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How long should you work out for?

We get asked all the time, why are your workouts so short? What can I possibly gain from a 30 minute workout?

Great question, but I’ll need to clarify that our workouts are at most 30 minutes, very, very rarely do they go over that. In fact, we have a lot of sub 10 minute workouts. But… the metabolic results are absolutely staggering compared to the traditional one hour hard slog. So here’s a video of Julius explaining our take on exercise duration, and why working out for an hour is actually doing you harm (if you can even be bothered, or have the time to do a 60 minute workout!).

Check it out!

 

Be x Do = Have

Getting fit is about being fit…
BE X DO = HAVE

Most people want to BE fit.

In order to BE fit, they believe they need to DO exercise, and HAVE a perfect physique. Only once they have their perfect physique, will they feel that they are fit.

This way of thinking is the sole reason that most people never actually BEcome fit — this way of looking at your goal is making the DOing into your focus and therefore a chore, whilst also thinking that you are not fit until you have a fit looking body

— so until then you will be fat.

If you instead change the equation and start with BEing fit, you will already have the mindset of a fit person — you will automatically DO what fit people do. You will eat like a fit person and train like a fit person, because you are in fact fit (you just let yourself slip a bit).

You are a fit person who got fat. You are not a fat person trying to get fit. See how in these two sentences there is a world of difference – what you are is what you will gravitate towards. If you are a fat person trying to get fit, you will gravitate back to being fat. If you are a fit person trying to lose your fat, you will gravitate back to being fit.

This mindset is a shift that will help massively when you have a “bad day”. For a fat person, a bad day will justify that they are fat, and therefore near impossible to get fit. For a fit person, it is just a glitch in the road to lose their excess weight, and will just add to their motivation the next day.

BE fit in your mind, then you will automatically DO what fit people do, so you can HAVE the perfect physique.

With us it is all about the DOing of a healthy life. If you are not BEing healthy in your mind, you are leaving room for excuses to creep in and allow you give up and remain unfit and fat.

 

You CAN do this!! We believe in you!!

Character driven, not behaviour driven.

This morning I received an email that really got me excited, I’ll copy and paste it here:
Hi Julius,

Just thought I would let you know, I managed to enter the Ironman 2012 at Port Macquarie. The 1000 slots filled up in 32 minutes from the time it opened.

Now the real training starts.

Ivan

For those who haven’t heard of one, an ironman is the pinnacle of human physical achievement, people train for thousands and thousands of hours to complete an ironman (3.5km swim, 180km bike ride, 42km run). Imagine running a Marathon after riding from the Sunshine Coast to the Gold Coast, which you do after swimming from Maroochydore to Mooloolaba!

 

People get so excited that they get Ironman tattoos to commemorate their achievement.
Well Ivan is going to be one of these people (not the tattoo though).  Ivan will complete the Port Macquarie ironman and I have no doubt in my mind whatsoever.  And you know why?

 

Well, I’ll tell you a little story.

 

Around 6 months ago, a very overweight man named Ivan walked into Stripfit, wanting to get results, a bit pensive about what it would take.  Ivan had tried everything; crash diets, shakes, low carb, high protein, and while all of these had helped him drop some weight, they had failed to provide him with what he truly wanted – long term PERMANENT fat loss [sound familiar?]

 

Ivan Now

Ivan also mentioned that he wanted to do an Ironman.

Now looking at Ivan (right), you would be forgiven for thinking to yourself “yeah right”.  But at Stripfit, we have seen too many physical miracles

to be taken aback by such a seemingly audacious goal.

“Who are we to kill the dreams of others?”  I ask myself on a daily basis.  Our work at Stripfit only begins with fitness, what we love to sink our teeth into is uncovering the power within a person, the magnificence, the beauty.  And this begins with a compelling goal, something Ivan

came with – prepackaged, ready to rock.

Ivan has been training with us every thursday night at 6.30pm with his equally inspiring son, Steven.  Every week, without fail, they amaze and inspire us.

