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Ten things that annoy us the most in the gym

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illustration of muscly man taking a selfie in a mirror with unimpressed woman
People aren’t a fan of gym selfies or loud grunting (Picture: Ella Byworth)

The gym can be a place to escape, a haven for ‘me-time’, a sanctuary of self-improvement.

It can also be a sweaty hell-hole filled with awkward grunting, cringey selfies and far too much testosterone.

Our experience of the gym often comes down to the clientele and whether or not they have good gym etiquette. And it turns out – there are loads of things that can seriously annoy us in the gym.

From being ostentatiously naked in the changing rooms to playing music without headphones – our gym pet peeves are really putting us off, and a new study has revealed the things that we hate the most.

According to data analysed by GolfSupport, there are ten things that gym-goers do that will make our blood boil. How many of these have you seen? Or even done yourself?

1) Someone choosing the machine next to you, despite others being free

A whopping 86% of gym-goers say that this is the biggest annoyance at the gym.

We get it – nobody wants someone looking over your shoulder as you adjust your speed. Are they racing you? Are they silently judging your incline level? We don’t need this added stress.

Ever heard of personal space?

Illustration of three women doing a plank
Why are you so close to me? (Picture: Ella Byworth)

2) People who stand and wait for you to finish on a piece of equipment

82% of gym-goers find this extremely irritating.

Talk about pressure. Finishing this set of leg presses isn’t going to be any quicker just because you’re staring. If anything – it might make us go slower. So back off.

3) People who try to ‘reserve’ machines

8 in 10 people are infuriated by this annoying habit.

First of all, this isn’t a beach. You can’t run down before breakfast and bag the best treadmill with your towel.

If you’re not on the machine, then it’s free. Surely?

4) Loud grunters

Unsurprisingly, vocal weightlifters are not welcomed with 77% ranking grunters among their least favoured gym habits.

Because seriously, who are you trying to impress? Unless you’re literally attempting to beat Serena Williams in a grand slam title – you don’t need to be making that much noise.

5) People who come over and ask how many reps you have left

71% hate it when people do this. Presumably because it’s none of their business.

‘How many reps have I got left? Oh a million, Sharon. A million.’

6) Listening to music without headphones

It’s baffling that anyone would do this in a world wear headphone, even wireless headphones, exist – but it is happening and 66% of you hate it.

Your workout playlist can be really important, and really personal. Just because heavy metal helps you smash out your final set of sprints – that doesn’t mean anyone else wants to hear it.

Illustration of woman running with headphones on
Hello – headphones exist. (Picture: Ella Byworth)

7) Not putting equipment away

In most gyms there are literally signs everywhere telling you to put your equipment away.

It’s not surprising that 60% of people find this the biggest irritant in the gym. Leaving rogue dumbbells strewn on the gym floor is dangerous and really annoying for the next person who wants to use them.

8) People watchers

54% of people say this is the most annoying gym habit. And it is seriously creepy.

People watching is perfect if you’re sat at a table on a busy boulevard in Paris, but it’s not OK to just stare someone out while they’re doing crunches. Obviously.

9) People who take loud phone calls

This is an irritating habit for a number of reasons – and 47% of you agree.

Firstly, there is a time and a place for phone calls – can it really not wait until you leave the gym? Secondly it is often such an obvious attempt to assert some kind of authority – we get it, you’re very busy and important. Now can please hang up?

10) People who spit in the water fountain

Possibly the grossest bad habit on the list – we have all seen someone do this.

44% of people think this is the worst thing you can do in the gym. And we are inclined to agree. This is a public water resource… just no.

‘Humans have come a long way in the last 250 million years. It’s 2019 and we must consider ourselves at the very peak of civilisation. So why is it all these things seem to be forgotten as soon as we walk into the gym?’ says Gary Lockwood, CEO of 24/7 Fitness.

‘Why do some gym members regress to at best small children and at worst a lawless mob?

‘First on the list has to be failure to put weights away. Leaving machines fully loaded with large weights and then watching other smaller members struggle to take them off.

‘Second on the list are the texters. This is a relatively recent offence that appeared around the same time as the mobile phone. Members hogging machines to use as armchairs while they text their friends.

‘My last choice was very difficult to narrow down. Members who drop weights crashing to the floor or the grunters, who scream like silver-back gorillas lifting even the most modest weights.

‘It’s hard to believe, but the gym is a public place just like any other. We all share the space.

‘Most are incredible value for money and offer a great service. They are a wonder of the modern world. So please, be considerate to the people around you and the world you live in and act in a civilised manner when you want to work out.’

The survey also revealed that couples who grope each other between workouts and people who film each other were high up on the list of unappealing gym behaviours.

So how many of these habits are you guilty of? If you’ve done more than a couple, you might be enemy number one at your local gym.

I am Team GB

Toyota has teamed up with Team GB to re-launch the hugely successful participation campaign ‘I am Team GB’.

Inspired by the achievements of Team GB athletes and the amazing efforts of local community heroes, Team GB has created ‘The Nation’s Biggest Sports Day’, which will take place on the 24thAugust.

Over the weekend, there will be hundreds of free and fun activities across the country, put on by an army of volunteers; the ‘I am Team GB Games Makers’.

To Join the Team and be part of The Nation’s Biggest Sports Day sign up at: www.IAmTeamGB.com

This killer core workout doesn’t involve any crunches

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Male athlete doing sit-ups in a park
(Picture: Getty)

I think we can all agree that crunches are the worst. They’re hard, they burn and they never give us the instant abs we’re hoping for.

But core strength is really important. It helps with stability, flexibility and balance. And you need a strong core to be able to do any kind of functional movement.

So what do you do if you want a killer core but can’t stand sit-ups?

We spoke to elite personal trainer, Bobby Holland Hanton – who also happens to be Chris Hemsworth’s stunt double – to find out how he works on his core.

And guys – there’s not a crunch in sight.

Air squats

It’s a staple in most exercise programs, and with good reason.

By working the large muscles of the glutes, quads and hamstrings you will build muscle while burning energy.

Performing Air Squats to a comfortable depth, where your hips descend below the level of your knees, also has the added benefit of improving hip mobility.

Personal trainer doing squats
Bobby is a former gymnastics champion, now he is skilled in scuba diving, kickboxing and parkour  (Picture: Centr)

Mastering the Air Squat is a prerequisite for completing weighted squat exercises, and will have carry over benefits to all other lower body movements.

How to do it:

Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and hands by your side.

Sink down as if you’re sitting on a chair, pushing your weight through your heels so your knees are in line with your toes.

You can bring your arms in front of your chest to stablise yourself. Then stand back up to the starting position.

Plank pulses

Performing a plank correctly involves contracting the glutes, quads, abdominals and lats with power to maintain a straight line from your ankles to your shoulders.

It’s used by everyone from professional athletes to fitness models to develop a strong and tight core.

Add in the pulses to work your calf muscles, and the humble plank is transformed in the Plank Pulse, one of the most challenging and valuable exercises in your toolbox.

How to do it:

Begin in a forearm plank position, with your back straight and your bum tucked in.

Keeping your forearms in position, pulse your body forward so that you are on the tips of your toes and your shoulders are almost above your wrists.

Pulse back to the starting position and repeat.

Medicine ball wood chops

Rotational movements are sometimes overlooked in exercise programs, but their ability to build strong oblique muscles and whole-body stability is second to none.

This Medicine Ball Wood Chop combines rotation with a squat and overhead press, resulting in one of the most valuable exercises you could perform.

Although a Medicine Ball is preferred, this exercise can also be completed with a dumbbell (held sideways), kettlebell or anything else heavy.

