January Challenge on review…..
Done. Kaput. Finito! Horah!
An intense exercise regime, healthy eating plan and keeping a food diary. NO SUGAR and NO ALCOHOL… Was it worth it?
YES! it was so worth it. There were times when I reeally craved sweets or a glass of vino (especially in the first two weeks) but those dropped considerably after that. I think it’s just breaking habits and the golden 2 week mark.
Training was awesome! I always keep up my consistency but it was really good to add some structure to it again. Made me work harder and subsequently become sorer! (yuss the magic is working )
I noticed that my body felt tighter and I was able to target the muscles that I wanted to more effectiveley. Also got a big kick out of alot of stretching! oooo sooooo gooooooood!
I did become a social recluse which got abit old towards the end. But in hindsight was really nice to give it a break and spend some time on me Seriously how often do we do this? never!
Well done to everyone who rocked it. Heres to a fabulous february! Im going to continue my good training and eating habits.
Looking forward to hearing how everyone else went! Keep ya posted xx
Why is it when the weekend hits all my body wants to do is catch Z’s?
I think by polishing off all my training during the week it was well and truly ready for rest come Saturday.
Last night slept like a dream and was ready to rock n shock the system come the first day of the week.
I had to test out a new workout for one of my lovelies before handing it over….
PLYOMETRICS (combination of speed+power) KILL. My legs had abandoned me by the end of this workout to say the least. I haven’t trained like this in a while and I have a feeling my butt will be letting me know all about it tomorrow. One piping hot workout served
So it wasn’t as extremo as these guys but the moves they can pull in this vid will be due to some serious plyo training! Amazing!!
All exercise ticked and locked down for the week. Im taking a rest day sleeeep and sharing this super yum recipe I tried out from Mr Jamie Oliver!
I substituted all the potato for other yummies like pumpkin, beetroot, red onion and carrot.
The lemon inside the chicken makes everything soooo good.
Super easy. Perfect Sunday (or Saturday) roast xo
Roast chicken remains one of our favourite dishes at home. I recently discovered a way to make the chicken taste even better, by putting a lemon in with my potatoes when I was parboiling them. It smelt fantastic and flavoured the potatoes. Then when I was draining them I decided to stab the lemon, which hissed out juice and steam, and quickly jammed it inside the chicken! The benefits of the hot steaming lemon going into the chicken are very obvious as the meat tastes amazing, and the chicken cooks slightly quicker because of it.
Rub the chicken inside and out with a generous amount of salt and freshly ground black pepper. Do this in the morning if possible, then cover the chicken and leave in the fridge until you’re ready to start cooking it for lunch or dinner. By doing this, you’ll make the meat really tasty when cooked. Preheat your oven to 190ºC/375ºF/gas 5. Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil. Cut the potatoes into golf-ball-sized pieces, put them into the water with the whole lemon and the garlic cloves, and cook for 12 minutes. Drain and allow to steam dry for 1 minute (this will give you crispier potatoes), then remove the lemon and garlic. Toss the potatoes in the pan while still hot so their outsides get chuffed up and fluffy – this will make them lovely and crispy when they roast.
While the lemon is still hot, carefully stab it about 10 times. Take the chicken out of the fridge, pat it with kitchen paper and rub it all over with olive oil. Push the garlic cloves, the whole lemon and the thyme into the cavity, then put the chicken into a roasting tray and cook in the preheated oven for around 45 minutes. Remove the chicken to a plate. Some lovely fat should have cooked out of it into the roasting tray, so toss the potatoes into this with the rosemary leaves. Shake the tray around, then make a gap in the centre of the potatoes and put the chicken back in. If using the bacon, lay the rashers over the chicken breast and cook for a further 45 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked and the potatoes are nice and golden. (You can tell the chicken is cooked when the thigh meat pulls easily away from the bone and the juices run clear.)
I remove the lemon and garlic from inside the chicken, squeeze all the garlic flesh out of the skin, mush it up and smear it all over the chicken, discard the lemon and rosemary and carve the chicken at the table. Heaven!
