Thanks to everyone who came along and trained with us at Round 1 in the last week – whether you were Boxing, Body Blitzing, Hammering, Barbell Clubbing or Funky Fitness-ing we really appreciate the time you spent with us…and hopefully you left the gym feeling just a little bit happier and more energised than you were when you arrived.
A special thanks also to everyone who replied to my mid-week “Hey, we need a bit of help here” email – I have NEARLY responded to everyone who put forward suggestions and ideas…whether we are able to put everything into action, well, I don’t know – but it sure is great having a few extra heads putting forward suggestions as to how we can make the gym a better place – and improve the experience each of our members receive.
I have a couple of random topics to talk about this week – the ‘plan’ (as if scrawled notes across 3-pages of a diary are ‘a plan’!) is a bit all over the place but here goes…there are sections below on the reasons why we have changed the ‘terminology’ in the gym around punching, details on how you can trial the strength side of the gym AND some info on what seems to be a hot-button at the moment – fasted training.
One – Changing/Adding to the ‘Punching’ terminology.
For ages (years even) we have written combos on the board at each of the boxing stations in the daily circuit. I first started doing this 6 or so months after we started – before that a bag station was exactly that, a station where you hit the bags and came up with your OWN combos! Some people were battling with that – so we started writing up a couple of combos (in chalk, on the walls) which in time morphed into the more prescriptive combos most people have become used too.
BUT. I have blogged quite a few times recently about how the easiest way most of us could get ‘more’ out of our time in the gym would be to treat the bag stations a little more seriously. 3-minutes work on the heavy bag SHOULD be (at least) as hard as 3-minutes on a bike…but for most of us, it isn’t. After all, the bag doesn’t record how hard you are hitting and display it to you on a screen…so we all do a little LESS than we should.
The recent change to write up ‘punch types’ (Jab, Cross, Hook, Uppercut) rather than a really prescriptive ‘LLR, LH, RU’ has been part of a plan to address this. ‘CROSS’ just sounds more aggressive/purposeful than ‘Straight Right’ and what I am hoping is that in changing the terminology we use we will add some more ‘oomph’ to the bag work – and we will ALL benefit from that…
Two (2) – Trialling the Strength Gym
So, since the strength gym opened we have had a heap of people ‘upgrade’ their memberships and head over to have a ‘try’. And I have been pretty happy to upgrade/downgrade people’s memberships as needed – figuring that since the price difference is only $15/fortnight and I can upgrade/downgrade a membership in around 5-minutes, that would be a really simple way for anyone interested to ‘have a go’. I have had a few people ask to do ‘Free Trial Sessions’ – to which I have been saying ‘NO’…not because of the money – but because of the ‘fall-out’.
Let me explain. The classes in the strength gym are many and varied and when you head over there, you could find yourself doing pretty much anything. One day, the Functional Fitness class was a 5km run. Other days we do handstands, we do rope climbs…we do all sorts of stuff (and yes, we are doing squats, kettlebell swings, snatches, you name it as well). My point is, when you have ‘one session’, it isn’t a really good way to do a ‘trial’ because you don’t exactly get much of an idea of what is going to happen the ‘next time’ you are there. Further, you also will tend to take up a LOT of the coaches time as they try and bring you up to speed with what is happening – we might be doing cleans or snatches (last week we did Turkish get-ups – and those movements take quite a bit of coaching AND practice to get right…it certainly doesn’t happen overnight. Don’t get me wrong, we WANT to coach you – but if it is going to be a one-and-done type deal, wouldn’t our efforts be BETTER spent on the rest of the class who are committed to coming back the next day. And not only that, when it is only one session, you are not really ‘ALL IN’ mentally…which means that if things don’t turn out to be perfect, it is really easy to simply withdraw – and tell everyone else that the session just wasn’t any good!
So – there has to be some compromise somewhere…and here is where it is. You can add two-weeks access to the strength gym to your membership for $25. During that two weeks, you can do as many of the classes as you like (we now have them at 5am and 6am, scattered throughout the working day and then again at 5:30pm and 6:30pm. Non-members can get the same deal – two (2) weeks access – for $50. Both of these are ‘one shot’ trials and at the end of the two (2) weeks you can decide whether you want to be in or out.
Three (3) – Staying on TRACK (Fasted Training and other stuff)
I have been answering a heap of questions lately about the benefits of fasted training and whether or not this means you will burn ‘more fat’. The short answer is I am not a doctor or research scientist so I can give you the answer 100%. The longer answer is I have read a heap of stuff on this and I STILL can’t give you the answer 100%…except to say…MAYBE.
Just to be clear ‘FASTED’ training is when you train AFTER all the food you have most recently eaten has been digested. If you are still digesting food when you train (training in a ‘FED’ state), the body will use the calories from that ‘food’ as energy…if you are ‘FASTED’ it will use the energy stored in the body for fuel. Which seems simple – and on the surface of it, you would think this would mean that training in a fasted state would guarantee you would be burning more fat. RIGHT?
Well – the answer is kinda – and the obvious problem is that everything we are talking about there is all VERY short term, and short-term fat burning isn’t going to do much for overall fat/weight loss…but the long term balance of what you are eating versus what you are burning (over days, weeks, months etc) is what will dictate whether you are losing fat or gaining fat. RIGHT? In other words, whether you burn the fat when you are FED or FASTED is not going to be particularly relevant or helpful if your TOTAL CALORIE INTAKE continues to exceed the amount of energy you are burning.
I know this is disappointing, but if you want to ‘burn more fat’ you cannot manipulate things SOLELY by ensuring your exercise is done either whilst fasted or fed – what you do need to do is ensure that you are eating a balanced diet of fresh meat and veggies – watch out for sugar and alcohol – and follow a solid training regimen 3-4 times each week.
If you want to read about all of this ‘the hard way’. Have a look at the ‘Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition’ and the paper ‘Body Composition Changes Associated with Fasted versus non-Fasted Aerobic Exercise’. You can access it here:
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25429252. The paper is interesting enough, but if you want to skip the reading and go to the outcomes, you will find that it discovered everyone in the group lost weight AND reduced their body fat percentage…but basically whether they trained fed or fasted had no impact on exactly how much!
Again – eat like an adult, lay off the sugar and alcohol, and train 3-4 times each week…do that over and over again…good things happen.
See you in the gym,
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