Thursday, 28 January 2010

Snoozy Ninja.

Gym Ninja discovered the ideal appetite suppressant today!!

Ideal for long car journeys where you find yourself reaching for a snack to keep yourself awake.  With this, you find that you have NO desire to eat. Not even a bit!
So what is it?

It is...
*drum roll*

A strawberry scented red jelly car air freshener from Asda.

Gym Ninja bought one for the Blandmobile (company car) and used it today. By the time she'd driven to the Lake District and back she felt rather nauseous. Yuk! She certainly didn't want to snack as she drove. So, if picking on long car journeys is a problem for you then why not invest  a couple of pounds in one of these?

Gym Ninja is having to cobble together a home-based workout later on today. She is so tired from getting up ridiculously early that she doesn't feel she has the energy to drag herself for a run at the gym (although give her time-if she discovers she has a couple of Viper Extreme Maximuscle Energy Capsules left then she's heading out of that door and off to the gym sharpish!). Instead she will do some jump rope at home in 20 minute sessions whilst cramming in some last minute study on upper and lower body soft tissue complaints for her course over the weekend. Again, she has issues with getting the information to stay in her head as she is tired. However after she finishes work she may have a 20 minute power nap, and then awake to skip and revise. Multi-tasking you see. Stops her sulking. She has not received the call to go and collect her new car so is a tad grumpy about it, especially as she counted 82 Mini's on her journey today.

She's also fretting as this weekend, as part of the 'Fitness Assessment procedure' training, she will do a Bleep Test. Now the Bleep Test is something that is done to assess cardiovascular fitness and estimates your VO2 Max.  You whack a couple of cones 20 meters apart and then run between them, ensuring you reach the cone before the  beep. The beeps speed up, so you do too.  Then when you eventually quit, they count up what level you reached and then congratulate/mock you accordingly.

Gym Ninja has baaaaaad memories of the Bleep Test. She only ever did it once, when she was 11 and a FK at school. (FK=Fat Kid by the way). Back in the day when Gym Ninja hated sports with a passion. She barely made it to level 3 before keeling over, gasping for air, so the whole test thing is bringing back some childhood anxiety!  Admittedly, she knows she will be a lot better at it now she is fitter, however she is still dreading the competitive side whereby everyone in her group will run at the same time. Ooer! Who will quit first? NOT Gym Ninja if she can help it.  She needs to do well to avenge the fat kid hidden inside her!

So....Back to the old juicing scenario..long time no blog about it eh?

Gym Ninja has had to go 'off piste' a moment before blogging and cobbled together a juice without following a recipe, as she has to use up some near dead vegetables in her fridge...this is what she shoved down her spout, if you pardon the expression..

cucumber x 1/2
kiwi x 2
apple x 1
carrots x 2
broccoli (yeh!)
beetroot x 1
ginger x lump of, unpeeled & organic

As you can see from the photo, it really was a case of lobbing any old nonsense into the Juicer and seeing what came out...That broccoli freaks Gym Ninja out just by looking at it! How can it possible contain any juice? Oh and no the whole piece of ginger didn't go in..just it's 'left leg'.

So what came out? This!

Hmm....same reddish hue due to the beetroot...but with the evil bubbly top....oh and it stank of ginger. Perhaps Gym Ninga added too much ginger?

Anyway, with much trepidation, GN took a sip....and it tasted of....ginger! OW! The ginger almost took the back of Gym Ninja's throat off. Mind you, it failed to disguise the taste of the broccoli, but it really wasn't as bad as expected....oh and yes, Gym Ninja DID hold her breath as she knocked it back.

So...Gym Ninja will now name this concoction..... 'Ooops Juice'. Named after the yellow 'Ooops' reduced stickers they stick on rotting fruit and veg at Asda..

Tadaaaaaa! Go try it yourself. Just don't blame GN if you vomit ok?

Right-Gym Ninja needs to go and revise/sulk/skip, not necessarily in that order.
 Toodle pip!

Gym Ninja x

Quickie Ninja!

Gym Ninja does not know where the time went today so cannot blog full-sized as it is now nearly tomorrow! Busy busy!

However, today, courtesy of listening to The Fit Cast Podcast (find it on iTunes or follow them on Facebook here) she looked up FitDay, a free calorie nutrition log online. Now yeh, Gym Ninja knows a lot of you already know about it. However, she didn't ok?  So she has filled most of it out today and fears it may be another thing computer-related she finds leaches time off her! Worth it though! It's surprising where the sneaky calories add up! It's hard to lie to oneself about what one eats when one has to write it all down. More about this in the coming days...

Gym Ninja signed the final bits of paperwork to adopt her Mini Cooper today too! Now all she hopes for is that the finance people get a wriggle on and sort the spondoolies Thursday so she can go play swapsies and trade in her BMW and collect her new baby! Bless the Mini Showroom guy! 

"Anything else you wanna buy mate?" He asked, knowing full well Gym Ninja is prone to pointing and saying "me want!" She'd already sat there as the Parrot Guy came into the showroom to install her parrot. Aww, Gym Ninja always wanted a parrot you know. Not the bluetooth version in her car. No, she always asked Father Christmas for a real 'stuffed dead' parrot. Yep. Cute kid eh? Oh and no, she never got one so sadly couldn't fulfill her dream of being a 6 year old pirate. *sigh* 

Oh and before she goes, she wants those of you she's not already coerced into playing, to play 'The Mini Adventure' Game. Spot as many minis out and about between 6am and 6pm as possible. Play with a friend. Text or email your totals. Pathetic yet strangely absorbing. 

Ok, bed time for me!  

Gym Ninja in brief x

Tuesday, 26 January 2010

Tired Ninja


Sorry. Will try & be relatively (!) brief as Gym Ninja is shattered!!!!!!!
Oh and yes, she DID get to the gym-panic over!

But first....The Mini Adventure...

Gym Ninja's finance went through today. She'd missed a call from the Mini Man asking her to ring him and he wasn't available when she did, so by the time he called back she was in no fit state-she couldn't bear it if, for some reason, BMW Finance who'd happily been accepting her payments these past 2 years declined her Mini deal! Luckily 'Ze Man from Mini, he sayz yes!'

