Is this Kenya’s fittest 45-year-old mom?

When I checked out her Instagram, my jaw dropped, and even my deskie gasped out loud.

Nothing inspires to hit the gym more than to look at the rock hard body of this mother of two.

Anne Marie Burugu is a super fit mom motivating her fans to reconsider their food choices.

How does Anne Marie look fierce and fit? Besides the gym, she is an ardent golfer, a surfer (google if you don’t have any idea what I’m talking about)  and absolutely adores sky diving, she also jogs and swims alot.

She kind of reminds me of actress Jada Pinketts 64-year-old mom, whose abs of steel will make you hide your one pack in shame.

My intention is to push myself on the days that I can, and on the days that my body is exhausted and worn out and I cannot imagine going on a run or lifting a weight, I will actively rest by doing lighter workouts like dancing, walking or yoga/Pilates… anything that will still keep me active and moving.

This week we have also been treated to age defying photos of legendary singer Missy Elliot, who disclosed she gave up bread and soda four months ago, and has shed massive amounts of weight.

Everyone’s talking about this photo of Missy Elliot aging backwards

Anne makes it look so easy, adding more about her workout regimen;

But if you you’re up for it, I’m challenging you guys to make your own commitments to get moving everyday, and to hold yourself (or get others to hold you) accountable too! It’s just 30min a day of whatever physical activity is fun for you, because more fun means you’ll stick with it longer. You’ve got nothing to lose (except maybe a few kilos!) and everything to gain!! 

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Also read more here

 

Gwyneth Paltrow under fire for promoting ‘extremely damaging’ advice on how to lose weight

Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop has been heavily criticised for its bizarre and unfounded health and wellness advice.

Now the brand has come under fire for publishing a Q&A article with celebrity personal trainer Tracy Anderson, entitled ‘how to lose weight fast’, in which she shares her meal plan to lose 14lbs in four weeks.

A Harley Street nutritionist has branded the story ‘extremely damaging’ because she said it has the potential to harm the mental and physical health of readers.

Medical experts recommend a slow weight loss of around 1lb and 2lb a week – and say quick diet fads risk malnutrition, gallstones, exhaustion and can lead to eating disorders.

The exercise guru and pal of Gwyneth, who helped her lose her ‘baby weight’ after her second child, also recommends cutting out gluten and going ‘very low carb’.

But studies have suggested gluten-free products are laden with sugar and fat and have scant protein, while high-protein, low carb diets are feared to harm your heart.

A host of other celebrities swear by the Tracy Anderson Method, including Jennifer Lopez, Madonna, Lena Dunham and Kim Kardashian.

But food expert Rhiannon Lambert has hit out at Ms Anderson advocating quick weight loss results.

‘I am in complete shock that this article has been published as this has the potential to harm a lot of relationships with food,’ she told The Independent.

‘Firstly it is important to note that fast “weight loss” is often not body fat but the number on the scales shifting, often from water weight, which is why I always advocate a healthy balanced approach over time to losing actually body fat as weight.’

Gwyneth Paltrow3NHS Choices recommend the safe weekly rate of weight loss is between 0.5kg and 1kg (between around 1lb and 2lb a week).

It states: ‘Lose weight faster than this and you’re at risk of health problems that include malnutrition and gallstones, as well as feeling tired and unwell.

‘Fad diets associated with very rapid weight loss, which involve simply changing your diet for a few weeks, are also unlikely to lead you to a healthy weight in the long term.’

The controversial diet plan 

In the Goop article, Ms Anderson said: ‘If you have weight to lose, you can effectively do a fourteen-pound weight loss in four weeks.

‘This requires focus and physical, mental, and emotional willpower. You will experience short-term stress (particularly during your cycle if you’re a woman) – but this can end up being less stressful than living with the stress of excess weight.

