Health & Fitness

Fitness Hacks To Boost Your Workout

If you reply YES to any of the following, it probably means you could do with learning a few Fitness Hacks….
You are a dedicated gym bunny…you work out at least 3/4 times a week…you attend that god-awful spin class at 6am before work and lastly you’ve turned your fridge into a superfood greenhouse?
If you’re not seeing the results in your body you work so hard for at the gym, then it’s about time you powered up your fitness regime! We speak to Personal Trainer and Nutritionist Ricky Matharu and ask him to share his expert fitness hacks


‘Fitness Blends’ is the new buzz term for mixing up your workout to maximise results rather than just focusing on your favourite one – can you explain why this is good and how it helps to see results more quickly?
Exercise is essentially a stress on the body. The body responds by rebuilding to accommodate the demand of this stress. The greater the number of stresses you expose your body to through varied training or ‘Fitness blends’, the more opportunity you give your body to grow in strength, flexibility, tone, power and endurance. Focusing on your favourite exercise and staying in your comfort zone will maintain your current fitness level but restrict your potential to develop and see results.

How can you use your own body weight for resistance training and why is this beneficial?
Body weight exercises are great because you only require one machine! Your incredible body! Although you may have access to a gym with fancy equipment you may not have time to travel there and use it as often as you need to. Using your own body weight for resistance is great for toning and allows a broader range of movement.
Remember that maintaining a healthy body fat (below 30% for women and 25% for men) can require 3-5 sessions of exercise per week. I like to supplement my client’s sessions with a 10-minute routine they can complete before a shower. All you will need is the ‘tabata’ app to help with timings.
I would recommend Eric Cressey’s warm up routine, its fast and comprehensive-

We all know that eating smart will maximise your workout – can you give us some insight on how and why eating correctly can help your workout?
Eating a balanced meal a few hours before your workout can help to raise energy levels allowing you to train hard and provide you with the energy your body needs. If your workout is before 12pm and you tolerate caffeine well, then an espresso before training can help raise mental clarity and focus for your exercise.
A balanced meal should contain protein, vegetables, fat and safe starches or carbohydrates such as rice, or sweet potatoes. Protein can’t be stored in the body so ideally all meals should contain it. You need 1-2 palm-sized portions per meal. The correct post-workout food will provide the building blocks to build muscle. It’s important to remember that eating fat in both pre and post-workout meals is essential for your body to absorb the vitamins in vegetables.

Here is an example of a light meal you can throw together before your workout;
Protein – turkey breast
Veggies – some pre washed spinach watercress and rocket
Fat – cook the turkey in extra virgin olive oil or coconut oil
Carbs – Some pre-cut water melon cubes or sweet potato

A post workout meal should include the same constituents and I recommend making the following smoothie after a workout, it’s quick and easy to make and takes delicious! Just throw all ingredients into a blender, serve up and enjoy!

Protein – Full fat organic Yoghurt – 3-4 tbsp
Carbs – One frozen banana (I keep these in the fridge, run under hot water to defrost and peel using a paring knife
Vegetables – Cooked beetroot (delicious roasted if you have the time)
Flavour – Green and Black’s Cocoa powder (1-2tsp);
Just add water (ideally cold from fridge) until you get your desired consistency

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