- Category: Blog
Physical fitness is a general state of health and well-being and, more specifically, the ability to perform aspects of sports or occupations. Physical fitness is generally achieved through correct nutrition, moderate-vigorous physical activity, exercise and rest. It is a set of attributes or characteristics seen in people and which relate to the ability to perform a given set of physical activities.
Sick of the same old workout routine? Enter: Pilates. This invigorating program really does live up to the hype. A regular Pilates routine can help you redefine your feelings on fitness and wellness.
Here’s the ultimate 30-day Pilates boot camp for beginners.
What is it?
What equipment do I need?
More good news: It’s a very adaptable fitness system, so you can adjust it to your fitness level and needs. You can even do it at home!
This 1-month routine is all about building a foundation with Pilates basics. The moves get gradually more intense each week, but the plan is def geared toward beginners.
Even though it’s a 30-day program, feel free to tweak it to fit your schedule and goals. You can stick to the program once a week, every day, or anything in between. (FYI: The sweet spot for a lot of people is 3 or 4 days a week.)
If you haven’t exercised in a long time or if you’re recovering from an illness or injury, give your doctor a heads-up before starting this program.
This week is about getting comfy with the fundamentals of Pilates. Let’s take it step by step.
Pro tip: Practice this a few times. There should be space between your neck and the floor when you’re relaxed and your spine is in neutral position.
Pro tip: Keep your ribs stationary as you move.
Are you warmed up? Now let’s add a few classic Pilates moves!
Pro tip: Straighten your knees and move your legs closer to the floor for a bigger challenge.
Pro tip: Put your hands behind your thighs for a helpful push.
Pro tip: Focus on the stability of your pelvis and the rest of your body so only your active leg is moving.
This week you’ll build on the basics and progress into more challenging positions.
This will look just like the beginner Roll-Up, but with one leg extended up.
Pro tip: Focus on keeping your hips and shoulders stable so only your limbs are moving.
If you’re slaying all these moves, it’s time to level up. But you can still stick to the routine from Week 1 or Week 2 if that’s more your vibe. This is your Pilates, babe.
You’ve been doing Pilates so long it’s practically a habit! This week, pick and choose your faves from previous weeks and add a few new moves.
Pro tip: Keep your hips stable and your spine straight.
Pro tip: Move only your legs. The rest of your body should be stable.
If you finished this 30-day Pilates program and still want more, congrats! You’re a #PilatesPerson now. Welcome to the team.
You can continue your home Pilates routine with the help of online classes, videos, or a fitness app. Or you can opt for in-person classes at your local gym or wellness center. Either way, you’ll be getting a great workout for your body and your mind.
“Ugh, I hate squats, they burn so much.”
If this sounds like you, you may not even notice you squat throughout the day. We squat when we lift things, when we play with our pets, and when we go from sitting to standing. (And who doesn’t like sitting down?)
No, squats aren’t always as fun as patting your pup. But squat workouts are a great way to work your muscles and increase your strength, balance, and flexibility.
The number of calories burned during a squat depends on your weight, how long you hold your squat, and the overall intensity of your squat sesh.
Let’s drop it like it’s squat and calculate the calorie burn.
Before we dive into it, an important PSA…
If you fixate on calories, you won’t enjoy eating or working out. And you should have a great time doing both.
The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) provide more information for people who are concerned here.
There are several factors to bear in mind when calculating the number of calories your squats sesh is gonna burn:
MET stands for metabolic equivalent (not an exclusive fashion gala, sorry). It’s the value that’s going to help you determine just how many calories you’ll be kicking to the curb at any given intensity.
The easiest way to find your MET value is to take a look at a MET table. You can also estimate your MET value by evaluating how you feel while exercising:
Once you have your MET value, it’s math time (yay!). Follow this simple formula to determine how many calories you’re burning each minute:
.0175 x MET x weight (in kg) = calories burned per minute
“I didn’t sign up for math,” we hear you cry at the other side of the screen. That’s fine — here’s the formula in motion to make it hella easy.
This demo uses a person who weighs 165 pounds. Let’s call them Jeremy.
First, you’ll want to convert pounds into kilograms: 165 lbs / 2.2 = 75 kg
Next, determine the MET value. Jeremy is really bringing it, getting super into a high-intensity exercise. He’s clearly at a MET of 8.0.
Then, plug these values into your formula:
.0175 x 8 x 75 = 10.5
Jeremy is smashing up 10.5 calories every minute.
To find out how many calories he’ll burn during the entire workout, multiply this number by the total number of minutes you’re exercising. Let’s say Jeremy plans to do squats for 5 minutes:
10.5 x 5 = 52.5
And there you have it: 165-pound Jeremy will burn 52.5 calories during 5 minutes of high-intensity squats! Go towel yourself down and have a green smoothie, jeez. You’ve earned it.
