How is everyone doing? I bet everyone is having a Terrific Tuesday and reminiscing about the lovely weather we’ve had over the weekend!
My name is Raghad I am an Intern for We Push Ducks Gym. Welcome to the first blog on the website. The blog page is going to be a place where you are able to find useful information about:
- General Health
- Healthy Eating
- Tips on how to stay fit while pregnant/raising a baby
Family related posts and many more. As you know We Push Ducks gym is all about having a ‘family atmosphere’ and making everyone ‘feel welcome’ and that applies to this blog here. You are welcome to comment and have discussions in the comment section, share the blog posts with family and friends, even if they do not attend the gym. We want everyone to benefit from the information we are presenting. I will be posting the first useful post that ALL of you will be enjoying on Tuesday the 1st May!!!
Be prepared for amazing content that everyone will enjoy.
Here at We Push Ducks we love to train to music, but there are good reasons behind it. If your having trouble reaching your full exercise potential, let’s find out why working out to some top tunes could help you go that extra mile.
Firstly, music makes you want to move. Getting a beat at the right tempo will help you to maintain a good pace and rhythm.
Music can have a massive effect on your mood. So, if your playing an upbeat track whilst performing a fitness routine, your bound to enjoy it more, and those positive vibes will make everything so much more fun as well as making it easier.
Endurance and stamina is always increased when you are enjoying doing something, so a good tune can help keep you on a good mind set for exercise. Music is a great distraction! Having a good playlist to workout to, will help keep your mind off of the hard work you are putting in and will in turn help you to go that bit further.
Let We Push Ducks know what tracks you keep on your fitness playlist!
You’ve heard the saying- ‘Start the day in the best possible way.’ Well, what is that way exactly? The answer is in your kitchen! Here at We Push Ducks we think that everyone should ensure that they have a balanced and healthy breakfast to set them up for the hours ahead and here’s why-
· Breakfast really is the most important meal of the day!
Eating a healthy breakfast sets you up for the rest of the day. It wakes you up properly by fuelling your body and your brain with essential nutrients that make you feel energised and alert. It gives you a feel good factor, making you less likely to feel moody or irritable.
· Helps maintain a healthy weight
It is a well-known fact that skipping breakfast is linked to being over weight. Those that think missing out on this meal will reduce their daily calorie intake are wrong because the likelihood is that it will just lead to you snacking mid morning or bingeing on bigger meals later in the day. Eating breakfast helps you to make better food choices later because it reduces hunger and means you will not be reaching for the biscuit tin before lunchtime, or grabbing the fattest sandwich on the trolley on your lunch break. Eating breakfast also gives your metabolism a kick-start, which as we know helps to lose weight.
· Good for your general health
The list of vitamins and nutrients needed to keep us in tip-top shape is endless. Trying to cram your five a day into just lunch and dinner would make it very difficult to ensure that your taking in the recommended amounts. Eating a healthy breakfast gives you a good opportunity to have some fruit and fibre to count towards your daily requirements.
Many of you may feel that you don’t have time for breakfast. After all, that alarm clock is buzzing early enough as it is and you’re still rushing to get ready for work in the morning. There are also those of you that don’t feel that you could eat a meal almost as soon as you wake up. Why not try a quick and easy answer to these problems. A simple fruit smoothy could provide you with exactly what you need to help you get started for your day ahead and could be prepared in advance to save time in the morning. Alternatively, setting your alarm just ten minutes earlier will give you enough time for a bowl of porridge, which only takes a couple of minutes to prepare. If you make a change and start the day with breakfast, it wont be long before it becomes the best habit you could have developed. Try it and see- you’ll soon notice the difference
At We Push Ducks we advise anyone trying to lose weight that whilst your fitness activities will contribute to your success, what you put into your body will have a massive impact on your progress.
Keeping a journal of what you eat increases your awareness of how many calories you are taking in. You might think you’re only having the odd biscuit here and there, but once you have kept a record of it, you will be able to see that with some of them being around 100 calories a pop, you can have eaten nearly a quarter of your recommended daily calorie intake or more by munching on the crunchy snacks.
