How specific is your training?

There are many elements to fitness. At one end of the scale is the endurance and capability of an ultra endurance runner, the other end being a one off lift performed by a powerlifter. Most of us fit into neither category, but the important part is using our training time wisely.

It’s a common mistake to stray off course, one way or the other. Some programs, for example set gym programs, get us hitting very specific movements in a specific way. Although this may be enjoyable for some with good progress, we do need to assess whether it is too limiting.

The fix: Add other elements to these workouts. Don’t go out and lift the same every time or run the same route at the same pace. Develop all areas, work shorter durations to develop more power/ speed or for longer to develop more endurance. In lots of cases working on elements like balance, skill and flexibility can yield better gains.

Conversely, some training programs can be too vague, in fact they may not even be programs at all. They may just be general attempts at fitness! This is all good, and whatever keeps us motivated is a good thing.

The fix: Be more specific of course. If it’s for general fitness this is fine, so consider experimenting with different elements such as strength or balance. Try new things, even new sports or events, which can often give some more specific focus to training sessions.

Most importantly our mindset and motivation will drive all of our sessions and results. A focused training program will change this massively. Enjoy!

As always, come and see us for all the above and more

Top 5 tips for training through winter

Winter is coming.  No, really, it’s already be here!  Most of us struggle with motivation to train and stay in shape as it is, so once the clocks have gone back we often need a push.  Here are our top 5 tips for training through the winter.


  1.  Book an event

Hands down having a looming deadline is a great motivator.  There are a couple of options here.  Entering a spring time event is a sure fire way to get focused and will give you 3-4 months of solid preparation.  Alternatively book one or more events through the winter and commit your training to them for a constant motivation.  It’s never been a better time for events with access online, so get out there pick one and go enjoy the challenge.

2.  Work on your weaknesses

Many people use the winter to develop strength.  It makes sense, there’s less daylight, the gym is more inviting and the strength gains that show months from now will be worth it.  A solid 8-12 weeks of real strength will carry through a long way.

3.  Work now get paid in spring

The work we do this end of the winter will carry through and believe me, come spring your body with thank you for it.  There’s the motivation.  You’re not pounding the miles or the kilos for Christmas, but for when we come out the other side.

4.  Go shopping

Having the right gear for training outside is a game changer.  The technical layers available now will keep you warm and dry in even the worst conditions, so treat yourself, pick up the right gear and get out there.  Clothing made from things like merino wool and gore tex can make you virtually invincible but can also motivate you as your lovely new kit needs to be regularly tested.

5.  Have an indoor option

OK, so sometimes it will be properly grim.  Minus 3 on the thermostat and pouring rain isn’t for most of us, so have a back up plan.  We use Zwift indoor cycling which is a totally immersive indoor  bike experience, it’s amazing.  Trusty gym sessions are always guaranteed, indoor tennis courts can be booked, swimming pools can be used etc…  No excuses.


Hopefully there is some motivation here, if you need more some and see us at


2 workouts under 30 minutes

As opposed to trying tough it out 4 hours a week in the gym, a simple solution to training is to work regularly on shorter sessions.  This way we get the fitness benefits and the endorphin hit without expending too much time/energy/soul!

In our opinion shorter, sweeter and simpler is also more likely to be regular.

Here are a couple of routines we have offered that need no equipment. Session 1 is more muscular, session 2 more cardio. They can be alternated, used alone or even combined into one workout.  Simples.


Session 1

Warm up first, then compete this routine, stretch at the end!


Session 2

Fartlek training.  This will boost your cardio more and can be done walking, running, cycling or even in a pool.  Keep it almost casual in approach  – the randomness will add to the variety!


  • Warm up easy 5 minutes
  • Pick ‘random’ landmarks’ where you work hard to get to (90% effort).
  • Coast to recover and when you feel good pick another random distance and repeat.
  • Aim to do this 6-8 times.
  • Cruise home and stretch!


Good luck!




6 top tips for better workouts

With regular training there are so many variables and with this we are always looking to get the most from what we do.  Even if it’s  a daily commute to work or an occasional gym workout, these top tips will help you get the most from your workout.  Much of this comes down to specificity which essentially means we are all individual with different needs and goals.  This is a very important part of the process.

Eating before exercise

Getting the nutrition right before training is really an individual thing.  For performance we need to eat plenty of calories and consider the macro nutrients carbohydrates, protein and fat.  Remember we need some carbs for performance and fat is always the slowest to digest so leave plenty of time after higher fat meals.  For weight loss performance may take a back seat and it’s a case of eating just enough.  Either way it’s certainly worth trying lots of different options to see what works.


