Category Archives: Exercise

I Was Forced Out Of My Comfort Zone Today… I Think I Loved It!

HELLO!!!!!!

I’m not even sure why I’m so energetic considering that I SPRINTED in today’s workout! I’m sure you’ve noticed I hardly ever talk about running on here. I have shared tips on starting a running routine (Read Part I and Part II) but I don’t run anymore.
I used to run years ago but mainly for exercise and to keep challenging myself. I stopped about 3 year ago when I discovered other things I actually enjoyed.

Today’s Fitter London workout started with 30+mins of running. We jogged for 5 minutes then did what felt like a million sets of 20s and 10s sprints, with rest in between each set. We finished off with a relay, which brought out my very competitive side… LMAO, I might have cheated while overtaking someone

I’ll be honest I do love a good sprint but for just one set of 10 seconds, or something! Today’s session took me WAY OUT OF my comfort zone, and after the sprints we jogged back to the gym and finished with 4 sets each of 6 reps of heavy kettlebell shoulder presses, dead cleans and rows. Heavy lifting, LOVE IT!

And guess who’s teaching a spin class in less than 2 hours…. ME! (I’m going to sleep so well tonight!).

Nothing gets you fitter like constantly challenging & shocking your body! Why don’t you try something different (and challenging, of course!) today? And when you do, tell me about it :)

Have a great day!

New Week, New Video… Of A Workout For Change!

Hello!

I hope you had a great weekend – it was SUNNY here in London. At one point, I literally RAN away from the sun and into the comfort of my home… like a vampire, ha!

I know I’m Nigerian, I know I grew up in the sun but it doesn’t mean I love it 24/7. I like the warmth from the sun but not the heat on my skin, which always results in me being multi-toned – darker face, dark arms, less dark torso and slightly dark legs, no thanks! If you’ve been reading this blog for long enough, I’m sure you can tell no weather in the UK ever makes me happy :p

Do you know I’m a kettlebell instructor? Yep! I teach kettlebell classes for Fitter London, and after having over a month away from them – thanks to my holiday and ‘Insanity: The Asylum’, I almost hugged them when I got back!

Two Saturdays ago, I taught both classes so I didn’t get to workout so I decided to play with some kettlebells and decided to share with you so you can give it a try soon :)

As always, you need to warm up and mobilise your joints before doing this, or any workout.

Five repititions of these four exercises, back-to-back:

  1. Kettlebells swings – I used two bells here but one bell is just as effective (single arm swings)
  2. Kettlebell swing-cleans – Again, one bell for single bell cleans works just fine
  3. Ketllbells military (shoulder) presses
  4. Kettlebell racked (front) squats
Rest for 1-2 minutes and repeat at least 3 times.

What does this work, I hear you ask? Everything!

It’s a great strength AND endurance workout – going heavy and not resting between exercises will give maximum results. The swings work your hamstrings, glutes (butt) and core. The cleans do the same PLUS the back and shoulders. The shoulder presses work the… shoulders, of course! And the squats mainly target the glutes, quads (thighs) and core, also your shoulders as you have to keep the bells up.

So yes, it’s a total body workout :) Why don’t you give it a try? Watch this video a few times before trying the exercises, and as safety is important – start light. If you try it, please comment below or on the video (YouTube).

Someone’s commented on the video already:
“Thank you, I just did that with 10kg weights why am I burning in my shoulders and glutes lol. :) thanks for a “rest day” workout“ 

What Did You Do On Your Birthday?

Insanity: The Asylum’s “Gameday Overtime”!

Yes, that’s exactly what I did on my birthday. I’m on Day 25 of the 30 day program, I didn’t want to break my consistent streak just because it was my birthday!

Just in case I haven’t mentioned it here (I have on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram), I started Insanity: The Asylum while I was on holiday for 3 weeks. I initially intended to do it for 21 days, instead of the recommended 30 days. But thanks to a group I’m a member of, I was motivated to complete the program.

I’ll do a complete review when I’m done. As for Insanity, the original 60 day program, maybe if Beachbody need someone (me!) to review it… because I don’t see myself doing that anytime soon. You never know, I could get a fantastic opportunity to work on an Island for a few months ;) That’d be the perfect time to do a 60 day program.

