Running; A free workout!

Obviously, doing the job that I do, I rely on clients to earn a living but having said that, personal training isn’t cheap and not everyone can afford it and definitely not on such a regular basis that no other exercise is needed.

So, I want my clients to get results, which means putting the hard work in! I mentioned in my last post about working out at home outside of PT sessions and how one session per week is not enough, so what can you do to burn calories and build fitness levels between sessions?

Now I appreciate that not everyone is motivated enough to workout alone after a long day, so some require a bit of persuasion, which is where I come in, but there are other forms of fitness that will definitely help and don’t cost the world. My favourite and a great example is running. Again, not everyone enjoys it as much as me but it’s a cheap way to burn calories.

Did you know, the average run can burn approximately 100 calories per mile? Obviously that will depend on the pace and effort you put in, hence why it is an average, but it’s hard to find another activity that can beat running when it comes to burning calories. Even better, if you have sports gear, it doesn’t cost a penny to slip your trainers on, go outside and have a walk/jog/run.

We can come back to that word ‘motivation’ again and some people just struggle to do it alone and need a friend or a group. Fine, why not find one! There are plenty of others in the same situation and would love to join you so you can motivate each other. Now if you really want something bigger than a friend or a group of friends to motivate you, I have just the thing for you…..parkrun!

If you’ve never heard of parkrun, it’s a FREE, 5km, timed run in a park and they run in many venues across the UK. It’s an inclusive event for all levels and the emphasis is more on the social side of running rather than the competitive side. It’s a run NOT a race!

Just over 15 months ago, I set up a parkrun in Banbury (Banbury parkrun) and it runs every Saturday at 9am in Spiceball park. It’s a great event with a fantastic community spirit and a range of fitness levels from walkers to athletes. Everyone is welcome and the best thing is, you don’t pay a penny……just register here, print out your barcode, turn up on a Saturday morning and enjoy!

Banbury parkrun #65  02-January-2016 006

What better way is there to burn some calories than a social run with friends. Take a look, come along and give it a go….

http://www.parkrun.org.uk/banbury/

Working out away from the studio

Since becoming a personal trainer, I’ve seen a lot of amazing achievements and unfortunately many people that don’t quite make it. For those who achieve, there are a few common denominators and that can also be said for those who don’t achieve and don’t meet their goals….

Achievers

Generally, those who achieve have these in common…

  • They work hard in the studio and push their limits. Sitting in your comfort zone doesn’t get results and ‘achievers’ know that and make sure it doesn’t happen.
  • They put the effort in outside of the studio. It’s easy to think “I have a personal trainer, so 1 session per week with them is enough!” IT’S NOT!!! In fact, it’s far from it. To get results you have to work for it and ‘achievers’ take away what they’ve learnt in the studio and put it into practice outside OR they attend classes where they can get good quality workouts.
  • They eat healthier and make changes to any bad dietary habits. It’s no secret that exercise alone is not enough to make you fit and healthy, diet has to come into the equation. ‘Achievers’ get the exercise and diet working hand in hand and results happen.

Non-Achievers

Those who don’t achieve have the following in common and it might as well be the reverse of the above….

  • Those who haven’t met their goals just haven’t pushed hard enough and aren’t willing to go to the next level. We all know it’s hard, but nothing in life worth having is ever free or easy to achieve, it takes time and effort! Being fit is the same, it’s not a quick fix and it hurts at times but the rewards are worth it!
  • They think a PT has a magic wand and will transform them in the studio, so they don’t have to, out of it! this may be the case…….IF YOU TRAIN WITH A PT DAILY (!!!) or A LOT during a week, but most don’t and it’s not affordable. That is why it’s important to do more outside of PT sessions. If you want to lose weight, tone up, build muscle or whatever your goal may be, one session a week will not cut it. You have to be disciplined to get results!
  • They eat what they want! Those who never see results should look at this point and take note. You CANNOT be in the mindset of “I’ve just had a tough PT session, so I can eat unhealthily!” There is no point throwing your money away and working hard in a studio if all the good work is undone in the kitchen. It’s true that one good meal won’t make you healthy, the same as one bad meal won’t make you unhealthy, but it’s important to remember that an accumulation of either, WILL! Diet is everything when it comes to results and the stricter you are, the better the results.

