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Contents July 2016

“It’s about building muscle naturally, and trying not to get conned”– Max Bridger, co-founder of LDN Muscle

p55 ON THE COVER p129 Lean muscle fast Follow our kit-free workout to look amazing this summer

p110 Ditch flab for abs Burn fat and build a six-pack wherever you are with this travel-friendly routine

p112 T-shirt-filling arms Five simple training tweaks that will let you put on your own gun show

p90 Make the world’s greatest coffee You don’t need to be a qualified barista to drink excellent coffee at home. Use our guide for a better cup

p64 Change the game Forget what you think you know – fitness is being turned on its head in 2016 p55 LDN Muscle … and the other men tearing up the fitness rulebook with their innovative approaches to training and more 4 | July 2016

p43 Punch a pop star Busted’s Matt Willis loves a fight – and MF was only too happy to oblige p72 Get fit at work Customise your working day so it makes you fitter, happier and more productive

Updates p13 Get the stones An avocado contains even more goodness than you may have previously thought p15 Stay on the ball The secret to keeping yourself fit and healthy at any age p22 Wake up Want to try a new sport? Find inspiration in Turkey with Brian Grubb

Personal Best p48 Action cameras Record all your adventures in super-sharp HD – from as little as £100 p50 OCR gear Get ready to tackle mud, freezing water and tough obstacles with confidence

Features p55 Rule breakers Meet the innovators changing the fitness world – and find out how to do the same

Fuel p83 Better batter Waffle your way to muscle with these healthy meals hot off the press


p88 Crunch time Crisps, but not as we know them – MF tests the new breed of non-potato snacks p98 Chicken tonight? Just how unhealthy is the fried chicken from your local high street? Nutritionist Drew Price gets under the skin




p105 Wet work The Total Immersion swimcoaching method promises fast, effective results. MF’s Ben Ince tries it p115 The MF Manual Everything you need to know before you get into the saddle and start pedalling



p122 Step up Make the world your gym with the first in our new series of DIY workouts July 2016 | 5

Rules are made to be broken Before you get any further into this month’s magazine (or despair at the lawlessness of modern society), let’s get one thing straight. MF’s Rule Breakers issue is not some celebration of people who flout drug tests, cut you up in traffic or (worst of all) leave the top off the toothpaste until it forms a diamond-hard crust. Our rule breakers are innovators – men who refused to accept the status quo, who turned problems into challenges and overcame them, who, if the tried-andtested ways weren’t cutting it, stuck their necks out and did things better. Most importantly, these men just bloody did it. They stopped talking, moaning or procrastinating, got off their arses and made it happen – whether that was hosting a barbecue festival, becoming MMA’s best-paid athlete or reinventing themselves as a genuine superhero. There’s inspiration by the truckload in this issue – and by trucks, we mean one of those huge, spike-covered war rigs from Mad Max smashing its way through all barriers in its path. We aim to crush any nagging negative thinking and inspire you to achieve your dreams. That, and how to add a neat twist to your bench press.

Joe Barnes, Editor @MF_Barnes 6 | July 2016

LDN Muscle’s Max Bridger: find out how he’s rewriting the training rules (p62)





Issue 193

July 2016

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The staff and readers of Men’s Fitness are always in the thick of the action

MEN’S FITNESS Dennis Publishing Ltd, 30 Cleveland Street, London W1T 4JD EDITORIAL Joe Barnes 020 7907 6519 Joel Snape 020 7907 6816 William Jack 020 7907 6522 Ben Ince 020 7907 6528 Chris Miller 020 7907 6520 Sam Rider 020 7907 6523 Matt Huckle 020 7907 6498 Alex Sowa 020 7907 6518 Jamie Inglis, Camille Neilsen (art), Ceri Thomas (subbing), Joe Rowland (intern) Staff email Work experience enquiries

Editor Associate Editor Art Director Deputy Editor Managing Editor Fitness Editor Features Writer Designer Thanks this issue

Joel, associate editor #pistolshotgun

I was on the beach in Cartagena in Colombia on my birthday, so almost inevitably I celebrated with the pistol shotgun – a one-legged squat where you down a beer at the bottom of the move. HIGHLY recommended.

Matt, features writer #bustup

Busted pop phenomenon and TV star Matt Willis wasn’t all talk when he said he liked boxing – true to his word, he happily sparred for a couple of rounds with me. Find out if we went the full distance on p43.

DIGITAL Website Editor Jon Shannon ( MANAGEMENT Group Publishing Director Associate Publisher Editorial Director Group Managing Director Advertising Director Account Director Agency Account Director Agency Account Manager

James Burnay Nicola Bates Pete Muir Ian Westwood ADVERTISING Rick Asiyani 020 7907 6713 Stephen Cooke 020 7907 6558 Lisa Jay 020 7907 6765 Carly Activille 020 7907 6702 Branton Palin 020 7907 6579

Senior Sales Executive Creative Solutions Project Manager Avril Donnelly 020 7907 6618 Creative Solutions Project Co-ordinator Alice Ordish 020 7907 6248 Northern Representative Steph Binns 01423 569553 Fax 01423 709319 Managing Director Julian Lloyd-Evans

MARKETING PR and Communications Director Jerina Hardy 020 7907 6607 Marketing Co-ordinator Georgia Walters 020 7907 6424 PRODUCTION Production Manager Daniel Stark 020 7907 6053

Ben, deputy editor #differentstrokes

I’ve always been pretty terrible at front crawl. Could Total Immersion – a swim-training methodology based on balance and stroke efficiency rather than power – finally solve my pool-related problems? Turn to p105 to see if I can learn to work with the water rather than fight against it.

Newstrade Director Newstrade Manager Lifestyle Direct Marketing Manager Syndication Sales Manager Senior Licensing Manager

Sam, fitness editor #benchwarmer

While shooting our new DIY workout series in London’s Docklands with fitness pioneer Andrew Tracey, I grabbed the opportunity to get a few bench jumps in. Tracey, creator of The Nomad Way, uses his environment to train anywhere he can – and you can too with his help (see p122).


For our interactive issue search iTunes for “Men’s Fitness UK magazine” MensFitnessMagazine

8 | July 2016

SUBSCRIPTIONS/NEWSTRADE David Barker 020 7907 6489 James Mangan 020 7396 8042 Sam Pashley 020 7907 6541 Anj Dosaj-Halai 020 7907 6132 Carlotta Serantoni 020 7907 6550 SENIOR MANAGEMENT

Chief Operating Officer/ Chief Financial Officer Group Finance Director Chief Executive Officer Company Founder

Brett Reynolds Ian Leggett James Tye Felix Dennis

Men’s Fitness is available for syndication. Please contact Nicole Adams on or +44 (0) 20 7907 6134 for details. Did you know? You can reserve a copy of Men’s Fitness free at any newsagent in the UK. Ask your newsagent for details. Origination and retouching by Mullis Morgan. Printed by Polestar Bicester. Distributed by Seymour Distribution, 2 East Poultry Avenue, London EC1A 9PT. Tel 020 7429 4000. © Copyright 2016 Dennis Publishing Limited. All rights reserved. Men’s Fitness is a trademark of Felix Dennis and may not be used or reproduced in the UK or Republic of Ireland without permission. Men’s Fitness is published in the UK and Republic of Ireland by Dennis Publishing Ltd and is sold subject to the following terms: namely that it shall not without the written consent of the Publishers first given be lent, resold, hired out or otherwise disposed of by way of Trade at more than the recommended selling price shown on the cover and that it shall not be lent, resold or hired out in a mutilated condition or in any unauthorised cover by way of Trade or affixed to or as part of any publication or advertising, literary or pictorial matter whatsoever.


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. Whether you’re Introducing the newsmart fitnesswatch, FitbitBlaze™ working out or going out, it will ignite your fitness routine. With features like guided workouts, continuous heart rate, call and text alerts, and interchangeable bands, finding your fit has never looked better.







©2016 Fitbit, Inc. All rights reserved. Fitbit and Fitbit Blaze are trademarks of Fitbit, Inc. in the United States and other countries.


Got a question? MensFitnessMagazine



OK, I think I’ve finally done too many pull-ups: my elbows hurt all the time. What’s the fix? Adam, Penzance Firstly, if you’re genuinely concerned, see a doctor or physio. Secondly, learn to juggle. No, really. “Juggling is a great way to mobilise – or ‘floss’ – the median nerve,” says Dr Brian Abelson of recovery specialists Kinetic Health. “Start with two balls in one hand, then switch to three balls.” Too much? Bouncing a ball off the wall and catching it in the same hand has similar benefits. And when you’re ready to return to pull-ups, get some gymnastics rings. They’ll let your arms move more freely, keeping them out of the unnatural plane of motion that caused the problem. I’m struggling to eat clean. I know what I should be eating, but I can’t stick to it. Any suggestions? Rick, Coventry Clean up your house. In a recent study, researchers split 100 participants into two groups. One group was taken to a clean kitchen and told to write about being in control. The others were left in a dirty kitchen and told to write about being out of control. When both groups were offered biscuits, the “chaotic” group ate more than twice as many as the “clean” ones. So, clean the spaces you eat in – office, home, kitchen or car – and you’ll find it easier to make sensible choices.


I want a gadget that can analyse more than just my steps. Help me out, science. John, London You need the new generation of wearables. Shirts and shorts are getting the internal-sensor treatment, but right now your best bet is shoes. New footwear can transmit real-time feedback on footstrike, pace, distance, cadence and ground contact time to your phone or smartwatch. The Altra IQ Smart Shoe packs all that into a minimalist, zero-drop shoe. Find it at 10 | July 2016


My girlfriend’s started meditating, and she seems a lot happier. Is it just the placebo effect, or is there actually something to it? Chris, York Are you sitting down? Then why not fit in some eyes-shut deep breathing? It might improve your next cardio session. When researchers from Rutgers University in the US asked subjects to spend 30 minutes meditating before an exercise session, they reported fewer depressive symptoms, were less anxious, and more focused. And there’s no need to go for the full robes-and-chanting bit: for the volunteers, being asked to focus on their own breath was enough.



You’ll get 5 issues for £5 – plus a Bulldog Skincare set For more details see p32 or call 0844 844 0081


In your June issue, Emil Hodzovic says he trains twice a day. Is it worth my while to do that or is it just a waste of time? Stephen, Manchester Short answer: it’s fine if you do it properly. Frequency is key to muscle growth, so train twice a day if you want – as long as you follow expert advice. “Leave at least six hours between workouts, and make sure each session’s done in under 45 minutes,” advises Hodzovic. “And, of course, make sure you’re sleeping and eating enough to adequately recover.”

Photography iStock


Knock out a few ohhmmms ahead of your next cardio session for better results

07 16


What matters now The University of Antioquia in Colombia found that avocado stones also have strong cancer-fighting properties

Don’t throw stones Use every part of the avocado for the full health effect

Words Ben Ince Photography Joseph Sinclair


vocados may be the trendiest “superfood” around – they were actually out-selling oranges in UK supermarkets at the end of 2015 – but according to a new study, you could actually be throwing the most nutritious part of it away. Researchers from Pennsylvania State University recently found that the avocado stone contains high levels of phenolic antioxidant compounds that can help to improve cholesterol levels, boost your immunity and even reduce inflammation and high blood pressure. Unfortunately it’s also got a fairly bitter taste

– and crunching it isn’t likely to agree with your pearly whites. To make it more palatable, you need to dry it in the oven – ideally for two hours on a low heat – then remove the outer skin, press down on it with the flat edge of a knife (the seed should then split in two) and blend it in a food processor. This creates a powder, which you can store in the fridge in an airtight container and add to smoothies for an extra nutrient boost. For optimum results, mix it with strong-flavoured ingredients such as kale, blueberries or spinach. July 2016 | 13

The New Abarth 595 Yamaha Factory Racing starts from £17,420 OTR. Official fuel consumption figures for Abarth 595 Yamaha Factory Racing: mpg (l/100km): Combined 47.1 (6.0), Urban 35.8 (7.9), Extra urban 57.6 (4.9), CO2 Emissions: 139 g/km. Fuel consumption and CO2 figures are obtained for comparative purposes in accordance with EC directives/regulations and may not be representative of real-life driving conditions. Model shown is the Abarth 595 Yamaha Factory Racing 1.4 T-Jet 160 HP at £17,890 OTR including Gara White paint at £300 and optional Side Stripe and Mirror covers at £170. Abarth UK is a trading style of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles UK Ltd.

Updates | Fitness Yo u m i g h t n o t b e a b l e to match Ryan Giggs for skill, but copying his refusal to give up playing could protect your health

Could a lie-in make you ill?

Train for your brain Words Ben Ince, Chris Miller Photography Alamy, iStock


etting old isn’t so bad when you consider the alternative, as Maurice Chevalier once said. But then he also sang “Thank heaven for little girls”, so we’re happy to ignore his belief that the only two options are decrepitude and death. In fact, you can maintain the brain power and disease-resistance of a younger man – and the secret? No surprise: it’s exercise. Older people who did moderate to intense activity – cardio or bodyweight training – slowed age-related decline in thinking skills by ten years compared with those who did little exercise,

Why dieting doesn’t work

in a 12-year study carried out by the University of Miami. Neurologist Clinton Wright, who led the research, points out that using exercise to combat ageing also helps society, as it’s cheaper and more accessible than medication. And it’s good news if you enjoy a kickabout: playing on long after most people give it up is the perfect way to stay lean and fit while beating age-related illnesses, according to a new Danish study that monitored 63- to 75-year-old soccer players. “After four months’ training, cardiovascular fitness scores improved by 15%, interval work capacity increased by 43% and functional capacity by 30%,” said Thomas Rostgaard Andersen of Copenhagen University. “The improvements contribute significantly to reducing the risk of developing heart disease and diabetes.”

The Bottom Line Don’t hang up your boots – play on and you could live a longer, healthier life.

If you bound out of bed full of energy at dawn on a Saturday, it’s safe to say you’re in the minority – but the rest of us who sleep in at weekends could be at risk of diabetes and heart disease, according to a study in the Journal Of Clinical Endocrinology And Metabolism. This linked “social jetlag” – or lie-ins – to weight gain, rising levels of triglycerides and reduced HDL or “good” cholesterol, which are all danger signs. However, this doesn’t mean you have to set your alarm every single day. Those who have irregular sleep patterns often have irregular work hours, creating stress that can cause the same symptoms. Besides, as sleep expert Jim Horne points out, worrying about sleep only makes you more stressed and mucks up your slumber even more. So stick to roughly similar hours in bed if you can, but don’t beat yourself up over a few extra ZZZs.

Trying to eat less to get lean? It’s not likely to work, because your body is fighting against you. In a study at the University of Loughborough, participants who restricted their food intake to get into calorie deficit (more burned than consumed) saw a rise in the hunger-promoting hormone ghrelin and a fall in the hunger-suppressing peptide YY. This isn’t just complicated biological stuff – the subjects demonstrated these effects in the real world by eating a third more at a buffet than when they created the same calorie deficit by means of a 90-minute run. Yep, exercise is the answer again. So instead of counting calories, eat nutritious whole foods and train regularly and you shouldn’t have any worries about flab. July 2016 | 15






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Updates | Nutrition

On the juice

Can a 24-hour juice “cleanse” revamp your body? MF’s Ben Ince drank 3.5 litres of liquid in one day to find out, courtesy of Presscription 7.30am

Green Revive juice with cucumber,

celery, apple romaine, lemon, ginger and cayenne “It wakes you up, but I’d rather have it with a cocktail than for breakfast.” 9.30am

500ml Amber Boost juice with lemon, lime, red chilli and coconut blossom nectar “Tastes like watered-down sweet chilli sauce. Necking half a litre was a challenge.” 11.30am

30ml Antidote shot with orange,

turmeric, ginger, cayenne and lemon “A perfect mid-morning boost, and a lot tastier than my regular coffee.” 1.30pm

500ml Orange Tonic juice with carrot,

sweet potato, apple, lemon, flax oil, “The most appetising drink so far, with lots of sweetness from the potato. Missing solid food though.” 3.30pm

500ml Red Remedy juice with beetroot, cucumber, carrot, celery, ginger and lemon “Tastes like liquid salad, and far too watery. Toilet trip frequency is increasing.” 5.30pm

30ml Energise shot with pineapple, ginseng and gingko biloba “The pineapple flavour is pretty pleasant, but the consistency is a bit like baby food.” 7.30pm

Words Ben Ince, Chris Miller Photography Joseph Sinclair For more on Presscription visit

500ml Green Elixir juice with kale,

celery, spinach, cucumber, romaine and pear “Another watery salad, but with less flavour. Feeling very bloated now.” 9.30pm

500ml Mylk Make-Well juice with dates, almonds, sea salt and vanilla bean “Delicious, sweet and creamy on account of the dates and vanilla.”

The verdict My energy levels

stayed high, I was never hungry, and it undoubtedly crammed plenty of nutrients into a short timeframe. But the volume of liquid – and the constant peeing it led to – plus a severe lack of protein means I’d be unlikely to do it again.

The secret to better sleep Yes, it’s another reason to eat more meat


high-protein diet is prescribed by trainers and nutrition experts for both losing fat and building muscle, but new research has found that eating lots of protein-rich foods might have an added benefit: it could improve the quality of your sleep. In the study at Purdue University in the US, two sets of subjects were put on diets containing 1.5g and 0.8g of protein per kilo of bodyweight each day (from beef, pork, soy, legumes and milk) for three or four months. At the end, those on the higher-protein diet reported a marked

improvement in sleep what they ate,” says MF quality. “It’s important to nutrition expert Drew Price. know how diet and lifestyle And improved sleep may changes can help improve have been down to more sleep,” says researcher Jing than protein. “Dairy protein Zhou. “Compromised sleep is a source of tryptophan quality can lead to disease and whey concentrate and premature death.” contains peptides that are It’s worth noting, thought to improve sleep.” however, that the study Price doesn’t dismiss the was part-funded by the US study, though: “Increased National Pork Board and protein might help sleep National Dairy Council, simply because you’re less and the promotional body hungry or less anxious Beef Checkoff. So can about feeling hungry.” we trust it? “The study design was The Bottom Line If you have trouble pretty good but the sleeping, eat more protein. With intake wasn’t tightly so many benefits, it can’t hurt. controlled – we’re not exactly sure July 2016 | 17



Get paid for your passion

Updates | People

Gymnast turned Olympic snowboarder Billy Morgan answers life’s big questions

Morgan, 27, became the first person to land a 1800° jump in 2015

What’s the one thing you make time for every day? Eating properly. I love cooking.

Words Joe Rowland

Nature or nurture – did you inherit or build your body? I’m the same shape as my dad Eddie, “Mad Eddie” to his friends. I’ve taken the controlled madness from him, he’s just plain mad. My brother and I spent ten years as acrobats, but we developed that, it wasn’t given to us. Why have you succeeded where others have failed? Gymnastics has provided me with an aerial awareness that others don’t have. What motivates you when your willpower is waning? I think about all the kids who’d love to be in my position.

What’s the meaning of your life? Staying on my feet. I only came back from cruciate ligament surgery in December. What’s your perfect day? Snowboarding in ideal conditions, then table tennis, beers and a curry with friends. Routine or spontaneity? Both. I need a plan when I’m snowboarding to feel more comfortable, but at home I just see where the day takes me. What’s the best life advice you’ve ever received? My dad taught me that if you really want to do something, you can make it your career. I never intended to be a pro snowboarder, it just happened. Also, never stand in a jump

landing area – I’ve seen a girl shatter her leg after getting hit at 50mph. What’s the one thing most people don’t do that they should? Knee stability control work before they board or ski on holiday – it’s essential. Do slow single-leg squats on a Bosu ball and avoid injury. What did you learn from your greatest failure? Don’t land on your head because it hurts. Yoga pants or weighted vest? I wouldn’t be seen dead in yoga pants so I’d take

a weighted vest, I guess, to work on my chin-ups. What move do you do every workout without fail? Lunges. Clean eat or dirty bulk? Clean eat. I much prefer proper food to protein shakes, but only because I can cook.

How do you guarantee a good session? It’s a lot easier to laugh off a slam if HOW TO BOARD I’ve had a can of IN STYLE Red Bull. It gives 1 Lunge every me a boost.

workout 2 Do single-leg squats on a Bosu ball 3 Film every run with an action camera

How do you want to be remembered? As the gnarly guy who did loose stuff. July 2016 | 19

Updates | Training


Add a twist to chest day

Words Joel Snape Photography Danny Bird Model Deke Walker

Want a better chest? It’s time to rock the bells

Your chest is made up of the clavicular head and the sternocostal one. You want to train both. Here’s how

Lie back on a bench set at 30° holding two dumbbells in a standard grip by your shoulders. Press them up, rotating them 180° as you do, until your arms are straight. Hold in the “reverse” position at the top of the move for two seconds, then lower, twisting the weights back to the start position.

Sets 3 Reps 8

What do you bench, bro? Sorry, trick question: if you’d rather score a big chest than bragging rights, it barely matters. The trouble with the traditional bench press is that, unless you’re careful, your triceps and shoulders can take over. Bad news if you want to fill a T-shirt, and worse if you’re juggling any sort of shoulder injury. The fix? Add a twist. According to a study in the Journal Of Strength And Conditioning Research, when lifters used a reverse grip during an isometric hold of the flat bench press, it resulted in increased activity for the upper portion of the pectoralis major compared with a normal grip. So try the twisting chest press for unprecedented muscle growth.

