• 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
  • New Balance Fresh Foam Zante V3 | Running Shoes Review

    New Balance Fresh Foam Zante v3 reflective review

    I've been running in the New Balance Vazee Pace since I reviewed them a couple of years ago so I was delighted to update my trainer collection and test the new Fresh Foam Zante v3 reflective.

    Appearance

    These trainers look exceptional and really stand out from the crowd. I love the solid reflective detail that just looks like part of the shoe. These trainers are great for running in the winter months as they are impossible to miss and reflective detailing on winter training apparel is really important.

    Reflective Detail

    A flash photo captures the reflective detail on the New Balance trainers

    These are a really modern, fresh pair of trainers and could be worn just as well as a pair of fashion trainers for every day activity as well as being a high spec pair of running trainers.

    New Balance Fresh Foam Zante v3 Reflective Sundried review

    Sundried Running Socks are the ideal liner

    Fit

    Unfortunately, I found the ankle really stiff. After a month of wearing them they really started to cut into my ankle and cause some discomfort. I haven't heard this from any other runners so it's possible it is just my foot anatomy. I've not had this issue from any other New Balance trainers but they do really seem to cut in. I will explore more because everything else about this shoe is great. 

    One great thing about these trainers is that there is plenty of room for your foot and they do not feel restrictive on the forefoot. After road testing the Adidas Adizero Adios 3 Running Shoes for review and continuing to run in them after testing, I found the Adidas quite narrow and restrictive. I could have definitely done with a size up, but maybe they would still be restrictive. Side by side, you can see how much more space there is in the forefoot of the New Balance trainers. This is a big plus as having a toe box that is too tight can make for some really uncomfortable runs, but the New Balance shoes have it just right. 

    Adidas running trainers review sundried

    Performance

    The sole of the New Balance Fresh Foam Zante v3 men's running trainers is actually quite stiff, but the grip on the road is amazing. When I run on wet concrete I can usually feel and hear a slip under the foot, but this is definitely reduced in these shoes which is a big bonus. 

    New Balance Fresh Foam Zante v3 reflective

    Price

    The RRP of these men's running trainers is £95 although they are currently on sale from the New Balance website for £66. I think this is a really reasonable price for such a responsive and attractive pair of shoes. Nike running trainers can cost you well over £100, so the New Balance price point is really competitive in comparison.

    New Balance Review Test

    Tested with the Sundried Men's Training Tights Roteck 2.0

    Sundried Grand Combin Long Sleeved Training Top 

    Posted by Daniel Puddick
  • NiceTri Grafman Middle Distance Triathlon

    Grafman Middle Distance Triathlon Review Sundried

    As a first timer to the 70.3 triathlon distance (half Ironman distance / middle distance) I wanted to find an event within a reasonable distance from home that was nice and flat (no point in adding any extra challenges into the mix) and with a swim in calm water as most of my open water swimming is in the sea, so a nice fresh water reservoir would be a welcome bonus. This left me with the Grafman Middle Distance triathlon in Grafham, Cambridgeshire. Although it is nowhere near Cambridge, it is a lovely little village.

    With a few sprint triathlons under the belt, the middle distance really is a new discipline to train for. My first ever half marathon was just 2 weeks before the event and went without too many problems but swimming this distance and staying calm is definitely a challenge. 

    The registration process the day before the event was very simple and quick;  the entire process only took around 4 minutes. It was nice to be able to walk into the transition area, find my number for the next day, and have a look at the swim start and course.

    The swim is a mass swim entry, which means running in and plunging into the water and racing off in a pack. I decided to hang out on the left of the pack and take a wide lap to avoid being pushed and shoved too much. The swim also includes an "Australian Exit" which means after one lap you leave the water, run past the crowds of people and the waiting photographers, only to jump back in and swim another lap. 

    Grafman Middle Distance Triathlon Swim Start Sundried

    Leaving the water there is lots of support and people to help you out if needed.There are marshals pointing to the transition area and plenty of support in the bike area. It was a really nice atmosphere; very friendly and with a good buzz about it all.

    The cycle section is on roads open to traffic; despite the traffic being very light, the few motorists who attempt to drive the same way as the cyclists it causes a bit of bunching. Being a non-drafting ride it is pretty hard when you can not overtake and there are several people in front. There wasn’t too much of the course like this and after 30k the riders seemed to space out. 

    The drink/gel stations were pretty efficient; you do not need to stop to be passed water or energy gels. Towards the end of the ride, I was worried I had made a wrong turn because I couldn't see any cyclists, but the marshalls are fantastic and I was directed the correct way and eventually saw a few cyclists in the distance.

    Finally, the run. The toughest part of the run for me was the last 5 or 6km when you pass the finish line and run away from the sounds of the tannoy and music. It had been a tough race so far, but I was nearly there. Like the ride, the run is a few laps back and forth with water and gel stations at either end.

