Week 4: #PositivelyImperfect Fitness Plan

We are more than half way through our #PositivelyImperfect programme. We hope you're feeling the benefits of taking a more positive approach to fitness for the summer. It's definitely a lot more fun'than you thought it would be, right?

This week we're looking at foods to add to your diet - yep, you'll be eating more, but of the good stuff - as well as some exercises to add to your program to help you gain more strength and tone.


When you sit down to a meal, look at your plate and ask yourself, is this colourful enough? If not,?add a pop of colour. Colourful foods are jam packed with vitamins and minerals needed to help your?body function correctly. Try not to think about added calories, think about feeding your body with'real food that support your cells and organs. Eating foods that are in season is a fantastic way to get?the best out of ingredients - they are fresher, tastier and healthier.

Here are some ideas for summer foods to add to your diet:


Breakfast: Add a handful of mixed berries to your porridge, muesli, and granola or have them as a side to your (healthy) pancakes. They are delicious and contain lots of phytochemicals which help protect cells from damage. The fiber and water in berries gives you a sense of fullness which can help when managing your weight.

Snack: Peppers, celery and cucumbers are in season now. Snacking on these veggies?with humus or cottage cheese is a great way to beat sugar cravings.

Lunch/Dinner: Salad is in season all summer so get creative! Try grilling vegetables like aubergine, tomatoes, courgettes, asparagus and adding them to a plate of iceberg lettuce with some toasted pine nuts and seeds - delicious!


We are adding some exercises into your program this week giving you an extra challenge which will help strengthen and sculpt your body.

Tricep Dips

A great exercise for the bingo wings, this exercise can be done anywhere. All you need is a park bench, chair or step.

  1. Put?your hands on the bench, beside your hips.
  2. Keeping your bum close to the bench, bend the elbows and slowly lower down.
  3. Using the strength in your arms, push yourself back up.
  4. Keep the bum close to the bench on the way up and down.
  5. Perform 3 sets of 12 to begin and increase as you become stronger.



This is a great exercise for strengthening the abs, back, legs, arms and bum.

  1. Start with your hands on the floor under your shoulders.
  2. Straighten and strengthen the legs, kick back into the heels.
  3. Engage your stomach muscles, open the chest and gaze forward keeping your neck in line with your spine.
  4. Use a medicine ball to increase the intensity.
  5. Perform 3 sets of 12 to begin and increase as you become stronger.


Bridge / Pelvic Tilt


This exercise works the glute muscles (that's your bum), the legs and the core.

  1. Lie on your back with your knees bent.
  2. Keep your legs hip distance apart and your knees over your ankles.
  3. Gently lift the hips up, one vertabra at a time while keeping the abs strong and engaged to protect the lower back.
  4. If you can, clasp your hands together with your baby finger touching the floor.
  5. Hold for 5 deep breaths and release. Repeat 3 times.

Bridge pose


It's time to add a daily meditation into your routine - don't panic, its just 5 minutes! Schedule the time in every day, it's the only way. First thing in the morning is a great time, not only will this simple meditation set you up with a clear, focused, grateful heart and mind, but you are less likely to bail on the idea if it's done and dusted first thing.

  1. Start by sitting comfortably in a calm, clean space.
  2. Keep your spine long, shoulders relaxed, hands on your thighs, palms facing upwards.
  3. Gently close your eyes.
  4. Focus on following your breath. Inhale deeply beginning in the lower tummy and working up through the diaphragm, chest, throat and nose. Then exhale fully and gently out through the nose, following the breath.
  5. When your mind wanders - which it will - don't worry, just bring your attention back to the breath.

Website?PositiveFitnessProject?Twitter @LizCostigan



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