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We all are aware that exercise has many physical and mental benefits. Participating in regular exercise improves our energy levels and decreases risks of illnesses. Even though we are constantly reminded of it’s benefits, there are some days when we’d much rather stay under the covers than attend a sweaty spin class. However, working out has other benefits that involve doing just that. Here’s something that your doctor isn’t telling you; exercise can improve your sex life.
Let’s think about it. Sweating, grunting and aching the morning after, are similar aspects circling exercise and your sex life. In fact, a number of studies have shown that there is a positive correlation (silent cheer) between regular exercise and performance in the bedroom. Have your favourite NEUapparel leggings at the ready, because the gym is about to get a lot sexier with 5 ways working out can improve your sex life.
(Laura Amy wears the Venus Safari Leggings)
Just like most physical activities, being fit and healthy will enhance your overall performance. Exercising regularly can help improve stamina, strength, balance and physical endurance. It’s also an energy boost, meaning your performance in the bedroom will feel more energetic and ultimately lead to a better sex life.
Makes You Stronger
Working on your strength not only means you are burning more calories, reducing risks of injuries and improving your body composition, but it also allows you to have better posture. Weightlifting is favourable when it comes to improving your sex life, feeling strong in the gym can improve your strength holding different positions. Mark Stibich, behaviour change expert, says, "Sex itself is an intense physical activity requiring strength and endurance. As you exercise, both your strength and endurance will increase, opening the possibility for more varied sexual positions that require greater physical control". It’s true, strong is the new sexy but over training can have the opposite effect by lowering testosterone levels.
Helps You Orgasm
Research has found that women who are physically active report greater sexual desire and arousal than women who don’t exercise. Cardiovascular exercise helps pump blood around your body faster, and when you feel excited, blood surges into the clitoral bulbs, making the entire region around the vagina responsive to pleasure. This means those who participate in exercise regularly experience orgasms quickly and intensely.
Lifts Your Mood
As well as physical interest, exercise has benefits that can improve mental health and well-being. For example, working out can help to de-stress, relax, clear thoughts and boost mood. Physical activity helps bump up the production of your brain's feel-good neurotransmitters, called endorphins. Although this action is often referred to as a runner's high, sexual intercourse can contribute to this same feeling. Exercise benefits can ease your stress levels and give you a sense of command over your body and sex life.
Lastly, but most importantly, working out helps to keep you in good shape and those who exercise are more likely to have a better body image towards themselves than those who don’t. Feeling good about yourself plays a massive part in sex. It’s important to be comfortable with your body, in fact Mark says, “Being more comfortable with your body leads to better and more relaxed sex.” Furthermore, exercise releases endorphins that correspond confidence, leading surprising benefits in the bedroom.
(Bella Golden in the Itsy Bitsy Kini in Black)
Written by Molly Thorne
Walking into the office on Thursday with a Costa coffee in one hand and my Oyster card in the other, I was delighted to find a parcel on my desk. The dusky pink packaging complete with ‘Be Your Own Girl Crush’ emblazoned across it caught my tired eyes immediately, and it’s safe to say they lit up there and then. I was just disappointed I’d have to wait until I was back home to try them on, but it was worth the wait.
When it comes to buying activewear, I’m not the easiest person to impress - finding clothes for the gym that tick all the boxes can be difficult. Picking up something that looks good and feels even better is no mean feat – so I was happy (gym) bunny when I tried my NEUapparel sports bra and leggings for the first time.
It was only when I pulled the ‘Earn Your Stripes’ leggings on that I really realised how comfortable they really were (I ended up spending the rest of the evening wearing them around my apartment because I couldn’t bring myself to take them off, sorry not sorry). However, you’ll be pleased to know that I did wear them to the gym as well. The high-rise waistband works wonders and doesn’t fall when working out, and lettering printed along the back of my calves is high quality and makes for a bold first impression. As for the sports bra – where to start? With four, thick black straps, I was spoiled for choice when it came to how I actually wanted to wear the multiway ‘Empowerment Black Crossover Bra.’ Ahead of my gym session, I arranged them to cross over on my back and opted for an off-the-shoulder top that showed the perfectly placed straps. I’m a size 10 and I ordered a medium - it fits perfectly. It’s not tight enough to leave marks on my skin, but still enough to give me the support I need when running (or at least trying to) on the treadmill. I also love the gold lettering on the front label which makes for pretty detail.
My overall verdict? Both the leggings and the sports bra are comfortable and easy to wear. I feel secure when working out, and I’m not worried about the material being see-through when I’m doing squats or deadlifting (a major bonus). In all honesty, I’m not always the most confident person when it comes to working out in a crowded gym, so wearing pieces that both look and feel good have had a real impact on me and I’m ready to train, regardless of how busy the cardio area is. I think this means I’m earning stripes of my own.
