Clifford Chance trainee blogging as The Lean Lawyer goes viral with anti-diet Instagram post

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By Katie King on

Future corporate lawyer has 61,000 followers

A fitness blogger training to be a solicitor at Clifford Chance has given dieting the middle finger, telling her 61,000 Instagram followers she eats pizza and chocolate and drinks wine.

In a candid post liked by thousands, Alex Buckley shared two photos of herself in a side-by-side comparison (embedded below). On the left shows a picture of the blogger, who Instagrams under @TheLeanLawyer, when she was “obsessed” with calorie-counting and “unsustainable diets”.

“I’d lose weight but I’d never be happy with how I looked because I always felt that I could do more,” she revealed. “When my three week crash diet started to get too much, I’d give up and start another one 6 months later.”

A post shared by Alex (@theleanlawyer) on

Now, the University of Exeter law graduate rarely has salads, regularly eats pasta, goes out for meals and some weeks doesn’t make it to the gym — and she still looks great. Her message:

“Stop listening to the stupid magazines that tell you to try the latest bullshit diet that involves starving yourself. Believe me when I tell you that being healthy and fit will not come from any diet. It comes from a mentality change and from the knowledge that being healthy doesn’t involve cutting out any food group. Eat a balanced diet, do workouts you enjoy and have chocolate or wine if you bloody fancy it.”

The uplifting post is one of hundreds posted by Buckley, who also blogs at The Lean Lawyer. Here, Buckley reveals that her love of all things health, food and fitness peaked after returning from a year of overindulgence in Singapore, which she undertook at part of her Russell Group law school studies.

A post shared by Alex (@theleanlawyer) on

Aside from gaining a 2:1 degree and building an impressive social media presence, Buckley has also spent the past few years working as a law mentor at her university and taking part in vacation schemes at Ashurst, Clifford Chance and Olswang (since merged).

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A scan of Buckley’s LinkedIn shows she has plenty of corporate law experience, but, like most I’m sure, she admits she has had crises of confidence in the past. Buckley — who has completed the accelerated Legal Practice Course (LPC) and whose boyfriend is also training at the magic circle firm — says that in the midst of final-year exams, she and a friend floated the idea of doing a personal training course instead. She adds:

“The university gym was our only escape from trusts law and so it seemed an attractive alternative at the time.”

Now, Buckley’s law-induced grumbles have dissipated and she is still hoping to become a lawyer. She says: “I am incredibly happy to be going into my dream career.”

Law and fitness don’t seem to have all that much in common, but there are plenty of people who managed to combine both.

Saffron Sheriff, who studied law at Lancaster University and at BPP Law School, continues to impress her 53,000 Instagram followers with her bodybuilding posts. And then there are twin sisters and law students Stephanie Baessler and Julia Baessler, who between them have a social media following of 400,000.

A love of fitness isn’t just the preserve of students. Eloise Le Santo notably quit her job as a barrister at Matrix Chambers to become a personal trainer, telling Legal Cheek: “There is just no way I’d go back. I feel I’ve just found the light at the end of the tunnel, and there’s no way I’d want to step into the darkness again.”

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