Cassey Ho is one of YouTube’s top fitness instructors, with a worldwide following of over 2 million subscribers. Her most popular workout videos have over 5 million views and her POP Pilates program can be found at 24 Hour Fitness locations throughout LA.

Her passion for health and fitness began while she was 16 years old. Four years later, while attending Whittier College, she taught Pilates at a local studio and became a certified trainer. She has been teaching Pilates professionally for over nine years and even invented her own workout, POP Pilates.

Cassey grew up in LA’s San Fernando Valley and her workout videos and Blogilates website are inspired by the healthy and active LA lifestyle. In between stops on her national tour—following the release of her new book, Hot Body Year Round—Cassey chatted with us about her favorite healthy LA restaurants and tips for incorporating fitness into an ultra-busy LA schedule.

What sparked your interest in Pilates?

When I was 16, I was working toward competing in a beauty pageant. I convinced my parents to buy me the Mari Winsor Pilates videos so I could get in shape. I’ve been hooked on Pilates ever since.

How is your POP Pilates workout different from other Pilates videos?

I started POP Pilates around 2009 and my goal was to innovate the program more and bring up the intensity. POP Pilates incorporates rigorous exercise moves set to the beats of Top 40 hits on the radio.

Tell me more about your new book, Hot Body Year Round.

It is about how to stay fit and healthy throughout the year. I included over 120 exercises plus healthy recipes. My favorite exercise is the “Earthquake,” which will shake your core and work your abs. I also love the Coconut Powerball recipe because it’s a quick and easy snack that will energize you before your workouts.

What is your favorite local healthy restaurant and what dishes do you like to order?

Café Gratitude’s “Terrific” Pad Thai Kelp Noodles and “Ecstatic” miso-glazed Brussels sprouts.

Where’s your favorite place to grab a drink in LA and what’s your go-to beverage?

I’m not much of an alcohol drinker, so I love going to Urth Caffe and getting their green tea latte.

Do you have any tips for incorporating fitness and healthy eating into the fast-paced LA lifestyle?

Getting healthy or losing weight is not going to be a quick fix. You have to do workouts that you love and find where your passion lies. Drink more water—I can’t say that enough. Substitute veggies in place of carbs. Treat workouts like an appointment and pencil them into your schedule. That way, you always make time for them.

Many of your videos are filmed outside. Do you have any favorite beaches or parks for outdoor exercise?

Point Dume in Malibu.

Where is a cool place to take an out-of-towner?

I take everyone to the Griffith Observatory and then to a Yolo (cheat) meal at Milk. I love their blue velvet cake and macaroon.

Any other favorite spots for cheat meals?

The bread pudding at Sawtelle’s B Sweet Dessert Bar is incredible. I heard rumors of a funnel cake ice cream sandwich that I have to try. (Editor’s Note: It’s at Quenelle’s Ice Que in Alhambra, and it’s awesome!)