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07/05/2013

Useful fitness?

You have heard me rant about doing something useful with your burgeoning fitness levels. Last weekend was goal 2 for the year for me personally and a definite achievement for more than 2000 corporate participants in the annual BRW Supersprint triathlon on the Gold Coast. Congratulations to everyone who put their bodies and minds to the test. Whilst this was not a hugely long affair everyone in it still had to train up for it over the preceding weeks and then haul themselves through water, on bikes and finally putting one foot in front of the other for a significant period of time. This ‘training for something’ thing is a great tactic. I recommend it because, whilst it is nice to think we are motivated by health and being good to our body, sometimes the basic desire to do a thing ‘better than last time’ or ‘do something for the first time’ is a great impetus for action. I had my good mate of close to 40 years come up from Sydney and play the role of two people and do it twice! Talking of useful fitness this bloke is running from Brisbane to Sydney in early August to raise (the goal is $100K) for Cambodian Vision to help restore sight for hundreds of people unlucky enough to be born in the wrong place at the wrong time. Check out his inspirational story at facebook if you would like to know more.
30/04/2013

What is this intermittent fasting thing?

There is a buzz around intermittent fasting if you haven’t already noticed. This video is a first in the series explain the science behind this controversial subject. I would be interested in your thoughts. At first it sounds all wrong but check this out.
30/04/2013

Changing habits, changing lives.

I attended a ‘weight loss’ conference last Friday. There were some industry experts there including the author of a fantastic book on nutrition of this blog’s title, Cyndi O’Meara. More on this amazing book in a minute. This conference was super interesting as professionals from psychology, naturopathy, chiropractic, personal training, nutrition, exercise physiology and life coaching from around Australia got together to tackle the issue of how we as a nation are going to stem the rising tide of the obesity epidemic. No one can argue with the appropriateness of this term ‘epidemic’ with 62% of all Australians either overweight or obese. It is said by 2020 that it is likely this number will increase to 80%! If you don’t think this is going to impact every aspect of how we live then you would be very mistaken. Think budget costs for health care exploding as we deal with more and more lifestyle related diseases, think remodeling the design of planes, buses etc with bigger seats, think drug company profits, think depression and the effect on families….. think catastrophe. Anyway this article is not about the conference (that is another blog entry) but about the book, Changing habits, changing lives. You really need to read this book. I only just got it on Friday and I am close to finishing it. Once caveat is this though, the concepts will challenge you and if you aren’t open minded there is a danger of throwing up your arms and saying, this is just too hard. I really hope you don’t do that […]
19/04/2013

Grass roots change

I attended the Business Summit for Fitness industry professionals in Sydney last week at what is known as the Filex Convention.  There were some great speakers about various aspects of the industry and the future of fitness in Australia. Some numbers were mentioned. Under 15% of people in Australia currently exercise regularly and over 60% of Australians are now considered overweight or obese meaning there are A LOT of people heading in the wrong direction. One of our industry leaders Greg Oliver spoke about the lobbying efforts of our peak body, Network Fitness to the Australian Government to encourage politicians to look at tax reform to incentivise people to start moving more. As crude as it may seem, the hip pocket motivates. Just look at what the baby bonus did for population growth and ….plasma TV sales. I am a little cynical I know but the Government needs to be trying some serious tactics to turn this thing around. There were two factors identified as a good starting point from a Government policy perspective. The first is FBT for businesses for any fitness/health initiatives for employees. What message is it sending to tax businesses for helping their staff get healthier? The second one is the common sense proposal of making personal investment in anything health/fitness related tax deductible and or contributing towards reducing health insurance premiums for individuals smart enough to be investing in their own health. The sooner the government realises (and resolves to implement some serious strategies to address) that the cost of being  overweight, obese and or  […]
19/04/2013

Brain body connection

This is a subject I love which is why I studied both sports science and psychology. If you have any interest in the importance of how the healthy functioning of your brain is directly connected to your physical actions then read this article about a recent presentation by world renowned neuroscientist, Paul Taylor. He talks specifically about the top 5 tips for CEO’s in creating and sustaining peak performance. He has some interesting things to say as well how the daily rituals we have in terms of what we eat, how much we move and how we manage stress can have a profound affect on the likelihood of suffering Alzeimers disease and the generally quality and level of performance we achieve in our lives. It is very interesting stuff.    
16/04/2013

Another year….

The odometer on the old body recently clicked over another year. It is times like these that you tend to reappraise and cast your eye over the year that was and as a guy, ALL the years gone to this date. “Am I where I thought I would be at age 47?” “Have I done what I thought I would do?” And perhaps a little desperately…”How much time do I have left to fit the rest in?” I guess all this get’s put under the microscope a little more when you get a letter in the post (almost on the day of my birthday) saying quite jauntily that “since you are now in the 45-49 year old age bracket, you have been selected for a regular health check (lucky me!) as things start to go bung at this time” I made up the last bit but that was definitely the implication when I spoke to the nurse today. Well I had that check up and all seems okay at the moment thankfully but it get’s you thinking. Life is this precious resource and there is just so much to do. If you are 40+ guy, what are you doing to ensure the second half of your life goes well? It’s no surprise that I would be suggesting regular exercise as part of that preventative plan. Or, do you wait for an issue and ask for a prescription from your doc to ‘fix’ it. My goal is to be listing vitamins I take rather than medications when I get to my […]
16/04/2013

Nutrition for your kids

This is a very emotive subject and one that is super important for the future of our society. Read this post from precision nutrition to understand the best strategies for giving your children the best chance to be the healthiest they can be. It is very poignant given the focus of the Biggest Loser this year. The bottom line is that kids will do what they see not what you tell them.
03/04/2013

Super shakes

If you can get past any hang ups you have with a guy talking with what seems like an American accent (he’s Canadian if that helps) and using the suffix ‘dot carm‘ in a sentence, then watch this short video on how to put together a Super Shake. We use the Precision Nutrition system as our ‘go – to’ resource for nutrition information and coaching. I have looked for a long time and this approach just makes sense. So get over your suspicion of anything that might set off your ‘cheese’ alert and watch the video on how to put something super nutritious together fast. We are all rush rush rush these days but believe me this will help. Let me know what you think.
03/04/2013

Just in case you were getting confused…

I posted last week about the Biggest Loser. The myths and misconceptions continue unabated and yeah I’m still watching….. But just so we are clear. Don’t try to trade off calories on the treadmill for the extra 20-30kgs you are wearing. You don’t have enough time to do this and you will be bored before you even burn up the proverbial drop in the ocean and or get injured in the process. So am I saying that calories don’t matter? Well Yes and No. Yes because what you think is a calorie probably isn’t and No because an excess of energy consumed WILL become stored fat. SO WHAT IS THE ANSWER THEN MR PERSONAL TRAINER!!! Don’t worry I can feel your frustration. But here it is in a nutshell- (keep in mind that these are general guidelines and may not suit your particular circumstances or need specific explanation. Consult with a professional to clarify what is right for you personally. We would be a good first contact!) Increase protein and  reduce simple carbohydrate intake. Eat healthy fats. Eat a stack of vegetables always. Start moving more in general – even 4 dedicated sessions of training each week will amount to little for some genetically challenged souls when the other 98% of time is spent sitting (on the bus to work and on the seat at work all day and then on the bus again going home). Build core strength as a first priority then progress to functional strength (i.e. useful movement). After this aim to be progressive in your strength […]