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All Inclusive Luxury Fitness Retreat at Silver Field Villa

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Charlie and Nate are super excited to have put together this exciting all inclusive, luxury retreat, hosted at the Silver Field Villa which is based at the foot of the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range 31st October – 5th November 2019.

The house its self is a super modern, contemporary building boasting an outstanding range of facilities including two gyms, an indoor and an outdoor swimming pool, sauna, games room and luxury bedrooms. We have worked hard to put together an exciting few days to make a unique and memorable holiday.

We have worked hard to put together an exciting few days to make a unique and memorable holiday.
The Retreat is perfect for sociable individuals, couples or groups of friends who love sun, outdoors and fitness. There is no fitness level requirements to come away on the retreat and all sessions are optional to participate in. We have a range of luxury suites and rooms which vary in price to suit your budget.
  • Hosted by Charlie Francis and Nate Evans
  • Fully Equipped Outdoor CrossFit Style Gym
  • Morning yoga on the balcony
  • 5* accommodation in Granada, Spain, including 2x swimming pools, sauna and a cinema
  • Bike tours and hiking
  • Excursion to the city
  • Healthy food by The Cornish Lunch Box
  • Supplements by Prozis

Click to download the brochure for all information

Why Sleep is Important for Fitness

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Sleep is vital for recovery and hormone balance such as reducing cortisol levels. With out optimal sleep we can say good bye to fat loss and muscle gain..

The 8 hour rule of sleep is just a random number thrown about for how much sleep we need. We actually need 90 minutes to get through a full sleep cycle. That included stages of light and deep sleep which are critical for recovery of an athlete.

You should aim for 5 sleep cycles every 24 hours which totals 7.5 hours a day. This is usually enough for the average person. A high level athlete might add another sleep cycle a day to aid recovery.

These 5 sleep cycles would ideally be taken through the night, although that is not essential. You could have 4 through the night and an extra 90 minute nap in the day if thats more convenient for you.

This totals 35 sleep cycles a week. If you don’t feel better after a week of 35 cycles. Increase to 6 cycles a day. Or if 5 feels too much. Decrease to 4 cycles a day. Everyone is different!

Max’s Before and After Transformation

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BEFORE

AFTER

Wednesday 15th July 2015 – 8 weeks ago….an unfit, unmotivated 55 year old plonked herself into Charlie’s hands. I wasn’t really a gym fan I actually hated going to the gym, pulling and pushing bits of machinery or jumping on and off a treadmill or cross trainer was my idea of hell. Unfortunately or I suppose fortunately a rickety back and an endless list of aches and pains made me realise I needed to make big changes. That’s when Charlie came to my rescue, she set out a food and nutritional plan which made me look at making healthier choices with my diet. Along with the food plan she set out an exercise/fitness program that I could easily use both at home and at the gym, her famous butt busting squats, stretches and lifting an Olympic bar, I can’t believe that I’m now the very proud owner of my own bar!
After only 8 weeks I find myself using gym equipment that I would never ever have gone near before let alone use. I feel fitter and healthier with so much more energy and no more aches and pains, Charlie always finds something new and exciting for you to try she’s tough on you, that’s why she’s really good at her job. I still find every session hard and tomorrow my feeble arms will be aching like mad unlike before I now enjoy, and when you hear her say “I want 10 more of those” …. you could cry …… this girl knows her stuff….. a brilliant motivator and mentor….she gets her 10 more ……and that’s such a good feeling.

Thank you Charlie you have brought the love of exercise back into my life x

Protein Cheese Cake

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September/October are my absolute fave months for Cornish weather. The beaches are empty and the sky is actually blue (most days). Cold evenings with cheese cake on the sofa. Crisp mornings with pink sunrise sky is the most beautiful thing! The sea remains warm after the heat of the summer sun… Everyone cracks on with their new healthy lifestyle while secretly still craving cider on the beach and pizza.

When people make efforts to change their lifestyle, they try to do everything they possibly can all at once.

