Posts Tagged ‘Announcements’

Joanna Helcké – What’s On 4 Me 2013 Awards Finalist

November 5, 2013

Joanna Helcké, Leicestershire

What’s On 4 Me 2013 Awards Finalist

From academic to pregnancy and postnatal fitness expert

DSC_1690 copy (5)What motivated you to start the business?

I started off life with a career in academia which explains why my title is “Dr”. Everything was ticking along quite happily until I had my first two sons within the space of 17 months – it turned my life upside down, and to be honest I found it really quite hard going.

One day a leaflet dropped through my letterbox announcing the opening of a fantastic new gym on my doorstep. I joined, started exercising regularly and my life was quite simply transformed. I suddenly felt wonderful, as if I could take on the world! This planted the seed in my mind which eventually grew into my business, Zest4lifeUK.

Tell us about your business…

Zest4lifeUK specialises in pregnancy and postnatal fitness and was born out of my desire to bring together health, wellbeing, fun and friendship for mums-to-be and new mothers. It’s all about creating social networks and providing support for mothers because it’s my firm belief that health is not just about physical fitness but also about mental wellbeing. So Zest4lifeUK offers a range of specialist pre and postnatal fitness classes which are accompanied by all sorts of social aspects, such as tea and coffee after the lessons, meals out, a breakfast club for mums-to-be and a very lively facebook page! Time and time again people tell me how important the social aspect is –exercising and socialising seem to be the perfect combination.

About three years ago I started thinking about how I could expand my business. My initial thoughts turned towards franchising but I have to confess that I’m a bit of a control freak and I would be breathing down the poor franchisees’ necks. So I decided to create an online pregnancy and postnatal fitness system which would be accessible to women everywhere and anywhere. I’ve spent that last two years working on this huge project and it is due to go live in November 2013 – I am incredibly excited about it as it will be the first of its kind in the UK.

What were the first steps you took when setting up your business?

Well of course the first thing I had to do was retrain and gain a whole series of vocational qualifications, ranging from personal training and Pilates to aquanatal and pregnancy/postnatal fitness. Part of my personal training qualification included a business module which gave me the opportunity to reflect on the business I was going to set up. We had to prepare a business plan and I remember that whilst everyone else had created a fictitious one, mine was for real! So by the time I had completed my qualifications I had a name for the company, I had purchased a domain name, I had a professionally designed logo, and I had high quality headed notepaper.

During my studies I also offered to set up a postnatal Pilates class at the college where I was studying so that I could gain hands-on experience of teaching new mums. By the time I qualified I felt ready to steam ahead with my business plan, which is exactly what I did.

Most effective marketing?

Now that my business has been going for nearly 5 years I have the pleasure of being able to let word-of-mouth do the work for me. It’s always lovely to know that you have been recommended. Having said that, this has been underpinned by years of extremely hard work and of never ever letting standards fall. Interestingly, people often say to me “Jo, you are everywhere” and I think there’s a really important lesson to learn from this comment: successful marketing is cumulative and people will eventually come to you when they have heard enough about you and seen you in many different arena. I give talks for the NHS, I write for local magazines, I get myself into the local newspapers, I support many local business and they in turn support me, I organise charity events and, above all, I remember everybody who I have ever taught and when I bump into people – which is all the time – I chat. A lot.

With the forthcoming launch of my online pregnancy and postnatal system I now have to take marketing into a completely new sphere: a national sphere. Scary but exciting!

What has been your biggest challenge?

There is no doubt in my mind that the biggest challenges are yet to come. The shift from local to national is enormous and feels daunting, yet at the same time incredibly exciting. I was giving a talk last week and I commented that it feels as though I am standing at the very bottom of Mount Everest looking upwards and, boy is it high! In answer someone said “Jo, you just don’t realise how high you have climbed because the peaks are up in the clouds”. I like that!

What do you most love about running my own business?

It would be far quicker for me to answer the question “What don’t you enjoy about running your own business?” because I quite simply adore what I do. Teaching  mums-to-be and new mothers makes me happy, whilst developing my national online fitness system gives me a huge buzz of excitement and anticipation.

What advice would you offer to others?

