August Squat Thrust Exercise Challenge (AugThrust)

Squat Thrusts are another one of those exercises you love to hate, you know they are good for you, but they are demanding, just like the Burpee yet for good reason.

They are a great way of working the lower limbs, extremely tiring and a good way of building up your muscular endurance and working the heart and circulatory system. 

Squat Thrusts are our exercise of choice for the Kiss Fitness #Augthrust challenge, Join in throughout August as we challenge you with a new target each day. Use the target guide below and attempt to complete the repetitions set each day, you can break down the reps into sets if it makes it more manageable. 

Scoring the Challenge

The challenge is split into 3 levels for which you can score your progress, you don’t need to keep to one level, You can mix & match and go up or down a level. Each level has a score associated with it, use the free-scoring sheet available for download below to track your progress and tally your total score for the month

You get either 1,2 or 3 points for the target level and either 1, 2 or 3 points for the Squat Thrust variation. That’s a maximum of ‘6’ per day, minimum of ‘2’ unless you skip a day in which case it would be ‘0’.

DOWNLOAD SCORING SHEET

e.g, if you choose the LEVEL 2 target guide and the Regular Squat Thrust you will get two points for the targets achieved and two points for the exercise variation for a grand total of four points for the day, simple.

Augthrust Squat Thrust Challenge Levels Target Chart

{loadmodule mod_gantry5_particle,AUGTHRUST 2018 Target Guides}

What is a Squat Thrust

The Squat Thrust forms part of the Burpee exercise, it’s the floor part of the Burpee without the squat down and jump up, it’s an excellent cardio exercise recruiting core and shoulder stabilizers, the strain on the upper body is for some the hardest part of the exercise. Unlike the Burpee, in a Squat Thrust, we never get out of the prone position which keeps the arms and shoulders in constant activation supporting the upper body throughout the exercise while your core activates to protect the lower back and keep good posture and form.
I guess you could call the Squat Thrust a Half Burpee and it’s considered a variation of a burpee. The distinguishing factor for a Squat Thrust is the double jump if there is no double jump I’d be inclined to refer to the exercise as a variation of a mountain climber which alternates feet potions front to back rather than a double hop/jump.

A Squat Thrust is NOT a Burpee

Often Squat Thrusts and Burpees are used interchangeably to describe the Burpee exercise, the Squat Thrust is NOT a Burpee, however, the Burpee involves performing the Squat Thrust action as one of its components.

What’s the difference

Simple, no jump! This means that when you perform the double jump so your feet are close to your hands you simply double jump back rather than pushing through the floor and jumping up, the latter being a Burpee. The fact that we remain in the prone support position (Straight Arm Plank Position) means we work the arms, shoulders and stabilizers to support our body weight for the set reps or duration.

Target Guides

Choose the level you’d like to start on, remember, you can always mix and match, don’t forget to download the Challenge Scoring Sheet to track your progress.

Level 1

Kiss Fitness August Squat Thrust Challenge 2018 Augthrust Level 1 EASY

{rsfiles path=”exercisechallenges/augthrust/Kiss Fitness August Squat Thrust Challenge 2018 Augthrust – Level 1 – EASY.pdf”}

Level 2

Kiss Fitness August Squat Thrust Challenge 2018 Augthrust Level 2 MODERATE

 {rsfiles path=”exercisechallenges/augthrust/Kiss Fitness August Squat Thrust Challenge 2018 Augthrust – Level 2 – MODERATE.pdf”}

Level 3

Kiss Fitness August Squat Thrust Challenge 2018 Augthrust Level 2 HARD

{rsfiles path=”exercisechallenges/augthrust/Kiss Fitness August Squat Thrust Challenge 2018 Augthrust – Level 2 – HARD.pdf”}

How to do a Squat Thrust

Equipment: None required but you might like a mat for your hands. A hard floor will work best.

The Squat Thrust is essentially half a Burpee, the Regular Squat thrusts as seen in the level 2 description below is the standard exercise with variation both easier and harder shown below.

Squat Thrust Exercise Levels

These alternatives can be used to make the Squat Thrust exercise harder or easier.

LEVEL 1 Exercise (1  point)

The Beginner Squat Thrust

This variation enables 3 points of contact at all times proving more support in a slower and more controlled movement.

