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As a time-short Londoner, I frequently struggle to honour my work-life balance, let alone stay healthy. I feel trapped when I can’t find time to relax and look after my wellbeing. However, Tuomas Isoaho from Clay & Lime, one of London’s top personal trainers and highly sought after nutritionists, has helped me change my approach to staying fit and healthy, giving me advice on how to live well and maximise time.
Tuomas challenges conventional and ‘trendy’ training methods, promising to help Londoners achieve a lean, strong and healthy body through education, smart training and splitting fact from fiction. Just because you hurt or cannot walk the day after an exercise session doesn’t mean you have had a great workout – in his own words, he advises: get fit, not broken! He believes that your first concern should be your health, everything else you want will follow.
Tuomas is impressive, his client base spans London and New York, with both individuals and whole companies subscribing to his method. Additionally, not only is he a highly qualified personal trainer – he studied Personal Training in Stockholm at one of the world’s leading Personal Training academies and Sport Science in London (BSc (Hons)/Middlesex University – London Sport Institute) – he is also a certified nutritionist and has his own diet book, Clay & Lime. Tuomas focuses on smart training and promises that you’ll probably end up making less of an effort than you have made before, while seeing results you dream of. His programs and exercises are carefully designed and he’ll show you how to exercise smartly, with purpose.
With Tuomas’ profound knowledge of all things health and fitness related, I asked him for some tips which are not only practical and achievable, but also make a difference. Here’s what he shared:
1) One of the best moves for all-over toning is a single leg dead lift, which tones your bum, hamstrings, lower and upper back. In addition to that, it also works on your core strength and balance. Another effective move is a reverse lunge with lateral raise, working both your arms and legs.
2) In order to maintain a slim and strong body, Tuomas advises walking as much as possible – he calls this ‘non-planned exercise’ as it should blend into your day and be practically effortless. As much as we are meant to use our muscles, we are designed to walk. Walking is the aerobic exercise we need to do for a healthy heart and lungs. If there are stairs take them. If you think you are saving 20 minutes by taking the bus you aren’t. Every 20 minutes you walk will make your life longer and more enjoyable. Aim for 10,000 steps (it’s easy to keep track with a pedometer) or about 8 km a day. Remember, every step counts. On top of ‘non-planned exercise’, Tuomas recommends that doing at least two hours of ‘planned’ exercise (resistance training) a week should be sufficient.
3) Food is medicine – nutrition plays a huge role in realising a healthy lifestyle. Through making unhealthy choices, there are inevitable consequences.
4) Strive to place equal amounts of importance on both exercise and diet, you cannot focus on one and forget about the other. Some health professionals will tell you a fit body is down to as little as 20% exercise and 80% diet, but Tuomas believes that both are equally important.
5) Try to stay motivated – the latest studies show that we get bored of exercising after 30 minutes. The good news is we don’t have to go beyond that. Stop at 30 and stay motivated. It is better leaving your session ready for the next one than hoping it never comes.
6) Tuomas’ method is all about smart thinking. He believes that smart training is upheld by having the right and informed approach to exercise and food
7) Tuomas’ health mantra is: ‘The only reason to live life is to live it healthy. That is living to the fullest’. He believes that people are at their best when they live effectively and have an agenda – the source of ultimate pleasure should always be your health.
8) The best piece of health advice Tuomas has ever received is to exercise and eat well frequently because nothing happens without consistency.
9) One of the most common health myths is ‘No pain. No gain’. Tuomas used to workout hard in the gym – ironically, through changing his approach and exercising smart, he’s now a lot fitter, stronger and healthier. There is no need for ‘I cannot walk in the morning’ type of pain – your muscles do not need to be stressed to that extent to get amazing results. It isn’t sustainable, and someone who is not able to walk after a training session will not gain superior results to someone who is. Check out this great article he wrote on High intensity interval training vs. Steady state cardio for fat loss, which looks at how hard you should exert your body in order to see the right results.
Health equals sustainable exercise (both planned and non-planned), clever nutrition, and a clear mind. Tuomas’ method is brilliant and he truly proves that after everything has been stripped off, the sole thing you are left with is your health. A healthy body equals a fit body.