When did health and fitness become important to you and why?
I always thought that I was conscious about health and fitness, but it dawned on me about a year and a half ago that while I was fit and healthy for the most part, I was focused on being in ‘shape’ and ‘thin’. When my 40th birthday was looming I decided that I wanted to get healthy. REALLY healthy. I quit alcohol, caffeine and meat and now only eat fish, drink green tea and rarely drink alcohol. I feel better now at 41 than I did when I was 21!
How can busy people include fitness in their everyday lives?
Fitness and health is a lifestyle and dedication. It’s not a quick fix or a fad. Also, it’s not one-size-fits-all; what works for someone else won't work for you, because of how things affect YOUR body. I always tell people they need to start to be their own nutritionist, because no one else can tell you how you feel. So trial and error is key.
People need to do what works with their schedule, but it’s likely they will need to prepare their meals on a Sunday or in the evenings for the next day and get up a little bit earlier. Like I say, it’s a dedication. Nothing worth having is easy.
What’s your most memorable fitness challenge?
Probably the First Nation Home Race for Sport Relief a few years ago. Four teams of eight people each from England, Ireland, Scotland or Wales all raced on bikes, rowed and ran to be the first nation home. We relayed a 1,000 mile round-trip - I fell off my bike three times. Hell on earth!
What are your top tips to stay motivated?
1. Patience is key. Most people get frustrated when they don't see results ASAP and give up. It takes time to see changes - at least six weeks, so having the foresight to know that keeps people motivated.
2. Don’t beat yourself up if you fall off the wagon; it’s okay. It takes at least a week for a day of dodgy eating to have an effect, so just start again tomorrow and it won't ever show!
3. Excuses are just a lie to yourself. People whine that they are too old or not strong enough. Well I’m stronger and fitter now at 41 than I was at 21. My mum is 65 and is fit as a fiddle. She could out-bench press me!
What does your daily diet consist of?
Mainly clean, natural foods; lots of vegetables, fish, eggs, nuts, quinoa, brown rice, oatcakes and some fruit.
The notion that organic food is labelled annoys me SO much. It’s the processed rubbish that should be labelled as ‘Non-Nutritious Food’ - organic food is just FOOD! The cleaner you eat, the better shape you will be in. Simple.
Tell me about your experience with Udo’s Choice Ultimate Oil Blend.
My Mum had been using Ultimate Oil Blend for over 13 years when she started my sister and me on it. I use it in and on everything! I swear by its healing properties and the effects it has on my joints and skin. It's not rocket science, it’s just essential fatty acids that our cells need to be at their best. And it is undamaged, unprocessed and unheated. Again; simple!
What beauty rules do you live by?
I think it’s important to take care of the inside AND the outside. Each morning I have a mug of warm water and lemon to start the engine that is the digestive system. You wouldn't wake up to a bucket of boiling water or ice cold water to the face, would you? Well nor should you shock your digestive system. Then I fill three litre bottles of water with filtered tap water and drink it throughout the day.
I always take my make up off at night no matter how tired (or sporadically drunk) I am. I have regular facials, including CACI facials, with my gal Vanda Serrador. I love my sleep so sometimes I siesta during the day. And I truly believe life is too short for friends who suck your energy, so learn to say NO and learn to be kind to yourself. Enjoying life is key, otherwise what's the point?
If you had just 5 minutes to get ready, what would your speedy beauty routine consist of?
- Moisturiser with SPF - I use Charlotte Tilbury Light Wonder to minimise pores and reduce wrinkles
- And I’d grab a snack, like a Tupperware box of veggies, to go with me
Interview by Jenni Retourné from Style with Substance.