Start Position & Exercise Actions

    • Start on the floor in the prone position adopting a Plank position with your hands on the floor at shoulder width apart. Stretch your legs out behind so that your body forms a straight line from your heels, though your buttocks and shoulders.
    • Actively engage the core, think about pulling your belly button up towards your spine (this will get you to activate the core muscles).
    • Tuck your left leg up so that the foot is under your torso with your knee close to your chest, bring your right foot up to the same position.
    • Return your left foot back to the start position and follow with your right foot.
    • Repeat the action for the number of reps set within the target guide.

Level 2 Exercise (2 points)

Regular Squat Thrust

Start Position & Exercise Actions

    • Start on the floor in the prone position adopting a Plank position with your hands on the floor at shoulder width apart. Stretch your legs out behind so that your body forms a straight line from your heels, though your buttocks and shoulders.
    • Actively engage the core, think about pulling your belly button up towards your spine (this will get you to activate the core muscles).
    • In one movement, bring both legs into a tuck position, bending the knees into the chest.
    • Return to the start position by hopping back with both feet
    • Repeat the action for the number of reps set within the target guide.

Exercise Video

Level 3 Exercise (3 points)

The Star Squat Thrust

This variation adds a dynamic move where your feet return to a wide stand rather than feet together (Star Shape)

Start Position & Exercise Actions

    • Start on the floor in the prone position adopting a Plank position with your hands on the floor at shoulder width apart. Stretch your legs out behind into a wide stance ensuring that your body forms a straight line from your heels, though your buttocks and shoulders.
    • Actively engage the core, think about pulling your belly button up towards your spine (this will get you to activate the core muscles).
    • In one movement, bring both legs into a tuck position, bending the knees into the chest.
    • Double jump back to a wide stance.
    • Repeat the action for the number of reps set within the target guide.

Tag your workout #Augthrust

Follow us on Twitter and Facebook to get your daily target updates, motivation and more, we’d love to hear about how you get on with the challenge, hashtag your efforts with #AugThrust and we’ll follow & motivate you along the way.

#AugThrust Tweets

28 Day Plank Challenge

Get ready to challenge yourself, this is it, you sign to start Planking every day. This challenge has been adapted from the Kiss Fitness Monthly Exercise Challenge for January, #PlankAwayJanuary. This 28 Day version means you can start it whenever you want and repeat it as much as you like. The challenge is FREE, however, we offer a premium upgrade which includes the challenge programmed in the Kiss Fitness Online Training App. This option allows you to track your challenge efforts, get daily push reminders on your mobile device and the ability to ‘Ask a Trainer’ any questions you have.

This challenge is staggered & progressively increases in time throughout the month with three levels to choose from and three plank variations, this challenge will be suitable for anyone of anyone as there are multiple ways to progress or regress the challenge. 

The plank is an excellent isometric exercise, it requires core stabilizers to fire to maintain body & spinal alignment.


World Pank Record

Think you could beat it? Apply via the Guinness Book of records (links below)

The longest time in an abdominal plank position is 8 hours 1 minutes and was achieved by Mao Weidong (China) on an event organized by Men’s Health in Beijing, China on 14 May 2016.

Read More


Plank Test (perform before starting this challenge)

This challenge is progressive and you should notice some gains throughout the month. To start off you should test your current core strength with a Plank test. This simple test will give you an idea of where you are now, this can be compared when conducting the same test at the end of the challenge. The result of the test will help you choose the plank variation to do during the challenge.

Download Scoring Sheet

To conduct the test:

  • Have a stopwatch ready or a friend with a stopwatch.
  • Get into the plank position.
  • Hold the plank for as long as you can.
  • Stop the test when you fail or you reach 2 minutes.

Choose the Plank variation based on your initial Plank Test result

  • Under 30 seconds – Choose the Beginner variation (Half Plank).
  • 30 seconds up to 1 minute 30 seconds – Choose the Regular or Alternative Plank variations.
  • 1 minute 30 seconds and above – Choose the Plank/Up-Down variation for a dynamic plank. Alternatively, you could use an unstable platform such as a BOSU, Balance Pod or Fitness Ball and place your feet upon them creating a more demanding static Plank exercise.

Test your progress with a follow-up Plank Test at the end of the month

After a month of regular planking, you should be feeling stronger with more endurance in your core and stabilizing muscles. To find out how you have improved, repeat the test you conducted at the start of the month. The test should be exactly the same conditions, same plank variation etc. 