TRACY ANDERSON’S 14-DAY PLAN TO LOSE 14 POUNDS

DIET

For breakfast, choose one of the following:

  • 10 ounces of chilled Yogi peach detox tea with two scoops of vanilla ResTArt protein powder
  • 2 poached eggs with a sprinkle of rosemary sea salt; side of sautéed chopped kale and cherry tomatoes in rice wine vinegar
  • 1 TA organic Ultimate CLEAR bar
  • 10 ounces chilled Yogi cinnamon vanilla tea with 2 scoops of vanilla ResTArt protein powder
  • 1 cup of blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries

For lunch, options included:

  • Salad: chopped romaine, spinach, scallions, raw broccoli tops (shave the top off), cucumbers, yellow onion, sauerkraut (I like Garlic Dill Pickle from Farmhouse Culture), rice wine vinegar; plus 1 snack pack of Eden’s organic tamari almonds
  • Grilled chicken: Have a grilled chicken breast with a side salad of chopped organic iceberg and butter lettuce, chopped scallions and cucumbers, with rice wine vinegar and lemon.
  • Bone broth mix: Put bone broth in a pot to simmer (I do two cartons of lemongrass chicken bone broth from Pacific). Chop 1 cooked chicken breast and add to the broth along with scallions, celery, carrot. Once vegetables are cooked, add chopped curly kale to only slightly soften.alt
  • Fish: Get 1 can of tuna in water and add mustard and capers. Eat on sliced cucumber.

Ms Anderson suggests having bone broth mix for lunch which is said to be nutrient-dense (stock image)

For dinner

Any of the following fish (wild-caught), or an organic chicken breast simply grilled or steamed:

  • Tilapia
  • Rainbow trout
  • Salmon
  • Arctic char
  • Wild Chilean sea bass
  • Alaskan cod
  • Black sea bass
  • Sole

With any of the following vegetables, steamed or sautéed:

  • Broccolini
  • Cherry tomatoes and onions
  • Zucchini and onions
  • Sweet peas with rosemary and pearl onions
  • Spinach with lemon and capers
  • Collard greens (try sautéing in rice wine vinegar)

Snack

Aim for a half bar of Alter Eco’s Dark Velvet chocolate. Full bar is okay, too. But if you can do without the chocolate bar some days, that’s great.

Other suggested guidelines

  • Try to eat all/as much organic as possible
  • Drink plenty of water
  • Opt for zero-calorie, fresh-brewed tea (as opposed to be pre-made); can have flavor and/or be caffeinated, but no additives
  • You can add one Nuun tablet to water during exercise if you’re looking for a boost
  • Don’t eat eggs twice in a day
  • May have 1 to 2 glasses of wine per day.

Exercise

Movement is key; you really want to get a solid sweat in for one hour, every day. If you’re in for TA [Tracy Anderson Method], but not able to come to the studio, check out the streaming options. You could stream a master class each day, or even do the beginners version twice a day.

 Gwyneth Paltrow

But Ms Lambert stresses that ‘quick fixes never last’.

She said: ‘They are just that: quick and not sustainable. In fact, they may end up affecting how you manage your weight long term.’

Experts say the most effective way to lose weight and keep it off is to lose it gradually.

Ms Lambert also said one of Ms Anderson’s recommended breakfast options contained  ‘detox tea’ and her own protein powder which she says contains cane sugar and sunflower oil when ‘there are much better options out there’.

Concerns over gluten free and low carb advice

Ms Anderson also recommends cutting out gluten from your diet and going ‘very low carb.’

But according to Ms Lambert, the claim that doing these two things will lead to weight loss is ‘utterly scientifically incorrect’.

The demand for gluten-free has exploded in recent years, but experts have warned about the dangers of excluding nutrients and argued such products often contain  more fat and sugar to help create the texture that is lost when gluten is excluded.

Low carb diets have raised alarm among experts because they tend to be high in saturated fat, potentially raising cholesterol and your chance of heart disease.

Ms Lambert points out that many studies have shown that people tend to lose weight on any diet that restricts a whole food group because overall calories are lower – but it’s not healthy.

She says that it is not sensible to eliminate whole food groups because you may end up deficient in micronutrients as well as risking messing up your guy bacteria.

Ms Anderson also claims in the piece that you can ‘jump-start’ weight loss by working out every single day.