Double header

How to do it

Hit the incline

Doing your bench press at a slight incline – 30° or less – hits your upper chest (clavicular) more than flat benching. Use a narrow grip – hands just outside shoulderwidth gives the best results.

Grab a band

Research shows that pressups can match benching for muscle gains if muscular activation is high enough. To add resistance, wrap a band around your back and loop the ends under your hands.

All of the above

For best results, do all three of these moves in the same workout, either as single moves (with serious resistance) or as a threeway tri-set. Try five incline bench presses, ten twisting presses and 15 banded press-ups, four times. July 2016 | 21

These huge marble columns originally formed a building around the pool – until a seventhc e n t u r y e a r t h q u a ke toppled them

22 | July 2016

Updates | Adventure

Get some edge

When is a wakeboard not a wakeboard?

Words Matt Huckle Photography Daniel Deak Bardos/Red Bull

There’s something unusual about this picture of Brian Grubb on a board – and it’s not just the unique location, Cleopatra’s Pond in Hierapolis, Turkey. Experienced wakeboarders will notice that Grubb isn’t wearing any bindings. That’s because he’s actually wakeskating. “Wakeskating is essentially skateboarding on the water. You even wear shoes,” says Matt Gleason of board company Liquid Force. The sport originated in the US in the late 1970s, when surfers rode behind boats to cover distance quicker. Soon boards started getting shorter, allowing for more control and agility. Wakeskating focuses on technical tricks rather than maximum time in the air like wakeboarding does. And rather than using big, expensive boats to create a wake to use as a ramp, wakeskating often uses jet skis or even high-speed winches as tows, so it’s perfect for shallow pools and small lakes. While tricks require a lot of practice, the basics are straightforward. “I’d argue it’s easier to get started with than wakeboarding,” says Gleason. “If you’ve ever surfed, skateboarded or snowboarded, you’ll pick it up quickly.”

GET STARTED The right board

Beginners should aim for a board with rounded edges and a foam top, which will be more forgiving to your movements. Try the Liquid Force Focus.

Footwear for grip

Wakeskating shoes are often designed with quick-drying foam but in truth you can use almost any shoes. Anything with wide flat soles will give you all the grip you need.

Where to try it

Most cable parks can accommodate wakeskating. Head to LDB Wakeschool in Surrey (, where you can get lessons geared to any ability level.

July 2016 | 22

PB | EXPERTS Updates | Success current Premier League season. Ranieri has ditched the “Tinkerman” moniker he earned at Chelsea, favouring consistency across his team – which has produced consistently good results. Life skills “Ranieri clearly has a very close relationship with his players and understands how they work. The art of effective management – in sport or in the office – is to understand and balance the needs of the individual and the team to ensure that you maximise the potential performances and achieve the team’s goals.”

Live life the Leicester City way and success will head your way

Make your own luck

Achieve the impossible With a little help from Leicester City

Words Joe Barnes Photography iStock


ven if you’re not a football fan, you can’t have missed the incredible, near-miraculous success of Leicester City this season. After just scraping Premier League survival last spring, this year they have stunned the footballing world by winning the championship/ coming a highly creditable second (delete as applicable, depending on when you’re reading this). And again, whether or not you follow football, there are valuable life lessons we can all learn from the Foxes’ improbable achievements. We asked sports psychologist Paul Russell (, who’s currently working with Premier League players, to help us work them out. 24 | July 2016

Keep a level head, not a big one

Footy skills No matter how hard Claudio Ranieri, Leicester’s avuncular manager, or his players were pressed on their chances of winning the title, they never buckled, sticking firmly to the “we take one match at a time” party line. Life skills “Staying in the present is a great strategy to help performance,” says Russell. “Looking too far into the future can lead you to focus on too many uncontrollables, which can distract from the task in hand.”

Let the larger picture take care of itself

Footy skills Leicester’s only target at the start of the season

was to avoid relegation. Even when they were top of the table at Christmas, the aim was Champions League qualification, and it wasn’t until European football was in the bag that they allowed themselves to dream of serious silverware. Life skills “How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time! By breaking your longer-term ‘outcome’ goal into more manageable and achievable shorter-term goals, you will remain confident and more motivated that you can be successful.”

Everyone needs a Wes

Footy skills Captain and defender Wes Morgan has (at the time of writing) played every single minute of the

Footy skills Manchester United enjoyed it in spades in their pomp, Real Madrid seem to manufacture it (probably in a villainous lair under the Bernabéu), and Leicester have whiffed of it all season – it’s the mark of all champions: ultra-jammy good luck. But you can’t rely on it – and as golfing great Gary Player famously said: “The harder I practise, the luckier I get.” Life skills “I don’t personally believe in luck as a performance strategy. It is usually used by losers who don’t want to look at the real reasons underlying their performance. Focus on creating an environment that rewards taking personal responsibility, creativity, dedication to personal and team excellence.”

Enjoy what you do every day

Footy skills It’s easy to smile when things are going your way, but the joyous mood emanating from the King Power stadium, from fans and players alike, all appears to start with one man whose bruschetta always lands tomato side up: their 64-yearold Italian manager. Life skills “A great way to enjoy your sport – and you can apply this to work too – is to keep it in perspective. Yes, it means a lot to all involved, but win, lose or draw, the sun will still rise the following morning. If you view every experience as an opportunity to learn and move closer to achieving your goals, your performances will improve.”

James Anderson


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Updates | Eat This

Out of its shell Question: what do courgette spaghetti, cucumber noodles and cauliflower rice have in common? Answer: they’re all excellent vegbased substitutes for starchy carbs – which can cause your body to store fat rather than burn it if eaten in excess. And now you can add a new smart swap to the list: lettuceleaf taco shells, which provide a bonus hit of bone-strengthening vitamin K. This recipe from dietician Matthew Kadey also features kimchi, a fermented vegetable that increases the fatburning effects of exercise, which makes this twist on a Mexican classic a perfect post-gym lunch.

Pork tacos with kimchi mango salsa Ingredients (serves 4)

500g pork tenderloin, sliced into 1cm rounds / Salt and pepper, to taste / 1tbsp rapeseed oil / 50g chopped kimchi / 2 handfuls of cherry tomatoes, halved / 1 orange

Avocados are filled with healthy fats that can improve cholesterol and help prevent fat storage

pepper, chopped / 1 mango, diced / 2 spring onions, thinly sliced / Handful of chopped coriander / 1 avocado / 250ml sour cream / 1tsp lime zest / 12 large lettuce leaves

To make

Season the pork with salt and pepper. Heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add the pork slices and heat until cooked through, about three minutes. Toss together the kimchi, tomatoes, pepper, mango, spring onions and coriander. In a blender or food processor, blend the avocado, sour cream and lime zest until the mixture is smooth. Divide the pork among the lettuce leaves and top with the kimchi salsa and avocado mix. July 2016 | 27

Words Ben Ince, Matthew Kadey ( Photography Jarren Vink Food styling Chris Lanier/Apostrophe

Replace the starchy carbs with lettuce to make a fatburning taco






Updates | Gear

Hunt down fat (and target muscle)

The Skulpt Chisel is about to make body fat scales look Neanderthal

Why would you need it? For physique athletes and high-level sportsmen, the answer’s obvious: it’ll let you identify asymmetries and weaknesses, and train accordingly. For the everyman, it’s more of a curiosity – but if you’ve got glaring deficiencies, it’ll spotlight them. So, do I need one? Need is a strong word, but it’s no more expensive than a highquality set of body fat scales and more portable. It provides more raw data, though not as much guidance on what to do with it as you might like.

Words Joel Snape Photography Danny Bird


cales? Tape? Callipers? Old news. The Skulpt Chisel handheld body scanner uses electrical impedance myography (EIM) to scan and measure your actual muscle quality – allowing you to train with precision hitherto unavailable to anyone but elite athletes and dedicated biohackers. Do you really need that level of precision? We tried it out.

What does it do? Basically, it sends tiny electrical impulses through your body to measure your body fat percentage and muscle quality across 24 muscle groups. Skulpt claims a 1-2% error margin – so not as good as the DEXA method, but more accurate than scales.

Does it work? Yes. Once you’ve done the scanning (hardest part: disrobing), you get a heat map of the muscles you’ve hit, ranked from “Needs Work” to “Athletic”. Anecdotally, it rated the MF team 1-2% higher than the office body fat scales.

What does “muscle quality” really mean? Skulpt defines this as the force a muscle produces relative to its size. So if you’ve got a high degree of intramuscular fat, you’ll be appropriately chastised by the app.

MF SAYSS Joel Snape, associate editor

Expect PTs to be brandishing Chisels before the year’s out. If you run your own training, there are worse investments. For those on a budget, though, the best body fat tracker is still a selfie.

Month July 2016 2015 | 29

A taste for adventure Living off the land can be tricky when you’re out in the wilderness – unless you’ve got a Weber Q1200


andering in the great outdoors is an excellent way to work up an appetite as vast as the open spaces you’re exploring. But with limited (and often unappetising) meal options, keeping yourself sufficiently fuelled can be a challenge. The solution? Invest in a Q1200 – the new lightweight portable gas grill from Weber – and follow the tips below, from Nick Weston of Hunter Gather Cook foraging and cookery school (

What are the best locations for wild food foraging in May and June in the UK? You can find wild plants pretty much anywhere – in towns, parks, the open countryside or even your own back garden. But I always tend to gravitate towards water courses such as streams, lakes and rivers, which are an excellent habitat for lots of wild foods. In spring and early summer you should keep an eye on hedgerows too, where there are all sorts of flowers, leaves and blossoms to be had. What are the most common foraged foods to look out for at this time of year? Sorrel is a shield-shaped glossy leaf that can be found on banks or in open fields. It has a sharp, citrusy tang because of its oxalic acid content, and is great used raw with fish and red meats. Dandelion leaves make an excellent addition to any kind of salad, especially the smaller leaves, which are less bitter. Ground ivy is perfect for adding flavour to meat – it contains notes of sage, rosemary, mint and thyme. The plant has tiny, purple, orchid–like flowers, but it’s the green, hoof-shaped leaves underneath that you’re looking for. Wild garlic seed heads are quite good pickled, and you can use the leaves (sparingly) to add a similar flavour to the bulb. Elderflower works well in cordials and syrups or infused directly into drinks. Wild mint is also readily available – the four main crossbreeds are water, spear, pepper and apple – especially if you look in damp areas.

Finally, wild horseradish roots are the perfect way to add spice. They’re often found on roadsides, with large leaves that look similar to dock leaves. What items are essential for a culinary survival kit that will let you create a gourmet foraged meal? Flavour-wise I suggest bringing small servings of olive oil and cider vinegar, along with salt, pepper, stock cubes, cumin, coriander seeds, sesame seeds, chilli flakes, herbes de Provence and curry powder – you can buy miniature travel bottles from Boots to store stuff in. In terms of gear, the Weber Q1200 is light enough to carry and takes just minutes to heat up – and you’ll need tongs, gloves, a sharp knife, a chopping board, a small steel mixing bowl and a plate with cutlery.

Are there any foraging rules I need to be aware of ? The most important thing is to never eat anything unless you are 100% sure what it is. If in doubt, leave it out! Some common wild plants in the UK are seriously poisonous, such as hemlock water dropwort which can be lethal if ingested, and you should be extremely careful with mushrooms too. With regards to the law, in line with the Wildlife & Countryside Act of 1981 it is illegal to uproot any wild plant without the landowner’s permission, but you are allowed to take fruit, foliage and fungi. It’s also worth considering the sustainability aspect of each plant – only take what you need and never strip a plant of all its leaves, flowers or berries. A few off here and there is fine, though.


Win a wild weekend!

To celebrate the launch of the Q1200 – a small but mighty gas grill that goes wherever you go and comes in five sizzling hot shades – Weber has joined forces with Nick Weston and Hunter Gather Cook to offer one lucky winner and their family an exclusive Weber Wild Food Weekend.

The winners will be taught to live off the land and find seasonal wild edibles, followed by an outdoor feast prepared by Weber’s expert chef. So if you want to learn how to fire up your barbecue in the great outdoors as well as your back garden, enter the Weber Wild Food Weekend competition. For full details see below.

ON-THE-GO OMELETTE WITH CHEESE, HERBS AND BACON Packs a powerful protein punch for

breakfast, lunch or a quick snack

Serves Two Difficulty level Easy Cooking time 10 minutes Barbecue temperature 225°C Barbecue method Direct Equipment Frying pan, kitchen paper, fork to whisk Ingredients • 10 medium/large eggs • Herbs (bring dried parsley, oregano, thyme, basil and tarragon or use the natural larder and forage sorrel, wild garlic and dandelion) • Salt and pepper (pre-grind into a small sealable plastic container) • 8 slices of bacon (wrap in foil and pack) • 2-3tbsp oil (store in a small plastic bottle) • 50g cheese

To enter just go to Closing date Friday 10th June 2016

The prize includes… • A Weber Q1200 (£249.99 RRP) in your choice of five colours • One night’s stay for a family of four (two adults and two children) at a chosen UK campsite – all camping essentials will be provided • Two-hour foraging walk and culinary survival masterclass with Nick Weston • Grill Skills barbecue class with a Weber chef • Travel expenses, food supplies and equipment

Terms & Conditions

Winners must be available in June and July 2016 and consent to be photographed/filmed for Weber marketing purposes. For further terms visit

To make 1. Light the Q1200 and preheat on direct heat, to approximately 225°C. 2. Place the slices of bacon on the cooking grate and barbecue until crisp. Remove and place on kitchen paper. 3. Place a frying pan on the cooking grate, add the oil and heat. 4. Crack and whisk the eggs in the bowl with the herbs and seasoning. Pour the egg mixture into the frying pan and stir gently to begin with. 5. When the egg mixture starts to set, scatter the cheese on top. Put the lid on the grill and cook until the egg mixture is nearly set. 6. Fold half of the omelette over the other to create a semicircle. If necessary, turn it a couple of times until it’s cooked through. Eat garnished with the bacon and, if liked, a few foraged herbs.

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Updates | Experts Q: How can I stop breaking wind so much?

Know the signs of concussion and make sure you take enough time to recover

Blowing off is a natural biological process that occurs up to 20 times a day, due to the breakdown of foods in your digestive tract. If it’s a problem, try to eat smaller, balanced meals that your body will find easier to digest and absorb, and avoid artificial sweeteners and fizzy drinks. Regular exercise also helps maintain good bowel function.

Q: Should I be worried about my muscles aching the day after lifting weights?

Dr Nick Knight A GP in training, with a PhD in performance nutrition and physiology, Nick is MF ’s resident health expert. Follow him on Twitter @Dr_NickKnight

Ask D An y quesrtiNick o Tweet us ns? #


Q: I play rugby. Should people who do contact sports worry about concussion?

Photography Alamy


oncussions are temporary disturbances in your brain function brought on by blows to the head, or to other parts of your body that cause the head to shake. The risk of suffering one during contact sports such as rugby and boxing has had a lot of mainstream media coverage recently. But not every impact is going to be concussive, and the risk shouldn’t stop you from taking part. After all, it’s often the contact that makes these sports fun. It’s crucial, though, to be aware of the signs of concussion and how to deal with them. These can include physical symptoms such as headaches, nausea, dizziness and poor balance, cognitive problems such as impaired concentration and memory, and emotional issues such as mood swings. You’ll often feel them immediately, so it’s critical to leave the field as soon as possible – don’t try to be a hero! After that you need to rest your brain by getting plenty of sleep, avoiding staring at screens and steering clear of alcohol (and of course, skipping the activity which caused it in the first place). Most concussions resolve themselves within ten days, after which you’ll be safe to resume playing. But if the symptoms persist or develop into more serious issues such as limb weaknesses, vomiting, speech impairments or enduring headaches, request a clinical review from a doctor immediately or you could risk long-term brain disorders. Returning to action too soon also puts you in danger of second impact syndrome, which can be fatal. Listen to your body and act accordingly.

Short answer: no. The feeling of pain is delayed onset muscle soreness – or DOMS for short – which usually peaks 24 to 48 hours after exercise. Let your muscles repair during this time – you can still go to the gym, just work them lightly to increase blood flow.

Q: My snoring keeps my partner awake? What can I do? Snoring is caused by the soft tissues of the mouth and throat vibrating. Losing excess weight helps reduce pressure on your throat, as does avoiding cigarettes and alcohol, which weaken the throat muscles. If you’re already a lean man who doesn’t drink or smoke, try sleeping on your side. A good orthopaedic pillow will stop you rolling onto your back. July 2016 | 33

Updates | Experts

Andy Torbet A former paratrooper and bomb disposal officer in Iraq, Andy is now an extreme skydiver, underwater explorer and climber – and MF ’s regular adventure expert Follow Andy


Q: I want to try wild swimming. Can I just go jump in a lake?


’m assuming you can swim, right? Sudden immersion into cold water can cause even strong swimmers to suffer involuntary gasping reflex (which causes inhalation of water), heart arrhythmia and muscle cramps. Enter the water slowly. It extends the pain but if you treat it like an exercise in mental fortitude, and give yourself a minute or two to acclimatise, you’ll be fine. Alternatively, wear a wetsuit. Be aware of current and tides. Find out how fast they are and work out what you can handle. Then there’s water quality. Illnesses like Weil’s disease (or leptospirosis, if you’re a man in a lab coat) are not uncommon in the UK so the cleaner the water the better. Head as far from the urban sprawl as possible. Find beautiful lakes nestled in natural mountain amphitheatres, waterfall pools or tree-lined riverbank. It’s about feeling nature on your bare skin and seeing the world from the unique perspective of the waterline. Oh, and one more thing: monsters. Apart from Nessie, we have kelpies in Scottish lochs, mermaids in Peak District pools, dragons in Welsh llyns, and witches in the Yorkshire lakes. So think about what just touched your leg… 34 | July 2016

y Ask Ansdtagram In re r o t e e Tw adventu your stions que dyT #AskAn

Adventure Head for the cleanest water you can find and check the tides and currents before you dive in

Q: A knife comes in useful on most expeditions. What kind would you recommend? I always carry at least one knife (usually two). A good general-purpose knife will have no more than a 3in (7.5cm) folding blade – you can legally carry one of these in the UK without a specific reason. You can only carry larger or fixed blade knives in certain circumstances. Folding blades are easier to carry and – if you choose a multi-tool – come with other handy items such as saws, wirecutters and pliers. Most soldiers carry something like a Leatherman rather than a Rambo knife. They can be hard to keep clean, though, and can rust in salt water so I use a folding titanium knife for sea kayaking. Folding blades are weaker, so if you’re planning to split logs, hack at jungle or fight bears consider a knife made for the purpose.

Q: What are your top motivational books? I don’t fill my Kindle with the stories of divers, climbers, explorers or adventurers. I prefer autobiographies of successful people in other fields such as politicians, sportsmen, astronauts and Arnold Schwarzenegger (obviously). I’m motivated by support and rejection. If a person or organisation chooses to support me – commissioning a show, sponsoring me, offering me the chance to talk at their school – I am inspired to live up to their faith and to improve so that I’m worthy of that support. But if someone rejects me (it happens a lot), I’m inspired to become better at what I do so they will rue the day they passed me over. When life is going well, I want to get out of bed and do better. When life is going badly, I want to get out of bed and do better.

Q: My girlfriend wants an adventure in Cornwall, but I want to avoid the tourists. Where can you recommend? In a word: Pembrokeshire. It’s the Welsh Cornwall. Good surfing, amazing sea-cliff climbing, and great diving and snorkelling. You’ll still get Bank Holiday crowds but it’s not as busy as Cornwall – yet. If you really want to dodge the crowds, go to the Outer Hebrides, Orkney or Shetland. They have some of the best surf beaches in the UK as well as amazing stretches of white sand beaches (the Thai tourist board famously used a beach in North Uist in a “Visit Thailand” advert by mistake). The seas are clear and you can walk for days and not see a soul. However, be warned this is the North Atlantic coast. It can be spectacular, calm and sunny, but be prepared for fierce weather. July 2016 | 35


Updates | Experts

Fe e l l i ke y o u h a v e the weight of the world on your shoulders? Time to work on your bench press technique

Q: I want to build explosive power at home. Is there a kitfree solution? Try a move I call The Killer. Get into a decline press-up position with your feet on a bench, step or something similarly stable, then do a press-up. From the top of the move, jump your feet to the floor, then jump them back to the bench – you’ll need to kick out explosively to stick the landing. Too easy? Turn it into a clap press-up for an added challenge.


Dan Roberts

Trainer to film stars, models and other PTs, Dan’s a former athlete who specialises in movement – and MF ’s regular fitness columnist

Q: I’m worried that bench

pressing is ruining my shoulders. How do I fix it?


he classic answer would be to do more pulling movements – face pulls and pullaparts especially – but that’s not the whole story. If you’re developing a hunch, then focus on correcting the bench-press movement itself, so that you can do it damage-free. Try this: lie on a foam roller so that it’s running down the length of your spine. Focus

on “pinching” it with your shoulder blades, so that you almost feel as if you could grip it and pull it off the ground, then get a spotter to pass you a pair of fairly light dumbbells – about 50% of what you’d usually bench. Use them to do a couple of sets of five, and this will “cue” your shoulders into the right position for the rest of your bench session.

