Chris Bell Personal Trainer

Chris Bell Personal Trainer

Exercise and Nutrition tips and programmes (BSc Sport MSc Nutrition, quality information �)

Personal Trainer specialising in body composition; fat loss and muscle gain, as well as improving the desired components of fitness. I provide training itself, consultation on diet and training and programme planning tailored to the individual to fit around your lifestyle, training goals and physical limitations and capabilities.

Operating as usual


Hi Everyone!

I am currently interviewing men about their experiences with exercise and motivation, social media and body image as part of my PhD and I still need a few more participants!

If you or someone you know would be willing to help out please let me know. It would just consist of an interview online lasting about an hour.

Comment or message me on here or send an email to: [email protected]

Thanks in advance!


5 quick health and well-being tips:

1. Exercise as much as you can reasonably fit into your lifestyle and make it something you enjoy.

2. Don’t stress over your diet but do make it something you enjoy, and enjoy the fruits of in your health and vitality.

3. Avoid extremes. Every action has an equal and opposite reaction, the real value always lies somewhere in the middle ground.

4. Don’t be a sheep. Do what works for you, not what works for others. Sure you can take ideas and tips from elsewhere, but remember you are a unique individual.

5. Be critical of where you get your information from. Style is more salient than substance but it’s only skin deep.


Struggling for motivation at the moment? Here are some things that might help:

- Think about what matters to you, what you really value (hopefully health and well-being are in here!?) and how you can fulfil this with your actions.

- Have a plan. Don’t leave what exercise you’re going to do til last minute, have at least an idea of what type of session you’re going to do when.

- Get some help. You could use a trainer (hi 👋😅), or a friend. Someone to make things more enjoyable, and make you feel like what you’re doing is productive and worthwhile.

- Remember to look after yourself. You have work commitments, family commitments etc and you want to be there for others and get things done. Don’t forget it all starts with you. Be kind to yourself, make some time for your well-being and everything (and everyone) else will only benefit!


January is rarely many people’s favourite month, and this has only been compounded this year by the ongoing pandemic and restrictions for many parts of the world and certainly in the UK.

How do we approach this, not let it get to us and make the most of it?

Some would say that to acknowledge that things are bad (I saw this argument against the “blue Monday phenomena earlier in the week) is a self fulfilling prophecy and will only lead to feeling worse.

We could take some words of advice from Hamlet (although not necessarily a character to take advice form in all walks of life):

“Nothing is either good or bad, but thinking makes it so”.

We could, on the other hand acknowledge that things are not as we would wish, and that’s ok. Trying too hard to pretend it’s fine if it’s not is never going to be sustainable or, ultimately, useful.

We must stay in touch with those we care about, look after ourselves mentally and physically and think about what we really value and enjoy and pursue that in any added time we might have.

Having said this, many of you may be just fine! I have been fortunate to have some exciting new beginnings recently that have transcended the wider situation from a personal perspective. I hope you have had some of these too.

2021 will almost certainly improve as it goes on, but even now, I hope you can find the meaning and enjoyment there is to be had, because it is there.


Tip of the day #168: Different ways to be active (and healthy):

When I started out in PT in my early 20s I was part of a bit of a dogmatic crowd of fitness professionals who were very big on weight training and how it was the best thing for health/weight loss etc and how cardio was not so good.

I still see this mentality around at times, or just the mentality that any one form of exercise is superior to others. Of course to get stronger you have to lift weights but for overall physical and mental health or for weight management? The list is endless!

As I often try to convey, it comes down to what you like, what fits your lifestyle and therefore what is going to be sustainable and have a positive long term effect on your life.


Tip of the day #167: Eating and Drinking over Christmas and New Year:

As always, 1. Do what you want and 2. The answer will be different here for everyone but I’ll leave you with what I do.

I’ll eat more chocolate/cake etc than usual and I may drink a little more than usual here and there. I’ll still be active and train most days (because I like it!), and without counting anything I’ll probably eat a little less at other meals on days when I’ve eaten a little more (partly deliberately and partly I’m listening to my appetite and hunger).

It really depends on your preferences, your psychology and what your festive season looks like. Still, I’m sure the best path for you lies far from extreme restriction and just as far from extreme over indulgence.


Tip of the day #166: Your diet as a whole is what counts, not individual foods:

You’ll be eating anywhere from 1500-3000kcal+ per day from many foods, over multiple meals that contain all of the macro and micronutrients you need (and possible a little too many or too little of some).

Any one food or supplement in the grand scheme of things makes little difference. Sure it might help a little but the consistency and totality of what you eat is by far and away the most important thing.

Thinking that adding or taking away individual foods will make a drastic difference (barring the exceptional case of allergies/intolerances), is ultimately wrong and probably causing unnecessary stress!


Tip of the day #165: Positive self talk

This sprung to mind for me today as I did a very long row that took over an hour, and, as you can imagine, that is a tiring and potentially quite boring hour.

One thing that really helped (and believe it or not I thoroughly enjoyed it) was my inner monologue throughout. Dividing the distance up into chunks with little goals to tick off as I went through, positive words about feeling good, being fit and getting fitter and a sense of accomplishment all did the job.

We do this self talk all day every day and it can be powerful in building us up or putting us down. There’s obviously a chicken and egg problem of does the self talk drive out mood or vice versa but we can only do our best to make it such that we consider positives where we can and do what we want to do.


Tip of the day #164: Is losing weight good for your health?

As usual this is a complicated “it depends” question but isn’t that what makes life fun?

I will say that doing it by extreme, unhealthy means the answer is a blanket no, almost regardless of what what size someone starts out at.

Exercising regularly and eating a nutritious diet are good for our health in themselves and often it’s this rather than the by product of weight loss that is actually going to do the most good.

Sure, with all things the same it’s going to be better for your physical (and probably mental) health to be in and around a “healthy” weight rather than being clinically obese, but there are certainly a lot of grey areas, context and individual differences to consider..


Tip of the day #163: December:

As we hurtle towards the end of what has certainly been the most unpredictable year within my lifetime, we’re left with that strange and yet often predictable month of December.

It’s not a classic for diet and exercise (speaking broadly), with increased darkness, decreasing temperatures and tasty treats left right and centre.

Now as usual, do what you want 😂... but also as usual your mental and physical health will benefit from maintaining (or starting?) regular exercise, getting outdoors when you can and probably not descending into nutritional chaos 24/7. You know this, be good to yourself.

P.s. I’m scared of 22 year old me in a Christmas Jumper


Tip of the day #162: “If you’re certain, you’re certainly wrong because nothing deserves certainty”

That’s a quote from the very wise Bertrand Russell, making the point that we should always hold a degree of humility and slither of doubt.

This is counter to human nature, we are wired to enjoy certainty, it provides a sense of comfort and control and we feel settled when we are sure.

There are many things that for all intents and purposes we can assume are certainties and we can’t spend our lives being unsure of everything all of the time!

Having said this, we stand a better chance of greater understanding and truth by holding even the smallest measure of doubt and an open mind to learning more, hearing different perspectives and changing your view upon hearing good arguments.

How to Boost your Wellbeing Every Day 24/11/2020

How to Boost your Wellbeing Every Day

*New Blog Post*

- How to improve your psychological well-being on a day to day (and within day) basis.

- The theory behind it.

- What are some potential causes of poor well-being?

- What are some potential causes for positive well-being?

Any comments, questions etc. I would love to hear from you.

How to Boost your Wellbeing Every Day Life can be tough. It can be wonderful, but even the most mentally robust of us have our higher and lower points. The COVID-19 pandemic has shone a spotlight on mental health and asked us to cope i…


Tip of the day #161: Spend a little time each day doing something you really enjoy.

Much of life involves doing things to get something else. Working for money (or a promotion, or to produce something for someone else), exercising for health or aesthetic reasons, cleaning, cooking, shopping, looking after others etc.

Now, these things can be inherently enjoyable (exercise for many, interesting work, or an inherent pleasure in housework or looking after others), but I know for many that is rare and these things are ultimately done as a means to an end.

Whatever it is, be it meaningful work, enjoyable exercise, reading a good book, playing a video game, a board game or spending quality time with a friend or loved one, it’s important to spend at least some of our time doing what we want to do just for its sake, not as a means to an end but as an end in itself..


Tip of the day #160: How hard should your cardio be?

Moving at a reasonable pace (e.g. brisk walk, gentle bike ride) will get your heart rate up a little and will have a gentle but positive effect on your health, it won’t do a huge amount for your fitness though.

Something a little harder like a jog or a steady swim will start to bring fitness benefits and shouldn’t take it out of you too much (for engaging well with the rest of your day at work, with family etc).

HIIT training, hard runs, getting out of breath type stuff can bring about performance and fitness increases but bear in mind it will take its toll on your body and isn’t really feasible every day. It will have an impact on the rest of your day and you need to be strategic if you’re incorporating this type of training into your week!


