Matlock / Bakewell gym - Blog

The Woodlands newsletter: Monday 8th February 2021

Monday 8th February 2021


Things are looking up! Cases have dropped by nearly 30%, deaths have dropped by 10% and hospital admissions have dropped by over 22%. As at the 1st February, nearly 10 million people have been vaccinated.

So, let's talk about diet and fitness. I often get asked why I use vegan or vegetarian recipes in these newsletters. I think people are generally too reliant on meat and there are other viable options for hitting your daily protein target.

We have this odd propensity to give ourselves and others labels. So if you distribute a vegan recipe, you have to be a vegan? Ok, says who?

I am, I suppose, a flexitarian (also called 'casual vegetarianism'). This is a label for people who don't adhere to a pre-existing label. For some reason.

So flexitarianism is an increasingly popular, plant-based diet that claims to reduce your carbon footprint and improve your health with an eating regime that's mostly vegetarian - yet still allows for the occasional meat dish.

The rise of the flexitarian diet is a result of people taking a more environmentally sustainable approach to what they eat by reducing their meat consumption in exchange for alternative protein sources.

The flexitarian diet increases the intake of plant-based meals without completely eliminating meat. It is about adding new foods to your diet as opposed to excluding any, which can be extremely beneficial for health.

These plant-based foods include lentils, beans, peas, nuts and seeds, all excellent sources of protein.

It is also widely accepted that soluble fibre found in lentils and beans helps to reduce high cholesterol as part of a healthy diet, so including these regularly is definitely recommended. Nuts and seeds such as linseed (flaxseed), pine nuts, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds and walnuts are high in the heart-healthy polyunsaturated fats which help to maintain healthy cholesterol levels and provide essential fatty acids.

The flexitarian diet in conjunction with physical activity can reduce the risk of breast and prostate cancer.

When people do choose to eat meat, opting for good quality meat like grass feed beef or free range chicken.

Processed meats such as bacon, sausages, salami, ham and pâtés are high in both saturated fat and salt and provide very little in the way of vitamins and minerals.

Research from the World Health Organisation found that eating 50 grams of processed meat every day may increase the risk of colorectal cancer - so it's best to limit these foods.

I hope all of the above makes sense but if you have any questions please come and ask me.

Gym Only memberships:

Joint/Student (per month):

12 months: £20
3 months: £23
1 month: £26

Single (per month):

For single prices, please check our special offers:

Student prices are only for students in full time education.

Group Personal Training

The Woodlands Fitness Centre offers Unlimited Classes / Group training sessions:

* There are 43 group training sessions per week, including: Condition, Total, Upper, Lower, Core, Circuit and HIIT.

* We offer '30m' groups: these 30 minute Classes Group training sessions are condensed versions of our normal groups, designed to pack in high intensity exercise to push you to the next level and really make the most of your time here!

We have a 5.15pm Group on every weekday!

We have added a second Group class to Sunday morning to accommodate the increasing demand

Classes / Group training sessions are now strictly limited to 6 people! This is to ensure you get a higher quality of coaching and support.

We always prefer an informal approach - so we will be maintaining the booking forms in the gym.

All bookings can be made in the gym, by phone, e-mail or via social media.

How you book in isn't important; we just care that you attend regularly.

Here is a list of our group training sessions:

Group Training membership prices:

12 months: £30pm
3 months: £33pm
1 month: £36pm


For single prices, please check our special offers:

Personal Training:

The benefits of personal training outweigh your fears by a long shot and we can really help you achieve your goals. At Woodlands, we want to maximise your fitness experience.

30 minutes: £13 (£17)
45 minutes: £18 (£22)
60 minutes: £21 (£25)

The price in brackets is for non-members.

All of our PT packages include:

GROUP PT membership.
Gym membership.
Calorie target setting advice.
Nutritional support.

All PT sessions must be used within 4 weeks.

We use time limits with our personal training packages to encourage frequent and consistent training. Packages can be designed to your individual needs.

At least 24 hours notice of cancellation is required for all appointments - just so we have sufficient time to rebook the slot. Notice of less than 24 hours will incur a full payment of the session fee. These are standard terms for all good PT's.

