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Get your fitness journey going this 2020 with total body workouts, and the right pre- and post-exercise drink



It’s February already and if that balik-alindog program you have set at the beginning of this new year and decade is still not rolling, fret not. It’s still not too late.

If you’re dreaming of only six-pack abs, though, you’re dreaming wrong. Investing much of your time and effort in doing what you falsely believe as a one-exercise-does-it-all—sit-ups, perhaps—is not only a misconception, it’s no fun at all, too. Know that you can achieve those dream abs and more through more efficient means, like total body workouts.

Training every major muscle in the body, full-body workouts consist of exercises that engage the chest, back, arms, hamstrings, and abs all in one compound movement.

Enter Plana Forma, a form of total-body workout that combines yoga, dance, pilates, and barre. It works on targeting the abdominal, thigh, hip, and seat muscles while strengthening the back and engaging the hamstrings.


Each 55-minute session starts, as usual, with warm-up exercises—first using two sets of weights to activate the upper body and arms, and second, push-ups and core stability work for a full-body prep.

What follows are a number of barre exercises requiring tiny movements—or as heard and experienced in the class, “pulses”—for a guaranteed intense burn on the seat muscles, thighs, calves, hips, and abs.

To cool down, meanwhile, means doing a series of stretching exercises.


All those core and leg exercises will go to waste if you don’t eat the right food and drink the right beverage to complement the work you put in on that gym sesh.

Drinking water is good, but tea, even better. Having green tea, especially pre-workout, aids in weight loss. In fact, a study has shown that drinking it before a 30-minute, moderate-intensity cardio helps burn up to 17 percent more fat.

A post-workout cup of green tea, meanwhile, replenishes the body, leaving it feeling refreshed.

Lucky for those who are in search of a place to get their green tea fix, a nearby Starbucks is always ready to serve a variety of such beverages.

“At Starbucks, we have Teavana, which offers a whole slew of tea drinks,” Jo-Ann Ramos, Starbucks Philippines’ marketing manager, tells Manila Bulletin Lifestyle. “We have brewed tea, tea lattes, and even iced, shaken tea. For this season, however, it’s all about matcha.”

The brand’s new Roasted Soybean Pure Matcha Latte, which features a velvety matcha base with a nutty note, finished off with cold foam dusted with finely-ground roasted soybean powder and a drizzle of Okinawa brown sugar syrup, as well as the Black Sesame Pure Matcha Latte with Taro Foam, which uses black sesame to add a mild nuttiness to the strong, aromatic matcha base and topped with taro foam and powder, are all “from Japan, with love,” according to Ramos.


Roasted Soybean Pure Matcha Latte

“These are our less indulgent beverages for this time when our customers are, as per usual, trying to get back into their best shape and state of health,” she says. “For the drinks, we brought in a special matcha variant from Japan that’s completely unsweetened.”


Black Sesame Pure Matcha Latte with Taro Foam

Ramos and the rest of the Starbucks team, to help their customers with their wellness goals for the year, have also partnered with Plana Forma, the center named after the workout it offers, for what they call the Teavana Wellness Tour.

“This is the first tour we’ve created to feature our tea lineup,” she says.

The tour has a total of three stops, all of which are Plana Forma’s branches: Makati, Quezon City, and Alabang.

The best part, though, is that they’re giving away free slots to four lucky winners for their Feb. 11 and 13 classes in Alabang.

“On our Instagram stories, we ask what is your wellness goal this 2020, whether that’s physical, mental, or emotional,” Ramos says. “All they have to do is answer that question and they’ll get to experience how workouts are done at Plana Forma.”

The fitness center’s eagerness in extending its brand of wellness to its clients is the same level of passion palpableat Starbucks, according to Ramos, which is why she describes this collaboration as “the best partnership so far.”

“We’re linking a wellness activity to a healthier beverage, especially now that everyone is not just setting but also trying to achieve their wellness goals,” she says. “Here we are helping people do just that.”


Source: Manila Bulletin

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