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Forget Zumba, have you ever tried KONGA fitness?

This high-intensity workout can help you burn up to 600 calories and take over 7000 steps in one class! KONGA Fitness Instructor, Katherine Hubbard, shares everything you need to know about this amazing workout…

What is KONGA fitness?
KONGA is an easy to follow, high intensity work out designed for the most uncoordinated people. It is a mixture of cardio, dance, squats, toning, boxing and Hip Hop. The class is for an hour and there are 6 rounds. There are only four moves per track to make it easy to follow and I break down those moves before the track starts; so you can concentrate on the intensity and technic (rather then 10 complicated moves that are done with little impact).

Who can do it?
KONGA is for everyone. The class I teach is suitable for 16-60 year-olds, offering a lower intensity option to those who are older.

How many calories can you expect to burn in one class?
You can burn anywhere from 350 calories to 600 calories. On average I burn 400 calories which is a lot compared to many other fitness classes which tend to hover round the 100-250 mark. For an example, a run on the treadmill for 45 minutes will burn 250 calories and that’s without having all the fun of KONGA! You will roughly do 7000+ steps in an hour of KONGA – anyone who has a fitbit of some sort will appreciate how many that is!

Can you describe what a class is like?
The class is in the dark with disco lights and loud music, before each track I will break down the 4 moves for that song and we will do a quick transition from song to song, to ensure your heart rate doesn’t drop too quickly. It’s extremely fun, fast and fierce and it makes you feel good. Plus, I’m with you every step of the way, working out just like you are. KONGA is a class you can do with your friends or with your mum.

Can Konga fitness help you lose weight?
Absolutely but like any fitness it is about consistency, to see any change in your body you need to allow for 6-8 weeks of consistently working out. The temptation after 2-3 weeks is to jump on the scales, however all weight lose takes time and must co exist with a good diet. I personally have noticed the difference in my body shape. I don’t weigh myself, but I want to feel good and like most women I go by my how my clothes fit. I am a lot leaner than I was before KONGA, and I’ve got more definition from it. If I was to go to the gym I know I would need to separately work out those muscles to get as toned.

What would you say to those keen to try it but are nervous they have no rhythm?
You don’t need it! I am not a dancer myself and have little to no rhythm. It was designed to be for those uncoordinated who love working out to loud music. I think that’s the great thing about it being a mixture of different types of exercise you maybe be great at the HIIT based moves, great at dance moves or great at the boxing moves. It’s for everyone!

What parts of your body is it good for?
It’s a full body work out. You will always be using your arms, legs and core muscles.

What do you love about KONGA?
I have never been a fan of the gym but I love loud music and getting a good sweat on, so when I trained to be a Jungle Body Konga instructor I fell in love with it straight away. I feel a great sense of achievement after each workout, it’s not easy but it’s not meant to be! I guarantee you will fall in love with it over night… even if you can’t walk the day after.

The Jungle Body with Kat
Kat teaches Konga in Wimbledon, London on Tuesday nights at 7.30pm – plus there’s parking.
To book yourself into Kat’s class, click here
To learn more about Konga Fitness, check out www.thejunglebody.com

Could KONGA help new mums get fit, too? Click here to read more.

Could KONGA help new mums get fit

Finding an exciting and effective workout to do post-baby can be a challenging thing. On discovering KONGA fitness and what it has to offer, I was keen to find out from instructor Katherine Hubbard, if this could be an enjoyable, full body workout for new mums.

Is KONGA fitness suitable for new mums?
It’s recommended that all new mums do not undertake any intense work out until their pelvic floor muscles have strengthened and this will be differ from mum to mum. I would rest your body for at least 8 – 12 weeks, but your GP is best placed to advise. KONGA is a high intensity work out I would recommend using that time to do low impact cardio such as walking and lower pelvic toning, STAY AWAY FROM SIT UPS…  Swimming is really good but you must wait until you have had a check up.

If you wanted to join a KONGA class after 12 weeks or so you are more then welcome to try it, just take it easy and ensure you tell your instructor. I would recommend joining in on a floor rotation cycle to build up you pelvic muscles. I have a lot of new mums in my class and they love it but I recommend wearing a sanitary towel for all the jumping around!

How do new mums shape your KONGA class?
I work on 6 week rotations and we are currently in an arm and bums rotation as per a request from one of my mums in the class, after 6 weeks it will be stomach and bums or arms and stomach. I really like class feedback on what areas of their body they want to work on. However, each class will focus on working your whole body. The class is broken into 6 rounds which looks a bit like this –

Round 1 – Warm Up track
Round 2 – 4 Cardio boxing tracks
Round 3 – 2 Squatting tracks
Round 4 – 4 cardio squatting and dance tracks
Round 5 – 2 arm tracks
Round 6 – Cool down track

For effective weight loss, how often would you recommend new mums head to a KONGA class/workout?
You would want to be doing a KONGA class 3 times a week, however that’s not always possible so do 1 or 2 classes a week and perhaps take away some of those moves and do them at home.

