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Total Personal Training

Complete fitness inside and out      07815 935147


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New Years Resolutions for 2020

Posted on 31 December, 2019 at 9:15 Comments comments (137)
Hey - hope you had a great Christmas and are getting prepared for 2020 :-)

I expect you will all be laying down some major New Years Resolutions but try not to set the bar too high as you will fall at the first hurdle.  I advises clients that you have to set yourself something ACHIEVABLE and WITHIN REACH.

It's no good saying that you are just going to eat lettuce and run 10k every day as you won't stick to it.

Let me help you put an ACHIEVABLE plan together for you that you WILL STICK TO and GET RESULTS.

I am very realistic about the time pressures that we all have and I can help you with that.  Check out some of the offers that I have or drop me an email [email protected] and let's start to get you on the road to fitness.

Happy New Year chaps!!

The Mental Health Benefits of Exercise

Posted on 11 November, 2019 at 13:35 Comments comments (17)
You already know that exercise is good for your body. But did you know it’s also effective in dealing with depression, anxiety, stress, and more?

What are the mental health benefits of exercise?

Exercise is not just about aerobic capacity and muscle size. Sure, exercise can improve your physical health and your physique, trim your waistline, improve your sex life, and even add years to your life. But that’s not what motivates most people to stay active.

Regular exercise can have a profoundly positive impact on depression, anxiety, ADHD, and more. It also relieves stress, improves memory, helps you sleep better, and boosts your overall mood. And you don’t have to be a fitness fanatic to reap the benefits. Research indicates that modest amounts of exercise can make a difference. No matter your age or fitness level, you can learn to use exercise as a powerful tool to feel better.

Other mental and emotional benefits of exercise

Sharper memory and thinking. The same endorphins that make you feel better also help you concentrate and feel mentally sharp for tasks at hand. Exercise also stimulates the growth of new brain cells and helps prevent age-related decline.

Better sleep. Even short bursts of exercise in the morning or afternoon can help regulate your sleep patterns. If you prefer to exercise at night, relaxing exercises such as yoga or gentle stretching can help promote sleep.

Stronger resilience. When faced with mental or emotional challenges in life, exercise can help you cope in a healthy way, instead of resorting to alcohol, drugs, or other negative behaviors that ultimately only make your symptoms worse. Regular exercise can also help boost your immune system and reduce the impact of stress.

Top tips for Energy, Vitality and Weight Loss

Posted on 26 April, 2012 at 11:26 Comments comments (40)
Follow these top 10 tips and you will start getting in control of your body:

1. Eat every 2-3 hours to prevent blood sugar dips

2. Drink 1.5-2 litres water per day to stay hydrated
* we often mistake thirst for hunger so drink before you eat

3. Go easy on the carbs, including certain fruits
Too many starchy carbs upset blood sugar so you need to control them.  Keep to the following per meal:
* 1 slice wholemeal bread OR 1/2 cup brown rice OR 3 new potatoes OR 2 handfuls quinoa OR 1 large carrot OR handful wholemeal pasta.........OR 3 chips!
* Keep to just 2 portions of fruit per day but avoid pineapple, mango, grapes and bananas

4. Include protein with every meal as it slows down energy release from food and keeps blood sugar balanced.  Buy the best quality meat and fish possible.

5. Avoid sugar
Excess sugar gets converted to FAT in the body and causes weight gain, hormone imbalances and fluctuations in the blood sugar.

6. Reduce stimulants (tea, ,coffee, alcohol)

7. Eat loads of non starchy veg and salad
* Broccoli, cabbage, kale, rocket tomatoes, peppers, cucumber, radishes, green beans - basically any veg with lots of colour!

8. Include Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs) for every cell in your body to work properly, including your brain
* Omega 6 - nuts and seeds
* Omega 3 - oily fish and flaxseeds

9. Avoid additives, preservatives and chemicals
* go organic if possible
* avoid artificial sweeteners as linked with mood swings and aspartame is know to stimulate appetite!

10. Exercise at least 3 times a week - more on that in another Blog!!

Try and keep to these rules and you will start to feel great after only a short while.

Keep healthy!