Now, with all of this in mind, as a PT I can only advise people what to do outside of sessions with me and work them hard during the sessions they have booked…..what they do in their own time is out of my control! BUT, I can help slightly by providing the tools. So, whether you use them or not, I have decided to open up a ‘videos‘ page with plenty of home workouts and exercises for you to do.

With this page, you now have the tools to put together short workouts to keep you ticking over between sessions if you choose, but just watching them will not work…..you have to put in the effort.

Think about yourself…..are you an ‘achiever’ or a ‘non-achiever’? If you’re the latter, make a change to the above and take a look at my videos.

Latest News

I realise I have been slack with my blog for a long time and I suppose I could blame facebook!

As social media has grown, I tend to find more and more of my clients appear to be joining me and contacting me through facebook, as that seems to be easily accessible and the quickest way. That means, I generally spend a lot of time updating my facebook page and keeping people in the loop with classes and offers on facebook. Naughty me…..I should have been updating my website and especially my blog more often.

It’s 2016, a new year and the time I ask everyone what their fitness goals are for the year. Well, one of mine is to give my blog a little more attention. They won’t be long posts, but I will make an attempt to sit still long enough to update it with important information, so here goes….

2016

Firstly, I’m now in a busy period where classes fill up and my PT time slots are in demand, especially my evenings! If you want a space at a class or you want a certain time slot for PT sessions, please don’t wait and be disappointed when you try booking and it’s gone, book early and save the disappointment.

Talking about bookings, please remember I do have a strict 24 hour cancellation/no show policy, so don’t be shocked if you cancel within 24 hours and still get charged, after all, it’s always been my policy and it is only fair as I cannot fill the space you’ve booked in such short notice.

Lastly, when booking PT sessions, payment is always made before the sessions on a session by session basis or in bulk if you’ve block booked. This is in case any cancellations take place within 24 hours and the session needs to be paid for. Again, this has always been my policy and it doesn’t change.

Boxercise

The last small bit of news is with regards to my Boxercise class. If you’ve ever done boxing before, you will know that gloves/mitts/pads cannot be washed and eventually they start to get that smell of sweat which isn’t particularly pleasant but can’t be helped. I do supply hand gel at my classes to rid your hands of the smell after classes but it’s better to keep your sweat to yourself for hygiene reasons. For this reason I have decided to put a small hire charge (£1) on my pads/mitts for use during the class starting in February. I am doing this to encourage regulars to buy their own equipment and bring it with them.

I appreciate this won’t always happen and the pads/mitts will always be there to hire if needed. To all who attend, thank you for your cooperation with this.

So, that’s it! We have just over 11 months of 2016 to train hard and make changes. I hope to see you all at some stage during the year and I hope I can help you make the changes you want!

Let’s do it!

Latest ‘Exercise of the Month’ – December ’12

I have just released my latest ‘Exercise of the Month’. This months ‘Exercise of the Month’ is a leg and glute exercise. It’s a great exercise for gaining strong, toned legs and buttocks and can also be used as part of a cardio workout.

In this video I show a step by step guide to a full ice skater. The full ice skater takes a lot of impact through the knees so if you have any old knee injuries, please make sure you are very careful and it might be wise to do this exercise without the bounding movement from side to side. The main tip for this exercise is to make sure you take each movement to full range. That means deep squats and long reaches on those ice skaters.

So here is the video for this months Ice Skaters…..

I hope you enjoyed this months exercise and don’t forget to leave your feedback on my contact form.

TRX’ercise Training is here!

Finally, after lots of planning and finding the right venue, ‘TRX’ercise Training’ is finally here and I have now started two TRX Suspension Trainer classes each week.

I am very excited about these classes as I never recommend a product or service that doesn’t work. I’ve been using the TRX for years both with clients and more importantly my own training, so I know first hand the benefits of it. It really works and my training hasn’t just improved, it’s become more fun and functional with the TRX. There are also a number of sports clubs and football clubs using the TRX at present as part of their training, such as Liverpool F.C and Manchester City F.C. If professionals at that level use it, it can’t be that bad, can it? Personally I think it is one of the best fitness tools anyone can have and I’m sure my classes will be very popular when others experience the TRX and see or feel the benefits for themselves.

