Starting a Capsule Wardrobe

So if you have been following our decluttering journey you will know that the Kon Mari method has had a profound effect on our home. In particular the clothing aspect, it really shows you the things you love and the things you do not wear, which has led me to really evaluate my wardrobe and delve into the wonders of the popular way of organising your wardrobe.  If you are looking for ways to make life a little easier in the wardrobe department then this is it.

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Out with the old and in with the new

Happy New Year all

We hope 2015 was a year of growth and positivity for in some way shape or form, as you can see we have had a little name change from Mr and Mrs Workout to our new name of A Mr and Mrs life we feel it’s much more encompassing of what we are are about.  So we hope you like the new look and feel. We will be posting a lot more this year, with motivational and helpful lifestyle things that will help make life easier. Feel free to give us suggestions on what you would like to see.

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Let it go

Many of you may be wondering, where have I gone?  So I am writing a post because I like to write and get things down on paper (well computer screen) otherwise they are floating around in my head and they just keep floating around in my head and won’t go away. Much like when you go to bed and you think of a million and one things before going to sleep except mine is all day Hehe

carrie

Ideal blog writing scenario

Ok so picture me typing Doogie Howsy style right now (can you remember that show?) actually scratch that Carrie Bradshaw style by a beautiful picturesque window, typing and pondering my ever so brilliant thoughts in beautifully crafted designer heels and some thoughtfully put together outfit. (I miss that show) Actually scratch that you know I am all about the real. Really I’m typing on my HP laptop in quickly put together outfit (because it was clean) in my living area facing a wall trying to type ever so quietly while my adventurous 10 month old sleeps and my little princess is at nursery trying to get few moments peace and quite while avoiding that pile of dishes and pile of clothes that needs folding. What my reality looks like when trying to create a blog post of my jumbled thoughts, nowhere near as glamorous hehe.

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Family fun at a recent trip to Peppa Pig world

What have I been doing in my time away. Enjoying my life, my children, my husband, my family and learning. Sometimes every now again you need to take a break, take a break from things that make you miss out on true beauty the beauty and wonder right in front of your face not through a phone/computer screen.

 

Another thing I have been doing is practising ‘letting it go’. No not that annoyingly catch song from Disney’s Frozen, no I’ve been letting things go from mind and body.

I have had a good old break from weight training as I said in my previous post on Instagram I want to train smarter not harder, so I think my body deserved a well-earned rest. I am always always always trying to improve on my knowledge to be the best trainer I can be so I can train optimally and get the best out of the workout for me and my clients. Actually not just for that fact alone, so my kids  and  especially can learn from me and not have to go through some of the annoying women’s problems we go through had we been taught correctly. For me that  has included learning more about optimal posture/alignment, more walks more stretching, more focus on proper core activation and more barefoot walking around. Will be back to weight training this week as I think my gym has got to be missing me, stretching and strengthening the whole body is important guys no one main area should be your focus it’s a balance of it all.

I have also been letting go of my tummy, ‘huh’ I can imagine you’re saying. Working on proper core activation I have noticed that I constantly walked around with my tummy muscles tighten actually not only walking around but even when sitting and I had to consciously say to myself’ let go of my tummy’. You’re probably thinking isn’t it good to keep your tummy clenched 24/7? Well, no! For your muscles/ body to work optimally your muscles need to be able to relax and tighten properly something that is rare in the modern-day from lack of movement and office jobs and serial TV watching etc. A muscle that is too tight (kept at a tension all the time) is only shortening the muscle and it cannot function to its best of its ability. I could go into a more in-depth science version but it good to keep things simple but Google is amazing thing if you want to learn more about your body. Keeping my tummy tight all time will only cause more dysfunction, letting my tummy go will relieve my core of the constant pressure on my core and allow for better core activation when it’s actually time for it do some real work. Now listen up working your core doesn’t just mean throwing in some ab crunches or planks daily, it’s much more than that, get to know the core muscles and learn how to fire them correctly for optimal heath. Note I don’t think I have done crunches in years and don’t intend not to more many more to come.

core 1core-muscles1

 

In the essences of letting things go, I want you to try letting it go to, let your tummy go stop sucking in all day in the long run in its better for correct core function.

Let go of the serial high heel wearing ladies I am a recovering high heel addict (a post for another day) cut a long story short it creates more problems in your posture and alignment.

