This year is a big year for me, from October I’ll officially be done studying which means getting organised and finding a job!
I thought I would share a few tips on how to get yourself organised.
TIP 1: Buy yourself a diary
I know some people who look at me funny when I whip out my diary, usually because nowadays a lot of people just use their calendar on their phone. I suppose it’s handy as you always have your phone on you, but I prefer a paper diary because I’m glued enough to my phone as it is and it gets annoying having to type every tiny detail! I suggest you get yourself a small diary that fits in your bag, and if it isn’t enough for you then you could always have a monster diary or planner at home that you update every few days!
TIP 2: Make to do lists
I absolutely love to do lists. There is nothing more fulfilling then ticking something off my list. In the Christmas sales I found a “to do list” book – I didn’t even know they existed! It’s a flip notebook and you can tear out the pages too if you need to. If you want to be extra organised give yourself a deadline to each task.
Tip 3: Write a list of your finances every month
As I’m currently learning how to drive, all my money is going on lessons. Every month I plan how much money I’ll be spending and what on; this is so helpful as if you realize your money might not reach to the end of the month you can re read what you’re spending your money on and cutting (or postponing) the least important thing.
TIP 4: Reply to your emails quickly
If I don’t reply to an email straight away, it sometimes takes days for me to get onto it. Replying to emails quickly means it’s one thing off your mind and you look efficient and organised to the person you’re replying to!
This is a bit of a late post, but a few weekends ago I did a Kinesiology Taping course.
It’s a special tape that you use to support ligaments, relieve tensed muscles, or make them work more efficiently! It’s a lot to take in as you have to know all the muscle insertions and origins, and I was obviously too tired as on the same weekend as I almost cut the top of my thumb off using a bread cutter machine, hence why this post is late. I got my thumb glued back together and it’s healing nicely 🙂
You can generally use whatever colour you want, although they do have a “meaning”: the blue tape relaxes the muscle, the red tape makes the muscle work more and the black tape is for ligaments (any other colour doesn’t mean anything). Of course the colour of the tape doesn’t affect anything, but if you get taped by various people it’s easier for the people to know what the person did before by looking at the colour! In order to relax or make the muscle work harder, it depends on how you tape the muscle, as there are certain techniques.
If you see anyone walking around with a funny tape on their body you now know what it’s for! Have you ever tried it?
Since my exams I’ve haven’t been eating that healthily, so it’s time to get back on track! Here’s my to do list, maybe it will motivate you too?
1. Eat more fruit and veg!
During my exams I literally ate all the cookies in the world and comfort food like mac and cheese. Time to get back on track! I’m going to drink my veggie juice everyday again as I’ve been neglecting my juicer and get some inspiration for healthier vegetarian meals, if anyone has some meal ideas let me know 🙂
2. Drink more water and buy a new water bottle!
I wrote a post a while ago where I drank at least 1.5 litres of water a day. I was in Italy last week and because you can’t drink the tap water there my water consumption decreased (not to mention the hotel only had lukewarm water for tea! 😦 ). I now drink green tea every morning and I’m planning on buying a new water bottle that I can re use that has no plastic toxins.
3. Plan Christmas Presents!
I know I know, Halloween hasn’t been yet, but I’m so excited for Christmas this year. I think it’s because here in Munich it’s getting so cold and so it already feels like Winter. I’m flying back to England on Christmas Eve which means all presents have to be bought here and taken with me, so it’s better to get organised now whilst I have the time 🙂
4. Plan some new workouts
Last week I did absolutely no exercise (apart from running around Venice) and I really hate the feeling of being a couch potato. It’s time to plan more workouts for this blog and also for the classes I teach! I’ll be teaching a Christmas dance aerobics class in December so if anyone lives around Munich more details of when and where will be coming up soon.
5. Find Amelie a new partner
My rabbit Amelie has been alone for a few months now after her brother Hector died. As rabbits love company I’ll be adopting a rabbit from the animal rescue centre so she has someone to play with again! Let’s just hope Amelie will actually find a rabbit she likes – sometimes it can be hard to bond rabbits and Amelie is especially picky.
That’s all for this month! I love writing to do lists; it makes me feel organised and it seems a lot easier tackling it in smaller chunks.
I know I haven’t posted anything in ages, I’ve been so busy as I write for another blog and I was in England over the Summer. I thought I would just wait until I have time to write a post properly before I start writing a quick post about anything! Now I have a little more time I’m going to be dedicating it to this blog, as I have missed writing it 🙂
I got an early birthday present from my parents whilst I was in England this Summer – a Fitbit!
