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“Wellness to me is feeling good in my body,” says Heather C. White, founder of Boston’s TRILLFIT. “It's feeling connected to those around me. It's feeling seen and feeling supported.”
It was a lack of that kind of support that led to her starting TRILLFIT in 2005. At the time, she was struck by the lack of diversity in the studios and gyms she’d been trying. She didn’t feel like she belonged and stopped going entirely.
For many people, that would be the end of the story. But Heather had a feeling other women of color were experiencing something similar. “That's how TRILLFIT was born.”
I started TRILLFIT because I was on my own fitness journey, frequenting boutique fitness studios to big luxury gyms, and was constantly confronted with the same reality: there was an overwhelming lack of diversity, I didn't feel that I belonged, and so I stopped going. I realized there might be other women of color feeling similarly, and I decided to try to create an experience to speak to them. That's how TRILLFIT was born.
We've shown that there's a different way to do things. When we talk about Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion—one of the narratives is that it's expensive, it doesn't make financial sense, and often that's why people disregard those initiatives. For us, we made that our platform, our grounding statement. We drew a line in the sand, and we made a promise that we uphold and continue to reinforce. That's why our business has evolved into a movement. People have a reason to choose TRILLFIT, people have transformed at TRILLFIT, and the spark that they get here—affects them long after they've left. Of course, we're focused on our P&L (and we're crazy up YoY), but we've shown that you don't have to compromise your values or your mission to do that. We've shown that success can look, feel, and be different. I'm a first-time entrepreneur from a family of immigrants, and I turned down an offer for a luxury space (with free rent) to be in a neighborhood that served the community I wanted to focus on. A lot of people thought that was nuts—I credit our location and our commitment to the community as the reason we're successful.
Expect to sweat, to have fun, and to meet people that truly see you. Our classes span from Cardio Dance and Boxing to Sculpt and Restore—and they are meant to complement and build upon each other.
We're expanding our class schedule and staff, and we're launching our new community wellness program in April. You can expect to see our commitment to the community grow in a radical and actionable way.
It takes a lot of intentionality, and to be honest, I'm not the best at it. But when I do prioritize it, I love massages and spending time with my people. I work out a ton—and because my schedule is so crazy, I really focus on making sure I have time to get in the studio—and that acts as a stress reliever for me.
Wellness, to me, is feeling good in my body. It's feeling connected to those around me. It's feeling seen and feeling supported. Start by looking at yourself in the mirror and deciding that you deserve to feel good. Then make a list of the things that serve your mental, physical, and spiritual self—things that will make you feel good—and pick one. Then choose a day a time to do it. See how you feel after and repeat often :)
Working on perfecting your at-home workout routine? Trying to take your yoga practice to the living room? Want to find a new mat and support local yoga studios from home? We interviewed SACRED yoga founder, Erica Simone, to get the inside scoop on the brand, wellness, and why SACRED yoga mats stand out among the rest.
SACRED is pulling the (yoga) mat out from under the industry. Because a basic search will likely lead many to believe that all yogis are young, physically fit, devastatingly good-looking, and well, white. Trust us, yoga doesn’t care if you look good in tight pants or if your outfit is cute. Yoga doesn’t care where you come from, what you look like, or how much money you make. Yoga isn’t about being flexible or being able to hold fancy poses. And you don’t need to take a ton of time out of your day—let alone be a skilled practitioner—to reap its amazing benefits.
SACRED’s mission is to create beautiful quality products, empower everybody to practice yoga, and to feel damn good about it. Our yoga mats are made with extreme grip, central alignment, eco-friendly natural rubber, reversible sides, and high vibration design. They’re extra long and wide, firm and comfortable, super durable, and very easy to clean.
Our PRO line is our most popular yoga mat because it offers all the best features you could want from a yoga mat, including being extra long and wide (26.7" x 72") and with thicker material (5mm). The CORE line is the same mat, buts a little smaller and thinner (24" x 70" / 3mm thick).
I designed the central logo, which was a symbol I 'channeled' a few years ago in one of my automatic drawing meditations. I often get geometric downloads that have some sort of cosmic connection and this one particularly evokes 11 elements (which can be read on the website), but essentially love and the all-seeing Universal mind.
Wellness is that sweet spot where health and happiness hold hands. It's making positive decisions and taking daily steps to giving your mind, body, and soul a warm hug in whatever you can. Whether it's focusing on keeping a healthy diet, exercising, practicing meditation, or even volunteering in your local community—whatever you need to do to keep your total being balanced.
I believe wellness is cultivated by self-love. The more you care for yourself and take all the steps in your daily life to self-nurture, the better you will feel and be able to show up in society for others. One of the major sources of disease is stress, which we can easily reduce by practicing a variety of wellness methods, including with yoga and meditation. By truly honoring your practices and deeming them sacred in whichever way you choose, you are activating a stronger connection with your inner self and therefore cultivating a greater sense of wellness.
How do you personally practice wellness? (taking time for yourself, etc.)
These days I take daily walks on the beach, hiking in nature, yoga, meditation, eating very healthy, not drinking, being creative, making art, and watching documentaries or taking online courses.
SACRED yoga mats provide a safe space to practice, physically and ethereally. Our mats are dual-sided and made with advanced grip materials, giving yogis great stability. All our yoga mats come with a central line, greatly helping with form and balance. Our PRO line is extra long and wide, providing ample space to practice. The central design is a cosmic activation, bringing loving and harmonious energy to your practice. SACRED mats are designed to offer yogis a full experience, where they can connect with themselves and practice seamlessly, not having to worry about slipping and sliding or having any stress whatsoever over their mats.
What trends and evolutions in the wellness space should we be aware of?
People becoming nicer and more loving :)
We work with yoga-related charities around the world, helping provide yoga mats to underserved communities.
Soon we will be releasing a fancy travel mat... I can't divulge too much, but stay tuned. It's going to be amazing!
Want to order one? Visit Sacredyogashop.com.
Ready to take it for a spin? Check out virtual classes on Mindbody and start flowing!