Category Archives: Tips

10 HERBS & SPICES THAT REDUCE BODY FAT

As well as adding flavour to your food did you know that certain herbs and spices can help you maintain a healthy body weight?

They do this by firing up your metabolism, suppressing your appetite and shrinking fatty tissue.

Not only this they are full of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals and may help fight diseases. In many cases, herbs and spices contain more potent antioxidants compared to many well known mainstream food sources. Let me give you some examples.

Cloves (antioxidants 30% dry weight) and cinnamon (antioxidants 18% dry weight) versus blueberries (antioxidants 5% dry weight). Oregano has 42 times more antioxidants than apples, 12 times more than oranges, and 4 times more than blueberries.

From my experience and research, the top 10 herbs and spices that may support your weight loss goals when added generously to food are:

  • Ginger
  • Black Pepper
  • Cumin
  • Mustard
  • Ginseng
  • Cayenne Pepper
  • Turmeric
  • Cinnamon
  • Cardamom
  • Dandelion

Let’s take a closer look at them:

Ginger

If you’ve ever had ginger tea you’ll know it has a very warming and soothing effect. It’s known to help relax your intestinal tract and is very anti-inflammatory. It may have thermogenic properties that help speed up your metabolism, as well as an ability to suppress your appetite.

Black Pepper

Contains a substance called piperine which blocks the formation of new fat cells. It also increases the bioavailability of other foods.

Cumin

Helps with digestion and energy production, and may improve glycaemic control in people with diabetes. Also been found to improve memory and provide stress-relieving benefits.

Mustard

Interesting fact, the mustard plant is actually part of the cruciferous family of vegetables. Mustard seeds have been shown to boost metabolic rate by 25% so you burn more calories. In fact, 3/5 teaspoon of mustard seeds daily may help you burn an extra 45 kcals per hour.

Ginseng

Boosts energy levels, improves insulin sensitivity, speeds up metabolism and so helps with weight loss.

Cayenne Pepper

Capsaicin is the compound that gives peppers their heat. The heat effect increases the thermogenesis in your body, which in turn impacts on metabolism, weight loss and fat storage.

Turmeric

Turmeric is a yellow-orange spice. Curcumin is one of turmeric’s active ingredients, that reduces the formation of fat tissue by suppressing the blood vessels needed to form it, and therefore may contribute to lower body fat.

Cinnamon

This spice may help boost your metabolism so helping with weight loss. It’s been found to significantly reduce blood sugar levels, triglycerides, LDL (bad) cholesterol, and total cholesterol levels, as well as increase glucose metabolism, which would significantly improve your ability to regulate blood sugar. So it’s especially great for diabetics!

Cardamom

Cardamom, an aromatic spice with a spicy sweet flavour, is another thermogenic herb that helps boost your metabolism and may boost your body’s ability to burn fat.

Dandelion

The dandelion slows down your digestion, so making you feel fuller for longer. This in turn helps with weight management. Dandelions are also rich in antioxidants, dietary fibre, beta-carotene, vitamin K1, vitamins and minerals, and are beneficial for normalising blood sugar and cholesterol, as well as cleansing your liver.

On the next up-coming blog I’m going to give you some super simple ways to incorporate these herbs and spices into your diet. Can’t wait to share 😊

Love Gaynor x

7 WAYS TO BREAK THROUGH A FAT LOSS PLATEAU

Have you ever experienced a time when you’ve steadily been losing weight/inches and then it just comes to a stand still?! If this rings a bell then maybe it’s time to re-evaluate. These 7 tactics are a good starting point to help you break through the plateau.

Keep An “Honest” Food Diary

This is a proven technique for weight loss. When an “honest” food diary is kept it forces you to keep an accurate account of what food you eat including portion sizes and all the other little indulgences you have here and there that could very well be sabotaging your weight loss efforts.

