Hiring a personal trainer

Hiring a personal trainer should not be too hard a task. Once you know what you are looking for. To ensure you find the right one I have offered a few items to consider.

It is getting to the time of year again when people are starting to think about the oncoming spring months. Now more than ever focusing on their current fitness, health and wellbeing.  It is the perfect time to start your fitness regime and consider hiring a personal trainer. Given that you have plenty of time to prepare yourself for the warmer months ahead. Hiring the services of good one can make a positive difference.

Having been with this industry as Claudefit personal training coming to 14 years. In addition, have been proactive with my own personal fitness and strength since 1988. The industry since has dramatically changed in many positive ways with now an abundance of choices. Getting you fitter, stronger and leaner are well within your reach, it is just a matter of knowing where to start.

If you are like me and past your late 40s. You are looking for someone who at the very least has a sound working knowledge in training people. You will also be expecting to be paying a professional who delivers results. A high level of service for your time, money and effort as you will be investing valuable time with this training resource.

So how do you find the correct personal trainer for you?

Here a few tips on finding the correct one. Given the nature of the industry its best having some knowledge. Hiring a personal trainer is knowing exactly what you are getting in return for your time, money and safety. Here are the items that need to be on your checklist in order to make an informed and practical decision.

It is all about you so be diligent in your choice.

Hiring a Personal trainer can help people reach their health and fitness goals. However also could be a big wastes of money.

Experience & Professionalism

Given the variety of choice with our Industry an experience trainer who has experience is certainly a worthy consideration.  Personal Trainers who have been around the industry over 5 years should expected to be busy. With enough clients to keep themselves employed. And continue to develop their skills. These are the ones who have a sound professional approach and managed to make a business out of personal training.

Skill Set  

Personal trainers need to have a solid understanding on the skill sets offered. If they promote strength training and Fitness conditioning. Or with kickboxing and boxing do they have a background in either of these disciplines? Or obtained from a weekend workshop.

At Claudefit you are dealing with an experience Strength trainer. A martial artist and registered Boxing coach. It is important to understand which skill you are paying for.  It is not only being thorough but for your own safety as these high impact sports. When used for fitness. Can injure the client with an overzealous trainer who with all good intentions pushed too hard.

Maturity

In short, it goes without saying that your trainer should exhibit some sort of maturity. The ability to verbalise teaching cues without resorting to inappropriate language under the impression of getting you motivated. Yelling down at adults is not my idea of training you. One of my dislike’s trainers make is questionable remarks on your current shape. Others severely judge your apparent lack of effort.

It is not our business to make such remarks. Ours role is to train you, educate and deliver results in a professional and supportive environment.  It is always good to know your trainer also has responsibilities. Maybe have kids, a mortgage and can understand life outside the gym. Apathy is not the domain of younger trainers who often mistakenly judge you are unmotivated and lazy.

Level of service

Having a strong background in client deliverables. It is a skill that has allowed me to be in this business a long time. Basically, do as you say and follow up all your promises. If your trainer says they will call you, and then expect a call. Having to deal with someone who is consistently late for sessions. Forgets important details. Should not not rewarded for lack of service.

I previously had my own trainer who while coaching me spend most of our time on Facebook. And confirming the next day’s bookings. I simply cancelled the session on the spot. I will never deal with them again irrespective of how good they are.

Premises

Safety and cleanliness of premise should be primary goal. Is the equipment up to the standard. Is it in a commercial environment? Because you are not paying to use someone’s home gym set. So, expect to be working on equipment that is designed for this purpose. Again, this is an issue of safety as you need to know the equipment can withstand the constant abuse it takes every day. A simple “cheapo” home gym simply will not cut it. Similarly, A dirty gym reflects badly on the trainer.

When hiring a personal trainer. Their approach & personality is important.

This is an important component in getting the Hiring the right personal trainer. Because you need to be aware how your potential trainer will approach the way they train you. Will they go all out and treat it as a boot camp, will they conducted as a slow and drawn out workshop (boring) or simply deliver the workout as you requested with a sound understanding of training protocols. Far too many times in my experience I have seen newbies somewhat destroyed by their trainer because they thought this is the way to achieve results.

My methods are simple. Claudefit gets you to move better. Establish a solid base of all over strength. And ensure that you fitness levels improve. Consequently, complimenting other elements. Once this base of conditioning is achieved it tends to work out that clients are the ones pushing themselves. Knowing how hard to work during our session and getting the results they are after.

You need to crawl before you walk.

Claudefit Personal training – Is an owner operator committed to delivering training results based on your requirements.

Isolations over. Back to working out.

Isolations over. Back to working out, so get your gym gear,water bottle and get moving again.

Thank god the day is finally here when we can all get back our gyms. Studio’s, bootcamps, and your Personal training sessions. Isolations is over, back to working out. Time to get moving now. It has been a while and some of us are chewing at the bit to get moving again. I bet you are.

Claudefit personal training is finally opening after what seemed a lifetime ago. It has been a test of resilience, patience and sometime been challenging. Add the bonus of helping with your kid’s home-schooling needs for some stressed out parents to that.

The frustration part was not been able to move as much myself while knowing several of my clients were stuck at home with limited options. Now texting me, they can hardly wait till I be opened again. I guess we all do not like to be told to stay home and for some, not work.

Time to get Moving

It is now mid-Winter and we all have the next following months to get active before the warmer weather is back and we are all out and about doing the little things we have been missing out.

I for one look forward to my clients to be back into the swing of it within the next couple of weeks.

