Sandwich, Soup or Salad? A Guide to London Lunching

Choosing the wrong lunch can have a direct impact on your waistline and your energy levels, laying you open to the dreaded mid-afternoon slump that usually has you reaching for biscuits or chocolate in the office. Here’s our latest guide to healthy London lunching at some of the most popular outlets, so that you can choose what’s best for you and your waistline.

 

Pret a Manger

Enjoy: Pret’s hearty soups are the ones to go for. Their tasty Peruvian Chicken soup or South Indian soup with lentils and tomato are packed full of protein and fibre which will keep you going all afternoon and make it easier to ignore the treats in the office. A special mention to the new Crayfish & Quinoa pot which is an ideal snack or side dish if you're extra hungry, as it packs a powerful protein punch Avoid: The baguette sandwiches are best avoided, as they’re very carb-heavy with minimal fibre and your body will burn through the refined white flour pretty quickly, leaving you with the munchies within an hour or two. It’s also best avoided if you're prone to bloating, as high levels of wheat can be hard to digest, especially if you've had a stressful morning.

Crussh

Enjoy: Crussh Healthpots are a great flexible option, as you can mix and match a couple for a super-healthy and satisfying lunch. The Black Lentil and Feta pot and the Superfoods pot are two of the best options, as they're packed with protein, fibre and omega 3 which would definitely boost your brainpower for that post-lunch meeting. Avoid: Crussh soups and their Fit Food Specials are surprisingly stingy on the protein, with only a couple of bits of meat in their chicken soups, for example. This means they won't be very satisfying after a hard morning’s work and will definitely leave you wanting more.

Pod

Enjoy: Pod salads are just brilliant as they really are a proper meal, as well as being inventive and quite delicious. Not only are they packed full of protein, fibre and superfoods, but you have the option to add an extra protein topping. Try the Slow Burner Salad with a falafel topping or the Mango & Cashew Salad with chicken. It'll keep you going for hours. Avoid: Watch out for the Veggie Mineral Pod. It‘s not such a good option as the chicken version, as it’s much lower in protein so, despite the immune-boosting superfood content, it won't keep you going for very long if you have a long afternoon ahead of you.

EAT

Enjoy: EAT’s Hot Pots are probably their best option for a satisfying and healthy lunch. Try the Poached Egg and Bean Hot Pot with ham hock or mushrooms or the Texan Chilli Hot Pot as these contain the best protein and fibre blend to help reduce sugar cravings later in the afternoon. They also have the added bonus of heart-healthy omega 3. Avoid: Pie and Mash. It may seem like a satisfying option when you're hungry, but it’s actually very high in simple carbohydrate that your body will break down quickly, leading to an energy slump in the afternoon. It’ll have a big impact on your waistline as well, as this contains half the daily recommended amount of calories, as well as your total daily allowance of saturated fat in just one meal.

Leon

Enjoy: Leon specialises in brown rice hot pots and low GI sweet potato dishes that get a big nutrition tick, as they'll really keep you going, especially if you're planning to work out later on in the day. Try the Chilli Chicken or the Sweet Potato Falafel box as they're really tasty and come with brown rice that’s full of fibre, as well as containing energy-rich B vitamins and calming magnesium to help you through a difficult afternoon. Avoid: Watch out for the Fish Finger Wrap (especially if you add fries), as it’s quite a starchy option that may provide short-term satisfaction but it’s likely to lead to an energy dip mid-afternoon that could encourage you to reach for the office biscuit tin.

M+S

Enjoy: If you just have to have sandwich at lunchtime, then M+S is definitely the place to go for good quality bread and generous, tasty fillings. For a protein and fibre-rich option, try the Roast Chicken & Salad or the Salmon, Cucumber & Watercress sandwiches as they’ll keep you going far longer than the average sandwich. The small mix and match salads deserve a special mention, as options such as the 3-bean or super wholefood salads offer a really satisfying and healthy lunch. Avoid: Their pasta salads are not so good though, as the spinach & pine nuts or chicken versions are pretty low in protein and really won't keep you going. In fact, it’s best to avoid pasta salads from most supermarkets, as they’re unlikely to be made with whole-wheat pasta and so it makes for a pretty starchy lunch that your body will break down quickly leaving you craving for something sweet by about 3.30pm.

