The Beast – How We Dragged Ourselves Around 12.5 Miles of the Purbeck Coastline!

So as some of you might know we decided to take part in this years Purbeck Beast…..and it did exactly what the name implies. We had heard lots of stories about the hills, steps and treacherous terrain, but we thought to ourselves “How bad can it be?”…………

So a couple of Sundays ago on the 1st of September we made our way to Corfe and parked up in a field. It was pretty nice weather for running, still cool and no sight of wind or rain, but the ominous feeling set it when we saw who we would be racing against. Everyone else was is team colours for their running clubs, and then there was us….stood in Barefoot shoes and old cotton t-shirts…..we definitely didn’t look the part. This was made even more obvious as runners studied the map intently, making comparisons from the year before and the slight changes to the course. We on the other hand looked at the map, looked at each other, looked back at the map, shrugged and headed to the start line……true professionals!

runWe took the 5 minute walk to the start line, and it was packed, 425 runners bouncing on the stop, talking strategy and comparing anti-chaffing creams. Quick briefing from the marshals then BANG, the race began, months of training now had to pay off! The first priority was to get away from the congested pack at the start, so we shot hell for leather down the outside avoiding the ditches. After a very short and quick section of downhill on road, we then turned off and began the first uphill. This helped spread the pack out, and took us back around to the first bunch of spectators……this would be that last time they saw us looking fresh and happy.

The course then undulated for the next few miles, then we hit the first long uphill. A rocky broken path that continued up for about 15 minutes, it then flatten off and on to grass, then back to another 10 minutes of climbing……Brilliant! We then had a pretty technical and very rocky long section of downhill, this was the one downside of the barefoot shoes. Our feet took a battering for the next couple of miles until it leveled. The general pattern of climbing followed by descent continued until we hit the coast. There were some short steep climbs on the coast followed by some long windy flats, this was a relief on the legs, and the views were incredible.Footpath_ascending_Houns-tout_-_geograph.org.uk_-_1633014 (1) After hammering along the coastal paths for a few miles we reached Chapman’s Pool, a few hundred steps down, followed by a few hundred steps up…..This was brutal! Negotiating the steps down was treacherous enough and pretty draining, the way up was hideous. All ready very tired legs walking up a few hundred very steep steps, and to make life worse, at the top of the steps there was still a couple of steep climbs…..We will never moan about a flight of stairs ever again!

We then started heading away from the coast, the paths seemed to flatten out a bit more and the climbs became less sharp. We began a gentle climb into Kingston, sadly this gentle climb seemed to last for about 30 minutes, and really finished off the legs. We then made it into Kingston, and awaiting us with some encouragement was Bex, Michelle and Charlie. We pulled our shorts up to look like “proper runners” and shot past until we were out of sight…then we got back to breathing out of our arses again! We then had our last drinks station, necked a gel and saw Corfe Castle on the horizon, a huge relief! The last couple of miles stayed fairly flat, couple of steepish climbs and loads of stiles to climb over. We started recognizing things from the start of the race so knew it wasn’t too far. We turned a blind corner, around an old wall and there it was…the finish line!

run2

We crossed the finish line in an official time 1:50:41, putting us 108th out of 425 runners. We had beaten our target of going in under 2 hours and surviving! The Garmin at the end read 12.47 miles with 2017 feet of climbing in total. We then made out way to the nearest pub for some well deserved lunch…..the journey was slightly interrupted by a spot of cramp in the car which required some road side massage, but we don’t really wanna talk about that! The rest of the day was a blur, and naps were both had on the sofa in front of the tele. The legs remained trashed for the next couple of days, but as they recovered we slowly began to forget about the pain of all those hills and started talking about what we would do differently next year…………………….

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So that’s next year sorted then!

Kind Regards,

Luke and Si

The 30 Day Challenge, 30 Days On – How Fat is Keeping me Lean!

photo 1So after the 30 day challenge I wondered what would be the best way of maintaining my body fat and increasing performance. I wrestled with a couple of ideas and they all seemed to come back to one thing…..Ketogenics! So what is a Ketogenic diet I hear you ask. Well it’s pretty simply a high fat, low carbohydrate diet…..though this doesn’t mean stuffing your face with pasties and deep fried food. This is about getting your carbs through fruits and vegetables, and getting your fats through good sources like olives, oils, animal fats, nuts, seeds.