So here’s a collage of a few things Insanity: The Asylum had to offer today:

I’m almost back to regular posting, I arrived in London on Monday and I’m still getting used to the timezone. Have a great weekend!

If you’re interested in seeing all the pictures from my time on/in(??) ‘The Asylum’, they’re all here –> http://pinterest.com/adura/get-ripped/

Yummy Post Workout Meal: Plantain & Eggs

Hello,
Anybody out there?!?!

I’m so sorry for the silence on my blog but I was on holiday. I just got back yesterday and I have a LOT of blog posts coming… so stay around!

I had some drama at the airport on my way back, my flight to my connecting airport was delayed by almost an hour. I had 30 minutes to make my next flight, I was so sure I’d missed it that I strolled to the gate. Only to find out that the staff were JUST about to send someone else in my place.

So – I made my flight but my luggage didn’t! Lucky for me, there was a flight an hour after mine, I got my bags after an hour’s wait at the airport. I wasn’t too stressed out because it gave me time to finally update Week 2 of The Get Trimmer Challenge.

Anyway enough about me, I seem to talk about myself a lot, right? :p
Today was my first day back at work, I was at this morning’s Fitter London class – only to help out! I couldn’t have done a heavy strength session, I was exhausted. At lunchtime, I taught my first spin class in 4 weeks and I was really expecting it to be too hard for me, I loved every minute of it – it’s good to be back teaching :)
After the class, I made some pan fried ‘dodo’ (Nigerian name for fried plantains) and scrambled eggs (seasoned with parsley, chives and a pinch of salt), which is a great combination of good carbohydrates and protein. It hit the spot and I was able to get some more work done before my evening class.

Why is plantain a good carb? It’s a ‘slow-release’ carb, which means it releases sugar (energy) slowly into the system. I pan fried it in a tablespoon of coconut oil, which has many health benefits and my favourite thing to eat with plantain = eggs. They’re a great source of protein and just work perfectly with plantain. 

I posted a video on how I pan fry plantains some time last year, check it out:

See ya!

As One Challenge Ends, Another One Is Set To Begin.

If you follow me on Instagram (@adura_o), your timeline should have been bombarded with daily posts from me in plank position.
The reason is explained in “I’m Challenging Myself…” but if you can’t be bothered to click on the link, here’s a summary of what I did for 28 days:

1. 2 minutes of plank, daily.
2. 2 strength sessions, weekly.
3. Yoga 1-2 times, weekly.
4. Eating clean – Processed sugar free and low sugar.
- Completely treat free.
5. Cutting down carbs, except on workout days. Examples of carbs allowed: plantain, sweet potatoes and quinoa.
6. I teach 3 spin classes a week, that covered my cardio and HIIT.

I LOVED IT! Cutting out treats was a challenge for the first week, but after that – it was just fine. When I had cravings (e.g. time of the month), I just had bigger portions of carbs and that always helped. One day, I had roasted sweet potatoes and plantains!

RESULTS: Although, the change isn’t drastic, I see I’ve definitely lost some fat and even better, I feel GREAT!

The moral of the story is: Nothing Is Impossible. Stop making excuses, “Ahhh, I can’t NOT eat bread or biscuits, etc”. You can if you put your mind to it. I always tell people – If I can do it, anybody can.

It’s good to challenge yourself often, to keep you motivated and always on your toes. I’ve found myself relaxing back into bad habits, and this challenge has helped me get back on track.
My treats will be 0-1 weekly now. And I will continue with the daily planks :)

I have another personal challenge, which will start in a couple of days but enough about me!!

Speaking of challenges ending and beginning, Get Trimmer 4 JUST ended on Sunday 2nd June. The next one, GT5,  starts on Monday 17th June and a few spots are already gone! Sign up now to get the early bird offer.

I’ve had a few questions about alternative payment methods, send me an email and I’ll send you details —> email @ GetTrimmerChallenge.com.

I have a few weeks off work so I will be recording videos and blogging more often :)

I’m Challenging Myself…

…and you, maybe?

