Health

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Joe Wicks: ‘I love a burger and chips’

Joe Wicks The Body Coach reveals his surprise food secrets, his exercise dos and don’ts – and why bathroom scales should be banned!

Age: 30

Height: 5ft 10in

Weight: ‘I don’t own a pair of scales. I call them the sad step, because they only make people sad.’

Breakfast: ‘Post-workout, I have a big bagel or porridge oats.’

Lunch: ‘I grill a bit of fish or some meat, or make a quick cheese and courgette omelette.’

Dinner: ‘I love a Thai green curry – easy to make, but proper tasty.’

Snacks: ‘A handful of nuts.’

What’s your health mantra?  You can’t out-train a bad diet. It doesn’t matter how much exercise you do, if you put the wrong food inside you, you’ll never burn fat.

How much exercise per week do you recommend for your female clients?  Three to four 20-minute HIIT [high-intensity interval training] sessions a week. They get your heart rate pumping and can burn fat for hours.

Do you do HIIT sessions yourself?  Yes, and weights, too. I work out five days a week because I love the way it makes me feel, but my body’s used to that intensity. I don’t have a car, so I walk or get the train and that keeps me active, too.

What’s the number one tip for anyone hoping to lose weight?  Prep like a boss. Spend a couple of hours each week planning your meals, organising the best time to fit in your exercise, shopping for the right foods and preparing your meals in advance. Then you’ve got no excuse not to stick to your goals.

Does your own weight ever fluctuate?  I don’t weigh myself. ever. I know when I’ve got a bit bigger around the waist, especially after a holiday blowout, but I just get back to eating right and exercising and it melts off.

Why are you so anti weighing scales?  Scales only know your weight, they don’t know your body composition – muscle weighs more than fat. I’ve seen women on my plan drop two dress sizes, have a flat stomach and no bingo wings, yet the scales say they’ve only lost 2lb. so get off the sad step!

Which superfoods do you recommend?  I’m not really about superfoods, I’m about people eating the right thing for their bodies. My clients eat butter, coconut milk and good fats, carbs and loads of veg. Too many people think there’s a quick fix – eat the latest superfood berry and your life will be different. Er, no, it won’t!

Do you ever have cheat days?  Yes, I’m only human. I especially love a burger and chips. The key is to not let a bad day become a bad week.

What’s your opinion on sugar being the new ‘evil’ food?  Fizzy drinks are awful and it really gets my goat when I see people leaving the gym after a great workout, drinking a bottle of fizzy, sugar-filled energy drink. none of my recipes have sugar in. I may use some honey, but there’s never granulated sugar added.

Which diets would you definitely not advocate?  I don’t advocate any diets. I hate diets. They don’t work. you starve yourself, lose weight, start eating normally again and put all the weight, plus more, back on. On my SSS Plan, you eat more food, train right and burn fat.

Some women have said your SSS programme helped them conceive…  That was crazy but also a bit misreported. It’s medically proven that healthy women have a better chance of conceiving, but I don’t want people thinking this is a surefire way to get pregnant. even the fittest men and women can have problems conceiving.

You’ve teamed up with Holland & Barrett…  I’m their nut guru! Nuts are a good source of monounsaturated fat, which is essential for giving you energy, protecting your organs, absorbing vitamins and for maintenance of hair, skin and nails. And you can eat them in so many different ways, whether that’s whizzing them up into a smoothie or adding them to your main meal.

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