We can adjust the time limits in advance to take into account holidays, business trips, etc.

All of our PT packages include full gym, group personal training & classes membership.

Opening Hours:

Monday: 7.30am - 9.00pm
Tuesday: 9.00am - 9.00pm
Wednesday: 7.30am - 9.00pm
Thursday: 9.00am - 9.00pm
Friday: 7.30am - 8.00pm
Saturday: 8.00am - 2.00pm
Sunday 8.00am - 2.00pm

We always want to know what you think of the Woodlands Fitness Centre - the gym, prices, personal training, group personal training, and anything else.

Please speak to us at the gym, email any feedback and suggestions to the email address at the end of this newsletter.



Not Lost Much Weight?

You've been on a diet and haven't lost as much weight as you'd wanted to?

You're demoralised and have no desire to try again?

Keep in mind that every time you diet you learn something. Whether or not you're successful, there is a lesson to be learned. Review your diet disasters and never be ashamed of your failures. Keep an open mind. Think of the strategies that didn't work when you tried to lose weight in the past. By looking at these failures you learn what not to repeat. Make sure to ask yourself: Why didn't these strategies work, and what have I learned from them?

For instance, you might have had the following situation: "All the dieting gurus told me, 'Don't deprive yourself.' Well, I didn't deprive myself. However, I went too far. Whenever I had a desire for cookies, I would eat them. I would try having just one, but I simply couldn't stop myself. I put on 10 pounds following the 'don't deprive yourself' diet."

Examine successes. One of the most important techniques associated with permanent weight loss is to review your past successes. For instance, from Atkins you might have learned you didn't need two slices of bread to feel satisfied by a sandwich. Just the meat and veggies wrapped in a lettuce leaf were satisfying on their own.

From South Beach you might have learned about good carbs versus bad carbs. Maybe Weight Watchers helped you realise that surrounding yourself with supportive people keeps you motivated. Or with Jenny Craig you might have learned portion control by eating the program's prepared foods.

Write down everything you've learned from your past successes. Then hold on to those facts, attitudes and behaviours to keep the weight off.

Obesity is a growing epidemic, as more people than ever are struggling to control their weight.

Increased portion sizes are thought to contribute to overeating and unwanted weight gain.

Research indicates that many factors can influence how much you eat.

People tend to eat almost all of what they serve themselves. Therefore, controlling portion sizes can help prevent overindulging.

There are many ways you can measure and control portion sizes — both at home and on the go.

The easiest way is to use Smaller Dinnerware.

Evidence suggests that sizes of plates, spoons and glasses can unconsciously influence how much food someone eats.

For example, using large plates can make food appear smaller — often leading to overeating.

In one study, people using a large bowl ate 77% more pasta than those using a medium-sized bowl.

In another study, nutritional experts served themselves 31% more ice cream when given larger bowls and 14.5% more when provided with larger serving spoons.

Interestingly, most people who ate more due to large dishes were completely unaware of the change in portion size.

Therefore, swapping your usual plate, bowl or serving spoon for a smaller alternative can reduce the helping of food and prevent overeating.

Most people feel just as full having eaten from a smaller dish as from a large one.

So, simply using smaller dishes or glasses can lower the amount of food or drink you consume. What's more, people tend to feel just as satisfied.

I hope all of the above makes sense but if you have any questions please come and ask me.

10 Rules For Fat Burning Exercise

If blasting body fat and burning calories is one of your main exercise goals, these 10 fat loss exercise tips will ensure you get the most out of every fat burning workout minute.

Be intense with your fat burning exercise

Don't be fooled by the so-called fat-burning zone. This is the misguided notion that working at a lower intensity is better for fat burning than working at a higher effort level (say, for example, walking instead of running.) The harder you exercise, the more calories you will burn and it is this that really counts when it comes to losing fat.

Choose your fat loss exercise carefully

There is no such thing as the 'ultimate' calorie-burning activity. Energy burned is dependent not just on the activity itself, but on how much effort you put in, how skilled you are at it, how long you do it for, and how often. So choose a fat burn exercise that you are going to do regularly and consistently. That means an activity that you actually enjoy (unless you want your workouts to involve untold misery and boredom!) and one that is practical and accessible.

