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Fitness health and wellbeing

7 Thing You Can Do To Be Healthy This May

run

 

  • Swap coffee for Green tea in the morning

Why?

  1. Green tea is considered one of the healthiest drinks on the planet. It contains 1/3 the amount of caffeine than coffee, giving you a buzz without completely eliminating caffeine from your day.
  2. It is filled with antioxidants called polyphenols which rid your body of harmful free radicals, thus preventing disease.
  3. Fat burner? YES. Green tea is in nearly all fat burners and for a reason. Green tea has been proven to increase metabolism and has the ability to help you decrease body fat.
  4. Catechins help prevent infections and diseases and are known to kill influenza, and have anti-cancer properties!

Tea in Cup

  • Drink more water

It seems like such a simple task, however it would shock you to realise that many people don’t drink nearly enough water a day. Try to get around 2 litres of water a day.

Tip: Add some lemon and lime into your water for some extra flava

  • Yoga your way to happiness

The wonderful thing about yoga is you can use it before a workout or run as a means of stretching and you feel             more energetic afterwards, and you can do yoga on rest days to move your body. Stretching is so important for              your muscles to grow and I can’t recommend trying a yoga class enough. Go on. 1 class. Just try it, please.

  • Moisturize after a shower

      It is time to be your number one fan and love yourself from the inside, out. The reason I have added this one in           here is because I neglected my skin for so long and focussed on my food, gym and work. Your skin faces the                  elements every day and doesn’t get enough attention. Nothing relaxes me more than lighting some candles and a        good face moisturizer (what have I become). Side note- Use UV-A and UV-B protection even on cloudy day and            keep those wrinkles away…..

                                    applying, body lotion, care

  • Walk once a day

I have made it my goal to try and reach 10,000 steps a day. Take some headphones or meet a friend and walk. It’s       low intensity cardio that makes all the difference to your weight loss journey.

       Tip: Wearing a Fitbit or other step tracker app is a great way of keeping you motivated and focused on what                     you want to achieve.

 

  • Write a list of 5 things you hope to achieve by 2017

Once you do that, answer this.. How many of them have you began to achieve? It is nearly may and making a               plan is the first step to success. I find writing things down makes the plan more concrete and allows me to                     process what I need to do about it. Grab a pen and get writing.

        Tip: Treat yourself to a pretty notebook that you want to bring around – Pennys have cute ones for 2 euro (:

White Ceramic Teacup With Brown Liquid Inside

  • Challenge your body once a week

Breaking up your normal routine is a wonderful way to blast fat and keep you on your fit toes. I like to throw some      curve balls into my week such as hill sprints, box jumps and many spin classes that hurtttttt. Do something that           makes you feel unstoppable, go for a hike and embrace nature, even go book a kayak with a friend and make a day       of it. Get out of your comfort zone. Life is simply too short to put things off for another time.

action, exercise, figure

 

                                  Much love chicas

                                              XO

Fitness Recipes

Feel Fit this February

beach

The majority of people on the planet have taken the time this January to accept reality after Christmas. The feelings of being broke, gaining Christmas weight and trying to make a life plan hits us in the form of ‘January Blues’. It’s time for you to seize 2017 and kick start your healthy journey this month. Workout, eat healthier, meditate if needs be. Do something new. Challenge yourself, and inspire those around you.

If you have never gone for a run or entered a gym, do it now. If you have no money like a lot of us, home workouts are just as sweaty and effective. I have recently started focusing on full body workouts in the form of plyometric or ‘Tabata’. I have started running again and am feeling the benefits of getting faster, leaner and happier. I think it is essential to do some form of exercise every day, even if it’s a 30 minute walk. The more your body moves, the more it craves to me.

With regard to eating healthier, I stand by meal prep. If you don’t prepare, hunger takes over and impulse purchasing of anything spar offers WILL happen. It happens to the best of us. Buy some lunch boxes, get your bum in the kitchen and make some delicious and nutritious food.  You know what your own goal, you know what healthy foods are and what you should eat, so what’s stopping you?

Here is a food & exercise regime for you to follow 4-5 days a week this February <3 with luv, liv x

 

Food Journal

Breakfast options

  • 3 egg omelette with smoked salmon
  • 40g of rolled oats with scoop of protein powder and chopped banana
  • 3-4 Scrambled egg whites with mushrooms

Lunch options

  • Poached chicken/salmon with lettuce & avocado
  • Homemade pizza on a wrap with tomato pure, peppers and chicken
  • Homemade salad with chicken, quinoa, avocado, tomatoes and balsamic dressing

 

Dinner options

  • Zuchini pasta with chicken and tomatoes
  • Poached salmon with 75g rice (when dry)
  • Minced turkey mixed with peppers and sweet potato fries
  • Poached chicken with chopped veg and salad

