3 Tips for a Happy, Healthy Holiday

  
|| H O L I D A Y S || Tis the season to keep getting in my Pilates workouts! (Photo courtesy Balance, Your Pilates and Yoga Studio)

Maintaining my usual fitness routine while traveling and spending time with family is a challenge. I literally have to sneak out of the house to get my workouts in while my family wants to feed me all day!

Having a similar dilemma? Here are 3 Tips for maintaining an active and healthy lifestyle during the holiday season!

1 — Go to the grocery store and purchase healthy eats to keep in the house during your stay.

Thankfully my dad has a nutribullet and always keeps fresh and frozen fruits, veggies, oats, and almond milk in stock. Although I go out to eat a lot when visiting home, I still am able to make my green smoothies in the morning for breakfast and have healthy snacks between meals.

2 — Find local gyms and fitness studios to go to for workouts.

When I travel, I always take time to do some research on studios nearby the location I will be staying. It can be fun to find new places to workout and I also get to meet new people in different cities and countries. I will often take an hour long pilates, yoga, or other type of group exercise class where I will still be close to family and friends.

  

3 — Encourage friends and family members to exercise and eat nutritious foods.

Going for walks, bike rides, taking group fitness classes, and exercising at home is a great way to be active and spend time with your family. Share fitness tips and some of your favorite healthy recipes with your loved ones. I enjoy showing my dad smoothie recipes and learning some of his as well. I also love teaching my little cousins pilates and yoga (pictured above).

 
Wishing you a Happy & Healthy Holiday Season!!! Angilique xo

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Move of the Day: Heel Grab aka Double Leg Stretch

  
|| HEEL GRAB || aka Double Leg Stretch!

Robert Brace of D28 For Life, taught me one of his dance inspired core workout moves called the Heel Grab. In Pilates, we call this exercise Double Leg Stretch, that is part of the abdominal series also known as the Series of 5. This is a go-to move for toned abs!

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1 — Start by lying supine with the knees into the chest and arms along sides. Curl the head and shoulders off of the mat and engage the abdominal muscles by pulling the belly button in towards the spine.

2 — Inhale to extend the arms back and legs forward on a diagonal, keeping the head and shoulders lifted. Exhale to bend the knees in towards the chest as you grab the heels (or hug the knees).

  
3 — Repeat 8-12 repetitions, 1-3 sets.

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Modifications: If this exercise causes any lower back pain, modify the movement by shortening the range of motion. Have the arms and legs extend towards the ceiling rather than having the legs low and arms behind the head. You can also modify by keeping the legs in a tabletop position or having the knees bent with feet flat on the floor as you move the arms back and forward.

If you have any neck issues, rest your head on a pillow rather than having it lifted or place the hands behind the head for support and just perform the movement of the legs.

Chaturanga Tights by Athleta & Free-to-Be Bra by Lululemon

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Fit Tip: Plan Your Meals!

  

  
|| PLAN || Meal planning is essential in keeping a healthy diet on track, can encourage weightloss, and saves time and money! Spending just an hour or so every Sunday prepping your meals means you will be less likely to grab junk and fast food when your schedule gets hectic during the week.

An example of what I pack for lunch is salmon, green beans, black beans, and avocado over brown rice (photo above). 

For snacks I like to pack fresh fruits and veggies from my local farmers market like cucumbers, green beans, and tomatoes (photo above).
“Like” Pilates Angel on Facebook and follow me on Instagram @imyourangil to get more meal planning ideas!

Fit Tip: Stretch Back on Stability Ball

  

(Photo by Audrey Lackey)

Incorporating stretching into your daily workout routine is essential as it can increase flexibility, range of motion, and can prevent and relieve pain. The stability ball is a great tool and one of my favorite props to use for both strengthening and stretching. Try stretching your back on the ball following these simple steps:

1 — Start by sitting on the ball and walk your feet forward, keeping the knees bent until the ball is under your back with your shoulders and head supported.

2 — Lying back on the ball, keep arms by your sides and knees bent about hip width part or extend arms back and straighten the legs for a deeper stretch (as pictured above).

3 — Hold the stretch for 20-30sec and repeat 2x.

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Fit Tip: Stand Up Straight!

 

(Photo by Fitness Magazine) 

Stand up straight! Practicing good posture keeps your bones and joints in proper alignment and can prevent back and other muscular pain.

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BLS Blog Post: Workout Buddies Werk!

  

Workout Buddies Werk! Find out why in my article on the BodyLanguage Sportswear blog:

http://www.bodylanguagesportswear.com/why-workout-buddies-werk/

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