6 Stretches You Should Do In Bed To Energize The Rest Of Your Day

6 Stretches You Should Do In Bed To Energize The Rest Of Your Day

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Many of us start the New Year with plans to pretty much revamp our entire lives, and while it’s  great to have lofty goals for ourselves, sometimes it’s useful to start with making a few small and practical changes. You might think it doesn’t get any easier than stretching, but it does… how about stretching right from the comfort of your own bed??  :)  

When your bed is as comfy as mine, you may just not want to get out. Some of you guys know that we have an Endy mattress, it's been almost a year since we purchased it. We decided to make the jump from a Queen to a King sized bed and I am so glad we did. The mattress is super comfortable and holds well with our very active little monkeys jumping and flipping on it all the time. So I can def attest to the fact that it will hold up to the stretches below.

Try these moves first thing in the morning and you’ll be reaping the rewards for the rest of your day.  It’s such a simple yet effective way to to get your blood flowing, wake up your muscles, and centre your breath, body, and mind, so you can go about the rest of your morning with more clarity, calm, and focus. 

1. Elevate legs against wall/bed frame

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2. Seated spinal twist

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3. Full stretch to knee hug   <click right for carousel>


4. Bridge hold (bring arms together underneath your body)   <click right for carousel>


5. Plank to Downward Dog   <click right for carousel>


6. Cat/Cow stretch   <click right for carousel>


7. Cobra stretch   <click right for carousel>

Hold each stretch for about 30-45 seconds. As you hold the stretch, don’t forget to take nice deep breaths into your belly and diaphragm. Try to feel your stomach expanding and contracting as you breathe.

Also keep a water bottle by your bedside every night so you can easily drink some first thing in the morning to start your day hydrated.  Not only does this jump-start your metabolism and help flush out toxins, but it also helps wake you up! I definitely feel more alert once I’ve had 1 or 2 glasses of water to start the day :)

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Be sure to give these a try!  :)

 

 

How To Skip (Like A Boss)!

If you’ve ever watched a video of someone skipping and thought to yourself “There’s just no way I can do that”, well think again.  Jumping rope isn’t some magical talent that only certain people are just born with. It’s a skill, and (just like any other skill,) the more you do it, the better you’ll get.

 Outfit: Hyba activewear

Outfit: Hyba activewear

I’ve been skipping ever since I was a kid and it’s something I’ve always loved coming back to so I do have a fair bit of practice. At the same time though, I’ve also had clients who’ve never skipped before in their life, but once they learn the basics and practice a bit, they find their groove and soon they absolutely love doing it.  It’s definitely worth trying out, since skipping is such a great cardio and conditioning exercise, helping you strengthen and tone your upper and lower body at the same time.  You can literally do it anywhere, and it torches calories at about twice the rate as jogging (a 10 minute skipping workout can burn 150 calories).  

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So if you’ve ever wanted to skip (like a boss), here are a few of my tips to help you get started:

1. Length of Rope -
 It’s really important to make sure your rope is the right length for you. The best way to measure the rope is to place the centre of the rope under one foot, stand straight up and bring both handles straight up. Ideally, the top of the handles should end at your armpits.

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2. Holding the Rope Properly - Grip the handles at their midpoint somewhat firmly.  Keep your elbows in (close to your body), and stand up straight with your shoulders relaxed. Turn the rope mostly using your wrists (and your elbows to a lesser extent).  Avoid swinging your entire arms in giant circles, as that will give you less control and actually makes the timing of the jumps trickier.

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3. Jump low to the ground - a common mistake that beginners make is that they jump too high (since they feel they need to clear the rope).  Remember, the rope will actually be hitting the ground each time your body jumps over it, so you actually only need to jump a little bit to clear it. If anything, jumping higher will only raise the height of the rope, making it more likely for it to hit the back of your legs. Keeping your feet low to the ground will help you maintain more control throughout the entire movement.

4. Get into a Rhythm - Think of skipping like a dance and find your rhythm. You can either do this to the beat of a song, or to an internal count in your head. Jump on the balls of the feet (the front part), and try to focus on staying light on your feet.  Finding your rhythm is one of the toughest parts, so don’t get discouraged if it doesn’t happen right away.  Just keep practicing, starting at a pace where you feel you have control and then slowly increase your speed from there.

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5. Practice-Practice-Practice - As I mentioned before, the more you practice, the better you’ll get. Don’t worry if you keep tripping up, remember that you’re still getting in a good workout and burning calories even if you’re pausing every time you make a mistake.  Consistency is key, try to practice a little bit each day (even if it’s just for 5 minutes) and you’ll see steady improvements in no time.

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You can track your workout in one of 2 ways.  One approach is to skip for time (aim for 1 minute to start, and see if you can increase it by 30 second intervals every few days... if you can get to two sets of 5 minutes straight that’s quite an achievement).  The other approach is counting the number of skips you make (either in total, or the number you can get in a row without tripping up).  Try to aim for 10 at first, and see if you can get to 100 skips straight.  

