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You can have your cake and eat it!!

personal trainer near me

Over the years my approach to weight loss has changed, having competed in physique comps for 5 years my dieting approach was quite rigid and I only gave advice based off my own experience.

What I have learned these past few years is that the bar I set for members was to high. My focus and drive was too much and they needed a more relaxed approach to healthy eating and training so that they could achieve results and stay the path.

I realized that you don’t have to be super strict and cut out everything you love in order to get results.

In saying that if you want great results then the sacrifice has to reflect that, you can’t put in minimal effort with training and a lousy diet and expect a massive transformation.

This year alone many of our members have achieved a balance between training hard, healthy eating and enjoying meals out. They have lost weight, increased their fitness and regained their health without having to go cut out everything they enjoy – in other words they have found a way to have their cake and eat it.

We encourage hard work and we encourage a relaxed approach to diet, but the more you train the more you can eat/drink. It’s not the normal approach but it’s one we have found works in giving members freedom to choose and to enjoy life.

It’s about finding a balance that works for you, that ultimately leads to you getting the results your after without having to go down the restrictive/fad diet road.

Weight loss isn’t complicated

Just do the basics well (link to doing the basics right)

You don’t have to go on a severely restricted diet

You don’t have to become a recluse – afraid to go out in case that one meal makes you put all the weight on again.

You can have a social life – you just have to make sure you put in the hours of training and healthy eating in and around those areas of your life.

You can eat ice cream and still lose weight – if its balanced and adjusted for in your meals.

For more information on our 30 day Kick Start  or contact us on

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clean eating, healthy living, health and wellbeing

Being on a diet doesn’t have to mean that you can’t have a social life and have fun.

Actually I hate putting people on diets as they just imply misery and restriction.


Balance is key for long term results and yes you will have to make some changes, maybe eat less, maybe eat more vegetables, maybe eat less take away, maybe drink less alcohol – BUT you don’t have to give up everything you love to get results. You just have to be mindful, think ahead and be prepared.


Some tips on how to eat out while losing weight (I don’t want to call it a diet)



If you know where you are eating download the menu

Look at what is available

Identify the leanest options

Look at the meal breakdown

Decide what you will eat ahead of time

Eg Salmon and greens, or steak and veg



Doing this will allow you to eat more calories when your out.

You can also eat less on other days in the week so cater for your night out.

I often give clients a weekly calorie goal and after the weekend whatever is left is their quota for the week. This is quite extreme for some



Don’t over think tracking your food. When you’re out you won’t be able to be 100% accurate and tracking is never perfect. What you will learn over time is the portion sizes, what is in them. Just don’t over indulge too much as more often than not you end up regretting it.



One rule you can use is to be on it with your eating 85% of the time so that you can enjoy social occasions.

Don’t go crazy and eat everything in sight as it may undo your results and normally that’s a sign that your diet is too restrictive and hard to sustain.

I normally opt for a main with wine, or if I fancy a starter I split it with my husband as I don’t really need all of it.

If the meal comes with chips or sauces I just ask for more veg and the sauce/dressing on the side as they can be calorific.

If I want a dessert again I normally split it with my husband or decide do I really want this or am I ok.




Eating out with family and friends should be a fun social activity, don’t be so worried that it will ruin everything. If your prepared, you have planned ahead and know what you want then there is really nothing to worry about. If you don’t go crazy and be mindful of the choices you make throughout the week to allow you to go out guilt free.

Enjoy the night out, enjoy the experience.

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healthy recipes, clean eating, fat loss

In Australia my favourite chocolate bar is a cherry ripe. They don’t sell them in the UK so have tried my best to recreate a healthier lower calorie version which worked really well.

200g dark choc 70%
50g Rice cereal
40g Salted popcorn
30g Desiccated coconut
100g Dark choc dried cherry mix

Line a square or rectangle cake tin or Pyrex dish with baking paper
Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water
Bottom of bowl not touching the water
In another bowl put the rice crispies, popcorn, coconut and cherry choc mix and stir until combined
Add the melted chocolate to the mix and stir until everything is coated
Put the mix in the lines tray
Cover with cling film and put in the fridge for at least 2 hours
Turn it out onto a board and cut into 20 pieces

Calories total 2064kcals (myfitnesspal)
Carbs 200g
Sugar 122g
Fat 119g
Protein 29g

Per piece 103kcals
Carbs 20g
Sugar 6.1g
Fats 5.95g
Protein 1.45g

healthy recipes, Clean eating, fat losshealthy recipes, clean eating, fat loss

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So often we are looking for the next big thing that will finally help you lose weight.

We hold on to the latest fad and say this time it will work for me.

I will stick to it – no matter how extreme it is.