Get More Sleep

There’s clear scientific links between sleep deprivation and weight gain. It messes up your hormones resulting in an increased appetite, cravings, poor workouts and a decrease in overall energy expenditure. So make sure you get your Zzzzz

Eat More Frequently

And no that was not a typo! Though counterintuitive, increasing the frequency of meals can kickstart weight loss. Skipping meals can lower your metabolism and cause your body to hold onto calories by storing them as fat. Whereas, eating small, but frequent healthy meals throughout the day keeps your metabolism firing. Your blood sugar levels will also be more stable and so you’re less likely to raid the pantry cupboards.

Change Your Workout Routine

If long bouts of steady state cardio and/or doing the same old routine aren’t producing the goods then it’s time for a change as your body isn’t responding. High-intensity interval training (HIIT), is a form of cardio that involves alternating sets of intense exertion with brief recovery and has been shown to burn more fat in a fraction of the time than traditional cardio. The whole idea is to shock and re-boot your system to get it losing weight again.

Increase Protein Intake

Consuming protein has been shown to lead to more fat loss. Healthy protein sources combined with resistance training significantly improves overall body composition.

De-Stress

Stress increases the body’s production of the hormone cortisol, which has been linked to both weight gain and increased appetite. Other side effects of too much stress include poor sleep and digestive problems, both of which will derail your body’s ability to burn fat.

Timeout

If you’re doing everything correctly, and have been doing it for a long time and you’re not losing any weight despite all your hard efforts there’s a possibility your body has shutdown. If you’ve over dieted/over trained your body will be tired, stressed and will fight back. Timeout could be exactly what’s needed to re-set your system.

WHAT’S YOUR EXCUSE?

Do you make excuses not to exercise and eat healthily?

If so, you must watch this NIKE NO EXCUSES VIDEO

We’ve all made excuses. Yours truly included.

No time. Don’t have the knowledge. No money. Bad genetics. Too tired.

Yadda yadda yadda.

The truth is that if you really wanted to you’d find a way.

As Tony Robbins says:

“It’s not about resources but about being resourceful”

Let me give you some examples:

If the kids are at their swimming lesson could you be doing some laps around the pool?

Could you save time by not surfing through socials and instead prep your food?

How about getting up 30 mins earlier to squeeze in a little exercise?

Can you take something out of your schedule to free time up for your health?

These are just a few ideas off the top of my head.

Always remember, you have a choice how you spend your time and what you prioritise.

Our brains are so clever we’ll search for any reason to self-sabotage, procrastinate, and justify the nonsense in our heads.

You need to take a truth pill and be brutally honest with yourself. It’s not about beating yourself up, it’s about being honest to make things happen. This empowers you. Whereas when you make excuses you’re giving your power away.

The bottom line is you can be fit and healthy no matter what your situation and background IF you want it badly enough.

And by the way, this approach doesn’t just apply to your health and well-being but anything in life.

So mon ami no wiggling out of this one!

What’s your go to excuse? And how are you going to knock it on the head?

Let me know and if you need help trying to hatch a plan so you can get fit and healthy get in touch as I can help. I’ll be with you every step of the way. Simply email GAYNOR@B-FIT.UK.COM or text/call me on 07748298728.

Love Gaynor x

THE NO GYM REQUIRED WORKOUT

I’m a firm believer that you don’t need to go to the gym or have fancy kit to get fit.

When it comes to exercise there’s more than one way to skin a cat.

Still not convinced?

Well, keep reading because I’m going to show you how.

For me, you’ve the best resource right on your doorstep – your body.

It’s free, with you 24/7 and very versatile.

There’s a gazillion ways you can use your body to trim down and get toned that doesn’t involve sweaty intimidating gyms. Not to mention the time you waste getting there/back, and the expensive membership fees.

In today’s world time is precious, and the stressors of work, family, and everyday life often make a workout the last priority.

Sound familiar?

The tips I’m about to share for working out with or without a gym can easily help you stay on track with your health and fitness goals and they’re so achievable!

Many of my B-Fit clients have done these and so can you my friend.

Give these exercises a go and be sure to let me know how you get on ok?