Wooohooo! So she dashed over to sign some MORE paperwork, with the last bits tomorrow to do. Whilst she was there she also managed to coerce him into fitting a freebie number plate 'frame' and ordered a bluetooth kit so GN can gab without losing her Noise Assassin earpiece (yes, she has lost her new one already!).  Sadly she could not order the zebra print roof though, (who knew anyone would ever want a zebra print roof???) as because her Mini Cooper has a black roof, the transfers for the zebra won't show up as they are in black(the white bits areutilised using the white roof if there is one.) SO if GN got that, it'd look like a Zebra in a Power Cut....!

So off she pootled to the gym after a fair hundred miles on the road up in Wakefield and then Nottingham. On route she played the Mini Game. You can all play along at home too. (well, Ok so NOT at home or you'd not spot any). Just count up how many Minis of all models you spot from leaving the house in the morning to returning at night. Monday saw 77 of the blighters, and today Gym Ninja spotted 64 ...they are EVERYWHERE!!!!!! she headed to the gym & was surprised (don't ask why she never learns!) that the car park was full. She thought everyone would go last night? AH she went and got changed, bypassing the groups of Chatterers in the changing rooms. The ones who set up camp on the benches and wind and unwind their iPod headphones as they all chat in a group-it is compulsory that one always sits cross-legged on the floor though for some reason!

Gym Ninja edged towards the treadmills,...*sniff sniff*...NO Deep Heat today! Remarkable! Would GN remember how to run without the stench of it burning her lungs though??  Yep-she CAN run without that smell! Fantastic! She undertook Fartlek training today, whacking up and down the speed and also incline of the treadmill so that she revved up her body and got a decent workout done in a short space of time. She then headed upstairs to lift some weights. It was Upper Body Day today. YAY!

Today, the womens section of the gym was busy, but it was full of women who were focussed on their training AND knew what they were doing. Well, MOST of them knew. The rest flailed around. But it must have been the largest group of knowledgeable females training at once that she'd seen in that area for a while.
That is SO cool! The sooner women realise how great weight training is, the sooner they can change their bodies for the better.

There were women doing supersets, whereby they trained opposing muscle groups back to back to save time & increase calorie burn. There were women doing various forms of body weight moves using steps and benches. There were women doing effective ab work, and even women throwing around barbells. Marvelous!  Keep up the good work ladies & your reward will be a fantastic body!

Gym Ninja felt a tad higgledy piggledy today though. She'd stuffed her gym kit into her bag Monday and left it in the car so it'd been screwed up for 2 days. She looked like a crumpled jumble sale. She'd also packed her pink and orange Adidas top as she'd not worn it in ages. She then recalled that she HATES that top. It makes her look (more) stupid than usual. Grr. Nothing like wearing a top you hate to make you get a sulky face on!  Oh, and that, coupled with the fact that her tracksuit bottoms kickflare thingies (still cannot decide what to call lower body workout pants? Oh wait! 'Workout Pants!!') ...OK start again, her Workout Pants must have, at one point, been accessible to her cats who must have then slept on them, leaving a fine layer of cat fur...THAT made Gym Ninja feel like a 'pleb'. *sigh*

Plebbiness aside, she then headed back to the treadmills for a quick 10 minute run to finish her workout.
Oh no!
Deep Heat!
WHO is it?
Who is THAT sore that they bathe in it? STOP IT!
 Dear 'Those who work there who read this blog' (and pretend they don't, thinking I don't realise that they still do), please maybe put up a sign about basic gym rules, like no overpowering perfumes or strong fragranced sports products in the cardio area? Big gulps of air whilst sweating hard are not nice if strong odours are present. It could put off new people who also hate the smell, yet who think the gym always stinks and so stop going? Oh and if you wouldn't also mind clearing out the old tissue that is still in the right hand cup holder of the middle treadmill downstairs, that'd also be greatly appreciated as it's been there at least a week now and is starting to grown a personality.  Ta very much!

Okey dokey. Gym Ninja has run out of steam as she is now on borrowed sleep time. She needs to get off this computer and head to bed before the lure of Mini accessories takes over and she spends an hour window shopping online at the various roof decals, boy racer stripes, chequered flag wing mirrrors and orange luggage!!'s like living in a cartoon world!!!!!

See you tomorrow!

Mini Gym Ninja x

Monday, 25 January 2010

Ninja Mini Adventure

Gym Ninja didn't make it to the gym tonight.

She was intending to..but then she remembered last week's Monday workout..the Monday Newbie Crush! Eeek! Did she really want to squash herself inbetween a Deep Heat User & a 'Window Shopper Walker?' No! So instead she decided she'd go straight home & revise for this coming weekend's PT course.  Of course, she is just firing off this blog first as she listens to the audio revision, then shall move onto text book reference. Luckily for Gym Ninja, she has a head-start on the various free weight training techniques having read the old classics a few years ago, such as FLEX Magazine, Muscle & Fitness, Muscular Development and so on....yeh..the big boy bodybuilding mags! It's surprising what crops up on a professional Personal Training Diploma that Gym Ninja previously learned by reading how Dorian Yates, Lee Priest,  Flex Wheeler etc created 'impressive guns/explosive quads/gigantic chest by working these techniques.......(hmm, you never get anyone called, say, 'Dave Jones' do you?).  Gym Ninja recalls showing her nephew, (then, only 1 year old)  a Muscle & Fitness Magazine which had scantily clad muscular women posing with the guys, and her nephew was transfixed with the ladies round glutes! (Gym Ninja still thinks he has a thing for ladies bottoms!!!!!!)

GN has now also been immensely distracted by the plyometic style medicine ball moves shown on video. Hmmm...the guy looks a tad silly jumping on one leg, his arms flailing around. Gym Ninja thinks these are training techniques that her and her clients should do when not in full view of a crowd!!!!!

Anyhow, sadly GN has to keep this blog brief today. Too much study to be done. Plus, she is again perving at Mini Coopers online, having now just rushed out and bought one! Yes, after half a day of mulling it over, she headed back to the car showroom and arranged to trade in her BMW and get a nice shiny Mini Cooper to razz around in.  The Mini Cooper has all manner of Ninja style additions  ...multicoloured internal lights, secret compartments, giant dinner plate for a speedometer, space for Ninja Stars...all the essentials!  She has also discovered that she can order exciting roof decals such as a zebra print roof, or even an image of a giant zip opening up the car! (Hmm.....maybe not that one!)  GN's only concern is that the boot is so small that she doubts she'd be able to stuff her gymbag into it? Ah well...that means that she'd best design her own patent dispatch bag style NikeID gym bag eh? if you have forgotten what Gym Ninja is on about then click on the banner at the top of this blog...but just be prepared to want ALL the personalised stuff!!!!!

