Blog Archives

Personal Training For Everybody

Sooo I have been slack on writing recently, I have no excuse, I just haven’t prioritised this. Sorry for that. I hope you’ve missed me!

This is something that I’ve been meaning to touch on for a while. My personal opinion is that everyone who is looking for results in the gym should have a Personal Trainer. Pro athletes have coaches to reach their goals, so why shouldn’t you? Don’t you deserve someone to guide you, push you and keep you accountable? I think you do! I have one (yep a Personal Trainer has a Personal Trainer! I gave some reasons why in this post https://dionstewart.wordpress.com/2012/05/02/why-i-have-a-personal-trainer/) and I can see myself continuing to do so for a long time.

In saying this though I realise that not everything is that black and white. I’m single, have pretty much no debt and no children or people dependant on me. So I can afford the one to two sessions per week with no stress. That obviously isn’t the case for everyone. There’s mortgages, kids and other responsibilities that can impact someones ability to afford Personal Training. Here’s some other options to help you out.

First up if you can go out every weekend blowing your hard earned dollars on alcohol, fast food and whatever else, maybe you need to prioritise your finances a little more. Write down exactly what you spend for a fortnight and reassess from there. Maybe cutting down on the excesses on the weekend will allow you to do one, two or three sessions of Personal Training a week? You health is worth it..

If you really cannot afford sessions every week, could you afford one every fortnight? It’ll be such a big help with keeping you on track and accountable. A Personal Trainer should give you a program to follow so you have a structured approach to training and then once a fortnight they can give you that extra push to keep you going. They should still offer you support when needed and help you with your goals.

Even still that may be a large commitment financially. How about seeing a trainer once every 4-6 weeks, paying them for a program and get them to take you through it? That way you have a program tailored to you, you’ve been shown how to do the exercises correctly and changing it every 4-6 weeks will keep your body changing and prevent you getting into a rut. I have several clients who cannot afford regular training, but see me for programs monthly instead. I will also give them a little help with nutrition along the way.

I’m going to be a little cheeky and now throw this to the other Personal Trainers out there. Have you considered offering these options to clients who cannot afford weekly sessions with you? Sure it’s not an income every week, but think about the other benefits. You offer this to someone, then when a friend asks them about the gym and Personal Training, you’ll be the first person they think of, you may then pick up a client who does the weekly session with you. So regular income coming your way! Don’t get stuck thinking you have to have just one on one clients all the time.

Hope that helps some of you a little.

Any feedback is always welcome!

D

 

Results Time

I am one happy girl!!! I’ve reached the four week mark since I returned from holidays and that means assessment time. The results have come through and my hard work has paid off.

On the 16th July here is what I was at:

Weight 70.6kgs

Skinfolds:

Bicep 19

Tricep 21

Subscapula 10

Supraillium 20

That makes my body fat percentage 31.7%

Here’s what the 13th August had to offer:

Weight 69.3kgs

Bicep 8

Tricep 18

Subscapula 14 (Yes that’s higher than before, Rob and I think he mixed the previous subscap and supra around)

Supraillium 15

Making my body fat now 25.54% boo yeah!!!

Here’s some photos to show you the difference:

Yes I’m in my underwear-get over it!!

My stomach and hips are the most noticeable in reductions. I no longer have that muffin top hanging over my jeans.

I’m very happy with these results and while it’s not lean, that’s my holiday gain gone. I’ve still got a long way to go to be where I want to be for this summer, but obviously I’m improving.

Here’s my goals for the next four weeks:

Another 3-4% body fat reduction and to get back to my 95kg deadlift (this was what I was at before the trip). I still have my sessions with Rob and we’re doing a super set phase for the next four weeks-great for strength! I have one weekend where I know I’ll be drinking (a very close friends hens day), other than that, no booze allowed! The challenge for me after that weekend is I crave crappy food for at least two days afterwards and my training always suffers. Not this time-I’m going to meal plan around it and detox afterwards to get the toxins out ASAP.

I’ll will keep you all informed on my progress over the next month!

D

Take Two On The Session That Owned Me.

Yesterday was my second attack on the kettlebell workout from last week. You can read about the first attack here. Ben joined me again and Anne decided she wanted to take this on to!

Ben and I both decided we were going for two rounds this week and we made it through. I even kept the kettlebell clean and presses in (I was going to substitute with a dumbbell to prevent those horrible bruises). This week I dropped the weight for them a little and really concentrated on form. The result? No bruises!

Next week will be round three and we are going to stick with the two rounds again, though I’ll be looking at adding some more weight on the reverse lunges, front squats and maybe the clean and press.

I’m not going to lie the two rounds is a killer, I was completely shattered by the end of this and I’m pretty sure Ben and Anne were there with me. If you are going to attempt this workout here’s a few tips:

1) Bring a workout buddy. They will get you through.

2) Don’t be  scared to drop weights, have a variety there so can easily drop them down to get through the workout. It’s harder than what it seems on paper.

3) In saying that don’t be afraid to challenge yourself and up the weights, just don’t sacrifice your form.

4) The front squats and kettlebell swings can really impact your lower back, so for this your form is super important as is weight selection.

5) If you don’t know what any exercise is or how to complete it with correct form, don’t just make it up or attempt it hoping for the best. Get someone who knows what they are doing to show you.

I’ll keep you updated next week on how we go.

D

The Session That Owned Me..