Choose to work in a field that you are passionate about because people will always sense genuine enthusiasm and will be drawn to you and your business.

What is your business philosophy

Always exceed your clients’ expectations by going the extra mile or two. Aim to delight.

Joanna Helcké on Facebook

Joanna Helcké on Twitter

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What’s On 4 Me 2013 Awards Nominee – Lewis Denny, Northumberland

September 11, 2013

All Awards nominees are given the opportunity to showcase their great work on our Blog.  So, remember to Sign up for our Blog to hear news of other nominees coming shortly!

(To add your blog – email


Lewis Denny is a singer, DJ, event host, radio presenter & most of all, a charity fundraiser only at the age of 17.

Currently studying performing arts at the Sage Academy of Performing Arts, Lewis has gained a number of achievements & opportunities, one of them being that he carried the Olympic Torch in Alnwick, Northumberland and lit the cauldron in Alnwick Castle. Lewis was nominated through Northumberland County Council.

Since then, Lewis has been invloved in a number of great opportunities including performing for holiday company Park Resorts, dancing for chart topper ‘Plan B’ on his tour in Newcastle, and performing at a number of charity events, pub/clubs, OAP homes and many other functions & events in & around the area.

Being involved with What’s On 4 Me is going great so far and I want to wish everyone a massive good luck in the voting stages!

Lewis 🙂

Lewis Denny has been nominated in the category Best Entertainment, Celebration or Event Provider AND in the category of Volunteer of the Year. To vote for Lewis please visit the What’s On 4 Me Awards website and click the Voting Link.

If you want to keep updated and find out how to attend our glittering Awards Ceremony at Earls Court in November, as part of the Ideal Home Show at Xmas, then add your details here

Childcare Costs now make it Unaffordable For Most Mums To Return To Work ~ What’s On 4 have a Brand New Solution…!

January 17, 2013

What’s On 4 brings you the opportunity to run your own work-from-home business with the Award Winning “junior” What’s On 4 websites and Baby Expo Events,, and

Franchise Profile (2)With recent news of childcare costs being prohibitive to mothers being able to go out to work, it will be welcome news to many mums that What’s On 4 have now launched their regional businesses for mums to work-from-home!  The opportunities are ideal for mums looking to get back into work and running a business from home.

Marilyn Bradshaw and Bev O’Sullivan are leading the way in creating flexible working opportunities for mums across the UK by expanding the very successful What’s On 4 brand of websites!

Our family of What’s On 4 websites has been bringing information about local activities, clubs, classes and events, catering for all age groups from newborns to over-60’s, for over seven years now, since their creation 7 years ago by What’s On 4 founder Sam Willoughby.

Now with over 75,000 visitors each month to our What’s On 4 sites, over 50,000 subscribers, and over 50,000 social media fans, these websites are immensely popular with adults, parents, grandparents and carers.  What’s more is that these businesses are about to be launched as regional businesses across the UK.

As working mums themselves, Marilyn and Bev understand the need for home-based business opportunities and this is a major driving force for them.  Marilyn has two boys under the age of six and in the past 2 years has already taken the UK by storm with What’s On 4 Me ( – the adult “arm” of the websites.  As Master Franchisee she has provided many mums with part-time, flexible working opportunities.

Baby Expo LogoMarilyn says “Being a mum and running a National business from home is the most perfect combination I could imagine.  Having already developed 12 local business owners across the UK for What’s On 4 Me I am completely driven to do the same for our What’s On 4 “Juniors” business. These opportunities give the flexible working arrangement that many families need these days.”

Joining forces with Bev O’Sullivan, mum of three children under 10, means that they can quickly expand the “Junior” websites, and, including the extremely successful and popular BabyExpo Events to create these desperately needed work-from-home opportunities.

Marilyn Accepting AwardBev says “Since coming on board with the What’s On 4 Team by running South Yorkshire What’s On 4 Me, my work life balance has changed dramatically for the better.  To now be able to run the children’s side of the business of What’s On 4 gives me the unique ability to also offer this lifestyle to others – and run a successful business.”

