Category Archives for "Exercise & Training"

The “Compound” Approach

The first question to ask yourself is, does the body work as a bunch of individual systems working coincidentally at the same time? Or does it consist of a continuous bunch of interconnected systems that feed off each other?  It is definitely the second option of the two.  Why do I bring this up?  This helps us understand how small changes can team up to create major ones.  

My favorite example of this is Tom Brady, its just such a great example to use.  I know I know, none of us are NFL players and Tom’s jawline rivals even mine!  The way I am using this is the obsessive level that he takes care of his body.  Could we all be like Tom if we had millions of dollars and our own team of cooks, shoppers, and nutritionists? Maybe I suppose, but those are just parts to the overall puzzle.  When you break it down what has Tom really done to become the first quarterback to start in the league over the age of 40?  Forget about the ability to read the defense and all that, I just mean on simply a health and fitness level.  Here are the secrets…ready for this? He puts NOTHING in his body that has been show to cause inflammation, he hydrates, and he exercises…BOOM!

This is the part that’s important to consider, is it one specific part of his diet that leads to 100% of his health?  No of course not, each little step builds on the others.  For example, is the fact that he doesn’t eat nightshades alone going to lead to incredible performance? Not its not, but you combine that with no sugar, no dairy, perfect hydration, and what do you get? Amazing health.  That’s why its important to look at health as a full picture made up of a lot of parts.  If you take a multivitamin is it going to help you? Yes some, but will it help you to the same degree as if you take a multi, fish oil, and eat supportively? No it won’t.  This is the reason why many of us have been told “take vitamin B for energy”, and then we take it and feel not different.  While its true vitamin B helps with energy production, it isn’t effective if you aren’t eating the foods to support it.  Remember the body works in unison, to give yourself the best chance at a fully healthy life find things that work together to get you there.

-Coach Adam

Recovery Week is Approaching..

Next Scheduled Recovery Week: December 25, 2017 - December 29, 2017

On Monday January 1, 2018 we will ring in the New Year with our annual New Years at Noon event in Concord! We will resume regular schedule Tuesday January 2, 2018!

Congratulations! You successfully made it through the LONGEST training phase of the year. Your body needs a rest!

It bears repeating - recovery weeks are not haphazard or just vacation times for your coaches. They are a purposefully planned part of the training cycle, and critical for long term development and injury prevention.

You may have noticed that as we get closer to recovery week the daily and weekly training intensity has increased.

That is purposeful.

Because we are working toward a week of MacroRecovery, we are intentionally working at a higher level.

Then we will take a scheduled, purposeful rest.​

Because whether you think so or not, you cannot and should not train really hard, all the time.

In fact one of our training program design principles is what is referred to as MED.

Minimum Effective Dose.

In other words, what is the MINIMUM stimulus we need to get better - stronger, leaner, better conditioned, etc.?

What? The minimum you say? That is NOT my style. Go hard or go home!

That WILL work, at least for a short time. Until your training overwhelms your ability to recover, and you start breaking down.

How can you tell that is happening? That you're not recovering fast enough from your training? Here's a few warning signs:

Altered Heart Rate and Blood Pressure

You are having a hard time getting your heart rate up, or it's beating like a racehorse when you feel like you aren't really doing much.​

Poor Sleep Patterns

​An increasing pattern of the inability to sleep restfully.

Decreased Performance

Your training loads have stagnated or even decreased.​

Mood Swings

Mr. Crank-Pants, anyone?

Eating Habits Disrupted or Compromised

It's not just a matter of will power. Overreaching and overtraining can cause physical cravings if our bodies are missing crucial nutrients because of too much physiological or psychological stress.​

Decreased Immunity

If you are getting sick frequently (eg. more than one cold a year) your immune system is probably compromised.​

Increase In Injury

This could be not recovering from the normal microtrauma caused by training, for example you are sore for 2 or 3 days after training, or you are getting strains, sprains, aches and pains that you normally do not.​

Lack of Progress (Plateau)

This could be either in body composition (not losing bodyfat/gaining muscle) or not making gains in the gym.​

Enter Recovery Weeks

Recovery weeks are designed to give you rest; physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually.

You see stress is not just a "mental" thing. Do you realize when you train you are stressing yourself out, on purpose? That gets added on top of all the other stress in your life, whether it be work, home, or the jerk who cut you off in traffic. Your central nervous system doesn't care, it just knows when you have too much of it, and it doesn't like it!