A fitbit tracks your movement and sleep, counts your steps, how many calories you’ve burnt, how many flights of stairs you’ve gone, how many km you’ve gone and it has a cute little flower that shows you how active you are! In your sleep it tells you how many times you woke up and if you were restless. You get an online account where you can set weight goals and meal plans, letting you make a food and water diary and check if you’ve burnt enough calories each day. You can also download the app so you can add food to your diary on the go.
Did I forget to mention it sends you cute little messages? Mine are in German but it says “Good morning” “Larissa” “Love yourself”. If you’re trying to get fit then this is such a great little device to keep you on track. I’m not trying to lose weight and I don’t have a meal plan, but I find it interesting anyway to see how active I’ve been everyday!
To anyone who already has it, I have no fitbit friends! Send me a request if you want 🙂 you can find me here.
If you have any thoughts on the Fitbit then I’d love to hear them below!
A few months ago I decided to up my water levels to see if I could feel the benefits of drinking 1.5 – 2 litres of water a day.
What are the benefits?
You feel more awake – not drinking enough means dehydration, leading to fatigue. Drink more water and you could feel more awake during the day!
It speeds up your metabolism – your body is made up of 60% water; when you drink enough you get rid of toxins and studies show it speeds up your metabolism. This means drinking enough water and having a healthy lifestyle could help you lose a few pounds.
It gives you a better complexion – this is the same reason as above: your body is 60% water and when you drink water studies claim it will “plump” up your skin. Water also flushes out toxins and therefore can give you clearer skin.
Headaches and migraines disappear – sometimes the cause of a headache/migraine is simply because you don’t drink enough water! If you have this problem try drinking 1.5 – 2 litres every day and see if it helps.
Stops dehydration and pointless eating – it is very common that when we get dehydrated our body tells us we need food. If you’ve eaten enough during the day but start to feel hungry, try drinking a glass or two of water. If you still feel hungry afterwards then you know it’s real hunger!
Tips on how to fit 1.5 – 2 litres of water in your day:
If you aren’t used to drinking water then it can be tiring to try and force yourself to drink it. Here are some tips to help you:
Carry a one litre bottle of water with you
This is a good way to measure how much you’re drinking. If you always use a glass you might lose count of how many glasses you’ve had and this way you will always have a bottle with you on the go! I found a clever 1 litre bottle that’s short but wide and small enough to fit into my bag.
Herbal tea counts as your water intake
So long as you don’t add anything to it (sugar, honey, sweetener) then it counts as your water intake! There are also great benefits from drinking herbal tea such as green tea to boost your metabolism, peppermint to refresh/detox your system and ginger or chamomile tea to reduce headaches. My favourite brand is pukka tea, they have lots of different teas that taste amazing! If you have English breakfast tea with milk and sugar, replace it with herbal tea – you will have drunken your 1.5 litres in no time!
Always keep water with you
I know this problem – you’re thirsty but you just can’t be bothered to move! I keep a bottle of water with me all the time wherever I go. My boyfriend once asked where my bottle was as he was surprised he couldn’t see it (it was hiding behind a pillow). He then announced that the bottle was like my child, as it never leaves my side!
Swap your water for fizzy drinks
I’ve never been such a fan of fizzy drinks, but there are some people who drink them on a regular basis. If you’re one of those people try swapping them purely for water for a week and see what happens. I suggest you also add some fruit to your day to avoid getting low blood sugar (as your body misses the sugar from the fizzy drinks).
After a week of drinking a minimum of 1.5 litres a day I was surprised to find that when I woke up in the morning I was very awake. I’m usually someone who has to be dragged out of bed in the morning! I most certainly felt a difference with my energy levels and on weekends I rarely carry on sleeping after 9:30am. Drinking more water has turned me into a morning person!
The disadvantage was I had to go on the toilet a lot. This is however competely logical and temporary. You are drinking a lot more water than your bladder is used to! After a week or two my bladder got used to the change and I no longer have to go on the toilet every hour.
Other than the energy levels I didn’t notice anything else. I rarely get headaches anyway and my complexion didn’t improve as far as I could see. I started drinking more water in May (2015) and I’m happy to say I’m still drinking a minimum of 1.5 litres a day. Although I only noticed a change in my energy it was definitely worth it as it was such a significant difference. If any of you try upping your water levels let me know if you felt a difference!
There are so many people who try to lose weight but never succeed, I’ve formulated a list of very common mistakes that will hopefully help any of you wanting to lose weight and have a healthy body!
