Your stay-at-home workout plan: A HIIT-style cardio session

‘High knees’ is essentially running as fast as you can on the spot. (Shutterstock)
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Updated 30 March 2020

Your stay-at-home workout plan: A HIIT-style cardio session

DUBAI: Since the coronavirus pandemic forced the closure of gyms across the UAE and Saudi Arabia, at-home training may be the only option for many. Here, Devinder Bains, personal trainer and nutrition coach at Fit Squad DXB, shares a variety of workouts to keep you active and she’s kicking things off with a HIIT-style cardio session. 

Warm up

Head into the garden or make space indoors. Start by bending forward to touch your toes (bend knees as needed) and then reach up high with your arms above your head — repeat these toe touches ten times at a gentle pace. Next, we’ll move on to side steps: Stand with your arms out to the side and step from side to side, take twenty lateral steps in total. Repeat both exercises another three times, increasing the pace each round until you feel your heart rate starting to quicken. 


Now you’re nice and warm, it’s time to take things up a notch. For this next part you’ll need the stopwatch on your phone, carrying out each of the exercises below for 40 seconds followed by a 20 second rest, doing each exercise a total of ten times. 

Exercise 1: High knees


This is essentially running as fast as you can on the spot while bringing the knees as high up to the chest as possible. Use your arms to drive the speed and increase the intensity. 

Exercise 2: Star jumps


Start with legs just further than shoulder width apart and arms stretched laterally out to sides, then jump to bring the feet together and at the same time lift the arms so your hands meet above your head, jump back to the start position to complete one star jump.

Exercise 3: Mountain climbers


Start in a full plank position with your hands and feet on the floor. Lift your right foot off the floor and bring the knee to the chest then return to start position and do the same on the left side. Continue alternating the legs and increasing speed as needed but make sure the back stays as flat as possible throughout.

Consult your doctor before starting any new or strenuous exercise plan or workout with a personal trainer to make sure your technique is correct at all times

Missing your salon? How to care for your hair while you #StayHome

We speak to a hair expert on the dos and don’ts of at-home hair care. (File/Instagram)
Updated 30 March 2020

Missing your salon? How to care for your hair while you #StayHome

DUBAI: As salon-goers face the closure of spas, salons and barbershops, we speak to Haneen Odeh, founder of UAE’s Snob salon for her take on the dos and don’ts of at-home hair care.

Many men and women who rely on salon visits to keep their lengths healthy could be left wondering what to do between now and their next visit to a professional hair stylist. But just as important is what not to do (read: DIY trim job) to avoid ruining your hair and having to impose your own personal period of self-isolation once the pandemic is over due to a ruined haircut you tried to pull off in the bathroom mirror.

Don’t bleach your own hair
“For those who usually go to the salon to dye their lengths blonde, roots may be starting to show now. And while it might be tempting, I would strongly urge to not bleach your own roots. Lightening dark hair is a very complex multi-step process that requires years of experience and professional grade products only available at salons. Bleaching your hair incorrectly might result in burning and damaging your hair. Instead, opt for a root spray such as the L'Oreal Paris Magic Root Cover Up Concealer Spray. Otherwise, you can always conceal your dark roots with a headband or try wrapping your hair up with a scarf.” 

Do deep conditioning treatments
“Use this time to nourish your hair with a deep conditioning treatment. A lot of people simply apply it in the shower on wet hair for a few minutes and call it a day, but that way means that your lengths aren’t getting the full benefits of the product. Think of hair like a sponge, when it’s wet, it’s already full of water and cannot absorb anything more. So to make sure the product is fully absorbed into your locks, towel dry your hair after shampooing and then apply the treatment. Leave it on for 15-20 minutes and then rinse. You’ll see a huge difference.” May we suggest The Let It Go Circle hair mask from Davines, which is designed to boost hydration and revitalize dry and brittle strands?  

Don’t pick up the scissors
“When you’re bored, it might be tempting to pick up the scissors but, and I can’t stress this enough, don’t trim your own bangs or make any big changes to your hair cut on your own. It will inevitably go wrong and you will end up paying more to get it fixed in the long run. Try out some new hairstyles instead. There are plenty of tutorials on YouTube so experiment a little and get your hair professionally cut once it’s safe to do so.”

 Don’t over wash
“The more you wash your strands, the more you strip the scalp of its natural oils, and that in turn makes the scalp produce even more oil, which causes you to wash your hair more often — and the cycle goes on and on. Now is the perfect opportunity to give your lengths a break and cut down on the washing. Your hair might get oily, but once the adjustment period is over, you will notice that it will require less frequent washing.”

Do try scalp treatments
“Too often, we pay attention to the lengths of our hair and give our scalp no attention. But caring for your scalp improves the overall health of your tresses, stimulates hair growth and gets rid of dandruff due to product buildup. Scalp treatments range from serums to salt scrubs, so pick a product that suits your hair needs. Le Labo's basil-scented Scrub Shampoo uses black sea salt and menthol to clear away dirt and cool scalps down.”