Nina Healthily loves to be on the move, whether she’s climbing, pole dancing or stretching. She’s made it her mission to be strong and healthy so we had a few questions for this body positive blogger.
ZAKTI: Tell us about what you do?
I am a full time student, studying Mathematics at university. In addition, I am training as a Pole Dance instructor, and blog about health and fitness.
Z: What is a working day like for you?
I have to get up early to start university for 9am most days, and spend most of the day studying. A couple of days a week I get the afternoon off, so will usually spend some time exercising then, or on my longer days I try to workout in the evenings. After long days studying I need to move about, otherwise I get very antsy!
Z: What are your favourite pieces in your wardrobe?
As a student I’m lucky that I can be as casual as I like, so I do spend a lot of my time in leggings! I have quite the collection; they are just so comfy and practical for someone who likes to try and handstand at random moments. Occasionally when I dress in “normal” clothes, I do like a classic pair of black jeans and biker boots.
Z: What are your style hacks to take you through all the activities in your day?
Because I like to be as active as possible, and try to minimise carrying multiple outfits with me, I tend to wear a nice top over my sports bra and leggings, taking just a change of tops with me to train in.
Z: How do you like to keep active?
My main sports are pole dancing and indoor climbing, both which I do a few times a week. I love that both sports make exercising really fun and are so varied; I never get bored. In between those I try to squeeze in some conditioning workouts, and time to practice my handstands. On days when I am really strapped for time I will just make the effort to walk a bit more wherever I can.
Z: What do you like to wear when you are being active?
My favourite workout outfit is a cute pair of leggings (I love a good Black&White pattern, mesh panels, or just a flattering colour), paired with a sports bra and slogan tee to cover up. Anything comfortable and flattering makes me feel fabulous, and activewear has to be my favourite kind of clothing!
Z: What are your three tips to keeping fit and healthy?
The first one is to experiment, and find what kind of workout works best for you. I stay so active because I do sports that I really love, but what people enjoy is so personal. Some people love to run – I can’t think of anything worse. Explore different types of exercise to see what you find the most appealing, because if you are having fun rather than seeing it as a chore you are much more likely to stick to it!
Secondly, tupperware will be your best friend if you are a busy person. I always pack my lunch on weekdays, because if I have a healthy lunch in my bag I will eat it. Whereas if I am hungry trying to decide what to buy for myself…I won’t always make the healthiest choice (hungry Nina is not a wise Nina!)
And finally, remember mental health is just as big a part of health as physical health. Taking time for yourself, with what I like to call self-care-time, is equally important as training your body. Giving up everything you love in your life to go to the gym every day is just as unhealthy as never exercising. Finding a sustainable, enjoyable, balanced lifestyle is the way to go – and this may take trial and error, but eventually you will find what works for you.
Z: What is your weekend style?
If I am relaxing or chilling with friends, I love extra stretchy, high waisted jeans and a t- shirt, or for dressing up a simple but flattering dress with heeled boots. My style is a bit biker chic, so if I can add a leather jacket and boots to an outfit I will!
Z: What do you do to unwind and stay balanced?
Not going to lie, I love a bit of trash TV. After using my brain a lot at uni, and being active with all my sport, I like to relax on the sofa and switch off (preferably cuddled up to my dog!) Otherwise going to brunch with family or friends, walking my dog, or doing some healthy baking are ways I love to unwind.
Z: Which influencers do you admire?
I am always amazed by the incredible things that people are able to do – I follow so many athletes, yogis, dancers and aerial performers that I am just in awe of every day. I get incredibly inspired by @bendykate who is my ultimate pole dancer crush, as well as Instagram yogis such as @catmeffan and @meganjoy.m who not only create beautiful shapes with their bodies, but are also vocal about body positivity and self care which I believe are very important messages. Some other people who I also admire, I am actually lucky enough to call my friends. From the incredibly informative (and beautiful to boot!) fitness and nutrition posts Lucy @thefashionfitnessfoodie shares, to fellow pole dancer and downright badass @movewithtara, and @londonladybase who is huge advocate of self-love and an amazing acro-yogi, these women inspire and motivate me every time I see their posts.
Z: We spotted our ZAKTI gear, what did you like about this look?
I am absolutely obsessed with Kimberly Wyatt’s rose gold Padded Jacket at the moment – it’s so warm and soft inside, but adds a real sparkle to my outfit! It’s dressy enough for every day wear as well as being perfect for outdoor sports. Plus rose gold is my colour of the moment. I also love the turquoise of these incredibly soft and comfortable leggings, and who doesn’t love a motivational quote tee?!
Z: What’s next for you?
Since I still have another two years of my studies ahead of me, that is my main focus at the moment, but I am hoping to be able to continue to incorporate my other passions; pole, fitness and blogging, into my life as well. In addition, I have just started running beginner pole dance workshops, called Grab A Pole, with my friend Tara, the first one of which is on 9th December. I’m excited to be able to bring my love of pole to newbies, and hopefully more people can experience the real magic and beauty that I love about my sport!
Find out more about Nina Healthily on her blog.