I knew I loved it just by looking at it on the website to be honest so it was only a matter of conﬁrmation with this set. You know when you get almost business like when buying your ﬁtness wear that you almost 100% KNOW wether they’ll be a hit or miss? Well I’m that girl now and trust me when I say I deﬁnitely wasn’t wrong on this one! French postal services were an absolute mess (as per usual) and made my delivery so delayed I couldn’t even bring them with me to Greece which is a damn shame coz you know, the Gram’ needs what it needs and my poorly lit living room doesn’t compare to a Greek island *insert crying emoji*
Anyways, here I am, all tanned and with beautifully sun kissed hair (thanks sun! #DontForgetYourSPF50Tho), ripping through the bag to get to my precious (you read that in HIS VOICE didn’t you?!) and falling in love at ﬁrst touch of the fabric. To say its jersey soft would feel way to bland and not accurate at all, i’d say looking at it you would except a cottony feeling but its so much softer to the touch its almost buttery which is a gift from the gods because nobody is into itchy, non-baby-bum-soft like leggings AMIRITE?!
I’m a UK 8 (I think? Pardon my frenchness I Beg ya) and I’d say the sizing on these ‘Get it Girl’ high waist leggings is a bit smaller than what Im used to but nothing i personally couldn’t work with and honestly it ﬁts so smoothly around the legs and bumbum that I kept it for a while before putting my Pjs on! As for the ‘DOUBLE UP GREY COTTON MESH BRALETTE’ I paired it with, lets just say it how it is : ACTUAL PERFECTION! The ﬁt is just right, the straps adjustable and that peachy mesh colored bit gives this whole look the vavavoom effect we all love without looking like we even tried #TotalWin. Regarding support, I would advise my girls with heavier tatas to go for another piece maybe though.
So here I am, after a night of being shamelessly ogled by my husband (he’s been converted to NEU FOR SURE!) I took it off and placed it right where I could see it so I’d wake up and put it on ﬁrst thing in the morning for upper body day. And so I did, this morning. I was a bit scared the leggings would be see through while doing my barbell rows but nope, everything stayed under cover and the waist didn’t bulge one bit.
What I can conﬁrm though is the number of times I gave away Neu’s Instagram handle! (ps : I am NOT paid to say this. I was literally SHOOK.) Would I recommend it? You’ve guessed it by now : HELL YES! And then some! Now all I can say is I can’t wait to get my hands on more and get my ﬁtness gear ready for summer! Sweat spots wise -because I know you’re thinking about it- as the big phat sweaty mess I am, I did see some on the underboob area and a bit behind the legs but you know what? I’ve never ever been bothered by it! I actually feel great pride at sweating like a boss lady working on my gainz and don’t feel the slightest bit of shame at it being visible *dramatic sweaty hair ﬂip*. BUT if unlike me you are concerned about it, then I’d say keep this particular set for LISS days, hikes and the likes. I’d also say it’s actually perfect as the most stylish athleisure look for those rest days where the only action of the day is coffee with a friend! Pair it with the ‘GET IT GIRL OVERSIZED MARL GREY SWEATSHIRT’ and either white or dusty pink sneakers (In my picture I’m wearing Adidas NMD’s with it and its just too good to pass on) and you’ve got yourself a hella gorgeous and effortless monochrome look.
Don't hesitate to @ me on Instagram ( @miss_mands) if you want further details or anything really.
The more the merrier! Xx Mandy.
Would you say you’re body confident? I don’t know how many women would.
To be happy with your appearance takes a certain degree of strength. We are bombarded with standards of beauty that many of us don’t fit and that many of us physically can’t fit. I will never look like a Victoria’s Secret model because whilst I can lose weight, losing bone from my hips is slightly more difficult. Similarly, I will never be the tiny, cute one of my friendship group because at five foot five, I’m taller than most of my friends. My tiny, cute friends don’t like being so small though – they want longer legs. None of us are content.
It’s hard to be satisfied with yourself when you see things in others that you like more – longer legs, toned arms, a flat stomach. That’s where you need to remember that's someone else’s best feature doesn’t make yours any worse.To be happy with your appearance is to define your worth on your own terms. It takes a lot to stand up and say ‘I am beautiful. I am strong. I am my own girl crush.’
How empowering would it be to be your own motivation? To aspire to look like your best self, rather than someone that you see on Instagram. It is to take society’s definitions of beauty and to stamp
Take that empowered sense of self, that confidence that you have found and use it to help others feel the same. Girls for girls. Let’s help each other grow. You never need to unscrew another woman’s lightbulb in order to shine. Feeling that someone else is prettier than you doesn’t mean you have to find something about yourself that is better than them. ‘She’s
pretty but she’s got fat legs.’ We don’t need to hear that and you don’t need to think it either. Female empowerment is about collaboration, not a competition and if there is anything we can learn from Mean Girls, it’s that ‘calling someone fat won’t make you skinny’ and tearing someone down definitely won’t build you up.