To date, the boys have lost 40kg each.  And what is most interesting for you and impressive for us is that they have done it consistently.  Every week, 1 or 2kg have come off on the scales.  Not 10kg in one week, none the next; just a kilo or two per week.  They haven’t tried to “break any records” as Ivan puts it, they have just changed their lifestyle and stayed consistent.

Sounds simple?  It is… If you are Ivan.  I mean the last 6 months have been a minefield of slobbery.  We’ve had christmas, then the floods “we’re running out of food” [what a cool time for chip companies], then easter!

But even on these week, 1 or 2 kilos came off.

Ivan is not a show pony, and understands that there is no such thing as a “quick fix”.  To get where you really want to go requires what we

call a “Mindset of Excellence”.  Every day, in every way, living as though you were being followed by a camera crew, documenting your life for your great grandchildren to see and elarn from.

Ivan and Steven do this, and will continue to do this every day for the rest of their lives.  It’s not a quick fix, it is a lifestyle, it is a life…

Character driven, not behaviour driven.

It’s people like Ivan who make me truly grateful for the job that I have.  Within these walls, we experience inspiration in it’s rawest form.  Every hour of every day powerful things happen in here.

Stay inspirational everybody!

How to get rid of a stitch

Karen asked a great question, here it is:

A question for Julius i guess is I am reading the chapter about drinking til you wee clear,,,,great name by the way…i drink 2-3 litres everyday anyway but it talks about drinking during exercise…i find i get really bad stitches in my right side if i drink just before or during exercise….any helping hints?? The stitches get so bad i am doubled over in pain…i try to deep massage them out but they wont relieve for up to an hour or so….i try not to drink for an hour b4 exercise either as i find this also encourages stitches….

Here’s the answer:

Hey Karen, yeah stitches are definitely a result of your water. It’s a good idea to not drink too much before exercise, but long term, your performance may suffer if you are dehydrated. Usually, gastric emptying (when your stomach releases the water into your intestines) gets rid of the issue because your water is not sitting in one big “lump.” However, your fast weight loss has left you with so much extra space inside your frame (where the fat used to be) that your bowels essentially bounce around inside, which in turn stretches the muscles and tendons in your core, which then causes it to cramp.

Solution part 1: tightening your core muscles will definitely help, as a flat tummy will mean your abdominal muscles are tight around your organs.

Solution part 2: put a bit of himalayan rock salt on your food (you can get the best from Cyndi O’Meara at changing habits – www.changinghabits.com.au). Here’s why: on an empty stomach, drink a litre of really cold water as fast as you can, you should feel your stomach (under your sternum) go cold, then a few seconds later, you will feel the cold pass further down your insides, as it reaches your gut. At this point, it should (in theory) cross the intestine wall and enter your blood. If you feel it sitting there, however, you are not absorbing the water fast enough; this means that you are therefore low on electrolytes (found in real salt). When you exercise, you sweat out a lot of sodium (an electrolyte replaced through real salt – not that fake chemical crap woolies will sell you), and it is essential to replace this. So put a bit of real salt on your food, and try the exercise again a few days later. If you feel the water disperse into you blood, then you are right to try exercising with water

Hope this helps ya!

4 minute workout

check this out.  No excuse to not work out – It takes me longer to go to the toilet after a mexican dinner:

 

Also, here are the movement standards for the three exercises in this workout:

 

Have fun!

The World Needs Heroes

FITlosophy 2 coverThis is an excerpt from the book FITlosophy 2.

In every generation, a special few will be born to the right family with the right upbringing – be it love or abuse, something has led them to the realisation that there is more to life than this. There is more the their lives than this. From those obscure places will come our heroes. Our superheroes. Our leaders.

OOC knows no class boundaries, no age limits, no sexism nor racism. Sweeping across the world like a blanket, it turns day into night. Earth into hell. Hope, into despair.

