Posts in Success
Why you aren't very strong

Reason #1 - You don't know what you're doing

For those of you who are new to lifting, or just outright weak, you may be halfway through an excruciating set of deadlifts and wonder…is there an easier way?

> Shall I try Romanian deadlifts next week instead?

> How many reps/days/kilograms/sets?

The list of questions is endless! But maybe you shouldn’t be asking the questions in the first place. You see, when you are first starting out in training (in fact it could be anything, a new job, new hobby etc.) you NEED someone to tell you what to do. This is important because you don’t know what you are doing! So why are you acting like you do? I think it’s because when it comes to our own body, we all believe that we are the expert….we could be wrong.


To further illustrate my point, let’s imagine that you can cook a little. You can whip up a nice Bolognese for the family, but that’s about it. Now would you go into the kitchen of a big restaurant and take over head chef duties? Would you feel comfortable doing so? Probably not…


Then why do people who have never lifted before write their own programs?! The easiest way to get bigger and stronger is to get someone who knows what they are doing to write you a program.


Reason #2 - You're not consistent


There’s nothing worse than the program hopper, the person who jumps from program to program without fully investing the time and effort necessary to make physical improvements. These people are usually the biggest moaners too, believing that most methods don’t work because they’ve tried everything!


It takes some trial and error to determine what exercises and loads work best for you. So a bit of program hopping is necessary, but you should take into account the following points.


It takes a minimum of 8 weeks of training with the same program for most long lasting increases in physical performance. This is 2 months of solid training. Whilst you will make immediate gains from any decent program (more reps than last week, more weight than last week etc.), these are almost completely neural gains.


The body will try to improve performance in the most efficient way possible, so if you want to add some muscle size, your body will adapt to make the nervous system better at your chosen exercises before it gives in and adds some muscle.


What works really well for you may not work as well for everyone else and vice versa. So beware taking the advice of someone who is raving about a particular training program, it may not work as well for you!


So when choosing and evaluating a training program, use this 3 step process to get the most out of every method you try:


1) Train on the program for a minimum of 8 weeks without changing anything


2) Keep the exercises that you got stronger on and drop the rest


3) Replace the dropped movements with similar but different exercises


Keep track of everything and use the above points every time you feel that a change is in order. Remember; it’s better to change one thing at a time with an existing program than to throw everything out and start again! If you have any more questions about this concept, just drop me an email and I’ll help you out!


Reason #3 – Training to Failure


When training for strength, training to failure is stupid. Lift a heavy weight for many repetitions and your muscles will get tired and motor control will deteriorate. If you continue until failure, your motor control will become so bad that the risk of injury increases significantly. Why risk it?


Training to failure on squats, deadlifts and bench press is a bad idea IF you are training for strength. 


Strength is a skill, practice your strength and stay fresh whilst lifting a heavy weight. Learn to stop the set when you reach ‘technical failure’. As soon as your technique worsens from your normal, solid groove and turns into a shaky, wobbly, camel-backed rep, you need to stop the set…for the sake of your strength gains as much as for your spine health.


So there you have it. Be consistent and train smart, and you'll get to where you want to be much quicker than rushing around and training like an idiot, although the second way 'feels' like you're progressing more, you're really just wasting your time. 


Practice your strength, help your body recover and you will get STRONG!


Rise above




Head Coach

Raw Strength Gym, Warrington


PS - 


Need motivation, help and a big challenge to reach your strength goals? One piece of advice: Start powerlifting correctly.


Beginners who haphazardly start powerlifting often end up hating what is a very rewarding, inclusive sport.


We have 5 places left this month for our brand new 12 Week STRONG Program.


Truthfully, this is all our best stuff from the past 9 years put into one fast-track Strength Training program. Start the right way with 12 weeks of intensive coaching at a very low price (less than 7 quid a session!)


But consultations can only be booked TODAY or tomorrow, these places will go FAST! 


You will train in a NWPL affiliated gym with experienced powerlifting coaches...


️ Here's what's included ️


> 4 Powerlifting Sessions per week with your Coach so you develop your technique safely and see rapid strength gains


> Customised training plan written specifically for you with your body type, weak points and goals in mind - we also give you a body scan and advise on nutrition


> Accountability and support whilst training as part of a small private team with other novice powerlifters


We aim to help you eat better, feel motivated and LOVE powerlifting with a great sense of belonging with our Barbell Club.


