21 episodes

Is it possible to drink beer and still lose weight? Fitness Coach Matt Smith and his most successful client Todd Davies discuss the most common mistakes people make when trying to lose weight, while walking you through how to go about it. You will get weekly updates on Todd's progress as he embarks on a fitness mission, all while drinking beer and leading a normal life. No tupperware containers filled with plain chicken and broccoli here! Just good advice and hopefully a good laugh too. Matt and Todd will also be discussing a different beer each week, and drinking it during the podcast - with the aim of introducing the listener (you) to some of their favourite beers

Beer N Biceps Podcast Beer N Biceps Podcast

    • Health & Fitness

Is it possible to drink beer and still lose weight? Fitness Coach Matt Smith and his most successful client Todd Davies discuss the most common mistakes people make when trying to lose weight, while walking you through how to go about it. You will get weekly updates on Todd's progress as he embarks on a fitness mission, all while drinking beer and leading a normal life. No tupperware containers filled with plain chicken and broccoli here! Just good advice and hopefully a good laugh too. Matt and Todd will also be discussing a different beer each week, and drinking it during the podcast - with the aim of introducing the listener (you) to some of their favourite beers

    Perfect Warm-Ups & Badger Beer

    Perfect Warm-Ups & Badger Beer

    In the second episode of our new-look podcast, we are discussing perfect warm-ups and drinking Badger beer. Well, we call it badger beer, but actually, the brewery is called Hall & Woodhouse brewery. We really enjoyed ourselves during this podcast, mostly thanks to the excellent beers! We're loving this 30-minute format, it's easier to listen to, and more importantly - it is a LOT quicker to perform.

    Perfect Warm-Ups

    I've changed my mind a lot about warm-ups over the years, when I started training myself I thought that they were very important. Always getting onto that Cross-trainer before a session could truly begin. After a while, I grew bored of spending 5-10 minutes per session mindlessly pedalling and started entering the gym "cold".

    This was fine, I was young, wasn't lifting heavy, and had no previous injuries. These days I walk briskly to the gym before performing multiple practice sets for a great warm-up.

    A practice set is where you perform the exercise you were planning on doing (a bench press for example) with a weight that is significantly lighter. Think about it, you are working the correct muscles required for the exercise, practising the movements, and getting a feel for the equipment.

    But there are a couple of exercises that I do add in as a warm-up, which aren't practice set exercises. For upper body, I perform face-pulls, a great exercise using a cable machine.

    For the lower body, I will perform some dumbbell goblet squats. They are light, easy to do, and they warm you up great before performing barbell squats, or deadlifts. They are crucial for perfect warm-ups.

    Badger Beers: Hall & Woodhouse Brewery

    The beers we drank in this podcast all came from the Hall & Woodhouse brewery in Dorset. The brewery was originally opened in 1777 in the village of Ansty. It was moved to Blandford St Mary in 1899 and has stayed there ever since. The beers that we tried were Golden Champion and Fursty Ferret. They also sell Furkin Fox and Golden Glory. This brewery has always been a favourite of mine, and the beers were a perfect choice for our Best of England Beers.

    Next Time

    So a nice and quick podcast on perfect warm-ups and English beer, Badger Beers are a great rival for last week's Newcastle Brown Ales. In our next episode, we will be drinking beer from Oakham Ales and discussing rest periods.

    Brand New Beer N Biceps Podcast

    Brand New Beer N Biceps Podcast

    On the 4th of June 2017, Todd and I got drunk, very drunk. The kind of drunk where you stand up after a while on shaky legs, walk outside the pub and decide to create a podcast about beer n biceps. You've probably done exactly that yourself right? What were our qualifications to do so? I knew quite a bit about fitness and nutrition after a degree in Sports Science and 7 years as a personal trainer. Todd had been my most successful client ever. Neither of us knew anything about beer except that we loved it and couldn't imagine doing a podcast without it. We started our brand new beer n biceps podcast with absolutely no idea what we were letting ourselves in for.

    Was it a success? Well yes and no. We managed to get a LOT of listeners, far more than the 20 people we had expected. But nowhere near what the big boys were hitting. Our show could be funny at times, and we like to think it was interesting, but f*****g hell was it amateur.

    Todd and I would plan it out 10 minutes before the start, randomly buy a beer on the way and then google all we could about that beer just before the show started. We made promises we didn't keep. We f****d up our live show, we f****d up our podcast in a beer shop, and some episodes we just completely forgot to promote.

