Tag Archives: thoughts

A deep fitness question for y’all –

Can you really be happy without getting tangible results?

If so, why?

I make no apologies for being someone driving by what is.

While ‘results’ is a word that is open for interpretation as it can mean anything to anyone, and people will often shift the goal posts to fit this when needed, especially when they’ve failed to achieve physical results they change the meaning of the word to them to be more of a subjective & emotional one.

Essentially giving themselves an eternal out.

People in my experience don’t like things to be black & white.

It means they’d have to accept failure, not being good enough and all those other tough emotions that come within ‘the resistance’ which make people feel bad.

Can people really be happy without some form of physical result from the gym?

Yes is the obvious answer, I’m just curious as to why.

Now most people will think that this is in relation to doing it for everyone else’s gratification or appeasement and that couldn’t be further from my truth.

We don’t need to do anything for anyone else, only ourselves.

A harsh truth yet one that has seen us evolve to the highly intelligent and depressed beings we now are.

Why wouldn’t someone an tot be strong both physically & mentally.

Have a body akin to that of the heroes we see in comic books and on the big screen?

What is so wrong with having the desire to be warriors in a garden, why do we have to weaken ourselves so that those that choose to be weak don’t feel inadequate or like lesser beings?

Realistically no one can make you feel anything you don’t give them the power to allow you to feel.

People can hate, call you names, and do much worse, yet unless you give them permission to break your will none of it will really matter, so why not choose the ‘best life’ that you champion?

Or is that just something you say because it’s a lie that makes you sound good?

All of these questions, they will not ever really get a good answer because no one really wants to put a target on their back by having an opinion these days.

Well, unless you’re bitter & cynical like me.

My friends, you have one life so why not grow strong instead of old?

Take charge of what you want and make it happen instead of letting the worthless opinions of the sensitive high you down and keep you at their level?

Why don’t you actually do as you say and become the best version of yourself, not the one you think will please society.

^^ The irony of the ‘individual’ is that they don’t actually want to be different or in fact individual because to be alone means to suffer and struggle, persecuted for being that which people don’t understand and as such fear – different.

Even my words are not really my own.

Lingering wills from people far wiser I’ve heard talk and not even known that a seed of thought got planted, as such I will close with this –

“So what if I’m a puppet. Once upon time…. You were too.”

What are results to you, honestly?

Enjoy,
Ross

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Gym Free

Soon I am to be without a gym.
 
The place I currently train is set to close, it has had a good run however as with all good things it must come to an end.
 
A few good memories have been had at this simple place.
 
You’d find the beauty of this particular gym in the fact it had very little kit and very limited weight (200kg ish in plates, total), a pull up bar, TRX, small section of dumbbells (2-20kg) and 2 DAP cable machine.
 
Honestly it made for some of the most productive training I’ve had in years.
 
It also helped break my addictive mindset.
 
Personally I enjoy doing 3 movements per training session.
 
This seems to be the right amount of work that allows a solid focus with ample variety while also cutting out any chance of bullshit and exercise fodder.
 
Junk volume became a thing of the past.
 
Typically sessions were about 45-60min, if time was short only the main movement would be done, thus resulting in a one lift training session.
 
The other two lifts tended to be accessory, unless I felt like doing something more taxing.
 
My most favoured one lift sessions:
 
Deadlifts
Squats
Presses
Rows
Pull/Chin Ups
 
When the main lift didn’t feel like it was enough some ultra basic superset tactics would be utilised:
 
Front Squat & Straight Leg DL
Sumo DL & Floor Press
Press & Pull Up
 
The typical session would look like this:
 
100x Rows (bodyweight, bar or DB)
Main lift – 45min of S/B/DL/P
100x Reverse Flies*
 
*Alternated session to session with tricep work
 
Yep, back would be done first and last, mainly for postural purposes and some feeling of the posterior chain.
 
I’m also not adverse to doing a few hundred kettlebell swings in a day (or perhaps 100 snatches) just because I feel like it, the posterior chain is king and needs to be treated as such.
 
It’s not much, at least it’s honest though.
 
You’ve now had an insight into the training I do.
 
There is less emotional attachment to specific movements these days, for that I’m thankful.
 
Training is just training at the end of the day.
 
If you don’t squat for 6 months no one is going to care, not really. That doesn’t mean you won’t train your legs in some way shape of from, it just means you wont necessarily do it by squatting.
 
Oh yes, you don’t need to train in the classic body building or Frankenstein method (by body part).
 
You can choose to train the way you desire.
 
There are not training police. No underground triad that will cut off the tip of your little finger for not training like a body builder (they only do that if you dishonour/fail them, phew).
 
You may be aware my philosophy of training evolved.
 
It was once about doing it all,now it’s about simply doing better.
 
