Posts tagged conditioning
Coffee: The Ultimate Pre-Workout (But NOT Post Workout) Drink

The Facts

There are numerous scientific studies that demonstrate that coffee is a potent ergogenic (a drug with the capability for increasing capacity for bodily or mental labour especially by eliminating fatigue symptoms.) It can increase fat burning during training, heighten an athlete’s ability to perform optimally and improve work capacity.

However, if you drink it post-workout, you will delay recovery and elevate the stress hormone cortisol just when you need to clear it.

This is due to two factors that we should be aware of. Cortisol and the Parasympathetic nervous system. 

Exercising naturally elevates cortisol. If you are training hard enough to trigger an adaptive response then you are exposing the body to an acute bout of stress. 

After exercising you want to do everything you can to help the body metabolise that cortisol so that you get rid of all the metabolic by-products of training. If cortisol remains high, waste won’t be removed, tissue won’t be rebuilt as quickly, recovery will be delayed, and you’ll feel fatigued for longer.

Caffeine has been shown to elevate cortisol, and at the least, its presence in the body will slow the metabolism of cortisol.

But what does it mean?!

To avoid the risk of coffee ruining your recovery, drink your caffeine pre-workout.

Post-workout do the following instead:

  • Take Magnesium to replenish lost electrolytes 
  • Take Vitamin C. As little at 2mg post workout can clear excess caffeine and cortisol thus speeding up recovery
  • Drink Green Tea. Green Tea contains numerous antioxidants that can accelerate recovery and it has not been found to elevate cortisol to the same extent as coffee, this may be due to the l-theanine present in the tea which exerts a calming effect on the body.
  • Finally give your body time to recover before you drink, eat or take anything else…

The Parasympathetic Nervous system

Sometimes called the rest and digest system, the parasympathetic system conserves energy as it slows the heart rate, increases intestinal and gland activity, and relaxes sphincter muscles in the gastrointestinal tract. The Parasympathetic Nervous system is the opposite to the sympathetic nervous system which is linked in part to our fight and flight response, a response that is wide awake when we are working out.

If we want to recover post workout and get the best from our post workout nutrition, we need to spend time moving from the sympathetic nervous system back into the parasympathetic nervous system.

The Meathead myth about a “Metabolic window” is not quite true as actually downing a ton of protein shake and food right after training could lead to more fat storage and wasted energy as your body is still reacting to it’s fight or flight response. Eating 15 minutes later when your heart rate has slowed down would lead to better intake of nutrients and less energy stored as fat. 

So how do we start our recovery process and activate our parasympathetic nervous system? 

  • Pranayama (Deep Breathing): Following your workout lay down and start to breath deeply, 4 to 5 seconds in, hold for 4 to 5 seconds then breath out, again taking 4 to 5 seconds to do so. 
  • Elevate your legs: enhance your breathing by finding a declined bench or wall to put your feet against, practice your Pranayama, this doesn’t “drain lactic acid” or “help with circulation” as the old wives tales would lead you to believe, but it does align your diaphragm and pelvic floor, facilitating better belly breathing and the relaxed position allows you to slow your BPM quicker than standing.

Train hard and recover well,

COACHES CORNER - Stop Dysfunction: Prevent Injury and Increase Performance by Warming Up Correctly

It was my first time playing for the seniors, I was 15 and knew nothing about anything, up until this point every game from warm up to cool down was run by a coach, I had never really thought about how or why I should warm up.

Anyway, I turned to the senior captain and asked what I should do to warm up, he replied “ah just summa deez and then we will be good to go” swinging his arms out and in a couple of times, touched the floor, shook out his legs and he was done. 

I responded in kind and got ready for the game, 5 minutes in my hamstring popped, I missed the rest of the season and to this day 15 years later I still have issues with my left hamstring.

What I now know is that a warm up isn’t just there to raise your heart rate, anyone who has been made to “just run a lap” ahead of a game or training session will know that is often the extent of a warm up, but a good warm up is also able to mobilise (open up) our joints and prepare for the activity we are about to perform, a great warm up and cool down will even take some time to work on existing dysfunctions and work towards fixing them.