But Ms Lambert, whose book Re-Nourish is published on 28 December, argues that working out every day can actually hinder your results as you don’t give your muscles time to recover.

‘In some cases the stress on the body alone may delay and hinder any desired weight loss,’ she said.

Since its launch in 2008, Goop has urged we try sex dust, vaginal steaming, vaginal jade eggs, cupping, earthing (walking barefoot) and consulting shamans.

The site’s controversial claims have now earned the company the first ever ‘Rusty Razor’ award as the ‘best’ promoter of the ‘worst pseudoscience of the year’.

The accolade was issued by The Skeptic, which describes itself as the UK’s only magazine taking a scientific look at pseudoscience and the paranormal.

Work Out Tips: Don’t Run And Lift Weights On The Same Day If You Want a BEACH BODY, Warn Sports Scientists

Don’t combine running and strength training on the same day if you want a beach body, experts warn.

Sports scientists have found that concurrent training – as combining resistance training with cardio exercises is called – does bring the best results.

But only if you allow a rest period of 24 hours in between for a full recovery.

Fatigue from weight training can last several days and impair your endurance during a cardio session, according to a researchers from James Cook University in Queensland, Australia.

‘The consensus is that concurrent training is beneficial for endurance development,’ said researcher Dr Kenji Doma.

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‘But we found that if appropriate recovery is not accounted for between each training mode, then it may impair endurance development.’

Strength training – also called resistance or weight training, which includes moves like dead lifts, squats, pull ups, push ups, and lunges – is known to reduce body fat, increase lean muscle mass and help the body burn calories more efficiently.

It can also increase bone density and reduce the risk of osteoporosis.

Cardio or aerobic exercise, such as walking, bicycling or swimming, can burn calories and decreases your blood pressure and boost your heart health.

Healthy adults should aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity a week.

Key findings

Dr Doma and his team examined people partaking in concurrent training on the same or separate days.

He said they found studies showed reduced performance by athletes, including runners and cyclists, even several days after a single resistance training session.

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The physiological stress caused by a typical resistance training session of 40 to 60 minutes can continue for several days post-exercise.

But athletes made a full recovery with a 24 hour break from exercise following a typical endurance training bout.

‘We want to increase the awareness of resistance training-induced fatigue in the hope of encouraging coaches to think about aspects such as the order of the training, the recovery period, training intensity, etc,’ said Dr Doma.

‘We’re trying to limit the carry-over effects of fatigue from resistance to endurance training sessions.’

Dr Doma stressed he was not saying that concurrent training should be discontinued.

‘There are great benefits to it, but there can be some hidden dangers too. What we want to see is fatigue from resistance sessions minimised so there can be even more benefits gained.’

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Daily Mail

Exercise reduces lower back pain by 16% – study

Being highly active reduces the risk of chronic lower back pain by 16 per cent, new research reveals.

Regular moderate activity lowers the risk by 14 per cent, a study review found.

Yet, exercise has no impact on short-term back pain or that which causes hospitalisation or disability, the research adds.

Dr Joel Press, physiatrist-in-chief at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York, who was not involved in the study, said: ‘We were meant to move. We were not meant to be stagnant in any way.

‘Generally lower impact, walking type things are probably the starting point. Swimming is another low impact activity that puts less load on your back’.

 

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How the study was carried out  

Researchers from the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health in Helsinki analysed data from 36 studies that included 158,475 people.

The studies’ participants did not have back pain at the start of the investigations.

Physical activity was defined as sport and intentional exercise, as well as walking and climbing stairs.

The participants were considered active if they engaged in physical activity at least twice a week for a minimum of 60 minutes.

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Key findings 

Results revealed that being highly active reduces the risk of chronic lower back pain by 16 per cent compared to those who do not regularly exercise.

Moderate activity reduces the risk by 14 per cent.

Yet, exercise does not have an impact on short-term back pain or that which causes hospitalisation or disability.

The findings were published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine.

Read more: dailymail.