 

 

Workouts

Day 1 Day 2 Day 3 Day 4 Day 5 Day 6 Day 7
10 minute sprints with 30 second intervals 10 Burpees 60 minute walk/ rest day from gym Foam roll about 30 seconds per muscle 10 minute sprints with 30 second intervals 10 knee tucks REST DAY
3 sets of 8 reps assisted pull-ups 15 Jump lunges Barbell squats 3 sets x16 reps Warm up with light weight front raises 10 burpees
3 sets of 16 lateral pull-downs 10 bodyweight jump squats Dumbbell lunges 3sets x8 reps per leg 3 sets x 16 chest press 20 mountain climbers
3 sets of 16 reps of low rows 60 High knees Goblet squat with kettle bell 3 setsx10 reps 3 setsx12 biceps curls with medium weight 60 High knees

 

ALL ABOVE X 3/4 SETS

3 sets of 12 Lateral raises 15 mountain climbers

 

ALL ABOVE X 3/4 SETS

3 setsx12 reps of leg press 3×16 chest flyes on cables 3 sets x 16 reps of shoulder press
3 sets of 12 reps of face pulls using rope 30 minute walk (try incline) 3 setsx 16 reps hamstring curl 3 x 10 tricep pulldowns using rope on cables 3 sets x 16 side lateral raises

 

3×16 light weight shoulder frontraises

 

 

Tag me @bodyfitgeek after your workouts ladies!!!! XXXXX

Fitness Healthy Eating

Tackle the Christmas Stone

girl

 

It’s that time of year again, New Year’s resolutions are in close sight and that 2016 body never happened. I will discuss some easy to follow tips so you can avoid the Christmas stone, and set you up for your weight loss journey in 2017.

 

Be Realistic

If you decide that over the holidays you won’t touch a drink or have desserts and chocolates, you’re only lying to yourself. It is a time to be merry and you’re surrounded by family and friends who can’t get enough Christmas pudding. Decide on a few Christmas nights out that you will limit yourself to 2 drinks and won’t eat something sweet for the night. This is achievable. Making unrealistic decisions only makes you feel lousy that you didn’t stick to them. Relax and enjoy your Christmas without over-indulging.

Set a goal

Decide in advance that you will go for a 30-60 minute walk on Christmas Eve, Christmas day and Stephens Day. This is only a small part of your day and can really help you keep on track of your fitness. Bring the family along, make it a tradition. Most likely your local gym is closed, but walking helps you burn lots of calories and you don’t even notice.

Home workout

As your gym is probably closed around the festive time, a home workout can burn just as much fat as any gym workout. Jump squats, burpees, jump lunges, push ups, sprints outside anyone? Try some plyometric work and notice how you can even sweat more than you do in the gym. Don’t know why plyometric training is? Google it. You will not regret. Sweat is fat crying as they say….

Buy a training diary

Grab a cheap planner (or one from paperchase for you stationary lovers) and plan your workouts on a weekly basis. This will keep you on track and help you stay motivated lalala NO REALLY. When its written in front on you, you are more likely to just get it done. If you don’t know how to go about making a workout plan, you can look it up on a number of websites or ask your gym if they create personalised ones (most do). I also have some plans in recent posts and will add to these if you guys want a weekly plan over Christmas.

Caloric intake doesn’t matter as much as diet

If you are only eating 1,000 calories a day, but the source is a take away, you won’t  get any results for all that training you’re doing. If you are putting in so much effort to train and motivate yourself, why throw it away on foods that can’t nourish your body? Think of your body as a machine. If you want it to be able to lift, sprint and look athletic, you have to provide fuel from the right source. You wouldn’t put diesel into a car that needs unleaded , so don’t put junk into your soon to be beach bod (you get the idea). Track your diet and minimise your intake of processed foods.

Christmas Dinner

Try not to grab seconds. This is when your eyes become bigger than your belly and you have three helping of the Christmas dinner as well as all the trimmings. You then retire to the couch and sleep the day away. Try and limit yourself to one helping per sitting and go for a brisk walk to reduce the  food-coma induced bloat. Bloating is normal after you eat as your stomach because your intestines are expanding and contracting to assist digestion, so don’t beat yourself up about a bloated tummy, it goes.

 

BALANCE

Enjoy the festive season and don’t feel guilty if you miss a few gym sessions and have a bad day or two. You’re only human, after all. The holiday comes once a year, but do not make excuses if you long for a fit and healthy lifestyle. It is a lifestyle, not two weeks of exercise followed by a month as a couch potato watching Netflix. Get up, get moving and get fit.