Go ahead and enroll now:


Or reply and we'll send you an information pack.


Get information, tips and practical advice SPECIFICALLY ABOUT STRENGTH TRAINING by clicking the button below and joining the list. We'll send it straight to your inbox regularly.


1 TIP to stop wasting time

Here is an interesting concept that I picked up after reading Tim Ferris’s book ‘The Four Hour Work Week’

Tim held himself and others he consulted in business accountable for their success by frequently asking at set times throughout the day:

‘Am I being as effective as possible with my time, or am I just inventing things to do to avoid the important?’


With this simple sentence Ferris discovered that productivity increased so much that he and his clients could do more work in 2-3 hours than most people with typical 9-5 jobs can produce IN A WEEK! This is because natural human behaviour is shifted towards procrastination, the infamous art of being busy without being effective.

Have you ever wondered why when you need to go to the gym, or do sprints, or do your final piece of a project your brain magically finds other things to do? 

It’s like YOU think, “well I really need to finish writing my report or I’ll be in trouble.”

But your BRAIN thinks, “yes but have you seen those videos of cucumbers scaring cats?!”

You then find yourself on youtube. Not writing that report.

This is exactly the same as your training. You know what you need to do to achieve your goals, you do! Want to bench 100kg? Want to deadlift 200kg? Then next time you’re in the gym ask yourself the following question;

“Am I being effective? Or doing useless stuff?”

So the next time you find yourself ‘running the rack’ doing the classic 20 mins of rower/cycle/treadmill, keep yourself on track by asking the above question.

Make sure all of your training has a purpose and is progressive towards your goals and you will soon achieve more in the next 6 months than most people do in 2 years.

Rise Above


Anthony Shaw

Head Coach
Raw Strength Gym, Warrington

PS - if you want help, you can start a 6 week trial on our RISE program.

You get teamwork, support, advice and a solid direction for your life so that you can feel good, look better and live a life of purpose.

Click here to find out more:

Here's why you keep skipping the gym...

Week after week you may find yourself renewing the vow to finally 'hit the gym', yet that day never comes.

Rather than waste time repeating the same unproductive behaviour, do this:


They say showing up is half the battle.

I'd argue it's more important than that.

But the problem for most people is that they don't have time to train. Work long hours. Are too busy. Family comes first. Stuck in traffic. And on and on.

What do you notice about all these reasons?

That's right, they're all horse shit.

Excuses exist so you can forgive yourself for NOT doing what you said you'd do.

Ruffled your feathers? Good. I'd rather not upset anyone, but digging into your own excuses and seeing them for what they are (i.e. a coping mechanism for failure) is a vital part of this process.

Knowing you're making excuses is step one.

Next, it's time to pattern the correct behaviour in a ZERO PRESSURE environment.

So you might pack your gym bag, put it by the door, but not intend on going to the gym.

Do that every day for a week. Get good at it. Become world class at preparing to go train.

Weird tip yes, but this is about opening your mind to a new behaviour.

'Prepping' for a workout is step two.

Now we must find the time to train.

The most effective (read: brutally painful) way of creating more free time requires you to track just how unproductive you are at the moment.

Grab a sheet of paper, or make a sreadsheet, and track your time in 30 min blocks for a full 7 days.

Start at 5am and go right through to 9pm.

Yes, 5am. Even if you're sleeping at that time, track that as your activity. Because people do train at 5am, and that could be the only time you have to train.

Time tracker example:

5am - sleep

0530 - sleep

0600 - wake-up

0630 - get ready for work

0700 - commute

0730 - commute

0800 - work

blah blah blah

1630 - finish work/commute

1700 - commute

1730 - get home

1800 - watch TV

1830 - mess about on phone

1900 - take kids to football

1930 - watch kids football

2000 - watch kids football

2030 - get home

2100 - watch TV

^^ Do that for your own life ^^

Be honest!

Next, and the final step, rejig your schedule to leave a 45-90 min block of time free to train 3-5x per week. Include time to get to a gym (if that's your plan), or note that you'll be training at home or running on the road. Be generous with the time surrounding the workout, for example, include time to shower if you train in the mornings.

