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Training

Fitness & Training

التدريب أو عدم التدريب؟

posted by FitnessFirst Team June 1, 2017 0 comments

ذلك هو السؤال – وما من إجابة صحيحة أو خاطئة! مع اقتراب شهر رمضان المبارك في كل عام، دائمًا ما يثار نقاش حول ما إذا كان من الأفضل صحيًا التدرب خلال هذا الوقت – أو حتى التدرُّب أثناء الصيام. وثمّة شواغل أخرى كالإفراط في تناول الطعام أو الإقلال منه كثيرًا يمكن أن تؤثر أيضًا في قرارك بشأن التدريب

الجواب بسيط: حسب الحالة

يرجع السبب في اختلاف الجواب حسب الحالة لاعتماد الأمر كليًا على طبيعة جسمك. من المهم أن تعرف وتفهم القيود التي يفرضها عليك جسمك وما يمكن لجسمك التعامل معه. فإذا كان التدريب جزءًا منتظمًا من روتينك اليومي أو الأسبوعي، فعندئذٍ لا يمثل التدريب خلال شهر رمضان أي مشكلة – وحينها قد تتمثل القيود في فهم الكثافة المناسبة لتدريباتك. وإذا كان التدريب جديدًا عليك نسبيًا، سيكون من الأفضل الابتعاد عن التدريب خلال هذا الشهر الكريم. مرة أخرى، هذا الأمر يتعلق بفهمك لقدراتك

 متى ينبغي التمرين خلال شهر رمضان؟

ثمّة سؤال آخر كثيرًا ما يُطرَح، وهو متى ينبغي أن تتدرب. ولأن شرب الماء يمثل أحد أهم الأشياء أثناء ممارسة الرياضة، فمن الأفضل التدريب مباشرة بعد تناول وجبة إفطار خفيفة. ومع ذلك، إذا كان البقاء إبقاء جسمك رطبًا بين وجبتي الإفطار والسحور مهمة سهلة، عندئذٍ سيكون التدريب أثناء الصيام مفيدًا لجسمك. اعرف قدراتك

إذا كنت قد قررت التدرُّب، فإليك بعض النقاط لتأخذها بعين الاعتبار عند وضع برنامجك للتدريب

حاول ألا تقسو على جسمك؛ وأبقِ التدريبات لمُدد قصيرة وبكثافة أقل من المُعتاد

إذا كان التدريب جديدًا عليك، حاول ممارسة بعض تمارين الكارديو والحركات الخفيفة لإبقاء جسمك في حالة حركة

احرص على شرب الكثير من الماء بين الإفطار والسحور لتحتفظ بجسمك رطبًا تمامًا

حاول أن تؤجِّل التدريبات عالية الكثافة إلى ما بعد وجبة الإفطار. بهذه الطريقة يمكنك أن تمنح جسمك الغذاء اللازم ليمنحك الطاقة للتدريب

حاول ألا تُكثر من تناول الأطعمة المقلية أو الدهنية بحيث لا تؤثر سلبًا على عملك الشاق وما حققته من لياقة بدنية

إذا بدأت تشعر بالدوار أو الإعياء، أوقف التدريب وقلّل كثافته تذكر أن القيام بأي حركة خير لك من ألا تتحرك على الإطلاق

أيًا كان قرارك – سواء بممارسة التدريب أو عدمه – احرص على أن تفهم جسمك وقدراته. هذا ليس وقت تجرُبة أشياء جديدة، ولكنه وقت الحفاظ على لياقتك. أنت تعرف جسمك أفضل من أي شخص آخر

أندريه فوكس-مارتينز
مدير اللياقة البدنية
فيتنس فيرست بلاتينيوم بلس | تاون سنتر | دبي

Fitness & Training

خطط بذكاء واحصل على نتائج في رمضان

posted by FitnessFirst Team June 1, 2017 2 Comments

إن فكرت بوضع خطة لفقد الوزن في رمضان؛ بإنهاك نفسك في تمارين الكارديو الطويلة والتدرُّب أثناء الصيام ومحاولة التفوق على ذاتك يوميًا، فأنت مخطئ ينبغي تصميم المُعادلة المثالية بتوازُن مثالي لتحقيق نتائج رائعة على مستوى الرياضة والعافية واللياقة البدنية. وشهر رمضان هو أفضل وقت لوضع خطة ذكية والحصول على نتائج رائعة. لقد اخترنا ثلاثة نصائح لمساعدتك في رحلتك لتحقيق اللياقة البدنية خلال شهر رمضان 2017

أولًا: التنظيم الذكي لروتين التمرين

أعدّ خُطة جيدة لبرنامج التمارين؛ تحترم تغذيتك الفعلية ومبنية على ما ترغب في تحقيقه. رمضان هو وقت يمكننا تسميته “بموسم التعافي”. تخيل نفسك رياضي من أصحاب الأداء القوي وتلتزم ببرنامج التمارين التزام صفوة اللاعبين المحترفين. لذا يجب عليك ألا تتوقف عن التمارين خلال رمضان ومع ذلك، ننصحك بأن تكون مرات التمارين أقل عددًا وكثافة في هذا الشهر

يحتاج جسدك فعليًا لأوقات للتعافي والراحة، ورمضان هو أفضل وقت يُمكنك فيه التدريب بكثافة أقل دون التخلّي عن النتائج الرائعة

ملاحظة: حزام ماي زوون يلعب دورًا هامًا في إدارة جلسات التمرين ويُساعدك في معرفة حدودك القصوى في التمارين

