Seasonal Behavouir & It's Effect On Your Health

A Personal Trainers Opinion On . . . Seasonal Behaviour and Its Effect On Your Health.


Well that’s it folks! Summer is officially over. You can cross your fingers and pray for that much converted ‘Indian Summer’ but chances are the best we are going to get is one last weekend in the mid-teens. Daylight is losing out to darkness and there is often a nip in the air early on. Soon enough the cold will come. We’ll trudge to work through sleet and snow, departing in darkness and returning home in very similar conditions. Welcome to the British winter, a much more consistent and predictable affair than its ‘warmer’ sibling, the summer.

Chances are it wasn’t all bad. You probably got away to a fairer climate, graced the odd BBQ and perhaps chanced a festival or two. But the question is what effect has all this seasonal behaviour had on your health and fitness?

If you’ve kept on top of it all then bravo, well done, but chances are the above have taken their toll on your body and that toned up torso you were sporting at the beginning of the summer is now looking a little rough around the edges.

It’s no secret that many people train to look better, training for aesthetics, as it is called, is no shameful thing. What’s wrong with wanting to look good? That’s why we have our hair cut and styled, buy nice clothes and generally take care of ourselves. It is often the case that people are in the gym working to get that ‘beach body’ training specifically for the summer months so that when the layers come off other people can admire their hard work, for many their body is a canvas, why would you not show this off?

The problem for many is that they start this pursuit too late on. They give themselves a few measly months during spring time and wonder why they don’t get the results they desire. This approach is doomed from the start. As mentioned the summer isn’t often the kindest of seasons on the body, but neither is winter. It is far too easy to slump into the couch when the weather is miserable outside. Forgo the gym for a takeaway or give up a run in the cold wet weather for a warming hot chocolate. Now combine the negative effects that behaviour in both seasons can have upon your health and fitness and you have the recipe for a waistline disaster.

The answer is simple, give yourself a head start! I’m a huge advocate of making your health and fitness a priority in your life. Whether you are training for athletic performance or just to look good with your kit off, you’d do best to consistently work on this and not drop the ball for months at a time. That said the next best thing to do is start your campaign early. Instead of just moving from the beer garden into the actual pub, swap this out for some time on the treadmill, the cross trainer or brave the weather and head out for a run, you’d be surprised to see just how bracing and refreshing the cold air can be. Focus on not just the summer of 2016 but also the summer of 2017, set yourself goals, short term, midterm and long term ones, where would you like your fitness to be in 1 year? How would you like to look in 2 years? These are questions you should ask yourself, and setting goals keeps you motivated.

Use the upcoming weather to your advantage. Keep yourself warm through hard work, set yourself goals, challenge and push yourself. Summer will soon swing round again and you’ll look and feel better than you ever have due to working hard through the winter. Don’t just wish away the colder months, embrace them and get to work on becoming the best version of yourself that you can be.

Here at The Fitness Suite we work all year round to keep our clients healthy and happy no matter the season. Check us out on the following link:

Also keep up to date with our latest offers and promotions here:

Fitness Suite Sponsor Halifax Faxettes

The Fitness Suite is proud to sponsor Halifax RLFC’s cheerleading squad ‘The Faxettes’! The dance team attend every home game at the Shay Stadium in Halifax performing their routines pre match and half time for all the fans and supporters at every fixture. The team consists of 9 girls who all have a passion for dance, this is a great partnership for the Fitness Suite and we look forward to becoming the team’s new sponsor next season. So why not come and cheer on Halifax RLFC and the girls at the shay stadium!

Is caffeine in your diet?

Caffeine is almost an essential stimulant to everybody’s life in busy society that people take without perhaps realising it. Caffeine is most commonly found in foods and drinks such as tea, coffee, cocoa beans, chocolate bars, soft drinks and Energy drinks.


Caffeine is a stimulant drug that affects your brain and in small doses can improve your focus and energy levels. Stimulants like caffeine work on the body in similar ways to the hormone adrenalin. When we are frightened or stressed, the adrenal glands release adrenalin directly into the bloodstream. The results are dramatic and instantaneous, with an increase in breathing and heart rate, accompanied more importantly by a short burst of physical energy to get us prepared for the stimulus faced upon us.