Itsu

Enjoy: Itsu’s Slim Salmon or the Omega 3 Salmon Supreme sushi boxes are the best sushi options, containing a good variety of protein (and omega 3) in the form of salmon, edamame beans and pumpkin and sunflower seeds. The mixed salad adds to the fibre content of the box and makes them a more balanced and satisfying option than the sushi-only boxes. Avoid: Be wary of the Potsu noodles option, as the high carbohydrate content could lead to a post-lunch slump and you don't want to be caught napping by your boss. If you want a hot meal, choose a rice pot instead, as this contains a blend of brown rice and 7 vegetables that will keep you going for longer.

Greggs

Enjoy: Greggs have a new sandwich range which includes some crusty wholemeal bread options. The  Roast Chicken Salad or the Tuna Crunch Bloomer are your best bet here if you want to keep things healthy, as this comes with fibrous wholemeal bread, lean protein and plenty of added salad. It'll keep you going far longer than the refined white bread options. Avoid: The pasties and bakes. They're all high in starch and saturated fat and won't do your waistline or your energy levels any good. They also contain almost 1/3 of the daily allowance of salt, so this is definitely one to watch if blood pressure is a concern.

Subway

Enjoy: If you opt for the turkey breast 9-grain bread Sub, then this will add a healthy dose of fibre, compared to their standard Italian white bread, which is helped by the added salad vegetables. Turkey is especially low in saturated fat, so this is definitely the one to choose, if you're a Subway devotee. A note of caution though: even if you have the wholemeal version, this 6-inch sub is a lot of starch at one sitting, so don't be surprised if you feel a bit heavy and lethargic later in the afternoon. Avoid: The foot-long Chicken Teriyaki Sub with Italian white bread. This is an overdose of refined carbs with almost 100g at one sitting, which isn't helped by the sugary teriyaki sauce. Your body will break this down into sugar pretty quickly, storing any excess sugar as fat cells and leading to an energy slump mid-afternoon. It’s definitely not the option if you want to be at your brightest and best.

Jackie Lynch www.well-well-well.co.uk @WellWellWellUK To book a consultation at BWW, contact Jackie.lynch@well-well-well.co.uk

Cereal Killers

Do you tuck into a hefty bowl of cereal every morning, secure in the knowledge that it’s a much healthier option than a bacon sandwich or a full English? If so, it might be time to think again, because most commercial cereals are absolutely full of sugar. There is increasing evidence to suggest that excess sugar consumption is at the root of a range of chronic health issues such as cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, obesity, as well as possibly contributing to increased levels of cholesterol. And if you struggle with a stubborn spare tyre that you just can’t shift, again, it’s almost certainly a direct result of your sugar intake.

Ingredients

Do you actually know how much sugar is in your favourite cereal? If you don’t, then it’s time to get up close and personal with the label. A quick glance at the ingredients list will probably reveal more than one of the following: sugar, molasses, honey, dried fruits, fructose, brown sugar, raisins, sultanas, glucose, maltose, raw cane sugar, caramel. It doesn’t matter how it’s expressed – it’s all sugar and the body treats it in exactly the same way, which is to store it first as glycogen in the liver and then as fat around the body.

Nutrition data

The next thing to look at is the nutrition data. Food companies helpfully extract out the sugar content from the carbohydrates, so that you can easily see that in your favourite brand there is, for example, 6g of sugar per 30g portion. It may not sound much, but that’s actually one and a half teaspoons of sugar, so it soon starts to add up. It’s also worth noting that the cited 30g portion is a pretty stingy bowlful, so the chances are that you’re having a much larger portion unless you’re carefully weighing it out.

Things get more complicated when you take a look at the carbohydrate figure. All carbohydrate breaks down into one of three forms of sugar in the body: monosaccharides (glucose, fructose, galactose), disaccharides (sucrose, maltose, lactose) or polysaccharides (digestible starch or indigestible fibre). Fibre comes in both soluble and insoluble form and plays a key part in healthy digestion by ensuring a healthy formation and passage of stools.