ثانيًا: رمضان هو الوقت الأمثل للاختلاط ولكن لا تتمادى حتى لا تندم

إنه موسم الطعام التقليدي الشهي، حلو المذاق، الثقيل، المليء بالدهون والسكر المكرر، حيث تكون فيه محاطًا بالعائلة والأصدقاء. قد لا نفقد السيطرة بسهولة ونندم عقب عيد الفطر مباشرة. إن فهمك لكيفية الموازنة بين اختياراتك سيساعدك على البقاء على المسار الصحيح واختيار الكميات المناسبة بحيث تسمح لنفسك بالاستمتاع بهذا الموسم. إن من أفضل النصائح تبديل الأيام التي ستلتزم فيها بالوجبات الصحية وتلك الأيام التي سيسمح لك فيها بالخروج عن البرنامج والاستمتاع. من الهام تذكر نوعية ما تأكله ومعرفة ما الذي سيكون ذا تأثير كبير على أدائك في صالة الألعاب الرياضية وكذلك على نتائجك على المديين القصير والطويل. اصنع توازنًا بين اختياراتك وستنهي هذا الشهر بشعور ومظهر رائعين

ثالثًا: نل قسطًا كافيًا من النوم

حين يتعلق الأمر برمضان فإن النوم ذا أهمية بالغة ويمكن أن يؤثر مباشرة على نتائجك

إن ليلة رائعة تقضيها في فراشك تعني ثلاث خطوات نحو تحقيق أهدافك للياقة البدنية. خذ الأمر على محمل الجد وستنبهر بالتغيرات التي ستحدث لجسدك؛ ستحظى بطاقة أكبر وتتحكم في شهيتك المفتوحة للطعام وستنخفض مستويات الكورتيزول، فالنوم يرتبط كُليًا بالتحكم في الإجهاد، حيث تعد مستويات الكورتيزول المرتفعة بمثابة آفة المجتمع الحديث، فقد تسبب أمراض القلب والسكر وارتفاع ضغط الدم وهشاشة العظام، والقائمة لا تزال طويلة

كما يعد الكورتيزول مسؤول أيضًا عن دهون البطن؛ تلك الذي تبذل قصارى جهدك لحرقها. ولعل الطريقة المثلى لخفض مستويات الكورتيزول هي أن تحظى بنوم جيد ليلًا

أطفئ جميع الأنوار وانستغرام وسناب شات والهاتف النقال والتلفاز وامنح نفسك ساعتين أو ثلاث من النوم الإضافي ليلًا. خطط لنوم عميق من 7-8 ساعات. أعلم أن ذلك صعبًا ولكن صدقني ستتذكر هذه النصيحة طوال حياتك إذا منحت نفسك الفرصة للمحاولة

لكل هدف استراتيجية مختلفة ومن المُهم معرفة ما هي احتياجاتك. لدى فيتنس فرست فريق من المحترفين يمكنهم مساعدتك في رحلتك لتنظيم روتين التمرين المثالي وإدارة برنامجك الغذائي وفهم أهمية الحصول على فترة للتعافي

برونا دينيز
مديرة اللياقة البدنية
أب تاون مردف للسيدات

Fitness & Training

To Train or Not to Train?

posted by FitnessFirst Team May 30, 2017 0 comments

That is the question – and there is no right or wrong answer! Every year as the Holy Month of Ramadan gets closer, there is always a debate as to whether it is healthy to train during this time – or even train while fasting. Other concerns such as eating too much or too little can also have an effect on peoples’ decision to train.

The answer is simple: it depends!

The reason why it depends is because it depends entirely on your body. It is important to know and understand your body’s limitations and knowing what your body can handle. If training is a regular part of your daily or weekly routine, then training during Ramadan shouldn’t be an issue – the limitation might then be to understand how intense your training should be. If training is fairly new to you, then taking this Holy Month off might be the better choice. Again, this comes down to understanding your limitations.

When to train during Ramadan?

Another question that is asked quite frequently is when to train. Because hydration is one of the most important things during exercise, it is recommended to train right after a light Iftar meal. However, if staying hydrated between Iftar and Suhoor is an easy task, then training while fasting might be alright for your body. Know your limitations!

If you do decide to train, here are some points to keep in mind when designing your training:

  • Try not to push your body too far; keep workouts short and at low intensity
  • If training is new to you, try some light cardiovascular exercises and mobility work to keep the body moving
  • Make sure to drink plenty of water between Iftar and Suhoor to keep the body fully hydrated
  • Try to keep high intensity workouts until after Iftar meals. This way you can give the body fuel for energy
  • Try not to eat too many fried or fatty foods so that it doesn’t counteract your hard work and fitness achievements thus far
  • If you start to feel dizzy or sick, stop training and lower the intensity. Remember, any movement is better than no movement at all

Whatever you decide – whether to train or not to train – make sure you understand your body and your body’s limitations. This is not the time to try new things, but to maintain your fitness. You know your body better than anyone else!

Andre Fox-Martins
Fitness Manager
Fitness First Platinum Plus l Town Center l Dubai

Fitness & Training

How and when to exercise in Ramadan

posted by FitnessFirst Team May 15, 2017 0 comments

Exercising should be continued during the holy month of Ramadan, as it is one of the healthy habits that are recommended to be followed for its many benefits that positively affect the human health.

However, the right time and kind of exercise should be chosen.

 

Why should you work out in Ramadan ?

If exercising is important to the body’s well being and health throughout the year, it is even more important in Ramadan than in any other month, due to many reasons including:

1. It helps people who follow an exercise program to easily resume it after Ramadan and does not give a chance to idleness to seep into their bodies.

2. During fast time, the muscular system gets energy by using the glucose in liver. If the physical exertion and required energy increase; and the amount of glucose in liver is inadequate to provide muscles with energy, the muscular system will use another source, which is the adipose tissue dissolution and fatty acid oxidation. If the fatty acids decrease, the muscular system will oxidize the fats in liver. Thus, fast and exercising are a good chance to burn the stored fats.

3. It improves the digestive system efficiency and protects from indigestion problems.

4. The weight lost during fast will definitely be gained after Iftar, especially if the fasting person overeats throughout Ramadan without exercising.

