Drink in the Benefits of World Plant Milk Day 2019



Vegan? Lactose intolerant or dairy-free for health reasons? If you’re a fan of almond or soya milk in your coffee or you prefer a dollop of coconut milk on your cornflakes, then the upcoming World Plant Milk Day is perfect for you. On August 22, 2019 the organisers of this annual non-dairy milk extravaganza are encouraging you to ‘do your body good and do the world good’ by avoiding dairy milk and try one of the many plant-based milk alternatives.

As part of a general food trend in the UK towards vegan foodstuffs, plant milks are increasingly popular. You no longer have to search for coconut milk in your local health food shop; alternative plant milks or mylks are widely available in every supermarket. To celebrate World Plant Milk Day at Xercise4Less Gyms we want to have a closer look at how popular dairy alternatives can fit into your health and fitness plans. 

How Non-Dairy Milk is Good for You

Nutritionally, non-dairy milks have a lot to recommend them. Plant milk is a good and sustainable alternative to dairy milk and even brings some added health and wellbeing benefits. Research has shown that a wholefood, plant-based diet that includes plant milk can help prevent obesity, diabetes, heart disease, hypertension and even some kinds of cancer.

Avoid dairy milk and cows won’t be crying as plant milks are simply better for animal welfare. The methods of the dairy industry cause huge stress to the bovine population. Drinking soya lattes is also better for the human population and the planet as animal agriculture causes major greenhouse gas emissions. Dairy farming also requires more extensive land usage than growing plants so any reduction in dairying means more sustainable agriculture to feed the world’s ever-expanding population. Non-dairy alternatives are also a veritable land of milk and honey with an incredible range of plant milks from almond to hemp to cashew and quinoa milk. With this range of dairy free drinks continuing to grow, it couldn’t be simpler to make non-dairy milk part of your nutritional plan.

But which type of plant milk should you go for on World Plant Milk Day? 

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The Cream of the Plant Milk Crop

We’ve gone from having soya milk as the only real alternative to dairy to an overwhelming number of plant-based milks currently available in UK supermarkets:

  • Soya milk – The original plant milk is the most nutritionally similar to cow’s milk. Moderate in calories, soya milk is a good source of protein and calcium and is delicious as a cooking ingredient or in coffee.
  • Almond milk – One of the most popular non-dairy alternatives, almond milk is rich in nutrients and contains powerful antioxidants against cancer and heart disease. Perfect for pouring over cereal.
  • Rice milk – Nut and gluten free and extremely low in calories, rice milk is naturally sweet and ideal for baking. It also makes a refreshing drink on its own.
  • Oat milk – Oat milk has more protein and fibre than most plant-based alternatives but also more carbohydrates and sugar. Oat milk has the least impact on the environment of all the various plant milks.
  • Coconut milk – Rich in iron, potassium, magnesium, and zinc lauric acid, coconut milk boosts your immune system and is used extensively in cooking and baking. It’s pretty good in a cup of coffee too.
  • Cashew milk – The creamy cashew milk is also perfect for coffee and tea as it doesn’t have a strong taste. Porridge lovers will really milk this non-dairy alternative dry. 

Which is your favourite?

A Key Part of Your Exercise Plan

When you join an Xercise4Less gym you soon realise the importance we place on getting your nutrition and diet right as part of your overall fitness programme. If you are looking to get fit, maintain your current weight or lose weight, a varied diet including plant milks is the best way to nourish a healthy body.

Let us plant the idea with you then of our incredible Body Transformation Camps. Our 8 week gym programme for men and women of every fitness level completely changes old habits and diets and creates new healthy ones. Fitness sessions are only one part of how we help your transform your body though. You get inclusive access to superb nutritional tools like the Xercise4Less nutrition app to tailor your meal plan to your own specific calorie and macro-nutrient requirements. Change your body and mind for good with the right fitness knowledge and book our life-changing body transformation camps on World Plant Milk Day!

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Fitness Friends Together on World Friendship Day 2019

World Friendship Day is coming up soon on 30th July. There couldn’t be a better time to remind ourselves of the power our friends have to inspire and encourage us, both in and out of the gym. The United Nations describes how the International Day of Friendship takes many forms, all of which centre on a “shared spirit of human solidarity”. We believe exercise to be an important one of these forms- one worth celebrating.

We know it can be a challenge to maintain a positive attitude toward exercise week in, week out- but at Xercise4Less Gyms we see every day how having a gym buddy can help you maintain a healthy body and mind. In honour of World Friendship Day 2019, we’re going to look at some of the benefits of working out with a friend (or friends).

