CELEBRITY WELLBEING I’m so happy perceptions of beauty are gradually changing A
Four reasons to...
UTHOR, campaigner, presenter and charity founder, Katie Piper can now count Strictly contender among her list of achievements. Katie, 35, who has two daughters – Belle, four, and baby Penelope, 11 months – with her husband Richard James Sutton, was partnered with Gorka Marquez on the hit BBC show. She reached week four before being voted off recently and, despite being hit by nerves, describes the experience as a “fantastic journey”.
Taking part in the show was quite a change from her jam-packed routine: She set up the Katie Piper Foundation, to support those affected by scars and burns, in 2009 – a year-and-a-half after suffering life-changing burns in an acid attack in March 2008 which required around 250 operations as a result. During her Strictly stint, Katie had to deal with the “difficult” news that her attacker had reportedly been freed from prison.
Here, the mum-of-two talks about coping with nerves on the dance show, how she deals with tough times and keeps well, and why she has no regrets... “I DON’T think I’ll ever have that much fun anywhere else. It was wonderful, positive, and scary and crazy and, as I never imagined I’d be able to dance in front of strangers, a really big thing for me. I’m so proud I managed it.
“My biggest battle was nerves. Despite the fact I’m so confident normally – I’ve done a one-woman tour and TV work – there’s something about stepping onto that ballroom floor! Forgetting my steps on week one was awful, but at least other celebrities like Ruth Langsford have experienced that.
“I’d read back notes I kept of positive things which happened and what I was learning, which boosted me.
“Confidence is about perspective and not slipping into comparison. Gorka’s lovely, he was very patient and I’m now hooked on dancing. My husband and I plan to join a salsa club.” From dealing with nerves on Strictly, to looking good and staying healthy, Katie Piper tells how she keeps her life in balance “MEDITATION really gives me moments of calmness, in what’s a very busy stressful life. I started when I suffered some post-natal anxiety and depression after I had Penelope, and had gone back to work within two months of her birth.
“I began using meditation apps, whether it was anxiety, anger or needing to sleep, but now I do it on my own and aim for 15-minute sessions twice a day.
“I’m conscious that mental health needs to be looked after as much as physical health. I use my new book, Confidence: The Journal.
“Confidence is found from within, and writing down personal thoughts, acknowledging positive things and seeing progress towards goals is really helpful, empowering and calming.” “I DID a half marathon recently. Road running is great, I put on a podcast and savour an hour on my own, away from the family, which helps me recharge and relax. I also do weight-lifting and boxing. “I’ve gradually lost around two stone, which I put on in pregnancy, by exercising and improving my diet. I have a sustaining breakfast, something like oats and fruit or maybe eggs, which sets me up for the morning. “I try to eat mindfully, by focusing on a meal and not going on social media or watching TV at the same time. “As a mum of two under-fives, I have to fit workouts around them. Sometimes I’ll go in gym gear to the park with the kids and while they play, I’ll do a cardio workout. “I’m all for treats at the weekends, like a glass of wine and some dark chocolate. I don’t have to over-protect my skin but I do use a detergent, Neutral 0%, especially designed for people with sensitive skin.” “NO, I don’t, because I think if there’s anything in your life that you look back on and wish you’d done differently, you still have the opportunity to do so. I love the saying that there’s no such thing as failure – it’s just practise for getting it right and enjoying success. “My mum’s advice to me has always been: ‘Get on with it, dear!’ And that always rings in my head at tricky times.” Neutral 0% is a premium range of laundry detergents designed for people with allergies and sensitive skin, with 0% perfumes, 0% colourants and 0% optical brighteners. Visit neutralsensitiveskin.com