And remember to always wear clothes that are comfortable and allow you to move. These Joggers have extra stretch and this long sleeve top are great, they allow me to move but still keep in place with all my jumping!

So don’t be shy, just grab a rope, find some space, and give these tips a try. Happy Skipping!!

Outfit details: Hyba Activewear

 

5 Stretches you Should be doing

You guys know I'm all about those super tough workouts. From Boot Camp to CrossFit to HITT, there's few things I love more than putting my body through a gruelling workout and that awesome can't-sit-down-or-climb-stairs muscle soreness I feel the next day. But as great as those intense workouts are, it's just as important to stretch out those sore muscles after a workout. In fact, for most people who work out regularly, chances are that stretching is the most important thing they’re not doing. Not only does stretching help your muscles recover faster, it improves our balance and range of motion, not to mention lowers our risk of injury.  

 HYBA Activewear

HYBA Activewear

It’s important to practice ‘safe stretch’  :)  You don’t want to deeply stretch muscles too much without first warming them up a bit.  That usually means at least some light activity beforehand (walking, jogging, skipping) to get the blood flowing.  I personally prefer to stretch at the end of my workouts, so I know that my body and muscles are ready for whatever stretch/bendy/flexy goodness I’m about to throw at it.  I also like to incorporate some stretching stretching and flexibility movements into my workout itself.  Make sure to wear clothes that support your full range of motion.  Try not to rush through the stretches and remember to breathe through them.  Also, as with anything else, it’s important to know your own body.  Know your limits and don’t try to go too deep.

Here are 5 great stretches that you can include into your workout routine and even do daily.

1. Couch stretch

 hyba activewear

hyba activewear

This is a great stretch for your quadriceps (the large muscles at the front of your upper legs).  These muscles are constantly shortened from all the sitting that we do, and that can eventually lead to hip or knees issues if they’re not stretched back out.  

Make sure your knee is on a soft surface (like a yoga mat or carpet), put the other leg out in front to stabilize you and pull the heel of the back leg up to your glutes. Stay upright and hold the stretch.  You can elongate the stretch in quads even further by pushing your hips forward a little.

2. Hip opener

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Just like it says in the name, this is a great stretch to open up the hips ;)

First open up the knees as wide as you can and lean forward trying to rest your elbows or even your forehead on the ground in front. Take a nice deep breath in and press the hips down towards the ground. As your body gets closer to the ground you’ll feel the hips opening up. Hold this stretch for about 6-8 deep breaths.

3. Shoulder capsule stretch

 Wearing Hyba tights and sweater

Wearing Hyba tights and sweater

This is a great stretch to release tension in the back of the shoulders and can even help alleviate some types of neck pain. Start in the tabletop position (on all fours) and extend one arm under & across the body, past the other arm. Lean into your shoulder and the weight of your body will give your shoulder a deeper stretch. You can move in and out of the stretch with the breath, pushing more weight into the shoulder as you exhale to get a nice deep stretch. Hold for 6-8 deep breaths and repeat on the other side.

4. Deep lunge with lateral reach

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This is a such a great stretch for the entire front of the body as well as the obliques, especially for those of who slouch. This stretch helps open up the front body and helps with any tightness in the quads, hips and chest.

Get into a deep lunge position, either with your back knee resting on the ground or hovering off the floor. With the same arm as the back knee reach and stretch up, across and over the body leaning slightly to the opposite side of the body. If you need a bit of help with balance try resting the front arm on the front knee. Go for 6-8 deep breaths, bringing the arm back to your start position each time and reaching across with each exhale.

5. Shoulder 'Y' Stretch

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We’re always hunching forward, whether it's on our phones, driving, on our computer, or leaning forward to play with our little ones. Our shoulders get rounded and closes up our body, slouching us forward. This is a great stretch to open and loosen up the shoulders.

Start seated on the ground sitting up nice and tall with your legs . out in front and knees slightly bent. Now slowly start walking your hands out behind you into a 'Y' formation. You will start to lean back, the wider and further you go the deeper the stretch. You'll definitely feel this in the front of your shoulders, that's a good thing! Go for 6-8 reps, starting at the top and walking your hands back each rep. You don’t have to go too deep to start.  Hold it where you start feeling the stretch and then slowly work your way deeper.

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Be sure to give these awesome stretches a try, incorporate them into your workout routines and be consistent. A little each day and you will start to see your body loosening and opening up. You will also notice how much more effective your workouts are, you'll be able to lift more, have better form and recover faster!

Yours in Health, 

Zehra

 

Outfit details : 
Tights -  Hyba Printed Namaste Leggings
Top -  Hyba Hooded Popover
(use the code 20ZEHRA to get 20% off your order on Hyba activewear)

Photographer :  
Masooma Ali (@em__ali)

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