Welcome to the opening article on the brand new East London Mumsnet blog! Thank you for taking the time to visit us and as a reward please find below a fantastic article from local Personal Trainer and Fitness Expert Kelly Bedford. Prepare yourself for the Kelly's lowdown on the inside knowledge behind getting 2015 off to a healthy and active start.
'New Year invites us all to think about what we would like to achieve during the next 12 months, with many of us setting health and fitness goals as a top priority. It can be hard to know just where to start when another new year rolls around and January presents itself screaming ‘STEP AWAY FROM THE ‘insert vice here’ YOU NEED TO SHAPE UP …NOW!’
If you are stuck on just exactly how to become healthy and fit this year below is a useful set of tips on the best planning methods, diet choices and exercises
The best way to really stick to healthy new year’s resolution is to be organised and make a proper plan. Planning your nutrition is one of the most important aspects of successful eating. I ask my Intervention clients to do their shopping in advance alongside planning and preparing their lunches ahead and to have dinner ready to go or easy to prepare in the evening. This helps avoid last minute panic buys when they’re hungry so they are less likely to make poor food choices
TIP: If you have become addicted to sugar snacking and want to eat better this year then clear you’re cupboards of the treats and replace these with nuts, fruit and yoghurt as sometimes willpower is not enough!
Set a target
Have a very clear dateline for your goals. They should be set at 2 weeks, 6 weeks, 12 weeks and 6 months. Each target should have a specific goal to achieve to avoid drift in your programme.
TIP: When thinking about your goals be really clear on why they are important to you, it also helps to make a positive association with the outcome e.g I want to increase my fitness so that I can get out and be more active with my kids which enables me to spend quality time with them OR I would like to increase my running fitness so I can participate in the 5km Race for Life with my friends and raise money for cancer research.
Don’t over commit
Start your programme with very small steps! I see this time and again with my personal training clients who have overindulged during the festive period, they set themselves up with huge mountains to climb and then feel glum when they don’t achieve their goals
Break your goal down into small pieces and each week tackle another piece e.g I want go running 4 times a week. This is a touch unrealistic for someone who has previously only ever run for a bus.
TIP: Start running once a week and then, the following week, up this to twice a week and so on, in a month you will have reached your target.
If you are a complete beginner try getting out for a total of 30-45 minutes which can be split up into 5 minutes of running and 2 minutes of walking for example, simply adding more running minutes each week.
Diet Tips – getting it right
There is so much information out there about the latest miracle diets, quick fix cleanses and seriously super foods. Let me tell you one thing I KNOW to be true, if you are looking to lose weight AND keep it off, there are no quick fixes, gimmicks or magic diet plans that have ever worked – E.V.E.R. Eating well is absolutely the most important aspect of any weight loss plan, sure exercise is fabulous for body and mind and assists with calorie burning BUT if you are looking to drop pounds you MUST get the diet right first!
I am not going to bore you with endless lists of foods to eat and foods to avoid but instead provide you with a simple and easy way to ensure every plate you consume is a healthy and nutritious meal.
7 MEAL HABITS CHEAT SHEET
Answer each question according to the 7 habits…
1. When did you last eat?
- If it’s been longer than 2-4 hours, it’s time to eat!
Those who eat throughout the day tend to have a lower energy intake compared to those who eat irregularly. In addition eating regularly also supports stress management – both low and high blood sugar levels are a physical stress to the body and can contribute to overall stress.
Oatcakes (2), raw fruit such as carrots, cucumber, tomatoes and fruit such as apples, oranges, pears or peaches are all great snacks. Its useful to keep something handy for when you start to feel those pangs of hunger so you don’t let them lead to poor choices later on.
2. Where is the complete protein in your meal?
Are you about to eat at least 1 serving (20-30g) of complete protein? If not, find some protein. Women have 1 serving and for a man double it.
Chicken, turkey, salmon, mackerel, tuna, cod, prawns, beef, pork, lamb, steak, eggs, cheese, soya based products, beans are all great sources of protein and are essential to a healthy functioning lean body.
3. Where are the veggies?
Are you about to eat at least 2 servings of veggies? Prepare them any way you like, but eat them with every meal or snack. A portion of vegetables is roughly 80g and is equivalent to:3 heaped tablespoons of peas, 2 broccoli spears or a dessert bowl of salad
You can combine oatcakes and vegetables in snacks or you can add tzatziki or humus with carrots/peppers/cucumber etc.Vegetables are rich in nutrients, low in fat, sugar and calories. If you aren’t eating 5 portions a day you are missing out on all their crucial health benefits, vitamins and minerals.
