Fuming, angry, just so upset this morning.

A childhood friend told me this morning she'd bought a diet plan online from a TV PT.

This made me so sad and I just wanted to swear and be all open about why that was such a stupid idea. Need to hold it back sometimes to protect others' feelings.... I mean she'd just wasted £50 on a generic diet plan.

I've got this plan on my PC too (my naughty aunt had also bought it before [grrrrrr] and forwarded it to me for professional purposes) and it's SHIT.

The big problem is that only dieticians are qualified to prescribe precise diet plans, and this is always done on an individual basis.

Here's the rough outline of the crap plan:
1,800 kcal per day for everyone, no exceptions. MUST attend gym 4-6 times a week AND do other physical exercise outside of gym several days a week. Diet is very strict with a 'cheat day' once every 12 weeks or something - EVERY morning starts with porridge and basically you eat the SAME SHIT EVERY DAY.

And in the 'rules and guidelines' the plan tells you that you have FAILED if you get sidetracked at all.

Can you see the BIIIIIIG problem?

This is a DIET. Someone else's life (eating like this is like having an eating disorder). It doesn't encourage you to change your habits, and makes you see 'healthy eating' as strenuous and boring. So... you might lose weight while you're following the plan (d'uh, who wouldn't with that amount of calories + exercise??) BUT


You'll put the weight back on as soon as you "have failed" and return to eating normally. And the lesson of the plan was?? To make losing weight a f***ing chore and to make you feel guilty if you don't follow it.

But that's not YOUR LIFE, is it?? Would you really give up all your social time to go to the gym/jogs and to prepare meals? I think (and hope) not.

I certainly wouldn't. That's pretty close to my idea of a horrible nightmare. The kind of life I wouldn't enjoy living.

The dieting mindset is 95% of the time (at least) going to results in failure.


Today I've enrolled myself on a course to study weight loss via NLP (neuro linguistic programming) and hypnosis
so that I can even better help my clients lose all the weight they want

the way through which they can keep it off for good
by changing the mindset.

There's only so many private PT clients I can have onboard, so I'm determined to spend my time wisely to be able to help more people outside of the 'inner circle'. The fat loss challenges I've ran in the past have been massively successful, so I'm going to invest in coaching more people online in the future - and focus on optimised fat loss through good nutrition and the change of mindset.

Once you learn the proper way of managing your nutrition (to HAVE a good diet overall, not to "be on" a diet, EVER), you'll never need to worry about your weight again.

If you need help with your diet, just let me know and I'll do what I can to help. The methods I use work 100% of the time, you just need to realise that you have to take responsibility, learn some shit and put it into effect.... WHILST being able to eat the foods you love.

Peace out & lots of love,


P.S. The friend said she already thinks the plan isn't going to work. Hungry straight after the first meal... *sigh* expected.

Erika Helsinki
Health & Fitness Lifestyle Coach

0789 719 7818

[[this is an email I sent today to people on my email list -- subscribe here]]


Chick full of power
Chick full of power


Jaime's a big and strong chick who always tries hard in our PT sessions (as all of them do).


Overall, she lost no weight in the past two months.


Still, today we took her body fat stats as planned (using calipers, i.e. skin fold test)... and the standard girth measurements.



+2kg muscle

-2kg fat


And a total of -7cm in measurements!!


Scales only tell you half the truth. Instead, look in the mirror and trust your clothes.


Faye’s emotional story: More calories = incredible fat loss boost

Progress so far on Faye's emotional journey:

Day 1: Body fat 32.5%, daily calories below 1,000.

Day 39: Body fat 28.7%, daily calories above 1,500.


Faye's metabolism was completely messed up when we started PT just over a month ago. She'd been consuming under 1,000 kcal per day for absolutely years, which is very unhealthy and makes the body store as much fat as it possibly can (because it thinks it's in danger of starvation).

I knew we had a big task ahead of us to completely change the way Faye eats and thinks about food - the biggest challenge for her being an emotional one, because she truly thought that anything she eats will 'make her fat'.

It's not uncommon in the world these days to have twisted views on food and alongside a twisted body image.

