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    The 30 Best Winter Workout Gear To Bag, RN

    If you’re looking for comfy warmth during cold-weather sessions, look no further than this winter workout gear. The pieces we’ve chosen have added warmth without that stuffy feeling, repel moisture like a toxic ex and keep you cool but comfy during early-morning runs, outdoor sessions in the wind and more.

    Sports bras

    adidas Lift Your Mind Powerreact bra

    Made for that compressive-ain’t-going-nowhere feel, this bra offers support for lifting and light runs and training sessions. Plus, with at least 60% of it made from recycled materials, you can’t go wrong.

    Asics Nagino seamless bra

    Made for low-impact workouts, this stretchy bra accommodates your movements. 50% of the materials are recycled (yay!) and there are breathable zones at the back to facilitate airflow during the sweatiest of sessions.

    Cotton On Workout training crop

    This high-support bra, made with adjustable straps for those of us with ever-changing bodies, is made to support. It’s also go an adjustable clasp and of course, moisture-wicking fabric.

    New Balance Shape Shield Printed Crop Bra

    Moisture-wicking NB DRYx technology keeps you from getting that icy sweat feel when running in the cold. It’s also uber stretchy while being lightweight and provides maximum coverage.

    ACTV8 Extreme Control Black Crop

    Made with moisture-wicking fabric, offering high support and adjustable straps, this bra will tackle jumps, direction changes and lunges with ease.

    Tights

    Copenhagen Cartel Power leggings

    Copenhagen Cartel products are made from almost 80% reclaimed ocean waste and contribute to cleaning up our oceans. They’re breathable and don’t show through, no matter how deeply you squat. Bonus: pockets included, people!

    Kheper VPOP tights

    We LOVE a local brand and these cute tights can take you from the gym straight to the party. Plus, they’re odour-resistant, which is super helpful when it comes to those rank sweaty smells. Plus, they’re super soft.

    Mr Price Sport Elite Power Tights

    With expert detailing that elongate and shape your legs, these tights are also stretchy, so you can horse pose away in comfort while moisture-wicking fabric pulls sweat away from the body, to keep you dry. Bonus: pockets!

    Reebok Lux Perform High-Rise Tights

    These compression tights, with high waistband, will have you feeling secure as you power through HIIT workouts. Mesh panels at the back create more breathability, plus there’s odour-repelling tech so your gear doesn’t smell awful.

    Under Armour Outrun the cold tight II 9

    Not only are these tights beautiful, they’re also teched-out. Under Armour Storm Technology provides protection from the elements, whether it be wind or rain. Moisture rolls right off of the surface, allowing you to stay dry when conditions take a turn for the worse. It also has a few pockets – score!

    Tops

    adidas Lift Your Mind Training Graphic Sweatshirt

    Yes, you can train in this sweater. It’s made with moisture-wicking fabric while keeping you snug during cold sessions outdoors. Bigger sleeves create that little bit extra room to move around in.

    Mr Price Sport Crop Top

    This warm and stylish cover-up with criss-cross detailing on the hem will keep you toasty during runs and errands in the cold.

    Under Armour Outrun The Cold top

    This top won’t allow the elements in, and moisture rolls right off. It’s also kitted out with little peep-holes so you can check your smartwatch without having to roll up your sleeves. Plus, the higher neckline keeps you protected from wind and rain. What’s not to love?

    Nike Therma-FIT One

    Soft fleece is the main material used in this top but it won’t overheat you. It remains sweat-wicking while the stylish cut flatters those tights you love so much.

    Jackets

    Asics visibility jacket

    This jacket, made from lightweight fabric, protects you from the elements, while mesh under the arm area keeps you cool and sweat-free. Front pockets are also clutch for storing the essentials.

    Burnt Aspen Lightweight Jacket

    Lightweight but warm, this stunning pullover does away with wind and rain on your top half. The high collar with a rounded hoodie and a quarter lightweight zip allows you to adjust the warmth. Plus: pockets for the essentials.

    K-Way Cascade Waterproof Rain jacket

    Think of this jacket as the shell protecting you from the elements. Its high neckline keeps out wind and icy droplets, plus the straps on the arms mean you can easily adjust the tightness. And you can draw the hood tighter around your face with adjustable straps.

