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Chloe was our chosen winner for week four of our 28 day nutrition challenge. 

Chloe was our chosen winner for week four of our 28 day nutrition challenge. 

Chloe was our chosen winner for week four of our 28 day nutrition challenge. 

Chloe was consistent in hitting her macros and training.  

Her energy levels have improved she feels so much stronger and fitter.  

Chloe lost a vast amount of body fat and gained lots of muscle mass.  Chloe was chuffed to bits when we done her final bio-metrics as she could see how much her body has changed, not just physically but also internally too.   Her mindset going into the challenge was on top form and she did herself very proud. 

Chloe Team Ulysses are so proud of you and all you achieved over the challenge. Well done. 

Chloe has won herself some Natural nutrients protein. 

See Chloe's before and after pics, wow they are awesome.   

If you'd like Ulysses Nutrition coaches to help you on your journey, then why not click the "book a free intro" link and see what you can achieve

Buffalo Chicken.

Buffalo Chicken.

This amazing recipe is one of many to help you in your healthy lifestyle. Check out our recipe page for more amazing ideas on how to feed you and the whole family, great wholesome foods.



  1. Place chopped onion and minced garlic at the bottom of the crockpot. Place chicken on top. Then cover with low sodium chicken stock.

  2. Cover chicken with Frank’s hot sauce (add Tabasco if you would like additional spice)

  3. Cook on low heat for 6 hours

  4. Once cooked, set aside 1/2 cup of broth and pour out the remaining.

  5. Return chicken and 1/2 cup of saved broth to crockpot and cook on high heat for an additional 30 minutes

  6. Enjoy

  7. Try it Sara's way and make Buffalo BBQ Chicken! All you need to do is replace the 12 ounces of hot sauce with 1/4 cup Stubs BBQ Sauce and 1/2 Cup Franks Red Hot Sauce!


Nutrition Facts

Buffalo Chicken (Crockpot)

Amount Per Serving

Calories 131Calories from Fat 18

% Daily Value*

Total Fat 2g3%

Saturated Fat 0.02g0%

Polyunsaturated Fat 0.03g

Monounsaturated Fat 0.02g

Cholesterol 64mg21%

Sodium 1655mg69%

Potassium 70mg2%

Total Carbohydrates 3g1%

Dietary Fiber 0.4g2%

Sugars 0.1g

Protein 27g54%

Vitamin A17%

Vitamin C13%



* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Sean has taken this challenge in his stride and even started cooking

Sean has taken this challenge in his stride and even started cooking

Sean is our winner of week three for the 28 day nutrition challenge.

Sean has taken this challenge in his stride and even started cooking. Sean has given up his beloved fizzy drinks and even prepped energy ball snacks to give him that extra protein boost.

Sean wins himself some Dr Gus Bone shake to help him beyond the 28 day challenge and into the future. Sean is a bit of a joker and made us all laugh with a comment for international fried chicken day, but he’s proud to say he didn’t give into temptation and his will power was bigger then he previously thought.

Sean didn’t really need to lose weight, he wanted to lose body fat and build up muscle and I think it’s safe to say he’s been smashing them goals.

Well done Sean, Team Ulysses are very proud of you and all you’ve achieved in educating yourself in your new found healthy lifestyle.

Smashing out goals daily.   💪👊

Smashing out goals daily. 💪👊

All our 28 day nutrition challenge members have smashed it this week.  

Smashing out goals daily.   💪👊

However, Gemma has been picked for the first week's prize for her active involvement within the group. Posting messages and pictures of her food.  Sharing her highs and lows with the nutrition coaches and other members and she's also finally started to see results after years of plateau.

Gemma's goal has been to loose a fat %, and gain strength and muscle.  

Her end goal is in sight and she's super excited to see her results at the end of the 28 day challenge and beyond.    

Her smile is getting bigger along with her muscle mass and she oozes confidence. 

Gemma you've done amazing, keep up the great work and keep that end goal in perfect vision.  Ben was proud to hand over Gemma’s prizes. A bag of Natural Nutrients Chocolate Protein (to help Gemma’s sweet tooth} and of course the all important shaker to go along with it.

Thank you to Natural Nutrients and Dr Gus, for kindly sponsoring our 28 day Challenge.

