Tricep Dip for Toned Upper Body

Tricep dips are a great exercise for your upper body. They not only work out your triceps, but also your shoulders, forearms, and chest.

Triceps dips can be performed pretty much anywhere – in the gym on a bench, at home on a chair, in the office on your office chair, in a hotel room on a bed in a park, the possibilities are endless.

How to perform a tricep dip:

  1. Position yourself on a bench/chair with elbows locked. Knees can be slightly bent or straight. The further the heels are from your body, the harder the exercise. Do not lean forward with your upper body and try to keep your bum and your back as close to the bench as possible.

  2. Slowly lower yourself while inhaling, until your arms form a 90-degree angle.

  3. Propel yourself upward and back to the starting position while exhaling.

  4. Repeat.

    tricep dips

I personally like triceps dips as they are very easy, yet effective, and they can be performed pretty much anywhere.

Do not have any bench or a chair around? Challenge yourself to floor tricep dips. Place your palms on the floor and make sure that while lowering your body, the only body part that is intentionally moving are your elbows – bending to 90 degrees and back up.

Check my Instagram for a short video of me performing tricep dips.

Exercise on holiday – Bulgarian split squat

Summer is the holiday season and when travelling, not always do we get a chance to do a full workout, apart of swimming in the sea or in the pool, of course. Some hotels do have fitness centres and gym, but who would even want to spend time indoor when the weather is so lovely outside? My husband is an exception 😀

So, I am bringing you a series of few exercises that you can do literally anytime and anywhere. And the first exercise is a Bulgarian Split Squat.

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While doing a regular split squat while both feet are on the floor, we rest the back foot on a bench, or anything elevated, during the Bulgarian split squat. You can use just your body weight, or you can add extra weight with dumbbells or bottles of water.

Directions:

  1. Start off by standing in front of a flat bench, or any other elevated thing like a piece of a wall that allows you to rest your foot on, with both feet together.
  2. Place one foot back on the bench in a staggered stance with your toes pointing down and the top of your foot pressing flat against the bench.
  3. Keep your chest up, core tight, back straight, and begin slowly lowering yourself under control by flexing the knee and the hip of your front leg.
  4. Once you reach the bottom position, push yourself back up and stopping just short of locking our your knee.

 

Things to remember:

  • make sure the front knee does not go over your toes while lowering your body
  • keep your back straight and your chest up
  • use your arms to help you to balance
  • breath in while coming down and breath out while coming up
  • go as low as it is comfortable for you

Benefits of Bulgarian Split Squat:

  • improves balance
  • works your lover body muscles, especially hamstrings and quads
  • workout for your core

 

Prague Health & Fitness Meetup

Having moved to Prague a month ago I miss my personal training clients and my health community that I created back in the UK.

Meetup app worked for me in the past and therefore I have decided to set up Prague Health & Fitness Meetup.

So, if you are based in Prague and you are looking to meet new people, make like-minded friends and have fun, join me!

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Running in Prague 6

On Sunday I was brave enough to get dressed in this breezy weather and go for a late morning run with my husband. It was my first run this year and the first run in few months. And I survived!

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We live in Prague 6 close to Šárecké údolí which is a lovely nature reserve where we often go for a walk with our dog. This time we decided to go for a run around Džbán lake. I wanted to show my husband the track that I walked with the dog a week ago.

You can access it from many places – walking from Červený vrch, by bus (Divoká Šárka), by tram (Džbán / Divoká Šárka) or even walking distance from metro Nádraží Veleslavín.

This track offers you a nice run on a side walk all the way, so it is a perfect place in autumn and winter where you would get muddy if you were to run off the main roads. There is a bit of down-hill and up hill-runs and beautiful views all around.

It is a favourite spots for locals all year around, pretty much no matter the weather, so it can get a bit busy, however the path is wide enough for you to find our way through. However, I would say the most busy times there are Saturdays and Sundays after lunch when families go for a stroll after a heavy meal.

We ran from our house through residential area before connecting to the main route, so in total it was 7km, I would say without the bit from and back to our house it is about 5km.

I usually do not like to run more than 5km, but it is a really nice route and I am sure I will run it more often.

Do you have any tips for running routes in Prague? Leave a comment below!

Raw Blueberry “Cheesecake”

This was the first ever raw cake I made and it came out amazing! Whenever I see a good recipe on Facebook I send it via messenger to my husband so I do not lose it. And when I was contemplating about what cake to my for my stepsons’ birthday my husband insisted I made this one.