    Nike Therma-FIT ADV Women’s Downfill Running Gilet

    This body warmer is so soft but durable and can be folded up into the side pockets for when you’re ready to layer down. Since it’s made from down feathers and finished with water-repellent fabric, you’ll stay cosy.

    ACTV8 Hyper Glide Grey Run Jacket

    With an adjustable hood, this jacket takes you from rain to windy days with ease. It’s also got reflective tech so you’re fully seen on those evening or morning runs.

    Shoes

    adidas X_Plrboost Shoes

    Made with a series of recycled materials, this upper features at least 50% recycled content. It’s also responsive, since it uses proprietary BOOST tech to propel you forwards and hit the ground flying.

    Under Armour Hovr Machina 3 Storm

    These shoes are made for running, with UA Storm technology treated upper that repels water without sacrificing breathability. Responsive UA HOVR™ cushioning reduces impact, returns energy & helps propel you forward. All-over reflectivity keeps you visible on low-light sessions.

    Reebok Nano X3

    Finally, a training shoe you can actually run in! An all-new Lift and Run Chassis system compresses when you lift and creates support, but when you push off to run, it gives you that extra oomph to go faster. Keep a lookout for this shoe drop; it launches on the 8th May.

    Puma ForeverRUN NITRO

    Made this stability in mind, pronators will love this shoe. An asymmetrical heel counter holds the foot in place through every stride while a firm density ankle support keeps your foot stabilised. The cushioned sole also responds to pressure, with nitrogen-injected foam designed to provide superior responsiveness.

    New Balance Fresh Foam X 1080 v12

    Made for both training and running, this shoe does it all. Part of the shoe is made with renewable resources to reduce the carbon impact while the sole spreads pressure evenly throughout to give you superior comfort.

    Accessories

    Fit Gymwear Face Cover

    Icy mornings will no longer prosper over you! This breathable face cover allows you to breathe while taking out the sting of cold air whipping your face.

    Cotton On Active Drink bottle

    Stainless steel keeps our coffee hot for post-run drinks while this fun colour matches your outfit nicely. You can’t go wrong with a spill-proof built-in straw, either.

    Cotton On Active Crossbody Bag

    Adjustable straps mean you can wear this as a fanny pack during your runs and then convert it into a chic crossbody bag for running errands. There are pockets galore for storing your phone, cards, keys and anything else.

    Old Khaki Aztec Multi-Scarf

    Cold no more! This multi-scarf can be worn over your arms, legs or neck for added comfort on long, chilly hikes, boot camps and runs.

    Burnt Activewear Daily Crew Socks

    Reviewers say it feels like you’re walking on clouds and they’re just so aesthetically pleasing over a pair of tights and your fave sneakers.

    Mr Price Sport Reflective Arm Warmer

    Wear these under your top for added warmth and layer down when you get warm enough. They’re breathable and light without feeling like there’s a boa constrictor on your arm.

    Women’s Health participates in various affiliate marketing programmes, which means we may get commissions on editorially chosen products purchased through our links to retailer sites. More

  • in

    The 28 Best Winter Workout Gear To Bag, RN

    If you’re looking for comfy warmth during cold-weather sessions, look no further than this winter workout gear. The pieces we’ve chosen have added warmth without that stuffy feeling, repel moisture like a toxic ex and keep you cool but comfy during early-morning runs, outdoor sessions in the wind and more.

    Sports bras

    adidas Lift Your Mind Powerreact bra

    Made for that compressive-ain’t-going-nowhere feel, this bra offers support for lifting and light runs and training sessions. Plus, with at least 60% of it made from recycled materials, you can’t go wrong.

    Asics Nagino seamless bra

    Made for low-impact workouts, this stretchy bra accommodates your movements. 50% of the materials are recycled (yay!) and there are breathable zones at the back to facilitate airflow during the sweatiest of sessions.

    Cotton On Workout training crop

    This high-support bra, made with adjustable straps for those of us with ever-changing bodies, is made to support. It’s also go an adjustable clasp and of course, moisture-wicking fabric.

