Fall Fitness – Tips for an active Autumn/Winter

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Moving into a new season, especially Autumn/Winter is a transition which isn’t always an easy one. The days are getting shorter and darker, the temperature is dropping and motivation levels can be low, especially now that the clocks have gone back.

But… it’s also a great time of year to reflect on where you are on your fitness journey, even if you’re only just starting out. Where would you like to be in your training when the daffodils start popping up and there’s blossom on the trees? Believe me, if you start now and work through the colder months you won’t regret it come Spring/Summer ‘16.

With some tips to help you through, let’s fight the urge to curl up every evening on the sofa, or snooze the alarm in the morning… getting out from under your duvet when it’s cold is a struggle (I’m a PT who loves her bed), but the rosy cheeked achievement of being bad ass and completing your workout makes it all worthwhile…

Tips for Autumn/Winter training…

Shake up the routine – If you’ve been meaning to try that dance class or fancy a bit of Animal Flow, find a session and give it a go. Alongside your training programme, shaking up the routine could be the perfect way to stay motivated throughout the colder months ahead and you might just find something you really love. Don’t be afraid to try something new, just move, play and enjoy!

Sweat in style – The right training gear is key and a great excuse to buy some gorgeous kit for the new season. All motivation is good! I would recommend bagging yourself a thicker pair of leggings (you too boys), some thicker or longer trainer socks and layers for your top half. As you get sweaty you’ll probably want to peel off, but post workout it’s really important to be warm!

My fave brands for keeping warm and stylish include:

fizzYcaL1fizzYcaL – An independent brand close to my heart, with a mission to celebrate every day fitness heroes, fizzYcaL also sell amazing quality fitness wear for men and women. I live in the hoodies and jumpers at the moment. In the depths of winter they are perfect for training in and during autumn they make for the perfect pre and post training layer.A workout wardrobe MUST have.

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FinisterreBase layer heaven right here. I wear this merino wool T for both training myself and when training clients – It keeps me warm and cool in equal measure and the fit is fantastic. You know what I mean ladies, nice and long in the body, flattering sleeves, great neck line. Also, definitely worth checking out their knitwear for casual style…serious lust!!

Catalyst2Catalyst Activewear – Affordable luxury active-wear in the most delicious colours and fabrics. The leggings not only keep me warm but they also add that much needed pop of colour on a winters day. The fabric is totally opaque and the quality and fit is exceptional – Catalyst is a small, independent business with a huge impact! And for each metre of material they use, a metre of rainforest is saved…Sustainable style right there!

Cashmere hat& Other Stories The best £39 I’ve spent in a long time – this cashmere beauty is so soft and warm and also looks great. Again I wear it to keep warm while training clients and in the depths of winter it stays put on my head as I peel off other layers. There’s nothing like a bit of luxury when you’re out in the cold… tip: leave on the radiator for extra snuggliness!!

Now rock that Autumn/Winter ’15 style!

Group workout sessions – Training with a group is great motivation at any time of year but if you need that extra push during the colder season and the buzz of other people getting their sweat on alongside you, it’s the perfect time to find a group. If you’re in South London, I run female only Bodyweight training & Calisthenics classes at Studio B on Brixton Hill – You can find all the information @frankieholah online or contact frankie@frankieholah.com to register – #JoinTheTribe

Stay Hydrated – Even when it’s cold you still need to stay hydrated, especially if you’re training! Our bodies are approx. 70% water so stay topped up. Herbal teas are a great option if you can’t always face cold water… Fresh ginger tea is really warming and as well as being super tasty, it’s also great for boosting your immune system and aiding muscle recovery after a workout. I love to hit Nour Cash & Carry on Electric Avenue, Brixton for ginger joy and much more yummy goodness!

The time is now…Happy sweating!

Psssst: Coming up soon on the blog – ‘How to look after your body outside of training’ & a sports massage discount for you lovely readers! Be sure to follow the blog and be the first to know more…

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Finisterre: a Frankie review

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I spend a lot of time outdoors for my job and so having a wardrobe stocked with functional (and stylish) kit is essential for surviving all seasons…

Recently I have been lucky enough to try out two pieces from the finisterre collection which have now become firm favourites.