So what does the TRX give that other workouts can’t?……

The TRX doesn’t restrict movements at all, so the workout can be functional creating exercises from everyday movements. It also helps control exercises that people might struggle with normally because of bad posture or technique. It adds a balance factor which helps hit deeper stabilising muscles(especially the core and the rotator cuff muscles of the shoulders) and adds more difficulty to an exercise. The most important feature is that there are no heavy weights or no need to change weights between exercises. The simplicity of its design means that all exercises are with your own body weight and can be changed easily with a simple shuffle of the feet or hands, to increase or decrease the amount of bodyweight you are performing the exercise with! For example, many women struggle with press ups because generally they aren’t physically as strong as men, in fact a lot of men struggle with press ups too! But with the TRX the resistance can be decreased by raising the angle of the body to perform a press up at more of an incline. This makes exercises like press ups more manageable and appealing to a lot of people. One main benefit is that impact exercises can be controlled a lot more, so a great cardio workout can be achieved as well as a strength session. My favourite benefit is that the core of the body stabilises every movement we make but with the TRX it enhances the work through the core giving a fantastic session with each and every workout. With all these benfits, how can you not give it a try?

Now you’ve heard about what the TRX can offer you, why not come along to one of my classes and try it for yourself. Here are the details of classes…..

If you would like more information about the classes, please feel free to contact me on 07949 235586 or via my contact form to ask any questions you might have.

If you want to experience the TRX before committing to a weekly class, I am currently offering the first outdoor class at Bankside Park for FREE, so you can try it first. Remember to book in if you want to take advantage of this free class.

Come along and see what all the fuss is about. I hope to see you at a class in the near future.

Latest ‘Exercise of the Month’ – October 2012

I have just released my latest ‘Exercise of the Month’. This month we look at the muscles of the stomach and upper leg. This lower abdominal and hip flexor exercise is a great exercise for gaining a flat stomach and a strong core.

In this video I show a progression from a beginner to a more advanced exercise. The most important point to make about this video is about the posture through the spine. Whilst lowering the legs, the stomach must remain tight holding the back on the floor. Only do these exercise if you can keep your back on the floor and not arching the spine. When the exercise becomes too easy, progress to the next but only if you can maintain the same posture through the spine when progressing.

So here is the video for this months lower abdominal & hip flexor progression…..

I hope you enjoyed this months exercise and don’t forget to leave your feedback on my contact form.

COMING SOON!

Recently I’ve been looking for a few courses for CPD(Continuing Professional Development) and also some qualification that will enable me to put on an extra class or two.

I’ve been using the TRX Suspension Trainer for a long time so it seemed the perfect place to start. TRX stands for Total Body Resistance Exercise. It’s such a fantastic piece of equipment that I recommend highly and take with me whenever I’m away from my studio and want a workout. It’s portable, light, versatile and creates an amazing full body workout. So, last week I took it one step further and gained my Level 2 Certificate in Suspension Training. This enables me to put on a class and show everyone else just how good a workout that can be achieved with the TRX.

So I’m thrilled to say that I will be starting a TRX class in the very near future. The wheels are now set in motion and the equipment has been ordered, so keep your eyes peeled for class dates really soon! If you are interested in a TRX class, please feel free to get in contact and ask any questions or ask for your name to be added to my mailing list, that way you will get up to date information on classes, offers and much more. If you’ve not heard of the TRX or you don’t know much about it, don’t worry, I’ve made the video below especially for you. This will give you an introduction into the TRX, how to use it and some of the many exercises that will be covered during a class with me. Enjoy the video…..

Now you’ve seen a taster of the TRX, if you are interested in attending a class as part of your training, contact me by filling in the form on my contact page or call me on 07949 235586.

It’s time to take your fitness to the next level.

Charity Challenge – 100 miles in 10 days!

Recently I have been doing my bit for charity by setting my own personal challenge in Spiceball Park, Banbury. I believe everyone needs a little motivation at times and this challenge was the perfect motivation for me, to test me and raise money for a fantastic cause. So let me tell you a little about what I had to do….

Firstly, the challenge was set up in memory of my dad who passed away on 10th September 2007, so it was fitting to start on that date 5 years on. I decided to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support to add to the money already raised for my marathon challenge earlier in the year in April. I wanted to make the challenge something a little more difficult than the average person could do so here is what I came up with:

  • I had to run 100 miles in 10 days with just 10 runs.
  • I had to run once a day at 9.30am for exactly 10 miles.
  • Each 10 mile run had to be completed within 1 hour and 20 minutes.

