blogs Wed, 16 Apr 2014 00:00:00 +0000 en hourly 1 PBs, Training & Taking On The London Marathon Mon, 14 Apr 2014 00:00:00 +0000 Sweaty Betty Each year, when a sporting event as famous as the London Marathon comes around, the Sweaty Betty team are the first to put their name in the ballot; eager to get their running shoes on the start line and try to smash their personal bests.

For the 2014 Marathon, it was Clare Fraser - Assistant Manager at Sweaty Betty Walton, whose training and fitness achievements particularly caught our eye. Just 24 hours after the London Marathon, we caught up with Clare to look back at her marathon training, and find out what time she achieved on race day.

Congratulations on completing the 2014 London Marathon! How many times have you run the full 26.2 miles?
Clare: Yesterday was my fourth full marathon, and my first full distance of the year. Earlier in 2014, I ran the Dorney pace race and Surrey half marathon in Guildford. Last year, I completed the London Marathon in April, followed by the full-distance Florence event in November.

SB: So you are quite the seasoned runner then! What is your marathon personal best, and what was your time yesterday?
Clare: Before yesterday, my London PB was 3:36:25. I managed to cross the finish line more than six minutes faster during yesterday's marathon, finishing with a time of 30:30:35 - just 33 seconds slower than my overall marathon PB of 3:30:12, which I achieved in Edinburgh. I have now completed three marathons in just over 3 hours and 30 minutes - including my Florence time of 3:30:36.

SB: Take us through your marathon training schedule...
Clare: My training for yesterday's marathon began in January. During an ordinary week, I usually run around 25 miles, so for the first 8 weeks of my training, I increased my mileage to 35 per week. For weeks 9 and 10, I upped this to 45 miles, and then increased to 50+ miles for the two weeks after that, before easing into the taper (the reduction of exercise when race day draws near). During the four weeks before the taper, I completed three long distance runs of 18 miles, 20 miles and then a duration run of my intended time - 3 hours and 30 minutes, which took me to just under 25 miles.

My marathon training schedule follows the same schedule each week; lower mileage speed runs at the beginning of the week and 8-10 mile sessions on Thursdays and Fridays, then I tackle the long distances at the weekend. Even when not in training, I always run 5 days a week - and I love it!

SB: Do you do any other workouts aside from running?
Clare: I teach Tababta and Bootcamp classes five times a week, during which I spend half the time doing the class full-out, and half the time correcting posture and explaining the workouts and benefits. I also swim on my rest days, and will go cycling during the taper. I focus on runs during pre-marathon training, but now that London is over, I have switched my focus to cycling in preparation for the Windsor Triathlon on 15th June.

SB: When did you first become interested in running?
Clare: As a teenager, I was part of the Windsor, Slough and Eton run club, but I gave it up when I was 17. I got back into running about 10 years ago, beginning with a couple of triathlons before running my first half marathon in 2008, in Windsor. I have increased my competitions over the last two years to longer endurance events such as marathons.

SB: You've already mentioned the Windsor Triathlon, but what's next on your 2014 fitness schedule?
Clare: I'm currently training for a half Ironman competition, and I'm planning to run the Windsor half marathon and the full Bournemouth Marathon later in the year.

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The BODY BY SIMONE Workout Fri, 11 Apr 2014 00:00:00 +0000 Sweaty Betty Ever wondered how celebrity trainers get such toned physiques? US Ambassador Simone De La Rue shares some moves from her exclusive full-body workout with Sweaty Betty, along with explanations on what muscles you're working, how to achieve the best results, and even Mummy Modifications. 

For more details on Simone's new book, plus two of her exclusive cleanse recipes, click here.

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'HIIT It Up' with top NYC instructor Liz Barnet Mon, 07 Apr 2014 00:00:00 +0000 Sweaty Betty High Intensity Interval Training is the hottest fitness trend of the moment, and will be arriving in Sweaty Betty Soho on 12th April in an exclusive 'HIIT It Up' class taught by one of NYC's top instructors, Liz Barnet. A Fitness & Food Coach who teaches in popular boutique studios SLT & Uplift, Liz is passionate about a wide range of workouts from Pilates and yoga to weight training and corrective exercise. 

Sweaty Betty caught up with Liz to find out more about her workout routine plus what makes her 'HIIT It Up' class extra-effective at sculpting the physique.

Talk us through your weekly workout routine...

"I try to vary my routine from week to week, to keep both my mind and body interested. My workout schedule is made up of one or two HIIT workouts and a weekly cycling class at Flywheel. Each week, I will also do 1-2 classes at SLT, which is basically an extreme version of Reformer Pilates, plus a hot Vinyasa yoga class. With so many studios to try in New York, I also try to check out at least one fitness studio per week that I've never tried before. At the weekends, I will often go for a long run along the East or Hudson River. I'm running several half marathons over the next few months to raise money for colon cancer, so now the weather is warming up, it's time to get training! 

On top of this, I also teach 4 classes a week at Uplift Studios, plus private client sessions. Even though I spend parts of each class adjusting clients' technique rather than taking part myself, it is still a killer workout! On Tuesday nights, I teach 3 classes in a row."

You are teaching the 'HIIT It Up' class on 12th April, but what makes your HIIT workout unique?

"HIIT is a hot trend in the fitness industry these days and for good reason - it's time efficient, effective for several different goals, and works up a good sweat! This HIIT class is different for two reasons: I designed it for the participant to be able to complete without any equipment at all, so it's appropriate for home or travel. Second, the class incorporates 3 distinct strength-focused sections, plus two Tabata intervals, plus core work to finish. This ensures the body is working in all planes of motions and doesn't overuse one set of muscles, which enhances results and keeps your body safe and functioning optimally.

HIIT training has been proven to not only enhance cardiovascular capacity, but lead to gains in strength, power, and agility. I love adding in a HIIT treadmill session at the beginning of my workouts to really torch calories and work up a good sweat."

Is the class suitable for those new to this form of training?

"Absolutely, this class is suitable for both beginners and seasoned veterans. I offer modifications to make exercises more doable, as well as offering ways to increase the intensity for the ultra-fit."

Specifically what exercises are included in the 'HIIT It Up' class?

"In this 40-minute class, I've included many tried-and-tested exercises like squats, lunges, push-ups, and planks but always with a twist (sometimes literally!) There's lots of moving in multiple directions to hit all muscle groups, adding holds and pulses to really feel the burn, plus plyometric variations of your favorite exercises."


Designed to sculpt and tone the physique, this inspirational instructor will be teaching her high-energy HIIT class in our Soho, NY boutique on Saturday 12th April from 9:30am. To book your place, call (646) 386-7003.

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20% Off To Marathon Runners Fri, 04 Apr 2014 00:00:00 +0000 Sweaty Betty
And that's not all- as an extra prize for crossing the finish line, Sweaty Betty will be offering all the dedicated runners of any 2014 marathon an exclusive 20% off.

Exclusive 20% Off... Runners of any marathon in 2014 will receive an exclusive 20% discount on all our beautiful lines of activewear - simply come into one of our boutiques and show us your marathon medal. More of an online shopper? Email a photo of you and your medal to Customer Care, and we'll send you a 20% discount code to use on our website. This offer is available on all Sweaty Betty workout wear from 6th - 20th April 2014.

But before the discount, comes the race! Here's a little marathon motivation...

- British runner Paula Radcliffe achieved the fastest female time of any full-distance marathon in 2003, crossing the finish line of the London Marathon at 2:15:25.

- From the beginning of their marathon training to the end of the race, the average runner will run around 880 miles, which is roughly the distance from Lands End to John O'Groats. As the largest fundraising event in the world, the London Marathon has raised over £500 million for charity since its first event in 1981.

- The Boston Marathon is the world's oldest annual marathon, running since 1897.
In 2012, former professional footballer Lloyd Scott completed the London Marathon wearing a diving suit weighing 59 kg. It took him a total of 6 days, achieving the world record for the slowest marathon time, and he raised more than £100,000 for charity.

- The fastest ever recorded marathon time is 2:03:23, achieved by Kenyan athlete Wilson Kipsang during the 2013 Berlin Marathon. 

It's a well-known fact that runners need to stay hydrated, but how much is enough?

Research has shown that marathon runners lose between 2% and 8% of their body weight during the race, due to dehydration. A 2% loss may sound insignificant, but this small loss can cause up to a 20% drop in performance. Or put another way, that 2% can mean the difference between beating your PB...and not.

Stay well hydrated prior to the race by drinking at least 2 litres of water per day; more if training in warm conditions. On race day, however, it is equally as important not to over-hydrate as this has been shown to cause bloating and nausea, which will impair your run. A loose guide to how much you should drink is to assess approximately how many calories you burn during the 26.2 mile run, and increase your water intake by 1 litre for every 1,000 calories burned. 

