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The Numbers Game.

I’ve seen a few posts and had a few conversations lately about the trend for berating the modern training equipment and methods used by some novice and lower category cyclists. There seems to be an attitude out there – especially amongst the older more experienced or successful riders – that power meters, training zones, structured programs and even a bit of coaching are completely unnecessary for the club level rider and should be left to the elites.

As you might imagine I have a slightly different view on this. Firstly if you’re on a bike, whether fat, thin, fast, slow, all the gear or no idea – that’s fine by me. Then, if you’re taking steps to try and ride that bike a bit faster, even better!! The newer rider has a plethora of technological innovations and apps available to them to record just about every metric concerning their training but it doesn’t make their quest for speed any less important than the old skool rider who still trains the way they did 30 years ago. The actual training methods may not be that different anyway, it’s just the fact that it is now so measurable and quantifiable that seems to upset some people. But some people like numbers. Some people respond to numbers and when they see those numbers improving, it motivates and encourages them to train harder and pursue their particular goals. It’s not really any different to what Time Triallists have been doing for donkey’s years. Week after week trying to chip a few seconds off their personal bests isn’t that different to trying to add a few watts or sustain a given power for a bit longer in training. It’s all progress that equates to the need for speed.

The argument that training with power is best left to the top riders doesn’t really make any sense to me either. I train and race with some really good experienced racing lads who have never used a power meter and probably wouldn’t know what to do with it if they were given one. But they know exactly how to train based on what they have done over the years and can pace a ride precisely just using ‘feel’, a skill gained over many miles and hours in the saddle. But the newer rider doesn’t have this kind of experience and knowledge. Are they not the ones who would benefit more from having some kind of help with pacing and measuring the intensity of their training and racing? They will get a far more effective training session if they have something to help gauge their effort and get the most out of every session. For example, picture the rider setting out with the objective of a 3 hour solo tempo ride, he sets out far too hard and fades halfway through, just limping back home for the second half of the session, or even worse just bimbles around without creating any training effect. Is this effective training? Or would they be better establishing a few training zones and measuring their effort for the full duration of the ride and creating just the right amount of stress to make them a little bit fitter?

I also think there is an element of technophobia amongst the naysayers. Granted, there can be a lot of confusing abbreviations used in power training. If you don’t know your mFTP from your TSS, your CTL from your TSB then I understand it can be daunting and easier just to turn your back on it all and just carry on doing what you always did. But when you boil it all down its just numbers. A few clever algorithms in a computer program that look at how much power you’re putting through the cranks and how much time you spend doing this to tell you if you’re probably going to be fitter if you carry on doing it. Numbers. That’s all. Imagine going to the gym to do some strength training and when you walk in all the dumbbells and barbells look the same and have no numbers. You’d go through your session lifting a few different weights until it felt like you’d done a workout and your muscles were a bit fatigued, but you wouldn’t have a clue if you were stronger than last week or which weights you should lift next week in order to progress. Just because you’re getting tired doesn’t mean you’re getting better.

The other fallacy seems to be that if you use power to train, then you don’t do anything else and your cycling consists of sitting on a turbo day after day crunching numbers. This may actually be true in some cases. Some of the power forums that you can go on are so geeky that they seem to have nothing to do with riding a bike. But the riders I know who use a power meter just use it as a tool during a few specific sessions. Of my coached riders, most of them probably won’t be going to the Olympics. They still want to go faster but there must always be an element of enjoyment in the program. I’ll often just put ‘Free Ride’ on their weekly plan. This means basically turn your Garmin off and do whatever you like. Some coaches would call this junk miles, but it could be the only ride that they get on with their mates to the café that week. OK there may not be much training effect but it reminds us why we started riding and recharges the batteries for the harder sessions. You can still enjoy going on the chainy, still put the panniers on for a few days touring and still enjoy the craic of a club run and a café stop even if you use a power meter.

From a coaching point of view, training with power is so much more effective than alternative means. Prescribing intensity and seeing measurable improvement in a rider’s performance is so much clearer and accurate using watts. Heart Rate can be useful but isn’t much use when trying to describe the intensity of shorter higher intensity efforts. RPE is also subject to interpretation. But give someone numbers to hit and they know exactly what is being asked of them. Even training with power has advanced thanks to the likes of WKO4 software. So whereas in the past all training zones and intensities would be derived from a single 20 minute test, now we can build a power duration curve based on every maximal effort from a single revolution of the pedal up to several hours. The guesswork has gone. Of course it still takes knowledge and experience to build and structure an effective progressive program, but sessions can now be so individualized and specific that trial and error and wasted hours in the saddle can be all but eliminated.