Get your fitness tests scheduled for you on the Kiss Fitness Online Training App when you Sign Up for The Premium 28 Day Pank Challenge

{loadmodule mod_gantry5_particle,28 Day Plank Challenge Target Guides}


Scoring the Challenge

The challenge is split into 3 levels for which you can score your progress, you don’t need to keep to one level, You can mix & match and go up or down a level. Each level has a score associated with it, use the free-scoring sheet available for download below to track your progress and tally your total score for the month

Download Scoring Sheet – Click Here


Required Equipment

Programme Design

We have designed this challenge as a progressive ascending pyramid, in simple turns, each day is equal or harder than the last. The challenge progresses at small steps enabling you to become stronger as you go through the month. The challenge has two-day steps where we keep to the same target for two days (we can call this acclimatization if you like). It’s all to get you up to your target time at the end of the month, in a safe, effective and progressive manner.

Let’s do it! Pick your level below or Mix ‘n’ Match

28 Day Plank Challenge Chart

28 Day Plank Challenge Target Guides #28DayPlankChallenge

Download the #28DayPlankChallenge targets, pin to your fridge and hit those plank times. 

 LEVEL 1 – EASY

Level 1 is our beginner PLANK challenge for those either to new to the lunge exercise or exercise as a whole. The beginner level will be challenging yet achievable for this ability and skill level.

  • Total Time = 20 Minutes 10 seconds
  • Lowest Daily Time = 10 seconds
  • Highest Daily Time = 90 seconds

Kiss Fitness 28 Day Plank Challenge LEVEL 1

LEVEL 2 – MODERATE

Level 2 represents our intermediate level for this PLANK challenge if you have previous experience of the lunge exercise and of moderate fitness level, this would be a suitable level for you.

  • Total Monthly Time = 40 Minutes 20 seconds
  • Lowest Daily Time = 20 seconds
  • Highest Daily Time = 180 seconds

Kiss Fitness 28 Day Plank Challenge LEVEL 2

LEVEL 3 – HARD

Level 3 assumes you are familiar with the PLANK exercise and have a good fitness level. If you regularly participate in physical exercise, this is the challenge level for you.

  • Total Monthly Time = 60 Minutes 50 seconds
  • Lowest Daily Time = 30 seconds
  • Highest Daily Time = 270 seconds

Kiss Fitness 28 Day Plank Challenge LEVEL 3

Don’t forget to use the Scoring Sheet

The Plank Exercise

Key Points

  • Keep neutral spine alignment
  • Maintain a straight line through shoulders, hips, knees & ankles
  • Maintain abdominal tension
  • Remember to breath

EASY – Half Plank (from knees) 

MODERATE – Plank on Forearms 

MODERATE (Alternative) – Straight Arm Plank 

ADVANCED Plank Up/Downs

{loadmodule mod_gantry5_particle,28 Day Plank Challenge Sign Up}

January 2018 Exercise Challenge #Plankawayjanuary

Are you ready to get your fitness plans for the new year started! Whatever your fitness resolutions for the new year, add this challenge into the mix for daily inspiration and a challenge to keep you focused throughout January, plus keep with us, we have a new challenge every month.

Sign Up for our Daily Exercise Challenge Email and join our Facebook Group to stay motivated.
The plank is an excellent isometric exercise, it requires core stabilizers to fire to maintain body & spinal alignment. 

This challenge is staggered & progressively increases in time throughout the month. You’ll end up holding a plank for 2 minutes which is enough for most of us, any more is likely to cause undue stress and not likely to be any more effective. If you find the plank exercise easy, increase intensity by adding instability by placing your feet on a BOSU Balance Trainer or Stability Discs or feet or arms on a Fitness Ball etc. Get creative and up the intensity. 


World Pank Record

Last year when we launched the #Plankawayjanuary challenge Mao Weidong held the record for the longest time in an abdominal plank position and no one has so far beaten the record and the record below still stands! Think you could beat it? Apply via the Guinness Book of records links below.

The longest time in an abdominal plank position is 8 hours 1 minutes and was achieved by Mao Weidong (China) on an event organized by Men’s Health in Beijing, China on 14 May 2016.

Read More


Before you start the challenge

This challenge is progressive and you should notice some gains throughout the month. To start off you should test your current core strength with a Plank test. This simple test will give you an idea of where you are now, this can be compared when conducting the same test at the end of the challenge. The result of the test will help you choose the plank variation to do during the challenge.