Group hug?

The Science of Exercising with Friends

The original idea for a world friendship day came from Hallmark Cards back in the 1930s but there is actual science showing how working out in a group can supercharge your levels of motivation.

The health benefits of friends exercising together in an Xercise4Less gym or elsewhere really underline the phrase ‘strength in numbers’. Studies have found that gym users in groups are hugely influenced by those working out around them. One study showed that starting a fitness programme with friends means that you’re twice as likely to complete it than someone working out on their own. No wonder that group classes like spin cycling, Les Mills sessions and dance-based classes have increased so much in popularity over the past few years.

But what are the exact benefits of exercising all for one and one for all?

 A Friendly Commitment to a Healthy Routine

Exercising with friends comes with benefits but also with responsibilities. We’ve all been there. You have absolutely no intention of going to a 6am boot camp but you feel yourself pulled out of bed because you can’t leave your friend there on their own. Positive peer pressure ensures you keep your exercise commitments, otherwise you’re deep in the doghouse.

It’s much easier as well to stick to a fitness session at your local Xercise4Less gym when you know that you’re going to be training with friends. When you work out with gym buddies in a Zumba session, the friendly encouragement can be positively infectious. A bond is created through the sweat and tears and a sense of camaraderie springs up, leaving you wanting a little more help from your friends.

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Your Friends Help Push You Harder

Fitness friends aren’t just there to encourage you though, they can keep you accountable when your motivation is at its weakest. When you’re in desperate need of some extra oxygen, friends can inspire you with their fitness deeds. Looking across at your fitter boot camp neighbour can motivate you to keep going a little longer; no-one wants to be the weakest link in a group setting.

The thought of what you would tell your Xercise4Less exercise buddies can stop you before you eat the whole of that very tempting chocolate cake. There’s no shame involved because you know from sweating buckets together that the support of your fitness buddies is genuine. And you’re happy also to provide your support when your gym friends need it.
 

Fun and Fitness Games with Your Friends

Working out alongside other Xercise4Les gym members can lead to new friendships. What could be better than having someone to chat and laugh with in between Body Transformation Camp sets? Having fun when you’re exercising really does make your workout go quicker. And what greater excuse is there for a post-exercise meal than a gym session with a friend.

Having friends in the gym is also more likely to lead you to new forms of exercise from our inclusive group classes to lifting free weights for the first time. Gym friendship opens up all sorts of possibilities and with an exercise partner you now have no excuses not to diversify your workouts. Why would you feel intimidated about going to the Combat Zone for the first time when you can go with a friend to show you the ropes? Or you can feel comfortable working out with an old friend in the privacy of the Ladies Only gym zone.

You’re in Good Workout Company with Xercise4Less

At Xercise4Less Gyms we understand how helpful working out with friends is. That’s why our gym members enjoy inclusive group exercise classes. It’s so simple to book exercise classes online or via our mobile app that you have no excuses not to start working out with friends on World Friendship Day 2019 or any other day!

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Get England Cricket Fit for the Ashes 2019

Get England Cricket Fit for the Ashes 2019

If you feel motivated by the recent inspirational events in the cricket world cup final, then maybe now is the time to get properly cricket fit with Xercise4Less Gyms.

Anyone doubting how athletic the sport of Cricket is will have recently had that doubt crushed by England’s explosive triumph over New Zealand. As the English test team gear up for the tough challenge of Australia, why not spend an over or two on cricket fitness exercises to shape up for the rest of the cricket season? Read to find out how to build strength for cricket whether you’re a night-watchman or a potential pinch hitter.

A Squat Fit for a Cricketer

There’s no ducking out of this fundamental exercise for any Ashes cricketer: The Squat. Squats help maintain stability and create a good base for full cricket fitness at Xercise4Less gyms.

Stop more fours from reaching the boundary with a cricket squat:

  • Stand with a barbell on your upper back and your feet shoulder-width apart
  • Squat down by pushing your knees to the side while moving hips back
  • Squat down until your hips are lower than your knees
  • Stand back up while keeping your knees out and chest up
  • Stand with your hips and knees locked at the top
  • Hold the weight for a second at the top
  • Repeat

Single Leg (Before Wicket) Squat

Get fit and try emulating your Ashes heroes with a Single Leg Squat. Great for your quads, hamstrings and glutes, the squat is particularly good for cricketers spending a lot of time on their feet.