If we take Special K as an example, a 30g serving contains 30g of carbohydrate, 11g of sugar and 0.6g of fibre. So, we already know that there is roughly 3 teaspoons of sugar in the portion. Once you’ve extracted the fibre from the carbohydrate, you’re left with 29.4g of carbohydrate that will be broken down into sugar by the body. When you add it on to the 11g of sugar that represents over 40g of sugar – the equivalent of 10 teaspoons, which is far more than a can of regular Coke, for example.

What to look for in a cereal

The food companies are absolute experts at marketing their products in such a way that they appear far more healthy and nutritious than they actually are. You may feel that by steering clear of the more obviously commercial cereals such as Cornflakes, Coco Pops or Weetabix that you’re in the clear. But even the ‘healthy’ brown and grey branding of Dorset Cereals hides roughly 3 teaspoons of added sugar per portion, before you even start to calculate the carbohydrate content. Granolas are also a potential minefield, as many of them can also be high in sugar.

If you want a satisfying breakfast that will keep you going all morning and limit the damage to your waistline, then you need to look for an option that is rich in protein and fibre and limited in added sugar. This is the combination which maintains a blood sugar balance, ensuring sustained energy throughout the morning and helping to combat mid-morning munchies.

The most balanced option in the table below of popular cereals is Lizi’s Original Granola, with roughly equal proportions of protein and fibre and limited sugars, and it is the one I commonly recommend to my clients. It wins out over Weetabix, because the protein source is derived from added nuts and seeds, which is a far more nutritious option than wheat, although it should be noted that Weetabix is fortified with B vitamins and iron which could be important for families operating on a budget and/or struggling to encourage children to eat a balanced diet. However, the reality is that all of these options could do with a bit of help.

If cereal is a quick and easy option for you in the morning, then it’s understandable that you’d want to continue with that, although you may choose to revise your choice of product, based on the data below. Once you’ve selected the one that suits you best, then it’s a simple matter to boost the protein and fibre content by adding a generous tablespoon of pumpkin, sunflower and ground flax seed to the serving and then you’re good to go: a low sugar, protein and fibre-rich breakfast that will keep you going all morning and be kind to your waistline!

1/4 of sugar is roughly equal to one teaspoonJackie Lynch

www.well-well-well.co.uk

@WellWellWellUK

To book a consultation at BWW, contact Jackie.lynch@well-well-well.co.uk

Learning to See the Aura Event

Hello, I am Daniele (Daniel Pilates teacher) I would like to invite you to attend a special event organized for the first time ever in the Uk by the Strucker institute of Germany.

I have had the pleasure to meet them and I highly recommend their event. Here’s what this first meeting is all about in their own words...

Every person has an energy field that surrounds him. This is commonly referred to as “Your Aura”. All your personal information, past and future events, skills and problems of physical and spiritual nature are represented in your aura as vibrational patterns.

Constricting thought can be identified in the form of energy blockages in your aura. Through simple exercises they can be perceived and resolved, thereby enhancing your sense of personal joy and boosting personal vitality. These exercises will help you grow and expand your nature and perceptions. This is a deeply personal process of development which will rejuvenate the very essence of self within you.

The basic training begins with an introductory weekend. This is followed by a total of ten days spread over a year.

Event details

You can come at 3pm to 5pm for free for an explanation of what the method is all about... then if you like what you hear, you can stay from 5.30pm to 7.30pm and have a direct experience of some of the exercises. The cost of the second part of the event is £20.

Hope you can make it, if you can let me know at danbnow@live.co.uk or just come on the day.

Thank you.

"Non Spiritual" Spirituality Retreat - Your luxury one week retreat with Daniele Boido.

Reconnect with yourself with peace and nature in the most remote and beautiful setting in the Scottish Highlands. Further information on this 7 nights in the luxurious Alladale Wilderness Reserve is available here.

Your Club Manager – the Channel Swimmer!