I talk a lot about basics and keeping things simple – in my experience we need to simplify things and get good at them first.

Below are some basics to follow as you start your journey. Some tips to help you lose weight, stay focused and get back on track.

Do these consistently and do them well – your results will follow.


1.Don’t focus on what the scales say


Letting the scales be your guide is a very risky choice when tracking weight loss. Your body can fluctuate in weight daily depending on fluid, what you have eaten and the time of day. You may be losing weight but holding onto water.

Why not try taking pictures and body measurements such as waist and hip as well as weight to track progress.

Do it monthly at the same day and time to avoid any unwanted changes.

Try not to focus on the weight loss but the process needed to get the result you are after; such as prepping your meals, training 3-4 times a week, getting good sleep etc.

Being obsessed by the scales only leads to confusion and stress and knowing what you weigh on a daily basis will not make you get there any quicker.

It will end up ruining your day and tacking you off track


2.Make sure your eating the right amount of calories


While eating in a calorie deficit will lead to weight loss be mindful that too big a deficit may lead to greater hunger, fatigue and weakness when training.

Trying to eat too low could also lead to a drop in nutrients required to maintain optimal health.

You may also have a bigger urge to eat and if you aren’t completely focused this can lead you to binging on other foods that are counterproductive to fat loss.

If you do this often enough it will ruin your efforts.

A way around this may be eating in a smaller deficit, you will still lose weight but you will also be able to stick to it better and get better results.


3.Being accurate in reporting what you eat


So often we under estimate how much we eat or completely forget what we have eaten in a day, then get upset when we don’t lose weight.

We need to be in a calorie deficit to lose weight and sometimes we can over eat without realising it even if the food is healthy.

Monitor your portion sizes especially with fats and carbs as they are easy to over eat.

If need be keep an accurate food diary for a few weeks to see if you are over eating without realising.


4.Start training


Diet alone can lead to weight loss but the combination of right eating and right training will always lead to better and faster results and it will go a long way to making your fitter, stronger and healthier.


5.Lift weights


Lifting weights doesn’t have to be all heavy weights that you associate with body building.

Weight training is key to developing strength, retaining and building muscle mass, increasing bone density and providing the body with shape.

Adding weight training to your exercise 2-4 times a week will also help you lose more weight when combined with a healthy diet.


6.Be realistic in how many calories you burn through exercise


Too many times I have heard the words ‘I trained today so I can eat what I want’.

Unfortunately this is rarely the case.

You cannot out train a bad diet, as much as you think you are exempt from this statement; for most it simply isn’t true.

Yes training more allows you to eat more but you have to realistic in how much extra you can eat and still lose weight.

If you want to lose weight being in a calorie deficit is your goal.

Training allows this to happen but so does moving more and increasing your NEAT.

Try to avoid rewarding yourself with food for the simple act of going to the gym.

It will hinder your results and pave the way for some really bad habits that in the long term will only hold you back from achieving your goal.


7.Eat more protein


Increasing protein intake has many benefits for health and weight loss.

It makes you feel fuller; therefore you eat less overall.

You burn more calories just to digest it (thermic effect).

Helps maintain muscle mass

Boosts your immune system

Try reducing your consumption of processed and refined carbs and replacing them with higher protein meals.

Rule of thumb if you increase something in your eating you need to take something away to balance it out.


8.Be mindful of fat intake when on a low carb diet


While low carb diets do work for fat loss (alongside many other diets) you must be mindful of how much fat you eat.

Just because you cut carbs down and you have been told to increase fats doesn’t mean you eat them in abundance.

They have more calories per gram than carbs (9kcal compared to 4kcal) so they need to be eaten in moderation to ensure your still in a calorie deficit.

Rather than upping the fats too much, aim to increase your protein in the absence of carbs.


9.Eat more fibre


Fibre is often not considered when losing weight but its key to optimal health and fat loss.

It helps with your digestive health, makes you feel fuller and therefore eat less overall.

Be sure to include high fibre foods in your day-to-day eating plan.


10.Are you really hungry?


An easy way to over eat is through boredom or bad habits you have gotten yourself into.

This mainly occurs mid afternoon and late evening; but can happen anytime really.

9 times out of 10 you’re not even hungry; you’re bored.

You reach for the cupboard almost in a trance like state and stuff your face with the first thing you see.

You don’t even register that you have eaten anything.


Sound familiar?


A good way to combat this is –

  • Have a pre-planned snack that you can have if you feel the need.
  • Hide all the tempting things in a cupboard that makes it that little bit more difficult to get to.
  • Have a hot drink like tea and some fruit


11.Have realistic expectations


You must be realistic about what you need to do in order to reach your goal.

