New personal programmes!

Beach body ready

Summer is approaching and I don’t know about you but in July there will be a sun bed in Egypt with my name on it! Want to prepare for that new bikini or those snazzy swim shorts? The weight loss plan will get you in ship shape for beach selfies and the “Summer reading” but really i’m showing off my legs photos! The fitness instructor will check your BMI, consult your on your diet and put a plan together to beat the bulk.

The Incredible Hulk

Or maybe you want to beef up for the beach? The Strength and Size Personal Programme will get you running to the shops for bigger clothes in no time. Get your current routine check over by the team and get tips on new exercises, frequency and intensity. The fitness instructor will take you through everything, improving your technique and helping you make the most out of our facilities.

Fitness Fanatic

Do you live on the top floor too? Find yourself gasping for breath by the time you get through the door? You need a programme to increase your fitness. Your fitness instructor will base your programme on functional equipment and compound exercise, to prevent those awkward pit stops when climbing the stairs.

Now you’re faced with the question. Which fitness instructor do you choose? Check out our blog on which fitness instructors are best for you.

Student competition!

Calling all UEL Students! Want to win a free personal programme? email Lukas Volskis at with your name, student number and contact details!

5 Tips to stay healthy….

by Jasmine Wing

Always thought going to the gym and calorie counting had no appeal to you what so ever? And you’ve heard it all before, ‘cut out the junk food; have your five a day; go running; blah blah blah…’ well this isn’t one of those articles. Here are five practical and easy steps to the new you! 

  • Tip 1 – Fail to plan, plan to fail! One of the best ways to get on the right track for thinking healthier is planning your food, taking seconds from your day to consider your food intake for the week will save you time, money and help you curb your unnecessary bad eating habits. Plan meals, don’t skip them! 
  • Tip 2 – Bat your way to a healthier you. Why not ask a friend to come play a game of badminton for 30 minutes once a week? Having fun whilst exercising is a great way to get fit without realising it
  • Tip 3 – No more late night snacking. Try not to eat 3-4 hours before you go to sleep. Eating before bed is likely to store unwated fat due to a slower digestive system in the evenings, sound easy enough? Why not challenge yourself for a week! 
  • Tip 4 – Phone a friend. Find someone who also wants to start looking after their body and challenge each other to start being healthier. Encouragement from others is a key to success when making lifestyle changes. 
  • Tip 5 – A helping hand. Lastly, ask one of our fitness instructors at SportsDock to show you an exercise that you may not have tried before or something completely new that will help you to reach your goal in notime.  

Choosing a Fitness Instructor

Name: Sarina Duggall          Age: 29          Specialisms: Pregnancy

Sarina is firm but fair when writing personal plans. She likes a good balance between weights and cardio and uses them both to help build muscle and burn fat. Sarina isn’t a believer in fad diets and gives members nutrition advice they can use in the long term.

Choose if: You like Olympic lifting

Name: Alex Hibbert          Age:  29        Specialisms: Fitness development

Alex likes to focus on resistance exercises involving bands. He is currently helping clients prepare for Tough Mudder and pushes people until they realise their potential. He’s tough but you know it’s for your own good.

Choose if: You are training for an event and like functional training.

Name: Kyran Arusalm         Age: 21         Specialisms: Female body

Kyran is a shock to the system, he comes across as kind and caring but as soon as you stop so does his watch. He loves a good resistance cardio workout so if you want to develop your stamina he’s your guy…every exercise is his favourite exercise.

Choose if: You need tough love

Name: Kef Ras-Kassa          Age: 24         Specialisms: Combat Conditioning

Kef describes himself as a drill master and likes a lot of body weight floor work. If you need someone who will push you and give a bootcamp style workout this is your guy. Kef is trained in martial arts so ask him to mix things up a little.

Choose if: You like floor work and burpees!

Name: Pedro De Jesus          Age: 26    Specialisms: Diet and nutrition

Pedro is the go to for those who aren’t too sure about the gym. He’s holistic in targeting your diet as well as your exercise routine to help you lose weight. Pedro likes to use a lot of equipment, you’ll leave your session well informed.

Choose if: You need to change your diet as much as your exercise

Name: Kim Baptiste         Age:   22       Specialisms: Athlete Training

Kim is described by her colleagues as the toughest of them all! If you want someone who will set the bar high and put you through your paces she’s your gall. She focus’ on own body weight workouts and her favorite exercise is the box jump so prepare yourself!