..and after exercise

The post exercise window of anything up to an hour is the perfect time to refuel.  Usually carbs and protein are priority here and again it’s individual to what we can manage and how much we need.  The recovery process starts here so a good post workout snack/meal can mean a big difference.


Get specific

Have a clear idea of what you want to achieve before the workout, then stick to it.  This is a major part of training and without it we are simply smashing empty miles or pushing empty reps.  Along these lines the more interesting training plans are those designed around events or sports.


Pre hab routines

Pre hab exercise are simply exercises that help to mobilize, rebalance and prepare the body for a workout.  Tight hips, sleepy abs or sticky shoulders need a wake up before we even start.  Time spent here reduces injury risk and means the body is much happier working later.


Find a training buddy (or Personal Trainer!)

You will simply enjoy the training more, work harder and generally look forward to workouts.  This goes a long way especially on the days where motivation is down.


Shake it up a little

Try a different method of training or even a totally different activity entirely.  It’s good to keep the body guessing and essentially it’s good for the body and mind to use some different movements.  Always fancied some squash or windsurfing?  Use that new found fitness and strength to go and have a lesson.


As always, come and see us to do things the right way.  We offer quality Personal Training from our exclusive studio at






Ways to be more efficient and get fitter

In modern life we are all busy in our lives, rushing from job to job and jumping from tech to tech.  This can be problematic for some when it comes to trying to exercise. We all know we should be active every day and be aiming for 2-4 good training sessions a week (depending on goals). Here are some ways we can find time to get fit…

Make daily routines a workout

This is my personal favourite.  I will do some stretches/foam rolling while watching the news in the morning, cycle the school drop off and commute to work (6 miles plus!), then maybe even add some core work before first session.  Powerful stuff.

Another favourite is walking or jogging to the local shops for that pint of milk.  It’s better for your body as well as the environment and the more we do these types of things the easier it becomes.


Kids and dogs

If you don’t have any of the above kidnap one or buy one!  The perfect excuse to run around the park, play games, throw and climb.  Some of the funnest sessions will be a long dog walk in the forest or a game of park footy.



The classic case is the number of hours we spend watching TV and surfing facebook versus doing exercise.  Sometimes fitness just needs to be prioritized, it’s your health we are talking about.

Efficient living is another subject in itself.  Often we make a task bigger then it is by spending more time on it than necessary, even putting it off for longer will make it harder.  The cost of checking email too often is huge, when we often only need to check a few times a day.


Little and often

Along these lines those mini sessions of 15-20 minutes per day are invaluable.  By scheduling a shorter session we are more likely to get going on it.  A good strength session or cardio session can be condensed into 30 minutes so if time is short this can be a great way to go.  Personally I always strength train for less than 20 minutes!


Here are some other nuggets to get your training wedged in..

  • Set the alarm 30 minutes earlier. Unless it’s an early start anyway this is a perfect hassle free start to the day.
  • As above, train on the way to work.  Join a fitness club  en route!
  • Buy a bike.  They can get you everywhere faster and are much more fun.


BourneFit Personal Training offer bespoke fitness solutions in Bournemouth.  Visit the website for more info…


How to make the most of winter training

It’s definitely that time of year, off to work in the rain and driving home in the dark!  Winter training takes on a different feel and is often a time of year for changing the approach slightly.  This can be a good thing as any work done now will be realised in spring.  Here’s how…

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Get in the gym

This is a perfect time of year for workouts in the dry, warm, cosy gym.  The gym is a good environment for controlled training such as strength training or specific cardio intervals.  Most importantly put together a workout that is specific  to your goals.  This way of course it will be time well spent as well as motivating, which is definitely the most important factor.

Work on your weaknesses

Whatever your goals or sport winter time can be a good time to work on weaknesses.  Again this may come back to strength training in the gym or it may another specific element of fitness that we tend to avoid.  An example here as a runner may be running hills or speed work.  These elements can easily be covered in shorter sharper sessions especially when the weather is naff.

Build your base

Another specific element is endurance or base training.  This is the bodies ability to tick over at a low level often around 60-65% effort.  This builds your base fitness and come spring offers a decent foundation for more speed work.

Stay healthy

Finally look after your body.  Avoid late night binges on stodge, multiple Christmas blowouts and central heating!  There are lots of viruses flying around this time of year so it’s important to simply stay healthy.  Eat plenty of antioxidants, reduce training if you’re feeling run down and get plenty of sleep.  This is a key part of getting through the winter.


Want to come for personal training and do things properly?  Come and see us! – visit the website


Creating 5 good daily habits

Here are 5 good daily habits that will massively improve your health and performance every day.

