Wednesday, 20 January 2016

The Benefits Of Green Tea

Although green tea has been around for a very long time, it seems as though 'it's power' has only been talked about in the last few years (in general). It is arguably one of the best drinks you can consume, and here's why.

One healthy swap that I recommend to clients and others, is to ditch their coffee/tea for green tea. Green tea does actually contain caffeine, just less than what's in your espresso. Drinking cup after cup of coffee at work can actually become a habit rather than a need, and with the higher level of caffeine, it can become a little unhealthy after a while. Drinking green tea will still give you a dose of caffeine and it has been shown to help you focus and concentration, similarly to coffee - you just don't have to worry about getting the caffeine jitters!

I consistently see green tea being raved about within the fitness world, not just as a healthy drink, but a fat loss aid too. There have been studies showing that green tea raises the BMR (basil metabolic rate - metabolism), but there have also been a few studies that haven't seen any difference in BMR. I personally think that it just varies - it will raise BMR for some, and for others it won't. It's the same as supplements - some people will notice a benefit from creatine, and some won't notice anything. There are fitness guys and girls who use green tea as a pre-workout - it doesn't have the same kind of 'hit' that regular pre-workouts give you, but some people don't like that, or don't need it - that's where green tea is a good option.

Another benefit of green tea that I personally don't think is talked about that much, is it's ability to fight bacteria. Some studies have shown that drinking green tea whilst suffering from the common cold, can help to fight symptoms and even help to get rid of that cold. The molecules responsible are called 'catechins', and they have also been linked to the reduction in tooth decay and plaque formation.

Some people refer to green tea as a 'wonder drink', because of the above benefits and also that it can help your overall health. Green tea has been shown to help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease as well as some cancers. The antioxidants found in green tea have been shown to fight back against oxidative damage, which can lead to one of the above mentioned illnesses.

Green tea doesn't have a strong taste, so it's easy to consume, even if you're fussy with what you eat and drink. It's also relatively cheap, which is great considering the vast amount of coverage it has had over the last few years (usually products increase in price if they are considered 'great'). I highly recommend adding green tea to your daily routine. You can by it in regular tea form or in powder/capsules.

Lee Gregory Fitness

Friday, 8 January 2016

New Government Alcohol Guidelines

I'm sure a lot of you have seen this in the news, but the government have brought out new guidelines for alcohol consumption. I can see why they have done it, but to be honest, it's pointless. Here's why...

The government have rules for speed limits on the roads, a lot of the public ignore them. The government have given advice on sun exposure to reduce skin cancer risk, a lot of the public ignore it. The government have guidelines on sugar consumption, as well as fat and salt, a lot of the public ignore it. So what will make the public think "oh! I guess I will stick to their guidelines for alcohol consumption" - the truth is, nothing will change (or, very little).

Most people know that alcohol isn't good for you, but they still drink it. I have read some comments from members of the public, such as "I thought red wine was good for you, but now I'm being told it's bad?". That shows how uneducated some people are about alcohol and diet in general, but that's a small percentage of the population - and a little worrying. So people know that it's bad, but they still drink it. It's the same with cigarettes, sun beds, junk food and so on.

To some, drinking is a 'hobby', because what comes with drinking alcohol? usually nights out with friends, dinner parties, sporting events, birthdays etc etc. To them it's part of the 'occasion', doing something they enjoy.

In reality, the alcohol consumption is not the governments responsibility, so why do they come out with these 'rules'? because they're the ones who have to pick up the bill when teenagers need their stomachs pumped, or other operations/treatments due to excess alcohol consumption. If the public had to pay for those treatments themselves, I would almost guarantee that alcohol consumption would reduce. People need to take responsibility for their own actions.

Even though I'm not a worldwide renowned nutritionist, I am confident to say that the government don't really know what to do, and whoever is in charge of making these types of decisions, is not fit to do so. The government also partnered with Weight Watchers recently - a shocking decision. Weight Watchers has an incredibly poor long term weight loss success percentage. Their system is designed to do one thing - make money. You keep paying them, things might be okay. Once you stop, the weight comes back and you're left on your own. Instead, the government should have partnered with gyms - free gym memberships will boost the populations activity levels. Some people cannot afford £30+ a month, but if it was free, they would go. Also, a lot of people don't like the government for a variety of reasons, so hearing them telling people to not drink more than 14 units of alcohol per week, will go in one ear and out of the other.

