Breaking Barriers to Exercise

David Bowmaker, Life Fit Chartered Physiotherapist

At this time of year many of us feel compelled to engage with exercise, perhaps following a break from regular physical activity through a busy end to the year.  That is not the case for everyone and some may have other barriers getting in the way of exercising.  I will discuss some of the barriers we commonly encounter at Life Fit and suggest some strategies to overcome them, however I think a good starting point is actually looking at why we might want to exercise in the first place.

Engaging with regular exercise can provide a wide range of general health benefits e.g. 35% reduced risk of heart disease, 50% lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes, 30% reduction in early death, 83% lower rate of osteoarthritis, 30% reduction in depression and dementia to name but a few.  Sounds good doesn’t it?

It gets better….specific benefits can be gained through targeted exercise programs to improve weight management, improve sporting performance and can be used to help overcome illness or injury. Fantastic…..imagine if one medical intervention could provide all of this?


So why wouldn’t we get started?  Why wouldn’t we just keep going?  All sounds pretty good right? If only it were that simple!  In this day and age we tend to pack our lives full which can provide time barriers to physical activity but also act as a mental barrier because we are tired so all we want to do at the end of a long busy day is chill out.  Of course, there can be other barriers such as illness or injury which can provide very specific challenges for individuals affected.  However it can be done!

If time is an issue, write things down that you need to do, including exercise (remember how important it is), allocate time required for each activity and prioritise them. Then look at a plan of a typical week and see where you might fit things in (or take things out!).

If you feel tired and think you couldn’t possibly exercise remember this: exercise gives you more energy, reduces the sense of fatigue and helps you sleep better.  Start small and feed off the energy boost that even a small amount of exercise will provide.

If you are someone who thinks “I don’t like exercise, it’s not for me” then remember that exercise doesn’t need to look (or feel) like exercise to be worthwhile.  Walking is one of the best forms of exercise we can participate in (see previous blog “Walk Before You Run”).  Park the car up a short distance from work and walk the rest. Make housework slightly more energetic by marching up the stairs, doing a couple of standing squats or knee bends between each ironing item.  Before you know it you will be significantly increasing your exercise levels and you don’t even need to put on lycra!

If you are someone who responds to encouragement from someone else, consider joining a class or if you have the means consider a personal trainer.  Having a diary appointment and making a commitment to someone else is a very good way of seeing something through.  It could, however simply be a case of writing something down and state your intentions to your nearest and dearest, or agreeing to a regular walk with a friend a couple of times per week; research shows that this alone improves peoples adherence to performing any task.

If you have a very specific barrier that may relate to your health and physical ability then seek professional support.  Life Fit Wellness is set up to provide this type of professional support through the team of Chartered Physiotherapists, Clinical Dietitian, Clinical Psychologist and Exercise Professionals.  Across the team we have vast experience in assisting people in engaging with exercise for a healthier lifestyle…it’s what we do!  There are lots of options to suit each individual ranging from 1-to-1 exercise and rehabilitation sessions to small groups classes such as Pilates, Yoga and other bespoke classes.  Our Team are always happy to discuss your exercise and health needs and assist you in your journey.

So whatever you feel the barrier is, get started, get going and keep going with Life Fit.

Find out more ways to assist in Breaking Barriers to Exercise in this presentation:

Burns Night Celebrations at Findlays

Fair fa’ your honest, sonsie face, Great Chieftain o’ the Puddin-race!

This year saw another fantastic Burns Supper at Findlays within Falkirk Business Hub on Thursday 25th January.  It certainly was the perfect way to warm up after the recent snow and those who were lucky enough to snap up a ticket up for this event were in for a real treat.

Findlays Burns 2018 part 2 (23 of 31)

Guests were piped into the building by Tommy Couper for a very special entrance. To celebrate Scotland’s national dish taking centre stage, the words of burns well-kent poems and an address to the Haggis was ceremonially recounted for all to hear. Having worked on a special menu, the Findlays chefs provided guests with an incredible three-course meal, starting with locally sourced haggis, neeps and tatties, followed by rich homemade steak pie served and then traditional cranachan… and of course homemade Scottish Shortbread to finish!

Entertainment was supplied by Captain Howe and Burns MC Brian Goldie with poems, songs and a mortal memory of Robert Burns. It was a fantastic night, and the food was a wonderful highlight once again.


Findlays Burns 2018 (16 of 19)


Findlays Burns 2018 (24 of 58)


The annual Burns Supper at Findlays was a night to be remembered and one we will definitely be looking forward to again next year. To find out everything going on at Findlays, check out their website here.

Walk Before You Run! 