I’m very proud of myself – after months of feeling stuck in a rut, I did my #CleanNineteen challenge in March. At the end of the 19 days, I felt more like myself than I had in ages, it almost felt like I had reset my attitude to my diet – I needed it!

So, to continue to motivate myself, and others I hope, I set myself another challenge for the month of May. It doesn’t matter what your starting point is, it’s the progress and results you get at the end that matter.

I’ve used the #GetRippedWithAdura on Instagram hashtag because the other one I wanted to use had already been used for something else.

My starting picture is here: http://instagram.com/p/Y5dQl0ADW-/

Goal: More definition in my abs – to see a significant change in my abs/mid-section

How?
1. Doing 2 minutes of plank daily.
2. Doing 2 strength sessions a week
3. Doing Yoga 1-2 times a week.
4. Eating clean
- Processed sugar free and low sugar.
- Completely treat free, especially during the 1st two weeks. And the option to have one treat per week during weeks 3 and 4 (but I plan not to).  By treats, I mean foods with processed sugar (cakes, ice-cream, etc)
- Cutting down carbs, except on workout days. Examples of carbs allowed are: plantain, sweet potatoes, brown beans and quinoa.

If you’re interested in following my progress or you want to join me on this challenge, follow me on Instagram: @Adura_O, where I’ll be posting daily updates on anything from my planks to the meals I eat. If you’re on Pinterest, I’m also posting daily updates —> http://pinterest.com/adura/get-ripped-with-me/

I started yesterday:


Please be aware this will not have the same structured approach and direction as the Get Trimmer Challenge. If you want weekly plans, tips, a forum and regular support, sign up for the next Get Trimmer Challenge HERE (starts on the 17th of June).

Sunday Stretching Pledge: Week 3

I’m still keeping up with #YogaEverySunday :)

Today’s session was just over an hour long. It was very challenging and I will revisit that video very often.

Thanks to Susan of Eights & Weights, I am now a fan of Do Yoga With Me and today’s yoga session was:

And just a little something for you to laugh at… Just when I was getting confident with my flexibility and yoga progress, THIS happened:

  

If nothing at all, I’m showing you a creative way to grab your own butt. But watch this space, give me a couple of months, I’ll post a picture of me doing it with ease, palms flat on my lower back ;)
*sigh*
PLEASE NOTE: Attend a yoga class or book a 1 to 1 session with a qualified yoga instructor, if you’ve never done yoga before. DVDs and YouTube videos are more suitable for those comfortable with yoga.

Sunday Stretching Pledge: Week 2

Another Sunday, another yoga session today :) I did a 30 minute intermediate yoga routine from YouTube. I followed that with some back-bending, as seen in the wheel pose below.

Only try this if:
1. You’re comfortable with the wheel/bridge pose
2. You’ve warmed up your back and arms (downward/upward dogs, child pose, etc)
3. Ideally, it’s best to do it in the presence of a yoga instructor

So don’t be too hasty too try this, as my friend Teemz says, “Be kiafu”, like she’s joking! Interpretation: Be careful ;)

Read more about the wheel pose here: http://www.yogajournal.com/poses/473

If you want to keep up with My Stretching Pledge, follow me on Instagram (@Adura_O) and look for the #YogaEverySunday hashtag. If you want to join me on this pledge, post pictures and tag accordingly :)

I posted the below (inspired by the picture above) on Facebook and decided to share here too:

Just a little motivation/encouragement here :)

Years ago, the most I could run was 200m (I was a sprinter (100 + 200m) in secondary school but after I moved to the UK, I gained weight. I eventually lost all the weight but still couldn’t run for more than 2 minutes).
In 2004 (or ’05), I signed up for a 5km race, trained for that and ended up running a few 5KMs, 10KMs and 2 half marathons over a few years. All thanks to training and hard work :) 


 Same goes for my flexibility – I could barely touch my toes a couple of years ago but again, through hard work and practice, my flexibility has improved ten-fold.
It still tickles to hear people refer to me as ‘flexible’!

 So keep working hard, focus on your goals and you’ll reach and exceed them!

