Don’t look now, but it’s that time of year again. Spring.
Much like birds flying south for the winter for warmer temperatures and humans not being far behind, that ingrained and instinctive need to get back in shape once spring rolls around is upon us again.
Whether it is due to seeing a non-stop array of bikini-clad Instagram models or searching on the hashtag of #motivation, the desire to work out and toned for the summer creeps up on all of us.
It could be something as benign as wanted to lose a couple of pounds, or wanting to tone up one’s thighs and derriere, spring offers one a proverbial second chance on life when it comes to getting fit and looking good.
One other sign of spring is seeing fitness models such as Boston-bred Lauren Melissa Hodgkins giving and providing fitness motivation to those who want it.
Born and bred in Beantown, the 23-year-old 5’5 blue-eyed beauty, who has modeled for the likes of big name brands such as Herbalife and athleisure brands such as Paragon Fitwear, is ready to make a big splash this coming summer all her own.
As with all native New Englanders, Lauren loves her Boston-area teams with the passionate of a true die-hard. Below is my Q and A with her as we discuss getting fit for spring, her Boston sports teams and how to get and stay motivated this spring.
Name: Lauren Melissa Hodgkins
Birthplace: Framingham, MA
Robert D. Cobb: What kind of model do you consider yourself? (Instagram, pin-up/glamour, fashion)
Lauren Melissa Hodgkins: “Fitness model”
Robert D. Cobb: What brands have you modeled for? Which one do you enjoy modeling for the most?
Lauren Melissa Hodgkins: “Paragon Fitwear, Gripactive, Scripted Jade, Herbalife”
Robert D. Cobb: Where has been your favorite place to shoot?
Lauren Melissa Hodgkins: “The beach, no question! However, I have yet to model in a gym – I hope to do this in the near future.”
Robert D. Cobb: What is the most exciting aspect of modeling?
Lauren Melissa Hodgkins: “I think of modeling as a form of self-expression. It’s exciting for me to channel my passion for health and fitness into the art of modeling. It’s a fantastic way to capture a moment in time that holds timeless inspiration.”
Robert D. Cobb: What fashion and style tips and trends do you have for looking good when the temperature drops?
Lauren Melissa Hodgkins: “I can’t tell you how excited I am for spring and summer. However, winter is perfect for layering – especially if you’re covering up that winter weight (let’s be real, we all bulk a little extra in the winter).
I love chunky blanket scarves for their versatility, and I practically live in my black ankle boots – they are such a staple, whether you’re dressing them down with some skinny jeans, or dressing up with a velvet circle skirt and some over-the-knee socks, they are absolutely perfect all winter.”
Robert D. Cobb: Any spring fashion and style tips for women that you wish to pass on?
Lauren Melissa Hodgkins: “Every woman should own a pair of high-waisted jean shorts and a crop top. It’s my staple summer look and I think every woman looks beautiful and fresh in this attire.”
Robert D. Cobb: Fashion or fitness fad, what is your opinion of athleisure?
Lauren Melissa Hodgkins: “I think it’s a fad, just like any other trend.
Those who work out on a daily basis might continue to reap the benefits of getting away with wearing their gym attire all day, but for those who do it just for the trend, I think it will fizzle out, just like most trends.. but who knows, it could circle back like the 90s choker trend we’re seeing again (thank god I kept all my chokers from elementary school)”
Robert D. Cobb: Within the industry, who is your inspiration?
Lauren Melissa Hodgkins: “I have always been inspired by Heidi Somers, Paige Hathaway, Jessica Arevalo, and Candice Swanepoel.”
Robert D. Cobb: What is your secret to staying in shape?
Lauren Melissa Hodgkins: “My secret is there is no secret. Don’t hate me, but diet and exercise are key. And consistency. Stick with it.
Go to the gym, do your workouts, don’t get discouraged. Eat the best you can, and don’t be too hard on yourself. If you slip up and skip the gym a few days in a row, or maybe have one too many cookies – don’t lose heart.
We’re only human. It’s okay to indulge but do everything in moderation. Fitness and health is a lifestyle, not a diet.”
Robert D. Cobb: Describe your workout routine?
Lauren Melissa Hodgkins: “I’m a huge advocate of lifting.
But I usually warm up with some cardio first, at least ten minutes on the stair master, elliptical, treadmill, or the bikes.
Then I’ll get into some light stretching before I start lifting.
Deadlifts and squats are my absolute favorites, but of course I’ve got to rotate the muscle groups I work. I try to isolate two muscle groups at a time each time I work out, going to the gym probably 4-5 days a week.”
Robert D. Cobb: What’s the best way to stay motivated?
Lauren Melissa Hodgkins: “I think it’s important to keep your mind on your goals. Have a structured schedule to keep you on track, but make sure you reward yourself a couple times a week so you don’t go crazy.
Eat clean as much as you can, keep in mind that you’re doing this for your long-term health, not just to look good. But reward yourself with a cheat meal on a Friday night to satisfy those cravings.”
Robert D. Cobb: With spring now here, what workout tips do you suggest?
Lauren Melissa Hodgkins: “Honestly, any workout is better than no workout. You really can’t have a “bad workout”.
I suggest cranking up the intensity on the cardio routine (something I need to work on myself) during the warmer weather, this will help you shed excess water weight and give you an overall leaner look.
Higher reps with lower weights will also help give you that nice toned look.”
Robert D. Cobb: Outside of modeling, what are your hobbies?
Lauren Melissa Hodgkins: “Currently, I am trying to teach myself how to play the guitar! I also enjoy drawing, particularly sketching.
Anything in the realm of creative arts is right up my ally.”
Sports question: Who are your favorite teams and clubs
Lauren Melissa Hodgkins: “I’m a Boston girl, so naturally an intrinsic love for the Patriots and the Red Sox is in my DNA.”
Robert D. Cobb: What are your favorite cities to travel to?
Lauren Melissa Hodgkins: “I love my city. Boston will always be home. But I would be lying if I said I didn’t crave the warm weather – Daytona, Florida and Honolulu Hawaii are places I crave on a daily basis.”
Robert D. Cobb: What advice would you give to women aspiring to get into modeling?
Lauren Melissa Hodgkins: “Start somewhere, start small, start something. Even if what you are doing is not getting any recognition, stick with it. Have your friends take pictures of you on their cell phone, or get in touch with a local photographer. Little steps lead to big results – stick with what you’re passionate about and never give up.”
Special thanks to Ms. Lauren Melissa Hodgkins for her time and assistance during the Q and A interview process. Images are the property of their respective owners and used with permission.