'There's something about lifting weights that makes me feel strong and powerful'
Personal trainer and fitness influencer Krissy Cela has fallen for cardio and loves a high energy playlist, discovers Liz Connor
With more than 1.7 million Instagram followers, Krissy Cela has become one of the biggest fitness stars on social media. We caught up with the Tone & Sculpt (toneandsculpt.app) fitness app founder to find out how embracing a healthier way of life changed her outlook...
How did you first get into fitness?
"About five years ago, whilst I was in law school, I went through a really difficult break-up. It left me feeling physically and emotionally drained.
"I decided I needed to make a change for the better. I wanted to feel empowered and to challenge myself like never before. That's when I found fitness. Not only did my appearance change, but I found I was mentally stronger than ever too.
"My fitness journey didn't happen overnight though, and that's important for people to understand. I had to educate myself in fitness and nutrition, along with lots of trial and error to get to where I am today."
What's your favourite way to get a sweat on?
"In the past I would always avoid cardiovascular workouts. I was a 'cardi-no' girl.
"There's something about lifting weights that makes me feel strong and powerful, and I found cardio so boring, so I kept it to a bare minimum.
"A few months ago, I decided to introduce some cardio workout into my routine and I was shocked at how much I enjoyed it. Cardio workouts are great for keeping your heart healthy, reducing stress levels, as well as burning those extra calories.
"I love a low-intensity steady state cardio session (also known as LISS) too, like an incline walk or using a Stairmaster for 30-45 minutes. I love listening to marketing podcasts while I do LISS workouts, it helps distract me from the task at hand so I don't get bored.
"On the other hand, if I have less time, I will pick one of the circuits from the Tone & Sculpt app. These are only around 15 minutes long but as they are based around high-intensity interval training (HIIT), they definitely get your heart rate up."
How has your relationship with fitness changed over time?
"I used to train five days a week as a minimum. Initially, my journey was about feeling better about myself, but somewhere along the way my desire to look a certain way took over. Fitness became more about aesthetics than my overall health.
"It was such a physical demand on my body, on top of running a business and juggling my own personal brand, so it started to get overwhelming. I wanted to have fitness fit into my life and my lifestyle, not the other way around. So I decided to make some big changes in how I trained.
"My workouts now consist of three workouts a week. One lower body, one upper body and one full body workout. This gives me a lot more flexibility and I actually have much more energy now in my training sessions."
What are your gym bag essentials that you couldn't leave the house without?
"Headphones are an absolute must for me, they help me to get into my zone during my workouts.
"A good playlist can increase endurance, elevate your mood and reduce stress, so headphones are essential.
"I always carry a natural and vegan friendly deodorant, dry shampoo, face wipes and lip balm so I am always feeling fresh. Spare leggings and female products are kept in my gym bag too for emergencies - I'm sure the ladies can all relate!
"Finally, I will always have amino energy powder and protein powder with me, along with a shaker bottle to keep me fuelled during and after my workouts."
What type of music do you play to get yourself in the zone?
"I love music so much and I'm always on the lookout for new music and fresh artists. Depending on my mood and what I'm training, it can vary massively.
"Taking an hour to create a playlist with all your favourite workout songs can help increase productivity in the gym, as you'll spend less time scrolling through trying to find something you like."
The Tone & Sculpt app is available from £13.99 a month (App Store and Google Play)