The handy chart below shows you the range of calories that a 140-pound (63.5-kilogram) person generally burns:
|Length of exercise||3.5 METS (low intensity)||8.0 METS (high intensity)|
|5 minutes||19 calories||44 calories|
|15 minutes||58 calories||133 calories|
|25 minutes||97 calories||222 calories|
Squats are a great way to get your body moving, your heart pumping, and those calories crunching away. They work a variety of muscles, including your:
They’re also a super safe way to work out (when you pull them off correctly, of course).
So how do you do a squat the right way? It’s all in the form.
Follow these steps to get your best basic squat down pat:
Bump up your squat game by putting these tips into action:
Once you’ve conquered the basics, try these fun (and calorie-crunching!) variations that take it up a notch.
Choose which one you’d like to try, and start with 3 sets of 8 to 15 reps. As you master each one, you can increase the number of reps.
Plié squats help activate those inner thigh muscles.
A plié is a common ballet move, but don’t worry. You don’t have to be a prima ballerina to add these into your squat routine. Barre workouts feature a heck of a lot of ballet technique, and this is no different.
The focus here is the positioning of the feet to point outward at an angle, rather than forward.
Pro tip: Add in a set of weights for extra intensity.
Throwing a set of hand weights into the mix can help boost your muscular strength.
Pro tip: New to weights? Start with lighter ones, then add more pounds as you become more comfortable with the moves.
Want to hone in on one leg at a time? Add in a lunge and make it a split squat! You can also choose a set of weights to add extra variety to this move.
Pro tip: make it a Bulgarian side squat by elevating your back leg onto a chair or bench (or whatever you have at home that works!) that’s several inches off the ground.
Then do the steps above. This is a bit of an advanced move, so don’t add in weights until you’ve mastered it.
Put a little pep in that squat step with a little plyometrics (aka jumping). Plyo exercises help build strength and speed, while adding some heart-pumping cardio to your routine.
Pro tip: This is an advanced move and not recommended for beginners. Work your way up to jump squats by mastering other variations first.
If you live with knee or joint pain, it may be best to skip jump squats entirely, as they’ll put force on your lower joints. This could lead to injury if this is already a problem area for you.
If jump squats aren’t your jam but you still want to up the ante with your squat sesh, try doing some squat pulses. This variation keeps your muscles moving and engaged the whole time you’re doing them.
Pro tip: Looking for an advanced move? Combine squat pulses with jump squats. To do this, lower into your squat, pulse once, then jump up. Land back into your squat, pulse again, and repeat.
Squats are a great way to get in a good workout while burning calories.
The number of calories you can burn while doing squats depends on a variety of factors, including your weight, intensity, and how long you spend doing them.
If you’re a squat newbie, start by mastering the basic squat. Make sure you’re practicing your form and using the right muscles, so that you don’t put yourself at risk of injury.
Once you’ve become a pro, spice up your workout with one of the many squat variations out there, working in pulses, jumps, or dumbbells.
There are so many variations out there, you won’t know when to stop.
Activated charcoal has taken TikTok by storm. The cool kids claim it can give you a full face glow-up — that means cleaner, softer, and all around better looking skin.
But let’s be real… is activated charcoal actually legit? Here’s the deets.
Activated charcoal might:
Bonus: It also has antibacterial and antifungal properties.
When regular charcoal is exposed to high heat, it produces a fine black powder, aka activated charcoal. So don’t worry, it’s not the same as what you grill with 😉.
The powder is porous and highly absorbent which can help suck up gunk. This might leave you with clearer maybe-they’re-born-with-it skin.
FYI: Activated charcoal is good for most skin types, but it might benefit peeps with oily skin the most.
Some anecdotal evidence supports activated charcoal’s skin benefits. But TBH, more hard evidence is needed to prove that it actually works.
Here’s what it might do.
The good news: There are plenty of ways to zap your zits and activated charcoal is one of them.
The antibacterial and porous properties of activated charcoal might be able to draw out bacteria trapped in your pores. This can improve your overall complexion.
Some skin experts think that activated charcoal masks can help remove impurities from your skin. That’s because it acts like a magnet, absorbing bacteria and toxins 🧲. This might leave you with a clearer complexion.
Bug bites are the WORST. Thankfully, activated charcoal can help you ditch the itch. It might be able to help neutralize the toxins in insect venom, soothing the sting.
Thanks to its oil-absorbing superpowers, activated charcoal may be able to unclog your pores. This leaves them free and clear of the nasty impurities that can lead to whiteheads and those stubborn AF blackheads.
You might also notice that your pores appear smaller over time (though pore size can’t actually shrink), but there’s little to no real science to support this.