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Are You Suffering From BACK PAIN? Here’s The Best Remedy Instead Of Reaching For a Paracetamol

Being highly active reduces the risk of chronic lower back pain by 16 per cent, new research reveals.

Regular moderate activity lowers the risk by 14 percent, a study review found.

Yet, exercise has no impact on short-term back pain or that which causes hospitalisation or disability, the research adds.

Dr Joel Press, physiatrist-in-chief at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York, who was not involved in the study, said: ‘We were meant to move. We were not meant to be stagnant in any way.

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‘Generally lower impact, walking type things are probably the starting point. Swimming is another low impact activity that puts less load on your back’.

  • Key findings 

Results revealed that being highly active reduces the risk of chronic lower back pain by 16 per cent compared to those who do not regularly exercise.

Moderate activity reduces the risk by 14 per cent.

Yet, exercise does not have an impact on short-term back pain or that which causes hospitalisation or disability.

The findings were published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine.

  • What the experts say 

Dr Press said: ‘We were meant to move. We were not meant to be stagnant in any way, so I think this study does confirm that.

‘Generally lower impact, walking type things are probably the starting point.

‘Swimming is another low impact activity that puts less load on your back.

people-running

‘If somebody does an exercise and they’re a little sore right afterward, but by later that day they feel fine, and the next day they’re no worse, they feel fine, that’s a green light – go ahead, you’re doing okay.’

Dr Press advises back pain sufferers avoid sports that involve a lot of twisting and turning, such as golf and tennis.

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REVEALED! The Seven Simple Things Happy People Do EVERY Day And Why You Should Squeeze Them In Your Routine

Many spend their lives trying to work out the secret to happiness.

And while the answer might remain forever a mystery, one expert believes he has come at least a little bit closer to working it out.

Dr Randall Bell, an economist, and sociologist from California, discovered happy people practice certain habits that contribute to their overall well-being.

He said: ‘When it comes to happiness, your habits matter. While studies have proven that a significant portion of happiness is linked to genetics, a whopping 40 per cent comes directly from the daily rituals that you choose to engage in.

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‘So why not do what happy people do? It certainly can’t hurt.’

Here, Dr. Randall tells FEMAIL about eight simple habits happy people incorporate into every day – and explains why you should adopt them into your own routine.

1. EAT DINNER AS A FAMILY
Sitting down to eat as a family can seem almost impossible in busy households but Dr Bell insists it is worth making the effort.

2. EXERCISE
It will come as no surprise to learn that the happiest people make time for daily exercise, even if it is just a simple 20-minute walk.

3. DANCE
Dancing carries the endorphin rush of exercise with the added bonus of fostering our interpersonal relationships.

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4. AVOID ROAD RAGE
Traffic jams and poor driving can send blood pressure rising but staying calm behind the wheel is an easy way to feel happier.

5. DON’T GOSSIP
It can be tempting to whisper about your colleague’s new relationship or share your friend’s secret – but toning down the gossip could leave you feeling happier.

6. ORGANISE YOUR DESK
In a fast-paced work environment, it can be easy for your desk to become cluttered and messy but it pays to keep it neat, according to Dr Bell.

7. WAVE TO YOUR NEIGHBOURS
People who walk past their neighbors without giving them a friendly wave are much more likely to be unhappy, Dr Bell believes.

5 Simple Pregnancy Exercises for Every Trimester

I never exercised during my pregnancy, and after reading an article by Ralph Roberts a fitness expert, I almost wish I had had this information at the time.

He dwells on the importance of a workout and how it makes it easy to strengthen your whole body, by following a few simple regimen in the comfort of your home.

First Trimester
The first trimester marks a time when the body is getting adjusted to your new body. Nausea and fatigue are common. Take it easy to start with and build only when you feel like it.

  • Start or maintain your aerobic fitness. Walking and swimming are two aerobic exercises that are generally safe in any trimester of pregnancy. High-impact aerobics, like running or jumping, can increase the risk of miscarriage, especially during the first trimester.
  • Work on your pelvic floor. The pelvic floor runs from the pubic bone to the base of the spine. This floor helps control the bladder and keeps the uterus in its proper location during pregnancy. Simple Kegel exercises can strengthen this floor.
  • Incorporate strength training into your routine. You will be using a lot of muscles during labor and delivery. Strength training is good preparation for it. But take it easy!
Second Trimester
The second trimester is often the most enjoyable for women as they are past most of the nausea and the fatigue has begun to fade.

