Tag Archives: bethnal green

Should you drink Protein Shakes while Pregnant?

Interestingly when I researched this topic almost entirely the sites found were US based.

What does this say about our side of the water?

Either we use protein supplements less or as a much less active island the question to shake or not to shake while pregnant just doesn’t come up on UK Mum networking sites.

Anyways here is the best answer I could find.

A pregnant lady requires roughly 71 grams of protein a day more if carrying twins. This works out at about 10 grams more then usual give or take.

While I believe we should be getting our protein intake from whole foods some struggle eating meat and protein rich foods.

Some choose the supplement route, using brands such as Maxi-muscle and MyProtein. If you have taken them before pregnancy it may not occur to take a look at the labels to see if they are OK to take during pregnancy.

Often there will be a disclaimer on the label stating not recommended and that is for a good reason.

A lot of these products are combined during manufacturing with added vitamins, minerals and herbs, some that are not appropriate for pregnancy.

It is also worth noting that artificial sweeteners are also not very desirable during pregnancy

Some studies have even shown these to contain heavy metals although they were within the safe guidelines. I think it’s prudent to ask your doctor for alternatives they could recommend.

You could however make your own shake up using a low fat yogurt mixed with peanut butter or fruits. You could throw in a tsp of flexseed oil for good measure -(this is of-course providing your not on a paleo diet)

I found this site quite useful for further information on the subject.


Sally Dixey is a Crossfit London Personal Trainer in Bethnal Green


18th September – The 5’s

Getting to the end of the 5’s and the weights are getting tougher!

I can’t wait to see where this takes me, over half way through now.

Today saw me Back squatting and Bench pressing.

Working weight was 85% and the target was at least 5 reps plus some.

In between each move I inserted pull ups and double under practise, using time effectively.

Phillip has given me a few pointers with my double unders, which I am finding frustrating!

I am trying to make the double under move efficient by bouncing through my ankle and not my knees and hips. This is defiantly less taxing but as a primary school break time skipper use to bouncing through my knees and hips its hard to switch them off.

Aware that I need to add more met cons to my routine I tried out my Monday night Crossfit London WOD.

AMRAP 3 Minutes

10 Box jumps

15 Ball Slams

1 minute active rest of max pull ups (as I need to work on Push ups I did them instead)

This was a lot harder then it appeared. Ball slams and Box jumps are exhausting at the best of times but together they made a killer combo.

I did 5 rounds.


Sally Dixey is a Crossfit London Personal Trainer in Bethnal Green

One Girls thoughts on Recovery

I think I must bore some of you Crossfit junkies with all my baby and pregnancy blurb. It’s funny because when I completed the business side to my personal training certificate, my business plan actually revolved around pregnancy so I guess this was inevitable.

I will try to keep this short…….

It is my personal mission to encourage and promote healthy active pregnancies and post-natal recovery so when Snoop is sleeping or distracted, I trawl the net. On one of these occasions I came across this article. I have copied an excerpt but the basic gist is that the athlete is reflecting on her return to training, and more to the point, competing after the birth.

My recovery and return to training took 5 months – is that too long or slow?

After reading this I think I made the right decision.

Go on have a read……..

“Finding the right boundaries for postpartum training was more difficult. “I probably returned to CrossFit a little too quickly after giving birth,” Richards-Lindsay admits about her return to training two-and-a-half weeks after giving birth.

“I tried a few push-ups, squats, and plank holds the week I returned from the hospital. I decided that it felt pretty good and knew that my ultimate goal of making it to the Games was only possible if I got started right away,” Richards-Lindsay says.

Finding the Limits

Although her workouts were “scaled and modified” to her comfort level, Richards-Lindsay explains that even those light workouts may have demanded too much from her still-healing body.

“I simply underestimated how much healing really needed to take place … I had diastasis recti [during pregnancy] and it still isn’t healed to this day because I didn’t give my abdominals a chance to heal and come back together,” Richards-Lindsay says.

According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, “Diastasis recti is a separation between the left and right side of the rectus abdominus muscle, which covers the front surface of the belly area.” It is common in newborns and pregnant women, and usually heals in the months following birth.

