Each month, bestfit’s fitness expert brendan chaplin will attempt to pass on some vital tips and hints to improve your training. this month: the warm-up
Raise Your Pulse
Do 3-5 minutes steady jog, bike or skipping to get the blood flowing.
Get the key muscles working with glute bridges, shoulder and scapular exercises, plus hip flexors and any other key areas that you need for the session to follow.
Think about what you are doing in the session to follow. Then mobilise those areas. So, a weightlifting session, for example, will need some squats and hinges, some single leg and upper body mobility.
Get some explosive exercises in at the end of the warm-up to get those muscles firing. Some jumps, sprints, med ball throws etc.
Start with the end in mind
You need to know what you’re doing in your main session before you design your warm-up. So think this through carefully.
coomber will explain some of the key words and phrases you might have heard, but not necessarily understood. to get us started: gluten free
Gluten free has become popular due to the paleo and primal diet movements. Gluten is a protein found in grain-based foods such as bread, pasta, cereals and flours. It’s actually quite hard to avoid, it’s in a large amount of packaged foods, and forms the bulk of a large number of peoples diets (think sandwiches, cereal and chicken pasta and that’s a lot of gluten).
But with a health-focused movement many people have come to realise that gluten might not have been an ideal food choice for them, and thus have chosen to remove gluten from their diets to prevent some of the symptoms they have. Some of the primary issues people report are bloating, water retention, gas, lethargy, a lack of concentration and impaired performance. Whether gluten is ‘bad’ is yet to be shown, as with anything in your diet you should test to see if it’s a problem. A simple way to do this is to remove gluten completely from your diet for ten days, then have a gluten-based meal and see if it brings back your symptoms, only then might you know if gluten is something you should consider avoiding
Five essentials for your cupboard
Ensure your cupboards are rammed with a variety of spices to ensure you can keep all those one-ingredient foods flavoursome and interesting. Learn how to use them by picking up a few essential cook books, or sift around online to find the recipes of others and how they use spices to best effect.
My preferred chosen fat to cook with. With a high smoke point, this is the ideal healthy fat too cook eggs, meat, vegetables or whatever else you choose. High in medium chain triglycerides and antiparasitic compounds, it’s one of the good guys when it comes to healthy fats. And yes, if you do buy some it is meant to be solid at room temperature.
I often find that trying to keep on top of your protein intake can sometimes catch you buy surprise. You swear you had another pack of chicken breasts in the freezer to defrost for tomorrow’s meals only to find nothing there. Tinned fish such as tuna, sardines and mackerel can all be healthy lifesavers to have stored away in the cupboard.
Currently making a return on the ‘healthy snack’ isle of shops, popcorn can be a great low-calorie snack. Bag yourself some raw corn kernels and enjoy making up random concoctions and recipes at home for an interesting dessert, snack, or as I like, post workout. You can easily control what goes into the recipe and you can get as creative as you like with adding flavours.
Food fat sources can often be a bit mundane, so try nuts, avocados, oils on salads and olives. Monounsaturated fats are not consumed enough by most people and olives are an easy way to do this. Because large jars of them can often be inconvenient, try buying the single-serving pouches from the supermarket to add to your meals. Tasty, convenient and damn healthy.