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My simple and effective tip for easing lower back pain in 20 mins.

Category: Exercise tips and advice | Published : October 24, 2016

My simple and effective tip for easing lower back pain in 20 mins.

Simple guide for easing lower back pain or a tense lower back.
A lot of people suffer from back pain and when it is really bad it can be impossible to find a comfortable position which allows it to relax.

The best method I have come across (and I’ve tried loads) is to get an ice pack wrap it in a damp tea towel (this will transmit the cold). Then lay on your back on a hard floor, your knees should be bent so your feet are also flat on the floor. Now place the Ice pack, under your back and make sure its in contact so use a cushion to raise it if necessary.
In this position your back will be able to relax as it is the closest you can get to a position where your back is not load bearing and so can switch off.
Finally your back can relax and the ice can help to remove the tension and relax the overly active muscles.
Spend 20 minutes in this position so put on the TV or music to listen to. You should find after 20 minutes your back is less tense & relaxed.

IMPORTANT – Always pull in your abdomen when getting up, its braces your core and supports your lower back. Try and make this a habit when ever you sit up or stand.  

ALSO NOTE – This is for the end of the day, when you want your back to relax. Not before anything vigorous. Ice is not good before activity, heat is best for this. I recommend a warm shower or heat pack at the start of the day and this to finish. 

What works for you?

If you’ve got a great method or you have some questions please chat to us & let us know by commenting on this on our Facebook page: 

Contact details

Website: https://www.facebook.com/cambridgefitnessnews

Amy Lost 2 stone in 2 months

Category: Client success stories | Published : October 24, 2016

Amy Lost 2 stone in 2 months

At Cambridge fitness we are results focused and love sharing our client success stories to celebrate how well our clients have done and also encourage others to do the same.
Why did you start training with Kay?

I knew that I had to make a change, I had become uncomfortable with the way I looked. I knew that Kay was the best Personal Trainer to push me and get great results
How many times a week do you train?

I train 5 time a week. Early each morning is when I am most motivated and also there is nothing worse that finding energy after a long day at work
What is your favourite exercise to do?

Kay introduced me to “manmaker thrusters” – Look them up.

What is your best achievement so far working with Kay?
Becoming more knowledgable with weightlifting, I now cant go with out it!

What is your total weightless?

I have lost just over 2 Stone to date, which has taken 2 months. Kay proved that with the right mix of great nutrition and exercise you can lose the weight you want, healthily.

If after reading this your keen to learn more about Kay or any of our PT’s just click on personal trainers on the left of the page. Or contact us for a free consultation.

Also Ive added a video of man maker thrusters below.

Contact details

Email: pt@cambridgefitness.co.uk

Website: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iMNnvhg1JcM

The Power of a positive morning routine

Category: Exercise tips and advice | Published : October 24, 2016

The Power of a positive morning routine

Almost all highly successful people have a powerful & positive morning routine, that allows them to reset each morning & sets them up for the day.
With out a positive morning routine you will start each day in a haze in a rush with no clear direction. You may start with saying a series of highly negative things to your self like, “whats the point in getting out of bed?” “What did I do wrong yesterday?” “Why am I not happy? “ You will instinctively answer these questions so its like having a good friend tell you your useless each morning! How can you expect to get the most out of your day like this? Or even expect to enjoy your day?

I have had a really good morning routine for around 7 months now, because I reset each morning I don’t carry the stress from the day before so I am able to push harder at self improvement in other areas of my life. My mind is also the clearest it has ever been which allows me to focus more on my actual life, family and goals rather than be caught up in the haze of modern life.

My morning routine
Wake up to a great song- Think positively about the day (I am lucky this comes easy but if it doesn’t for you then you must make it a habit, ask yourself the same positive question “what am I looking forward to doing today?” It may be tough at first but it will get better)
Cold shower – I finish each shower with some ice cold bursts. This releases a lot of endorphins & also its a great boost for your immune system
Stretch – I get a tight lower back so I stretch this every morning & its now fine. I also do a 10 second Plank
Meditate – This is the big changer for me I struggled for a long time to get meditation into a routine and now use the headspace app it also takes just 15 minutes.
Coffee – After I meditate I set up my coffee pot and read a good book while it brews.

