Monthly Archives: November 2013

Free from recipes – Warning! May aid weight loss!

free from recipe book cover photoIt is estimated that 75% of the worlds population have food intolerances. Intolerances can be to wheat, gluten, dairy, additives, preservatives and colourings. Symptoms of intolerances include bloating, constipation, nausea, lethargy, headaches, migraines, mood swings, weight gain, irritability, digestive problems and cognitive function problems. The recipes in this book are suitable for people with intolerances to wheat, gluten, dairy and fat. Also suitable for those wishing to eat healthier and has also been known to help lose weight too.

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Happy clients

happyfaceHere is a selection of testimonies from happy clients who attended Sarah’s pregnancy pilates classes. Have a read and see how pilates during pregnancy can benefit you too.

I carried on doing Pilates with Sarah up to 37 weeks (out of 39 weeks of pregnancy). Pilates helped to keep me feeling positive and energised. Sarah is very knowledgeable about techniques and can offer safe guidance, which is comforting at a time such as this. I have had 3 children and was considerably older by the time I had my third child. I did not exercise at all throughout my second pregnancy and noted a marked difference with the third pregnancy; I believe Pilates made that difference. It had a  huge, positive effect on me, both mentally and physically.

My youngest child is now 8 months old and after a 2nd caesarean section I needed someone who knew how to rehabilitate me after such a major operation. Sarah slowly, gently, started the rehabilitation process with Pilates and once I had strengthened a little, she stepped up the process. For the past 2 months I have been back training 3 -4 times a week with both Sarah and Dave. Separately, they are working on both my fitness and my figure. I cannot praise them both enough. If I suffer any kinds of aches, pains or illnesses they will both be there to share their expertise and will go to great lengths to help to eradicate any discomfort. Sarah even helps me with diet plans and we often discuss how and what to eat. . .  If only I was disciplined enough to stick to it I would have my perfect figure by now.’

Lisa Samuels

 I did pilates classes with Sarah throughout my pregnancy, finishing the week my daughter was born, having not done pilates before. Her class focused on strengthening the core muscles, maintaining a good posture (something that I found really useful especially in later pregnancy), engaging pelvic floor muscles, and controlling breathing. Some of the exercises we did were identical to those shown to me by a physiotherapist when I needed physio for lower back pain, which was fantastic. I found the classes very calming and relaxing, but at the same time I gained a lot of strength, flexibility and fitness from attending. This gave me a huge amount of confidence in seeing what my pregnant body could do. I used the different exercises during labour and had an active, straightforward birth. Sarah is friendly, enthusiastic and very professional. She’s really knowledgeable and adapted the exercises for me throughout my pregnancy. I can’t recommend her pilates classes highly enough.

Louise Ball

After becoming pregnant my midwife advised me to continue pilates as it is one of the best forms of exercise during pregnancy. Sarah’s classes are great as she understands which moves I can and can’t do at different stages of my pregnancy. It’s helped keep back pain away and keep me active in a relaxed environment.

Sarah Shields

I started attending pregnancy Pilates class with Sarah after being diagnosed with pelvic girdle pain. I really enjoyed the classes and my physiotherapist was extremely pleased as it really helped me and my pain didn’t get much worse as my pregnancy progressed.
I was lucky enough to have a nice quick labour, and my midwife said the Pilates helped my body prepare, an added bonus was that my tummy started to go back quite quickly too!
I’ll definitely be taking the post-natal class as soon as I have the all clear.
Helen Bradley

I started Pilates with Sarah after I had torn a disc in my lower back and was recommended Pilates by my physiotherapist. Sarah was fantastic at welcoming me to the group and was very attentive to my specific needs. I found that within a couple of weeks my back felt almost good as new, and by the end of the 6 week course my whole body felt stronger and really toned. I was hooked from then! I would recommend Sarah’s classes to anyone! When I became pregnant, after the first trimester, I started at Sarah’s Pregnancy Pilates and after just the first class I had the best night’s sleep since I’ve been pregnant! It really helps me to keep a good posture (especially with an ever growing belly!) but also is very relaxing and calming. Sarah maintains a brilliant balance of friendliness and professionalism, I look forward to my weekly classes and wouldn’t know what to do without them!

