Personal Trainer Pumpkin Soup Recipe

So over the past couple of weeks with the theme of nutrition targeted for your specific body type I have been asked how to deal with preparing meals when the parties are opposite body types or as would be in most cases have different calorific needs.

I guess it is fairly straightforward in our house in that both myself and Mr A are operating on a low carb, high protein, high fat diet so from that point of view it does make things simpler, however Mr A is considerably bigger than me in both height and weight so obviously has to eat more calories to maintain his awesomeness.

The simplest way to deal with this could be that you simply prepare smaller portions for one party, although what we actually do is Mr A has other snacks with his meals like a protein bar with lunch or has higher calorie snacks throughout the day. He’d never get away with serving me a small portion………

But what if say one of you is eating high carb the other low carb? I guess the easiest way around this would be to make the same meal but alter the components slightly for each person.

For example, if your meal was pasta bolognaise you could still serve the bolognaise but just give pasta to the high carber and give the low carber some extra veg or perhaps just a very small serving of pasta if they wanted some.  In reality you may well in some circumstances cook different meals but I think with some imagination most meals can be adapted in some way with either portion size or adding more veg to bulk out a meal instead of adding starchy carbs like potatoes, pasta etc. and just changing one ingredient for each person’s desired macronutrient ratio.

To be honest if you just concentrate on serving good, nutritious meals full stop the rest will fall into place whatever the macronutrient ratio.

I feel like that’s not much to say on that but if anyone has any tips of they adapt meals this way then let me know!

Short and Sweet for a Change!

Nicola x

PS. With it being Halloween I feel the need to bestow on you a Pumpkin based recipe.

Pumpkin and Sweet Potato Soup

1 Large Onion

1kg Pumpkin

450g Sweet Potatoes

2tsp Coriander

1.5 Litres Stock

In a large saucepan, heat some butter or coconut oil and add the onion and cook for 5 mins, Add in chopped Pumpkin,  Sweet Potato and Coriander and fry for 1 minute. Add the stock, bring to the boil and simmer until vegetables are tender.

Transfer to a blender and blend until smooth.




Personal Trainer Talks Protein

So after the last couple of weeks outrageous bombshells that eating more fat can help you lose body fat and that eating carbs after 6pm won’t make you gain weight, I’m moving onto our final macro nutrient……………………..drum roll………………protein.

So first what is protein?

Proteins are made up of amino acids – which help to build our bodies!

There are two main categories of amino acids in the body. There are 9 essential amino acids which the body cannot manufacture and therefore we must consume through our diet.

There are then 4 conditionally essential, our body can make these however in times of stress, illness etc. our bodies cannot make enough and will therefore require extra through diet.

And lastly we have got 6 nonessential amino acids which the body can make itself.

So as mentioned we need protein and its resulting amino acids as they produce important enzymes, hormones, neurotransmitters and antibodies, without which we cannot function at all.

Protein replenishes our cells, transports various substances throughout the body, and aids in growth and repair of muscles.

Now listen in if you’re interested in weight loss. Protein in your diet can also increase levels of the hormone glucagon, and glucagon can help to control body fat. This is because Glucagon is released when blood sugar levels go down which causes the liver to break down stored glycogen into glucose for the body to use as energy.

It can also help to liberate free fatty acids from adipose tissue (the fat layer under your skin). So ladies if you’re struggling with the dreaded cellulite despite eating clean and training mean, try increasing your protein.

How much protein you need depends on a few factors, but one of the most important is your activity level.

The basic recommendation for protein intake is 0.8 grams per kilogram (or around 0.36 g per pound) of body mass in the average healthy adults.

However, this amount is only to prevent protein deficiency i.e. it’s the absolute minimum you should be eating.

Now as mentioned we need protein for optimal body function and a good immune system so eating just the minimum amount is actually doing our bodies a disservice. If you are looking for optimal health and/or are exercising it would be wise to increase your intake to at least double the recommended amount i.e. 1.6-2grams per kg (0.70-1g/lb).

It is also important to consider when you eat protein.  After training it is particularly important to eat protein as your body will have broken down its protein stores to fuel your muscles during the workout and it is therefore important to top them back up. This will help you recover and come back stronger next time. This is why many people use protein shakes post workout; it is essentially a convenient way to put protein back in the body.

So, in terms of actual food, what protein sources should you be eating?

Well true to type I suggest sticking to natural sources such as meat, poultry, fish, dairy and eggs (yolks included don’t be disrespecting my hens! And that’s actually where the bulk of the nutrition is).

