Cityscape taps into the latest fitness and health trends to rock your most stunning summer yet.
Wondering how Channing Tatum and the cast of Magic Mike got so ripped? It’s all about the CrossFit, says CrossFit Trailblazer’s Kyp Kotzikas. Putting stock in strength and endurance – aerobics this ain’t – CrossFit is all about measurable, observable, and repeatable results. Tackling a combination of lifting heavy objects, body weight movements, and monostructural-based cardio activities such as running, rowing, or jumping rope, CrossFitters are put through a series of exercises in a certain amount of time and the results are epic! What’s more, leveraging group dynamics, the bootcamp-style workouts create a super-competitive yet super-supportive space, and sees everyone digging in and achieving their goals. www.crossfittrailblazer.com
Beauty ingredient of the moment active charcoal has a long history of medicinal use; its millions of pores can bind harmful agents and prevent their absorption by the body, which has led to its widespread use as a treatment for poisoning. The theory in beauty therapy’s the same; the charcoal in products like face masks and cleansers acts like a magnet to attract and absorb dirt, oil, and the pure evil that can lurk in your pores. This helps to fight breakouts, reduce inflammation, and leave your skin looking fresher. You can even use the jet-black charcoal to help whiten your teeth!
The holistic health and fitness gurus at Mint Whole Body Health & Fitness rock a one-stop-shop. With a staff of professional personal trainers, a fully-equipped gym, and an on-site professional nutritionist, they also offer clean-eating café Pure Café Co., which eschews sugar, salt, butter, additives, preservatives and trans fats (and pretty much anything processed!) with their nutrient-dense creations. In fact, the Mint experience is unlike any other health and nutrition facility! Their unique approach combines industry-leading training with basic body measurements, macro calculations and meal planning with advanced BIA profiling and intolerance testing to redesign your body and awaken your potential. www.mintfit.co.nz
RAISING THE BARRE
Barre workouts, which take their lead from the warm-up exercises performed by ballet dancers – and you know that’s a well-fit profession – have hit phenomenon levels in 2015, gaining great swathes of grippy-socks-wearing devotees. Borrowing ballet’s wall-fixed barre, the workout creates long, lean muscles, tighter abs and toned arms, and increased flexibility – what’s not to love here?
TAKE A BREATH
Feeling stressed – don’t forget to breathe, advises Dr Libby. Diaphragmatic breathing activates the parasympathetic nervous system, which allows our bodies to go into rest and repair mode – essential for immune function, digestion, restful sleep and a great mood – as it communicates to every cell in your body that you are safe. We cannot access this part of our nervous system with our thoughts; only via how we breathe. It is amazing what our bodies can do with just a few minutes of calming, diaphragmatic breathing each day. www.drlibby.com
Yet to try Yoga? You’ve doubtless already got people in your social circle preaching all the benefits of the this ancient physical, mental, and spiritual practice at you, so you probably don’t need us to let you know how good it is for your flexibility, fitness, and overall wellbeing – what you need is to finally take the plunge and start reaping the benefits, slacker! Based on the tradition of Anusara yoga with elements of Vinyasa flow and therapeutic yoga, Grassroots Yoga & Health offers a physical alignment-based practice and flow yoga aimed at creating awareness in the body. Over at Flow Hot Yoga, different levels of heated classes (Yin at 30°C, Power Vinyasa at 36°C and Hot Flow at 40°C) provide optimal therapeutic benefits to help purify body and mind, and it’s hot over at Bikram Yoga Christchurch too, where they take a structured approach via the 26 formalised exercises of the Bikram school of yoga, practised in a room heated to 38°C.
Looking to lose fat, preserve muscle, and improve your cardiovascular health, but don’t have the time to spend hours in the gym each day? Then you need to tap into super High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), says Heritage Health Club’s personal trainer Syaz Salim.
Perfect for the time poor (we’re talking 15 – 30 minutes here), a HIIT programme combines intense intervals of high impact exercise with low to moderate exercise. Because the intensity is higher (and this is the key, you really need to go hard or go home here!) you get a much better cardio workout, increasing your aerobic and anaerobic endurance and burning more fat. It’s all about keeping your body on its (metaphorical) toes; when you do a cardio session at a consistent pace, your body goes into what is called ‘steady state’, adjusting itself to this speed so it can conserve energy – HIIT avoids this by confusing the body.
Research shows that the benefits of HIIT include increasing your metabolic rate for up to 24-hours after exercise, improving insulin sensitivity in the muscles (which makes your body use the food you eat, rather than storing it as fat), elevating growth hormone and catecholamine levels (precursors to fat burning), and decreasing post-exercise appetite. So what are you waiting for? www.heritagehealthclub.co.nz