Let go of the couch, get out do some  fun things with your family go for a family walk. Get up and move.

Try letting go a little of this modern-day infatuation with social media and all the devices. Don’t get me wrong understand its importance but just don’t make it your focus. Try letting go of Instagram/Facebook for a few day/weeks.

If you follow my Instagram you hear me talk a lot about ‘Loving the skin you’re in’ Try letting go of that annoying voice in your head that urges you to compare yourself to that famous bodybuilding competitor/über fit person you follow that posts a picture daily of their whatever % body fat they have at the time that makes you feel you aren’t going hard enough. Loving yourself is the first step, in reality these guys work damn hard and what you see requires a lot of meticulous planning and preparation and is often not ideal for optimal health. They most likely cannot function at such low body fats for a long period of time. Don’t be so hard on yourself, Instead strive for improvement not perfection, I know you have heard that cheesy line so many times but it’s true. Work your body towards optimal health because most of us aren’t in a competition that will arrive at the end of 12 weeks’ time of vigorous training you’re in that competition called LIFE.

 

 

Have a lovely blessed day all.

 

Mrs Workout

 

 

 

 

 

 

Starting a fitness journey

Mr & Mrs are only human so our nutrition isn’t always 100% tight but when we do get it on point we use some of the below sites and apps to keep us on track. It wouldn’t be feasible for us to do this type of tracking with our meals the whole year round so we use them as guides. If we feel we are going off track we may count/track calories and macros for a week or two to see where we are going wrong.
Adopting a healthy approach and eating balanced meals with a combination  of Carbs, Proteins, Fats, Fruits and Veg in your diet is the best way to stay healthy if you don’t want to track that’s fine it’s not for everyone I can be discouraging and obsessive for some.

Daily Calorie needs calculator

Here is a calculator to find out your basic daily calorie needs. This is just an estimate If your goal is to lose weight subtract 300/500 pounds from the total or add that much on top if yours is to gain.

Calorie Counter App

If you want to track your macros or calories you can use this site and app where you can modify it to your goals. Note***  the app will have pre-set macros to change this go to the desktop site and logo in and change the macro details as you want in settings***

What are Macronutrients

Macronutrients are class of nutrients that provide calories or energy. Nutrients are substances needed for growth, metabolism, and for other body functions. The three main nutrients are Carbs, Protein and Fat people can manipulate these in their diet to get different results.

What Are Macros?

Macro Calculator

“To work out your macros for the day select the calculator that has the percentages that most suit your goals enter your daily calories needs in and voila!

Exercise Library

If your ever feeling lost and your following a program or your just don’t understand how a machine works. Visit this page below keep it in your favourites or download their app and have it direct on your phone.

Workout While The Kids Sleep

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Workout While The Kids Sleep

I am lover of the gym I design my workouts to get maximum benefit whether I be in the gym or at home. If you follow us you will know we are  busy parents of two and you know just like anyone else that sometimes you just can’t make it to the gym so what do you do…. workout while the kids sleep

Lil Mr Workout turned 8 months just over a week ago and has learnt to walk, has cut his two front teeth, recovering from a bout of chicken pox and not quite mastered the fine arts of sleeping through the night. Through all this development he is doing makes for some what of an interesting task  when you are trying to head out for an evening workout, we try plan our workouts in after the kids have gone to bed and we normally tag team alternate days.  I am sure you can imagine all this new development for an 8 month baby means much needed cuddle time with Mummy which calls for me to be close but…. alas I don’t want to have to stop training so while the kids slept Mr Workout and I got our workout on.

Here is my back and active rest workout, great for killing two birds with one stone when you are short for time and want to get your weight training done and cardio in for that day great for fat loss and working on sculpting those muscles and great workout while the kids sleep.

Make sure you warm up nicely to get the body warm and get the blood pumping to the muscles add in some dynamic stretches and pay close attention to the muscles you will be working.  Always make sure you do the  resistance move before the plyometric/ cardio move this way you can ensure  you put maxim effort in your lift.  If you don’t have a bosu ball that’s fine you can do body weight ( sssshh a secret  mine isn’t a bosu ball its actually a cheaper version I found from Amazon UK works just as well ) I am also using a Lerbert Equalizer as  a safer option as  a pull up variation  due to me having hernia surgery a few months back. You can make a make shift one but please ensure its stable. Or use a a resistance band on a pull up bar to assist you, Rubber Banditz its a great company but  there are loads if you search on Amazon or you can ask your partner to help you. If you are really feeling beast-mode use the pull up bar all on its own. ( Mentally high fiving you right now)  For the resistance/weight training moves I am using my York Fitness dial select dumbbells, you can use resistance bands? kettle bells, heavy water bottles or anything that will provide you resistance and be a challenge for you.

