London

WIN! Speedo H2O Active Swimwear Range

Swimming. It’s not really my thing. I nearly drowned when I was younger and have been scared of the deep end ever since. In fact even the shallow end makes my knees knock. So when Speedo asked me to travel to Majorca and try their new H2OActive range it wasn’t a decision I wanted to dive into.  But after some deliberation I decided to take the plunge and confront my fears as every expert starts as a beginner and you have to start somewhere!  That, and the fact it was in sunny Majorca.  If it had been a coach trip to Margate Lido I don’t think I’d be starting at all.

Speedo H2O Active

On shoot I learnt lots about the benefits of working out in the water and how adding it could really compliment my current routine. It works muscles I never even knew I had! Moving some of my favourite HIIT moves into the water meant I burned just as many calories (possibly more because of the resistance) as on land but with the added bonus of reducing the risk of injury and not looking like a sweaty mess.

Speedo Photoshoot

Since then I have been learning week by week to swim and I’m making great progress but the progress wouldn’t have been as quick if it wasn’t with the help of a few friends.  I’m having 1-to-1 lessons with Swim For Tri, attending group swim clubs (Swim Dem Crew is my fave) and partaking in Aquaphysical Float Fit Class for strengthening exercises on top of the water.

Aquaphysical Float Class

Practising in a group is great as I’m still a little nervous to go swimming alone.  I’d feel like I’d want to make sure the life guard was looking at me the whole time- nudge nudge.  It’s also fun to hang out with new faces week in and week out to discover that I’m not the only adult who swims like a seal trying to breakdance .

Speedo Fit With Friends

I have been practising my strokes wearing the new Speedo H2O Active range and it’s great for a number of reasons

1. It's Vibrant & VERSATILE 

Style and function belong together and so with the multiple back strap details, H2O Active range is supportive enough for you to workout both in and out of water. It’s bright, bold, mix and match range can be paired to match your mood and your workout. 

Speedo H2O Active Bra
AJ Odudu Speedo

2. It’s eco friendly

Thanks to the partnership between Speedo and Aquafil, it is now possible for the fabric to include 78% ECONYL yarn, a nylon fibre made from regenerated plastics including abandoned fishing nets that might otherwise harm animals in the ocean.

Eco Friendly H2O Active range

Figures show that 20% of global waste comes from the textile and clothing industry, and with Speedo’s help there has been a 21% increase in recycled, non-hazardous waste. The fabric is durable, lasting twice as long as standard swimwear, is  resistant to chlorine, suncream, oils and holds it's shape well too, making it perfect for multi fitness needs. 

Side Plank

3. You Can BE BODY CONFIDENT

With cropped leggings, high necklines and a range that you can layer, H2O Active is a range fit for any shape or size. It's even good for nervous swimmers like me.

Aquaphysical Floatfit Class
Speedo Mix & Match Range

 

WIN!

Partnering with Speedo has really sparked a new and enjoyable thirst for learning and so I want to give you the opportunity to win a Speedo fit kit of your choice from the brand new H2o Active range (pictured below), to hopefully encourage you to workout by and in the pool too.

Speedo H20 Active SS2 Range

All you have to do is comment below for your chance to win. Give me a comment on Instagram too and let's connect. Winner will be announced on Monday 22nd May. Good luck!

Speedo H2O S2 Collection

XOXO

What I'm Wearing: Speedo Swimsuit, leggings, bikini and long-sleeve top

This blog post is brought to you in collaboration with Speedo

The London Marathon 2017 | Race Day Tips and Nervous Energy

Tomorrow, at 10am, I’m running the London Marathon. I genuinely thought at this point I’d be casually soaking myself in a nice hot bath and stuffing my face with a bag of spuds. Instead I woke up after 4 hours sleep, feeling overwhelming tired (naturally), nervous and teary.

London Marathon 2017 adidas

I've had recurring bad dreams where I am not allowed to run because I've lost my race number. That no one’s there to cheer me on and that Banana Man tripped me up! I'm asking myself how will I cope with massive highs and crashing lows, how will I tell myself to carry on when the voice on my shoulder is telling me to stop and why on Earth did I ever volunteer to do such a thing?! If you are feeling the same, it’s time to block out the negative voices, trust in the training you have done and realise that Banana Man doesn’t actually exist.

