We are very excited to introduce Sarah, who will be teaching Viva Fitness classes including LBT and Park Fitness, both a mixture of low and high impact classes.
She was inspired to become a Fitness Instructor, as she started exercising with Viva Fitness originally and enjoyed the feeling of always feeling better after the workouts and wanted to share her passion for it with others! After some encouragement from Viv, Sarah decided to complete a course to become a Fitness Instructor.
Sarah is especially in interested in cardio and toning workouts. Fitness makes her feel good in herself and helps her to mentally feel better after workouts.
Sarah is all about family life this gives her the flexibility to be there for her two children, Bella and Joey, and to be able to watch them grow up. It’s also encourages them both to be fit and healthy!
Her passion is to encourage people to be fit and healthy and help them feel better about themselves and help drive people to their goals!
Would you like to be fitter and healthier and more confident? Click here to claim your FREE 1 Week Park Fitness Class and give it a go just like Sarah did!
Nothing beats a warming bowl of soup on a cold winter’s day. Try this homemade turkey broth recipe with your leftover turkey.
Here's a list of all the ingredients you're going to need to make turkey broth:
Ouch! I am used to recognising the distress in someone’s face when a muscle cramp strikes during Pilates class.
These involuntary spasms of muscles are very uncomfortable and will stop you in your tracks. The more intense cramps can take a few days to recover from, but they are generally short-lived.
They mostly happen in the arch of the foot, but people also get toe cramps and calf muscle cramps.
WHAT CAUSES THESE INTENSE, INVOLUNTARY SPASMS OF MUSCLES?
There are many possible reasons why you get cramps; it could well be a combination of several. The main things to consider in your quest to reduce your foot cramps are:
Let’s face it, few of us think about our feet very much …. until they cause discomfort! Perhaps an ache from high heels, blisters from new shoes or until they cramp painfully when doing Pilates. This is why I always like to bring focus to our feet in our standing alignment, finding an even weight distribution through the soles of our feet and being aware of how our feet feel.
Understanding how muscles work can help you understand what causes toe, foot and calf muscle cramps. Most muscles work in pairs – an agonist and antagonist. As one muscle (agonist) contracts, the other (antagonist) relaxes so that you get a smooth, controlled movement. If the antagonist muscle does not relax properly, a cramp develops. Conversely, if a muscle contracts suddenly and then doesn’t relax, a cramp can follow.
During your Pilates class, you are asking your feet to go into a range of different positions that you are unlikely to ask of them during your average daily activity. There is a good reason for this – having mobile, strong feet and ankles are essential for good movement patterns further up the chain, in your knees, pelvis and low back. Stiff feet are common in some elderly people, who have lost the ability to roll through the foot while walking and thus develop a solid ‘plodding’ gait: a recipe for instability and falls.
Working the intrinsic muscles of the foot is what you do during a Pilates class from a variety of positions in order to keep the foot working as nature designed it to work. When you point the toes and lift the arches of your feet, you are lengthening the muscles at front of the leg and foot; when you dorsiflex (reach through the heel), you are lengthening the calf muscles, Achilles tendon, and so on.
Immobile feet and ankles are the most common cause of foot cramps while doing Pilates. But if immobility is addressed by the movement that causes you cramps, what should you do?
STEPS TO REDUCE LIKELIHOOD OF FOOT CRAMPS
Massaging the fascia on the sole of the foot before class (and on a regular basis) can release tension. You can do this yourself using a small, sturdy ball, such as a tennis ball (or spiky balls designed for the purpose). Sitting on a chair, you lightly place the weight of your leg and foot down onto the ball. Roll the ball in a linear motion, back and forth, to massage the bottom of the foot.
Self-massage and focused movement of the toes and feet in your own time and own environment will also help. There are lots of foot movements you can do while relaxing by the TV! Simple ankle rotation is invaluable –circling one way then the other about eight times each way ( or try writing the letters of the alphabet in the air with your toes!).
You could also try spreading the toes by interlocking them with your fingers, for example; or scrunching the toes to pick up a light cloth off the floor.
Try lifting and lowering the heels up to 15/20 times, while holding onto a kitchen worktop until a kettle boils or holding on a mantlepiece during an ad break?
Another exercise is simply trying to move the toes separately – so from standing and with weight on the heels, you’d lift the big toe first, then the second, then the third and so it…. it gets easier with practice!
