Tuesday Tip

Tuesday Tip: Losing fitness in lockdown?

Tuesday Tip: Losing fitness in lockdown? 🏃🏼‍♀️

I know a worry for many of you (me included) is losing your fitness during lockdown. Suddenly you’re not walking to the office/school run, you’re not able to get to the gym or classes etc. Well don’t panic – it’s not as bad as you may expect.

Studies show that muscle loss doesn’t occur until about 4 weeks BUT that’s only if you stop training completely! And even then it’s minor and happens in tiny increments each week. If you continue to workout even just with bodyweight workouts then you’ll preserve muscle mass, and post lock-down you’ll be back to normal within a few weeks. If you have no equipment then focus on full body circuits, increase intensity by adjusting the tempo, and increase the volume (number of reps) e.g. a 10 bodyweight move circuit repeated 5 times etc a few times a week.

Studies show that over 12 weeks there’s only a 16% reduction in aerobic fitness overall. If you can run or cycle then this will help, but even long fast paced walks will help. If you’re into cardio classes then you’re sorted as HIIT workouts lend themselves to small spaces. You can do your own little HIIT workout, but if you struggle to motivate yourself to work hard then there’s loads of free workouts online now – see my previous posts or ask me for links). Another fab way to replicate cardio workouts is with skipping – 2 mins a few times a day as a cardio blast!

Specific fitness losses will go a degree relate to your own training/exercise history, types of exercise you do (fitness is maintained for longer if you did a variety of types of exercise e.g. not just running, and genetic and lifestyle factors. However, if you’re a regular exerciser it will take longer to lose fitness as things like increased capillary density take much longer to disappear.

So basically – don’t fret! You’re going to be fine! I hope these tips help. If you want any specific advice then please ask, anytime.

Happy Tuesday 🤗

Xx

Fitness and Exercise

A Quick Bodyweight Home Workout – Ten mins, Ten Exercises

I know, like me, many of you are missing your classes and workouts.

I just thought I’d do another quick, equipment-free workout for you guys to try. Remember it doesn’t need to be a 45 min session – any exercise is good! This little circuit takes only ten mins – if you have more time then you can always do it twice or three times, but if you don’t then just do it once! Get the family involved too 🙂

If you want to do it “with me” then there’s a video below.

Or you can use the pics below or download a pdf of the workout here: Bodyweight Circuit 2

Have fun! 🙂

xx

 

Nutrition and Calorie Tips

‘Grabbing a “healthy” snack ….. ‘

‘Grabbing a “healthy” snack ….. ‘ 🥓🍞🥜

I think if you were going to choose a “healthy” late morning snack/brunch option you’d probably assume the mixed nut bag is probably a better option than a bacon roll. And you’d assume it was healthier and certainly better for you if you’re trying to lose weight/fat.

Nuts, seeds and blackcurrants are full of nutrients – “good” fats, protein, antioxidants like Vitamin E etc. So nutritionally they are a good option, but the bag also contains a whopping 607 cals, with 28g fat and only 10g protein. The combination of fats and protein will help keep you full and satisfied but thats’s a really hefty snack that probably isn’t worth those calories.

In comparison a bacon roll would probably be perceived as a “bad” choice. In reality it has far fewer calories than the “healthy” option with only 389 cals in total. It’s also lower in fat with only 17.4g and higher in protein, 18.1 g. It still provides carbs, protein and fat so will keep you satisfied until lunch. I’m not suggesting you have one every day, but it’s certainly not terrible!.

So if you’re trying to lose weight/fat, and you really enjoy a bacon bap then go for it! As long as it’s part of a balanced diet which contains fruit and veg etc it’s fine! Don’t be swayed by the idea that nuts/seeds are inherently a “better” option – they’re not always!

🤗

Xx

Fitness and Exercise

Gym closed? Here are some of my tips for home workout options

With yesterday’s announcement about gym closures I know lots of people are worrying about how to stay fit if you can’t (or don’t want) to leave your home.

Now obviously there is always the option of doing outdoor activities like walking, running and cycling – and in fact you should definitely be doing some of these regardless. The fresh air and daylight will do you the world of good!

It’s currently unclear where we stand with outdoor exercise classes – the guidance does suggest that non-essential social gatherings are also a no no , so it’s a bit of a grey area but you have to make your own choice about that.

