Sofia first started at Personal Best as a personal training client of Eidolan’s after being referred by her physiotherapist some 11 years ago. Sofia was experiencing knee pain from the demands of being an elite junior soccer player.
Eidolan was pivotal in Sofia’s learnings of the body and the recovery process as she progressed her way through the Institute of Sport until she ceased her contract in 2013, to focus on her studies.
Like most Year 10 students, Sofia was required to complete a week of work experience.
“I chose to split my time between a Physio practice and here at Personal Best Fitness.
During this time, sport, or specifically soccer was part of my identity, so most of my thought processes revolved around supporting this passion in some way. My plan had been to complete my Certificate III and IV in Fitness during Year 11 & 12 and work as a personal trainer while at Uni and study medicine with the intention of bringing the learnings of movement into my practice as a doctor.”
After Sofia’s work experience, we approached Sofia as to whether she would like to be a part of our Front Desk team. Sofia had completed her fitness certification at the beginning of that year, before returning to school.
Sofia had been qualified as a personal trainer since 2014 but didn’t think of herself as having practiced as a personal trainer until she made the decision that medicine was not for her in 2017.
‘I decided to refocus on my mental health. As my mental health had suffered, so too had my love for a sport, which was once my identity, football. I had completely stepped away from football and took up cycling around this time. ‘
For anyone who knew Sofia prior to 2018, they would realise that there was a pretty big shift in not only the way she practised as a personal trainer, but also in the way she walked through life after completing her first activation course in 2018.
‘Having gone to a private school all my life, I don’t think I ever considered personal training as my one and only career option. It was always a steppingstone into what was next, which since I was a child, had always been medicine. In short, activation changed everything for me. From my confidence, stopping my forever frequent panic attacks, to even starting my own cycling tour business. I don’t think I ever considered myself to be a ‘personal trainer’ until sometime after I got back from this course in 2018.’
As a business owner it has given me immense pleasure to see Sofia grow not only as a fitness professional, but more importantly as a wonderful, kind and caring person.
‘Now as a Master Personal Trainer and all-rounder, I pride myself in being able to assist Amanda in the business with anything from front desk duties, teaching new staff, loving my role as a personal trainer or my favourite, teaching a group of people the concepts and practice of activation!’
I’ve been in the fitness industry for a while, I’l like to think for long enough to recognise the difference between function and fiction.
If there’s one thing that really bugs me about what I do, it’s what I call the “cerebral onanism” of human movement. You see human movement isn’t that hard, we all start practicing it long before we learn language, and yet I see you tube videos where the explanation of a movement, takes 10 times longer than the movement itself!
I often think, how am I supposed to teach all that instruction, in the time the movement takes?
I can label many of the muscles in the human body in Latin, and every good Personal Trainer should know flexors from extensors, but I cringe when I hear people primarily cuing muscles instead of movement.
If I can get through my life without ever seeing another fitness video where the trainer instructs participants to “engage your core”, I’ll be happy.
Because while human movement is easy, the human body is an incredibly complex system which thankfully is largely automated because without the automation we would all stop breathing the moment we went to sleep. There are many many muscles in the trunk that our body uses to stabilise the spine in response to different force vectors, velocities, and movements, a handful of which someone decided to label “core”.
The idea that I need to activate muscles in order to move well raises many questions, that I cannot think of good answers too, here are some examples:
I know that there are 3 branches of the thoracodorsal nerve that goes into each of my left and right Latissimus Dorsi, the big muscles in my back I use for pulling actions. But I can’t feel any of them, nor can I point to them without a textbook the way I can point to my big toe. So, If I cannot locate them by feel, how am I supposed calculate how many electrons I need to send to each branch to get the best results based on the angle of my shoulder when I’m pulling?
There are 10 muscles that stabilise the sole of my foot, I can’t think of two things at once, how am I supposed to think about 10?
Does anyone really think Logan was calculating which of his core muscles he needed to activate and how much, in response to his flipping/ twisting inertia and the rapidly changing direction of the pull of gravity when he was 6 metres off the ground in his freestyle BMX final, or was he just thinking about spotting his landing?
