‘Software’ upgrade, Delicious and Nutritious, 45 years old? No problem!

Hi and welcome to another week,

I just loved my training last week.  Last Monday’s session, featuring HL Pushups and Squats every bell, add a sled – and add a weight vest for those of us who train at 12pm – and a really challenging session that leaves you battling DOMS in your chest and quads for a couple of days is the outcome.  Tuesday was fast paced (2:30 rounds, one lap around the gym), Wednesday was abs central, Thursday’s one-minute rounds were great – medicine ball throws for explosive power and single leg-deadlifts – and then there was all the fun on Friday with a relay, isometric barbell work and a group bridge with burpees.  Speaking of the ‘group bridge’, a big congratulations to the 4pm crew who – in three (3) efforts – only incurred one penalty.  Which means that all 26 people in the class successfully completed 2x 2 minute bridges and only one (1) person failed on the third – and even then, only once!  It really was a great effort (and one that the 6am’ers and 6pm’ers are probably quite jealous of given the number of burpees they had to complete!).

What else happened last week?  Our Starting Strength crew learned how to do Turkish Get-ups, we had numerous people achieve a personal best when doing their deadlifts in the TANKS sessions – and, as I said on Facebook, the Body Work class was the ‘TRUTH’.  A couple of people – OK, more than a couple – asked me what I meant by that, and the answer is that I just thought that doing the session really showed you exactly where you were at from a training perspective.  Their were two barbell circuits – a really variety of exercises – to challenge your strength.  Some running and burpees to really test out your cardio ability, and some box jumps, kettlebell swings and wall balls to challenge your muscular endurance/explosive power.  It was just an awesome circuit – challenging but achievable – and one that really showed you exactly where you are at.

Not that I really want to talk about the footy this weekend, but I was playing around with my DreamTeam squad during the week and – setting my team aside – I was just so impressed with all of the improvements they have made to the software.  It is easier to use, faster simpler, better.  And just thinking about all of these things made me think firstly about my old IT days and the size of the project that must have been involved in making the changes, but more importantly it made me think abut the effort involved in changing the ‘software’ that manages the habits of people new to the gym.

Now, almost without fail people come to the gym looking to get healthier and lose a few kilos – but pretty much everyone insists they eat ‘pretty healthy’ and just need to ‘tone-up’.  This is fine – I had an office career for 20 years and I understand where they are coming from.  But what seems to happen from there is in the first 3-6 months of their membership is that people make a bit of a change in their outlook – they go from expecting change in 1-2 sessions per week to making their training almost a daily habit – getting through 3-5 sessions in any given week and making time to walk and stretch outside of the gym.  Or they fall by the wayside.  Then in the next 12-18 months those same people who ‘got through’ the first challenge either start to really restrict their intake of things such as bread and pasta and essentially eliminate pre-packaged foods – particularly anything with an added sweetener – from their diets altogether OR they fall by the wayside and ‘drop out’.

What I wish I could do is find a way to ‘upgrade’ the software that is managing everyone – just like Dream Team did! – so that we could somehow skip the first 12-18 months of yo-yo training and inconsistent eating and get straight to the part where eating well and exercising regularly – balancing some resistance work with some classes and maybe even some cardio once in a while! – is a part of the way people run their lives.  Basically, I wish I could apply the DreamTeam upgrade to everyone the moment they walk through the door!

Of course I know that the lessons learned during that first 12-18 months are just so critical if people are to finally achieve the results they want (and I want for them).  Learning things for yourself is the best way to learn – but sometimes I just wish a few more people would believe me when I tell them not to stick their hand in the fire (it is hot) rather than insisting on doing everything themselves and finding things out the hard way.  The problem is – and lots of people are finding this out as part of the Life Plan process – that making change is really, really hard.  That achieving outcomes takes enormous effort and focus over an extended time…and if you take a ‘stop-start’ approach to your diet and training then not only will you not move forwards – you might actually go backwards.

So how would I change things for people?  I would make is so no-one left things to chance.   That everyone – when they went to bed at night, had a plan for their breakfast and lunch for the next day so they would eat a decent breakfast (including some protein) and could avoid the temptations of the café at lunchtime the next day.  I would change it so everyone would complete three (3) or four (4) classes next week – and the week after that and the week after that.  Everyone would squeeze in a weights session – even if it was just a simple 5-3-1 squats program that takes 20 minutes.  Everyone would have a foam roller at home and would roll on it a coTake the time to stretch on one or two other days. And I would change it so that everyone could approach these things as ‘just something I do’ rather than feeling it is something that they ‘HAVE’ to do.

See you at Round 1,

Michael.

Gym Update #1 – Parking, parking, parking.

This message is specific to Saturday’s but really applies ALL the time.  If you park in front of the business that surround the gym – and I don’t mean on the street but in their carparks – then the owners of those businesses have every right to get upset.  The ‘SkillBuilders’ business – directly to the south of the gym – only have three parking bays and often on Saturday mornings all three are filled by Round 1 clients…this makes it incredibly difficult for their clients – who often have disabled kids in-tow – to access the premises.  I know it can be difficult to find a bay – particularly on Saturday mornings and after hours – and the ‘only’ spots to park are in the carparks owned by other businesses.  This is generally OK but if those businesses are ‘OPEN’ then you can see why they might get upset.