I could write a thesis on the myriad of common drills to help mobilise and correct dysfunctions in athletes so let’s looks at just two areas the Shoulders and the Hips, these are the two major joints we use while powerlifting and the two areas where I tend to see the most dysfunction; I will give you a way to mobilise and activate the muscles and joints, both of which will potentially improve each joints function and help prevent injury. 


The Shoulders

Mobilise: Shoulder Dislocates

A simple exercise to open up your shoulder joint that only requires a mini band or light weight pole simple hold the band wider than shoulder width with your elbows locked out and bring it over your head down towards your bum, release your elbows and bring it back over your head. Do this slowly and feel the stretch at the band contracts against the movement, to advance the movement, bring your hands closer together. 

Activation: Banded Y’s 

This exercise also only requires a mini band to perform, simply loop your band around a fulcrum at hip height, from there grab the band with your hands wider than your shoulders similar to the last exercise. Keep your arms straight and bring them up either side of your head to create a Y shape, squeeze at the very top of the movement to activate not only your shoulders but the rest of your upper back. 


The Hips

Mobilise: Hip Grinder

Setting up in a push up position bring one foot up and outside of your elbow, keeping the heel down on the ground, from there we are going to move around holding this position, push into your hips over and over again using your hips to create a figure of 8 motion. You should feel your whole hip girdle loosen as we progress, change legs and repeat as needed. 

A variation using a mini band can be shown here, however this exercise is perfectly good without band resistance: 


Activation: Fire Hydrants 

Set yourself on the floor on your hands and knees, clamp your heel tightly to your glute and then draw progressively bigger and bigger circles with your knee, remember to resist the urge to kick out with your foot instead focusing on keeping your heel as close to your glute as possible.

We demonstrate this exercise in our Youtube series, the exercise has been timestamped for you below: 


Want to learn more about improving your shoulders and hips?

Check out our video series below:

Fixing Hip Impingement & Hip Pain

Fixing tight Necks, Shoulders & Hips 


Remember to implement these movements before your next session at the gym, and keep those shoulders and hips healthy!

Strength & Conditioning Coach

P.S. If you want some more information about both training and nutrition, join our FREE Facebook Group The Fit Life Community. We'll give you advice on your own training, and you can get the answers to those burning questions!

Join our FREE Facebook group here:

5 Stages of Being AVERAGE

A really ruthless one today folks! 

But hey, the truth hurts right?


So spend 5 mins reading this and be truly honest with yourself


This world is full of opportunity, believe me.

Nobody deserve to be average in any area

So just know that if you’re experiencing less than desirable fitness results right now

That’s down to your mind not being razor sharp

And hey, sometimes you just don’t have the tools you need to succeed, right!?

That’s where a coach comes in

Someone who can give you those tools.


But sometimes you KNOW what to do, but you aren’t doing the work.

So what the hell is going on here?


Well, I call it the 5 stages of average….








These come out in the form of reasons why you can’t/haven’t/won’t achieve your goals


Ever said any of the following?



“I’m not that overweight”

“I’d only need 6 weeks to get in shape”



“I can’t believe I’ve let myself get this fat!!”

“My fitness is gone, I’m so weak”



“I’ll go to the gym….just after I’m back from my holiday”

“I’ll eat clean monday to friday, but I’m not giving up wine on the weekends”



“I’ll never look like J-Lo! My genetics are shite”

“I hate training, I’ll never be in shape”



“Well, I guess this is just the body I’ve been given”

“I’ve never been very strong, that’s just how it is”



Thinking or saying any of the above is a HUGE indicator of a problem.


The problem?



Fuck being average

You don’t deserve average

You deserve AMAZING

And there’s 5 things you need to cure being average






Whatever you want to call it, step your shit up and average just won’t feature in your life.


Look, life is hard, fitness can be confusing

But YOU must depend on YOU

Catch yourself saying any of the above and realise that you’re on the path to average if you don’t change to a new model of thinking

Don’t add in healthy eating to unhealthy THINKING

It’s like putting premium fuel into a rusty old car

Won’t make much of a difference


Instead work hard to have a SHIFT in your mind

Be prepared to put in 10 times the effort, actions and time you originally thought necessary and you will smash through your body’s natural resistance to change

Normally people get the basics RIGHT in fitness

> Clean eating? 


> Intense training?


> Support and training partners?



