Winter Body Tips

Most of us find it really tough keeping up our exercise and nutrition goals in Winter. Is it any wonder? Short dark days, long nights, cold weather. It’s all to easy to skip the workout when you look out the window and see the rain falling. Plus the cold makes us crave comfort food (we’re swaddled in big clothes anyway..!)

Firstly, don’t be too hard on yourself. A lack of natural light can lead to a vitamin D deficiency (since we synthesise vitamin D from sunlight) which can in turn, lead to fatigue and depression. Even in mild cases, you’ll feel like you can’t be bothered to hit the gym or do a workout. Throw in cold weather and your body starts to crave the energy hits of sugars and starches from “heavier” carbs.

So now we know it’s normal to feel a bit ropey – we can take responsibility for addressing it. The winter months don’t have to be the time you let yourself go, only to give yourself more of a mountain to climb as Spring comes.

Yes it’s OK to enjoy Christmas festivities with canapés and mince pies – but don’t let it get out of control.

And remember – Summer Bodies Are made In Winter!

Here’s our top ten tips on how to stay on track…

1. Set some goals and be accountable
Arguably the most important tip here. Nail this and the rest will fall into place. Set yourself some training and/or body goals, and check in with them frequently. Make yourself accountable by publicly sharing them within a supportive space. Countless psychological studies show that setting and checking in with goals makes you more likely to achieve them than not (duh!) but also that telling trusted others (who support you) makes you more likely to succeed. A place like our Academy community is perfect – our members post their goals, their progress and are supported on their journey ( – you have the benefit of being with a like-minded tribe. A close friend, partner or family member is another option.

2. HIIT it up
We get it, you don’t want to spend hours of your week training. Neither do we. HIIT delivers cardio-vascular, conditioning and fat burning benefits in 15 – 20 minutes of intense activity. It’s our go to way of training and a time effective way to keep to your body goals. Top tip – if you’re looking to reduce body fat go for it fasted first thing in the morning.

3. Take it outside
Outside the weather might be frightful but there is some great technical gear out there now to keep you warm and dry. Working out outside has been proven to boost your mood – cue Vitamin D. Plus, how good will that hot shower feel coming in from a workout in the cold?

4. Buddy up
See accountability in Tip 1 above…find a workout partner. You’ll have someone on the same journey as you, experiencing the same things. Support each other and you’ll find you’ll get there quicker, with more fun. Claire and I make each other accountable – mainly because we don’t want to let the other one down!
The good news is we’re launching a FREE 2 WEEK CHALLENGE on Facebook in January, where we’ll be posting our eating and exercise routine every day. We’ll be your buddies and you’ll be ours – burning off that festive excess and cheering each other on. Look out for details coming soon…

5. Gear up
New workout gear can make you feel more inspired to train. I see Claire lift heavier when she’s flouncing around in her new Nikes (not that she needs more encouragement to buy lycra!) Maybe add some workout gear to the Christmas list…?

6. Workout at home
These days you really can workout anywhere, anytime. Sites like YouTube and Vimeo have workout videos galore. We have hundreds of REAL TIME workout videos in our Academy – which is like having our own PT in your living room. And it’s for every level of fitness.

7. Enjoy the good stuff but moderate
Christmas comes but once a year, but the Christmas excess can feel like it will take a year to shift! Instead of over-indulging, make the conscious choice to enjoy what’s on offer – in moderation. Mince pies are yummy, but how many do you really need each week? Every time you’re tempted, pause and remember your goal (visualise it!) Think about this choice point and whether it is moving you forward or back.

8. Start a new programme
Learning stimulates new neural pathways, so why not start a new training and nutrition programme? You’ll be working your mind as well as your body, meaning you’re more engaged in the process, and get results. We’re launching a 40 Plus Back To Fitness 4 Week programme for the new year.
This is a complete, 4 week, done for you course with real time workout videos, meal plans, recipes and motivational emails to keep you on track. Look out of the launch (we already have a waiting list!)

9. Boost your vitamin D
Always check with your health professional before supplementing, BUT – in the winter you’ll benefit from a Vit D supplement. We also love waking up to light rather than the shrill of an alarm – so consider a light alarm clock that wakes you up gradually. They’re not too expensive these days and for us they make a huge difference to they way we feel.

