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from the EDITOR
THIS ISSUE WE LOVED DEPUTY EDITOR, Francesca “After a wonderful year as deputy editor, I’m leaving Your Fitness to do some travelling – it’s been a pleasure to be a part of this team and I can’t wait to read the next issue from wherever I may be!”
Welcome to YOUR FITNESS!
One of my most vivid childhood memories is falling off my bike when I was seven years old. I was riding along a country road when a stone caught in my wheel and I ended up face first in the dirt. Adorned with scratches on my arms and legs, I had to push my bike back home wiping tears out my eyes with mud-stained hands. At that age, things like that really affect you and it took me ages to get back on a bike. Even when I did, I did so hesitantly, crawling along at a snail’s pace and constantly worrying about potholes and gravel. It sounds stupid but I’ve never really regained my confidence on two wheels. Earlier this month though, my friends and I went for a long cycle ride and, despite my slight trepidation, I loved it. My home county of Suffolk isn’t known for its hills but we flew down the tracks and had great fun. I may still be a bit wobbly when I indicate and I know I will never be the next Laura Trott, but I feel as though my belief in my cycling ability has changed. The message of the story? Don’t let fear stop you from doing what you might actually really love. If you’re worried about heading to the gym or diving in the swimming pool because of that one occasion you made a fool of yourself years ago, my advice is to just give it another try. Who knows? You might even discover your new favourite exercise.
FEATURES WRITER, Jessica
“As a pescatarian, I’ve been trying to make the leap to a veggie-only palette, so I can’t wait to try it out thanks to our tips on page 83”
EDITORIAL ASSISTANT, Vicky “Want to get more from your running routine? Turn to page 41 for our round-up of the best types of interval training to suit you.”
Claire Claire Munnings Editor
YOUR FITNESS WHEREVER, WHENEVER @yourfitnessmag /yourfitnessmag
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Editor's letter.indd 1
CONTENTS October 2016
10 Fit news: A round-up of the latest fitness stories 16 Reboot your bod: Get your fitness back on track post-holiday
19 Treadmill talk: Alison Davies shares her thoughts on multi-tasking meetings
20 7 ways exercise can relieve stress: How getting active can help a bad day
22 Think pink: Show your support for breast
cancer awareness month and treat yourself with our fit kit picks
26 Trainer talk: Columnist Kristoph Thompson keeps us up to date with the latest fitness advice
30 Kirsty Gallacher: The presenter chats to us about swimming
32 Get fit in 30 minutes: Tone your whole body with our half hour workout
44 Running like a girl: Columnist Jenni Falconer fills us in on her fitness diary
57 Sporting style: Columnist Zoe Hardman puts 58 61
the latest fitness apparel to the test Beauty news: Repair summer skin and frazzled hair with these top ingredients Golden girl: Jennifer Aniston shares her secrets to being an ageless beauty
ON THE COVER 12 Cover star: Superstar Jennifer Lopez lets
us in on how she looks after her amazing bod
97 Reader offer: WIN a month’s worth of yoga classes
27 Whittle your waist: Shrink your tummy in 10 days
41 Stop the clock: Switch up your running
90 This week’s lunches, sorted:
Tasty, easy midday recipe inspiration from nutritionist Julie Montagu
routine this autumn with interval training
63 Feed your skin: Our new beauty
columnist Lisa Snowdon offers advice on skin-boosting foods
51 Ivy Park life: Say hello to Beyonce’s A/W athleisure collection
COVER STAR: Jennifer Lopez PHOTOGRAPHY: BodyLab (bodylab.com) NEXT ISSUE ON SALE: 7th October 2016
SUBSCRIBE TO YOUR FITNESS!
Become a subscriber this month and get a free Physique 57 fitness bundle, worth over £50! For details, turn to page 46.
66 Health essentials: News and expert advice to improve your wellbeing
69 Unmask your menstruation: Give
Aunt Flo the heave ho with these healthy hacks
73 Body beautiful: Our healthy living guru Amanda Byram brings us her bite-sized tips
74 HIIT it, but not too hard: How to enjoy the gains without the pain
79 Ask the experts: Our panel of specialists answer your health questions
83 10 reasons to go veggie: Slimmer, 87
healthier, sexier... why you may want to ditch your carnivorous ways Foods for fall: Introduce coconut oil to your kitchen with recipes from Lucy Bee
94 Head space: The best and latest ways to a healthy, happy mind
99 Find your workout zen: It’s time
to reclaim your exercise calm 105 Mind matters: Columnist Camilla Dallerup shares her motivation-boosting tips
111 Learn the ropes: We break down the basics of TRX training
115 Helen works it out: Columnist Helen Skelton stakes out the newest challenges
119 Fitness focus: Ideas to support your health this month
IN EVERY ISSUE
9 Mailbox: Have your say and win a prize 36 Competition: Win a place at a luxury wellbeing bootcamp!
103 Fitness freebies: Win fabulous health and fitness goodies
117 This month we’ve been: Our top rated picks of all that’s new in the fitness and health world 122 Final say: Reality star Rosie Fortescue chats to Your Fitness
YOUR FITNESS SEPT 2016 ad master_ROP 19/08/2016 16:09 Page 6
EXPERTS Introducing Your Fitness’ fantastic panel of experts whose knowledge and advice helped us create this issue
Amanda Byram is a TV presenter, and Your Fitness columnist. She shares her bite-sized health tips on page 73.
CAMILLA DALLERUP Camilla Dallerup is our celebrity NLP coach. She guides us back to the straight and narrow on page 105.
Women’s health expert and author Emma Cannon shares her top tips to beat PMS for good on page 69.
TV presenter Helen Skelton takes on the latest fitness challenge on page 115.
Jenni Falconer is a TV presenter, radio host and Your Fitness’ woman pounding the pavements. Read her latest instalment on page 44.
Radio and TV presenter Lisa Snowdon is our new beauty columnist. She reveals how to feed your skin from the inside on page 63.
Kristoph Thompson is a professional PT and keeps us in the know with his column on page 26.
Lucy Bee, qualified beauty therapist and founder of the Lucy Bee range of organic ingredients, shares recipes from her new book on page 87.
Zoe Hardman is a TV presenter and Your Fitness’ fashionista. She tries the latest gym kit on page 57.
www.yourfitnesstoday.co.uk Aceville Publications Ltd. 21-23 Phoenix Court, Hawkins Road, Colchester, Essex, CO2 8JY Tel: 01206 505900 EDITORIAL Editor: Claire Munnings email@example.com Deputy editor: Francesca Cowling firstname.lastname@example.org Features writer: Jessica Harris email@example.com Editorial assistant: Vicky Warrell firstname.lastname@example.org
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The views expressed in this magazine are not those of the publisher. If in doubt, always consult a GP or fitness professional before beginning a new exercise regime or trying any of the products or advice mentioned in Your Fitness, particularly if you have a medical condition for which it may not be advisable.
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We hope you enjoyed Your Fitness. We know lots of readers will want to hang onto this magazine for future reference, but if not, why not give it to a friend, or donate it to your local doctors’ surgery? Or, remember that magazines can be put out with your weekly recycling for collection!
Meet the experts.indd 7
YOUR FITNESS SEPT 2016 ad master_ROP 19/08/2016 16:09 Page 8
Tell us your thoughts at facebook.com/yourfitnessmag, by tweeting us @yourfitnessmag, or by writing to Your Fitness, 21-23 Phoenix Court, Hawkins Road, Colchester, Essex, CO2 8JY
Turn back time
Like many, I lead a busy life. As I have two jobs and two children to manage, time really is of the essence, so attempting to fit exercising in around my hectic timetable is not easy. With a holiday looming on the horizon and a forgotten diet, I realised that I needed help to regain some of my lost body confidence. That’s why I was so delighted when I opened up your latest issue to find your superb article Prepare to Bare (Sept 16). Finally, I now have some easy ways to tone up before my break thanks to your cut-out-and-keep plan, which I’ve laminated. Not only is it safe, it will help me to shift the excess pounds that will really make a difference when I slip on my swimwear! Stacie Thomas, North Wales
Sadly, I’m no longer as young as I once was and I’m starting to see the effects on my skin. I’ve been tempted by the latest, expensive anti-ageing face creams that promise the earth but don’t deliver, so I was very grateful to read your article Holding Back the Years (Sept 16). It was packed full of great, easy-to-follow tips that I have begun to implement to keep myself feeling youthful. Now I’ve started to go to bed earlier and I’m trying to ensure that I drink enough water during the day. I’m also incorporating weights into my gym session instead of just my usual cardio. Thanks, Your Fitness. Zara Hewitt, Brentwood
Star letter prize Get in touch with us at Your Fitness and you could win some great sporty goodies. The writer of the star letter in next month’s mag will win a 30-day supply of LQ Liquid Health Advanced Skincare, worth almost £90! Developed by health and nutrition experts and backed by clinical trials, LQ Advanced Skincare contains ingredients such as collagen and vitamin C which contribute to the maintenance of normal skin. It also has the added bonus of helping to control uncomfortable flare-ups of long-term acne, psoriasis, eczema and other skin problems. £29.99 per box (10-day supply), available in Boots stores and online at boots.com
Stretch it out
I’m a running newbie, having recently discovered the fact that it’s inexpensive, great for your health and one of the best ways to lose weight and keep it off. I’ve got friends who like running, and they’re always trim, slim, happy, centred and productive. It’s been tempting to just dart out of the door at full speed, but I know how important it is to avoid injuries. Happily, your article 5 Stretches to do Before Your Run (Sept 16) answered all of my questions about limbering up, and I now know a good warm up is one that challenges every part of your body that you use to run. Thanks to you, I feel much more confident about pounding the pavements! Kendra Aitkins, Prenton
Question of the month... We asked: What’s your post-gym beauty must-have? Definitely dry shampoo and a hairbrush to go from gym to office in style! Louise, via Facebook I never go to the gym without my favourite cleanser and moisturiser. Stephanie, via email
I always have loose powder in my bag to hide the post-workout shine. Emma, via email
Have your say…
Next month’s question is: How do you change your workout in the autumn? To take part in the Q&A, send your answers to Your Fitness, 21-23 Phoenix Court, Hawkins Road, Colchester, Essex, CO2 8JY, email us at email@example.com or contact us via facebook.com/yourfitnessmag, or tweet @yourfitnessmag
How to contact us Your Fitness, 21-23 Phoenix Court, Hawkins Road, Colchester, Essex, CO2 8JY
HOT OFF THE PRESS...
Walk the walk
Worrying new official data has shown that Britain is grinding to a halt, with the average person walking less than half a mile a day – a drop of more than a third in just three decades. This comes as a study published by The Lancet found that workers need to do an hour’s exercise to counter the impact of eight hours sitting in an office. Luckily, there are lots of small changes that you can make to fit more steps into your day, such as getting off public transport a couple of stops earlier, taking a lunchtime walk, or parking further from your destination.
Fit NEWS GET ACTIVE | GET HEALTHY | GET FIT
OUR top THREE: workout hair accessories 1 ST Y LISH 1
SECU R E 2
U N IQU E 3
Keep your tresses in check with this bold, elasticated Sweaty Betty Headband, which features raised rubber grips to hold it firmly in place and high-stretch fabric for a snug, customised fit. £10, sweatybetty.com
Get set for a seasonal workout with the Autumn Popband, the soft, no-dent hair ties that hold ponytails up tight, but leave your hair kink-free when you take them down. £6, thepopband.com
Secure your locks with a snagfree, non-slip Sweaty Betty Spiral Hair Toggle, which has a unique plastic design to make sure that your hair stays in place. £4, sweatybetty.com
THAT’S THE AMOUNT OF HEALTHCONSCIOUS BRITS WHO HAVE BEEN ON A DETOX HOLIDAY IN THE LAST 12 MONTHS
The percentage of UK adults who aren’t members of a gym but would like to join one
Minka Kelly, actress
MOVE of the MONTH:
How many calories you can burn by cleaning your bath tub for 15 minutes – and it’s great for toning your arm and shoulder muscles
Intimidated by burpees? Break yourself in gently with this beginner-level move. Both movements incorporate aerobic training and strength training into one sequence, working your cardiovascular system, upper body and legs.
THE AMOUNT OF PEOPLE IN THE UK WHO ARE CURRENTLY VEGETARIAN lindamccartneyfood.co.uk
OCTOBER >>>is the time to: …pedal away Taking place on the 1st October around northern Europe’s largest man-made lake, the Kielder Run Bike Run is a 42km duathlon in Northumberland. Almost entirely offroad, you’ll see some impressive sights on the way, including the Kielder Dam and the Bull Crag Peninsula. Find out more at kieldermarathon.com
…lace up your trainers Head to London’s Hyde Park on the 9th October to join Britain’s most beautiful city run – the Royal Parks Foundation Half Marathon. The course will take you through four Royal Parks, and you’ll take in famous landmarks, such as Buckingham Palace and the London Eye. For more information, head to royalparkshalf.com
Tinseltown / Shutterstock.com
News in NUMBERS
“Exercise is like meditation for me. When you have a good workout, it clears everything up mentally and physically, and you just have a better day”
Queen of green Natasha Corrett is hosting a supper club on the 13th October at No. 38 The Park, The Lucky Onion’s boutique townhouse hotel in Cheltenham. Determined to show that healthy eating doesn’t have to be boring, she’ll cook up a feast bursting with flavour. £60, call 01242 822 929 to book.
Held on the 16th October, the Great Birmingham Run is a 13.1 mile course around some of the city’s most iconic sights, including the Bullring and the Cadbury’s factory in Bournville. Live music and thousands of supporters will keep you motivated every step of the way. Sign up at greatrun.org
1 Start in a standing position, then squat down, placing your hands flat on the floor in front of you. Kick both of your feet back so that you finish in a plank position, with your body in a straight line. 2 Push through your feet to return to the squat position, then stand back up. Repeat 15-20 times. 3 Once you’ve mastered this move, transform it into a burpee by jumping into the air instead of simply standing back up at the end.
When you’re training, it’s important to up your intake of protein. Chickpeas are a great way to do this, particularly if you don’t eat meat, and they’re also a rich source of dietary fibre, manganese and folate. For a tasty way to get this legume into your diet, try Garbanzo dry roasted chickpeas – we love the Thai sweet chilli flavour. £1.25 for 65g or £0.99 for 30g, available in store and online at Holland & Barrett and at all good health stores.
WO AH, J-L O! With a successful career spanning almost two decades, two children and a body that defies time, Jennifer Lopez defines the term #goals. Here, the Hollywood heavyweight talks motivation, mascara and making it work
Before the days of bum implants,
but hit it she does. And hard
twerking and the Kardashian clan
– at 47-years-old her impressive
(klan?), there was only one superstar
six-pack is enough to rival that
celebrated for her notorious curves. In
of someone half her age, and then
an industry dominated by noughties
some. So, what’s her secret? Post-
waifs (we’re looking at you Christina
pregnancy triathalons and a strict
and Britney), actress-turned-singer
sugar and salt-free diet aside,
Jennifer Lopez proudly shimmied
Jennifer is also a loyal student of
her knicker-clad booty onto our
the Tracy Anderson Method and
screens in her first single, Love
swears by wellness supplement
Don’t Cost A Thing. Fast forward
15 years and Lopez has barely
UK this year, the American brand
aged a day. Gym-honed and
offers everything from fat-burning
honey-skinned, Jenny from
protein to metabolism-boosting
the block has quickly become
nutrients and prides itself on
an entertainment mega-
recognising what women really
force, divvying up her time
need (and they weren’t wrong –
between acting endeavours, a
hello, chocolate fudge flavour).
successful music career, a foray
With a tagline of “be the girl of
into television and let’s not forget
your dreams”, it’s hard not to
the sell-out Las Vegas residency
believe such a promise from
and her full-time job as a mother
the down-to-earth Latina
to eight-year-old twins Max and
from the Bronx. Jennifer
Emme. Phew! It’s a wonder that La
shares her secrets to looking
Lopez has any time to hit the gym,
great and feeling even better.
WO AH, J-L O! ON HER BEAUTY REGIME
Washing my face after training is a must as it helps keep my pores clean and my skin feeling healthy. Then I’ll usually put on moisturiser, sunscreen and maybe just a little make-up if I’m going out, or a moisturiser and eye cream if it’s the evening.
ON FINDING MOTIVATION
ON WORKING WITH BODYLAB
My number one goal with BodyLab was to focus on the specific needs of women. I’m so proud that our formulas were designed by women, for women so there’s a deeper understanding. A lot of us are worried about taking protein but there’s no added creatine in these supplements so you won’t bulk up. It’s just simple blends created with nutrients to help women fuel their individual fitness goals, get lean, and feel amazing.
ON KEEPING FIT
I always start my day with a BodyLab TastyShake in the morning, a healthy lunch, and then another protein shake for dinner. That last shake of the day is key, because when you’re dieting it seems like you’re always your hungriest at night, so having some calorie-smart protein can help fill you up and kill those night time cravings which can set you back.
ON WORKING OUT
I love the way working out makes me feel, so I try to keep my body hydrated and well rested after every workout so I’m ready to hit it hard again the next day. I drink plenty of water, fuel my body with healthy foods and make it a priority to get eight hours of sleep a night. I also love to relax with my kids after a workout and share a healthy snack with them!
I definitely have days when things are hectic and I’m travelling all over where I just wake up feeling worn out. But even when I’m not feeling so great, I make myself get a workout in, because I know that after a good workout I’ll feel revved up and great about myself.
ON TRAVELLING LIGHT
I always have lip gloss with me on a flight, because it just adds that little bit of shine that makes you look dressier and feel gorgeous. And I usually wear mascara when I’m travelling, but that’s it! I like to keep things casual and simple when I’m flying as it can be so dehydrating.
Who better to whip our butts into shape than Jennifer’s former personal trainer David Kirsch (davidkirschwellness.com)? SUMO LUNGE TO A SIDE KICK WITH A SQUAT JUMP
Stand in a sumo position with your feet slightly wider than shoulder-width apart, knees bent, and body weight over your heels. Take a large step sideways with your right leg, bringing your right knee in toward your chest and then back over to the right in one smooth and continuous movement. As soon as your right foot touches the ground, bring your knee back into your chest and complete a side kick, kicking your right heel out to the side. Lower your right leg to the floor, returning to sumo position. Squat down while keeping the weight in your heels and stick out your bum. Keep your knees directly above (not in front of) your toes. Spring up while thrusting your arms overhead. Land on your heels, rolling forward onto your toes. Repeat with a sumo lunge and side kick with your left leg and another squat jump. Continue alternating right and left until you have completed 15 lunges on each side and 30 squat jumps.
Jennifer wowing the crowds at the FIFA 2014 World Cup in Brazil
Start in a plié squat position with feet wider than your hips, feet pointing out, your hands on your hips and your thighs parallel to the floor. Stay engaged in the plié squat as you waddle forward, stepping your left foot in front of your right, then your right foot in front of your left. Keep your knees out and aligned with your toes, your weight in your heels and your bum sticking down and out throughout the exercise. Take five total steps forward, then reverse. That’s one rep. Repeat five times.
CLOCKWISE FROM TOP
REVERSE CROSSOVER LUNGES TO A LATERAL LUNGE
Start in a standing position. Lunge forward, across the opposite leg. Without pausing, step into a lateral lunge to the side. Your anchor leg should be held straight in a 90 degree angle.
Completing the Nautica Malibu Triathlon In rehearsals for her All I Have show in Las Vegas With children Max and Emme Crossing the finishing line at the Nautica Malibu Triathlon
D O B R U YO WORDS: Sarah Ivory
If you’ve had far too much fun soaking up the sun and now working out feels like a chore, it’s time to get back on the fitness wagon!
erhaps it’s the lure of the sun lounger, or maybe the prospect of hitting the gym in the heat – whatever the reason, there’s no denying that we sometimes take our foot off the fitness pedal during the summer months. A new survey from British Military Fitness even shows that one in four of us believe that our summer holiday is responsible for weight gain. But don’t panic – we have just what you need to embrace exercise again. From smart training, to rediscovering your workout mojo, here’s everything you need to know to get back into fitness mode after months spent sipping sangria and sunbathing.
