Cross-Training Over Loyalty – Maximize Your Training!

So, just the other day some of my students and I attended a workshop / seminar, that I'd like to talk about for a bit.

As is the usual, the instructor welcomed all guests at the beginning of class, including the attending Black Belts from other academies.

It was in this welcome speech that he talked about the value of cross-training; how it is an essential tool for the development of modern Jiu-Jitsu and the growth of the Jiu-Jitsu community. I could not have said it better myself!

Since I know a few of the guys that train at this school, and we're located relatively close to one another, I decided to take the guys up on the Professor's indirect offer and asked when we could come by the train, what the mat fee was, etc.

I probably do not have to tell you how surprised I was, when I was remorsefully told that the guy who just welcomed us and spoke about the value of cross training, does not actually allow cross training at his gym, or condone it from his students …

As it turns out, his idea of ​​cross-training consistors of other Black Belts coming in to help him train in preparation for tournaments. Yeah, I see the value there too, but why deny your students the same freedom of experience?

Was there a lack of genuineness to his words?

Was this just some kind of misunderstanding?

Whatever it was, it rubbed me the wrong way and sparked me to write this.

Cross-training in any sport, martial art or other mental / physical discipline is just as he said, an extremely valuable tool. I might even go so far as to say that it's essential for developing practiceers to train with students from other schools, in order to truly develop their abilities and find their own style.

It is my humble opinion, that restricting students to one teaching style and an “in-house” set of skills is simply the best way to develop a number of clones, all trying to mimic their instructor.

True Jiu-Jitsu, as any martial arts form, should be an expression of the self, because the reason why I named my school 'Soul Jiu-Jitsu'. You should find your way, not follow mine.

Using your imagination, consider all skills or techniques to be languages, words or vocabulary; picture training at other schools and with other people, in other styles, as expanding your vocabulary. From this perspective you can see, that cross-training is a very effective way to find the best tools for self-expression ..

The better the vocabulary, the stronger and clearer the message, after all!

Instructor Tip:

Find your voice in the middle of all those around you, and grow your circle of friends / training partners in the local community.
~ Darec

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A Basic Methodology on Ways to Increase Energy

Walking around will get the blood pumping in the body and cause the energy resources to activate. Promoting the cardiovascular system is critical for having a balanced energy flow through the body. Thus, whenever free time arises, just walk outside, possibly around the neighborhood. Choosing to walk when energy levels are low requires a light snack and water beforehand. Consequently, the feeling of rejuvenation will march afterwards and begins preparedness in order to invest the vigor towards anything. Professionals recommend walking about; therefore, try walking around the local track to clear the mind and refresh the body.

With that said, taking breaks also produces convenient paths to gain energy, especially if training as an athlete. Whenever a dragging state develops, travel to a vending machine and purchase a bottle of water, particularly if one has a desk job the office should supply everyone with an accessible machine in their lobby. Do not overwork, for energy will diminish quickly, resulting in poor efforts later on. Mainly, the people who work with their larger muscle groups will need to eat plenty during the day. Furthermore, breathing fresh air for the respiratory system allows oxygen to also travel to the brain and replenish parts of the body, further promoting proper vitamin and nutrient processing. Occasional unwinding benefits one's overall health and improves their mood through one's daily activities.

Therefore, a restful night's sleep remains as one of the most important factors in maintaining positive energy levels. Sleeping well will ensure fuel for tomorrow. Adults need to obtain 8 hours of sleep while sleeping wearing comfortable clothing inside an air-conditioned environment. Moreover, sleeping in the dark allows one to slowly fall sleep and remain passive for the brain's nighttime allocation of nutrients. Caffeine and electronics before bed will cause restlessness when trying to find relaxation. Therefore, ensuring enough sleep guarantees a fresh start for the day ahead and also gives the body needed downtime.

Thus, here are ways how one can easily increase their energy levels with a few changes throughout the day. Walk around a bit, this will circulate better blood flow within the body, and through walking outside, the sunlight will provide a natural resource of vitamin D. Recline whenever a feeling of fatigue originates. This will clear the mind and refresh the body, making the day brighter again. A quiet night's sleep promotes a healthy distribution of cells in the body in comparison to disturbed sleep. Sleeping will replenish the body and prime the mind for the day ahead. These tips should boost energy when and where the situation to feel better arises.

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Keeping Exercise Motivation High Until Summer Arrives

1. Make it easy

A common problem with stimulating yourself to exercise is that it just 'sounds hard'. “It's too much effort” or “it 'hurts too much” are thoughts that can arise.

