Member of the Month - Marguerite

I discovered Reformer Pilates via my sister in 2014 and took a number of classes with Ten Pilates.  I enjoyed the discipline but was dissatisfied with the style of teaching.  When I started at Power Pilates I realised that being taught by people with dance training was very important to me and is one of the things I most value.  I've been at Beckenham for just over a year and feel committed to the process.  As others have said, I wish I had discovered it before, about 10 years earlier to be exact when my then-exercise programme waned.

The two main improvements for me have been developing abdominal strength so that I can support a neutral spine position in everyday activities such as lying on my back, for example, which was not comfortable before.  The other has been realising the importance of glute muscles and the difference they make to exercise, leg stride, rising on tip toes to reach and a range of ordinary movements.  

It is hard to define what I love about Power Pilates ... the feeling upon completion of a class!  So much contributes to this feeling, which stays with me into the next day.  I aspire to aesthetic form combined with supple strength.

Pilates on the Reformer is hard but worth the effort.  As a woman in her middle age maintaining muscle and strength is really important to me.  I know a significant number of people developing joint problems and I want to avoid being one.  Pilates on the Reformer makes me feel vital while wrinkles gather, skin sags and memory degrades!  May Reformer Pilates be my purple as I grow old ...

Member of the Month - Carol

I began classes with Power Pilates in late October 2016 and have been thoroughly hooked by them.  I feel much stronger, especially in the core and my upper body, which is what I wanted to concentrate on.  The teachers are all fantastic, I love the fact that you know they will correct you if you are not doing something quite right but also encourage you to push yourselves.  The atmosphere in the classes is also special, very friendly, but you can feel that everyone is concentrating on the movements and wanting to achieve the maximum.  My only regret is that I didn’t find these classes sooner.  I also love running and so find Power Pilates a great parallel exercise.  No other classes or gym sessions that I have done in the past make me feel like I have worked as hard as when I’ve finished a Power Pilates class.

THE BEACH BODY CHALLENGE IS HERE!

Whilst we’re all eagerly awaiting more of the glorious sunshine, the thought of baring more flesh, may be filling some of us with dread! And not surprisingly, we’ve been wrapped up all winter, able to hide a multitude of sins. Well, if you’re feeling a little unmotivated about donning your beach wear this summer, or if you have a special event to attend that you absolutely must look fabulous for, then our Beach Body Challenge could be the answer to all your body dilemmas.
With our intensive monthly programme you will:
-          Get fitter
-          Build strength
-          Lose inches
-          Lose weight
-          Tone up
-          Feel good about yourself
-          Gain more energy
-          And get the summer glow!

What’s the plan?

Five classes a week plus a healthy eating guide which will teach you about the right foods to eat and how to cook them. Our plan includes three healthy, tasty, satisfying meals a day, with a seven day recipe guide to give you inspiration for the whole month. No shakes, no ready meals and certainly no starvation involved!
Like any intensive weigh loss/fitness month, we can’t promise that it will be easy (although we hope that you’ll enjoy it!) but we can promise that you will see results and learn new healthy habits to keep for life.
 

YOU CAN CHOOSE TO START OUR BEACH BODY CHALLENGE AT ANY POINT FROM THE 15TH OF MAY UNTIL THE 15TH JULY. YOUR MONTH WILL START FROM THE DATE OF YOUR FIRST CLASS.


PRICING

The whole shebang

20 classes plus your Food Guide (Advice, guidance, the dos and don’ts, as well as 21 tasty recipes for you to follow and be inspired by) will cost you £260 (pick up your Food Plan in studio) 

Just the classes (purchased separately)

20 classes £240

For the food guide either pick it up in studio or simply drop us an email to let us know and we will pop it in the post at korin@powerpilatesuk.com

What if I already have classes on my account?

For those of you already on monthly passes or memberships, fear not, you can still join in!  Simply request top up classes at just £12 each and our Food Guide for the cost of £20.