​And while you can't stop the knucklehead from driving like an idiot, there are things you can do to avoid excess systemic stress, and taking recovery weeks is one of them.

Here's My Top 5 Things To Do On Recovery Week

  1. Catch up on my reading
  2. Get some extra sleep
  3. Spend more time with my family
  4. Eat at a more leisurely pace
  5. Figure out more things to torture you with. (Just seeing if you are paying attention)

​What about you?

You see you don't have to "not move" for a week. There is nothing wrong with getting outdoors, taking a walk, hitting the rock climbing gym, spending some time on the foam roller and stretching, getting a massage, and/or taking some long showers or baths.

Those things will aid your recovery and help you relax; running 2 or 3 or 5 miles every day (or every other day), or going to spin class, will not

I train hard, but more importantly I train and recover appropriately. 

I am in it for the long game. When I am sick, or excessively tired, or injured I cannot train.

THAT is what sets me back.

Recovery is what drives me forward. On a daily, weekly, and quarterly basis.

​You ready to get better with me?

MAKE IT HAPPEN!

PS. Below is the "Science Stuff" I promised - Enjoy!


All About Recovery Weeks

Our recovery weeks are what I would call Macro-Recovery. In other words we take a planned week off every training phase in order to let the body rest up from hard training and get ready for the next phase.

But did you know you can do even better than that? We have a number of athletes in the Get Fit NH family who participate in our Bioforce HRV monitoring program, which measures your systemic stress load on a daily basis, which allows us to fine-tune the recovery process on a daily, weekly and monthly basis. You can catch up on that by clicking here

Read on why properly planned and adequate recovery is important for you!

The Recovery Curve

I saw the recovery curve for the first time during my time with Australian physical preparation coach Ian King. His principles laid the foundation for the way we program, train and especially recover here at Get Fit NH. The principles that work with professional athletes apply to us too!

The following illustrates a “good” recovery curve:

The green line represents what we are all looking for – continual, never ending progress over time. We are getting stronger, faster, thinner, better looking (ok at least that’s what I wish for).

Reality Check – ain’t gonna happen. The process of changing your body is not linear, in fact what we are looking at in an optimal training environment is more of a “One step back brings me Two steps forward”.

A closer look at the chart will help explain what I mean.

The red line represents Equilibrium. This is where your body wants to stay, no matter if your goal is losing fat, gaining lean, or both. As you have no doubt found out, forcing your body to change is hard work – really hard work. When you walk into Get Fit NH, our training is designed to elicit that change. But it’s not as simple as “working out” day after day after day. In fact as I am about to illustrate, training without proper recovery is actually hurting you, not making you better.

The blue line represents the “recovery curve”. Starting at the left hand of the chart all the lines intersect. For this illustration that point is where your first training occurred – you “worked out”.

But what’s going on?

Instead of performance going up, that line is actually heading down – this is what is called Depletion. If you think about it makes sense – you have worked hard, you are fatigued, your body is depleted of nutrients – you are spent!

Don’t worry, your body will get over it, if you treat it right! This is what we call Adaptation. Your body wants to be able to handle the increased demand that was placed on it, and starts the process of getting better.

You are in charge of if and how fast that happens. A few of the factors that influence this adaptation include recovery nutrition, stress levels, sleep habits, supportive nutrition, age, and training history.

The recovery curve continues with Supercompensation. Here is how Coach King describes this process:

“It is only when recovery is allowed that we see the super-compensation effect, the unique phenomenon where the bodies physical capacity is elevated in response to training, in anticipation of another exposure to the same stimulus.” – King, I, 1999/2000, Foundations of Physical Preparation

In other words your body has gotten better in response to your training, a new Equilibrium is established and this state is when we will ideally train again. Our programming at Get Fit NH is carefully designed to give this the best chance of occurring, but as I hope you are discovering, you have a lot to do with this with how you treat your recovery!

As you can see, when things are clicking, this process when repeated over and over means you are getting better and better, the blue line is headed up – pretty cool!

The flip side to all this is what happens when the recovery process isn’t working so well.

This chart represents recovery gone “bad”:

When we continue to train in a state of “Depletion”, regardless of the reason, the adaptation to super-compensation effect doesn’t occur, and instead of getting better, we find ourselves in a downward cycle. This can happen when we train the same muscle groups too soon, when we haven’t taken the steps described above to recover optimally (sleep and nutrition for instance) regardless of time between training, when we train too hard coming off an illness, etc. The last thing we want to happen is new equilibrium to be established in a downward pattern – not good.