So when it's a cold, dark winters day and you feel like you've got zero motivation, make it as easy on yourself as possible! What is the easiest form of activity you could do? Could you:

• Bundle yourself up super warm and take a walk around the block? After this you may decide to walk further, or just call it quits – in which case you will still be feeling better than if you had not walked at all.

• Get up from your desk and do 10 squats? The little energy boost you get from that may spur you on to continue.

You do not need to think of an exercise session as an arduous task. It's just 'movement' and you need to figure out what will get you moving. If that means sleeping in your exercise gear to prepare for a morning session, then do it!

2. Find a buddy

Accountability is one of the best motivational methods around. If you arrange to meet a friend at the gym, chances are that you're not going to let them down, and once you get there, working out will be easier with someone to push you along.

If your budget allows, find yourself the ultimate accounting buddy and invest in a personal trainer. Small group training sessions are usually available to reduce the cost. Hiring a trainer for a few months over winter can go a long way towards helping you continue by yourself over spring and summer. A good personal trainer will help you develop and implement a plan that includes sustainable, healthy habits.

***

The question of how to motivate yourself is a big one. The ultimate form of motivation is called 'intrinsic motivation', which is where you find a strong enough level of desire within yourself to take the actions you want to. This means that you need to have a very strong reason why your goals are important, the reason must have a significant emotional component, and it should also be focused on a long term solution, ie a gradual lifestyle change, rather than a quick fix.

Keep this in mind along with the two points outlined in this article and you'll be on track to have a solid exercise habit under way the time summer is upon us.

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Defining Functional Training

Functional training is one of those buzzwords that seem to have entered the lexicon of terms used by fitness gurus. You do not have to look too far to see someone offering functional training, or functional programming or something similar, and it sounds like it offers the solution to any fitness goal imaginable. The problem with the term functional is that, like fitness, it is an amorphous concept that no one really looks to be able to clearly define, or that becomes defined so poorly that it bears no resemblance to what it actually is. My view is that functional training can be clearly defined, and it needs to clearly address what it alludes to – an approach to training that encapsulates the demands of daily life as well as any physical limitations or demands someone might have.

To that end, functional training actually has some very specific requirements. Stop and reflect on your average day, and it will be clear that there is a vast array of movement patterns being employed. On any given day, we utilize any or all of the following: bilateral and isolated events; ascend and descend by foot; engage in trunk flexion, extension and rotation; carry asymmetric loads; move loads from close to the ground to over our heads; grip, twist and handle a mixture of shapes and textures that require different degrees of manual dexterity; hold objects in static positions for various lengths of time; and lower ourselves to and stand up from sitting and laying at an array of heights and orientations. We do all this without thinking, without training, and extremely, without the correct preparation.

The latter point is critical, and underscores where the concept of functional training should rightly seek to be defined – due to our increasingly sedentary lives, we are losing the underlying physical competence and ability to safely and effectively engage in movements in which we clearly have anatomical and physiological capacities. As “natural” movement patterns are lost, or the amount to which we practice them is reduced, the case for training that mimics these is strengthened; and that is what should be at the heart of functional training.

Based on this, I propose that functional training should be based on the following key movement and loading patterns:

  1. A mixture of bilateral and isolation training should be a component of all programs. While there is a tendency for people to focus on the benefits of big lifts like the squat and deadlift, there is a body of evidence being compiled that supports the assertion that correctly planned and trained isolated movements similar, and sometimes better outputs. For instance, step ups can provide a great opportunity to train isolated movements, and have a great carry over to both everyday life and most sports pursuits (with the exception of weightlifting and powerlifting, almost all other sports movements are either cyclic or acyclic isolated movements )
  2. Asymmetric loads should be a feature of all programs, but should be used judiciously. A great example of a beneficial asymmetricly loaded exercise is kettlebell suit carries, where a kettlebell is carried in one hand only, or asymmetric overhead presses, where one side of the bar has a slightly higher load than the other. It should be noted that introducing this should be carefully managed, and note should be taken of significant changes in perception of difficulty as loading alters from side to side, as this indicates a significant underlining strength imbalance that needs addressing.
  3. Movement patterns from the ground to overhead with irregular shapes, such as sandbags, aquabags, slamballs and other odd-shaped objects provide a means to challenge grip while developing the capacity to reposition objects to benefit from changing locations of biomechanical advantage. We are not necessarily conscious of this, but we do this on a regular basis almost anytime we shift and carry loads. Training these on a regular basis greatly improves our abilities to do this in real life.
  4. Getting down to the ground and getting back up again might seem like a simple task, but have a look at how many people struggle with this. Exercises like the plank provide a good means to get people down to the ground and back up again, while also providing training in trunk bracing. Advanced movements like the Turkish get up, which is arguably one of the most complex and technical movements in which someone can be trained, provides a great means to develop the capacity to move through a number of physical orientations under load.
  5. Trunk rotation, flexion and extension training is frequently neglected, largely due to an unfounded fear of injuring the back. While it is true that excess or uncontrolled rotation, flexion and extension of the spinal can be dangerous, the removal of any form of these movements from a training program is flawed. Rather, it is critical that progress in these exercises is carefully managed, with range of motion and loading patterns strictly controlled to ensure positive adaptations occur.
  6. Some form of plyometric training is beneficial, although the capacity of individuals to safely and effectively complete this is contingent upon a clear understanding of their injury history. Plyometrics can be used to train people in bilateral and isolation modes, with varying degrees of explosioniveness being taught. Plyometrics can teach people to maximize rates of force development, may assist with retention of fast twitch muscle fibers and can help to maintain bone mineral density; all of which are great benefits. Something as simple as skipping can be a great way to introduce plyometric movements into a program, with more complex and challenging movements added as capacity and ability improvements.

