The energy levels are fueled with excitement and happy vibes at Rana Fitness. I was greeted with a flood of smiling hellos from the women leaving Rana’s early Zumba class as I entered this secluded sanctuary at the Women’s Cultural Society in Khaldiya to meet owner, and group fitness instructor extraordinaire, Rana Alomani.
You would think that this fitness fiend has been busting her immaculate Zumba moves since childhood, but Rana was never a sporty kid. She explains, “I only began enjoying sports when I tried group fitness classes during my college days. I fell in love with the vibe of group activity, and building a sense of community. I was hooked! The music, the fun, it’s a different atmosphere from singular training, it’s alive.” Whether it’s qualifying for a fitness instructor certification, or taking up a culinary course (if she’s not teaching a class, she’s in the kitchen. When she’s not in the kitchen, she’s teaching a class—a foodie after our own hearts!) while she pursued an engineering degree, Rana stresses that passion should always be the driving force behind any endeavor one chooses to carry out. She adds, “I don’t think anyone really knows what they want to do fresh out of high school, except for maybe what their family wants. It takes time to find your passion.” Upon her return to Kuwait, she even took up a part time job as a fitness instructor at several private health clubs. Back then this came as a shock to many, but it was a mere annoyance to Rana, who embraced the challenge head on. “I’m known to speak my mind, and if anything, I was challenged by the stigma attached to being a Kuwaiti woman ‘working in this field’, and not at a proper institute like a bank.”
Furthermore, Rana was annoyed by profit driven fitness organizations that didn’t focus on providing a professional instructing environment. This led her to Rana Fitness, this quiet yet always lively, location amongst Khaldiya’s locale. Today, she focuses on her true calling: dancing and teaching. Not only so, she’s always travelling to fitness conventions to maintain and update her qualifications and learn new techniques, meet up with master trainers, and much more.
Rana looks positively towards the future. She states, “I’m so proud that today’s youth have embraced fitness. They are becoming instructors, and even opening up their own gyms and teaching. It’s a HUGE change from ten years ago.” Rana also mentors a group of young women towards becoming instructors themselves. In the long run, it is her ultimate goal to open the door for other young women to teach and take up a career in fitness. She concludes, “Whether they choose to do this as a hobby, part-time, or even as a full time position, it’s a beautiful and rewarding opportunity for me to inspire movement in others.”
How would your mother describe you in one word?
How would you describe your mother in one word?
Accepting! Both of my parents always welcomed the crazy ideas my siblings and I came up with. Their reactions might vary from happy, surprise, to worry, but they never stifled us.
What is the most insane question you’ve ever been asked?
Is your mother Kuwaiti?
What is the most spontaneous thing you’ve ever done?
Going to culinary school while I was still in my senior year in college.
What word in the English or Arabic language do you wish you had invented?
Where would you like to live? What is your dream retirement location?
St. George, Utah. I was there last summer and completely fell in love with it.
What is the first famous quote that comes to your mind?
“Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined” – Henry David Thoreau.
What animal best describes the kind of partner you’d be interested in?
What do you miss about your childhood?
If you could change your name, what would you change it to?
I always liked the name Dana for some reason.
How would you describe your handshake in one word?
It’s pretty normal!
What is the toughest part of your character?
Who is your favorite historical figure?
Churchill, as he had an amazing personality. He was not only a leader in politics, but he was also a philosopher and an artist. I also admire Gandhi from a humanitarian perspective.
What in the world do you least desire?
Greed and selfishness
What do you think is lacking in the world, which if there was more of would make the world a better place?
Kindness. People are not kind to one another anymore.
Why do you think most girls/guys like you?
I make them move and work out and be happy.
Finish this sentence: “Happiness is a thing called…”
Being content with yourself.
For more information, follow Rana on Instagram @ranafitness and log on to www.ranafit.com.