Faye is now on her strong road to recovery (i.e. a healthy attitude towards food). So far she's only a month into her journey, she's eating nearly double the amount of calories from what she used to, and she's lost 1,2 kg during her first month despite the increase in her calorie intake. These results are astonishing, and I've told her from the beginning that first we'll need focus on fixing her metabolism up and only after we've managed that we should start worrying about fat loss. Getting on the scales in general is forbidden.

I wasn't expecting such dramatic results - but it just goes to show that sometimes you have to eat more to lose weight. We've gradually increased her calorie intake which has at times brought her to tears ("I feel like I have to force the food down when I'm not hungry").

Faye's diet now consists of healthy real foods such as lean proteins (e.g. chicken, turkey), good fats (e.g. half an avocado a day) and different sources of fibrous carbohydrates (great for energy, e.g. wholewheat pasta). Now it's time to start looking at having treats as part of her new healthier lifestyle, which I'm sure will be another emotional struggle (how could it possibly be good for you to have things you truly enjoy every now and again and not feel guilty about it?). I've told her to stop wasting hours at the gym, and instead focus on quick, effective resistance based workouts. During our PT sessions we lift weights. Because only that will result in a beautiful, shapely body and help burn fat while she's not training.

Faye's feeling very shy about her body image still, so I'll not publish any pictures of her just yet as she doesn't feel comfortable with the idea.

If you (or any of your close ones) suffer from lack of energy, being obsessed about your body image, not knowing what to do at the gym to make workouts effective or worst of all, are used to constant dieting without lasting results, maybe it's time to do something about it.... Once and for all.

I'm over the moon for Faye for taking a positive step in her life and being on her road to recovery, a fit body and mind. Girl, you rock xxx


/Erika Helsinki


Emma S. testimonial (personal training with Erika Helsinki)


Emma S.


Your specific weight/fitness/lifestyle related goals when you started: 

When I started PT with Erika last year I was pretty sick of going to the gym 4 or 5 times a week and getting no results. All I did was cardio with very little resistance training, and although my diet was pretty clean I was eating a bit too much and getting nowhere (if anything I was putting weight on). I really wanted to tone up and improve my fitness but also improve the relationship with myself. I was bulimic when I was younger and so loving my body is something that I have never been particularly good at, I felt that I was at a time in my life that I needed to move past this and make some positive changes, both physically and mentally.


What have you achieved since starting your sessions with Erika? 

Since I started with Erika I have seen a lot of physical changes, I've lost just over a stone, I'm stronger than I've ever been and I feel a lot more toned. But better than any physical change are the mental ones, I'm more positive about life in general, have a better relationship with food and am even learning to love my body, slowly but surely.  The strength I have gained from Erika's training has also allowed me to progress in yoga, something which I love but have never had the strength, or confidence to improve in.


Your PT session experiences summarised: 

Over the time I've been training with Erika I've learned so much!! Sessions are always varied and fun, pushing you beyond limits that you didn't even know you had! Erika's enthusiasm is also unreal, I feel completely supported and motivated not only during the sessions but also in-between times. Her advice goes beyond exercise and nutrition, even giving me fantastic advice on how to deal the writers block I had during my masters dissertation!!


Are you happy with your results? 



How has Erika helped achieve your goals?

Through constant encouragement, motivation, and support. Varying classes, and keeping exercise fun at all times. Her love of fitness and life is contagious, I'm pretty sure that with Erika as your PT it would be pretty impossible not to reach your goals!


What do you still want to achieve regarding your weight/fitness/lifestyle?

I still want to tone up and gain strength- right now, more than anything else I'd love to be able to just one pull up! (That and hold a headstand for more than two seconds in yoga!).


Would you recommend Erika Helsinki as a PT to others? Why?

No doubt about it, she is the best PT I could have hoped for!!!


Any other comments?

Erika would do anything for her clients, a truly amazing PT. I could stop there but its more than that, she is also a wonderful person who genuinely cares about each and every one of her clients. There is no way I would ever have reached my goals without her and there are no words which express how grateful I am for her help and support!

Testimonial: Jeannie (found in archives!)