A program that combines a mix of insulating and bilateral exercises, in combination with asymmetric loading, multi-planar movement of odd shaped objects, loaded and unloaded movement across and within all planes, trunk movements that mirror the demands of real life and simple plyometrics teach the body to produce force rapidly. These are the foundations of functional training. One thing is clear – good functional training does not involve a fitball under your feet – I've never seen that in the real world, so it has no place in your training.

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Getting Older Does Not Have To Involve Increasing Pain

My schedule has been quite busy of late.

It is a screwy world when we prioritize Facebook over our health, but that is exactly what happened to me accidentally.

I have a routine in the mornings. Up at 6am, tea and emails. But the emails turn in to a peak in Facebook and then I extract myself 40 minutes later and bingo it is too late to go for a run … the phone is ringing.

OK, so it is not just Facebook it is other online social media sites that I check and to be fair, but could I be more structured and exercise? The answer is always – Yes.

The point of the article is that we prioritize ineffectively and then blame our problems on a lack of time. It is never a lack of time it is only a lack of time management skills.

Several years ago I was optimistic in a rally and my knees were hurting. My co-driver was a Doctor and so I said “What do I do?” The answer was “Do not go to a Doctor”.

Then I went to see Joel over at Pinnacle Physio who very kindly helped me out. I said “I Have a Problem with My Knees” He said .. “No you do not.

I was confused, but I committed to a regime of building quads and other muscles in the gym with the help of Shane Pizzey and his team at Aspire Health and before long, my knee pain was gone.

In fact, many other smaller ailments had disappeared too.

Now I let myself slip and I have some big adventures coming up. So I need to get back in shape.

It seems so hard, and yep, it is painful to get going again, but the amazing thing to me is I have way less pain during the exercise than I do before the exercise and I love that feeling.

If you are like me, it may be time to change some routines. You may prefer exercising in the morning or when you get back from work or simply at the gym later in the evening. Whatever works for you is fine. However, you NEED to make it a priority.

Do not fall in to the same trap I did and believe that just because we age our bodies should naturally hurt. Much of that pain and difficulties come from the normal process of atrophy as we become more sedentary.

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Want to Shed Those Extra Kilos? Here’s What You Should Do

Being fit is essential; there are no second guesses about that. In this day and age, it is imperative to keep yourselves fit and healthy. Most people these days are subjected to desk jobs that are why they do not get much time for physical activity, but this is just an excuse most people give. If you have the willpower, you will make the time for it.

Common Misconceptions about fitness

• Eating less will burn fat: The most common misconception that people have is that if they eat less, they will automatically lose fat. Although part of it is true, it's not definitive. No matter what you eat, your calories will not burn unless you do actual physical exercise.

• Removing all kinds of fat from your diet: Like proteins and vitamins, fats are also vital to your diet. But yes, if you include fat in your diet, ensure that it is taken in proper ratio without overdoing it.

• Lifting heavy weight is essential: Some people especially those added to gyms believe that lifting heavy weights is part and parcel of the job. The truth is that you should lift weights that you can. Do not overdo it and end up being injured. Lifting weights is good, but it's not essential by any stretch of the imagination.

• It's better not to train very hard: If you want to purchase your desired physical shape, it is essential to train very hard. Nothing has been achieved without hard work, and it is the same for fitness.

So, these are the few misconceptions about fitness among many. It's best if you avoid them if you want to shed those extra kilos. Without you under a liposuction, there are no shortcuts to attaining optimum fitness. But are confused about which steps to follow in order to lose weight?

Here are a few things that you should follow

• Get up early: Sleeping for long hours is harmful to your body. You may feel relaxed, but the lack of activity for so long can increase your fat. Get up early and go for a jog.

