Be the BEST you can be at your current AGE and current Circumstances!!

The end of the summer is coming.


Like every summer for the last few years all you were concerned about was looking good for your holidays.


You let how you look dictate how you feel but maybe it is twofold. Perhaps how you feel is reflected in how you look?


As always you focussed on the goal instead of the process but the goal looked big and scary.

The goal looked like too much hard work.


Believe me I get it, I am 33 now, I do not have the great metabolism I had in my 20’s. The snacks and treats start to add up now, hangovers are no longer a pain in the head the morning after, they are now days of sluggishness, the bags under the eyes do not go away as quickly and there is a realisation now that exercise and training need to be focussed on living a long healthy life rather than looking the part in a tight top.


Who do you want to become for your spouse, your family, your friends?


Do you want to give off vibrancy and energy or lethargy and desperation?


Why I am writing this? I got married earlier this year. I literally got in as good of shape as I have ever being in. Ok it was a landmark event but the thinking from a training and nutrition point of view was based on a one-off…..and as a lot of you will know what happens when you achieve a short term goal?


There seems to be nowhere to go next. I put on over a stone on the honeymoon and 4 months later I am still hanging on to half that stone.


I was working with Setanta College in Thurles this weekend and I am literally wrecked.


Reading back on the words I have written so far it sounds like I am in a bad place?


Absolutely NOT. Just a realisation that you need to get yourself in the best place you can be at your current age, in your current circumstances and not always be chasing the body you had in your youth. The reason I am so tired is not from being in a bad place, it is from training hard and working hard all week and my mind and body is displaying what is natural.


We are invincible in our youth, we are capable of greatness our whole lives. We can still be energiser bunnies but now that requires great discipline, a lot of consistency and a sound mind.


Every now and again I think it is important to reflect on yourself and your thoughts and beliefs and call your own BS from time to time. The BS I have had in my life is always my attraction to food and my refusal to track it. My belief that I could train hard, train regularly, eat well and throw treats in on top of it in the mindset that this was a balanced life is starting to come up short now. The Bodycoach is wrong. Calories do matter. It does not matter if the food is good for you, if you eat enough of it the calories still add up. If the calories add up to more than you burn you will put on a pouch in time.


In the past I have dismissed tracking calories, well at least in the long term. Yet I have always advocated Awareness in your life. Awareness of how you think, what goes on in your mind, what you portray to others and an awareness of what is important in your life. Yet I was making the mistake of not being aware of my food intake? I will forgive it as youthful invincibility mistake but to live in greatness long term it is something I will need more awareness of.


True beauty is portrayed in energy, positivity, vibrancy and a smile on your face. Focus on the process, the process is living well, training consistently even if that is not as often as you want, think long term and eat well but being aware that you can have fun with your food if you keep an eye on how much is going in versus what is going out.


The summer is coming to a close, it won’t be long ‘til the little black dress ads are out and will you fall into the same trap of bouncing in and out of that? There is no rush, life is there to be lived, live a long one, live a happy one.

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Run to Get Fit OR Get Fit to Run!!!

I am on the fence when it comes to long distance running!


Currently I am unable to fully make my mind up on long slow distance running.


Both anecdotally and scientifically show pros and cons.


So I am going to look at my experiences first.


When I was a teenager I loved running and would almost daily be seen running around Lucan.


Fitness wise I was unbelievably fit


Headspace wise it was great for shutting off from school and studies etc and just enjoying testing myself, enjoying my own company and just the fresh air and health benefits getting away from it all can bring.


However I ended up with extreme back pain, neck pain and hamstring strains.


This cannot be taken in isolation and blame running alone.


We as a society spend too long sitting and in poor posture while I also started lifting weights and I know I was doing these wrong too.


My pain and injuries lead me down the academic route of studying the root of my problems.


I loved sport, loved exercise but it brought me great pain and pain brought anger.


Most Academics cite the correlation between running and injury while a few talk about how the human race was designed to run…….but how modern lifestyles have changed this.


Other academics talk about the huge benefit psychologically that long distance running brings when people enjoy it and get to switch off from the other stresses their day to day lives bring.


The key word here being stress!


Many forget that exercise is a form of stress and that you need to manage the stress load brought on from exercise when added to the stress of day to day lives, work, business and relationships.


So while High Intensity Running can be more efficient at getting you fitter in a shorter period of time, can your body tolerate doing that a few times per week?


