Page 1

Kayla Itsines






...4, 7, 10


HAPPY MEALS That supersize your mood


AG WALL ORFEAT CHINA HIKING T RIP! Excluding NZ Conditions residents . ap see page 13 ply, 0




CONTENTS Summer Cover

24 Kayla Itsines: The exclusive book extract 28 Is your bed messing with your health? 34 Hello, summer success! Tone up, boost energy, stay wellthy 72 Core-strength secrets of the pros 78 Get fit in ‌4, 7, 10 minutes 104 Happy meals that supersize your mood 122 No-hassle suncare 130 Win! A Great Wall of China hiking trip!



LiveFIT 18

22 24 28 30


36 38 40

Quick hits The latest health news and trends at your fingertips Fit diary Fun fitness events to add to your calendar Power player Star PT Kayla Itsines gives us a peek at her new book Sleep on it Is your old mattress sabotaging your health? Confidence heroes Meet the inspiring runners-up from our WF ‘Search for a Cover Star’ comp! Countdown to healthy The quick things you can do right now for a wellness boost Your emotional first-aid kit Tools to heal your mental health Lighten up Let the sun shine in! Crystal power These crystal facials will rock your beauty regimen


44 Blank space How to journal your way through life’s tricky spots 46 Winners and losers In it to win it? Reign in your competitive streak 48 Month of mantras Mini hits of inspo


52 Super summer workout Wanna get toned from top to toe? You need these fresh exercise combos, pronto 56 Primed to lift Get your body ready for a big strength sesh 60 To the rescue Three surf lifesavers talk life on the sandy frontline 64 Be a bike ninja! Never get stranded roadside with a flattie again 66 How to love your summer runs There’s no better time to get outside and pound the pavements 68 Smart (phone) workout No gym required for this at-home sweat sesh 72 Core-strength secrets of the pros Our experts get you a strong centre 74 Meet your (workout) match New training styles to complement your existing fitness faves 76 Gear up The latest fit buys 78 Summer of fast fitness: Part 2 Speedy workouts that you can squeeze in between beach stints


88 Slow summer Newsflash: Your slowcooker isn’t just for the chilly months 94 Everyday goodness Simple, healthy moves you can serve up on the daily 96 Black magic Next time the waiter asks you if you want cracked pepper, say yes – and here’s why 98 Hot switch Update your plate for summer with these food swaps 100 Trend to try: Edible flowers Not just handy for Insta, these blooms have nutrition benefits aplenty 102 Mood food How what you eat impacts your hormones 104 Balanced serve Keep ’em on even keel with these delish dishes



110 Sea daze Neutral cozzies for the win! 118 Get us to the Greek Channel those island vibes in cool, blue activewear 120 Maximum potential Make your summer beauty kit go the distance 122 (Don’t) let it burn Protect your skin from the harsh Aussie sun 126 Beauty loot New pretty prods 128 Call of beauty WF’s Jaymie Hooper asks… What happens if you don’t wash your hair for a week?


132 Wild wild East Add to bucket list: Trekking the Great Wall of China 136 On the move Inspo for your next trip 138 No passport required Save your pennies and opt for a staycation


142 Reach for the moon These moon salutations will help you unwind

EveryFIT 10 14

Ed’s letter Trending now on... Get clicking 86 Subscribe Get WF and save! 140 Next month Mark it in your diary 146 The last word Save it to your smartphone or desktop

PRIVACY NOTICE This issue of Women’s Fitness is published by Citrus Media. Citrus Media may use and disclose your information in accordance with our Privacy Policy, including to provide you with your requested products or services and to keep you informed of other Citrus Media publications, products, services and events. Our Privacy Policy is located at It also sets out how you can access or correct your personal information and lodge a complaint. Citrus Media may disclose your personal information offshore to joint venture partners, service providers and agents located throughout the world, including in New Zealand, USA, the Philippines and the European Union. In addition, this issue may contain Reader Offers, being offers, competitions or surveys. Reader Offers may require you to provide personal information to enter or to take part. Personal information collected for Reader Offers may be disclosed by us to service providers assisting Citrus Media in the conduct of the Reader Offer and to other organisations providing special prizes or offers that are part of the Reader Offer. An opt-out choice is provided with a Reader Offer. Unless you exercise that opt-out choice, personal information collected for Reader Offers may also be disclosed by us to other organisations for use by them to inform you about other products, services or events or to give to other organisations that may use this information for this purpose. If you require further information, please contact Privacy Officer either by email at or mail at PO Box 20154, World Square NSW 2002.


Who wants to win a hiking trip for two to the Great Wall of China?!



Photography Dave Wheeler Art direction Brooke Lyons Styling Jess Pecoraro Hair and make-up Ania Milczarczyk/DLM using Laura Mercier and Oribe Model Kayla Itsines Kayla wears Lorna Jane crop top (worn underneath), $67.99, and Jaggad crop top, $79.95, from The Iconic; P.E Nation shorts, $99; Apple watch, from $399.



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Expert panel Meet the pros lending their expertise to our pages...

Your fave thing to do outdoors is… EDITOR Samera Kamaleddine ART DIRECTOR Brooke Lyons



“Avoid mag pies. Sometimes by running.”

CHIEF SUBEDITOR Alice Harrington

Kate Wood chiropractor

Dr Claudia Lee general practitioner

Brad McIntosh physiotherapist

Caitlin Reid dietitian

Belinda Kirkpatrick naturopath

Blake Worrall-Thompson PT and wellness coach

Kate Kendall yoga instructor

Yolande Herring kinesiologist

Dr Lissa Johnson psychologist

“Eat and siesta: I think they call it a picnic.”


“Swim in the ocean.”

Libby Babet personal trainer


“Early morning walks.” “Lay in the sun with a good book!”

INTERN Tammy Phounsavanh

NATIONAL ADVERTISING MANAGER Whitney Speller, 0405 910 008,

“Hiking with a view!”



Steph Prem Pilates instructor PUBLISHED BY CITRUS MEDIA

Our pros share their corestrength secrets on page 72

Women’s Fitness is published by Citrus Media, Level 2, 59 Buckingham St, Surry Hills NSW 2010 under licence from Dennis Publishing Limited. All rights in the title of this magazine belong to Dennis Publishing Limited absolutely and the title of this magazine may not be reproduced, whether in whole or in part, without its prior written consent. Certain content used in this magazine belongs to Dennis Publishing Limited and is used under licence. © Citrus Media. All rights reserved. Printed by Bluestar Web, 83 Derby St, Silverwater NSW 2128. Distributed by Gordon and Gotch in Australia and New Zealand. Price in Australia $6.95; price in New Zealand $7.99 (inc GST). All prices quoted in Women’s Fitness include GST and are approximate and in Australian dollars unless otherwise stated. Citrus Media accepts no responsibility for damage or loss of material submitted for publication. Please keep duplicates of text and illustrative material. For all subscription enquiries, visit; email; or phone 13 61 16 between 8am and 6pm (AEDT) Monday to Friday. Correspondence should be addressed to: Magshop, GPO Box 4967, Sydney NSW 2001. To subscribe, see page 86.










The heat is on WELCOME TO OUR FIRST EVER ‘SUMMER’ ISSUE (because all the other months were taken!). It’s pretty much just another opportunity for me to talk about how I reckon summer is the fairest season of them all… jokes! The legit reason for this bonus issue is to ensure that you’re not only topping up your vitamin D levels during the sunnier months, but also your wellness levels. I spend a lot of time walking, running and lying on the beach in summer, which equates to a lot of alone time – and the thing is, me and alone time have a bit of a love/hate relationship. I don’t always love being alone with my thoughts. Sure, it can be when I dream up my craziest (read: bestest) ideas, but sometimes it’s when I get myself kinda down about what isn’t going so dreamy in my life. It’s not only the sun shining its heat rays all over me – I put the heat on myself, too. For some reason, summertime for me seems to spur on this silly self-inflicted pressure to figure out all the life plans (well, next year’s life plans anyway). It’s the easiest way to turn summer into a mega downer, that’s for sure! If you’re like me, and you are spending waaaaay too much time feeling pressurecooked right now, then our ‘Summer Wellness Guide’ on page 34 should help you take the heat off, and build a healthy body and healthy mind while you’re at it. There’s a mantra on page 48 that sums this issue up a little better: “The most important wealth is health.” So, go on, try giving your emotions some first-aid, discover how to really harness the power of sunshine, hack your health in as little as 30 seconds, or (stay with me here) have a crystal face mask (it’s a thing, and it’s not even that weird). You could even learn to embrace the stuff you wouldn’t normally in the heat – like taking your running to the next level (run to page 66), or switching on the slow-cooker for delish and healthy post-swimming feasts (get your belly ready for page 88). Remember when we were kids and summer simply meant searching for fun feels? We were onto something that we should have held onto super tightly. Okay, we didn’t exactly have health smarts (hey, Mr Whippy!) but we were active, positive and carefree. I have such awesome memories of my childhood summers spent at Gunnamatta Bay, a beach in Sydney’s south, with my sister and our 683 cousins. I hated the way my mum made us swim in T-shirts because she was so paranoid about sunburn (you don’t have to be with our SPF rundown on page 122). But I loved the way we’d stay in the ocean, T-shirts and all, until the sun was going down and we were shivering and purple. I’ll take my summers without the shivering and purple now, thanks, but I’m pretty keen to find those feels again! I hope you find your best summer feels, too. Enjoy the issue!

WHEN WE WERE YOUNG… Team WF’s fave summer childhood memories



Samera Kamaleddine, Editor Follow me: samerak Follow WF: womensfitnessmag


We’ve got more speedy sweat sessions this issue! Work out for four, seven or 10 minutes…






We’re giving away an awesome hiking trip (for two!) to the Great Wall of China!


p130 womensfitnessaustralia



“ “

Photography by Lyndon Marceau

YourSAY @nicoleimpey



INSTA-LOVE We love seeing how you read Women’s Fitness...

Our fave pic of the month!

Thanks for sharing your relaxing snap with us, @__angiematthews__. You’ve won a threemonth supply of Go Natural Active Protein Bars, valued at $329, to keep you fuelled all summer long g. @sallylowrie





essmag! Plus, follow us tn sfi en om #w d an es ov Tag #WFl Enjoying the new issue? @womensfitnessmag for healthy inspo and to catch up with the WF team. 12




Tired of being tired? *

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T R E N D I N G N O W O N ...

Instead of setting yourself a long list of New Year resolutions that you’ll probs break by Australia Day, try letting go of a few nasty habits. Your 2017 is already looking a whole lot brighter…

SECRET SWIMMING SPOTS These are seriously Instagrammable hidden gems. From Kakadu to the MacDonnell ranges – put them all on your bucket list.

SUMMER SWEAT Looking for some fun (but tough) outdoor workouts that only require a mat? We’ve got the goods. Head to our site for our threepart video series with BUF trainer, Alicia Beveridge.

Yoga vs Pilates Ever wonder what the actual difference is between yoga and Pilates? Our experts explain it so you’ll never be confused again.

LIKE US FOLLOW US @womensfitnessmag LISTEN TO US on Spotify – search for womensfitnessau 14





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LiveFIT FOREVER YOUNG The key to a longer life? That’d be books. Research published in the journal Social Science & Medicine found that people who read for 30 minutes a day are 20 per cent less likely to kick the bucket early. So, once you’ve finished Amy Schumer’s The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo, give these other life-affirming reads a go: 1 THE GIRL BEFORE BY J.P DELANEY (HACHETTE, $32.99) If you liked Gone Girl,

you’ll love this psychological thriller. Read it before it makes its way onto the big screen and get ready for plot twist after plot twist. 2 THE LIGHT BETWEEN OCEANS BY M.L STEDMAN (PENGUIN, $22.99) You’ll want

to have your tissues at the ready for this historical romance. Love, war, betrayal – it’s got it all.



iconic Aussie author Tim Winton through his powerful collection of autobiographical tales.



HITS Enjoy a healthy body and mind with the latest in good living

Press play

What can boost team morale faster than a box of chocolates? Music, say researchers from Cornell University, but before you blast that Adele ballad at full volume, you might want to reassess your song choice. According to the experts, people are about a third more likely to contribute to the good of the team when they listen to happy beats. On the flipside, if people listen to unpleasant tunes (in the study’s case, some lesser-known heavy metal songs), they prefer to do things for their own benefit. Well, go on then, hit repeat on that new Justin Bieber banger.


Guilt-free eats

According to not-so-great news from the CSIRO, your diet could do with a makeover. After analysing the eating habits of more than 86,000 Aussies, researchers found that four out of five people fail to get enough of the good stuff, taking our national Healthy Diet Score (check yours at to a less-than-stellar 59 out of 100. Up your healthy eating cred with guilt-free recipe inspo from these tasty blogs.


Peanut butter chocolate bark, plum chia jam and butter bean brownies. Sold!



Treat your tastebuds to the likes of apple chia oat muffins, blackcurrant banana ice-cream bars and cherry ricotta cake.

Still think gluten-free sweets can’t hit the spot? Let the berry rose trifle change your mind.


Fit kit

Score your healthiest bod yet with these summer essentials

FUEL UP Packed with protein, vitamin B3 and magnesium, the Go Natural Savoury Nuts & Seeds Bar in Smokey BBQ, $30.25 for a box of 16, gonatural., is the perfect mid-arvo snack.

BLEND IT Low in sugar but high in flavour, the Pureharvest Unsweetened Organic Activated Almond Milk, $3.08,, is your morning smoothie’s new best friend.

Walk it off

Reason #9,999,999 you should get off the couch and go for a walk: Light exercise may lower your risk of bacterial infections. Research published by the American College of Sports Medicine found that people who take part in ‘leisure-time physical activity’ (we’re taking that to mean walking around the local Westfield) are 10 per cent less likely to experience bacterial infections. The study found that participants who took part in moderate exercise had a lower chance of developing urinary tract bacterial infections as well, so to keep your whole bod free of the bad stuff, get up and move!

Off the grid

Hands up if you go over your phone’s data limit every month? You’re not alone – a survey by Roy Morgan Research found that one in five of us are biting off more than we can chew. While there’s nothing like a YouTube sesh to pass the time on a long bus or train trip, using more data seems to equal more problems (*cough* higher bills), so why not try these phone-free activities instead? ■ READ A BOOK Stash the novel that’s been gathering dust on your bedside table in your handbag and beat the boredom of your afternoon commute. ■

STRETCH IT OUT Instead of chilling on the couch surfing Facebook and Snapchat, treat your bod to a juicy back stretch or hip opener. You’ll boost your circulation, give your flexibility a helping hand and ease muscle pain. ■ CHALLENGE YOUR BRAIN Whip out a Sudoku, put together an old-school 1,000-piece puzzle or master a crossword. You’ll keep yourself entertained and you might lower your risk of Alzheimer’s, too, especially if you make it a habit.



GET AHEAD Track your pace, steps, heart rate and sleep patterns with the new Polar M200 GPS running watch, $199, Did we mention it’s waterproof?

Summer inspiration CLICK: Rebel Recipes

( If you like the sound of banana baobab porridge, raw vegan pumpkin pies and healthy coconut bounteesers (yep, a cross between a Bounty and a Malteser), then favourite this delish site, ASAP. READ: House Plants by Isabelle Palmer (Hardie Grant, $39.99) Keep killing your succulents? Make friends with this handy guide by gardening expert Isabelle Palmer, who’ll teach you how to take better care of your plants. Hello, green thumb! WATCH: CrashCourse Up your IQ with these speedy YouTube lessons. Brush up on your psychology, biology, world history and philosophy know-how and learn how to boost your motivation. LISTEN: Starboy by The Weeknd (iTunes, $19.99) Smash your HIIT sesh with “False Alarm”, then cool down to moody title track, “Starboy”. @womensfitnessau


Back to school Tap into your inner Monet, Celine Dion or J. K. Rowling for a major health boost. Researchers from the University of Oxford have found that people who enrol in weekly after-work classes (in fields such as arts and crafts, singing or creative writing), increase their physical and mental wellbeing as well as overall life satisfaction. That’s not all, either. Apparently the back-to-schoolers also experienced a boost in self-confidence and self-control, were more willing to tackle new challenges and even felt more motivated to work out. Sheesh! Time to enrol, folks.


Keep it clean

You might want to sit down, because US researchers have just shattered the beloved ‘five-second rule’. You’re probs still in shock (and denial), but hear us out: Depending on how wet your food is and the type of surface you drop it on, bacteria can latch on instantaneously. While dry, hard substances pick up fewer germs (since there’s no moisture to aid the transfer of bacteria), wet foods such as watermelon can pick up a host of nasty friends in one second. Drop something on carpet and, surprisingly, you’ll get less contaminated food compared to stainless steel and wood surfaces. Oh, and if you’re wondering what happens if you wait five seconds, turns out the longer you leave something on the floor, the more bacteria you’ll swallow once you pick it up. Now let’s all say a sad goodbye to the protein ball we just dropped on the floor.

Better together

We get it: Binge-watching Netflix is not ideal for your fitness – but it might be good for your love life. Yep, a study in the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships found that watching films and TV with your other half can help you feel closer to them. The pros point out that usually it’s a shared group of friends that boosts the health of relationships, but in lieu of a wider social circle, snuggling up on the couch with your fave series (and, um, partner) can have similar positive effects. Of course, too much screen time spells bad news for your mental and physical health, so keep your couch sessions to a minimum and take up some couple-friendly hobbies such as hiking or mini golf as well.





Bend and go

Uh-oh, yogis, it looks like your yin yoga sesh might not count towards the recommended 30 minutes of daily activity. Yeah, we know, holding those poses is tough work, but unless you’re working up a sweat with some flowing sun salutations, that slower-paced class only counts as light exercise, which isn’t enough to take you out of the ‘sedentary lifestyle’ category. If you combine your hatha sessions with a moderate jog or HIIT sesh, though, you’re in the clear. Oh, and just in case you were about to ditch the studio altogether, listen up: Researchers also noted that yoga (even the light kind) can increase your strength, balance and flexibility as well as decrease stress, so it’s still worth hitting the mat – especially if it’s the Pranamat ECO, $175, pranamat. com, which offers up deeper and more intense yoga sessions thanks to its lotus-flower massagers.


Heat wave

Fountain of youth If you’ve ever hashtaged ‘pizza is life’, Aussie researchers think you might be on to something. During a recent study, scientists from the University of Sydney found that diets high in carbohydrates and low in protein might be the secret to a longer life. Apparently munching on carbs triggers the production of an obesityfighting and immune-boosting hormone, which may up your life expectancy. While you wait for those wholegrain muffins to bake, give these other life-boosting tips a try:

Get perspective: People who view themselves as being young live for longer, say UK researchers, so keep your inner child happy by exploring new places and making time for friends. Go nuts: Add a handful of almonds or walnuts to your meal plan, stat. Researchers from Harvard University found that people who eat nuts on the daily live longer than those who don’t. Chill out: Stress can lead to a whole bunch of health woes, so schedule in some ‘me time’ or stay cool, calm and collected with a little meditation.

Need some summer vacay inspo? Follow these feeds, stat

@gypsea_lust From jungle waterslides in Hawaii to glacier lakes in the US and flower fields in India, photographer Lauren Bullen will hit you with a serious case of wanderlust.

Try this... Guilt-free cocktail

@lisadanielle__ Aussie babe Lisa Smith will have you reaching for your passport, thanks to her bohemien snaps, which take you from the Sahara to the crystal waters of Byron Bay.

Treat yourself to this hydrating summer bevvy (in moderation, of course!) You’ll need cup pineapple cup mango handful strawberries 1 cup coconut water cup ice Toss all ingredients in a blender, pour into a glass, top with a novelty umbrella and drink up!



@worldwanderlust Moscow in the summertime? Cave swims in Bosnia? Feasting on pizza at Lake Como? Travel and lifestyle blogger Brooke Saward does it all. Prepare to be all kinds of jeal.






Y R A I D FIT d sweat it out at one Sign up, shhow up annd ts of these coming-soon even


20 December

8 January

Surf and Turf Santa Chase, NSW Think you can outrun Santa? He’ll be tearing up the 1km, 4km and 8km tracks at Sydney’s Wakehurst Golf Club in this night race – and if you beat him to the finish line, you could win yourself some stellar prizes.

Resolution Run, Qld Make good on your new-year fitness goals and sign up for the Brisbane Resolution Run. Whether you’re pumped for a 6km fun run, keen to pick up the Ks on the 9km course or down to walk it out in the 1km, you’ll find a route to suit.

15 January

26 December

Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race, NSW

Norton Summit Time Trial, SA

Shake yourself out of that Boxing Day food coma with the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race. Head down to the shore to see the boats take off IRL or relax and watch it from the couch while tucking into those Christmas leftovers.

Test your cycling skills under real racing conditions in this hilly time trial. Stretching over a tough 5.6km climb, the course offers up stunning scenic views and a chance to push your glutes to their limits. Oh, and there’s some juicy prize money up for grabs if you’re fastest to cross the finish line.

31 December

15 January

New Year’s Eve Run and Breakfast, Vic End 2016 on a runner’s high! Get your last endorphin hit for the year with a run through Melbourne’s beautiful Royal Botanic Gardens – fresh croissants await you at the finish.


Cadbury Marathon, Tas Spend your Sunday down at the Cadbury Chocolate Factory and race around the River Derwent. Give the marathon a crack, dip your toes in the half or get your jog on in the 5km and 10km events. You’ll have earned at least a few bites of Dairy Milk by the end!



15 January

Triathlon Pink, Vic Gather your girl squad for this women’sonly triathlon at the Melbourne Sports and Aquatic Centre. If you’re not quite ready to tackle the swim/bike/run trio, pull on your sneaks and dominate the fun run instead. Whichever muscle-busting challenge you choose, don’t forget to raise some funds for the National Breast Cancer Foundation while you’re at it.

16-29 January

Australian Open, Vic Get your (imaginary) rackets at the ready because the Australian Open is here – and it’s bringing some of the world’s biggest tennis stars Down Under. Make your way to Melbourne’s Rod Laver Arena to watch on-court queens like Serena Williams and Angelique Kerber give it their best shot.

22 January

Warriewood to Mona Vale Ocean Swim, NSW Got a sturdy stroke? Take on this epic 1.6km ocean swim from Warriewood to Mona Vale. Sure, it might seem short, but those breaks and gutters are sure to test your skills. Once you’ve done the hard yards, kick back on the sand and enjoy the sunshine. @womensfitnessau



WO M E N ’ S F IT N E S S promotion


The gift of knowledge Want to find out what you’re really made of? Then you’d best be asking old Saint Nick for the TomTom Touch (RRP from $219) this Christmas. With one push of a button, this sleek fitness tracker measures your percentage of body fat and muscle mass and has an onboard heart-rate monitor to give you a deeper understanding of your current fitness level so you can keep smashing your fit goals. The first of its kind to offer body composition analysis on your wrist. With sports mode, steps, sleep, phone notifications and all-day heart-rate tracking, this wrist candy is designed to be worn 24/7. It’s time to unwrap your potential! Visit


PLAYER WF’s Samera Kamaleddine sits down (er, in a confined space) to chat about empowerment with superstar PT, and this month’s cover girl, Kayla Itsines I DON’T NORMALLY CONDUCT INTERVIEWS IN THE BACK SEAT OF A CAR, but this Women’s Fitness cover shoot is taking place on a freakishly cold spring day. Kayla Itsines has flown in from her hometown of Adelaide, to stand in front of our lens at a Sydney park with spectacular harbour views – braving the less-than-spectacular wind in a crop top and shorts. Windswept isn’t really the look we’re going for today, but the 25-year-old trainer-turned-global-fitness-phenomenon is sucking it up like a pro, with absolutely zero fuss. That’s the defining feature about Kayla – she just gets shiz done. And she sure has gotten a lot done in just a few years. After graduating from the Australian Institute of Fitness, she quickly took the successes she was having with her clients and turned it into an e-book sensation on a worldwide scale: the Bikini Body Guide (BBG). Today, the program, which is full of 28-minute workouts guaranteed to make your muscles ache and your confidence sky-rocket, has inspired an online community of 10,000,000 women. It’s a community united by hashtags on Instagram (just do a quick search for #kaylasarmy, #bbg or #sweatwithkayla and you’ll get the gist) – and it’s growing with each download of her app, Sweat With Kayla. She might be the biggest fitness star on the planet, but her message isn’t about getting skinny. She shuns fad diets and deprivation, which is why she’s now hitting shelves with her first book, The Bikini Body 24

When you give or receive a compliment, it’s an empowering feeling. So I’m trying to encourage women to do that.

28 Day Healthy Eating & Lifestyle Guide. Before she embarks on her global book tour next month, we take respite from the gusty conditions outside (this is where that back seat comes in…) for an exclusive chat with the woman behind the screen.

WHAT DO YOU DO EVERY DAY TO FEEL GOOD ABOUT YOURSELF? I obviously love working out; that makes me feel awesome. I think everyone is different when it comes to doing things that are good for them. For me, it’s even just seeing my family. Every day I make sure that I’m doing something that makes me feel good about myself and my life choices.

