January 14, 2015

My Slendertone Abs Journey: Week One

 Day 1 (left) of using the Slendertone System Abs Belt and Day 7 (right); I will be charting my weekly progress for the recommended four-to-six week period
           In December, I wrote a post about the Bloggers Love Hub event (read it here), where I connected with some amazing brands. I usually run My London Dream as a lifestyle blog, but after collaborating with these brands, my blog has had a bit of a mini makeover. I’ve been injecting some product reviews, such as the Vita Liberata NKD SKN Tan Mousse post below (alternatively, find it here). Fashion, beauty, cosmetics, and overall health and wellbeing are of great interest to me. I always say that I would love to try my hand at makeup reviews and tutorials as well, but I simply don’t have the time! Hopefully in the future that can change!

             For now, I love trying new products from brands that I believe in and that’s why you’ll occasionally see me post about them. After all, part of living in London is about how you decide to portray yourself in the big city and how you stand out from the crowd. I am very excited to have teamed up with Slendertone, a company whose products are scientifically proven to improve muscle tone and body shape.

             The real world has crept up on me to put an end to my holiday overindulging. I just started back up at university this past Monday, but I am back on track with my workout regime. I will be charting my abs journey with you all and I have just completed week one using the Slendertone System Abs Belt.

The complete Slendertone System Abs Belt package, photo courtesy of Slendertone
             I was a bit skeptical to try this product to begin with, because I very much adhere to the philosophy that nothing can replace good old-fashioned working out and eating healthily. I was interested to try the Slendertone System Abs Belt however, because I’ll admit that I have been a bit lazy with my working out ever since last summer. All summer, I went to the gym almost everyday, with rest days in between. I had abs days, leg days, arm days, and running days. Working out produces the experience of being on a high and I felt good, about myself and about my body. It made me eat better and I cut sweets out of my diet completely, because I wanted to maintain all of my hard work at the gym.

             Then, I returned to London and life got in the way, as it normally does. That’s where Slendertone came in. I would like to first preface by saying that Slendertone does not promise weight loss through using their products and I don’t want to advocate that. Instead, they promote toning and shaping the body. You won’t be able to use a Slendertone product and see desirable results if you continue eating unhealthily or don’t exercise on a regular basis. What I have liked so far about the Slendertone System Abs Belt is that using it motivates me to maintain a healthier lifestyle. I have yet again cut out sweets from my diet and am working out with the help of some cardio and body sculpting DVDs. My yoga mat arrived in the mail just recently, which I fully intend to make good use of!

The Slendertone System Abs Belt in action
             For the next recommended four-to-six week period, I will write a post per week with before and after photos to show you my progress. 100 percent of users report firmer, more toned abs after four weeks! The product needs to be used five times a week across that timeframe in order to notice any visible results. After that time period, the product can be used two-to-three times a week in order to maintain the results. I personally have been using the Slendertone System Abs Belt six times a week, with one rest day for my muscles to recover.

             The way the belt works is through Electrical Muscle Stimulation technology. The technology is applied through pads, which are positioned on selected muscle groups. The pads stimulate nerve endings to create deep, comfortable muscle contractions in all of the surrounding muscles, not just those underneath the pads. Targeted and neighboring muscles then begin to strengthen and tone.

The outside of the belt (top) is very understated, while the inside of the belt (bottom) contains adhesive pads that use Electrical Muscle Stimulation Technology 
             The setup of the belt was very simple due to the step-by-step guide provided in the box. Three adhesive pads (one large square pad and two smaller oval pads) come with the product. Your waist size determines where the smaller oval pads are placed, with the belt providing three different options. When you position the belt on your body, it lies across your waist and across your belly button. This targets the Rectus Abdominus and Oblique muscles, along with the Transversus Abdominus, which is essential for obtaining a flatter stomach.

The smaller oval pads are positioned in relation to your waist size
             The muscles simultaneously contract and then relax, which mimics the regular muscle contraction experienced during normal exercise. As for the sensation, it is not an unpleasant one, but it is definitely noticeable. I feel my muscles contracting when I use the belt, which is what I want! If I keep myself occupied, I hardly notice the feeling at all. You are completely in control of the intensity level of each session. The unit that comes with the belt has different programs you can select, geared towards your personal needs. There are seven programs all together, which have different time durations, intensity levels (0-99), and toning power. You can increase the intensity levels for the left and right side of your waist separately.

             I have been keeping track on a notepad daily to organize my dates and to remember the program I used, for how long, and the intensity levels of each session. The way I have approached using the Slendertone System Abs Belt is when I feel that I have comfortably finished a session at a certain intensity level, I move the intensity level up during the next session. If I feel too comfortable during the session itself, I bump the intensity level up during the session. The highest intensity level I have reached so far is 50 for the left side of my waist and 50 for the right side of my waist.

The program and intensity level of each toning session is controlled via the unit that is connected to the Slendertone System Abs Belt
             The Slendertone System Abs Belt can also be used while you work out. It’s not invasive and works hand-in-hand to optimize the workout. I have tried the product in various situations so far: simply sitting down and using my laptop, a brisk hour-long walk through Kensington Gardens, and working out using one of the cardio DVDs. Although, I did get rather hot in the last example!

             Just as with any post-workout recuperation, I have noticed some muscle soreness, especially on rest days. No pain, no gain as they say! That’s natural, but if you are in immense discomfort, it’s important to lower the intensity level of the belt. Overall, after my first week of trying the product, my stomach area definitely feels tighter and tauter. I expect that the next few weeks will produce more visible firming results for me to show you. There is not too much difference in my before and after photos at the moment, because as with all exercise, it takes at least a solid month to notice any changes and improvements.

It's the final countdown...
             Make sure to check back next week as I continue to chart my journey with the Slendertone System Abs Belt! Slendertone produces a wide range of products for men and women to suit the areas you would like to target, including: abs, arms, face, and bottom. You can browse and buy all Slendertone products from their official website here and additionally at Amazon, Argos, Boots, and Littlewoods.

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