Categorized as: Blog

Rough Runner Oxford 2019

We have entered team Fitlife into this event for 3 straight years, and we love it so much we will keep coming back year after year.

A 10k obstacle run with the enphasis on FUN! No electrocuting, no ice cold water, no running through fire. Just fun obstacles in the beautiful cotswold countyside with a beer after.

Click the link, enter the 10k event on Saturday 18th May and make sure you enter Team Fitlife when asked.

We will give you our famous luminous Fitlife event t-shirt for being so awesome!

https://roughrunner.com/events/oxford/

The Fitlife Challenge 2019 – Lake District 10 peaks.

24 miles.

10 mountains.

12 hours.

This years challenge combines team morale, endurance and stunning scenery.

The challenge

You and your team will self navigate your way around a 24 mile route in the beautiful lake district. The route will have you reaching 10 of the lakes finest peaks. You have 12 hours to complete the challenge.

The criteria

This is a team event. Your team must contain a minimum 4 people which must have at least 1 of each sex. There is no maximum number of people for your team. If you can not find a team, we will pick one for you.

The itinerary

Friday 7th June

  • Make your own way to the Grasmere, Lake District for a briefing at 7:30pm (location to be confirmed)

Saturday 8th June

  •  Assemble for final briefing at the start location for 5am.
  • Navigate the route to return to start location for 5pm
  • Celebratory dinner and party from 7pm

Sunday 9th June

  • Return home

Cost

Entry to the event is £50 to be paid in full at the time of booking. This includes GPS of the route, safety briefing, training plan.

To make booking or enquire please email steven@fitlife.co.uk

You are responsible to book your own accommodation. The event briefing, start and finish will be in Grasmere. So accommodation will need to be in the town or close enough to access easily.

You must arrange your own travel for the event.

 

 

100 Burpee Challenge

Personal trainer Harriet Olliffe is challenging everyone and anyone to perform 100 burpees a day, every day, throughout July.

You may split the burpees up however you wish.. All 100 in a row, 10 every hour, 50 in the morning and 50 at night, it’s completely up to you. As long as all 100 are completed that day, you’re all good.

Every day that you miss you will result in a £1 donation to MNDA via this page – https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/100burpeechallenge

We have chosen to support Motor neurone disease association for this challenge. MND is a progressive disease involving the degeneration on the motor neurons and wasting of the muscles. We have chosen to perform 100 burpees a day for a whole month because you never know when the ability to move your body freely can be taken away forever.

Burpees can be performed anywhere at any time. Check out how to do them here –  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G2hv_NYhM-A

Share the donation page and get as many friends as possible involved in this challenge.

Use the Hashtag 100burpeechallenge on social media for us to track your challenge.

Enjoy

3 Peaks, 24 hours, 34 fantastic people – the experience

3 Peaks, 24 hours, 34 fantastic people – the experience by Becky The Fit Thing

This month I completed the 3 peaks challenge for Motor Neurone Disease, alongside 34 other Fitlifers.

The 3 Peaks challenge consists of climbing Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Snowdon all in under 24 hours. This equalled 75k steps and 1200 floors (according to Fitbit!) It is a challenge not just for the body and your fitness, but certainly for your mind too!

I can’t stop thinking about the experience, and how absolutely amazing it was. It was literally one of the best and one of the hardest things I have ever done.

Finishing it, injury free, and within the timeframe made me want to bow down to my body and thank it for pushing on up Scafell Pike, even though my knees were burning and the sun was beating down. For finding some strength to run down the final 15 minutes of Snowdon, and even managing to laugh most of the way!

Ben Nevis was the first test. And while I knew I was climbing a mountain, and I knew that it was going to be high, I honestly didn’t realise how high it would be. The first hour of that walk was hard. Getting to realise the enormity of the task ahead was quite something, with the cloudy peak way, way out in the distance. Once my heart rate had settled it got… kind of easier. The top of Nevis was cold, snow cold, in the middle of June. Then going down my shoe lace came undone and I had to remove a glove to tie it back up. Getting a hand out in that cold, cold weather turned it into a painful claw!