5. If the body suffers from deprivation and lacks energy resources, weight will be lost, but from the non-fatty tissues, which adversely affects health. However, in Ramadan, exercising and deprivation of food lead to weight loss from the adipose tissues, affecting health positively.

6. Not eating or drinking for long hours up to 15 hours, as well as staying up for long hours at night, cause body fatigue and stress. Therefore, exercising is a key factor in fasting to increase the body’s efficiency, fitness and health; add vitality to it; protect it from diseases; and eliminate idleness and laziness.

What time of the day should I exercise?

Preferable Times for Exercising in Ramadan and the benefits of each:

1. Two or three hours before Iftar to compensate the body for the missing fluids and minerals as soon as possible to avoid the health symptoms that may be caused for it as a result of exercising

2. Approximately two and half to three hours after Iftar, as during this period, food is efficiently digested to recover energy and recharge it to the vital organs of the body

The period of time allocated to an exercising class during fast does not exceed 60 minutes for a maximum of 5 days a week.

The physical activities that are preferred to be practiced in Ramadan are of low or medium intensity kind and do not require considerable exertion and high resistance that may exhaust the body.

Fitness First Team

Run goals
Fitness & Training

Guide to Reach your Health and Wellness Goals

posted by FitnessFirst Team April 10, 2017 0 comments
How many times did you say it to yourself..

“this is it, this time I’m really gonna do it!”?

For many times we keep saying to ourselves and to our friends and family that this is the time that we are actually going to achieve or start doing something for our health and fitness, start working out, gain this amount of muscle, drop this amount of fat, run every day in the morning, etc, etc, etc..

but in reality we only do it for a couple of weeks, if we actually even start it, and then it starts fading out.

fitness-stretch-run-male

I’m pretty sure that most of us have heard about goals and the importance to set them, but do we actually do it? We can easily say we want to run a marathon in 6 months, but what is the breakdown and the actions that will take us there? Where do I have to be in 3 months in order to achieve that? What about in a month? What about next week? What do I have to start doing tomorrow? There’re many ways to set your goals but the one that has been more effective for me over the past years is the SMART structure, that each letter represents a specific word that will help you set your goal. Let’s see below how it works:

On the acronym A some people use the Attainable, I preferably like to use Action plan instead, because it gives you the idea of what you need to do in order to achieve that. So now that we know what SMART goals are, let’s use the marathon example to see how it works:

It’s very common that you first select the time based and then you go to the realistic one, it can get confusing if you think that your goal is realistic but then the timeline that you put into it might not be enough, so I always recommend to get the deadline first and then realize if it is realistic or not. But this is just the beginning, this is the part where everybody can get but then the motivational side starts breaking down, “well, in reality it’s only in 6 months down the line, why do I have to start now? I can only start next week, actually I’m pretty busy with work at this point”, or even worse, “a Marathon is too much for me, what was I thinking?”

This is when you need an action plan and baby steps to get there..

fitness outdoors

You know you’ll be training 5 times a week, but where do you have to be in 1 month? Nothing better than breaking down your big goal into small goals that will help you, and for that you can always use a timeline draw, from a point “A” to “B”, starting from the future until today, let’s see below how it works.

Point A (Today) _________________________________________________Point B (Marathon)

Being “A” today and “B” the Marathon day in 6 months, you start on the Marathon point and go backwards to understand which steps you’ll need to get there. You can start by selecting where do you have to be half way there:

 

Point A (Today) ___________________________|_____________________Point B (Marathon)

3 Months – Run 21KM

By setting up this structure it will start giving you the idea what the steps are, so now its time to break that one into smaller ones:

Point A (Today) _1______2_______3__________4_________5______6____Point B (Marathon)

Now you have your big goal, in SMART goals, with an action plan and a breakdown of smaller goals that you can track your progress and keep you motivated throughout the process, as I mentioned before, if the goal is too big or too far away from today, it’ easy to get demotivated, but more important than that, you have to celebrate and reward yourself by the time you achieve those accomplishments, after all, they are great accomplishments that are taking you to the big picture. We apply the same in real life, we just don’t think about it, take babies as example, we know that eventually they will run, but we also know that before that they will walk, and before they will try to stand up, but never before they crawl, so we know the “baby steps” are there, and how much do they practice? Daily, we just don’t realize that but we’re always keen to celebrate, take pictures and videos and share with our families and friends. Do the same with your small baby steps for your wellness goals.

cardio-machines

Regardless of what is your wellness goal at this point, either exercising, start eating healthier, having a more active lifestyle, always ensure you know exactly what you’re chasing, have an action plan for it and you know where you have to be in short period of time, if necessary print out a piece of paper or even write it down on a sticker, put it on your desk, on your fridge or even or your mobile phone wallpaper, but make sure you see it everyday.

Andre Fox-Martins
Fitness Manager

Our Team

Let the race begin!

posted by FitnessFirst Team January 9, 2017 0 comments

Here it goes: nutrition – check, water bottles – check, swimming gear – check, race fuel – check, timing chip – check, bed time – check.  4am my alarm goes off and by 4:30am I’m driving to the beach…It’s dark, windy and unbelievably exciting. Any other circumstance would made me question my sanity but not on the race day! I get ready in T1, march nervously towards the swim start to stand shoulder to shoulder with hundreds of athletes from around the world that are about to battle the same distance across swim, bike and run disciplines to proudly wear the finisher T-shirt…

…before you put on the Finisher T-shirt, you’ve spent months preparing for the race, investing in your mental and physical health, made sacrifices around your work and personal lifestyle because you’ve made a choice. A choice that made you commit to yourself and your team, a choice that has victory at the end of the road and one, that only you can push through when the times get tough!

