I am incredibly fortunate to have carved myself a career doing what I love.
I started work in health and fitness at 18 years old and whilst it hasn’t always been easy (in fact far from it) it has been incredibly rewarding for me.
My work has now been seen by millions of people worldwide, but it didn’t start here it all started as it does for most fitness professionals, at the bottom of the food chain.
I have worked in big corporate gyms and private personal training studios. I have also owned and run my own gym for 6 years and in this time have amassed a full credit list of over 30 productions, from the Wolverine and X-Men to assassins creed and Les Misérables.
One of my key beliefs and strategies is to always be improving my knowledge. I want to try and learn it all and put it into practice so my customers can achieve more than they imagined possible.
One of the biggest lessons for me in my 10+ years training people has been to affectively apply this knowledge in a way that actually works. You can have the best plans and strategies in the world but if you are unable to follow them they are useless.
Here are 3 strategies and feel most important for longevity when it comes to training.
Longevity over idealism
Health and fitness is a long game and you need to think where you will be in 10 years, 20 years, 30 years.
For a long time with my own training I battled on performing the “best” exercises for progress with pain and discomfort.
I amounted great strength in the squat and deadlift, not until recently discovering a spinal defect that has become problematic.
The lesson here is that there are no good or bad exercises. There are only good and bad exercises for you.
Select movements that work best for yourself and don’t worry if the most popular of movements don’t make your routine. You will still make progress if your plan is right.
Less extreme eating
One of the biggest trends I see in fitness grow every year is the extreme diet. When I say extreme it could be a diet with far too few calories, far too many or one that sacrifices foods to try and make a difference.
The truth is the extreme nature of these diets only serves to try and control some basic rules that are actually pretty simple to manage.
Energy balance and food quality are two things worth focussing on. You can eat the foods you enjoy whilst still making progress if you are providing your body with the correct amount of energy. You don’t need to cut out bread to get lean or to go Keto for fat loss.
The only diets that work are the ones that provide you the correct amount of energy for your goals. These diets are most effective when they are created with foods you enjoy and will stick with consistently. Focus on the basics not on extreme measures.
Less is more
I often get asked how many hours a day I train. Whilst there have been periods in my life when I have trained for multiple hours a day, this isn’t needed for the results most people want.
Training more will not always achieve more and often can be counterproductive for progress.
My current set up is to the minimum amount of work required for maximum amount of progress. The reason for this is it is sustainable, more enjoyable and I still get what I want out of it.
A common trend for fat loss plans is drastically increasing cardiovascular training volume and intensity to burn extra calories.
Is this sustainable?
Or would it be more sustainable to reduce the duration of these efforts and simple reduce calorie intake slightly.
Just like with diet, the exercise routines that work are the ones that you follow. So, don’t try and plan to do too much.
My approach to health and fitness over the years has evolved a lot and I have no doubt there are still more changes to come.
What new lessons will you have learned in 5-10 years times?