So how does eating more fat help me maintain and lose weight.

When the liver is low on stored glucose it begins to use fat as a source of energy, this creates things called Ketones, these can then be used for energy around the body. Though to the achieve this the daily intake of carbs can only be around 50 grams per day. Now a massive drop in carbs naturally will reduce the amount of calories that goes into the body for fuel, but that’s where the fat comes in. By increasing the amount of good dietary fats being ingested, the body will be more comfortable. So weight and performance can be maintained without having to constantly count the calories. Also increasing dietary fat and reducing carbs will promote the body to use fat as a predominant source of energy and burn more stored body fat.

The upsides of Ketogenic Diet.

Many people think of being in ketosis as a bad thing, but all it means is that the body is using fat as an energy source. One of the biggest upsides is the reduction of body fat, as fat is being used instead of stored. Research has also shown that Ketones are the organs preferred source of fuel, and have been known to show increased functions. Ketones are shown to improve alertness, concentration, sleep patterns and hormone levels. Also as calories aren’t being massively resrtricted stress hormones remain lower, this means the body will function better day to day and recover better after training. Stress hormones have the affect of making the body catabolic, this means muscle will be used for energy, this is dramatically reduced on a ketogenic diet. With fat being used as a source of fuel this means training volume can have a increase, as you are less restricted by the amount of stored glucose in the  body, meaning training can be more intense and longer. The last massive upside is that dietary fat adds to the flavor of foods, making meals more enjoyable as we all naturally crave fats. This also means you feel fuller for longer as the body will have a constant supply of energy.

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The Downsides.

The main downsides are minor effects on lifestyle. When the body becomes ketogenic it doesn’t take much in the way of carbs to take you out if it. Thats why carbs have to be kept to around 50 grams, if you go to far out of ketosis by having to many carbs, the body will begin to store the dietary fats. It also takes some getting used to. I would advice doing the 30 days of slow carb eating first, it will reduce the cravings for complex carbs and make the transition easier.

So how did I go about it?

I wasnt too hard having done the 30 days of slow carb eating. All I had to do to adapt was remove the peas and beans from my diet and replace them with, olives, butter, oils, cream, animal fats, cheese, whole eggs, nuts, seeds, chorizo, ect……pretty easy actually. So my average day would be…….Bacon, eggs, and tomato for breakfast……..spinach, cheese and chorizo stuffed chicken for lunch…..nuts and berries to snack……and lamb bolognese with broccoli, asparagus and parmazan for dinner……it all sounds pretty good hey? Once a week I would then chose to either have a one whole cheat day from midday to midnight, or 2 cheat evenings. This just made socializing on weekends easier and didn’t seem to knock me out of ketosis too much. It also allowed the body to completely replenish stores of glycogen throughout the body that would have been slightly diminished through training. The real secret is to make sure you don’t get your 50 grams of carbs though simple carbohydrates. By getting them though vegetables the body will stay in ketosis and not store fat. Having something starchy or sugary will rise insulin and cause the body to stop burning fat.

So how did I get on.

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30 Day Challenge results:

Weight = 73.6 kg

Chest = 106.5 cm

Waist = 81.5 cm

Body Fat = 10.1%

Now

Weight = 77.9 kg

Chest = 107.5 cm

Waist = 82.5 cm

Body Fat = 10%

So from what you can see is that making a massive increase in my dietary fat I have gained 4.3kg, and still maintained my body fat. This means I have had an increase in lean muscle mass and reserves of stored glycogen. We were a little confused by the 1 cm increase in waist size, but we later work out on the calipers that my obliques and abdominal muscle seemed thicker. This even suprised me, It’s very difficult to increase lean mass and maintain body fat all at the same time. The biggest factor of all was the way I feel……I feel amazing! I’m sleeping better and for sorter amounts of time, my recovery and training has gone through the roof, and I am in better moods and have so much more in the way of concentration and alertness. I thought I felt good after the 30 days, but this has taken it to a whole new level.

