How To Cheat Death! Well, Almost…

We all want the miracle cure. The pill, the potions, the surgery – anything that might make us look and feel younger.

Well – we thought we’d let you into a science backed secret that’s pretty important you know about. We’re nice like that 🙂

If you remember, last week I wrote about science based ways to train that improve short term Human Growth Hormone production. It’s an incredibly important hormone for longevity of life.

Why? Because HGH leads to increased strength, lean muscle mass, decreased body fat, improved bone density and a faster, more efficient metabolism, as well as having other regenerative benefits. Oh and it also improves mood, energy, sleep and skin tone.

As we age however, it reduces dramatically. Meaning the benefits we get from it begin to diminish.

But we can cheat it.

So how…?

Well, exercise in general will give a short term boost in HGH and the great news is – specific ways of training can amplify the effect for best results.

To recap that is short bursts of HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) of no longer than 20 minutes. Followed by resistance training (weight bearing exercise) straight after if possible.

What’s exciting is two more studies not only reinforce the health benefits of varied training that we’ve mentioned above, but actually link exercise to life longevity in a HUGE study.

The first study looked at 4400 adults aged 50 or older who had their strength and muscle mass assessed between 1999 and 2002. The study checked in 2011 who was still living (I know a bit grim sorry!)

Incredibly those assessed with low muscle strength were over twice as likely to have died…

Interestingly muscle mass didn’t have an effect, it was purely the strength result. So functional strength decreases your mortality risk, as well as having plenty of other all around health benefits.

The second study looked at data from 80,000 adults in England and Scotland who’d completed surveys about physical activity during the 1990s.

The headline from this study is that those who’d done any kind of strength training were 23 percent less likely to have died during the study period, and 31% less likely to have died of cancer.

However, before you ditch your cardio and start lifting the weights, you might want to know this fact: those who did strength training and aerobic exercise had a 29% reduction in mortality. That’s almost a third…

In summary, mixing up strength training with aerobic activity not only gives you all kind of hormonal and health benefits, but can significantly reduce your mortality risk.

You’ll live longer, and because you’re training this way, you’ll have a better quality of life too.

This is exactly how we train, how we set up our programmes, how we train our clients. We’re looking for varied, challenging training that’s fun, and not only meets aesthetic goals, but delivers health goals over the long term. Now the data suggests it can also prolong your life.

Love to hear your thoughts and questions, so feel free to give us a shout.

Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2018 Mar;50(3):458-467

American Journal of Epidemiology. Volume 187, Issue 5, May 2018, Pages 1102–1112


Thank goodness emaciated heroin chic went out with the 90s/ early 2000s. Now women all over the place are posting pics of themselves ripped, honed and toned. It’s become aspirational to look fit, strong and healthy. Hoorah!

But understandably, lifting weights can often be a baffling minefield to most women. Some because they wouldn’t even know how to begin getting a body like that and others because they think that if they lift weights, they will end up looking like a shot putter!

So what’s the real deal with lifting?

Firstly – in order to look like those bikini competitors and fitness models on Instagram, it takes unbelievable commitment and time. Think intense weight lifting regimes, a full on fat blasting cardio program, plus a nutrition plan that would make most of us run a mile. It’s VERY hard to build that level of muscle for women and they make it through hours of sheer hard work.

But FYI – don’t be disheartened – you can still get a lean, strong, sculpted body through training and eating well 80% of the time – like me ☺ (I could never give myself over to the kind of discipline it takes to compete, because I like my occasional wine and pizza too much!)

The next point is huge so listen up. You will NEVER get a toned, tight body without doing some resistance training…i.e lifting weights or at the very least body weight exercises. I know this because I was the girl in my twenties that just did cardio and was so disheartened that my body shape never changed – I just got lighter and thinner! I did not look shapely, tight or toned.

Now I know better, I do weights five times a week – targeting my upper and lower body. And guess what – I don’t think I look like a guy! It’s about education, trial and error and committing to a new way of training – without quitting when you don’t get results in the first 2 weeks. Don’t be like most of society and expect quick fixes. There aren’t any. It’s pure non-stoppable motivation that will get you the body of your dreams.

I’m fortunate that I now know how to create a shapely bottom without bulking up my quads. Same goes for my back – I know how to banish the fatty areas, without getting wider. I know the rep ranges and sets I should do – and how heavy to go depending on what I want to achieve. But I clearly didn’t always know this. I got help and advice. And then moved into the fitness profession in my mid thirties.



Comments from the last group of 4 Week Beach Body Babes!

“Been a hellish week of child illness and boiler eruptions so taken me awhile to log on. But despite knowing that I have been appalling on the food (and wine!) side of things I have lost 3kg which was about what I was hoping for. Better than that though I have lost 4cm on my waist, 3.5 on my calfs and 1 cm of my arms and thighs!! But best of all I feel much stronger. So I am going to keep going with all of this, keep attempting to sort out my food and if you decide to do another one of these put me on the list please!!!
Thanks for a great four weeks!!!x” Sara – March 2017

“I can see the difference in how I look particularly round my mid section and arms which are the two areas I wanted to work on. I feel so much better. I have more energy and have genuinely enjoyed getting up at stupid o’clock and working out in my garage!! I’ll definitely continue this in some shape or form! There also lots of foody things I’m not really missing so will try and continue with some of these new habits too.
So thank you Claire – it’s been great to have you all here for support and this little journey. Well done all! X” Zoe, March 2017

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