    So we're doing it again, we're restarting the podcast, it's a reboot. We'll cover similar themes but in a better way. We'll be more focused, better organised, and ... Okay, I'll level with you. It took us two weeks to record our new episode 1 and already we're f*****g things up. But in a charming way right?

    Brand New Beer N Biceps Podcast

    So what is different about our new podcast format? Well instead of randomly picking beers we're following a plan. This series (8 episodes) will focus on the best of English beers. We'll be looking at Newcastle Brown ale in this episode and then Badger beers in the second. Series Two will look at the Celtic nations (Wales, Scotland, Ireland), and in the future, we'll look at Belgian, German, American etc ...

    The episodes will also be much shorter, instead of 60 minutes + we'll be trying to limit each episode to just 30 minutes. This will prevent us from waffling on too much and will help keep us more relevant. So that's what you're getting with our brand new beer n biceps podcast, so let's get cracking with episode 1.

    Training 101

    As this is a January based episode (though it'll be almost February by the time this goes live). We thought that it would be the perfect time to plan out what you are going to do WHEN you sign up for the gym. If you want success in life you've got to work for it. Avoiding difficult seeming tasks like signing up to a gym will only slow you down. We're definitely of the opinion that getting out there, putting your money where your mouth is, and removing yourself from your comfort zone is the only ways to be successful.

    Beer of the Episode: Newcastle Brown Ale

    What an excellent beer to start (or re-start) our journey with, Newcastle Brown Ale is a superb ale. It tastes great when chilled, where it is a proper session beer (you can drink loads of it) but it takes on a whole new flavour when served at almost room temperature. In Michael Jackson's Great Beer Guide, Newcastle Brown Ale is described as "the most popular bottled ale in Britain". We're not sure how accurate that is anymore. But the beer has definitely had a resurgence in popularity over the last few years.

    The beer has been around since 1927 and up until 2017 has always been brewed in Newcastle.

    Beer N Biceps Xmas Special Episode

    Beer N Biceps Xmas Special Episode

    Our last Beer N Biceps episode of the year is a xmas special where we drink Elf Juice by Bad Company and talk about the ways in which you can maintain your weight, prevent weight gain, or even lose weight over the Christmas holiday. This is not something that you need to do, and Todd and I are quite honest about why we're not going to be following the rules too strictly ourselves. But if you decide that this is the year when you don't gain weight over the holidays, then this podcast can really help you.

    Xmas Special

    This episode is quite a bit shorter than our usual ones, at a brisk 30 minutes. This was for 2 reasons: 1) We had a shorter message to share this episode, and 2) We have decided to try and keep our podcasts a little bit shorter in the future. An hour is a lot of time to perform and to ask our listeners to pay attention for that long is tough! So we have used this xmas special to try out the shorter format. Let us know whether you prefer it this way, or you enjoyed the longer episodes more.

    Xmas Special Beers

    We were drinking Elf Juice during this podcast, a beer from the Bad Company Brewery which is situated in North Yorkshire. While looking up this particular brewery (that has been operating for just 3 years) we found that Yorkshire really does seem to be becoming a hotbed for newish quality beers. You've got Saltaire Brewery which opened near Bradford in 2005, Black Sheep near Harrogate which was opened in 1992, York Brewery (1996), and Vocation Brewery in Hebdon Bridge, which we reviewed in episode six.

    While Elf Juice was surprisingly nice, it doesn't have too much competition in our opinion. Xmas special beers tend to be very overpowering, too high in alcohol, and basically a bit gimmicky (a bit like xmas special podcasts I guess). Elf Juice is guilty of all of these issues, but it seems to work in spite of this. It's too strong tasting, filled with flavours that you'd find in mulled wine, and it's a very dark looking beer. But we still enjoyed it a lot.

    Well that's about all we are going to talk about in this episode. Have a great Christmas, have a decent New Year, and we'll see you in 2018 with a brand new training program, a new-look podcast, and a whole host of awesome things planned.

    Beer N Biceps Episode 18: Looking Back on the Series

    Beer N Biceps Episode 18: Looking Back on the Series

    This episode is the last of series one, when we started out there was no plan to split the episodes up into short series (which is why series one ended up with 18 episodes). Looking back on what we have achieved so far is the focus of this episode. We'll be looking at our favourite beers over the course of the series, and what we'll be offering in series 2.

