Matlock / Bakewell gym - Blog

The Woodlands newsletter: Sunday 26th February 2023

Sunday 26th February 2023


Take a look around - TV ads, social media, even adverts on the streets and buses are simply shouting how easy and fast transforming your body is.

On January, here come the ads about 'New Years resolutions' and in September all you can see are posters with 'Back from holiday - back on track resolutions'.

What it usually does, it provokes guilt and anxiety, leading to low self esteem and frustration. Doesn't matter, what the ad tries to sell, it sells a bunch of those negative feelings in addition to the products or services it promotes.

All these ads from fitness supplements companies simply shout how easy it is to pop a pill and get such an amazing physique as the model on the ad.

Don't be fooled: there is no magic pill to help you get fit overnight. There is no easy way to achieve something truly valuable, such as a healthy and fit body.

Start exercising.

Join a gym.

Lift weights.

Do some HIIT.

Take the stairs instead of the elevator.

Go for a walk.

Choose a healthier meal on lunch today.

As Nike keep saying, just do it!

And keep doing it.

For more guidance, tips and information, please read the rest of our newsletter.

But first, here are our opening times, links to our website, some prices and more...

Gym Only memberships:

Joint/Student (per month):

12 months: £22
3 months: £24
1 month: £28

Single (per month):

For single prices, please check our special offers:

Student prices are only for students in full time education.

Small Group Personal Training:

How would you like to have personal training every single time you attend Woodlands?

Well now you can!

Our Small Group PT membership offers an appointment controlled personal training system where a personal trainer will train up to 6 members at any one time.

We offer a variety of group exercise sessions throughout the day to help you achieve you build fitness, strength, co-ordination and flexibility whilst burning fat.

Group sessions are strictly limited to 6-8 people:

There are 36 group training sessions per week, including:


We also offer '30m' groups: these 30 minute Classes Group training sessions are condensed versions of our normal 45 minute groups, designed to pack in high intensity exercise to push you to the next level and really make the most of your time here!

These shared personal training sessions are strictly limited to 6 (sometimes 8) 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:

Small Group PT membership prices:


12 months: £32pm
3 months: £34pm
1 month: £38pm


For single prices, please check our special offers:

2 x 45membership:

This membership includes:

✔ 2 x 45 minute PT sessions per month (worth £23 each)
✔ Small Group PT membership
✔ Gym membership
✔ Calorie target setting advice
✔ Nutritional support
✔ Discounted additional personal training sessions

12 month: £43pm
3 month: £46
1 month: £49

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.

Personal Training Packages:

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 mins:

4 weeks x 2 per week
6 x 30 mins: £72 (£89)

5 weeks x 2 per week
10 x 30 mins: £108 (£135)

45 mins:

3 weeks x 2 per week
6 x 45 mins: £98 (£128)

4 weeks x 2 per week
8 x 45 mins: £128 (£161)

60 mins:

4 weeks x 1 per week
4 x 60 mins: £88 (£109)

4 weeks x 2 per week
8 x 60 mins: £169 (£213)

The price in brackets is for non-members.

All of our PT packages include:

Small Group PT membership.
Gym membership.
Calorie target setting advice.
Nutritional support.

All PT sessions must be used within time periods listed above.

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 - 8.30pm
Tuesday: 8.30am - 8.30pm
Wednesday: 7.30am - 8.30pm
Thursday: 8.30am - 8.30pm
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.




I know we covered fruit last week - but one fruit that deserves to be highlighted is grapefruit. Its effects on weight control have been studied directly.

In a 12-week study in 91 obese individuals, eating half a fresh grapefruit before meals led to weight loss of 3.5 pounds (1.6 kg) (43).

The grapefruit group also had reduced insulin resistance, a metabolic abnormality that is implicated in various chronic diseases.

Therefore, eating half a grapefruit about half an hour before some of your daily meals may help you feel more satiated and eat fewer overall calories.

Studies indicate that grapefruit may suppress appetite and reduce calorie intake when eaten before meals. It's worth a try if you're want to lose weight.

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

Build Muscle With Time Under Tension (part 1)

Would you like to maximise your muscle growth?

In the wake of several small injuries that have kept me from training as heavy as I normally like, I've begun to lift a little lighter and increase my time under tension (TUT) to keep building muscle. If you believe in lifting heavy all the time, you might be surprised to learn that this technique hasn't decreased my mass at all. In fact, it's brought me incredible results!

