Getting Over A Fitness Plateau

1.  Exercise Less or More

When it comes fitness progression is key.  Many times exercising less can be the answer because intensity can be increased and recovery can be improved.  On the other hand, an increase in volume can help improve as well.  If you have been training for a long time without a week or two off take a break.  If you have been working out two times a week up it to three.  It really depends on the person and a qualified professional can help you improve on this.

2.  Train for a goal  

I am not sure if I have ever trained for a weight goal.  Instead I have trained for a specific strength, power, or speed goal.  I have also trained to be able to advance in specific body weight exercises.  The point here is focus your energy on getting to a specific result.  A word of caution here.  I do believe that goals can be conflicting.  For example, becoming really strong and becoming better at marathons are opposed.  That is not to say that a runner should not get stronger but the programming should be inline with the specific goal.

3.  Manage Stress and Sleep More

Our bodies need sleep and many times.  Most people say we need 7-9 hours of sleep.  When it comes to stress we all have it.  It is not the stress but rather the reaction to the stressful situation.  Things like prayer, meditation, focused relaxation, quite time, and much more can help break that plateau.

4.  Change nutrition

The obvious things are reducing bad carbs, sugar, alcohol, trans fat, and so on.  On the other hand, little things like maybe eating more or less could help depending on the person.  Eating more good fats or other nutrition tweaks may just improve performance.

5.  Get some support

This can come in so many forms from professional support to the support of a friend.  It could mean a training partner or a small group personal training class.

6.  Get some recovery

Massage, foam rolling, chiropractic care, band stretching, walking, yoga, vacation, hot cold showers, and many more are all examples of ways to recover.  Remember results happen after the workout.  Working hard is important but so is working smart and consistent.  Recovery techniques are crucial and might be what you need to bust through a plateau.

7.  Supplementation 

Finding supplementation for your goals is important.  It is not the first thing to look at however I believe it is the easiest way to see some results.  Try some supplements for performance and use those.  Figure out what you like and what your goals are then you can add those into your overall plan.  However some people focus on supplementation but do not look at nutrition or any other factors.

What have you done to break a plateau?  Comment below!

American Ninja Warrior Training

I am training for American Ninja Warrior.

Here are some things that I believe need to be a focus when training for this type of competition.

1.  Really focusing on grip strength.

Many of the successful warriors have great grip strength especially per pound of body weight.  I was really impressed with the football player who made it through because his weight was much greater than the other competitors (I digress).  The truth is that grip strength has to be incredible to do well in this competition.

Here are some examples of exercises I am using.

– Two finger pullups

– Two finger KB carries

– Weighted pull ups

2.  Must be explosive in the lower body.

The reasoning is because of the jumps that are needed throughout the competition.  Fortunately my many years of training for lower body jump height has potentially prepared me for this.  My main goal is to maintain strength and explosiveness in the lower body.

Here are some examples

– Single leg squats

– Deadlifts

– Different jump and sled work

 

3.  Advanced body weight training

In the past I wrote about different exercises for body weight.  I feel that strength per pound of body weight also known as relative strength is key.  None of the warriors have a high percentage of body fat and many do freestyle tricking or are rock climbers.  Without doing these specific things I will need to focus on other ways to be strong.

Here are some examples

– L-sit

– Planche

– Explosive dips

Here is some of the training I have done in the past

 

Comment What You Think… Is anything missing?

5 Advanced Bodyweight Movements

Below are five advanced bodyweight movements that can be used for better fitness and or athleticism.

These should be done in a progressive manner and should not be practiced if someone is not ready for them.

For example if a person is unable to do a full body squat with both legs the progression is obviously NOT a single leg squat.

1.  Single leg squat from the ground up

2.  Crow Stand holds with vest

3.  Two finger pull ups

4.  L sit variations

5.  Any explosive power movement such as tuck jumps, plyo push ups, broad jumps, and so on.

What is your favorite body weight exercise?

Comment below!

Subtle Yet Crucial Performance and Fat Loss Concepts

When it comes to performance and weight loss the focus is usually on quick but temporary changes.
Below are five subtle yet crucial performance and long term fat loss techniques.

