Natalie Hee is a Fox26 reporter who enjoys trying a variety of workouts across the city- from pilates to barre to hot yoga! On top of all that, she once ran a half marathon cold turkey. Natalie understands the connection between exercise and mental health and credits her workouts with helping manage her stress at work when it gets tough. Keep reading to find out what inspires her and what sports she did growing up:
HFR: What is your daily exercise and nutrition routine?
Natalie: I try to stay away from carbs majority of the time and focus on eating a keto-esque diet. My meals, especially during the week, consist mostly of veggies, protein, and fruit. Cooking meals at least 2-3 times and slowly eating rations throughout the week helps me stay on a healthy track.
If we are out in the field and stopping for food on the road, I’ll opt for a salad option, jerky or nuts. I usually pack fresh fruit and protein bars in my purse just so I always have a healthier snack option available if there’s only fast food available.
I will be the first to admit though that I am not always the most disciplined when it comes to exercising daily. I’m trying to be better about it, especially as I grow older with age and my metabolism isn’t as fast as it used to be. My job certainly keeps me on my feet and active throughout the day, especially compared to other typical desk jobs— which helps. Otherwise, I’ll typically switch between doing cardio sets in the gym, going to barre classes & doing a lot of squats. I am a ClassPass member which helps introduce me to new types of workouts in various parts of the city.
My cardio sets typically rotate between 10-15 min intervals on machines like the elliptical, treadmill, stair master and bike.
Barre is a hybrid workout that combines ballet, pilates, yoga and strength training.
I also used to avidly go to hot yoga, but I avoid that during the summer because I get overheated too easily. Instead, I’ll sit inside a steam room for about 10 minutes after a gym workout to help release additional toxins.
I’m always looking for ways to fit a few more steps in like taking the stairs instead of the elevator or parking farther back in the lot.
HFR: What keeps you motivated to stay healthy?
Natalie: I’ve found that my entire mood and state of mind changes when I eat healthier and exercise. Even squeezing in a quick 20-30 minute run or workout before or after work makes a huge difference, as long as I break a sweat and get my heart pumping. It allows me to address and manage stressful situations (at work or otherwise) in a more calm and collected manner.
Additionally, eating clean & staying active helps me keep lean, feel less bloated and generally makes me feel better overall about my body. And that typically translates to a happier well-being.
HFR: Do you believe that being fit and healthy has contributed to your successful career?
Natalie: Absolutely. We all take our health for granted until it suddenly fails us one day.
Maintenance is key. Being fit and healthy is also correlated to a strong immune system, clearer skin & bolstered confidence.
It’s almost impossible to stay on the grind if you’re getting sick every other week.
HFR: What inspires you, in general?
Natalie: Passionate people that are the ultimate jugglers. They’ve got a successful career, family, baby in one arm, kid in the other, run an investment business on the side, and play 2 instruments. I’m always baffled by how they seem to have more hours in the day than the rest of us.
I’m also inspired by intelligence, compassion, and perseverance.
HFR: What tips would you give your fans and our readers to staying healthy?
Natalie: Staying healthy is a lifestyle. It’s about developing long-term, sustainable habits. I don’t believe that crash diets and quick solutions really work out successfully in the long term. If you constantly work on becoming healthier and make a conscious effort to prioritize that part of your life, it becomes much easier day to day. Choose to eat healthier because you enjoy feeling well after. Choose to exercise because it strengthens you physically and psychologically.
I am a big-picture person so I often make difficult decisions based on this: short-term vs long-term satisfaction.
Example: In the short-term, I will feel happy from eating a kolache, cheeseburger, nuggets, pizza and ramen in the same day. But I know I’m going to wake up tomorrow with a tummy ache and probably feel gross. Long term, I recognize that’s not healthy for me and also way too much food. (Don’t get me wrong: I cave ALL the time)
HFR: Share something that most people don’t know about you!
Natalie: I used to play volleyball and dance ballet for many years of my life growing up. I also once ran a half-marathon cold turkey. Long story…however, I did finish & proceeded to not work out for an entire month after!