100 reps of madness!

Earlier this year my good friend Dan and I decided to embark on a 100-repetition challenge. The only catch? Once you pick the bar up, you can’t put it down! I decided I would aim to complete 100 reverse back rack lunges at 100kg and Dan would target 100 back squats at 100kg.  I bet you’re asking why? I ask myself this every week when training for this arduous task!

The answer is simple – there is no point. But it keeps us super motivated and keeps us excited about training and coming into the gym each day. I’ve talked about how important training with friends is and luckily I have Dan to embark on this challenge as well. If I had to go in every week to punish myself under 100kg on my own I would just crumble and flake off this goal.

Every week we get together and hit 100 reps in a multitude of varieties with our aim to see if we can go unbroken by the end of January 2019.  Some examples of our workouts might be completing reps every minute on the minute (EMOM) such as 10 reps for 10mins, another being 15 reps then hold the bar on the back rack for 1min and perform another 15 reps then rest 1min until 100 reps complete. The hardest version to date has to be 21 down to 1 lunges/squats with 21 down to 1 calories on the assault bike (so 21 lunges/squats 21 cals 20 lunges/squats 20 cals… etc). Yuk! When you’re cramping mid set you know your pushing hard.

Would I recommend this challenge to everyone… probably not. However I do recommend setting yourself a challenge even if that challenge seems miles out of reach. If it keeps you on track and gives you a purpose then yes, go for it.

“If you set your goals ridiculously high and it’s a failure, you will fail above everyone else’s success.” –James Cameron

Come end of January we will see how far we have come and if this challenge was achievable or complete lunacy. This will be the perfect opportunity to end some general training and get ready to specialise and focus my training again as this I’ve decided to throw myself into competing again, more on that another time!

For now get out there, set a goal and go pursue it.

Big love!

https://www.instagram.com/ypaterson/

Wasted time

How I wasted time/years

5 years ago I got out the shower and couldn’t help but notice that when looking in the mirror what was looking back at me wasn’t what I wanted to see.

Initially, don’t get me wrong, the gains were great but then despite the fact training and fitness had been semi consistent the progress I had made thereafter wasn’t amazing. (Well nothing to write home about).

That moment, for me sparked what has turned into an incredible journey so far.  I did not want to be in that situation again.

I’ve been a PT, a CrossFit coach and training for 10+ years now. I have lost count of the people I’ve seen in the gym that look pretty much exactly the same as what they did when I first started working out. No lie, the exact same! Maybe they have seen a few fluctuations here and there but a lot have done nothing more than go through the motions.

I completely get it there are those that simply just use the gym to justify their lifestyle and for some it’s much more of a part time hobby.

Cool, but for a lot more of us this is greater and you aren’t one of them.

So here is what I want you to do. Be as truthful has you can be, think about how long you’ve been training for. How many hours you’ve spent inside the gym, prepping meals thinking about the progress you want to make.

Have you been moving further away from your start point?

Are closer to where you want to be?

If not you need to consider why?  

What is going to be your spark moment?

Is it reading this?

Why is it important that girls and guys need to lift heavy

Don’t be afraid to push, keep striving to get stronger and you’ll see dramatic changes in your body and an increased rate of fat loss.  

Why girls should also lift heavy

As a coach, son and friend I have had many conversations with people about their body image and changes they want to make. One of the easiest and most effective ways to train is using resistance or weight training. Whilst it may seem complicated, confusing or down right intimidating, ask yourself this…

Do you want to look toned, sexy and lean?

Or do you want to look skinny, slender and frail?

If the answer is the former, then you should definitely be lifting weights!

Why is it important that girls and guys need to lift heavy

Let’s look at the science:

As we get older the storage of fat happens easier, this is because of a decrease in testosterone (yes ladies, you have testosterone as well!). This is a massively misunderstood hormone which we all produce and is vital to health and wellbeing. Lifting heavy will help in boosting that testosterone to some degree. So if you want to stay lean & strong, keep the curves and be athletic, then lifting weights is the way to go.

Often people think that lifting weights is down to vanity and body building but it also has other benefits. For example, as we become older our muscles and joints slowly weaken leading us to become more susceptible to injuries and falls.

So if you fancy staying healthy and happy. Then lift heavy!

In my experience working in gyms and especially in the ‘functional training’ world girls love lifting heavy (maybe more than some guys!). It’s also is amazing to see how training heavy boosts confidence and more motivation, and in this day and age that is a beautiful thing!

Same ‘ol routine

Now here is the secret….always shooting for 20-30 boring old reps of the same exercises, not really following a periodised plan gets seriously monotonous and boring. But if you give yourself goals in terms of strength then all of sudden training can become a whole lot more fun. It’s the lifting ‘heavy’ (which is relative to each person) which is absolutely KEY! We need to stress to progress and give the muscles a reason to work hard and grow!! Lifting heavy also means we can vary our training more and everyone enjoys some variety, it’s the spice of life.

Guys you are guilty too

I get this all the time – People believe that to get lean and cut then you need to lift lighter for higher reps, or even they worry if they push too hard all of sudden they will sprout gigantic muscles! Listen up, you’re not the Hulk!

Celebrities like Dwayne “The Rock” and bodybuilder Phil Heath didn’t suddenly get huge as soon as they started squatting and pressing. It honestly takes DECADES of progressive overload, specific nutrition and most importantly consistency to get to the standard most would even consider ‘big’ so there is no need to worry that you might accidentally turn into Mr Olympia J

Practical Recommendations

With all that being said, first things first you need to enjoy your training, but I truly believe the best way to go both physiologically and psychologically is to train heavy. It doesn’t matter if it’s a deadlift, a squat or a sandbag, just make sure you are not going through the motions. Push yourself to move heavier loads and you will begin to see the results.

So where to start

Try starting with 2 to 3 sessions per week focusing on compound lifts like squats, rows, deadlifts, lunges and presses. Keep most of the rep ranges in the 5 to 10 range, occasionally going a little higher and sometimes lower. Keep the total reps to approximately 30, so this might look like;

Squats – 5 sets of 6 reps and Push press 3 sets of 8 reps followed by some cardio…

Don’t be afraid to push, keep striving to get stronger and you’ll see dramatic changes in your body and an increased rate of fat loss.