The secret is again is not to look at this as a “fad diet”, this is just a lifestyle adaptation. Removing the junk food, getting rid of the stuff that that we didn’t evolve to eat and getting back to eating to what suits our bodies. Over the last 60 or so days I haven’t calorie counted, of worried how big my portions are, and on my cheat days I haven’t felt guilty, and this is because what I have been eating has suited the biology and our bodies. So for those reasons I’m going to keep this going the foreseable future and hopefully all will carry on in the same direction, but will keep you all posted. If you want some advice or fancy having a crack at what I’ve tried book in for a session with us at BourneFit Personal Training or check us out on Facebook and Twitter

Many thanks,

Luke

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The 30 Day Body Challenge – Week 3

photo 1Another week down and still all going in the right direction. Found this week surprisingly harder than last week, but been very busy. The problem with being busy, is that you get tired and when you’re tired you’re more likely to fall off the wagon (I’l get to that in the next paragraph). Also with the sun being out that means more temptations than normal! People offering you glasses of wine and beer, and being invited around for BBQ’s, but there are ways around this. BBQ’s are actually brilliant for this type of diet……Protein, salad and vegetables. Just avoid the bad stuff that goes with them, burgers and hotdogs without the buns, replace the salad dressing with olive oil, and just stick to the stuff your know is fine, and if yo’re not sure just avoid it. As for the alcohol and cold summery drinks, this is just down to willpower, just have some ice cold water with lemon and lime…..don’t feel guilty for saying no to a glass of wine, explain you’re revamping your diet for 30 days!  If that fails just time your cheat days to fit! The main issue with this week has been the combination of tiredness and temptation. Early nights and late finishes at work mean the urges for quick food are emphasized, but the simplest way round is just planning ahead! Found myself pre-planning  when and what I was going to eat and certain days and it just makes like easier. Training has finally returned to normal, so my body has now completely adapted to training with only complex carbohydrates entering my system. This should really help with the last week of fat loss.

Why tiredness will throw you off the wagon

onscalesThis all comes down to energy levels, when we are low on energy our appetites increase and we want to eat. Sleep has a massive affect on our energy levels, so not getting enough will affect our appetite. The average person sleeps for around 7-8 hours per night, and for most of us this is deemed to be enough. During sleep the body goes into a heightened anabolic state, this means the body will increase growth and repair of the it’s systems. Sleep also is the time the body regulates its hormone levels. All these things allow the body to return to its level of natural stasis and make it more efficient throughout the next day (this includes fat burning). Sleep is also known to regulate the hormones leptin and ghrelin. These two hormones are responsible for appetite and feeling full, if they are unbalanced, appetite will increase, but you wont feel full for long. This will mean you will be either eating to much, or miserable even if you’re eating well. Sleep deprivation also affects decision making when it comes to food, and can start a bad cycle when it comes to eating and sleeping. The brain can only use glucose as energy, so throughout the day energy stores are broken down to fuel the brain. When energy levels are low through lack of sleep, the brain will increase appetite for things high in sugar and stimulants. Both of this have been proven to affect sleep and so the cycle begins. You’l be amazed what a few nights of good sleep will do for mood, energy and weight loss.

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This weeks results.

So here it is:

Weight – 75.5 kg

Chest – 106.5 cm

Waist – 82.5 cm

Body Fat – 10.5%

So compared to the starting week:

Weight – 2.7 kg Drop

Chest – 1.5 cm Drop

Waist – 3.5 cm Drop

Body Fat – 2.4% Drop

So there’s another week down and all still heading in the right direction. Only one more week left so my last update will be after the final day next Wednesday! For any advice or to book in for a session and check out BourneFit Personal Training

More to come next week guys, or search BourneFit Personal Training on Facebook and Twitter for updates!

Luke

The 30 Day Body Challenge!

So Here I Go!

photo 130 days of eating and living like a saint! (Apart from the cheat days, but we’ll get to that later). What inspired me to do this? Well I’m like most people, I’m brilliant at nailing one aspect of health and fitness at a time. I will be totally on it with training, but will let my nutrition slip with my “oh I’v earned this after today’s training” attitude. Or will have a more relaxed time with exercise, but be eating like a stone aged health guru! So what changed?

After giving clients tips to help with their nutritional plans, I thought “what if I applied everything i’ve ever told my clients, and stuck to it for 30 days?” What’s the potential? What are the limitations? Can it actually be done?…….Well there’s only one way to find out!

 

What’s the plan then?
The goal is to reduce body fat, maintain lean muscle mass, improve fitness, improve recovery from training, and generally feel better. The key thing is to keep it as simple as possible…….A list of rules about nutrition,  some tips to speed the process along, and an exercise plan….easy right? (Famous last words?)

personal training bournemouthSlow Carb eating!