Myself and the rest of ‘Team Squid’ successfully swam across the English Channel in a time of exactly 13 hours.  In doing so we raised over £15,000 for the charity Aspire.  I would like to thank all BWW members and my colleagues for their support and generous donations, it was a wonderful experience and one I will never forget!

I started at 4.13am in the dark (very surreal) and reached France at 5.13pm to a big cheer and amazing feeling of elation and sense of achievement.  We had dodged jelly fish and tankers to make it in a time we are extremely pleased with.

We are now officially ‘Channel Swimmers’!

If you are training for a specific event or challenge, please let us know and BWW will be proud to support you!

Eat Yourself Fit – How to Avoid Everyday Exercising Errors

If the Commonwealth Games coverage has inspired you to get on your bike, put on your running shoes or actually use the gym membership that you pay a fortune for, then it’s important that your efforts don’t go to waste. Whether you’re going to the effort of exercising regularly or are undertaking an intense training programme for a specific event, how and when you eat is hugely important. Sports nutrition is a complex (and highly individual) area and with so much contradictory information out there, it’s hard to know exactly which approach to take to maximise your performance and results. Here are three key areas where people commonly go wrong:

Exercising on Empty

It’s not unusual for people to exercise first thing in the morning or after work, when it can be hours since their last meal. The problem here is that blood sugar will be low which results in the release of the stress hormone cortisol. Excess levels of cortisol will impact your training and may encourage the body to burn muscle instead of fat. If you exercise regularly without achieving the results you're seeking, this might be the problem.

While nutrient timing is especially important for endurance or speed training, just maintaining steady blood sugar levels throughout the day can make all the difference for the average gym-goer. You can do this by ensuring a blend of protein and fibre with every meal and snack, avoiding long gaps between meals and limiting your intake of sugary foods and refined carbohydrate. If your last meal was several hours earlier, a small balanced snack about an hour before your workout could make it immensely more effective.

If you’re undertaking serious training in preparation for a specific event such as a triathlon or a marathon, your nutrient timing needs to be far more precise if you want to enhance performance and reduce the risk of injury. A carb-rich pre-training meal roughly 2 hours before you start will make sure that you’re not running on empty, and making the most of the 45-minute recovery window after intense training is crucial. This is when your muscles are the most susceptible and will benefit most from the nutrients. A balanced protein-carb drink such as chocolate milk or ground hemp seed mixed into fruit juice will do the trick – there’s no need to spend a fortune on branded products. This can be followed by a recovery meal within 2 hours of training.

The right levels of protein and carbs at the right time can make all the difference for both the serious and the occasional athlete.

Using Sports Drinks, Powders and Other Concoctions to Enhance Performance

Sports products can be relevant if you’re exercising for hours at a time at an extremely intense level, but you really don’t need them if you’re working out for about an hour. Gels and sports drinks are full of sugar, with good reason, as they can be very helpful for endurance athletes who need that level of glucose. Not so good though if your weekly workout is designed to keep you in good shape, as excess sugar will go straight to your waistline, defeating the purpose of all that effort. At best you’ll just burn off what you ingest, which leaves you exactly where you started before the workout.

A note of caution: a number of these products also contain a range of additives, stabilisers and sweeteners, which may actually end up slowing down your performance, as these will go straight to the liver for processing, diverting its attention from energy metabolism at a crucial time. Make sure you know exactly what you’re putting into your body and why, how or if it might help

Insufficient hydration

Just 5% dehydration can result in 15-20% loss of energy. That’s a significant amount if you’re undertaking intense training and have a specific performance goal in mind. The best way to assess how much water you should be drinking during intense and lengthy training sessions is to weigh yourself naked before and after a typical session. For each pound (0.45kg) of weight loss through heavy sweating, you need to be taking in about 450ml of water.

For example, if you drank 200ml of water during the session and lost 2lb (0.90kg), you would need to factor in an extra 900ml of water, spread across the session, to ensure proper hydration.

More standard exercise such as basic gym work or classes doesn’t require such a technical approach. Once simple way to monitor hydration levels is to keep an eye on the colour of your urine: you should be aiming for a pale straw colour most of the time. If it’s too dark, then that indicates dehydration. Completely clear suggests you may be over hydrating, which can affect mineral balance in the body.