You should also record beverages in a food diary, because you may be amazed at how much your favourite thirst quencher is obstructing your weight loss. Just one can of coke contains over 140 calories. Seeing this in black and white in your food diary will encourage you to drink more water instead, which will benefit your health dramatically.
It can also be a good idea to keep a record of moods, company and locations that you eat at in your food diary. This will help you to identify any bad habits that you have and also understand your physiological relationship with food and whether you need to work on that.
Start your food diary today and let us know if you are surprised by the results! Please remember to be honest with yourself and write down everything you eat.
Have you kept a food diary before? How did it help with your success? Share your experiences with us and help to give a little encouragement to those that need it!
Running outdoors can be great for your health, to assist weight loss or to keep fit. However, if you are going to start running outdoors you do need to know how to do so safely in order to prevent causing yourself more harm than good. There are some important tips you need to follow in order to avoid overuse injuries such as runner’s knee and muscle tears as well as other unnecessary impacts.
If you are going to start running make sure you wear the correct footwear. A good running show will provide you with the correct stability to help prevent stress on joints and blisters. It will also be flexible enough for your foot to move properly with each stride.
Before you start a run it really is important to warm up. Many will be tempted to get on the road and go speeding off, but this will be damaging to your muscles, bones and joints. You need to loosen up before running and a good way of doing this is to stretch and walk before building up pace gently.
It is also equally as important to cool down at the end of a run. This enables the body to keep blood flowing, increasing your flexibility and preventing injury.
You must keep hydrated when running. Drinking water will increase your energy level and keep you alert so that you can maximise the benefits of your run. Make sure that you drink before you head out and it is a good idea to carry a bottle of water with you during your run to prevent dehydration as well as to drink some post-run to re-hydrate yourself since you will have lost a lot of water through sweat. A loss of water means a loss of nutrients, which you need to replace to maintain health.
Be sure to remain vigilant when running on the road. Look out for hazards such as cracked pavements and try to run facing oncoming traffic. It is always a good idea to wear high visibility clothing so that you can be seen clearly and although many of us do like to exercise to music, it can be dangerous to run with headphones on because it takes our attention away from our surroundings.
There are many benefits to embarking on a running regime, but please make sure you do safely!
At We Push Ducks we know that every body needs a little bit of a kick start sometimes to get their training brain on. Let’s take a look at the top excuses for not exercising and how they can be overcome.
· Not enough time
When it comes to training, there is always time to do something and every little helps. You don’t need to spend three hours in a gym to keep fit. How about leaving for work ten minutes earlier to walk to the station, or even jumping off the bus two stops early to add some steps to your day. The government recommendation for adults to stay healthy is a mere 150 minutes per week of moderate activity- that’s just 2% of your whole week. Doesn’t sound so bad when you put it like that does it? Why not head down to We Push Ducks- just a one-hour session with us, at a time convenient for you would contribute massively to your recommended exercise amount.
· Family commitments
We appreciate that sometimes you may have other things to take care of, especially if you have children. However, this does not mean that your fitness needs to take back seat. At We Push Ducks we encourage families to train together, using a range of fun exercise activities. In addition to that you could also try heading to the local swimming baths with your children, or even to the local park with a football to help keep you all fit and healthy.
The cost of a gym membership can prove to be quite expensive. However, at We Push Ducks a session will cost you just £5! That’s a small price to pay for an all over body workout. Remember, a walk in the park doesn’t cost you a penny, so just get out there and do it!
· Self conscious
The thought of training at a new gym can be daunting. You may conscious of being a beginner and desperate to avoid the stares of others. The gym maybe full of egos! Just remember that the woman who runs for half an hour on the treadmill has had to train to get there. Imagine where you could be this time next year if you just make a start today! At We Push Ducks we promote that it’s not what you push, it’s what you look like you push. And all of our participants push ducks! It’s that simple. It really is a non-vanity activity aimed at giving everyone an equal chance of overcoming obstacles and achieving their individual goals, without the stress of worrying about what they look like.
· Unaware of what to do
At We Push Ducks we can offer you a structured regime during the sessions and are always happy and available should you wish to seek the advice of our trainers at the end of a session. As well as providing a fitness class, we can also give you help and ideas as to what you can be doing at home, to continue your journey to a healthier lifestyle.
