Brooke Turner - Balance Fitness & Nutrition

Easy workouts for busy Women

DS Flex Blog #6 - Easy workouts for busy women

These days time is something we just can’t seem to find enough of. How many evenings do you go to bed with things still on your to-do list, not quite yet ticked off, left there to see another day?

 

In the madness that is life; work, chores, family and friends often get put before you. This can see your exercise and nutrition slip away, and reaching those goals harder to achieve. So with our time being precious, as well as our health and self-confidence, here are some simple workouts designed to take 20-30 minutes (and let’s be honest, we can all spare that short amount of time to focus on yourself).

 

All you need is a little bit of space and these workouts can be done, anywhere, anytime – with minimal to no equipment needed. You will be able to fit these workouts in prior to starting the day, during your lunch break, or at the park while the kids are playing or have sport training!

 

At Home:

This workout doesn’t matter if the weather is no good to be outside, the gym is closed, or the kiddies are having an afternoon nap. All that is need for this session is resistance tubing and a chair. A full body workout, despite being in the comfort of your own home - be sure to push yourself out of your comfort zone.

 

Complete all exercises with minimal rest in between. Recovery is at the end of each round once all sessions are complete. Set your timer for 30seconds and do this for each exercise;

  1. Push ups
  2. Mountain climbers
  3. Sumo squat
  4. Tricep dips
  5. Bulgarian squats – leg on chair (30s each leg)
  6. Bicep curls with tube
  7. Tube glute squeeze (standing in tube, stepping out and in)
  • 1-2 minutes rest between each set
  • Complete 3-5 times.

Optional ab circuit to complete after the block above;

  • Plank – elbows to palms x 10 ea side
  • Side plank with hip raise x 10 ea side
  • Leg raise x 15

 

At the Gym:

3 blocks of exercises.  Repeat each block 1-2 times:

Block 1:

  • Squat with bottom half pulse x 15
  • Step ups x 12 ea leg
  • Bike sprint x 40s
  • 1 min rest & repeat

Block 2:

  • Clean and press x 12
  • Medicine ball pushup x 10 ea side
  • Rower sprint x 200m
  • 1 min rest & repeat 

Block 3:

  • Pull ups x 15
  • Walking lunges
  • Tricep dips
  • 1 min rest & repeat

 

Posted by Hayley McNeil on 14 November, 2016 Exercise, Fit, Fitness, Nutrition | Read more →

Top 5 Breakfast Ideas

DS Flex Blog #5 - Top 5 Breakfast ideas


Eating breakfast daily doesn’t mean you have to have the traditional big breakfast. There are so many great ideas to get a nutritious hit, break the ‘fast’ and get stuck into your day.

 

If you are a regular breakfast skipper, don’t feel hungry in the mornings, an early starter, have a large commute to work each day, busy mum or need to eat something on the run, then these are for you!

 

These five fast & easy breakfast ideas will provide your body with essential macro and micronutrients to power through your day and get you on your way to your health, fitness and weight loss goals. All can be prepped in advance overnight or will take minimal time to create each morning at home or at work:

 

  1. Overnight oats

Ingredients

  • 1 x scoop protein powder
  • 40g rolled oats
  • 15g Chia seeds
  • 250ml Unsweetened Vanilla Almond milk

 

Method:

  • Add all ingredients to a bowl and stir well
  • Soak overnight and leave in the fridge to enjoy the next morning.
  • Alternately mix in the morning and cook in the microwave for a warm winter breaky.
  • In the morning top with a sprinkle of cinnamon and berries.

 

  1. BFN Berry Basic Smoothie

Ingredients

  • 1 x scoop protein powder
  • 50g Blueberries
  • 50g Raspberries
  • 5g Pysllium husk
  • 15g Chia seeds
  • 250ml Unsweetened Vanilla Almond milk
  • 1 x tbsp. Coconut oil

 

Method:

  •       Blend all ingredients together and enjoy!