If you have not joined up that gym or fitness facility yet and have been thinking about it, Isolation is over time to move. Likely they will be almost giving away the membership with plenty of incentives been thrown at you.

Make sure you do your homework on what suits you best and see if you can get some free passes to classes and trial session. I myself as a Personal trainer offer a 30min trial session. It allows us to speak face to face and see if we both are a suitable match for a client and trainer arrangement. Basically, try before you buy with no obligation and for me not push you into it like other facilities. I promise.

Group, Bootcamp & Compact gyms

Other options include the larger commercial gyms that have enough equipment to keep you busy. With some offering a wide selection of group fitness classes , semi private PT , ladies only area and fitness instructors who are on the floor to assist you with any club related matters.

There is also the smaller franchise set ups that are compact. Open 24hours and do not have the distractions and often loud of group fitness in the background.

For those who crave more atmosphere the new kids on the block that hold. Only group fitness classes like Boxing, Circuits and HIIT classes are also everywhere. Oh and then there is the Bootcamp groups.

There are plenty of option to suit all requirements.

Ensure that you are medically cleared to train. If injured ensure that you have a proper rehabilitation plan that will get you back safely.

Remember do your homework first and if you have a friend see if you can get a better price.

Welcome back to training days and keeping that stress away.

Claudefit personal training has been operation since 2006 and offers private session in a Professional, hygienic, and safe environment.

Winter time is base building time

Time to ramp up your workouts now that winter is here and you can start working on building up that fitness base

Winter is finally here so expect the darkness, chilling wind, footie and the rain to keep us company for the next few months. So I reckon now it’s probably great time to change your training around, keep motivated and achieve those results you’re after. That’s right! Rug up. It’s time to put in the long yards and get some serious base training in! Winter time is base building time.

In my opinion this is the best time to work out so don’t let a little coolness hold you back. Take advantage unlike others who drop off and get yourself moving. The alternative is to stay indoors, grab the chips, chocolate and catch up on all those streaming programs you have been missing out on. I know this is not you.

Here’s my cheeky yet honest opinion on what you can do to keep you focused and motivated over the winter months.

Build your strength base

For the experienced strength trainer it’s time to load up that squat rack and start placing more weight plates on your deadlift my friend. Yep for the weight lifting crowd it means cover up and starts working on those honest compound lifts. Winter is great for now getting into some pure and serious strength training in while following a simple yet challenging 5×5 or 5×3 program in building up your limiting strength. Or packing on some more muscle. No more of the 2 hour, high rep 6 exercise routine. Bring it back to the basics and lifts. Just make sure your lifting goals are clear and you are injury free. Now is the time to put in and go hard.

For the more recreational trainer it’s a great time to get in some consistent training in and work on getting in a full body program over the training week. Include some cardio and don’t neglect your stretches. After 6-8 month of solid training expect to be heavier and slightly more muscular. Enjoy the gains, hang in there and don’t be a fair weather trainer.

As for my female readers it shouldn’t be too different for you with this approach. It’s just a matter of keeping the food in control and eat enough to fuel your workout. It’s about being lean, fit and healthy. No skinny at any cost. You won’t put on size if you lift weight. Just strong and lean.

Winter time is base building

Cardio Fitness. Time to ramp up the cardio

The cooler months are much kinder to anything cardio related. I’d rather be properly attired with my running clothing now than run out in the summer’s heat. The body takes a greater toll when one is exerting themselves in the hotter months.

As you have already put in the work I would only recommend you put in the harder running when the focus is on a event during this time. It’s winter time now so its about building a solid fitness base. ANd getting ready for the more regular events. Anything during this time should be a bonus. Now during winter its great to be able to push the body without blowing up. So with a smart program you can recover quicker, develop greater capacity and constantly push the pace in while building up your cardio engine.

Running or cycling in winter is also easier when monitoring the body’s own temperature as you can layer up and remove clothing items as you move along. Get out and embrace the coolness. Do some research and invest in some proper winter clothing. You won’t look back!

Tip: Find a training buddy and hit the cardio machines or get out and about. You can both keep each other accountable.

Work on weaknesses

Hips lacking power? Need to build up the shoulders or need core strength? Yep you guessed it. It’s time to focus on those imbalances and areas of opportunity now. You have 4-6 month of cool weather to work on weaknesses. Before you know it you are a better version of the one that decided to focus in on those particular areas.

Time to give those stubborn body parts attention, target your lack of any cardio, finally get some flexibility in or simply improving on any lacking technique. It a great opportunity to work on those key parts of your goals and get them sorted out.  Imagine getting to spring feeling ready to go and knowing you have put in the work with an improvement on those previous areas of concern.

Work on food quality

What a perfect time to start working on your food. Don’t give me the” I’m not motivated and hand me my comfort food here” or “I’m too tired” rubbish. You simply cannot neglect such an important part of you strength, fitness and health goals. With every thing related to winter base building time dont forget its also about the food.

Get the basics right from the start and then maybe when you are eating well and you are getting in the quality nutrients. You could think about investing in some Protein powder, Creatine, or any other supplement you think you may need.

Because you cannot bust out a solid workout and expect results by feeding yourself junk. In this day and age there is an abundance of information out there that can help you out. And provide you with the basic understanding of how to go about eating healthy and clean.

Most of the time if you already have a sound established nutritious eating habit you don’t need it. Honestly your nutrition usually requires a little tweaking. So be honest and clean it up. Think quality first.

For the weight loss crowd

For those who simply want to lose the weight now is the time to put in the work and get educated about how to shift the kilos. No secrets here, it’s a matter of incorporating a nutrient quality approach and take it from there.