Today I decided to copy a workout from Marianne Kane. She’s one of the directors of Girls Gone Strong and has her own fitness blog, which you can follow here. This is one of those workouts where you need a partner or coach there to keep you going, so I challenged one of my 6 weeks to a 6 pack members to come down and do this with me, Ben happily took up the offer. He enjoys having any form of bragging rights over me if he ‘beats’ me in a session. Here’s the session:

1A) Dumbbell Reverse Lunges

1B) Mountain Climbers

2A) Kettlebell Front Squats

2B) Kettlebell Swings

3A) Kettlebell Clean & Press (Single Arm)

3B) Kettlebell Clean & Press (Other Arm)

4A) TRX Rows

4B) Burpees

Each set is timed, 45 seconds of work with 15 seconds rest between each, three rounds of each exercise, so six rounds in each set. Marianne completed three rounds of each set in her workout, Ben and I both agreed we’d try one round of each set, see how we felt after that and then attempt a second if we felt up to it.

Geez I’m glad we made that call. This workout was insane! Round one was hard, but easy enough to get through. The kettlebell swings really hit me in the second round and set my heart rate off destined not to come back down at all for the rest of the session. Then here comes set three, a clean and press is hard by any standards so to throw in a timed set after what we had already done was interesting. By the end of each 45 second round I was close to failure and it took every ounce of me to get that damn kettlebell in the air. The last set was where I’m became grateful to have invited Ben, having him there kept me motivated because lets face it, had I stopped the hassle I would have received from him would have been never ending.

My next goal is to complete two full rounds of the circuit then three the week after. The only change that Ben and I both agreed was a good idea was the use a dumbbell for the clean and presses. Here’s why:

 

The photo on the left is my wrist, the right is my shoulder, both are on my left arm. My left arm is the weaker out of the two so I had less control of the kettlebell and the bruises are the result. I tried a dumbbell after and it didn’t hit me anywhere so the substitute will be made, I look like I have been beaten up!

The workout hit every part of our body and took just over 30 minutes to complete. Take up the challenge and try it yourself. Even only one round is enough give you a great session.

D

Winter Is Coming…..

Yes I stole the title for this post, but who doesn’t love Game of Thrones? This post doesn’t have anything to do with dragons, wars, white walkers or my battle for a kingdom, but with something that people ask me about every winter: training while you are sick.

We are coming into winter and that means an influx of colds and flu. Ranging from a small case of the sniffles or a sore throat to full-blown body aches, headaches and fever, these can have a serious effect on your training regime. Most people I have spoken to (coworkers and gym members) seem to have the same opinion, if the infection you have is above the neck (ie sniffles, runny nose, sore throat) it is ok to train, whereas if it’s below the neck (fever and coughing up phlegm-gross) then you need to take time off.

The reasons behind the above thoughts is that if the infection is below the neck, it is closer to your heart and when you train the infection can spread to your heart. I can personally testify to this. A little over two years ago I picked up swine flu while in Indonesia. I didn’t realise it was swine flu and when I returned home I went straight back into full on training. My heart was under some serious strain, I could feel it every session almost bursting through my chest and I struggled to recover after each session. Eventually I realised this probably wasn’t a good thing and saw my doctor. I’m not kidding when I say she pretty much smacked over the head when I told her what I had been doing. My infection was so bad I had to stop training for six weeks and ended up taking two courses of antibiotics, the doctor told me that any more stress on my heart and body would probably see me end up in hospital. Not a good thing  by anyones standards.

Due to this I also take extra precaution when I get sick, even it’s above my head only. Why? Well let’s think about this.

When you’re sick your body is fighting an infection. It’s putting all of its strength into getting rid of the illness so you do not get worse. When you train you are doing something very similar to your body. You are draining it of stored energy, you are tearing your muscle fibres (yes tearing, it’s for muscle growth) and you are putting it under enormous strain. Think about how you feel after a really intense workout, somewhat similar to being sick? So if you train while you are even minorly sick you body is then trying to fight/repair two ‘infections’, it’s not designed to do this. By doing so you can end up getting worse, look at me and my swine flu-SIX WEEKS OFF! Don’t make the same mistake I did. Take the rest, take that one week off, it’s better than six.

Here’s some other things for you to consider if your still going to be one of those people who ‘just push through’:

You’re contagious and I, nor the other 300-400 people who come through the gym doors daily, want your germs. Firstly for the gym members, if you come in they can catch whatever it is you have, they may get even sicker and have to have time off training. Because of this you are directly affecting their health and fitness goals. How would you feel if someone did that to you? Now when it comes to me, if you come in and I get sick what happens? Plenty. If I need to take time off sick, I don’t get paid for those personal training sessions or classes I don’t take. So you’re affecting my income. Are you going to do my food shopping or pay my rent? Doubt it. Then there’s the clients that I would have to cancel because I don’t want to pass this illness on to them. You are then affecting their health and fitness goals, again I ask how would you feel if someone did this to you? Finally if I get sick, I do not train, refer to the story above. So you’re now affecting my health and fitness and if you know me at all, that’s not a good thing.

This winter I’m asking you one thing. If you get sick, even mildly sick, take time off from training and allow yourself to recover. If you need to go for a gentle walk do so, the fresh air would do you good and get you moving in a way that is not harmful to your body. I know that this might be hard for some to take the time off. They feel guilty for not training. But think about this long and hard, one week now or six weeks forced off with the threat of hospital in the back of your mind? If that doesn’t work then think of everyone else who you could impact by coming into the gym.

If you’re someone who trains with me privately or comes in to my classes, here’s a forewarning: If you come in with even the slightest sniffle, I’m not training you. I refuse to put that stress on your body or put myself at risk of catching it. Save yourself the hassle of debating with me on the gym floor and cancel the session. I will make it up to you later.

This all comes from a place of caring about your health.

D