Yet they don’t account for the fact that the time, repetition, effort and hustle necessary to achieve their goal may require 10X what they originally thought

You may have to eat clean for 6 months before your body learns to rebuild itself from 6 years of eating shit

You may have to train hard for 12 months before you get above a base level of strength

You may have to change gyms and continually push yourself to more and more positive environments


It ain’t cut and dry

It isn’t the same for everyone

But what I can guarantee

Is if you move from the 5 stages of average

To an OBSESSED mindset

You’ll be a different person from day one.

Once you realise that success is a journey, you have to keep pushing for the rest of your life

You don’t just make a few changes and get in shape then get to keep the benefits forever

So learn a way of living and training that will make your life change


If you guys want any help at all just send me an email at


Speak soon

Anthony Shaw

Head Coach

Raw Strength Gym, Warrington


Mindset, SuccessAnthony Shawaverage, aggression, bootcamps in warrington, body transformation warrington, body transformation, built body transformation, beginners training advice, basic training warrington, birchwood park, BIRCHWOOD PARK GYM, beginners, building, clean eating, change, Clarity, consistent, coaching, crossfit warrington, conditioning, denial, bargaining, diet, discipline, education, first time, fitness trainer, fitness classes, fitness, fear, gym, goal setting, gyms near me, GYM IN WARRINGTON, growth, gains, group training, goal, GYMS IN WARRINGTON, gyms in warrington, group fitness, goals, health, intensity, improvement, weakness, lean girls, lean girls body transformation, lifestyle, LAZY BUT LEAN, movie star, mental toughness, mistakes, mistake, meal preparation, muscle building, mindset, muscle gain, new training, nutritionist warrington, NUTRITION, new tips, nutrition warrington, obsession, planning, personal trainer warrington, problems, private gym, positive mental attitude, performance training, personal, private gym warrington, private performance gym, PERSONAL TRAINING, professional, productivity, private coaching, strength gains, simple program, vital performance, variety, visualisation, david lloyd warrington, movements not muscles, private, motivation, WARRINGTON, warrington fat loss, warrington weight loss, warrington strength and conditioning, warringtons best gym, warrington gym, weight loss programme, warrington powerlifting, weight loss, warrington, warrington personal training, workout, warrington body transformation, weight loss warrington, warrington best gym, warrington bootcamp
WHEN Should I See Progress?

I get this a lot, clients and friends who are on a new exercise regime approach me with a worried grin and say the exact same phrase, one filled with doubt and laced with the anxious tone of one who has lost their direction...

"I don't feel like I'm making any progress"

This is a natural feeling for those who are around four weeks into a new programme, after all a month feels a long time, you are settling into your exercise, crushing every workout and the initial 'back to the gym' shock has worn off.

You start to feel like you should be SEEING progress as well as feeling it.

This isn't how your body works however...

It is possible to see and feel some strength and conditioning gains within your first few weeks, but noticeable differences in your physique (when coupled with a kick ass nutrition system) takes longer.

The old adage is true; it takes at least four weeks for you to see and feel a difference, eight weeks for your friends and family to see a difference and twelve weeks for the rest of the world to see a difference.

BUT this requires the right type of training, an experienced and skilled coach to keep you motivated and progressing, and a nutritional system specific for you and your goals PLUS the last final secret ingredient...

A mix of desire, passion, character and belief.

This is going to be hard, harder than you think.

There will be dark moments. Cold, rainy mornings where you could quite easily miss the gym and stay wrapped up in bed.

But those that ignore the weather, the free donuts in the break room; those are the people who progress, who reach their goals and carry on reaching greater heights.

Make sure you stay consistent, and regularly measure progress (BUT stay off the scales!) and I assure you, change will happen!

Speak soon, 

P.S. Next week I will talk about a different area of judging progress, more specifically strength and max rep testing... Speak soon!