When you take a pre workout supplement you will notice a “buzz” as they contain moderate levels of caffeine. Studies have found that when it comes to exercise caffeine delays fatigue and slows the breakdown of muscle glycogen, so your body has more sugar to keep going. Caffeine enhances your cardiovascular endurance and it keeps you more alert. It can also reduce muscle pain during exercise and it may lower perceived exertion, making exercise feel more comfortable when lifting weights.


Caffeine is a drug and it therefore has negatives associated with it. You can easily build up a tolerance to it so you need more of it to give that desired “buzz”. It is also addictive and very easy to rely on to get you through your workouts. When you eventually decide to stop taking foods, drinks and supplements that contain caffeine you may experience withdrawal symptoms just like with any other drug. These can include tiredness, trouble sleeping and increased anxiety. These can of course vary from person to person depending how much caffeine you consume daily.


A safe amount of caffeine to take is approximately between 200-400 milligrams daily and ideally 20 to 30 minutes before you exercise. Below are the values you need to get the associated benefits of caffeine consumption before a workout.

Chocolate drinks – 30 to 60 mg

Instant coffee – 60 to 100 mg

Drip or percolated coffee – 100 to 150 mg

Espresso coffees such as espresso or latte – 90 to 200 mg

Cola drinks – 35 mg

Tea – 30 to 100 mg, depending on the type and strength of the brew (both black and green tea contain caffeine)

Energy or sports drinks – such as Red Bull or ‘V’ – 80 to 90 mg

Dark chocolate bar – 40 to 50 mg per 55g serving

Have you gained weight after your holiday? See how personal training can help you!

We all know that when we holiday we lose track of our diet and exercise regime. We set off with the best of intentions, having packed our gym clothes but never do they see foreign daylight. Instead they stay tucked in the bottom of our suitcase only to return home unused. After all a holiday is the time to relax and to enjoy time off work or just everyday life.


Unfortunately it is when you get back off holiday that you have to start your active lifestyle all over again, and re start your training all over again. It is extremely hard to enter your training full on after a long relaxed week off; this is why a personal trainer is perfect for you.


There are many benefits to having a personal trainer, you do not need a lot of time in the week to have a personal trainer, a couple of hours a week is perfect. Adding short bursts of intense effort can fire up your metabolism and fast-track results and this is exactly what a personal training session achieves.


 Having a personal trainer is extremely beneficial when wanting to achieve something specific. If your goal is to lose all the weight that you gained on holiday, then this is a perfect solution. Your personal trainer can set realistic results for you and gradually bring you back into your original weekly exercise pattern. We are all aware that is it great to eat whatever you want on holiday and to go out for them delicious meals, this is a major problem people face when trying to get back on track with eating healthy after the holiday buzz. Personal trainers are not only there to help you work out in the gym, but they can also offer advice on what to eat. Your personal trainer will create you a diet plan to follow weekly to get you back on track quickly and effectively.


It is a fact that we all overindulge from time to time, but holidays are always the main cause for this as it is way too easy to get de railed from your healthy eating habits. Getting back on track right away is one of the best ways to deal with the stress that comes from overindulgence. This is the perfect time to grab a personal trainer and start your one to one training! Each healthy choice you make is a reminder to your commitment to being fit and healthy all year round, so make personal training your first step!

A personal trainers view on water

We are all aware that drinking water is better than drinking alcohol and fizzy drinks and that it has many benefits. What exactly are those health benefits of and what role does water play in our bodies. Personal trainers will tell you that adequate and regular water consumption has a lot of health benefits as it has no calories, no fat, no carbohydrates, and no sugar.


The amount of water you consume everyday plays an extremely important role in maintaining a healthy body. All health experts including personal trainers will recommend that you drink at least eight to ten glasses of water a day in order to maintain good overall health. The human body needs water to function properly as almost every cell present in the body needs water.


Personal trainers will tell you to drink water because it helps you to lose weight; water helps to flush out the by-products of fat. Also when you drink water, your stomach becomes full and you do not feel the tendency to eat more food. As personal trainers we will often tell our clients that it does not contain any calories and it is therefore a great replacement for high-calorie drinks such as alcohol, sugary fizzy drinks that often cause weight gain because of the high sugar content.


Water keeps the body hydrated which promotes healthier and younger looking skin. This happens because water helps to replenish skin tissues, moisturises and increases the elasticity in your skin. When the body gets enough water, your skin will feel moisturised and it will look fresh, soft, glowing and smooth. When you regularly drink water it will help reduce the appearance of soft lines, scars, acne, wrinkles and some other aging symptoms.