Watching the scales like a hawk.
Many people who want to lose weight solely base their weight loss on how much they literally weigh, although this sounds logical it can be a massive mistake. Unless you are actually very overweight, there is no need to check how much you weigh everyday! If you aren’t technically overweight but feel the need to lose a few pounds, you can do this very simply by eating healthily and doing exercise. The reason why you shouldn’t go by what the scales say is because once you start exercising, you gain muscle. Muscle is heavier than fat so what happens is at first you gain weight. The more muscle you have the more fat you burn and therefore you will tone up and lose fat.
Starving yourself from carbs/all food.
Just from the title you should know this is a bad idea! When you deprive yourself of food your body goes into starvation mode. This means when you do eat something (even if it’s something light like fruit of veg), your body will automatically put it in it’s fat reserve… making you gain fat rather than lose it. Avoiding all carbohydrates is also a bad idea as this is what gives you energy, what you should be doing is avoiding simple carbohydrates: You digest these quickly, they don’t have much energy and therefore you’ll be feeling hungry after a short period of time. They can be found in foods such as white bread, white rice, sugar, cake, white flour and fruit juice. Complex carbohydrates are great as they are high in fibre and take longer to digest which makes you feel fuller for longer, a few examples are: brown rice, wholemeal bread and pasta, wholemeal flour, nuts, lentils, kidney beans, potatoes and spinach.
Going on a diet.
Technically, there should be no such thing as a diet. If you do decide to go on a diet and eat healthily for a month or so you might just lose weight! The thing is, you should carry on eating healthily afterwards. If you think “Yay! I’ve met my weight target”… it doesn’t mean you can go back to eating Mcdonalds every other day. This is called the Yo Yo Effect and is very common, and also very logical as to why it happens. You eat healthy and exercise – you have a healthy body. As soon as you have a healthy body, you fall back into your old habits and therefore gain weight again. The trick is to not think of it as a diet. Your nutrition and exercise regime is a lifestyle that you should be basically doing forever.
Eating the right food but not exercising
If you want a healthy body you should be exercising as well. A lot of people think it’s enough just to eat healthily, but with exercise you can get a healthier body faster and many health advantages! Cardio increases your metabolism rate (making you lose weight faster), decreases the risk of heart disease and strengthens your legs, bum and tum at the same time. Weight training is also good as it builds muscles, making you look toned and as I said before, the more muscle you have the more energy you need – which burns calories and fat quicker. Find a sport that you particularly like (whether it be running, Pilates, weight lifting, spinning etc) and once you’re having fun you won’t think of doing sport as a chore.
Eating fat free products.
This is a mean trick made by the food market industry. It says “fat free” or “light” on the packet and you think you’re deciding on the healthier option, but the real truth is that there’s a lot of hidden sugar in these products. Just think, if they take all the fat out of a yoghurt for example – they’re going to need to put a lot of artificial stuff in to make it taste as good as it was before! It is also very often that they put gelatine in the product to thicken it – a little tip for any vegetarians out there. The next time you buy a fat free product have a look at the ingredients. If you see any of the following: sucrose, fructose, lactose and maltose then they are all sugar. You might be thinking, “okay.. but sugar isn’t fat, so it’s not that bad is it?” but as I mentioned before sugar is a simple carbohydrate, meaning it leaves you feeling hungry quickly. Also these are artificial sugars, they are high in calories and can lead to weight gain rather than weight loss. Ditch the fat free yoghurt and light coke and instead eat healthy fats such as avocado, eggs, nuts or fish.
So there are my five mistakes to trying to lose weight! The main point is to think of losing weight not as a weightloss diet plan, but a new, healthier lifestyle for yourself – that isn’t a short term plan but a permanent change. Can anyone relate to these problems or has another problem they would like to add?
I’ve created a small workout for you guys who are looking to tone up your arms. I haven’t added the typical press ups as when I started doing sport I couldn’t even manage one press up! So if you have the same problem that I had, then these are the perfect exercises to strengthen your arms and get ready for real press ups. The main targeted area for this workout are the triceps – the muscle underneath the arm that everyone wants to tone to stop it from wobbling. I haven’t added any exercises that include the biceps, mainly because you need weights to be able to do this and so it will be coming in a different post. 😉
Exercise 1: Single Arm Side Push Up
Muscles you’re training: Pectoralis Major and Minor (pecs), triceps brachii (arm muscle), errector spinae (back muscle), external and internal oblique (side stomach muscles), abdominis rectus (abs), deltoid (shoulder muscle).