    Grafman Middle Distance Half Ironman Triathlon Sundried

    Posted by Daniel Puddick
  • Adidas Originals Tubular Shadow Shoes Review

    Adidas Originals Tubular Shadow Trainers Sundried Review

    The Adidas Originals Tubular Shadow shoes are Adidas' latest addition to their ever-growing fashion trainer collection. The design of these shoes is a fusion of their famed tubular '93 runners and an updated, fresh style. These trainers take a classic and revamp them for modern tastes to compete with their contemporaries. The two-tone knit upper and contemporary wrap-around style is very popular at the moment making them one of the most popular trainers on the market right now.

    Comfort

    The thick, rubber sole means that these trainers stay comfortable even when you're on your feet all day. The enclosed 'booty' style that is found on most trainers these days prevents rubbing and chafing and the specialised sock lining stops blisters from forming.

    The knit-style upper is flexible and comfortable and makes these shoes feel like you've barely got anything on your feet at all. While not necessarily suitable for long-distance running, these trainers will certainly be your best friend for a tough gym session or more functional workout.

    Style

    Adidas has clearly tried to specifically bring their classic 1993 runners into the 21st century. They've stayed true to Adidas style as these are fairly similar to the Boost trainers that proved to be very popular after the release of Kanye's Yeezy trainers. The knitted upper follows in the footsteps of something Nike has been doing for a long time in their fly-knit collection and is possibly a fashion that will fall out of favour in a few years. That said, they're a very chic, subtle pair of trainers with not too much going on and definitely very minimalistic branding. This means they'll go with most outfits and will add a stylish twist to any workout. The trainers are available in a range of monochrome colours like black, white, and grey, but the two-tone design means they're eye-catching and stand out from other standard monochrome shoes. 

    Adidas Originals Tubular Shadow Knit Trainers Shoes Sundried

    Price

    The price of £79.95 is actually very fair, considering a lot of trainers these days can set you back well over £100. These are fashion trainers after all as opposed to functional technical trainers, but it's still a very reasonable cost for such stylish, modern shoes. This price is direct from Adidas, and you'll find them even cheaper from other distributors. 

    Verdict

    The Adidas Originals Tubular Shadow shoes are a modern twist on a classic and stay true to the Adidas brand. They stay on trend perfectly and would not look out of place in any scenario. The comfort of the trainers is exceptional, even if you have particularly wide feet. They may not be the most technical trainers, but they do the job and look great while they do it.

    These fresh, stylish trainers are available at £79.95 on the Adidas website

    Posted by Alexandra Parren
  • Kate Percy's Go Bites NEW Fruity Flavours Review

    Kate Percy Go Bites fitness healthy snack

    Kate Percy's Go Bites are a natural snack perfect for taking on-the-go or using as pre- or post-workout fuel. We had the pleasure of trying the exciting new fruity flavours and giving our verdict.

    Read our review of the original Go Bites flavours.

    Boost: Raspberry & Cacao

    I absolutely love the appearance of the new products by Kate Percy. The vibrant colours are very enticing and my mouth was watering before I even popped one in my mouth. The raspberry and cacao was my favourite flavour as it was so indulgent and flavourful – the perfect treat to look forward to during a tough marathon training run. 

    As with the original Go Bites, you get 3 balls in a pack and they are perfectly sized and portioned to have before, during, or after a workout. The texture is dense enough to be satisfying without being too chewy so as to hurt your mouth or be a chore to chew. Not only this, they're very handy and easy to store and so  are my absolute go-to mid-run fuel for these reasons. 

    Raspberry & Cacao Go Bites Kate Percy health snack

    Refuel: Strawberry & Cashew

    All of these Go Bites are made to Kate Percy's original recipe and promote the idea that real food fuels you better, which I am a huge proponent of. I find that a packet of Go Bites is the perfect running fuel and stops me from hitting the wall far better than any gel or other goo. Not only this, as they are made from 100% natural ingredients and free from gluten, wheat, and dairy, they are very easy on the stomach and you are unlikely to suffer any gastric issues when fuelling with them.

    I had my strawberry and cashew Go Bites after a winter warmer duathlon at the Lee Valley VeloPark. It was a tough race and so having these tasty little bites in my bag to eat afterwards and refuel was absolutely perfect. The taste is awesome – the authentic, natural ingredients taste amazing and the texture is perfect. They're very satisfying and they really sorted me out after the race.

    Recover: Blackcurrant & Blueberry

    The blackcurrant and blueberry bites are made with rice protein and so give a well needed protein hit after a workout. They contain no added sugar and so are a super healthy food to snack on – whether you're training or not!

    This flavour is really delicious, just like the others, and is perfect as a grab-and-go snack. The flavours are so authentic and the serving size is perfectly satisfying. 

    Blackcurrant and Blueberry healthy snack fitness running

    Verdict

    I absolutely cannot fault these delicious treats! They are unarguably healthy and are absolutely perfect for working out whether you have them before, during, or after. I really support Kate Percy's mantra that 'real food fuels you better' and these balls prove that point perfectly!

    Posted by Alexandra Parren