IN THE INTRO TO YOUR BOOK, YOU SAY: “NOBODY SHOULD BE SHAMED FOR TRYING TO IMPROVE THEMSELVES.” DOES BODY SHAMING TRIGGER SOMETHING FOR YOU? I think shaming in general is really unfair – people shame each other for wanting to do well, whether it be improving their

DO YOU EVER STRUGGLE WITH OTHER WOMEN LOOKING TO YOU AS A BODY GOAL? I wouldn’t say I struggle with it. A lot of the girls in the BBG community start off focusing on how they look – as women we often say, “I want to look like…”. But like anything with fitness and health, as you do the program and start training, you start to

“I love the BBG community because it’s about women empowering other women to do well. That’s why [it’s] so powerful” health or wanting to get a better job. In general, it needs to stop. I love the BBG community so much because it’s about women empowering other women to do well. That’s why my community is so powerful; it’s full of girls that feel safe. HOW CAN WE BE KINDER TO EACH OTHER AND OURSELVES? It’s about supporting other women and complimenting other women. Rather than saying, “You should…” say, “You look amazing; you’re glowing.” Just little compliments to make someone’s day.



focus more on how you feel instead. That’s a huge change that’s been happening lately. They’re starting to say, “I don’t mind what I look like, I really care about how I feel on the inside.” Do you feel beautiful? Do you feel healthy? Do you feel strong? Then yes, you’re happy. It’s an internal transformation. HOW DOES THIS REFLECT ON YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA? It’s generally not me people see first; they see other women on my page. Someone was going through my page recently and said, “These girls are amazing! They’re so @womensfitnessau

LiveFIT ARE YOU A BIG FOODIE? I love food so much. I love carbs, I love everything! I grew up in a Greek family, so food played a big part in my life. Greek food is mainly meat and salads and vegetables; it’s super, super healthy. I love oregano – that’s very Greek. I put it on my salads, I put it on any meats that I cook with. Basically everything. A little bit of oregano just tastes good. WHAT DO YOU RECKON IS A BIG MISCONCEPTION ABOUT YOU? One that comes to mind straight away is that I work out for hours and hours. I work out for 30 minutes, three times a week. I follow my program on my phone. People think, “She must work out for hours a day; she mustn’t eat dessert.” I’m not like that at all. I am compleeeetely normal. I’ve run into a few girls in Sydney who have said, “We can’t believe how normal you are!” ANY FAVE WORKOUT MOVES? I love anything with dumbbells. I love, obviously, burpees and challenging things like box jumps to see how high I can jump. I LOVE HOW YOU SAY OBVIOUSLY BURPEES! DOESN’T EVERYONE HATE BURPEES? I love burpees! I put them in everything. The girls will understand when they’re reading this! HOW DO YOU SCORE THE HOLY GRAIL OF WELLNESS – BALANCE? It’s all about prioritising what’s important to you. It’s so different for everyone. For me, I prioritise eating, sleeping, my family, so I will work out that in a day I need to eat at these times, sleep obviously (I want to sleep from 10pm until 5am, or whatever it is) and I want to see my family. Then I put everything else in between.

inspiring, they’re all different, I’m really inspired to work out.” It wasn’t, “I want to look like you,” it was, “I want to feel like they do.” There are parts of my Instagram that are me, maybe after I work out I’ll take a photo. But I’m trying to be pretty educational with my page; I really want it to be more about the success of other women. Celebrating their success and complimenting them. They’ll send me a private message saying, “I can’t believe how positive everyone was towards my photo, I didn’t think I looked that great.” They just don’t realise!

WHAT QUESTION DO YOU GET ASKED THE MOST? “How do you say your last name?” I get asked a tonne of questions but that’s always at the top. Isn’t that funny? People also ask what I eat and what they should eat. What I like and what works for me may not be someone else’s preference. It’s about finding what works for you. That’s why I created the book, to say, “let’s do this together”. I just uploaded a photo of me eating moussaka and people said, “We don’t believe you eat that!” Wait until you see this book – I eat a variety of food; it even has desserts in there.



YOU HOLD VERY TRUE TO YOUR VALUES, DON’T YOU? I’m open to suggestion when people say, “You should do this,” of course, but things like eating, sleeping, family, my morals, what I wear, stuff like that, it’s just me. WHERE DO YOU GET YOUR DRIVE AND AMBITION FROM? It comes from the community. Some of these women have gone through so much. Their stories are inspiring. One story I just uploaded was about a woman who had a drug addiction. She came out of it; she’s pulling her life together. I look at her and think, if she can do this, I can one hundred percent get up today and be a role model. Being a role model is a big drive for me. @womensfitnessau



“This salad makes a regular appearance at our family barbecues. It’s so lig ht and fresh!”

GRILLED BABY OCTOPUS WITH FENNEL, ROCKET AND APPLE SALAD SERVES 2 300g baby octopus, cleaned 3 tsp olive oil 1 tsp red wine vinegar lemon zest, finely grated, and juice, to taste 1 garlic clove, crushed sea salt and ground black pepper, to taste 60g salt-reduced low-fat feta cheese, crumbled 1 tbs fresh parsley, finely chopped FENNEL, ROCKET AND APPLE SALAD 2 small fennel bulbs, thinly sliced large handful rocket leaves 75g tinned chickpeas, drained and rinsed 2 medium green apples, cored and sliced juice of lemon CROUTONS 2 slices sourdough bread oil spray garlic clove 1 Place the baby octopus in a steamer basket over a saucepan of boiling water. 26

Cover and steam for 5-6 minutes, until the octopus has curled slightly and is cooked through. Transfer to a bowl and set aside. 2 Whisk the olive oil, red wine vinegar, lemon zest and juice, garlic, salt and pepper together in a medium bowl. 3 Place the octopus in the bowl containing the marinade. Cover with cling wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight. 4 Preheat a barbecue grill-plate or chargrill pan over medium-high heat. 5 To make the salad, put the fennel, rocket, chickpeas and apple in a bowl. Drizzle over the lemon juice and toss gently. 6 To make the croutons, spray both sides of the sourdough bread with oil spray. Place on the barbecue grill-plate or chargrill pan for 1-2 minutes on each side or until toasted. Rub the cut garlic clove over the charred bread for flavour. 7 Drain the octopus and grill on the barbecue grill-plate or chargrill pan for 4-5 minutes or until the edges are slightly charred and the flesh is warmed through, turning frequently. 8 To serve, place the salad on two serving plates and top with the grilled octopus. Sprinkle over the feta and parsley. Serve the croutons on the side.



VEGETARIAN MOUSSAKA SERVES 2 1 medium eggplant, thinly sliced oil spray 1 tsp olive oil small brown onion, finely diced 1 garlic clove, crushed 1 medium carrot, coarsely grated 1 tsp dried oregano 220g tinned crushed tomatoes cup salt-reduced vegetable stock 450g tinned brown lentils, drained and rinsed 1 medium potato, peeled 40g reduced-fat cheddar cheese, grated 1 Preheat the oven to 180°C (160°C fan-forced) and line a baking tray with baking paper. 2 Lay the eggplant on the lined baking tray in a single layer and spray lightly with oil spray. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until tender. Set aside. 3 Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic and carrot and cook for 5 minutes or until soft, stirring occasionally. Add the oregano and cook for 1 minute @womensfitnessau

LiveFIT “When I was g rowing up, every time I visited my yiayia, she’d ask what I would like for dinner. My answer was always, ‘Yemista!’ I still love this dish and I’m sure you will, too!”


YEMISTA (STUFFED CAPSICUM WITH RICE) or until fragrant, stirring constantly. 4 Stir in the tomatoes, vegetable stock and lentils. Reduce the heat to mediumlow and simmer, covered, for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. 5 Place the potato in a saucepan and pour in enough cold water to almost cover it. Bring to the boil over high heat and boil for 15 minutes or until the potato is tender, then drain and set aside. When it’s cool enough to handle, cut into 5mm thick slices. 6 Spread a small ladle of lentil mixture over the base of a 2-litre capacity baking dish. Layer half of the eggplant slices over the top, followed by half of the remaining lentil mixture. Repeat the layers again, finishing with the lentil mixture on top. 7 Arrange the potato slices over the lentil mixture and sprinkle over the grated cheese. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes or until the potato is golden. Leave to stand for 5 minutes and serve.

“Moussaka is one of my fave Greek dishes. Traditionally it’s made with meat, but I created this version so my vegetarian friends don’t miss out!”

SERVES 2 90g brown rice 1 slice wholemeal bread 3 tsp olive oil small brown onion, finely chopped 1 garlic clove, crushed 220g turkey or chicken mince 150g tinned crushed tomatoes 1 tbs tomato paste 20g pine nuts 1 tbs fresh parsley, finely chopped 2 tsp fresh mint, finely chopped juice and zest of 1 lemon, finely grated sea salt and ground black pepper 1 medium red capsicum, halved lengthways and seeds removed 1 Place the rice and 1 cup of water in a small saucepan over high heat and bring to the boil, stirring occasionally. Cover and reduce the heat to medium-low. Simmer for 20-25 minutes or until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender. Remove from the heat and leave to stand, covered for 5 minutes. 2 Tear the wholemeal bread into small pieces. Place in a food processor and process until coarse crumbs form.



3 Preheat the oven to 180°C (160°C fan-forced) and line a baking tray with baking paper. 4 Heat 2 tsp of olive oil in a large non-stick fry pan over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic and mince and cook for 10 minutes or until the mince is browned, stirring frequently with a wooden spoon to break the mince up. Remove from the heat. 5 Add the cooked rice, crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, pine nuts, parsley, mint, lemon zest and juice, salt and pepper and stir gently to combine. 6 Fill each capsicum half with half of the stuffing. Place the stuffed capsicum halves on the lined baking tray. Sprinkle over the breadcrumbs and drizzle over the remaining olive oil. 7 Bake in the oven for 40-45 minutes or until the capsicum is tender. Serve.

Get more awesome recipes in The Bikini Body 28 Day Healthy Eating & Lifestyle Guide by Kayla Itsines ($39.95, Pan Macmillan Australia).



SLEEP ON IT If your mattress has seen better days (and nights), it could be harming your health





LiveFIT FACT: WE SPEND A THIRD OF OUR LIVES IN BED. And while your doona den might double as a home office/Netflix bunker/eat-in snack pantry, it’s pretty imperative that you also get in some quality zzzs while you’re there. Research has shown that a lack of sleep can be as bad for your brain and performance as a few too many Long Island Ice Teas. A good snooze is also vital for healing damaged cells, boosting your immune system and recharging your hard-working heart and muscles at the end of the day. That’s why it’s pretty concerning that, according to The Great Australian Sleep Report, only 17 per cent of Aussies wake up feeling rested. While it may help to turn off your tech and sip all the chamomile tea before bed, it’s possible that a different culprit could be playing havoc with your slumber: your mattress. If you can’t remember when you bought yours (but you suspect it might have been back when Sex and the City was still airing new episodes), you’re probably overdue for a new one. “A good quality mattress will have a lifespan of eight to 10 years,” says Wade Ganzer, bedding industry spokesperson for Sealy. “Many people wait too long to replace theirs. If you wake up with any pain or discomfort, it’s a sign that you’ve waited too long!” And even though a mattress may seem like a boring, mandatory expense you can put off (file it away in the same category as socks and toothbrushes), it turns out, there are a stack of ways an old-as-the-hills mattress could be sabotaging your wellbeing.


Finding your mattress match isn’t as easy as swiping right on an app. Before you even step foot in your local Mattresses ’R’ Us, do your homework. “Make a note of your sleep patterns during the week prior,” tips Ganzer. Are you a front, back or side sleeper? Do you snooze like a log or are you more restless than the Princess and the Pea? It’s also a good idea to cast your mind back to comfy mattresses you’ve slept on. If the spare bed at your parent’s place always gives you a good night’s rest, find out what kind of mattress it is. When it comes to the testing phase, Ganzer says to begin by finding your own comfort preference – just like Goldilocks, you want to find one that’s not too hard, not too soft, but just right. Start by lying on the softest mattress in the showroom, follow it up with something quite firm, then work your way around the store to find your ideal middle ground. “If you are a side-sleeper or toss and turn in bed, try to stay away from anything too firm as it will apply additional pressure to your shoulders and hips,” tips Ganzer. Next up: the different technologies. If the salesperson’s talk about memory foam, coil springs and latex is making your eyes glaze over, Ganzer says to stay focused on what feels good for you. “It’s important to try a range of models as the biggest mistake is to select the wrong comfort choice. Different technologies are designed to conform and support your body,” explains Ganzer. “Memory foam and latex are designed to cradle the body and reduce pressure-point build-up, while mattresses with a spring system are designed to support the body.” The best way to get a feel for your dream bed? Give it time. According to One of the most common problems Ganzer, you should spend around 10-15 caused by an old mattress (or the wrong minutes on your mattress of choice in mattress) is back pain. A good mattress Think you just plop your mattress your usual sleeping position. “After will support the natural curvature down on the frame and forget about it? a while, you may begin to feel of your spine and keep it in proper pressure-point build-up or start to alignment, but a bed without that Think again. Just like your bod, keeping feel uncomfortable,” says Ganzer. support can leave you with muscle your mattress in the best shape requires a bit “If your hips are sinking into the fatigue and aches. Just ask of work. “Rotating your mattress regularly is a mattress, it could be a sign you’re researchers from Oklahoma State must to ensure even settlement of the not getting the right support.” University in the US, who found comfort layers,” says Ganzer. “It’s a good It might take you a bit of time to that when people replaced their idea to rotate it every two weeks in the lock in your final choice (if you’re really mattresses after five years, they first three months and once every unsure, some mattress companies offer experienced a 62 per cent reduction free-return trial periods to let you test the in back and shoulder pain, as well as a two months thereafter.” bed at home), but it’s an investment you boost in sleep quality and comfort. want to get right. You’ll sleep soundly once Dealing with back pain and skipping you know your mattress has your back. slumber can also send your cortisol levels


soaring, which is why it makes total sense that upgrading your mattress can also help downgrade your stress levels. In a study published in the Journal of Chiropractic Medicine, scientists asked a bunch of volunteers to sleep on their regular mattress for 28 nights, then trade it in for a fresh medium-firm model for their next sleeping stint. The new beds resulted in a significant decrease in stress, which the researchers reckon was all down to better quality shut-eye. Need another reason to reconsider your bedding sitch? Consider the number of dust mites sharing your sheets. They might not be visible to the eye without a CSI-style magnifying glass, but you’re probably sleeping with anywhere between 100,000 and 1 million of these tiny critters, which feast on the dead skin you shed (#gross). But icky-ness aside, the allergens from dust mites can cause big problems for your health – think itchy skin, sneezing, eczema, watery eyes, wheezing, coughing or shortness of breath. One of the places they love to live and breed? Yep, your dark, warm, humid mattress. If you know you’re allergic, consider investing in an allergyproof mattress cover, and vacuum your mattress at least twice a year – paying close attention to the seam line. If it’s snoring that’s keeping you up at night (whether you sleep with a foghorn or you’re the noisy culprit), your ageing mattress could be making it even worse. A lack of support for your body can cause you to sink into the mattress, putting your (or your bed-mate’s) airways under tension, resulting in some pretty loud breathing – and a guarantee of waking up on the wrong side of the bed.






Confidence Project PART 1: BODY POWERED BY


HE O Eliza Avery, 20, NSW

“I grew up in a very sporty family… and this allowed me to understand the impact that fitness has on one’s mindset. Unfortunately, like most girls, I grew up struggling with body image and the social idea that being pretty, skinny and popular was what being a girl was about. I put on weight in school, which led me to a dark period because I felt unworthy. My family helped me through this – and I turned my mindset to exercising for myself and not as a chore to change my body. I can proudly say that this year I completed two half marathons. I’m not saying completing a marathon is what will cure a lack of selfesteem, but I know that fitness has allowed me to understand that being a woman is about strength, confidence and drive. The feeling after a tough workout session is… nothing but empowering and I wish to share this feeling with women


around me. The power that fitness can have on one’s mind is a force to be reckoned with and I don’t know where I would be without it. You’ve got to put yourself first… it’s pretty difficult, but this means absolutely no comparisons! Everybody is different. Pick the clothes, the food, and the type and amount of exercise that works for you, and that makes you happy, no one else. The message I want to spread to WF readers is… know that being a woman has nothing to do with your image. Fitness is feeling good on the inside and outside, and should have absolutely nothing to do with dress sizes, measurement tapes or comparisons. Fitness shouldn’t be about sacrificing things you love to change your body into what society expects. It is about nourishing yourself and loving yourself. I wish for WF readers to value their confidence and happiness. What really matters is how we feel and how we feel about ourselves – not what the scales say or what society wants.”





Boost your other vitamin C with these fit words from our ‘Search

Kristen Lester, 27, SA “In 2009 I gave up my netball career… after walking away from a car accident with whiplash. My body wasn’t coping and I was told I really had to focus on getting my core strong to help keep everything supported and to strengthen my muscles to try and eliminate pain. I joined a gym and got a trainer, who I still see once a week. From beach walks to stair runs and sweaty ab sessions… I try to make the job of toning my body fun and not let it seem like a chore. My partner and I run together. He will often run behind me and it keeps me moving (he is a fantastic runner and has great endurance). When I’m not working out you can find me… going on adventures – I love climbing hills or long drives. Life is so short; we need to make sure we are making new memories all the time. I’m far from perfect… I’m your everyday Aussie girl who can relate to the next girl; I’m just like everyone who battles their body.



I have ‘flaws’ and jiggly bits just like everyone else, but I’m super proud of what I’ve achieved. I’m the girl who keeps motivated, healthy and continues to have the will to push forward no matter what I’m going through, no matter how much pain I’m in. It’s important to try and keep my temple working strong and embracing what I have. The message I want to spread to WF readers is… believe in yourself. Fight past the pain and don’t give up – instead focus on what your body can achieve if you let it. Set goals that are achievable so each goal you’re trying to make doesn’t seem untouchable. Life is a gift, we need to cherish every moment and be grateful for what we have. We are not here for a long time but we are here for a good time and looking after number one – ourselves – is important. No one is blessed with a flawless body. You should be proud of who you are no matter your size and shape.”



Bec Campbell, 25, NSW

Brooke Harper, 29, WA

“My fitness journey actually began… with a break-up! Running quickly offered a vital distraction. Each day, I’d add another little bit to my distance (which was less than a kilometre at the start!). It forced me outdoors, creating a positive outlet to focus my energies on during a really difficult time. Fitness is now my way of life… a means to a happier, healthier me that extends far beyond just the remedy for a bad day. I care less about how exercise makes me look, and far more about how exercise makes me FEEL. I love making exercise fun, embracing variety by weaving it into my lifestyle. This may look like riding my bike to my favourite bakery, enjoying a café brunch after a morning run, starting the day as the sun rises over Bondi Beach or ending a stressful day with peaceful yin yoga. If I am feeling sluggish and unmotivated… a long coastal walk with a girlfriend usually lifts my mood and gets me moving. Some days your body just needs to rest, and I don’t feel bad about skipping the odd workout to sleep in. Food is also meant to be enjoyed, so if I eat a not-so-healthy treat, I savour every mouthful! The message I want to spread to WF readers is… exercise and nutrition is crucial, but I want to instil the absolute importance of striking a balance; that it’s totally okay to enjoy that ice-cream at the beach, that occasional glass of red at dinner or the pancake stack at Sunday brunch. This balance has led me to a whole new level of self-love, finding confidence that radiates from the inside out. I’d love to help others discover this joy, too. I am a firm believer that feeling good is the foundation from which all the other health benefits of physical activity can emerge. Too often I see extremes on either end of the scale – people either don’t care about their health or they fixate on it, which may ironically cause poor health outcomes. I’m blessed to have a healthy body so I choose to nourish it by steering clear of obsessive eating or workout routines, instead focusing on feeling my best without feeling deprived.”


“My fitness journey so far has been… exciting and challenging. About three years ago I started training and really looking after my body after five years of travelling the world and learning not only about other cultures but also myself. My workouts consist of… mostly strength and core work in and out of the gym, I love to play netball and volleyball and have been enjoying CrossFit for the past two years to really lift my fitness regimen (excuse the pun). I’m currently studying to be a personal trainer and would love to specialise in functional fitness for those with sports injuries. I’m also very passionate about kids fitness. This is an area I would love to focus on as fitness and positive attitudes towards healthy lifestyles is so important. I stay body confident by… trying to do the right thing by my body, doing something active most days



and not comparing myself to anyone else. On a ‘blah’ day I love my fit ball – it’s a fun and easy way to get results. My fave wellness mantra is… it’s all about balance! The message I want to spread to WF readers is… enjoy your own company and surround yourself with happiness. I know this may sound like something you see on a coffee mug but when practised it is so refreshing! I truly believe in the power of positivity and inspiration and what these can bring to all of us in creating a fit and healthy life.”




Tegan James, 29, Qld “As a physical education teacher by day… I am driven to spread the message of the importance of health and fitness. Active living and keeping fit was instilled in me from a very young age through the influence of my father, someone who drives my love for running to this day. I felt stuck in an exercise rut… after coming back from a teaching stint in Nauru last year, and needed to incorporate a change of activity to keep physically and mentally fit. I decided to step out of my comfort zone by participating in an eight-week challenge at HIIT Australia, something I had wanted to do for three years. The intention was to discover a new love for fitness that stimulated my mind and body, while increasing my overall strength. I never could have imagined that in 56 days I would have a new lease on my fitness life! Through high-impact exercise and techniques associated with Muay Thai, I have become the best version of myself. It allows me to focus on my mental strength while also relieving any tension or stress. I stay body confident by… moving my body every day, nourishing myself with nutritious foods, hydrating and showing others kindness. I choose to focus on my fitness and eating healthy each day because it makes me feel confident and energised. When I need to lift my confidence, I try to challenge my body further in a workout and test my strength; physically and mentally. My fave mantra is… ‘Don’t be afraid to fail. Don’t be afraid to try’. This year I have lived by this to step outside my comfort zone and chase my dreams. The message I want to spread to WF readers is… it’s so important to look after yourself physically and mentally and to have others around you to guide you along the way. After completing my HIIT challenge I have been inspired to share my positivity for health and fitness even more with the secondary students that I teach. Just like I share with them each day, it is my goal to show others how to challenge yourself. I’ve seen how completing my recent fitness challenge has inspired others around me to do what makes them feel confident and alive.”

Violetta Zivkovic, 29, Vic “I come from a gymnastics and dance background… but during my time as a professional cheerleader I endured a spinal injury. Exhausted, in huge amounts of physical pain, heart broken and lost in what I wanted from life, I quit my job in 2014 and moved to an isolated jungle town in Costa Rica. I started to rehabilitate my injury, mend my heart and mind, and find a new passion. It was here that I qualified as a Pilates teacher. Fast forward to 2016… and I now work as a Pilates teacher and spin instructor. I share my story – that you can come back from injury and triumph – to inspire other women. I stay body confident by… having a good relationship with the person looking at me in the mirror, positive inner dialogue, being empowered and embracing my features. I’m 155cm and have a muscly build. I get called a little pocket rocket and I love that! When I’m not working out you can find me… in an airport on my way to the next adventure. Cliff jumping in the Philippines, snorkelling in the Caribbean, dancing at Carnival in Brazil… The message I want to spread to WF readers is… the effect you have on others is the most valuable currency there is. Be a motivator to

the women around you who are scared or don’t know how to start their fitness journey. Your influence will be the greatest gift you can give. Don’t be afraid to make choices that put your health first – I left a wellpaid job for the chance to share and educate women through Pilates. I encourage all women embarking on a fitness journey to understand this life choice isn’t just about aesthetics but your long-term health and the relationship you have with your body. I’ve hit rock bottom, then come back swinging. Don’t worry about where you are today – you won’t be there forever. You will get back up, you will kick butt and maybe even end up on the cover of Women’s Fitness.”

we next month’s issue as t ou ck he C … ed n Stay tu reveal our ‘Search for a Cover Star’ winner! womensfitnessaustralia







TO HEALTHY Speedy ways to boost your bod, coming right up

30 SECONDS… SMILE like you mean it People with bigger smiles live longer. True story – a study published in Psychological Science found that sombre-looking folks kicked the bucket way earlier than those sporting cheesy grins. Don’t feel like flashing your pearly whites? Fake it till you make it. A smile (even a forced one) can lower your heart rate, boost happy vibes and reduce stress, which safeguards your overall health. YAWN Yep, just let it out. Yawning is your brain trying to regulate its internal temperature, so once you do it, you’ll feel more alert and provide your mind and bod with a vital hit of oxygen. CUDDLE UP Hugging somebody you know and trust can help to lower your blood pressure, boost your memory and bolster your immune system. Seriously. In a study, US researchers found that people were less likely to come down with the common cold if they hugged someone before being exposed to the virus. 34

5 MINUTES… LISTEN TO MUSIC Keep pumping that Katy Perry – a review by Canadian researchers found that listening to music can up your body’s immune response, which can better protect you from infection. On top of their bacteria-fighting skills, your fave tunes can also help to decrease stress (something we know is bad news, upping your risk of heart woes and chronic disease). GO FOR A RUN Guys, US researchers say that running for five minutes a day can reduce your mortality rate by up to 45 per cent. Nope, that wasn’t a typo – only five minutes. And you don’t even have to sprint – a jog will do the trick. Day = made. LAUGH OUT LOUD Head over to YouTube and watch as many funny cat videos as you want. Laughter can instantly zap stress, boost your immune system and increase blood flow, which spells good news for your heart health. JUMP FOR JOY A US study found that women who jump in the air 10 times twice a day experience an increase in bone mineral density. Rest for 30 seconds after each jump (or just break out the skipping rope) and you’ll be on your way to stronger bones. STRETCH Take a five-minute time-out and move your body through a series of stretches. It’ll get your blood flowing (see ya, sluggish feels!), loosen your muscles to reduce your risk of injury and even release a hit of dopamine to improve your mood.




