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  • Community
  • Claire Fountain / Q&A

    5th June 2017

    5th June 2017

    By Shivraj Bassi

    Claire Fountain, otherwise known by her social media handle CB Quality, is a good friend of Innermost and also one of the most exciting yoga talents around today. Her unique approach has garnered her acclaim and interest all over the world. We met Claire for the first time in Shoreditch, London and it's been nothing but love ever since. We decided to sit down and ask her some questions to share her perspectives.

    "I got into yoga after suffering from anxiety and depression as a teen. I didn't want to be medicated and wanted to find a way that I could heal myself. When I first started doing yoga, it opened up a lot of things for me emotionally. I knew it was working for me when my breathing started to improve and I felt more calm in my life. As I got older I realised that there were stigmas and stereotypes in yoga that needed to be challenged. So here I am doing just that! Yoga doesn't have to be precious or perfect and I try to carry that atittude into the way I practice it. My philosophy allows people to workout or meditate in an unconventional space, listen to any genre of music they connect to, and to incorporate their sense of style in what they wear. The ability to express yourself in an authentic and raw way is what I think attracts more than the average yogi to my approach."

    Favourite Innermost products, and why?

    The Health Protein is vegan and delicious. Plus it’s got mushrooms for my brain and glutamine for my body. The Detox Booster contains maca, kelp, and items that balance and nourish me as an active female. 

    What's your hustle?

    Yoga and wellness but also content creation, writing, thought leadership, and using my social platform to share something of substance. But mostly I teach yoga to athletes and beautiful souls who come to my pop-ups.

    Why Innermost?

    I love the brand values and what Innermost stands for. We know what we should do, like working out and eating well, but your mind and soul gotta come first. Innermost focuses on how their products and message can affect people from the inside out is something that sets them apart from the crowd. Plus I love their products, which help me feel amazing.

    What does #liveinnermost mean to you?

    It means living fully and holistically; as if to say it’s not one thing but a balanced collection of moments that make a healthy, whole, and truly rich life.

    Biggest health vice?

    Vice would imply something immoral, eh? In terms of health I’ll take it as that healthy things I like to overindulge in. That would be sleeping, massages, and expensive local salad joints where my appetite knows no limit!

    Current fitness goal?

    Get back on a solid ashtanga yoga schedule of my own. Sometimes, as a teacher, your own practice can take a backseat, and I think that’s a shame. I need to remember who I am and how I got here.

    Where's your happy place?

    The ocean. Floating in salt water.

    Where do you see yourself in three years? Be bold!

    Bold or honest? Probably in a much different space within social media if I’m even still on it. Writing books and curating content from other smart people. Living outside NYC. Maybe a baby. Maybe not. But I do know for certain, I will still be wearing sneakers as formal wear.

    Most physically challenging thing you've done?

    Overcome an eating disorder that almost killed me. But outside that.... Tone House in NYC. It ain’t for the faint of heart.

    What is body confidence to you?

    The ability to show up, in my personal life, where there are no cameras to document or social media posts and be me, totally me, without any urges to cover anything up, hide anything, or manipulate anything.

    Favourite inspirational quote/words?

    Wisdom tells me I am nothing, love tells me I am everything, and between the two my life flows.” - Nisargadatta Maharaj

    Who or what motivates you?

    I want to make the younger me proud. I also think our time here is precious, and I’m motivated not to waste it, like if I have gifts to share, I should share them.

    Favourite healthy snack?

    Dates smashed into slivered almonds. Or, no joke, The Detox Booster and almond milk.

    Message to the world?

    Make decisions out of love, not fear. Seek truth, be brave enough to start a conversation that matters, take action, turn your pain into power (and keep loving).

    Number one reason for taking care of your body?

    Life is precious. This body is precious. And it’s pretty dope to be a strong, capable, and powerful woman.

    Book currently on your bedside table?

    The Antidote: Happiness for People Who Can’t Stand Positive Thinking (Oliver Burkeman) and We Should All Be Feminists ( Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie).

    What would we be surprised to find in your fridge?

    Excessive amounts of jelly and jam, mostly strawberry and blackberry. I love the stuff.

    What did you want to be when you grew up?

    I think I just wanted to be a Woman. Like a "capital W" Woman. Smart, able, compassionate, loved, admired. As I got older that included “writing books.” Seems to be going well… if I could just get that book finished.

    Keep tabs on Claire via Instagram (@cbquality) or her website www.iamtrillyoga.com.

