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HomeHome And AwayEXCLUSIVE: Home and Away star Sophie Dillman reveals how she stays healthy,...

EXCLUSIVE: Home and Away star Sophie Dillman reveals how she stays healthy, fit and strong

Sophie Dillman, who plays the charming and down-to-earth surfer Ziggy Astoni on Home and Away, had to strip down to her bikini on location at Sydney’s Palm Beach all year to film sequences for the Australian soap.

When it comes to feeling and looking her best, though, the actress, who has been vocal about suffering with the debilitating health ailment endometriosis, confesses she’d rather focus on fitness than monitoring every calorie.

During a phone interview from the set of Summer Bay, the lively 28-year-old star tells WHO, “I don’t believe in diets.”

“Life is too brief not to take pleasure in it.” With a grin, she continues, “If you want a cookie, simply eat a cookie.”

How did you remain in shape during the state of emergency in NSW?

My daily schedule has been somewhat different in recent months, but I’ve rather loved it. When the gyms closed, I started using Kate Ivey’s DediKate app to perform workouts with her. There are several excellent high-intensity 20-minute workouts that may easily be included into a busy person’s schedule. I’ve become a brand ambassador because I adore them. I’ve also begun doing online boxing lessons, going for walks with my dog, and swimming in the water.

You appear to be extremely busy!

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I exercise to keep my mental health in check. I enjoy the sensation of endorphins coursing through my veins. I feel accomplished, calm, and more focused after a good exercise, so I aim to perform my workouts first thing in the morning so that I can carry that energy and motivation throughout the day. If my schedule doesn’t allow me to exercise first thing in the morning, I’ll sit down and plan meetings with myself where I know there will be time to exercise.

It appears that you love working out in a number of ways

After a period of performing anything, I notice that my body is no longer challenged. For me, the trick is to change things up every few months. I enjoy seeing a personal trainer, participating in boxing sessions, and doing certain exercises at home. The secret is that I have to put in a lot of effort, lift heavy weights, and work up a nice sweat. I’m not the type of person who can simply go to a Pilates or yoga class.

What impact does endometriosis have on your health goals?

Although the high-intensity exercise that I like is excellent for pain reduction, there are days when the agony is simply too intense to begin. I’ve got to train myself to pay attention to my body. If I tried to push it, I’d be in excruciating pain for the rest of the day and unable to function. I believe that balance is the key to a happy existence, and that it is acceptable to not work out every day. Days when you don’t push yourself are equally as essential as days when you do.

What additional daily self-care practises do you have?

I don’t drink enough water while I’m busy, which causes headaches and poor sleep. As a result, I’ve set objectives for how much water I’ll need by lunch and at the end of the day. I also place a high value on sleep since I am a shell of a human when I don’t get enough. I’ll attempt to do some meal prep if I know I’ll have a busy week ahead of me. When I’m worried and busy, I tend to eat whatever is in front of me. If it includes a lot of sweet meals or fast food, it may be highly harmful to my aims. Because my profession requires me to be physically and mentally alert at all times, it’s critical that I fuel properly.

When it comes to what you eat, how rigid are you?

Since of my endo, I can’t consume a lot of gluten or dairy because it causes me discomfort. But I’m not at all limiting. I enjoy eating a wide variety of foods and other items that make me feel happy. I get irritable when I don’t eat enough, and [my boyfriend] Patrick [O’Connor] knows to keep his distance! So I try to keep some nutritious foods on hand to help me break out of a funk.

What are the essential foods you’ll need to get through the day?

I enjoy a cup of coffee in the morning and chocolate in the afternoon. I’m in desperate need of a pick-me-up!

Do you feel under a lot of pressure to look your best for Home and Away all year?

I’m looking at it from Ziggy’s point of view. She is unconcerned about what she eats or if she drinks alcohol. She is still self-assured and enjoys surfing because she enjoys being in the water. Ziggy is my role model, and I believe we should all do better to emulate her.

Is it essential to you to be a positive role model for other women on their health and fitness journeys on social media?

When I’m on social media, all I want to do is be as genuine as possible. I enjoy feeling powerful and striving to be my best. Those are the kinds of ladies I like following on social media. However, I believe that comparison is harmful, and that people should run their own race when it comes to their health and fitness goals. Trying to compare yourself to someone you see on social media may be quite harmful. Because what works for others may not work for you, everyone should strive to do what makes them happy and good.

However, I believe that the world is changing, and that women are tired of the beauty business portraying such a narrow slice of life. I’m determined that my future children will not be subjected to the same pressures to conform to whatever body type is now fashionable. We need to give ourselves a break since growing up is difficult enough.

Channel Seven’s Home and Away airs Monday through Thursday at 7 p.m.

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