Posted 26 June 2012 by Interview:

Lori Harder

How/when did you get started training?

As a kid I struggled with my weight. My entire family was over weight and we weren't very active. I was home-schooled part of my life so I was never involved in any sports. I knew at a very young age I wanted more from my life and to feel better! I also knew that every time I ate junk I felt terrible all day. At the age of 13 I started doing my older sisters workout videos and started asking my mom to buy me health magazines, I would read them at every chance I had. I knew I had to learn how to get control over my weight and feelings. This began my lifelong search for fitness knowledge. I joined a gym at 16 and worked out very often but it wasn’t until I was in my mid 20’s that it started to click.

How do you stay motivated?

For me staying motivated is easy because I don’t ever want to go back to the days of feeling sorry for myself. I know I am the only one that can make myself happy, and when you don’t feel good or have the energy to accomplish goals or even do the things required in life, you will never be in a place of fulfillment comfort and self love. Exercise and eating right keeps me felling balanced and sane!

What types of cardio have worked best for you?

I have NEVER been an indoor cardio girl so for me I try to do anything outside! If I am doing any outdoor activities I try to make sure they are done with effort. My cardio of choice is brisk walking. I live on a chain of 3 lakes and each one is 3 miles long and connected to the next. I take a daily morning walk with my husband, Chris and dog, Waffles. Sometimes we take an evening walk just to catch up and get out of the house again. I also jog 2-3 times per week and do sprints when I have events or shoots coming up.

Do you have a favourite healthy recipe?

Yes I do! I love pizza and protein pancakes! Ok, who am I kidding, there is not much I don’t love. You can find those recipes on my website I love to take my favorite foods and make them healthy! This way I never feel deprived.

What does your diet consist of?

Most people may be surprised because I don’t deprive myself. I don’t really have big cheat or binge days by doing this. This lets me have more wiggle room every day and just enjoy more foods. I keep my diet really clean but definitely allow myself sushi, chocolate, wine and carbs. I also use Isagenix all natural meal replacements for 2meals per day and the rest are usually recipes from my website. The meal replacements have changed my life by giving me more time and also allowing me not to think as much about food every second. They are also perfectly balanced to help control cravings. I have not always eaten this way though! It took me years of trial and error to know that I can’t be perfect or go off the deep end and binge all weekend long. I found I was an unbalanced wreck when I would restrict, cut carbs and try to stay closer to a show diet. Now I am very consistent because I know I am allowed to eat what I want in small portions. Obviously if I am prepping for a shoot or show extras get taken out at 3-4 weeks and my workouts get a bit more intense. This is also good because my body responds to taking things out much quicker because it is not used to not having the other things. It’s much easier to manipulate that way and cuts down on my prep time.

How do you deal with cravings for junk foods, sweets and salty food?

I often make a healthier version of what I am craving. I also do not get cravings as bad anymore since I started allowing myself small portions of what I’m craving when I’m craving it. In the grand plan, a few small servings of something is not going to deter your goals, but two long cheat days will!

What are your favourite exercises?

I think I am one of those freaks that loves all exercises, especially the ones that hurt because then I know they are working! But in all honesty I could not live without squats. They work everything, can be done anywhere and have a ton of great variations. I also love creative, functional exercises that work the core, deadlifts and anything that works the back of the leg and booty!

Do you listen to music while you train?

Music is my motivator! Nothing is worse than getting to the gym and seeing your battery is dead! I often find I can’t wait to get to the gym just so I can jam out and get lost in the music. Good music also helps me visualize my goals and keep a positive state of mind. My playlist depends upon my mood, if I am lifting heavy and need to feel like a bad a** I listen to some rock, or if I’m doing some plyo and need to really move my butt, I listen to some fun hip-hop or pop. I have a playlist for every mood. Today I listened to a lot of Pitbull and Nicki Minaj, which made me want to have a dance party, but I did contain myself.

What is your training routine like?

I really love mixing up my training in order to stay interested and keep my body guessing. I lift 3 days a week in the gym and depending on goals I don’t think you need much more than that if you are making your strength training count. I typically choose 8 - 10 exercises with a rep range of 10 - 20 and 3 - 4 sets. I do full body routines with a focus on certain body parts.

For example:

  • Monday will be heavier legs, abs and shoulders.
  • Wednesday is plyo legs or sprints, abs, chest and tris.
  • Friday is high reps for legs, abs, back and bis.