Three words: lactic acid tolerance. A Tour de France cyclist would fare better than you’d expect at dips – not because of deceptively huge upper-arm musculature, but because they’re so good at handling the pain of serious lactic acid build-up. The only way to develop that tolerance, sadly, is to endure it – but it’s simple, if not easy. Do a press-up, hold yourself in the halfway-down position for as long as you can, then do reps to failure. Repeat until you feel awful, rest and do it a few more times. You’ll get there. July 2016 | 37

Photography Danny Bird

As Tweet o k Dan your trainrinInstagram g queries

Q: I’ve been challenged to a dips contest by a stronger friend. What will improve my chances of winning?

Updates | Experts

Joel Snapee

MF ’s associate editor wants to be able to eat Hobnobs and hitit the gym without being made to feel bad about either

Q: Should biscuits tell us what exercises to do?

Photography iStock


magine, for a moment, guilt-scoffing a packet of Jaffa ffa Cakes that has a tiny logo on the side, de, informing you that if you plough through the lot you’ll need to hit the rowing machine for an hour to undo the damage. That hellish vision of the future comes to you courtesy of Shirley Cramer, chief executive of the Royal Society of Public Health, who believes that food and drinks should be labelled with “activity equivalent” calorie information. And, presumably, that nobody should ever be able to eat a shame-free biscuit again. “The aim is to prompt people to be more mindful of the energy they consume and how these calories relate to activities in their everyday lives,” wrote Cramer in the British Medical Journal, citing research which found that 44% of people find current front-of-pack information confusing. “To encourage them to be more physically active.” On the face of it, this isn’t the worst idea I’ve ever heard. Sure, counting calories is a fundamentally flawed science, based on estimates that are often inaccurate when they’re printed on the packet, get more out-of-kilter based on your body’s own calorie absorption rates (we tend to absorb fewer calories from nuts and seeds than they actually contain, for instance, and more from fibre-rich foods), and can be further thrown off by your own stomach (gut bacteria alone can change how many calories you take in). However, that’s nit-picking when it

comes to custard creams. The fact is it’s easy to underestimate how many calories snack foods contain, and relating that information to actual physical toil is one way to make it concrete. So why not do it?

Don’t punish yourself

Two reasons. Firstly, the calories burned by exercise are, if anything, harder to calculate than the ones in the biscuit tin. One man’s hour-long jog is another man’s Hyde Park hell-run, and most people (especially ones who aren’t used to exercise) are likely to overestimate the effort they’re putting in. If you’re burning 1,000 calories in 45 minutes, for instance, you’re either a Tour de France cyclist or having the absolute worst hour of your life – not simply doing your gym’s HIIT class. But my main problem with exercise recommendations on biscuit packets is that they relegate exercise to penance. It’s like saying a couple of Hail Marys after you binge on Haribo Tangfastics: a doleful chore that makes a misery out of something you should enjoy. Exercise isn’t supposed to be drudgery – it ought to be the best bit of your day, the thing you protect and look forward to, and do for the sheer love of doing it. Not just something you do The Bottom Line Don’t look at snacking because you as a simple calories in/out equation. All had one too that does is ruin your gym session. many Jaffa Cakes.


The extra amount of calories (per day) that people with a higher proportion of firmicutes bacteria take in


The total calories in one gram of protein. Your body is only able to absorb four of them, though


The number of extra calories that people with high “brown fat” (fat tissues containing a high percentage of mitochondria) can burn per day

July 2016 | 39

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07 16

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There’s lots we’d like to do it to – but we found one who actually enjoys that kind of thing. Busted singer Matt Willis hits the mat with MF Words Matt Huckle Photography Will Bremridge

PB | Exposure


t’s not often you get the chance to hit a pop star in the face without facing criminal proceedings. So when MF heard that an ex-boy band member fancied a boxing session, we wasted no time digging out our gloves. Matt Willis, 32, shot to fame as the singer/bassist of Busted, the power-pop trio who sold five million records during the 2000s. After they split, he went on to be a TV presenter and actor – as well as eating kangaroo anus and crocodile penis in the sixth series of I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here!, winning the show in the process. Busted re-formed last year and are just about to embark on a sold-out tour to promote their new album – but MF is slightly concerned about Willis: if we were best known for a song about a time-traveller telling us that our great-great-greatgranddaughter was a hottie, we might think twice about walking into a gym full of people who like landing a few punches…

Kicking junk food was the moment when fitness clicked for Willis

So when you’ve been on the telly quite a lot, do you find that people want to put it on you in the gym? A little bit. The first time I went to a Thai boxing class a guy gave me quite a hard time. He beelined for me when we were partnering up for sparring and he fucking smacked me around. But it didn’t make you want to quit? It didn’t really. It was just one dickhead in one class. Every other experience I’ve had in martial arts has been nothing but positive, especially in the MMA and BJJ [Brazilian jiu jitsu] gyms. It’s just a friendly environment and everyone wants to learn. Are you a lethal weapon yet? Not quite! I’ve not being doing this long so I’m definitely a beginner. I’m always one of the worst at every class, but I find people are very tolerant of that. They don’t want beat you up – they want to encourage you and help you.


So what inspired you to learn to fight? My flatmate suggested watching a UFC event. I thought, “This is the most incredible thing I’ve ever seen”. I found myself watching it more and more. I’d have my mates over and we’d have UFC nights. I’d cook supposedly healthy food, and sometimes we’d train beforehand. But watching fights is a few steps removed from actually doing it... Training came a bit later. There was a point when I’d put on loads of weight and I got really unhealthy. I looked awful and I decided I needed to take care of myself more. I wasn’t interested in the gym so fighting was a way of keeping fit. Was there one specific moment when you decided you needed to get into shape? 44 | July 2016

I got married and I hated myself in the wedding pictures. I looked like a fat mess.

What steps did you take? I’d had a problem with drink and drugs and I stopped all that. But I still looked bad a year later. Then I realised, “Oh it’s probably because I’m eating fried chicken and drinking things with loads of sugar in”. So it was the food that made everything click? Once I started taking care of nutrition, it all clicked. I’ve got a bad relationship with food. I’m very obsessive about it.

You’re an all-or-nothing type guy? I’ve learnt that I’m not very good at moderation. It doesn’t work for me. Anything that can be taken too far, I’ll take too far. Sugar is the worst. If I have it, something triggers in my brain… the same as it does with any other mindaltering substance. Something happens to me and I become a monster with it – I can’t control myself. Which is ridiculous and I hate it! But it’s just something about me, which I’ve had to learn. Does that mean you don’t have any guilty pleasures? I do have a bit of dark chocolate every now and again. I’m wild, aren’t I? After warming up and hitting the pads, it’s time for some sparring. We do a few rounds and we sensibly keep it light, although one or two sneaky shots do get through. On both sides. Now that we’ve punched each other let’s get to the intense questions... You’ve been in EastEnders and on the West End stage. Do you feel pressure to take acting seriously because you’re famous for something else?

Having achieved his ambition of punching a pop star, MF’s Matt goes for a kick

Training for ďŹ ght scenes meant Willis had to knock his technique into shape

July 2016 | 45

PB | Exposure Massively. I want to be fully prepared. In fact that’s how I am with everything now. Nothing good ever comes from not being prepared. I’m playing a part where there are fight scenes soon and I’m supposed to look like I can mess people up.

4 2 7 1 3 4 10

UK number one singles for Busted

Brit awards

Episodes of EastEnders Willis appeared in as Stacey Branning’s boyfriend Luke

Ex-Chelsea footballers Willis has acted alongside (Franck Lebeouf in the Second World War film Allies)

Willis is expecting his third child with TV presenter wife Emma this spring

West End shows Willis has appeared in: Flashdance, Footloose, The West End Men and Wicked

Years between Busted’s split and reunion

100,000 Tickets sold in the first hour when Busted’s 2016 tour was announced

46 | July 2016

Does that change how you prepare? Absolutely. It’s in the little details. I do fight training for fitness and for fun. But that presents some problems. For instance, I found out my elbows flare, which is fine if you’re just keeping fit, but you’d never do that as a boxer. I just need to look skilled in fucking people up. Have you ever thought about fighting for real? I was reading about Mark Wahlberg when he did The Fighter. His trainer was saying he would quite happily put him in the ring with any pro boxer and he would do well. Are you calling Mark Wahlberg out? No! I just need to get a boxing part, then I can train like that. Did you see the training videos for Warrior? The ones with our dual obsessions, MMA and Tom Hardy? You bet we did. They went to fight camp for four weeks. How cool is that? I would love to go to fight camp. You’d have to be there for your job. Training is a massive inconvenience to anyone’s life. There isn’t a convenient time to go – I have to put that into my day, so that often means I get up at 5am or train when everyone else is having lunch. To do that for your job? “My job today is to train all day.” That’s what I want. You’re still best known for Busted. Do you want to leave that behind? No, not at all. I love Busted. We got back together in June 2015 and we hadn’t been a band for about 12 years. Without being too dramatic, this is what I’ve wanted to happen for the last six years. I’m stoked about it! We went away and recorded some really amazing music, which we’re all really creatively happy with. Does it sound like your old music? It’s a massive progression. Would you know it was Busted? Probably not musically, but you’d hear it lyrically because we’re still us. Last question. Do you stand by your prediction in the song Year 3000 that by then we’ll live underwater? Well, with the way the world is going, we were actually ahead of our time... We’re going to go down as prophets. And with that MF heads off to book ourselves some swimming lessons, leaving Willis dreaming of days just spent learning to fight and – possibly – soggy triplebreasted women. Or kangaroo anuses.



MF & The Bluebeards Revenge present...



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Holding a razor at a 30° angle to your face, shave with as little pressure as possible in the direction of hair growth. Use short strokes and rinse and re-lather after every pass. Once you’ve finished, apply a cooling post-shave balm to soothe your skin.


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What he goes to fight school for? “Fitness and fun”

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In association with

PB | MF Picks

Shoot to thrill 1

Best for... Extreme stats

Best 3 Undefor... r wat er


Best for... Night filming

Extreme-sports cameras have evolved. These are the best you can get

48 | July 2016


Tom Tom Bandit £330

Ever wanted to know the speed, acceleration, altitude, rotation or even G-force you hit in your clips? The Bandit’s sensors track all that and can embed it into your video – ideal for social media bragging.


ActiveOn CX £65

Twin the CX with an infrared lens and you can use its night mode to capture the thrills (and spills) of nocturnal trail runs and rides – all of which is made much easier by an überpractical user interface.


Garmin Virb XE £350

Waterproof up to 50m, this can record crisp 1080p footage at 60 frames per second (fps), as well as crystal-clear audio. If you’re serious about dunking your camera in search of a shot, it’s more than worth it.


B Easy m est for... ountin g


Best for... Travelling light 6

Best for... First-time filmers


Drift Stealth 2 £100

A rotatable lens and a compact design mean you can mount the Drift on almost anything and still get the angle you want. To take it to sea, though, you’ll need the waterproof casing, sold separately.




ISAW Edge £180

An excellent all-rounder that can hold its own against the mighty GoPro despite its modest price, even offering super sharp 4k filming at an (admittedly clunky) rate of 10fps as well as 1080p at 60fps.


GoPro Hero4 Session £160

This has plenty of the good points of GoPro’s more costly models – including outstanding quality footage and simple functionality – in an affordable unit that gets bonus points for its eye-catching design.


Panasonic HX-A1M £180

At a measly 45g, the HX-A1M weighs less than a big bag of crisps – ideal if you’re covering long distances with minimal kit. The image quality doesn’t match the more expensive options on test, though. July 2016 | 49

Words Ben Ince Photography Danny Bird

Best for... Filming on a

PB | MF Picks

What to wear for a Tough Mudder*

Down among the mud and the blood and the tears… with the right kit, you can survive the meanest of OCRs

(* or any other obstacle course race)

Planning on tackling an OCR in regular running clobber? It’s time to reassess your wardrobe


1 Heavy cotton T-shirts will soak up water and weigh you down. A compression top, on the other hand, will dry quickly and allow your skin to breathe. The Under Armour Heatgear Short Sleeve Compression Shirt is perfect for warm-weather events, with stretch-mesh panels that provide ventilation for your pits (£20,


2 While by no means compulsory, a reliable pair of gloves will help protect your hands from splinters, blisters, rope burns and numb fingers, while also improving your grip – making muddy monkey bars far more straightforward to navigate. Fitstream’s Calisthenics Gloves feature a silicone-enhanced palm for maximum traction, as well as a mesh back to stop your hands getting sweaty when you run (£14,


3 FOOTWEAR Look for a shoe that combines a chunky, firm-gripping tread with a minimal, lightweight upper that’ll keep you upright but won’t see you get bogged down when things get wet.

4 The less your foot moves around inside your shoe, the smaller the likelihood of you developing whopping great blisters. Pick a thin, skin-tight sock, ideally made with moisture-wicking fabric to keep your feet cool.

The Asics Gel-Fujitrabuco has an antigravel tongue and a rock-protection plate to keep your foot protected and debris out (£105,

The Snow+Rock Approach sock has a moisture-wicking sole and is cut slightly higher to give greater ankle protection (£9,

50 | July 2016


5 A pair of good-quality compression shorts will maintain controlled pressure on your upper leg muscles, helping to increase blood flow and reduce the risk of injury. The Salomon S-Lab Twin short offers compression and flexibility, plus its lightweight outer layer will help you to avoid lunchboxing (£130,


2 3



July 2016 | 51

DOPING ONLY FOR HAIR oo ts , Ava il ab le at B ar ke ts m le ad in g su p er ie s. & p h ar m ac

DOPING? Today, we know caffeine helps protect hair from the negative impact of testosterone. This means that it can help to reduce hair loss.


PB | Grooming

Scents of summer No matter how sweaty you get, these fragrances are designed to keep you smelling fresh and confident Eau de Lacoste L.12.12 ENERGIZED £47 for 100ml


Issey Miyake L’Eau d’Issey Pour Homme Summer £41 for 125ml What they say “When flower meets water… A fresh, masculine scent composed with delicate, light flowers with top notes of coriander, kiwi and grapefruit and heart notes of nutmeg and fresh pineapple.” What they mean “It’s fresh, breezy and a little bit fruity – reminiscent of a seaside holiday.”


What they say “Unfolding with pulsing energy and fiery intensity, this dynamic scent is a tribute to Lacoste’s sporting heritage.” What they mean “Spicy but understated. What you imagine a French footballer would smell like under his cashmere scarf.”

Atelier Cologne Bergamote Soleil £90 for 100ml What they say “Celebrates the elegance of citruses, the traditional ingredients of a cologne, blended with the most precious raw materials in perfumery for perfectly balanced creations with outstanding lasting power.” What they mean “Oranges. Or maybe a high-class sorbet.”





Shay & Blue Oud Alif £85 for 100ml What they say “Creamy, soft, rounded woods, inspired by the great fragrances of the Middle East. Spiked with the richness of chocolat noir and notes of elegant leather, saffron and dark patchouli.” What they mean “Like a romantic walk in the forest, with a hint of comfy old sofa.”



Calvin Klein CK One Summer £40 for 100ml What they say “Opens with an invigorating lime mojito accord further enhanced by fresh lemon.” What they mean “If you like fancy cocktail bars, you’ll like this.”

July 2016 Month 2015 | 53

Words Ben Ince Photography Danny Bird



If you want something nobody else has, you’ll need to do things nobody else is doing. MF presents lessons to live by from the men rewriting the rules in their chosen ďŹ elds Words Joel Snape

July 2016 | 55

The new action hero S tand aside, Statham, Snipes and, er, Seagal – Frank Grillo is the real deal. This actor knows enough martial arts to seriously mess you up…

You’ll recognise Frank Grillo, even if you don’t know the name. An actor for 20 years, he’s made his name in the past five – first by turning what was supposed to be an unnamed part alongside Tom Hardy and Joel Edgerton in Warrior into a showcase, then by fighting wolves opposite Liam Neeson in The Grey… and more recently by telling US talk show host Jimmy Kimmel, “I could kill you” on live TV. He stars in MMA drama Kingdom – now on its third season – and although hidden

under a mask, he has a big role in Captain American: Civil War as Crossbones. He’s definitely got the credentials: he started wrestling when he was eight, began Japanese jiu jitsu not long after that, and boxed as a teenager. And he doesn’t take it easy on co-stars. “That man can’t pull his punches,” Captain America star Chris Evans told the Metro newspaper. “If you don’t block Frank Grillo’s punch, you’re going to get mashed.” Here’s his blueprint for MMA muscle.

Train everywhere

When not in the gym, Grillo’s workout involves nothing more elaborate than a set of dumbbells and a skipping rope. Do 60 seconds of skipping, then ten manmakers – a burpee holding dumbbells,

then pressing them overhead – and repeat ten times for an all-day fat burn.

Hit the bag

His boxing workout? “Six rounds on mitts, six rounds on the bag. Abs work and a fast-paced two miles to finish.” Invest in a pair of handwraps – according to studies, they’ll let you punch harder, activating more fast-twitch muscle.

Hang out with people better than you

Grillo made sure renowned fight coach Greg Jackson and UFC lightweight contender Joe Stephenson were hired as consultants on Kingdom, to add veracity to the punch-ups. If you become more like the people you hang around, it’s worth choosing your friends carefully.

Grillo started fight training when he was eight

56 | July 2016

Kingdom is available on Virgin Media On Demand now. Grillstock’s The Bar-B-Q Book is available now (£20,

Turn down the heat to up the taste, say Merrington and Finch

The meat masters


he founders of Grillstock didn’t know what they were doing when they started – but now they’re filling the UK with quality meat…

In 2010, the concept of running an American-style barbecue competition in Bristol’s Harbourside was… unconventional, to say the least. But 240 kilos of meat and 6,000 satisfied carnivores later, this meatier alternative to Glastonbury was firmly established. Two years later co-creators Jon Finch and Ben Merrington launched their own Smokehouse and made Grillstock into the UK’s premier BBQ event – and they’re hungry for more. “We both travelled in America and both loved barbecue food,”

says Finch. “It is something you don’t really get in the UK.” Here’s his recipe for off-the-grid success.

Slow everything down

“Everyone cooks with the coals too hot. It turns into a battle of man versus flaming inferno. Our advice is to pile your coals up on one side of the barbecue and raise the grill bars a little if you can. Give that meat the time it needs to cook through properly over indirect heat. Not only will your food be tender, succulent and delicious, but less time battling the flames means more time drinking beer.”

Surround yourself with good people

“The first few years we spent charging around trying to do absolutely everything

ourselves and ended up broken men. Now we have a great festival crew, each an expert in their own area. It’s made for a far slicker production and actually allows us the time to kick back and have a drink while soaking in the smoky vibes.”

Always look for a new edge

“In anything, the keys to winning are attention to detail and putting in the practice. For the competing teams, perfection is in the weeks, months and years they spend evolving their own rubs and sauces, evolving cooking techniques and smoking woods. Likewise, what you see over Grillstock weekend is the culmination of thousands and thousands of hours work throughout the year. It’s a mission, but we love it.” July 2016 | 57

Smith taught himself CrossFit training f r o m Yo u T u b e v i d e o s

The world’s fittest man


en Smith won the 2015 Reebok CrossFit Games by breaking every training rule in the book. You aren’t going to be as fit as him – but you can still learn from him…

How do you become the World’s Fittest Man? Dozens of coaches will try to sell you a template, but 2015 CrossFit Games champion Ben Smith did it his own way: training in his garage for years, building his own plyometric boxes and teaching himself Olympic lifts and gymnastics with nothing except YouTube and a video camera. At the age of 19, he was one of the youngest athletes to make it to the Games and bagged two third-place finishes before finally cresting the podium in 2015. 58 | July 2016

Add barbells

Now he’s working out in slightly more spacious surroundings – his own gym, CrossFit Krypton – but he’s still trashing concepts like overtraining and linear periodisation at almost every workout, training at a volume that would crush any ordinary man while following his own plan. Here’s your template for CrossFitstyle ultra-fitness.

Your CrossFit Total is the combined weight you lift in an overhead press, back squat and deadlift. Add in a front squat and you’ve got the barbell fundamentals down. Do one lift a day, for three sets of five reps, to build up a base of genuine strength that will transfer to anything.

Start with bodyweight

Learn some gymnastics

Pull-ups, press-ups and squats are the baseline. Start every workout with three sets of five, ten and 15 in that order to build efficiency and familiarity with the movements. If you’re feeling brave, try the CrossFit WOD “Cindy” – as many rounds as possible in 20 minutes. One round a minute is the goal.