On January 27th 2017 we are going to witness 160 Fitness First staff changing into the ‘Finisher’ t-shirt & here is how: 2 years ago there were 3 Fitness First employees who signed up to race individually the half Ironman distance triathlon in Dubai…the following year we decided to invite some keen colleagues to join us which brought our numbers to a total of 60 at the Dubai International Triathlon….this year, 160 Fitness First staff, few of our members and key business partners are going to stand proudly at the IRONMAN 70.3 Dubai start line to use their strength, to face their fears and to live our brand. Over the years, we watched the passion grow within our teams which is now unstoppable with clubs supporting major sporting events, competing in international races and our presence across the field in the Middle East. That’s what counts. From the Executive Team to club teams, we live, breathe and just can’t get enough of our brand, what better place to be!

If you look at the team and individual split, not everyone is a pro but everyone is a hero! Some of us never thought a triathlon is something to get involved in, some have only learnt how to swim in the process, others never run more than 5 or 10km and some & for some, focus has always been weight training…. and yes,  there are also those that haven’t ridden a bike since they were kids! But, does it really matter and how do you involve such big numbers?  Simple, they all made a choice and they love what we do. Based on a simple shout out, in less than 2 weeks we exceeded our predicted numbers for participants and the interest kept going. With the support from Fitness First our teams are training hard and awaiting the arrival of their training kit. This amazing initiative would’ve not been possible if it wasn’t for our closest strategic partners contributing almost AED 100,000 in sponsorship, call this a team effort! We’ve created a huge buzz around the business successfully continuing to promote the sense of community through social media activations, never ending what’s app groups, high energy training sessions and have already been asked about the next event. No session is ever too late and no session is ever too early, participation strives! We support them, we help them but all the hard work, come from the individuals…all we did, is ignited the fire!

Key important component of success for any company are when staff is passionate about your product, about your brand, about your future. How powerful it is that 160 staff will be waving the Fitness First flag on the race day, a race that is recognised internationally in the age group and professional field …. The main part however comes way before the race day : it starts with commitments and a plan, then hours of training, strategy, aches and pains, learning the disciplines, early starts and late finished, nutrition changes and body transformations is what it takes to stand on that beach and wait for the whistle to blow.  It starts by not giving up. By then, you’ve earned it, you worked for it, and you are ready to face it. We are proud that our teams represent that.

For some of us, it is just another race, another t-shirt, another medal …. For others, it’s a challenge of a lifetime or a race they never dreamt of participating in. We are making it happen but our staff passion for fitness & movement made the recruitment easy! Truth to be told, you are never too old for the next medal…

Will the numbers grow year on year? Yes. Will we involve our members? Absolutely. Do we love what we do? No doubt.

See you all at the beach on January 27th 2017…. shoulder to shoulder let the race begin!

Kate Milewska
Group Central Operations and Customer Service Manager
Fitness First Middle East and North Africa

 

Testimonials

Salman’s Inspiring Story

posted by FitnessFirst Team December 12, 2016 0 comments

A huge congratulations to Salman, he’s shed an incredible 25 KG in four months since becoming a Fitness First member and never felt better!

 

Here’s his inspiring story:

Salman: I began getting big after moving to Sharjah at the age of 11. I became unhealthy and was held back by my excess weight towards the end of high school. I was unable to do certain things other kids could do such as run a mile or fit comfortably under a desk. A couple of months after graduating, I decided to try and get into shape.

I joined Fitness First and haven’t looked back since. My personal trainer Muhammed Kashif was wonderful in helping me reach my goals as I lost a total of 25 KG in four months through HIIT training, cardio, and a big alteration in my diet to help me lead a healthier lifestyle. I found that the most challenging thing to deal with is temptation when trying to lose weight.

Being in a household where people didn’t care too much about being healthy took a lot of will-power to stay on track and choose healthier options, but I began seeing results after a month which was pleasing. I feel so better about myself now and I’m able to do lots of things I couldn’t do before. I look different, sound different and walk different. I feel great every single day and feel like I can offer so much more to life.

I’d like to thank Fitness First because it’s not just a gym; it becomes a part of your life. The ambience, friendly staff, service and the motivation that my trainer Muhammad gave me are all major factors that helped me achieve my goal.

Well done Salman!

Start your incredible journey today: www.fitnessfirstme.com

Testimonials

قصة نجاح المفتش بدر اسماعيل

posted by FitnessFirst Team December 12, 2016 0 comments

المفتش بدر اسماعيل

 قد نجح المفتش بدر اسماعيل من المراكز الجمركية الجوية في تحدي محاربة السمنة بتفوق حيث قام بإنقاص 42 كيلو من وزنه خلال 7 أشهر من شهر أبريل لغاية شهر نوفمبر حيث كان وزنه 140 كيلو غرام ليصبح وزنه 98 كيلو وقد تم تكريمه من فتنس فيرست وجمارك دبي

21

:المعاناة السابقة

صعوبة التنفس

الشعور بعدم الراحة والخمول وعدم النشاط

عدم الشعور بالرضى والسعادة

عدم انتظام في النوم

عدم ملائمة الزي الرياضي وزي التفتيش

:القرار بتغير الحياة

 التحق من قبل مركز التدريب الجمركي ببرنامج لياقتي صحتي بفتنس فيرست

تم وضع برنامج غذائي ورياضي

المتابعة الدورية والتحفيز

تشجيع المدرب وزملاء العمل والاهل

الاصرار والتشجيع من قبل الزملاء 

:رحلة تحقيق الاهداف

الالتزام بالبرنامج

التوكل على الله

النظر الى المستقبل ، والاحتفال بالمكاسب الصغيرة

التحسن الكبير في الصحة ، مما ادى الى متابعة العمل الدؤوب

:النجاح

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Fitness & Training

The Huge Shift for Women to Lift!

posted by Adam McCubbin October 21, 2016 3 Comments

In the last 5 years, there has been a huge shift in women’s health and an embracement of resistance training for health benefits and aesthetics. A common misconception, women believed that by lifting weights, they would automatically develop huge, thick, unsightly muscles and thought that they would be better served spending their time on the treadmill to melt away fat! Finally, we have come to realise that this is simply not true and the very thing that we once feared has become the answer to unlocking true health and the body that women have always wanted!

