Miss Universe Australia’s holistic approach to health
Her reign as Miss Universe Australia may be coming to end, but Monika Radulovic’s journey as a wellness ambassador for young Australians is just getting started. Graduating from a psychology degree with honours in 2014, Monika hopes to utilise her skills to help children and adolescents grow into healthy, confident adults. We chatted with the natural beauty about fitness, food and life after Miss Universe.
What is your health philosophy?
My health philosophy is ‘nourish your body and soul.’ It’s a very holistic approach to health – along with the physical aspects of being healthy like eating well and exercise, I believe other facets like emotional, mental and spiritual health are also incredibly important. When I nurture all of these aspects (e.g. eating wholesome foods, moving my body daily, meditating and having meaningful connections with loved ones), I feel truly healthy.
My philosophy has definitely changed in recent years. When I was younger, I was solely focused on my physical appearance as opposed to actually achieving health. For example, I succumbed to the “low-fat” fad, cutting out all forms of fat from my diet thinking I was doing my body a favour, (which of course I wasn’t). After much research into nutrition, I now know the importance of nourishing my body with the right foods – including generous amounts of good fats.
What is your daily fitness routine?
I train four times a week at BodyTech studio in Brighton Le Sands, doing Electric Muscle Stimulation (EMS) training. It’s an amazing way of working out using an EMS machine that sends electrical impulses that constrict your muscles while working out. It’s absolutely incredible; a 20 minute HIIT session using this machine does for the body what hours in gym can achieve. BodyTech has really helped to tone and shape my body. I’m completely addicted! On my days off, I keep active by going for runs, brisk walks or doing reformer Pilates.
What’s your favourite exercise?
It’s a toss-up between squats or the plank. I love the classics!
What do you eat on a general day?
Two eggs scrambled with coconut oil, avocado, spinach and smoked salmon, and a bullet-proof coffee (black coffee blended with a tablespoon of coconut oil).
Really varies depending on where I am, but if I’m at home I’ll make a big salad with grilled chicken, feta cheese, avocado, cherry tomatoes and lots of greens dressed with olive oil.
Again it totally varies. If I’m out for dinner I tend to go for seafood dishes (I could happily live off seafood) but my go-to dinner at home is grilled salmon with lots of veggies sautéed in coconut oil and tamari sauce.
What’s your favourite healthy recipe?
I actually LOVE baking, especially re-creating typically naughty treats into healthy ones – I have so many favourite healthy recipes up my sleeve. I make a mean paleo banana bread, gut-healing cauliflower chocolate pudding, chocolate zucchini brownies and delicious two-ingredient cookies (and all my recipes are gluten, grain and sugar free).
What’s your food splurge?
Cobs Popcorn (slightly salty, slightly sweet and so good!)
Is there a motto that you live by?
“Spread love wherever you go. Let no-one ever come to you without leaving happier” – Mother Teresa.
What did you enjoy most about being Miss Universe Australia and what were the most challenging aspects?
The biggest highlight in my incredible year being Miss Universe Australia would have to be competing in the Miss Universe international pageant. To be representing my country in such an iconic event (it’s the second most watched TV program after the World Cup) was such an incredible honour and privilege.
Funnily enough, this was also the most challenging aspect; being apart from my family and friends for three weeks overseas in Vegas while competing in the biggest, most watched pageant – no pressure.
I made a conscious decision before I left, that I was going make the most of every single day there, and be grateful for all the opportunities I was given. I reminded myself that my only job was to be myself and to have fun – if I wasn’t having fun I wasn’t doing my job properly. It was a great way of pulling myself out of any little negative or stressful mood and stay positive.
What upcoming projects are you working on?
It’s such an exciting transitional period for me right now. My Miss Universe Australia reign is coming to an end (on August 31st), and I’ve signed with an amazing new management agency (SF Celebrity Management). Together with my management team, we are looking at a number of exciting new opportunities. Currently I’m working with The Star as an ambassador for their winter campaign, #nevergrey, as well as Gregory Jewellers and White Glo just to name a few other incredible brands I’m associated with. I’m so excited to start a new chapter after my whirlwind year as Miss Universe Australia.
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