Tag Archives: mental strength

4 Movements you should be able to do.

Well you don’t have to be able to do these, however life will be much easier if you can.
 
1 – A full ROM overhead squat
2 – A full hinge
3 – A get up without the use of your hands
4 – A full ROM pull up
5 – A handstand – advanced
 
Why those 4?
 
In terms of general health you’ll find it’s these qualities people lose over time and as such their quality of life depreciates, however if you keep a good amount of strength in these movements you’ll find you age proof yourself throughout the years.
 
Let’s look at them all individually.
 
1 – A full ROM overhead squat.
 
Now this doesn’t have to be with maximal loads, it’s just a movement that will show your bodies potential limitations in ankles, hips & shoulders which are common because of daily life.
 
This skill can be linked to getting out of a chair or up from sitting on the floor. 
If you’re really strong you can do this on one leg too.
 
2 – A full hip hinge
 
This is in reference to a full hip flexion with minimal knee bend while not losing upper thoracic position, it will basically allow you to lift things correctly and minimise injury while firing up your hamstrings, glutes, erectors and musculature of the posterior chain.
 
It will also cross over in to picking something up and carrying it for a distance or time, a skill we NEED in everyday life.
 
3 – A get up without the use of your hands
 
If you’ve ever watched the difference between a elderly persona and a youth when it comes to getting up you will see the difference, however keeping the ability to get up without the use of your hands shows total body connection and strength which if kept in to old age can help keep you out of a retirement home.
 
The above being said, having the ability to perform a Turkish Get Up is also a great skill to have at any age.
 
4 – A full ROM pull up
 
Climbing is something we are meant to do. The ability to pull up your own body weight is an essential skill because it shows health & strength, plus if you’ve gotten in to your golden years and have slipped over and perhaps twisted your ankle the ability to grab something and lift yourself up will be most welcome.
 
5 – A handstand
 
Balancing on your hands was an old favourite in the days past and showed not only strength and total body connection along with wrist, elbow and shoulder health.
 
Inversion is a great skill as it requires concentration, bracing, controlled breathing and calm.
 
Now these movements are very useful for overall health and longevity, if you wish to specialise in a sport then you will have different needs which may go against the best interests of your health/longevity, this is the sacrifice you make.
Being able to move is also great for your mental health too.
 
If you want to work on these then you can either take up a movement class or perhaps some form of advanced yoga.
 
Being able to move is important, don’t lose it, the difference between a young body an old one is the ability to move.
 
Enjoy,
Ross

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Me, Myself & I – Ego Tripping 101

Morning All,
 
I hope you’re all well.
 
So, what to write about today, that isn’t recycled information with a slightly different wording or spin on it…..
 
As you may have guessed that is essentially what writing/social media videos etc is actually about in the world of fitness.
 
There is little that we don’t currently know that doesn’t involve the very complex biochemical reactions/mechanisms of the body that is. As for training and nutrition, it’s almost all been said before, so keeping this in mind I feel some reflection would be good.
 
As yourselves the following and answer them honestly:
 
– Where did you start?
– Where are you now?
– How has your ego held you back?
 
That last one will sting for some of you, but hey ho, ego is a fragile thing that leads us to do stupid things on a regular and repeated basis.
 
When it comes to the ego, it can govern us in secret and we never know. It is so sensitive that it feel threatened by almost everything that opposes it and the main fear it has is that of dying (metaphorically).
 
No one likes to admit they might be wrong, or to change a belief or value, even if it is a destructive one that holds them back, I can attest to this as mine has stopped me doing a great many things and because of this I’ve been able to learn what it feels like when mine starts acting up, which I will share with you in the hope you might be able to learn how to silence yours and avoid making the mistakes I have.
 
1. YOU HAVE BECOME VERY SELF-DESTRUCTIVE.
 
Essentially you know something doesn’t feel right yet you do it anyway.
 
2. YOU FEEL OVERLY SELF-CONSCIOUS AROUND OTHERS.
 
You seem there is alway an argument, judgement or someone to oppose your views coming.
 
