The Power of 10 Challenge - Ines' Insights


Ines Castro works in the Nutracheck Customer Care Team. She has a Masters in Exercise Physiology and Sport & Exercise Science degree. Her passion is running and participating in all things outdoors and active! Here she shares ten top exercise and app tips

1 Walking & jogging

Breaking down my walks/runs into intervals is my favourite way to make time go faster and make a workout more fun! It can be 30 seconds or 1 minute or 5 minutes – but having a short interval to focus on is a great way to distracted yourself and keep you motivated. Plus you can always push for another minute or so! A 10 minute brisk walk can easily become 20 minutes if you break it down into slow and fast-paced intervals.

Tip: You can use our Pedometer Steps feature to add your total steps for the day. We don't start counting calories burned until you exceed 2,500 steps – it sounds mean but we promise it's for your benefit! 😉 Why not challenge yourself to increase your step count by 500 steps today? You can also share your daily step totals with people over on the forums for motivation and accountability!

2 Circuit training

Circuit training involves strength exercises performed continuously or with short breaks. It's a great way to improve your cardiovascular health and increase muscle mass. Keeping your heart rate elevated will burn more calories whilst also building muscle. The greater the proportion of muscle you have in your body compared to fat, the better! It will keep your metabolism 'revved' up and burning calories.

Tip: Did you know you can track body measurements on your Progress page? Tap the menu icon (top left) on the Progress page to find these. When you start exercising as part of your weekly routine, it is possible the scales don't changes as much as you'd expect, this may be due an increase in muscle mass. However as muscle takes up less space than fat, you will still see progress on your body measures!

3 Abs

Having a strong core is not all about having a six pack, nor should it be. Our abdominal and core muscles are constantly working throughout the day. They are vital in keeping us upright, balanced and with good posture during all our daily activities. No workout would be possible without our core muscles. Taking some time to work on our core can help us have a better quality of life long term, by preventing bad posture and back problems.

Tip: Keeping it stomach related, fibre is a great nutrient to keep a healthy and happy gut! Ensure you get 30g of fibre by eating wholegrain foods, fruit and vegetables. A great way to keep track of this is by keeping an eye on your 5-a-day tracker. Plus you can switch the second column in your diary to track fibre (tap the arrow in the header) or check the daily summary chart by tapping the white icon, top right corner. If you don't have 5-a-day set in your diary by default, you can switch trackers by tapping the blue menu icon > 'Diary Preferences' > 'Diary Trackers' and select the 5-a-day tracker".

4 Water tracking

It's easy to overlook hydration, but drinking enough water is essential for many bodily functions such as appetite and temperature regulation, digestion and removal of toxins! Make it a priority especially on sweaty workout days!

Tip: The water tracker in your diary is great for keeping an eye on your water intake throughout the day. Remember, 1 glass = 250ml. Let’s aim for at least 8 glasses! If you struggle with plain water, you can try adding zero-sugar squash or slices of fruit for flavour. If you don't have the water tracker set in your diary, you can switch trackers by tapping the blue menu icon > 'Diary Preferences' > 'Diary Trackers' and select the water tracker.

5 Yoga

Yoga is a good reminder that movement and exercise are available to anyone regardless of your fitness level. It only takes a few minutes, and it can have so many benefits. Besides improving flexibility, yoga is also great for building strength, balance, improving posture, keeping your joints healthy, reducing stress, and becoming more mindful of how your body feels. Often when we go through weight changes, our body can feel different. Taking time to get to know your new body and abilities – regardless of where you’re at – is a great exercise.

Tip: Did you know you can add notes to your diary? You can find the 'Notes' section in the app beneath 'Exercise'. On the website, it's on the right hand side of the screen. Write down how your 10 minutes of movement makes you feel. If you don't have time to write, use an emoji to capture your mood.

6 Your favourite exercises

The best exercise for your weight loss is the one you do consistently! Frequently including exercise in your daily life really is the best way to see sustainable weight loss and maintain your desired weight. Not to mention the incredible health benefits. 😊 It doesn’t have to be a long workout, a simple 10 minute jog or home workout a day goes a long way when done regularly.

Tip: Found an exercise that you love, or want to plan your exercise ahead? You can add activities to your Favourites – just tap the exercise description in your diary, then select 'Add to Favs' at the bottom'. On the website, click the red heart next to the exercise in your diary. You can then easily add this to your diary when you next complete that workout. Add it to your diary in advance to prompt you to get it done!

7 Every day is different

Not all days are the same. Some days we're busy and not very hungry, other days tired and find ourselves snacking and wanting comfort food. This is completely normal and due to a multitude of reasons such as sleep, stress levels, activities that day, hormones, the list goes on. Accepting that this is normal is the best way to stay on track long term.

Tip: Gone over your calories one day? Don't let it stress you out! You can use the Week View (tap the blue menu icon > Diary Week View) to still stay within your weekly calorie target and ensure you are still on track with your goal.

8 Nutrient goals

No size fits all! That goes for both food and exercise. The good news is, improving fitness and building strength doesn’t always have to include heavy weights and very sweaty workouts. Pilates is an excellent example of how controlled movements can improve your overall strength – trust me, you will feel it! I encourage you to breathe through the burn and enjoy feeling your muscles getting strong with every repetition.

Tip: Find your perfect fit in terms of nutrition! We have a variety of Nutrient Goals in the app you can try. Find these by tapping the blue menu icon in your diary > 'Nutrient Goals'. Our pre-planned goals will automatically adjust your macronutrients, for example a higher protein or lower fat intake. You can also use the 'Set My Own' goal to personalise your targets to your specific needs.

9 Pre-workout fuelling

To get the best out of your workout, you need to be adequately fuelled. There's nothing worse than working out feeling hungry or sluggish. My favourite pre-workout snacks are easy to digest and sugary (natural sugars of course!): bananas, dates and apples with peanut butter are my go-tos! Post-workout snacks should still have carbs but also try to include protein. Some of my favourites include whole-grain toast with beans, an omelette with a side of fruit, Greek yogurt with granola or a refreshing fruity protein shake.

Tip: We often overlook the importance of planning our snacks. I encourage you to create snacks using the 'My Meals' section in the app. Create a meal for your pre and post-workout meals so you can easily add them to your diary and plan for success.

10 Dancing (& nights out!)

I love dancing, and it can be a great workout! From structured dance classes such as Zumba, jazzercise and barre, to a night out dancing with friends – it's a great way to shake off any stress, release feel-good hormones like dopamine, and you will quickly get a sweat on!

Tip: Did you know you the app has calorie burn figures for loads of different dancing styles? Type in the search bar > tap 'EXERCISE' tab in the header. If you're on a night out, you can track your alcohol intake in the app too! Add the alcohol trackers to your diary by tapping the blue menu icon > 'Diary Preferences' > 'Diary Trackers' and select the alcohol units and/or alcohol kcal options. You can still go out and stay on track with your goal! Just make sure you dance off what you drink

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