An 18 year old girl, fitness enthusiast and dedicated Olympic style weightlifter, Powerlifter, and non-competitive Irish dancer. I'm determined to live a healthy lifestyle and take care of my body whilst influencing other young people to do so. I never doubt my ability to achieve something; I just change what I'm doing until I succeed.
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Sorry for the lack of posts recently, i've been extremely busy revising for my PE exam coming up on Tuesday. This has meant that I've had to only focus on School and not so much on Fitness and blogging. However, it's important to be able to step back from revising and have a break. My break often involves working out, Weightlifting, Running or Irish Dancing. This can also be the same if you find yourself being too active when you're suppose to be revising. Continue reading to find out more tips on PE revision and how to balance your workout and learning time.
Revising too little
It took me a while to make time for revision as I'm very active often throughout the day. But it must be done, especially if you have exams soon. It may be difficult to stop your fitness routine completely, so perhaps try shortening how many exercises you're doing or complete them at different times of the day. For example, instead of exercising just in the evening, you could try completing half of your workout in the morning and the rest throughout the day. This will give you more time to revise. I also found that some days I will have to revise more than I workout (3 hours revise, 1 hours exercise). Another trick I have found which helps if you have a tight schedule is revising in between breaks in your exercises. When I went Weightlifting I completed 5x5 sets of 4 different exercises and had breaks in between, where I completed a page of revision.
Working out too little
Don't be afraid to stop revising to treat your body to some exercise, If you can, try and go outside and soak up some sunshine. Revising can often be tedious and it's proven that after 45 minutes of revision your mind becomes bored and needs a 5-10 minute break. Working out will also give you energy and adrenaline which could in fact help you to remember more information, try not to become fatigued though as this could cause you to not complete your revision calmly. If you don't feel as if you can revise with exercises in between, perhaps try reading something todo with fitness or eating something healthy. Eating healthily is also still important when revising as its very easy to give in to junk food when sat still learning for a long time. Complete any activity that's going to make you feel physically better.
BTEC PE revision tips
I've found by using the Pearson BTEC Physical Education revision guide and workbook that I have been able to revise and remember things at ease. If you aren't able to get hold of books for your PE exam or any exam you are taking, try creating your own notes based on work you've completed in lessons or information you've found online. I created my own notes from the revision guide and it definitely helps when re reading neat notes and when you're writing them.
My PE teachers have recommended to check out a great and useful YouTube channel called Mr B. The channel includes videos which will help you to pass your PE btec exam. Whether you need a quick refresher on what the Fitness tests and components are or you need to learn how to answer an 8 mark question; Mr B has it all!
Another website I've found which is very useful is MrGillPE, the site has printable and downloadable sheets which can be used for revision. I've also found some excellent power points on the site too! I'm sure there are some more revision sites out there which will be helpful when you're revising, try searching online for the year you're taking your exam, the unit or exam board and the subject.
Thanks for reading this weeks blog post, please check out the links provided and continue to carry on working hard! It'll soon be over and with hard work, you can achieve the grades you want.
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I'm always interested in what other people have to say about workout gear and their opinions. If you don't often read fitness based material online, a post like this could be new to you. I'm going to discuss my opinions on clothing and equipment which I have tried or previously owned. Please note that everyone has different opinions and I understand that my thoughts on certain subjects doesn't always reflect everyones views.
Whether you are wanting to build a home gym or perhaps just buy a few singular pieces of equipment; equipment can be pricey. But are you really paying the correct amount for what you get? Is the quality at its best? Well from what i've purchased; prices don't mean much as sometimes the best equipment isn't always the most expensive.
York fitness weights- For years I have used various amounts of equipment made by York fitness. Their weights are made excellently and I have not yet had any cracks or splits in them. The bars haven't rusted which is a great benefit as often this can put off using your equipment if its going to get you dirty or is difficult to clean. I own a bench by York fitness but it's possible that it has been discontinued as I cannot find it on their website or Amazon page. However, the bench I own is great, not too big in size and very stable. Prices can vary for their products depending on what you're purchasing, but the sets of weights are fairly cheap which I definitely recommend checking out! I'll link their amazon page and website below as I don't think the weights I own are on the website anymore.
