To celebrate the release of her new book, Eat Good Food, we hit up the 53-year-old to chat through her daily self-care rituals, love for strength training and why she believes consistency is key.
Do you have a food philosophy that you live by?
I have a holistic approach to wellness, which is my Active Living philosophy and the daily practice of Move Nourish Believe.
But, I do believe that what you eat is one of the most important things to ‘get right’ when it comes to living well, because if you don't fuel yourself with nutritious ingredients that actually nourish you, then how can you possibly expect your body to function at its best?
Even though I’m committed to eating healthy food, I absolutely refuse to compromise on taste. And I know that a lot of people are under the impression that good food has to be boring, tasteless and difficult to prepare so I wrote this book to show that it doesn’t have to be that way.
My philosophy on food is simple…EAT GOOD FOOD! Because when you eat good food you’ll find that you have more energy to work out, you’ll feel more positive, happier and have a mind and body that is more capable to do all of the things that you want to achieve in life.
What does your average day on a plate look like?
When I wake, the first thing I do is have a big glass of water with lemon juice and a dash of cayenne pepper to hydrate and kick-start my metabolism.
I'm hungry, so the next stop is a smoothie to get me started and give me the energy I need for my morning workout. There are so many great smoothies but at the moment I'm loving the Super Green Smoothie (from Eat Good Food).
I always take all of my food to work and have homemade snacks and fruit stashed in my drawer or in the fridge, so food wise my days are pretty consistent.
Around 10:30am I'm ready to eat again so it's either a bowl of oats, a homemade frittata or the classic avocado on toast.
I have one black coffee a day, always before lunch.
Lunch is often leftovers from the night before or a salad with a lean protein such as turkey, chicken or fish.
Depending on what time I get to eat my lunch, I'm usually ready for a snack around 3pm. My snacks are either a couple of bliss balls or a small handful of nuts or a piece of fruit. I love kombucha so I usually have one of those during the day too.
Dinner has to be quick and easy as my husband Bill and I are ready to eat right after our evening walk with our dog, Roger. It's often veggies stir fried in coconut oil or a big salad with chicken or salmon (which is my favourite!)
Dessert is non-negotiable for me and I have it every night. It can be a couple of squares of dark chocolate, some yoghurt and granola or some leftover healthy slice from the weekend.
To finish the day, I always have a cup of herbal tea and take a glass of lavender water to bed with me to sip on before I go to sleep.
Cheat meal of choice?
I don't believe in cheat meals as such, because when you know how to make ‘delicious’ healthy food you start to crave those meals instead.
Because it's winter I tend to crave more comfort foods, and I'm really enjoying the protein curry from Eat Good Food. It kind of feels like a cheat meal because it's creamy and warming, but it's full of nutritious ingredients so when you eat it you have no reason to feel guilty! I’m also loving the Speedy coconut pea and herb soup … it’s amazing and so easy to make!
The one thing that I DO tend to over-indulge in is chocolate. So, my kitchen is always stocked with homemade bliss-balls, chocolate fudge and really good quality 85% dark chocolate so that I know I can have it and not be loading myself up with all of the nasties that come with overly processed commercial alternatives.
Talk us through your fitness approach…
I move every day. I practice yoga 3-4 times a week, strength train twice a week, go hiking or beach walking on the weekend and walk twice a day with Roger and Bill. Sometimes I’ll mix it up and go to F45, Pilates or a Spin Class if I feel like something different or I’m traveling and can’t stick to my regular routine.
I feel the same about my workouts as I do about food, it's the things that you do each day consistently that make the difference. You don't need to run a marathon or do super intense workouts for hours to get results. Just move your body daily – be consistent and you'll see and most importantly FEEL the difference.
Fave pre and post workout snacks?
Pre-workout is usually a smoothie. At the moment it’s my Super Green Smoothie from Eat Good Food to give me plenty of energy.
Post workout there has to be some protein to help refuel and recover, so either my Recovery Smoothie or a couple of my Green Goddess Mini Frittata’s (both from Eat Good Food) work well for me.
If the weather’s really hot or my workout has been extra ‘sweaty’ I LOVE a fresh young coconut afterwards – and always drink plenty of water throughout.
Have there been any food fads you've loved or hated? Why?
Anything too extreme. I'm not a fan of calorie counting or deprivation so I don't like trends or diets that are too restrictive. What I do love (and what is trending at the moment) are all of the fantastic gut friendly foods. Things like kombucha, kimchee, kefir and sauerkraut which I regularly incorporate into my diet to promote better absorption of nutrients, a flat tummy and of course glowing skin.
You're always on the go, how do you sustain your healthy habits?
I try to keep it fairly simple and have the mindset of doing the best that I can where ever I can.
It's actually not that difficult when you simply don’t get so caught up in the detail. For me as long as I do SOME exercise every day then I’m happy - and that can be a sweaty workout for an hour with a trainer or some sit-ups and push-ups in my hotel room! It’s the same with food, I just make the healthiest choice available and drink plenty of water.
Wherever I am, I start the day with meditation and I find a way to move, eat healthy and be positive no matter where I am or what I'm doing.
What do you do in your downtime to take the pressure off?
I think the secret is to not let the pressure build in the first place. So, I do yoga, get outside and walk (and talk) twice a day with Roger and Bill, practice meditation daily and spend as much time as possible with family and friends. I do all of these things BEFORE I feel stressed and I think that is the key to a balanced and healthy life.
Because I manage my health and wellness on a daily basis, it minimises thenumbert of times that I feel overwhelmed or overly pressured. It allows me to enjoy what I do no matter how busy it can get at times and eliminates the need to escape to relax or unwind – I even meditate in my office sometimes!
Any predictions for the next big trends in activewear?
I'll give you the inside scoop … Women are looking for activewear that shapes their bodies … and we have it in our Active Core Stability Tights. They're the Shapewear of activewear and they’re seriously amazing! They’re engineered to flatten your tummy, streamline your silhouette and re-define your curves without any unsightly ‘dig-ins’ Trust me, once you try them on, you won’t want to wear anything else!
What do you know now that you wish you'd known 10 years ago?
I wish I’d known how important strength training was for your overall health and wellbeing – I’ve been doing it now for a little over 8 years and wish I’d started sooner. It feels so great to have a stronger more capable body and I’m pretty sure I’ll be doing it for the rest of my life!