On the way up and down the mountain we chatted to each other, learning more and more about our mini bus family. Telling stories, jokes and sharing sweets.

It took 4 hours and 40 minutes to get us all off of the mountain and down to the mini buses.

Next up was Scafell Pike.

This was the shortest but the cruellest of the 3. The terrain was like huge, uneven steps. The sun was hot, the climb was sweaty. I rushed to the top as fast as I could just to get it over with, chasing after the speedy climber Charlotte all the way up!

But after reaching the top you then have the worst bit… the coming down. Coming down absolutely killed on the knees. Burning. It was the only one I thought that wow, I need to sit down. But we all pressed on. Nigel described Scafell Pike as relentless. And that it was. Not a rest break to be had. Just step after step.

Then we headed to Snowdon.

It was dark when we reached Snowdon and after a few good tunes in the mini bus we were all raring to go. Usher’s Yeah is likely to get me in the mood for anything, even mountain climbing on no sleep! Head torches on, too many layers and our Fitlife Tees we headed off up into the mountain. Molly and I spoke most of the way about food, powered on by Jelly babies and the thoughts of brunch (and a good pep talk from Nigel) we found our way to the top. Snowdon felt very quiet as everyone was spread out, depending on their energy left in the tank. But I felt so safe, it was weird. I didn’t even think that it was pitch black and we were walking close to the edges with no signal on our phones.

Weird things started to happen to me post Snowdon, which was the exhaustion I think. I was sure I saw a tortoise and a sheep. Both of which were rocks. I thought I saw a group of people, it was a collection of flower pots. Tiredness can do some funny things to you! ​​

Running down the final hill on Snowdon (hurt less and got it done quicker!) meant that we got down with 27 minutes to spare of the 24 hours.

I feel so proud to say that I did it, and so glad to have made some great friends along the way.

If you ever get a chance to walk up and down those mountains, grab it. The scenery is… beautiful doesn’t even cut it.

 

Credit – Becky The Fit Thing, 

Website – http://www.thefitthing.co.uk/

Flow for Shoulders

Releasing Upper Back and Shoulders  

Following on from our “flow for shoulders” session on Tuesday night here are a few quick stretches to add to your routine to help release tension in the shoulders and upper back.  It’s worth saying that the below stretches are more for general maintenance and if you suspect you might have a specific shoulder issue, best to get Andy at Elite take a look.

1. Posture 

The number one thing we can do to help keep our shoulders happy is take a look at our posture.  Sitting at desks and constant use of devices means a lot of us our guilty of poor posture including me.  Try this one to help bring things back to neutral:

  • Bring the arms behind the back and take hold of the opposite elbow
  • If you can’t hold the elbow take hold of the opposite forearm
  • Draw the shoulder blades on to the back of the ribs and lift the chest
  • Let the tops of the upper arms draw back and down away from the ears
  • Bring the back of the head up and back so the chin is parallel to the floor
  • From this position you can take a few neck stretches, by letting the right ear draw down to the right shoulder and repeating on the opposite side

2. Front of Shoulder Opener 

This one works to open the front of the chest (pecs) and is best done with a yoga belt rather than a resistance band.  If you don’t have a yoga belt you can use a towel or a regular belt or tie.