The fad diet, totally omitting a food group or I’m doing my own thing doesn’t work nor does the “its comfort food season” mindset and “you gotta live” excuses. This approach will only set you back further. If you don’t bother now don’t question why you are still overweight in spring.

As a result i see it all the time with people. It’s always about food and sedentary lifestyle choices. You have 4-6 month now before the fair weather arrives so you have a choice now. Do something about it or wait until spring to once again procrastinate whether you are going to diet again.

It’s about education and being consistent with your overall habits. Not the short term quick results approach. It’s not easy, but it ever so worth it.

A positive mindset

This is everything when it comes to reaching your goals. Most often with people they are highly motivated at the moment, however this changes when the reality of turning up mid-June in the dark and have to put in the work. Better to stay at home warm in front of the television, yeah?

A positive mindset will not only motivate you to work out but will go a long way in helping you to fix up other lacking areas (Your Health) and soon enough with a consistent few months, you’ll be eating better, getting stronger, be fitter and you will most likely start reaching your goals on the scale.

An ordinary attitude doesn’t not help you nor does it endear you to fellow class participants so please understand that your mindset is important.

To sum up. Stay positive, commit and take advantage of the cooler months.

Rug up enjoy!

Claudefit is a Mill Park Based Personal Trainer with 13+ years experience directly in the fitness industry in addition to his own.

Isolation workouts

Isolation workouts

As an active person and operating a personal training business I’m shut until further notice. Its now time for us to incorporate some Isolation workouts so time to move. During the unfortunate shutdown of the country we’ ve been told to stay at home, I figure most of us are in a similar place. As business owners the government has told me that we are in hibernation mode. Whatever they want to call I’m now unemployed and its time to get moving.

With now having only limited opportunities to exercise like were used too we can’t be too choosy with available options. Without access the usual activities we so much enjoy, no access to the gym or smashing your group fitness class with friends you now must settle with other forms of exercise.

Either outside or indoors under isolation lockdown. I know what I prefer. Time to get moving people.  

I’m fortunate that as a regular runner with access to an exercise bike and my own equipment exercising is not a problem. What if you don’t have equipment? With limitation to outdoor activities been diminished this still leaves you with some options.

Time to get moving with walk to Run

If you have ever wanted to try it, now would be a good time. The many benefits of what running brings to the table are good reasons why this form of activity is recommended as part of an effective isolation workout. This includes:

  • The strengthening of lower body muscles
  • Strengthening the lungs
  • Mental health,
  • Weight management.
  • A strong immune system
  • Keeps the blood pressure under check and
  • Now gets you out of the house.

Especially if you’ve been keeping an eye out on the kids while they home school.

Start with a walk / run plan. For example, go out and walk for 5minutes then run slowly for 1 minute and repeat it for up to 20-30minuter at first. It clears the mind, provides some necessary movement to the body and is a brilliant overall exercise. Another is to find an oval and do walk run 50/50 around the oval. The possibilities are many, remember start of slowly then build it up as it suits.

For those who currently do walk and have a few routes, Adding running to your isolation workout schedule now would be a good opportunity to begin running that last 500+ meters and build it from there.

Bodyweight has several isolation workouts variables

The internet is all over this one, you can just about get a program here for all levels of strength and commitment. What I’m suggesting is to first go and find out how to properly perform the basic movement that are achievable to you. Pick some of the classics like a bodyweight squat. It’s best Learn the movement properly and start of gently and try to avoid busting out more than you can handle on the first time. Next tackle the various ways you can execute a push up, find the one progression that suits you and apply. There are several aids that can be used to change it up once you have the basics down.

The next one I propose is a pulling movement, this one will be a little challenging for you to achieve as you don’t have access to a chin up bar or equipment. Best to look up what is called an Australian row also known as an Australian pull up. (I kid you not) You can pick up a stick at your nearest Bunning store to find something suitable. BTW, working the pulling and pushing movements will also tax those arms.

Then there’s core

Then there’s core, the most basic of isolation workouts to use at home. No suprise, It’s one of the most often worked areas in bodyweight. There are literally 100s of core variations out there, start with the plank and some crunch movement and build up from there.

Once you build up the fundamental to each movement there will be many variations to making the movement tougher. Get the classics right. When you achieve a basic understanding and built up your strength and confidence you can start adding on more challenging exercises.

I’ll name a few to get you going however with a bit of research you will find a lot more.

Alternating Lunges, mountain climbers, Pistol squat (hard), jump squats, glute bridges and burpees. These are more on the cardio side however they all work best when the movement is right. Hit them when you think you can handle the workload. Enjoy.

Stretches

To complement the bodyweight movements and build up your exercise knowledge it will be beneficial to learn the stretches that support the exercises. It adds value to your time and makes the session more efficient. You are exercising or stretching it out. In my opinion I would recommend you learn the full body facial stretches first them move onto the major areas like the Hip and Shoulder. Finally, you can learn the many possible isolation stretches about. Think full body, Major muscles, then isolate.

The benefit with taking this approach is that you will identify the troubled areas that can be professionally worked on once this lockdown has ended.

Nutritional awareness

A lot’s been written on Nutrition. You can find an endless amount of nutritional knowledge from all sorts of qualified professionals to the ever-increasing so-called influencers. On what you should be eating. I for the record will always listen to the professional, not the influencer. I’m sure it’s all delicious and the comfort food recipes are out of this world. I suggest now to be aware of what you are consuming. Dont let it get away from you. You reckon you will work it off do you?

