Finding Balance: An Inspiring Journey with Claire Agius Ordway
Words by Lyndsay Grima
We spoke with Claire Agius Ordway, local TV producer, presenter & fitness enthusiast about all things fitness, how she maintains balance, and the importance of self-development.
Claire Agius Ordway is a Maltese personality that most of us know and love. She has been working in the entertainment industry for over 20 years as a presenter and producer of various local television programmes such as Ilsien in-Nisa, Dak li Jghodd, and others. Claire is also a mother of three and she has been married to her husband, Robert, for 24 years.
Anyone who follows Claire can surely sense her hunger and passion to create projects and lead a positive and healthy lifestyle. In fact, she describes her career as being currently focused on three pillars; parenting, fitness, and travel.
These three pillars mean that Claire leads an incredibly busy lifestyle. However, she is also a true example of balance. We were curious to see how she manages to achieve balance in her life so we went ahead and asked her a few questions!
How did you start your fitness journey? Was fitness always your passion?
Sometimes, people are surprised when I say that fitness was not always my passion...but it wasn’t! However, I always wished that it was! In fact, I remember spending so much money on gym memberships. It always started with a lot of commitment which slowly faded away because I was never consistent. My driving motivator was when I had my third baby at 33 years old. I had gained a lot of weight and I was not feeling comfortable with the way I looked. My eldest son wanted to attend kickboxing classes and my husband encouraged me to join in the classes instead of simply driving my son back and forth to these classes!
That’s where it all started. I wanted to get stronger and started running to get fitter until the age of 40. With three young kids, running was the only exercise that I could commit to. I used to wake up early and go for my run before they woke up. I got the running bug when I started participating in races and marathons.
At the age of 40, I decided that I wanted to change my physique by implementing weight training into my routine. I started working out with a personal trainer and that is when the real mental transformation started. The stronger I became physically, I noticed that it was also being reciprocated mentally.
Now I train religiously and I also take part in competitions like Hyrox. I have made fitness my full-time job and I, wholeheartedly, believe in the power of fitness since it can get us through a lot of challenges that we might face in life.
How do you stay motivated to train and lead a healthy lifestyle?
It’s a cycle. If you commit to it in the beginning, the feel-good factor will become addictive. That’s not to say that I am always consistent and that I do not slip up every once in a while. However, I love the way training and eating clean makes me feel as opposed to eating junk food and not moving. Like most people, I also enjoy indulging every once in a while, of course, but after I do not feel as good - so I go back to what makes me feel better.
I believe that with gradual changes, you can really change your lifestyle, your eating habits, sleeping patterns, discipline, resilience and commitment. Setting a target and adhering to the commitment fills me with confidence that I can trust myself because I keep my word. These little changes did not happen overnight but they are now ingrained in my system as habits.
You lead a busy lifestyle. How do you maintain balance?
I do have a busy life but nothing out of the ordinary. My life is just like every other parent’s life. However, I do like to structure my time. I work very hard from Monday to Friday but then in the weekend, I like to get away from it all to recharge.
I am also very disciplined in my sleeping routine - I sleep very early as I wake up super early. In the early hours of the morning, when everyone is sleeping, I manage to do a lot of things - I get a lot of work done, do house chores, train and so many other things!
What’s your secret to living a happy life?
I try to read and learn all the time about this because who does not want to be happy?! We cannot control what happens; bad things happen and they are inevitable. However, I try to keep in mind and believe that good things come out of bad things too sometimes.
I do try to learn coping skills and tips to help me deal with my worries. I used to be a massive overthinker (I still am sometimes!) but I am learning to balance it out. Something I learned recently is that we tend to make life harder than it actually is. 70% of the time, we worry about things which never happened, which we make up in our head and which might never happen.
I am trying, as much as I can, to live in the present moment. In fact, I unfollowed pages or people that make me feel anxious and I learned how to surround myself with people who are a positive influence on me. Training and cold baths are another two tools that I use because I believe that they give me more resilience which, in turn, makes me feel more in control over my thoughts.
I’m not perfect - there are a lot of things that I would like to improve on and I am always striving to be better. However, something that I pride myself on is that I am happy with very little things. A short walk, a good book, a simple conversation, listening to good music and other small things like these make me very happy. I will always try my best to keep doing these things to balance my overthinking brain!
Thank you, Claire, for being such an inspiration to us all! Follow her journey on Instagram.