Astrid Swan, the LA-based trainer and fitness model, has a host of celebrity clients (including Julianne Hough), and her Barry’s Bootcamp classes are always packed. Thanks to her down-to-earth personality, Swan stands out in an industry often viewed as shallow. She shared how she stays grounded, yet wildly successful, with some helpful tips on becoming more fit and achieving balance.
Family Roots Kept Her “Real”
Even though she became an international model at age 15, Swan attributes her Midwestern upbringing (she grew up outside of Detroit), fused with her mom’s European influence, for keeping her so grounded. Even when she flew home from Europe in between modeling gigs, Swan shares, “I’d have jet lag and my mom would wake me up to clean baseboards. Being tired never worked as an excuse.”
Squats Over Diets
When she was told she had two weeks to lose weight for a modeling gig, Swan turned to fitness and healthy eating instead of starving herself like many of her fellow models. “When I tried that model diet, my skin was terrible and I had no energy,” Swan says.
Inspired by her brother, she continued to work out and eat healthy throughout her modeling career. Her transition from model to trainer started when she shared the gospel of health with others. “I started bringing my roommates up to the gym and taught them that we can actually eat food for dinner, not just drink champagne!”
Honesty Is the Best (Celeb-Client) Policy
Because Swan started out in front of the camera, it helps her better understand the needs of her high-profile clients. They love her because she respects their time and privacy, but also doesn’t try to ingratiate herself to them. “I keep it real with my celebrity clients who are used to being told ‘yes’ and ‘good job,’ no matter what.” If they could stand to work harder, she tells them to step it up.
Swan’s Back-to-Fall Fitness Inspiration: “Don’t let excuses take over your potential. Keep your fitness constant all year just as you do with touching up your roots or cleaning up your cuticles. Just because the seasons change doesn’t mean you have to let your body go under those flannel PJs. Don’t just make resolutions in January — stay consistent.”
Swan’s “No Diet” Diet
– No food restrictions
– Clean eating only
– A little almond butter every day
– Just a bit of chocolate, if she craves it
Swan’s Workout Essentials
1. Mix it up. It’s key to switch up your workouts every day.
2. Foam rolling should be like flossing your teeth. She makes sure she does it every day, even for five minutes while waiting for her coffee to brew.
3. All you need is 30 minutes. She pushes it hard with high intensity workouts such as five sets of 20 wall balls and 20 box jumps, followed by some ab and band work.
4. Keep it heavy. She swears by strength training with heavy weights, emphasizing that the female body is very strong with a high pain threshold. Bonus: muscle speeds up metabolism, which helps significantly as you age.