Get really really good at something, or a few things, take them to their limit then be happy and give them a break and do something entirely different.
 
You know when it’s time to give something away (movement/exercise wise) when you start to get emotionally attached to it.
 
Ideally you give it away before this happens.
 
One way to hep you do this is to find a gym that has very little to offer in the way of kit because in that you’ll find it’s true gift, freedom.
 
Remember this the next time you’re presented a choice.
 
Instead of choosing fashion (creature comforts, shiny kit and all the trimmings).
 
Choose freedom.
 
Enjoy,
Ross

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Do we even need to train?

We get told there are things we have to do in regards to training, and in regards to specific goals it’s 100% accurate, however for general life it’s more like set of guidelines.
 
The goal of all life is death.
 
Well, avoiding it for as long as possible is what most desire.
 
To achieve this you need optimal health.
 
Does this necessarily mean you’ll be able to run a marathon, deadlift 3xBW or do 10 rounds in the ring with Tyson, no it probably doesn’t.
 
When it comes to your training do you ever ask yourself what is it you actually need to life a full and fruitful life?
 
Then I suppose that begs the question of if you want a long life (quantity) or a life filled with adventure, memories and learning (quality).
 
🤔🤔🤔
 
Once you know what it is that you desire, your training can reflect that.
 
In general life we can say that realistically we may need three type of strength – lifting, carrying, getting up.
 
As for CV, well the need is to be able to walk for extended periods of time, at potential pace without getting winded.
 
Pretty simple really.
 
You can achieve this many ways.
 
That being said, one of your life goals might be to have an epic physique, godly strength, skills galore or generally be an all round badass, if so then you’ll need to dial in some specifics.
 
There isn’t much we need to do in this life, especially fitness/training related.
 
Before you go down a rabbit hole be sure to ask yourself why you’d choose to go down it and what it will do for you in the long run that when you look back you can say without hesitation – “Totally worth it.”
 
Choose your path for you, otherwise you’ll end up going down someone else’s.
 
You should investigate this thoroughly.
 
Enjoy,
Ross

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A creature of not letting go

Creature comforts, that’s all they are and yet you won’t let them go. Even the detrimental ones.
 
Please do tell me why.
 
Be these your supplements for training, binge watching habits or destructive food choices, do tell me why you can’t let them go.
 
I too had these… Have these, although most have been given away and the realisation they were no longer of any use was accepted a couple still hang on.
 
The reason they’re there for me is nothing other than comfort, protection and the satiation of a lingering childhood ego the has yet to fade into the back of my memories to be forgotten and replaced by something better.
 
Growth take times, yet the first step will often be looking deeply at what we do and understanding why.
 
Knowing plenty of people who willing get stuck in a loop is inherently fascinating to me.
 
Why would someone choose suffering, stagnation and on occasion regression over growth and moving forwards?
 
What emotional tie to do they to this ‘thing’, because that’s all our attachments really are in the end, emotions that hold on to things that no longer serve a purpose.
 
Are yours because of self imposed punishment, an inability to forgive yourself for your past mistakes or maybe it’s something as simple as denial.
 
Questions worth some of your time, although ultimately you’ve no need to listen to me or entertain/consider what I say, this is because I’m not the boss of you, in fact I’m no one in the grand scheme of things, yet that won’t stop me from being forever curious as to why it is people, we, do what we do.
 
You should investigate this thoroughly.
 
Enjoy,
Ross

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An Attitude for All

Recently I’ve been watching My Hero Academia.

As some of you may know, anime is something quite close to my heart because of the many times it’s helped me escape from the world.

Many lessons have been learned from all these fictional characters (who were all created by real people).

This recent choice got me thinking about why we all love superheroes.

Is it due to their ability to overcome any obstacle?
Perhaps because of the many powers they have?
Maybe it is the overwhelming moral compass?

Or is it because of something else?

Chances are it’s all of these things and more, yet to me, there is something else that matters even more.

Even if it’s not real and only in the context of the show you’re watching, it’s the fact they give us hope.

Hope to overcome any odds.

To keep moving forward no matter the struggle.

They make us feel like we’re not totally helpless in this life and if we are to truly take a stand, to keep moving forward we will be okay in the end.

Heroes are who we wish we could be, yet in real life, true heroism doesn’t get the rewards of glorification it does in the fictional one.

Yet even with this being the case, and no one ever noticed or said thank you, why wouldn’t you want to be a hero?

Worth some thought.

You can choose your actions, your life is yours so you make the best you can of it regardless of the hand dealt to you.

I shall leave you with this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VkjDWnZW_yA

Enjoy,
Ross

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Life is Chess, You are a pawn

“I do not wish for immortal glory. Nor to have my name etched in histories unbreakable stone. All that I seek is keep moving forwards, to become better. Not the best, just better because it’s all I can do in this life.”
 