TAKE IT EASY
After a holiday, it can be tempting to throw yourself back into a workout routine, but it’s important to take baby steps. “Don’t try and do things at the intensity you were doing them at before,” says Team Reebok UK’s Bex Hall. “If you do, you’re likely to be very sore for the next few days. Take the resistance of your weights down a bit and be sure to stretch out – travelling can really make your body seize up!”
CELEBRATE THE SUMMER
Anyone who’s been on holiday will know that some of the best memories are made abroad, but there’s no need to let the feel-good factor fade with your tan. Follow these exercise tips from Sonique Smith, Clubbercise lead master trainer, to keep the summer alive.
#1 As soon as autumn arrives, the shops are filled with grey and black clothing, which is enough to send anyone into hibernation mode! Treat yourself to some brightly-coloured gymwear, as you don’t need to dull down just because the sun has gone in. #2 Been on a girls’ holiday? Reunite with your pals for a group HIIT class. Try 30-second drills of burpees, press-ups, squats and lunges taking 10 seconds of rest between sets. Mix things up by adding some dance steps and raving away before the next set. #3 For the ultimate Balearic vibe, stretch your muscles out to a chill-out track. The beats will instantly whisk you away to sunnier climes, and you’ll feel relaxed and accomplished after your workout.
SWITCH IT UP
If you’re struggling to get motivated, ask a personal trainer at your local gym to revamp your workout programme. “Now is the best time to reassess your fitness goals, address any specific areas that you want to change and set new targets,” says Louise Day, wellness director at Champneys. “It’s also a great time to try new classes and re-evaluate what your body needs.” Gyms and studios tend to change class timetables after the summer, so now’s the time to try something new!
top STORY TRAIN LIKE A NEWBIE
It doesn’t hurt to ease back into exercise gently. Gradual progress will give your body a chance to regain strength and improve its aerobic capacity, not to mention help to get you feeling excited about activity again. Choose low intensity activities (think: 50-60 percent of maximum ability) and gradually increase the intensity over the next few weeks. Why not try one of these? WALKING Not only is it kind on your body but it’s also a cheap way to burn calories, blitzing around 60-70 calories in 30 minutes when moving at a moderate pace.
HATHA YOGA A great way to increase strength and flexibility after a period of inactivity, hatha yoga will help you to get back into the habit of exercising. It involves a variety of seated and standing asanas, or poses, that will improve full-body strength. BODYWEIGHT MOVES Go back to basics at the gym by doing the age-old bodyweight moves like pushups, squats, lunges, inverted rows and pull-ups. Doing these moves will give your body a chance to build a foundation of strength again.
SHOP FOR SWEATS
Few things boost gym motivation better than new workout togs. It’s simple – look good when you exercise and you’ll feel good when you exercise. Follow these shopping tips from Inspired by Lorna Jane Clarkson. PICK & CHOOSE: You don’t need to follow every trend. Find the ones that work for your style and personality and ditch the rest. SIGNATURE PIECES: Think Audrey Hepburn with her cropped pants and ballet flats, or Kylie Minogue with her heels. Find your signature piece or accessory and wear it. STRONG CUTS: What are your best assets? Your toned arms, defined back, long legs? Choose pieces, colours and looks that play up your assets and play down your not so fabulous bits.
HAVE SOME FUN
Don’t put too much pressure on yourself to return to your pre-holiday weight. Enjoy exercising again by following a routine that you love and try these feel-good workout tips from Mark Wood at British Military Fitness. GET OUTSIDE “It is much better for you to breathe in fresh air compared to air conditioning, especially if you're stuck in a gym with loads of germs floating around. Research shows you can burn up to 30 percent more calories doing a workout outdoors compared to doing it indoors.” TRAIN WITH OTHERS “Having a training partner or group will help you to stay on the fitness wagon. Others can help you stay motivated, and working out with friends creates a great social environment that means you can have some great fun, too.”
You’ve downloaded workout music and bought some new kit, now all you need to do is ditch holiday mode and get back to exercising. If you’re struggling to get going, try these motivation tips from Niko Algieri, owner of fitness studio Equilibrium. EAT: If your holiday diet was pasta and cocktails, you need to get back on the health wagon. This will immediately boost your energy and ready your body for activity. Too busy to cook fresh? Invest in a healthy food delivery service. AIM: Without a goal, you’ll procrastinate about hitting the gym. Set a new goal, whether that’s a weight target, exercise aim or to fit into an old pair of jeans that are a bit snug. STRETCH: Over the holiday weeks, you’ve let your flexibility slide. Your glutes, hips and hamstrings will feel stiff, which can be very demotivating. Start a good stretching programme to loosen up and get ready for those squats!
3 OF THE BEST DANCE WORKOUTS
Take your moves from the club floor to the gym floor at one of these waist-whittling dance workouts. CLUBBERCISE – With clubbing beats and glow sticks, Clubbercise is a great cardio workout that burns around 500 calories per class. Find a class near you at clubbercise.com CIZE – From Insanity creator Shaun T, this dance-based workout is sure to make you sweat. Expect professionally choreographed dance routines. beachbody. co.uk/on-demand GLOW – If you’re a Fitness First member, this 40-minute, spin bike party, which uses glow-in-the-dark Velobells, will bring the nightlife to your exercise regime. fitnessfirst.co.uk
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your fitness ASKS
TREADMILL talk Alison Davies shares her thoughts on multi-tasking meetings Spending the majority of our working life sitting, glued to a computer screen or stuck in back to back meetings may pay the bills but it could be detrimental to our health. With work place inactivity cited as one of the main causes of lifestyle health conditions such as obesity, diabetes and heart disease, the wide-spread health warnings aren’t unfounded. But how feasible is increased activity when the nature of an office environment tend to be stationary? Although a quick lunch time dash to the gym seems a good idea in theory, the length of breaks varies from company to company and squeezing in a HIIT session could induce more stress than benefit. However this could be about to change thanks to a recent study published by the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine entitled ‘Opportunities For Increased Physical Activity In The Workplace: The Walking Meeting’. Its main focus was to look at ways of preventing chronic disease by introducing a healthier approach to the average working day to get us moving. The results found that if we swapped one seated meeting per week for a walking one our physical activity levels could increase by 10 minutes. Over a period of time and
with regular bouts of brisk walking incorporated into the working day, it’s possible to extend our life expectancy by up to three years. Walking has always been one of my favourite forms of exercise. But it’s not a leisurely stroll that gets my fitness levels up – I like to push myself and see how fast I can walk, even timing it to find my personal best. There’s nothing more invigorating than striding forwards, breathing deeply to clear your mind in the fresh air. The very act of walking is not only a great balancer, it also gives you the space to think and take time out. While this could work in your favour by encouraging new ideas and suggestions, it could also become harder to concentrate on the issues raised. Then there’s the problem of taking notes. I’m not sure how easy it would be to handle an iPad whilst walking at break neck speed, but I’d be prepared to give it a try. Let’s face it, opportunities for physical activity in the office are limited and if walking meetings are feasible and can have a positive effect on our fitness levels, health and overall wellbeing, surely that’s got to be worth getting up off our chairs for!
“I like to push myself and see how fast I can walk, even timing it to find my personal best”
Treadmill Talk.indd 1
In the modern world, stress is unfortunately a familiar and sometimes constant companion. It can have serious effects on your health, but luckily there are ways to relieve it. We take a look at how getting active can help you leave a bad day behind…
YOU CAN CATCH UP ON YOUR SHUT EYE
Leading a busy life often means that you end up skimping on sleep. You know how much you should be getting (between seven and nine hours a night), but achieving that seems impossible when you’re lying in bed at 3am stuck in the vicious cycle of having hundreds of thoughts whizzing around your brain, aware of the fact that you should be asleep and feeling stressed out that you aren’t. Here’s where exercise steps in – research shows that engaging in regular activity can help to improve your slumber, meaning that you have one less thing to worry about.
YOU CAN GET CONNECTED
Combining exercise with seeing friends can help to improve your mood and decrease your stress levels by simply boosting your social activity. Consider inviting your bestie along for your next run, or joining a group class at your local gym. As an added bonus, a survey of 1,000 women found that 64 percent said they work harder when training with friends, and 31 percent consider the actions of pals the best motivation to stay in good shape. The research also showed that during an average workout, women who exercise with others burn up to 236 calories, compared with 95 for those who go it alone.
IT LOWERS YOUR CORTISOL LEVELS
When you’re stressed, your body produces the hormone cortisol. This is what’s needed in a fight-or-flight situation, as it helps to maintain blood pressure, but today’s lifestyle often means that the feeling of stress never ends. In response, your body releases cortisol continuously, leading to serious issues including digestive problems and an increased risk of depression. Working out decreases the amount of the hormone in your bloodstream, leading to a reduction of stress symptoms – and the Internet Journal of Allied Health Sciences and Practice reports that aerobic exercise had the greatest effect on lowering levels.
YOU’LL FEEL AND LOOK GOOD IT’S LIKE MEDITATION IN MOTION If you need an escape from the day’s irritations, several laps in the pool or a fast-paced game of tennis could be the answer. As the Mayo Clinic explains, this form of active mindfulness will mean that you’ll be solely focused on a single task, concentrating only on your body’s movements. Plus, the resulting energy and optimism will help you to remain calm and clear in everything you do. Harvard Medical School agrees: “Exercise is play and recreation; when your body is busy, your mind will be distracted from the worries of daily life and will be free to think creatively.”
A great benefit of using exercise as a tool to reduce stress is that you’ll also shrink your waistline, tone up and increase both your strength and stamina along the way, meaning that your self-image will improve and your self-esteem will receive a boost. Even better, your newly discovered energy will help you to succeed in other areas of your life, and the discipline of keeping to a regular workout schedule will provide you with a structure and aid you on your way to achieving other important goals.
IT BOOSTS YOUR MOOD
Ever experienced a ‘runner’s high’? You can thank your endorphins, which are your brain’s happy chemicals. As your body’s natural painkillers and mood elevators, they’re responsible for the feelings of relaxation and optimism that you have after a hard workout. A study published in the Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports tracked two groups of office workers, with one group walking for 30 minutes three times a week and the other doing no exercise. The first group reported being considerably more enthusiastic, less tense and generally more relaxed and able to cope than the non-walking individuals, meaning that just 30 minutes of physical activity boosted their moods.
YOU’LL BE MORE RESILIENT
In the long-term, exercise can improve your resiliency, as the American Psychological Association reported that the more sedentary you are, the less efficiently your body responds to stress. Fit people are more likely to handle the effects on their health that stress has, and raising your heart rate can actually reverse the damage to the brain caused by stressful events, according to expert Matthew Stults-Kolehmainen. One study even found that exercise was significantly more effective than tranquilisers for reducing anxiety associated with prolonged stress.
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YOUR FITNESS SEPT 2016 ad master_ROP 19/08/2016 16:09 Page 24
your fitness REPORT
Stay strong with the latest news, reviews and workouts
Want to achieve more when you work out? New research by the University of Freiburg’s Department of Sport Science in Germany has found that people benefit more from exercise when they believe it will have a positive effect. For the study, the researchers asked 76 men and women to exercise for 30 minutes on a bicycle. Beforehand, they were split into two groups and shown either a short film that praised the beneficial outcomes of cycling on health or not. They found that the people who already thought that the physical activity would have good effects before participating in the test enjoyed the exercise, improved their mood, and reduced their anxiety more than the less optimistic people.
Your Fitness Says... USE THIS TO YOUR ADVANTAGE WHEN LOOKING FOR MOTIVATION FOR YOUR NEXT WORKOUT – YOU’LL BE MORE LIKELY TO ROUSE YOURSELF OFF THE SOFA IF YOU KEEP ALL OF THE POSITIVE EFFECTS OF EXERCISE IN MIND YourFitness 25
Top Top form FORM
trainer talk Our PT keeps us up to date with the latest fitness news and advice
recent study of 1,000 UK mothers revealed that a surprising 67 percent do not feel confident enough to wear a swimsuit, and it appears to be having an impact on the swimming abilities of our nation’s youngsters. Further stats from the same survey found that more than half of UK mothers feel put off teaching their child to swim because of fear of being seen in a swimsuit, and 38 percent admit to never taking their child to the pool. The survey, conducted by leisure operator Everyone Active, correlates female body confidence as directly proportional to their children’s ability to swim. A self-conscious 65 percent of those surveyed revealed they feel judged when they put on a swimsuit or bikini, with just under half (42 percent) describing it as ‘awkward’ while a further 30 percent labelled the experience as ‘horrible’. It also emerged that women don’t start to accept their bodies and feel happy in their swimwear until they reach 27 – although 79 percent said they still don’t feel comfortable being naked in a public changing room. Rebecca Adlington, who is widely known for her support of upping the standard of children’s swimming, supports the notion that more must be done to tackle the pressing issue of female
body confidence, particularly when it starts to affect such a fundamental skill as swimming. In response to these findings, Everyone Active has introduced women-only swim sessions at centres around the country, as well as a relaxed approach to swimwear, meaning that women can swim in whatever they feel comfortable in – shorts and t-shirts allowed! Source: Everyone Active
Hit a plateau in the pursuit of a pull-up or push-up? The answer could be Accentuated Eccentric Loading, after a new study has shown its effectiveness. For those of you who haven’t heard of the term, it refers to the lowering part of an exercise and suggests that making more of this could boost your workout. To put it into practice try starting at the top of the full push-up exercise then lowering your chest towards the floor for a count of three. Then place your knees on the floor and perform a modified version of the push-up to return to the start. The same principle can be applied to a pull-up. Jump up to the top of the pull-up (using a step or box to help if necessary) then lower yourself down for a count of three. Jump back up to the top and repeat.
Eight portions of fruit and veg a day can make you happier according to research from Warwick University. Happiness increased incrementally for each extra daily portion of fruit and vegetables up to eight portions per day. Source: American Journal of Public Health
These two explosive moves are great for getting your heart rate up and releasing stress-busting hormones. Try doing six to 10 reps of each exercise then resting for 30 seconds and repeating five times in total. You should land softly and quietly on the balls of your feet. Stop the set and rest if you find your landings getting louder.
SQUAT JUMP WITH TURN � Begin standing with feet shoulder
width apart then lower into a squat position, taking your arms down towards the floor. � Jump up, swinging your arms up towards the ceiling and rotating a quarter turn to the right. � Land softly then lower into a squat once more, jumping up and rotating to the left.
DONKEY KICK � Begin in a push-up position with
your hands directly under your shoulders and body in a straight line from head to toe. � Keeping your legs together, kick both legs into the air, bending your knees to bring them towards your chest. � Straighten your legs a little as you descend to land softly on the balls of your feet. Walk or jump your feet back to the start and repeat.
Kristoph - trainer talk.indd 1
WHITTLE YOUR WAIST IN ten days Fifty different exercises. Five moves a day. One twenty minute workout. Letâ€™s get started!
shrink your waist.indd 3
FORM hen it comes to toning up, a long term fitness and nutrition plan is the best way to go – but we’re only human and sometimes despite all our good intentions that big event or holiday rolls round sooner than we expected and panic ensues. If this sounds familiar then fear not, as we’ve spoken to the expert in getting fit fast, founder of F45 Training (f45training.co.uk) Rob Smyth, who’s put together a belly-blasting 10-day routine for you to get stuck into.
Dumbbell (DB) renegade rows: Begin in the plank position, then row up the DBs to the lats one arm at a time. Side plank hold with lateral raises: In a side plank position with your feet stacked on top of each other, raise the DB just before 90 degrees then slowly bring it back down.
Crunch to jab: Start lying on the floor, crunch up then punch forwards twice. Ground and pound: On your knees, throw downward punches toward the floor (without actually touching it).
Lateral burpees: A variation of the regular burpee, bring your legs to one side as you extend them, then bring them back toward your hands before jumping.
HOW IT WORKS:
Each day you will perform two superset exercises, (two exercises back to back), followed by a finisher move. You will perform each superset for 40 seconds followed by 20 seconds of rest for four laps, resulting in 16 sets in total. At the end of this, you’ll perform the finisher move twice following the same 40/20 rule. The workout length in total should be 18 minutes (18 sets of 40 seconds on and 20 off.) Grab a variety of weights to work with.
Jack knives: Start lying on the floor with arms and legs extended. Flex your core and raise your arms and legs until your hands reach your toes, then lower back down. Frozen V-sit: Hold the position above, keeping your core tight.
Rotational wood chops: Stand with feet hip-width apart,
holding a weight near one knee, then twist and rotate it up to your opposite shoulder. Reverse lunge and twists: With the weight held out in front of you, lunge backwards, twisting your upper body toward your front leg.
Vertical jumps: Hold onto the weight and jump as high as you can on the spot. Squat as low as you can when you land.
SUPERSET 1 Kettlebell (KB) swings: Start with the KB as high as possible between your legs. Thrust your hips forward and flex your glutes as much as possible to raise the KB up. Kettlebell side leans: Holding the KB in one hand, slowly bend to one side then raise back up using your oblique muscles. Repeat on other side. SUPERSET 2 Push ups: Keep your hands slightly wider than shoulder width and elbows pointing 45 degrees towards the back. Drop on to your knees if needed. Plank hold: Squeeze your abs the whole time, keeping your elbows below your shoulders. FINISHER Broad jumps: Stand with feet slightly apart, knees bent. Swing your arms to propel you forward as far as possible.
SUPERSET 1 Moving plank: Begin in the plank position on your forearms, then straighten your arms one at a time using your triceps. Once both arms are extended, bend them back down. Hip thrust hold: Start with your shoulder blades against a bench, with your arms spread across it and knees bent to 90 degrees. Squeeze your glutes, lift your hips and hold for a few seconds. SUPERSET 2 Mountain climbers: Begin in plank position on your hands, then bring one knee up toward your chest at a time. Go as fast as you can. Everest climbers: A mountain climbers variation, this time the foot goes outside of the knee. Go as fast as you can from side to side. FINISHER Bear crawl: On all fours, stay as low to the ground as you can and move forward using feet and hands.
shrink your waist.indd 4
Overhead sit ups: With a DB in each hand, crunch up then press them up overhead. Hollow rock hold: Lie on the ground with your lower back in contact with the floor, arms extended and legs straight. Hold this position.
Dumbbell sumo deadlift: Stand with your feet very wide apart with a DB on the floor between them. Keep your chest up and back flat as you push through the legs then squeeze your glutes to raise back up, lifting the DB. Dumbbell goblet squat: Hold the DB like a cup as you squat, keeping your chest up, then raise back up using your legs.
Squat truck driver: Hold the squat position at the bottom, and turn a weight from left to right, keeping your arms extended out. Russian twists: Sat on the floor with your legs raised if possible and twist the weight from side to side of your body.
Dumbbell hooks: Perform boxing hooks (punching forwards) with a DB in each hand. Dumbbells uppercuts: Perform boxing uppercuts (punching upwards) with a DB in each hand.
Burpees to punches: Burpee with the DBs, punching four times as you come back up.
Split squat: Position yourself in a lunge position with the back leg elevated and a DB in each hand. Raise the back knee up and down. Glute bridges: Lie with feet hip-width apart and heels near glutes. Place your DBs on hips then drive through heels to raise hips off floor, pause at top and slowly lower back to mat.
Bicycle crunches: In a crunch position with a DB in each hand, raise your legs up in a cycling motion, bringing your left knee to right elbow.
Raising side plank: Start in the plank position on your hands, then raise your left hand and right leg. Repeat on the other side. Lateral shoot through: Start sat on the floor with your left leg extended and right leg bent. With one hand behind you on the floor and one in the air, twist your hips to move to the other side. Try to go as fast as possible.