How to do it:

This is a variation on the traditional wood chop. You will need a medicine ball or other heavy weight.

Personal trainer lifting a medicine ball
Bobby trains six days a week, paring it back or ramping it up depending on the movie he’s working on.(Picture: Centr)

Begin standing, legs hips-width apart and holding the ball in front of your chest.

Raise the ball straight above your head, then back down as you squat and tap the ball on the ground to the right of your body.

Raise back up to the starting position then complete on the other side.

Bear crawl

While kettlebells, dumbbells and medicine balls are useful tools when it comes to completing a well-rounded program, sometimes your own body is all you need.

Crawling exercises are used to build whole body strength, balance and coordination.

Additionally, the Bear Crawl is performed at speed to increase the amount of energy burned.

Regardless of your training goal, the Bear Crawl is a valuable inclusion to your program.

How to do it:

From a squatting position, your feet slightly wider than your shoulders, place both hands on the ground so your body forms a kind of table – resting on your toes, your knees hovering above the ground and your back flat.

From here, crawl forward on your hands and toes, with your feet and knees kicking out a little wider than your hands to generate speed.

Then push backwards on hands and toes to return to the start.

Arch hold swims

When it comes to body-weight training, exercises for the back can sometimes be overlooked. However, strengthening these muscles is important for shoulder health and promoting good posture.

Plus, Arch Hold Swims with a static extension of the hips and upper back strengthen the glutes and core.

The ‘swimming’ movements performed with the arms will have you feeling the burn in no time.

Personal trainer holding an arch position
Bobby’s main focus is building a strong core and solid total-body conditioning (Picture: Centr)

How to do it:

Take the superman position by lying on your belly and hovering your feet and arms slightly off the ground as you tense your abs and glutes.

From here, bring your hands toward your face, bending your elbows.

Then, straighten your arms so your hands sweep out on either side, before bringing them back to your face again and back up.

Ensure they are hovering for the entire movement.

I am Team GB

Toyota has teamed up with Team GB to re-launch the hugely successful participation campaign ‘I am Team GB’.

Inspired by the achievements of Team GB athletes and the amazing efforts of local community heroes, Team GB has created ‘The Nation’s Biggest Sports Day’, which will take place on the 24thAugust.

Over the weekend, there will be hundreds of free and fun activities across the country, put on by an army of volunteers; the ‘I am Team GB Games Makers’.

To Join the Team and be part of The Nation’s Biggest Sports Day sign up at: www.IAmTeamGB.com

Rock Your Ugly photo series shares the raw stories of people’s insecurities

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Would you dare to bare your biggest body-related insecurity, with no makeup, no photoshop, no holds barred?

That’s what Waleed Shah asks people to do for his photo series, Rock Your Ugly.

Waleed was first inspired to create a series of images around body image after struggling with his own insecurities around his belly.

‘I took a self-portrait and posted it on Instagram but didn’t really do anything about till the summer,’ Waleed explains on his website. ‘I went on holiday, ate a whole bunch of junk to the point where my wife started calling me Pablo Escobar (referencing the belly). That was it. I read a book called “The Obesity Code”, applied it and dropped 10kg in 3 months.

‘I had wanted to explore other people’s body insecurities since then but never got around to it until a few weeks ago when I lost my best friend to cancer and wanted something, anything, to get my mental state back on track.

‘I decided to pick up this project and see it through it. The process was like group therapy. I would listen to someone else’s pain and share mine.’

For each photo, Waleed asked his subject to showcase their biggest body-related insecurity front and centre, and to share the story behind it.

We’ve shared photos and a section of each person’s story below, but if you’d like to read more you can do so on Waleed’s website.

Shebani

Body image photo series - ROCK YOUR UGLY. An exploration of mental health issues and body insecurites. Raw, no make up, no photoshop
Shebani, who grew up as Sarah, had surgery to change her breasts (Picture: Waleed Shah)

‘My earliest memory of feeling less pretty than every other girl around me was when I realized my breasts were not growing regularly.

‘I was 14 years old and I was sitting around the dining table with my family, and my mom had noticed my breasts under my t-shirt shaped very oddly, and she asked “Sarah, what’s wrong with your breasts?”

‘I know that she meant well and that she probably thought I was wearing a funny looking bra underneath, but I got so mad and embarrassed that she mentioned it in front of everybody else. I didn’t know what it was, neither did she, we thought, hey! Late bloomer! They’re still growing!

‘But throughout the years, I visited many doctors, surgeons, and gynecologists, nothing was ever explained to me properly, I was misdiagnosed and not taken seriously. So because of my breast deformity, I started hating my body,

‘I had always been heavier than all my friends, I hated my brown eyes, I hated my bushy uncontrollable curly hair. I hated it all. I envied every single girl that walked my way. I would just look and I’d be like, “why don’t my breasts look like that?”

I did all sorts of treatments to straighten my hair, I wore blue lenses, and I went on every single diet or exercise program you can possibly imagine, the minute I’d eat a plate of pasta or indulge in food like any other human being would, I’d gain all the weight back and even more.

‘This lasted my whole life, up until the age of 23, I met a great cosmetic surgeon and she explained to me that I have a breast deformity called “Tubular Asymmetrical breasts.”

‘My case was a little complicated and it required two constructive surgeries. My whole family was kind enough to help me and support me with this, and I decided to go under the knife. This would be the first time I speak of my breast augmentation publicly, but yes! I got them done, and guess what? They’re hella expensive and I rock them every chance I get, because I never got to enjoy them growing up as a teen, and I only had normal looking breasts starting at the age of 24, that’s only 4 years ago.

‘So I love them, the scars, the experience, and everything that comes with it.

 

Kimberly Cary

Body image photo series - ROCK YOUR UGLY. An exploration of mental health issues and body insecurites. Raw, no make up, no photoshop Pictured: Kimberly
Kimberly has alopecia (Picture: Waleed Shah)

‘I’ve had Alopecia since I was 19 and now I’m 40, so it’s been quite a journey.

‘I’m the only one in my family that has it. I guess you can say I am the unicorn. However, there are plenty of men and women who grew up with this disorder.

‘But, to grow up with hair and then all of a sudden it decides that it doesn’t want to grow back was difficult to experience. A lot of people would tell me that it probably came from “STRESS”.

‘But when the Universalis stage decided to show up three years ago, I wasn’t stressed. So there goes that theory.

‘In 2012, I got so tired of worrying about my hair and living the “you have to grow it back to be beautiful” lifestyle that I went to a salon and they buzz cut it all the way down.’

 

Yasmin

Body image photo series - ROCK YOUR UGLY. An exploration of mental health issues and body insecurites. Raw, no make up, no photoshop Pictured: Yasmin Meber
Yasmin’s skin condition leaves her with marks on her back (Picture: Waleed Shah)

‘I think I was around 14 when I started developing a skin condition called Tinea Versicolor. It’s a common fungal infection of the skin which results in discolored patches.

‘I was in a summer camp at the time and we were supposed to go swimming when one of the girls had noticed a big patch on my back and she said in a very disgusted tone, “Oh my gosh, what’s that on your back?!” I was in shock and started to panic thinking that it was an allergic reaction to something.

‘I told my mom about it and she took me to see a dermatologist. He looked at my skin under UV light (or something) and it looked so scary that my mom actually started crying.

‘I remember trying everything. There are different ointments, shampoos you can use and even pills. I’ve never tried the tablets though, I probably will at some point. Sometimes it actually completely clears up and my back looks amazing! Then other times it’ll flare up or it might stay that way for the entire year, even when it’s cold. It’s really unpredictable.

‘Then when I was about 24 I felt like I was fighting against something that’s going to be with me forever and there’s nothing I can do about it. So I thought, “I should start learning to love this, so-called, ugly part of myself.”

