The Quick Warm Up…

Let’s face it most of the time we want to get in to a session as quickly as possible. Preperation is vitally important but how do we get a session rolling if time is short?

Why is time short well life gets in the way- because people are running late, chatting or thinking what arm exercise they can finish the session with.

 Now as a general rule we foam roll with all clients- the major areas being the outer thighs, glutes, adductors (inner thigh) and upper back. More regular trainees generally can do less as they have less tightness and improved residual mobility compared to new trainees.

From here we introduce full body mobility drills to hit a number of body parts at the same time as well as raising the pulse a little performing 10 of each drill. Generally this is for our more advanced trainees but should take a total of 8 minutes start to finish.

Hip flexor stretch with arms raised.

Squat to wall slide

Squat to stand.

Backward lunge to roatation.

Band Pull aparts and overhead pulls.

Upper body day 3

This is the third day of the weight training programme for enhancing muscle mass. The primary exercise of the bench press is performed with a narrow grip giving a tricep emphasis but also to teach proper form and technique. The supplemental exercise of push ups varies hand placement using dumbells with a neutral grip, also this gives an element of instability to challenge the stability muscles of the shoulder. Single arm push press is used as an accelerative pushing exercise. Seated rows provide balance for horizontal pulling working the scapular retractors. Roll outs challenge the abdominals in what I term a moving brace drill, the abs act to stabilize the core minimizing excessive extension of the spine. External rotations finish the session with some rotator cuff work.

The perfect rep

There is always a lot of talk about perfect repetitions and perfect form in weight training. While I am a purest at heart I can only say that some beginners to exercise will not come to you as perfect weight trainers. So what happens? Well they shouldn’t train in poor form but they do need to develop some form of overload-also they can not stay doing perfect form exercises with no ability to overreach. I tend to think you have to get someone as close to perfect with sensible exercise choices- a beginner may not have perfect form anyway!

What’s the point of personal training?

Not something you would expect a full time trainer to say. The role of personal trainers in the UK has almost gone completely over to being a sales executive rather than a health and fitness expert. Bigger companies push their staff to sell rather than focus on what they got in to the industry for in the first place. Now I understand that sales are a pre-requisite in any business and while not wanting to create an army of clip boarded up technicians there has to be a happy medium. Trainers should be allowed to talk passionatly about their profession- not have to sell blocks of 10 sessions weekly to keep earning. All programmes should be at least 3 months this allows the client to actually focus on a goal for a prolonged period of time. 10 sessions in itself is not training- it’s exercise and hence a lot of trainers simply provide activity for adults- it’s pathetic in concept.

Exercise or Training?

What’s the difference- we are told exercise is good for our health but there is a massive difference between exercise and training.

Exercise in its self is non-directional see it more as activity. Indeed most people perform some form of exercise, would you say these people have anywhere near optimum strength levels, body composition, mobility etc. Probably not! A session of walking or 20 minutes on the cross trainer undoubtably has a benefit on the cardiovascular system. It will provide a stress that the body needs to adapt to and will result in an endorphin rush that will leave a positive mood. After a while (around 6 weeks) progression will start to slow and fitness levels will plateau unless exercise is performed in an organised fashion. Training by definition is exercise performed in an organised fashion- so what do you do exercise aimlessly or do you have a training programme that is designed to hit your goals? Well if you are looking for one contact me at based near Ware and Hertford. Take your fitness to a new level!

No Fixed Weights

When putting the gym kit together at Results Fast ( I took the approach that there would be limited CV equipment and no fixed weight machines. Why? Well do a google search for the benefits of free weights and you will get quite a long list. The main question though is why limited cv/ cardio kit? Our approach with training is to get your body to move effectively and efficently so you can perform the daily tasks in your life more efficently and effectively. From athlete to beginner Results is set up to deliver exactly what it says on the tin- a results. We don’t need fancy treadmills or TV’s- all we ask for is a little dedication and the motivation to try something new.

Timed circuits for conditioning..

An effective way of maximizing gym time and to get enough volume in to your training is to perform timed circuits. I quite like this approach as it not only burns calories at the rate of knots but also if specific you can see some strength gains carryover.

My approach this month is to use a work block of three exercises in this order- a push e.g. press ups, a pull e.g. pull ups and a leg exercise e.g. goblet squats. Repeat each of these exercises in sequence one after the other with 8 reps at a time for 8 minutes. Follow this with intervals such as short sprints or intervals on the rower and then pick a new set of exercises. About 3 blocks of work and intervals is enough for a workout and rounds out at an hour!

Jump Squats…

As a follow on to traditional forms of weight training I quite like jump squats. Not to be confused with plyometric bounding the jump squat is a maximal jump under minimal load or just bodyweight.

Why do I think they are useful? Well to get full muscle recrutiment you need to either (i) move maximally quickly e.g. accelerate quickly or (ii) lift the heaviest weight as you can as quickly as possible.

It’s sort of highlights that high repetition training therefore will not have specific carryover to developing strength, it will in turn though enhance conditioning and can also enhance muscle mass. It’s also knocks on the head the value of super slow training in the concentric portion of the muscle movement.