Don't take my word for it, though. If you've been training a specific way for a long time, mix it up and try lifting for increased time under tension yourself! I'll explain everything you need to understand time under tension, how to employ it, and how you can increase it during your workouts to maximize your results. Read on—and then work out!

Time under tension is the time your muscle spends under load during a set. This includes the time spent in the concentric (shortening) phase, peak contraction phase, and eccentric (lengthening) phase. So, if you perform a 10-rep set, and each rep takes you 3 seconds to complete, your muscle experiences 30 seconds of time under tension.

If you were to perform that same set but spend 2 seconds lifting the weight (concentric phase), 1 second pausing during peak contraction, and 3 seconds lowering the weight (eccentric phase), those same 10 reps would give you approximately 60 seconds of TUT.

To increase the work done by your muscles, either increase the load or increase the time the muscle is placed under this load. Even though the rep count stayed the same, the muscle spent significantly more time under tension, and that extra time actually translates to a lot more work!

Remember, your muscle can't count. They don't know when you're lifting a 30-pound dumbbell for 10 reps. They simply feel the load created by the weight and the mechanical tension that comes from contracting the muscle under the load. Therefore, to increase the work done by your muscles, either increase the load or increase the time the muscle is placed under this load.

What is the best rep range and TUT for hypertrophy? Progressively overloading your muscles will force them to adapt and subsequently grow. Furthermore, research has proven time and time again that the optimal rep range for muscular growth, or hypertrophy, is between 8 and 12 reps. What isn't so clear, though, is the optimal range of TUT for hypertrophy.

For muscular hypertrophy, 30-70 seconds per set is optimal. For strength and size gains, or functional hypertrophy, you should train on the lower end of that range, around 30-50 seconds. If you want maximum hypertrophy without a strength emphasis, train on the higher end of that range, or around 50-70 seconds.

All you need is a little math to figure out the sets, reps, and TUT range for maximum hypertrophy. For example: perform sets of 8-12 reps, and take 4-6 seconds to perform each rep.

If you need any further information or advice on how to implement these into your training, please come and talk to me.

Recipe of the week: Prosecco Brined Turkey Breast with Brussels Sprouts and Speck


¼ cup (75g) rock salt
¼ cup (45g) light brown sugar
2 sprigs tarragon
2 bunches thyme (about 12 sprigs)
1 lemon thinly sliced
1.25 litres water
3 cups (750ml) prosecco
2 x 1.5kg turkey breast fillets skin on
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
sea salt and cracked black pepper
350 g speck or bacon chopped
500 g Brussels sprouts halved
1 bunch thyme about 6 sprigs, extra
lemon garlic butter
100 g unsalted butter softened
1 clove garlic crushed
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon rind


Place the salt, sugar, tarragon, thyme, lemon and 2 cups (500ml) of the water in a medium saucepan over high heat.

Bring to the boil and cook for 4 minutes, stirring to dissolve the salt. Allow to cool slightly.

Pour the brining liquid into a large (5-litre-capacity) non-reactive container+. Add the prosecco and another 2 cups (500ml) of the water.

Using your hands, carefully loosen the skin from the flesh of the turkey breasts. Lower the turkey, skin-side down, into the brine. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours (but no longer).

To make the lemon garlic butter, place the butter, garlic and lemon rind in a small bowl and mix to combine.

Remove the turkey from the container, discarding the brine, and pat dry with absorbent kitchen paper. Using your hands, spread the lemon garlic butter under the skin.

Place the oil in a large heavy-based frying pan over medium heat. Sprinkle the turkey with salt and pepper. Add 1 turkey breast to the pan, skin-side down.

Cook for 4 minutes each side or until golden brown. Remove from the pan and repeat with the remaining turkey. Return both turkey breasts to the pan, skin-side up.

Add the remaining 1 cup (250ml) of water, cover with a tight-fitting lid and cook for 20 minutes or until golden and cooked through. Remove the turkey from the pan, loosely cover with aluminium foil and reserve the cooking liquid.

Wipe the pan out and return to medium heat. Add the speck and cook, stirring, for 4 minutes or until crispy.

Remove and set aside. Increase the heat to high, add the Brussels sprouts and cook, stirring, for 1 minute or until lightly charred. Add the extra thyme and reserved liquid and cook for 2 minutes.