Let’s make the “cheesecake” word clear – it looks like a cheesecake but there is no dairy, it is a vegan cake. #dairyfree #lactosefree #refinedsugarfree #vegan

First I was a bit scared as I usually stick to baked cakes and avocado based “cream” layers, so I was afraid what if it did not come out nice, especially the cashew nuts “cheesecake” layers sounded very alien to me. However the cake was very straight forward to make, I tweaked it a bit, as I always do with any new recipes that I adopt. And my husband and my stepsons’ said it was the best cake I have ever made.

 

INGREDIENTS:

For crust:

  • 1/2 walnuts
  • 1/2 chopped almonds
  • 1/2 almond flakes
  • 1/2 pitted dates
  • 1/2 prunes
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp melted coconut oil

For layers:

  • 2 1/4 cup raw cashews soaked overnight
  • 1/4 cup carob/ maple syrup
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • Lime juice from 3 – 4 limes
  • 1 tsp lime zest
  • 1 cup blueberries
  • Blueberries and strawberries for garnish

TO MAKE THE CRUST
1. Pulse ingredients in food processor/ blender until sticky crumbles form. (Add a splash of water/almond at the end if it needs help sticking.)
2.  Press crust into a parchment lined cake form.

LIME CHEESECAKE LAYER
1. The night before, soak cashews in a bowl of water. The next day, drain and rinse. Place cashews in food processor and blend for several minutes until smooth.
2. Scrape down sides and add lime juice, 1/4 cup sweetener, zest, & vanilla & blend again.
3. Stream in the melted coconut oil & blend until well combined. Taste and add more sweetener, if needed.
4. Scoop out enough of the cheesecake filling to cover the crust with about 1/2 to 1 inch of the white layer. Then set in freezer for 30 minutes to firm up.

BLUEBERRY CHEESECAKE LAYER
1. Add 1 cup blueberries to the remaining cheesecake in your food processor and blend until smooth. If your blueberries are tart, you may need a couple more tsp sweetener.
2. Spread the blueberry layer on top of lime layer and decorate with fresh blueberries and lime zest.

Cover with foil and set in the freezer for about 3 hours to firm up and then transfer to the fridge for a couple more hours.

Decorate with any fruits (strawberries, blueberries etc)

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8 weeks FAB Plank Challenge (week 1 – 4)

I always tell my clients that if I had to choose just one exercise for them to do and stick to doing every day it would be a PLANK. The plank is an amazing exercise that has an impact on your whole body. Not only plank strengthens your core, it also engages muscles on your back, your arms, legs and glutes.

I have created 8 weeks FAB Plank Challenge for my clients who do #FABin8weeks programme with me. You might have heard about the 30 days Plank Challenge, this one is designed for 8 weeks and it is suitable for complete beginners, but also intermediate or advanced as well.

To get involved in the 8 weeks FAB Plank Challenge follow my Facebook Page www.facebook.com/thefabtransformationcoach where I will be posting daily more information about this challenge together with different variations of plank.

8 weeks plank challenge week 1-4

How does it work?

  • Beginners: Follow the schedule as per the picture. Starting on Monday with 10s plank.
  • Intermediate and advanced : Double or triple the time. Either hold for 2x/3x longer without a break or take a break between the reps

You can choose from any of these 3 variations of plank to start with, and then you will progress to more advanced variations as we go:

  1. Kneeling plank (suitable for complete beginners)
    Kneel on the floor, resting your weight on your forearms and knees so that your feet are off, or just touching, the ground. Make sure that your elbows are below your shoulders. Your body should form a straight line from the shoulders to the hips
    kneeling_plank
  2. Straight/ Extended arms plank
    Place your palms firmly on the floor. Extend both legs behind you, resting on the balls of your feet. Engage your core, glutes and maintain a straight back while your elbows are directly under your shoulders. in-and-out-planks
  3. Forearm plank
    Keep your back straight, hold yourself up on your toes and balls of your feet, lower yourself down so that your elbows are bent at a 90 degree angle and you are holding yourself up on your forearms which are placed firmly on the floor.forearm-plank

If you ever feel like your are slipping on your feet it means you are putting too much weight on your feet. In that case check your arms, your elbows are most probably not below your shoulders in this case, so correct that.

Follow my blog to learn more plank variations over the next 8 weeks! Please leave a comment with your questions, and let me know how you are finding the challenge!