Being in the media spotlight at the age of 15 must have been tough, how did you manage?
Yes it was extremely tough, but I had fantastic parents that nurtured me through and helped me with media commitments. Sometimes it would put me under enormous stress and pressure, but I believe it made me stronger.
If you could have competed at any other sport, summer or winter, what would you have picked?
I would have chosen cross country alpine skiing.
How important was it for you to have a strong support network whilst competing at such a young age?
It was crucial that I had a strong and positive network around me. My parents, siblings and school friends were amazing and without their encouragement, there's no way I would have lasted so long in the sport.
Who is your biggest inspiration and why?
My biggest inspiration is Lorna Jane and Donna Hay, as they both started a small business from the ground up and now are iconic in their fields.
How has being an ambassador for Jenny Craig & hosting The Biggest Loser changed your life?
Jenny Craig made me believe that I could lose weight at a time when I believed I was destined to be in the overweight category, The Biggest Loser changed my life because I never thought I would fit into the 'TV world', but I love the role as host as it enables me to be 'nurturing, caring and sympathetic' which I feel is a big part of my personality. When I swam, I never felt like I was tough enough.
What are your top five inspirational tips for achieving in sport?
Top 5 tips - train hard, have a specific goal, be organised, stretch, eat and sleep well.
What are your top holiday destinations & why?
Yamba NSW because it's quiet and the beaches are amazing.
What advice do you have for families who are looking to make a healthy lifestyle change?
My advice would be to start in the pantry and throw out everything that is bad for you. See a nutritionist to put you on a healthy eating regime. Spend time exercising together and make individual goals. Supporting each other is key.
What is your favourite healthy meal and could you please give us the recipe?
Favourite healthy meal is (breakfast or snack) Blitz 2 go protein shake - ingredients: skim milk, protein powder, berries and honey.
Please tell us about your favourite exercise routine?
Favourite exercise is a 10km run followed by a 3km swim.
How important is it for kids to learn how to swim & have fun in the water?
Learning to swim as a baby should be a 'law' in Australia. We are surrounded by water, therefore it should be mandatory that every toddler by the age of three can jump/fall into the water and get themselves back to the side of the pool (with clothes on).
What is your favourite hobby and why?
Favourite hobby is reading and chilling out.
About Hayley Lewis
Born on 2 March 1974 in Queensland, Hayley has had a colourful career to date, debuting as a professional swimmer at the young age of 15.
She was a high achiever at various Commonwealth and Olympic Games during her swimming career, winning a number of medals before retiring in 2001.
With a strong passion for independence and entrepreneurship, Hayley successfully opened 'Hayley Lewis Swim School' in Brisbane 2002. Hayley then went on to pursue her next business venture 'Coming Up Roses' gifts and home ware store in Brisbane after the swim school closed down in 2010.
Running these two successful business' inspired Hayley to write her very own book 'Dream, Believe, Create' in 2011 - a step by step guide to starting a small business.
Hayley was approached to be an ambassador for Jenny Craig, at which point she turned her lifestyle around to become more aware of her health, fitness and quality of life. She has always been an avid fan of the Australian Biggest Loser television series, so when Hayley was asked to host the 5th series in 2010, she was extremely delighted. She has hosted each series since and is currently on set for The Australian Biggest Loser 2014.
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Get Ahead Kids® Mar/Apr 2014