With daylight savings back, the sun is setting later and beautiful beach days are just up ahead. We're not sure about you, but we need some motivation to get our fit summer lifestyle back on track.
We got in touch with 3 real people in Beirut who've got their lifestyles in check all year round. They granted us the pleasure of tailing them for a day around their regular activities to see how they go about their routine: from working out, to eating meals, to walking their dogs and work meetings, and even to having a couple of drinks. You'll be seeing 3 features for each person throughout the upcoming few weeks.
SO! If you too need a little push to get your summer bod on, start nowhere but here.
Summer Lifestyle Goals: Featuring Ruby Mikhael
Ruby Mikhael is our very first summer lifestyle inspiration for you. You might already know her if you follow her on Instagram (@rubymikhael), but here are a few things you might not know.
Ruby is Lebanese-born but grew up in Iraq, moving to Beirut after the war. She fluently speaks English, Arabic and French.
She's currently working hard to get her International Sports Sciences Association certificate so she can start giving personal and lifestyle training (#yas).
She works out 4 to 5 times a week depending on how hectic her schedule is (see her full routine below!), but her favourite sport is swimming.
She recommends swimming because it's an incredible way to fit cardio into your workout routine without putting stress on bones, joints and muscles. It's a full body workout, plus exercising in water makes your body work harder because of the added resistance against the water. Noted Ruby! Now we just need to find a pool close to home...
Part 1: Morning Gym
In our first feature with Ruby, she takes us with her to the gym and shows us her workout routine.
Ruby's Gym Routine: Breakfast, Habits & Tips
"I wake up, wash my face, put my morning ritual creams, never forgetting sunscreen, and get dressed. I then head to the kitchen to prepare my breakfast and lunch for the day. I always experiment with my food so I spend a while in the kitchen every morning, plus breakfast is essential for me. I usually prepare two poached eggs, one whole wheat toast and avocado - in an effort to have my 'good carbs' before the gym."
"I live in Kaslik, so on my way to Beirut I stop by Succo Mar Mikhael and pick up two green cold pressed juices and head to work."
"I like my body's energy in the morning, I feel super energised and strong, but I also like the challenge of inputting a workout in the middle of my day - it makes it more thrilling in a way."
"I try to get a workout in as many days as possible a week, keeping in mind my week and everyday life improve when workouts are more frequent."
"When it comes to my gym outfits, just like there's an outfit for every sport, theres an outfit for the gym. If you wear the wrong shoes you might hurt yourself, so I put my safety and comfort first."
"A litte tip for everyone that might not have a consistent workout time, keep some workout gear in the car for whenever you have an extra unplanned hour to spare."
"I personally loved this workout ensemble from BHV's Urban Lifestyle Concept, and I recommend everyone to go take a look at the collection, especially you sport lovers."
Ruby's Workout Routine
Need some help with a full body workout routine that you can do on your own? Here is exactly what Ruby recommends.
Start with a 10-15 minute warm-up which includes some wide mobility movements such as jogging or rowing. Give yourself another 5 minutes to stretch and lean. This is essential before any type of workout.
Lower Body Workout:
1. Hip Thrusters: 5 sets of 10 repetitions each. I love starting with that as it gets all major muscles of my workout ready.
2. Squats: 4 sets of 10 repetitions each.
3. Lunges: 5 sets of 10-12 repetitions each. On some days I replace this move with with weighted bench step-ups.
4. Sumo Dumbbell Squats: 4 sets of 10-15 repetitions each.
5. One-legged Cable Kick-Back: 4 sets of 10 repetitions each. On some days I replace this with single leg kick-back using a Smith machine if available.
6. Inner Thigh Abductor Machine: 4 sets of 12 repetitions each.
Upper Body Workout:
I usually follow two routines: Back and Chest on one day and Shoulders and Arms on the other. I never go heavy with upper body weights, I just make sure it's challenging; slow movement usually does the job.
Back and Chest:
1. Wide Grip Pull-Up Machine (or Close Grip Pull-Down): 4 sets of 10 repetitions each.
2. Bent-over Barbell Deadlift: 5 sets of 10 repetitions each. Other days I'd do single arm dumbbell row.
3. Seated Cable row ( wide or tight grip): 4 sets of 10 repetitions each.
4. Push-Ups: 4 sets of 10 repetitions each. You can keep your knees on the ground if you don't have full body strength at first.
5. Incline Dumbbell Press Superset with Chest Fly: 4 sets of 10 repetitions each
6. Tricep Dips: 4 sets of 10 repetitions each.
Shoulders and Arms:
1. Shoulder Press: 4 sets of 10 repetitions each.
2. Seated Side Lateral Raise: 3 sets of 12 repetitions each.
3. Front Dumbbell Raises: 3 sets of 12 repetitions each.
4. Rear Delt Raise OR Cable Pull: 4 sets of 10 repetitions each.
Biceps & Triceps Super Sets:
1. Standing Dumbbell Curl + Band Skull Crushers: 3 sets of 12 repetitions each.
2. Static Dumbbell Curl + Cable Rope Overhead Triceps Extension: 3 sets of 12 repetitions each.
Always end with a quick 15-20 minute abs/lower-back circuit:
1. Leg Raises: 5 sets of 10 repetitions each.
2. Knee Raises: 5 sets of 10 repetitions each.
3. Side Plank: 3 sets of 45-60 secs each.
4. Superman exercise
Get Ruby's Outfit
Ruby's full gym outfit (not including shoes & sweater) is from BHV's Urban Lifestyle concept, where athleisure meets street wear for both women and men. It's available for you to shop right now at BHV Citymall in Dora.
BHV's Urban Lifestyle Concept
Join the latest trend by opting from a wide selection of separates to compliment your healthy routine, everything from a comfy hoodie to a sexy sports bra. If you’re hitting the gym early morning, suit up in one of Juicy Couture’s matching bra and leggings. If you’re attending yoga class right after work, balance off your logo RAD bralette with an off-the-shoulder, work-inspired shirt from Cop Copine.
On the other hand, if you’re aiming to show off those abs you’ve been working hard on, don’t shy away from CK’s “it” bralette paired under a blazer and track pants. And if you’re running errands on a Saturday morning – which we assume is the case for most of you – there’s nothing more practical than slipping into an EA7 tracksuit or a pair of jeans and tee from Cheap Monday or Hero Seven. There are plenty of ways to nail this trend, and we’re here to help guide you through it.
Special thanks to: Achrafieh 4748 for letting us take over their gym for the photo shoot.