Obviously, the next step is to go and train, but because getting to the gym is MOST of the battle won, first let's summarise this method.


1. Be aware of your excuses. They are simply coping mechanisms for failure

2. Get your gym kit ready every day. Practice good preparation.

3. Track how you spend your time in great detail.

4. Reschedule your time (it is YOUR life, remember) so you have time to train

5. Show up!

Interestingly, most people go from never training, straight to attempting to show up.

But what happens?

The schedule creaks, cracks and compromises.

Excuses sweet talk you into quitting as you drive home.

Not being prepared and procrastinating wastes potential workout time.

Then you quit.

Instead, take baby steps towards training becoming a regular part of your life.

Put yourself first, and ask for support from those around you.

Soon you'll drop the excuses, see that you've failed to stay healthy...

...and DO something about it.

Rise Above


Anthony Shaw

Head Coach

Raw Strength Gym, Warrington

Don’t plan - just start

as you go into this new week you may feel blocked

Perhaps you started a new diet and you fell off already

Or maybe you joined a new gym and haven't been for 2+ weeks


It's disgustingly easy to justify the failing. Your failing.

Here are some classic excuses:

Why did you fail on your diet?

"I was at a wedding!"

"I was travelling with work!"

"My husband bought us a takeaway!"

"I was eating out with friends!"

Scientifically, of course, we know these statements are BS!

But we all make them, so don't feel ashamed.

Just BE AWARE that you're making them.

How about when you miss your workout?

"I finished work late!"

"I slept through my alarm!"

"I'm really sore from the last workout!"

"My friend made me to go to the pub!"

...right....more bullcrap.

So how do we fix this?

Well, at RSG we do two things:

#1 - we hold our members accountable

In various ways we help reflect how an individuals habits have helped or hindered their progress.

This could be jumping on the body scan machine and seeing if body fat is going up or down

It could be our challenge app which gives points for daily tasks such as hitting a personalised calorie target, or getting 7 hrs sleep (undersleeping increases appetite thus making snacking more likely)

We track attendance and give helpful nudges to do better.

There are quite a few more ways we encourage consistency in our members but these are the most powerful.


#2 - we educate and educate and educate some more!

If you knew what happened to your blood sugar when you ate an entire box of chocolates, you probably would do it less often.

If you knew how to order a healthy meal in a restaurant that STILL tastes amazing, you couldn't be dragged off a diet by friends and social occasions.

So we run seminars, give out PDF homeworks, answer questions online in our facebook group and generally make sure our members know tons about nutrition.

They go off track, of course they do, they are human after all (as are the coaching staff!)

But knowing the damage those 'cheat meals' cause to the body is vital to changing habits and becoming healthy long term.

If we let them remain oblivious, do you think they'd change their lifestyle?

* * *

Anyway, here's a few things you can do this week:

1) write down your goals, and notice your behaviour. Think, "is this decision taking me further away from, or closer to, my end goal?"

2) expect that MOST OF THE TIME you will be in a low emotional state. So don't plan to do 11 days of meal prep and live like a robot, get some healthy ready meals in, lots of nice protein snacks and some easy-to-cook family meals. So when you can't be arsed, you still get to eat healthy (vs binge on a takeaway)

3) remember that any plan is better than no plan. So go run 3 miles, do 15 mins of press-ups and squats, go and walk up a big hill. DO SOMETHING! You don't need a plan you need to get started.

Have a brilliant week

Rise Above


Anthony Shaw

Head Coach

Raw Strength Gym, Warrington

PS - want our help to get started?

Get more info on our 6 week introductory program here: 

Advice from JP

Guess what I’ve just realised?! 


I read a lot but just realised that I never talk about what I read! So today I’d like to share a book I truly love, because I think it could help you. 


I have been listening and re-listening to “12 rules for life” which is a brilliant book by a clinical psychologist and professor of psychology. 


Dr Jordan Peterson, the author of this book, gives deep and well thought out advice rooted in history, criticism of various political ideologies, philosophy and biblical stories….and obviously a bit of psychological science too. This is advice to help live life just a little bit better. 