The long and short of it is your body absolutely needs to recover from hard training. Consistently training in a fatigued state results in injury and illness. Your body is an amazing machine designed to put up with a lot, but it was also designed to need rest.

Which leads us to:

Recovery Weeks!

Face it – you can get beat up anywhere. Our responsibility at Get Fit NH is to help you get better!

That includes recovery weeks. We have found that somewhere between 8 and 12 weeks of training is just about right to take a full week off and let your body recover.

That doesn’t mean that you spend your training time on the couch eating bon-bons, but if you insist on going down to PF and hitting the weights or running 10 miles every morning, your body will suffer in the long run, and perhaps even in the short term.

If you find yourself fighting this concept, ask yourself this – Is your unwillingness to take a week off a well reasoned decision based on what you know to be true, or is it that your attachment to training is so strong emotionally that makes it so hard? You will not lose all you have gained by taking the week off, I assure you! Again to quote Coach King, “…if you don’t (take time off)…most of you are going to lose it anyway!”

So now that we have established you are ready, willing and able to embrace recovery week, what do you do?

Glad you asked!

Three Steps for Successful Recovery

1.) Physical Rest and Regeneration

– Our bodies must rest and recover to prevent over-training (or under-recovering) issues so that we can come back 100% healthy and energized for the next phase of the program

– Focus on maintaining and/or increasing flexibility and tissue health by stretching and foam rolling daily. 15-30 minutes is fantastic!

– Daily restorative walks are beneficial during this week. 30-60 minutes briskly walking (not jogging/running) will keep your body refreshed and active, without negating the purpose of this week. Don’t overdo it!

2.) Physiological and Psychological Rest and Regeneration

– We must normalize key anabolic hormones, refill muscle glycogen, increase caloric intake, and prevent any diet induced catabolism (losses of lean body mass) so that we can enjoy greater fat loss for the next phase of the program

– We have taken the road less traveled by being flexible eaters with a long-term approach to success and thus we will take a break from our aggressive fat loss nutrition plans. This is not a free for all, so stay away from your “trigger foods” (junk foods and sweets) that open the door to excessive calorie intake.

– Instead plan (key word) and enjoy 2 or 3 controlled free meals to reward yourself for all of your hard work, but do not overdo it!

– Caveat: If your nutrition habits have been less than optimal, more than likely none of this applies to you. Instead now is the time to plan and prepare to make the changes necessary to see the results you want. Spend some time with a coach and your Jumpstart Nutrition Guide if you need help.

3.) Celebrate the Fruits of Your Labor

– Take some time to reflect on how far you have come since you joined Get Fit NH in terms of improving your overall health, body composition, and performance

– Enjoy your results!

THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!

We would just like to take the time to thank you from the bottom of our hearts for all of your hard work and dedication to improving your health and fitness… keep Making It Happen!

​Coach Dean

P.S. If you are serious about maximizing your training/recovery cycle, you owe it to yourself to invest in this! Look further into our Bioforce HRV monitoring program, which measures your systemic stress load on a daily basis, which allows us to fine-tune the recovery process on a daily, weekly and monthly basis. You can catch up on that by clicking here.

Get Back Ups – They Can Save Your Life!

Not too long ago we did a new warm up in the gym. It was a series of getting up and down off of the floor. I think it is really important to remind you and dive deeper into the “why” behind those drills. It is a drill that we just cannot take for granted. This is a life skill that we CANNOT lose as we mature. Many of you know someone who took a digger and watched their life change dramatically.

You want to know a scary statistic? 28,000 deaths occur each year due to falls or fall related injury. 28,000! That is a huge number. You know what I bet is an even bigger number? How many people do you think ended up in a nursing home because of a fall related injury? I know of several.  Training ourselves how to fall and how to get back up might be the most important skill of them all.

These drills may feel silly while you are doing them, but to tell you the truth, they can save your life. Maybe you are wondering what the point of having our left hand on our left knee was or our right hand on our right knee…let me explain that better…aside from a few laughs there is a genuine purpose there.

Picture this…You have a stroke, you are alone, the whole left side of your body is limp, but you still need to call for help. Can you pick yourself up off of the floor and get the help that you need? Maybe that is a morbid image, but it is a possible scenario.

Do not take for granted your ability to get up and down off of the floor and don’t let that skill get away from you. We have to practice it. If nothing else then maybe it will motivate you to be able to get up and down off of the floor to play with your grand-kids!