So in the meantime home workouts are definitely an option. Switching to home workouts isn’t easy – especially if you’re a class-based exerciser like me. You only need a little bit of space (anywhere will do) but you do need a fair bit of motivation. But it’s worth it, as establishing a workout routine could, most importantly, reduce the anxiety that this whole situation is causing, as well as keep you fit and well.

You don’t need any equipment but if you did decide you wanted to get some then a set of resistance bands (https://amzn.to/2J5MKXy) and some handweights (https://amzn.to/2xVeN9P) or adjustable dumbbells (https://amzn.to/2Uovxhf) and a skipping rope (https://amzn.to/33z73Gt) are probably the best options . Right now though everyone and their dog is buying them so you may find it hard to get hold of them. In the meantime there is loads you can do with body weight (like my post I shared last week – https://everystepfitness.com/2020/03/18/if-you-cant-get-to-thegym-here-are-two-easy-equipment-free-home-workouts-for-you-and-your-family/) or get creative and use household items for handweights (bottles of bleach/cans/ a rucksack filled with books etc).

I thought it would be a good idea to share a few options for home workouts. So here are my favourites for all types of exerciser.

If you are looking for workouts you can watch and follow then there are TONNES of free workouts out there.

⁃ Do a YouTube search for whatever type of workout you fancy and it will bring up 1000’s of options – all free! HIIT, yoga, Pilates, dance, strength training etc – everything is there!

⁃ If that’s all a bit bewildering then two great resources are fitness blender (https://www.fitnessblender.com) and the bodycoach (The Body Coach TV – YouTube ) . Both of these offer hundreds of completely free workouts. Fitness blender has a range of cardio, strength and stretch based workouts. The Body Coach is mostly hiit based stuff but he’s also doing some kids based sessions too at the moment.

⁃ If you want something a bit more polished and app based then it’s worth checking out Peloton (https://www.onepeloton.co.uk). They are doing a 90 day free trial at the moment! The app (which doesn’t require you to buy their bike etc) has loads of easy-to-follow and high-quality videos, including yoga, strength, meditation, cardio and bootcamp classes. There are also audio-only classes for outdoor runs, if that’s still an option for you. 

⁃ If you’re already missing your Les Mills classes then definitely check out Les Mills On Demand (https://www.lesmills.com/uk/ondemand/). There are a variety of all your favourite classes – attack, bodystep, pump etc and you can do them all on the comfort of your home! You don’t need to buy specific les mills equipment – any generic weights will do for example. They have some free workouts and they’re also doing a 14 day free trial.

If you’re considering other options then you could think about some personal training. Most of us are still seeing our PT clients (taking extra care with cleaning and maintaining social distancing) and many of us offer online Pt options too.

If that’s all a bit much and you just want some simple workouts to do without the need for an app or a laptop screen in front of you then just drop me a line. I’m happy to put together some home workouts for people, just like I do for my Pt clients. Just ask – anytime and I’d be glad to help out (free).

Hopefully you can find something you will enjoy doing while we wait for those gyms to reopen and we get to see each other again!

Happy working out – wherever you do it!

Xxx

Tuesday Tip

Tuesday Tip : Beat The Afternoon Slump

Tuesday Tip : Beat The Afternoon Slump 😴

The mid afternoon energy slump – usually 3-4pm is common to all of us! It can have you reaching for the sugar or caffeine to stay alert but instead try these tips to help beat that slump!

#1 Start right

Not starting the day right can have big impacts later. If you don’t have breakfast you’re far more likely to feel sleepy later in the day. Try a brekkie that combines protein and carbs – eggs on toast, porridge with nuts/fruit. If you’re in a rush take it with you – peanut butter bagel, yogurt pot etc.

# 2 Watch the carbs and fat

Now I’m definitely not saying to cut carbs totally for lunch – you need them for energy. Too few and you’ll find you’re running low by 3pm. But on the flip side too many carbs and you’ll feel sluggish all afternoon. Go for a fist sized portion of carbs with lunch. Also reduce the fat – high fat meals are harder to digest so leave you feeling sluggish. So have a sandwich by all means, or a pasta salad, but load up on the veggies and go easy on the bread/pasta and cheese etc.

# 3 Have a break

Studies have found that taking regular 5-15 min breaks leads to increased productivity at work, and can help combat the afternoon slump. Try to get up and walk around at least once every hour throughout the day. Then, during your break, do a few stretches and take a few deep breaths to invigorate and refresh your mind and your body.

