After living an “unhealthy” lifestyle, with “lots of drinking, eating junk food at bad times of the evening” thanks to late-night tour finishes, Dara Hayes (aka, DJ Tigerlily) has completely transformed her lifestyle. Now, the 29-year-old – who works out multiple times a week and follows a vegan diet – is a poster child for wellness.
Here, we talk to her about everything she eats in a day – and other wellness practices she swears by.
How do you maintain a healthy plant-based lifestyle?
For me it’s all about balance. I love to eat lots of fresh fruit and veggies each day but I also love snacking on salty things like chips and crackers… so I tried to make 80% of my day healthy and fresh, and let myself be flexible with the other 20%. Little habits that I have picked up which definitely help me to stay healthy are drinking lots of water throughout the day, making smoothies that are packed with fruit and veggies, and ensuring that my cupboards are always full of snacks for when I get peckish.
What does a day on a plate look like for you?
As a touring DJ, I do spend a lot of my weekends on the road. Therefore, my plate changes according to where I am. However, when I’m home during the week, it looks a little something like this:
6am: Water on waking up to kick start my digestion and hydrate my body from the night before
8am: Black coffee after my workout and shower. I like to drink my coffee while I plan my day.
9am: Breakfast at the moment is avocado, tomato, celery and kimchi on sourdough toast. I don’t know what it is about this combination but I’m in love!
12:30pm: Quick lunch break in between work (zoom meetings at the moment) means I grab a Ruffie Rustic Foods Frozen meal from the freezer. The portobello mushroom risotto with white beans is currently my favourite.
3:30: Afternoon snacks are usually lentil chips, carrots with hummus, or fruit!
7:00pm: My favourite dinner at the moment is mushroom meat tacos, loaded with homemade guac, and veggies!
Favourite vegan snack?
If I’m on the go I always grab a Tropeaka Chocolate protein bar. Fruit is always a really good option for me and I eat a LOT of fruit each day! If I’m after something yummy but semi-healthy, I’ve been recently snacking on salt and vinegar chickpea puffs!
What’s your workout schedule like?
I train 5 days a week. Usually it’s a combination of running, reformer pilates and weight sessions at the gym. I also go for two walks a day with my dog and try to incorporate a few sessions of yoga at home each week to help my body recover from the training. I love moving my body so much, it’s really important for my sleep and my mental health!
Example of a workout session?
This morning was the first weekday in our Sydney lockdown so I did an 1000 rep challenge at the park. It included 100 of each of the following exercises with a warm up run and warm down run. Squats, Heel taps, Pushups, Glue Bridges, Split Squats, High Knees, Bicep Curls, Tricep Dips, Planking shoulder taps and Burpees!
What other wellness practices do you follow in everyday life?
Other elements of my self-care routine include meditation, I use the app headspace and really love it. Stretching and yoga at home, I use an app called DownDog! Supplementation is a focus for me too, and being vegan I go to the GP twice a year to make sure my bloods are all okay and I’m getting all the vitamins and minerals I need in abundance!