 

A healthy body assists a healthy mind. You have to look after yourself in all aspects throughout the year. To be healthy outside, you must be healthy inside and to do this you must love yourself through and through. Merry Christmas Everyone, Best wishes to you all xxxxx

Fitness

7 Day Ab Challenge!

bfg

7 DAY CIRCUIT CHALLENGE

I have put together a nice little ab/arm challenge to throw into the end of your workout, just to push you over the edge <3 You’ll feel leaner, look leaner & be satisfied with every workout!

 

The mean 15

15 burpees

15 spider planks

15 V ups

15 oblique crunches with kettle bell (maintain a neutral back)

15 alternating crunch hand-toe taps (lying on your back)

 

Plenty of twenties

20 Hanging leg raises

20 Side to side bench jumps

20 TRX pikes

20 Push ups

20 mountain climbers

 

My ultimate favourite

10 Jump knee tuck-into press up

50 mountain climbers

20 scissors

1 minute plank

20 Reverse crunch on bench

12 oblique pulses with kettle bells (neutral back)

 

Plyo PHUN

15 squat jump twists

20 alternating lunge jumps

20 burpees into push ups

20 elevated toe taps

20 box jumps

 

Squeeze please

20 Elbows to hand plank

30 second side plank (per sides)

15 elevated push ups

15 elevated mountain climbers

 

Full belly blast

10  ab roll outs

20 alternate heel touches

20 bottoms up

12 ‘’Standing cable wood chops’’ both sides ( I use 13.5kg)

20 Decline sit ups with plate (10kg is what I use)

 

The final sweat

10 weighted burpees

20 leg raises on bench

20 scissors

15 spiderman push ups

 

If you manage to do complete this, I promise you’ll feel the benefits,

 

Liv x

Fitness

Learning to train with ulcerative colitis

HNCK1927

As a UC sufferer, I understand the concerns associated with trying to maintain a healthy body weight while coping with symptoms, side effects of medications and post-surgery recovery time. As well as this, some people undergo months of a flare without any relief and it all seems that bit too much. On top of this, trying to live a healthy life in a constant routine seems impossible to achieve. This blog post is dedicated the hundreds of people out there who strive for simplicity, happiness and motivation. I can only speak from experience to do with this topic and I have complete months of in depth research regarding the best ways to reduce ANY symptom of UC.

 

Reducing symptoms

 

  1. Make bland and basic choices

When it comes eating, every molecule that touches your lips seems to impact on your colon. Naturally, we who experience symptoms a lot are advised to steer clear of spicy foods, high fibre foods, most green veg and the list goes on. How did I feel when I was told this? Devastated. Who wouldn’t be? But once you accept it and get into the swing of things, you realise the pain simply isn’t worth the tasty price. Stick to boiling or baking your meat/fish and definitely avoid deep fried fatty foods. Not only does this cause inflammation of the colon, it can cripple you in pain for a few hours and fire you into a flare.

  1. Alcohol

When I don’t have a flare up I do enjoy the ol’ beverage like anyone would, however I can assure you, you’ll be in that hospital bed in no time if you’re undergoing flare symptoms (i.e. rectal bleeding, dehydration, inflammation of the colon) say bonjour to the hospital bed for a week. Having said this, I have found that the main problem with having alcohol when you suffer from IBD is the sugar content. Ciders, beer and wine would actually increase your risk of a flare as opposed to spirits with low sugar levels. I would therefore encourage cordials as mixers with water instead of sugary drinks. There is a clear association between Alcohol consumption and disruption of liver and gut cells, causing an increased risk of liver failure and relapse of UC. So to sum up, you probably shouldn’t be drinking. This is a very big ask for most of the population which is why I’ve shared my round about ways above.

 

  1. Exercise – the medicine I use

Exercise not only benefits the mind, maintains weight and reduces cardiovascular complications; it also has positive effects on many IBD symptoms. It is known that a person suffering from UC is at risk of bone disorders such as osteoporosis and arthritis. Due to the inability of nutrient absorption, it is essential that we get sufficient nutrients from our diet and even supplements (Calcium, Vit D). Regular weight lifting can strengthen bones and reduce these associated risks. Feeling stronger automatically makes you feel happier and beings you one step closer to a healthier you. I enjoy exercising every day as I feel I’m not letting UC define me or debilitate me in any way. Tips for this would be limit cardio time if you have increased bowel movements. Ensure there is an accessible toilet in your gym and do push yourself. Do not let the disease make you feel weak. If you have had surgery, the situation is a lot different and you need to accept for that time you are healing and cannot work out. Simple as.