While sports nutrition has some basic guidelines that will work in many cases, it is increasingly recognised that a personalised approach is the most effective way to get the balance right, which is why so many athletes seek specialist nutrition support. If you’re struggling to achieve the desired results from your training, you may benefit from a private consultation.

For more details click here or email Jackie.lynch@well-well-well.co.uk

High Intensity Bodyweight Interval Circuit Blast & High Protein Breakfast

I moved to BodyWorksWest as a trainer three months ago today so thought it only right to mark the day with the launch of a brand new to BWW High Intensity Bodyweight Circuit class. This style of training is very much suited to my specialist way of training and conditioning clients.

During the class, members of BWW really got to challenge themselves and push their limits using a variety of different exercises and working at a very high intensity with short rest periods. This benefits members by keeping their heart rate increased which enables body fat burning for up to 48hrs after the class and helping increase speed while strengthening all the major muscle groups giving members that 'toned look'.

The feedback from all the members of the class was excellent as they really felt they had physically challenged themselves and knew they had been involved in a "proper workout" So it was only right that I laid on a high protein breakfast (including baked Turkey, egg whites, spinach and cheese muffins and a chocolate & fudge protein brownie for dessert) for members to devour straight after the class to aid with muscle repair and recovery.

If you require any further information or would like to train with me, please get in touch with the club. And don't leave it too late to book with reception for next Wednesdays class as spaces are very limited and you never know what surprise is on the menu for next week... wink

Have a great bank holiday and see you soon. Raheem

Here are some sneak peaks at what's on offer in Raheem's HIIT class!!

 

Raheem Dauda - BWW Personal Trainer

To find out more about Raheem or his HIIT class which runs every Wednesday at the club from 8.00am, please contact Lewis at lewis.cooke@bodyworkswest.co.uk

Six Pack Abs Vs Core

“Look at that guy with the great abs... he must have amazing core strength!"

Have you ever heard that? I know I have as a trainer. That same guy couldn’t hold a plank let alone do any core exercise correctly. This is because of an amazing diet, possibly combined with great genetics. But mostly the diet part.

Your rectus abdominus, or “six pack” pretty much looks like that without doing much work. The muscle has the appearance of six segments in order to allow proper motor function during flexion of the spine. yet to see this shaped muscle, takes a very clean diet along with proper exercise programming. I know this is going to be a surprise for most of you because until the day I am not able to PT any more, we will always be fed TV commercials and endless magazine articles on fancy equipment and Ab exercise routines. DON'T WASTE YOU'RE TIME AND MONEY! The appearance of the six pack is only there with the disappearance of the fatty tissue around it.

Good news!! Your six pack abs are there, it’s just hiding under a layer of fat!

So why bother training you're core? 

 As an experienced trainer I know one thing to be certain; You want those six pack abs? You gotta move more and eat better.

'You're output should be greater then you're input'

Developing a strong core will allow you to have the best body to work with. This means we should be more concerned about longevity in the gym and make our body as solid and injury resistant as possible. This will allow us to stay on that road to goal achievement as safe as possible and as long as needed.

There are so many ways to activate the core that go well beyond the crunch and sit-up. And for your information those crunches are probably making you look fatter… Seriously! go stand sideways in a mirror. Look at the mirror, now stick your butt out and belly out at the same time. Looks funny? Well Ab crunches in general, are going to make you look more like that than the nice flat look you were going for. I promise!

Core conditioning improves posture, which contributes to a trimmer appearance increasing our confidence and may even grow us an extra inch or two. Developing core muscle strength will also boost the effectiveness of workouts and reduce the risk of injuries that sideline our efforts to stay in shape.

'Imagine your body like a strong oak tree' You're head as the bush, you're arms as the branches and legs as the roots.'

If you have ever had physical therapy to treat low back pain, you’re probably familiar with the concept of strengthening the core — the muscles in the abdomen, lower back, and pelvis that lie roughly between the rib cage and the hips 'Think of a ladies corset'. The strength and coordination of these muscles is important not only for sports and fitness routines but also for daily life — for example, reaching up to a cupboard, lifting a child, or putting a seat belt on.