3. YOU FIND YOURSELF COMPLAINING OFTEN.
 
Not getting your own way or people not fitting your bias will leave your ego screaming because it feels it’s in danger. You will actively seek out info you agree with, even if it’s wrong.
 
4. FIGHTS AND ARGUMENTS HAPPEN FREQUENTLY BETWEEN YOURSELF AND OTHERS.
 
As you can guess, you defend everything you say without questioning if it’s wrong, which it might intact be.
 
 
5. YOU JUDGE OTHERS HARSHLY.
 
Also known as projection, you place everything you don’t like about yourself subconsciously on others so that you don’t feel sacred around them.
 
6. YOU FIND IT HARD TO LISTEN TO OTHERS WITHOUT WANTING TO INTERRUPT.
 
“I know, but…” – this is the line that shows your ego is feeling threatened, if you go to say it stop yourself and listen first.
 
7. YOU SEEK REVENGE WHEN OTHERS HURT YOU.
 
Children and the immature seek revenge, the mature and the wise seek understanding and to learn from their experience. if you find yourself point scoring all the time it’s a sign ego is controlling you.
 
Take these simple insights as see which ones apply to you and for the love of all that is holy, think before you speak, trust me, it causes more problems than it’s worth when you engage your mouth before your brain.
 
Enjoy,
Ross

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Two ways to look after your mental health.

Physical healths popularity and importance has taken a sharp rise over the years. A lot of people are now more aware of how staying strong and conditioned is important for longevity, however there is a lag with the importance of mental health.

Keeping a strong mind is just as important as keeping a strong body, potentially more important because the body can’t live without the mind.

Let’s look at two simple ways you can immediately improve your mental strength.

1 – Learn to meditate.

You might picture a zen master sat in the arch of his pagoda, or perhaps sitting under the crashing waters of a waterfall but worry not, you don’t need to go to those extremes. Simply set aside 2-3 5-10min blocks of time each day to meditate.

People think meditation is the art of purging thought when intact it’s not, it’s about being able to see all your thoughts, slow them down, purge the negative ones and achieve a calm amongst the storm that is your mind. You won’t ever be absent of thought, merely more aware of them, or at least that’s the first steps.

As a mental image think of it like this; see each though as a car driving past, then try to slow them down to see the brand of car, then the people in the car, what they’re wearing and so on. This will help you calm your mind and learn focus. You might even find a thought you never knew you had and have an epiphany.

2 – Take a walk and surround yourself by nature.

Yep, nature. Trees, rivers, foliage, animals, the works. Getting away from the modern concrete jungles and stepping in to a place removed from it all will help you relief see undated stress. Try and have at least one walk like this every day.

Both of the above will help you reduce stress levels (lowering cortisol), this will not only help you mental health but also your physical health as well.

Enjoy,
Ross

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I know why you don’t like your body.

Why don’t you like your body?

^^ A very personal question but one that really should be asked to help gain understanding.

Many people want to be something their not or have a body that is not achievable for them based on the genetic build they have, even though it’s unrealistic and may send them to the edge of madness.

Obviously for some people this will not apply because they re quite content and at peace within themselves, to those people I say, good for you. It is my wish that one day everyone will find this place.

However for the majority that isn’t the case.

Where did it all start?

Magazines, movies, outrageous promises of 30day transformations that are not really sustainable or was it long before that?

As children we never care about how we look, even the children that are known as ‘chubby’, yep, I said it. They have no problem with how they look or how the other treat them, they see the piss taking and jokes as trivial UNTIL they are taught that what is being aid to them is hurtful and meant to make them feel bad, this comes from our parents, peers and life teachers. Just think about that for a second.

People are only hurt by what they are taught too be hurt by. They only care about what they have been told to care about by other people.

Think about it logically, why should you care what other people really think? You shouldn’t but you will because it’s all you know.