A morning routine creates a habit of self improvement
Our busy lives mean each day we develop mental and physical tension so its very important to reset each day I find doing meditation and flexibility solves both these, but some people will find yoga an excellent answer for them both.
Every person will have the perfect morning routine for themselves which will develop with time. So don’t focus on copying others but please do start building yours.

Mindfullness tips

Category: Exercise tips and advice | Published : October 24, 2016

Mindfullness tips

I have been practising mindfulness meditation for 7 months now. I now have a fantastic morning routine and rarely miss a day. It has had a massive positive effect on my life by making me able to start each day with clear, fresh and energised mind.

This clarity in my thinking has enabled me to spot improvements in other habits in my life which have been getting in the way of life.

I have studied minimalism – not in a massive way but it allowed me to get rid of over half my stuff and now I only buy things I need and will use.

I am on the road to becoming more organised in all areas of my work and personal life. Spotting where I am repeatedly going in circles and putting a system in place for this allows me to relax on these issues now as they have system which works and so no longer need to sit in the back of my mind nagging me.

Learning has become a passion of mine again, I now read much more and have realised if I want to learn I must learn better methods for learning like mind mapping and also creating powerful memory habits.

This has also led me to create this new blog series on how to live and move. These subjects have always fascinated me and Its always been my goal to master simple techniques we can implement in our lives to get the most out of ourselves. I will break it down into a series of how to posts like my last post how to stand.

So back to mindfulness as I believe clarity and peace in our mind is a rare commodity in todays society. But it is the cornerstone on which we can build a fulfilled life on. So I highly recommend headspace as a tool that works for me:

Contact details

Website:www.headspace.com

Learning to stand – Fundamental 1

Category: Exercise tips and advice | Published : October 24, 2016

Learning to stand – Fundamental 1

As a personal trainer I have always taught good posture, but only recently has it become one of my main focus’s with clients.
What is Standing?

Standing correctly puts you in a very strong position. Your spine is braced and in its ideal neutral position & your joints are aligned and in a strong position.

If you don’t take time to learn this position then how can you expect to have a strong spine and body in more dynamic positions like walking, running jumping or sport.

How to stand:

1) Start with the feet together, now create tension by squeezing your heels together. (This turns on your Glutes which intern covers the next point)

2)Create a neutral lower back by pull your abdomen in & your glutes.

3)Next rotate your thumbs out so your palms are facing forward. This rotation actives your rotator cuffs and scapular which allows your upper back into a neutral position.

4)Finally pull your head up – Imagine a helium balloon is attached to it.

This position should feel strong and stable.

How often to do this? 

It should be a position you automatically go into every time you stand. I recommend starting to do it 3 times a day, Once in the morning, after lunch and in the evening when you get home. Try to gradually build it up until it becomes automatic every time you stand.

Why I will be competing in the Crossfit open – The search for the “fittest man and women on earth”

Category: Monthly exercise challenge | Published : October 24, 2016

Why I will be competing in the Crossfit open – The search for the “fittest man and women on earth”

For the next 5 weeks I will be competing in the Crossfit open. Its the largest fitness competition in the world with last year over 209,000 athletes competing. The aim of the open is to find the fittest “man and women on earth”
There are hundreds of thousands of competitors from all over the world competing and you get to submit your scores and see how you compete.

Can they truly be called the fittest man or women on earth?
Well as with any sport that gets this large and popular it does favour professionals at this sport who become specialised at this sport rather than just pure randomised fitness, it still is by far the best overall judge of fitness across a vast array of challenges in the world. As it takes into account, endurance, speed, strength & power.

So how does the crossfit open work?
There are 5 workouts in total, each workout will be released individually in 1 week intervals. The competitors then have from thursday until monday to complete the workout (in front of a qualified judge at a crossfit box), and submit their scores.