In response – “So why don’t you then?”
 
How many times have you heard people talk a good game only to 180 on their own altruistic and nobel words.
 
It’s easy to talk the talk, yet actually putting one foot in front of the other, well that’s where shit gets hard.
 
So many are ‘could have beens’ in this life.
 
They waste their natural gifts because it’s easier to embrace the fantasy of ‘what if’ or ‘if only’ instead of embracing the bitter reality of ‘what is’.
 
A lot of people I know talk about what they want, some even go as far as getting it and then upon the realisation that it doesn’t solve all their problems they react in one of two ways.
 
– Stagnation
– Regression
 
Those who fall in to the comfort zone of the first try to live of their minor achievement for the rest of their days, and for a time it works yet eventually people get tired of listening to stories of their glory days because they’re so far in the past they’re not longer relevant.
 
The people who sink in to the sands of regression.
 
It is for those people I truly feel for.
 
Getting that which they sought the most, hoping it would fix everything only to find it didn’t and that intact the problem wasn’t something they could fix externally and that it was something deep inside all along.
 
Something that was broken, that needed to be accepted and perhaps even leg go of, alas it’s too late for that now.
 
In a panic they try to regain what they now feel is lost and try to regress to their former self, yet all the end up doing is becoming a shadow of that and fall even deeper in to their own self cerated abyss and hell.
 
Life is always going to be about choice.
 
With choice comes a direction and all that we can hope is that it takes us forwards.
 
True enough some will take us sideways, yet even those are better than staying still, however none can lead us backwards because like the retro games of the past you can only move forwards and that which came before is now cut off forever.
 
Unlike a game though life has no reset button and you have to live with your decision, like it or not that’s how life goes.
 
How many times have you wanted to go back?
 
Once, twice, hundreds?
 
In any of these lamenting moments did you ever stop and ask yourself why you wanted to go back?
 
Was it because that pain and suffer was familiar and that you’d developed just enough coping mechanisms to allow survival or was it because of something else, cowardice & fear perhaps?
 
My dear people who read these ramblings, do you resonate with any of the above or is it just me in my madness who has felt this?
 
Either way take heed of my words, you can only move forwards and regardless of wether you do or you don’t everything else will because time waits for no one.
 
Remember this.
 
Enjoy,
Ross

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Bike Ride & Prejudice.

As we bask in the glory of the sun, like moths to the flame the cyclists take to the road.
 
Now there’s never been a problem my end with them until now.
 
Clogging up my pavement with their lycra barely supporting their family jewels 😤
 
Nah I just kidding 😂
 
One thing the sun seems to help many achieve is extra daily activity, be that in the form of cycling, running, swimming, or any outdoor activity.
 
Personally whatever get’s people actually doing something productive in regards to exercise/training is most pleasing to me.
 
These days a great many are caught in the thought that this must be done in the gym.
 
Simply not true.
 
My preferred style of training is outside with kettlebells, sandbags, barbells, ropes (to climb), if it was in a classic sense of training.
 
A truly enjoyable form of training is one where you learn a great amount of skill with it, such as martial arts, movement or that kind of thing.
 
Blending the two can make for quite the enjoyable life.
 
You’ll also be pleasantly surprised at the results too.
 
One thing I’ve tried to teach many is that it’s less about training ABC to achieve XYZ.
 
It’s about deciding what life you want to live and living it.
 
Say you wish to live life X, then the results you’ll have in fitness health, potentially aesthetic and all that other stuff will be the byproduct of the life you live.
 
This often yields a vast amount of experiences that can touch your heart emotionally and end up being unforgettable.
 
Now that my friends is a life well lived.
 
Therefore choose well and if you find your choice isn’t working for you then change it.
 
Simples.
 
Enjoy,
Ross

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Fitness & the Mid-Life Crisis

Do you wonder what your ‘mid-life crisis’ is going to look like?

Could it end up being the classic mixture of getting tattoos, a entirely new wardrobe to regain lost rebellious youth and maybe a bike too.

I guess you could be one of those who leaves their partner, home and comfortable life for someone 10+ years younger and partying on school nights.

Working in fitness you’ll find you see this happen a lot.

People getting results and aesthetic change often being the catalyst.

While we say looks don’t matter they do, as does the attention that comes with them.

True enough some very unique people get a lot attention and yet they never seem to hold on to a persona or settle down.

The sad reason why is because such people are often seen as a fetish, you know something that you want to do behind closed doors yet wouldn’t want to be seen in the light of day with.

This doesn’t mean they’re a bad person or not worth anything else other than being a fetish, however that’s just how it goes.

Sadly I’ve seen it happen many many times over.

Same is true for those who once upon a time were the object of everyones desire & attention, able to pick and choose at will.

Yea that fades over time and they too are cast to the margin bin. From all perspectives it can be quite the knock to a persons confidence.

