We are now half way through this series of 12 days of Christmas dieting. The way I see it there is a lot of spurious information out there that is usually confusing, contradictory or just plain wrong. I've been educating clients for years on how to eat and train properly. Here is another dose of reliable information on how to avoid getting fat at Christmas time.
It is often said that it takes 10,000 hours to become an expert in anything and in the last month I completed my 11,000th session as a personal trainer! It's been a hell of a journey but one that has taught me far more than I would have imagined when I delivered my first (very average) session straight out of university.
If we can encourage less active people to become more active we could prevent one in ten cases of stroke and heart disease in the UK, and one in six deaths from any cause. Furthermore, regular physical activity can help to prevent and manage over 20 chronic conditions and diseases, many of which are on the rise and affecting people at an earlier age.
It's not too late for you to build a pair of sexy summertime legs! And yes it's mainly because, although late June, it doesn't seem that British summer has started yet. But whilst we patiently wait let's all do something useful and get to work shaping up our bodies ready to bare all on those upcoming 2.5 days of hot sun!
This is really about those who want to exercise and aren't confident enough to step foot in the gym or just plain don't like the large rooms packed with people heaving and sweating. This is not a problem; there are lots of workouts that you can do in the comfort of your own home, where the only heavy breathing you'll hear is your own.
In truth, personal training can be a bit hit or miss. The industry needs more thorough regulation, and, in my opinion, it needs to demand more of those who work within it, in terms of continued professional development, in order to bring the overall standard up to point where we can genuinely class ourselves as a professional service.
Some will have us believe that we need nothing more than bodyweight exercises, others will insist that we should do higher reps with lighter weights while others are convinced that if the weight isn't super-heavy we are not providing the body with enough of a challenge. But who should we listen to and what is the best rep scheme to use if we want to get into shape?
Core training is a concept that is often misunderstood. You regularly hear people discussing 'the best ways to get a 6-pack', or giving advice like 'make sure you use a Swiss ball' or 'add weight to your sit-ups.' Invariably this sort of training is labelled core stability training, but I would argue that the stability element is often forgotten.