Weight-Training

It’s hard not to scroll through social media to see countless articles, Instagram selfies and videos of women, sharing and teaching other women to not fear weights, but to become strong and healthy. Hence the rise in popularity of the trending hashtag #strongisthenewskinny. Pop culture has started to move away from promoting waif thin and delicate body types to celebrating stronger, curvier women with toned muscles and a healthier, more attainable body image. (Billion-dollar industry (24 billion – 2014))

Like everything, there are extremes that can be unhealthy with resistance training, but with adequate education and the right mental approach, there are few women that wouldn’t benefit from a structured weight training program.

Putting to rest the misconceptions of weight training for women

If I want to lose weight, I should prioritise cardio over weights.

Switch it around and you’ll have it right! It’s true, doing cardio can help with the weight loss process, but it’s not nearly as effective as weight training. Classic steady state cardio can burn the calories just like weights can during the session. However the recovery from steady state cardio will be less demanding on the body and won’t keep your metabolic rate elevated like weights will. Running on the treadmill without direction and a planned resistance program is the fastest way to nowhere!

High reps and light weights are ideal for women to tone up.

Somewhere along the line, light weights and high repetitions were marketed to women as an effective way to target and tone certain parts of the body. Perhaps it was some sort of infomercial selling a thigh squeezer or butt clencher, either way, they were feeding you snake oil! To create a change in the body, there needs to be significant disruption to produce results. For example, if you lift 10 kg for 10 reps compared with 30 kg for 10 reps. Which weight makes you work harder? The higher weight causes a bigger disruption metabolically, thus has a cascading effect on how many calories you burn for your system to recover. If the calories you consume are the same or lower than what you exert on average, then there is little to no chance that you will put on weight and chances are you will drop unwanted body fat and replace it with firm muscle a.k.a. “toning”.

fitness-weights

Weight training will make me bulky.

Despite what you may have heard, building significant muscle is actually hard to do for most people. Men spend countless amounts of money in the quest of building bigger muscles and they have 10x more testosterone (which is a crucial hormone for muscle grow) than women do. Muscle is a denser tissue compared with fat, meaning that it takes up less space than fat. For example, two people may be the same height and weight, however the person with the higher body fat percentage will wear the larger clothes. The fast food diet is going to be the main reason why your jeans don’t fit anymore, not the weight training.

Embrace weight training, keep educating yourself and learn from the growing epidemic of women that have successfully become fit, strong and healthy.

Fitness First has been committed to Breast Cancer Awareness for many years and now with the annual adrenaline pumping session of Zumbathon. This year’s ‘Party in Pink’ is happening on the 23rd October at Fitness First Meadows.

Come join the party and spread the message to raise awareness for Breast Cancer by registering for the event! SMS your “name” & “ZumbaMoves” to 4900.

Fittest Female Trainer Unleashes her inner Wolf
Our Experts

Fittest Female Trainer Unleashes her inner Wolf

posted by FitnessFirst Team October 16, 2016 0 comments

She is the WOLF leading the pack, she reflects positively on the group with her energy, power and strength with no compromise whereby the group benefits, moreover she gains just as much from the group as the group benefits from her: the group as a whole makes her stronger!

This is what happens with Fiona MacDonald, the she-wolf, in her group exercise classes. She leads with her energy and will, motivating the class to work harder and with them she becomes stronger and the class benefits as a whole! There is no stopping, no giving in, the whole group works together to reach their goals just like the wolf pack.

quotes-unleashFitness First Fiona MacDonald is one of our highly energetic group exercise instructors who conducts numerous high intensity group exercise classes like Cycling, Circuit Training and our well renowned signature program, TUFF which is the toughest and most challenging class of them all.

TUFF facts that most members would not know

Fiona MacDonlad was crowned the “Fittest Female Trainer in the UAE” last month, competing against 100 top fitness professionals showing immense endurance, strength and stamina and surviving till the end!

This brings up the question, where did Fiona get all her strength and will power to endure such grueling exercises and not stop or give in?

How did Fiona “Unleash” herself and win the fittest female trainer?

We believe the answer lies in group exercise and team based training which give her the strength and power to keep going till the end and not give up! The power of being part of a group makes her stronger and hence come the benefits attending group exercise classes on a regular basis and team/buddy based workouts.

Working Out in a Group Is More Fun

According to Fiona she enjoys her TUFF classes and goes on to say, “the challenge itself was not easy but it was the kind of thing I enjoy, if enjoy is the right word. I do a lot of functional training and also enjoy attending TUFF classes which involves a mixture of 3 dimensional body weight and bar bell moves.

She also gets her endurance and determination to keep going from her participation in triathlons and from her background in long distance running.

She goes on to say, “I also enjoy participating in triathlons. The training for this is quite time consuming so when I’m not participating in or teaching TUFF you can usually find me in one of the pools, out on my bike or running the roads. Even in the Dubai heat.”

“My background is in long distance running which I think came to my advantage in this challenge as the final determination round was about not stopping and not giving in.”

It is our mission at Fitness First through our fitness experts and group exercise to provide sound training and mindset advice to motivate and enable YOU to Unleash Yourself too!

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UNLEASH YOURSELF encourages you to take a walk on the wild side and reveal the animal in you when you are working out! No matter what your level of fitness or what your preferred training style is, we want you to #UnleashYourself to become the best version of YOU to reach your full potential in fitness, and in life!