Activated charcoal’s antibacterial and antifungal properties can help heal damaged skin. It may also soothe symptoms of skin conditions like eczema or psoriasis. But keep in mind, very little research is available in this area.
Because of its gritty yet soft texture, activated charcoal serves as a natural exfoliant. It can slough off dead skin cells to reveal the healthy glow of the fresh new skin underneath.
Activated charcoal isn’t hella harsh so it prob won’t hurt your skin. But as with any skin care product, overuse can lead to dryness, redness, or itching.
Patch PSA: Do a patch test before lathering your new product all over your beautiful face. Just apply a little of the product to the inside of your elbow. If you don’t see any irritation after a few hours, you should be good to go.
While we all love a great online deal, beware of charcoal goods sold by unregulated vendors.
The law doesn’t require cosmetic products and ingredients, other than color additives, to have FDA approval before they go on the market. Always opt for products that have been through third-party testing
You can use an activated charcoal mask while you’re getting ready in the morning or as part of your bedtime routine. There are many kinds of masks that contain charcoal. Here’s the gist depending on the product you choose.
Once or twice each week is best — less often if you have sensitive skin or notice dryness.
There are lots of options to choose from when looking for your perfect mask. Here are the best products for your individual skin care needs.
Buy Burt’s Bees Detoxifying Charcoal Sheet Mask online.
Tip: If looking to help absorb excess oil, opt for a mask the contains clay.
This kaolin clay-infused mask draws out impurities while micro-exfoliating the skin. Bonus: It comes in a convenient stick form which can prevent a nasty mask mess.
Tip: Avoid masks that have dyes, fragrances, parabens, or other harsh chemicals.
This mask is both gentle and effective. Bamboo charcoal detoxifies as fermented honey soothes and nourishes your skin. It’s good for all types of sensitive skin.
Buy ORIGINS Clear Improvement Charcoal Honey Mask online.
This wonder ingredient is also sometimes used to treat other conditions like:
Activated charcoal is all the rage in the beauty world, rumored to promote clearer, healthier skin. Even though there’s little research available to back it up, it can’t hurt to try.
A fresh pair of sweats, mega-cozy socks, or the even the perfect hoodie can’t fix the dumpster fire that has been 2020. But at least you’ll be comfy AF in your dope new loungewear.
To save you hours of online scrolling, we pulled together the best of the bunch. Here are the best loungewear options to take your comfort and style to a whole new level.
As far as we’re concerned, loungewear should be:
All of the picks on our list fit this VOC (Very Official Criteria) to ensure your lounging sesh is legit.
There’s basic loungewear and there’s luxe loungewear — we threw a bit of both into the mix.
If you love a twofer, add this shirt-plus-pants set to your cart. They’re stretchy, lightweight, and the color combos are more fun than basic black or gray. Plus, you can’t beat the price.
This comfy crewneck is a classic for a reason. The warm cotton-poly blend is super soft and won’t pill when you toss it in the wash.
Pro tip: Go for the men’s over the women’s — the cut is cooler and there are way more colors to pick from.
It’s comfy but won’t make you look like a schlub on Zoom calls. The vintage-inspired prints are on point and the rayon-acrylic blend is more breathable than fleece.
Booty bonus: The longer length will keep your butt extra cozy.
Loose without being baggy, you’ll def want to wear this super-soft sweatshirt every day. And the muted colors — like green tea, clamshell brown, and periscope — say pure chillaxation.
Think of the sweats your mom would’ve worn in the ’80s. We’re all about the poly-cotton fabric blend, elastic waist, banded ankles, and retro colors.
Heads up: They’re sized for men, so shop accordingly.
Proof that “flattering sweatpants” isn’t an oxymoron. The mid-weight fleece boasts side seam pockets and a broken-in feel. Our fave is the tie-dye wash.
Made of lightweight cotton, these jogger-style sweats will look great whether you’re chilling on the couch or out running errands. Oh, and we love that they come in tons of great colors too.
Slim, slightly shrunken fit? Check. Looks just as good with sweats or leggings as it does with jeans or a skirt? Heck yes. Comes in lots of colors and at a price where you can stock up? 10/10.
This fleece is soft and warm like a wearable teddy bear 🧸. It’s fab for running errands or socially distanced outdoor hangs… though you won’t want to take it off when you come back inside.
The cropped, boxy fit will make you feel like you actually got dressed. The fact that it’s made from recycled plastic makes it even better.
The cotton-spandex fabric has an everyday feel. The wide waistband means no pinching or digging, and the 29-inch inseam will keep your ankles toasty. They’re just great.
These are designed for working out — thanks four-way stretch and moisture-wicking fabric! But the shiny fabric and incredible color options (gold! periwinkle!) are so cool you’ll want to wear them 24/7.
