23 November 2020

My Protein Protein-Packed Product Review

If I can take something positive out of 2020, it's that as a family we have made changes to look after ourselves a lot more. We haven't made massive changes but the little ones we have, they've made a massive difference. 

Our family consists of myself and my wife Simone, my just turned 15-year-old son and 5-year-old daughter. 

I have always been an on and off the gym type of person. One month I'm all for it but then the next month I just can not be bothered at all. I think a lot of this is down to my diet and energy levels to be honest - when I'm at the gym I love it but it's that actually getting to the gym I struggle with.
And then there are the aches and pains I suffer from the few days after I actually get to the gym - something I put down to me being the ripe old age of 38, oh this and the fact that my diet is really poor, I know I definitely needed to make some changes and get some more goodness into my system.

My son is 15 and plays rugby - he is coming to the age where the games he plays are becoming really physical so - before lockdown hit - he had been going to the gym, not only to stay fit but also to improve his physical strength.
It was such a shame when the gyms closed because he had been putting in so much effort and had really started to notice improvements. 

When the first lockdown was announced, was it back in March? It's been a long year...
The gyms closing was a real kick in the backside for both me and my son to get organised at home because we both had been going to the gym quite regularly and had a good routine in place and we really didn't want to lose all of our progress.

We had to decide what to do next - we didn't have much exercise equipment in the house and definitely have a lack of space (and cash!) to own our own things - especially when the prices of equipment - even second-hand equipment - rose by a lot, even on Facebook selling sites. 
Luckily a family member offered us a bar and some free weights and we managed to get some dumbells and resistance bands really cheap - it wasn't much but just enough for us to get some sort of workouts done.

Anyway, as I said my diet just wasn't right, especially with what I wanted to achieve, so my wife - who already uses My Protein for a few products and supplements to help her with her workouts - asked me if I wanted her to order some products to help me and my son to feel physically better in ourselves, to get us motivated and to help us recover faster post-workout, allowing us to be better set to try our best at our new home-workout routine.
And with me been furloughed I had plenty of time on my hands and - most importantly diet wise - I couldn't be tempted to eat rubbish food throughout the day...Greggs is my downfall. 

In all, I think I was on furlough for two months and myself and my son did about five workouts in the garden each week.
We made a makeshift bench from a hop-up I had in my van and we mixed the workouts up and always made sure we had our multi-vitamins and cod liver oil in the morning and we would end our workouts with a nice protein shake. 

We were quite lucky really that we had some really nice weather but those home workouts weren't a patch on the gym workouts we were used to doing - we were made up when the gyms finally reopened - and my son was over the moon when his rugby team started training again.
He was fit and feeling strong due to his "I WILL do this" lockdown attitude, which gave his confidence a massive boost. 

And I wasn't feeling too bad myself either which was a first for a long time but we both definitely wanted to up our protein intake through the day and not just have protein in our shakes or main meals. A few weeks later I had a rather nice email arrive in my inbox from no other than My Protein themselves asking if I was interested in checking out and reviewing some of the new protein bars which had just dropped and some of their other products...!

Like I said above, we have used a fair few My Protein products in the past (and present!) so having the chance to work with them on my blog is a dream come true. 

So let's get to the bit you have all been waiting for ...the products...

First up...

My Protein has combined two of their most loved treats - cookies, and brownies - into one single high protein snack.

Before I tasted these I knew they were going to be amazing...white chocolate, marshmallow, a cookie dough base, a brownie style protein dough topped with a low sugar caramel coating!...how was I not going to like these!?

All of these in a protein bar seems a tad wrong doesn't it, but let me tell you it's really so right.
The flavour, the texture both make it seem like you are treating yourself to a real "naughty" snack, 
Some protein bars I have had in the past have been a little dry and stodgy - not these though, not at all - 14G of lovely tasting protein - you're definitely on to a winner.

Actually, the only issue I had with these was that my son loved them as much as I did so they didn't last too long.

The next product was another bar - this one is the My Protein Whipped Duo Chocolate Fudge.

Even though these are my least favourite of the two that I reviewed they are still a really flavoursome packed bar.
This one has 11 grams of protein per bar and the chocolate-fudge combo is a definite winner, it has a super-soft texture which almost melts in your mouth too.

I found this bar perfect for me straight after my dinner at work when I would normally want to eat something sweet - they really helped with my sweet tooth cravings throughout the day in the work van.

It's 100% a treat without the cheat! 

The third product was something I could certainly start my day with.
For many years now breakfast has been my biggest downfall - I'm always in such a rush in the morning and end up just grabbing something from a fast-food place on the way to my first job - usually a Greggs or a McDonalds's.
I mean, yes they taste great but I would instantly regret it an hour or so later.

I have tried meal replacement shakes in the past - they were great for weight-loss but I would start to get really hungry an hour or so after one which just leads to me eat something I wasn't meant to be having - totally defeating the object of having a meal replacement diet on the go.

