Friday, 22 February 2013

Escape Bland Sportswear!
It may sound trivial, but there's something deflating about seeing three other people wearing the same gym outfit as you. And nothing says, 'I worked hard, I deserve it!' like a fresh, new gym outfit. I recently came across my escape - and the best part is, they currently have a sale on exclusive brands so there's no time like the present to deck yourself out in amazing colours and flattering designs.
From bikram yoga, pilates, running and dance - find your perfect outfit. My picks?
Wellicious Flexi band shorts

Miss Yoga tank
Wellicious flexi-waistband shorts in pebble grey and Miss Yoga tank in aqua. I know they'll go from cardio circuits to BodyPump to yoga and best of all? I won't see anyone else in them (unless I decide to go to Pump in New Zealand...)

Go to MyEscape (did I mention a SALE?) and also visit their Facebook site!

Thursday, 21 February 2013

Posture: A Picture of Health

Not only does good posture scream "I am confident!", it protects your spine, enables good circulation and stability and ensures you carry out the easiest to the most taxing tasks safely.
So, shoulders back and down, long neck, ribcage over the hips, chin parallel to the ground!

Lhami Love your Skin... PLUS GIVEAWAY!

Natalie founded Lhami products to ensure her range of skincare products are human and environmentally friendly. Based in New South Wales, Natalie not only manages to create products that take the best natural ingredients to nourish and enhance your skin, but she also studies and raises two young children. We had a chat about Lhami...

Lhami face products
 Why did you create products that are paraben and sulphate free?  
Parabens are the most widely used preservatives in skincare products. They are a common cause of allergic reactions and rashes, especially in children and anyone prone to develop eczema. They also mimic oestrogen, which is a major breast cancer risk, and are linked with reduced fertility in men, and may affect a developing foetus when absorbed though a pregnant woman’s skin.
SLS – Sodium Lauryl Sulphate or Sodium Laureth Sulphate is found in shampoo, soap, detergent, liquid cleansers, body washes, mouthwash and toothpaste. SLS can cause skin inflammation and drying, hair loss, dermatitis and eczema. It has been linked to immune system damage, and is a potential carcinogen. SLS can be stored in the liver, heart, lungs and brain.

 What ingredients are in your products and why? 
Pure bio-active plant oils and extracts, certified organic (ACO) wherever possible. I use the latest natural anti-ageing ingredients such as seabuckthorn oil, hyaluronic acid, and oils high in anti-oxidants and vitamin c to support the skins own collagen production. I also use Calendula and Chamomile extracts in practically every product as they are wonder herbs for the skin.

Do you have a background in creating skin/cosmetics products? How did you make this happen? 
I’ve been making my own perfumes and creams since I was a kid. My grandmothers got me started – one owned a Health Food Store and the other was a trained Chemist and used to mix up all her own face creams etc. I studied Cosmetic Chemistry with the head chemist from one of the world leading skincare brands, and I have studied Aromatherapy and Herbalism (I am completing a Naturopathy degree)

How do you manage running a business with studying and raising two young boys? 
Being very organised! I like to make all our food from scratch too – so I know my kids are getting healthy, organic lunches each day, and not pre packaged stuff. I only work during school hours so I can bake muffins, walk the dog and hang out with the kids after school. And studying…on the couch at the end of the day with some organic chocolate and a cup of Lhami Wellbeing Tea to relax with.

What else do you do for your own health and wellbeing? 
Yoga for 30 minutes before I start work, and at least one walk a day with the dog & kids, in the bush or at the beach so we can all ground ourselves and get some fresh air. Lots of fresh organic food and herbal tea, and time out for myself reading good book in bed. Oh, and my Friday night vice…gin and tonic and cheezles!! Ha Ha.

Lhami is available via the website. Competition currently running on Core Integrity With Cat Facebook page to win a Lhami product!

Saturday, 16 February 2013

30 Minutes Cardio is Ideal

Stop the looooong cardio sessions - they leave your body exhausted and stressed. RESULTS come from amping up the intensity! For every two minutes of running/cycling, sprint for 30 seconds. Do some kicks or starjumps between weights sets. As long as you keep it to 30 minutes, you're torching calories, building lean muscle and improving cardio fitness!
Other ideas? Boxing, kettlebells, step-ups, skipping, squat jumps, plyometrics....