WHAT’S SOMETHING WE ALL WANT BUT NEVER SEEM TO HAVE ENOUGH OF? Ding, ding, ding, that’d be time, and coming in a close second would probs be health. Since the road to wellness can seem way, way, way too long, we thought we’d give you a list of fastacting fitness hacks that take less than 60 minutes. Ready, set, health!




SUMMER WELLNESS 15 MINUTES… MIND YOUR MOUTH If you want to beat gum disease and keep your ticker in good nick, dedicate time to brushing your teeth, flossing and scraping your tongue every morning and night. Some studies show that poor oral health may be linked to heart disease, so nix nasty bacteria before it can do any damage. WALK TO WORK On the days you’re not running late, jump off the bus or train a few stops earlier. You’ll sneak in some extra cardio, which helps quash stress, keeps your ticker happy, makes you more resilient to germs and helps combat fatigue. HIT THE STEAM ROOM Book in for that spa date. Studies show a stint in the sauna can improve your circulation, balance cholesterol and up your heart health. Oh, and according to Finnish researchers, steam sessions might help you live longer, too.

30 MINUTES… SCORE SOME ZZZS Fancy shrinking your waistline and your risk of chronic disease? Hit the pillow half an hour ahead of schedule. US scientists say night owls are more at risk of weight gain, unhealthy food habits and respiratory infections, so start scaling back on those late nights. GET SWEATY Don’t have a spare two hours to spend on the tready? You don’t need them. Smash a 30-minute HIIT session and you’ll improve your insulin resistance (which lowers your risk of type 2 diabetes), torch excess kilojoules, up your strength and improve your blood flow. CLEAN YOUR SHEETS Toss your doona cover in the washing machine for a health boost. Every time you crawl into bed, you spread a bucketload of bacteria through your sheets, which can increase your risk of skin infections – and that’s not even counting the resident dust mites that can aggravate allergies and cause coughing and rashes. Do your bod a favour and strip your sheets at least once a fortnight.

Fast food Get fighting fit with these tasty snacks Watermelon Your favourite emoji – oops, we mean fruit – can lower your blood pressure and nix post-workout soreness.



Capsicum Nosh on this brightly-coloured veg and you could slash your risk of developing Parkinson’s disease.


Sardines These salty fish can keep your ticker beating steady and improve the health of your blood vessels.




YOUR emotional FIRST AID KIT When life knocks you around, these expert-approved responses will help you start healing, fast



SUMMER WELLNESS GUIDE IF YOU’VE EVER HAD A BROKEN HEART you’ll know that it can hit you as hard as a physical blow. The same goes for emotional upsets such as failure, worry and loneliness. The thing is, you know what to do when you’ve cut your hand or broken a bone – so why is it that you ignore your feelings when you’ve been hurt? “I think we still attach more stigma to psychological than physical pain,” says WF psychologist Dr Lissa Johnson. “While we accept that our bodies suffer after a physical blow, we can be less forgiving of our psyches, inferring that there is something wrong with us when we suffer psychologically.” Think of it like this – in the same way that administering first aid is crucial to fast healing when you suffer physical injuries, implementing healthy emotional strategies when you’ve been psychologically knocked will mean you’re more likely to bounce back quickly. Plus, notes clinical psychologist Gemille Cribb (equilibriumpsychology., leaving your emotional wounds to simmer can lead to a heap of uncomfy bodily symptoms, too. “People who ignore their emotions can often experience physical side effects such as pain, sleep disturbance, headaches and gut issues,” she says. If you have no clue how to care for your wounded feels, we’ve got a kit of strategies to guide your next emotional triage.

THE AILMENT: Rejection


This wound is a biggie – from heartbreak to friendship bust-ups to career setbacks, it can hurt in so many ways, but the response is often the same. We turn the finger of blame on ourselves, and boy, do we come down hard. “A common response is to make what psychologists call ‘global’ and ‘stable’ negative attributions. This involves generalising from one hurtful experience to all of our life, our self and our future,” explains Dr Johnson. “An example would be telling ourselves that ‘no one will ever love me’, or ‘I’m defective’.”


It doesn’t take a genius to work out that this kind of nasty self-talk is no good for the healing process. In fact, “It’s the psychological equivalent of picking at a scab until it becomes a festering, infected sore,” says Dr Johnson. Yikes. Heal it: Instead of making your wound deeper with a painful internal monologue, try soothing rejection with gratitude. “Take the opportunity to savour and appreciate those who do appreciate you, perhaps valuing afresh people and things you have been taking for granted,” tips Dr Johnson. Reeling from a break-up? Try writing down three or four reasons you’re grateful for the relationship, whether it was learning life lessons or experiencing love. Missed out on a big promotion? Take a moment to appreciate what you love about your career overall. Studies show that gratitude exercises can lead to increased wellbeing and reduced depression, and the effects can stick around for months – so a little thankfulness now is the perfect Band-Aid.

THE AILMENT: Loneliness Maybe you’ve just moved to a new city or your BFF has a new boyfriend, leaving you at a loose end on weekends. Loneliness is the kind of wound that can sneak up on you, which makes it easy to ignore. And it tends to self-perpetuate – the longer you’re lonely, the less confident you’ll feel to address it. Instead, you withdraw even further, assuming people don’t want to know you, and interpreting old friends’ lack of contact as proof that you’re unlovable. Heal it: If you’re feeling down about a lack of company and friendship, it can help to reframe your perspective. Adopt an attitude of curiosity about life and yourself, suggests Dr Johnson. “You might take the opportunity to get to know yourself better, to enjoy your own company more or to explore your spirituality,” she says. Reaching out to friends might be an obvious solution, but if you’re feeling lonely

Stay wellthy Try these tricks daily to keep your mental health game strong Take a mini-break Devote a little time every day to “doing nothing but being in the moment,” tips Cribb. It could be as simple as drinking a cup of coffee or pausing to enjoy a beautiful view.

Find meaning Instead of making happiness your ultimate goal, “Pursuing meaning can foster a greater sense of fulfilment, and greater tolerance of hardship,” says Dr Johnson.

Get moving You know that a sweat sesh can be a great mood lifter, and Aussie researchers have found that people who exercise regularly experience higher levels of optimism.



you may be hesitant to speak up. Instead of asking for help, try giving it. Volunteering has been found to combat loneliness by improving social connections and boosting self-esteem. Visit to find opportunities in your local area.

THE AILMENT: Worry Life is all smoothies and sunshine, then, bam! A test result comes back abnormal, an unexpected bill arrives or a convo with your boss goes badly and your mind can’t stop turning it over. Worry can hit you like a brick and stay with you, disrupting your sleep, killing your mood and leaving you irritable and anxious as you imagine worstcase scenarios that may never eventuate. Heal it: When you’re dealt a worry bomb, try quieting your thoughts with mindfulness meditation. “Mindfulness is best for wounds that cause you to be in your head a lot,” says Cribb. To make a mindfulness bandage work for you, “Take the time to really feel into your physical experience of the emotion, non-judgementally,” suggests Cribb. “This involves noticing the worry and being aware of the thoughts that come up for you, aware that they’re thoughts, not ‘truths’.” If meditation isn’t your thing, yoga can act as a similar emotional tonic, helping you step back from your thoughts and into your body. Or, simply talk it out. “Talking to a friend or therapist who is good at listening, non-judgmentally and without giving advice, can be very beneficial,” says Cribb.

THE AILMENT: Failure Hands up if you’ve ever had an epic fail or three? Then you’ll know this kind of injury can leave some nasty (ego) bruises. You might feel angry, defensive or sad that life didn’t go as planned. Without care, a setback can leave you wallowing in resentment and it can dismantle your confidence as you hone in on all the mistakes you made. Heal it: Move on from failure by thinking big – big picture, that is. “Look at your life as a series of ups and downs,” says Cribb. “Remind yourself that these moments pass, and how you’ve grown from past upsets.” Then, instead of setting yourself another round of performance goals, “set learning goals,” adds Dr Johnson. “This can turn setbacks and failures into stepping stones rather than roadblocks.”

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In case you needed more convincing to get out there and catch some sweet summer rays, ďŹ nd out how light can boost your health, sleep, mood, energy and metabolism




SUMMER WELLNESS GUIDE SUNSHINE IS EVERYTHING. Not just because it means you can finally pull on those denim cut-offs you’ve been waiting months to wear, but because it plays a major role in how your bod operates. Get enough light at the right times and you’ll tap into a natural source of energy, set your system on a healthy sleep cycle and ensure you stay at your happy weight. How? It’s all about the way those rays interact with your body clock. Tucked away inside your brain is a tiny piece of tissue about 1.5mm long called the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN). This, friends, is your body’s master clock, which produces your circadian rhythm – aka, the 24-hour cycle that tells your body when to wake up, when to sleep, and when to signal to other ‘clocks’ in your organs to do their thang. And what it needs to stay in good working order is light. “Sunlight is critical in regulating our circadian rhythm because it’s what resets the body clock,” explains Professor Dorothy Bruck, a sleep psychologist with the Sleep Health Foundation. The SCN is located right where your optic nerves cross over, so it gets direct input of light via your eyes, says chronobiologist Dr Sean W Cain, a senior lecturer at the Monash Institute of Cognitive and Clinical Neurosciences. “No one’s clock is perfectly 24 hours so it needs to be reset and synchronised every day,” he says. “We evolved over millions of years with the sun resetting our clock every day – in the morning it speeds up our clock, and in the evening it slows down our clock and the net result is that we end up keeping 24-hour time.” Because your circadian rhythm triggers a range of functions in the body, keeping it in sync is a pretty big deal for your health. If it’s disrupted on a regular basis, you’re more likely to experience poor sleep, increase your risk of heart problems and stack on extra weight. Luckily, tapping the power of the sun to fine-tune your wellbeing is simple. Read on to learn how…

SUNNY SIDE UP When it comes to sunlight, it’s definitely a good idea to get it early. “One of the most important things you can do when you get up in the morning is get lots of light,” says Professor Bruck. “That’s going to suppress the hormone melatonin, which has made you sleepy during the night … that then allows melatonin to come up at a nice, reasonable time the following night.”


Not only will sunshine wake up your brain and get your systems prepped for the day ahead, it could help keep your body at a healthy weight. Research from Northwestern University in the US found that those who score the majority of their daily sunlight quota in the morning are more likely to have a lower BMI than those who wait till later in the day to get their dose. The scientists aren’t sure exactly what causes this effect on weight, but noted that light plays a role in regulating the appetite hormones leptin and ghrelin, as well as metabolism. Their prescription? Aim for 20 to 30 minutes of sunshine between 8am and midday. Just enough time for an outdoor workout, we say.

HAPPY DAYS Spend your days working or studying indoors? Try to shift your desk towards a window for a brighter mood and better health. A study in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine found that people who work in naturally well-lit spaces enjoyed longer and better sleep, were more active

EVENING GLOW So what happens when the sun goes down? The absence of light is just as crucial for wellbeing – problem is, modern lifestyle habits make it easy to mess up all the good work of our daytime exposure. Because your body uses light to determine the time of day, getting light at the wrong time, like at night when your system is cued to wind down, can throw the whole schedule off. “Humans’ circadian systems are highly sensitive to light – and it looks like women might be more sensitive than men,” says Dr Cain. “Even relatively dim indoor light can have a powerful effect on the clock. If you’ve got lights on in your house at night and you’ve got your phone on in bed, you’re essentially tricking your clock into thinking it’s still daytime.” That message results in suppressing melatonin, which you need to make you tired enough to fall asleep. Do this often enough – by staying up late every weekend, for example – and you could start seriously messing with your metabolism. “When someone’s schedule is really disrupted,

“Light is kind of a drug to us … It can be acutely alerting – you could go out and get some light and it will perk you up” and had a better quality of life than those working in windowless offices. Scientists have known for a while that natural light has an important role to play in mental health, as it increases levels of the ‘happy hormone’ serotonin. “Getting adequate amounts of daylight has a mood-enhancing effect,” confirms Professor Bruck. “And part of that story is not just getting sufficient daylight but sufficient length of daylight.” No wonder then that a recent survey by Philips Lighting found that 78 per cent of people feel more positive if they live in a light and bright environment, while 32 per cent can think more clearly when working with good lighting. If you’re stuck well out of reach of windows, make an effort to get outdoors at lunch or for a stroll. Your sunny break will come with (literal) perks: “Light is kind of a drug to us and it’s similar to caffeine in that it alerts us,” Dr Cain explains. “During the day there’s evidence that light can be acutely alerting – you could go out during the day and get some light and it will tend to perk you up.” Afternoon slump = sorted.



where there’s several hours difference and they are getting a lot of light at night, they end up having a much higher BMI,” explains Dr Cain. Disrupting the master clock also has a negative knock-on effect for the rest of your body, including raising your risk of heart problems. The fix? Dim the lights in your home at least two hours before you want to go to bed, and get serious about avoiding your smartphone, television or iPad (they all emit mega-disruptive blue light) before you hit the hay. Then work on finding your own regular sleep rhythm – head to bed at the same time each night and set your alarm to wake up at the same time every day (yep, even on Sunday), preferably early so you can take advantage of those powerful morning rays. “If you can keep a regular schedule that will be best for your health, your cognition, your metabolism, your sleep,” says Dr Cain. You’ll only need to do it for a week or two before it becomes natural, he adds. “Your body is really promoting the maintenance of that regular schedule,” he says. Now that’s light and easy. @womensfitnessau




Crystal POWER Take your beauty routine to the next level with these DIY crystal facial grids

THE CALMING MASK This grid will induce feelings of peace and wellbeing. Plus, Cohn says you could see a reduction in lines and wrinkles!

THE ENERGISING MASK Heavy, sleepy energy will turn into positive, vibrant energy. Cohn also believes you’ll see brightness in the skin, plus an improvement in circulation.

You’ll need: Blue lace agate near your hairline – fosters a sense of peace and tranquillity. ■ Amethyst between your brows – aids in relaxation. ■ Lepidolite either side of your nose – decreases stress, anxiety and depression. ■ Rose quartz on the groove of your upper lip and your chin – the most powerful stone for calming and soothing.

You’ll need: Ruby zoisite near your hairline – rejuvenates physical vitality and relieves lethargy. ■ Citrine between your brows – helps regenerate cells. ■ Amber either side of your nose – increases energy levels and feelings of positivity. ■ Carnelian on the groove of your upper lip and your chin – boosts stamina and energy.

How to do it: Stressed out? Try it two to three times a week. Otherwise, weekly is enough.

How to do it: Daily if you’re feeling fatigued, or just once a week for a pick-me-up.



By working these crystal masks into your skincare and selfcare regimens (all it takes is lying down and placing a combo of rocks on your facial hot spots for 15-20 minutes), Cohn says you can reap epic results on an emotional level, like bringing zen vibes or getting positive energy flowing, which will reflect in your skin. Now, before you get all DIY with these masks, it’s important to remember to recharge and cleanse your crystals before each sesh. “You can do this by washing them in sea salt water, placing them in the sunshine for at least 2-4 hours, bathing them in moonlight (especially when the moon is full), or surrounding them in smoke from a sage stick,” explains Cohn. Ready to get stoned?

THE CREATIVITY MASK According to Cohn, this grid will help clear any creative blocks and lack of motivation, and will give you a confidence boost. You might also notice a fresh clarity in your eyes.

THE CLEANSING MASK Get rid of toxins and neg vibes. “With use of this treatment, I notice an increase in clarity of the skin and mind, and less skin inflammation,” adds Cohn. You’ll need Seraphinite near your hairline – purifies the blood, organs, kidneys and liver. ■ Clear quartz between your brows – helps dispel toxins and restores energy. ■ Green tourmaline either side of your nose – restores balance and positive energy. ■ Ocean jasper on your chin – lifts your mood and helps regulate breathing. ■

You’ll need: ■ Purple iolite near your hairline – unlocks creativity. ■ Adamite between your brows – enhances joy and enthusiasm. ■ Garnet either side of your nose – encourages imagination. ■ Golden apatite on the groove of your upper lip and your chin – sparks clarity and confidence. How to do it: Once or twice a week. Or, if you’re working on a big creative project and need inspo, try it daily. @womensfitnessmag

How to do it: For general wellbeing, do it once a week.



WE ALL LOVE A GOOD SUMMER PAMPER SESH , and when it comes to giving our skin some love, face masks are usually top of the list (helloooo, girls’ night in!). But this facial is a little different – a crystal facial grid uses, you guessed it, crystals. And nope, they aren’t just pretty, colourful stones – these rocks can have loads of physical and emotional healing benefits. “Crystal facial grids are a powerful way to absorb and filter out unwanted energies,” says Meagan Cohn, founder of the Lotus Healing and Wellness Centre ( Just like your body, your face has key energetic points, and different stones have different abilities to heal, balance and re-harmonise energies.



Feeling flushed after realising you probs didn’t need to send that narky text to your friend? Think of something cold – or down a frosty bevvy. During a study published in the Journal of Consumer Psychology, researchers asked a bunch of volunteers to think about situations where they experienced regret and also asked them to make hypothetical stock investments. Afterwards, the group was treated to a selection of hot and cold drinks and shown advertisements for either a Caribbean summer vacay or an Alaskan arctic cruise. At the end, those who remembered feeling regretful or embarrassed reached for colder tipples (an act the pros reckon might help ‘cool off’ emotions), and those who had low returns on their stock trades felt less remorse if they viewed the winter cruise. Wishing you’d worn a different top to your job interview? Think cooler thoughts.


K N A BL E C A SP Fine-tune your journaling skills for the ultimate life hack


ThinkFIT IF YOU’RE A REGULAR TO OUR PAGES, you’ll know that putting pen to your own (diary) page is something we rate high on the radar of shiz-that’ll-changeyour-life. Life coaches, mindfulness pros and science all tell us that the art of writing is one of the best ways to grow personally (among other awesome benefits), and now author Katie Dalebout explores the powers of journaling, after discovering it during a dark time, in her book Let It Out ($21.99, Hay House). Read on for her top tips.

LET IT OUT TO… GET ORGANISED Reckon you’re Little Miss Procrastination? Journaling is a good way to get a handle on all the to-dos that overwhelm us. “We juggle so much, and sometimes getting it down on paper is the only way to know where to even begin to make a dent,” says Dalebout. It’s about discovering your ‘time leaks’ and patching these up until you’re using every second of your time in a healthy way. One of Dalebout’s tools, ‘The Prioritiser’, aims to help you proactively, rather than reactively, structure your day by identifying your MITs (Most Important Tasks). Before you go to bed, write down your top three MITs for the day ahead – the three things that you must accomplish in order to feel that the day has been a success. Draw a line and under that, list all your other tasks that are less important but should still be completed. “Make a commitment that for each task you complete off the bottom half of your list, you must complete an item from the top before moving on,” Dalebout advises.


LET IT OUT TO… FIND PRESENCE Being present could be the key to your happiness. “The constant search for the next ‘thing’ that will make us happy – but always seems to be just out of reach – means we’re missing life in the here and now,” explains mindfulness expert Veronica Winterbourne. A great way to bring yourself back to balance is to get a grip on your thoughts. It’s estimated we have more than 60,000 a day, yet as many as 98 per cent are the same few thoughts on repeat. Dalebout’s suggestion, ‘The Repeat Thought List’, aims to look deeply into our own thought processes. Set a timer to go off at random points throughout your day. Every time it goes off, record in your journal what you were thinking about (be honest!). At the end of the day, you’ll be able to see which thoughts were repeated and you might have a better understanding of why.

“Refocusing and bringing our attention to this moment means we don’t miss most of our lives,” says Winterbourne. Meditation and mindfulness coach Robert Brennan agrees: “Journaling forces people to address what’s happening now, how it feels, what matters, what went well, what didn’t.”

LET IT OUT TO… CREATE ABUNDANCE Journaling to create abundance is about shifting our thinking from a ‘lack’ mentality to an abundant one. “Today’s society is plagued not only by corporate marketing suggesting that everyone should be slim, beautiful, happy and successful, but also countless ‘friends’ on Facebook posting evidence of their wonderful lives, showing how well they are doing,” says Brennan. As a result, many of us lack a positive, abundant mindset. Dalebout’s ‘Texts From Yourself’ exercise targets this. Set an alarm on your phone daily that says: ‘Hey, how are you? How are you feeling?’ Then, answer these questions in your journal, expressing gratitude for the things that have gone well

LET IT OUT TO… FACE YOUR FEARS “Most fear is uncertainty in disguise, and to conquer our fears and reach new levels of success, we must move outside our comfort zone – right into the spot where uncertainty and fear set up camp,” says Dalebout. Through writing, you can channel these fears safely, opening yourself up to other feelings. Dalebout’s ‘Fear-Quashing Worksheet’ does just this. Start by finishing this sentence: “The fear that is stuck in my mind is...”. Define where this fear came from, explore how it makes you feel and write about it. Then, complete this sentence: “This fear is completely fake and does not actually exist, because...”. Not only is the process of putting these thoughts onto paper super therapeutic and beneficial – as writing them down forces you to become objective, allowing you to make sense of them – it’s also ace for your brain. “You’re creating new neural pathways by bringing your thoughts into the light of awareness and this will dissolve the intense charge they may hold,” Winterbourne adds.

“Journaling forces people to address what’s happening now, how it feels, what matters, what went well, what didn’t” and free-writing on the things that haven’t. “A deep sense of self-awareness, I have found, is one of the true keys to happiness and fulfilment,” adds Dalebout.

LET IT OUT TO… HEAL YOUR HEART Got emotional wounds that need healing? Dalebout’s technique, ‘The F-Word Throw Down’, zeroes in on forgiveness and how this can plague us if not addressed. “Holding on to resentment, whether toward yourself or others, only hurts you,” says Dalebout. She encourages us to firstly identify our resentments. Ask yourself: “What relationships or memories still cause me pain or sadness? Who am I unwilling to forgive?” Then, write, exploring why you’re still holding these resentments and how it would feel if you no longer had them. Next, create a list of compassion, identifying the ways in which those you resent – even if it’s yourself – are struggling or suffering and put yourself in their shoes. “Doing this heightens one’s sense of self by facilitating the process of getting to know and understand one’s own thoughts, values, feelings and emotions and to learn from them,” explains Brennan.



LET IT OUT TO… LIGHT THE DARK We all have thoughts, memories and hangups and for most of us, they’re sealed in a box in the back of our minds. Dalebout wants us to let them out. “This is invaluable in discovering and defining oneself,” agrees Brennan. “It’s about calmly acknowledging thoughts and emotions as they arise, with acceptance, and without judgement.” Dalebout’s tool, ‘The Hunt-For-LightIn-The-Dark’, encourages us to release our self-hate regularly, writing down our deepest emotions and thoughts in real time. The beauty of the journal? Honesty. “We are far more likely to write things that really matter and to be honest with ourselves in a journal, rather than spinning our lives out on a public forum and adding a rosy sheen,” explains Brennan. Even if these thoughts seem too dark to admit to another person, here, there are no restraints. By acknowledging their presence, you’re a step closer to releasing them. “Over time you’ll be able to pull more and more light out of you, illuminating your reasons to live and slowly diminishing the darkness clouding your life,” says Dalebout. We’ll raise our pens to that. @womensfitnessau


WINNERS &LOSERS Think life is one big contest? Read on to check yo’self and rein in that unhealthy competition


ThinkFIT YOU’LL PULL AN ALL-NIGHTER TO ONE-UP YOUR NEIGHBOUR IN CANDY CRUSH; you’ve never gotten over that time your grandma won Monopoly back in ’09 (you just got lucky, Carol); and that guy didn’t know you were racing him to the checkout line, but you beat him, so boom! Ringin’ any bells? Time for some hard truths: There’s a good chance you’re in possession of a competitive streak. And while there’s nothing like some friendly competition to help you smash a PB, life isn’t a race. Spend all of your time thinking it is, though, and you might find yourself on the next train to Burnout City. The remedy? Follow this cheat sheet to deal with out-of-control competitiveness.