As mentioned in previous posts, try different amounts and see how you feel, are you energised on more protein, or do you feel sluggish? Try also varying your source of protein and note how they make you feel. You are indeed a unique snowflake and although the basic science principles will be a good starting point you may need to tinker with them a little to find an optimal prescription for you.

So off you go to order your Friday surf and turf and call it getting your macros in!

Nicola x

When should you eat Carbs

So after the earlier controversial saturated fat episode, whilst I’m tucking into my breakfast steak with my coffee and coconut oil I will continue our macro nutrient journey.

Carbs have a bit of a bad reputation with most people, and with most diets advocating cutting them out it seems that people think that the key to all weight loss is cutting out carbs.

The truth is, whether we are using fat as an energy source or not we still need carbs. They support your metabolism and help to regulate your thyroid. Avoiding carbs completely over a period of time can damage your metabolism which will seriously affect your fat loss-the very thing that made you think carbs where the devil in the first place.  But some of us should eat more carbs than others.

If you have been following the body type nutrition posts then you will understand that your bidy type will be a good indicator on whether cutting back on carbs may well help, or if it could be the worst thing you could do. The key is first to decide how carb tolerant you are and then consider whether you function better or certain carbs over others.

This is basically done by trial and error. Keeping a food and mood diary helps. If you have eaten porridge for breakfast and feel energised and satiated until lunch, great this works for you. If you feel a bit sluggish or are starving 2 hours later, then clearly this isn’t the breakfast for you.

It also appears to be very much forgotten that there are carbs in fruit and veg, albeit usually of a much more nutritious kind. So just because you’ve cut out bread doesn’t mean you’ve gone low carb. This is why the atkins diet advocated only certain very low carb veg. So again try different kinds of carbs. I don’t do great on your standard starchy carbs like potatoes, rice, pasta, bread (gluten free for me) they make me feel a bit sleepy so I don’t cut them out I just eat them in my evening meal when I’m going to sleep soon after. I eat quite late due to my working hours so it’s a great way of getting me to feel tired! But I am fine on veg and some fruit so I eat veg with both breakfast and lunch and sometimes have a piece of fruit as a snack, particularly after a workout.

So there are some general guidelines as whether you are most likely carb tolerant or not based on your body type: Ectomorph-High Carb Tolerance, Mesomorph-Moderate Carb Tolerance, Endomorph-Low Carb Tolerance. But as I have said before you may be a mix of two body types as well as being genetically unique to you so some trial and error may still have to come into force to figure out what works best for you.

It is also important to consider the timing of your carbohydrate as this can have an effect – as per my eating starchy carbs at night or fruit post workout. This again should be tailored to your body type.

So If you are carb tolerant eating a lot of carb-dense foods throughout the day will be great for you. And also make sure you time carbs around your workout for fuel and recovery. As a rule have the majority of carbs around workouts and less carbs throughout the rest of the day. Also, if you are eating a lot of carbs you will have less need for fat in your diet as it will not be required for energy.

If you have moderate carb tolerance you should plan your carbs around your workout. The rest of the meals would consist of less carbs and higher intake of lean proteins, veggies, fruits, nuts and seeds.

If carbs just don’t rev up your energy levels it is best to only have carbs post workout to refuel glycogen stores. And keep the rest of your eating to mostly fruit and veg , lean proteins and fats. You will probably find a high fat diet gives you the most energy, but again trial and error.

And no matter what your body type/carb tolerance you should ensure you are eating good, clean carb sources. Just because you are carb tolerant doesn’t mean you should fuel on biscuits!

Good  Carb sources include Oats, Rice and other grains (buckwheat, Quiona etc) Potatoes (I have no issue with the standard white I just find people eat them to excess) Sweet Potatoes,  Butternut Squash and of course all other fruit and veg.


Nicola x

Liverpool Personal Trainer on Fats

So how has your week been? Struggling to stay on track eating clean and training dirty now the weather has turned, when sitting on the sofa hoovering a box quality street sounds more appealing?

Just remember how awesome you feel eating right and getting some exercise and how rubbish you’ll feel if you go off track. And well if your good, just remember as of today it is 8 Fridays until Christmas (thanks for the weekly countdown mum!) so if you keep going you can do a little of the quality street hovering then.

So I thought this week I would go back to the Fat issue and cover other types of fats as I focused mainly on Saturated Fat in my previous post. Mainly because it is incorrectly labelled the bad guy and as you will have read it most certainly is not.


Well this is the fat that even the dieters agree is healthy. Monounsaturated fat (MF), or oleic acid, is found primarily in beef, olive oil, avocados, lard and certain nuts like macadamias.

