My day doing radio promotion with Armin van Buuren was a lot of fun! We were out promoting his new hit single “Another You” featuring Mr Probz (who had a big hit with his song, Waves). He is one of the biggest DJ’s in the world and last year he was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Dance recording for his single, “This is What it Feels Like” featuring Trevor Gunthrie. We grabbed a few minutes to talk about his healthy secrets and how he makes time to take care of himself while touring the world, and creating hit music.
My favorite memories of working with Wyclef Jean involve numerous occasions of him stopping by my office for a visit that began as a business meeting and then became a dance party. At the time, he had just released his solo album, The Ecleftic: 2 Sides II a Book. It included some of my favorite songs: “Perfect Gentleman,” “The Red Light District,” and “911” (with Mary J Blige). In those days, I shared a large office with my good friend Andrea Kline at the Sony Music headquarters at 550 Madison Avenue in NYC. Wyclef Jean would stop by looking for updates on how his songs were doing on the radio, and before you knew it, he would be putting on a private concert for us. If you have ever seen Clef perform, you would understand why he would immediately have us on our feet dancing and singing.
When he was a teenager, his family moved from Haiti to Newark, New Jersey, where he went to high school. It was there that he teamed up with his cousin Pras and friend Lauryn Hill, and created the iconic music group, The Fugees. Their biggest singles were “Ready or Not” and their remake of Roberta Flack’s “Killing Me Softly.” The band went on to sell over 15 million albums worldwide and their notoriety launched successful solo careers for all three artists.
Wyclef is also a featured performer in several hit songs including: Shakira’s “Hips Don’t Lie” and Santana’s “Maria Maria”. He just released an incredible song with Avicii called “Divine Sorrow;” definitely put it on your workout playlist. His new album, Clefication, will be released in the upcoming Fall of 2015.
In addition to being a legendary rapper, musician, and producer, he is also politically active. In 2010, Wyclef ran for the President of Haiti, but shortly after his campaign began, he was disqualified since he had not lived in Haiti the previous five years. Nonetheless, he remains active to this day in a number of charitable causes supporting his country.
I always love spending time with Wyclef. On his most recent visit to LA, he took me through his workout. I admit it: he kicked my butt! What makes his workouts fun is he feels that the best place to exercise is anywhere you find yourself. Since we were at my friend’s house, we moved the furniture out of the room for a workout that included everything from acro yoga, gymnastics, push ups, tricep dips off the couch, relay races across the living room, and sit ups to Wyclef lifting me up onto his shoulders while doing squats! He even taught me how to walk on my hands, which is something he always did when we traveled together. I like to tell people that working out should be enjoyable. Find something you like doing and get your body moving rather than making it a dreaded chore on your to do list. Get out and have fun! And, as Wyclef taught me, you can exercise anywhere!
As far as food, Wyclef continues the habits he learned from his mother while growing up in Haiti — eat from the earth and choose organic. This includes staying away from processed and manufactured foods. To stay healthy on the road, he travels with his own juicer, and I had the pleasure of learning his technique. As I was rushing to chop the fruit, he taught me to slow down and enjoy the process. Even the washing and chipping of the fruit is part of the experience, so slow down and enjoy. He turned our juicing session into a dance party, just as he did with our business meetings. He danced, moved his hips, and even sang “Hips Don’t Life.” I took his advice and enjoyed the experience. Oh, and the juice (pineapple, mango, apple, and orange): It was delicious.
Check out our video interview to learn his workout details plus he shows me his favorite exercises and how he makes his healthy juice:
Nathan Sykes is following in the footsteps of Justin Timberlake and Nick Jonas. They both evolved from massively successful boy bands to heartthrob solo artists. Making that transition is not an easy one. Many have tried and failed but Nathan will not fall into that category.
Born with an incredible musical talent, he started signing when he was six years old. By the age of ten, he was winning local competitions. He joined the British boy band The Wanted when he was 16. I had the pleasure of working with the band for a few years. We shared a lot of fun memories (including adventures in London, NYC, LA, San Diego and Las Vegas) and big success. Their first single, “Glad You Came” went all the way to #1 here in the US. I watched as they went from being unknown to heartthrobs.
Nathan is now launching his first solo project and has a powerhouse team behind him (Global Entertainment). He is incredibly talented and really fun to hang out with so I am thrilled I get to also work with him on his new project. The first single is a fun uptempo song called, Kiss Me Quick. Recently, while he was doing a bunch of press for the new song, we grabbed a few minutes to find out his healthy secrets and all about his new music.
You can watch the Rockstar Health & Fitness video interview here:
There are so many perks to living in Los Angeles. We literally have a year round urban gym and the weather is almost always beautiful. We can go from hiking in the mountains to bike riding at the beach to exploring the desert to power shopping downtown all within a quick drive. Last week we […]
I will never forget the first conversation I had with Jared Leto. We originally met in 2008 when I was working with his former management company, The Firm. We were in NYC and I took him to do a radio interview at Z100. He had just finished filming the movie “Chapter 27” where he played Mark David Chapman, the man who killed John Lennon. He had to gain 60 lbs for the role and it was the details of how how he did it that hauntingly stayed with me. He told me he he would set his alarm in the middle of the night to wake up so he could eat cereal, ice cream and pizza. He would eat so much that he would have to sleep propped up with pillows or in a recliner so the food wouldn’t give him excruciating heartburn. He got so sick from the weight gain he could barely walk, and would use a wheelchair to get around the set. He developed gout and said his body was continually in pain. He felt toxic, lethargic and depressed. It was a quick dose of reality to see how miserable life can be if you don’t take care of yourself. Which we know is a conscious choice.