Dead ball slams: Raise the ball over your head and slam it down as hard you can. Squat to pick it up and repeat.
Bag power clean: Stand holding a weighted bag touching the floor, keeping your back straight, then thrust your hips forward to bring the bag up to your forearms. Leg raises: Lying down, hold the bag overhead as a counter weight and raise hips off the floor.
Squat to press: Holding two DBs resting on your shoulders, squat down, and as you push from the legs, press the DBs up overhead. Overhead walking lunges: Hold the DBs overhead and lunge forward, moving across the room.
Jumping Jacks: With the DBs still in your hands, open your feet and arms at the same time, then jump them back together.
Medball push ups: Perform a push up with one hand on the medball, then roll the ball to the other hand and repeat. Double mountain climbers: A variation on normal mountain climbers, this time bring both feet up at the same time.
Ice skaters: Jump from one foot to the other, swinging your arms across your body. Speed skater: Holding DBs in each hand, rotate your body in order to reach your opposite foot with one hand.
Plank transfer sideways: Hold the plank position on your hands, with one DB on the floor on one side of your body. Drag it to the other side using the opposite hand, then repeat on the other side. Plank transfer up and down: Same as above but this time drag the DB forward and back.
Bench hops: Hold the bench at the top, then jump both feet at the same time to the other side.
TOP TIP Make
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Walk in/out: Start in a push up position, then walk back in raising your hips and keeping your legs straight, touch your toes then go back down. Push ups to T-rotation: Perform a push up (on knees if needed), then twist one arm holding a DB toward the sky.
High knees: Jog with high knees on the spot, as fast as possible.
has helped me
TONE UP ”
We talk to Kirsty Gallacher about why it’s time to jump in the pool and she shares a swimming workout that will blast fat fast
resh from a holiday in Sardinia with her family and buzzing with energy, Kirsty Gallacher barely stops to take a breath when we catch up with her on a sunny day in August. The 40-yearold Sky Sports presenter and former Strictly Come Dancing contestant has long been known for her slim and toned physique and she takes her health and fitness seriously. “Exercise for me is really vital,” she explains. “Not only do I like to feel strong and look toned, but fitness is good for your mind and it makes me feel great. Plus, I'm very energetic and need to put that energy somewhere,” she laughs. Alongside her presenting work, Kirsty is currently an ambassador for Speedo and for the past few months she’s been travelling around the country promoting the swimwear brand’s Dive In campaign which aims to get adults into the water. With 10,000 free swimming sessions being offered at local leisure centres nationwide, it’s a huge drive and it’s clearly an area that the mum-of-two is very passionate about. “I've always been into swimming and used to swim a lot when I was younger,” she explains. “When I was growing up I was lucky enough to have a pool at home and I was a bit of a water baby – in fact all of us Gallacher kids were. I really enjoyed it and did butterfly and front crawl at school too. Both my sons are strong swimmers and I think it's really important to teach children how to be safe in the water from a young age.”
Nowadays, she swims twice a week and uses it to complement her weight training and sessions with her personal trainer. “The swimming that I've been doing has been brilliant and it’s worked really well alongside my other training. Since I’ve been in the water more, I've noticed that my muscles have been toning up quicker while I’ve been doing my weights training and I’ve definitely improved my cardio fitness too. “What I love about swimming is that it can offer you whatever you want,” she adds. “You can use it as a cardio session to get your heartrate up by doing lengths and really just going for it, or you can go in the pool for a relaxed stretching session. You can use the water to sort your body out and it just feels like rehab. I have a bit of an arm injury – I had a bad bout of tennis elbow which came from my gym work a few years ago - and sometimes it rears its ugly head – on these occasions I get in the pool and work on my arms. Stretching them out in the water feels really nice.” Her advice for people who are hesitant about getting into the pool is to start slowly. “Begin by doing 20 lengths and then slowly up it till you’re doing 50,” she advises. “You can do it at any speed and using whatever stroke you like and you’ll soon see improvements.” And, most importantly of all – let any anxiety go. “A lot of people are very body conscious and if they haven't swum for years it can feel quite scary getting into a swimming
costume or bikini and getting in the water. I do understand that,” she says. “But once you get past that and find a nice local pool, it's about letting go of your inhibitions and just diving in. Everyone's in the same boat, if you don’t mind the pun. Everyone has the same concerns and fears and no-one will be looking at you – they’re all concentrating on their own worries and their own goals. Once you’ve done it the first time it will get easier too and you’ll soon realise just how beneficial swimming can be.” Kirsty Gallacher is an ambassador for Speedo’s Dive In campaign, which is offering 10,000 free swim fit sessions across the UK from May – October to help adults improve their technique and fitness. Join the Swim Movement and sign-up at speedo.co.uk/ Dive-In
At a normal pace, complete 200m in breaststroke and 50m in front crawl.
Complete 300m with a kickboard at a normal pace, allowing yourself a 45 second rest afterward. Kickboards can help you target your lower body, helping you work on your leg strength and improve your kick technique. Follow with a 100m easy and relaxed swim in a stroke of your choosing.
calories! Try Kirsty's swimming workout to get fit fast
Complete 300m pull set with pull buoys between your thighs at a normal pace, allowing yourself a 45 second rest afterward. Pull buoys allow your arms to work independently, pulling your body through the water. Follow with a 100m easy and relaxed swim in a stroke of your choosing.
Complete 200m in front crawl, then 100m in breaststroke both at a normal pace, allowing yourself 20 seconds of rest after each 100m.
Complete 200m freestyle at a slow pace, in an easy and relaxed manner.
3 ways to IMPROVE YOUR
SWIMMING • Use training aids: Use a kickboard to isolate leg movements and improve leg stroke and a pull buoy to improve arm technique. • Practise your breathing: Practise blowing bubbles underwater to acclimatise yourself
with breathing below the surface. Once you are confident with this, empty your entire lung capacity below water. This regulated breathing allows you to take more technical, sustained strokes. • Master front crawl: Front crawl, or ‘freestyle’ is the best stroke to do when swimming for fitness. It uses all major muscle groups and boosts cardio fitness and endurance. Despite being the fastest, most continuous stroke, crawl is more economical in energy expenditure than breaststroke.
Top Top form FORM
Get fit in 30 minutes!
Having a busy day at work? Worried that you won’t have time for a good workout? Fear not, as this routine tones your whole body in half an hour
his workout has been constructed to get you moving, get you working and ultimately have you feeling great in just half an hour. Containing a variety of different exercises, it will work your lower and upper body, as well as your core, and is broken down into sections focusing on each initial muscle group. Performing supersets and tri-sets allows you to save time and be efficient with your workout, meaning you have no excuse not to do it!
GUIDELINES • You will need a mat, two dumbbells, two kettlebells and a medicine ball. Be sure to choose a weight that isn't too easy for you, or too heavy. • Warm up before working out by doing five minutes of light cardio, such as using a step up box. • Stretch the target muscle groups for around five to 10 minutes, as this will increase the blood flow to the area and allow the muscle to stretch and flex appropriately. • Before the workout, go through each exercise for one round of 30 seconds just to get yourself used to the moves and frequency. • Cool down with five minutes of gentle cardio, such as light walking or stepping, to regulate blood flow. • These workouts are designed for all but everyone is different, so if you feel you need to stop and rest for a few seconds or if one exercise doesn’t feel right, stop and move on to the next one.
Upper Body Section Walk-down press ups (SUPERSET PART 1) Perform 15 reps before moving straight onto the next exercise.
Start in an upright position, standing with feet shoulder width apart with a neutral spine and tighten your core. Walk your hands down your body and out in front of you so you are fully extended and in a press up position. Keep your core tight, bum down low and stomach up. With your arms parallel to your shoulders, drop down until your chest is two inches from the floor. Walk your way back up.
easy home WORKOUT
Moving plank (SUPERSET PART 2) Perform this for 30 seconds.
As soon as you finish the last press up from the previous exercise, go back down into the press up position. Start your stopwatch and proceed to go up and down from plank position to press up position, from your forearms to palms on floor.
Dumbbell shoulder press (SUPERSET PART 1) Perform 20 reps before moving straight onto the next exercise.
1 2 3
Start either standing or seated on a bench with a neutral spine, and both dumbbells resting just above each shoulder and palms facing in front of you. Extend your arms fully, pressing the dumbbells up above your head, and then count three seconds down as you bring the dumbbells down to the start position. After you have completed the first 10 reps, perform another 10 reps with a normal pace up and down.
Behind head extension (SUPERSET PART 2) Perform this for 30 seconds.
Stand with your legs slightly apart, a dumbbell in each hand. Raise the dumbbells, then slowly lower them behind your head. Hold for a couple of seconds then slowly raise them back up to the starting position.
Top Top form FORM
Core Section Toe touches (TRISET PART 1) Perform 20 reps before moving straight onto the next exercise.
Start with your upper torso and back relaxed on the floor, with your legs vertical in the air above you. Extend your arms out and crunch up using your upper abdominals and try to tap your toes, then relax back down to the starting position.
Ball throws (TRISET PART 2) Perform for 30 seconds before moving straight onto the next exercise.
Sitting upright, cross your legs over one another, taking both legs slightly off from the floor. Lean back, so you feel tension in your core and when youâ€™re ready, carefully throw the medicine ball straight up in the air, catching it when it comes back down.
Crunches (TRISET PART 3) Perform 20 reps.
Lie on your back and bring both of your legs off the floor, bent at a right angle. Sit up as far as you can to the knees, and on every fifth rep hold the position for five seconds.
easy home WORKOUT
Lower Body Section
Reverse squat-lunge (SUPERSET PART 1) Perform 15 reps before moving straight onto the next exercise.
Start in a standing position, keeping a neutral spine and tight core, then squat down just below parallel, putting all emphasis on the heels. After you squat, stand up then bring one leg behind the other, lunging backwards. Once you have lunged both sides, this is one rep.
Squat taps (SUPERSET PART 2) Perform for 30 seconds.
Start standing with legs shoulder-width apart and pick up two kettlebells. Squat down, and place the weights on the floor, then jump up. As you land, grab the weights again and resume into normal squat.
Glute kickbacks Perform 30 reps on each leg, then 25 on each and finish with 20 reps on each.
1 2 3
Go on all fours with your knees in line with your hips. Take one leg off the floor and bring it in tight to your chest. Then, extend the same leg out fully, pushing it high above your back, activating your glute muscles.
Personal trainer: Alex Millington, Hair and make-up: Jo Adams (hairandmakeupatelier.com), Model: Amanda Piery, W Model Management, Clothing and trainers: Adidas, Ellesse, Equipment: Dumbbells: studio's own, Kettlebells and medicine ball: Physical Company (physicalcompany.co.uk), Studio: Cliqq Studios (cliqq.com)
A PLACE ON A WELLBEING BOOTCAMP! We’ve teamed up with luxury spa brand Champneys to offer two lucky Your Fitness readers a place on a life-changing health regime!
programme designed to teach you the correct skills in health, lifestyle, nutrition and fitness which can then be incorporated into your everyday life long after, the new and improved Champneys bootcamp programme will help you kickstart your fitness regime like never before. The two-night bootcamp is available at four resorts in the picturesque British countryside, including Tring, Forest Mere, Henlow and Springs, and this prize offer is for a place on the bootcamp held at the newly refurbished Forest Mere resort. The programme is not only designed to help you achieve your fitness goals but it also helps you to gain a positive mental perspective while giving your confidence a boost at the same time. Whether you are looking to shed a few pounds to fit into your wedding dress, to prepare yourself for a holiday on the beach or to advance your general fitness levels, Champneys bootcamp can help you on your way. An experience like no other, your stay will cleanse your mind, body and soul. Your daily fitness routine will be a combination of intensive
rigorous exercise within the enchanting grounds, followed by an evening of some much needed pampering; whether it’s relaxing in the Jacuzzi after a long day of exercise or treating yourself to a massage to soothe your muscles. A team of top fitness and nutritional experts will take you on your own individual journey that will help you achieve unbelievable results by supporting and motivating you every step of the way. This rewarding and fun-filled programme includes both indoor and outdoor activities, team games and health and weight monitoring, as well as the new succulent and flavoursome menu specially designed by Champneys’ world renowned chefs, which will introduce you to a whole new style of healthy cooking; a delightful cuisine that is not only appetising but is also low in calories and high in nutrients. The programme also includes blood pressure checks, nutrition plans, diet and exercise discussions, a 25-minute Champneys massage, a Thalassotherapy pool session and carefully crafted healthy breakfasts, lunches and dinners. Lose weight, tone up and achieve your fitness goals!
Prize Draw.indd 2
HOW TO ENTER:
Log on to our website yourfitnesstoday.com and answer the question below correctly to be in with a chance of winning this amazing prize!
Q) How many nights is the bootcamp held for? a) 2
b) 7 c) 5
Prize Draw.indd 3
YOUR FITNESS SEPT 2016 ad master_ROP 19/08/2016 16:11 Page 38
your fitness REPORT
PRO RUNNING Perfect your stride with these training plans, kit buys and elite tips
Run the risk If you were asked to name a dangerous sport, your answer would probably be something along the lines of boxing or horse riding. However, research by UK health insurance provider Benenden has revealed that people are actually more likely to suffer an injury from running than from an activity such as rugby or martial arts. While this may be true, itâ€™s important to remember that although all sports carry a certain amount of risk, the benefits outweigh the negatives, as Jane Abbott, hospital director at Benenden states in the report. She advises setting incremental goals, meaning that instead of setting out to run five miles a day immediately, you should gradually build up your mileage on a weekly basis to avoid hurting yourself.
Your Fitness Says... JANE ALSO RECOMMENDS ENSURING THAT YOU HAVE A VARIED EXERCISE SCHEDULE AND A HEALTHY, NUTRIENT-RICH DIET TO REDUCE YOUR CHANCE OF INJURY
YOUR FITNESS SEPT 2016 ad master_ROP 19/08/2016 16:09 Page 40
Switch up your running routine this autumn with interval training
Running feature.indd 1
STANDARD INTERVAL REPEATS
These involve running for a certain distance, followed by a set distance or timed recovery jog, and then repeating this fast run/slow jog combination until the end of the session. The goal is to slowly build up the time you spend running at high levels, which will increase your body’s ability to run at a sustained pace for longer periods of time. PT Davina Lewis explains that interval training helps us to meet the multiple demands on the body when increasing race speed. She says: “The challenge and the benefit of running intervals are deeply routed in controlling the recovery time, not running faster. In general, you will be ready to ramp up your interval workouts when you have successfully run your current workout for three to four weeks.” Standard interval repeats work for both sprinters and marathon runners, as they will help you to sustain your current pace.
You’re running the same route three times a week at your regular pace – what could be wrong with that? Nothing, but by adding interval training to your routine, you could feel a whole range of benefits, from getting faster and increasing your endurance to fighting belly fat and decreasing your resting heart rate. We’ve rounded up five of the best types of interval training to mix up your running sessions, with simple, easy-to-follow workout plans from PT Dean Hodgkin.
DEAN’S WORKOUT: Four to five reps of one mile with a four minute recovery time in between each, or alternatively 12 reps of 400m with a two or three minute recovery time between each one.
#2 PYRAMID TRAINING
Also known as ladders, a pyramid session is a variation on standard interval repeats and is perfect if you’re planning a few track races and need a little help to get started. A workout involves running increasingly longer intervals followed by progressively shorter ones, so that your times form a pyramid shape. It can be done frequently and runners of all abilities can use it – advanced runners can simply add more, longer intervals to increase the difficulty. Pyramid training is a great way to mentally train yourself to push through fatigue and to keep motivated, even when you don’t want to, and they are perfect for when you’re travelling, as they can be completed almost anywhere. DEAN’S WORKOUT: Begin by running for two minutes at your 5k pace with a one minute recovery. Then run for four minutes at your 5k pace with a one minute recovery time, followed by eight minutes of running at a 10k race pace and a one minute recovery time. Complete another eight minutes at a 10k race pace with a one minute recovery time, then slow back down to running four minutes at a 5k race pace with a one minute recovery time, before finishing with a two minute run at a 5k race pace.
#3 INDIAN RUNNING Running with a group, but still want to use interval training in your session? Try Indian running, which is a modified version of fartlek training (see #4) and can be used anywhere. You’ll need at least four runners, but the bigger the group, the better the workout. When you’ve all warmed up, start running in single file at a pace that works for everyone. Then, the runner at the back increases their speed to run to the front of the line, settling back to the required pace. As soon as they are in place, the next runner from the back runs forward to be in front. Continue this for the entire run, which can be over a set distance or time.
Running feature.indd 2
We all know the pain of turning a corner on a run and being faced with a sudden steep incline – it breaks your rhythm, slows you down and puts strain on your body. However, you can turn this around by incorporating them into your routine with hill repeats, which involve running up a gradient for a set distance or time, and then jogging back down as recovery. Not only will it improve your leg-muscle strength and quicken your stride, it’ll also help you to develop your cardiovascular system and protect you against soreness. Live somewhere flat? Never fear, you can either use a treadmill to simulate a hill session, or if that’s not possible, you can use stairs (try three or four floors of an office building). If you do find hills challenging, remember to shorten your stride, don’t try to maintain the pace you were running at on the flat, and keep your posture upright – don’t lean forward or back.
DEAN’S WORKOUT: The first option is a short session involving 10-15 reps of 150300m up a moderate incline at around a 5k pace with a jog down recovery. The second option is five to 10 reps of 4001000m up a gentle slope at around a 10k pace, then a jog down to recover.
#4 Dean Hodgkin is a PT for Ragdale Hall and TRIB3. Find him online at deanhodgkin.com
Don’t laugh – fartlek means ‘speed play’ in Swedish! Developed by athlete and coach Gosta Holmer in 1937, this training method combines continuous training with intervals and is completely unstructured. You can tailor the intensity and speed to your own needs and a stopwatch isn’t necessary, so it’s easy to do. Fartlek is simply a mixture of periods of fast and slower running or jogging, and it’s all up to you, depending on how you feel during your workout – for example, you could choose to sprint to the next corner, followed by a jog to the next telegraph pole and then a sprint to the postbox. This is a great, fun
way to add variety to your run in a manner that suits you, meaning that it can be used by everyone and will eventually lead to faster speeds and an improved anaerobic threshold. It’s especially good for beginners as it is easily adjustable, can be done anywhere and is not so demanding. DEAN’S WORKOUT: Sprint for 30 seconds when you pass a stop sign. Run hard, then jog between alternate street lights. If you’re running with a slower partner, sprint ahead for one minute, then sprint back to join them and continue at their pace.