The book focuses on practical ways to give your life meaning. How to push through tough times. How to stop drifting towards your own personal hell and towards a life that is not necessarily heaven, but measurably better than the situation you are currently in. 


Basically, it’s how to act now so your future improves. 


I’d recommend this book if you currently feel a bit lost in life, or keep trying to improve your habits but never follow through. 


Unlike most self-help books - and I have read many of the classics, so I feel somewhat qualified to say this - my life has noticeably improved from reading this book.


Plus, here is a cool list of life tips I found online by Jordan Peterson that sums up a lot of his ideas - if any of this vibes with you, go and get the book and educate yourself on your behaviour 😃


Jordan B Peterson On Work Ethic


Show up on time.

Aim for promotion on the basis of your productivity and utility.

Be generous with sharing credit.

Make sure your goals at work line up with your goals in life.

Don’t be afraid to be your own advocate.

Listen carefully and tell the truth.

Eat a protein and fat rich breakfast every day.

Don’t sacrifice medium and long-term progress to expediency.

Get up early.

Do a couple of unpleasant but necessary tasks every day.

Read as much as you can.

Take your vacations.

Do the things you say you will do.

Take your coworkers to lunch.

Don’t sacrifice yourself to the point of resentment.

Learn to say „no“ when it is necessary.

Work hard on expanding and maintaining your social networks.

Put yourself in a position of strength before you negotiate.

Do not participate in office gossip.

Delegate enough to develop your juniors.

Learn to speak publicly.

Write clearly, carefully and concisely.

Buy clothes that are slightly better than you can afford.

Learn that responsibility and opportunity are synonymous.

Have an updated CV on hand at all times.

If you have to switch companies to advance your career, don’t be stopped by fear.

Fire people who demotivate others.

Let your juniors know when they do something particularly well.

Take some time off when your opportunities start to feel like obligations.

Have a home life.

Learn the difference between real work and pseudo-work.

Protect your time.

Surround yourself with straightforward, productive people.

Ask a question if you don’t know something.

Object to stupid new rules.



Hope this helps!


Go find the book, it’s deep - and could start you on a new path in life. 


Rise above




Anthony Shaw


Head Coach

Raw Strength Gym, Warrington


PS - We are currently running 6 week trials, for free.


My team and I can help get you started on a coached program, within a group of people just like you (similar age and fitness level), in our private gym with no egos or meatheads. Just focused training, simple nutrition, and tracked results. 


Book a consultation with me using this link:


We’ll spend 30 mins going through your motivation/pain, your vision for the future, and see how our programs can improve your life.


2 must haves for health, strength and clarity...

Today I'm aiming to describe what I believe are the TWO ‘must-haves’ when it comes to a fitness program. Meaning that without these bases covered, you’ll find it easy to quit. Self-deception will be rife each day. You’ll go weeks without training then suddenly feel guilty. 


Sound familiar?


Let’s jump in:




If your workout is scheduled with your coach or training partner at 6pm on a Thursday, you will stop whatever you’re doing at that time and go to the gym to start training. Compare that to a ‘wishy-washy’ scheduling method of “ooh, I’ll try to go to the gym 3x this week."


What’s worse than not going to the gym? Staying at work for 1-2 extra hours and getting home even more stressed, even less motivated. You won’t be present for your family in that state of mind. Your family deserves you to be at your best. Somewhat counterintuitively then: Finishing work on time and going to the gym when you are supposed to be there actually gives you MORE time with your family. More time to chill out. Better work:life balance. You will feel proud of yourself. That leads to a few other improvements in your life as I’m sure you can imagine. 


Get your schedule sorted. Get some accountability with a coach or training partner that expects you to be where you said you’d be. 


This is a game changer. But it’s quite simple, right?




Ever tried a diet that when you look back, seems silly? I have. The warrior diet (2 meals a day. Starving hungry). Keto diet (very difficult to do when travelling without taking ten buckets of double cream with you). Corned beef and tuna diet (dry!). 


Now, these are not necessarily silly diets. In many cases they are scientifically verified to work well for fat loss (apart from the corned beef/tuna thing…).


But they were silly FOR ME.


If you try to stick to a diet that does not work in a practical sense within your day to day life. It will not stick longer than 2 weeks. You’re smarter than you think. You’ll see the futility of your efforts and the short term nature of the nutrition plan, then quit. To be honest I think that’s fair enough. Don’t beat yourself up about it. You’ve proven that method did not work. Now go and find a plan that does work.