Our problem is we've become LAZY! Don't get angry.. Not always intentionally! but also because of work commitments,driving and comfy sofas etc.

When we work our core muscles this stabilises the spine and will help create a firm base of support for almost every movement.

In my fitness experience I have trained with some big guys, most of them with a massive set of legs. But when they put that loaded bar on their back and try to squat a ridiculous amount of weight you can actually see their lower back wanting to snap! This causes them to lean too far forward likely hurting themselves and potentially causing permanent damage.

'You cannot fire a cannonball from a canoe'

Exercises that strengthen abdominal and other core muscles should be part of an overall fitness plan at least three to five times a week.

To be safe and effective, core muscle strengthening exercises require proper alignment and progression from one type of exercise to another — adjusted to your body and fitness level. So you may want to ask my self or one of the other fitness professionals for help in planning a program for you.

Start by learning how to “draw in”. Here’s what you do:

Sitting, standing, or lying on your back, gently but firmly tighten the abdominal muscles, drawing the navel in toward the small of the back. The tailbone should be slightly tucked. (BRACE) the muscles, as if you were preparing to take a punch in the stomach. Practice holding this position for 10 seconds at a time while breathing normally. Once you get the hang of drawing in, start doing some core exercises.

Below are just a few exercises that can help strengthen core muscles. Concentrate on performing the exercises correctly, not on the number of repetitions or how quickly you can do them. And don’t forget to breathe!

Plank

Lie stomach-down on a mat, resting on your forearms. Tighten your abdominal muscles, and press up so you’re balanced on your toes and elbows. Don’t let your hips sag or stick up: your body should be in a straight line from head to heels. Hold for 20 to 30 seconds; then lower and repeat a few more times. Work up to holding the plank position for 60 seconds.

Bicycle

Lie flat on the floor on your back. Place your fingertips at the back of your head. Tighten your abdominal muscles, bring your knees up to a 45-degree angle, and lift your shoulder blades off the ground. Turn your upper body to the left, bringing the right elbow toward the left knee and extending your right leg. Switch sides, bringing the left elbow toward the right knee. Continue this pedalling motion, slowly, for a total of 12 to 16 repetitions. Rest and repeat. Avoid pulling on the neck.

Stability ball - Arm and leg raise on the ball

Because the ball is intrinsically unstable, core muscle activity is greater when you perform certain exercises on it than when you perform the same exercises on a stable surface.

Lie over the ball stomach down, so that your hips are on top of it and your legs are straight. Toes and fingers should comfortably reach the floor. Tighten your stomach muscles, then lift your right arm and left leg. Hold for five seconds; rest a moment; then repeat with the left arm and right leg. Do eight to 12 repetitions.

Implementing even these basic exercises into your training schedule on a routine basis, will go some way to helping prevent injury, increasing full body strength, and as mentioned, helping you attain that much desired 6 pack!!

Look out for more articles on core training where we'll take you through more advanced coe Workouts for those who have already mastered the basic moves.

Michael Fireman - Personal Trainer at BodyWorksWest

If you would like more info with regards to Michael, or the Personal Training service we offer at BodyWorksWest, please contact Lewis at lewis.cooke@bodyworkswest.co.uk

The mindful personal trainer part 1 (postural analysis of kyphosis)