To conduct the test:

  • Have a stop watch ready or a friend with a stopwatch.
  • Get into the plank position.
  • Hold the plank for as long as you can.
  • Stop the test when you fail or you reach 2 minutes.

Choose the Plank variation based on your initial Plank Test result

  • Under 30 seconds – Choose the Beginner variation (Half Plank).
  • 30 seconds up to 1 minute 30 seconds – Choose the regular or alternative plank variations.
  • 1 minute 30 seconds and above – Choose the Plank/Up Down variation for a dynamic plank. Alternatively you could use an unstable platform such as a BOSU, Balance Pod or Fitness Ball and place your feet upon them creating a more demanding static Plank exercise.

Test your progress with a follow up Plank Test at the end of the month

After a month of regular planking, you should be feeling stronger with more endurance in your core and stabilizing muscles. To find out how you have improved, repeat the test you conducted at the start of the month. The test should be exactly the same conditions, same plank variation etc. 

{loadmodule mod_gantry5_particle,PLANKAWAYJANUARY 2018 Target Guides}


Scoring the Challenge

The challenge is split into 3 levels for which you can score your progress, you don’t need to keep to one level, You can mix & match and go up or down a level. Each level has a score associated with it, use the free-scoring sheet available for download below to track your progress and tally your total score for the month

Download Scoring Sheet – Click Here


Required Equipment

Programme Design

We have designed this challenge as a progressive ascending pyramid, in simple turns, each day is equal or harder than the last. The challenge progresses at small steps enabling you to become stronger as you go through the month. The challenge has two-day steps where we keep to the same target for two days (we can call this acclimatization if you like). It’s all to get you up to your target time at the end of the month, in a safe, effective and progressive manner.

Let’s do it! Pick your level below or Mix ‘n’ Match

The Plankawayjanuary chart 2018

Plank Challenge 2018 Target Guide #Plankawaychallenge

Download the #plankawayjanuary targets, pin to your fridge and hit those plank times. 

 LEVEL 1 – EASY

Level 1 is our beginner PLANK challenge for those either to new to the lunge exercise or exercise as a whole. The beginner level will be challenging yet achievable for this ability and skill level.

  • Total Monthly Time = 25 Minutes
  • Lowest Daily Time = 10 seconds
  • Highest Daily Time = 100 seconds

PLANKAWAY JANUARY LEVEL 1 TARGET GUIDE 2018

LEVEL 2 – MODERATE

Level 2 represents our intermediate level for this PLANK challenge if you have previous experience of the lunge exercise and of moderate fitness level, this would be a suitable level for you.

  • Total Monthly Time = 50 Minutes
  • Lowest Daily Time = 20 seconds
  • Highest Daily Time = 200 seconds

PLANKAWAY JANUARY LEVEL 2 TARGET GUIDE 2018

LEVEL 3 – HARD

Level 3 assumes you are familiar with the PLANK exercise and have a good fitness level. If you regularly participate in physical exercise, this is the challenge level for you.

  • Total Monthly Time = 76 Minutes
  • Lowest Daily Time = 30 seconds
  • Highest Daily Time = 300 seconds

Kiss Fitness January Plank Challenge 2018   Plankawayjanaury   LEVEL 3 (1)

Don’t forget to usethe Scoring Sheet

The Plank Exercise

Key Points

  • Keep neutral spine alignment
  • Maintain a straight line through shoulders, hips, knees & ankles
  • Maintain abdominal tension
  • Remember to breath

Beginner – Half Plank (from knees) 

Regular – Plank on Forearms 

Alternative – Straight Arm Plank 


Challenge yourself this January and don’t forget to join in the conversation with hashtag #plankAwayJanuary

5 Exercise (Medicine Ball) Workout

The Medicine Ball is a simple piece of kit accessible by home users and at any local gym, they offer additional intensity to core exercises while adding dynamic & functional movements to others. If you don’t already own a medicine ball, it’s a worthwhile investment for your home workouts. In this weeks workout, we’ll be using a Medicine Ball to stimulate the core, choose an appropriate weight and get started.


Equipment Required

Workout

Frequency, Intensity, Time & Type

Perform workout with 2 or 3 sets of 18 repetitions on each exercise with a weight between 1 & 8kg. This is a basic workout format, perform each exercise sets and reps before moving on to the next exercise. Rest between exercises.

