Personal… Training or Torture?

Last week was certainly exciting if not hard, and when I say hard I mean HARD!

I commenced my personal training sessions (2×1 hour sessions) – it’s been on hold for a while due to one thing or another but with the new year and my sisters impending wedding approaching it’s now or never!

So after my LBT session followed by some cardio on Monday my personal training session commenced on the Tuesday evening with Barry at Pure Fitness Gym in Lindley, Huddersfield.

I have been a member of the gym for about 18 months now and I rate it very highly (take a look at my 1 year anniversary blog post). Following a heavy amount of investment to bring the latest technology and comfort, which includes a top of the range spa and sauna experience (much better than some day spas I have been to) along with the friendliness and support of all the Pure Fitness employees I have to say it is the best gym in Huddersfield – the fact that I stayed 6 months let alone 18 is an achievement in itself and something the whole team should be proud of! (Keep it up my membership is due in another 18 months!)

So back to working out, there’s many reasons why you should undertake exercise and this is something I try live by. Not only does exercise improve your health, even if you have already been diagnosed with something, but it can go a long way to prevent the onset of several life-threatening conditions, such as heart diseasediabetes and cancer. All of which I wish to prevent especially as my great-grandma died of breast cancer, I wish to do all I can to live a long and healthy life for my children.
 
  1. It’s good for your heart
  2. Exercise promotes weight loss
  3. Exercise prevents osteoporosis
  4. Exercise lowers high blood pressure 
  5. Exercise is an excellent de-stressor (something I can certainly vouch for!)

Additionally exercise can make you look great – younger and fitter. Who needs any more convincing?

Coming back to personal training, Barry is well aware that I want to rid myself of stomach fat and get my upper body toned and keep it that way so we undertook a variety of exercises in the first session which lasted one hour.

Session 1

We commenced with a warm up on the bike – generally I avoid the bike at all costs as I find it so uncomfortable. Once warmed up we moved on to machine weights in order to work my core and side before moving onto some TRX. TRX is a training tool that leverages gravity and the user’s body weight to complete 100s of exercises. I actually really enjoyed TRX and am looking forward to using it a little more.

Moving on we did a little circuit utilising battle rope, core bags and a bike. The battle ropes are certainly harder than they look but you can certainly feel them working your arms, shoulders and even your core – definitely a fab new piece of equipment that has been introduced to the gym.

During this session my heart rate got a little high, reaching over 185bpm on some occasions so Barry ensured that I rested between activities in order to bring my heart rate down to the best efficiency of fat burning. Thankfully it does drop down quite quickly.

Following the torturous circuit session we went on to do some HIIT training on the cycle we only managed to do 5 interval sprints of 40 secs low level and 20 secs High. High-intensity interval training (HIIT) describes any workout that alternates between intense bursts of activity and fixed periods of less-intense activity or even complete rest. For example, a good starter workout is running as fast as you can for 1 minute and then walking for 2 minutes. Repeat that 3-minute interval five times for a 15-minute, fat-blasting workout.

A hard session but certainly enjoyable – thankfully Wednesday meant rest day!

Session 2

After the DOMS (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness) had kicked in on the Wednesday evening I certainly wasn’t looking forward to an early morning PT session on the Thursday. However I know that in order to achieve the body I want I have to work for it and work bloody hard indeed!

Barry started me off on the Cross Trainer to warm up with the indication I needed to keep my heart rate between 140-150bpm. Generally I succeeded at this but having tested my resting heart rate earlier in the morning it indicates that I have quite a high resting heart rate which is effectively below average. The information I read behind this is that there are risks associated with high resting heart rates so I plan to get myself checked out by my doctor especially as since I bought my Polar FT7 HRM my heart rate has always been high – especially when undertaking cardio exercises, so part of the plan with the PT is to assess how my heart rate improves over the sessions.

After a good rest we did some resistance work on the arms (triceps using the cable machine) working on 3 sets of 12,10,8 increasing the weights.