It won’t change anytime soon and as such the mid-life crisis will always be a thing.

They usually reignite some of the embers of attention that was once a roaring flame, and to some that’s enough, for now.

Of course this too will die out eventually.

Once that happens you’ll be left with a bike you never ride, tattoos that you don’t like and a head full of bad memories.

I’m sure you know someone who has had, or perhaps is going through this time in their life, maybe it all started when they began going to the gym.

Who knows, just some food for thought.

If you do happen across people in this situation try to understand it from their point of view and more importantly why they feel as they do.

Knowing how someone feels can be the biggest step in helping them, especially if you get it too.

Hopefully it will also help you avoid the same pitfall.

Enjoy,
Ross

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Are you the average man or woman?

Do you want to train for health, performance and to feel better because if that is the case keep reading.
 
Three things in the gym you should ideally be able to do.
 
Ladies:
 
1 – 1x Double Bodyweight Deadlift
2 – 5x Chin Ups
3 – 1x 3/4 Bodyweight Press
 
Gentlemen:
 
1 – 1x Double Bodyweight Deadlift
2 – 10x Pull Ups
3 – 1x Bodyweight Press
 
None of the above requires astronomical strength.
 
Hit the above though and chicness are you’ll have some good base results.
 
Say you struggle to achieve these then it can mean a few things, such as you might have been injured one upon a time, have a legitimate medical excuse that makes you exempt etc.
 
If you have no aliments (real ones), then it may mean this:
 
– You’re too heavy
– You’re too weak
 
Now a lot of people will get the hump reading this.
 
Some will scream and shout about their not being any cardio goal however I shall explain why there are none.
 
CV is easy to build.
 
(I’d recommend a sport, like boxing, BJJ, skipping etc)
 
Think about it logically for one moment, please.
 
You can go from couch to 5k in a matter of weeks, perhaps even train to run a marathon within 6months (I’ve known people to go form never doing any fitness to that feat, it was most impressive).
 
Yet when it comes to building strength you’ll find that shit takes a long time, especially if you’re very de-conditioned.
 
Strength, or base strength has a universal crossover to life.
 
As does mobility, as such here are three other things you should be able to do:
 
– Sit in a full ROM squat pain free for 5min
– Lay down, stand up, crawl and climb things pain free
– Pass all minimum ROM tests (google this)
 
Many will see me as overly harsh, other will know my intentions are good though.
 
Like a post I shared a few weeks ago about being abel to haul around a sandbag of your own bodyweight.
 
Ideally you should be able to carry it for at least 1min without any real trouble. get it to your shoulder and even over head too with not too much soul crushing effort.
 
^^ All of this will build decent CV levels by the way.
 
(If you want to build strength and CV use kettlebells)
 
We’ve become so sedentary.
 
All of the above seems like truly huge feats and they’re not.
 
Not really.
 
Investing in your own strength, mobility and base levels of conditioning will help stave off meeting Charon too soon.
 
Give it some thought.
 
Enjoy,
Ross

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What’s your doctrine?

In fitness you’ll find many tomes.

Each has its own unique benefits, limitations and place in the realm known as physical culture.

You can probably guess I’ve followed a few over the years.

Becoming embroiled in one thought process is easily done, especially if it’s spoken with enough conviction. In the 70’s we had body building, the 80’s had step, the 90’s was functions training and the last couple of decades brought us CrossFit & HIIT and more recently Movement Culture.

As mentioned above, all have their good points and in truth once you find one that keeps you consistently training you’ll feel great, or at least a part of something bigger than yourself.

I’ve personally been in the industry a fair while now, a literal lifetime when compared to the age of some young adults just stepping in to the field.

In this span I’ve seen trends come and go.

Plus there are a few things that have stayed and will always remain important.

  • Strength
  • Mobility & Movement
  • Health
  • Enjoyment (purpose)

You might love running, if so cool you go run just be aware of what running is lacking from the above (strength).

Perhaps you’re a powerlifter, great just be sure to fill in the missing gaps (health, mobility & movement).

I’m sure you can see where I’m going with this.

On a personal note I don’t really care what people do so long as they are doing it for the right reasons, that being it means something to them that is at the live of their very soul, none of this superficial bullshit, got no time for such pointless things.

Do you love what you do?

No, really, can you say without any doubt you love what you do (in the gym, this kinda applies for life as well – just saying).

If you have any hesitation or have to justify your answer then somethings not right.

You’ll find many a doctrine in fitness, ideal if you find one that have the elements mentioned above that’s the most optimal one, however it’s also rare.

Enjoy,
Ross

Oh, before I forget, it’s okay to create your own style you know. Learn from all the single views of the big picture and eventually you’ll have quite the impressive view to which you can then give back to the realm of fitness by creating something of your own.

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