Your first essential investment? A set of rings. Work up to sets of five dips and pull-ups, then move on to the muscle-up, a pull-up that moves seamlessly into a dip. Start with a false grip – the inside of your wrists on the rings – and throw a headbutt as you pull to get yourself on top of the rings.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out Of The Shadow is released on 30th May

The actorathlete


tephen Amell is the closest thing Hollywood has to a real-life superhero, and the Arrow star is not interested in taking the easy way to A-list muscle…

For most actors, eight weeks of bench-and-curling with endless chicken provided by an on-call chef is going above and beyond the call of duty when it comes to playing a superhero. Stephen Amell is a little more… extreme. En route to making a name for himself as Arrow’s Oliver Queen, he developed an interest in parkour that’s since evolved into a serious habit. Now his Instagram feed is a non-stop highlight reel of somersaults, salmon ladders and Ninja Warrior-style stunts. July 2016 | 59

The fight changer


utspoken, opinionated and unconventional, Conor McGregor is on track to be the UFC’s highest-ever earner – assuming he doesn’t actually decide to retire, that is… It’s a measure of Conor McGregor’s clout inside and outside the Octagon that a tweet he posted about retiring sent the sport into a spin. Thankfully the UFC’s biggest draw soon announced that this was nothing more than a jokey grumble, his way of rebelling against the sport’s relentless round of promotional appearances. And the worldwide sigh of relief was almost audible. In case you’re unfamiliar (or in need of a swift refresher), McGregor entered the UFC as a prospect in 2013, then – armed with a fearsome knockout reel and elitelevel trash talk – proceeded to transform the UFC’s under-regarded featherweight division into the hottest class in the sport. Fast-forward three years and a 13-second knockout of long-reigning champ Jose Aldo cemented his credentials as the king of his division. Then came all the stuff you’ve probably seen: the double-weight-class jump to take on Nate Diaz in a losing effort, the public spat with the UFC and, in April, the “retirement”.’ He’s played it all perfectly – as an estimated net worth north of $14 million attests. Here’s the template.

Think unconventional

Sure, his “movement” practice took a knock in the wake of the Diaz defeat, but before that McGregor built a career around unconventional movement and set-ups – blending capoeira and karate moves with traditional boxing hooks and uppercuts. The lesson? Fundamentals work, but they work better when you mix them with the thing that makes you unique.

Talk a good game

When he was three (stellar) fights into his career, McGregor was calling out Floyd Mayweather – despite the fact everyone knew that the fight wouldn’t happen. He built a career on braggadocio… and backed it up when the time came.

60 | July 2016 Month 2015

Photography Getty

Know the value of a stunt

In 2016, McGregor was driving to the gym when he saw a balcony in a Californian apartment block that had not only an Irish flag hanging from it, but a cardboard cut-out of him. Obviously, he paid the homeowner an on-camera visit – and earned a slew of new followers in the process. Everyone’s a brand now, so make yours count.

Shy and retiring? McGregor is anything but

Month July 2016 2015 | 61

The success story


Photography Roland Lane Grooming Laura Tucker

ax Bridger and his business partners at LDN Muscle are ripping up the fitness rulebook – and getting serious results. Here’s how they’re doing it…

In case you haven’t been paying attention, LDN Muscle is getting big. After launching as an e-book business in 2013 – with Cutting, Bulking and Bikini Guides as their flagship titles – celebrity endorsements from the likes of Callum Best and Amy Willerton helped them clock up 60,000 downloads. Now LDN is thinking bigger. With an app launched at the start of the year and recently launched education courses designed to help trainers and nutritionists design programmes that are simple and sustainable, LDN Muscle might just manage to change the way the regular gym-goer thinks about fitness. Because right now – according to the LDN team – what’s happening isn’t quite working. “We started the business because people were asking us for advice anyway,” says MF’s cover star Max Bridger, who launched the brand alongside twins Tom and James Exton and his own brother Lloyd. “We all worked at our local leisure centre, and a fifth guy – who’s our financial backer now – approached us and said he noticed us getting a lot of questions about how we train, what we eat, and how to get in better shape – and he told us we should be making a fitness guide.” And, crucially, it worked. Unlike other guides on the market, LDN Muscle’s ones focus on ways to make the basics of training manageable for normal people, with training splits that are more about functional muscle than bodybuilder-style isolation work and nutrition plans that 62 | July 2016

aren’t just grim. Before and after shots are encouraged, but long-term progress is more important. “It’s about being usable and digestible,” says Bridger. “It’s about building muscle naturally, and trying not to get conned by some of the supplements on the market. We’re telling people what we actually do, what we actually eat, the supplements we actually take.”

It’s not just about quick results

“Instead of just going with the ‘sexy’ workouts like HIIT Abs Blasters, we use the actual principles of resistance training to build up the weight you can manage over time. It’s not about doing hundreds of jumping jacks and mountain climbers and getting abs. It’s about doing big compound moves that engage your midsection properly, and supplementing that with some abs moves if you want.”

We don’t do pumpernickel toast

“We prefer meals that are easy to find the ingredients for, easy to make and easy to vary – not going to the specialist, crazy expensive section of the supermarket, or eating nothing but eggs and kale.”

We believe in multi-body part training

“For most people, it’s not about doing the big sexy chest workouts you see on YouTube. It’s much more efficient to train chest, shoulders and triceps all on the same day. You’re only going to get muscle growth for 24-48 hours after your workout, so you’re wasting five or six days while you wait for your next chest day, and you’re going to be incapacitated from DOMS anyway.”

Bridger trains for sustainable results

Most people will do better on flexible dieting than with clean eating

“When people talk about clean eating, most of the time they’re talking about a diet that has virtually no carbs in, or going gluten-free when they don’t need to. People should realise that you can be dedicated and still go out and have a drink at the weekend. You can eat for health and for aesthetics, just by having a balanced diet and making sure you include foods you enjoy.”

A drink with mates won’t destroy muscle

“I go out with my friends most weekends. In the run-up to this photoshoot, I finally convinced a friend I’d been working on for a while to go out in London – we went out on Saturday night and didn’t make it back until Sunday morning. I just lowered my calories a bit on Friday and Saturday, and took it from five meals to three on the Sunday. It doesn’t entirely account for the calories, but it reduces the damage a bit.”

Right now we’re putting together our education centres

“We’re teaching people to be personal trainers and nutrition coaches. We’re trying to make it a sustainable approach to life, rather than just, say, banning carbs. We’re trying to make it flexible and usable for everyone. We’ve got qualified nutritionists on board, going above and beyond what’s usually expected from these courses. It’s about going a bit beyond sticking someone on a low-carb diet for four weeks, taking an ‘after’ photo and then letting them pile on double the weight straight afterwards.”

Hanging out with your friends won’t ruin your training

Month July 2016 2015 | 63

Not everything you see on a motivational poster makes sense. Rethink the traditional rules of training – and you’ll revolutionise your fat loss and muscle growth 64 | July 2016

Words Joel Snape Photography Roland Lane Model Matt Ovens@WModels Grooming Laura Tucker

Month July 2016 2015 | 65


66 | July Month 2016 2015


It may rhyme pleasingly, but that doesn’t n’t mean it makes sense. “There “The “T here he re are dozens doz of ways to make progress without pain,” says strength and conditioning coach Rannoch ch Donald. Donal “Greasing the groove is one. Pick a number of reps of a bodyweight move you can do without even breathing hard – five press-ups, say, or two pull-ups - and then aim to do 20 or 30 sets throughout the day. You’ll fit in a tonne of training volume without even breaking a sweat.” No grimacing required.

ALWAYS A LWAYS G GO FULL-R FULL-ROM ROM Yes, in theory using a full range of motion will challenge your muscles more. No, there’s no excuse for half-repping your back squats just to sneak an extra plate or two on the bar. But if you’re stuck on a gains plateau – strength or muscle – then selectively using partial ROM might help. Instead of deadlifting, for

instance, set the bar up just above knee height in a power rack and pull from there – you’ll be able to handle more weight, for a better challenge to your grip and back. Stuck on the dumbbell bench? Do the move while lying on the floor: you’ll safeguard your shoulders while making things (slightly) easier.

DON’T ‘CHEAT’ Modern training theory scorns the man who uses his entire body to do a barbell biceps curl – and yet, he’ll quite often be sporting arms that put yours to shame. What gives? The truth: “cheating” moves can be a valid way to build muscle. For best results, incorporate a cheat into a technical drop set. Do a set of curls to failure keeping the form as strict as you can, then – when your arms have given up – use a bit of momentum to crank out another few reps before you drop the weights. You’ll push your muscles past failure, causing more micro-tears and enhancing your gains.

RUN FAST TO GET FAST Sure, occasionally. But you need to balance speed sessions session with recovery. Do interval sessions – 400 metres of sprinting and 90 seconds of rest, repeated six times, would be one suggestion – a couple of times a week, with a longer, slow-paced recovery effort once.

ADDING STRENGTH MEANS NS S GETTING GET T BIGGER ER There are two ways to build strength: increase the size of your muscle fibres, or increase the number of them that “fire”

in co-or co-ordination as you lift. Do the latter (by lifting for less than three reps) and you’ll add strength, not size.

SQUATS FIX EVERYTHING “Shut up and squat!” “If in doubt, squat!” It’s the mantra of the biggest men in your gym, but it only makes sense if you’ve got the mobility to do it right. If squeezing

yourself into a back squat means folding yourself in half like an accordion, then switch to the goblet version – a dumbbell held in front of your chest – instead.

YOU NEED NE EED TO TO EMBRACE EMBRA ACE THE TH HE GRIND GRIND Yes, consistency cy beats everything else, but you know what keep keeps eps yo ep you u in the gym, day after afte af ter day? te Having fun. Find movements you enjoy, and hit them hard. July 2016 | 67


Wrong. “Winners quit the right things,” says productivity coach Oliver Emberton. “If anything, they quit more often than other people. We mistake a burning desire within us for certainty that we’ll get it. But willpower alone can’t rewrite the laws of the universe. “Everyone knows it takes hard work to become successful, but that’s only half the story. It also takes courage and insight to pick the right things, and quit everything else.” The moral in the gym? Pick a few key moves to improve, and throw out everything else for a few weeks.

ABS ARE MADE IN THE KITCHEN False. Of course, everyone has a set of rectus abdominis muscles lurking under their belly fat, and yes, once you drop below 10% body fat, you’ll see them. But that doesn’t mean they’re created equal. Train your abs for

hypertrophy like you would any other body part: with sets of eight to ten reps, using weight if necessary, and they’ll grow like anything else. So when you reveal them via health eating, you’ll have something worth showing off.

WHEN IN DOUBT, ADD WEIGHT Sure, if you want to fast-track an injury. Your alternative: create more tension with the weight you’ve got. “If muscle’s the goal, lifting to a strict tempo works better than simply ‘cheating’

the weight up,” says Equinox trainer Martin Sutcliffe. “Lower the weight for four seconds, pause at the bottom, then reverse directions. It works for almost any move.”

YOUR WARM-UP SHOULD BE EASY Dynamic stretching, mobility work, foam rolling, muscle activation: in recent years, warmup creep has seen the traditional “two minutes on a treadmill and some arm swings” turn into a laborious 20-minute ordeal. Your new warm-up? Five pressups, ten kettlebell swings, and ten goblet squats. Start with a 12kg kettlebell and keep moving up the weights until it starts to feel hard.

DON’T TRAIN THE SAME BODY PART TWO DAYS RUNNING Bodybuilding dogma, often misinterpreted. Unless you’re destroying your arms with a two-hour, multi-move workout from Hades, it’s fine to do chin-ups two days in a row.

68 | July 2016

FEAR OVERTRAINING OK, it’s a concern if you’re an Olympic-calibre athlete, but for the normal man, it’s overrated. Fear under-recovery more: download the SleepGenius to make sure you’re rested enough, and aim to get at least 150g of protein a day.

Month July 2016 2015 | 69


CARDIO IS BEST FOR HEALTH Science has your back on this one. Not only will building muscle and strength benefit your bone density – safeguarding you against osteoporosis and arthritis – there’s evidence that it offers protective effects against everything from

70 | July Month 2016 2015

Alzheimer’s to cardiovascular disease. For best results, mix both: two days a week of lifting and the occasional long walk or slow run will do it.

FAILURE IS NOT AN OPTION Failure is always an option. “If everything has to be a success, then there’s no room for, well, anything,” says strength coach Chet Morjaria. “It leaves no room for failing, reassessing and doing something better. It leaves no room for learning valuable mental and physical lessons when something goes wrong. It leaves lots of room for disaster from trying to save a rep, session or programme that is beyond saving.” Embrace the possibility of failure, in other words, and you’ll set yourself up for success. uccess.


If you’ve written the session down, you should do it… right? Not necessarily. Famed athletics coach Charlie Francis – who took the Canadian sprinting team from obscurity to medal-hoovering success in the

1980s – had one very simple rule for his athletes: if you clock up a PB, the session ends right there. The theory? It reduced overtraining, minimised injuries… and provided motivation. Use it.


True… sort of. Done properly, box jumps for maximum height will make you more explosive, but they’re also a good opportunity to face-plant yourself Instead do the standing broad self unconscious. u jump (two-footed take-off for maximum distance) and get all the rewards with less of the risk. rewa



In recent years, some middledistance runners have moved away from traditional, long-slog volume in favour of short, explosive sprints. Those runners tend to lose. “By doing long, slow continuous training you’re essentially stretching the left ventricle of your heart, allowing it to pump more blood

focused Tempo-focused coaches will assure you that the eccentric phase – the lowering part – of any exercise is the most important. But it’s not always the case. “By eliminating the eccentric bit of your training entirely – for instance, by doing moves that don’t have a lowering part, like power

per beat,” says S&C coach Aaron Jahn. “During HIIT training, the heart is trying to pump the blood in and out as fast as possible to supply you with oxygen, which thickens the walls but doesn’t have the same effect. Long, slow training improves your cardiac output, which makes you a more efficient athlete.”

cleans or rope climbs where you jump off at the top – you’ll cause morphological adaptations,” says coach and athlete Ross Edgley. “This means you’ll increase strength while limiting the higher stress and tension caused during the eccentric phase.” Translation: more gains, with less risk of overtraining.

IT’S NEVER OK TO CURL IN THE SQUAT RACK Realistically, if you’re curling more than your own bodyweight, then let’s face it: nobody’s going to complain. July 2016 | 71

(no climbing wall necessary) From the right way to sit (or, better yet, stand) at your desk to the best lighting for your office, the most efficient workouts and the best lunches to power you through the grind, here’s the ultimate to-do list for strengthening your body – and ramping up productivity – on the job

Words Bill Bradley Photography Andy Ryan

72 | July 2016

July 2016 | 73

It’s 2016, and even the most useless employers have realised that a fitter, healthier workforce means a fitter, healthier business. Consequently, business HQs are starting to look more upmarket gym than IBM. Drab offices are being turned into sleek spaces decked out with everything from climbing walls and smoothie bars to soundproof sleep pods and Pilates mats. But chances are that’s not the kind of place you’re working in right now. “The perks happening in Silicon Valley are great, but if you don’t have Google’s budget, how are you supposed to compete?” asks social psychologist Dr Ron Friedman, author of The Best Place To Work: The Art And Science Of Creating An Extraordinary Workplace. Luckily, you don’t need a world-class facility like Google’s to be a healthier working professional. If you want to maximise your fitness and boost your productivity at the same time, your work-exercise balance and on-the-job habits are entirely up to you. That could mean standing instead of sitting at your desk, taking well-timed walks around the office or simply adjusting the lighting at your workstation. Or maybe it means assembling the perfectly balanced, energising lunch, sliding in a rapid-fire workout in the time it would take you to buy a burrito or even catching a few surreptitiousbut-replenishing Zs. Sound crazy? Don’t worry: we’re here to help you achieve that work/life equilibrium. 74 | July 2016

Take a stand for your health Don’t walk, don’t spin and definitely don’t sit on a rubber ball while you’re trying to work The standing-desk craze arrived in 2011 and it wasn’t long before things started getting odd. First came the clunkier treadmill desk, followed by the wildly awkward elliptical-machine desk. “I’ve seen boardrooms stocked with stationary bikes around the table,” says Phil Haberstro, founder and executive director of the Wellness Institute. That’s right, the enormous communal spinning desk exists. While these may seem like a great idea – exercise is, after all, linked to

faster learning, speedier memory encoding and retrieval and greater creativity – exercising while working is actually a complicated issue. “Research shows that people who use treadmill desks – or even those balancing balls – are finding that multitasking physical tasks [such as walking or balancing while typing] can be just as counterproductive as multitasking mental tasks,” Friedman says. In other words, if that’s what you’re doing, you’re doing too much. “You’re

splitting your attention, and you’re probably making a lot of typos.” The research, published by the journal PLOS ONE last February, calculated that treadmill desks cause a dip in performance that lasts up to six months. In the case of gym-ball chairs, there’s evidence suggesting you may want to avoid them, too. In 2009 a British study showed that sitting on an exercise ball promoted an unhealthy slumping posture, while a study by Dutch researchers that same year found that it led to the compression of your vertebrae, or “spinal shrinkage”.

Get on your feet to burn fat While office treadmills may not be the way forward, MF officially endorses the standing desk. Not only does working standing up not overtax the brain, it has the added benefit of burning 80-100 calories an hour, improving blood flow, alleviating back pain, strengthening muscles and actually boosting productivity. “The health benefits are probably even greater than the data already suggests,” says Dr James Levine, a lead researcher on the PLOS ONE study and author of Get Up! Why Your Chair Is Killing You And What You Can Do About It. So what’s the right way to pull it off? For starters, ease into it. “People usually start standing all day, instantly, and that’s a mistake,” says Levine. “The risk is that your body will get worn down by working your muscles longer than you’re used to.” And be prepared to experience a tightness in your meniscus, the padding in your knees that absorbs pressure – it will fade over time. The key is proper technique, says physical therapist Dr Heather Moore. Her suggestion: stand tall, roll your shoulders up and back, let them

drop, then “stick your butt all the way out and tuck your pelvis all the way under”. Next, unlock your knees slightly. Finally, “bend your elbows 90°, keep your wrists straight, and make sure your weight is going through the middle of your feet – not your toes or heels.” Once you’re there, you’ll find your weight perfectly distributed.

If you have to sit, here’s how to do it Posture tips from sports chiropractor Leon Aibinder

…but sit to fight fatigue Any time you find yourself truly uncomfortable, take a seat, says Levine, who suggests setting a timer to alternate standing for 50 minutes with sitting for ten minutes at first. It’s also helpful to use an anti-fatigue mat, a rubber pad that softens the pressure on your knees and ankles by promoting subtle leg movements, which then pump more blood through the body. If your colleagues make fun of you for hovering like a watchtower over your floor – and they will – counter with the facts. “Be prepared to give everyone in your office the full health run-down,” says Mat Honan, Buzzfeed’s Silicon Valley bureau chief and a devout standup worker. They’ll ask you about it for the first three weeks, he warns. After that, they’ll just be eyeing you with jealousy.

“Always keep your elbows resting on the chair’s armrests and your wrists over the keyboard, not cocked outward like Spider-Man shooting his web.”

“Your knees should be at about 90°. This is the best position to ensure no slumping or slouching – both will strain your back muscles.”

“Your feet need to be either flat on the ground or on a footstool. Apply a light pressure on the ground – it activates your core.”

Don’t fear your vending machine Your office snack dispenser isn’t entirely evil – if you know what your best options are

Excellent Unsalted nuts “A great combination of fibre, healthy fats and protein,” says dietician Lori Zanini. “This will help keep hunger at bay till your next meal.” A single serving is around 50g. Good Popcorn High in fibre and antioxidants, says dietician Christy Harrison, and really not bad for you at all. Just steer clear of the buttery stuff, watch the sodium and avoid the trans fats and you should be fine.

Excellent Cereal bars Many have as much sugar as chocolate bars but if you find ones that contain things like fibrerich chia seeds, protein and omega 3s, these are the closest thing your vending machine has to celery and peanut butter. Good Dried fruit “This has lots of fibre and vitamins,” says Harrison, but it’s also jam-packed with sugar, so you could be priming yourself for a late-day crash (not to mention a calorie surplus). Just don’t eat too much.

You’re fired Crisps Zanini says they “tend to be low in fibre and ultra-processed, so they may taste great, but they’ll leave you looking for more shortly after”. Plus they’re already high in sodium before the flavouring’s added for an unhealthy double whammy.

July 2016 | 75

Take charge of your mood Just how important is your lighting to your work? Here are the illuminating facts “You can actually predict how satisfied people in a workspace are just by the amount of sunlight that enters the space,” says Friedman. And when you’re situated near a window – whether you overlook a peaceful garden or a brick wall – research shows you’ll be happier, more engaged and, ultimately, more productive. But if you’re marooned in fluorescent-lit cubeland, don’t despair. According to organisational psychologist Dr Michael Woodward, you can fight that anxiety-inducing ultra-bright light by fitting a lamp with the adjustable a Philips Hue bulb (available from Amazon). With the Hue, “you can control the colour and light intensity from your phone,” says Woodward. “For reading, the concentration setting [has] cooler bluish colours; the relaxed setting is almost red.” And you’ll find that more than your mood improves. “Research shows that employees who have control over their own lighting report less fatigue during the workday,” says Woodward. 76 | July 2016

Calming your mind takes just the flick of a switch

The perfect lunch-hour workout If you really want your results from the gym to spill over into the boardroom, you may be better off exercising before work than after. ”You’d be activating your muscles and the systems that get your body to fight depression,” says physiologist and molecular biology expert Dr Keith Barr. But if the morning’s out of the question, the next best thing is hitting the gym when your workmates are heading to Pret. With this rigorous routine from trainer Sean Hyson, you’ll have ample time to shower, change and get back to your desk within an hour.

Directions For each exercise, choose a load that allows you 10-15 reps. Set a timer for eight minutes. Alternate sets of A and B exercises, resting minimally between sets until time is up. On each set, perform two fewer reps than you’re capable of (leave a couple in the tank).