You must be realistic about your current life situation, stress levels, availability to train, prepare food, family obligations or anything that may distract, slow down or prevent you from reaching your goals.

You have to take the other areas of life and put them into context and determine if you have to adjust your expectations in reaching your goal at this point in time.


If you want a beach body in 3 months and have to lose 2 stone – but can only train 1-2 x a week, have 3 kids and a fulltime job then reaching that goal is going to be more challenging and maybe not realistic –


On the other hand


If you can train 4-5 times a week, have no kids, work full time but have time to invest in food prep then yes its very realistic.

If you’re the mum of 3 then maybe the goal is to train 2 x a week, move more, eat healthy, eat less junk and get the kids and husband involved in the process.

You may not lose it all, but you will still lose weight, your family will be healthier and you will be much happier as you achieved a result but didn’t burden yourself with the pressure to hit a target that wasn’t really achievable in the first place considering your current situation.


12.Hit and Hope – failing to track anything you eat and hoping it will achieve a result.


I am not saying you need to weigh and record everything you eat, but you do need to have some idea of what your eating in order to see if it works or not.

You can still overeat healthy food and take yourself out of a calorie deficit.

You can track how much protein you eat, how many carbs you eat, how much bread you eat, how much junk food you eat and make changes according to the results your getting.

The more information you have about what works and doesn’t work for you will help you in the long term.


13.Drink less calories


Another slippery slope I see is making the mistake of drinking too many calories in the form of juices, soft drinks, lattes, frappes etc

These are usually full of calories that you could be eating rather than drinking.

Be mindful of what you drink – most coffee shops have the calorie content of their beverages on display so check the board and add these into your calories for the day.

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Fats – Why we need them and What types we need to eat

Fat gets a bad wrap when it comes to weight loss and health.

It is quickly passed off as bad for you and the reason you have high cholesterol or are overweight.

Fat is actually essential to the diet
We need it to function
We need it to lose weight
We need it for optimal health


Now we know the benefits of fat and how much you need
Here are the main types of fats you eat on a daily basis.

Although saturated fat gets slated as bad you can actually eat it and still be healthy.
It all comes down to balance.
You need polyunsaturated fats as they are essential to the body and need to come from the food we eat.

Eat a variety of different fats
Avoid Trans fats as no good can come from eating them
Increase your intake of Omega 3
Make sure you eat at least 15% of your calories from fat for optimal health.



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Types of Carb and a simple breakdown of what to eat


We follow a simple carb breakdown when it comes to eating for weight loss.

Carbohydrates are a large group and contain many kinds of food.

We start with –
Eat more – Fruits and Vegetables
Eat enough – Higher fibre foods (30g a day of fibre)
Eat enough – Starchy foods – root veg, grains, pulses, cereals
Eat less – Sugary and refined – junk food basically

We all know what sugary and refined foods are
We all know that we need to eat less of these carbs (crap)
We all know to eat more fruits and veg, and moderate amounts of grains if we want to lose weight and be healthier.

Keep it simple
Eat what you enjoy
Be happy

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What does 50g Carbs look like


Whether your low carb or high carb we all need to have an understanding of what carbs look like in our diet.

I am not saying you need 50g a day, if you stick to the
1-3g/kg/day intake your carbs could go from 50-200g a day.

How much you eat is down to your goal, body weight, protein intake, your preference for carbs or more fats and your environment.

I have seen many members lose weight eating low carb, low fat, high fat, a zone diet etc – it was down to being in a calorie deficit, eating enough protein and fat, being smart with their carb choices and being consistent with their nutrition and training.

You can still enjoy carbs and lose weight

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1. Sit down and work out a 3 day menu of meals you like – that fit within your calories for your weight loss goal. That’s 3 breakfasts, 3 lunches and 3 dinners – or if you enjoy the same breakfast every day just stick to that.

2. Work out in your week the best time for you to cook and prepare your food and stick to the commitment to use that time to prepare your meals.

3. Go shopping and buy according to your above menu/meal plan – get enough for what you will need for the week – if getting to the shop is hard you can always order it online.

4. Make it easy for yourself – Don’t choose to cook complicated meals that take forever, especially if you are time poor. Keep it simple

5. Find a way that works for you – one option in meal prep is to cook extra at dinner time and eat that for lunch the next day. If you don’t have time to cook everyday then do a big cook on Sundays and Wednesdays for example and prep a large batch of food that you can freeze or will stay fresh in the fridge. This is my preferred way to batch my meals as I work late every night and don’t always have the time to do it everyday.

Whatever method you use, find one that suits your lifestyle and preferences.
One you can stick with and is easy to manage long term.
It will lead to greater success, less stress and give you more time to enjoy life