Serve turkey with the sprouts and crispy speck. Serves 4-6.


Exercise of the week: Lateral raise

This is one of the best moves for visible shoulder development. The lateral raise isolates your medial deltoid, the middle of three shoulder muscles, helping to develop your shoulder width and mass. Perfect for creating the V-shape that you covet.

How to do it:

Stand holding a light dumbbell in each hand.

Slowly lift the dumbbells out to the side until they reach shoulder height - no higher - and resist the urge to cheat by swinging the weight.

Pause, then lower back to your sides, slowly - you'll build more muscle fighting gravity than letting it do the work for you.

This is 1 rep.

Make sure you maintain good technique throughout all sets and repetitions.

Do 3-4 sets of 10-12 repetitions.

Rest for 60-90 seconds between sets.

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

Things to consider

Cottage cheese:

Cottage cheese is high in protein yet low in fat and calories. Its effect on fullness may be comparable to that of eggs.

Stiff Leg Deadlifts:

The stiff leg deadlift is similar to the conventional deadlift but the hips start at a higher position to a point where your back is at or nearly parallel with the floor. Your knees are more straighter than a conventional deadlift. This places less demand on the quads, and more demand on your glutes, hamstrings and back muscles.


Legumes are a good source of fibre and protein. They may help you feel full compared with other foods.

Use the right footwear:

Make sure your footwear is suitable for your workouts. Everything from ankle, knee, and hip pain can be aggravated or even caused by improper footwear.

(Re)consider Keto:

Keto has done more to kill gains than anything else. It made people afraid of carbs, and carbs are one of the most anabolic substances you can ingest. It's not just about energy. Carb intake increases several factors that promote muscle growth (mTOR, IGF-1, insulin) and decrease cortisol, which is catabolic.

Get Smaller Plates:

The bigger your plate, the bigger your meal, Brown reminds us. How so? While smaller plates make food servings appear significantly larger, larger plates make food appear smaller—which can lead to overeating.

In one study, campers who were given larger bowls served themselves and consumed 16 percent more cereal than those given smaller bowls. Swapping dinner for salad plates will help you eat more reasonable portions, which can help the pounds fly off your frame!

To kick even more calories to the curb, use small red plates. Although the vibrant hue may not match your dining room decor, the colour can help you eat less, according to a study published in the journal Appetite.

Researchers suggest that the colour red reduces the amount we're likely to eat by subtly instructing the mind to stop noshing.

Crack the Window Open:

Simply blasting the air conditioner, cracking a window open, or turning down the heat during the winter may help attack belly fat while we sleep, according to a study published in the journal Cell Press.

This is because colder temperatures subtly enhance the effectiveness of our brown fat stores—fat that keeps you warm by helping you burn through the fat stored in your belly. After participants spent 2 hours per day at 62.6 degrees F for six weeks, their brown fat stores increased.

Caloric deficit options:

You can achieve a caloric deficit by eating less, being more active, or a combination of both. But the less you eat, the less sustainable your fat loss efforts are, and the more likely you are to regain the weight. Moving more throughout the day makes fat loss more sustainable.

Fight Inflammation With Turmeric:

Part of the weight loss puzzle has to do with fighting inflammation, and incorporating the spice turmeric into your diet is an excellent way to do that.

Like a myriad of other spices, the Indian cooking staple contains anti-inflammatory compounds. In a 2015 study in the journal Clinical Nutrition , researchers gave 117 patients with metabolic syndrome either supplements of curcumin—the active ingredient in turmeric—or a placebo.

Over eight weeks, those who received the curcumin saw dramatic reductions in inflammation and fasting blood sugar.

Useless Facts

One third of all cancers are sun related.

Jeremy Brook knows Victoria's secret.

THE MOST UNUSUAL CANNONBALL: On two occasions, Miss 'Rita Thunderbird' remained inside the cannon despite a lot of gunpowder encouragement to do otherwise. She performed in a gold lamé bikini and on one of the two occasions (1977) Miss Thunderbird remained lodged in the cannon, while her bra was shot across the Thames River.

It has been estimated that humans use only 10% of their brain.

Stuart Pearson can find the end of a circle.

Valentine Tapley from Pike County, Missouri grew chin whiskers attaining a length of twelve feet six inches from 1860 until his death 1910, protesting Abraham Lincoln's election to the presidency.

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