• Cut all junk food out: Junk food has always been one of the largest contributors to fat. If you want to lose fat, cut all the fast food out of your diet

• Eat healthily: Try to base your diet on healthy food, Focus on having lots of vegetables and fruits.

• Consume less alcohol: Alcohol contains a very high amount of calories which can be harmful to you. If you have to drink, drink occasionally.

Do not understate fitness. If you are fit, your self-confidence will automatically increase.

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3 Reasons Why Women Over 50 Should Lift Weight

Most of my clients are women over the age of 50. As a group, I can say that they are the hardest working and most dedicated clients that a personal trainer could ask for. Hard working, dedicated, and totally focused on getting better and stronger. Girls definitely rule when it comes to training.

The largest request I get when starting with a new client is “I need to get rid of this fat around my (fill in the blank)”. The impression is that if they do tons of crunches, they will lose the fat that has accumulated around their bellies. It does not quite work that way. Exercises targeting a specific part of the anatomy does not burn-up all the fat in that one area. Sorry.

In addition to accumulating a little extra padding in those “problem areas”, there are other changes occurring in your body after 50. Here are just a few of the most common adaptations to age:

• Menopause ends the childbearing years
• Gray hair replace natural hair color
• Vision fades requiring reading glasses
• Gravity starts to take over as everything starts to sag a bit
• Skin loses it's normal elasticity and feels loose
• Thickness around the waist and hips start to form

I could go on, but let's stop there. There is no way to stop the natural aging process. At 59, I am amazed at how my body has changed over the past 20 years. With every 12-month turn of the calendar, I have to work harder to just keep-up. Since I know I can not stop the aging process, my goal is to simply slow it down a bit, and that should be yours as well.

Perhaps one of the best ways to slow down the effects of aging after 50 is to lift weight. Now, I'm not talking about the little 2-pound dumbbells. I'm talking REAL weight. Here are 3 reasons why you need to lift weight after 50:

1. Bone Density

You think drinking milk and taking calcium supplements is going to keep your bones strong and hold off the dreaded “hump back” caused by osteoporosis? Think again.

The best way to build strong bones is by lifting heavy weight. Think about it for a second – When you pick up something heavy, your brain (being the super smart computer it is) determines that you need a little more thickness in that arm-bone or else it will snap like a twig. So, when you consistently hoist heavy weight, growth hormone is produced and new bone cells created to increase the density and strength of the skeletal structure (your arm).

This is called “anatomical adaptation”, and it is the fastest and best way to get your bones strong.

2. Burn Fat

Would you like to turn you body into a little “fat burning machine”? No problem. Just start lifting heavy weight. When you lift weight, your body produces lean muscle mass, which takes calories to support. This increases your basal metabolic rate and helps you to burn more calories during the day.

The more muscle you build, the more calories you burn. If the body does not have a ready source of sugar available, it will start utilizing body fat for energy. This is where good nutrition comes in. But needless to say, if you are lifting weight and building lean muscle, you will reduce the fat around your waist, hips, thighs, and arms.

3. Feel Awesome

I know this one does not sound very scientific, but lifting weight will elevate your mood and make you feel like you can do anything.

Seriously.

When you lift heavy weight, your body produces endorphins, which interact with the receptors in your brain and reduce your perception of pain. Endorphins also trigger a “positive feeling” in your body similar to that of morphine. In essence, you get “high” when you workout with weights.

Lifting weight is less dangerous and certainly less expensive than taking drugs, both legal and illegal. It is very cool for me to be blessed at the door with a scowl (I'm not in the mood to train) only to have my client give me a huge energized smile when I leave. Yup, those endorphin thing really do work.

So, if you are a woman over 50, then give lifting weight a try. My advice is to work with certified personal trainer who can show you the right exercises and how to do them safely. A good trainer will also help you progress the movements and weight so that you keep getting stronger. If you need any help, just let me know.

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The State of The Personal Training Industry: Instant Results Are Sexy, Long Term Planning Is Not

After years (I'm talking close to 10) of dreaming of helping people through general health, nutrition, and fitness, my dream has finally come true. It is funny to view it that way, since it felt like less of a dream and more of a calling. Growing up the oldest of three kids, I had a natural inclining to help people. And since I was pretty good (although still a noob) and very interested (more accurate) in fitness and nutrition, I thought a great way to combine the two was through becoming a personal trainer initially, and then working my way up from there.

Not going to lie, when I finally started taking the steps towards becoming an actual professional personal trainer, it was nothing that I thought it would be. That is not to say that I do not love what I do, but the perception is made out to seem much more glorious than the actual practice. Fortunately for me, I was way ahead of the curve in terms of knowledge, and it has served me well then far.