Let’s get one thing straight: competition can be healthy. Plus, some things in life will always require you to best (or at least try to best) the person next to you. “Getting into a particular university degree, scoring a particular job or rising through the ranks of a particular industry often involve stiff competition,” explains WF’s resident psychologist Dr Lissa Johnson. “In order to achieve goals in these areas, a certain willingness to compete is necessary.” When faced with a challenge, your need to compete can help motivate you to try harder and make the most of your skills, which is great news for your selfdevelopment. As psychologist Dr Suzy Green ( points out, a competitive streak can help motivate you to go beyond what you thought you were capable of as it pushes you outside of your comfort zone. When competitiveness is healthy, it gives you the little nudge you need to grow and doesn’t cause your self-worth to hinge on winning, explains Dr Johnson. It’s when people begin to confuse their success with their identity that things turn sour.

THE DOWNSIDES While pulling out all the stops to outperform the other candidates in line for your dream gig is totally normal, constantly going above the call of duty to the point of physical and mental exhaustion isn’t a habit you want to keep. Since competing against others implicitly involves comparing yourself to them, you might never feel as though you’ve done enough. “Habitual competitiveness can cause you to feel jealous or resentful of other people’s success and make you intolerant of your own learning curves and failures,” explains Dr Johnson.

“Competitiveness can cause you to feel jealous of other people’s success and make you intolerant of your own failures” Constantly fighting to be the best can also affect your ability to live in the moment and enjoy everyday experiences, which can lead to problems with self-worth, motivation and overall happiness. On top of hurting your self-esteem, Dr Johnson says a need to win that’s based on ego rather than rising to the occasion can affect your relationships. For instance, you might think you’re kicking goals by being ruthless at work, but if you boost your self-esteem at someone else’s expense or alienate others unnecessarily, it’s setting you up as an adversary rather than an ally. A competitive-side-gone-wild doesn’t just affect your colleagues, either. “When we aren’t happy for our friends and their success, we can’t give positive feedback or encourage them to be the best they can be,” explains Dr Green – and isn’t that the whole point of a ride-or-die squad? As well as messing with your friendships, an out-of-control competitive streak can stop you from forming them altogether. “Competitiveness in relationships can interfere with getting close to people and enjoying their company,” says Dr Johnson. “You also run the risk of eliciting competitiveness from others in return, making you feel worse rather than better about yourself.”

RED FLAGS Have a hankering you’re too competitive? Consider taking action if you spot one or more of these telltale traits: 1 You’re jealous of other people’s achievements. 2 You feel joy when other people fail. 3 You can’t stand losing and always want to one-up someone. 4 You find it hard to stop and congratulate yourself or others. 5 You push yourself to achieve the top spot no matter the mental or physical costs. If you’re ticking all the boxes, don’t stress – there are ways to scale back your OTT competitiveness. To start, “Ask yourself what you’re trying to achieve by being competitive,” tips Dr Johnson. Is it a sense of value, admiration or love? And is your competitiveness working in these respects? Once you’ve established the pros and cons, pinpoint what you’ll gain by relaxing your competitive side and draw on these positives the next



time you’re urged to win. For example, if you find yourself wanting to judge or envy your newly-engaged pal, dig deep and share in her happiness instead of dwelling on the bad vibes. You’ll boost your own happy feels, and if you’re supportive rather than competitive, she’ll be more likely to celebrate your next milestone in return. According to Dr Johnson, you can also harness your competitiveness to find its antidotes. If you’re super-competitive, chances are cooperativeness, generosity, supportiveness and self-acceptance aren’t your strong suits, so use your inner drive to try and cultivate them. “Work on bettering your own achievements in these domains and, after a while, you’ll be able to surrender to your easy-going side.”

Friendly fire Dealing with your own competitiveness can be tricky, but trying to manage someone else’s is a whole other ball game. “If someone is constantly belittling your achievements or elevating themselves above you, they probably suffer from a competitive streak,” says Dr Johnson. Instead of letting their negativity get to you, flex your empathy muscle and recognise this behaviour for what it is – their struggle, not yours. Although it can be a tough ask, try not to play into their games. Instead, praise their achievements and be compassionate if they show vulnerability. Of course, sometimes taking it in your stride doesn’t work, so if you’ve reached tipping point, Dr Green says to pencil in a one-on-one. “Have a conversation about the toll their competitiveness is taking. If you don’t feel comfortable saying anything, learn to accept the person for who they are and try to see it as a humorous character trait.”




MONTH OF mantras Looking for some daily inspo? These mini motivational hits will do the trick. Cut them out and stick them around your home or work 2


Sweat, SMILE and repeat 6



Walk with a purpose 11

Don’t be busy, BE PRODUCTIVE



Expect nothing and appreciate everything


26 One of the greatest feelings in life is realising that two weeks ago, your body couldn’t do what it just did


not a chore



Always choose to be optimistic 20

You are brave for trying 24



You never lose – either you win or you learn






Do what they think you can’t do


You can change the world, girl

Every morning is a fresh start


If it doesn’t challenge you it doesn’t change you

Positive mind = positive life 10

What you do today is creating your future


Well, why not?




Exercise is a blessing

Seek magic every day






No matter how slow you go, you are still lapping everybody on the couch







oves on Instagram to show Fl #W g ta sh ha e th se U ! Spread the love around us all the different ways you’ve gotten creative with these little messages. 48






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You’ve got your warm-up of leg swings and walking lunges down to a fine art, but what about your top half? Well, if you’re gearing up for a tennis match or killer pump sesh, Aussie researchers have a hot tip to help you max your pre-workout game plan. After investigating the effects of different upperbody warm-ups, scientists from the University of Sydney found that while static stretching can help boost flexibility, high-load dynamic moves (think push-ups, medicine ball throws and free weights) are the most effective when it comes to boosting your power and strength. If you need a little help crafting the perfect warm-up routine, download an app like Fitivity (from $7.99, iTunes and Google Play) and follow the guided sequences.



WORKOUT Flaunt your summer bod with confidence… and a fresh new workout approach

GOT GOALS THIS SUMMER? Add muscle maintenance to your list. “The more muscle you can build and maintain during your training, the more toned and defined your body will appear,” explains personal trainer Dan Price. The best way to do that? Pairing compound moves, which focus on working the bigger muscle groups in your body, with a total body circuit that gets your heart rate up, lungs working and sweat dripping. Enter phase one and phase two of the following workout, which deliver this respectively. Price recommends you smash it out two to four times a week, giving yourself at least one day of recovery between each session. Use a weight that’s challenging but manageable – as you get stronger over the weeks you can start to up the power! HOW TO DO IT:  ■ Phase one: 3 x 10 reps of each exercise with a 90-second rest between each. ■ Phase two: Perform each move for 30 seconds. Beginners should take 30 seconds’ rest between each move, intermediate 10 seconds and advanced no rest. Each level should take a one-minute recovery after each circuit. Compete three or four sets in total. YOU’LL NEED:  2 x dumbbells, barbell, step or bench, kettlebell


BeFIT Focus on pushing your knees out as you drive up – don’t allow them to cave in



Technique ■ From a standing position, take hold of a barbell with an overhand grip, shoulder-width apart. Allow the bar to hang and rest against your thighs. ■ Push your hips backwards allowing the bar to travel down past your knees while remaining close to your legs.

Your spine should remain neutral as you hinge forward until your upper body is parallel to the floor. ■ At the bottom of the move squeeze your bottom and pull back up to an upright position, driving your hips forward into the bar – keeping tension in your bottom throughout.

Keep your weig ht distributed evenly over both feet


GREAT FOR: FRONT THIGHS, BOTTOM, CORE bottom position, focus on Technique ■ Stand with your feet keeping your torso as upright as possible by keeping your shoulder-width apart, and chest up and core tight. take a kettlebell, holding it ■ When your hips are slightly by the handle at your chest. ■ With your core engaged lower than your knees, squeeze through your bottom and and chest high, push your drive through your heels to hips back and your knees out. return to the start position. As you squat down into the


4 DUMBBELL OVERHEAD PRESS GREAT FOR: SHOULDERS, REAR UPPER ARMS ■ Engage your core and press Technique ■ Stand up tall, holding a the weights overhead until your arms are fully extended. pair of dumbbells at shoulder ■ With control, lower the height, palms facing each other. Your elbows should be dumbbells back to shoulder tucked close to your body and height before moving straight directly under the dumbbells. into another rep.

Bring the weig hts all the way down to your shoulders for full range of motion


GREAT FOR: UPPER BACK, UPPER ARMS, CORE Technique just below knee height. ■ Holding a barbell with Pull the bar up in a straight line towards your belly both hands, hinge forward at button, tucking your elbows your hips so that your spine in close to your body. is neutral and parallel to the ■ Extend at the elbows ground and knees slightly bent with hips pushed back. to return the bar to the ■ With your arms extended, bottom position before starting the next rep. the barbell should be resting





A strong core will keep your body stable as you row



GREAT FOR: BOTTOM, FRONT THIGHS Technique raise your right leg up past ■ Stand with your right foot your standing left leg until it reaches chest height. Focus on the ground and your left on squeezing your bottom foot on a bench or step. With and engaging your core. your arms by your sides, hold ■ Step back down from the a dumbbell in each hand. ■ Driving through the heel bench, leading with your right leg. Repeat on the of your left foot, step up onto other side. the bench until your left leg is fully extended. ■ Bending your right knee,


GREAT FOR: CORE, UPPER BACK, UPPER ARMS through your upper back as Technique ■ Start in a high plank you row the right dumbbell up to your right side. position, with each of your ■ Return the weight back hands on a dumbbell, shoulder-width apart, down to the start position so palms facing each other. both dumbbells are on the ■ Keeping your core tight floor before performing another rep with your with your torso, hips and legs opposite arm. all in a straight line, squeeze

Keep your posture uprig ht throug hout

PHASE TWO: TOTAL BODY CIRCUIT Your elbows should track backwards and close to your body rather than splaying out

Your spine should remain neutral and uprig ht – resist the temptation to let your shoulders hunch forward

3 WALKING DUMBBELL LUNGE GREAT FOR: FRONT THIGHS, BOTTOM ■ Drive through the heel Technique ■ Stand holding a dumbbell of your front foot and extend both knees. in each hand by your sides. ■ Stride forward, bending ■ Step forward with your your knees to 90 degrees to back foot, this time lunging drop your hips until your back on the opposite leg for the knee nearly touches the floor. next rep. Repeat fluidly. 54



GREAT FOR: CHEST, REAR UPPER ARMS, CORE Technique and spine neutral throughout, ■ Start in a high plank position bend at your elbows to lower your chest to the bench. with your hands on a bench or ■ Push back up until your arms step, core muscles switched on. ■ Keeping your tummy tight are fully extended again. @womensfitnessmag



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SET REALISTIC GOALS Setting an unrealistic goal is a sure-fire path to disappointment. Make your training and nutrition manageable – you’ll be surprised how quickly it becomes routine.

ENJOY YOUR TRAINING While there are advantages to certain styles of training, it’s often the case that the exercise you enjoy will get you the best results. Choose training that you love!



PLATE UP PROTEIN Adequate protein consumption is key to helping you keep that muscle tone and definition while ditching unwanted body fat at the same time.



Primed to LIFT Do your strength routine a solid with this 10-minute warm-up

SPEEDING THROUGH YOUR PRE-LIFTING WARM-UP? Hold it right there, girl! According to strength and conditioning coach Dan Lawrence, a mobility warm-up could do more for your results than you think. “Mobility is key because having a good range of motion helps you to execute movements safely and optimally,” explains Lawrence. “If you carry out an exercise under load but your body can’t get into the correct position, it will seek a compensatory movement pattern to get there.” Not only can this cause imbalance in the body – increasing your risk of injury – it also means you’re not getting what you want out of the exercise. Shifting focus to mobility can boost your performance. “Mobility work will fire up your central nervous system and, by getting your heart rate up prior to lifting, you’ll put your body under less initial stress,” tips Lawrence. Don’t wait to get injured before you take notice of your body’s weak and tight spots. Doing this sequence before you lift will increase your range of motion, so you’ll be able to nail positions that weren’t possible before. “Mobility should be proactive, not reactive!” says Lawrence.


WHY? To warm up and dynamically stretch your hip extensors and flexors, adductors and abductors, which get tight from sitting Technique increasing the range of motion ■ Stand with your feet shoulder-width after the first few repetitions. ■ Then do the same movement apart, holding a wall with one hand. ■ Once you are stable, swing one leg laterally, swinging your leg in front of your body and out to the side. forwards and backwards, gradually

Try not to control the movement too much – let your leg swing as far as is comfortable

HOW TO DO IT: Set aside 10 minutes before you train to go through these exercises. Spend more time on areas that are problematic to you and moves that apply to the workout you’re about to do.

Don’t overarch your lower back as you drive your arms up




WHY? To prepare your glutes, quads and hips for lower-body lifts, and to mobilise your hip flexors Technique ■ Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. ■ Step forward into a lunge, bringing both knees to a 90-degree angle until your back knee hovers just above the floor. Focus on a clean landing and good foot position. ■ As you move down, drive your arms up straight above your head to open your hips. ■ Drive back up to the start position, before changing legs for the next rep.




BeFIT AND THORACIC ROTATION 3 LUNGE WHY? To prepare your hips, glutes and quads while improving mobility in your thoracic spine (upper-middle back area) Technique ■ Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. ■ Step forward into a lunge with your left leg, your right knee hovering just above the floor. Using your left hand to apply a small amount of force just above your knee, open your right arm to the ceiling, rotating your chest and following it with your eyes. ■ Stand back up by bringing your back foot forwards to meet the front, before repeating on the opposite side.


Over the weeks, slowly increase the distance your toe is from the wall as your knee comes forwards


Turning your head to look up at your hand helps unlock g reater thoracic rotation

WHY? To raise your core temperature and open up your anterior chain (hips and quads) Technique right hand while extending ■ Stand with your feet your left arm into the air and pushing your hips forward. shoulder-width apart. ■ Reach backward to grab ■ Pause, then repeat on your right ankle with your the opposite side.


Focus on pushing your hips forward

WHY? If your ankle mobility is restricted, this will affect your squat technique ■ Keep your heels on the floor Technique ■ Stand facing a wall, with and push your knees towards the wall without allowing the your feet at least 10cm arches of your feet to collapse. away from the wall.


Keep your chest up and shoulders back as you lower

WHY? To test proprioception (your spatial sense of your body) while also preparing your glutes in the frontal plane, and to work through restrictive issues in your adductors Technique ■ Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. ■ Step as wide as possible to the side, keeping both feet flat on the ground, one leg bent and the other fully extended. Bend as deep as you can comfortably, then gradually increase your range of motion as you get used to the move. ■ Drive back up, bringing the extended leg up to balance on your lead leg. Hold for one to two seconds. Repeat all reps on one side before switching to the other side.







WHY? Most people feel restricted in the bottom position of a squat, so this exercise improves thoracic mobility while preparing your hamstrings and glutes on maintaining thoracic extension. bending your knees slightly. Technique ■ Stand with your feet shoulder-width ■ Shoot your bottom toward the floor ■ Hold this position for as long as apart. Hinge at your hips to bend forward, and make sure your arms stay inside necessary, then release one hand and keeping your legs as straight as possible. of your knees while your hands are extend it to the ceiling, rotating your chest ■ Wrap your fingers under your toes. still wrapped under your toes. Drive and following your arm with your eyes. ■ Lower your arm and bring your fingers your knees out with pressure from But if you can’t get to this position while both arms. You should now be in the keeping your legs straight, go as far back under your toes. Repeat the bottom position of a squat. Focus as you can with straight legs before thoracic twist on the opposite side.

Remember: a good squat is a deep squat that’s performed correctly

WHY? This move lengthens tight hamstrings, targets your chest, triceps, shoulders, hamstrings and core, while focusing on working your core through an anti-rotational plane of motion Technique rotate to extend your right arm upward. ■ Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. ■ Come back into the high plank. ■ Place your hands on the floor in front of ■ Taking small steps with your legs straight, your feet then walk them forwards until shuffle your feet up to meet your hands. ■ Walk your hands forwards again to move you’re in a high plank position. ■ Bend your arms to lower your chest straight into the next rep, performing the rotation on the opposite side. towards the ground. As you push back up,

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Keep your core braced throug hout to prevent your hips from dropping lower than the rest of your body or over-rotating


WO M E N ’ S F IT N E S S promotion


AVOID C ARBS? TH E TE S T A form of genetic profiling, the Fitgenes Carb Choice test uses a swab of your cheek cells to assess your levels of the AMY1 gene (a gene that produces the carbprocessing enzyme, amylase), to determine how well your bod metabolises carbohydrates.

H OW DO E S IT WO R K ? By analysing the amount of amylase in your saliva, the Carb Choice test can determine if your body’s able to break down starch effectively (as in, you don’t get digestive troubles every time you nosh on sweet potato chips), or if your tum’s crying out for low-carb, fibre-rich foods. The

lower your AMY1 score, the harder your bod has to work to digest starch (which can signal gut issues), while a higher score indicates you’re better able to deal with carbs (but may encounter dental woes thanks to high levels of amylase in your saliva).

W H O ’ S IT FO R ? If you’re struggling to shift weight, suffer from food sensitivities or want a closer look at your obesity and diabetes risk, the Carb Choice test can help point you in the right direction. Just starting out on your wellness journey? Thanks to its personalised health advice, the test will have you on the right path from the get-go.

WE TRIED IT! “I’ve always had a sneaking suspicion that my body doesn’t like carbs as much as my tastebuds do, so it was interesting – albeit unsurprising – that the Carb Choice test confirmed it. In fact, I discovered I fall into the worst category with a low AMY1 score of 3, meaning I don’t produce enough amylase and my system lacks the ability to break down starchy carbs. Bad news for my love of hot chips! My Fitgenes practitioner, Miles Browning, did note, though, that I shouldn’t stress too much – so long as I get it right 80 per cent of the time I have 20 per cent leeway to eat pizza every so often (yay!). He also suggested I hit up a protein-packed brekkie over a carby one as my amylase is really low in the AM. While the overall objective for me is to reduce carbohydrate concentration, Miles also recommended that I become a mindful eater – as in, it’s super important for me to chew my food slowly to produce more saliva and increase the volume of amylase produced. It feels good to finally have some science behind my speculations!” Samera, WF editor

LET’S PLAY A WORD ASSOCIATION GAME: We say, beach, and you say… work? While most of us head to the seaside for a day of sun, sand and fun, for a special group of Aussies, a weekend by the water is a time to save lives. You know who we’re talking about – the girls and guys in red and yellow – and while you’ve probs seen them hanging out down by the shore, have you ever wondered what’s actually involved? Founded in NSW (in a bid to save the new wave of beach-goers who, uh, couldn’t swim) all the way back in 1907, Surf Life Saving Australia has rescued more than 630,000 people, and continues to save 35 swimmers every day. On top of that, its members do more than 100 preventative actions (like setting up those flags you keep swimming out of) every single hour. It’s hella impressive, but here’s the real kicker: lifesavers don’t get paid. It might take $81,000 to fund a patrol, but those dollars are put into safety equipment and running the local club. Yep, they’re risking their life for free – but as three of them are about to tell you, it’s all totally worth it.

To the RESCUE Want to know what it takes to be a surf lifesaver? Let these three Aussie heroes fill you in






The full-timer As the community awareness presenter for Surf Life Saving Queensland, Kristy Mitchell, 20, does more than just rescues “It takes a special person to be a lifesaver. It’s volunteer work, so you don’t get paid like the weekday lifeguards and you have to give up your weekend to sit on the beach and watch everyone else – but I like helping people, I like being part of a team and giving back to the community. Surf Life Saving is like a second family. I started Nippers when I was four and a half so I’ve been involved in the surf community for 16 years. I’m now the vice patrol captain of the Burleigh Heads Mowbray Park Surf Life Saving Club on the Gold Coast, and I also work for Surf Life Saving Queensland where I teach school kids and refugees about beach and water safety. I really love what I do. You’ve got to be switched on all day, scanning the water and making sure nobody’s in trouble, so it is draining, but it’s also good fun. It’s pretty good to be at the beach every day. When I volunteer on the weekend, I’ll go down to the beach with my team, set up the flags, get all the equipment ready, grab petrol for the boat and start patrol at 8am. We do a lot of preventative actions, such as making sure people are between the flags and making sure they’re not going out too far. We’d rather do that than wait until someone’s in a heap of trouble, and thanks to the rescue equipment purchased through public fundraising, we haven’t had a major situation on our beach yet. The donations help out with everything from our uniforms, jet skis, rescue boards, tubes and the helicopter. Last year, as part of the Summer Surf Girl competition, I raised more than $230,000 for Surf Life Saving Queensland and that went straight towards rescue gear. We couldn’t patrol the beaches without that equipment or the public support. There are days when I have to pull someone out of the water, though, and it’s a bit confronting. We’re trained to know what we’re doing, so I’m more anxious to get to the person than nervous. I can’t hesitate – I have to choose the equipment that’ll get me there before it’s too late. The whole ride out I think, ‘Are they going to go under?’ and my heart’s racing, but once I get the person back to shore and they realise they’re okay, it’s a massive relief. It’s a really emotional journey. Depending on the situation, a rescue can take a fair while to get over. It does stay on your mind – I always wonder if there’s something I could have done better and I put a lot of pressure on myself because I’ve had the training and don’t want to stuff up, but at the end of the day, as long as the person’s okay I can move forward. There’s always more training I can do so I don’t have a situation like that again. Lifesaving is constantly challenging, but it’s all worth it. I love what I do and I hope I’ll be lifesaving on weekends for the rest of my life. It’s pretty special to go home at the end of the day knowing you saved someone’s life.”





The fast learner When she’s not studying at university, Emily Mellor, 22, patrols one of Australia’s most infamous beaches “I’m finishing off my international studies degree in Melbourne, but on weekends I commute down to Portsea and stay with my grandma so I can volunteer at the beach. When I was younger I sailed competitively in my school holidays, but when I was 14 I completed my Surf Rescue Certificate and went on to complete a Surf Life Saving Bronze Medallion so I could patrol. I loved the beach, was really into fitness and exercise as well as the community, so it made sense. With lifesaving, you can help others when they’re having the worst time, and Portsea Back Beach, where I patrol, can be quite dangerous. There are a lot of rips and a big surf, so it’s a beach where a lot happens and you get people, like surfers, hurting themselves. Often swimmers are pulled into a rip by the current and sucked out the back, so if we see them drifting, we’ll check on them before anything bad happens. As a classic example of how quickly things can escalate, one day we had a really big surf and quite a few people got sucked out at the same time – someone broke their leg from the force of the waves! Sometimes swimmers are picked up by a wave and dumped onto a sandbank, so we have a lot of spinal injuries, too. We also get jellyfish stings and missing children, so it ranges from small first aid tasks to big rescues and resuscitations. Lifesaving has exposed me to things I wouldn’t have seen otherwise, but I’ve had the best training to be able to deal with them. It’s a good feeling knowing that when people really need you, you can be there for them and help prevent tragedies from happening. I definitely get nervous, but when I do, I just take a deep breath and think about what’s happening and what I need to focus on. You can always up-skill and learn how to deal with specific scenarios as well. I’ve got my Gold Medallion, which means I can do paid lifeguard work, and you can also learn how to teach and assess others once you’ve got those qualifications. Every year you have to re-qualify and learn the new updates, and my club does scenario-based training, too, which makes me more equipped to take the lead. I also teach the younger members of our club how to manage emergency situations and prepare them for what could go wrong – that’s pretty rewarding. After I complete my studies, I plan to keep volunteering. It’s such an important part of my life and I can’t see myself not being involved in some capacity. This year I’ll be on the club’s operational committee, which means I’ll help with the training and development of lifesavers. It would be amazing if I could be a mentor for future lifesavers because lifesaving is so much more than putting on a uniform and standing on a beach. We’re there to keep you safe.”




The high flyer Environmental field officer, Tara Smith, 25, spends her weekends watching the surf from the sky “You can see so much from above. As one of the rescue swimmers for the Westpac Life Saver Helicopter in Perth, I look down at the water for anything or anyone who may not look right. If there’s someone swimming by themselves quite far out, we might take a closer look. Sometimes we’re asked by the lifesavers on the beach to do a search or check something out, so it’s usually a busy 10-hour shift. I’m lucky I volunteer with an awesome bunch of people. I’ve got a great circle of friends. I don’t volunteer every weekend as I have uni and work, but usually I do two full days a month on the helicopter. You obviously have to be a good swimmer to be a lifesaver, especially if you’re on the heli crew as we’re trained to jump out of the aircraft. I grew up on the beach and swam competitively, so I had a good starting point and my mum did lifesaving and encouraged me to get into it when I was just five years old. It’s wonderful to have the skills to be able to step in and save someone’s life. When I’m in the helicopter, I’m in my wetsuit so I’m ready to jump if I need to. I haven’t had to jump yet, which is good @womensfitnessau




With 131 clubs to fund across Australia and coastal drownings on the rise, support is something SLSA can never have enough of. Head to to make your life-saving donation.

because we’re a last resort. Last season we were flying over one of the main beaches and one of the lifesavers called us to help with the search of a missing child. They’d been searching for quite some time and the parents were pretty distraught, but we located the child quickly, so that was a real highlight. You put a lot of time into your training, so it’s lovely when things go to plan and you have a good outcome. I had a trickier situation a few years ago while patrolling down at the beach on a really cold and windy day. The surf was really big and we needed to rescue a group of kayakers, and at one point our boat’s engine cut out from the waves that were hitting us. We were very lucky we didn’t flip. In those situations you have to keep things under control and keep yourself safe because if you get into trouble, you’re useless and can’t help. You have to take a step back and think. I don’t get nervous with rescues, though, because I’m trained to know what I’m doing, but I do feel for the victim. Monday to Friday, I work as an environmental field officer, so that’s quite different to lifesaving, but I guess I put myself in this situation because it’s what I’ve always done. I’ve even rescued people on my weekend surfs because I’m always looking. It’s just ingrained in me, and I don’t have any plans to stop.”







