I do this, or a variation of it, before each workout. I also get my clients to do similar things. This is also a useful series of moves if you are sitting at a desk all day – you can do it on your tea breaks. This is also a good mobility complex for your days off exercise. Or while you’re watching TV. Actually this is good for any one, any time, any place
Most of my clients work in offices and spend hours at a time hunched over the computer. This usually results in their neck being too far forward, their shoulders rounded and back slouched. When all of these joints are in a poor position for most of the day, is not surprising that most of them have back, neck or shoulder pain.
Everyone has to work, so taking away the hours spent at the computer is not a viable solution, so I wanted to put together a video of some simple stretches and movements that I get my clients to do. The last one looks a bit funny, and people may comment at your weirdo movements. But I guarantee if you teach it to your workmates, soon enough your whole office will be doing it and everyone will look silly, but feel better, together
You see so many pictures online of all the cool kids with torn callouses and bloody shins from their super tough badass workouts. Do you want your workouts to be that cool too?
Look, sometimes accidents happen. Sometimes you tear a callous on your hand during kettlebell snatches. You might bang your shin into a box while jumping on it. But these aren’t the hallmarks of a good workout. Far from it. They are the hallmarks of fatigue and imperfect technique.
You can’t push yourself to the limit every time… or can you? Is the saying No pain, no gain valid? Or is that a recipe for disaster?
This is a hard question to answer, and it depends on how often you train and what you are training for. You probably do need some easier sessions at times, but generally speaking, if you are feeling average due to a big night out or a busy day at work then that’s not a licence to take it easy. If you are not feeling great due to illness then definitely rest entirely or take it easy. Otherwise, it really depends how often you train and what your training program is like. [Read more...]
With YouTube, Facebook and Twitter being the source fitness education for many people, I’m not surprised at the amount of injured people I come across! We see all these cool exercises like pistol squats, kettlebell swings, super heavy weights being lifted and – what I saw yesterday which has triggered this post – pistol squats with a barbell overhead. Many of us want to give them all a go so we can be cool too!
The only problem is not everyone is qualified to do all these exercises. Firstly, you need instruction from a knowledgeable trainer to be able to perform the exercise correctly. But that is not even what I’m talking about here. Just because you can do an exercise, doesn’t mean you should. Your bones, muscles and ligaments all need time to strengthen and adapt before you can perform advanced exercises.
Many people say you need to take a minimum of one day off exercise per week so you don’t overtrain. I don’t subscribe to this theory. Instead, I suggest that there is NO SUCH THING as OVERTRAINING, only UNDER RECOVERY.
If you are training once or twice per week, you should be able to go hard at each session. There are 5 other days in the week for you to fill up on nutritious food, get adequate rest and rejuvenate your body.
1. Only Running
Look up a running program online and you’ll find it usually contains 5-6 days of running and 1-2 days of rest. Occasionally a day will be marked as “Rest or Cross-train” without further instruction, but more often than not there is NO strength training component at all.
Some runners believe that the best way to get better at running is to run more but if you have poor biomechanics and muscle imbalances you will be one of the 50% of runners that are injured. [Read more...]
All registered personal trainers need to do courses and get a certain number of Continuing Education Credits in order to maintain registration. The problem is, in Australia at least, many of the courses are not in depth enough, or ground breaking enough, or really challenge the trainers to learn new things. Some of the courses are merely easy point scores in which you learn how to read the food pyramid (hello, primary school!) or how to become a skipping rope instructor (not kidding!). For these reasons I believe it is essential to invest in study in addition to these point scoring exercises.
I’ve recently purchased [Read more...]
There’s nothing worse than having an injury. Not only is there the pain you have to deal with, but it can disrupt your training schedule. You need to come up with a plan so you don’t get stuck in a rut and find it unnecessarily difficult to get back on top of things.
Your first port of call should be a physiotherapist. Find one who is sympathetic to your needs. This might be a physio who is a runner themselves, or comes from a power lifting background, or a specific sports physio who understands that you don’t want to be told to rest for a few weeks.
The physio will be able to assess and diagnose your injury. They will also tell you want exercises you need to avoid, and what exercises you need to do in order to get over your injury. If the physio DOES NOT give you this information, then GET A SECOND OPINION! If you are in Melbourne, I can recommend some who understand you don’t want to rest and that you do have fitness goals.
The next step is to do everything they tell you. This might include mind numbing exercises and it might mean changing up your current training routine but you must do what they say to get better. If you have a personal trainer, they can liaise with the physio or you can tell them what you are allowed to do and what you are restricted from doing. Communication is key here!
If you have a knee injury then you can focus on your core and upper body. If you have a broken arm you can still focus on core and legs. If you have been told to avoid high impact activities like running or jumping then there are many low impact ways to increase your cardiovascular fitness.
Lately I have had an Achilles injury. It was incredibly painful to run and I was even limping while walking. I reduced my running frequency and performed the exercises prescribed by my physiotherapist. Because I was running less, I focused on heavy squats and deadlifts so my legs would get stronger. I also added in more low impact body weight circuits and kettlebell workouts to increase my cardiovascular fitness. After a few short weeks I am now running more again, and I am even running faster now my fitness has increased with all the low impact activity I was doing!
Remember, there is ALWAYS a way to train around injury. Get the right help, get a good plan and you will come out the other side better for it.