The challenge started on Monday 10th September and finished on Wednesday 19th September and I’m glad to say I completed all 100 miles with every 10 mile run inside the time limit. It wasn’t easy at times and my body suffered over the 10 days, but it was all worth it to raise valuable money for Macmillan Cancer Support.

So far, including offline donations, I have raised £295 but I would love to raise much more if possible. So if you want to help and do your bit for charity, please take a minute to visit my Just Giving page, which will be open for a couple of months, to donate what you can, thank you.

I was lucky enough to have plenty of support throughout the challenge and lots of photos taken. Here are a few of the photos given to me to use after the challenge. Enjoy scrolling through…..

Latest ‘Exercise of the Month’ – July

It’s that time again where I give you a short video clip of my favourite exercise for the month that you can do at home by following my pointers. This month requires a little imagination and although I use equipment, there are plenty of railings or climbing frames at local parks that will be sufficient to carry out this exercise, so here it is…..

Exercise of the Month – Body Row Progression – July

This months ‘Exercise of the Month’ is an upper back exercise. It’s the perfect exercise for completely changing a kyphotic posture typical of your average office worker that is hunched over a desk all day long. By strengthening and tightening the upper back muscles(Rhomboids and Trapezius), it pulls the shoulder blades together stopping the rounded posture of the shoulders and the hunched back. Here I show a progression from a basic body row to a more advanced body row by using a stability ball for added balance and to engage the core muscles. If this exercise is too difficult, you can always walk your feet closer to the body and stand more upright if there is a bar high enough to do so. This will decrease the weight you will lift during the exercise and as you progress in strength, you can always walk your feet further away again. Follow the quick tips and give it a go.

You don’t necessarily need a squat rack like I use in this video, I have also performed the same exercise at a local park using a dip station, a waist height  horizontal pole round the edge of a car park and even a climbing net in a children’s play area. If you use your imagination, the great outdoors can be your equipment!

Don’t forget to let me know how you get on!

So, you now have another month before the next video is published, which should be plenty of time to practice and progress through the three stages of this exercise, that’s if you have some extra equipment of course! Remember, I like to hear your stories and how you find the exercise when you try it out, so please feel free to comment and leave your feedback.

Thanks for viewing my video and I’ll see you again next month.

Rewarding Clients

I have recently made a decision to reward clients that have been training with me for a while. I felt like those that are committed enough to put the work in over a long period of time to make changes to their health and their body, deserve a little gift as added incentive to keep them pushing, working hard and heading in the right direction.

It’s always nice to get a little treat, so I have had branded items made as those little gifts for my clients. The gifts are ideal for helping clients for their training sessions and outside of their sessions with me. So I will now be offering a FREE gift to all clients when they reach 25, 50 and 100 sessions. Here is what clients are likely to receive when reaching those milestones……

Flexercise Drawstring Bag – 25 sessions

The drawstring bags are the ideal gift for clients to use for bringing their training kit with them to their sessions. They’re small and light and come in a range of colours. With the Flexercise logo on the front, they’re a nice gift when reaching the 25 session milestone….

Flexercise Water Bottle – 50 sessions

The branded water bottles are a great addition to put in the drawstring bag for each session once the 50 session milestone has been reached. The stylish water bottles come with two lids for you to change, depending on what you plan on using the bottle for. The screw lid is ideal for outdoor use where you might prefer not to have the bottle leaking in a bag filled with other items, and the normal, easy flip and pull lid is perfect for quick access to fluid during training sessions especially when using the CV equipment and in need of a quick drink…..

Flexercise Hand Towels – 100 sessions

The hand towels are another great item to have with you during a session. Although I supply towels for clients during sessions for wiping their brow or wiping down equipment after use, there’s no better feeling then having your own personal towel, especially when it’s the perfect size to fit in a bag and use during sessions, without being too big that it gets in the way. The red trim around the edge of a black towel is a great look and compliments the Flexercise logo nicely. A very nice gift to receive and complete the set when reaching 100 sessions….

So far the gifts have gone down very well with my present clients, so I am considering selling these items if there is a demand for them. So if you come to one of my classes and feel you would make use of one or all of the items, or you would use any of these gifts for other purposes, please feel free to contact me to ask about prices and ordering the items you want.

If you are thinking about contacting Flexercise about personal training, these could be yours with a little hard work and commitment to achieving your goals, so don’t hesitate, call Flexercise today on 07949 235586 to arrange your FREE consultation.