Team Ulysses are proud of Gemma, all our members for the 28 nutrition challenge and all our CrossFit members too.  

Team Ulysses

Keeping people healthy, happy and confident since 2016. 

Why not book a free into and see how Team Ulysses could help you achieve your goals.   

Holiday season is nearly here.✈️🚢😎🌞  

Holiday season is nearly here.✈️🚢😎🌞  

Holiday season is nearly here.✈️🚢😎🌞  

Ladies……..Do you want to get into that itsy bitsy teeny weeny yellow polka dot bikini 👙? 

Gents…….. Do you want rid of that beer belly and not have a dad bod 🕺 on the beach this year?

Then look no further. 

Why not try Ulysses nutrition and kick start your journey to success and be the best you can be on the beach, in the bar.   


If you're serious about your goals and want more information then drop Team Ulysses a message as we're ready to help you get started.


Proven to give you confidence to get those shorts out at home too!

How can our Personal Training and Nutrition help you?

How can our Personal Training and Nutrition help you?

How can our Personal Training and Nutrition help you?

Whether you want just nutrition or nutrition and training.  All our coaches are here to help. 

. A nutrition plan made specifically for you. Meal plans, recipes, help and advice thoroughly and throughout.

.Bi-weekly check ins for accountability.

.Logging and tracking your goals.

. To start 1:1 PT LESSONS to help you get into the swing of things.

. Workouts that will help with mobility and flexibility.

. Every workout is constantly varied so no two workouts are alike.

. Cardio to help rid unwanted fat.

. Strength designed to build muscle and correct posture.

. Access to our online groups. For motivation, help and support.

Ulysses coaches are there to help you every step of the way.

What have you got lo lose?

Why not book a free intro and see how they can help you achieve your goals.

We have all been there.  I’ve been there multiple times.  Making every effort and focusing on your nutrition and fitness goals, but then life gets in the way.

We have all been there. I’ve been there multiple times. Making every effort and focusing on your nutrition and fitness goals, but then life gets in the way.

We have all been there. I’ve been there multiple times. Making every effort and focusing on your nutrition and fitness goals, but then life gets in the way.   You get busy or have a drama or trauma and before you know it you’re right back at square on, or you think you are. Maybe you’ve just put on a little bit of weight of lost some muscles.  But you feel like all your successful efforts where for nothing or have been lost and you’ll never get back to it. You end up eating takeaways and not going to the gym. Feeling you’ll never be able to get back on track again.  


How do you get back to it? How do you snap out of it? How can you start again?  


For most people it’s a shock of looking in the mirror without your blinkers on or seeing a photo of yourself on social media, maybe needing new clothes and realizing you’ve been squeezing in those jeans for far too long. For me it was a cold hard shock of looking down at myself in the bath one day.   I realized that my stomach which was getting to looking flatter everyday with all my hard efforts of training, was now bouncing on top of the water like a dead whale.


For me, life (or rather death) hit me hard. I’m not proud to say it but i just lost love for everything.  My Mam’s death had affected me more that i realized.. I ended up being a very negative person, i filled my mouth and stomach with crappy food, i didn’t care what i was doing or who else it was affecting either.  People around me gave me a wide berth as i was moody and negative and just didn’t care about anyone or anything, least of all myself. All my good habits i’d built up for myself since starting Ulysses had just vanished along with my happiness, zest for life and even my personality and what made me “me”..   


But i vowed to myself after my breakdown (in the said bath), that i needed to get back to me and pull myself out of this black hole i’d put myself in.  My Mam would of gave me a good hard slap and some cold advice and told me to pull myself together and to stop being so negative. My Mam, for the people who didn’t know her was the life and soul of any place she entered, she was an amazing woman with a heart of gold, she was full of life and loved having adventures and fun.  (pretty much like the person i was before she got ill and was taken from us)...


So, time to bounce back and be “me” again. 2019 was a year i’d turn my life around and start to focus on me.   No excuses, no putting things off anymore. This is why i’m so determined to get to my goals and i’d like to help you get to yours too. I care about your goals just as much as mine. Let me help you get in the right mindset, be happy and healthy.


You see life happens, life sometimes hits us hard or we have things we need to deal with that are out of our hands and we end up half arsing workouts or nutrition.     