Wednesday, 13 February 2013

Vitamin D: The Performance Booster

Vitamin D is an essential element in athletic performance. Not only vital to bone development, Vitamin D allows body cells to utilise calcium, muscle fibre development and growth and optimum immune system function.

Vitamin D Sports Performance
Vitamin D is absorbed through exposure to sunlight, though with many people working long hours indoors, it is common to find that we’re deficient. Dietary sources don’t provide an adequate amount in most cases (unless you’re guzzling litres of fortified milk or taking a dose of cod-liver oil each day!).

Researchers recently tested the jumping ability of a group of adolescent athletes. The results found that those with the lowest levels of Vitamin D tended not to jump as high, leading to the conclusion that low levels of D lead to impaired muscle power. It is also thought to lead to greater risk of injuries and longer recovery periods.

In a Creighton University study, female athletes given Vitamin D supplements recovered from stress fractures at double the rate of those not given the supplement.
Five to thirty minutes of sunlight per week is safe and sufficient in most cases. It cannot be absorbed through sunscreen so ensure that post-sunlight exposure (maximum 30 minutes) you are applying UV protection for safety!

Vitamin D Plyometric Power
Or try supplements. 1,000 IU a day and much more for people who are deficient is probably close to ideal. This, by the way, is about double the current recommended daily allowance. Most experts anticipate that this allowance will be revised upward soon. Consult with your doctor before beginning supplements. Overdoses of Vitamin D are rare, but can occur.

Thursday, 7 February 2013

Kula Yoga - Meet Kacey Bennett

Kacey Bennett
Last week I had the pleasure of doing a Flow class at Kula Yoga in Hawthorn East. The delightful founder and instructor, Kacey Bennett lead us through vinyasa flow and the time just seemed to fly by.
The studio is gorgeous - an oasis of peace and calm.
Though busy with running a 30-day Yoga challenge AND opening a new CrossFit gym down the road, Kacey managed to answer some of my questions. I recommend you try Flow, Hot Yoga or Light as you prefer and enjoy the light-filled, professional studios.

What was your vision for Kula Yoga before you opened?
We wanted to create a beautiful sanctuary. A holistic studio that welcomed everyone wanting to explore yoga, health and wellbeing. To offer various class types – Hot, Flow & Light - led by inspiring teachers. And, to be the largest studio in the area and the one to offer specialised FIR heating panels for healthy heat.
How has that idea grown and changed since?
Our studio is almost 5 months old and it has been incredible to watch it build. We have the most amazing group of students coming through our doors. We are thrilled to see our vision coming to life and excited to continue to grow.
Can you describe what classes are on offer and who they best suit?
We offer 3 different class types and all run for 60 minutes. ‘Hot’ is a slow flowing vinyasa style practice that is fantastic for detoxification. ‘Flow’ is a revitalising, dynamic power flow class. And ‘Light’ is a relaxed, gentle class focusing on deep stretches. Our classes are open to all abilities. We offer modifications for beginners and variations to those with a regular practice. 

You are also opening a crossfit centre - how do crossfit and yoga complement each other, if at all?
Yes, we are opening CrossFit Hawthorn East on Saturday February 16. CrossFitters, and athletes in general, have discovered the benefits of incorporating yoga into their training for added mobility, stability, strength, focus and flexibility. Although they appear different on the surface, there are parallels between the two disciplines – the connection with the breath to find your rhythm, the power of the body and mind to get through the physical challenge, and the feeling of freedom and invigoration at the end of a session.
What can participants look forward to in the way of events/timetable additions or offers in February?
At the start of February we increased our number of classes up to 22 per week. Every Friday we offer a ‘Fun Friday Flow’ which we rotate between the teachers and allow them to focus on the theme of their choice. We are also holding Valentine’s Day Partner Yoga workshop on February 14 for those wanting a unique way to celebrate.
Find more information on the Kula Yoga website or Facebook page!

Denise Payne: Fearlessness And Mercy

In the 1970s, as a teenager, Denise Payne was introduced to Kundalini Yoga by her teacher Sat Jiwan Singh. It became more than “a life...