Of course training without a power meter is still possible and always will be. Numbers and endless abbreviations aren’t for everyone. And as every coach knows, fitness and absolute power output are only one part of the jigsaw. A successful competitive performance needs numerous other skills and factors like tactics, team work, bike handling, position on the bike, climbing ability, riding in a bunch, descending, pacing … and the list goes on. But none of these attributes will usually win you a race if you don’t have a decent sized engine. A power meter doesn’t give you more power but it just might help you be more effective in your sessions and prevent wasted effort and inefficient training.

So whether you’re gauging your watts and trying to get a PB on your local Strava segment with your SRM cranks, deep section wheels and your Rapha jacket or you’ve got your panniers on checking your map to find the youth hostel, you’ll still get a wave from me as I’m passing in the other direction.

( If you’re interested in some coaching get in touch for a chat – benno147@blueyonder.co.uk )

AB

www.fit360.co.uk

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So that was 2016 …

watts

So 2016 draws to a close, and I’ve got another 12 months of coaching under my belt. It has (and no doubt will continue to be) a constant learning curve. The biggest challenge is realizing that everybody is different and responds to different things. There are the riders who are into the numbers and upload sessions immediately to Training Peaks while they are still getting their breath back. Then there are others who are more old school and maybe struggle with the technical side of things. But this doesn’t mean that they both can’t reach their potential with the right approach for them as long as the enthusiasm and commitment is still there.

If you thought coaching was just a case of giving out a few training sessions every week loosely based around a target, then think again. The relationship between the coach and the athlete is one of the most important factors so if you’re thinking of investing in some coaching, I would definitely recommend having a look around at what is available and meeting them first for a chat.  Speak to someone who’s been coached by them and make sure that you will be able to work together to achieve your goals.

Apart from prescribing training and motivating my athletes, my coaching year has also included – teaching how to fix a puncture quickly, checking and adjusting riding positions, helping to pack a bike into a travel box on the way to a World Champs, helping to select and enter appropriate races/events, regular testing and monitoring progress, nutrition advice for training & racing, choosing and buying equipment and even racing against some of my clients (which can get tricky!!).

So looking forward to 2017, we’ve got a great group of motivated athletes with different targets but a common goal to get fitter and go faster. I’ve got a few ideas up my sleeve on how to build on what we’ve got including new software for better power data analysis, a new Facebook group just for the 1:2:1 athletes, training days out over some classic routes and strength sessions/workshops at Globogym.

I keep the group small so that I can fit in my own training/racing/family/job/social life … But there are still a couple of slots available for 2017.

If you’re interested in getting involved have a look at the website and get in touch.

AB

www.fit360.co.uk

benno147@blueyonder.co.uk

bioracer2017

 

Is your cycling performance fully insulated?

faster-cyclist

We’ve all heard David Brailsfords ‘aggregation of marginal gains’ mantra. Making small improvements in several areas can make significant overall improvements in your performance. He didn’t however invent this way of approaching things. I once had a boss who every time he found a coin on the floor (no matter what the value) would proudly declare “Many a Mickle makes a Muckle !!” as he pocketed the money. Now I have no idea what a Mickle, or for that matter, a Muckle is, but I presume his philosophy of marginal gains was along the same lines as Brailsfords.

There are countless articles and blogs available to you on how to improve your performance with every training method under the sun. So for the sake of this blog I will assume that you have maximised your power potential and you are putting out the highest watts you possibly can. So what I want to ask you is how many of those precious watts are going through the bike to propel you forward at maximum velocity and how many are you wasting??

Imagine that you have had a brand new, state of the art central heating system fitted in your home. The most modern boiler providing instant heat to keep your house nice and toasty whilst the snow and sleet is falling outside. Now imagine that whilst the boiler is doing its job – producing plenty of lovely heat in every room – the kids have left all the windows open, the back door is slightly ajar and you never bothered fitting any of that loft or wall cavity insulation. Whilst all the other houses in the street have a layer of snow sitting on the roof, yours is clear as the escaping heat melts away anything that lands on it.

