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    I Spent Hours Doing Cardio and Saw No Results—Here’s What Actually Changed My Body

    As a former indoor cycling instructor and accomplished marathon runner, my days were once filled with hours and hours of heart-pounding, relentless cardio workouts that left me sweaty and breathless. The endorphins were real, and the adrenaline was incredible. Yet, no matter how much time I spent on the bike, the treadmill, or running all over planet Earth, my body simply never changed. While I wasn’t necessarily looking to lose a ton of weight or make any dramatic alterations to my figure, I thought the hard work would have paid off. But no matter how many calories I burned, I never looked any different. It took me many years, a few career changes, and some self-discovery, but to all my cardio queens out there: I finally figured it out. You know those women who spend way less time at the gym than you but appear more confident in their bodies and straight up look like they work out? I figured out their secrets, and I’m going to share them with you. Here are five changes I made that actually made a huge difference in my body composition and confidence.

    1. I prioritized strength training
    Many of us grew up believing that cardio equals weight loss. However, while cardio has many benefits, overdoing cardio can put stress on your body and have the opposite effects. The true fitness secret to getting toned is to start building muscle. Afraid of getting bulky? Don’t be. Women don’t have enough testosterone to support that kind of muscle growth, so women with extra-muscular physiques have to eat and train in a very intense, specific way. In other words, unless you’re quitting your job to train for multiple hours a day and eat a very calculated caloric surplus, bulking won’t be an issue for you. (But also, let’s stop worrying about taking up more space, shall we?)
    If you’re not sure where to begin, start with the basic lifts: squat, deadlifts, bench, overhead press, and row. Start with a weight that feels challenging but manageable, and increase by 10% as the weight begins to feel easier. When in doubt, always check out local trainers, coaches, classes, or online programs. Having correct form is the most important aspect of targeting the right muscles and preventing injury. 

    2. I cared more about the food I ate 
    While fad diets and nutritional misinformation are still running rampant on social media, the tried-and-true methodology of a balanced diet (protein, carbohydrates, and healthy fats) is always a safe bet. Protein helps repair muscle tissue and keeps you feeling satisfied for longer. Carbohydrates give the body fuel to perform physical activity and basic functions of life—like breathing or thinking. Fat helps the body absorb vitamins and provides it with fatty acids that provide energy and support cell function. For your body to function at its best, all three of these macronutrients must be present in your diet in the right balance.
    The golden rule that changed everything for me: If it isn’t going to help my body perform a function, improve my training, or aid in recovery, it’s not a part of my everyday diet. While there are always exceptions, 80% of the time, I eat to fuel, and I’ve never felt (or looked) better.

    3. I put more importance on sleep and recovery
    We all have those times when work causes major stress, social obligations wreck our sleep, and the physical ramifications of being spread too thin take their toll. Stress, lack of sleep, and not enough focus on physical recovery (such as stretching, foam rolling, Epsom salt baths, and other self-care practices) truly impact how our bodies perform and, ultimately, how we feel in them. When we don’t sleep or recover fully, we cannot perform at our best in the gym. Plus, we’re more likely to mindlessly binge on junk food, alcohol, or snacking when we’re stressed or tired.
    If you want to improve the way your body looks, you’ve got to improve how your body feels. Getting 8-10 hours of sleep each night and giving your body what it needs to recover after a long day or a grueling workout must be a top priority. Also, rest days are just as important for your health as workout days.

    4. I spent time with the right people
    In my past, my friendships revolved around drinking wine, gossiping, charcuterie boards, and late-night parties. Nowadays, I surround myself with people who enjoy eating right, being positive, supporting one another, and taking care of themselves, so they feel their best. The old adage is true: You really are the sum of the five people you spend the most time with, so make sure that your circle of friends is pushing you in the right direction.
    I saw massive changes in my body when I started spending time with people whose habits I wanted to emulate. Now, instead of drinking and partying, I meet my friends at the gym for a fun, butt-kicking workout, followed by a delicious and healthy lunch. While we aren’t immune to the occasional movie night with chips and popcorn, we definitely enjoy making feel-good decisions most of the time. If your group of friends isn’t helping you to become the best version of yourself, it might be time to rethink your friendships.