David Bowmaker, Life Fit Wellness Co-Founder

We love running but so many people start running as an exercise but don’t actually do any walking!

Yes, obviously they can walk but they don’t use walking as an exercise. So why if you don’t walk as an exercise do you think you could and should run as an exercise? Before starting a running regime it is well worth establishing a walking regime. If you do have any physical issues you may even need to do something easier before you actually start walking as an exercise. You might have to do some basic leg strengthening, walking on the spot, or even partial body weight exercise such as swimming or cycling. You might also need to lose some weight beforehand even if losing weight is the reason you want to start exercising.

Whatever exercise you start doing you need to start gradually. Long term health is achieved only by starting regimes that are sustainable long term. If you start anything too abruptly it is likely you will not continue and therefore not achieve the objectives you set out to achieve.

If you can, start walking more on a daily basis! If you can’t, for whatever reason, go and see someone such as a physiotherapist or your GP to see if you can remove that barrier.

If you are unsteady, hold onto something, like the kitchen bench, and walk on the spot. You could walk up and down your hallway, up and down stairs or outside between lampposts.

Start gradually within your limits. Get confident that you have achieved your base goals then begin to challenge! 10 steps to 12, 5 laps to 6, 2 flights to 3 continuing to add small manageable but challenging increments. Done every day, for weeks, months and years you will be amazed by what you can achieve. To take your walking to another level you could consider Nordic Walking or with a good walking base you are now ready to take on the running challenge. Perhaps do all three and give yourself variety and options for however you feel, whatever the weather and what time you have available.

If you are a runner but have been ill (such as the flu) or injured you may be able to keep active by walking. Walking is better than doing nothing and can make you return to running quicker and easier.

Move Well, Stay Well, Live Well.

Life Fit Wellness can help, find out more about our services online now.

Charity Candles & Diffusers

For a limited time only, buy any candle and receive a free diffuser!

As many of you will already know, Falkirk Business Hub is delighted to be supporting Breast Cancer Now this year. They are Scotland’s leading charity dedicated to stopping women dying from breast cancer, with an aim that by 2050, no one will die from breast cancer.

Breast Cancer Now was selected in support of local young woman Mandie Stevenson who has terminal breast cancer.

Continuing our year support, we have been are delighted to have a very special offer for our beautiful candles.

Mandie is an inspirational woman, determined to raise the profile of the importance of checking your breasts and raising funds for invaluable cancer research.  Mandie is also very keen to make sure that everyone goes out and makes the most of every minute!  She has been writing a column in the Falkirk Herald to share her views, which, inspired by her Pug Frank is entitled Perfectly Frank!

The Perfectly Frank products have been generously hand-crafted and donated by Larbert based company Candle Shack, so every penny of the sale price will be donated to charity.

peony candle and diffuser

Each scent comes in a luxury candle or reed diffuser style. The candles are 220gm each with a 40-50 hour burn time.

Each 100ml  diffuser offers an excellent alternative for home fragrancing where candles are not practical.  Lasting for up to 6 weeks, the diffusers can be used to fragrance hallways, bathrooms and children’s  rooms without the worry of a naked flame.

Each product is £20 – with the full amount being donated to charity.  The candles and diffusers are on sale at Falkirk Business Hub reception, but for a limited time only, receive a free diffuser with every candle purchase.  Payment is by cash only please – we have a limited supply of these products, so pop in and see our Hosts from 8am-9pm Monday-Thursday, 8am-7pm on Friday and 9am-5pm on Saturday to pick up your products and make your contribution to Breast Cancer Now.

Breast Cancer Now fund cutting-edge research into the disease in Scotland, collaborating with the brightest researchers and foremost organisations from around the world. In Scotland the charity support 21 scientists, working on research projects in locations such as Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Stirling.  You can find out more about Breast Cancer Now on their website.

Thank you for your continued support.

World Famous Pilates Instructor Teaches New Course at Life Fit

The Life Fit team were delighted to welcome Michael King, world-renowned Pilates instructor this January to teach a brand new course.  The Kick Start 2018 Course held by Michael King at Falkirk Business Hub aims to ‘motivate and educate by bringing the latest research and techniques to enhance your Pilates method’.

Michael King is regarded as the leading presenter and trainer in both Fitness and Pilates with 2018 being his 40th year teaching Pilates. He was co-founding director of the Pilates Institute in London and now co-owner of his own training school, Michael King Pilates along with Malcolm Muirhead. Michael’s training programmes are now taught in over 30 countries worldwide and he has been instrumental in the development of national and international standards in the industry.

