Zana Morris is the name you need to know for all things fitness and nutrition. Founder and owner of the exclusive Library Gyms in London, and co-author of The High Fat Diet she will transform your body and kick start a healthy, maintainable diet.
Based in Notting Hill with outlets also on Harley Street and in Barnes, Zana has built up a loyal following through her 20 years of personal training. This combined with her expertise in nutrition, Zana and her team will not only change your body for the better, but also change the way you look at food.
Training sessions are high intensity and unlike other gyms, The Library has more of a personal training approach for all its members. Zana proves if you are dedicated results are guaranteed at The Library Gym and quickly, in 12 days to be precise.
Their 12 Day Programme will have you working out for just 20 minutes a day, making it convenient to fit into your everyday schedule. Every minute counts though, and along with a supervised nutritional plan, on average an 8lbs loss is to be expected (but in a lot of cases it can be double that). The low carbohydrate, low sugar nutritional plan works to lower insulin levels, making the body burn its existing fat store.
We couldn’t recommend The Library Gym highly enough – so much more than a gym, it is a private members’ club so when you’re not working out and giving your all to the HIIT sessions, you can relax with fellow gym buddies in the beautiful surroundings.
How did you start your career in fitness?
I have always loved the health and fitness industry, my mother was very interested in nutrition and health, so I grew up with healthy foods and vitamin supplements! I trained as a nutritionist when I was 17, and shortly after as a yoga instructor. I moved into the direction of personal training, specifically HIT, in my mid-twenties, after being introduced to it in a gym in Dublin, and again when travelling in the US.
Tell us about The Library Gym…
I opened my first small studio on Harley St in 2006, with the focus on high quality, result orientated, HIT and nutrition. Before long, I was attracting a very large number of highly successful, time poor clients, who also were no longer enamoured with the traditional warehouse style gym. They were looking for a more relaxed, personal approach. In addition, we realised our clients were in and out so quickly (within 15 minutes); they were never getting a chance to meet each other.
One of these clients, Karen Welman, a designer and co-founder of the design agency Pearlfisher, offered her expertise, and together we looked to create a space that would not only offer all the benefits of the gym, but would also offer a beautiful, relaxed, private members style club.
Tell us the science behind the high intensity exercise routines…
HIT is very different to regular longer training sessions. Longer sessions can cause your body to eat into more muscle tissue than your body is capable of recovering, meaning, you can lose the very tissue that not only give you your shape but also drives your metabolism (a lb of muscle can burn between 50-100 calories a day). HIT on the other hand, causes a massive disturbance in the muscle fibres, so much so, it can drive your metabolism up for anything from 2 – 48 hours after a session! It also causes the release of hormones, such as the Growth Hormone, that targets belly fat, and also drives protein into the muscle – resulting in rapid toning.
What are the advantages to this work out?
High Intensity Training in general (which would include sprinting/interval training etc) is great for fitness, muscle tone, strength and fat burning.
The Library Gym High Intensity workout has the added benefits of being based on focused, full range, weight training for a complete body work out. We can sculpt, and strengthen specific areas, work on posture, elongate and ensure strength through full range of the muscle movement, helping ensure an even, balanced, strength throughout the body, which can dramatically reduce risk of issues or injuries later in life!
Do you have any favorite work out routines?
Definitely a high intensity leg workout – with a trainer…! Without any moment to pause or let yourself off the hook, it’s incredibly tough but very fast (done in about 6 minutes!) and you really feel it working only your legs from every angle, but also amazing on the glutes and even your abs!
How do you start your day?
I’m afraid I love a good cup of coffee, followed by a short, one minute of high intensity squats or lunges – to get my circulation going! Followed by a few minutes of relaxation/meditation. I love those few minutes of peace before I launch into what will normally be a non-stop day!
Do you have any top motivational tips? How do you get motivated?
My best motivation is actually my team! There is nothing better than having someone to answer to on those days you really don’t feel like training, and you only ever regret the training session you didn’t do!
What’s new for 2016?
We have a very exciting move and complete transformation of our Little Library on Harley St, our first and smallest studio. So watch this space…!