Elle Landgren, the founder of Elle Fit Active, has gained an enormous following on social media (@Elle_Fit), and rightfully so! This self-taught yogi started out stretching to ease her pain from scoliosis. Shortly after feeling the benefits of daily stretching, she transformed her pastime into a full-on brand. Over the past couple of years, Elle has developed and shared numerous e-guides on basic stretching practices. Her intent is to help others reap the benefits of stretching by giving them the opportunity to connect with mind and body, relieve pain, gain flexibility and increase their quality of life. If you need a little inspiration for trying something new, overcoming a health obstacle or just getting up and moving, look no further than Elle Landgren!
Qualifications: Certified & Registered 200 hour Yoga Teacher, Certified ACROVINYASA Teacher, Chair Yoga Teacher, completed courses in Mindfulness Coaching and Assisting & Adjusting.
When asked what you do, what do you say?
- Lots of STUFF! As well as being the creator of Elle Fit Active, I am a uni student, stretching and yoga lover, surfer, list maker, lover of being outdoors, Instagram addict – the list goes on!
You started practicing yoga as a means to an end to help with sciatic pain from scoliosis, how has your practice shaped you into the person you are today?
- I rarely look back and actually think about this but it’s incredible the journey I’ve been on in the past three years. Stretching and practicing yoga postures is like a gateway drug to exploring your mind on a completely new level. You become so in tune with your body and so aware of your mind – something I don’t think you can experience in anything else. There are lots of workouts out you can do to keep physically fit or mindful classes you can take but not really anything else that combines the two.
- I am so much more content with where I am and who I am as a person since discovering what I’m passionate about – and that isn’t necessarily my job, I’m simply passionate about living well and whatever that might encompass. It has allowed and continues to allow me to pay attention to what I enjoy, what I do and don’t want in my life, how my thoughts affect how I feel and what I experience. The practice of true ‘yoga’ is for everyone and can be done with anything. The things you become in tune with can flow on to every area of your life.
- With nutrition, I think it’s important to figure out what works for your body – which is different for everyone. I love to think about ‘adding good food’ rather than cutting out bad food, that way I have a positive relationship with eating and nourishing my body. I think living well really comes down to working on yourself and paying attention to your mind. When you can get a handle on how your thoughts affect everything you do – you can really live and create the life that you want.
What does living out your practice mean to you?
- We can set aside 10 mins to meditate or practice yoga for an hour but I think ‘living out your practice’ means offering the same attention to the rest of our lives as we do in those moments. I struggle with it a lot but the more and more I can catch myself making unconscious decisions and getting carried away with chatter in my mind, the more control I have over my life.
- Be kind to yourself. If people have never done yoga, I think there is an idea that it is easy and relaxing. But a lot of the time it cracks you open and reveals some pretty intense emotions. Do your best to practice without judgment, be kind to yourself and enjoy it as much as possible. I wrote a blog post about ‘how to make your practice more peaceful’ which explores this more.
What is your favorite way to stay fit?
- Doing anything that I enjoy. I used to run long distances because I thought it was a good way to be fit but after years of cross-country training when I was younger I didn’t enjoy it as much anymore. Now I love keeping fit by doing things I love – yoga, surfing, weight training, boxing, walking the dog.
- I’m coeliac and predominantly dairy free so everything I eat is gluten and dairy free. For breakfast I alternate between a gluten free ‘porrij’ with banana and honey, muesli and almond milk, eggs and avocado on gf toast and either a green smoothie or a veggie juice. I like to have filling meals in the morning to get me started – so this is when I prefer to have higher carb foods. Lunch is often leftovers from dinner the night before because I usually can’t be bothered preparing another meal. Dinner is usually some sort of protein and veggies or salad. I love Japanese too so I probably have sushi a couple of times a week or salmon and rice. If you’d like more specific examples of what I eat you can check out this blog post:
Who do you admire in the health and fitness world? And in general?
- I admire anyone that leads a healthy lifestyle, follows their passion, helps people and lives in an authentic way. People like Novak Djokovic are very inspiring – his dedication to training, stretching, diet and mindfulness definitely make him a deserving world number one.
What is the best experience you’ve had in your career so far?
- Since launching Elle Fit Active, the most amazing highlight would be all of the incredible people I’ve had the chance of connecting with. The people that follow my journey and interact on social media and those who take the time to email me and tell me how they’re going. Hearing that I have helped change someone’s life is the most humbling and special feeling. Something I never expected or thought I could do, simply by going along my journey and sharing what I’ve learned with others.
- I’ve had some great and fun opportunities too. Recently I attended an Adidas event and got to take around 150 people through a warm up on a rooftop overlooking the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Working with brands I’ve always loved is pretty cool. But interacting with people and feeling a sense of community is by far the coolest thing!
How do you balance your professional life and your personal life?
- I’m lucky that my personal and professional life is really one in the same. Elle Fit Active allows me to do the things I love to do and share this with people all around the world. I just make sure to take time out from work (a lot of time spent on the computer) and spend time with my family – like taking our dog for a walk at the beach most afternoons. Quality time with the people I love is important to me and I probably need to try and squeeze in a lot more of it.
Do you have anything exciting coming up in this next year?
- Always! I have lots of projects in the pipeline for Elle Fit Active that I’m excited to keep working on. I won’t spoil the surprise or make any promises for when they’ll be finished, you’ll just have to keep an eye out.
Where can readers get your guides?
- Get Bendy, Get Split & Get Inverted are all available on my website.
- Get Bendy is a back to basics all over stretching guide to clear your head, improve flexibility and feel better.
- Get Split is a comprehensive lower body stretching guide to relieve pain and focus on lower body flexibility – also includes how to do front, middle and standing splits.
- Get Inverted is a challenging and fun guide to arm balances and inversions.
I hope you enjoyed this interview with Elle! She’s a perfect example of how to turn something that most would see as a barrier into something extremely positive. Let her inspire you to focus on the positive and work towards your goals, whatever it may be! Don’t let anything stop you!