One of the best ways to keep in check of the amount of food you consume is to start on a food diary. This will tell you exactly what you’re doing and diligently recording it will help you in making the proper food choices. With a general lack of movement now I’m taking my own advice and noting all my food and beverage consumption.

I understand that his is not for all, however this is a great way of ensuring that weight management issues doesn’t get away from you during isolation.

Kids Isolation workouts. Get them moving outside

If you are working from home and have the kids with you schooling online. Use this as a great opportunity to take the family out for some outdoor exercise. As playgrounds are not in use now its best you all go out and walk/run. So if possible have the kids ride their bikes.

It gets everyone out of the house together clears the mind and freshens everyone up. Therefore now is a good time to walk to the oval and practice running while the kids kick the ball.

I know it’s the bare minimum and not an “ultimate” home workout program. The Isolation workout suggestion is to get you started on establishing a habit (forced or not) that you can continue and build on post our stay home restrictions.

As you, I look forward to having my total freedom back and get back to normal.

Stay safe.

Our running year so far

Great start to our running year

Our running so far this year has allowed us to only be able to squeeze in two running events before we as a nation came to a complete stop due to the Covid 19 virus. Which unfortunately has held us all at bay from late 2019. It has been interesting.

The first event we managed to participate in is the well populated 28klm Two bays trail run held in early January. Starting from Dromana and ending at Cape Shank it’s a new running trail event for us this year. So we decided to tackle it as its been on our bucket list for a while. For the other experienced and more committed runners who participate in the grueling 56Klm. It’s an out and back run from Cape shank. The return-back route is an amazing conquest.

For those who attempted either one of the distances, you have another year to prepare and go again. Well done for giving it a go. Because we know how hard it is.

Running Base planning

For Adam, Kaan and I we fortunately had sufficient time to get in the necessary training and set ourselves a 12 week training program. In short the key points are to:

  • Build a greater fitness base
  • Add some elevation
  • Build the condition required to complete the distance
  • Prevent injury
  • Recover well

For us every running year to simply complete an event is not enough. To recover well is just as important so a solid well-planned preparation was the key.

This allows for continuation of running and maintain health. Its why we run yeah?

We all managed to complete it in reasonable times and now have a greater understanding for next years event and will be more aware of the nuances of the course and adjust training accordingly. No substitute for experience.

With 2 Bays done and dusted and the initial post celebratory drinks and food were consumed over it was time for me to prepare from the next event in the coming weeks. This time I would be a solo participant as both work and other commitments prevented my running buddies from running. Someone has to carry the can.

More hills to run

As a regular runner and participant of several events over time it was great to be starting our running year with an early 28klm trail run then followed 3 weeks later by the next event. You see the 3 weeks before an event is usually the time to log in that last long run. For me it was a treat to have built up my base from late 2019, run a new longer event and now prep for a shorter one soon. I basically treated the two bays run as my last long run for the next trail event at Kilcunda which is an enjoyable half marathon distance.

I will mention that certain parts of the two bays offer some spectacular scenery and amazing vistas and the single trail sections were fast flowing, however for me running Kilcunda along the beach coastal path and an opportunity to run on the beach itself was an amazing treat. It’s one of the events that I look forward too. Its fast and the elevation isn’t too harsh on the legs with its rolling short hills and flat packed running surface. It’s a personal favourite.

Then it all went to pieces. Well almost.

Buller trail run  

The next event we had all signed up was the very challenging and intimidating 22klm run at Mt Buller. This one is an Alpine run with an elevation profile of over 1000m. While the previous two events had challenging elevations for the distances the pure descending or climbing nature of this course doesn’t allow for much even ground to run on (just a little). You are being taxed most of the time. The quads will be burning on the decent or the hammies will be grinding out during the climb.

Given that Kilcunda had been run the first week of February and Buller was supposed to be on the 5th of April it was sufficient time to build the running conditioning from past events and start to focusing the workouts on more challenging terrain designed for optimum elevation.

It was time to climb more so welcome Masons falls in Kinglake.

I had as part of our running plan included some specific elevation on our Long Sunday run. For the month of March that consisted of 5 Sundays we managed to reach a touch over 7000m of elevation in total in preparation for Buller. As luck would have it by the time we had run the last week of the month it was already a given that the event was going to be cancelled and were not going to make it. With the lockdown and stage 3 of conditions imposed by the Vic government it left us all with no event, sadly we had to adjust our strategy on not let our motivation wane.

Hibernation running plan.

Once we found out that a semi lockdown was in place and were effectively on hibernation mode (Gov words) we simply readjusted our general plan and now run a base building style where we try to run at least 4 days per week with two strength session (time permitting). The Sunday is still the long run with now having to leave a little earlier than usual. About 5:30am now to have the luxury of running free of any other people around us. Therefore In keeping with social distancing there is only two of us with the 3rd member running solo on or around his property in the country. Sorry Adam.

With no event on the horizon that been 100% confirmed as a definite my strength and running plan is simple.

If all goes well, Monday is a recovery 7klm, Tuesday a steady 10klm, Wednesday a tempo 15, Thursday Strength day, Friday an early 10klm, Saturday strength and Sunday the long run. All runs are now on Road.

Meanwhile I’ve been fortunate enough to be able to strength train in my own home facility. Besides that , when running we are currently not breaking any laws by having two non-family members run together. Rest days and intensity here are as you feel. Until the next event is confirmed, we will then start working on a more specific and structured plan because that when the heavy running will be back. Fingers crossed on that.

The plan really is to get out and continue moving with the running and compliment it with a full body strength workout. So the idea is to keep you Strong, flexible, fresh and not break you. 