Water is used by the body to help flush out toxins and waste products that the body does not need. When there is less water in the body, the heart needs to work more to pump out the oxygenated blood to cells and at the same time other major organs also become exhausted. All these factors make you feel fatigued. When your body is active and in proper functioning state, then it gives positive signal to your brain which ultimately boosts your mood and helps you to feel happy from within. A good mood will have a direct impact on your productivity level in the gym. A happier mood instantly means that you can actually lift heavier weights than you usually lift and that you can run for longer on the treadmill.


No matter what you’re your goal is your personal trainer will tell you to drink water for these reasons. Personal trainers will often recommend supplements where your diet lacks. Water doesn’t have to be drunk in its purest form to give you all these benefits. When a personal trainer recommends that you take protein, for example, these can be added with water rather than milk to help improve your muscle growth and repair to still give you all the above benefits.


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Exercise and the immune system

It is known that if you exercise a lot you are bound to boost your immune system. As well as keeping fit and helping get your body into good shape, you are also helping to fight off harmful diseases and common colds.


When you exercise your heart becomes stronger and is able to pump sufficient blood around the body. The immune system is no different and can be boosted. This provides support to the cells in your body responsible for attacking bacteria. These cells work more slowly in people that do not exercise in comparison to those who exercise.


To improve your immune system does not mean that you have to be in great shape or a professional sports person. Going to the gym three times a week or even a walk or run is a perfect way to help build your immune system. Exercising reduces stress hormones, cold risks, gives you a faster immune response and can also improve immunity in aging adults.


So why does Exercise improve your immune system? No one can definitely say for sure but a few reasons are; Exercise increases your heart rate, this means that white blood cells and other components of the immune system circulate around your body faster. This may mean that it could decrease the time in which the body takes to react to potential infections. Exercise reduces stress and stress can prevent the immune system from working well. Also when you exercise your body temperature rises, many infectious diseases cannot handle a shift in even a few degrees, this explains why your body creates a fever to fight infection.


To conclude sufficient exercise with correct breaks will help us to be healthy. Trying to incorporate more exercise into your day will help strengthen your immune system over time.


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A personal trainers view on overtraining...

Have you ever found yourself in the gym wanting to just give up and throw in the towel even though you’ve had a great weeks exercise. Are you mentally exhausted and physically aching all over from past sessions top to toe. Have you lost your appetite and just generally feel really lethargic? If this is a BIG “YES” It sounds like you need some Rest because you’ve been overtraining.

Overtraining is a physical, behavioral, and emotional condition that occurs when the volume of exercise someone performs outweighs their bodies’ recovery capabilities. The most common symptoms of overtraining include decreased physical performance, fatigue, loss of motivation, depression, loss of appetite, weight loss, elevated resting heart rate, increased amount of minor injuries such as sprains and strains and an increase in upper respiratory infections.

There are many factors that contribute to the state of overtraining or what some people refer to as “burnout” including inadequate nutrition, excessive training volume and frequency and insufficient amounts of sleep. Many gym goers make the similar nutritional mistakes that can lead to overtraining rather quickly. An important nutritional concern is consuming an adequate amount of calories. Many gym goers underestimate how much food they need to eat to support their training programme. This will lead to the possibility of weight loss and decreased physical performance when in the gym.

Lots of people have misinformed knowledge of nutrition and seem to have a carbohydrate phobia due to false beliefs that carbohydrates are responsible for weight gain. This is only true if you don’t do anything for a long sustained period of time. An individual who does not consume enough carbohydrates throughout the day will not have an optimal amount of stored glycogen in muscle tissue and liver. This might lead to impaired performance, since carbohydrates are the prime energy source of the human body. Many people might lack dietary fats in their diet due to the false belief that dietary fat immediately converts into adipose tissue. Dietary fats are very important in protection against heart disease and cancer. They can also help increase metabolic rate and fat burning, and the production of hormones such as testosterone.

If you’re really exhausted schedule in a couple of rest days each week and stick to a committed training plan that works for you and your training goals.


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Protein and personal trainers

Did you know?


When you perform resistance training you are deliberately breaking down your muscle tissue in an attempt to make it grow larger and become stronger. However, this is only possible with the presence of muscle building hormones and the right levels of protein. Everyone can build muscle, and, more importantly SHOULD build muscle.


