Doing Extras to improve, ANZAC Day Hours, Life Plan Month 5

Hi and welcome to another week,

Thanks to everyone who provided feedback on the blog last week.  At this stage my plan is to continue writing it each week but (perhaps) have a week off every 6-8 or so.  Certainly all the great emails and messages were really appreciated though and gave me a lot of motivation to ‘get writing’ again this weekend.

Thanks also to everyone who supported Round One Fitness over the Easter break.  It is absolute chaos at the moment with 3 (three) public holidays within a week – with opening hours all over the place and with family / social commitments causing havoc with everyone’s schedules we really do appreciate the effort everyone has made in getting to the gym.  We always (always!) try to run challenging and original sessions on each day over the weekends – including long weekends – to make sure that everyone who gets to the gym is rewarded by a great workout – I really think we have achieved that this week with some super classes offered.  It was also great to have Sean back in the gym over the weekend – back from his USA/Mexico trip and causing pain and anguish to everyone he encounters!  Leila will be back from leave on Wednesday…at which point I suspect Lloyd and myself might disappear from the gym for a few days and leave everything to the two of them (with assists from Zara and Bethy of course!).

Last week I wrote about habits and the impact that they can have on not just the effectiveness of your training – but also on your life.  One thing that all of the trainers have noted about our gym in the past few weeks is how amazing it has been to see so many of our clients – those who have committed to either the April Mini-Challenge OR the 6-Month Life Plan – doing ‘extras’ after completing a Boxing session.  We have people swinging kettlebells, running, squatting – all sorts of stuff – either before or after completing a session.  If you are wondering what we are hoping to achieve out of getting people to do all this extra stuff, well, it is pretty simple – we are hoping that for everyone involved the ‘habit’ sticks and is maintained long-after the ‘challenge’ is over.  I do find it amazing that there are people doing all these ‘extras’ who usually have to run out without even stretching…yet somehow find the time to do 15-minutes of lifting in addition to a class.  I wonder how much progress those people might be able to make if they could continue to ‘find’ the time when the challenge is over?  Whether they can see sufficient benefits in working on their individual weaknesses to dedicate 15 minutes three times each week to doing so?  Remember that strength is one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself – as you get older, being ‘strong’ is a really important factor in remaining independent…think of the people age 55+ in your own life and how their lives are impacted by a lack of mobility and strength?  How are you going to avoid those same pitfalls as you grow older?

In month five (5) of the Life Plan (starting on May 5th – not long now) we will be moving from a circuit based weights program to a strength based program.  For a lot of people who are completing the plan this is going to be the most difficult challenge to this point – forget the food, forget the classes, forget the stress of the weigh-ins…committing to the lifting program and committing to get stronger over a period of one-month is going to be very difficult.  You are going to struggle with technique, you are going to ‘fail’ lifts, you are going to feel that you are getting nowhere – is going to be a very different type of training.  I know that completing the month four circuit independently has been a great challenge for a lot of you – next month you are going to have to use everything you have learned in month 4 + add some real focus/resilience to complete the assigned task.  You can do it.

Don’t get me wrong – the Round One Boxing sessions (which are really a form of focussed interval training) are a great basis to your training program.  For me, they are the main thing I do (I try for either four or five each week) and certainly my favourite thing to do.  But they are not ALL I do.  I certainly try to complete at least 1 (one) Body Work class each week – it gives me some circuit based lifting within the confines of a pretty motivational group setting…a real challenge and some great variety.  But adding some lifting is important as you go along – take time to recognize your own weaknesses in the boxing sessions (“I struggle to hold a bridge”, “I can’t do a chin-up”, “I am still doing push-ups on my knees”) and do some focussed strength training to aid in your own improvement.  You will find that the lifting helps you achieve your goals – and it will ALSO help you push through the boxing classes…which will increase the benefit you get from those sessions – and the cycle will continue to spin around and around as you get better, work on ‘new’ weaknesses and improve further.

Keep challenging yourself – don’t just go through the motions – and if there is something that you are struggling with, spending 15 minutes three times each week focusing on it will really (really, really) help you improve those areas as time goes by.

See you at Round 1,

Michael.