But no matter how hard you train, no matter how many classes you attend, you can never out train a bad diet.  You need to focus on nutrition first and workouts second. Get the proper nutrients your body needs for all your aspects of life.   Busy lives need proper fuel. Busy people need to eat, but we need to eat proper healthy foods.


We all have struggles or hit a brick wall or plateau from time to time. Maybe it’s a few weeks, months or even years, but it’s how you bounce back that matters. It’s never too late to change it, it’s never too late to get back on track and be who you want to be.   It’s not the end of your story, it’s just another chapter in your life.

Find yourself someone who will help you along the way,  a friend who needs to lose weight, a training partner who will push you to do better every time.  A nutrition coach to keep you on track and for accountability. You just need to get started NOW, don’t think i need to lose a bit of weight before starting, as procrastination is the worse thing as you’ll never get back on track.  


Take small steps if you are too afraid to take the big leaps.   Cut out alcohol. Cut out fizzy drinks, taking a step towards your goals everyday.  Drink more water, swap your flat white for an Americano, swap your full fat milk for almond milk.   Eat more vegetables with your meals, eating these first to fill you up. If you’re eating out, then swap your chips for sweet potato fries.   It’s the little things that add up. It’s the little changes that make the most difference. Do it one step at a time. Learn to walk before you can run. Whatever you change, is a big step in the right direction of achieving your goals.


I changed my nutrition and started training more, I left my job and changed my life around completely.   You don't have to be as dramatic as i was. But change is good.


What are you going to do to get to where you want to be. What are your health and fitness goals.   Write down that goal and stick to it.


Ask for help if you’re struggling.   


Team Ulysses will help you every step of the way.  


Ben’s motto of helping people has been ingrained into the Ulysses staff and we’re all here to help, no matter what.

We want you to be healthy, happy and confident.

Why not book a free intro. We can sit down, discuss your goals and your needs. Talking through what you’ve been through and what you want to achieve is the biggest step towards a healthier, happier life. Don’t wait for the right time and don’t hesitate. Just do it.


Yvonne Osborne

Team Ulysses

Working and looking after her husband, three children, and copious amounts of chickens and other farm animals, you’ll wonder where she finds the time

Working and looking after her husband, three children, and copious amounts of chickens and other farm animals, you’ll wonder where she finds the time

Kirsty has already told us her story when she was picked for member of the month for February (you can find this in an earlier blog), but since then, she’s made some amazing progress.

Kirsty is an inspiration to us all. She is a busy working mam and also has a little farm going on at home too. (if anyone has had some of her eggs from her free range chickens, they’ll tell you they are the best.) Working and looking after her husband, three children, and copious amounts of chickens and other farm animals, you’ll wonder where she finds the time. BUT SHE DOES.

Kirsty always takes time to work on her self. He inner strength is outstanding, her quiet nature is only on the surface and her total gusto for any WOD or Open Gym session she attends is inspirational.

Kirsty also looked deep into her nutrition and has made some amazing changes to her food habits. She often posts her food on instagram and they never look boring or repetitive. Proving once you get your nutrition sorted, the rest is easy!

When Kirsty was picked for MOTM for February she was slowly working on getting that first pull up. She was saying only two weeks ago she’d love to have it by Christmas! But oh no wait. She’s hit it. In May! Kirsty your smile at the end of the video says it all really. We are so proud of you and everything you’ve already achieved in the short time you’ve been with us.

Working her weaknesses and being committed to her goals has fast tracked Kirsty so much. From all the awesome guidance off our amazing coaches and the support of her fellow class members has made Kirsy shine. She deserves to be MOTM again and again, for all her hard work and determination alone.

I asked Kirsty what her next goal was. He’s what she said. Word for word.

“I’m still thinking about it at the moment as there’s an awful lot I need to work on. Possibly being able to do a handstand, Kipping pull up. Flexibility on my shoulders. Toes to bar. And still working on them pull ups so I can do more at a time. Ha ha”

And her reply just goes to show how committed she is to her goals and her lifestyle of health and fitness. Kirsty, Team Ulysses want to say congratulations on hitting your first pull up, just in time to level up on The Level Method and for all the awesome things you do to make us all smile on a daily basis.

What goals do you have? Why not book a free intro and let see if you can smash them with our help!