It’s important that everyone has a reasonable amount of muscle tissue in their body but it aids fat loss and improves your strength and posture. However you won’t be able to build muscle without the presence of protein in your diet. Protein is crucial for muscle repair and growth. In a resting state someone with a reasonable amount of muscle definition will burn more calories than somebody who lives a sedentary lifestyle. In order to maintain shape and muscular tone your body has to feed the muscle with nutrients in the form of calories, resulting in fat loss.


When you exercise you shouldn’t spend more than an hour in the gym because you will start to burn muscle fibre. A number of people believe ‘the more time you spend in the gym the more calories you burn’. This is true, however, you will be sourcing energy from muscle and we want to look to develop this instead of depleting it. Ideally we want to use glycogen and fat stores, not protein reserves within the muscle. So when you’re in the gym, make more gains by exercising at a higher intensity.

To work out your recommended daily protein we use the following equation:


0.8g x body weight (Kg) = Daily protein amount (g)


So a 67.5 kg person would input…

0.8 x 67.5kg = 54g protein per day!


However if you are performing regular resistance training exercise (3 or more times per week) you will need a higher rate of 1.8g per kg of body weight.


1.8 x 67.5kg = 121.5g of protein per day!



High sources of protein include:


Chicken Breasts, these contain 21g of protein per 100g serving.

Steak contains 25g of protein per 100g serving.

A boiled egg contains 13g of protein per 100g serving.

Peanut butter contains 24g of protein per 100g serving.

Tuna contains 30g of protein per 100g serving.


If you struggle to get your daily amount of protein you should consider taking supplements such as protein shakes. Protein shakes are a great way to boost your protein levels and are very convenient!


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Fight depression with exercise

Most of us have a general idea of what depression is and the symptoms of depression. The most common thoughts and perceptions of depression include feelings of sadness and generally feeling down about things. Most people think that these feelings only last a few days and that tomorrow is another day... So what can be done to ease the symptoms of depression?


Appropriate treatment is the best course of action but exercise also helps eliviate some of the symptoms associated with depression, so it's important not to slip out of your current training routine. Exercise will help to focus your mind and ease negative thoughts about yourself and things that are happening in your life, as exercise releases chemicals known as endorphins. Endorphins are part of a group of chemicals that naturally exist in the brain and help to alleviate pain and elevate a person's mood and spirit. These chemicals are produced by the pituitary gland and the hypothalamus gland in the brain, which is stimulated during physical activity.


When we exercise our mood uplifts and we immediately feel better about ourselves either during or shortly after a workout. Training in the gym can also help to control your appetite. When you exercise in particular with weights, you are breaking down muscle fibres and using ATP stores in the muscles and liver to fuel your body (ATP is basically stored glycogen). You have a 60 minute window in which to consume carbohydrates and protein after a workout to help you get continued, successful results. By failing to eat after a session your appetite will be thrown out of sync and you’re missing the important stage at which your muscles are crying out for food to help them repair.


The more muscle tone you have the better capability your body is at burning fat. If you don’t eat regularly whilst in training you will be more likely to snack at night time which in turn will lead you to gain weight in the shape of body fat. If this happens it will only make you feel even more depressed and down making the situation worse for yourself. You need to take full advantage of the gym. This is all it could take to get you back on track to a full recovery enjoying the challenges of life once again.


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Let's celebrate

Locals celebrate The Fitness Suites’ second birthday Two years on and the thriving personal training centre is celebrating its second birthday despite the double dip recession. Chris Ball, founder of The Fitness Suite says “We really found a niche that people needed”. Times have changed and more and more people are looking to personal trainers to understand the science of fitness. This social shift, coupled with the desire to be healthier, has “created the perfect environment for us to flourish” says Chris.


Fad diets have always been a favourite of the ‘yo-yo’ dieter however people are now realising that this form of weight loss isn’t sustainable. Infact, the majority of weight loss experienced on such diets usually comes from water. “We must focus on changing the body’s composition in order to increase our metabolic rate and the only way to do that is in the gym”


Chris says. “I created The Fitness Suite back in 2011 when I realised people had had enough of running endlessly on treadmills and not really getting any noticeable results” says Chris, “Fitness is and will always be a science” he goes on to explain. “A lot of people were questioning the cost of personal training, especially in our current climate so I thought that’s it… We will offer bespoke personal training at an affordable cost” and so The Fitness Suite ethos was born. Chris believes the key to success lay in a person’s motivation. “It is the ‘why’ we do something, not just the ‘what’ we need to do” that motivates a person to repeat the same behaviour.


