Interviews / August 16, 2012

Gina Lombardi

By Charles Platkin, PhD
Gina Lombardi has twenty years of fitness experience and 60,000 hours of one-on-one personal coaching. Gina has trained famous actors, musicians and television executives including Andy Garcia, Catherine Bell, Kevin James, Isaac Hayes, Leah Remini, and Val Kilmer.

Name: Gina Lombardi
Birthday: November 2nd
Location: Sherman Oaks, CA
Website: www.coachlombardi.com

Diet Detective: Hey Gina, thanks again for agreeing to answer several questions for our readers. I’m wondering, what inspired your fitness passion?

Gina: The pleasure is all mine! Well, I’d have to say that it all started back when I was a kid. Growing up with five brothers and a sister made for an interesting childhood. We were always very active. Our front lawn was the one where ALL the neighborhood kids would come to and play. So fitness and activities were always present in my life. I mean, we actually used to “walk” to our friends’ houses, even if they were two miles away! Who does that anymore? So as I got older and saw the need rising for adults and children to get exercises because our lifestyle as a country changed, I decided to become a coach and a trainer.

Diet Detective: The title of your latest book – Deadline Fitness – what gave you that idea? Should you take it slow when trying to get fit?

Gina: Deadline Fitness was inspired by my clients. They have always encouraged me to do a book because of the amazing results they were getting on my programs. I was hesitant at first because I am a non-believer of cookie-cutter programs. One size does NOT fit all. So, the only way I was going to do this book was if I could figure out a way to “customize” it to each individual. And I did. I am in a book club here in LA and all the ladies chose my book for this month. When we met last Monday, the ones who had already started their programs had already lost weight (between 2-5 pounds) in a week. They were so excited. And to answer your question about taking it slow. I agree that programs should be done safely and wisely. The programs in Deadline Fitness give you the safest, MOST EFFECTIVE ways (leaving no secrets out!) that I get my clients to their goal. The key here is having a realistic goal to start with.

Diet Detective: Best advice for those wanting to get in shape FAST?

Gina: While I’m a big fan of self-motivation, and the fact that there are a lot of folks out there who want to get it done FAST, but you gotta be realistic. In a nutshell, my best advice is to be realistic about what you want to achieve in that time frame (there are realistic statistics in the beginning of each deadline chapter); commit to that chapter full-heartedly; commit to the maintenance plan.

Diet Detective: Tell us a secret about fitness — something that trainers might not tell clients but they should?

Gina: You have to train hard. Some trainers are afraid to push their clients or be tough on their clients for fear that the client will quit or get mad. If you have the knowledge, you gotta enforce on them. Invade their space so that they will make the necessary changes for their own good!

Diet Detective: Out of all the celebrities you’ve trained — who is the hardest working? And why? What can we learn from her/ him?

Gina: Honestly, all of them have worked hard because their career depends on it. Believe me, that’s a great motivating factor. I think there was only one who was really lazy and I had to drag her out of bed every time I went there. I often asked her why she was even bothering to have me come over. Eventually I fired her.

Diet Detective: Where you like to do your workouts?

Gina: Personally I like wide open spaces like huge parks and beaches where I bring my own equipment and also use the environment. But I am also a big fan of stinky sweaty kickboxing gyms where people are training hard and are really focused.

Diet Detective: You’re favorite core exercise?

Gina: Plank. It never gets easier.

Diet Detective: Best flexibility exercise?

Gina: Always love the ballet-style straddle stretch. I can always gauge my leg flexibility with that one.

Diet Detective: Best strength training exercise?

Gina: The Squat. The king of all exercises!

Diet Detective: Worst strength training exercise?

Gina: Not a big fan of the neck strengthening machines. Most people do it wrong.

Diet Detective: Your morning routine?

Gina: First, I thank God for letting me wake up, I pray for my family and friends and then hit the ground running. Having a four-year old keeps my schedule very busy. Once I get him off to school I start my personal day of working out, training clients, and doing the various fitness “jobs” that I do — writing and meeting deadlines, book promotion, radio interviews, tv segments, etc.

Diet Detective: What’s always in your fridge?

Gina: Berries, nonfat milk, lots of flavored waters, and Omega 3 fish oil capsules.

Diet Detective: What’s never in your fridge?

Gina: Cheesecake

Diet Detective: Okay now a few very quick one word or one sentence answer — pick only one of the choices please. 

Yoga vs. Pilates vs. Stretching? Pilates
Free weights vs. Machine? Free weights
Cardio vs. Strength Training vs. Flexibility/Core Work? Strength Training
Swiss ball / Physio Ball vs. Exercise Bands? Bands
Treadmill vs. Walking Outdoors? Walking outdoors

Diet Detective: Your favorite healthy breakfast?

Gina: Hard boiled egg whites, fresh blueberries with Barlean’s Omega 3 Swirl drizzled over it (banana/strawberry flavor), ½ cup oatmeal plain. YUM!

Diet Detective: Which historical figure can you relate to most?

Gina: Eleanor Roosevelt. She was someone who had to get her shortcomings out the way in order to do great things. She was very shy early on as an adult and had to overcome that so that she could speak on her husband’s behalf. She went on to inspire so many people (especially women).

Diet Detective: Who’s your hero?

Gina: My mother. Hands down, she was the greatest woman who ever lived. She grew up in a large family and had loads of responsibility because her father died very young. She had a lot of heartache, but was so strong and pulled through to have a fantastic life. Raising seven children in the suburbs of Philadelphia had to be hard! I feel so lucky to have had her as my mom. And I miss her terribly.

Diet Detective: Your worst summer job?

Gina: Telemarketing

Diet Detective: What’s your motto?

Gina: You gotta earn it — whether it’s the body you want or the respect you want!

Diet Detective: As a child you wanted to be:

Gina: Someone who did something important for the world and made it a better place their own little way. That’s all I ever wanted.






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