One of my clients recently said: ‘I’m starting my new routine tomorrow..  I’m going to drink 5 litres of water a day, walk the dogs for an hour, do yoga, go to the gym, have a kale smoothie for breakfast, chicken, rice and broccoli for lunch and dinner every day and DEFIANTLY no cookies and no alcohol and no fun, no sugar………’ 

Hold up!!

Going in with this attitude is going to make you miserable, sore, tired and fed up after 3 days max. Cutting out all the best food and trying to up your training level by 200% in one week is a recipe for disaster. After a few days you will end up fucking off the idea of going to the gym because your sore and grumpy.. you will find your self heading for the fridge to demolish a whole cheese cake (an unhealthy one), followed by a pack of cookies, thinking ‘I have ruined it now so I may as well eat everything’…. hours later on a sugar low slumped on the sofa, covered in chocolate and surrounded by empty wrappers.

Don’t be this person. Take one step at a time.

If cheese cake is your favourite food. Eat cheese cake. Eating a small amount twice a week is not going to make you fat, trust me.. But even better, find a substitute. I make protein cheese cake all the time which has no sugar, no bad fats and no preservatives.

PER SERVING:

263 Calories

14.2g Fat

17.2g Carbs (of which 7g insoluble fiber)

20.8g Protein

Protein Cheese Cake

Serves 12

Ingredients:

Base:

  • 2tbsp Stevia
  • 100g Oats
  • 30g PB2
  • 100g MyProtein Casein
  • 100g Cashew Butter
  • 85g VitaFiber Syrup
  • 100g Cacao Butter

Filling:

  • 75g MyProtein Casein
  • 180g (one tub) Light, Lightest philidelphia
  • 5-6 White Chocolate Drops (to taste)
  • Pinch of salt
  • Enough water to make a thick consistency

Topping:

  • Choc Shot
  • 2x Packs Quest Peanut Butter Cups

Directions:

  • Pre heat the oven to 170 degrees. Melt the cacao butter in a pan or microwave. While the cacao butter is melting, put all dry ingredients in a blender and blend to achieve a flour like consistency. Add the vitafiber syrup, cashew butter and cacao butter and blend again until all combined. Press the base mixture into greased, shallow, circular baking tray (I’m sure another shape would also be fine!!). Bake for 5 minutes (yes 5 minutes.. no longer)
  • For the filling. Place the Casein, Flavour Drops in a bowl and slowly add water until a thick paste is made. Make sure not to make it too runny. If you tipped the bowl up the mixture should stay put. Add the Philadelphia and stir until all combined. If you need it to be sweeter add more drops now.
  • For the topping chop up all Quest Peanut Butter Cups
  • Once the base has cooled. remove it from the pan..
  • Add the filling and top with the Peanut Butter Quest Cups and a drizzle of Choc Shot 😛

Notes:

Try adding other toppings or different flavour drops.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pulled Chicken Tacos with Baked Corn

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Mexican is my all time fave cuisine.. Although some how I have never quite been able to recreate healthy versions of the tacos you get in restaurants.

With years of faffing around with different pulled chicken recipes for my tacos, making the BBQ sauce from scratch and one time trying to boil the chicken (VOM), It has always been a massive fail.

Until…. I finally found the most easy recipe which ..no I haven’t made from scratch, but its so easy and quick I don’t really care! It might not be quite as good as the oil laden, high fat shit you get it restaurants…  BUTTTT, its a great healthy alternative which is low in fat so perfect for a post workout meal. Its super awesome for meal prep and freezes well too 😀

Ingredients:

serves 8

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 140 degrees celsius

Place the chicken breasts (whole), garlic (chopped fine), onion (chopped fine) and bottle of BBQ sauce in a large oven proof pot with a lid OR a slow cooker. Cook for 2 hours then reduce the heat to 120 degrees celsius for a further hour. (if cooking in a slow cooker, cook on high for 1 hour and low for 2-3 hours)

Once cooked for 3 hours, remove all chicken breasts from the pot/slow cooker and shred each breast with 2 forks.