London Marathon 2017 Training

My friend James advised me “don’t let your head undo all your hard work”, Adrienne tells me “relax and put one foot in front of the other, the same way we always have”, Hayley says “see it as another long training run” and Alice says, “I’ll see you on the finish line with a big bottle of gin!” Even though my friends pearls of wisdom hasn’t completely stopped the butterflies, thankfully, they are calming me down.

AJ Odudu London Marathon

All in all, training for my first marathon has definitely been a mixed bag.  Though I’m sure once I cross that finish line and stop to reflect on the hard work I’ve put in, holding a champagne flute in one hand and my medal in the other, I’ll look at that same bag as nothing but a bag of goodies. So for the rest of the day I vow to only be concerned about the things I can take full control of. Let’s do this together!

London Marathon Race Day Tips

Plan Your Race Day Travel To Start

Get to the race in good time to drop your bag off, have multiple nervous trips to the loo and find your race pen.

  • Red numbers start at Greenwich or Maze Hill

  • Green at Maze Hill

  • Blue at Blackheath

Bag drop closes at 9:30am sharp and the only bag you're able to leave is the clear bag you were given your race number in.

Greenwich Park London Marathon 2017

Race Day Outfit

Tomorrow is not the day to try new things that may cause discomfort. Wear what you've been training in or that you have ran in comfortably before.

Take a layer of outerwear that you're happy to dispose of just before you race. This will be collected and given to charity.

white adidas boost

What To Eat

Hydrate by drinking 350-500ml of liquid 3- 4 hours before race time and then 250ml 45 mins before.

Eat a high carb breakfast 3-4 hours before. This could be porridge with milk and a banana or toast, honey and yoghurt or eggs on toast. Whatever you're used to eating before a long run.

1 hour before start have a carb rich snack such as a banana, or a bar or gel. As long as you're used to eating it.

RUN!

In the wise words of my friend Adrienne, move forward and do what we’ve been doing for yonks. Let’s go!

Millennium Wheel London Marathon 2017

Tell yourself you are ready you can do this and that the nervous energy you feel really is excitement...in disguise.

If you want to track my run download the official 2017 Virgin Money London Marathon app or cheer me on from the side lines. My race number is 56471. You can also follow my Instagram Story along the way @AJOdudu


Good luck to everyone running tomorrow and see you there!

XOXO

Ministry Does Fitness with Primark

Ministry Of Sound in London with it's epic club nights has been making people move since the 90s.  Now it has upped the action with the launch of a new slick gym space called, (no not Ministry Of Fit) Ministry Does Fitness. It has a variety of strength, cardio and yoga classes, a banging playlist (naturally) and a bar that offers a lot more than just protein shakes.

Skinny Prosecco

I took to The Arches to experience it's Ministry Of Sweat to test out the new Primark fit kit which is summery, pretty, affordable and, as I thoroughly road tested, can handle sweat in its stride.  Exercising has become the new clubbing for fitness enthusiasts like me, if only there were more bachelors to buy my Lucozades.

Primark Fitness Clothing

During the strengthening circuit class my Primark fit kit passed a few of my all important tests: the supportive test; my sports bra fit correctly and my little bumps stayed put.

Ministry Does Fitness
Bear Crawls Primark

The squat test; leggings didn't fall down when I was bear crawling, squatting and running so my underwear stayed well and truly, underwear.

And the stretch test: comfortable to wear and flex in.

Shoulder stretch Primark

Great class, nice clothing and fun with all my mates. Who fancies a gym and tonic?

XOXO

Where: The Arches, Ministry Does Fitness, Arches 80 and 81, Newington Court, SE1 6DD (Near Elephant & Castle Underground Station).

How Much: £14 a class but they also have package deals 

What I’m Wearing: Primark bra (£6), Primark jacket (£10) &  leggings (£7)

This blog post was brought to you in collaboration with Primark | #PrimarkSetGo

 

Paul & Joe Striped Suit

AJ Odudu

Not one to blend into the background, I thought I'd step out to DJ in London at the Instyle Magazine Project 13 Party, wearing the most stripes and colours possible. 

Paul & Joe Striped Suit

I paired my 70's style Paul & Joe suit with New Look boots and Roderick Vere Sterling Silver letter pressed necklace.

Striped Suit Paul & Joe

And I even stuck some marble print nail art to my finger tips purchased from Primark.

70's Suit

Catch up on all the fun by clicking here or by following on Instagram and Twitter.

