4 Must-Read Books for Better Health + Nutrition

4 Must-Read Books for Better Health + Nutrition

The main point I want to make with this article is that the vast majority of the information in these books should be common knowledge.

I can’t stress that enough.

It horrifies me to think that this incredibly valuable information is out there, pretty much for free, and yet some people are never exposed to it.

Here are 4 must-read books to help you improve your health + nutrition.

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The Need-To-Know on Your Pelvic Floor + How Elvie Helps You To Do Your Kegels

The Need-To-Know on Your Pelvic Floor + How Elvie Helps You To Do Your Kegels

Ladies, do you do pelvic floor exercises? 

Honestly?

I’m sure, like me, you’re aware of how important they are. Yet, also like me, when it comes to training these muscles, you’ll probably remember that they exist every fortnight or so, and exercise them by squeezing ‘down there’ how ever many times you deem useful (10, 15, 20 times?) before getting distracted by something else.

Needless to say, there are lots of things wrong with training your pelvic floor muscles in this way:  
* You don’t really know if you are squeezing the muscles correctly  
* You aren’t sure if you are squeezing for long enough, hard enough, or a many times as you should  
* You don’t have any way to measure your progress  
* It’s boring as hell, making it very easy to become distracted

Thankfully, some very clever ladies out there have designed a sleek little gadget and app called Elvie to overcome all of these problems.

But first, here's why doing kegels is important in the first place...

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Healthy Things To Do In Rio De Janeiro

Healthy Things To Do In Rio De Janeiro

I was lucky enough to spend a week in Rio de Janeiro with Swisse - the official vitamin choice of Team GB - soaking up Brazilian culture and the excitement of the 2016 Olympic Games.

The Olympic Games represent health, fitness and dedication like nothing else and it was incredible to feel a part of them when in Rio.

Of course, the Olympics only last a couple of weeks in August, and the Paralympics a couple of weeks in September 2016, so not everyone will have the opportunity to experience them when visiting Rio de Janiero. Thankfully, there are lots of other things you can do if you want to experience a fit, healthy and inspiring trip to Rio...

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The Complete Guide to Heart Rate Training

The Complete Guide to Heart Rate Training

Your heart rate (HR) is a useful measure of your activity level and training intensity when exercising. When your exercise intensity increases, your heart rate also increases to match the increased rate of energy expenditure and oxygen uptake. 

Heart rate can be expressed as the absolute number of beats per minute (bpm) or as a percentage of your maximum heart rate (% HRmax). 

Knowing your heart rate in bpm at any point in time may not be a very useful measure on it’s own. So, to put it in context, it’s a good idea to have some ideas of where you sit across other heart rate measures...

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Understanding Dairy Intolerance + the A2 Milk Protein

Understanding Dairy Intolerance + the A2 Milk Protein

As you will know if you have explored other articles on my blog, I am really interested in the topic of food intolerance.

Over a year ago, I discovered through a food intolerance test that I don’t tolerate milk well. My first food intolerance test through York Test gave me no more information than that. 

However, knowing that food intolerance testing of this kind tests intolerance to proteins in foods, and knowing that there are several types of milk protein, I went on a quest to find out more. 

My next food intolerance test (and the one that I would recommend to anyone) from CNS revealed my ‘milk’ intolerance to be to casein specifically. 

Since then, I haven’t generally consumed dairy products, and in particular, I have avoided buying and drinking cow’s milk.

Within the last month, I have bought and drunk cow’s milk again for the first time in at least a year. 

Read on to find out why I did this, as well as learn more about dairy intolerance and what’s really in the milk that we as a population consume so much of...

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The Products that Changed my Health & Fitness Journey + Four-Year Giveaway

The Products that Changed my Health & Fitness Journey + Four-Year Giveaway

I started writing a fitness blog when I made the decision to study for a degree, and I thought that starting a blog would be a great way to get back into the habit of writing and having a project to work on. 

I had no idea that it would become so much more than that. 

I’m now celebrating four years of writing The Blonde Ethos. (And running a massive giveaway to mark the milestone.. Read on!) 

In those four years, The Blonde Ethos has evolved massively, from a place to document my own balanced lifestyle and discovery of various workouts and products, to what I hope you find to be a valuable resource for health, nutrition and training. 

I’m really passionate about learning as much as I can about healthy living, and really, really passionate about passing my knowledge on to you, to help you find the same drive to learn about and better your body as I am lucky to have done. 

I want to keep The Blonde Ethos authentic, honest and backed by science and experience. I also want to keep it evolving, so please let me know what you would love to see more (or less!) of!

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The Science of Sleep: Optimising Sleep for Health + Recovery

The Science of Sleep: Optimising Sleep for Health + Recovery

Good health is achieved from the optimisation of the elements in the ‘health triangle’; a trinity of nutrition, training and sleep. While all of these elements work together, even the best training routine and nutrition programme cannot compensate for insufficient rest from good quality sleep.

Sleep duration and quality can affect many things, including muscle recovery and building, weight loss and maintenance, hormone levels that influence your overall health, athletic performance, and cognition. 

So, here's what you need to know about sleep, as well as a definitive list of all the ways (according to both sceience and my own experience) that you can induce and improve your sleep.
 

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Speedflex Review + The Need-To-Know On Eccentric Muscle Contractions

Speedflex Review + The Need-To-Know On Eccentric Muscle Contractions

I love the concept of heart rate training (more on that coming soon!) and since I tried Orangetheory last year, I’ve been on the look out for more fitness studios that offer heart rate training.

One such place is Speedflex. However, while I was drawn to this studio by my fascination with heart rate monitoring, I found that Speedflex had some far more unique qualities to be discovered...

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Using Data to Monitor Your Health: What I Learnt From A Medical Trial

Using Data to Monitor Your Health: What I Learnt From A Medical Trial

It’s no secret that I’m fascinated by health monitoring and the increasingly amazing options for tracking our health and fitness that are coming about thanks to new tech.

Over two and a half years ago, I watched an episode of BBC Horizon called Monitor Me, which I think was a cataylst for my curiosity.

Since then, I have tried things like tracking my nutrient intake with MyFitnessPal and recording my activity and workouts with fitness trackers, but as I mentioned in my article on wearable tech, I struggle to find the value in using any devices over an extended period of time.

I think part of the reason that I was so fascinated by Monitor Me, was that everyone featured on the show was recording their data for really specific purposes; they knew what they were looking for in their data and they had a specific outcome in mind, be it weight-loss or better sporting performance. Plus, they were working with professionals in their field.

This kind of structure is something that I’ve lacked so far when toying with health and fitness tech, simply because I haven’t needed it.

Now, that has changed.

I’ve pushed my interest a little further and got involved with a clinical trial to see if self-monitoring can have a direct, positive effect on health.

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