Many people clearly don't care about their own personal health. This is clear by the amount of alcohol that is consumed and also the obesity rate. Apart from personal health and image, there isn't really a downside to those things - you don't have to pay anymore money for being obese (plane tickets, medical treatment, clothing sizes and so on). You don't have to pay to get your stomach pumped or be put on an IV. The NHS was not set up to pump alcohol out of someones body, so why on earth is that available?? Make people pay for it! Then they will think twice about drinking so much alcohol that they have to be transported to A+E.

I can see what the government are trying to do (awareness mainly), but I cannot see it making any difference. People will do what they want to do - sunbeds, eat junk food, drink booze, drive to fast, drink and drive, take drugs... Someone from the government saying "You shouldn't be doing that" will not register with a lot of people I'm afraid.

Lee Gregory Fitness

(pic from google)

Wednesday, 6 January 2016

"How Do I Lose 3 stone As Quickly As Possible??"

When a new year comes around, I often get asked the same question in a variety of different ways, but they all pretty much mean - how can someone lose 'x' amount of weight as quickly as possible. I can understand why people are asking that, but I'm afraid you're asking the wrong question...

During Christmas and New Year celebrations, it is extremely common to put on some extra body fat - the alcohol, the chocolate, the savory foods etc etc. Just by cutting those foods and drinks out in the New Year, will drop a certain amount of fat on its own. However, if a 'body transformation' is what you're after, then other changes need to be made.

If you're aiming for the fastest possible 'weight loss', then it's simply going to come back. To drop weight fast (won't be just body fat - muscle and fluid too) then you'll have to go into an extreme diet - something that is not sustainable. So, once you get to the weight that you're happy with, you will go back to a 'normal' diet, and you'll start to see the fat come back.

To make REAL changes to your physique, then you need to make REAL changes in your lifestyle - your nutrition routine, your exercise routine, your sleep, your snacking habits, your alcohol consumption, your regular 'boozing sessions' etc etc. Unless you change the reasons why you have gained body fat (and not just a few pounds over xmas) then you'll never have the body that you want.

The real answer to the title of this post, is there is no answer - if you want to actually have a fit and healthy physique. I never recommend rapid 'weight loss', as it takes away more muscle tissue and fluid than fat - leaving you weak, hungry, a shapeless body and moody. Do it the right way - make small changes, real lifestyle changes, put in the hard work, and you'll be rewarded with the body that you're happy with.

Lee Gregory Fitness 

Monday, 4 January 2016

If You Say You'll Do It, Then DO IT!

Those of you who are reading this who follow me, will know from my previous posts and social media content, that I like to be organised - with my nutrition, supplements, training and work. In order to achieve a goal, you need to plan it.

When I began creating Lee Gregory Fitness, I done a heck of a lot of research as well as planning. I knew I wanted a website, social media, a blog, a logo, and the other 'bits n bobs' that come with a modern day business. I had to research and plan all of those things, and that made sure I was always on track with creating my brand. If you try and 'wing it', then you're more than likely going to fall off track pretty quickly, as you don't have a solid direction.

Whether it's about fitness, nutrition, your career, or even home projects, planning is key. Some may call it 'over thinking', but they are usually the ones who haven't ever accomplished what they set out to do - because they never had a plan.

I know guys who have a big white board at their home, which they use to put their ideas in front of them - spider diagrams, new names for their business, logo ideas, website layout options, creating new projects, the list goes on. Far too many people say what they want to do, but never follow through, and end up blaming everything and everyone else for their failure, when in fact they are to blame.

A lot of people say they don't make the effort with things like they're job, because they don't enjoy it. I know it's easier said than done, but find a new career if you're not happy with the one you have now. In this day in age there are so many different ways to getting so many different jobs. You don't have to get into the best university, you don't have to only know the right people, you don't have to have perfect GCSE's, there are many ways. If you had a job that you loved, you WOULD put the effort in, you WOULD go the extra mile and you WOULD reap the rewards. It's all about effort.

Could you fail? yes, but you can always get back up and try again. It's a million times better to fail when striving for success, than not failing in your comfort zone.

Lee Gregory Fitness