Name: Jeannie H
Your specific weight/fitness/lifestyle related goals when you started: When I started with Erika I felt massively uncomfortable within my own skin, I didn't feel comfortable about my weight approximately 86 kgs maybe more, my confidence levels were very low.
Initially my goals were simply to improve my lifestyle, lose weight and education towards food as before hand I was like a lot of people and not really thinking about what I would eat/drink. Fitness wise in the beginning main goals were to get slightly fitter to help with climbing.

What have you achieved since starting your sessions with Erika? I have achieved so much since becoming one of Erika's clients, I have lost an exceptional amount of weight over 16 kgs and still going strong. We are exceptionally close to my target weight which if I'm honest I don't think I'd of achieved anything like this accomplishment without Erika. My confidence levels have increased so much since I started, previously I was so shy that I struggled to speak to anyone I didn't know.

I feel like a completely different person and more so I look like one too. I have muscle definition and can see the progress I've made over time.

I love that now I think about what I am consuming subconsciously, it isn't hard or a chore, it doesn't feel like a diet because it isn't one. I think that's why it's so much of a success with it being a lifestyle choice rather than you cannot have that.

Your PT session experiences summarised: My PT sessions are awesome over the 18 months I've trained with Erika I've never once had the same routine, always learning new exercises and fundamentally why they are important explained to me/what muscle groups they should activate.
Erika's training style is brilliant and her enthusiasm just gives you even more of an extra push when you think you are done.
When I first started with Erika I couldn't do a simple body weight squat now I'm doing weighted squats :) This was a tremendous achievement for me.
Every week the sessions are varied which is brilliant.

How has Erika helped achieve your goals? Erika has helped me achieve my goals in many ways initially by reeducating me with regard to food and drink consumed, food shopping. Introducing me to new foods I would never of tried. Introducing me to the gym environment and resistance training, along with HIIT training as well.

Her general attitude and enthusiasm towards reaching your goals is phenomenal, she truly cares about her clients. I cannot thank her enough for changing my life so much.

I honestly wouldn't of been able to go through this on my own not because of lack of motivation but because of lack of knowledge as to what benefits you more to your goals. Erika constantly discusses the reasoning behind why you are doing things and the research behind this which fills you with more confidence and a wider knowledge base as to why it will bring you your results. Erika is constantly supporting you throughout your journey.

What do you still want to achieve regarding your weight/fitness/lifestyle? I want to reach my goal weight ideally by this summer, which is on the cards. I am so much fitter now, I am actually running the great north run this year which is one an achievement because before starting with Erika if I ran a 100 yards I would of been on the floor crying for oxygen and two an achievement because I HATE running.

I absolutely love training I miss it like crazy if I cannot train, I am now introducing more cardio due to great north run training and Erika is helping me with advice to achieve more endurance for this.

I have actual proper goals in the gym to get stronger and healthier, I love resistance training. We've been working on my limits to date and 100 kg dead lift other week was fantastic. Love seeing the changes in my strength.

Would you recommend Erika Helsinki as a PT to others? Why? Yes I would recommend Erika to others as a PT, I actually have done! I recommended Erika as a PT as she is a fantastic PT whom is 100% committed to her clients and to help them achieve their goals. She is not only there for them In the capacity of training them, she is there for them to support them in general giving much more nutritional advice than any other PT. In all honesty I wouldn't have anyone else as my PT as it's such a personal thing you have to feel comfortable with your PT, Erika's personality and enthusiasm makes you feel comfortable.

Erika's clients results speak for themselves, I've lost over 16 kgs with her, and yet gained so much confidence and much happier person than when I started. I have changed so much for the better, everyone deserves that.

Any other comments? Erika is an amazing PT that has changed my life so much for the better, it was the greatest decision to date to become one of her clients.

She is truly inspiring and inspires her clients even more so to reach their goals and achievements.

Shelley’s 5 week weight loss

5 week client progress (weight loss course with Erika Helsinki) - it just takes a bit of determination. Well done Shelley :-)


Great progress in just 5 weeks
Great progress in just 5 weeks


Fit as Hel community: Support and positivity

I'm happy to say Fit as Hel discriminate -- our community is full of inspirational people with the same goal: to lead a healthy and fit lifestyle and have support available 24/7. Everyone sometimes struggles (that's life), but if there ever comes a day someone tries to bring people down in our amazingly supportive group they get KICKED OUT straight away!