Future running events, maybe.

We plan on taking on the very well-known Surf coast century held in Anglesea. This fantastic weekend event in September consists of a 100k klm Ultra (yes 100klm) and a 50klm trail event both held on the Saturday. The 50 klm course is basically the second part of the 100. On Sunday the event allows those who wish to participate in shorter distances ranging from 8.7klm, 15.3klm and the 22.7 klm suited to most abilities who want to try out trail running. So i highly recommend this event as its well organised and the atmosphere is fantastic.

Only time will tell if this year’s event will go on and in a couple of weeks if the distancing restrictions will be lifted. With certain events returning and people’s work places operating as normal. However any event news will add to our running year so far.

To sum up , I hope that as an active person you have found a way around this slight change to our daily routine to incorporate some workouts, are eating well and getting enough rest. I have the little ones at home with me now for home learning. oh sorry “online learning” which now helping to keep me sane during Isolation.

Well see you on the trail.

Spring into your fitness regime

Spring into fitness

It’s now early spring, the sun is out and all you can smell is the fresh scent of cut grass. It’s also time to start thinking about your forgotten or long overdue fitness program. Winter is over and you now have no excuses about the cold, darkness and not having the right motivation. Rise and shine people!

Funny how spring is the time where we all magically are in better moods, are no longer “busy” and are ready to take action with our fitness, weight loss and general health.

So what are your Fitness options?

I’ve made it simple for you as I’ve summarised the available options in selecting the right one for you. After reading this you will be better informed as to what to expect in terms of cost, effort and time you will need in reaching you particular goals. It pays to be informed as it will determine what you will get for your cash outlay.

First point to cover is what exactly are your goals? Is it weight loss, an increase in fitness, getting stronger, performance based, some sort of event? There are so many reasons to get out there and be active. This is important as once you determine what they are you will be better placed on making an informed decision.

No point in hiring a fitness trainer when all you want to do is increase your body mass.

Too many times people aren’t sure what they are and take up some sort of fitness regime and quickly lose interest. Don’t be that person.

Semi private personal training

This type of training is generally made up of small groups between 2-4 people and depending on the trainer is an attempt of replicate the same environment as a one on one. (that is keep a close eye on you ) At Claudefit my Semi private personal training options are made up to a maximum of 3 people and its typically family members or couples that enjoy working out together. I feel that any more than this number we as trainers tend to lose the value in paying for a personal training session. This type of training suits the person who has a partner/friend who clearly shares the same interest in working out and are committed to their training. The cost varies from $35 to $45 for each person for the hour. The trainer in these sorts of groups still makes good money and you are not paying the full premium price, however the focus is still there with an experienced PT.

Personal training (1-on-1)

This is clearly for those who expect 100% attention from your trainer and expect within reason the quickest and best results. Otherwise, why bother in hiring a trainer? With an experienced PT you should be able to not only be worked to your capacity (no bucket required) but also looked after with proper technique, nutritional guidance and a program that is achievable by you in its proper application. One on one training is suitable when you can’t achieve the same results by yourself so it makes sense to put a bit of effort in choosing the right one as you will spending a lot of time with them in addition to paying one a premium fee for the benefit of being told simply what to do. A professional working relationship should be a given so shop around and find the best fit. I’ve accumulated over 10 years of this type of training so I guess I’ve got a bit of experience by now. You are looking at paying anything from $30 – $80+ per hour. It all comes down to experience and what type of service is being offered. expect a high level of service, skill-set and experience when paying this sort of money.

Group training

This type of training is as the name suggest, it’s all about the group environment.  A group set up can really vary depending on the type of training you are going to do.  The range of a typical small group run by a personal trainer is usually around 6 to 12 persons and to allows for proper group facilitation.  I’ve run these in the past and have found 8 is more likely my limit. Other trainers would probably take in more and you can find yourself working out with at least 20+ others so be prepared to blend in. Most suitable for people who are after a trainer and not looking at paying  for the previous mentioned options. These are great for work mates and family members to take up together. They are also priced at the more budget conscious and are around the $8 to $15 per session. Most operators even sell the sessions in blocks of ten with a discount and require you to do 2-3 sessions per week. There are many options for this type of set up offering the many entertaining ways in getting you up and mobile. Shop around.

These should more than cover any particular fitness, strength and weight management goals.

Where to find them?

It’s pretty straight forward. These options are available in most commercial gym and community centres around you. A simple google search in your suburb should be a good start. You will find that in larger gyms your options for one on one training are many as most gyms have team of trainers with different skill-sets available for consultation. Check out the type of training specialty they offer and take it from there. (PT’s )Trainers usually offer some sort of trial before you hire them. You will also find most centres have regular group training classes that keep their members happy with lots of variety and are also entertaining. Jump in and give them a go.

Also check out the smaller boutique and local gyms that offer the same service. For some the smaller and less intimidating environment suits them better and staff know all their member names.

Claudefit personal training is a private free weights training facility catered to delivering an all-round fitness, strength and health service. With over 26 years of industry and practical experience you will certainly be looked after the way you should.

Get Fitter through Boxing

Get fitter through Boxing

It’s been well documented that a solid boxing workout works the entire body from a strength and fitness point of view. It’s the energetic nature of applying this particular sport within the fitness environment that allows Claudefit to deliver great results with my client’s fitness and conditioning. It’s also a lot of fun once you have the cardio base to push yourself harder.

I’ll get right to the point and go over a simple yet effective template that I use with my personal training clients. The criteria are simple, get fit and have fun while you are challenged and level totally worked.  For general fitness it’s easier to adjust as you go along and wont interfere with fitness objective.