Tip of the day #159: Have meaningful conversations with people.

We all need company, belonging and meaningful relationships and conversations. This is what “relatedness” is, one of the three basic psychological needs.

A lot is made of introverts and extroverts but ultimately I believe this is something of a false dichotomy as we all need close relationships, people to confide in and people to speak with about our interests and passions.

It may be a romantic partner, friends, family, colleagues or even someone you have a professional relationship with and as well as knowing this anecdotally, there’s heaps of research showing that our well-being can instantly improve upon having a quality interaction with someone else.

It might just be something worth paying extra attention to at the current time both for yourself and anyone you feel might benefit from your company.

(And yes that’s bald me many years ago with my Grandmother)


Tip of the day #158: Alcohol:

As I’m sure you know, in moderation, drinking isn’t really an issue and you don’t need grandpa Chris to tell you getting drunk regularly probably isn’t doing you the world of good.

Something that sometimes surprises people is how alcohol affects our metabolism in a strange way. Unlike carbs, fat or protein it can’t be stored in the body. What that means is as soon as you drink it, you have to metabolise it (use it as fuel) to get rid of it.

If you’re using that for fuel then any carbohydrate/fat/protein in the system will have to be stored until the alcohol is dealt with and as drink it not very satiating this can easily lead to over eating..


Tip of the day #157: You don’t need to be perfect (a little bit better is still better).

So 8 hours sleep a night, 7 pieces of fruit and veg per day and exercising 5+ days per week is great advice and all but is it realistic or desirable for everyone?

With different lifestyles and preferences, work hours, family lives etc we must all approach it differently. If exercising most days is a real stretch for you, then once or twice per week is still much better than none!

The same goes for sleep, nutrition etc, doing a bit better will still benefit you, it doesn’t have to be the ideal or nothing, that dichotomous thinking is rarely helpful..

Types of Motivation (and why they matter to you) 09/11/2020

Types of Motivation (and why they matter to you)

*New Blog Post*

This one is all about motivation, and trying to help you understand why we develop some great long term habits and just can't keep going with others.

You will have heard of "intrinsic" and "extrinsic" motivation and this is all about how all motivation falls on a spectrum in between these two extremes.

I honestly think this is so interesting and useful, and not something people tend to know about. I've done my best here to take a reasonably complex psychological theory and present it in an accessible way because its something I think we could all benefit from knowing.

If you have any feedback at all good bad, indifferent or questions I'd love to hear back as well.

Types of Motivation (and why they matter to you) Everything we do is motivated by something. To do nothing is even an active choice, a dismissal of all manner of other options, and will only last until boredom or some other motivator springs us i…


Tip of the Day #156: How “Self Determined” are you?

We do things for many reasons, sometimes we just find things intrinsically enjoyable, someone times we do what we’re told, sometimes we do things to avoid feeling guilty and sometimes we do things we don’t like but we know are good for us.

Doing things we enjoy and doing things that align with our values (and we know are good for us) fall under the category of “internal”. The reason for doing them ultimately comes from within us.

Doing things because we feel guilt or shame if we don’t do them, because others have told us to do them or for a reward are “external” as the reason for acting comes from somewhere outside of ourselves.

The aim is to have as many of our behaviours driven by internal reasons as possible (it is not realistic for absolutely everything), and this is the key to forming long term habits and ultimately good psychological well-being.

(P.s. more to come on this in the form of writing etc, any questions please ask!)


Tip of the day #155: Have an exercise routine (particularly for lockdown).

We all benefit from some degree of structure, and particularly when there’s less inherent structure in our lives, and it’s easier to just not move, planning ahead can really help ensure we stay on top of things.

Pick a manageable amount (for some it might be every day, for others twice per week, that’s fine!), and know what you are going to do on each session ahead of time.

I can almost guarantee you are much more likely to train consistently and train well if this is the case rather than making it up on the fly and seeing how you feel at the time!


Tip of the day #155: Read books!

This is one that will probably have many of you in absolute agreement and others not impressed 😂.

There is no substitute for reading books. Articles, magazines and social media just never quite has the length, depth and ability to hold your attention for enough to to have anywhere near as great an effect.

As a substitute to screens at bed time it is also far superior for gently taking your body and brain into a state ready for sleep.

Whether it’s fiction or non fiction, the benefits to well-being, knowledge, empathy, wisdom, cognitive function etc. are tremendous and as we enter another period of tighter restrictions, what better time to allot a portion of each day (at least 30 minutes?) to reading!?

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