“I needed to give my pelvis, hips, abdominals, and back some time to strengthen and adjust after something as taxing as nine months of carrying a child and 24 hours of labor,” Richards-Lindsay reflects. “I had lied to my doctor on my six week check up, saying that I hadn’t been exercising yet. Obviously if there’s a timeframe set, there’s a reason.”

Throughout her post-birth training, being a “good mommy” was always her priority. “Sometimes I just didn’t want to leave her, so if I got three workouts a week, oh well,” Richards-Lindsay (Full article)

I can totally see why she wanted to return so soon. You all know why….because as crossfitters a competitive streak is part of our nature: we want to strive to push ourselves. We are invincible!

But competition aside we need to humble ourself to the true impact and cost pregnancy has on the female body.

Hormones that have made pregnancy possible don’t just go away when the baby is born! You need the same caution to impact, movement and intensity as you did for the 9 months you were pregnant.

When I say Cost, it doesn’t mean cost forever, as I stand I am living proof give yourself time to heal and you can build yourself strong again.

After Snoop was born the motherly side of me was wrapped up in being a good Mum but the Crossfiting side to me was dying to get back in the gym. It was like having a two little voices in my head.

I guess this is a perfect point to add that officially whether natural or not you should abstain from exercise for the first 6 wks. This allows your abdominals to return to there natural position. Any attempts before this could result in permanent damage!

I had the most extreme and most invasive type of birth and fully aware of the risks I had to ignore that little voice crying out for a hectic metcon!

The most obvious starting point for me begun looking at my everyday tasks.

I found myself finding even the simple job of closing a heavy drawer a huge strain on my tummy and operation site. I realised I was stooping as I moved, and even lifted myself out of bed differently!

Pelvic floor exercises and a short walk was about my limit, as even standing around for too long (probably related to posture also) was extremely uncomfortable. I needed to be proactive and correct my stance and posture for everything if I was going to get any where! Washing up dishes became a workout, opening and closing my heavy drawers were a test of ab bracing!

Slowly I began to feel a little more ‘normal’, time for a test I think………so I joined Andrew’s Friday lunch class and although I got through it I was uncomfortable, unstable, weak. I found myself holding back because I think I knew deep down that I wasn’t really at full health. It was only 3 months since the birth. Sound like a long time to you??? I challenge you to watch a video of a c section and then come back to me and tell me it’s too long!

I wanted to do it right. And that could only happen if I took the foundations and made them solid and by that I mean work on my strength, I want to add confidence too! (I needed to feel strong again before I could let rip on a few wods)

I gave myself a few more weeks recovery during which time I discovered paleo and embarked on a 30 day challenge. You gotta eat right to train right!

I started first just messing around with some light weights – squats, dead lifts, overhead press. Then a couple of wods on holiday in Australia.

Then came the Hit List. My way of focusing my training and giving myself goals to work on. I am officially one of the geeks in the gym who records every thing religiously. And why not it saves all that faffing and guessing weights.

So far this journey is around the 9month mark……

What had I achieved……..

Pre -pregnancy squat and overhead press weights and 1 pull up!

I felt I was ready to add a few more wods into my training alongside strength.

Being careful about recording weights and training over the next two months paid off because I now have 6 pull ups, 2 ring dips and my dead lift is getting closer to my previous double body weight max.

When did I realise I was absolutely back on form?

Smashing through Karen (150 wall balls for time 6kg 9ft target) in 5 min 51!

I still have my weaknesses like everyone, but I officially can no longer use the excuse “I’m still recovering” that makes my total recovery time 11months!!

Did I take too long to get here? I don’t think so, ask yourself would you send a

thoroughbred to the Grand National when they were at risk of further injury or not on form?

I reckon your answer is no.

I wonder in hindsight how different Taylor Richard-Lindsay’s approach would have been if she knew what she knows now? Would she have driven herself so hard so soon? So what recovery took me 11months! 11 months is nothing in the grand scheme of things, I’m strong and wiser to boot and I wouldn’t change it one bit!