Warm-up Jumping jack Time 30sec Press-up Reps 10 Hip bridge Reps 10 Lie on your back on the floor, bend your knees and drive through your heels to “bridge” up with your hips. Repeat the series for five minutes.

1A Leg press Get into a leg press machine and place your feet on the footplate, shoulder-width apart, with toes turned out. Lower your legs until your knees are bent 90°, then press back up. 1B Dumbbell row Hold a dumbbell in your right hand and rest your left knee and hand on a bench. Retract your right shoulder blade and row the weight to your right hip pocket.

2A Dumbbell bench press Lie back on a bench with a dumbbell in each hand at shoulder level. Press the weights straight up. 2B Step-up Hold dumbbells and place one foot on a bench or box so your thigh is parallel with the floor. Step up onto the box, pushing through your heel, and let the trailing leg hang off the box.

3A Seated overhead press Sit holding dumbbells at shoulder level and brace your core. Press the weights overhead. 3B Bodysaw Place your feet on sliders (or a towel if on a waxed wooden floor). Get into a plank position with your body in a straight line and abs braced. Push your forearms into the floor to slide backward, then draw yourself forward again.

Pack your own power lunch For the best energy- and mind-boosting desk lunch, you need four things: good carbs, lean protein, vegetables, and healthy fats. “Think of foods like sweet potatoes, beans, and quinoa,” says dietician Lori Zanini. “With enough of those, there’s no need to count calories or stick to a certain ratio.” Here are four delicious idiot-proof DIY lunches to work into your repertoire.



Go to sleep at your desk (if you dare)

3 4

Lunch No. 1 The Power Burrito “Pack two wholewheat tortillas and top with black beans or ground turkey. Pack a separate bag of tomato, avocado and lettuce. Heat up the tortilla and protein, then add your toppings. It’ll help you stay focused for several hours afterward.”

Lunch No. 2 The Right Sandwich “Stuff a wholemeal pitta with rocket, turkey, avocado and Dijon mustard. Add a fruit salad on the side. This has fibre, carbs, healthy fats and protein, a balance that prevents overeating and gives you energy to offset the afternoon office slump.”

Never feel guilty about that 3pm cup of coffee again You know you want it. The good news? Science says it’s not just fine – it’s good for you

Lunch No. 3 The High-Protein Salad “Just throw two handfuls of salad leaves, a fistful of chickpeas, a few walnuts and a sliced apple into a container, and drizzle with red wine vinegar. This meal will help keep blood sugar levels stable and lower cholesterol.”

Lunch No. 4 Tuna and Crispbreads “Take a can of tuna in water, drain it, add sliced cucumber, celery, tomato and pepper, and eat it on wholegrain crackers. This can fight chronic disease – tuna’s omega 3 fatty acids help lower blood pressure.”

First you feel sluggish, then wildly unproductive and inattentive. Next thing you know, you’re trawling through your ex-girlfriend’s wedding photos on Facebook. We know you’re doing it. “The 2-4pm hours are when Facebook usage skyrockets,” says Dr Ron Friedman. It’s the post-lunch malaise. So, is it good for you to power through with a three o’clock cup of joe? Actually, yes. “Caffeine in the afternoon actually improves cognitive function and increases energy,” says Zanini. But steer clear of energy drinks like Monster or Red Bull, she advises, and stick to black coffee or espresso. The point is to avoid sugar, which would quickly lift you, then have you bonk again. (One caveat: if you’re having trouble sleeping, hold off on that late-afternoon caffeine hit. And check out the column to the right.) Another benefit to getting coffee: ritualisation. Even if it’s decaf, “taking time out to do something relaxing and enjoyable can be beneficial to personal productivity,” says Professor Gregory Freund, head of pathology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. “Caffeine, of course, is a stimulant that improves alertness. But the process may be more important than the ‘drug’ effect.”

Research has shown that a power nap – sleeping for ten to 30 minutes – can boost alertness and mood. Even a doze lasting just six minutes can mean a profound increase in declarative memory performance, according to a study in the Journal Of Sleep Research. But if you want to brave the desk kip, first get your boss on board. “Tell him or her, ‘If I’m giving 110% and I’m taking 15 minutes just to close my eyes, shouldn’t that be more accepted than solitaire?’” says veteran office napper Ronit Rogoszinski, a wealth advisor at Arch Financial Group. Here’s her technique for a proper snooze.

“Never lean forward and bury your face in your arms. And avoid arching your back. It’s better to recline a little. It’s all about getting comfortable and taking pressure off your lower back.”

“If you can raise your feet just a few inches off the ground, it’s ideal. I never put my feet on the desk – I just put them up on a shoebox. That little bit of elevation makes all the difference.”

“When you close your eyes, take long, deep breaths and concentrate on breathing very slowly. The best way I can describe it is to just imagine yourself powering down. If your office is loud, use ear plugs. And cross your arms – you’ll find it’s more comfortable than letting them dangle or sit on the armrests. And it provides a small blanket-like warmth that helps you doze.”

July 2016 | 77

The Bike Commuter Glossary Ready to join the biking masses? Well, there’s an entire culture, with its own protocols, that you need to be aware of. Here’s a primer from Eben Weiss, also known as the irreverent US blogger “Bike Snob NYC” Right Hook “One of the biggest threats to bike commuters is the rightturning motorist [leftturning in the UK]. At junctions, always know that a driver is liable to turn into you without looking, and position yourself accordingly. And remember that the larger the vehicle is, the less likely it is that the driver will see you.” Salmoning “This means riding against the flow of traffic, and it’s verboten in today’s biking culture. Obvious safety issues aside, you should never force other cyclists to play chicken with you. It’s about not being an asshole.” Shoaling “Stopping in front of other riders at a red light. Would you cut in line at the cash machine or squeeze in front of someone to use the urinal? The same rules apply when you’re riding a bike.” Wheel-sucking “The cycling equivalent of tailgaiting. Once you find your legs, you may be tempted to test them against your fellow commuters and get up close behind them. Don’t do it. Respect riders’ personal space, ride easy – hey, it’s not a race – and just hang back, man.”

78 | July 2016

5 easy, effective tips for becoming a healthier, happier, more productive employee Healthy job habits for you, courtesy of Dr Ron Friedman, author of The Best Place To Work: The Art And Science Of Creating An Extraordinary Workplace 1 Create a workplace soundtrack “We often take the noise level in our office for granted, but studies show that sound influences our performance and mood in powerful ways. Free websites like recreate the low hum of a café, which research suggests boosts creativity.” 2 Walk and talk “Walking meetings often spark new ideas by taking you out of the office and exposing you to a different

environment. Go out to a park or café – when you’re in a different environment, you can be a lot more creative, because all of a sudden different inputs are surrounding the ideas you’re discussing.” 3 Protect your best hours “Knowing when you’re at your most productive is the first step to building a better schedule. To find out which hours those are, for a few days chart your energy level on the hour, every hour. Just as you might

write down the number of reps you completed at the gym, take a second to evaluate how you feel on a scale of one to seven, with ‘one’ representing low energy and ‘seven’ representing high energy. “After a day or two, you’ll find a pattern. Figure out the two to three hours when you’re at your best, and block them off on your calendar so you can use that time to do important work. For me, there’s no question: I’m at my best between 9am and noon.”

4 Step outside as often as possible “Studies show that we can replenish our mental resources by going outdoors. When we’re in a natural setting, it’s easier to let our mind wander and recharge.” 5 Rank autonomy over wealth “When deciding between jobs, prioritise the amount of freedom a role provides over the size of the salary. Studies show autonomy is a better predictor of psychological health than income.”

Office Supplies Need more confirmation that cycling to work is good for you? A massive study published in the journal Preventive Medicine found that bike commuting provides more health benefits than even we had imagined, from better concentration to less stress. So, from the iron steed to the best new desk accessories, here’s your shopping list.

For your desk

With the miniwheels of a f o l d a b l e b i ke , you might worry you’ll feel like an elephant on a unicycle. But the Dahon Jifo Uno offers a smooth ride with portability and convenience.

For your commute

Varidesk Single Plus Standing Desk Adjusts easily and – most importantly – doesn’t wobble. (

Trigger Point GRID STK Foam Roller Gets the kinks out of your muscles before your gym session. (

Showers Pass Metro Jacket Keeps you dry when it’s wet and warm when it’s cold. (

Topo Designs Roll-Top Backpack Organizes your papers and has lash tabs for bike lights. (

SKLZ AccuStrap Lets you stretch/massage sore muscles between workouts. (

Cole Haan LunarGrand Chukka Makes working standing up a lot easier. Nike makes the soles. (

Giro Savant Bike Helmet Cools your head so your hair isn’t a soggy mess in the office. (

Rapha Jeans Stay pristine after the rigours of pedalling – and dry fast. (

July 2016 | 79

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07 16


Share your food pics! @mensfitnessuk #MFFuel

Get fit in the kitchen

Hot off the press Forget ice cream and chocolate sauce – upgrade your waffles with healthy ingredients to add a potent new fuel to your diet


e know: when you think of waffles, you think ice cream-drenched Belgian desserts or Little Chef-style roadside café grub – certainly not good nutrition that can help you hold on to your abs. But classifying waffles as just a cheat food or last-resort morning meal is plain unfair. Equip your kitchen with a waffle press and you can make loads of nutrient-dense gourmet dishes that barely resemble the doughy lattices you scoff on holiday. Try these recipes and you’ll make waffles a cornerstone of your diet while looking so good that no-one will be any the wiser.

July 2016 | 83

Fuel | Eat Healthier

Tex-Mex chicken chilli waffles Ingredients (makes 8)

750g chicken mince / 2tsp rapeseed oil / 180g fine cornflour / 1tsp baking powder / 2 large eggs / 350ml low-fat milk / 2tbsp olive oil / 1 can kidney beans in chilli sauce / 350ml low-fat sour cream / 1tsp grated lime zest / Pinch of chilli powder / 2 spring onions, thinly sliced / 50g grated low-fat cheddar cheese

The fitter pizza? A 2013 study from the University of Helsinki reported that vitamin C found in both green peppers and pineapple can reduce exerciseinduced asthma

Words Matthew Kadey, Ben Ince Photography James Ranson Food styling Heather Meldrom/Big Leo Prop styling Stephanie Hanes. Waffle irons provided by Amazon

To make

In a frying pan over medium heat, cook the chicken mince until no longer pink (about five minutes) – use cooking spray or a little oil if needed. In a large bowl, whisk the cornflour and baking powder. In a different bowl, whisk the eggs, milk and olive oil. Add the chicken and kidney beans to the egg mix, then add this to the cornflour bowl and combine into a batter. Grease a waffle iron and heat following the manufacturer’s instructions. Ladle 125ml batter per waffle into the iron and cook until golden brown and set (about five minutes). Keep the waffles warm while you cook the rest of the batter. Mix the sour cream, lime zest and chilli powder in a bowl and serve the waffles topped with the sour cream dressing, spring onions and cheese.


599 41g Calories


58g 24g Carbs


84 | July 2016

667 31g 76g 28g Calories

Hawaiian pizza waffles

pepper, diced / 8 canned pineapple rounds / 800ml passata sauce, warmed



(makes 8)

130g wholewheat flour / 2tsp baking powder / 2tsp dried oregano / 1tsp onion powder / ½tsp salt / 2 large eggs / 750ml milk / 120ml olive oil / 250g diced ham / 50g shredded low-fat mozzarella cheese, plus more for topping / 1 green

In a large bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, oregano, onion powder, and salt. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs, milk and oil, then add this to the flour mixture and combine until everything is moist. Fold in the ham, cheese and green




pepper. Grease a waffle iron with cooking spray and heat. Ladle 125ml batter per waffle into the iron and cook until golden brown and set (about five minutes). Keep the waffles warm while you cook the remaining batter. Place the pineapple rounds on the iron, close lid, and heat until tender and slightly charred (about five minutes). To serve, top each waffle with 100ml warm passata, a pineapple ring and additional shredded cheese.

Smoked salmon waffled panini

Sweet potato sausage waffles Ingredients

Ingredients (makes 2)

50g soft goat’s cheese / 1tbsp prepared horseradish / 1tbsp fresh lemon juice / 4 slices sourdough bread / 85g smoked salmon / 80g roasted red peppers / 15g spinach


In a small bowl, stir together the goat’s cheese, horseradish and lemon juice. Divide this mixture in two, spread each half on a slice of bread and top each with an equal amount of smoked salmon, red peppers and

(makes 8)

spinach. Top with remaining bread slices. Heat waffle iron and cook the sandwiches in it until the bread is crisp (about five minutes).

150g wholemeal or spelt flour / 1½tsp baking powder / ½tsp baking soda / 2tsp garlic powder / 2 large eggs / 185ml low-fat milk / 2tbsp olive oil / 400g puréed sweet potato / 50g grated parmesan cheese / 225g smoked sausage, chopped / 40g dried cranberries


In a large bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and garlic powder. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk and oil. Add the sweet potato and parmesan and mix gently to combine, then add the two mixtures and mix until everything is moist. Fold in the sausage and cranberries. Grease a waffle iron with cooking spray and heat. Ladle 125ml batter for each waffle into the iron and cook until golden brown and set (about five minutes). Keep the waffles warm in the oven while you cook the remaining batter.

516 29g Calories


75g 12g 609 27g 60g 29g Calories






July 2016 | 85

Fuel | Gear

Get juiced

Words Matt Huckle Photography Danny Bird

What’s in your smoothie? You don’t really know unless you make it yourself (which will save you money as well)

The Avance comes with QuickClean technology, designed to help you clean it in under a minute

Yes, bottled smoothies are lovely, but do you really know what goes into them? In some, the sugar content could make a can of Coke blush. And then there’s the price. When a drink made out of a couple of oranges, a mango and a banana costs as much as the rest of your day’s meals put together, something’s not right. The solution? Buy your own juicer, get squeezing and make your own fruity drinks from scratch. The upfront cost might put you off at first, but trust us, you’ll soon claw that back – and more. Factor in the peace of mind of knowing exactly what’s gone into your glass and it’s a no-brainer. Our choice is the Philips Avance Collection juicer. It can make up to 2.5 litres of juice at a time, which is handy if (a) you’re throwing a huge juice party or (b) you’d prefer not to have to fire it up every time you want a slurp. You don’t even have to cut up the fruit – just whack everything in and you’re good to go. Which will leave you plenty of time to work out what to do with all the money you’re saving. Philips Avance Collection £200,

YOUR FIRST (ENTIRELY HOME-MADE) SMOOTHIE Kick off your smoothie making with this fiery fat burner

Ingredients (serves 4)

Juice of 1 orange / ½ a chilli / 1 scoop of whey protein isolate / 400ml of green tea, cold / Handful of kale 86 | July 2016

ORANGES are rich in vitamin C, and studies have shown that people with high levels burn fat more efficiently.

CHILLI contains capsaicin to boost your fat-burning metabolism and help suppress appetite.

WHEY PROTEIN helps build muscle. Because muscle is active tissue, the more you have, the more fat you burn.

GREEN TEA contains the antioxidant ECGC, which causes an increase in fat oxidisation.

KALE is a source of calcium, a mineral that plays a key role in regulating body fat levels.

walk A Higher path We created One Stop® Xtreme, the all-in-one bodybuilding supplement to outperform all of the competition, not just in formulation but also in quality. The combination of EU grass fed whey protein, Creapure® creatine, patented Albion ultra bioavailable minerals, significant use of additional amino acids and patented neutraceuticals means that One Stop® Xtreme is categorically guaranteed to deliver more than the competition, or your money back.

We don’t hold back on the formulation, are you holding back on the right choice?

55 g Protein, 10.3 g BCAAs, 3 g L-leucine, 1.8 g Beta Alanine, 73 g low GI Carbohydrate BLEND per 145 g serving





Fuel | Healthy Snacks

The crisps it’s OK to eat



Not all crisps are deep-fried and laced with additives. Here are the leanest (and tastiest) varieties








£1.50 Folate is your reproductive system’s best friend, and these GMO-free crunchers are full of it. They’re waistline-friendly too – a bag contains just 0.1g of fat, so you’ll be more likely to put your libido o to good use.

£2 If you struggle to enjoy crisps in moderation, it’s time to embrace the parsnip variety. The reason? They’re rich in fibre, which fills you up and reduces snack cravings. Tyrrells also ensures its retains starch, to veg reta reduce ce the amount of oil itt soaks up.

£2 It might be a starchy carb, but sweet potato actually helps to regulate blood sugar – and keep flab at bay – thanks to its high levels of insulin-metabolising adiponectin. Kettle also bakes its chips hips rather frying them rath ra ther er tthan han ha n fr fryi ying ng the the hem m so you avoid the he extra calories. cooking-oil calori co ries.

£1.50 Cooking vegetables destroys vital nutrients, which is why Pret’s crisped kale is dried and seasoned rather than fried or baked, providing pr g maximum antioxidants and flavour fl av – plus a bonus 3g o of welcome musclebuilding buil ilding protein.

Words Sam Razvi Photography Joseph Sinclair Wor

The Protein Works Veggie Super Crisps

88 | July Ju ly 2016 2 01 016 6

Tyrrells Parsnip Crisps

Kettle Sweet Potato Chips

Pret Crisped Kale


Doritos Cool Original

Packing 199 calories into a 40g bag is an achievement in itself. Throw in glucose syrup, high levels of processing, a worryingly nonspecific “cheese powder” and po a variety of flavour va enhancers and en you’ve got plenty of yo reasons to steer clear. re clear ar..

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90 | July 2016

Iced coee, p94

July 2016 | 91


TRY ROASTING AT HOME If you drink coffee all the time, it could be worth roasting your own coffee beans for improved freshness and flavour – but even if it’s a less frequent treat, you can try it without breaking the bank. While commercial roasters are expensive, you don’t need to drop hundreds on specialist gear. “You can use an old popcorn popper,” says Scott Bentley, founder of Caffeine magazine ( “Just don’t put in too many at once – you

Believe it or not, coffee tasting isn’t just a spectrum that goes from “that’s quite nice” to “a bit muddy”. The Speciality Coffee Association of America (SCAA) has a scoring system buyers use to objectively evaluate coffees called “cupping”. Stop giggling. “Coffees achieving a score of 85 or higher, from a maximum possible score of 100, are regarded as ‘speciality’ grade,” says Lynsey Harley, founder of Modern Standard Coffee. “These coffees have no defects and have a very distinct pleasant flavour profile.” Here’s Harley’s no-nonsense guide to cupping.


1. 8.25g of coarsely ground coffee is measured into a specially made shallow cup. 2. 150ml of water heated to 92°C is added, and left for four minutes. 3. A spoon is used to break and remove the “crust”, which provides the first opportunity to sample the coffee’s aroma. 4. After a further six minutes, the cupper begins to taste the coffee. Different attributes are evaluated at intervals as the coffee cools.

You’ve chosen and sourced your favourite coffee, worked out the perfect way to brew it, then made it with the tap water from your kitchen – which makes you pull a face when you drink it. Whichever way you cut it, coffee is about 99% water, so use filtered water and see the difference. A basic Brita is about £10.


40°C Sweetness and cleanliness Sweetness Is the coffee sweet and pleasing? Cleanliness When no defects are found, the cup is clean. And finally, there’s also overall balance. Coffee is greater than the sum of its parts. Flavour, aftertaste, acidity and body all work together to achieve balance. 92 | Month 2015 July 2016

Caffeine magazine is available in speciality coffee shops

70°C Flavour and aftertaste Flavour The coffee’s principal flavour – what are your taste buds telling you? Aftertaste The length of positive flavour qualities after the coffee has been swallowed. 70-60°C Acidity and body Acidity Bright for positive acidity, sour for negative. Positive acidity adds to the coffee’s sweetness. Body Is it heavy like a good Bordeaux, or light and refined like a sauvignon blanc?

need to make sure the beans can move with the hot air.” The beans should be roasted at around 215°C. A light roast will take around six minutes, darker roasts a minute or two longer. If you do use a popper, keep an eye on it – it can catch alight if left too long. Roasting puts quite a strain on a popcorn maker and will almost certainly reduce its lifespan, so pick up a secondhand one on eBay. For goodquality green (unroasted) coffee, visit


A hand grinder will have a dramatic effect on your coffee. “The key is using a burr grinder, which has cutting discs that mill the coffee to a specific size,” says James Hoffmann, founder of Square Mile Coffee Roasters. “The alternative is whirly blades, which will produce a mixture of pieces that are too big (hard to get flavour out of ) and way too small (adding bitterness).” Remember coffee oxidises within minutes of grinding. “If I don’t hear the grinder when I’m waiting in a coffee shop, I walk out,” says Bentley. “That means they’ve pre-ground in advance, so that coffee is going off as you wait, giving you a flat and uninteresting drink.”

De'Longhi KG79 Professional Burr Grinder, £37,


The Hario Syphon Technica not only lets you play at being a mad scientist but it also makes great coffee. The syphoning technique was invented in the 1830s in Berlin and brews coffee in a vacuum, contracting and expanding the air pressure in the bottom bowl. In practice this means you can use water so you don’t risk burning your coffee. The downside? Cleaning it could eat up the rest of your morning.