Bodyweight Training

The benefits of strength training are well known. If you don’t have access to free weights or machines, you can use the best machine of all – yourself.

Using your own body weight for strength and conditioning offers plenty of versatile exercise options, and can be done anywhere – home, hotel room, garage, beach, and at the park.

Here’s some of my personal favourites:

  • Lunges
  • Squats
  • Pushups
  • Planks
  • Burpees
  • Mountain Climbers

Very often bodyweight exercises are put into a circuit by doing a set of each exercise without stopping until you’ve completed one set of every exercise, which equals one circuit.

In fact, a few weeks ago I shared a great Fat Blasting Bodyweight Circuit Workout HERE. Make sure you check it out 😊

STORE CUPBOARD EXERCISES

I know it sounds a bit weird but you can turn household items into calorie-torching, body-sculpting tools.

Those large water bottles, cans of beans, and bags of rice in your store cupboard aren’t just for cooking. If you don’t have access to dumbbells or machines, these will do the job.

You can do bicep curls, shoulder presses, and tricep kick backs with them as well as many more fantastic exercises.

Other ideas include a gallon jug of water. You can even grab a couple bags of sand from a local DIY store. These are all great to squat, lunge and do step ups with.

Chairs and towels and other household items can help shake up your routine by supporting your body weight and adding movements that engage your core, and improve your balance.

Other Opportunities To Move

Take the stairs, park furthest away from the door, and take a walk around the block during your lunch hour are all very easy ways to squeeze in more exercise.

We all know that exercise is a key factor in weight loss so let’s make it happen.

If you need help getting motivated and/or don’t know where to start give me a call on 07748298728 for a FREE confidential chat.

I’m here to help.

Love Gaynor x

UNDEREATING & TOO MUCH CARDIO SLOWS DOWN FAT LOSS

Have you ever been guilty of under eating, and doing excessive cardio to lose weight? Be honest!

If I had a pound for every time I hear these scenarios I would be one rich Gaynor.

I can see the temptation BUT in the long term it will slow down your fat loss and have a negative impact on your overall body composition.

Here’s why…

Slower Metabolism 

Your metabolism is affected by the amount of calories you consume each day, it adapts to this and responds accordingly.

If you drastically drop your calories for too long you will lose weight, but you will be causing your metabolism to slow down too quickly.

You will eventually hit a plateau and struggle to progress. You see by this point there are fewer calories left in your diet to remove and let’s face it there’s only so much cardio you can do. In other words, you’ve maxed out your options too soon.

The best way to lose fat is slow and steady by gradually feeding and allowing your body to utilise fat stores whilst feeding it correctly to protect your metabolic rate. Believe me, you do not want to mess up your metabolism from doing things extreme. Not only is it unhealthy but it also messes up your hormones which can be very tricky to correct.

Less Lean Muscle  

Another common knock on effect of under eating is a loss of lean muscle. Muscle will be catabolised very quickly if you’re not consuming enough calories and amino acids from quality food sources.

A loss of muscle stalls your metabolism and affects the look of your physique. Nice lean muscle gives tone, definition and curves ladies so do not be afraid of it.

Also, muscle is metabolically active tissue, therefore, the less you have the fewer calories you burn. The more you have the more calories you burn.

Poor Performance 

The less muscle you have the poorer your performance will be when exercising. You’ll be weaker as you’re trying to run your body on a low tank of fuel.

The knock-on effect of poor performance is you’ll struggle to stimulate the muscle properly to burn off calories and every workout will become harder. It’s a vicious circle.

All of these negatives can be avoided and managed, just by eating sensibly, ensuring you’re not under eating and allowing gradual positive changes to take place.

Like with many things patience is key. You will get there I promise.

Love Gaynor x

STUCK IN A RUT AND NEED A MOTIVATIONAL KICK IN THE BUTT?

I can’t believe it’s mid-June already. Nearly half way through 2017.

The new year seems a long distant memory huh?

I’m not sure where you’re at with your goals, but what I do know is we’ve all started things, and then fallen off the wagon right? And that’s ok. We’re human.