Exercise larger muscles for greater calorie burn

Serious fat-burning activity uses the large muscle groups of the body - the thighs and bottom, chest and back. The greater the overall recruitment of muscle, the higher the calorie expenditure. So in your gym workouts, you are much better off using, say, the rower than one of those arm-cranking machines for maximum calorie burn.

Sustainable exercise development

To fire up the calorie furnace, fat-burning activity has to be sustainable for a reasonable period. So while skipping is great exercise, it's not much use if you can only do it for three minutes. The American College of Sports Medicine recommends 20-60 minutes per session, three to five times per week. It doesn't have to be continuous effort.

Interval training to maximise calorie burn

Interval training, in which you mix hard efforts with bouts of recovery, is one of the best ways of maximising calorie expenditure, improving aerobic fitness and making use of limited time. To get the most out of an interval session, ensure that you work outside the comfort zone on the efforts and ease right off during the recoveries. Try a 2:2 rest/work ratio to start with.

Lift weights:

Activities that are weight bearing use more calories than those in which your weight is supported (such as swimming or cycling), simply because you have to shift your own body weight against gravity.

Fasted cardio:

You may have heard that exercising on an empty stomach in the morning burns more fat. It is true that the body has to rely on fat stores if you don't break the overnight fast, but then again, the lack of a ready energy supply may mean that you don't work out for as long, or as hard as you may have otherwise done.

Go for the afterburn:

One of the best things about exercise is that the fat-burning benefits continue long after you've got out the shower. This 'afterburn' (increased calorie expenditure) is far greater following exercise at 75 per cent of maximum heart rate, or higher - another reason to eschew those low-intensity workouts!

Increase exercise intensity:

If you want to keep seeing results in your fat-burning programme, you must keep increasing the intensity. This isn't the same as increasing your effort, because as you get fitter, your body will be able to cope with increasing demands. If you rest on your laurels, the benefits will begin to tail off.

Keep moving to burn fat:

Maximise your daily fat burning by moving! Researchers at the Mayo Clinic have found that leaner people tend to stand and move more than overweight people in normal daily life. Their 'non-exercise activity thermogenesis' (NEAT) was as much as 350 calories higher each day. So don't just sit there, wiggle your toes, shake a leg, get up regularly and move your body.

I hope all of the above makes sense but if you have any questions please come and ask me.

Exercise of the week: Press-up

How to do it:

Get down into a press-up position with your hands placed shoulder-width apart and back flat, so a straight line forms from your head to heels, via your glutes.

Lower your body until your chest is an inch from the ground then explosively drive up by fully extending your arms. That's on rep.

This move uses multiple muscle groups for maximum growth and strengthens your shoulder joints.

Easily done as an exercise at home, this prepares you for progression to the more demanding shoulder exercises you'll face in a gym, like the incline bench press.

I hope all of the above makes sense but if you have any questions please come and ask me.

Recipe of the week: Kidney bean curry


1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
thumb-sized piece of ginger, peeled and finely chopped
1 small pack coriander, stalks finely chopped, leaves roughly shredded
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground paprika
2 tsp garam masala
400g can chopped tomatoes
400g can kidney beans, in water
cooked basmati rice, to serve


Heat the oil in a large frying pan over a low-medium heat.

Add the onion and a pinch of salt and cook slowly, stirring occasionally, until softened and just starting to colour.

Add the garlic, ginger and coriander stalks and cook for a further 2 mins, until fragrant.

Add the spices to the pan and cook for another 1 min, by which point everything should smell aromatic.

Tip in the chopped tomatoes and kidney beans in their water, then bring to the boil.

Turn down the heat and simmer for 15 mins until the curry is nice and thick. Season to taste, then serve with the basmati rice and the coriander leaves.


Useless Facts

Coca-Cola was originally green.

Men can read smaller print than women; women can hear better.

Hong Kong holds the most Rolls Royce's per capita.

Average number of days a West German goes without washing his underwear: 7

The Woodlands Fitness Centre Ltd
A: Unit 27, Molyneux Business Park, Darley Dale, Derbyshire, DE4 2HJ
T: (01629) 733 123