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    Editorial of Neev Spencer looking to the side
    Innermost Insider, Neev Spencer, is probably best known for her positions as a television and radio broadcaster, having found success in her multiple broadcast roles, including her notable award-winning shows on popular UK radio station KISS FM. Having spent years of her career supporting industry-giants on tour, hosting for some of the world’s biggest brands and being the face of some of the UK’s favourite TV programmes, Spencer is also known for making waves with her advocacy for mental health, particularly following her own experiences with postpartum depression since becoming a first-time mum. The subject of mental health is one that Spencer is hugely passionate about, combining her wealth of industry experience with the topic to interview A-List celebrities such as Ed Sheeran on the topic live on air. Having been inspired by her incredible work and dedication to raising awareness surrounding mental health, we sat down with Neev to discuss the reasons behind her passions, her incredible fitness and mental health journey, and all things optimism. Hi Neev! Can you tell us a bit about how you got into your fitness journey? I would describe myself as a yo-yo dieter. My whole life I was never very happy with my weight but never quite took it seriously enough – I would go through phases of trying this and trying that. I would say that it became a very important thing to me when I was pregnant, this is when it became a priority in my life. I wanted to do a lot of pregnancy yoga and wanted to be the fittest I could ever be or have ever been ahead of the birth. A couple of months after my first baby was born, I found out I had an undiagnosed slipped disk in my back – not the kind of surprise that you want when you’ve got a tiny baby to look after. It was horrific. It was an injury that they think happened years before, from DJing – maybe carrying my record bag around, but it was a terrible, terrible surprise. It meant that I was separated from my baby a lot which really impacted my mental health. It was a dark and difficult time, but a time for me to learn so much about myself. I had to have physiotherapy to get walking again and take care of my little one – this is when I learnt about my body in a much deeper way and had a much deeper appreciation for my physical health. After this happened, I was hell-bent on helping people with their mental health, especially pregnant women. I had gone to deep depths and had to rise and swim to the top, and thankfully, I made it. But – not everyone does. This is what motivates me with my charity and mental health. Following his journey, fitness is now something I prioritise and enjoy. Why is fitness so important to you as a woman? As a woman, a lot of us want to be mothers. As a result of this desire, it’s very important that you keep your physical health up there. It’s also really important for our hormones, and our mental health. It’s good to feel proud of yourself! As women we have high pressured jobs – many of us whilst juggling being a mother, being able to create that time for yourself and your preferred exercise method is you and that thing – and that is important. It is for you. What is the one piece of advice you would give to our readers regarding their fitness journey? Listen to your body, and what it is telling you. Don’t just think of fitness in an aesthetic way. I’d love to be able to fit into my jeans before I had children, but you need to take your time. You’ve got to nourish the changes you are making and cultivate it – that’s where Innermost comes in. Those supplements supporting your goal, keeping you maintained and on the right track. What is your greatest life accomplishment? First and foremost, my children. But, I am also immensely proud of the fact that I was the first British-Asian woman to ever get a commercial mainstream radio show. How did you know that you were ready to become a Mother? I had always wanted to be a Mum. I’ve always loved children and after I met my partner I knew that was a priority. We are so grateful that being a parent was able to happen for us – there were many years when this dream seemed very distant, and this struggle really opened up my wellness journey. Being a parent and having gone on that natural journey is a blessing. Can you tell us a bit more about your mental health campaign work? I use my own lived experiences to help relate to other people and help them through what they’re going through. These range hugely – from domestic abuse, to personal struggles: I lost my best friend to drugs and alcohol when I was in my 20s, I suffered depression in my teenage years, and again, as a first-time Mother, when I was separated from my little one, this took a huge toll on my mental health. I’ve found that being honest and sharing how I got through those moments is what drives me to help other people, and that’s why I make it my mission to do as much mental health work as possible. Do you think ‘optimism’ is something that we can learn? Absolutely. It’s something that we have within us naturally – children are very optimistic, they are innocent and joyful. Life really wears us down – experiences, loss, trauma and grief, all of that plays a part in where we begin to lose that optimism. For me, optimism really is faith. I am Sikh, but this faith doesn’t necessarily have to be in God, if you’re not religious. It’s a faith in the greater good. Faith in humanity – that something good is out there. It is the most important thing you can have as a human. What are your top three life tips for staying optimistic? I think the place we are in as a society with the pressures of social media can lead us to forgetting how lucky and fortunate we really are. When you focus on where you are in comparison to someone else, this can be really powerful. It’s important to ground yourself. Get a blessing box. This comes from Tibetan culture and is a way of looking ahead towards your dreams and never give up on your fantasies. This allows you to really focus on what is important. Allow yourself to see the positive sides of life, don’t focus on the negatives. Do you think that optimism affects our physical health, as well as our mental health? Absolutely – without being optimistic you can begin to feel lost. Optimism gives us direction, and we need this grounding to feel at peace. This allows us to feel less anxious and in control. Being able to look ahead to our dreams is a way of us constantly motivating ourselves. Small practices like setting an intention everyday and using this as motivation to keep this together is a great way of keeping your mental health in check. Optimism is the line that lies beneath all of this – regardless of what your intention is.  This is hugely important for our psyche. You can’t have good mental health without good physical health – they work in synergy. Finally, who are your role models? I’d have to say my parents. They are just wonderful. They’ve been through so much, they care for my little brother who has special needs, and even though they have been dealt with unbelievably difficult cards in life, they have always taught me to persevere. They taught me that you must remain kind and compassionate and have really instilled those morals on me. I’m very proud to be their child. Other than that, I would have to say Mother Teresa, the Dalai Lama, Muhammed Ali – anyone that uses their platform and voice to help motivate and change the whole world we live in. That’s what a role model is to me. To keep up with Neev, follow her on Twitter and Instagram.  Read more