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Commando Steve’s top 20 tips to make 2020 your fittest yet

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The Coaching Zone ambassador wants us to start the Roaring 20s on the right note.

1. Be committed to the entire process of improving your health. This is where most people come unstuck. Commitment requires discipline not motivation. Be consistent and patient – trust the process.

2. Drink more water – at least six-eight glasses each day.

3. Download some new workout tunes.

4. Prioritise good sleep as much as you prioritise exercise.

5. Be more mindful of your feelings, thoughts, emotions and reactive behaviours. Start by putting some space between what is happening and your reactions – this will provide you with an opportunity to be more present and aware of the choices you are making (and why). With time and practice you will begin to recognise what is creating resistance in your life and stopping you from achieving the results you want.

6. Take time to regularly stop and breathe. Notice where you feel stress, pain or fear in your body and focus on sending some deep breaths to that area.

7. Sit in a quiet space, have a sheet of blank paper and pen and then close your eyes. Take seven-10 deep breathes and notice what thoughts come into your mind. The thoughts will most likely relate to a belief you have about yourself or something that is happening in your life. Open your eyes, write these thoughts on a sheet of paper, then read them back and ask yourself, “Are these thoughts based on fact/reality or are they things I’m telling myself that may not be true?” By simply challenging your thoughts you are opening your mind to other possibilities in 2020.

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8. Write a new goal down and put it somewhere you will see it every day.

9. Each day you choose to do something that you know will move you towards that goal, put a star or a tick on that goal sheet. By recognising all the small actions you take, you are building your confidence in being able to reach your goal.

10. Eat whole foods regularly, minimum of three meals throughout the day.

11. Do 10 minutes of meditation in your bedroom before you get into bed. Using a guided meditation app works perfectly here. And you’ll be setting yourself up for a deeper sleep.

12. Visualise what you want to achieve by closing your eyes for a few moments and playing a movie in your mind. Repeat this ‘mind movie’ every morning and night and notice how this shifts your energy and mood on a daily basis.

13. Surround yourself with the right people to create a support network. We all experience times of doubt and uncertainty. Having courageous, compassionate and supportive people in our fold keeps us in check, accountable and reminds us of the journey we have embarked on. Who are these people? Family, friends, work colleagues, neighbours, gym peers, trainers, coaches, anyone you make a connection with who encourages you to dig deep and keep putting one foot in front of the other.

14. Ask a friend to sign up to a gym with you so you can keep each other accountable. Or, consider joining group personal training. Programs like Coaching Zone provide a great community atmosphere where you’ll find plenty of like-minded people who will happily help keep you on track.

15. Be present and aware of everything that you choose to do and not do. These are your old habits and behaviours that, more often than not, are so entrenched you don’t even realise they exist but they undermine your efforts at every turn.

16. On a Sunday night, schedule in your workouts/activities you will do the coming week. Put them in your phone diary and set an alert. See your workouts as a time to hit pause on the world and just focus on your body and mind for a small period of time.

17. Get yourself a trainer. If you’re not training with purpose and good form, you’re wasting your time and energy. The benefits of working with a trainer and in a group more often than not sees people achieving far better results than those who train alone and just go through the motions. Support and knowledge goes a long way in helping you achieve your goals.

18. Find an affirmation you like that really resonates and means something to you. Repeat it when you’re in difficult situations to cultivate and encourage a more positive perspective.

19. When you can, do your exercise first thing in the morning. It sets you up for the day and gives you a sense of accomplishment and a more positive outlook.

20. Believe in your ability and what is possible.

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Fitness

Super cushy running shoes may not be your friend

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While a thick-soled running shoe feels comfortable, new studies show that a thinner style may be better for your stride.

There’s something cloud-like about a maximalist sneaker. All that cushioning is extra bouncy and it feels like you’re running on air.

But it turns out that not being able to feel the road underfoot is affecting your gait.

A new study that compared the effects of maximalist vs neutral sneakers over the course of a 5km run found that “runners exhibited increased impact forces and loading rate when running in a maximal versus neutral shoe. Because increases in these variables have been associated with an increased risk of running-related injuries, runners who are new to running in a maximal shoe may be at an increased risk of injury.”

It’s because runners are landing on their feet harder, thinking that there’s more protection from all that cushioning. This means they’re more susceptible to pronate more, which is when their ankles roll inward as they take off.

But then this study of the minimalist, webbed-foot sneakers that were all the rage a few years ago showed that in some cases, it increased injuries compared to standard sneakers.

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So what to do?

Assistant professor of kinesiology at San Jose State University, J. Hannigan, said thicker soles contributed towards more ankle movement.

“If you extend a shoe’s height, it will tend to be more unstable,” he told the New York Times.

Then there’s this study that says while maximal running shoes are increasing in popularity, their greater loading rates, impact forces and the eversion mechanics in these styles “may indicate an increased risk of injury.”

So don’t just reach for the thicker soled sneakers just because they’re all the rage. Visit a speciality sports store to get fitted for the right pair for you.

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Fitness

MAFS’ Mikey’s hilarious ‘workout’ 

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Fitness

We’ll take one of everything from P.E Nation’s H&M collaboration

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Launching globally in stores and online on March 5th, the Australian activewear brand has worked hard on a sustainable collection to bring P.E Nation's unique aesthetic to the legging-loving masses.

If you're a lover of activewear, Pip Edwards' and Claire Tregoning's success story is probably not new to you. The best friends and business partners started their fashion/street/sportswear brand P.E Nation back in March of 2016, and now – almost exactly four years on – the duo are celebrating a big milestone; a global collaboration with blockbuster Swedish fashion chain, H&M.

The capsule collection riffs on P.E Nation's distinctive take on retro sportswear, but with a modern nod to sustainability – using organic cotton and recycled polyester throughout the 30-piece capsule, which includes swimwear, shoes and accessories, as well as apparel.

The price point will no doubt prove a drawcard for those who love the P.E 'look', but may not want to cough up $150 for a pair of leggings. Tanks start from $49.99, leggings $79.99 and statement outerwear for $89.99 – significantly less than the brand's full-price offering.

Working within a contained palette of pastels teamed with black, beige and white, the collection covers the sartorial territory that P.E Nation does best – gym-to-street; with oversized windbreakers, pleated maxi skirts and logo tees making the transition from Pilates to brunch not only seamless, but also stylish.

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Co-founders Edwards and Tregoning expressed their excitement for their latest project, saying “With the H&M collaboration, we want women all over the world to live a more confident, vibrant, fashionable life whilst juggling her fast-paced urban existence.The collection can be worn all day, every day, whilst being flexible, functional andstyle-led. All the pieces work so well together – it’s very easy to mix and match.”

The collection launches in H&M stores in Australia (and globally), as well as online, on March 5th, and by the looks of this it's going to sell its side-striped socks off. See below for some of our favourites from the range.

P.E Nation x H&M collection:

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