The top 50 athletes in Europe then go on to compete at the european regionals, with the top 3 from this event going on to compete in the crossfit games with the other athletes from around the world to decide who is the fittest man and women on earth with a prize of $275,000 for the male and female winner.

What makes the open good fun:
Its a tough challenge and each time you submit a score you can then see where your score ranks you on the leaderboard and compare yourself to friends, across europe and the world.

You need no weaknesses, so if your training for the open you must work on becoming a well rounded athlete. This forces people to strengthen areas they would usually ignore and ultimately fixes chronic faults a lot of people would other wise just carry on ignoring and suffering from.

This is my third year competing and I am the most capable I have have been at all the movements. I am feeling fit but not crossfit specific fit at the moment as I have been focusing on loads of different fitness challenges like rugby and running. So it will be great to see how I will score.
Ultimately its so much fun competing in this event with the massive crossfit community worldwide, locally and at our box.

By Duncan Boltt

Contact details

Website: www.crossfitstagsanddoes.co.uk

Appreciation – one of the keys to happiness

Category: Exercise tips and advice | Published : October 24, 2016

Appreciation – one of the keys to happiness

Appreciation, its such a simple yet effective way to be happy right now. When you stop and appreciate what you have you realise, how much we do have. If you appreciate the people around you, your friends neighbours, customers even the check out lady, then suddenly your world is filled with good people.
If you look around your house and appreciate the cool stuff you have, you’ll be amazed you ever wanted more or needed more. How could you, chances are your home is completely full of enough interesting things to keep you busy for a lifetime.
But the problem is the modern world is designed to make us want more, to need to own bigger and better things? a faster car, a bigger house, better clothes, to discover some far off country when we haven’t even truly discovered a city 50 miles away which people on the other side of the world are desperate to discover.

So here is a great and simple tip you will have most likely come across before:

Every night just write a list of 3 things you appreciated from today.
It will get you in the habit of appreciating what you have.

If you like that one and want to go further, why not try to appreciate every stranger you come into contact with, Like the check out lady.
Appreciation really is a simple but powerful way to be more happy & content.

Duncan

The Top 3 Fitness Apps of 2015

Category: Exercise tips and advice | Published : October 24, 2016

The Top 3 Fitness Apps of 2015

Now you can take control of your fitness with your phone with the 3 Best Fitness Apps of 2015.

Note: This article is not sponsored and nor do we make any profit from the apps that we are promoting, they simply are the best!

Moves

Ever wondered how many calories you are actually burning in your day to day life? With Moves you can now monitor calories burnt when you walk, run and cycle all from having a phone in your pocket!

When set, it also automatically recognizes place in your daily life so that you know what you burnt and where!

You can set goals of the day with other fun options to see how many calories you burn going about your daily life.

Find Moves on the Google Play Market & the App Store

MyFitnessPal

MyFitnessPal is easily the best and most popular food tracking app on the market. With MyFitnessPal anything you eat, anywhere is on this massive food database within the app. This means that you can find out macros when out and about at a fast food chain for example, or make sure that you hit your macros for each and every day.

For someone who watches their diet this is a must have. Not only can you track calories and macro nutrients all organised into different parts of the day, you can also get quick access to food you’ve recently ate to make the process even faster.

Don’t worry. The quantity for each food can be altered too so that even if you eat half of something when you add it to MyFitnessPal it’s not a problem.

Find Moves on the Google Play Market & the App Store

Smart Alarm

The importance of sleep when building muscle and in general fitness as a whole has much significance. Sleep and rest is when you build the muscle you have worked so hard for over the day. It’s recommended that adults get around 8 hours of sleep every day.

Ever woke up feeling refreshed? That’s usually because you’ve woke up naturally at the end of a sleep cycle. When your alarm goes off in the middle of a sleep cycle (we have many per night) you wake up feeling very tired.

Smart Alarm monitors your sleep throughout the night to make sure you are awoken happy and ready to go at the end of a sleep cycle!

