Tales of Endearment’s Natalie Joos shares her work-out secrets as she runs the New York streets, bikes her way across bridges and tunnels, smashes up the tennis court and glides through her reformer Pilates routine in adidas by Stella McCartney.
You were born in Belgium, what led you to New York?
When I finished university in Belgium I moved to London for one year to study at the London College of Fashion. I was always fascinated by London and the world of fashion and that was my big chance to get the best of both worlds. In school I met an American girl called Maria Chen who asked if I would do PR for her brand in New York. She had a teeny store on Mulberry Street. And so I packed my bags, settled downtown and never came back!
Describe a typical New York day for Natalie Joos
I spend most of my day behind the computer really. I answer and write millions of e-mails. I’ll have the odd fitting for a party, and a lunch or dinner to attend. I also organize shoots for Tales of Endearment, either of a Muse who I visit, or with my photographer to post a new outfit. I have my meetings at Soho House and go to the gym on 14th Street. It never gets boring.
Your work-out schedule is quite varied, can you tell us about the different disciplines you take on
I don’t like the word ‘work-out’. For starters because it has the word ‘work’ in it. Staying in shape should not be work, it should be fun! The easiest way to start is to get on your bike instead of taking a taxi or subway. It’s a full-body experience. I’ve heard so many women say they suddenly had a six-pack after they started using those city bikes. I live in Williamsburg so I have to get across the bridge twice in the day. I exercise my legs, my arms, my core, just by going from A to B. The only time I step into the gym is to train on the reformer with Leslie at Clay. It’s magic! I should mention I have a herniated disk so pilates is just about the only body work-out I can do. Not even yoga. Pilates doesn’t make you sweat or huff and puff, it’s pure lengthening and strengthening, and your abs become rocks! You see results after just 5 sessions! I also run for cardio. Either at the beginning of my day, or around sunset, just 15 to 20 minutes, a couples of times a week, with blasting hip hop or techno in my ears. I love running when I’m traveling. Even during fashion week I run in the park across the street from the Principe Hotel or along the Seine. It’s the perfect way to unwind. And tennis is really the only sport I practice. I’ve been playing since I was 11 years old and played competitively until I was 17. It’s not easy to find people who play well, so it doesn’t happen that often. I hire a pro mostly, and hit my ass off!
How do these different aspects complement each other?
Each aspect of my routine satisfies me in a different way. Running is for cardio, tennis to exercise my competitive nature, pilates is for strength and shape and bicycle is just a means of transportation.
How do you prepare for a work-out?
I put on a comfortable outfit, usually something really small and fitting. I stretch my calf muscles and I do it.
What is most important to you in your work-out wardrobe?
It’s important that you stay cool and comfortable. I always like to see what I’m doing too, what muscles I’m working and if I’m doing it right, so I wear fitted, tight clothing. Cropped, fitted sports bras and bicycle shorts or the adidas by Stella McCartney running tights.
How do you combine style with performance?
adidas by Stella McCartney is really the only attire that has both performance and style. I love the soft fabrics, the strong colours and the designs. I never really put much thought into my outfits until I discovered her line. But it makes total sense to also feel cool and comfortable while you’re busting moves.
Can you tell us your picks from the Autumn Winter collection?
I chose the Boost running shoe, black running tights with parachute shorts. Cropped sports bras in grey and white and leopard print mat tights. For tennis I wore adidas by Stella McCartney Barricade performance clothing and shoes.