Another marvelous fact is that Gym Ninja will now be getting a road tax refund as she'd only just whacked on the tax for her BMW. The refund will pay for her next protein supplement order. If you recall, Gym Ninja told you that Maximuscle are doing a promotion right now that means if you buy 2 tubs of Promax protein, you get a free tub too! SO Gym Ninja will spend her rebate flavors to get? Choc Mint is a given of course. If you've tasted it then you will know why! She's still got plenty of strawberry to mix in as smoothies at home, so no need for that. Hmmm...she's also got Natural for when she cooks, plus cookies & cream. OK, so maybe she may be adventurous and try Orange? Yep, Orange and maybe Vanilla? HURRY UP Maximuscle and bring out a Creme Egg Flavoured protein powder!!!!!

OK-best go. Stuff to revise!!!!!! Apologies for the sub-standard blog. GN shall get herself back into the swing of it tomorrow...

Gym Ninja x

Sunday, 24 January 2010

iPhones & iCars!

Yep. iPhones and iCars!!! 

No gym-related blog today, so if you do not have an interest in anything other than Gym Ninja's  fitness and nutrition ramblings, then you are excused and  can return tomorrow when Gym Ninja will blog about her usual rambly stuff. 

Gym Ninja thought she'd elaborate as to what happened the other day with her iPhone. Tis worth a giggle at her expense!

On Thursday of last week, Gym Ninja had detached her headphones whilst mid-way through a call on her iPhone so she wouldn't look like a muppet walking through the street talking to a small bit of wire!  As she did so, the iPhone refused to respond. This meant that although the headphones were now detached, the iPhone still thought she was using them so her caller couldn't hear her very well, nor could Gym Ninja hear her caller...well, no that is a lie. She COULD, but it was in the distance and very very faint! 

GN IMMEDIATELY called O2. She frets if her iPhone is ill, and this new one is only 6 weeks old, bless. Barely old enough to eat solids.  Luckily, the man at O2 was soothing and reassuring. They have a separate section for iPhone users as we treat our phones like children, and thus need someone who understands this and doesn't shout "Get a GRIP, it's 'just' a phone" ! 

"Ooh, don't worry my love" Said Mr O2 man in his friendly Scottish accent.
"It's purely a software issue. Go home & restore your iPhone using iTunes on your computer & it should be fine". 

GN perked up at this, and once she'd been to the gym she did just that. Then, as she went to dial someone she discovered...NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! The issue was still occuring!  EEEK!  By now it was too late to call O2 back as they'd all scarpered for the day, so first thing Friday after a sleepless night fretting about her iPhone, she rang them back.

"Oh dear!", Said the Scottish O2 man. "That's terribly unlucky!"

Gym Ninja thought if EVER a person had used an inappropriate term it was now!

"Looks like it may be a hardware problem then, so you can either take it straight in to an Apple store, or into an O2 store and we can give you a 'loan phone' and send yours away for a couple of weeks".

Gym Ninja was a little bit sick in her mouth when he said 'send it away for a few weeks'.  NOT an option Mr O2 man! So, at lunch time she hot-footed it over to Apple and set up camp at the Genius Bar waiting for a Genius to come to her rescue (in shining armour, on a white horse!).  She was soon approached by a 'James Corden' look-a-like (off Gavin & Stacey) 


(identical except wearing an Apple uniform!)

He listened intently, interjecting with regular, calming 'Oooh no, poor you", and "Oh gosh, how awful" as Gym Ninja barely contained her sorrow at her poorly sick iPhone! Gym Ninja watched, hands wringing, as Apple James shone a little torch into the headphone socket and then into the iPhones bottom (the slit at the base of the iPhone, the dirty pervert!). 

"Yep, it's broken alright", He said, in a gentle voice. Gym Ninja's eyes went like saucers and started to fill up...
"It's OK though. I Can sort this for you no problem and get you a brand new one immediately".
Gym Ninja beamed at him! 

As he filled in the paperwork for her replacement handset, he explained in a slightly patronising way as to how the iPhone is a very clever mini computer and sometimes the little pins inside the headphone jack get bent inwards, and so the iPhone thinks the headphones are still in there....and so on. Gym Ninja couldn't be annoyed with Apple James though, as he was her hero and replaced her phone. 

"Don't switch it on to activate it until you are home and attached to iTunes", He warned. "Then ring O2 and re-register the handset". 
He smiled at GN and stared at her for just a moment too long...'You take care now!"

Gym Ninja skipped out of Apple, detouring long enough to drop £50 on stuff she didn't need from there, and headed home. 

Once home she fixed up the phone and left it restoring itself as she carried on with her work.  She picked up the iPhone and rang O2...

"whisper whisper whisper whisper whisper"  Said O2.


Nooooo! The NEW iPhone was doing the exact same thing! So, INCREDIBLY flustered, GN headed all the way back over to Apple, paying again tunnel fees and parking fees before rushing into the store. She galloped over to the Genius Bar & explained her plight to an Apple person. They told her to take a seat, spoke with Apple James and then asked GN to wait until he was free, and he'd be over to help. 

Meanwhile, GN was busy ringing O2 and her voicemail,  just to check the problem actually did still exist and she hadn't just had brain freeze & forgotten how to make a phone call (hey, it happens sometimes OK??). Yep-whisper whisper in the distance! EEEK! Still broken. 

"Oh, hello again" Said Apple James, winking at Gym Ninja. 
"Back so soon? I hear you have the same problem again? Would you like to tell me what happened?"
*cue patronising yet intense look from Apple James*

GN quickly explained about how the SAME issue was occurring AGAIN! Apple James listened quietly and nodded periodically.

He picked up the iPhone, removed the plastic film (GN hadn't had time even to peel it off!) and dialed Apple to test it......

CLEAR AS A BELL, the voice of the operator boomed out of the handset!


Gym Ninja stared at the iPhone which was now working perfectly! What is this witchcraft he has performed? 
"Give me that!", Demanded GN and snatched the iPhone back.
"Let me try! I swear it wasn't working before"

Gym Ninja dialled O2 and whaddayaknow?  PERFECT crystal clear voice at the end of the line!
Noooooooooooo! Gym Ninja no understand!

"But, but, it was broken!"