Brush up on bike maintenance 101 now so yo

GOING FOR A SPIN SEEMS LIKE AN AWESOME IDEA when all you have to worry about is a little saddle soreness here and there and whether or not your helmet is sitting cute. That is… until tyre punctures and slipped chains get your head spinning instead. That’s why you need to get your bike-maintenance skills up to scratch. It’s easier than you think.

I J ! au


t when



Although a flat or punctured tyre is probably the most common problem, everyone struggles with fixing it. The good thing about knowing how to fix a flat is that, not only does it save you cash if you don’t have to pay someone else to do it, but you can get it done right where you are with zero fuss. “If you’ve never had to do a roadside repair before, it can feel daunting, especially if it’s cold and raining,” says Rebecca Charlton, author of Get On Your Bike. “Many women admit they’re not too sure what to do with their puncture repair kit.”

Carry two spare tubes, tyre levers and a mini pump. This means you can switch the tyre for a new one and fix the old one later. ■ Click the gears down the rear cassette to get the chain on the smallest sprocket – this will make it easier to put the wheel in. ■ Release your brakes so you can get the wheel out and check the tyre for the cause of the puncture – or you’ll cycle off only to get another one five minutes later! But avoid running your hand around the inside of the tyre in case of broken glass. ■ Check the tube is not sticking out from the side of the tyre before re-inflating or you could experience a pinch puncture.

MAINTENANCE MUST-HAVES Part with a little cash, so you can pedal on the roads worry-free

2 SERFAS ROAD STICK MINI PUMP Light enough to throw in your backpack, but strong enough to get you re-inflated and on your way. $34.99,

THE SLIPPED CHAIN Another common prob is dealing with a chain that has fallen off or gotten stuck. If this happens, the most important thing is not to panic. “You can actually flick the chain back onto the big chain ring at the front by pressing the left-hand gear lever and gently turning the crank forward,” explains Charlton. However, if the chain has actually jammed, you’ll need to get off the bike for a quick repair. 64


Stop pedalling and roll to a place you can safely stop – if you force the pedal stroke, you run the risk of snapping your chain. ■ Use your hands to put the chain back onto the chain ring at the front. ■ You may want to push the rear mech (by the rear end of the chain) forward to give some slack on the chain so you can pull it over the front chain ring easier.



3 PRO MINI RESIN BODY 10 FUNCTION TOOL Compact and lightweight, this multi-tool is handy to keep on you whenever you go for a ride. $19,



1 KMART DELUXE TUBE REPAIR KIT Don’t be caught without some self-adhesive patches and tyre levers to patch up a puncture. $5,



How to love your

summer runs Longer days, warmer temps, faster races – there’s so much to enjoy about summer running, it would be a crime not to do it

THE SUN’S OUT, SO GET YOUR LACES OUT! Not only is getting your run on in nature a good ol’ stress reliever, but just think about all that Vitamin D – aka the bone-, immunity- and mood-boosting vitamin your body synthesizes on exposure to UVB rays – you’ll be collecting as well. “Let’s face it, for most of us, it’s just easier to get out the door and run when the sun’s shining,” says motivation coach Evie Serventi. “Whether you’re new to exercise, restarting a lapsed habit or taking your training to new heights, now’s the perfect time to harness the motivational power of summer.” Get loved up here…




“With the mileage coming down, summer is a good time to address potential niggles or imbalances that could lead to injury,” says Weir. Head to the park or gym and work on your weak spots. “Single-leg work should be a priority. Strengthening and activating your glutes (especially the gluteus medius, which helps control the level of your hips) and working on your core would also be a good use of your time, as these are all areas that are notoriously weak in runners who only run. Start a routine in the summer and you’re more likely to keep it up in winter.” TEST IT: Get personalised advice on the best strength and conditioning workouts for you from a running coach or personal trainer, ask a fitness instructor at the gym to devise a program, or use WF’s workouts for inspiration.



There’s no denying it can be harder to get your runs in over winter. If you’re running alone, lack of daylight can rule out early morning or evening runs on safety grounds, while inclement weather can send even the hardiest runners indoors to the treadmill.

All that changes in summertime, though. “We’re guaranteed more hours of daylight during summer, regardless of the weather conditions,” says Serventi. “That means greater flexibility for runners – you can squeeze in runs before (or en route to) work, and later in the evenings. The extra hours of sunshine and daylight boost your mood, making it easier to get your vitamin D fix without roasting in the midday sun – and organising regular early morning/late evening runs tends to sharpen your time-management skills as you get used to slotting them into your day.” Let’s not forget that higher temps mean your muscles warm up faster, too (potentially reducing injury risk). TEST IT: Set your alarm early and head out for a 30-minute run before work, then see how it affects the rest of your day.



Some of us like to run off-road all year round, enjoying the mud, cold and wet of the winter cross-country season. If that’s you, you won’t need any persuading to try trail running. But if you’re more of a pavement pounder or tready fan, now’s the time to broaden your horizons. “Summer is a great time of year to hit the trails. They’re generally in better condition and less slippery than in winter,” explains running coach Karen Weir. Plan a course that uses well-marked tracks, and consider point-to-point routes with a train journey return, or a circular path from a café – that way you have something to look forward to on your return. “Leave your watch at home, forget about pace, take a pack with some basic equipment (water, snacks, sunscreen) and make a day of it,” Weir advises, adding that trail running is a pretty awesome training sesh. “The hills require strength and stamina, the uneven ground encourages more muscles to work to stabilise you, your core will get a great workout and, as you’ll probably be out for longer than a normal road-based run, you’ll be working your



aerobic endurance for longer, too.” TEST IT: For a calendar of short and

long trail run events around Aus, head to



Traditionally, winter is a time to work on your endurance, with runners often training for a spring half or full marathon. Summer’s the ideal time to work on your speed instead. Think short, sharp training sessions, with less mileage and more intensity – way more appealing than long slogs when the mercury rises. “You could get involved with a trackbased club and have a go at a summer season on the track,” suggests Weir. “Don’t be intimidated – you don’t need to be an elite athlete to take part. There are track meets appropriate to all different abilities and ages, but a few weeks of blasting out 800m sessions or having a go at the steeple chase will hone your top-end speed, build strength and power, and give you a whole new mental challenge.” If classic middle-distance track events seem too short, focus on improving your 5K or 10K PB. “Keep your long runs to no more than an hour and making other sessions about quality rather than quantity should see you get faster and stronger,” says Weir. “Include short intervals, long intervals and tempo running. Design yourself an eight-week program then test yourself with a Parkrun (parkrun. or a 5K or 10K road race.” TEST IT: “If you’re new to speed work, introduce interval sessions once a week,” says Weir. “A simple session such as 8 x 2 minutes hard to 1-minute rest is good. Make sure you warm up before the session and cool down afterwards. Then play around with durations of effort to rest, or add in more reps as you get stronger.”

Love this? Search for more like it on KEYWORDS: RUNNING SUMMER @womensfitnessau



(phone) workout Public service announcement: This will be the easiest exercise you do all summer


BeFIT NO MATTER WHERE YOU ARE IN THE WORLD, you’re only ever one click away from a good sweat sesh. But with so many vids in the world wide web, how do you know which ab blitz, super arms toner or relaxing yoga sequence to try?! Enter: Hoolio fitness app (free, iTunes). It curates the best exercise videos online and makes them easily accessible from one place – your phone! Whatever your fitness level, time constraints and goals, it’s got you covered… as does this simple, kit-free workout, whipped together by Hoolio trainer Rebecca Louise just for WF. HOW TO DO IT: Perform one set of each move. Once complete, go back to the start and repeat for the number of sets recommended.


GREAT FOR: BOTTOM, THIGHS Technique ■ Take a step forwards on one leg, then bend both legs to lower down. Allow your front leg to bend more than your back leg and lean your upper body forwards.

■ Push through your front heel as you straighten your legs to bring them back together, keeping your upper body forwards throughout. ■ Repeat for 12 reps on each leg.

Keep your chest up and don’t round your upper back

Startin g ou t ? 3 x se ts Need a challen ge? 4 x se ts Almost pr o ? 5 x se ts

2 ARM PULSE Need an extra challenge? Add lig ht dumbbells

GREAT FOR: SHOULDERS Technique ■ Stand tall with your feet together. Extend your arms out to the sides with your palms facing forwards and every muscle fully engaged. ■ Pulse your arms an inch or two forwards and backwards, keeping them straight throughout. ■ Repeat for 20 reps.


GREAT FOR: CHEST, REAR UPPER ARMS, CORE, SIDES the floor to bring your knee towards Technique ■ Start in a high plank position with your your elbow on the same side. ■ Push back up as you allow your hands slightly wider than your shoulders and your stomach muscles engaged. leg to return to the start position. ■ Bend your arms to lower your chest ■ Repeat for 10 reps, alternating towards the floor, lifting one leg off legs with each repetition.



This twist on the classic push-up will fire up your core and obliques




GREAT FOR: STOMACH, SIDES Technique ■ Lying on your back, roll both legs to one side, making sure your knees are touching.

Gently place your hands behind your head and look straight up. ■ Keep your lower body over to the side

as you crunch your shoulders up off the floor, squeezing your sides with every lift. ■ Repeat for 12 reps each side.


GREAT FOR: BOTTOM, INNER THIGHS, CORE leg, bring one knee out to the side as Technique high as possible without tilting your hips. ■ Start on your hands and knees, with your Switch on your core for balance. hands under your shoulders and knees directly under your hips. Keep your back ■ Lower your leg back down to the floor flat with your hips tucked under. before going straight into another rep. ■ Keeping the 90-degree angle in your ■ Do 20 reps on each side.

Perform all your reps on one leg , then switch



Keep your chest up and shoulders back throug hout


Technique ■ Take a wide ballet second position with your feet turned out and hands on your hips. Tuck your hips under.



■ Squat

down, keeping your back straight. up onto the balls of your feet. ■ Lower your heels and return to the start. Repeat for 12 reps. ■ Lift




GREAT FOR: THIGHS, BOTTOM Technique ■ Start standing, then take a step forwards and lift your opposite knee up as you jump.

■ Land

softly, bringing your foot back down and straight up into another rep, repeating for 10 reps.

Aim to get your knees up to waist heig ht



GREAT FOR: BOTTOM, THIGHS, CORE, SIDES Technique landing in another half squat but this ■ From standing, take your right leg behind time with your left leg behind your right. ■ Go into another rep, moving back and your left as you lower into a half squat. ■ Leap as far as you can to the right, forth with each. Repeat for 20 reps.

Digital editor Jacqui King turned her lounge room into a gym with ith this simple-but-sweaty sesh When it comes to my fitness routine, I like to keep it super simple. Circuits are my jam, the less gym equipment required the better, and if I can do a sesh without going further than my lounge room or the local park, then I’m in. So when I saw this workout, it was like the exercise gods were shining on me – it’s everything I could want (insert praise hands emoji here). Fave move: The plié squat! I got to (sorta) live out my ballerina dreams by getting up on my tippy toes. But FYI, doing that while squatting is hard work and requires flexibility and coordination – neither of which I seem to have. But I loved it anyway! Toughest part: THE FIRE HYDRANT. I’m saying it in caps because that’s how much it hurt. My butt was killing me, but I knew that with every move, I was getting closer to a behind like Kimmy K’s. Final verdict: Three rounds of this full-body circuit took me about 20 minutes, which is perfect – I can bust out this sesh in the morning before work or sneak it in before dinner with girlfriends. And I can do it all while watching Netflix. Win!

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Move quickly to get your heart rate up!








OF THE PROS Psst, WF’s expert panel have some of the good stuff to share… BLAKE WORRALLTHOMPSON, PT AND WELLNESS COACH

The best core workouts are exercises where the entire body is working as a unit, engaging the full core, which includes everything from your deep and superficial core and back muscles, and your hips right up to your shoulder girdle. All strength work is great, but I particularly love singlearm and leg exercises because they use your body’s natural sling systems and force you to stabilise using, you guessed it, your core! Try cable woodchops, single-arm cable press, single-arm dumbbell swings, single-leg deadlifts, kettlebell swings, lunges and other complex multi-joint exercises.

STEPH PREM, PILATES INSTRUCTOR Pilates is my secret weapon for core strength – the core is one of the most important parts of your body as it’s your centre of gravity and the link between your lower and upper body. For example, you can have the strongest legs, but with a weak core you won’t be able to perform a highloaded squat safely or effectively. Pilates targets the deep muscles of your core – the ones that are often neglected as most people focus on the external, visual core muscles to achieve a sixpack. That’s where Pilates gives you results, working your core from the inside out! But a hundred sit-ups won’t give you flat abs if your diet isn’t good. Great gut health and a clean diet are essential!


There are a number of tricks to this, but three big ones that I think are underrated are: Sit on a swiss ball at your desk to engage your core. Use a standing desk – these are becoming more popular because they’re extremely helpful in making sure you’re constantly using your core muscles and don’t get lazy. Start your workout with activation exercises. If you go to the gym, you’re likely to see people doing their core exercises last. That’s great, but it’s worth doing some of your core work at the start so you know your core is switched on for the session you’re about to do! It will make a big difference to your workout and your core muscles if you teach them to fire up before you start.

1 2



A golden ld rule l when h building core strength during yoga is to imagine that every movement starts at the very pit of the abdomen. It not only activates your core but makes all your movements more effortless.




H i a sixpack Having i k definitely d doesn’t mean you have a strong core. The rectus abdominis (aka the sixpack) is only one of a series of complex muscles (including abdominals, back muscles, muscles around the pelvis and the deeper muscles such as the multifidus, pelvic floor and diaphragm) that make up your core. Another really common misconception is that core strength and core stabilisation are the same. The difference is that core stabilisation equals no movement. So you need to do core-strengthening exercises, which are functional movement-based exercises, to have a strong foundation for core stabilisation. Having a strong core makes physical activities easier and decreases your chance of injury. The more functional your training and lifestyle activities are, the stronger your core will naturally be… so get up from your desk and move around during the day, walk to work, switch on your core while you’re vacuuming the house, or do a squat to pick up your child to naturally build up your core strength.




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ONLY BEEN SHOWING LOVE TO ONE TYPE OF EXERCISE? While it is rewarding to have a sport or gym class you’d give your left kidney for, your progress in that discipline will be limited if you’re not also training in others. Why? The more you practise the same thing, the better you become at it, without having to use as much energy as you needed before. Now, using less energy to work out might sound great, but, less work actually means less activation of your muscles and metabolism. “The body needs to be challenged continually in new ways – with cardio work, and in terms of flexibility, fluidity and strength – for it to carry on advancing,” explains yoga teacher Jessica Stewart. It makes total sense then that primal and HIIT workouts have risen the ranks – although they’re two different methods, both are designed to shake up the body, pushing it in new and different ways. Want more from your current sessions? Challenge (and support) your body by pairing your regular workout with a fresh, complementary style of movement. 74





When you’re a regular on two wheels, Pilates can help you find and activate the muscles you haven’t felt before when cycling. “Pilates is a great choice to help you improve your power, speed, coordination, balance and flexibility,” explains Pilates instructor Dawne Likhodedova. Not only will it strengthen those all-important core and leg muscles, Pilates will also increase your range of motion, helping to reduce any risk of injury that may be caused from repetitive strain. Likhodedova suggests Pilates moves that improve your alignment, muscle strength and upper-body stability. “Since cycling involves movement primarily on the sagittal plane (front/back movements), you’ll want to include exercises with rotation and side bending.” Train at: Physicore, Sydney The Lagree Fitness method has made its way to Aussie shores at Physicore’s three Sydneybased studios. A sweaty success in the US, this high-intensity, low-impact conditioning method delivers fast results and serious burn via the Pilates Megaformer machine. Working your slow-twitch muscles into overdrive, while maintaining a controlled pace, you can expect to develop and tone muscles you never even knew you had.



If you box, here’s something you probably didn’t expect: Yoga can work magic as a fitness add-on. “Boxing builds wonderful power and strength in the upper body, but can lead to a tightness in the neck and shoulders if not balanced out correctly,” says yoga instructor Chris Magee. “Yoga practice will help relieve the muscular tension, and realign your shoulders to help maintain good posture.” Time-poor? It’s worth substituting one of your training sessions for yoga instead, as stretching out your muscles won’t just help to prevent injury, it will also leave you feeling stronger and more prepared for your next date with the punching bag. Train at: Fitness First, nationally The Les Mills BodyBalance class (on offer at Fitness First gyms) combines yoga, Pilates and tai chi to challenge your strength and flexibility – and burn some serious kilojoules. You’ll leave feeling centred, stretched and balanced.




Whether you’re a 5K lunchtime warrior or a seasoned marathoner, you need to remember to strengthen more than just your legs. Runners are typically referred to yoga to help mobilise and alleviate pain in joints and muscles, but core work also promotes good running form and helps to avoid injuries on the pavement. A strong core (think your chest, back, abs and obliques) gives you a solid and stable foundation to move from. “Your torso is your powerhouse, so keep it strengthened to help drive your arms and legs when you run. Swap a couple of your regular weekly runs for some deep core conditioning,” advises fitness expert Lucy Wyndham-Read. Train at: Virgin Active, nationally Virgin Active’s Power Plate Core class focuses on challenging your core strength with the use of a vibrating platform (aka the Power Plate). Plus, it also enhances muscle tone and improves balance – all in a 30-minute ab-tastic class.


While the average HIIT class incorporates high-impact moves (hello, burpees and box jumps!) to push you, overdo them and you might end up stressing your joints. You could get your heart rate just as high by doing low-impact exercise (like hitting the rowing machine) without putting your body at risk. “Incorporating low-impact exercises can be easily achieved, allowing people of all fitness levels to reach their goals. If you have access to a gym, jump on a bike or rowing machine, pedal or row fast for brief bouts and take a recovery,” suggests trainer Matt Bolam. “Lift weights but shorten your recovery time. If you don’t have access to a gym, find a hill or some stairs and climb them briskly. Use closed-chain bodyweight exercises like squats and push-ups in an upper body/lower body format to get the heart rate elevated.” Train at: Fitness First, nationally Adding in some low-impact exercises doesn’t make your workout any less effective. Case in point: TRX training! A resistance workout using a strap suspension system is a sweet challenge for your bod, while also being easy on your joints. Score all the benefits with the Suspension Freestyle class at Fitness First.






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The 4-minute


HOW TO DO IT: Choose four exercises from this page, making sure they target your whole body. Perform each exercise for 20 seconds and take a 10-second rest between each move. When you’ve completed 20 seconds of each exercise once, do all four moves again. You should be working at the highest intensity you can manage during those 20-second blocks. YOU’LL NEED:  2 x dumbbells

Make sure your back knee is directly under your hip as you lunge


GREAT FOR: LEGS, BOTTOM ■ Push up onto the balls of your Technique ■ With one foot a large stride feet and jump to switch legs. ■ Land with both knees at 90 in front of the other, bend both legs to 90 degrees, so your back degrees, opposite foot in front. knee is just above the floor. Repeat fluidly, alternating legs.

GREAT FOR: STOMACH Technique rotate your upper body ■ Lie on the floor with your toward your right knee. ■ Return to the start, then knees bent at 90 degrees and your shoulders raised. bring your left knee and ■ Extend your left leg and right elbow together. Continue this movement bring your right knee and fluidly, alternating sides. left elbow together as you


GREAT FOR: CHEST, UPPER ARMS, UPPER BACK, CORE ■ Bend your arms to lower Technique floor, keeping your body ■ Start in plank, holding a your chest to the floor again, straight, then push back up. ■ Row one dumbbell up then push back up. dumbbell in each hand, directly ■ Row the other dumbbell up under your shoulders. to your side, then lower it ■ Lower your chest to the down to the floor again. to your side, then lower it.





Don’t let your hips drop down


GREAT FOR: LEGS, BOTTOM ■ From this squat position, Technique ■ Stand with your feet push through your legs to jump up as high as you can. hip-width apart. Bend at your ■ Land softly, with bent hips and knees to lower your bottom toward the floor, knees, and move straight pushing it back as you do so. into the next repetition.

A strong core will stop your back from arching

Power throug h your heels for an explosive jump


GREAT FOR: SHOULDERS, REAR UPPER ARMS straight up overhead. Technique ■ Stand with your feet ■ As you lower it back to hip-width apart, holding a your shoulder, push the dumbbell in each hand in other dumbbell overhead. ■ Repeat, alternating front of your shoulders. ■ Push one dumbbell arms continuously.

Keep your core eng aged as you jump your feet back


GREAT FOR: CORE, SHOULDERS ■ Without moving your Technique ■ Start in plank, resting on hips up or down, jump your feet apart. your forearms with your ■ Jump your feet back in feet together. Switch on your core to make sure your to the starting position and body is in a straight line. repeat the movement.


GREAT FOR: LEGS, BOTTOM, CORE, SHOULDERS ■ Jump both feet back Technique ■ Begin crouching, with your in to return to the crouch position, then jump up hands resting on the floor in as high as you can. front of you. Engage your core ■ Land softly, back in to the and jump your feet back into a strong plank position. crouch position. Repeat.


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The 7-minute


HOW TO DO IT : Perform each move for 30 seconds with a 10-second rest between each. Aim to do as many reps as you can in 30 seconds. Keep going for seven minutes in total. YOU’LL NEED:  Chair

The hig her the chair, the harder your leg s will work


GREAT FOR: BOTTOM, THIGHS ■ Keeping your back Technique ■ Stand with your feet straight, bend at your knees and hips to lower slightly wider than your your bottom as if you were hips, knees soft and toes sitting back in a chair. pointed slightly out. ■ Push back up to the start position and repeat.


GREAT FOR: BOTTOM, LEGS ■ Pause and then step off Technique ■ Stand in front of a chair. with the opposite foot first. ■ Step up onto the chair with ■ Repeat, changing sides one foot, followed by the other. with each repetition.


GREAT FOR: CHEST, REAR UPPER ARMS, CORE, SIDES ■ Push back up to the start. up toward the ceiling. Technique ■ Start in plank with your hands ■ At the top, rotate your body ■ Rotate back to plank. ■ Repeat, this time rotating to directly under your shoulders. into side-plank position with Bend your arms to lower your one arm on the ground and the opposite side. Continue to chest toward the floor. the other extending straight alternate sides with each rep.





Keep your elbows back to ensure you work your triceps


GREAT FOR: REAR UPPER ARMS Technique ■ Sit on a chair with the palms of your hands on the edge. ■ Slide your bottom off the seat and support your weight with your hands. ■ Bend your elbows and slowly lower your bottom toward the floor. ■ Push up to the start and repeat.




GREAT FOR: CORE, SIDES with your feet stacked Technique ■ Form a straight line on top of each other. ■ Hold for with your body on its side, resting on one forearm 30 seconds.

Technique Stand with your shoulders back and your chin up. ■ Take a large step forward with one foot. Bend both knees to a 90-degree angle, ■

This pose will challenge your balance

with your back knee just above the floor. ■ Push back up to the start position, then repeat on the opposite leg, alternating legs with each rep.

Make sure your front knee is above your ankle


GREAT FOR: BOTTOM, LEGS, CORE and jump as high as you can. Technique ■ Start standing tall with ■ As you jump, kick out your your feet together and arms legs and bring your arms up down by your sides. and out to form a ‘star’ shape. ■ Slightly bend your knees ■ Land softly and repeat.

Try not to pause between each jump to raise your heart rate


GREAT FOR: LEGS, BOTTOM, CORE Technique knees as high as possible. ■ Run on the spot, pumping ■ Swing your arms as if you your arms and lifting your were running normally.

Aim to get your knees up to waist heig ht

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The 10-minute

HOW TO DO IT: Use the heaviest weight you can manage while keeping good form for every move. Perform 10 repetitions of each exercise back to back without rest until you’ve completed one set of every move, then take a 90-second breather, go back to the start and repeat the circuit.


GREAT FOR: LEGS, BOTTOM Technique pushing your bottom back ■ Stand with your feet until your thighs are parallel to the floor or lower. hip-width apart, holding a ■ Push back up through your barbell across your shoulders. ■ Bend your hips and knees, heels and repeat for 10 reps.

