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)!

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Snack Attack: Yogurt Experiments

Yogurt was one of the surprises in my eating journey; I’ve learned the value of knowing the difference between “Greek” yogurt and “Greek-Style” yogurt (key lesson: “Greek”-filled with protein and helpful bacteria/cultures and “Greek-Style” full of sugar and little to no protein). I’ve also learned that Greek and Natural yogurt are very versatile foods, you can make anything from pancakes to savoury dips and of course lots of lovely flavoured snacks!

Today’s happy experiment is Cinnamon Maple Crunchy Protein Yogurt!
170g serving: Cals:220 Protein:41.8g Fat:0.6g Carbs:12.8g

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It tastes pretty good although I would be tempted to use 1/2 scoop whey isolate to reduce the whey flavour or if you don’t want the added protein switch up the whey for a teaspoon of maple syrup (remember that’s extra sugar calories though). I think the maple syrup/ground cinnamon combo would make a a nicer (& less artificial) flavour so ill definitely be trying it next time!

Also to make it all natural and get some extra protein, try switching the maple pecan crunchies for a handful of walnuts or pecans!

Make it yourself:

  • 170g greek/natural yogurt (I used Fage 0%)
  • Mix in 1 scoop myprotein Cinnamon Danish Whey Isolate (blend may make a smoother mixture but i just mixed by hand)
  • Dash of ground cinnamon
  • top with about 10g crushed Musclefood “Maple Pecan Crunchies”

Food! My first breakfast on the Blog

This is the 1st of many things today; the first breakfast, first food photo, first review and the first item I’ve tried from my Box of Protein (https://www.boxofprotein.com/ i’ll review fully later but in short: seriously worth a look)

So here it is – Today I gave Chocolate Protein Porridge (MyProtein) a go.

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What is it?
It’s a ready mix sachet with oats, flavourings, Whey powder and some other things. My guess is the idea is it’s quick, easy, low calorie and protein packed

Macros Per 50g Sachet/Serving (minus mik/water):
Cals:197 | Fat: 3.89 | Carbs:23g | 16g

The Breakdown:

It’s speedy and definitely easy
I like breakfast to be a quick process in the mornings, the quicker it’s made and eaten, the chances of me catching the earlier tram to work increase, and this is pretty quick. You chuck it in a bowl, add your milk/water/whatever you choose to use,quick stir, microwave it for 90-120 secs and that’s it.

How is it tasting though?
Admitedly with Whey in there I had my doubts (whey can leave a horrible undertaste sometimes) but this is pretty nice, I taste chocolate rather than whey. For me though it’s not quite rich enough on the chocolate front. I like cocoa powder in my porridge normally so this feels a little like it’s slighthy sweeter and more artificial cousin. But that aside it’s a welcome and tasty discovery

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The final verdict?

It’s good but in truly bias fashion, i think my homemade version is nicer. When I make chocolate porridge myself it takes the same amount of time, has a richer flavour and is minus sweetners and thickening gum. Homemade has more calories and a less protein but has way more to give in my eyes.
So it’s definitely a worth a try but there’s more to gain from having a go at making your own!

Check out my Friday Breakfast favourite: Coconut, Chocolate and Banana Oatmeal/Porridge