Get fit, burn the calories and have fun. Ok then, let’s get you Boxing!

The warm up

  • 3×2 min light bag work at around 70% exertion will allow most people with the ability to last out the timed rounds. No point in attacking the bag for 30 seconds flat chat and floating around wondering where the energy went. Remember the plan is to last out the session, not deteriorate within the warm up.
  • 3×2 min Skipping will add value to any cardiovascular workout. A solid set of 3 rounds will go a long way in working out your shoulders, ankles, warm your core and hit the heart rate a treat.
  • 3×2 min Shuttle runs and punch-out drills will introduce the running component. Yeah, you have to run. For those who neglect the running part you are greatly diminishing the returns on any true fitness workout. For the rest of you embrace the movement and reap the rewards. Remember, athletes run.

The core work

My favourite go to core and abdominal drills for the boxing clients is to work the following exercises together as part of your  non-boxing component and rest before you continue the theme and glove up again later and be expected to work harder.

  • Medicine ball – These drills can be simply the old school throw and catch where you are performing a sit up while having you partner/trainer throw the ball. Simple and sinister when performed at high volumes. Old school is still the best here.
  • Gymnastic ring drills- I use this one in particular for my female client as it not only his core in a dynamic way but had the benefits of effectively working the hips region. A clear favourite with my female clients as it hit the hips and core nicely.
  • Hang knee raise – A classic movement that work the same muscles as a traditional crunch, however this movement delivers more bang for your buck in that it works your grip strength, stretches out you shoulder region and with the lower body isometric hold adds up nicely in delivering a solid core workout. Give 15+ a go and hit them hard.

Time to push Intensity

3×3 80%+ Bag work drill – Moving onto the next phase where you will hit the heavy bag again. This time you will be sufficiently warmed up, have you timing, co-ordination and be ready to bang! The 3 rounds at now 80%+ exertion will certainly take its toll. It’s time to get down to business and let go with all the energy you have, work the bag well and move constantly. Once you complete the rounds and depending on you skill-set/fitness you will be totally charged up.

Focus pad rounds – Keep in mind that with proper focus pad work you are feed the information and it will be up to you and your work output to proactively strike the target while moving around. Time to put in champ! With an experienced pad holder you get to move around so be prepared to go harder. You won’t beat the pads though, its part of the drill. This is where you decide how much work you want to put in. Time to leave it all on the line.

Skipping/shadow work– Once the heaviest workload has been completed it’s now a matter of preparing to complete the session with an eye of lowering the heart rate and allowing your body and mind to start winding down. For the fitter ones feel free to work the skipping a little more vigorously, for the not so fit it just a matter of finishing the rounds.

Close the workout

Stretch & cool down this is the best part of the session (if you have done the work) time now to focus on slow and gentle movements and hit the areas that need the work. The body is pretty much all warmed up and any stretching should be done correctly. Not a good time to go the full reach and hurt yourself.

Rest and nutrition

You have worked hard and have managed to smash out another session. Well done. Now it’s time to property fuel yourself and take in plenty of water. This is where your nutritional program is important.  Why waste your time in eating junk after you have worked so hard.

Getting your rest post exercise is part of the workout. Here’s a tip. You will go a long way with your fitness and weight management goal if you are diligent with both your nutrition and getting in proper rest/sleep.

Claudefit is an experienced personal trainer located in Mill Park in the outer Northern Suburbs of Melbourne.

Over 40’s Spartan race preparations.

Obstacle course racing

It was on the eve of my next Spartan race that I was feeling typically anxious about the next day’s event. You see this time we were tackling the Spartan Beast race.( http://spartanrace.com.au/ ) A well designed challenge that entails a half marathon distance of 21klm of mostly trail running along with over 25+ obstacles spread out over the field that need to be negotiated  and completed.  Otherwise the price of failure is to knock of 30 burpee’s as your standard penalty. All this with no map supplied or markers indication distance covered. Spartan organisers are notorious in not providing specific race detail so be prepared. It’s part of the appeal.

Age (I’m 47) should not be a barrier, so I’m not going to be constantly reminding you of your age, I’s just a matter of continuing to do the basics over the long term and stay on track. Consistency is the key. Quite simply, I’ve prepared myself on a diet of Trail running supported by an all over simple strength training program and complimented along the way with regular mobility and stretch drills. And i do mean regular! It pays to get the body resilient enough to endure the Beast run.  For us older runners we need to take into account the additional recovery cost when planning for these types of events. We need more time resting, not smashing ourselves with the typical fitness industry thinking of go hard or go home. Take this approach and you will definately be staying home – broken.

It’s been a long process along the way with plenty of running and general physical conditioning in prepping for this unique event. Previously we have tackled the shorter sprint event of 7klm (yeah they call the 7klm option a sprint) and then progressed over to the super which is their 14lklm version. One thing is for sure, they are both challenging in their particular ways.

Sleep / Recovery

I’ve made this point first as this is a critical part of the plan for everyone so I cannot stress it enough when it come to the older folk. I manage to get the standard 8 hours and take a nap whenever possible (mostly weekend on the sofa while the kids are watching telly – yeah I’m also a great parent!) Sleep is one of the best forms of recovery and allows the body to repair itself from the toll it took over the day. So get some sleep, plenty of it.

Apologies to those with newborns, sleep is not an option is it?

General physical Preparation

As with most things in life preparation is the key to achieving results. You either plan to achieve or plan to fail. The previously mentioned running and supporting resistance training was kept rather basis in its approach but I was consistent in applying it to the training week.  The template is as follows.