It is important that Jared operate at the top of his game so we can all enjoy his multi-talented abilities. Jared is one of the biggest rock stars in the world as the lead singer/guitarist for the band, Thirty Seconds to Mars (who recently I had the pleasure of working with again). In addition, he is such an incredible actor that in March 2014 he won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his role in the movie “Dallas Buyers Club.”
Jared recently released a documentary called “Artifact” that is a must see! It is a true story of how his record label tried to sue his band for 30 million dollars, and they document the entire process. Having grown up in the music business, this movie was especially fascinating to me and I knew everyone that was interviewed. It’s a modern day David and Goliath story. It also inspired their latest album Love, Lust, Fatih + Dreams, which had 3 big radio hit singles (including my favorite “Do or Die”). You can find the movie on Netflix, iTunes or Amazon, and I highly recommend it.
After our initial conversation about the horrors of his weight gain, I couldn’t WAIT to now learn his healthy secrets. The first secret he shared with me was that he loves to workout in nature. That is something we have in common, which explains why we frequently run into each other hiking in the Hollywood Hills. There is something incredibly powerful about exercising outdoors. You can easily reconnect with your center by taking in the beauty all around you… which is also a form of mindful meditation. His favorite outdoor activities are hiking, and snowboarding. He gets the majority of his workout running around on stage while Thirty Seconds to Mars is performing. He is known for his high energy performance that includes climbing up poles and practically hanging from ceilings. Meditation is also something he practices regularly. This allows him to maximize his creative genius and continue to evolve as an artist. Which is something else we have in common, meditation is one of the most game changing aspects of life you can practice. It will take you to a whole other level you didn’t know was possible. Some of the most successful people I have met have a strong meditation practice. Jared is a big fan of using the app for meditation called Headspace.
When it comes to his diet, Jared is a vegan, or as close as he can get. I found another common thread in our healthy lifestyle secrets. “It’s all about moderation” he told me. Clearly it’s working for him, in 2014 he was named PETA’s World Sexiest Vegetarian. I found it ironic, when the band was recently on tour with Linkin Park and it was called the “Carnivore Tour” which thankfully included a vegan chef backstage. HIs favorite foods are popcorn, vegetables, and he loves hot chocolate with almond milk.
We met on a wild adventure in India. The irony is we live a mile apart in LA, but destiny had our paths crossing nearly 10,000 miles away from home. As we shared our life-changing journey exploring the Taj Mahal, Varanasi, and Delhi, I discovered she was a top fashion designer. I was already well aware of the famous dresses from her line, Black Halo. One of Hollywood’s best-kept secrets, her clothes are designed to make you look five pounds thinner and two inches taller with her expert cuts and high-end material. They are the perfect “day-to-dinner” or “boardroom-to-bar” dresses because they are elegant, yet powerful and sexy.
Needless to say, my closet is now packed full of her designs, and I receive more compliments on her clothes than any of the other designers I wear. I heard the best compliment last week when I was in NYC wearing her cobalt blue, Jackie O dress. A gentleman approached me and said, “That dress is stunning and just screams, ‘You’d better have serious game to even approach me’.” I laughed and immediately texted Laurel to tell her it should be the tagline for Black Halo’s newly launched line of evening dresses, Black Halo Eve by Laurel Berman.
Since traveling through India together, Laurel has become one of my best friends—so I know firsthand how committed she is to a healthy lifestyle. Her favorite workout out is yoga, which she practices four to five times a week; she also rollerblades for four hours every other Saturday. When she travels, she visits her favorite yoga spots in each city, and sometimes sends her rollerblades on ahead to her hotel so she can cruise through Central Park or Golden Gate Park and enjoy the outdoors.
Her Favorite Yoga poses
Humble Warrior: Because she loves forward folds—and this one is more active. She drops her head to release the tension in her neck and shoulders anytime stress begins to build; when needed, she even deepens the release by adding eagle arms to the forward fold. She told me the stretch is amazing. I just tried it and she’s right!
Tumbling Tree: I love the name of this pose, which is basically moving from Warrior 3 to standing splits without falling. She loves the balancing aspect of the pose, and says that when the body is in balance, it colors every aspect of your life, creating balance throughout.
Laurel loves the transitions in her practice, the poses between the poses. She focuses on the breath to keep them smooth and purposeful without falling out of the pose during exit and entry. This represents another skill that helps her in her daily life…flowing smoothly through life’s transitions is easier once you master it on the mat. The main reason why she loves the practice of yoga is how it benefits the mind; having more control over her thoughts and emotions—not letting them run wild helps in her fast-paced professional and personal life. She moves through life with grace and style thanks to her yoga practice, healthy lifestyle…and great wardrobe!
