Monthly Archives: August 2014

Don’t just wing it, get a structured programme!

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In my last blog I spoke about the importance of setting goals to help reach your fitness targets.

I wanted to write todays blog to make sure that it had really hit home with you all! By now you should have taken a step back and had a long hard look at your training programme, did it make you realise that perhaps you don’t have as much structure as you thought?

Lets take a look at general weight training should take the form of a very basic structure such as this.weight training. Why are you doing it? To look bigger? To be stronger? To have more power? All of these goals require different training regimes! A lot of people that do weights want a little bit of everything for all the major muscle groups and so tend to simply hit a different muscle group each day, aiming for the same reps every time and then record progress by how many reps they can improve by each week. Chances are doing this will give you some improvement but eventually you will plateau and thats where the importance of a structure comes in!

Basic conditioning (what your probably already doing!), Hypertrophy, Strength, Power. In that order. Think about it, how can a muscle become more powerful if it can’t already move an already heavy weight for any given time? Then go back another step, how can a muscle become stronger if it doesn’t have the muscle fibres to develop? Finally how can a muscle grow if it doesn’t already have a basic level of conditioning?

Hopefully this has got you thinking again! Happy training!

Set Goals!

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Why do you train? We all do it for a reason. Some do it to lose weight, some to build muscle, others just to feel good! Whatever the reason to be able to achieve what we want from training we have to set goals.
I’m always amazed by the answer I get when I ask people why they train. The first part of the answer is easy! We’ve covered the two main reasons already. However if I then ask people how they are going about getting the results they want you would think I was asking the million pound question on ‘who wants to be a millionaire?’ Generally the answer will be something along the lines of ‘I do a few classes,’ or ‘I lift weights’ or  simply just ‘I run!’ That’s great and planned in the right way all of those things will help but just having a general stab at a few things a couple of times a week won’t get you any closer to your results. What’s more than likely you become frustrated that you don’t get the immediate results you want and move on to something else or worst still give up completely!
Training doesn’t need to be complicated but is does need to be planned! Before starting out in a new routine decide what you want to get out of it and then think about how you’re going to get there. I’ve never met anyone who has simply started training with one big aim at the end of it and succeeded! Break the target down into realistic goals and then if you need to break it down again!
If you’re not sure how, don’t be afraid to ask a trainer for advice how to do this. Any decent trainer will be happy to offer advice. Some even offer remote training programmes where we don’t hold your hand through every training session but plan each routine meticulusly to help guide you right up to your goal! If you think this is for you check out our remote training programme on the shop page.

Nourish your lumbar discs

The discs in your lower back (lumbar discs) do not have a direct blood supply so are prone to dehydration conditions such as degeneration of the discs, fragmenting discs and osteoarthritis. These conditions can be very painful and very debilitating resulting in stiffness, inflexibility and loss of mobility. To help keep these discs nourished and prevent these spinal conditions movement is the key. The specific movement you want to be doing regularly is pelvic tilts. Those of you who take part in pilates will know this very important move but for those of you that don’t watch the video below. Pelvic tilts encourage synovial fluid to the vertebrae of the lumbar region providing the discs with lubrication and nourishment, the exercise can be done in several different positions as illustrated in the video. If you are struggling with back pain feel free to contact us or check out our back care package to see how we can help you.

Exercise to improve mental health

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Exercise has been shown to lower risk of suffering mental health problems as well as helping people already suffering.

Studies have shown that exercise can reduce feelings of anxiety, depression and negative moods. Exercise changes the levels of serotonin in the brain (the happy hormone) enhancing the feeling of wellbeing and positivity and reduces the stress hormones making you feel better both physically and mentally.

Moderate exercise for 30 minutes 4-5 times a week has been shown to improve mental health problems such as improved mood, better sleeping patterns, lower stress levels, less anger and frustration, increased sense of achievement, improved focus and motivation, less mental and physical fatigue and improved appetite.

 

 

Strong glutes, strong pelvic floor

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The pelvic floor is designed to be supple, taut and lengthened. If you have a dysfunctional pelvic floor it will be tight, weak and loose. If the pelvic floor is tight it pulls the sacrum forwards out of alignment leading to a tucked under bum position which then leads to slackness and creating weakness. The best way to lengthen the pelvic floor enabling it to be taut and supple is to strengthen your glutes. Strong glutes (bum muscles) pulls the sacrum back into the correct position placing the pelvic floor in a lengthened state. Therefore the stronger your bum the stronger your pelvic floor. The best exercise to work the pelvic floor in its optimum position is squats. Watch the video below for how to perform the perfect squat to recruit your pelvic floor. Happy squatting

http://youtu.be/Sfes2-dKVOg

@Varietyfitness
Fitness professional, Pilates and Yoga studio owner, sports therapist and nutritionist. Love anything fitness related #Pilates #yoga #Macclesfield