Popular social media channels (Instagram) would have you believe that everyone these days is a green smoothie loving, raw food eating, yoga practising, wellness guru. Selfies in your best workout gear means you worked out, right?
I'm going to share with you some dirty little secrets of mine that make me a real personal as well as a personal trainer (yes you can be both!).
1. I don't exercise every day. Sometimes there is just no time/I'm physically unable/I just don't feel like it. And that's totally OK with me. To try and exercise everyday would be unrealistic for me and I would be setting myself up for failure. Instead of constantly feeling guilty, I exercise when I can and am always happy with my efforts (even if it is only once per week). Instead of trying to get in a full workout everyday, throughout the week I try to be as active as possible by walking instead of driving, taking the stairs, or doing some stretches throughout the day.
2. I eat carbs. A lot. I crave carbs more than any other food group, and I always give my body what it wants. With a demanding lifestyle, I require lots of energy and I get this mainly from grains. I have complex carbs when I can but am certainly not afraid of bread, rice, pasta or potatoes. I combine this with a wide range of other foods which gives me the balanced diet that suits my individual needs.
3. I drink coffee. I recently tried to quit coffee as I personally didn't like the way it was affecting my hormones, but my sudden quitting ended very badly. When you suddenly try to quit something you have every day, your body goes into shock and suffers huge cravings. I ended up not only drinking coffee again, but drinking more than I did before I tried to quit! Having learnt my lesson, I now try to cut down coffee my coffee intake only, having no more than one a day when I can. Eventually this will become once every couple of days, to once a week, to only on special occasions. For now, I try not to feel guilty for drinking coffee and enjoy my guilty pleasure.
4. I don't go to the gym (ever). I am being 100% serious when I say I never go to the gym. I love exercising and they way it makes me feel, but I like the convenience of working out at home, or the scenery of working out in nature. We have some wonderful parks and facilities that make excellent outdoor gyms these days, and there really is so much you can do with your body alone. I also love to mix things up with fun classes such as pole fitness , gymnastics, aerials, yoga, dance and all sorts of other fun styles (hence my reason for starting Move Eat Heal).
5. I never count calories and I don't diet. I eat whatever I want to and as much as I need to. It has taken me time and practice to listen to my body and understand what it needs and wants, and this understanding is invaluable. I appreciate my body for all it does for me, and in turn I try to treat it as best as I can. My body knows what it wants - no diet, no rules, or nobody else can tell me what or how much I need to eat. I never deprive myself of anything I am craving, but most of the time I crave nutritious wholefoods because I know it is what my body wants to eat.
6. I am not happy/full of energy/self-loving all the time. There is a great movement at the moment towards self-love, positivity, and gratitude. We have discovered our capacity for true happiness and we are understanding that it is something we are all capable of. As wonderful as this may be, we need to remember it is still ok to have a bad day. Some days you simply feel down, lethargic, or negative, and that is fine. I try to find something good in every day and every experience, but I am realistic and know that some days are better than others. The most important thing to remember is not to give up when things get hard. One bad day is not a reason to throw away everything you have worked so hard for.