Tuesday, May 8th

The revolution in training goes on and some remarkable changes have happened the last few years in particular.

The return of bodyweight training, and the rise and rise of functional training (exercises that have real life meaning) has been fantastic for me, because it what i have done for many, many years and its great to see a lot of people embracing this style of training!

I spoke to an equipment supplier last week and he told me what i already thought-that steppers, cross trainers, treadmills even were on the way out, and that steppers were totally out, and on the way to joining the dinosaurs!!! A lot of companies dont even make steppers anymore!!

I have been banging on for years that these machines should not form the foundation of your training. Steppers in particular don’t offer much value in terms of results, and are an example of a machine doing a lot of the work for you, plus wasting a lot of money.

Treadmills have their place if you are forced to exercise inside, but there are a million other options thats for sure!

If you’re fed up about me talking about  medicine balls, bosu balls, swiss balls etc, then tough! This is the way you should be training for all kinds of amazing results. If you want a strong back, then this is for you. If you want a strong tight stomach, then this way of training is for you, if you want great balance, then this way will work big time for you.

Bottom line is that if you want to be fitter, stronger, better balanced and healthier in every single way, then you have to learn how to handle your own bodyweight and really “find” your body again and its true source of power. This isnt some kind of mystical thing either, its entirely possible and its about time you made it happen!!!

Thursday, 3rd May

Getting out of your comfort zone regularly when it comes to your training should be your number one priority but most people are either scared, cant be bothered or don’t know how to change the programme they initially started with the first day they were shown how to train.

This is almost a “silent killer” when it comes to progressing year after year.

Do this experiment-think of all the people you know who regularly exercise and perhaps they have been for many years.

Then think of in terms of a percentage, how many of them have actually IMPROVED year in year out over those years.

If you get 20% you would be lucky.

Then, another experiment for you to try!

If you know a couple of these people well enough to ask, then trying questioning them on how they train, and then ask them on the last time they actually changed anything substantial with their training?

I’m not talking about one or two exercises, I am talking about their speed or tempo of their workout, their rep ranges, the workout frequency, whether they just use weight, just do cardio, mix them both up, and do they do any core stability work, and what lengths do they go to in the core strengthening?

Do they use medicine balls, bosu balls, swiss balls for example, and what variations of these exercises do they use?

If you carry on with this line of questioning and they soon get agitated or fed up that you want to know, or just dismissive saying they are on the “best programme and that’s that”!!! Then you know they are becoming all defensive and they know deep down that they are now unwilling to change at this “late stage” seemingly in their “training career”.

The truth is that everyone needs to change regularly and test themselves in different ways. This not only keeps things fresh and fun, but will give you the regular results and health benefits we are all looking for!

May 1st!

Start of the month and although you may not think it, it is after all MAY!!! Wild winds and rain may be greeting us but this is, in my experience anyway, THE best month when it comes to good weather, sunshine and warmer temperatures!

You may think the rest of the summer is in front of us, and it is, but may is usually the big statement when it comes to announcing the summer to come, or at least giving us a couple of weeks of fantastic weather.

May is also the month when we realise if we have been working hard throughout the winter or not! I have been banging on here all winter long about how much you will appreciate all the hard work gone in…………..by the time may comes around and now we are finally here!

May on the opposite side of the scale is the month when people panic, go on all sorts of crazy diets and try to lose weight very quickly and this means usually TOO quickly. Faddy diets are waiting to steal your hard earned money again, a kind of a “smash and grab” situation that they are used to doing, because they know their diets are not sustainable and this is why their classes go up and down so much.

May is the perfect month for you to put in your calendar so that you can remind yourself how important it is to train all year round, and how it is virtually impossible to get to may and somehow be in shape in two weeks flat! You know it can’t happen secretly and as long as you learn this vital lesson, then you know you will improve from this day onwards.

This is what life is about, constant improvement and looking to better yourself and find ways how you can become a better version of yourself, in all sorts of ways!

Start May well and stay positive for a big summer!!

Tuesday, 24th April

If when you start an exercise programme, you are simple shown around machines and then told basically to get on with it, you need to seriously ask WHY you are paying that gym or whatever, MONEY to help get fit?!!!

Its impossible to know how to get fit after just one session, it simply cannot happen. Its like learning a new job, it takes a while before you get comfortable with the way things work and the order you do them.

Joining a gym that is just interested in your money is very much a big gamble with your health and you should seriously think about a different approach.

Okay, lets say you get over the typical approach by many gyms, and you actually get to the stage where you know what you’re doing, then how about that original programme you were given? Has it expanded at all? Have you progressed? Or are you stuck in the same old rut all the time?

This is another BIG problem i see. People are given programmes to follow, however basic, but are never told when to move on, how to move on, IF they should be moving on!! The lack of back up support is often appalling, and this is another big reason  why people quit gyms in a big way.

You could and should look to improve your programme at least every 2 weeks, some will be able to do it every week, especially if you are new to fitness and if you respond well to exercise. The programme is always fluid and will change on the individual’s response entirely in my view.

Since i train individually, i know only too well that people respond at different rates and times, and ALL of them need maximum support when they start off, and even when they may have been training for years, they constantly need new prorgrammes, fresh dietary advice and always fresh motivation!!!!

If you are not being treated as an individual, then you are being cheated and progress for you is not likely to come quick!!

Thursday, 19th April

If you are a strong exerciser, or at least you consider yourself a regular exerciser, then the next question you need to ask yourself is what you are getting out of your exercise programme.

If you do the same thing, day in day out, workout to workout, chances are that you are stuck in a rut and haven’t really improved one bit for a substantial period of time.

This may be a mad statement for someone who trains regular but in my view, staying still in life is the exact wrong thing you should be doing and you should be looking at where your progress is going to come from next, instead of accepting the status quo and leaving ambition leave your life.

If you only do cardio the whole time, and by this I mean treadmill and bike maybe, with the occasional stepper session and maybe rowing machine thrown in from time to time, you are limiting your progress.

Of course you will be doing yourself a lot of good, but there’s much more in you if you think of other things to do.

For example, if you don’t do any resistance/weight training, then you are missing out on bone density improvements, a level of hardness in your body that you have never experienced before and a ton of other benefits that you never thought existed!

If you are not doing the kind of core stability work that I always advocate on here, then you are missing out on fundamental improvements on your balance, your strength at your body’s most important point, you are missing out on greater back strength, and in fact, your spine will be a whole lot healthier due to the muscles that are supporting it becoming much, much stronger and more stable.

If you have never boxed or hit a punch bag in your life, then you probably have the misconception that you “don’t want to be like a boxer”.

The truth is that the benefits again of boxing are tenfold, and if you are interested in a tighter waist, stronger back and hips, leaner arms and shoulders, and leaner stronger legs, then you need to get boxing and soon!!!

Don’t get stuck in a rut, the old saying is that the difference between a rut and a grave is only the depth!!