Nutrition and fitness should never feel overwhelming or complicated.

Nutrition and fitness should never feel overwhelming or complicated.

Here at Ulysses we believe that nutrition and fitness should never feel overwhelming or complicated. Don’t be fooled by instafamous “celebrities” claiming they know the best tips. Don’t be sucked into the restrictive diets paths and latest fad diets of shakes, skinny tea or pills.…

It’s all about the following.

1. Eat real healthy food, not processed products.

2. Work Hard.

3. Stay consistent.


We can help you every step of the way and have you feeling the best version of you from day one.

Let us help you lose weight and feel great.

We want to help you focus on your goals and simplify things so you’ll never feel out of your depth .

We can help you keep on track and not fall off the healthy train. Tracking your foods and having accountability.

We approach your journey with a real healthy food plan, that is easy to stick to with delicious recipes, tricks and tips, from eating out, BBQ season and holiday foods.



One on one coaching to help get you started on the right fitness path, from the beginning.

Your level of fitness is measurable to help you train to your abilities.

Cardio to shift unwanted non-functional mass.

Strength designed to build muscles and help correct posture.

Constant varied workouts.


Don’t just take our word for it, read our members journeys so far and now we’re in partnership with Healthy Steps Nutrition. HSN has helped over 15000 clients and is backed by a registered dietitian.

And we’re bringing this to you with support from your Ulysses nutrition and CrossFit coaches.

Click on the book free intro and let us help you start your journey right.

Coming soon.   Ulysses Nutrition.

Coming soon. Ulysses Nutrition.

How can our Personal Training and Nutrition help you?

Whether you want just nutrition or nutrition and training, all our coaches are here to help you.

We’ll help you feel great and lose weight. Trust the process and see amazing results, within weeks of starting. Don’t just take our word for it, check out our website with awesome tips and tricks, recipes, members stories, blogs, nutrition and lots more. Book your free intro and let us help you be the best version of yourself.

  • A nutrition plan made specifically for you. Meal plans, recipes, help and advice thoroughly and throughout.

  • Bi-weekly check ins for accountability.

  • Logging and tracking your goals.

  • To start 1:1 PT LESSONS to help you get into the swing of things.

  • Workouts that will help with mobility and flexibility.

  • Every workout is constantly varied so no two workouts are alike.

  • Cardio to help rid unwanted fat.

  • Strength designed to build muscle and correct posture.

  • Access to our online groups, for motivation, help and support.

Why not book a free intro and lets see if we can help you lose weight and feel great!

How can our Personal Training and Nutrition help you?

How can our Personal Training and Nutrition help you?

How can our Personal Training and Nutrition help you?

  • A nutrition plan made specifically for you. Meal plans, recipes, help and advice thoroughly and throughout.

  • Bi-weekly check ins for accountability.

  • Logging and tracking your goals.

  • To start 1:1 PT LESSONS to help you get into the swing of things.

  • Workouts that will help with mobility and flexibility.

  • Every workout is constantly varied so no two workouts are alike.

  • Cardio to help rid unwanted fat.

  • Strength designed to build muscle and correct posture.

  • Access to our online groups. For motivation, help and support.

Why not book a free intro and lets see if we can help you lose weight and feel!

It's not all about the scales

It's not all about the scales

It’s not all about the scales...... but,

In the modern world we are told to ignore the scales, but should we really ditch the scales or can we learn to use them properly and effectively?

When individuals come to see us for a nutrition chat we take some of their bio-markers, weight, body fat, metabolic age as well as visceral fat. More often than not we tell individuals that our focus is on losing fat & reducing our metabolic age, that weight doesn’t matter & they shouldn't worry about the scales. However we also educate them on the benefits that using the scales can have & how to use them effectively.

One of the reasons we say put down the scales is because weight as a way of tracking can fluctuate depending on factors such as what we have eaten the day before, the type of foods, even the timing of the food & as nutritionists we want to instill our clients with confidence. We often ask individuals to see & feel the change rather than track it, it gives them the self belief & confidence when on the journey. It’s also a low stress way of tracking change which works perfectly for newbies.

So what can the scale offer, like anything in nutrition tracking is important. If you are 75kg one week & the next you are 74kg then progress has obviously been made. You could argue about diet the day before & blah blah blah but at the end of the day the client & coach see a win, wins are what we want. They build confidence & self belief and in the long run help create sustainability.

