Jay’s Top 4: Tips to Get you Motivated and Keep you Motivated

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When it comes to making improvements to our health and fitness levels we all now WHAT we need to do. We know that we need to move more and eat better. The WHAT isn’t the problem. The thing that most people struggle with is the HOW. How do we go about making these changes and keeping ourselves motivated and committed to the changes that we are making?

So, I thought I’d share with you guys a few tips that have helped me stay motivated and committed to my long-term goals.

  1. Train in a way that you enjoy: You are more likely to be consistent and remain committed to a style of training you actually enjoy. 
  1. Take it one step at a time: One of the main reasons people give up on their goals is because they try to do too much at once and become overwhelmed. Instead of trying to change everything at once,s pick one thing to focus on.
  1. Focus on building discipline: motivation is unreliable and dependant on your moods and feelings. By building discipline you give yourself the necessary tools to focus on what you need to do (in order to achieve your goals) especially when you don’t feel like doing it.
  1. Remember Why You Started:  Make sure that the reason why you are embarking on your journey is strong. Your reason why will help you to keep disciplined and motivated on the harder days. 

Hope you guys find these helpful.

Jay xx

The Mental Impact of Food

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When we think about the effect that food has on our body, we tend to focus on the physical effects and underestimate (if not completely ignore) the mental impact food has on us (e.g. our mood, sleep and energy levels).

Studies have shown that diets which are well-balanced and full of nutrient dense foods can lead to a reduction in mood swings, anxiety and depression. This is due to the nutrients in these foods helping the brain to produce serotonin (a.k.a. the happy chemical) which among other functions helps our bodies to “regulate sleep, appetite, mediate moods and inhibit pain.” 

Studies have also shown that consumption of foods that maintain blood sugar levels can help us to stabilise our mood. 

5 Mood Boosting Foods

  1. Oily Fish: Regularly eating oily fish (i.e. salmon, mackerel and sardines) help to reduce the risks of depression and anxiety.
  2. Oats: Help us to maintain a stable mood, through slowly releasing energy into our bloodstream.
  3. Dark leafy greens, nuts and seeds: These all contain magnesium which can help boost the production of serotonin (the happy chemical).
  4. Eggs: contain nutrients which help to improve our mood
  5. Chocolate: Regular consumption of chocolate (of the dark variety) helps to boost the production of serotonin and is linked to reduced stress and anxiety levels. 

Just some food for thought (or feels).

Jay xx

Ice-cream for Breakfast: Protein Pancake Recipe

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Hey guys, quite a few of you have been asking for my protein pancake recipe so here you go:

For the Pancakes:

  • 1 scoop white chocolate protein powder
  • 1 Tbsp coconut flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 squares dark chocolate
  • 2 eggs 
  • 1 scoop water (I just use my protein scoop) 

For the toppings:

  • Salted Caramel Halo Top Ice cream 
  • 1 tsp salted caramel sauce 

Method

  1. Place protein powder, coconut flour, baking powder, chocolate, eggs and water in a blender and blend together until you get a smooth mixture,
  2. Place mixture in a hot pan according to the size you want your pancakes. Tip* I use my protein scoop, that way my pancakes are the same size.
  3. Flip the pancake once bubbles begin to form and then cook until lightly golden.
  4. Stack on a plate or in a bowl and top with a few spoons of the ice-cream
  5. Heat up the salted caramel sauce in a microwave for 15 secs and dribble it over the pancakes.
  6. Enjoy

Jay’s Top Tips to Achieving #Self-love

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A few months back I wrote a blog post on the importance of self-love and ensuring that you create a good relationship with yourself.  Today I would like to build up on that message and share with you guys some tips on how to improve your relationship with yourself. 

  1. Practice Positive Self-talk: Take time out of every day to practice focussing on the things about you that you love. You can start by choosing three things (and this can be anything) that you love about yourself and you can either stand in front of a mirror and say them to yourself or write them down.
  1. Stop comparing yourself to others: This is a big one. One of my favourite quotes is that “we need to learn to admire the beauty of others, without calling our own into question.” By all means be inspired and motivated by others, but don’t allow their achievements to make you feel like you are not good enough. If following a particular page on social media is causing you to feel bad about yourself don’t follow it.
  1. Acceptance & change: There are certain things about ourselves that we need to learn to accept, by this I mean the things that you can’t change. For me this is my legs, I have always felt that they have been huge and have spent far too many years of my life trying to get them to appear smaller. The fact is that I can’t really change my legs much, so they’ve become something that I have learnt to love. However, self-love and wanting to improve yourself don’t have to be mutually exclusive. Making positive changes such as eating better, exercising more, doing more of the things that you love and surrounding yourself with people who lift you up all are things that you are able to do which can help you to improve the relationship you have with yourself. 

“Never forget there is only one of you and you are as breathtaking as they come.” -E. Russell

Hope you guys find these helpful. 

Jay xx

Carbs: The Dark Lord of Macronutrients

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Firstly, what are carbs? 

Carbs (a.k.a carbohydrates) are molecules which are made up of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen. Carbs are one of the three macronutrients that make up our diets. All carbs are made up of units called saccharides which form three basic carb types.

  1. Simple carbs also known as sugar
  2. Complex carbs also known as starch 
  3. Non-starch Polysaccharides (NSP) also know as fibre 

What do carbs do for us? 

Their primary role is to provide our bodies with energy, but carbs also play an important role in “the structure and function of cells, tissues and organs.” 

Why are Carbs seen as the source of all evil (a.k.a the Voldemort of the food world)?

Due to increasing waist lines of the general population in recent years, we have looked to find a way to explain it rather than accepting as a population we are over consuming food and doing less and less physical activity.  

It used to be fat that was demonised by the press and food industry. It is now Carbohydrates and sugars that are viewed as the problem. It is easy to blame sugar and carbohydrates as they are often found in the foods we overeat as well as fizzy drinks and fruit juices

So what is the point of all this info? 

CARBS WILL NOT MAKE YOU GAIN WEIGHT!

For many people the go to solution for losing weight is to cut carbs from their diet. Cutting carbs from your diet can lead to a large drop in weight, however, the weight lost will be made-up predominately of water and not body fat percentage. Often after a couple of weeks (if they even make it that long) people end up falling off the wagon and binge/over-eat. The end result is that they end up putting all the weight they lost back on. 

Why does this happen? 

Cutting carbs completely is not a sustainable way to diet as people will often experience low energy/mood as well as finding their food choices limiting and uninteresting. 

In fact, many studies have shown that calorie controlled diets which contain carbohydrate sources such as bread have a far higher adherence rate as well as being much more sustainable for the general population.

The take-away (no pun intended) from this blog post is that as long as you are eating in a calorie deficit, it does not matter if you are continuing to eat carbohydrates, fats or protein! 

Keep your protein high! Eat in a deficit! And you will lose weight!

Just some food for thought. 

Jay and Liam xx