 

  1. BFN boiled eggs & smashed avo on toast

Ingredients

  • ½ avocado
  • Pepper
  • Lemon juice - squueze
  • 1-2 slices wholemeal or gluten free toast
  • 2 x boiled eggs

 

Method:

  • Prepare your boiled eggs in advance on the weekend or the night before
  • Place avocado in a bowl and ‘smash’ with a fork until well mashed. Add in cracked pepper and a squeeze of lemon juice
  • Toast your bread, spread your avocado and top with sliced boiled eggs!
  • Add a smear of vegemite to each piece of toast for some added flavor and a vitamin B hit

 

  1. Overnight chai pudding

Ingredients

  • 20g chia seeds + ~150ml Almond milk/ water / coconut water to mix
  • 100g yoghurt – you can choose to use greek, natural, or coconut yoghurt
  • 100g berries: fresh or frozen
  • 40g oats or rice flakes

 

Method

  • Mix the chia seeds with the liquid of choice, stir well and leave in the fridge overnight. This will form a pudding like substance
  • In the morning add 100g greek yoghurt, fresh or frozen berries either whole or pureed and the oats or rice crisps.

 

  1. Smoked salmon

Ingredients

  • 50g smoked salmon
  • 1-2 pieces wholemeal or gluten free toast
  • 25g cream or cottage cheese
  • Sliced tomato

 

Method

  • Toast your bread, or opt for rice cakes/cruskits if you prefer
  • Spread cream or cottage cheese onto toast
  • Top with sliced tomato, smoked salmon and add some cracked pepper for taste

 

With these great ideas there will be no excuse to skip the most important meal of the day!

Brooke x

 

 

Posted by Hayley McNeil on 03 November, 2016 blog, blogger, breakfast, DS Flex, eat, Exercise, Fit, Fitness, Fruit, Health, Nutrition, protein, Shake, Smoothie | Read more →

THE POWER OF PROTEIN

DON’T UNDERESTIMATE THE POWER OF PROTEIN

Like its fellow macronutrients fat and carbs – protein is often followed by controversy around optimal intake, benefits and potential health effects when consumed in excess.

The optimal protein intake for building muscle, losing body fat and helping with recovery is widely discussed, and so it should be! Protein is an essential nutrient that plays an important role in fuelling our bodies during training and assists in the building and repairing of muscle tissues. But with so much information out there around high protein - low carb diets and thousands of protein supplements on the market, you might be asking yourself; how much protein should I be eating? When should I be eating it? And are there certain types that I should be consuming? All great questions to be asking as the quantity, quality and timing of protein intake are three important factors if maintaining lean muscle mass, improving recovery and weight loss / maintenance are your goals.

How much Protein?

The recommended dietary allowance (RDA) for protein is 0.8grams per kilo of body weight per day. For a 60kg female this equates to 48grams of protein per day. It is important to note the RDA is based on the requirements of sedentary individuals and represents the amount of consumption required to avoid deficiency - this is not an ideal recommendation for those pursuing an increase in lean muscle mass. Studies have shown a protein intake greater than the RDA is needed for optimal growth and recovery, and a greater requirement exists for those undertaking regular resistance exercise. This increased need is required to optimize development, repair and maintenance of muscle. For active individuals training approximately five times per week could consume 2.0g/kg/body weight per day without adverse health effects and to maximize muscle protein synthesis. For a 60kg female this would be ~120g protein per day. Be sure to spread your protein intake evenly throughout the day and try to incorporate it in every meal to allow for maximal muscle protein synthesis (60kg female, 120g/day, across five meals = ~25g of protein per meal). When it comes to protein consumption and training, a dose of 20-25grams as soon as possible after exercise is beneficial. This amount is generally found in a serve of protein shake, five to six egg whites or 80-100g of chicken breast.

 

 What type of protein?

