Get Fit for Valentine's

Your emergency guide to looking good for that February 14 date
Thursday , 10 February 2011

Having to look your best for the most romantic day of the year can be daunting. Whether it’s making that first impression on a date or impressing your better half, the pressure is on to look great, and be romantic all in honour of lurve.

To help ensure your February 14th goes to plan we’ve narrowed down the finer details. Looking at which aphrodisiacs to look for, how to get in shape and what to eat.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT

There are certain foods that throughout history have been noted for their power to ignite passions.

And even modern science admits that many of these foods do actually raise vital energy, encourage balanced sexual hormones and trigger neurotransmitters that help spark feelings of love and sexual arousal. Nutritionaltherapist, Laura Holland from www.inshallah. org.uk reveals more…

Asparagus, the food of love? Well yes actually, they’re full of nutrients that enhance healthy hormone production essential for libido. They’re also rich in Vitamin E and
are an excellent diuretic.

Chocolate, the food of Valentines? The Aztecs thought the cacao bean could mend a broken heart. Chocolate undoubtedly is a pleasure to eat and it raises good feeling hormones, which stimulate desire. It’s also a superfood, rich in essential minerals like magnesium and powerful antioxidants.

Chilli peppers for hot loving! These spicy specimens increase blood flow and body temperature whilst helping the body to release endorphins that enhance the sensations
of pleasure. Chilli peppers are excellent for cardiovascular health and are also a natural painkiller.

Strawberries: The Roman’s fave aphrodisiac. Strawberries are food for the heart, all those antioxidants and heart healthy nutrients really do make this a food of love.

Oysters… the ultimate aphrodisiac. They may not stir feelings of romance, but they’re the most common aphrodisiac and have the science to back them. Packed with zinc (a key nutrient for testosterone production), they stimulate libido in both men and women.

QUICK SHAPE UP

You’re not going to lose weight in a week, but there are a few exercise tricks that can offer some quick release.

The guys at Apollo Fitness give their emergency workout. Though it won’t turn you into David Beckham or supermodel Gisele, it’s a start (do 10 reps and three sets or each)…

WOMEN
ALTERNATIVE SUPERMAN:

Get down on your hands and knees with your palms flat on the floor and shoulderwidth apart. Brace your abs,and raise your right arm and left leg until they’re in line
with your body. Hold for five to 10 seconds. Return to the starting position. Repeat with your left arm and right leg.

Alternate back and forth.

SEATED POSTURE FLEXION – EXTENSION:

Sit on a chair or Swiss ball with your feet flat on the ground,legs at 90 degrees and relax. Allow the upper body to relax forward from the hips, looking towards the ground with the shoulders rolled forward, arms relaxed. Take a breath in and as you exhale straighten your back whilst pulling the shoulder blades towards each other. Lift your head up so the spine is in a straight line and your hands facing outwards. Hold for 10 seconds and allow the body to relax again.

If all else fails, posture is everything so draw your shoulders back to appear taller and suck in the belly.

FOR MEN
THE PUSH UP:

Get down on all fours, hands on the floor so that they’re slightly wider than, and in line with your shoulders. Lower your body until your chest nearly touches the floor. Keep your core engaged and look towards the ground to keep your spine in a straight line.

Pause at the bottom, and then push yourself back to the start position as quickly as possible.

DUMBBELL CONCENTRATION CURL:
Sit on a bench and grasp the dumbbell in-between your feet. Curl the dumbbell towards the front of your shoulder. Lower the dumbbell until your arm is fully extended, repeat and continue with opposite arm.