‘I’m 28 now and I started really paying attention to my mental health and I felt like this was really connected to it. From a physical standpoint, I don’t like the way it looks, but I also don’t like the way it’s making me feel; allowing it to control me.’

 

Lotus

Body image photo series - ROCK YOUR UGLY. An exploration of mental health issues and body insecurites. Raw, no make up, no photoshop Pictured: Lotus
Lotus has other body image issues beyond her burns (Picture: Waleed Shah)

‘When I was 11 months old I was sleeping near my older sister, about 7 years older than me, my brother had a fever, so my mom was with him all night.

‘I fell off the bed and it was winter time, and my arm was resting in between the spaces of the winter heater. It took time for mom to wake up and come to me and that’s why my arm was burnt.’

 

Tac

Body image photo series - ROCK YOUR UGLY. An exploration of mental health issues and body insecurites. Raw, no make up, no photoshop Pictured: Tac
Tac has learned to embrace his body (Picture: Waleed Shah)

‘I went through all the body types you can think of. I was skinny, I was fat, I was a power lifter but I was never comfortable with my body.

‘I had great physique as a power lifter but I couldn’t move. I was walking pretty awkward and sweating a lot and it just didn’t feel good inside.

‘The second I realized that it was how I felt and the vulnerability I experienced when I was honest with myself, I naturally started eating what was healthy for me. I stopped caring about the amount of food I was eating as long as what I was putting in my body was healthy.

‘With that came a natural realization of how beautiful I actually was. I was comfortable, I moved freely.

‘When I looked in the mirror I saw a beautiful confident, sexy man. My flaws on me were like rocks on a mountain.

‘My skin was better, my beard grew better and I had no cholesterol or blood pressure issues anymore.

‘The main thing that I tell people now is that the second you are vulnerable and honest with yourself you won’t have to force diets or other negative experiences. It will naturally come to you.’

 

Maha

Body image photo series - ROCK YOUR UGLY. An exploration of mental health issues and body insecurites. Raw, no make up, no photoshop Pictured: Maha
Maha feels insecure about her nose (Picture: Waleed Shah)

‘I get bullied about my nose a lot, I keep getting comments saying “If you get a nose job, you would look much better.”

‘I used to be insecure about my nose when I was younger, until I watched an episode of the Tyra Banks Show back in grade 7. It literally changed my life and the way I look at myself and people. The title of the episode was “Rock your Ugly” which means: That specific thing that you’re insecure about, is the one thing that makes you unique, celebrate it, rock it and be proud of it, because every single one of us has an insecurity, if we keep trying to change and hide it, we will all end up looking the same.’

 

Laura

Body image photo series - ROCK YOUR UGLY. An exploration of mental health issues and body insecurites. Raw, no make up, no photoshop Pictured: Laura
Laura has scoliosis (Picture: Waleed Shah)

‘I have idiopathic scoliosis; we found out about it when I was 5. I had a really bad cough or something and was asked to get an x-ray of my chest done and that’s when they first saw that my spine wasn’t straight.

‘Nobody really knows why it happens when it’s idiopathic and not injury or puberty related.

‘I’ve considered surgery a lot. It’s a really risky surgery and can leave you paralyzed or with loss of feeling in various parts of your body.

‘I’m getting to the point where I want the surgery and I change my mind on the daily. A big deterrent for me, other than the risks, is the price – $120,000. I could afford it when I was younger through my parents, but considering costs I have now, I’d either have to save up a ton or figure out residency in Italy and try to apply there with insurance.

‘And that’s something that I do want for myself but then, on the other hand, I want to remember that morally I think people should be okay accepting and seeing different types of bodies and not just the same one every single day.

‘I think beauty is definitely subjective. My favorite moments are when I look at someone and I think they’re stunning but my friend looks at them and they’re like, oh, I don’t know. Yes, there are global standards of beauty like women with little noses and big eyes but for the most part, you don’t know what a person finds attractive.’

 

Huda

Body image photo series - ROCK YOUR UGLY. An exploration of mental health issues and body insecurites. Raw, no make up, no photoshop Pictured: Huda
Huda has fillers to ‘correct’ asymmetry in her face (Picture: Waleed Shah

‘When I was a child, I fell off the top bunk of my bed and broke my chin.

‘As I grew older, my face started to grow towards one side and my chin started to go off centre. And it’s not a slight deviation, it was clearly visible, like, you can’t miss it.

‘These days it’s actually not that obvious anymore, because I had fillers done a few years ago. You really have to concentrate to see it and if I don’t tell you about it then you probably would never notice.

‘The fillers are just a quick fix and not a permanent solution. There’s a surgery that I could do but it’s quite major, expensive, and would cause a lot of bruising. The recovery time is really long and I’m just not in a point in my life where I’m ready to do that.

‘You know when I talk about my chin, I think about people who are dying and starving in the world and it makes me feel so silly. But then I get even more insecure about it because I can’t talk about it in fear of people judging me for this little thing.

‘But to me, it’s actually not little. It’s like when a child loses his teddy bear. It’s quite a big deal for the child but it’s insignificant the rest of the world.

‘So, maybe I’ll get the surgery done when I retire or something, or maybe I won’t. I have no idea. Maybe I’ll be at peace with it one day and see myself as a beautiful woman.’

Joelle

Body image photo series - ROCK YOUR UGLY. An exploration of mental health issues and body insecurites. Raw, no make up, no photoshop Pictured: Joelle
Joelle had her first open heart surgery when she was under one year old (Picture: Waleed Shah)

‘So I have this scar on my body, which is about I think 20 centimetres. I have a congenital heart defect, which means I had it the moment I was born.

‘I got my first open heart surgery when I was just under a year old, then a second one when I was nine years old. I have like five or six different defects which no one in the world has in this combination. The second surgery replaced a valve for an artificial one, so you can actually hear my heart ticking like a clock.

‘Physically I can only do 70% of other people’s 100%. I get tired quickly and need more time to recover.

‘I want to do more but physically I can’t sometimes. I’ve learned to know my boundaries and listen to my body. I’ll take a break when I need to but sometimes the people around me also need to remind me to take it easy.’

MORE: Dancers with Down’s syndrome showcased in gorgeous photo series

MORE: People with mental health issues wear their thoughts on their faces for powerful photo series

MORE: Photo series explores what it’s like to be non-binary

I still have pen pals at 41

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I get some very curious looks when I tell people that I have pen pals.

Pen pals. You know, letters? Stamps? Taking the time to sit down and write out your thoughts to a friend you’ve never met? Yes, people still do this!

I truly love receiving letters because it means a friend took the time to write to me. There are aspects of life today that definitely make maintaining friendships easier, and social media is undeniably one. But … well, it’s really not that social is it?

I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve run into someone I haven’t seen in a while and they have nothing to ask me because they’ve already gone through my Facebook posts. Our friendship remains online, unable to translate into the real world.

When my family moved from my childhood home of Montreal when I was eight, my best friend Alison and I exchanged letters almost immediately. It was a way to keep in touch, however simple our conversations were at the time.

Back when I read the teen magazines of my childhood, there was always little section in the back where you could list your name and let readers know you were looking for a pen pal, which is how I met Laura, my second pen pal – a fellow fan of New Kids On The Block and now one of my dearest friends.

My personal ‘worldwide web’ grew organically, I got to know about people I’d never have met otherwise and just became more connected to the world and the people that lived in it. Of course I’m older now and sometimes I get behind on my correspondence, but those moments when I get to sit down are priceless.

I breathe then I make a cup of coffee and put pen to paper. I read what my friend has written from Austria or California, and the world slows down for a bit.