Choose if: You like strength and conditioning

Feel the burn

Exercise After burn- the secret way to weight loss
So you want to lose weight and look good for the winter party session that is fast approaching! Well you need to know about ‘Exercise Afterburn.’
Exercise Afterburn, or it’s more official name Excess post-oxygen consumption (EPOC)- what a ring it has to it, is the way to burn calories even after you have stopped exercising. It’s the processes that helps to restore the body to a resting state after intense anaerobic or aerobic exercise.

In short the longer or more intense the exercise the more oxygen the body consumes afterward. Resulting in a higher metabolic rate and more calories burned throughout the day.
Just think for up to 38 hours* after a high intensity workout you can still lose body fat!!
Further studies into Exercise Afterburn have shown that the time after 20-30 minutes of High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) has a better fat burning result than say the time after going on an hour long 5 mile run (Purdue University 1992).

So for the best calorie burning Exercise Afterburn you need to keep your workouts intense and brief.

Mimic the intense training habits of elite athletes like MMA fighters and make your workouts short and effectively intense. Why not skip the trudge of the treadmill this winter, bypass the Powerplate, and scamper to the irresistible beat of the skipping rope?
* But don’t think that just by doing a bit of exercise you now start a diet of fast food and cakes. The amount of energy your body burns and for how long it burns does change per person. Genetic factors and the amount of lean body tissue (muscle) you have will determine this.Feel

Let’s get physical.

Which Cardio Vascular machines are the best?

So which one really is the best?

To find out we first have to know what cardiovascular fitness means.
Wikipedia defines Cardiovascular fitness as,
‘the ability of the heart and lungs to supply oxygen-rich blood to the working muscle tissues and the ability of the muscles to use oxygen to produce energy for movement.’(National Physical Activity guidelines).

The simple explanation is that the harder your blood has to travel around your body the harder the CV exercise.

Therefore low impact exercises on the Cross-trainer, Recumbent bike and the Adaptive motion trainers (AMT’s) are easier due to the minimal compressive forces on your bones and joints.

The Treadmil, Versa climber, and steppers are high impact equipment with a more compressive force which make your blood work much harder.

To be brutally honest it really is up to you to decide.
Just remember this one fact –
That using Cardio Vascular equipment regardless of the impact on the body is better than not using any at all!

This is true whatever your fitness goal.

Remember you’re not alone. If you require any help on the best piece of Cardio Vascular equipment to use do not hesitate to ask myself or a fitness instructor. Here’s wishing you a Happy Cardio Vascular workout!

Weights vs fat

Benefits of building lean muscle tissue to metabolise fat.

Often the idea of including weight training as part of your workout regime sets off images of bulky men, grunting and dropping weights. It also conjures up images of female bodybuilders who are infamously controversial.

What if we told you the true benefits of incorporating resistance/weight training to your gym routine? What if we told you that it’s highly unlikely that you’ll get bulky, but will instead burn more fat in the long run than any cardio machine is able to do.

Let me explain. Muscle is a lean and active tissue. One of its uses is to convert food into energy as well as produce heat and water. When resistance training is practiced regularly, the muscles become more efficient and faster at doing this and they also begin to remove fat from within the body’s fat cells. By increasing the amount of active muscle in the body, the more efficient the muscles become, working at a quicker rate.

This is often referred to as a fast metabolism.

This allows calories to burn throughout the entire day, even whilst asleep. Once the active muscle has been developed the body requires lots of calories just to maintain it. Therefore the existence and continual development of active muscle uses lots of energy/calories, burning a greater amount of fat. How wonderful!!!

Take the HIIT

HIIT training, what is it?

As a fitness professional I can’t tell you how many times I have heard ‘I don’t have the time to train,’ or ‘I am just too busy right now.’ This is usually a common justification for why some people can’t lose the extra pounds they have gained recently. Then when I explain that just 20 mins of exercise 3 to 5 times a week is enough, I generally get looks of disbelieve or even distain, but this is what High Intensity Interval Training or HIIT is!

A HIIT session often consists of a warm up period of exercise, followed by three to ten repetitions of high intensity exercise, separated by medium intensity exercise for recovery, and ending with a period of cool down exercise. The high intensity exercise should be done at near maximum intensity. The medium exercise should be about 50% intensity. The number of repetitions and length of each depends on the exercise, but may be as little as three repetitions with just 20 seconds of intense exercise.

There are various forms of HIIT training such as Spinning or Tabata training which are very popular at the moment, and famous athletes such as 70’s/80’s 800m and 1500m runner, Sebastian Coe has used a adapted HIIT workout in his training regime. So give it a go and remember its quality not quantity which counts when exercising!