Talking Fitness With Jenny

  1. Tell us about yourself?

I am 24, living in London and have a passion for all things health and fitness! I have always considered myself quite health conscious, but my journey really began in October 2016 when I realised I had let things slip after a year working in the City. I started to create a fitness Instagram account to hold myself accountable and to motivate myself. Now over a year down the line I consider Instagram blogging a hobby and fitness is a big part of my life. I have had a few health setbacks along the way and sometimes struggled mentally, but I have found there is nothing that gives me that endorphin kick to boost my mood quite like a great sweat session! So fitness to me is about so much more than aesthetics, as it has helped me feel stronger both physically and mentally.

  1. Where is the best place you have travelled to and why?

Tough question but I think going to the Maldives last year was a once in a lifetime experience. The place was quite literally picture perfect – from the crystal clear blue waters to the beautiful white sand beaches. The highlight for me has to be my diving experience there, where I got to swim alongside turtles and saw manta rays…felt like I was on a scene from Blue Planet!

  1. How did you first get into fitness?

I was always quite active through school as I used to compete in dry slope ski racing. But I first really got into fitness just over two years ago when I found myself lacking any health and fitness routine since moving back to London after University. I had started a graduate scheme and got lazy with cooking and my gym sessions were sporadic. It was actually following other fitness bloggers on Instagram that first motivated me to do the same and take control of my health again. I initially started by going to classes, which was a great way to check out the London fitness scene and also a good way to ease myself in without having to create my own workout in the gym. The next step was getting more confident in the weights room, I did this by getting some PT sessions to help me master the basics and ensure my form was correct and now I am at the stage where I feel I could confidently design my own workout.

  1. What benefits do you see, mentally and physically from working out and eating healthy?

Obviously living a healthy lifestyle will lead to physical benefits, when I first got more into fitness I saw my body composition change, and this definitely made me feel more confident in myself and spurred me on to keep it that way. However these physical changes won’t come overnight and you definitely have to be patient to see the results. For me I actually found the mental benefits more rewarding. I often found that after a workout my mood would do a 180 and I would feel so energised. The hardest bit is getting to the gym in the first place, but I have never once regretted a workout! Getting fitter and seeing my strength improve is definitely empowering and why I love working out. The biggest lesson I have learnt though is that exercise alone is not enough, to get the best results you need to be eating well too. Combining a healthier diet along with exercise has made me feel more confident and energised!

  1. What is your favourite type of workout to do and why?

My favourite type of workout is weight training, as I find it empowering and get a buzz from feeling strong as I progress.

  1. What impact do you think social media is having on the way that people see their bodies?

I think there are both positive and negative effects from social media. While there has been a movement towards body positivity and the whole ‘strong not skinny’ mantra, there is definitely the danger that we aim for unattainable goals because of being surrounded by ‘perfect’ bodies on social media! It is all too easy to look at other girls we see on social media and strive to look more like them, but you can’t compare your own body with a fitness blogger who is a personal trainer for a living!

  1. What do you eat in a typical day?

I am quite a creature of habit so I tend to eat the same few meals on repeat! My favourite way to start the day is with a warming bowl of porridge or overnight oats in summer. I often add protein powder or egg whites (you can’t taste them I promise) to my oats to get my protein in. Lunch is often something I cooked in batch on Sunday, like a homemade stir-fry or curry with lots of veggies and chicken or tofu. While at lunch I try to eat more coloured veggies, dinner is usually greens with something simple like rice or sweet potato and chicken (again) or chicken sausages…can you tell I like chicken. I have a massive sweet tooth so I always follow dinner with something sweet, but I go for the healthier option of total Greek yogurt (high in protein) with berries and nut butter and maybe a square of dark chocolate too!

  1. If you could go back and give yourself some advice, what would it be and why?

One of my biggest weaknesses is often putting things off through fear of failure, but you have to remind yourself everyone once started off where you are now too. This can apply to taking that leap to get yourself in the weights room but to life in general too!

  1. A lot of people now are working out at home with the help of YouTube and social media. What do you prefer, working out at home or in the gym and why?

I sometimes work out at home, but this is purely out of convenience or if I am short on time as I prefer to get out the house and go to the gym. As for me when I am working out I find it hard to motivate myself if the atmosphere isn’t right, and often in the gym they have music on and also just having other people around me working out keeps me going too!

  1. Did you know that you always wanted a career in the health and fitness industry?

I definitely never saw this as anything more than a hobby, but as my passion for it has grown I realised I wanted to turn this into something more.

  1. How do you stay motivated?

Staying motivated can be hard, but I find the best way is surrounding yourself with other like minded individuals who enjoy working out too and then you can do it together. I have met some great girls through Instagram and having them really keeps me motivated. I find Instagram really motivating too, as there have often been days where I don’t feel like it, but then I see some of favourite accounts posting about their workout and that can be all it takes to get me off the sofa! My other go to when I can’t find that motivation is signing myself up to a class, nothing like being surrounded by 40 other people and being shouted at by the instructor to get you going!

  1. For all of the newbies out there what advice would you give them?

If you are new to fitness then I would really recommend getting a few PT sessions before starting out. It will give you so much more confidence going forward to hit the gym floor on your own. I appreciate PT sessions are not cheap so if this isn’t an option there are lots of great videos on YouTube and Instagram, so check this out before attempting certain exercise and it will give you inspiration for a workout routine too. Another great way to ease yourself in is going to a class, these are fun and also once you have booked it you won’t back out! In terms of healthy eating preparation is key! On my graduate scheme I was in a typical 9-5 and if I hadn’t prepped my meals it was all too easy to reach for the more convenient options. So get into the routine of prepping some lunches and dinner on a Sunday, and then you are set up for the week ahead. Also another tip is be realistic with your schedule and get to know whether you are a morning or evening person when it comes to the gym. If you have the luxury of choice always schedule your workout for the time of day that you feel best. But if you know that come 7pm when you get home from work you won’t feel in the mood, then try to set your alarm 45 minutes earlier and get that workout done for the day. Also don’t beat yourself up if you can’t fit that workout in, just getting your steps up can really make a difference, so if there is no time for the gym, get outside for a quick walk on your lunch break, or walk to the tube in the morning instead of the bus…every little helps!

  1. What is your go to snack?

My favourite sweet snack would be total Greek yogurt with berries and nut butter or honey, I do also love Livia’s Kitchen biccy bombs and Deliciously Ella’s snack bars. For a savoury snack I like carrot sticks and hummus, but I am currently addicted to any form of roasted corn or broad beans, places like Wholefoods and planet organic often sell these, Love Corn is my favourite brand and they are now in Sainsbury’s!

  1. If people want to use you as a personal trainer what do they need to know?

I am currently still completing my qualification, so will release further details when I am finished. But as of this week I am going to be getting a weekly workout video up on my Instagram page LondonGirlFitness – I will be releasing it on Sunday evenings each week. There are already some on my page to give you inspiration, but this will be a weekly upload to help give people more ideas for their workouts.

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