Eating Healthily, Training Hard, Running A Business, Juggling Everything… HOW DO THE PROFESSIONALS DO IT? FitNet Asked… Personal Trainer and Strength & Conditioning Coach Gareth Bennett

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Top Hereford personal trainer Gareth Bennett offers training sessions at The Studio-Hereford and thePoint4 gyms, as well as at a location of your choice – (full Covid safety rules are applied in all settings). Here Gareth answers some of your commonly asked questions.

How do you plan your meals to fit in with your busy schedule?

Gareth: I tend to bulk-cook food on Sundays so I have plenty of meals ready to go. The greatest kitchen appliance is a slow cooker; it’s so easy to make a big quantity of a healthy, high protein meal with plenty of veg such as a beef casserole. The downside is that by the end of the week you can get a bit bored of eating the same dish again (unless you freeze some of it), but I would rather that than not having food ready and having to grab a sandwich on the fly.

What is your typical working day meal schedule? How many meals do you eat?

Gareth: It varies day to day if I’m honest. On a busy training day I will eat four to five meals a day, on a light training day I will try to stick to three meals a day.

Have you ever been on a diet?

Gareth: No.

In your experience of working with clients, where do most people go wrong with their eating habits and diets?

Gareth: Extreme dieting is the worst thing anyone can do for long term weight loss! And I don’t even like the term diet… You should have an eating strategy that you can adhere to in the long run, as cutting out complete food groups, or drastically reducing calories, may give you some short term results, but it is not realistic long term.

Do you eat breakfast?

Gareth: I eat breakfast but the timings vary. I am not great at eating as soon as I get up, so if I am up at 5 am with a few early sessions in, then I might not have breakfast till 9 am. However, if I have a steady morning, I will have something small like porridge or scrambled egg on toast, or my favourite – peanut butter and banana smoothie.

Any tips on best ‘on-the-go’ snacks?

Gareth: Try to keep the snacks as sugar-free as possible. A lot of the ‘healthy’ snacks such as energy bars may be low in fat but they are full of sugar and quite calorie dense. So if you need a sugar hit, go for some fruit, or try to get a protein-based snack like mixed nuts. My favourite has to be beef jerky.

What is your advice on dealing with over-indulgence? 

Gareth: Firstly, don’t stress! Unless you are a competitive bodybuilder or a bikini model  – they are so strict that they avoid social occasions and would never have a slice of cake on birthdays – for the rest of us some overindulgence is normal, now and again. Enjoy your holiday, enjoy a blow-out at Christmas, just prepare your mindset so that when those occasions are over, you will get back into a healthy lifestyle. 

Any tips you would like to share for those who are trying to lose weight or reduce body fat? 

Gareth: Loosing weight/body fat is all about having a calorie deficit. If you consume fewer calories than you are burning off, then you will loose body fat. And if you consume more calories than you burn off, you will gain body fat. It is as simple as that. Every pound of fat is equal to 3500 calories so if you can reduce your daily calories by 250 and increase your activity levels by 250 a day, this total of 500 calories means that you will lose  a pound of fat a week. 

What mind tools can help people stay on track with their eating habits and training plans? 

Gareth: Be mindful of what your goals are. If you are training and eating well for a social event or a beach holiday you want to look good for, then use that goal as a mind tool to keep you on the straight and narrow with your food choices, or to help you train when you are having a wobble with your training motivation. 

Gareth Bennett is an independent personal trainer offering indoor and outdoor sessions for individuals, couples, groups and corporate clients. Sessions can be booked in a number of Hereford gyms, or in the comfort of your home. ALL SESSIONS ARE FULLY COMPLIANT WITH COVID SAFETY RULES. Please contact Gareth for more details.

Gareth Bennett – TRAIN-GB 

Tel: 07429 132 276

Facebook: Train-GB


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