Hi 2018! Bit of a lengthy-ish post coming up!

So I’ve been a little absent from the whole internet-y social media world as of late. While I’m all too aware that 90% of what you see online is fake or only the absolutely best snippets of someone’s life, I found myself profoundly affected by having a 24/7 view-only access to lifestyles that were completely unachievable for me.

So I opted to take a hiatus from all of it; it was doing nothing for my self-esteem and my 2017 has been hard enough without that shit. Amazingly within the space of week I already felt better, the frighteningly long hours that I would have wasted each day on Facebook etc, I spent doing things I actually enjoy. Hell even just sitting staring into space was a vastly more enjoyable activity that looking at “#blessed” 4 million times over.

It’s been a couple of months without (maybe 3/4ish) and now. I feel like I come back at this world with a plan of what I want out of social media. For me I’ve realised for me the enjoyment is in being useful and relatable and to me that means it’s about blogs and sharing with people who enjoy life while being grounded in reality.

I love to learn and get a bit of a useful hint, tip or solution to get me through life and last year I learned countless useful bits and pieces around FODMAP/IBS on various blogs. On instagram and the like, I’ve enjoyed seeing everyday people just getting on with it. I like people who share all that it takes to achieve a goal and then seeing them achieve it, people that tell you honestly what it takes, proper blood sweat and tears (and food of course). I’ll believe the badass Lifter that eats a balanced diet and treats themselves to a pizza before I’ll believe the person that tells you the only way to be like them is some random companies fat burning supplements. The last thing I want is another year of scrolling through nonsense where “athletes” spew out nothing but motivational quotes and constant product placement (lets be real here, we’d all think your products were great if we got them massively discounted or even for free).

So for 2018 I’m getting really real about shit. Instagram, I’ll follow you if your interesting, if you’re about food and lifting we’ll get along just smashingly! If you’re about showing off wealth and the kind of fitness where all you do is take constant gym selfies or any other posing selfie and post ABSOLUTELY ZERO workout or fitness activity I don’t think we’re meant to be.

Also (my main rant about instagram) No longer will I follow people if they only follow me so that I’ll be polite and follow back and then immediately unfollow me (seriously how shitty is that?!). I want to enjoy Instagram the way I did in the begging and if that means quality not quantity; sure I won’t end up “insta-famous” but I’d rather have 10 awesome followers I can relate to than 10,000 shite ones.

So this year I’m all about me; and here’s what you should know

  • I’m no ones “ambassador” or “athlete”, though I will constantly share photos of my socks cause I love them (I buy every pair with my own hard earned pennies).
  • I’ll constantly talk about food, like 99.9% of it will be about food.
  • I’ll seldom post photos of me posing in the gym, I go to the gym to lift and you should too
  • Sometimes (rarely) I’ll post a photo of me, the reason will be I feel particularly proud of myself that day and also I suppose it helps to see what all my eating and lifting is achieving. Though said photos will never involve any expected stereotypical female fitness pose (we’re all equal and I show off the guns if I want dammit)
  • I’ll complain when it gets tough or sometimes (heaven forbid) I’ll skip a workout, cause sometimes I’d rather just sit on my ass.
  • I’ll give you this one motivational quote (just in case you really need one) “Rome wasn’t built in a day”. If you can appreciate and accept that, you’ll figure out how to achieve your goals.

So for now it’s bring on 2018, hopefully I can stay strong and keep at it (blogging and lifting)! Below is me being fearsome for your enjoyment… hehehe

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BodyPower Expo 2016 -My first fitness roadtrip!

So now that I’m firmly back in reality, let’s talk about my weekend adventure to Birmingham and the BodyPower Expo!

So what is BodyPower?
Lifted straight off their website (www.bodypower.com)
“Started in 2009, BodyPower UK has grown into the most celebrated and comprehensive fitness event in the UK, attracting, inspiring and motivating 90,000 plus health and fitness enthusiasts over three days.”

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In my words it’s a weightlifters heaven – A few of my favourite things are weights, clothes and food and this place had all 3 in abundance. With events, fitness challenges, bodybuilding competitions, clothing/food/equipment stalls and lots (and lots) of free samples, you eat, shop and show off your skills all in one very big place. And if that’s nt enough, you’ve got seminars, demonstrations, workshops and a gym to g along to should you wish!

