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A Festive approach to health

Wow, I can’t believe that we have come to the end of 2013!!!
Our blog has been in existence for over 10 months now and the passion that Nadia and I have for better alternatives to health & wellbeing has seen us build a great number of wonderful and dedicated followers.

I, as the Mum side of things would like to thank you all for your feedback and continued support. It has been a real treat creating and working alongside my daughter to inspire and promote increased health & wellbeing.
2014, with with your help, will be another amazing year for us.

Already in the works are videos, recipes (including an eBook from Nadia early in 2014), as well as exercise and nutrition advice from our own experience and research.

For now though, a topic that my clients inevitably bring up at this time of year… how you will keep fit, stress-free and still enjoy the festivities ahead at this time of year. The Festive approach to health…

Taking into consideration moving your body and the basic formula of input vs output will allow for the indulgences that can accompany the festive season. Enjoying a delicious crisp white wine & sweet treats with your loved ones at Christmas is absolutely nothing to feel guilty about! Thoughtfully prepared and delicious food is a brilliant foundation and you can expect to hear (and see) what is planned for our Christmas table later this week.

On the exercise-front; the TRX workout is designed for the total body. Using your own body weight to create a challenging and efficient session, it is perfect for this time of year when routine is the last thing on your mind!

These straps are in use in most gyms plus you can easily use them at home or on the go. A great Christmas gift perhaps and we found them here.

The following images using my gorgeous client Sara, will demonstrate how you can adapt these straps by shortening and lengthening, to work specific muscles and your core at all times.

KEY POINTS

  • Each image demonstrates the start and finish positions
  • Always take note of strap length – keep it taut at all times
  • Stability is essential to the success of each movement
  • Try for 10 reps of each easier exercise and 15-20 reps for the others
  • Do the program through 2-3 times with limited rest

Exercise 1 – Back

Adjust the straps around mid-body length. Commence with extended arms in “plank” position back on heels with palms facing in. With a long neck, keep your chin up and pull up keeping elbows close to your body and tight through your butt (glutes) with your core switched on. Target between shoulder blades and triceps in this movement.back 1back 2
Exercise 2 – Chest

Plank forward this time with the straps adjusted longer, to say thighs/knees. Drop forward whilst keeping core on and your butt tight. Try to maintain a 90-degree angle through the arms with your elbows aligned to shoulder blades and hands directly under elbows. Drop down as far as your body weight will allow into a push-up position then drive back up through pecs (chest) and arms.

chest 1chest 2
Exercise 3 – Legs

Squats: Adjust the straps to roughly chest height with your arms bent and feet wide. Sink into a deep squat sitting back into your heels and extending arms. Now pull up with a jump and land through your heels into a squat. Keep the straps taut at all times and emphasise your butt, quads and core.
 squat 1legs 2legs 1
Lunges: Using the same strap height from the above exercise, start with a knee lift, weight loaded on to the front leg, ensuring knee/hip/foot alignment. Your back leg pushes back into hip flexor.legs 3legs 4

Exercise 4 – Biceps

Adjust the straps to waist length and plank backwards with your back, butt and legs kept tight. Extend arms with palms facing in before bending from the elbow and bringing your hands toward either side of the neck. Work to keep elbows from dropping, focusing on biceps and then extend straight out.bicep 1bicep 2

Exercise 5 – Triceps

With straps around waist length, plank forward keeping a nice flat back with your hips and butt aligned. Make sure not to sag your back, extending your arms in line with shoulders and keeping a long neck. Focus on the triceps and bend from your elbow bringing hands to either side of the head. Ensure that elbows remain in position without moving arms up and down.biceps 1biceps 2

Exercise 6 – Core

Running Man BASIC: Start with straps at chest height and under your arms as per below image with your elbows back and shoulder blades down and back. Plank forward with one knee bent, your heel firm on the floor, back leg extended  with your weight on the front leg. Use a small elevation (jump) to change feet and leg position. r 1r 2
Running Man ADVANCED: With straps lengthened to your calves and both feet in the straps, place hands on the floor ensuring your body weight is over hands with shoulders aligned with hands. Alternate legs “running man” style coming in toward chest without lifting or dropping back. Focus on a strong core with your upper body held firm & butt on.
running man 2running man
Plank Pike: Same starting position as above though draw both knees in toward the chest followed by the pyke position (first image below) with your hips lifted and try to align with the shoulders. Drop back to plank and take legs to side split position (second image).
pike
 plank splits
Here you have yourself a highly effective and challenging workout. For Christmas, New Year’s or any other time, this is my Christmas gift to you all!!
I wish you all a wonderful festive season and a very Merry Christmas. May it be spent with the people that you love and enjoyed to the fullest with good food and cheer. We look forward to you joining us again in the New Year and until then, be safe, healthy and positive.

Viv xxx

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