A Day In The Life Of… Lauren Hannaford

Ever wanted to step into somebody else’s shoes for the day and see what life is like as a magazine editor, a professional sportsperson or corporate high-flyer..? Well, SHESAID is giving you the closest thing to your very own Freaky Friday experience with our A Day In The Life Of… series.

RELATED: A Day In The Life Of… Annabelle Chauncy 

Name and role?

Lauren Hannaford, former elite gymnast turned health and fitness professional and national gymnastic coach.

Tell us about what you do?

Since I stopped competing in gymnastics professionally, I decided to turn to the health and fitness industry to build on my passion for fitness, gymnastics and working for myself. Training wise, I have created a series of workouts that can be done ‘anytime, anywhere’ that utilise core gymnastics skills for strength and conditioning. I have found that this approach works really well for my clients and it is hard to get bored because there are so many things that you can do! I also tour sometimes with groups such as The Wiggles and I am always on the go doing one project or another. That’s the great thing about the health and fitness industry, there are so many opportunities to work on new projects, its hard to get bored.

When did you discover your interest in this industry? What made you want to follow it into a career? 

I grew up being an elite gymnast so I was always fit and active. The strength and discipline that I learnt from gymnastics really helped me in other sports like athletics, swimming and diving as well. Competitive sport has always played a big role in my life. After I finished school I had always planned to become a personal trainer, it just happened a little later than I thought due to my training and coaching commitments from teaching babies their first forward roll, all the way up to national level competitive gymnasts. From the age of 16 I started to pick up a few coaching hours, which progressed to full time coaching position. After many years coaching it was time to get my personal training certificate so I could start progressing further into that field.

Your workdays are much more exciting than the average 9 to 5. What does a typical day for you involve?

6am: Wake up!! Its up and at it this morning to spend a bit of time with my boyfriend before he head off to work and then I get my day under way. I have two glasses of water first off which I believe is the most important way to start the day.

7am: Now its work out time. Making sure I start my day feeling fit and energised with a 60 minute interval bodyweight workout before my firs client of the day. A morning sweat session gets me motivated like nothing else.

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8:30am: It’s then onto checking all the important things in life like Instagram and Facebook. Work emails are in the mix as well as an IsoWhey® Post Workout shake. Diet and recovery are very important so that I can keep going at full speed all week! I follow this with a bowl of Morning Glory toasted muesli, some all natural Greek yoghurt, blueberries and some Hannaford homemade stewed plums and relax for a moment by the window before heading outside of my morning client.

9:30am: I have two back-to-back clients for the morning.

12:30pm: I take myself for a walk into Coogee with my notebook and laptop in tow for a lunch meeting at the Pavilion.

2:30pm: I whip out my laptop post meeting, ready to work on some blog posts, one of them being for my new site www.laurenhannaford.com.au. Then it is onto some online interviews and workout write ups.

4pm: Joined by my boyfriend, we wrap up the afternoon with a delicious Will & Co latte at The Pavilion before heading off to Maloney’s grocer in Coogee for dinner.

7pm: Dinner time, finishing up the day in the kitchen together is the best! Our favourite is the little lamb steaks with a side of greens, beets and baby potato salad.

8:30pm: Now it’s onto some tragic yet fantastically addictive American reality TV before sleep.

A Day In The Life Of… Sara Caverley

Ever wanted to step into somebody else’s shoes for the day and see what life is like as a magazine editor, a professional sportsperson or corporate high-flyer..? Well, SHESAID is giving you the closest thing to your very own Freaky Friday experience with our A Day In The Life Of… series.

Sara Caverley, director and designer of Sol Sana Shoes

6am: Having just gotten back from a design and sourcing trip in the USA and Europe I am struggling with major jetlag so I get up and head to a Pilates class. I find that getting the brain and body engaged early helps me stay focused throughout the day.

7am: As a designer deciding what you are going to wear is the last thing you want to think about. I am all about simplicity with a textual twist. Today’s outfit is a Helmut Lang skirt and oversized chunky knit with the Sol Sana Bobbie boot. I keep my beauty regime minimal with tinted moisturizer, a touch of mascara and a splash of Botanica by Balenciaga. Breakfast is essential for me, this morning it is a piece of toast as I’m running out the door.

8am: I need coffee stat. I swing by Bourke St Bakery to grab a long black, a favourite eatery and conveniently located right across the road from our office in Alexandria.

8:30am: When I get to the office the first thing I do is check my ccalender to see what meetings I have on and need to prepare for that day. I then respond to emails I have received over night, mainly from international suppliers, buyer and wholesalers. We work with distributors in Japan, New Zealand, Europe and the UK and distribute directly to Canada, USA, UK and Hong Kong. We also have showrooms in London, Vancouver, LA, NYC, Dallas and Atlanta, and operate 3rd party warehouses in Hong Kong, China, LA, New Jersey and Brussels.

9:30am: I call a meeting with the team. There are nine of us across design, production, logistics and sales. We have just wrapped up selling High Summer in Australia and New Zealand so now we need to make sure production is across all aspects before the purchase order is placed with our factories.

10:30am: Once our meeting wraps up our design team and I lock ourselves in our design room and start piecing together all the ideas and inspirations I noted on my trip. We are preparing for Northern Hemispheres Spring collection so it is vital we nut out all the trends, fabrications and silhouettes. I have a huge storyboard I am always updating with images to insure we are on track with the latest trends. I find music really helps me get in the zone when designing, so I blast some Kim Churchill and start developing sketches, mixing and matching fabric swatches, referencing the High Summer mood board which includes notes from runway shows and retails stores as well as street style photographs, all from my recent trip.