The Kick Start 2018 Course was taught in the custom-built pilates studio at Life Fit studio and has been devised and taught by Michael himself with the objective of motivating and educating through the latest research and Pilates techniques. 17 Pilates enthusiasts were lucky enough to attend the sold out course.

Pilates is a system of exercise created by Joseph Hubertus Pilates in the 1920’s. A full body programme with a mind/ body emphasis. Focus is placed on controlled movements performed in a fluid and balanced way to improve strength, mobility, flexibility, and coordination when practiced regularly.

David Bowmaker, co-founder of Life Fit Wellness at The Falkirk Business Hub, said: “It’s a real privilege to welcome Michael King to the Falkirk Business Hub and Life Fit Wellness. He’s an inspiration to the yoga and Pilates communities worldwide and continues to pave the way with his revolutionary courses and workshops.”

Kenith Munro, Manager for the Falkirk Business Hub, added: “This is a real coup for Life Fit Wellness and testament to their reputation as a leading physiotherapy and fitness Centre.  Michael is a world-renowned Pilates instructor recognised for his techniques and this is an extremely unique opportunity for people to meet him and learn from his teachings.”

Photography by Whyler Photos of Stirling - 01786 474340

To find out more about the services offered at Life Fit, visit the website here.


Is it time for your business to make use of Falkirk Business Hub?

Running your own business can be extremely challenging; however, Falkirk Business Hub provides a range of services to local business people across central Scotland to help ease these difficulties.

With a range of meeting spaces, business community and our spacious coworking lounge, The Hub can help you overcome the challenges of your business. Keep on reading to find out the four main reasons to come down to The Hub:

1. You’re tired of trailing round coffee shops

Understandably, people often find that the distractions at home minimises their productivity and working elsewhere is a lot more favourable, so often you find yourself opting to take time away from home and work in a local café or coffee shop.

However, the noise of a busy coffee shop isn’t always the best working environment. The background music along with the barista calling out customers’ names over the constant chatter of coffee lovers is bound to keep you distracted from your work and the size of the table isn’t always conducive to juggling your laptop, paperwork and your coffee!

The temperamental slow internet connection also can’t be anyone’s best friend, and will no doubt minimise efficiency of whatever kind of work you do.

What you need: A spacious desk with reliable wifi without the challenges and distractions of coffee shop surfing.

The HubLounge provides coworking facilities for local business people and you are able to join as a “pay as you go” or monthly member.


2. You need a meeting space to meet with your clients

Meeting with a client in person allows you to build a more personal relationship opposed to email or telephone communication. This in turn will lead to increased client satisfaction and customer retention. Often small business owners struggle to find a good venue to meet with clients which presents a professional approach.

What you need: A private meeting room with equipment for visual presentations in addition to reliable internet connection.

Falkirk Business Hub has a range of meeting rooms available to hire for up to 59 people. We also have small rooms available by the hour which comfortably accommodate 2 people – if you simply need a quiet professional space to meet.


3. You wish to have your own office space

Your business is expanding – what was once a lone venture has grown to become a small business with a few members of staff. If your business is thriving, working at home or in a coffee shop isn’t ideal. You need a space where you can all come together and work comfortably with one another.

What you need: A small office space that allows you to work all together and collectively share ideas.

Falkirk Business Hub has 50 serviced office suites over three floors in a variety of sizes. We have over 35 businesses at The Hub and are currently fully occupied however our flexible agreements mean that we often have space become available. Get in touch to find out more, arrange a viewing or join our waiting list.  Or come and view our HubLounge and consider our corporate membership, where all your colleagues can work on a flexible basis.

office space

4. You need a venue to host your business event

If you’re looking for a space to host an upcoming event for your business and holding it in a crowded restaurant with poor lights and sound systems doesn’t sound attractive then the The Hub has a solution!

What you need: A large space where you can host an event to network with your clients.

The HubLounge is our coworking space which can also be easily converted to accommodate seminars or events for up to 59 people. With a wall mounted 50 inch flat screen television that can also be connected via HMDI or USB to a laptop, sonos sound system and flexible layout, the HubLounge is ideal for presentations, exhibitions, drinks receptions or special events.

sls mandy event 2

The Falkirk Herald Business Awards 2017

Business Personality of the Year accolade for Alistair Campbell

Our very own Alistair Campbell has been awarded Business Personality of the Year at The Falkirk Herald Business Awards for 2017.

Aimed at acknowledging the achievements of those who have helped support Falkirk’s economic growth, Alistair received the award for his contribution to the Falkirk business community. Whilst Alistair prefers to shy away from publicity, we couldn’t let this award go un-noticed.