Lift your chest and face forward throug hout

YOU’LL NEED: Barbell, kettlebell


GREAT FOR: BOTTOM, LEGS, CORE, BACK to swing the kettlebell Technique ■ Holding a kettlebell with up to around eye level. ■ As the kettlebell swings both hands, bend at your hips and knees, allowing back down, reverse the the kettlebell to drop movement, then repeat between your legs. in a fluid motion. ■ Quickly straighten up, thrusting your hips forward and squeezing your bottom

Aim for full hip extension as you stand up


GREAT FOR: CHEST, REAR UPPER ARMS, CORE of your head to your heels. Technique ■ Start in plank position on ■ Slowly lower your chest so your hands, with your body that it is just hovering above in a straight line from the top the floor. Brace your core to




keep your body straight and avoid rounding your back. ■ Push back up to the start position and repeat.



GREAT FOR: LEGS, BOTTOM, BACK, CORE, SHOULDERS, REAR, UPPER ARMS ■ Bend your arms to row the ■ Straighten your legs as Technique ■ Stand with your feet barbell up to your chin. you push the barbell toward ■ Drop your body below the the ceiling. hip-width apart, holding a ■ Return to the barbell in front of your thighs barbell as you rotate your grip with your knees slightly bent. so your palms are facing up. start and repeat.

Keep the bar as close to your body as possible

This move will help improve your posture




GREAT FOR: UPPER BACK, FRONT UPPER ARMS upper body forward slightly. Technique ■ Start holding a barbell with ■ Row the barbell up to your your arms extended toward ribs, squeezing your shoulder the floor. Bend your legs and blades together at the top. ■ Lower to the start and repeat. hinge at your hips to lean your


GREAT FOR: LEGS, CORE your right leg behind it. Technique ■ Stand, balancing on your ■ Repeat on the other right leg. Jump as far to the side and continue fluidly left as possible, landing on to complete the set. Two your left leg and crossing jumps equals one rep.

Search for womensfitnessau on Spotify to get this workout’s matching playlist!


Position your hands under your shoulders



GREAT FOR: LEGS, CORE Technique ■ Start in plank position on your hands, with your body in a straight line from your head to your heels. ■ Jump one foot forward, keeping the rest of your body as still as you can. ■ Jump it back again as you jump the other foot forward and continue fluidly to complete the set. Two leg changes equals one rep.




goodness INTO YOUR SUMMER Arm yourself with nourishing snacks and kick bikini-body saboteurs to the curb

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Just in case you need another reason to get your daily dose of fruit and veg, researchers from Harvard University reckon these fibre-rich foods may reduce your breast cancer risk. In fact, by adding 10g of fibre (the amount you’d get from an apple and two slices of wholegrain bread) to your plate each day, you could slash your chances by 13 per cent. Try these tips to get your fill: 1 BULK UP YOUR SALADS Add chickpeas, lentils or kidney beans to leafy salads to up your fibre and keep you feeling full. 2 EAT MORE AT BREKKIE Give your bowl of oats an extra fibre boost by sprinkling some almonds and pistachios on top. 3 SWAP YOUR BASES Trade your regular pizza base for a cauliflower one instead. It’s healthier and has more fibre.







Slow summer Think a slow cooker is just for winter? Pfft! Switch on and beat the heat with these nutritious dishes

Mexican chilli chicken tacos SERVES 4-6


3-4 portions leftover chicken, shredded (or whatever amount you have) or 500g chicken mince cup chicken stock 1 onion, ďŹ nely sliced 4 garlic cloves, crushed juice of 2 limes 1 tbs olive oil 1 tsp ground cumin 1 tsp chilli powder 1 tsp smoked paprika sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste 1 red chilli, sliced with seeds (optional) 1 cup fresh coriander leaves, roughly chopped 6 small gluten-free tortillas TOPPINGS red cabbage, shredded 1 avocado, mashed or cubed fresh coriander leaves lime wedges sour cream tzatziki lemony gremolata (see page 93) 1 Place the shredded chicken (or mince) in the slow-cooker insert. Add the stock, onion, garlic, lime juice, olive oil, spices and salt and pepper. Stir to ensure the chicken is coated. 2 Cover and cook for 1 hours on low or 45 minutes on high. Once cooked, scatter with chilli and coriander. 3 Warm the tortillas in the microwave or grill. Serve the chicken mixture, tortillas and toppings separately. Let everyone help themselves.



Coffee and cacao-cured brisket SERVES 8-10


1.5-2kg beef brisket homemade coleslaw, to serve pickles and homemade tomato sauce, to serve

When serving , slice finely and make sure everyone gets a flavoursome chunk of the marinade!

SPICE RUB cup rice malt syrup 2 tbs dark roast coffee, finely ground 1 tbs raw cacao powder 1 tbs smoked paprika 2 tsp chilli powder 2 tsp sea salt



2 tsp garlic powder 2 tsp ground cumin 1 Place the brisket in the slow-cooker insert. Pour over the spice rub ingredients and massage into the brisket, ensuring the whole piece of meat is coated. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight. 2 Cook brisket for 9 hours on low or 5 hours on high, until the meat is tender. Serve with a side of coleslaw, pickles and tomato sauce.



Slow bros (double-choc walnut brownies) SERVES 16



oil or butter, for greasing 1 cups almond meal cup raw cacao powder 1 tsp gluten-free baking powder tsp sea salt 125g butter, melted (or cup coconut oil, melted) cup rice malt syrup 3 eggs cup walnuts, finely chopped 80g dark (85% cocoa) chocolate, chopped into chunks cream, to serve 1 Grease the inside of the slow-cooker insert and line with baking paper so that it reaches halfway up the sides. 2 In a large bowl, combine the almond meal, raw cacao powder, baking powder and sea salt. 3 In a separate bowl, whisk the melted butter and rice malt syrup until well combined. Add the eggs


and continue to whisk until the mixture comes together. 4 Pour the butter mixture into the dry ingredients and mix thoroughly. Stir through the chopped walnuts and chocolate chunks. 5 Pour the batter into the prepared slow cooker. Cover and cook for 2 hours on low or 1 hours on high, until the exterior of the mixture is firm and the centre is no longer liquid. Remove the lid and continue cooking on low for a further 30 minutes or until the centre cooks through. The centre will be more moist than the perimeter of the brownie, so don’t burn the outside waiting for the centre to firm up. 6 Switch off the slow cooker and leave the brownies to rest for 10-15 minutes. Carefully remove from the slow cooker by grabbing the edges of the baking paper and gently lifting out. Allow to cool before slicing. Serve with cream.




EatFIT This is delish served with fried or poached eg gs.


Reckon hot weather and hot food don’t mix? I Quit Sugar’s Sarah Wilson presents a case for the defence…


Using a slow cooker means not turning on a hot oven or slaving over hot pans! Slow cookers work best when undisturbed, so keep your hands off.


A slow cooker is super energyefficient, important in summer. It uses less electricity than a light bulb! Plus, it means you can enjoy the late evening for a swim or a walk, rather than worrying about cooking. Come in as the sun sets and dinner is ready.


Sweet pumpkin Sunday beans SERVES 6


2 cups dried borlotti or kidney beans, soaked overnight (or 2 x 400g cans, drained and rinsed) 300g peeled pumpkin, chopped into 3cm pieces 2 cups chicken stock 2 tbs sweet paprika 1 tbs dried oregano tsp sea salt 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper

1 Rinse the soaked beans under cold running water, removing any discoloured ones, and toss into the slow cooker with the pumpkin. 2 Cover with the chicken stock. Add the paprika, oregano, salt and pepper. Cover and cook for 6 hours on low or 3 hours on high or until the beans are soft. 3 Remove the lid and mash the pumpkin using a fork to thicken the sauce mixture.

The slow cooker cooking is my answer to eating well. It extracts the best of food without destroying enzymes. High temperatures and steam can account for the loss of 30 per cent of the vitamin content of some vegetables. Using the slow cooker will allow you to preserve the vitamins and minerals in your food. And the slow-cooker cuts of meat are often the most nutritious.


In summer, I love using refreshing ingredients such as lemon, lime, thyme and coconut milk. You can even make yoghurt in the slow cooker – perfect for summer breakfasts. I love making my lemony picnic chicken with gremolata, or for dessert, a lime, coconut and poppy seed cake.


Thai pumpkin and cauliflower soup SERVES 6



2 potatoes, peeled, chopped into chunks 1 onion, finely chopped 2 garlic cloves, crushed 1 lemongrass stem, white part only, finely sliced 1 kaffir lime leaf, thinly sliced 2-3cm knob ginger, skin removed, finely grated 1 tsp ground cumin tsp ground turmeric 1-2 fresh red chillies, finely sliced (depending on how hot you like your soup) head cauliflower, cut into small florets 500g pumpkin, chopped into chunks sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste 1.25 litres vegetable stock cup probiotic Greek yoghurt, to serve fresh coriander leaves, to serve

Serve this soup with Aussie damper or toasted sourdoug h.

IN THE MORNING 1 Place all the ingredients (saving some of the chilli to serve) except for the yoghurt and coriander in the slow-cooker insert. Cook for 8 hours on low or 4 hours on high. IN THE EVENING 1 Use a stick blender to puree the ingredients to the desired consistency. Serve with a dollop of yoghurt, a sprinkle of coriander and sliced chilli.

For more great slow cooker recipes, pick up a copy of I Quit Sugar: Slow Cooker Cookbook by Sarah Wilson (Pan Macmillan Australia, $24.99).






The lemon flavour keeps this classic dish fresh for summer.

Lemon and cinnamon lamb shanks with lemony gremolata




1 large onion, finely chopped 1 large carrot, chopped into 2cm chunks 1 small fennel, sliced into 1.5cm wedges (reserve fronds for later) 3 stalks celery, chopped into 2cm chunks (reserve the leaves) 200g baby new potatoes, halved 4-6 lamb shanks (approx 1.5kg) 2 garlic cloves, crushed 1 cup chicken stock cup white wine or chicken stock dash apple cider vinegar 1 bay leaf 1 tsp dried thyme 1 tsp ground cinnamon 1 tbs preserved lemon, chopped, or juice of 2 lemons LEMONY GREMOLATA bunch flat-leaf parsley, very finely chopped 6-8 garlic cloves, finely chopped

grated zest and juice of 2 lemons or 2 tbs preserved lemon, chopped cup extra-virgin olive oil 1 tsp sea salt IN THE MORNING 1 Place the onion, carrot, fennel, celery and potatoes in the slow-cooker insert. Arrange the shanks on top then add the remaining ingredients (except fennel fronds, celery leaves and lemony gremolata) over the lot. Stir (no need to mix completely). Cover and cook for 8 hours on low or 4 hours on high. BEFORE SERVING 1 In the final 20 minutes, add the fennel fronds and chopped celery leaves. To make the lemony gremolata, combine all the ingredients in a jar and shake. 2 Once you’re ready to eat, remove the shanks and pull the meat from the bones. Serve with the lemony gremolata.





Everyday goodness Hands up if you want something super nutritious, but totally achievable, to cook any day of the week… Try these simple recipes on for size

Quinoa detox salad SERVES 6 AS A SIDE



200g mixed quinoa 2 beetroot, julienned 2 carrots, julienned 1 apple, julienned 2 spring onions, thinly sliced 1 large handful of mint leaves 1 cup flat-leaf (Italian) parsley, roughly chopped 1 tbs chia seeds DRESSING 2 tsp fresh ginger, finely grated 2 tsp honey 3 tbs lemon juice 3 tbs olive oil 1 Cook the quinoa according to the packet directions. Alternatively, wash the quinoa in cold water and drain, then put it in a medium saucepan and add 500ml of cold water. Bring to the boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes. Cover the saucepan with a lid, reduce the heat to low and cook for a further 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and stand with the lid on for 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork and allow to cool before adding it to the salad. 2 Shake all of the dressing ingredients with salt and pepper together in a jar. Set aside while you prepare the salad, to allow the flavours to develop. 3 Combine the salad ingredients, except the chia seeds, in a bowl, dress and toss. 4 Serve on a platter, sprinkled with the chia seeds.


Celebrity chef Anna Gare has a few simple foodie rules she lives by in the kitchen

“I am a self-confessed rule breaker. If someone says ‘don’t’, it makes me want to break all the rules. I’ve tried to follow diets – 5:2, no sugar, low carbs, no fat, paleo, fodmap, bone broth – but I’ve found that when I go on a diet I am completely focussed on food. I become


obsessed with the indulgent stuff like gourmet ice-cream. All of a sudden I’m a hungry food-munching machine and the can’t-haves become the must-haves – and I actually gain weight. So the way I maintain a healthy, balanced diet is by following my natural instincts with food:



1 If it’s a colourful mea , it’s generally a healthy meal. 2 If it has no preservatives or additives, it’s nutritious. 3 If it’s homemade, it’s a delicious meal and you know where all your ingredients come from.”


EatFIT Portuguese chicken wings SERVES 4-6


14-16 plump chicken wings 12 fresh bay leaves, whole MARINADE juice and zest of 1 lemon 3 large garlic cloves, finely chopped 1 tbs smoked paprika 3 tbs olive oil 2 fresh bay leaves, finely chopped 1 tsp dried oregano 1 handful oregano leaves, finely chopped 1 tsp salt 1 Combine the marinade ingredients in a bowl. 2 Cut the tip off each chicken

wing and discard (or freeze them to make stock later). 3 Coat the chicken wings in the marinade and place in the fridge for at least 1 hour. 4 Skewer the wings and thread the bay leaves between the chicken pieces. Depending on the length of the skewers, you might fit 3-4 wings on each. 5 Cook over a barbecue or in a chargrill pan over medium-low heat for 30-40 minutes, rotating for even cooking and basting with any remaining marinade. 6 Serve with a fresh, summery salad.

For more delish meals you can whip up every day, pick up a copy of Delicious Every Day by Anna Gare (Murdoch Books, $39.99).

Rotto herring SERVES 4


3 tbs olive oil, plus extra for drizzling 10 herring, scaled, cleaned and filleted (skin on)


WARM DRESSING zest of 1 orange 3 tbs orange juice 3 tbs lemon juice dash of olive oil 1 long red chilli, thinly sliced 1 large garlic clove, finely chopped 1 tsp fennel seeds 3 Sevillano (queen) green olives, pitted and roughly chopped 1 large handful of coriander leaves, finely chopped




1 Mix all of the dressing ingredients together in a bowl, taste for balance of flavours and season with salt and pepper. 2 Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan. Lay the herring fillets, skin side down, in the pan and fry for a few minutes until they start to curl up and are almost cooked through. 3 Turn the herring over and immediately pour the dressing over the fish in the pan. Cook for a further minute, or until the fish flakes easily and is cooked through. 4 Serve in the pan at the table with an extra drizzle of olive oil. 95



magic Pass the pepper to shake up your health EVER WONDERED WHAT GIVES BLACK PEPPER ITS PUNGENCY? That would be an alkaloid called piperine, which is known for its ability to increase the absorption of key nutrients, including selenium, B vitamins, beta-carotene and cancer-fighting curcumin, by up to 2,000 per cent. Piperine is good news for joints, too – given it improves circulation and contains anti-inflammatory properties, it has the ability to ease joint pain and arthritis. But that’s not all the magic in black pepper – it also contains some calcium, zinc, iron and potassium, which is important for regulating cellular and bodily fluids, as well as heart rate and blood pressure. If you suffer from poor digestion, you may want to start adding more black pepper to your food. It helps to increase hydrochloric acid in the stomach, which is vital for breaking down food before it passes into the intestines. In turn, improving your digestion then helps to prevent GI issues such as diarrhoea and constipation. And because black pepper is a carminative, it can help minimise gas and bloating. Sprinkling a little extra cracked black pepper onto your plate can help to keep 96

your arteries clean, too. Like fibre, black pepper helps to ‘scrape’ excess cholesterol off your arterial walls, reducing your risk of atherosclerosis and consequently heart attacks or strokes. In Ayurvedic medicine, black pepper is used in tonics for coughs and colds, and also provides relief from sinusitis and nasal congestion because it can help to break down mucus and phlegm. If all else fails, sniff a little of the black stuff to bring on the sneezing – nasal passages be cleared! When used as an essential oil (yep, we bet you didn’t know that was a thing), black pepper can soothe insect bites and act as a natural painkiller. Or it can be dropped in a diffuser to help nix anxiety, thanks to the piperine encouraging an increase in the production of the happy hormone serotonin, as well as increasing your endorphins to improve your mood and boost mental clarity. In fact, when it comes to our brain health, early research has shown that certain chemical pathways are stimulated by black pepper and that it may even help prevent Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. Watch this space!



3 ways with black pepper 1 BEDTIME TURMERIC MILK In a small saucepan, gently heat 240ml unsweetened coconut, rice or nut milk. Add tsp turmeric powder, a few shakes of ground black pepper and a dash of vanilla. Heat through and serve with a sprinkle of cinnamon. 2 MARINATED TOFU Make a sauce by blending 1 tbs freshly ground black peppercorns, 5 tbs soy sauce, 3 tbs rice wine, 2 tbs honey, an inch-long piece of ginger, chopped, and 3 cloves crushed garlic. Pour over chopped tofu in a bowl, cover and allow to marinate for 30 minutes in the fridge before cooking. 3 PRAWN STIR-FRY Using a pestle and mortar or pepper mill, lightly pound 1 tsp black peppercorns. Heat a wok with 2 tbs coconut oil and sauté 2 cloves crushed garlic with the black pepper for two minutes. Add 340g shelled raw prawns and stir well. Add tbs oyster sauce, 1 tbs rice wine and 1 tsp honey, stir again before throwing in 2 finely chopped spring onions and 1 chopped red capsicum. Fry for 2-3 minutes until the prawns are cooked through. Serve with brown rice.




Guides you to create delicious meals quickly and easily.

Less Than 12 Minutes 85+ IN BUILT RECIPES



Accessed on the easy to use digital control panel.

Recipes include a step by step guide using 6 or less ingredients.

Meals cooked fast due to pressure cook functionality (65% of meals cooked in under 12 minutes.


Heat up your nutritional intake this summer with these foodie switches

SWAP TOMATO SOUP FOR GAZPACHO Whether you whizz up your own or opt for a supermarket version, summery gazpacho – a Spanish tomato-based soup made of raw vegetables and served cold – is lower in cholesterol-raising saturated fat than your run-of-the-mill tomato soup. Drizzle some heart-healthy olive oil over it to boost absorption of the fat-soluble antioxidant lycopene, which you might not absorb well from uncooked tomatoes. BUYER’S TIP: Choose varieties with capsicums in them for higher vitamin C.

SWAP CANNED CORN FOR CORN ON THE COB Sure, corn straight off the cob is crunchier and tastier than the canned or frozen varieties (mmm, mouth-watering, fresh-off-the-BBQ corn!) but it also retains a higher amount of energy-releasing niacin (vitamin B3). Tuck in to also get a boost of lutein and zeaxanthin – these carotenoid antioxidants accumulate in the back of the eye where they are thought to protect against UV damage. BUYER’S TIP: Kernels should be tightly packed, plump and smaller at the tips than in the middle – this indicates young cobs.

SWAP FROZEN PEAS FOR FRESH BROAD BEANS In season, broad beans are as rich in fibre as frozen peas, and are loaded with more vitamin C. They’re also a good source of pantothenic acid (vitamin B5), which helps release energy from your food. Crush the beans to create a hummus style spread or use in a chorizo and broad bean risotto. BUYER’S TIP: The best broad beans have firm, pale green coloured pods without any brown spots.

SWAP APPLE JUICE FOR WATERMELON JUICE For a sweet taste of sunshine, process a fresh watermelon through your juicer or blender. Not only is it the Insta-worthiest of all the fruits, but watermelon’s rich red colour signifies the presence of heart-healthy lycopene. Plus, watermelon juice is higher in vitamin C than apple juice, and also slightly less sugary. BUYER’S TIP: Watermelons develop a patch where they rest on the ground – when this is creamy yellow, it’s ripe. 98





SWAP PRAWNS FOR CRAB Similarly high in lean protein, crab meat (fresh from the fish markets or prepared and bought from the supermarket) is a light and delish alternative to prawns in salads and seafood pasta dishes. It’s a good source of omega-3 fats and rich in iron and zinc, with similar amounts to red meat. Don’t just eat the white meat – the brown is richer in nutrients. BUYER’S TIP: When buying a whole crab fresh, look for the largest legs and claws to get the most meat out of it.

SWAP RED GRAPES FOR FRESH FIGS Just like grapes, fresh figs work a treat with cheese! But other than being a great addition to your antipasto platter, figs have higher levels of calcium and iron than other fruits – plus, the darker the figs, the more beneficial anthocyanin antioxidants they contain. Gently wipe them and cut off any hard stems before eating (you can eat the skins, BTW). They’re delicious halved then grilled for two to three minutes or roasted whole for eight to 12 minutes. BUYER’S TIP: At the peak of their ripeness, figs will have a faint bloom. If they smell sour, they’re past their best.

SWAP MUSHROOMS FOR EGGPLANT Like mushrooms, eggplant has a texture that substitutes well for meat in vegetarian and vegan dishes. The deep purple skin is rich in an anthocyanin antioxidant called nasunin, which lab studies have found to protect brain cell membranes from damage. Eggplant’s also high in chlorogenic acid, one of the most potent free-radical scavengers found in plants. Try eggplant simply sliced long-ways and barbecued with a drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkle of salt and pepper. BUYER’S TIP: To make sure you buy a fresh eggplant, choose one with a bright green stem and press it gently with your thumb – the indentation should refill rapidly. A good eggplant will feel fairly heavy; a light one may be woody.



SWAP SALMON FOR MACKEREL A mackerel steak is even higher in heart-healthy omega-3 fats than salmon, so it’s a top choice for your ticker. Just one serving supplies more than the full daily recommendation of vitamin D and a good dollop of selenium (important for thyroid function and the immune system). BUYER’S TIP: An especially tasty option, Spanish mackerel is also generally the most sustainably fished in Australia.


For every 300ml glass of ice-cold water you drink, your body uses around 10 calories bringing it up to body temperature. So trade your usual herbal teas for a H2O on the rocks!



Fresh blackcurrants contain four times more vitamin C than oranges and a whopping 33 times more than blueberries. They’re also higher in the anthocyanin antioxidants that have been linked with better memory and cognitive function than blueberries. Don’t like their tart flavour? Disguise it by whizzing them up into a smoothie with sweeter fruit such as bananas. BUYER’S TIP: Blackcurrants are considered to have a short season, with the fresh kind harvested in the months of December and January. Love this? Search for more like it on KEYWORDS: FOOD HEALTHY @womensfitnessau



Edible flowers They won’t just pretty up your plate, they can sweeten your health, too THE LOWDOWN: Remember when a sprig of parsley was the ultimate way to make a meal look posh? These days, you’re more likely to find a posy of petals on your plate as chefs tap into the prettifying effects of edible flowers. But, if you’ve been quietly plucking them off your avo toast (after a quick snap for Insta first), listen up – this garnish is as good for you as it looks. “Edible flowers can have amazing health benefits,” explains WF naturopath Belinda Kirkpatrick. “Due to their colours, many will contain concentrated antioxidants and bioflavonoids, plus vitamins and minerals.” The goods: While nibbling on your garden’s finest might seem weird, it makes more sense when you realise that most flowers

are actually considered herbs. “Western herbal medicine uses all parts of the plant, depending where the active constituents are for that plant,” says Kirkpatrick. “The part used may be the leaves, roots or flowers.” That doesn’t mean all flowers are edible, though – some (like oleander) are seriously toxic, so do your research before you start decorating your meals. Petals you can safely munch include roses, marigolds, dandelion, hibiscus, lavender and nasturtiums, but take care that they’ve been grown organically so you don’t ingest any nasty pesticides, and look for flowers that are sold specifically for eating if you’re buying them. Oh, and if you’re allergic to pollen, go slow with this trend: “Flowers are more likely

to trigger allergic reactions in susceptible people due to potential pollen content,” Kirkpatrick explains. “Begin by adding one type of flower to a meal – each type of flower will taste different to the next.” Give it a go: Ready to experiment with your edible bouquet? Wash your blooms carefully, then go forth and sprinkle. “I love adding marigolds to salads as they provide a light, peppery flavour,” says Kirkpatrick. “I also infuse fresh lavender from my garden to make a relaxing after-dinner herbal tea.” You could also try freezing petals in ice cubes to pretty up your water jug on a hot day; use them to infuse a sauce with delicate flavour; or ditch that sprig of parsley and make your meals a little more fancy.

Pick your own

MARIGOLD This cheery flower has a peppery flavour, so it’s great sprinkled through a salad. “Marigold flowers are amazing in the promotion of healing,” adds Kirkpatrick. 100

BORAGE These pretty blue blossoms are rich in calcium and iron and have soothing properties. They look sweet added to desserts or salads and have a mild, cucumber-like taste.

NASTURTIUM You can eat the flowers, the leaves or the seeds of this common garden plant. They have a sharp, peppery kick and are loaded with B and C vitamins and other nutrients.


