Founders / Interviews

Balancing the Grind with Adala Bolto, Founder of ZADI Training

Adala Bolto is the founder of ZADI Training, an Australian female fitness studio providing high-intensity interval training (HIIT) and strength training programs.

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1) To kick things off, could you tell us a little about your career background and current role?

I have a strong background in sales and retail management Over the past 15 years I have been able to apply the skills learnt into a wide range of fitness industry roles from trainer and instructor to gym manager and owner & operator.

My entire fitness career has been in the female specific fitness space. I am currently the founder & CEO of ZADI Training, obviously since its inception just over two and a half years ago.

I am obsessed with staying up to date with the fitness industry as my team and I ramp up franchising activities with a huge goal to see 100+ studios open here in Australia over the next few years.

International goals are also on the horizon for ZADI. I created it to fill a huge gap in the Market for bespoke female training with an extremely unique member experience.

2) What does a day in the life look like for you? Can you take us through a recent workday?

I can say with certainty that in a day in the life of me, there is never a dull moment! A workday starts earlyish (no I am not the, rise at 5am entrepreneur) but I am known to ‘get shit done’ regardless.

Coffee comes first, so the ritual of going to my favourite local café is a must. If I’m feeling generous, which I often am, I drive my beautiful 16 and 15 year old daughters to school.

I always stop over at one of our studios for a brief visit. This is one of my favourite times of the day, it is very important to have regular chat to our members and my vibrant team, it reinforces my purpose as a leader in the industry and our company’s purpose.

There’s no better feeling than the feeling I get when I see sweaty, happy smiles training hard and feeling the positive vibes we are creating daily at our studios!

I spend most of the day at our office and in meetings. I love walking home and lucky enough to have gorgeous Sydney views along the way. Yes, I do fit in a daily sweat session, but I prefer the PM sessions to end my day on a high.

3) Does your current role allow for flexible or remote working? If so, how does that fit into your life and routine?

I do have plenty of flexibility in my role and could do most of it remotely. My role requires me to stay connected and to check in with all of our stakeholders which I still prefer to do face to face although, we have all adapted to being able to connect remotely more than ever during COVID.

The flexibility allows me to be more efficient, I create my routine to work for me, my kids and my business. It’s the blessing of being your own boss, but you can only do this if you have immense discipline, dedication and focus.

4) What does work-life balance mean to you and how do you work to achieve that goal?

For me achieving a life work balance is a long term goal and one of the main reasons I took the huge risks which I needed to take to start my own business and brand. ZADI has evolved to reflect so much of what I love, what I am passionate about and what I stand for.

I am very blessed to have had the courage and conviction to start, and now there is no looking back. Life has become waking up to do what I am truly passionate about and doing the things I love daily so, it does not feel like work, rather it becomes a lifestyle – and that is work life balance to me.

Of course there is the obvious things I do to balance my life with work because that is only one element to a fulfilling life, family, health and community is equally important.

This is where it gets tricky but, having some absolute ‘Must Do’ with my kids, family and community and for my health and wellbeing ensures that I don’t become too consumed with the business. Quality time with my girls, regular short breaks, a healthy lifestyle and of course – not skipping workouts are some of the ‘Must Do’s.

It’s the daily work life balance that I find unrealistic and unsustainable. Business can be unpredictable due to daily variables that come with managing teams, customers’ expectations and stakeholders so, I am realistic and prepared to reschedule personal plans to attend to business matters.

5) In the past 12 months, have you started or stopped any routines or habits to change your life?

I promised myself that I wouldn’t reference ‘Covid’ in this interview, haha. But the answer is where do I begin! I have definitely formed new habits in the past 12 months due to covid.

Although here in NSW the lockdown was brief, I have become accustomed to ZOOM meeting and webinars – both hosting and attending.

I would say over 50% of my face to face interaction are now online with only positive outcomes such as extra time to be productive Vs commuting and less parking fines.

6) Do you have any favourite books, podcasts or newsletters that you’d like to recommend?

For me, this changes so frequently and I am very open to a wide variety of podcasts and reading material.

The most recent podcasts I have been listening to are in the human psychology space which is fascinating and enlightening. At the end of the day, understanding people is understanding life.

7) If you could read an interview about work-life balance by anyone, who would that be?

It would be an interview with any regular person really. Someone who like myself, has decided to step up and have a go at turning their goals and dreams into a reality with conviction and discipline to execute from zero.

This is the period in any human’s life where they would be pushed to extreme discomforts and challenges where ‘work-life balance’ is given the ultimate test. For me, it would be like reliving my first 2 years in business from its inception.

8) Do you have any last thoughts on work, life or balance that you’d like to share with our readers?

In work and in life we have the opportunity to make choices. Only you can control the way you choose to respond to situations and people around you.

You also have a choice in what you say yes or no to manage expectations wisely. The best part of making some wrong choices is understanding why you did, then take the lessons learnt without ego, we are all flawed and imperfect individuals and this is how we learn.

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About Author

Hey there! I'm Hao, the Editor-in-Chief at Balance the Grind. We’re on a mission to showcase healthy work-life balance through interesting stories from people all over the world, in different careers and lifestyles.