Apple James stared at her and shook his head, a soft smile that said "oh you silly silly girl' on his lips...
He peeled back the plastic protective film and then handed GN the iPhone.

"Did you remove the plastic off the iPhone when you tried it?" He asked.
GN shook her head.

"Oh dear. You see, the plastic cover doesn't have a hole where the ear speaker is so it CAN muffle the sound if it's covered. Try it yourself". He offered the iPhone to GN with the plastic cover on. Sure enough, the sound was as before-mega quiet. 


Gym Ninja is officially a bimbo! She had hot-footed it over to Apple, paid double the tunnel and parking fees, all because she hadn't taken off the protective plastic from the new iPhone.  

"It's OK, I'm sure other people make that mistake" Patronised Apple James. Annoyingly his face said otherwise...
He reached over and clasped Gym Ninja's hand in both of his.
"You take care now. Really nice to see you again!"

At that very moment, as he was still gripping her hand a little bit too long, Gym Ninja realised that Apple James now thought she'd manifested this as an excuse to come back over and see him again as she was hopelessly in love with him. 
NO NO NO NO NO! GN is NOT in love with Apple James!!!!!!

So...the moral of today's blog is to always peel off the plastic protective film or a big pudgy man may think you are in love with him. 

On a different note...iCar!

Well, it isn't an iCar-Gym Ninja only said so to make a good Blog title.  No, Gym Ninja is ready to trade in her BMW and downgrade to something more manageable and fun. Times are tough, circumstances are changing and she no longer will need to belt the length & breadth of the country for work. She needs to change her car (on finance of course) before it gets so ridiculously high in mileage that it is only worth 6 pence and a bag of chocolate buttons (and no, not even Cadbury Chocolate Buttons-think the cheap generic ones you get from the Penny Sweets Section that don't even taste right).   She's been doing some research and has come to the decision that not only will she NOT be buying new again (turns out £12,000 has been wiped off her BMW in just over 2 years, gulp!) she will in fact consider the car that is typically girly...yep...a Mini.

So, today she has been mooching around a Mini show room (like some sort of Fisher Price style Grown Ups showroom) and had a chat with a man about a Mini Cooper! Admittedly she was interrupted by a small child in the showroom choking on a biscuit, and then half an hour later the same small child landing with a gigantic splat noise as he tripped on the floor, but she did manage to ask all the right questions she wanted to!
She's off to see him again tomorrow (the Mini salesman, not the clumsy small child) to razz up and down the road in it. All the sums work out and she can actually reduce her payments if she buys it, so, if Gym Ninja thinks she doesn't look too stereotypically girly in it, she's buying it!

 A Mini Ninja!!!!!

So...check back tomorrow for a more gym-related blog and maybe a mini Adventure eh?

Gym Ninja x

Saturday, 23 January 2010

Saturday Shatterday


'Shatterday' as in 'shattered' due to tiredness, and NOT a fake past-tense colloquial term for lack of bowel control! Perhaps Gym Ninja didn't think through today's blog title properly? She was just trying to make a change from her usual 'Saturday Slaughter Session' title that's all!

So...GN yet AGAIN went to bed late last night as half the evening was taken up by her meticulously putting together a spreadsheet to chart her body composition. GN loves charts/lists/records of stuff. It's the geek in her.  She used her Tanita Innerscan BC545 Body Composition scales for the second time since she shelled out silly money for them a couple of months or so ago. She is now determined to use them on a weekly basis to monitor how well her nutrition & training are doing (or indeed how badly if the results show negatively?). The reason she hadn't done so recently is that, to her shame, she'd not even done her weekly weigh-in since a fortnight before Christmas!

Luckily, weight increase was about 3-4lbs but surprisingly her body fat was now 4% lower! Golly. Does this in fact mean that Gym Ninja's regime is working correctly? She does hope so! However she will weigh herself weekly at the same time for a month to determine the fluctuations that can happen with body composition, before celebrating her low body fat! Oh, and she won't bore you with individual arm/leg/torso measurements and %s and muscle mass, water %, visceral fat, bone density, Resting metabolic Rate and Metabolic age....(Gym Ninja will save that for another day!)

So today GN headed out to the gym for her Saturday Slaughter session. She'd not done one of these for 2 whole weeks so was looking forward to doing a Spin Class again. On route she listened to the Scott Mills Radio One Podcast and to her delight, discovered her 'Dear Scott' email had been read out on air on Thursday. HOW exciting!  (Sorry-she didn't find the direct link to the iTunes podcast for you to click on, but go look anyway...see if you can guess which email was from Gym Ninja?)

She arrived late at the gym so only had time for a 5 minute warm up and a shot of 'Target' energy shot, (the blue one if you follow the link) before heading up to the Spin Studio.  Already in there, apart from a few gym towels reserving bikes like Germans around a pool, was the Spin Instructor. He was new to Gym Ninja and as she passed him she asked if he planned on working them hard today? Well, Gym Ninja has to ask-after all, not all Spin Instructors are created equal!

Much to her surprise, the instructor was very forthcoming. He went into detail about how it would be a hill-based climb session with some sprints thrown in, and that as he is a mountain biker himself, he can use his experience to give us all a good workout. Gym Ninja and Spin Man chatted for some time as the others came into the class (Bread Head and Clippy to name but two regulars).  Gym Ninja then asked the 'crucial' question....

GN: "So, this is an hours class. Will you be doing a whole hour or just 45 minutes, as some of the others cut the class down to 45 minutes and we don't realise until we are outside and it's only 10.45am!"

The Spin Man looked confused. Luckily this was because he didn't realise that there were others that cut the class down. He planned on working us for the whole hour.

"That's great! No point being here if you're not going to work for a whole hour is there?" Explained Gym Ninja, looking across at her fellow Spin-ees (for want of a better name) hoping for agreement and nodding.
Gym Ninja was met by a room full of sullen faces, glaring at her. WTF? Why would you go to an hours class hoping NOT to do an hour of exercise? What IS the point of going? It's not Double Maths, whereby you do hope the teacher will let you out early. This is for OUR benefit.

So they began...and the music and class structure was great. Perhaps it was due to the energy shot prior to the session or maybe because GN has not done it for 2 weeks, but she found it challenging yet not too tough. Next time she will add on additional resistance to ensure she virtually trickles out of the studio as a melted version of her  former self. No point doing it unless you push yourself to the extreme.

