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Fitness Advice & Exercise Ideas

30-minute Kettlebell Workout for Beginners

30 Minute Kettlebell Workout for Beginners

I’ve created this 30-minute workout that’s suitable for beginners! Why? Because you do however many reps that you feel comfortable within the allocated time – absolutely no pressure to go faster until you learn the movements.

Try out this kettlebell workout for beginners

Be sure to keep an eye out for more youtube videos appearing on my channel and blog page! I’ll posting lots of fitness videos and exercise demonstrations this year. A big focus of mine is getting people to perform exercises properly. So, I do have pretty long explainations in my videos. But it’s worth learning the correct movement patterns from the get go!

Want more help with your exercise selection?

Check out my membership site – Barefaced Fitness On Demand – for inspiration for your workouts. If you want even more help with your fitness, check out Online Personal Coaching.

Your exercise challenge!

Try out the exercises in the video above and let me know how you got on! Even better, if this video helped you then tag me @barefacedfitness on Instagram in your story or post.

Once you’ve mastered the basic movements, start to up the reps and see how many you can do in that 20 seconds with good technique!

You can also switch up the intensity increasing the weight and doing more rounds or playing with the interval timing.

workout for beginners

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Fitness Advice & Exercise Ideas

3 Leg Exercises 3 Ways: Bodyweight, Banded and Weighted

3 Leg Exercises 3 Ways: Bodyweight, Banded and Weighted

Looking for some new inspiration for your home workouts? Lot’s of us get used to the same old exercises but as I specialise in workouts for women, I’ve got lots of ways of adapting exercises based on what you have access to! So whether you’re doing bodyweight workouts, want to make use of those resistance bands or happen to have a couple of dumbbells, there is something here for you.

How to Do Toning Exercises with Just One Weight

Be sure to keep an eye out for more youtube videos appearing on my channel and blog page! I’ll posting lots of fitness videos and exercise demonstrations this year. A big focus of mine is getting people to perform exercises properly. So, I do have pretty long explainations in my videos. But it’s worth learning the correct movement patterns from the get go!

Want more help with your exercise selection?

Check out my membership site – Barefaced Fitness On Demand – for inspiration for your workouts. If you want even more help with your fitness, check out Online Personal Coaching.

Your exercise challenge!

Try out the variations in the video above and let me know how you got on! Even better, if this video helped you then tag me @barefacedfitness on Instagram in your story or post.

Once you’ve mastered the basic movements, increase the resistance if you’re using bands or weights!

You can also switch up the intensity by slowing down the tempo, adding in pauses and increasing sets and reps. 

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Diet & Nutrition

Are you getting enough protein in your diet?

Are You Getting Enough Protein?

Protein is probably the most important macronutrient! Proteins are the building blocks of the body. Putting the desire of a toned physique aside, protein is essential for repair and growth.
 
Consuming a range of protein sources, (specifically amino acids), plays a key role in our diets. It’s important for general health and functionality (1). Sometimes, a closer look is needed to make sure our intake is adequate, if not optimal!

What does protein actually do?

Protein is made up of amino acids. Our body produces some amino acids but the rest is needed from our dietary intake.

Dietary amino acids play an important role in maintaining health. They help stimulate muscle growth and energy production in the body. They also help regulate digestion, sleep-wake cycles and absorption of vitamins and minerals.
 
As well as having a role in fat metabolism, immune function and hormone production. They also provide tissue growth and boost collagen in the skin.
how much protein

Carbohydrates & Fats

A lot of people focus on fat and carbohydrate intake to make a change to their body composition but as long as minimum requirements are met, carbs and fats are actually interchangable and don’t matter that much when it comes to weight loss (2).

I know a lot of people think that keto is king when it comes to weight loss, but it’s difficult to adhere to and tends to be a short-term fix. Personalised nutritional programming has a far greater affect on weight loss than ketogenic dieting, even if it shows initial results (3).

So if you think carbs are the devil or that fat makes you fat, think again!

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What's the recommended intake?

The recommended minimum dietary intake is 0.8g protein per kilo of body weight or lean body mass. Yet, this amount is widely considered to be too little for optimal benefits (4). And that’s not just for gym-goers either!
 
Studies show that an increased protein intake is important to retain muscle mass (5). It begs the question as to why there isn’t more of an emphasis on protein intake. It is not the key focus on a lot of diets, even though it benefits overall health, recovery and muscle growth.
 
We need to put the focus on protein and stop focusing on carbs and fats as the be-all and end-all of a healthy diet.

What's the optimal intake?