Gym Update #1 – ANZAC Day

Well we have gotten through Easter – thanks to everyone who got along to the gym and made opening the doors worthwhile!  There is another public holiday this week – probably the most important one on the Australian Calendar and our opening hours will be as follows:

ANZAC Day (April 25th) – Standard Public Holiday hours (refer to the website – first session at 08:15am).

I have had a couple of people ask why I am not running the ‘special’ members only public holiday session at 7:15am on ANZAC Day – the reason is pretty simple…I can’t go to the Dawn Service and get back in time to run a class at 7:15am.  I attend the service at the Fremantle monument so if anyone else wants to join me I will meet you on the southern side of the monument at 05:45am!

Gym Update #2 – 30 Hours in 30 Days

Over the last few weeks, my amazing wife Vanessa has been riding for what seems like ‘hours’ every day to help raise funds for Youth Focus – a group who are trying to help kids and their families with the issues associated with suicide, depression and self-harm. Did you know that 1 in 4 young people in WA will experience a mental health issue?  Anyway, she has committed to riding 30 hours in 30 days which is pretty amazing because first off it is just plain hard – and secondly riding a bike would be close to her LEAST favorite thing to do in the whole world…in fact, she doesn’t even know HOW to ride a normal bike.  Surely not riding a bike is a sign of a misspent youth but regardless of all that, she is doing the 30 hours!

Anyway, if you have a couple of $ you can afford to donate to her efforts I am sure the team at Youth Focus would really appreciate it…and I have to say that even I am a little bit impressed at the effort that Ness has put in so far.  The link to donate is HERE:  https://2014lavanlegalspinforyouthfocus.everydayhero.com/au/vanessa

Gym Update #3 – April (Mini) Challenge Week 4

The The April Mini-Challenge Is underway – and it is great to see so many names up on the board, so many people running, riding, lifting and swinging after each class.  But, lets face it – it wouldn’t be a challenge if there wasn’t a challenge so it is time to up the ante.  The NEW rules for the challenge are still pretty simple though:

-       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 30kg, boys min 40kg), 25x Pushups and 50x KB Swings (girls min 16kg, boys min 24kg).

After all – since everyone has already been doing their squats and swings with the lighter weights everyone should be ready to progress!  Right?  Right??

Just another reminder that if you want to do your reps BEFORE a session rather than after, that is just fine with me!  Done is done for the purposes of the mini-challenge.

Gym Update #4 – 6-Month Life Plan

We are fast approaching our next ‘measuring day’ (Friday May 2nd).  Due to the way the work roster has worked out, I will be doing measurements on the Wednesday night immediately following that (May 7th) as well though will be unavailable to do them on Sunday May 4th (I will be running classes on that day).

Please also be aware that there will be a need to complete a ‘real’ weights program in the month of May – primarily four (4) exercises:

Dead Lifts – Bench Press – Squats – Farmers Carries.

If you are really unfamiliar with those exercises and have not been getting along to Starting Strength I will be running a session on Sunday April 27th at 8am SHARP to go over the basics of each of these exercises.  The session will take approximately 1 (one) hour to complete.  The cost of this mini-workshop will be a gold coin donation and these funds will go directly to the ‘Youth Focus’ charity that Vanessa is currently doing the bike ride in support of (refer to the ‘Gym Update 2’ for more details on the charity).

This is the ONLY time I will be running this little workshop to help with technique etc for these lifts – if you cannot make it at this time I apologise however if you are really desperate for assistance you could access one of the other trainers (Sean / Lloyd / Lils / Beth / Z) for a 30 minute personal training session so they can cover the basics for you.  Yes – I know that will cost you $30 to do that but to be truthful the time and money spent to understand how to do these fundamental lifts correctly will be something that is really valuable to you as you go down through this journey.