Now you’re all welcome to try this with me, I’ve added a link of what foods are good to start with below. We all know roughly what we should be eating and doing to stay fit and healthy, but I suppose it comes down to one thing “how bad do we want it?”


The rules:

  • Only Slow Carbs – Beans, Legumes, Veggies.
  • No Starchy Foods – Potatoes, Rice, Porridge, Pasta, Bread.
  • No Sugar.
  • No Dairy.
  • Protein in every meal.
  • Don’t drink your calories.
  • Lots of water.
  • Avoid Sauces – Season food with herbs and spices.
  • Breakfast within 30 minutes of waking.
  • No artificial sugar – Diet drinks or sweeteners.
  • Only have fruit after and around training.
  • No Caffeine.
  • Have one cheat day every week.

The tips!

These are a few things that can just help everything along. If you’re already happy with the way you eat, try just using these on their own.

  • Chew everything 20 times before swallowing.
  • 60 seconds of Squats, Push-ups and Bent-over Flys 90 minutes after eating.
  • Ice cold water first thing in the morning.
  • A few nuts 15 minutes before eating main meals.
  • Place an ice pack for 30 minutes on the back of the neck in the evening.
  • Make the last minutes of your shower cold (Sounds horrible I know).
  • Stick something citric in your water.

 

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Training

2-3 x 30 minute sessions a week of resistance based training . Either classic weight training or circuit training.

2-3 Aerobic training sessions a week. Around 30-60 minutes either running or biking, and preferable interval based

15 minutes of stretching and posture exercises everyday

Make sure one of your training days falls on your cheat day.

 

I know this might seem like a lot to take in, but when planned out over a week it should be totally maintainable. There is a lot of science related to all of the above, but I’ll explaining all that over the next few weeks (don’t want to bore you all in one go). So this is what the day will plan out like:

8:00:      Wake
8:02:      5 Almonds with Ice cold water with lemon
8:10:      Shower (last minute cold!)
8:15:      Breakfast
10:00:    90 second workout
12:45:    5 Brazil nuts
13:00:    Lunch
15:00:    90 second workout
17:30:    Training (including posture and stretching)
18:15:    Fruit and nuts
18:30:    Dinner
20:30:    90 second workout
20:35:    30 minutes ice pack on the back of the neck
21:30+   Bed

Now depending on your work commitments and training plans your day may look a bit different. So don’t be afraid to tinker with it, and making it work around your day

Personal Training in Bournemouth

So where to start?

If we don’t have a start point, how will we know how we’ve done after 30 days? There are plenty of things to track progress. Weight, measurements, body fat %, clothing size, visual aesthetics, performance, mood, and generally feel. I’ve chosen weight, circumferences, body fat %, a photo (will post that with an “after” photo at the end. Topless photos on the Internet….what would my mother say?!?) and luckily I have a training log so can see how my training is progressing.
So……
Height: 178.5cm
Weight: 78.2kg
Waist: 86cm
Chest: 108cm
Body fat %: 12.9%

I officially started today, so based on the fact I’m writing this I’ve survived the first day so that’s something! Will be keeping you all updated with a diary and will be explaining some of the science and reason behind the plan.

Feel free to join in and keep us updated with how you’re getting on!

GOOD LUCK!!!!

Check out the rest of out articles for more advice on weight loss, fitness and health!

http://www.bourne-fit.co.uk/

http://www.bourne-fit.co.uk/news/what-to-eat-on-the-30-day-body-challenge/

http://www.bourne-fit.co.uk/news/

 

Sport Massage

Sports massage isn’t just reserved for elite athletes. It’s now widely used by people participating in all levels of sport, and even those with just aches and pains. So how can it help you…….

Sports massage is designed to relieve muscular tension and restore balance to the musculo-skeletal system. Tension and muscular imbalances can be caused by sports, but can also be caused by daily activity, like sitting at a desk or driving. Improving these issues with massage is achieved with techniques designed to manipulate the muscle and it’s components.  The physiological and psychological benefits of sports massage can be immense. Teamed with good training and nutrition, it can lead to significant improvements in health, performance and well being.

The Benefits

  • Increased flexibility
  • Improved performance
  • Reduced muscular tension
  • Reduced risk of injury
  • Improved circulation
  • Increased recovery time
  • Realignment of scar tissue
  • Enhanced muscular awareness
  • Increased the permeability of the muscle tissue
  • Improved posture

 

In and around sport

Massage can be used before, after and even during sports. Used effectively it can improve performance and allow quicker recovery after!