Find Moves on the Google Play Market & the App Store

MUD N MADNESS 2015 – A real Adventure race

Category: Uncategorized | Published : October 24, 2016

MUD N MADNESS 2015 – A real Adventure race

I came 6th in the Mud N madness adventure race yesterday, it was a fantastic event where they some how managed to combine a very tough physical challenge with adventure and a lot of fun. They did this seamlessly it was so much fun I was laughing a lot of the way often through gritted teeth because of the burning in my legs or shoulders on the 600m canoe, and it genuinely felt like an adventure with so many new and unexpected challenges like archery, canoeing , sumo wrestler fighting and more…
Me, Pawel and Aleksandra from Crossfit stags & does arrived early with the temperature at a chilly 3 degrees. On the walk to the changing rooms we got quick look at some of the obstacles we would be tackling, the water on the river crossing was completely frozen.
As always I managed to squeeze into the first heat, unlike other races we got a quick briefing on Archery (which paid off later) and how to put on a life Jacket properly and at speed.
Then there was no mucking about a 10 second countdown and we were off. Charging straight up and down a hill, then on to our first obstacle descending a large hill on a space hopper. This was my first real interaction with a space hopper on steep hill & I managed to subdue my hopper (I chose a red number) through a combination of intense concentration and bouncing. I made it down the hill with out being over taken by too many clearly gifted space hopper enthusiasts.
Once at the bottom me and a guy everyone was taunting on the hoppers called Lee sped off as we climbed another hill through trees, Lee was a quick runner and clearly one of the favourites so I tried to stay with him. After dodging several more space hoppers tied to trees and around 800m we came to a corner we came to a bit of a crossroads with a moments deliberation where I agreed left “looks good to me “ we carried on and encountered some serious mud and a lot of frozen puddles. We continued on up and down hills across the mud and ice until we came to the river. Lee had a 15m lead by this point but we both wadding across and then across a pontoon, lee had by this point dived into the water and swam to shore, but the race marshall informed me I could just stay on the pontoon so I chose this warmer option. As we both came out at around the same time 2 more marshall’s waved us down and informed us we had taken a wrong turn and should not be approaching the finish line just 8 minutes in.
We both laughed and opted to restart the race with the next wave.
So it feels a bit like ground hog day, back to the start, brief chat about the archery and life jacket then 10,9,8,7,6…
This time we start a little slower, and my space hopper skills have not improved but Lee (clearly a quick study) is flying on the hopper. Back to the woods, the hoppers in trees and then the crossroads, this time its obvious, why did we go left? We are back into the run and I am determined to keep up with Lee at least until the first main Challenge the Canoe, I suggest in between breaths that we team up and get a 2 man canoe to make up some ground. So I’m sprinting after lee so I don’t hold him back.
We both skilfully slip on the life jackets (more of a struggle in my case), and hop in the two man canoe, steering was tough as we made our way around the two red buoys either side of the massive lake. But we had plenty of time to rest our legs and had a relaxed chat about obstacle races, which Lee’s wife informed us later was comedy to listen to. We made up some good ground in the Canoe and I sped off and told Lee I would see him in a mo when he over took me. Which he promptly did and then I was largely on my own for the remained of the 4km course.
The next highlight was spotting and chatting to Pawel & Aleksandra as we ran along.
Now came the woods and loads of fun signs and random obstacles, On entering the land mine zone?! I first smelt and then passed the man who kindly shared his deep heat with me earlier in the changing room. Next signs informed me I was approaching a sumo zone? So I kept my eyes pealed for sumo wrestlers in the bushes waiting to pounce. Until I spotted both of the large lads blocking the path 100m ahead of me, I immediately took on the roll of an exhausted runner, right up until the last second where I side stepped left then right and boshed through the middle of both of them. Back to running again, the next challenge after at least a 1km run was the ice river crossing. I opted for the rope bridge for the first crossing then the wooden wobble bridge on my return. They really slowed me down as you just can’t go quick on incredibly unstable rope. So I had a good laugh with the canoeing marshals whilst doing this.
Next it was straight into the assault course jumping over and under logs, and through some very stinky tunnels, which I was dreading but quickly passed through, under some pretty severe barb wire, swinging across a ditch on a rope and then on to the Archery.
In order to move on on this challenge you had to get at least a blue on the target. So I calmly took on the poisoner of Kevin Costner in Body guard (kneeling down in the woods and shooting the assassin with his eyes closed) I knelt down and breathed in and released, Just clipping the blue line which I was informed “would do”. Next a real random bit of fun I was informed I had to dodge 4 quick kids to touch a wall behind them, if I was touched i would have to start again. So again I brought out my trusty side step and managed to make one lad fall over then Back to running.
Now was the hardest slog running wise it was around a 2km run through some seriously mud and ice. The staff were great though and I even got a high five from a kid. I decided to kick on and start running here and found my legs again.
Finally I was back to where me and Lee had been 40 minutes earlier, the lake this time my mate and race organiser Adam was there to spur me on. I ran across the tyres in the river back on to the pontoons and up a hill to the army Zone, with Adam spurring me on and a coach shouting at me I pushed hard through the 10 press, 10 burpees, 10 sit ups and 10 jump squats. The Jump squats were really tough and my legs were not chuffed at all.
Then down a hill over a few obstacles and to the crocodile run.
This was great fun and someone with a good sense of humour must have come up with this surreal scene. I grabbed an inflatable crocodile and ran out into the middle of a lake & back on a very unstable piece of foam.
Next the final stretch, a maze of metal gates and into the beer tent, I was not sure what to expect as pre race I had heard talk of downing a pint here. So my stomach was relieved to see I had to run a full barrel of beer 20m and back. I popped it on my shoulder and managed to over take someone on this one.
Next it was a sprint to the finish, diving over a hurdle of flames and across the line.
There was a great crew of athletes at the end as there always is after these fun and challenging events waiting to chat and laugh with new friends and old as they crossed the line. I had a good laugh with Lee who I later found out runs Muddy Kit (and came 2nd overall) & thanked Adam for his support.
After a shower (yes a warm shower! this event really is well organised!!) and putting on some warm clothes I met up with Pawel and Aleksandra and we grabbed a well shook up beer from the tent and went over to the Crocodile run to watch several people fall in and reflect on the fantastic fun we all had on this event. We chatted some other competitors who had taken quite a few attempts on the archery and one poor lad had to redo the run with the kids 3 times before they eventually let him pass, apparently the stubborn sumos had been reluctant to let any one pass and had been pinning quite a few people down mid race which definitely wouldn’t have happen to ex judo champ Aleksandra and 6 foot 5 tall Pawel. I must remember to ask them on Monday what they did when confronted with the wrestlers…

