Plus killer snack ideas, going to the gym at the crack of dawn & more.
All too often, twins are generalized as having some sort of otherworldly, little-girls-from-The-Shining thing going on. Just us? You know: two siblings who are cosmically, psychically intertwined and in tune. Shit gets weird. And while we're going to skip alluding to any of that when it comes to TK and Cipriana Quann (also known as the Urban Bush Babes, who you might remember from this), we do feel pretty damn comfortable in going out on a limb and suggesting that when it comes to their health and wellness routine, the sisters are more or less in sync. They're admirably dedicated to the cause, but allow time to act (in other words, eat and completely veg out) like real people too. Here's how they do it.
On their definition of wellness:
TK: "Being active in feeling good about yourself mentally and physically."
Cipriana: "Loving yourself, and being content in all aspects of your life, from health to career, lifestyle and relationships."
On their wellness goals (actually ones, not the hashtag kind):
TK: "Eating right, and living right, while treating others right. Sometimes you will be surprised how much stress can negatively affect the body not only mentally, but physically. It's unavoidable in life, the healthier you are in all aspects the mind and body has tremendous power in damage control."
Cipriana: "To continue in making my wellness goals not goals, but a habit. A habit that feels so natural, it becomes part of my routine. As casually as brushing my teeth."
On how they stay hydrated:
TK: "The adage, "You are what you eat," well I'm definitely what I drink. I drink so much water I feel like a walking fire hydrant."
Cipriana: "Water and juicing."
On how they stay sane:
TK: "To quote a very wise woman, 'These are a few of my favorite things...' Laughter, love, reading, writing, music, food, dancing, travel and conversation with loved ones."
Cipriana: "Took many many years to really grasp this, but I make sure I constantly clean house regarding the environment I consistently place myself into. It is so important to surround yourself with positive energy, whether that be individuals, career, lifestyle. Like energy attracts like energy, you want to make sure this is a mantra you instill daily! Without sounding like a Woodstock hippie (or maybe I already failed), you will be surprised how keeping a circle of positive, motivated family and friends will inspire you even more. I was in an unhealthy relationship for years, and once I shed that part of my life, positive opportunities came flooding in. It was like that negative energy radiated this unseen wall of blockage, and when I let it go, it made room for all the things that were just waiting for me, but it couldn't be released until I changed my life into an environment where it could flourish."
On how they stay healthy while travelling:
TK: "I travel quite a bit during the summer, three-to-four months out of the year, performing at festivals in Europe, so I've always been a fan of working out indoors and workouts that implement using your own body weight. Also, besides vocals, my performances incorporate dancing onstage, so that's an added bonus for my workout regimen. In regards to eating, I cut out meat, with the exception of fish, from my diet, concentrating on grains, greens, calcium, protein and water throughout the day."
Cipriana: "I travel with my own healthy snacks (saves on crazy airport costs!) and request and seek out hotels with gyms."
On the weirdest thing they've ever tried in the name of wellness:
TK: "Nothing exciting to report, but if the FDA were to claim cupcakes are now an important part of your daily food group, I wouldn't argue."
Cipriana: "Tried consuming a special cuisine high in protein that contained crickets and mealworms. I kept thinking about Jimmy the Cricket from Pinocchio. To each their own but for me... um, no."
On their favorite things to cook:
TK: "Something healthy and quick."
Cipriana: "I love to cook, so with a lot of love. For the most part, I keep it healthy, creative and all about presentation. I tend to make seafood veggie combos often, like soy almond crusted asparagus with scallops on a bed of seasoned kale, or quinoa salmon stuffed green peppers, with a side of mixed green salad, topped with homemade celery dressing, sunflower seeds, caramelized garlic brussels sprouts and feta cheese. Though I absolutely adore baking desserts... hey, you have to treat yourself!"
On their favorite healthy snacks:
TK: "Cashews, especially Trader Joe's spicy Thai cashews, Garden of Eatin' Spicy Blue Chips and green-based smoothies with ginger."
Cipriana: "Wasabi and soy almonds, dried seaweed, sushi, black bean tortilla chips with beet or edamame hummus."
On their favorite indulgences:
TK: "Cupcakes, burgers and cheese."