# 4 Drink more

The afternoon slump can also be a result of dehydration. So grab a cold glass of water when you start to feel sleepy. You could add a little lime/cucumber/lemon to your water to add to the flavour. Or try soaking some bits of pineapple in your water for a delicious pineapple-infused burst of energy!

#5 Use your head

It sounds counter intuitive as it’s the last thing you feel like doing but using your brain helps to combat that slump. Try a fun, quick task like crosswords/puzzles etc to give those brain cells a blast. Engaging your brain this way will rouse your concentration levels and refocus you.

Happy Tuesday 🤗

Xx

Tuesday Tip

Tuesday Tip: Post-workout Munchies

Tuesday Tip: Post-workout Munchies 🥤🥪

Feeling very hungry after your workout? Regular workouts boost your metabolism and often increase your hunger. Those dreaded post-workout munchies can make you reach for extra snacks and eat more than you want to which could derail your fitness goals.

# 1 Reconsider your burn

Did you really burn as much as you’re about to eat? Studies have shown that we usually underestimate the calories consumed through food and overestimate the number of calories burned by exercise. As I’ve said in previous posts those fitness machines almost always over estimate and even fitness trackers aren’t as accurate as we’re led to believe. So be realistic when it comes to choosing post-workout foods. Go for something with protein, carbs and fat – and if it’s not a main meal then aim for only about 150-200 cals. A glass of milk (dairy or soya) or chocolate milk is an excellent post workout refuel.

# 2 Are you really hungry?

Ask yourself are you really hungry? Unless it’s a definite yes don’t reach for that protein shake or snack (and remember as I said last week – protein shakes aren’t really necessary for most of us anyway!)

Drink a big glass of water first and then decide. Try not to just get in to the habit of eating after workouts for the sake of it.

#3 Eat regular meals

If you’re starving after your workouts then maybe you haven’t eaten enough earlier in the day. Studies have shown regular meals with a good balance of proteins, carbs and fats results in less desire to eat extra snacks post workout and curb that hunger.

# 4 Schedule your workouts

If you always feel hungry after working out, then simply make sure to schedule exercise before one of your main meals.

That way you won’t need to eat any extra snacks, and thus additional calories, between meals.

# 5 Don’t try to earn calories to eat later

Try not to workout simply for the reward of eating later. Again something I’ve talked about before – try not to reward yourself with food. Exercise itself should be the reward so find something you enjoy – cycling, running, classes, dancing etc and then enjoy the endorphins!

Happy Tuesday 🤗

Xx

Tuesday Tip

Tuesday Tip: Carbs are ok

Tuesday Tip: Carbs are ok 🥖🍞🥔

Carbs are the devil right? We all know someone that cut carbs and lost a stone in 4 weeks or whatever… so obviously carbs are bad?

There is so much conflicting, scientific sounding rhetoric out there blasting carbs – saying you shouldn’t eat them, or if you do eat them you should only eat them at certain times, or that cutting them will result in massive weight loss (well yeah if you cut any major food group out of your diet you’ll lose weight – you’re eating less!).

This is not actually true. The common argument is that carbs cause insulin to be released and to spike and therefore it’s bad because that insulin will somehow cause fat to be stored ….well sorry but all meals do this and in fact some proteins cause a greater response than carbs! In addition those insulin level changes have no direct impact on weight gain or weight loss. You have to be eating more than you’re using to store fat.

Carbs are the body’s preferred fuel source – breaking them down to glucose, but if there are no carbs around the body simply breaks protein to glucose instead. This applies at any time – not just when you’re exercising- because we need glucose to function – both physically and mentally.

Does that mean that there is no point in eating more carbs at certain times and fewer at others? No – you can definitely choose to have more carbs when your body may need extra fuel e.g. when working out, or in the morning when you’ve not eaten all night. But it’s not black and white and you certainly don’t need to ONLY eat carbs at these times and you definitely shouldn’t be avoiding carbs altogether.

How many carbs you eat doesn’t determine your weight loss – it’s total number of calories eaten and calories expended that matter. Carbs are just one part of the equation that you can play around with to help you meet those goals. There’s no need to obsess over carbs – yes small tweaks may help and you MAY find it easier to only eat carbs in the morning, or whenever, but if you like carbs eat them – just manage your portion size.

Happy Tuesday 🤗xx