    New Balance Shape Shield Printed Crop Bra

    Moisture-wicking NB DRYx technology keeps you from getting that icy sweat feel when running in the cold. It’s also uber stretchy while being lightweight and provides maximum coverage.

    Tights

    Copenhagen Cartel Power leggings

    Copenhagen Cartel products are made from almost 80% reclaimed ocean waste and contribute to cleaning up our oceans. They’re breathable and don’t show through, no matter how deeply you squat. Bonus: pockets included, people!

    Kheper VPOP tights

    We LOVE a local brand and these cute tights can take you from the gym straight to the party. Plus, they’re odour-resistant, which is super helpful when it comes to those rank sweaty smells. Plus, they’re super soft.

    Mr Price Sport Elite Power Tights

    With expert detailing that elongate and shape your legs, these tights are also stretchy, so you can horse pose away in comfort while moisture-wicking fabric pulls sweat away from the body, to keep you dry. Bonus: pockets!

    Reebok Lux Perform High-Rise Tights

    These compression tights, with high waistband, will have you feeling secure as you power through HIIT workouts. Mesh panels at the back create more breathability, plus there’s odour-repelling tech so your gear doesn’t smell awful.

    Under Armour Outrun the cold tight II 9

    Not only are these tights beautiful, they’re also teched-out. Under Armour Storm Technology provides protection from the elements, whether it be wind or rain. Moisture rolls right off of the surface, allowing you to stay dry when conditions take a turn for the worse. It also has a few pockets – score!

    Tops

    adidas Lift Your Mind Training Graphic Sweatshirt

    Yes, you can train in this sweater. It’s made with moisture-wicking fabric while keeping you snug during cold sessions outdoors. Bigger sleeves create that little bit extra room to move around in.

    Mr Price Sport Crop Top

    This warm and stylish cover-up with criss-cross detailing on the hem will keep you toasty during runs and errands in the cold.

    Under Armour Outrun The Cold top

    This top won’t allow the elements in, and moisture rolls right off. It’s also kitted out with little peep-holes so you can check your smartwatch without having to roll up your sleeves. Plus, the higher neckline keeps you protected from wind and rain. What’s not to love?

    Nike Therma-FIT One

    Soft fleece is the main material used in this top but it won’t overheat you. It remains sweat-wicking while the stylish cut flatters those tights you love so much.

    Jackets

    Asics visibility jacket

    This jacket, made from lightweight fabric, protects you from the elements, while mesh under the arm area keeps you cool and sweat-free. Front pockets are also clutch for storing the essentials.

    Burnt Aspen Lightweight Jacket

    Lightweight but warm, this stunning pullover does away with wind and rain on your top half. The high collar with a rounded hoodie and a quarter lightweight zip allows you to adjust the warmth. Plus: pockets for the essentials.

    K-Way Cascade Waterproof Rain jacket

    Think of this jacket as the shell protecting you from the elements. Its high neckline keeps out wind and icy droplets, plus the straps on the arms mean you can easily adjust the tightness. And you can draw the hood tighter around your face with adjustable straps.

    Nike Therma-FIT ADV Women’s Downfill Running Gilet

    This body warmer is so soft but durable and can be folded up into the side pockets for when you’re ready to layer down. Since it’s made from down feathers and finished with water-repellent fabric, you’ll stay cosy.

    Shoes

    adidas X_Plrboost Shoes

    Made with a series of recycled materials, this upper features at least 50% recycled content. It’s also responsive, since it uses proprietary BOOST tech to propel you forwards and hit the ground flying.

    Under Armour Hovr Machina 3 Storm

    These shoes are made for running, with UA Storm technology treated upper that repels water without sacrificing breathability. Responsive UA HOVR™ cushioning reduces impact, returns energy & helps propel you forward. All-over reflectivity keeps you visible on low-light sessions.

    Reebok Nano X3

    Finally, a training shoe you can actually run in! An all-new Lift and Run Chassis system compresses when you lift and creates support, but when you push off to run, it gives you that extra oomph to go faster. Keep a lookout for this shoe drop; it launches on the 8th May.

    Puma ForeverRUN NITRO

    Made this stability in mind, pronators will love this shoe. An asymmetrical heel counter holds the foot in place through every stride while a firm density ankle support keeps your foot stabilised. The cushioned sole also responds to pressure, with nitrogen-injected foam designed to provide superior responsiveness.