I've only spent two weeks in the world of professional personal training, but even that much time has given me perspective towards the nature of the industry, where I think it is probably going, and what I am going to do to make it better .

According to Jon Goodman, the founder of The Personal Trainer Development Center, the state of the personal training industry is all but lost in mediocrity. Although personal trainers are to fault for this, it is not entirely their fault. A major misconception in the health world, especially diet and weight loss, is the promise of instant results. With more brands than ever advertising quick weight loss diets, pills, and exercise programs, many people are falling in love with the idea and “falling short” of the promise made to them. This has continued for quite awhile, further discouraging people from believing there is hope for them to achieve their body composition goals.

Why Instant is Sexy and Long Term is Boring

You're hungry. You've been at work for 8 hours and you missed lunch because you were too busy. If someone draws a banana peel at you, you'd probably eat it (or maybe lick the remaining banana from the rind). The last thing you want to do is go home and wait for food to cook. I totally get it. Now, when I was insane, I spent hours on end a week preparing my meals. But that's near the point. Instant everything has become the norm in today's society. And this makes sense. We spend about 8 hours a day at work, 8 sleeping (if you're lucky) and another 8 doing other things, like driving to and from work, picking up the kids from school, helping with homework, showering, using the bathroom. .. okay maybe that last one is just me. Point is, we do a lot of stuff and cooking to eat better is not fun. It is possible. But not fun, and definitely not sexy, or entertaining, so I get it. That being said, exercising is sexy. Especially to “Bitch Better Have My Money.”

There is also cause to believe that some of us human-like creatures can not really see a future past the end of the week. We do not like to plan (or if you are like me, you like planning, but nothing goes according to plan). This turns in motion a negative association with a long-term vision. The road map only extends this far. The rest is unforeseeable. Not only is planning long term goals hard to predict, but tracking progress can be a chore in and of itself, and we all know we have enough of those. That is why people hire someone like me. “You do the tracking, I'll do the doing.”

Advice For Trainees Seeking Out a Personal Trainer

Understand, first and foremost, that any personal trainer is learning about you for the first time. They are learning how you move, what kind of condition you are in, your injuries, limits, background, and personality all at once. They are doing it very fast, and they need to plan your road map in about one to two sessions. That is a lot to take in, plan for, and predict in a short amount of time. That being said, if you are relatively new to consistent exercise and proper nutrition, just about any start on that path will produce results. So do not sweat it (ha!). Okay, so what kind of advice can I give you. There is a lot, but I will outline what is most important

Your trainer should know your limits and work to improve them

If you can not do a proper squat, let's say, your trainer should recognize this and work with you to improve that, not shy away from the exercise because you can not do it.

He / She should focus on teaching you multijoint movements, such as the squat, forward bending (deadlifts), lunges, presses, and pulls.

If your trainer is spending your entire session teaching you how to bicep curl, stretch, or foam roll, you need a new trainer. Those smaller areas should be covered at the end or the beginning, and not for long. If he / she is worth their salt, and your money means something to you, they will send you videos on how to do these, or do them for you pro-bono. No one should have to pay a trainer $ 30 + a session to foam roll.

He / She should care about your nutrition, give you recommendations, and ask you to keep a food journal.

It is probably the most boring thing out there to hear, and even I do not like the reality of it, but nutrition makes the biggest difference in weight loss. That is not to say exercise is not key. But most people will not be able to lose weight eating McDonalds and lifting in the gym. You need both, but nutrition is the deciding factor between being slightly overweight and being lean and feeling good (especially feeling good).

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Benefits of a Personal Fitness Trainer

The advantages of utilizing a personal fitness trainer's experience and skill will help maximize your overall fitness potential. The personal fitness trainer is there to achieve specific wellness goals while keeping their clients safe during exercising. Understanding the advantages of having a personal fitness trainer will help you make an informed decision if hiring a trainer is right for you.

Objective Achievement

A fitness coach helps you prioritize your wellness objectives. A trainer considers your present wellness level and talks about what you need to accomplish through your workouts. They will help set reasonable goals along with nutrition plans to will help maximize your output.

Personal fitness trainers make a particular workout specifically for your needs and your current health. Having someone create an exercise plan for you is like having a tailor make you a suit or dress to fit you perfectly.

An expert fitness trainer shows you the correct approach to perform every activity development within your specific workout schedule. They will oversee your development and help you adjust form to prevent injury and maximize the training. Figuring out how to perform exercises with the correct form diminishes your danger of potential long term damage. You will have the capacity to do the activities alone at home or down the road without the assistance of a personal fitness trainer.

