Style News

The Wellness File: An Expert Guide To Kickstarting The New Year

The Wellness File: An Expert Guide To Kickstarting The New Year

Get the new year off to a fighting start with A-list boxing coach Antoine Dunn’s guide to balance, nutrition and staying motivated in 2019.

Part of a new breed of fitness instructor, Antoine Dunn is the A-list boxing coach disrupting the health scene in 2019. An anti-diet advocate who puts hard work and self-respect at the centre of his training ethos, Dunn learned the ropes at New York’s iconic Gotham Gym where he began to develop his own personal style of boxing under the guidance of ex-pros and Muay Thai fighters. After returning to the UK, Dunn started instructing at KOBOX, a boutique boxing gym, where he helped perfect his model sister and Vogue cover girl Jourdan Dunn’s training regime. A huge list of private clients and a lean, strong physique are testament to the power of his laid-back but dedicated approach to fitness as a lifestyle. “I love what I do. I love to see my clients get results, but more importantly I’ve made real life-long friendships with a lot of people. I’ve received some heartfelt messages from members, life-changing ones – they make all the hard work worth it.”

A female model wearing adidas by Stella McCartney leggings and technical top with black chunky trainers
A female model wearing adidas by Stella McCartney leggings and technical top with black chunky trainers

From the stress-relieving properties of throwing a punch to full body workouts and sparring, Dunn’s list of boxing benefits makes a pretty compelling argument for the sport. If you want to be lean, agile, strong and focused, there’s nothing else like it. Laid-back but fiercely committed, his attitude to exercise is refreshingly realistic. “Never make your life revolve around training. All that does is set you up for failure. Make training something you enjoy and you’re already winning regardless of how you look. Like I tell my clients – train hard and be dedicated but most importantly enjoy it. Don't kill yourself if you have a bad meal, life isn’t sweats and dumbbells.”

We caught up with Dunn to get his expert advice on nutrition, balance and improving your routine for the new year. Here, he shows us the ropes.

A female model wearing adidas by Stella McCartney leggings and technical top with black chunky trainers
A female model wearing adidas by Stella McCartney leggings and technical top with black chunky trainers

BEWARE SOCIAL MEDIA

Don’t compare yourself to other people whose bodies are completely different to yours. Focus on your own goals and appreciate your body and what it can do. You have to understand that your body is unique. This year and beyond focus on being you, but better.

QUICK FIXES DON'T WORK

Stay away from quick fix fitness programmes and products. Health and fitness aren’t a sprint – you need to take your time and enjoy the journey. The end goal shouldn't be the day before you go on holiday. It’s a lifestyle, so make training a part of your weekly routine. Do it because you want to, not because you have to. Waist trainers are a waste of time and don’t work. If you want to tone your stomach then you have to work for it and be dedicated.

A female model wearing adidas by Stella McCartney leggings and technical top with black chunky trainers
A female model wearing adidas by Stella McCartney leggings and technical top with black chunky trainers

BE FLEXIBLE WITH YOUR DIET

I wouldn't advise anyone to be completely strict. The reason people tend to fail with their diet is because they set themselves unrealistic goals. If you know that you can't maintain a strict diet, don't do it. Be as careful as you can be without making it a problem. Like fitness, nutrition is a journey and both should be an enjoyable. If your diet is making you feel like a failure because you can't maintain it then it isn’t the diet for you.

A female model wearing adidas by Stella McCartney leggings and technical top with black chunky trainers
A female model wearing adidas by Stella McCartney leggings and technical top with black chunky trainers

THROW THE SCALES AWAY

All they do is make you feel bad about yourself. Measure your achievements in other ways such as your fitness level. If you could previously only do five push ups on your toes and now you can do eight, it shows you’re getting stronger, which is a better achievement than losing a couple of pounds. Try and beat your personal best for a 5K run. It doesn’t matter if it’s by two seconds or two minutes, it’s a valid improvement.

STRIKE A BALANCE

You train for one hour in a 24-hour day. Yes, everything before and after should complement your training but it shouldn't rule your life. Bringing out scales to weigh your food and counting your macros at your best friend’s birthday dinner won’t make you happy or feel motivated. Too much of anything will have a bad effect, so keep your lifestyle balanced and don't feel bad about yourself if you have a glass of wine in the evening.

Photography: Matthew Brann