  • Bring the hands wide apart on the belt
  • You can adjust the distance between the hands as you go along
  • Keeping the arms straight lower the belt behind you and then back overhead
  • Bring the hands further apart if the arms begin to bend
  • Bring the hands closer together to increase the stretch
  • Repeat a few more times
  • To target the side body (lats) too let one arm draw back behind you as the opposite arm extends up
  • Hold for a few breaths and repeat on the other side

3. Back of Shoulder Opener

This is a great one for releasing tension on the back of the shoulders (trapezius muscles) and between the shoulder blades (rhomboids)

  • Bend the elbows and take the arms out to the side shoulder height
  • Cross the right elbow over the left and bring the hands together
  • Keep the bottom arm straight instead as in the 2nd photo
  • Draw the elbows to shoulder height and the forearms parallel with the face
  • Hold for a few breaths and then repeat with the left elbow on top

Tips for a Positive Fitness Journey

As personal trainers, we encourage clients and members to set goals to help direct their fitness journey. However, we understand how frustrating it can be not to reach those goals, or to face struggles during the process. Here are our top tips for goal setting, and ways you can make the journey a positive one.

Be Realistic

We are all for our clients and members having huge aspirations and aiming high, but we recognise our role in ensuring the goals set remain realistic. If you’re just starting out in the gym, perhaps an Ultra-marathon a few months after you dive into your first workout isn’t the most appropriate goal to start. But a 5K followed by a 10K could be a great place to start! If your goal is weight loss, or weight gain then it is important to be honest with both yourself and your trainer as to how many days a week you are going to be able to commit to the gym and also understand that taking an interest in your nutrition is imperative; you can’t out train a bad diet! Plus, why wouldn’t you want to fill your body with healthy, nutritious goodies?! Being realistic with your goal setting means they are within reach, if you are committed.

Plan Ahead

Setting a goal and the steps to take in order to achieve it is one thing, but sticking to the plan is a totally different ball game! You’ll likely come across weeks where the plan feels a little more of a struggle, you might miss a couple of sessions or indulge on a few too many treats but it’s important to remain positive and get back on track as soon as you can. Planning your visits to the gym in a diary is a good way of staying committed; just like an appointment or meeting with work, the time is set and it becomes harder to find excuses not to train. Even better if you plan that session with another person; no one likes the feeling of guilt when you cancel on someone! Preparing your meals in advance is a great failsafe when it comes to staying on track with your diet. Having food ready for you when you get up in the morning, are bored at your desk, or when you get home from a long day at work will help stop you reaching for the unhealthy snacks when the hunger pangs strike (and save you heaps of time!) Try a few different recipes and keep things varied!

Set Short-Term Goals

Setting one huge goal can often be daunting and feel very distant, leaving you feeling demotivated and more likely to give up. Think about some shorter-term goals that will help you stay on track and feeling positive. If overall it’s an aesthetic goal you are pursuing, why not focus on some performance goals in the meantime? In the first few weeks you might not see a huge change in appearance, but it’s highly likely that you’ll find yourself able to do things you couldn’t before. Perhaps you started with a few minutes on the treadmill before feeling really puffed out but now you can manage a 3k run, or you struggled to do a sit up but can now do 10 in a row? As trainers, we see these improvements all the time but sadly we find lots of clients focussing solely on the way they look and feeling disheartened when they don’t see changes as soon as they thought they would.

Enjoy Yourself!

Fitness should be fun and something you’d like to continue for life. Perhaps you love the atmosphere of a group exercise class and being told what to do by an instructor or enjoy coming with a friend. Maybe it’s the buzz of chasing down that personal best, or the endorphins you get from a HIIT-based workout. Whatever it is, by choosing something you enjoy you’re more likely to stick with it for the long run.

 

Harriet Olliffe

 

 

Fitlife are hiring!

Fitlife are hiring!!

Who are we?

We are a gym in Haddenham, Buckinghamshire operating with 500 members. We deliver high quality classes, personal training and a functional gym area. We pride ourselves on our community, friendly feel – bridging a gap between an accessible yet current and cool fitness brand. We have a range of members from teenagers to elderly. Our staff are one of the most important aspects of our business – an extremely high level of customer service is vital to our business and our members are constantly complimenting us for this aspect. We also pride ourselves on being a great place to work, with an extremely friendly team, a fun environment with Fitness as a common interest. We don’t expect everyone to be ‘fitness fanatics’ but we do expect anyone applying for the role to have a general interest in health and the fitness industry.