Below i am going to list a few ways the scales can be done & recorded to your benefit.

1. Weigh yourself only once a week - I personally weigh myself only on a Saturday morning. By doing it on a Saturday morning i am psychologically less likely to have a treat on the Friday night as well as i can celebrate that win on the Saturday night or even carry the momentum to avoid a Saturday night cheat.

2. Weigh yourself everyday - This is if you want to get a little nerdy about it. (but we don’t recommend this) Weigh yourself at the same time every morning, soon as you wake up, after your morning pee & totally naked. Record this every day & at the end of the week add them all together & divide by 7. This will give you the weekly average.

3. Use the scales to educate yourself - Play about with weighing yourself after a big meal the night before, or when you have eating a meal high in salt. Understand how many different factors can make your weight fluctuate & understand how weight isn’t everything.

At the end of the day the scales might not be perfect, but they are a unit we can track, understand & use to our benefit to show growth and progression.

Or we can just ditch them, like we say, feeling good & having self confidence is what is important for us all 🤘

Damian Buck

CrossFit Level 1 / BTN Academy Nutritionist

CrossFit Ulysses

Nutrition, travelling & holiday's.

Nutrition, travelling & holiday's.

Nutrition, travelling & holiday's.

Its a problem we all come across once in life, we find ourselves in the groove with our nutrition and training but unexpectedly get a work trip, a weekend away or even a full blown holiday. But what's the best way to tackle these?

For the purpose of this blog we are going to carry on as if you haven’t reached your goal yet, you still have a wee bit of fat to lose or that competition is just around the corner. However if your one of the lucky one who has dieted for this break away then go & enjoy yourself, there is nothing more satisfying than smashing your goals and reaping the rewards.

So what little tips and tricks can we follow when travelling to stay on our goals.

1. As mentioned above, tracking our macros. Even if you don't already tracking for the few days or week your away can help you stay accountable and on track.

2. Preparation, there's an old saying Proper Preparation Prevents Piss Poor Performance (Also known as the 6 P's to my rugby club) there is so much prep you can do before a trip. If your staying domestic you could prepare lunches and breakfasts, you can research or quickly look into healthy restaurants and menu options as well as prepare snacks and plenty of water to fill those gaps.

3. Next is education, this is the most powerful tool in any situation. Educate yourself on the right foods to be eating, educate yourself on your daily intake and how to balance your calories as well as this you yourself will become more confident & self aware.

4. Finally avoid process and fatty foods, it seems like the easiest one but is probably the hardest. No one wants to be the guy ordering salmon or swapping their chips for sweet potato while all their friends are doubling their burgers and adding cheese to everything. But at the end of the day these small changes will go a long way.

With all that being said at the end of the day you do you, if you end up having some burgers and fries or a couple takeaways then it doesn't really matter. As long as you know when you return you can flick that switch and return back to smashing it then go and enjoy yourself.

Damian Buck

Crossfit L1/BTN Academy Nutritionist

Skills pay the bills

Skills pay the bills

Skills pay the bills a wise coach once said……or maybe that was just me.

So you’ve been training for 6 months, 1 year, 5 years and still haven’t hit that 1 skill, that 1 skill that is holding you back, annoyingly? Or maybe if you’re human like me you still have many skills you would love to learn?

What have you tried?

For how long?

How many times?

What guidance if any have you sought?

It could be you’re 1st double under, push up, pull up, toes to bar, ring muscle up bar muscle up or maybe you are looking to improve the confidence in movements?

Skills are neurological- powered and learned with the brain, regardless of type! They need to taught and learned with consistency at a low heart rate, repeating of a motor pattern so you’re brain can control the muscle firing with electrical impulses!

We are electro-mechanical creations. The brain must think first what the body can physically do.

We’ve been through this process, frustration and pattern of attempt and fail ourselves and in doing so have crafted our new service for you.

Skills accelerator groups

Personal training groups capped at 4, lessons taught over 4 weeks of 1 hour with homework, progressions and a program to follow to accelerate you’re learning 5 to 10 times.

This group with its own coach, video feedback, pre and post testing.


