Setting and Maintaining Your Health and Fitness Goals with Sonia Jhas

Photo by Marcus Munoz

Sonia Jhas is one of Canada’s leading health and fitness experts. Holding a Bachelor of Commerce and MBA degree from Queen’s University, Sonia Jhas is a certified personal trainer, nutrition specialist and media expert having been featured in some of Canada’s leading media outlets. Sonia Jhas is also the recipient of the 2015 Ontario Notable Award in Sports and Fitness. With a huge following of over 250,000 social media fans, Sonia Jhas has become one of Canada’s leading voices in health and fitness.

Beyond Fashion Magazine had the opportunity to sit down with Sonia Jhas to get the low down on what everyone needs to do to stay motivated and active this upcoming season.

(Marcus): Why is health and wellness so important to you?

(Sonia Jhas): I think in my case specifically, it has been an evolution into health and fitness being a priority – growing up it was always about being skinny and aesthetic. I was kind of trapped in that vicious cycle for most of my life, really not focusing on health and wellness at all – battling anorexia – basically beating my body into submission. But over the years I tried that route again and again and realized that it wasn’t working – I feel terrible from the inside out. The “fulfillment” that I thought I was getting from my typical routine was completely unsustainable. It’s only been in the past 8 years or so that health and wellness for me has become my focus. Put your wellbeing first, eating well, moving well and understanding what your body NEEDS is so important – your confidence improves, your relationships improve, it’s pretty spectacular.

What are your thoughts on dieting?

I think dieting is really loaded word. I’ve tried every fad diet you could imagine. I think I’m a little more practical when it comes to this idea of dieting – that there can be specific scenarios where you want to achieve specific goals in which might be a little less sustainable in the long run, but something short term and attainable like getting ready for a wedding and you don’t want to feel bloated or something. I’m not a huge proponent of dieting, if you have the intentions of making long term change in your life, dieting isn’t the solution but rather adopting a lifestyle that is sustainable and will make some concrete change in your life as a whole. I think its convenient for people to want to go on diet because there’s like a prescribed program that’s easy to understand and follow but it can be quite severe in affecting your body negatively. I think diets are the way of the past – now that we have all this knowledge available, it’s now not the end all to be all.

What is one of the most frequently asked questions by clients, and fans?

 HOW DO I GET ABS?… I think regardless of how far we’ve come in understanding health and wellness we can’t help in obsessing over the visual aspect.

What are some of your recommended guidelines to follow for setting and maintaining fitness goals?

BE REALISTIC:

You have to be realistic with your time frame perspective and you have to stay the course long enough to actually get the engine going and see concrete results. I always tell my clients that within 3 months of working together that there will be some sort of change – sometimes it’ll be more noticeable, but that all depends on how diligent you are with staying the course. By 6 months I’d say, you start to see actual change in your body shape. Again, it’s important that you be realistic with how much time it takes to actually see change in your body. Don’t be that person that 2 months in say “f-this” and gives up – you have the power to make actual change in your body.

MAKE A SET OF GOALS:

I hear a lot of people say “I just want to be fit”, but they have no tangible way of addressing what “fit” really means in the context of their life. You need actual metrics to benchmark against, otherwise we’re relying on our emotions – we’re all batshit crazy, so it’s not really the best way to measure our goals – I know there have been times when I’m bloated and just forget the world and have a whole pizza cause the damage has already been done. Get out of your own head!

FIND AN ACCOUNTABILITY PARTNER:

I don’t think we’re meant to do this alone. I think it’s really challenging to be the motivator, doer, and the cheerleader – plus it’s really dark at 7 in the morning and then dark at 5pm, so I get it, the self-motivation can be a mountain to climb. That’s why it’s so important to have someone who’s with you through the highs and the lows to keep you on track to getting where you want to be. Those would be the main things! As for other things, throw the junk food out of your fridge (laughs).

Photo by Marcus Munoz

What does is it mean to be Sonia Certified?

It’s our way of suggesting that there is a lot of noise out there, especially in the health and wellness industry. People don’t know where to go to get the truth on things. I really focus on balancing who I am as a health and wellness expert and literally being an everyday person finding my way through the mess of products, trends and fads that come my (our) way. So basically, what it is, is my stamp of approval saying this or that works or doesn’t – in most cases. Essentially debunking the myths and misconceptions about health and wellness practices.

What’s a special tip you have for someone trying to overcome demotivation during the winter?

Just know you are not alone, that the struggle is SO real. Every year I’m re-surprised at how hard the entry to winter is, and how hard it is to get my ass off the couch (laughs). I think it’s important when you’re going through this to just be proactive! If you think about how much winter bothers you, it will be much more difficult to overcome. Which is why things like meal prep are so important because it’s able to put you ahead of your own complacency if ever comes up. Getting ahead also includes knowing when you’re going to work out and with who, and even getting down to what you’ll be wearing – showing up in autopilot will get you through the harsh winter.


Now get off that couch and get ready to live your best life!

If you’d like to know more about Sonia Jhas follow her on Instagram @soniajhas

Or check out her website SoniaJhas.com

Follow us on Instagram @beyondfashionmagazine and let us know what your fitness goals are!