I am just over four weeks into my recovery period after fracturing a metatarsal bone in my left foot and although I have been training well (no running yet) the race I’d set my sights on unfortunately just comes too soon.
It may well have been blind optimism on my part or simply the fact that I enjoy my training so much in Dubai that I still harboured ambitions of running on September 18.
Though, approaching this injury with a positive mindframe has sped up my recovery and up until now it has been relatively quick (*touches wood*).
The estimated full recovery time for an injury of this nature tends to be between six to eight weeks and it is not one to rush back from – ask Manchester United star Wayne Rooney or how fit David Beckham felt when he captained England at the 2002 World Cup.
Both stars paid the price after a premature return to action and that’s even with the pampered and intensive treatment footballers receive at the very highest level of the game.
Nevertheless, hopefully I will have the chance to run a race in South Africa in the near future as it’s definitely not a country short of historic running pedigree or great events to take part in.
Now, I’ll be able to start running again soon and reset new goals and targets for the rest of the year – with of course the UAE sporting season in mind.
And with that, I’m grateful for the opportunity to train at Talise Fitness, one of the best health and fitness gyms in Dubai, over the course of the next few months.
The facility is outstanding and the perfect partner to work on cardio health, core stability and all-round body strengthening as I look to get back to feeling 100 per cent.
Since last week I’ve been undertaking lots of endurance work on the exercise bike and cross-trainer as well as keeping my discipline with heavy stretching, foam roller exercises and set upper-body routines – working shoulders, triceps, biceps and deltoid muscles especially, in addition to swimming in Talise’s state-of-the-art indoor amenity.
The chance to receive workout advice and tips from on-duty personal trainers at the gym is a nice confidence booster, too.
I’m also really looking forward to the opportunity to try out Talise’s brand-new High Altitude Suite in the coming weeks when I’m in a better position to give it my all.
The High Altitude Suite/low oxygen chamber is the first-of-its-kind in the Middle East and can offer people a big overall health boost within a shorter timeframe.
I’ll be updating this blog entry next Sunday as I try out more of Talise’s facilities and range of classes.
Thanks for reading!
Most of us are short of time and want to get the most out of a workout in the quickest time possible. Compound exercises allow us to do just that.
This week I have taken three planks which are extremely effective even if you simply hold them, but layering various movements on top can tone you up from head to toe.
Adding a push up and raising a leg works the core, upper body and gluteal muscles (buttocks). Be sure to maintain pelvic and shoulder stability. This is very challenging so modify by resting your knees on a thick mat or folded towel. Always engage the core, pulling the navel to spine and breathe continuously.
Still working the upper body, the side plank works the obliques which wrap around the sides of your body which, together with the other torso muscles will improve posture and maintain spinal health. By adding the leg movements, you will also strengthen and tone the inner and outer thighs.
If you feel too much pressure in your wrist or shoulder, rest on your forearm. Test your level by lifting the lower leg. If your top leg and knee will support you, thread the needle by stretching your lower leg forward and back. The inner thigh of the top leg will be working very hard.
Again, either on your hand or forearm, raise the top leg. If you aren’t strong enough yet, rest on the lower knee and raise the top leg. You can circle the top leg, lift and lower, pulse at the top or stretch the leg forward and back. The outer thigh of the top leg will feel it.
Works the triceps, especially if you add a triceps dip. Also works the core to maintain stability of the pelvis and then the glutes of the supporting leg if you choose to the lift alternate legs. You can lift a straight leg and hold whilst dipping or just alternate. To modify, bend the knees and dip.
Sometimes city life can be unyielding. Living in the metropolis which is Dubai, it’s only natural that the fast-paced style of life can weigh heavy from time-to-time – especially in the scorching summer temperatures.
The same daily routine can wear you down as the cyclical nature of life robs us of the vitality to really get the most from it. It’s crucial, therefore, to occasionally put everything on pause, give yourself time to breathe and take a step away from it all.
You don’t need to leave the UAE to achieve this, though. Nestled in the foothills of the Hajar Mountains at Al Aqah is the picture-perfect escape: The Fujairah Rotana Resort & Spa.
Now, as someone who has scarcely explored the outer reaches of the UAE, it was difficult to grasp the idea of how a break outside of Dubai could surpass a location built on its five-star style tourism.
However, the recently spruced up Fujairah Rotana Resort & Spa, with its incredibly courteous staff and beach-side setting, immediately put you at ease, replacing wave after wave of work with just the overlapping sounds of the Indian Ocean.
We break down the key takeaways from a weekend stay at the resort.
Driving from Dubai to Fujairah seems like a little bit of trek with a glimpse at Google Maps but once you hit the roads, you’re soon charmed by the be the impressiveness of the rocky Hajar Mountains.
For someone who is atrocious with directions, the resort was easy enough to find the help of Maps and once there, you’re greeted by well mannered and considerate staff. In particular, Gabriel, the front office director, was extremely welcoming and despite a busy morning speaking to other customers, was always on hand to deal with any requests.
Spacious, comfortable and serene, everything is as you’d expect from a Rotana chain. The bathroom is well-designed with a generous amount of cupboard space. The view, though, was something else.
My room was situated right beside the beach and you could not have been any closer to the sandy shores. Almost all of the 250 rooms and suites offer a stunning backdrop of the Hajar Mountains.
And the ability to get up fresh and early in the morning, walk straight from the room to the private beach was a real pleasure.
The award-winning Zen the Spa, several water sport activities, snorkelling, a well-equipped gym and tennis courts are just some of the fantastic facilities on offer.
For someone like myself who likes to keep active to intersperse the periods of relaxation, the resort had all which was needed. Now, the obvious highlight was the spa. We’ve made use of Zen the Spa in previous hotels and for a feeling of wellbeing and mental repose there are few better.
With eight single treatment rooms, a couple’s room, one Serenity Suite with private entrance and one Thai massage room open from 09:00 to 21:00, the spa caters to all.
Since our stay, the hotel has made adjustments to further enhance the popular experience. The Thai massage I received came in handy having made use of the Bodylines Fitness & Wellness gym. In previous hotel stays, the gyms are ordinarily a letdown, so it was a pleasant surprise to see state-of-the-art equipment set just in front of the tennis courts.
There are six options when it comes to dining and beverages: the Waves Beach restaurant, Mozaique, Bar Muda, the Tropicana Pool Bar, the Al Falaj Lobby Cafe and finally the Sharkeys Bar.
Of course, there’s also 24-hour in-room dining, too. For our stay, Mozaique was our place for breakfast while the Tropicana Pool Bar and the Waves Beach restaurant served up the day’s remaining dishes.
The only downside was the international buffet which was a little light on options and uninteresting. However, the Waves Beach restaurant was delightful and again has since been given a make over since our visit. Watching the sunset over the Indian Ocean with freshly caught fish was a flawless combination.
What: The Fujairah Rotana Resort & Spa
Verdict: 8/10: The location was utterly serene with a variety of facilities on offer to keep you occupied. The staff were incredibly polite, the only slight negative being the breakfast.