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Health & Fitness

EXCLUSIVE Strictly Come Dancing's Kristina Rihanoff: 'I'm most confident on the dance floor'

Strictly Come Dancing star Kristina Rihanoff speaks to Closer about how she stays in shape and exudes confidence

How do you find the energy for all your dance training?

I have always loved dancing, it has been my passion since I was very little. My work means that of course I have to look after myself, especially my diet so I feel ready, light and energised for the long hours.

I have to put in with training and with many live shows. But I live for dance, so it really isn't hard to motivate myself.

What food do you recommend to keep energy levels up?

The right breakfast really is so important to set you off for the rest of the day and can help keep your energy levels up. I regularly start the day with smoked salmon for breakfast, with gluten free toast and half an avocado.

Do you follow a specific diet plan?

I have to be careful with my diet. I previously took a blood test on food intolerances so I know what foods don't agree with me, like dairy, cheese and gluten. My diet consists mainly of seafood and fish as it’s the best form of protein and is full in fish oil.

Kristina with Strictly 2014 dance partner Simon Webbe
But it really is just about eating what is good for you and your specific body. If I want to lose a bit of weight for example, I try not to eat a lot of carbs and sweets, no matter how good they taste! I don’t eat certain foods such as chicken, eggs or pork as they’re some of the things I am intolerant to and I gave up coffee 9 months ago. But I drink a lot of water and peppermint tea!

What do you do to perfect your body before a red carpet event or holiday?

I do a lot of Bikram yoga - which is yoga in a hot room with high humidity. A spray tan, even before a holiday, is always good way to look toned!

What are your top 5 health and fitness tips?

  1. Try to get as much sleep as possible
  1. Water is everything for our body so drink more than you think you should
  1. Exercise to feel good not to look good. The looks will come but you have to enjoy the process of working out to keep yourself motivated. For me, this is why I think dancing is the best way to get in shape as I have such a good time when I’m dancing!
  1. Taking time out for you. I often meet so many people at Champney’s dance breaks who feel that time to enjoy themselves can be underrated. It is important to keep a healthy mindset, as well as a body!
  1. I think any hobby you find fun you should invest time in.

What is your favourite cheat meal?

I love cakes and chocolate! What girl doesn't!

Have you ever had a time in your life when you weren’t happy with your body?

A lot of times - I am actually never really happy with the way I look but I learnt to appreciate what I have. Now I understand that it's actually more important to feel good and be healthy than focus on the outside. Everything comes from within.

You come across as very confident- how do you achieve this?

I'm only really confident on the dance floor. This is where I have learnt to express myself, even from a young age. It's my happiest place - sort of a perfect union of my body, mind and soul, but it's not always like that when I am away from the dance floor. Just as most women do, I have insecurities and I am very vulnerable.

Learn more about Kristina’s Champney’s breaks: www.champneys.com

Closer magazine cover