A quick 20 minutes of the Stair Climber followed...GN is trying to catch up on her cardio quota and wanted to take a break from her cardio intervals to trick her body a bit. As she did the climb, she watched the latest muscle dissection lecture on her iPhone (yes, it was replaced with a new one-remind GN to tell you all about the humiliating visit to Apple yesterday!)

Then it was time for LEGS!  Gym Ninja decided to pre-exhaust the quads by rattling out 3 sets of leg extensions. It was tough going, not helped by a guy the height of a prize-winning sunflower cutting through the gap and walking directly in front of her as she raised her legs to full extension, thus booting him in the thighs! Next up, was the Hammer Incline Leg Press. As she walked over to it, she noticed an old guy ransacking the storage part of the machine. He was stripping off all the 25kg plates and taking them over to the Hammer Strength ab crunch machine.

Oi Granddad! Stop that! Gym Ninja needs some bloody weight plates herself you know! But he didn't take a blind bit of notice and loaded on 4 x 25kg plates on the lower part and another 4 x 25kg plates on the upper part of the machine. She then watched as he hauled his arms and legs together in a dual crunch like movement, dragging the weights with him. His face turned red as his blood pressure must have rocketed. Hmm, the only thing getting a workout in there was his blood vessels and his arms!!!!  Humph! Gym Ninja then had to forage around the gym area for weight plates until she had enough for 120kgs.

Once her sets and reps were complete she hobbled over to the womens section to do some Bulgarian Split Squats & Romanian Deadlifts. The, grabbing a stability ball (yeh, ironic eh seeing as how much GN harps on about hating them) she began some Stability Ball Planks. Effectively you get the plank position yet your upper body rests on the ball, and you grip onto it for grim life as you roll side to side like a buffoon. Yeh, you may LOOk stupid but it does the job!  Just as she was finishing up her last set, a voice boomed hello at her through the noise of her iPod.
T'was Spin Man. He wanted to know what she though of today's class. Wow. The guy wanted feedback!  How marvelous! GN then ended up in a big long conversation with Spin Man about various levels of professional fitness people's techniques, people who eat and drink nonsense, the perils of bad instructors and so on...yeh, GN even managed to harp on about her mega crush Jack Lalanne too!

Ooops-sorry. Did you notice the pause? Gym Ninja set up the Jack Lalanne link for you and then ended up reading through his 'feats and achievements' again. Goddamit, why can't Gym Ninja be Jack Lalanne's friend?

On that obsessive note, GN needs to head off and stalk Jack Lalanne...

Have a great weekend-be back here tomorrow or else!

Gym Ninja x

Friday, 22 January 2010


Cor Blimey!

Gym Ninja had a fantastic cardio-only gym session yesterday. She felt that she was long overdue a hardcore cardio session, as usually you will recall, she has her weekly Saturday Slaughter Session whereby she slowly dissolves into a puddle of sweat. Well, she's not been able to do that for 2 weeks, so she was chomping at the proverbial bit due to only managing 20 minutes or so of cardio during her usual gym visits.

She'd also done a fair bit of driving mileage this week and found herself eating  more than usual just to fuel her long bored hours in the car. Nothing sinful though. Oh no! Gym Ninja DOES occasionally stuff sinful things into her mouth, but nothing food related and that is NOT for this Blog without a 9pm watershed ;-)

DAMN those Endorphins!
They just made Gym Ninja turn into Frankie Howard with her innuendos! Apologies........what she was trying to say was, that although she can fall into the snacking-through-boredom trap, her snacks are still healthy.  But as we all know, it doesn't make a blind bit of difference whether they are healthy or not if her calories IN exceed her calories OUT. Thus, GN needed to get them out, so to speak! (See? There she goes again with her innuendos!).

She headed to the gym. She'd packed her 'spray on' running leggings as she knew that things like that made such a difference if she knew she had a long session ahead. Excess fabric flapping around and soaking up sweat like a sponge can hinder her workout, so once she was all 'lycra-d up' she warmed up for 10 minutes on the X-Trainer whilst watching some iTunesU  video lectures  on anatomy courtesy of her iPhone.

 It's a tad 'dated' (as GN doesn't think that the Professor is in 70's fancy Dress) but it helps her with her Anatomy Revision no end! The iTunesU stuff is fab actually. There is one lecture (audio) about 'Why Zebras Don't Get Ulcers?' (or something like that-fascinating and FREE!)...

Once that was done, she moved to the treadmill for a 20 minute fast, yet 'steady state' (as in pretty much the same pace throughout) run. Oooh, it was tough going to begin with as most workouts are, however Gym Ninja knows that she needs to give herself at least 5 minutes to get used to the idea of running, and then once that 5 minutes has passed well, she can just carry on. So she did. Of course, within moments someone who had bathed in Deep Heat turned up & floored all gym goers within a 2 mile radius...WHY? Please-if you hurt THAT much that you need Deep Heat slathered all over your body, then maybe rest up at home?

The 20 minute run seemed longer than 20 minutes. Maybe the man strolling on the treadmill next to GN made it seem longer? He was walking at 'window shopping' speed. Maybe GN needs to ensure she only uses a treadmill next to someone moving fast??  After 20 minutes Gym Ninja hopped off the treadmill and nipped off for 'a slash', it's NOT a very ladylike term, but deal with it OK?

Once Gym Ninja's nose was powdered, she headed back to the treadmill. You see, there was still an ounce of energy left in GN and she planned on working herself harder than usual. She passed a Shoal by the Resistance Machines. If you recall, the Shoal was a gaggle of young girls who swarm across the gym in a shoal-like fish formation, never once leaving each other alone. They were stood millimeters away from another shoal-this time a male Shoal.  This Shoal consisted of 5 teenage boys, all in matching white vest tops and bermuda shorts. They too were moving across from machine to machine in a formation, and as one trained the rest huddled around him in a semi-circle. The Girl Shoal watched the Boy Shoal and moved as they did...with a safe space of 2 machine widths between them at all times of course.  Bless. Gym Ninja made a mental note to NEVER even attempt to go into the Hydropool if both Shoals were in...could be like a teenage 'behind the bikesheds' moment in foamy hot water format! EEEK!