 From protein shakes of whey, hydrolyzed WPI , casein and soy, to foods such as eggs, meat and milk, no wonder there is confusion as to what form of protein is best, and when. Studies have revealed there are varying effects on the form of protein ingested post training. It is recommended a high quality dose of protein such as dairy, egg or lean meat post workout is beneficial to maximally stimulate muscle protein synthesis. These proteins are fast digesting, so emptied from the stomach at a greater rate. This could be in the form a WPI shake, low fat milk (has been shown to be more superior over soy proteins) or pre prepared chicken breast for those that may be lactose free. These sources also contain the branched chain amino acid leucine, which has been shown to further assist with building muscle and burning fat. Casein and blended protein powders (often containing a mixture of casein and WPI), is relatively insoluble and forms a gelatinous material when ingested (or mixed with yoghurt = delicious!). Due to this jelly like property, casein has a slower rate of digestion, and promotes a slow, but steady released of amino acids into the body. Best to save casein protein for later in the day or as a ‘night time’ protein to assist in recovery overnight. Keep those fast absorbing, high quality proteins immediately post exercise.

Timing

Studies have looked into the various timing and effectiveness of protein ingestion pre, during and post workout. Many of us may consume branched chain amino acids (BCAA’s) during or ‘intra’ workout. The consumption of BCAA’s during resistance training has been shown to enhance muscle protein synthesis during exercise, suppress muscle protein breakdown and enhance protein balance during and after exercise. The biggest bang for your buck in terms of timing of protein ingestion, to promote the most favourable effect is as possible following exercise. This will assist in reducing muscle damage, enhance recovery and promote lean muscle improvements. So be sure to keep a protein shake, recovery bar or pre-packed meal in your gym bag to maximize your hard work and keep those gains.

 

Like most things in life, too much of one thing is generally never good. Make sure that you don’t replace other important macronutrients such as fat and carbohydrates with protein. If you do so, especially with carbohydrates, it can lead to a more rapid rate of fatigue, performance is likely to suffer and in extreme cases, other nutrient deficiencies can be of concern. Bottom line; if lean muscle mass is your goal, get the quantity, quality and timing right and the results will follow. Approximately 20grams of high quality protein (think Maxine’s Burn protein powder), as soon as possible following resistance training - don’t underestimate the power of protein!

Posted by Hayley McNeil on 16 October, 2016 Active, Activewear, blog, Blogger, DS Flex, Exercise, Fit, Fitness, Fruit, Health, Nutrition, protein, Shake, Smoothie | Read more →

Alcohol & Your Health + Fitness Guide

By the time Friday comes around the weekend is well and truly on our mind and a large percentage of us will have come home to unwind from the working week with an alcoholic beverage of choice.

Not only are we more likely to consume alcohol on the weekend, but it is always a large part of almost any celebration or special event – be it a birthday, end of exams, new job promotion, or just going to dinner with friends. It is something that should be enjoyed in moderation, as can have some serious health effects associated with the consumption of it. But how much does alcohol consumption really impact our health and fitness goals?

Alcohol consumption can play a large role in stopping us from reaching our health and fitness targets. Those looking to compete and elite athletes generally limit alcohol throughout competition prep or sporting seasons. Not only can it lead to weight gain, muscle soreness and decreased performance, alcohol is the second most calorie dense compound, after fat. Fat contains 9 calories per one gram, with alcohol containing 7 calories per one gram. (Fat and carbs carry 4 calories per 1 gram). Ever wonder why you have pulled up so sore following a sporting game / grand final that was followed by a night of celebrating? Alcohol can affect soft tissue and increase the likelihood of muscle soreness and can potentially delay injury repair. It also acts as a diuretic, leading to dehydration. Alcohol increases the amount of urine we produce and removes a greater amount of water from the body. I am sure we have all experienced the after effects of alcohol – the dreaded hangover; headache, nausea, upset stomach, shakiness, thirst and body aches and pains.

My tips for those of you that feel you must drink, but still try to keep on track with achieving your goals;

  • Limit your intake
  • Consume light alcoholic drinks – the lower the alcohol content, the fewer the calories
  • Avoid sugary drinks – sugars are a form of carbohydrate, the sweeter the drink, the more calories it generally contains – so sugary, full strength alcoholic drinks are not the best choice.
  • Stick to white drinks/spirits – vodka, gin. Sometimes the darker the drink, the worse the hangover – due to a presence that can lead to a hangover effect 
  • Mix your drinks with soda water – be it wine, or spirits. This will help to better maintain your hydration status
  • Factor the calories of alcohol into your daily meal plan, to try and ensure you don’t go over your daily energy intake goals – My Fitness Pal is great
  • The morning following kick start the day with a HIIT session. Yep, probably the last think you feel like doing if you have had a few drinks – but how badly do you want to reach your goals? Completing a -HIIT session will help to begin metabolising the alcohol you have consumed, and can also lose some of this through sweating
  • Avoid the greasy, processed food! Fuel your body with foods with a high water content that will help rehydrate you, and high in vitamins and minerals – think fruit salad, or a large serving of veggies 
  • Drink plenty of water