  1. Gut flora – your new best friend

It is known that the relationship between the microorganisms in your colon and colitis go hand in hand. If your microbiota isn’t happy, neither are you. The gut flora is diminished in patients suffering from ulcerative colitis, causing digestive problems and nutrient uptake. If you take flora altering drugs such as antibiotics, symptoms worsen causing diarrhoea, and leaves room for harmful species to grow such as C. difficile. It is a good idea to take probiotics daily especially when on a course of antibiotics or during a flare. Ensure you are getting the correct amount of nutrients and get regular blood tests done to rule out anaemia etc. Avoid trigger foods which cause a flare and see your doctor regularly.

 

UC = ulcerative colitis

Flare = When symptoms recur and become very uncomfortable and sometimes life threatening.

Gut flora- Microorganisms in the gut that play a role in immune protection

 

If you enjoyed this post let me know and I can answer further questions

Fitness Healthy Eating Recipes

Protein Carrot Cake

Protien Carrot Cake

Here’s a little something different – Treat yourself to a healthy dessert during the summer nights 🙂

Ingredients

400g Carrots

1 Cup Rolled Oats

3 Egg whites, 1 yolk

Vanilla extract

100g Coconut flour

Vanilla Whey Protein ¾ scoop

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp baking powder

10g Shredded coconut

 

Frosting/Icing

150g Low fat cream cheese

150g low fat vanilla greek yogurt

1-2 Tbsp Vanilla extract

2 Scoops Vanilla protein powder

Coconut flakes

Handfull of White chocolate chunks (Optional)

 

To do

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius
  2. Peel & chop up carrots and blend in a blender with all other cake ingredients above.
  3. If the mixture seems too liquidy, add more oats.
  4. Line tray with baking paper, and add cake mixture slowly.
  5. Put in oven for 45-50 minutes.
  6. While the cake is baking, the frosting can be prepared.
  7. Add all of the frosting ingredients and whip until a thick texture forms.
  8. When cake is baked, allow to cool on wire rack for an hour before icing.
  9. Spoon the icing onto the cake and smooth over, then sprinkle coconut flakes onto the top with white choco chips!

Voila, Enjoy x

 

Fitness

Fitness for dummies

Weight lifting

I feel the time has come for me to truly write a beginners guide to training. I found this post difficult to write as I have been in the gym a long time and couldn’t really remember how I brought myself into the weight area of the gym, or where I learned the majority of what I do know. I once had 0 clue about weights and the gym, and still have so much to learn, but I hope this post sheds some light on the topic for beginners. So in order to write this, I questioned many of my friends/readers about why they find it difficult to enter the gym and what would entice them inside. As many Bodyfit Geek readers have access to a gym, they need to overcome the obstacles and understand there should be nothing to fear in the gym. I am going to attempt to tackle this right now and give you the reassurance you need to give it a go.

There are a few questions you must ask yourself before entering a gym; why haven’t you tried going until now? What are your goals? These basic questions can help you understand what you hope to achieve whether it be for health reasons, increasing fitness levels, body shaping , increasing strength, toning or a combination of all. So the real question is Why don’t you go to the gym? Many readers answered with intimidation, lack of knowledge of equipment and exercises, embarrassment and not enough time in the day. These problems each need to be tackled one by one..here it goes.

Lack of Knowledge

For regular gym bunnies this may be repetitive but this blog is to inform people who have never stepped foot into a gym. Weight training is simply a form of exercise that involves lifting weights. The first thing to state is always start off with light weights, and do not increase these too soon. I have listed types of equipment below that you should become familiar with. After this, I will explain some terms used by trainers who write programmes etc. The exercises I briefly mention below are not too advanced and anyone reading this is very much capable of carrying them out.

Equipment and machinery for – working arms (Biceps and Triceps), chest and back

  • Dumbbell (Free weights)db

 

Dumbbells are found in every commercial gym and are used to perform chest press, shoulder press, bicep curls, tricep kickbacks and front raises (Youtube these moves if you are not familiar)

 

  • Barbell

Use light weight (10kg) to perform movements such as bent over row, Clean and Press, front raises, chest press and shoulder press.

 

  • Lateral pull down machine

This machine targets different back muscles depending on where you choose to grip the bar. Leaning back about 30 degrees, Pull the bar towards your chest while squeezing your lats. Think of squeezing your shoulder blades together to pinch & hold a piece of paper in place. Make sure you feel the squeeze in your back muscles and not so much in your arms (use low weight). Hold at contracted position for 1/2 seconds and then slowly return to starting position. During this movement you should not lean back too far, as this will put strain on your lower back.

  • Kettle bells kb

Kettle bells are useful little gems when you want to increase cardio by performing kettle bell swings, as well as using them for sumo squats or even holding them when carrying out single leg lunges.