    Looking Back to the Start

    It was a Sunday afternoon and I was meeting Todd in the Duck in the Pond pub in Harrow. It's a pretty decent pub owned by a company called Ember Inns, their beer selection is fairly up and down. Sometimes they'll have some amazing beers on tap, while other times there's almost nothing. We hadn't seen each other in around 2-3 months, which was quite unusual for us. When we were in our early 20s we'd usually see each other about 6-8 times per month. But if growing old has taught me one thing, it's that socialising is a difficult thing to do.

    Friends move away, your social circle becomes fractured, and you lose touch with people. There are falling outs, and break ups that can split a group, there are an endless number of things that can affect how often you see people. As relationships grow, family becomes more of a commitment. You aren't living with your parents any more, so now you spend weekends going to visit them. Then your partner also wants to visit their parents, suddenly 15-20 of your precious 52 weekends per year are taken up.

    But there's one thing that you can say about Todd, that guy never turns down a beer if he can help it! We sat down and went through their entire beer collection in methodical fashion. At one point the bar staff themselves congratulated us on our collection of bottles and glasses. Well at least I think they were congratulating us, they definitely said "That's a lot of bottles you've got their guys, and there's only two of you?". This sounds like a compliment to me.


    While we drank we set the world to rights, well the sporting world anyway. But we also talked about beer, we made each other laugh, and we reminisced about the time Todd got in crazy shape for a personal training competition that I had entered. We also got exceedingly drunk. As we were heading off, Todd to the loving embrace of his family, me to a girlfriend who was just SUPER happy that I was 2 hours later than I had said I would be, I asked Todd something that I had asked only one person before. Whether he'd like to do a podcast with me.

    I didn't even mention the subject that I had in mind, because I was scared of rejection. But he seemed pretty excited. I casually mentioned beer, which he readily agreed with, and then I mentioned doing it on fitness. I held my breath (okay I probably didn't but allow me some artistic licence here) and he said the following, incredible words "Yeah sure, whatever the f**k you want to do it on mate sounds good to me". One day I want those words engraved on a marble statue of Todd.

    Our First Episode

    Usually, when I have a really good idea it falls flat almost immediately. I've started 3 bootcamps in my life, all of them have fallen apart in fairly spectacular fashion. The first was in Regents Park, me and a couple personal trainers decided that it would be a great way to make some extra cash. I booked a spot in the park, printed t-shirts, created flyers, and even got some media interest (two journalists and a photographer came for a photoshoot and interview).

    Traditional English Ale (TEA) by Hogs Back Brewery - Tongham, UK

    I offered the class for free to around 20 people, and turned up to session one with one of my PT buddies (the other had already quit) at 6:30am. Nobody showed up. We waited 20 minutes, then went to a Walkabout pub in Shepherds Bush to watch some...

    Beer N Biceps Episode 17: Quick Fix Diet Tricks

    Beer N Biceps Episode 17: Quick Fix Diet Tricks

    After last episode's adventures in Beer Asylum we decided to record this week's episode in the relative quietness of my flat (which worked for me as I'm incredibly lazy). We will probably record another episode at that fantastic shop in the future, but at a quieter time. This week we talked about quick fix diet tricks that you can do to lose weight, we looked at West Sixth Brewing (a Kentucky brewery), and we rank our favourite IPAs from England, Scotland, Ireland, and Wales.

    The Beer Shrine in my flat (with some embarrassing Strongbow that we don't speak of beside it)

    Quick Fix Diet Tricks

    What makes quick fix diet tricks so satisfying? Their effectiveness or their ease? Probably a combination of both, this is not something exclusive to diet either, people love hacks, tricks, and shortcuts, that can instantly make a difficult task easier. It is important that I make this clear first, quick fix diet tricks are only effective when you have the big building blocks of diet and exercise in check. These quick fix diet tricks can help you to hit your targets a little easier, but they won't work alone. But now that we've got that out of the way we can get started. So here we go:

    * Swap Cooking Oil for Cooking Spray (saves 120 calories)

    * Drain beef mince while cooking can reduce fat by up to 50% (135 calories per 100g)

    * Swapping fancy bread such as tiger bread for kingsmill (11 calories saved, but this can add up)

    * Stop buying junk food and snacks during your weekly shop - Out of sight, out of mind

    * Swap coke for diet coke (34 calories in coke, 0 calories in diet)

    * Swap JD and coke for Gin and Diet tonic (200 calories saved)

    * Learn 5-6 healthy meals and batch cook them before freezing

    * Avoid beer on Monday to Friday (unless you are doing a podcast obviously)

    Beer of the Week: West Sixth Brewing

    This week we actually looked at three different beers from a Kentucky brewery called West Sixth Brewing  which was founded in 2012. We were experiencing these beers for the first time, and had bought them from a beer delivery service called Beer52. The three beers that we tried were: an IPA, a porter, and a wheat beer.