Click here to download a FREE Group Exercise Training Plan, join our group exercise classes or train with a buddy and Unleash the WOLF in YOU!

unleash-yourself

Fitness & Training

6 High Intensity Interval Training Exercises for Heart Health

posted by FitnessFirst Team September 29, 2016 0 comments

Cardio exercises are necessary for any effective training program, not only for fat burning, but also for overall good health. Your heart is a muscle, and we all know that to keep our muscles in shape we need move them.

The best thing about cardio workout is that we can do them anywhere and anytime. What we need is a little imagination and functionality of our own body so that we can run an infinite number of different movements, different intensity and contribute to our cardiovascular health. It is important to keep our body moving and choose a lifestyle that will help us avoid injuries.

Benefits of the Cardio workout:

♦ Faster metabolic system

♦ Decrease in cholesterol levels

♦ Increased secretion of growth

♦ Hormone increase blood flow to the brain,

♦ Improving concentration

♦ Improve digestion

♦ Stress reduction

♦ Strengthening the immune system

♦ Relief from depression and anxiety.

♦ Better sleep

♦ More confidence about how you feel and look

A side of the all advantages, there are people who love cardio exercise as much as “tooth extraction” and sometimes they find it boring to run, ride a bike, row or walk.

Today I choose a different type of cardio, High Intensity Interval Training that will help you to lose body fat, shape and feel great:

1. Lunge single Leg ( 15 second each leg )

2. Jumping Jacks X 30 second

3. Squat MB ball hold X 30 second

4. Shuttle run side 5mX30

5. Row machine Pike X 30 second

6. Burpee X 1 min

Repeat 3X/Max Repetitions/Monitor your progress

1. Lunge Single Leg:

  • Stand with feet shoulder width apart
  • Step forward with one foot and lower yourself by bending your knees
  • Your back should be straight throughout the whole movement
  • Stop when your front thigh is parallel with the ground

lunge-single-leg

2. Jumping Jack

  • Stand tall with your back straight
  • Jump outward with feet wider
  • At the same time raise your arms overhead

jumping-jack

3. Squat MB ball hold

  • Stand straight with feet shoulder width apart.
  • Adjust feet to face slightly outward
  • Lower yourself by bending knees and pushing your hips back
  • Keep back straight
  • Stop when your thighs are parallel with the ground
  • When you return press the ball and keep back straight

ball-hold

4. Shuttle run

  • Place 2 cons on a distance of 5m
  • Start from right or left side
  • Explode laterally
  • Run either to the right or left and touch the line with your hand

shuttle-run

5. Row machine – pike

  • Your body should be in a straight line from head to toe
  • Pressing down through your palms, lift your hips up towards the ceiling by drawing your legs towards your chest until you look like an upside-down V, or as high as you can go
  • Slowly lower your legs and return to the starting position 

row-machine-pike

6. Burpee

  • Start with standing position
  • Lower yourself by bending knees to squat position with hands on the floor
  • Drop your feet back into plank position and keep your shoulders extended
  • Return back to the squat position by jumping forward

burpee

Your Hearth Rate Zone should be between 75-90%.

myzone-zonesDon’t forget to monitor your workout. Set and write down the goal and track your achievement. Be proud of every movement you do, this is a gift you are giving to your hearth and your health.

Don’t forget that “The Body achieves what the mind believes”.

Ivana Sargic
Assistant Fitness Manager
Fitness First Ladies Only, Marina Mall Abu Dhabi

Innovations

Stay on top of your game with MYZONE

posted by FitnessFirst Team September 22, 2016 0 comments

The prospect of traveling, sounds like a blessing for some but might be actually a curse for others! Some people travel way too often, sometimes every week and it can get quite overwhelming. It’s hard to maintain your life balance and hobbies and if you are a regular gym-goer and you pay attention to what you eat, this can get very challenging and health concerning.

Unsurprisingly, if you travel a lot you generally don’t have the chance to eat fresh, healthy meals or to workout in your favorite gym. Also, time zone changes, busy schedules and different environments just don’t motivate you to push yourself to workout more often.

Like eating on the road; the key is to start strong.

My advice is to workout on your first day because you are much more likely to maintain that habit, book a hotel with a gym if you can and take advantage of it. If you are staying in a runner-friendly place; running outside can be a great way to see some of the city you’re visiting while burning calories. And to step it much further and benefit the most out of it, you can use your heart rate monitor device. In our case, fellow Fitness Firster’s, it’s the MYZONE belt we are using!

myzone-belt

MYZONE is a very clever fitness device which measures the frequency of your heartbeat to ensure you are exercising at a safe and effective level.

A transmitter strapped around the chest sends information to your smartphone or your smart watch and gives you constant updates. It lets you know if you are not exercising hard enough or if you’re pushing yourself too hard, and you can use this information to adjust your routines. While traveling, it’s a precise, accurate and great way to monitor your effort and progress and to stay motivated.

myzone-mobile-stream

MYZONE weights only 58g and is relatively inexpensive for wearable fitness devices in the market, so there is actually no excuse not to own one and to bring it with you when on the road. Also, don’t worry about running out of batteries; it lasts for a long time and then you just simply recharge it via USB.

There are many ways how to use your MYZONE effectively. One simple way would be to estimate the calories burned during exercise. This can be especially handy if your workouts are part of a weight-loss program. For ladies, easily achievable would be 500 kcal and for gents could be 750 kcal.

To get more creative, or, let’s say more ‘advanced’; you can use MYZONE to target a specific zone for a specific goal. The target zone is a percentage range based on your maximum heart rate. The simplest way to calculate your maximum heart rate is about 220 minus your age. Say if you are 40 years old, your max heart rate would be around 180 beats per minute.