Here at The Fitness Suite all of our personal trainers focus on the whole being: the mind, body and soul not just the body. “If we can connect all three then a person is likely to achieve everything they hope for and more”. The Fitness Suite is located in Elland and is looking to establish a new facility in Leeds this year. The Fitness Suite currently provides Halifax, Huddersfield and the surrounding areas of West Yorkshire with fully qualified personal trainers.


Further information from: Chris Ball 01422 647078


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Do you have the right personal trainer?

A personal trainer is a friend…


After all they are an integral part of your life just like your friends are. If you get on really well with your personal trainer you may well consider them to be a friend. Your personal trainer is shaping your body, advising you about your current eating habits and always gives you motivation and praise. In essence, your personal trainer should be there for you when times get tough. You are committed to them every week and they won’t under any circumstances let you quit! So you need to build and develop a glowing professional relationship between you both. A good personal trainer should want to get the RESULTS you want in order to keep up and build on their growing reputation. This is a WIN, WIN situation for yourself and your personal trainer. But have you asked yourself if you’re happy with your sessions and do you feel you have the RIGHT personal trainer for your needs.


Delving deeper are you that person who favours the lift-'til-you-drop, high-intensity, Go hard or go home, kill me atmosphere, or are you more the in-and-out, short-and-sweet type of individual that likes a nice rest with a lengthy drinks break after a set? If you haven’t said which approach you prefer to your personal trainer in your initial consultation or first session they could read you completely wrong and not give you what you desire.

The RIGHT personal trainer will pick up on the type of approach you want even if you haven’t openly said how you would like to be treated. However what’s better is that they won’t be afraid to mix up their approach towards you if they notice that you’re slipping off track with your training in an attempt to keep things fresh. The point is different people respond better to different approaches, so it's crucial that you look inward and really consider what kind of method works for you and your lifestyle. Do you want to be yelled at each session, do you want your personal trainer to keep you moving, do you want your personal trainer to show you pictures of overweight people to motivate you. Do you want the trainer to jump around and use lots of hand gestures and utilise different tones of voice? Do you want him or her to be sympathetic and caring……the list is non-exhaustive. They may control your fitness and nutrition but you can control the situation. Think carefully about what works for you.


Personality is key

You're going to be spending 2-4 hours each week with your personal trainer, so if your personalities don't match, things most likely won't last particularly long. The RIGHT personal trainer will want to get to know you and create a positive self-impression. They will ask you questions during your rest breaks to help keep your sessions interesting, fun and vibrant. This can vary from your previous exercise history to what you do on the weekends and what you’re interests are to what you watched on TV last night. Once a rapport has been built up between you both you can go further and ask more meaningful questions about one another and share funny stories that have happened in the past and it will just click. The RIGHT personal trainer will be more than just what the title says. They will be a friend, counsellor, adviser and nutritionist two. The good news is if you enjoy being with the person that's training you, you'll be excited about it and you’ll realise that’s the trainer for you.


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Why does your diet fail at weekends?

A lot of people manage to keep on track with their diet during the week, but when Saturday and Sunday come, they let themselves lose it and start eating everything in sight. Thus, the results achieved during the week go to waste!


Of the thousands of people that diet during the week, 90 per cent will fail at the weekend and within the 2 days' actually put additional weight on. So, why are so many of us unsuccessful when it comes to dieting at weekends? Why, once you have failed on a diet, is so hard to try the same diet again the following monday? And why do we put on even more weight after each diet? Why do most diets fail?


Well it is not the diet that fails; if the diet follows the principal of you consuming less calories than you burn it will be successful. But it’s the way the human mind works that’s the problem. As humans we only do any activity for one of two reasons: to move towards pleasure or to move away from pain. Unfortunately to move away from pain is the main driving force for most diets.


Dieting is often triggered by something – maybe clothes no longer fit, a photo or maybe the comments of others – and we got at it with gusto. After some initial success, and thinking that you’ve cracked it, the pressure cooker syndrome kicks in. The pressure cooker syndrome We often start a diet because we’re under pressure to change. We put in great effort and see success – feel better about ourselves, maybe family and friends start to comment on how good we look, our clothes start to fit or we even drop down a size. This reduces the pain we were under to achieve and ‘releases the pressure slightly’.