Eat more protein and cure that snack habit

Posted on 14 October, 2011 at 10:14 Comments comments (166)
Too little protein in your diet makes you feel hungry and reach for fattening snacks, an International study shows.
Eating more than the average amount of foods such as meat, fish, eggs and nuts can stop you gaining two pounds a month.
Researchers found that those whose meals were ten per cent protein consumed 260 more calories a day than those on 15% protein.
A typical British diet is 12% protein.
The researchers from Cambridge University and the University of Sydney recruited 22 volunteers to live and eat in a science facility.
While the foods looked the same they had different protein levels.
People who consumed ten per cent protein a day ate on average an extra 1,036 calories over a four day period compared with those who ate a 15% protein diet.  Over a year that would be enough to gain two stone!
Those on a 15% protein diet also felt fuller after meals.
Lead author Alison Grosby, of the University of Sydney, said 'The results show humans have a particularly strong appetite for protein, and when the proportion of protein in the diet is low this appetitie can drive excess energy intake.
The study was published yesterday in the journal PLoS One.

Tasty Salad Nicoise

Posted on 5 October, 2011 at 7:15 Comments comments (24)
Another one of my favourites I thought I ought to share:

Salade Nicoise - serves 1

50g new potatoes
50g green beans, trimmed
100g fresh tuna, grilled or canned tuna
5 large cos lettuce leaves
3 plum tomatoes
1 tbsp capers
4 anchovy fillets, drained
6 black olives
1/2 small red onion chopped
5 basil leaves, torn into strips

2tbsp olive oil
2tsp balsamic vinegar

Steam or boil potatoes and beans until tender.
Arrange lettuce on place
Whisk together dressing ingredients
Slice tomatoes and put in bowl.  Chop capers and anchovies and add to bowl
Halve potatoes, add to bowl along with beans, onion and basil
Sprinkle dressing over ingredients and toss to coat evenly.  Allow salad to stand for a few minutes so the flavours infuse
Spoon over lettuce and season to taste
Break the runa into walnut sized chunks and scatter over the top.


How often should I exercise?

Posted on 3 October, 2011 at 7:23 Comments comments (53)
So you have decided to start on your new health and fitness regime. You have hundreds of options available to you: join a gym, start a fitness class, exercise at home or train for an event. No matter what option you choose there is still one question that must always be answered, how often should I exercise?

Figuring out how often to perform your fitness regime comes down to 3 personalized factors. Firstly, how much time you have and how much time you are prepared to commit to getting results. Secondly, how intense the activity you are choosing to perform. Finally, how quickly you recover. Lets take a look at each of these in turn.Before starting your new exercise regime it is important to ask yourself how committed you are to the cause? 

Exercising once every 2 weeks won’t get you very far. Be honest with yourself. Realistically you need to do something at least twice per week. Now it is no good saying you are going to go all out and train 5 times per week when you know that you have little time for exercise and exercise isn’t at the top of your priority list.

Once you know how often you are going to exercise you can decide on the intensity of the workout. Here you can start to get a little more creative. Intensity is key when it comes to fat loss so you are better working out harder for less days per week than lightly every day. This is a common mistake made by many people, often believing that more is better. If your goals are something less intense like Pilates or Yoga then you could perform these activities more frequently.

So you should now know the intensity and frequency of your workouts. The final thing to consider, and in my mind the most important, is how quickly you recover. Recovery is the key to any exercise program. You make progress when you recover from the exercise not when you are performing it. Our body learns from each session and through recovery makes it easier for us the next time. This is why you should always increase the intensity slightly over time. We all recover at different speeds depending on age, diet, stressors, genetics etc. Listen to your body and adjust the frequency accordingly.

Consider these 3 simple factors when planning out your exercise regime and you will get the maximum benefits from each workout. My advice would be to start exercising at a good intensity every other day. Listen to your body and take an extra day off if necessary. As you get used to your routine experiment with the intensity and frequency. The harder you work the more time you will need to recover. Don’t forget that recovery is the most important factor but that doesn’t make the perfect excuse for doing nothing.

written by Greg Brookes of GB Personal Training

The Secret to Permanent Weight Loss - How to Boost Your Metabolism

Posted on 29 September, 2011 at 12:11 Comments comments (191)
The secret to permanent weight loss is training your body to be a more efficient calorie-burning engine by maximizing your metabolism. Metabolism is the rate at which a person burns energy, and this is measured in calories. 

What Is Metabolism?

There are three parts of metabolism:
  1. The Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR) is the amount of energy required to maintain the bodily functions and processes when you are resting and awake. Your RMR comprises about 60% of your total daily caloric needs.
  2. The Thermic Effect of Feeding (TEF) is the amount of calories you use to eat and digest food and makes up about 5-10% of total calorie needs.
  3. The Thermic Effect of Activity (TEA) is the rate at which you burn calories while exercising and with normal movements. This accounts for about 30% of caloric needs.
Unfortunately, as we age, our metabolic rate slows down. Starting at about age 25, the average and not physically active person's metabolism declines between 5% and 10% per decade, which accumulates to between 20% and 40% metabolism over the adult life span. However, there is good news for those who continue physical activity their whole lives: they have only a 0.3% metabolic decline per decade. 