    5. I learned that consistency is key
    You’re not always going to be motivated. You’re not always going to feel your best. You won’t always be excited, and you’ll probably have plenty of days where you simply don’t feel like it. However, real change takes real time and staying consistent—with your fitness, nutrition, and positive habits—is the only way you’ll see real results. Nothing happens overnight. So, if you really want to see a change in your body, you’ve got to stick with it. Sure, bad days are inevitable. No one can be perfect all the time. But if you can commit to being consistent at least 80% of the time, you’re bound to see changes. 

    I’m a Fitness Coach and These 5 Easy Habits Keep Me in Shape More

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    Run In Comfort Over Any Distance With The New Under Armour HOVR Infinite 4

    Spring is a great season to start upping your running game and we’ve been testing for the perfect pair to make you excited to get out and run, while covering all your running needs at the same time. 
    The great thing about the UA HOVR Infinite 4 is the versatility of the shoe like this covers all the bases. Whether you’re going for a short run or taking on those long-distances, the new HOVR Infinite 4 is the queen of comfort. Much like its predecessor, Under Armour’s game changing HOVR Infinite range is a go to running shoe for all types of runners across the globe.
    What’s New? 
    Unboxing the new addition to the UA HOVR family you will immediately notice the exciting new look from this extensive makeover, and the new changes do not disappoint. The most important part of any road shoe is the midsole and its ability to keep you in comfort for the duration of your run so that the energy you put in is channeled into your pace, rather than worrying about any troubles with your feet. UA have kept the reliable, smooth, secure feel of the infinite by changing the cushioning midsole system, rethinking the outsole and simplifying the upper, resulting in a lighter, softer and more durable every day running shoe.
    High Impact
    The change of the midsole has been a significant technical mashup to deliver more efficient cushioning. By unwrapping and flipping the UA HOVR cushioning you now get a smoother sensation as the foot moves through the natural gait cycle, which for most runners starts with a heel strike. From here, most of the impact is absorbed in the midsole with a smooth transition to the toe off. A new upper has simplified the amount of fabric used to result in just one-piece of airy mesh, which means a lighter ride, and together with the 3D moulded insole, cradles your foot to help keep it securely in place. 
    Miles of Comfort 
    Coming back to the gait, we approve of the outsole makeover, which reveals anatomically placed deep flex grooves to provide flexibility in key areas to work with the natural forces in your stride and smoothly take you through each cycle to build up a smooth rhythm of running. This means you save energy. Unless you burn it on going even faster – recommended!
    New carbon rubber lugs under the heel offer improved traction and durability in high-impact strike zones to help propel you forward with greater confidence – another reason to up the tempo!

    At A Glance 

    Engineered mesh upper is extremely lightweight & breathable, with strategic support where you need it
    3D-molded sock liner cradles your foot for enhanced step-in comfort
    Responsive UA HOVR cushioning reduces impact, returns energy & helps propel you forward
    Anatomically placed, deep flex grooves offer flexibility in key areas
    Carbon rubber pods under the heel deliver greater traction and durability for those high-impact strike zones

    Stay Connected
    What we love about the whole Under Armour running range is the standard inclusion of Bluetooth in every pair of shoes. The insert in the heel records the data of your running gait, step count, ground contact time, strike angle and a whole lot more insight to analyse post run on the, free to download, MapMyRun app for your phone. It’s a simple matter of pairing your app with your shoe and then you don’t even need to run with your phone as the shoe itself is recording all the metrics. If you do run with your phone you can get the added benefits of having a real-time virtual coach advising you while you’re running. Bring on a spring full of running. 
    The new HOVR Infinite 4 is available in multiple colourways at Under Armour Brand House stores nationwide as well as online for R2899:
    *In Partnership with Under Armour More

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    I Tried Ashley Tisdale’s Workout Routine–You’ll Be Shocked at the Benefits