Like saturated fats, MF form the core structure of the body and reduce your risk of heart disease by raising your HDL (healthy cholesterol), lowering your triglycerides and reducing levels of small, dense LDL(loser cholesterol). MF is also a good energy source as like saturated fat it helps to balance blood sugar levels by providing a steadier stream of energy release than many carbohydrates.



Polyunsaturated fat (PUF) can be split into omega-6 and omega-3. For optimal health we should consume roughly the same amount of omega-6 and omega-3 fat (1:1 ratio), many people unknowingly eat a ratio of up to 25:1! So that’s 25 times the amount of omega 6 your body needs!!

And this is where the puzzle starts to become clear……….. It is this excess consumption of omega-6 that is responsible for our increasing problems with cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, obesity, autoimmune disease etc. And poor Saturated Fat and Cholesterol have been getting the blame all along. That’s why your egg yolks look so sad………………….

Omega-6 PUF (Also referred to as linoleic acid) is actually in many foods in small amounts like fruits, vegetables, cereal grains and meat, and also higher amounts in most nuts and dark poultry meat however this is not where the problem lies. Omega 6 is found in very large amounts in industrial processed and refined oils, like soybean, corn, safflower and sunflower.  Those vitalite sunflowers are starting to look a little sinister now aren’t they?

Not only is it the large amounts that are a problem but also the way they are processed, as PUF are fragile and vulnerable to oxidative damage, meaning that during the processing of these fats into oils, spreads etc.  Their original structure gets broken down which creates free radicals (think little monsters bouncing off the walls causing havoc) and it is these little monsters that cause the damage which creates heart disease and many forms of cancer. This brings up the importance of anti-oxidants which I will cover in the near future.

Now I will stress that Omega 6 is an essential fatty acid meaning that is required for proper function of the brain and the body’s ability to makes cells etc. and cannot be produced by the body and therefore must be obtained from the diet. However as mentioned above due to high levels of refined oils in our processed food many of us are vastly over consuming it.


Omega-3 PUFA can be further subdivided into short-chain (alpha-linoleic acid, or ALA) and long-chain (EPA & DHA). ALA is found in plant foods like walnut and flax, whereas EPA & DHA is found mainly in seafood although smaller amounts are found in meat.

Omega 3 plays a key part in reducing inflammation in the body; this inflammation can be presented by joint and muscular aches, skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis and also as weight gain. This is why Omega 3 is a great supplement (particularly fish oil) to take if you are on a weight loss problem, or indeed suffering from any king of potential inflammation in the body.


ALA, EPA & DHA should be considered essential nutrition to obtain from your diet.  However it should be noted that it is possible for the body to convert some ALA into EPA and DHA however most people’s bodies cannot do this efficiently enough.


Now briefly onto the really, really bad stuff. TRANS-FATS!!!!!

Firstly I must highlight there are two kinds of Trans fats.

Natural (aka CLA)



The primary natural trans-fat, conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) is found in small amounts in the meat, fat and dairy. CLA does not have the harmful effects of Artificial Trans Fats.

An artificial Trans Fat is one that is industrially created as a side effect of partial hydrogenation of plant oils. This is where the cross over comes with Omega 6, in that many of the oils, spreads etc. we consider to be healthy because they are a PUF are actually more like a Trans Fat.

Partial hydrogenation changes a fat’s molecular structure as mentioned above (raising its melting point and reducing rancidity) but this process also results in a proportion of the changed fat becoming trans-fat.

This means the body can no longer recognise nor utilise it as a beneficial fat and it therefore becomes a toxin. Cue monsters in your body.

Right I will stop rambling for now, I have ponies to go and pet (not a euphemism!)

Nicola x


PS. If the turn of weather has made you want to start stocking the freezer full of soup, which is a great idea, here is how to make a base bone stock, which is packed full of nutrients as well as being rich in collagen (great for plumping your skin out ladies!) and keratin also good for skin and hair. This makes a great base for any soup or you could actually drink it on it’s own.

You can use any animal bones, chicken, beef etc which you can get from your butcher, free if he’s very generous but at least very cheap!

You can also add any veg you like.
Just add them all to a large pan, cover with water, put the lid on and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for several hours-maybe do this on a day your in the house! (you can also do this in a slow cooker). The longer it is simmered the more nutrients that are released.
Skim off any foam that forms at the top as it cooks.

Once its done, strain the liquid and use immediately or leave to cool before storing. It will keep for several days in the fridge and you could also freeze it to be used later.

Saturated Fat is Good For You

Good fats

So how are we all getting on eating for our body type?

Just to help with adapting your diet some more I’m going to give you some ideas for good sources of your macronutrients to help keep you eating clean. And whilst I’m here I’m going to explain why we need all of our macronutrients.