It is usually at this point that we decide to modify the plan we have been following, maybe we reduce the exercise or start adding things to the diet. The result of this is that we don’t lose weight at the same speed and we start to get frustrated. We keep on modifying but do not do the one sure fire way to success, repeat what we did to start with as that now seems really painful.


Why can’t we start the same diet again, it was successful before? Once the brain knows that a diet is painful, as it means avoiding the so-called pleasures and treats, it won’t go towards pain. So we find going back on the same diet almost impossible. Even if we use will power to start it, if we carry on with the same mindset we will give it up even quicker than we did previously. Why do we put even more weight on? If we enter a diet with the wrong mindset, we set ourselves in a program of deprivation. The brain will do everything it can to avoid pain so our pain threshold for putting on weight will now be less than our pain threshold for being overweight. This means it will take even more pain before we are kicked into action; and this is why we put on even more weight each time following a diet program.


The recipe for success – in five simple steps


1. Move towards pleasure. This is the way to success in any aspect of your life, if we find a way to build something into our lives that is constantly leading us towards pleasure we will want to achieve more and more of it and it will keep driving us on. There is no limit to this approach. Rather than thinking that you must change you start thinking of what success would be like for you. You have to see and feel a really strong compelling reason. It might only be a slight change in mindset but it will make all the difference; something as simple as don’t see food as the enemy and eating ‘diet foods’ you don’t like. Learn to cook and enjoy healthy food.


2. Create the correct mindset To create the right mindset, the first thing is to set a compelling view of what you want the result to be. · Write down every single reason why this MUST happen · Write down every single way you can achieve this · Pick the 20% that will give you 80% of the results and start working a plan around them. · Start taking massive action towards it. If you have large amounts of weight to lose break it down into small manageable sections with goals at each stage. This way you can celebrate every goal along the way.


3. Think nutrition not calories Remember – The body doesn’t understand calories. What the body does understand is nutrition. If you feed the body food full of nutrition such as salads, juices and vegetables it fills the stomach quicker, makes you feel fuller for longer and is usually much lower in calories. Any diet will work as long as you input less than you burn (but this doesn’t mean though that all diets are equal). Calories don’t necessarily fill you and stop you feeling hungry in the same way. Processed foods and other similar foods are often high in calories and low in nutrition. They only fill you in the short term. Obsidian’s very successful approach is all about nutrition. If you feed the body food full of nutrition such as salads, juices, pulses, beans and vegetables it fills the stomach quicker, makes you feel fuller for longer and is usually much lower in calories, helping you to achieving your weight loss goals. The more you can add fruit, vegetables, pulses and beans to your diet the less you will want and crave other foods. Current research shows that diets that limit and eliminate things such as meat and dairy products and replace them with nutritious items like those listed above will help to cleanse the body and help it to control illnesses.


4. Make a plan Write out a seven day eating plan, incorporating the above, which you believe you can stick to for the next week based on the following criteria: · Design your eating around how you normally behave · Identify the times you ate last week when you didn’t need or want to eat. Try to eliminate those completely this week (and more) · Identify the times when you ate out of habit or because you were bored. Try to eliminate those completely this week (and more) · Identify your snacking habits from last week either cut out those snacks OR choose something you can snack on which is healthier · Look at the places you ate last week and see if avoiding those places this week reduces your habit of eating


5. Mindful Eating You can develop strategies to take more control over food and eating. As above, focusing on when we eat, what we’re eating, why we eat and where we eat a longer term change can be achieved. Two of my favourite and most successful techniques include, thinking about a food that we absolutely love and one we detest – then think about the nice item smothered in the horrible one. Most of us then go, yuk, I really couldn’t eat that. This shows us that we CAN change judgement and our thoughts on food – a desire for food doesn’t control us. We decide what we like and we can re-educate ourselves, just by recognising the tricks the mind can play on us and taking control. The second even easier approach is to ensure we’re concentrating on what and how we’re eating – not allowing our minds to be oblivious to it as we watch TV or simply scoff it down while doing something else. Slow down, really taste the food, chew properly, put your knife and fork down in between mouthfuls and really try and look out for the signal from your stomach that it’s full. Even, get into the habit of leaving something on your plate – just to show yourself that you don’t have to eat everything if you’re no longer full.


