Three easy steps to building your best possible physique.

We all want to look and feel our best, but all too often, we waste time on faddy diets, exercise regimes that don’t bring results, and gimmicks that simply leave us poorer, rather than healthier! Happily, achieving optimum health and an excellent physique isn’t as complicated as you’d think; it’s just a case of getting some solid fundamentals in place.

Nutrition is the cornerstone of your success

You can train in the gym everyday, but it will make no difference if you aren’t eating the right foods. Good nutrition is the cornerstone of your physique. Eat well and you will rapidly start to change your body composition. Eat poorly, and you will never attain that toned and defined look that you desire. The key is to eat adequate and high quality protein, and forgo excess carbohydrates (particularly sugar and processed foods) that simply encourage your body to store excess fat. Protein is the key to muscle growth and recovery, as it allows our bodies to rebuild themselves - stronger - after training.

Eating adequate protein will also boost your immune system and keep you feeling fuller for longer. There is a vast range of high protein foods available, including meat, fish, eggs, nuts, dairy products and some combinations of vegetarian food too.

You can also achieve great results with high-protein food products such as whey protein powder, protein bars and meal replacements - such as the specialist nutrition products found at Remember too to drink plenty of water - this is essential for protein synthesis and allows you to learn when you are really feeling hungry and when you are simply feeling thirsty.

Train right

Once you are eating high protein and low carbohydrate, with an emphasis on natural, unprocessed and nutritious foods, you’ll find that you naturally have the energy to train hard and to your optimum performance levels. Forget endless cardio activity and instead, focus on strength training; whether through free weights, gym programmes, or specialist lifting disciplines such as powerlifting or olympic lifting. Crossfit and other programmes also combine the best of both worlds - short bursts of high intensity cardiovascular training to stimulate hormonal responses that shed fat and build endurance - and challenging strength and weights training that builds bigger and stronger muscle fibres, burning fat and rapidly changing your body composition. Don’t overtrain; work different muscle groups on different days and follow a structured programme for the best results. Consider using a personal trainer so that you achieve excellent form and track your progress.

Get enough rest

Rest and sleep are essential to building the body of your dreams. This is because high intensity workouts - for short durations - combined with strength training, put the body under stress. To rebuild itself stronger, it needs plenty of rest and sleep. Top strength trainers and athletes will regularly sleep for a good eight hours a night, to ensure that their body is getting the downtime it needs to repair and recharge. You can also benefit greatly from learning to relax and minimising stress hormones such as cortisol; try techniques such as meditation, or enjoy epsom salts baths and regular yoga or stretching routines.

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