I once heard probably the best skateboarder in human history describe a trick as “it’s all in the big toe”, as opposed to saying, “I just activate my Extensor Hallucis Longus”, now if they are both the same thing why does it bug me?
Done well, explanations of what is occurring during a movement can be informative, and if the client/athlete believes that activating something helps, it probably does, because belief is a powerful performance enhancer. Athletes that believe in a god outperform those that don’t, regardless of which deity they believe in. Who remembers Power Bands?
But what matters is the movement and feeling confident in the movement.
I met someone at a function recently, he told me “I’ve been working with my trainer weekly for years, I never go to the gym without him, because I’m afraid of doing something wrong”,
I changed the topic so I could avoid telling him that if he continued doing this, he would never be fit, strong or healthy.
Similarly, I once overheard someone in the gym saying, “I’d much rather lift light weights with correct form, than trying to lift heavy weights”.
These are both examples of an idea becoming a barrier to movement and human movement is rarely, if ever perfect, but it improves with practice, without doing something wrong, you’ll never do it right.
Our body responds to stimulus, form follows function, it builds muscle in response to regular movement, it lays down myelin around the nerve sheath in response to repetition, tendons thicken in response to loading, our body produces Human Growth Hormone and Testosterone in response to strenuous lifting (heavy things). Lung capacity increases if we regularly get out of breath.
Lean muscle mass, and lung capacity are two of the more reliable predictors of longevity.
Some people don’t have the metrics to be great dead lifters, or rowers, me, I am too tall and have to much bulk to be a great hill climber on the bike. But that doesn’t mean I can’t ride my bike up hills, enjoy doing it, get benefit from it and get better at it. When I think of my most ‘successful’ clients, they all have one thing in common. It’s not a great knowledge of anatomy, nor is it the ability to activate many muscles at once while concentrating on the task at hand. It’s consistency, they exercise regularly, with many of them I know when they will be at Personal Best, even if I’m not there, and because of the work we have done together, I know they are safe and building strength and fitness while practicing the movements I have programmed for them.
I’ll leave you with a case study.
I spent over a decade coaching someone who loved competitive sport and worked very hard at it. During the 15 years we worked together he won state, national and world titles. When we first started working together, he told me “No matter how much I try I can’t activate my glutes”.
Glutes are a hip extensor, it quickly became apparent that he couldn’t get good extension from his hips, and because of this, his glutes were doing very little. So, we spent a year stretching his hip flexors, and all of a sudden, his glutes started working, no thought required! On his part anyway.
Master Personal Trainer
Have you recently woken up from a comfortable night’s sleep and opened your curtain, only to be greeted by an ever-darkening morning sky, the feeling of cold coming through the glass window against your face and thought to yourself, “Going out there for my morning walk just doesn’t look too enjoyable today.”? Despite this, you go anyway. Happy that you’ve stayed true to yourself and your fitness goals. But all the while wondering if there’s an easier and more comfortable way of doing this at such a time of year. Fortunately, I have a solution for you!
Indoor cycling classes can go by many different names. Spin, Spinning and Spin class are frequently used and what you may have heard your friends, family or other gym members speak of. Spin classes are typically 30 – 60 minutes long and simulate riding a bike outside by increasing and decreasing the “spin bike” resistance dial. Up hills, down hills, flat roads, standing or seated. You name it, a qualified indoor cycling instructor can put it into a Spin class! Whether you’re a novice gym goer, aspiring athlete or somewhere in between, spin classes can be of huge benefit to your mental and physical health, and overall wellbeing. In addition to these benefits, here are some reasons to make it a part of your weekly routine at Personal Best Fitness.
- The cycling action offers a low impact form of huff n puff exercise. Spin classes are perfect if you’re recovering from an injury, starring down the barrel of knee surgery or just feel as if you need to take things a little more gently on your joints. Regardless of your fitness goals, you will still achieve a great workout. A well-designed class by an experienced instructor will allow you to go at your own pace. Afterall, fitness and physical activity is about improving the way you look, feel and function.