All packages are available to buy via your account. However if you would like top up classes please email korin@powerpilatesuk.com


IMPORTANT NOTE:
WHILST JUST DOING THE CLASSES ALONE WILL ABSOLUTELY MAKE HUGE CHANGES TO YOUR BODY, FITNESS AND STRENGTH, WE CANNOT STRESS ENOUGH HOW IMPORTANT COMBINING THE HEALTHY EATING PROGRAMME IS TOO IF YOU ARE ACTUALLY LOOKING TO LOSE WEIGHT AND WANT TO SEE THE BEST RESULTS POSSIBLE.

 

Member of the Month - Bea

 

We are so pleased to announce Bea as our member of the month. Bea has worked super hard since joining us recently and has come so far already on her fitness journey. Well done Bea, the only way is up!

"It was my younger sister who encouraged me to try pilates. I noticed how much leaner she had become. I had my first session with Power Pilates in December and I have never looked back. It was tough at first but seeing results by January kept me going. This is the first time I look forward to exercising and it does not feel like a chore. I noticed changes not only in my physique but also how much calmer I feel after each class. It helps me de-stress after a busy day. You have 1 hour just to yourself with fantastic instructors who challenge you in different ways. I feel stronger and leaner, my posture has improved, my lower back pain is no more and I finally found my core! I attend 3-4 classes every week ensuring I exercise with different instructors. My least favourite move is plank to pike on a white spring. My favourite exercise is spine bridge and legs in straps work. Thank you to Korin, Steph, Sarah and Emma for your encouragement and for being so good at what you do." 

Member of the Month - Leo Martin

We are pleased to announce our member of the Month, the very dedicated Leo Martin who you will sometimes find in the studio twice a day! 

"I booked my first class at Power Pilates in May 2015. I had done some reformer Pilates previously but not for a couple of years and in hindsight I had no idea what I was doing! Taking it up again with Korin and her team has been brilliant, helping me work on my technique, understand the principles and get stronger – I can safely say I am hooked and I’m sure I’ve found muscles I didn’t know I had! 

All the moves are challenging, but if I had to pick a “favourite” it’s probably pike to plank, and I love a dynamic stretch. My nemesis has to be the spine curl/roll up which makes my hamstrings cramp annoyingly!

I try and get in a couple of classes a week and work with different trainers, all of whom are fantastic but with a variety of styles to keep it fresh and engaging.  Since joining I am definitely fitter, leaner and stronger – so Power Pilates ‘does what it says on the tin’! 

Thanks Korin, Sarah, Laura, Emma, Jaclyn, Steph, Yarit and Wojtek – you lot rock! X"

Member of the Month - Dom Boydell!

Proving that Pilates is NOT just for girls, our Member of the Month Dom Boydell! Dom, has been with us almost right from the start and his consistency has paid off with tremendous strength and ability. Well done Dom! Here's what he has to say about us. 

 

My Power Pilates journey started back in December 2014.  I had been doing mat based Pilates since I had a slipped disc, over 16 years ago and it was my chiropractor, Beth, that pointed me in the direction of Korin and the team.  I knew about the reformer and its birth as a converted hospital bed to help injured soldiers recuperate but it still looked like a device to be found in a dungeon …

Over the two years that I have been coming to Pilates I have never had a bad session, some of the exercises are difficult, some are easier - but all of them are challenging. I have worked with most of the trainers from the “queen of mean” – guaranteed to raise a sweat and provide a combined aerobic and toning session to the “mistress of the rack” whose focus on toning and body alignment makes me walk out feeling taller and straighter and walking on air.

Alongside the “normal” sessions I have smiled and sweated my way through Cardio Bounce, grunted through HIT and pliéd through Barre.  Even though I have often been the only man in the room I have never felt isolated and I enjoy the camaraderie of the sessions - except for the time when I was wearing my baggy blue top in a sea of black lycra - a terrible fashion faux pas.