Fat Loss, Mindset, SuccessAnthony Shawbootcamp, built body transformation, beginners, BIRCHWOOD PARK GYM, birchwood park, basic training warrington, body transformations, body transformation, beginners training advice, bootcamps in warrington, built, body transformation warrington, clean eating, change, Clarity, coach, coaching, consistent, diet, DIET, daily routine, discipline, david lloyd warrington, dw fitness, education, fear, fitness, fat loss warrington, fitness trainer, fitness training, fat loss, gyms in warrington, gyms near me, group training, GYMS IN WARRINGTON, GYM IN WARRINGTON, group fitness, gains, goal setting, goals, gym, goal, growth, progression, PERSONAL TRAINING, health, improvement, lifestyle, lean girls, lean girls body transformation, motivation, muscle gain, muscle building, nutrition warrington, nutritionist warrington, nutrition, NUTRITION, nutritionist, conditioning, workout, performance training, planning, personal trainer, performance gym, private gym warrington, pure gym warrington, progressive overload, personal development, personal trainer warrington, positive mental attitude, simple training, simple program, tribe, team tone, training, team spirit, training program, TEAM TONE, team work, the body coach, visualisation, movie star, vital performance, WARRINGTON GYM, weight loss programme, warrington best gym, warrington gym, warrington fat loss, WARRINGTON, warrington body transformation, warrington weight loss, warrington bootcamp, warrington, warrington strength and conditioning, warrington personal training, weight loss warrington, warringtons best gym, warrington powerlifting, crossfit warrington, strength and conditioning warringtonwarrington bootcampwarrington body transformationanthony shaw
How to Kick Ass & Get Stronger in SEPTEMBER

They say there are TWO starts to the year

Jan 1st

And September 1st

It’s when the schools go back to class, university starts, lots of sporting seasons fire up

So let’s use this as a re-set for the mind and body!

I don’t want you to be like most people from now on.

If you want a leaner, stronger body - will doing what you’ve done over the past 3 months get you there?

Only you know. 

SO be honest!


MOST people will ignore their health progressively through Sept > Nov

MOST people will hit ZERO workouts in December

MOST people will start being aware of their lack in fitness around Dec 31st

MOST people will set a New Year’s Resolution to get in shape Jan 1st onwards

…..which always ends up being Jan 2nd or 3rd after the inevitable hangovers and weekends etc.


My question is:



Why the hell would you want to waste…..let me just check the exact amount of days left this year….

121 DAYS left in 2016!!!


Our top, TOP program can get someone ripped to the bone, in incredible shape in 84 days

And we could still run 1 and a half of those programs before Dec 31st!

Our group programs get people to drop an average of 1.5 stone in 84 days

And so we could get 2.25 stone lost before the end of 2016!

MOST people won’t bother with the facts and will instead make excuses


“I don’t have time, September is so busy for me”

And on, and on, and on.


Do you think excuses are valid or helpful ways of progressing your life though?

Cos look, you have MORE than enough resources to create not only a massive change in your health and fitness

But a TOTALLY NEW lifestyle, new personality, feelings of boundless energy and confidence every day and on and on after that.


Let’s look at the facts right now….

> You have an UNLIMITED amount of times you can put healthy food into your mouth

> You have an UNLIMITED amount of times you can ask for help from a coach

> You have an UNLIMITED amount of times you can wake-up 30 minutes early and go for a walk, stretch or meditate (breathe!)

> You have an UNLIMITED amount of times you can walk into a gym and train your body


There is NO shortage of these things

Until you die, of course

But do you want to die now and wait 50 years to make it official?

Or do you want to live your strongest self today?


Take some action

Email us at and let’s talk about your goals


Have a great day


Fat Loss, Mindset, Fitness, SuccessAnthony Shawbuilt body transformation, beginners training advice, body transformation warrington, birchwood park, BIRCHWOOD PARK GYM, body transformations, body transformation, built, bootcamps in warrington, conditioning, crossfit warrington, coaching, cheat meal, clean eating, consistent, Clarity, change, coach, discipline, daily routine, dw fitness, diet, david lloyd warrington, education, easy strength, EASY MEALS, fear, fitness, fitness training, first time, FITNESS TRAINER, fitness trainer, fitness classes, fat loss, fast, fat loss warrington, four hour work week, goals, gym, gains, group training, GYMS IN WARRINGTON, goal, growth, goal setting, gyms near me, gyms in warrington, GYM IN WARRINGTON, group fitness, health, hard labour gym, the body coach, hypertrophy, shortcuts, improvement, unknown, workout, weakness, quick workout, mistakes, lifting, lazy but lean, lean girls body transformation, LEAN GIRLS, lean girls, lifestyle, mental, muscle gain, NUTRITION, nutritionist, nutritionist warrington, new training, nutrition warrington, nutrition, north west, orford jubilee gym, positive mental attitude, private, personal trainer warrington, problems, private coaching, push, private gym warrington, pure gym warrington, personal development, performance gym, personal trainer, productivity, professional, PERSONAL TRAINING, personal, quick healthy meals, risley, self belief, training program, TEAM TONE, tips, team spirit, team work, team tone, training, tribe, trainer, vital performance, movie star, warrington best gym, warrington weight loss, warringtons best gym, warrington personal training, warrington powerlifting, warrington body transformation, warrington fat loss, warrington gym, WARRINGTON, weight loss, weight loss programme, WEIGHT LOSS, weight loss warrington, WARRINGTON GYM, warrington strength and conditioning, warrington, warrington bootcamp
8 Ways to Re-Ignite Fitness After Summer