Back on the treadmill, Gym Ninja scrolled through her iPhone (that is now sadly broken, but that is too traumatic to talk about seeing as her replacement one today immediately then developed the exact same identical fault as the original, so is still 'ongoing' *sob), and decided she'd do a constructive interval run. She picked iTread Set 21, 30 minutes of Run Intervals....downloaded as a pay as you go option from  which is a fantastic site if you fancy a bit of someone shouting in your ear as to what speed and incline you should be walking/jogging/running at!  The music is totally naff, but the workout you get is hard! So off she run run, upping and lowering the speed, as per instructed.  You can ONLY imagine how much of the old Endorphins were galloping around Gym Ninja's system after completing that! Fantastic!

Today, Gym Ninja made another juice...took photos to show you all, yet due to the problem with her iPhone and it having wiped everything off her handset, the photos are sadly lost *sigh*. T'was a concoction that mixed 4 carrots, 2 sticks of nasty old celery (NOT a celery fan), 2 leaves of cabbage, a good old beetroot and an apple. Tasted fab again and was a gorgeous frothy red colour.  Not sure what it was supposed to do other than kind of rinse you out, but it did make Gym Ninja's tongue turn red. In fact, maybe GN should also post tongue picture to go along with juice pictures? Have YOU bought your juicer yet?

Right-Ninja Over & Out as she needs to hot-foot it back to Apple to get this issue sorted once & for all! She will be back tomorrow with an update as to her new scales weigh-in. Ooer!

Gym Ninja xx

Thursday, 21 January 2010

Nice Ninja is back! didn't like yesterday's sign off did you?
Gym Ninja can tell!
(Scroll down a bit if you didn't get around to reading it yesterday as GN has added this blog early in the day to take away the nasty blog taste in your mouth from her being a big meanie to you all yesterday)

Gym Ninja got harsh and went all scaremongering on you to kind of shock those of you still at the 'Hmmm, I really should do some exercise yet shall just eat this Mars Bar' instead type stage of motivation.

She wanted to shock you into realising that you only get one body to live in and that there are no refunds or replacements if you break that one. (Well, can YOU find the receipt? Exactly!)  She wants you to embark on a healthier lifestyle so you can feel how fantastic it is. After all, we all started from where you are and yet we all became 'hooked' somehow on the changes, and make the effort to work out even when we feel lazy or fed up. We all used to shovel chocolate and junk and processed foods into our mouths (and yes, maybe at times still do although admittedly less often), and yet we all now try and pick the healthier food option and enjoy eating it.  So you see? We know how it is when you are yet to start and feel 'unconvinced' it's worth the effort. Plus the fact we changed like this & stayed like this means that there are good times ahead for you ok? Or else, why would we do it?   It's ENJOYABLE in the end, Gym Ninja promises you that! Just remember-changing EVERYTHING at once is a true ticket to failure. Make one or two changes, get used to them, then come back for more ok?

Okey Dokey. Time out! Back to the faffy blog style. No more scaries for a while.. ;-)

Gym Ninja went to the gym the other day and nearly trod on a Personal Trainer. Don't you just HATE  it when that happens? There was one lying on the floor all 'abandoned'. Not where you expect to find a Personal Trainer is it?   You kind of expect that they will be strutting around the gym, showing clients quirky exercises to do, encouraging people, chatting with people....Gym Ninja guesses that at some point maybe even Personal Trainers lie on the floor like a normal person though?

So WHY was this PT on the floor, Gym Ninja hears you ask? Well, the PT was working it seemed. A flurry of abdominal exercises were going one, although GN is not entirely sure as to whether the ones being performed were particularly safe OR effective.  This was due to the positioning, plus the 'speed' at which the exercises were being done. Gym Ninja means, really rapidly. Too rapidly to be working anything other than momentum!  This is an added pressure to a PT. People watch you train. They watch you when you wear your Personal Trainer T Shirt. They also watch you when you are NOT on duty. GN knows this from her time spent working in the fitness industry....allow GN to explain...this will benefit both existing Personal Trainers AND those of you considering hiring one (it'll give you tips on what to look out for).

Potential clients are everywhere. They do not just research a PT because they are wearing their uniform & are on duty that day. No, potential clients are always musing over which PT to choose to train them, so in that respect they are always watching!! ALWAYS watching...!

They sneak a look in the changing rooms to see what the Personal Trainer's body actually looks like naked (which in turn gives them idea of whether The PT knows what they are talking about as results 'speak for themselves'). Oh and yeh that may sound pervy, but GN has been on the receiving end of that herself, and in some cases when she worked at a particular Health Club, had to actually hide in the individual changing rooms whenever she got dressed the staring got that bad!! One time she turned around in the shower cubicle and saw the steamed up silhouette of a Gym Goer standing right outside her shower cubicle, blatantly staring through the glass to get a peek at her body to 'see if she knows what she's talking about'. (well that's what the woman told Gym Ninja when she confronted her!) People are just curious!

They also sneak a look when the PT is off duty doing their own exercises in the gym. If they see a PT doing a move that they have not seen the PT's own clients do or maybe think the PT wouldn't 'allow' their clients to do because they aren't good/effective, then they form an opinion that either what that PT teaches is nonsense which is why they don't follow it themselves, OR, that the PT doesn't practice what they preach. Both of these things are not helpful when expanding the PT business! If you are a PT, always make sure you exercise with correct form, pick up and lower the weights in a safe way, and don't do anything you'd be too scared to prescribe to a client. It should be second nature to you anyway. if it isn't then maybe tidy up your technique a bit.

Potential PT clients sneak a look if they see a PT eating or drinking something too.  They are RELENTLESS in their nosiness (or fact finding if you prefer to call it that??) You know, to get ideas and tips as to what they too should be ingesting?? Fantastic news if they watch the PT eat a healthy meal or quaff water and protein shakes. Now that PT is seen as a healthy role model. Not so good if they catch the PT scoffing a chocolate bar, eating a sausage roll or sitting down to a bowl of chips with a can of coke!! It makes the PT who eats junk seem a hypocrite. You may think GN is exaggerating somewhat when she says that last part, but she has actually worked with PTs who scoff bags of crisps, skip meals, order in takeaways every'd be surprised! 'Think on' if you spot your local Personal Trainer mooching around the supermarket. Nip past and take a peek into their it full of fresh fruit, vegetables, dairy and meat? Or is it clinking with the amount of wine bottles hiding under boxes of Sugar Puff Cereals and Wagon Wheels?

