Genetic blueprint for better health: How to take your fitness and wellness routines to the next level

It’s more effective to make fitness fun. Incorporate games or playful activities into your routine to keep yourself motivated and engaged. Picture: Jonathan Borba /Unsplash

It’s more effective to make fitness fun. Incorporate games or playful activities into your routine to keep yourself motivated and engaged. Picture: Jonathan Borba /Unsplash

Published Aug 15, 2023


It’s happening, the days are getting longer, temperatures are gradually rising and spring is on its way!

As we progress further into the year, it’s normal for those New Year Resolutions to become less of a priority for some – but don’t worry, there’s no shame, we’ve all been there.

It might still be cold outdoors, but as we enter the last few weeks of winter, now is the ideal time to kick-start your fitness regime. As the infamous saying goes, summer bodies are made in winter, and with spring just around the corner, it’s time to optimise your workout routine with some clever tips.

Who doesn’t love having fun? If you’re new to fitness, focus on activities that you already enjoy or have an interest in.

Join a group sport, challenge your friends to a workout competition, try a dance class, or play a game of padel. By doing things that bring you joy, you’ll be more likely to stick with it.

According to South African fitness expert Arnold Vosloo, there’s a growing trend in the fitness industry “gamified fitness”, which includes video game-like elements into your routine.

There are various gamified fitness platforms or apps available online. These programs involve components such as earning points rewards and leaderboards to compete with friends.

He suggests that instead of diving head-first into intense and strict workout regimens, it’s more effective to make fitness fun. Incorporate games or playful activities into your routine to keep yourself motivated and engaged.

The gamified fitness platforms and apps available online have revolutionised and taken the boring out of workouts.

“These programs let you earn points, unlock rewards, and compete with your friends on leaderboards,” explained Vosloo.

What was once an underground interest in the early 2000s is now one of the biggest wellness trends of the last few years.

In simple terms, biohacking is a DIY biology approach to optimising health and performance. While the term may sound extreme, many people have already done some form of biohacking before – like intermittent fasts or meditations.

Biohacking encompasses various aspects, including the fascinating field of nutrigenomics. Nutrigenomics focuses on the connection between the food we eat and our body’s genetic needs.

By understanding nutrigenomics, we can unlock the potential for better health through specific foods that offer nutritional benefits.

One way to delve into this realm is through a personalised DNA test, which can provide insights into your genetic blueprint and guide you on what and how much of certain foods you should be consuming.

“Of course, not everyone will want to go to the extremes of a DNA test or have an interest in the science of nutrigenomics, but many of us can agree that finding ways of boosting our nutrition is vital,” the former rugby player said.

He added: “One way in which I ensure I am getting enough vitamins and minerals is by adding microgreens into my daily diet. Microgreens are a delicious and affordable source of vitamins C, E, and A, minerals like copper and zinc and phytochemicals.

“I personally use MicroThumbs’ pea shoot powder in my daily smoothies, but you could use their microgreens pesto in various ways like in pasta or sandwiches. Or grab a punnet of greens at your local grocery store and top your meals with them.

“I recommend eating microgreens because they contain up to 40 times more nutrients than their mature vegetable counterparts, and aside from the health benefits, microgreens can enhance the flavour of so many dishes,” Vosloo added.

Workout like an expert

Seasoned gym-goers may have their set routines, but if you're a fitness newbie craving extraordinary results, the former Golden Lions player has a game-changing suggestion for you.

Instead of isolating specific body parts on designated days, why not try a series of workouts that engage multiple muscle groups at once?

Let’s take push-ups as an example. This versatile exercise not only targets your chest but also activates your core, shoulders and triceps.

And here’s a hot tip: During each rep, add an oblique twist by bringing your elbow outside your knees. This simple modification will work wonders for your upper and lower abs. It’s a full-body workout in one go!

Now, when it comes to weight training, he advises against going too heavy. The key to muscle growth lies in the amount of time you spend training them.

If you find yourself struggling to complete weight training sets in under 20 seconds, it’s a sign that you’ve chosen weights that are too heavy. To achieve optimal results, aim for weights that challenge you for a duration of at least 30 to 40 seconds. Slow and steady wins the muscle-building race!

But hold on – if your goal is to sculpt those big muscles, be wary of overdoing it on cardio. Excessive cardiovascular exercise can lead to burning too many calories.

However, if you still want to incorporate cardio into your routine, Vosloo suggests 20-minute jogs.

And here’s a crucial piece of advice – if you’re aiming to burn fat, ensure you’re consuming enough protein daily (around 1.6 to 2.2 grams per kilogram of your body weight) while keeping an eye on your overall calorie intake.

Get ready to unleash your full potential and achieve your fitness goals in a smart and balanced way. It’s time to redefine your workout routine and witness incredible transformations!