Good morning Raw Strength fans!

It’s a tough time of year

Self-reflection time!

Realising that you probably haven’t been as healthy as you should have been is painful

I’ll include myself in this for sure, I’ve had a great summer!

But when you need to get focused, what are the best ways?

I’ve put together a quick list of my favourite ways that myself and my clients use to re-focus MENTALLY on fitness…


1) Agree a date with yourself to START taking fitness seriously again. And make a 30 day calendar to tick off the days and build momentum. Put that calendar on your fridge door.

2) Think back to when you were getting the best results…..what were you doing that you could now replicate? Make a quick list and begin!

3) Alcohol consumption likely increased due to more weddings, parties, holidays over the summer….start ordering still water or diet coke at your next meal out and just exercise a little control again - have a beer or glass of wine at the meal AFTER that, of course. But be healthy at your next social event, just to prove to yourself that you can.

4) Go one month without ordering takeaways, grabbing a frozen pizza or ready meal - make your own meals for one month.

5) Finish every workout with a 10-15 minute INTENSE burst of conditioning work. Burpees, sprints on the rowing machine, kettle bell complexes, hurricanes, tabata front squats and interval work are my go-to methods. This inspires you to eat clean, cos what’s the point going through that much pain only to ruin it with shite eating habits!

6) Join or create a team of positive people to train with. This might be a new sport, a new group training program (hint hint!), or just a quality group of friends to have fun with and hang out in the gym. 

7) SHIFT the way you think about fitness from a short-term intensive period, to a long-term ‘for the rest of my life’ mindset. You will have your body until you die. Look after it. 

> Don’t retreat into apathy and ignore glaring issues such as joint pain, muscle tightness, body fat gain etc. 

> Don’t do a 14 day bikini body plan then spend 3 years getting fat. 

> DO slowly spend 3 years getting lean in an enjoyable way then spend 14 days enjoying yourself on holiday. Shift the think!

8) Eat foods that are simple to prepare. Perhaps not the healthiest but a transition from ‘shit’ to ‘better’.

For example, a can of no-drain tuna, a bag of microwave rice (Uncle Ben's’ spicy Mexican rice is awesome….just saying) and a handful of pre-mixed salad will take 3 MINUTES to prepare. This has protein, veggies and carbs in a (fairly) natural way. 

In the future you can shift to fresh tuna on the grill and baked sweet potatoes. But the goal here, is to NOT get overwhelmed…

* * *

That’ll do, I could’ve kept going but lets keep this as simple as possible team!

If you want a ton of resources on WHAT to eat, HOW much to eat, how to progress your nutrition, how to tweak your food intake depending on your current weight and goals and a load more….

Well this is part of our nutrition process for ALL our clients.

What’s your goal? What do you want to achieve before the end of the year and why?!
Send me an email at and tell me what your goal is

Summer is still here! 

Let’s enjoy it

Speak soon

Lost your Way in Fitness and Diet?

So there I was, grabbing my rolls of belly fat, staring at my body in the mirror....

....upset at my lack of 'sexy bod'. AGAIN.

After perhaps the most consistent 4 month training period of my life starting March this year

I'd built incredible strength levels, added 4kg of muscle, dieted down for a holiday this summer

Then I'm seemingly back at square one!

You've been there're right?

Of course!

You'd be lying if you said you hadn't

And we all get off track from time to time

For me, constant travel was the self-destruct button

For you? Maybe work suddenly got tough

Perhaps you got injured

Or you've just not had the motivation or direction to get up and make a lasting change in your health

So right now, I hope this email helps you refocus your efforts as I show you a little of how I'm getting myself back on track...