Slowly whisk all the corn four into the sauce left in the pot/slow cooker. Once all the corn flour is mixed in and the sauce has thickened slightly, put the chicken back in and mix sauce and chicken together. Place in oven again at 140 degrees celsius for a further 30 minutes (or leave on low in slow cooker for a further 30 mins).

While you wait for the chicken, place the sweetcorn on an oven tray, coat with little salt and pepper and a drizzle of olive oil. Bake for 20-30 mins on 140 degrees celsius.

I personally like my tacos kinda toasty. The easiest way to do this is to grill, maybe 3-4 tacos at a time under a low-medium heat for 30-60 seconds on each side. Make sure you watch close to see they don’t burn.

Finally, everything is cooked so to serve, wack the BBQ chicken on one of the toasty tacos, top with a little salad, a blob of sour cream and a sprinkle of coriander. Serve with the baked sweet corn on the side and boom… Healthy, fast, easy tacos which you can make at home, when ever you like 😀

Notes:

Try serving with baked sweet potato instead of tacos 😛

 

 

 

Get The Basics Right

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People are very uneducated on how much of an impact nutrition can have on their training and body composition. I love the quote ‘Nutrition can make a good athlete great, and a great athlete good’. A person could be a potential olympic gold medalist but due to a shitty lifestyle and poor nutrition they are just an average joe.

The full potential of any person will never be achieved with poor nutrition.

Its simple really..  train hard, eat clean, stay hydrated, recover well. You MUST get the basics right before faffing around with anything else. The amount of people who ask me ‘what exercise can I do to get a flat stomach‘. If I were to ask that person. ‘how many hours do you sleep at night‘.. ‘how many pints of water do you drink a day‘ or ‘how much junk food do you eat in a week‘.. They might not realise how much of an impact that has on them getting a flat stomach.

You can do all the ab exercises in the world and eat crappy food, sleep 4 hours a night and be dehydrated and NEVER get a flat stomach..

The body is like a machine working on cogs and if one of the essential cogs isn’t working then the whole system won’t work as efficiently and optimally as possible. As a nutrition coach I always consider the bigger picture and never take a one size fits all approach for clients. Each person comes with different problems and stresses. Everyone has different lifestyles and are all educated in fitness, health and nutrition to a different level.

 

 

Psychology is always over looked. External factors should always be taken into consideration such as home life and stress, as well as how lifestyle impacts the way you eat. The group you may socialise with will have a massive impact on your diet and lifestyle. If your family or friends have a very unhealthy diet and poor nutrition, this is going to negatively impact your ability to stay on track.

Your mind set will always affect what you achieve. You must set goals that you believe in and know you can achieve to ensure you are always motivated. Along with mindset, it is essential to debunk myths to make sure you do not have incorrect knowledge from online forums or magazine articles.

Most women think that lifting weights and eating high protein diets will make them ‘massive’ or ‘bulky’. People may also believe that skipping meals and using fad diets will help them to loose weight. Knowledge is Power. Ensure your facts are from a reliable source. Not Heat Magazine!!

Genetics must always be considered. How one person metabolises fats and carbs will be different to another due to genetics and lifestyle. I love the quote.. ‘Genetics loads the gun, lifestyle pulls the trigger’. When you claim you are over weight because of genetics, its important to remember your lifestyle will MASSIVELY contribute to the fact you are over weight. Genetics can never be purely to blame.

The key to success is consistency. Its better to be 80% good 100% of the time than be 100% good 20% of the time. We all know that person who will go on a juicing diet and smash the gym only to burn out after a few weeks and call it a day for another 3 months! Don’t be that person!

Before you fill your diet with fat burners, weight loss shakes and fucking juicing diets (don’t get me started on juice diets). Get the BASICS right! Start going to bed at a reasonable time and recover well. Train hard and smart. Master your daily diet and drink plenty of water. The most important thing is to achieve good and consistent daily habits and behaviours! Create lasting lifestyle choices to make a better YOU!