I don’t believe in too old, because I see people training in here, lifting heavy weights and totally beasting it in their 80’s. You’re not too old and neither are they!  Keep training hard, because these are the skills that will help you age with grace and keep your independence!

Make it Happen,

Coach Meagan

Raking, Shoveling and Weeding – Oh My!

Today I spent the day getting my yard cleaned up. It is amazing how exhausting this chore can be! My husband made fun of my as I volunteered to rake, because it was better exercise than leaf blowing. Something must be wrong with me! 

As the wind blew and stirred up more leaves where I had just raked I was reminded of how important it is to be engaged in what you are doing...even when it is chores!  I didn't do any kind of warm up and I was thinking about how that was kinda numb, because my shoulders were totally burning. 

Raking will soon be over with and winter will approach quickly so let's think about shoveling. Every year we have so many students come in with a sore back or hurt shoulder from shoveling. There is twisting and bending and tossing involved here. I double dog dare you to wear your Myzone this winter when your are shoveling- it is a serious workout, but do we warm up before shoveling? Doubtful. I know I don't.

How about weeding? Every spring we talk about how much our back hurts after spending hours in the garden. We hold this horrid position for hours- of course it hurts! But dang, our gardens look pretty!! We have to pay attention. We have to be engaged in what we are doing.

This is my reminder to be mindful when you are doing your chores. These are the activities that we train for, right? Breathe, brace, warm up and rest!  Be mindful of your form. We are all on a time crunch, but an extra 5 minutes can save you hours, days, weeks of pain and soreness.

Coach Meagan

FitRanx Badges! Read All About It!!

Many of you have heard in some form or another about the new FitRanx program we have started rolling out here at Get Fit NH.  For those of you that have not, ask one of your coaches to talk with you about it.  I bet you didn’t know that there is a whole other fun piece to the FitRanx puzzle!   

That comes in the form of Fitranx Badges! These badges can be earned for doing a variety of different things inside and outside of the gym.  I wont lie I’m actually pretty excited about them, it will give myself as well as all of you some other goals to shoot for.  Maybe you haven’t done a Fitranx level yet, maybe you aren’t currently able to, maybe you just want to have some other stuff to shoot for outside of just the levels themselves.  Well then this is for you!  

Each badge has a certain milestone attached to it that you need to reach in order to get that badge.  After you have earned that badge, your coach will present it to you and you will be able to display it proudly on your very own Fitranx nameplate!

Here's the first six releases:

Into Thin Air: Earned by climbing 100 flights of stairs in a month (1 flight= at least 12 steps)

300 lb club: Earned by having a combine Bench Press, Squat, and Deadlift of at least 300 lbs

Checkpoint: 100% Compliance on a monthly goal (must be tracked)

Triple Shot: Finishing levels 1, 2, and 3 back to back on the same day.  

Water Buffalo: Consume half your bodyweight in ounces of water daily for a month.

500 lb club: Earned by having a combined bench press, squat, and deadlift of at least 500 lbs

Let's Make It Happen!


- Coach Adam

3 Tips to Improve Your Golf Game

First things first - this is all information, I'm not going to bash golf or tell you shouldn’t do it. Not only will these tips keep you from getting injured or aggravating something to the point of injury, it will improve your game as well, trust me. The three most often places we see pain when it comes to golf are: the lower back, the knees, and the elbows, all of which are often a result of lack of mobility somewhere or that you are coming into it cold. Each problem area has a tip associated with it to both improve your game and keep you safe.

#1. The lower back

Possible issue: Most often this is a result of a lack of mobility in one of two places, either the thoracic spine or the hips. If your thoracic spine (the upper back portion of the spine) is unable to rotate as far as it should, that rotation when you drive the ball has to come from somewhere. Most often that comes from the lower back. The thoracic spine (upper back), by design, is meant to rotate 5 to 6 times further than the lumbar spine (lower back). When you make the lower back rotate father than it is supposed to, pain is almost certain. The other possible issue spot is the hips. If the hips are tight and can't rotate to transfer the power on the swing, that rotation has to come from somewhere else, most often the lower back.

Tip #1: Doing both thoracic spine warm-ups and hip warm-ups will not only greatly reduce your risk of injury, but also create more power in your swing because you will be able to rotate further and drive your hips through better. Examples of exercises you can do are 10 reps of open book on each side and 5 groiners on each side. Even some foam rolling through the glutes and hip flexors have be very helpful.