Running feature.indd 3
RUNNING like a girl Each month the TV presenter, radio host and our woman pounding the pavements fills us in on her fitness diary
t’s around this time of year that most of us start to consider our late autumn and winter training options. A run around the block before or after work becomes less and less appealing as the darker mornings and evenings become more noticeable, and if there’s a sudden chilly downpour or an ice cold mist in the air, we are less likely to head outdoors and train alfresco. And so it’s time to start exploring the gym options. I remember ﬁrst joining a gym when I was 19 years old – I had just started working in TV and lived in the West End of Glasgow. Belonging to a gym then was on a par with having a mobile phone, or using a ﬁlofax – it was deemed rather yuppie-esque. Fast forward a few years, though, and just as owning a mobile phone is absolutely standard practice for anyone of adult age, so is belonging to a gym. In fact nowadays the latter is so ‘de rigeur’, that many people have multiple memberships. Gyms can work on so many levels. Some places are simply there to fulfill your workout needs, while other studios are like a reality version of Tinder – a place where you can go and just swipe your eyes left and right at prospective dates. Other ﬁtness centres are places to hang-out with friends and then there are the health and leisure clubs where entire families can spend their free-time. We belong to the David Lloyd Health and Racquets Club and I have to admit I would be lost without it. My daughter attends swimming and tennis lessons there and I am a huge fan of the adult facilities. We could easily spend a whole day there and be kept very busy! Even having a personal trainer in 2016 is not just for A-list Hollywood movie stars in training for their next role and it
Jenni Falconer.indd 1
“Even having a personal trainer in 2016 is not just for A-list stars and it makes me wonder how things will progress moving forwards” makes me wonder how things will progress moving forwards. Already ﬁtness studios are allowing you to sign up per class as opposed to per annum and there are so many different types of workouts which have become available recently. What will we all be doing in the next few years? Some classes feel quite futuristic even now – at the David Lloyd gym I go to, for example, they offer an incredible immersive cycling experience from Les Mills and I’m sure it won’t be long before the bike becomes far more dynamic, tilting backward, forward and side to side, working the cyclist’s core as they lean and bend with the bike. In boxing, I predict that robot sparring is coming. Imagine being paired with someone who is available at exactly the same time,
will never be late and will be able to match your ﬁtness or challenge you depending on what level you have selected. And, how do you fancy simulated training? A potential workout style where your eyes, ears and mind can all be tricked into believing a different reality. Putting on a simple headset whilst training could make you believe that you are being pursued by aliens, or perhaps being chased by a shark in the pool. I bet that as a consequence you would run or swim a lot faster! I have a feeling that there are inevitable advances in the way we get ﬁt fast approaching, but let’s not get too carried away just yet. Besides, for the moment, I’m more than happy with a treadmill session, some box jumping and using my kettle bells and dumbbells!
TWEET JENNI @jennifalconer
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DNA Weight loss DNA kit company Eugene reveals why your genetic make-up is the key to losing weight DNA Kits We’ve all done it: followed a diet everyone is raving about, expected amazing results but failed to see any difference. A little disheartened, we put it down to the fact it just doesn’t work for us and move on to another diet plan or exercise regime on the quest to find ‘the one’. However, perhaps the key isn’t working our way through different options in order to discover one that finally works for us. What if instead there was a way to eliminate the guesswork and pinpoint precisely what our body needs to lose weight and get fit? It turns out there is a solution: weight loss DNA kits.
How does it work? Your body is made up of genetic variations that affect how you use fat and carbohydrates, as well as respond to different forms of exercise.
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outlining examples of exercise activities and correct diet that will fast track your weight loss. You’ll discover the percentage of carbs, fat and protein to include in your daily calorie target and whether your body is suited to low or high intensity exercise.
What should I be eating and what exercise is best for me? The beauty of weight loss DNA kits is that the detailed interpretation of your specific genotypes can help you make the right choices for your body, plus lose weight safely and sustainably. Your test results from Eugene are delivered in an easy-to-understand manual,
WHAT DO I NEED TO DO? Eugene makes DNA testing easy; simply order your kit online at eugenedna.com. Pay £29.99 and receive your Eugene DNA Testing Kit through the post. In your kit, you will ﬁnd some forms to ﬁll out and a swab kit to collect oral DNA (yes, it’s that simple!). Once you have ﬁlled out your forms and collected your DNA, you send your kit oﬀ with a ﬁnal payment of £139 for DNA analysis to get your personalised results.
your fitness REPORT
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YOUR FITNESS SEPT 2016 ad master_ROP 19/08/2016 16:13 Page 56
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PRANAMAT ECO Pranamat Eco is like a personal masseur. It is always nearby to be used any time, anywhere. The perfect way to re-energise, and help achieve overall health and wellbeing.
Our celebrity stylista reflects on the last nine months
“that HIIT class has broken me”, it was all about how hard I could push myself and how sore I’d feel the next day. This had to change. For the first three months my exhaustion levels were so high and my morning sickness so bad that I genuinely couldn’t do much more than the odd Pilates class. On reflection, I’m so glad that I listened to my body and didn’t try to fight against it, especially because I learnt the most about myself in those initial 12 weeks. Being kind to myself and putting all of those body image insecurities to bed was a sharp learning curve as I started to nurture this little bean growing inside me. After week 13 I was back to my usual self, with a spring in my step and a much wiser, calmer head on my shoulders. I could spin, gently, do HIIT sessions at 50 percent and tackle free weights without trying to compete with the person next to me. My final trimester has been full of swimming, yoga, uphill walks and leg extensions and if I can’t find the energy on a certain day, I drink a green juice and walk to the shops instead. In hindsight, slowing down has taught me so much – not only have I given myself the time to love and bond with my little girl before she arrives, I have also learnt how to do this with myself, something I will keep with me forever.
n late January I sat on my bathroom floor after taking three positive pregnancy tests and realised my life would never be the same again. I was going to be a mum. Fear followed joy, followed fear, followed joy, and if I’m honest this has pretty much continued throughout the last nine months. Every ounce of ego I’d attached to my single life I’ve been teaching myself to forget – all of those small things we do daily, that mean so much to us when we don’t have children. I’ve been learning to try and leave these neurosis at the door, because I soon realised that there was something bigger than me going on – I was no longer the centre of my universe.
“My exercise routine always had a certain ferocity about it” One of the biggest aspects of my life that had to be adapted was training. My exercise routine always had a certain ferocity about it – I would use sentences like “I killed myself on the treadmill earlier”, or
Zoe’s top pregnancy tips #JUST KEEP SWIMMING
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Opti Silver Gymball £5.49 argos.co.uk
Bounce on an exercise ball for at least 15 minutes at the end of your workout to strengthen your pelvic floor – it’s genius! Such a simple movement is actually strengthening and tightening all of the right muscles in this area without you even noticing.
TWEET ZOE @Zoehardman
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Pregnancy yoga is such a great way to get ready for the birth, especially if you’re a bit of a fast pace loon like me! The breathing techniques kept me calm and opened my eyes to hypnobirthing. It also keeps my muscles loose and supple when everything else is sore, tight and uncomfortable.
Rich in vitamins A, E and D, and lecithin, these buttery super fruits are incredibly moisturising for both skin and hair. Their highly emollient properties make them ideal for increasing moisture retention and relieving a dry or itchy scalp. Treat your tresses to Percy and Reed’s cleansing conditioner which promotes hair growth and leaves it touchably soft thanks to the inclusion of aloe vera and essential oils. These cling to dirt and impurities, so they rinse away clean. Perfectly Perfecting Wonder Cleanse & Nourish, £18 percyandreed.com
MEND Heading to a yoga class? Keep your strands out of your face with a softer half-up do. For a boho finish, twist two sections above your ears and secure at the nape of your neck or gather half of your tresses and tie in a bun for a carefree top knot.
Toni & Guy at Vivienne Westwood
It may sound like something you’d find in your sushi bowl, but kerarice also protects your hair from solar radiation and repairs its keratin fibre by increasing the amino acids present. Phytoplage’s After Sun Recovery Mask (£16 phyto-haircare. co.uk) restructures even the most frazzled hair, giving it a hit of much-needed moisture.
Morrocanoil at Altuzarra
Repair summer skin and frazzled hair with these top ingredients
It may be our supergrain of choice to boost our salads, but the protective outer shell of the quinoa seed also has amazing exfoliation properties. By accelerating the nightly cell turnover process, it leaves your skin rejuvenated, smooth and glowing with health. Kiehl’s Dermatologist Solutions Nightly Refining Micro-Peel Concentrate (£40 kiehls.co.uk) sloughs away dulling dead skin cells without a scrub in sight.
Sweat, salt water and suncream may make for a heavenly holiday but they can also cause havoc with your pores come home-time leading to unsightly blemishes. No thanks! Less commonly known as beta hydroxy acid (BHA), salicylic acid is a multitasking maverick that can tackle many of the troublesome causes of problem skin by breaking up cells that stick together to block blackheads and whiteheads. Origin’s Super Spot Remover, £15 origins.co.uk
Nothing brings holiday blues to a peak quite like peeling skin. Thankfully, you can hold onto your tan a little longer by immersing your skin in products that include coriander seed. Its fatty acid content leaves a subtle film on the surface of your skin locking in existing moisture and putting a stop to that unsightly scaly appearance. Aesop Coriander Seed Body Cleanser (£31 liberty.co.uk)
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If you’ve OD’d on rays this summer, it’s time for some serous damage control. As sun damage and pollution are the two main culprits for collagen breakdown, this can lead to premature ageing and nasty brown spots. No thanks! Opting for vitamin C-laden skincare can up your antioxidant protection, shield your skin from damaging free radicals and actively boost collagen production for a glowing visage. Hurrah! Overnight Body Treatment, £49 sarahchapman.net
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What’s the best way to tackle oily skin? Samantha Sergent (benaturallyyou.com), says: Believe it or not, applying a good quality organic chia seed, jojoba or avocado oil will be the best way to balance your complexion. Avoid stripping your skin of its natural oils for that ‘squeaky clean’ feeling as your body will think you don’t have enough and, in turn, produce more oil. Contrary to belief plant oils won’t clog your pores or make your visage greasier and are packed with the vitamins, amino acids and antioxidants your skin needs to feel balanced Congested Skin Serum, £16 and hydrated.
YOUR FITNESS SEPT 2016 ad master_ROP 19/08/2016 16:09 Page 60
Get Jen’s Look 1. Aveeno Daily Body Lotion, £5.10 boots.com 2. Tom Ford Nail Lacquer in Bitter Bitch, £27 johnlewis.com 3. BareSkin Pure Brightening Serum Foundation, £27 bareminerals.co.uk 4. Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Sheer Powder, £39 houseoffraser.co.uk 5. Living Proof Restore Mask, £35 spacenk.com
GOLDEN GIRL Queen of rom com Jennifer Aniston shares her secrets to being an ageless beauty Think of Jennifer Aniston and what springs to mind? A yoga-honed bod? Golden limbs? Or that shiny do? Chances are, it's all of the above as the 47-year-old has maintained a timeless look since her breakthrough role as Rachel Green in Friends, cementing herself as the ultimate girl-next-door. From rocking the most coveted hairstyle of the 90s to partowning a haircare line, Living Proof, Jennifer's beauty influence knows no boundaries. While her wellbeing rules of eating heathily and getting plenty of shut eye have stood the test of time, it's also Jennifer's role of global ambassador for Aveeno skincare that has kept her glowing complexion in the spotlight. Here she shares her pearls of beauty wisdom and reveals why simplicity is the key to a youthful visage. Women have to find what works for their own skin and I don’t think you really need to take a lot of time to have a great skincare regime. Keeping it simple and using what works for you is best. I have been using Aveeno for years and years because of its amazing ingredients. I love the Aveeno Scrub, which I got from a make-up artist about 10 years ago – I always use it at the end of the day after washing
my face. But ultimately it all comes down to the basics – drink lots of water, sleep and eat right. Oats are very healthy. We eat oatmeal because it's a well-balanced breakfast thanks to its high mineral content and the fact that it's packed with antioxidants, lipids and vitamins – all things that are great for your skin. Try to find a lotion with oats as they’re incredibly hydrating, which is why I’ve used Aveeno Daily Moisturising Lotion (1) since I was a teenager in high school. I always apply it after a shower and leave my skin a little damp to give it extra hydration. It also has SPF 30 so it's perfect to protect my skin against the Californian sun. It’s so hydrating and helps my skin feel soft all day. I love how the sun feels on my skin, but it does have its downfalls. We do need a certain amount of sun for vitamin D, but it's about not abusing it and taking care with proper protection. I had to give myself a sun intervention a few years ago and now I take SPF everywhere with me, but when I was younger I wish someone had made me put it on more. I have a spray tan every now and then but I'm learning to be OK with not being tanned.
4 5 YourFitness 61
YOUR FITNESS SEPT 2016 ad master_ROP 19/08/2016 16:09 Page 62
FEED YOUR SKIN from the INSIDE Our new beauty columnist reveals the best food for achieve radiant skin
healthy youthful glow is what we all aim for as we get older, but unfortunately it gets harder to achieve as the years go by. Some people go to extreme lengths to obtain a line-free, super smooth face but there are plenty of ways that you can improve the quality of your skin without erasing all of the expressions you have earned through life's many ups and downs. I prefer to work on the quality and the texture of my skin and I do this through a variety of ways – including numerous beauty treatments (some of which I'll be looking at in future columns). This month though, I would like to focus on nutrition and share some tips on how you can eat your way to fabulous skin. I notice a huge difference in both my energy levels and my body depending on what I eat. Sadly we now live in a world obsessed with weight, scales and fad diets and this can have a big impact on the quality and luminosity of our complexion. When we dehydrate, diet or deny our bodies nutritional staples it doesn't do our skin any favours. Eating well is about focusing on a diet rich in variation – you need to eat good fats that feed your body and keep it healthy and glowing and also consume foods that promote the production of collagen. Collagen is responsible for the healing process and the plumpness associated with youth, but from around our midthirties our body's ability to produce this important protein starts to slow down. It's when we lose the plumpness that the lines, wrinkles and crows feet start to become more noticeable, so it's a good idea to try to boost the levels of your collagen if possible. I have recently been trialling some amazing new pills from Ingenious Beauty (ingeniousbeauty.co.uk) that encourage collagen production and claim to reduce fine lines by 26 percent. I have been using them for three weeks now and so far so good. We're encouraged to eat five portions of fruit and veg a day but I think we can
consume much more. Think of your diet and your plate as a rainbow of foods and know that the more hues you incorporate, the better. I eat as many colourful and water-rich foods as possible including pomegranates, cucumber, asparagus, kale, spinach, cauliflower and peppers. All of these are rich in antioxidants and help your skin to prevent or slow down cell damage. Protein-rich foods are important too as they help to encourage the production of collagen, so make sure you get your fill of eggs, salmon and lean meats. Good fats such as avocados, nuts, seeds and olive oil are amazing at moisturising the skin from the inside and are actually really good for you and your complexion (in moderation of course). Also don’t forget the power of water – it energises the cells in our bodies, helps with digestion and flushes out toxins and fats from our systems. I aim for a couple of litres of water a day and when I’m feeling tired I reach for a big glass of H2O to perk me up instead of endless cups of coffee.
Lisa's skin-boosting salad AUBERGINE SALAD WITH GREEN BEANS, TOMATOES & CHICKPEAS Start by cutting one large aubergine in half and then into one inch moon slices. Place them in an oven-proof dish and coat them in some garlic oil or olive oil and a squeeze of lemon juice before placing under the grill. Keep an eye on the aubergine and turn them until they start to colour a little. Meanwhile, chop a handful of tomatoes and place into a bowl, add the zest of two lemons and a bunch of chopped parsley. Blanch a handful of trimmed green beans and then cut into quarters. Add the greens and the cooked aubergines to your bowl of tomatoes. Spread a can of chickpeas onto the baking tray, squeeze some lemon juice and grill for a couple of minutes. Once they're cooked, add them to your salad and toss everything together. Season with salt and pepper and a little cayenne pepper and sprinkle some toasted pine nuts on top. YourFitness 63
Lisa Snowdon.indd 1
bikini fitAT 50!
Having dropped two dress sizes and gained a bikini modelling award, it’s fair to say that following Bio-Synergy’s 12-week fitness plan has changed Sarah Hunter’s life
Depressed about her ever expanding waistline that kept growing despite all her dieting and exercise efforts, Sarah Hunter, 52, finally managed to shift her excess lbs with a 12-week fitness challenge that she discovered online. Now with a bikini modelling title under her belt, she’s not looking back! Here she shares her story… “It was around the time of my 50th birthday that things started to get on top of me. I’d always been slim, healthy and sporty too – I’d played netball to a high standard, run half marathons and I’d even tried sea rowing – but as I got older it became harder and harder to keep the weight off. “I’m an outgoing person and have worked in sales most of my life so I’m not one to get down, but I hated the idea of buying size 16 clothes and when it came round to holidays in the sun, I dreaded the idea of wearing anything
as revealing as a bikini. It wasn’t that I’d let myself go – I just felt out of shape and squidgy and my busy social life which involved lots of dining out didn’t help. “I’d bought some of the Bio-Synergy health supplements online and when I saw the 12-week fitness challenge pop up on the site I thought it could be a really good plan to try – I’m quite competitive so the idea that I could lose weight and get fit with a target in mind really appealed. “It was quite simple to follow: there were eating plans with plenty of recipes that focused on cutting down on carbs and bulking proteinbased meals with chicken and fish with lots of veg and salad. You’re also given a personal training plan with plenty of motivation boosting tips. I liked the fact that you weren’t encouraged to keep weighing yourself – something a lot of other slimming clubs focus on. The idea is that as you slim down and shape up, you might actually weigh the same – even a bit more – but your measurements will be less. “As the days of the challenge ticked by I was finding my new eating plan easier to do and the weight was dropping off too. I enjoyed the exercise – I got myself a personal trainer to help once a week, and when I’d completed the 12 weeks and sent in my results with pictures, the team at Bio Synergy were so impressed they asked if I wanted to be an ambassador for them. Before I knew it I was joining the other ambassadors – some of whom are big sporting names like James Cracknell – and giving talks to help other people learn how to eat well and get fit and I was loving it! “The bikini modelling competition is something that’s organised once a year –
it’s a chance for men and women to show how far they’ve come and my personal trainer said I should give it a go, even just to prove something to myself. It meant some more serious training – but my partner Jon and the rest of my friends and family were supportive. The scariest thing was being fitted for a bikini that would be handmade to show off my new shape. “When the day of the competition dawned I felt a mixture of excitement and serious nerves. I posed for my spray tan and waited patiently as the stylist worked her magic on my face and hair. My bikini was tiny – it has to be to show off your shape – but it looked amazing and knowing my family were in the crowd helped calm me down when I stepped on stage. “I was entered for four categories and was actually awarded 3rd prize in the masters competition for women over 45, something I was told was pretty impressive for my first shot. And now I’m hooked! I’m already training for my next competition and couldn’t feel happier with my new shape. I’ve dropped two dress sizes and am proud to wear a bikini – for the first time in 10 years!”
For more information on the 12-Week Challenge and how to sign up visit bio-synergy.co.uk.
your fitness REPORT
HEALTH FILES Expert advice to maximise your health and wellbeing
Heard of sea buckthorn berries? This edible, nutritious fruit can be pressed into an oil which is very beneficial, as it’s one of the richest known sources of omega 7. This fatty acid can help you to achieve shiny hair, glowing skin and strong nails, as well as maintain healthy cholesterol and blood sugar levels. Its main attraction, however, is the fact that it can provide the nourishment and moisture needed to repel chapped and cracked skin by internally supporting the body’s lubrication channels. Recent studies have shown that omega 7 can aid those suffering from dry eye conditions, and it can also relieve some symptoms of the menopause.
Your Fitness Says... INTRODUCE THIS IMPORTANT FATTY ACID INTO YOUR DIET WITH PHARMANORD’S OMEGA 7 SBA24 CAPSULES, WHICH ARE 100 PERCENT PLANT-BASED AND FREE FROM ARTIFICIAL COLOURING AGENTS. £18.95 FOR A PACK OF 60, OMEGA7.CO.UK YourFitness 65
Shona Wilkinson, nutritionist at superfooduk.com, tells us how to achieve stronger, shinier hair through food: “Known for its skin-soothing properties, aloe vera juice can also improve the growth and condition of your hair. This may be due to the vitamins and minerals that it contains, including vitamins C, E and beta carotene, as well as B1, B2, B3 and B6 and the minerals zinc, copper and iron. Another way it could work is by supporting the immune system. In some cases, the cause of hair loss is due to an immune reaction against the hair follicles, indicating that the system is out of balance. Aloe vera juice contains a substance called acemannan that may help to balance and support the immune system.”
ESSENTIALS Get the inside scoop to stay in peak condition
OUR top THREE: new drinks RE
With a refreshing, fruity taste, true nopal cactus water is a 100 percent natural drink containing no artificial flavours, fat, or added sugar. £1.69, available at Boots.
