THE BLOG

Real-Life Diet, Fitness Tips From A Guess Model

03/13/2014 12:55 EDT | Updated 05/12/2014 05:59 EDT
Ashley Diana Morris

A lot of people ask me on a regular basis what I do for exercise and what my day-to-day diet is like. If you have been following some of my recent interviews it sounds like I live off of Big Macs and cheese, unfortunately not the case! Just in my dreams!

Eating healthy is not an easy thing for me as I grew up with an amazing cook for a mom -- but with a mom that made a lot of comfort food (aka the best tasting but the highest in fat and carbohydrates). We had potatoes with every meal and mac and cheese and casseroles were a staple at the house.

Before I started modelling, I was about 30 pounds heavier. Losing the weight was extremely difficult and was brought on by my first modelling job. I had dropped about 20 pounds by the time I tested for Guess and it had taken me about two and a half months. My diet consisted of this:

Breakfast:

Protein shake made at home. Almond milk, protein powder and a scoop of peanut butter or I did a fruit smoothie shake.

Lunch:

Salad and tofu. I would go to the grocery store and pick up a few salads from the deli (chickpea, quinoa for example) and have them in my fridge for a lunchtime meal.

Dinner:

Steamed broccoli and grilled chicken. The veggies would change and sometimes I would sub in fish or eggs instead of chicken.

The biggest thing I have learned and I tell anyone trying to lose weight is the hardest part is getting past the first few weeks. Old habits die hard!!! It is frustrating at times to follow such a strict diet, but once the weight is off it is pretty easy to maintain and your diet doesn't have to be as rigid.

Some important rules I live by:

  • No carbs for dinner during the week (this rule sucks, sorry!)
  • Salad is your friend, learn to like it
  • Always go egg whites when you can
  • Treat yourself a little on the weekend or else you won't make it!
  • Cook with a minimum amount of oils instead of butter
  • Dessert isn't an option during the week
  • There are always light options (skinny latte instead of a regular one)
  • Drink lots of water
  • Every couple of weeks, reward yourself whether it be getting your nails done, buying a new book or going to your favourite restaurant. In the beginning it's not easy being healthy

Today's maintenance diet

Today's diet, or what I like to call healthy lifestyle, is pretty close to the one above; however my dinners are a lot more varied. Dinner for me can be anything from steak to sushi to Mexican. I try really hard to stay away from carbs and anything processed.

When I was losing the weight I didn't really treat myself on weekends and if I did, it was very little. Now on weekends I treat myself, as well as if I really want something during the week I have it. Denying yourself is not healthy either.

Working out

I have always been someone to workout but now my workouts have increased dramatically. A big thing I have learned is don't do the same thing every day! Do a Pilates class one day, Yoga another and go for a hike another day. You have to continue to discover new muscles and shock your body in order to keep getting it to that next level.

Also, if you are not sweating you are probably not working as hard as you should be. And if you're stopping at McDonald's for dinner, that workout you just did is going right down the drain! So don't do that!

My workout routine

Five to six times a week where I am working out for approximately one to two hours. I do everything from Barre Fitness to yoga to Pilates, as well as a lot of cardio and weights at the gym.

I know what you're thinking, you can't fit in this much working out, and neither could I when I was working full time. Trust me three to four days a week will get you amazing results, but you have to follow a strict diet. After all my trial and error and experimenting, I am a firm believer: diet is 80 per cent responsible for weight loss and exercise is only 20.

If you have any diet or fitness related questions feel free to reach out to me via Twitter @Ashleydmorris or my Facebook fanpage.

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Ashley Diana Morris