Marilyn and Bev have a wealth of business accolades between them including Awards for Best New Business Idea, North East Woman Entrepreneur Finalist and Best Brand Winner to name just a handful.

What’s On 4 “Juniors” will benefit from their combined entrepreneurial spirit and business acumen and drive the growth of the What’s On 4 family of websites across the UK – creating dozens of flexible work positions all across the UK.

Interest has already been registered for many of the local What’s On 4 business regions and discussions are underway with potential candidates.

However ~ DON’T MISS OUT!! If you feel that you would like more information about running What’s On 4 in your region, including the availability and cost, then contact Marilyn Bradshaw, 0121 288 1228, for more information!

12 Steps to a Healthier 2013

January 9, 2013

Its January again and everyone is like a bull in a china shop going full steam ahead with their new year’s resolutions of Diet’s, Gym Memberships and Detox’s for the month. We think it is fantastic that so many people at once are so health conscious and are doing their upmost to make a difference to their weight and lifestyle.

However wouldn’t it be great if for once we all didn’t have to go through this crazy phase that sometimes is an “overwhelming” experience and becomes so intense that it is unsustainable and by February we’ve all had enough? We all blame ourselves when we fall off and feel like we have “failed” but it’s not our fault.

Wouldn’t it be great if we didn’t spend most of the year “on” and “off” the wagon?

We can’t spend all of our lives on a Diet, hammering the gym 5 X per week or starving ourselves.

Imagine never having the stress of being on a “Diet” ever again! But feeling well, in good shape and living a balanced lifestyle?

Now there is no “easy” route to getting fit, healthy and losing weight (unlike what so called experts have you believe) BUT there is an easier less frustrating way that can last a lifetime. Yes really!!

A “lifestyle” is the answer, a lifestyle that we create over time for the “long term”. Making positive changes that work, that are healthy and that become as normal as brushing your teeth every day. Eventually turning bad habits into occasional treats, good habits, every day habits and finally being able to find that “happy balance”.

In this blog we advise that you take 1 of these resolutions per month and spend that month only focusing and making that ONE positive change to become a habit for good. These 12 Tips will eventually create HUGE results over the next 12 months so that next January you don’t have to stress or go through all of this again.