VIOLA Certain species of this flower are safe to eat – and have been used as a heart tonic and cold remedy. The petals look pretty scattered over sweet and savoury dishes. @womensfitnessmag

DANDELION Often considered a weed, dandelion flowers are actually a boon for your liver and digestive health. “They’re high in vitamin C and potassium,” says Kirkpatrick. @womensfitnessau

LAVENDER This spring bloom is famous for its calming properties. “Lavender reduces stress and anxiety,” says Kirkpatrick – make the most of it in a tea, or use it to infuse honey.


Our guide to the best edible petals for your plate

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D O O M D O FO cing The hormone-balan to act all comes down what’s on your plate


EatFIT ALTHOUGH YOU CAN’T SEE THEM, HORMONES ARE A CRUCIAL part of our wellbeing. The finely controlled endocrine system helps pretty much everything from managing our appetite, metabolism and mood, to concentration and sex drive. These chemical messengers send signals to and from different parts of our bodies to keep our organs firing on all cylinders, but when our hormone levels go haywire, they can wreak a whole lotta havoc on our body systems. “The word hormone comes from a Greek word that means ‘urge on’. And hormones do just that – they send signals via the blood, and their job is to trigger activity in different organs and body parts,” explains nutritionist and author of Natural Alternatives to Sugar, Dr Marilyn Glenville. Here’s how to get the balance right to feel back on your A-game.




You can blame: Fluctuating female hormones PMS symptoms (caused by fluctuations in oestrogen and progesterone), can start anywhere up to 10 days before your period is due, and if you’re lumped with full-blown mood swings, headaches, lower abdominal cramping and a general feeling of fatigue, making some changes to your diet could help to effectively blast away symptoms. “The most important dietary change you can make is to keep your blood-sugar levels steady. The higher your sugar intake (and caffeine, too) the more severe your symptoms are likely to be, so cut out sugar and caffeine where possible,” recommends Dr Glenville. “Also, try to eat every three hours, as this prevents your blood sugar levels from dropping and stops the release of stress hormones, which block the hormone progesterone in the second half of your cycle.” ■ Foods to cure: Craving a family-size block of Cadbury Dairy Milk around this time? You may be low in magnesium. Along with dark green leafy veg (think spinach and Swiss chard), good quality dark and raw chocolate are both good sources of magnesium, so go ahead and treat yourself to a couple of squares to conquer cravings and boost magnesium levels. Chow down on zinc-rich pumpkin seeds to help balance female hormones, along with fish and chicken, as these are high in vitamin B6 – a nutrient which assists with keeping your moods stable.



You can blame: Low melatonin levels Feel like you can’t function because you haven’t had enough zzzs? Poor sleep can turn what’s meant to be the most restful part of the day into the most stressful. The hormone melatonin, which is released in darkness, is key to improving sleep. “Melatonin is a hormone that plays a crucial role in a healthy circadian cycle, released by the brain’s pineal gland when it starts to get dark,” explains nutritionist Shona Wilkinson. “It prepares your body for shut-eye by breaking down the energetic hormones to allow us to sleep. It shuts down our brain activity, making it harder to concentrate and be physically active.” Keep it balanced and you’re on the path to snooze success. Rejig your sleeping habits by using blackout blinds, and avoiding bright lights from your laptop and TV one hour before bed. ■ Foods to cure: Make sure you’re eating enough protein during the day, like meats, fish, beans, lentils, seeds and nuts (opt for unsalted and raw). “Protein provides the amino acid tryptophan. This converts to the hormones serotonin and melatonin, which are needed for good sleep,” says Wilkinson. Avoid too much high-protein food in the last few hours before bed, however, as they can be hard to digest that late – especially red meat and nuts.



You can blame: Elevated levels of adrenaline and cortisol Our bodies release adrenaline and cortisol whenever we perceive danger – but given many of us have reached a state of chronic stress, experts believe our bodies can’t distinguish between late trains or missed appointments and out-of-control debt or truly life-threatening stress. “The adrenal glands are small glands that sit on top of each kidney, and are responsible for responding to stress by producing cortisol,” explains Wilkinson. “Cortisol tells the body to react to stressful conditions in a positive way, such as increasing concentration and energy levels. However, chronic stress can have the opposite effect, leading to adrenal exhaustion, lower immunity,

“When our hormone levels go haywire, they can wreak a whole lotta havoc on our body systems” anxiety and chronic diseases.” ■ Foods to cure: Stress and anxiety can be fuelled by eating the wrong foods. “When the body is stressed it can crave sweet foods such as chocolate. Although these foods may give you a temporary lift by raising your blood sugar, in the longer term they will act against you by putting more strain on the adrenal glands as they try to keep your blood sugar balanced,” says Wilkinson. Stick to snacks like nuts, as these contain some protein and good fats that will reduce your cravings. They’re also a good source of magnesium, which helps with efficient energy production, while also being calming to the nervous system. “Hummus and wholegrain crackers are another great idea. Replacing that afternoon coffee with ginger or liquorice tea will also help,” adds Wilkinson.



■ You can blame: An imbalance in the hormones leptin and ghrelin Eating well around the clock is the trick to keeping your energy levels regulated – and eating little and often will help to keep appetite hormones leptin and ghrelin balanced to offset fatigue. “Leptin and ghrelin have been found to have a major influence on our energy balance,” says Wilkinson. “Extensive research has shown that in obese individuals, the level of leptin is increased and ghrelin is decreased. They also show that obese individuals can become resistant to hunger-controlling hormone leptin. Overall, this is where the miscommunication in the body can occur.” ■ Foods to cure: Tuck in to a small meal every two to three hours that contains protein. Make sure you’re always eating breakfast, lunch and dinner, plus snacks throughout the day – for example, a boiled egg, 10-12 almonds, or a small can of tuna and brown rice. “Ensure the carbohydrates you eat are unrefined. This means going for the whole and brown type rather than the white. This will stop those cravings for sweet foods,” explains Wilkinson.

page for delicious e th n ur T … ce an al b Find a better recipes designed to support your hormones womensfitnessaustralia




BALANCED SERVE These recipes will help get your hormones on an even keel



SALMON 220g salmon fillet, cut into 4cm chunks 2 tbs white and black sesame seeds 1 tbs coconut oil SLAW 200g broccoli, cut into small florets 4 spring onions, washed and sliced diagonally 1 large handful fresh mint, washed and chopped 120g wombok (Chinese cabbage), very thinly sliced 1 tbs pickled ginger, thinly sliced


DRESSING 1 tbs fresh ginger, finely grated 1 heaped tsp miso paste 1 tbs rice vinegar -1 tbs Mirin 1 tbs tamari or soy sauce 1 tbs sesame oil 1 Combine all the dressing ingredients, using a fork to smash in the miso paste. 2 Toss the salmon with the sesame seeds to roughly coat all over. 3 Blanch the broccoli in boiling water for about 2 minutes or steam for 4 minutes.



Refresh in cold water to prevent the broccoli from cooking longer, then drain. 4 Heat a frying pan and add the oil and spring onions. Cook for about 30 seconds to just scorch the outside of the onions. Take them out of the pan. 5 Mix the broccoli, onion and remaining slaw ingredients in a bowl. Don’t add the dressing until just before serving. 6 Add the salmon to the pan and sear on each side for 30 seconds. Then remove from the hot pan and turn off the heat. 7 Toss the slaw with the dressing. Divide between two plates and top with salmon.




PASTRY 200g frozen or cold buckwheat flour or wholewheat flour 125g cold organic butter, chopped pinch salt 3 tbs cold water

Peel as little of the onion skin off as possible, as the highest concentration of their beneficial flavonoid nutrients are found in the outer layers.

FILLING 4 large red onions, peeled and each cut into 8 wedges tbs extra-virgin olive oil salt and freshly ground pepper 2 large eggs, beaten 250g natural yoghurt 1 tbs fresh thyme leaves, washed 1 garlic clove, peeled and crushed 60g black Kalamata olives, pitted and roughly chopped 2 tbs feta, crumbled 1 Preheat the oven to 200°C (180°C fan-forced). Line two baking trays with baking paper. 2 In a bowl, toss the onions with olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper. 3 Put the onions onto one lined baking tray, then into the oven for about 20-30 minutes or until just soft. 4 To make the pastry, put the cold flour, salt and butter into a food processor. Blend for about 30 seconds, until the mixture is like breadcrumbs. 5 With the blender running, add the cold water and process until the pastry comes together into a ball, about 1 minute. 6 Remove and place onto a floured surface. Roll out into a rough circle about 30cm in diameter. This can be as misshapen as you like, since this is a free-form pie. Any shape is good! 7 Carefully move onto a fresh lined baking tray. If any of the pastry flops over the side, that’s okay as you will fold it in once the filling is made. 8 To make the filling, roughly mix the eggs and yoghurt in a bowl. Add the thyme, garlic and olives and mix. 9 Pour this mixture into the centre of the pastry, place the onions on top. Spread the filling ingredients, leaving about 2.5cm gap around the edges. Scatter the feta over the filling. 10 Fold over the edges of the tart ‘free-form’ style. Put the tart into the oven to bake for 35 minutes. 11 Once the tart is cooked, the pastry will be quite soft while it’s very hot. Leave it for 10 minutes before cutting to serve.





CRUST 400g cooked quinoa, any colour 2 tbs sesame seeds 2 tbs black chia seeds 1 heaped tbs Parmesan cheese, freshly grated (optional) 1 large egg, lightly beaten pinch salt and freshly ground pepper

The mushies in this pie help support your immune system and reduce inflammation, so hormone production can be enhanced. They also contain B vitamins, helpful in energy production.

FILLING 15g dried porcini mushrooms 3 large eggs, lightly beaten 280g yoghurt (not thickened) salt and freshly ground white pepper 1 tbs extra-virgin olive oil 1 large red onion, finely chopped 450g large field mushrooms, sliced 1 clove of garlic, peeled and crushed 1 heaped tbs fresh thyme, tarragon or basil leaves (or you can use dried) 25g Parmesan cheese, blue or other hard cheese, freshly grated GREENS 2 tsp extra-virgin olive oil 1 bunch spinach or bunch silverbeet, kale or Swiss chard, washed and roughly chopped lemon 1 Preheat the oven to 200°C (180°C fan-forced). Lightly oil a 22cm springform cake tin and line with baking paper. 2 Soak the porcini mushrooms in warm water for 10 minutes, then drain and chop. 3 Mix the crust ingredients together and thinly press all around the tin. Begin with the sides, then fill the base, pressing firmly to ensure the crust sticks. 4 Mix the eggs, yoghurt, salt and pepper in a large bowl, and leave to one side. 5 Gently fry the onion and mushrooms in a pan on a low heat until soft, about 5 minutes. Take off the heat and tip into a bowl to cool. Stir in the garlic, thyme and cheese, plus salt and pepper. Then tip into the egg mix and stir through. 6 Pour this mixture into the crust-lined cake tin. Bake in the oven for about 40 minutes, until the egg is just cooked. Rest for 10 minutes out of the oven. 7 Wilt the greens in a pan with the olive oil and season to taste. Squeeze over the lemon juice and serve with the pie.








250g (about 2) fresh peaches or pears, washed, de-stoned or cored and roughly chopped 250g fresh or frozen berries zest from 1 lime 150g hazelnuts and macadamia nuts, roughly chopped 60g unsweetened coconut chips 1 tbs pure maple syrup or honey natural yoghurt, cinnamon and vanilla, to serve (optional)


1 Preheat the oven to 180°C (160°C fan-forced). 2 Toss the fruit together in a bowl

and add the zest from the lime. 3 Using individual ovenproof ceramic pots, about 125ml capacity, spoon the fruit into the pots, packing it down well as you go. 4 Mix the chopped nuts, coconut and maple syrup together in a bowl so they become sticky. Top each of the pots with the mixture. 5 Place the pots in the oven for about 10 minutes to crisp the top and warm the fruit. This can be done under a grill. 6 Serve with a dollop of natural unsweetened yogurt and a sprinkle of cinnamon or vanilla.

For more great hormone balancing info and recipes, pick up a copy of The Happy Hormone Cookbook by Jill Keyte and Emma Ellice-Flint (New Holland, $35).


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These hacks will help your summer beauty kit go the distance

MAXIMUM POTENTIAL MAGIC TRICKS WE LIKE: Pulling rabbits out of hats, sawing a glam magician’s assistant in half and materialising coins from behind ears. Magic tricks we don’t like: The disappearing act our face make-up does halfway through a hot summers’ day. If you’re feeling like your lipstick melts as soon as you leave the house and your eyeliner disintegrates the first time you blink, we’ve got good news: Turns out, you don’t need magic to make your blush stick – you just need these expert-approved make-up tips. 120





MAX YOUR… foundation MAX YOUR… blush If your foundation disappears faster than a discounted pair of Lululemon tights at a sample sale, look to your skincare before you slap on another layer. Dry spots will cause your foundation to flake and thirsty skin will eat up anything you slather on top, so ensure your canvas is a well-hydrated one. “To ensure a long-lasting base, the use of a primer best suited to your skin type is vital,” tips Melanie Burnicle, make-up director for Revlon Australasia. After your moisturiser has absorbed, take a primer that addresses your main concerns (such as oiliness, breakouts or wrinkles) and apply a pea-sized amount before buffing in your foundation. Finish with some make-up setting spray or fix your foundation with a translucent powder by dabbing a fluffy brush across your cheeks and T-zone.

When your blush is more fleeting than free wifi, remember this rule: Cream on cream, powder on powder. You’ll not only increase your blush’s wear by allowing it to set properly, you’ll also avoid smudges and streaks. The only exception to this rule? Layering a cream blush with a powder blush. Here’s what’s up: You start with a liquid or cream base, apply a cream blush then enhance that cream blush with a powder version so it Will. Not. Budge.

IN YOUR KIT: 1 Revlon

MAX YOUR… eyeshadow

ColorStay Translucent Pressed Powder, $34.95 2 Designer Brands Spray & Set Makeup Setting Spray, $9.99

MAX YOUR… concealer For concealer that survives a day in the sun (or a night under lights), go for a silicone-based formula and perfect your application. “When applying, press the concealer into place, then blend the edges,” explains Burnicle. Don’t blend the exact spot you’re concealing, as this is where you want the highest concentration of product. Next, it’s time to set. “Using a translucent powder or a powder the same tone as your skin, press the powder into place,” says Burnicle. Handy tip: Don’t drag the brush over the spot you’ve concealed as this will wipe away all your hard work. Press and dab, folks!

IN YOUR KIT: 1 Marc Jacobs Air Blush in Kink & Kisses, $39 2 3CE Cream Blusher in Coral Coral, $25

“If you’ve never used an eye primer before, now’s the time,” says Burnicle. It’ll nix oiliness, ensure a smooth application and prevent shadow from settling into creases. To really max your shadow’s lifespan, choose a long-wear formula and make sure to set it with a light dusting of powder.

IN YOUR KIT: Nude by Nature Perfecting Eye Primer, $19.95

MAX YOUR… mascara Is your mascara waterproof? Good, it should last – but if you’re still worried, Burnicle recommends using some almighty translucent powder under the eye and on the eyelid before you coat your lashes. “This minimises lines and smudges by taking moisture out of the skin and ensures that if the mascara moves, there’s no oil on the skin to smudge it,” she explains.

IN YOUR KIT: Bourjois

IN YOUR KIT: It Cosmetics Tightline Waterproof

Blur The Lines Concealer, $20

Mascara, $38


MAX YOUR… eyeliner Next time you scour the beauty aisles for the perfect eyeliner, consider this: Is the eyeliner in your hands designed to smudge or stay put? If it’s the former and you’re after a summer-, sweat- and party-proof look, put it back. Instead, opt for a waterproof or longwear formula, apply it before your shadow, set it with a translucent powder, then apply another layer. For extra staying power, trace over your liner with an eyeshadow in the same colour before and after the setting powder and if you have super-oily skin, don’t use greasy serums or moisturisers on your eyelids. Oh, and it’s best to apply a mattifying primer before any shadow to avoid panda peepers.

IN YOUR KIT: 1 Tarte Tarteist Clay Paint Liner, $33 2 Rimmel London Colour Precise Eyeliner, $13.95

MAX YOUR… lipstick An ultra-matte lippie is going to last way longer than a sheer, super-slick formula, but to help your colour endure in either case, Burnicle says to exfoliate and moisturise your lips on the reg. “To improve longevity and definition and to prevent feathering and bleeding of any lipstick, use a soft lip liner underneath,” she adds. Simply fill in your pout with a liner that matches your lippie or a creamy neutral shade and you’ll score a sip-proof kisser.

IN YOUR KIT: 1 Mary Kay Gel SemiMatte Lipstick in Always Apricot, $25 2 Cover FX Perfect Pencil in P Medium, $32 womensfitnessaustralia






) T ’ (D O N

LET IT BURN Still totally confused about suncare? Come right this way for a sun-safe summer

IF THERE WAS A PRIZE FOR THE MOST CONFUSING TOPIC in the health and beauty world, sun safety would surely take the (golden) crown. We all know sun exposure can cause burning, skin cancer and ageing. We also know melanoma is the third most common cancer in Aussie women, with more than 13,000 Australians being diagnosed with the condition every year. But despite the warnings, the bevvy of sun protection prods on offer and the fact there’s a hole in the Ozone layer right above us upping our risk of skin cancer, that doesn’t stop us from ’shipping the UV rays. In our defence, it can be a little baffling given we’re regularly told by the pros to get out in the sun to boost our health and happy feels. So, should we chase the sunshine? Do we stay in the shade? Get the balance right with our expert-approved guide.


has detrimental effects, too. Its UV radiation causes sunburn in the short term and skin cancer in the long term. “Conditions such as rosacea, thread veins, prickly heat, polymorphic light eruption (PMLE) and ageing (pigmentation, brown spots, wrinkles and sagging) are all made worse by the sun,” says Dr Lowe.


Unless your golden glow comes from a bottle, there’s no safe way to get a tan, friends. “Any colour change to your skin is a sign of damage,” says Dr Cliff. “Freckles and tanning are your skin producing the pigment melanin in an effort to protect itself. Redness is burning.” The safest way to reap the feel-good and vitamin D benefits of the sun are to expose your arms, chest and face for about 20 minutes early in the morning or late in the afternoon. Other than that, it’s best to stay covered and protected.

“Absolutely – sunlight is vital to human survival,” says consultant dermatologist Dr Nick Lowe. “There are also some skin conditions that are improved by sunlight. Psoriasis, eczema and acne all respond well to some exposure.” Sunlight is also important for mood and, for some people, a lack of it can cause seasonal affective disorder – a depressive condition. “There’s data to show sunlight stimulates proteins in the skin that cause euphoria,” says dermatologist Dr Sandeep Cliff. “It genuinely gives you a boost.” Then there’s the benefit of vitamin D, which is essential for bone health and helps reduce your risk of osteoporosis. It’s also linked to immune function and heart health – and, while you get small amounts from food (such as oily fish, eggs and fortified cereals), 90 per cent is synthesised in the body after exposure to sunlight. The trouble is, we all know the sun

“DOES EXERCISING OUTDOORS INCREASE MY RISK OF SUN DAMAGE?” Most of the sun exposure you’ll experience over your lifetime will be incidental: driving, walking to work, playing sports. “Outdoor exercise obviously increases your exposure, and sweating can make sun protection tricky and uncomfortable,” says Dr Cliff. “Sweat and sunscreen mix together and run into your eyes or evaporate off, but it’s still important to protect yourself.” If you’re heading outside for a summer exercise sesh, look for non-greasy sports formulations and, if possible, reapply during your workout if you’re sweating a lot – spray products are useful for this. Wear a hat or visor with a wide peak to keep rays off your face, and during high summer it’s best to get up early or exercise in the evenings. Keep your exercise out of the sun between 10am and 3pm, Dr Cliff advises.

CHECK YOUR MOLES Use the ABCDE rule to identify developing melanomas early Asymmetry: Does the shape of one half of the mole match the other? Border: Are the edges ragged, notched or blurred and has the pigment spread into the surrounding skin? A benign mole has smooth, even borders. Colour: Is the colour uneven? If you can see shades of black, brown and tan or areas of white, grey, red, pink or blue, it may be a warning signal. Diameter: Have you noticed a change in size? It will usually increase. Typically, melanomas are at least 6mm in diameter (the diameter of a pencil), but they may be smaller when they’re first detected. Evolving: Does the mole look different from the others, or is it changing in size, colour, shape or elevation? If you detect a shift, see your doctor. Note: Melanoma doesn’t always fit the ABCDE rule. If you notice anything different, a new skin lesion or mole that itches or bleeds or something that just doesn’t look right to you, get it checked out at a skin cancer clinic, stat.





“WHAT SPF DO I NEED TO PROTECT MYSELF PROPERLY?” Look for a minimum of SPF 15 with broadspectrum UVA and UVB protection. “An SPF of 15 protects against 93 per cent of UVB rays, while SPF 30 offers 97 per cent protection and SPF 50 98 per cent,” says dermatologist Dr Stefanie Williams. “So the higher SPF you choose, the better protection you’ll have against burning.” For year-round, daily protection, opt for a lotion with broad-spectrum protection and an SPF of 30 or more. For summer exposure, Dr Lowe suggests SPF 30-50+. An Australian study, published in the Annals of Internal Medicine looked at 900 fair-skinned adults over a period of four and a half years. Half of the participants used SPF 15 or higher daily on their face, neck, arms and hands. The other 50 per cent used it only when they felt they needed it. At the end of the study, the group who used the most sun protection showed noticeably fewer signs of ageing. So slip, slop, slap to decrease your risk of sun damage and prevent premature ageing.

“WHAT SPF DO I NEED TO USE AND HOW OFTEN?” Sunscreen applied too thinly offers less protection. “Research says we tend to apply less than half the amount we need,” says Dr Williams. “That means we hardly ever reach the SPF stated on the packaging.” When applying sunscreen, use more than half a teaspoon on each of your arms, face and neck (don’t forget your ears!), then more than one teaspoon on each leg, your torso and back. Basically, you’ll want

“We tend to apply less than half the amount [of sunscreen] we need. That means we hardly ever reach the SPF stated on the packaging” to use a shot glass-sized amount on your whole bod, plus a smidge more. In terms of when you need it, to reduce your skin cancer risk, the important thing is not burning. For this, you can check the UV index forecast daily at A UV index of 1 to 2 is low with no need for protection, 3 to 5 is moderate, 6 to 7 high, 8 to 10 very high and 11 is extreme. If you want to protect your skin 24/7 and prevent premature ageing, however, Dr Lowe says it’s best to use sunscreen all the time. How often should you reapply? “Reapply after swimming and towel drying and to areas where lotion may have rubbed off, such as your legs and back after sitting in a chair,” says Dr Cliff. “Keep it topped up every 30 to 60 minutes.”


“Wearing a hat, UV-protective sunglasses and covering up with clothes is important, especially between 10am and 3pm and for people at risk of skin cancer,” says Dr Lowe. The tighter the weave of the fabric, the more protection it offers – if you hold it up to the light and you can see through it, it’s unlikely to shield you much. “The range of UV-protective clothing, with added UV filters, is advancing,” he says. Think UV-detecting wristbands: one-a-day photosensitive bands that change colour when it’s time to reapply your sunscreen or get out of the sun completely, and if you’re going to be in the sun all day, they might be worth it. Combine a detector, such as the Seafolly UV Indicator Wristband, $9.95,

with your regular SPF for superior coverage. “You can also eat some sun protection,” says Dr Lowe – and no, he doesn’t mean knocking back a bottle of Banana Boat. “Lycopene is a potent antioxidant that helps protect skin against sunburn,” adds Dr Lowe. You can take a supplement to get your fix or score a hit from tomatoes, particularly when cooked (heating releases more of their lycopene).

“HOW CAN I HELP MY SKIN AFTER I’VE BEEN IN THE SUN?” “Lots of water evaporates from the skin during sun exposure, so your skin can feel dry and sore,” says Dr Cliff. “A humectant moisturiser will slow peeling, attract water back into the skin and feel soothing.” After-sun prods often contain cooling ingredients as well, which will feel nicer than ordinary moisturiser (especially if you keep them in the fridge). “Products that contain antioxidants are useful for helping protect against and repair UV damage, so look for them in your after-suns,” says Dr Cliff. Again, you can support your suncare regimen with your diet. “Polyphenols are powerful antioxidants found in dark chocolate, green and black tea,” explains Dr Lowe. “They’re worth having in your diet to help skin repair after UV damage.”

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LookFIT SUN MYTHS – BUSTED! Brush up on your skin safety know-how MYTH: YOU DON’T NEED SUNSCREEN ON A CLOUDY DAY “UVB rays, which cause burning, are present only in summer on sunny days and they’re blocked by clouds and windows,” explains Dr Lowe. “UVA rays, on the other hand, are present year-round and penetrate clouds and windows to reach your skin. UVA rays damage collagen and are responsible for premature ageing.” To stay safe, regardless of the weather, choose a daily moisturiser or foundation with SPF 30 and UVA protection.