Pen pals Kelly and Beatrice
My friend Beatrice visited from Vienna after 20 years of letter writing (Picture: Logan Dunn)

I have met a few of my pen pals over the years. My friend Beatrice visited from Vienna after 20 years of letter writing, and it was like meeting my ultra-cool Austrian twin sister. One of the most memorable occasions was finally meeting my friend Shanna – at her wedding.

We started writing to each other when we were 16 and for whatever reason, we never spoke on the phone. So when I knocked on the door that October day, I had no idea what she sounded like and vice versa.

It left me speechless! Everyone at the wedding knew me as ‘the pen pal’, and commented that I must know Shanna in a way that no one else did – which is so true!

Those letters were and are for our eyes only, giving us both a chance to let our guards down.

To me a letter is similar to a diary entry, but in this case it’s being shared with a treasured person. I really believe there is something to putting your words to paper, because we can’t always verbalise what we need or want to say.

I adore meeting my friends for a tea or an after work pint, but those conversations don’t always get to what’s deep down because time is a concern or you’re not in a place to speak frankly. Of course you can still have very meaningful conversations, but whether it’s dating or casual friendships, relationships feel quite disposable now.

There’s something very personal to letter writing, which is why my pen pal friends are so close to my heart.

Now, Shanna and I meet every few years, most recently celebrating our birthdays in Las Vegas (her 40th and my 41st).

I love to go back through old letters and soak in memories of days gone by. I’m suddenly a teenager again, back in high school dreaming of the future. Friends praying they’d be parents one day or struggling with the loss of a parent much too soon.

I’d like to believe that writing letters has made me a better friends: a better listener, more mindful of my own words and just aware of how precious time is.

As I get older, these friendships mean more to me than ever. It’s amazing to see how far we’ve all come and where have yet to go. It’s all there in our letters.

To this day, one of my favourite movies is the 1940 classic The Shop Around the Corner (you might know its remake, You’ve Got Mail). They play two bickering coworkers who, unbeknownst to them, are falling in love through their letters addressed to ‘Dear Friend’.

When Jimmy Stewart’s character finally realises what’s up, he sums my pen pal friendships perfectly with the line: ‘There might be a lot we don’t know about each other. You know, people seldom go to the trouble of scratching the surface of things to find the inner truth.’

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Lowest fat beef burger in the UK is now available in Iceland – and it’s syn-free

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UK's lowest fat beef burger on a plate with salad and mustard
It costs £15 for a pack of two burgers. (Picture: Iceland)

BBQ season is tough if you’re trying to watch what you eat.

There are only so many soggy mushrooms and corn on the cobs we can stomach before we are inevitably tempted by the main event – the burgers.

Like most processed meat products, burgers are generally pretty high in saturated fat. Which is fine on the odd occasion, but after your sixth BBQ of the summer, you might want to start cutting down.

Luckily, Iceland have launched an incredibly low fat burger that Slimming World followers will love – because it’s ‘syn’ free.

Slimming World ‘syns’ are treats that are higher in calories – like biscuits, sweets and alcohol – that you can eat while following the diet, but only in very limited amounts. So to find a burger that is completely free of ‘syn’ is the holy grail for meat lovers.

Made from 100% lean steak, Iceland’s burger contains 4.3g of fat per 100g – the lowest fat content of any other burger on the market.

UK's lowest fat beef burger
The burgers are completely ‘syn’ free. (Picture: Iceland)

It actually contains less fat that Slimming World’s own Iceland ‘syn’ free beef quarter pounders, which have 5.2g of fat per 100g.

Tesco’s Finest steak burgers have 11.7g of fat per 100g and Asda’s beef burgers contain 13g of fat per 100g.

Marks and Spencers and Waitrose have the highest fat content on the burger market, with 19.40g and 20.90g per 100g respectively.

So if you’re looking to reduce your fat intake – Iceland’s option is the clear winner. But, there’s a catch. It isn’t cheap.

The low-fat patties will cost you £15 for a pack of two. £7.50 per burger. Ouch.

But, with 100% lean steak made by luxury Scottish butcher Donald Russell – the hefty price tag might be worth it for the quality.

There’s only one way to find out – fire up the barbie.

MORE: Ten things that annoy us the most in the gym

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What I Rent: Tessa and Rob, £1,400 a month for a two-bedroom flat in Muswell Hill

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what I rent Tessa and dan in Muswell Hill, couple sitting on sofa in living room
Tessa and Rob share a two-bedroom flat in Muswell Hill (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)

Our weekly series What I Rent is taking an honest look at the state of renting in the UK; the good, the bad, and the seriously overpriced tiny studio flats.

Each week we have a look around someone’s rented property, taking in exactly what they get for what they pay – because how can we know if we’re getting a good deal if we have nothing to compare it to?

Last week we marvelled at a museum-like home filled with antiques in fancy Chelsea, rented by newlywed couple Matthew and Charles.

This time around we’ve headed to north London, visiting a two-bedroom flat in Muswell Hill rented by civil servant Tessa and Rob, who works in corporate partnerships for a charity.

Tessa, Muswell Hill - tess and dan standing in the entrace
They pay £1,400 a month between them (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)

Hi, Tessa! How much rent do you pay? 

£1,400 total. We nearly split it but I pay a little bit more because I earn a bit more money than Rob does.

It’s about £250 in bills each month. Council tax is a kicker!

What do you get for what you pay?

Five rooms (six if you include the balcony); that includes two bedrooms and one bathroom.

It’s top floor in the roof so space is tight, but we have so many skylights and double doors onto the balcony from the living room, so all the light we get is a massive bonus.

And having a spare room in London feels like such a luxury. We definitely got lucky.

Do you think you have a good deal?

Generally yes – we rented direct with our landlord through OpenRent and they are genuinely nice people. We also avoided agency fees which is great.

Tessa, Muswell Hill
The couple have made the flat feel like home with plenty of prints, posters, and plants (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)

What area is your home in?

Muswell Hill – it’s part of the reason we think we got such a good deal! We’d really have resented paying what we do now if we were still in in Wood Green (where we lived before) but because Muswell Hill is basically it’s own small village it feels worth it.

We really resent travelling into central London on the weekend and try to avoid it as much as possible!

How long have you lived in your place?

About 10 months now. We’ve already told the landlord we’d like to stay for another year.

Do you like the area?

We love it so much. I come from the middle of the countryside so it’s nice having that calming village feel to it.

The only downside is there is no tube connection so we have to get a bus to Highgate to get on the tube to get to work.

But because we love the area so much we rarely leave it on the weekend.

Tessa, Muswell Hill what i rent - jeremy corbyn valentine's day card
They’ve been living in the flat for 10 months, and have already told their landlord they’d like to stay for another year (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)

Do you feel like you have enough space?

Most of the time yes. The sloping roofs in the bedroom make the logistics of wardrobes hard and we both definitely have way too much stuff.

It’s definitely a flat that disincentivises hoarding.

What’s it like living together?

Really really chill and easy. We’re both pretty similar in terms of tidiness and both just love being at home cuddling on the sofa (lame).

We’ve both said we expected it to be a lot harder than it’s turned out to be.

How have you made the flat feel like home?

So much art. Just way way too many posters (half of which still need framing). Loads of plants. And we’ve slowly tried to invest in furniture we actually like and that will last. It feels like a grown up flat, even if we don’t actually feel like that.

what i rent tess and dan muswell hill, shoe rack
Space is limited, but they make do (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)

Are there any problems with the flat you have to put up with?

The only major issue we had was leaving a Christmas tree on the balcony for slightly too long after it had died, and then trying to work out how to dispose of it without littering the whole building with pine needles… but that was very much an issue of our own making.