Here it goes 12 resolutions to change your health and body shape in 2013…

  1. cokeDrink water and maximise hydration – A hydrated body is the first most important step before embarking on any type of health or weight loss kick. The human body is made up of 70% water so this vital to get right. Tip: Aim to consume 1 litre of water for every 50lbs you weigh. This will help keep you hydrated and speed up fat loss.
  2. Avoid Diet sodas and drinks – Many of us drink diet sodas because we are tricked into believing that they contain “no sugar” and are less fattening. Wrong! Diet drinks can label and market as low calories, no sugar and less fattening, HOWEVER they do not mention that they contain “Aspartame”, a chemical sweetener that is a 200 times stronger than sugar and has a devastating effect on our bodies fat levels. Tip: Avoid or reduce your fizzy drink intake by half and avoid after 12pm, replace with water. If you do drink fizzy drinks as a treat opt for full fat. 
  3. Low fat = Get fat – We would strongly advise you avoid ALL low fat products including yoghurts and sauces. The problem with low fat products today is they are marketed and labelled as less calories and fat, however the fat is stripped and replaced with the white enemy “Sugar”. Aim to only consume the full fat options if you must including full fat butter and full fat bio live natural yoghurt. Tip: Remember we need good fat to lose fat so get yours from avocados, seeds, nuts, coconuts, and oily fish, etc. 
  4. blood-sugarControl blood sugar levels – The most important action you can take for fat loss is maintain a balance in your blood sugar levels, do this by avoiding anything that contains more than 5g of sugar per serving. NOTE: Excess sugar=Excess fat gain. Simple! 
  5. Kick the Cardio – Steady state cardio such as running, X-trainer, cycling, walking and aerobics will only burn 1/5 of the amount of calories that HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) will. HIIT training is the most effective way to burn fat. Tip: Try this, 20secs of fast running or cycling followed by 20secs of recovery for 5minutes. 
  6. MRTIntroduce MRT – MRT is Metabolic resistance training. MRT is so good for fat loss today that there is nothing else as quick and effective. Why? Because it is all about boosting our natural metabolic rate (the rate our body burns calories. Tip: Create the “Afterburn” effect and burn thousands of calories for up to 24hours after this MRT workout 
  7. Get complex with your carbs – It’s time to say goodbye or dramatically reduce your intake of refined carbohydrates if you want to increase energy and decrease your waistline. These include bread, pasta, rice and white potato. Why? Because they are either heavily processed, contain wheat and gluten or cause our bodies to gain and store fat. However do not panic as Complex carbohydrates are going to be your main source or carbs and these are healthy, tasty foods such as: Sweet potatoes, butternut squash, all vegetables, grains, legumes, brown rice, quinoa and rye toast etc. Tip: Aim to consume carbohydrates on the days you work out. 
  8. Throw away the calorie calculator – Avoid living your life by calories, sins and points! It’s time to start eating when you’re hungry, stop when you are full and just think about the foods you are putting into your body. Calorie restricting and starvation diets will only lower your metabolism and we all now know what that does! Less is definitely not more. Tip: Stop looking for fat and calorie content on foods and look for wholesome natural foods and check sugar content. 
  9. Ditch the Sit-ups and Crunches – Sit ups and crunches are extremely out dated, cause lower back and neck damage as well as do nothing for your that six pack. Aim to lose fat from your tummy by eating correctly, doing MRT workouts and doing “Core” work for your tummy toning such as planks and hill climbers. Tip: Try this core workout 2-3 times per week or add into your current workout:
  10. juiceAlways eat breakfast – Yes this sounds very cliché but it is very important. Eating breakfast is like putting fuel into your car for the journey ahead, the journey being your day ahead! Skipping breakfast and not eating for hours will affect blood sugar levels and result in you craving a carb or some sugar. Your breakfast will also kick start your metabolism for the day providing it’s the right breakfast. Tip: Aim to eat breakfast within 45minutes of getting up on a morning.
  11. Not So Special K – Cereal is the quickest and tastiest breakfast for most of us with a busy lifestyle; however it is one of the most damaging foods to our health and waistline. Cereal was once nutritious as a whole grain or wheat before being highly processed through a chemical process called extrusion to make into its shapes and to make it last its sell by date of around 6-12months. Not to mention being coated in sugar or chemicals. Tip: Opt for more natural foods at breakfast time such as eggs.
  12. Get Help – Embarking on a health kick, exercise regime or Healthy eating plan is never easy on your own and requires motivation, support and expert advice. Look for a company or coach whose training principles are in health and wellbeing as well as effective fat loss. Avoid cheap companies who promise quick fixes, fad’s and promote shake diets etc. Remember it is an investment in your health!

Here’s to your success in 2013!

dave and helenlee

Helenlee Whalley & David WilkinsonLifestyle Coaching experts & Co-owners of dh fitness studio

If you require any further info or support on the above please contact us on

See our online Article for further information and inspiration for your New Year’s Resolutions

Happy New Year! Win a Goodie Bag from Yakult to welcome in 2013!

January 7, 2013

YAKULT-corporate-master-2Turn over a new leaf with Yakult!

If you’ve overindulged during the Festive period & looking to turn over a new leaf and look after yourself in 2013 read on… and ‘Love Your Gut’ www.loveyourgut.comLR_Yakult Image5 LILACa campaign organised by digestive health charities Core and the IBS Network in association with Yakult – is offering 1 lucky reader the chance to take steps towards good digestive health by supplying a ‘Love Your Gut’ Pack worth £50.

It contains: a water bottle, gym bag, sports towel, skipping rope (that counts jumps & calories burned ), baseball cap and a pedometer along with a range of ‘Love Your Gut’ goodies

Simply click on our picture and comment and “share” with your friends to have a chance to win this amazing Goodie Bag!

What’s On 4 Me 2011 Award Winner – Best Volunteering Group or Individual

November 30, 2011


  Our final What’s On 4 Me 2011 Award has been announced

Best Volunteering Group or Individual sponsored by open to groups & organisations who run volunteering activities for adults – several prizes including a Studio Experience, Artist Merchandise, a weekend package of a Hiton Hotel stay and tickets to Legoland! 

