Tag: fitness

Stories I loved this week.

I’ve had a little hiatus from the blog. Things were getting on top of me and I needed to stop, have a breather and take stock. It’s important to do that once in a while, don’t you think? We’ve also been on holiday to Mallorca […]

How do you stay healthy when you drive everywhere?

We’ve just spent a lovely three days in Rye, a small, whimsical city on the South Coast of England. We drove down from London for some sorely needed time to recharge our batteries and enjoy some family time in the dog days of summer. It was nice […]

Stories I loved this week.

photo-1459433312032-29eb4bea7d3b

It’s finally spring and there seems to be a real lightness in the air here in London. Maybe it’s the crisp yet sunny days, maybe it’s the promise of warmth and lighter evenings. I know that I’ve been feeling in better spirits recently, though a combination of more sleep, better management of my food intake and more family time. Lots of kisses and cuddles from a bub can always lighten the spirit.

“Beyoncé doesn’t mention anything about her body, or weight, or pushing herself to her limits – instead she talks how running makes her feel, and what it has done for her mind.” I love this analysis of the video launching Beyonce’s new fitness range, Ivy Park. (The Pool)

How to choose the best produce. (Vox)

A fascinating piece on India’s menstrual product market and the taboos that still exists around menstruation in this country. (Broadly)

I put collagen into my morning smoothie and it’s nice to see more evidence of its benefits to the skin. Beauty really does start from the inside out. (Well + Good)

I’m trying out this chicken cacciatore recipe for a dinner party tomorrow night. (New York Times)

How not to lose yourself in motherhood. Lots of good advice here. It takes time and for me, it’s important to remember that mother is just one part of my identity. (Mother Mag)

We’re more honest with our phones than with our doctors. (New York Times)

What you don’t know about depression. (Kelly Brogan MD)

Photo by Milada Vigerova

Do you workout at home?

I’ve had a few gym memberships in my time. Virgin Active, Fitness First, local council funded gyms and the list goes on. In my pre-baby days, when I had acres of free time after work and on the weekends, I’d find it very difficult to […]

I Tried It: Keeping A Food Diary

  My second assignment for my second year of nutrition requires me to keep a food diary. Sounds too easy, right? Copy down breakfast, lunch, dinner and Bob’s your uncle. For this exercise, we need to record every single element of each meal and put […]

I Tried It: Barry’s Bootcamp

Barry’s Bootcamp has been on my fitness to-do list for ages, but it’s taken me a while to ‘gee’ myself up to try it out.  Any workout that combines treadmill sprints (not my favourite, at the best of times) and strength training is always going to be tough. Add in ‘bootcamp’ and well, you can understand why I was nervous when I rocked up to the London Central branch yesterday morning.

barry's bootcamp london central

Reader, it was f*cking hard. Two circuits of 15 minutes on the treadmill and 15 minutes of strength training nearly wiped me out for the day. The beginners treadmill speed is 6 mph (9.66 km/h!), which is much faster than I run, EVER. You then go up by 1 or 2 points (miles) throughout the sprints. If the instructor is being nice, you might change it up and let you go up by 0.5 mile intervals. The fastest I ran was 8.5 mph (13.8 km/h!!!!!!) and I thought my legs were going to come up from under me.

Real talk: since giving birth, my pelvic floor isn’t what it used to be, so I had to contend with that, as well as holding back the urge to vomit, during and after the sprints. Note to self: wear black running trousers next time!

The music was absolutely amazing, with lots of uptempo house and hip hop to keep energy levels up. Our instructor for the session was Faisal and he was super motivational, continuously trying to push all of us to our limits and reminding us that it’s supposed be hard. And of course the class is going to be hard – that’s what you pay £20 for. And that’s how you get results.

barry's bootcamp protein shake menu

I ordered a much needed recovery shake to pick up after my workout, custom made with almond butter, banana, cinnamon and almond milk. My only complaint would be that all of their ‘off the rack’ shakes have either chocolate or vanilla whey protein in them and if you don’t do dairy, then you need to go for a custom option to get your protein. I opted for almond butter instead, but I might go for vegan protein next time.

barrys london smoothie

Have you tried Barry’s yet? What do you think?

Stories I loved this week.

Photo by Austin Schmid Thursday was my last day at my freelance job and I feel like the person in the picture. Jumping for joy and ready to take on new challenges. I’m looking forward to taking the time to find a new contract, getting a […]

What I’m Reading: Better Than Before

Photo by Charles Yeager I love self-improvement books. There, I admit it. I’m a relentless self-improver and love finding out about new (to me) life hacks, cooking & nutrition tips and general health & wellbeing advice. I had read two of Gretchen Rubin’s books on trying […]

Jumping on the bandwagon and loving it.

running

Photo by Matthew Wiebe

I was never really much of an an athlete when I was younger and it was only after I graduated university that I started to embrace fitness. I started with running, then moved on weights, amongst many, many other activities. I’ve never really been one for team sports though – I’m a bit too competitive and tend to embarrass myself with my overenthusiastic cheering and geeing up of my team.

I still workout regularly, but I need variety in my workouts. Doing the same type of workout for too long bores me and I find it difficult to motivate myself to carry on.

I’ve been following Kayla Itsines on Instagram ever since reading a profile of her in the Sunday Times Style magazine. I’ve been fascinated by not only the transformations she posts, but also the devotion of the ladies that use her guides. The hashtags are numerous (#deathbykayla, #thekaylamovement, #bbgsisters, #bbgover30, etc) and when you scroll through them, it’s amazing to read the effect her workouts have had on her followers and how supportive everyone is of each other. It’s really motivating.

After hitting a plateau with my kettlebell practice, I finally took the plunge and downloaded Kayla’s Bikini Body Guide 1.0 when I got back from Jakarta in August. Cheesy name; amazing & gruelling workout. When I started the guide, I fancied myself in fairly good shape, as I had been doing lots of walking, carrying my 29 pound toddler for extended periods (#momarms), running and doing the Blogilates workouts when I had the chance.

Honestly, Kayla’s workouts are in another league. She splits her BBG 1.0 guide into 4 weeks of pre-training and 12 weeks of training. After doing the pre-training Week 1 Legs and Cardio workout, I was walking like a cowboy at work the next day!

I’ve now progressed to week 6 and I love it. The workouts are getting progressively harder, but I’m getting progressively stronger. J’s naptime is my time to workout and I’ve become quite jealous with this time. Call me obsessed, but it’s one of the few times I have to myself and it’s nice to know that I’m doing something positive with this time. And there’s enough variation in the workouts that I’m not getting bored.

My only bug bear with the guides is the number of adaptations and equipment that are required if you need to do them at home. I cancelled my gym membership in January as I was finding that it was easier for me to grab a quick 30 minutes to exercise during little J’s nap, rather than trying to find time to schlep to the gym a few times a week. I already have a medicine ball and kettlebells, but I’ve had to get creative and use my stairs for the knee-ups and weighted steps and a little bench for the decline push-ups. Here’s a nice guide to how you can use furniture, stairs and other items at home to work out with.

Have you done Kayla’s guides? What has your experience been?

Things I Love: Psycle

I took my first Psycle class back in January and I was hooked. I had been watching Psycle ever since it opened last year, but weirdly kept making excuses about why I couldn’t go. Too tired. Still breastfeeding. Feeling insecure about my body. Frankly, feeling […]