Inspiration

Inspiration is frequently hard to keep up when you workout alone. A consistent workout regimen with a fitness coach will improve your motivation. Even if you do not intend on using a personal trainer at every workout session, just knowing that you have someone that monitors your fitness goals will help keep you honest. You will also have someone that will really appreciate your hard work and understand just how far you have come.

Variation in Exercises

An experienced personal fitness trainer will provide you a variety of workouts that will extremely produce the best results, which can keep you from getting exhausted both mentally and physically. If a particular workout or movement is not right for you, the mentor can tailor or modify a workout that better suits your needs while still receiving the benefit of said exercise. Trainers will also help continuous improvement to ensure you do not plateau.

An expert personal fitness coach will also maximize your workout sessions. This is particularly advantageous when you have a busy lifestyle with a limited time to design to working out.

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The Role of Mindset in Achieving Your Peak Fitness

In most cases the body can accomplish what the mind tasks it to do (within reason). Call it motivation, the drive to succeed, goal setting or whatever, having the proper mindset will get you to goal.

Do not set yourself up for failure

But you do have to be careful that your mind does not set your body up for failure. For example, if you are trying to lose weight, do not think that you are going to lose 50 pounds in a couple of months – it just is not going to happen, nor would you want it to happen that quickly. But imagine you can lose two pounds per week and you can – that is a realistic goal.

Do it for yourself

Another thing about a mindset is the goal you set for yourself has to be about the betterment of you; not to make someone else happy. Take an addiction for example – smoking. How many times do people try to stop smoking before they really do quit? If they are doing it because their spouse wants them to or for some other reason besides them wanting to really quit, they'll fail. But once they set their mind that they do want to quit, it happens. So the lesson learned is if someone else sets your goal, you do not “own” it and stand a greater chance of failing.

What's in it for you?

Part of a mindset is collecting a reward for attaining some type of achievement. What will yours be? And when? When you set a goal, decide your reward at goal or even smaller rewards at miles along the way. Make sure your reward does not jeopardize your effort. In other words if your goal is to lose 50 pounds, your reward should not be eating a bag of potato chips. Make your reward tangible and worth the effort to obtain, but one that will not sabotage your efforts.

Success builds on success

Once you get close to achieving your peak physical fitness goal, set a new and higher goal. Once you are in the mindset of working toward something, not having that carrot on a stick hanging out in front of you can slow or even halt your momentum, meaning you can fall back into your old ways again.

Changing a mindset is about deciding to go in a different direction, having the drive and determination to get there and then staying there by making it a habit. It can take up to 6 months to change a habit so stay the course and expect a set-back or two before you can say your mind is your new habit.

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The Number 1 Strategy for Fitness Business Success – It’s All About People

I often get asked by fitness professionals wanting to take their business to the next level, what is has my number 1 strategy to success as a fitness business owner?

Is it marketing? Outstanding customer support? Transformations programs? Good prices? It is all of the above but none of the above at the same time.

The absolute key to success in the fitness business is 'Understanding People'.

This is quite a broad concept but I will try to break it down into the key areas of concern for you as a fitness professional.

  1. People and motivation – once you understand what motivates (and demotivates) people, you are well on the way to building a successful fitness business. This knowledge about people is the key to delivering results for your members. Outstanding results is driven by motivation and you need to know what motivates people and how to admit these strong feeling in them. As a simple concept just remember that pleasure and pain is what motivates people as a base level. The pleasure of achieving their dreams needs to far outweigh any pain they experience through training. Through their training and especially early on it is your job to highlight the pleasure that is coming for them once they get through the tough start period.
  2. Empathy – the ability to walk a mile in another person's shoes without ever having been in their shoes. It's not possible to feel and experience exactly what others do, but you should be able to relate to their experiences and struggles on an emotional level. Being overweight or unfit is as much a psychological issue as it is a physiological issue. Quite often people struggle with 'addiction' to unhealthy foods which causes them to become overweight and obese. You do not need to become a qualified therapist but you do need to be aware that what lies beneeth the surface of people's emotions is often what is the barrier to their success.
  3. Expectations – There are certain expectations that people bring to the table when they arrive at your fitness establishment. These expectations can range from good hygiene, friendly chat, clean equipment or comprehensive programs. You need to understand the expectations people have when they come to you and you need to tick these boxes on a consistent basis. You do not need to flash equipment or the people looking instructors but you do need to come in at a basis level.
  4. Be Real – Projecting yourself as someone who is unreal makes you unapproachable to the average person. If you have an exceptional physique then stay humble and be real. It's fine to give members and insight into your struggles and your weaknesses. Projecting yourself as infallible in the area of ​​nutrition is training is both unrealistic and fake. Yes you want to have the example to your members but also keep it real and be open.