By the end of the decade, 99% of the population will be infected or partially infected with OOC. We know we are infected by our collection and hoarding of possessions. We eat and drink and spend to excess. We live outside of our means. We obsess all day over this imaginary thing called money.

And we continue to breed. 3rd and 4th generation OOC’s are being born every day. Born into families where the talk is excess, the action is laziness and the excuses are in the form of blame.

These children have little hope. Parents and grandparents too far gone to know they are infected themselves, let alone being able to help their children.

You may feel a slight pull on your heartstrings, or an overwhelming tug on your soul, but if you feel anything from reading these few pages, you may be one of the few. The only hope we have left.

You can help the world. No matter how small you feel right now, or how deeply infected you might be, you can help. Imagine yourself as a harp. If you can feel us plucking your strings, if you can feel the tune we’re playing deep inside you; you’re probably the hero we’ve been waiting for.

The hero the world has been waiting for…

Your time, my friend… has come.

7 keys to becoming a shredded tradie

I did a podcast on the Tradie Business Show and promised I’d send a workout program to the host for tradies.  Julius and I decided we’d go one better and give a bit more.

This guide isn’t just relevant to tradies, but to men in general.  I’m sure you’ll get some serious value from it.

 

Julius After

Julius now (top) and about 4 months ago (above).

Realise you are at an advantage.

Most other workers have non-physical jobs. They have to do things outside of work hours to increase their average daily energy needs, like running or walking the dog or some other form of aerobic, long, boring exercise. You get paid to move around all day. Therefore, you don’t need to do any ‘cardio’.

 

Plan your exercise habits.

There is no point starting a workout or diet plan for a short term fix. Plan to create lifetime habits. There are 24 hours in a day. If you work for 8 and sleep for 8, that means you have 8 left. Fit some exercise in there and plan to do your exercise at the same time every day.

Most tradies I know like to get a jump on the day and start work early, so a workout after work, or after the kids go to bed (what my husband and I do) are viable options. I like to do it after the kids are asleep because they are then not a convenient distraction. It was weird to start, but now it’s a habit I feel compelled to do every night.

 

Plan your food habits.

Don’t eat for hunger, eat for good health. We use an app called Myfitnesspal to track all the food we eat for the day. Better yet, we use it to plan our food for the next few days. It may sound weird if you’re a foodaholic, but we eat the exact same 4 meals every single day for about 4-8 weeks. Once the habit is built, it’s hard to break. A life spent chasing variety opens the door to gluttony. Pack your food into a 6-pack bag that you can buy online or from any supplement store.

 

Our food for the day is this:

 

Breakfast:

Egg white pies

Pour a 500ml box of egg whites into a 12 hole muffin tray. Put a slice of tomato into each one, and as many herbs as you like. Bake for 24 minutes at the highest setting. I have 4, Julius has 8.

 

Morning lunch:

Large Aldi can of tuna in springwater, mixed with a large can of diced tomatoes (also from Aldi) cheap and organic. Julius eats this, I eat a banana.

 

Lunch:

Barramundi fillet fried in coconut oil (me: 200g, Julius 400g)

Asparagus fried in the same coconut oil until it is crispy (a bunch each)

 

Dinner:

200g(me) & 600g (Julius) of lean meat steamed/grilled with veggies or a salad. We eat dinner with the kids at 5 and then don’t eat anything, even after our workout.

 

Metabolism Accelerator:

Twice a week, we carb re-feed. Which we call a ‘metabolism accelerator’. Foods we Carb re-feed on…….

  • Oats with water and a scoop of protein powder. (If you drink milk, make it low fat – it’s a carb refeed, not a calorie dump).
  • Chocolate ice cream. In a high speed blender, blend frozen bananas, one egg white and a bit of cacao powder. Yum!
  • Fruit salad (as big as you want)
  • smoothies
  • Healthy Junk Banana Bread (Julius eats a whole loaf)
  • You can add brown rice or sweet potato to your regular dinner as a carb boost too.