It was such a fun event I highly recommend it, it was also incredibly well run by One step beyond, all the marshalls and helpers made in a lot of fun. Ill definitely do this one next year, and ill maybe spend a little more attention to the directions.

Mud N madness race: http://www.onestepbeyond.org.uk/mud-n-madness-adventure-race.php
Facebook page: Muddy Kit https://www.facebook.com/MuddyKit.co.uk?pnref=lhc
Muddy Kit website: http://www.muddykit.co.uk

Contact details

Website: www.onestepbeyond.org.uk/mud-n-madness-adventure-race.php

Walk the south west coast path

Category: Monthly exercise challenge | Published : October 24, 2016

Walk the south west coast path

This looks like a fantastic challenge which will involve seeing some of the best coast line in the UK. It’s also England’s longest national trail. It’s a 630 mile hike.
Starting in Minehead in Somerset and covering the southwest tip of England finishing in Pool.
At a brisk pace this would take at least a month, by why would you do it at a brisk pace, I think it would be much better to complete it in around 6-8 weeks and really enjoy this part of the uk.
It has been rated one of the best trails to be found in the world by the lonley planet & voted Britain’s best walking route.
If 8 weeks off is out of the question for walk? Then they recommend breaking it up into chunks. I personally really want to do this as I love this part of our coastline. (Duncan)

Contact details

Website: www.southwestcoastpath.com/multi-day-trips/630-mile-experience/

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