Sunday, 2 November 2014

Fitness made simple for dads

I've just read a load of supposedly helpful posts about fitness, which don't half get confusing when you try to put all the advice together.

So I thought it might be useful to put into a simple blog post the simple rules by which I try to stay fit when looking for guidance or inspiration in the gym or elsewhere.

My simple fitness rules:

1. Set yourself a challenge - one that's hard but also fun - and recruit one or more pals to the same challenge

2. Train to meet the challenge over 3,4.. 6 minutes months.

3. Don't worry about what you normally do for fitness - if you're working towards a good challenge you'll have to change your regime anyway.

4. Eat to meet the challenge - with the right balance of carbs / fats / proteins, and at least one blowout day per week.

5. Moderate your caffeine, sugar, alcohol - except for special occasions.

This is the way to keep moving forward, not hate your fitness routine, have a life, and achieve some impressive goals - collecting stories along the way.

Examples of my recent challenges:

2011 - Complete a sprint Triathlon
2012 - Fight in local inter-club Muay Thai event
2013 - Man vs Mountain 23 mile race over Snowdon
2014 - Get stronger (at 40) than I was at 25 = 105kg bench press & power clean
2015 - Complete "Tough Guy" extreme obstacle race

In 2011 I could swim 2 miles in a session and run a 21 minute 5K.

In 2012 I hit 84kg and had fantastic cardio for fighting 3 rounds of 2 minutes, full contact.

In 2013 I was 85kg and running up to 40 miles per week at a comfortable 8 mins per mile.

In 2014 I hit the gym three times a week, religiously following a targeted strength program, and crept over 92kg.

In 2015 I will need to get used to ice-cold swimming, conquer my claustrophobia and overcome my fear of electrocution. Can't wait!

You'll find yourself in different shapes and sizes depending on the challenges you choose, and this is more empowering than the constant pressure that we're under to look like a "Men's Health" cover model. Doing what it takes to meet the challenges, overcoming your set backs and having a load of fun with friends along the way is just the best way to keep in good shape and stay healthy.

Muay Thai: round 3
Man vs Mountain: Man won!
Triathlon: Uh oh! I still have bike & run to do!

An added bonus is that motivating impact that it has on your children. They see you setting goals, training for them, and achieving them. If a little of that rubs off on them, then you'll have set them up for a rich and rewarding life!

So find a challenge, recruit some pals, and GO FOR IT!!!

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