What’s not to love? 1) The cotton-modal fabric is buttery soft and stretchy. 2) The multiway straps can be criss-crossed or removed altogether. 3) You can toss it in the wash without worry.
(Plus, it just looks seriously cool.)
This ICONIC tank looks great on it’s own, but the cotton-poly fabric is light enough for layering too. Shopper hack: You can get FIVE boys’ tanks for the price of one adult women’s tank.
These granny panties are what dreams are made of. The above-the-navel rise and full cheek coverage is perfection. The stretchy cotton fabric feels fab and the bound-edge construction means no pinching. Oh, and the earth tone-y color selection is amazing.
Do you ever wish your robe (or button down flannel) could do more? Like have a reinforced beer-holder pocket, and a loop to hold your sunglasses, and an interior lining that operates as a towel, and a water-resistance zippered pocket for your phone or valuables.
Consider this your Swiss Army robe with pockets on pockets and the softest terry cloth lining. You might never take it off.
Wool socks are nice in theory… but unless you’re a serious hiker, the price probs isn’t worth it. These cotton-poly-wool blend socks are just as cozy and won’t cost the same as a monthly utility bill. They also come in a ton of cool colors and patterns.
If you’ve ever just want to stay in bed all day, this one’s for you. The cotton-jersey fabric is ultra soft and easy to move around in. We also dig the adjustable shoulder straps which allow for a customizable fit.
This badass body suit is so cool, it’s basically an instant mood booster. If looking at yourself in the mirror isn’t enough, blast some throwback tunes and #DanceLikeNoOnesWatching.
The holidays are the time for velvet, baby. But if you’re staying home this year, you can trade the fancy dress or pants for this equally luxe jumpsuit. You’ll still be psyched to wear it even after New Year’s.
This PJ set will make you want to stay in bed — with a pour-over coffee and good book — all day long. The impeccable cut, silky smooth fabric, and rich color will make any lazy day classy.
Sure, you could DIY your tie-dye. But with color options this good, you def don’t need to. You can pick between a long-sleeved top and jogger-style bottoms or drawstring shorts.
Bonus: The poly-cotton blend fabric is cozy and super soft.
Professional lounging calls for shorts that deliver next-level comfort. These buttery soft and stretchy cuties are made from acrylic, rayon, and spandex. You can wear them all year long and they won’t go out of style.
Look at the soft fuzzy fabric and the plush footbed. How could you not want these on your feet right now? The sturdy rubber sole means you won’t slip ‘n’ slide around either.
Yup, there are some serious ballerina vibes going on here. But the contoured waistband, breathable fabric, built-in bra, and stretchy nylon-Lycra fabric means it’s also perfect for hanging out at home. Or, wear it as a base layer for chilly outdoor hangouts.
The cotton fabric is soft but substantial with a touch of stretch that makes it easy to move. The lounge pant, tank top, and kimono-style jacket combo work individually or altogether. FYI: It also transitions into the perfect nursing ensemble.
It’s designed for pregnant peeps, but you def don’t need a bun in the oven to love the heck out of this soft, breezy house dress. (Though new moms and moms-to-be will definitely appreciate the nursing-friendly buttons.) And if you wanna wear it out, that works too.
The organic long-staple cotton is thick, lofty, and just all-around swanky. It’s also hella toasty and towel-level absorbent for those dreaded cold winter mornings.
Perfectly slouchy with adjustable knotted traps and flat front pockets, you could definitely wear these out and look pretty awesome in an IDGAF kinda way. But the loose fit and cool cotton-linen blend fabric makes them really great for just hanging out at home.
On days when you really wish you had a reason to get dressed, reach for this full-length nightgown. The pretty lace detailing gives it an extra special feel. If you take some mirror selfies for the ‘gram, folks will totes ask where you got it from.
Everyone’s baseline style is down at least one fancy notch right now. So if leggings and a hoodie are your weekday uniform, you can don this fleecy blanket robe on the weekend.
You’re here! That means it’s Monday, or it’s feeling like one. Don’t worry Greatist has your back. Subscribe to our newsletter for direct access to Mondays with Minaa, a mental health column by our resident self-care expert, Minaa.
Hi Greatist readers, happy Monday!
We are finally at the end of November, time flies by! I hope these self-care practices have been helpful for you during this month and I’m looking forward to sharing the last dimension with you.
Spiritual self-care is all about connecting to something greater than ourselves. For some, it might be connecting with God through prayer. For others, it might be going for a walk and being in tune with nature. Spiritual self-care gives us the ability to live in a state of mindfulness and connect with the deeper parts of ourselves.
As we shift into the final month of the year, I encourage you to engage in spiritual wellness. Here are some reflective questions to help you with this process:
Give yourself some time to reflect on these questions daily. I look forward to checking back in with you all next month!