Frequently Asked Questions
Why do you blog on Instagram and how did you start?
I started Instagram in 2013, when I was recovering from Chronic Fatigue. It became a way I could document my journey of getting back into exercise and back to full health.
My passion is to spread the message of healthy and active living. Instagram gives me a medium to share what I have learnt as an exercise professional, elite athlete, and someone recovering from chronic fatigue. It also gives me a way to learn through other peoples healthy life experiences, I am motivated everyday by my followers. Seeing them sharing their workouts and healthy food ideas, encouraging and supporting others and spreading positive vibes.
I want to create a happy, healthy and motivating space. If someone can take something positive away from my blog, it makes me feel awesome!
What is your best advice for someone starting their active lifestyle journey?
Becoming fit, healthy and active is a lifestyle change, not just a quick fix that happens overnight. It is about what you do day in day out. A daily routine that becomes a habit.
The one piece of advice that has stuck with me always is to be in the moment and enjoy the journey. Because active living is just that, a continuous journey. We need to recognise and appreciate our daily achievements. It is the things that we accomplish each day that slowly build up and guide us towards our goals.
Have you always been fit, healthy and happy?
I am very lucky to have parents that raised me in a very health focused environment. My dad put me into sport very early (I started gymnastics when I was 3) and my mum is a vegetarian, so meals full of fresh vegetables and fruit were always on the table.
Although throughout the majority of my upbringing I have been healthy and happy, just like anyone else I have had my rough patches. I went through a period where I did not have a healthy outlook towards food (I was very skinny for a while, my focus was on losing weight and I was severely restricting what I was eating). It was a horrible time but I learnt from it. The thing that turned me around was realising that not only was I unhappy but I was making the people around me unhappy.
My focus now is to really appreciate my body and its abilities. It's like 'what goes around, comes around'. If you love and look after you and your body it will love you in return.
How often do you work out?
I do something active everyday.
I am a big fan of mixing up the type of exercise and fitness I do, so from week to week my exercise routine changes alot. I usually start my day with a stretch or yoga and a few bodyweight exercise's (situps, squats etc), usually between 15-30min depending on how much time I have. I do an intense workout like a strength session or sprints 3-4 times a week and then also include days where I do something different like tennis, bike riding, basketball, walking with a friend or going to a local pilates or airyoga class. All up, I aim to move my body for an hour each day.
I make sure I incorporate a rest day during the week, where I might only stretch and do a walk. If I feel run down or overtrained I make sure I take a day off. Its all about listening to your body.
Why do you work out?
I work out because I love the way I feel when I am active. I love feeling strong and fit. Exercise gives me an energy boost, it improves my mood (especially if I have had a bad day) and it keeps my body healthy.
While I was sick (with chronic fatigue), I was unable to exercise for a long time. It made me realise how much being active effects my quality of life. You wont find me any happier than when I am outside running, jumping and playing!
What do you eat? Are you on a diet?
I do not follow any specific diet.
I have experimented with a few different ways of eating but what works best for me is a varied and balanced approach to food. This includes LOTS of fruit and vegetables, fish, eggs, grains (including breads and pasta), legumes, nuts, dairy and meat. I also believe it is totally ok to enjoy those 'not so healthy' foods (my vice is icecream!). Those hearty meals or cheeky treats are good for the soul! But remember it is about moderation.
My meals usually consist of majority vegetables (full of vitamins and minerals), a portion of carbs (to fuel my muscles and brain) and protein (to build a strong body and keep me full). I choose mostly vegetarian options (a big influence from my mum, who is fully vegetarian) but I do eat meat when I feel like it.
It is true, you are what you eat! Your meals are essentially the building blocks for every cell in your body. I WANT to look and feel healthy, fresh, and vibrant so thats the way I eat.
To see my philosophies about food click here.
Do you ever binge, over-eat, under-eat, cut calories or count calories?
I believe all of the above creates a negative energy towards food. Food is one of the most important factors that effects your health and should be seen as a way to look after and nourish your body. It is so important to build a healthy relationship between you and what you eat.
I never want to feel like I am depriving myself. I focus on all the good things I can give my body. The more healthy and nutritious food you give it, the less room there is for the bad stuff.
Are you a personal trainer?
Yes (My qualification is a Bachelor in Exercise and Sport Science). I am also a fully qualified Exercise Physiologist (Rehabilitation using exercise), yoga instructor, gymnastics and athletics coach and National Elite pole vault coach.
How often do you weigh yourself?
I haven't used scales in a very long time, I couldn't even tell you how much I weigh!
I prefer to go by the way I feel rather than a number.
How tall are you?
How do you get so flexible?
Flexibility is all about consistency. I stretch everyday. I stretch in the morning for 15-30min (sometimes also in the evening) and before and after I exercise. If you are looking to improve your flexibility, the more you stretch the quicker you will see improvements.
How do you stretch?
I use a combination of stretches I have learnt from gymnastics and athletics and combine this with yoga. In the morning I do a few sun salutations (a sequence in yoga) to warm up my body, then I stretch my legs and hips and do splits, then finish off with shoulders and backbends.
How do you stay motivated?
I make a little list of tasks and goals I want to achieve each day. The night before, I usually go through in my mind what my day will look like and where I can fit things in.
Big goals are great, but sometimes they can seem overwhelming. Breaking it up into tasks you can do each day makes things so much more achievable, and that is really motivating. I love getting to the end of a day and looking back at all the things I have done.
The most important thing to remember is that constant positive efforts are never wasted, they will build up slowly and you will get that end goal. Just enjoy the ride :)