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  • Ornagh Lee / Q&A

    29th January 2017

    29th January 2017

    By Shivraj Bassi

    Ornagh is a coach on the Crossfit European Gymnastic seminar team and widely regarded as being the premier CrossFit specific Gymnastics coach in Ireland. We sat down with her to find out about her philosophy on health and fitness, and whether she had any vices!

    "I was a gymnast as a child and love anything that involves being able to tumble, stretch, move your body and be strong. I found Crossfit when I lived in America and fell in love with it. It had so many cool, fun elements for any level of fitness. I began working on the Crossfit Gymnastics staff and got to travel around Europe teaching and learning. These days I have my own studio where I focus on building people's strength and mobility to improve their quality of life! I'm a strong believer that getting in shape shouldn’t be a punishment. It’s an amazing and empowering lifestyle decision that anyone can achieve. While there may be a sore muscle or two along the way, the amount of fun and levels of energy you will experience will far exceed the discomfort. My advice to anyone reading this is to discover and appreciate what your body is capable of. You might surprise yourself!

    Favourite Innermost products, and why?

    The Fit Protein because I'm into CrossFit and having a blend that contains the right electrolytes, superfoods and protein to gets me properly refuelled after an intense workout is brilliant. The Energy Booster to keep my myself energised during a workout and to ensure I'm getting the right branched chain amino acids to fuel me properly as I go through my movements.

    What's your hustle?

    I make people stronger and flexible. I want people to learn how to move their bodies correctly and to discover what they're capable of.

    What do you do to maintain a healthy lifestyle?

    I like to keep my days varied. Working is important but I also need to unwind at the end of the day. I usually take a stroll by the sea in the evening to reflect on the day and breathe in the fresh air. 

    What does #liveinnermost mean to you?

    Your body is the best instrument you'll ever own. Learning to love it and see what it's capable of is fascinating. Don't fixate on how you look and instead take pride in what you can do no matter how big or small.

    Usual breakfast?

    Without fail, I start my day with scrambled egg whites, Piccoli tomatoes, half an avocado and a coconut milk latte!

    Biggest health vice?

    Chocolate and cakes and chocolate and cakes! I love to bake and have the worst sweet tooth in the world. I have to really limit myself and it takes a lot of work. 

    Your last workout?

    I spent time practicing tempo muscle-ups on the rings as part of my gymnastic strength training. And then did some rowing (cardio is not my forte).

    What's on your bucket list?

    Machu Picchu! I'm lucky to have seen some amazing parts of the world but this has been somewhere I've been craving to see for a long time. I'm planning to get there some time soon. 

    Favourite inspirational quote/words?

    "I know nothing with any certainty but the sight of the stars makes me dream" - Vincent Van Gogh. He's my favourite artist. I even have the quote tattooed on my body. To me, the quote means that no matter what uncertainties there are in life, you can look at the vastness of the world and let yourself dream of all the endless possibilities ahead. 

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

    I want my to build my own facility, I have a dream design and it keeps me motivated everyday to work hard!

    Want to hang with Ornagh a little more? Check her out on Instagram (@ornagh_morechalk) and her website (www.morechalk.com).