If you need any further help with creating an eating plan that suits your body type and your lifestyle or you would like to know how we can help you visit the website


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Weight Watchers Vs Personal Training

A new study, published in the June edition of the Journal of Exercise Physiology, tries to determine which approach is better for reducing body-fat: Weight Watchers or working out at a health club.


The Study

43 overweight women (BMI = 25) were given a 12 week membership to either a Weight Watchers centre or to a local health club.
The women in the Weight Watchers (WW) group were instructed to follow the WW program, including weigh-ins, counselling sessions and the WW point system for monitoring caloric intake.
The women in the health club (HC) group were instructed to follow the American College of Sports Medicine guidelines for weight loss.
The researchers monitored the participants progress by measuring body weight (BW),body fat percentage (%BF), intra-abdominal fat (IAF) and subcutaneous abdominal fat (SAF),total cholesterol (TC),HDL-C with sub-fractions, and triglycerides.


The Results

At the end of 12 weeks, the WW group lost 5% (9 lbs.) of their body weight, while the HC group lost only 2.5% (2.9 lbs.).

Great!!! Weight Watchers wins, I never have to go to the gym again.
Not so fast!!!

The lead researcher, Steve Ball, found that a large percentage of the lost weight was lean tissue and not fat.


Not good.


Muscle requires calories to survive. Fat doesn’t. Lose your muscle and your metabolism drops.


It’s not how much weight you lose, it’s how much body fat you lose and where that body fat comes from.


While the HC group lost very little weight during the 12 weeks, they may have improved their overall health picture due to their significant loss of intra-abdominal fat. According to Ball, “these results imply that exercise may have positive influence on the metabolic syndrome despite the number on the scale.”
Ball also determined that the group support offered by Weight Watchers resulted in most of the WW group lasting the entire 12 weeks, while many of the HC participants quit.


“These results imply that overweight, sedentary women joining a fitness centre with the intent of weight loss or body fat change will likely fail without support and without altering their diets,” Ball said. “Nearly 50% of people who start an exercise program will quit within six months.”
“This study attempted to discover what takes place in the real world when overweight women attempt to lose weight.” Ball said. “I think the outcome of the study speaks volumes about the necessity for a multi-pronged approach in order to lose weight, body fat and gain health benefits. I hope that this will be the first in a series of studies investigating commercial weight-loss programs.”


So what does all this science mean?

It means, that if you want to succeed at losing body-fat, improving your health and transforming your body, you need to combine the physical (diet, exercise, injury prevention, balance, neuro-muscular performance, energy system, etc…) and the mental (emotional support, coping techniques, inter and intra-personal techniques, etc…).

That is why good personal trainers are worth their weight in gold. In addition to the fitness and nutrition programming, a good personal trainer can provide the emotional support that their clients need while they are transforming their bodies and their minds.


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Lose 3-5lb a Week

How to Lose Weight and Burn Upto 3-5lbs of Fat Every Week?


Following these steps will be highly beneficial for easy and well defined weight loss without compromising on food or health.


1. Consume food until you are satisfied. Not until you are full or out of breath. The key for this is eating slowly, eating and chewing the food properly. It takes 20 minutes for the food to reach the 1st stage of digestion and hence the brain receives the signal also after 20 minutes. So, it is advised to take a break before taking a second helping, lest you feel stuffed later.


2. Do some form of exercise daily? However clichéd this may sound, exercise increases the metabolism of the body. You are not required to do strength exercises that build muscle, just brisk walking will do.


3. Inner Circle profiles are established for each member based on a number of factors including age, gender and body mass. A customised daily calorific value is set and the software allows you to control your eating habits without compromising quality of foods and health.


4. Eat at least four meals a day from every food group.

The four meals can be eaten in any order depending on your work load and daily pattern. These things can come in to play when one talks about how to lose weight in a week.


A sample of four meals can be chicken, a fish fillet, a banana milk shake and fruit salad. How to lose weight in a week is no longer a worry because this fat loss easy diet will turn your body into a fat burning machine.


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Fad Diets

Summer is almost here and the thought of a ‘lose weight fast diet’ is very appealing, but is it healthy and most of all, does it work?


Here we go again. Your friend just came through the door smiling and holding a piece of paper that you are about to learn is the next best thing since gold. Yes, it’s the latest fad diet. Everyone is doing it, including some of the world’s best known A-List celebrities and you have to do it, don’t you?


