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By Bing Pilates, Apr 13 2017 12:04AM

Summer is almost here but before it gets in full swing, have you considered a detox? Here are some detox tips that you can try out for a day or two to get you feeling tip-top...

1) Drink green juice — freshly juiced veggies and fruits are fantastic at cleaning out your body. If you don't have a juicer at home, there are plenty of high street food places that serve juice drinks. Have a juice that contains some greens first thing because fresh and raw veggies are full of live enzymes that help clean out your cells and refuel your body.

2) Drink water and lemon — get into the habit of starting your day with a big glass of water with lemon right when you wake up. Lemon is detoxing, alkalizing and gets your metabolism geared up. Every function in our body runs on water, including elimination and cleansing, so it's important to drink it. Aim to drink at least two litres of water a day (more if you exercise).

3) Eat a raw lunch — you can have veggies, nuts, sprouted grains, seeds, cold-pressed oils. Any salad will do. If you’re a meat eater, you can add a lean meat like chicken breast or fish, but don’t add processed marinades or mayo. The more veggies you eat, the more cleansing power you give your body.

4) Eat a clean dinner — like lunch, you should keep your plate full of raw or lightly cooked veggies and keep the extra sauces and oils to a minimum. You can have some cooked food like rice or a lean meat, but if you have one then don’t have the other. Keeping your meal organized to contain either starch or protein will help your digestive system efficiently process your healthy meal.

5) Avoid all of these — salt, sugar, coffee, dairy, artificial sweeteners, wheat and alcohol. If you can give up these for a day, you'll feel the difference. If you go longer than a day, then you'll get superpowers. That might have been a lie, but you'll definitely feel great at the very least!

6) Take a daily probiotic — probiotics are good bacteria that help reduce inflammation and prevent infection. Healthy bacteria like this will keep your entire system in balance so you can detox efficiently. Plus they boost your immunity. Have as much probiotic rich, fermented foods such as sauerkraut, kombucha, kimchi, greek yogurt or tempeh. Or if not, take a probiotic supplement every day.

7) Have lots of good sleep — aim for at least 7-8 hours a night at the best of times. But when you're detoxing, you should really try and have at least 7 hours a night. Because the more tired you are, the less energetic you will feel. And you need rest to restore your body's energy. So sleep well!

Stay tuned for more blogs soon...

By Bing Pilates, Jan 10 2017 03:13PM

How many times have we been told to "stand tall" or "sit up straight"? Ever wonder why we're told that so often? Here's why...

1) For a kick off, a good posture will help you look younger.

2) Correct posture gives your internal organs more room to function more efficiently and helps prevent organ prolapse (which is a condition where your organs slip down your body).

3) Studies have shown that people with a strong posture are more efficient at producing happy thoughts.

4) You'll look slimmer and with it, improve your confidence.

5) It'll help you actually lose weight because you are taking the tension off your body and so everything in flowing better.

6) Neck pains, back pains and headaches will be prevented, as well as the prevention of future injuries.

7) It will improve your overall core strength through the regular use of your postural muscles.

8) It could improve your memory. A study found that babies’ learning ability is in fact affected by their posture. Being upright improved their ability to map new experiences and remember things.

9) Sitting upright also makes you more alert, concentrated, and productive. Because when you slouch, your body takes in as much as 30% less oxygen than with good posture. Ergo slouchers have less energy.

Conclusion? Do Pilates (because it's great for your posture).

By Bing Pilates, Dec 20 2016 10:13PM

We looked at how to improve your morning routine recently. So it's only fair to the moon and stars that we look at ways to improve your bedtime routine to give yourself the best chance of having a cosy night's sleep. In fact Joseph Pilates himself wrote in a book advice on how to sleep better, so let's start there...

1) Environment — your room should be cool, quiet, well ventilated, and dark. Your mattress should be firm and your pillow not too bulky. Also, don't use too heavy a cover — use the lightest cover possible to make you warm. Thanks, Joseph.

2) Reduce blue light — exposure to light during the day is beneficial, but at night it has the opposite effect. This is due to its impact on your circadian rhythm, tricking your brain into thinking it is still daytime. Blue light, which comes from things like mobile phones, TV and laptops is the worst in this regard. Try not looking at any of these at least an hour before you sleep.

3) Give up caffeine — not forever! Just late in the day. The stimulation of your nervous system from drinking it may stop your body from naturally relaxing at night. If you're really desperate for the beans at night, try a decaffeinated coffee instead.

4) Give up booze — again, not for all eternity! Just not in the evening. You may think that it helps you nod off better, but it will disturb your sleep pattern once it wears off.

5) Make sleep a priority — don't banish the land of nod to something you *groan* "have to do". Embrace it and get a schedule going so that you are in bed and ready to sleep at the same time each night (as much as possible). Without regular good sleep, you'll be half the person you are. Or zombified at best.

6) Don't sleep with work — leave all traces of your daily work outside of the bedroom. This ties in with the previous blue light tip. Don't lie in bed with your laptop doing work late at night— it might only serve to stress you out and bed is your place of peace and harmony. Remember, work is not your life and has no place in your bedroom.

7) Eat light in the evening — a heavy meal too late on in the evening won't help you drift off when bedtime comes a-knocking. Try to finish eating big meals at least two to three hours before hopping into bed.

Until next time, readers...zzzzzzzzzzz......

By Bing Pilates, Dec 9 2016 02:49PM

So you've been doing Pilates for a while now (or maybe you're new) and you're getting pretty good at it (or you will do). But did you know that every exercise you're doing is based on six core principles from the man himself, Joseph Pilates...

1) Centring — this is defined as physically bringing the focus to the centre of the body, the powerhouse area between the lower ribs and pubic bone. A strong centre ensures a good spine, and a good spine brings power to your movements.

2) Concentration — Pilates asks for your full attention. If you bring your mind to each exercise and do it with full commitment, you will obtain maximum value from each movement. Joseph Pilates saw his techniques as "coordinating mind, body and spirit".

3) Control — Joseph Pilates described his program as 'controlology'. Every exercise is done with complete muscular control. No body part is left to its own devices. It is all a conscious, deliberate movement that the mind is controlling.

4) Precision — alignment is essential in Pilates. Awareness is sustained throughout each movement. There is an appropriate placement and trajectory for each part of the body. The idea is that by doing this, you will prevent injuries.

5) Breath — Joseph Pilates emphasized using a very full breath in his exercises. He advocated thinking of the lungs as a bellows, using them strongly to pump the air in and out of the body. Most Pilates exercises coordinate with the breath, and using the breath properly is an integral part of Pilates exercise.

6) Flow — Pilates exercise is done in a flowing manner. Fluidity, grace, and ease are goals applied to all exercises. The energy of an exercise connects all body parts and flows through the body in an even way. The connection you feel during sessions and the momentum each movement creates gives Pilates a sense of flowing energy.

Stick to these ideals when you do Pilates and you won't go wrong. Stick with us and read our next blog soon...


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