• The Accumulator Workout Review

    “The Revolutionary 30 day Fitness Plan”

    The Accumulator promises to take you from 0 to fit in a matter of 30 days with its online programme that gets progressively tougher as you do.

    The Accumulator 30 Day Fitness Plan

    How it works

    Membership

    The Accumulator works via a membership tier scheme, with varying levels of knowledge and feedback available at each level. You can try the programme for 7 days free or sign up for the full course. This provides you with a month's worth of workouts, sent to you on a daily basis, access to the blog, Facebook group, expert nutritional advice and a recipe library.

    After filling out a brief health questionnaire, you’ll be ready to go!

    The Team

    Sundried met the owner of The Accumulator, Paul Mumford, at Fitpro and were drawn to his positive nature and enthusiasm. His team are a group of like-minded, qualified personal trainers who are all very friendly and feature with Paul in the daily videos.

    Paul is more than just a friendly guy though, he has a wealth of knowledge and experience in the fitness industry. As well as mentoring a vast array of clients, Paul teaches other fitness professionals, talks at seminars and fitness events and writes for several national and international fitness publications. His first book, all about The Accumulator™ was published by Bloomsbury in January 2016.

    30 Days

    The 30 days begin easy; you’re guided in with a welcoming email from Paul, who guides you through what the process will be for the next 30 days and introduces his blog called “The Knowledge” as well as an exclusive Facebook group for other members of the challenge to share advice and motivation. There is also an online exercise directory in case you need to go over any of the moves.

    The programme works by gradually increasing your workout time by adding an exercise a day until you end up with a full 30 minutes worth of training.

    Every day you are emailed the next workout and knowing Paul, he’ll have this sent out ready for the early risers at around 6am. All of the workouts are body weight only, so all you need is time and a workout space. Reading Paul’s email should get you motivated and ready to go, so it's very simple and easy to get along with.

    The moves progress as the 30 days goes on from push ups to plyometrics, but Paul keeps his emails lighthearted and chirpy to keep you going. The videos feature himself and one of the team completing the moves with you so you can be checking your form as you go and won’t forget what you’re doing.

    As one exercise ends, the next is queued up in the corner of your screen, so you’ll always feel comfortable with what’s to come. The exercises are always kept simple and explained clearly, plus of course you can refer to the exercise glossary whenever you need to if a particular move troubles you. All the exercises will have variations so you can work up to the full move if need be. As the course goes on, the exercises and routines get a little more challenging, with plyometrics and double sessions, but you still only need your body weight and some space and of course, your fitness is improving as you go, so you’re perfectly capable of the tougher moves.

    Who is The Accumulator for?

    As a stand alone programme, this is great for beginner to intermediate, or for those who struggle with ideas for routines as it takes out the guesswork. If you're someone who is motivated by being part of a team, you’ll benefit from Paul’s team's encouragement and round-the-clock guidance in the Facebook page, where you can talk with other members.

    Those with intermediate to advanced levels of fitness will find the routine too easy and will need to find a more complicated training regime which includes compound lifts to achieve their goals. If you’re training at a competitive level, already regularly training or looking to gain muscle, then try a more advanced training routine.

    You can try our Sundried workouts here.

    Overall, the routine is simple and fun and great for those who may be fearful of large gyms. Paul's daily emails are friendly and educational and the site blog is filled with plenty of training tips and knowledge.

    Posted by Victoria Gardner
  • Garmin Forerunner 735XT Triathlon Watch Review

    Garmin Forerunner 735XT Triathlon Watch Review

    The Garmin Forerunner 735XT delivers everything you could want from a triathlon watch and more. It is designed for elite athletes and people who are serious about their training progress, but it is suitable for the more casual exerciser too. It provides wrist-based heart rate monitoring, all-day activity tracking, and will take you from one sport to another with just the touch of a button.

    Advanced Features

    The 735XT is more than just a running watch. It records your stride length, time balance, and more while running (although many of the running metrics features are only available when the watch is paired with a chest-based heart rate monitor), and will calculate your VO2 Max and predict race times based on your training history. It also offers lactate threshold estimates but, again, you will need an additional chest-based heart rate monitor for this which is not included in your £399 purchase of the watch.

    Technology

    The Forerunner 735XT is smart and will connect to your phone seamlessly through Bluetooth to provide notifications from your phone, automatic uploads to Garmin’s online community, and live tracking of your training. Syncing the watch with your phone is very easy and has worked every time without any issues for me. The GPS signal is very strong and the watch links up very quickly so that you can get on with your sport without having to wait around for your watch to be ready. 

    Garmin Forerunner 735XT Triathlon Watch Product Review Activity Tracker

    As a multisport watch, the 735XT is not as advanced as some of its siblings like the 935, but it still provides excellent support. It has a triathlon function so that you can time your transitions and switch between sports with just one press of a button. This feature also translates to duathlons and brick workouts for your training. If you only run, then this watch is perhaps too unnecessarily advanced for you, and you'd be better suited to a Forerunner 235.

    Practicality

    The all-day activity tracking is a fantastic bonus feature on this advanced watch. The wrist-based heart rate monitor works all day while you’re wearing it and will provide you with a resting heart rate, recovery heart rate, and a graph of activity over the last 4 hours. This is really useful for heart-rate zone training, especially as the stats provided after your workout will tell you how long you were in each heart rate zone while you were active. The watch also provides you with an estimated VO2 max which is great for serious athletes. Part of the all-day activity tracking also includes step count which can be a great incentive to move more, especially on rest days. The watch also syncs with apps like MyFitnessPal so that your daily calorie burn is automatically taken into account when you track your food for the day.

    Garmin Forerunner 735XT Triathlon Watch Product Review

    A Closer Look

    The watch itself is light at 41g and the watch face is not as big as some of the other Garmin watches like the 235 or 935, so it is better suited for all-day wear. It has a rubberised strap for comfort, although once you're super sweaty after a tough workout, you don’t really want to keep it on as it gets a bit uncomfortable. The various displays are user-friendly and although the watch has a lot of features, they’re easy to find so you don’t feel like you're missing out on useful training information.

    The battery life of this watch could be better, especially as it’s designed to be used for triathlons; I wonder whether it could last a full-length Ironman event.

    Verdict

    On the whole, I am so impressed by this watch. Garmin has found the perfect balance between the casual running watch and the advanced athlete's companion. It gives more than its cheaper counterpart the 235 and is more user-friendly than the more advanced 935. It is perfect for serious triathletes but can also comfortably be used by people who may just be getting into the sport or who just like to swim, bike, and run. It has the option of more advanced training stats if you really want to go into them while keeping the useful everyday information at the ready. 

    Comfort: 9

    Durability: 10

    Battery Life: 6

    Technical Information: 9

    Value for money: 10

    Overall Score: 44/50

    Posted by Alexandra Parren