Radiance Experts: Christina Howells
by Rosie Guest,
We've known personal trainer Christina Howells for several years now. She has made it her business to become an expert in training women's bodies. Recently she has teamed up with fashion sportswear designer Charli Cohen to launch That Girl London, a series of online workouts and nutrition plans. Here, she tells us more about it.
How would you describe “That Girl” to those who haven’t heard of it before?
That Girl is a new online fitness concept designed by women for women. There are two core programmes a year in line with London Fashion Week and additional monthly workouts. Members also receive a menu plan and tips for eating on the go. Blog posts from our favourite collaborators will also offer members advice in areas such as exercise footwear, functional foods, menu planning and juicing.
What made you launch “That Girl”?
Charli and I met on Twitter last November and instantly decided to collaborate on a project. My brand is exclusively for women and offers one to one training with myself. Charli, as well as designing high-end sports wear for women, also offers online training which is an area I wanted to move into so it was a match made in heaven. Now we are able to offer our skills and knowledge to a huge international audience and grow a global “That Girl” community.
Can you give an example of the type of exercise involved in “That Girl”?
Yes! Below is the gliding lunge pattern. This is my personal favourite working the entire leg musculature whilst incorporating balance, co-ordination and flexibility.
Stand with feet together and arms by your side
1) Step the left leg out to the side in a lunge position, so the left knee bends at 90 degrees, as you sit the hips backwards. The right leg remains straight with your heel firmly on the floor
2) The left arm reaches up and gently back to open the chest whilst the right hand reaches towards the left shin
3) Step the legs back together and repeat the movement stepping diagonally backwards, following the same arm pattern
Repeat 8-12 times on each leg.
What does your daily diet look like?
I start the day with hot water and ginger. Then I make a shake with 1 scoop of Chocolate Sun Warrior protein, a large handful of blueberries, 100g of spinach, half a teaspoon of Organic Burst Spirulina and a teaspoon of maca with Jax coconut water and water. If I am not working, I either have an egg white omelette or yoghurt with pomegranate and chia seeds and a vegetable juice on the side - I love beetroot, kale, celery, spinach, cucumber and more spirulina! I normally grab a double espresso or green tea en route and for lunch it's salad with chicken, salmon or tuna, half an avocado and 3-4 tablespoons of quinoa plus a green juice with celery, cucumber, spinach, kale and lime.
I usually train between 2pm - 4pm. After training I have a protein bar. At 8pm I always eat some green vegetables, especially spinach, kale and broccoli, with white fish. I eat a fillet steak once a week.
My usual snacks on the run are coconut yogurts, natural 2% fat total yogurts (this is the only dairy I eat) or raw coleslaw salad with a few walnuts. I never touch packaged and tinned foods and I don't eat anything which contains an ingredient I can’t pronounce.
What is your own workout routine?
I train hard six times a week. All of the ”That Girl“ plans are based around my favourite moves. I tend to keep cardio to interval training and plyometric and I am a firm believer in using my legs as transport. My conditioning sessions combine body weight training and weights. I am also mad about animal flow.
What is your top tip for keeping the momentum going through the year?
Put your workout in your diary and keep it there. You need to plan ahead when training as it's all too often the thing that gets forgotten. Make it a priority, as it’s your health, wellness and appearance.