Sometimes re-feed turns into an all in madhouse feast. If this happens, just make sure you only eat carbs – don’t add fats into a cheat meal. Also, make sure the madness doesn’t extend for longer than 2 hours. To this end, we start carb load at 3pm, finish at 5 and make sure that we do our biggest workout after the kids are asleep – that way the carbs go to the right place – muscle, instead of fat.

 

Get outside the comfort zone twice a week.

You know that feeling when you run up a flight of stairs as fast as you can? Keep pushing for another flight and you get to a place we like to call “outside the comfort zone”. It’s when you feel like you have to lay down on your back to avoid dying. Every time you get outside your comfort zone, your body reacts by making your heart and lungs stronger.   Get outside the comfort zone as many times as you can in about 15 minutes, and do it at least twice a week to turn your body into a fat burning furnace. Seriously, that’s all you actually need.

 

Some of our favourite metabolic sessions are:

 

Running light posts.

Sprint from one lightpost to another, then jog the next. Repeat for about 10-20 minutes. When you start out, you may need to walk instead of jog. As you get fitter, you can sprint two lightposts, and jog one.

 

Street sprints.

Our street is about 100m long. Starting at one end, we run as fast as we can to the other end. Julius gives me a head start and then tries to catch me. If he catches me, he gets to slap me on the butt as he overtakes. Its like a romantic date….hahahaha!

 

Burpees.

50 burpees as fast as you can. It takes anywhere between 2 minutes and 8 minutes. Either way, it’s a very quick way to get outside of your comfort zone. We do ours in the lounge or in the back yard with the kids playing around us.

 

Full body explosive movements.

Any combination of full body movements will push you outside your comfort zone. Think things like squats, pushups, pullups, jumps, skipping, running, swimming. If you’re struggling for ideas, we’ve got a program called 8 week athlete that has 1 or 2 of these type of exercises per day for people who have little to no equipment.

 

 

Julius working out in the garage late at night.

 

Build bigger muscles.

So I can perve on you when I run past your job site. But more importantly, bigger muscles require more fuel on a day to day basis. If you increase your muscle mass, you will be able to eat more without gaining weight. My husband (Julius) can eat 5,000 calories and still lose weight because he has built a lot of muscle, and because he gets outside the comfort zone twice a week.

Julius’ current workout program.

Sunday (also carb day)

Legs:
lunge around the block (about 900 lunges with our block)

If you are still standing (which will happen after about 3 weeks of trying), do the following:

Squats – 3×8 wide legs

Squats – 3×8 close legs

Leg press – 3×12 wide legs

Leg press – 3×12 close legs

Leg extensions – 150 (break it up however you want)

Leg curls – 100 (break it up however you want)

 

Monday:

Chest Width & calves

Bench Press: 5 sets of 12 (pyramid up)

Incline bench: 3 sets of 12

Dips: 3 sets to failure

Calf raises 5×15 straight leg

Calf raises 5×15 bent leg

 

Tuesday:

Abs and Back

5 sets of crunches with a plate behind your head to failure. Do not lift up into a situp or it becomes a hip flexor exercise.

3 sets side crunches each side

Deadlift: 4 sets: 10,6,4,2 reps (pyramid up in weight)

Chin ups: 50 reps (break it up as much as you want)

Bent over dumbbell row: 3 sets fail on each side (around 8-12 reps)

 

Wednesday:

Shoulders & arms

Clean and press: 5×12 sets (use traps, not legs to lift)

Front delt raises 4×12

Side delt raises 4×12

Rear delt raises (very light) 3×8

Superset close pushups (make a diamond on the floor with your hands) with barbell bicep curls (against a wall)

5 sets of 8-12

superset: tricep rope extensions and dumbbell bicep curls: 5×12

 

Thursday:

Chest thickness and back thickness

One giant superset that goes like this:

Incline dumbbell press: 40 reps (10kg)

Bent right over row: 40 reps (10kg)

Incline dumbbell press: 30 reps (15kg)

Bent right over row: 30 reps (15kg)

20 reps (25kg), 10 reps (35kg), 5 reps (40kg), 5 reps (40kg).

