INFRARED SAUNA AT KARDIA SKIN + BODY: THE ULTIMATE DE-STRESS

It’s about that time of year. Everyone is sniffling and spluttering, worn out and tired. We’ve hit the halfway mark on 2017 and if you’re anything like me, feeling quite exhausted.

Unfortunately, we can’t all crawl into a ball and hibernate for weeks on end, the show must go on! But there are ways you can relax the body and mind which will help when those stressful times creep up and you need a bit of inner zen to help you push through.

I’ve tried everything from yoga to massages, facials, mindfulness sessions and everything in-between. And while these sorts of relaxation are great, I’ve often found the effects on my body to be quite short lived. So when I heard about Infrared Sauna, I knew this was one to try.

Infrared Sauna Therapy is an incredibly effective treatment with a wide range of health benefits. Infrared works by heating the body’s core temperature rather than just heating the air in the sauna. The infrared penetrates tissue, joints and muscles to relieve anything from minor aches and pains to chronic pain conditions. The benefits don’t end there – detoxification, weight loss, relaxation, improvement in skin conditions and cardiovascular health are all scientifically proven benefits of Infrared Sauna Therapy. 

I arrive at Kardia Skin and Body for my sauna session and meet the lovely Natasha. Tucked away in her gorgeous home, Kardia Skin and Body offers high-end beauty and body treatments to a dedicated clientele. After a quick chat about my current health concerns and goals, I am led to a blissfully quiet room for my sauna.

At first I am a little nervous about spending 45 minutes in a wooden box at 58 degrees but I can assure you that it is the most amazing experience. I take in a couple of magazines and soak up the serenity, taking some time for a little meditation and feeling the calm just wash over me.

Within about 10 minutes of my first session, I am sweating it up big time, apparently this means the sauna is working its magic on detoxifying my body. After the session is complete I reluctantly head back out into reality and sip on filtered water in the cool waiting room.

I’ve been having weekly sauna sessions and the benefits are nothing like I’ve ever experienced before. During the session I feel my body and mind relax completely, a feeling which continues for a good couple of days afterwards – not to mention sleeping like a baby on those nights too! The infrared sauna has also had an amazing effect on some recurring lower back pain I’ve been experiencing, as the heat helps to relax my muscles and joints. My skin, also suffering terribly from stress (aka: mega breakout!), reaped the benefits of regular time in the sauna as the heat helped to get rid of all the toxins and nasty buildup of bacteria.

It was also so nice (almost indulgent) to have 45 minutes completely to myself. No messages, emails or S/O’s to interrupt me meant I could completely focus my mind on tuning out of all the noise.

Infrared Sauna sessions at Kardia Skin and Body will set you back $40 per session or $175 for a block of 5 sessions. And it’s worth every penny, trust me!

Kardia Skin and Body
47 Tyler Street
Joondanna WA
0407 385 452

Web kardiaskinandbody.com
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A NEW LOOK FOR PURE MOVES + PILATES TO BURN SOME SERIOUS CALORIES

They say change is as good as a holiday and personally, I like nothing like a little spruce up to keep things fresh. So you can imagine my delight when I waltzed into my Pilates haven, Pure Moves recently. The Cottesloe studio that once sported that iconic purple wall, has debuted a sleek new look with a pared back modern, minimalist style, giving the space an exclusive, luxe studio feel. The renovations included a brand new lounge area for clients to relax in pre or post class, a redesigned reception area, plenty of lush greenery and stunning finishes including modern hanging pendant lights and, my personal favourite, matte black sink and tap ware in the kitchen. The redesign has given the studio more of a unisex feel and has really given the space an amazing lift.

Inspired by the beautiful new fit-out at Pure Moves, and feeling very uninspired by the volume of hot cross buns and chocolate consumed last weekend, I checked into Pure Moves for a post-Easter blitz. I’ve rounded up some of the best classes to schedule in if you’re looking to work up a serious sweat.

Athletic Reformer
Some smart cookie took my favourite Pilates workout and (somehow) made it better. Athletic Reformer is everything you love about the spring loaded resistance workout, but at a higher intensity to really get the heart rate going! I love Reformer because it strengthens and lengthens muscles without adding bulk, and Athletic Reformer takes it to a whole new level with a series of exercises that burn more calories and sculpt the body faster. I jumped into a 6am class and it was the perfect way to wake my body up and get ready for the day. Highly recommend!