Whilst he has been in the press recently for unveiling a potential £50m regeneration masterplan for Falkirk Town Centre aimed at providing a new civic and arts centre, public image017.editplaza, hotel, commercial and residential development next to Grahamston railway station but his achievements go much further back.

Alistair left Falkirk High School and trained as a quantity surveyor working for Falkirk architects Wilson & Wilson before eventually joining his family’s successful plumbing firm, George Campbell & Sons in 1973. Instead of renovating flats for other people, Alistair steered the business into property investment and that’s where it all began.

Bellair (Scotland) Ltd was set up in 1976 and, 41 years later, its still going strong with Alistair very much at the helm with his son Colin Campbell and director Crawford Geddes now actively involved in taking the business forward.

Over the years, Bellair has been involved in innovative work which has included retail units and flats in Bank Street, Falkirk; Lochlands Industrial Estate, Larbert; The Hub, Grangemouth; and most recently, The Business Hub in Falkirk’s landmark former post office building. Last year, Alistair received his OBE for his services to the economy and town centre regeneration.

We would also like to say congratulations to another member of the Falkirk Business Hub, Findlays café who took the award of Best Start-Up Business. Well done to Fiona and Scott and the whole Findlays team on this fantastic award and we are sure 2018 will continue to be even bigger and better!

Fiona Henderson from Findlays said: ‘To be nominated as a finalist at the prestigious Falkirk Herald Business Awards was one thing, but to win it, wow! We would not have been able to win this amazing award without our hard working and committed team. This award is for everyone at Findlays.’

Falkirk Business Awards - Findlays Cafe

Alistair, said: “It was a real privilege to receive this award, I’d like to thank the Falkirk Herald and everyone who has supported Bellair in business and the community throughout the years. It was superb to also see Fiona and Scott win an award for Findlays, it’s testament to their passion for business and the contribution they make to the Community and Hub, they’ve built up a fantastic business which continues to grow from strength to strength.”

No Barriers to Success

Colin Campbell, 31, is director at property investment and development company Bellair, owner of Falkirk Business Hub. Here he tells how he overcame dyslexia to achieve academic success and forge a highly successful career.


‘An assessment of his intellectual ability shows that he is an individual with a superior to high average intellectual ability’

This is not the opening line of a recent dyslexia assessment that I was expecting.  But why was it not?  I am a double masters graduate, director of my own property company and have acted on over £700m worth of real estate deals. The rest of the report is more along the lines of my understanding of dyslexia: significant weaknesses in short term auditory and working memories, mild but still significant difficulty with reading, weakness in fine motor coordination and the rapid procession of visual information.

This all makes sense now but back at school I couldn’t understand why my classmates were getting better results than me, even though I knew I was just as intelligent as them. Even now after having achieved what I have, I can still remember how much it hurt when my Primary 3 teacher dismissed me as “thick”. I was struggling to read, write and spell; she informed my parents that I’d be lucky to leave school with any qualifications.

Thankfully my parents and the school stepped in and pushed hard to find out what was going wrong. It turned out I had dyslexia.

At first I was extremely upset, I was different to everyone else in my class and was being sent to learning support. But this was the life changing step that happened, learning support was where I learnt how to study and overcome my dyslexia. Rather than being written off, I had learning support teachers telling me that I could achieve if I put the hard work in.

I ended up leaving school with six Highers and two advanced Highers plus a place at St Andrews University to study Medieval History. So much for leaving with nothing!

I graduated with an MA (Hons) from St Andrews but could have chosen something less challenging for someone with dyslexia; the constant volume of reading and absorption of information was difficult. I find it a lot easier to work with numbers, but I wanted to study a subject that really interested me. I truly believe the study techniques I learnt at school helped as I could break down a difficult subject and process the information.

Once I finished at St Andrews I completed a MSc in Real Estate that enabled me to get into the Real Estate industry, my long-term goal. After finishing my education I joined the graduate programme at JLL, a professional services firm specialising in property.  Working in the Capital Markets team as a Chartered Surveyor was ultimately what I wanted to do and I thrived on the challenges the role provided.  I was in an environment where I could succeed and by the time I left, I’d been involved in over £700m worth of property deals.

I can look back now and take a lot of pride in what I have achieved so far, especially when others had written me off at such a young age.  They weren’t prepared to take the time to invest in me and I’d simply been written off.  All too often dyslexia is undiagnosed for many years yet it’s not intellect that’s the barrier.  For instance, my father only recently discovered he has dyslexia, he left school with a few qualifications, never went to university, but was recently awarded an OBE for services to the economy and town centre regeneration.