The group of 4 reduces the cost from our usual price for 1:1 of £160 and saves you £60

Would you pay £100 for 4 1:1 sessions, group accountability and feedback, a training program and reduce your learning time by 5-10 times?

Hell yeah!

If this is you, please simply leave us your details on this form and we’ll do the rest.


CEO/Head Coach/L1 CrossFit trainer/ L3 Personal trainer/L2 Weightlifting Coach

Team Ulysses


Genetics loads the gun but it's your environment that will fire it.

Genetics loads the gun but it's your environment that will fire it.


Genetics loads the gun but it's your environment that will fire it.   

Disclaimer.... I am in no way a health professional or am I qualified in any aspect of fitness or nutrition, so please remember, this is just my opinion based on my environment and research I’ve been doing. 

Yes, you might of inherited your mamas "fat" gene.  But ultimately you make the choice if you'll let that gene be dominated by the foods and environment around you. Health professionals will tell you that disease runs in families, but diets also run in families..... 

Let's put it another way...  My mam made the most amazing bread, pasties and pies, which she learned from her mam, which she learned form her mam and I, in turn made the most amazing bread, pasties and pies.  These 'family recipes' have been passed from generation to generation to generation. The family meals that my Nana’s Nana used to make are also the meals that I used to make. That is, until I decided to end the cycle!

The foods people ate in the early 1900's were perfect for them with rations and no fridges etc.  They ate a good "hearty meal" of things like pie and veg most nights and even moped up the gravy with homemade bread. But that was the diet back then and it suited most people's lifestyles.  Back in the day, desk jobs were few and far between, most people worked hard and didn't snack on crisps and chocolate. Also, there wasn't a takeaway on every street and things like GMO's and packaged foods didn't exist back then either. In the early 1900's flours didn't get bleached and meats hadn't been pumped full of man made products and antibiotics. Nothing was processed and everything was made fresh daily.

Today's products are advertised as healthy, but if you look at the packaging, they are full of nasty little surprises, like genetically modified organisms, sugars, E numbers and preservatives, the list goes on. Most of today's food is man made. Most of our diets, no matter how healthy the packaging says it is, is not really good for us. Cancer, diabetes, obesity and a lot more are all on the rise and a lot of these things can be prevented by diet and lifestyle.

Some people can eat a million parmo's a week and it doesn't affect their weight, yet others only have to look at a McDonald's advert and they put on three pounds. See, genetics at its finest.

Although I don't recommend eating a million parmo's a week or McDonald's either. I do recommend you take a long hard look at what you are eating and if these foods are contributing to making these genes dominate how your body works, acts and looks then the only thing for you, is to do something about it. The longer you let these genes dominate, the harder you'll have to work to correct them. 

But most importantly, get off the couch and exercise. Those dominant "fat" genes can be tricked into submission by exercise and correct nutrition.  

So I'm not saying you can't enjoy good hearty foods that your nan used to make, however my suggestion is to not mix them with today's current foods. Don't eat that pie and then have a pizza later in the day. But If you are going to have pie then make it yourself. Make all your meals from scratch and always try to eat vegetables with every meal. Check the ingredients in the things you're using and if you have to have processed food then keep them to an absolute minimum. 

If you are like me and struggle with your weight, then the best thing to do is exercise.  I found a love for CrossFit and it's honestly been one amazing journey. CrossFit Ulysses has shown me how I can manipulate my body into doing exercise and find it fun. It's gave me a focus, it's gave me goals and it's helped me shift unwanted weight. CrossFit works for me. But if I'd of researched nutrition years ago I probably wouldn't have to work so hard to shift my unwanted, unhealthy weight and I'd have the body of a goddess and maybe a few ab's too!

I now know what foods work for me and what foods hinder my journey. I try not to eat processed things and if I'm caught off guard and have to, then I check out the ingredients and labels for the things that are unnecessarily added. Calorie count, write a food diary do what works for you, but don't just think it's in my genes and I can't do anything about it.

Yes I like pizza, yes I like chips and crisps and I definitely like chocolate. I'm never going to exclude these from my diet forever, but I do try to limit them as much as possible. Moderation and consistency are vital if you want to lose weight and/or maintain weight loss, get strong, fit and healthy.  

Think about your food, think about your exercise, think about your health.

Don't worry if you fall off the healthy train from time to time, we all do. Just remember to get back on it asap.