Exercises

  1. Medicine Ball Weighted Crunch
  2. Medicine Ball Russian Twist
  3. Medicine Pass Around
  4. Medicine Ball Seated Rotation
  5. Medicine Ball Reverse Crunch

1. Medicine Ball Weighted Crunch

2. Medicine Ball Russian Twist

3. Medicine Ball Pass Around

4. Medicine Ball Seated Rotation

5. Medicine Ball Reverse Crunch


 

QUICK 5 EXERCISE MEDICINE BALL WORKOUT Workout Plan

Medicine Ball Quick 5 Exercise Core Workout Plan by Daniel Jeal Kiss Fitness Personal Trainer Social

Get the workout plan based on this QUICK 5 EXERCISE MEDICINE BALL workout with additional core focused progessive workouts over a 4 week training plan. This a simple workout plan to supplement any training regime or schedule.

You Get:

  • The Workouts and Plan to Download and keep.
  • 4 weeks access to Kiss Fitness Online
  • Messege a Personal Trainer
  • Track Stats and Workout
  • Full Video demonstrtions of workouts
  • Full instructions
  • Calender of planned workouts
  • Add your own workouts

All for £2.99

Purchase Workout Plan

TRX 6 Minute LBT Circuit Workout

This workout users the TRX! Don’t have one? Then you need one. The TRX Suspension Trainer is simply the most versatile piece of training equipment you’ll ever need, it will last for years. I highly recommend you purchase one, unlike the Swiss Ball which is gathering dust somewhere in your house, you’ll actually use this, you can work every area of your body with it, ditch that gym membership and get yourself one of these. Click the links below to search Amazon.co.uk for the current best deals.

 You are also likely to find The TRX Suspension Trainer hanging up in the functional training area of your local gym, take this workout with you. Buy this Workout on Kiss Fitness Online to track this workout via your phone or tablet using our Online Training App powered by Trainerize

This Leg’s, Bum’s & Tum’s Circuit workout is a quick fix, you can choose to do 1,2 or 3 circuits with each round lasting just 6 minutes. Ideal for when you are short of time, workouts don’t have to be long and this work certainly is not. It will however be effective. Choose an angle of intensity that challenges you to get the most benefit from this workout.

Equipment

Workout

Perform 1,2 or 3 rounds of 40 seconds work and 20 seconds rest.(6 minutes per round)

Coffee & Exercise

Coffee is a habit of many peoples workday starting from when they get up and often continues well into the day but does this seemingly harmless habit that gives us such a boost affect our diet, health or fitness? 

Coffee is a stimulant with the stimulation coming from ‘caffeine’ found in many drinks both hot and cold it’s an addictive stimulant. Caffeine however is not only found in stimulation drinks, coffee & tea, it has an active role in many weight loss pills and fat burners! The reason for this is the physiological affects it has on the body which are similar to light cardiovascular exercise without actually doing it.

It’s what you put in it!

To be honest as far as the diet is concerned coffee won’t tip your calorie count over the edge, well not if you don’t put anything in it anyway. Black coffee has about 4 kcal and it’s only when we add sugar & milk that we increase the count. A coffee with milk is likely to come in at about 15 kcal and with sugar 30 to 45 plus do you have something with your coffee, maybe a biscuit? Most people probably like to have a snack with their coffee and this is where the habit becomes detrimental to out diet. 

So that’s just one coffee but most habitual coffee drinkers hardly ever have one, in fact sometimes two or three before they have left the house!

Is coffee bad for me?

No, at least not in moderation, there is nothing wrong with having a coffee and i’d never ask a client to take it out of their diet if they enjoyed it but you can certainly cut it down to one a day and you can also take out sugar, now you have a sensible drink with not too many more calories than cordial.

However if you are having more than 300mg (about 4 coffee’s) of caffeine then this will start to become a problem, the physiological affects normally produce a low after the high and caffeine artificially keeps your heart rate high! It’s this reason you find it in diet pills and fat burners, it has a positive affect on calorie consumption by raising certainly physiological functions of the body, thus burning additional calories.

Will it help my workout?

Coffee provides a stimulating kick to the body and you might of heard of the use of caffeine before a workout! This can help give you a stimulating boost and prepare your body for training which when combined could lead to increased calorie burn during the session. 

I personally can’t see to much benefit and it can be borderline unsafe for high risk populations, those with high blood pressure for example certainly should not take this approach.

To sum up!

