Not everything we write goes on the website – if you’re not following us on Facebook you’re missing out on tips to keep you healthy and fit! Here’s a round up of recent posts.
James Smashes it!
We’ve posted a number of times about our client James. We have been charting his deadlift progress over the months. Recently he finished his first programme – this was his final deadlift – a whopping 145.5kg for 6 reps!
That’s not all James achieved:
– Muscle gained
– 10.8kg of fat lost
– % body fat down from 32.6% to 25.6%
– % muscle mass up from 38% to 41.7%
– Visceral fat down by 2.8kg
– Blood pressure down from high to ideal
The only thing that’s not ideal is his BMI – not because he is carrying fat weight but because he is carrying muscle weight!
James has been religious with his supplementation and totally focused in his workouts. The progress on his lifts has been relentless. Great job James!
I’m delighted to say that James enjoyed his programme so much that he has signed up again. We’re both looking forward to further monster gains and impressive stats.
There will be more details on James’ successes in the near future.
Stay healthy – get your anti-oxidants
Do you know your anti-oxidants?
Antioxidants help to neutralise certain reactive molecules that would otherwise cause cellular damage. These reactive molecules – popularly referred to as free radicals – can contribute to a number of diseases including degenerative diseases, cardiovascular disease, diabetes and cancer. It is often written that antioxidants may slow the ageing process.
So, if you want to reduce your risk of disease and age well – get your antioxidants!
What are the main anti-oxidants?
In your diet:
• Vitamin C – found in fruit and veg
• Vitamin E – found in vegetable oils, nuts and seeds
• Carotenes, including vitamin A – found in many vegetables, particularly coloured vegetables such as carrots and sweet potato.
Although not antioxidants themselves, the minerals zinc, manganese, copper and selenium play an important part in biosynthesis of antioxidants and the reduction of oxidative processes.
Internally the body makes other important antioxidants such as lipoic acid, ubiquinol (Co-enzyme Q10), glutiathone and uric acid. These things are available as supplements but your best bet is to minimise the amount of processed food you eat and follow a healthy balanced diet containing lots of fruit and veg, lean protein, wholegrains and pulses.
That guidance is essentially the Government’s Eatwell plate. I’ve read some of their scientific output on nutrition and I can assure you it’s well researched and well considered. So, you can trust that by following government guidelines, your nutrition will contribute as much as possible to your health.
Of course, for optimal health, exercise is also important….. but that’s for another post!
Did you see that programme on the telly the other day with Adrian Chiles talking about alcohol consumption? In it he reported that he regularly drinks more than 100 units a week.
Would you believe that I too used to do that many years ago? Those of you who know me may find that difficult to believe because I’m tee-total now and a very clean eater. But unlike Chiles, who feels he is a social drinker, I think I had a problem. I felt like I was always drunk, I felt rubbish, but I knew I would rein it in before too long, which I did.
What’s interesting about this article is that it is clearly not uncommon for people to drink this amount. This may be controversial, but I’d go as far as to say from my personal experience and observation, most people who drink consume a lot more than the recommended safe limit of 14 units a week.
Personally, I think alcohol is a contributing factor to the obesity epidemic. There are a lot of calories in alcohol. It doesn’t matter if you drink beer or vodka, you’re getting a lot of calories.
Aside from the additional calorie intake, alcohol also has the following undesirable effects
– It suppresses testosterone
– It switches off fat burning
– It gives you a sugar high, insulin spike and subsequent sugar low
– It reduces the liver’s ability to release glucose in to the bloodstream when your blood sugar is low following your insulin spike. This is why you get the munchies when you’ve had a drink.
– It reduces your inhibitions and self-control. That’s why you eat a greasy kebab on the way home
– It can exacerbate depression or low mood.
– It is associated with fatty liver disease, diabetes and some cancers.
If you want to maintain a healthy weight and a healthy body you should really keep below the recommended 14 units per week. I know, I know, I sound like a born-again tee-totaller. I’ve been there, I know alcohol can feel like a reward for a hard day, it can relax you, it can make you happy and fun loving for a few hours. But I’ve discovered other ways to reward myself, relax and feel contented. Plus, I feel happy that I am healthy and have all the vitality I need.
You’ll find some more details of my story on our website. If you’d like to find out more then please give me a ring or drop me a note.
Lift metal for mental resolve
When the going gets tough, are you determined to battle your way to success, or do you tend to quit?
There’s an underappreciated benefit of lifting weights: it improves mental resolve.
When you’ve set your sights on 10 repetitions of a lift, you’re going to do your utmost to get them, particularly if you have a trainer or buddy encouraging you.
Do this repeatedly and you get good at battling your way to success! You dig in, you grit your teeth and you hit your target.
Seeing your lifts increase week on week helps you to believe in yourself. You learn to appreciate the efficacy of persistence in helping you get to where you want to be. You CAN succeed. You just need to work hard and be consistent.
Our clients are often surprised by how much they enjoy the weight training in their programmes. They enjoy the small victories every week that ultimately add up to achievements they did not believe they had in them.
So, if you sometimes have a lack of self belief, you might want to try weight training…. you might be surprised at the results.
The low down on low carb
This is spooky! It seems like every time I write an article, the BBC publishes some news on the topic.
Last time it was about doing some resistance training to age well. This time it’s about low carb diets.
The take away is that low carb diets are not only highly questionable as a weight loss strategy, they may also shorten your life expectancy!
Be aware that not all carbs were created equal. See our article on the low carb approach for more information about including the right carbs in your diet.
Note that our private programmes have a heavy emphasis on food, including 2 hours of food coaching. Please give us a call if you’d like to know more.
Beetroot – love it or hate it?
You should definitely learn to love it.
Beetroot contains colourful pigments – betacyanins, a kind of betalain – which convey a lot of the health benefits. Among the benefits are
– Anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory and detoxification support
– Contains nitrates which help reduce blood pressure
– The same nitrates help with stamina in workouts – beetroot is often used as a pre-workout supplement.
– Contains lots of vitamin C and glutamine which help with immune system support
– Is being heavily researched for its anti-cancer effects
– They are high fibre so they help keep your gut healthy
There are plenty of recipes out there containing beetroot but if you’re looking for simplicity you can steam them, roast them, juice them, grate them raw into salads or pulp them into soups. If you want to be super healthy then eat the skins. If you want to be super-duper healthy then steam the greens and eat those too.
Although it’s better to buy raw and cook it yourself, for minimum hassle you can also buy it cooked and ready to eat.
Oh and I nearly forgot…. it’s delicious, we just love it.
So, what’s not to love about beetroot? Go on, get some down you and enjoy a boost to your health.