Have a bit of a break and then reverse the pyramid with flat dumbbell press and bent over rows (on the bench) challenge is to use the same weights on the way down.

 

Friday: comfort zone training in the morning (no weights)

Saturday: complete rest

 

Keep going forever.

 

take regular photos – you’ll get to a point where you have achieved, then look at a photo and see how much further you can go.

 

You can’t build one house and retire, believing you’re a builder. You have to keep building houses every single week for the rest of your life. Fitness is the same. You have to keep doing fitness things every single week for the rest of your life to be fit. Not just a 12 week challenge or a 2 week diet. If you are doing those, make them part of your long-term plan – please think about what you are going to do next.

Your kids are watching.

If you have kids, remember that they learn their habits from you. If you’re smashing pies and drinking a six pack every night, they will do the same when they grow up. Except that they will do it with pride because they are “being like dad was.”

If you take control of your health and fitness, they will try to be like you when they’re older. Once again they will do it with a sense of pride, because they will do it with the memory of you firmly in their minds.

 

 

Sharny Kieser along with husband Julius have authored 13 books on fitness including the worldwide bestsellers FITlosophy 1&2, Healthy Junk, Fit, Healthy Happy Kids and Fit, Healthy, Happy Mum. They have 5 children and live on the Sunshine Coast in Australia.

Why (and when) you should stop Crossfit and Paleo

Alright Crossfitters and Paleo aficionados, get your pitchforks out!

I have seen way too many people over the last few years destroyed by Crossfit and Paleo.  The typical story goes like this:

“Been doing Crossfit for a year or more, eating Paleo and the results that were awesome to start off with, have tapered to minimal, my workouts are suffering, I used to think about it all day, and now I struggle to get the motivation to go.  I have a weekly appointment with my Osteo/physio for [joint issue of some kind].  I’m cheating on my diet, eating chocolate and carbs… I’m in a destructive phase and I just want to get back to where I was 3-6 months ago.”

Essentially, the lifetime of a Paleo Crossfit athlete goes like this:

MASSIVE BENEFIT –> BENEFIT –> NO BENEFIT/NO HARM –> HARM –> CATASTROPHIC FAILURE

What this means is that when you start Crossfit and Paleo, the benefits are massive, you get very fast physique changes, your energy levels go up, your general outlook on life is better, your health biomarkers all improve.  As time goes by, your results start to wane, steadily dropping until you get injured or earn yourself chronic fatigue, or start smashing chocolate bars.

Now, here’s the big question…

Is the initial benefit from Crossfit and/or Paleo because they are the greatest things in the world brah?  Or is it because Crossfit and/or Paleo are just better than what you were doing previously?

You see, Paleo may have saved your life and changed your health, but it’s just a very simple way of saying “Don’t eat shit, add fat to your diet and reduce your overall GI”  It may have saved your life, but why continue with it, if it begins to do you harm?  I’ll go into this a bit more later, but

what I propose is:

  • athletes who no longer benefit from Crossfit, give it a rest for at least 6 months.
  • Change from Paleo to a balanced diet
  • Go one step further and balance your macros

Let’s get into the why…

Shocking the system is what created results initially, but what if you’re now used to crossfit/met con as a singular training modality?  Pretty soon, you’re going to be bored of it. Shocking the system with crossfit every day will make you numb to the effects and is hell on your endocrine system.

Let’s get one thing abundantly clear, Crossfit is not a training system.  Crossfit is a sport.  Any high intensity sport should have a season.  The demands on a serious crossfitter’s body are similar to that of a Rugby player.  Just like training for Rugby, training for Crossfit should be periodised.  And if you’re a middle aged sedentary person, exercise as much caution starting Crossfit as you would starting Rugby.