  • Don’t quit coffee, enjoy it in moderation
  • Cut down to one per day
  • Don’t consume after midday
  • Cut of the snacks with your coffee
  • Reduce the sugar
  • Drink it black (only 4 kcal)
  • Avoid that second cup!!

 

The Simple Guide to Creatine

Creatine pronounced (Kre’ah-tin) is becoming increasingly popular in the health and fitness supplements market. No doubt you’ve heard of it but it’s unlikely that initially you’ll have any idea of what it is or why it could help you achieve more and reach your goals.

Creatine is a supplement to primary increase muscle size, it’s not a weight loss supplement, creatine should be taken as per suppliers recommend guidelines together with a structured exercise programme for increasing muscle size and a balanced healthy diet.

It’s worth noting that it will only have any effect if you do indeed work out, it will have no effect if taken on it’s own without working out, other than increasing the amount of Creatine stored in your body which is useless as you are not working out.

What is it?

Creatine Structure

Creatine Structure (Image Credit; Wiki)

The most common form being Creatine monohydrate, it is a combination of amino acids naturally found in the body as well as dietary sources such as meat and fish. 

How does it work?

Before we get on to what Creatine does it helps to have some background knowledge to it’s role in muscle contraction.

Within our bodies and more specifically our muscles, creatine needs to connect with phosphate in order for it to be in a form that we can use, this is called Creatine Phosphate (CP). Muscle contraction is achieved by breaking down ATP (Adenosine Tri-phosphate) which enables contraction of the muscle and is the only energy source your muscles can use for contractile activity. 

At this point we probably have enough energy released to provide action for about 4-6 seconds, this is not much time at all and therefore ATP needs to be regenerated from it’s now broken down form of ADP (Adenosine Di-phosphate) back into ATP, this happens in a fraction of a second. This is achieved by the utilization of 3 pathways, one of these pathways uses Creatine Phosphate as the energy source to regenerate ADP into ATP.

Creatine is simply a high energy molecule that regenerates ADP to ATP, this is used in order to regenerate ADP to ATP, this all happens while slower metabolic pathways (the other two pathways used for regeneration of ADP to ATP) are adapting to the increase demand. Our muscles actually store more Creatine Phosphate than ATP and coupled together the stores of ATP and the almost instant regeneration of ATP with Creatine Phosphate allows for maximum muscle power for around 15 seconds, enough to complete a hard set of 6-8 bench presses.

What Does it Do?

We now know what Creatine is and how our bodies use it, so lets have a look at how it’s going to help your workout and the stimulation of muscle hypotrophy (increased muscle size)

The theory of using Creatine to cause muscle hypotrophy is that we can increase the amount of Creatine Phosphate stores in our muscles, which in turn will slightly increase the amount of maximum muscle power at any one time. Basically, this could increase the amount of reps by 2-3 on each set. This will ultimately lead to an increase in tearing and damage to the muscle. Providing we have a good diet and adequate rest, the muscle should re-build more muscle fibres and lead to muscle hypotrophy.

Summary

Creatine does not directly increase muscle size, it provides the means for this to be possible by giving your muscles the ability to perform additional reps at maximum power. This action leads to increased muscle damage and subsequently increased muscle repair and growth.

Side Effects

As with any additional supplement or performance enhancing product, sometimes side effects are reported and creatine is not without it’s fair share. Some of the most commonly reported side effects for creatine use are listed below: 

  •  Odema (water retention) especially in women 
  •  Undesirable weight gain (through water retention) 
  •  Muscle cramps and spasms Gastrointestinal (abdominal) discomfort 
  •  Muscle tears 
  •  Nervous twitches 
  •  Heightened awareness and insomnia 

As well as these side effects it’s possible there are others, supplements will effect people differently, it’s worth noting that in many cases people using Creatine do not report any side effects at all.

Choose Sport Specific Training for Better Results

Exercising & adhering to a regular training plan is not for those who just want to lose weight. The need to be fitter, more able with better performance is often though participation is sport or a regular sporting activity. While generic training has it’s benefits and to some degree might benefit anyone, training specific for the activity or sport you regularly undertake or compete in will bring about better performance and reduce the risk of injury.

Personal Trainers are trained in creating training plans with the wealth of exercise knowledge to build effective and specific training programmes that reflect sport specific movements, from the warm up to training muscles to fire in a certain order with maximum performance, to get the most out of your training you need to get specific.