Gold's gym chest expander- My coach gave me this piece of equipment and I must say that its excellent and probably underrated nowadays as its very old-school. A chest expander can help warm up muscles in your body before Weightlifting or working out. Its beneficial for your chest, legs and arms but other exercises are needed to be done to build muscle; don't solely rely on the expander! The Gold's gym chest expander isn't made of metal springs which is obviously much safer for anyone with long hair or a tendency to pinch their skin in the springs. The spring are elasticated and removable so you can adjust the resistance you're using. There are many exercises which can be performed using a chest expander; I personally prefer the overhead squat. The link to the amazon page is below as I cannot find their online website or any other seller which you can purchase the equipment from.
Blue dot kinesiology tape- I discovered kinesiology tape when I shopping in sportsdirect for something which could help my muscle soreness. I recommend the brand Blue dot when buying tape as the price is great! I bought a small roll of tape for just £1 which lasted for at least 3 months. You can purchase bigger supplies of the tape in various different colours and if you don't want to buy the rolls of tape, I recommend buying specific shaped kinesiology tape for whichever body part is painful. The link to the sports direct page is below.
Karrimor foam roller- If you don't already own a foam roller, I suggest you purchases one! There are many different types of foam rollers, some which are hard and bumpy; some which are soft and light. The karrimor foam roller is great as its not a really hard roller but at the same time isn't too soft to not help atall. This roller isn't too big and is fairly light to carry; perfect to fit in gym bags and great for travelling. If you don't want a roller which will deeply roll out your muscles; I suggest searching for a softer and flatter option. The link to the sports direct page is below.
When you're exercising, what you wear can be important for some people. Fitness brands can range from many prices and often may look more fashionable rather than actually good for working out in. If you aren't sure what to wear when exercising or simply just want to update your wardrobe then checkout some of my recommendations below.
Fitness tops- When I'm working out I'll usually wear a top which is lightweight and easy to breath in. Some of the brands I like are Under Armour, Puma, Nike, Karrimor and Adidas. I tend to buy the smaller sizes in these brands as they can sometimes be quite big, however overall they come in many different colors and sometimes even have slogans on them. Prices can range from being cheap to expensive depending on where you buy them from. For example, if you went to an outlet store you may find cheaper clothing rather than buying from an expensive brands new range. When searching for fitness tops, I look for stretchy fabrics, bright colours and big, breathable neck holes.
Fitness sports bras- I often wear sports bras underneath tops but sometimes when it's hot i'll just wear them on their own. The two brands of sports bras which I've tried are from Primark and Forever 21. I did consider buying a nike pro sports bra but I thought I could buy a lot more from other brands for the same price as one. Primark sports bras are great prices (obviously its primark) and surprisingly are great quality. They come in various colours and patterns; you also have the option of padding or no padding. The only bad thing about them I've found is that Primark seem to sell and stock loads at the beginning of the new year and during summer time, but for the rest of the year there can be limited choices of designs. Forever 21 sell a great range of sports bras which are also in different colors, patterns and styles. Often these can be a bit more fashionable rather than supportive, but the padded sports bras from here are great! They may be a little more pricey than Primark's range, but definitely worth purchasing. (I'd link these below but the stores are constantly creating new stock)
Fitness shorts- Who says you can only wear shorts in the summer? If you're working out really hard, I recommend wearing shorts. I constantly live in shorts as I find them more comfortable to squat in than leggings or tights. The pair of shorts I'd say I love the most are the Karrimor run shorts, you can buy adult sizes and pink colors in the girls department but personally I preferred the look of the boys blue shorts. These shorts have lining inside which is always great and have a pocket on the back; big enough to carry a house key or some loose change. The Nike pro shorts are nice but not as breathable as the Karrimor ones. These tend to ride up on me and I often have to pull them down whilst working out. These shorts are very tight on the quads but are still decent when squatting, however wearing the correct underwear underneath is a must because i've found they can be see through. The Adidas pair are very similar to the Karrimor shorts except they are a bit more pricey. The Nike pro shorts are the most expensive out of the three pairs; all three pairs were purchased from sportsdirect. (Image is above, links are below)
Fitness overlayer- I own many overlayers ranging from hoodies to waterproof jackets. When I'm working out i'll often choose to wear my Nevica overlayer or my Nike tracksuit jackets. I purely bought the Nevica overlayer for no Ski related concept as the brand is a big skiing brand. However, the thermal layer was a cheap option from sportsdirect and I wanted to run outside without freezing my bum off! I definitely recommend checking out their overlayers as well as the Nike tracksuit tops (although nike is on the pricey side of things, the quality is excellent). I'd link the overlayer below but they don't have the exact type I purchased, this is the same for the Nike jackets.