Favourites moves: Peter Pan in cardio bounce and Saturday Night fever – guaranteed to make me smile

Least favourite: Dog Cocking Leg and the Spine Bridge (the thought of which gives me cramp)

Most likely to say: can we do stretching and relaxation please!

Member of the Month - Jane Baxter

We are thrilled to show Jane the recognition she deserves after her incredible transformation. Her dedication and commitment has been truly inspiring - hard work really does pay off!

'I joined Power Pilates in October 2015 & initially found it very tough and therefore didn't put 100% commitment into it. However, I persevered & gradually saw results as I was toning up & losing weight. This then encouraged me to attend regularly & I took advantage of the beach body & monthly courses; it was then that I started seeing amazing results! All the classes & instructors are fantastic and I have personally found that it's good to vary the classes between standard, cardio bounce and barre sculpt in order to develop different muscle groups & achieve definition. As a result of Power Pilates I've become stronger & have toned up but most importantly for me I've achieved my goal in losing weight & have lost just over 2 stone since joining! Thank you to the team at Power Pilates for helping me to achieve a better fitter me, I now wouldn't be without it'.
- Jane Baxter

How to Set Goals that you will Keep


1. Don’t set too many

We can easily get carried away with all our good intentions at the beginning of a new year and vow to change a whole heap of things about ourselves. However, when you give yourself too many new changes to take on, you are more likely to fail on most of them. Start with just two of three goals that you would like to achieve and work out a tangible way of reaching them.

2. Be specific

It’s easy to say I want to lose weight, I want to be rich, I want to travel more. But how exactly are you going to lose weight and in what time frame? What steps are you going to make towards making money? Where do you want to travel to and when do you want to go? Break your goals down and ask yourself questions about how they can be achieved. By being more specific you are more likely to succeed as you have a clearer idea of what it is you want yourself.

3. Be realistic

I want to lose two stone in a month is a rather unrealistic goal to set yourself and to achieve it you would pretty much have to starve yourself! So, you guessed it, you are unlikely to succeed. Asking yourself how long has it taken for you to gain the weight you want to lose, is a good starting point as it will probably take you the same amount of time to lose it. If your goals are too unrealistic then again, you will be back at the starting block pretty quickly!

4. Start by making small changes

Sometimes the size of our goal seems so mammoth and so far out of reach, that you give up at the sheer thought of how long you have to go. But if you start by setting small goal posts to reach and just look towards that first hurdle, then reaching that point will seem a lot more manageable.

5. Keep motivated

Losing motivating is a common factor as to why people give up on their goals. To keep yourself on track, look for motivation in others: surround yourself with like minded people who you aspire to and have similar aspirations, check out your idols on social media for daily motivating and most of all keep reminding yourself with positive affirmations of what you want to achieve and why you are doing what you are doing.
 

Things to Remember for a Pilates Class


1.  Water

Like any class, you should always take water to keep you hydrated. Keeping dehydration at bay, will allow your muscles and cells to stay nourished and your mind to stay alert and focused. It will also help to combat muscle fatigue and reduce the after-burn, all of which are essential when you’re working out and challenging your body.

2. Your core

Keeping a strong core throughout your class is one of the fundamental elements of Pilates. Once you have learnt how to connect your core muscles correctly, you can apply this to any other fitness, sport or daily activity you do, which can make a noticeable difference in your strength and performance. And most importantly, a strong core promotes a strong spine, which is vital for your overall strength, health and wellbeing.

3. A good kit

You may be tempted to go with cheaper gear, as Pilates wear can be pricy. However, in this case you get what you pay for. Good quality fitness wear will not only look more stylish and encourage to show off your new outfit in class, but the material will be more flattering and supportive as you move. It will also last for years and you are less likely to show off an embarrassing display of your G string through your see through leggings as you do your roll downs!