Finally, Remember that you will make mistakes. But what will shine through any mistakes you may make is your passion and desire to help and understand people. Be patient with your members as people will move at different paces. People will fail but you need to never give up on them. People are coming to you for a solution to their health and fitness needs. If they know you are completely committed to helping them achieve their goal, chances are they will remain loyal to you for life.

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Working Out Solo Vs Hiring a Personal Trainer

Have you thought about revving up your exercise routine with a personal trainer? If you are not sure if this is the best choice for you, here are few things to consider …

Working Out Solo

Most people choose to workout alone because they do not want to spend money on a trainer. If you're on a budget, paying for a gym membership may be all you feel you can afford. Maybe you prefer to create your own exercise routines. There are several exercise apps for your phone, and other online resources that can guide you. In addition to creating your own fitness plan, you can develop your own nutrition plan that fits into your wellness strategy. Lastly, just because you do not have a trainer does not mean you have to work out alone. Bring a friend, relative, or your spouse with you. Challenge each other and set shared goals.

Working Out With A Personal Trainer

Most people who sign up to work with a personal trainer do so to get better results. It can be difficult to stick to a workout plan you set for yourself, so having someone hold you accountable can be helpful in achieving your desired outcomes. A professional can help you reach your goals by analyzing your current routine and making suggestions for necessary changes. For those new to the gym, it may be a good idea to hire a trainer to familiarize you with the equipment and keep you safe from injury. Having someone supervise your workout lowers your risk of suffering an injury. A personal trainer will have the experience to correct any misuse of machinery.

When you hire a professional, you'll never be stuck in the same old routine. Your fitness coach will change your workout frequently, according to your needs. Plus, you'll learn about different methods and exercise equipment. One thing is certain, you'll never be bored! A professional will push your limits, motivate you to become stronger and faster, and challenge you every session. With a professional by your side, there's no room for slacking.

Even though it costs money to hire a personal trainer, it may not be as expensive as you think. The average cost per session is between $ 60 and $ 70. The price will depend on factors like experience and location. Some trainers may charge as little as $ 25. You can always hire someone for just a few sessions, if you're just looking to pick up a few workout tips.

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9 Reasons Why You Should Become A Weight Loss Coach

  1. It's great work. You have the honor of helping people solve one of their most difficult problems. And in doing so have a massive impact on a client's physical and emotional health. And in many cases a positive flow on effect onto their family and friends.
  2. You can charge a premium for your time. You are a specialist focussing on an area of ​​weight loss that no pill or powder can even touch. You go to the heart of the problem and help people change at a deep level. You can advise on diet exercise and most importantly unconscious mindset.
  3. If you are doing a physical job such as personal training you know you have a life span, plus if you are injured or even unwell it's very hard to do. As a coach you can still instruct in exercise but you can shift to an office based practice if you wish.
  4. You are not restricted to any particular location you can see clients in your home in an office and anywhere in the world via the magic of Skype.
  5. You can leverage your time. You can see clients one to one but you can also run groups, plus you can use video to give out your generic information. As you scale up your return for your efforts skyrockets.
  6. Need a new direction or a complete change. The great thing about the iChange training is that you can complete it and be seeing clients in just 4 days and it is priced to be accessible to everyone. It does not matter if you are a truck driver or a lawyer you will be able to kick-start your new business quickly.
  7. Need more cash. Just seeing one client a day is $ 1,500 per week, or maybe you just do one a week at $ 300 that would pay bills or let you play more on the weekends. You know exactly how much extra income you need and how much difference it would make.
  8. Looking for a challenge part time, hypnosis is fun and interesting using the power of language to change people's lives. But do not worry you will have all the scripts and guidance to get started quickly, but in time you will want to free-lance the process and be more creative if you choose.
  9. You can jump and make a business of it, see a few clients' part time or run groups. This is a very flexible process.

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Don’t Go To That Gym

There is no point going to that Gym, they only train athletes and do not really care about their normal members, as the coaches are to overqualified for normal people .. (So what is normal ..?)

My thoughts ..?

I sense that some gyms are making waves in the industry and other trainers are trying to put people off by saying certain facilities are advanced for them and I smell a rat.

This notification that coaches are to over qualified for the normal general population and they only train real athletes could not be further from the truth, these are the trainers that you need to seek out.

However, I do believe that there is some slight truth to that statement, so please read on and ill tell you more.

In my opinion this is what the good trainers / coaches / gyms who are to overqualified for the normal population, do for their clients.

They would treat everyone like an athlete; there is a big difference to being labeled an athlete and being treated like one.

Being treated like an athlete means that the coach / trainer wants the best for their clients and will do the following to ensure this ..

