Tag Archives: success

Back to the basics for us all.

What is there to write about training anymore?
The internet is filled with so much content, it’s almost impossible to read it all.
Keeping this in mind it’s probably best to keep things simple and hopefully point you in the right direction and to do that we need to circle back around to the basics and the simple sciences of training.
What should you look to circle back to first?
– Energy Systems
These are essential for understanding how the body works and what fuel is used for what training styles (aerobic – fat, anaerobic – glucose etc), here is a nice resource for that:
Next it has to be muscle anatomy.
– Muscle Structure
Once you know how they work you can conclude what style of training is best for your goal. Here are a couple of links:
One last topic that is crucial to have a basic underrating of in training is hormones.
– Testosterone, Cortisol and everything in-between.
This is a massive topic yet it’s one people ignore all the time and it really shouldn’t be. Your hormones are influenced not only by training but also your nutrition, sleep, life style and mach more, thus it is worth knowing how they work and what they do.
Above are some starting links to help you on your way, however it’s worth remembering that the body is a complex organism and if you don’t want to do the digging yourself then you’ll do well to hire a coach/trainer who can do it all for you.
Remember the basics, without those nothing else can be understood.

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6 short lessons of success.

Everyone want’s to succeed, yet not everyone will… Unless you take heed of these sage words.
1 – It doesn’t happen overnight, there’s always a lot of work that goes on behind the scenes.
2 – If you’re not upsetting people you’re not pushing the boundaries you need to.
3 – Success doesn’t care if you’ve had a bad day, feel ill or made a mistake, regardless of circumstance success will still demand sacrifice for it’s fruits.
4 – Hitting the pinnacle is a privilege, not a right.
5 – If not you, it will be someone else.
6 – You’ll have to keep doing more and more and more to boost your skill because no one starts out good at anything and if they do they never amount to anything because they take that gift fro granted.
Chances are you ready know the above, most people do yet they still feel they’re entitled to some sort of success when this is not the case, nor has it ever been. If you want something you’d better be prepared to work your ass off for it.

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Volume goals and low reps.

Morning all,
High reps, low sets are popular for getting in a lot of volume, however you can do the same by using submit weights and lower reps and we shall look at why you should be doing this.
Why use low reps higher sets to hit a daily volume goal?
1 – You use a higher % of 1RM – say 85% (a technical 6RM) for multiple sets of 2-3 reps until you hit perhaps a 50 rep target. 16-25 sets required.
2 – It stimulates more muscle due to it being a higher relative load, more muscle fibres used means more adaptive need, this means more progress.
3 – Lifting heavier weights is more fun and provides what is called ‘functional hypertrophy’ – essentially you’re strong and look good, rather than just looking good with nothing back it up.
4 – It’s way more fun.
Here is a simple structure to use:
High volume workout – 80%+ 1RM – 50 reps – 3 lifts per session: these don’t have to be the sam lift each workout, cover the following movement patterns across the week for optimal results.
– Full body – snatch, clean/jerk etc)
– Loaded carry – farmers walk, sand bag carry and so on
– Hinge – deadlift
– Squat – umm well… a squat, obviously
– Pull – Chin up or row perhaps
– Push – Press or a dip
^^ The options are endless, just pick a moment and find a lift to go with it.
Train movements for miracles.
Moderate volume workout – 80%+ 1RM – 30 reps – 3 lifts per session
Low volume workout – 80%+ 1RM – 10 reps – 3 lifts per session
This volume cycling will allow you to get some much needed recover if you start feeling beaten up, you can utilise the H-M-L as you see fit. A weekly loading high look like this:
M – H
T – M
W- L – or off
T – H
F- M
S – M
S – L or off
Aim for 80-210 reps of volume per movement per week.
Make sense?
If you lift heavier weights more often you will find a lot of benefit to strength, muscle mass, fat loss and less boredom from doing endless high rep pump sets.

