CAROL Martin was born in Kent. After leaving Fort Pitt Grammar School for Girls, she worked for the Kent County Council for almost ten years. Several jobs followed in quick succession, until she found her niche at the Kent Messenger Newspaper Group. “When I left school I wanted to be a journalist,” Carol explained. “It took virtually 15 years, but I got there.”
Although her main role was as the PA to the Chief Executive, she still found time to write the Arts and London Theatre columns for their weekly What’s On listings magazine. “I represented the paper at press nights and carried out interviews with the stars. Probably my biggest interview was with Sir Peter Hall, the most enjoyable was Michael Praed, who I’ve admired for many years, and the cuddliest was Michael Ball!”
Her debut novel, Obsessive Love, about the stalking of wildlife photographer, Taylor Bullen, was published by First Century in June 2001. Her second novel, Love me To Death, and her third, Playing With Lives, are available for publication. All of these books are in her maiden name of Fookes.
Carol became interested in diet and fitness after watching a television programme. “I got rather caught up with food and diet whilst watching Celebrity Fit Club. I wanted to know – was I eating the right foods, should I eat a more varied diet, should I eat carbohydrates at every meal. This led me to taking an Open University Course on Understanding Human Nutrition.”
Carol had changed to eating a low fat diet back in 1991 when she dieted with Rosemary Conley’s Inch Loss Plan. But recently her portion control had gone a little awry.
When Carol weighed herself at the beginning of January 2006 she discovered her weight had risen to her all time high – 9 st 10 lbs. “I am only 5 ft 1 in tall so any extra pounds, let alone stones, soon show.”
Now interested in becoming a franchisee, Carol’s goal was to attend the Rosemary Conley franchise presentation in May a stone lighter; she succeeded. “I bought the GI Jeans diet book, cooked several of the lovely recipes but, most of all, I increased my activity levels. Most of that stone went in one month when I exercised religiously five days out of seven. Since then I have lost more weight and have settled at just under 8 st —2 stones less than I was at the beginning of 2006.”
During the three years as a Rosemary Conley franchisee, Carol helped hundreds of people lose the weight. “The highlight was when I handed a lady her 6 stone certificate! Losing weight really changed her life for the better. To lose any amount of weight, whether it is pounds or stones, you have to have determination and focus; I admired everyone who achieved their goals.”
Carol closed her Surrey franchise in December 2009 and moved to Norfolk in June 2010. “I was really sad to leave my ladies; many of whom had been with me since I started. I enjoyed helping people lose weight and get themselves fit and healthy.”
Carol started her new keep fit business on 3rd August 2010 in her village hall. Classes are one hour of exercise and toning to music which is user friendly and suitable for any size, age or ability. Don’t worry if you are not keen on getting down on the floor for toning work, you can work with a chair and still tone! Unfortunately, she cannot accept children in her class either taking part or just watching – apologies.
Please bring a mat, towel and water with you to all classes. Wear comfortable clothing and trainers. Lycra is not essential!
Carol hopes to see you in her class soon.