Can I just say, how cool is Erin McNaught? Honestly – the Aussie ‘It’ Girl has it all… a beautiful family, a killer career, an incredible work ethic, dedication to Active Living and boy can she seriously rock Lorna Jane activewear! But above all else, she is one of the sweetest women I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with… she smiled the whole way through our January campaign photo shoot on a blazing hot Queensland summers day – she really is a trooper. In between takes, we couldn’t stop chatting about everything from our go-to workouts and favourite recipes to all of the things we’re going to do to make this year the BEST year of our lives – so I decided to get my journalist on and interview Erin so you could all see just how amazing she really is!
Do you have a favourite quote or mantra that you’re going to live by in 2016?
I’ve always been extremely self-conscious and worried what other people think. Since having a baby, I feel as though these negative traits are slowly lifting from my shoulders. My mantra for 2016 is to keep focused on the health and happiness of myself, my son and my husband and everything else will follow. Worrying what other people think of you is senseless – it won’t achieve anything other than more insecurity.
Do you have any big, bold goals or intentions that you want to smash this year?
2015 was all about taking time out to really enjoy being a mum and to be completely present for my son Van’s first year. My goal was to be the best mum I could be. For 2016 I want to still focus first and foremost on motherhood, but I also want to start taking on more work that I feel represents me as the person I am now. Motherhood has given me a strength, determination and sense of direction that I’ve not had before! So 2016 will see me building my brand, focusing on inspiring women and other mothers in particular to become the best, healthiest versions of themselves.
Are you one of those people who makes big New Years resolutions or are you more inclined to make smaller weekly or monthly goals or intentions (like me)?
I’ve never once made a New Year’s resolution! I find the whole idea contrived and unrealistic – people’s entire years’ worth of perceived failures or unachieved goals come to the fore and they vow not to repeat the same mistakes. However change begins with tiny steps repeated consistently, not a life overhaul decided upon in one night.
How do you go about accomplishing goals? Do you make vision boards, do you write goal lists or do have something like a pinterest board that you constantly refer to?
This might sound a bit cringe-worthy but my husband is my great motivator! He never lets me become overrun by self-doubt; he’s encouraging yet realistic. He helps me see my strengths and build on them and gently points out when I’m going in a direction he doesn’t feel is right for me. Currently we divide our time between London and Sydney but we never have any idea where we’ll be at any point in time, which makes structured career goals difficult to achieve. So rather than having goals set in stone, they’re constantly evolving to suit our ever-changing lifestyle.
What are your training objectives for 2016?
I aim to be able to do 10 chin-ups in a row by June 2016. I can currently do 6! Very specific, I know, but they’ve become a bit of an addiction for me! Feeling your body regain its strength after having a baby is so empowering and chin-ups are an easy measure of how your strength is improving. I know it’s only one aspect of full body strength so of course I will be continuing my HIIT (high-intensity interval training) workouts too (my favourite workouts!) I also started rock climbing again earlier this year after I had Van so I definitely want to continue this when we return to London. I also know I need to be more consistent with yoga – it’s so good for you but it often gets neglected as its not my typical type of workout.
How often to you change up your workout plan?
Not very often!! Haha I know that’s bad but I actually have quite a varied ‘exercise diet’ which keeps me motivated and happy so I don’t feel the need to really change it up too much. When in London I try to do 1 x 2hr yoga class, 2 x HIIT and 1 x weights session each week, plus daily walks of 7-12km with Van. When in Sydney I find I do less HIIT due to the heat but do 2 x soft sand runs instead. In Brisbane (where my family live) I go rock climbing once a week as well. I don’t get too caught up in keeping everything overly balanced, I believe that your body tells you what you can and can’t do, so if I feel my joints are suffering from too much running then I naturally cut back and do some more body weight exercise instead. At the end of the day, exercise is about making me feel good, so as soon as it feels like a chore I relax a bit or change tack.
I had SOOOOO much fun on Jan campaign shoot (blaring heat aside), what was the standout moment or highlight for you?
Me too! I had no idea you were coming so that was actually the highlight of my day! Aside from that nice surprise I also really enjoyed lunch – it was really great to sit down with the LJ team and crew and get to know everyone. Also, photoshoots make me so hungry! ?
If you had to pick a favourite outfit from the shoot, what would it be?
I absolutely loved all of them! I would have to say that in particular though, the grey Porsha 7/8 tights with the peepholes with the Nikki Sports Bra was my favourite. I also love the Tropic Workout Bra and Dee 3/4 Tights combo.
Do you have any tips for embracing Active Living when you travel?
As soon I arrive at my destination, I go out for a walk or go to the gym if it’s raining. I try to take Van with me as getting out and about is the best remedy for jet lag! I also swear by Welleco Super Elixir (and no, I’m not sponsored by the brand). I find it helps regulate my appetite and helps to keep me feeling balanced no matter where I am or how long I’ve been traveling for.
What mark/imprint do you want to leave on 2016?
I want to help women everywhere feel empowered to take control of their health and happiness by using exercise and a good diet to find the best versions of themselves. I want other mothers to be strong and ignore any ridicule or long-held notions that mothers can’t be fit and healthy soon after giving birth. I’ve received a lot of criticism in the past for supposedly ‘losing the baby weight’ too quickly (I only put on 9kg in pregnancy so didn’t have much to lose in the first place) and supposedly promoting an unrealistic image for other mothers. I want to challenge this – why is eating well and exercising during and after pregnancy so bad, if it’s been ok’d by a doctor? Surely it’s better than using pregnancy as an excuse to eat whatever you want, putting on a lot of weight quickly and putting yourself and your baby at risk from complications such as gestational diabetes. Pregnancy is hard enough without putting extra strain on your body. I’m not saying that if you eat well and exercise that you will have an easy pregnancy but I believe that we should be doing all we can to try and make things easier on ourselves. We come in all shapes and sizes, so trolling someone because they lost weight ‘too quickly’ or their bump is ‘too small’ is ignorant and small-minded and doesn’t help anyone.
What are you most excited about for the year ahead?
I’m super excited to be kicking off the new year with an LJ campaign! I feel like it’s the perfect start to my year. My husband and I have also been talking about a possible relocation to Australia in the not-too-distant future, which obviously is a big deal! I’m also really keen on getting more involved in the health and fitness world and seeing what opportunities lie ahead in that area. My husband and I have also been discussing baby #2 sometime this year, so there’s lots to be excited about!