So, now for the good stuff! What you’ve been looking for…
 
An optimal intake of protein for all the benefits mentioned is at least 1.4g per kilo of body weight or lean body mass.
 
You can even go as high as around 3g per kilo, though this might be quite difficult to achieve. 
 
A good number to aim for is 1.6-2g and this is both for dieting and muscle gain/toning. 
 
This is because protein is satiating (it will keep you full). We’ve already touched upon all the benefits of protein in terms of muscle growth and repair.
 
But, don’t worry, an increase in protein does not automatically mean big muscles! That’s not how it works. 
am I eating enough protein?

How to implement this!

For muscle definition or toning, consume a meal or snack containing 20-40g protein every 3-4 hours. This could be supplemented with a shake if you’re finding it difficult!

For weight loss, I’d suggest a similar approach but you don’t have to worry too much about the frequency of protein consumption, particularly if you’re doing intermittent fasting.

But, I would still focus on getting enough protein in when you do eat, and it is easier when you spread it out throughout the day.

Key Takeaways

  • Protein should be your key focus when it comes to macronutrients.
  • Increased intake is beneficial for weight loss and muscle gain.
  • More protein does not mean more muscle – you have to train a lot for that!

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References

1 – Wu G. Amino acids: metabolism, functions, and nutrition. Amino Acids. 2009 May

2 – Gardner CD, Trepanowski JF, Del Gobbo LC, Hauser ME, Rigdon J, Ioannidis JPA, Desai M, King AC. Effect of Low-Fat vs Low-Carbohydrate Diet on 12-Month Weight Loss in Overweight Adults and the Association With Genotype Pattern or Insulin Secretion: The DIETFITS Randomized Clinical Trial. JAMA. 2018 Feb

3 – Vranceanu M, Pickering C, Filip L, Pralea IE, Sundaram S, Al-Saleh A, Popa DS, Grimaldi KA. A comparison of a ketogenic diet with a LowGI/nutrigenetic diet over 6 months for weight loss and 18-month follow-up. BMC Nutr. 2020 Sep

4 – Deer RR, Volpi E. Protein intake and muscle function in older adults. Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care. 2015 May

5 – Wolfe RR. The role of dietary protein in optimizing muscle mass, function and health outcomes in older individuals. Br J Nutr. 2012 Aug

Categories
Healthy Lifestyle Habits

How Working From Home Could Be Saving Your Feet, Back and Posture.

How Working From Home Could Be Saving Your Feet, Back and Posture

A lot of corporate jobs either require or expect women to wear high heels as part of their professional look. Even  other industries women may feel obliged to wear them on a day to day basis, but is this good for our health?

A few hours wearing heels on a night out isn’t likely to contribute to long term niggles, but wearing heels for a  considerable amount of time for normal working hours obviously takes up a good chunk of your week.

So really, work from home life could be benefitting your health more than you think for the simple fact that you can wear what you want, as long as it’s out of shot during your video call anyway.

Let’s look at the research…

How if affects the body

Long term high heel wearing causes major changes in the functionality of the feet, ankle and knee joints as well as the lower back. An increase in height of the heel also forces the foot into an exaggerated pointed position which in turn increases knee flexion and lordosis of the lower back (1).

As well as affecting the lower back and lower limbs, one study also shown significant affects on the shoulders and upper back (2).

It’s also detrimental in adolescents as they’re still growing. It can cause postural disorders, where the head is unusually far forwards as well as lumbar hyperlordosis, pelvic anteversion, and knee valgus (3).

It does depend on heel height

In one study, the majority of females that took part preferred wearing heels that were at least 3 inches high and over half of them suffered with lower back pain and discomfort. From the entire study, a considerable increase in muscular fatigue was noticeable when the heel was higher than just 6 cm (2 inches). Higher heels cause the body to tense to improve balance, causing muscular fatigue and pain in the back, shoulders and neck (4).

In the adolescent study, it was observed that the height and width of the heel are the prime characteristics that were the most influencial in affecting posture and imbalance (3).

Lower, blocky heels are considerably less likely to affect your body. Lucky for us, that’s what’s actually in fashion at the moment! So this style is readily available.

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What about other types of high heels?

Shoes with a high heel that aren’t your typical high heel shoe, (shoes that have a high wedge for example), can actually cause the same amount of damange as a traditional high heel shoe. But, the advantage that this type of shoe offers is that is applies greater stability to the ankle joint (3).

The same is likely to apply to high heel boots as it covers the foot in it’s entirety as well as supports the ankle.