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    Finding Balance and Inner Peace with Brin McKinnon
    This month, we sat down with Innermost Insider Brin McKinnon to discuss inner peace, managing conflict and maintaining balance. Representing us in Australia, Brin is a true Innermost Insider, having loved our products since she was a London native. Funny, thoughtful and eloquent, even with the 11 hour time difference making the interview 1am for her; this one's definitely worth the read. Hey Brin! Tell us about yourself! Hi, my name is Brin, and I am currently studying a Bachelor of International Relations at the Australian National University, whilst also working as a management consultant and freelancing. I've been using Innermost products since 2018 when I used to live in London, and since then they’ve been my favourite products, specifically in terms of vegan products. I then became an ambassador this year, because I wanted to share my love of Innermost products with other people. My favourite platform at the moment is my YouTube channel where I actually recently spoke about Innermost and the products I’ve been loving. View this post on Instagram A post shared by B r i n 🌱 (@brindarcey) Our theme this month is peace. So, the first question I want to ask is, what does peace mean for you, in your own life? A lot of the time in the health and wellness industry, the focus is on the physical and specifically on aesthetics, but I think that it’s really important to understand our health as something that's part of a bigger whole. It’s not just physical - it’s mental too, and that’s why, personally, peace is such a big thing for me, mental-health wise. Mental health is such an important part of our overall wellbeing and I think finding peace is really central to looking after your mental health. I wouldn't say I'm naturally a peaceful person but it’s a process to find that sense of inner-peace and maintain it. What process do you undertake to cultivate your inner peace? What steps have you taken? Over the last few years, I've definitely been taking steps to improve my relationship with myself and I suppose, in a way, to relax a little. As I mentioned, I think that it's definitely a process, and how you cultivate inner peace depends a lot on the individual. For me, a lot of that is spending time in nature, taking walks and exercising outside. I also think that meditating can also be useful, but I think that something that can dissuade people from meditation a bit and definitely dissuaded me was the idea that there’s only one way to meditate. But I think that just finding something that's meditative to you can be really useful in cultivating inner peace and it doesn’t have to be sitting down with your eyes closed. It can be spending time outside with your family or your friends, or even just watching a television show that makes your mind switch off for a bit. The first step to cultivating inner peace is finding what brings you peace. How do you make peace with your mistakes or regrets? I think that I'm quite lucky because I'm naturally quite good at letting things go and I don't necessarily regret things. So unfortunately, that's not going to be helpful for everyone. But I think that, for anyone, letting yourself come to terms with your emotions and letting yourself feel those emotions, is the most important step in making peace with them. However, I also think it’s then important to not hold on to those negative thoughts and feelings for too long. Once you’ve let yourself feel those emotions, you then need to accept them. A lot of the time your ego can get in the way of this step, but you need to be humble and say “okay, I've made a mistake”, perhaps get advice from friends or family and then just take time to reflect on yourself. In the end, the most important step is letting go; it's so important to accept and then move forward, otherwise we let things that we've done in the past continue to hold us back in the future. Is there anything that disrupts your peace and how do you manage it? I’m a person who doesn't necessarily enjoy change. So any small thing that happens in my day could completely derail how I'm feeling and that's something I'm definitely working on. But as I mentioned, it's a process. It's not going to happen overnight. The way I deal with this is not over-committing, organising, scheduling and planning things, but also respecting that things change and that's okay. In addition to this, I've also been going to therapy for a few years and I think that's been really important for me as well. Therapy is typically seen as something just for people who are deeply suffering with their mental health but, I think that therapy can be for everyone. It's just a really useful tool to break down the way that you think and the way that you approach situations that can derail your inner peace. And its been really important for me in my journey to protecting my peace from those day-to-day disruptions. How do you manage conflict with other people? I think that these last few years have been particularly emotionally challenging for everyone. So I think that an increase in interpersonal conflict is something that's inevitable. I'm definitely naturally quite a combative person and I'm anxious-avoidant in my relationships, so I have felt this in my life too. Whilst I do think that it's important to stand up for yourself and for what you believe in, I also think that approaching people with respect, openness and honesty is the best way forward when you're having a conflict with someone. Of course, not all interpersonal conflict is going to be fixable but that's okay. Sometimes we need to let relationships go as well. Beautiful you’ve been open and honest with people then you can move forward knowing you don’t regret how you’ve handled the situation. View this post on Instagram A post shared by B r i n 🌱 (@brindarcey) Do you feel like your nutrition is important in being in that good headspace? Absolutely. I think that nutrition is incredibly important. There’s a massive connection between your physical and mental health so eating a balanced diet is really important. I don't believe in restricting certain food groups, because I think this can actually disrupt your peace. However, I think by listening to your body and viewing nutrition as fuel rather than something to be labelled good or bad, you can make nutrition benefit your peace. For example, for me eating protein is really important because I'm vegetarian. I find it easiest to do this by using a vegan protein, so it’s about finding ways to make nutrition work for you. I actually think that finding balance in our lives is probably the best way to cultivate inner peace, across the board. We can't always strive for perfectionism but I don't think we should be happy with mediocrity either. We need to be somewhere in the middle; striving to do the best for ourselves in the moment that we're in. That’s where you find peace. To keep up with Brin, check out her Instagram! Read more
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