Well this is what is happening if you are producing the watts but they are getting wasted because you’ve focused on the training and ignored the marginal gains available.

  • Position. This is by far the biggest mistake that is seen by new (and some older) riders. When you are riding fast, the majority of the work you are doing is just pushing the air out of the way. Air Resistance is the biggest reason that most non-optimised riders are giving away their hard earned watts. When you look at the frontal area of yourself on your bike, then the majority of that area is you – the rider. So making yourself smaller by optimising your position without losing power is the easiest way to preserve some of your watts. We all know that by crouching down on a descent we go faster for no extra effort. By doing something similar whilst nailing it along the bypass we will go faster. But don’t mistake the ‘lowest’ position for the ‘optimal’ position. Being too low will reduce your power output, so it is a case of finding the best sustainable trade-off between power and aero advantage. It could just be a case of improving posture or hand position, but more often than not a few tweeks to the bike setup are all that are needed. If you are really serious (and seriously rich), a session in a wind tunnel would be the Gold standard of aero bike setup.
  • Clothing. Cycling kit has come a long way since I started racing 27 years ago when I was given a woolly and very baggy Magniflex jersey. These days I’m lucky enough to ride for the Onimpex-Bioracer racing team who provide us with state of the art speedwear. Most modern racing jerseys are now more aero than skinsuits were a few years ago. The speedsuit fits like a second skin as even a crease in the shoulder can increase drag and sap those watts. You may be able to reduce the drag even more by having a number pocket fitted to your skinsuit such as Nopinz. Overshoes will also help you slip through the air. In time trials, even something as small as not wearing mitts may give you a couple of watts back.
  • Helmet. Time triallists have long known that a ridiculous pointy alien looking helmet and visor will help you go faster. Although I wouldn’t recommend turning up for your local SkyRide in one, it will help you knock chunks off your PB in a Time Trial. The last couple of seasons have also seen improvements in road helmet design with less vents and wind tunnel designed shape helping to reduce drag.
  • Bike / Wheels. As with the helmets, road bikes are taking a leaf out of the Time Triallists book. Most big manufacturers now have a top of the range aero bike such as the Trek Madone, Specialized Venge and Canyon Aeroad. Hidden cables, special tear shaped tubes and handlebars all cut through the air to allow the power that you’re putting through the pedals to be converted into more speed rather than overcoming wind resistance. Deeper section wheels also finish off the package with a wide range of depths for every weather condition or course.
  • Drivetrain. Along with wind resistance, friction is another force conspiring to steal your hard gained watts. If money is no object the you could look at fitting ceramic bearings in your wheels and bottom bracket. This probably wont make a noticeable difference but remember that we’re looking for an aggregation of marginal gains, so even if it is only a couple of watts, every watt counts.  Looking after your chain and using a good lube can also add to your mounting mickles. There are even firms like shopforwatts where you can send your chain to be waxed or buy a new prewaxed chain. Another way to reduce chain friction is to keep the chain line as straight as possible meaning not to ride across the block ie 53×25 or 39×11. You’ll notice a lot of top testers have big chainrings on their Timetrial bikes – 55 tooth+. This is not just because they can push an incredibly high gear, but so they can keep the chain around the middle of the block for a nice straight friction free chain line. Oversize jockey wheels can also free up the movement of the chain and help it run more efficiently.
  • Tyres. Most old Pros will still insist on riding on tubular tyres because they ’roll better’. Rolling resistance causes the tyre to misshape as it hits bumps in the surface, so using high quality tyres and the appropriate tyre pressures will help the tyre maintain its momentum and not lose energy. Riders will use lower pressures and specially handmade bigger tyres for cobbled races such as Paris-Roubaix all the way to silk tubulars for high speed racing on the smooth wooden surface of the indoor velodrome. There have been advances in tubeless tyres with positive results so expect to see these being rolled out over the next couple of seasons
  • Weight. The final force that is working against us as we press on the pedals is gravity. Putting out impressive power numbers is all very well, but it doesn’t count for much if you are getting dropped or having to work twice as hard as everybody else every time the road goes up. Power to weight ratio is one of the most useful metrics for a coach and rider to measure and compare performance. Remember that we are assuming that you are putting out as many watts as possible, so reducing body weight will improve your performance (unless you are already into single figure body fat percentages.) This has to be done carefully though, if you try and lose too much too quickly you will lose muscle and power. You still need to fuel your performance too. Like aero position, nutrition for optimal body composition and performance is all about balance. Most of the peloton at all levels will be racing on carbon framed bikes these days. You can also reduce weight from your components but some parts will make more of a difference than others. Shaving a few grams off with a carbon saddle may make your bike look more bling, but weight saved from rotating mass such as wheels, cassette, cranks, pedals & shoes will give more of a bang for your buck.