Pre-workout

This is normal done in and around the warm up. It is used to help increase circulation to the muscle and make them more supple. It is also helpful on the more problematic areas affecting performance, i.e tight muscles and areas of previous injury. It can also help psychologically, giving the muscle increased sensitivity and help mentally prepare for the activity.

Post-workout

Sports massage directly after exercise is used to improve recovery. It helps remove waste chemicals from the muscle, and realign muscle fibers. The quicker the body can return itself to a recovered state, the sooner you can get back to training! The sooner you can get back to training, the fitter you will become!

Between training session

Sports massage between training session is used to work on problems areas. Participating in any sport will cause certain muscle to have increase tension. These muscles vary depending on the sport, your posture and your flexibility. These sessions tend to be a lot deeper, but yield some of the best results. They can be help with current injuries, or help identify and treat areas susceptible to injury. This treatment will aid performance and help reduce your chance of injuries in the future……meaning you can train better and more consistently throughout the year.

Sports massage massage isn’t just for when aches and pains spring up. Used properly it can be done all year round to maintain health and well being in and out of sport.  For more information or to book a session check out www.bourne-fit.co.uk

How to get your Beach Body Abs!

Summer’s back in town and everyone wants the same thing………….that flat toned stomach so we can wear our swimwear with pride. Keep reading and you find out how it all works, and what to do to get your own washboard stomach!

 The abs are broken up into 4 main groups. They all have slightly different functions, but making sure you train each one will give you much better looking results!

Rectus abdominus – These make up the “Six Pack” running down the middle.  Their job is to bring the ribs closer to the hips, so simple sit ups and crunches work this area best!

Transverse abdominus – This is the deepest ab muscle, its job is to suck in the belly button! The best way to work this is with “vacuum exercises”, simply pulling the belly button inwards! These can be be done on their own or during other ab exercises. Working the Transverse abdominus will help flatten the stomach and help your posture!

Internal & External obliques – These muscle are located diagonally around the sides of the abs, and work to twist and bend the body side to side. These can be worked with side bends and by adding a twist to your crunches

Quality, Not Quantity!

Many people seem to feel more is better when it comes to abs. “I did 200 situps this morning” is something we hear alot, but it doesn’t mean it’s the best thing for you! When it comes to really working the stomach, slow your movements down and really think about “squeezing the abs”. This will stimulate more abdominal muscle and stop the larger hip flexors taking over! 3-5 sets of 20 reps when done properly will be more than enough to get your abs going!

The three S’s…..Suck, Squeeze and Stability!

Doing standard crunches is just going to work the rectus abdominus! Sucking in the belly button and squeezing the abs will stimulate the transverse abdominus. This will not just tone the stomach, but flatten the belly! Introducing a Bosu or a Swiss ball into your ab workouts will  help you build your core stability. This not only helps posture and your other exercises, but it also means you will hit more areas of the abdominal muscles! Exercise like the Plank are also brilliant to hit all the deep ab muscles, and a great way of improving posture that will help your beach body look!

Balance.

Posture is so important to a good physique! Working the lower back and hip muscles as well as the abs is vital. This will help maintain a healthy posture and emphasize your abs! Nobody’s belly looks good if they’re hunched over!

Showing off what you’ve got!

The best was to to emphasize your abdominal  muscles is by maintaining a low body fat. This is done with a healthy diet and regular exercise! Don’t just focus on your abs, make sure you’re getting all round, good quality exercise! Make sure you vary your abs exercises! Don’t keep doing the same old things. Change things up to make sure your hitting every part of the abs!

Try this on for size!

Here’s a basic circuit to give you an idea of how to train all the parts of your abs quickly and efficiently!

1) Bicycle crunches – 12 reps – These are like standard crunches with a twist! Perform a normal crunch, by bringing your left elbow to your right knee, then vice versa! Again really focus on squeezing the abs!

2) Side Plank – 20 seconds, both sides – This is performed by facing sideways and placing your elbow on the ground. Your feet are planted sideways on the floor, then raise your hips up. Try and make the body as much of a straight line as possible, then after 20 seconds repeat facing the other way.