    Over the years, I’ve tried many different workouts: spin, running, HIIT, yoga, Pilates, you name it. I’m always open to trying a new form of exercise. But after experimenting with so many different workouts, I started questioning which of them were actually the most beneficial for my body. The reality is that all movement is good, but each of our bodies is different. When you look deeper at your overall health, you can better understand the best type of exercise for you.
    Ashley Tisdale came to this realization when her doctor told her that she had borderline thyroid issues. The thyroid plays an important role in providing the body with energy by releasing hormones and balancing metabolism. Ashley used to swear by CrossFit, but it requires much more energy in short bursts as opposed to a lower-impact workout that may require the same amount of energy over a longer period of time. Short-burst workouts, such as CrossFit, can cause more stress on the thyroid gland. After learning about her health concerns and addressing them with her trainer, Harley Pasternak, they came up with a new workout routine to help balance her hormones. 

    The workout
    The workout is a combination of walking 14,000 steps a day and incorporating low-impact strength workouts three days a week. This workout may sound much easier than a HIIT class, but do not be deceived. Just because it’s low-impact, it doesn’t mean you won’t break a sweat. While there are a wide variety of low-impact workouts you can do at home with minimal equipment, the workouts Ashley does involve a cable machine, a seated abduction machine, and dumbbells. She starts by doing 10-15 reps of clamshells on either side. Then, she moves on to do 10-15 reps of supine cable triceps pushdowns. After that, she does 10-15 reps of seated abductions before moving onto a three-move circuit. This circuit involves 20 reps of resisted hip thrusts, lying dumbbell triceps extensions, and supine cable abductions. She repeats this circuit five times.

    My experience
    I’ve been told by my doctor that low-impact workouts such as yoga, Pilates, and walking are beneficial for me because of my body type. So, needless to say, I was all too eager to try out Ashley Tisdale’s routine. I started the week with a goal of hitting 14,000 steps. (I usually aim for 10,000, so I knew it was going to be a challenge.)
    If you’re like me and work an office job, you can relate to how little time there is in the day to get your steps in, let alone a workout. To make this happen, I decided to break it up. In the morning before work, I woke up a little earlier than usual and started my day with a half-hour walk, which equaled around 4,000 steps. Throughout my work day, I tried to incorporate walking whenever I could: taking a walking meeting, spending my lunch break going for a walk, or simply stepping away from my desk for ten minutes to walk around the office as a mental health break. By the end of the day, I had done another 3,000 steps. After work, I put on an audiobook and went for a long walk. That led me to end my day at just under 14,000 steps. 
    As someone who doesn’t usually enjoy going to the gym, Ashley Tisdale’s strength workouts were a little outside of my comfort zone. I took my time moving through each exercise and found that while the machines were new to me, the workouts were easy to understand. By the time I came around to repeating the circuit, I was definitely feeling the effects and confident about my movements. In the end, the workout took about 45 minutes to complete, and while I wasn’t walking out sweating like I would from a spin class, I still felt tired and sore.

    The verdict
    If I learned anything about getting your steps in, it’s the importance of breaking them up throughout the day. Fourteen thousand steps can feel overwhelming, but by breaking them up, accomplishing them becomes more attainable. I also thoroughly enjoyed starting my day with some fresh air and movement. I was able to go to work feeling energized and mentally clear. But the highlight of trying Ashley’s workout was taking as many chances as possible to move throughout the workday. Sitting at a desk for eight hours is quite hard on the body and brain. By opting for walking meetings and breaks, I accomplished more work and ended the day feeling even better than I had in the past. 
    Ashley Tisdale’s low-impact workout was a great combination of targeting different muscle groups. In addition, it made me feel like I was working my body without the hormonal effects I sometimes get from high-intensity workouts. I didn’t repeat her strength workout three times during the week because I like to switch it up. Instead, I did other low-impact workouts, including going to a yoga class and doing an at-home obé Fitness Pilates workout. In the end, I learned that just because a workout may seem less impactful, that doesn’t mean it is. And, if you’re looking for a way to stick with an exercise routine that doesn’t make your hormones spike, Ashley Tisdale’s workout is a winner.