So, there you have it- all those little obstacles you have created are just in your mind. There’s no reason that you cannot start your fitness regime right now! We are here to help if you need us.
Let us know if you have any other personal reasons that you feel are preventing you from exercising and we will try our best to give you a solution. Share this post if you think you have a friend that needs a bit of encouragement to get going!
At We Push Ducks we incorporate Yoga style movements into our sessions and here’s why-
Introducing Yoga into your fitness regime can provoke countless benefits to you both physically and mentally. With its focus on breathing, strength and flexibility, Yoga is a great way to assist you in following your existing exercise programme. It increases blood flow throughout your entire body, which in turn gives your energy levels a real boost.
The Yoga postures we use help strengthen and tone the body and muscles, increase core strength and reach out to lubricate joints that you do not often use. This means it is a fantastic way to improve balance and flexibility as well as to increase stamina.
Whilst Yoga has its benefits on the outside, it also gives a massage effect to your internal organs, helping to detoxify the body as well as aid in the effect of your digestive system.
To top it all off, Yoga acts as a stress reliever. The breathing exercises act as a meditator by calming emotions, which can prove to be a great anti-depressant and is extremely uplifting!
Let us know if you use Yoga as part of your fitness regime and share this post with friends that you think would love a new way to improve their health!
Here at We Push Ducks, we encourage you to vary your workout routine in order to maximise the benefits of your time spent making an effort to keep fit. So, why is it that changing your workout can be key to increasing your results? Let’s take a look at just some of the reasons that you should try switching it up!
· Improved adherence
Those of you that have experienced joining a new gym or embarking on a new fitness regime will know that you are nearly always enthusiastic in the beginning. You’re looking for results and excited at a new challenge. However, we are sure many of you are also familiar with how boring it can feel once you have been performing the same workout routine for a few weeks. It’s monotonous and can start to feel like a chore, no longer as enjoyable as it was at the start. By changing your routine every now and then, you will increase your desire to continue working towards your fitness goals because you will maintain your excitement. This means you are more likely to stick at it and take those steps closer to achieving your goals.
· Prevent Injury
Performing the same routine over and over again can have the same effect on your body as typing on a keyboard all day can have on your fingers. It is important to give your muscles and joints a rest during a fitness regime to prevent types of repetitive strain injury. By alternating your routine, you will allow parts of your body to recover, whist at the same time give other parts the opportunity to gain strength.
· Prevent A Plateau
Whether you’re trying to achieve weight loss or increase muscle and physical strength, performing the same routine repeatedly over a course of time, will only slow down your progress. This is because your body will become accustomed to the work out and its response to it will start to slow down. By challenging your body to new tasks, you force it to work harder. The results? You will burn more calories and increase muscle development as well as stamina.
· Boost your brain
Keeping fit through exercise does not only have to be beneficial for your body, but can also help keep your brain healthy. If we challenge ourselves to new tasks, the brain is also working by learning new skills. So, in essence you are killing two birds with one stone. By simply making adaptations from your usual routine you can have positive effects on both your body and mind.
Try something new today!
We have all heard that we should be drinking water regularly, but do we really know why? Let’s find out-
· To assist with weight loss
Drinking water before you eat can fill you up a little so that you are more inclined to eat less, therefore reducing your calorie intake. The zero calorie wonder can also increase metabolism and supress your appetite. So if your craving things that you know you should be keeping away from, whether it’s the sweet chocolate biscuits or the fat filled bacon sandwich- try reaching for a glass of H20 instead. Chances are, you won’t be feeling for any unnecessary snacks once you’ve had a glass of the good stuff. Drinking ice-cold water is also good for your weight loss, since your body will have to use calories whilst working hard to warm it up.
· Increased brain power
Not only is water good for your body, but it also does wonders for your brain as well. Since the brain is made up of around 75% water, it makes sense that drinking more of it will keep your mind healthy, alert and refreshed.
· Increased energy levels
Increasing your water intake will give your energy levels a real boost. Water is needed for your organs to function at the correct pace, which is why being de-hydrated can make you feel tired. Water is needed to help the body perform tasks such as flushing out waste and circulating nutrients around the body and in the blood.
