Throw back to... Aerobics

Having just reacquainted myself with devising and executing aerobic choreography I felt I should share this journey back in time with you! Firstly, in order to teach any class with music, as an instructor, you are required to complete the Exercise to Music course which covers all the basics such as box steps, grapevines, side steps and such. Since successfully passing the course 2 or 3 years ago I have delivered only 2 full classes in this style. Recently, I agreed to cover 2 more classes for a friend so its time for a revival!

In planning my routine, I have taken inspiration from the Ministry of Sound Pump it Up DVD series. They mix dance music with dance moves to bring aerobics bang up to date. So now, I have 3 blocks of 32 (everything is counted in 8's) choreography consisting of punches, kicks, body ripples and more. I even managed to sneak some trademark NTC moves into my session plan. This follows  a ten minute warm up and is followed by a Muscular Strength and Endurance (MSE) routine full of squats, lunges and core work. Having made it to this point, 55 minutes through the 60 minute class, everyone gets to enjoy a quick cool down and stretch. 

9 days till I am let loose on the participants! I am going to have to put in some practice in an attempt to imprint the routine and music into my mind!

If you fancy coming along to witness this in person, I will be covering on Monday 10th and Monday 17th September, 6pm at Danceworks, London. If you can't be there, spare a thought for me! ;) 

Hmmm, now, what to wear?! ...I will be trying out the Nike Free XT Motion Fit trainers at these classes with the intention of letting you know if I love them or not!

Elle :) x


Sadly, I'm no Iron Woman

Its August right now, almost September. Would you believe me if I told you I have been unwell since Monday July 9th?! Believe me or not, that is a fact. I had the worse case of sinusitis I have EVER had before which took just under 3 weeks to clear up. As a result I got a cough which lingered for 2 - 3 weeks followed by a sore throat which will now not go away.

After 6 weeks of being unwell, I paid the Doctor a visit. She informed me that my illness was viral and I would just have to let it take its course and go away. She did however say that 6 weeks was a long time to be ill and maybe I had an iron deficiency which was hampering my recovery. This was no huge surprise to me, as I have been anemic before in my younger days. I opted out of a blood test and told her I would take some iron tablets, which made her question my diet, which made me question my diet!

In all honesty, I couldn't remember the last time I cooked a vegetable at home never mind a leafy green one high in iron! 

Iron is an important component of haemogloblin (the protein which transports oxygen around your body). Low irons levels can therefore lead to feeling lethargic and tired, which can reduce your motivation to get out of bed, let alone exercise and is currently the most common micronutrient deficiency in the world! 

The Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) for women is almost 50% higher than that for males, and it is possible to achieve your RDA on a normal healthy diet. 

Iron-rich foods include:
  • dark-green leafy vegetables, such as watercress, spinach and curly kale
  • iron-fortified bread
  • beans
  • nuts
  • meat
  • apricots
  • prunes
  • raisins (NHS Direct, 2012)

But there are also foods which make it harder for your body to absorb iron:

These may include:
  • tea and coffee
  • wholegrain cereals
  • calcium, found in dairy products such as milk
  • antacids (medication to help relieve indigestion)

So, now the fight is on to get rid of my sore throat and get fully back into action. It would help if when everyone sneezes / coughs they covered their mouth, and also didn't hold onto the hand rail after sneezing / coughing into that hand (if you aren't already conscientious about these things!) 

...There you go, I am "No iron woman"! The moral of the story is... EAT CLEAN, TRAIN DIRTY! Try to always eat a nutritionally balanced meal and then give it all you've got in your workout! 

Elle ;) x


The Lunchtime 'Elle' Run - 10th August 2012

It's a beautiful day outside, and with all the inspiration on the Nike Running Facebook page for the Run This Town mission they are having, I decided to create my own unique run! With the streets of London not being as symmetrical as those in the states, I really did need to plan! I did this using Places on the Nike+ website; printed out the route and off we went today lunchtime on the 'Elle' run!

The route started close to the office, taking us towards the River Thames, then through the back streets of Southwark finishing up in Borough on the High Street leaving us with a 10 minute stroll back to the office in the sunshine.

A little unsure of the Nike+ Running app (which can currently be downloaded free of charge) I paused the run between the end of each letter and the start of the next. However, looking at the route map afterwards this seems to have made no difference. The run I logged was 2.70km, but in total it was 3.21km lasting 21.5 minutes. The run also earned me approximately 1000 NikeFuel!

It was a pleasure not to be in the gym, but having been running on a treadmill, the difference running on the roads and pavements was apparent!

So, will you get in the game and Run This Town?! The 'Elle' run was for #London!! Check out the UK Run This Town (or USA) event page on Facebook.


Elle :) x


Drill Pack 2 - Arms & Shoulders

Personally, I could pull a ton using the strength and power in my thighs! However, when it comes to upper body strength I think I am with the majority of the female population in that press ups didn't come naturally to me!
I have been pole dancing on and off for 2 years now, and I have gotten to the point where I will be doing inversions (going upside down) which take a fair bit of upper body strength. So I have taken some time off pole dancing  to improve that area of my fitness and am sharing here, a few of my recommended drills.

These drills are one's I use when teaching Nike Training Club. You can become a part of the community and sign up for free classes yourself via their Facebook page. 

Beginner - 30 seconds each leg
Intermediate / Advanced - 45 seconds each leg

Stand on one leg with your arms by your side. bring both arms out to your side (lateral raise), in front of you and back to you your sides. Repeat. You can vary the intensity based on how heavy / light the weights are that you use.

Drill 1: Start position
Drill 1: lateral raise
Drill 1: Arms in front


Beginner - Modified: do movement on knees
Intermediate / Advanced - do movement on toes

Drill 2: Body lowered to the ground
Drill 2: start position

Whether on your toes or knees, ensure you bring your hips forward to shift the weight over your shoulders.Lower your upper body towards the ground, by bending your elbows, keeping your butt down and abs tight. Ensure you keep your elbows tucked into your sides to shift the focus onto your triceps. Push up, and repeat.

Intermediate / Advanced - 30 - 60 seconds

Drill 3: Front raise

Start in plank position, hands directly under shoulders, feet shoulder width apart. Bring one arm up in front of you till your upper arm in next to your ear. Return your arm to the start position and repeat the movement with your other arm, alternating for the period of time. You can try this drill without dumbbells, and as you progress use dumbbells to make the drill more challenging.

Elle :) x

P.S Safety always comes first. If you are new to exercise ensure you seek advice from your GP. Make sure you drink plenty of fluids, wear appropriate clothing and carry out drills in a suitable space. Technique is paramount, and nothing should hurt. Should you experience pain, discomfort, nausea, dizziness, chest pain, shortness of breath etc, STOP and consult your GP. 

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