  • Continue your aerobic training. Walking remains an excellent exercise during the second trimester. It helps you stay fit and healthy. Water exercises geared toward pregnant women are also great alternatives.
  • Add stretching to your workout, if you haven’t already. A gentle yoga workout designed for pregnant women will help you maintain your flexibility, even as your body begins to make dramatic changes.
  • Keep up with strength training. Make any adjustments recommended by your doctor or trainer.

Third Trimester
The most growth is going to occur during the third trimester. Major changes in the body mean major changes to your workout routine.

  • Start breaking your aerobic exercise into shorter intervals. Instead of taking a 30-minute walk, try two 15-minute walks instead.
  • Continue stretching and strength exercise. This is the time when an experienced personal trainer can help. He or she can show you exercises specially geared for labor and delivery preparation.

 

 

10 reasons why you really should be stretching

1. END THE PAIN

Muscles are made up of myocytes, cells commonly known as muscle fibres. When we stretch a muscle, the fibre is pulled out to its full length, which helps realign any disorganised fibres by straightening them out. This realignment is what helps to rehabilitate scarred tissue, so reducing muscle pain.

2. IT’S GOOD FOR JOINTS

Stretching lengthens the muscles, improving flexibility and range of motion in the joints.

3. TO HELP THE HEART

Extending muscles can be as good for heart health as physical exercise, according to scientists. A 2014 Dutch-American study found that yoga poses – asanas – may be as useful as biking or walking in reducing the risk of cardiovascular diseases.

4. YOU GET HAPPY

Stretching releases dopamine, a brain chemical that affects emotional response and increases feelings of happiness. Just taking moments to stop and stretch out the shoulders helps to relax body and mind.

5. PROTECTION FROM INJURY

Studies into tendon injuries indicate that regular stretching – both static, when you hold a position, and dynamic, such as a torso twist – can prevent injury.

6. FIX YOUR HUNCH

The reason that many people who spend a large part of the day working in front of computers get a ‘hunched’ posture is often not because of weak back and shoulders, but due to tight chest muscles. One of the best ways to reduce upper-back pain is to stretch the pectoral muscles – the pecs.

7. DIABETES BUSTER

Stretching has been found to lower blood sugar levels, a key factor in managing diabetes. A 2011 Hawaiian study of people either at risk or already diagnosed with type 2 diabetes found that 20 minutes of stretching lowered glucose levels in the blood by 28ml per decilitre. Researchers believe stretching opens blood vessels in muscles and joints, enabling glucose to be better absorbed by cells.

8. LOWER CHOLESTEROL

Prolonged stretching in combination with healthy eating has been found to reduce cholesterol. An Indian study of adults with coronary atherosclerotic disease – hardening of the arteries – found that after a year of yoga stretches and diet, the condition was reversed by 20 per cent and the cholesterol levels of the participants improved.

9. IT KILLS PAIN

Stretching the jaw muscles can ease tension headaches, a type of pain often brought on by tightening the neck and facial muscles during stress or feelings of fatigue.

10. YOU’LL BE STRONGER

A study carried out in 2012 found that after ten weeks of stretching one calf, the strength of that calf increased by an amazing 29 per cent.

Having Good Friends Is Just As Important As Exercising: Study

According to a new study by the University of North Carolina, having good friends is just as beneficial to your health and lifespan as exercise.

The study found that having a solid social group resulted in better health in early and late life, and that those with good social connections tended to live longer.

According to the research, if you are lonely and sad you’ll probably die sooner. The researchers found a link between isolation and issues such as obesity, inflammation and high blood pressure, which can lead long term health issues.

The study also found that our needs for friendship, and how this affects health, change over the years.

In our early years, the size of our social network is most important for health. This is the same in late adulthood, when our health improves if we have a greater number of friends.