1. They would put together an extended plan, that would consider your lifestyle and goals that you want to achieve.

2. They would then cater that plan for that persons needs, be it weight loss, Sport performance etc.

3. All good trainers / gyms will then assess the client every 4 weeks, to ensure their program is working and the client is progressing at the correct rate.

So, what does this mean to you?

You will produce better more consistent results compared to the guys / girls who have not had their workouts planned for them, therefore, if you want to reach your goal being treated like an athlete is how you should do it.

1. You need to ensure that you set a real achievable goal, that you strive to get to.

2. You need to plan your workout over a period of time with short term goals, in order for you to reach the long-term goal

3. The progress you are making needs to be assessed on a regular basis to ensure you are going in the right direction

TOP TIP.

Most people fear the unknown, why not ask YOUR trainer if he / she plans your workouts, or do they just make it up on the spot?

If you or your trainer are just making it up as you go along how do you expect to achieve your goal be fat loss or entering an event, such as the great south run etc?

Be wise and smart with your programming or by choosing your trainer and the results will be fantastic

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Sticking to Your Fitness Regime

1. PLANNING

This is the largest one and is especially important in the first month of your fitness period, as it's the critical time for developing habits. Write out a plan for your first four weeks and post it on your fridge, or somewhere else you can easily see it. Include what exercise you will do on each day, what time you will do it, and when you will have rest days. As part of your initial four week plan it's a good idea to book in a few sessions with a personal trainer for some 'kick-start' motivation, to check you've got the right mix of variables in your program (frequency, intensity, type of exercise, rest …), and for the extra support you'll need at this time. By the way, they're also very likely to work you harder than you'll work yourself, and a good personal trainer will make your workouts fun as well as effective.

You must have an alternative plan in place to minimize getting off track: Will you still run if it's raining? What happens if you have to work late and miss the class you wanted to do? Look at your exercise plan, determine everything that could possibly go wrong with it, and make sure you have other solutions in place where needed. Maybe it's to put on an exercise DVD at home when it's raining, and if you miss that class after work you know you'll be setting your alarm early the next morning! You may have heard the saying “Fail to plan, plan to fail” – so get that plan in place (in writing!) And you'll minimize the likelihood of getting off track.

2. SUPPORT

I've mentioned the role a personal trainer can play in helping you, and just as important for support are the people in your life – friends, family and work collections. Identify your biggest supporters – those who encourage and inspire you, push you along, or perhaps are very active themselves. Maybe your biggest fan is a partner who will watch the kids while you do your training. Make these people a part of your journey in any way you can, and show them your four week plan! You also need to identify anyone who might hold you back even though they often will not do so purposefully. Do your friends always push you to have another wine, or do you have a work college who tries to stuff cake down your throat every week? You will need to talk to these people about what you're doing and how important it is to you. Be straight up with them or they'll keep nudging you in the direction you're trying to get away from.

3. REWARDS

Set yourself a reward at the end of your first four weeks, as if you can get through this period without too many hiccups, you should be on track for achieving those big goals. While you're at it, set yourself rewards for your big goals. A great 'reward related' idea that I first saw from Catch Fitness in Christchurch is to make yourself a 'tip jar'. It works like a piggy bank and you could put a coin in it for every workout you complete (how proud will you feel when it's full!), Or forhaps for any other health and fitness goals you set yourself (eg cooking a weeks worth of healthy meals) … a great way to save for any rewards you want later! There's a Chinese proverb that says “The Journey is the Reward” … so do make sure you're enjoying yourself along the way too!

4. GOAL WRITING

Get yourself a 1B5 exercise book to help you stay on track. Write your goals in it each day and write down what you are going to do / did that day to work towards your goals. Congratulate yourself on your successes and write down when things do not go to plan, including anything you could do differently to stay on track. It also works well to have a 'dream page' in this book – a visual representation of what you're driving for. It might include a picture of somewhere you're going on holiday, maybe a photo of yourself from when you were happy with your size, or perhaps a picture of someone running, if that's one of your goals. The key to the effectiveness of your book is consistency – use it every day!

5. EFFORT

Know that you'll need to put in effort to stay on track, and a lot of it! Achieving your goals is simple if you have a realistic plan in place, have strategies set up for any slip ups along the way, and have the knowledge, skills and support needed to get you there. But it's not easy. There will be days when you feel too tired to get out of bed, let alone go for a run. Invitations will come along that threaten to interrupt your routine, and sometimes it will seem like progress is just going too slow! So go back to that goal book and remind yourself of what you're going to achieve when you stick with it, and remember that you will always feel better after your workout! If you're really tired, under a lot of stress, or your muscles are sore from a previous workout, you might need to opt for a gentle walk or stretch routine instead of your usual plan, but just put in the effort to do something and you'll thank yourself later.

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