So how is your performance potential looking now? Are you fully insulated, or have you left a few windows open?

If you need help with any aspect of improving your performance get in touch for a chat and see how we can help  –

benno147@blueyonder.co.uk

http://www.fit360.co.uk/

Are you a Rocky or a Drago

What kind of trainer are you – ‘chopping logs in the snow’ or ‘monitored efforts on a versa-climber in the lab’ ?? Well we all know what the outcome of that one was.  Click here if you’re not sure what I’m banging on about.

Obree 'turbo'

(Graeme Obree on his ‘Turbo’.)

However this isn’t a blog just about Rocky IV, it’s about Old Skool versus New Breed. Do you like your gym clean and sterile, with a bank of televisions showing pop videos? Or do you prefer the spit and sawdust of a weighlifting gym, where you’re actually allowed to sweat on the equipment and the background noise comes from the clanking of weights instead of the banal cacophony of Justin Beiber.

In the cycling world, it sometimes seems anyone who has come to the sport within the last 5 years can’t go for a ride unless the data is logged, otherwise it ‘didn’t happen’.Strava_white_Tee_8de5d7cc-138b-402f-bc7e-61b6d35bb17a_large

I know that’s a pretty sweeping statement but even if it’s true, is it such a bad thing? If Strava manages to get a recreational cyclist to challenge himself to ride faster, is that such a crime? Then we have Zwift where you don’t even have to leave the house to have a bike race ! But if it’s getting you fitter, where’s the problem?

There is also Old and New styles of coaching, with 50 shades of grey inbetween. Modern coaching involves a lot of number crunching – calculating FTP, assessing TSS and worrying about CTL. At the other end of the spectrum we have the Old Skool coach – Rocky’s Mickey. Eddie Soens would be the closest we have had to this in cycling. One of the most successful cycling coaches Britain has ever seen, developing riders such as Chris Boardman and Dave Lloyd (who also went on to a successful coaching career.) Eddie Soens is now immortalised in the eponymous early season race around Aintree motor racing circuit which attracts the best domestic races from around the country. (This year’s edition is on 12th March).

In the 90’s there was a stark contrast between the training styles and equipment of Graeme Obree and Chris Boardman. Both incredible athletes, but Chris was labelled as the scientific one and Obree more of a maverick pioneer. They both broke the world hour record and achieved time trial times that most of today’s racers could only dream of, even with the advances in training, equipment & nutrition over the last 20-30 years.

I like to think that, as a coach, I fall into one of the 50 shades somewhere in the middle. I use power meters and put a lot of emphasis on testing and measuring progress. But I also see coaching as a creative endeavour. Every client is unique with individual goals and targets and different responses to the challenges they are given. Finding what motivates and works for each individual is the challenge for the coach. The basic principles remain the same, but how a person responds can vary greatly. One of the most successful cyclists this country has ever produced – Mark Cavendish – was famously bad at Lab tests and was nearly kicked off the GB Academy due to his average numbers, but is quoted as saying “Indoor, stationary bike tests don’t take into account tactics, technical ability or a lot of other factors. It doesn’t matter what lines you put on a graph; it’s the finish line that counts.”

I’ll often talk about 5 pillars of performance when it comes to cycling – Endurance Training, Strength Training, Nutrition, Recovery and the final one – Everything Else which includes the X Factor. No, not singing ability, but the inexplicable, unquantifiable trait that is the difference between the winner and the also-ran.

So whether you’re a Rocky or a Drago, there is no right or wrong way to reach your potential, just find the path that works for you.

If you are interested in performance coaching, general training or weight loss, get in touch for a ‘No Obligation’ chat.