Ignore plans that work for other people, they have different time commitments, fitness levels, taste buds, body fat percentage, ability to cook and on and on. There are a ridiculous amount of variables. Don’t go there. 


So, onto the real question, how do you find a plan that will make you healthier? And how will you know that you will stick to it?


Again, we must look back to the schedule - the ‘to-do’ list. What are you going to eat today? How big will the portion be? What time are you going to eat it?


Slowly, over a period of MONTHS (not days) start to reduce your portion sizes. 


You can then eat whatever you like, providing you put it into the plan and are conscious of your behaviour. You already know that lettuce is healthier than pizza, I’m not here to insult your intelligence, but I am here to remind you that tracking your calories (how much you are eating) is the defining factor of success when it comes to a healthy diet (measured by fat loss and muscle gain).


If you try to stick to an impractical diet, you won’t find it practical! You WILL eat too much. If you eat too much you won’t lose weight. 


Stop thinking of diet ‘plans’ because that leads to failure, confusion and quitting. Start to be critical. Rip plans apart. Put them back together again in a way that suits you. Think: “will that work for me?” Decide: "That won’t work when I travel to London once a fortnight etc. so I won’t waste my time trying it.” Come up with solutions: “Instead of me having 3 meals and 2 snacks like that plan says, could I combine the snacks and just have 4 meals - two before 1pm, two after 1pm? Hmm, yes that may work. Let’s try it for a week and see.”


Structure & a practical diet. 


That’s how you’re going to go for a long term healthy lifestyle.


Ignore these principles and you’ll really struggle. Perhaps you already are.


Hope this helps!


Rise above




Anthony Shaw


Head Coach

Raw Strength Gym, Warrington


PS - We are currently running 6 week trials, for free.


My team and I can help get you started on a coached program, within a group of people just like you (similar age and fitness level), in our private gym with no egos or meatheads. Just focused training, simple nutrition, and tracked results. 


Book a consultation with me using this link:


We’ll spend 30 mins going through your motivation/pain, your vision for the future, and see how our programs can improve your life.



Best of the week RSG


What’s up Raw Strength fans - hope you’re having a great week!


This is a weekly round up of this week’s articles and IDEAS for you to start living a better life


Remember - we are running a free 6 week trial of our flagship RISE program. 


EMAIL me if you’re interested and I will send a PDF of all the relevant info:






"The Essential Traits of Fit People"




— Sleep 7 hours per night


— Think positive thoughts - catch yourself when thoughts go negative and turn them around


— Be active every day - minimum 20 mins walk






"a huge mindset mistake when trying to get leaner”




— When you have a purpose, a mission, a reason WHY you are training/dieting - it drives you like crazy


— Find your purpose: What’s your mission? What regret would you hate to have on your deathbed?


— Training and being healthier is a means to an end, NOT the sole reason to do it. Find your why.






"Weight loss is a funny thing”




— Controlling your overeating habits is the FIRST thing to focus on if you want to lose fat


— Green tea or soup before meals to fill you up


— Keep cheapo noodles on hand for a snack - add protein - for easy whole meals


— Sleep 7 hours per night to reduce cravings, improve mood. 


— Eat lots of veggies to keep you full


— Buy food that lets you NOT cook so it’s easier to eat at home than get a takeaway


— Eat sugar free jelly rather than ice cream and cake for sweet cravings






“99 percenters”




— A good team will help you stick to a program. Going it alone ends in failure.


— Check your work colleagues & friends - you’re the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with


— most people (the 99 percenters) do not think of success. Your pursuit of success makes them feel bad. They’ll hold you back whether they mean to or not


— Put some money down, some skin in the game, commit to your goals. Motivation comes after you commit





That’s the best of the week guys


Remember - join our FREE Facebook group for daily motivation and advice:


Email me back to get an info pack explaining the FREE trial of our program

Have an awesome weekend


Rise Above




Anthony Shaw


Head Coach

Raw Strength Gym, Warrington

An easy fitness plan

Fitness has got a bad reputation:


> overly complex advice


> differing opinions


> extremely boring and strict methods


Which leads people to flat out give up.


