Searching for some impetus to kickstart your new year health routine? Then look no further than ex Strictly stars James & Ola Jordan, who have waltzed off with this year’s celebrity transformation trophy!
The former dance champions are top of the weight loss leader board after dropping an incredible five and a half stone between them in just four months. They’ve quick stepped their way back to their glitter ball best and have now launched a workout website – Dance Shred – to share their diet and fitness secrets.
James and Ola endeared themselves to their legions of fans last summer by revealing that they had – in their words – “let themselves go” since leaving the hit BBC show, joking “couples that eat together, stay together”.
The Instagram snap of them sporting noticeably fuller figures since their pro dancing days went viral, with them both talking openly about their “mum and dad bods”. Since then, they have both lost an astonishing 3 stone each, by devising their own health and fitness plan that involved mixing up their dance skills with some serious fitness moves, alongside a calorie controlled diet.
After giving up professional dancing and welcoming their little girl Ella into the world back in 2020, they admitted that they’d both become couch potatoes, loving nothing more than a night in with a Big Mac and a family size bag of chocolates – or two.
“It’s not rocket science is it?” said James
If you stop exercising and eat lots of junk, you’re going to get fat – and we did
So they started gradually getting back into fitness – after eight years of letting it slide. “People always say – oh it’s easy for you,” says James. “But trust me, we’re just like everyone else and it was NOT easy at first. Plus we knew just doing dance steps wasn’t going to do it which is why we mixed it up with some tougher fitness moves like squats and burpees.”
James and Ola have now decided to use their experiences to help others. On the Dance Shred website they present 12 weekly workouts based on classic Strictly steps like salsa, jive and cha cha blended with power fitness moves like squats, lunges and planks. The routines are just 15 minutes long but as Ola says, “They’ll have you feeling super fit in no time – AND you’ll get to learn a few fun dance steps along the way.”
They also took advice from fellow TV professional Jo Travers, who’s a State Registered Dietician as well as a regular on BBC health shows.
She helped us devise a plan that was mega simple to follow. It was all about counting calories – and it still allows us to have treats like a glass of wine or some chocolate – just not a whole bottle or a whole box!