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We wouldlike to welcome back Joanna Chamberlain to the team at Diets Don’t Work. Joanna has been focusing on gym and class work for the past year but now returns to home personal training. She covers both suburban and more central London by living centrally during the week and so is our cover personal trainer for the Clapham, Battersea, Epsom and Sutton areas of south London. Joanna is not only charming and understanding but comes fully qualified at REPS level 3 and as a Premier Global graduate. She can get you to where you want to be with fun and challenging workouts and is looking forward to making you fit and slim very soon!! Look out for her profile which will be returning to our meet the trainers page shortly.
For years scientists have been telling us to follow a Mediterranean diet, but new research shows that there is also an alternative option that is being called the Nordic diet. Olive oil, tomatoes and citrus fruits are replaced with rapeseed oil, berries and Brussels sprouts. Studies have shown that berries like blueberries which flourish in the cold are full of anti-oxidants that prevent heart disease and cancers. Rapeseed oil makes an excellent alternative to olive oil, and vegetables such as Brussels sprouts and cabbage contain high levels of vitamin K which helps the blood to coagulate. Scientists at the university of Copenhagen are now working on a project to develop this Nordic eating plan so that it is superior in both health benefits and taste to the Mediterranean option. Remember that at Diets Don’t Work we include nutritional assessment and help with all block bookings of personal training (that’s 6 sessions or more) so a double sided approach gives you a much higher chance of success.
So finally the clocks have gone forward, low and behold the sun it out (here in the Thames Valley at least)and the birds are singing. Many of you may have been languishing at home in the evenings eating chocolate and other bad things, so take the opportunity to get out and about and enjoy the great outdoors.
Not only does it burn lots of extra calories but it also releases endorphins into your brain making you feel happier and more at ease. Our home personal training takes on a new dimension now that it’s lighter, and wherever possible we get our personal training clients out and about; I personally would recommend the great walk, from the copper horse to Windsor castle, fabulous in the evening light, and also Virginia Water where the world famous collection of rhodedendrons are now beginning to bloom.
So get out there with your dog/bike/trainers/mum/yourself and make your self healthy and happy!!
Yet another personal training success story, and also a very large well done to Catherine Elizabeth, who after completing nearly all her training runs and eating like a champ has finished her first ever half marathon under the target time (set by me!) of 2 hours and 10 minutes. Catherine, from Eton Wick, came to us 18 months ago to get help improving fitness and bum size. She has now lost lots of size around the waist and hips, and likes to show off her full man style push ups on the bar during a night out. I trained her myself for the 1/2, although she still had to do 4 other runs a week without me, nearly all of which she did. We also trained for it in the winter before the clocks went forward again, which makes it even tougher. But all those intervals and sprint work through Slough and the Jubilee river in the dark certainly paid off!!
So well done Cazza, we will be featuring her on our client spotlight page very soon where you can read more about her triumph.
Today we are having a trainer spotlight looking at one of our more recent additions to the personal trainer team at diets don’t work, Cleo Collins. Based in High Wycombe, Cleo is of course mobile and covers personal training clients for us in Beaconsfield, Marlow, and even goes as far as Maidenhead.
Cleo is Premier Qualified, and also has added bonus qualifications in pad boxing, kettle bell instruction, pre and post natal, advanced functional training and sports massage therapy, so whatever your reasons for considering a personal trainer she has all the bases covered. As well as these in depth qualifications Cleo is tremendously supportive and positive, and loves helping people to change their lives getting them fitter and slimmer. Have a look at her profile on our “Meet the Trainers” page.
If the thought of gobbling down lots of sprouts or chewing on some rabbit makes you feel queasier than a trip on a rickety rollercoaster, it could be because of your childhood food memories. According to a new survey, these memories have a huge impact on our tastes in later life with almost half (43%) of people questioned across the UK admitting they have not tried the food that gave them their earliest bad flavour memory again. Smell expert, Professor Tim Jacob, from Cardiff University’s School of Biosciences, said flavour was actually a mixture of two senses – taste and smell – and in many people, these were inherently conservative. “We spend our formative years being fed with things that are sweet and are quite bland,” he said. “Once we have established what foods we need to survive, why change it? We often don’t want to take that risk. “Because of the way our tastes develop, things like olives are an acquired taste but memory and emotion remain closely linked to flavour preferences throughout our lives.” According to Professor Jacob, our childhood palates are not too partial to sour or acidic foods and a taste for salt only develops when we are around six-years-old. “Children’s foods are basically very conservative for biological reasons. But as they grow up it seems some tend to stick with this conservatism even though biologically our tastes change,” he said. “But also our preferences for food seem to stay with us. Babies have a preference for sweet foods.” Professor Jacob’s work at the university involves looking at which sides of the brain are activated by good and bad smells. (From the BBC health page).