3) Leg raises – 12 reps – These can be performed differently depending on your level. Leg raises involve bringing the legs and hips closer to the ribs. These are great at working the bottom on the abs! For beginners start by performing these on the floor. Lay flat on your back and raise the legs upward and towards the torso. For those feeling more advanced they can be performed hanging from a chin bar, leg raise station, or simply off the end of a bed.

4) Plank – 30 seconds – The exercise our clients hate the most, but we don’t know why, we love it!  Facing down, elbows on the floor, raise the hips off the ground and hold a nice flat body position. Its really important to relax the back and shoulders, and really suck the belly button in.

5) Swiss ball crunches – 12 reps – Sit on a swiss ball with your hands over your head. Slowly begin to lie back until your body is flat with your thighs. Then slowly begin to raise back up without hunching the back. Really focus on squeezing the abs and try to keep the ball as still as possible.

Repeat as many times as you needed.

For more advice book in for a free trail session at www.bourne-fit.co.uk

Circuit Training at Home

We are always advising our clients about exercising at home between personal training session. Even performing some low intensity body weight exercises in the morning will be enough to jump start the metabolism for the day and allow you to burn more fat. A great way of upping the intensity of these workouts at home and stop them becoming too repetitive is to create your own circuit training routine.

What is circuit training?

Circuit training is a form of body conditioning that combines resistance training with high intensity aerobics. It is designed to increase strength, muscle tone, improve muscular and cardiovascular endurance and burn fat. The exercises are performed at a high intensity with very short rest periods between stations. These factors then increase stress on the body, and yield better all round results than just performing exercises in a conventional fashion.

How to build your circuit?


A circuit can have anything from 4 to 12 stations, and can have a variety of different exercises. You choose the exercise based on what your goals are. F
or fat loss and all round toning, circuits made up of full body movements will be best. For those trying to work on specific areas you can build your circuit for just the upper body, legs or core. The best way to build your circuit is to write down the exercises you want to include, and order them in a way that gives each muscle group a rest between stations. So if you are doing squats on one station, it’s best the next station doesn’t directly work the same muscle. Once you have your stations laid out, chose how many times you want to repeat the circuit, then it’s time get started!!!

How to perform your circuit?

Your main consideration is do you want to perform your circuit based on repetitions or time? This means do you want to set a time limit on each station or have a set amount of reps to perform? Personally we would chose to do time. Having a time limit on each station means you will be able to push as hard as you can for every exercise, and not cheat yourself if the reps are set too low. A good starting time would be 30 seconds on each station, this can then be changed as you improve. Start your watch and begin the first station, perform the exercise with good form for the entire 30 seconds. When the time is up, move as quick as you can to the next exercise. Its important to take little to no rest between each station to maintain the intensity. Perform each exercise until you reach the end, then take your rest. Your rest depends on how long the circuit took. A good rule of thumb is about a third of the time it took to do the entire circuit. Once your rest is over repeat the circuit again. You can repeat the circuit anywhere up to 5 times, starting with 3 laps is normally a good starting point.

How to change your circuit over time?

After performing your circuit for a couple of weeks, you will begin to adapt. Its good to make a note of roughly how many reps you perform in the time limt, this will show you how well your progressing. Below is a list of things to change to maintain the intensity of your circuit.

  • Add stations
  • Increase station time
  • Decrease rest time
  • Perform reps quicker (maintaining good form)
  • Add weight to certain exercises
  • Increase the amount of laps
Things to consider
Make sure your perform each station with good safe form, when under a time limit its easy to start cheating, so don’t break into bad habits. Its also important to maintain the intensity, so if you ever feel the circuit is becoming easy, make some changes and keep the body guessing! You don’t have to be limited to the house, you can take your circuit to the gym, the beach or the park. This will help you throw in some new stations, like some hill runs, or jogging on the sand or taking on some stairs. The main thing is to enjoy it and set yourself some goals, this will give you more of a boost to keep going when it gets tough. Below we have provided an example beginners circuit, take a look and give it a go!
30 seconds per station – 1 minute rest – 3 laps
 
1. Squats
2. Push ups
3. Walking lunges
4. Dips on a chair
5. Burpees with a jump
 
Try it out and feel free to tinker with it so it suits you! For more exercise ideas check out the rest of our blog or book in for a free Personal training taster session at http://www.bourne-fit.co.uk/

How To Run Faster and Longer.