4. Where are the carbs?
If you have fat to lose but haven’t just worked out, put down the white pasta, bread, rice and other starchy carbohydrates.
Opt for wholegrain sources such as oats, quinoa, brown rice or sweet potatoes or a double serving veggies. If you have just worked out then a mix of carbohydrate sources is fine.
5. Where are your fats coming from?
Every day you need some fat from animal foods, from olive oil, from mixed nuts, and from flaxseeds/flaxseed oil or fish oil. Spread them throughout the day but make sure to add them in.
6. Do I need alcohol with this meal?
- Alcohol has 7 kcal/gram
- 250ml either red or white wine = 1 mars bar
Whilst the body is processing alcohol it cannot metabolize any other fuel source and promotes fat storage and dehydration. If weight loss is your goal aim for 0-6 units each week and no more than 2-3 units per sitting
1 unit = ½ pint of beer, a single measure of spirits or a 175ml glass of wine
7. Do I need this much food on my plate?
This is KEY!
We are a nation of over eaters and often pile our plate with too much food often over estimating how much we really need. This week try having two thirds of your usual amount and see how hungry you really are.
The Great Outdoors
Becoming fit doesn’t necessarily mean you have to kill yourself with a crazy exercise regime. Walking, jogging or running is a fantastic way to get outside and get some fresh air as well as being completely free.
London is full of green spaces and big parks and there are many ways to utilize these, you should be aiming to be active for 45 minutes per session and 3 times per week and work at a moderately challenging intensity of 7 or 8 out of 10.
In addition to exercise sessions you should be taking 10,000 steps per day which is currently the suggested marker for health.
A great method for tracking your steps, sleep and exercise with a Jawbone or a Fitbit.
This has worked extremely well for me and I now have most of my clients wearing a jawbone motion sensor wristband!
What is it and what does it do?
The UP jawbone is a wristband that comes in many colours and measures the number of steps you take in a day, your sleep cycles and how many hours you sleep you get, the food you consume and also how many calories you burn per day.
They are a great way to help make sure you are moving enough, eating the right foods for your expenditure and sleeping adequately. For more information click here.
Resistance training circuits
If you are a member of a gym or have a home training space below are 2 fabulous circuits designed for optimum fat loss and calorie expenditure.
Instructions: Perform each circuit 2-3 times taking a 90 second recovery in between each round.
1. Single leg squats x 10 each leg
2. Dumbell row x 10
3. Glute bridges x 10
4. Press up x 10
5. Squat Jumps x 20
1. Front lunge x 10 each leg
2. Hand plank with alternating leg lifts x 20 (keep your body in neutral alignment)
3. Dumbell shoulder press x 10
4. Dumbell dead lift x 10
5. Mountain Climbers x 60 reps
NB: Always warm up before you begin with light cardio and dynamic stretching.
Get professional help and guidance
If you are unsure of where to start with exercise or simply lack the motivation to get going then why not invest in yourself this year and get help from a professional.
I run a fantastic fat loss and fitness 6 week programme called The Intervention.
The Intervention Programme is carefully designed to:
- HELP CHANGE DESTRUCTIVE BEHAVIOURS
- STOP BINGE EATING AND DRINKING HABITS
- STOP EMOTIONAL EATING AND DRINKING
- REDUCE BODY FAT IN UNWANTED AREAS
- IMPROVE MOTIVATION, MOOD AND FITNESS LEVELS
It is an exclusive package that includes the most time efficient and effective personal training methods to drop unwanted fat and a nutrition plan, teaching you how to eat to promote optimum body composition, health and vitality.
Includes 3 x 60 minute personal training sessions per week at a time that is most convenient to you – early mornings, daytimes, evenings and weekends
Includes 2 sessions with a highly sought after behavioural coach to help rid those nasty habits and help get you in great shape - both physically and mentally!
This is not just a 6 week programme, this is a valuable investment for your future as the changes you make that will last long after the programme has finished
*EXCLUSIVE OFFER FOR MUMSNETTERS - 10% OFF THE INTERVENTION 6 WEEK HOME TRAINING PROGRAMME CLICK HERE
*For all bookings made in January for a January or February start date