 

If you liked this article check out my post on ‘Clean Eating Is Ruining Your Life

 

Summer Superfood Salad

By News

When most people think of salad, they think of the pathetic portion of old lettuce leaves with tomato and cucumber that you get as a ‘side salad’ in some restaurants. People say ‘I hate salad’… Well of course your going to bloody hate salad if you have always eaten really bad salads.

Salad is an amazing way to pack heaps of amazing veggies into one meal and make it super yum at the same time.

Summer Superfood Salad

Ingredients:

serves 1

Salad:

  • 200g sweet potato (can be substituted for beetroot, butternut squash, carrot, or parsnip)
  • 1/2 a bag (125g) of cooked mixed quinoa (can be substituted for rice)
  • 100g cooked chicken breast (can be substituted for any other meat or fish)
  • 1 handful of brocilli
  • 1 handful of asparagus
  • 1 courgette
  • 5 raddishes
  • 1/2 cup sprouted mung beans (I sprout my self but you can buy in shops)
  • 50g low fat feta cheese (can be substituted for goats cheese or halloumi)
  • 1/2 an avocado

Dressing:

  • 1tsp cashew butter
  • 1tsp harissa paste
  • 1tbsp sweet chilli sauce
  • 1tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 3tbsp lemon juice

Directions:

Chop the sweet potato and place on a baking tray with a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Place in a pre heated oven at 160 degrees for approx 1.5 hours.. Turning as cooking. (I like my sweet potato super cooked). When the sweet potato is almost ready you can prep the rest of the salad.

Place the broccoli and the asparagus into a steamer and cook until only just soft. Once cooked place to the side to cool

Spiralize the courgette to make courgetti. If you don’t have a spiralizer you can simply grate the courgette.

Slice the radishes into super thin slices using a peeler or a long grater.

Cut the feta and chicken into little cubes or slices

For the dressing combine all ingredients in a bowl or better a small blender and mix/blend until smooth.

The avocado.. God this bit is hard. If you cut the avocado in half then leaving half in the skin you cut strips to around 3/4 of the way down. You then carefully remove the skin of the avocado and fan the slices out to make it look super pretty. Failing this.. if you don’t care so much how its going to look. Just chop it into cubes.

The quinoa can be hot of cold depending on your preference.

Finally once the sweet potato has cooked, combine the sweet potato, quinoa, broccoli, asparagus, courgetti, radish, mung beans and feta in a bowl and lightly mix being careful not to squish it.

Put the mixed salad onto a plate and top with the chicken and fanned out avocado followed by the dressing.

Enjoy 😀

Notes:

Try using different greens, different roast veg and different meats. This salad also works well with a satay dressing

 

 

 

 

Protein Oreo Cookies

By News

I am an imperfect human with a list of insecurities large enough to write a book with. I am trying my very hardest to be the best I can be, to please others, and achieve everything I want in life. I have days where Im straight up slaying… Left, right and centre killing it. Im constantly trying to juggle a million things at once, sometimes that goes to okay and sometimes, something fucks up which causes everything to come crashing down. At this point, I either scuttle away to have a little cry in the corner or panic and try to pick up the pieces.

Im telling you this right now because everyone is in the same boat. Every one has train wreck days where you want to go back to bed and start over, and everyone has days which are so perfect you want to dance all day like a diva.

However perfect other peoples lives may look, they still have days which are a royal fuck up. They still has days where they sit in bed crying eating bacon sandwiches and doughnuts.

Its OKAY to fuck up. Its NORMAL to have bad days.

Just keep being awesome and keep grinding 😀

 

Oreo Protein Cookies

Makes 8

Ingredients:

For the cookie:

  • 130g Raw Cacao Powder
  • 50g Vanilla Casein
  • 250g Vita Fiber Syrup

For the filling:

  • 100g Cashew Butter
  • 15g PB2
  • 15g Vanilla Casein
  • 40g Vita Fiber Syrup
  • 3 Drops Vanilla Flavour Drops

Directions:

Pre heat the oven to 160 degrees celsius. Mix all cookie ingredients together and form 16 small disk shape cookies. Put cookies in the oven for 5-7 minutes (yes they cook very quickly)

While the cookies are cooking mix all filling ingredients together. Once the cookies have cooked down, blob the filling onto half the cookies and top with the other half of the cookie.

