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weight loss

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


Fist bump's all round!

Fist bump's all round!

Our member of the month for March Jonny tells us his CrossFit journey below. Jonny is having to leave us for pastures new and we know his next CrossFit box is gaining an amazing team player. All the coaches and members wish you the best of luck with your new job and hope to see you soon.  Keep smashing them goals and keep being awesome.


Firstly I’d like to give a massive thanks (and fist pump obviously) to all the coaches for bestowing me with this honour!! 

Last September, when I first went down to Crossfit Ulysses for my “taster session” with Chris I didn’t really know what to expect.  I had heard varying views of CrossFit and I had my own ill conceived notion that you had to be incredibly fit in order to take part.  Chris did a great job of introducing me to Crossfit and after that first session it was abundantly clear that all the work outs could be scaled to anyone’s ability.  I’m not sure how everyone else found the taster session but I did plenty of sweating!!!

I got through my foundation classes and about a months’ worth of full classes before a new addition to the family arrived.  Training took a back seat for the next 6 weeks or so but by that stage I was already hooked!!  The coaches and members in the box are awesome and there is always plenty of craic and great atmosphere to help push you through the work outs.

I got back  into the swing of things in the new year (after plenty of indulgence/weight gain over the festive period) and decided to enter the Open to keep me focused.  I thought the way that this was organised by Ulysses was great and I wish I could have made some of the Saturday sessions as they looked awesome craic!!  The Open workouts definitely pushed me to the limit but also made me realise that CrossFit is something that I wanted to work and improve at.  I would like to think that I have made a substantial improvement since starting but at the same time I have a long way to go.  I find it’s the small wins that help keep you enthusiastic though – things that might seem insignificant but I was delighted when I held myself over the bar for 15 seconds or got my nose to the wall on a wall walk!!  I’ll keep working at the headstands Chris!!!

To sign off I would like to say that the all coaches and members have made CrossFit an awesome (life changing) experience for me and I only wish that I had given it a shot earlier!!  If I ever find myself in Teesside you’ll have to make room for me in one of your classes because I’m definitely dropping in!!!

Regards

Jonny Martin

Why not book a free intro and join an amazing tribe of awesome team players who will support you no matter what journey you're on.


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.

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


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!


Damian

CrossFit Level 1 / BTN Academy Nutritionist