Here we go...

There are two things to consider and improve:

1) motivation

2) nutrition


Firstly, motivation comes from anchoring your training to a purpose, not necessarily a goal

For example, 'losing 3 stone and looking leaner' is a goal

But that will not motivate you!!

Start with WHY you want this

For example, 'by losing 3 stone I can play with my kids in the park and not feel like a fat dad'

Or think about the single most focused athletes on the face of the planet...


Those girls don't want to look fat on their wedding pics and have their insecurities immortalised in photo and memory for the rest of their lives

So they train their assess off! 

Every bride I've ever trained has come into the gym like a navy SEAL, primed and ready to kill.

Makes sense right?

So what's your purpose?

What fires you up?

For me it's entering a beginners tournament in Jiu-jitsu, I don't want to compete and get hurt, or embarrassed, so training is VITAL

Once I know this, my training becomes consistent because I have a reason to hit the gym.


Secondly, after I've got a purpose linked to my training, then it's time to clean up my diet

Simple habits come into play here:

> I start my day with a simple protein smoothie (frozen cherries, whey protein, almond milk) because I was missing meals when travelling, generating huge hunger later in the day, then eating shite for lunch

> I end my day with a big portion of protein and fresh veggies (e.g. Steak, Cucumber and peppers, not boiled veggies) - this just makes me feel healthier right away, and that mental aspect is what we want to focus on when getting back on track. Also this makes waking up much easier the next day (my body is hydrated, I've had a deep sleep due to stable blood sugars)

> I stay away from bread, sugar and dairy throughout the middle of the day, and eat 1-2 other meals in this time frame.


NOTE: I will say this again, this is my method for getting back on track with clean eating and training

After a week or maybe two at this level my nutrition always shifts to tracking calories, macros (protein, fat and carbs) and weighing my food - because you can't get lean if you don't know exactly how's much you're eating. And I make tweaks every week so my body instantly looks leaner and stronger


So just know you aren't alone when you feel off track, or if you can grab a roll of fat that wasn't there before

Trigger your motivation

Clean up your diet

And you'll get in incredible shape before the year is out!

Want my help and advice?
Email me back

Want to talk about setting some goals and working together to guarantee your body changes
Take a look at our programs

Take a small step today and you'll be back on track this time next week!


Anthony Shaw

Head Coach
Raw Strength Gym, Warrington

MindsetAnthony ShawANTHONY SHAW, accountability, bootcamps in warrington, building, beginners, built, beginners training advice, body transformation, body transformations, BIRCHWOOD PARK GYM, bootcamp, built body transformation, body transformation warrington, basic training warrington, coaching, clean eating, CLEAN EATING, conditioning, change, crossfit warrington, coach, Clarity, consistent, daily routine, discipline, diet, dips, dw fitness, DIET, david lloyd warrington, education, EASY MEALS, fitness classes, fat loss, fitness, fitness trainer, FITNESS TRAINGER, fear, fat loss warrington, growth, goal, goals, gains, group training, GYM IN WARRINGTON, gyms in warrington, GYMS IN WARRINGTON, gyms near me, gym, group fitness, goal setting, health, shortcuts, improvement, workout, weakness, lifestyle, lazy but lean, LEAN GIRLS, lean girls body transformation, lean girls, lifting, Manchester, Liverpool, mental, mindset, motivation, NUTRITION, north west, nutritionist warrington, nutrition warrington, nutrition, nutritionist, orford jubilee gym, performance gym, personal trainer, personal trainer warrington, personal, PERSONAL TRAINING, private gym, program, professional, private coaching, powerlifting, preparation, private performance gym, performance training, private gym warrington, pure gym warrington, strength and conditioning warringtonwarrington bootcampwarrington body transformationanthony shaw, raw strength, routine, sports direct gym, semi private personal training, training program, team work, trainer, team spirit, team tone, training, tribe, private, warrington, warrington body transformation, warrington fat loss, warrington bootcamp
Sweat LESS, Achieve MORE

If I told you that dedicating just three hours each week to an exercise programme with get you a ripped, toned, healthy body would you believe me?

