It takes a bit of Practice, What is Creatine? Heavy Bag Training

Hi and welcome to another week,

Big congratulations to all of the people who got through our April Challenge.  Great effort to commit to so many classes/extras in such a busy month of the year – Easter, School Holidays, ANZAC Day – and I am very proud of everyone’s efforts to finish.  Great work.

Last week was a tough one in the gym – nothing tougher than that Friday session (7-minute rounds with KB Man-Makers!) – and I have to admit to struggling through my first attempt at one of the ‘new block’ of Body Work sessions.  I am really looking forward to the week ahead though that features one of my favourite exercises – PISTOLS – as well as a great mix of other stuff to keep you entertained.  This week we are running 4-minute rounds, 5-minute rounds, 2-minute rounds and 3-minute rounds across the week…it all looks like a lot of fun.

When doing the Man-Makers last week one of the crew in the class I was taking commented that “They don’t look so bad when YOU do them”.  Well, if you forget for a moment that I only had to do two or three as part of my demos before the class – not the 15 scheduled for the workout – then you also need to remember that I have been doing this ‘stuff’ for a whlle.  And do you know how much I suck at doing things when I first tried them?  Do you know how bad I am at most things when I do them for the first time?

The demos I do – and all the trainers do for that matter – are of exercises we have had the opportunity to do over and over again.  We get to practice them and ‘get them right’ before we have to show you all how to do them before a class.  The new stuff we do?  Well, the class plans are out a week or so before we throw them to you – all of the trainers have the chance to PRACTICE before they ever have to do a demo.  Further to that, there have been times where I have had to come in extra early in the morning – I knew I had to demo ‘exercise X’ for the 5am people and just wouldn’t be able to do it ‘first up’ without a bit of movement preparation first.

Things like getting the right elbow movement with your power cleans, getting your feet moving with your boxing, keeping your butt out and your back straight with your rows…we do this stuff and practice it ALL THE TIME.  When we first do new exercises, we are pretty much terrible at them too.  We find them difficult and un-natural just like you do.  Watching one of the trainers do something and saying to yourself “That doesn’t look too bad” is not a guarantee that it isn’t going to be ‘too bad’.  Equally, it doesn’t mean that if you are finding the movement difficult it certainly doesn’t mean you are ‘un-coordinated’ or ‘hopeless’ (things people tell me pretty much every day).  It just means you haven’t quite learned the pattern of movement yet.

So when you do something new – or re-do something old that you have been struggling with – don’t lose faith and don’t tell yourself that you are ‘no good at this’ or that you “just can’t do it”.  Those things don’t help.  Things that do help are:

-       Focus on your core.  Whether you are punching or lifting, you need to activate your core in order to generate power.  For lifting, tighten your glutes and abs before you start the ‘lift’.  For boxing, concentrate on activating those same muscles at impact.

-       Focus on the EFFORT.  As I spoke about a couple of weeks back, you can’t just ‘push’ the weight up.  You have to SHOVE IT above your head as hard as you can.  Or (for a squat) drive up with your legs with real power – just standing up is not going to get it done.  DRIVE UP.  Move the barbells as fast as you can to develop power.

-       Stick at it.  Just like you become a better footballer – netballer – basketballer etc by actually practicing the game, you become ‘better’ at training by training.  Treat every session as a team practice – and today we are all getting better at ‘squats’ (for the want of a better example).  Make every session an opportunity to improve and you WILL.

Remember, time spent in the gym is supposed to make us better and help us feel BETTER about ourselves.  I know that I feel a heck of a lot better about myself when I train hard and feel like I have ‘worked’ through the training session than I do on those days when I ‘managed’ my way through the class.  Treat the session like a ‘practice’ – treat it as a chance to get ‘better’.  And don’t tell yourself you are un-coordinated – what you are is a work in progress and soon enough you will be the one making it look ‘easy’ to the people around you who are just getting started.

See you in the gym,

Michael.

p.s.  Still very keen for some new member’s profiles – would be great to get some more up onto the website.  Send me a note to info@round1fitness.com.au and I will get you the forms.

Gym Update #1 – April Challenge is OVER!

Well done to everyone who finished the April Challenge.  Whilst I don’t think it is the ‘toughest’ challenge we have ever done (that honour surely goes to the 2012 ’12-Days of Christmas’ challenge!) it was certainly a big effort to get 20 classes plus all of those ‘extras’ done in 30-days…particularly with Easter, School Holidays and ANZAC Day all having an impact of some sort.