One of the best parts about the holidays (& life in general) is spending time with people you love. That is true soul food. It’s so great to catch up with family and dear friends or maybe stopping by to visit a neighbor. It’s fun to share thoughtful gifts and create new memories. In my family, we spend a lot of time in the kitchen cooking and laughing. Luckily, we are an active bunch so there is always some sort of exercise and outdoor playing around.
My favorite way to workout is listening to great music when I am exercising. When I was teaching KIIS-FM yoga on the pier series, I was well known for my incredible playlists. Which is why iHeart Radio asked me to create a workout playlist for my Rockstar Health & Fitness radio station. It is so fun to combine my favorite things: exercise and music.
My playlist has so much good music that I guarantee you will hear songs you love regardless of your format preference. You will hear current hit songs like Taylor Swift, “Blank Space”, Hozier “Take Me to Church”, Lindsey Stirling “Shatter Me”, Fall Out Boy “Centuries” to great hip hop from Tupac or Big Sean to Classic Rock from Ozzy Ozbourne or Van Halen to some incredible surprise songs that will definitely put a smile on your face. More importantly it will motivate you to move your body and add a fun element to your workout. Inspiring you to burn those extra calories we always consume around the holidays. Remember, “it’s not a choice, it’s a lifestyle”
CLICK HEREto check out my updated workout playlist.
I love living in Los Angeles. It’s an amazing city and very conducive to living a healthy lifestyle. We have the best urban gym at our front door, and the weather allows us to exercise and play outside year round.
We also have great yoga studios in LA with yoga being part of the culture. There are many options to choose from, and I love supporting the smaller local studios. I recently found a new one…and love it. It’s called Agni Yoga, and is in Hollywood. I have been practicing with the owner, Ashley Cummings, for a few years and am really enjoying her class. Now that she has her own studio nearby, I get to practice with her more often.
The studio is filled with incredible energy and lots of positive messages: including a variety of Buddhas, Ganeshe…and friends. Her class is strong and has just enough of a spiritual element to take you deeper into your yoga journey, allowing you to transform along the way . She plays good music, too (and I am picky when it comes to the right music being played in a yoga class!). According to Ashely, “Agni Yoga is a spiritual center for transformational fire and love. The heat and fire is to burn away aspects, ideas and conditions that are no longer serving us.
The word Agni is a sanskrit word related to fire and heat, but with a spiritual connotation. To ignite your Agni, is to ignite your spiritual fire, and to be alive spiritually is to be open to the ultimate truth of pure love, pure consciousness and perfect present moment awareness.”
My favorite part is during shivasana when she plays the singing bowls. This is incredibly powerful and allows you to go deep in your meditation. The vibration of the singing bowls has a healing power, and helps realign your chakras. They recently had a sound bath restorative yoga class on a Friday evening that was spectacular. Included: were a serious of gongs, singing bowls, ocean drums, rain sticks and chimes, all synchronized…while we did restorative yoga poses. It was pure bliss. Definitely, check out her studio and class…..it’s so worth it!
Some people are blessed with a talent that seems to come from another world. Since I have been fortunate to work in the music business, I get the opportunity to meet people with this type of talent. Recently, I’ve been working with the incredibly talented musician, Lindsey Stirling. Lindsey is a violin player, the type of artist you want at your party… and to hang out with on weekends.
A few things to know about Lindsey….she has more YouTube subscribers than Katy Perry or Justin Timberlake, with over 730 million views. She had the #1 debut album on it’s release week….plus, she sells out tours around the world, and has the ability to make the violin sing directly into your soul.
We are currently promoting her new single “Shatter Me” (featuring Lzzy Hale from Halestorm on vocals) at radio. Having spent a lot of time with Lindsey, I have identified a couple of reasons why she is connecting to the public on such a massive scale: First, her unbelievable talent and second, the interviews she gives inspire me. The combo of talent and inspiration is certainly working!
After she was publicly humiliated on national TV a few years ago, she never gave up, and came back to prove her critics wrong. Lindsey is living proof that the power of believing in yourself, despite the critics, will take you to a life beyond your wildest dreams!! She also is incredibly healthy and lives a clean, toxic-free lifestyle. Find out what she told me about her healthy secrets, here…on another Rockstar Health & Fitness Extra:
I have been a fan of Iggy Azalea for years. I worked with her at Island Def Jam in the early days, and we were recently able to spend time together while out promoting her music. I have always been amazed at how her body is in such amazing shape and couldn’t learn her healthy secrets fast enough!! She definitely helped me get me ready swimsuit season by telling me about the squat challenge.
When I first did the challenge, I hated it. I couldn’t believe how hard it was to not only do squats everyday but to do them by increasing amounts! After I saw the results in my legs and glutes, I kept doing them. Now they are part of my regular workout routine. I do squats a few times a week, and have found that I enjoy them (well not when I’m actually doing them but like how they make me feel stronger…and look better in a swimsuit!). Iggy also loves to play tennis. She inspired me to sign up for classes again, which I am doing this month.
I am so happy she finally had her break thru success with “FANCY,” as I have always believed in her amazing talent.