Nike free 5.0- If you know me well, you'll know that I own far too many pairs of shoes and it's something I take pride in. My favourite pair i've purchased for working out in (not including running) definitely is the Nike free 5.0. The shoe is very stable and not too flexible. I've had my pair for around 2 years now and they haven't broken yet! The paint at the tip of the shoe has begun to wear, but this is common when wearing shoes constantly. I haven't tried other shoes from the Nike free collection, but I have heard great things about their benefits for exercise. When looking to purchase shoes for fitness, avoid anything with a huge heel as sometimes this can cause injuries when jumping or completing fast movements. You can buy the shoes from Jdsports for a reasonable price but I bought mine for a mere price from Tennisnuts.com. They tend to specialise in Tennis equipment but are a reliable supplier for trainers. The link is below to the site.
Thanks for reading this post and I hope you've decided to purchase some more fitness clothes. This proves you can buy workout clothes for a reasonable price, rather than buying expensive but fashionable alternatives. But if you want to spend a lot of money on these types of things, by all means go for it! Even I do sometimes. Apologies for any links being unavailable.
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I haven't posted very often at the moment solely due to the fact that school revision has been taking up a lot of my time as I have Physical Education and Health exams soon. Once upon a time I didn't have much of clue how to create a workout, I did the exact same thing every day which consisted of about 100 situps. Gradually I started creating different workouts but they were still quite repetitive. But at the start of this year I decided to change my awfully repetitive workout scheme, to focus on an individual body part per day. I also managed to fit in a rest day into my schedule as it's important to rest your muscles so they have time to repair and develop. I made sure that there are at least a three day rest period between each specific muscle workout. In this post I'm going to discuss my three workouts which I repeat twice within a week.
Arm day (Mondays and Fridays)
On Mondays and Fridays I do Olympic lifting, so I thought it would be appropriate to make those days my dedicated arm days. The repetitions and sets can change often depending on how hard I'm finding the exercise and as they gradually get easier I increase the resistance of the training. The following workout is what I complete on those days (not including my lifting sessions):
Ab day (Tuesdays and Saturdays)
Tuesdays and Saturdays are usually the days when I'm fed up from Monday or having some sort of cheat day, I felt they were most appropriate for ab days because I realised that I feel mentally encouraged and better by seeing my body at its very best. Therefore on these days when I feel low, I can really see my abs pop and it encourages me to keep on going when times are tough. Who needs fitspo posts when you can be your own fitspo motivation!
Leg day (Wednesdays and Sundays)
On these days I tend to go for runs, so why not make it my leg day too. I couldnt have it the day before my run as I'd be too sore the day after, this is the same as for the day after my run. I would say I enjoy running but training my legs isn't my favourite thing to do, but it must be done as you want to build muscle in all areas. Training your legs is especially important for an Olympic Weightlifter as you need to be able to drive up from your squat when lifting. I admit this is often what stops me from achieving PB's; proportionally my arms are stronger than my legs!
Whilst I'm working out I always make sure I have a bottle of water near me and afterwards I always eat something. Many times after working out if I'm not satisfied, I'll also complete a HIIT session by following an online tutorial. I hope you enjoyed reading this post (please note if the names of exercises aren't completely accurate due to many different names and versions of each exercise, I have solely gone off what I call them). I also understand that many people may not be able to afford the equipment I use or are able to have access to equipment, I appreciate and know I am very lucky to have access to weights and other fitness based objects. Equipment is not needed to maintain a healthy body!