It’s also not brilliant in the heat which we’ve found in the last week – all the skylights make it a bit of a greenhouse…

But that’s being pretty picky. We’re pretty lucky!

Have you considered buying a place?

Yeah that’s next on the list – it’s just trying to save for a deposit which is proving really hard. Hopefully by this time next year we’ll be in a better place and might be able to start considering options around shared ownership.

Sounds very responsible. Let’s have a look around. 

Tessa, Muswell Hill what I rent, the couple in the living room
The couple in the living room (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)
Tessa, Muswell Hill the living room
We like those cushions (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)
Tessa, Muswell Hill what i rent - living room with a view of the balcony
Peek through the window and you can see the balcony (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)
Tessa, Muswell Hill
It’s a top floor flat so yes, there’s a sloped ceiling (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)
Tessa, Muswell Hill what i rent - colourcoded bookshelves in the living room
Colour-coded bookshelves may be controversial, but we’re big fans (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)
Tessa, Muswell Hill
That little reading nook is lovely too (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)
Tessa, Muswell Hill what i rent - drinks table in reading nook
Plus there’s a drinks table! (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)
what i rent muswell hill tessa and dan - the kitchen
Here’s the kitchen (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)
Tessa, Muswell Hill
Not massive, but they make do (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)
Tessa, Muswell Hill what I Rent - I want to be inside EU poster on the wall
(Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)
muswell hill what I rent tessa and dan, the spare bedroom
This is the spare bedroom, which doubles as some extra storage space (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)
Tessa, Muswell Hill what i rent, the spare bedroom
In London, having a spare bedroom feels like a bit of a luxury (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)
Tessa, Muswell Hill what i rent - tess and dan's room
Tessa and Rob’s room (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)
Tess and Rob Muswell Hill what I rent
The ceiling windows provide loads of light (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)
Tessa, Muswell Hill
That’s handy for all their plants (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)
Muswell Hill Tessa and Rob what i rent - the bathroom
Finally, the bathroom (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)
toiletries in the bathroom of Tess and Rob, What I Rent
Yes, that is a beard shampoo you can spy (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)
Tessa, Muswell Hill what i rent
There’s the toilet (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)
Tessa, Muswell Hill - toothpaste in a basket in the bathroom
Why is there so much toothpaste? We may never know (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)
tessa and rob what I rent muswell hill - toothbrushes in the bathroom
Tessa and Rob, we say this with love: Please replace your toothbrushes (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Metro.co.uk)

What I Rent is a weekly series that’s out every Tuesday at 10am. Check back next week to have a nose around another rented property in London.

How to get involved in What I Rent

What I Rent is Metro.co.uk's weekly series that takes you inside the places in London people are renting, to give us all a better sense of what's normal and how much we should be paying.

If you fancy taking part, please email whatirent@metro.co.uk.

You'll need to have pictures taken of your kitchen, living room, bathroom, and bedroom, plus a few photos of you in your room. Make sure you get permission for your housemates!

You'll also need to be okay with sharing how much you're paying for rent, as that's pretty important.

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MORE: What I Rent: Anthony and Alison, £765 a month for a three-bedroom house in Clifton, York

Lidl is having a massive 99p sale and it’s offering some serious big brand goodness

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Lidl products that are available for 99p
Fancy a load of bargains? (Picture: Lidl)

Lidl is the supermarket of super convenience as you can get most things for a pretty sweet deal.

And now things are getting sweeter as Lidl ushers its Big 99p Event. The clue is pretty much in the name but just in case it wasn’t clear, the budget retailer is offering a sale on some big brand names, with loads of items available for just 99p.

You won’t just get Lidl-branded goods, you can expect Muller yoghurts, Rubicon, Walkers, Bird’s Eye and more.

With these great offers, you could feed the family for a few quid.

The event goes live on 1 August so mark it in your diaries as each store will have different discounts up for grabs.

Del Monte ice lolly
The sun might be gone but there’s always time for an ice lolly (Picture: Lidl)

Some of the offers are same across many Lidl stores but if there’s something you’re super keen on, you can check out your local shop online.

Go to the Lidl website and type in your postcode to see which deals are available to you.

But hurry while stocks last.

Here are our top 99p picks:

Rubicon mango
Some proper mango juice for 99p – so refreshing (Picture: Lidl)
Cod fish cakes
Four meals for less than a pound (Picture: Lidl)
Chicago deep dish pizza
Who doesn’t want cheap pizza? (Picture: Lidl)
Uncle Bens chicken fried rice
An easy work lunch (Picture: Lidl)
Muller yoghurt
Breakfast or a snack (Picture: Lidl)
Birds eye chicken breast
Skip the takeaway and just get a load of these (Picture: Lidl)

You can find all these plus more on the Lidl website.

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90-year-old woman graduates and proves it’s never too late to study

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90-year old woman graduates in Melbourne and proves it's never too late to study. Lorna Prendergast.
90-year-old Lorna graduates in Melbourne  (Picture: ABC News)

One inspiring lady has proved that you’re never too old to pursue your dreams.

Lorna Prendergast graduated from the University of Melbourne last week, at the age of 90.

The Australian received her Master of Ageing degree at the awards ceremony, accompanied by her granddaughters.

Before the graduation, Lorna received a special recognition from her lecturers and was on the only student to be mentioned by name at the start of the presentation.

Perhaps what’s even more impressive, is the fact that Lorna completed the course entirely online – defying the stereotype that older generations struggle with technology.

The former telephonist and librarian turned to academia in her late 80s, following the death of her husband Jim of 64 years. She hoped university would help her to keep going with her life.

In terms of the degree itself, it was ABC’s science show Catalyst that inspired her topic – one program showed the benefits of music for people with dementia.

90-year old woman graduates in Melbourne and proves it's never too late to study. Lorna Prendergast.
Lorna received her Masters of Aging (Picture: ABC News)

The 90-year-old told ABC: ‘I just thought “I want to know something about this”, because I’d experienced it in the nursing homes, how music helped the patients up there.’

Lorna hopes that her story will inspire other people to return to study, no matter what their age.

She said: ‘The more I know now, the more I want them to follow their dreams. Nobody is too old to sit down and say “I’m too old, I can’t do it”. There’s no such word as “can’t” in the dictionary.’

Now she has received her degree, Lorna is looking to take some time to relax before thinking about what to do next.

In a recorded interview, Lorna said: ‘Well, my daughter reminded me of CS Lewis, who said that “you’re never too old to dream”, and to think of another project. And I believe that, and don’t ask me what mine is going to be, but I’m sure something will come up once I get my house in order.’

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Red wine contains an ingredient that really does relieve stress and anxiety, study says

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An illustration of a woman drinking red wine
Red wine contains the compound resveratrol (Picture: Mmuffin for Metro.co.uk)

Red wine really does help you relax, according to scientists.

You might be used to having a glass at the end of a long week but it’s not just the alcohol that lets you wind down.

It turns out that one of the ingredients can actually block enzymes linked to stress, depression and anxiety.

Scientists say that plant compound resveratrol, found in red wine, helps relieve stress in the brain.

Corticosterone is produced when the body is stressed or worried but too much stress means the hormone circulates the brain and can cause mental health problems, but in the study on mice, resveratrol helped to protect against corticosterone.

The compound has already been linked to helping to prevent heart disease.

‘Resveratrol may be an effective alternative to drugs for treating patients suffering from depression and anxiety disorders,’ said Ying Xu co-lead author and research associate professor in the Buffalo University School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences.

Of course, doctors aren’t going to start prescribing wine as an alternative to antidepressants but the research around resveratrol could be used to develop new treatments for depression and anxiety.