Water is the ideal choice to keep you hydrated for the first hour of your run. After 60 minutes of running, however, experts suggest switching to certain sports drinks containing sugar or maltodextrin (slow-release carb) to help speed recovery and provide a boost in energy, thereby reducing your race time.  
Good luck!
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The BODY BY SIMONE Full-Body Makeover Thu, 03 Apr 2014 00:00:00 +0000 Sweaty Betty Designed by celebrity trainer and Sweaty Betty US Ambassador, Simone De La Rue, this innovative fusion workout combines strength training and Pilates with cardio exercises and dance moves. Here, Sweaty Betty goes behind the scenes to find out more about Simone's new book, complete with full-body workout and 7-day cleanse.

In her new book, BODY BY SIMONE: The 8-Week Total Body Makeover Plan, celebrity trainer and Sweaty Betty US Ambassador, Simone De La Rue shares her unique total-body workout - a fusion of Pilates, barre method, strength training, and cardio dance moves. Her 8-week challenge includes fast-paced, fun workouts that will tone your arms, abs, glutes and thighs, plus a 7-day cleanse menu to kick-start your full body transformation. Get started now to find out what has actress Naomi Watts raving: “You get results…I cannot get enough!”

Simone will be signing copies of her new book in the Sweaty Betty Greenwich boutique on Friday 4th April between 10am-12pm. Can't make it on Friday? Stop by our Soho store on Saturday 5th April to get your signed copy between 10am-12pm.

Below, Simone gives us a sneak peek at two of her amazing cleanse recipes from the book. 

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Sweaty Betty Meets Top Fashion Stylist, Sam Ranger Thu, 03 Apr 2014 00:00:00 +0000 Sweaty Betty Famed for being the in-house stylist at Henry Holland (and a close personal friend of the designer too), Sam Ranger is the creative mind behind some of Fashion Week's most iconic catwalk looks. This season, the eclectic stylist turned her fashionable hand to sport, styling up our SS14 collections to create the dynamic lookbook images you see below.

We caught up with Sam in between shoots, to find out what she's looking forward to in 2014, her style inspiration and how she stays fit and healthy during Fashion Week.
SB: Looking back at your hugely successful fashion career, what achievement are you most proud of?
: I have been incredibly lucky over the years, working with some of the most talented teams and beautiful girls in the business, but I think my work as Fashion Director of EXIT magazine is up there on my list of achievements. Oh, and putting Aggy (Deyn) in a pair of tartan antlers and a tartan eyepatch for an A/W House of Holland show!
SB: What are you most looking forward to in 2014?
SR: Lots of shoots, trips abroad and taking up Pilates. 
SB: What was your inspiration for the SS14 Sweaty Betty photoshoot?
SR: For the SS14 shoot, I loved the design nod to sailing and boating, and how versatile the pieces were; they could so easily be made into a RTW look, as well as being highly functional for working out. Effortless style reminiscent of Caroline Bassett Kennedy and Katherine Hepburn was so strong throughout the collection.

SB: What is your favourite Sweaty Betty range? 
SR: I'm really torn as I love it all, especially the luxurious softness of the yoga pieces and the bright colours and graphic prints of the workout wear. 

SB: Of all the Sweaty Betty outfits that you have styled, which is your favourite and why? 
SR: I think my favourite has to be the one below with the pulled-down Panther Tri Wetsuit. The model, Portia reminded me of Mario Testino pictures and the women I wanted to be when I grew up.

SB: Talk me through your weekly fitness regime. 
SR: I am really into walking; I will walk for hours, given the opportunity, although this had led me to ending up in some very strange places! 2014 is the year I take up Pilates too. 

SB: How do you stay healthy during hectic times such as Fashion Week? 
SR: Fashion Weeks are always a bit of a blur as you are running from show to show, often without a chance to stop and think. I always try to keep myself hydrated and get something healthy to eat rather than terrible snacking. As for keeping fit, I just let my heels do the calf-muscle workout!

SB: How would you describe your fashion-fitness style? 
SR: I imagine it to be Run DMC meets Olivia Newton John - I hope I'm at least part way there! 
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They Can Do It All: Sweaty Betty's Most Inspirational Mothers Thu, 27 Mar 2014 00:00:00 +0000 Sweaty Betty The saying that some women can simply 'do it all' is never more true than when applied to the Sweaty Betty ambassadors. Not only are these three women inspirational in fitness, but each of them is also a fantastic mother. With the UK's Mothers Day just around the corner (30th March) and the US celebration coming up on 11th May, we checked in with the ambassadors to find out how they combine motherhood with sport.

Chepstow Road Ambassador

As well as being an Advanced Personal Trainer, Yoga and Pilates instructor and Nutrition Advisor, our inspirational Chepstow Road ambassador Rachel is also a keen cyclist, so it was only natural for her son to develop a similar affiliation for the sport. Deciding that cycling would be a great mother-and-son activity, Rachel removed the training wheels of six-year-old Xavi's bike, and encouraged him to pedal on two wheels. Within a day, he was so excited to be cycling on his own, and has since built up to join his super fit mum on regular evening bike rides. When not out cycling, Rachel and her son spend time together practicing yoga and transcendental meditation for children. Xavi is also interested in taking up his mother's favourite workout of kickboxing (which she follows with 90 minutes of Kundalini Yoga), so the duo have recently begun going running and training on their at-home boxing bag together. Rachel is currently gearing up to introduce Xavi to inline skating this summer.

Harrods Ambassador

Personal Trainer, spin instructor and ultra-marathon runner Annie has a passion for dance, athletics and netball, and qualifications in Sports Psychology, Anatomy & Physiology, Nutrition & Weight Management, and many more. This incredible athlete has had to cope with a number of setbacks with regard to her son's health, which inspired her to become a Charity Ambassador for Great Ormond Street Hospital. The mother to two boys aged eight and thirteen, Annie has the challenge of finding sports that her sons can agree on. Thankfully, both have inherited their mother's love of being active, and enjoy playing cricket, going swimming and regularly join Annie for Sunday morning training runs. While their mother is often competing in full and half marathons, each year both of Annie's boys take part in the 5K 'Race For The Kids' run in London's Battersea Park. 

St Albans Ambassador

Sweaty Betty Ambassador, Triathlete, Entrepreneur and Mother – these are the four sides of Victoria that she juggles on a daily basis. Only three years ago, her biggest sporting achievement was completing a 10km run and she was a stay-at-home Mum; it was her love of cycling and desire to be her own boss that prompted her to found Beatbike Studios, an indoor and outdoor bike fitness company based in St Albans. Victoria has passed on her love of fitness to her children, regularly going out cycling with her son, and racking up lengths in the pool alongside her county swimmer daughter. Just last year, while Victoria adhered to a strict training schedule ahead of the gruelling 2013 London Triathlon, she was simultaneously helping her children prepare for their first SuperTri Children's, Youth & Junior Open Water Triathlon.

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Diary Of A Workout Wardrobe #6: Wah Chen Thu, 20 Mar 2014 00:00:00 +0000 Sweaty Betty Ming and Wah Chen are identical twin sisters and Sweaty Betty Ambassadors Abroad. While Ming lives in Hong Kong and Wah resides in Los Angeles, the twins are both avid runners and co-authors of children's books.

We've already seen one half of this fitness-loving duo share her Diary of A Workout Wardrobe; now it's her twin sister Wah's turn. LA-based Wah has run a total of 18 marathons, and deems her personal best as her completion of the Oxfam Maclehose race, running up and over 10 mountain ranges in Hong Kong in under 24 hours.

Day: Saturday & Sunday
Workout: Beach walks and surfing
Where: Pajaro Dunes in Northern California
This weekend, my husband, three children and I headed up the coast to Pajaro Dunes; a quiet stretch of sandy beach where we regularly meet with friends. Our days involved walks along the beach, checking out the surf and searching for hermit crabs. My Sprint Start Run Hoodie and Shakedown Shorts were the perfect casual ensemble for a weekend of rest and relaxation by the Pacific Ocean.  

Day: Monday
Workout: Cardio Training
Where: Drive Cardio, Santa Monica
This afternoon, I made my way to a private gym called Drive Cardio in Santa Monica, where I did my usual routine of cardio followed by deep stretches. My outfit for this session was the Meditation Capris and Niyama Vest.

Day: Tuesday
Workout: Spinning
Where: Soul Cycle, Los Angeles
I love going spinning, so today I made time to attend my favourite spin class at Soul Cycle in Brentwood, Los Angeles. I paired my black Power Run Shorts with two Athlete Vests - one bright green, layered beneath one with a cool Admiralty print.

Day: Wednesday
Workout: Sprints & Weights
Where: Burn60, Brentwood, Los Angeles
Every weekday at 5am, I begin my day with an iced latte and head to Burn60 - my favourite gym in Brentwood, Los Angeles. Today's session is a mix of sprints on the treadmill and weight training, wearing my Marathon Run ShortsElevate Tee and Chaines Leg Warmers. I also threw on my All Weather Protector Jacket for an extra layer, to and from the gym.

Day: Thursday
Workout: Swimming
Where: Royal Palm Resort & Spa, Phoenix
I arrived in Phoenix, Arizona this morning for a short getaway, so the first chance I got, I pulled on my new Sail Away Swimsuit and swam some laps in the pool at the Royal Palm Resort & Spa. The swimsuit has a cool design, and is flattering and supportive too. For the evening, I dressed up in comfort with the Palazzo Jumpsuit.
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Marathon Tips From Pros In-The-Know Wed, 19 Mar 2014 00:00:00 +0000 Sweaty Betty Each year, more than 36,000 people take to one of three start lines of the world-renowned London Marathon, preparing to run the 26.2 miles along the River Thames and via some of the city's most historic landmarks. With places gained via a ballot, the lucky entrants to the 34th annual event will currently be in training, hoping to beat their personal bests on race day - Sunday 14th April. 

To help you reach the finish post in the best shape possible, we've enlisted a few of our most experienced ambassadors to give us some insight into their marathon training schedules, and tell us their top tips for marathon runners. 

Soho Ambassador

"Throughout my marathon career, I have completed a total of 14 marathons in cities such as London, Vienna, Amsterdam, Paris and Budapest. As I began running marathons before I became a fitness professional, I had to ensure my training was varied; from 10k treadmill runs to dance class and half-marathon races, with Pilates and body balance to take care of core strength. I was always mindful that if I trained as much as the running magazines suggest, that it might take the fun out of the whole marathon experience, so I found a schedule that worked for me; keeping myself active with a diverse range of workouts. Even now, I always reduce my cardio and high-impact training the week before the race, focusing only on dance and short 5K runs instead. I also begin to increase my carb intake, particularly the night before - a tip I learned during the Budapest marathon: eat a large, carb-laden meal with protein and vegetables for dinner, and then a smaller breakfast of oats on marathon morning. I have been preparing this way ever since."

When running a marathon, don't forget..."to enjoy it! Make eye contact with the supporters lining the streets. Their cheers and smiles are a universal language!"

Harrods Ambassador

"Throughout my career, I have run a total of 11 marathons, 17 half-marathons and 3 ultra-marathons, with a best time of 3 hours and 37 minutes, achieved at the Edinburgh Marathon. I usually begin my training around 4 months before the event, fitting in my training around my day job. My average weekly mileage begins at 42 miles per week, increasing gradually by 10 miles per month. When training for a full 26.2 mile marathon, my runs will total 70-72 miles per week, and will be mixed in with a variety of full body conditioning, yoga stretches and speed work/intervals on treadmills, hills, and running up and down steps. I also ensure that my diet is good; increasing my carb intake a couple of weeks before the marathon. One month before the event, I do my maximum mileage, then decrease it to a low mileage two weeks before. The three days before the marathon are no-run days, and the night beforehand, I focus on staying calm, resting and hydrating. On marathon morning, I always make sure I am well-hydrated and have a good carb-laden breakfast as nerves can be draining."

When running a marathon, don't forget to..."prepare early to avoid over-training, vary your workouts, and practice with any drinks or gels ahead of the marathon. Pack your race-day bag ahead of time to avoid race-morning worry about forgetting something essential. Don't put pressure on yourself to achieve a fast time in your first race - just finishing the marathon and enjoying the experience are excellent goals for a first-timer."

Muswell Hill Ambassador

"My most enjoyable races to date were both in 2011: the London Parks Marathon, during which the weather was fantastic and I ran effortlessly, even if I do say so myself! That same year, I ran my other favourite; the New York Marathon. For me, it has never been about my time - it was about completing the course. As a yoga, Pilates, aerobics and Body Pump instructor, my forte does not naturally lie with running, but once I got into training it became very meditative and calming. In the months leading up to the marathon, I focused on increasing my distance from a 10K to the full 26.2 miles. If my experience has taught me anything, it would be to wear the right gear (and train with it before race day), and practice mindfulness meditation - it helps so much. And make sure you book in for a massage the day after the race!"

When running a marathon, don't forget to..."breathe properly, pace yourself and have fun."

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The Yoga Retreat Blogger Competition Tue, 18 Mar 2014 00:00:00 +0000 Sweaty Betty Sweaty Betty recently enlisted bloggers to take part in a creative competition to celebrate the launch of the Yoga Retreat collection – this line is brand new to Sweaty Betty and is perfect for before, during and after yoga practice. The participating bloggers received imagery of the new Yoga Retreat collection and were set the challenge of designing a creative Pinterest board that captured the essence of our elegant new line.  

Each blogger demonstrated a creative approach to the task and their Pinterest boards contained some beautiful imagery, but there could only be one winner and that was Steph of the Influence Blog. Putting together an inspiring collection of images, Steph showcased the fashion innovation of the Yoga Retreat range mixed with the relaxed ethos of a yoga holiday. Steph will be the receiver of a capsule collection from the Yoga Retreat range.  

Steph’s blog and moodboard can be found here.

If you are a blogger and want to work with Sweaty Betty, please email
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