I’m going to start with fats. Firstly Fat is not the enemy, eating fat does not make you fat-eating sugar and processed food makes you fat. I know what you’re thinking, “surely the government wouldn’t lie to us………”.

Today I am going to concentrate on saturated fats. Firstly, because it is the source of fat we need the most and secondly because it seems to have (wrongly) had a lot of bad press.  Whenever I tell people up to 50% of my diet comes from saturated fat they look horrified and ask if I’m worried about my cholesterol or that I’m going to have a heart attack. Erm no I’m not, but those low fat yoghurt trufflers should be worried.

We need fat in our diet, it helps our hormones to function (and it ain’t just the ladies that need that), it helps to control our cravings and feelings of satiety and it is also an energy source.

I know this will mess with your heads a bit but saturated fat is good for your heart. Saturated fat reduces the levels of a substance called lipoprotein (a). High levels of this correlate strongly with risk for heart disease. Currently there are no medications to lower this substance and the only dietary means of lowering Lp(a) is eating saturated fat. Put that in your low fat spread and set fire to it. Moreover, eating fat also raises the level of HDL, (the healthy one) cholesterol.


Fat is good for your liver. Eating Saturated Fat has been shown to help clear fat from the liver. (Head wrecker!) Additionally, saturated fat has been shown to protect the liver from the toxic insults of alcohol and medications, and can help to reverse the damage once it has occurred.  (Note. Polyunsaturated Vegetable Fats cannot do this) A healthy liver is the backbone of any weight loss programme as it is involved in metabolising fat, the healthier it is the better able it is to do this.


Healthy lungs require saturated fat in order to have a healthy surface. The fat content of lung surfactant is 100 % saturated fatty acids. Replacing saturated fat with vegetable fats, Trans fat etc. causes this surface to decline which can lead to breathing problems. Research has suggested that the increase of Trans fats in children’s diets along with a lack of saturated fat has played a role in the increase of asthma.

You brain is made predominantly of fat and cholesterol. So it really is important to include healthy fats in your diet. Would you rather your brain was functioning on a man-made chemical substance like sugary doughnuts or do you think it perform better on a nice piece of steak, mmmm steak.

Saturated fats found in butter, lard, coconut oil, function directly as messengers through your nervous system that influence the metabolism, including the release of insulin. Other fats cannot do this for you.

Saturated fats found in butter and coconut oil (myristic acid and lauric acid) are vital for your immune system. Loss of sufficient saturated fatty acids in the white blood cells hampers their ability to recognize and destroy foreign invaders, such as viruses, bacteria, and fungi.

Eating Fat gives you strong bones. As we get older bone mass begins to decline, and can lead to Osteoporosis. Now this is where the shocker happens. Saturated fat is required for calcium to be effectively incorporated into bone.  So all that low fat dairy you’ve been downing has been doing you a disservice. There is very little fat in it to help you absorb whatever calcium is left in it after all that processing. Best stick to full fat for the full range of health benefits and it tastes nicer.


Lastly, research has shown that when women diet, those eating the greatest percentage of the total fat in their diets as saturated fat lose the most weight. Like I told you, I changed my diet to around 30-50% fat and the weight started to drop off without me having to cut calories blah blah blah


So good sources of saturated fat.

  • Meat, particularly red meat. Those of you that know me know I love to have steak for breakfast; it seriously sets me up for the day. But you could have it at dinner time too. (But why wait that long?)
  • Eggs. And don’t you dare disrespect my hens and skip the yoke because of all that cholesterol nonsense that’s where all the nutrition is.
  • Full Fat Dairy.  So that’s full fat cream in your coffee, full fat butter on your potato
  • Lard. Yes I know Lard. Now as with all of these fat sources don’t eat your own body weight in it, too much of anything is bad for you. But cooking with lard is waaaaay more healthy than cooking with vegetable, olive or don’t even get me started on the one cal spray stuff. (Note Olive Oil is good for you but cooking with it changes its chemical properties, stick with it on your salad).
  • Coconut Oil. Well you will know I’m obsessed with this stuff. I put some in my coffee every morning. But you can cook with it, or just eat it off the spoon (tastes a bit like lip balm but it’s worth it for its many health benefits)

As mentioned too much of any of the macronutrients isn’t good for you. But in terms of fats I think it is really important to consider the source. More and more we are realising (as if it wasn’t fairly obvious) that it is the man made fats in our diet that our damaging our health. For example your cooking oils and spreads which have added hydrogen to make them solid at room temperature, which effectively makes them no longer a saturated fat but a trans-fat. So when choosing your ingredients, and this applies to any macronutrient. Check the label. It should a fairly short one. Milk should just say milk, butter will just say butter, and eggs well they don’t even have one!