- Whether you’re looking to increase your huff n puff fitness, lose weight or increase leg and core strength, spin classes can offer it all in a single workout. The action of pedalling with resistance will help your body deal with any instability as a result of weaker muscles. Increasing your heart rate will help you burn calories and increase your metabolic rate. You can burn up to 600 calories in a spin class. That’s the equivalent of 6 glasses of wine.
- Increasing heart rate for prolonged periods like you will experience in a spin class will help to increase your bodies tolerance to other physical activities such as weight training, bush walking or hanging out the washing.
- Beyond the physical benefits you gain from a spin class, you will not find a single person arguing about the benefits exercise can have on mental health. Increasing your heart rate and moving your body is scientifically proven to relieve stress and anxiety. This partly occurs as a result of the body producing endorphins, sometimes known as the “feel good” hormone. Spin classes are a great way to do this, along with the added social benefits of being in a room with like-minded people and the affect it can have on your mental well-being.
Here at Personal Best Fitness, we currently offer two spin classes per week. Both are 45 minutes in duration. This gives you enough time to properly warm your body up, enjoy a good workout and finally a cool down and stretch to aid the bodies recovery process. I invite you to join me for Spin on Wednesday at 6.15am or Saturday morning a 8am. We will help with your bike set up and teach you all you need to know.
Certified Spin Instructor
How often have you made it to the end of the week and thought ‘thank god it’s the weekend’? Or not wanted to do a workout only to finish it and feel a whole lot better? High intensity exercise has been a prevailing force in the fitness industry for the past 10 years. We get this big endorphin rush, it makes you sweat, feel good and forget your problems.
Movement is anti-inflammatory, hydrating and energising. It creates resilient tissues, hydrates, efficient mitochondria and cellular function, and is vital for the brain, mood and self confidence. However, we have seen a massive boom of exercise programs such as P90x, Crossfit and F45. All of which are types of HIIT training and are great programs when implemented at the right intensity, with the right recovery and with the correct frequency.
Unfortunately, a lot of these training methods aren’t true ‘HIIT’ sessions. HIIT stands for High Intensity Interval Training. It is designed to get your heart rate up or above 90% of its max, followed by an equal or longer period of time in your recovery zone, the ‘interval’ aspect of HIIT. It can help with fat loss, reduce your heart rate and blood pressure and results in an increased metabolic rate. The often misconception is that going harder means going for longer periods and resting for shorter periods. I’d definitely agree that these types of sessions are tough, but are they productive? A better description of the types of workouts listed above would be High Intensity Steady State Training, or fatigue sessions! I.e. you’re likely getting your heart rate into a moderate zone (not as high as a true HIIT workout), while not allowing yourself sufficient recovery.
It can take up to 48hrs for our body to recover after a high intensity training session. We create a high level of acidosis, resulting in the breakdown of muscle cells and the decrease in immune function. So by completing multiple of these sessions within a week, you are not only creating muscle breakdown, but you are releasing higher levels of cortisol and adrenaline into the body.
The thing is, our body doesn’t differentiate between physical and mental stress. So what are the repercussions of this constant cycle of our stressful, sedentary working life, interspersed with many bouts of high intensity training? Just like any form of stress, exercise releases cortisol and adrenaline into the body. In the right doses our body is able to adapt to this release and create positive changes, however if we’re not giving our body adequate time to recover (i.e. completing HIIT sessions often), this becomes detrimental to the system.
Being super fit and punishing yourself at the gym doesn’t equate to longevity. In fact it can do the opposite. Over training, under recovering, repetitive movement, too much muscle mass, and chronic cardio, are all examples of how movement can hurt you. There is no denying that people who chose to practice one sport are highly competitive in their chosen sport, however they’re rarely able to adequately replicate this ‘fitness’ across other sports. They’re often missing one key component; variability.
When it comes to longevity, the key component in training is variability. This means being strong and resilient for whatever comes your way. It means you can go fast, or slow, lift heavy, or light, move and adapt to awkward and challenge angles, etc. Variability means your tissue has the strength, tension and elasticity to respond to different speeds, loads, positions and vectors.