But there is no better time than NOW to begin, re-boot and follow through with CONSISTENT ACTION.

Trust me, your future self will thank you.

So if you’re looking to get re-focused and knock those goals out of the park, but don’t know where to start you’re in the right place.

The following 4 tips will get you raring to go:

DISCOVER YOUR WHY

Out of all the things I’m sharing this is the most important.

Your why is what will drive your success. To find your why, dig deep and identify what drives/excites you to achieve your goals.

A well-developed why will clearly and powerfully help you break through unexpected obstacles and guide you as you prioritise your time, and focus.

To help you discover your why, answer the following questions …

Why do you want to live a healthier lifestyle? e.g. would you like to have more energy and lose a few pounds so you can be more active with your kids? Have you had a health scare and the time is now to really get it together for you and your family? Or maybe you want to look/feel fabulous to get back on the dating scene?

If your why is strong enough. Compelling. Authentic. From your heart. You will be motivated to start and keep moving forwards towards your goals. As human beings, our neurology is wired to move away from pain and towards pleasure.

FIND YOUR TRIBE

This may seem bias but I genuinely mean this – myself and all the women who attend my SMALL GROUP PT classes are shamazing. We’re a group of beautiful souls who are all loving, non-judgemental and super supportive. Why not come along and see for yourself? CLICK HERE for details.

HIRE A COACH

When I want to learn something new, achieve goals and be held accountable I hire a coach. There are certain jobs within my business I’ve needed help with so I got in the expertise I needed. Sometimes you just need help and there’s no shame in that. None of us can be great at everything.

Remember to take me up on my FREE B-FIT SESSION. You can dip your toe in with zero risks or obligations.

MUSIC CAN RAISE YOUR GAME

When you get to the gym or go for a run and realise you’ve forgotten your iPod, how do you feel? Lost? Me too.

For me, it’s an essential, and I don’t feel I can train properly without some kind of music. We’re all aware that music can help with motivation, but did you know there’s a lot of scientific evidence to back this up?!

Get your playlist to the ready and give it a go.

So what do you do to give yourself a motivational kick in the butt? Let me know, I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Lastly …

Do you have a friend who needs a little motivation? If you do, make sure you share this blog, it could really help them.

Remember this is all about becoming a new and better version of your already-amazing-self.

Routing for you 😊

Love Gaynor x

WARM RED PEPPER, SPINACH & COURGETTE SALAD

You know I’m a huge advocate of alkaline eating. This salad hits that spot, plus it’s nutrient dense and the mediterranean flavours are yummy too.

Red peppers, spinach, and courgettes are highly alkalising and are also jam-packed with vitamin C, A, manganese, folate, and potassium.

If you want to make the dish a bit more filling you can add some sweet potatoes, brown basmati rice or baby new potatoes.

Also another little pro tip for you …

If you’ve over indulged and/or had some naughty foods have a serving of LIQUID CHLOROPHYLL 15 mins before you eat. This will help flush out unwanted toxins that hold onto fat.

Ingredients

  • 1 red pepper
  • 450 g courgettes
  • 300 g fresh baby spinach
  • 350 g carrots
  • 150 ml extra virgin olive oil
  • Himalayan salt
  • Freshly ground pepper

Instructions

  • De-seed and slice the pepper
  • Cut the courgettes into thick batons
  • Wash/dry the spinach, place in a shallow serving dish
  • Peel the carrots and cut into slices
  • Place the olive oil into an oven proof dish over low heat
  • Add the carrots, peppers and season with salt and pepper
  • Cover the casserole dish
  • Cook for 30 mins until vegetables are tender
  • Add the courgettes, cook for another 10 mins
  • To serve add the veggies + juices over the spinach leaves

Tuck in and enjoy!

THE HEALTHY SALT SERIES – DEAD SEA – PART 2

Guys I hoped you enjoyed part 1 of my healthy salt series on Himalayan Salt. If you missed it, you can catch up HERE.

Today, as promised, I’m covering Dead Sea Salt, which as the name suggests is from the Dead Sea.