In my opinion, giving up is never a good option.


Especially when we’re talking about giving up on your own health, strength and really, your sanity! 


So is there such thing as an easy fitness plan?


The short answer is YES


The catch is - you have to LIVE it 24/7 to really get the benefits.


Here’s what I mean:


You start a new diet, let’s say low carb.


Week 1-2 go really well, you lose some pounds.


Then a minor cheat… the end of week 2, on a sunny Friday evening, your friend asks you out for tea.


You go crazy, eating pasta, pizza, bread and two bottles of wine!!!


What a lovely cheat meal.


The next day, you miss a few meals, go out for lunch and have a small beer.


Then Sunday, a big roast dinner and more red wine.


Monday rolls around, you’re completely off plan and start making the excuses…..


“low carb is just too restrictive”


“I want to have a life, not count carbs”


“low carb just didn’t work for me”


This is what I call “blah-blah-bollocks”.


Quite frankly these are excuses.


What is the REAL reason you fell off the low carb wonder-plan?


No Plan B.


Quite simply, when you don’t have a plan B, the plan B is your old, crappy eating habits.


So you’ll either be on the plan, or off the plan.


And THIS is why fitness has such a bad reputation.


It is a MASSIVE MISTAKE to think you're either doing it, or you’re not doing it! 


Don’t try and “do” fitness for a little bit.


Make your plan B the support plan for plan A.


Make plan C and D the same too.


Get rid of your old, bad eating habits FOREVER - and you will live the life you want, with the body you want. 




> CALORIES - don’t do a diet - instead find a calorie target for your goal (ask a coach or work it out online)


> WILLPOWER - find 10000000000 ways to hit your calorie target whilst eating the foods you want (“meet you for tea? Of course. I’ll just skip the bread and have one small glass of wine thanks”)


> LET GO - truly let go of your old life, once and for all. You know where those habits are getting you, and it ain’t pretty.


Now go live a life that supports the body you want and MAKE IT EASY TO DO.


Rise above




Anthony Shaw

Head Coach

Raw Strength Gym, Warrington


PS - 

Want some motivation, help and a big challenge to kickstart your fitness?

We have 10 places left this month for our best ever 6 week transformation challenge, and it is absolutely free.

Truthfully, this is all our best stuff from the past 8 years put into one fast-track program.

 But consultations can only be booked TODAY or tomorrow, these places will go FAST! 

Here’s what you get:

> Up to 5 sessions per week, coached - in our awesome private gym.

> Train with other people with similar goals and have fun in the gym (possibly for the first time ever)

> Begin implementing proven nutritional methods into your day-to-day life with our simple homework modules

> Ask questions and get motivated with your coach on hand online and in the gym for support

> We’ll customise your program with more strength training, conditioning or muscle building work - depending on your personal goals.

> Train in a place where everyone knows your name, cares about your progress and notices if you don’t show up!


The goal is to notice rapid improvements in your strength & fitness

 See radical and visible changes in the mirror 

And feel on FIRE mentally.


Apply here:

Jay's Tips: 5 Things NOT To Do Before Training

When we look at fitness and training at RSG we always try to first look at the science behind any fact that is thrown our way. The problem with doing that nowadays is that everything can be very easily ‘backed up’ by science and sometimes looking at the “facts” just adds to the confusion.

The main issue is that anybody and everybody can voice their opinion and due to the digital world, we live in, we can all see it.

You should eat this but wait…don’t eat it. No, you can eat it but only now whilst you stand on your head with your fingers in your ears.

There’s too much conflicting information out there about what you can and can’t do when it comes to getting in shape. Raw Strength’s goal is to filter out the BS thrown around by the fitness industry and to silence out all the noise so you only hear what is absolutely necessary.

One way to do this is to give you 5 things you definitely shouldn’t be doing before you embark on a training session. Enjoy!

Eating Right Before Training

This one is simple, eating right before a hardcore workout isn’t going to end well for anyone.
How close is too close? This can really depend on how your body has been built; some can literally eat just minutes before training and there are others who need a good couple of hours to allow ‘settling’…to be on the safe side, the general rule is at least 60 minutes. So why is eating right before a session a no go?