So be careful what you feed your children; as a youngster I was brought up on lots of salad and fish based foods (growing up in the Caribbean) and these have indeed become the things that I like the most. Don’t be afraid to try new foods though, you may surprise yourself. Remember also that the main thing with nutrition is to keep it as natural as possible, and to keep it varied while avoiding animal fats and processed foods. Have a look at our free pdf on “nutrition for personal training” on the knowledge page.
Scientists may have found a way to get women more natural looking bigger breasts. Women who are scared of going under the knife may soon have an alternative, as professor Kefah Mokbel, a consultant breast surgeon at the Princess Grace hospital in London is carrying out trials in a new treatment. This new method involves harvesting fatty stem cells from the fatty deposits around a woman’s thighs and stomach and then depositing them into the breasts where they multiply and fill them out. The new technique produces a more natural effect than implants and has been used on women who post mastectomy, but experts say that before the treatment can be given the go ahead as a cosmetic treatment the technique must undergo extensive testing to ensure that it does not itself raise the riskof cancer. Of course if you are that concerned with your looks then a good first step would be to get into shape the natural way, using exercise and good sensible nutrition to look your absolute best: here at diets don’t work we believe that surgery of any sort should always be a last resort, so if you are in need of some trimming and enhancing then we can do it the safe and natural way!
Can you feel it at the moment? If you have been reading this or other blogs, or even better a book, for more than 6 minutes, then your stress levels should have been reduced by 68%. This is the implication of research carried out by the university of Sussex which found reading to be the most relaxing of pastimes, even more so than listening to music, having a cup of tea or going for a stroll. A group of volunteers were made to do exercise and then immediately afterwards were made to engage in the above mentioned activities. Six minutes later their heart rates and muscle tension was measured. Slow walking brought about an improvement of 41%, having a hot drink made a 54% difference, music chilled them out by 61% but the biggest result was after reading, which led to a 68% decrease in tension levels.
As a personal trainer I deal with lots of stressed out people who often find getting a balance between work and home life difficult, and this new research fits in with advice that I give clients; no matter how busy you are, or think you are, taking 20 minutes a few times a week solely for you and no one else is extremely important. Not only will it make you more relaxed, but it will improve your efficiency and success in all the other areas of your life, from work to family relationships. You might think “I can’t just take 20 minutes of, this needs doing or that needs doing, but that 20 minutes will make you better at getting through everything you do, and give you a calmer and more positive perspective. Remember also that structured exercise is also a great weapon against tension and negativity.
Today I am going to start a ten day personal trainer series on how to stay cheerful and positive, and it’s not just based on exercise. New research from the mental health foundation charity show that the mental health of the nation is not great;from economy pressures to family stresses we could all do with ways to beat the blues. These charities have come up with 10 ways to stay positive, and of course exercise is one of them. So here’s number one..
LightboxesThe effect of long winters, some say, can be shortened with the use of lightboxes, which deliver a dose of bright light similar to daylight to alleviate seasonal depression. “Certainly, there’s enough people in the two hemispheres who say ‘thank God it’s summer, I feel so much better’, and that may be because it’s light, or to do with heat,” says Phillip Hodson, a fellow of the British Association of Counsellors and Psychotherapists. “A lot of people swear by lightboxes.” Attitudes to the mood-lifting qualities of light are strong in northern climes such as Scandinavia, which has long, dark winters.
“The fact is, northern winters are pretty long and pretty hard, and if you’re going to die of starvation that’s the time to do it! A light box is something well worth trying. Put it this way, there’s been one in our house for 25 years. My partner has one, and she says it really makes a difference.”
Today it’s the second instalment on how to beat the blues!
2. Get out in the garden
Gardening has often been cited as a hobby ripe for getting people out of depression. That’s because it takes people out of their own thoughts and helps them focus on something that needs their care and attention, says Dr David Harper, a reader in clinical psychology at the University of East London. “You’re feeling close to nature by being outside and nurturing nature in some way. It connects you to a broader world out there. And if you’re growing things, that’s going to give you a feeling that you’re sustaining things.”
This tip today is of course included in personal training at Diets Don’t Work, as in home personal training we are outdoors as often as possible, and in the average week you would be surprised how little we get rained off. Although not quite personal training, gardening is an extremely good form of exercise, and is also very good for the mind, as it is both soothing and satisfing to watch the steady progress of one’s garden.