Not only are the products great, but the vision and commitment of the Cornwall based company is something I can fully get on board with. Responsibly sourced fabrics, innovative designs built to last and a repair service if needed, because “sometimes our clothes need a spa day”. Finisterre don’t like waste and would much rather breathe new life into an old jacket than add it to landfill… Just brilliant!!

I have been wearing (a lot) the merino ‘Eddy cap sleeve’ t-shirt and the lightweight, reversible jacket which is most definitely warmer than you may think from looking at it, but this is just how finisterre roll with their insulation wear.

The t-shirt has become a staple due to its extremely flattering long length fit and incredible warmth, making the last of the fresh spring mornings much more bearable. I don’t like wearing lots of chunky layers when training people, so this is perfect. If you’re worried about the merino irritating your skin, you needn’t be…it is super soft and as someone with slightly sensitive skin, I have been pleasantly surprised.

I know that I will be getting my fitness paws on some more of these T’s for the Autumn/Winter months this year and have a feeling the long sleeved version will also come in extremely handy!

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eddy_baselayer_oyster_w_staticLayered over my merino dream I’ve been rocking the super cute reversible jacket which allows you to decide whether it’s a yellow or a blue kind of day. I have always wanted a yellow rain coat so this is my preference…

An insulator of the lightest kind, this little wonder has kept the chill off while cycling and the rain off whilst training and walking in the countryside. It has also been a total lifesaver during that awkward seasonal change over when it’s too warm for a winter coat but not warm enough to go without that extra layer…AND it rolls up teeny tiny into the zip pocket on the front, so you can pack it away in your bag if needs be.

I maaaaaaay have, ok, definitely have been perusing more of the finisterre look book for summer wear…Its making me want to head to a cornish beach right now and dip my toes in the sea…

Daydreaming aside..If you’re looking for outdoor wear which screams style and function, with the added bonus of earth friendliness, you need to check out finisterre

Happy FriYAY!!

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Join the Tribe

034_WUS_19_06_14_IMG_1712 Last month I wrote a piece titled ‘Reclaim your Body’ – The message? To live healthfully and not chase the next fad or trend; to celebrate in your uniqueness, whatever your shape or size and to train and eat well, not because you hate your body but because you LOVE your body!

This is something I feel very strongly about when it comes to female fitness and health; with so many mixed messages, unrealistic images in the media and weight loss pills flying about, so many people I speak to, simply feel lost in it all!

As I am writing this, there is a report on the radio about a young girl who tragically died from taking too many diet pills. This upsets and angers me…Firstly because people are creating these toxic & dangerous pills to sell and secondly because a young girl has become so insecure about her body at a young age that she felt she had to take extreme measures which cost her, her life.

Something needs to change and I want to affect positive change as directly as possible in the hope that it can make a difference to the way that women see and train their bodies… 032_WUS_19_06_14_IMG_1707 055_WUS_19_06_14_IMG_1835 So, as I head into chapter two of my freelance PT life, I am excited to launch Frankie Holah’s Bootcamp.

From the beginning of June in South London, you will be able to attend female only sessions based around using your own bodyweight to help improve your fitness and health…. Whatever your shape, size or fitness level, come and join the tribe, get empowered and reclaim your body!! 027_WUS_19_06_14_IMG_1622 Locations will include Brixton and Clapham with morning and evening sessions available – If you would like to come along, please register your interest by emailing frankie@frankieholah.com and keep an eye on my social media @frankieholah for confirmed days and times!!

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Female Calisthenics Movement: Media Moment

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2015 really feels like the year of bodyweight training (aka calisthenics), the style of training that I have been involved in and promoting for the past couple of years.

I have seen bodyweight training open up unexplored opportunities for women and men keeping fit, without the need for a gym membership or lots of equipment.. With busy lifestyles, this style of training removes plenty of barriers and for those just starting their fitness journey, it allows them to build confidence, body awareness, and realize their inner bad ass!!

On a personal level, I love the freedom and creativity of training with nothing but my own bodyweight.Whether I am in a park, at my flat or on the go, I can keep fit! I make the world my gym!

It is great to see female calisthenics in the media and I was delighted to appear on Women’s Health as a Female Ambassador for Calisthenics.

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Here’s to more women reclaiming their bodies and getting fit and strong bodyweight style, both in 2015 and beyond!

Check out the full article here… Women Who Workout: Calisthenics

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She Does: City Is My Playground

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Second in the ‘She Does’ series, I headed to Brick Lane to try my hand at City is My Playground with its founder Nicola Cher Geismar. We were quite literally flexing in, on and around the City!