Boosting Your Metabolism

The most effective way to "boost" your metabolism is through exercise, especially if you are dieting. Cardio training and weight lifting exercise provides a protective effect against a drop in metabolism. This is because people tend to lose a considerable portion of muscle in calorie-reduction programs that don't include strength training, whereas one of the main benefits from exercise in weight loss programs is the preservation of muscle.

When you increase your muscle, you boost your resting metabolic rate. Weightlifting consumes calories, raises your metabolism, and builds muscle that will consume extra calories later on. This means that all other things being equal, your body will burn more calories even when you are doing nothing. Hunter (2000) did a study in which subjects did resistance training. After 6 months, subjects had increased their RMR and were burning an extra 100 calories per day.

Cardio also boosts metabolism. In a study, participants who did moderate intensity cardio exercise 3-5 days per week for 20-45 minutes for 16 months and had an average increase in RMR of 129 calories per day. (Potteiger 2008).

Including interval cardio training is another powerful method of maximizing your metabolism because it raises your metabolism for several hours after your interval workout. To do an interval workout, do a 5 minute warm up, alternate 2 minutes of moderate intensity cardio with 30 seconds of all-out effort for 10-20 minutes then cool down. 

And lastly, look for situations to be active. Take several daily 10-15 minute brisk walks and increase your activity by doing things like taking the stairs instead of the elevator. This serves to increases your calorie burn even more. People who are consistently on the go can add 20% to their energy expenditure over the day. 

Interval Training for Weight Loss

Posted on 26 September, 2011 at 9:29 Comments comments (22)
Do you want to lose weight, more specifically fat?

Do you feel paralyzed after failing time and time again to lose those extra pounds?
Don’t you just get mad when you do a ton of exercise and you really don't lose any weight at all? 

You may try and fool yourself that it’s ok but every time you look in the mirror, it doesn't lie. Are you finding it harder and harder to be motivated because you are starting to feel a little hopeless?

Well If I can show you a way to lose all your fat in weeks, are you willing to spend no more than 20 minutes three times a week achieving this? What would it mean to you if you could walk around in your costume and feel fantastic about it?

By the time you finish reading this article, you will know how to consistently lose 2 pounds of pure fat every week so you can actually fit into those fantastic clothes you just bought. You are about to discover a type of exercise that causes a chain reaction in your body to burn fat…a LOT of fat, for hours...…but first let’s talk about what doesn’t work.

For years, we've been told low-intensity aerobic exercise is the best method for burning off our extra body fat. Research also indicates that the lower the intensity of the exercise the more percentage of fat is used as fuel for muscles, so in low intensity aerobic activity the body operates in a ‘fat burning’ zone which burns more fat than at higher intensity.  

Unfortunately according to modern research, this just doesn't seem to work very well. In fact tens of experiments have all concluded that aerobic exercise does nothing for large scale fat loss. So unfortunately, like you, there are thousands of people trying desperately to lose weight by doing some work on the treadmill or something similar. And for the most part, all of these people are not going to lose any fat. (If you want some proof go look at a local fun run, these people are fit but are they shape you want to be?)Not too many benefits for all that work… So what to do? 

Well, there is an exercise routine that apart from speedy fat loss has a multitude of benefits which include:
  • Losing at least two pounds per week and I am being conservative with this figure…
  • Getting a toned, athletic look - don’t just lose weight,  mould your body into a shape that will be turning heads;                                                                               
  • Tons and tons of energy - Imagine having energy for a full exciting life, you will have more energy than you know what to do with;                                                              
  • Super fitness - having a lot more cardio endurance and fitness than the guy who spend two hours on the treadmill each day;                                                            
  • Chase away disease - this exercise does wonders for lowering blood pressure and staving type 2 diabetes away; and
  • Automatically as you body loses weight, you will become aware of extra energy and vitality

How would you like it if you had dozens of people desperate to find out your weight loss super secret while they still were failing? Get used to it, it will happen a lot.And think now what will you do with that new toned body, take it to the beach, buy new clothes or shake it on the dance floor.Ok, enough trying to motivate you, the secret to this wonderful metamorphosis is a type of interval training called High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT).   