Notes:

Try not to eat them all at once 😀

 

Why You Shouldn’t Strive For Body Perfection

By News

I was quite shocked when a bloke in the gym says ‘Oh Charlie you’ve put on weight’.
After being taken back for a moment I replied ‘Yes I have put on weight; I’m trying to gain muscle
The man says ‘Oh is that what people do now is it?’
I replied ‘Well that’s what I want to do yes’
I shouldn’t have, but I felt pretty shit about myself after the comment he made. Maybe in his eyes I looked worse? Or was he just stating an unnecessary fact to make me feel like shit? Who knows?
My goal at the time was to increase muscle mass and strength so yes I had gained weight. I had gone from an unhealthy 10% body fat with a flat chest, zero hips and messed up hormones, to a healthier, happier 18% body fat with an increased muscle mass and metabolism.
I personally want thick thighs and a bubble butt. Some girls want a thigh gap and skinny legs. Some people are more than happy to be a little overweight. That is fine! Everyone is different. Isn’t that the point? The world would sure be a fucking boring place if we all looked the same.
What is perfect? Perfection is stupid and no matter what you do in life you will never be perfect. Nobody is perfect! We have this idea of perfect in our minds which we constantly strive for yet do you know anyone that ever gets to the point where they say ‘I’m perfect now’.. Maybe a few arrogant ass holes but really they have self esteem issues behind closed doors.

 

Here are 7 reasons body perfection sucks:

1. Nobody’s perfect is the same
My idea of ‘perfect’ will be completely different to yours. I aspire to look like strong girls with muscle where as you may aspire to look like Kim Kardashian? Or Keira Knightley..
2. Perfectionism brings upon negative emotion
Perfectionism brings upon self-doubt, depression, social anxiety and fear of rejection. Perfectionist often set the bar too high and never hit these unrealistic achievements.
3. Perfectionist don’t have a middle ground
Perfectionist either need something to be 100% or nothing at all. They will either have a perfect gram for gram macro counted diet, or binge eat all the junk food. They will either kill themselves in the gym or not bother going at all. There is no acceptance of the middle ground which is actually the healthiest place to be.
4. You will never be perfect so you will never be happy
‘I will be happy when I have a thigh gap’… ‘ I will be happy when I have abs’.. Trust me, you won’t be happy. You will always set the bar higher. You will hit your goal, gain your abs, reach your body fat percentage, yet you will still find flaws in yourself which need to be improved. You will never be happy living this way.
5. Negative hunter
Being a perfectionist makes you hunt out the bad things which need to be improved. It will push you to find the not so perfect things in everything.. family, colleagues and partners . This can really affect your relationships with people as you are constantly looking for the negative things in them.
6. Increased body fat
The perfectionist is usually a stress head, constantly striving for perfection. This will increase the levels of cortisol (stress hormone) in your system which will cause fat retention and muscle loss.
7. You are not perfect
Lastly, you are not perfect. Nobody’s perfect. You will never be perfect. Learn that you are a human not a robot and sometimes things don’t always go 100% the way you want them too. Accept that and allow yourself to be okay with 90% some of the time rather than beating yourself up.
“You are not your bra-size, nor are you the width of your waist, nor are you the slenderness of your calves. You are not your hair colour, your skin colour, nor are you a shade of lipstick. Your shoe-size is of no consequence. You are not defined by the amount of attention you get from males, females, or any combination thereof. You are not the number of sit-ups you can do, nor are you the number of calories in a day. You are not your moustache. You are not the hair on your legs. You are not a little red dress.
You are no amalgam of these things.
You are the content of your character. You are the ambitions that drive you. You are the goals that you set. You are the things that you laugh at and the words that you say. You are the thoughts you think and the things you wonder. You are beautiful and desirable not for the clique you attend, but for the spark of life within you that compels you to make your life a full and meaningful one. You are beautiful not for the shape of the vessel, but for the volume of the soul it carries.”
— Unknown