Category Archives: Reader Questions

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.

Tilapia with Efo

Oh food, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways 😉

Okay seriously, I have a bit of a sore throat and I’m a little tired so I needed to make something easy, yummy and hot (I promise I’m talking about food here!).

Before I go into the recipe, I have to say I try to make preparations for my meals in advance. Even if I don’t know exactly what I’m making yet.

E.g. I bought 2 bunches of spinach and some tilapia on Monday. By Tuesday, I knew I wanted to cook the tilapia on Wednesday so… I washed, picked and chopped the spinach and stored it in the fridge. I cleaned/washed the fish and seasoned it. Again I stored it in the fridge. When I woke up feeling a little rough, I knew exactly what I was going to cook and as most of the preparation was already done, it didn’t take long to cook AT ALL.


Ingredients
2 x Whole Tilapia (sliced)
1 Onion
1 cup of Passata
2 tbsp Coconut Oil
2 x Spinach Bunches
Seasonings – Ginger, Parsley, Mixed Herbs and Salt
Chilli

Tilapia with Efo

  1. Wash and chop the spinach.
  2. Clean/Wash the Tilapia and season (salt, ginger and parsley).
  3. Chop the onion
  4. Add the oil to a pot and allow it heat up. Add the onions.
  5. Once onions are nicely caramelised, add the passata and reduce heat to medium. Season with salt and herbs. Cook for 5 minutes.
  6. Add the spinach and stir contents of pot together.
  7. Add the fish almost immediately, I always add my fish flat (to make sure one entire side of each piece is flat on the surface of the pot or stew)
  8. Cover pot and leave to cook for 15 minutes (maximum).
  9. Serve and Enjoy 🙂
YUM!
Serving Suggestions
  • You can eat it on its own, which is what I did.
  • With baked sweet potatoes, which is what I’m doing tomorrow 😉
  • Boiled or Pan Fried Plantain
  • 1-2 (1/2 inch) slices of yam
  • The list goes on and on and on

Reader Question: Fruit Juice

Hi, is it okay to count fruit juice as a portion of fruit?

The straightforward answer is No.

“I eat very healthy, I drink a lot of juice”
“I’m going on a fruit-only diet, I have to lose a lot of weight in 2 weeks”

Sorry but this is most likely not the case, healthy? Only if you’re having the right portions of 100% fruit juice. Before you have another enormous glass of juice, here are a couple of things to be on the lookout for:
Is it made from 100% fruit?
no additives, no “made from concentrate” no extra sugar.

are you having a small glass or do you plan to have a couple?

Reader’s Questions: Dealing with Cravings

Question: When I see fattening food, it’s hard to resist. How do I fight that??

Welcome to my world – I’ve dealt with this dilemma for years!

The easiest (and annoyingly obvious) answer is to stay away from fatty foods. As you know, that’s easier said than done.

But once you form healthier eating habits, everything seems to fall into place. This doesn’t mean life’s perfect and the thought of eating anything unhealthy never crosses your mind but you find it to be less challenging.

Tips on dealing with cravings:

  • Plan your meals in advance – A lot of people say they don’t have time to do this but you have to make time for something that’s important to you. Cook for the week on Sundays, decide where you’ll have lunch during the week, always go for the healthier options in the canteen at work, have fruit and nuts at your desk at work, there are so many things you can do to make healthy eating easier 🙂
  • Avoid fast food restaurants – I won’t call out any companies but you know them 😉
    Aim for sit down meals BUT If you HAVE to eat ‘fast food’, opt for grilled chicken with salads, burgers without buns and dressing on the side.
    Eg
    Nandos (UK) – 1/4 or half chicken with mixed salad, sweetcorn, ratatouille or mushy peas… yum! Burgers without the buns, wraps without the creamy dressing (eg. mayo)
    http://www.nandos.co.uk/themenu
    Barcelos (Nigeria) – flame grilled chicken with garden salad or a pita with no dressing or order a burger without the bun.
    Jimmy Johns (USA) – My sister took me here over my Xmas break, I had an unwich and I loved it! An unwich is a sandwich/wrap without the bread. The usual contents of a sandwich are wrapped in lettuce leaves… loved it! Yet another reason I want to live in the States! Check out their website here —>  http://www.jimmyjohns.com/
  • Avoid getting to the point where you feel you’re ‘starving’ – This is when you usually crave a quick sugar fix so make sure your meals are regular and filling. Remember protein is very filling so you can double you serving of fish, meat or chicken. Also bulk up meals with veggies.
  • Sweet Tooth? – Pacify this with sugar free chewing gum, a serving (small) of sweet fruit eg grapes, apples, strawberries, pineapples or dark (70+ %) chocolate. Dark chocolate contains much less sugar than regular chocolates
  • Don’t deprive yourself completely – What’s worked for me, and a lot of people I know, is to eat healthy 5-6 days a week and relax 1-2 days. On your ‘treat’ days, do not overdo it. Just because you haven’t had pizza for 5 days, doesn’t mean you should inhale a large pizza in one go 😉
    Doing everything in moderation is key.
If you have any questions, as always please ask. 🙂

Photo Credit: Scientific American

Reader’s Question: Zumba

Hello Adura, Doing Zumba 4 times a week is it enough exercise to lose weight?

Attending Zumba classes more than 3 times a week is really good to begin with BUT

  • Like most exercise routines, when your body gets used to it, you start to reach a plateau. This means you won’t see the same results you saw at the beginning. This is because initially you’re shocking your body with exercise but if you don’t vary your workouts, you won’t see constant significant results.
Zumba is solely a cardio based class but it is a very fun way to get your exercise so definitely keep attending the classes 🙂

I’d suggest attending 2-3 classes a week and at least one (preferably two) strength based session (Read this post: ‘I Love Strength Training’) every week. If you’re in London, why don’t you try out a Fitter London class? Your first class is FREE. Check out the Fitter London timetable: www.fitterlondon.co.uk/classes/

Your goal with exercise should be to constantly shock your body so it doesn’t get the chance to know what’s coming next. With strength training, as you get stronger you can increase your weights, repititions or sets.
Good Luck 🙂

Check out this Zumba Review by Ogo