TRX
A sure fire way to get your muscles (and metabolism) going is with a TRX class. This workout focuses on suspension training and the movements of the body while, well…suspended. Designed to work core muscles and increase strength, TRX at Pure Moves is a 45 minute class that is over before you know it and the results are almost instantaneous. I particularly felt the burn in my legs, until the next day when my core decided to kick in and my abs ignited. There is nothing like that all over body soreness after an amazing workout.

Boxilates
This game changer combines good old fashioned boxing with a toning Pilates mat class. It’s interval style training at its best which improves cardio fitness, strength and works the core, arms and back. This is a great class that is suitable for all fitness levels. Pure Moves offer three Boxilates classes per week, 8.30am Wednesday, 6.15pm Thursday and 6am Friday.

THE BEAUTY CHEF REVIEW: RADIANT SKIN STARTS FROM WITHIN

You’ve heard it all before, the best way to achieve beautiful skin is to eat a diet high in nutrients and full of fruit and vegetables. A healthy inside means you’ll glow on the outside right? Sure, but what if you could add just that little bit extra to your daily intake of goodness and really make your skin radiant? Introducing, The Beauty Chef, an Australian beauty supplement brand founded by Carla Oates that has been an absolute skinchanger for me. I road tested a few of their products and here’s what I found… 

After a few indulgent months of Christmas and Summer holidays, I started my New Years health kick (along with everyone else). But in addition to getting back to the gym and eating properly again, I wanted to add a little something more to really cleanse and reset my system. I felt sluggish, bloated and my skin wasn’t looking great. After a little research, I came across The Beauty Chef, a range of health and beauty products that aim to support beautiful skin, a healthy gut and a balanced body.

Good gut health can be a game changer to achieving healthy, radiant skin, in fact impaired gut flora is the root of many skin concerns including inflammation, acne, dermatitis and psoriasis just to name a few. Even if you are experiencing congestion or dull, lifeless skin, a good probiotic in your regime will work wonders.

I purchased The Ultimate Starter which includes: GLOW Inner Beauty Powder, COLLAGEN Inner Beauty Boost and BODY Inner Beauty Powder and is a great option for those new to The Beauty Chef.

GLOW INNER BEAUTY BODY POWDER 
This superfood beauty blend is designed to improve gut health and enhance skin radiance and texture. This daily beauty supplement is formulated with antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, essential fatty and amino acids, prebiotics and probiotics which, when taken regularly, help achieve a smooth and radiant complexion.

I take this supplement every evening, dissolved in a glass of water. The powder formula dissolves easily but I do find some sediment sinks to the bottom of the glass so drink quickly. It tastes like berry cordial and is also a great addition to a smoothie. After only having used this product for a couple of weeks I noticed a definite improvement in skin clarity, hydration and luminosity. I also felt a significant improvement in my overall gut health and digestion.

COLLAGEN INNER BEAUTY BOOST
Plump, firm skin without the needles? Yes please! Collagen Inner Beauty Boost is a bio-fermented probiotic elixir that helps fight fine lines, free radical damage and boosts the skins natural collagen production. A blend of Certified Organic maqui berry, acai, papaya, blueberry, goji berry and pomegranate powders (no wonder it tastes amazing!) this gem is rich in antioxidants and helps to balance the digestive tract and boost vitality.

I have fallen in love with this product and find it works wonders on my skin. I take it daily, mixed with the Glow Inner Beauty Powder. It wasn’t long until I started noticing a visibly plumper complexion and just a general boost in skin radiance. When taken with the Inner Beauty Powder, I felt that both products worked nicely together to improve my gut health and are a really delicious way to consume probiotics too.

BODY INNER BEAUTY BODY POWDER VANILLA (WITH MATCHA) 
There is so much to love about this plant based protein powder. The all natural, vegan, Certified Organic formula is great as a snack or as a meal replacement and boosts your daily protein and nutrient intake. Jam packed with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, BODY is the ultimate nutrition supplement.

I add a scoop of BODY to my green smoothies for breakfast or blitz with some almond milk and frozen raspberries for a pre-workout or afternoon snack and find it keeps me going for hours. It curbs sugar cravings and helps to boost metabolism thanks to the added benefits of pure Matcha.