10. Book a holiday
Booking a holiday not only gives you something to look forward to, but you can use it to reinforce your goals or help you set some for the future. We have it all covered at our Marbella retreats. Fitness, Mindset, Nutrition and winter sun. Surrounded by 5 star luxury.

Our Body:Reset retreat is running at the stunning Puente Romano Marbella from January 10th to 13th…so get in touch if you want to grab one of the last few spots… click here for details

5 De-Bloating Hacks

There’s nothing worse than putting on your jeans and feeling like you’ve ballooned overnight. But before you spiral into a deep depression, know that most people confuse weight gain with bloating and water retention. And we admit – there’s nothing worse than feeling like a whoopy cushion. So let’s look at 5 ways you can de-bloat in just 3 days.

1. Reduce your salt intake
When you eat sodium you body retains water, which can then cause bloating. So make sure you drink at least 2l of water a day to flush you out and most importantly be aware of hidden salt in your food – it’s everywhere….especially packaged goods!

2. Choose your fruit and veg wisely
Although your five a day are full of nutrients and will benefit your health, if you’re feeling bloated, here’s some advice. Choose your fruit and veg wisely. Some fruit has a higher sugar content than others and can bloat you out – so go for options like blueberries, strawberries and oranges as they have less. Choose vegetables wisely too. Broccoli and cauliflower although yummy are loaded with raffinose – which is the same compound that produces gassiness when you eat beans. Need we say more….

3. Chew with your mouth closed
It’s not always what you eat, but how you eat. Chatting away during a meal means you’re letting air in the digestive tract. Slowing down eating means you’ll digest food easier, which can also lead to less bloating. Talk between bites not during chewing!

4. Don’t overdo the fibre
Fibre is great and eating it will keep you feeling fuller for longer. The problem comes when you go from eating very little fibre to eating more. This happens a lot when people go on ‘diets’ or change to a healthier approach. You need to expect a little amount of readjustment in the gut. Our advice – if you’re heading for a special event, just watch your fibre intake for a few days.

5. Ditch the carbonated drinks
Last one – you must ditch the carbonated drinks as they deliver air straight to your gut. Your body will feel like a distended gas works – plus they frequently have lots of other nasties in them. As boring as it sounds – stick to water!


We’re now well into our Ibiza 2017 season and we wanted to share with you some key things you can expect when joining our retreats – that will transform the way you train, eat and live!

These FIVE LEARNINGS are the essential pillars of what we teach and feedback from clients says it shines through in everything we do. It’s our passion for sustainable wellness that sets us apart from the ‘bootcamp’ style fitness holiday. Plus you get to stay in luxury beach side accommodation – with sea views, incredible food, first class service, free wifi, spa treatments and not a room share in sight!

So dive in to discover the FIVE things you’ll learn at our retreats that makes us different…. 


Our big focus isn’t just to help you blast fat, get fit and have fun – it’s about giving you the tools and knowledge to go home and continue to make positive changes in your life.

Not only will the training be varied, effective and fast, but during our Mindset Workshop, we’ll share the hints and tips we’ve used with hundreds of clients (and ourselves) to stay on track and smash goals.

‘Mind fitness’ is an essential pillar to our retreats because it’s super important clients understand that changes to the body start with the way we think. And it’s not just experience that gives the core team an insight into how to stay motivated – James holds a degree in psychology and a masters in applied psychology, Rob was a senior NCO in the British Army for many years and Claire is an NLP practitioner, life coach and former business coach for Microsoft.


It doesn’t matter how hard you train, if your diet is full of sugar, fat and processed food, your progress will be slow, if at all. Your dream body is made in the kitchen, not just in the gym, but we understand it can be a minefield. That’s why we run a Nutrition Workshop with Anna our Nutritional Therapist on every retreat. The lovely Anna gives you a whole heap of information, tips and tools to make the ‘right’ choices that will compliment your training. You can also request a one on one session with her for a more in-depth look at your lifestyle and nutritional needs.