Much love Yvonne.  xx

Yvonne Osborne

Customer Service/Admin Manager

Team Ulysses

I don’t give out meal plans

I don’t give out meal plans

I don’t give out meal plans….

A phrase we are starting to hear more commonly within the fitness industry, but why? Many argue that a meal plan does not educate or create a sustainability for the client, and while this Is true is there more we can learn from a diet plan?

At face value a meal plan is a basic guideline for a client to follow to hit their daily goal, whether that be fat loss, muscle gain or just maintenance. It is a set breakfast, lunch and dinner option that if the client followed would guarantee results. From this you can probably clearly see why most people argue it doesn’t educate clients or provide sustainability.

But simply by opening communications with our clients we can use the meal plan to be one of our greatest tools for educating our clients. Not only this, as stated above by following a meal plan, we can pretty much guarantee the clients results. One thing we talk about in our gym is getting the small wins, your first double under, first pull up or in nutrition losing them first few pounds. The small wins are what allow us to achieve our bigger goals, stay focused and stay positive.

Firstly, we can look at the information we can put in to the diet plan and how that can help the client. By adding calories and macros to the plan we can give a client a very basic visual representation of how their diet should look, by communicating further with the client we can go in to carbs, fats and protein and how these are broken down for the individual. By listing the calories a client can see how much is in the food they eat, we find when clients start their journey they underestimate the calorie value of meals or food. By simply adding a little extra information to our plan and communicating with our client through a paragraph we can already see one benefit.

Secondly, using the meal plan to educate the client on tracking. As stated above in our meal plan we have included calories & macros, this information could easily be transferred over to MyFitnessPal for tracking purposes. If we were to ask a client to track their first week without a meal plan they would get confused with the app & most probably not track everything. If we were to combine a meal plan alongside tracking the client can get educated on tracking their food individually while having a reference point to calories & macros to match them up. If they do not match up this opens up some communication with the coach about where they may have gone wrong or allow them to figure it out themselves. Tracking is an important tool for any individual to use, from those who are obese to those who are looking to drop the last few % of body fat. Teaching a client to track calories & macros can allow them to go on to further sustainability with their diet and the long term goal of understanding tracking without using apps.

Thirdly, the understanding of recipes and nutritional value. When we say diet to a client they immediately think chicken, rice & salads but as we know this is not true. We can use a meal plan to get our client in to the kitchen, cooking & thinking about recipes differently. We can give them foods that they may not think of being diet friendly but that can be changed and applied to do so. We can show them how they can incorporate cheat foods or meals in to their diet, this coupled with understand of tracking can lead to a flexible lifestyle approach. Not only this by prescribing meals you can ensure that clients are getting enough fruit & veg, can make sure they are hitting their micro goals without boring them with the science.

So, to conclude, are diet plans that bad? Sure if we just give someone a plan that has a meal name, no information and leave them it could provide zero education. However by just adding a little information to our meal plans, by opening communications with our clients and giving them solid information a meal plan can be one of the best beginner learning tools.


Crossfit L1/BTN Academy Nutritionist

More to nutrition than just weight loss.

More to nutrition than just weight loss.

It’s not all weight loss….

When we think about nutrition, we tend to default to weight loss, and while this is true there are many other aspects of nutrition we can look at.

The first we can look at is athletic performance, working within the gym this is something that people tend to take for granted. The principle of fueling the body correctly for their activity level and overall goals, what we tend to find is those who are looking to improve performance often overlook the idea of correct nutrition. For most people looking to improve their main focus will be to increase training volume, but not having the correct calories to support this can damper performance. As we look in to athletic performance we can dive in to all sorts of nutritional science, from the very basic of ensuring we are getting enough protein, to the more complex such as sleep and sleep quality. The possibilities of how nutrition can support all of these are endless.