But in the main portion of adulthood, it isn’t so much the number of friends that affect health, but how those friendships help in terms of social support.

The key to a long, happy life is to have loads of friends when you’re young, focus on a small group of supportive mates in your twenties to 50s, then go back to meeting lots of new people as you get older.

But remember to exercise as the friendship won’t shed the calories you consume.

-Metro

The 7-Minute Workout That Targets Belly Fat

When it comes to high-intensity interval training (HIIT), the pros definitely outweigh the cons. While it may feel unpleasant to push your body to go faster and harder for that short time period, the rewards are worth it: HIIT helps you blast more belly fat, save time, and burn way more calories (even after your workout is long over) than a lower-intensity workout alone. A recent study published in the American College of Sports Medicine’s Health and Fitness Journal found that a few minutes of training at almost your max can accomplish all of this in way less time than a traditional workout.

Here is the list of top exercise targeting belly fat according to Pop Sugar Fitness experts

1. Jumping Jacks
Warm up your body with a vigorous stint of jumping jacks. Do these for a total of 30 seconds.

Jumping-Jacks

2. Wall Sit
Stand with your back against a wall, placing your feet about two feet out in front of you. Feet should be hip distance apart.
Bending your knees, slide your back down the wall until your knees are at 90-degree angles. Your knee joints should be over your ankle joints, so you may need to inch your feet further from the wall to create proper alignment. Don’t let your knees fall in on the midline of your body or sway outward.
Hold for 30 seconds.

Wall-Sit

3. Push-Up
Start in a plank position, with palms spread out evenly and your shoulders over your wrists and legs out behind you. Pull your belly button in, and keep your back straight.
As you lower and exhale, bend your elbows outward to the sides. Hold at the bottom before you raise back up.
Do as many reps as possible in 30 seconds.

Push-Up

4. Crunches
Sit on your mat and bend your knees, planting your feet on the floor. Put your palms behind your ears.
As you exhale, pull your abs in and lift your upper body. Inhale as you lower back down.
Keep your chin down to keep your neck from straining, and make sure your ribs are aligned with your hips.
Do as many reps as you can in 30 seconds.

Crunches

 

5. Squats
Stand with your head facing forward and your chest held up and out. Place your feet shoulder width apart or slightly wider. Extend your hands straight out in front of you to help keep your balance. Sit back and down like you’re sitting into an imaginary chair. Make sure your head stays facing forward, not down (focus on something in front of you to help), and that your upper body faces forward as well, bent slightly forward. Rather than allowing your back to round, let your lower back arch slightly as you descend.
Lower down so your thighs are as parallel to the floor as possible, keeping your knees over your ankles. Press your weight back into your heels. Keep your body tight, and push through your heels to bring yourself back to the starting position.
Squat

 

6. Chair step ups
Find a step, a bench, or a sturdy chair that when you place your foot squarely on it, your knee is at a 90-degree angle or larger.
Step up 20 times, leading with the right foot, then the left, bringing both feet completely onto the bench. To return to the starting position, lead with the right foot to step down to the floor, then the left, until ending with both feet on the ground. Switch legs, and start stepping with the left foot for 20 steps.

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7. Triceps Dips
Position your hands shoulder width apart on a secured bench, a stable chair, or your mat.
Move your bum in front of the bench with your legs bent and feet placed about hip width apart on the floor.
Straighten out your arms, and keep a little bend in your elbows in order to always keep tension on your triceps and off your elbow joints.
Now slowly bend at your elbows and lower your upper body down toward the floor until your arms are at about a 90-degree angle. Be sure to keep your back close to the bench.
Once you reach the bottom of the movement, slowly press off with your hands, and push yourself straight back up to the starting position. Repeat as many times as you can for 30 seconds.