Avoid a run out with a cricket single leg squat:

  • Stand on one foot with your other leg bent at the knee
  • Balance on one leg
  • Then squat down as low as you can without losing your form
  • Pause at the bottom of the squat for a second
  • Push back up through your heel, squeezing your glutes as you go and repeat

Medicine Ball Throws (at the Wicket)

Can you see yourself throwing an Aussie out as you hit the wicket direct to win the Ashes? Then work on your Medicine Ball Throws and strengthen your abs, shoulders, and legs at Xercise4Less gyms.

Get a proper cricket workout throwing a medicine ball:

  • Drop into a semi-squat with a medicine ball in both hands
  • Drop your arms down so the ball is near your feet
  • Thrust through your hips and extend your legs
  • Swing your arms up and throw the ball as high as you can above your head
  • Catch the ball and use the momentum to take you into the next rep

Bowl a Perfect Bouncer with Cricket Press-ups

Strong shoulders are essential for bowling and batting and press-ups really work your shoulders, chest and delts.

Keep up the Ashes run rate with a press-up for cricketers:

  • Start in a press-up position, your feet together, hands slightly wider than shoulder width and arms straight
  • Slowly descend so that your chest is about 5 cm from the floor
  • Return to the start position and repeat

A Standing (Wicketkeeper) Overhead Press

Ready to be called up as an emergency Ashes wicketkeeper? Then the Standing Overhead Press is an excellent upper-body exercise for you as well as batters and bowlers.

Stand up to the toughest bowling with a standing overhead press:

  • Stand with the bar on your front shoulders, and your hands next to your shoulders
  • Press the bar over your head, until it’s balanced over your shoulders
  • Lock your elbows at the top and shrug your shoulders to the ceiling
  • Hold the bar for a second at the top
  • Lower it back to your front shoulders and repeat

Chin Up for England Cricket Supporters

A Chin Up is a superb back exercise for bent-over Ashes cricketers or amateur cricket fans.

Play power cricket with a tough chin up at your local Xercise4Less gym:

  • Grab a pull-up bar with the palms facing your torso and a grip closer than the shoulder width
  • Keep your torso as straight as possible while curving your lower back and sticking your chest out
  • As you breathe out, pull your torso up until your head is around the level of the pull-up bar
  • Squeeze your biceps in the contracted position for a second
  • Slowly lower your torso back to the starting position and repeat

Bend Your Bowling Back with an Ashes Bent Over Row  

Cricketers spend a lot of time in a bent-over position, so what better Ashes cricket exercise is there than a Bent Over Row?

Blast the batting with an Xercise4Less cricket bent over row:

  • Assume a standing position while holding the bar using a double overhand grip
  • Hinge forward until your torso is roughly parallel with the floor (or slightly above)
  • Begin by driving the elbows behind the body while retracting the shoulder blades
  • Pull the bar towards your belly button until it touches your body and then slowly lower the bar back to the starting position under control
  • Repeat

A Cricketing Hang Pull

A Hang Pull will enhance your ability to sprint to pick up the ball out in the field.

Lift your Ashes spirits with a hang pull for cricket strength:

  • Stand with a barbell with an overhand grip slightly wider than shoulder width
  • Bend your knees and hips so the bar touches mid-thigh
  • Jump upward extending your body
  • Shrug shoulders and pull barbell upward with arms, allowing elbows to flex out to sides
  • Pull bar upward as high as possible, keeping bar close to body
  • Lower bar immediately while straightening knees and hips. 

Healthy Living Week – Xercise4Less Newport

running on a treadmill hiit blog

Healthy Living Week

This April, Xercise4Less Newport will be helping to promote healthy lifestyles to young children from the local area.

As part of Eveswell Primary School’s Healthy Living Week initiative this Easter, Xercise4Less Newport will host 120 children from the school on Friday, April 5th for a healthy and educational visit.

The interactive visit to Xercise4Less Newport will help promote regular exercise as part of a healthy lifestyle and educate children about the benefits of fitness.

The 1-hour long session will include:

  • A tour of the gym and its facilities
  • An educational chat with some of our inspiring members of staff
  • The chance to take part in a fun exercise class with one of our Personal Trainers

Lead by Example

We will also be inviting all parents to attend the gym with a free day pass as part of our drive to get everyone moving and exercising.

We take childhood health issues seriously and hope to encourage young people and their families to see the many benefits of a healthy lifestyle with a fun and educational day at Xercise4Less Newport.

