Time to get into yoga as TAG Heuer launch sporty range of watches for fitness fanatics

Nick Watkins 14/02/2018
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By exercising in the morning, your body takes advantage of naturally circulating hormones as they’re peaking, rather than later in the day when they’re lower. That is good to know as the sun rises above our yoga session in the heart of the Dubai desert at the exclusive Al Maha Resort.

The benefits of yoga are proven to increase the body’s flexibility, muscle strength and athletic performance, along with improvements to your cardio and circulatory health and protection from injury. Manchester United legend Ryan Giggs credits daily yoga for extending his Premier League playing career into his 40s. The stretching and breathing exercises relax both the body and mind, something, which TAG Heuer is setting out to achieve with their latest sporty collection of timepieces.

Partnerships with the Formula 1 Red Bull Racing Ream, Premier League, Bundesliga, MLS, and Dubai and Abu Dhabi Tours mean it’s crucial for the watchmakers’ products to be suitable for athletes.

A new range of smart watches being showcased by the Swiss company are made from stainless steel and are totally waterproof up to 50m, making them suitable for all sports including surfing, diving and swimming. Runners can benefit from the built-in GPS allowing users to track their route and distance.

The new Connected Modular 41 and 45 use the combination of Swiss luxury watchmaking and Silicon Valley Technology to create his and hers smartwatches, suitable for sport but fitted with interchangeable straps. This same timepiece can also be worn with a suit and tie and not look out of place.

Google and Intel collaborated in the engineering of the watches so users can connect their smartphone via Bluetooth to listen to music while exercising as well as reading emails and messages from the watch-face. The interface is also fully customisable so you can change the hands to match the straps, or change the dials, which appear on screen.

Options available range from a daily step-counter to current exchange rates and even boarding passes. There are 11 modules available to choose from, which can each be changed to fit a choice of ceramic, titanium, leather or rubber straps.

Also as part of the 2018 collection is a UAE-exclusive Autavia. Named due to its close ties with automotive racing, it pays tribute to Dubai’s deserts with the unique sandy coloured strap.

Only 150 of the limited edition pieces, each engraved from 1-150, are available and only in the UAE. Guests of the Tag Heuer workout also experienced a hot air balloon ride over Dubai’s sandy landscape to celebrate the release of the new timepiece, which is likely to become as valuable as the 1962 original.

On the yoga mats, the workout session has intensified from holding triangle poses, standing with feet about apart, with toes turned out to 90 degrees with one arm reaching for the sky, to a Bridge pose – a trickier position holding the torso off the mat with knees bent and directly over heels, for one minute.

Connected Modular straps

Connected Modular straps

Our outdoor activity is designed to be a basic introduction into yoga, but under the burning sun, it’s certainly feels like a tougher workout. Keeping pace with the instructor is getting more and more difficult. Then if it was easy it wouldn’t be worth doing and in the back of my mind, I know my body will thank me later. Despite the heat, the location at the Al Maha Resort couldn’t be any better for clearing the mind. It’s a place of peace and quite away from the everyday hustle and bustle of the city.

Following the fitness session comes the first-look at the new TAG Heuer Aquaracer Men models, designed for those with an active lifestyle, are suitable for use in the gym and running track or, better still the pool, which is the perfect place to be after an hour of hot yoga.

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Five benefits of circuit training workouts

David Cooper 11/02/2018
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Circuit training is a form of body conditioning using high-intensity aerobics.

A circuit session works each section of the body, allowing you to complete a full body work-out over a quicker period of time.

In addition, you have the chance to build muscle strength and endurance, while also enhancing cardiovascular fitness.

Here’s a look at five benefits to circuit training.

TEAM WORK

Circuit training caters for people of all fitness levels. You can train with three or four friends and do exercises at different speeds. No matter your fitness level, circuit training makes you work together in a friendly and fun environment. It’s an excellent way to improve your health alongside a friend.

TONE UP

If you’re not interested in bulking up, then circuits are crucial to add to your programme. Training more than one muscle group during these sessions allows you to see quicker results. Lowering the weight with more repetitions will also help you to lean up.

