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Daily Archives: November 22, 2016

Dynamic warm up routine

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Warm up your muscles with September cover model Alexa Towersey’s favourite warm up sequence.

 

Alexa always incorporates a structured dynamic warm-up before every training session. It’s the perfect opportunity to prime the nervous system and prepare the muscles, reinforce correct movement patterns and identify and address any structural imbalances or weaknesses. Learning how to switch ‘off’ the wrong muscles, and switch on the ‘right’ muscles, for the workout to come is the key to making your workouts more efficient and effective.

HOT TIP

 

If your hip flexors are tight, they can inhibit the glutes from firing, so you need to include a dynamic warm-up that focuses on opening up the hips first and then isolating and activating the glutes.

Overhead Reverse Lunge x 10

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Step back into a reverse lunge, bringing the knee down to graze the ground as you reach your arms up and out of your hips towards the ceiling. Emphasise driving the pelvis underneath you to create length along the front of the hip. Alternate legs.

Photographer: James Seneviratne (@jamesjoel)

Dressed in: P.E. Nation

Shot at: F45 Bondi

 

 

 

 

 

Band-resisted lateral monster walk x 20 each way

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Place the band under your mid foot, cross it over and bring it up around the front of your shoulders. Feet are hip-distance apart with hip, knee and second toe lined up. Without compensating with the upper body, exaggerate a step to the side – essentially stepping with one foot and resisting with the other. You can perform variations with feet facing forwards, turned out and turned in to make sure you hit the glutes from all angles.

Photographer: James Seneviratne (@jamesjoel)

Dressed in: P.E. Nation

Shot at: F45 Bondi

 

 

 

 

Single-leg glute bridge x 15 each leg

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Set your heels up in line with your sit bones, having the hip, knee, second toe in alignment – you should be able to touch your heels with your fingertips. Pull one knee into the chest, drawing the thigh towards the ribs. Hold it tight as you drive the hips up towards the ceiling, pushing the heel of your foot through the ground. The knee drawn in helps to disengage the lower back, allowing you to isolate the glutes.

Photographer: James Seneviratne (@jamesjoel)

Dressed in: P.E. Nation

Shot at: F45 Bondi

 

 

Check out Alexa’s top three training tips here.

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Also check out http://healthywithjodi.com

Crank up your core strength with plank variations

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Boost your results with these plank variations by Holly Barker.

 

Side plank with knee touch

 

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Elevate your side plank by dropping your top elbow and raising your top knee towards each other. Perform 10 reaches per side, holding at the crunch and coming back to side plank each time.

 

 

 

Basic plank with mountain climber

 

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Elevate the basic plank by dropping your body down to a push-up position, elbows bent, and reaching one knee towards the same side elbow. Repeat one side after the other. Perform 10 touches per side with quick switches from side to side.

 

 

 

Looking for more ab workouts? Grab a bench and try these workouts.

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Spending Money on Experiences Makes You a Better Person 

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You’ve probably heard about the health benefits of practicing gratitude—how it can boost your mood, help you treat others better, improve physical health, and keep stress and fear at bay. Now, here’s a little trick for how to automatically infuse more gratitude into your life: Spend more money on experiences, and less on material objects.

“Think about how you feel when you come home from buying something new,” Thomas Gilovich, Ph.D., professor of psychology at Cornell University and co-author a new study on gratitude, said in a press release. “You might say, ‘this new couch is cool,’ but you're less likely to say ‘I’m so grateful for that set of shelves.’”

“But when you come home from a vacation, you are likely to say, ‘I feel so blessed I got to go,’” he continued. “People say positive things ab­­­­out the stuff they bought, but they don't usually express gratitude for it—or they don't express it as often as they do for their experiences.”

Gilovich’s new study shows that people not only express more gratitude about events and experiences than they do about objects; it also found that this kind of gratitude results in more generous behavior toward others.

To examine these patterns, Gilovich and his colleagues looked at 1,200 online customer reviews—half for purchases made for the sake of doing (like restaurant meals, show tickets, or vacations), and half for purchase made for the sake of having (like furniture, jewelry, and clothing). They weren’t surprised to find that reviewers were more likely to bring up gratitude in posts about the former than the latter.

“People tend to be more inspired to comment on their feelings of gratitude when they reflect on the trips they took, the venues they visited, or the meals they ate than when they reflect on the gadgets, furniture, or clothes they bought,” the authors wrote in the journal Emotion.

First author Jesse Walker, a psychology graduate student at Cornell, says that experiential purchases may elicit more gratitude because they don’t trigger as many social comparisons as material possessions do. In other words, experiences may foster an appreciation of one’s own circumstances, rather than feelings of falling short or trying to measure up to someone else’s.

The researchers also performed several experiments with either college students or adults recruited from an online database. In one experiment, 297 participants were asked to think about a recent purchase over $100, either experiential and material. When asked how grateful they were for that purchase on a scale of 1 to 9, the experiential group reported higher scores (an average of 7.36) than the material-possessions group (average 6.91).