Periodisation is in short, the balance of intensity and duration, making sure recovery is included (rest weeks, slow weeks).  There is a lot more to periodisation than this, but if you think of cycling your training between 4 weeks of strength, 4 weeks of power, 4 weeks of endurance, then within each 4 week cycle, you balance intensity with recovery, you’d be pretty close to the mark.

The temptation with Crossfit is to go all out every single time or you’re just not doing enough.  Many Crossfit coaches tell me that they desperately want to cycle, and even go through the process of creating macro and micro cycles for their box, but the pressure from their clients means that they get pushed back to met-con and oly lifting.

When you’re used to the thrill of going all out, a rest day seems like the coach is being lazy.  Too often, the uneducated “community” demands through their purse strings things a coach just doesn’t want to do.  This is the problem with the “community,” nobody wants to be left behind.

But, your body doesn’t give a shit about how great the community is, how cheap the fees are or your place on the leaderboard.  Once your body starts to become chronically tired, and workouts become really poor, and injuries start to occur, it means your body is telling you to slow down. You can’t red line your body all year round.

For the girls:

Olympic lifting will make your shoulders, traps, forearms, thighs, upper back and bum big and powerful. Have a look at the top crossfit and Olympic lifting female athletes on google and you’ll see what constant oly lifting will do for your physique. It’s also a good idea to look at some photos of yourself when you started (or 3-6 months in when the results were great) and compare your physique. Where has the growth occured? If the growth continues, will I like it?

Below is a photo of the top crossfit female athletes at the international crossfit games.  Note the quad, glute and trap development the introduction of excessive Oly lifting has created.

worlds best crossfit females

 

If you have injuries:

Explosive high rep exercise is not conducive to repair. I really think you should, for 6 months, do a strength training program to allow the body and the time to recover. I’d go as far as to say that if you do happen to do any cardio, it is for the joy of it, not forced. This may sound counterintuitive, but if you are doing a strength (controlled weight training) program, you will be keeping your cardiovascular efficiency quite high.  Doing a split program with plenty of rest will ensure time for tendons and ligaments to strengthen, muscles to repair and develop, mind-muscle connection to improve, range of motion to improve, midline stability to improve, and a balanced power curve.

The same goes for Paleo

It worked well initially, I’m sure, but increasing fats too much, while reducing carbs is not conducive to long term athlete development. I’m not saying Paleo is bad, what I’m saying is that it’s a concept, and a concept can be manipulated. I worry about people having too much fat in their diets, which is the exact same thing paleo is trying to mitigate – too much of something in the diet (in their case, sugar). Now, paleo people are eating way too much fat.

When you overconsume a certain macronutrient chronically over time, the one that is lacking will become more and more agitated and your body will find a way to get it. In this case, carbs.  You’re either going to get your carbs from junk, or you’re going to get them from veggies.

Conclusion:

If you’re a Paleo Crossfitter, there will come a time that you just need to change to a strength training program and a balanced, whole foods diet that is mathematical, not conceptual.  You can still stay within the realms of Paleo, but certainly not allowing the free-for-all on fat consumption.

Measure your calories, measure your macros.  Make sure that one isn’t remarkably higher than any other.  Remember that there are 9 calories in a gram of fat, but only 4 in a gram of carbs or protein.

 

Next season, when your body is repaired and stronger, go back to Crossfit if it is what you think you will enjoy.  Remember, you only live once, don’t play a particular sport because you have to, do it because you want to.  Find something you love to do and change it when you get bored of it.  The same goes for exercise.

 

Julius

PS, before you start defending Crossfit or Paleo, just remember that you are not Crossfit or Paleo, you are you, and these are tools you’ve used.

Also, before you start slamming Crossfit, remember that the coaches actually want to help, they want you to be great athletes and achieve your dreams.  Why on earth would someone own a business with such low income.  Crossfit coaches are great people and some of the most knowledgeable fitness coaches around and I’m sure if you asked them, they would fully support you and in fact encourage you to join a gym as well.  Being stronger and more injury resistant will make your lifetime value as a client far better.

RELATED: Customised Meal Plans

So, what do you think?