Gym Update #2 – April (Mini) Challenge

I want to run a mini-challenge for the month of April.  In this challenge, the requirements will be as follows:

-       Complete three (3) sessions per week.

-       At the end of each class, complete 1x Bin Run (or 1.5km bike in G16), 25x Squats (weighted – girls min 15kg, boys min 20kg), 25x Pushups and 50x KB Swings.

We will do a really simple ‘weigh in’ test (weight only pre/post April measure) and record our progress on the white board adjacent to the treadmills.  For anyone looking to just ‘change it up’ a little bit, this might be just the trick to break through a plateau and put you back on the pathway to improvement.

One other thing – you guys who train in the morning and need to leave ‘on the dot’ to get to work – no trouble.  Do your reps BEFORE the class and you will still receive sign-off.

Gym Update #3 – 6-Month Life Plan

We are well into month 3 now…and, again, I feel like I am signing a few less forms that I was a couple of months ago.  For anyone who has ‘dropped out’, I hope you have a real think about what you are walking away from and recommit to the plan.  If getting your food/training/prehab all in sync and working together is proving too much, remember, that is only a momentary feeling.  Once you have been doing something for a couple of weeks, that is ‘just the way you live’ and all of the rules you are struggling with will become second nature.  You will get used to it and it will become easier.

A reminder of the rules for month 3:

Training: 

Three (3) Classes per Calendar Week (Must be signed by trainer)

Diet Rules:
NO PASTA permitted – AT ALL!
NO BREAKFAST CEREAL permitted – Monday to Friday
ONE SERVE of Sweets – Lollies, chocolate, cool drink (soda), icecream or biscuits/cakes etc PER WEEK.
No bread – At ALL!
Five (5) alcohol free days each week – and only two (2) drinks allowed on the other days.
Two (and ONLY 2) days during the month when you can eat/drink outside of the ‘rules’.
 

Prehab rules:

1 x 30 minute walk/stretch per week. (Mark on sheet with PH)

So the big ‘changes’ are the addition of PASTA and Breakfast Cereal to the exclusions list – and the restriction of the ‘sweets’ from ‘On Weekends’ to ‘One Serve Per Week’.

Remain focussed, keep your sheets up to date and stay positive – after all, if you aren’t getting results by following the plan, do you really think that falling off the wagon is going to help??

Gym Update #4 – Delicious and Nutritious

Long-time member Kylie Stevens has a great new business – Delicious and Nutritious.  (Find more info here: ).  As part of launching her new idea, we have some ‘Green Smoothy’ jars in the fridge at Round 1 for people to try – these are valued at $5 (you get a $1 refund for returning the jar) and are a great value, nutritious snack.  Green smoothies aside, Ky is offering a range of ‘JARS’ to suit any (every?) occasion and I would encourage everyone to check out her website and give it a try.

Gym Update #5 – New Equipment has arrived

In another desperate attempt to ensure that costs exceed revenue, we have invested in some fantastic new bumper plates plus another Olympic Barbell AND some new collars.  As keen watchers of the Tanks area will tell you, there are now more 10kg bumpers, 20kg bumpers and some amazing 25kg bumpers.  I know this might be a bit of a ‘so what’ case for a lot of ‘Boxing only’ clients, but please keep in mind that adding just a little bit of lifting to your own program can really accelerate your progress.

This week in Starting Strength we are covering that most fundamental of lifting exercises – SQUATS.  If you are keen to learn how to do it properly (and safely, and deeply), thinking about booking into one of the ‘SS’ sessions…they are just $11 per class.

Gym Update #6 – Gear is on the way

Our new short sleeve hoodies have shipped, our next lot of bag mitts will ship tomorrow (including the medium ones we have been waiting for) – get excited.  I have had a couple of questions about pricing for the hoodies – it will depend on the import duties that we get charged but will be in the $45 range at a guess.

Gym Update #7 – AFL Dreamteam and Footy Tipping

No updates yet – the split round has meant the season is off to a bit of a slow start but rest assured R2 is a full round and we will all be playing (and tipping) for pride and glory.  Feel free to throw whatever sledges you like my way about the Bulldogs or my dismal tipping results – I promise that there will be no payback when it comes to burpees etc…promise.

Facebook Highlights

Lots and lots and lots of links on FACEBOOK this week – get into them!

Delicious and Nutritious – https://www.facebook.com/pages/Delicious-Nutritious/274421516056886

Dark chocolate = good – http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140318154725.htm

SealFit – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-bxin0tml_Y#t=18

Sexy by Nature – http://everydaypaleo.com/sexy-nature/?utm_campaign=sexy-by-nature-a-book-review

Pistol Progressions – http://breakingmuscle.com/gymnastics/2-flexibility-drills-the-keys-to-progressing-your-pistol

Enjoy!

Link of the week

‘The joy of the process is the constant battle with myself and the growth is the true reward’  45years old?  Well, so what!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bsTjXesSgLs

See you in the gym!

Michael.