The common belief is that you HAVE to beast yourself daily to make progress, you HAVE to leave with a huge pump and covered in sweat.

Dont get me wrong, I love to leave the gym feeling a huge pump and it certainly takes a lot of hard work along with plenty of the classic blood sweat and tears to make progress, nothing comes easy.

Let's be honest any idiot with a copy of the latest men's health and a pair of trainers can turn up day after day and run themselves into the ground.

The smart man understands the importance of rest and recovery, he understands time management and not overtraining and allowing his muscles to rest he will gain more in the long run than those who continue to train when logic dictates otherwise.

I speak from experience of course, as a younger, foolish, enthusiastic (but just as ruggedly handsome) version of the man I am today I would waste countless hours in the gym, I would run the circuit of the local gym in hopes of achieving my goals, starting on the machines, then onto the free weights, then a go on the cardio machine I hated the least that day, before going for a swim.

The result?

Four weeks later all I could see was a skinnier, less muscular and knackered version of myself ... Bugger!

Without appropriate time to rest and heal we are actually setting ourselves back in the long term, we have to remember that exercise is a stress on the body and like any other form of stress, too much of it can have serious consequences on our health.

hose extra sessions can lead to long term injuries which can put you out of action far longer than the 24 hour period I'm advising you take.


To some it seems crazy to train less and achieve more but it's true.

Our clients train three times a week and really make the most of our time, each session is laid out for maximum gain over the course of the hour training session. Coupled with a proven nutritional system there isn't any need for those extra workouts, we encourage our clients to stretch and foam roll on their days off to help recover and ensure they are fighting fit and can train more intensely when the next session rolls around.

Now go enjoy your rest day, eat clean, foam roll, stretch and mentally prepare to smash your next workout.


Don’t Face That Yellow Brick Road ALONE

Our goals always seem so distant, hidden at the end of a long road littered with pitfalls and points of failure with only a sparkly new pair of red running shoes to help us on our way.

Like Dorothy we start on this path alone staring across a strange land of fitness and nutrition unsure of just how long the road will be. Will it take a few days to see the number on the scales go down? Or will it take weeks or even months before you see progress? 

Just imagine how much easier the trip would have been for Dorothy if she had a guide and some like-minded companions. When looking at the long journey ahead, it's easy to start out lost and daunted by just how much there is to do.

For most people starting on a journey towards a fitness or health goal, it is one of the most intimidating things they have done in a long time. Normally people undertake this huge journey alone, with minimal knowledge, just the advice from friends and family, things they have read in a magazine and on the internet.

And without constant feedback or a measure of your progress, doubt sets in...
"Am I doing the right thing?" 
"Is it worth all this effort?"
"When will I see results?"

You begin to realise that you need to make major changes in certain aspects of your life in order to reach your goal quickly, such as making time to exercise, changing your eating habits and giving up indulgences. It can all become too much, and many start to believe that they will fail due to the sheer magnitude of the task ahead, before they have even got going.

Much like Dorothy had the support of her companions, support is invaluable to success. When working towards your goals, an experienced coach can guide you and get you to your goal FASTER and a Tribe of like-minded individuals like yourself will keep you motivated and committed along the way.

There are THREE things that can help you to the end of that yellow brick road...

A Heart; Commercial gyms see each member as a number, a faceless member in the system, they don’t care what your goal is, or if you achieve it, they keep your direct debt running and you can skip the gym whenever you like. Here we care whether you reach the end of your yellow brick road, so we keep track of your goals along the way and work with you to ensure you hit them. We will check-in when you miss sessions, hold you accountable but also make sure that you are ok, and not overwhelmed by the task at hand.

A Brain; Every aspect of your your exercise program and nutrition system are laid out for you, we assess your goals and make sure you follow the program that is best suited to you. We make sure you never stray too far from the path with an online nutrition system personalised to you, with weekly check-ins and constant support to ensure you progress.

Courage; There is no need to be scared or overwhelmed by how much work there is to be done. We are most proud of is our positive and friendly atmosphere. Our tribe of members are all here to follow their own yellow brick road that leads to a better version of themselves. They will support you, keep you company and make the journey FUN. The social aspect of RSG is very important to us so we organise social events and charity days, where we gather in the gym for fun and relaxed training sessions and enjoy time away from the gym with a cheat meal or two.

