When I don’t want to work out, I think of how I’ll feel afterward and then it makes me want to do it. I don’t want to let myself down, plus I know it’ll make me feel a million times better.
As a part of my series about “5 Lifestyle Tweaks That Will Dramatically Improve One’s Wellbeing”, I had the pleasure of interviewing Nikki Clarke.
Nikki is the Founder of Cadenshae, the maternity activewear global leaders, wife to Adam and a mother of four. Helping others has been at the core of every major decision Nikki’s ever made. From serving as a Medic in the New Zealand army to performing treatments as a beauty therapist; to encouraging others as a personal trainer, and now by helping mothers worldwide be the best they can be.
Nikki loves spending time with her family at the beach, on the farm or out camping!
Thank you for joining us Nikki! Can you share with us the story about how you first got involved in fitness and wellness?
I’ve always been a sporty girl and love the feeling of being fit. My father is a Policeman, so naturally, as part of his career, he had to keep fit and this never waned. I watched him working out all the time growing up and would do some workouts with him! He taught me that this was a ‘normal’ way of life, so I’ve continued on with it and have had a huge passion for it since then.
Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started your career?
Since beginning Cadenshae in 2015, I have had four children in 4.5 years! I think that is interesting…crazy but interesting!
Can you share a story with us about the most humorous mistake you made when you were first starting? What lesson or takeaway did you learn from that?
I fell asleep once taking a yoga class on a cruise ship where I worked as a personal trainer! I had been working late at night and was super exhausted. I think I may have snorted a bit and woke myself up! It was at the end of the class where we lay down and concentrated on breathing for 10min. I recovered pretty well, and I don’t think anyone knew what had happened! Fingers crossed!
Can you share with our readers a bit about why you are an authority in the fitness and wellness field? In your opinion, what is your unique contribution to the world of wellness?
I don’t know if I am an ‘authority’ per se, but I am a qualified personal trainer, I’ve worked in the industry for years and maintain a commitment to a healthy lifestyle…so I know a thing or two I guess!
As a family, keeping healthy is just what we do. We exercise, eat right and maintain a healthy lifestyle. Having four children and keeping healthy is a priority for us, but I know it’s something a lot of people do struggle with…so if passing on what we do as a family helps another family out, that’s all that matters to me!
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?
Adam, Adam and more Adam! Adam is my husband and my rock and soul mate. I wouldn’t be where I am today without his love, support, encouragement, and advice. He is my life partner, business partner, and my best friend. We are a solid team in all things and I am beyond grateful I nabbed him!
Ok thank you for all that. Now let’s move to the main focus of our interview. We all know that it’s important to eat more vegetables, eat less sugar, exercise more, and get better sleep etc. But while we know it intellectually, it’s often difficult to put it into practice and make it a part of our daily habits. In your opinion what are the 3 main blockages that prevent us from taking the information that we all know, and integrating it into our lives?
I’d say it’s a combination of a detrimental routine that people find hard to get out of, a perception that being healthy is ‘too hard,’ and a lack of appreciation for how important it is to truly look after yourself. If you don’t understand the importance and the benefits of being healthy, then you won’t take the steps required to get there.
Can you please share your “5 Non-Intuitive Lifestyle Tweaks That Will Dramatically Improve One’s Wellbeing”? (Please share a story or an example for each, and feel free to share ideas for mental, emotional and physical health.)
- Every morning I have a cold shower, I don’t want to, but it’s a huge challenge that I overcome before I’ve even had breakfast! And it definitely wakes me up!
- Look at the food and think of how it’s going to make me feel. Then I decide if I still want it.
- When I don’t want to work out, I think of how I’ll feel afterward and then it makes me want to do it. I don’t want to let myself down, plus I know it’ll make me feel a million times better.
- Water, if I’m thirsty I always drink water before anything else.
- I always seek hugs and kisses from my husband and children — instant pick me up!
As an expert, this might be obvious to you, but I think it would be instructive to articulate this for the public. Aside from weight loss, what are 3 benefits of daily exercise? Can you explain?
- Endorphins. It makes you feel amazing and so good for your long-term mental health.
- Strength. It makes everyday life easier.
- Mental toughness to push through can be carried through into work, a tough day with kids, etc.
For someone who is looking to add exercise to their daily routine, which 3 exercises would you recommend that are absolutely critical?
2. Some type of pulling exercise, rows for example; something for your back.
3. A pushing exercise like push-ups. Obviously modify if need be — push-ups on a bench or on your knees.
In my experience, many people begin an exercise regimen but stop because they get too sore afterwards. What ideas would you recommend to someone who plays sports or does heavy exercise to shorten the recovery time, and to prevent short term or long-term injury?
Eat good food. Hydrate. Soreness is your muscles preparing and getting stronger. So the more you do it the stronger you get which will, in turn, make you better for your sport. Keeping your body moving with light walks on off days is a good idea too.
There are so many different diets today. Can you share what kind of diet you follow? Which diet do you recommend to most of your clients?
No diet, just eat good, real food. And everything in moderation. If it isn’t something you can do for a lifetime — then don’t start it at all. It has to be a lifestyle change you make, not a diet.
Is there a particular book that made a significant impact on you? Can you share a story?
Not much of a book reader, unfortunately. I want to get into it more. It’s more a culmination of articles I’ve read over time. My husband is reading the ‘5 am Club,’ so maybe that’ll be my next book — he said it’s awesome!
You are a person of enormous influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂
Making moms the world over feel amazing. Looking after each other, supporting each other and helping one another through the toughest, most beautiful time of their lives. I would love to start a movement where moms who don’t know each other work-out together, share clothes, swap baby stuff, share recipes etc…just generally be there for each other. Lots of women don’t have family around so having a network of moms that want to help each other be the best version of themselves would be awesome to implement.
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Do you have a story about how that was relevant in your life?
You can do anything you what to do. Literally anything. Be a good person, choose happiness and positivity.
We are very blessed that some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this if we tag them 🙂
Wow, there is probably a very long list! Steve Rendle CEO of VF Corp would be pretty interesting to talk to from a business standpoint and from a personal aspect Serena Williams, The Rock, or Joe Rogan.
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Thank you for these fantastic insights. We wish you only continued success in your great work!