What is the role?

We are looking for a new full-time front of house staff member. The role is predominantly customer service based and so a desire to work within a public customer role, delivering high standards is vital. The role will include; membership sales, member interaction, general enquiries, organisation within the business, making shakes in our shake bar, general cleanliness to name a few…the right candidate will need to be a confident outgoing person and able to deliver a high standard of customer service and have the ability to work well within a team. We are a small team and value our staff highly, as a result it is very important we find the right person to suit the role.

What are the hours and pay?

As we are a gym open long hours we operate shift work. There is some flexibility in the weekday shifts for the right candidate. One Saturday a month is off working the Monday instead.

Monday OFF

Tuesday 1.30pm-9.30pm

Wednesday 6.15am-1.30pm

Thursday 1.30pm-9.30pm

Friday 6.15am – 12.00pm

Saturday 7.30am – 5.00pm

Information regarding pay and contractual information will be discussed at interview.

If you are interested in the role please send any questions/queries/CVS to Jessica@fitlife.co.uk or give us a call for information on 01844292772. All applications need to be in by May 20th with a start date of July 3rd.

Flow for Hip Flexors

Hip Flexor Stretches

Last month we worked on lengthening the hamstrings, this month we will look at another group of major hip muscles – the hip flexors.

There are quite a few muscles that fall in to ‘hip flexor’ camp – psoas being one of the major ones. Together the hip flexors contract to pull the thigh and torso toward each other, so they get used a lot in the gym – squats, deadlifts, sit ups, to name a few. They can also get locked short + tight if we spend a lot of time during the day sitting. Like the hamstrings if the hip flexors get chronically tight they can begin to affect our pelvis, lower back and posture. Because of this its a good idea to build a couple of stretches in to your workout, here’s a few to get you started:

1. Passive Hip Flexor Release

This one’s a nice passive stretch so can be held for a little longer. It also requires props so a good one to practise at home.

 

  •  

    Elevate the hips (about 2-4 inches) by placing a support under the bum. I’m using a yoga brick but a couple of thick books will do.

  • Draw the right knee in to the chest and extend out through the left leg.
  • You should feel a gentle stretch the front of the left hip.
  • Hold for a couple of minutes and repeat on the other side.

2. Kneeling Lunge

Tight hip flexors can pull the pelvis forward so lifting through the front of the hips will help bring the pelvis back to neutral and give you a deeper stretch in this pose:

 

  • Bring the right foot between the hand’s, stacking the knee over the ankle.
  • Bring the hands to the hips and lift up on the hip points (the bony bits on the front of the pelvis.)
  • For a slightly deeper turn the toes under on the left foot and push down through the ball of the foot.
  • You can also add a shoulder opener by interlacing the fingers behind the back.
  • Hold for 6-8 breaths and repeat on the left side.

 

3. Reclined Hip Flexor + Quads 

This last stretch will target the hip flexors + quads. If you can’t hold the foot, loop a belt around the foot and hold that instead:

 

  • Lying on your front, legs hip width apart.
  • Lengthen the lower back by drawing the tailbone towards the heels.
  • Bend the right knee and holding the outside of the foot draw your heel to your bum.
  • Keep both of the hip points on the mat.
  • Hold for 6-8 breaths before repeating on the side.

 

5 Tips to aid fat loss

It is normally around this time of year we start to think about summer and the next time we will be slipping into our bathing suit. It is only natural for some of us that we want to lose that little bit of weight in time for holiday season. I have put together 5 tips which can help aid the fat loss process but can be easily applied into your daily life. Read More

Can you be strong without eating meat?

I was triggered to write this blog post after I overheard a man in the gym say “Pfff, Vegan! How can you possible train in the gym on a Vegan diet. You need to eat proper protein to be strong”.

So here I am, about to prove that man wrong. And maybe, even some of the other cavemen out there… So put your spear down for a moment and have a little read of this. Read More