Nicola started City Is My Playground as a creative way to stay strong after suffering a knee injury which meant she could no longer take part in break dancing. She realized that her environment, the City of London was the perfect backdrop of things to climb on, balance on and explore in a unique way. I’ll never look at a doorway in the same way again!!

After a warm up to prepare our bodies for the urban challenges ahead, we kicked off the session with some lamp post scaling, obviously… I mean is there any other way to get acquainted with this new style of training?! Once I’d got the hang of the foot placement and grip I could try out the static hold which, apart from looking pretty cool, is a challenging move….hello shoulders!!

From here it was a case of ‘what can we do with this?’. A doorway is no longer just a doorway and a telephone exchange box is no longer just a telephone exchange box, it’s a workout and a chance to improve your strength in a whole new way.

The joy is in the creative opportunities all around us if we just open our eyes and our minds…City is My Playground nails this idea!

After a great afternoon of City flexing tuition, I’ve got some new outdoor moves to add to my repertoire and I’m sure I’ll be spotted hanging from a lamppost very soon….South London, watch out!

fizzYcaL was there to capture the experience so check out the footage to get a real feel of the vibes…

Nicola runs workshops called Flex in the City and you can follow her journey and check out her bloomin’ impressive moves and flexing adventures at @Cityismyplayground

Guaranteed urban fun times!

No Gym? No problem!

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With a bit of imagination, it is possible to create a workout wherever you are and have some fun in the process. The majority of my workouts are either park based or home based. Come rain or shine I can keep fit, predominantly using just my own bodyweight and it’s FREEEEEEE!

If you open your mind and use what’s around you, the possibilities are endless. No excuses, just get outdoors and use your environment. Here are some ideas…

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Bus stop tricep dips. Simple & effective. Try 3-4 sets of 10-12 reps

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Nice little space to get some squats in off the main street – That’s right, I parked my toosh there – such a rebel! Try 4 sets of 15 reps

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Not just a bike rack…Perfect for practicing your chin up game. If you’re not quite there yet, these racks are perfect for incline press ups too. Try 3 sets of 6-8 chin ups or 3 sets of 12 incline press ups

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NB: This road was partially closed…I am not telling you to step into the road and do press ups (LOL) BUT, this is an anywhere, anytime kind of exercise. Try 3 – 4 sets of 15 reps

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I couldn’t help myself – Bit of straddle half planche fun

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And don’t forget to have a good stretch when you’ve finished your workout

London has so many exciting spaces to train in, so get outdoors (especially now that Spring has sprung), explore and soon you’ll be viewing the city as your gym!

Big shout out to fizzYcaL for the images – Check out their website for awesome fitness inspiration and streetwear

Happy training x

 

Luxe Life

 

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Leggings are my favourite and my fitness focused lifestyle allows me to wear them pretty much every day… So, when a Gymluxe shaped parcel arrived on my door mat you can imagine the excitement and how quickly the packaging was torn open revealing the new Deco leggings in plum (yum). Naturally, I put them straight on and pranced around the house, eyeing them up in the mirror from all angles.

I’m already a huge fan of this awesome British Brand and wear their Diamond Cut leggings a LOT. They’re just so sexy. The main difference for the better with the new design, is that Gymluxe have now improved the technology of their leggings to provide more muscle compression as well as greater coverage. With a really nice moderate to high waistband they hug you all the way from top to ankle.

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And now on to that famous paneling…This new shape is just all kinds of sleek and has certainly caused a few double takes in the park while training my clients. It is super flattering and I am all for a bit of tasteful skin flashing when it comes to kit. The plum colour is definitely a welcome tone in my workout and off duty wardrobe…On days off it’s perfect with my leather jacket and Nike blazers for relaxed weekend style.

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Now, I wore these beauties a lot last week and to date they have been put through prancing (obvs), full days training clients, knees & bum on the floor, hill sprint training, bar training, a weekend with my god son and Saturday shopping. So far, so good, so sexy…

I think you can tell I’m LOVING them!

If you are feeling the Deco vibes, you can shop at GYMLUXE and receive 10% off when you use the code FRANKIE10 at the checkout…discount dreams!

A big thank you to fizzYcaL for shooting the Deco in action

Love, health & happiness

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