I am so excited to be interviewing celebrity trainer Kristin McGee! Last week we somehow came across each other on Twitter (I don’t remember how) but when I found out that Kristin was actually the woman on the cover of those MTV Pilates dvds I see at Barnes & Noble all the time, I died. Did you know she’s also helped shaped the bodies of superstars like Tina Fey and LeAnn Rimes?
Around the same time, a fan emailed me and brought to my attention that there are so many bodybuilding, fitness model, and runner’s diets out there…but what about a Pilates-specific one? Seemed like all this was meant to be.
So today I’m going to let you peak inside a celebrity yoga trainer’s diet and fitness routine. Enjoy!
Name: Kristin McGee
Occupation: Yoga/Pilates teacher, Celebrity trainer, model and host
C: I am so excited to be interviewing a Pilates superstar! Now, for those of us reading this blog who may not know of you (yet), can you give us an introduction of yourself?
K: My name is Kristin McGee, I grew up in Pocatello, Idaho and moved to New York to attend NYU acting school in the early 90’s. There, I discovered yoga and I fell in love with it. After graduating, I got my yoga certificate, ACE personal training, AFFA aerobics, and Pilates certificate and starting teaching to support my acting career. In 2002, I choreographed, hosted and led the first ever MTV Yoga DVD and then went on to shoot 3 more yoga and Pilates titles for them. I decided teaching was my main path and I continue to make DVDs, teach group classes, go to people’s homes to train them as well as host as the Pilates Power Gym guest expert on HSN. I’ve been lucky along the way to go on various TV shows, shot spreads and covers for magazines and I am a contributing fitness editor for Health magazine and Fila’s personal performance ambassador. I have to pinch myself every day!
C: Describe yourself in 3 words!
K: 3 words is tough! Can I use 4? Compassionate, Giving, Enthusiastic, Hard Working Perfectionist!
C: How did you get started in Pilates?
K: I was teaching yoga in the gyms at Crunch when they asked me to start subbing Pilates classes (not really knowing the difference!) so I figured I better get my Pilates certificate and learn all about Pilates. I love it and find it is the perfect complement to Yoga.
C: Which celebrity clients have you trained?
K: Steve Martin, Ben Stiller and his wife Christine Taylor Stiller, Tina Fey, Bethenny Frankel, LeAnn Rimes, Claire Danes.
C: Wow!!! Is Tina Fey still funny when she’s trying to hold teaser? ;)
K: She is one of the nicest clients in the world, I really love working with her. She is hilarious but when she is working out, she really focuses. She sent me in on an audition for Kaitlin, the yogaerobics instructor, and I ended up getting it and doing 3 episodes of 30 Rock season 4. Through my teaching, everything came full circle and I was acting (my original goal when I moved to NYC) again! It was amazing.
C: Tell us about your DVDs and how you got started producing those.
K: I was discovered by an MTV producer when I was teaching at a Crunch in midtown. She asked if I had a headshot/resume on me and luckily I did. I love being prepared in the right place and at the right time. The MTV series got me started in the DVD world and I’ve since produced 3 of my own, shot 4 for the Pilates Power Gym and 3 titles for Acacia.
C: Everyone loves the lean Yoga/Pilates physique. How do you maintain such a gorgeous figure?
K: Oh my goodness thank you for the compliment!
C: Let’s begin with food…can you give us a snapshot of your daily diet?
K: Yes, I eat about 5/6 meals a day. I get hungry often but can’t eat too much ever at one sitting. I love starting the day with greek yogurt, walnuts, berries and some fiber one. I have to have one cup of coffee in the morning; but then I move on to green tea or water throughout the day. I always have a mid morning and mid afternoon snack which varies between kind bars or other healthy protein bars, hard boiled eggs, protein shakes, cottage cheese, instant oatmeal, handful of almonds, string cheese, soy nut mix, hummus and carrots, etc. I have salads and protein for lunch or turkey/avocado on ezekial bread, almond butter or peanut butter and jam on ezekial, or a tofu sandwich. I always have an apple at lunch and I love Kombucha! Dinner varies. I love mexican food, I like brown rice sushi, I love salmon, whole wheat pasta, lots of vegetables always, lean meat occasionally, sweet potatoes, thin crust veggie pizza, you name it. I like red wine and dove dark chocolate squares. I also like to freeze lowfat, light or greek yogurts for dessert with some fresh raspberries or blakcberries. In the winter I love swiss miss light hot cocoa. Here’s a great link to my refrigerator: http://www.wellandgoodnyc.com/2011/07/25/refrigerator-look-book-kristin-mcgee/
C: And for fun, your fave “bad food”.
K: Chips and guacamole (but guacamole is healthy). I have to have a square of dark chocolate every night but that’s not so bad either. Hmmm…I guess I don’t think of too many bad foods but maybe once a year a great steak frites at Raoul’s in Soho—the best steak and fries in the world!
C: Now for exercise. Do you only do Pilates and Yoga? And how many times a week do you workout?
K: Oh no! I love pilates and yoga they are my main stays; but I also do cardio mostly high intensity intervals on the moving stairs 2 to 3 times a week depending. I like to get at least one strength training session in a week. I love to ski, play tennis, hike, cycle, dance. I am always interested in trying out new workouts etc. If I had unlimited time and $, I’d be taking classes all day long and trying out new things. But; yoga and Pilates are a must always. I have to admit I work out most days of the week since I walk everywhere in NYC and teach. I just love to move and be active.
C: For someone who wants to get certified in Pilates, which programs do you recommend?
K: I certified with Kelly Kane at the Kane School of Core Integration now called http://kinectedcenter.com/. But there are soo many great programs out there now a days and I think it’s important to find a studio and style that resonates with you and after taking for a while then inquire about their certification program and if they don’t offer one, ask where they certified. Kelly my teacher was Romana certified and at the time I felt I could get so much great information from her. How much time and money should a person be expecting to dedicate? I think there needs to be a fine balance. I continue to study and take workshops as much as I can; but I also need to make a living so I can’t always do every thing I want to. Programs are really costly these days, so make sure you do your research and have the time and $ to spend for the length of the training. You can’t learn Pilates in a weekend and I think it’s important to have practiced for quite some time before deciding to certify. Once you step in to it, realize it will be a life long on going education. Different courses vary in duration and costs so I can’t speak specific numbers.
C: And to close…what are your future goals? In personal and/or professional life. You are so successful already and we want to know where BendiGirl is going next!
K: Thank you I really appreciate the compliment. I would love to host a fitness show and gather professionals and teachers from all over to talk about what they go through day to day and have an open panel discussion like The View but all fitness related topics. I want to have children with my incredible husband; and I would love to keep developing more DVDs pre and post natal more kids videos, more yoga flows and Pilates ideas, etc. I would love to have a Bendigirl club that helps empower young girls and women of all ages to develop a well-rounded, healthy, confident self-esteem. I’d love to do more travel, experience more adventures and continue meeting really amazing inspiring people. Ideally have a home in Idaho where I grew up and see my family more often too!
C: Wow Kristin! I want to thank you so much for sharing your stories with us today. I’m sure all of us here feel very privileged that we got the chance to know you better as an expert, but more importantly as a real person. I look up to you and am inspired by everything that you have done. I love that things have come full circle for you – I totally believe that if you truly belong somewhere, you will get there no matter how long it takes or what challenges you have to overcome. You obviously are in your element 100%. Thank you again, and I hope we can teach Pilates together one day!
Obsessed much? Get more Kristin here: