Four simple things, Gym Changes kicking off, Being a ‘Badass’

Hi and welcome to another week,

Great sessions last week.  I got to do one of my favourite exercises (SOTS Press) – super challenging and a real test of core strength and power.  I am always amazed at just how hard it is…I was obviously keen to do them after not programming them for quite some time as they are scheduled for a couple of days this coming week as well.  I was also very pleased to get to do ‘REAL’ deadlifts in the boxing classes last week.  I know – for all of you guys doing some lifting the weights we had available were not all that challenging…but in group training it isn’t just about you.  And besides – nothing stopping you from doing your reps quickly (but PROPERLY) and getting a few extras in!  I am concerned about technique with deadlifts and will continue to try and coach these moving forwards…

I spent last weekend off at a training course and wanted to share a few of the primary learnings from those sessions as part of my message this week.

The first thing is that going back to basics is of benefit for everyone.  I know for me that standing in the middle of a circle for 15 minutes whilst my years old ‘push press’ and ‘push jerk’ movements were pulled apart was not a great pile of fun.  I felt pretty much like a goose and I honestly couldn’t turn the coaching instructions into actions (something numerous football coaches might be able to share about me!).  When other people were dragged into the middle during the deadlift / squat sessions I just felt bad for them – it is no fun being in the spotlight, no fun being coached until you do it RIGHT (whether you like it or not).  But it IS VERY helpful.  It WAS very helpful.  My press has already jumped up and I certainly haven’t gotten any stronger…I am just doing them better/more efficiently and that has to be a good thing.

Now I know that we all have limited workout time available and the thought of ‘wasting’ that time on a Beginners class or a ‘Starting Strength’ session to make sure you are doing things properly, maximising each punch, each rep etc might seem like a big waste of time – but if what you learn/correct in that session improves your workouts for the next 12-months (or, forever!) then how much is that time really worth?

Secondly – and following on from the point about basics – is another very obvious point.  You have to train with intensity – you just have to have a real go if you want to achieve positive results. When you have the basics right (see the last point), train as hard as possible.  As hard as possible.  I know that a lot of you reading this have been coming to the gym for 12-months or so (or more) and I know you are thinking “He isn’t talking about me, I train hard” but I would like you to ask yourself this simple question – “when was the last time you truly ‘emptied the tank’ during a session”?  When was the last time when you left exhausted not because the trainer rode you throughout the session but because you just put your head down and went for it?  The last time when the session ended and you actually couldn’t get up to leave for a few minutes?  The last time even doing the stretching seemed like a lot of effort.  When it is time to train hard, train as HARD AS YOU CAN!  You will make progress if you do – guaranteed.

Third point is that food is king of everything.  There is no point training at the gym all week if you are going to eat yourself into a coma on the weekend.  And if you are then going to add alcohol to that equation…well, you will probably enter negative territory.  I want everyone to have fun and enjoy their life.  I honestly do – but if you are going to go away from eating real food made with real ingredients on a regular basis you are going to struggle to improve.  If you are going to drink alcohol more than a couple of days each week – and importantly if you are going to regularly have more than 1-2 drinks, you will not make progress.  If you want to ‘cheat’ – take a lesson from the Life Plan.  Pick a cheat day every couple of weeks and use that day and that day ONLY to eat/drink all the stuff you want.  As time goes by, you will begin to find that you need to cheat less and less and your ‘cheat day’ becomes less and less outrageous and more about a cheat meal and a couple of drinks than a day long binge…at that point, you will really start getting somewhere.

Last point – recovery is super important and all of us under value it.  I don’t want to write a novel here but if you spend an hour training then – like it or not – you are going to spend 23 hours recovering…so DO something to recover.  I know, we all work and have family commitments and you can’t just leave the gym and do some hot colds followed by some walking and extended static stretching for the next couple of hours…but you might be able to manage a a 10-15 minute walk at lunch-time.  And you can sit on your foam roller in front of the tv for 10 minutes at night.  The training you do exerts a cost on your body – and if you want to be able to back up and do it again, you have to pay the price (and that price is recovery!).

Four things – get the basics right, train as hard as you can, eat good food and set some time aside for recovery.

See you in the gym.

Michael.

Gym Update #1 – Life Plan / Muscle Plan Underway

The Life Plan and Muscle Plan are now two weeks in.  Hopefully each of you who are completing the worksheets are starting to get into a real rhythm with your food – I know the rules this month aren’t all that hard (which is frustrating to some) but please be careful what you wish for…this is a marathon, it is a sprint.  We are trying to establish sustainable eating patterns you can use/utilise for the rest of your lives.

If you are taking the time to record what you are eating – great.  If you aren’t, don’t stress too much – but it is worth trying to understand that if you aren’t recording data then it is going to be very (very) difficult to make adjustments if the outcome of the next InBody Scan’s are not to your liking.  For those concerned about food quantities, well – I don’t want you to worry too much about them just yet.  We are really trying to focus in on food choices right now and get the first set of results from there…if we need to make further changes down the line (and it is likely we will) then THAT is when quantities become a bit more of a focus.  Get the ‘what’ right first, then we move onto the ‘how much’!

Gym Update #2 – Gym Refurb Project

The first phase of the gym refurb project is underway.  We have temporarily moved the Power Racks / Lifting platforms out in front of the heavy bags.  The next stage will be moving the power for the treadmills (each treadmill needs a dedicated circuit) to the very front of the gym (just inside the roller door) and then moving the treadmills to that spot.

Whilst the treadmills are moved they will be unavailable for a few hours or so – the new power will be using the same ‘circuits’ as the old and in connecting the new the ‘OLD’ will be become unavailable.

That will happen at some time during the upcoming week…if you are unlucky enough to be wanting to run on a treadmill when the power is out – well, what can I say.  The changes are going to be worth it???!!!

Gym Update #3 – October Mini Challenge

I know – the Life Plan is going.  I know – the Muscle Plan is going.  But if you aren’t DOING them and you are interested in really lifting the bar as we head towards summer, you might be interested in trying our October Kettlebell Mini-Challenge.  This is based on the ‘Perfect Pair’ challenge and is to be completed THREE Days each week in October, starting from Wednesday October 1st.  What is involved?  One VERY simple workout!

20 Kettlebell Swings

10 Push Ups OR 10 Goblet Squats

20 Kettlebell Swings

9 Push Ups OR 10 Goblet Squats

Complete 10 circuits reducing the Push Ups/Squats down my 1 each round until you reach 0.

That’s it.  Simple as!  3 times each week.  Ready for summer!  I will be setting the white board up ready to record names as we move closer to the kick-off time!

Gym Update #4 – Join PERKVILLE.  Join NOW!!!

I spent nearly 5 hours on Wednesday going through and cleaning up Perkville – do you know in September alone more than $2000 of free goods and services were given away to R1 Members via Perkville points?  Maybe I need to rethink this thing!

Remember – you receive points just for paying for your membership, you receive points for just coming to the gym…and you turn those points into credit.  It really is simple – you sign up at www.perkville.com and everything else is done for you.

Free stuff at the gym just for turning up?  Sounds alright to me!

Link of the week

How to tell if you are TRULY ‘BAD ASS’ (in the gym of course!):

http://breakingmuscle.com/strength-conditioning/so-you-think-youre-badass-12-tell-tale-signs

See you in the gym!

Michael.