All posts by Erin

What is “HIIT” anyway?

Since my website launch I have had loads of questions about HIIT – High Intensity Interval Training. (HIIT) is one of the top fitness trends for 2014; it seems everyone is talking about it! So what is all the hype really about? What is it with HIIT?

HIIT is a training technique which involves alternating between very intense bouts of exercise (in which you give maximum effort) and low intensity exercise or “active recovery” periods. This type of training gets your heart rate up and burns more fat in less time!

Super-efficient HIIT is the ideal workout for a busy schedule whether you want to squeeze in a workout before heading to the office or you are looking to get in shape for a special event. Research shows you can achieve more in a 20 minute interval training session (completed 3 times a week) than you will achieve by spending hours on a treadmill. Physiologists have yet to fully understand why this is, but one reason may be the so-called “afterburn” effect. Known as EPOC (Excess-Post Exercise Oxygen Consumption), HIIT increases your metabolism and burns more calories for up to 24 hours after training.

This means you’ll still be burning fat even after you’ve left your training session!

HIIT may also have other benefits including:

  • Feel younger both inside and out! HIIT stimulates production of your human growth hormone (HGH) for up to 24 hours after a session. This is great news since HGH is not only responsible for increased caloric burn but also slows down the aging process, making you look and feel younger!
  • Get Fitter Faster! The amount of oxygen your body can use (oxygen uptake) is increased during HIIT sessions so your overall aerobic capacity can increase faster than with low intensity endurance exercise. This means you can get fitter faster!
  • Quick and Convenient! Long gone are the days of not having enough time for exercise, most HIIT workouts can be done in 30 minutes or less! Who can’t spare that?
  • Achieve a strong healthy body! Anyone who has been on a diet or undertaken long steady state cardio sessions knows that it’s hard to burn fat without losing muscle mass making it challenging to achieve a strong healthy body. Studies show that by combining HIIT workouts and strength training we can preserve muscle mass whilst we burn fat!

Are you ready for a challenge? For more information on The Restore Fitness & Wellbeing 30 minute HIIT sessions contact us now or lookout for our spring promotion!

What is the best food to eat before a workout?

My clients often ask me to recommend a great pre-workout snack, it’s important to select a snack that produces energy, provides adequate protein and is quick and easy to make.

 

If you are looking for a personalized plan, it’s always best to see a nutritionist however I am happy to share the philosophy I find works for me!

When I’m planning my pre-workout meal I prefer to leave between 45 minutes to an hour between fueling up and warming up! This is a personal preference and may depend on the intensity of your work out; some people find they need up to 90 minutes to ensure they don’t feel ill during a particularly hard session. I find the most important factors that affect my performance are adequate sleep, hydration and good quality nutrient dense foods.

Here’s a few of my favourite pre-work out choices:

Atlantic Salmon & Sweet Potatoes

I try to eat easily digestible, non-dense carbohydrates. Increasing carbs replenishes your glycogen stores, the most important source of energy for exercise and essential for HIIT training. I steam or roast my sweet potatoes in bite sized pieces and keep them stored in an airtight container in the fridge for quick and easy access.

Salmon is one of my favourite sources of protein and very high in vitamin D which promotes calcium absorption in the gut – this is one of many factors that play a role in hydration and normal muscle function. When cooking salmon for dinner I like to make sure I cook a few extra pieces for my pre-workout meals.

Looking for something lighter? Try these quick and easy options!

Watermelon and Brazil Nuts

1 to 2 large slices of Watermelon (organic is always best) and 2 handfuls of Brazil Nuts.

According to recent studies watermelon before a hard workout can help reduce your heart rate and DOMS – delayed onset muscle soreness. That’s because watermelon is rich in an amino acid called L-citrulline which the body converts to L-arginine, an essential amino acid that helps relax blood vessels and improve circulation.

Watermelon will also provide fructose for the immediate energy spike around workout time as well as easily digestible carbohydrates for accessible energy.

Brazil Nuts are low GI and nutrient rich providing a great quick boost of calories, protein and mono-unsaturated fats (good fats) ideal for an intense workout.

Hardboiled Eggs, Organic Green Apple & Blueberries

I always have half a dozen free range boiled eggs in the fridge for a quick and healthy snack – my daughter loves them in her lunchbox too! Combining 1 -2 pre-cooked eggs, an organic apple and a small handful of blueberries provides a pre-workout snack rich in protein, good fats and fructose to give you the benefit of fast and slow burning energy.

So fuel up and get the most out of your next workout!

Yours in wellness…………………

Erin Heath

Welcome to Restore Fitness and Wellbeing

Welcome

Hi – Welcome to the Restore Fitness & Wellbeing blog! This blog is dedicated to sharing new research and ideas as well as discussing the philosophies of Women’s Fitness, Nutrition and Wellness. I believe the human body is designed to move and that Wellness is a life long journey based on an understanding and respect for your own body. My vision is to help women improve their health, fitness, functional movement, self-confidence and general wellbeing. Together we will explore the latest thinking in training philosophies, nutrition, scientific research, and the many and sometimes confusing new trends that emerge in the industry. I will include motivational and fun images, quotes, and stories plus some of my favourite recipes to ensure you don’t get bored!

Yours in Wellness

Erin Heath