There are so many reasons why we can’t get enough of Julianne Hough. With her upbeat television personality as host of “Dancing with the Stars,” unparalleled talent as a professional dancer and recent gusto while speaking about her health struggles with endometriosis, we’re keen on taking a cue from her mental and physical daily health habits.
Hough has now partnered with SpeakENDO to raise awareness about endometriosis. LIVESTRONG caught up with her to learn more about her battle with the disease and to find out what she does every day to stay energized yet calm and healthy but not deprived. She was also willing to give us a few juicy tidbits on how things are going with her new hubs. So, of course, we were all ears.
How Her Husband Helps Her Stay Healthy
Hough married professional ice hockey player Brook Laiche in 2017, and while most newlyweds might love to get out on the town, it may surprise you to learn that these two spend quality time together by going to bed early.
“He is the champion of championing our healthy living,” she says. “He wakes up early and goes to bed early, so if I want to hang out with him I have to go to bed early and wake up early.” This is a refreshing change for Hough, as working in entertainment set her up for some late nights.
Plus, we can’t blame her for hitting the sack by 10 p.m. considering Laiche makes her fresh juice every morning. The ingredients? Beets, celery, cucumber, lemon and ginger. She says downing the 12-ounce juice every morning leaves her energized.
Her Food and Fitness Go-Tos
Aside from juicing, Hough has a protein shake after her workouts and makes sure to eat healthy fats (recommended for women living with endometriosis) throughout the day. “I love avocados so much,” she says. “Sometimes I’ll just scoop it right out of the shell — which my husband hates. I'm like 'give me all your avocados!'."
As for her workout philosophy, she says it’s all about “mixing it up,” including HIIT workouts or anything that will shock her body. But she admits that at the core she is a dancer, and dance will continue to be her favorite way to break a sweat. Not only for the emotional release and building
“With dancing, you use every muscle in your body. Even muscles you didn’t know you had because they’re so deep,” she says. “The way that you move your body is what makes a dancer’s body.”
How She Wards Off Stress With Her Morning Routine
Hough starts her day with priming — a morning exercise promoted by life coach Tony Robbins. Priming is a physical exercise that involves rapid breathing that is meant to change your state of mind. “I breathe in and out of my nose 30 times, for three times, and I think of things that I’m grateful for,” she says. “Or things I want to achieve that day. And by achieve, I mean put a smile on someone’s face.”
And for Hough attainability is key when setting goals. “I think when sometimes we put goals that are so big out there and they feel so far away it can be discouraging.”
After her daily goals are set, Hough makes a cup of tea (her favorite go-to is Lipton) and then spends the morning with her two Cavalier pups, Lexi and Harley.
In the past Hough spent her mornings rushing right out the door, but now she focuses on staying present and peaceful — part of what she attributes to her mental health. “I was always thinking, ‘What’s next, what’s next, what’s next?,’” she says, “versus just sitting and noticing my surroundings.”
Why She Wants You to Talk About Endometriosis
In 2008 Hough was diagnosed with endometriosis, a uterine disease that impacts 10 percent of women and causes extreme pain, cramping and fertility complications. In recent years Hough and other celebrities living with the disease (like Lena Dunham) are bringing it out into the spotlight because endometriosis is commonly not talked about.
“All I can say is that I want to bring awareness to women to speak up,” she says. “At the end of the day, if we’re having a conversation about something that people find uncomfortable to talk about, we need to change that. That’s what ‘speaking endo’ [related to the campaign she is the spokesperson for] is about.”
She also wants to help build a support group for those 10 percent of women who are living with the disease, in survivor mode, with no one to talk to — an isolating experience she herself knew well until she gained the courage to seek help.
“It’s OK to ask for help, and I think that especially young women [should] reach out to your friends, reach out to your families, have mentors,” she says. “It’s a really powerful thing to ask for help. With vulnerability comes strength, and I can’t agree with that more, especially when it comes to endometriosis.”
About the Author
Michelle Vartan is the Managing Editor at LIVESTRONG.COM and founder and co-host of the Stronger Women series and the Stronger podcast. She has a Master's in Broadcast Journalism from USC and has previously worked for the TODAY Show, San Francisco Magazine, Angeleno Magazine, Outside Magazine and the New York Post. She is a mission-oriented journalist, editor and producer living in Los Angeles. You can follow Michelle on Twitter or Instagram.