Our heart rate is a great responder to variability. It is important to have the ability to get your heart rate high (above 90% of heart rate max), for SHORT periods of time and it is just, if not more, important to have the ability to get your heart rate back down quickly and keep it there for sustained periods of time. We have looked at one form of heart rate variability training (HIIT), however we will have to save the full discussion for another time. For the time being, I want you to have a think about whether all of your training sessions are ‘smash fests’ in the gym or whether you are incorporating variability into your training and in fact aiming for wellness and longevity.
Signs you need to switch up your exercise and focus on wellness and longevity are:
- Chronic stiffness and pain
- Lack of mobility and strength in varied positions
- Lack of heart rate variability – HR stays high, won’t go up, or takes longer to recover!
- Unable to get down to the ground and up again with ease
- Coordination and balance challenges
- Are you struggling with complex movement sequences?
If any of these signs ring true in your ears, think about changing up your exercise routine or book in a personal training session with us to move and exercise more effectively and efficiently.
Senior Personal Trainer
One of the first questions we ask those who are new to Personal Best Fitness is “What would you like to achieve?” Often the response is “I want to get fit.” Sounds quite straight forward doesn’t it, but what does it actually mean? Getting fit means different things to different people. A common definition is,
“To be physically fit means to be in a state of health and well-being. Physical fitness is defined as the body’s ability to function efficiently and effectively in work and leisure activities, to be healthy, to resist disease and to react to emergency situations.
Helping a client “become fit” can take a variety of approaches and avenues and can be very different for ‘everybody and mind’.
There are 3 or 4 aspects of “Being Fit” that we may focus on with you at Personal Best:
- Improving your cardiovascular/aerobic fitness/ huff and puff.
- Help you increase your range of motion or flexibility.
- Improve your strength.
And we will program this in such a way that is functional to your needs.
The aspects that we focus on will depend upon your goals and how your body is currently functioning. It is important to recognise that different approaches and focuses will result in different outcomes and will facilitate significant improvements in both your health and fitness.
Cardiovascular fitness or endurance can be improved with exercise that is performed at a medium level, greater than 20 minutes in duration. This helps improve the health of your heart and lungs. Running, walking, rowing, swimming and bike riding are all activities that help enhance your cardiovascular or aerobic capacity.
The formula used to decipher what your exercise training zone is 220 – age =? divided by 65% and 85%. Below are some examples for a 40 and 60-year-old who is looking to work at either training zone.
If you are age 40 years a ‘starting’ exercise zone would be a heart rate of 117 beats per minute (bpm) and the high-end intensity would be 153bpm.
If you are aged 60 years a ‘starting’ zone would be a rate of 104 bpm and a high-end zone would be 136bpm.
When getting started at Personal Best your personal trainer will direct you to the appropriate zone for you, taking into consideration the following:
- Your health
- If you have done vigorous exercise recently
- Any aches and pains that you may have
- And what goals you have
These zones should be viewed as a guide and individual advice should be sort.
Flexibility refers to the range of movement in a joint or series of joints, and length in muscles that cross the joints to induce a bending movement or motion. Flexibility varies between individuals, particularly in terms of differences in muscle length of multi-joint muscles. Some examples of multi joint muscles are the hamstrings, which cross both the hip and knee joints.
Flexibility in some joints can improve their range of movement. Stretching being a common medium to maintain or improve this range of movement. Stretch receptors have two parts: Spindle cells and Golgi tendons. Spindle cells, located in the centre of a muscle, send messages for the muscle to contract. On the other hand, golgi tendon receptors are located near the end of a muscle fibre and send messages for the muscle to relax. As these receptors are trained through continual use, stretching becomes easier. When reflexes that inhibit flexibility are released joints are then able to have greater range of movement.
There are a number of reasons why strength training is important. Some of these reasons are to maintain muscle tissue to protect your joints, build and maintain strong bones, control body fat, and decrease the risk of injury. Depending on what your goals are, your personal trainer will set your program accordingly.