    The porter is called "Pay it Forward Cocoa Porter" and while I enjoyed it immensely, Todd was not a fan. Not because it was a bad porter, but because he dislikes porters in general. I know what he means, they are a very unpopular beer, and a surprising choice for a Kentucky based brewery. But this porter tasted excellent and is well worth a look, strong cocoa flavours along with the standard coffee taste, not particularly thick or thin, and while I wouldn't order 2 in a row, I'd be pleased with a pint of this.

    The IPA was decent, but a bit strong (7%) and rather bitter tasting. It reminded us both of an English Pale Ale rather than the lighter American hops that make American IPAs so delicious. This was not a bad IPA but it certainly wasn't our favourite.

    The final beer (which we actually drank first) was the Lemongrass American Wheat. Which was nothing like any wheat beer we'd ever had before! A look at the website has shown that it is a "non-traditional" wheat beer, and I would describe it best as a lager-like beer ...

    Beer N Biceps Episode 16: Is the media failing fitness?

    Beer N Biceps Episode 16: Is the media failing fitness?

    This week was a bit experimental, we attempted to record our podcast episode in a beer shop/bar called Beer Asylum in Pinner. While the bar itself was incredible, we made the (naive) decision to record it at 7:30pm on a Friday night. Consequently the bar was heaving, considering we were recording off my iPhone we were reduced to shouting into it! But luckily we're still able to be heard, and you can listen to us discuss the question "is the media failing fitness?".

    Beer Asylum, Pinner

    Photo from Beer Asylum website

    I discovered this place on a Thursday morning a couple weeks ago, I had a meeting in the bank booked for 11am. Lucy (my ever patient partner) had agreed that we should check it out when it opened. I pointed out that it didn't open until 12pm and there's no chance that we'd be that long in the bank ... At 12:15 we exited Halifax and walked in.

    It was stunning. Everything you could want in a shop. There were 5 beers on draught, hundreds of German, Belgian, American, and English beers, and an incredibly knowledgeable owner called Jason who talked to me for a good 30 minutes about beer. I arranged with Jason for myself and Todd to come round and record a podcast episode here.

    Jason was even kind enough to throw one of his staff members under the bus by subjecting him to an hour of our podcast. I left that shop with 100 bottle caps (my crazy girlfriend collects them), and 5 beers. The Sweet Stout from Japanese Brewery Hitachino Nest was particularly good.

    What an incredible sight

    Yes that's right we had a guest this week, Leandros was an incredibly interesting and entertaining guest, who knows his beer (though both Todd and I blame him for our subsequent hangovers the next day). We'll definitely try and get him on another episode, hopefully at a quieter time!

    If you're in London then please give this place a visit, it is a truly unique, friendly, and entertaining place to while away a few hours. Check out their website here

    Is the media failing fitness?

    Not a week goes by where I don't sit at my desk, dumbfounded by a ridiculous headline from the media. In the episode we covered quite a few of my favourites, including: "EATING STEAK CAN INCREASE YOUR CHANCES OF DYING FROM NINE MAJOR DISEASES" from the Daily Mail. The titles are sensationalist, inaccurate, exaggerated, and too focused on the short term (without looking at the bigger picture).

    Perhaps you are thinking that bad articles are to be expected from the Daily Mail, but you wouldn't see such shoddy journalism from the Guardian. Well, in my opinion they are worse. I am aware that they have many different writers, and that not everyone is going to have the same opinion ... but let's compare two headlines from the same newspaper.



    So which is it Guardian, are you going to rail against the machismo culture in the gyms? Or are you going to encourage it? Of course, the first title is ridiculous. While there are definitely some people who have got carried away, there is no way that fitness has negatively affected the lives of more than 1% of the population.

    It's like worrying that we're reading too much, or having too many holidays. Fitness has 1000x more positives than it has negatives, and the problem is that too many people are not being encouraged to pursue it.

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