Q. You've been open about having a chronic pain condition called trigeminal neuralgia, especially with your fundraising event Face The Change. How does the illness impact your ability and desire to work out?
A. Many of us with trigeminal neuralgia struggle with positive thinking and workout motivation because we're in pain. Thankfully, I've always been a super-positive person. I know I can't control the disease, but I can control how I react to it. And doing a little something (like exercise) is always better than a whole lot of nothing. Even though my desire to work out doesn't change due to trigeminal neuralgia—I always want to move because I know after I move, my mood is elevated and I always feel much better—I've had to adjust the way I work out. Some days when you're in chronic pain there are things you can't do. So I'll do more stretching and not interval work, where I get my heart rate up to 90%. It's important to listen to what your body needs versus what you want.
Q. After our staff took your Best Butt Ever class at Equinox, I totally felt it the next day. Does spot training work?
A. Even though it's called Best Butt Ever and you thought you were just doing butt moves, the class was designed as a full metabolic conditioning workout. It just happens to target the lower body. We didn't do biceps curls, but we did do core exercises that moved from head to toe. You worked on shoulder stability in the plank. All the cardiovascular work helps increase fat loss all over. So you were actually working so much more than just your butt.
Q. What's your best advice for moms or anyone who is incredibly busy and having a tough time fitting in fitness? How can they find workout motivation?
A. Find something you can do in your house and make yourself a priority. As moms you run around all day long for your family. You lose sight of the fact you need to take care of yourself. The best way to do it is to get fit at home. On Acacia, we have hundreds of workouts from less than 5 minutes to 60. You can turn it on while the laundry is being done. Or do it on your lunch break or before the kids wake up in the morning. There are so many different workouts: yoga, martial arts, barre, everything!
Q. If there's one thing you want readers to do as soon a they finish reading this story in order to be healthier, what would it be?
A. Pull out your calendar—I use my phone—and actually schedule in time for yourself every day. Whether it's 5 minutes or 15, develop the habit of taking time for yourself. Visually seeing it on the calendar and committing to it will help you make it part of your life.
Get a taste of Amanda's new Ultimate Beach Body Workout here!