 Have a great week ahead!

Three Push-Up Variations

I posted this picture on IG and decided to post it here too, why leave you out? :)
(My Instagram: http://instagram.com/adura_o / @Adura_O)

It was captioned:
“Pushup progression. Try this when you’re comfortable with regular pushups.
 I LOVE strength training :) :)
#bodyweight #homeworkout #pushup #strongisthenewskinny #strength #workout #igfitness #instafitness #instafit #igfit #personaltrainer #London #fitness”

So, as I stated above, only try this if you’re comfortable with pushups, which I’ve explained below:

Always warm up (5 minutes) before doing any exercise, especially the muscles (and joints) that will be used in the exercise.

Try this (for e.g. after a 30 minute interval training session (running, cycling):

5 pressups

Rest (15 seconds)

10 pressups
Rest (30 seconds)

Repeat 3 times.

Would you like to see more workout posts? Please let me know.

My Workout Routine (REQUESTED)

A workout routine should be about balance.

Going through mine below, you’ll see there’s one thing that I currently am not doing enough of.

You should aim for a good mix of:
Strength/Weights: Read this post on Why I Love Strength Training HERE
Cardio/Endurance: Read this post on How To Add Variation To Your Cardio Training HERE
Stretch/Flexibility: Read this post on Vinyasa Flow Yoga HERE

What’s also important in a workout routine is variation and progression. A session shouldn’t be easy – you should always challenge yourself to see results. 

Including variety and progress is different depending on what form of training you’re doing:

  •  If it’s a yoga session, you should always ease into your poses/stretches (each session, challenge yourself by slowly going deeper/further than before, using your breathing for assistance) and not force your body into positions to avoid injury.
  • A strength session is completely different, nothing should be easy or relaxing. You keep challenging yourself by increasing resistance/weight, when you get comfortable. Same for a cardio/endurance session. 
My Current* Routine
*’Current’ because it’s not set in stone. I can, and will, change it anytime. I plan to cut down my spin classes to two per week.
MONDAY - Rest

TUESDAY
Morning: Fitter London Kettlebells for Strength & Bodyweight Conditioning*
Strength Session 1 & Endurance
This is one of my two favourite classes of the week. I’m naturally strong so of course I love strength training. My endurance and core strength, which aren’t so great, have required a lot of work and slowly improved over timeI’m a Fitter London instructor but I don’t teach this class and I happily attend it every week – love it! This class is great for building your strength through weights and bodyweight, and also your endurance as we sometimes have some long cycles with little rest.
Afternoon: Spin
Cardio/Endurance Session 1
I’m a spin instructor and I teach this class on the bike. All three spin classes in my routine are my classes so of course they’re highly effective ;)

WEDNESDAY
Morning: Fitter London Spin
Cardio/Endurance Session 2

THURSDAY
Evening: Spin 
Cardio/Endurance Session 3

FRIDAY – Rest

SATURDAY

Midday: Fitter London Kettlebells for Strength Size & A Sixpack
Strength Session 2
This class is more strength focused , compared to Tuesday, with hardly any cardio drills. The most cardio drills we’ve done in this class are kettlebell swings (with heavy bells!). Don’t be alarmed by the name, I haven’t built any size – I’m a woman! But I’m definitely stronger and my faint fourpack is thankful for this class.


SUNDAY
– Rest
Although my routine looks the same each week, no session is ever the same (variation!). The Fitter London classes are always different and the same goes for my spin classes – to keep everyone challenged. I aim to push myself harder than the week before for gradual progress.
As you can see, I’m missing a VERY important component of my workout routine – Strength/Flexibility! Although I warm up (& mobilise my joints) before workouts and cool down (& stretch) after, it’s important that I dedicate 30 minutes to an hour twice a week to focus on flexibility and stretching.  This can easily be covered by a yoga class or a session on my own.

Writing this post has reminded and inspired me – I have to get back into my Sunday yogaish routine and I will be checking in on Instagram from this weekend. I’ll also try to attend yoga classes when I can. 

What’s your workout schedule like? Share in the comments section and let me know if you have any questions.