Triceps-Dips

8. Plank
Lie face down on the floor, or face your mat on your knees. Place your palms so that your shoulders are aligned with your wrists close to your head.
Push off the floor, raising up off your knees onto your toes and spreading your fingers and pressing down with your palms. You can also try resting on your forearms as shown.
Contract your abdominals and pull your belly button in to keep yourself up and prevent your booty from sticking up. Hold for 30 secs

Plank

9. Lunge
Keep your upper body straight, with your shoulders back and relaxed and chin up (pick a point to stare at in front of you so you don’t keep looking down). Always engage your core.
Step forward with one leg, lowering your hips until both knees are bent at about a 90-degree angle. Make sure your front knee is directly above your ankle, not pushed out too far, and make sure your other knee doesn’t touch the floor. Keep the weight in your heels as you push back up to the starting position.
Repeat for a total of 30 seconds.

Lunge

Photos courtesy: Pop Sugar Fitness

Four Benefits of Exercise

Exercising for long periods of time every day won’t do you much good if you go on to eat unhealthy food. While we all know this, sometimes it’s difficult to get motivated to exercise because it takes some time to see the benefits. Today’s post is all about benefits the traditional benefits of exercise that you expect to read about, but also one benefit that you can expect to see almost immediately. Ladies, this benefit is one that you’ll love if you want to use less foundation too, so read on.

1. Build Muscle
Depending on the kind of exercise that you do, you can turn your body into a more efficient calorie burner. This is achieved by doing exercises that build muscle. I’m not talking body builder muscle – most women don’t have enough naturally occurring testosterone for this. I’m talking about lean muscle. There are several reasons we as women should want to build muscle, I’ll start with two:

a) It burns more calories than fat during activities. This is of particular importance if you have long term weight loss goals

b) It takes up less space than fat. Even though muscle weighs more, it takes up less space than fat so you get that lean and slim look that a lot of us women want.

2. Use it As An Outlet for Stress
According to an article on the Mayo Clinic website, physical activity stimulates various brain chemicals that leave you feeling happier and more relaxed. If you have ever heard of “runners high” this is what is being referred to. Also there is nothing like hitting a punching bag hard (if you have one) when you have had a hard day at work. If you’re not one for using intense cardio like running and kickboxing, yoga is also a fantastic way to relieve stress while moving your body in awesome ways that’ll have you feeling like a superwoman.

3. Increase Your Energy Levels
This sounds counter intuitive but exercising can help increase your energy levels. One of the ways it does this is by helping you be stronger because you have more muscle mass than you used to and this added strength can help you do things for longer than you could before. This is what happens when after two – three weeks of taking the stairs you don’t feel as tired as you did when you started.

4. Maintain Great Skin
If you’ll like to reduce the amount of makeup you use, you’ll love this benefit. Sweating is your body’s way of getting rid of toxins and when you exercise vigorously you sweat a lot. This sweat can help clean out your your pores, which reduces the buildup of dirt and can reduce your chances of breakouts and blackheads aka you don’t need as much foundation. Just make sure to take a bath after working out so as not to clog them up all over again.

Overall exercise is a good way to achieve your long term wellness goals whether they are about being healthier and stronger or about looking leaner and slimmer. It will help you get there faster. Plus if you are trying to lose weight and you incorporate exercise into your routine, you can eat a bit more and still achieve your goals.

-Bella naija

4 Easy Tips To Help You Lose Weight As A Couple

Will weight loss work out better if it is tackled alone or together as a couple? And how can couples embark on a healthy habits lifestyle together? These are questions anyone who’s looking to slim down asks. And we have answers!

Here are four easy tips for couples looking to loose weight together:

1. Communicate. And do it well
Get started, find a time to talk about the deeper values of going on a diet. Mistrust is easily created if thoughts like these come up: He wants to attract a new mate. She will make me change my hamburgers and quit drinking beer, and I will hate it.

A conversation about losing weight should, at first, be about inner values. What are the main reasons for losing weight? To live long to be great grandparents one day? To eat in a way that is sustainable for the planet? To set a good example for the kids? Agree on your goals first before discussing the way to get there.

2. Start small
It is a good idea to make initial change where it is easy. One partner might want to try out a new juicer or breakfast smoothie, while the other might prefer going to the local tennis club to pick up some class schedules. Small changes are the best way to start, leaving room for small corrections along the way.

