Get Fit For The Mad Dash Without The Gym
Quite often we don’t have time to get down to the gym or out into the park for a run – life just gets in the way. When this happens, try this 15 minute exercise routine; it is a great way to blow off the cobwebs and have a whole body workout using just your body-weight. Plus its great prep for The Mad Dash. The basic idea is to do each exercise for 1 minute with a minute rest after each set. For example:
1. As many press up as you can do in 1 minute
2. As many lunges as you can do in 1 minute
3. As many dips as you can do in 1 minute
4. As many squats as you can do in 1 minute
5. Take a full minute rest and take on some water
6. Repeat twice if your are a beginner, but if you are advanced you can repeat up to 4-5 times
Some Tips on Technique:
The standard press up is a great exercise, utilising most upper body muscles and is a great test of upper body strength. A quality press up is about having arms a little wider than shoulder width apart and ensuring you keep your body straight. Be sure to brace your core throughout the movement trying not to let the the hips sag down. As you lower yourself down, keep your head in neutral position and chest out and press down until your chest is a few centimetres from the ground and then press upwards until arms are locked out at the top range of movement. For beginners, try doing the same exercise but with knees resting on the ground – this will allow you to build up your strength before taking on a full press up. A good target to aim for is to be able to do 3 sets of 10 repetitions.
The lunge is a great natural movement and is superb for the lower body. For a good lunge, ensure you are wearing stable footwear or barefoot and step forward with your leading leg. With legs apart slowly lower your back knee to the floor whilst keeping your body upright and head facing forward. The idea is to allow the knee to sink so that you feel the exercise working the muscles in your quadriceps and bum muscles (gluteus maximus). Once you have completed the movement, push back using your front leg back into a standing position and repeat on the opposite leg.
Using a park bench or chair, position yourself so that your arms are holding the edge and supporting your body weight, with your legs facing outwards. Slowly lower your body down so that your elbows bend to 90 degrees and your bum is slightly off the ground (keep your back close to the chair or bench as you lower yourself down). At the end of the range of movement, push with your arms to raise yourself back to the original position.
One of the best movements for all round lower body strength. With feet slightly wider than shoulder width apart, brace your core, bend at the knees and pivot at the hip so that you lower yourself into the squat as if sitting down on a low chair. It is important that knees don’t stick out over your toes so that you don’t put too much pressure on your knees and that you keep your back straight throughout the range of movement. When you upper thigh is parallel with the ground, you are at the lowest range of the squat and you should squeeze your bum and thighs to lift yourself back up to an upright position, pushing your hips forward as you return to standing.
The Mad Dash Crew
Well, as promised in our first Blog, as well as telling you about us and our events we’re also going to share some of our favourite receipes! Yes, we exercise a lot here which is great because it means we can eat a lot too! But we always make sure its as healthy, nutritious and fresh as possible.
Here’s one of our favourite treats though – and it certainly passes the test of our kids!
If you’re looking for a healthy and nutritious alternative to sugary cereal or bread then why not make this quick and very easy Mad Dash Banana Loaf. Just whiz up the ingredients and pop it into the oven! Smother with healthy peanut butter for long lasting energy! Gluten and wheat free. Makes muffins or a loaf. Tried and tested recipe!
3 ripe bananas
220 grams of almond flour (ground almonds)
2tsp of cinnamon
1tsp of bicarb soda
1tsp of vanilla extract
25 grams of ground flax (linseeds)
1 tbsp of lemon juice
30 grams of pure butter
2tbsp of maple syrup or raw honey
Pre-heat oven to 170c and use a 9×5 inch pan or a muffin tin
Melt Butter in a pan and allow to cool
Mash bananas in a bowl with a fork, add eggs, butter, maple syrup, lemon juice and mix well
Add remaining ingredients and stir until combined (mixture should be thick but not too stiff)
Pour into your lined baking tin and cook for approximately 45 minutes (less time if cooking muffins). If it goes brown quickly, cover with foil and continue to bake until cooked. You can test it with a knife (it should come out clean)
Allow to cool and serve with peanut butter or butter
Store in an airtight container in the fridge