Cipriana: "Something that should never have been invented, it is so bad but good, called Speculoos Cookie Butter. Basically Belgian cookies, crushed into the consistency of peanut butter... your mind will be blown!"
On the first thing they do every morning:
Cipriana: "Play music! Most morning vibes are Jimi Hendrix, Pink Floyd, Lorna Lee, Led Zeppelin, Sade, Radiohead, Nina Simone, Little Dragon, Emiliana Torrini, Miles Davis, Glass Animals."
On their favorite healthy restaurants in New York:
TK: "To name a few: Cheryl's, Blue Ribbon, Cafe Mogador and Sushi Samba."
Cipriana: "Streets BK, Pure Food and Wine, ABC Kitchen, The Fat Radish, Charlie Bird, Hu Kitchen."
On their favorite ways to break a sweat:
TK: "The same workout regimens when I travel. At home workouts, implementing my own body weight."
Cipriana: "Well, my typical day-to-day usually involves the gym, but I love sports and dance. Boxing and ballroom dancing, or just dancing in general are my favorite workouts."
On how they caffeinate:
TK: "I'm the coffee or tea person, and 99% of the time, I'd rather a green tea with ginger and honey or chamomile with almond milk and honey."
Cipriana: "I don't drink coffee everyday, but when I do, I am really no fuss and like it black... or some fuss, and spice it up with chili powder, brown sugar and crystallized ginger."
On their go-to post-workout eat:
TK: "Granola bar."
Cipriana: "I tend to juice before and after, and eat foods high in protein as well after, especially since I love calisthenics and lifting weights at the gym."
On their favorite breakfast:
TK: "Some form of grain with fruit."
Cipriana: "Warm quinoa or steel oats with cinnamon and agave syrup, with a side of some sort of kale-infused smoothie or juice."
On being a night owl or early riser:
TK: "Depends on schedule of the day but usually an early riser."
Cipriana: "Definitely early riser everyday and many times a night owl. I know it's not the best, but sometimes due to work I choose both."
On how their idea of wellness has changed over the years:
TK: "I stopped comparing the way my body works with others, realizing that not everyone will have the same results in their physique because everyone is not built the same, and started focusing on the way my body responds to diet and workout regimens. Feeling good about yourself in a healthy way is imperative for the mind and body, and those results are beneficial to not only yourself, but for mankind. Imagine how different our world would be if everyone felt good about themselves in a healthy way. That is a powerful trigger in the way you treat others."
Cipriana: "My perspective has changed in not only regarding a healthy lifestyle in terms of just the physical aspect, but the mental aspect as well. How happy you are with what you are doing, who you surround yourself with, environment, all play a large role."
On their advice to anyone looking to live a healthier lifestyle:
TK: "One day at a time, starting today. Sometimes it is in our nature to procrastinate (most of us are culpable, including myself) and say, 'Oh I'll start next week, or next month.' Start today, even if it is for ten or fifteen minutes, whether it be eating something healthy, or working out. Sometimes people view healthy regimens as a bit daunting, but so to speak, you don't have to bite it off in one chunk right away. Exercise for fifteen minutes every day, until at least you can incorporate thirty minutes. I think most people can find at least thirty minutes in their schedule to incorporate a workout regimen, even if in ten minute intervals throughout the day. Also remember, thirty minutes of intense workout is better than a low key hour, so don't think thirty minutes won't be as valuable as an hour. When it comes to food, view healthy choices as an enjoyable way of living. I have two amazing boyfriends: one for eight years, and the other I have known all my life. Food! When you understand the way your body reacts to foods, that knowledge can be a wonderful deterrent. Life is all about balance and hopefully the good outweighs the bad in maintaining a healthy lifestyle."
Cipriana: "Cater the lifestyle to fit your needs so it leaves less room for excuses, and becomes more of a habit. Sometimes we get so wrapped up in other people's routines, we aren't able to see how we could make it work for ourselves. When I talk about how many mornings I wake up at 5:30 AM to hit the gym at 6, I often get the side eye, but I am never offended. I just laugh and know that due to my schedule, the mornings suit me best for working out. Sometimes I have a tendency to make excuses for opting out when it is later in the day. So do what works for you, even if it means a midnight fitness session. Also, don't be too hard on yourself. We are all human. Visualize how you want to make changes and do something little everyday to make it a reality."