Mother’s Day 2019

Mother’s Day

Celebrating Inspiring Mums at Xercise4Less

Families up and down the country will be celebrating Mother’s Day on Sunday, March 31st.

We wanted to join in the Mother’s Day celebrations, which is why this year Xercise4Less is championing some of its exceptional female members that are mothers with a selection of Q&A’s.

We have dedicated women’s only areas at our facilities and as ‘The People’s Gym’ we want to continue channelling inclusivity in all our gyms and support our members with their health & fitness goals.

We’re encouraging every mother at Xercise4Less to celebrate Mother’s Day by coming along to the gym. Keep an eye out on our social media throughout the week for some inspirational stories from our members!  

How can you get involved?

  • If you’re a mother, why not bring along your son or daughter, provided they are over the age of 13, to Xercise4Less for a Mother’s Day workout.
  • Share your Mother’s Day workout pictures with us on social media by using the hashtag #mumknowsbest
  • Show your support for some of the inspirational mother’s at Xercise4Less by sharing the Q&A’s on your own social media channels.

All of our inspiration mum stories can be found below:

Claire Gillepsie

Emma Nutley

Kirsti-Lee Bushby

Lauren Phipps

Louise Lawley

Rebecca Hillas

Steph Mustoe

National Stress Awareness Month 2019

National Stress Awareness Month 2019

Every April sees the return of Stress Awareness Month, which serves to increase public awareness about both the causes and cures for stress.

Exercise has proven benefits for reducing stress. Here Gareth Lewis PT from Burnley has rounded up five of the best stress-busting exercise classes.

Indoor Cycling

This type of class is ideal for using the music to help relax you and take you elsewhere. During the routines the instructors use different strengths of resistance and speeds to make the classes harder strength wise or cardiovascular. In turn, your body then releases endorphins giving you a sense of euphoria, thus helping alleviate the worries caused by day to day stresses.

Boxing/Boxercise

Whilst these come under the same bracket, the two types of exercise are slightly different in getting to the stress-free state. Boxercise is more of a shadow boxing style work out using the cardiovascular element of working out, getting you to the point your body releases endorphins. Boxing, however, is quicker with the use of pad work, punching bags or sparring. You are using the sensation of your gloves hitting the object – whether it’s the bag, pads or a person – to help relax your mind but work your body, again to release endorphins.  

Resistance Training

This type of training is very similar to boxing in many ways. Although you are not punching something, you experience a similar feeling when using your own body weight to push or lift yourself up. These exercises help to take your mind off the stresses, and combined with the heart-elevating workout, again releases endorphins and makes you feel better.

Yoga

Yoga is a mind and body type exercise class, using physical poses as well as meditation and relaxation. All these elements put together will take your mind off your day and help you to relax. It can also help reduce your blood pressure and lower your heart rate, which are all indicative of stress.

Pilates

The stress-alleviating nature of Pilates is evident in the very nature of class, with the principle of breath. Breathing oxygenates the blood and the body’s response is to relax the brain or calm down.  Pilates also has a fantastic physiological response, causing the body to relieve anxiety and stress.  

Check out your local Xercise4Less classes today!

Not a member? Sign up now and get access to up to 40 FREE classes every week.

Walk to Work Day

group running on treadmill xmas dinner blog

Step by Step: Walk to Work Day

Friday 5th April marks Walk to Work Day, when working professionals are encouraged to become walking commuters for the day. At Xercise4Less, we are challenging our staff to spend at least 30 minutes walking to work on 5th April.

Together we hope to get more people embarking on an active journey to their workplace, with just 11% of the UK’s working population believed to walk to work daily at present.1

And yet, there are so many health benefits associated with walking between 30 minutes and 1 hour a day. These include a reduced risk of heart disease, cancer, stroke and diabetes. For those of us with sedentary jobs, walking to work serves to counteract the hours of inactivity we’re having at our desks.

How can I get involved?

  • Easy! Where possible, incorporate some walking into at least part of your journey to work.
  • If public transport is your typical route into the office, you could walk one stop further before getting on. Alternatively, why not get off a stop early and walk the rest of the way?
  • If you drive, how about parking further away so you can benefit from walking the remaining distance to work?

References

National Travel Survey

Pancake Day 2019

Five protein pancakes to celebrate Pancake Day in style

With pancake day fast approaching, Max Bridger, co-founder of LDN Muscle shared with us his five best protein pancakes for those fitness fanatics looking to mark the occasion in style!