Now, when we ask people why this don’t like the way they look, their answers are usually about specific parts or fat storage areas but I really want to know the WHY to these answers. Where did this dislike come from, what was it based on or who did you learn it from?

The answers might seem obvious yet I doubt many have actually sat down and asked themselves why exactly they feel the way they do.

If you know the cause or the root of the evil you can start to make th changes necessary so that you feel HAPPY, as in actually happy, not just waining happiness because you feel you should all down to the fact you have a slender waistline, toned legs and firm buttocks and hair softer than a baby rabbits fur.

Is what you’re doing for something or nothing?

Does this mean that you will finally be happy, content and love your body?

So dear friends, I ask you again, why don’t you like your body, what is the reason and is it your own belief of one you’ve had forced upon you…

 

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How you doing?

How are you doing?
 
Like, seriously?
 
We are two weeks in to the new year and starting the third and I just wondered if anyone has asked you how you’re doing so far :).
 
It’s easy to get caught up in the New Years rush and forget that we need to take some time to sit back and take a look at how everything is going.
 
You’ll find it isn’t uncommon for people to outwardly say they are fine but internally the exhaustion is starting to take hold, perhaps not physically, but certainly mentally. Or maybe physically as well.
 
Either way, it’s good to keep a check on how everything is going and have somewhere/someone to sound off to, not only for our own health but also to gain perspective and assess if we are being productive or just busy for the sake of it.
 
Take 5min and writ down these questions with HONEST answers:
 
– How are you feeling mentally?
– How are you feeling physically?
– How can you improve these?
– What help do you need?
– Will you ask for it? – A simple yes or no will suffice.
– When will you ask for it?
 
These might seem odd but they will help you open some mental doors and prioritise, if you ask each of these questions for various areas of you life – Work, Health/Fitness, Relationships, etc – You will find solutions and be happier all in all.
 
Take some time to look after you, if you don’t then who will?
 
I will ask again.
 
How are you doing?
 
Ross

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What people don’t tell you.

Do you want to know what they don’t tell you about those 12 week transformations you see?
 
The person involved usually tried several times before to achieve the results they now have but they were missing a few vital things:
 
– Consistency
– Adherence in everything they were told to do
– A coach/trainer
– Knowledge of their previous failures
 
The last one is probably one of the more interesting points because people who often succeed the most are the ones who actually learnt from their failures and accepted them being their fault (9/10 times that is, there will always be exceptions yet most of the time it’s always on us when we fail).
 
Have you ever heard of the 5 stages of grief?
 
– Denial
– Anger
– Bargaining
– Depression
– Acceptance
 
Do you know that people actually go through this sequence for a great many things. Take a fitness transformation for example:
 
– They deny they could have ever achieved it
– They get angry because of what got in the way: work, partners etc
– They start to make deals with themselves such as “When I get XYZ done I will do this for me.” and they don’t follow them through
– They sadly fall in to their old habits and potentially seek solace in food or alcohol
– Eventually they accept they just gave up and carry on with life… or at least that’s what we hope.
 
From experience people get stuck in the depression part of the cycle and occasionally fall back to the first stage and keep repeating 1 through 4, this is not nice to see but it does happen, sadly.
 
Take a second and ask yourself honestly, has this been/ever been or is this you?
 
If the above question rings true, don’t worry about it. Many of us have been there, even the people you admire/aspire to be like have been there. The only difference is being honest with yourself and accepting past failures and WHY they happened (chances are it was our own fault 98% of the time), that way you can let it go and seek the help you need.
 
I know you can achieve your goal but before you start making a change to your body you should make the change mentally first.
 
Enjoy,
Ross

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Give yourself a break once in a while.

With Christmas Right around the corner there will be a lot of indulgence and while I have no issues with this it can lead to a rather negative/vicious circle for some people.
 
You know the one…
 
They want said food, they don’t only eat what will satisfy them, they gorge because for that moment they lose an inhibitions. This can even last for the entire month of December which isn’t a problem for those who are happy with that decision, however for those who will be rife with guilty it can be quite damaging.
 