Nicola x

PS. Well there have been some great changes being made by people at the moment, even the little ones really will add up to a big difference over time.  But I think a special mention should go to Simon Wiggins Wouldn’t Catch Him Snowden for riding his bike to work.



Healthy For Life


Well, what an absolutely crazy week it has been, it started last Friday when I got stuck in traffic and almost got out my car to go and swear at a police officer-refrained and therefore did not spend the week in jail.

How are you getting on with eating for your body type? I will be back writing on this theme next week I just wanted to go off topic a little this week. If your not a deep thinker look away now.

A few things happened this week that have highlighted a few life lessons that we probably all know but often forget when we are just trying to cope with the daily grind.

Firstly, after losing a goat a few weeks ago to illness (yes I keep goats I know it’s weird ) then on Sunday night lost one of my ponies very suddenly and she was only 3 years old and therefore way too young to have been taken. Thankfully I had given her a cuddle that morning for no other reason than because I love her, and I got to say goodbye that night as she was put out of pain.

Secondly, I was talking to a friend who has a job she sometimes spends long hours at and also has a young son and husband (her husband isn’t young just her son!) , she has been signed off work with exhaustion.

Thirdly, I have been with a client this week who I have trained for many years and although she has never showed any signs of ill health we have both known she could have made improvements to her diet, although we were making gains on the exercise so it’s not like she was doing nothing to help her health. Anyway said client had by chance come across a blood pressure monitor and found her’s to be high, and following a trip to the doctor with further tests she also has some liver damage. Scary thought when again she is showing no outward signs of ill health.

It is this third point I’m going to start with. You see, when I am speaking to people about their diet and we discuss their intake of takeaways, alcohol, processed foods, sweets etc many of them say “you only live once” and “a little bit of what you fancy does you good”. Well, yes correct we do only live once (I’m not going to go down a reincarnation route their other places for that!) and if you want that life to be a long, healthy one free of illness and pain then you need to look after yourself.  And it is fact that eating processed foods, takeaways, alcohol  and sugar is bad for your health.  So while I am not saying you can never drink wine, eat cake etc I am saying be aware of what you consider moderation.  One or two glasses of wine a week won’t kill you but one or two bottles just might. Combine that with a takeaway, that daily biscuit or two you have, and the microwave meals you sometimes have during the week and actually that is putting a lot of strain on you liver. ( I will cover this in more detail another time).  Just because you aren’t feeling the effects now doesn’t mean they won’t come back to haunt you later on.  (Pictures Big Mac covered in Ghostly Sheet following you round)

This brings me on to the second point, you see what I said to me friend was firstly she needed to look after herself more in order to be able to do everything she needs to do. He classic answer-I don’t have time! First I said my classic answer of if you don’t have time to look after yourself then your gonna have to make time to be ill! Then I gave her a practical example. I regularly work 15-16 hour days up at 5am home 9.30-10pm, 4-5 days per week adding up to somewhere depending on the week to a 50-70 hour week. I am very fortune that I enjoy my job however that doesn’t stop it being exhausting. So I make sure I do everything I can to keep my health and therefore my energy levels in tip top condition. I have coconut oil in my coffee to help my immune system, I eat predominantely  natural foods-meat, veg, fruit, eggs and goats dairy (cows doesn’t agree with me) and of course I exercise. And bar the odd week of extreme stress i.e this one! I don’t consider my long hours an issue as I’m full of energy to get everything done.

So your lesson on this, if you look after your health the extra stress of your life will be much easier to deal with and won’t seem as much of a problem.

Onto what is really a joint lesson on the first and second point. You do only live once and even the most healthy person could well not be here tomorrow for whatever reason. So, you should consider what is important to you in your life and fill your life abundantly with it. Like I said to my friend, when she said she had really enjoyed picking her son up from school for the first time-do you really have to work full time, classic response-yes I need to make money. I said realistically though if you looked at your finances I bet you could manage on less income, if me and Mr A have survived this far after I left my very well paid job to start a business from scratch I reckon most people can survive on much less. And what we learnt during that time was money doesn’t make you happy, yes it gives you options but really it’s life’s little things that make us happy. For my friend picking her son up from school, me cuddling something fluffy – cat, dog, pony, donkey, goat, Mr A, so long as it’s fluffy.

So, think about what matters to you and spend more time doing it. Trust me no one dies if you don’t hoover the living room and spend time with your kids instead, the world does not end if you leave the washing up to curl up on the sofa with your partner.

You do only live once and for that reason we should spend as much of it happy and with those we love as much as possible, and if we look after our health we are more likely to live a long and healthy life.