You do not have to be ALL or NOTHING. We teach you how to stay fit, healthy and looking good, while maintaining balance in your life. We don’t kill ourselves every day at the gym and so we wouldn’t expect you to. We show you how we, in our late thirties and mid forties are in the best shape of our lives, without skipping the ‘naughty’ meals out, wine and chocolate. Denial leads to extreme behavior – a bouncing backwards and forwards. And that doesn’t make for a happy person!


We get bored easily and imagine you do too. We’re also busy people and were in the corporate rate race in London until six years ago. We know the stresses, strains and time constraints so we make sure we give you ‘realistic’ ways to get maximum results in minimal time. You can do it when travelling, before the kids get up or in the park at lunchtime….no equipment needed!

We don’t advocate ‘weight loss’ – but we do encourage fat loss – as long as it’s healthy and one of your goals. Weight isn’t a good indicator of progress. But fat loss is. Muscle weighs more than fat, so it could be that as you get leaner and tighter, your weight stays the same or goes up. That’s why we never weigh ourselves! We’ll help you understand that the way you look and feel is the best measurement of success!

Here’s what some of this year’s clients have said:

“Great workouts, fun times. Attended the Easter bootcamp in Ibiza with about 20 people. The workouts were hard but fun and there was no pressure to do more than you wanted to. Everyone was encouraged and motivated but if a particular session wasn’t for you then that was pool time! People wanted different things out of the break in addition to exercise – me time, health kick and others (like me!) some fun in the evenings. Great to meet new people and new friends. Will definitely return and cannot recommend it highly enough. Claire, James and Rob are great trainers and fun to be around – not so much love for the bleep test……” Victoria, April 2017

“You’re mind, body, and soul will thank you for it. Fantastic, energising, mind blowing weekend of sun, fun, and exercise. We met new friends, set personal goals and broke them, jumped, pumped, slammed and stretched, and it felt good. What was really awesome, as well, is that we became yoga converts, all thanks to the lovely instructor, Anna. 38 Degrees North Rocks!”, Dee, April 2017

Enquire Now


Claire and I had THE best time training our first group in Marbella last weekend. Helped not only by having an awesome, friendly and focused bunch of people to share it with, but the sun shone, the resort was unbelievable and we did most of our sessions on the beach! Seriously – Puente Romano is one hell of a resort!

BUT….it wasn’t the best start: a tyre blow out pre-dawn on the way to catch our early flight to Marbella. Cue almost two hours in minus four by the side of the road while we waited for recovery. A new tire, new flights and nine hours later, we reached Puente Romano. And we’re not gonna lie – we enjoyed a glass of red when we settled in!

Clients arrived the following day, so after the morning rushing around making sure everything was ready, we were straight into it. Oh, did we mention that it was sheeting with rain when we arrived, and that when we woke the mountain tops fringing the coast were covered in snow?! Something people who’ve lived there all their lives have never seen… Not quite the winter sun we were expecting.

Anyway, unperturbed and under a grey sky – we welcomed in a full group, full of assurances the sun would come out – and lo and behold, by the end of the fitness benchmark session, the sun popped its head out!

To summarise – we had three blissful (but tough training) days of life affirming pre-dawn workouts or runs, watching the sun rise over the still sea. Breakfast was had in the early morning sunlight, followed by challenging but fun HIIT training on the deserted beach, a nutrition workshop, goal setting, spinning, Insanity, yoga, boxing….

It was a real privilege to watch people transform and grow in confidence, even in such a short time. Everyone gave it their all, and by the time we rolled into Joe’s Bar for a final evening’s celebratory drink, each and every person had earned it.

Life’s about balance. Above all we want whoever comes on our retreats to have fun, and feel SOOOO good when they leave. We achieved that. Now we can’t wait for the next one…just three weeks to go!

Why not join us? We’d love to see you…

Here’s what a few clients said…..

“Brilliant people, brilliant hotel, brilliant food and a generally cracking time all-round!”

“An inspirational few days with some GORGEOUS people!”

“What a fantastic weekend. We both thoroughly enjoyed ourselves and are already working out when we can do another one!

New NHS Health Survey – The Shocking Truth

80% of women and 87% of men in England aged 40-60 are OVERWEIGHT, DRINK TOO MUCH and get TOO LITTLE EXERCISE. Key findings of a survey carried out by the NHS – released earlier this week, called One You.