- If it is hypertrophy that you are after then 4 reps at 90% of your maximum load to 10 reps at 75% of your maximum load is required. Hypertrophy is a term for the growth and increase of the size of muscle cells.
- If muscular endurance is what you are after approximately 15 to 20 reps at 70% is required. Muscular endurance is the ability of a muscle or group of muscles to sustain repeated contractions against a resistance for an extended period of time. Some of the activities that require muscular endurance are, sustained walking or running, cycling, swimming, circuit training, aerobics and of course resistance training.
Functional exercises train your muscles to work together and prepare them for daily tasks by simulating common movements you might do at home, work or in sports. For example, a squat is a functional exercise because it trains the muscles that you use when you stand up and sit down from a chair or pick up objects off the ground.
When rehabilitating a client from injury, or building function back into their daily life, exercises are ‘regressed’ so that the client can move with confidence again and trust their bodies as they perform these movements. Understanding how the body moves is part of the rehabilitation process and the personal trainers at Personal Best are able to deliver this knowledge with skill and professionalism. Some of the exercises personal trainers prescribe their clients may be walking along a plank of wood on the ground heel to toe to improve balance, reaching up the wall with one hand while in a staggered stance, to improve posture. These types of exercises then lead to more complex forms of movement and with weights and or resistance.
“Being fit” has so many different meanings. Ask the question, fit for what? Fit to wash the car, run a fun run, pick the grandkids up, play netball, or fit to walk 15000 steps each day on holidays. All of these things are important as long as they are gradually progressed and applied in an individual manner. Remember, not everything fits the same person and we all require different approaches. Your goals over time will evolve as you progress along the continuum that is your fitness.
If you are unsure what is ‘best’ for you, ask us about booking a personal training session.
Master Personal Trainer
Amanda worked in the fitness industry on a casual basis since 1986 and founded Personal Best Fitness in February 1998 after working as a teacher for seven years.
‘I became frustrated with dealing with large groups of children for small amounts of time and prescribing first workout programs and never seeing the client again.
Moving into the field of personal training successfully addressed this for me’.
Until December 2005 Personal Best Fitness was a personal training consultancy working out of another health club. The initial client base was derived from writing to the parents of the children that Amanda taught and word of mouth.
It then became a dream to provide the clients of Personal Best Fitness with a facility that had a warm and friendly atmosphere and that inspires its members and clients.
After a year of planning this health and fitness club was a unique concept in Tasmania. Our premises were once the science labs for Hobart High School and when we started our renovations the periodical table was still on the wall!
As a result of business growth, in early 2006 Personal Best Fitness opened, as you know it today, offering memberships as well as personal training and then in 2007 group exercise was added.
Our aim to bring our members and clients, the highest level of professionalism, expertise and knowledge in helping you to look, feel and function better.
At Personal Best we achieve this by building and maintaining relationships, with our customers that is why we are not ‘just a gym’. Our belief is that every client is different and has a right to a membership and exercise program that suits their needs, goals and lifestyle.
We provide you with life changing experiences, by regular structured staff education and training programs, with the aim that you feel valued by ALL our team.
During our 22 years in the fitness industry we have expanded into the Corporate Health and Wellbeing space and conducted a number of programs for the likes of Norske Skog, Nystar, Hydro Tasmania, Tasmanian Audit Office, Glenview, Education Department and the MS Society.
We are now proud to say that we are the most awarded fitness business in Tasmania and are the only gym in Tasmania to be Quality Accredited with Fitness Australia.
Thank you for being a part of our journey as we continue to help you look, feel and function better.
In my previous article , I wrote about the importance of exercise and exercise variability on mental health. I’m going to expand on this topic in regards to what is happening in the brain and the tissue and how that can be incorporated into exercise.
Regular physical activity plays a crucial role in health maintenance and disease prevention. However there is an increasing occurrence of excessive exercise among certain population groups, which have adverse effects on both physical and mental health. I want to set a framework to help you find balance and question your perspective about what exercise is for you and how you approach it.
I believe, all too often in our society we approach exercise as something we have to do often because we want to lose weight or use it as a mechanism to keep on top of our mental health. Both of these reasons are perfectly valid and effective forms to achieve such outcomes, however I want to prompt you to think about why it is you exercise and whether what you are doing is enjoyable.
