Thursday, August 21, 2014

Actress-Fitness Expert Carly Sunae Interview (C) 2014 Danny Shamon A Dan's Movie Report Exclusive!

Above Photo: (C) 2014 Natural Woman Photography

Greetings my esteemed readers, as the Action On Film Festival begins, what better way to kick it off with a 2,000 word interview, with Actress/fitness expert Carly Sunae. Carly is nominated for the 'Female Action Performer of The Year' Award for her portrayal of Federal Agent Hayley Yuen in the Kung Fu Femmes short Film 'Dr. Nguyen'. Carly has a wealth of practical knowledge as a personal trainer, and is well respected by athletes and actors she trains and exercises with. Sit back, relax, pull up a weight bench, a sports drink, and get ready for a text based workout with Carly. 

What types of outside activities did you do when you were younger?

I was a very active kid, I am from the Midwest. So first of all, sports was everything in the Midwest, so I started early and played little league baseball, basketball, and did gymnastics. But then for fun I played on the money bars in my skirt with short underneath of course, jump rope etc... I was a tomboy so I was really physically active as a child. I just had this conversation, as a kid we used to jump rope for recess and that used to be fun, but now it is this crazy exercise regimen that we have to do, which is hard now. When I was younger physical activity was everything. Now it is more video games, and internet. I feel fortunate that I had this physical activity when I was younger.

Above Photo: (C) 2014 Natural Woman Photography

In college I saw you were a power-lifter, go through a typical training regimen for that stage of your life.

I would come to the weight training room, for at least 3 hours of hard core lifting. For example, I would do all three major lifts in one day up to 70-75% of my estimated max strength. 7 sets of Back Squats up, 7 sets of Bench Press, then 5 sets of Dead=lifts in additional to supplementary isolated exercises and dynamic warm=ups. It was pretty strenuous. Just thinking about it I don’t know how I did that and I impress myself to think I did all that. Man, how I wish I could do 300 lbs in dead lift again or 270 in squats. I can’t do nearly as much, but for my 5’2” frame, I still am pretty strong.

Above Photo: (C) 2014 Natural Woman Photography

You were working out hard, chat about your diet back then, what foods you ate.

Back then they were not as particular about what you ate, as long as you had enough protein, enough calories and ate a well-balanced diet. You just had to have enough energy for the practices and the competition. However, there were competition weight classes you fit in.

How did you get involved with the Live Strong and Ehow video series?

Actually I did a video for myself and I put it online, it was a kickboxing video, ( link: .) A lot of people liked it, they found me online and actually emailed me, and asked me if I would be interested in doing the videos. That was a great opportunity, a way to get exposure and show my expertise as a personal trainer, become familiar with fitness production, and being in front of the camera as a fitness professional. I would like to do more videos and also get into hosting fitness and health videos and shows.

Above Photo: (C) 2014 Natural Woman Photography

Have you ever considered doing a full exercise DVD?

I would love to, the short Ehow Series made me more comfortable with production and being in in front of the camera in educating and showing examples of how to do each exercise, it was so much fun, I like production. That would be a dream of mine to have a DVD series of workouts.

Chat about your current training schedule, what is a typical day?

I am getting myself into training for a competition. But it’s going to be hard because I believe in balance. I believe in eating healthy and balanced. And I love food and by eating realistically and functionally we can enjoy life more. Part of being healthy is enjoying life. So training for a figure competition is going to ask me to go against my groove of balance and challenge me to do something extremely new and different than training like a performance athlete, which is what I am use to.

Above Photo: (C) 2014 Natural Woman Photography

Chat about the competition/

It is a figure competition, it is based on appreciating the body’s muscular anatomy and what you can do with your body. More of an aesthetic sport which is different from what I am used to. The human body is amazing and what it can do, but this represents a different form of training for me, a whole different discipline. Strictly visual and figure poses. Fitness competition is my ultimate goal, I am doing this to become familiar with this type of training and being on stage. Training for that is even harder because you have to look lean and still be able to do a high performance strength and aerobic routine.

Do you have a favorite stretching routine in the morning?

I like to do more of a power yoga type of stretching. I teach it as well, it requires your body strength, to hold postures and positions, the regimen requires strength as well as flexibility, and it creates heat in your body faster, this way you can get a more optimize total body and varied workout.

Have you ever done Tai-Chi, that seems a great way to open up the body in the morning?

I have never done Tai-Chi, but I would love to try it. It requires a more meditative stability and balance. I would like to meditate more. As I have gotten older, I appreciate more balanced and meditative approaches to exercise.

What are the common misconceptions about personal trainers, and do you feel that many are not properly trained, including all aspects of lifestyle and diet?