4. Grip socks

Although sock are part of a good kit, they deserve a separate mention, as they are pretty important in a reformer or equipment Pilates class. Standing on a smooth surface can be quite slippery in normal socks (you could do it in bare feet although some studios prefer that you wear socks and you may prefer it yourself) and the light grip under a good pair of Pilates socks will ensue you feel more secure and is one less thing to worry about as you try to master your moves.

5. Your focus

The great thing about Pilates is that it requires focus and concentration in order to perform the exercises properly and get the most out of your class. It’s pretty impossible to let your mind wander too much, as you will no doubt forget to breathe correctly or concentrate on drawing up your pelvic floor! Immersing yourself in your class this way, is a great stress relief, as for one whole hour you will have not allowed yourself to think about anything going on, on the outside – a time to focus on just YOU and you alone!
 

Member of the Month - Arti Newman

Arti has been a regular at Power Pilates UK for well over eighteen months. She trains around four to five times a week with us and her commitment is reflected in her incredible strength, ability and the fantastic shape that she's in! We would like to give Arti recognition for this and say a massive well done by making her our first Member of the Month! Here's what she has to say: 
‘I started Power Pilates UK after trying so many different forms of exercises, which I could never commit myself to. Weeks after starting, I noticed my body changing and felt so much stronger and well-toned!! Power Pilates UK works on all parts of the body, I feel the classes are well structured with amazing trainers!!! Exercises that I thought were impossible are not with a bit of commitment and consistency.... Challenging enough but not impossible!!!’ 
- Arti Newman

How to get a peachy bum

1. Squat

The Glute muscles are the biggest set of muscles in the body, meaning that when you work them you are not only helping to keep them toned, but you are also burning more calories which results in weight loss. Squats are one of the best exercise to do to gain a peachy bum! And the good news is that we LOVE squat variation at Power Pilates UK! Make sure you are squatting low enough to get the most out of the exercise, just be sure to focus on your technique and alignment – if you’re not sure, ask!

2. Lift heavier weights

You may be happy cruising along with your 1kg dumbbells, but are you challenging yourself??! If you’re after a peachier bottom, then try holding heavier weights when performing leg exercises (as long as it doesn’t compromise your technique). By stepping up your weights you will challenge your leg and butt muscles more and improve your overall fitness.

3. Body brush

Dry body brushing encourages lymphatic drainage, which promotes a good clean lymphatic system. Why is this important? Well, if the lymphatic system is blocked then you are likely to suffer from unsightly cellulite, which is common for most women unfortunately! Invest in a natural bristle brush and start at the feet brushing upwards towards the heart. Pay particular attention to areas that have cellulite and also where the lymph nodes are: behind the knees, under the arm pits and in-between the breasts.

4. Eat clean – cut out processed foods

Again, if you want a smooth, beautiful cellulite free bottom then you gotta start with the basics, and that’s what you’re putting in your mouth. As well as sugar, try to cut out processed foods which are full of preservatives and additives, which in other words means toxins. Toxins are one of the main causes of cellulite. Instead focus on eating foods as close to their natural state as possible and try and cook your food from scratch so that you know what you’re eating with no hidden ingredients.

5. Drink water

And what do we need to flush out those toxins? Water of course! Water helps purifies the system and replenish muscles, so drink lots of it and it will all go towards that peachy tush!

How to lose Belly Fat

1. Perform compound exercises

When we think about losing weight from our tummy, the type of exercises you would think would think be suitable, are crunches, 100’s and so forth which target the abs. And yes, although these isolation exercises are great for strengthening the core and toning the abdominals, they are not the best exercising you can do for actual weight loss around the midriff. Instead look at doing more compound movements that include using several different muscle groups all in one go. In our classes, we often perform compound movements which challenge the whole body collectively.