AB

benno147@blueyonder.co.uk

www.fit360.co.uk

The Great Athletes’ Bake Off

Hands up those of you who opened this blog hoping for a list of cakes that are good for the athletes?, you lot go and stand in the corner. This isn’t even a nutrition blog. The title just refers to an analogy I find myself using time and time again – ‘Don’t worry about the icing until you have baked the cake’. In a nutshell, don’t over complicate things until you are sure you have the basics nailed down.

When I started cycling back in the late 80’s (after watching Greg Lemond beat Laurent Fignon in the tour by 8 seconds), training advice was limited to an occasional article by Peter Keen in Cycling Weekly and advice handed down by the elders on club runs on what works for them. Coaches were just for the professionals in those days, so most of us found our way by trial and error.

Fausto Coppi when asked what it takes to become a great champion is famously quoted as saying :–

coppi2

 

 

 

These days we have a world of information in our pocket via the internet. Cyclists are a million times more informed about training than we were back in the day. With forums and social media, any and every new training and nutritional idea is shared and devoured instantly. However this can be detrimental to the self-coached athlete who is constantly looking for those ‘marginal gains’.

An effective training program can be quite repetitive by its very nature. It should address the basics and then work on them consistently and progressively to build a platform for the athlete reach their greatest potential. The problems arise when we read an article touting a new way to ‘get fit with just 3 minutes high intensity training per week’, or how your ‘performance will be transformed this season if you cut carbohydrate from your diet’. Then next week you read a different article and decide to try that way instead. When you lose sight of the basics and lose consistency, you lose progress. When a mate tells you all about a new interval session he’s been doing, there’s no point just copying the session unless it is within the context of a structured program. What following blindly will achieve is at best, inconsistent form and at worst, no form at all on race days when you want to be fully fit and fresh.

The problem with most self-coached athletes is they also tend to concentrate on the aspects of their fitness that they are already good at or enjoy. So if you hate climbing hills, it’s probably because you have a lot of room for improvement in that area. If you break into a sweat at the mere thought of endurance intervals, you probably need to do them. There’s nothing wrong with racing to your strengths but you still need to address the gaps.

So for me, what are the basics? Well assuming that you’re giving yourself enough recovery and not overtraining, then the basics are:

1, Build the biggest Aerobic engine that you can.

2, Make yourself stronger and more resilient with resistance work and corrective exercises.

3, Pay attention to your nutrition.

The Engine. I seem to use the word engine a lot, but it’s the fundamental basis for building a winning performance. Have you ever been in a break where all the other riders are obviously stronger than you? You are out of your depth. That’s usually because they are cruising along with in a 3.0 litre BMW and you are trying to match them revving the balls off your Nissan Micra. The bigger the engine, the more Oxygen you are utilising, and the faster and more efficient you will be. Just as the powerful BMW can consume much more fuel than the puny Micra, so the elite cyclist can process a lot more Oxygen than your average club rider.

Strength. Whatever your sport or activity a stronger more resilient body will make you more efficient and injury resistant. Get in the gym and do some appropriate strength work at least once a week. If you are carrying a niggle or injury, don’t ignore it. Is it caused by over use, poor alignment on the bike or weak postural muscles? Whatever is causing it, get it sorted before it gets worse.

Nutrition. Get your nutrition right for your objective. This is probably the area where there is the most conflicting advice. Good nutrition should help optimise your body composition, fuel your performance, repair damaged muscles and most of all keep you healthy. Different objectives require different nutritional strategies whether it’s to lose some weight before the season starts or putting the finishing touches to your fitness in the final block before a target race. Get this right and you’ll see results.

So get the basics sorted and be consistent via a structured, progressive training program. When that is done, then you can put the icing on the cake. (BTW There’s nothing wrong with a nice piece of cake now and again.)

AB

www.fit360.co.uk

benno147@blueyonder.co.uk

 

 

Scousers’ Guide to Bike Racing

 

IMG (Me in my first ever Time Trial)

Apologies if the title is a bit misleading. This isn’t a guide to racing like a Scouser – although legend has it, that back in the 80’s there was a local rider who would get into a break in a Road Race and then sit on the back for a free ride to the finish. When ‘asked politely’ to contribute to the pace, he would shrug and retort that he couldn’t do any work as they would stop his dole !!

The title is purely geographical.

So any one thinking of having a go at racing this year but a bit confused by all the different types of racing, federations, age groups etc? Here’s a rough guide.