Hario Syphon Technica 5-cup £100,

| 93


USE IT TO SMASH YOUR PBS We’ve all seen terrifying looking tubs of pre-workout supp with names like Workout Annihilator and Furious Gains, and these typically use caffeine to fire you up. They’re basically middlemen that you can cut out by drinking a shot of espresso before you train. Caffeine does more than just give you a shortlived buzz though. A study published in the British Journal Of Sports Science showed that after drinking just 3g of coffee, subjects ran 1,500m 4.2sec faster than those who were given decaff. It’ll help you deal with the pain in your muscles when you’re gurning your way through those last few reps too. Research at Illinois University found that caffeine actually reduces the perception of pain during exercise. The study suggested that it affects the adenosine neuromodulatory system (the bit of your brain which deals with pain) and blocks it from working fully. Even if you’re not in the gym coffee has serious benefits. There’s evidence for it reducing the risk of diabetes, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, plus a tenyear study in California found that the risk of suicide decreased by 13% for every additional cup of coffee consumed per day.

94 | July 2016

“Make sure you’re buying coffee with the date of roasting clearly displayed – find something under six weeks,” says Hoffmann. “Secondly, you want to look for something fairly traceable: if it doesn’t come from a single estate or distinct collective of farmers, it isn’t the best you could be buying. Where the coffee is grown has a big impact on the flavour, so paying attention to what you like will definitely help with making decisions in the future.” And if you’re serious, there’s no more discounted tubs of freeze-dried from the pound shop. po op “As a rule of thumb I suggest paying £6-15 for a bag of coffee beans at your local independent inde depe pendent coffee shop,” says ys Bentley. Alternatively, Harley’s Modern Standard Standa dard rd Coffee is now available le at Sainsbury’s.

Colombia/Buena Vista Astrid Medina, £8 Tasting notes: caramel, gooseberry, raspberry

Rwanda/Gashonga, £6 Tasting notes: plums, peaches, milk chocolate

Momentum Espresso Blend, £5.50 Tasting notes: milk chocolate, caramel, redcurrant


Frappuccinos and the like have a bad reputation for being sugary (and, let’s face it, girly) – but cold brew is a proper drink that’s perfect for sunny days, assuming we ever have any. Sandows in London soaks coffee beans in cold water overnight, making for a smooth flavour without any bitterness or acidity.



CHEMEX “Use a Chemex if you favour lighter coffees,” says Harley. “Its ‘pourover’ percolation method [where you moisten the coffee in the neck of the flask, then pour in the required amount of hot water] allows for a clean finish, and a delicate coffee can really shine through.”

PURE SOPHISTICATION: THE ESPRESSO MARTINI If you love coffee, there’s no need to wait for the morning after. Try an espresso martini – invented in the 1980s by Dick Bradsell – on a night out, and there could be an extra benefit: a Southampton University meta-study linked coffee with lower incidence of alcohol-related liver damage. Ingredients 50ml vodka 35ml coffee liqueur 1 shot espresso Ice Coffee beans (to garnish)

Chemex 6-Cup £40, modernstandard

To make Pour the vodka, coffee and espresso into a cocktail shaker along with ice. Shake well and pour into a cocktail glass through a sieve and garnish with coffee beans.



How to spot them? Anyone who goes on about a good cup of coffee featuring 1,200 tasting notes where a vintage Merlot has 400 is a pretty good bet. But you don’t have to be at the standard of an industry pro to enjoy fine coffee. “When you taste coffee all the time, you’re drawn to coffees that are processed differently,” says Harley. The main thing is to draw a distinction between speciality and the rest. “You’ll definitely notice the difference between coffees that score over 85 points on the SCAA cupping guides and the ‘commodity coffee’ you’ll find in high street chains. However, the difference between a coffee scoring 91 and 93 is small.” Once you’ve found a speciality coffee you like, stick with it.

July 2016 | 95


13 You don’t have to be a New York cop to enjoy this pairing (although we’re sure you’d look good in the uniform). Just do away with the deep-fried, oilsoaked versions and bake them instead. You’ll get a light, fluffy dough that’s not quite as heavy on your heart. Ingredients 150g plain white flour 1tsp baking powder ½tsp salt 110g unrefined golden caster sugar 120ml whole milk 2 eggs 20g unsalted butter 1½tsp vanilla bean paste To make Preheat your oven to 140°C/ gas mark 3. Mix the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a bowl. In a separate bowl whisk together he eggs, melted butter, vanilla paste and milk. Pour the mixture into the flour, and mix to make a batter. Spoon the mixture into a doughnut baking tin, filling each compartment no more than threequarters of the way to the top as they’ll rise during cooking. Cook for eight minutes, and allow to cool before eating.


KALITA WAVE “My favourite brew method,” says Bentley. It’s a twist on the pour-over method – unlike the conical bottom of a Chemex, the Wave has a flat bottom with three holes. “It’s an easy option for beginners and produces a clean cup of coffee.” Kalita Wave £25,

14 STORE IT PROPERLY Don’t spend money on specialist coffee beans then store them in the fridge – the cold air will dry them out and ruin the taste. The National Coffee Association USA recommends storing your coffee at room temperature in an opaque, air-tight container. Avoid clear display jars as well because the light will compromise quality of the beans.



Once you go beyond instant, a remarkable amount of science goes into every cup of Joe. You might be the sort who like to know what’s chemically happening inside your cup to make it taste the way it does, or perhaps you just need the facts to argue with someone who tells you it’s OK to boil your water in the microwave. (It isn’t.) Either way How To Make Coffee: The Science Behind The Bean will be your new bible. It lays out the reasons behind everything from why water has to be a certain temperature and what method works best with which grind to how roast affects taste and what happens when you add milk. It’s all written for the coffee lover, not the scientist – oh, and it looks gorgeous too.



An AeroPress uses pressure to brew coffee. “By forcing it through the filter paper the percentage of dissolved solids in your cup is higher, creating a drink with more body to it,” says Harley. But best of all, it’s quick and easy.

AeroPress £26.99,

July 2016 | 97

Fuel | Eating Out

Nutritionist Drew Price investigates the state of food on high street Britain to find out what we’re actually eating. This issue…

Just how bad is my chicken bucket?

Fried chicken is viewed differently around the world. In Japan, thanks to a 1970s marketing campaign, KFC is a popular Christmas meal. In the southern US, where the dish as we know it originates, it’s seen as a treat, much as we’d look at a roast dinner. Here in Britain though, like so many takeaways, it’s a late-night post-pub grease-fest. But hey – it’s still chicken. It must be better for you than other fast-food options, right? Yes, chicken is a great source of lean, high-quality protein and essential micronutrients such as B3, B6 and selenium. However, you don’t always know where that meat has come from. Big chains exercise more control over their suppliers – KFC’s on-the-bone ‘original recipe’ chicken is from the UK and meets Red Tractor standards, meaning it’s much the same quality as what you buy from the supermarket. The smaller chains, though, depend on various industry suppliers whose standards differ. More problems come when you start cooking the chicken. The salt levels in some coatings are high, though the bigger chains have made an effort to reduce this, and deep frying obviously adds calories from fat. The cheap and oxidised oils many outlets use are highly inflammatory and bad news for health. But there are ways to make your chicken healthier.

How to do fried chicken right

If you’re looking for a decent trade-off between protein and calories, stick to chicken pieces. Ask for “keel” when you order and check before you pay: this is the prize piece, the top half of both breasts, and it provides about 33g of protein per

Healthy hen cabin Here’s how to put together a KFC meal that won’t derail your diet

98 | July 2016

Find a trustworthy chicken shop and you’re golden portion – roughly the same as the rib section, but with 30% less calories and just over half the fat. Because cooking releases moisture as steam into the batter, the meat can’t absorb the fat, so if you lose the coating then what you’re left with is as lean as if you’d grilled it at home. The best advice is to find a chicken place that you know serves reliably well-cooked, well-sourced food. This can vary, even within the same chain. I find that KFC does fairly uniform, moist meat with a thin coating (no bad thing), but the difference between two Dixy shops I tried in north London was marked. In

Keel chicken portions High in protein, low in fat.


A big serving is 245 calories with 10% of the fat of fries, plus a hit of fibre.

one, the chicken was dry and tasteless, with a thick, dry and bland coating. The other served me the mother of all chicken burgers consisting of two juicy breasts that had locked together in the fryer. The best I’ve had was at Joe’s in Covent Garden: suddenly I could understand why Southerners love their chicken. The batter was crunchy, light, spicy and zesty, while the chicken itself was soft and tender and tasted like chicken, but somehow more so – and certainly without that hint of gaminess that makes you wonder if you should call in sick for tomorrow right then and there.

Corn cobbette

A mere 85 calories, very little fat and zero salt.


Even “regular” fries have 345 calories and 15g fat. You don’t need them.

Fuel | Drink This

Thai chilli and cucumber lemonade Ingredients (makes 6)

500ml lemon juice / agave syrup, to taste / ½ small Thai chilli / 1.5 litres cold water / 1-2 cucumbers, sliced / 500ml vodka

To make

Words Brian Good Photography Levi Brown Drink styling Angela Campos/Stockland Martel

Fire water Adding some fresh chilli to your next cocktail won’t just make it taste better – it also makes it healthier and more refreshing


rom spicy salsas in Mexico to jerk chicken in the Caribbean and curries in India, there’s a reason why people in the hottest climates are also drawn to fiery foods. When that heat crosses your lips, it raises your body temperature and makes you sweat, improving circulation and helping you cope better with the weather around you. The same is true – believe it or not – with cocktails. A spicy drink is actually more refreshing than an icy one when sipped slowly on a hot afternoon. Plus, by swapping in low-calorie chilli peppers to replace fruit juice or mixers, you also cut back on the sugars in your drink significantly. So raise a fiery glass to your health this summer.

100 | July 2016

Add the lemon juice, agave, Thai chilli, water and all but six of the cucumber slices to a blender and process till smooth. Strain. Stir the ingredients in a pitcher filled with ice. Serve, adding a cucumber slice to each finished cocktail.



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Your blueprint for success

The Experiment

Sink or swim

Can an aquatically challenged MF writer learn triathlonstandard front crawl in just four weeks? Ben Ince tries Total Immersion Photography Tom Miles

July 2016 | 105

Trainer | The Experiment

Learning to control your body position in the water is surprisingly hard


Swimming, but not as you know it. Originally developed in the 1970s, and long considered endurance sports’ best-kept secret, Total Immersion (TI) is making an impact today with a new generation of triathletes adopting the technique. TI flips the traditional approach to teaching front crawl on its head, providing serious speed and efficiency gains in short timeframes by encouraging swimmers to work with the water, rather than against it. “Most people learn to swim when they’re at school – where the emphasis is on not drowning rather than developing an efficient stroke – and carry the bad habits they pick up into adult life,” says TI coach Sam Williams of Swim Studio London ( “This generally leads to a wild, thrashing style born of survival instinct, all windmilling arms and aggressive leg kicking. As a result, only 4% of adult swimmers can manage 400m or further continuously, because their stroke isn’t sustainable.” This is my problem in a nutshell. I can doggy-paddle all day, and I’ve even managed to bob my way through 106 | July 2016

a couple of sprint-distance triathlons using a granny-like variety of breast stroke, but when it comes to front crawl my technique is so poor that doing a few lengths at the local pool leaves me utterly gassed, watching ruefully from the shallow end as old ladies and armbandclad children cruise effortlessly past me. Could TI really redress a lifetime of terrible freestyle form in a few weeks?


“Traditional swimming is based around power,” says Williams. “You’re kicking and pulling your way through the water, using roughly 80% of your energy expenditure and oxygen consumption just to stay afloat and counteract the fact that you’re not very streamlined and extremely unbalanced. TI, on the

other hand, is an exercise in control. Your body is naturally unstable in the water, so we slow everything down to find the point where you’re balanced. For example, people tend to look forward rather than down when they’re swimming, which causes their legs to sink.” Once a TI coach has identified and corrected these kinds of postural issues and you’re comfortable in a balanced position, they can teach you new movement patterns. “These help keep you streamlined – such as spearing your left hand forward as you kick your right foot – and develop an efficient stroke,” Williams explains. “Once you’ve got this established as a base, you can then apply power purely for the purpose of propelling yourself forward faster.”

The benefits extend beyond performance, too. “Traditional front crawl leaves you far more susceptible to injury, as you’ll often end up internally rotating your shoulder joint, and straining your neck and back,” says Williams. “TI develops a relaxed stroke that helps to extend the spine and improve joint mobility, making it an ideal, full-body, low-impact aerobic activity that’s sustainable into later life.”


Less than five minutes into my first session, Williams diagnosed a multitude of issues that have been holding me back, including an over-aggressive kick, a lack of inter-limb co-ordination and a jerky, panicked breathing style. The first

thing I needed to do was learn to relax in the water, which involved pushing off very gently from the side of the pool and simply floating forward, with my arms extended and face down. It felt odd – and more than a little ridiculous – for the first few sessions, but I rapidly became far more aware of my body position in the water, and was able to adjust accordingly so that my legs rose to the surface rather than sinking immediately as before. Over the weeks that followed, Williams began rebuilding my stroke one element at a time. Once I was comfortable maintaining a balanced floating position, he showed me how to replace my previously wild kicking style with a gentle, controlled flutter that I could actually sustain for minutes at

Coach Sam Williams analyses the elements of Ben’s stroke

Stroke of genius How exactly does TI’s approach leave other swimming lessons in its wake?




The traditional approach to swimming uses power as a base, with far less emphasis on streamlining and balance

TI flips that pyramid over, teaching you to control your body in the water first, only adding power once that’s been mastered




July 2016 | 107

Trainer | The Experiment

You learn to generate power through efficient technique

“AfterfourweeksofTI, mymaxdistancefrontcrawl jumpedfrom50mto400m” a time without exhausting my legs. This reduced range of motion also ensured that my overall body position remained far more streamlined in the water. The next step was to generate efficient power. Previously I’d been trying to pull myself through the water, which required constant, energy-sapping tension in my hands and arms. Williams instead taught me to propel myself forward by rotating my torso and hips in unison, using a piston-like motion with my arms and hands relaxed throughout. And although it took weeks of practice to reach a point where I could sustain it, the difference during the short bursts when it did click was immediate and marked.


After just over four weeks of TI, my max distance front crawl jumped from an 108 | July 2016

utterly exhausting 50m to a manageable (if far from pretty) 400m – an 800% increase. What’s more, the logical, progressive nature of the methodology meant that even if I couldn’t maintain every element of my newly developed stroke simultaneously – usually due to a lack of concentration – I was always aware of what had started to slip and when, ensuring that I was able to focus on and attempt to correct it on the next length. And although it did require a reasonable time commitment of two to three 20-minute sessions a week on top of my weekly hour-long lessons with Williams, the relaxed stroke style and low-impact nature of swimming in general meant that it didn’t negatively impact or compromise my regular gym workouts or my performance on the five-a-side pitch. If anything, hitting the pool after a tough weights

session actually worked as an excellent mobility-based warm-down. And at the end of the day, picking up a legit life skill that will still be physically viable when my joints become too knackered for anything else is more than worth a month of dedicated training. Next stop: using it to smash my doggy-paddle triathlon PB.

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The instability of a TRX gives your core a serious test

Stay lean on the road Never let travel disruption ruin your fat loss ambitions

When you’re travelling, whether for work or leisure, you can find yourself surrounded by confusion. Home comforts are missed, your passport plays hide and seek, and exercise routines get trampled – which means your levels of lean muscle can suffer. But there is a solution to stay trim on the go: you can harness this chaos, using a TRX and a deck of cards. Whenever you have a spare 20 minutes, just hook the suspension trainer over your hotel door and let the cards shape your workout. 110 | July 2016


Sam Rider, fitness editor

My travel fitness essentials 1. A TRX – for this workout. 2. Running shoes – on foot is the best way to explore a new city and burn fat while doing it. 3. Resistance bands – for post-flight mobility and a pre-pool muscle pump.

Trainer | Fat Loss


DIRECTIONS Set a timer for 20 minutes. Shuffle the deck, then turn over the top card. Match the suit to the move here. The number is how many reps you need to do between one and 14 (ace can be high or low depending how hard you’ve been hitting the in-flight G&Ts). Keep going until you finish the deck or, more likely, run out of time. Rest as needed. The joker means you do all the moves to failure, then rest for 60 seconds.


Hearts Jump squat Hold the TRX handles with straight arms and lean back. Lower into a squat, keeping your knees wide apart, then drive up powerfully and jump.



Spades Inverted row

Diamonds Chest press

Grasp the handles so your palms face down and lean back, arms and body straight. Pull your body up to your hands. Pause at the top, then lower.

With straight arms, hold the handles with the straps over your shoulders. Bend your arms to bring your hands to your chest. Press back up.



Clubs Pike Put your feet through the handles and get into the top of a press-up position with straight arms. Contract your core to bring your feet towards you and raise your hips.


Letting chance take over means no workout will ever be the same. “This method of muscle confusion, where you frequently vary the moves and rep ranges, makes sure this never becomes easy and your muscles get comfortable,” explains Bradley Simmonds, the PT and fitness model demonstrating this circuit. Staying out of your comfort zone will keep your heart rate high to churn through calories and keep your body fat levels low. And if nothing else, you’ll be able to pass the time with solitaire if your flight ever gets delayed. July 2016 | 111

Words Sam Rider Photography Danny Bird Model Bradley Simmonds (


5 Trainer | The List

I t d o e s n ’ t t a ke a training revolution to win the arms race

small tweaks for big arms

Two tickets for this summer’s gun show? Yes please


Curl to your shoulder

Words Sam Rider, Joe Rowland Photography iStock

Four-time Mr Universe, sometime Governator and noodle-armterminator Arnold Schwarzenegger has always been a stickler for good form. With the biceps curl, that means flexing and extending fully at the top and bottom. Any lateral movement away from the line between your hand and shoulder is a cardinal sin – if you move your hand in or out a fraction, you’ll ease the tension on your biceps and stay closer to the noodle zone. And squeeze at the top.


Go heavier than you can lift

You can do this and still follow the sound advice to “leave your ego at the door” – the key is to cheat the concentric (lifting) part of a lift and then focus on the eccentric (lowering) phase. A study at the University of Florida found that neglecting the eccentric phase could cut your gains in half. So, instead, try overloading it. On your final set pick a weight you’d struggle to lift fully, get help hefting it to the top of the move from a spotter, then dig in and lower the weight as slowly as you can. Take a breath and repeat, five times minimum.

112 | July 2016


Shoot for a ton

Three-time America’s Strongest Man victor Derek Poundstone was renowned for his pain-tolerance training. He’d do a century of curls with just the 20kg bar, learning to handle the searing lactate in his biceps so he could work harder with other lifts while also sparking a huge surge of hypertrophy for his atlas stone-wielding arms. What can you do? Pick a weight that forces you to fail at 60 reps. Repeat weekly until you hit the 100kg jackpot, then add 2kg and repeat.


Press pause for muscle

Fly through your reps and you’re missing out on 5% more muscle through sheer haste, according to a study in the Journal Of Applied Physiology. To recruit your maximum amount of motor units, pause in the middle of a curl or triceps pull-down at the point of maximum tension for as long as you can handle. Best save it for the final rep.


Go large, then little

Pre-exhaust your bis and tris with big-boy moves first. That means using multi-joint compound lifts like chin-ups and bench presses to pre-fatigue

your arms before immediately following up with lighter single-joint lifts like curls and skullcrushers. It’s a method advocated by Matt Bryzcki, co-ordinator of recreational fitness and wellness programming at Princeton University. Brains plus brawn equals gains.

Win the arms race

Inflate your arms with fitness model and PT Deke Walker’s “feeder workout”

1A HAMMER CURL x 60 1B SKULLCRUSHER x 100 Walker says “Before bed, I follow up the workout I did in the day with a final high-volume blast. Sitting on the end of my bed holding very light dumbbells I get through these reps as fast as I can, switching when I hit failure. Sleeping straight after gives them time to grow back bigger.”

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I drink it to enhance performance!


‘I aim to be the best athlete I can possibly be and preparation is key! It’s great to have Brilliant Raccoon to help me take my training to the next level.’

Photography: Alex Wightman

Jordan Turner Boxer, Personal Trainer & all round athlete @Jordan_Turner1



Whether you’re a seasoned Lycra convert or just out of training wheels, these are the ten essential questions that’ll get you on your bike

Photography iStock

Words Joshua Cunningham

July 201^ | 115




Your reasons are (probably) going to shift over time. Plenty of men start cycling as a way to save money on their commute and to get a bit more exercise, only to end up spending their weekends in farflung coffee houses, debating the merits of Shimano gearsets over Campagnolo. But if all you’re after for now is fitness, then the benefits are myriad. Norwegian cyclist Oskar Svendsen has posted the highest ever VO2 max score – the maximum volume of oxygen your body can use, the truest test of fitness – with a quite ridiculous 97.5 ml/kg/min. If muscle is what motivates you, Google Robert Forstermann (or his thighs) to find out what cycling can do for your quads.


DOES MY BODY TYPE AFFECT WHAT I CAN DO ON A BIKE? The way that you use your physical makeup will define your prowess as a cyclist. If you’re an ectomorph and find it hard to put on weight – whether that’s muscle or fat – then you’re an ideal climber, where power-to-weight ratios are key and (thanks to gravity) less weight equals more speed. Endomorphs might want to take advantage of the weight that they can find hard to shift by turning it into powerful turns of speed, either in sprinting or short-distance time trials. Because the bike gives total body support, these intense efforts rarely result in joint stresses and muscle pain.

