Dominique Lloyd-Walter (former England squash international) works as a personal trainer in and around Surrey
Dominique Lloyd-Walter (former England squash international) works as a personal trainer in and around Surrey

March 2013 newsletter

Hi everyone,Newsletter

Hope you all had a good February and are so far maintaining a fit and healthy lifestyle for 2013. Hope you enjoy the March newsletter....


The importance of your core muscles

Most people would really like to enhance their abdominal muscles (six pack). However, your abs are only one part of the equation....where you really need strength is in your core, both to sustain greater abdominal development and to prevent injury. The core is the hip complex, spine (cervical and thoracic) and all the muscles surrounding those areas. An easy way to think of it is, the core is where the body's centre of gravity is located and where all movement begins. The core can therefore be trained by a multitude of movements beyond ab work because as mentioned, it is where all movement begins. Becoming conscious of this fact in your workouts will lead you to find opportunities for core work in all sorts of places.

Whenever you are working out, you need to use your core and that means you need to both engage it and protect it. Learning to use the 'drawing in manoeuvre' will activate your abs and instantly adjust your posture. The best way to do this is to imagine someone is about to punch you hard in the stomach....this will hopefully cause you to pull in your belly button towards your spine. Engaging this region (the transversus abdominus) is the act of protecting yourself and in turn allows you to form a strong centre from which to perform all manner of movements. In short, your reaction to brace yourself is perfect for engaging the core during exercise.

Away from your workouts, you can also switch on your core muscles by trying to brace them as much as possible. This includes whatever you may be doing....walking from A to B, sitting down at the computer, driving. Every little helps! 


Weight management

Recent research has shown that working out with somebody else present whether that be a training partner, group of people or personal trainer helps you burn far more calories. So try to incorporate somebody else into your sessions at least once a week to ensure you are reaching your maximum capabilities. 


Nutrition tip

If pumping money into the vending machine for crisps and chocolate is becoming too much of a habit for you, then check out You can order boxes of healthy snacks online and be assured that each and every product has the best nutritional profile....lower salt, lower saturated fat and sugar whilst being high in protein and fibre. 



It is a well known fact but one that is often forgotten for whatever reason. However, it is worth remembering that taking your time to eat your food will not only lead to more enjoyment but also to consuming fewer calories. By wolfing down your meals/snacks, you don't give your brain time to register what you have eaten and consequently eat more than is needed leading to dreaded weight gain. Allocate time for your meals/snacks and make sure you have a glass of water to accompany your food to keep yourself fully hydrated (dehydration is often another reason for consuming more calories). 


Quote of the month

"Believe in yourself! Have faith in your abilities! Without a humble but reasonable confidence in your own powers, you cannot be successful or happy."

Norman Vincent Peale 


Fitness tip

If you play a sport like tennis, squash or netball where upper body rotations are key, then medicine ball training will help you up your game by boosting core strength. Plus, it is ideal for working out in pairs making your workouts more fun! 


Star client

This month's star client goes to Emmeline Goulden (a squash player). Emmeline has been training with me for just over a month now and puts maximum effort in to all our gym sessions. As a result, she has already had some good wins on court. Long may it continue! Well done Emm! 


I would like to wish my client Chris Leighton-Davies lots of luck for the 9th March in the 10k MAJOR SERIES assault course. Chris has come a long way over the last couple of years in terms of his fitness so I'm sure he will be fine! 


Finally I am looking forward to working with my client Alexandra Dembitz again later this month after she has been rehabilitating from a skiing injury.


See you all again the first Monday in April!