Protein pancakes with bacon

If you’re someone who finds pancake day a daunting proposition as the temptation to ‘pig out’ looms larger than ever, fear not and save your own bacon with this recipe. Packing quite the protein punch, this naughty combination of sweet and savoury will be sure to satisfy your taste buds!

Ingredients

200g powdered oats

75g chocolate whey

Large teaspoon of a sweet/dessert spice mix

350g almond milk

9 bacon medallions (or normal rashers but these will be higher fat)

100g blueberries

Squeeze of honey

Directions:

Blend the oats, whey, sweet spices and almond butter together until smooth, and pour into a bowl.

Heat a large, flat frying pan on a medium heat with some olive oil or low kcal spray.

After 4-5 minutes add two tablespoons slowly to create each pancake.

When the sides appear cooked (after 1-3 minutes usually), flip, and cook for a similar amount of time.

Meanwhile, add your bacon to a grill and cook to your preference – remembering to flip halfway through cooking.

When the pancakes are served, throw the blueberries in the pan and push around until hot and leaking, before dividing evenly across your 3 pancake and bacon towers (what a fantastic structure!).

Finish with a squeeze of honey, maple or golden syrup.

4-ingredient vegan protein pancakes

Tackled veganuary and caught the vegan bug? If so, look no further than this simple stack to give you everything you’re after and more. For those with that extra sweet tooth, why not go bananas and top yours off with nut butter and your favourite fruit.

Ingredients

120g instant oats

1 medium ripe banana

1.5 cups non-dairy milk (I use unsweetened soy milk)

25g vegan protein powder

Directions:

Preheat a non-stick pan on medium heat.

Place the oats in a blender or food processor. Blend, or process, until the oats resemble a fine flour.

Add the milk and the banana and blend till the mixture is smooth.

Add the protein powder and blend again. If the batter looks too thick, add a little more milk.

Pour 2 tbsp of the batter onto the pan. Cook for 1-2 minutes and flip them with a spatula when bubbles have formed on the surface and the edges are slightly dry.

Cook until browned on the other side.

Muscle mousse protein pancakes

Simplicity in a nutshell pancake – If you’re pushed for time, this is perhaps the easiest recipe out there, yet it never fails to disappoint! Great as a snack, evening treat or urge killer, the possibilities are endless – our favourite additions include chocolate almond butter or dark chocolate to give them that extra boost!

Ingredients

1 whole egg

4 egg whites

½ scoop of LDN Muscle Mousse

Dark Chocolate

Directions:

Pre-heat a pan with a splash of coconut oil (half a teaspoon will suffice).

Add ingredients to a shaker and shake vigorously for 30 seconds.

Allow to rest for 30 seconds and then add to your pan.

Top tip – wait until the pancake has cooked on one side before attempting to flip!

Flower power – vanilla protein pancakes

Savour the flavour – these savoury pancakes will have you blown out the water with the power of the cauli-flower! Why not throw a boiled egg on top to give you that ‘eggstra’ punch – if you do, we guarantee you’ll be raring to go!

Ingredients

2 tbsps pureed BOILED cauliflower

2/3rds scoop vanilla whey

¼ cup oats

1 tbsp coconut flour

2 tbsp cottage cheese

½ tsp baking powder

Sweetener of choice

Pinch of salt

Directions

First simply mix everything together with a hand mixer

Then fry in a small amount of coconut oil about 2-3 minutes each side.

Carrot cake protein pancake surprise with cream cheese and greek yoghurt frosting

Easter may not be for another month, but as any bunny would we recommend getting your teeth stuck into these carrot cake pancakes. With just the right level of savoury to boot, live the dream and dust off with cream – cream cheese frosting that is of course. We guarantee you won’t be disappointed!

Ingredients

1 scoop (20g) vanilla whey

1 egg

1 egg white

2 tbsp greek yoghurt/quark

1.5 tbsp carrot puree (baby food type)

1 tsp baking powder

½ tsp cinnamon

1-1.5 tbsp coconut flour

Sweetener of choice

1/6 cup shredded/grated carrot

Directions

Mix everything except the grated carrots with a hand mixer or in a blender.

Add the carrots and stir until you have a thick batter

Fry in a small amount of coconut oil for 2-3 mins each side.

Voila! Top with pecans or walnuts and enjoy!

[2018] National Fitness Day

★ Doing our bit to move the nation ★

To celebrate National Fitness Day 2018, we hosted a number of exciting activities!

We encouraged the public to celebrate their strength and empowerment through fitness.

#Train4Free ?

