Trainer Tiffiny Hall shares her ex­er­cise phi­los­o­phy – plus her full-body, at-home ton­ing rou­tine

TAEK­WONDO BLACK BELT, TRAINER AND BUSI­NESS­WOMAN TIFFINY HALL TELLS WHY NEW MUMS NEED TO BE KIND TO THEIR BOD­IES, AND SHARES HER FAVOURITE TUMMY-TON­ING AND EX­ER­CISE TIPS

Good Health Choices - - Content -

After baby Arnold was born, you spoke about the pres­sure on women to bounce back after birth. What would be your top well­ness ad­vice for new mums? »I

think it’s im­por­tant for new mums to recog­nise, even though we have had the baby, that there are still hor­monal changes af­fect­ing how we feel and how our body func­tions. Re­cov­ery and heal­ing should be the fo­cus, not bounc­ing back or los­ing weight. We have to ap­proach post-baby time with sen­si­ble emo­tional and phys­i­cal heal­ing – re­build­ing the pelvic floor, stom­ach mus­cles, joints and be­ing kind to our­selves. Con­nect­ing with our new­borns is the most im­por­tant thing.

As a trainer, I know how del­i­cate the body can be and if you push it too soon after birth you will cause other is­sues or long-term prob­lems. Take the pres­sure off, smash the count­down clock you feel is hang­ing over your head, cher­ish the new­born bub­ble, and gen­tly and slowly en­list ex­perts such as a women’s health physio, per­sonal train­ers and Pi­lates pro­fes­sion­als to help you feel strong again. Have your views on well­ness changed since hav­ing a baby? »I’ve

al­ways be­lieved in the power of ex­er­cise as trans­for­ma­tive for the mind. I pre­dom­i­nantly ex­er­cise be­cause it gives me fo­cus and men­tal clar­ity; I love the mood boost and it makes me feel so good! I’ve al­ways had a bal­anced ap­proach to ex­er­cise. Some days I’ll do taek­wondo, oth­ers a walk, some­times it’s a stretch at home or a TIFFXO.com work­out

(the fit­ness web­site she cre­ated) in my back­yard or lounge room.

Hav­ing a baby pushed my body to the lim­its. I was so sick with HG (hy­per­eme­sis gravi­darum), I put on a lot of weight, I had pu­bic sym­ph­ysis pain, pelvic in­sta­bil­ity, I broke my coc­cyx in child­birth, then broke my an­kle soon after in the fog of sleep de­pri­va­tion. I lost all my lean mus­cle mass, fit­ness and strength, and I had a big bat­tle ahead of me to re­gain my sense of self. I had to be even more adapt­able, flex­i­ble and ap­proach it

‘IF YOU PUSH IT TOO SOON AFTER BIRTH YOU WILL CAUSE OTHER IS­SUES OR LONG-TERM PROB­LEMS’

with self-love oth­er­wise I would have dam­aged my re­la­tion­ship with ex­er­cise for­ever.

I knew if I fo­cused on ‘30kg to lose’ I would hate my jour­ney back to fit­ness. Ex­er­cise to me has never been as im­por­tant as it was post­par­tum – it be­came my rock, my “me min­utes”.

When I felt my body be­longed to my baby, ex­er­cise helped me to find my strength again. By strength, I mean not only be­ing able to do a hand­stand again, but also push­ing through tired days and learn­ing to lis­ten to my ‘mum gut.’ When you’re feel­ing stressed, what do you do to re­fo­cus? »I

like to do calm, fo­cused breath­ing ex­er­cises. For three min­utes, I fo­cus on the breath en­ter­ing and leav­ing my body, let­ting thoughts pass and my mind wan­der, be­fore bring­ing my mind back to the present. This helps the body to switch off the fear cen­tre of the brain that is pump­ing stress hor­mones through the or­gans. The parasym­pa­thetic ner­vous sys­tem is also ac­ti­vated, which re­places stress with calm­ing chem­i­cals. After just a few min­utes, I’m in a bet­ter state to make de­ci­sions and plan my next move. How do you get mo­ti­vated to ex­er­cise on the days when you don’t feel like it? »Who

says you have to ex­er­cise ev­ery day?! Ex­er­cise is a re­la­tion­ship, you need to nur­ture it. I don’t force my­self to work out ever – I re­spect my body telling me when it’s tired. If I have a bad night with Arnold, then I give my­self per­mis­sion to do some­thing less in­tense the next day. I might do a slow and con­trolled TIFFXO Tone ses­sion at home, a walk with the stroller or a stretch­ing ses­sion. When you’re tired, you don’t get re­sults any­way and you only push your body into a fur­ther state of stress and de­ple­tion. What is one ex­er­cise myth you would like to see dis­ap­pear? »That

crunches get abs! This is so ar­chaic! Firstly, we all have abs, it’s just de­pen­dent on if you can see them or not due to body fat per­cent­age. Abs re­veal them­selves when you eat well and re­duce your body fat, but abs in them­selves are pretty use­less. When we talk of the abs, we’re speak­ing of the trans­verse ab­dom­i­nals, the brick­like mus­cles down the cen­tre of your stom­ach. They are not very help­ful for over­all core strength.

I want to move away from the

‘beach body ab goal’ to­wards more of a fo­cus and ed­u­ca­tion on over­all core strength which in­cludes glutes, pelvic floor, di­aphragm, lower back and obliques. Crunches don’t im­prove your core strength. If you want a phe­nom­e­nal look­ing tummy you have to fo­cus on your whole core, and eat­ing well too. It’s a holis­tic ap­proach. Train­ing your core for seven min­utes a week will do more for you than

700 crunches ever will. What’s the best piece of well­ness ad­vice you’ve ever heard? »It’s

from my grand­mother and it comes from our re­la­tion­ship with our­selves and our essence of self-worth. “Self love is like great bread. It has to be baked fresh ev­ery sin­gle day”. *See Tiff’s easy full-body tone-up over the page…

‘I KNEW IF I FO­CUSED ON 30KG TO LOSE I WOULD HATE MY JOUR­NEY BACK TO FIT­NESS’

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