MYTH: YOU CAN’T GET BURNT IN THE WATER When you’re swimming outside or doing watersports you don’t notice you’re burning because you feel cooler, but water reflects UV rays onto your skin. The parts of you under the water aren’t safe either, so wear UV-protective clothing and apply a water-resistant sunscreen before hitting the waves. “Waterresistant products retain their protection properties for 40 minutes of moderate activity in water,” says Dr Williams. “However, 85 per cent of a product can be removed by towel drying, so dry then reapply.” MYTH: WINDOWS ARE PROTECTIVE As with clouds, windows may shield you from burning UVB rays, but those ageing, cancer-causing UVA rays are coming right through. “This is proven by studies linking skin cancer to driving,” says Dr Lowe. “One study looked at 85,000 cases and found most cancers were located on the driver’s side arms and face. Consider a UV filter for your car windows.”








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DON’T WASH YOUR HAIR FOR A WEEK? WF’s Jaymie Hooper breaks up with shampoo in the name of bouncier locks


second-day hair, I wasn’t too worried about looking like a post-breakdown Linsday Lohan a couple of days in, but when day four rolled around, I lost it. After half a week of workouts, getting caught in the rain and sleeping next to the sweaty inferno that is my BF, I looked like I’d taken a bath in a deep fryer. The only upside was that my ends weren’t as dry as usual, and I guess my strands felt thicker, but I wasn’t convinced these changes were worth it. Day five wasn’t much better, with my tresses looking dull thanks to all that product build-up. On day six, just before my dignity was about to call it quits, the magic happened. Okay, so my hair might not have smelled that nice, but it looked… good. More than good. The ends were shiny, the overflow of oil had stopped and, most importantly, I had body. My strands no longer felt flimsy – they felt strong, sturdy and full of volume. Usually it takes half a can of hairspray for my curls to stay in place, but all it took was a sprinkle of texture powder and a little finessing with my fingers before I felt styled enough to open Snapchat. At the end of my experiment, I lathered, rinsed and repeated faster than I ever had before, but I was so impressed with the end results that I decided to start the whole thing again. Sure, maybe by day seven I just got used to having greasy hair, but I’ve got body, and that’s something I’ve never had, so I’m going to stick with this one-or-two-daysa-week routine for a little longer. Or, at least, until I run out of dry shampoo.

SWEET SATISFACTION The beauty moments almost too good to be true Opening a new eyeshadow palette for the very first time. OMG rating:

Painting your entire nail in a sing le stroke. OMG rating:

Applying liquid eyeliner without any streaks. OMG rating:

Squeezing a fresh tube of lipg loss. OMG rating:

When your face mask hardens just a little. OMG rating:

Head to to view Jaymie’s how-to beauty videos. womensfitnessaustralia




TWO WEEKS AGO I DID SOMETHING THAT TOTALLY CHANGED MY LIFE. It was radical, entirely out of character and, dare I say, a touch risqué. Nope, I didn’t quit my job to stalk Beyoncè around the globe on her tour – I decided to not wash my hair for a week. If you feel like that little titbit wasn’t worth the three-sentence build-up, let’s agree to disagree so we can all learn about the transformative powers of skipping the suds. First things first, here’s something you should know about me: I have super-thin hair that’s dry on the ends and oily on top if I miss one too many rinses, and since I work out five days a week, I pretty much clean my hair every day. Cursed with fine hair since birth, I’d accepted that I’ll never have Victoria’s Secret-worthy waves, but after reading about one blogger’s month of no shampoo and the luscious locks she scored at the end, I decided to test the trend myself. Why would anyone follow the questionably named ‘no ’poo’ movement, you ask? In a nutshell, stripping your scalp of its natural oils (which is what happens when you wash your hair) sometimes makes it produce even more oil, leaving your tresses in a hot (greasy) mess. Skip the everyday cleanse, though, and no-wash devotees say your locks will turn from drab to I’m-readyfor-my-close-up thanks to the regulation of oil flow. Bonus side effects include serious softness (since you’re not roughing up your cuticles with chemicals) and greater ease of styling (because gritty hair holds better than hair that’s squeaky clean). After giving my strands their last wash for the next seven days, they felt like their usual limp-but-still-shiny self, so I smoothed down a few fly-aways and went on my merry way. Since I was used to working with

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TravelFIT PACK YOUR PET If the only thing putting a damper on your next Aussie vacay is the sad thought of leaving your four-legged friend behind, head over to Airbnb (, pronto. Why? ’Cause they have 12,000 pet-friendly listings so your pooch can go along for the ride. Get exploring together at these cool, fur-loving destinations:


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EAST WF’s Samera Kamaleddine took her legs for a stretch on a five-day hike along the Great Wall of China


It takes a moment to sink in. I’d paid my yuan and passed ‘Go’. I’d begun a ridiculous ascent in the form of a trillion steps (oh, my quaaaads!). But it wasn’t until I (finally) reached the summit of that stair climb that I grasped the fact I was standing atop one of the seven modern wonders of the world – the Great Wall of China. It’s even harder to lift my jaw off the ground than it is to walk those many, many aforementioned steps, because there is only one word to describe what’s before my eyes: epic. The snaking Wall beyond is mammoth. The crowds are noisy. And the view is like nothing I’ve eyed off before. A shout-out, first, to the beautiful season of autumn. Without it, there wouldn’t be a sea of orange leaves as I peer over the sides and through peepholes in the bricks. Sure, the mist is present (the smog from China’s bustling capital city, 132

Beijing, travels, sadly…) but you know what? It doesn’t take a single thing away from the spectacular sights. We (that’s me and my G Adventures tour group) have entered via Mutianyu – the longest fully-restored section of the Wall open to tourists. For the day-trippers, there’s around two hours of well-paved fun. We pass through watchtowers, climb even more steps and watch endless brick wind up into the hills ahead. Once we hit the peak of the Mutianyu section, our local tour leader, Richard – who is climbing the Wall for the 109th time on this trip – reminds us that this will be the hardest day on our five-day hike, because we ain’t stopping here. The tourists are turning back to make their journeys home, while for the 16 members of this group, our journey is just beginning. There’s a villager manning a makeshift water station with a sign that reads, “Last chance for 10km” (kinda misleading as we

later discover it’s actually the last chance ever). The crowds have well and truly cleared. The path is all ours! But it’s now a less-maintained part of the path that’s becoming more uneven underfoot. Crumbling brick forces us to get fancy with our footwork, while my core is (surely) going to look Victoria’s Secret-model good tomorrow from the numerous times I’ve had to lift myself up and over walls. Those inspirational quotes on Pinterest are always telling us not to look back in life, but this is the moment to break that rule – every few metres I stop and glance over my shoulder at the insane beauty we’ve just passed. It still feels surreal. It also feels like we just keep climbing higher and higher into the mist, but then there’s that other saying we’ve heard a bunch of times: What goes up must come down. And right now, after five hours of hiking, my little legs and elevated heart rate are thankful that it’s about to come into effect. Even more so when the descent takes us on a super-serene walk through an autumnal forest, and into a rural village where warm (albeit trickling) showers and electric blankets await us at our first guesthouse stay on this great adventure. Step count: 17,982

TravelFIT ADD TO BUCKET LIST! G Adventures offers a Walk the Great Wall of China tour from May to October each year. Head to or flick to page 130 to find out how you could win a trek for two!




There’s one thing I like less than calf tightness and that’s rain. Gah! The heavy pounding on the roof as we wake sounds like Imma-stay-in-bed rather than let’s-go-hiking weather. But after a hot brekkie (rice congee, tofu skins and spring onion pancakes), we gather our rain ponchos and head off on a morning walk on the Jiankou section. It could have been a slushy one had the downpour not kindly stopped just in time for our short hike up to the familiar brick… But, it’s still mega hard given that the Great Wall at Jiankou is wild, rugged and in ruins. Laying eyes on the first ascent, my nerves start kicking in. I’m trying to hide it from my fellow travellers – a group of worldly hikers who I suspect actually prepared for this trip, unlike me – as I now need to dig deep for some scrambling skills to climb this brokenup and loose part of the Wall. Sure, the practically vertical wall of rolling stones makes for an awesome Insta shot (which I promptly take at the base before I start to really comprehend the impending undertaking), but did I mention it’s practically vertical? And I’m supposed to climb it? No longer are my fears just reserved for the squat toilets of China. I don’t have enough time to dwell on the fear, though, as there are feet making their way into grooves in the bricks all around me and mine need to pick up the pace. My brain goes into methodical overdrive, watching where feet above me are landing into safe pockets of the wall, trying to stretch my short limbs as my hands grip for anything that will serve as a ledge. This time I’m defs not looking back. It’s hard to see where it all ends; maybe it literally goes on forever… help! My runner instincts take over and I break down the climb, employing the technique I often use to get me through a long run – just get to the next ‘tree’, then the next, and the next… And when I reach the final ‘tree’, I’m standing so triumphant above the earth that I don’t even care about the looming (and pretty steep) steps in front. Well, I care a little bit… but, you guys, I survived my first scramble (on one of the most dangerous parts of the Great Wall no less). And the Chinese whispers of a dumpling lesson on our return to the guesthouse have given me a whole lotta oomph to make it back there. Step count: 11,456 @womensfitnessau



Someone makes a joke about The Sound of Music, because the hills are alive on the half-wild, half-restored Jinshanling trail. The terrain is more mountainous, less autumn leaves. It’s an arid countryside, but still worthy of getting snap-happy (I think I’m up to 468 photos right about now…). The tight pathway is stoney, and the wind has picked up today, but it feels leisurely to cross compared to what our feet have endured previously.

“Nothing says adventure quite like walking along a slim portion of concrete with a railway line looming below you”


Bellies full of dumplings, we travelled two and a half hours by bus yesterday afternoon to our next place of rest: “China’s most attractive leisure village”. But this AM, after gorging on spring onion pancakes again (and wrapping up a few for today’s trek…), we’re only on wheels for 10 minutes to get to the next trail we’re planning to conquer. A dirt path leads us up to the Gubeikou pass, in all its ramshackle glory. Although a shorter walk (only 6km) and a friendlier incline than past days, it’s still a trickster. The stones are loose and the mist is thick on the coldest day on the Wall so far. The mist comes and goes and the train line below appears in and out of view as we heave ourselves into archways of watchtowers and through shrubbery (pulling sticks out of our hair… or maybe that’s just me…). The moments that should make me nervous – like, uh, when the walking path gets so narrow that I’m getting very friendly with the edge of the Wall – are now just adding some seasoning to the trip. 134

Sitting up on the edge of a tower, with heavy haze as the backdrop, is another seasoned moment. My legs are dangling into what seems like the abyss. It’s creepy, yet kinda beautiful at the same time. After a picnic lunch of totally traditional Chinese food (er, peanut butter sandwiches), onwards we march, up steps that are made somewhat scarier by the vapour surrounding us. We’ve no choice but to use the installed poles in the ground for support. My confidence is growing, though, just like my sense of adventure. However, my smugness backhands me one when on the journey down off the Wall to meet our bus I swiftly slip on some leaves and my backside crashes into a nice jagged rock. But nothing says adventure quite like walking along a slim portion of concrete with a railway line looming below you… only to discover there was actually a less I’m-going-to-die way to get to the bottom. So what’s the best way to forget that fright? A tai chi lesson in China’s most attractive leisure village, natch. Step count: 11,826




TravelFIT It’s like hiking a regular old trail, until you look up at a not-so-regular outlook – Great Wall as far as the eye can see! We’re wandering where nobody goes, with a view that doesn’t get old. The heavy scenery-blocking mist a thing of yesterday; we’re re-acquainted with the sights… and we take lots of moments to plonk ourselves down on the brick and take it all in. Hours have passed when we’re faced with a detour (there’s a military-restricted area at the west end), and the conclusion of Jinshanling. We’re descending off the Wall once again. This time, we’re greeted with a ‘bar’ at the base – or, you could also call it a tent selling $2 Chinese beers and coffee. After all that trail-pounding, we’ll take it! We find our way back onto the Wall, easing into restored Jinshanling where the crowds start to present themselves again. We’re now on the most hiked section, which also means an exit through modern turnstiles and gates – a reminder that this is one of the world’s great tourist attractions. A new exit also signals a new bed for the night. And although that sounds supremely enticing (I am feeling pretty buggered on day four), our attention turns to a game of Uno… When in China?! Step count: 22,973

Train for it

The fitter and stronger you are, the more you’ll enjoy your trek! Ruth Rampling, director of TrekFit Australia, shows you how to put in the training... 1 STRENGTHEN YOUR LEGS This is a definite as you’ll be climbing up and down many steps. Great strength exercises to build up the muscles in your legs are squats, lunges and deadlifts. 2 CARDIO FITNESS Avoid breathlessness with hill sprints, HIIT workouts or jump on the cross-trainer or treadmill (increasing the difficulty level to really challenge yourself). 3 UPPER BODY BOOST Remember, you’ll be carrying a day pack, so add bicep curls, tricep pushdowns and shoulder presses to your routine.


We say ‘ni hao’ to the easiest walking day of the tour. And a blue sky! This calls for a panda hat purchase pre-walk (because, well, how else am I going to keep that sun off my face?). The Wall is better restored here at Huangyaguan (home of the Great Wall Marathon) and there’s so much pretty. There are watchtowers and bright yellow flowers, and smooth paths that make our feet sing. And, what would the Wall be without a few steep staircases thrown in? But the best bit of today? We stay to watch the sun set over the Great Wall. A golden shimmer over the cliff rocks equals a magic way to finish our walk. It brings with it an element of sadness, though. On the paved and winding descent it dawns on us that this is the end of the roam for us. On the three-hour bus ride back to Beijing I remember a sign we spotted along the way: “Please take nothing but memory”. Oh GW, my old friend, I’m taking plenty of memories. The feasts, the card games, the history lessons, the near-death experiences – memories of those five days I spent trekking one of the most iconic monuments in the world. Step count: 21,543 135



E H T ove and explore the world!

Sweet-smelling voyage


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In the house

Looking to stay on the sands of the famous Bondi Beach? Set your GPS for Bondi Yoga House – a guesthouse that lends itself as an urban yoga and wellness retreat. Embrace the ‘choose your own adventure’ style and let founders Ben and Amanda whip up a tailored package just for you, whether you’re feeling an in-house yoga class or massage treatment, want to tour Bondi like a local or fancy a sweat sesh by the sea.


Take a 10-day cruise around the Iceland coast with Active Travel and you’ll be spoilt with all the crazy-good sights, like fjords, black-sand beaches, glaciers, waterfalls and barren deserts. The Iceland Circumnavigation tour also offers up swims in hot springs, guided hikes… and a round of golf in a sunken volcanic crater! Book before 31 December and you’ll score a 20 per cent discount on departures between May and September 2017.

Fuel it

Get your sweat on by checking into a select W Hotel around the world and making use of their new initiative, Fuel, which offers guests a range of high-energy workouts. Think glow-inthe-dark yoga at W Maldives (in an underground club with neon body paint!), a Muay Thai boxing class at W Retreat Koh Samui (plus a herbal sauna experience to help you recover) or outdoor bootcamp at W Singapore Sentosa Cove.

London calling

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Don’t have the cash or money to jet off to far away places? That’s what a staycation is for…





TravelFIT WHAT DO WE WANT? A vacation. When do we want it? Well, if you’re scraping the bottom of your piggy bank and staring down the barrel of a negative annual leave balance, maybe in five years? Hold up, you might not have to wait that long. According to Sarah King, travel expert for Last Minute (, you can still score a sense of escapism without forking out for a plane ticket – all you need is a staycation. Before you turn up your nose at the idea of an at-home holiday, consider this: You’ll save bucketloads of cash, cut your travel time down to practically non-existent and discover new parts of your ’hood. Plus, if 40 per cent of Aussies are embracing the staycation*, it must be worth the hype. Not sure how to have a staycation? Write out your local hit list and go from there. As King says, “Why wait until you’re on holiday to tick off your bucket list?” Instead, think about your international bucket list and work out how you can give yourself a taste of it at home. View your city like a traveller would, King tips, and you’ll come across a smörgåsbord of vacayworthy activities – kind of like these ones:


If eating is your favourite pastime, why not dedicate a whole weekend to it? Before you call up your go-to Thai joint, make a list of all the other cool cafés and restaurants you’re dying to try. Short on ideas? Check out a site like Zomato ( to find new foodie haunts in your area. After you’ve feasted your way around town, take your culinary getaway up a notch and hitch a ride to your nearest farmers’ markets. Take a stroll through the stalls, fill up a basket with whatever fresh produce takes your fancy, then grab a picnic blanket and enjoy your spoils in a nearby park.



Purchased tickets to a live gig or musical? Use your return taxi fare on a cheeky hotel visit instead, tips King. Check in, treat yourself to dinner, head out for the show, then wake up to a buffet breakfast. Does it get any better?


Switch off the telly and treat your eyes (and your grey matter) to a day of museums and art galleries. If you’re not sure where the local culture hubs are, check out Museums Galleries Australia ( au) for a list of institutions in your state. Oh, and if you’re keen to make your visits a regular thing, sign up for a membership

“Why wait until you’re on holiday to tick off your bucket list? Work out how you can give yourself a taste of it at home” – you’ll score cheaper entry and souvenirs so you can spend your cash on something else (like a shopping spree).


This just in: You don’t have to be in Hawaii to enjoy the sun, sand and surf. Have a car? Can drive to the sea? Sign up for surf lessons, then spend the night in a cosy seaside cottage you find on Airbnb ( Always wanted to visit Italy? Book in for a weekend Italian cooking course and make like you’re in Florence. You’ll be out of your comfort zone (which is what happens when you go on vacay) and you could even make new friends (sans dirty hostel). For a real international feel, check your local council’s website for any upcoming multicultural festivals and plan your staycation around them.


Whether you’re hulled up in the city or shacked up in the country, one thing’s for sure: a stellar bushwalking track isn’t far behind you in this great land of ours. Break out your boots and explore your (greater) backyard with a hike through a national park or check out AllTrails ( for a list of lesser-known paths to trek.


“If you’re saving and your budget doesn’t stretch to a holiday out of town or overseas, a staycation can be a well-deserved reward for being savvy,” says King, so go ahead and book a room somewhere a bit fancy for the night. “If your mission is to relax, put up your feet and lounge by the hotel pool, enjoy a spa treatment or any other perks your hotel offers that you wouldn’t get at home.” Don’t have enough coin for a luxe room and a luxe treatment? Do as King suggests and look on for discounted accommodation. This way you can splurge on those special extras.



Pitch a tent and set up camp in your backyard or on your balcony. “A staycation is about having a break from your everyday life and feeling like you’re on holiday,” says King, so detach from the norm and enjoy the outdoors. Bring your pillows and some



board games outside, order dinner from that new restaurant in town, have Deliveroo ( drop it to your backyard, then kick back with a cheeky sunset wine.


First things first, light those scented candles. Next, dim the lights or close the curtains and play some mellow tunes to help you relax. Take a soak in the tub and exfoliate your bod with a coffee body scrub, then get silky smooth with a body oil and creamy lotion. Invite your besties over if you feel like being social, take turns treating each other to a mani and pedi then finish off with a face massage, clay mask and cheese platter (for eating, not for wearing). If you need some solo time, pour yourself a cuppa and kick back with a good book or follow a guided meditation. Now, how’s the serenity?

Added benefits Make the most of your staycation with these simple tips ■ BE SPONTANEOUS, BUT STICK TO A SCHEDULE Sometimes the best experiences come from the unexpected, so while you don’t need to plan every activity down to the minute, treat your staycation like a real holiday by blacking out your calendar and taking care of those drab day-to-day tasks so they don’t kill your vibe. ■ DON’T FORGET TO REST “Staycations are all about having that holiday feeling,” says King. “Downtime in-between exploring your city will really help you unwind and feel relaxed.” So, you just went for a hike? Consider this your permission to nap. ■ DITCH DISTRACTIONS Turn off your phone, shut down your laptop and put your tablet to sleep. This weekend is about reconnecting with numero uno (that’s you) and your loved ones – not your 600+ Facebook friends.



Next issue


YOUR STRONGEST YEAR EVER! Boost your mind and body strength (to epic proportions) for 2017 with our new-year special. Bring on the superstrength workout and stress-less toolkit so you can kick k all off th h s.


How to ace your tennis game Brekkies that look too good to eat What your adult acne really means 140





Don’t miss it



Need to get zen? Experts from Michigan State University suggest you head to the beach. After comparing the mental health of people who have access to ocean views with people who don’t, they found that those living seaside had lower levels of psychological stress. Don’t live in that oceanfront property of your dreams? Get chilled out with one of these stress-busting guided mediations instead: 1 THE MEDITATION PODCAST ( Boasting a solid library of guided meditations, this podcast also comes with clever background beats that help switch your brain to relax mode. 2 MEDITATION OASIS ( Whether you’re new to the art of ‘om’ or a meditator from way back, this podcast has your back. 3 FRAGRANT HEART ( Take a quick time-out, find inner peace, release your muscles or meditate yourself to sleep with these easy-to-follow guides. 141


moon Tune in to your natural rhythm and feel calm and rejuvenated with this flowing moon salutation

YOU’VE HEARD OF A SUN SALUTATION, RIGHT? The strong, flowing sequence is a regular feature in yoga classes, and the perfect way to prepare you for an active session. But have you ever tried a moon salute? Unlike sun salutations, which energise and heat your body, moon salutes are calming and restorative. A moon salute invites you to become more reflective and receptive, so it’s especially suited to those times when you’re feeling stressed or depleted. Practised mindfully, it can soothe an overactive mind, rebalance your system before exhaustion sets in and replenish your energy. Traditionally practised under the moonlight, it’s great whenever you need to slow down and connect to your natural rhythm. Roll out your mat and salute the moon to wind down after work, before you go to sleep at night or any time you feel under pressure, out of balance or low in energy. This moon salutation is calming but also mildly energising, so you might like to try it in the mornings as well. HOW TO DO IT: For the first round, take two or three breaths in each pose, then follow the breathing pattern. When you become familiar with the sequence, experiment with allowing the poses to flow into each other like one continuous thread – a fluid moon dance. Repeat the complete sequence two to three times. 142





And, breathe‌ This sequence works your spine in all directions, particularly in the lateral plane. This expands the muscles between your ribs to enhance breathing.

MOUNTAIN POSE With your hands at your heart, inhale gently as you slowly take your arms out to the sides and overhead. Exhale into...

Squat down, bending your elbows. Inhale. Turn your left foot out to 90 degrees, and your right foot in slightly, and exhale into...


Extend to the left, then inhale to centre and exhale to the right. Inhale back up and step sideways with your left foot. Exhale into...





Straighten your legs and rotate your arms. Inhale, then exhale as you lower your right hand down and turn both hips to the left, pivoting on your back foot, to come into... @womensfitnessau





Keeping both legs straight, round your spine as you bring your forehead to your knee. Inhale, then exhale as you lower your right knee to the oor. Inhale into...

With your left knee bent at 90 degrees over your heel, sweep your arms up overhead. Exhale and lower both hands to the oor and pivot around to your right into...

Drop into a deep squat with your right leg extended out to the side. Inhale, lifting your hands into prayer position, then lower your hands and exhale into...




Push up through your feet and engage your thighs to come into a squat. Inhale, lifting your hands up into prayer, then lower your hands and exhale into...

Deepen your squat, extending your left leg out to the side. Inhale into prayer, then exhale as you lower your hands and pivot around to your right. Inhale into...

Lower your left knee to the ground and bend your right knee at 90 degrees. Inhale, sweeping your arms up overhead, then lower your hands and exhale into...




Straighten your legs and lower your forehead towards your right knee. Exhale, then inhale, taking your left arm in a large arc overhead into...

Keeping both legs straight, extend your arms, gazing up at your left hand. Exhale, then inhale to come up and turn out your left foot as you exhale into...

Squat down and bend your elbows. Inhale as you step your feet in so they are hip-width apart, exhale as you take your hands overhead. Inhale into...





RelaxFIT Be still When you complete the sequence, rest in extended child’s pose for a few minutes to allow your body and mind to absorb the effect of the poses.


Do this calming meditation with a moon salutation, or whenever you want to enter a quieter state of mind and tap into your softer side




Exhale to the left, inhale to centre, exhale to the right, inhale back to centre, then lower your arms and exhale into...

Press your palms together in prayer position. Pause, then repeat the whole sequence, this time leading to the right.



Sit in a comfortable cross-legged position with your hands on your thighs, then take your attention to the space between your eyebrows. Visualise a full moon on a clear night sky. See its light reflecting on the waves of the ocean as they shimmer and dance in the midnight blue, sensing how the moonlight penetrates deep into the water. ■ Be sensitive to any feelings or sensations you experience, perhaps a tingling in your forehead or a growing sense of stillness. After a few minutes, allow the image to slowly fade as you prepare to begin the moon salute. ■ After your practice, pause in mountain pose, reconnect to the image of the moon until your body is steady, then rest in shavasana, lying flat on your back with your arms out to your sides, palms facing upwards and feet comfortably apart and your ankles relaxed.



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