    New Balance Fresh Foam X 1080 v12

    Made for both training and running, this shoe does it all. Part of the shoe is made with renewable resources to reduce the carbon impact while the sole spreads pressure evenly throughout to give you superior comfort.

    Accessories

    Fit Gymwear Face Cover

    Icy mornings will no longer prosper over you! This breathable face cover allows you to breathe while taking out the sting of cold air whipping your face.

    Cotton On Active Drink bottle

    Stainless steel keeps our coffee hot for post-run drinks while this fun colour matches your outfit nicely. You can’t go wrong with a spill-proof built-in straw, either.

    Cotton On Active Crossbody Bag

    Adjustable straps mean you can wear this as a fanny pack during your runs and then convert it into a chic crossbody bag for running errands. There are pockets galore for storing your phone, cards, keys and anything else.

    Old Khaki Aztec Multi-Scarf

    Cold no more! This multi-scarf can be worn over your arms, legs or neck for added comfort on long, chilly hikes, boot camps and runs.

    Burnt Activewear Daily Crew Socks

    Reviewers say it feels like you’re walking on clouds and they’re just so aesthetically pleasing over a pair of tights and your fave sneakers.

    Mr Price Sport Reflective Arm Warmer

    Wear these under your top for added warmth and layer down when you get warm enough. They’re breathable and light without feeling like there’s a boa constrictor on your arm.

    Women’s Health participates in various affiliate marketing programmes, which means we may get commissions on editorially chosen products purchased through our links to retailer sites. More

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    Ultraboost Light Unveiled As The Latest Innovation From adidas Running

    The South African Marathon season is approaching fast. With the Two Oceans Ultra and Half Marathon scheduled for Saturday, 15 April and Sunday, 16 April 2023 respectively.

    Running is booming in our country, and, along with a huge increase in runners – by more than 10% since the 2020 lockdown, the tech in running shoes is forging ahead.

    One of the heroes of the new evolution of running-specific shoes is the BOOST cushioning from adidas. This month adidas unveiled the latest member of its most iconic running shoe franchise – the Ultraboost Light. Testament to their constant strive to take innovation to the next level, and in response to consumer feedback, the new Ultraboost Light has a ground-breaking new material at its core – Light BOOST.

    Marking a decade since the introduction of BOOST technology, the new and improved Ultraboost Light benefits from 30% lighter BOOST material. Resulting in a performance running shoe designed to offer epic energy, plush cushioning, comfort and responsiveness.

    Taking runners’ experiences to the next level, the all-new Ultraboost Light also includes:  

    A redesigned Linear Energy Point (LEP) found on the sole of the shoe reworked to optimise responsiveness and work in harmony with the new Light BOOST material. 

    PRIMEKNIT+ upper for an adapted fit that provides breathability and comfort.

    Continental™ natural performance rubber instils confidence in traction for all weather conditions.  

    A 10% lower carbon footprint* compared to previous versions.

    The new Ultraboost Light launches in a white colourway, featuring solar red and core black detailing. It is now available from adidas concept stores countrywide, online at adidas.co.za and on the adidas app.

    To celebrate the 10th anniversary of BOOST technology, adidas is also revealing a special edition version of the adidas Ultraboost Light with a dedicated colourway. The 10th-anniversary edition comes in a primarily black colourway, with black and yellow detailing. The same design that was found on the first-ever adidas silhouette with BOOST technology, the Energy Boost.

    Follow the @adidasZA #ULTRABOOST conversation on Instagram for more information. More

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    Is This Really The World’s Most Comfortable Running Shoe?

    Earlier this year, Asics launched the Gel-Nimbus™ 25 – the latest iteration of their Gel-Nimbus running shoe series – with a bold claim: “the most comfortable running shoe, as tested by runners”. That got our attention.

    What Asics Had To Say

    The Gel-Nimbus™ 25 contains PureGEL™ technology, which is designed to absorb shock and, according to Asics, creates the softest landing to date. Other notable features are the addition of Asics’s FF BLAST™ PLUS ECO cushioning foam, which is made using 20% bio-based material from renewable sources, and the stretchy, breathable knit tongue and collar.