The rules for the month 4 remain as is:

Training Rules
3 Classes per Calendar Week (Must be signed by trainer)
TWO (2) Barbell Circuits per Week (Mark with BB on the sheet)  Details of the barbell circuits have been included on the challenge sheets.
Diet Rules:
NO PASTA permitted – AT ALL!  One serve of rice permitted each week (Mark on sheet with a ‘R’).
Breakfast cereal allowed only ONCE per week – PORRIDGE (Oats) is the only acceptable cereal.
ONE SERVE of Sweets – Lollies, chocolate, cool drink (soda), icecream or biscuits/cakes etc PER WEEK.
No product with ANY added sugar or sweetener except as part of your ‘Free Eating day’ OR your once per week serve of ‘sweets’.
No bread – At ALL!
No more than THREE (3) pieces of fruit on any given day.  No Fruit Juice 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
TWO (2) x 30 minute walk/stretch sessions per week.

Good luck (and stick with it).

Gym Update #5 – New Gear Arrived – More on the way

As a lot of people would have noticed, we took delivery of a new ‘mobile’ chin-up bar last week.  This will make things easier in Body Work and TANKS sessions (in particular) where chin-ups are on the menu.  Not only will it enable an extra ‘spot’ for chins, it means we can move the bar outside, down to the rubber floor, wherever there is space available.  Thanks heaps to John Lanza (the chinup king) for the bar.

Last week we ALSO took delivery of 2 (two) new Concept II rowers.  We have 10 (ten) rowers in the gym now which means there are still rowers available for use for people doing their own workout/wod even when we are using rowers in the daily boxing class.  Of course, finding ‘somewhere’ to use a rower in the middle of a busy boxing session can be a bit of a problem but I am sure if you have the will you will find the way!

As for stuff that is ‘on the way’, we have ordered a Versa Climber which will be in the gym soon.  This is a really high-end piece of equipment that provides one of the best workouts ever.  Most of the AFL clubs I have visited have a couple of these and use them for ‘off legs’ conditioning – they work really, really well.  Have a look at one here: http://versaclimber.com.

As mentioned last week, we have some new combo bags and shields that we have been waiting on for a while now – these shipped last week and will be here ‘soon’.

Gym Update #6 – New Retail Solution

We have recently bought a new retail / pos system to try and make the ‘store’ run a little more efficiently.  As with all new technology, I am sure getting it in and working will not be without its share of headaches – please bare with us as we get it all working and bedded in.  With everyone still away (Sean is back next week) I probably wont get really stuck into getting it working until the Easter holiday weekend…it is something to look out for though.

Gym Update #7 – Medium Bag Mitts

As mentioned on Facebook during the week, the medium bag mitts are again in stock – along with some new colours (purple and yellow) in small and medium sizes.  Another order of gloves is already in production so hopefully we don’t suffer a similar lapse in supply in the future.

Gym Update #8 – AFL Dreamteam and Footy Tipping

Some much bigger / better scores in Dream Team this week – and, more importantly, finally a win for my team!  Now – whilst it is true that my victory probably speaks more to the quality of the opposition than marking a turnaround in my own fortunes, it is nevertheless great to finally be on the scoreboard (and OFF the bottom of the ladder).  Notable scores in Dream Team this week from ‘GymGods’ (2194) and ‘Bourbinators’ (2202) but top score of the round was from the ‘Half Time Heros’ (2215 points).

Over in the tipping contest, things were ROUGH.  Upset wins by Geelong, Carlton and St Kilda – as well as losses to both local teams – consigned most people to scores of 5 or less.  There were a few who hung tough though – with Ben McManus holding firm at the top of the ladder with a score of 6.  He was joined on 6 for the round by Bomber and our holidaying birthday girl, Leila.

Facebook Highlights

A good week of links on FACEBOOK this week:

17 commandments of rowing: http://breakingmuscle.com/rowing/the-17-commandments-of-rowing-my-journey-from-hate-to-happiness

Slosh pipes:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C0sGMGby7Nw

Food for Firefighters and Police:  http://breakingmuscle.com/military-first-responders/the-best-diet-for-firefighters-and-police

Thinking Happy Thoughts:  http://time.com/49947/happy-thoughts-here-are-the-things-proven-to-make-you-happier/

Foods with surprising medicinal benefits:  http://www.marksdailyapple.com/4-foods-that-have-surprising-medicinal-benefits/#axzz2yzH8guNd

Enjoy!

Link of the week

A great article on diet/lifestyle ‘balance’ this week:

http://robbwolf.com/2012/02/02/8204/

See you in the gym!

Michael.