#2. The knees

Possible issue: Just like with the example of the lower back, when one place is supposed to move and it can’t, that movement has to be made up somewhere. If you try to rotate to follow through on your swing and your hips are tight, that rotation has to be made up somewhere. The other place it will be made up is at the knees. The hip joint is designed to move in pretty much any direction. The knee is not. The knee is designed to move forward and backward, and that’s pretty much it. Think about it like joints in your fingers - your fingers can bend and extend but what would happen if someone grabbed the tip of your finger and twisted it? Not good.

Tip #2: Hip warmups such as groiners, triangle mobility, and even foam rolling through the glutes and hip flexors will help you gain mobility in your hips and avoid knee issues. Not only will doing these exercises help your knees, but it'll also help increase the power of your swing since the hips are the most important part of driving the ball.

#3. The elbows

Possible issue: This issue is less common and often comes more from a lack of strength in the joint than a lack of mobility. Golf swings involve major transfers of energy and if you aren’t careful, the whip of that transfer through the elbow can cause some issues. Think about what would happen if someone grabbed your hand and quickly jerked it side to side…not too great on the elbow. That’s what happens on every golf swing. If you aren’t taking the preparations to strengthen and protect the connective tissue that holds that joint together it could take a toll on your elbows.

Tip #3: Work on grip strength. Holding heavy kettle bells or hanging from the bar are both great ways to do this.

-Coach Adam

Bittersweet Recovery Week

Next Scheduled Recovery Week: Sept 4 - Sept 9, 2017

I have to admit, this is my least favorite recovery week. Maybe it shouldn't be that way, as I absolutely love autumn, but still, is summer almost really over? 

Truth be told this may be our most important recovery week of the year. The next one is not until the end of December, which means this training block is the longest of the year. My body needs that focused recovery week, physically and emotionally.​

It bears repeating - recovery weeks are not haphazard or just vacation times for your coaches. They are a purposefully planned part of the training cycle, and critical for long term development and injury prevention.

You may have noticed that as we get closer to recovery week the daily and weekly training intensity has increased.

That is purposeful.

Because we are working toward a week of MacroRecovery, we are intentionally working at a higher level.

Then we will take a scheduled, purposeful rest.​

Because whether you think so or not, you cannot and should not train really hard, all the time.

In fact one of our training program design principles is what is referred to as MED.

Minimum Effective Dose.

In other words, what is the MINIMUM stimulus we need to get better - stronger, leaner, better conditioned, etc.?

What? The minimum you say? That is NOT my style. Go hard or go home!

That WILL work, at least for a short time. Until your training overwhelms your ability to recover, and you start breaking down.

How can you tell that is happening? That you're not recovering fast enough from your training? Here's a few warning signs:

Altered Heart Rate and Blood Pressure

You are having a hard time getting your heart rate up, or it's beating like a racehorse when you feel like you aren't really doing much.​

Poor Sleep Patterns

​An increasing pattern of the inability to sleep restfully.

Decreased Performance

Your training loads have stagnated or even decreased.​

Mood Swings

Mr. Crank-Pants, anyone?

Eating Habits Disrupted or Compromised

It's not just a matter of will power. Overreaching and overtraining can cause physical cravings if our bodies are missing crucial nutrients because of too much physiological or psychological stress.​

Decreased Immunity

If you are getting sick frequently (eg. more than one cold a year) your immune system is probably compromised.​

Increase In Injury

This could be not recovering from the normal microtrauma caused by training, for example you are sore for 2 or 3 days after training, or you are getting strains, sprains, aches and pains that you normally do not.​

Lack of Progress (Plateau)

This could be either in body composition (not losing bodyfat/gaining muscle) or not making gains in the gym.​

Enter Recovery Weeks

Recovery weeks are designed to give you rest; physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually.

You see stress is not just a "mental" thing. Do you realize when you train you are stressing yourself out, on purpose? That gets added on top of all the other stress in your life, whether it be work, home, or the jerk who cut you off in traffic. Your central nervous system doesn't care, it just knows when you have too much of it, and it doesn't like it!

​And while you can't stop the knucklehead from driving like an idiot, there are things you can do to avoid excess systemic stress, and taking recovery weeks is one of them.