The sessions ended with weighted walking lunges on the little running track in the gym starting on marker 10 then 8 and last 6 with a cool down on the rower – by this point I was well and truly knackered! I was out of breath, my arms and legs were failing me but I pushed on for 3 minutes before stretching out.

I really enjoyed the sessions – they were a bit of a whirlwind so I plan to ensure I record my activities for my next blog posts and of course treat you to some more pictures of me looking my worst!

Friday meant by usual LBT class and I have to say it was one of my worst performances ever! I ached so much from the week’s activities, hopefully this will improve as time goes on but I lost 1.3lbs this week – happy days!

Overall it may feel like torture whilst you’re having PT but that feeling that you get from knowing that you are doing a bloody good workout is certainly something worth experiencing!

Katrina - PFGym

N.B. Facts, figures and before and after pics will be provided at the end of my personal training journey!

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Upping the Weight Game

So this week marks my first full attempt at using the scary room in the gym i.e. the weights room!

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In nearly 12 months of attending the gym, its a room I have generally stayed away from, but after constantly moaning at Oliver – the guy who takes our LBT class – that I really need to be shifting more fat around the waist and toning up he recommended I do weights.

I didn’t have a clue what I should be doing i.e. what weights do I use, do I use machines, how many reps should I do etc. so I got booked in for a session to put a little programme together.

I couldn’t tell you what moves I am doing exactly, I am sure I will learn them in time, but I am pretty impressed with the amounts I can lift at an early stage. I have to say it is also a little addictive too!

After my first full session doing weights on my own followed by a class I was gobsmacked at just how many calories I had burnt – 1097 calories in just over 2 hours! A definite record for me! Plus half of that was burning fat – even better!

Weights

I love going in the weights room now but when I am on my own I can slacken off and chose lighter weights, it’s only if Oliver is passing and see’s that I’m not putting enough effort in that he makes me up my game (which is why I have added PT to my birthday wish list).

On Friday I was impressed to see the weights room full of girls – honestly do not be scared! I admit I was but now I know what I am doing I am more than happy to enter a room full of burly blokes who are lifting 50kg whilst I stick with 10kg (for now). I definitely recommend asking the staff at your gym to give you some advice on what you should be doing, as once you know you can make more of your workouts! The guys are there to help you and if they don’t want to then I would think twice about where you are a member!

Right now, a day after a 45 minute LBT class followed by another hour doing various weights my glutes and thighs are on fire. I may struggle getting up and down steps for a couple of days, but without a doubt I feel great and will be back in the weights room on Monday… after doing my LBT class of course!

I shall keep tracking my progress and report back!

Banana & Peanut Butter Protein Ice Cream

Well I promised the recipe for the Banana Protein Ice Cream using my new protein powder from The Protein Works, so here it is!

This is surprisingly easy to make and it’s likely you will already have all the ingredients required to make this tasty little treat.

Ingredients

  • 1 Banana – I used a fairly large one
  • 85g Cottage Cheese (I used Sainsbury’s Be Good to Yourself)
  • 1x Scoop The Protein Works Banana Diet Whey
  • 2 tbsp. Peanut Butter (I used Smooth Organic)

The addition of peanut butter is optional so there will be no issue with the ice cream should you decide to leave out. For my next batch I plan to add coconut!

Overall this makes 3 smallish tubs of ice cream i.e. around 90g of ice cream per pot. Which in my opinion is just enough to satisfy a sweet craving!

Put all in a blender and whizz up until smooth then transfer into suitable freezer containers and leave for about an hour for a easy scoop option or leave a bit longer if you like you’re ice cream fairly hard.

This takes less than five minutes to whizz up so perfect if you are in a rush but fancy a protein packed treat on your return from the gym!

Don’t forget if you use referral code KC18322 in the registration page of The Protein Works they will gift you with a free 250g pouch of their Whey Protein 80 in whichever flavour you fancy!

Nutritional Information (per individual serving)

  • 153 Calories (without peanut butter = 90 calories, whole quantity with PB = 457 calories)
  • 6.5g Fat (of which 1.7 Saturates)
  • 13.8g Carbs
  • 12.1g Protein

Enjoy!

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