· Improves appearance
Drinking water is great for the appearance of your skin. It can work wonders in terms of clearing spots and also reduces wrinkles! Not only is it good for your skin but drinking water can also make your eyes appear brighter. So there you have it, water has its benefits for you inside and out.
· Positive impact on immune system
As we mentioned earlier, water is needed for your body to function properly. When your body is working well, you are less likely to become ill or weak. Drinking good old H2O also keeps you clean. When your eyes and mouth are hydrated to the correct level, it means that dirt is washed out and infections will be prevented.
· Helps keep joints in good working order
Drinking water provides your joints with natural lubrication, preventing joint problems or assisting those with conditions such as arthritis to have relieved pressure.
· Natural medicine
The next time you have a headache, try drinking a glass of water before heading for the pill cabinet. Dehydration is a regular cause of headaches, so drinking water regularly will either prevent them from occurring in the first place or take away the pain, without the need for a paracetomol.
· A natural anti-depressant
Since we have summed up some of the main benefits, it makes sense that if you drink the correct amount of water you will feel great. With a fully functioning brain, no illness or fatigue, super energy levels and fantastic looking skin why wouldn’t you feel happy?
So there we have it- drink water to feel epic all round!
So many people struggle with their weight and can find it a real challenge to shed pounds. But the beautiful and amazing Amy Leigh Basheer has shown us that what might seem impossible is in actual fact possible. Amy has struggled with her weight for a long time, which has resulted in many health problems that made her concerned for her life. But, incredibly, Amy would not let her weight control her life and knew that something needed to be done. Fitness enthusiast and inventor of 'We Push Ducks' (WPD), Tyson Brown has been training and supporting Amy in making that dramatic difference so many people find challenging. She is here to tell us exactly how she overcame her struggles and how We Push Ducks is changing her life for the better. We hope that her story will inspire those who are facing the challenge of losing weight.
So Amy, what’s your favourite thing about WPD?
It’s the fact that it’s an activity rather than an exercise session, with the ducks they distract me. Before I met Tyson I tried numerous times to get fit again. I tried the gym but I didn’t have the stamina to keep it up, I went swimming but I always had to go with someone and when they would cancel, I wouldn’t go on my own. So there was always something that got in the way and stopped me. So I thought, what can I do to make it happen? So Tyson comes to me so I don’t have to go anywhere else. I pay him at the beginning of the week so I feel committed. It’s so fun and Tyson celebrates every success with me, it’s like he is more excited at my accomplishments than I am. He changes it up every week, it’s different exercises to keep it fresh.Tyson is constantly challenging the body.
What was your weight before your training with WPD and what do you weigh now?
125kg and now 114kg. I never thought I would see that kind of weight loss in such a short period of time. It comes off gradually, it’s not something fast, not some fad diet, it’s not anything like that. My whole body shape has changed as well. It’s sculpting and I’m getting a 6 pack, I thought with my belly that I’d never get a 6 pack, but it is coming, I can see it. Everything's possible!
How long ago did you start the training?
24 April 2014. I started off with only 3 sessions a week before my honeymoon. Then after my honeymoon I came back and upped it to 4 times a week. So it’s been 4 times a week every week and I'm committed to 4 times a week.
So you're recently married? Did being engaged have any effect on you wanting to lose weight?
Yes, it’s brand new! I got married in March. Most people just diet ridiculously to fit into their dress. My wedding was planned and done within 2 ½ weeks. So I had to bulk out to fit into my dress because there wasn't enough time for the alterations. So I didn't have to worry, I could eat as many burgers as I wanted! So then after the honeymoon, I felt big in my pictures, so I knew something needed to be done. I knew I didn't want to be in a class situation straight away because I wasn't confident enough. And in the first pictures of the WPD class I went to in Croydon, you can see that I'm standing far away from everyone else, almost not in the picture and hiding away. Now, the most recent pictures, I'm bang in the middle! Holding the mascot! Proud of my curves! It’s changed my outlook, it’s changed everything.
After the honeymoon, I felt big in my pictures, so I knew something needed to be done."
How hard was it at the beginning?