The My Protein Protein Pancake Mix pancakes were a dream for me - I'm a massive pancake fan and must admit I do make a great pancake (my Yorkshire puddings are famous in Bradford ;) )

Me and my son have both had these pancakes for breakfast a fair few times now and both of us are really impressed with them - the blend of high-quality protein from the milk and egg, the cookie and cream flavour is really good and the ease of simply adding milk, giving them a quick whisk and sticking them into a frying pan takes just minutes.
I mean even my lazy morning self manages to get it done. 
I like my pancakes quite thick and fluffy - with added strawberry and blueberries - and these honestly do make a great, slow-digesting, fast breakfast - perfect for my lifestyle. 

The pancakes come in nine amazing flavours too and we can not wait to try out the chocolate and cinnamon, and sugar ones - they both do sound amazing.  

And then (yes, there's more!) last but not least on the menu is something I've never tried before and have only used a couple of times - I wanted to use the full course but with the gyms closing tfor the second time I didn't manage to finish the course as I thought there wasn't much point with my lack of exercising being forced again (no furlough this time, so day time, home workouts were out of the window)
I'm not sure if I could get the best out of them doing my home workouts either really.

I wish I could tell you more about them but I just hope when things go back to normal I can get the most out of them again and can let you guys know what I thought of them properly.

The Thermo-X contain My Protein's ultimate weight-loss formula of essential vitamins and minerals.
They consist of all-natural plant extracts which all help you really focus your weight-loss goals.

For me, well I wasn't trying to lose a mega amount of weight but I was using them to give me that extra boost when training and to help with endurance.

As a family we have really enjoyed the products and the extra protein we are getting is such a bonus - especially when everything tastes so good.
We will carry on ordering our usual supplements and powders from My Protein but may now throw a few new items into the basket to try every now and again too - and knowing they always have some sort of deal on, well it's great. 

Do you use My Protein products? If so, what are your favourites? 


This post was in collaboration with My Protein, all images and opinions are my own 

20 November 2020

Don't Feel Ashamed Of Your Classic Masculinity

Recent controversies on Twitter aimed at Harry Styles and his gender-curious fashion sense have hit the headlines in recent days, and for an interesting reason. It seems as though the discourse surrounding what ‘masculinity’ actually is has become blurred. Some still hold onto it as the bloody-and-roaring ambition of the Vikings and in the hard-won, rugged, natural adventuring of our ancestors - to use a couple of intense examples.

Others say masculinity is something every man defines for himself, and they are nearer to the truth. Harry Styles may wear dresses, for instance, but he is certainly no less of a powerful figure for it, and would likely outdo many of us in the romance department thanks to his charm. That said, you can defend Harry Styles, and new forms or interpretations of masculinity taking form, and also STILL pay respect to how masculinity was and has been classically viewed in the past. In other words, you can see the late Sean Connery and Harry Styles as men worthy of respect. However, it does seem that an overcorrection has taken place, and classic masculinity, of the type you may see in classic issues of GQ, is in disrepute.

If that’s the kind of masculinity that works for you, that’s fine, too. There’s no need to feel ashamed of being wherever you are in the spectrum. In fact, for lack of trending articles popularizing that concept now - let’s consider what ‘classic’ may mean in 2020.

A Flash Of Nobility & Class

A worthwhile flash of nobility and class is worth investing in from time to time. You might find that spending time behind the wheel of an Aston Martin Vantage not only grants you access to a beautiful and highly practical car, but also that your feeling of occupying a James Bond role, and all of the cultural sharpness that emphasizes, can be a great deal of fun. Who said that classic teenage fantasies shouldn’t be answered? If you can focus on something like this, be it a rented, financed, or purchased option or experience, you’ll no doubt enjoy that flash of nobility and class you’re looking for. No matter if you find it through a track day or in a fine dining restaurant, it’s nice to feel how a little refinement can be from time to time.

A Sense Of Rugged Adventure

A sense of rugged adventure is also quite worthwhile. You can find this by traveling, or by exploring an area that you may not be familiar with. Spending time in a European town, solo-traveling, or spelunking with friends can be a great means of finding your adventuring spirit, which may have gone unused for some time. A sense of rugged adventure not only helps you feel more active and engaged but, through osmosis, you will begin to inspire your peers in the same breath.

Taking The Lead & Feeling Strong

You don’t have to feel like you’re ‘taking the lead’ to be masculine, but it can be nice to flex some of your leadership and willingness to define your terms from time to time. This might involve organizing an impromptu night with your partner, completely surprising them. It might mean taking the first step in having that difficult discussion with a friend. It could simply mean deciding not to take your excuses as gospel anymore, and going for that morning run. You’d feel infinitely better, no doubt. So - no matter how your masculinity is defined, don’t be afraid to explore it, even if it does harp back to our classic understanding of this quite powerful mode of living.

With this advice, we hope you can reconnect or re-express your classic masculinity, without shame, should you wish to.


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