    Here’s What Mindy Kaling Swears by for a Healthy Life More

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    Fire Up Your Workout Sessions With The HUAWEI FIT WATCH 2

    Picking the right smartwatch to track your fitness can be daunting, we know. You need to consider its compatibility, what type of sport the watch supports, whether the battery will last throughout your workout sessions and if you will have access to messages and important calls. Most importantly, you need a watch that will support and enhance your performance.
    Look no further because The HUAWEI WATCH FIT 2 is exactly what you need. With a sleek and fashionable design, Bluetooth calling and instant message reply, durable battery life, comprehensive health management and fitness tracking, in addition to a myriad of convenient life assistant features, it is the ideal companion. 

    Here are all the reasons we’re loving this smartwatch:
    1/ You Can Stay Mobile And Connected While Improving Your Fitness 
    The HUAWEI WATCH FIT 2 now comes with a built-in speaker. Um, yes please! Whether it is doing chores at home, walking, running, cycling, or hiking, phone call information can be pushed to the watch instantly. You can answer and hang up calls through the smartwatch by tapping the button without taking out your smartphone, providing an effective and convenient experience.
    If you aren’t available to answer your phone, you can quickly reply with a short message. The reply can be customised in the HUAWEI Health App, allowing you to always stay online and not miss out on anything important. You can also reply quickly to messages via instant messaging apps from the HUAWEI WATCH FIT 2 itself.
    Plus, with exclusive fitness animations, voice-guided warm up stretches for common workouts, including running, cycling, and swimming, you can get the most out of every training session. 
    READ MORE: Why The HUAWEI Watch GT 3 Pro Is The Best Smartwatch Of 2022
    2/ It Has A Battery Life That Goes Beyond Your Training Sessions
    The HUAWEI WATCH FIT 2 features a large battery in its compact design. To ensure a comfortable and uninterrupted experience, this smartwatch supports fast charging technology.
    With a 5-minute charge, the HUAWEI WATCH FIT 2 can be used for up to 24 hours. Under typical usage scenario, the smartwatch can be used for 10 days and 7 days in heavy usage scenarios. 

    3/ You’ll Get A Health Manager For Smarter Living 
    The HUAWEI WATCH FIT 2 provides all-round health management such as SpO2 monitoring, heart rate, sleep, stress and breath monitoring to help you keep track of your physical changes. At the same time, with the HUAWEI Health App on the smartphone, it can synchronise health-monitoring data in real time.
    Working out, mental health and sleep are at the core of a healthy lifestyle. The HUAWEI Health App is fully upgraded with the healthy living management, which helps to develop self-discipline workout routine and active health management.
    Through personalised settings, you can receive regular reminders such as health challenges, daily water intake, medication reminders, daily mindfulness, early sleep reminders and exercise volume. It will also send reminders to ensure you practice good and healthy living habits during busy times. We *looooove* this!
    READ MORE: 3 New Functional And Fashionable HUAWEI Wearables You Need RN
    4/ It Is Your Personalised Sports Companion
    Lastly, it is based on HUAWEI’s running ability index (RAI), which can assess user’s ability based on height, weight, age and other physical conditions, alongside historical running data to create a customised personal running plan for every user.
    The HUAWEI WATCH FIT 2 also supports offline music playback meaning you can manage your desired music playback through mobile apps, match different playlists to different sports and enjoy your music anytime, anywhere. 
    If you are looking to enhance your performance while training for your next race or simply want to beat your previous sport’s records, then the HUAWEI WATCH FIT 2 is a great companion. You can connect to all calls and messages whilst on the go, go beyond your scheduled time with the long-lasting battery and track your health with the SpO2 monitoring, heart rate, sleep, stress, and breath monitoring function. What more could you want?
    For only R3 299 you can get the HUAWEI WATCH FIT 2 from the HUAWEI Online Store and at selected retailers. 

