Beach Body Skipping Video, The Ultimate Guide to Jumping Rope!

I'm very excited to share my latest Wag Doll Protocol fitness video with you; 'Beach Body Skipping - Fast Intense Fat Blaster!' a collaboration with a great team of people I've been working with.

Skipping is an awesome workout on so many levels.

You can use it as a stand alone cardio session, it's a great conditioning exercise which gets the heart rate pumping and the lungs working. Let's get scientific, skipping will improve your VO2 max level, which basically means your fitness level and stamina will improve...and fast!

Add in some high intensity sections such as high knees, jumping on one foot, fast paced skipping and butt kicks, and you will continue to burn calories long after the session has finished and you've hung up your jump rope. This workout blasts fat and is a great weight-loss exercise.

I also use skipping as a quick warm up in preparation for my HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) sessions or weighted workouts. If I'm warming up for a HIIT workout I typically skip for 10 minutes, I reduce this to a 5 minute warm-up for a weighted workout, where I want to reserve more energy for weights training. You can always do a second set of skipping after the weights session if you want to incorporate more cardio.

But it doesn't end there, skipping isn't just a cardio workout, it targets and tones thighs, calves and abs and is an amazing exercise for lean triceps, biceps and shoulders. Wave goodbye to those bingo wings!

It's no coincidence that boxers and martial artists use skipping as an integral part of their workout, it also helps with co-ordination, agility and fast footwork too.

So what do you need to get started?

Well, obviously a skipping rope or jump rope. There are numerous types; leather, rope or plastic, with or without handles, foam covered handles, handles with ball bearings for a smooth rope turn and even weighted handles for those who want to progress to a harder workout. Prices vary from a couple of pounds upto £15. Surely this must be one of the most cost effective pieces of fitness equipment you can buy, and easy to store too.

jump rope on grass

This is the rope I use and you can buy similar here. Try to hang your rope up when you're not using it so it doesn't get tangled and form kinks.

Ropes vary in length between 8 and 10 feet and it's a matter of preference how long you like the rope to be. The measurement I use is to place the rope under my foot, and the tips of the handles reach the top of my shoulders.

Footwear is an important consideration for skipping, a cross-fit style of trainer is best as you need a good cushion under the ball of the foot.

And lastly you need a workout space, skipping really is the ultimate portable workout, as long as you have enough room to turn the can skip. At home, at the gym, or like me, workout in your garden. You can even take your jump rope on holiday.

A sprung wooden floor such as a dance studio is the best surface for skipping, but a matted gym area is great too. You can actually skip on carpet in your home if your ceiling is high enough, but it does create some 'drag' on the rope and may leave a bald patch, so you might want to avoid that! A good tip is to get a piece of wood 3feet x 4feet and lay that down on your lawn, this creates a wonderful skipping area which is cushioned. You can skip on concrete, but limit these sessions to avoid shin splints and joint damage and always wear good trainers.

An interval timer or an app on your phone is a great addition to your skipping kit, allowing you to incorporate changes in pace & different moves.

gymboss interval timer pink

This is my beloved gymboss timer and it's vital for my HIIT workouts too. You can buy it here.

If you're new to skipping then here's a couple of tips to help you get started;
  • Gradually build up your skipping sessions and incorporate rest intervals. 
  • Practice makes perfect, so don't be too down-hearted if you can't co ordinate your feet and hands immediately.
  • Keep your shoulders back and an upright posture, engaging your core. Land lightly on the balls of your feet with a slight bend to the knees.
This sounds like a lot to consider but will become second nature to you as you progess. And add some music, it really does motivate you to get the most from your workouts!

I hope you enjoyed the video and this post, and it inspires you to incorporate skipping into your workout, it's such a great low cost and effective exercise which gets results fast.
I had a lot of fun making the video, and trying to speak after that skipping session is proof what a great workout it is!

Loungerie Trio Part 2: Camisole Top. McCalls M5989

Welcome back lovelies, for the second instalment of my lingerie lounge wear trio, the camisole top.

navy camisole lingerie top

Modelled here by my good self and not Anne my dress form, you can tell it's me because I've got a head and Anne does not. Although from the massive boo-boo I made it's possible I don't have a brain...more on that later!

I'm also wearing the yoga style pyjama pants I described in part 1 of the trio here.

Read on for more pictures and a review of the pattern...

"Falsetesers" A Clean Eating Chocolate Dessert - Eating Clean & Looking Lean

Chocolate balls...indeed!

chocolate dinner dessert

Here's a recipe for a super easy all natural dessert, which looks good enough to serve at a dinner party.

Inspired by Nia Shank's Brownie Balls recipe, I changed a couple of ingredients and got busy in the kitchen. Be sure to check out Nia's website, she has a wealth of fitness knowledge and has some really great clean eating recipes.

I originally called them Chocolate Balls .....but then thought better of it! While struggling to come up with a suitably non-pornographic name a friend of mine Danny 'The Cheesecake Assassin' Mitchell, MMA fighter extraordinaire and lover of all things sweet, suggested Falsetesers... yes! A clean eating alternative to Maltesers....I like it, thanks Danny!

Read on the for recipe:

Loungerie Trio Part 1: The PJ Pants. McCalls M5989 With Modifications

Hey lovelies.

So I finally got round to doing a sewing blog post, yippee!

You all know I've been busy working out and eating clean as part of the The Wag Doll Protocol regime, but I am still sewing, and here's the first part in a trio of items I've made recently, pyjama pants.

pyjama yoga pants

I explained in this post that I normally go straight to the gym after work. I then get home around 7.30pm, shower and start dinner & relax. But what to wear? 8pm is too late to bother getting dressed again, but too early for me to get the pyjamas on while I'm cooking dinner. I wanted to make something casual, something I could wear to cook, have dinner, potter about & relax but could still answer the door. Enter the loungerie trio, more lounge wear than lingerie!

Read on for a description and pattern review...

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