2. Cut out sugar

Sugar is one of the main culprits for excessive belly fat. The best thing you can do for your body and to fit into your Christmas party outfit, is to cut it out! You may be surprised at how much sugar you consume on a daily basis. So, start by taking a look at the basic things; do you drink it in your tea/coffee? Have fizzy drinks? Sprinkle it on cereal? Drink a lot of Alcohol? Eat so called ‘healthy’ snack bars? Don’t forget smoothies and fruit contain a lot of sugar, even if it’s natural, it’s still going to lead to those extra pounds around the waist.

3. Cut bad carbohydrates

If you can, I would say cut all carbohydrates to get rid of stubborn belly fat. If you can’t, then at least cut out the bad stuff. By that I mean white bread, pasta, rice and potatoes which have little nutritional value and replace with healthy carbohydrates such as brown rice, quinoa, millet and sweet potatoes which are enriched with goodness. But do be aware of your portion sizes and go easy, as even though these are good for you, they are will still store as fat if eaten in large quantities.

4. Eat natural yoghurt

High calcium found in natural yogurt is said to reduce fat around the waist line. Apparently calcium stored in fat cells plays a crucial role in how fat is processed and stored by the body and studies have show that those with a high calcium intake stored less fat, particularly around the tummy. Of course you cannot rely on this alone, you must also be eating a healthy diet.

5. Take a probiotic

If you have a poor digestive system you are likely to suffer with an overload of toxins, causing the system to be sluggish. A sluggish system means the body is not functioning as effectively as it should be and is likely to hold on to fat. To promote a good digestive system, take a probiotic or find natural probiotics in fermented foods like sauerkraut.

How to get more out of your workouts

1. Invest in higher tech gear

Before heading to class, make a simple swap: Ditch the cotton duds and slip into a poly blend that absorbs moisture and helps regulate your body temperature. Research shows that people who wear a more functional polyester fabric when exercising improved their athletic performance, compared to when they worked out in cotton clothes.


2. Improve your form over Speed

Speed and reps don’t necessarily equal a better outcome. The key to building muscles and avoiding injury is making sure every body part is in the right place. Instructors often explain when foot or arm placement is off and give modifications, but it’s important to ask questions if you’re unsure. If speaking up during class isn’t your style, stay afterwards so the teacher can show you precise alignment for your next visit.
 

3. Lift a heavier load

If you still believe heavier weights create a bulky body, it’s time to wake up and grab a heavier set up dumbbells! This is simply not true, to get toned, there are only two things you can do: lose fat or build muscle, and while you can’t target fat loss in specific areas of the body, you can build muscle in specific spots.
Having more muscle means increased strength and you can burn more calories. If an exercise still feels easy by the last few reps, it’s time to pick up a heavier set of dumbbells. 


4. Squeeze out the final reps

You know those last few moves you do to complete a sequence? The ones that leave you shaking or feeling like your arms are jelly? Those are the reps that change your body. Instead of giving up, talk yourself through it. Reminding yourself that you are grateful that you have a body that can push you through this and, unless you have an injury or feel that something is wrong, you’re benefiting from it. This is why you came. This is what you wanted. Keep repeating that when your muscles scream for rest.


5. Have a blast!

Dreading exercise means it’ll probably fall off your to-do list and lead to zero results. Find something you enjoy so you continue to go back. Picture your workout as fun or a deserved break, rather than thinking of it as hard work. Carry your commitment to fitness beyond those four studio walls and you’ll see big pay-offs in other areas of your life as well.

Why Women Need More Protein

When we think about protein rich diets, we may conjure up an image of an oiled up bulky body builder with a plate loaded full of steak and eggs, which I imagine probably isn’t that inspiring for most women! But have you ever considered why body builders eat protein rich diets, and more so, why you should possibly be taking a leaf out of their book?

Ok, maybe not so much with the overload of red meat, as I believe there are much healthier ways of topping up your protein intake, but certainly why we should be including more protein in our diets and how?