In a similar experiment, participants also said that the experiential purchase made them happier than the material one, and represented money better spent—findings that echo previous research on this topic.

Finally, the researchers performed two exercises to determine how purchase-related gratitude might affect how people behave toward others. In both, participants were asked to think for a few minutes about a meaningful purchase, either experiential or material. A few minutes later, they were given a seemingly unrelated task of dividing $10 between themselves and an anonymous recipient.

Which group was more charitable? Those who had been tasked with remembering an experience or event gave away about $1 to $2 more, on average, than the material group.

Co-author Amit Kumar, Ph.D., a researcher at the University of Chicago, says that this link between gratitude and altruistic behavior “suggests that the benefits of experiential consumption apply not only to the consumers of those purchases themselves, but to others in their orbit as well.”

These findings can certainly apply to individuals looking to be more grateful in their everyday lives, Gilovich says, but they may have implications for communities and governments, as well.

"If public policy encouraged people to consume experiences rather than spending money on things, it would increase their gratitude and happiness and make them more generous as well," he says. Funding organizations that provide these experiences—such as public parks, museums and performance spaces—could be a good start, he adds.

If you’re looking to express more gratitude as you spend time with family, shop for gifts, and juggle your packed schedule this upcoming holiday season, you can keep the researchers’ advice in mind.

“All one needs to do is spend a little less on material goods and a little more on experiences,” the wrote in their paper. “In addition to enhancing gratitude, experiential consumption may also increase the likelihood that people will cooperate and show kindness to each other.”

 

This article originally appeared on RealSimple.com.

Also check out http://healthywithjodi.com

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Easy Things You Can Do Tonight For a Healthier Tomorrow

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Whether you feel like you fell off the horse throughout today or you’re motivated and ready to make tomorrow a day that your body will thank you for, there’s a lot of small things that you can do right now to gear up. The key to staying on track is not so much about mental toughness or strictness and more about planning ahead and being prepared. Knock out these small tasks tonight and you’ll be on the path for a better tomorrow.

Pack a Lunch

Not only is this sure to save you money, you’ll most likely save big on calories, too. Whip up a stir fry or a grain bowl that you can reheat, or pack a hearty salad (greens on top so they don’t get soggy!) with a light homemade vinaigrette. Other great options would be an egg salad or turkey sandwich on your favorite whole wheat bread with an apple or yogurt on the side.

Have a Cup of Tea

Skip a heavy dessert and any late night eating, and wind down your day with a hot, cozy cup of (ideally decaffeinated) tea. Doctor it up with a little honey, cinnamon, nutmeg, a splash of milk, or squeeze of lemon juice. You could even make your own Chai tea mix. Not only is this a great beverage for your immune system, but it’s the perfect hydrating drink before bedtime.

Portion Out Snacks

Remember, being prepared is the name of the game, so don’t wait until the last minute to realize that you’re starving and need something ASAP. That’s usually when you’re most likely to fall off track. Keep a bag of almonds, a piece of fruit, homemade energy bars, whole wheat crackers, or a bag of carrots on hand in case you come down with a bad case of the munchies.

Get Breakfast Ready

Whether it’s hard-boiling some eggs, making muffins, prepping a bowl of overnight oats, or lining up mini egg breakfast cups, take some time to make sure that you’ll have a well-balanced breakfast that you can fit into your morning routine. Extra bonus points if it’s a breakfast you’re looking forward to. Nothing adds a little extra motivation to get out of bed than a yummy breakfast waiting for you.

Eat a Balanced Dinner, and Eat it Slowly

Just because you may feel like you’ve eaten unhealthily or consumed too many calories today, skipping your last meal doesn’t necessarily reconcile this. Instead, eat a well-rounded meal with a lean protein, some healthy fats, and plenty of vegetables. Eat it nice and slowly to create a feeling of satiation. This way, you’ll wake up tomorrow morning feeling fueled and ready to go.

Drink a Glass of Water

This one almost requires no justification. A hydrated body is a happy one, and as a bonus, one extra glass of water before bed time can be great for your skin.

Start a Food Journal

Writing down what you’ve eaten that day is a great exercise for most people to have a reflective look at the foods they have consumed. This helps in holding yourself accountable, and also setting new goals to make changes in your diet.

Set the Alarm Clock One Hour Earlier

Channel some of your motivation into a power workout tomorrow morning before class or work. Starting your day with some physical activity is a great way to rev up your metabolism, release some endorphins, and get you in a focused, rejuvenated mindset for the day to come.

Don’t Sweat Today

The good thing about falling off track is that there’s always tomorrow to get back to your routine and start fresh. Making lifestyle changes doesn’t happen overnight, and sometimes there will be days where you have no other option but to roll with the punches. Take it day by day, and regardless of how you feel about today, tomorrow is the perfect opportunity to lead the healthy, happy lifestyle you are reaching for.

This article originally appeared on CookingLight.com.

Also check out http://healthywithjodi.com

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