Everything Louise Thompson did to get the body she has now

Jennifer Savin
·4-min read
Photo credit: Louise Thompson - Instagram
Photo credit: Louise Thompson - Instagram

Fitness enthusiast Louise Thompson has come a long way since first appearing on-screen in Made In Chelsea, having now established herself as a powerhouse businesswoman and influencer on the health circuit. So, who better to advise on all things working out-related (both at home and back in the gym, as doors start to reopen once more)?

At the moment, Louise says her routine comprises of exercising three times a week - a decision that deliberately allows her body adequate recovery time, "I love strength training because it's really slow, it's basically a lazy person's workout and I'm quite lazy, I like to take my time in between sets and load up on weights."

She adds that she'll then do a cardio session for heart health, possibly a HIIT class, and then tries to mix it up with something she's "not so good at" - which at the start of this lockdown was yoga. However, Louise laughs, now that she's a few months into her practice, she's actually pretty decent. "In the beginning I couldn't even do a downward dog though!"

Like many of us, the extra time spent at home saw Louise having to unearth new ways to exercise creatively and when it comes to those essential must-have bits of gear, she feels there's always an alternative if you can't get your hands on the real deal.

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"I'd say 2kg dumbbells (or a range of them if possible) are the most useful things you can have at home, but at the start of lockdown, nobody could get hold of anything because the market blew up," she recalls, adding that she's also a part of MuscleFood's Lockdown Lifting campaign, which highlights how to use items around the house to get prepped for going back to the gym, or to continue mixing up home workouts.

"We encourage people to use household items, a pint of milk as a kettlebell, wine bottles as dumbbells," Louise continues. "You can also load up a backpack with some weights or books, put that on your chest and do a front squat, which is a good challenge."

But her absolute favourite household item to incorporate into a workout? A broomstick (who knew?) or any type of pole. "You can use one with two chairs to a form a kind of pull-up bar, or do an inverted row, or practice things like overhead squats, Bulgarian split squats, all that sort of stuff."

When it comes to staying motivated to workout (something that many of us feel is on the wane right now, especially as life is starting to get busier again), Louise adds that despite always seeming super bubbly and energised during her live online classes, it doesn't always come easy. "There's no one simple solution to keeping motivated," she agrees. "If there was, then everyone would be so ripped or share it! For me, I have to make exercising feel as attractive as possible and I schedule my workouts for first thing in the morning, so that I don't have any time to talk myself out of it."

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She adds that she hasn't worked out in the evening for almost half a year now and that she also chooses to do things she knows she's good at, as well as mixing in those newer challenges (before lockdown that took the form of reformer Pilates). "People don't try out different things, which is why with Trtle [the holistic fitness programme she co-founded] we do fun challenges and weave in things like martial arts or dancing elements – that way people can find what works for them."

Paying for exercise is another way of keeping yourself accountable, Louise shares. "I pay for classes like nidra yoga, which is basically just lying on my bedroom floor half-asleep, but is a form of self-care I'd not usually find time to factor into my day."

As for whether or not she'll be heading back to the gym now that that's an option once more, the wellness warrior reckons she'll be doing a mix of in-person classes ("I've missed my fun Pilates instructor!") and at-home sweat sessions ("It's too convenient not to").

"In the gym, I'll be using audio guided workouts, narrated by Ryan [Libbey, her personal trainer fiancé and Trtle teammate), to keep me on track," Louise adds. "If I go in without a plan, I'll just meander around and waste time. Having a plan on my phone is crucial, but constantly checking it between ab crunches and reverse crunches isn't that efficient, so I'm excited for this new way of training."

Trainers at the ready, everyone!

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