6 Tips To Avoid A Winter Workout Rut

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Brrrrrr, the winter weather is certainly on its way! I’ve felt a real drop in temperature this week, especially when getting up at 5:30am for boot camp.

Even for the fittest people out there, training is more of a challenge when the colder weather and darker nights set in.

Staying in front of the fire with a mug of hot chocolate can be much more tempting than pounding the pavements on a cold winters night.

But that’s certainly not going to help your waistline or energy levels.

Have a look at these 6 tips to avoid a winter workout rut so you can continue to make good progress over the next few months.


  1. Embrace the Cold Weather

Wrap up warm and get out there! Appreciate the crisp air, its invigorating and you’ll feel great once the workout is done. Getting out and being active certainly has more benefits than wrapping yourself in a blanket and eating chocolates all night.

  1. Invest in Some New Training Gear

I don’t know about you, but when I get some new training gear I can’t wait to try it out. Whether it’s a new pair of trainers, a new jacket, or a new smart watch it gives me extra motivation. It makes you feel good, and you want to make your monetary investment worthwhile. You don’t have to spend a fortune, just make sure it’s fit for purpose.

  1. Get a Training Partner

Training with a friend is one of the best ways to increase accountability. Making the commitment to train with someone, whether it’s a friend or personal trainer, often forces a different, increased level of effort in your training. If you’re exercising with someone else, that means you’ll have to keep to more of a set schedule (no more putting off the gym at the last minute), you’ll be pushing each other to achieve more and you’ll probably have a much better time getting fit than you’d have alone.

  1. Refresh Your Workout Playlists

The same as new clothing, new music can make you feel good and give you some extra motivation. So, take some time to set up a new workout playlist. Upbeat, fast music is the best to workout with because it can make you work faster.

Another thing that I enjoy is listening to audio books while I’m running. I normally opt for self-help, or educational business books so I can combine learning with exercise.

  1. Overhaul Your Diet

Winter is when most people stay in, warm up and eat rich foods and more alcohol. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but the saying is true… ‘You can’t out-train a bad diet.’ Keep that in mind, and also know that the good thing about being more active is that you’ll be more conscious of what you’re putting into your body since you won’t want to undo all of that hard work.

  1. Try Something Completely New

Doing something new will force you to be fully focused on the activity, helping you stay away from boredom. Whether it’s kettle bell training, yoga, CrossFit, boot camp style workouts or something else, just get some good instruction and take this challenging time of year and make it into a learning experience.


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This workout is relatively low intensity. You’ll not be very out of breath, but it will really challenge your core! And that’s great because the stronger your core, the easier other exercises like burpees and press will be 💪

Complete 4 rounds for a full workout, or do 1 round at the end of your gym sessions to give your core a quick blast.

45 seconds CROSSOVERS
15 seconds rest
45 seconds V-SITS
15 seconds rest
45 seconds PLANK GET UPS
15 seconds rest
15 seconds rest
15 seconds rest
45 seconds LEG RAISES

60 seconds rest

Complete another 3 rounds. (4 in total).


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This workout is relatively low impact so is easy on your joints. But it will raise your heart rate and get you burning lots of calories…

15 seconds rest
45 seconds JOG ON SPOT
15 seconds rest
45 seconds SIDE STEPS
15 seconds rest
45 seconds JABS
15 seconds rest
45 seconds SHUTTLES
15 seconds rest
45 seconds SQUAT FLYES
60 seconds rest

Complete another 3 rounds. (4 in total).

Total workout time = 27 minutes.

30/15 Full Body HIIT

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This workout consists of 8 exercises. Perform each one for 30 seconds with a 15 seconds break in between.


30 seconds PRESS UPS
15 seconds rest
30 seconds WALKOUTS
15 seconds rest
30 seconds SQUAT LEAPS X2
15 seconds rest
30 seconds LUNGES
15 seconds rest
30 seconds CROSSOVERS
15 seconds rest
15 seconds rest
30 seconds SHUTTLE RUN
15 seconds rest
60 seconds rest

Repeat another 3 rounds of the above. Total workout time = 27 minutes.


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This 6 week programme is the first of its kind for East Coast Fitness!

I have combined PERSONAL TRAINING and BOOT CAMP into one programme.

You get the best of both worlds; the infectious motivation of group training, and the tailored precision of personal training.

The group training gives you an infectious motivation to push yourself. And the Personal Training can be tailored to work specifically on your problematic areas.

After the 6 weeks you can expect to feel stronger, fitter and leaner! You’ll definitely feel better in your party clothes!

The start date is flexible, but if you start this week, or next it will take you up to mid December – Just in time for the Party Season.