    Independently Tested

    It took the Asics design team 18 months to come up with a running shoe that they believed could be called the “most comfortable”. They then handed it over to Dr Chris Bishop, a podiatrist and biomechanist at The Biomechanics Lab in Australia for testing. He designed a test to pit to the Gel-Nimbus 25 against three competitor shoes, as well as the Asics Gel-Nimbus 24. He recruited 100 runners – 52 men; 48 women – to take part in the eight-week study, which involved running on a treadmill for three minutes.

    All the shoes were disguised, so study participants had no idea which shoes they were wearing. After reviewing the study participants’ ratings across various categories, Dr Bishop concluded that, “Comfort is a perception factor which is not a biomechanical variable and it’s not the same for every individual. However, the results of this study were conclusive: the GEL-NIMBUS™ 25 was statistically the most comfortable running shoe tested.”

    WH Tests The Asics Gel-Nimbus™ 25 Running Shoe

    Intrigued by the lab results, Wanita Nicol took the Asics Gel-Nimbus 25 for a test-run under less lab-controlled, more plot-twisty conditions: South Africa’s roads.

    First Impressions

    The first thing I noticed, out of the box, was that the Asics Gel-Nimbus 25s felt a lot lighter than they looked. They’re actually quite broad and chunky looking, but this doesn’t translate into added weight. The next thing that jumped out at me was the tongue – it’s stretchy, perforated and a lot spongier than I’m used to. I find that running shoes sometimes squash the bridge of my foot and this tongue design prevents that from happening. When I read up about the shoe, I saw this was a key design feature – and the perforations I noticed are for ventilation.

    Fit

    The toe box is not as wide as I was expecting from the look of the running shoe, but it also wasn’t cramped – my toes had plenty of space to flex and move. (That said, I have narrow feet.) This snug fit also meant that my foot didn’t slip inside the running shoe, which can cause blisters. There’s a really nice, cushioned collar that prevents chafing and the laces – which are long and also have a good stretch, preventing them from digging into the top of your foot – have extra eyelets that you can use to create even more stability.

    Stability

    Speaking of which, the Asics Gel-Nimbus 25 has a broad base for a running shoe, making it feel really stable. That higher collar that wraps around your ankle also made me feel more secure.

    Grip

    The sole felt nice and grippy on the road and gravelly pavements, although I haven’t tested it in wet conditions.

    Versatility

    When you’re forking out a lot of money on a running shoe you may want to use it for different things. The shoe looks really good – on the run and with jeans. In fact, walking around the mall, I had a random stranger say, “I like your shoes!” and when a sports shoe passes the random-stranger test you must know it’s giving style! But as for other sports, this shoe feels, to me, like a road running shoe, end of story. I would not take it offroad – even just running over small stones, I could feel them right through all that cushioning (of course, I could just be long-forgotten royalty ala The Princess and the Pea). And while the base is broad and stable, I wouldn’t feel comfortable doing a functional workout in them with all that cushioning.

    Speed

    Sometimes you put on a running shoe and you feel like you just want to run as fast as you can. This is not that shoe. However, I felt like I wanted to keep going. I did my usual loop around the neighbourhood and as I neared the end, I still felt fresh and like I could go around again. I found it very easy to maintain a steady pace.

    Comfort

    And now for the big one – the Asics Gel-Nimbus 25 feels like running on marshmallows. The landing is so soft and pillowy, I didn’t feel any of the jarring sensation I sometimes feel as I start getting fatigued and I had none of the pain in my joints that I sometimes feel as a result. The fit is correct to size, so I didn’t ever feel that my toes were knocking against the front of the shoe or that my heels were slipping out of it. There was no painful chafing and no annoying bite of a lace or any other part of the running shoe. The only bit of discomfort I felt was that my feet felt a bit toasty, which I suspect might be welcome in winter when they typically feel like ice blocks on early-morning runs.

    A Running Shoe For People Who Hate Running

    So, the Asics Gel-Nimbus 25 is comfy. But who is it for?