If you are serious about reaching your goals you may just have to cut back on or ditch the alcohol completely. Trust me – you can have a good night out without it and you will wake feeling refreshed and ready to go the following morning. Get your friends in on the action too – and with October just around the corner what better excuse to stay on track!

Keep your goals in check this weekend and don’t underestimate what how the regular alcoholic beverage can affect your health, fitness and weight loss goals.

Posted by Hayley McNeil on 02 October, 2016 Alochol, Fitness, Health | Read more →

Unilateral Movements

 

Squats, deadlifts, leg press; all great compound exercises that are effective in building strength and conditioning your lower body.

Often overlooked though are the unilateral or single leg movements that should be incorporated into your workouts if you are after shape, tone and strength through your lower body.

I am a big lover of unilateral movements. I find them very challenging and it helps you realise what areas or sides of the body require a little more work when they are singled out.

Unilateral movements are fantastic for:

  • Increasing your strength – that one leg has nowhere to hide and can’t rely on its buddy to help it out of the exercise. All of the focus is in the one leg at a time. When coupled with a healthy diet assists in improving muscle tone and shape of the area due to the recruitment and activation of various muscle fibres.
  • Improving your balance – standing on one leg can be challenging at the best of times. When you add movement into that or some added resistance it will really challenge both your balance and posture, leading to:
  • Improved core strength and stability – your core muscles need to work harder and remain activated to assist in balance throughout the movements, resulting in a stronger core.
  • Assists with muscle activation and recruitment – performing unilateral movement’s forces you to focus on the specific muscle groups you want to recruit to successfully complete the exercise. This helps build that mind-muscle connection and activate muscle fibres that might normally go unnoticed when performing a normal squat or deadlift.

Some of my favourite single legged exercises for shaping and toning the lower body are:

  • Bulgarian split squat
  • Back stepping lunges
  • Side lunges
  • Single leg hamstring curl
  • Single legged press
  • 45 degree side single leg press
  • Single legged deadlift
  • Pistol squat
  • Cable kickbacks
  • Donkey kicks

When performing single leg exercises form is super important and in benefiting from the results and avoiding injury. Be sure to start with body weight or light resistance. Some of the above exercises also really challenge your balance so are great at assisting to improve this and your proprioception. To make them more challenging keep the tempo to a 1:3 or 3:1 ratio or even super slow, add in some bottom half pulses or isometric holds to really feel the burn.

Add 1-2 of these exercises into your next leg routine, or perform a circuit of 3-4 of them on a regular basis to help see some changes to that lower body.

Posted by Hayley McNeil on 17 September, 2016 blog | Read more →

Walk into a Workout

Spring is in the air, so what better time to start taking your workouts outdoors and enjoy the fresh air and a little more sunshine (hopefully)!

Walking has many health benefits associated with it but sometimes these are forgotten because it is not viewed as a workout, or you may not get your heart rate up enough to feel that you’ve worked up a sweat. Here are some tips to still enjoy that leisurely walk, but ways that you can also turn your walk into a workout:

  • Select a route with an incline or mixed terrain: rather than just going for your casual walk around the block, try to mix it up and opt for a path that has inclines and declines rather than no grade at all. An even better option is to choose somewhere with stairs or a nearby hill. Whilst it may not be a walking route, you can tackle the stairs/hill a number of times depending on your energy levels, motivation and time available.