At the beginning? It’s still hard now! But the most amazing thing for me was that at the beginning I couldn't even hold up my own body weight and now Tyson has got me doing push-ups! I can now do 1 handed planks, side planks and I'm like, are you serious! Tyson changes the training all the time, he never lets me get comfortable. But every time he says, “OK what we’re going to do is this...” and I'm like “Yeah OK...” because I know in my head I can’t do it. But then I try it once and I fail, because it’s hard. But by the next time, I've done it because he makes me do it a couple of times and I get better at it. The first session I did where he assessed my fitness, I passed out at the end of it, literally fainted because it was so hard and I hadn't done exercise in so long. I made it to the end of the session and when it came to the stretches at the end, I just blacked out. I came round and I was in Tyson’s arms, crumpled on the floor and I asked did I fall asleep. I think at that moment, when I fainted it was like the biggest trust builder. Tyson saved me from falling face first onto a concrete floor. Tyson gives you little baby steps to get you where you want to be. I've noticed with Tyson that he never gives me something I'm not capable of doing, he trains you at a pace that you’re comfortable with, but I don’t realise how fast I'm developing.
What impact has WPD had on your life and did you ever feel like giving up at any point?
In the training session, there’s always... I call it my wall. I reach my wall quite quickly, just purely because I was so unfit before. Everything hurts before the warm up these days. But Tyson just keeps on at you, he is like a Nagging Nora. He says, “Come on, it’s just a duck! I just need that one to there... This is your exercise...” and I’m like, “They are ALL my exercises in this hour!” And he would say “Don’t get cocky or I’ll move that duck back.” So he knows what type of personality I have so he can dig at me like that, because he does what he has to do to get the most out of me in that session. He pushes me to be the best that I can be. He will show me the harder versions, so then I push myself to reach that harder version. Meeting Tyson Brown has changed my life. I was in a bad place, I had a bad diet, I had high blood pressure which I was on medication for, I had high cholesterol and I was huge. So meeting him and his brain child as I call it has saved my life and changed my life. I am a happier and healthier person for my husband, I'm going to stay on this planet longer than what I would have done, because I have met this man. And I just think how different my life would have been if I would have met him earlier. I would have been fitter sooner, not had the health repercussion I had before. I'm just glad I've met him now.
I am a happier and healthier person for my husband."
How long into the training did you start noticing a difference?
With my fitness and my strength, I started noticing a difference within a couple of weeks. With my body, I didn’t feel it myself, but people were saying my trousers were big and look at my little waist. And then I took my first before and after picture as soon as 6 weeks came. So I saw that much of a dramatic change in 6 weeks, that’s when Tyson said lets capture this moment.
Did anyone tell you it wasn't possible?
Everyone has been really supportive. I'm blessed to have such a great group of friends. Before the training sessions, they saw what such a bad place I was in and now they see such a dramatic difference in me and they know it's because of Tyson, it's because of WPD. So they are all really enthusiastic about it. They all support me, going through it, my parents, my nan. Everyone asks me when is my next training session. After every training session, I call my nan and say Tyson just killed me! And she asks me what I did this time and I tell her I did this and that and I did push ups!
At this moment, do you feel you’ve reached your goal?
No not yet. The first time Tyson met me, he asked me what my goal is. I said XYZ, I want to be a size 14, I want to be healthy, I want to be able to walk up my stairs without getting out of breath, I want to be able to cross my legs like this, because I couldn't before and now I can. And he said, "I'll hold your hand and we will get there together." And ever since, that is what he has done, exercise-wise, nutrition-wise, everything has been to help me gear me up to get to my goal, because he told me, he would get me there... together. And he is staying true to his word. Because I market WPD so much, there was one comment on my Facebook page that said, "I hope you're getting paid for this free marketing." and Tyson posted back saying "She's getting paid with an epic body!" And I said: This man is staying true to his words. That is priceless for me. No one else has ever put so much passion and effort into something that I wanted, my dream. And Tyson is making that dream come true. So this man, I owe him my life in my words, because he has just changed me beyond belief. Now I'm getting upset... (interview pauses). That's just how much a journey I've been on, in such a short period of time. With a man that is just so selfless and who just gets so much pleasure out of helping people and there needs to be more Tyson Brown's in this world. Everyone needs their own one. He's busy in the evenings... but during the days, everyone needs their own Tyson Brown.