My advice to anyone with dyslexia is simple: use those who have put you down to motivate you, find the right study method that suits you – this is where Dyslexia Scotland can help – and follow the degree or career that interests you, it makes the challenges a lot easier to overcome. Finally, don’t expect anyone to do the hard work for you.

People are often surprised when I say dyslexia has been a positive influence in my life, but I’m who I am today because of it.  Dyslexia gave me the drive and determination.

DS logo

Cathy Magee, Chief Executive of Dyslexia Scotland added:

“Colin’s success story is really inspiring and his words of advice are very wise. As Colin has outlined, all too often young people with dyslexia are written off at school if their teachers fail to understand what is needed to help support them to overcome their difficulties and build on their strengths.

“As tenants in Wallace House one of Bellair’s properties, Dyslexia Scotland has witnessed Colin’s considerable skills and strengths in property management.

“We provide help, advice and information to anyone with dyslexia and those who support them including teachers, parents and employers, in order to inspire and enable people of all ages to reach their potential.  For further information, you can contact our Helpline, visit our new Dyslexia Unwrapped website for dyslexic young people or, look at our new online training modules or Addressing Dyslexia Toolkit for teachers.”





Friday 22 Dec:      8 am – 6 pm

Saturday 23 Dec: 9 am – 5 pm


Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, Boxing Day : Closed

Wednesday 27 Dec –  Friday 29 Dec: 8 am – 6 pm

Saturday 30 Dec: 9 am – 5 pm


Hogmanay, New Year’s Day, 2 Jan: Closed

Normal hours resume: Wednesday 3 January



Tenant Tuesday: Select Investment Managers

Select Inv Mgrs

Select Investment Managers are based within The Hub in addition to another four offices in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Livingston and Stirling.

The team at Select are experienced financial advisers who provide face to face financial planning for both individual and corporate clients throughout Scotland. Specialisations include pensions, savings & investments, estate planning and protection.

Financial planning can be of upmost importance to people, especially those with investments or assets. From minimising inheritance tax to effective management of pension plans, Select offer a range of services. The following are areas which they identify where financial planning can be particularly beneficial:


Many people have savings account paying negligible interest, so in essence their money is depreciating as prices rise. Expert advice from the team in Falkirk, or at one of the other offices, can help to manage savings.  The recommendations made for each client’s savings depend on their own personal circumstances but they can be influenced by several factors including:

–          Salary and income levels

–          Frequency of withdrawal

–          Willingness to transfer funds


From salary and dividends to inheritances and trusts, income can take many different forms. With these different types of income, tax can become very confusing and people may struggle to get their head round it.

Family security

As well as life insurance, Select Investment Managers can help answer any questions surrounding your family’s security. Are there any particularly tax-efficient ways to dispose of your estate?  Do you have relevant and appropriate policies in place? The team at Select can help you answer these questions!


These are financial commitments that often require expert management to help maximise potential returns they can bring.

Retirement planning

With the state pension being increasingly modest and the age which people can claim gradually rising it is important for individuals to consider other ways to plan for their retirement. This includes buy-to-let properties or other investment vehicles which are often popular options when saving for retirement.

A regular pension review can ensure that the most suitable path is being taken in terms of risk and rates of return for each of the organisations clients. Those who will soon be reaching retirement, or are thinking to the future, can meet with a financial adviser in person and discuss the best options available.

Equity Release

Should you unlock the equity in your home?

You may be wondering what equity release is, so Select Investment Managers explain: Equity release describes the process of generating cash from an owned property, releasing one or more tax-free cash lump sums that can be spent on practically anything. There is no impact on an owner-occupier’s ability to continue living in the property, although equity release will obviously reduce the value of any future inheritance left to descendants. Nevertheless, equity release can help people to remain in a property they otherwise couldn’t afford to continue living in; it can also help with everything from clearing historic debts to fully enjoying retirement.

Most homeowners will gradually build up equity in their properties while living there. From rising house prices to the capital repayments made on mortgage policies, the amount of debt secured on a property should decline with every passing year. This increases the level of equity provided by ownership of the property, even though this potential is often inaccessible – tied up in bricks and mortar.

Select Investment Managers understand that the decision about whether equity release is right for you is an important one, as such we will refer you to an expert. It involves a variety of considerations, from the impact on inheritances through to an analysis of current cash flow levels and our advisers appreciate that equity release may not be the right solution for everyone.

Meet with an advisor

If you would like more information on any of the services available, then you can arrange to meet with a financial advisor here. You can meet with them at the location most convenient to you by just answering a few quick questions.

Get in touch

You can get in touch with the team by filling out their contact form on this link.