WINNER – Amy Livesey – Tynedale Rugby Club

Amy says: “I have been part of the local rugby club for over 12 years and I have been part of the coaching team for 2 seasons.

The joy I get out of seeing each player develop and grow is the best thing in the world.

We train two times a week and have a coaching squad of around eight. The three teams have had great successes and we have eight under 18 Northumberland player and nine under 15 Northumberland players

Being nominated and getting to the finalist stages has been a huge surprise. I am very thankful to all our coaches and players.”

FINALISTS – Kelly Barlow – Hyndburn Stray Dogs In Need, Karen Seafield – Sponsor of Best Volunteering Group or Individual – the sisterhood of motherhood – it’s every mum-to-be and mum’s new best friend. A site created by mums, for mums and packed full of pearls of wisdom from mums!  Brimming with fab product recommendations, top tips from like-minded yummy mummies and a relaxed chat room to swap stories about the ever undulating experience of bringing up baby, this site is definitely worth a peek.

Mumslove seeks to simplify life for busy, stylish and cool mums by offering short and snappy lists of the best products on the market from both high street brands and smaller independent boutiques. Including categories such as ‘Best Products to help sleep’, ‘Best Products to attack weaning’ and ‘General cool stuff’ to name but a few, Mumslove have scoured the net and found the hottest bits of kit that Mums LOVE! are sponsoring the What’s On 4 Me 2011 Best Volunteerin Group or Individual Award and What’s On 4 Me are delighted to join forces with to promote their indispensible advice for Parents across the UK.

See the What’s On 4 Me 2011 Awards page for news on all our Award Winners and Finalists!!


What’s On 4 Me 2011 Award Winner – Best Entertainment Activity, Day Out or Attraction

November 30, 2011


 Our fifth What’s On 4 Me 2011 Award has been announced


Best Entertainment Activity, Day Out or Attraction sponsored by REDdot Music open to clubs, groups or individuals who run regular entertainment events for adults

WINNER – KLR Psychic Agency

Karen says: “We are based in Sunderland, Tyne and Wear, I have had KLR Psychic Agency for 18 months now and we have already featured in a local magazine. I run 2 psychic events each week and a lot often include raising funds for local charities. To find out more on KLR find us on Facebook or visit our website

I am delighted to be a finalist in these awards, great news for my company and can’t believe I have reached the top three in the UK! Thanks to everyone who has voted for us!”


FINALISTS – High Road Balloons , The Acorn Theatre  

REDdot Music – Sponsor of Best Entertainment Activity, Day Out or Attraction

REDdot Studio is a part of REDdot Music Ltd. a Music production and management company with over 40 years combined experience in the music industry.

REDdot Studio is based in the leafy Market Town of Leighton Buzzard, which boasts easy travel access from the M1 and Rail services. The studio is a 10 minutes walk from the Train Station.

The Studio is run by music producer Steve Askew, who has been responsible for launching the music careers of many talented musicians, and is aided by his business partner Glenn Kelly, who has over 15 years experience in the music industry.

REDdot Music are sponsoring the What’s On 4 Me 2011 Best Entertainment Activity Award and also providing several prizes including a Studio Experience and Artist Merchandise for our Best Volunteering Group Award.

See the What’s On 4 Me 2011 Awards page for news on all our Award Winners and Finalists!!

What’s On 4 Me 2011 Award Winner – Best Activity Provider

November 30, 2011

Our third What’s On 4 Me 2011 Award has been announced

Best Activity Provider open to any club or group providing classes or activities for adults

WINNER – No Lippy Bootcamp

No Lippy Boot Camp started 2 years ago and is based in the North East with 15 venues for women and 5 venues for men. All sessions are specifically designed for the male or female body and delivered by experienced Personal Trainers.

The female sessions are designed for inch loss, weight loss, toning and improve fitness levels.

The male camps are designed for muscle definition, fat loss and improve fitness levels. Weigh and measure, nutrition and home workouts are included.

It’s not just about people getting into shape though, we are a social group and a place for people to make new friends – come see us here!   

