Raise your hand if you love Pretty Little Liars! Ashely Benson plays Hanna so well in the series!
I don’t have to tell you: Ashley looks incredible – healthy and glowing. Over the years, Ashley’s been open about the challenges of working in Hollywood, including the pressure to be very thin.
Although Ashley is slim (she is a US size 2!), she has still been told that she’s too fat to play various roles. As a result, Ashley has struggled with accepting her body the way it is.
But, over the years, Ashley has come to terms with her body type, and she’s been outspoken about the use of photoshop. She’s a petite woman with natural curves. And, to her, this is great! She embraces her body, and does what she can to stay healthy and fit.
Here’s what she does:
Ashley loves Gwyneth Paltrow’s approach to healthy eating, and she owns and cooks from Gwyneth’s cookbooks.
Gwyneth emphasises eating a healthy, well-rounded diet with lots of vegetables. She also encourages people to avoid processed food and too much alcohol.
Ashley is not a master chef. She admits that she isn’t all that handy in the kitchen and I’m sure many of us can relate. :)
So, she keeps her meals pretty simple and straightforward. Here’s what she eats most days.
For breakfast, Ashley prepares a hard-boiled egg. Eggs are a good source of both fat and protein, so they can be pretty filling. They also aren’t very high in calories.
She likes to have coffee for breakfast too. Her go-to drink is iced coffee with half-and-half and she says she can’t function without it!
Ashley likes to make a salad for lunch but she also enjoys making soups and stews. While she tries to eat healthy most of the time, she also enjoys eating foods like cheeseburgers, tacos, pizza and pasta from time to time.
Ashley typically cooks fish for dinner because it can be a wonderful addition to a healthy diet. Fish are full of protein, healthy fats, vitamins and minerals.
Ashley admits to having a major sweet tooth. She loves donuts, especially chocolate cake donuts with chocolate frosting, and most of her days on set would start with this sweet.
Ashley does different types of workouts depending on her needs at the time. She spends a decent amount of time in the gym, and she likes to work out several times a week.
For instance, she normally does some kind of cardio 2-3 times a week and some kind of resistance training 3 times a week. Although working out can be tiring, Ashley says she feels better about herself when she sticks with it.
Ashley really enjoys SoulCycle classes even though SoulCycle can be intense. It burns a lot of calories and is an excellent source of cardio.
Some girls might notice their legs gaining more muscle than they want with a lot of cycling, so keep that in mind if you decide to try it. :)
Ashley also walks her dogs every morning. Because walking quickly can be a great form of exercise too, I recommend it to all women who want to slim down!
Ashley does a lot of circuit training. This training method can help to get in a good cardio workout while also toning your muscles.
This is one of Ashley’s go-to routines, and she says she feels sore for days afterwards:
Ashley will sometimes attend The Bar Method classes. These classes combine barre exercises with other weight-free resistance workouts, like push-ups and core exercises. Barre can be an excellent way to tone your body. :)
Like a lot of celebrities, including many Victoria’s Secret models, Ashley loves kickboxing. She tries to do it once or twice a week if she can.
One of her favourite forms of stress release is completing a tough workout at Rumble Boxing in NYC. During the first half of a 45-minute session, you do an intense cardio boxing workout, which is followed by a boxing-inspired resistance training workout.
Ashley has been open about her struggles with mental health in the past, and she said that going to these boxing classes is a great way to help her address and cope with her anxiety.
Kickboxing is a good way to do a cardio workout while also toning your arms and core! I love to incorporate kickboxing into my routine too. :)
Ashley likes to go to Pilates classes about 3 days a week, and she normally goes for an hour every time.
Pilates can be an excellent bodyweight form of resistance training. Ashley does a lot of cardio, and it is important for her to also train her muscles so that she looks toned and feels strong. Her amazing abs probably come from doing Pilates so regularly!
Ashley says that if she could have anyone’s body, she would want to have Jenna Dewan’s. Jenna’s a dancer, who is very lean and toned. Pilates can help achieve a dancer-like body so it makes sense that Ashley prioritises it so much in her routine!
Most of Ashley’s workouts consist of bodyweight exercises, and strength training is no exception. In particular, she seems to stick to bodyweight pushups, core exercises, and lower-body moves.
Her favourite strength training exercise is a bodyweight squat. She says that she doesn’t do squats for her butt. Instead, they’re better for her legs.
Some women should be careful about doing too many squats. Squatting can easily make your legs bigger, and some women don’t want that. However, if done properly, squats still have benefits. They can:
In addition to eating well and exercising, Ashley says that she prioritises getting enough sleep, playing with her dogs, and doing similar things to take care of herself. These help her feel better mentally and physically!
Thanks for learning more about Ashley with me! Let me know if you have anything or anybody you want me to write about next. :)
Love Rachael Xx