Adding a decent incline to your walk will help to recruit the larger muscle groups of your glutes, hamstrings and quadriceps compared to the work involved when walking on flat terrain. Recruiting a larger number of muscle fibres means that your body is working harder, burning more calories and will help in toning and strengthening your lower body. Inclines are also fantastic for cardiovascular fitness as the higher intensity levels increase your heart rate and start to utilise your anaerobic energy system. It almost serves as a form of HIIT as you are on the climb (work effort), followed by your active recovery (descent). You can mix it up and take the stairs one or two at a time and striding it out up a hill mimics a lunge exercise and can assist in delivering the same results.

  • Select a route with a view/get back to nature: Have you ever noticed how the distance and time seems to pass so much faster when you are walking along your favourite coastal or bush track? Selecting a walking route with a view such as along the coast or through the bush can not only assist in providing a great form of stress relief through getting back to nature and off of the treadmill, it can also provide a source of inspiration from the countless others exercising along these paths and motivate you to go that little bit further or walk that little bit faster.

Sometimes getting into your walking shoes and out of the house can be the hardest part of your workout. Once you are out in the fresh air and surrounded by others being physically active the energy can often be contagious and you may find that instead of the 20 minute walk you barely had the energy for turns into a 30-40 minute walk. You can also aim for landmarks as your turn around point.

  • Take it barefoot and to the beach: Beach walking is a fantastic way to tone your legs, increase your heart rate and up the intensity of your usual stroll. Even if you’re energy levels are low, a short beach walk will ensure you work harder and burn more calories than you would if you were walking on a foot path for the same duration (it requires 2-3 times more energy than walking on hard surfaces).

If you are walking a long distance in soft sand you may find that your feet are sore the following day. This is due to your muscles and tendons working harder on the soft surface and increasing your proprioreception (which is a good thing!). If this bothers you though, it may be a good idea to wear a supportive pair of shoes. However just like sore muscles from the gym, they will usually subside within 24-28 hours.

Taking your walk to the beach also gives you the added bonus of taking a refreshing dip to cool off afterwards, is a relaxing way to start or end your day and you get a dose of vitamin D to assist in improving immune function, calcium absorption, and your mood!

  • Add some resistance to your walk: Keep an eye on your watch and every five minutes try to adding some of the following exercises into your walk:
    • Walking lunges x 12 each leg
    • Standing body weight squats or jump squats x 15

If you are going for a 30 minute walk that equates 5-6 sets of the above and you will certainly feel it in your legs by then end of it.

If your usual walking route has benches scattered along it, for example at a park or along a foot path, incorporate the following for every lap that you complete or every 5th bench/5 minutes (1 -2 rounds per bench stop):

  • Tricep dips x 12
  • Incline push-ups x 12
  • Step ups x 12 each leg
  • Bench crunches x 12
  • Change the speed: just as you would when performing HIIT on the treadmill, try to vary your walking speeds to utilise both your aerobic and anaerobic energy systems. Whilst power walking may not increase your heart rate to the same level that a sprint would, adding 30 seconds of a faster pace walk (work effort), followed by two minutes of your normal pace (recovery) for a lower intensity interval style workout can be highly beneficial.

The work efforts are only short lived so are a great option is you are also short on energy. If you don’t want to watch you clock to time this, aiming for landmarks is another great form of adding some power walking. Select a landmark and increase your walking speed until you reach this, then recover at a steadier pace until you reach the next identified landmark to pick it up again.

  • Weighted walking: investing in a pair of ankle, wrist or small hand weights are also a great way to add a little extra resistance to your walk to help your upper body work a little bit harder. Holding something in your hands reminds you to pump your arms which in turn can improve the efficiency of your gait an encourage you to increase your pace (hence why sprinters have such a great arm drive when they are racing). If you don’t want to be walking the streets with your light dumbbells in hand you could always take a drink bottle with you and swap arms while you are walking to help encourage you to use your arms, focus on your posture and activate your core.

If you have a treadmill at home there is no excuse to grab a set of dumbbells or weights if you have them available and try to walk for five minutes pumping these in your arms, then take 2-3 minutes recovery before picking them up again.

  • Check the beat: set yourself a decent playlist to accompany you on your walk. Choose songs of about 128BPM which equates to a brisk walk for most people. Music is a great way to keep you motivated, pass the time and keep up your pace.