Working legs (Glutes, Hamstrings, Quadriceps, Calves)

  •  Squat rack

This is a very diverse piece of equipment as it also contains a 20kg barbell which can be used for squats, deadlifts, bent over rows, shoulder press etc. As well as this, squat racks can be used for pull ups and chin ups. This is a very important piece of equipment in the gym and you just become familiar with racking the bar safely. Do not fear asking for help with this as safety comes first. Everyone starts somewhere, and at some stage, personal trainers did not know how to use a squat rack. Remember that.

  • Leg press machine

This is found in essentially all gyms and involves weighted plates being manually added to the machine. Start by adding the lightest weight plates to each side and gradually increase to understand your strength. As leg press is a compound movement, it means many muscle groups are used (Glutes, quads, hamstrings). Place legs on the platform about shoulder width apart (can vary depending on muscle targets) and release safety handle to allow weight to be released. Push the platform away from you until your legs are fully extended. Never lock out your knees. Lower the platform and bring your knees towards your chest, and fully extend again. Fully lock the security handle when the repetitions are complete.

  • Hamstring/Leg curl

An isolation movement is performed on this machine targeting the hamstring muscles. It involves placing legs on a padded lever and flexing the knee. Hold the flexed position and slowly return to starting position.

  • Leg/quadriceps extension

This involves extending your leg fully while legs are holding the padded weight on a machine.  This machine involves pushing the weight and opposes muscles used in the hamstring curl seen above.

Don’t forget the most important tool of all when exercising-

  • Body weight

You can use your own body weight to perform movements such as push ups, planks, body weighted squats, pull ups, leg raises. The list is endless!

Other things to take note on:

Repetitions: This is the amount of one exercise performed consecutively.

Sets: This is the amount of cycles of repetitions that you carry out.

Training ‘core’: Exercises to increase strength in abdominal muscles, back muscles and pelvic muscles.

HIIT training: High interval intense training involves bursts of anaerobic exercises with slower and less intense recovery periods in between (i.e Sprint for 30 seconds, jog for 30 seconds for 10 minutes)

PT: Personal trainer

I recommend training different body parts on different days. When beginning I used to use every machine whether it be training my legs back or arms. Now I have come to understand that going into the gym with no programme is like entering a swimming pool with an anchor on your leg. You really need to have a plan made and know what you want to achieve. You could use up a lot of energy and see 0 results because of this mistake.

Intimidation

I don’t think a single person has NOT felt intimidated one time or another in the gym. The key to overcoming this is looking at the bigger picture. People go to the gym because they want to improve their body image, increase their fitness and wellbeing and simply feel good. Even though you may feel like all eyes are on you and your clumsiness, I can assure you they are not. It’s hard to come to terms with the fact that people are very self-obsessed in a gym environment. As a matter of fact, you really are just a number to every other gym goer and this should not prevent you from going to blow off steam. Ways to tackle this will be increasing your self-esteem by gaining knowledge on exercises. Plus, the more you go the gym, the more conditioned you will become to using equipment. You will get used to it sooner or later.

(Let’s be real.. I was in the gym about a month ago doing HIIT (High interval intense training) on a treadmill and fell off, most embarrassing moment. All I wanted to do was go home, but instead I stayed as long as possible until the feeling of utter embarrassment wore off. You gotta accept it happens & realise everyone makes mistakes and feels intimidated, but they really aren’t!)

Unapproachable Staff

This does fit into intimidation at the gym, however I felt it was so extreme it needed a paragraph on its own. If the personal trainers at the gym are not helpful or approachable, this should not deter you from all gyms. It is beyond me how people who choose to train people as a career can give off the impression as if they don’t want to help or have anything to do with potential clients. If you do not know how to use a machine or do not understand a workout or programme, you should feel you can ask a personal trainer as that is what the gym is paying them for. If you feel you can’t do this, maybe ask someone who is doing it to show you, or even a friend. If this still is not possible, I would consider changing gyms, as this environment is not good. Some readers would be interested in a buddy plan, where you can go with a friend to the gym as a guest on a pass. I highly recommend this as going once does give you the confidence to continue to test your abilities.

Men only zone

This is a common misconception. The majority of readers find it very daunting to head over to the weight lifting area as they feel it is packed with men and they would look silly if they went over to lift weights. All I can say is nuh-uh. The weight area is for ANYONE who want to learn more and improve their physique. I feel this issue varies as there are plenty of women in my own gym who work out in the weights area and that this is growing in popularity. However if you feel that this is a problem, a friend can always calm these fears if you bring them with you. Also some gyms have a women’s only area if you really don’t want to train there. The way I see it though is men and women do everything else together, so why should training be any different? You really need to get through this one by slowly allowing yourself to get more confident, and making new friends in the gym the more you go.

Don’t know what workouts to do.

