Wednesday 26 October 2016

Siobhan Byrne: Sidestep the pitfalls that trip you up

Are you sabotaging your shape? Our fitness expert explains common diet and training mistakes

Siobhan Byrne

Published 16/08/2016 | 02:30

Siobhan Byrne pinpoints ways you may be sabotaging the great shape you aim to achieve
Siobhan Byrne pinpoints ways you may be sabotaging the great shape you aim to achieve
Prisoner squat 1
Prisoner squat 2
Jacknife 1
Jacknife 2
Plank jacks 1
Plank jacks 2
Spiderman push up 1
Spiderman push up 2
Spiderman push up 3

Over the coming weeks, I am going to explore some of the ways in which you may actually be sabotaging the great shape you aim to achieve. Common diet and training mistakes could be to blame.

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We all know that training is hard work and requires dedication. But all of those trips to the gym may not yield the results you want if your diet is wrong and you aren't doing the right exercises for the shape you desire.

Cheat meals

First on the menu of pitfalls are cheat meals. These are supposed to be just that - one, higher-calorie meal a week that you can enjoy without feeling guilty. They are fine, until:

• they become a continuous splurge of over-eating or indulging in the wrong foods, for example, over the course of a weekend, and

• they are not preceded and immediately followed by a week of adhering to a nutritious, balanced and well-controlled eating plan.

If you are drinking alcohol or snacking on chocolate and other calorific treats during the week, you should not indulge in a cheat meal.

And if you think hitting the treadmill or going for a run will answer your body shape prayers, think again. The fact is, cardio alone will not shape your body. What it will do is help to burn calories and increase your cardiovascular ability but, unless your diet is correct, you may never see the gains.

Following the trends

Social media is awash with so-called fitness gurus - but be aware that following those who don't have appropriate experience, and who aren't aiming for the same body shape goal as you, could be your downfall. After all, your body shape and goals are unique to you.

You can still, of course, look for helpful recipes and tips to help you achieve the results you want, but it's best to seek professional advice. Remember, you only want to be the best version of you that you can be.

Body shape #Part one

Prisoner  squat

1/ Start by standing with your feet slightly wider than shoulder-width apart and lock your fingers behind your head.

2/ Bend at the hips and knees to lower your body until your thighs are parallel to the floor, then simply push back up to the starting position and repeat.

Jack knife

1/ Start by lying on your back with your legs straight and hands to the sides of your head.

2/ Then simply lift your head and shoulders off the floor while also bringing your knees in to your chest, allowing the knees to meet the elbows. Lower back down to start position and repeat.

1/ Start on your toes and hands with your arms straight, back flat and your feet together.

2/ Then jump your feet out to the sides without moving hand position. Immediately jump back to the middle and repeat. Keep your back flat throughout.

Spiderman push-up

1/ Start in the top position of a push-up with your arms straight.

2/ Then bend your elbows and lower your body towards the floor, while at the same time bending one knee and bringing it to your elbow with your foot off the floor.

3/ Push back up to the top position and repeat with opposite leg.

For a more advanced workout, try the crawling version of this exercise.

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