Study after study has proven the incredible fat burning effects that HIIT can have on the body, in fact in the first bit of research that set interval training as the benchmark for fat loss; the participants lost 9 times as much fat as those doing standard aerobic exercises.It works so well because of a process called EPOC

EPOC occurs in the body after intense exercise drains muscles of their inbuilt energy source. This has to be replenished in the body, and it can take up to 48 hours to happen. During this time your body has no alternative but to draw and burn up your fat reserves. So for the next two days while you sit at work, watch TV or have that peaceful nap, your blood cells are rushing around that belly or those thighs, grabbing as much of the fat as it can and taking it away to use it as energy, without you having to do much...And EPOC is only the immediate benefit; over time your body’s ability to convert energy directly into the muscle increases. The muscles ability to store energy increases so your demands for fat release go up, and interval training starts convincing the body to funnel new energy to the muscles instead of sending them to your fat stores. All of this increases the more you do interval training, so as you can see the better you get at this, the more of afat burning machine your body turns into.

Does this sound too good to be true?

I hope it does. I hope that today you have found something so big that it turns your entire life around. I hope that your success in finally losing those pounds motivates and encourages you to all sorts of success in your life. Great catalysts have an enormous power for making dramatic change. Clearly once you have lost that weight; your lifestyle will change in ways you can only imagine. But you must choose to act now because you don’t want to find yourself in the same place in a year from now.

Earlier on I asked you the question:"If I could show you a way to lose all your fat in weeks, are you willing to spend no more than 20 minutes three times a week achieving this?….", since you are still reading I'm going to assume you answered yes. Well, now that I have shown you how interval training can deliver on that promise, it’s time for you to act on this.  You have finally found the only thing that truly works, an exercise routine that really will lose your fat. So get motivated, get organised and give interval training a good go, stop dreaming of that flat stomach and actually get one. Imagine…in as little as a few weeks being totally fat free, fit and healthy … all because you decided to say "YES" to trying Interval Training today:    

Benefits of using Foam Roller

Posted on 16 September, 2011 at 8:23 Comments comments (21)
I've started to warm up clients with the use of foam rollers with great success so thought ought to share the secret of the roller........

Foam Rollers offer many of the same benefits as a sports massage, without the big price tag.The foam roller not only stretches muscles and tendons but it also breaks down soft tissue adhesions and scar tissue. By using your own body weight and a cylindrical foam roller you can perform a self-massage or myofascial release, break up trigger points, and soothe tight fascia while increasing blood flow and circulation to the soft tissues.

Foam Roller ExercisesHow It Works
The superficial fascia is a soft connective tissue located just below the skin. It wraps and connects the muscles, bones, nerves and blood vessels of the body. Together, muscle and fascia make up what is called the myofascia system. For various reasons including disuse, not enough stretching, or injuries, the fascia and the underlying muscle tissue can become stuck together. This is called an adhesion and it results in restricted muscle movement. It also causes pain, soreness and reduced flexibility or range of motion.Myofascial release is a body work technique in which a practitioner uses gentle, sustained pressure on the soft tissues while applying traction to the fascia. This technique results in softening and lengthening (release) of the fascia and breaking down scar tissue or adhesions between skin, muscles and bones.
Myofascial release has also been shown to relieve various muscle and joint pains such asIT band syndrome and shin splints as well as improving flexibility and range of motion. 

Foam rollers are inexpensive and with a bit of experimentation you can target just about any muscle group.

Green Vegetable, Cannellini Bean and Herb Salad

Posted on 12 September, 2011 at 13:58 Comments comments (117)
Found this really yummy salad I thought I ought to share. Low fat and filling. It makes a great lunchtime snack or is great with some grilled chicken or fish

Green Vegetable, Cannellini Bean and Herb Salad (serves 1)

50g green beans, trimmed
50g peas
75g broccoli, cut into florets
75g courgette, sliced
50g tinned cannellini beans (drained weight)
75g herb salad leaves
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1tsp white wine vinegar
2tbsp olive oil
1tsp runny honey
2tsp finely chopped fresh basil
1/2 tsp wholegrain mustard

1) Boil or steam the vegetables until tender, about ten minutes. Drain and set to one side.
2) To make the dressing, place all the ingredients in a cup or bowl and whisk together until blended.
3) Mix the vegetables and cannellini beanss together in a bowl.  Drizzle over the dressing, then toss until all the ingredients are evenly coated.
4) Arrange the salad leaves on a plaate, pile over the vegetables, season to taste and serve immediately.