1.  Monitor workout recovery and intensity

This is so important for long term performance and fat loss.  I am constantly asked “What should I do on my off days?” or “What workouts can I do on my own?”  Many times people will look at me bewillered when I say nothing or I tell them to do some walking.

You see our bodies need recovery and rest to perform optimally.  Now I am not suggesting that every day should be a rest day or that you should not get after it, but rather pay attention to your performance and how you are feeling.   I would much rather increase intensity over a long period time versus exercise often at the same or lower intensities.  Less can be more if done with appropriate training!

2.  Eat to perform well with no more dieting

Today we are looking at thousands of different diets including all sort of crazy fad diets.  Some are crazy, stupid, and others are just downright lethal.  If you do not believe me read these http://www.everydayhealth.com/diet-and-nutrition-pictures/crazy-diet-fads.aspx#/slide-13  Cigarette Diet, Baby Food Diet, HCG, and the Twinkie Diet just to name a few.  A wise man once told me “show me someone who is dieting and I will show you someone that struggles with weight.”

3.  Manage Stress and Sleep

This one goes along with number one but it deserves a spot of its own.  When a person lacks sleep and is unable to deal with stress hormones become out of whack.  When hormones become out of whack weight loss becomes more challenging or even impossible.   This article explains it very well http://www.theiflife.com/fat-loss-101-master-the-basics/.  People always tell me their hormones are out of whack because of age.  I think instead that hormones become out of whack largely because of  lifestyle.

4.  Foam roll and band stretching

At this point you might think I am  stretching it a little bit.  Well the truth is when someone is consistent with these two things recovery speeds up, performance goes up, and risk of injury goes down.  These are all things that are needed for long term performance and fat loss.  http://www.3fatchicks.com/the-benefits-of-a-myofascial-release-massage/ talks more about the benefits of myofascial release.

5.  Focus on strength per pound of body weight

I have never seen someone who is overweight that can do amazing body weight feats of strength.  I am also not saying that a person should not focus on absolute strength because they should.  I am saying over a period of time a person should get stronger in bodyweight movements and keep advancing in these.  If I go from zero pull ups or assisted pull ups to being able to do five trust me when I tell you your body will look different.  The benefits of bodyweight training are many and not the purpose of this blog post but again a person should be getting stronger per lb of bodyweight to see long term fat loss results!

Please share your thoughts below do you agree, disagree, or have any ideas of your own!

2012 Fitness Predictions

1.  Many people will pay less for gyms but many will still not go to the gym.  However they will still pay for it!

2.  Many gyms will compete on price versus value essentially ruining their ability to compete.

3.  People will still look for the easy way out.  It is human nature to do so and in most areas of life being lazy can help us. The airplane, the car, the internet, email, social media, and any other device that makes our life easier is a good thing.  But when it comes to fitness, basically the rule of thumb is this…. the better you get the better your body looks!

4.  Metabolic training is going to be the words describing short intense workouts that will increase the metabolism over the long haul.

5.  Fitness Professionals are going to train regular people more like beginner athletes or advanced athletes.  There will be a focus on recovery and lifestyle techniques for better fitness results.

6.  Infomercials will sell like always:(

7.  Diets will pop up and people will say they work but will put weight back on.  Hopefully this will lead to an understanding of the difference between weight loss and fat loss.

8.   Fitness Revolution, Prograde, Bands, Meal Movement, and other helpful tools will grow like crazy.  Because these are the programs and tools that really do work in the long run!

9.   Express Fitness Powered by Fitness Revolution will be Waukesha Counties secret society for long term lifestyle fitness changes not just a quick fix (shameless plug)!

10.  More people will want 10-30 minute workouts that improve them versus the long boring cardio people do with no success.


Do you agree or disagree? Comment below your thoughts!

Problems or Opportunities

When it comes to life everyone has problems and how we deal with these problems determines the quality of our lives. So many people wish for less problems versus looking at them as opportunities.

What does this have to do with fitness? Well as soon as something goes wrong we stop with our fitness goals, or we wait for the perfect time to get in shape. For example, I hear this one all the time “I am going to get in better shape before I start training.” Wrong answer!!! The right answer would be “because I have gotten out of shape (the problem), I need to start with a fitness professional (opportunity to get in the best shape of your life).”