  1.  Brekky.  A decent breakfast is the key to good energy, fat burning and appetite regulation.  It also predicts how we go on to eat for the rest of the day.
  2. Have a stretch.  We all suffer with at least a couple of tight muscle groups. Do some form of stretching or foam rolling 5-10 minutes in the morning followed by throughout the day.
  3. Relax more.  Take time out to stare at the sea or climb a tree.
  4. Visualise.  Think about where you want to be and do it often.  This could be completing a 5k, improving a 10k or reaching a weight loss goal.
  5. Try something new.  A healthy lunch, some mountain biking or even just a different gym routine.  Even if they don’t stick different options can make your usual choices seem better.  There’s always something to be gained.

A spot of early morning exercise..

This time of year the sun rises closer to 5am and the mornings are beautiful in Bournemouth.  Naturally the body wakes up earlier (or should).  A spot of early morning hiking, cycling or jogging can be amazing for the body and soul from as little as 10 minutes all the way up to a full on workout lasting an hour or more.  Here are some quick tips that can help…bournemouth personal training

  • Prepare your body the night before by going to bed earlier and setting the alarm.
  • Prepare your kit as well.  It makes life easier and is less noisy for your loved ones.
  • Choose a good route in advance, the more scenic the better.
  • Start off with small amounts of time, enjoy the experience and you’ll be more likely to do it again.
  • Perhaps build it into your commute, school run or daily chores.
  • Enjoy.  It’s what we are born to do.

The best way to a better gym workout

Many of us find it easy and convenient to go the gym simply to hop onto some cardio machinery and ‘zone out’ for 30 minutes to an hour.  This is possibly the worst use of time.  Let’s have a look at the simple but effective way to boost those workouts, interval training.

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Interval training essentially pushes the body above it’s usual steady state intensity for short periods.  This can be anything from 100% all out effort for 10 seconds to 85% effort for 10 minutes.  Whatever method you use it’s important to understand the intention.

Intervals burn more fat

Most people on cardio machines want to burn fat.  Intervals effectively stimulate fat burning  and essentially produce a longer ‘afterburn’ effect.  It’s that simple.

Intervals boost fitness more

In order to produce any change in fitness we need to overload the body in some way.  Pushing the heart rate higher increases cardio function and efficiency.  In most cases due to the increased intensity, less overall time needs to be spent doing it.  Good news all round.

How to incorporate intervals

This depends on your weekly training, but for the majority of us a good rule is to do intervals no more than twice a week.  Intervals are not for the unfit or faint hearted.  If you are unsure, get advice from a medical professional before attempting high intensity work.   Also make sure you are well warmed up, at least 10 minutes should do it.   Here are a couple of simple ways of doing intervals within your workouts…


Equal work/recovery  —    Work at 90% for 60 seconds then at 50% for 60 seconds.

Pyramids   —   Work for the following with equal recovery.  1-2-3-4-3-2-1    Do a 1 minute effort then 1 minute recovery, 2 minutes/2 minutes recovery etc.

Go by distance  —   the rower is good for this but any cardio machine works.  Work hard for say 500m and take a note of your time.  Go off, do some weights etc then come back later and have another go trying to beat your last time.


Need more advice or want to incorporate these properly?  Come and see us

The 4 best ways to improve your training

Starting a training plan and sticking to it can be a fickle thing as it’s often a fine blend of planning, work, eat, rest and repeat.  Here are are the 4 best ways to improve your training whatever your goals are..

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Stop being so hard on yourself

So, you have constructed the perfect training program, destined to take you to the ultimate level.  If it’s not working then there’s probably a reason why.  It’s too strict.  It’s perfectly ok to aim high but often taking a step back and pitching it right is the way to go.  This way you will enjoy it more and succeed.


What are you doing?!

This is close to the opposite.  Low structure is equally destructive so set out your goals early on and train around them.  Really drill down to what you are looking for from your training, how much time you want to dedicate and work out what you will truly enjoy doing.


Eat and sleep right

Sleep is the most important thing on the agenda followed by good diet.  The best training plan in the world needs good sleep and food to back it up.  Both of these done well will improve recovery time allowing you to train sooner and harder.


Listen to the body

Knowing when to deviate from the schedule, knowing when to push hard or even back off altogether is a skill.  We often have lots of other stresses and strains physically and mentally so it pays to listen to the body.  The first 20 minutes of the day can be a pretty good indicator to our bodily state.  If you’re struggling to finish a workout back off a little and likewise if you feel invincible then go for it!


BourneFit Personal Training offer bespoke fitness solutions for all levels and abilities, from once a week to professional athletes.  For a FREE consultation get in touch with us.