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5 Step Starting Process

Calories in,
Calories out,
That’s what Fat Loss is all about.
^^ Essentially this is how you lose fat or gain it.
There are plenty of ways you can approach nutrition, however experience has shown that the simpler you keep it the more chance for success you will have.
If you follow these 5 steps you’ll be off to a great start.
1 – Buy a diary to track what you eat daily
2 – Write down everything you eat/drink
3 – Honestly assess the amount/quality of what you consume
4 – Pick one element to start changing – EG: smaller portions
5 – Stick with this change for 3 weeks then add the next change
Chaining your nutritional habits requires a commitment and most importantly a lifestyle change. If you break this down in to small manageable chunks you’ll find they are easier to stick with.
Can you ever go back to the nutrition you had?
Yes you can, you will also find your health/body back in the same place it was as too, keep that in mind.

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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.

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One Way to Sure Success

Success is something that everyone wants in some way. Whether that success is in the form of admiration, respect, more muscle, a faster 10k time or even just to gain more self confidence, success is success and everyone deserves it.
I often get asked by people about how to succeed or what the best way to success is and over the years I have found that this missing element is often what hold people back and causes them to lose their way.
Some of you will like this answer, others won’t, but that doesn’t stop it from being one of the most important factors in getting to the goal you desire.
Here is it:
Ask for help when you need it and accept responsibility for for the effort you put in.
Okay, that’s two things but both equally important.
Asking for help will give you the opportunity to avoid the pitfalls that other people have fallen in to. Accepting responsibility for the effort you put in will hold you accountable, if you give anything less than YOUR 100% then my friends you will struggle every step of the way.
Take heed in these words because they come from experience. I have made more mistakes than I care to admit, some have cost nothing and others came with a price tag far above what I wanted to pay but that’s life. Learn from those around you and don’t be afraid to ask for help, it doesn’t take anything away from your success, after all, it doesn’t matter what route you take to the top of the mountain when in the end the view will always be the same.

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Answers of the Past

Morning Guys,

What was your favourite subject as School?

Mine was PE, but for the purpose of this post we shall imagine it was History. Not that I didn’t like History, I just found PE more fun.

If there was one thing I learnt from History lessons though it was that there have been literally hundreds of thousands of people that have either done what you’re attempting to do or failed at what you’re about to do in the exact same way you’re about to do it.

This humbling lesson seems to be ignored by a great many people who seem to think they will be the one to make the failed attempt a success through the exact same methods that didn’t work the first time around.

*Face Palm.

Don’t get me wrong. I am all for self realisation and learning things the hard way because that might be the way you need to learn said lesson, however, some common sense, logic and research in to the past will hep you avoid making the same mistakes/decisions of your forbearers.

Why is it a good idea to look to the past, apart from to see what didn’t work.

Have you figured it out yet?

You look to the past not only to see what failed, but what succeeded as well!

The chances are that if something has worked in the past and continued to do so multiple times over, again and again, then the probability of it still working now are quite high. Only a fool would not use such valuable information.

What was the point of this post?

The answers to your questions today and even your questions in the future many, and will quite often be found by looking in to the past.


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Missed Moments

“If you were looking for the opportune moment… that was it.” – Captain Jack Sparrow

One of my favourite quotes of all time, seriously, it really is. It sums up life perfectly and I will tell you why.

Will loses the apple of his affection, the reason he gets up everyday, his love. This prompts him to take action and with the hilarity and help of Captain Jack he find his way to a hidden island and eventually rescues his hearts desire. Once the action has subsided they share a brief and moment that was only possible because Will took action. This is the moment they have both been waiting for and guess what he does… Yep, he bottles it. This immediately followed by the sage words of Captain Jack. However upon returning to their safe haven Will decided to take action once again and not only saves Jack from he gallows but he gets the girl too. Thus a happy ending for all.

What does that have to do with real life?

A great many people spend their life waiting for the right moment to do XY or Z. Often they will say “I am just waiting for it to feel right” or “I will do this first then XYZ” this is procrastination at its finest. Too many waste their time waiting for a miracle or the right moment when in reality you have to create those small miracles and perfect moments. If you don’t someone else will and you’ll be forever kicking yourself, trust me on that.