Our next challenge is scheduled to start in JUNE (next month) and it is coming together well.  I am also hoping to get on board the ‘Dry in July’ program to help people living with Cancer.  More details about both in the next few weeks.

Gym Update #2 – What is Creatine and Why do we sell it?

Before I start on the what, let me talk about the ‘why’!  For a long time, the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) had only ‘3’ supplements on their category ‘A’ list – or those supplements that were made available to their athletes when used according to ‘best practice’ protocols.  (Category B is for products that are still under research and made available only for the purposes of research whilst Category C is for products for which no benefit can be proven.  Category A means the product has been proven to have a meaningful benefit and is therefore made available for use.)

The AIS ‘Category A’ list was expanded recently and now includes 5x products:  Creatine, Beetroot Juice, B-Alanine, Caffeine and Bicarbonate.  So…what does Creatine do?

Well…there is a tonne of research out there (real papers, not Mens Health articles) and if you want the details I really do suggest that you invest a little bit of time (there is actually quite a bit on the AIS site itself if you want to start there), but in essence it is supposed to help improve strength and assist in building lean muscle mass.  It is reported by some people as assisting in post-workout recovery but personally I can’t vouch for that…the strength and power stuff though?  It is one supplement (the one supplement) that I have found useful and continue to find useful…and as noted earlier, the AIS find it is useful.  Anyway, that’s why we stock creatine.  A small bag lasts forever (you only take a teaspoon full per day) and at $25 it is certainly something worth giving a try.

Gym Update #3 – New Lifting Equipment is GO!

We have new Barbells.  We have new Bumper Plates.   We WILL have new barbell clips…unfortunately they are on back order but they will be here soon!

There is also a new rack soon to go up on the wall (to get all those extra bars off the ground) AND some new plate storage on the way to get THEM off the ground.

Gym Update #4 – Back in Stock – Backpacks and Boomers

Backpacks are back in supply – so if you missed out on one in the last couple of weeks, be sure to let us know and we will make that happen for you.  We also have a new supply of Boomers back on the shelves.  Now – they aren’t making the 3kg bags anymore (sorry but they just aren’t) so I can’t sell you them…the 1kg’s are back up and running though so if you are looking for some great protein with no additives at a really good price point, well, Boomers will be the one for you.

Gym Update #5 – New Gym Tags

We have some pretty new gym tags in – they double up as bottle openers and the registration number has been laser printed on the back so it should never, ever need replacing.  You don’t even have to do 10-burpees to get one (but they do cost $5 each!).

Gym Update #6 – Beach Bodies 3-month Program

The first Beach Bodies update was sent out late last week…if you didn’t get it and WANT It, please let me know on info@round1fitness.com.au.  I still have about 3 weeks of programming to go to be ‘finished’ with this unique new program we are offering – 6-days per week of training every week for 13-weeks + food plan + training logs etc.  The idea is we train hard (and eat well) from June till September so that when summer runs around, our boardies (or bikini’s!) are waiting for us.

Just on that, the program does feature different rep ranges for boys and girls based on the lessons learned through Tanks, Body Work and (yes!) Boxing over the past 5 years.

Footy Tipping Results for Round 5

Footy tipping was NAILED by Aaron Thomas this week.  Despite a few less than ‘expected’ results, he managed to negotiate his way through to a score of 8 out of 9.  What did he get wrong you might well ask?  The Bulldogs beating Sydney of course!  If anyone wants to talk about the amazing season the Bulldogs are having or need some help saying the word ‘BONTEMPELLI’, I am always happy to help!

Overall, Justin and Michelle are hanging on to a one point lead from Kim (Bookman has identified himself!), Christine and Bryce.

Dream Team Results for Round 5

DreamTeam is a very (very) frustrating game.  I scored well this week – but still somehow managed to leave more than 250 points sitting uselessly on the bench whilst ‘under performing’ players were seemingly all over my field.  It seems even when I get a good score, I am still left feeling that I have somehow missed out.

Enough about all that – the high scores this week came from Justin (2099), Rocco (2052) and Dale (2020).  Travis also managed to score well (2020) but that was not quite enough to secure him the win!

Link of the week

Love this article and must have read it 100 times.  Using the heavy bag as a training tool courtesy of Ross Enamait.

http://www.rossboxing.com/thegym/thegym24.htm