Made using organic, young green coconuts packed with antioxidants, Rebel Kitchen’s Coconut Water is the closest taste there is to drinking straight from the freshly picked fruit. £1.99, available at Waitrose and Ocado.
Up your intake of the powerful wonder root with the Turmeric Juice Zinger, a blend of freshly pressed, juiced turmeric, apple, lemon, pepper and chilli designed to wake you up. £1.49, available at Waitrose.
Health essentials.indd 2
SERBIAN PROFESSIONAL TENNIS PLAYER ANA IVANOVIC TELLS US WHY WE SHOULD TAKE UP THE SPORT
ON MATCH PREPARATION
How I prepare for a match depends on what kind of mood I’m in on the day – sometimes I like to have a laugh with my coach beforehand and other times I prefer to be on my own and listen to music in the tunnel before walking onto the court.
ON WHY YOU SHOULD TAKE UP THE SPORT
Ana was speaking at the WTA Pre-Wimbledon party sponsored by Dubai Duty Free
I think tennis is such a fun sport because there are so many variations, from singles to doubles, and anyone can play, no matter what level you’re at. It’s also a great way to socialise as you can play in a group.
ON NUTRITIONAL ADVICE
I always have healthy, raw, organic snack bars and nuts with me, especially when I travel, as it’s so hard to eat healthily when you’re always on a plane. I think that you should have everything in moderation though – so whatever your body’s asking for, you should let it have a bit!
ON TRAINING OFF COURT
I spend a lot of time in the gym, not lifting weights but instead doing lots of exercises to help with injury prevention, because as you get older you have to take more care of your body. That’s why I don’t do strenuous workouts, but I do cross training and other sports because they’re fun.
“I share the same advice that my mom gave me – stay hydrated and sleep well. Being a beautiful person on the inside is what really matters”
Helga Esteb / Shutterstock.com
Ask an ATHLETE
Jessica Alba, actress
SWAP of the MONTH FANCY A WARMING BOWL OF SOUP FOR LUNCH? STEER CLEAR OF CREAM-BASED ONES AS THEY’RE PACKED WITH CALORIES AND INSTEAD CHOOSE A BROTH-BASED SOUP FULL OF VEGETABLES AND PROTEIN, SUCH AS MINESTRONE.
of Brits don’t know what the recommended daily amount of fat consumption is
Want an easy way to cut calories?
A new study by the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine suggests that you can avoid unhealthy impulse purchases by ordering meals at least an hour before eating. The scientists found that people choose higher-calorie meals when ordering immediately before eating, and lower-calorie food when orders are placed an hour or more in advance. This shows that decisions made in the heat of the moment are not as far-sighted as those made in advance – if you’re hungry and ready to eat, you’re more likely to make an unhealthier food choice.
Transform yourself from the inside out with new book Radical Beauty, a practical, easy-tofollow guide which focuses on six pillars of healthy living – internal and external nourishment, beauty sleep, primal beauty, movement and spiritual beauty. Written by Deepak Chopra, a leading pioneer of mind/ body medicine and celebrity nutritionist Kimberly Snyder, this book will help you to increase your confidence and make you feel and look amazing. Radical Beauty by Deepak Chopra and Kimberly Snyder (Rider Books, £16.99)
Health essentials.indd 3
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5 reasons to swap to a Menstrual Cup
Tired of your monthly cycle getting in the way of your workout and normal day-to-day life? Feminine hygiene experts Feminesse reveals why you should ditch tampons or sanitary pads and opt for the eco-friendly, leak-free alternative
Minimise your risk of TSS. Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS) is a bacteriacaused infection that can be lifethreatening if left untreated. While its cause is unknown, instances are higher in women using tampons while on their periods. Wearing a tampon with a higher absorbency than your current ﬂow can cause small pieces of the cotton to shred, cutting your vaginal walls and creating the ideal home for bacteria.
Eliminate dryness and irritation. Menstrual cups sit soft and supple inside the body helping you to feel comfortable during what can be an uncomfortable time. The cup collects menstrual ﬂuid instead of absorbing it, maintaining the natural pH of your body and avoiding vaginal dryness and irritation.
Reduce your toilet trips. Tampons and sanitary towels can, depending on your flow, only be worn for a maximum of eight hours before they need to be changed. A menstrual cup collects up to 28ml of blood and can be worn for up to 12 hours, meaning you can swim, exercise, and get on with your day without worrying about leaks. An added bonus? You can wear it when you sleep, too.
Save money. Buying sanitary towels and pads can get expensive, but menstrual cups oﬀer a more cost-eﬀective option. Reusable and fuss-free, simply remove, wash out and reinsert each time.
Avoid chemicals and additives. Some sanitary products contain nasty chemicals such as bleach, pesticides and plastic. The Feminesse menstrual cup is made from silicone and is not only a more purse-friendly option than buying organic tampons and pads every month, but its ability to be reused helps you do your bit for the environment.
The Feminesse Menstrual Cup is a reusable, pH-friendly and eco-friendly alternative to tampons and sanitary towels. It boasts a unique, foldable design meaning the cup can be stored virtually flat and placed inside the included silicone travel case. Compact in your gym or work bag, you can carry your cup confidently and discreetly. The case also opens up to be used when cleaning the cup. For more information visit feminesse.co.uk 68 YourFitness
go with THE FLOW
MENSTRUATION It happens every month and yet itâ€™s still surprising how our much our period is a massive pain in the arse...and back and stomach. Give Aunt Flo the heave ho with these healthy hacks YourFitness 69
ON MY THIRD Q I’M OREO OF THE
DAY – HOW CAN I STOP MYSELF REACHING FOR A FOURTH?
“PMS is caused by lowering progesterone levels which impacts blood sugar levels and can lead to sugar cravings and irritability,” says Dr Marion Gluck (mariongluckclinic.com), a GP specialising in women’s health. “Avoid stimulants like coffee, complex carbohydrates, sugar and foods with a high glycemic index as these can also impact your blood sugar levels. Try to opt for organic meat as it won’t have been treated with antibiotics which can act as a hormone disrupter,” Marion tells us.
SURELY THERE’S WORN OUT Q Q I’VE A PILL I CAN ALL OF MY SMOCK DRESSES. WHAT ELSE CAN I DO TO HIDE MY BLOATED TUM?
We have the delightful fluctuation of hormones oestrogen and progesterone to thank for this uncomfortable swollen midsection as they increase fluid retention. Integrated health and fertility specialist Emma Cannon (emmacannon. co.uk) suggests being a little smarter about your snacks. “Avoid any fermentation in the gut, which means no raw food after 4pm and fruit only at the start of the day,” she says. “Try to schedule a light, early dinner and be sure to include good fats and cold pressed oils – hemp, pumpkin or olive are great lightly drizzled on vegetables or soups. My favourite tip is to have a small glass of red wine with food as the antioxidative polyphenols can curb the growth of destructive bacteria making it ideal for digestive support.” You don’t have to tell us twice!
EXERCISE? DO I NOT GET FREE PASS THIS WEEK?
Afraid not. Although sweating it out is the last thing you feel like doing when you’re tired, achey and bloated, studies have shown that an increase in serotonin leaves (bought on by exercise) helps symptoms such as a low mood and painful cramps. But, instead of forcing yourself to carry out your usual HIIT session, Marion suggests listening to your body and what it needs. “Pilates, yoga and tai chi are helpful during PMS as they focus on pulling your energy inward and the stretching element can ease tired muscles and alleviate cramps.”
TAKE TO EASE PMS SYMPTOMS?
There aren’t many ailments that popping a pill can’t aid but sadly, we’re stuck with this one. However, just like the Tampax advert, mother nature crops up everywhere and can be the cure as well as the cause of our pain. “Evening primrose is ideal to help stabilise your hormones while magnesium and multivitamin B complex are great for calming any PMS-induced anxiety,” Marion advises. “We’ve all succumbed to the dreaded mood lows at some time or another but taking valerian passiflora and St John’s wort can balance out moments of irritability.” As if that wasn’t enough to deal with, we also have the external dilemmas of dry skin, greasy hair and skin breakouts to contend with. Emma recommends including omega 3 to combat such beauty dilemmas.
THAT I’VE Q NOW SCORED SOME
SERIOUS WORKOUT BROWNIE POINTS, WHAT’S THE BEST WAY TO RELAX?
If there’s one positive to take from that time of month, it’s an ideal time to indulge and not feel the least bit guilty. “Taking a warm bath can be a wonderful way to de-stress and take some me-time. Consider adding magnesium salts and essential oils such as lavender, epsom salts, rose and clary sage essential oils to rid your muscles of any aches and calm your mind,” Emma says.
IS MY Q WHY PMS SO MUCH
WORSE WHEN I HAVE A LOT ON AT WORK?
There’s no convenient time to have your period but when a packed work diary is thrown in the mix, it can make things a little, well, tricky. “Stress releases and increases our adrenalin and cortisol hormone levels signalling to our body that we’re in danger which has a major impact on our cycle,” Marion explains. In Chinese medicine, stress causes the Qi (our life force that flows within us) to become stagnant, causing pain, frustration, bloating and mood changes. “Acupuncture is the best treatment I know for treating this. It is extremely effective in improving all symptoms,” Emma tells us.
STRUGGLING Q I’M TO SQUEEZE INTO MY FAVOURITE JEANS – HAS PMS MADE ME GAIN WEIGHT?
Despite convincing ourselves that we’ve ballooned in size in the days leading up to our period, that chocolate muffin binge last night is unlikely to be the cause. Although weight gain around five days before our period is real, it is usually temporary. Preperiod water weight can range from half a pound to 10 pounds but tends to go back to normal when menstruation starts. It sounds counterproductive but drinking lots of water at this time will trick your body into not holding on to it thus relieving water retention.
go with THE FLOW
IT TRUE THAT Q ISGLUTEN CAN
AFFECT MY PMS?
It may not seem like an obvious link, but yes, it can. Gluten can place a great deal of stress on your adrenals (the little glands that sit above your kidneys and help the body deal with daily stress). When our adrenals become exhausted, they will produce stress hormones at the expense of our sex hormones. This can lead to oestrogen dominance with symptoms such as heavy bleeding, irregular menses, fibroids, endometriosis, breast tenderness, depression and infertility. “If you struggle to go without gluten completely, try to cut it out for the duration of your period at least,” Emma advises. “Serotonin (the mood stabiliser chemical) is manufactured in the gut, therefore if the gut function is improved then often the hormones come into balance too.”
it’s OK to blame PMS for... l Giving your SO the silent treatment for three hours because they ate the last Hobnob l Crying at your desk because the printer’s broken l Telling yourself the washing machine shrunk your jeans for the duration of your period l Holding your hand on the horn a little longer than normal when someone cuts you up l Falling asleep on the sofa immediately after your workout... without showering
PMS PROTECTORS SOOTHE Loaded with essential fatty acids, evening primrose helps to reduce pain associated with PMS including breast pain, mood imbalances and water retention. Good Evening Primrose, £21 thegoodguru.com
RELAX Research shows that taking a whiff of lavender for 10 minutes can help alleviate the feelings of depression and emotion that are often associated with that time of the month. Amber and Lavender Bath Oil, £40 jomalone.co.uk
STRETCH Yoga and Pilates are great for stretching aching muscles. Try child’s pose, one-armed camel pose and arching pigeon pose to feel a little more human again. La Vie Boheme Yoga Mandala Mat, £53.40 sweatybetty.com
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Every month our healthy living guru brings us her bite-sized tips
“Sometimes my smoothies are so thick that I pour them into a bowl and that way it feels as though I’m eating a meal”
e should never associate joy with guilt, but somehow treating ourselves has become synonymous with that emotion. Working on that is key to a happy mind, and it prevents over indulging. So, while we are busy kicking that emotion to the curb, I have designed some healthy treats for you to enjoy, without any of the associated guilt!
Goji berry and oatmeal biscuits Love cookies? Here’s a recipe for some superfood bites, which are high in protein and contain a small amount of good carbs. Combine a cup of whole-wheat flour with two teaspoons of baking powder, one teaspoon of cinnamon, one cup of oats and one cup of goji berries. In a separate bowl, mix two tablespoons of coconut oil, half a cup of agave syrup, three egg whites and two teaspoons of vanilla extract. Now add the wet mix to the dry, and stir well. Divide the mixture into 15 portions on a baking tray and bake for 15 minutes in a preheated oven at 170ºC. Job done!
Nut butter fudge I’m a big fan of nut butter and also of fudge, yet these days I steer clear of regular fudge as it is full of sugar. This recipe is high in good fats and low in sugar. Mix one cup of organic nut butter of your choice, a quarter of a cup of melted coconut oil, a quarter of a teaspoon of vanilla extract and a pinch of Himalayan sea salt (or any good quality sea salt), and stir until you get a nice smooth mix. Line a cake tray with baking paper and spread the mix evenly into it. Put the tray in the freezer for a few hours and then remove and cut into squares.
Healthy banana-berry ice cream Who doesn’t love the feeling of sitting down with a tub of the cold stuff? Most brands on the market are full of nasty ingredients so here’s a
simple way to make a healthy snack with just four ingredients! Add two frozen sliced bananas (sliced before they were frozen) to a food processor with one cup of frozen berries, two tablespoons of agave syrup and half a cup of coconut or almond milk. Blend until creamy.
Lemon fro-yo Pop half a cup of agave syrup into a saucepan with two teaspoons of finely grated lemon zest and the juice of five lemons and stir together for about four minutes until the agave dissolves into the juice to make a syrup. Place this syrup in the fridge until it’s chilled (for around 30 minutes). Whisk the honey lemon syrup into three cups of plain full fat Greek yoghurt until completely combined. Now place in the freezer and remove every hour for three hours to stir. After three hours this is ready to eat!
Chocolate protein smoothie bowl Protein is an essential macro nutrient made up of amino acid and is key for building lean muscle, good hair growth and skin repair. It also keeps us fuller for longer. Sometimes my protein-based smoothies are so thick that I pour them into a bowl, and that way it feels as though I am eating a meal. In a blender, mix one scoop of chocolate protein powder, half a cup of oats (gluten-free if possible), half an avocado, a handful of blueberries, some almond milk, chia seeds, frozen spinach, water and ice. Once blended and thick, pour into a bowl. On top sprinkle two tablespoons of goji berries (which turn crunchy as soon as they hit the cold temperature!) two tablespoons of cacao nibs and some coconut flakes.
TWEET AMANDA @amandabyram and @byrambod or VISIT HER WEBSITE amandabyram.com YourFitness 73
T I T I Hut nIot too hard…
lated e r y it s n e high int s without in e s a e r gain n inc e a h t s y w jo o n h to e rch s As resea we look at how pain the injuries,
xciting, effective and time-efficient, it would seem that HIIT, the high intensity interval training technique that consists of short bursts of explosive movement followed by rest periods, can do no wrong. After a session only 20-30 minutes long, your resting metabolic rate stays raised for the next 24 hours, meaning that the fat burning isn’t over once you step off the treadmill, it just keeps going and going. Sounds ideal, right? However, as the fitness world wholeheartedly embraces the high-impact approach, top doctors believe that it could be to blame for an increase in the number of people under 30 years old suffering from hip, knee and back problems. Despite the well-documented benefits, does this mean the intense approach needs to be avoided? Well, not if you take a read of our advice below on how to swerve all the common HIIT mistakes...
PROBLEM: YOU’RE AN EXERCISE NEWBIE You’ve signed up to the gym, bought your trainers and decided it’s time to get fit and boost your health – congratulations! However, before diving headfirst into the latest workout trend and taking on too much too soon, it’s worth being realistic about your current fitness levels in order to avoid injury.
One of the great things about HIIT is that there are many different ways to carry it out, from treadmill sprints to weighted routines. However, if you’re starting out as a total beginner, Puma trainer Jay Copley suggests you use your own bodyweight to perform your HIIT training. “There’s nothing better than getting to grips with understanding how your own body moves. When you begin to feel more confident then you can start to explore other avenues, such as the treadmill,” he says. To avoid taking on too much too soon, Jay also advises working on a quality programme that builds up the workout intensity over time. “For example, start with a 15 minute session and increase the time by five minutes each week until you reach 30 minutes.”
PROBLEM: YOU’RE OVERTRAINING The short nature of HIIT workouts (which are never longer than 30 minutes) can often lead to people believing that there’s no problem with performing them every day. However, if you have done a HIIT workout properly, then your muscles will be well and truly exhausted, and so rest and recovery in between is key.
PROBLEM: YOU’RE NOT WARMING UP
Knowing the exact amount of time your body needs to recover from HIIT training is tricky to calculate, especially when trainers and programmes advise different things. Founder of BodyIn8 and PT Callum Melly for example, strongly advises against workouts without a 48 hour gap in between: “The current trend of bodyweight HIIT circuits on a regular basis (often recommended at four to five times per week) if completed at maximal effort to make it effective, means it’s impossible to maintain safe form for your body. HIIT is extremely taxing on the body and central nervous system and can cause significant wear and tear to muscles and joints. I would only recommend this twice a week for no longer than 20 minutes, integrated into a resistance workout.” Jay, while agreeing that overtraining leads to a higher chance of injury, instead advises a maximum of three HIIT workouts a week to complement your other training. We think the key here is balance and listening to your body.
Warming up your muscles is one of the most important parts of any kind of workout, but failing to limber up for an intense HIIT session especially is a recipe for disaster. By stretching before going into the hard work, you’re increasing your muscle elasticity, which means they perform better and are less likely to get injured.
The best way to warm up for a HIIT session is to mimic the movements you’ll be carrying out in the main workout. So, if you’re planning on sprinting, warm up with a light jog for five to 15 minutes, or go through the moves for a few light reps beforehand to make sure you have the correct form for when you hit it hard in the real thing.
DID YOU KNOW… Tabata, a popular version of HIIT that uses 20 seconds of ultra-intense exercise followed by 10 seconds of rest, repeated continuously for four minutes, was originally created for the Japanese Olympic speed-skating team.
PROBLEM: YOU’RE RECOVERING FROM AN INJURY As you might have gathered from the name, high intensity exercise isn’t exactly easy on the joints, so if you suffer from an old injury already, chances are this type of workout could cause it to flare up again. However, that’s not to say you have to ditch HIIT altogether...
As we’ve already mentioned, HIIT is a versatile way of training that can be performed a variety of ways, so if you’re nursing an injury or want to avoid a new one, simply opt for a low-impact method. Why not try sprints in the pool, or swap the treadmill out for the cross trainer, which still works your body but has less impact on the knees? Don’t have a gym membership? You can still train using your own bodyweight, just focus on moves that won’t pound your joints, such as seated tuck jumps and walkdown push ups. An added bonus is that this way your routine will be quieter too – ideal for those early morning exercisers who don’t want to wake the whole house!
THE TAKEAWAY: ADAPT, ADAPT, ADAPT Whether it’s playing with the timings of the recovery period, reducing the number of times you work out a week or simply opting for low-impact methods and moves, the good news is that HIIT can be a great, effective workout for everyone when tweaked to your age and fitness levels. In order to progress and see results you need to work hard and keep pushing yourself, but the effort should always be just within the realms of your ability – not to the point of extreme discomfort or pain. Always listen to your body and you can reap the benefits of HIIT training safely and successfully!
Jay Copley is a @PUMATraining trainer and member of #TeamFaster, instagram.com/jaycopley. Callum Melly is one of the UK’s leading personal trainers and founder of BodyIn8, bodyin8.com
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Supplement your health SPORT saviour
Avoid supplementing with protein because you hate the powdery residue? You need a PROMIXX 2.0, which could be the most advanced, hassle-free answer to breakfast-on-the-go ever! The rechargeable, detachable motor and PROMIXX’s specially designed X-shape blade creates the perfect vortex to perfectly blend whey proteins and nutritional supplements while preserving the protein structures. £39.99, promixx.com.