But faltforms are the absolute winner as one study explains that “footwear that has a heel size that is equal or close to the height of the forefoot does not cause horizontal imbalance of the sole and, therefore, will not affect the biomechanical alignment of the ankles, functioning similarly to the shoes without heels” (3).

Excuse me while I invest in loads of flatforms for this summer!

What can you do if you don't want to part with your heels?

Of course, I’m not saying you should just go ahead and throw out your high heels. I’d just suggest wearing them in moderation. 

Also, the use of a full inner sole actually alters the biomechanics and therefore improves the comfort and functionality of high heel shoes (4).

But when you don’t need to be wearing them, i.e. at your desk, swap them out for a flatter supportive shoe and give your feet a rest.

I’d also recommend toe spreaders to correct the restriction that high heels apply to your toes. Any structured smart shoe can affect the toe area of the feet and cause bunions, so toe spreaders should be worn for a few hours to try to counteract bunions from getting worse. (Of course, if they are too far gone, then surgery is the only corrective option!)

Key Takeaways

  • Wear flatter shoes when possible, that preferably have a wider toe box to allow more room for a natural foot shape.
  • Consider just wearing high heels for special occasions or certain work related meetings rather than all the time.
  • Look after your foot health by walking barefoot at home when possible and spread the toes.

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References

1 – Wiedemeijer MM, Otten E. Effects of high heeled shoes on gait. A review. Gait Posture. 2018 Mar

2 – Malick WH, Khalid H, Mehmood Z, Hussain H. Association of musculoskeletal discomfort with the use of high heeled shoes in females. J Pak Med Assoc. 2020 Dec

3 – Silva AM, de Siqueira GR, da Silva GA. Implications of high-heeled shoes on body posture of adolescents. Rev Paul Pediatr. 2013 Jun

4 – Hong WH, Lee YH, Chen HC, Pei YC, Wu CY. Influence of heel height and shoe insert on comfort perception and biomechanical performance of young female adults during walking. Foot Ankle Int. 2005 Dec

Categories
Diet & Nutrition

6 Ways to Create a Healthier Relationship With Food

6 Ways to Create a Healthier Relationship With Food

Loads of people come to me to lose weight or just generally be healthier and more mindful about their food choices. But one of my biggest goals is to get clients to have a better relationship with food!

I’m all for having the option of manipulating your diet to be in line with your goals, but this should never happen at the expense of your health. By building healthy eating habits (in a balanced way!) you can improve your relationship with food AND achieve your goals.

Healthy Eating in 6 Easy Steps

These are my go to tips to make sure that you have the best chance of creating healthier and more balanced ways of thinking about food.

Step 1 - Avoid treating foods as good vs. bad

Food is food. There are certain things that are higher in calories and less nutrient dense BUT eating these things does not make you ‘bad’ or ‘naughty’. 

Step 2 - There's no need to cut out food groups!

You don’t need to cut out carbs or fats to be healthier or lose weight. There’s just no need. 

It’s restrictive and if you enjoy those things, you’ll feel like you’re missing out. 

Step 3 - Learn how to relate to the hunger scale

Once you start eating when you’re hungry and stop eating when you’re full, you’ll feel like you’re in so much control of your diet and body whilst giving it what it needs. 

healthy eating hunger scale
Healthy eating hunger scale

Step 4 - Make sure you're eating enough

Unfortunately, a lot of people who are used to ‘healthy eating’ or have experienced various types of dieting are under the impression that you need to eat very little to be healthy or lose weight. You don’t! 

You shouldn’t be in such a large deficit, it’s not good for you, mentally or physically.

Step 5 - Don't be overly restrictive with your favourite foods

Just because you’re trying to be healthy doesn’t mean you can never have things like pizza or chocolate. If you get to know how to structure your diet properly, you’ll learn how to factor in these things. Yes, even if you’re in a calorie deficit.

Step 6 - Remember that food is fuel for the body!

As well as needing food to surivive, you need food to thrive! If you want to think clearly, feel good, be your best self and smash your workouts – you need a good balanced diet. 

Healthy Eating Made Easy

Follow my tips below and download or pin this infographic to your healthy eating pinterest board, so you can refer to it at any time!

Your tasks for building a better relationship with food!

  • Consider which factors you identify with and see how you could work on that problem – dig deep!
  • You might benefit from joining a nutrition programme, such a my 90 day nutrition club, so you can work on your healthy eating habits once and for all.
  • However, if there are some serious problems that you need to work through please seek professional help for your eating habits.

Don't know where to start?

Download my Healthy Lifestyle Swipe File that will give you a full run down of quick actionable steps that you can take to live a healthier life!

Healthy Eating Tips

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