Each move I  did 4 sets 15 reps with no breaks in between the paired exercises after each set rest for 30  to 60 seconds.

Note…As you  see in the video I shouted ‘ I can row this!!!’ I surprised myself with a weight I didn’t think I could do for 15 reps so don’t forget to challenge yourself ( whilst being safe of course)

Inverted row ( Great regression for pull ups)

  • With feet on the stability dome ( This provides some extra instability to increase the intensity)
  • Grab hold of the bars and pull yourself up
  • Neutral spine as as always

Note: You can  use a pull up bar and just do assisted squat

Stability dome squat

  • Dome side down careful get on, use something to help you balance if needed
  • Arms out in form for balance thumb sups if you like as I have done it will help you activate your back to help squat
  • Upper thighs parallel to the ground as you sit back into the squat
  • Knees behind  toes
  • Back straight with a slight curve in lower spine
  • Chest up and  neutral spine
  • As you drive back up push the weight though your heels

Note: You can do a standard body weight squat if you like

Do each exercise after each other  rest and repeat till your sets are done

Double dumbbell arm row

This is a slight variation on a double arm row with a longer reach

  • Neutral spine- head and spine in alignment.
  • Bending at the waist
  • Draw the weight towards  your torso bending at the elbow keeping the upper arm parallel to floor
  • Don’t forget to breath out as you bring the weight up

Lunge  jump squat

  • Jumping one foot forward and the other back with a  bend in the knee
  • The forward  foot having knees behind toes
  • Spring back up bringing the feet to middle
  • Jumping out in to a low squat knees

Do each exercise after each other  rest and repeat till your sets are done

Single arm row

  • Neutral spine- head and spine in alignment.
  • Bending at the waist
  • Draw the weight towards  your torso bending at the elbow keeping the upper arm parallel to floor
  • Don’t forget to breath out as you bring the weight up
  • I have rested my hand on the equalizer for added stability but you can use a  hair or a bench if you have it

1 Leg on bosu  ball squat jump with

  • 1 leg in the stability dome and one on the ground explode off the ground as  you would normally do a jump squat
  • The upper legs should be parallel to the ground to get maximum benefit.
  • Ensure you knees are behind the toes.
  • When returning to the ground make sure those knees have  a soft bend
  • Put those hand out in from of you stabilise yourself it will also help for momentum

Do one arm and one leg  rest and do the other side.

Deadlift

  • With a  slight bend in the the knees, hips back and back straight.
  • Keeping your back and arms completely straight at all times
  • Use your hips to lift the dumbbell as you breath out

Squat jump on stability dome

  • Stability dome  facing up
  • Feet either side of the the dome jump up on to the dome
  • Soft bend in the knees as land in the middle of the dome
  • Push of the centre of the dome returning feet either side of the dome

Do each exercise after each other  rest and repeat till your sets are done

A great workout for your back and some cardio which will have the legs burning the kids were asleep so it made it at an extra challenge to keep the  jumps light footed lol try it out and let me know what you think, workout while the kids sleep;)

FIT PREGNANCY

**Before exercising please check with your health professional that you have the green light to exercise during pregnancy and common sense is used whilst exercising at all times**

Prenatal Fitness

  • Want to have a fit pregnancy? Research suggest that healthy women with uncomplicated pregnancies do not need to limit exercise for fear of adverse effects. However exercise is not advisable for some during pregnancy so please talk to a health professional first.  Activities that’s are overly vigorous and have a high potential for falling or abdominal trauma should be avoided. Exercises that require a high degree of balance and agility should be avoided especially in late stages of pregnancy

    For all healthy pregnant women wanting to exercise a few guidelines. (Experienced and new people new to exercise

    • You can workout 3-5 per week (no more than this mummy you need your rest) As you progress to late pregnancy you may want to reduce 3-4 sessions per week
    • Intensity should be light to somewhat hard (don’t go crazy ladies)
    • If you didn’t exercise before pregnancy please keep all exercises light
    • Always included warm up and cool downs with stretches to limber up joints at beginning and end.