So here are my Bodypower Highlights
Sampling and Free Stuff!
Yep virtually every stand had a protein bar, shake, pre/intra/post workout drink and glorious nut butter to sample! A personal favourite was Dr Zaks; where I attempted to overdose on nut butter and protein bread/bagels (& came home with a truly wonderful Apple and Cinnamon Peanut butter). Another was “Oh Yeah!” protein bars, I resisted buying any at the event although they were sooo good I’ll definitely be putting an order in sometime soon! Also most of the big nutrition names (Optimum, Maxi, CNP, Bodybuilding.com) had bags of freebies to giveaway if you were willing to wait in the Disneyworld style queues and sign up to a mailing list. I got around most so I now have a collection of free t-shirts, lots of whey and a MyProtein shaker (win!)
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(my day 1 freebie haul alongside some of my purchases)

Shopping! This was my whole purpose in being at Bodypower, I wanted to shop and shop I did. Discovered LOADS of new brands and got some new kit from my go-to brands (Greens Powder from Bulkpowders was a very pleasant surprise).

GirlPower!
The real winner for me in terms of content was the irlPower zone. This was an area set up just to present and educate the women in the industry. My absolute number one top highlight was Erin Sterns talk (she is my hero) on motivating, training and eating. I left feeling truly inspired and ready to really lay out my goals and start making my place in the fitness world.
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Seeing actual bodybuilding Competitions in Person
While there I stopped by the arena to watch one of the competitions. Since I started lifting  have been intrigued by the “Bikini” class bodybuilders. Curious to see just how defined a competition state athlete was, I watched the Junior Bikini USN Classic. To my surprise it was a fantastic event to watch (putting aside my sparkly bikini envy – swarovski superfan here); it made me change my view on these type of competitions. I was always suspicious of an event based purely on women strutting around in bikinis and being judged. However, on seeing how much the competitors enjoy it, and the enthusiasm of the (male and female) audience; made me realise that isn’t a bikini parade, it’s a celebration of really hard work, building a body like that is not easy, nor is choosing to face up to the stereotypical idea of female beauty. These women are showing us that pride and perseverance are assets worth showing off!
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(sorry for the fuzzy photo, I’ll be better prepared next time!)

So yes BodyPower was AMAZING and I am already excited for next year. I am now fully recovered from my nut butter hangover and feeling really inspired to carry on lifting!
And for your own amusement, here is me pulling a really stupid face for a photo!
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Feel free to sign up for the Maxi Nutrition Challenge if you’re feeling inspired (the website is a the bottom of the photo there)!

BodyPower Expo – Roadtrip Prep Part 1!

Next month will be my 3rd ever trip to the Birmingham NEC but it’s the fist trip I’ve actually been excited about. My first two trips were the MODA Lingerie/Swimwear exhibition and the Clothes Show Live. Both were in my Lingerie business time period and looking back now attending both felt like a chore, by jumping straight in and turning my lingerie and corsetry passion into business, I had sucked the joy out of one of the things i loved most. Instead of being excited about seeing all the brands and being immersed in the atmosphere, I was too busy desperately trying to weigh up if I could afford something like this, could/should i exhibit next time, what do I do and say at these events, what if  come away having made no money and no contacts?
In the end, I didn’t enjoy either event, I left both disappointed and disheartened by some of the less than friendly exhibitors (“if you want my opinion/advice, I charge £500 a day”said one rather cold individual and well, I wont name her but needless to say, I’ve never bought a single thing from her lingerie company as a result).

But this time when I go, I’m going to BodyPower and I cannot wait! This time I’m going because I want to, because I want to go learn from top athletes who are there because they want to help you, to stuff my face with all kinds of awesome food and buy enough kit to overload my car! The difference now is this blog is about sharing my passion rather than selling it, certainly one day there could a business in this for me (after all how kick ass is my little branded tank?!) but right now it’s about sharing the adventure and my love of food and lifting!

So without further adieu, Lesley’s BodyPower Prep Pack so far!IMG_4884

  1. BodyPower Power Pass – To get in, can’t enjoy all the gooodness from outside afterall!
  2. THE FIRST EVER GAINS,TRAINS & APPETITES TANK! How awesome is that??!

Stay tuned more will follow as we count down to May 14th!

Hello and Welcome to my World!

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Welcome all to Gains, Trains and Appetites, the place where you’ll find an array of useful advice, resources, tips are reviews along side lots of pictures of Food, workouts and clothes.

Fitness and healthy living is an adventure and for me, it’s all about finding the path that works for you. This is my journey, I’ve gone from a ridiculously unfit teen to a 30 year old full blown fitness addict. Like every journey I’m still learning, growing and trying new thing; so come along and join me for the ride – and hopefully you’ll find something to inspire and help you on your own journey! 🙂

(p.s. that’s me right there doing what I love the most, Aerial Rope!)