Monday – Light Kettlebell work focusing on mostly mobility.

Tuesday -10klm road – light

Wednesday – 10-15 klm Road – medium

Thursday – Pulls, press, chins, squats & core

Friday – 10klm road – medium

Saturday – Rest day (mobility)

Sunday – 20klm road/trial mix – light/medium

Spartan specific training

Over the last 3 months I’ve averaged 200klm per month of running both road and trail and kept the resistance training moderate depending on how I pulled up post runs. Unfortunately at Claudefit Personal training I’m not able replicate the 12 Ft wall climbing challenge, crawling over mud under barb wire, and climbing the new tower obstacles that Spartan rolled out on the day. My approach was simply to get the body resilient enough to cop what-ever Spartan threw at us and come out of it unscathed. It’s was just a matter of getting the body resilient, develop solid grip strength, be able to move well and turn up fit enough. Glad to report our goal was achieved. The Spartan part of the program was getting some playtime with crawling, rope climbing and bodyweight training. Basically to complete a Spartan you need to RUN, carry your bodyweight over obstacle and be flexible enough to not pull any muscles (I’m talking to you old fella) when negotiation the various tasks. The rest of any specific training is the icing on the cake. For those of you who have the time to build you own obstacle course, go for it and enjoy.

Race day

Once you arrive at the venue there are a few items that you should have packed for the event. A quick mention here as it will ensure that post event you are well organised and not suffer due to a lack of proper and adequate nutrition, dry clothing and comfort. Your race day bag/kit should have:  A large towel, spare socks, jocks and shoes, warm clothing, water, muddy clothing bag, cash for food and merchandise (yeah you’ll want the beanie), hat and a proper post event meal as you will be ravenous post run. I’m been pedantic here so don’t mind me if you wish to walk around in muddy , wet and uncomfortable clothing after you have run the beast ( 21Klms) You will have enough to deal with once done – You might as well be comfortable.

Stretching/mobility

My go to movement here have been a staple for several month. I’ve pinched these straight out of Kelly Starrett’s book  Ready to Run. I’ve build up to 2 minutes each side with the following. Hip flexion, hip extension, and squat hold. in addition for my shoulder blades , I just hang of the chin up bar. Have also added leg swings as my only movement pre-running. This has all added up well for me as my body while still fatigued from my running no longer feels painfully stiff around the hip and legs. I simply apply the following stretches post run and on the days off I manage to increase the time under tension. It all adds up folks so make this a part of the program. It won’t feel like much when you are supple and mobile, however neglecting these will clearly show up on the day. “Don’t be that guy”

Nutrition

Just as important as rest. let go over nutrition.

Keep-it-simple! No fancy, expensive, special or secret eating going on here. Please keep the following in mind when preparing your meals for all you nutritional requirements. It’s just matter of balancing out the energy requirement when you exercise and not overdoing it when you are not active. In other words, only eat what you need and eat well. Post event run reward yourself with the pizza or burger if you wish. First things first. Ensure that most of your nutrition leading up to the event was wholesome, good quality and eliminated the junk.

Keep it simple plan:

Water, Protein with every meal, Monitor carbohydrates, Eliminate sugar, No alcohol, Vegetables, Some fruit and Consume good fats.

In summary you need to have a sound cardiovascular base, solid all over strength and be flexible enough to manoeuvre your body through the course. It’s just that it takes a well-planned program to achieve a good balance in getting the 3 elements to work together. As you are an older athlete I’m sure your experience will allow you to take a common sense approach and take it in well.

See you at the start line.

Claudefit is an active personal trainer who enjoys trail running and the fun of participating in obstacles races for fitness and general health. Don’t let age be a barrier and let the younger folk have all the fun. Venture out, take control and enjoy yourself all while being pain and injury free.

Running trails in Mill Park

Trail Running in Mill Park

We are currently on a mission where my two running buddies and I are looking at tackling another Spartan race in September while building up to towards a full road marathon in late October.

As a group we have previously tackled sever running event as they pop up and deal with them as part of our regular running program. This time around we are being more practical and have planned out strategies to cover three different runs while ensuring that the workouts all complement each other. We have already completed the Plenty valley 11.2klm trail run as part of our preparation and have set up a solid base of  trail running for the next more challenging and longer event – The Spartan beast that is a half marathon trail run along with many obstacles.

It’s been an interesting few months as we have built up the necessary kilometres of running required to successfully complete this particular trifecta all while maintaining our health and staying injury free. We are all have other responsibilities and getting injured is not an option so we do our best to prepare for the upcoming events with a sound program that balance out running and resistance training.

Our running

The first race for us was the Salomon run in plenty valley (Mill Park) which is an 11.2 klm’s trail run around the blue lake single trails that is one of the more scenic events this series has to offer. It’s made up of several single track sections, a big hill and several more technical sections that add up to an enjoyable and challenging run. We have been running this particular area for several months as we are local to this course and change the route every time we run the park for variety. We generally cover anything from 8 to 20 klms depending on the type of workout.

With trail running just chucking in hill or two makes a huge difference so there’s plenty to offer here. This shorter (Salomon series) of the 3 events offers us the opportunity to work on our hill climbing , speed work and overall endurance in using it as a stepping stone to the longer and harder 20klm Spartan race coming up in September. Let’s not forget the Marathon in October.

The following is a simple, yet effective plan in getting you prepared for trial running. Remember, the bottom line with most programs is to simply turn up, do the work and commit to the long term plan. Especially with running!