XOXO

Photographs by Patricia Mirembe Make up by Wande

InStyle Magazine DJ Playlist

What a week! One minute I’m running around with the Brownlee Brothers, trying my very hardest to keep up with them, the next minute I’m DJing from the most Instagrammable venue in London, Lights Of Soho, playing tunes for Instyle Magazine's Project 13 Awards after party. Now that I've had a moment to catch my breath, let's have a chat.

Instyle UK Magazine Party DJ

Celebrating online writers and bloggers, Instyle Magazine's Project 13 is in it's second year, enabling thousands of people to vote for their favourite blogger in a range of categories (from travel to food, craft to fitness) to win an award. Much to my surprise and delight, I won the award for Best Fitness & Wellbeing Blog. Thank you so much for voting!

Instyle Award

There was even more to celebrate as not only did I win an award but I was also DJ'ing at their after party and got the party into full swing playing a mix of RnB and pop tracks but the following seemed to be particularly popular on the night:

  • Lee Walker feat. Katy B - Freak Like Me
  •  KDA feat. Katy B + Tiny Tempah - turn the Music Louder
  •  George Kwali & Kideko feat. Nadia Rose - Crank It
  •  Eats Everything vs Audion - Dancing
  •  Stardust - Music Sounds Better
  •  Robin S - Show me Love never 
Music DJ London

It was a super fun night, celebrated behind the decks, with friends and a cocktail or few. You can read me gushing over how chuffed I am about being an award winning blogger and see the full list of Project 13 winners by clicking here. Plus, if you want details of my striped suit click here for outfit details.

AJ Odudu DJ

As always feel free to get in touch via Twitter and Instagram and let me know what tunes you like listening to?

XOXO

Instyle Magazine's Best Fitness & Wellbeing Blogger

Thrilled to announce that I won Instye Magazine's Best Fitness & Wellbeing Blog in the Project 13 Awards. I've not won an award since I was 8 years old (it was a Mars bar FYI) so a huge thank you to everyone who voted.

AJ Odudu Insyle Magazine

To me, winning is beginning and I'm so glad I started AJODUDU.COM, now an award winning site. EEK!

Instyle Project 13 Award Winner

I receive an actual trophy in London soon but in the meantime, here are images from the winners magazine photoshoot which was awesome. Shot in London by two of the most talented photographers around Luke + Nik, I got to jump around in a posh, red frock worth over a thousand pounds (which I of course had to give back to the stylist :)

Instyle Magazine AJ Odudu

These images were published in Instyle Magazine's final December print issue 2016 along with a lovely little interview.

Final Issue of Instyle Magazine
Luk + Nik

You can check out my online interview with Instyle magazine, where I share some realistic fitness motivation tips, gym wear hacks and confirmation that I do indeed, eat!

Thanks again for the votes.

XOXO

Photography by LUKE + NIK

Buddy Up: The Best Partner Workout

I'm delighted to announce that I have joined forces with Women's Health Magazine to share brand new fitness and wellbeing content as part of their #WHSquad. I will be featuring all kinds of tips and tricks to help you on your fitness journey, including fun exercises.

Tandem Bicycle Crunche

I know how tricky it can be to find motivation to workout so how about you grab a mate and train together? That way you can catch up on all the juicy gossip, work up a sweat and encourage one another at the same time. Bingo!

Try the six body weight exercises that I did with my friend Carly Rowena below. You'll need nothing but a partner. 

XOXO

Getting Intimate with Kit & Ace

Sometimes revealing it all in front of a person you don't know can be a nerve wracking experience, but with Kit & Ace it was a joy. Kit & Ace is a Canadian clothing brand best known for producing machine washable technical cashmere. Their pieces are simple yet beautiful and I had the pleasure of doing a shoot and interview for them. Interesting fact, the pool location we shot at is the same pool seen in the James Bond Skyfall movie. :) 

Anyway, we discussed everything from my job as a TV presenter (how I broke into the industry and combat nerves) to how I came to DJ right down to fitness fads that should be avoided and tips on how to maintain a high-energy, healthy lifestyle. Check out the full interview but in the meantime, here's a peak of the photos from the shoot. Hope you like them?

Photos by Jack Grayson

XOXO

 

 

Top 5 Winter Fit Tips

Winter makes most of us want to snuggle up in bed but sadly, hibernating isn't going to keep us fit. Here's how I exercise to beat the winter blues.

