Behind every rock hard celeb stomach and perfectly toned model limb is a personal trainer with their own specific spin on the perfect workout. Some root their regimes in boxing, others are straight sports science, and a small handful—like Anna Kaiser—utilize their experience as an ex-professional dancer to create an optimal fitness routine that cumulatively elongates, tones, and trims. This technical background has gone on to form the basis of the trainer’s Anna Kaiser Technique workouts which are taught in her AKT gyms in New York—and it’s something that she has in common with one of her most famous model clients, Karlie Kloss who practiced dance for many years. Anna describes her rhythm-based workouts as “high intensity, functional movement, that can be tweaked to fit everyone’s individual needs,” and using it she’s helped hone a wide-ranging variety of well-known figures like Sarah Jessica Parker, Kelly Ripa, and Shakira—who she first got to know when she was a backup dancer in the video for the singer’s 2009 hit She Wolf.
Anna completes a full workout with her personal clients one-on-one while they’re at home in Manhattan or guides them virtually when they’re on the road. Here, she breaks downs her most common fitness do’s and don’ts and explains how she keeps models like Karlie in tip-top shape all year long:
What defines an AKT workout?
“AKT is a 360 degree program. The workouts change every two to four weeks so that my clients have the ability to build and get stronger without ever getting bored. I create nine varying classes within each rotation, so there will be workouts centered around dance, high intensity cardio, endurance-based cardio. pilates, barre, power yoga, and sports conditioning. I also take my clients photographs and measurements every two weeks so that they can see how their body is transforming.”
What does a typical workout with Karlie look like?
“Karlie is an incredible client because she’s always with you 150%, even if she’s jet-lagged and exhausted she never gives up. She grew up studying dance, so she has the most incredible natural form and knows how to move her body in the most intuitive way. She likes to switch it up a lot, so some days we’ll work on some really challenging movements with an 8-15lb weight in each hand or we’ll focus on her speed with a challenging dance sequence. On other days, we’ll focus a lot more on her core strength using movements that originate in Pilates.”
How do you train her while she’s on the road?
“I’ve made an app called AKT On Demand which she uses all the time. It has over 2000 minutes of workouts and has an option to practice live with a trainer giving feedback on your shape and form. The workout range from ten minutes to an hour, with or without any gear, so there’s never any excuse to not squeeze a little bit of fitness in.”
How do you keep your clients motivated?
“I’m not the type of trainer to just stand around shouting instructions: If I ask you to do it, I’ll do it with you. I believe that kind of positive energy makes people excited to workout and helps drive quicker results. That way, there’s no self-loathing if you have a couple of off weeks or take a vacation—an environment of positivity will make you excited to get back to the gym.”
What’s the best music to workout to?
“My approach to fitness means that we use our bodies like physical djs, so I love to choreograph absolutely everything to music. It changes everyday, but my current playlist features a lot of Bruno Mars, Drake, Alicia Keys, Jackson 5, and Notorious B.I.G.”
How important is diet in achieving maximum fitness results?
“There’s no one size fits all solution, so I also try to keep in mind what kind of background and lifestyle all of my clients have and tailor a food program to their specific needs. I want to create healthy, long-lasting relationships with food for everyone, so that means that I don’t believe in self-deprivation, but that I do believe in portion control. Diet is about 70% of the equation if you’re working out and want to see maximum results, so that means smart choices and knowing the difference between a salad for 200 calories and half a slice of pizza for the same amount.”
What’s your daily schedule?
“I don’t have a typical one because every day is different, but I usually get up at 6.30am and see my first personal client at 7.30am. For example, this morning I jumped into an hour session with Kelly Ripa before she had to film something for TV. I like to film new content for the app in the afternoon and try to get home by 8.30pm to have dinner with my husband. I’m sure some things will change after I give birth, but I will definitely be bringing my newborn to work with me!”
What’s your general fitness advice for other moms-to-be?
“I’m still working out four to five times a week, but I didn’t know how hard it was going to be. Sometimes your body feels exhausted and nauseous, but doing a light workout will actually help to alleviate those symptoms—you just have to motivate yourself to get to the gym. I don’t want people to use being pregnant as an excuse to not workout, because you need to be strong to have and care for a baby and the less you workout, the longer it will take you to recover. It’s more about allowing yourself the time to move a little slower and to adjust your new shape. I also like to take a very slow approach to regaining pre-baby figures. The earliest you can really feel 100% is six months, but it can take up to two years.”
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createdAt:Wed, 22 Mar 2017 14:39:11 +0000