(I just want to remind you that I am talking here about my experience which was recovering from a c section, which is quite different and a longer process then that of a natural birth but although this is on the more extreme end of the spectrum it is important to remember the body will take around 12 months to recover fully no matter how you deliver. Before embarking on any exercise after birth you must consult your doctor or mid-wife)


Sally Dixey is a Personal Trainer at Crossfit London in Bethnal Green

12th September -FireBreathers

Wednesday 12th saw the second team trial session delivered and what a session it was.

Tom had set up a Fire-Breathers session, which is Crossfit slang for those Crossfitters out there that eat back to back wod’s up for breakfast, who work so hard that you have that burning sensation sitting on your lungs and throat -Nice.

I could sense from the build up that this was going to be an epic session.


1rm Thrusters

Set up for Grace  (you have to watch this video Miranda is awesome!)

30 Clean and Jerks for time (42/62kg) The rule is Ground to overhead, full lock out.

10 minute cap.

The faster you got through Grace the more rest you had.

Getting ready for Cindy

5 Pull ups, 10 Push ups, 15 Squats

AMRAP 20 Minutes


Before I continue I have to admit that I totally screwed Grace up and i don’t even understand why………….

Let me explain.

Grace should be Ground to Overhead right..but for some reason I went ahead and must have completed around 20 reps from a hang position! I was the only numpty in the class doing it like that, I must have been in my own world.

I had every intention of running through Grace again on Friday and then post my result but the DOMS is still pretty harsh even as I type. I defo need to work on volume if I am going to make the team.

Anyways aside from that I was quite happy with my effort.

It was the first time doing pull ups in a wod rx’ed. Tough but such a good feeling!

I had to reduce my push ups from full to knee push ups by about round 4 but I am ok with that. I just need to work on that.

My Scores.

Thruster 52.5kg

Grace 5.30 (20 reps from hang)

Cindy 9.5 rounds

Attempting a group hug was impossible!
Attempting a group hug was impossible!
Scores on the doors!
Scores on the doors!

An Epic session with some Epic team mates.


Sally Dixey is a Crossfit London Personal Trainer in Bethnal Green




Luxury Paleo Pancakes

So a while ago I posted some pancakes made with banana and almond butter.

They were awesome, best pancakes ever till I discovered this recipe……………….

2 Large eggs beaten,

Add ….

Tiny pinch of salt

A splash of maple syrup

1 Tbs Coconut flour and 3 Tbs of coconut milk

Pinch of baking soda

Splash of vanilla extract

Dust in some cinnamon to taste.

Mix all together to make a uniformed batter and then spooning into a pan using a Tbs as a measure.

Use some coconut oil to cook in.

When the bubble begin on top flip for a minute and then set aside.

I drizzle maple syrup on top to be indulgent.


I have been taking these into the gym this week and have had great reports all round.

I know they are good though when Snoop gobbles them up. So that makes a tasty treat for you and tasty baby food treat for the bubba. Sorted!


Sally Dixey is a Crossfit London Personal Trainer in Bethnal Green


21st August -Slam Ball Central

Skipping training on Sunday always makes Tuesday’s session a bit tougher as I have some catch up to do.

I wanted to fit a met con in today to make up and with a new deliver at the gym of a load of slam balls I knew it had to include them.

Slam balls – a specially designed ball that you can throw/slam into the floor. It looks a bit like a very large stress ball but filled with something a bit heavier.

Strength was first on my list to attack.

Starting the intensification phase of the 8’s wave. Have you read up on juggernaut yet?

My warm up sets looked like this….

60%, 67.5% with 3 reps in each set.

Workings sets were 8 reps 3 sets at 72.5%

And of course Repping the last set.

Next up met con time!

I haven’t used a slam ball in maybe 3 years or more.

It’s not a favourite of mine, I will do it but only when I am told to. It’s not high on my hit list. I think because I am a lady and slam balls are quite a bloke-y primal move.

Anyways it’s new kit in the gym so I am up for giving it a once over.