They (the PT stalkers) also sneak a look if they see the PT out socially. Now everyone deserves time off for good behaviour. Some PTs do drink alcohol and treat themselves occasionally to naughty snacks.  That's fine as they are actuall human as opposed to the bionic machines you may think that they are. However, the PT again needs to be aware that if they are putting themselves in this position of 'authority', or even in some cases, 'up on a pedestal', then they need to go one step further. Almost become a cartoon version of a healthy person living the healthy lifestyle, or else you lose something...credibility......and in doing so, quite possibly another potential client.

So, PTs out there...'be aware' of what you do, regardless of whether you are wearing your Personal Trainer T Shirt or not. You are being scrutinized by people who may be considering hiring you. They may be undecided between hiring YOU and hiring that other PT at the gym they've seen. However they have just seen you scoff down a KFC Bucket and smoking a fag outside the gym who do you think they are likely to choose now? Unfair it may be, but the client does have a point.......

So.....yeh........the PT was on the floor doing crunches ten to the dozen. Had that PT gained or lost clients by their actions? Hmm, maybe it depends on how knowledgeable the potential client is? If they are a Newbie then maybe they do not realise that rapid exercises that do not fully work the muscles but instead use momentum to do, are fruitless? Maybe they will just see that the PT 'appears' to be working out and hire them regardless? What will happen? This person may get average results. They may just think that spending their money on this Personal Trainer isn't getting them the results they'd hoped for and quit. They may decide that ALL Personal Trainers are a waste of space and then give those good ones in the Industry a bad  name (which is unfair as there are plenty of excellent PTs out there!). That is sad when that happens but unavoidable when there are some PTs out there who are, for want of a better phrase, a tad naff!

But if YOU are shopping around and wanting to adopt a Personal Trainer of your own, maybe start to watch them (in a non-restraining order style of a way) when they are NOT working on duty? See if they practice what they preach? See if they seem to be in good shape? If they are not; if they have little muscle definition, or are a bit pudgy, or look a funny shade of sallow as opposed to radiating health, then mull that over........? A Personal Trainer is for LIFE, not just for a quick fix!

Oooh! Gym Ninja NEVER knows where her blog goes until she starts to type. Who knew she'd harp on about how to stalk/adopt/select a Personal Trainer eh

What she ACTUALLY thought she was blogging about today was the fact she's spotted a few deals on Maximuscle for those of you hooked already on their supplements, and for those of you considering buying them but are a bit strapped for cash right now?

The First Deal (and Gym Ninja has added a link at the top right of this blog so you can go research it and order direct), is for CYCLONE! Ideal for building muscle fast and getting results in a matter of weeks. Mostly guys use this to be fair, so if you are a guy and want to pack on muscle and look good as quickly as possible, and have your diet and exercise regime sorted, then go clicky clicky on the Cyclone picture and see what you think.
The offer is,  BUY 3 tubs of CYCLONE for £90. You save £41.97 an also get free delivery.

The second offer Gym Ninja wanted to share is... PROMAX!!!! YAY! GN's favourite protein powder in the WHOLE world! Again, she has added a clicky photo of a tub of Promax  on the top right of this blog that will take you direct to the site and product so you can mooch about.

Buy 2 tubs and GET ONE FREE! Saves you £33.99 AND you get free delivery. SO you can maybe try out the new flavours too? OTHER fab thing is...that if you click the links to Maximuscle here on this blog page and then place your first order, by entering the code SMLHS you will get £5 off the value (assuming you have ordered £30 or more).

See? Gym Ninja is being nice to you and playing Good Ninja Bad Ninja with her blog posts ;-)

BIG hugs. You did well to survive yesterdays blog post. But before GN goes, she'd just like to say a special hello to 'N'. 'N' knows who they are. "N' rang Gym Ninja earlier to thank her for the nasty blog post that has sparked off something and is now heading out to load up on some fruit to try out a juice recipe or two! A step in the right direction and one of may future steps Gym Ninja hopes.  Gym Ninja is PROUD! Now 'N', click on the freebie Gym Pass also here on this blog and go test drive a gym session for free!!!!!!!!

Toodle pip!

Gym Ninja xx

Wednesday, 20 January 2010

Big Fat Blog Post! (& the one that gets nasty at the end!)

Did you eat with the same 'gay abandon' today having read yesterday's blog about obesity? Yup. Makes you think eh? Saying that, Gym Ninja ate like she had hollow legs today. All healthy, but again, remember from yesterday's blog post that an excess of ANYTHING can make a potential Gym Ninja into a Gym Lump. Gym Ninja needs to wind it in somewhat!!!!!

She started today with another magical juice creation. Do not fret. Gym Ninja will get bored of blogging about the juice recipes soon enough, (that and she is due to run out of ingredients shortly!). So......what stuff in her fridge helped her decide what to make?


2 unpeeled organic apples
1 small unpeeled beetroot
1 medium or half a large cucumber
1 handful of spinach
1 handful of watercress

And what did this create...? (apart from a rather rude photo much to GN's amusement!) 

'Pumping Iron'.

Hey-don't blame GN for the naff name. It's what the book calls it!
Named as a tonic for dull grey days (GN checked outside and yep-t'was one of those alright). The book also says that cucumber isn't the faffy waste of space we all think it is, but is in fact an important 'healing vegetable'.  The juice is super-rich in Vit C, iron, and folic acid. The betacarotene protects against cancers, and it also provides an instant hit of natural sugars for that healthy boost. Ideal for bodybuilders (yeh right-can you imagine them supping on this?)vegetarians, serious exercisers and women planning to get themselves up the duff. (pregnant, to give it the more recognised label!). 

Here you go...looks similar to yesterdays one eh? That'll be the beetroot! Makes you wonder what my insides look like...

Oh and it wouldn't be a blog without the obligatory bubbly top shot!

So did it taste nice? Yes it did thank you very much. It didn't taste like cucumber sandwiches either which is how GN thought it may taste. It was rather lovely.

OK-show's over! Time for Obesity Blog Part Two...

We last discussed what the causes of Obesity were remember? Well, adding to the Dietary Habits we can also add this...

Physical Inactivity!
Oh you SO knew that was coming! WHo is HONESTLY surprised by finding out just now that not moving can contribute to obesity? Uh huh, so you ALL know that moving around is a good thing and sitting at home racking up hours of TV is a baaaaaad thing yes? you still weld your bum to the sofa on a nightly basis? Do you????????

