Melissa Tucker: “Anything is possible!”
I recently got a chance to chat with a top-notch fit pro – Melissa Tucker. Melissa Tucker is a professional global fitness athlete and renowned health coach. I asked her about all of it – putting her on the spot at times with a few tricky, overarching questions but she definitely came through! If you are looking for some sound advice on how to get your at-home program started and keep it going even on the go then check out this Melissa Tucker interview below!
Can you tell us how you got started?
“I grew up athletic. I played national volleyball and at a pretty high level of basketball but when it came time for university I chose to study fashion and marketing. I ended up working and living overseas in China for about three years producing fashion shows and lost connection with fitness.
I kind of describe it as I was “skinny fat.” Like yes, I fit the model size but I had no energy, I didn’t feel like myself, I didn’t sleep right, [and] I didn’t eat right.
I finished that chapter and moved back to Toronto and worked in advertising for a little bit.
But in that time frame, I just wanted to get my wellness back. I just wanted my energy back so I started working out in the evenings at a boot camp and then I actually started teaching the boot camp and it became really popular…
So long story short I went and got my certification for one-on-one [training] and I was training two clients in the morning, then I’d go to the office and put my suit on, and then I’d come from the office in the evenings to teach a boot camp and then I just kind of thought,
I like my Nikes better than my high heels…
Like this is my calling and that was in 2000! So I switched over and I have transitioned into the fitness industry full time…”
Fill us in on your at-home fitness philosophy?
“I mean the great thing about it [at-home fitness] is that wherever you go, you can do something to raise your heart rate, to challenge your muscles and that’s what working out is!
So yes, we can have a fancy gym and that’s great to kind of motivate and change the scenery, but for a lot of my corporate clients who do a lot of traveling it’s really important for me to coach them to make a “workout happen.”
I actually have a training app – it’s YourPPT, it’s your portable personal trainer and it basically uses your body weight. It can use any kind of elevated step or if you want to do triceps dips or step-ups for the glutes.
That’s kind of how I approach at-home fitness as a sense of first of all schedule yourself in!
You don’t have to be going to a gym for an appointment – make your appointment with you, at home. That could be with a DVD, that could be [with] podcasts like this that can talk you through your work out…”
Basically the key thing is schedule it in, put it in your day timer and do it!
What other ways can we stay motivated to work out at home with all the distractions?
“I think what you have just said is key – get rid of the distractions. Make it a scheduled appointment to focus on what people refer to as “willpower.” Like how do you stay so strong? How do you renew that willpower?
Basically, it’s making a decision that you have already made into an automated action. Then you will have more willpower to focus on going to the next level. What I mean by that is, say it’s day one of week one and you have decided you want to start an at-home workout program.
You schedule yourself in! You have decided, so you do it!
Three days a week, you do something physical and the other three days you decide you are going to walk outside now the weather is nice or run or jog, whatever it is you have decided to do and commit to that for the week!
Maybe tag in with some friends – energy is contagious so I would say definitely surround yourself with like-minded people who have like-minded goals is key.
Surround yourself with people who motivate you! Have a walk or jog with a friend who also has similar goals so you can have that camaraderie and accountability to an outside source!
Also on your website, a great thing is to read motivational quotes. Before I go to bed, I will read a motivational scripture before because that’s going to make me sleep better, finishing my day with a good thought and if you finish your day with a good thought, the likelihood of waking up with a great thought is that much better!” [Editor’s Note: I’m seriously going to try this! Could always use more good vibes!]
What’s your all-time favorite on-the-go exercise?
“Sometimes our most favorite [exercise] isn’t the most effective and if you’re going to say I want to get an effective work outdone in a limited amount of time – especially if you are on the go – chances are time might be a restraint…
I would definitely say something that can incorporate your whole body. So let’s go for burpees, squat with a jump, and a push-up.
You are going to go down into a squat and then you’re going to place your hands on the floor. Jump out into your burpee but do a push-up before you get back up and jump.
You are getting a push-up, a squat, and you are getting your cardiovascular system going with that jump and your core is working… That’s going to cover it!”
What’s your Fitlicious program?
“So Fitlicious is basically anything that is deliciously fit. It goes into all the nutrition and food. A lot of times people think that eating healthy is boring – lettuce leaves and no flavor – and that’s exactly why I went to culinary school was to debunk that…
Food in its natural form can be absolutely delicious. Fitlicious is about making food fun, it’s about expanding your options as opposed to restricting your options.
A lot of the time people use the word “diet.” I like to use the terms “menu planning” or “meal planning” just because it’s more positive… So that’s what Fitlicious is about [making nutrition fun, delicious and positive].”
What is your #1 nutrition tip for everybody out there?
Lets go “one a day” that is the key. Take one thing per day that you are going to accomplish with your nutrition. So if I were to say one thing, I would probably say drink more water.
“Most people are dehydrated and we don’t know the difference between feeling hungry, tired, and thirsty.
The order that we are actually experiencing it is: #1 we are usually dehydrated but we think we are hungry so we will eat something, #2 we are actually fatigued or tired which we think we are hungry so we eat something, and #3 in fact we could be hungry so we eat even more of something.
If you drink your water, you’re going to digest your food better, your skin is going to be better, just your whole operating body and fitness level are going to be better. So I would say drink more water would be my nutrition tip.”
Is there one parting piece of advice you’d like to add?
I would like to say that everyone has an athlete within them and I encourage you to dig inside and just unleash that athlete within yourself because when you set your mind to something, anything is possible!
Once again I want to thank Melissa Tucker for taking the time to chat about her fitness, nutrition, and lifestyle philosophy! Great, insightful chat.
To get more from Melissa Tucker check out her website at www.MelissaTucker.com.
To get the full, uncut interview (which contains a lot more great advice) you can get the full audio version below:
DIY Active – Melissa Tucker Interview
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