116 | July 2016

T h e b i ke s u p p o r t s your weight, taking the strain from your joints



HOW MUCH SHOULD I SPEND ON MY BIKE? Every cyclist has a different answer to this, depending on what sort of riding they’re doing and how deep their pockets are, but there are three main options. There’s the “bike to do the job” that’s suitable for weekend rides and commuting, has an alloy frame and entrylevel components, and costs around £400. For

something a little more special, with a carbon frame and race-worthy components, expect to pay £1,000-£1,300. Then there’s the Ferrari and McLaren club, which have top-of-the-range everything, are better than the bikes the pros ride and can cost up to £10,000. Perhaps that’ll have to wait for the midlife crisis.


WILL A HE HELMET SAVE MY LIFE? L Obviously if you wipe out ha hard and smash be better your head, you’re going to b off if you’re wearing a helmet than not. medallist and However, Olympic gold meda Boardman thinks cycling activist Chris Boardma it’s the cycling infrastructure at large – basically, the roads and cycle lanes – that makes the most difference to safety, noting that the Dutch have the lowest rates of cycling head injuries, injuries despite only helmets. Crucially, 0.8% of them wearing helme all helmets have to pass the same safety s standards, so forking out more mo will result in better-looking and more a aerodynamic headgear, but not necessarily necessaril safer.


Try to sound like a bike rider – here’s your starter vocab


Collective noun for gears and brakes


Rear gears

Chainrings / chainset Front gears

Derailleur / mech

Mechanism that changes gear

Deep sections

Wheels that have a deep rim


Pedalling speed (revs per minute). Pros average 90 rpm in a race

Functional threshold power (FTP)

Number of watts you can produce for an hour. To win the Tour de France, you’ll need to be able to produce six watts per kilo of bodyweight


A group of riders (a“peloton” in a race scenario)

Through and off

When a group of riders take turns to ride in the wind


Water bottle

Bonk / knock

Running out of energy due to not eating enough

Brew stop

A l l b i ke h e l m e t s – regardless of cost – meet the same basic safety standards

A café stop on a long ride. Flat white? Yes. Grande quad non-fat nowhip mocha? On your bike

July 2016 | 117




IS THE EXERCISE BIKE DEAD TO ME NOW? Exercise bikes are OK for a warm-up. Wattbikes, which offer a wider variety of feedback on your performance, are better – but you can get a proper session in at home by simply attaching an indoor turbo trainer to your rear wheel. The Elite Magnetic is your best entry-level option, at £65.

In essence, no. Being highly trained, the pros are able to do extensive hours in the saddle on minimal food while training – sometimes with no carbs. In 2012, when he won the Tour de France, Bradley Wiggins said he would have days of only eating fruit, with a bit of skimmed milk for protein, and could lose up to half a kilo a day doing so. According to Team Sky chef Henrik Orre, this isn’t viable for most. “If you want to stay healthy you should have some carbs as well as protein – for example, porridge and an omelette for breakfast. For long rides, try porridge with nuts – these will add fats, too. You could have soft muesli, but it’s better to have something that’s cooked because your stomach will digest it much better.”


Endurance and fat loss

Warm up for ten minutes with a high cadence, to the point where you’re breathing heavily, then shift up a few gears while maintaining the same cadence (and therefore increasing effort). After two minutes, drop back down the gears and rest for the same time, then do the same again for five-, ten-, five- and finally twominute intervals.

Power and muscle

Follow the same pattern as above but drop the cadence and increase the resistance. The same formula can be used for the road.

Max anaerobic efforts

The most painful kind. You can’t beat the tried and tested method of full-effort hill reps for effectiveness, but to mimic it on a turbo trainer max out the resistance and go full out for 30 seconds, then rest for 30 seconds. Repeat five or ten times.

118 | July 2016

Porridge + assorted nuts = perfect fuel for a long ride

For racing, even the pros need their carbs – usually around 70-75g of them every 30 minutes, which they get through rice tarts, sports bars and carb drinks. It’s a good idea to follow that formula, as well as keeping on top of your postride nutrition. “Post-ride, you want to have a meal that’s low in fat, with a moderate level of carbs and high in protein... like my spicy chicken casserole with celeriac and mango,” says Orre. Oh, to have a professional chef cook your post-workout dinner, eh? But the message is clear: carbs, protein and some healthy fats before riding, fastdigesting carbs for on-the-bike fuel, and a carb-protein mix for recovery. Orre’s cookbook Velochef is available at


Just being skinny isn’t enough – it’s all about the powerto-weight ration



b Just because Tour de France champ Chris Froo Froome looks like he could do with an intrav intravenous drip of protein shake doesn’t mean you have to. Being that skinny while also rretaining optimal muscle mass is a task that his h Team Sky nutritionists spend a lot time and money on, and to replicate of tim would be unadvisable for most of us. it wou cycling speed comes down But because be power-to-weight ratios, as long as you to pow both muscle and power can increase in output with positive correlation, bulk outp isn’t bad. A lot of training for the pros gym-based, with bench presses and is gym deadlifts forming important sessions. dead




It depends quite how serious you are. For the pros, shaved legs are more hygienic for massage and when treating crash-inflicted abrasions. But it’s still 90% a style thing.

Whil riding a bike to work can give you While a pret pretty decent endorphin boost, it can’t live u up to the buzz of the open road. Rout Routes like the US’s Pacific Coast Highway or the Himalayan Karakoram Highway are what riding dreams are made of, but the To Tour de France climbs in the Alps and the th Spanish island of Majorca (a tra training mecca for pros) are more attain attainable, either alone or with the help of cycle holiday operators such as vel If that’s still a stretch, clear your weekend and discover a dome domestic gem: the Scottish Highlands.

July 2016 | 119

Trainer | DIY Workout

Step up your fat loss

Burn fat and fire up your fast-twitch fibres with park-step plyometrics


he onset of summer means two things. First, it’s time to swap getting a sweat on indoors for soaking up the sun’s vitamin D-rich rays outdoors. And second, it’s time to finally reveal that set of rippling abs you’ve been honing all winter. And if you’re not quite there yet in the six-pack department, this highintensity park drill – devised by MF’s DIY workout specialist Andrew Tracey – will help you get there. Find a clear set of steps and take flight.

122 | July 2016



Right leg bound


Start by hopping up the stairs with one leg, then running back down and doing five pike pressups. Then hop up the stairs with the other leg, run down and do five archer press-ups on each arm. Repeat this for five rounds, resting one minute between each. Fatigue may be setting in, but move on to the final two moves, where you leap up the steps in as few jumps as possible, run down and do 15 decline press-ups, for five rounds in total. Rest 30 seconds between rounds.

On one leg, hop onto each step, focusing on maintaining your balance. Start out jumping on each step, then skip steps if you can generate enough power.


Pike press-up

With your feet raised and hands at the bottom of the steps so your body forms an L-shape, bend your arms to lower your head just off the floor, then drive back up.


Left leg bound

Switch legs and hop up the steps, using your arms for balance and to generate momentum.


Archer press-up

This is a regression from a one-arm press-up. Place one hand with your arm straight on the bottom step and drive up with the other arm. Do five each side.


Broad jump

Lower into a quarter squat, then jump up powerfully onto the furthest step you can reach. Repeat, aiming to jump up the steps in as few leaps as possible.


Decline press-up

Do a press-up with your feet raised, hands at the bottom of the steps and body in a straight line. Increase the decline to make it harder. July 2016 | 123

Words Sam Rider Illustrations Sudden Impact Photography Chris Parkes Model Andrew Tracey

This workout uses a training method developed by American physiology expert Arthur H Steinhaus in the 1940s known as peripheral heart action (PHA). Tracey says that “when done right, PHA is disgusting”, but it carries huge cardio and fat-burning potential. You alternate between lower-body and upper-body moves so your heart works overtime redirecting blood to your extremities rather than focusing on one muscle group at a time.

Trainer | Expert Advice


Shift 4% fat in 7 days How S&C coach Ruben Tabares can get you in shape fast with light weights and kale


uben Tabares has followed a winding path to become resident trainer at the plush Mandarin Oriental Gym in London’s Hyde Park. He attended the Royal Ballet School but left for a sporting career, winning the 400m hurdles for GB in the European Junior Championships, then he was David Haye’s coach and nutritionist when the boxer felled Nikolay Valuev to become world heavyweight champ – and he’s also been PT to the likes of rapper and mogul P Diddy, Hollywood actor Mickey Rourke and MOBO winner Tinie Tempah. He’s packed a wealth of proven nutrition

124 | July 2016

knowledge and training tactics into his 37 years, and here he distills his five key philosophies that’ll make the difference to your fitness.


Nutrition is number one

“This is your first fix,” says Tabares. “Drink more water, consume more chlorophyll (from green veg) to alkalise your body and eat for your blood type. That means less pork and more fish for type A, less chicken and more red meat for type B. When I first worked with Haye he was struggling with cramp but switching from processed supplements to natural sources cured him overnight. Small tweaks to your diet can help you shift 4% body fat in

just a week. Whatever you do, make it fun. Can’t stand kale? I blend it with frozen berries and almond milk and serve it as ice cream to my kids.”


Don’t get fanatical about food

“All diets from vegan and Paleo to raw food and fasting are valid but they do have flaws. You miss crucial brain-healthy animal fat on a vegan diet, for example. Read the science, trust your experience, and adapt if your health is jeopardised.”


Earn your HIIT

“I’m a longevity expert. When I start training someone I put them through a process called ‘adaptation’ to condition their tendons, ligaments and joints using very light weights and high reps. That’ll last two months, then it’s strength training,

then strength endurance and power work. Only then will I unleash power endurance, aka HIIT, on them. If you dive straight into it you’ll get hurt.”


The world needs more versaclimbers

“They only take up one square metre but they’re the ultimate cardio kit. If you find one, do this challenge: record how many feet you can climb in 60 seconds. Two hundred is fit, 250 is fit for an athlete, 300+ is elite.”


The deadlift is king

“A strong posterior chain – hamstrings, glutes and back – makes everything easier, including HIIT. Deadlift every week. Never go above five reps. Build up to your lifting weight slowly, stay there for three to five sets. Rest. Recover.”



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Trainer | Supplements

Check your oils Healthy oils are on the rise. Which do you need? Here’s the latest science







WHAT? Support your heart, brain and nervous system with a dose of omega 3 fatty acids packaged in large capsule form.

WHAT? Fatty acids derived from small oceanic crustaceans. The antioxidant astaxanthin gives it a bright red pigment.

WHAT? A highly saturated oil made from mediumchain triglycerides (MCTs). Also used in cosmetics and cooking.

WHAT? From the liver of cod. Hence the name. It’s high in omega 3s and a source of vitamin A and D.

WHAT? Transparent yellow capsules containing the active compounds allicin and selenium, the amino acid arginine and phytochemical plant compounds called flavonoids.

WHAT? Oil from the hemp plant – part of the cannabis genus, but free of its psychoactive component, THC. Also used in cosmetics.

PROS Using supplements can cut the risk of diabetes and some forms of cancer. Fish oil resists decomposition better than other omega 3 oils. CONS Can cause fishy burps, but these can be avoided if capsules are frozen first or taken with food. USE If the only fish you eat comes in batter. Look for “pharmaceutical grade” variety.

PROS It’s more easily absorbed than fish oil, doesn’t come with windy side effects, and may be more cardio-protective. Studies suggest it can help burn fat and reduce arthritic pain. CONS Krill can decompose faster than fish oils, potentially reducing its effect. USE Instead of fish oil, around 1-3g daily.

PROS Replacing the milk in your coffee with coconut oil and its MCTs can increase fat loss. It can also preserve muscle when you’re eating to burn fat. CONS Musclepreserving effect is less effective if you’re already lean. USE To aid weight loss. Take a daily dose of 7.7-15g and use in cooking, provided it’s kept below its smoke point of 175°C.

PROS The vitamin content fortifies the immune system and helps healthy skin, bones and muscle. It’s also effective at lowering blood pressure and triglycerides. CONS Benefits for reducing osteoarthritis are unproven and it often has a fishy aftertaste. USE If you lack regular exposure to vitamin D from the sun, take 20-30ml per day with food.

PROS Supports heart health and immunity, and lowers high blood pressure and cholesterol. May help prevent a variety of cancers.

PROS Contains a perfectly balanced 3:1 ratio of omega 6 to omega 3 fatty acids. Unlike fish oils, it has highquality protein.

CONS Can cause allergic reaction, bad breath or body odours.

CONS Can affect the anticoagulant properties of blood – not recommended if you have a bloodclotting deficiency.

USE As a dietary supplement if you are raw garlicaverse (but not allergic).

USE Have 1-2tbsp a day in salad dressing – or try as a post-shower moisturiser.

July 2016 | 127



Body Work

No weights, big muscles Never wait for the squat rack again – use your bodyweight to grow

To convert your bodyweight into muscle-building currency you need to get creative. This plan from bodyweighttraining master Sean Bartram, who helps the Indianapolis Colts cheerleaders develop show-stopping gymnastic power, does just that. “Think of your body as an empty barbell,” he says. “Changing the pace you move it with, holding awkward positions, adding instability and shaking up classic moves you’ve done all your life serve as the 20kg weight plates you load it up with.” The result will be increased body awareness, fortified connective tissue and increased hypertrophy from press-ups and planks. You’ll get big, strong and powerful without ever stepping onto the weights room floor – or into a fight with the guy hogging the weight belt.

Trainer | Body Work

Sean Bartram is the author of Bodyweight Workouts For Men, the owner of Core Pilates and Fitness in the US, and has trained athletes from sports as diverse as IndyCar and American football. He is the official trainer to the Indianapolis Colts cheerleaders.


Bartram’s athletes – especially cheerleaders – must be able to throw their bodyweight around with ease, but not every exercise is done at high tempo. This plan slows the pace down with pauses, increased range of motion, decreased stability and variations on classic moves to keep your muscles challenged. The result will be functional muscle you never thought you’d own.


There are three full-body workouts to spread across the week. The first four moves each day use timed reps called EMOMs or slow tempos that force you to do high reps and keep the muscles under tension. The last two in each workout will spike your heart rate to keep you burning calories. 130 | July 2016

Workout 1 Range and tempo


Set a timer for ten minutes. Do 15 reps at the start of each minute, and rest for the remainder of each minute. This keeps ep yo your heart rate high gh for more fat loss


Shake up the pace to amplify your muscles


TIME 10MIN EMOM REPS 15 Hold a towel overhead with your arms straight and keep it taut. This will force you to keep your chest up and improve your form. Bend your legs to lower slowly, keeping your knees wide apart, until your hamstrings touch your calves. Then drive back up slowly.


SETS 5 TIME 60SEC REPS 60SEC Think of this as a lunge with your foot elevated for an extra stability challenge. Put one foot, laces down, on a bench behind you and the other in front. Bend your front leg to lower your body, then drive back up. Keep your body upright throughout and your front knee in line with your toes.



Vary the tempo with each set of these split squats so your muscles are under load for long muscle-building spells. Below is how it breaks down. The first number is the seconds the lowering part should take, then how long you pause for, then how long you take to drive up. Minute 1 Minute 2 Minute 3 Minute 4 Minute 5


311 131 113 202 Max isolation (hold the deepest position for the whole minute)


The two-second pause removes any rebounding effect to help you build greater strength in the deep squat position

SETS 3 REPS 15 Bend your legs, keeping your knees wide apart and your heels in contact with the floor, to drop into a deep squat. Place your hands lightly on the floor and pause for two seconds, then drive up off the floor powerfully, clapping your hands together overhead.

Words Sam Rider Photography Danny Bird Model Lee McLaughlin@WAthletic Clothing Gymshark Form Fitted T-shirt, £20,, Nike shorts, Adidas Originals ZX Flux Weave trainers, £80,






TIME 10MIN EMOM REPS 10 EACH LEG Sit on the floor with one leg bent, one straight and your fingers pointing towards your feet. Push into the floor and squeeze your glutes to slowly raise your hips until they’re level with your stabilising knee while raising your straight leg until it’s at 90° to your torso. Slowly lower to the start. Complete all the reps on one side, then switch. July 2016 | 131

Trainer | Body Work A

Do ten en reps ep of 5A, A, then go straight ight into ten each side ig of 5B. B. Then nine,, eight gh and so on, n, resting ng as needed


SETS 10-1 LADDER From standing, drop down and place your hands on the oor outside your feet. Jump your feet back and do a press-up, then hop your feet back to between your hands. Jump up, clapping your hands overhead.




SETS 10-1 LADDER Start in a forwards lunge position with your arms out for balance. Jump o the ground by driving up with your front leg. Swap your legs over in mid-air so you land with the other leg forward. Alternate legs for each rep.

132 | July 2016



Workout 2 Points of contact Shift your grip and stance on classic moves for upgraded gains



SETS 4 REPS 15/10/5/1 Grasp a bar with an overhand grip so your palms are facing away from you and your hands are double shoulder-width apart. Contract your upper back muscles and pull your sternum towards the bar. Then lower under control. Rest for 5sec per rep. Same drill on the final rep: take ten seconds.




SETS 4 REPS 20/10/5/1 Start in the top of a press-up position. ition. n. Bend your arms ms to lower your chest st until unt ntil it’s just off the floor oorr and simultaneously usly us ly bring one knee up to your elbow, then hen n return to the start. art. Alternate knees. When you’ve completed the reps, go straight to 1B without resting. On the final single rep, make this super-slow – do it over a ten count.






SETS 5 TIME 60SEC REST 60SEC Adopt a press-up position with your feet on a bench and your back and arms in a straight line. Keep your head tucked in and bend your arms to lower your head until it’s just off the floor. Push up. Use the same tempo as for the Bulgarian Bulgaria ian split squat in Workout Wor orko 1.


Once you can maintain a perfect L-shape with your body throughout, handstand press-ups are in your sights July 2016 | 133

Trainer | Body Work A




TIME 10MIN EMOM REPS 2 Hang from a pullup bar with an underhand grip. Contract your core and bring your legs up together until they’re parallel with the floor. From here contract your upper back and pull yourself up until your chin is above the bar. Lower to a dead hang between each rep.

The burpee tuck jump and hanging leg raise finisher is actually two fourminute Tabatas back to back. Put in 20 seconds of effort, then rest for ten. Alternate the two moves for eight minutes.






SETS 4 TIME 20SEC REST 10SEC Lower your hands nd to the floor and et jump your feet back into the ss-up top of a press-up p position. Hop ck, your feet back, p to then drive up sively. jump explosively. At the same time ees tuck your knees ur towards your chest. Bend your hion knees to cushion your landing and o continue into the next rep.

134 | July 2016 016





SETS 4 TIME 20SEC REST 10SEC Hang from a pull-up bar with an overhand grip and contract your upper back muscles. Contract your core and bring your legs up together until they’re parallel with the floor, then lower them back down to the start. Keep your core contracted throughout to avoid swinging.

Workout 3 Range, tempo and stability A

ch,, ppause and Stretch, power er upp for size and strength



This is very tough. Make it easier by releasing your foot – or harder by holding your foot with both hands

SETS 5 TIME 1MIN Grab the bar with an overhand grip, palms facing forwards, and let yourself hang fully. This decompresses your spine for improved posture while challenging your grip strength. Add in a gentle swing from side to side or change up the grip – narrow, wide, underhand or single arm – to expand the benefit.




SETS 4 REPS 10/5/3/1 Stand tall and grab one foot with the hand on the same side, pulling it towards your glutes. Put your other hand out for balance and bend your standing leg to lower your other knee until it just touches the floor, then drive back up. Go super-slow on the final rep.


SETS 5 TIME 60SEC REST 60SEC Perform a standard press-up but with your arms double shoulder-width apart. rt. Lower your chest until it’s just off the floor, then press back ck up until your arms are straight. Use the same tempo method that you used for the Bulgarian split squat in Workout 1.




Forcing the body to hold a position under tension reveals any chinks in your armour. Just as the plank exposes any weaknesses in your shoulders, core, glutes and thighs, the dead hang uncovers problems with your lats and your grip. Holding that position for longer is a low-impact strength fix.

July 2016 | 135

Trainer | Body Work



This is a classic plank with a double twist. Doing it with straight arms works your chest harder, while full tension keeps your heart pumping fast for a fat-loss bonus. Focusing on squeezing every muscle during a move will engage more muscle fibres than just those targeted with the exercise, transforming a low-energy move into a fullbody shock to melt away fat.

SETS 5 TIME 30SEC REST 30SEC Get into a plank with your arms straight and your weight on your hands and toes. Keep your body in line, feet together and upper arms straight down from shoulders. Squeeze every muscle, from your chest and abs to your glutes and calves. You should be shaking at the end of each set.





SETS 1-10 LADDER Start in a press-up position with hands elevated. Lower towards the bench, then explode up until you’re almost standing. Clap your hands, put them back out to break your fall and go into the next rep. This reverses the descending ladder in Workout 1 – start with low reps and climb to the top.