The study, which was also led by Xiaoxing Yin, professor at Xuzhou Medical University in China, was published on July 15 in the journal Neuropharmacology.

Drinking too much alcohol can cause harm so even if you do feel more relaxed after a glass of wine, make sure you still stick within the recommend guidelines.

The NHS says there is no ‘safe’ level of drinking but less than 14 units a week is considered low risk.

There’s three units in a large (250ml) glass of 12% ABC red wine and two in a 175ml glass.

And red wine might have some benefits but it shouldn’t be the only thing you use to relax. Things like getting enough sleep, exercising and eating well can also help.

MORE: Lidl is having a massive 99p sale and it’s offering some serious big brand goodness

MORE: What I Rent: Tessa and Rob, £1,400 a month for a two-bedroom flat in Muswell Hill

Mum criticised for daily snack boxes which let kids help themselves

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Mum with two kids, plus the snack box she made for them
Shannon has been criticised for ‘lazy parenting’ after sharing her summer snack plan online (Picture: MEN)

The six-week summer holiday requires lots of planning for parents.

One mum who prepared a ‘survival kit’ of a snack box for her kids, however, was criticised for her plans.

Shannon James created food baskets for her two sons, eight-year-old Kalem and three-year-old Theo, with plenty of options for their summer holiday.

The boxes included toffee popcorn, cookies, Babybell cheese, sweets and more.

The boxes were accompanied by a juice dispenser filled with orange squash. When Shannon showed off the boxes on Facebook, saying she would refill it every day, she was accused of ‘lazy parenting’.

Shannon has since hit back at the criticism.

Shannon James has been called a 'lazy parent' after sharing her idea for school holiday snack boxes. Pics of her Facebook post and pic of her with children Theo and Kalem
The six-week snack box that gets updated every day (Picture: MEN)

In the original post, she wrote: ‘Six-week holiday survival kit. One of the hardest times of the holidays is the kids asking for drinks/snacks every five mins so with this idea they can help themselves.

‘The baskets will be refilled every morning but once it’s gone it’s gone so hopefully this will teach them not to be too greedy and a have bit of independence.

‘Of course, this is alongside breakfast, lunch and dinner and fruit is always available for them to help themselves to.’

Other parents and Facebook users didn’t agree with letting the children decide their snacks and slammed the options available.

Shannon James with her two kids
Shannon has been called a ‘lazy parent’ after sharing her idea for school holiday snack boxes (Picture: MEN)

After being called lazy, Shannon updated the post, adding that the boys wouldn’t get the same quantity every day.

She wrote: ‘I won’t repeat myself again! I put this up to try and be helpful, never did I expect it to blow up and me being judged as “lazy parent”.

‘I filled the basket with everything I bought as an example for the photo, they will not be getting this much each day – however, yes some days they may so shoot me.

‘Also as stated below there is fruit that they are more than welcome to have and have no cap on hence why it’s not in the basket.’

Not everyone hated the idea and some parents said they’d be trying it themselves.

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Sainsbury’s launches pre-smashed avocado for your toast

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The Holy Moly smashed avocado , available at Sainsbury's
The Holy Moly smashed avocado (Picture: Holy Moly)

Avocado on toast just got a whole lot easier.

Sainsbury’s has launched pre-smashed avocado, meaning you just have to toast your bread and spread.

The Holy Moly pure smashed avocado contains two sun-ripened Hass avocados and it’s completely free from preservatives, additives, dairy, gluten, is kosher, suitable for vegans and has no added sugar.

Yes we know you could just make it yourself but if you are short on time, then it could save you the few minutes (and maybe prevent injury) you spend struggling to get the stone out of an avocado.

It avoids the avocado lottery as your pre-smahed avocado is always perfectly ripe and ready to eat.

Products like these are also great for people with disabilities who might struggle to prepare something like an avocado, giving them the independence to pick it up from the shop and enjoy it whenever they want.

Holy Moly has used revolutionary high pressure processing, usually used in juices, to keep it fresh, while preserving the taste, texture and nutrients.

You can pick it up in the pre-prepared fruit and vegetable aisle for £2.75 per 150g tub.

Holy Moly Co-Founder, Tom Walker, said: ‘We are incredibly excited to be launching our revolutionary 100% Pure Smashed Avocado into Sainsbury’s – its location in the pre-prepared fruit and veg aisle will ensure that it is easier than ever before for busy Brits to incorporate the finest quality, fresh avocado into their daily routines and enjoy all the benefits of this superfruit.’

MORE: Mum criticised for daily snack boxes which let kids help themselves

MORE: Red wine contains an ingredient that really does relieve stress and anxiety, study says

Iceland’s Slimming World chips are back in stores

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A tray of the slimming world chips from Iceland
These look tasty (Picture: Iceland)

Good news if you love chips but want to eat a healthier diet – Slimming World’s oven chips are back at Iceland.

The oven chips, which contain 104 calories per 100g, were launched in January but were only around for a few weeks.

Now the chips are on sale again – and this time they are here to stay.

The new permanent edition to Iceland’s exclusive Slimming World range cost £2.25 for a 1kg bag.

The store said they decided to bring the chips back due to popular demand and lots of requests on social media.

The chips are based on a popular Slimming World recipe to create a syn-free side, but the Iceland version is perfect for when you are short on time.

Slimming World chips, as sold at Iceland
The Slimming World chips packaging (Picture: Iceland)

Slimming World ‘syns’ are treats that are higher in calories – like biscuits, sweets and alcohol. You can still have syns while following the diet but only in very limited amounts.

Syn-free foods, like these chips, mean you can eat them without counting them towards your daily syns

Compared to other oven chips, they have less fat and fewer calories.

A bag of standard McCain Home Chips contains 260 calores and 9.0g of fat, and even a bag of 5% fat oven chips from the same brand contains 202 calories and 4.5g of fat.

The Slimming World chips are available across Iceland stores from tomorrow.

In other news, people also love these low-fat beef burgers from Marks & Spencer.

Made from 100% lean steak, this M&S burger contains 4.3g of fat per 100g – the lowest fat content of any other burger on the market.

We know what we’re having for dinner.

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MORE: Lidl is having a massive 99p sale and it’s offering some serious big brand goodness

Woman shares photo of tick bites to raise awareness of the early signs of Lyme disease

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A picture of Kate and her rash
Kate shared the photo of her rash (Picture: Kate Allen / SWNS)

A mother has shared a photo to help show the early signs of Lyme disease after she contracted the infection while out with her dog at the park.

28-year-old Kate Allen spotted raised bumps on her skin after walking through long grass in 30C heat.

Three days later it had become an expanding circular red area on both legs, with a clear centre forming a pattern – also known as a bullseye rash.

The rash spread across her thighs and caused her to become lethargic and feverish.

Kate's rash
She was bitten by a tick in the park (Picture: Kate Allen / SWNS)

Kate went to a pharmacist but they insisted she see a doctor instead, who confirmed she had been bitten by a tick.

She was then diagnosed with Lyme disease – an infectious disease caused by a bacterium named Borrelia spread by ticks.

The mum-of-three, from Leicester said: ‘I almost didn’t go doctors as it wasn’t painful but if you look up just how serious this can be I’m so so glad I did.

‘All I did was go on a family dog walk in a field – I didn’t notice straight away. That is the worrying thing. I did start to notice the bites later in the evening.

‘The symptoms began when I started to feel very tired. I had a temperature and became more forgetful than usual.’

Kate's antibiotics
She was placed on antibiotics (Picture: Kate Allen / SWNS)

Kate, who runs a caravan hire company, developed around 15 bullseye rashes, with some reaching 12 inches across.

