Lauren Imparato is the author of RETOX and a yoga teacher who has led classes in Times Square and Central Park in New York, and at the Cannes Film Festival with tens of thousands of attendees
Lauren Imparato left her corporate job at Wall Street in 2009 and launched I.Am.You and quickly made herself a name in the wellness scene. She is well known for her straight up and real approach, and she is also one of MindBodyGreen’s 100 Women to Watch in Wellness.
YOU WENT FROM WALL STREET TO WELLNESS. HOW DID YOU MAKE THAT CHANGE?
It was a difficult decision. I loved Wall Street. It was a great place to learn how to run a business, work as a team and assess risk. I never wanted to leave. It was tough to quit, and it was scary too. I left it all on the table. It felt like jumping off a ledge into the vast unknown. No one really knows how to be an entrepreneur, and I had no idea how to apply my skills to the wellness world. But I still went ahead and did it.
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO PUBLISH RETOX: YOGA*FOODS*ATTITUDE HEALTHY SOLUTIONS FOR REAL LIFE?
I was sick of all the wellness books out there, most of them completely unrealistic for people working intense, full-time jobs in urban and suburban centers. I wanted to create a handbook on how to always feel, think, and act your best no matter what life throws at you.
YOU’VE TAUGHT YOGA TO 10,000 PEOPLE IN TIMES SQUARE. WHAT KIND OF AN IMPACT DID THAT HAVE ON YOUR LIFE?
Honestly, it often feels quite surreal. I think most of all, it made me realize how, if you study, work hard and above, are honest and real, you can help others become their best selves.
DESCRIBE YOURSELF IN THREE WORDS
Intense, energetic, happy.
THE CHARACTERISTIC YOU LIKE LEAST IN YOURSELF
I have been trying to not fixate on what I do not like and instead focus on all that is good. I guess fixating on what I do not like is the characteristic I least like!
WHAT DID YOU WANT TO BE WHEN YOU WERE YOUNG?
An author, entrepreneur, and the first female president.
WHAT’S THE BEST ADVICE YOU’VE EVER BEEN GIVEN?
Never compromise your integrity and always be real.
WHAT ARE YOU CURRENTLY WORKING ON?
Me. I have been giving freely of myself for decades to hundreds of people a week. Now I am working on giving to me.
DO YOU SPEND MUCH TIME ON SOCIAL MEDIA?
Not much – I am convinced it kills brain cells! When I am on social media I try to share a concept or convey a story that will add real value to someone’s life, rather than another selfie or clip of someone eating an ice cream cone.
HOW DO YOU DEAL WITH CRITICISM?
Ignore it, or so I try! People are always criticizing and attacking, often without even knowing you or your story. I have learned that ignoring it is best.
DO YOU MAINLY KEEP FIT WITH YOGA?
I use my yoga method – RETOX – to keep fit in body and mind.
Swimmig, running, hoops.
FAVORITE ACTIVEWEAR BRAND
FAVORITE HOLIDAY DESTINATION
TREASURED HOTEL OR RESORT
Anywhere in Europe on the water.
YOUR FAVORITE SPA
The Rosewood Sand Hill in Northern California.
See also: Hannah Bronfman – Fitness Queen
3 THINGS YOU WOULD PACK
Bathing suit, sunglasses, notebook and pen.
YOUR TRAVEL ATTIRE
Black pants, Nike hoodie and kicks.
FAVORITE ‘ME’ TIME
YOUR BEAUTY SECRET
FOOD YOU CRAVE
WHAT KEEPS YOU UP AT NIGHT?
Worrying that I am not doing enough.
WHAT INSPIRES YOU?
ON YOUR PLAYLIST
Tom Petty, since always and for ever.
WHO DO YOU FOLLOW ON INSTAGRAM?
Friends and restaurants mainly.
WEBSITES YOU REGULARLY VISIT
I try and stay offline as much as possible.
THE BOOK ON YOUR BEDSIDE TABLE
SOMETHING YOU CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT
YOUR FAVORITE QUOTE
“Learn like you live forever. Live like you die tomorrow.”