So the next time you find yourself making an excuse to justify waiting for the opportune moment to make the magic of change happen, I suggest you slap yourself in the face and remember that the only opportune moments are the ones YOU create.

You can waste your money, your resources and even your health and eventually get them back one way or another, but once you waste your time it’s forever gone. Remember that.

Enjoy, Ross


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Do You Really Need That Specialist Exercise?

Walkouts, Partial Reps, Banded Moments, Movements with Chains, Lockout Reps, Board Pressing, the list of specialist exercises is numerous but do you really need them?

Too many people get caught up in doing things they have no real need for. I am guilty of this on the odd occasion but found that it only severed to hinder my progress in the long run because there was no need for the specialist movements.
You will find these types of exercises common for high level power lifters but they serve little purpose for us normal folk. If I had to give people some variations of lets say the big 3 I would suggest the following:
– Pause Squats
– Front Squats
– Box Squats
– Paused Bench
– Narrow Grip Bench
– Pressing Overhead or High Incline
– 1/2 – 1 inch Deficit Deadlifts
– 2-4 inch Block Pulls
– Snatch Grip Deadlift
– Overhand Deadlift
That’s pretty much it. While it’s nice and quite fun to try some of the specialist exercises there is little to no need unless you’re squatting/deadlifting 3xbw and benching 2xbw. The variations I’ve suggested will be more than enough to help keep you busy for months if you rotate them properly.
Do you need some guidance on a program too?
Warm Up Sets x4 at 3-5 reps (40,60,70,77%)
Week 1 – 10×1 + 70-80% back off AMRAP set -10min
Week 2 – 5×2 + 70-80% back off AMRAP set -10min
Week 3 – 3×3 + 70-80% back off AMRAP set -10min
Week 4 – 2×5 + 70-80% back off AMRAP set -10min
*increase weight and start over.
*2 lifts per day – EG Squat/Row, Deadlift/Press
*Lower body would work better with this programs set rep progression.
*Upper body = Volume or Ramping, try 8×8 on the volume with only 30 seconds rest on upper body pressing/pulling movements or Ramp up to a 3-5RM (meaning you do 3-5 reps and add weight each set until you hit technical failure, then you’re done).
An example day might be as follows:
Workout 1 – Squat/Pull Up
Warm Up Sets – Paused Squat x4 at 3-5 reps (40,60,70,77%)
A1 – Paused Squat – 10×1 – 100kg + 80kg AMRAP (10min time limit)
B1 – Pull Up – 8×8 – Wide Grip Body Weight/Weighted or Pull Down
*Optional C1 – Ab Roll Out – 1×12
Workout 2 – Deadlift/Press
Warm Up Sets – Overhand Deadlift x4 at 3-5 reps (40,60,70,77%)
A1 – Overhand Deadlift – 10×1 – 100kg + 80kg AMRAP (10min time limit)
B1 – Press – 5RM Ramp Start with Overhead Press and hit 5RM (You can alternate your Pressing movement to your own personal desire, one day might be overhead press, the next time around it might be bench and so on.)
*Optional C1 – Ab Roll Out – 1×12
A weeks training might look like this:
Monday – Workout 1
Tuesday – Workout 2
Wednesday – Off
Thursday – Workout 1 – Front Squat/Pull Down Neutral Close Grip
Friday – Workout 2 – Snatch Grip Deadlift/Incline Press
Saturday – Off
Sunday – Off
Repeat last weeks exercise selection, keep weights the same on SQ/DL but move on to week 2’s reps (5×2).
There is nothing stopping you from adding in a sprint day on Saturday or some CV just regulate the intensity so that is doesn’t disrupt your recovery and adaptation phases.
In the world of lifting it’s best not to try and run before you can walk. Learn the basic movements and learn then well, then once you’ve started to hit the upper limits of your natural strength (around 3xBW SQ/DL & 2xBW Bench) then it will be worth adding in some specialist exercises to help you past your sticking points.

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