First things first, get a programme from either a personal trainer, a friend who knows their stuff, online coach or even from a reliable internet source. This is such a simple step, yet can be detrimental to you kicking off your gym days if you do not do this. Also I’ve been asked about ab workouts etc. My simple answer is, if your body fat percentage is not low enough, your abs will not be seen. Majority of slim people still have too high a body fat %, meaning all of their painful crunches and sit ups have gone to waste. Other workouts such as squats and deadlifts still work these muscles along with many other ones, which is why they are so important in training. You should be shown had to do these carefully by a professional.

Cardio

I know people think I’m the anti-cardio girl (slightly true) but cardio is SO important for maintaining a healthy heart and reducing risks of so many diseases. Always incorporate low intensity exercise into your week such as walking, cycling etc. as well as higher intensity training. If you only run, or cycle, you can still lose weight, but it will pack on much quicker and will not tone your muscles.

Best time to go to the gym

In my gym, I notice the busy times to be at around 8-9am, 12-2 pm and 6-9pm. This reflects that people gym before work, during lunch and after work. If you feel your schedule is too busy to exercise, you are fooling yourself. There is always an hour in the day which should be for you, and if there isn’t, something needs to change. It is important for your physical and mental health, so buy a diary and plan where you can fit your workouts in.

Always remember to ASK SOMEONE-anyone

If you are ever confused about what exercises to do or are unsure about your safety while carrying out an exercise please ask someone around you. Bite the pride and ask, as it will remain with you for your gym days. Feel free to drop me an email on info@bodyfitgeek.com. I stress that I am not a PT but can offer my advice on what has worked for me & info from the many talented people I have had the opportunity to have worked with over the last year.

This blog is simply to provide a more thorough understanding of terminology and equipment. Each person reading this blog has different strengths and body weight; therefore I cannot recommend certain weights to every reader. I have just provided some basic views and am always happy to help anyone with questions. Go over any advice you have read with a PT at the gym when possible and stop movements immediately if you feel pain.

& Finally—Thank you ALL so much for voting for me in the Aussie blog awards. Still so happy I won best readers’ choice awards and I want to continue providing everyone with good quality information, tips and recipe ideas.

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I must say a special thank you to my science girls of UCD for providing their individual thoughts on the gym and providing great ideas for this post. S.O to Ashleigh B too <3 Have a smashing summer guys xxxx

BFG TRIC

 

Fitness Healthy Eating

‘The Bloat’ is real.

yogaaa

Let’s not beat around the bush here, food is confusing, carbs are confusing, and losing weight isn’t easy at all. I thought I would take a different approach and write a blog post aimed for people who suffer with any kind of daily bloating, gluten sensitivity, IBS or suffer from IBD like myself. I have included some tips which have helped me along the way, but stress I am not a nutritionist or doctor so always get a second opinion.

I have received lots of different opinions with regard to my health and was always told a high fibre diet was good for me.. which unfortunately was misleading. Don’t get me wrong, it is all well and good for those capable of digesting food like normal intestines should, however for people who have a ‘food baby’ more than they had hoped, keep reading. I feel this is also quite topical as the rise in obesity/type II diabetes is increasing by a frightening amount.

In my opinion, the most important factors to understand when reducing ‘’the bloat’’ include the glycemic index (GI), gluten and fibre.

  1. Glycemic Index      

A glycemic index, more commonly known as low GI foods is something I adhere to on a daily basis. Carbohydrates are ranked from 0-100 according to their effect on our blood sugar levels. Low GI foods are absorbed and digested slowly, therefore slowly releases Glucose during the day. High GI foods cause an insulin spike in our blood levels. This spike causes the liver to store fat as glycogen, but let’s not get too into the science behind this. There are a number of Low GI Foods which I include in my diet and highly recommend;

  • Rolled oats
  • Fruits and Vegetables
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Quinoa
  • Beans
  • Nuts

I have not included brown/whole wheat breads here as I am not able to eat these with my condition. Some symptoms of coeliac disease/ gluten intolerance are very similar to ulcerative colitis and therefore I will generalise my recommendations here.

High GI foods I would avoid include:

  • Table sugar
  • White bread/bagels
  • Sugary cereals
  • Soft drinks/Sodas
  • Watermelon
  • White rice

Not only will a low GI diet help you burn fat, you will see a major increase in energy levels also. If you do consume High GI foods, make sure to eat them after waking up, as your body has been in ‘’famine’’ for around 7 hours. Also, if you are taking too much whey protein (which I do at times) and find it is causing a significant bloat, try switching to casein for a little while as it does not spike insulin levels as much as whey. Ideally, a person should be taking in both whey and casein daily from their diet to aid protein synthesis and slow protein breakdown, however timing is key so research this.

Although some complex carbs fall into high GI, the only way to know what works best for you is trial and error.

