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?

Training with friends

You good? Good!

We have all been there….rolled over bleary eyed, only half awake, looked at the clock and contemplated going to gym. But that fatal thought creeps into your mind “I’m tired, I’ll go later or maybe tomorrow”. Its summer, the weathers nice, the beer is cold, motivation is low and excuses are plentiful!

A wise man once said “The road to success is paved with good intentions”.

One of the easiest ways to battle this is simple; train with friends. This could be the only motivation you need for you to get up out of bed, put those trainers on and get out the house. Here are my personal top reasons why training with friends or a partner cannot help with motivation but actually be key to developing long term habits, drive your fitness to the next level and help you in reaching all your goals.

1. Accountability

Seems obvious but how easy is it to press the snooze button again or just go home straight after work, I mean you’re tired right? However if your friends/ training partner is going to be there or you agreed to go with them then your also letting them down. It holds you accountable. It would be pretty lame if you cancelled your gym session with your friends because you wanted to go home and sit on the sofa, or because you didn’t feel like it.

Plus we know from research that those who are closest to you and have good exercise habits affect your personal motivation. Be the change you want to see in the world.

2. Motivation!

When you’re close to quitting on the bike or that last sprint, having your friend or other half there might just be the encouragement you need to get it done. When progressively overloading sometimes the weeks before can feel like a monumental effort, however seeing your friends do it might make the task that little less daunting.  Plus even if you can’t train with your friends having a common goal or challenge might help. Who can do 100 burpees in the fastest time? With social media it’s hard to escape it and easy to keep each other accountable. What’s even better is if you didn’t accomplish your goal having friends to pick you back up or simply tap you on the back can simply mean everything and stop you beating yourself up.

3. It is fun (I promise)

It makes training more fun, sometimes with the hectic lifestyle we all lead an hour of training might be the only time you get to see your friends. What an awesome way to get fit and have a laugh? Double Whammy! Plus it could change your workout routine for the better, instead of resting and looking at Instagram your rest could now be your friends working set as soon as their done you’re on, making your session more intense!

4. Fitness brings people together

We all know that after training endorphins get released making us feel pretty amazing. This is enhanced even more when we get to share that feeling surrounded by friends. That experience can help create an even better bond making friendships that bit stronger.

Also around 40% of individuals drop out of fitness shortly after they begin or attend classes on their own. But with a friend, that dropout rate decreases to 6%. You no longer feel alone and form your own group identity.

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5. Train together stay together

Cliché but there is truth to this. Studies show couples who exercise together are happier in their relationship. Working out together strengthens the relationship and enhances sexual attraction. You can’t fight the hormones!

It also means that you both understand the importance and need for a good training and exercise regime and there is no resentment of time spent at the gym. If they need to train you don’t question it because you understand the why, the passion and the commitment that lifestyle dictates.

So grab a friend or even your better half and go get some exercise done with them. If you haven’t got any friends then drop me email, I’ll come and train with you!

Big love,

Yus

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.