    *In Partnership With HUAWEI More

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    Emotions Might Be Stored in Your Hips—Here’s How To Release Them

    I’ll be honest: Yoga is not my cup of tea. With my Type 1 personality, I get frustrated over whether I’m doing the poses correctly and have a hard time getting behind the slow pace. But when I do give it a try, I can’t help but let out an audible “ahhh” as I release pent-up emotions with each hip-opening pose. There’s no denying the strong mind-body connection we all possess, and the hips are the window to our emotions.
    Whether or not you realize it, you can hold onto experiences, stress, memories, and trauma in different parts of your body if they’re not processed. This can include the hips, jaw, neck, and shoulders. The good news? I tapped into the know-how of experts to learn why emotions get trapped in our hips. I also learned how to work through releasing them. Spoiler alert: Hip stretches are life-changing. Let the healing begin. 

    How and why do emotions get stored in the hips?
    We can all attest to how our emotions manifest physically in our bodies: butterflies in our stomachs, racing heartbeats, tightness in our chests, rosy cheeks. But why do we feel a significant release when we focus on the hips? “The hips are often referred to as the ‘junk drawer’ of the body because they have the unique ability to store quite a bit of unprocessed emotion,” said Megan Sherer, a licensed holistic therapist.
    “The deep muscles of our hips are closely connected to the adrenal glands, which are responsible for processing our fight-or-flight emotions. They are also our biggest stabilizing muscles and can often clench or become tight in moments of emotional activation or trigger. The tissues in our hips hold onto the unprocessed emotions from these moments as a way for the subconscious mind to remember to avoid that same trigger in the future,”  Sherer explained.
    Considering the hips are the largest joint in our bodies, they bear a lot of the weight—literally and figuratively. They are integral to how the entire body functions. “[The hips and glutes] are responsible for not only the complete movement of our legs in the hip joint, but also for muscles relative to walking, breathing, digesting, and sexual activities,” elaborated Leah Ehinger. Ehinger is a somatic therapist, yoga instructor, and trauma-informed personal trainer.
    “The hip area is associated with your sacral chakra, which holds our creative and sexual energy,” described Sarah Donner, a holistic health coach and founder of Siva Wellness. “Your sacral chakra is believed to be a big part of our emotional world and how we relate to others. When we do not express our wants and needs, the sacral energy can get stuck and cause physical pain on top of an emotional one.”
    That said, you can let go of trapped emotions in a variety of ways. Mind-body practices such as yoga, mindfulness, breathwork, and meditation can help release emotions. Stretching can help with this too.

    Stretches to open the hips 
    1. Pigeon Pose
    From your hands and knees, bring one knee forward toward the corresponding wrist. When you’re ready, extend the opposite leg out behind you, pointing your heel up toward the ceiling. As you inhale, lengthen your spine, draw your belly button to your spine, and open your chest. On your next exhale, slowly walk your hands forward as you bring your chest toward the floor. Then, repeat on the other side. 

    2. Low Lunge 
    Begin in the Downward-facing Dog Pose. Step one foot forward between your hands. Make sure your knee is bent at a 90-degree angle and stacked over your heel. Lower your back knee to the floor and slide the foot back until you feel a nice stretch in the hip and thigh. Keep the hips low and level. As you inhale, engage your core, lift your chest away from the thigh, and extend your arms overhead. Then, repeat on the opposite side. 

    3. Lizard Pose
    Start in a Low Lunge. Then, inch your front foot out to the side, creating a wide lunge. From there, take your back knee off the floor and plant your hands or forearms on the floor beside your front foot. Keeping your chest forward, navel in, and back leg extended, hold the pose for 10 seconds. Then, repeat on the opposite side. 

    PSA: Stress Can Mess With Your Vaginal Health More

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    A Battery That Has Your Back, Literally

    FAQ: How long will my Garmin smartwatch battery last?
    Answer: Longer than most other smartwatch brands — that’s for sure! If you find yourself charging your smartwatch overnight, regularly, then know that your smartwatch is falling short. A smartwatch battery life that only lasts a day — or even just a couple — means that you’re missing out on  accurately tracking your body’s physiological metrics. 
    We hate to be the bearer of bad news, but eeerrr…a smartwatch that spends more time in the charger than on your wrist gives a less accurate picture of your overall health and fitness status — not to mention that you’re missing out on the smart notifications you’ve come to rely on.  
    READ MORE: The Garmin Forerunner 255 Series Is A Perfect Match For Racing Addicts
    The Venu SQ gives you 5 days of battery life before having to recharge.
    Luckily, you have a reliable friend in Garmin smartwatch batteries. They last a long time, and we mean a long time! At minimum, you should be getting up to 5 days of battery life before having to recharge (Venu SQ) — and up to 50 days maximum. (Yep, you read right – the Garmin Enduro™ for instance, boasts up to 50 days in smartwatch mode — or 65 if you’re using solar charging.) It all depends on the features that matter most to you and the smartwatch that’s a great fit for your lifestyle!
    The Garmin Enduro™ boasts up to 50 days of battery life in smartwatch mode
    *In Partnership with Garmin More

