In case you missed the news, this year Webgains is partnering up with GregorySheaf – the dynamic duo representing England in beach volleyball at this year’s Commonwealth Games. Chris and Jake are currently preparing for the CWG by participating in series of high-profile events around the world. Last time we heard from them, they were training in L.A., getting ready to smash the competition at the first tournament of the season in Florida.
However, before they left the UK, Chris and Jake visited us at our London HQ, to tell us all about treating your body well and eating like an athlete. Chris Gregory is a qualified nutritionist, and his passion started when he realised that he was struggling on a day-to-day basis with sustaining energy, focus, recovery and sleep, despite training professionally. His ambition, outside of excelling on the court, is to spread the message to make a difference in personal health, and that’s how his 7ftcook initiative begun.
Chris started the session off with a quick game, which tested the nutritional knowledge of our team. This has quickly turned into a competition, as the team became very engaged.
Through the quiz, we learned, amongst other things, that use of black pepper (especially the alkaloid piperine found in black pepper) can dramatically increase absorption of selenium, vitamin B, vitamin C, coenzyme Q10 and beta-carotene.
Another interesting tip was an upgrade to the way we cook our vegetables. Instead of boiling our 5-a-day which can lead to some of the vital vitamins leaching out to the water, we should gently steam the veg to lock in all of the good stuff.
We can highly recommend booking a session with Chris, as the next hour was packed with enlightening and fascinating insight on how we can use nutrition to elevate our performance and change our energy levels. To give you even more of a taste of what we learned, here’s a recap of four amazing tips we shared on social media in the run-up to the session with the 7ft cook.
Small tweaks, big gains!
1) The naturally occurring chemical compound responsible for spicy flavour in chilli peppers is called Capsaicin – this pungent compound naturally increases energy expenditure in your body – it burns fat! Eat more spicy chilli for extra natural fat oxidation/burn!
2) Keeping our blood glucose and insulin levels steady can help keep your mind sharp, and energy release efficient, so we’re able to take on the days tasks, challenges and interaction with our consistent best. How do we do it? There are many ways, but one small supporting tip: Cinnamon doesn’t only provide a little flavour to your porridge, tea or yoghurt. It slows the passage of glucose into your bloodstream – which is what we’re after in blood sugar management. Frequently topping up on this spice can also give your skin some extra life!
3) Drinking beetroot juice can increase blood flow to your brain, and reduce a decline in memory. The high concentrations of nitrates also help you perform intensive workouts that require sustained power through improving the use of oxygen by our muscles. Performance of memory or muscle, the nitrates and power of beetroot juice is a potent potion for supporting both like no other!
4) A refreshing habit to potentially bring into the office could be having a prepared range of herbal iced teas stored away in the office fridge! It allows for variation, and the chance to experiment while trying to find a substitute for the high sugar/caffeine habit we’re often exposed to. Also, while living and commuting in London Town (and any other big city), we are exposed to toxins daily in a densely populated and polluted environment. Fluid in the form of herbal tea will support your detoxifying capacity and escort harmful substances stored in fat and skin cells out of the body.
Here at Webgains, we are all about marginal gains and will be definitely using these great tips to elevate our performance throughout 2018. Check this space, as well as our social media, as we will be sharing updates about Chris and Jake’s performance, and more tips on how you can work smarter and use the marginal gains mindset to surpass even your own expectations.