When payday comes around, we tell ourselves and others to ‘treat yourself’. We’re talking about a night out, a new bag or a new pair of shoes but why don’t we treat ourselves everyday? Treat ourselves more kindly. Tell ourselves how much we are worth. If we were to reward ourselves with positive affirmations and phrases to inspire confidence and empowerment, the world would be full of far happier women. Speak to yourself like you speak to other girls when you’re drunk in the bathroom and I guarantee you will feel a million times more confident.
This is why body confidence is a form of female empowerment – a movement that is on course for world domination and rightly so.
Females all over the world are refusing to be the ‘weaker sex’, physically and mentally. The weights section of the gym is no longer solely male; female CEOs are on the rise and we are slowly but surely refusing to be confined by masculine definitions of beauty.
Historically, women have been subjected, objectified and commodified by men. We have been taught to aspire to marriage but little more, to work on our appearance so that it satisfies men, to train our minds to say the right thing, to refine ourselves practically into submission.
Our worth has been defined by our relationship status, our appearance, our ability to cook, sew and clean. It’s a NEU time now. Now is the time to be empowered and to be your own girl crush. It’s time to know your worth and then add tax. It’s not all about getting a man. We’ve got bigger things to deal with.
Girls, it’s time to be strong. It’s time to be fierce. It’s time to be unashamedly you.
Written by Kirsty Spencer
It has been about four years since I embarked on a journey to take care of my body. Unfortunately, the learning process, as it is with everything, is slow. It is a shame that even though I’ve been in this journey for a long time it was recently when I actually considered myself on track. I was, finally, looking for results not just an easy way into what I wanted. I set out the goals I wanted to achieve; results that would not only help me reach these goals but maintain me in a healthy mindset and would stick with me as a lifestyle.
When I first started laying out what I wanted and how I wanted to pursue new challenges for me to achieve it, I had heard a lot about cycling classes, so I thought I’d give them a try. My first 55 minute HIIT class was a heavy, hard-on challenge that I thought I wouldn’t be able to overcome even past the first 20 minutes. I could’ve easily walked out but, I’m very proud to say that I powered through. Just like all those 27 people in that class with me. I was very inspired by the instructor, she kept making us do our maximum effort, telling us that we don’t give ourselves the recognition we should because we are truly more powerful than we think we are. Also, I was inspired by all the people around me who kept going, and in those intervals it didn’t really matter what everyone was fighting for, but that we were doing it, we were powering through.
And that was the moment when I understood what empowerment should be and what it felt like for me. It was understanding that it is not easy, so you must gather all the power within yourself so you can get through.
I started understanding the real meaning of women empowerment, being among these amazing people. Most of them were girls and a one or two guys. The uplifting of our gender doesn't need to be considered a discrimination to any other gender, it should be something done with respect for everyone and knowledge of women’s rights and social history. This is something that needs to be heard and promoted, it should be implanted like a small seed in everyone’s brain. Our differences - in our genders - should be acknowledged and celebrated because we can do what we set our minds to, it shouldn’t limit ourselves. And learning this, made me happy. I could finally say that within everything that I was doing to reach my goals I was - and am - truly happy.
Throughout this workouts, I began to comprehend that I shouldn’t be doing things for other people, that I cannot keep comparing myself because I am in my own journey. That the most important things need to be done when nobody else is watching, because that is what you should focus on, building rapport for yourself, understanding your body and guiding it towards the results you are looking for. Not believing that you can probably do it, but that you can. I am strong and you are too, we are in a constant uplifting battle where we can get to the top, only if we power through.
Over the course of 2017 into 2018 I have been able to interview a variety of different women for my blog, Word of Mouth. All of my interviewees have been women, this was not something I did on purpose nor did I plan the content to be that way, it just happened. Want to know why? It is because when I was coming up with ideas for interesting content I found that my biggest inspirers are female.
I have found such strength and confidence in women across the United States from a variety of different content areas; from fitness, to health and wellness, to photography, and travel. Recently I was able to interview a woman who is a fitness coach and bikini competitor in San Diego, California. Her name is Dominique Meyers! Her & her husband have a fitness program that people enroll in to get their personalized coaching for training as well as eating.
I was lucky to get some great tips and even dive into some of her motivation for staying confident throughout her training process.
Check it out:
Q: What made you decide to commit to your fitness lifestyle?
A: After college I was in a really low place with my health. I felt defeated and it had got to the point where enough was enough and I knew I had to make a change. Before that point I had tried a number of different diet and "quick fixes" and nothing was working. Once I accepted that it would take time and work, I made the decision to make a lifestyle change that would be sustainable and in a healthy way.