FINALISTS: Funky Voices Choir, KL Dancesteps Ltd 


See the What’s On 4 Me 2011 Awards page for news on all our Award WInners and Finalists!!


What’s On 4 Me 2011 Award Winner – Most Outstanding Learning Tutor

November 30, 2011

Our second What’s On 4 Me 2011 Award has been announced

Most Outstanding Learning Tutor open to teachers of courses for adults

WINNER – Amanda Dixon – I Am You Ltd

Amanda says: “I am based in Low Fell Gateshead and have been teaching Social Media under my new Company, I Am You Limited for just over a year now. I am currently holding weekly Social Media Workshops at MPH Training and Conference Centre in Gateshead, together with weekly sessions at Cramlington Learning Village and am in the process of launching my new online Social Media Training platform – her are the links!  

I am absolutely chuffed to bits for being short listed as a finalist in this award, I love the fact that both the winner and runner up of this National Award for Most Outstanding Learning Tutor are based in the North East of England.”

FINALIST – Emma Campbell-Critchley – Arriba Community Weightloss 


 See the What’s On 4 Me 2011 Awards page for news on all our Award WInners and Finalists!!


What’s On 4 Me 2011 Award Winner – Most Outstanding Activity Instructor

November 30, 2011

Our first What’s On 4 Me 2011 Award has been announced

Most Outstanding Activity Instructor sponsored by Mumpreneur UK open to any individual running a group, class or activity for adults

WINNER – Louise Freezer

Louise says “I live in a small village just outside Thetford, Norfolk. I have worked in the Fitness Industry for 20 years and been teaching Zumba since Jan. 2011. I set up my own business in Feb 2011 ” Zumba Lou Lou ” and currently run 7 classes a week but will be adding to my timetable in the new year teaching speciality groups in Zumba Gold and Zumbatomic.

Being nominated for Most Outstanding Activity Instructor in the Whats On 4 Me Awards was a great honour, and then to get through to the finals was amazing. It has given my business and my confidence a real boost.”

Like my Facebook Page – Zumba Lou Lou
Tel: 07866 534087

Some comments from Lou’s nominations:  

“Lou’s classes are always lively, fun and most importantly friendly and welcoming. Lou really make sure that everyone is enjoying themselves and all ages and abilites can participate. She is an amazing mum to her little boy and is always dashing around, but always makes time for her zumba attendees! She is a very warm and caring lady and it’s a pleasure to be in her class!”

“Whilst Lou teaches many Zumba classes, she addresses everyone by name.  She makes her sessions fun and we are like one big happy family for the hour.  Her enthusiasm  and energy is infectious and you can’t help but enjoy yourself and before you know it the hour is up and you can’t wait for your next zumba class with her! Everyone is made to feel very welcome regardless of ability and she always starts her class by explaining safety to all the new comers and passes on the latest information the instructors receive (eg suitable footwear to prevent ankle/knee injuries and the pulling of muscles and she is meticulous regarding the cool down excercises at the end. Her classes are the best I’ve been to (and I have been to many over the years).  I cannot praise her enough.”

“Louise is such an amazing person- she’s inspirational. Her classes are always full of fun and laughter. People of all shapes, sizes and age attend her classes and it feels like one big family. She has an addictive personality that just lights up when she’s performing, she enables everyone to feel comfortable without feeling like they’re working out. For some people her classes are life changing.”

Mumpreneur UK is a support network for mums in business, offering advice, resources, articles and events to parents who run their own business. Flexible working can be fantastic for families with young children, and starting and running your own business is the perfect way to achieve flexible working hours.

As well as supporting and celebrating “mumpreneurs”, a mum who juggles running a business with family life, Mumpreneur UK are also keen to provide information and support for mums considering starting a business, and reach out to the public and let them know that starting a business is achievable. 

Mumpreneneur UK are sponsoring the What’s On 4 Me 2011 Most Outstanding Activity Instructor Award and What’s On 4 Me are delighted to join forces with UK Mumpreneurs to promote their businesses both regionally and nationally. 


See the What’s On 4 Me 2011 Awards page for news on all our Award Winners and Finalists!!

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