So for me that’s more animals less housework(what’s new?) and after proving again this week how amazing he is Mr A your bloody stuck with me and our motley crew.


Nicola x

PS. Ooooh the competition has been fierce this week but I think the accolade has to go to code name Mark Morrison aka Return of the Mack for losing close to 2 stone so far including a two week holiday in there! Seriously Awesome!

Weight Loss-Portion Control

So how did you get on with adapting your macro nutrients (carbs, fats, protein) to fit your body type?

Did you notice any difference? I did! I’m still firing on all cylinders and have dropped another kilo (that’s 2lb) no serious effort required! Oh and I checked my measurements and I’m down an inch at my waist too!

So, it has come up a few times, that old calorie counting just won’t go away! But unless you are 1000’s over your guideline total on a daily basis it really isn’t relevant. Whether you have eaten natural, whole foods or processed junk all day is!

However, I do understand some of may you need some sort of guideline to stop you going off the rails. So instead I am going to give you portion guidelines and again relate it back to your body type nutrition prescription.

So here goes….

We are going to use your hand as a measurement guide.

Now you may be thinking well surely that means if my hands are big I’d be eating more? Well yes, as your nutrition requirements will be based on your size not just a generic formula that stretches from 5ft man to 6ft5 man!   Your hand is a personalized (and portable unless you leave them at home??) measuring device for your food intake.

True, some people do have larger or smaller hands for their body size.  But mostly our hand size correlates pretty closely with general body size, including muscle, bone – the whole package (ahem).

However if you are a 5ft female with hands like shovels do perhaps adjust your measure a little!

Your palm determines your protein portions.

Your fist determines your veggie portions.

Your cupped hand determines your carb portions.

Your thumb determines your fat portions.


So how does this relate to the body type eating protocol.

Ectomorph Man:

2 palms of protein dense foods at each meal

2 fists of vegetables at each meal

3 cupped handfuls of carb dense foods at each meal

1 thumb of fat dense foods at each meal

Ectomorph women:

1 palm of protein dense foods at each meal

1 fist of vegetables at each meal

2 cupped handfuls of carb dense foods at each meal

0.5 thumb of fat dense foods at each meal.


Mesomorph Man:

2 palms of protein dense foods at each meal

2 fists of vegetables at each meal

2 cupped handfuls of carb dense foods at each meal

2 thumb of fat dense foods at each meal

Mesomorph women :

1 palm of protein dense foods at each meal

1 fist of vegetables at each meal

1 cupped handfuls of carb dense foods at each meal

1 thumb of fat dense foods at each meal


Endomorph men begin by eating:

2 palms of protein dense foods at each meal;

2 fists of vegetables at each meal;

1 cupped handful of carb dense foods at each meal;

3 thumbs of fat dense foods at each meal.


Endomorph women begin by eating:

1 palm of protein dense foods at each meal;

1 fist of vegetables at each meal;

0.5 cupped handful of carb dense foods at each meal;

2 thumbs of fat dense foods at each meal.

Again I will reiterate this is not an exact science, we are all genetically different and you will need to be a little experimental (not in that way!) to find what works best for you. And  to be honest although I have given a guideline for veg you really couldn’t eat too many, so if you find your still hungry add more veg to your meals and see if that helps.

Again don’t forget to add me on myfitnesspal search for ChuddyCharlton, you get to spy on me as much as I can spy on you!


Nicola x


Body Type Nutrition

One Size Doesn’t fit all Part 2.

So following on from last week, I’m now going to go into some loose guidelines upon which to base you’re eating on dependant on your body type. If you fall into more than one category start by using the most dominant and then if after s few weeks nothing has changed or you don’t feel energised tinker with the ratio’s based on your other body type tendency (but don’t go the whole hog) and see what happens. As I have mentioned there really isn’t an exact science so it will require a little trial and error.

So here are your starting points plus a recap of the body types.

Ectomorphs tend to be long and lean like your typical endurance athlete. They have a fast metabolic rate and a usually a high carbohydrate tolerance.

So a basic structure for this would be high carbs, moderate protein and low fat. Ratios could be 55% carbs, 25% protein, and 20% fat. Don’t overcalcculate the percentages just use them as a guide of where you should be.

Mesomorphs have a medium sized bone structure and hold muscle easily.  Think wrestlers – Triple H not Yokozuna.

Mesomorphs typically do best on an even balance of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. A split of 40% carbohydrate, 30% protein, and 30% fat is a good starting point.

Endomorphs have a larger bone structure with higher amounts of total body mass and fat mass. Think Props in rugby and Power lifters. Endomorphs generally have a low carbohydrate tolerance.