In my previous article I wrote about the Default Mode Network (DNM) and how it is active when a person is focused internally, e.g. Ruminating, and is less active when focused on attention-demanding tasks. Previously I wrote that a hyperactive DMN is associated with mental health issues such as obsessive behaviour, anxiety and depression. I explained how a hyperactive DMN results in less neural patterning, meaning we continue to strengthen the same neural networks, therefore have the same thought processes, increasing our anxious thoughts.
When relating this to exercise, one of my favourite sayings is ‘create more movement options’. What does this mean? Simple.
Move more, move different and move more often .
It doesn’t matter HOW you move, as long as you are spending time doing different exercises, reaching in different planes of motion and getting your heart rate UP and DOWN in different increments regularly. Any exercise is good exercise, however if relating this to our brain activity, we want to be able to keep exercise enjoyable and variable in order to thrive rather than survive in everyday life.
Having spent a lot of time working with cyclists, I always think they’re the quintessential example of what we’re talking about here. Cyclists are by nature pretty obsessive people! They often have what we term ‘type-A’ personalities, i.e. they’re ambitious, rigidly organised and status conscious. They’re your classic ‘high achievers’. Cyclists spend a lot of time in the same position, often a lot of time in a similar heart rate zone and, are quite often in high achieving occupations.
Which comes first, the obsessive behaviour or the rigid exercise routine? It’s a chicken or egg situation. Someone with a type-A personality is likely to be more attracted to endurance sports, e.g. cycling, running etc, because being driven in this sport is what allows them to excel at it, however too much of this type of activity, ie. low neural patterning, will also result in a hyperactive DMN.
There is nothing ‘wrong’ with cycling itself (I spend a lot of time riding bikes myself), however for people who spend a lot of time doing one thing, even sitting at a desk, should consider creating more movement patterns.
This is where at Personal Best Fitness we see the benefit of implementing tools such as ViPRs in your exercise routine. ViPRs bridge the gap between movement and strength. By shifting weight, rather than lifting it against gravity, engaging your muscles with variable stimuli. They allow us to adapt to new movement patterns by stretching and loading as you move, resulting in a lean, long and strong system.
“Any exercise is good exercise, as long as what you are doing resembles what you ‘think’ you are doing.”
Written by Senior personal trainer, Sofia Tsamassiros
Most group exercise regulars have done a class with Larnie, who greets you with a smiling face. Larnie has been teaching group exercise for some 30 years after completing what was known as the Fitness Leaders course in 1989, as a 17 year old at the University of Lismore. Larnie’s early days as an instructor were very much Jane Fonda style, where she taught on the Gold Coast and also at a Swiss Boarding school. In the late 90’s Larnie moved to St Helens and opened up a small gym and also taught classes at St Helens High School.
Some years later she updated her skills to include spin and kick boxing. However her true love is teaching step classes. Larnie has been in Hobart now for 10+ years and at Personal Best for over 6 years. After 3 decades in the fitness industry, Larnie still has the same passion and love for teaching classes.
“ I just love the enthusiasm of those who come to my classes and also the social contact that brightens all of our days”.
Lifting weights both pin loaded and free weights is Larnie’s favourite form of exercise for herself. Away from fitness Larnie enjoys all things Thai and to relax she enjoys horse riding, a good movie and a Kahlua on ice. Larnie favourite quote is;
“time waits for no man and neither do I”.
Throughout the year we work at keeping to routine, exercising regularly and making appropriate food choices. During the festive season there are many temptations and we can ‘undone’ much of our years good work.
Here are tips to help you ‘maintain your gains’ during the month of December.
1. Stay Active
Staying Active over the silly season is a great way to stay on top of your goals. Your body doesn’t know what time of year it is, so keep exercising, you will be happier and healthier for it.
2. Keep Hydrated
In between the Christmas cheer make a deliberate attempt to drink water.Not only will this help to keep you hydrated but increase your ability to get the most out of your muscles during the next workout you do.
Allow yourself to enjoy your Christmas lunch and or dinner. This shouldn’t be a stressful time for you if you are focused on weight loss. Enjoy your food on Christmas Day, just don’t continue on the ‘merriness’ of it for days afterwards.
4. To say ‘I don’t have time,’ is like saying, ‘I don’t want to.”– Lao Tzu.
Think for a moment about the things you domake time for… your health and quality of life can be scheduled in somewhere.
5. Short Term Goals
Set yourself some. Make them SMART – Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Timely.
6. Plan Ahead
If you are travelling during the festive season, eat something before you go to avoid stopping for fast food. Take a bottle of water in the car with you so you can hydrate as you go.
7. Set Realistic Plans
Make time for yourself. Cramping too much in can stress and drain you.
8. Suggest Healthy alternatives as gifts
If someone asks you what they can buy you for Christmas, why not suggest a walk along the beach instead, a swim at the pool.
9. This is OK
If you receive that box of chocolates, re-gift them…this is ok…or share them with your visitors.
10. Be Mindful
Eating for the sake of eating is something we do often. Especially in times of celebration. Be mindful of the amount of food you are eating and when you are eating it. Ask yourself . . . am I hungry?
11. Book a Personal training session
Whether it be for a program up date to start the New Year or to ensure you do some exercise in the break. It is a great way to stay strong.
12. “The best thing about time is that it comes one day at a time’ – Abraham Lincoln
We can achieve the most amazing goals if we take things a step at a time.
Master Personal Trainer
If you google fad diets you will likely come up with a never-ending list:
2019 Best and Worst Fad Diets for Weight Loss
and underneath that is a list of the 5 most common forms of fad diets.
Many of us want to lose weight and we want to have lost it yesterday!
Rather than going down the fad diet pathway, why not look at working on sustainable, healthy life long changes.
Research suggests that fad diets fall into five general groups:
- Food – specific diets, which encourage eating large amounts of a single food, such as the cabbage soup diet.
- Low-Carb diets, such as the Atkins diet, which first became popular in the 1970’s.
- High fibre, low – calorie diets, which often prescribe double the amount of recommended dietary fibre.
- Liquid diets, such as SlimFast meal replacements drinks.
Fad diets are generally restrictive, and are characterized by the promise of fast weight loss or great physical health, and which are not grounded in sound research. They ‘seduce’ those that are willing to ‘try anything’ to lose weight at the expense of their own health.
The problem with fad diets is that they don’t address, in any way, the lifestyle circumstances that cause the weight gain initially. In fact, fad diets can be detrimental to your health and increase the risk of heart disease and develop a ‘Yo Yo’ effect on your weight. Imagine your body going up and over speed humps all day. Eventually, your body would lose its ‘spring’, as the shock absorbers in your car would, and you wouldn’t be able to continue. You may become sick, lose motivation and or just give up as many do.
Consider the following:
- Start by removing the word ‘diet’ from your vocabulary. When the time is right for you avoid saying ‘you are on a diet’, but rather you are improving your health by making better choices.
- Slow down with the time frame you give yourself to lose the weight you have gained. Weight creeps on gradually, you may not always notice it straight away, but it’s that one morning when you wake up and think how did that get there. Weight is generally gained over a long period of time, so make a realistic goal with your personal trainer about how you can shred it safely and keep it off. Small goals often achieve big results.
- Understand how your body reacts to the food you eat. Ask a personal trainer to explain this to you. Understanding the ‘why’ may help when you are about to make that not so good choice.
- Forget about what other people are doing to lose weight. Concentrate on your own lifestyle, your own situation and set realistic goals accordingly.
- Have less time sitting in front of the TV and introduce a sustainable exercise regime. Talk with a personal trainer about a weekly plan. About how many times you should exercise, what program you should do on what day and how these best fit with your personal training session.
In essence, avoiding fad diets and becoming more aware of your own lifestyle and not comparing it to others, becoming aware of what you are eating and when you are eating it are two key steps in becoming a fitter, healthier person who can function at their best.
Master Personal Trainer