As if wellness powerhouse Tracy Anderson isn’t busy enough, she recently signed on as an ambassador for Buick’s sleek new Cascada convertible. We caught up with the trainer-to-the-stars (read: Gwyneth, Gisele, etc.) to find out more about the car, what she eats on “cheat” days (and why she hates that word), and why real women are inspiring her even more than celebrities these days.
What makes your partnership with Buick, and in particular this car, the Cascada, a perfect fit for you? TRACY ANDERSON: I believe a lot in experiences—life is short, we’re all overworked and busy and over-scheduled, and so I think what’s more important than time management now is focus. For me, to be able to focus and be successful really demands that you also have to focus on connecting to life. The convertible is a really fun ride, and because it connects to more of your senses when you’re just doing daily activity, you’re technically burning more calories because your engagement rate and the activity is higher and your senses are really kicked in.
The Buick Cascada is all about being summer-ready. How do you suggest people get back into shape after a winter of slacking off? TA: The best thing you can do is be honest about the fact that you have slacked off, and understand that it’s not something that you need to be eased back into, that you need to give daily attention to connecting to your body. One day it might mean 30 minutes and one day it might be an hour and 45 minutes, depending on what your schedule allows. The point is that you get focused and that you choose activity that allows strategy to be made inside your workout time.
I don’t believe in using daily activity like hiking or playing tennis or playing in the yard with your kids as your focused exercise time. I feel that is part of living a daily active life and I think you need to have your regular, focused exercise time set aside.
What’s the most common excuse you hear for not working out, and how do you encourage clients to overcome it? TA: The biggest excuse for not working out is lack of time, or believe it or not, that people have to lose weight before they start working out. What is your favorite cheat food? Where do you go to eat it in NYC & LA? TA: First of all, I cannot stand the word cheat with food. “Cheat” is a super negative word. For me it’s not a matter of cheating, it’s a matter of, I’m a woman and I have a menstrual cycle and it needs to operate regularly for me to be optimized, so we have different weeks out of the month as women that we crave certain things and it’s very important that we give our bodies those things. That doesn’t mean that we should eat five pizzas or supersize French fries or a huge plate of brownies, but it does mean you should have what it is that you crave.
My favorite thing is either Babycakes chocolate chip cookie sandwiches with vanilla frosting in the middle, or Sprinkles’ gluten-free cupcakes. I am a complete sugar nut. French fries are a really close second for me, I love French fries. My favorite French fries in LA would have to be from Salt Air in Venice. And in New York I really love the French fries in the library at The Greenwich Hotel. Also for me, a good glass of wine is something I would enjoy on a day where I was being less strict.
Is there any celebrity that you haven’t worked with yet but you would really like to? Why? TA: For me, the thing that’s driving me the most recently is the Vitality Weeks all over the country and beyond—meeting all of these women that are achieving such cool things in their lives, becoming more balanced and more connected, and letting their lights shine brighter than they ever thought possible is really inspiring me far more than any celebrity I’ve ever trained.
To be honest there probably isn’t a celebrity you could name that hasn’t knocked on my door or contacted my office to train at some point. I’ve even trained Ms. Piggy. For me it’s not about the celebrities. Plus, I’ve learned it’s disappointing to meet someone that you’re a fan of their work but you meet them in person and are a little disappointed. But I’ve also had the reverse of that happen—I’ve been a fan of somebody’s work first and met them in person and thought they were even more incredible.
What’s next for you? TA: I have a lot going on. I’m writing a book right now, which I’m really excited about. I am getting ready to launch bars that make it easy for you to take a healthier to-go meal with you to help with your weight management. We’re launching them in Target. I’ve got a brand new DVD coming out—it’s the first time I’ve launched a DVD in a class in my studio. It’s called TA VA and it’s a really high-calorie-burning, low-impact, no-jumping, dance cardio. We’re expanding and opening more studio spaces. My online streaming program called T.A. Real Time is something that is changing every single week. I’m also re-launching my home delivery fresh food program so you can get really fresh, prepared, whole food meals as well.