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    3 New Functional And Fashionable HUAWEI Wearables You Need RN

    PSA! Three new HUAWEI functional wearables are now available in South African stores and HUAWEI’s online store, ready for you to up your fitness and fashion game.
    The HUAWEI WATCH FIT 2, the HUAWEI Band 7 and HUAWEI WATCH GT 3 Pro are a milestone in the evolution of fitness and health wearables devices. 
    The two smartwatches and fitness band maintain the quality of high-end luxury watches in terms of design and materials, come with an incredibly long battery life and a host of advanced features to help users discover new ways to live a healthy and active lifestyle. 
    These Are The 3 Wearables Guaranteed To Be Your Fitness BFF:
    The HUAWEI WATCH FIT 2: The new fashionable smartwatch to impress you  

    HUAWEI’s WATCH FIT 2 comes with a 1.74-inch AMOLED HD HUAWEI fullview display that is 18.6% larger than that of the previous iteration. The smartwatch screen-to-body ratio also stands tall at 72.2% meaning you get an amazing viewing experience.
    When it comes to its fashionable look, the HUAWEI WATCH FIT 2 comes with a variety of straps. Yes, please! There is a soft and comfortable rubber strap and an exquisite and elegant leather strap. All these straps come in a variety of colours and styles. That’s not all — the HUAWEI WATCH FIT 2 features a press-to-release “link” design, which allows you to quickly change your straps without the use of any tools.  
    Staying connected is inherent in your HUAWEI smartwatch. Thanks to the bluetooth call feature, speaker and microphone, you can stay in touch with colleagues and your loved ones. No matter where you are, your phone calls can be pushed to your watch instantly. You can answer and end calls through the smartwatch without taking out your smartphone. If users are not available to answer the phone, they can quickly reply in the form of a short message with one tap. The reply can be customised in the HUAWEI Health App, allowing users to always stay online and not miss anything important. Users can also reply quickly to messages via instant messaging apps from the watch itself. The HUAWEI WATCH Fit 2 is packed with battery power that can last up to 10 days, 
    The HUAWEI WATCH FIT 2 also provides all-rounded health management such as SpO2 monitoring, heart rate, sleep, stress, and breathing monitoring to help you keep track of your physical changes. At the same time, with the HUAWEI Health App on the smartphone, it can synchronise health-monitoring data in real time, allowing you to keep an eye on your physical and mental health. What more could we ask for?!
    READ MORE: The 7-Minute Fat-Blasting Workout That’ll Tone All Over
    The HUAWEI Band 7: The Ultra-thin fullview smart band to power your endurance levels 

    The ultra-thin smart band with a long battery life comes with impressive health management and workout monitoring features. This stylish wearable is for both the young millennials and always on-the-move fitness enthusiasts (okay, that’s us!) The HUAWEI Band 7 is only 9.99mm thick and weighs just 16 grams which makes the smart band a whole lot more comfortable to wear while doing your favourite activities. 
    It provides a slew of health management features, like monitoring of SpO2, it also boasts HUAWEI TruSeen™ 4.0 a heart rate monitoring technology. Thanks to the HUAWEI TruSleepTM 2.0 technology, the band can assess sleep quality without disturbing the user’s sleep, and accurately identifies six types of typical sleep problems. Lastly, the HUAWEI TruRelaxTM technology will help you keep an eye on your stress levels, and the band will remind you to do breathing exercises to release stress when needed.
    In order to meet your fitness goals, the HUAWEI Band 7 comes with an expansive range of fitness features to kick-start an active lifestyle. The smart band uses TruSport™ algorithms to measure the training index of runners, and the running ability index (RAI) can tell you a great deal about your endurance level and the efficiency of your running technique. 
    READ MORE: So Many Of Us Get Knee Pain Running – Here Are 5 Possible Causes + What to Do About Them
    The HUAWEI WATCH GT 3 Pro: Where Tech meets elegance on your wrist