Q: Have you personally struggled with the progress of your physique?
A: YES!!! This is something that I struggle with every single day. Whether it was when I was at the lowest point with my health or when I was at my "fittest", I thought I should be better and I just wasn't ever good enough.
Q: How did you overcome that?
A: Honestly it's something I'm still challenged with, it's an ongoing process and journey that I'm learning to love. There was a book I read that really helped me out called "You Are a Badass" by Jen Sincero that helped fill my mind with thoughts and ideas that would empower me. Also, sharing my journey and doing my best to inspire others through my social media posts each day reminds me of those very principles and helps me.
Q: When do you feel your best?
A: When I'm able to find the balance between working out & eating healthy while still enjoying life and eating yummy foods.
I love that her confidence stems from balance in her life! It isn’t a number on the scale or an outfit that looked good! I have struggled with feeling my best while also finding balance but I think she is totally right and once you find it, it’s important that you stick with it!
Q: What advice would you give to people (women in particular) struggling with their overall health?
A: Stop looking for quick fixes and shortcuts. It's not easy and isn't supposed to be. It's going to take work but it's worth it. Remember that you don't have to give up all fun and good fun to enjoy a healthy lifestyle; you can have both when you embrace the 80/20 Rule. Everyone has a starting point and it's important to NEVER compare yourself to others because this is your journey and no one else's.
Q: How important is confidence and mental health when it comes to your training?
A: 100 percent for both my training and coaching. It all starts with mindset and having the right attitude. You can have the best plan to follow or Coach to look up to, but if you aren't ready, willing, and committed to it then you won't follow through.
Q: Do you think everyone is capable of building a body they’re confident in?
A: Absolutely. Before I started my journey, I never thought that was possible until my mindset about it all changed. What has helped me out is realizing that there's no "one-size-fits-all" when it comes to your health. Being healthy and confident means something different for every single person so figure out what that is for you and then work on building the habits that will lead you to that goal.
I have been really inspired this past month from people I have met & interviewed to recently celebrating International Women’s Day. I feel so lucky to have found & followed some amazing women through social media! Especially with Dom! Her captions & daily Instagram stories get people excited about health and wellness; As well as overall confidence - especially for women. When I was brainstorming new people to interview she immediately came to mind and honestly I don't know why I didn't think of it sooner! I loved the answers she provided because I know people struggle with their fitness journey all the time! I myself have been working on building sustainable habits, which is why I'm so glad she mentioned that (maybe i'm doing something right! hehe). It also helped me to see that she has struggled with her physique & not everyone is perfect! It makes you feel like you're not alone. When you see so many fitness influencers it looks like they have it together every single second; that isn't always the case. It’s important to gain a real and healthy perspective for what goes into overall health and wellness. It all starts with a positive mindset and fearless attitude.
After that, the sky is the limit – especially for us women.
You’ve seen her on Instagram and even on YouTube! The lovely Janelle Mughannam, who goes by Coco Janelle on social media, has given me amazing tips on how to achieve greatness in the realm of health and fitness!
Now one might think that that in order to achieve the body of your dreams one must just work out… but that’s where you are wrong my friend! Coco says that in order to achieve your fitness goals, one must first change their mindset!!
Coco advices that women should stop having an idealized perception of what they think they should look like, but first appreciate what they have, stop comparing themselves to other women, and really for a positive relationship with their body image. She enforces to really mentally preparing yourself for the journey of health that is going to be embarked because in order to strengthen your body, you MUST strengthen your mind.
Coco also elaborates the importance of consistency! It took her about 2-3 years to see results she was truly happy with! Now I know what you’re thinking, “THAT A LONG TIME!” However, think of it this way, those 2/3 years passed, and Coco could have not worked out and stuck to her regimen and be disappointed in her lack of result BUT… stuck with her healthy lifestyle and is extremely happy with her results! In fact, her favorite quote is “A year from now you will wish you started today.” Nevertheless, it wasn’t easy! Which leads into her next tip: NEVER GIVE UP!
Photo origin- @cocojanelle_
Coco comes from a family that prides themselves on leading a very healthy lifestyle. So when she went off to her first year of college and then came back 20 pounds heavier, it was a shock to her mother. Coco said that eating carelessly and drinking alcohol led her to gain the 20 pounds. Nevertheless, as soon as she got back home, with the support of her family, she started leading a healthy lifestyle. It was not easy though. There were days she did not feel like working out. There were moments where she would have rather stayed in bed. BUT …she knew that giving in and giving up was not the answer. Now 2-3 years later she is more than happy with her body!
Now for Coco its more than looking good, it is about feeling good as well. In a society that focuses so much on looks, Coco is making it her mission to empower women to love themselves as they are, while trying to become their best selves. I like to say she’s kind of like the new age Oprah for health and fitness!Written by Maryam Ramadhan