Recently I unfriended someone on Facebook who commented on Khelda's success story in a negative way - I'm not having any of that shit and will stand by my clients 100%. Khelda's done a tremendous job and is constantly & consistently putting muscle on (NOT FAT), is healthy and will never look anorexic again. She deserves nothing but praise for her efforts!

Rant over......... until someone attempts to be an utter tool again.

Erika "proud coach" Helsinki

Published in Bodyfit magazine

Recently we've had tons of requests to give out 'expert comments' for fitness magazines. Erika was mentioned in July's edition of the Bodyfit magazine -- check out these tips on how to keep fit whilst on your summer holidays :-)

Bodyfit - July 2014 Issue Erika expert comment

Testimonial: From borderline anorexic to a fit chick

Khelda's arms before
Khelda's arms before
Khelda's arms after
Khelda's arms after

Khelda used to "forget to eat" when stressed out at work, which made her worryingly skinny. Now she still gets stressed out but manages her lifestyle on a whole new level. Khelda's been my PT client for around 6 months now and she's also become a keen climber through the Fit as Hel climbing club :-).

To me it sounds ridiculous that Khelda has had two PTs before me and neither of them have told her to EAT MORE. We're upping her calories constantly so that she can actually look and feel great.... and get results from training! Also, I've banned her from doing cardio outside of high resistance classes ;-). It's all about the weights, baby. Being functionally strong. And healthy. And amazing. Let's keep sculpting that body (and add a few lean KGs in the process)!


Thank you so much Khelda for your lovely testimonial - you're the one who does all the hard work!!



"Name: Khelda S

Your specific weight/fitness/lifestyle related goals when you started personal training with Erika Helsinki: My weight was 7stone 9lbs when I started training with Erika.
I was moderately active at work up and down stairs and I walked my dog.
I was in the past an avid gym member but had not been for 18months or more and wanted to regain a more fit and healthy lifestyle. Tone my body shape.

What have you achieved since starting your sessions with Erika? Since I began my sessions I have achieved an amazing amount.
My posture and core is so much more stronger I walk head held high and with so much more confidence. My skin is glowing and I eat a huge amount more than I ever did. I enjoy healthy food I was just not eating enough . My body looks healthy no longer skeletal gaining muscle and definition. It's not the physical change it's the mental transformation the confidence to try and push yourself to do more try harder. The results speak for themselves.

Your PT session experiences summarised: My favourite day of the week !!!

Everything is bespoke to your individual need . I have learned so much regarding resistance / functional training . Erika explains everything in easy to understand language , demonstrates each task how to use the resistance machines / gym equipment and what you should feel and how to improve technique and get the best result and outcomes. I always leave exhilated and invigorated learning new things keeping motivated and fresh.

Are you happy with your results? YES YES YES

How has Erika helped achieve your goals? It's the encouragement , seeing you as an individual and listening to you. The goals set are stepping stones and Erika guides you along. The food diary and blog has been inspirational to me it aids me to look at my self retrospectively . This has been great insight to my diet and eating patterns, I love the different ways to train and it's exciting . Introducing me to new things - climbing wow as a middle aged woman stepping out of your comfort zone is terrifying now I just go for it if I fail I try again or I may not like it but I gave it a go.

What do you still want to achieve regarding your weight/fitness/lifestyle? I want to continue to gain muscle and definition . Climbing beat my green nemesis wall . Go on trying new things I am loving having more energy looking good.

Would you recommend Erika Helsinki as a PT to others? Why? Anyone looking for a PT would be insane not to want Erika. I have PT in the past and have never experienced the dedication previously. Erika is a fantastic teacher and mentor her patience and guidance has given me the the strength and confidence to keep going when times are hard. Not just the motivation in the gym and fitness but when work or life gets you down.

Any other comments? Erika is brimming with new and exciting things to keep all her clients motivated. Masterclass in Deadlifting , nutrition - recipes posts . My favourite and the one I use more than anything her community created on social media - clients helping each other through the rough patches and parsing when goals have been reached.

Erika you are a inspirational

Thank you words do not do you justice."