After this period the new years comes in and the same people go hell for leather in the gym and strip back their nutrition to the bones, this only leads to physical and mental burn out which is not good at all. In fact it’s quite a bad place to be in because it can start the year off with a negative thought process and pattern that ends up being repeated.
 
What pattern?
 
– Think being ‘thin’ ‘toned’ ‘any other fad word’ will make you happy – Achieve said goal but feel terrible (and become potentially ill) because of all you’ve denied yourself – Let loose and eat EVERYTHING – Feel guilty – Repeat process –
 
I see this happen year after year, not only at Christmas specifically, it happens all year round and it’s something we need to help people break out of. No easy task, sadly.
 
My advice?
 
Before you make a choice be sure that you’re completely happy with it and the outcome, if you know deep down this is not the case then perhaps you might want to reconsider.
 
If you find you might not be abel to do it on your own then seek out help, there is nothing wrong with asking for help.
 
Remember to enjoy Christmas guilt free, don’t make choices you will regret, just ones you will look back and smile over.
 
Enjoy
Ross

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Deep for a Monday

Remember Who You Are…
Morning Guys,
Are you one of the people that has tried so hard to be an ‘individual’ that you’ve ended up being just like everyone else?
If you open one of your social media apps you will find that there are at least a handful of people on your feed that are talking about how they’ve made changes, achieve results, become a better version of them etc, all in an attempt to be different and change who they were, while ironically ending up just like all the people they used to dislike.
I’m all for people making a change, getting results and gaining self-confidence and self-worth but never at the expense of who they are as a person.
You will find that those who attempt to change their physical look to make themselves feel better mentally often end up feeling worse and unfortunately lose themselves, for lack of a better word to describe it.
These people become obsessed with their new identity and give up everything that made them an individual, that basically made them who they were. Their online image… It’s now who they are and if they were to lose it the false and fluffy reality of Facebook/Instagram Likes and virtual validation would disappear and we just can’t have that happen now, can we.
Take a moment and think back to where you started your journey and where you are now.
How have you changed?
Do you still hold your core values/beliefs/interests or are you now living as the character you created to make yourself happy for that brief moment?
It’s understandable that people mature and grow over the years but there is a difference between that and changing who you are for other people so that you will feel accepted or receive the validation you so seek. Why do you think there are a lot of people who on paper, or rather, on screen seem to have it all and be ecstatically happy yet in real life they are hounded by depression and other such alignments. Just think about that for a second.
If you have a goal I want you to work hard and achieve it, just don’t do it at the expense of losing yourself in the process. Remember that how you look will always be the least interesting thing about you.
Enjoy,
Ross

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Do You Listen?

Morning Guys,

Have you ever really listened to your body? I mean really listened to it? Do you even know what it’s saying?

The skill of listening to your body is not an easy one to master, it takes time, effort and most of all patience to learn your own language. If you really listen you will know if you really do have that extra rep or if you need a de-load, perhaps it’s a case of some more sleep. Whichever it is, listening t your body will reveal all.

    How can you learn what your body is really telling you? Unfortunately there is no easy answer, it simply takes time and practice. A great way would be to meditate, to become aware of all your thoughts and deal with them one at a time, then, once you have control over the mind, or at least acceptance of your thoughts you can start to listen to your body and how it feels.

The best way to start meditation is to find a place outside you can go alone and start to focus on your thoughts and absorbing everything around you and become aware. After you become aware you can start to hear what your body has to say, you might find out you’re not fatigued from too much training but rather not enough sleep because of a mineral deficiency. As crazy as that sounds it’s more true than many would ever want to believe.

Try this for me today. Take 5min and simply sit and try to see what your body is feeling, the little aches it has, the stiffness, the hunger for certain foods (not ego craving, actually craving). It will take time but once you start being able to listen to your body you will find you now just when to go all out and when to back off, thus finding yourself imbued with a new sense of self.

Enjoy,
Ross

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