So, let’s say you are looking to increase performance, your goal is to increase strength as well as aerobic capacity, where do we start? The first and most basic point should be our calorie intake, ensuring we are getting enough calories to either sit at maintenance, support muscle growth with a slight increase of calories or help with the reduction of body fat with a small deficit. After this our next area to look at is protein intake, for those who are looking to increase performance should be aiming for 1.8 – 2.0 grams of protein per kg of bodyweight (For instance an 80kg male would look to consume 144 – 160g) this is to support the growth and retention of muscle. Next would be the consumption of carbohydrates, carbohydrates are broken down in to glucose which is the bodies primary source. What we tend to find with a lot of our clients and athletes is that this number is massively underestimated, this comes from a pre-conceived idea that carbs are the enemy and make us fat. The last simple tip we can look at is meal timing, ensuring we are eating to fuel our sessions. Consuming a low fat, high carbohydrate snacks an hour or two before exercises can massively increase performance over that session. As well as this ensuring we are replacing our glycogen levels after a session, again a high carbohydrate snack within 30 minutes of exercise or even a sports drink can help aid with this recovery.

Secondly, improve lifestyle, now I understand this is quite a loose statement and could mean anything to anyone, but I am going to explain what I mean. For me improving lifestyle is a couple of factors, it is eating a healthy well-balanced diet that allows our body to function at it’s required level and obtain the right amount recovery. It is having a healthy relationship with food, knowing that we can have sweets and treats and that everything is in moderation, and finally it is understanding nutrition. Having a small level of education to support us making the right choices, living the right way & balancing life.

I could go further on in this post about the benefits of nutrition, but I think we will save them for another day, we can look into improving health & life markers, helping aid injury recover as well as supporting sleep and recovery. Nutrition is the building block for a lot of the success we have in life and we are going to further explore these each week!


CrossFit Level 1 / BTN Academy Nutritionist

I want to make a change

“I think it’s time I got my nutrition sorted”

These are the words as coach’s we hear on a weekly basis. But what does it mean to get your nutrition sorted? Is it a case of eating more protein and vegetables, is it a reduction in calories? What are your goals and how are you training at the moment?

Just saying “it’s time to get my nutrition sorted” is a brilliant thing, it shows the clients understanding to change and focus, however it’s an open-ended question that we are going to delve in to.

Firstly, let’s look at your goals, what is the purpose of this change? Are you wanting to improve performance in the gym, get lean for summer or get strong? All of these have different approaches from a nutrition stand point. As nutritionists we need to make clear that one size does not fit all, we need to make sure our clients not only understand the process but how the science works. For example, a client who has come to us and wants to get lean for summer could simply be put on a caloric deficit and asked to track food intake. On the other hand, if we had a client who wants to improve athletic performance, we could delve in to all sorts of sciences, nutrition timing, carb cycling, macro & micro intake as well as optimal body fat. Whatever your goals are, will strongly decide which direction you need to take and should be clearly defined when starting this journey as one goal may contrast another.

Secondly, we could then delve in to the clients training. Are you training once or twice a week or more? High intensity or low intensity or not training at all? Each of these will have different effects on the body and what the body needs. If we use the example of CrossFit training a lot of the workouts are performed at a high intensity with varied weights. So how would this effect the client looking to lose weight? To fuel this type of activity a client may need a higher carb intake than others, additionally there may be a focus on protein to ensure strength is kept. The opposite of this could be your regular gym bodybuilder, this individual will be doing low intensity cardio and resistance training, therefore this type of client would need a lower carb intake but a higher protein one to support their training.

Lastly, how is your current diet? Are you a weekend binger? Big on the snacks? Like the odd beer or two? We look at these because the simplest of changes can sometimes make the bigger differences. If  you’re a weekend binger try having one day off and you will instantly see the difference. Like a snack? Maybe plan your meals better and ensure you are getting enough protein to fill you.

So, this has probably raised more questions than answers for yourself and that’s a good thing. When we look at making a nutrition change, we need to really ask ourselves the why. Why are we making this change & do we understand the process we need to follow? Next time your going to make a change write down your why, then from there track the sacrifices your going to have to make.

Do I want to get lean for summer? If yes, am I willing to sacrifice my performance in the gym? Am I willing to not have my weekend beers and takeaway? Working out and writing down your why will help when you're identifying the sacrifices and help keep yourself focus.

That being said the best nutrition change can just be the smallest, eating more good quality protein, lots of vegetables and less processed food.


Want to know more?

Book a free, no obligation  no sweat intro and we’ll prescribe you a route to your goals!

Damian Buck- nutritionist/ L1 CrossFit trainer/ L1 Weightlifting coach

Team Ulysses

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