Lucy Mills is on a quest, to create the ideal wellness retreat at Your Ideal Fit, to help motivate and inspire everyone. Lucy truly is a force of nature, her passion for ballet and dance began at an early age, which lead to her love of health and fitness – as well as a casually studying Mathematics at university! Whatever Lucy sets her mind to she’ll achieve it, and with that kind of positive attitude, she’ll be sure to help you achieve your fitness goals too.
Lucy’s ethos at Your Ideal Fit is to encourage everyone to be more active, and set realistic yet achievable goals to become fitter and healthier. We caught up with Lucy to find out about her next adventures – and she’s also offering one of you a chance to WIN a place at one of her amazing Pilates retreats. Exciting! To find out how, follow us over on Instagram… so stay tuned!
Tell us a little bit about your background and experience?
You could say my journey started when I was three. Like so many other little girls, I started ballet class and pretended I was the most graceful Princess alive. Thankfully I stuck at it and after graduating from a performing arts college in London, started professional work in musical theatre. With 25 years of advanced dance training under my belt, I gained qualifications with STOTT Pilates, Xtend Barre and TRX. All have a very serious technique focus, which resonated with my many years honing dance skills. I began my teaching under the mentorship of one of the UK’s Lead STOTT Pilates Instructor Trainers and later took positions in some of London’s elite private fitness clubs, including KX Chelsea, Harbour Club Chelsea and Mortimer House, Fitzrovia.
You created the lifestyle brand “Your Ideal Fit” – what purpose does it serve?
I know it’s a cliché, but when it comes to fitness one size does not fit all. We’re all highly complex individuals with different goals, fears, needs and body image. However, within that chaos, only three things affect how we feel and what we look like (for the majority). Number one is food, number two is exercise and number three is the silent, most overlooked element; stress. All three elements are deeply interconnected and great results come from a balance of the three.
My expertise is exercise; getting the foundation of movement correct is essential. Pilates is often considered a stretching or passive exercise but anyone persevering with a good instructor soon understands, Pilates can be as intense as required. Professional ballet dancers use it to rehabilitate, so it’s not a walk in the park at advanced levels.
I’m passionate about flying the flag for “real” Pilates and truly believe it’s a discipline everyone can integrate weekly, regardless of how much and what other types of exercise they do.
Your Ideal Fit is a personalised service in the fitness sector. I’ve learned my craft over decades, invested in expert training and offer highly customised solutions to time poor professionals, new mothers, international visitors and everyone in between.
What’s your approach and why is Your Ideal Fit unique?
“Your Ideal Fit” means assisting someone to find a personal fitness solution – something ideal to them, creating a level of fitness for the time and stage of life. A prenatal mother’s ideal program might be three home visits a week, when her toddler is asleep. Of course this is completely different to the ideal fitness program for a busy entrepreneur. All people are different, all people are at different stages and my role is to advance individual goals, at an ideal pace. Which makes my service the ideal fit (cute pun intended)!
What was the inspiration for a retreat?
The retreat evolved from observing clients over years and my own hectic lifestyle. I see huge results with my clients because they engage someone with specific expertise. It’s easy to understand because experts often make life easier, including mundane things. Ocado is an “expert” weekly shopper, Uber is an “expert” personal driver and Expedia is an “expert” hotel finder. In our hyper personalised and customised lives, we’re accessing “experts” for everything.
So the retreat principle is similar, only with a different focus. Instead of finding an expert to help us go faster, push harder or win bigger, I reversed it. I invited experts who can guide how to nourish better, relax easier and sleep deeper.
I focus on technique, to exercise safer and hold results longer. We slow down the pace and add educational workshops so everyone will leave refreshed but truly understanding why. It’s designed to be thought provoking and induce subtle “aha” moments.
Where is the retreat and what’s special about it?
The location is only 2 hours by car or train from central London, so it’s really easy access without flights and travel queues. The quiet, rural property in Norfolk, has its own mineral water aquifer, expansive gardens and historic renovated stone buildings. The luxury bedroom suites are peaceful and the perfect sanctuary at the end of each day.
All gourmet, plant-based meals will be prepared and served in the converted barn, adjacent to the sun filled Pilates studio. We’ve included country walks, daily morning guided meditations, immersive sound baths and lots of little secret experiences to really delight everyone.
Ali Waldegrave, the foodie expert, is crafting three meals a day and hosting a nutrition workshop centred around the topic of “What is Healthy Eating?.” Never short of a fascinating story, Ali draws on her global experiences and is in high demand. Private jet chef, 5 star African safari host, tiger tracker and so much more – Ali has literally packed enough in her career for five lifetimes.
Sudhir Daya, operates a wellness clinic just off Harley Street, London and has more certifications than his walls can hold. Physiotherapist, acupuncturist, transformational life coach, clinical hypnotherapist to name but a few. Sudhir focuses on the mind-body interaction and is leading a workshop focussing on the mental aspect of health – “When The Body Says No: Stress and Dis-ease.”
Paul Johnson, responsible for morning meditations and evening sound sessions, never fails to impress. With over thirty years experience he’s a retreat and structured course veteran. Paul is also a hugely talented professional musician often found performing at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre and the RSC. All retreat attendees receive an iron clad guarantee to be amazed with his musical skills.
I will lead two Pilates classes a day. The morning session is focused on how the breath links to movement. We awaken the body slowly with exercises focused on mobility and stretching. The afternoon class builds on principles developed in the morning to explore strengthening and conditioning. All abilities will be catered for, with modifications and advancements to suit everyone.
I will also be hosting a physical wellness workshop where we review the five basic principles underlying the Pilates discipline.
Our mission is to provide each and every attendee five days away from their busy lives. Their sole focus will be themselves and their wellbeing; the physical, the nutritional, the mental. We want them to feel cared for, nourished, comfortable and relaxed, so they return home feeling energised, empowered and the ideal version of themselves.
For full details and information on how to book your place at the Your Ideal Fit Pilates Retreat, visit: