6 top tips for better workouts

With regular training there are so many variables and with this we are always looking to get the most from what we do.  Even if it’s  a daily commute to work or an occasional gym workout, these top tips will help you get the most from your workout.  Much of this comes down to specificity which essentially means we are all individual with different needs and goals.  This is a very important part of the process.

Eating before exercise

Getting the nutrition right before training is really an individual thing.  For performance we need to eat plenty of calories and consider the macro nutrients carbohydrates, protein and fat.  Remember we need some carbs for performance and fat is always the slowest to digest so leave plenty of time after higher fat meals.  For weight loss performance may take a back seat and it’s a case of eating just enough.  Either way it’s certainly worth trying lots of different options to see what works.

 

..and after exercise

The post exercise window of anything up to an hour is the perfect time to refuel.  Usually carbs and protein are priority here and again it’s individual to what we can manage and how much we need.  The recovery process starts here so a good post workout snack/meal can mean a big difference.

 

Get specific

Have a clear idea of what you want to achieve before the workout, then stick to it.  This is a major part of training and without it we are simply smashing empty miles or pushing empty reps.  Along these lines the more interesting training plans are those designed around events or sports.

 

Pre hab routines

Pre hab exercise are simply exercises that help to mobilize, rebalance and prepare the body for a workout.  Tight hips, sleepy abs or sticky shoulders need a wake up before we even start.  Time spent here reduces injury risk and means the body is much happier working later.

 

Find a training buddy (or Personal Trainer!)

You will simply enjoy the training more, work harder and generally look forward to workouts.  This goes a long way especially on the days where motivation is down.

 

Shake it up a little

Try a different method of training or even a totally different activity entirely.  It’s good to keep the body guessing and essentially it’s good for the body and mind to use some different movements.  Always fancied some squash or windsurfing?  Use that new found fitness and strength to go and have a lesson.

 

As always, come and see us to do things the right way.  We offer quality Personal Training from our exclusive studio at www.bourne-fit.co.uk

 

 

 

 

 

Why we should eat more fats

For many years we were taught to be fat phobic.   Fat causes heart disease, fat makes us fat, eat a low fat diet for weight loss, right? Wrong.  The thinking has now changed on these, so here are some ideas on why and how .

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Firstly, I have personally made a big shift towards eating more fat for a number of months now.  And this has all been done as an ‘eating machine’ on more than 7-8 hours of training a week.   Energy is at an all time high and training/recovery as good as ever.

 

Fat will help you lose weight

Excess carbohydrates, processed foods and inactivity cause weight gain.  A higher fat (and protein) diet works reduce body fat by reducing hunger and stabilising blood sugar.

The hunger and food cravings are probably the key here.  Think about trying to eat a 500 calorie breakfast – would you last longer on a sugary cereal and orange juice or a cooked breakfast?.

When we eat carbs we can often get a rise and crash of blood sugar which is also risky for storing fat.  Fats are the slowest releasing of the major nutrients, therefore leave a nice steady release of energy, actually encouraging the body to burn fat.

 

It’s all about the macros

Macro nutrients are the mix of carbs, fats and proteins.  During an average day we consume a mix of the three and importantly we all require slightly different mixtures.  This is another article in itself but what I will say here is most people will favour carbs and proteins over fats.  Typically the protein requirements are around 20% so it’s normally playing with the mix of the other two where difference can be made.

 

How to eat more fats in the diet

Personally this is how I have done it…

Eating a cooked breakfast – think bacon, eggs, butter, black pudding!, avocados, smoked salmon,

Eat meat/fish as an essential part of the diet (vegans can work out their own plan!)

Add olive oil to salads (with garlic and chilli if it helps)

Go bulletproof coffee (add coconut oil to coffee)

Snack on nuts, seeds, cheeses

 

Making changes

Make small changes and test them, essentially seeing how you feel meal by meal.  The Myfitnesspal app is really good for monitoring macros and calories.   Happy fats!

 

 

 

How to get your nutrition on track this week

Whether it’s for fat loss, performance or just to feel healthier making improvements in our diet has a massive impact.  Nutrition is usually a double sided coin.  Trying to include a good range of health giving foods and trying to remove as many processed, high sugar foods as possible.

In the world of computer programming there is something known as a ‘hack’.  This is essentially a shortcut that gets the desired result.  We can use the same with diet…..

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So here it is.

Eat the same breakfast and lunches on repeat 

It’s as simple as that and this is probably something we do anyway.  The trick is to choose one(maybe two) super healthy breakfasts and lunches and just repeat them.  These two meals are undoubtedly the hardest to get right and essentially leave us feeling less hungry all day.  With just dinner remaining we are more likely to make good choices.

Do this for a week, then be free to change it up later…

 

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Need inspiration?

Breakfast 

2 boiled eggs, a small bowl of porridge with seeds and honey, fresh carrot apple ginger and orange juice

OR

Smoked salmon, asparagus, spinach berry and banana smoothie

 

Lunch

Fresh salad, cucumber, spinach, peppers, mozzarella cheese, chicken tikka and olive oil

OR

Homemade beef/bean chilli

 

Mystical reasons for not losing weight and how to fix them

Trying to drop weight is a mission for many in a bid to improve shape, health or self confidence. It’s important to get the basics right with proper training and nutrition.  Beyond this some people don’t lose weight as they’d expect which is totally normal …here are a few of the less obvious reasons.

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 Not eating enough calories.

Many popular diets and extreme measures mean cutting calories but this can sometimes be detrimental especially if you’re exercising.  Eating too few calories for too long will cause a reduction in metabolism.

Fix  – Eat a little bit more. Varying the calorie intake will kickstart the metabolism (methods such as the 5:2 are good).

 

Not including liquid calories

Liquid calories in the form soft drinks, hot drinks and (ahem) alcohol will wreck your weight loss campaign.  Liquid form is often the quickest way to absorb anything and this is also true of calories which is why sports drinks are liquid form.

Fix – Don’t do it!  Or certainly limit it, the only liquid we should consume is the clear stuff and we don’t mean vodka.

 

Eating diet products

If something sounds too good be true… well it is.  Diet products, particularly diet drinks contain chemicals that are lethal for health and often have the same effect on blood sugar levels.  You are always for better off having the real thing, in which case you probably wouldn’t.

Fix – Eat the real thing, or probably just some real food.

 

Lifestyle factors

Two of the biggest are stress and sleep.  Stress can be in the form of simply being very busy or it may be more specific.  Stress or lack of sleep trigger hormones that will slow down weight loss efforts or even halt them all together.

Fix – Do some stress busting exercise, go for a walk or simply schedule some time out.  Improve sleep patterns by doing the same, eating a healthy diet, avoiding too many stimulants or simply going to bed earlier.

The best way to a better gym workout

Many of us find it easy and convenient to go the gym simply to hop onto some cardio machinery and ‘zone out’ for 30 minutes to an hour.  This is possibly the worst use of time.  Let’s have a look at the simple but effective way to boost those workouts, interval training.

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Interval training essentially pushes the body above it’s usual steady state intensity for short periods.  This can be anything from 100% all out effort for 10 seconds to 85% effort for 10 minutes.  Whatever method you use it’s important to understand the intention.

Intervals burn more fat

Most people on cardio machines want to burn fat.  Intervals effectively stimulate fat burning  and essentially produce a longer ‘afterburn’ effect.  It’s that simple.

Intervals boost fitness more

In order to produce any change in fitness we need to overload the body in some way.  Pushing the heart rate higher increases cardio function and efficiency.  In most cases due to the increased intensity, less overall time needs to be spent doing it.  Good news all round.

How to incorporate intervals

This depends on your weekly training, but for the majority of us a good rule is to do intervals no more than twice a week.  Intervals are not for the unfit or faint hearted.  If you are unsure, get advice from a medical professional before attempting high intensity work.   Also make sure you are well warmed up, at least 10 minutes should do it.   Here are a couple of simple ways of doing intervals within your workouts…

 

Equal work/recovery  —    Work at 90% for 60 seconds then at 50% for 60 seconds.

Pyramids   —   Work for the following with equal recovery.  1-2-3-4-3-2-1    Do a 1 minute effort then 1 minute recovery, 2 minutes/2 minutes recovery etc.

Go by distance  —   the rower is good for this but any cardio machine works.  Work hard for say 500m and take a note of your time.  Go off, do some weights etc then come back later and have another go trying to beat your last time.

 

Need more advice or want to incorporate these properly?  Come and see us  www.bourne-fit.co.uk

Weight loss : The best advice in a nutshell

Whether you have been trying to lose weight for a while or just thinking of getting started it can be tricky to get the best information.  Here at BourneFit we are experts in weight loss and understand there are more than just a few elements. We are all different.  That said, here’s a cracking start giving you the best bits..

So here’s the main information.  Much of the info comes from where the research is at and is also based on professional experiences and having seen what works.  

 

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The best way to lose weight

Get mentally focused.  It sounds cliche, but if you are totally committed to something it will happen.  You have to want it every hour of the day, think about it constantly and be determined for it to happen.  

 

Along these lines, sometimes we need to change the way we approach things mentally.  This does not have to be a pass or fail scenario.  We are human, there may be the odd shocker we just have to think long term and stay committed. .  

 

Food guide

 

All diets work.  In some shape or form they restrict what you eat and cause fat loss, mainly through cutting calories.  The trouble is they are hard to stick to and often result in rebounding weight.  But….bear in mind they all work.  

 

Dietary changes are the best changes we can make and the ones which will affect weight loss the most.  We need to make some brutal changes!..

 

Here are 3 major changes.  Here are the best 3 thing we can do to encourage weight loss.  

 

1.  Cut out the crap.  We know beer and chocolate are going to hold back weight loss if not with calories by the toxic nature and the effect the have on the body.  If in doubt go back a couple of paragraphs to ‘get mentally focused’ and get more committed.  Avoid as much sugar as possible and most packaged products preparing all meals from fresh ingredients.  These foods will keep you satisfied and encourage long term weight loss.  

 

2.   Eat less carbs.  Use a food tracker like myfitnesspal to limit or restrict consumption of all sugars, bread, grain based foods and high carb foods.  They release insulin which encourages fat storage.  Target less than 100 g of carbs per day.  

 

3.  Try a fast 2 days per week.  Simply skip breakfast and lunch if you can, snack in the afternoon if it helps then eat a ‘normal’ evening meal.  Obviously we are cutting a lot of calories here, but also changing the body uses fuels and encouraging other health benefits.  Fasting is great to really help us appreciate appetite and food in general.  Fasting allows us to eat more on the other days of the week, preventing a dropped metabolism.  

 

​Exercise guide​

All exercise promotes weight loss.  Cardio burns calories, weight training boosts metabolism, intervals burn more calories.  

If you are not training properly 3-4 times a week then do this straight away.  

If you are then try some fat burning workouts by exercising while slightly hungry, slower for longer.  If you normally run 5k on a Saturday morning, run for 8k on an empty stomach but steady.  Once or twice a week is good for this – it won’t boost performance but it will encourage fat loss.  

 

Want proper support?  Check out our Bournemouth weight loss service

 

Health, fitness and the 80:20 principle

What is 80:20?

The 80:20 principle has been around a while now, but it’still amazing how many times it’s relevant.   It refers to percentages and can be applied to pretty much anything.    Globally around 80% of the worlds wealth is owned by 20% of the worlds people. 80% of our happiness comes from 20% of what we do.  Importantly in most things in life..

80% of our results come from 20% of the work we put in. 

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80:20 in fitness

In fitness it would be outlined as 80% of what we achieve (results) is produced by 20% of our training.  So basically comes down to efficiency and the need to train specifically. As an example, if you want to train for fitness the old method of plodding away on a treadmill for 60 minutes will improve your fitness. But 15-20 minutes of high quality intervals will do as good a job, if not better.

So what we need to be doing is looking for the exercises and methods that give us the greatest gains. Try some of the following:

 

  • Buy a heart rate monitor and use heart rate training to train by heart zone rather than feel.
  • Weight training – find what are you looking for, drill it down. Do you need strength, condition, tone? I guarantee you can do more in less time by lifting with more form, range or even less rest.
  • Break 60 minute sessions down to at most 45 minutes. It’s amazing what you’ll get done.

80:20 in nutrition

This same principle can be applied in relation to dietary habits.

  • Fat loss for many is 80% dietary, 20% fitness training and genetics. It’s very tough to drop body fat on a good training routine but a bad eating plan.  What we eat is key to losing weight.
  • Eating 80% clean and 20% what you will is a great long term strategy.

 

Keep looking..

Both nutrition and training tend to need regular attention to keep the progress and using the 80:20 rule is a good way of doing this.  Look at your plan and work out where that 20% is coming from in order to spend the time wisely and see the greatest gains.

 

Looking to apply that 80:20 principle?  Come and see us for a FREE consultation by visiting the website.

 

Dieting, weight loss and how it all works.

Most of us have tried to lose weight (or more specifically drop body fat) at some point.  In this case we may have tried one of the many diets on the market or simply tried to ‘eat healthily’ to attain good shape.  Let’s have a look at how diets work and shed some light on the subject..

The diet industry is a multi billion pound business, due mainly to the number of people looking for a solution.  In fact, the initial success rate of dieting is actually pretty good.  In most cases we follow a particular diet and lose weight by following its rules and principles.   This success rate drops dramatically when we fast forward months or years later, with most people having regained the weight lost and often added more.  That’s probably the best indicator to how successful they are.

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But let’s go back to how diets work in an attempt to improve weight loss results.  Diets have a number of simple things in common which we maybe have never considered.

  1. Diets essentially get you eating less. 

Ever heard of a 5000 calorie per day diet?  Didn’t think so.  Generally speaking every weight loss plan will get you eating less calories than you burn, that’s obvious.

  2. Diets get you focusing on foods.

All diets work well in the way they get you looking at what you are consuming.  The simple exercise of keeping a food diary or eating healthily is good as far as you are focused on what you are eating.

  3.  Diets get you eating healthier

In most cases, diets try to exclude high processed, high calorie foods which we know are bad for us and encourage natural foods.  Again all diets work in different ways but the end game is much the same.  Until the ‘burger, chips and cola diet’ is released this is likely to stay the same.

 

The bottom line.

In the above ways diets are good and like I mentioned above they are successful in promoting weight loss.  What we need is a long term healthy approached based on some of the above.  The best way forwards is good lifestyle, quality exercise and a balanced healthy diet.

 

Want to come and see us for weight loss?  BourneFit offer bespoke fitness and nutrition programs to get you on track for good.  For more info click here

 

7 top tips for health you may have forgotten

It’s often the same in so many aspects of life.  The simple things done well make the biggest difference.  Here are 7 top tips you may have forgotten about which will all improve your health and fitness.

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1. Chew your food properly

How easy it is to wolf a plate of food in 10 seconds.  Chewing food properly not only helps your digestive system but also allows the stomach to let the brain know you’ve had enough.  Plus you have a better relationship with food by enjoying it more.

 

2. Don’t skimp on footwear

From a pair of running trainers to weekend pumps, don’t buy cheap shoes (wife if you are reading this please ignore).  Our foot health is very important for mechanics further up the body and decent footwear really is worth every penny.

 

3. Eat the proper version

In as many aspects as possible, eat the proper full fat, unadulterated version.  It may be higher in calories or you may think it’s bad for your health but it’s probably better.  Diet drinks are a classic example.  Eat full fat yoghurts, butter, everything in it’s least processed version.

 

4. Drink enough

It’s amazing, still how many people don’t drink enough.  Salt intake, hot weather, caffeine and exercise will all affect water levels, so drink up until your wee is pale or clear.

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5. Goals and rewards

Set goals for yourself, be it weight loss, fitness or health goals.  You are more likely to achieve them this way.  A handy way of succeeding is also to build in rewards.

 

6. Have fun

Frisbee in the park or a grueling gym session.  I know which one I’d rather choose!

 

7. Go long and easy

Long steady exercise sessions have profound effects on fitness.  Think long walks down the beach with an ice cream half way or weekend bike rides in the forest.  This way of getting fit is often overlooked, but is probably the way we are designed to work..

 

Want training advice, weight loss or anything related.  Come in and see us…  www.bourne-fit.co.uk

 

Why Girls Should Be Lifting Weights (Sarah’s Story)

It’s nice to be strong…….

Lets clear one thing up for woman that want to get into lifting…….weight training isn’t going to turn  into a muscle clad monster with veins like electrical wire and arms thicker than your legs! This happens to men because of testosterone. As woman have less of this hormone they get all the benefits of weight training without lots of excess muscle. By benefits we mean, improved muscle tone, boosted metabolism, increased fat loss, better posture, higher lean mass, increased bone density, better immune response, and best of all….STRENGTH!

Enter Sarah…….

Last year Sarah returned from Australia with her husband and young baby and caught the bug for lifting weights. Before moving to Oz, Sarah had been coming into the gym with us for our group sessions. She laid down a good foundation in resistance and cardio training in these sessions , though it wasn’t until after having her baby in Oz Sarah really started enjoying lifting heavy weights! Back in England she was doing bootcamps, but hadn’t got back into the weight training like she wanted. So I gave Sarah a proposition…….

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How’s this sound?…..

I thought it would be great to see what you could be achieved in a short time and no junk training! So could we improve the four biggest compound Strength movements with just one and a half hours of training a week?

Lets see what you’ve got……

We made a record of how much Sarah could lift for one rep in Squats, Deadlifts, Clean and Press, and Bench press. We also took her weight and body fat percentages. Over the next month and a half we had two 45 minute sessions a week. We had a Squat and Clean and Press specific session, and a Dealift and Bench press specific session. These sessions were about quality over quantity! We didn’t waste time with empty reps and constant repetition of the same movements. We chose appropriate exercises with weights to build motor patterns, reinforce movements and help areas of her posture that needed correcting….over the 6 weeks WE DIDN’T TEST STRENGTH, WE BUILT IT!

This is where she started…..

pressAt the start, Sarah’s stats were:

Weight: 57.5kg

Bodyfat: 25%

Squat:  55kg

Deadlifts: 80kg

Clean and Press: 30kg

Bench Press: 40kg

 

In 6 weeks……

DeadBy the end Sarah’s stats looked like this,

Weight: 58.4kg

Bodyfat: 24% = 1% drop….which means a 0.6kg reduction in bodyfat, and a 0.3kg increase in lean mass!

Squat: 70kg = 15kg increase

Deadlift: 90kg = 10kg increase

Clean and Press: 45kg = 15kg increase

Bench: 50kg = 10kg increase

 

squatThe outcome…..

Sarah didn’t change her diet, or dramatically change her training, she just added 1.5 hours of very specific, quality strength training. Her body shape has changed for the better, with a massive increase in muscle tone, shape, improved posture and a drop in body fat. The biggest thing to take away from this is Sarah’s increase in strength! She’s feeling more confident because she’s stronger!

 

Where do you start?

Getting started is the hard bit…Don’t know where to start? What you need to be doing? Don’t want to fight your way through all the muscly blokes in the weights section of the gym, or an injury or posture problem holding you back? We can help!

We can take you through the best way to train, show you whats safe and what are the effective ways to exercise with weights. All to getting you on the path to making you a leaner, stronger and better version of yourself

To get started and book in with us at BourneFit for a session just click here