There are several forms of racing available to club riders – Road racing, Circuit racing (Criteriums), Time Trialling, Track, Cyclocross, Mountain biking etc.

In a Time Trial you are riding on your own against the clock usually at minute intervals from the next rider, although there are 2-up TT’s and Team Time Trials where you share the work on the front. The most common starting point for most club riders when they dip their toe into racing is the club 10. These are informal races but are still held under Cycling Time Trials (CTT) regulations. There is no need to enter in advance, just turn up, pay a couple of quid and pin a number on. There are club 10’s held monthly on the Hale circuit  or on the faster Rainford bypass course organised by Phoenix & St Helens on Tuesday’s and Wednesday’s through the summer, and occasionally they have a 25 mile TT when the evenings are light enough.

Once you have done a few club 10’s and have caught the bug, you may want to enter an open Time Trial. These are organised by clubs all over the country at varying distances and times from 10, 25, 50 & 100 miles right through to 12 & 24 hours. You need to enter an open Time Trial at least 3-4 weeks before the event as there is no entry on the day, although some events on the faster courses get well over subscribed and the riders with the fastest times for that distance will get preference.

Once you have completed a TT, your time for that distance is your personal best (PB) and the idea is to beat that time and set a new PB. Some clubs also have medals for beating standard times and there are also club records for each distance. (Men & Women). There is also a Merseyside Best All Rounder competition for all local affiliated clubs, ranking riders according to their average speed over a variety of distances.

Courses have code numbers and when looking to enter a local race, look for courses with the prefix D (Liverpool), J (Manchester), or L (Lancashire). Club members don’t have to join CTT individually as the club is affiliated. Most TT’s are £8-£10 entry fee.

You may also want try Road Racing. This is where you race in a bunch and first one over the line wins. There are no set distances for RR’s but some are held on long undulating or hilly courses, others are on small circuits such as Pimbo, Litherland or Oulton Park. Most RR’s start as a bunch but sometimes there are handicaps where bunches have time advantages over different age groups or categories. There are also multiple day Stage races which will usually comprise of a number of races (stages) over a  variety of courses and even a Time Trial.  A RR may be organised under British Cycling (BC), The League International (TLI) or League of Veteran Racing (LVRC – over 40’s)

For BC you will need Membership and a Racing licence. You can rise through the categories from 4th to Elite as you accrue points from race results. Most BC races can be entered online and can cost between £15-£25 to enter. Local races fill up very early so if you find a race on the calendar that you want to do, get it entered as soon as possible.

TLI are a cheaper alternative. You can turn up and ‘enter on the line’ at some events but you are better off becoming a member and entering races in advance. Most races are categorised by age instead of ability or category.

LVRC is the Vets racing league. Categories begin at 40 but there are still riders in their 70’s competing. This is no easy option however as there are many ex Professionals still racing at this level.

So if you feel like you would like to have a go at racing in 2016, get your racing jersey ordered and get training!!

Any questions?? Just ask.

Here are some useful links :

If you would like coaching to help you train and get into racing, get in touch.

AB

benno147@blueyonder.co.uk

www.fit360.co.uk

P25.4

Get Better

It’s the time of year for setting goals. Whether it’s to lose 10kg or complete a 5k Park Run in under 25 minutes anything less than achievement will not do. Most coaches or teachers will tell you that your goal needs to be SMART ie:

smart-goals

It’s true that if your sport is your job, and your job is to win a Gold Medal at Rio, then failure to achieve this means you haven’t reached your goal.

But what does it mean for the rest of us if we don’t reach your goal? Does this means that you’ve failed? I would say not, as long as there is improvement. Did you get better? If so I would call that improvement. As long as there is some aspect that is quantifiable & you can measure progress, then moving in the right direction is not failure.

Think of your goals as points to work towards, but with improvement as the objective. If your current 10 mile Time Trial PB is 23:30 and your goal this year is 22:00, then achieving 22:30 is a hell of an improvement, continue improving at the same rate and you’ll be doing 21’s next season. If you set a goal of 10kgs weight loss in 6 months, would 8kgs be a fail ??

The Japanese have a word – Kaizen, which roughly translates as continuous improvement or development. This makes goals merely milestones along the journey, not the destination.

Scroobius Pip puts it much better than me in this video from Crossfit Liverpool here

If you need help and support  in ‘getting better’ in 2016, get in touch.