3. Find balance and maintain it
There are just as many weight loss motivators in the world as there are diets. But it’s important to connect with your own inner desire to be well.

Who are your role models? What’s important to you? What are you obstacles? Now, compare them to your partner’s and create balance.

4. Focus on your attitude
A positive attitude goes along with positive mental, emotional and physical health. Setbacks come up, but it’s how you handle them that’s important. Stay positive (with an attitude of joyful discovery) and your parter will too!

-yourtango.com

Eat a handful of berries every day if you want to shed a few kilos

Simply swapping a chocolate bar or packet of sweets for a handful of berries as an afternoon snack can lead to nearly a stone of weight loss over a year.

Researchers found that people who snacked on the fruits ate fewer calories at their next meal. While ‘super berries’ such as acai and goji have been touted for their weight loss virtues, the scientists in this study looked at the effects of strawberries, raspberries, blackberries and blueberries.

Dr Lewis James, from the School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences at Loughborough University, said: ‘Our research shows an afternoon snack of mixed berries decreases energy intake at dinner.

‘It’s a simple method that might help people control and lose weight. ‘There are a number of potential health benefits of consuming berries, but this is the first time that consuming them as a snack has been shown to reduce how much people eat during the next meal of the day.’

 

Reasons why you should exercise as a couple

There are a number of physical and emotional benefits associated with couple workouts. They boost passion, synchronisation and a supportive spirit between couples. Throw in some endorphins and you have a real power boost in your relationship.

Here are the five most important benefits of working out as a couple:

1. Stay motivated: When you feel demotivated or lazy, your partner can boost your morale and get you moving. Research suggests that getting onboard a health and fitness plan with your partner increases the chances of you both sticking to the plan and achieving your weight loss or fitness goals.

2. Try new things: You might be into strength training, while your partner might be a yoga fan. Embarking on a workout plan with your partner offers you the chance to learn many new things. You can take up a fitness activity of your choice for a month and let your partner choose one for the next. Acroyoga is an activity that might interest both of you as it involves performing traditional yoga poses in pairs. It involves intimate and challenging routines that help improve flexibility, balance and strength.

3. Rekindle the passion: A healthy competition between you and your partner may be the best way to reawaken the excitement in your relationship and boost your libido. Training together and setting new challenges can be a great way to make things exciting between the two of you again. It can help you change the dynamic of your relationship to rekindle the passion it needs.

4. Enhance the efficiency of workouts: Research suggests that even the presence of another person affects your ability to perform an activity. Having your partner workout with you will make you feel more competent while doing an exercise and could help boost your speed and energy output.

5. Strengthen bond between partners: Couples that workout together have testified that exercising together has helped them feel more grounded and enabled them to start focusing on other important aspects of their life together. Supporting and motivating your partner to stick to a long-term fitness plan will bring the two of you closer

Love yourself first before considering dating

A relationship with another person isn’t going to make you happy if you aren’t already. If you get stressed easily or frustrated quickly over the simplest of things that means you haven’t developed skills to cope well with uneven situations. People who are happy with themselves are more attractive to others. Here are a few suggestions on how to work on self happiness and loving yourself.

Take care of your mind and body
Eat right. Food should be seen as a necessity not as a reward of punishment

Exercise, or at the minimum stay active
It’s about fueling your mind and body. Just 10 minutes of activity in the morning can get your body flowing and get your day off to a good start.

Have some quiet time
Sometimes your body and brain needs a moment to refuel. Take a deep breath and suck in some good air and sunshine.

Don’t let negative thoughts or emotions linger
It’s ok to acknowledge them, but then you must let them go

Lastly have fun
Sure you should work hard but you also need to play hard. Treat yourself to a funny movie, sing in the shower do things that make you smile and laugh.

 

People who work out feel less anxious

Regular exercise may help those who see their environments as threatening to feel less anxious.

Working out can make people feel more positive about our environment, thus helping us worry less about ambiguous situations.

Researchers looking into the correlation between perception of threat and exercise made the conclusion after conducting a study.