SETS 1-10 LADDER Position yourself under a pull-up bar. Lower your hands to the floor and jump your feet back into the top of a press-up position. Hop your feet back, then drive up to jump up explosively and grab the bar with palms facing you while pulling yourself up into a chin-up. Lower slowly under control, then drop to the floor for the next rep. A B

136 | July 2016



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Interesting person

Average day Richard Klein

The 29-year-old cofounder of Gyms Kitchen ( explains just what’s involved in running the UK’s first trainingfocused restaurant We start each shift talking to the staff about specials we’re going to do, what new products we’re bringing in. We let our chef do his thing but we’re always in the kitchen, suggesting ideas or discussing flavours. My business partner Steven Mavrou has an eye on cleanliness whereas I’m a stickler for food quality.

6am Wake up

9am Make time to exercise

10am Service starts

Half the reason why we do specials is so we don’t get bored with lunch every day. I think variety is important when eating. Never think of food as just fuel.

My day starts with scrambled eggs or porridge before I pick up the meat for the day. We only buy from the source – not shops or wholesalers. I’d recommend looking for cuts of meats with the lowest fat percentage, and chicken and turkey with the skin removed. There’s rarely a good time to train but it’s important to get in at least a short session. If time is really tight I’ll just do a simple HIIT workout on the rower. Make life easy on yourself and keep your gym gear in your car or by your desk so you can grab a workout when you get the chance.

12pm Question time

3pm Brainstorm specials

Steven and I are both front of house. We’re a new brand so there are a lot of questions when people first come in. People do ask for chips or full-fat whatever so we spend a lot of time explaining our healthier alternatives.

5pm Going beyond the basics


Although we work together all day, Steven and I often set time aside to play FIFA to unwind. It’s important to have something to switch off with at the end of the day.

When we first opened, we only offered the healthiest food but as we grew we knew we’d lose people if we didn’t bend the rules slightly. It does irk us slightly that we have to make those concessions but if people’s partners want burgers, we need to provide for them too.

IMPROVE YOUR LIFE with Klein’s tips for success 1 “If you’re busy keep a gym bag with you. Then you can take any chance to train.” 2 “Don’t overcomplicate your diet. Have protein and veg with every meal, and you’ll be golden.” 3 “We couldn’t believe no-one else had tried our business before us. Your simple idea might be a gap in the market.” 146 | July 2016

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STOP WASTING MONEY, START GETTING RESULTS There are dozens of supplements vying for your cash, but which are really worth the outlay? We’ve done the research so you don’t have to. Here’s how this book works


These are the supplements almost every expert and study agree should be in your fitness plan. In this book we’ve looked at each one in depth, and highlighted their pros, cons and dosing strategy.


If you’ve got specific training or health issues, you may be better served by other supps. You’ll find every major supplement covered in this guide – and probably a few you’ve never heard of too.









If the claims made for a supp’s benefits are hazy, or studies around it are nonexistent, we’ve marked it with a warning sign. You should steer clear – at least until you know more.



WORDS Joel Snape | DESIGN Camille Neilson | SUBEDITOR Jo Williams PHOTOGRAPHY Danny Bird, Henry Carter, iStock


Brazilian wonder berry


A Brazilian “superfood”, high in antioxidants and sold in frozen or supplement/tablet form. However, although it is often touted as having numerous health benefits, there’s little evidence to back up such claims.



Antioxidants, commonly found in fruit and veg, c a n a l s o b e t a ke n in pill form

Bronchitis beater?

Freeradical fighters

AFRICAN GERANIUM ANTIOXIDANTS A herb that may help to treat illnesses characterised by a dry throat and severe coughing or gastrointestinal illness. Used in some cases to treat bronchitis.


These supplements typically contain compounds found in fruit and vegetables, such as betacarotene, vitamins C and E, lycopene and selenium. The theory is that intense exercise produces free radicals and antioxidants offset that. Numerous studies, however, haven’t really found this to be the case, and there’s even some suggestion antioxidants can decrease training efficiency. Get them from fruit and veg instead.

For better blood flow


Produced naturally in the body, this non-essential amino acid improves performance by increasing the production of nitric oxide. This is a powerful vasodilator, which widens the blood vessels, increasing blood flow to muscles and enabling better delivery of nutrients and oxygen to promote muscle recovery and growth.



If you’ve taken stock of your training but the results still aren’t coming, you may be training too hard. The solution could be branchedchain amino acids. “BCAAs maintain a steady flow of protein to your muscles,” says trainer Dan Forbes. “This helps to reduce muscle loss during exercise and promotes protein synthesis.” The usual recommended dose is up to 25g in a workout – it’s better to take the full dose in your hardest workout than spread it out over two or three days.


The building blocks of muscle


Amino acids are the building blocks of protein. Branchedchain amino acids (BCAAs) are so called because of their branching structure, which includes a “side chain” of one carbon atom and three hydrogen atoms. There are three BCAAs: leucine, isoleucine and valine. Leucine is the most heavily researched and probably has the most benefits.

WHY ARE THEY SO IMPORTANT? BCAAs are the only amino acids not regulated by the gut and liver, which means they head straight to the bloodstream and muscle tissue. There’s evidence that they lower lactate levels, making recovery faster, and increase the release of growth hormone during exercise.


WHO SHOULD TAKE THEM? HOW SHOULD People who are training I TAKE THEM? extremely hard or in a

“fasted” state. Ordinarily, if you train in a fasted state, or don’t eat after exercise, you’ll lose more protein than you rebuild. BCAAs can offset this effect, so are an ideal mid-morning supplement if you’re on some variation of a fasting diet.


Take them in pill form or add the powdered version to a workout drink at a rate of 5g per hour of training. If you’re on a diet such as the 16/8 fast, take a similar dose mid-morning with green tea.


For hard trainers, BCAAs spare muscle and help recovery. Save them for training days.


The cyclist’s friend


This is what the pro cyclists take. Beetroot contains high levels of nitrate, which the body converts into nitrate oxide, boosting endurance and improving performance during high-intensity exercise. Drink 500ml of beetroot juice around two and a half hours before exercise. Concentrated beetroot shots are also available – two will provide a similar effect.



The pump promoter


Also known as the one that gives you the infamous “pump”. Research suggests beta-alanine improves endurance levels during weight-training sessions by increasing available ATP and carnosine in the body. Couple it with creatine and your results could be even better.

Keeping it intense


Sodium bicarbonate increases the pH of your blood, making it more alkaline. This allows hydrogen ions to pass more easily from muscle cells to the blood, so you can exercise at a high intensity for longer. It also removes lactate faster for a quicker recovery. Take between 14g and 21g with water 60-90 minutes before exercise.

The espresso alternative


This powerful stimulant affects your central and peripheral nervous systems and increases the level of endorphins in the brain, reducing the perception of pain and fatigue and increasing alertness and concentration. Caffeine has also been found to increase muscle-fibre recruitment to enhance performance. Available in pill form if you can’t stomach espresso.

Pre-bed protein

Fat fighter

Immunity booster




A form of protein found in dairy products – it makes up around 80% of cow’s milk, for example. It has long been thought of as the “bedtime” protein and taken overnight to drip-feed the muscles, but recent studies suggest it’s beneficial at any time and can even outstrip the effects of whey under certain circumstances. If you have the budget, micellar or hydrolysate casein is higher quality and more easily absorbed by your muscles.


A naturally occurring fatty acid, CLA diverts calories you eat away from fat storage and into muscle tissue, reducing body fat and increasing the amount of fat used for energy. It’s also a nonstimulant-based supplement, so it’s ideal for people who want to avoid the effects of other fat burners containing caffeine or thermogenics.

Derived from cow’s milk produced in the initial days after the birth of a calf, and as such contains high levels of immunity and growthboosting compounds, such as insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1), as well as various hormones and antimicrobial proteins. In addition to improving body composition, colostrum has been found to boost immunity and increase resistance to infection during times of strenuous training. Take 10-20g daily.


CREATINE Think of this one as the backup generator for your muscles. Creatine is produced in the body in small quantities and is also found naturally in foods such as meat and fish. It’s stored in muscle cells, then used to power high-intensity muscle contraction – think short bursts such as a maxeffort bench press or 100m sprint. With very limited supplies available, your body can’t always produce enough to fuel repeated high-intensity efforts, so taking it as a supplement will provide additional energy to muscles during workouts so you can train harder.



The power powder

An amino acid derivative constructed from arginine, glycine and methionine, produced naturally by the body at a rate of about 1-2g a day. It’s also degraded into creatinine and excreted in the urine at a rate of around 2g a day, so you never store much.

WHAT DOES “MONOHYDRATE” MEAN ON THE LABEL? Creatine phosphate doesn’t pass through cell membranes and isn’t easily absorbed by the body, so creatine monohydrate is usually the recommended form of the supplement. Other forms – such as creatine ethyl ester – are available, but one recent study found that “when compared to creatine monohydrate, creatine ethyl ester wasn’t as effective at increasing serum and muscle creatine levels or in improving body composition, muscle mass, strength and power.”



People doing high-intensity efforts in the gym – it has basically no effect on long, slow aerobic efforts. It’s also likely to be more beneficial to vegetarians or people who don’t eat much red meat. If your diet is very heavy in creatinerich foods, you might not get any extra benefits from supplementation.


You may have overheard gym-bros waxing lyrical about amazing short-term mass gain when taking creatine, but that’s largely because creatine is hydroscopic and encourages water retention. Long-term use can stimulate protein synthesis, though, so it will work if you stick with it.


In a word, no. Despite scare stories in the media, creatine is safe to use in the heat and doesn’t increase injury risk, although it can cause dehydration if not consumed with adequate water.


Take 3-5g a day dissolved in a hot beverage such as green tea, either before or after a high-intensity workout.

Possibly. Studies suggest creatine may have neuroprotective effects for neurological diseases such as Huntington’s and Parkinson’s. The jury’s out, though.



Flu beater


A herbal supplement prepared from the stems, flowers, roots and leaves of the echinacea plant, marketed as an immunity booster and preventative for the common cold and flu. Evidence of these claims inconsistent, but it may be worth taking during periods of intense training when the body’s susceptible to infection.

Sweat science


These are the salts your body loses through sweat, which may not be replenished adequately if you rehydrate with water alone. Avoid sugar-filled drinks and go for a basic rehydration kit – or, to make things even simpler, add a pinch of Himalayan sea salt to a glass of water in the morning.



For 5Ks and above


These usually consist of maltodextrin – a carbohydrate derived from starch – and simple sugars such as fructose and glucose. Gels may also contain caffeine and electrolytes such as sodium and potassium. Both formats are designed to offer a convenient way to consume carbs during bouts of endurance-based exercise lasting longer than one hour, after which your body’s stores of glycogen will have been depleted. Aim to ingest one to two bars or gels – each containing between 30g and 60g sugar – per subsequent hour of exercise after you pass the 60-minute mark.

Feel the heat


A variety of supplements that claim to boost metabolism and enhance fat loss without the same side-effects as ephedrine (insomnia, anxiety and decreased sleep quality). The ingredient with the most proven track record is green tea extract, which may increase thermogenesis.



FISH OIL There are dozens of reasons to take fish oil, from improved bone health to reduced risk of a host of diseases, and it will also make you thinner. “Unless you already eat a lot of oily fish, you can benefit from supplementing with fish oil to reduce body fat and inflammation,” says strength and conditioning coach Joseph Lightfoot. “It will also keep your levels of feelgood hormones on an even keel”, which will reduce the risk of you hitting the office biscuit tin.


All-in-one nutritional insurance


Oil. From fish. More specifically, it’s a supplement rich in omega 3 fatty acids including EPA and DHA, which are actually taken from algae. Omega 3s are important in everything from cardiovascular function to preventing neurodegenerative decline in old age.

IS THERE A DIFFERENCE BETWEEN BRANDS? Yes, a massive difference. Avoid cod liver oil and those containing trans fats, which aren’t nearly as beneficial. Choose a brand with a good ratio of omega 3 to omega 6; you may also want to get a brand that uses small fish (herring and mackerel), which contain fewer environmental toxins such as mercury. If you’re concerned about the environmental impact of such supplements, you can also choose one that uses “fish discards” and therefore doesn’t lead directly to the depletion of fish stocks.



With food, if you’d rather avoid fishy burps. Some sources claim oil is “better” than tablets, although it can be less pleasant to take. Research is inconclusive, however, so for convenience you should just invest in good-quality tablets.


If you only take one supplement, this should be it: invest in a good pill and take it daily.



The shock absorber


One of the major components of cartilage, glucosamine is an amino sugar that helps to cushion and absorb shock through our joints. The older you get, the less effective your cartilage becomes at protecting your joints as it gradually loses its elasticity, which can lead to injury. Glucosamine capsules and tablets – which tend to be made from lobster, crab and shrimp shells – combat this deterioration by stimulating the cartilage cells to produce proteoglycans, which help to restore joint function and mobility. Aim for three daily doses of 500mg.


The muscle enhancer


You should already be getting this amino acid – which studies suggest can can minimise muscle breakdown down dow n as well as improving pro protei protein tein n metabolism – from yourr diet, but if you’re especially cially cia lly stressed at work or train n hard in endurance sports, rts,, rts a glutamine supplement mentt men could be great for you. It can also increase energy rgy levels in your brain, improving your chances of getting through that 3pm meeting without nodding off, especially if you’ve been for a lunchtime run.


Fat loss in a cup


This tea – which originates from China and is produced from the leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant – is one of the best natural fat burners around and can give your metabolism a jolt. Green tea is also packed full of antioxidants and has been linked to the prevention of everything from heart disease to Alzheimer’s. Aim to drink it in on a daily basis in place of your regular cup of tea or soft drink to reap the huge variety of health benefits.



GREENS Face it: you’re not eating enough fruit and vegetables, and you certainly aren’t getting enough variety. Greens powder is your backup plan – throw it in a shake once a day and rest easy.


Your fivea-day backup plan


Vegetables, fruits, algae and grasses smashed into powder form, often including things you’d otherwise be loath to include in your diet such as wheatgrass, spirulina, alfalfa and the like. Think of it as a backup for when you’re not hitting your five-a-day, which isn’t just government nannying – it’s the baseline for protecting yourself against cancer, high cholesterol, diabetes, stroke and a host of other problems. Greens powder can also help to counteract the acidic effect of all the protein you’re eating.


You can drink it straight, but it isn’t always the best-tasting solo drink. One option is to blend it into a shake with protein, yogurt/kefir, a spoonful of nut butter and a banana or handful of berries for a morning blast of all-round nutritional power. The only time not to take it is immediately post-workout, when it will disrupt the process of inflammation and oxidation that aids recovery.


Fe w o f u s e a t t h e variety of green vegetables we should, which is why greens powder is so useful


Every product has its own formula, so read the label carefully. If you’re buying it for a specific effect – green tea or spirulina, say – make sure there’s more than a sprinkling in there.


Don’t think a supplement can replace actual broccoli and green beans, but use it to top up.



Fatigue smasher


Although not particularly effective as a weight-loss supplement, despite what you may have read, guarana is a potent performance-enhancing stimulant. The seeds of this South American shrub contain twice the amount of caffeine as coffee beans, as well as additional stimulants such as theobromine and theophylline, which help to improve alertness and reduce fatigue.

The good acid


Feeling bloated and gassy is a sign your hydochloric acid (HCL) levels aren’t up to scratch. “Take a tablet with each meal,” says nutritionist Ben Coomber. “Up the dose by one each time, until you feel a slight burning sensation in your chest. Back off by one tablet. This will help you digest better.”


Stress buster


According to research, this tropical plant extract can keep your cortisol levels in check during daily life, acting as an adaptogenic that boosts energy and can improve your testosterone/cortisol balance. The recommended dose is usually two tablets with breakfast and lunch.

Fat mobiliser


Before burning fat, you need to mobilise it. L-carnitine is the amino acid responsible for transporting fatty acids into the mitochondria, your energy powerhouses, so you use fat instead of glycogen for energy. It’s especially useful if you’re on a low-carb diet, where fat oxidisation is otherwise already optimised.


Postworkout powder

Zzzzs in pill form



The most anabolic amino acid, leucine can independently stimulate insulin secretion and muscle protein synthesis, enhancing the musclebuilding process. At 11%, whey protein is high in leucine content, which is one reason it’s so effective as a post-workout elixir.

Most people are deficient in this mineral, usually as a result of poor nutrition or pollution, but it’s responsible for over 300 different chemical processes in the body. One of the main benefits of magnesium is improved sleep – it induces relaxation, helping to calm the nervous system and promote a deeper, more restful sleep, and especially vivid dreams can indicate a deficiency. Experts recommend up to 2,000mg a day.

Gut feelings


These live, “healthy” bacteria live in the gut and play a crucial role in maintaining optimum digestion, immunity and intestinal health by crowding out diseasecausing bacteria and restoring the balance of intestinal flora. You can buy probiotics in capsule form, but live yogurt drinks are a more economical alternative. A typical 125g yogurt provides 4 billion bacteria, plus calcium and protein. Aim to drink one yogurt a day.

Feel the burn


Also known as fat burners, these mixtures of herbs and stimulants can increase your body temperature and boost your metabolism, helping you to torch fat. However, although they can work for a short-term boost, you should avoid long-term use. The key is to stick to the label’s guidelines when it comes to dose. You should avoid taking them after 2pm, however, because these stimulants may affect your sleep if taken any later in the day.



VITAMIN D If you live north of 42° latitude – that’s southern Spain – you can’t get your RDA of vitamin D through sunshine alone, at least during the winter months. “According to official statistics, at least 16% of us are deficient in this vitamin,” says personal trainer Sean McPhillips. “Low levels have been associated with diabetes, depression and seasonal affective disorder.” Best get it in a bottle, then.



Your insurance against UK summer

Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that exists in various forms. D3 is the type that exists in animals and is what you’ll get from the supplement version. It’s difficult to get from foods in sufficient quantities, and the sunlight version isn’t available through an office window – glass filters out UVB, which is the form of sunlight your body needs to produce this vitamin.


In the UK, the government recommendation is just 5mcg (200 IU) a day. Many professionals, however, recommend up to 2,000 IU.


HOW SHOULD I TAKE IT? Pills are fine, although it’s also available in spray form – take it under the tongue for the best effect.


Take at least 1,000 IU a day in winter, and top up in summer if you don’t think you’re getting outside enough.



WHEY PROTEIN If you’re trying to bulk up, it can be tempting to grab a pile of bargain-shelf cow remnants, but you wouldn’t expect them to provide the same glorious results as a grass-fed, 28-day aged ribeye steak. Similarly, when you’re looking for a powder, it can be tempting to head to your health food shop’s bargain aisle and grab the bucket of protein that offers the highest powder-to-pounds ratio, but by doing so you’re probably short-changing yourself. Go for quality, and the gains will come.



The word to remember is “bioavailability”. This pharmacological term refers to how much of your scoop – or rather, the amino acids in it – can actually be used by your body. It’s linked to biological value (BV), a unit of measurement that compares different protein sources via the nitrogen they allow to be stored in the body (bonus fact: if your powder causes, ah, emissions, that’s nitrogen being underused). Eggs are the usual comparison unit, with a BV of 100. A typical “good” value for whey is about 104.

It’s not all created equal


This debate has raged for years, but one thing that virtually everyone agrees on is that 2g per kilo is a good idea for the average gymgoer. This is also the ratio that was used in a 2015 study in which subjects lost fat while gaining muscle, long regarded as impossible for those not already eating enough chicken.



This is a common belief, but there’s almost no evidence to back it up. The oft-cited study that showed excess protein causing kidney problems was carried out on people with pre-existing kidney conditions and its results have never been replicated in healthy subjects.


Traditional thinking was you could only digest 20g of protein in one go, but there’s little science behind such beliefs. Similarly, taking protein post-workout isn’t the must-have it once was – it’s more important to have a moderate amount of carbs, to reduce catabolism and aid recovery. Your best bet is to get a decent hit of protein with every meal, topping up with shakes when necessary.


Aim to get enough from your diet. If that’s impossible, invest in quality and take it religiously.


Not just from oranges


One of the most well-known nutritional supplements, vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin that occurs naturally in fruit and vegetables and plays a key role in a variety of bodily functions. These include the formation of connective tissue, the production of hormones such as adrenaline and the formation of red blood cells. In addition, vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant, which helps to protect against cell damage, enhance recovery post-workout and protect against injury and illness.



The smart man’s flu cure


Constantly struck down by man-flu? Divert your funds from Lemsip to zinc. This essential mineral is used by the body for growth and repair, and is especially important when it comes to immune function. If you get ill frequently, it’s entirely possible you’re low on zinc – most people in the UK are. Hampered recovery from training and low testosterone production are other signs of deficiency. Aim to take 11mg a day and avoid taking it with coffee, which blocks absorption.

Energy in a spray


This supplement combines zinc, magnesium and vitamin B6. The first two nutrients play a key role in performance, helping to enhance cell growth and testosterone production and improve energy production while reducing levels of lactic acid and the perception of fatigue. Taking this supplement will help to correct common deficiencies in both zinc and magnesium and by doing so improve performance, although studies on its effectiveness for non-deficient trainees have been less conclusive.





POWER COMBOS Choose the right stack of supplements for your goals and supercharge your progress


Whey protein Casein BCAAs Creatine

Vitamin D Greens Zinc Magnesium



Whey protein Green tea Fish oil Vitamin D SUPPLEMENTS


Whey protein Creatine Vitamin D Magnesium