 

www.fit360.co.uk

benno147@blueyonder.co.uk

A Goal is just a Dream without a Plan

New Year Resolutions.

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Here we go, 2016 is going to be the year. The year you ‘up your game’. That’s what you’ve told yourself, right? You’ve set yourself a goal – a target weight, maybe a dress or suit that you’re going to get back into. If you’re really determined you might even have an idea about how you’re going to go about it. Join a gym, cut out the biscuits, or probably do exactly the same as you did last year when you set yourself exactly the same goal.

I don’t mean to be disparaging, and maybe you are one of the few who achieved the goals they set for themselves last year. But the truth is that the vast majority of New Year Resolutions don’t last more than a few weeks. That is when the will power wanes and a return the default setting usually occurs. Any change that requires will power is doomed to fail. Think of will power as holding a weight above your head. You may be able to hold it there for a time but as the shoulder muscles fatigue, you eventually have to let the weight drop. This is the same as using will power to stick to an unrealistic change in diet and activity levels.

It’s true that some changes to lifestyle are necessary to effect a physical change in body composition and/or fitness, but these must be sustainable and seen as positive changes. If you feel like you are depriving yourself or perceive exercise as a chore, then you will be in the same position as you are now in 12 months’ time.

It may just sound like a matter of semantics, but if you see your changes in a positive light then you have a much higher chance of making these changes for life. So instead of thinking of staying on track by using will power, think of it as self-control. When the voice in your head is trying to persuade you to make poor choices or skip a planned session, just take control and remember the reasons for making better choices. The more often you overrule the voice, the weaker it will be and the easier self-control will become.

When you aren’t feeling particularly motivated, this doesn’t mean it has to be the crashing end of all your good intentions. It just means you’re having an off day. What you need to do is make a commitment. This means you have made bond with yourself to continue forwards towards your goal, even when motivation is low. It will always come back as long as, deep down, you are committed. There is a difference between motivation and commitment. Keep your eyes on the prize, and remember that even when your goal is achieved, a new one should be set. This is a continuous journey.

Finally, if you’re not sure – get help!! I wouldn’t dream of attempting to rewire my house or service my car.  A proven factor in successful weight loss is accountability, you are much more likely to make good choices if you have someone to report to at the end of the week. fit360 weight-loss coaching is more than just a weekly weigh in and a quick check of the food diary. I believe in educating clients so, even if you haven’t got the first clue about nutrition or exercise to begin with, by the time you reach your goal, you will understand the reasons behind making the choices that you need to make so that these behaviours will stay with you for life.

A weight loss coach should not be interested in return clients, only referrals. Your success is my marketing, and hopefully once your body composition goals are reached, you may continue with us as a sports or performance client.

If you’re interested in coaching and support for reaching your goal in 2016, get in touch.

AB

Details on www.fit360.co.uk – Weight Loss

benno147@blueyonder.co.uk

Welcome to fit360

Logo med

Welcome to the new fit360 site. I’ve changed it from the old site to this new wordpress site, partly because I had feedback that it was difficult to read and just a bit ‘all over the place’. Hopefully this one is a lot simpler and easier to find the information that you are looking for. You can also view the new site on mobile & tablet. Also this one will enable me to write a few blog posts on whatever comes into my head. If you’re not already a member of my ‘fit360 Coaching’ facebook group, get on it and you can make your own contributions or ask a question.

The blogs will be on anything and everything, not just cycling, but as that is my sport a lot of it will be endurance sport based. I will keep you updated on the progress of the 360 Athletes as they work towards their goals, whether that is sport based, strength & fitness based or weight loss.

This year I have worked with some great people including –

  • Coaching a female Triathlete to improve her cycling for the European Triathlon Championships in Geneva,
  • Coaching a Duathlete Age Grouper who was competing for Great Britain in the World Duathlon Championships in Adelaide,
  • Coaching several club cyclists to improve for Road racing, Time Trialling and major sportive targets.
  • Numerous bike position set ups
  • Weight Loss clients including 2 who have lost over 23 kgs between them.

It’s been a great year for me developing my coaching skills and many people have passed through Globo gym, some for just a single session.

If you’re interested in getting help with your goals for 2016, get in touch

AB

http://www.fit360.co.uk

benno147@blueyonder.co.uk

 

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