Certainly, making sure you are drinking plenty of water encourages healthy muscle (and joint) function; try drinking more water than you currently do and also take a good long drink of water about one hour before class starts.
Also, make sure you are not short of vital minerals! Bananas have both potassium and magnesium (not the highest magnesium score but they have it). Other sources of magnesium include dried figs, cashew or almond nuts, pumpkin seeds, whole-wheat flour. Dried fruits such as raisins, dates or apricots have potassium. Sources of calcium include dairy products, green vegetables, nuts, flax seeds.
Finally, if and when a cramp does strike during class, stop doing what caused it, rest out and gently massage the muscle, firmly pressing the tendons at the end of the muscles. If it’s really bad, use a warm compress, later on, to help the muscle to relax.
If you're interested in coming along to a Pilates class, please get in touch!
Coriander spiced vegetable soup
Cauliflower & Coriander SouP
I'd love to hear whether you enjoyed these recipes! Leave a comment below.
Do your shoulders, neck or back ever hurt after a day in the office? It can easily happen when we sit down for a long period of time – and many of us spend more than seven hours a day at our desk.
These aches and pains can make us more uncomfortable and less productive. *People in the UK took a massive 30 million days off work last year because of muscle and bone problems.
One solution to try is to make sure you’re stretching often at work. A few stretches a day can make a big difference to your health in the long run.
Why not try some of these exercises right now!
1.Give your knee a hug
While sitting at your desk, hold on to your shin and pull your knee towards your chest and hold it as close to your chest as you can. Hold for 10 seconds and repeat.
2.Touch your twinkle toes
While sitting at your desk, straighten your legs and reach out to touch your toes.
Whilst keeping your back upright, lift your arm over your head and reach towards the opposite side.
Raise both your shoulders towards your ears. Hold for 10 seconds and release.
5.Reach for the Stars
Whilst at your desk and humming the S Club 7 classic song, interlock your hands and reach for the stars with palms facing the ceiling. Hold for 10 seconds.
6.Give yourself a pat on the back
Take your left arm and grab your right shoulder. With your right hand, grab your elbow and gently pull it towards your right shoulder. Repeat with opposite arm.
Place one hand on the opposite side of your head. Very gently, pull your head towards your shoulder. Your shoulder does not have to touch your ear. Small movements are good enough.
We’ve also found more stretch exercises you can try from BUPA.
Fancy trying Pilates to improve your core strength and flexibility?
If you are new to Pilates our Beginner’s Course will take you through the basics, alignment, breathing and centring. Ready to move on to the mixed ability classes to continue your practice. We keep our classes small, so that you have the highest quality teaching and to allow for individual attention. Email me for more information and to come and try and free taster class!
*Source - BUPA
This stir-fry recipe with cauliflower rice makes the perfect quick and easy midweek meal. Give it a try!
Prep time is 10 minutes
Cooking time is 30 minutes
Cauliflower rice recipe
Fry the mixture until slightly golden for about 8-10 mins. Serve with stir-fry and enjoy!
Only a handful of ingredients produce this delicious soup - a tasty winner! Treat yourself to this hearty winter warmer - low cost & less hassle.
I'm Viviane, owner at Viva Fitness. I also answer to Vivi or Viv.
I have been teaching since April 2012 and my classes are Rebound at 6.30pm and HiiT at 7.30pm on Mondays, Pilates from 10am-11am on Tuesdays, Pilates at 9.30am on Wednesdays and on Thursdays at 5.50pm and 6.55pm. I also teach Pilates on Fridays from 11am-12pm and Rebound on Saturdays at 8.30am and Pilates at 9.30am.
I used to love all things high impact and fast moving until I got injured, now I love mindful movement being aware of how our bodies move, connecting breath to movement and strengthening our bodies from the inside out. I have found this to be very beneficial to ease anxiety, depression and general aches and pains. I’m a great believer in keeping my mind healthy through exercise.
Pilates and Yoga make me feel present and in the moment, I feel a sense of freedom and peace during my practice, I love the way it challenges me both physically and mentally, it’s definitely my therapy and time out from everything that’s going on in the world!
I love cake and an afternoon snooze 😊 and I’m bilingual (Swiss/German).
I am passionate about helping others overcome personal struggles with mental health as well as physical health, helping people get out of pain, move more freely and feel good about themselves.
