DUBAI: “I was not the mother I wanted to be, I was not the wife I wanted to be and maybe I was a little depressed,” Iraqi fitness coach Rachael Sacerdoti, founder of online coaching platform It’s SO Simple, said as she opened up about what prompted her to launch a women-dedicated workout app.
The platform, which she launched last year during the COVID-19 pandemic and is available in Saudi Arabia, is based on her own journey and struggles with her fitness after giving birth to three children.
“The most important thing for me was to change my mindset because I am a very ‘all or nothing’ person. So, for me it's like three hours of exercise or nothing,” she said. “That’s not sustainable. We are mothers. We are busy. We’ve got careers. We’ve got children. We need something that can fit into our lives.”
When the pandemic hit, Sacerdoti’s friends started asking her for advice to help them reach their fitness goals, especially with the gyms being shut and social distancing measures in place.
“That’s where this business was born,” she said, recalling that it all began with a WhatsApp group where she would virtually train friends and help keep them accountable.
“Before I knew it, there were 12 women in the group. All my friends heard about it. Everyone wanted to join, and I just did it. I didn’t charge for it because it was my pleasure to do it.”
And that’s how It’s SO Simple was born. As part of the program, participants have access to easy-to-make recipes that the whole family can enjoy and to make it as straightforward as possible, Sacerdoti provides a grocery shopping list with items that are available in stores in the Middle East.
Some of the online exercises include routines that the whole family can try — an aspect that the coach was keen to focus on considering this is first and foremost a platform for busy mothers.
The platform features full-body workouts that include exercises for the core, legs, shoulders, back and more in both video and illustration formats.
After working for luxury label Christian Dior, Sacerdoti says she found her true passion with the launch of the app.
“I grew up in fashion. My parents did the franchises for a lot of the big lifestyle brands such as Gucci, Fendi, Givenchy, Celine, and all of these brands. So, that’s the world I grew up in and I thought that that was my passion, but I was so wrong because now I found my passion,” she said.