Here's My Top 5 Things To Do On Recovery Week

  1. Catch up on my reading
  2. Get some extra sleep
  3. Spend more time with my family
  4. Eat at a more leisurely pace
  5. Figure out more things to torture you with. (Just seeing if you are paying attention)

​What about you?

You see you don't have to "not move" for a week. There is nothing wrong with getting outdoors, taking a walk, hitting the rock climbing gym, spending some time on the foam roller and stretching, getting a massage, and/or taking some long showers or baths.

Those things will aid your recovery and help you relax; running 2 or 3 or 5 miles every day (or every other day), or going to spin class, will not

I train hard, but more importantly I train and recover appropriately. 

I am in it for the long game. When I am sick, or excessively tired, or injured I cannot train.

THAT is what sets me back.

Recovery is what drives me forward. On a daily, weekly, and quarterly basis.

​You ready to get better with me?

MAKE IT HAPPEN!

Coach Dean

PS. Below is the "Science Stuff" I promised - Enjoy!


All About Recovery Weeks

Our recovery weeks are what I would call Macro-Recovery. In other words we take a planned week off every training phase in order to let the body rest up from hard training and get ready for the next phase.

But did you know you can do even better than that? We have a number of athletes in the Get Fit NH family who participate in our Bioforce HRV monitoring program, which measures your systemic stress load on a daily basis, which allows us to fine-tune the recovery process on a daily, weekly and monthly basis. You can catch up on that by clicking here

Read on why properly planned and adequate recovery is important for you!

The Recovery Curve

I saw the recovery curve for the first time during my time with Australian physical preparation coach Ian King. His principles laid the foundation for the way we program, train and especially recover here at Get Fit NH. The principles that work with professional athletes apply to us too!

The following illustrates a “good” recovery curve:

The green line represents what we are all looking for – continual, never ending progress over time. We are getting stronger, faster, thinner, better looking (ok at least that’s what I wish for).

Reality Check – ain’t gonna happen. The process of changing your body is not linear, in fact what we are looking at in an optimal training environment is more of a “One step back brings me Two steps forward”.

A closer look at the chart will help explain what I mean.

The red line represents Equilibrium. This is where your body wants to stay, no matter if your goal is losing fat, gaining lean, or both. As you have no doubt found out, forcing your body to change is hard work – really hard work. When you walk into Get Fit NH, our training is designed to elicit that change. But it’s not as simple as “working out” day after day after day. In fact as I am about to illustrate, training without proper recovery is actually hurting you, not making you better.

The blue line represents the “recovery curve”. Starting at the left hand of the chart all the lines intersect. For this illustration that point is where your first training occurred – you “worked out”.

But what’s going on?

Instead of performance going up, that line is actually heading down – this is what is called Depletion. If you think about it makes sense – you have worked hard, you are fatigued, your body is depleted of nutrients – you are spent!

Don’t worry, your body will get over it, if you treat it right! This is what we call Adaptation. Your body wants to be able to handle the increased demand that was placed on it, and starts the process of getting better.

You are in charge of if and how fast that happens. A few of the factors that influence this adaptation include recovery nutrition, stress levels, sleep habits, supportive nutrition, age, and training history.

The recovery curve continues with Supercompensation. Here is how Coach King describes this process:

“It is only when recovery is allowed that we see the super-compensation effect, the unique phenomenon where the bodies physical capacity is elevated in response to training, in anticipation of another exposure to the same stimulus.” – King, I, 1999/2000, Foundations of Physical Preparation

In other words your body has gotten better in response to your training, a new Equilibrium is established and this state is when we will ideally train again. Our programming at Get Fit NH is carefully designed to give this the best chance of occurring, but as I hope you are discovering, you have a lot to do with this with how you treat your recovery!

As you can see, when things are clicking, this process when repeated over and over means you are getting better and better, the blue line is headed up – pretty cool!

The flip side to all this is what happens when the recovery process isn’t working so well.

This chart represents recovery gone “bad”:

When we continue to train in a state of “Depletion”, regardless of the reason, the adaptation to super-compensation effect doesn’t occur, and instead of getting better, we find ourselves in a downward cycle. This can happen when we train the same muscle groups too soon, when we haven’t taken the steps described above to recover optimally (sleep and nutrition for instance) regardless of time between training, when we train too hard coming off an illness, etc. The last thing we want to happen is new equilibrium to be established in a downward pattern – not good.

The long and short of it is your body absolutely needs to recover from hard training. Consistently training in a fatigued state results in injury and illness. Your body is an amazing machine designed to put up with a lot, but it was also designed to need rest.