Having completed the diet you jump on the scales. You’ve lost 5lbs in a week and you feel amazing. It worked….. Days later the body returns to its normal state and the weight piles back on. But it’s not the diet that failed; it’s our fault we tell ourselves. It must be that oversized portion, or treat that you had days ago to celebrate that caused you to gain back the 5lbs.


These fad diets come and go but the theory remains the same, instant weight loss solutions. But how many of you are all too familiar with the yo-yo effect that these diets have. I’m guessing, most of you could not name or even remember the number of fad diets you have tried over the years. So why do these diets not work?


Quite often in these fad diets, the weight loss experienced is from loss of water in our bodies, not fat. Most of these diets are designed to dehydrate the body in order to get you results quickly. Paired with your desire to lose weight, reinforces the feelings of achievement and lead us into a false sense of security. Secondly, diet is only part of the solution.


Most, if not all of the fad diets I have seen in my life time do not require you to exercise. Exercise burns fuel, exercise burns fat. Ask yourself this question, where did the fat go in a week? We do not think with such logic when it comes to diet. Not because we are uneducated but because most of all deep down, we know they don’t make sense, but we want to believe in it. It’s very easy to fall into the trap that I have described.


But here are five of my key principles that I have been teaching people for years:-

• Portions should be the size of your palm; our bodies do not need any more.

• You should eat every three hours to keep your metabolism awake and burning calories.

• Eat at the same time every day in order to build a routine; this will prevent you missing a meal and reaching for a mid-meal snack.

• Every meal should contain protein. Protein helps to speed up the metabolism and burn fat.

• Eat all your carbs in the morning or afternoon. Carbs are used as energy, and let’s be honest; most of us do not run marathons on an evening.


There is no such thing as good and bad food. Every food means something different to your body. So this summer enjoy everything in moderation and stick to my five principles and you will be dropping pounds in no time at all.


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Fine Art Photographs add unique edge to The Fitness Suite

We contacted Martin Stainsby regarding his outstanding talent in fine art photography. Martin kindly came down and chose 12 of the very best fine art landscape photographs to exhibit inside The Fitness Suite. We were so impressed with Martin's work that we contracted him to capture the true essence of The Fitness Suite. He delived a sensational  portfolio of photographs that we have added to our online showreel. All photographs are available to purchase through The Fitness Suite.


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Personal Training... Is It Worth It?

Think about it this way. A well designed and thought out program is better than pick and mix when it comes to exercise. Our bodies are a science and we must treat them like science. But once you've had a program explained to you is it still worth paying for the services? According to the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, YES!!


The study, by researchers at the University of Brasilia in Brazil, builds on previous studies that have found that people doing weight training build more muscle and gain more strength when they’re supervised than when they’re on their own. In this case, the study compared 124 untrained young men, and had them undertake an 11-week training program with either a coach for every five athletes or a coach for every 25 athletes. Sure enough, the more highly supervised athletes gained significantly more strength in bench press and knee extensor exercises.

As the paper explains, personal trainers “may help to control important training variables such as load, rest intervals, and exercise technique and to provide motivation and psychological reinforcement,” so it’s hard to nail down exactly what’s happening. But the data provide some interesting insights.

One initially confusing fact is that the total volume of weight lifted was pretty much the same between the two groups. On closer examination, what happens is that the less-supervised group picks a slightly lighter weight and lifts three sets in a nice, controlled manner. The heavily supervised group picks a more ambitious target, reaches failure during the third set, and has to stop a few reps earlier. Total volume is the same, but the guys reaching failure get bigger training benefits.


So really you need to ask youself, do i want the most from my workouts. If the answer is yes then personal training is for you.


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Should pregnant women exercise?

Researchers from the Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences at the annual meeting of the American Physiological Society conducted a study on pregnant women. The researchers were aiming to see whether maternal exercise improves the cardiovascular health of the fetus, with the “exercise” group performing moderate intensity aerobic exercise for at least 30 minutes, three times per week. Sure enough, fetal heart rate was lower in the exercise group. Interestingly, the researchers also suggest that maternal exercise could help the development of the autonomic nervous system.


In essence the exercise that the women took part in actually had a postivie effect on the health of the fetus. They were more healthier and more developed in the way the brain communicates with the body.


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