1pm: Myself and brand manager, Dannii, meet with our PR agency Tailor Maid Communications to discuss activity on the account and ideas to launch new season. We find this element really fun, as it is another outlet to explore creative ideas and executions. At the moment we are discussing talent for the High Summer campaign, which is really exciting!

2pm: I have a quick lunch at my desk, an oversized salad while scrolling through fashion news across a multiple online fashion portals. This provides me with up to the minute updates across the globe. I never miss a beat.

2:15pm: Our leather swatches have just arrived from the Sol Sana factory in India. I have been waiting with baited breath for these as each season we create our own customised colourways, so it can be quite nerve racking waiting to see the finished product. Alas, all is perfect!

2:30pm: Back to designing.

4:30pm: I have a phone meeting with our factory in China. We have recently developed a small bag line and need to make sure they are adhering to my designs to ensure product sample deadlines are met. I am very detail oriented so everything must be prefect!

5:30pm: I turn my focus to the Sol Sana X Free People exclusive line. This is a collaboration I have been doing for three seasons now and it works really well for the Sol Sana brand and customer. Free People offers beautiful bohemian clothing and accessories, if your not familiar with it you should definitely check out the website.

7:30pm: Dinner out is on the cards tonight. I know if I go home I will fall into a jetlag coma. Queenies in Surry Hills is the restaurant of choice. Great food and the margaritas are out of this world. Think I will have three in an attempt to stay awake!

10:30pm: Walk through the doors of my Erskineville apartment. Home finally. I make a cup of tea and jump into bead and its one last check of the emails for the day and then I’m out like a light.

A Day In The Life: Annabelle Chauncy

Last year as part of our Inspirational Women series we were lucky enough to get to speak to the beautiful Annabelle Chauncy. At 21, she and friend David Everett founded School for Life, a non-for-profit organisation focused on making a transformational difference to communities and delivering high quality education to those in rural Uganda.

RELATED: Inspirational Women: Annabelle Chauncy

Since then, the foundation has gone from strength to strength – Annabelle, along with her co-founder, have transformed a vision into an organisation that now employs more than 50 people, educates hundreds of children and adults and provides health-care and access to clean water for more than 1000 people. At the beginning of the year, Annabelle, as well as David, were also awarded an Order of Australia Medal – a recognition of outstanding achievement.

We recently caught up with Annabelle again to hear about all the fantastic work she gets up to when she spends time overseas.

Annabelle, when you are in Uganda your days are long and very busy! What does an average day for you involve?


Wake up at 5am and try desperately to get back to sleep, avoiding the temptation of checking my email, all the while knowing its 1pm in Australia and there’s no doubt lots of stuff that needs addressing!


Get up around and go for a run around the quieter parts of Kampala. Exercise is a really important part of my daily routine and it starts my day off with a positive mindset. Children and adults get overwhelmed with excitement when they see white people and love to greet you. Often when I run I am followed by excited kids who want to play and laugh at a “muzungu” (a non-pejorative term for a white person). In Uganda exercise isn’t too common, so children tend to find it quite comical and a little strange.


I have a shower and catch a motorbike or ‘boda boda’ to our office. This is the most common form of transport in Uganda. You hail a motorbike, jump on the back and pay the driver to take you where you need to go. At the office, we meet for the day and make a plan.


Usually we head out to school around 8am. There are people traveling on all sorts of different vehicles. Trucks are overloaded with products and anything goes in terms of driving, it’s every man for himself and you need to be pushy otherwise you simply won’t get let in. Road rules don’t really exist but somehow the chaos is organised.


The village in which our primary and vocational school is Katuuso and located is approximately 40kms west of Kampala. When we drive off the main road this is where rural life truly hits. People live in mud huts and have around 8 children per family. They have no electricity, no running water and live on subsistence farms they use to grow the food they eat. Family is everything in the village and this was part of what charmed me in Uganda.

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The Katuuso kids arrive at school at 8am for breakfast so they are well and truly into their lessons when we arrive. You can hear singing and classes happening from outside before you even enter the school. What catches your attention more than anything when you first drive in is the beautiful, colourful playground.

My day is spent assisting teachers in a fairly hands-off way and working on strategy, marketing and communications and help with all the initiatives created. We have a few amazing Western team members who oversee teams of local builders to construct new projects that are currently underway such as the teachers’ accommodation and the Early Childhood Development Centre, tailoring room and assembly hall.


Play time happens when the kids break for morning tea. They are served fruits, biscuits, milk, popcorn, biscuits or porridge and then race out into the sprawling playground.


The kids go back to lessons (which include additional subjects other than just the basic curriculum – literacy, numeracy, drama, art, music and life skills) until 12.30 when they are served a hot lunch, again with varied meals, beans, banana, rice, meat, vegetables all sourced from local farmers.


School runs until 3.30 and often the kids hang around as they don’t want to go home. They crave attention and affection, so love to hug, play games and spend time showing you their work or what they have learned that day.


We leave for Kampala to try to beat the afternoon peak hour traffic. By this time, town is buzzing with people selling goods at market and travelling home from work.


I arrive home anytime from 6pm onwards. There may or may not be electricity at night. If not, light lots of candles and have a shower. There is always something happening amongst our group of friends at night and we will often eat at local restaurants, see live music or just hang at home.

Bed time can be quite early though as its a big day, and there is plenty more fun in store for tomorrow!

Images via School For Life