|Personal Trainer Showcase|
|Name: Heather Downey|
|Stats: 5’3” / 120 lbs|
|Location: Los Angeles, USA|
What inspired you to become a personal trainer, and what do you love about it?
I began my career as a personal trainer right out of high school. I was amazed at the results I personally achieved from lifting weights and wanted to help others transform their bodies as well. I love teaching my clients how to live a healthy lifestyle, achieve their physical goals, and equally as important, increase their self -esteem.
What is your training philosophy?
Something is better than nothing. Nobody has the exact same energy levels every single day. I believe it is very important to listen to one’s body and recognize that just showing up counts. 20 minutes of exercise is better than no exercise.
Do you have a particular area of fitness you prefer? (If so why?)
For me, resistance training has always been my preference. I do other things, like hot yoga as well, because I like to have balance in all areas of my life. But as far as sculpting my physique and creating a symmetrical body that is both fit and feminine, resistance training is by far my favorite!
What has been your favorite moment as a fitness model?
My absolute favorite moment as a fitness model was the very first time I ever saw my first magazine cover! I was at the airport headed home for my 10 year class reunion buying a bottle of water and looked up and saw myself on the cover of Muscle and Fitness magazine. It was such a complete surprise and I was so proud. It was incredibly exciting to be able to share this accomplishment with my high school friends.
How has being a mother affected your approach to training?
Becoming a mother has actually inspired me to train even harder and to set an example for my kids that being healthy is a lifestyle. From going to the gym, to cooking nutritious foods, I know I am instilling these values in them from a very early age.
What advice do you have for expectant mothers who are concerned about staying in shape?
Listen to your body. Don’t push yourself too hard, and get as much rest as possible. Get outside, breathe the fresh air, and take walks. Eat as healthy as possible and move as much as you can on days you have extra energy. Allow yourself the freedom to adapt your routine and change things according to how you feel each day. It is important to do something, however, every day. This could be a pre-natal yoga class, lifting some light free weights, stretching for 20 minutes in your living room, or a walk around the neighborhood. Just keep moving, in some way, shape or form.
Nutrition seems like a minefield these days for those who are pregnant. Do you have any nutrition tips or ingredients that you swear by?
I believe drinking water is underrated. Staying hydrated, especially during pregnancy is crucial. As far as nutrition during pregnancy goes, I have always sworn by the ‘Super Foods’. These are typically the brightest, most nutritionally dense and vitamin full foods around. There are lots of great books available with lists and recipes with these foods, but a few examples of super foods are: blueberries, broccoli, oranges, pumpkin, salmon, spinach, tomatoes, etc. These foods not only gave me energy and made me feel great, but also gave me great satisfaction knowing I was giving my unborn baby the best nutrients possible for healthy development.
How do you keep your clients motivated?
I keep my clients motivated by constantly changing up their workouts, encouraging them with positive reinforcement, and reminding them of their goals, during our workouts, and throughout the week.
And, how do you keep yourself motivated?
I motivate myself also by changing things up with my own personal workouts. I also find inspiration from working out occasionally with other trainers whom I admire. I love someone to push me now and again, even if that means trying something new. After being in the business for nearly 30 years, it’s fun to find exercises that may be just slightly different than what I may be currently doing. It’s about keeping things exciting. And ever changing.
Finally, what is your favorite cheat food?
Pizza, hands down. I have pizza every Friday night.