WASHINGTON — Ever wonder how Jennifer Aniston got her perfectly sculpted arms and lean figure? Two words: Mandy Ingber.
Ingber is a fitness and wellness expert and a New York Times best-selling author. She’s also Aniston’s yoga instructor and has worked with a number of other celebrities, including Jennifer Lawrence and Kate Beckinsale.
Ingber says Aniston’s aurora is the result of more than a few sweat sessions.
“Jennifer Aniston does, of course, have an incredible body, but I think part of what people respond to with her is that she seems very comfortable in her own skin; she seems healthy and holistic,” Ingber said.
“Obviously that comes from more than just being active.”
In fact, it comes from working on both the body and the mind.
If you want arms — and an attitude — like Aniston, you don’t need to fly to Los Angeles for a private consultation. Ingber offers simple tips for getting your whole self in shape this summer:
Tip #1: Move your body every day
An important part of getting healthy is staying active, and Ingber recommends taking an hour each day to move your body in one way or another.
“It doesn’t have to be really intense exercise. It could be something like taking a walk, a yoga practice, or something a little more active like a spinning class or hiking,” Ingber said.
A whole hour may seem like an impossible amount of time to cram into an already packed schedule, but you can break it up. Find pockets of time throughout the day to exercise “even if it’s just walking around the block,” Ingber said.
And make sure you hold yourself accountable. “I really recommend planning it and making a date, just like one of the celebrities would.”
Tip #2: Meditate
It may sound counterintuitive, but sitting still can go a long way to improving your overall health — if the stillness is intentional.
“I know that can seem very daunting at times to people — to incorporate meditation into their life, but even if it’s just five minutes a day of sitting down … and focusing on your breath, because meditation is really just simple, mindful breathing,” Ingber said.
If you’re new to meditation, Ingber says find a quiet space and start paying attention to the breaths moving in and out of your nose. If you notice your mind wandering to your to-do list, don’t get discouraged.
“That’s what the mind is designed to do; our brains want to think,” Ingber said.
Instead, acknowledge that your mind is somewhere else and then bring your awareness back to your breath. A five-minute session should leave you feeling relaxed and refreshed.
Tip #3: Nourish yourself
Ingber is not going to advise you to never eat a chocolate bar or snack on a handful of potato chips. She says all of that is fine — in moderation.
Ingber tries to live her life by the 80/20 rule, wherein 80 percent of what she eats are whole foods (“fruits and vegetables, grains, things that are not necessarily in a package”). Twenty percent of the time, she treats herself.
When it comes to food, the focus shouldn’t be on limitations. Ingber says it should be on nourishing your body and filling it with the nutrition it needs to maintain an active lifestyle.
“Because we’re looking for just finding a way to give ourselves support, and what you put in your body really does matter,” she said.