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Know your MYZONE zones and your goals:

Blue Zone
Blue Zone is Endurance (60%–70% of your max heart rate): Considered ideal for endurance and weight-loss programs. Develops cardiovascular and muscular efficiency. The body learns to use stored fat as fuel.
Green Zone
Green Zone is Aerobic (70%–80%): Ideal for overall cardiovascular fitness, muscle strength and weight management. The body burns mostly fat and carbohydrates in this zone.
Yellow Zone
Yellow Zone is Anaerobic (80%–90%): Used for interval workouts or consistent speed. At this zone, your breathing will be heavy and your muscles tired. Enhances lung capacity and increases lactate tolerance.
Red Zone
Red Zone is VO2 Max (90%–100%): Helps enhance speed in athletes (who exercise at this level only for short periods as muscles quickly go into oxygen debt).

So, whether you travel for business, pleasure, vacation, world domination, or epic questing, at some point in our lives we all depart from our homes to visit another location. It might be a quick trip to the next town over for a business conference or a massive adventure halfway around the world for months at a time. No matter what kind of trip it is, one thing is certain: you need to stay on top of your game and pay attention to your health and well-being. Your heart rate monitor will be your best friend or your worst enemy but one thing is for sure, it will take you much further!

Pavel Olsar
Assistant Fitness Manager
Dubai International Financial Gate

cardio-machines
Fitness & Training

7 reasons Fitness First is more than a gym

posted by FitnessFirst Team August 22, 2016 0 comments

For many people, a visit to the gym means following the same routine: warm up, 40 minutes on the treadmill, some weights and then cool down, home. This routine will maintain your fitness, sure! But you may find yourself stuck in your own routine with less motivation in your workout, and perhaps most importantly, you may begin to lose the enjoyment that can be gained from working out.

What a lot of people don’t know is that your gym membership can be your best friend on the journey to a healthier life. With your Fitness First membership, you can experience the advantages of working alongside people who care about your success. A gym does not need to just be a gym, and here’s how we achieve that:

Freestyle Classes

We hold Freestyle Group Training sessions that challenge your body to move, increase everyday mobility. Each session is different which keeps things interesting, and focuses on different parts of the body and planes of motion. Everyone can get involved, and groups of 4-8 club members will enjoy the interactive 30 minute workout on the gym floor, which provides lots of time to get to know your fellow fitness fans.

Personal Training

If you feel like you need a bit more information about how to get fitter, increase your strength or lose some weight, we have accredited personal trainers who can help. They can design a custom program just for you, to assist you in reaching your goals.

Core Juice Bar

Once you’ve finished your workout, you don’t need to rush off – a protein smoothie is the perfect way to end a training session. There is so much variety to choose from, or you can even just make up your own! After a workout is one of the best times to get protein into the body so that the protein can be delivered to your muscles and repair any micro-tears, and of course it helps that the smoothies are delicious! 

MYZONE

Sometimes it feels like there is no obvious change to your body even though you’ve been working out hard. Using a tracking system allows you to keep note of your progress online, with a system that monitors your heart rate, burned calories, and time spent exercising. MYZONE then converts your workout into MYZONE Effort Points that can be exchanged for rewards.

Swim Academy

Did you know that we have a swim program? We operate all over Dubai, from Uptown Mirdif, to Burjuman to Emirates Living. Kids of all ages and abilities can learn how to swim confidently, develop their strokes or even join a competitive team. Adults & teens can also enjoy the water, with swimming based fitness classes.

Discounts and Privileges

What if your gym card didn’t just work in the gym? Well, your membership card provides you with discounts in multiple restaurants across the city, as well as leisurewear outlets such as Adidias, spas and salons, and loads more. Not only that, but you can collect Shukran points when you sign up, and when you purchase any additional services or products from Fitness First. Work hard and shop harder.

International Passport

Fitness First is an international brand, with gyms and facilities all over the world. We know how important a fitness regime is, and travelling can sometimes throw you off-track. But whether you are travelling for business or pleasure, you can rest in the knowledge that you will have access to a Fitness First club wherever you go. Just speak to a member of staff before you travel!

Never again does the gym need to be a monotonous exercise.  Everything you need to keep yourself on a focused and fun fitness journey is available with one card, so make the most of it! Join a new class and try something different, relax in the sauna, socialize in the members lounge, travel and maintain your fitness across the globe, while tracking your amazing progress online.

Our gyms offer more than just a gym. They offer a lifestyle. So start living it!

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Fitness & Training

This Ramadan Aim to Maintain with MYZONE

posted by FitnessFirst Team June 13, 2016 0 comments

The aim of Ramadan is to maintain your fitness and MYZONE can help you do just that. Nicky Holland, Fitness Manager shows how to utilise your MYZONE belt to get the most from your workout during the Holy Month.

For more information on MYZONE please visit our website.

Fitness & Training

Get XFit this Ramadan

posted by FitnessFirst Team June 7, 2016 0 comments

Dinis Timoteo, Assistant Fitness Manager at Fitness First Motor City explains how XFit workouts can really help you improve your technique during this time.

 

Fitness & Training

4 Best Times to Train during Ramadan

posted by FitnessFirst Team June 6, 2016 0 comments

Over the thirty days of Ramadan, you need to do some exercise in order to maintain your fitness, but you don’t need to do what you are used to. The aim is to maintain and not gain. In order to do this, you need to have a strategy and work out a schedule according to your timetable.

There are 4 schools of thought when it comes to training during Ramadan.

All of them agree that you must cut back on the amount of exercise you usually do, particularly if you are a long distance runner or someone who does a lot of cardio work. During the fast, with high temperatures and no liquid from sunrise to sunset, you will compromise your health by pushing yourself too much. It is not recommended to do intensive cardio workouts and heavy weight-training exercises while fasting.

The recommendation is that you cut back to 2 cardio workouts a week. For weight training, the best times would be after Taraweeh prayers at night or about 1 hour after Iftar. Make a schedule for yourself and plan on exercising two times a week. If you really are feeling strong, you may want to add an extra day to that regime if you feel up to it.

When to exercise on those days is where the differing opinions come in.