  • 2-3 times minimum running 8-15 klm’s both on road and trails. This would include a longer run over the weekend covering a mix of road/trail up to 20klm’s
  • 2 sessions working on resistance training
  • And for my clients 1 personal training session working of full body strength covering specific requirements based on their particular needs.

Our weight training sessions

The resistance program was approached with a view of ensuring that the overall training load would fulfil an all over strength base increase and make us more durable given the trail running effect on the body and in particular preparation for the half marathon distance Spartan race. It’s basically a General Physical Preparation plan that will deliver a bigger return on workout time. It’s important to ensure that both you fitness and conditioning is up to the task.

The following represents the major exercises/movement covered.

Trap bar Deadlift/barbell

Barbell military press

Barbell bench

Barbell squat

Pull ups/chins

For a more conditioning approach the following more that satisfied the criteria

Kettlebell swing

Kettlebell push press

Sandbag shouldering / Sandbag muscle snatch

Battling rope

Skipping

My own weekly program was basic. Here’s the plan for the last month. 

Sunday – Long run

Monday – Mobility / weights

Tuesday – Run

Wednesday – Run

Thursday – Weights

Friday – Run

Saturday – Mobility

A lack of preparation will show on the day.

Similar to most things in life without proper planning you are going nowhere. It’s clearly the way to approach any fitness goal as it will go a long way in getting you where you want to be. whether its weight loss, an increase in fitness levels , becoming stronger or simply cleaning up your act with your food , it will always come down to having an effective plan first and then sticking to it. I’ve seen it many times before during running events where  a few chosen ones turn up and think they will wing it on the day and “see how it goes” unfortunately this usually doesn’t go too well. It’s the same thing with nutrition, if you don’t manage your intake along with the quality of your nutrients then nothing will happen.

By having a plan you at least have a greater chance in achieving your goals. As life tends to sometimes getting the way it’s always good to know that you can always adjust you plan as circumstances dictate. It’s better to have one than not.

Claudefit Personal training is located in Mill Park with the premises conveniently located with access directly to the gorge and its many trails.

Happy training and see you at Spartan. AROO!

 

Olympic Weightlifting for physical fitness

Olympic Weightlifting for strength and conditioning                    

Over the last couple of months I’ve been getting back into Olympic weightlifting in a more focused way than previously where I was content with the 3 Power versions of the lifts, kept the sets to a few high volume reps while working on the other traditional strength barbell lifts.  At times it more resembled a crossfit approach than a more specific weightlifting one.

The power version of the clean, jerk and snatch worked a treat in delivering results on their own so there was never a reason to change, especially if you are a sports power athlete that requires you to be more explosive or build on your already established strength base. These 3 exercises is all you will need to reap the benefits of Olympic weightlifting for sport, even better yet if you are in a position to hire a properly qualified and experienced coach on hand to guide you through.

This is my case now as I’ve taken on my own Olympic weightlifting coach to guide me through the more technical sports of weightlifting versions. Weightlifting is one of those disciplines that benefit from an extra set of eyes to keep your movement pattern ensuring you make progress and reduce the possibility of an injury.

The following is a list of prerequisites that are required as you set up to the bar. The checklist is for the snatch. It’s important to cover as many of them as you are able to given the nature of the movements. Ideally you will have a training buddy that can provide you with the cues to set you up. Once set, it’s just a matter of continually working on replicating the movement pattern of the Snatch- Easier said than done

* Feet Hip width apart * Shoulders over and in front of the bar * Chest is Inflated and up * Arms straight and elbows out

* Upright position (back is tight)  * Hook grip * Hips Higher than Knees (80-100 degrees angle)

Now aged 47 my warm up and mental preparation is what gets me ready for Weightlifting. With my extended background in Kettlebells it’s an efficient way for me to prepare myself with the HKC movements and work the exercises until I’m sufficiently warmed up (depending on time of day and temperature this could be 10- 20 minutes)  The simple Kettlebell exercises I utilise are simple and effective. The TGU, Two hands Swing and the goblet squat. Once completed I simply grab the barbell and start on more specific movements relating to the lift. Overhead squat, Power snatches and full stretch movement using just the bar. By then my squat and overhead positioning feel comfortable and the core is ready to go.

Time to load it up.

The current exercise for the snatch that I’m working on have been identified as the ones I need to focus on where I am at the moment.  The points are what part of the movement they promote. It’s these that I’m currently working on in addition to dropping into a full snatch.                

Snatch grip high Pull                                                                     

* High transfer into power production * When comfortable (more experienced), done at maximum speed

* Start position of snatch (wide grip) * Pulling straps can be used

Full Snatch from Hang (Knee Height)                                                                    

* Enhances the ability to accelerate the bar in the second pull * Skill at receiving the bar

* Top of thigh /lower / explode up

Power Snatch                                                                   

* Emphasis on explosive phase * Accelerate as much as possible

* Avoid pushing head forward (promotes hips going back) * Lower than 90 degrees it’s not a power snatch

In addition the above I cover the necessary movement that basically add all over strength. The obvious ones are the squat variations, the pulling /deadlift movements and the overhead press. It’s important to have a balanced program that will allow you to work in all the element of strength, conditioning and power. For some the weekly turn around works well. For me at my age the two week turn around suits better as it allows me to cover all the moves. It incorporates rest periods/ aids in proper recover and just as importantly, doesn’t interfere with work and family.

Maintaining you water intake and ensuring your nutrition supports you goals will completer the package and ensure you are feeling up to the workout recover well and achieve you results.

Claudefit personal training Is located in the Northern suburbs of Mill Park.

 

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