Endomorphs should focus on a higher fat and protein intake with carbohydrate intake being controlled and properly timed (e.g., after exercise). When I say fat I mean good fats from animal produce, dairy, nuts and oils-I’m currently adding coconut oil to my morning coffee.

A nutrient distribution for this body type might be around 25% carbs, 35% protein, and 40% fat.

So I have been following a higher fat, high protein, low carb diet for a week now. Some days where higher carb than others but most days my highest percentage came from fat.

How has that worked out for me?

Well I feel amazing! The difference in my mental clarity and concentration has been outstanding; I was sooooo productive last week despite various things cropping up that would normally send me off course. I haven’t felt the need for more carbs during the day, they have mostly come from fruit and veg and I have been saving my starchy carbs rice, potatoes etc. for my evening meal  which I have after usually 14-15 hour day (carbs after 6 I know its madness!). I have also found it that meal is seriously carb heavy (Mr A seemed intent on feeding me a lot of Gluten Free Garlic Bread last week!) I actually woke up feeling a little groggy the day after………….interesting.

So I know what you all really want to know is how that affected the scales etc. Well I lost 2kg and my body fat dropped by around 8%! And even more interestingly according to myfitnesspals guidelines (which I imagine are based on some outdated government nonsense) I overate most of last week-In your face calorie counting! So I will carry on this way perhaps just upping my protein intake a little as it was slightly low compared to my fat intake and we shall see what happens.

So don’t forget to add me on myfitnesspal if you’re on there, search for ChuddyCharlton cute pony picture comes up. And let’s crack your nutritional code!

Nicola x

PS. A certain someone is going to sulk about this but well done to Anne for implementing my advice and adding in some short 20 min gym sessions into her week-it all adds up!



Eating for Your Body Type

One size doesn’t fit all.

So I’ve been doing lots of nutrition research of late, and from most of the respected nutrition coaches in the health and fitness industry there is a common theme when answering peoples questions on their diet – Should be I eating this, do I need to start eating like this, and the answer is………………………… depends! Very frustrating I know, but it is actually a very honest answer and one that considers how genetically different each and every person is.

You see there is no one way of eating specifically that will work for everyone. Other than sticking with the basic of fresh, whole foods, avoiding processed foods etc. no specific breakdown of macronutrients i.e. fat, carbs and protein will work for every single person.

You see we are all genetically different.

In his book, ‘Atlas of Men’ published in 1954, American psychologist William Herbert Sheldon grouped people’s body types into three areas which he called Somatotypes.


Characterised by long and thin muscles/limbs and low fat storage; usually referred to as slim. They struggle to store muscle OR fat.


Characterised by medium bones, solid torso, wide shoulders with a narrow waist; usually referred to as muscular. Mesomorphs are predisposed to build muscle but not store fat. They can also drop fat relatively easy.


Characterised by increased fat storage, a wide waist and a large bone structure, usually referred to as fat. Endomorphs are predisposed to storing fat.

You can then also fall into more than one category.

Using myself as an example I would say I was a mix of a Mesomorph and an endomorph. I am fairly well built with a narrow waist, with a pair of legs that wouldn’t look out of place on the men’s England rugby team. However I also find it very easy to put on body fat and extremely difficult to lose it so I also have very much endomorph tendencies.

Take this and then my individual genetic makeup, hormone function (flippin mental I’m a woman after all!), gut bacteria –mines flawed and rubbish quite frankly and then my lifestyle which is fairly active compared to most peoples into account and how can I possible expect to get results long term from a diet protocol that may have been tested on someone who is an ectomorph, so skinny with a high metabolism (these people can still carry body fat it just tends to be perhaps just on the stomach) who has good hormone function-probably a man! Has a fairly balanced gut and leads a sedentary lifestyle. We can’t possibly have the same nutritional needs!!!!!!!!!!!


So instead of me going on and on about this for pages and you all nodding off, not reading it and forgetting the whole thing I’ll drip feed this information to you over the next few weeks, months…’s a complicated area but I’ll do my best to keep it light.

For now I want you to join me in some diet experimentation. I have signed myself back up to  you can use it online or as an app on your smart phone. My privacy settings are set to public. I am recording everything I eat, drink and all exercise every day. Using the graph button I am going to analyse my macronutrient breakdown. I am going to try and see how a higher fat and protein diet affects me, my energy levels, body fat etc. I am also using it to see how much sugar I’m really still eating……….

So this is where the team work begins, if you want to join me on there and let me have a look at your diet and see if there are areas I think you could improve here is what you have to do.

Sign yourself up and get a user name/login. Make sure your privacy settings are set at public-it’s just your diary I can see nothing else.

Search for friends.