That is priceless for me. No one else has ever put so much passion and effort into something that I wanted."
Have you worked with any other personal trainers before? If so, how do they compare?
Yes. When I used to go to the gym they sign you up and they take your measurements and they give you all these stupid machines and they say, do that for 20 minutes... do this for 20 minutes... do those weights for 20 minutes. I had absolutely no passion for it. I didn’t even get a level of engagement or motivation from it. You can keep on doing the same routine for a long period of time, but you won’t see the type of results you get from WPD. There’s a way to do it, but if you can’t reach that way yet, Tyson simplifies it and he makes it work for you until you can build up and be confident doing it the way it should be done. When I was able to support my own body weight, it was a major thing for me. I started at the stationary plank and I had to hold it, I can still only hold it for a minute, but before that I couldn’t even hold up my own body weight. Tyson lets you know how you are progressing and also that’s the great thing with the We Push Ducks mats itself. Because before when I was in the push up position moving the ducks around the mat, I could just get to the top colours... now I can get them to the bottom row. So that means that I can’t just only do the top, I can do the side and the bottom row now. So you can physically see the progress you make and how much better you’re getting.
People say that just to exercise can cost a lot of money these days. Do you feel WPD is worth the money?
Yes... a thousands, millions! I found money to do it. My husband always nags at me. He says, "You could take out a mortgage the amount your paying this man to train you." But then I say to him, you're reaping the benefits, I'm reaping the benefits... and we're going to live longer together, forever, thanks to all this work I'm putting in. My husband is a gym bunny. He cycles to work, cycles back home, goes to the gym in the morning before work. So he's really fit and the complete opposite to me. He always wanted me to get into fitness. I started off going to the park, boxing with him but I had absolutely no confidence. Everyone was looking at me, I hated the fat, so I would always find excuses. Going to the gym with him, I just thought great, I get to stand in front of more people, including you, sweating my face off, looking hideous, feeling like everyone's eyes are on me. I said to him, let me just do a few sessions a week with Tyson, to build my confident, build my fitness levels so that one day I can come to the gym with you, feel happy and confident to have a workout with you. So that's how the journey started and that's how I got the yes, because my husband supports me and sees the difference that this is making. He comes to Tyson’s classes with me and after every class he says, "I'm never coming again, this is so hard... everything hurts!" and then next week, he's there with me again, because he enjoys it. It's something different, it changes up his workout and he's there to support his wife. Just find a way to afford WPD, that's why he does the classes.. the classes are just £5 for 1 hour. What else can you get for £5 an hour? You can't even get a burger and chips for that. So if you can't afford a personal training session, go to a class!
Would you recommend WPD to others and how have you been spreading the WPD news?
I feel like an ambassador for WPD. On my Facebook page I put updates of my progress. And Tyson, busy as he is, always tries his hardest to comment on it. So they can see from both side that I'm telling the truth, she is actually doing it and is getting genuinely great feedback from this guy, this guy is genuinely excited. And Tyson will post random Facebook posts about WPD, about Amanda Lee and Amy Basheer... so that bit goes to everyone on my page, anything he posts I like and I share them. My push up videos, photos of these crazy ducks. I get loads of enquiries, asking how much it is, where's the training? How can I get him? Because they've seen what I do. Even in my hall I was just finishing my WPD session and Tyson was taking everything out of the car. My next door neighbour, who I don't even know said, "Oh are you a personal trainer?" Tyson started doing a demonstration of WPD in my hallway... which I then thought, hello, marketing... recorded it and posted it on Facebook and of course, it's him explaining what the workout is doing, the whole purpose of the exercise and stuff. So every opportunity for me of a picture... I even designed new t-shirts, with logos on it, because I am probably as passionate about WPD as he is. So yes, everyone should try it and I highly recommend it.
Do you have any final words to say about Tyson?
Instead of saying more stuff about Ty, I'm going to sum up 1 word... no 2... 3? Three words! Inspirational. Brother. Epic!
If Amy's interview has inspired you to get involved, please click here for information on our 1-2-1 sessions and fitness classes.
- Team We Push Ducks