May 3rd 2018
I have been a fitness fanatic for a couple of years now. I really just see how much it changes not just my body but more importantly my mind - it makes me feel happy, energised and more productive in other areas in my life. I find it hard to be super strict with my diet as I love food and I try not to deprive myself of anything as I am a firm believer that life is for living! At the same time though, you have to respect your body and treat it well. One thing I try to always do though, even if I haven't been eating a little bit more indulgently than usual, is keep my body moving. I am a huge fan of classes as I find them more fun - the energy makes me work harder plus, I love to change up my routine all the time so that I never get bored and my body doesn’t get too used to one thing.
Here’s my week in fitness!
Last night, I went for an Italian at one of my new favourite restaurants La Famiglia (truffle pasta, potatoes, tiramisu and wine) so this week I wanted to feel the burn! I kicked this off by trying out a new class at ONE LDN called Hip Hop Hot Yoga. I love hot yoga because it allows me to stretch and push myself further than in normal yoga classes and I also love the feeling of having a good sweat – it makes me feel so energised afterwards (and I’m convinced it means I’m sweating out all the weekend cocktails!). I usually go to Ethos in Spitalfields Market, which is my absolute favourite place to go – it smells great (a rarity for hot yoga studios), is beautifully lit and the teaching is superb. However today I was intrigued by the Hip Hop Hot Yoga class - it sounded like fun and I love trying new things - it keeps the love of exercise alive! It was a great class with a Vinyasa Flow to it rather than your usual 26 postures and I would definitely go back. I wore Varley hot yoga pants with a matching top.
The sun was shining today so I walked everywhere and racked up just over 18,828 steps (I have an app called Stepz on my phone that I use to track this) and apparently that burned over 600 calories! I feel like walking is such an underrated exercise. I really love it and find it so therapeutic too!
I woke up feeling really achy today from all the walking (who knew it could be so tough!) so I wanted to do a class that both lengthened and toned. I went to Epoch Fitness’ Reformer Pilates class in Fitzrovia and it was exactly what I needed. This was one of the first classes I did when I got into exercise a few years ago and I still love it – Dimitri gives you a proper full body workout – focusing on every part while lengthening your muscles and getting your heart rate up. It’s definitely the best and most intense reformed Pilates class I’ve done! I asked to focus on my glutes today and my goodness, I felt it! Ouch!
I had an amazing lunch afterwards at Blakes Hotel. I have recently began to cut out meat during the week just because I felt I was eating a lot and I wanted to see how I felt by making this change to my diet. The vegetarian menu was absolutely incredible, I had artichoke, a delicious green soup and courgetti spaghetti which was divine! I highly recommend any veggies or vegans to go check out the menu.
Today was my rest day. I try not to do intense exercise more than two days in a row because I find my body starts to feel heavy when I overdo it. In my opinion, (I may be proved otherwise) exercise is still a stressor on the body and our brains can’t differentiate between good and bad stress so the release of cortisol should be considered when deciding how much exercise you do. Listen to your body – if you are feeling tired after exercising a lot then rest!
On my rest days I love doing yin yoga (which is great for slowing down the body and mind and opening your body gently) or getting a massage! Today though, I went for a facial with my favourite facialist, Dr Rabia Malik at Grace Belgravia. I got a light peel and felt glowing afterwards!
Today was a Paola’s BodyBarre day! I have always LOVED her classes and notice massive changes in my body when I do it, even after just one session. Like reformer Pilates, the class is designed to lengthen, strengthen and tone your body. Working on both the barre and the mat, my arms, abs and ass were given a serious beating! I found the class really challenging (in a good way) and felt amazing afterwards. There are always modifications for exercises too so you can work up to the more advanced poses - I love this as you can really see where you are improving and what you need to improve on too.
Before this, I had a gym-proof blowdry at my local hair salon Clo & Flo - I love Cedrick and Danni’s blowdries and always ask for a natural look with a soft beachy wave. I’m awful at doing my own hair so I just love having this down the road from me to fix my otherwise out-of-control mane! Clo and Flo (the gorgeous sisters who own it) are always in the salon too and it’s got such a nice family feel to it. I love it there!
For my pre-weekend training session, I went to the gorgeous BXR gym in Marylebone to train with one of the NIKE trainers, Courtney. It was an AMAZING session and I love having a one-to-one every now and then to improve my form and make sure my technique is right. We did a mixture of high intensity cardio, body strengthening circuits and some boxing (my favourite!). I also wore my new Nike Metcon trainers, £114.95, which are designed for intense cross-training activities and I really noticed how stable I felt during my workout; they were so comfortable too!
I used the steam room at BXR afterwards (accessible to anyone doing a Sweat By BXR class) and it was so rejuvenating. I am a huge fan of steam rooms; you relax your muscles, sweat out all your toxins and it does wonders for your respiratory system. The steam room at BXR is particularly amazing as it has aromatherapy oils pumped into it and is extra hot! I followed it with a freezing cold shower and felt like a new woman by the time I left!
For my last workout for the week, I decided to go spinning at my absolute all time favourite – Psycle! I am obsessed with the classes here – they are honestly just so much fun. I always feel that real sense of euphoria when I leave. The music gets you feeling so energised you end up doing so much more than you thought you could. I’ve gone to these classes feeling so lethargic and rubbish before and I ALWAYS leave feeling a million times better. I also sweat so much in these classes which always makes me feel so good and ready for the rest of the day.
Sunday was my travel day so I felt that I needed to do a yoga session before flying as I knew I was going to be sat down a lot - I wanted to stretch out as much as I could in preparation! I didn’t have much time, so I used the app Yogassential to book a private class at home! I love doing sessions at home every now and then as I think it’s so important to make sure your technique and alignment is right in yoga - in most classes you don’t really get corrected so you could be practising bad habits and actually making your posture worse. It also saves a lot of time travelling to the gym and back. I had a great class and worked a lot on my hips and shoulders (my problem areas) and felt so relaxed and ready for my holiday afterwards.