    A few question I’ve been asked…

    What am I allowed to do?

    OK yummy mummies to be here’s the 411. If the doctor has given you a clean bill of health and the OK to exercise its absolutely fine go right ahead. Most pregnant women usually can continue most activities during pregnancy by using common sense and making appropriate modifications based on how you feel, symptoms you display and joint laxity. This does not mean take up a new sport or exercise you have never done before. If you did the activity before its fine to continue although bear in mind you will need to make modifications as you progress. If you haven’t really worked out before but you’re healthy and a doctor has given you the all clear, then start off with a basic light program. If you are in the 1st trimester it’s fine to do exercises on your back and crunches if you so wish. So it’s largely based on how you feel and common sense e.g if you’re a runner maybe try running on a treadmill or if you are a cyclist use a stationary bike to minimise the risk of falling and outside conditions beyond your control. Or a lifter would use seated leg extensions to work the quads instead of squats if that’s uncomfortable.

    A Mr & Mrs Life Fit Pregnancy

    Can I lift weights whilst pregnant?’

    The answer is…YES, now if you’re new to resistance training now is not the time to start practicing your best clean and jerk and making PB’s on squats and leg presses though.

    Here are some basics for the yummy mummies to be that want to start adding a resistance workout to their routine.

    • Think about training all the major muscle groups. Legs chest back shoulders etc maybe pick about 8-10 exercises. You can do this as full body session or split into lower body upper body etcWith full body sessions train each muscle group 2-3 time a week with sufficient rest days in between each workout to allow for recovery
    • 1-3 sets of each exercise allow enough rest between each set to recovery
    • Rep range 12-15
    • Try and keep your workout under an hour including warm up and cool down. For experienced lifters you probably already aware you can pretty much carry on as normal making modifications as you progress, decreasing the weight etc. When doing resistance training…

    ALWAYS use correct form and lift weight in a slow controlled manner

    NEVER Hold your breath when performing any exercise

    DON’T perform exercises to complete exhausting

    What are about squats or lunges??

    As you progress in your pregnancy squats are fine to continue with but be careful of the load. Lunges/squats etc can become difficult due to a loss in centre of gravity and joint flexibility etc.

    Here are a few examples of when to STOP exercising if you are working out whilst pregnant.

    • Severe headaches
    • Floaters-lights or floaters in front of your eyes
    • Shortness of breath prior to exertion
    • Palpitations- extreme fatigue or chest pain
    • If you aren’t gaining weight in your pregnancy
    • Unusual abdominal pain
    • Increased blood pressure
    • Persistent contractions
    • Sudden swelling
    • Inflamed calves

    These are just some of the signs where you should stop exercising. If at any time you don’t feel well/right or you feel something is wrong during exercise stop and talk to a health professional.

    A Mr & Mrs life Fit pregnancy

    Things to remember during a fit pregnancy….

    ALWAYS workout in a well-ventilated room keep well hydrated to prevent overheating of you and baby. Pay attention to your heart rate with a monitor or using talk test. That being said if you’re worried and you’re a new mummy to be don’t feel pressured to workout just because other expectant mothers are and it’s in fashion. Do what’s right for you take a healthy approach to pregnancy in general.

    FYI… Please note if you follow us on our fitness journey and seen some of my pregnancy workouts. I am an experienced exerciser and I know what I am doing. Any exercises you see me do that looks out of the ordinary please to do not try yourself unless you are experienced or have guidance of a fitness professional with you. I to would love to try new activities myself whilst pregnant but as I have never done them before this is not the time to start.

    So ladies what are you waiting for? Get active today!

    Check out Weight training during pregnancy post


    Postnatal Fitness

    A few question I’ve been asked during my fit pregnancy…

    ‘How soon after delivery can I start exercising?’

    The general advice for women to exercise is 6 weeks after birth after your postnatal check-up and all is clear with the doctor.

    However if you have had a normal and uncomplicated birth you don’t have to wait that long to start some light exercise.

    Suitable exercises you can start with as soon as 24 hours after if you feel well and comfortable to do so is abdominal and pelvic floor exercises. So get to them Kegal exercises and belly breathing ladies.

    Now by ab exercises I don’t mean start doing a whole bunch of crunches this will only exacerbate the issue and will only make the diastasis worse which is common in pregnancy.