Exercise 2: Tricep Dip
Muscles your training: Triceps brachii, errector spinae, pectoralis major and minor.
Exercise 4: Standing press up
Muscles you’re training: pectoralis major and minor, ticeps brachii, abdominis rectus, deltoid.
Variation of Exercise 4:
Exercise 5: One sided standing push up.
Muscles you’re training: pectoralis major and minor, ticeps brachii, abdominis rectus, deltoid.
All exercises listed:
10 Side push ups on each arm.
10 Tricep dips.
10 Standing press ups.
10 Standing press ups with the heels up.
10 One sided standing press ups on each arm.
And that’s all of the arm workout. Aim to do this at least 3 times a week and you’ll be ready to do press ups in no time. It’s only 3 minutes long so you can do it any time during the day! If you’re feeling extra motivated try doing it twice a day. Hope you enjoy it and let me know what you think 🙂
Which muscles you’re training: rectus abdominis, transversus abdominis, errector spinae (back muscle), gluteus maximus and minimus (bum muscles), hamstrings (back of your thigh), gastrocnemius (calf muscle) and hip adductors.
Exercise 4: On all fours
Which muscles you’re training: rectus abdominis, gluteus maximus and minimus, hamstrings.
All exercises listed:
Here’s a quick check list so once you know all the exercises you can just skip to this bit.
10 crunches bending and stretching the right leg
10 crunches with the right leg stretched to the ceiling
10 crunches bending and stretching the left leg
10 crunches with the left leg stretched to the ceiling
3 rounds of crunches in the circle – right diagonal, middle, left diagonal, middle
10 times doing the bridge – lifting your hips up, lifting your heels, lowering your heels and lowering your hips.
10 times on all fours lifting the right leg up and down
10 times on all fours lifting the left leg up and down
And that’s it! You’ll be done in around five minutes. If you don’t have a yoga mat then you can use a towel instead. Please note that only doing this workout won’t magically give you abs or a bum like JLo, it depends on your nutrition and if you do any other exercise as well – but this workout will of course help you reach your goals! I hope you enjoy my mini workout and I would love to hear what you think of it 🙂
I’m working on a little workout to share with you, but in the meantime I’ll give you a quick update on my day to day life as a fitness trainer.
First up I now teach cheerleading to 8 year olds. I did some cheerleading back in England (nothing amazing like the cool american cheerleaders!) and I’ve been wanting to teach dance for ages but I’ve never found anything/I was too busy to really look for jobs, so I’m so excited to start teaching it next week. I’ve dug out some old photos of when I was a cheerleader at the Windsor Royal Tattoo, a show to celebrate the Army, Royal Air Force and Royal Navy in front of the Royal Family!
If anyone has any cheer music suggestions that are suitable for 8 year olds then please share them in the comment box below! I’ve already found some songs but it’s crazy how many songs are inappropriate for children.
I’ve also been offered a job from September onwards teaching ballet for four year olds and I’m currently rehearsing for a German crime series, in which I’ll be dancing in! We’re filming the end of May so once it’s out I’ll be able to share more info about it with you 🙂
Other than that I’m teaching four days a week as normal and in school we’ve started learning our dances for exam time that starts in September! How’s your month going?
If you’ve read my “About” page then you probably already know I teach fitness classes like pilates and aerobics. But I didn’t always have such an interest in sport. Actually, when I was younger I hated it when Mum dragged me in a sports shop – but now I buy more sports clothes than normal clothes.
I’ve danced my whole life: ballet, tap, contemporary and jazz. Although they gave me coordination, balance and happiness for some reason they never really gave me strength. I didn’t have muscles and I didn’t feel strong either.
The photo above on the right was me two and a half years ago, compared to a photo I took a month ago. Since doing sport I feel stronger, I feel a difference in my body and I can even do a press up now! I’ve actually stayed the same weight the entire time, even if I have lost fat I’ve gained muscle and toned up, so it’s not all about losing pounds on the scale. In fact, if you start exercising your weight will first go up as muscle weighs more than fat anyway, so first you gain muscle and then lose fat. The more muscle you have, the quicker your body burns fat!
The thing is, everyone is different. Some people dance their whole lives and have a six pack! For some reason it didn’t work for me, but I’m so happy I found other training and sport that is making me stronger, I still dance too and I now feel more in control with my body than I did before.
I’m very excited to post again as I’ll be posting what I get up to as a fitness trainer and also include workouts and workout tips! If you have any wishes for what workouts you want then leave a comment below and let me know.