The 6 week programme Includes:

🔸 1 PT session a week 
🔸 2 Boot Camp sessions a week 
🔸 Weekly Nutrition plans 
🔸 Recipes
🔸 Weekly Weigh ins 
🔸 Motivation & Support

Only £199 for 6 weeks!

Suitable for ALL fitness levels. 
Suitable for ALL ages. 
Suitable for Men and Women.

If you want more info or to book your place call me on 07875548880

6 Ways To Prevent Diabetes

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World Diabetes Day – 14th November 2017

November 14th marks World Diabetes Day and this year the International Diabetes Federation is focussing on women with diabetes as it’s theme.
The campaign is being backed by all major health organisations to draw attention to the issues especially attributed to diabetes and to keep the disease firmly in the public spotlight.
Here in Sunderland I feel it’s important for everyone to get involved and promote prevention of Type 2 Diabetes and help prevent future generations of women suffering from the disease.
There are currently over 199 million women living with diabetes and this total is projected to increase to 313 million by 2040. Obesity is the most potent risk factor for Type 2 Diabetes and is the biggest cause for the spread of the condition.
It’s only through a shared effort and responsibility that we can get the numbers to fall. Healthy living and exercise is still the best way to treat and prevent Type 2 Diabetes and all the health complications associated with it.
Across Great Britain, only 29 per cent of women are meeting recommended physical activity levels so it’s crucial to start to reverse the tide and prevent diabetes from affecting more people this way.
Over the course of my personal training career I’ve helped lots of people manage their diabetes more effectively, in most cases drastically reducing their medication. I’m happy to talk to anyone who has been diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes recently and offer some free advice on the positive changes they can make to their life starting today. To get in touch email me at


These 6 Tips can help you avoid Type 2 diabetes:

1.    Cut Sugar & Refined Carbs from Your Diet
Eating foods high in refined carbs and sugar increases blood sugar and insulin levels, which may lead to diabetes over time. Avoiding foods like sweets, biscuits, chocolate, cakes, sweetened yoghurts, white bread, white rice, pasta and white potatoes may help reduce your risk.


2.    Workout Regularly 
Performing physical activity on a regular basis can increase insulin secretion and sensitivity, which may help prevent the progression from prediabetes to diabetes.


3.    Drink More Water 
Drinking water instead of other beverages may help control blood sugar and insulin levels, thereby reducing the risk of diabetes.


4.    Lose Weight If You’re Overweight or Obese
Carrying excess weight, particularly in the abdominal area, increases the likelihood of developing diabetes. Losing weight can significantly reduce the risk of diabetes.


5.    Eat Sensible Portion Sizes
Avoiding large portion sizes can help reduce insulin and blood sugar levels and decrease the risk of diabetes.


6.    Avoid Sedentary Behaviours
Avoiding sedentary behaviours like excessive sitting has been shown to reduce your risk of getting diabetes. If you have a desk job, make sure you do some exercise before or after work. Don’t go home and sit on the sofa all night.

What a Night!

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What a night!

It was such an honour to be shortlisted in the prestigious Sunderland Echo Portfolio awards and to share the stage with so many of the city’s brilliant businesses.

I still can’t believe we won an award for the second year in a row!

Although it’s the ‘Sole Trader of the Year’ Award, it’s recognition for EVERYONE involved at East Coast Fitness.

PT clients and Boot Camp members; winning this award would not have been possible without you! And I’m lucky to work with such a lovely bunch of people. I’d like to thank every single one of you for your hard work and commitment you show every day.

I’d also like to thank my family for your your unending support. Val Ellison for all of your help with social media, and your amazing baking skills! The work you do really helps bring the boot camp group together and creates a friendly, family environment for everyone. Thanks to Paul Barron for filling in for me when I’m away. And a special mention to Caroline for being there to support me 24/7.

Helping people get fit and improve their health is my passion and I’ll continue to help as many people as possible. Here’s to another fantastic year at East Coast Fitness! 

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Beginners 30/15 HIIT

This workout is relatively low impact for your joints, but it is intense enough to raise your heart rate and burn hundreds of calories. The exercises will target all parts of your body and help you lose body fat. 

It consists of 8 exercises. Perform each one for 30 seconds with a 15 seconds break in between. (You’ll need a weight or a heavy object for the tricep extensions).

30 seconds ASSISTED PRESS UPS (use a kitchen bench dining table) 
15 seconds rest
15 seconds rest
30 seconds SQUATS
15 seconds rest
30 seconds ASSISTED LUNGES (use a kitchen bench dining table)
15 seconds rest
30 seconds CRUNCHES
15 seconds rest
30 seconds PLANK
15 seconds rest
15 seconds rest
30 seconds SPRINTS

60 seconds rest


Repeat another 3 rounds of the above.