We did 3 rounds of

20 slam balls

20 medicine ball cleans

20 knees to elbow


I can work through a met con like this no problem just not in the best of times as although I quite like doing them I have very few knees 2 elbow meaning I have to break down the 20 into 2’s and 1’s

Another move I need to improve on!

I got the work done in 16 minutes 37.


Sally Dixey is a Crossfit London personal trainer in Bethnal Green


16th August -Loser!

I hate it when I fail at something, don’t we all I guess.

Training today with Chris I am going to start by getting down the met con,or at least my attempt.

Chris’s suggestion for today was Annie, a benchmark crossfit wod of double unders and sit ups.

50,40,30,20,10 of each move alternating.

It should take sub 10 minutes to complete, but after that fluke of a wod the other week I always suck big time at double unders.

I was prepared to give it a go.

Sucking big time doesn’t even come close.

I was a total loser and by 12 minutes and still not having completed 50.

I dashed the rope to the corner of the room and threw my toys out of the pram!

Chris did try to motivate me by telling me to bloody well get on with it but seeing him flying through while I kept whipping every inch of my legs and arms looking more like someone tangled in the jump rope rather then actually achieving any reps, was enough for one day.

At one point Chris even told me to stop being a spoilt brat, which is fair play. I need someone to be tough on me but where I don’t mind working on my weakness’s I can’t stand working through a wod with them. I feel set up for failure.

So what have I learnt from this.

I need to practice more double unders!

It wasn’t a completely failed session as I did continue the 8’s wave of my juggernaut program.

Really I should have more time between sessions but after such a hectic wk previously I only just got to training yesterday.

Yesterday was …..

Bench press and back squat.

5 sets and 8 reps each set – weight was set at 65% of my working max.

I squeezed in 5 sets of 3 pull ups and some stretching.

Today was……

Over head press and dead lift

5 sets and 8 reps each set – weight was set at 65% of my working max.

Again I got my pull ups in whoop! And some stretches.


Sally Dixey is a Crossfit London coach in Bethnal Green

More Mummy & Baby Food Ideas

Sometimes I surprise myself!

I was looking for some inspiration for my lunch today and went to my Nom Nom Paleo app.

I liked the look of the eggs in ham. I had to choose a good ham though and there was my problem!

Tesco doesn’t really cater for Paleo were cooked meats are concerned. Most of the packs contain at the very least gluten and far worse lots of food nasties.

How did I over come this??….I went all posh and bought some nice parma ham, which although is a little more expensive is exactly what it says it is.

If you don’t have the app here’s how to rustle them up.





Parma ham


Tabasco sauce

Salad leaves (I like to add a bit of rocket and watercress for flavour)


Using muffin cases, fold the parma ham and line the muffin case with it.

Add the egg to the case and Add some salt and pepper.

On a low heat cook till whites set and yolk still runny.

Juice the lime and add Tabasco to taste.

Plate up the salad and when eggs ready lay on top and spoon on the lime dressing.



My second surprise of the day was with Snoop ‘s lunch.

I usually cook him fish using Annabel Karmel’s orange fish recipe.

Here is my alternative, which Snoop gobbled up.


Cod filets




Fish stock cube (use baby stock if the baby is still under 9 months)



Lay the filets on a sheet of foil.

Dot butter and mustard on the fish (don’t over do the mustard – stick with dijon)

Using a quarter of the stock cube make up a little in a cup and pour over the fish.

Sprinkle on the parsley and grate on some cheese.

Take up the 4 corners of the foil and make a parcel.

Bake for about 12-15 minutes


I serve this with sweet potatoes or lentils.

When they gobble all your cooking up it’s the best.


Sally Dixey is a Crossfit London personal trainer in Bethnal Green.





15th August -My New Years start now………………..

I am always so relieved when the last week is over. It’s like the beginning of a new year for me and everything is measured from that date. Now it’s over for another year I can begin with writing again.

The first thing I need to share with you is the most epic healthy breakfast ever!

I can’t claim this as my own invention, I watched the Hairy Bikers and nabbed it from them.



Beats any fry up!