She was given a 21-day course of antibiotics to treat the disease and stop it from spreading.

Kate decided to share a photo of her rash in order to raise awareness of the disease, and it has since been shared more than 187,000 times.

She said: ‘I would urge anyone to keep an eye on any bites as I shrugged it off only went to the pharmacist as I googled the rash and they insisted going doctors straight away.

‘I still feel very worried as the antibiotics aren’t a guarantee.

Kate wants to raise awareness
Kate now wants to raise awareness of lyme disease (Picture: Kate Allen / SWNS)

‘It’s great to see the power of social media in a positive light to spread awareness.

‘I would have never known about this until I went to the pharmacist. I’m still waiting for my next appointment for check up.’

The Lyme Disease Action charity is urging members of the public to be more vigilant in hot weather conditions as it brings the ticks above ground looking for food.

Side effects include impaired attention, judgement control, disorganisation and poor problem-solving similar symptoms to dementia and Alzheimer’s.

How to prevent Lyme disease

According to the NHS, the best way to prevent the disease is to cover skin while walking outdoors and use insect repellent on clothes and skin.

You should also do your best to tick-proof your garden and check your clothing, children and pets for ticks.

If you are worried you have contracted Lyme disease, it is important to see your GP as soon as possible so that they can diagnose you and provide you antibiotics.

A spokesperson from Lyme Disease Action said: ‘Humid weather brings the ticks above ground looking for a meal and walkers and campers need to be aware of the risk of tick bites in shaded areas and long grass.

‘The majority of UK ticks are not infected with Lyme disease, and the risk of disease can be minimised by prompt removal of the tick, without squashing the body.

‘Awareness is key, and ticks should not deter people from enjoying the outside, with all the benefits it brings.’

MORE: Sainsbury’s launches pre-smashed avocado for your toast

MORE: Mum criticised for daily snack boxes which let kids help themselves

This Glasgow gym lets you work out with your dog

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gym workout dog
AG Fitness Training is a pooch-friendly gym in Glasgow (Picture: SWNS)

One Glasgow gym has come up with the solution for the most paw-fect workout ever.

AG Fitness Training encourages gym-goers to bring their pooches to personal training sessions.

The site, which is run by Andy Graydon, claims to be the city’s first dog-friendly gym. It boasts a doggie crèche where guests can leave their four-legged friends while they workout.

Andy was inspired by the idea after getting his own dog, Darwin, a one-year-old Miniature Dachshund. He believes that clients feel more at ease in the gym and less intimidated if they have the option to bring along a furry friend.

gym that lets you workout with dog
Gym owner and dog owner Andy (Picture: SWNS)

Andy, who has owned the gym for three years, said: ‘I got my dog when he was about 12-weeks-old and he comes to the gym with me all the time.

‘I only started it because I work long hours so I didn’t want to leave him at home himself.

‘My dog is my best pal so I’d rather bring him with me.

‘I just said to my clients they can bring their dogs along and it seems to have worked.

‘I just wanted people to feel more comfortable because going to the gym can be an intimidating experience so why not have your best pal there.’

In terms of doggie day care, the gym offers a sofa and water bowls, so the canines can make themselves at home.

He said: ‘The dogs have a small play area in the gym where they can relax during the day.

‘Most of the time we have about two or three dogs in the gym but we don’t have a limit.’

dog friendly gym glasgow
Time to train (Picture: SWNS)
workout with your dog in the gym
Workout buddies (Picture: SWNS)

Finlay Cameron, one of Andy’s clients, joined the gym around two years ago and frequently attends with his two-and-a-half-year-old Border Collie Midge.

He said: ‘I have been to more commercial gyms before but not something like this.

‘It’s pretty good, it works out because no one is available to look after my dog so I can bring him here.

dog workout gym
Moral support (Picture: SWNS)

‘Going to the gym can be intimidating but bringing your dog can turn it into a socialising kind of thing.’

AG Fitness Training also has a second location on West Street in Glasgow’s Southside.

MORE: Couple got married and had a dozen dogs attend with one as their best man

MORE: Mum-of-four demands woman changes dog’s name as she wants it for her unborn child

Deliveroo launches helicopter dining experience in London

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A picture of the helicopter
Fancy dinner in a helicopter? (Picture: Deliveroo)

Ever fancied having dinner way up in the sky? And no, we’re not talking aeroplane food.

Deliveroo is offering a helicopter dining experience, 1,000ft up in the air.

The food delivery service is trialling the idea in London this August, and you’ll be able to eat breakfast, lunch or dinner up in the helicopter.

Customers will depart from Battersea heliport on RooCopter One, and your chosen food will be delivered to the spot – because no, Deliveroo riders can’t fly.

The experience will last 20 minutes and you’ll be flying above London taking in all the sites.

Deliveroo is partnering with Charter-A helicopters to launch the experience, and they expect to take the idea global.

In other Deliveroo news, Sainsbury’s has announced it will now be available on Deliveroo.

The supermarket will be on the app as part of a two-month trial, and may carry on if there’s high demand.

Deliveroo riders getting ready to deliver
You’ll have your dinner delivered to you by a rider (Picture: PA)

However, it will only be available in Cambridge, Selly Oak, West Hove, Pimlico and Hornsey – so if you’re not in any of these locations, you’ll have to do your usual run to the shop.

If the launch proves successful, it may be rolled out country-wide.

All of the prices of their products will be the same – with over 50 items being added to the app.

‘With more and more shoppers looking for convenient and affordable meals delivered to their doors, our trial with Deliveroo brings our great value hot food direct to customers’ homes,’ said Clodagh Moriarty, Sainsbury’s group chief digital officer.

Of course, if you’re wanting to do a big shop you should stick to ordering your home delivery from Sainsbury’s directly.

But this is perfect for anyone who wants to make a quick sandwich and doesn’t have time to pop to the shops for bread.

MORE: Woman shares photo of tick bites to raise awareness of the early signs of Lyme disease

MORE: Mum criticised for daily snack boxes which let kids help themselves

McDonald’s is launching spicy chicken nuggets with a Tabasco dip

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The McDonald's spicy chicken nuggets
The spicy chicken nuggets (Picture: McDonald’s)

We love a McDonald’s chicken nugget but they are about to get even more interesting.

The fast food brand has released a spicy version, complete with a Tabasco dip.

The fiery new flavour has already been trialed in the U.S. and Asia and they are a permanent feature on the Australian menu, but this is the first time they’ve been sold in the UK.

The bad news is that they are only available for seven weeks so make sure you give them a try soon.

Launching at 10.30am on 7 August (don’t worry, that’s just over a week away), they come in six, nine or 20 packs.

Prices vary depending on where your branch is but they’ll cost the same as regular nuggets.

Festival goers have already had a chance to try the crispy nugs from a special van, travelling the UK this summer.

The van was Y Not festival in the Peak District last weekend and will appear at other events for the rest of the summer.

Youtuber Mark Ferris was one of the first to try the nuggets at Y Not.

Posting on Instagram, he said: ‘It may be cold at Y Not festival but Mcdonald’s uk are turning up the 🔥🔥 I’ve been given exclusive access to the new Spicy Nugget van! You will NOT be disappointed.’

If you need something to cool down after all that heat, the fast food restaurant has also changed up the McFlurry menu for the summer.

You can pick up Flake, Flake Raspberry, Malteasers, Smarties and Oreo versions right now in both the standard large and small tubs.

We’re excited.

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For cool drinks, there’s a whole iced range including frappes, frozen strawberry lemonade and a mango and pineapple ice fruit smoothie.

