wellness by Sam Potenciano

Get Well: Kaila Estrada

The model, student, and SM Youth ambassador on balancing clean eating with Yum Burgers.

How often do you work out in a week?
Ideally I like to work out 3 to 4 times in a week, but when I’m really busy with work or school I try to get to the gym at least twice.

Can you tell us about what kind of workouts you usually do?
I do Crossfit over at Hit Arena in BF Parañaque with my trainer Dandy Chua (@hit_man_dan). Time-wise they’re these shorter sessions (sometimes less than an hour) but they make up for it in terms of intensity. We’ll usually do 40 minutes to an hour of really intense cardio—10 rounds of 3 exercises with 15 to 20 reps each, and only 2 minutes of rest in between. It’s super fast-paced so even though it isn’t that much time, you feel like you get 3 hours of training in.

Twice a month I’ll also lift weights to tone up a bit, as well as alternate Crossfit training with boxing.kaila 2Is your approach to nutrition just as intense?
Our coach helps us come up with a nutritional plan based on whatever our individual goals are. Mine is to lose a bit of weight, so he put me on a plan that’s mostly fruits, vegetables, meat, and not too many carbs. I wouldn’t say that I’m super strict about it though. Just the thought of depriving myself of the things that I like to eat stresses me out. Gigi Hadid said this thing that I always remember, something like, ‘You eat clean to stay fit, but you eat a burger to stay sane.’ I totally agree with and live by that philosophy!

For 5 days out of the week, I’ll try to stick to my diet, but on the weekends I’ll let myself enjoy and indulge. So 60% of the time I eat clean, but the rest of it I don’t deprive myself if I’m craving sweets or fast food.

What’s your go-to when you’re having a fast food craving?
Oh, Jollibee for sure. I get the Yum Burger, the Jolly Hotdog, the fries…4Does sticking to a healthy meal plan feel harder when you have to juggle work with school?
It’s definitely harder if I have an early call time for a shoot or if I have classes. I don’t really have that much time to prep my meals, so it’s mostly about making healthier choices throughout the day. I’m lucky because this year The Healthy Corner opened up near my school, and they offer really great choices like black rice and lean protein. At shoots they usually provide food, but that’s usually pizza or fast food, so I’ve learned to bring my own food in those situations.

Can you tell us more about your fitness goals for the year?
I want to be more toned and lean and strong. I love Gigi Hadid and the way she shaped her body for her first VS show. I like the fact that she looks really healthy. She’s not stick thin; she has curves but she’s still lean and physically strong at the same time.

What motivates you to work out?
I honestly feel that, when you see yourself looking great, you just feel better. For me it builds my confidence. Personally, I’m much more confident when I work out and eat clean because when I see how it affects me physically, it makes me feel better. I also work out because it de-stresses me. It’s sort of like a form of therapy after having a really long day. For me, working out is a release.

Photos by Ralph Mendoza
Produced by Sam Potenciano

Sam Potenciano
Sam Potenciano
Sam is the digital editor of L’Officiel Manila. Formerly the founding editor of The Neighborhood and the editor-in-chief of Candy magazine, she is also a columnist for The Philippine Star's Young Star section. Follow her on Instagram at @sampotenciano.
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