gymnastics squad through their Strength and Conditioning Training. Once finished my degrees I taught in a wide variety of primary, intermediate and secondary schools while also personal training adults and teaching aerobics in local centres.

I soon moved to the award winning Kinsmen Reh-Fit Medical Fitness Centre working alongside cardiologists, nurses and lab staff helping cardiac patients recover and live full, healthy and active lives. I worked there full time as well as working at a women’s only fitness centre personal training and teaching groups.

In 2000 I moved to New Zealand where I continued to inspire people to be active at a local gym while working at an amazing restaurant learning about food and wine.

Moving to London brought new exciting challenges working full time in a private and exclusive one to one Personal Training boutique. I was fortunate to further my education by working daily with two nutrition colleagues from whom I learned a solid base about the value and power of food.

In my years in London I have added to my two University Degrees, a CSCS (Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist) from the NSCA in the USA and also a certification with the Canadian company Stott Pilates (Certified Stott Pilates Instructor). I also taught with Drummond Education teaching anatomy and fitness assessment courses to new Personal Trainers and currently lecture for DNAFit on their genetics testing Accreditation course.

I now run my own one to one Personal Training and Wellbeing Consultancy in London, personal training, speaking in corporate settings and acting as brand ambassador to big brands. I contributed to the book The De-Stress Diet, write for many magazines and am now starting my own book. You can see I love variety with my foundation being guiding the world to live as healthy as they can each day.

What is a typical day like for you?

A typical day starts with a 4:50am wake up call, coffee, breakfast and then out the door for my 6:30am client outside. Being Canadian I am always pleased by the weather in London as I can work with clients outside all year long. I then move on to the St. Pancras Spa gym or a pilates studio at Blackfriars for another set of clients and then home to the office. I usually work on admin, blog posts, writing articles, networking and personal training via skype, making new online products, revising for lectures or writing a new corporate presentation. If I don’t have an evening client I will work through to 6:00pm, making dinner in between and then stop for the day. Evenings are my quiet downtime when I can relax and restore.

The Fold Woman: Charlene Hutsebaut - Camelot Dress - designer dress

Charlene wears The Camelot dress in Black & White tweed

What advice would you give to a busy woman struggling to incorporate a fitness regime into her life?

Firstly, give yourself permission to take time for yourself. My most successful and rewarded female business clients are those who have decided that their health is one of their fundamentals of life. They come first and everything else follows. Secondly keep the pressure off yourself by understanding that even little bouts of time moving will be of benefit. The old “rule” of needing to go to a gym for at least an hour to get results has been thrown out the window! Make exercise part of your day. Walk, cycle or jog part of the way to work, incorporate a ten minute office workout into your day, take the stairs, stretch while you watch tv in the evening, walk with a friend on your lunch hour, stand tall and focus on your posture while you brush your teeth. Make movement incidental so the pressure of the formal workout is sometimes off. I could go on and on but lastly choose movement you enjoy. If you love it you will continue doing it, if you hate it you will not adhere long term.

A lot of your work is focused around nutrition. What would you say is one of the main problems for women here?

I feel women continue to obsess about food and I would love for them to stop this madness, let go of the guilt. They count calories and worry constantly about the content of what they are eating. The latter of course is important with good fats, protein, low glycaemic, wholesome, energy rich foods being the most important. Stop calorie counting right now! It is more important to get the quality of the food right. Stay away from processed and high sugar foods as often as possible. I like the 80/20 rule as do many of my nutrition colleagues. Your foundation is 80% healthy, the rest I leave to your discretion!

Where is your ideal getaway from the city?

I do love a beach type getaway. My partner and I enjoyed a lovely week in Portugal’s Algarve a few years ago, hiking on the cliffs, swimming in the ocean and eating wholesome food. My absolute favourite time away from London is my yearly trip to Manitoba in Canada. We spend time with family and also have a week to ourselves in a little 1920s timber cabin at Victoria Beach on Lake Winnipeg. The smell of the pine trees, birds singing and sand between my toes is total bliss!


Charlene wears The Cavendish dress in City Grey styled with The Albion belt in Black

What is typically inside your gym bag?

My favourite trainers for years have been Asics. I feel trainers are a personal preference though Asics have a strong well-made brand and products. I always keep a tub of lip gloss in my bag along with some Cow Shed or Body Shop hemp hand cream. Left over memories of trying to stay hydrated in cold Canadian winters. A bag of almonds/pistachios are a regular staple in my bag as I love to snack. I sometimes keep a small bag of Naturya hemp protein powder to add to a favourite smoothie post workout. My favourite all time workout clothing is Lululemon which has finally hit the UK with some London shops. I wear their clothes day after day, week after week and despite being washed continually the colours and stitching stay intact forever. And of course I keep a small pad lock and my ipod in my bag in case I want to drop into my own gym for a quick 20 minutes.

I think I know the answer to this one already, but which one if your favourite Fold Dress from the collection?

My favourite dress to look at and on was the Cavendish dress City Grey. It is so sleek and professional looking. Typically my mother thought I looked better in another….the Camelot dress Black and White Tweed. This is one I usually wouldn’t have chosen for myself but once on I really enjoyed the feel and look. Perhaps it was the comfort of the A-line skirt. I am still intrigued as to how you have gotten that A-line underneath!

Could you tell us a little about your Corporate Wellness training?

I have done this over the years in different settings. One session was in a large gymnasium in a Canadian hospital with over a hundred women. They were all laying down on the floor while I guided them through a relaxation visualization technique. The calm, quiet energy in the room was quite inspiring. In London I work with employees in corporate settings to inspire them to make choices to care for and nurture themselves realistically within their busy lives. I love working with groups where I can get a healthy message to as many people as possible. I find there is a certain buzz to group teaching and activities which really floats my boat. Topics such as “Fun food tips to eat healthy at work”, “Stay off the floor! Easy & effective office workouts”, “Bright Beautiful Balance – Achieving balance between work & home” and “The weight room is for women too – Strong is the new skinny!” have proven very popular.


Charlene wears Le Marais Capsule in black

You can find out more about Charlene via her website

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