Which leads us to:

Recovery Weeks!

Face it – you can get beat up anywhere. Our responsibility at Get Fit NH is to help you get better!

That includes recovery weeks. We have found that somewhere between 8 and 12 weeks of training is just about right to take a full week off and let your body recover.

That doesn’t mean that you spend your training time on the couch eating bon-bons, but if you insist on going down to PF and hitting the weights or running 10 miles every morning, your body will suffer in the long run, and perhaps even in the short term.

If you find yourself fighting this concept, ask yourself this – Is your unwillingness to take a week off a well reasoned decision based on what you know to be true, or is it that your attachment to training is so strong emotionally that makes it so hard? You will not lose all you have gained by taking the week off, I assure you! Again to quote Coach King, “…if you don’t (take time off)…most of you are going to lose it anyway!”

So now that we have established you are ready, willing and able to embrace recovery week, what do you do?

Glad you asked!

Three Steps for Successful Recovery

1.) Physical Rest and Regeneration

– Our bodies must rest and recover to prevent over-training (or under-recovering) issues so that we can come back 100% healthy and energized for the next phase of the program

– Focus on maintaining and/or increasing flexibility and tissue health by stretching and foam rolling daily. 15-30 minutes is fantastic!

– Daily restorative walks are beneficial during this week. 30-60 minutes briskly walking (not jogging/running) will keep your body refreshed and active, without negating the purpose of this week. Don’t overdo it!

2.) Physiological and Psychological Rest and Regeneration

– We must normalize key anabolic hormones, refill muscle glycogen, increase caloric intake, and prevent any diet induced catabolism (losses of lean body mass) so that we can enjoy greater fat loss for the next phase of the program

– We have taken the road less traveled by being flexible eaters with a long-term approach to success and thus we will take a break from our aggressive fat loss nutrition plans. This is not a free for all, so stay away from your “trigger foods” (junk foods and sweets) that open the door to excessive calorie intake.

– Instead plan (key word) and enjoy 2 or 3 controlled free meals to reward yourself for all of your hard work, but do not overdo it!

– Caveat: If your nutrition habits have been less than optimal, more than likely none of this applies to you. Instead now is the time to plan and prepare to make the changes necessary to see the results you want. Spend some time with a coach and your Jumpstart Nutrition Guide if you need help.

3.) Celebrate the Fruits of Your Labor

– Take some time to reflect on how far you have come since you joined Get Fit NH in terms of improving your overall health, body composition, and performance

– Enjoy your results!

THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!

We would just like to take the time to thank you from the bottom of our hearts for all of your hard work and dedication to improving your health and fitness… keep Making It Happen!

​Coach Dean

P.S. If you are serious about maximizing your training/recovery cycle, you owe it to yourself to invest in this! Look further into our Bioforce HRV monitoring program, which measures your systemic stress load on a daily basis, which allows us to fine-tune the recovery process on a daily, weekly and monthly basis. You can catch up on that by clicking here.

Postpartum Training and Nutrition

For those of you getting ready to have a baby and/or those of you who had a baby in the past year or so, this blog is for you! If you have no intensions of having a baby or you are squeamish then please X out before I make you uncomfortable 🙂

This topic came by request and I am happy to share my thoughts here as I am a mom of (almost) Irish twins and trained right up until the day of delivery and the same day I was cleared by my doctor postpartum!

Let’s talk about training first…

Training feels different after having a baby, doesn’t it? Your doctor will generally clear you to train 6-8 weeks after having a baby. If you have ever returned to training that quickly after having a baby, then you are about to nod your head to everything I write about today. If you are getting ready to have a baby, then here are some things that will be different (at least for a little while) when you return.

  • Core work. Planks, push-ups, mountain climbers, in and outs…all of those exercises are going to feel very different for the first few weeks. It can take your body up to a year to recover after delivery so these exercises may cause some strange and sharp pulls in the lower abdomen. Modification is recommended as you may feel a quick and sharp pain. That is a sign that you need to back off and let your body continue to recover.
  • Jumping. Yes, the rumors are true. Jump rope, wide-outs, ladders, squat jumps, etc will never be the same. It is not a coincidence that you see a bunch of ladies scurry to the restroom after jumping jacks. Bladder control is compromised after delivery.

