JUST BREATHE: As recognizable as Heather Thomson is thanks to her role on “The Real Housewives of New York City,” her 9-to-5 self revolves around Yummie, the shapewear company she launched in 2004. Starting Monday, consumers will be able to buy activewear via the firm’s Web site and through Physique 57, where the Bravo star takes barre classes when not working out with her trainer, Will Torres. A different kind of flexibility is needed when dealing with the reality show’s fans off-hours, as was the case during a midweek supermarket run in The Berkshires with her seven-year-old daughter Ella. “I just caught the woman off guard and she was very emotional and very excited. It was awkward but very sweet,” Thomson said in an interview Monday.
Thomson was hard-pressed to quantify how the show’s viewers (more than 1.3 million tuned in for its reunion show earlier this month) are helping to bolster Yummie sales other than that her Web site’s traffic jumps when the show runs. “There’s no real way to calculate its reach. It’s positive for the brand. It’s my life,” she said. “I experience my life as a human being, but my brand is me and I am my brand. It’s the real deal.”
Thomson said activewear was a natural step given the success of her leggings. As an added incentive to try the new activewear, shoppers can try to win a four-day trip to Miraval Spa, the resort in Tucson, Ariz., in which Steve Case has a majority stake. Thomson will fly out to the luxury hideaway to promote her activewear launch. She sounds as though she already has a balanced view of her working life. “You’re always going to have lovers or haters no matter what you do in life. But if you keep your feet on the ground and go with your heart, everything will be fine,” Thomson said.