THE BENEFITS OF REGULAR REMEDIAL MASSAGE

I’m sure most people don’t need much persuading to book in for a massage. An hour of uninterrupted relaxation while someone works away on your tight spots is certainly my idea of bliss. But new research shows that the therapeutic benefits of regular massage extend beyond simply feeling good; improved circulation, boosted immunity, stress reduction and injury prevention just to name a few. Not convinced? Read on for a full rundown on the top 5 health benefits, you might be pleasantly surprised.

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By the end of most weeks I’m feeling pretty worn out. Hours of sitting at a desk all day plus some pretty intense gym work can take its toll, sore muscles, a stiff neck and headaches that won’t budge are sometimes all too familiar. We put our bodies through a lot and quite often don’t take the time to repair or correct problems caused by modern living.

A little while ago I was referred to Resolve Remedial Massage. Located in Claremont, Resolve is owned and run by Louise Tomlinson whose healing hands have treated Olympians, Paralympians and elite athletes. Louise’s treatment is highly effective and personalized to the needs of each and every client and I can honestly say she is the best massage therapist I have come across in years. I try to regularly schedule massages with Louise as I consider them a necessity for my health and paramount to managing and easing pain, treating and preventing injury and reducing stress.

I chatted with Louise to get a run down on the top 5 health benefits to having regular remedial massage…

The most common complaint I see as a remedial therapist is upper body and shoulder tightness. This is largely due to the increased stressors in today’s world. The majority of us tend to carry and store tension in our upper shoulders, which often leads to prolonged poor posture, tightness and tension. Once our muscles become dehydrated and compromised, they start affecting neighbouring structures. For example, the neck muscles then becomes tight, which can cause headaches, joint stiffness and restricted range of motion.

From my experience, the top 5 health benefits of regular remedial massage are: 
1. Pain relief
2. Aid in the rehabilitation of injuries
3. Increased circulation and decreased tension
4. Stress / anxiety relief
5. An overall feeling of wellbeing (which includes increased range of motion and function)

Resolve Remedial Massage is located at 10/42-44 Gugeri Street Claremont. Check out their Facebook page for more information and call 0413 699 136 to book. Your body will love you for it.

Luxury wellness hub in the historic heart of Perth

Inner city yoga studios are opening just about everywhere these days, offering city slickers the chance to escape from the hustle and bustle of the 9-5 with some conveniently located zen. New on the list for Perth is COMO Shambhala Urban Escape… 

COMO Shambhala Urban Escape is centrally located in historic heart of Perth at the newly restored State Buildings which, gave the eastern end of the Perth CBD a new lease on life on opening late last year. Part of the State Buildings restoration saw COMO Hotels open the (luxurious) doors to their first Australian property, COMO The Treasury, which is now home to this stunning wellness sanctuary.

COMO Shambhala Urban Escape comprises two blissful locations, the spa, which is tucked away in the hotel, and the wellness studio, fronting St Georges Terrace at the southern end of the State Buildings. Both are open to the public offering sublime spa and beauty treatments (trust me…) and holistic yoga, pilates, fitness and mindfulness.

Christina Ong, owner of COMO Hotels and Resorts, opened the first COMO Shambhala retreat at Parrot Cay in the Turks and Caicos. There are now over seven COMO Shambhala locations worldwide including the residential retreat in Bali and Urban Escape in Singapore.

COMO Shambhala follows a healthy living philosophy that takes its inspiration from mythological roots: in ancient Buddhist texts, ‘Shambhala’ refers to a sacred place of bliss.

COMO Shambhala proposes that such tranquillity need not to be found in any specific location but with the right tools, it can be discovered within oneself, by exploring body, mind and spirit.

– COMO Shambhala

Stepping off St Georges Terrace and into the wellness center is like entering into another world, the hum of traffic and city life melts into the background as a wave of calm just washes over you. The contemporary luxe studio is simply stunning, with travertine floors throughout reception, beautiful white floor length curtains in the yoga room and stylishly appointed bathrooms (complete with COMO Shambhala amenities), you’ll never want to leave.

Extend your post-Vinyasa bliss with a visit to Post restaurant upstairs and dine on the COMO Shambhala cuisine. Hot tip: the “real toast” is to die for!