Generally speaking, as women we don’t eat enough protein. We tend to crave more sugary snacks, pasta and other refined carbs. Men, on the other hand, tend to want to sink their jaws into a big juicy burger! We may also be prone to believing the myth that eating too much protein will make you ‘bulky’ just like those body builders! But in fact, that couldn’t be further from the truth.

A body builder’s physique is built with a strict diet and hours in the gym working to a bespoke fitness plan that aims to create muscle and lots of it. Adding a little more protein to your diet will not give you a shortcut to the same look! If it did, there would be far more Arnold Schwarzenegger types wandering around. So if you’re not putting hours and hours a week into a weightlifting gym routine, you’re probably not going to gain bulk from extra protein.

Did you know that protein is the most important nutrient to include in your diet if you want to lose weight and build lean muscle mass?

Here’s how:

  • Protein helps satiate hunger, filling you up for longer fills you up so that you don’t feel the need to snack so much
  • It boosts your metabolism so that you burn more calories
  • It helps reduce cravings
  • It prevents muscle loss which in turn keeps your metabolic rate higher and keeps you burning more calories
  • It helps muscle repair, so every time you do your workout, protein will actually help your body create that lean muscle you crave!

Several very good reasons why you should be trying to cram more of it into your diet!

So how do you make sure you’re getting enough? . Protein should be included at every meal and this is where a lot of women (vegans especially) can go wrong.

Here’s some quick tips to ensure you’re adding a little extra protein to your daily diet:    

Breakfast

Porridge with honey – add some nuts and seeds or a scoop of protein powder.

Lunch

Brown rice salad – add some cottage cheese and hemp seed sprinkle

Snack

Fruit Smoothie – add a scoop of vanilla protein or a spoonful of your favourite nut butter

Dinner

Tuna Steak with Chinese green veg – top with a boiled egg

 

These meals are quick, easy and can be easily thrown together even if you get home from work late. If you’re a vegan and think you’re not getting enough protein in your meals, think about a protein supplement that’s high in Lysine as this is the essential amino acid you may not be getting in enough quantities.  

 

Turmeric and Mango Smoothie Bowl

Packed with superfood ingredients this protein smoothie is a perfect breakfast of post workout pick me up.

Ingredients

  • Half a Mango peeled and cubed
  • Almond milk to cover
  • 1 tsp Coconut oil
  • 1 tsp Chia seeds
  • ½ tsp Turmeric
  • ½ tsp ginger
  • 2 thin slices of red Chili
  • 1 scoop Neat Nutrition vanilla protein powder
  • Few cubes of ice

To make: blitz all the ingredients in a smoothie maker and top with whatever fruits, nuts and seeds you like.

 

Protein Balls

If you need a quick pick me up or after workout snack, then these protein balls are my absolute ‘go to’! Make them up in a batch and keep them in the fridge for a week.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups madjool dates
  • ¾ cup ground almonds
  • 2 tsp maca powder
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 2 tbsp peanut butter
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp Manuka honey
  • 1 heaped teaspoon ginger
  • 1 scoop Neat Nutrition Protein Powder
  • 1 tbsp Tahini

To make: blitz the dates first in the food processor and then add the other ingredients until the mixture forms a dough. With wet hands shape small-medium sized balls and roll in chia sees if you like. Store in an air tight container in the fridge.

 

Spiced Peach Protein Muffins

Fancy a sweet treat or an easy Breakfast on the go? These gorgeous Spiced Peach Protein Muffins are full of good ingredients to make your indulgences saintlier.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup of ground almonds
  • ¾ cup cottage cheese
  • ½ cup Neat Nutrition Vanilla protein powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 1 egg
  • ¼ cup almond milk (or any milk)
  • 1 large peach, pitted and chopped
  • Handful of raspberries
  • 2-3 madjool dates (or natural sweetener of your choice)

To make- blitz the dates in the food processor first and then simply stir in the other ingredients and bake in a medium oven in muffin cases for about 30-40 minutes.

 

The Christmas Countdown is on!