    This watch is an elegant and everlasting masterpiece. It emulates the look and feel of classic luxury watches with its signature Moon Phase Collection, therefore, stuns with its premium ID design. It comes in two variants: Titanium Edition and Ceramic Edition, which are both finessed with state-of-the-art craftsmanship.
    In terms of health, the HUAWEI WATCH GT 3 Pro series supports ECG (Electrocardiogram) data collection, which can accurately provide single-lead ECG measurements, real-time analysis, sinus rhythm and atrial fibrillation detection, and premature atrial and ventricular beat reminders for users and supports arterial stiffness detection, allowing you to actively prevent the risk of vascular diseases. The HUAWEI WATCH GT 3 Pro series can also provide continuous, real-time, and accurate SpO2, sleep and stress monitoring features for comprehensive health management. The latest HUAWEI TruSeenTM 5.0+ increases the data processing capacity by four times, reducing the signal loss rate, and improving the accuracy of heart rate and SpO2 monitoring. 
    Our Verdict:
    After looking at all three, it is evident that these three wearables come with exceptional features. With a lasting battery life and advanced fitness and health management features, it’s clear that they are in a league of their own.
    Where To Get One:
    All three fitness trackers are now available in South Africa. You can get the HUAWEI WATCH FIT 2 from R3 299, the HUAWEI Band 7 from R1 699 and the HUAWEI WATCH GT 3 Pro from only R10 999 from HUAWEI’s Online Store or at selected retailers. 
    *In Partnership with HUAWEI More

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    Strengthen your core in the comfort of your home with this online platform


    by Amy Sessions
    3 hours ago

    Bryony Deery, Founder of The Platform, takes us through her tips to get beach ready.
    What do the first 30 minutes of your day look like at home and how does this differ on vacation?
    During the week I wake up between 5:45-6am, drink a big glass of water and then head downstairs to make my collagen matcha using Enso matcha and Dose & Co Dairy Free collagen. I then take it back up to the bed, I love this me-time. I like to begin my day with a meditation and afterwards, I grab my journal and write my to-do list, my intentions for that day and any thoughts/feelings that come up during my meditation practice. There is something so powerful about early mornings and it’s crucial for me to have an hour to myself before I start my first client at 7am. My routine fits in around the type of vacation I’m on depending on the time difference and whether I have later evenings etc but generally the mornings start in the same way with my mind and body routine followed by a later breakfast. I want to feel my best on holiday and daily movement and mindfulness helps me achieve this. I am less strict on holiday but I like to alternate Pilates with morning walks.
    Can you take us through your top de-bloating tips to be beach ready?
    For me being beach ready is more of a mindset and feeling confident and comfortable in my own skin. Naturally, if I am doing Pilates and meditating my cortisol levels are reduced and therefore I have less inflammation in my body and tend to feel less bloated. On the days thatI am suffering from bloating I have a video on my app that are my go-tos for debloating, perfect for that time of the month andit really does work! Focusing on my gut health is a daily non-negotiable but drinking lots of water, cutting out excess salt, dry brushing and lymphatic drainage massage are all pre-holiday essentials for me.
    Do you exercise each day on vacation and if so when do you carve out time for this?
    I naturally like to always stay active whether I am on holiday or at home. I like to do Pilates first thing before breakfast and then tend to do a walk after breakfast and sometimes again at the end of the day. Walking along a beach with a podcast is pure heaven and such a magical way to start the day and boost your mood. We can all find reasons not to find the time but I am disciplined on this and always make sure I invest in myself and my mental and physical health and schedule the time in each day. I love how Pilates is so easy to do anywhere whether you’re in your hotel room, on the beach, or on a balcony.
    How long have you been using body gua sha and skin brushing and what effect have you seen from implementing these practices?
    I have been body brushing for years! I could talk about the benefits all day long. It helped me with water retention, bloating, detoxing, and skin elasticity and it makes me feel alive before a cold shower in the morning. I love to use my body gua sha to aid in lymphatic drainage and release any buildup there. I do this twice a day and it has become a staple in my bathroom routine.
    How often should we be doing this?
    Once a day minimum. Every day, no excuses!