Specific Training = Better Results

 


Training is good, sport specific training is better

If you participate in sport, an adventures activity or something you enjoy doing on a regular basis (such as running) you might already be going to the gym and exercising to increase your fitness levels, that’s great and quite often I’d say anything is better than nothing but not always in this case. Training specifically towards your sport or activity will not only have huge performance benefits it, will reduce the risk of injury and improve enjoyment through better aerobic ability.

A classic example is a footballer, bench pressing and running a few miles on the treadmill might seem like a good workout but that’s not exactly the type of movement patterns a footballer will undergo during a game. Football players usually perform sudden short hard bouts of aerobic exercise through sprints with quick changes in direction. Their legs and balance are key enabling this kind of activity and training must reflect this with short hard interval training, reaction based movement though all directions and the ability for the knee to take high and sudden loads combined with core conditioning training for excellent balance.

A personal trainer will provide exercises with similar movement patterns required for your sport, training muscle memory while increasing performance through this exercise action. Another good example would be a kayaker, I mention this example as I am a kayaking coach and I know the movement patterns well plus they are quite unique to the sport. A kayaker users high amounts of rotation type exercise which is powered not by the arms but by the trunk and legs, arms are merely levers controlled by the much stronger torso. Wrist strength and mobility is important with paddle actions controlled though slight movements of the paddle blade.

A programme for a kayaker would focus on rotation movement to engage the transverse abdominus and oblique muscles with balance & stability training, push & pull movements for the arms & chest and upper body aerobic activity such as upper body cycling type machine & rowing.

Get the programme that’s right for you

A sports person has specific goals and planning towards them is vital if you are to avoid injury and increase performance, if you can’t afford a personal trainer you can get a training plan with online personal training, extremely affordable and perfect if you are already training, have some or all the equipment you need and only need the expert help of a trainer to build and maintain a training plan for you while monitoring your progress. 

 

3 Barriers to exercise (and why you think, i’m not fit enough)

By far, the title of this blog post “I’m not fit enough to exercise” is mind boggling as it makes little sense yet it’s often the reason for not participating in regular exercise. Here are a couple of examples you probably wouldn’t say but essentially are the same as our first saying.

  • I’m not dehydrated enough to drink
  • I’m not clever enough to learn

In the saying we are comparing our level or ability to do something against the solution to increasing that level or ability, therefore it’s a very odd statement. There are however various reasons why people who believe they are not fit enough to exercise (this could be you) feel they are not able to, they include;


Perception 

Perceived View = Everyone in the session or activity is going to be super slim, super fit and I will look out of place!

Reality = Many people exercise to get fit, lose weight, make friends and everyone starts at a different level. There are always many different shapes and sizes in an exercise session or activity.

Unknown

Perceived View = You do not know what the session is like or if you will be able to complete it

Reality =  Exercise is progressive, with many levels of intensity for many common exercise and activity’s. Exercise sessions are designed to challenge everyone and there are always alternatives.

I Can’t Do It!

NEVER say “I Can’t” Whether you think you can, or think you can’t, you’re right!” Henry Ford

 

The easiest way to overcome any of these barriers is to experience it with a friend, if you are looking to try a new exercise session, get fitter or engage the service of a personal trainer, taking a friend along is always a great idea. It brings you back into your comfort zone with motivation and encouragement by friends is excellent to keep you going.

Do you have time to exercise?

Finding the time to do things that you want to and need to do, can be one of the hardest things we have to plan around. A busy job and long hours don’t really help us either, if you want to exercise, if you want to get fit and if you want to start leading a healthy lifestyle then “I don’t have time to exercise” is just not good enough. It’s essentially a decision already made up, the statement implies you have little intention to try or plan to exercise. The truth is the things in life we do, we do because we want to do them and therefore have MADE time to do them. If you want to do something, you need to make the time to do it.

I like to quote Henry Ford in this sort of situation with the quote

“whenever you think you can or when you think you can, you’re right”

Stop thinking with the “I don’t” ” I can’t” and start think with the “I will” ” I can” and you will soon be finding time to exercise.

Exercise after all gives us more energy, makes us more productive releasing feel good endorphins, not to mention the physical and health benefits.

I often here people saying they only have 10 minutes, so they can’t do anything. 10 minutes is perfect, get down and do a little core workout or take the time to do some full body stretching, in your lunch break, before or after work. You don’t need to join a gym either, depending on your fitness level start going for a short walk or run, slowly increase it, if your only out for 15 minutes then it’s a start and more importantly your doing something.