The Dead Sea borders Israel, the West Bank, and Jordan. It’s a salt lake 400 meters below sea level, which is the lowest point on dry land.

It’s renowned for it’s therapeutic and medicinal qualities due to it’s mineral rich, salty waters and mud. Also, because it’s hypersaline you can float in it.

What Is Dead Sea Salt?

Salts from the Dead Sea go back thousands of years to the Roman Empire and biblical times. It was so well regarded for its healing qualities that people went on pilgrimages to it to boost their wellbeing.

Dead Sea Salt is typically made by picking the salt from the sea, and then washing and drying it off to evaporate the water off. Granules are sieved and then separated according to size.

So what’s all the hype? Is it that much better than standard sea salt?

Yes and here’s why …

Dead Sea water is 29% salt compared to 4% salt in other seas. The dense salt levels are what causes it to be hypersaline so allowing you to float.

Also, only 12% of Dead Sea Salt is sodium chloride versus 85% in normal sea water making it much better for your health.

Dead Sea Salt is also incredibly high in magnesium and other minerals (potassium, calcium chloride, and bromides). This makes it a great choice to add to food as it’s low in sodium and yet you can increase your magnesium intake at the same time.

Benefits

  • Moisturises and smoothes the skin
  • Reduces skin inflammation, dryness, and itchiness
  • Relieves skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, and sunburn
  • Ease arthritis, rheumatism, muscular aches, and pains
  • Anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and antimicrobial properties

What To Look For

  • 100% unrefined
  • 100% natural

Uses

  • Cooking, baking, and seasoning (if using coarse Dead Sea Salt use a grinder)
  • In the bath to ease muscle aches, and treat skins conditions (use fine Dead Sea Salt)
  • In beauty products such as body scrubs and bath salts

Bath Guidelines

  • Dissolve 250 grams salt in a hot bath approx 36-40 degrees
  • Soak and relax for 20 mins

Storage

  • Store in a sealed container in a cool, dry place as over time the salt can absorb moisture

As you can see, there’s many benefits to Dead Sea Salt. Have I convinced you yet? Give it a try and let me know what you think? It’s such an easy switch and like Himalayan Salt doesn’t cost the earth.

In the next episode on the healthy salt series, I’m going to be introducing you to the final salt in our series – Epsom Salt.

Love Gaynor x

THE HEALTHY SALT SERIES – HIMALAYAN – PART 1

Just like fats, not all salts are created equal. There are good salts, and there are bad salts. Salts that can heal us, and salts that can literally kill us. This 3 part healthy salt guide is designed to shed a little light on this subject. My goal is to encourage you to ditch the processed table salt and opt for the healthier alternatives.

Salt over the years has gotten such bad press as the bad guy, and that we need to reduce our intake or we’ll be 4 foot under.

But it’s also vital we remember that it’s crucial to the chemical and electrolyte balance in our body. Without this, we would struggle to transmit electrical nerve impulses. These pulses allow us to perform ‘bioelectrical’ functions such as movement, thinking, heart beat, feeling, and seeing.

Mess this up and things can go a bit pear shaped 🙁

There’s a huge misconception that salt is just salt. But that’s not the case at all. There are many different kinds of salt.

I’m more concerned about the type of salt you consume than the quantity. For clarity, it’s specifically processed table salt (97% sodium chloride) that’s not good for us.

There are better salts available than table that deliver not just sodium but other rich and diverse minerals. That’s what I want to explore in this series and specifically Himalayan, Dead Sea, and Epsom salts.

First up, is Himalayan Salt … no surprise it’s from the Himalaya’s!

What Is Himalayan Salt?

These dusky pink granules don’t just look pretty – they’re also incredibly medicinal.

As well as containing sodium chloride (85%), Himalayan salt is jam packed with 84 trace minerals such as calcium, potassium, magnesium, sulphate and iron. It’s the iron that gives the beautiful pinkness.