I love compound exercises that keep my heart rate up and use a ton of different muscle groups. I use my rest time for spiking my heart rate with plyo or I do abdominal work. I stay very active outside of the gym as well. I really enjoy taking other classes that push me outside of my comfort zone. I take a 3-mile walk every day and I enjoy jogging 2 - 3 times a week. I also love to throw in a yoga class. My husband and I recently started golf and ballroom dance lessons 3 times a week and will be competing in August!

Do you set short and long term goals?

I always set weekly goals. Depending on what I am aiming for or if I am getting ready for a shoot my goals always change. I am able to eye in the mirror when I am where I need to be for a shoot. Sometimes my goal is as simple as eliminating some extra goodies that have slowly crept in, beating my last workout or forgiving myself a little quicker each time slip up. A lot of my goals are mental because I know that the body will not change until my mind does first. I always try to strengthen my mind and grow more as a person. I like to set goals around how I will feel after they are accomplished rather than how I look.

What are you most proud of?

I am most proud of the fact that I feel I have a talent to see potential in everyone. I truly feel like I am here to inspire and help people find their meaning and reach their full potential and I am so proud that I am good at that! I am also proud that I don’t give up no matter how many times I am told no! No is just our cue to reroute, go back to the drawing board, better yourself and try again! No is never a permanent answer.

Have you had any obstacles or setbacks towards achieving your goal physique?

Absolutely! I think anyone who says no is lying through their teeth! In the beginning I didn’t understand how much food affected my body and mind so I would get very upset that I would workout so hard and never change! I truly had myself convinced that because I came from a heavy family, my genetics would never let me get to where I dreamed of being. This thought made me feel better about my lack of progress. Once I educated myself and truly decided to commit and have two feet in, I started to see
changes. I learned that when I look for excuses to comfort myself I get further behind and hold myself back.

How do you measure your progress?

I think it is so important to have goals and measure progress outside of how you look physically. When my mind is not fulfilled my body is always unbalanced. If I am on track mentally I can start to base my progress on performance and how I feel. I like to feel the accomplishment of a killer workout that I felt I dominated or a run that I felt great energy on and went faster than usual. I try to just do my best for that day because I know that every day your body can feel very different, weak or strong and I can’t get hung up on that!

Who are your favourite fitness models?

I think I may have pulled motivation from every fitness and motivational personality out there! I am really motivated by the multi tasking, entrepreneur, and fitness role models. I am also so inspired by all of the fit moms out there because they balance so much and teach the future generation how be to happy and healthy. I respect and cherish the women who have found their niche, empower women and share it with as many people as possible! I could never name just one since I have hundreds. I am most motivated by my best friends, family, husband and coaches who give all they can and stay healthy!

What supplements would you use/recommend if any?

I use Isagenix and swear by it! I love their Energy and Performance pack. It includes 2-3, meal replacements a month and all of your vitamins and pre and post workout energy and recovery supplements. I have never felt so good in my life. It has completely changed the way I live and made my life so much easier. The best part is that it is all natural, they use the best whey I have found, and it has also helped my clients gain FAR better results as well!

What 3 tips would you give to any woman wanting to get a feminine, CutandJacked physique like yours?

I would say number one is consistency! No matter what happens you need to never give up and get right back on. This is not just about your body. It is all mental. When you exercise, eat right and continue to try to live a healthy lifestyle it will become a habit and you will crave feeling good! When you feel good you are happy and you have the desire to do more with your life!

Next, I would say educate yourself and create an environment that you can be successful in. If you keep your trigger foods around your house you’re going to eat them all! If you go out with Heidi Happy Hour 2 nights a week, you’re not going to be able to say no to those cosmos! Find a support group and understand the beginning is not going to be easy but it will be so worth it!

Last, forgive yourself and others quickly. You are going to FAIL! That is GREAT! Failing means you are trying and learning. Don’t have a cheat day because you had one bad meal. Remember that as you change and progress, your friends may also change. If people say hurtful things to you it is only a reflection of how they view themselves. Stay strong and you will wake up in the life of your dreams before you know it! You can do it if you believe you WILL. It doesn’t matter where you came from, all that matters is that you are taking action to move forward. What you dwell on is what you will get so be sure to keep it positive!

Lori Harder

Born: 12/6/80 Weight: 136, Height: 5’8




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