What would be your top 3 tips for mums wanting to lose their post-baby weight?
1. Time – don’t put pressure on yourself to loose the weight straightaway… do it the right way.
2. Losing weight is about consistency, consistently working out and consistently eating the right types of food.
3. Find a class you love, it shouldn’t feel like a chore or punishment for what you have eaten. You should enjoy it!


The Jungle Body with Kat 

Kat teaches Konga in Wimbledon, London on Tuesday nights at 7.30pm – plus there’s parking.
To book yourself onto Kat’s class, click here
To learn more about Konga Fitness, check out www.thejunglebody.com

17 signs you’re seriously obsessed with the scales

  1. You want to weigh yourself after every big poo, just in case it’s a 2 pounder.
  2. The best time to step on the scales is after your morning wee and butt naked.
  3. You want to weight yourself once a week, but reality is several times a day.
  4. What the scales says can completely alter your mood.
  5. You get excited to see a new kind of scales on the market, but fear buying an expensive set will reveal how obsessed you are.
  6. Sometimes you hide your scales to stop yourself jumping on them, but you soon get them out again.
  7. Sometimes you ask someone else to hide the scales for you, then you lose your sh*t when you want them back and they won’t give in.
  8. You could talk about weight and scale fluctuations all day, every day. “One time I put on 10lbs in a day, but the next morning I was a 1lb down! Crazy”.
  9. If the number on the scales goes up your first thought is water retention or a big poo in your system, it’s hard to admit that maybe the curry and booze the night before had anything to do with the increase.
  10. When you’re in the zone you love that feeling of jumping on the scales and seeing the number go down.
  11. But the best feeling is seeing that number go down into a new stone.
  12. You stand up straight and hold your stomach in when you weigh yourself, just in case there’s some air trapped in there that might add a lb or two.
  13. If you’re not happy with the number you see, you weigh yourself again – best out of 3 eh?
  14. When you know you’ve been unhealthy you cross your fingers and pray to the scales god, before stepping on to see the damage – or if you’ve been lucky enough to get away with it.
  15. You take your Fitbit off or anything else that might weigh you down, like a hairband, before accepting the final number.
  16. You pray for the poo fairy to visit you before your ‘official’, weekly weigh in.
  17. You move the scales around the floor to find that sweet spot for success where the number is lowest – take that uneven floors.

 

Images courtesy of giphy.com and pixabay. 

Could a Japanese diet help you lose weight?

I’ve heard a rumour that Japan recommends 17 servings of fruit and vegetables every day – 13 portions of veggies and 4 portions of fruit. As I don’t always reach the UK’s recommended target of 5-a-day, I now feel a little pathetic on hearing their goal. So, I’ve challenged myself to up my fruit and veg intake and here’s how I’m getting on…

My experience of eating 17-a-day

Poo
Who needs Pootea when you’re eating this much fruit and veg! TMI – I’ve never been so regular! However, the initial increase was maybe a bit of a shock to my system and I did have a slight stomach ache after a few days – thankfully the discomfort didn’t last too long. Note to all, increase portions gradually.

Energy
I’ve felt so much better for eating more fruit and veg. I’ve always known they’re good for you, but the difference as been pretty incredible (after having a few weeks of not consuming as many as I would normally). I’m sure my skin has improved already, too.

Creative cooking
Given a target so high has made me more creative with how I prepare my portions of fruit and veg. Before my challenge I’d have an apple, banana and veg sticks. Now, I’m including more fruit and veg at every meal. Breakfast in particular has been a tasty eye-opener – I’ve enjoyed a mash up of onions, mushrooms, tomatoes and some kind of green veg, piled on top of a slice of toast with eggs. Lunch and dinnertime meals have been more filling with the addition of extra cooked veg and fruit has been great to snack on or treat as a ‘pudding’, thanks to the natural sugar in the stuff.

More full and less sugar
The increase has left me feeling more satisfied after my meals and less prone to snacking and craving sweet things. I’m not saying my sweet tooth has disappeared but come the evening I’ve realised I’ve gone all day without reaching for my usual chocolate fix. I then eat some chocolate!

Let’s go Japanese!
Whatever the number, there’s no doubting that fruit and veg in your diet is a positive thing for good health and weight loss – if that’s your goal. I’ve enjoyed the self-challenge to eat more of the stuff and will let you know on what the scales reveal next week!

Can you walk your way to weight loss?

In this post I’d like to pay homage to walking – yes, that free and simple thing you do to get from A to B. It’s the first form of exercise I did after having a baby and it definitely helped me build my fitness, lose weight and feel better (especially when I had no idea what I was doing as a new mum).

