Having a healthy heart, doing regular exercise and enjoying your food is the best way to look and feel great, says the Britain's Got Talent judge
Singer Alesha Dixon is a massive fan of Zest's #strongnotskinny campaign.
'I don't obsess over weight, I don't own scales. It is about being strong and having a healthy heart,' she tells us.
'I'm never going to have Jessica Ennis' stomach - because I love my carbs and I love my food, but I go by how I feel.
'I make sure that I get my exercise in when I can, I am conscious about what I eat, but I treat myself when I want to. That keeps me happy and that's how I live my life, in a balanced way.
'It is about being strong and healthy - that is one billion times more important than being skinny.'
The 34-year-old is like the rest of us in that she has days when she just doesn't fancy working out. Alesha admits, 'Sometimes, when you think about exercising it feels like a chore - but then once you’ve done it you feel so much better. I just connect to that and realise the benefits of it and understand the deeper meaning of exercise.
'I’ve got a trainer that I use, so I know if I work out with her I am going to do 10 times more than if I workout on my own because she cracks the whip and motivates me,' she says.
'Janet makes me do the plank, and times me - and I almost cry! That's why I think it's important to work out with someone else because they make you do the things you want to cheat on.'
The plank: the best EVER flat stomach exercise
The Britain's Got Talent judge has teamed up with LA Fitness health clubs to launch their Beach Fit campaign, offering fitness, diet and motivation tips as bikini season approaches.
She is, however, a strong believer in little-and-often fitness, rather than cramming her workouts in at the last minute. So how does she stay in shape?
'I run sometimes if the weather is nice. I like dog walking as well, just an hour's walking with the dogs makes me feel like I have done something. It’s not about killing yourself it’s about doing little and often,' she explains.
When she's on the road, Alesha loves getting out and about.
'I don't find it easy to work out in a hotel room. If I’m somewhere warm I’m always more inspired to go out and run and go to the gym, it just depends on where I am.
'When I go to LA, I go to this place which is a hiking spot and people are always up there walking, or you can go up there running. It’s lovely because you can see all over LA and it’s just inspiring if you see other people working out. That’s why I think the gym is good because you can see other people working out and it keeps you motivated.'
Open-air exercise boosts motivation
Alesha has a healthy attitude to food too. Handbag snacks tend to be an apple or tangerine. 'Other days I have nut bars. I eat chocolate and crisps but I don't snack through the day on them, I snack on healthy things such as Ryvita with cottage cheese, maybe avocado.'
'I don't deprive myself if I want something sweet, because that's when I think you start to binge. If you just treat yourself when you want to and do it in moderation then it's cool, and a lot more realistic,' she says.
LA fitness are offering members the opportunity to work out with a friend for free over the summer months as part of their Beach Fit campaign.
It's an offer Alesha would definitely take advantage of. She says, 'I find if I’m on my own I’m always watching the time, so I have to cover up the clock, otherwise it feels like I’m there forever. When I’m with Janet or with a mate I don’t think about that - it’s a distraction and I think everyone needs that sometimes.'
Check out Beach Fit programmes and summer deals at www.lafitness.co.uk
Like us on facebook
Follow us on twitter
Other Hearst Magazines UK sites