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Staying Fit Through Freshers Week

Posted on September 16, 2015 by BBWarehouse There have been 0 comments

Freshers week is here, and with it, the promise of meeting new people, making new friends, and spending the whole week in an alcohol fuelled blur of incredible dorm parties, and club nights. However, if you’re reading this, you probably care a lot about your body too. You want to have fun, but you don’t want to lose the abs you worked and dieted months to get.

Exercise Makes You Smarter

Aside from just looking better, there are a bunch of reasons why you should try to stay fit through freshers week. For example, the are numerous studies that show a definite link between physical fitness and mental performance (Source: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/06/140619095922.htm). Regular exercise, keeps both your body and mind fit and will stand you in good stead for when classes start.

Exercise Makes You More Confident

Fitness is also linked to confidence. We all know someone who’s so shy it’s hard for them to make friends and socialise – yet exercise has been proven to boost confidence, unsurprisingly boost body image, and generally make you happier in yourself. Keeping up with your workout routine and not going too over the top with bad foods over freshers week makes a lot of sense if you want to make the best of it.

Exercise Makes You Happier

When you workout, your body releases endorphins. Endorphins are chemicals that interact with receptors in the brains that control the way you feel. Endorphins act like a drug on the brain to increase feelings of happiness and positivity. This is where the phrase "runners high" comes from, and why you feel so amazing after a hard leg session!Freshers week training

Regularly hitting the gym has been shown to:

  • Lower stress
  • Reduce anxiety depression
  • Improve body image and self esteem
  • Enhance restful sleep - and all the benefits that come with that!


Confidence is Linked to Success at Home & Work

Whilst your career may not be immediately what you’re thinking of now, you didn’t just choose to go to Uni for the heck of it. You probably chose to go because in the long term, you feel it’ll help you get a better job, earn more, and rise up the career ladder. In terms of becoming more successful, one of the more interesting recent findings has been to show that confidence, not necessarily talent is more important. If exercise builds confidence, working out could be key to your career goals (Source: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/9474973/Key-to-career-success-is-confidence-not-talent.html).

What Potential Issues Come Up During Freshers Week?

What issues come up during Freshers Week that could impact your workout regime?

  • Alcohol

Getting drunk with friends can be really fun. It’s a social lubricant – you say and do things, you might not otherwise has done sober. This can be very helpful, it may give you the confidence to start a new conversation, or “loosen up” with a group of new people you’ve just met, or talk to that girl you really liked from class. On the other hand, we can all remember doing something stupid when we were wasted.

Alcohol also have a lot of negative impacts on your body and training – part of the reason those who drink too much gain weight, isn’t just because of the empty calories from beer, vodka etc… but because alcohol changes your hormonal profile. It reduces testosterone, that hormone men spend thousands to keep high, and increases estrogen. This means you’ll find it harder to build muscle, and easier to build fat, the more you drink.

Alcohol is the opposite of a muscle builder – it’s a muscle losing, fat gaining supplement.

So generally our advice would be, have fun, enjoy your nights out, but if you’re going to drink heavily don’t do it every day. See alcohol as something to “cheat” on once in awhile and try to separate every night you go out, with a night you take it a littler easier on drinking even if that just means drinking less. There’s no way around it – alcohol does impact gains and your hormonal profile, which is essential to how your body looks, performs and recovers, so the only route to keeping in shape is to try your best to either have alcohol “cheat nights”, or limit its use.

  • Bad Food Choices & How to Make Them Great!

There are an abundance of take aways around every campus. You can’t spit and not hit a kebab shop. However, it is possible to get a pretty healthy meal here.

Junk Food

Kebab Shops – ask for a grilled chicken kebab, with lots of a salad, and no sauce. The sauce is packed with carbs and fat, but chicken is chicken, and if it’s lean and grilled, it’s packed with protein.

Subway – more and more springing up in every city, and on every campus. Here, just order one of the lean meat sandwiches with lots of salad and no sauce. You could even order it as a salad with no bread, if you’re extra keen and / or cutting.

Nandos – Nandos is generally easy to order a great meal from. Try the chicken breast, or chicken thighs with whatever your favourite spice, and for the 2 sides, the “machos peas” and corn on the cob. There you have 2 of your 5 a day vegetables, and a hefty portion of protein!

Why lots of salad?

Because aside from protein, your body NEEDS healthy fresh vegetables and fruit to stay healthy. You can tell the difference between someone who eats a lot of vegetables and someone who doesn’t – they just look better! This isn’t just us saying it either, it’s science - http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/health/news/9128696/Eating-fruit-and-veg-boosts-attractiveness.html

  • Drugs

You’ll be offered lots of drugs or at least have them available, throughout freshers week. Whilst some like marijuana are relatively low risk and there are pictures of Arnold smoking a joint after winning the Olympia, we advise you stay away.

If that sounds kill-joy, we’re sorry, but even if you could find positive scientific data for how other drugs are “low risk”, then you still cannot guarantee what you’re getting. The fact is you’re buying an illegal substance from a drug dealer, who doesn't care about your health, or about the purity of what he’s selling. He just cares that he gets the most money from you. It could be rat poison, and very often has been when street drugs have been tested in the past. Your money is going to a bad person, for something you have no idea on the contents of, and this bad person will use your money for bad things.

Crime in student areas is rife – the number of break ins when I was a student was huge. My friends had their houses robbed and laptops taken, iPods taken, and anything else that wasn't pinned down, and could be stolen taken, and there’s a clear link between drugs and crime. Anyone who buys Ecstasy, Speed etc… is contributing sadly, to the crime they suffer from on a daily basis. Whilst marijuana is generally considered a lower-risk drug, with similar consequences to tobacco, the other drugs aren't. You simply don’t know what you’re taking, and it’s guaranteed the money is going ultimately to bad people who do bad things.

  • Sleep

Try to get enough sleep through freshers week. Sleep is when you’re body recovers and also when growth hormone output is at its highest. Growth hormone output is linked to a reduction in body fat, improved joint health and muscularity.

Just go to Sleep

You want your growth hormone to naturally be high, so that then your body can recovery and growth from each of those hard training sessions you put yourself through. A lack of sleep over time, will contribute to sore joints, injuries, and poor results.

Try to get a solid, uninterrupted 8 hours of sleep per night for optimal results.

  • Time to Train

With so much going on during Freshers Week, it can be hard to find the time to train, so here are 2 simple workouts that can be done in 30 minutes or less just twice a week to cover your entire body.

Monday –

  • Warm-Up – 10 minutes on the exercise bike, jogging, heavy bag work or skipping at a light pace.
  • Squats – 3 sets of 12 reps
  • Shoulder Presses – 3 sets of 12 reps
  • Pull-Downs or Pull-Ups – 3 sets of 12 reps
  • Bicep Curls – 3 sets of 8 reps
  • Abdominal Work – leg raises, sit-ups, planks… your choice
  • Stretch Off



  • Warm-Up – 10 minutes on the exercise bike, jogging, heavy bag work or skipping at a light pace.
  • Deadlifts – 3 sets of 8 reps
  • Bench Presses – 3 sets of 12 reps
  • Barbell Rows – 3 sets of 12 reps
  • Tricep Push-Downs – 3 sets of 8 reps
  • Abdominal Work – leg raises, sit-ups, planks… your choice
  • Stretch Off

If you look at the above workouts closely you’ll see a theme:

  • Warm Up
  • A whole body strength exercise to maximise natural hormonal output and condition
  • A compound pushing exercise
  • A compound pulling exercise
  • An isolation exercise to fill out a t-shirt
  • Core work
  • Stretching

Warm ups are important to reduce injury. If you’re warm, you’ll perform better and you’re less likely to get injured. Whole body exercises are linked to greater release of natural testosterone and natural growth hormone that help you get the best from your workout, because your body has the most productive hormonal response. In other words, your muscle grow better if there’s fertiliser for the soil – and these hormones are fertiliser.

In terms of pushing and pulling, you want to cover the most ground possible in the least time. By cutting your body into “motions” that cover a lot of muscle, this is achieved. A good pushing exercise like bench or shoulder press covers your shoulders, triceps, core stability, forearms and more. A good pulling exercise covers your back (the 2nd biggest muscle group in the body after legs), biceps, forearms, core and shoulders.

Gym workout Image by OlegDoroshin


Everything is hit – and the above workouts can be done in 30 minutes. To add in cardio, simply gradually reduce the rest periods between sets.

The Student Diet

In America they call it the Freshman 15. Typically during freshman year most Americans will gain 15 pounds due to the lifestyle. The student lifestyle can leave you feeling drained, lethargic, down, unhappy and stressed. This combination can not only impact your appearance but can cause some serious health risks. New research has found stress and the elevated levels of cortisol cause many illnesses and can lead to depression. Instead of going on about the negatives, we are providing you with a solution.

  1. Accept your diet won’t be perfect

This is one of the most important steps. Once you accept that you cannot have the perfect diet of chicken and broccoli every day, that’s the day your life improves. The new uprising of flexible dieting is a great way to live. Treat your daily calories like a budget. You have a certain budget to spend daily. if you spend the budget, then your left in the same situation as before (no net gain or loss in money). If you go over your budget you will get into debt (gain fat) or if you come in below budget you will save money (lose fat). Firstly, understand that if you do want a snickers for lunch (love a good snickers), you simply deduct the calories from your daily allotment. This means maybe less food for your pre-bed snack to compromise. It’s as simple as that but you need to accept that’s how the body works, the body does not work on “clean” or “dirty” foods.

  1. Substitute your favourite foods for healthy alternatives

Thank god for technology and innovation. This has enabled us to turn out favourites foods and cakes into healthier alternatives. You don’t have to buy White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake to have the taste, you can simply buy a whey protein powder in White Chocolate Raspberry flavour, add to some protein pancake mix and there you have some White Chocolate Raspberry protein pancakes! I once went through my food weaknesses, I listed all my favourite foods I like to binge on and then found alternatives that were 1. healthy in terms of macro-nutrients 2. cheap 3. quality. Below are some ideas for you, a list of some popular “unhealthy” foods which students love.

  1. Pancakes

I love pancakes. If you told me a few years ago I could have pancakes for breakfast everyday and still got into competition shape, I would have told you that you’re insane. Thank god for new formulations and advancements in the sports nutrition industry. Our premium protein pancakes have 22g of protein and 19g of carbs per serving. A serving gives you two nicely sized pancakes. I would also add a scoop of whey protein concentrate for an extra 20g of protein and to add flavour. My favourite combo is the s’mores flavour whey protein concentrate mixed with pancakes in original flavour. Drizzle some Walden farms zero calorie pancake syrup on top and you now have a meal that’s roughly 42g protein, 20g carbs, 2-3g fat. Incredible! Compare that to your standard pancake which is high in carbs and low in protein. This should definitely be in your cupboard ready for the mornings and dealing with student life!

  1. Chocolate bars

If there is anything  in the world I would chose to eat for the rest of my life, it would be chocolate bars. I love Snickers, Mars and my all time favourites Reese's. Most chocolate bars will be roughly 250-400 calories with hardly any protein and high in fat. Quest bars was my go to replacement for a while until I realise that 1. They are not filling 2. made from chemically made fibre 3. expensive. My alternative is protein flapjacks. 18g of protein, 35g of carbs per flapjack but the carbs are from oats and the protein is just as high as quest bars. They are also double the thickness and far more filling. It’s definitely handy to have a box of 24 in your room for times when you’re dying for some food! (24 bars only £15!).

  1. Mousse/Dessert

If you have a sweet tooth I’m sure you love your desserts, chocolate based yoghurt and all other kinds of goodies. Chocolate mousse mixed with ice cream and chocolate sauce can pack some seriously calories. Luckily for you, there is a cheap and awesome replacement for you, protein mousse! 33g of protein, 9g of carbs and less than 2g of fat per serving. You can even add walden farms zero calorie chocolate sauce and mix it with some zero fat Greek yoghurt to boost the meal and give it more thickness. This is definitely something you should have handy for your pre-bed snack while watching netflix and random films for hours on end.

Premium Protein Mousse


Your diet is going to suffer whilst at university, especially over freshers. The majority of the damage is done the morning and day after a heavy night when you eat anything and everything you can get your hands on. If you had cheap and affordable alternatives like our protein pancakes, mousse and flapjacks you can redeem yourself over freshers and keep those gains. Not only are they cheap but they are the best quality products on the market, no marketing gimmicks, no fancy packaging, no huge celebrity endorsements (that rap up prices). We are simply being transparent with everything, cutting out the standard industry nonsense and offering you the greatest products possible. Our student bundle offers are not ones to miss, for only a cost of a fraction of a night out, you can get at least a month's worth of supplements to help support you through freshers and beyond. Make sure you're keeping your appearance sharp, your physique on point and also enjoying the nights out. Nothing worse than falling into the downfall of drinking yourself to depression whilst also gaining fat and losing all confidence.

Be flexible, make it easy to eat healthy, use your money wisely. Trust us, once freshers is over and you've been getting over your hangovers on protein pancakes, flapjacks and mousse looking the same as you did before starting uni your flatmates will envy how you've stayed so trim.

Don’t miss out on the offer, it’s a one off special offer and make sure to check out our entire range.

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