Plus, there are a lot of other benefits for you and baby…

Walking and weight loss
Like lots of women I really struggled to walk towards the end of my pregnancy. Walking was uncomfortable, awkward and terribly slow. Once my little one arrived I thought things would go back to normal fairly quickly but that wasn’t quite the case.

I had my recommended six week check up with a doctor and was given a thumbs up to start being more active. I thought I’d give running a go (as I used to jog pre-pregancy), but that really wasn’t a good idea. It hurt a lot and definitely didn’t resemble any kind of running style I’ve ever seen before! I had to start from the beginning – step by step – and that’s when I really became obsessed with my Fitbit. Walking was my main form of exercise and even now when my weight goes up a little or stays as the same, it’s often when I haven’t walked as much.

Is 10,000 steps achievable?
The recommended number of steps to walk each day is 10,000, which may sound like a crazy amount, especially if you desk bound with work and so on. That said, I’m often surprise at how many i’ll complete just getting ready to go out and about, or if Ii’ve given the house a clean the house. If you couple that with a ‘scheduled’ walk, it doesn’t take too long to reach that 10,000 step goal.

Walking with a baby
When my daughter was small, walking with the buggy was also a good way to encourage a nap if needed and she slept really well during our walks. She’s now 2-years-old and likes to walk (run) just as much as me. Nowadays we’ll take the buggy with us as she still gets tired after a few sprints, but it’s a great excuse to get out, feel as though I’m exercising and I’m sure it helps her sleep through the night. (Which has taken us a long time to achieve!).

Plus…
Walking often can dramatically decrease how at risk you are from type 2 diabetes, a stroke and even certain types of cancers. So it really is pretty amazing. For a full list of the benefits take a peak at the NHS website.

Can you walk your way to weight loss?
Yes! I strongly believe you can and walking is definitely an underrated form of exercise. With that in mind, let’s go for a walk!

The 80/20 weight loss method

In recent years I’ve heard the phrase ’80/20’ when it comes to healthy eating habits and weight loss. It’s all about being healthy for 80% of the time and I guess letting yourself off for the other 20%. I’ve struggled to come to terms with it, as surely any amount of time being unhealthy will just sabotage your weight loss efforts, won’t it? Here’s what happened when I followed the 80/20 approach to weight loss.

My weight loss following the 80/20 method
The week before last I vowed to embrace the 80/20 method and let myself indulge a little more at the weekend, but I was to eat well during the week and keep up my exercise. As usual, I got a little carried away once my ‘indulging’ time approached. I felt angry at myself for a moment and thought “why would I ‘waste’ being ‘good’ Monday to Friday, to simply gorge for a few days”. I was certain I’d hate the scales come my next weigh-in but I actually lost 1.5lbs.

Looking back on this week as a whole, my ‘bad’ days were really not that bad and I should probably spend more time reflecting on the bigger picture, to stop myself spiralling out of control*; which is what I feel like most of the time when I eat a little more than what I perceive to be a healthy amount for me (or if I have a treat food).

Less guilt, more food
One pleasant side effect of the 80/20 rule for me was the lack of guilt I felt when I did enjoy some more treats or have bigger serving size than usual. Allowing myself to be ‘off plan’ for 20% of the week felt quite liberating. Without the 80/20 mantra circling my mind, I would of beaten myself up about those extra treats until my next weigh-in. Life is too short to not enjoy the foods you love (ha, is that the piggy in me talking?) or to overly stress about it – strive for good health, everything in moderation and surely the rest will follow.

Skinny people eat chocolate, too
It has also occurred to me that there are plenty of slim people out there who drink wine and eat chocolate. This has been quite a revelation for me! It means one day I too could be slim and still enjoy that stuff, without putting on 7lbs every time someone invites me out to dinner, or if I fancy some Nutella (that stuff is so good!).

So here’s to the 80/20 rule and to being kinder on ourselves as we aim to lose weight and feel good about ourselves. It is ok to have a treat and to not stress about ‘unplanned’ treats either. There’s plenty of time to rectify any situation.

Chloe x

*Another confession
I started this post last week and as I finish it off to publish I’m very aware that I wasn’t able to go to my Weight Watchers meeting this week, and I’m pretty certain I’ve abused the whole 80/20 thing! Spiralling out of control food wise is exactly how I feel at this very moment (alongside being bloated); but this post has been good for me to re-read and I’ll approach being kinder to myself once more and get back on track. 

What my healthy day looks like

I’ve shared a lot of details about my eating habits when I’m off plan (chocolate, chocolate, chocolate) but maybe not enough about what I eat when on I’m track. So here is a typical healthy day for me, and all of this adds up to my Weight Watchers allowance of 30 SmartPoints.

Breakfast: Porridge made with a banana, water and a splash of skimmed milk. Plus a coffee with skimmed milk.