    My take:

    I think it’s a good running shoe for people who hate running. From experience, I hated running until one day I put on a pair of shoes that cushioned my landing and took the pain out of the experience. I feel this shoe could be that gamechanger for other reluctant runners. It’s also good for recreational runners who just want to enjoy going for a jog and maybe run further but aren’t chasing a fast time.

    A more serious runner weighs in:

    While I – nowadays – enjoy running, I don’t run far and I don’t run particularly fast either. So, I asked my friend Amy (@‌amy_hoppy on Insta), a triathlete and half-marathoner, what she thought of the Asics Gel-Nimbus 25. Here’s what she had to say:

    “The Asics Gel-Nimbus 25 shoes are a slightly wider iteration of the 24, meaning greater comfort in the toe box for wider feet like mine. I love the new stretchy tongue and really enjoyed the comfort of the new foam configuration. It’s a shoe you can comfortably wear all day (I’ve tested that) and is ideal for LSDs (Long, Slow, Distance – i.e. your long weekend runs). It’s not a speed shoe (for short, sharp distances), but a good 21km+ and marathon shoe and everyday runner’s training shoe. Their comfort means that two-hour+ long runs won’t feel as taxing on your body and feet.”

    Price

    The Gel-Nimbus™ 25 goes for R3 499 at asics.com. The women’s sizes start at UK3 and go up to UK10, with half sizes available up to size 9.

    Asics Gel-Nimbus 25 | Papaya

    Asics Gel-Nimbus 25 | Indigo Blue

    The Verdict

    The Asics Gel-Nimbus 25 is a very comfortable running shoe. Is it the most comfortable in the world? I’d have to test a lot more shoes to make that call, but of the shoes I have tested, it’s certainly high on the list. Is it worth the price? If a jarring landing is holding you back from pursuing your running dreams, then I would say yes. And if you usually spend this amount of money on a running shoe, this one is worth checking out More

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    Here’s How To Actually Do A Digital Detox, According To Experts

    It’s 7 am. Your phone alarm goes off and, after snoozing for twenty minutes, you grab your phone. Inevitably, you’re littered with notifications: Uber Eats, that workout app you never open, WhatsApps from while you were asleep and some viral tweets are all demanding your attention. Of course, you open one and before you know it, it’s 8:30 am and you’ve got 30 minutes to be at your desk.  

    Like it or not, we’re humans enslaved to our digital devices. Come evening, mindlessly scrolling TikTok on mute while simultaneously watching Netflix is the norm. It feels impossible to just ignore every ping and vibration. It stands to reason, then, that our interests pique when someone says they’re taking on a digital detox. The international practice, used by celebrities, CEOs and regular people alike, allow us some distance from our devices.

    “It’s a period of time where you intentionally disconnect from technology, including phones, laptops, tablets, and social media, yes, that means even a quick WhatsApp,” says Melissa Lain, health coach.  

    But there’s more to it than that. Every time you open your phone, your brain is flooded with dopamine, the body’s innate reward hormone. It’s the same thing that makes you feel so satisfied after eating chocolate or winning an arm wrestle. But being exposed to it 24/7? That’s flooding our brains with the stuff, making us addicted to our tech. And, per a new survey, South Africans are spending upwards of three hours a day on social media alone. A digital detox, also called a dopamine detox, can help. “The idea is to take a break from the constant stream of information and stimulation that comes with being connected all the time,” says Lainn.

    How to tell when it’s time for a digital detox

    There are various signs that it’s time to shut down those reward centres for a while. First, if you’re spending excessive periods of time in a scroll hole, it’s time to put the phone down. Zahraa Surtee, counselling psychologist, notes that sleep disruptions – and checking your phone in the middle of the night – is also a tell-tale sign.

    Also, pay attention to how you’re feeling when you’re not on your devices, notes Melissa. “If you feel like you can never switch off, are constantly checking your phone or emails, even when there aren’t notifications buzzing, and feel overwhelmed by the amount of information you are consuming, it might be time for a digital detox,” she says. Zahraa agrees. Are you feeling anxiety when your phone’s not within reach? You’re likely in a dopamine rut. You might even find a feeling of disconnect with the real world, says Melissa. “If you find yourself spending more time online or watching other people live life rather than creating and experiencing your own, it’s a sign that you need to intentionally disconnect for a while and re-engage with the present moment.”