Rocket and watercress


Balsamic vinegar

Baby tomatoes

Salt and pepper



Make a bed of rocket and watercress while heating up a pan of water.

When the water has heated to just below boiling add the egg for 20 seconds. This cooks the whites a little and makes for an easier egg to poach.

Fry the bacon in a pan and add the tomatoes. When done lay on the bed of rocket and watercress.

Crack the egg and gently add to the water and watch it poach to perfection.

When it’s done (I like the yolk to be runny) place the egg on top of the bacon and the tomatoes.

Finally drizzle on some vinegar.


This is a good alternative to a fry up.

As well as cooking I did get in some training sessions……


I am in the fourth week of juggernaut. I am doing it over two days with Sundays reserved for a hardcore met con and some accessory work on my shoulder and ring work.

I have really noticed some awesome strength gains and found that spending less time working in the top end of a working max has meant my form has been consistent and have had next to no bad lifts!

From an injury perspective this is awesome as it makes for less injury and better recovery.

I could try and explain the Juggernaut method but I would probably get all muddled up and not explain it well. It’s quite a complex method but well worth a read. You can find the juggernaut e-book by clicking!

This will explain it much better then I could.

I have had a huge break through with my pull ups. Let me share the story so far……

So while in Australia I had my first ropy chin up since pregnancy. On my return I decided to dust off my power bar and attach it to the bathroom door. I started with that 1 ropy chin up and practise it every time I washed my hands (which made for a lot of practise)

1 chin turned into 3. Whoop

Now I had my 3 chins without a band or support it was time to start practising some strength.

3-7 reps 5 sets rest about 2 minutes between sets.(this can be followed by using support also but try to use as little support required)

The first time I did this I could only manage 3 sets with no band and used a very light red band for the remaining sets.

Next I was able to complete 4 sets with no help and on the final set Chris spotted/helped with the last rep.

A week later I didn’t need any help finishing! Whoop.

Now to turn these into pull ups. (the difference with a chin to a pull is the way you grip the bar -a chin is easier as more bicep is used)

So at home I started to practise a pull up grip every time I washed my hands!

All my hard work has paid off because yesterday I was able to complete 5 sets of 3-4 pull ups with absolutely no help!

I just need to keep working at it and make sure I continue to improve.

My next goal is toes to bar and ring dips!

Alongside the final stage of the 10’s wave (realisation phase of juggernaut, for a detailed explanation of this refer to the above link to the e-book) I fitted in a Sunday meet with Kate.

We are still making our way through the Crossfit Games wod’s.

This Sunday was the turn of the dreaded wall ball amrap.

150 6kg wall balls 9ft target

90 double unders

30 muscle ups

In past posts I have shown images and clips of double unders and muscle ups, you can find them by search my site or looking further on google.

A wall ball is a dynamic move which sees you thrusting the wall against a wall and catching it. This move gets tiring very quickly!

I would love to say I got through the whole thing but with a cap of 12 minutes I only managed to get the wall balls done, with 45seconds to spare.

Yeah I could have made a start on the double unders but I was so wiped out by the wall balls I probably would have got all tangled up in the rope.

I want to add I was using a 7kg ball as we only have one 6kg that Kate had bugsied. Not that I’m complaining! Lol.


Sally Dixey is a Crossfit London personal trainer in Bethnal Green


Inspirational Women.

Today marks 3 years since I lost my wonderful mum with who I wish I could share the joy of motherhood with.

For years my mother and I would find it hard to see eye to eye on many things, it wasn’t until I came back from working on the cruise ship that we became friends and not just mother and daughter.

But by then time wasn’t on our side as she was diagnosed not long after.

She was a great lady -strong, kind, funny and smart and most importantly a wonderful Mum.

Everyday I strive to make her proud.


This week is now sad for one more reason as on Saturday my dear Nannie passed away peacefully after an epic 93 years.

A Wonderful Nannie
A Wonderful Nannie


Her soul is at rest now and I picture her and Mum together watching over us.

This is a week to reflect and be thankful for family and good friends.


Sally Dixey is a Personal Trainer with Crossfit London in Bethnal Green