My active life: Spotlight on Vie Activist, Rockell Williamson-Rudder

Posted on 22 September 2013

Guest Post: Vie Activist, Rockell Williamson-Rudder.

International Director of Xtend Barre and owner of Xtend Barre Sydney and Drummoyne, Rockell embodies all that Vie Active is. We sat down with her for a virtual chat to discuss what motivates her, and how she maintains a healthy and active life (while running a business and running around after 2 young boys!).


3 1/2 years ago I found myself living in the desert!  My husband works with an Australian vocal group that has a show in Las Vegas so we packed up and moved here.  Leaving everything that we know and love about Australia with the amazing beaches, lifestyle, and fresh produce (I could keep going on!), was quite difficult BUT we have been pleasantly surprised by how great Las Vegas and its surrounding areas are.  You can drive any direction from Vegas and find yourself in incredible locations for skiing, hiking and much more and then there is of course the famous Las Vegas strip, so there is no shortage of world class shows and exhibitions and amazing things to see like the botanical gardens and the Bellagio to visit anytime you like.  The Children’s Museum is fabulous here and Red Rock Canyon is only 25 mins drive and great for hikes. 

I had a wonderful career as a dancer and in the entertainment world and part way through that I started doing my Pilates training.  As a dancer it was a very natural progression and I loved it.  I taught at lots of studios in Sydney before moving to the Sunshine Coast and opening a Pilate’s studio there.  Leaving that studio was one of the hardest things about moving to the USA.  Finding Xtend Barre was the magic I needed to feel content here.  I am a master trainer for Xtend Barre, help design new material and am the International Director where I am blessed to be surrounded by incredibly passionate people that don’t just love Xtend Barre but love life and love helping people reach their health goals.   On a personal level, I think Xtend Barre has felt so right from day 1 as it marries both the worlds I love - dance and Pilates/fitness. 

  • How do you live an active life, what’s your favourite way to stay fit? Xtend Barre of course.  I work long hours so if I can’t make it to a studio I have a Pilates reformer, Ballet Barre and other Pilates equipment in my office so whether it is 10 mins or an hour I make sure I have time to do something every day.   My body responds well to this type of training.  I can’t be stuck on a treadmill or in a gym.  I am most happy when I am moving my body in a way that feels like dance or has breadth to the movement. I like colour and movement in my training so whether that be the variety of an Xtend Barre class, a Pilates session or playing with my boys in the backyard it has to feel special and motivating.
  • What is your favourite thing to do on the weekend? Be with my family.  To be honest I don’t mind what we do as long as we are together.  It can be as simple as going to wholefoods to pick up a juice and play at the park.  The weeks can be hectic with fitting in work, after school activities, homework etc so taking the time to regroup and connect on the weekend is special.  I travel a lot as well so any chance we have to just hang out to together is really sacred to us. 
  • What’s your style like when you’re not working out? Very simple.  I am a jeans and tank girl and love an awesome t-shirt.  I would be quite happy in this every day, as long as I have amazing shoes and a fabulous handbag to go with them :). My go-to brands are Rag and Bone jeans and tanks, J Brand and Splendid plain tanks or Ikks and anything Helmut Lang.
  • Tell us about your eating habits (what you eat/ what you avoid)? I try to eat clean foods.  I am not crazy strict but avoid gluten, added sugar and no processed foods.  I don’t eat red meat and am addicted to Spinach and green juices with lots of ginger.   I lover super foods like quinoa.  Whether it is a Paleo diet, Raw Foods, or something else, I think it is nice to learn different recipes and try different things to see how best your body reacts and what your body needs.  I am very excited to start our Xtend Barre 60 day challenge to tidy up any unnecessary things in my diet.  I have a weakness for coffee and cheese! Our challenge is an amazing journey where you choose your physical challenge and your dietary challenge.  You can read a little more about it here.
  • How do you find balance? I am trying to get better at this all the time.  When you are an entrepreneur there are no hours so it can be very very easy to loose perspective and balance in your life.  What I have taken on board is that what someone else says is ‘balance’ may not fit my ‘balance’.  Rather than put pressure on myself to find balance I have started to schedule things in my life to create more balance which might mean scheduling a class in the middle of the day to step away from my desk for an hour or ensuring the moment I blow the candle out on my desk I don’t go back to the office.  I work from home, which has lots of positive but can leave you in a world that has not beginning and end to each day.  Doing little rituals to sign in and out of my day to create time for my family and me is how I feel more balanced.  It’s working.... most days and the days that it doesn’t I don’t give myself a hard time about.  Part of my balance is being OK with the routine or rituals going out the window.
  • What does living an active life mean to you? Being Happy.  I get to do a job I love every day so that means the moment I wake up I feel active.  If I can find a way to positively effect peoples lives then I feel happy and like I am leading an active life.
  • What’s your top workout tactic? Discipline.  That is probably an old dancer trait.  There is no copping out.  You always had to "bring it" to the dance floor and when I work out I know that is my time in the day so I make the most of it.  Something else that works fabulously is buying a pack of classes and pre booking.  You are less likely to cancel a class if you have paid good money for it where as a gym membership sometimes makes it easy for you to raincheck a class.
  • What do you look for in activewear? Great fits, moisture wicking fabrics and something I can start the day in and still feel comfortable to finish the day wearing for school pick up or going to the supermarket.
  • Why is Vie Active your top choice for active wear? It’s ticks all of the above!!  I also like that it is a proactive company and supports our wool industry.
  • What are the benefits of wearing this range when training? Firstly I feel quite unique and that my clothing choice is fresh and different to everything else.  I also like the feel of the fabrics on my skin.
  • How does this enhance your workout? and post workout? The old saying, looking good is feeling good.  We think about what we wear if we go for a lunch or to an event, so why not feel good about what you are wearing to workout.  I like that the range feels fun and matches my mood to do an Xtend Barre class.  Post workout, I can leave class and even if I have been dripping in sweat, before long I am dry again in the fabrics of Vie Active’s tanks.
  • How does wearing the range make you feel? Like a sexy Leopard!
  • What are your favourite pieces from the range? Everyone should have a Libby Hoodie!  This is my new travel companion.  I’ve been wearing it on and off the plane.  The Lee scoop tank also is uber flattering!

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