• 1 x 2kg/4½lb free-range organic chicken
• sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
• 2kg/4½lb potatoes, peeled
• 1 large, preferably unwaxed, lemon
• 1 whole bulb of garlic, broken into cloves
• a handful of fresh thyme
• olive oil
• a handful of fresh rosemary sprigs, leaves picked
In the spirit of the Dubai Marathon held today, Ive been taking my cardio outdoors. If your used to treadmill work, notice how different it feels to run on the pavement. Completely different movement!
Running on a crisp winters morning is tops! Love love love it
Waking up the bod with fresh air in your lungs, feeling new blood coursing through your veins and giving you positive energy for the rest of the day. Its one of the best treats you will give yourself today.
Go on, get into it!
Day 22 4.45am bing! awake. No reasonable explanation as to why, in fact its still dark outside. But Im awake and ready to hit it.
To the gym for a super early morn sesh!
Day 23 5.30am bing! awake… whats going on here! and it’s funny too because this week I have been approached several times about what is the best time of day to workout?
Here is a few reasons why early morning is a great time to get amongst.
Best Morning benefits!
- Best time for fat burn! Your levels of muscle and liver glycogen (also called stored carbohydrates) are normally very low when you wake up first thing in the morning. With depleted glycogen and lower blood sugar, you’ll give your body the perfect environment to burn fat instead of carbohydrates! horah!
- Studies has proven that training first thing in the morning means your more likely to stick with your exercise regime. And we all know that consistency is the key to getting results!
- By revving up the engine first thing you raise your metabolism for the day (bonus!) and your energy is increased and brain clarity/function.
- You know that ‘high’ feeling you get after a workout? Endorphins release and improve your mood and outlook guaranteeing you to bring those same positive vibes in for the rest of the day
- Time out to set up your day
- Less likely to make poor food choices later on
- Exercising late at night may hamper your chance of getting an early mark to bed. Because training will give you energy, this may make you restless before bed time. Aim to leave a window of 3 hours before hitting the sack.
At the end of the day the fact you are exercising at all is fantastic. Whether it be day or night. Fit it in when are where you can.
If your want to give mornings a go and your not usually a morning person, give yourself time to adjust. It may come as a little bit of a shock to the bod. It will adjust in time and you’ll be ready to smash into your day in no time
Down to the last week! Hang in there!
Keep your goals in FULL VIEW. By having a picture, mantra or training date you need your exercise to compliment readily available and viewable, you are much more likely to stick with your training regime.
Being a visual creature, I highly suggest finding a training muse and having a few photos of them on your phone, in your diary (just somewhere you look at regularly)
May end up being the difference whether you finish that last sprint or round!
This is mine. Christina Halkiopoulos
Body is WIPED. I feel like i could lie down for 2 days and recover. But alas I pulled it together to complete week 3 and everything that goes with it Yes! end of week 3!! woohoo!
The reward = a nice looooong steam room date. So so good
A note on recovery time and treating yourself for all your hard work.
- It is just as important to make time to recover from your workouts as it is to actually do them!
- Your body needs a 48 hour rest window from any hard strength training workout to mend fully and come back even stronger! If you workout muscles that are still sore and in need of repair, chances are your efforts will not be as good had you waited that extra day. And you want to put in 100% max effort each time.
- Instead its a great chance to do some light cardio and stretch, stretch, stretch! This will actually help speeed up your recovery by promoting new fresh oxygenated blood to your muscles.
- As you become stronger and are able to lift heavier weights your body needs longer to recover. So effectively you can workout LESS to get your desired results! But don’t go and start categorizing yourself in this box yet ( i can hear all the excuses now) It takes awhile to get to this level!
- Treat yourself to little pampering. Whether it be a massage to workout all those knotty muscles, a sleep in, sauna, or it may even be a dinner date with a friend and your cheat meal.
Can I train a different muscle group on consecutive days?
- Yes technically you can. Although there are also hormonal and chemical changes happening all around your body in this process that will benefit much more from total rest. If your just starting to train I would advice taking the rest day. if your quite advanced in your training and know how quickly your body adapts then use that as a guide too.
Sleep, eat well, drink water
- You’ve heard it all before and it sounds terribly familiar. Well good! SLEEP your full quota of 8 hours in one hit ( try sleep right through as opposed to breaking it up) Your body does most of its restoration during this time.