The right supplement can improve your optimum fitness performance and aid recovery, and the omegas and powerful polyphenol antioxidants within Paradox Omega Sport helps to prevent inflammation, benefits the cardiovascular system and aids concentration during regular exercise. £7.99, paradoxoil.com
Don’t let your wellbeing fall by the wayside with these health-boosting supps
Amazing Grass Raw Reserve is a blend of spirulina, chlorella, and sea vegetables from the coast of Maine, such as kelp and sea lettuce, combined with nutrient-dense cereal grasses. The addition of 25 billion probiotics per serving, a digestive enzyme complex blend, organic maca, burdock root, ginger, aloe vera, cayenne, organic flax and chia seed makes it pack a powerful nutritional punch that is organic, vegan, and gluten-free. £34.99, amazinggrassuk.com
Made with bee propolis, black elderberry, olive leaf and more, Bee Prepared combines some of the best natural ingredients to help support the body’s defences. It helps maintain health all year round, offering immunity from colds and flu in the winter months and allergies and hayfever in the summer. It also supports the body when you’re feeling run down or detoxing. Available for £11.99 in independent health stores, Holland & Barrett. unbeelievablehealth.com
The Pure Blend Company blends delicious 100 percent natural whey and vegan protein with ancient raw superfoods, such as maca, camu camu, acai, raw cacao and matcha green tea. Free from sugar, gluten, soy, nuts, flavourings and artificial additives. £30, pre-order via firstname.lastname@example.org and coming soon to pureblendco.com
This advanced B-vitamin supplement contains folate – the food-state form of folic acid. Super B-Complex is a cutting edge formula containing exceptionally absorbable B-vitamin forms that the body can use right away, provided in potent doses and with added vitamin C for greater energy, healthy metabolism, optimal brain function and a healthy heart. £11.99 for a one month supply, available from amazon.co.uk and shop.igennus.com
Ask the EXPERTS You put your fitness, health and nutrition questions to our panel of experts...
“How can I avoid injury when working out?” Grace Parry, Swansea
Tom Eastham, Technogym master trainer (technogym.com), says: “Always start your workout with a warm up, as the easiest way to injure yourself is to not prepare your body for what's about to come. Five minutes of easy-paced cardio on an exercise bike or treadmill should do the trick, followed by some dynamic stretching and mobility drills. Beyond injury avoidance, a warm up is vital for helping you to achieve your best levels of performance. During the session itself, make sure that you are moving your joints through a full range of motion and remember to brace your abs throughout, especially when you are under strain. The best way to protect yourself long-term is to take self-ownership of your body: become a student of training and seek a higher level of knowledge through consistent exercising and learning. Finally, if you are unsure of the correct technique, don’t be afraid to seek help from a member of the gym team who can assist you.”
“I’ve got the beginnings of varicose veins in my legs. What can I do to help get rid of them?” Amy Dawson, Sheffield
Peter Jackson Main, herbal director at the College of Naturopathic Medicine, (naturopathy-uk.com), says: “It’s important to address the underlying cause. One contributor could be where the blood becomes overloaded with toxins due to a poor diet and slow liver function. Avoid refined carbohydrates and sugar, foods heavy in fat, alcohol, caffeinated and carbonated drinks and instead eat fresh, plant based foods with a high vitamin and mineral content. Exercise is important, particularly jogging and walking as they help the leg muscles pump blood through the veins. Rest with your legs at a higher level than your head to assist blood flow and temporarily reduce swelling. Try the herbal remedy horse chestnut (conkers) which can be obtained as a tincture, as 10-15 drops of this liquid extract mixed with a little water taken three times daily will make a significant difference after a month or two. See a naturopathic herbalist who can make a full assessment of your needs and give you their recommendation.”
Got a question you’d like to put to our experts? Drop us a line at email@example.com YourFitness 79
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Your Guide to
PROBIOTICS Nutritionist Marianna Sulic gives you the low-down on how to boost the good bacteria in your gut. What are probiotics? Probiotics are the good bacteria that are normal inhabitants of the intestinal tract. Although the word bacteria is usually associated with germs and illness, friendly bacteria help the body to function, maintain health and fight infection. Bad or pathogenic bacteria on the other hand, can cause intestinal microflora imbalances and lead to ill health. There are two well-studied families of good bacteria called Lactobacillus, found predominantly in the upper digestive tract, and Bifidobacterium, usually found in the lower digestive tract.
Why are they important? There are many benefits of having a healthy population of good bacteria. Healthy bacteria promote other good bacteria to flourish, while reducing bad bacteria. The good bacteria boost your immunity by increasing the number of immune cells found in the gut. They fight infections and have been shown to halve recovery time from diarrhea and prevent overgrowth of harmful bacteria such as salmonella, E.coli, helicobacter pylori and candida albicans. In addition, healthy bacteria make B vitamins, vitamin A and vitamin K, while also helping to reduce cholesterol.
Where can I ﬁnd good bacteria? The healthy, good bacteria can be found in some foods and also within our digestive tract which creates a healthy environment of gut flora within our intestines. One of the best food sources of naturally-occurring probiotics is live-cultured yoghurt, especially handmade. Similarly, the fermented dairy product Kefir is a unique combination of goat’s milk and fermented kefir grains. Other fermented foods that act as probiotics are sauerkraut, miso, tempeh and kimchi, an Asian form of pickled sauerkraut. The superfoods spirulina and chlorella have also been shown to contain healthy bacteria which help to increase the amount of both Lactobacillus and Bifidobacteria in the digestive tract. Probiotic supplements are beneficial for everyone from the young to the elderly. It is ideal to top up your healthy bacteria throughout the year as many factors can affect your gut flora. More specifically, anyone suffering from digestive health issues, poor immunity and mood disorders would benefit from taking a probiotic supplement daily for one to three months, depending on the individual.
How to boost your probiotics One of the highest strength microbiotic formulas available on the UK market is Udo’s Choice Super 8. Each capsule contains 42 billion viable cells consisting of eight different strains of bacteria with a higher concentration of Lactobacillus acidophilus and a focus on strains which benefit upper bowel health. Udo’s Choice Super 8 is especially formulated to address yeast imbalances (candida), intestinal infection and for use after high-dose broad-spectrum antibiotics. Nutritionist, health expert, broadcaster, writer and consultant Amanda Hamilton says, “It’s great value for money given the quality and diversity of strains in this excellent formula. I recommend it often in my nutrition practice.”
Marianna Sulic is a nutritionist at Udo’s Choice. For more information visit www.udoschoice.co.uk 80 YourFitness
your fitness REPORT
Fuel your workouts and stay on track with your weight loss goals with this month’s recipes
Spice up your life
Cinnamon is gaining a reputation as something of a wonder ingredient lately, and for good reason. Not only can it help to sweeten dishes and drinks while lowering your blood sugar at the same time, it’s also loaded with antioxidants and has anti-inflammatory properties. Now, recent research by scientists at Rush University Medical Centre in Chicago has revealed that the benefits of this spice don’t end there. After adding ground cinnamon to a group of mice’s diet for 30 days, they discovered that their bodies broke it down into a chemical called sodium benzoate. This substance changes the hormones in the brain, converting poor learners into good learners by enhancing learning abilities.
Your Fitness Says... TRY ADDING CINNAMON TO SOUPS, JUICES, OVERNIGHT OATS, COFFEE, YOGHURT, STEWS AND MORE – THE POSSIBILITIES ARE ENDLESS
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veggie REASONS TO GO
Slimmer, healthier, sexier... just some of the benefits to being a vegetarian that could have you ditching your carnivorous ways WORDS: Laura Coppock
Research tells us that veggies are slimmer than meaties, regardless of calorie consumption. Scientists from California’s Loma Linda University found that meat-avoiders had lower BMIs than meat-eaters even though they had similar calorie intakes. The research doesn’t take into account how much exercise the participants did, but keep in mind that the cal count might not be as important as you think when it comes to weight loss. “Vegetarians are more likely to eat lots of legumes, such as lentils, chickpeas and beans,” says top nutritionist Jackie Lynch (well-well-well.co.uk). “As well as being brilliant sources of plant protein, they’re rich in fibre and stabilise bloodsugar, which supports weight management.”
On average, we shell out £15.80 on meat and fish in a weekly shop for a family of four, say figures from the Office for National Statistics, and just £4.20 on vegetables and £3.50 on fruit. If you opt for plant-based protein, like quinoa, beans, nuts and lentils instead, you can slash your food bill and still get all the goodness needed to fill you up and replenish your bod post-workout.
1 Cut your cancer risk
Even though foods like chicken breast and steak deliver essential protein, iron and zinc, making them great fuel for your body, especially after a tough fitness sesh, studies show that eating too much meat ups your risk of the C-word. One report by the WHO says that eating just 50g of processed meat a day (that’s less than two bacon rashers) could increase your risk of colon cancer by 18 percent! Another study, published in the British Medical Journal, linked high red meat intakes with breast cancer. The Department of Health advises we limit red and processed meat to 70g a day, which is about one quarter pounder beefburger (78g), or a couple of thin slices of roast beef, lamb or pork.
Help your heart
According to a study from the University of Oxford, vegetarians’ risk of heart disease is 32 percent lower than their animal-chomping counterparts. The researchers found that the average herbivorous human not only had a lower BMI, but also lower levels of cholesterol and blood pressure than carnivorous types, hence their superior heart health.
Prevent animal cruelty
If saving money, animals and the world doesn’t convince you to cross our farmyard friends off the menu, this might: it could increase your life expectancy, as Harvard scientists found a link between a high intake of protein from animal sources and increased mortality rates. The experts suggest that with simple diet swaps, like replacing your usual sausage for nuts, pulses and other plant-based protein, you could munch your way to longevity.
Of course, a major reason people shun meat is because they don’t want animals to suffer. It’s the unsavoury truth that livestock is often reared in factory farms with poor conditions, overcrowded cages and little access to daylight or fresh air before being slaughtered and ending up on our plates. If this bothers you but you don’t want to give up animal protein altogether, you can ease your conscience by opting for higher welfare products, like free-range and organic. But don’t be fooled by phrases like ‘farm assured’ or ‘farm fresh’ – see the Compassion in World Farming website (ciwf. org.uk) for labelling details.
Boost your libido
Turns out veggies are the red-blooded ones after all. According to research published in the journal Hormones and Behaviour, eating tofu can improve your sex life. It’s thought that the phytoestrogens and other compounds rich in plant based foods, like soya beans (which tofu is made from), can influence hormone levels and heighten sex drive. Bring on the bean curd!
Improve your mood
If all that extra nookie isn’t enough to put a smile on your face, embracing your inner herbivore can actually have a positive effect on your mindframe. According to a study published in Nutrition Journal, people who cut out all meat and fish from their diets saw improvements in their moods after just two weeks. The scientists put the results down to omnivores having higher intakes of omega-six in relation to omega-three fatty acids – which has been linked to depression – compared to vegetarians.
Protect the planet
While we’re talking ethics, let’s consider the environmental cost of mass meat farming. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations estimate livestock production is responsible for 14.5 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions. Plus, it can take as much as 12kg of grain to produce just 1kg of beef. So while millions of people are starving and suffering malnutrition, our cows are getting fed and plumped up ready for juicy steak dinners. A big difference could be made if we all ate less meat. It was with this aim that Stella McCartney set up Meat Free Monday (meatfreemondays.com) along with dad Paul and sister Mary, encouraging people to have at least one non-meat day a week. Check out the website for more info and tasty recipe ideas.
Get better skin
On a shallower note: eating plenty of fruit and veg can boost your complexion so much so that you’re more attractive to the opposite sex, say researchers from the University of St Andrews! “Eating plenty of vegetables exposes you to a broad range of antioxidant plant compounds which have anti-viral, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties,” explains Jackie. But meaties can reap the benefits too – the research found you only need two extra portions of fruit and vegetables a day to get your glow on, and you should see results within six weeks.
Fancy giving the veggie lifestyle a whirl but unsure of where to start in the kitchen? Fresh food home delivery service Bodychef offer a vegetarian diet plan packed with quality ingredients and nutritious meals which are prepared and delivered straight to your door! Prices vary depending on calorie levels eg. £17.98 per day at 1200 calories. bodychef.com
healthy recipes you need to try Looking for some snacktime inspiration? Your search is over, thanks to these recipes which all use one of Iceland’s healthiest and most popular food products – Skyr!
Whether you’re a fully-fledged foodie or a bit of an amateur in the kitchen, these simple recipes can be whipped up by people of all cooking abilities. And the best part? They’re a healthy alternative to traditional food, so you can enjoy them guilt-free. The only question is, which one will you try first?
1 Skyr banana bread
If you have enough bananas in your fruit bowl to feed a zoo but they don’t look like they’re going to be eaten any time soon, we recommend banana bread. Perfect for an energy-fuelled breakfast or washed down with a cup of tea as an afternoon pick-me-up, this treat is made even more moist with the addition of protein-packed vanilla Skyr. Simply mash two bananas with a fork and then add them to a large bowl with 225g selfraising flour, two tablespoon vanilla Skyr, one teaspoon baking powder, 50g butter, 175g caster sugar, two large eggs and two tablespoon milk. Mix well, then bake in a lined loaf tin at 180 degrees for around an hour. Serve with vanilla Skyr on the side.
Fat-free Skyr and berry lollies
These frozen lollies make the perfect snack or after-dinner treat, especially for those with a sweet tooth. They’re lower in both sugar and fat than standard ice cream, and you’ll get a bonus nutritional hit from the berries, which are full of antioxidants and vitamin C. Stir 250g mixed berries into 500g of blueberry or strawberry Skyr. Add one tablespoon of runny honey and one tablespoon of almond butter and stir again until everything is combined. Pour the mixture into lolly moulds – this recipe will make approximately eight portions – then freeze for at least three hours until set.
Skyr and peanut butter dip
Dips don’t have to be reserved for carrots and cucumber sticks. Naturally sweet, creamy dips for dunking fruit are becoming increasingly popular – and this recipe is simply irresistible. Made even creamier with vanilla Skyr, it’s a healthy option for all the family. Empty out one pot of vanilla Skyr into a bowl and add a tablespoon of natural peanut butter and a tablespoon of honey. Mix well and serve with thinly-sliced wedges of apple and chunks of banana. This dip makes for an ideal for a quick, nutritious dessert when time is of the essence.
Skyr is a dairy product unique to Iceland, made using a special process to ensure valuable whey proteins are kept intact. It has a thick, smooth and creamy texture and is considered a national treasure in Iceland due to its health benefits. For details, visit skyriceland.co.uk. The product is sold in Waitrose stores all over the UK.
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f r a o l f l d o
Introduce coconut oil into your kitchen with these tasty recipes from Lucy Beeâ€™s new book, Recipes for Real Life YourFitness 87
RED PEPPER AND SWEET POTATO SOUP (featured on previous page)
Lucy Bee is a coeliac, qualified beauty therapist and founder of the Lucy Bee range of raw, organic and fair trade ingredients, including coconut oil, Himalayan salt and turmeric powder.
Serves: 4-6 Ingredients: 2 tbsp Lucy Bee coconut oil 250g red onions, chopped 600g sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped 1 tsp smoked paprika (mild or hot as you prefer) 1 garlic clove, crushed 1.2 litres vegetable stock 1 x 460g jar roasted red bell peppers, drained and chopped Drizzle of extra virgin olive oil Handful of coriander, chopped
Melt the coconut oil in a heavy-based saucepan over a medium heat. Add the onions, sweet potatoes, smoked paprika and garlic and sautĂŠ for five minutes or until the onions are soft, stirring occasionally. Add the stock, bring to the boil, then turn down the heat and simmer for 10 minutes or until the sweet potatoes are soft. Add the roasted red bell peppers and simmer for a further five minutes. Remove from the heat and leave to stand for five minutes before blitzing in a blender or food processor. Drizzle with olive oil and stir in the chopped coriander to serve.
QUINOA RAINBOW BOWL Serves: 2 Ingredients: 100g quinoa 1 tbsp Lucy Bee coconut oil, plus a little extra for the halloumi 60g chorizo, chopped 1 green chilli, deseeded and diced 1 yellow bell pepper, deseeded and chopped 1 red bell pepper, deseeded and chopped 6 long-stem broccoli florets, each chopped into three pieces Handful of parsley, chopped 100g halloumi, thinly sliced Juice of 1 lemon 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil Lucy Bee Himalayan salt and ground black pepper
Cook the quinoa according to the packet instructions. Melt the coconut oil in a deep frying pan over a medium-high heat and, when hot, add the chorizo, chilli, yellow and red bell peppers and broccoli. Fry for five minutes or until cooked to your liking, stirring occasionally. Turn the heat down to low and add the cooked quinoa, then stir and leave for a few minutes to allow the quinoa to absorb the oil from the chorizo. Season (bearing in mind that the chorizo and halloumi are both salty) and stir in the parsley. Divide the mixture between two plates or one big serving dish. Place the frying pan back over a medium-high heat, add a very small amount of coconut oil and, when hot, place the halloumi slices in the pan and cook for about two minutes on each side until turning golden, then place over the quinoa mixture. Mix the lemon juice with the olive oil and drizzle over the halloumi and quinoa to serve.
VEGAN CHOCOLATE CAKE Serves: 10 Ingredients: 100g Lucy Bee coconut oil, melted, plus extra for greasing 200g gluten-free plain (allpurpose) flour 100g coconut sugar 85g Lucy Bee cacao powder 1 tsp gluten-free baking powder 2 tsp bicarbonate of soda 2 bananas 1 apple, peeled and cored 1 tsp vanilla extract 200g coconut yoghurt, or vegan yoghurt of your choice 220ml hot water For the filling and topping: 320ml coconut cream (thick coconut milk), refrigerated ½ tsp vanilla extract 1 tbsp icing sugar, plus extra for dusting 200g blackberries, strawberries and raspberries, or other berries of your choice
Preheat the oven to 150°C. Grease and line two 20cm cake tins. Combine the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl. In a food processor, purée the bananas and apple together until smooth and then transfer to a second bowl. Add the melted coconut oil, vanilla and yoghurt to the purée. Mix together, add to the dry ingredients and mix until well combined. Slowly add the hot water while stirring the mixture. Once combined, pour into the prepared tins and bake for 40 minutes until a skewer inserted into the middle of one comes out clean. Leave to cool in the tins for five minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely. To make the filling and topping, put the coconut cream into a bowl with the vanilla and icing sugar and, using an electric hand-held mixer, whip until combined. Store in the fridge until the cake is completely cool. Smooth half the coconut cream over one cake, top with half the berries and place the second cake on top. Spread the remaining coconut cream on top and add the remaining berries. Finally, sift a light dusting of icing sugar over the top and serve.
“We’ve made this as healthy as possible while still giving you a mouthwatering treat”
Recipes extracted from Coconut Oil: Recipes for Real Life by Lucy Bee (Quadrille, £15). Photography by Dan Jones
THIS WEEK’S LUNCHES,
d e t r o S Stop skipping lunch and binging on snacks by giving your body what it needs at midday with help from nutritionist Julie Montagu
k, put your hands up – who’s guilty of packing their day full of so many meetings that they end up missing lunch in favour of checking their emails and writing up notes? Or who’s been so busy looking after their children and getting their chores done that their healthy lunchtime salad has been ditched for a packet of crisps on the go? Guaranteed, one day or another we’ve all done it – but ploughing on through your day without stopping for a break can actually be more harmful than it is beneficial. As nutritionist Julie Montagu explains: “Eating a healthy lunch keeps our sugar levels balanced, maintains a sharp mind throughout the rest of the day and prevents major binge eating when you get home from a stressful day.” So, taking the time to boost your body’s supply of energy at lunchtime is key – especially if you’re also working out in the morning or evening. And, regardless of what you may think, you don’t need to spend a fortune or hours in the kitchen in order to create something packed full of flavour and goodness. Here, Julie provides her top lunchtime recipes for a healthy week. Get your lunchboxes at the ready!