Lunch: Chicken salad with a brown sandwich thin toasted and torn up to become ‘croutons’. Finished with 150g of strawberry Skyr yogurt, some fruit and vegetable crudités.

Dinner: Two lean Heck pork sausages with potato mash, butternut squash waffles (finally got my hands on some of these), broccoli, gravy and baked beans. Plus a Weight Watchers chocolate bar.

Snacks: Fruit, Veg, tea/coffee, cereal bar

Workout: On this particular day I also managed a 20 minute buggy run with my little one (now I’m just showing off).

Voila, there you have it.

What do you think of my healthy day?
I would love to hear your thoughts on my healthy day and what does a healthy day look like to you? Leave a comment below or leave a message on my Facebook, Instagram or Twitter page.

Chloe x

4 simple weight loss tips to keep your diet on track

Despite feeling really motivated last week, I managed to put on 1lb. However, I’m feeling strangely positive about it. That gain was a reminder that losing or maintaining weight does take a little effort and when I think about last week, I was pretty slack in everything I now know helps me to lose weight; and those things are…

1. Recording what I eat before I munch
Seeing what I’m about to eat written down in some shape or form makes it real and helps me to determine if its worth consuming. That may sound odd, but sometimes when i’m about to track ‘another bar of chocolate’, it makes me stop and reach for something healthier… or just stop. It’s also surprising how much I forget if I just track in my head.

2. Keeping an eye on my portion sizes
I can eat a lot, be it healthy or unhealthy stuff, so for me weighing out certain foods like pasta or having a sensible amount of bread is pretty key. I also find it helpful to look on the packets of foods to see what they recommend as a single portion.

3. Chocolate in moderation
I love chocolate and can eat far too much of it in one sitting. I’ll never want to cut it out completely, and I don’t think you need to for good health or weight loss, but I can certainly go over board with it.

4. Walking
Walking is such a great way to keep active but I definitely haven’t been reaching my step count, so I’ll make a bigger effort this week to chase my daughter around (she’s definitely been exceeding her step count) and keep my ass moving.

Once again, I’ve shared some ground-breaking tips that you’ve probably never heard before.

7 weight loss confessions after reaching goal

Hello! It’s been a little while since I posted about my weight loss journey and I have a lot to fess up to…

1. I’ve been high and out of control on post-baby weight loss
At the end of March I reached my first major weight loss goal – my pre-baby weight. This meant I had finally lost the full 5st I had put on during pregnancy; and what’s more I had lost way more than I had anticipated in that same weigh-in – that meant I was actually under my goal. I was so delighted.

2. I bought a ton of new clothes in a smaller size
A while back I realised that I often celebrate occasions with food, so this time I made a small promise to myself to pick up some new clothes when I got to goal, instead of a piggy feast. Shopping for a smaller size was liberating (and expensive), but in the same week that I made it to goal, I was due to go out for my husband’s birthday. So I used that as an excuse to buy an outfit for the occasion.

3. I was probably at goal for a day
Only thing is, we managed to stretch out my husband’s birthDAY for a good week or so, with lots of booze and takeaways. And then it was my daughter’s second birthday, and although she’s not on the booze yet, we continued to drink and eat very, very merrily. Then it was Easter and well, because I was ‘at goal’ and now apparently invincible to weight gain, I might have got a little carried away (aka. definitely did get carried away) with Easter eggs, hot cross buns and anything edible with a bunny picture on it. I was so full of chocolate come Easter Sunday, that I had to go to bed early accompanied by a stomach ache and headache!

4. I missed my Weight Watchers meetings
While all of this was going on, I had to miss two of my Weight Watchers meetings – which is never, ever a good thing for me. The weekly meet up and weigh-in really does help me to stay on track and it gives me a much needed boost to keep going.

5. I’ve been making a ton of excuses for my piggy eating ways
I basically got to goal and fell off track hard, gorging on all the foods I know I should have just a little of. To start with it was fun, but I soon felt very sick and out of control – oh, and very spotty!

6. I really am a chocoholic
I had a feeling this may again after a month or so at being at goal, but I genuinely didn’t think I would be capable of such indulgent ways the minute I got to goal! It’s made me realised that I might have a little more work to do when it comes to my relationship with food!

7. I’m back on track
Thankfully I was able to my Weight Watchers meeting this week and I’m back to tracking what I eat, planning my meals in advance and moving more. Plus, I have a new, working Fibit after my previous one literally fell apart on me just days after getting to goal. I’m setting myself another challenge to stay at goal for at least 3 months (once I get back to goal that is). The ideal would of course be at my goal weight for the rest of my life, but the what would I blog about? Only joking, but this feels like a manageable, baby step goal to set myself as part of my maintenance journey. I’m currently 2lbs away from that pre-baby weight figure.

Until next time…

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