I actually teach at a school to certify trainers, I see various types of people and I try to educate them on how they can be the best trainer. Every trainer is going to be different, they are going to have their different specialty. Some people become trainers and think it is just another business they can get in to make quick money. The motive is not right, if the motive in a trainer is for money and not to truly help someone be healthy or be a better in fitness. Because of those motives, it shows through in their training. Also they are not always properly educated, so they are going to go off the basic knowledge that everybody else knows or trends which often can be wrong or not suitable for everyone.

Chat about the importance of proper education for a personal trainer.

Someone who is properly educated will come from an analytical scientific knowledge base and are able to implement a specific and proper training regimen for their particular client. Their training will come from a strong stable foundation of knowledge not easily influenced by trends or improper technique or assessments. There are three basic body types, ectomorph, endomorph, and mesomorph there is also a mixture of those three as well, and different training goals that might be easier or harder for certain individuals and you have to consider the client's lifestyle. Training is also about relationships, finding someone who is going to coach you, to develop a healthy lifestyle that is going to work for you, and the goals you have.

Above Photo: Carly in 'Dr. Nguyen' (C) 2014 Kung Fu Femmes

Recently you did a short film for Kung Fu Femmes called 'Dr. Nguyen' delving in to the action world, do you want to pursue being an actress? Do you like the fitness aspect of the martial arts training?

Absolutely, I like the fitness aspect of the martial arts training and like how I can use that in the entertainment world. I would like to pursue both if that is possible. Maybe I should create a martial arts inspired workout. I like working on the Kung Fu Femmes project with Tony Laudati. Any projects that can empower women. Strength is beauty. I liked it was a physical role, I was able to demonstrate some of the skills I learned. I have taken tae kwon do with Panther Energy in Hollywood and took some classes with Terry Taneie, a great martial arts teacher and choreographer. He has a great free class out in the park, and we learn different stunts and various forms of martial arts. That was fun for me, to be able to showcase that on a film is even more amazing.

To check out'Dr. Nguyen' point your browsers to
For more info check out the official site @

Have you worked on any projects since the Kung Fu Femmes?

Tony and I are talking about doing some more work, not necessarily action and martial arts but acting. I studied acting as well in College and some in LA. I want to do more dramatic work.

Above Photo: (C) 2013 Tony Laudati for Kung Fu Femmes @

You have a good personality and facial expressions, I think you may be a natural at that.

Thanks. I have been told I have an expressive face, haha

Chatting film, do you enjoy watching action films?

I love watching action films but I love all kinds of films, especially real life drama and suspense, but lately I am increasing more interested in action. The more I get involved in the martial arts, getting back into my Tae Kwon do, the more I want to see them. I have been watching more martial arts videos but have a lot of catching up to do.

Are there any movies that stand out?

Well Recently I watched a foreign film called Journey To The West, it was action, but it was comedy, very metaphorically artistically done. The film is about the martial artists who fight demons. It had a very spiritual, Buddhism way of killing the demons, surprisingly funny and entertaining, and also had awesome martial arts as well.

Shifting the focus to acting, what are some of the actors or actresses that you enjoy watching or would like to work with?

My favorite watching is Kate Winslett, she is a great actress, caliber of roles that she has portrayed, she is amazing, obviously Meryl Streep is the ultimate, but I really am fond of Kate Winslet. For action, I would love to be in a movie with Tom Cruise, why not, hahaha!

Chat about charitable organizations you are involved in.

I am no longer active with the program but I started a program called Step it Up, that helps young girls get familiar with the industry through dancing, production, health, and fitness. The program allows young teenager or young adults to be familiar with the entertainment industry while finding confidence in their selves and it educates and exposes them to what is available in LA and how can they can fit in.

Yeah I enjoy Cruise also, chat about the future, in ten years is Carly an action actress, the female Billy Blanks DVD queen or a bit of both?

A bit of both, I would like to do both, I would like to get my face out there and be a positive figure in both fitness and action, why not!

Finally, give a bit of advice to a person who wants to take that first step to leading a healthy lifestyle.

The first step is to find your support system, to make you be accountable, and help you find your healthy regimen and stick with it. Your support system is ultimately who you are with and they can bring you down or bring you up. Set your goals, say what you want to do, and find somebody who can do it with you, or wants to be there to support and encourage you. From that point, you do not feel alone in the journey, from that foundation you can realistically set goals. Realistically is a key word, it is important to not discourage yourself. Set goals on something you can enjoy. And another Number one key is consistency, I see people go gung ho, and it only lasts for a week, because they burn themselves out. Start out with small steps and build a consistency with the regimen, and eventually you can increase intensity or increase the time.

Carly that is fantastic advice, thank you for sharing your time with my valued readers. Watch for more exclusively from Carly in the coming months on your home for exclusives on the web, Dan's Movie Report!

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