Getting to know coach, yoga and mindfulness teacher, wellness columnist and author 

Rachel Grunwell

Award-winning journalist Rachel Grunwell is a respected wellness expert, magazine wellness columnist (for Good magazine & Indulge magazine) and magazine recipe creator, qualified coach and yoga teacher.

On top of that, the mum-of-three is the blogger behind the Inspired Health website which inspires people to move more and live well. She’s one of NZ’s top wellness influencers and has worked with lots of globally renowned brands. Rachel is passionate that being ‘busy’ should not be some crazy badge of honour.

She has used many of the tools in her new book, Balance, to positively uplift her own life – and she shares how you can achieve balance in your life too.

Rachel is a wellness speaker who shares science-backed wellbeing strategies that work from all pillars of health that help keep us ‘well’, healthy and happy including mindset, movement and nutrition mastery.

Available for:

  • Guest speaker
  • Corporate events
  • Emceeing
  • Social media partnerships
  • Media commentary
  • Brand ambassador

Here’s your chance to learn more about one of New Zealand’s leading wellbeing experts

Your first book, Balance: Food, Health + Happiness was released in 2019. What was the most rewarding part of that experience?
Sharing a book that can genuinely help readers to uplift their health and happiness levels. The book boasts science-backed wisdom from 30 global experts who are off-the-scale-amazing. I also love hearing from readers via social media, telling me which expert they love the most, or why they love the book. People who are keen to learn more can find out about the book here.

Where is your favourite place in New Zealand?
Rotorua – under the majestic redwood trees in Whakarewarewa Forest. Nature nurtures. It’s called biophilia and even ‘forest bathing’ in some areas of the world. I explain the science of this in my book and when I speak at events. Rotorua is where I was born and raised too – so I’m heart-connected to the place. I work there a bit too.  I co-lead the Mindful Moments retreats at Rotorua’s iconic Polynesian Spa (sharing yoga, mindfulness, meditation, and wellness wisdom that works) & I’m also a Rotorua Marathon ambassador, inspiring Kiwis to get off the couch and embrace a run or walk challenge in a distance that resonates with them.

How do you keep fit, healthy and balanced in your life?
I take time every day for self-care. I either run, lift weights or practice yoga. The ritual of movement helps me to feel grounded, centred and happy.   I feel lucky to have the knowledge and education about how to eat well and how to manage stress – these are my favourite wellness tools to share with others and my greatest gift to share in the world.

You’re an expert across so many different areas; health, fitness, nutrition, running, yoga, meditation – is there one area that you get the most enjoyment out of?
I care deeply about all of these aspects. They all are pieces of the “wellness puzzle” that help us to feel “well” and “balanced”. All of these different areas impact on our wellness. They’re all important. I understand the science about “why” all these things matter – and it’s fascinating. If you hear a nutritionist talk – then you are only going to hear how to adjust your food to live healthier. But when clients see me, or people hear me speak at events, I share wellness wisdom from all pieces of the puzzle that impact on our health and happiness levels. I love this stuff!

Who has had the greatest influence on your career and why?
Too many to name. I’ve been lucky enough to learn from some brilliant minds throughout my writing career which resulted in me becoming an award-winning journalist. It’s thanks to so many people nurturing me over two decades in this industry, that I achieved so much success. That, and a cast-iron determination! Call it bloody-mindedness if you prefer. I also feel very lucky to be in a unique position where, as a magazine wellness columnist, I get to interview wellness experts from throughout New Zealand and globally. I learn from every amazing mind I connect with. I also feel thankful that I had a high school teacher assure me early on that I was, in fact, “good enough” to go to university. Her kind words propelled me forwards. After all, I really was just an average, scraggly kid from Rotorua. She helped me to dream big early on.

You started out as a journalist and won multiple awards for your work – what made you want to change careers?
It was by accident. I was on maternity leave after having my third child when I was offered a weekly wellness column in the Herald on Sunday. I was confused about health, fitness and nutrition eight years ago when I started that column. I thought people were like Lady Gaga’s song ‘Born This Way’. I literally thought people who were fit were born that way. But I learnt over the years that anyone can be healthier and happier using science-backed tips. I’m the poster girl for that really. I was an unfit mum, stressed out and had zero idea about fitness eight years ago. Fast forward to today and I’ve conquered 24 marathons and now coach others how to achieve this bucket-list dream. I even help disabled athletes to train and conquer marathons.


What are your top tips for eating healthily on the go?
Plan ahead so you don’t find yourself starving and snacking on something that makes you feel crappy. Food fuels how you think and feel – not just how you look. It’s so important for us to perform at our best. The nutrition chapter in my book simplifies and cuts the jargon from how to eat well and healthier. There are 30 recipes in the book too for inspiration and I give so many tips on how to make nutrient-dense and delicious food and snacks. Life is too short to eat tasteless food. Some people are into drinking green smoothies that “taste like swamp water” simply to feel “virtuous”. Stuff that. Give me a green smoothie that is good for me AND tastes darn good.

What is your favourite thing to cook?
Scrambled eggs paired with regal Marlborough king salmon, and avo on toast. I drizzle olive oil on top. It takes two minutes to make and is delicious, plus it’s great for satiety (keeping me feeling full for longer – so I don’t want to snack).

What’s one thing most people don’t know about you?
I used to be the worst fidget in meditation, and completely uncoordinated at yoga but I’ve undergone hundreds and hundreds of hours of training from teachers throughout the world over years now… and now I teach these disciplines and love them. I love sharing this, because it shows that if I can learn… then anyone can. I like keeping things real!! I work with lots of corporates, and men and women. I teach these disciplines in a really relatable and easy way that’s enjoyable and fun. A lot of people thank me for that.

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