Kate Lewis 

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The benefits of pilates during pregnancy

pilates pregnancy

Pilates has numerous benefits for mums to be. A healthy and active mum to be offers her baby the best start in life as the health benefits of exercise are passed onto the unborn child.

Pilates works to strengthen the abdominals and pelvic floor muscles aiding an easier delivery of baby and help prevent abdominal separation (more on this next week). Strengthening the abdominals will also help quicken post natal recovery and return your body back to its pre baby state.

Pilates will help prevent and alleviate back pain associated with pregnancy by strengthening and realigning the postural muscles. A good posture during pregnancy will help both mum to be and baby to be comfortable with less aches and pains for mum to be.

Pilates uses thoracic breathing which is encouraged during pregnancy to open up the chest, create  less pressure in the abdominals and increase the space for the foetus to grow. Pilates breathing also helps with breathing during in labour aiding the delivery of baby.

Pilates is also relaxing and reduces stress levels which can only be a good thing for mum to be and baby.

If you are interested in trying pilates and are pregnant please feel free to contact Sarah to discuss further.

Stay healthy.


Obese children – its not their fault!

After reading last weeks local paper (Macclesfield Express) I was left mortified. I could not believe the statistics I was reading. 16% of primary school leavers in Macclesfield are classed as obese! And 8% of 4 to 5 years are obese! This is crazy! These children are going to die before their parents.

Obesity increases the risk of so many serious illnesses such as cancers, diabetes and heart conditions, and other health problems such as arthritis, chronic back pain and inflammatory conditions. Are these children not being taught anything by their parents anymore? Parents should be encouraging their children to be more active, walking to school would be a start! Parents should also be encouraging their children to make better food choices and be making meals using fresh ingredients rather than ready meals (I sound like Jamie Oliver).

The parents should be leading by example, studies have found that if parents are obese there is an increased likelihood that the child will also be obese. So if you love your children help them and make some changes before its too late.


Dave completes the Capesthorn Half Marathon

The last time I wrote a blog to you guys I was just starting out on my new goal of running a marathon in April next year, well I thought I would give you an update on how my training has been going!
I reached my first major milestone this month when I ran the Capesthorn Half Marathon, the first time I have run the distance since originally entering the Reading Half Marathon many years ago. A race that I actually had to pull out of due a pretty nasty skiing injury a few weeks prior that resulted in me trying to turn my knee around the wrong way!
This run wasn’t without its own trials. The first problem I found in training was that I needed to take on fuel much sooner than I had thought. I have found that anything more than an hour on the roads and my performance really takes a hit so I have grown to love energy gels and the burst of fuel that they give you when in need! I will attempt to write another blog in the near future about the different types of convenient fuels you can use to keep your performance high in endurance sports but for now gels are my only experience! I’ve got to say I don’t enjoy taking them but they are a necessary evil!
The second problem to hit me was a stinker of a cold about 10 days before race day. Being a man I have to say it was like hell on earth! Not being able to sleep without waking up in coughing fits, feeling totally lethargic and the rest of the fun that comes with a cold! I had two options, train through it or let in run its course. I went for the latter and took a full 10 days off training, not teaching any of my classes and definitely no running!
The day before the race I was still not 100% but it was the first time I felt able to get out and go for a jog if I would allow myself. Race day came and I told myself to ignore the last 10 days and focus on the job in hand. Heading off hard I had decided to run at the pace I had originally targeted myself with, and cleared the half way point just over 45 minutes in. The second half was a different matter and despite my new friend the energy gel my mile splits got slower and I finished the race in a shave over 1 hour 45 minutes.
Although the final time isn’t what I wanted I have learnt a few things from this race. Bringing my running to a stop from such a long way out wasn’t my plan, however it has helped me realise that I can begin to ease back sooner than I thought and still keep the benefits of all those training miles. Secondarily, I am probably quicker than I thought, the cold is still in my system 7 days later and all things considered I set a reasonable time. I’ve definitely got a sub 1 hour 40 in me the next time I race!
I’m giving myself a couple of weeks of easy training now before picking things back up in earnest in December. I will let you know how I do.
Fitness professional, Pilates and Yoga studio owner, sports therapist and nutritionist. Love anything fitness related #Pilates #yoga #Macclesfield