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Healthy advent calendars It’s nearly that time of the year when it’s socially acceptable to eat chocolate for breakfast! But if you’re looking for something different this Christmas, we’ve done the research for you and here’s our countdown to some of the healthiest and alternative advent calendars on the market:  My Protein For £4.99 My Protein has launched the ultimate - with 25 individual high-protein chocolate pieces with added whey protein in a festive advent calendar. So even the most serious gym fanatic can enjoy the build-up to Christmas with a sweet treat every day but still manage to keep... Read more

5 fun facts about YOUR BODY  How much air do you think you breathe every hour? Astonishingly it’s about 2.1-3.17 gallons of air per minute while resting, which is 126-190 gallons per hour. Of course if you’re exercising, then you can expect this amount to increase to almost 2377 gallons per hour for the average person. Your heart pumps almost 2000 gallons of blood each day! Your brain and heart are both about 73% water. Blood circulates through your body very quickly. In fact, it only takes about 60 seconds for all of your blood to circulate through your entire... Read more

Cruciferous vegetables are one of the best things you can include in your diet and are the nutritional backbone of a healthy diet. For better health and performance, regularly including broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, turnips and kale in your weekly meal plan can play a crucial role in building a strong and healthy body.  Vegetables are loaded with vitamins and minerals that are crucial for your general health and muscle growth. All are loaded with phytochemicals, vitamins, minerals, and fibre - all of which help prevent chronic illnesses including type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and even cancer.  If you're wondering... Read more

The Facts About Protein Repair, maintain and grow While carbohydrates are the body's favoured source of fuel, protein plays a huge part in the repair, maintenance and growth of body tissues. It also plays a role in the energy and muscle preservation needs of athletes and those following intense programmes. Protein is especially important after a workout, as during exercise your muscle protein breaks down – mixing carbs and proteins makes it easier for your body to absorb the protein whilst it undergoes repair during post-workout recovery, turning it into muscle mass.  Protein should make up 10 to 15% of your daily calorie intake. ... Read more

Strength Training - The Power To Succeed You can improve your strength by increasing the weight and dropping the number of reps you do. Strength training has many other health benefits, including increases bone density, builds a stronger heart, reduces your resting blood pressure, improves blood flow, halts muscle loss and helps control blood sugar…  These fun facts show more benefits of strength training:  60% of people who weight train get an average of 7 hours or more of sleep per night. Add strength training to your cardio to speed up fat loss. Cardio alone can actually burn muscle tissue, and you need muscle tissue to burn... Read more

Eat Smart On-The-Go! Eating on the go doesn’t have to mean junk food. There are healthier alternatives if you need a quick, filling and delicious snack,  without a side order of guilt.  Try one of these faster health food alternatives; Swap wraps for a no bread sandwich - you could try substituting bread when making a sandwich with a large lettuce leaf or another green such as kale. Fill it with your favourite cooked meat, replace mayonnaise with some Greek yoghurt – roll the leaf for a quick high protein snack. If you’re looking for something a bit more filling, had some avocado... Read more

The Healthy Way To Snack Did you know that not all snacks are unhealthy? There are some smart snacks which help boost your brain and are brilliant workday treats:  Get Green - although a cup of green tea doesn’t contain quite as much caffeine as regular tea or coffee, it does contain L-theanine, an amino acid that triggers the release of alpha waves in the brain. The result…increased focus and attention.  Sharp as a berry - eating flavonoid-rich blueberries increases the flow of nutrient rich blood to the brain. The result… improved cognitive functions which help you tackle more challenging tasks with ease.  Brain boost... Read more

How To Avoid Gym Injuries No-one intends getting injured, but it’s common amongst frequent gym-goers and happen too often. Injuries are setbacks and obstacles to your goals, they limit or even stop your ability to work out and sometimes even doing normal everyday activities such as walking, sitting or driving can be a challenge.  Poor exercise techniques are the most common cause of weight training injuries, or they occur as a result of fatigue, overuse, or improper use of a muscle. There are a number of ways to help prevent injury:  1.Warm-up and cool-down. Every workout should begin with a warm-up and end with a... Read more

Why Some Gym Goers Wear Gloves Do you wear gloves while weight training? Some gym goers swear by them and wouldn’t even think of lifting weights without protecting their hands, others don’t see the benefit. Our Elite Body Squad weight lifting gloves have always been a popular choice, and here are 5 good reasons why:  Better grip – this has to be one of the main benefits for wearing them, especially when your hands get sweaty and you’re holding heavy dumbbells  or barbells. The Elite Body Squad glove has added padding to primary grip points and easy breathe stretchable mesh Lycra on the back of the... Read more

Smart Fitness Wear The sports market is full of fitness-obsessed products, and as the trend for sportswear which is sweat, grease and stain-proof reaches an all-time high, there’s a growing demand for activewear - sporty fashion for both the gym and the street.  Yet as activewear is booming in the market, there’s an explosion of another kind on the horizon. Tech wear.  Big-name tech companies such as Samsung and Google have started to think about ways to make the clothes we wear as smart as the phone in your pocket or the watch on your wrist. In fact, Google is already working with... Read more

Staying Motivated The most popular day to exercise is “tomorrow.” Motivating yourself to go to the gym or workout can be a real struggle and we can always come up with a good enough reason not to go. Sometimes you’re tired, sick or simply not in the mood. And once the clocks change next month, getting yourself into the gym or heading out for a run on cold dark mornings and evenings takes a lot more motivation than it might do right now.  It’s often said that getting fit and staying healthy is all in the mind: it’s a matter of motivation.... Read more

Ten Facts You Probably Don’t Know The largest muscle in your body is your bum (well, the gluteus maximus muscle, to be more exact)! 25% of your bones are located in your feet. Romance in the gym? A study conducted by Nuffield Health found that of their 2000 participants, 10.5% of members actually live with someone they met at the gym. Runners stretching before running can burn 5% fewer calories than those who do not. Swimming can reduce the mortality rate in males at least by a half. Exercisers could enhance their own performance by about 15% if they listen to music whilst working out. People... Read more

Take Your Workout Outdoors Elite Body Squad is a huge fan of go-anywhere training plans – if you want a break from the gym, the great outdoors offers plenty of space to work out, burn fat and build muscle. They can be incorporated into your own regular training regime, but by heading outdoors whilst the sun is still (occasionally!) shining, it’s time to get out and keep moving.  Circuit training in parks has been a way to enjoy the outdoors for some time, but there are lots of other places you can do even the simplest of exercises; from push ups and sumo squats... Read more

You’d Never Guess What’s In The Bag You can tell a lot about what we pack in our gym bag – they are, after all, our ultimate survival kit when we hit the gym! Packing the right gear can help motivate you to reach your fitness goals and make for a healthier, more effective workout session.  Are you super organised and pack your bag at night so it’s ready to grab and go in the morning? Are you one of those people who gets to the gym and realised you’ve forgotten your essentials? We asked our Ambassadors to reveal what essential items they kept in their gym... Read more

Not All Mats Are The Same How To Stay Healthy In The Gym   You may not consider an exercise mat as an essential part of your workout wardrobe, but they’re very handy to have if you regularly do floor-based strength training moves such as crunches and stretching exercises. They can absorb some of the impact whilst exercising and provide cushioning between you and the floor during general floor exercise. You’ll get better traction on an exercise mat too, as they don’t tend to slip on polished or wooden floors. They're also worthwhile to have if you regularly take pilates or yoga classes.  Gyms aren’t always... Read more