MONDAY: Bean and beetroot salad
For a healthy start to the week, try making a bean and beetroot salad. This combines ingredients that are full of nutrients and antioxidants and is super quick to make too! Simply quarter eight cooked beetroots (which you can easily find at your local supermarket), and mix with one tin of white beans and a handful of pine nuts. Then blend the following in a food processor to make your dressing: one tomato, one garlic clove, a handful each of fresh mint, parley and basil, two tablespoons of capers, one tablespoon of olive oil, the juice of one lemon and salt and pepper. If Monday is your gym day, give your lunch a boost of protein by adding a chicken breast on top.
TUESDAY: Farro and chickpea stew
As the weather gets colder, warming lunches are the order of the day and this farro and chickpea stew is perfect for autumn. Farro is fast gaining attention as the new super grain on the block and it's a great source of protein, fibre and iron. To make two servings of the stew, roast 300g of halved cherry tomatoes, three minced garlic cloves and one small, diced onion in the oven for 15 minutes. Meanwhile cook the farro in a saucepan. Once done, drain the water and add a tin of drained and rinsed chickpeas to the pan. Stir in a large handful of spinach and another of rocket, and then serve the farro mixture with the baked vegetables on top, a garnish of basil and a sprinkling of salt.
Recipes adapted from Superfoods Superfast by Julie Montagu (Quadrille £18.99). For more information about Julie visit juliemontagu.com. Photo: Yuki Sugiura
“An avocado is a great on-thego snack (just remember to also take a sharp knife and teaspoon with you) but don’t open it until you’re ready to eat it!”
WEDNESDAY: Walnut and black bean wraps
For a quick and healthy veggie lunch that can be prepped in advance try these walnut and black bean wraps. They're a big hit with my kids (minus the cayenne pepper) and you can add cheese or sour cream to make it a bit heartier. Blitz one tin of drained and rinsed black beans with 100g of walnuts, 100g of sun-dried tomatoes, half a teaspoon each of ground cumin and paprika and a quarter of a teaspoon of cayenne pepper in a food processor. Line two wholemeal tortillas with this mixture and then add shredded lettuce and avocado, a squeeze of lime juice and some salt and pepper.
THURSDAY: Curried couscous
Curry isn't just for supper – I can have a curry any time of the day (well, maybe not for breakfast but definitely for lunch!). If you're a worker, this can be made the night before to heat up at lunch. Simply fry half a diced onion and one sliced carrot for a minute or two before adding two tablespoons of green curry paste and half a teaspoon each of ground turmeric and paprika. After two minutes, pour in one tin of coconut milk and 200ml of veg stock. Add in 185g of wholewheat giant couscous and one tin of drained and rinsed chickpeas and leave to simmer for 10 minutes. Once cooked, squeeze over some lime juice and garnish with some coriander. You can also try adding prawns or chicken.
FRIDAY: Spicy noodle jar
By the end of the week, your cooking motivation may be running dry – so I have chosen a really easy and quick way to finish. I first thought about making a 'lunch in a jar' after seeing something similar at my local supermarket, but wow, were they expensive! This is one of my own healthier and cheaper versions. Divide the following between two kilner jars – one packet of instant rice noodles, one vegetable stock cube, 80g of cooked edamame beans, two sliced red chillies, one chopped red pepper, 120g kale and one teaspoon of ground ginger. When you're ready to eat, just add a cup of hot water to the jar, seal the lid and shake well to allow the stock cube to dissolve. It's that easy!
Why vitamin D is
ESSENTIAL for muscle health
Eliçca de Vazirani from joint care company Flexable Health reveals five ways that vitamin D could boost your workout
Looking for a way to improve your performance in the gym? Making sure that you have the right levels of vitamin D in your body could be the answer. This vitamin is essential for musculoskeletal health as it promotes calcium absorption from the bowel, enables mineralisation of newly formed osteoid tissue in bone and plays an important role in muscle function.
1/ Vitamin D plays a role in neuromuscular functioning
Vitamin D regulates neuromuscular functioning (which relates to both the nervous and muscular systems) and impacts protein synthesis. Research has shown that those with low levels of vitamin D have decreased strength, weakness and muscle wasting. All the studies that used daily doses between 800 and 1000 IU consistently showed beneficial effects on muscle strength and balance.
2/ Vitamin D is vital for immune health
The Daily Telegraph has reported that “vitamin D ‘triggers and arms’ the immune system” and researchers believe that vitamin D plays a key
role in boosting the immune system. Vitamin D affects some aspects of immunity including the development of certain autoimmune diseases. So, how does this relate to muscle tissue? The symptoms of each autoimmune disease vary tremendously. From cold hands and alterations in insulin regulation to feeling fatigued, many of the symptoms can make you feel downright crummy at times. And when you don’t feel up to it, training may be the last thing on your mind. Or, even if you do get yourself to the gym, your workouts may suffer.
3/ Vitamin D promotes lean body fat percentage When you think of muscle tissue, you probably aren’t thinking of fat infiltration. However, if you have insufficient or deficient levels of vitamin D, you are likely to have fatty muscles. Vitamin D promotes a lean body fat percentage by preventing fat infiltration into muscle. Fat infiltration in muscle tissue affects strength and power and can impair physical functioning.
4/ Vitamin D is key for bone health
Vitamin D promotes calcium absorption and helps maintain calcium concentrations in the blood as well as mineralisation of bone. What does this have to do with muscle? Bone pulls
on muscle making it stronger. If you want strong bones, you better have strong muscles and vice versa!
5/ Vitamin D may boost your mood
Serotonin is an important neurotransmitter that acts on nearly all of the brain’s cells, influencing mood, sleep, appetite and many other brain and biological functions. Vitamin D helps encourage serotonin production and release. And, let’s face it, the happier you are, the better your workout will be!
National Vitamin D Awareness Week takes place from October 24th to 30th in the UK this year. To support this initiative, Flexable Health is giving away FREE packs of FLEX-D3 (Vitamin D3 Supplements). Hurry, as the offer is limited to only 500 packs! Go to flexablehealth.com/D3 and enter code FREED3 at the checkout to claim yours now.* *Terms and conditions apply.
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your fitness REPORT
Wellness techniques for your mind, body and soul
Beat workplace anxiety with this 15-minute sequence, designed by the Almond Board of California.
Seated, lengthen your spine and turn your chin to your left shoulder. Inhale, then exhale to draw your chin down past your chest to your other shoulder. Inhale and repeat side-to-side three times.
Then, inhale and lift your shoulders to your ears, holding your breath in. Exhale through your mouth and release your shoulders.
Repeat three times. Finally, sit and inhale to lengthen your spine. Exhale and take your left arm across your right thigh and twist to the right. Hold for four breaths and repeat on the other side.
Your Fitness Says... FINISH THE SEQUENCE BY NOURISHING YOUR BODY WITH A HEALTHY SNACK, SUCH AS A HANDFUL OF PROTEIN-PACKED ALMONDS
HAVE YOU TRIED?
Dry body brushing
There are various claims surrounding dry body brushing, including everything from eliminating toxins to reducing the appearance of cellulite, but what’s certain about this process is that it’s a great stress reliever. It’s a common practice at the beginning of body treatments as it helps to boost your circulation and shed dead skin cells thanks to its exfoliating effect, leaving your skin looking smoother and brighter. You can also try body brushing at home – you’ll just need a firm brush with natural bristles. Move it briskly in circular and sweeping motions all over your body to encourage lymph flow. Try it in the morning to really wake you up!
The best and latest ways to a healthy, happy mind
OUR top THREE: salt body scrubs FRESHING RE 1
AXING REL 2
TOXIFYING E D 3
Revive your body and mood with the L’Occitane Verbena Body Salt Scrub, which combines salts from the Mediterranean with refreshing notes of verbena, orange, geranium and lemon tree. £27, loccitane.com
A blend of relaxing body oils, nourishing sweet almond oil and muscle-soothing rosemary, bay and lavender, the Espa Relaxing Salt Scrub will calm and relax your mind. £37, espaskincare.com
With an invigorating combination of black pepper, grapefruit and ginger essential oils, the Neal’s Yard Remedies Seaweed Salt Scrub stimulates the senses and exfoliates the skin. £18.50, nealsyardremedies.com
Words of WISDOM Fresh air is not just good for our health, it can also help us to feel confident about how we look. Scientists from Anglia Ruskin University have found that people who spend more time outside have an increased positive body image and higher self-esteem – so what are you waiting for? Stretching for just 10 minutes a day could help to ease symptoms of menopause and even depression, as a study published in the journal Menopause revealed. While it didn’t help to reduce hot flushes, it did boost mood, improve sleep quality and alleviate aches and pains.
“Yoga gave me the ability to calm down. It has reinforced and grounded my own spiritual beliefs” Christy Turlington, supermodel
MANTRA of the MONTH “STRIVE FOR PROGRESS, NOT PERFECTION”
LIFE LESSONS VICTORIA WILLS, A NUTRITIONIST, HYPNOTHERAPIST, NEUROSCIENTIST AND THE FOUNDER OF THE NUBEGINNINGS WEIGHT LOSS PLAN, TELLS US HOW TO STICK TO A REGIME: “The only way to stay committed to your diet is to set yourself a goal that really means something to you. It doesn’t have to be something that you announce to the world, but it has to be one that makes you smile to yourself. Once you’ve set your target, break it down into weekly aims. So, if you know that to fit into those jeans you need to lose 10lbs in five weeks, then your goal is to lose 2lbs every week. If your target is really important to you, then every decision you make during each day will be one that leads you towards it, and suddenly staying true to your weight loss plan will be easy.”
Dream away As we all know, a good night’s rest is essential for both your physical and mental health, but for many people this basic requirement doesn’t come easily. The smartphone app Deep Sleep with Andrew Johnson aims to change that. Through a range of relaxation techniques and visualisations, it will help you to enjoy all of the benefits of a sleeping pattern, helping you to drift off naturally every night. £2.29, itunes.co.uk
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YOGA CLASSES FOR A MONTH
We’ve teamed up with online yoga class provider Yogaia to give Your Fitness readers a month’s free membership to the site
ant to have the best yoga teachers in London instructing you personally in your living room? Yogaia is the world’s first live, online and interactive yoga studio, where you can practice anytime, anywhere, and thanks to Your Fitness magazine you can enjoy a month’s worth of classes for free! Yogaia brings you not just different styles of yoga, but also Pilates, Barre, HIIT and even meditation classes directly into your living room. There are more than 100 live classes online for all levels of participants each week and on top of this there is also a library of a month’s worth of recorded classes, so if you miss the live class you can just tune in to the recording anytime, anywhere, and practice whenever you want! To take part in a live class, you simply book yourself a slot and then the teacher will be waiting to inspire, encourage and advise you right there and then. Plus, if you choose to switch on your webcam the teacher can actually see you (and only the teacher, not
other members) so they can give you individual attention and adjustments taking your practice to a whole new level. Unlike watching other videos or DVDs, but like a regular session, Yogaia’s classes change each week, so you’ll never get bored. With classes covering themes such as HIIT and meditation, to vinyasa flow, ashtanga, yin and hatha yoga, there really is something for everyone. And so, whether you’re a beginner getting to grips with the wonderful world of yoga, an experienced yogi coming back to practice after a break, or someone who just wants to expand their experience and take things to a new level you will be catered for at Yogaia. Yogaia is suitable for any device as well – so you can turn your living room into a world class studio via your laptop or tablet, or carry it in your pocket with the site’s award-winning Yogaia app. It really does mean that you have no excuse to get fit! To sign up for a month’s free membership visit yogaia.com/yourfitness and enter the code YOURFITNESS when prompted.* *Terms and conditions apply. Readers must sign up before 21/10/16 to take advantage of the offer.
Relieve PMS with
CBD hemp oil Make that time of the month more bearable
WHAT CAN IT DO?
Noticed hemp popping up on the list of ingredients for health products recently? This is because the plant has gained popularity recently thanks to the huge amount of medical attention it’s gathered across the world. It may surprise you to know that every living creature (with the exception of insects) actually produces its own type of cannabinoids, similar to those found in hemp, called endo-cannabinoids. These are believed to play a role in pain relief, inflammation, appetite, mood and many other behaviours, and so by increasing the natural cannabinoid levels in the brain we are able to take advantage of some of these benefits. Cannabidiol (CBD), is a cannabinoid found in naturally high levels in hemp plants and is considered beneficial in the treatment of a wide variety of conditions including diabetes, epilepsy and autoimmune diseases, as well as relieving the symptoms of PMS.
It’s a time of the month that none of us particularly look forward to, but PMS can affect some of us more than others. Unfortunately, it can actually be debilitating for some women, with many experiencing symptoms so severe it limits their daily lives. From bloating, weight gain, breast tenderness and extreme uterine cramps to clumsiness, irritability and interrupted sleep, PMS can affect women for up to a week every month. With this in mind, in recent years an increasing amount of scientific research has focused on the medicinal effects of hemp, in particular the benefits of CBD. Scientific research has identified CBD as being anti-inflammatory and conducive to muscle relaxation, which is what makes it great for helping PMS. By helping the uterine muscles relax, reducing insomnia and soothing the emotional symptoms associated with PMS, CBD can help to bring balance to the body.
HOW TO USE IT
CBD oil company Roo & Co. is a leader in medicinal hemp products in the UK. With its own brand of CBD oil in development with Spanish organic hemp growers, its products range from low to high CBD content, available in capsules, whole flowers (perfect for smoothies!), crystals, pastes and oils. All of Roo and Co.’s products are legal in the UK, due to the very low levels of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) – you will not experience any ‘high’. The CBD content of its oils is high and is extracted from organic hemp fields where no harmful pesticides are used. Looking for a new way to curb your PMS? Roo & Co. is kindly offering Your Fitness readers a 10 percent discount on CBD products when you quote the coupon code YF12016 at rooandco.co.uk
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FIND YOUR WORKOUT
ZEN WORDS: Sarah Ivory
A dry throat, sweaty palms, pacing heart – if you’re freaking out before working out, it’s time to reclaim your exercise calm. And meditation is the answer…
et’s be honest, exercise isn’t always exciting. In fact, sometimes the prospect of pushing your body through a pain barrier can be downright scary. But, unless you’ve been hiding on a remote island, you’ll know that meditation is the go-to practice for harnessing workout calm. It’s pretty popular among the pros – including the likes of Tom Daley, Novak Djokovic and Michael Phelps – and there are many more fitness experts who swear by the powers of the ancient discipline. Promising to decrease workout anxiety and help exercisers cope with pain, meditation is fast coming to the fore as a great tool in an athlete’s arsenal.
MEDITATION GOES MAINSTREAM The mental therapy has come a long way in recent years. Once something people did for religious reasons, meditation has grown into a pastime that’s stylish and secular. Gyms have pioneered it as a way of gaining workout mojo, with international fitness company Equinox launching HeadStrong – a workout class that blends interval training with meditation – back in March. Headspace, a meditation app that claims to be ‘your gym membership for the mind’, even boasts one-off sessions for runners, walkers or cyclists. Seasoned competitors swear by it: “If I have a quiet mind and complete focus, I feel that I can harmonise my body, mind and soul better, which adds an inner dimension to physical fitness,” explains Tejvan Pettinger, a national cyclist for Sri Chimnoy Cycling Team. “Meditation also helps me to enjoy sport more, whatever the result of a competition.”
ZONE OUT TO TUNE UP There’s no doubt that meditation is getting trendier among fitness fans – but why? For starters, the ancient discipline reduces stress and helps athletes focus on performance, which is pretty handy when faced with a tough training session or competition. And then there’s the fact that the benefits of meditation are backed up by oodles of science. Researchers from Brown University in America, for example, suggest that meditation can make people better equipped to control how the brain senses pain and emotions, which could help athletes to overcome pain during exercise. And further data in the British Journal of Sports Medicine reports that elite shooters clocked better performances after a four-week meditation schedule. “This is almost certainly as a result of the reduction in performance anxiety,” explains Jess Cook, a Vedic meditation teacher at Will Williams Meditation (willwilliamsmeditation.co.uk). “The stress of competition can cause the brain’s amygdala (neurons responsible for the detection of fear) to go into overdrive and release anxiety hormones. This anxiety response is so energy depleting. By meditating in advance, you can help calm down the activation of the amygdala so that you are energised and motivated, with faster reaction times and quicker recovery rates.”
GO BACK TO BALANCE The thing is that meditating does more than improve performance. It can also help to improve recovery after exercise, claims John McDermott, founder of psychology2perform.com. “Arousal control – or being ‘in the zone’ – is one of the fundamental pillars of peak performance, which is why meditation can ensure you’re more robust to unexpected stressors,” agrees John. “But the physiology that’s at play as a result of meditating, such as lower heart rate, decreased blood pressure, regulated breathing, brain wave variation and the slowing of digestive processes, is also crucial in helping an exerciser recover after exertion.” It’s a matter of bringing your mental and physical state back to balance. If exercise, which increases heart rate and ups breathing rate, stresses the body, meditation helps return it to a normal state. As a bonus, studies also show that meditation can improve sleep quality and boost the immune system – both essential for optimal recovery. It’s win-win.
5 STEPS TO A BETTER WORKOUT Interested in reclaiming your workout calm? The good news is you don’t have to be a professional sportsperson to benefit from meditating. The mind therapy is a great practice for all fitness fans, whether you train to compete or work out to lose weight. “In sports, we need energy, strength and dynamism. When we meditate, we make our mind calm and quiet,” explains renowned spiritual leader Sri Chinmoy in Sport & Meditation: The inner dimension of sport. “If inside us there is peace, then we will derive tremendous strength from our inner life… that peace will come as solid strength in sports, whether running or jumping or throwing.” Try this fivestep meditation from Jess Cook at Will Williams Meditation to give it a go.
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Find a relaxed and comfortable place where you can sit with your back supported and feel at ease. Gently bring your attention to your breath. Take five deep inhalations and exhalations. Next, tune into any sensations you may be feeling on the skin, such as temperature change, sunlight or the wind.
When you have scanned your body in this way, bring your attention to the inside of your body – what is the dominant sensation that you feel? Are you aching or in pain anywhere, or are there any parts of your body which feel particularly relaxed?
Finally, visualise yourself feeling relaxed and calm, as if your body is being filled up with energy from the surrounding nature. When you are ready, open your eyes.
THE ZEN LIST It’s not just elite athletes who enjoy a spot of meditation – the über-fit A-list swear by it too! KATY PERRY: “I start the day with transcendental meditation. It puts me in the best mood. I wake up and just prop myself up in bed for 20 minutes. It’s the only time my mind gets absolute rest.” KRISTIN BELL: “Do meditative yoga for 10 minutes every morning. When you have a problem – whether it’s road rage, your guy, or work – meditation allows everything to unfold the way it’s supposed to.” GWYNETH PALTROW: “My New Year’s resolution is to learn how to meditate. It’s always sounded like something I should do, but I don’t know how to. My friends who do it say it’s really freakin’ brilliant. They say you can’t know the peace/awareness/contentment until you do it.” KATE HUDSON: “In order to be the best version of you, you need selfnurturing and self-acceptance. When you realise this, you have started the steps to achieving attainable goals… I find that when I meditate consistently my mind and body are at their best.” JENNIFER ANISTON: “I started doing transcendental meditation and that’s really changed everything. Starting your day off with that and ending with that is pretty powerful. Twenty minutes: you just notice the difference… so I try to meditate first thing when I wake up.”
YOUR FITNESS SEPT 2016 ad master_ROP 19/08/2016 16:09 Page 102
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we swap our mindset from one of sabotage to a more positive one it starts to feel good, and using affirmations like “I make choices which support me getting fit because it makes me feel healthy and energised” reminds us that there is a much bigger goal in sight.
