Never one to shy away from a good work out, Jessica has been working extra hard to make sure that she looks slender and toned ready for her big day.
“I’m comfortable with my body and who I am because I work out a lot,” says Jessica.
“There is so much pressure to look a certain way in this town. But it's nice to have a little meat on you, and I hope I inspire women to appreciate their muscular calves!”
Thanks to high-octane fitness regime CrossFit, paired with a healthy-eating Palaeo diet, Jessica is not just fighting fit for actionmovie roles, but has a figure that men the world over swoon over.
From its grassroots in a Californian garage, CrossFit has become one of the fastest-growing workout disciplines, pairing strength training with pre-determined high-intensity workouts — ranging from snatching weights and 500m sprints to rowing, skipping and sit-ups.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
The Workout of the Day, or WOD (often given the name of a girl or war hero), is published on the www.crossfit.com website and changes daily, keeping Jessica and her fellow CrossFitters on their toes.
So while you are working out in Dublin, you are doing the same exercises as other CrossFitters across the globe.
CrossFit coach Matt Chilton, of Schnerka Personal Training, says: “The workouts focus on the 10 fitness domains: cardiovascular/respiratory endurance, stamina, strength, flexibility, power, speed, agility, balance, coordination and accuracy.”
CrossFit sessions are short and intense, which makes them perfect for people who are on the go, short of time and want that quick and intense burst of a workout. The workouts are fast and furious in their nature, so are not just intense but they deliver quick results, too.
“Each day you work different parts of your body and build on different areas and keep a record of how well you do. This way when you look back at your diary, you can see how much you have achieved in such a short space of time,” says Matt.
WHERE DO I TRAIN?
With the help of the WOD, you can take on your own fat-busting workout in the comfort of your own home or garage.
Jessica has been frequently spotted at the LA CrossFit gym, Petranek Fitness. There are Cross- Fit branches in Sandyford, Dublin, Blackrock, Dublin and Dublin city centre.
The CrossFit method focuses on vigorous, intense workouts that take no more than 20 minutes. Here’s just one.
In as little time as possible, complete five rounds of:
Run 400 metres.
Box jumps — stand next to a box (anything up to 24in high) and bend your knees, keeping your chest high. Bend your knees into a squat position then, using your arms to help propel you, jump up on to the box, stand up to finish and then step down. Do this 30 times.
Wall ball shots — using anything up to a 20lb ball, stand a few feet away from a wall. Bend your knees down into a squat and, at the same time, quickly straighten your legs to a standing position again, extend your arms up and throw the ball against the wall. Catch it and go back into the squat position again. Repeat this 30 times.
A LITTLE YOGA
Jessica doesn't just stick to intense workouts — she loves to do yoga twice a week to lengthen her muscles. “I like to do a couple of yoga classes during the week,” she says. “ Yoga for me is more of an elongating thing. It is a constant for me because it keeps my muscles long and flexible,” she says.
WHAT SHOULD I EAT?
To follow Jessica’s healthy-eating strategy, you are best sticking to a Palaeo diet, also known as Palaeolithic diet or caveman diet. It is all about natural foods to help achieve great health and a perfect physique.
And since this is paired with a high-intensity workout, you need to keep your strength up. To stay on track with her regimen while at home in Los Angeles, Jessica loves to cook.
“I do a lot of cooking at home using fresh fish or lean meat like chicken and vegetables. I eat well. I don't like the word ‘diet',” says Jessica, who cuts back on fatty or processed foods and bans alcohol when she needs to get in shape.
“The healthy-eating plan is incredibly helpful; it just leans you down and slims you up and takes that little layer of fat, skin, water-weight right off your body.” Base your diet on garden vegetables, especially greens, lean meats, nuts, seeds and some starch. Avoid sugar.
Jessica's diet is full of healthy fresh foods to fill up and energise at the beginning of the day; fruits for snacking, and lean meat and veggies for dinner.
“For me, getting enough sleep, drinking lots of water, having a healthy diet, and staying away from alcohol are musts. Absolutely crucial,” she says. “It’s so boring, I know, but doing those things really helps.”
But that doesn't mean her diet doesn't have any wiggle room. She's a fan of the scheduled cheat day, where she can indulge and eat whatever she wants without feeling guilty.
“It’s hard to keep up that intensely when it comes to healthy eating, so I do have some bad stuff every once in a while. You have to give yourself a break,” she explains.
“You have to cheat once in a while. The trick is to know when to stop. “When I'm working and I eat healthily all week, then I give myself one day — usually Sunday — when I eat just what I want.
“Not too much, but enough to satisfy my cravings. You have to, otherwise your mind goes a little nutso,” Jessica adds