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Sunday, 9 December 2012

We've moved!

I've decided that, seeing as my fitness is less focused on running it doesn't really make much sense to keep writing under Running Bunn. So, all my fitness stuff can be found over at Bunn The Baker. Head over there to keep up to date with me, my fitness and my training tips.


Ali. x

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

The Great Sports Bra Robbery

Every woman knows if you're going to exercise you need a good sports bra. Whether you have the lion's share in the chest department or you're pretty much flat chested, it's really important to have a sports bra that supports your delicate breast tissue.

There are so many to choose from, all with their own pros and cons but one big con they all have in common is the price.

Take, for example, the Shock Absorber Run Bra - widely acknowledged as the best support bra for high impact sports like running. At around £37 you'd want it to be! I mean, that's a lot of money for something you can't exercise without.

It's the same whatever brand you go for - Nike, Playtex, Berlei - all tend to come in at £25 - £40. You can save a bit by going for a 'bra top' style, but that doesn't work for my 34Es which need a bit more discipline than a stretchy lycra crop-top can offer. You'll also find that sometimes the price goes up as the cup size does within each style of bra, which seems a little unfair!

There are much more important things to spend £40 on than a sports bra - like school shoes - which has made me feel like buying a new sports bra is simply a luxury I can't afford. It shouldn't feel like a luxury product, it's an essential piece of kit! My only sports bra is 5 years old and pretty much useless now. I've been putting off getting a new one for ages, having to cope with sore boobs and shoulders every time I work out, even resorting to wearing it over a normal bra to try and get more support out of it. [I have bought a new one now, but only because my husband made me]

I'm not suggesting we do away with sports bra's and start strapping ourselves in with gaffer tape (actually, would that work?!) but, with all the pressure on women to get active shouldn't the big sportswear and underwear brands be making changes? I think they should be making it easier for us to get out there and get active, not harder.

Thursday, 8 November 2012

How to Achieve Your Goals

If you haven't joined my fitness linky yet, why not?! I'm asking you all to set three fitness goals to achieve between 12th November and Christmas Day. Just writing them down will help, but you do need to think about how you're going to get there too.

Step 1
Turn your goals from wafty, lofty aims into smart objectives. Each one should be

Specific - Don't just say you'll be better at something, pick a distance you want to run, a weight you want to lift, a number of times to attend a class.

Measureable - Make sure you can give yourself a tick at the end by choosing something you can measure. Plan your routes so you know the distance you've covered or activate that GPS. Keep a diary to log everything you do and then, in six weeks time you'll know you've succeeded.
Achievable - There's no point saying you want to bench 500 kg or run 2000 miles - that's just silly and not at all possible.

Realistic - Similar to the point above, don't aim to run 100 miles in 6 weeks if you're a beginner. Equally, don't under-estimate yourself - if you're already running 10 miles a week aim a little higher.

Timebound - Luckily for you I've set the timescale on this, so you know how long you have to get where you want to be!

Step 2
Make a plan. How will you achieve all this? Are you going to gradually increase your weekly activity or log as much time as possible straight away? Write what you're going to do over the next 6 weeks on a calendar and you should find it easy to keep on track.

Step 3
Support each other. Encourage friends to join in, make new fit friends on twitter and facebook. When you're feeling un-motivated they'll help you, when you're raring to go inspire others. Support is the key to success in this!

So, good luck everyone, let's get ready to rock the winter fitness.

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Fitness Link-up

Find yourself in a winter phunk? Yeah, me too. Set yourself 3 fitness goals and stick to them. Post a link below to a blog post / tweet / facebook status listing them and we'll work through it together.

My goals - between 12th November - 24th December I will
  1. Run 35 miles
  2. Cycle 150 miles
  3. Bench 30kg

Sunday, 21 October 2012

Lat Pulldown

Your lattimus dorsi are the muscles running down either side of your back. Keeping them strong helps posture and core strength as well as your overall upper body strength. Using a cable machine to do lat pull downs is a great way to work these muscles for a beginner as you can start with a small weight. If you're already pretty strong you can work your lats with pull-ups.

I'm pretty new to the whole upper body workout thing so I'm using my multi-gym (bargain from Cashies) to build up my strength. For this exercise, as with most, I do a pyramid - starting at a low weight with 30 reps, I then increase the weight and go down to 20 reps, increase the weight again for 10 reps then go back down.

  • Start by sitting facing the machine and grasp the bar overhand (palms away from you) - a wide grip works the whole lat muscle whilst a close grip focuses more on the lower lat and biceps.
  • Lean back at about a 30° angle and pull the bar down to chest level. Focus on squeezing with your back muscles and not your arms, try to keep elbows directly under your hands.
  • Slowly raise the bar maintaining control and tension at all times.
  • Repeat, repeat, repeat!
To stretch afterwards first cross your arms around yourself to grasp the opposite shoulder and hug tightly to feel a stretch across the whole of your upper back. Next stand with feet shoulder width apart and bend at the waist keeping your back straight. Reach forwards to feel a stretch down the whole of the back and hold for 10.

Friday, 19 October 2012

Upper Body Weights

I'm trying to increase my upper body strength at the moment, but I'm a bit clueless about weights. Luckily my lovely Mr Bunn is here to help me and has designed an upper body workout for me! I do this once a week (although I feel like i should be doing it more often). Matthew tells me not to focus on the weight or the fact that I am lifting way less than the people I follow on fitocracy. He wants me to focus on reps. Lots of reps makes pretty arms and builds up strength without ending up properly muscly. I tend to do pyramids - so I start with lots of reps at a low weight, then increase weight and decrease reps, then back down again.

So, here's what I did on a recent session...

Thursday, 18 October 2012

A Guide to Fitness Supplements


Maybe take a few seconds to re-read those words, as it is vital they are understood. Before considering supplementation you need to ensure that the more important aspects of your training are in order.
  • The training itself - by this, I mean exercise (running, lifting weights, swimming, etc.) If you don’t put the hours in you are not going to get anywhere. 
  • Diet - there is absolutely no substitute for a healthy, well balanced diet, full of protein and good quality carbohydrates. 
  • Sleep – so often over looked but SO important. Your body needs rest, especially when subjecting it to hard training regimes.
The variety of sports supplements available is outrageously huge. If you allow yourself to be sucked in you can very easily, soon find yourself spending hundreds of Pounds every month. I use four different supplements and they are -