Summer may be over, but don’t despair, with a brand new season comes plenty of exciting things to look forward to, like the festive season for one! If you see Christmas time as a chance to cover up in your winter woollies and indulge in mince pies, then perhaps it’s time to change your attitude and set a few new goals? Imagine greeting friends and relatives that you haven’t seen all year looking and feeling your very best. Imagine entering the New Year with a spring in your step and not needing to go on a diet!

The good news is that with around twelve weeks to go until Christmas, there’s plenty of time to make a difference. So, how to do it?

I’m not a fan of extreme diets as I believe they often lead to failure. So instead, start by making a few small changes in your diet and lifestyle, which in turn will result in big changes by the end of the year.

  1. Up your protein intake and lower your carbohydrates. Protein keeps you fuller for longer and helps you avoid overeating. Stick to smaller portions complex carbohydrates such as brown rice, sweet potatoes and quinoa and only eat them during the day, not in your evening meal.
  2. Drink only water. If you drink lots of sugary drinks including fruit juice, this is a really easy way to immediately cut out a load of calories from your daily diet. Stick to water, herbal teas and limit your tea and coffee to just a couple a day. Oh and make sure you go for Americano rather than a higher calorie latte or cappuccino.
  3. Workout more. If you think that exercise is only 4% of your day, then there really is no excuse not to fit it in more often! One of the most common questions we get asked, is how many times a week do I need to come to class for it to make a difference? And the answer is very simple: the more you come, the more dramatic and the quicker you will see the results. I would say that 3-4 times a week is ideal with additional outside activities such as walking, running, or whatever floats your boat to keep you active. If this sounds like a lot to you, then you are simply not used to it. When you start exercising more, getting stronger and seeing results it becomes addictive and you will want to work out every day…believe me, it’s true!
  4. Cut out sugar. Sugar is the one most damaging substances that we can put into our body. End of. Not only does it make us fat, but it also is one of the main contributors towards many diseases such as diabetes and even cancer. It also causes premature ageing making us look older!
  5. Put a limit on Alcohol. Drinking will not only lead to weight gain and a bloated belly, but also leaves us feeling lethargic, sluggish and even depressed. I know for many it’s one of the most impossible substances to cut out completely, so simply put a limit on it. Don’t drink throughout the week or at home, keep drinking for special occasions only and stick to lower calorie drinks such as vodka, soda and fresh lime.

How to Combat ‘Sleepless Night Face’

Life as a new mummy is wonderful. Sleepless nights however are the downside. Exhausted eyes and tired skin that come with those sleepless nights are what face me first thing in the morning in the mirror and confirm that a) I am indeed exhausted. And b) I’m getting a bit older every year. God damn it!

Throughout my pregnancy one of the things I missed the most (apart from Prosecco) was my most favoured anti-ageing specialist, Doctor Mark Holmes. Dr Holmes is a top specialist within his field and his less is more approach is a huge selling point for me. The frozen face look is quick becoming a thing of the past, as more and more women are realising that a subtle helping hand is not only more natural but also more attractive.

Personally, Dr Holmes has treated me for both Botox and fillers, both of which are done subtle enough not to notice that I’ve ‘had work done’ but noticeable enough to make a difference to the way I look and feel. Some people like to hide the fact that they have these procedures done, but I’m quite happy to be honest and say that I have a little treatment here and there to enhance my face and combat the signs of ageing. Yes, I may have a bags around my eyes, but having smooth skin, minus a few wrinkles (the effects of botox) is a small, but very much appreciated thing to wake up to after another sleepless night.

His new treatment Silhouette Soft is something I am keen to try in a few years’ time; a non-invasive procedure which gently lifts ‘sagging areas’ with the use of dissolvable threads inserted under the skin. Dubbed the facelift without surgery, the threads are gently pulled up to lift jowls and around the eyes, again promoting a subtle change that make the face look more youthful. The effects last up to around 18 months after which the threads dissolve.