'They' class physical ACTIVITY as one of the main factors for maintaining weight loss. Tis also found that when ickle baby rats exercise at the early stage of their life (of course they are at the early stage of life, otherwise they wouldn't be ickle rat would they, they'd be old rats), that in itself depressed the creation of fat cells.  Cute rat fact eh?

 So if you exercise during calorie restriction then not only can you speed up your fat loss, you also protect that all-important valuable lean tissue (or fat free mass as they call in in 'the trade'). That's a good thing! You burn up more calories when you have more lean tissue donchaknow. You look kinda fab too!  Daily activity can actually account for up to 40% of your daily calorie expenditure too!  So MOVE!!!

Right-so thats eating and drinking too much, not moving very much...what else fits into the Obesity Cause Category?


*Sharp intake of breath from you all*

Ahh, the old 'BIG BONES' malarkey! Is Gym Ninja actually letting this count as a genuine reason? a way, maybe yeh! Allow GN to explain as there are a few bits and bobs to cover in this category...

Everyone has a different resting metabolic rate. This is the rate you burn calories if you just blobbed out on the bed and didn't move all day. The calories your body burns just by existing.  If yours isn't as high as mine, then you're not gonna need as much food are you? (You CAN increase it increasing your LEAN tissue...aka muscle!) 

Chuck in your body type (endo, ecto or mesomorph) and that is also a sign that those who lean towards ENDOMORPH gain body fat easier than the others. Damned genetics eh?

Your leptin hormone. This is the clever blighter that sends messages to the brain saying 'full up now!:-stop your eating Mr!'. Now IF you are unlucky enough to have a genetic defect in your leptin production or receptors then this can lead to overeating (as the message of being full isn't getting to the brain) and obesity. 

Ghrelin (no relation to the furry 'don't feed after midnight Gremlins as seen on TV)...another hormone-like thingie that links to eating habits. If you fast or restrict energy then this baby's levels increase in your body, which in turn means your body will then prefer to burn CARBS rather than FAT, and not only that, it decreases energy expenditure (what you burn off) and increases FAT storage. AHHHR! Give Gym Ninja an over-zealous furry Gremlin rather than a wayward Ghrelin hormone any day! If you are unlucky enough to have that old genetic abnormality that affects it then it can over-stimulate the ghrelin that circulates through you and cause the problems mentioned above.

Gene Mutation. Ooer! Scientists suggest that there MAY be people who are just genetically predispositioned to become obese. Of course this is NOT a reason to say "Ah well, I'm just supposed to be obese" as you cram in your next cream cake, no more than I hope you'd sit there in the Dole Queue saying "Ah well, I am just supposed to be broke and out of work". This is an area of ongoing research so don't count your chubby chickens if you're holding out for this to be your reason!

The 'Set Point' Theory. Tis suggested that our brains continually adjust the metabolism and behaviour to maintain a target weight range that is set within your fixed genetic programme. Those believers suggest that although you can drag yourself out of the confines of your set point, in the end your body will drag you back to it! Well, stick THAT theory up your a*se baby! Gym Ninja is not letting ANYTHING drag her into a more rotund shape! 

AH, now we are moving away from the Genetics and into....

Smoking and Alcohol.

NOW we're talking!

Oh, wipe that sulky look off your face! You KNOW This one! They affect how you store fat!  Regular smoking increases the chances of abdominal weight gain. A big fat tum!  By how much you enquire? Well, twice as much for men, and two and  a half times as much for ladies.  SO much for that 'oooh it's slimming' nonsense people come out with as they light up a cigarette!
Booze too? Uh huh! Over 4 units a day of alcohol is associated with weight gain...ESPECIALLY in women under 35. EEEK!  Doesn't seem as much fun now does it? 

SO, thus endeth today's blog on Obesity.  Have you been motivated to make at least one or two changes to what you eat & drink, and how often you exercise? No? OK-time for Gym Ninja to get serious.....

Think of it this way..... 

Is that TV show you watch religiously whilst sitting down all evening, and all the soaps on TV you cannot possibly miss, again slobbing out on the sofa as you watch them  (thus staying at home and avoiding the gym in case Rita off Corrie has a fab plotline) REALLY worth nudging into obesity for? Obesity with all the risks associated with it remember.

That Ready Meal you have just bunged into the microwave that leaves you ravenous within an hour due to the fact it has no real nutrients so your body craves something else...? You know, that meal, as you've been out all day and are too tired to cook? That same Ready Meal that is so pumped full of chemicals you get addicted to it?  That Ready Meal that has MSG in it and that Diet Soda containing Aspartame you're washing it down with?  Is that really so nice that you don't actually mind it increasing your fat storage, whilst burning a hole in the part of your brain that controls hunger? 
Pardon? IS it really?

Is the cigarette you are lighting up to accompany that beer or glass of wine you always drink to 'relax' you, really worth increasing your body's ability to store fat for? How relaxed will you honestly be knowing it's increasing your weight and putting you at risk of all those life threatening diseases and conditions associated with obesity and inactivity?

STILl not convinced it's worth making a few changes here and there with your lifestyle?  "you only live once-may as well enjoy it" ???

Not bothered if you die early? After all, who's to know if your time has come early, you may say? Certainly not YOU as you'll be dead. let us assume you don't mind causing pain and sadness to those you leave behind to cry because you're no longer here and write things in the Condolences card like 'taken too soon'? You're ok with that right? Death doesn't scare you!!!

So, How about looking at it this way?  Imagine NOT dying from any of those conditions yet. Imagine falling sick. Imagine having to go in and out of hospital for treatment that may be uncomfortable, scary, painful or humiliating? Imagine how that will make you feel. How being ill means you cannot work an dthat causes huge money problems for you all. How scared you'll be falling ill and not being able to work. What happens if you have to have operations and take medication that has a whole number of side effects too? God, even WORSE, imagine the partner you live with seeing you in such a bad state? Imagine if they have to wash and dress you? Take you to the toilet? Clean you up when you make a mess by oozing one of many bodily fluids due to illness? Or if you lose control of your bladder or bowels due to medications/or illnesses associated with weight gain? Imagine living with the illness long enough to see your family scared, worried, sad, distraught....?

Do you have your motivation yet??????

Gym Ninja x
Tis for your own good GN came down all heavy at the end. GN knows you all have an interest in H&F otherwise you'd not read this blog. She knows most of you take care of yourself and that we cannot ALL do everything right. We ALL have our vices. But just see if you can make one change and GN promises she will be all fun & frolicks tomorrow. OK? Deal x