Stef Jung is healthy foodie and fitness freak. She had suffered from an ED and was living a rather unhealthy lifestyle before she completely turned it around, using health and fitness as a way to not only heal her body but also her mind. She now openly shares her story and writes about how she lives her wholesome life.
After seeing Stef (known on Instagram as @steffejung or through her blog as WholesomeStef) in the gym for the first time, I soon discovered her accounts on social media and joined the many others that follow her health and fitness journey. She was not only the one that inspired me to start the Kayla Itsines Bikini Body Guide, but actually inspired me to start my own health and fitness Instagram and blog. It’s safe to say that Stef is not only an amazing person and loyal friend but is to me, and she is to many others, a true fitpiration.
A little over a year ago I was in the campus gym running on the treadmill. Naturally, (since there’s nothing much more boring than running on a treadmill in a gym) I found myself watching the fit-as-hell blondie on the other side of the room that was frantically jumping up and down doing god knows what. First thought: “damn I love her gym clothes”, second thought: “what is this workout she’s doing, it looks hella intense I wanna do it”, third thought: “who is this girl I can’t decide if I want to be her or be best friends with her”.
Flash-forward a year, and I’m in a train on my way to go for a hike with one of my closest friends, asking her questions about her current fitness routine, and that friend is no other than the fit-as-hell blondie I had admired only a few months before. It’s funny how things work out.
- What does “living the fit life” mean to you?
“For me, living the fit life means living an active lifestyle where you incorporate sports into your daily life. It doesn’t just have to be lifting weights at the gym but actually making it your lifestyle, for example going hiking with a friend, dancing etcetera.” The fact that we were in that moment on a train on our way to go for a hike serves to prove that Stef is not just words. One can easily see just by scrolling through her insta feed that she really carries the values of following a healthy fit life with her everywhere (note the recent pictures of her going for morning jogs in Ibiza when on grad trip; now that’s dedication). “The fit life to me is essentially making sports fun, not torture, and not only to achieve a goal but to actually enjoy what you’re doing.”
- How/why did you start your fit life journey?
“I was always very active and fit as I grew up with a healthy and active family. When I started with my ED, sports became torture, a sort of punishment. I lost the balance with my body and forgot the enjoyment I used to get from being active. Once I started getting better and taking care of my body I rediscovered the pleasure of eating well and doing sports. I also realized that what I eat is directly linked to how I feel. After being diagnosed with a gluten intolerance, I started paying even more attention to what I ate and reading up on the subject. When you start getting more educated on the subject, you start to really believe in it (more than if you simply watch your food in order to reach a goal weight).”
- Describe a week in workouts.
“I am currently doing BBG 2.0 and I’m at week 20!” She’s definitely come far from when I was watching her do burps where she was only at the beginning of BBG 1.0, and all this in less than a year! “3 days a week are resistance training where you focus on either arms, legs or abs. I also do 2 days a week of spinning (using the cycle coach App)” I have yet to try the App as well, but Stef has told me it basically coaches you through a spin class with synchronized music and everything, technology these days I swear they have an app for everything it’s amazing. “I also run outside once a week and do a weight session in the gym.” Yup, that seems like a lot, especially for a full time student graduating from the last year of her bachelors, not to mention also a full time blogger. “Yeah I workout everyday. I don’t plan my rest days but take an active rest day (where I just do some yoga) when I feel that my body needs it.”
- How strict are you regarding your diet?
“I tried going vegan last year but realized that at this point in my life, it’s too restrictive. I’m trying to not be too strict with myself (although I’m basically gluten and dairy free) because what is most important to me is my mental health. That being said, I eat mostly plant-based and as naturally as possible, but I won’t deny myself a treat or a piece of cake as a friend’s birthday.”
- How do you stay motivated?
“Ha that’s a funny question.” A hard one too, and probably also one that Stef had been asked before, but when you’re as focused and dedicated as she is, people will naturally wonder: damn how does she keep this thing going. “I actually enjoy what I do, and after a long day I look forward to getting a good workout in. I think a lot of it has to do with habit, those that say they’re not motivated just need to get started and realize the good it does to your mind, body, mood, energy, relationships etc. What is important is to not compare yourself to others as it can be frustrating and demotivating and just focus on yourself. And in those times where you really have no motivation, it’s good to have that person that holds you accountable and you can workout with.”
6. What is your greatest health/fitness achievement?
“Definitely running the 20km of Lausanne in October. It is something I had been meaning to do for a long time and I even did it under the time I was hoping to.” Considering the race was uphill and the weather was absolutely abysmal, I’d say it’s a pretty damn good achievement as well. “Apart from that, just showing up at the gym every day, not giving up and constantly pushing myself. When I started working out I wasn’t consistent, and would sometimes go hard for a month and then quit for a month and then have to restart all over again, doing this sort of yo-yo exercising. I am now finally in a good place where I’ve found a good routine where it’s really just become part of my life and it’s something I do daily without question. The fact that I was able to really make it part of my life is something I’m very proud of.”
7. What advice would you give to someone who is new to the world of health and fitness?
“I think to not compare your beginning to someone else’s middle, and in general just to not compare yourself. You never know, maybe they have been working out for years, maybe this is their job or maybe it’s even just their genetics and you would have to work harder to get the same results, it doesn’t matter, just don’t compare yourself. Look at your own progress, and focus on yourself.”
8. Any fitness goals or plans in place?
“After running the 20km, I thought I would immediately start training for a marathon afterwards but that didn’t really happen. The marathon is still on my lifetime bucket list though, and I’d really like to run it with my dad since he’s a runner. Other than that I’ve been working on my handstand a lot. I really want to perfect it even more and be able to hold the pose for a long time and even be able to walk, so that’s really what I’ve been working on pretty much everyday.”
CURRENT 5 FIT FAVS
FIT FOOD SNACK: Dates with organic PB
FAV FIT MOVE: Burpee
GO-TO GYM SONG: 8track BBG playlist
YOUR FITSPIRATION: Bags and Bunnies
FITLIFE ESSENTIAL: Batista dry-shampoo