So, don’t take one more step down that yellow brick road alone. Surround yourself with the support of a group of experts and like-minded individuals and I assure you the journey will be easier, faster and more enjoyable.

Running is NOT Good For You!

What’s up Raw Strength Fans!

Yesterday we started off a conversation on Surprising fitness truths…



Then read it here >>


Now let’s dive into the second mind bending truth…

** Running is NOT good for you! **


Yes, I know that YOU reading this right now have been running in the past

Maybe even in the past few weeks

You did it to lose weight, right?

But, if your goal is fat loss, and let’s face it for most people thats the prime concern…

Then running is actually NOT helping your goal

It may even be making things worse!


Allow me to explain…


The body wants to be lean

Believe me, it does.

Given the correct diet, exercise and environment, the body will naturally lean out

Meaning = you look good nekkid!

Yet there are a few, if not thousands, of mistakes that you can routinely make that can affect the body burning fat…


Let’s run through the main ones (this will REALLY help you to burn more fat once you get rid of these mistakes)

QUICK NOTE: ALL of these mistakes cause the body to go into a stressed ‘mode’ and in this mode the body will not burn body fat for fuel, but instead run alternative ways of getting energy such as burning muscle (Noooooo!!)…

….or making you crave sugar (so the ice cream you eat can be used as energy)

…And basically the body does this to PRESERVE body fat stores.

Also known as - The Worst Case Scenario!


Here are the mistakes that cause this scenario:

> Not sleeping enough hours (7 minimum)

> Not relaxing enough, or not at all (no quiet time, no meditation, no reading of fiction)

> No conversations with friends (to unwind and decompress the mind)

> Always thinking about work (the body gets ready for battle!)

> Not eating enough (we covered this yesterday)

> Too much cardio work like RUNNING

SO yes, running can and does put the body into a stressed state and for most people…

…Stops fat loss!


Now, I’m not going to say stop running if you love it, because of course it’s better than sitting on your arse watching re-runs of Friends on the TV

What I am saying, is that for your goals of a leaner, better looking body…

Shouldn’t we be looking to OPTIMISE fat loss?


In that case, understand that running causes a stressed state (impact on the joints, increased rate of breathing, increased heart rate, mental pain from ‘the burn’)

This stressed state stops fat burning and the body must recover from the constant, grinding impact of each step 


Compare that to lifting weights, where the movement is relatively slow, controlled and we know exactly how to stimulate each muscle for growth

And we can train the WHOLE body every workout without pounding the joints and lengthening recovery time

Whereas running only really trains the legs (and not all of the leg muscles either)

We can progress the weight week upon week and burn MORE calories every session

Whereas with running, after increasing your distance and decreasing your time…. There ain’t a lot more you can do to progress

With weight training you can change exercises, vary the same exercises, there’s literally an infinite amount of options


To sum up:

> Running is one-dimensional, no real way of progressing for years and years

> Running causes the body to enter a stressed state that takes a while for the joints to recover from

> Running is boring for most people, and is not a life long habit you will maintain

> Running DOES NOT burn fat as well as other methods


So remember, OPTIMISE your fat burning

Don’t just run because everyone else is


Final food for thought:

> If all the bodybuilders, fitness models, magazine muscle men and celebrity fitness trainers recommend that you should be lifting weights and NOT running, as I am recommending, then don’t you think it’s time you lifted weights?!

If so, then email me back and I can explain our body transformation programs in greater detail

The combination of lifting weights, intense conditioning workouts and a scientific, measurable nutrition program (and results tracking) ensures that we constantly get life-changing results for our members

Programs start from £129 per month on Team Tone [Beginner's Fitness & Fat Loss]

And just £199 per month for Lean Girls [Ladies Athletic Physique Coaching] 

….and Built [Mens Strength & Transformation Coaching] 


Email me back to discuss your goals and which program is best suited

OR fill out this application if you’d like to have a FREE consultation call to see if we can help you


You could be 1-2 stone leaner and MUCH stronger, more energetic and happier after the initial 12 week program

This is a program to improve your life, if you want this, INVEST in yourself



> Tomorrow we are going through the THIRD surprising fitness truth


If you currently have back pain, you won’t want to miss this.


Speak soon!

Anthony Shaw

Head Coach
Raw Strength Gym, Warrington