It Chapter 2: A new immersive experience based on Stephen King’s story to launch in Waterloo

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New immersive experience based on Stephen King's IT is coming to London
Yes, your worst nightmare is happening in real-life (Picture: REX SHUTTERSTOCK)

If you thought Stephen King’s nightmare-worthy clown was just for books and the big screen, think again.

An immersive experience based on the American author’s horror novel It is landing in London very soon.

The free show is set to coincide with the release of the sequel to the 2017 film, titled It Chapter: 2, which follows The Losers Club into adulthood.

Running at The Vaults in Waterloo, the immersive experience will invite guests to tour some of the sets from the upcoming film and will offer a sneak preview of clips. Scenes from the new movie will be recreated with strobe lighting, flashing images and headphones.

Enough to send shivers down your spine?

Nine different areas will be available for brave participants to explore, each designed to bring them into the disturbing world of Pennywise the clown – who we are guessing will make an terrifying appearance at some point.

While we don’t doubt there will be plenty of surprises in store, all designed to scare guests out of their skin, organisers are staying tight lipped on the exact details (which makes sense if it’s supposed to be scary).

The 11,000 square foot space has previously been used for other immersive experiences, including the Game of Thrones-themed dining experience, Dinner is Coming, earlier this year. 

It Chapter 2: The Vaults Experience will run for five days only, from 31 August until 4 September. More information on tickets will be available on the website on 6 August.

The second film is set to be released in the UK on 6 September and will star James McAvoy and Jessica Chastain.

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Victoria Beckham x Reebok £109 beanie costs eight times more than brand’s standard hat

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Victoria Beckham beanie
There’s a heatwave outside but we have beanies on our mind (Picture: REX)

Usually buying clothes out of season is a great time to snap up some bargains.

So the thinking is that winter clothes such as coats, scarves and hats should be significantly reduced at this time of year, right?

Not quite.

One Victoria Beckham beanie, which is available in black and white, green and black, is selling for an eye-watering £109.95.

The simple beanie with the VB and Reebok logo is part of the collection launched earlier this year.

Victoria Beckham beanie
The beanie selling for £109.95 (Picture: Reebok)

The wintry piece in question, which is part of a VB collaboration with Reebok, is 10% cashmere.

We understand you’d expect to pay a little more for cashmere but in Victoria Beckham’s full collection, you can pick up a 30% cashmere beanie for less.

The brown version from her own range obviously doesn’t have the brand logos and is a little less chunkier but it’s currently on sale for £90.

And it’s quite a bit more than than the standard Reebox beanie – the rest of the range on their website costs between £12.95 for a plain black one to £22.95 for a classics foundation beanie.

So the Victoria Beckham version costs eight times as much as a beanie without the VB name.

The basic Reebok beanie costs £12.95
The basic Reebok beanie costs £12.95 (Picture: Reebok)

Compared to other cashmere hats, the VB x Reebok one is really up there.

French Connection is currently selling a 100% cashmere wool beanie for £15. That’s nine times more cashmere than the VB product, at a £94.95 saving.

Other brands such as & Other Stories go up to the £45 mark for 100% cashmere, but it’s still a significant discount with more cashmere wool.

Naturally, it’s worth pointing out that a number of other high-end designers are also selling cashmere products for over £100, but the cashmere percentage is considerably higher.

A 100% cashmere waffle-knit beanie by Madeleine Thompson on Net-A-Porter is priced at £120 – that’s £10.05 more expensive than VB and Reebok’s offering, but 10 times the cashmere.

Victoria Beckham beanie
Another Victoria Beckham beanie has more cashmere but is selling for less (Picture: Victoria Beckham)

Baffled? Us too.

Metro.co.uk have reached out to Victoria Beckham and Reebok for comment. We will update the article accordingly.

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Marks & Spencer launches gold Percy Pig as part of its Little Shop collection

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The gold pig
You have to get all 25 to get the gold pig (Picture: M&S)

Earlier this month, Marks & Spencer launched Little Shop, to encourage children to collect all 25 tiny versions of their food products.

Little Shop features 25 of the store’s food items made into miniature collectibles for children to collect and play with over the summer, to build their very own M&S shop.

This includes tiny Percy Pigs, little prawn sandwiches and a teeny Colin the Caterpillar cake.

And now, the store has added a gold Percy Pig – and 1000 customers will be able to get their hands on it if they have purchased all 25 items.

The gold Percy Pig is based on a rare full-size golden Percy Piggy bank, which was sold in M&S earlier this year to celebrate the Chinese Year of the Pig.

A picture of the gold pig
The 26th piece in the collection (Picture: M&S)

This miniature version is just one inch tall.

The gold Percys will be hidden among other Little Shop collectables and will be delivered in secret – and no, M&S won’t know who gets one.

So, how do you go about actually getting the mini items?

Well, every customer who spends £20 or more on food will be offered a paper packet at the till, which will hold one of the 25 minis, a fact card and a joke.

And then, you can either collect the items yourself or swap with other collectors until you get the full set, at one of 70 M&S run swap shopes or through the social #mylittleshop over the summer.

So no, it’s not exactly simple and given you’d have to spend £500 to get the whole set (given you spend £20 on food per item), it’s not cheap either.

But hey, if it is your cup of tea, at least it’ll keep your kids busy this summer.

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RSPCA is looking for people to cuddle cats and rabbits

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Illustration of a woman sat on a sofa, cuddling her cat
Cuddle all the cats (Picture: Ella Byworth for Metro.co.uk)

Love animals? This could be the role for you.

RSPCA in Manchester is looking for cat cuddlers and rabbit socialisers to help out.

The charity is advertising the volunteer roles after taking in 31 cats and kittens, 49 rabbits, five mice and one hamster since it opened the Salford branch just two weeks ago.

Branch manager Susie Hughes told the Manchester Evening News: ‘As you can imagine we have had to hit the ground running with so many animals, which are desperately in need of our help.

‘We are looking for volunteers to help us care for the animals and have already filled the cat socialiser roles, as they are always the most popular, but who doesn’t want to sit and cuddle kittens all day?

‘We are also on the look out for people keen to help us with cleaning out the animals, spending time socialising the animals and end of day feeding 4pm to 6pm, which will suit people who have en early finish from work.’

Full training will be provided for the roles but obviously you need to be able to get to Salford for a weekly slot.

The RSPCA roles available

There’s six roles available with the charity:

1. Volunteer Rabbit/Small Animal Care Assistants

According to the job ad, you’ll be cleaning and feeding the rabbits, guinea pigs and other small furries.

Vacancies for Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Fridays with a start time of 9am.

2. Volunteer Rabbit Socialiser

‘Bunnies love company and many enjoy a good cheek rub or use you as a fun climbing frame delivering treats,’ the ad says.

Vacancies on Thursday, Friday, and Saturdays – 12pm until 5.30pm

3. Volunteer Cat Care Assistant

The charity says: ‘Help with the day to day running of the cattery by cleaning and feeding the moggies.’

Vacancies on Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday mornings – with a 9am start.

4. Volunteer Cat Cuddlers/Socialisers

They say: ‘Cat cuddler roles are very popular so do check if there are any left.

‘Sit and fuss feelines whilst they wait for their new homes.’

Vacancies on Monday and Wednesday afternoons – until 5.30pm.

5. Volunteer Weekend Reception Staff

Meet and greet potential adopters.

Volunteers cover a morning or afternoon on Saturdays and Sundays.

6. Volunteer Cat/Dog Home Visitors

Join the team of home visitors who head along to potential adopter’s homes to give advice to help re-home the animals from Salford/Prestwich and North and South Manchester.

If you’re nearby and keen to join, you can email  rspcamcr_salford@btconnect.com.

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