Inspired By Issue No. 12 - Liz Hilliard & Clary Hilliard Gray of Hilliard Studio Method

We were lucky enough to have a moment with this powerhouse mother-daughter duo, owners of Hilliard Studio Method in Charlotte, NC. Find out how they started and the recipe for their signature smoothie!


AM: What inspired you to start Hilliard Studio Method?

LH: In 2007, my daughter and now business partner Clary came to me, head over heels in love, and said she was getting married in one year and needed my help getting her body into shape for her wedding. Her workout at the time was daily running and hot yoga, but this simply wasn’t cutting it. So of course I did what any good mother would do; I accepted the challenge and dove in head first to learn the latest and most cutting edge techniques in shaping the body. My expertise as a STOTT Pilates certified personal trainer came in handy as I discovered through research along with using myself as a guinea pig that heavy resistance training was key to sculpting the physique. I combined this along with core-centric Pilates, a few yoga stretches and some components from barre to begin the work of creating the most efficient total body workout I’ve ever done.

The results were undeniable. So much so that, in fact, while Clary went from a size 10 to a size 4 (at 6’1” tall mind you), I dropped a size and sculpted my body in a way I never thought was possible (And I was in the middle of menopause, for goodness sake!)

From here we knew we had something special and Hilliard Studio Method was born. Now, we offer over 45 classes to more than 1,000 clients a week in our Charlotte, NC studio as well as over 15 workout videos available for download with plans for live streaming in the works. 

AM: We know you have a book on the way, tell us more about it! 

LH: Yes, I am in the process of writing a book along with Clary outlining the HSM Lifestyle and furthermore empowering women. “BE POWERFUL” is my mantra and is written across the wall of our studio. Be powerful in everything you do, not just in your umpteenth pushup but in every aspect of your life. When we push ourselves to our edge physically we get a glimpse into how strong we are mentally and emotionally. And that’s why I get up every morning with a smile on my face and fire in my belly. I love helping and seeing people discover the power they have within, and not just changing their body but changing their mind as well!

AM: Tell us more about your This Isn't Just a Workout - It's a Lifestyle Philosophy?

CHG: Health and beauty come from a lifestyle encompassing good nutrition, mental and physical strength, and a joy for life that sometimes includes a glass or two of wine! You can workout morning, noon and night, but at HSM we bring you the most efficient workout there is along with tips to help make you feel and look your best, no matter your age or stage of life. Stay updated with our newsletter

AM: You have a Hilliard Studio Method Signature Smoothie? That's awesome! Can you share the recipe with us? 

CHG: Of course! We love our smoothie and drink it every morning to get our day started off right! We carry many of the ingredients in our studio, and you can order them easily from our website by clicking on the links below:

¼ avocado

*Nutrient-dense super food loaded with heart-healthy monosaturated fatty acids, fiber and potassium plus nearly 20 vitamins and minerals.

Juice of ½ lime

1 cup organic mixed berries

2 scoops Tera’s Vanilla Whey protein powder

*Naturally complete protein containing all of the essential amino acids needed to rebuild muscle tissue depleted through exercise. With protein, muscles recover faster and lean muscle is building to speed up metabolism.

1 scoop Catie’s Organic Greens powder

*Provides seven servings of enzymes, probiotics and nutrients in one powerful scoop.

1 scoop Catie’s Organic Vitamin C Plus powder

*Aids the absorption of greens, helps fight viruses, strengthens arteries, organs and tissue as well as promotes youthful skin through the promotion of collagen cells.

1 tbsp chia seeds

*Packed with omega-3s, protein, antioxidants and fiber, which aids digestion and keep the body feeling fuller longer.

1 cup ice

2/3 cup coconut water

*Full of electrolytes and potassium and is a great source of hydration and fuel for the body.

Blend ingredients, pop in a straw and enjoy an energy-filled morning!

AM: Tell us more about your Powerful Pregnancy workout video.

LH: We filmed HSM Powerful Pregnancy when Clary was seven months pregnant with her second child, Cameron. The core-strengthening, low-impact nature of our workout is ideal for pregnant women and can help alleviate back pain, elevate mood, promote a healthy delivery and of course help you shed the baby weight quickly. We recently featured a client who was back in her pre-preggo jeans just three weeks post partum! This workout video is available as a DVD, streaming and download.

AM: What's in the future for Hilliard Studio Method? An NYC location??

We’d love to come to NYC, please stay tuned!

Follow Hilliard Studio Method on Instagram or Facebook, and be sure to stop by the next time you're in Charlotte! 

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