Follow me on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/Viva_fitness_/
My favourite quotes are “Very little is needed to make a happy life.” and “You have to find what sparks a light in you so that your own way can illuminate the world.” - Oprah Winfrey
We are very excited to introduce Val. Val teaches Body Blast on Wednesdays at Spelthorne Gymnasium from 7-8pm.
Val is a qualified Personal Trainer and has been teaching since 2016. Val also teaches; Grit, Body Attack, Body Balance, Fight Club (boxing to drum n base music), Spin and Free style Aerobics.
You can expect from Val’s classes a mix up of exercises depending on the participants of the class, aiming to finish with a good stretch!
Claire has been teaching Pilates classes at Viva Fitness for one year. Claire loves teaching just as much as taking part and says Pilates and Yoga make her feel calm and relaxed. With a special interest in taking care of her body by strengthening and lengthening, you can expect to try a mix up of both Pilates and Yoga in her classes on occasion, because they go well together and letting go feels right.
Claire’s other passions include painting and restoring furniture – she loves to make something out of nothing or give a piece of furniture a new lease of life.
You will notice Claire’s bright UV pink hair! Claire has a great sense of fun and admits she can be a bit scatty but she has a heart of gold and will help anyone out if she can. She loves a chat and interacting with the students because they are all so lovely!
Claire gets satisfaction out of knowing she’s helped someone, even if it takes time, when the end result is just great!
As Joseph Pilates says “In 10 sessions you will feel the difference. In 20 sessions you will see the difference. And in 30, you will be on your way to having a whole new body.”
Kirsty (aka Killer Kirsty by some of our members) teaches our Wednesday evening classes at St. John Fisher at 7 pm and 9 pm.
Kirsty has been teaching Pilates, Yoga and Les Mills for approximately 3 years and has a special interest is making the class accessible and inclusive for everyone! It’s the worst feeling thinking that everyone is better or stronger than you are, so there’s always options and wherever you are, know that you’re doing your best.
Movement of any kind makes Kirsty feel happy and alive! Expect to have fun in Kirsty’s class because of her fabulous sense of humour!
Caroline teaches Viva Fitness Yoga classes at St Nicholas Parish Centre on Thursday’s at 8pm and at Old School Building on Friday’s at 9.30am.
Caroline has been teaching for 4 years and has a passion for sharing the love of Yoga and its transformative powers and for connecting breath with movement. She believes the core of our being is life giving breath, and the core of the body is integral in moving with ease. Caroline has a special interest in Yoga philosophy, breathing practice and creative flow. Yoga should be fun and challenging and you can expect Caroline to always include work on the core and interesting poses and flows to keep students progressing.
Ultimately in her classes Caroline’s passion is to help you to connect to your body, prepare to build up to a peak pose, find success and a lifelong safe practice to keep you smiling ☺️
Caroline is blessed with three children and believes Yoga makes her feel calm, centred, connected and at peace.
Get to Know Your Teacher Alert 🧘
Claire teaches HiiT class on Friday’s at 9am at Laleham Village Hall. Fitness and exercise make Claire feel amazing - mentally and physically. Claire has a passion for fitness and getting results with clients which make them happy. Claire is a mother of two and likes to compete in marathons and enjoys cycling. 🏃♀️ 🚴♀️
Claire’s favourite inspirational quote is “For me exercise is more than just physical, it’s therapeutic.” – Michelle Obama
Research shows that 30 day challenges work! Here we explain why this is and give you some simple movement challenges to get you started!
Firstly, why 30 days? Well, a month is the ideal amount of time to either kick an old habit or start a new one, depending on what you want to achieve. If you’ve spent years wanting to stop eating chocolate, or start exercising, or write a book this is the month when you could finally do it.
Watch this TED talk and be inspired into a new way of thinking to achieve your goals.
We’ve come up with seven simple challenges to kick start your 30 day routine. It’s entirely up to you; only take up one of these challenges each day or perhaps two or more. I’d love to hear how you get on and whether you need any morale support or encouragement to keep you going past 7 days and up to 30. It’ll be great to hear whether you’re feeling more relaxed, energetic, calmer and happier after you’ve completed a 30 day challenge.
These small exercises may sound like a lot to remember, but you can just start one at a time until each one becomes a habit. Remind yourself that “If I take the lift up to the third floor or lazily brush my teeth without squatting, then I am missing a huge opportunity for growth.”
Soon enough these exercises will just happen habitually.