  1. GLUTEN

I’m sure you all have noticed how popular gluten-free diets have become, but have you ever asked what is gluten? Gluten is proteins found in grains such as wheat, spelt and barley. I do not practice a 100% gluten free diet, but I try reducing gluten intake as much as I possibly can. Gluten can cause the body to initiate an immune response on the intestine in coeliac disease patients, similar to that of UC disease. Gluten intolerance causes symptoms such as bloating, abdominal pain and flatulence. People suffering from irritable bowel disease will also show discomfort and pain when eating food containing gluten.

Avoid foods with gluten such as; beer, pastas, cereal, sauces, crisps, pizza and fries.

  1. FIBRE

Fibre is the most controversial on the list. Why? Because patients with IBS are told to have a high fibre diet, while patients with IBD are told to have a low fibre diet. Based on family and friends with IBS, I would advise a low fibre diet if you do suffer from pain and swelling of the abdomen after eating. If you do have a disorder remember all of my advice should be overlooked by a physician.  Anywaaaaay, I always have a low fibre diet and believe me when I say the pain is real if I do not follow this.

I will begin with Foods to avoid;

  • Green vegetables are hard to digest (Broccoli, Spinach, Kale (unfort), Brussel sprouts
  • Onions
  • Brown rice
  • Whole wheat/whole grain breads
  • Be aware of certain spices

When in doubt, Drink peppermint tea!

These conditions can all be brought on by stress. Try to relax and do something you love once a day. Try to exercise, whether it is walking, yoga, or weight lifting. Increasing activity will also aid a better and undisrupted night sleep. Take a bubble bath, light some candles, do whatever needs to be done.

I can also guarantee most readers do not drink enough water. To be honest, the world should add a reminder to their phone.. DRINK WATER NOW. We need 6-8 glasses a day, and that isn’t taking into account extra water loss from activity. Also alternate between green teas as this boosts metabolism.

Sometimes diet isn’t enough to aid symptoms of irritable bowel. Mild medications are available to soothe discomfort and reduce bloating. Discuss further with your medic J

Specifically For Ulcerative Colitis Sufferers <3

  • It is recommended to avoid certain lactose-containing products, which is why I have almond milk instead of regular cow’s milk. It is also lower in calories too! Be careful though, get your calcium from yoghurt, feta cheese or supplements-(do not rely on these).
  • Alcohol causes a flare in ulcerative colitis disease patients and will run down the immune system & increase symptoms such as mouth ulcers and bleeding. Try to avoid as much as possible.
  • A low residual diet goes along way after a bout of steroids and a serious flare. This involves refined foods, well cooked vegetables, fish etc. It’s pretty bland but definitely aids recovery time.
  • Take probiotics daily. This ensures your bowel has the healthy flora it requires and boosts your system against infections of the colon.
  • Sleep is essential for improving and immunity. Try to get 7-9 hours per night.
  • Iron supplements shouldn’t be taken by UC patients as it cannot be properly absorbed by the intestine. Try eating foods high in iron, as well as iron transfusions if anaemia is v. bad.

 

Any questions on above info please email info@bodyfitgeek.com. Also I advise anyone to overlook the above info with a GP if in any doubt as diets and symptoms differ for each patient.

 

Much love, Olivia xxx

Fitness Healthy Eating

Not achieving your results? This may be why

transoformation

Are you not getting out what you put in? There may be a few reasons you feel that failure is your best friend these days. Based on my experience, a combination of no no’s can add up and just bring you ten steps back from your goal. You need to stop, regroup and breathe. Every journey has ups and downs and it is solely up to you to take control of your life. You must stop making excuses or blaming others for things that you aren’t happy with in your life. You will get on top of things if you re-evaluate everything piece by piece. I have put together a few major reasons as to why I did not reach my goal for so long. Don’t get me wrong, I still have bad days, where I don’t eat as clean as I should, and drink a glass of wine or ten with my girls, but it is so important to relax from time to time for your own mental health. My blog is new enough to the scene, but I hope to not only promote healthy eating & fitness in a time of an obesity epidemic, but to also communicate how important exercise is for your mind. Anyway, I went on a bit of a tangent so here are some possible causes for your setbacks;

  • Portion sizes

I guarantee you that the majority of people have more than one portion size per meal. This can be detrimental to your diet as you think you are eating correctly, yet you’re not changing shape and feel disheartened. My best advice would be to look up correct portion sizes online or to use the palm rule; Make sure the meat and vegetables on your plate are similar to the size of your palm.

  • Energy-Dense Foods

This is the amount of energy/kcal/calories (whatever you want to call it) per gram of food. It is known that carbs contain 4 calories per gram; protein contains 4 calories per gram also, while fat contains 9 calories per gram. Don’t let this scare you away from fats please! Unsaturated fats are essential in your diet; however you can eat half the amount of fat to meet caloric requirements. The aim is to eat less energy dense foods as they will fill you up at less of a caloric expense.