It is the same with gym training, should you or can you tolerate high stress loads in the gym a few times per week?


At ABC we are constantly studying, always wanting to be better and we understand that you probably feel the same when it comes to exercise and training. Always wanting to feel like you trained ‘balls to the wall’ ‘emptying the tank’ ‘no pain no gain’ and so on.

It is human nature to always want to see progress and see it fast.


This why in our training programmes we place a lot of significance on how we train the Central Nervous System (CNS).


We aim to have high CNS days, Medium CNS and Low CNS days. To you and our clients these all look and feel like hard work, they all can make you sweat and raise temperature and heart rate BUT placing different priorities on your central nervous system reduces the risk of injury but also gets you the benefits of High Intensity Training and some Aerobic Training.


Both our Strength work and our Conditioning (fitness work) reflect this and we feel this is the best approach to your running too.


Runners should be doing gym work, it should not be intimidating, it should not be considered for meat heads and bodybuilders but as something that improves your performance, reduces your risk of injury and aids how you look and feel in terms of muscle tone and body composition. Just like gym junkies should not be slating those who pound the streets running daily.


So rather than condemn running, I believe things can be done better and that gym and running, walking, cycling or whatever your activity can be done in conjunction with one another. The gym will help you get stronger, move better, look better, burn fat more efficiently but cardio is good for head space and reducing stress levels (depending on how it is programmed).


Strength and Conditioning is a must for everyone and for that there is no argument. (well again depending on the quality and expertise of your coaches). While you must get fit to run not run to get fit, most people learn this the hard way!!

Does Your Fat Loss Goals Dictate You and Define You?

Fat Loss IS Important! We have our Highest ever rate of Overweight and Obesity in this Country and Yet there is more Fat Loss products and more Fat Loss gyms and services than ever before!


This is something I passionately believe in – I am well and truly sick of how fat loss consumes people BUT it is not your fault – it is everywhere.


In ABC we want you to think differently!


We want you to think about improving your Performance, meaning your thoughts revolve around getting fitter and getting stronger.


In order to improve your performance you start to eat to fuel that performance!


When you train in a Performance Based Training Gym like ours, you soon realise it’s $h1t or get off the Pot!


Personally there is no worse feeling than that feeling of being out of shape!


You feel like crap, literally! So what do you immediately do?


Well when your Fitness levels are measured, when your strength levels are measured and your goals are based on improving the performance of these key targets and you want to get rid of that feeling of feeling like crap, you soon realise if you are not improving thatyou need to work on a couple of key things like your Nutrition and your Recovery!


You soon replace the apple tart with an apple, you replace the bottle of coke with a green tea, you get to bed 30 to 60 minutes earlier because you want to recover and you will need and want the sleep if you are training hard.


So what happens as a result of all this?


Take Sarah one of our members, her score on the rower over 4 minutes has improved by over 200 metres, she had got much fitter, stronger, more energetic


And she has lost over a kilo a month every month since January, she has got slimmer and looks seriously fit and athletic!


Not once did we set weight loss targets with her, WHY, because we have banned weight loss targets from the gym.


On our goal setting board you must write a performance or a habit based target.


Some write down “Make minimum 13 sessions this month” which is very specific and measurable, others write “Achieve My First Chin Up” again very specific and measureable.


Improving day to day habits and lifestyle become what you think about, that feeling of crap becomes a distant memory as you are becoming fitter, stronger, healthier and happier.


Morally I disagree with pushing weight loss! Particularly when I see it among people who are already relatively slim. Ok you may not be 100% happy when you look in the mirror in the privacy of your own home but if weight loss is all you talk about, all you think about and when you are happy you have achieved your target, where do you go from here. You are going to a weight loss gym and your trainer keeps pushing weight loss targets, you can’t lose weight forever and it sickens me how much I see this pushed because of the idealism of being skinny!


If wanting to constantly have your legs, arms and waist measured is what you are after we are probably not for you! (It is something we do for people who want it every now and then but it is not a driving factor). What happens if your measurements are not changing? What then? Does that make you unhappy? Does that make you dismiss the fact that you are fitter and stronger, that you are more energetic and have more energy!


Base your outcomes on Performance, you will feel proud of yourself, and look better in your jeans.




PS: We now offer habit based Nutrition Coaching as an option included in the price of your training or for those who cannot make the gym, Nutrition Coaching can be done for only €50 per month or €500 for the year (both are a 12 Month Course)