Scoffing your face before a training session (particularly carbs) can make you feel sluggish –this doesn’t bode well for an awesome, productive workout. To digest your food properly, you need your blood to be going to the digestive system in order to help break down the food. Once we start training, the blood will head straight towards your muscles, leaving that food you just ate sat right in your gut and of course, not being digested.


Eat Carbohydrates

If fat loss is your goal, eating carbs before training is not the essential that you may have been told. Feeding to fuel your workouts is an individual thing, just like all aspects of nutrition. The idea that you “need” carbs for energy is outdated and just plain wrong. Carbohydrates (as glycogen stored in the muscles) do fuel a large part of our workouts but they are not obligatory pre-training as they tend to blunt the optimal fat burning effect by raising insulin levels.

Does this mean that carbs and fat loss don’t go together? No, it isn’t that simple, but it does mean that carbs pre-workout are usually an unwise decision if fat loss is your goal.


Drink Alcohol

You may laugh at this one but in all seriousness, you will be surprised at how often this happens, especially during the summer. It should be common knowledge that training under the influence of alcohol is a big mistake for many reasons, the most important being due to the higher risk of injury.

Being under the influence numbs our senses, making us much more vulnerable to hurting ourselves or worse…someone else. Alcohol is also a toxin to the body, so as soon as you start to train with alcohol in your system, your blood will start moving around your body, simply helping the alcohol get to other areas of the body quicker.


Static Stretch

To stretch or not stretch? That is the question that seems to be a controversial one in the fitness industry. The answer all depends on the type of stretching. Static stretching before a heavy session has actually been proven to decrease performance and tends to stretch your muscles much further than you actually need them to be stretched.

To prepare your body for a physically demanding training session, dynamic stretching such as hip grinders, lunges and squats has much more of a positive influence on power and muscle strength than traditional touching of your toes. Couple that with some dynamic effort or plyometric work such as jump squats and ploy push ups which will wake up and excite your central nervous system and you will be fired up and lifting more.

Too Much Sleep

If you’re looking to have a training session worth doing, watch out for having too much sleep. Too much resting can cause problems when working out, especially if you wake up feeling groggy and in a rather ‘relaxed’ state of mind.

If you are training in the early morning, ensure your mind and body are ready for it as not only will you not be hugely productive but you also run the risk of injury if you’re half asleep whilst hitting heavy squats and deadlifts. If you really have to hit the ground running as soon as you wake, spend a little time getting warmed up before you get into the heavy stuff.

So there you have it! Go train hard :)

Win the DAY

Everyone has an end goal when they start their personal fitness journey. Whether this be to lose body fat, build muscle, lift a certain weight or run a marathon, it is important to have these goals as they provide us with a vision of what we want to achieve over a long period of time. 

However, we often get caught up in focusing on this goal and it seems like it is so far away that we will never achieve it. That is then where we fall off the wagon either with our diet or a training as our motivation dips.

We’ve all had that moment where we tell ourselves “it doesn’t matter if you go off track with your nutrition today”, or “you’re not feeling it today, missing one gym session won’t make a difference”. But what happens then is that one day where you fall off becomes two, which then becomes “I’ll start again Monday”.

How many times have we said that to ourselves week after week? 

One thing you can do to avoid this is attack each day and focus on winning that day. Whether that be getting off your ass and going to the gym, lifting more weight, doing one more rep, sticking to your meal plan. If you can do this day after day, the end goal that you set when you started out will take care of itself.

At the gym, we have our Pledge Wall. Take a look next time you’re in and see what you wrote up there when you first joined.

For some of you, you may have achieved these goals already. If this is the case take some time and think of a new long-term goal that you would like to achieve over time. Others may still have some work to do to achieve their original goal. 

Once you have written down that long-term goal, whether it be on a wall or on a vision board or in a journal, now let’s look at the short-term.

Write down three things that you are going to commit to daily and weekly.

For example;

  • I am going to stick to my meal plan and hit my calorie target for today.
  • I am going to attend all my gym sessions this week.
  • I am going to stretch for 15 mins every evening.  

Once you have these short-term goals stick them somewhere you are going to see them every day to reset your focus on attacking that day. If you can do this and win each day you will achieve that long-term goal before you know it!

Now go win the day!