My user name on there is Chuddycharlton (my first pony’s name). If you want to sign up and add me on there and also set your diary to public.

Just record everything you eat and drink, and your exercise and you will get a nutritional profile of your day.

Personally, and it is the opinion of many other people in the fitness industry you should ignore whether myfitnesspal tells you, you are eating too much protein, not enough carbs etc. as it is based on a generic, government set (read wrong!) guideline. Also when setting goals if it is for weight loss just put in you would like to lose 1lb a week otherwise I think the calorie counter is set too low.

Also, please don’t worry too much about how over or under your calorie goal you are unless you are vastly out either way, seriously being 45 calories over will not make a huge difference! I also want you to be mindful of how those calories added up, if I’m over my goal but I ate fresh, whole food all day I don’t worry about it, no one’s diet downfall was ever that bit of salmon they had a lunch trust me!

What I am more interested in is how your macro nutrients look, what percentage are your carbs, fats and protein and also your vitamin and mineral profile. Just have a look at how that breaks down, and consider how you feel on those days energy wise etc. and see if you can spot a pattern.

Some people are more tolerant of carbs than others, usually if you are endomorph biased you will not be and will need more fat (yes fat!) and protein but see how you feel as again it really is unique to you. You may find you feel better on more carbs, or more protein, maybe you realise you eat a lot of sugar without realising and have very little iron which can affect your energy levels.

So let’s not worry too much about tinkering just yet, let’s just get signed up and start recording!


Nicola x

PS: You’re all lacking in specific awesomeness of late, however I will say to my personal clients who I see regularly you have continually continued to inspire me and spark ideas in my head without possibly even realising. So thank you for the inspiration and when I finally get rich with one of these ideas I promise to send you a postcard from my remote dairy goat farm in the country.



Nutrition Tips-Just 3 Ingredients

Well I’ve been in the kitchen this week, Mr A bought me a food processor – he does spoil me! I made frozen goats milk yoghurt with damsons I had frozen from a previous year’s home grown glut. We also made Damson Vodka with the same glut……what did you think I had in my travel mug training you lot outside in the winter?

Anyway I was having a conversation with a good friend, who runs an Organic Veg enterprise, and we were essentially considering where we may have shared opinions on food, as on the face of we don’t – she is vegan and I am an avid Steak eater. But we do however share a lot of similar beliefs about food. When discussing first the vegan thing, I did agree that although I do eat meat (my dad would probably disown me if I didn’t) I do believe that animals should be kept as naturally as possible and should be fed a natural diet and not filled with additional hormones etc;  as I do not want this carrying through to the meat that I eat. Because of this I buy my meat from a good quality butcher in case you’re nosey and seriously you can taste the difference, and it doesn’t shrink when you cook it either. And it also doesn’t cost a fortune, unless I send Mr A in alone and he then falls foul of the butcher’s excellent upselling technique “do you want 4 of them steaks…….yes why not”

Also, we discussed disease and how we both believed that many of our modern day illness problems i.e. diabetes, high blood pressure, skin conditions, hormonal imbalances and many forms of cancer can be solved with proper nutrition. With a revert back to food in its natural state free from processing and added chemicals.

And I guess that’s all I want this message to be. When people ask me what they should eat to lose weight I feel like they want some miracle formula and often they don’t really get the answer I think they want.  I actually think if I told them to drink their own pee and stand on their head for an hour a day they would take my advice more than the answer I give, which is take out all processed food from your diet, and eat fresh fruit and vegetables, full fat dairy (I use goat and sheep dairy as I find the smaller lactose molecules easier on my digestion) and proper unprocessed meat.

So anyway, the point of my general rambling is this. I want you to have a really good look at your diet, how much of what you eat has been processed in some way? How many ingredients are in the foods you eat?

I also want to set you a challenge.  I want you try as much as possible to eat only foods with 3 ingredients or less (that’s each individual food component not your total meal), so that’s all fruit and veg in, unprocessed meat and good quality dairy (check the label) and anything else check the label. Now you know why I made my own frozen yoghurt. Recipe below for anyone that wants it.


Nicola x

Frozen Yoghurt.

First you make the fruit butter which can be used for a number of things.

Fruit Butter:

1kilo of Damsons or whatever fruit you’re using.

Stevia or xylitol (a pure alternative to sugar).


Chop fruit and just cover with water in a pan. Bring to the boil and simmer.

Puree in blender and weigh.

Return fruit to pan and add half its weight in your chosen sweetener

Simmer gently until it thickens into a paste.

Leave it to cool completely.

Once cooled add it to either a natural, Greek or goats milk yoghurt, blend together and pour into a pot and put in the freezer.