Being a Personal Trainer is not just about prescribing any exercise you can think of, throwing them into a workout just because they are of great difficulty and trying to exhaust your client. There is far more to it than that. I believe that every training plan should have a purpose, therefore every training session should have a purpose and as a result, every exercise in every session should have a purpose. Especially when you have been unfortunate enough to have picked up an injury. Being a Personal Trainer is not just a job for me, it is a profession and one which I am greatly passionate about. When I see a new member or client for the first time I perform a general health screening and consultation as standard, I listen to their goals, analyse their mobility, their posture and then set targets. A mindful trainer should be a master at conducting training schedules that will not only achieve their client’s personal goals but also give them what they need. As a Personal Trainer I am constantly analysing clients' progress, in particular posture and mobility. These are two markers of health are extremely important to monitor as bad posture and poor mobility almost always result in incorrect technique, which inevitably will amount to an injury of some degree. We'll take a look at some of the most common postural imbalances that occur in the spine and that both Physiotherapist and Personal Trainers regularly encounter. As you can see from the image above there are three common postural imbalances in the spine with the image furthest left being the anatomically correct position for the human spinal column. For the purpose of this article, we will solely be focusing on Kyphosis, often referred to as (hunch back) this postural imbalance is amongst the most common and one of the easiest to spot. You will notice:
  •  Hunched upper back
  •  Head tilted forward and down towards the ground
  •  Internally rotated shoulders
  • General forward tilt when walking
  • Slouch when seated (not through choice)

Kyphosis

Kyphosis occurs in the Thoracic region of the spine or mid section of the spine. The Spine has four sections and with it, four natural curves; The Cervical, Thoracic, Lumbar and Sacrum. The second section, the Thoracic region of the spinal column, is the largest of the four and consists of 12 vertebrae. An excessive curvature of this section of the spine is the condition referred to as Thoracic Kyphosis, with the general public often calling it a hunched back.
kyphosis kyphosiskyphosis  kyphosis
This condition for most people is very easy to spot, however here is a quick and easy method that I have often used to actively measure an individuals' degree of Kyphosis. It’s a method I use to visually and statistically highlight improvements in posture. I call it the legs up test. You will need;
  • A clear matted area
  • A wall clear of plug sockets and other obstacles
  • A Tape measure or ruler
  • And if possible a camera to take a picture.
  • Last but most importantly you will need a friend to take two measurements

Fig 3- The Legs up test

  • Lay on your back with your bottom as close to the wall as possible
  • Straighten your legs all the while keeping your bottom and back on the floor
  • Keeping your legs straight, place both palms face down and relaxed on your belly button
  • From here ask your friend to measure the distance from the floor to the top outside of both left and right shoulders.
  • If possible take a picture for visual reference (date each image so you can notice difference)
Please be sure to make a note of the shoulder measurements so that you can refer to them at a later time.

Breakfast; The most important meal of the day?

You often hear said that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. But is this true? Being the good skeptic that I am I never take anything as being fact unless there is good evidence and a recent study provides us with some in relation to the breakfast question.  

The  study in question looked at 467 teenagers who were asked to fill out a food frequency questionnaire and keep a 7-day food journal. Both  were verified by the parents and registered dietitians for accuracy. Body mass index was calculated for each subject and percentage body fat was measured.  About 16% of subjects were overweight and 7% obese. Interestingly it was observed that the overweight and obese subjects tended to eat a smaller proportion of daily calories at breakfast and also reported being hungrier.

It was also observed that those who ate a "full" breakfast had an average daily intake of 350 fewer calories per day than those who did not. A "full" breakfast was deemed as providing 25 percent of the day's total calories and consisting of at least four food groups.

The researchers further found the subjects who typically ate a "full" breakfast consumed more healthy monounsaturated fats and fiber and less saturated fats and cholesterol each day than those who did not eat a "full" breakfast

So there you have it, it may indeed be a good idea to breakfast like a king. You will tend to eat healthier through out the rest of the day and in the long run it shouldn't have an impact on your weight.

Reference:

Breakfast quality and its relationship to the prevalence of overweight and obesity in adolescents. Nutricon Hospitalaria, 2011, 26 (5) 

Sunday 19th Jan 10AM: Olympic and World Champs group cycling session

Get your cycling shorts on and take this opportunity to relive the British Cycling Glory of 2011 & 2012 and have a great workout at the same time.

Ride with our cycling gold medalists in a unique 60 minute audio visual experience that's not to be missed.

On the track you’ll take part in the elimination race, the sprints, the keirin and the team pursuits with GB gold medalists.

To finish you’ll ride the last 5km of the 2011 cycling World Championship Road Race and follow Mark Cavendish to a glorious victory on the line.

Dont miss out!