1.   Exercise 90 minutes before sunset

This will make it towards the cooler part of the day. You will exercise on an empty stomach. The routine will be low key with more resistance training, stretching, less repetitions with slightly lighter weights and slow short jogs or brisk walks. Don’t exercise for more than an hour. The benefit of this is that when you have completed your workout, you are very close to sunset and you can drink water to rehydrate yourself. The disadvantage is that you are exercising at a time when you may be very hungry and thirsty. You do not want to compromise your health by vigorous exercise when you are dehydrated.

2.   Exercise after your evening meal

It’s never easy exercising on a full stomach but during the fast, after food seems the most logical time to get a routine in. As you are only exercising two or three times a week, on those days, you may want to eat a little to refuel your body, being sure to drink enough water to rehydrate yourself and then break your meal to do the exercise. That way, you will have more energy for the workout, but still have the opportunity to return to the meal.

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3.   Exercise between 11pm and 2am

There is a train of thought that suggests exercising a couple of hours after the evening meal. If you are a night owl, you may discover that the best time for exercise is between 11pm and 2am. Once your night meal has settled, you will have energy and will be hydrated. You can try and sleep after work, so that you will not be overtired by midnight. Exercising at that time is cooler than day time, which is also helpful. If you exercise at between 11pm and midnight, you are still able to get a few hours more sleep until you get up to start the day.

4.   Exercise between 3am & 4am.

Early birds may want to go to sleep early and wake up early to exercise on an empty stomach prior to your early morning meal. This way you will have energy from the previous night’s meal, yet still have an empty stomach. You can hydrate while you exercise and on your return have your early morning meal. This method you get energized for the day ahead.

Conclusion

Whichever time you choose, remember not to overdo it. Force yourself to go at a slower pace than usual, continually reminding yourself that you are exercising to maintain and not to gain. Stop if you feel dizzy or lack energy. Rest frequently and do a low impact workout.

 

Fitness First Team

fitness-mindbody-yoga-beach
Fitness & Training

5 Tips to Help you Maintain your Fitness during Ramadan

posted by FitnessFirst Team June 2, 2016 1 Comment

Ramadan is 30 days of no food or water between sunrise and sunset. It is a time of reflection and introspection, focusing on inner strength and discipline.  As it is a period of fasting and physical self-denial, careful thought must be given to how one exercises during this time and what one eats.

If you have any health issues and during the year you work out to stay as healthy as possible, it may be that you need to take a break from exercise during this month. Diabetics, for example, should seek medical advice in regard to their exercise regime and what they should be doing during the fast.

According to experts there are two main issues which need particular consideration during Ramadan:

Aim to maintain and not to gain

This means that during the fast, you don’t have to aim to improve your fitness. Your goal must be simply to maintain how fit you are. It has been said that if you do no exercise at all during the month of Ramadan, you could go back to the state of fitness you were in 4 months ago.  Your diet during Ramadan is very important with a key point being for you to eat your normal number of calories.

Watch your hydration levels

Dehydration during Ramadan can be one of the biggest issues. As you are not drinking or eating throughout daylight hours, it is easy to become dehydrated. With summer temperature rising, you need to have an effective plan that will ensure you have enough fluids in a 24 hour period.

With these two issues in mind, there are a number of strategies you can employ that will ensure you maintain your fitness, stay hydrated and end the fast healthier than when you began.

nutrition-water-male

Here are five tips to help you maintain your fitness during Ramadan:

1. Change your routine

It goes without saying that our routine will change during Ramadan. You want to rise well before sunset so you can have an early morning meal. Also for your workout times, you may need to adjust your routine to Ramadan and plan when is the most comfortable time for you to train whether it is right before iftar, after iftar or before or after Suhoor.

2. Eat well-balanced meals

A well-balanced meal of protein, carbohydrates and good fats is most likely to sustain you throughout the 15 hours of fasting. Proteins such as eggs and fish or meat, you can include nuts such as almonds, carbohydrates such as sweet potato and fats such as avocados. If you are still hungry after that turn to fruit and cereal.

nutrition-soup-portions

3. Don’t overeat!

There’s no end to the amount of food to eat before sunrise, but don’t go overboard. If you do, you will, as many people do, gain weight during this month. Avoid the temptation o overeat during the evening meal and eat until you are reasonably full. Try not to have too much sugar. A rapid rise in your blood sugar level will lead to an excess of insulin being released into the blood. This gobbles up the glucose and a few hours later you may begin to feel weak, miserable and extra sluggish.

4. Drink water

Make sure you have enough water to drink before you begin your fast for the day. Don’t drink too much in one sitting. You want to try and spread the amount of water you are going to drink over the night. If you can take in 10 glasses of water (1.5 litres) from sunset to sunrise, you should maintain a normal level of hydration. You can work out your water needs as the fast progresses. With particularly hot days, you may need more fluid. In the evening don’t forget to re-hydrate yourself. Take water with you if you are going out and when you go to bed at night, keep a bottle of water next to your bed. When you wake up in the night, drink at least a glass or two.

5. Exercise to stay fit

While you don’t want to overdo exercise during Ramadan, you do want to do some that will result in you maintaining the fitness with which you entered the fast. It is recommended to exercise for a minimum of two times a week if not more. Any form of exercise is advisable from low intensity cardio sessions to light weights strength and conditioning and body weight exercises.

Conclusion

Ramadan is an opportunity for you to break bad habits and start good ones. When it comes to what to eat during the fast this year, try and select only what grows or breaths. If you can pick it off a tree, grow it in the ground, raise it on a farm or catch it in the sea, it’s good to eat. Avoid all packaged foods. If it’s in a box or in a packet, it’s inevitably going to be loaded with preservatives, excess salt and sugar. Those products are going to be far less healthy for you and are to be avoided. To maintain your fitness during Ramadan, you want to maintain a healthy diet and keep your calorie intake at the level you usually need.

Fitness First Team