    If you want to do a little more than just core exercises you can begin with gentle walking and increase the intensity from there.

    Don’t worry if you’re not up to it your body has just undergone a big transformation in your body for 9 months and put in some hard work during the birth. You will need mental time to recover and for you and baba to get into a routine.

    Personally in my first pregnancy, I had no desire to make it a fit one and didn’t feel ready to exercise until 8 months after. Everyone is different so take it easy and take your time and ease yourself back in at your own pace.

    If you have had C-section providing you feel well you can also perform these light exercises but if you’re unsure please check with your health professional first.

    ****note****The more difficult exercises like planks and should be left until a few weeks later when you’re feeling stronger waiting at least 6 weeks is advisable as your tummy is still adjusting issues may arise where the placenta was.

    ***Disclaimer: I am qualified to teach Pre/Post Natal fitness, Readers discretion advised, please consult your physician before beginning any exercise or diet program.**

     

How soon after having my baby can I exercise?

How soon after having my baby can I exercise well…….. the general advise is 6-8 weeks after your postnatal check up with your doctor but as the saying goes everyone is different. If you haven’t had a C-section or you had uncomplicated delivery its OK to return to light exercise if your feeling well.  The rule is if you exercised through your pregnancy you can start at the intensity you finished with at the end of your pregnancy if you didn’t exercise during pregnancy you need to keep it light and work your way up gradually.

Safe exercises you can start as soon as 24hrs after delivery are pelvic floor exercises and appropriate abdominal exercises focusing on transverse abdominal exercises first and suitable rectus abdominal exercises once the deep transverse has been worked on.

Core exercises you CAN DO

Transverse exercises e.g
ABDOMINAL HOLLOWING ( hollowing can be preformed standing, seated or lying. Focus on bringing your naval towards your spine.)
LEG SLIDES (Focus on bringing your naval towards your spine no doming of the stomach should occur)
KNEE RAISES ( Lying on your back and as above)

Rectus abdominal exercises e.g
PELVIC TILTS ( Lying on your back)
BRIDGE

Core exercises to AVOID  before  6-8 weeks

NO CRUNCHES (You don’t want to create any dooming this will further increase diastasis recti)
NO EXERCISES IN 4 POINT KNEELING POSITION( There is a small risk of air entering the raw placental site and causing illness)
NO PLANKS (As above, also as the core muscles are not yet that strong the increased weight from your organs can cause additional stress on you abdominals that are trying to repair it self)

Cardio

Light cardiovascular work such as walking can be undergone if your feeling well.  A good range to keep your heart rate is 50/70% MHR or light to somewhat heart and working up a sweat if you don’t have a heart rate monitor. Try and stay away from high intensity exercises that vigorous in the early weeks as the pelvic floor will still be very weak  also the effects of the hormone relaxin are still in your system so its much more easier to get an injury and pull something.
Don’t underestimate the power of walking it will get you at the house and you and baby can get some fresh air. If you like to use machines or do other activities to do your cardio, stick to machines/activities that are low impact. However if you do use machines such as the cross trainer for example be aware that this machine requires activation of the core muscles and  if you don’t have good control of it yet you can have some issues with over rotation movements with your core. With the cross trainer good form must be used as not to cause and joint injuries.

Resistance Training

Resistance training can be undergone once core muscles have been regained, as I said before everyone is different and depending on your core strength during pregnancy you may gain control quicker. Even though you may be eager to return to exercise please remember to exercise with caution and to select the exercises carefully. When resistance training you will almost certainly be using your core to help you during some part of the exercise that’s why its very important to make sure these are strong before starting formal exercise. You could be doing more damage than good if you don’t know what your doing and your not activating your core during each exercise.
Again the hormone relaxin will still be lingering in your body especially if your breast feeding so its much easier to gain injury as the ligaments and joints are loose. Therefore working in the higher rep range is beneficial to start with so your not working your muscles to complete failure.

Above all listen to your body, there is no race and you don’t have to be in competition with anyone. Every woman you come across will have different levels of fitness and will return to exercise at their own pace. If anything is hurting or doesn’t feel right stop, if you notice an increase in bleeding that’s a good sign to slow things down. If your eager to return to exercise why not visit the doctors earlier and see if they will give you a quick check up to go ahead.

Have a blessed day Fit mama’s
xx