    Then there’s the physical ramifications: “Spending long periods of time in front of a screen can cause eye strain, tension headaches, neck and back pain, and other physical symptoms,” says Melissa.

    How to detox, digitally

    Zahraa sees digital detoxes as a way to carefully curate what you’re exposed to. “It’s not about giving up screen time completely,” she says. “Rather, it’s firstly about recognising that the media we consume DOES affect our mental health and the way we choose to show up in the world.” Spend some time curating your phone. Go through your apps and disable those notifications that annoy you, or that cause you to scroll endlessly. Do you really need a notification every time someone likes your Reel? “Just as we get to choose the type of foods we ideally want to nourish our bodies with, so we do get to choose the type of content we’d like to nourish our minds with,” says Zahraa. “Digital detoxes are ideally about spending screen time more mindfully and in moderation.”

    To Melissa, the digital detox you embark on can be individualised to you. “It can be as short as a few hours or as long as a week, or even more,” she says. “During this time, you commit to disconnecting from digital devices and focusing on other activities that promote stillness and well-being. Don’t overcomplicate it, an hour or two a day is a perfect way to start, especially when there’s load shedding.”

    Keen to try? Instead of using the time to stare into space, itching to check your phone or Netflix, try scheduling a tech-free activity. Maybe that’s a bubble bath, some colouring in time or just some tea and time with your thoughts. More

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    3 Things To Look For When Buying A Hiking Backpack (Plus, 8 Amazing Ones To Buy Right Now)

    Heading out for a hike is the perfect way to spend time with your friends, family or yourself. But before you search for your nearest mountain, there are things you need to know about hiking backpacks.

    We’ve got the lowdown on what to look for in hiking backpacks, the best ones and the essentials you need to pack.

    3 Things To Look For When Buying A Hiking Backpack

    1. Comfort

    A hiking backpack needs to distribute weight evenly. Seriously, the most important factor to keep in mind is comfort. No matter how many cool features it has, if the bag doesn’t sit comfortably on your back and shoulders, it’s not right for you.

    2. Size

    The backpack’s size is important; work out if you’d prefer a wider and shorter or longer and thinner bag. Obviously a bag that isn’t absurdly huge is first prize. But think about the duration of your hikes and how much you would need to take. Your needs for a short day hike (snacks/water) are different to a full-day hike (lunch, water, additional clothes). Internal storage becomes a big component here; it’s the difference between having enough room or having to take multiple bags.

    3. Padding

    The key to a comfortable backpack is a balanced load. Too little padding will not protect your body from the strains of weight and can cause painful chafing. Similarly, too much padding will cause awkward and uncomfortable pressure against your body, which might lead to soreness… or you standing in a strange way to ease the pressure. A decent backpack should have padding on the back panel, shoulder straps and hip belt strap.

    READ MORE: The 6 Greatest Recovery Tools That Ease Tight Muscles

    Best Hiking Backpacks You Can Buy Right Now

    1. Thule AllTrail

    Best For: Day Hikes

    All your gear is within reach thanks to the easy-access side zippers and front shove-it pocket. The dedicated hydration sleeve frees up space for other essentials like keys and snacks. There’s even an integrated rain cover so the weather will never be a problem.

    MRP 22 litre Hiking Backpack

    Best For: Budget Hikers

    Who says you need to spend a fortune to get a pack with great features? This quick-drying and durable day pack has cushioned straps, a padded back panel and a sternum strap for extra security and comfort. And the webbing and elastic cords allow you to attach a variety of accessories and items. Love!

    Salomon Outlife 20 Unisex Backpack

    Best For: Versatile Hikers On The Go

    Drawing on their trail-running expertise, Salomon has created a robust yet versatile pack that adapts to life on the move and new destinations (hey digital nomads!). Combining a comfy harness with multiple pockets, compartments and carrying solutions, this pack is just waiting for you to make it your own.

    Thule Stir

    Best For: When you need something lightweight

    The simple, clean design offers quick access via the top zippered mesh pocket and über organization for all your items.  If you want it even more streamlined, simply remove the sternum strap and hip belt. Plus, you can stash water bottles and other essentials in the expandable side pockets.