There are some easy and effective ways of increasing the intensity of your leisurely stroll whilst not feeling like you have just finished a round of HIIT. Walking is a fantastic low intensity, aerobic exercise that is low impact on your joints and great for those days when you can’t quite muster the energy to fit in a run or days of active rest. Try to incorporate some of the above tips when you next set out on a walk to help turn it into more of a workout.

Name & Title:

Brooke Turner – Nutritionist & Sports Scientist

 

Credentials:

Post Graduate in Human Nutrition

Bachelor of Science (Exercise & Sports Science)

Personal Trainer & Group Fitness Instructor

Les Mills Instructor

 

Websites & social media:

www.balancefitnessandnutrition.com.au

Instagram: @balancefitnessandnutrition     #balancefitnessnutrition

Facebook: www.facebook.com/balancefitnessnutrition 

 

Posted by Hayley McNeil on 05 September, 2016 Read more →

The Power of P O S I T I V E Thinking

Our mindset and attitude can play a huge role in shaping the outcomes within our life. The way you train your brain to think not only impacts on our mood but our emotions and outcomes. Many a study indicates that positive self-talk creates positive results.

We need to train our brain just as we do our bodies. Elite athletes don’t just put in the hard yards of and complete the physical training, turning up to the big event on the day ready to kick ass. Athletes also use positive self-talk and visualization, as a crucial part in their training - behind every great athlete or sporting team will be a Sport Psychologist.

WHAT IS IT?

Positive self-talk usually consists of brief phrases or words that motivate, inspire and remind us to focus our attention to help us generate the ideal response to the particular scenario or action at hand. But positive self talk and imagery doesn’t just apply to the sporting setting, it can be used (and very importantly – should be used) in our everyday lives, for example;

  • Before delivering a presentation at a meeting
  • When getting off of the couch and getting into some exercise
  • Having a discussion with a team member or leader at work
  • Tackling the household chores and your extremely long to-do list
  • Running late for work
  • When looking in the mirror – and telling yourself that you like what you see
  • When trying to fall, or throughout a pregnancy 
  • When something doesn’t quite go your way – be it whether you spill your coffee or kick your toe on something - don't let it set the tone for your day.

EXAMPLES OF POSITIVE SELF-TALK:

  • I can handle this
  • I am strong, capable and focused
  • I can do anything for one minute
  • I am comfortable in front of people and say the right things
  • I can accomplish any task given to me
  • I can solve any problem
  • I love to eat healthy food ;)

BENEFITS OF POSITIVE SELF-TALK:

Yep there are even health benefits from speaking kindly to yourself! Some of these include:

  • Can help to reduce and eliminate stress and anxiety – improves coping skills
  • Assists in boosting confidence
  • Triggers optimism
  • Feel empowered
  • Greater resistance to the common cold
  • Better psychological and physical well–being
  • Reduced risk of death from cardiovascular disease
  • Improves performance and results!

MY EXPERIENCE WITH POSITIVE SELF-TALK: PREGNANCY, LABOR & BIRTH

I was lucky enough to have the lovely Cas from Retreat Yoga help me throughout the second half of my pregnancy, where we practiced Mindful (Hypno) Birthing – something that Cas has recently completed studies in. Many of our sessions were focused on positive affirmations, meditation and breathing. The more confronting and ‘painful’ meditations were the ones I most enjoyed and feel like these really assisted in training me to use my breath to get through the pain – just as I would during a contraction. I even got Phil to try some of these… I suppose there is a reason why women are the ones that have babies and not men ;) I left every session with a sense of calm and a ‘yep, I am ready for this’ attitude. The breathing techniques that we practiced were used that very day in the delivery room. We also incorporated visualization.I truly believe that prepping myself mentally for my pregnancy and birth through using positive affirmations, combined with meditation and breathing techniques every day helped me to deliver our healthy baby boy, naturally and with no intervention or pain relief (although I would have done whatever I needed for his safe arrival, and sometimes no matter how positive you may be things just don't always work out - and that is OK).

A lovely friend of mine got me one of the best gifts ever – birthing affirmations on gorgeous hand painted cards that I stuck to my fridge and could visualize in my head when meditating and when in labor. It also helped remind Phil of what some of my affirmations were to help reassure me during labor.

