Being one of the top names in pilates is no joke, and with over a decade of recognition for her methods of training and fitness, Andrea Speir was a woman we wanted to get to know. Yes, Andrea is a fitness professional, but we didn’t choose to feature her because of that. Read Andrea’s interview below and you’ll see why we thought this smiley determined lady was the perfect fit to be one of our #GLOSSYBeauty’s this month!
Can you share what got you into fitness? What is your background?
As a competitive dancer at a young age, I put my body through constant rigorous training. With the performance level required with this kind of dance, my joints and muscles were constantly worked and overworked. In the peak of my young dance career, my knee gave out and I tore my meniscus. This led me to a steady routine Pilates-based physical therapy. This was when I was first introduced to the personalized training side of physical fitness and I truly fell in love with this focused way to strengthen, sculpt and change each individual body.
What is Cyberobics? What makes it unique in the crowded fitness market?
Cyberobics is one of the most fantastic and innovative fitness workout programs I have ever seen or been a part of. They have shot stunningly beautiful workout videos with the trainers who are the very best and at the top of the fitness world here in the states. These trainers bring their expertise and charisma to these videos and train people through their virtual workouts in the exact way they train the Hollywood elite. Having gotten to both film these workouts and workout to them, I can truly say I’ve never seen higher quality workout videos or more dynamic ones in my 15 years in the fitness world. I think the fact that they put so much love and attention into the details of each and every shoot and do not cut corners in making these basically full blown film productions is what has drawn the top trainers in the world to want to work with them.
There is certainly a wellness movement happening today, which is very affected by/in-tune to technology. Can you share how that crossover between wellness and tech is reflected in Cyberobics?
Cyberobics in a way is leading this fitness + tech movement. They realized that there are incredible trainers doing amazing things to change people’s bodies, but they are only in their location (New York, Los Angeles, etc). They realized what is needed, addressed how to combine the exciting growing tech world with fitness and are leading the path.
The entire world is accessible now via technology, so they have flown across the world to capture these workouts and bring them to Europe. They are also making these workouts available on your time- things can get so crazy with work and life to even make it to a training session or workout class if you DO have the trainer, so they are letting people come to the gym when it works for them and be able to choose the workout they want, when they want. This has been done from home in the past with subscriptions sites- but that takes out the crucial community level to it. Coming to the gym and working out with like-minded people and inspiring each other side by side is one of the best ways to commit to changing your body.
What advice do you have for people who want to get healthy/lose weight/work out but they are overwhelmed and don’t know where to start?
I truly believe the most important thing when you start is to choose something you actually enjoy. If you love dance, find a dance cardio class that you can look at as a hobby for yourself. If you don’t like cardio and feel comfortable with simple weights- find a weight lifting or sculpting workout. If you commit to something you like, you will show up. Once you begin to get in this healthy routine and you start seeing change in your body and energy, you will want to increase your workout regiment and begin to add in the other styles and elements that will make your weekly routine truly well rounded. This is when your body changes in a way you didn’t think was possible.
Are there many women in the fitness industry? Do you know what the ratio is/can you share what your experience has been?
There are ABSOLUTELY women in the fitness industry! In a lot of ways here in Los Angeles, women are leading the fitness revolution. There are so many new ways to sculpt, tone and change your body now. It’s not just about lifting weights or high intensity cardio anymore. Women are introducing all kinds of fusion elements and in a way that men generally speaking are not. For example- cardio Pilates, hot yoga, dance cardio and then of course the traditional styles of weight training with a focused routine to change the body. So yes, in the fusion world here, women are dominant! In the boxing and hiit training (high intensity interval training), there are still more men than women however. What is so cool for me to see over the last decade is this shifting of the gender ratio. When you go to a gym, there are equal men and women trainers on the floor. It’s more about someone’s personality and background vs. what their gender is. Women are kicking major butt here in the USA fitness scene.
What are you most proud of accomplishing? Can you share any challenges you’ve faced and how you’ve overcome them?
I think what I’m most proud of is dreaming big and then figuring out a way to execute those dreams. I imagined creating a Pilates-based method of training that grew into a studio. This studio would be a community feel that embraced all people and athletic abilities and made everyone feel like an athlete. The people who worked here would be some of the best trainers in Los Angeles. I dreamed this and then I made it a reality. What was the most difficult was figuring out how to balance running and expanding a business that was my dream with having a family. Both of these are things I’ve always wanted that I want to give 100% of myself to. Figuring out how to balance my team in the day is still an ongoing struggle, but I will say I’m proud that I’ve made both happen and I feel that I am able to extend more energy and more of myself to both of these passions than I realized I had in me.
What are the best types of exercises for women? How often should they be working out?
I think having a balance of a few different kinds of fitness styles is key for everyone. In my opinion, one of the best things for women is high repetition and light weight exercises, like athletic Pilates. These moves elongate the muscles and then chisel and sculpt them, so you don’t bulk out the muscle, but instead get that long chiseled look (with an amazing deep strength that is so important for the health of our bodies). Training celebrities here in LA, I’ve found this is the “red carpet” look they all want, and it translates because it isn’t just an aesthetic look, it’s all about the little muscles that help to support those bigger ones and help your body be so strong and so healthy, while you get the bonus of looking like a total babe.
If you could tell women to cut out/replace ONE thing in their daily meals/lives, what would it be?
I believe life is all about balance, if we try to tell ourselves we simply cannot have one thing, sometimes it backfires and makes you feel like your choices are not maintainable. So, what I do is I make my choices but try to be creative with them! If I want a piece of toast for breakfast, instead of smothering it in butter (yum), I’ll slice a few pieces of avocado and put it on top or cover it in a bit of almond butter. This way I get some good fat in my system instead of processed fat. The good fats are necessary for your metabolism to work properly, so you want to make sure to get a bit of that in your diet. So I’m not saying you can’t have everything you want, but how could you make it one notch healthier?
In terms of today’s fitness consumer, what is she/he looking for? Any big trends you can name?
A trend I’ve been seeing here in Los Angeles is full body fusion workouts- that means it isn’t just one style of fitness, you get a couple different approaches in one so your body can’t plateau or get used to the workout because it sticks with its methodology but always changes! Some of the more unique ones I’ve seen lately involve Pilates and yoga on a stand-up pattleboard, or surfboard. Talk about balancing with your abs and lower body!
What advice do you have for women who work at desk jobs all day or are moms? How can you make time for fitness if you feel you have none?
Yes absolutely! One of the most simple and understated things you can do during your day is simply to get out and walk! If you are a mom, get your kiddo and go for a walk around the block. Walk briskly and if you have the option to go up a hill or slope, take it! A brisk walk activates your glutes and hamstrings (backside), engages the core and gets the heart rate up. If you are working long hours at the office, choose to walk to get your lunch. If you bring your lunch, grab it and take a walk to eat it outside. This will help you get a bit of exercise in, and the bonus here is you get to sit outside and get some fresh hour. The combo of moving your body and that vitamin D outside will also help revitalize your mind so you will work more effectively for the remainder of your day!
Do you have a life motto/personal philosophy? If so can you share it?
My personal motto is to always do things that make you happy. Similar to what I mentioned earlier, if you love running- find a new park to run in or find a treadmill class that keeps it interesting! If you like to shake your booty, find a dance cardio class that makes you feel like Beyonce. Life is too short and there are too few hours in the day to force ourselves to do something that doesn’t make us smile. It might sound a bit hokey, but since making this simple commitment to myself, I can honestly say I enjoy and look forward to each and every day.
What is your Instagram handle?