  • Weight lifting but still running…

I must be careful here. If your ultimate goal is to lose weight then yes, do go ahead. HOWEVER. Lifting weights essentially allows you to torch fat while building muscle. When you run at the same speed, you are burning not only calories, but muscle too. This is detrimental if you want ‘’abs’’, or any sort of toning really. If you feel guilty because you are just doing a weight session and feel you need some cardio in your life, check out HIIT training, or simply walking. HIIT training is when you perform high-intensity exercises within time intervals. This involves pushing your body as hard as possible to bring up your heart rate and then taking a 30 second ‘’rest’’ period. Check out my other blog for details on types of HIIT training.

  • Nutrition

The issue may simply lie in your day to day food choices. Evaluate your diet and how much macronutrients you are having in comparison to your body weight. My blog on ‘Food Shopping with BodyFit Geek’ gives some ideas of what foods I buy each week. Balance is key and living a healthy life does involve planning and preparing meals. If you leave your meals up to time and chance, you will probably have an unhealthy diet.

  • Environment

Every person will suffer from their environment whether it be at home, in school/college, or at work. The key here is if you want to change your body, communicate with friends and family. It is next to impossible to achieve a major transformation if people in your household continue to make poor food choices or make meals for you at times. Family are renowned for the ‘ah go on, have one’ attitude. DON’T FALL INTO THE TRAP. Simply say no, think of the sweat you shed in the gym and you’ll succeed. I think this factor is one of the hardest to overcome, however if you talk about what your goals are and make it clear you do not want to be that human garbage bin, there should be no more problems. If people in your life don’t support you, ditch them. They ain’t worth it.

  • Burn more than you consume

At the end of the day, if you burn more calories than you intake in a day, you will lose weight. Simple fact. Just be mindful of how you go about this and never dip into unhealthy methods. Your health is your wealth, so be kind to your mind.

  • Alcohol use or abuse

Last but not least, al-co-hol. I’m sad to say this is the main culprit in failing to meet your goals. Why do you ask? It is filled with empty calories. There are 7 calories per gram which is sad for all you vino lovers. Moderation is key. This will not always stand by you and one month won’t be as great as the other, but begin by reducing the amount of days you have alcohol, then move on to units, until you feel comfortable enough to stop drinking for a month altogether. If you feel this is too much of a commitment, definitely look into cutting down at least. Results are worth it, I promise.

transoformation

I have reached the end of my blog for today and just want to say I am overwhelmed that I have been nominated for the Health & Lifestyle award  the most aussome readers choice award with Her.ie. What a pinch me moment! I love this blog because of all you readers & I am fuelled to continue by your comments and support. So just a massive thanks to everyone who voted for me!

BFG out xxx

Fitness

The Headon Boxing Academy

Headon Boxing Academy

As most of you have seen from recent posts, I tried my first ever boxing class. Most people associate boxing with injury, danger and essentially just fear the thought of trying it out. Stop right there. Going to that boxing class was such an eye opener for me. Not only does it challenge your fitness, but allows you to adapt and learn new skill sets while increasing your endurance. I fell in love with it so much that I will now be taking part in their Charity fight night programme! If you have ever wanted to try something different and didn’t know where to begin, look no further. What surprised me the most was how safe the class was and nothing like what I expected!

Classes with the Headon boxing academy are held in two locations; Chapter 2 fitness in Sandyford, and Crossfit 353 on Bath Ave. These classes are ran by Sean and Paddy, both former Leinster and Irish Champions who represented Dublin Boxing team. They both are qualified IABA boxing coaches and great fun to work with. As I am a complete beginner who wouldn’t know how to throw a punch, they provided a fun environment that allowed me to learn at a steady pace. I am so excited for my next class and couldn’t recommend these guys more.

The Headon boxing academy is renowned for organising Charity fight night programmes, raising thousands of euros for worthy causes in the process. The Headon brothers train all participants over to ensure a safe and successful fight night! The latest programme offers 6 week training to prepare for a March Fight night which will take place in the Talbot Hotel, Stillogan. This programme is unique in the sense that you can see what it is like to be a fighter and live the whole experience while raising money for a charity!

Could you be a fighter? There are limited places available so make sure you contact Sean or Paddy for more details: headonboxing@gmail.com

I wanted to change up my gym programme & look into CrossFit as well and when I heard about this I had to give it ago. Even if you try boxing and it isn’t your thing, don’t give up. There are many options out there including yoga, boxfit, or one of my go to classes, Body Pump. I couldn’t recommend trying a class with Sean & Paddy even just to see what all the fuss is! You won’t regret it. Email me on info@bodyfitgeek.com with any questions.

x

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