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Celebrity Health - Andrea McLean

TV presenter turned life coach Andrea McLean talks to Liz Parry about her big leap of faith

Images of Andrea McLean © Nicky Johnson

Leaving a well-paid, established job to retrain in a completely new area is undoubtedly a brave move – particularly during a global pandemic. But that's exactly what TV presenter Andrea McLean did when she left her role on ITV's Loose Women after 13 years. Now, the 52-year-old is an accredited life coach and the CEO and co-founder of the female empowerment site This Girl is on Fire.

Q You have gone through some major changes over the past year! How are you feeling about it all?

Andrea: Life is really good! I'm feeling like I'm doing what I was meant to do at a time that I was meant to do it. It's like everything has brought me to this place.

Q What was the main catalyst for you to make these big changes?

Andrea: I'd started my website, This Girl is on Fire, which is an online community to help women think differently and feel better about themselves. Then, during the pandemic, I realised that I was waiting for the perfect moment when I could devote all my time to it, but that moment was never going to come.

I realised I was being held back by fear and that sometimes you just need to be scared and do it anyway. So, I made the decision that I was ready to jump in and go for it. My husband and I sat and talked it through and then I decided to leave my TV job to focus on the business.

Q You describe This Girl is on Fire as "a gym for the mind". What do you mean by that?

Andrea: We came up with that description because we offer various classes that you can attend, but they're classes to help you work on your personal growth. You can do as many or as few as you want, but you need to put the work in. We have master classes where I interview experts, and we also have coaching and live events. But at the heart of it all is a sense of humour and a lightness of touch because that's how I am and it's how I've always presented and worked. What I want is for people to come away thinking that they have really learnt something.

Q Your latest book, You Just Need to Believe It, includes a 10-day challenge encouraging readers to step out of their comfort zone and overcome their fears. Tell us about this.

Andrea: The book is based on a challenge that I wrote for the women in my online community. Although it was written for women, anyone can do it. It was written to try and help women to feel stronger in themselves and to show them not to be so overwhelmed that they're locked away by fear. Try to use your fear in a way that it works with you.

Q In the book you talk about the importance of establishing a morning routine. Can you tell us about how you start your day?

Andrea: The first thing that I do when I get up is I make my bed. The idea is that it's a reward for the end of the day, to get into a beautifully made bed. The second thing I do is I drink a big glass of water with a squeeze of lemon juice in to detoxify my body. Then I meditate. Sometimes it's five minutes, sometimes it's half an hour. It really depends on how long I've got. I have a meditation app that I use. I'll either listen to a guided meditation or I'll just listen to the sound of trickling water and focus on my breathing. It makes a huge difference because if you start the day grounded, you tend to stay grounded. Then, I will either do some yoga or just some stretching depending on how busy I am. The final thing that I do is I have a shower and I finish by turning the water on to cold.

I really focus hard on my breathing and I repeat a mantra in my mind. It sounds a bit bonkers but it really helps with calming stress. It's called the Wim Hof Method. The reason why it works is that your mind and body understands that it's about to experience a stressful thing and so you learn to become calm. I don't always want to do it, but I always feel great afterwards.

Q Is healthy eating and nutrition important to you?

Andrea: Yes and it always has been, so that's why I don't really think about it too much. I've always liked eating healthily but I think it's all about balance. I also like Jaffa Cakes! I make sure that I start the day with a smoothie which has plenty of goodness in that keeps me going for a while. It's not about dieting, it's about eating well.

Q Do you take any vitamins or supplements?

Andrea: I use the vitamin sprays from Better You which you spray under the tongue. I take vitamin D and I also take a multivitamin spray as well as one for hair and nails. I take a daily probiotic each morning too.

Q What sort of exercise do you enjoy?


At the moment, yoga. Everyone thinks that I must be super bendy but I'm really not. Every morning I'm like the tin man who hasn't been oiled. I'm so clunky and not bendy! But I enjoy it and I like how it makes me feel really strong. I enjoy running, but if it's freezing cold and sleeting then I'm not doing it because there's no joy in that. So once the weather gets a bit better, I will probably be out shuffling. It's so important to enjoy exercise and not get stressed about it. Wellness, fitness and diet should make you feel good about yourself.

Q What would you say to other women who might be thinking that it's too late for them to make big changes in their lives?

Andrea: I would give them a big hug and I would tell them it's never too late to make a change. And I would also tell them that I totally get it. We're living in this weird social media world where once you get past a certain age you become invisible and irrelevant. That's how it can feel. But in reality there are loads of amazing women who are doing their own thing and not giving a hoot what other people are thinking about them. I'm a big believer in surrounding yourself with things that make you feel good and motivate you. On my phone I have a picture of Jennifer Lopez, who is the same age as me. Underneath there is a quote where she says: "You're never too old to reinvent yourself," and I think that's so true.

You Just Need to Believe It: 10 Ways in 10 Days to Unlock Your Courage and Reclaim Your Power by Andrea McLean is out now (£12.99, Hay House) Visit to find out more about Andrea's online personal growth community for women.

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