The Benefits of Morning Exercise and 7 Tips To Help Get You Into A Routine.

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Exercising early in the morning offers lots benefits, both to your health and to your daily schedule:

Boost Your Metabolism

When you workout at high intensity your body continues to burn calories after the workout, even when you’re not moving. So, if you get your workout done early on a morning, you’ll still be burning calories while sitting at your work desk.

Workout Consistency

Working out in the morning ensures that you don’t interrupt your workout schedule with other daily issues that crop up. For example, if you exercise in the evening you run the risk of being late from work, feeling overwhelmed with tasks that must be done, or overloaded with other unexpected to-do items. Other times you may simply feel too tired to exercise by the end of a long day. But, in the morning there is nothing to distract you from getting your workout done. Exercise will be your priority.

Improve Your Physical and Mental Energy

Movement can be an excellent source of energy, something many of us need when we start our day. But beyond that, morning exercise has been shown to improve focus and mental abilities all day long. Not only will you feel awake and have more energy after your workout, but your mind will be ready to take on whatever tasks you have lined up that day.

Develop Strong Self-Discipline

Waking up early on a morning to exercise certainly requires self-discipline. It’s not easy at first and does get easier over time. But while you’re training yourself into a routine, the discipline is likely to spill over into other areas of your life too.

Get Better Sleep

Waking up early in the morning to exercise will in turn help you sleep better. Your body will enjoy a healthy sense of fatigue at the end of the day and will be ready to sleep.

Improve Your Mood and Feel Happier.

Once you’re into a morning routine, your metabolism is boosted, your body is looking and feeling better, you’re sleeping well at night, and your mind is sharper and more alert than ever; you’re bound to feel happier!


Making morning exercise part of your daily routine isn’t easy at first. You will have to be disciplined to wake up early. But it just takes a little time and practice to make it a habit. Here’s seven tips to help you get started:

  1. Go to Bed Earlier
    It goes without saying, if you go to bed late, you’re going to struggle getting up early. Aim to get 7-8 hours of rest a night. So, if you want to be up at 6pm, make sure you’re in bed no later than 10pm.
  2. Prepare
    Lay out your workout gear in the bathroom the night before. Have your running shoes ready at the door. Music playlist ready.
  3. Move Your Alarm
    Set your alarm clock and then move it away from your arms reach, so that you have to get up out of bed to turn it off.
  4. Shower
    As soon as the alarm goes off, jump up turn it off, and get in the shower. Quickly shower and clean your teeth. This will wake you up straight away. Then get dressed with the workout clothes that should be laid out from the night before.
  5. Drink Water
    Before you leave the house drink a glass of water to hydrate your body.
  6. Keep Your Workout Short but Intense
    It’s not easy getting out of bed if you know you have to go through a 60-90 minute workout. Instead, complete a 20-30 minute HIIT style workout to get it done and out of the way quicker. Psychologically it makes getting up easier, plus HIIT style workouts are going to burn calories all day!
  7. Rehydrate & Refuel
    Drink more water and eat a healthy breakfast as soon as possible after your workout. This part is even easier if you prepare your breakfast the night before too. Overnight oats are my favourite; tasty, nutritious and saves me time on a morning.

7 Minute Ab Finisher

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Try this Ab Finisher at the end of your workout. A great way to tighten and tone your stomach muscles and it’s done in 7 minutes…


20 seconds CRUNCHES

20 seconds BICYCLE ABS

20 seconds FROG SIT UPS


20 seconds FLUTTER KICKS

20 seconds rest

X 3

Watch the video demo before you start the workout…


  • Timetable & Booking


    Date: Monday & Friday
    Time: 06:00 – 06:45
    Venue: Seaham Youth Centre (Strangford Road, Seaham, SR7 8QE)
    Price: £30 for 4 week block booking / £85 for 12 week block booking (saving £5) / £160 for 24 week block booking (saving £20)

    Morning Boot Camp – Seaham


    Date: Tuesday & Thursday
    Time: 18:30 – 19:30
    Venue: Seaham Sea Front – meet in Tonias Cafe car park (North Road, Seaham, SR7 7AG)
    Price: £30 for 4 week block booking / £85 for 12 week block booking (saving £5) / £160 for 24 week block booking (saving £20)

    Evening Boot Camp – Seaham


    Date: Sunday
    Time: 10:00 – 11:00
    Venue: Seaham Leisure Centre (Deneside Recreation Ground, Seaham, SR7 8NP)
    Price: £5 per session