In my personal experience, these things have improved with consistent training and proper modifications. If you experienced a more traumatic delivery, there may be repercussions which will mean more extreme modifications. In my coaching experience, I have had students with severe hip displacement as well as lingering back issues which have required modification for over 2 years. The point is that when your doctor clears you to train, it is not advised to dive into the performance level on the board for all of the exercises. I know you are motivated to drop the extra weight and tighten back up, but you need to remind your body what it feels like to train especially after baby put your body through the ringer.

Training while pregnant - yes! If you have been training, then it is highly recommended that you stay after it. Here’s my personal 2 cents…I absolutely do not want to know what labor and delivery feels like as an unfit person. That is a serious and powerful workout. Imagine how much “easier” you will make it on yourself if you are STRONG!

Postpartum nutrition is up next. You just had a baby. The past 9 months you have been caving into cravings (or maybe you haven’t) and your body is a little more “jiggly” than it was before. You are determined to get this weight off and tighten back up. Postpartum nutrition should be no different than our nutrition program geared toward fat loss. Just eat real food! This is a safe way to eat all the time. It is healthy for nursing mom’s and babies and non-nursing mom’s and babies. If you want to drop fat, then drop the processed nonsense and just eat real food. The rules don’t change when it comes to nutrition and fat loss.

I hope this helps answer some questions about how you may be feeling post-baby and for those of you wondering what happens once baby comes. We are here to help along the way!

Coach Meagan

Shining the Light on Happiness

I often receive wonderful emails from students at Get Fit NH proclaiming their happiness because of the progress they are making.

On the front page of our website you’ll read: “We love coaching because when you get healthier you automagically get happier, and the world needs more happier!”

How can you argue with that? Everyone needs a bit more happiness. And I’m going to share a bit with you from Theresa, a Rockstar out in Epsom.

“A few days ago you sent me the portion chart for men and women (*Coach Nancy's note: you can see that on the free tools page on The Grateful Plate).
THANK YOU for the "gentle" reminder. 

That took me back in my mind's eye of the very first Nutrition Class I took on a Wednesday evening April 2015 in Epsom NH with you as the presenter

Shortly after absorbing all that information then, I committed that info to memory and followed through

Progress is progress
Change is happening
Life is a constant
Never stagnant
5 almonds = my thumb
3 eggs/ 1/2 chicken breast or any protein that is the size of my palm is my portion at each meal
Vegetables are never measured
Water Water Water and oh yes, more water
This works!!

Tha​nk you
Thank you
And oh yes did I mention to you Nancy how grateful I am for the savage training and epic nutrition coaching coming out of Get Fit NH
Thank you again if I have failed at all in this email to thank you
God Bless Everyone!!
Theresa"

Theresa isn’t alone. She and many others have increased their happiness by increasing their health. And your coaches love to help you.

-Coach Nancy

Understanding Kettlebell Swing Cues

Kettlebell swings are one of the most challenging exercises that we do. They are a serious skill that I think we underestimate. I could coach the swing all day long. There is always something we can freshen up. There are a few cues that we use frequently that I would like to dive into a little deeper. It is important that you understand the cues, why we use them and why it is important.

1. “Attack the zipper” or “Thumb to bum”

We wish there was a more polite way to get our point across, but these seem to work the best. Here’s the deal, with kettlebell swings you have to have your arms up high in the back. In fact, if you are swinging correctly your thumbs should “real life” touch your bum at the bottom part of the swing. If you are not “attacking the zipper” and your hands are hanging low, then you are putting some serious unnecessary strain on the back by bending at the waist.

2. "Reach way back behind out”

This sort of goes hand in hand with “thumb to bum”, except what we are looking for is that you not only keep your hands up high, but also get your thumbs all the way back between your legs (to your bum!). By reaching way back, you will regain the power from your glutes and hamstring to power through the movement. If you do not reach back, then you are likely to find that power elsewhere such as your lower back. The kettlebell should touch the cheeks at the bottom of the kettlebell swing.

3. “Throw the kettlebell back”

When you are the top of your kettlebell swing, it is easy to let gravity do the job of dropping the bell back, BUT kettlebell swings are a HIGHLY explosive and powerful exercise and we are looking to be ENGAGED through this entire movement. We talk about “staying tight”. If you are throwing the kettlebell back, you have no choice but to stay tight and you have no choice but to explode back to the top of that movement.

We could coach the kettlebell swing all day long. This exercise is a skill that we continuously work on mastering. I hope explaining some of the coaching cues gives you a better idea of what we are looking for and why it is important!

Keep making it happen!
Coach Meagan

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