Nike Zip Top

1. Wrap Up Warm

I still enjoy outdoor workouts if I get the right fit kit. Lightweight windbreakers, thermal leggings and lightweight gloves that keep your paws warm without getting sweaty are the answer to all my workouts. There are even long sleeved tops that cover the palms of your hands if gloves aren't for you. 

Sit Ups

2. Workout At Home

I personally love going for a brisk winter run in the fresh, cold air but for those days when leaving the house is all too much, I stick on an exercise DVD or playlist a load of YouTube workout videos and do that for 30-60 mins 3 times a week. The benefit of exercising this way is that you can do it in the comfort of your own home. The difficulty with exercising this way is that it can always be put off until another day. I suggest scheduling it into your diary to reduce the chance of avoiding your work out. 

Outdoor winter workout

3. Get stretching

For a mood enhancing fix try yoga. It's not all about being flexible (thankfully). In fact, it helps to combat fatigue whilst strengthening your body. If (like me) you often find being in a silent room full of tree poses very dull, try a class that plays music while you flex or, if you really need an incentive to brave the cold weather, take up hot yoga. Either way, it's sure to increase your energy levels, realise some tension and strengthen and tone your entire body. Three cheers for Namaste!

Yoga

4. Make a music playlist

Let's face it, you need to be in the right frame of mind to workout. Playlist a bunch of songs that make you feel happy, strong and invincible and crank it up just before you workout. Beyonce's Run the World, M.I.A's Bring the Noize, Missy Elliot's Lose Control and the theme tune from Rocky- You're the Best NEVER fail me so...press play.

Workout Playlist

5. Workout with friends

Sign up to a workout class with a friend or few and turn it into a social event. After most of my workouts I often catch up with friends over a healthy smoothie, a post-workout protein shake or a healthy brunch. It's a great way to get fit, get chatting and eat food. What's not to love?!

AJ Odudu Fitness

So there you have it. My top tips to keep you training, even al fresco.

XOXO

Photographer: Niran Vinod

Best App To Keep You Fit & Healthy | Endomondo

Like many people, what I  expect from a personal trainer is quite a lot; tailored workouts, training plans, encouragement, support and of course results. But  all of that comes at a cost. That's why I was pleased to hear about the Endomondo app which promises all those things and more. But does it deliver? I put it to the test at the Energy Lab, London and here's what I found out.

Endomondo Founder

Getting started was easy. It took  just two minutes to download and sign up. The interface is clean and fairly straightforward. There's an enormous play button begging to be tapped and so I jumped into my running gear and gave it a whirl.

Running AJ Odudu

Before you start, the app allows you to set a goal (e.g. your first 5)k. Then it creates a plan to help you get there. It even gives you the option to make a commitment (a feature that let's you make a public declaration to achieving a goal) which is great for socialising or if you're akin to a bit of mild peer pressure. 

Endomondo App

During my run there were lots of notifications and words of encouragement and after the run there was a clear display of my statistics/results, with the option to share my activity on social media. Brilliant but there are loads of fitness apps on the market so what makes this one so unique? 

Rowing Machine

Well, for a start they have a long list of sports you can track and the calorie calculations adjust accordingly. "I wanted to make the app fun for all, regardless of their chosen sport or activity" says founder of Endomondo and former competitive horseback rider, Mette Lykke. "We're continually developing the app thanks to the daily feedback that we get from our 4 million users and I'm so inspired and motivated by their fitness journeys. This app has changed lives and will continue to do so." 

Spin class

There's also an  inbuilt audio coach that tells you how well you are doing while you're tracking and the GPS function not only tracks your regular running route but also introduces you to other routes  nearby that you may like to try, enabling you to keep your workouts varied and fun. 

Bike riding

To me however, the most impressive feature about this app is the fact that it has the ability to  consider all the factors that may affect your workout; from the weather to the altitude, duration to distance, this app even considers how hydrated you are when creating your results. What's more is that it's completely free of  charge with the option of upgrading to Premium at any time (which offers even more advanced statistics, interval training programs and is advert free).

So there you have it. One easy fitness app for the data loving, activity seeking people out there. Go forth and download. 

AJ

XOXO

Endomondo is FREE of charge.

Endomondo Premium is £3.99 per month OR £22.99 per year. 

Sign up to Endomondo by clicking here