How to have your healthiest year ever with Psycle's Rhian Stephenson
posted on Tuesday, 3rd January 2017 | find under Fitness
A former Canadian international swimmer, Rhian Stephenson is CEO of Psycle (aka the most fun you can have on a bike). Known for her high-intensity, fun classes that have a never ending waitlist, Rhian is also a trained naturopath, nutritionist and herbalist, and she’s pretty much made a career out of transforming people’s lives from a holistic perspective. In fact, we've crowned her the queen of making even the most reluctant people want to work out. Here she shares her top tips on how to have your healthiest year ever in 2017.
How to have your healthiest year ever
Don’t take on too much too quickly
January is a time for a renewed sense of determination – a commitment to do things ‘right’ this year. It’s great to have goals, but it’s even better to realise that it takes time, tools and practice to get there. Coming back to restrictive eating and intense exercise plans is often too unsustainable to continue, which often leads people to quit and feel a sense of failure. Set yourself up for success by setting goals AND a realistic time frame you can implement them by. Use January to ease into your routine so that you feel confident, balanced and able to take on exactly what you want to.
Set yourself 3 non-negotiables
The most common question I get asked is what the most important secret to staying fit is. If I have to pick one thing it's consistency. There is no one week cure all cleanse, bootcamp or supplement that will get you to your goal and keep you there. Health and fitness is a practice and a journey; it doesn’t happen overnight. So how do you ensure you can get there? One of the best ways is by setting yourself some non-negotiables and be uncompromising. What are the 3 things you are going to commit to doing consistently, no matter what is going on in your life?
I recommend setting one in fitness, one in nutrition and the third in alcohol consumption. Setting yourself some rules that you never compromise on can be incredibly empowering – it removes the deliberation and gives you a clear and consistent path. For example, my fitness one is that I never, ever do less than 3 workouts a week. This is the most impactful thing you can do for success. Use January as a bit of a ‘soft launch’ so that you can give yourself a buffer to get it right.
Practice understanding, not punishment
No matter what our intentions, we are still human! Missteps will happen, but how you deal with them will make or break the way you experience your health. When I overeat (yes, I overeat too!) instead of going down the spiral of punishment and guilt I sit back, and think, ok – why did that happen? This way you can start to learn about what triggers you, and this information is gold. If you can understand it, you can start to put healthy habits and practices in place that will help you navigate the bumps. One bad meal doesn’t need to turn into an anxiety fueled 3-day binge. Shake it off, be kind to yourself and move on!
Decide how you want to feel
Gone are the days when nutrition and exercise were all about a number on the scale. Yes, we all want to look good, but shift to focus to some of the incredible effects of exercise and nutrition that don’t have to do with weight. Energy, confidence, enjoyment, social connection, incredible skin, libido, pride, clarity, concentration – these are just some of the side effects of exercising. If you start to find more positively about why you want exercise and eat well, your chances of success will skyrocket.
Schedule your year in health
Remember consistency is the key – so one of the best things you can do is have a little planning session around how you’re going to keep it up. All forms of ancient medicines practices cleansing with the seasons, so I always recommend setting aside 7 days at the end of each quarter to give yourself a reset. This doesn’t mean you need to juice cleanse or do some type of intense fasting. It’s about taking 7 days to really nourish your body and reset. Rest, avoid alcohol, eat fresh, plant based food, ditch the caffeine and take cleansing herbs to support your system. Trust me, your body will thank you for it. Use January to plan and then get it in the diary ASAP! I’ve done this for the last 10 years and I absolutely love it now.
Three burning questions
Describe your morning routine?
My morning routine isn’t very exciting - I’m a creature of habit so I generally have two options!
On days I exercise, I wake up early, have some water and lemon and or tea and am out the door quickly. I exercise in the morning about 3 days per week, so I’ll have breakfast and coffee afterwards.
On days I don’t exercise, I wake up early and will make coffee and breakfast. I like to give myself time to just enjoy this and gather my thoughts before rushing into my day, even if it means waking up extra early.
Your failsafe workout and why?
Obviously, Psycle! It’s the only place I can completely switch off. I love music so the immersive environment, effectiveness of the workout and motivation is exactly what I need to destress and get in a great workout. I find it too easy to switch off in other workouts and I absolutely love getting a great sweat, so for me Psycle is the only thing that guarantees that.
What five items would we always find in your fridge?
Nut milk – for coffee, porridge, smoothies and breakfasts.
Vegetables – I always have veg in my fridge for quick snacking.
Eggs – for quick protein on days I'm stumped for dinner.
Pickles – Love them. Weirdly they’re one of my favourites!
Kefir – this is just something I’ve done recently, but I make big batches of Kefir that last for a few weeks. I love it and it’s great for digestion and immunity in the winter months.
Find out more about Rhian and Psycle here and find her on social at @psyclelondon and @rhianstephenson. Join us for your fittest January ever at sweatybetty.com/31daystofit with exclusive workouts, wellness tips, healthy recipes and more. Share your sweaty workouts and recipe snaps with #31DaysToFit.