    What are your go-to products for sun protection as in face, body and hair?

    I never put my face in the sun, I wear a huge hat, sunglasses and sit with my face and chest in the shade. I want to avoid sun damage as much as I can. I use Eurcerin oil control SPF 50 on my face and I like Institut esthederm or ultrasun for my body. Pre-holiday I swear by Amanda Harrington fake tan for the body and tan luxe for the face. Buy both now and thank me later.
    Are you a light packer or a heavy packer and are there any go-to pieces you always pack for vacation?
    I like to pack by outfits so I know I have the right looks for each occasion but then will also add a few extra pieces that I know will go with everything. I always pack a blazer for colder evenings, a comfy but cool pair of trainers that can double up for travel and workouts, oversized shirts that I can wear on the beach over bikinis, Hermes Oran sandals for day-to-night looks and I’m a real fan of maxi skirts as I find them so elegant and flattering with a crop top or bodysuit. My real secret must-have for packing is Muji packing cubes, they are incredibly functional and make unpacking the dream. I am militant when it comes to packing and travel.
    Travelling can disrupt our routines. How do you ensure you maintain your habits?
    By reminding myself that routine is what makes me feel good and asking myself how I want to feel today. I know that my daily rituals are what makes me feel grounded, at peace and healthy. The book Atomic Habits is one of my favourites and a book I recommend to all of my friends. I really believe that staying consistent with small daily habits amount to a big shift in your day and week!
    You recently launched Pilates By Bryony The App – do you find there is a huge demand to work out remotely and what made you take the leap?
    Without a doubt. Since COVID-19 there was a big shift in our attitude towards home workouts. People saw that they could achieve results at home, save time and money on gym membership fees, and fit the sessions in around their home life. There has absolutely been an increase in online fitness, I started with 15 people joining my zoom classes and I am now able to connect with people all over the world via the app. I feel so happy and fulfilled knowing that I can reach so many people and help in some way with their mental and physical well-being.

    “Drinking lots of water, cutting out excess salt, dry brushing and lymphatic drainage massages are pre-holiday essentials for me.” 

    What have been the biggest challenges to date and how did you overcome them?
    Having a scalable platform for lots of users in- evitably has its challenges but I am a firm believer that there is always a way to figure it out and lessons to learn along the way. I am lucky to have a team of incredibly talented people that have been invaluable to me, especially in the last few months. My meditation practice has changed me as a person and in these stressful times I manage to stay relatively calm and positive and tell myself that there is always a solution. Without meditation, I wouldn’t be able to deal with the stressful situations that building a business can bring so I am very grateful for that.
    How have you found social media in terms of supporting brand growth?
    It’s almost impossible to build a brand in today’s climate without having a social media presence and it is a key driver for growth in the online fitness industry. It is also a brilliant business tool and allows you to access insights into your audience and speak directly to the consumer. It still blows my mind how quickly a business can grow based on one key share of a story.
    How do you approach scaling without compromising on quality?
    Scaling a subscription business should never impact quality. I strive to improve the quality as I scale and really listen to my audience. It was harder to deliver quality before launching The Platform because the growth was quicker than I had expected, so I had to figure it out and find a way to grow and develop with demand. I am always read- ing books on startups and businesses as I love to learn.
    This is The Summer Escape Issue – where would you like to escape to this summer?
    With the nature of the business, it can be difficult to completely switch off and escape but I am hoping to really cut down in August and go to Mykonos. I’d like to spend more time in the sur- rounding Greek islands as they look so beautiful and undiscovered. Last summer I worked non stop so the aim of this summer is to work smarter and have more balance when I am away.
    July/August’s – The Summer Escape Issue – Download Now
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