Since Himalayan salt contains less sodium chloride than table salt, it’s a great way to reduce our overall consumption and minimise any potential health risks.

Benefits

  • Helps prevent cramping
  • Helps lower blood pressure
  • Hydrates skin and organs
  • Strengthens bones
  • Improves vascular health
  • Supports a healthier respiratory system
  • Promotes good pH balance and very alkaline
  • Promotes healthy sleep
  • Increases libido
  • Eliminates heavy metals from the body
  • Improves cardiovascular health

What To Look For

  • 100% unrefined
  • 100% natural

Uses

  • Cooking, baking, and seasoning (if using coarse Himalayan salt use a grinder)
  • In the bath to ease muscle aches, and treat skins conditions (use fine Himalayan salt)
  • Salt lamps to purify the air
  • Salt candles holders to purify the air and they give off the most beautiful warm glow
  • In beauty products such as body scrubs, soaps, and face masks

Bath Guidelines

  • Dissolve salt in a hot bath approx 36-40 degrees
  • For sore muscles and joints use 500 grams to 1 kg in a regular sized bath
  • For general wellbeing use 250 to 500 grams in a regular sized bath
  • Soak and relax for 20 mins

Storage

  • Store in a sealed container in a cool, dry place as over time the salt can absorb moisture

As you can see, there’s many benefits to Himalayan salt. Have I convinced you yet? Give it a try and let me know what you think? It’s such an easy switch and doesn’t cost the earth.

In the next episode on the healthy salt series, I’m going to be introducing you to Dead Sea Salt.

Back soon with the next instalment.

Love Gaynor x

8 TIPS FOR FAT LOSS

Does this scenario sound familiar?

You commit to a healthy lifestyle. You get all organised, are super positive and raring to go. But before you know it, you’ve reverted to your old habits – the diet slips and the gym attendance falls behind.

The good news?

There is a better way. Swap this all or nothing mentality for my top 8 tips for fat loss. Trust me they work!

If you follow 5-7 of these tips you’ll be well on your way to hitting your target goal. Follow ’em all and your results will be off the scale!

Here goes …

1. Avoid Faddy Diets

Faddy diets are a pet peeve of mine.

They don’t work, aren’t sustainable, and mess up your health and hormones.

Fat loss shouldn’t just be about getting into smaller jeans or looking good in a bikini, it’s about looking and feeling healthier for life.

It may sound cliche, but there are no shortcuts to losing weight – a balanced diet and regular exercise will achieve far more than a week on the latest craze.

2. Smaller Portions

At mealtimes, try putting your food on a smaller plate. Studies show that we’ll finish off the plate in front of us whatever it’s size – and we’ll feel full afterwards.

3. Mix Up Exercise

If you find exercise a chore to stick to try mixing it up. The key is choosing a form of exercise you enjoy such as a run outdoors, swimming, bodyweight exercises, a dance class and so on. The choices are endless!

Whatever you choose, just make sure it cranks up your heart rate so you burn calories in real time and also up to 24 hours afterwards.

4. Go Lean

Choose leaner cuts of meat and replace creamy sauces with vegetable alternatives. It’ll still taste great whilst absorbing less fat.

5. Buddy Up

Why not get a friend to train and get healthy with you? You can both motivate and help each other. Also, my B-FIT SMALL GROUP PT COURSE is perfect for extra support from a lovely group of like-minded ladies.

6. Crank Up Your Music

I’m a big believer in the power of music to help you push harder whilst exercising. So load up your playlist with your fav upbeat tracks.

7. Take Baby Steps

Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither is achieving long lasting changes in your health and fitness. So be patient. Losing weight doesn’t mean cutting out life’s pleasures altogether and being extreme.

Simple swaps make a huge difference and add up over time. For example, instead of ice cream, have a coyo coconut yoghurt. You’ll barely notice the difference. And when food tastes good, it doesn’t even feel like you’re dieting.

8. Detox & Purge Your Pantry

Clear out your cupboards of all junk food and replace with healthier choices. Controlling your environment as best you can is key to achieving your goals.