Time to Get it Done, Beach Bootcamp is this week, ‘What is Conditioning?’

Hi and welcome to another week,

It was a great week of classes last week.  To everyone who had a go at the TANKS sessions – fantastic.  The deaflift to Power Clean progression on Tues/Wed was a great class in terms of both technique education AND conditioning – pleased with the way everyone started out with manageable weights and then challenged themselves as the class progressed.  The class based on Hang-Cleans on Thursday/Saturday was quite similar in a lot of ways – rehearse and learn the technique, start off light, get heavier (and higher in the case of dynamic pushups!) as the class went on.  I am absolutely convinced that everyone left the gym with improved skills and strength from those they arrived with!

It has also been great to see so many people getting stuck into the Boxing and Body Work classes.  I was so proud of everyone for having a real go at the HSPU’s on Friday – they are a great exercise in terms of developing both strength – core and shoulders – and balance.  I really like the way so many people are really prepared to place themselves outside of their comfort zone and just give everything a go – it is what makes R1 such a great place to train.  I know as trainers we have been trying to really push the limits lately – particularly during the quieter timeslots – and hope that everyone understands that there are going to be times when we throw the class plans away and really focus on challenging everyone to the utmost.  Come to the gym with a ‘Get it Done’ attitude, not a ‘Get it Over With’ attitude and you will be ready for whatever is headed your way.

It really is easy to get into ‘Get it over with’ mode during your session.  We ALL do it on occasion – but just because you feel that way when you start doesn’t mean that you have to essentially waste an entire session running in cruise control.  Now – as trainers, we try to identify it and for you regulars out there, copping a 5 burpee or bin-run or quadrathon (or whatever) penalty for trivial offences (wrong combo for example), this next piece of information might come as a shock but the penalty is NOT due to the rule – it is because we have recognised your effort is not where it needs to be and it is our cattle-prod to get you to focus and train with some passion.  We hope you will be annoyed at copping the penalty and up your efforts to make sure you don’t get another one.  And we WILL give you another one if the effort doesn’t increase – and the second penalty is often not as ‘friendly’ as the first.  And if Jason is taking the class maybe a third penalty, and a fourth penalty, and a fifth penalty followed by 20 minutes switching between tuck jumps and focus mitts.

We change up the session every day because we want to make sure all of you are being challenged every day – because we want to set people up for a cycle of continual improvement rather than an initial burst of weight loss/strength gain followed by a plateau.  But it seriously will not matter what we do in terms of class composition if you don’t train with intensity and look to challenge yourself in terms of the weights you are lifting and the number of reps you are doing.  For example, if we are doing a two (2) lap circuit that involves a barbell circuit – and on the first lap you finished the circuit using a 15kg bar – on the second lap try to do it with the 20kg bar.  Or, add an extra 10% of reps to each exercise and still try to finish the circuit.  Or throw in a burpee after each of the exercises – or generally try to push yourself just a little bit harder.

There are little ways you can push yourself in every session you do in order to make sure you ‘Get it Done’ rather than just ‘Getting it over with’.  Let’s all focus this week – this month – on reinvigorating that ‘Get it Done’ attitude and really making some progress.  There is the squat challenge to have a go at, there is always extra cardio to do, extra weights and kettlebells to lift and maybe even time to do a bit of stretching and prehab.  And in the classes?  Flat OUT!  No plateaus for us – onwards and upwards is where we are headed, out of our comfort zones and closer to achieving our goals.

See you in the gym,

Michael.

March ‘mini’ Challenge – Squats

The March Mini-Challenge is underway and I was pleased to see some impressive results already on the board.  I had my first go last Monday and am hoping that when I try again the resulting soreness will impact me for just a couple of days rather than for almost a week.  Remember though, it is not about ‘Winning’ the challenge – it is about getting a score on the board early in the month and then working consistently to improve your own personal best as the month goes by.  I think this is more true this month than with the other mini-challenges we have run in the past – Squats are such an incredibly effective full body exercise that doing a heap of quality reps can only help your health and fitness levels.

It works like this – you do as many squats as you do in 20 minutes and record the total number of points you achieved:

Girls Boys
Bodyweight = 1 point per Squat Bodyweight = 1 point per Squat
+ 10 KG = 2 points per Squat + 20 KG = 2 points per Squat
+ 20 KG = 3 points per Squat + 40 KG = 3 points per Squat
+30 KG = 4 points per Squat +60 KG = 4 points per Squat
+40 KG = 5 points per Squat +80 KG = 5 points per Squat

A medicine ball must be used for each rep (your bum must touch it on the way down) and you ARE allowed to change weights within the 20 minutes.  For example, you might do 10 x Squats at 80kg (50 points), 10 more at 60kg (40points) and 30 reps at 40kg (90points)…your total score would be 180.  The time taken to change weights/bars etc is part of the 20 minutes though.

By the way – if your name is Sean O’Neill and you are worried that doing the squat challenge will be too many reps and wont help your goal of gaining LEAN muscle, have a look at this article:

http://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/ask-joe-the-pro-vol-15-under-bar-high-rep-squats.html

Beach Bootcamp – Saturday March 16th

Our next Bootcamp is THIS WEEKEND – March 16th – at C.Y. O’Connor’s beach in Cockburn.  Our last two have been great events where everyone gets the chance to put their fitness to the test in a few different ways – beach flags, water relays, commando crawls, tyre carries…and a tonne of other more familiar exercises that become a little more ‘interesting’ with the addition of soft sand.

There are still some spots left for the event – if you are interested in getting involved then the cost is just $15 and you can register at reception.

Gym Update #1 – New Bag Mitts

Our latest order of bag mitts have been sitting at the airport for a little over a week now – sometimes I feel customs have a personal vendetta against us.  In any case, they will surely be in the gym ‘soon’ – so if anyone has been waiting on there choice of size/color, they will be in the gym very soon.

In addition to the black and pink bag mitts we have offered for a long time, this latest order will see some new colors – green, blue and white.

Gym Update #2 – Treadmills not working

Sorry everyone – we are still down to three (3) treadmills.  The GymCare team are waiting on a part before they can get it running again and it is taking longer than expected to arrive.

Gym Update #3 – Facebook ‘Check-In’ prize

Well, our little ‘Check-in’ contest didn’t really work out – we went from 25 check-ins in January up to 31 check-ins in February…but we have a winner nevertheless.  Kimberley Searle, the Round 1 Pack (Bag, bag-mitts, hand-wraps and towel) is yours.

The ‘Check-In’ prize will be on for March as well – this time a 10-round TANKS pass (valued at $120) is on offer…so when you get to the gym, grab your phone and hit the ‘Check-In’ button.

Gym Update #4 – Blog ‘Secret Mini-Challenge’

Well, I have seen a few people have taken up the Back Extension challenge mentioned at the end of last weeks blog – I know personally I managed to do my 50 reps every single day…and I am sure that is going to lead to a stronger, more resilient mid-section by the end of the month.  How is everyone else going with it?  Feeling stronger in the lower back – more capable when it comes to your bridging and other fundamental core activities?  Remember everyone, keeping your strength up is one of the best gifts you can give yourself – and we cannot cover everything in a single 45 minute class.  Getting stuck into things like the March Mini-challenge, the Back Extension challenge from last weeks blog and using the skills you learned during the classes you have done, TANKS sessions, PT sessions and challenges you have completed (barbell and kb circuits anyone?) to build your strength is a great use of 15 minutes at the end of a session.

Facebook Highlights

Another interesting Facebook  week.  If you haven’t logged on, please be sure to do so and check-out the personal transformation stories that have been posted.  There are some amazing before and after shots on the site which really speak to the drive and dedication of a couple of our long-term members as well as providing a clear vision of what can be achieved.

There was also the usual collection of links and below are a few samples:

Alcohol and Exercise:  http://correct-weight-loss.net/2010/01/13/drinking-alcohol-and-exercise/

Crazy Russian guys doing Kettlebell snatches:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TzJSQK1nt5k

MMA Workout:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1l4FDJnqjLY

How to plan and cook a week of healthy meals:  http://breakingmuscle.com/strength-conditioning/rule-five-simple-guideline-effective-training

http://www.examiner.com/article/crossfit-s-rich-froning-and-annie-thorisdottir-discuss-their-diet-and-training

Link of the week

What is ‘Conditioning’?  Well, maybe it is this!

http://www.8weeksout.com/2013/03/07/what-is-conditioning/

Don’t forget to do your 50 Back extensions every time you hit the gym this week – no weight needed.  Once you are done, maybe spend a couple of minutes doing some shoulder prehab:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WfyN1F0HCBk.

See you in the gym!

Michael.