Pretty sobering right?! AND….we have the highest levels of obesity in Western Europe – trebling in the last 30 years. Half the population could be obese by 2050 given current estimations……

If you’re one of the 2 in 10 that the NHS considers healthy – congratulations! It’s an amazing achievement.

If you’re one of the 8 in 10 struggling with diet, exercise and alcohol…clearly you’re not alone.

But knowing you’re not alone can often lead to apathy. Are you someone that knows you should exercise more, get your diet cleaned up, stop the bottle of wine a night? But you don’t. And are we right in thinking it leads to a level of self-loathing?

So – we want you to take this question seriously.

What are you going to do differently so that you’re not out of breath walking up the stairs, so you can get in that wedding dress this summer? So you don’t feel embarrassed walking into a party?

No…it’s not a crash diet or liposuction?! It’s about changing what you DO and THINK. This time of year is PERFECT FOR TRANSFORMATION. You do have time, you do have the energy, you do have the willpower.

Not honouring and respecting your body leads to depression, illness and a short life. That’s the hard truth right there. So get yourself into that small percentage of people – kick out the excuses, clean up your life and feel PROUD.

Here’s THREE STEPS to getting started:

1. Accept where you are. Go check out the excellent NHS One You website where you can not only take a fun quiz assessing your current health levels, but find loads of useful information on managing your diet, smoking, drinking, sleep, stress and exercise.

2. Make ONE key fitness and health goal. Write it down. Get detailed – a goal without a plan is pointless!

3. Commit. When, where and how are you going to make this happen? Tell a buddy who can keep you accountable.

Our long weekend fitness retreats (UK and Marbella) are designed to give you the ultimate kickstart you need. We not only train you, but talk you through habits, goal setting, motivation and nutrition. You get access to TWO experienced coaches who’ve helped hundreds of people transform their body and mind. We not only get you leaner and lighter, but educate you so you’re confident and full of energy to sustain a new way of living.

If you think this is something you could do with – drop us an email at

Oh and we’d love to hear your thoughts on the survey ☺

Have a happy, healthy day.


Pic: @captain_potter

Holiday Fitness Tips

  • Get into your routine early. It might be tempting to flop straight onto the sun lounger (it is your holiday after all) but don’t leave it too late into your break to start training. One day will lead to another and before you know it you’ll be packing to leave without having broken a sweat. Do something on day one, even if it’s just a short run, swim or gym session.
  • Look for local facilities, and use them. Focus on what you do have, not what you don’t. If you’re hotel gym is basic use your imagination and throw in body weight moves. If there’s no gym, find running routes, make up a body weight circuit, swim or just take the family for a walk.
  • Find a time that works. If you’re away with mates or family, work out when they might want to join you, or else pick a time when it will have least impact on everyone else. Our suggestion, get up a little earlier, train, and meet the rest of your gang for breakfast.
  • Take the stairs. If your hotel has lifts, try taking the stairs instead for a little boost.
  • Watch the buffet. A massive food spread may look great, but multiple trips to refill will give you a different kind of spread… try to go for lean proteins and leafy greens first – they’ll fill you up and hopefully that cheesecake won’t look quite so appealing.
  • Buy some fruit. Get into the habit of carrying some fruit around with you in case you get the nibbles. Much healthier than a bag of crisps. Or that bowl of chips…
  • Booze brilliantly by picking clear spirits like gin or vodka with soda water and lemon or lime, or low calorie tonic. Less calories and less of a heavy head in the morning. Pina Colada’s look good and taste great, but a combination of cream, fruit, rum will have your calorie dial turned right up to 11. Avoid the fancy cocktails and keep it simple.
  • Less is more. Some exercise is better than none at all, even a 4 minute Tabata will help, so download a Tabata app and punch out squat jumps, press ups, whatever takes your fancy. It’s only 4 minutes, why not do it twice?
  • Go local, loads of hotels and resorts have fitness activities these days, ranging from aqua aerobics, to yoga, to circuits and more. Get involved and try something different.
  • Have fun! It’s your holidays and life’s about balance, so keep moving but remember to have a good time too.
Sign Up For Our Midlife Newsletter
We respect your privacy.
Thank you! Your subscription has been confirmed. You'll hear from us soon.