EXCELLENT OFF SEASON WORK OUT

If you do the same training all the time, you’ll get bored. It is difficult to stay motivated when you’re constantly going through the rigours of the same, intense workout. Circuit training is a great way to maintain your fitness levels and overall health – and can also keep you in tip top shape when your sports season is over.

SESSIONS ARE FAST

High intensity circuit sessions are short and sharp, meaning you could complete a gruelling session in 40 minutes. Rest periods are short too, which helps you to push yourself and get the most out of your training. What you put in, you get out so make sure you give 100 per cent for the short window of time that you train.

REDUCE INJURY

Most training injuries come from overuse and circuits are a great way to prevent overuse without putting too much stress on the muscles. Making a comprehensive programme that uses all the muscles will help you to prevent injuries as your focusing on all muscle areas rather than neglecting certain groups.

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ITU World Triathlon Abu Dhabi, Wadi Adventure Race 15 and other UAE fitness events to look forward to in February and March

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Are you competing in any fitness events in February and March?

Here’s our top six to get involved in!

URBAN-ULTRA HAJAR 50 & 100

Friday, February 16

Challenge yourself on the beautiful ultra-trail 50km or 100km trail run through the mountain passes, along jeep tracks, through boulder ravines and over spectacular sand dunes of Ras Al Khaimah.

It is a tough challenge and requires training, but generous cut-off times (24hrs overall) allow most physically fit, determined and well-prepared runners to get to the finish.

START TIME: 6.45AM
MORE INFO: Urban-Ultra Hajar 50 & 100

BEACH RUN DXB
Friday, February 23

The Beach Run Series presented by Daman Activelife in association with Dubai Sports Council, returns to Dubai for its third edition and will take place at Sunset Public Beach.

The Beach Run series is an inclusive family-orientated event with 1.8km, 3.6km and 7.2km race distances to cater for runners of various abilities and fitness.

TIME: 8am
MORE INFO: Beach Run

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WADI ADVENTURE RACE
Saturday, February 24  

The popular Wadi Adventure Race returns this month where athletes will be pushed to the limits in a gruelling obstacle course.

Since its debut in 2012, the race has gone from strength to strength, and organisers are expecting another strong turnout this month for what will be the seventh edition overall.

Competitors will have to overcome a 10km obstacle course where they will crawl, run, carry, swim, swing and climb their way to the finish line.

There are six sections to choose from with categories in Elite, A, B, C, D and E, with each catered for different fitness levels and running abilities. For instance, Elite is for super fit while category E is for beginners.

TIME: From 8am
MORE INFO: Wadi Adventure Race

AL WATHBA DUATHLON
Friday, February 24

The second race of the three series will be held at the Al Wathba Cycle Park, bringing athletes of different disciplines onto the same playing field.

Whether you’re a cyclist, duathlete or triathlete, the race is suited to your abilities with a run/bike/run format.

Competitors can take part in either teams of two or solo and you can be in as many of the events as you want.

TIME: 7am
MORE INFO: Al Wathba Duathlon

ITU WORLD TRIATHLON ABU DHABI
Friday, March 3

The Abu Dhabi event features a superb field with some of the world’s top male and female triathletes confirmed for the fourth edition.

With a record-breaking five ITU World Championships to his name, Javier Gomez is a front runner for the title, but will face fierce competition from the Brownlee brothers who are intent on sealing the title in the capital.

Alongside the professional race, there are Sprint, Olympic and Maxi distance events for amateurs. This year also sees the introduction of the Junior Aquathlon, where young triathletes (some aged just five!) get their chance to compete.

The event is spectator-friendly and features a large grandstand to take in the spectacle, while refreshment kiosks make this venue the perfect family day out.

TIME: From 7am
MORE INFO: ITU World Triathlon Abu Dhabi

JEBEL HAFEET CHALLENGE
Friday, March 23  

Test your endurance and mental strength with an epic 12.5km run up the iconic Jabel Hafeet in Al Ain.

For those who want a real challenge, you have the option to run back down also, bringing the total distance to 25km.

TIME: From 6am
MORE INFO: Jebel Hafeet Challenge

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