Overcome your obstacles and wish for more answers. Learn from problems and turn them into opportunities. I believe the more challenging a person’s problems the greater their success in life.

To creating opportunities,

Jeremy

The Fitness Broken Heart

Fitness Professionals around the United States want to change people.

The issue is some never change. It breaks my heart when others do not see results, but it is amazing when people do change.

When people change their thinking and move into action people do flourish.

It is especially amazing when a person makes permanent lifestyle changes, loses weight, and becomes a happier, healthier person.

Chose to change your life today through health and fitness, you will never regret it.

To your happiness,

Jeremy

An Impressive Fitness Mom

Today as I was driving back from my boot camp when I saw one of my old campers running outside. That is what fitness is all about.

She is dedicated to working out early in the morning. She is a mother and has a full time career, but she still makes time for exercise. I was smiling ear to ear because I am in this business for you to see results and make a commitment to lifestyle changes!

In this world action equates to rewards and when your in doubt about what action to take… Here is a secret just take action!

To all the fitness moms,

Jeremy

CAN BOOT CAMPS BE DANGEROUS?

Fitness Boot Camps are growing at a rapid pace in the fitness industry. They have so many great attributes such as low investment and high return on results. They provide expert leadership with a social aspect but at the same time are great workouts.

On the other hand, boot camps can have a downside. Many fitness instructors want to start and run a boot camp without having the necessary skills to do so. Here are 10 tips to a safe and effective boot camp:

The Top 10 Boot Camp Safety Checklist

1.) The Instructor(s) Must Be Certified With Nationally Recognized Institution. If the person only has to pay for a certification you might want to stay clear. This can be an issue of safety.

2.) The Instructor must know what it takes to be in good shape and in some cases they might be out of shape. The best fitness professionals have the knowledge but also follow through with actions. Most people want to take advice from people who are in great shape.

3.) The instructor must make the exercises appropriate for all levels. The more fit you are the more advanced the exercises should be. The less fit you are the less advanced the exercises should be. There is always a modification and the instructor should know of plenty. If they cannot you should leave the class.

4.) The Instructor should be available for questions before and after class. This is important to determining the individuals’ needs and wants. Focus on a professional that cares about you and the group combined.

5.) The program should emphasize body weight exercise with a progression to weight training exercises. There should be a great focus on form first and foremost. Exercises need to be mastered before an instructor increases intensity levels. A red flag should be raised if you are being instructed to add weight to a movement that you have yet to master with your body weight alone. This will lead to injury!

6.) The training system must focus on interval training body weight exercise and cardiovascular intervals as well. High-Intensity Interval Training is scientifically proven to burn 9x more fat than the aerobic training alternative, so it is critical that both the resistance training AND cardio programs provided incorporate intervals since the goal for most people is fat loss. Most people want an athletic lean look and this is accomplished through circuit training of varying intensity levels. The best fitness professionals can create workouts with little to no resistance except the body.

7.) The program must have a sound nutritional plan. The instructor should be adamant about you following this nutritional plan but it should not be a fad diet. The plan should focus on healthy nutrition not some dieting tricks. It should provide both nutrition guides for Males and Females.

8.) The program should have a website along with an interactive community for everyone to be a part of. Bottom line, if the boot camp program in question does not have a website in this day in age it is not worth your time and money. There are fitness professionals that do not treat this as a business but it is. You want support from others what better way then having a community that is all in this together. There are so many free communities out there today so the instructor should have an online social community.

9.) The program should have testimonials of all sorts. Their previous clients should have results and be raving about all of the benefits that they have received from the program. Ask for before and after pictures and written or video testimonials of their services before signing up. And remember, it’s NOT just about the weight loss. Benefits should include, but not be limited to, increased energy levels, dress/pant size reduction, improved health profiles, increased strength and flexibility, less joint pain, etc.

10.) There should be a free trial of some sort. Many of the most successful camps do this. Why? Because they are confident in what they offer and the benefits it will have for you!

Jeremy

PS sign up for a free week trial boot camp by clicking below
www.jeremybelter.com/fatblastingbootcamp.html