- EAT HEALTHY and nutritious foods! No brainer really. If your stuck with this (and don’t be ashamed if your are) feel free to contact me for suggestions .
- DRINK PLENTY OF WATER 1ltr per 25kgs of body weight to be exact. Oh and another liter if your working out to replace fluid and electrolytes ( the natural salts your body needs)
Today was all about GREAT vibes. Everyone I interacted with was so positive and beautiful and it kept right through to the end.
Brilliant what setting up your day can actually achieve! Just a few quiet moments in the morning to yourself before leaping into captain productive mode to observe your thoughts and map out what vibe you want to give and receive.
It’s so true. You are the creator of your reality via atuning your thoughts.
Since you’re in such a good mood, here’s a workout that’ll really test your boundaries. I call it the Safa Park Suicide.
Now for those of you who don’t know Safa park yet. It’s a great big park in the middle of Dubai with lots of great grassy spots and watering holes inside. Loads of people train here. There is also a running track around the circumference that stretches 3.4km. This is where the workouts takes place.
1. Starting at Gate 2 (main entrance) - First 1.5kms
Every 100m perform in rotation one of the following exercises
- Squat jumps
- Split squat jumps
- Mountain climbers
- Reverse lunge with a kick
You can either run backwards, forwards or side step to the next 100m mark until the 1.5kms is complete. Keep heart rate and intensity high!
2. Next side (along Sheik Zayed road) is the dirty 500m burpee leg.
- Perform one burpee more than the previous station every 50m e.g station 1 = 1 burpee, station 2=2 etc. It goes up to 10 by the end.
- Must run between stations
- FULL BURPEES ARE A MUST!
3. The next 500m to Gate 1
- Alternating running backwards and forwards between the 50m marks.
- Make sure to watch for runners when gliding backwards!
4. Sprinters heaven 1km
- Alternate every 50m between sprinting and I’m talking GUNNING it and light jogging aaaall the way down to Al Wasl Road. This will really seal the deal and test your mind power as well as every last little piece of your body.
5. The last 400m to home…
- Use this lat 400m to get your heart rate down slowly. Start by coming out of your sprint to a jog/light jog/walk and finally finish off with some stretches and a large drink of H2O
It’s the craziness you love to hate
Seems as though everyone’s fitness tests have been due this past week and Im brimming with pride at the amazing successes my guys have been achieving. WELL DONE you deserve it for all your hard work! now keep going stronger and striving to be the best you can xxx Love me
FREE Yoga tonight at 7pm Zabeel Park Gate 3. Bring a mat and a jumper n lets get bendy wendy!
Courtesy of FOY – Friends of Yoga. Cheers!
The end of week 2! wow has that flown or what.
Sugar cravings are almost at a zero! Still have the occasional thought to sway to the chocolate side. But in all fairness when confronted with the option having a picture of my training muse on hand does a sweet sweet job of pulling me back into line. Highly recommend having a few in the phone.
Alcohol consumption has been zilch (besides my cheat item in Paris) ..but then again I havn’t had any nights out with the girls either and been quite socially reclusive…. hmmmm
Its funny how being social and drinking go hand in hand. Can we go out for a night or catchup with friends without the inclination to drink? I think thats where the real challenge lies as its such a social lubricant and almost expected to go hand in hand. If you were to tell someone ‘ no sorry I’m not drinking at the moment’ your guaranteed for it to protested. At least one of your friends will give you all the reasons under the sun, moon and stars as to why you should be drinking and be merry. Are they subconsciously envious that you have such strong will power or actually no idea about how health, fitness and losing weight are sabotaged by excessive drinking. Plus you will be the one waking up the next day feeling AMAZING, energetic and ready to rock into your gym sesh. Oh by the way did I mention how much sugar and calories are involved in alcohol? a whole weeks worth of training can fly out the window with one night out on the lash. Do you really want to throw away all your hard work so easily? Its a no brainer really isn’t it?
Now by no means will I be a saint in this department but I know how to enjoy it in moderation, have fun, still keep super fit and have a healthy bod. And thats the real key! :)
Would love to hear your views on this topic and how you overcome the urge to splurge and social peer pressures whatever your vices may be.
Peace, love and cheers to over coming vices!