Louise Parker is quite literally re-writing the rules on weight loss and the effects of a better lifestyle, not through quick fad diets or extreme exercise but through her four pillar method that transforms her clients in a positive way that works for life. To find out more about the method, how and why it really works we caught up with Louise…
Can you tell us a bit about your background and how you set about creating the Louise Parker Method?
I was at university training to be an actress when I fell into personal training. It was a combination of needing to pay my rent (and wanting to do something other than bar work) and becoming fascinated by the changes I had seen myself achieve having started to go to the gym (I’m not a natural gym bunny so this was a big thing for me). After graduation I continued to train clients and everything developed from there.
After about 5 years working as a trainer, most of which I’d spent yo-yo dieting myself losing and gaining the same 10 pounds, I worked out the secret sauce that allowed me to quit dieting once and for all. It was so liberating and I decided from that point on, I would only work with clients who were serious about making lasting changes to their lifestyle, mindset, exercise and nutrition. This was the foundation of the method and I’ve been improving it ever since.
My team now is 35+ strong and comprises registered dieticians, expert personal trainers and a lovely client support team who coach my method. My team are exceptional – I know everyone says this but I couldn’t be more proud of mine. They’re true experts in their field (it’s why I only recruit dietitians rather than nutritionists) and absolutely embody the LP values with every client.
What does a typical day for you involve (if there ever is such a thing)?
It’s such a cliché but there really isn’t such a thing as a typical day. I’ve spent much of the last 3 years writing and publicising my books. However now my responsibilities within LP are to help develop my fabulous team and oversee all the new projects we are working on – in addition to being the face of the brand.
It’s been quite a change for me as I spent the first 15 years of my working life almost totally focused on client facing work. I’m still massively drawn to helping clients – nothing beats the buzz seeing a client overcome their challenges and transform their lifestyle – the physical transformations are great but the deeper physiological shifts are amazing.
We’ve a huge amount of new projects in the pipeline all of which are focussed on spreading my method as far and wide as possible. It’s incredibly exiting but it means we’re constantly assessing priorities, making sure our focus is in the right areas. At the same time, the method always improves – my team constantly scan the latest research to ensure we’re incorporating all the latest research into client programmes so that our best lifestyle transformation is always the next one we do.
What would you say is the first step for someone looking to transform their body?
If you want a transformation that lasts (which is what we do), the first step is to find peace with the fact that the physical results you get are the consequence of your lifestyle transformation not the cause. If your goal is to look like a supermodel then you have to live the lifestyle the first.
The other light bulb moment is truly accepting that diets and fads don’t work. They just don’t – it’s as simple as that. If they did, we’d do them! The sales pitches can be so compelling and it makes me so angry as it’s preying on people when they’re often in a state of real emotional pain about their lifestyle or how they feel in their own skin. It’s why we approach all programmes with kindness as the starting point because we understand how hard taking the first step can be.
I’ve always said to anyone at the start of their transformation ask yourself two questions. Firstly, can I see myself doing 80% of this in 5 years time. Secondly, would I want my teenage daughter to follow this. If the answer to either is no, then I’d recommend a re-think.
Your programme is based upon a method called ‘the four pillars’, for those who don’t know, what does this involve?
Think of my four pillars like the legs of a stool. The stool is stable on four legs and with a bit of effort you can just about stay upright on three but less than that you’ll fall over. It’s the same with wellbeing transformations, having four pillars give you the first foundations you need. My pillars are eat beautifully, live well, think successfully and work out intelligently. My dieticians and personal trainers tailor each of the four pillars for clients following programmes to ensure the lifestyle they are adopting is sustainable and that it’s going to guide them to the results they’re looking for. My books and programmes follow the same method and principles and so you’ll always get a consistent message however you tap into the method.
How do your programmes work for people living further afield that can’t make it to your London clinic?
40% of our clients follow our programmes remotely and so it’s a big part of the work we do. My team of dieticians and trainers are based from our two clinics in London (plus we offer personal training in our private studios in Harrods and at-home for London-based clients). For any appointment you can opt to see us in person, by phone or video call. Even our London-based clients use video calls a lot as it makes the programmes work with your lifestyle even more seamlessly. The best bit is our research which shows it has no effect on the results clients achieve which is a great testimony to my team.
We’ve supported clients in over 47 countries now so we adapted the method for all sorts of lifestyles and cultures. The most unusual has definitely been helping a client on an oil rig!
You now have two bestselling books ‘Louise Parker Method: Lean For Life’, ‘Louise Parker Method: Lean For Life Cookbook’ and have recently released a new book called the ‘Louise Parker: The 6 Week Programme’. What inspired you to write these books?
Two reasons really. Firstly and the main thing that drives me everyday is the frustration with the false promises and gimmicks that exist in the wellbeing world. The false hope that diets and detoxes bring is cruel. I want to show people there is another, kinder way that really works.
I also wanted to give people another route to experience the method if they weren’t able to follow the programmes with my team. The first book gives an overview of the method and shares my story. The second is a cookbook and the third is a step-by-step six week programme. The most inspiring part has been the ‘Leanie’ tribe online. It’s a support community founded by readers of the books for others readers of the books. It runs totally independently from me and it’s more than a little awe-inspiring to see the positivity that the group offers everyday.
You also run 7 day luxury retreats, when is the next retreat coming up and what do they involve?
My next retreat is in September at an amazing hotel called The Capra in Saas-Fee, Switzerland. It’s one week long and gives a full immersion in my method. This year I’m joining my dieticians and trainers on the retreat and I can’t wait! Beautiful surroundings, great food, a programme designed to make you feel amazing whilst making new friends. What’s not to love?!
Is there anything exciting coming up in 2019? Are you planning on writing more books in the near future?
We have so much going on at the moment it’s hard to know where to start. Watch this space for a speaker event series, a third clinic, a new online programme for clients and amazing brand partnerships. Sadly this doesn’t leave room for any new books, however, never say never…!
The new stuff is exciting but the biggest achievement will still be the next client transformation we do. It’s honestly the best feeling when you help someone achieve a truly lasting lifestyle change. It’s life changing for clients and for me and my team too.
To find out more about the Louise Parker Method and how you can make positive changes for life visit the website www.louiseparker.com or call 0203 862 5401.
Images, Louise Parker, David Clerihew, RodelRio Photography, Mark Weeks