Dr Mark Holmes is based in East Grinstead and Buckhurst Hill. For further information, head over to his website http://www.drmarkrholmes.com/

Fat Burners in Your Fridge

Eating healthily isn’t always about saying ‘No’ to all your favourite foods, but saying a big fat YES to all the delicious foods that you can eat, in the knowledge that they are doing you good and burning fat at the same time! 

Take a look at what the experts have to say on some of the best ‘fat fighters’ that most of us have in our cupboards and fridge every day. 

Chilli

We all recognise that chilli helps us heat up, even making us break a sweat after consuming it. ‘This is called diet-induced thermogenesis. It is this process that is excellent for those who want to lose weight as it encourages our body to burn up calories rather than storing them. It is the active constituent capsaicin that creates the heat in our body from the food ingested. Studies have also shown that chilli may help to decrease your appetite too. More good news for those wanting to reduce their snacking between meals!’ explains Elouise Bauskis, Nutritionist at www.nutricentre.com.

Brown rice

This is a much better choice than white rice for many reasons. ‘Firstly, it is much more nutritious, as it hasn’t been as refined as white rice, and therefore maintains more of its fibre, protein and nutrients. On the glycaemic index of foods brown rice is a medium GL food, whereas white rice is a high GL. If you want to lose weight and for proper blood sugar balance generally, which will help you on many levels, you should ideally consume only low and medium GL foods daily.’ says Dr Marilyn Glenville, the UK’s leading Nutritionist (www.marilynglenville.com), author of The Natural Health Bible for Women.

Quinoa

‘This is a fabulous substitute for rice or pasta. Quinoa is actually a seed, so lower in carbohydrates, higher in protein and it’s very nutritious with generous amounts of minerals. It’s also alkalising and it will be much more beneficial for balancing blood sugar levels as part of a meal. Balanced blood sugar levels will decrease fat storage.’ says Elouise.

Almonds

‘Almonds are high in essential nutrients especially the minerals and vitamins. They are also full of nourishing healthy fats as well as being high in protein. Fat and protein make you feel fuller for longer, which should encourage you to snack less. They also help to balance your blood sugar levels and improve insulin sensitivity, which is an essential part of healthy weight loss and management.’ explains Glenville.

Cinnamon

‘It can help weight management by helping to stabilise and normalise blood sugar levels, which can keep you fuller for longer, while reducing cravings for sweetness. It is also a digestive herb, gently warming your stomach, aiding in the breakdown of your food more efficiently.’ adds Elouise.

Green Tea

‘Green tea contains a wealth of antioxidants, the most powerful of them being EGCG, a substance that can boost metabolism. To put it most simply the nutrients found in green tea increase the levels of hormones that tell the fat cells to break down fat. This results in fat being released into the bloodstream making it available as energy.’ says Bauskis.

Coffee

 ‘Caffeine boosts your metabolism by up to 3-11%, which may aid in weight loss. It has also been shown to increase fat burning, by up to 10% in individuals who are obese, and 29% in those who are lean. This effect may decrease over time though as your body becomes used to the caffeine. The chlorogenic acid in coffee helps reduce glucose absorption. Coffee can also dramatically boost your physical performance, on average by 11-12%. By releasing fatty acids from the fat tissues for the body to use as ‘fuel’, and by increasing adrenaline levels in the blood, it makes our bodies ready for physical exertion. Coffee will increase your energy prior to a workout, whilst also strengthening endurance, which will enhance athletic performance.’ Elouise explains.

Eggs

They are one of the healthiest foods on the planet! ‘The yolk is super nutritious. It contains lecithin, nutrients and antioxidants, especially lutein and zeaxanthin. Eggs are full of good quality protein that is easy to assimilate. Plus they help you feel fuller for longer, which will encourage you to eat less. They have a positive effect on cholesterol levels, increasing our “good” HDL cholesterol whilst decreasing the “bad” LDL cholesterol.’ explains Glenville.