Try it now: make a wellbeing chart
Write down the areas in your life you would like to focus on. It could be your diet, body, health, mind or any other area. Next to the word, write down three things you can introduce to your weekly or daily routine which would help you improve this part of your life. For example, if you have chosen to focus on your body because you want to feel more energised or toned, you may want to write down suggestions such as a daily walk or a weekly yoga session. If you have chosen your mind, you could write that you wish to incorporate mindfulness into your day. Once you have chosen the area you want to work on and written down three ways you can focus on them, choose one and write a commitment statement to yourself. It could be: ‘I commit to a 10 minute walk daily’ or ‘I commit to five minutes of meditation each morning’. Make this your wellbeing statement by adding the reasons for your commitment. For example: ‘I commit to a 10 minute walk daily because it will help me gain clarity and burn calories which will make me feel happy’ or ‘I commit to a 10 minute daily walk because it makes me feel grounded, focused and more relaxed, which helps me have clarity and energy. Taking time for me feels good.’ Making a commitment to ourselves and focusing on the reasons why we are doing it really helps to keep a new routine going. You can go back to this statement whenever you need reminding.
mind matters A
Each month our favourite motivation guru guides us back to the straight and narrow
s a life coach I often speak to people who aren’t seeing the results they want and this can be a common issue – especially when people think that just adding a few trips to the gym is going to transform their bodies without them having to make any other changes to their lifestyle or diet. If you are feeling this way then I want you to ask yourself this: “Am I sabotaging or supporting my workouts with my diet and lifestyle choices?” You see, what happens sometimes is that people start to incorporate exercise into their weekly routine but at the same time start to make allowances in the diet, so suddenly it becomes okay to have another glass of wine or another sugary treat because they are counteracting it with their workouts. From my perspective, this is fine if you don’t mind not seeing certain weight loss results and if you didn’t start focusing on your fitness because you wanted to tone or shape your body. However, if you have begun exercising more often to achieve certain goals you have to make changes in other areas of your life to support this. Getting the right amount of rest and eating according to what you want to achieve is key, and this includes making choices like cutting down on alcohol, swapping sweets, chocolate and crisps for vegetables and fruit and looking at portion control. When
Mindful self awareness Meditate Your Weight by Tiffany Cruikshank Whether you are trying to lose weight or just love your body, this book offers a gentle introduction on how to become more mindful about yourself. It may be called Meditate Your Weight but it doesn’t just talk about weight in the way we usually think of it – more in the sense of what’s weighing you down and how that might affect your relationship with your body. It’s based around meditation and works on a 21-day schedule which is helpful to follow. It’s a great guide if you are new to meditation and gives lots of helpful tools on how to get started. The author has a background in yoga and has also included a really simple and easy to follow set of asanas, which are designed specifically to help balance and stimulate the metabolism and nervous system.
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Bursting with all the antioxidants, nutrients and important vitamins that help your body to detoxify, Finnberry berry powders provide a convenient way to instantly add goodness to your diet and are 100 percent natural. They are made with wild handpicked berries from the clean Nordic nature and can simply be stirred into your yoghurt or sprinkled on top of your porridge. The powders are super concentrated and one teaspoon is the same as a handful of fresh berries. £13.99 per 100g, finnberry.co.uk and amazon.co.uk
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When it comes to diet and fitness, a whole new genre of nutrition has arrived. Purition is an innovative natural alternative to junk filled meal replacements and protein shakes. Made in the UK, the difference with these blends is that all of the nasty synthetic ingredients have been kicked out and replaced with a cocktail of powerful natural foods. Ready in 30 seconds, they are perfect for breakfast, lunch or a post workout snack, and are available in a range of exciting flavours. From just £1.38 per serving purition.co.uk
Use your NOODLE
We all know how hard it can be to make time for lunch when you’re juggling a million and one other things, so when you’re on the go, grab a quick, easy and tasty Zero Noodles Snack Pot – the lowest calorie pot noodle in the world, and the first to be made with shirataki noodles. Not only is it super low in calories (only 77 per pot) and fat, but it’s also largely composed of soluble plant fibre, which can help to stabilise blood sugar levels, preventing cravings, hunger and over-eating. £2.99, available at Holland & Barrett. Find out more at zeronoodles.com
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Stur is a natural fruit flavour water booster that is lightly sweetened with stevia leaf extract. With no sugar or calories and 100 percent of your daily requirement for vitamin C, it may help to maintain a healthy immune system and avoid fatigue. Available in six flavours with new options on their way. Each bottle makes six litres and it’s the ideal afternoon pick-me-up. £3.49 sturdrinks.eu
THE 3PM boost
Are you a chocoholic? Try the new Chia Pod Dark Cacao for an energy-boosting, guilt-free snack made with cacao (the rawest form of chocolate), chia seeds and almond milk. Packed with omega 3s and bursting with fibre, it’s also gluten and dairy-free and vegan. £2, available in selected Tesco and Wholefoods stores.
Drink YOUR VITS
Ensure your body is getting everything it needs with Trévo’s blend of vitamins and minerals, amino acids, essential fatty acids, powerful antioxidants and more. All combined, it makes a incredibly delicious, highly bio-available liquid that the whole family will love. To buy Trévo (£65.53 per bottle), or for the opportunity to work with them head to trevo.life/DavidLondon/
Cracker Drinks’ range of natural fruit juice drinks is the perfect option for those looking for healthy convenience. Each serving represents one of your five a day while being less than 90 calories per serving. Besides tasting deliciously refreshing, they contain no added sugar or artificial sweeteners. £1.50 crackerdrinks.com
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your fitness REPORT
Fire up your fitness this month with something a little bit different
If you’re looking to take up a new activity, consider martial arts, which is a sport with lots of health benefits that you can take advantage of. Not only will it increase your self-confidence, it’s also a great stress reliever, helping to release tension and aggression. Martial arts classes are high-aerobic sessions which use every muscle group in the body, improving your stamina, muscle tone, flexibility, balance and strength. By joining a class, you’ll experience a total body workout which includes moves from various disciplines, such as boxing, kickboxing, kung fu and taekwondo, as well as learning potentially life-saving self-defence skills.
Your Fitness Says...
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Ever wondered about the point of those black and yellow straps suspended in the corner of your gym? We break down the basics of TRX training
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Try IT You’ve mastered the kettlebell swing and have pumping dumbbells well and truly down, so it’s time to strap yourself in and discover a whole new way of building up that strong core – the TRX ropes. Invented by a former US Navy SEAL, the concept behind TRX (short for total-body resistance exercise) is as simple as it is effective. Once you’ve anchored the straps somewhere secure (if they’re not already fixed in your gym) and hooked in either your hands or feet, your own bodyweight and gravity essentially does the rest of the work for you! That’s not to say it’s easy, oh no. With part of your body suspended above the ground you’ll need to work hard keep your balance, engaging your core, back, shoulders and hips in order to maintain control as you work your way through a number of resistance movements. Not convinced it’s for you? We’ve spoken to James Russell, personal trainer at Embody Fitness (embodyfitness.co.uk) to find out why TRX is worth a try...
TRX training is a good workout
because it’s a great all round training tool. The difficulty is adjustable to your level of strength, it is fully adaptable to your body size whether you’re tall, short, male or female, and it encompasses core stability through movement. All in all, it offers challenging movement patterns, core conditioning and flexibility demands.
It’s suitable for everyone and there are a huge number of people who currently use it as a training tool, ranging from elite athletes and professional teams to injury and rehab clinics. TRX is a great tool for all to use, including older populations, those with injuries and those looking to add a new dimension to their training – meaning that everybody can have a great and challenging workout. If you’re feeling nervous to try it,
don’t be scared, the TRX straps can take up to 500kg of weight depending on the model. Take it easy at first – in fact, slowing it down will create more tension for a better muscle contraction and proper stabilisation. Once you’re comfortable on the straps, make the exercises harder by stepping towards the point of pivot. You may see people trying all kinds of complicated moves, but always seek professional advice before jumping to the most challenging exercise. Just like anything, seeking help will ensure you stay injury free and at the correct difficulty level.
TRX MOVES TO TRY SIDE PLANK
Engages your abdominal muscles, especially the obliques
CROSSING BALANCE LUNGE
Targets your chest, shoulders and triceps
Great for building leg and core strength, as well as balance
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With your body facing the TRX attachment point, take hold of the handles with your palms facing down and your arms straight out. Stand upright, tighten your core and lift your foot off the ground so that you are balancing on your left foot. With your right foot still off the ground, do a reverse lunge, swinging the right leg behind your left leg. Push back up through your left heel to bring your body back to the starting position, making sure to keep your body upright. Complete 10 reps then repeat on the other leg.
Place both feet in the loops and come into a suspended plank position, shoulders over hands, body in a straight line from head to toe. Slowly, roll onto your left side so that your left elbow is directly under your left shoulder – your top leg will be in front of your bottom leg and your core engaged. The heel of the front foot can touch the toe of the bottom foot. Keeping your bottom hip lifted to help stabilise your body, reach your top arm towards the ceiling. Hold the side plank for 30 seconds. Switch sides.
Start by standing facing away from the TRX attachment point and hold the handles in front of you, with your palms facing down. Get into a vertical plank position at about a 45 degree angle to the floor, engaging your core. Slowly lower your chest toward your hands. When your hands are in line with your chest, stop. Slowly, and in a controlled manner, push yourself up so your elbows are straight. That’s one chest press rep. Aim for three sets of 10 reps.
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DID YOU KNOW... The following pro athletes incorporate TRX into their regular training regimes in order to help them with their disciplines: l Andy Murray (tennis) l Dara Torres (swimming) l Rory Mcllroy (golf) l Heather Mitts (football) Stats from heartcore.co.uk, Londonâ€™s largest provider of TRX
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works it out
Your Fitness’ intrepid columnist stakes out the newest classes and takes on the latest challenges
s far as I was aware, Cumbrian wrestling is for middle-aged, toothless men wearing embroidered underpants on the outside of their clothes, but it seems that my memory is just as outdated as the view that wrestling is just for boys. In fact, you could argue that this full-contact, traditional sport, which originates from the Lake District, is as progressive as they come – women earn the same amount of prize money as the men and participation among young women has reportedly been on the increase in recent years. All-female competitions began 10 years ago, but up until 1991 women competed against men. The story goes that when a female competitor beat a male in 1991, the men complained that they were being put off the sport. Naturally, I decided to give it a go! The aim of the game is quite simply to get your rival on their back. The competition starts by shaking your opponent’s hand, before locking your arms and heads together in an awkward sort of hug, with your bum sticking out behind you. On the referee’s command, you wrestle, or, as in my case, get flung to the floor, legs over head, landing in a muddy pile or next to a cow pat. Yes, my masterclass took place on a field inside a ring marked by sawdust, which is how the summer competition is performed
(although some bouts do occur inside, and training is often conducted at sports halls). I was taught a series of techniques designed to floor your opponent effortlessly and painlessly by local wrestling expert Connie Hodgson. Most of these moves involve attempting to make the other person unsteady by sweeping their feet from under them with yours, or turning into them so you can throw them over your shoulder and onto the ground. Unlike Connie, who always managed to catch me off-guard and had me on the floor in the blink of an eye, I couldn’t quite time the shuffling and shoving right to successfully knock her off balance. Strength is certainly an advantage in this sport, but Connie is far from big and bruising, in fact she’s the opposite – with a baby-face, sweet smile and a giggle that threw me off as I didn’t want to hurt her! Unfortunately, she didn’t mind hurting me though, and after a couple of hours and far too many falls to the floor, I called it quits, sure that I could feel my brain shaking in my head. While I can’t say that I’ll be signing up for the upcoming world championships, it was a refreshing change to get stuck in to a full-body contact sport where aggression is not only advantageous, but encouraged. One thing’s for sure though, I definitely won’t be sniggering at those embroidered pants any more – they’re a real life reminder that superheroes walk among us.
This month Helen’s been...
In the French Alps I’ve spent lots of time in the French Alps in winter, but a couple of weeks ago I went for the first time in the summer to enjoy the climbing, walking and hiking. I’m happy to report that the Chamonix and Mont Blanc did not disappoint, as there were plenty of walkers and hikers, and enough activities to get your heart racing.
Alexa Jean Fitness Alexa Jean is a fitness enthusiast and mum who works out with her little girl. She’s created various workout programmes designed to target specific muscle groups, allowing even the most busy of people to achieve their goals. I love watching her Instagram videos – you can find her at @alexajeanfitness and alexajeanfitness.com
LA Science hair thickening products I feel like I’ve been growing my hair for as long as I can remember. The LA Science serum (£60, amazon.co.uk) is making a difference to my locks, and, even though it’s a leave-in treatment it’s not greasy, so I don’t kiss my hubby good night looking like I’ve showered in chip fat.
TWEET HELEN @HelenSkelton
Getting ready to watch The Super League Grand Final As the championship-deciding game of the Super League rugby competition, the Super League Grand Final takes place on the 8th October at Old Trafford. It’s a winner-takes-all final which will see big guys doing big tackles to battle it out for the glory. Don’t miss it! YourFitness 115
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your fitness REVIEWS
This month WE’VE BEEN... Our top rated picks of all that’s new in the world of fitness and health
Features writer Jessica Harris puts the latest wellness products to the test GETTING OUR JUICE ON When our favourite farm, Daylesford, announced that it had launched a new range of cold pressed milks and juices, breakfast quickly became our favourite meal of the day. Wrapped in chic and modern packaging, the organic food brand offers kefir to keep your digestion in check and a cacao milkshake for a sweet treat as well as pure fruit and vegetable concoctions to keep your vitamin content topped up. We loved the cocktail of beetroot, orange and turmeric and cucumber, spinach, lime, parsley, mint and aloe vera to give us an energy boost mid-week. From £2.99 daylesford.com
straightforward phases: Cleanse, Rebuild & Maintain. Each phase incorporates an easy to follow plan, nutritionally balanced and delicious recipes, targeted step-by-step exercise programmes and mindful meditations. Expect to find the brand’s best-selling supplements including Body Brilliance, Beauty Food and Serenity as well as a selection of herbal teas entitled I Am Slender, I Am Recharged, I Am Cleansed and I Am Relaxed, favoured by celebrities such as Lara Stone, Emilia Clarke and Rosie HuntingtonWhiteley. £180 bodyism.com and Harrods.com.
DETOXING When a new season begins, there’s nothing more rewarding than a total cleanse to prepare yourself for the months ahead. Bodyism’s Detox Box is available exclusively at Harrods and contains everything you need to improve your health, body, mind and life in just nine convenient days. The programme is split into three
“THE FACT I NOW HAVE A DIAGNOSIS HAS GIVEN ME AN ENORMOUS SENSE OF RELIEF” After four years of chronic neck pain and countless physiotherapy appointments, I had accepted my fate that discomfort was going to be a part of my normal day-to-day routine. So when I had the unique opportunity to try out a stand-up MRI scanner, I figured I had nothing to lose. Although my speed dial consists of a sports masseuse, chiropractor and osteopath, I had never explored the idea of an MRI as the mere thought of lying in an enclosed tube sent my neck into a spasm. Sitting in the open scanner, I was strapped and bolted (it’s not as scary as it sounds!) into place to
make sure that the images taken were taken were accurate and settled in for half an hour with Daniel Craig (on screen only, but a girl can dream). Not only does an open scanner make claustophobia a thing of the past, it also allows your joints to be under 11 times more pressure than if you were laying down. Although this sounds like a negative, it actually shows how your joints are affected when they’re under your natural bodyweight in both flexion and extension positions. After dragging myself away from Mr Bond, I had a one-to-one consultation with
another British gent, Professor Smith – as one of the founders of MRI, I couldn’t have been in safer hands. Going through each of my scans, he carefully explained that I had joint hypermobility syndrome. Although there’s no cure, the fact that I finally had a diagnosis after four years of guesswork and unsuccessful treatments gave me an enormous sense of relief. Thanks to MRI London, I now have a physio plan to stabilise my joints and minimise the pain I have been feeling day in, day out. I feel better already! Price on request, mri-london.com
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s u c Fo h this month… lt a e h r u o y rt o Ideas to supp
Q10 is a vitamin-like substance which is vital for energy metabolism, yet our ability to produce it begins to decrease in our midtwenties. A deficiency can cause physical and mental fatigue, difficulty concentrating, energy slumps and mood changes, which is why it’s a good idea to look to supplement it. With evidence supporting it’s efficacy, Bio-Quinone Active Q10, has been used in over 90 clinical trials which document its safety and many benefits. It is manufactured to pharmaceutical standards, using a patented method to ensure maximum absorption. q10.co.uk
Health in a bottle Far from your average sugar-filled juice drink, Trévo contains 174 of nature’s finest nutraceutical ingredients from around the globe. A complete health system in one bottle, this remarkable formula provides you and your family with a quick, delicious and easy way to restore, renew and revive your bodies, so you can enjoy increased energy, better immunity, enhanced mental focus, vibrant good health and even weight management support. To buy Trevo (£65.53 per bottle) or for the opportunity to work with them, go to trevo.life/davidlondon
Nice and natural At that time of the month there is enough to worry about without having to question what’s in your sanitary products. Are my pads chlorine bleached? Are there pesticides in my tampons? Are these pantyliners plastic? With Natracare, all you need to know is you’re using only organic cotton and natural materials next to your skin and nothing else. Natracare is available from independent health food stores, Waitrose, Ocado, Amazon and online. natracare.com
Get flex-able If you’re regularly active, you’ll be familiar with the next day aches and pains from a tough session. To help reduce soreness try Flexable Cream, an advanced paraben free massage cream for joints and muscles, combining the beneficial and time-tested properties of glucosamine and chondroitin with natural extracts including boswellia, coconut oil, vitamin E and yerba mate leaf extract. £7.99, flexablehealth.com/yourfitness
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ARM EXERCISE DEVICE
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FIT AND FAMOUS
The Made in Chelsea star talks to us about coping with pressure, her motivation and the best thing in life ON HEALTH FOOD
My favourite snacks are protein balls – I make them with raw cacao powder, flaked almonds, almond butter and vegan vanilla protein powder and desiccated coconut.
ON REST DAY TREATS
It has to be a Sunday roast with a cheese board and pudding, as well as a glass of red wine of course.
ON HER ULTIMATE GUILTY PLEASURE Truffle macaroni cheese is my ultimate heaven.
ON HER BIGGEST BUGBEAR
Being late. I am rarely late and hate it when other people are!
ON THE BEST THING IN LIFE
Spending time with my friends, family and dog Noodle.
ON HER MOST INSPIRING FILM
My all-time favourite film is The Life of David Gale, but I'm also obsessed with documentaries and Louis Theroux.
ON HER MOTIVATION I love getting up each day and doing something that inspires me. Whether it's designing new jewellery for my brand or creating blog content, I love being creative.
“I love getting up each day and doing something that inspires me” ON HER DREAM WORKOUT PARTNER
Definitely Tash Oakley. I recently did a class with her at Core Collective – her body is insane!
ON HER MOST EMBARRASSING WORKOUT MOMENT
Getting red and sweaty during a workout with my ex in the same class.
ON HER FAVOURITE PLACE TO WORK OUT
The gym. I love going to classes and don't tend to work out in parks.
ON HER GREATEST ACHIEVEMENT
My best moment to date was launching my Rosie Fortescue Jewellery brand last year. It's something that I worked on for two years and I've just launched my second collection in Fortnum and Mason, which is a dream come true.
ON COPING WITH PRESSURE
I go to the gym and mix up my strength training workouts with fun dance-fitness classes like Zumba. I find that changing up my workout focuses and de-stresses me and I always come out with a clear mind. Rosie is a UK ambassador for Zumba. A recent study by Kingston University revealed that Zumba can help to reduce the risk of heart disease by a third. To find a class near you, head to zumba.com
YOUR FITNESS SEPT 2016 ad master_ROP 19/08/2016 16:10 Page 123
YOUR FITNESS SEPT 2016 ad master_ROP 19/08/2016 16:10 Page 124