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Complementary Fitness 4 December newsletter

Complementary Fitness Logo

Welcome to this week’s newsletter & updates:

I hope that you can make it to ALL of our classes this week and this is a reminder that if you’re coming to our Tuesday & Thursday evening classes, to remember to bring a battery operated candle or tea light/candle and holder and a lighter for our candlelight classes.

A lovely relaxing stretch for legs and to help us de-stress and relax is to ‘legs up the wall’ stretch.  It is what it says ie you can start by sitting facing side-on to a wall and then bend your knees and with twist yourself round so that you scoot yourself, or your glutes towards where the floor and wall meet.  Lengthen your legs up the wall as you lay your upper body on the floor and ideally on a yoga mat or carpet.  Have your arms by your sides, close your eyes and focus on relaxed breathing.

It’s so good to help us relax by bringing us from sympathetic nervous system (fight or flight response) to parasympathetic nervous system (rest and digest).

So ‘legs up the wall’ can help to:

  • Lower anxiety and stress
  • Ease headaches
  • Regulate blood flow
  • Restore swollen, sore legs & relieve leg & feet cramps
  • Improve digestion and gut health
  • Helps balance blood pressure
  • Can alleviate low back tension

Another wee short 4 or 5 min warm up video that I thought I’d share coz we’ve been talking about flexibility and stretches recently:


Thanks to RR (Wed class) who gave me a part of an article she saw in The Times which, according to research, was all about keeping our thigh muscles strong with regular squats and lunges to prevent us needing a knee replacement in old age.

The study found that people who performed exercises that strengthened their quads (at the front of the thighs) were less likely to need knee replacement surgery.  Having strong quads was found to be the most important factor in reducing the risk of needing the op and more important than having strong hamstrings (muscles at the back of the legs).

The article said that the 2 muscles groups (quads/hamstrings) act as counter forces and the balance between them enables a wide range of activities while protecting the knee joint but that having strong quads is significantly associated with lowering the odds of knee replacement surgery in 2-4 years if associated with osteoarthritis.

So if you’re wondering why we do so many squats and lunges in all of our classes, it’s to build strength in these muscle groups.  When at home, you can also do a few lunges & squats as well as step-ups – great if you have stairs in your house ie step up with right then left foot then back down again with right & left foot.  Do a few of these then change the lead leg up & down.  If you live in a flat or bungalow and don’t have stairs, try using a step or bench.

Stay strong.

I read a post recently reminding us that one of the best nutrients to decrease stress, regulate neurotransmitters, improve sleep and reduce anxiety is magnesium.

I regularly take a couple of magnesium bisglycinate tablets just before bed and find that they give me a much better sleep.  I also love to add a great big handful of magnesium flakes / Epsom salts into a bath to help me relax.

I also read that a ‘trick’ is to pair magnesium-rich foods with B6-rich foods to greatly boost absorption and enhance stress relief.


Some great food sources of magnesium are:

  • Dark chocolate (yessss)
  • Spinach
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Avocado
  • Swiss chard
  • Almonds
  • Black beans
  • Cashew nuts
  • Quinoa
  • Bananas
  • Figs

And great food sources of vitamin B6 are:

  • Chickpeas
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Bananas
  • Potatoes
  • Spinach
  • Avocado
  • Pistachios
  • As well as salmon, chicken beef liver and pork.


How about pairing black beans and avocado in a meal?  Even at breakfast, honest, I’m serious.  Or spinach and potatoes or dark chocolate and pistachios.

Just to be sure, I wouldn’t’ have the dark choc & nuts at breakfast, just in case you’re wondering but would save that till later, probably after lunch.

All sounds good and yummy to me.

What would be your combinations?

Thanks so much for all of your the fantastic comments.

It’s good to try other sports/venues/exercise classes and see what you like or don’t like.  As you know, we love going to Club La Santa, Lanzarote and do a few classes every day when there.  Ok, it’s a bit far to go but even if you try other classes and venues nearby, please continue to come and take part in OUR classes too – thank you.

And …. as you know, and I always remind you:

Do what’s right for you.

Adapt ie ease back, you don’t have to go to 100% but sometimes, depending on how you’re feeling, work at 50, 60, 70%.

You can lower the intensity for a part of the class or the whole class.

You don’t have to always go for ‘the harder options’ – you know the ones I mean!

If you ever feel a class is too intense for you, remember that each class is different – one week might be really tough (“aren’t they all I hear you say”?).

You might not be ‘feeling it’, you might be tired or had a long day so maybe ease back.

However, on some days, you might have lots of energy, feel motivated, energised and want to ‘give it your all’.

All fair enough – it’s YOUR workout in a group class.

You don’t have to keep up with anyone else.

Each person is just focussing on their own workout, exercise, stretch and isn’t looking to see what anyone else is doing or not doing.


We’ll certainly be doing a lot more relaxing, stretching and focussing on our breathing in our candlelight classes this week and next – yessss.

Looking forward to seeing you and working out with you in our classes this week as always.


Easiest and best way that you can pay for classes:

  • With cash ie £6 per class (always best and I have change)
  • Directly into my bank account (if you don’t have my details, email me and I can give you my sort code & business account number).
  • Alternatively, using contactless directly to my iphone in class

Remember to let me know if you have any comments, news and keep me updated with anything that’s happening with you ie health-related stuff, goals, achievements etc.

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