An open house across all of our clubs nationwide.

Regardless whether you had trained with us before, the nation were encouraged to trial our facilities to the max for free for the whole day!

#Transform4Free ?

We hosted two free transformation camp taster sessions from 11:15am – 12:00pm and 5:15pm – 6:00pm. 

#Treats4Free 

In collaboration with Scitec Nutrition we ran a competition across facebook, instagram and twitter. 

#nationalfitnessday2018 fitnessday #fitness2me #xercise4fitness #beactive4less

World Mental Health Day 2018

World Mental Health Day 2018

For many of us, living a healthy lifestyle is incredibly important – we eat as “healthy” as we can, we run, we lift, we play sport, we practice yoga, (& party, of course) and we always try to better ourselves physically, strive for the perfect image, but sometimes, we forget about something.

Something incredible, something which keeps us alive, something which we simply do not appreciate enough and something we cannot see through our own eyes.

Our minds. ?

In the past week, it is estimated that 1 in 6 people will experience a common mental health problem. A statistic we should not be able to ignore, yet, let’s face it, we’ve done a good job of doing just that in years gone by.

10th October, 2018’s focus is on young people and mental health in a changing world. Mental illnesses often start in young adulthood; and in a generation of social media domination, a plethora of hourly comparisons, and increasing worries around body image, relationships, “fitting in”, school grades, uni degrees and job securities (to name a few), it is absolutely paramount that we give young people access to the support they need to grow up happy, healthy and more than ever, resilient… and that’s why we’re offering everyone – past members, potential members, whatever shape or size, however your state of mind – a 5 day free pass to relieve any daily stresses through exercise. ?

Mental Health can be a sensitive subject, with people commonly afraid to open up about personal issues for fears of being scrutinised or judged. We busy ourselves rounding up followers and likes, and have more ways than ever to connect with one another (digitally anyway), but then why are we still leaving eachother hanging? Despite having large social networks, why has it been found that twenty-year-youngs report feeling lonely twice as often as those in their fifties and sixties?

Well, we don’t know the definitive answer, but what we do know, is that World Mental Health Day, has been created to bash the stigma, combat the fear, and draw attention to the fact that we are all human, we all have ups and downs, and we have all been given this life, because we are strong enough to live it.

It is equally important to take care of your mental health, as it is your physical health; but what effect does exercise have on wellbeing? It plays a huge part! Even a 10 minute mooch can increase mental alertness, energy and promote an overall positive mood! Regular routine exercise can increase self-esteem, as well as reduce stress and anxiety and you can find so much more insightful information about the benefits of physical activity on mental wellbeing over here.

As well as offering you free entry from Wednesday to Sunday, we have also enlisted the help of our amazing staff members to talk about what helps them when it comes to mental health and physical activity, and what could help you…

Esther Lewarne, our central operations coordinator, said she’s never been very good at sport and always been quite intimidated of the gym and the people that use it as she thought they’d judge her ability. She plucked up the courage to get a PT at X4L so that she could learn to use the equipment and also to see what she was capable of. The main goal really was to lose weight. 

 “I never realised how much I would enjoy exercise and what impact it would have on my outlook and mental health. I will never be a size 0, nor will I be the sort of person that trains 7 days a week but I will always have the respect I should for my mind as well as my body and continue to exercise on a regular basis without pressuring myself to be the best.

Exercise now gives me a release that I wasn’t getting before and keeps my mind and body healthy. I will be forever grateful to myself for taking that first step”.

Jon Wright, Founder, commented: “The benefits of exercise go beyond just the physical. Exercise has a key role to play in helping to manage mental health problems including anxiety, stress and depression. To mark World Mental Health Day, we want to give everyone the chance to get away from everyday stresses and improve their mental wellbeing by getting active.”

James Hesling, our General manager of Leeds North says that “health” is something that many people don’t realise falls into different forms. There’s the obvious physical health, which is why so many people join Xercise4Less but what’s equally as important is emotional and mental health too. Mental health can be improved in many forms, exercise being one of them! When we exercise we release endorphins in our body and our brains uses them to make us feel good!

#handsupforhealthy minds toolkit has been designed to give you nuggets of information on the mental health of young people aged 18-24; including facts, practical links, and downloadable content as well as some handy self-care tips!

Of course, there is no right way to do “fitness”; and there is no right way to take care of our mental health, but you can count on us at Xercise4Less from now until Sunday.

Fill in your free day pass – work up sweat, and sweat out the stress – we’re here for you. ?