Member of the Month – September – Mel Carrington & Mirja Bouchard

“Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much” – Helen Keller.

 When times are difficult and we struggle with our mental and physical health, being part of a community of like minded people who we can turn to for motivation and inspiration has remarkable benefits.

This month we are celebrating two Her Spirit community members who have not only found a fitter and healthier lifestyle through the Her Spirit, but confidence and determination to overcome their personal challenges.

Mel Carrington “Watching Mel grow and flourish over the last 12 months has been truly inspiring” said Her Spirit Co-Founder Mel Berry.

Mel loves Open Water Swimming and joined in the Her Spirit Learn to Freestyle taster sessions at Spring Lake, Nottingham. Over the last year her confidence in the open water has grown as she has reached her goals and is a regular swimmer at the Her Spirit swim sessions.

We asked Mel what Her Spirit means to her…

“It (Her Spirit) has been and still is a beacon of light in what was strange and sometimes dark times. Through exercise classes available through the app and the swim sessions at spring lakes I’ve found a great set of friends and a support network of women that have all helped me to grow in self confidence and belief in myself. Encouraging me to take part in events I would never have dreamed of doing a year ago. This has all contributed to me finding me again.”

“Having hit 50 during lockdown I felt I had lost a bit of my spark/myself which was strange as age has never been an issue. I nearly believed that I had to accept it was just the way it is has a lot of people were saying “it’s your age, it’s to be expected” Thank goodness I still had my determination not to accept this and I had the courage to book that introductory lesson for cold water swimming , I’ve never looked back it made my smile so much wider! Her Spirit has given me so much, health advice , physical challenges and emotional support and advice. I’m forever telling people about how great Her Spirit is, as it has made the world of difference to me and I hope I can continue to share the beacon of Her Spirit with many other women to encourage them to be the best version of themselves.

Simply put “Her Spirit helped me find my spirit again” ❤️

Mirja Bouchard – Mirja is all the way from Belgium and our first international member of the month.

Mirja is a mum of three and enjoys cycling and hiking. She recently completed the Her Spirit Give Me 5 Running programme. We asked Mirja how she became a member of Her Spirit and what being part of the community means to her.

“How did I, a Finn living in Belgium, become a member of Her Spirit?

In March 2020, I read my favourite breakfast TV host Louise Minchin’s Dare to Tri which led me to the Her Spirit podcasts which in turn made me discover Her Spirit. I had a look at the website and wow: I found the idea of a community of women, of all ages and levels, encouraging each other on a path to better health simply fantastic! I immediately wrote to Mel & Holly, asking if they accept members from abroad and luckily they wholeheartedly welcomed me :-).

I have always been physically quite active but Her Spirit has given my sporting activities the structure and the regularity I needed. Currently I do cycling with Michelle, I run with Donna, I have just started doing yoga with Chloe… Strength training is next on my list. The only problem with Her Spirit is actually finding time for a rest day 🤪 as there is so much to do!

I’m not into competitions (and yet the wonderful cycling coach Michelle’s encouragement made me sign up for the Zwift Racing Team.. how on earth did that happen 🙂 but challenges work for me and Her Spirit has plenty. They motivate me to move in so many different ways and there is always an interesting challenge available – I love the variety of them as this keeps things interesting.

What I also value in Her Spirit is the very holistic approach to women’s health and the active, positive, supportive and fun community – reading others‘ posts with action-packed photos always puts a smile on my face 😀 and is yet another source of inspiration.

For me, Her Spirit has also been a real lifesaver during quite a challenging year with our autistic son – it has helped me take care of myself, provided me with the necessary me-time and quite often lifted me up when I have been low.

And, last but not least, Her Spirit has given me the appetite to try new things – I am seriously considering signing up for a duathlon and who knows, maybe one day for a triathlon (but first I need to find a solution to start swimming in Belgium)!

I am so grateful to have found Her Spirit and I only hope that I can join some local events from time to time and meet other members.

Thanks to our amazing coaches who make a real difference.”

Join Mel and Mirja in the Her Spirit Community today – sign up at and let’s get fitter, stronger and healthier, together.