COMO Shambhala Urban Escape
1 Cathedral Ave Perth | Open daily | +61 8 6168 7878
Website | FacebookInstagram
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Photos courtesy of COMO Shambhala Urban Escape

Back on Track: staying healthy when injured

If you’re anything like me, you started off 2015 well intentioned. Eat healthier, exercise more, go to bed earlier…the list goes on. I came home from my summer holidays ready to start the new year with a bang and make it my healthiest and fittest one yet until a back injury from last year reared its ugly and painful head, rendering me incapacitated for a good two months.

Unable to get into the boxing classes and sessions on the bike I had promised myself, I began to get really frustrated and anxious that I wouldn’t be achieving the goals I had set. But after many days spent flat on my back and hundreds of dollars spent at the physio, I realised that although I couldn’t whip myself into shape at the gym just yet, I could take extra care with what I was putting into my body, because we all know this is half the battle!

After a bit of research, I came across an excellent range of superfood supplements that have made enhancing the nutrition in my diet while I was injured a whole lot easier. Introducing Bioglan Boosters a potent blend of superfoods packed with antioxidants, proteins, omega-3, fibre, vitamins and minerals. These Boosters can be added to any meal throughout the day to enhance nutritional value and taste great too! The range includes Breakfast Booster, Meal Booster and Salad Booster. Click here to read about how you can incorporate them into your daily superfood intake!

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As well as taking extra care of my diet, I have now eased back into Reformer Pilates for strength as well as daily walks and am pleased to report that my back is now fully on the mend!

Energy Booster

Last week was a total write off. I was struck down with an awful flu and spent my days going from couch to bed, sleeping, coughing, sneezing and just generally feeling pretty average. While I could certainly get used to Vegemite toast for breakfast lunch and dinner and Girls marathons, my life must go on! I find that after being sick, the hardest thing to retain are my energy levels, so this week I’m making a conscious effort to give my body the love it needs to put a bit of a spring back into my step!

1. Power Breakfast 

Breakfast is my favourite meal of the day and I have a huge sweet tooth so this week I’ll be preparing a batch of bircher muesli to have in my fridge ready for me every morning! Oats are low GI, providing your body with sustained energy release throughout the morning and Greek yoghurt is a great source of protein and essential fats for energy. Check out this Summer Spice Bircher Muesli recipe by Cook Republic. Image courtesy of Cook Republic.

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2. Move It

This week I’ll be ramping up my Xtend Barre sessions at Pure Moves and getting some afternoon bike rides in on my Specialized Sirrus Elite. Living in Perth means I am spoilt for choice when it comes to cycle routes, but nothing beats a cruise along Cottesloe beach as the sun is setting. Image via wind-inyourhair.tumblr.com

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Developed from a dance / Pilates background the Xtend Barre workout combines the amazing results of dance with the principles of strength and safety in Pilates. The Xtend Barre system sculpts the body proportionally so that all body parts are equally challenged. This total body workout serves to strengthen, lengthen and stretch the body from top to bottom, from inside out. Image via Xtend Barre Melbourne.

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3. Greens  

Nature’s green superfood, Spirulina, has found its way back into my supplement routine. Boasting over 100 synergistic nutrients, spirulina comes from a microscopic freshwater plant that is ecologically grown without chemicals. I’m looking forward to reconnecting with this rich and complete source of nutrition which is perfect for maintaining health, energy and optimum weight. Image via Synergy Natural.

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4. Snack Right

Snacking can sometimes be our biggest downfall in the quest to lose weight or be healthy. Muesli bars, cake, cookies and other processed snacks are pretty tempting, especially when the afternoon slump hits, but avoiding packaged foods is the way to go. 4pm is the ideal time for a healthy fix, since its likely halfway between lunch and dinner. Apples and pears are the ultimate healthy fast food, nuts and seeds give you natural energy, and the vitamins in green juices revitalize you and your brain.

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5. Rest and Relaxation

Restorative yoga is my favorite night-time cure for a highly stressful day. There really is nothing better than unwinding, clearing your mind and grounding your breath with a series of yoga poses. Yoga Alchemy in Perth offer a fantastic Flow and Restore class that is a combination of vinyasa flow and restorative postures and techniques. I’ll definitely be stopping by after work for one of their classes this week! Image via Yoga Alchemy.

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