    MRP 30-litre Hiking Backpack

    Best For: Budget Large Day-Pack

    With many of the same features as the 22-litre pack above, you’ll get an extra 8 litres for those long day hikes where you need to pack food, water and perhaps a change of clothes. And at R899, you can’t go wrong.

    READ MORE: Long-Distance Trail Running: Here’s Exactly How To Prep And Push Through

    Salomon Out Night 30+5 Unisex Backpack

    Best For: Overnight Hikes

    Engineered for comfort on the go, this pack is ready for any fast-paced adventure up to 2 days. Clean, modern and with a harness system that lets the pack move with you, it doesn’t get much better than this. Bonus: there are gear attachments that put your poles, ice axes or accessories within easy reach. And a removable lid adds 5L of capacity.

    Thule Sapling

    Best For: Hiking with kids

    This child carrier is safe and comfortable, plus quick and easy to adjust to fit any parent. On-the-go adjustments are made even easier, as you can load your child from the top or the side of the carrier. The deployable sunshade means that your precious cargo is protected from the harsh sun. Plus, store water, nappies, clothes and other bigger items in the zippered compartment and use the extra roomy zippered mesh pockets for emergency items like snacks, toys and keys.

    Hiking Essentials To Take With You

    1. Comfortable shoes and socks

    2. A hat & sunscreen

    3. Water & snacks or a light lunch

    4. Flint / matches and a warm jacket

    5. A hiking backpack and accessories

    Women’s Health participates in various affiliate marketing programmes, which means we may get commissions on editorially chosen products purchased through our links to retailer sites.

    Kelleigh Korevaar

    Kelleigh is the Managing Editor of Women’s Health. When she’s not convincing her colleagues to try the latest TikTok trends, you can find her planning a holiday that never leaves the group chat, binge-reading or eating her way through Cape Town. More

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    The 6 Greatest Recovery Tools That Ease Tight Muscles

    Recovery tools are clutch when it comes to stretching out and massaging tight, sore muscles, whether from injury or a hard workout. We’ve rounded up the top recovery tools that’ll get you from “eina!” to “aaaaah….”

    READ MORE: This Cardio Abs Workout Takes Only 20 Minutes But Works All Your Major Muscles

    Asoka Yoga Acupressure Energy Mat, R435

    Don’t let the spikes scare you; they activate energy points said to relieve pain, fatigue, insomnia and even combat anxiety.

    TriggerPoint GRID 1.0 Foam Roller, R650

    The hollowed-out roller gives as solid a sports massage as you can get alone on your bedroom floor. For best results, go slow as you can and remember to use your body weight as pressure.

    Theragun Mini, R5000

    The gold standard of percussive massagers now comes in a compact, waaaay less expensive model that’ll still pound out muscle tension like a pro.

    READ MORE: The 18 Best Swimwear Pieces That’ll Flatter Every Figure

    Hyperice Vyper Go Vibrating Roller, R3000

    You can roll out those DOMs at home or on the go thanks to this vibrating massage roller that’s designed for portability.

    TrueLight Energy Square 2.4, R6 695

    Red-light therapy is all the rage, but no product is easier to use than this energy square. Pair it with your morning coffee or post-workout stretch to target tension.

    Stryke Cryo Trigger Massage Ball, R420

    Combine the benefits of cryotherapy, heat therapy and massage therapy for pure muscle relief. *sigh*

    READ MORE: Sculpt Your Body With This 15-Minute HIIT Workout More

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    10 must have gadgets to own for the tech addict in all of us

    Lifestyle

    by Dan Robinson
    2 hours ago

    It’s the time of year when we’re all traveling to far-away destinations to visit family or friends so you might start thinking about updating your trusty I-phone or Laptop.
    Whether you’re heading to a winter escape or flying solo to a beach retreat, one thing for sure is we’re all reaching for our tech to help us get there. (You can switch it off and relax when you get there, we won’t tell anyone)
    To save you the legwork, Emirates Woman has created the ultimate tech-inspired gift guide to ensure you’re inspired this season.

    – For more on luxury lifestyle, news, fashion and beauty follow Emirates Woman on Facebook and Instagram
    Images: Supplied, Main image @Bellahadid instagram  More