Those first 12 weeks were a killer to get through with the initial scans feeling like the only proof of my pregnancy as I was lucky enough to miss out on the morning sickness and didn’t start showing or feeling those first flutters until about 16 & 19 weeks. I was so happy to have the help of Cas to assist me in feeling more prepared for my labor and the birth of Byron, I also religiously attended her Monday night Pre Natal yoga classes that provided a great opportunity for me to connect with both my breath and my baby.  

For those that know me know that I am fairly laid back but I also don’t have too much trouble in getting anxious. From the day I found out I was pregnant I told myself that I was going to have ‘a happy, healthy and successful pregnancy’. These three key words were so important to me. I wanted to be happy over the 40 or so long weeks of pregnancy and to enjoy the experience, no matter what it might have thrown at me. Being healthy was a big one. For me I wanted to remain mentally and physically healthy and of course I wanted to be growing a health baby. But ultimately I wanted to have a successful pregnancy – to carry a baby to term and deliver them safely. I couldn’t even begin to count how many times I told myself I was going to‘have a happy, healthy and successful pregnancy’. After one ultrasound and discovering that Byron was in the 90th centile I started freaking out about how big her was going to be (he was 9 pound & 56cm). But I then came across another great affirmation ‘My baby is the perfect size for my body’. After affirming this to myself I honestly then no longer worried about how a big baby was going to get through my birth canal. When it came to labor my go to was ‘I can do anything for one minute’ to help get me through each building contraction.

I used to apply visualization and positive affirmations when I was competing in athletics and netball to help me feel more prepared for each game/event, and this was reinforced through completing Sport Psychology units as part of my study at Uni. The big event that I was training for most recently was for my pregnancy and leading up to the birth of Byron. 

POSITIVE SELF-TALK - HOW DO YOU MASTER IT?

  • Begin to notice what you are saying to yourself: and then ignore any self-talk that is not helpful (we all do it)
  • Find your personal mantra: pick a power phrase or word to assist in regaining your focus. 
  • A mantra is something you consistently say to yourself to get your self-talk to go from negative to positive – it helps get you back on track and focused on the task at hand.
  • Visualisation: positive self-talk is great, but when combined with visualization it has been shown to be more effective (cue elite athletes). Visualise the task or what you want to achieve – really see yourself performing the way you hope to or getting the outcome you desire. Instilling positive images within your head is a form of positive self-talk.
  • Surround yourself with positive, like-minded people – eliminate the negativity: they say your vibe attracts your tribe. If you surround yourself with like-minded people this can help reinforce those positive feelings.

FINAL WORD

So whether you are trying to cook a meal to impress at a dinner party, deliver an all important speech or presentation at work, perform well in a sporting event or just feel a little bit better about yourself - put your positive pants on to reap the positive results. It won’t happen overnight and it takes some time and practice to reduce the negative committee that resides in your head, but keep persisting. Positive mind, positive vibes, positive life.

SHOUT OUT AND SPECIAL THANKS

Be sure to help support these local businesses and even get along to the newly opened The Space in Karratha to attend one of the great yoga classes or workshops on offer!@APomPomADay https://www.facebook.com/apompomaday/

 

@RetreatYogaKarratha   @TheSpaceKarratha   http://www.retreatyoga.com.au         To Cas at Retreat Yoga and Jen from A Pom Pom a Day. For any expecting Mumma’s out there looking for someone local to help instill some Mindful Birthing principles get in touch with Cas from Retreat Yoga / The Space Karratha. If you are after some of your own beautiful, individual and hand painted affirmation cards, Jen from A Pom Pom a Day is your go-to lady. Thank you both for helping me on my journey!  

I'm not saying that positive thinking or self-talk will solve all of your problems, as this alone probably won't. But I do believe that a little bit of positivity and optimism can go a long way. Lately I've been relying on it when I am sleep deprived (most days). The positive is that the newborn stage does not last forever, so I will enjoy it while it is happening. 

Brooke @balancefitnessandnutrition

Posted by Hayley McNeil on 04 February, 2015 Read more →

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