It’s getting to that time of year when everyone’s brushing the dust of the trainers, and taking to the beach or parks for a run. Running is a brilliant way of improving fitness, aiding weight loss and a great excuse to get off the sofa and out of the house, but everyone always wants to know one thing  “how do I run for longer without stopping?”.

 

Why you stop running?

This comes down to what is know as “the point of muscular fatigue”. This is when you are no longer able to maintain steady and constant muscle contractions, and once this kicks in, the legs start burning, heart rate increase, breathing rate quickens and you eventually stop! When this happens depends on factors like fitness level, speed, incline, energy levels, distance and hydration. Improving  this isn’t just as simple as running until you feel sick! There are techniques to help you run faster for longer!!!

 

Make the most of your arms!

Running isn’t just about your legs, generating power through your arms is key to going for longer. Bend the elbows at 90 degrees and really focus on driving forwards and backwards with your hands. Moving the hands will help generate power with the upper body and core, and give you more power in the legs!

 

Sprint interval training.

These sessions won’t be as long as your normal running session, but will be packed with more intensity! Short hard runs mixed with periods of very slow jogging for rest. For new runners this can be done with 200 meters of sprinting with 45 seconds of slow running for recovery, and then repeat until the end of your set distance. As you get better and feel more confident, begin to increase the sprint distance in 100 meter increments, or keep the intervals the same and increase the overall distance depending on your goals!

 

In the gym!

Building muscle strength in the gym can help when running. Extra leg strength and power means your stride becomes longer! This doesn’t mean you have to stick 200kg on the squat bar and have legs like a bodybuilder. Things as simple as box jumps, lunges and light squats for a few sets of 20 reps, a couple of times a week can add as much as 21% more endurance when running!

 

Getting your longer runs right.

Its good to have a longer run once a week, this will normally be 75-85% of your competitive distance. So if your training for a 10km run, training at 8km will be perfect. For marathon runners your long run would be 17 miles. These runs go hand in hand with intensity though. Going to easy too easy won’t give you the goals you’re after, and going too fast you will burn out before the end. Going at 80% of your fastest pace will get the best results, and still leave you something in the tank for a sprint finish to overtake your friends. 😉

 

Food and Drink.

An hours run on a warm day, you can lose over a liter of sweat! Being dehydrated will affect performance and cause fatigue to kick in sooner! So make sure you have plenty to drink before, after and even during! Your body uses energy from food to keep your muscles going, so remember to eat before and after your run.  It can be tempting to go running on an empty stomach when trying to lose weight, but if you run out of energy you’l have to stop sooner, and if you stop sooner you wont be burning as much fat as if you were still running! Eating properly after training will help recovery, and the sooner and better you recover,the quicker you’l be out running again! Read more on sports nutriton.

 

Don’t forget to take care of yourself! Stretching after training reduces the risk of injury and keeps your body supple. Flexible legs means a longer stride and that means going further! Make sure you listen to your body, its not hard for those little aches and pains to get worse. When you do have them, take a break and take it easy. These are normally a sign of going too hard too soon, so remember to ease into your training and slowly progress over time. If your injured, you can’t run! Fact! Read more…on recovery from exercise.

 

So just remember no matter what level your at with the right training and recovery you can improve! So whether training for a 5km fun run or the next London marathon, you’re all runners!!!

 

Fitness Basics : How often to exercise

As with everything there are differing opinions on what works best.  Here we will try and cover what works with frequency of exercise.

The American College of Sports Medicine recommend 30 minutes 5 times per week.  But how often we need to exercise really depends on the results we are looking for, age and  training experience.  A 20 year old triathlete would certainly be looking to do more than a 65 year old retiree.

When we exercise we overload the body, making it become fitter or stronger in the following hours of recovery.  This time differs, but recovery time is generally considered to be 36 to 48 hours which ties in nicely with the general approach of training 3-4 times per week.

The all important factor is intensity (see other articles).  Harder sessions will overload the body more and require more recovery. Our work and personal lives often dictate exercise frequency as well.  The outine however is fairly clear…

Want serious results?  Train 4 or even 5 times a week!

Struggling for time and energy? Not that serious?  Exercise twice a week is clearly better than none at all and you will realize some results.

Simon Lesser works as a Personal Trainer in  Bournemouth and Poole, Dorset.  See more info at www.simonlesser.co.uk.