Training vs. Testing


When to train and when to test. Do NOT get them mistaken for each other.

TRAINING
Training should take up about 90% of your workout time. Training should be something that feels sustainable and will last over long periods of time. You ever heard the term life is a marathon, not sprint? Well that is how you should treat your training routine... with a long term approach. A typical training workout might look something like this:

A1. KB Squat 10, 8, 8, 8 @ 80% effort rest 1 min
A2. Pullups 8-10 x 4 work up to heavy but not max rest 2 min
B1. SL Deadlifts 8/side x 3 moderate weight, focus on technique rest 1 min
B2. Seated DB Shoulder Press 8-10 x 3 focus on control during eccentric rest 2 min
+
20 min incline walk @ sustainable pace ~ 70% of max heart rate

TESTING
The best time to test is in the very beginning of a new program so that you can have baseline numbers to work off of. Set your goals in place and choose tests that best fit that. Testing is really meant to track progression and that's why we workout in the first place, to see progress. For a novice, testing can and should be more frequent because you will see progression faster whereas someone more advance should test less often to give themselves time to make improvements over a longer time frame and to allow the central nervous system to recover. Tests should be ALL OUT EFFORTS for best accuracy in tracking progression. Here's an example of testing for a hockey player:



Establish an 8 RM loaded SL RFESS (rear foot elevated split squat) record weight for each leg
1 Arm Standing strict shoulder press - find a 6 RM
Max Reps Pullups
1 RM Deadlift
Find Max Watts in 15 sec on Airdyne/Assault Bike - ALL OUT
90 sec Airdyne/Assault bike ALL OUT max Calories, rest 90 sec x 2 (difference between first and second effort) - record recovery HRThis may change based on individual but is just a general look at how you would test regarding your sport.

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Contact Bobby directly (508) 364-6534

Understanding Movement 

When programming strength training for individuals I always start with their goals, then their priorities (considering their strengths/weaknesses, corrective exercise, needed mobility drills, etc...) and then break it down into 4 movement patterns: Upper Body Pull, Lower Body Push, Upper Body Push, Lower Body Pull. These are all basic, fundamental movements we perform on a daily basis in life which means we are training FUNCTIONALLY. We want to take whatever it is we do in the gym and bring it to the real world. And this is why we train in the first place - to better our lives. 

Upper Pull/Lower Push/Upper Push/Lower Pull
These basic human movements are essential to our lives and there is a bit of magic when we can combine them correctly. The combo of UP/LP/UP/LP creates excellent balance and a global, overall, simple approach to training functionally. Here's an example of what a workout would look like: 

BASIC
A1. Inverted Rows (TRX Rows) x 10 (Upper Pull)
A2. KB Squat x 10 (Lower Push)
A3. Pushups x 10 (Upper Push)
A4. KB Deadlifts x 10 (Lower Pull) 
Repeat this workout for 20 min (not rushed) for a great BASIC overall strength program.

ADVANCED
A1. Strict Pullups x 8-10 (Upper Pull)
A2. DB Walking Lunges x 20 (Lower Push)
A3. DB Bench Press x 8-10 (Upper Push)
A4. KB Swings x 12-15 (Lower Pull)
Repeat this for 20-30 min a bit faster pace for a more ADVANCED workout.

There's several varieties of each movement so it's always good to combine different exercises while still keeping the basic formula of UP/LP/UP/LP.


If your interested in individual program design please contact us for more info on how to get started!

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How Much should you eat?

I very rarely make the suggestion to any of my clients to count calories. Unless you are competing in something like a body building contest or you are a wrestler or fighter that needs to make weight, calorie counting is an unneeded stress. First lets define what calories are... without getting too detailed, quite simply calories are energy. We eat to support the function of our day. If you are someone that is sedentary and uses very little energy throughout the day then you should eat based on that. If you are a high level athlete, say a swimmer (the other extreme side of the spectrum), then you must eat to support your lifestyle. Michael Phelps is known to eat up to 4,000 calories per day! But, for the general population, we just don't need that. If you find that you are gaining unwanted weight, chances are you are eating more than your function level on a recurring, daily basis.   

Not All Calories are the Same
The other reason I don't like the idea of counting calories is because not all calories are the same. 50 calories of swedish fish does NOT equal 50 calories of avocado. You'll hear me talk a lot about Food Quality and this is one of the reasons why. Someone who eats 2,500 calories of junk will not look or feel like someone who eats 2,500 calories clean, green and mean! I have all my clients start a food log upon starting their program with me. This gives great insight to both myself and the client about what can be altered or swapped without making any huge, overwhelming changes. It also creates a ton of awareness to the individual on how they feel after each meal and how to correct it moving forward. A simple smiley face: :)   :|   :(  next to each meal will provide you with something to look back on and is part of the learning process in how you felt after each meal. This is also a great way to see if you might be intolerant to certain foods that you may not have been aware of. 

Sacrificing Health for Performance
If your goal is to compete in something and to be the best at a very high level then you push the limits on everything. Your training is extremely demanding and rigorous and your diet must support the demands. Often times supplements are taken to fill in the voids that food just can't and your health takes a bit of a risk. As you can see in the Michael Phelps article, he eats just about anything he can good or bad to just support his training. But, for the individuals just training for life, there is no need to take extreme measures with diet or supplements. Try and think quality over quantity, eating to support function, eating to support goals, long term over short term. 

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By Bobby Scott 

Fitness Director 

MOTIVATION

I don't do a whole lot of "motivational" stuff or write about it really ever and I guess that's because I've always been someone that "leads by example" and just puts my head down and goes to work. I hardly ever complain about it and quite frankly it's just in my DNA to work hard at something if I expect to be successful at it. I never needed the RAH-RAH! person screaming in my ear, I would just take whatever someone offered me, learn from them and execute it. I've been lucky that I have such amazing, devoted, energetic clients that I can work with on a daily basis. It makes my job a lot easier and really fun!

Over the years, however, I have had my share of clients that just couldn't find the will or desire to accomplish the goals they had set for themselves. I provide them with the tools, guidance and plan to follow but for some reason they just can't build up the "want" to execute the plan on a consistent basis. The training sessions then become more like "babysitting" and the motivation is more like "begging" which I am very much done with. This obviously leads to an unsuccessful result. It's frustrating for me as their coach when I see a client who has everything in front of them and all the tools available to accomplish their goals but lacks the motivation to do so. So what is this roadblock that is holding them back from finding success? Most likely there is some sort of emotional blockage that won't allow them to commit or build up the desire to see it through and maybe something traumatic has happened at some point in their life that makes this just seem too overwhelming? Either way, I never experienced what they did and we all have our own very unique journeys so I certainly never pass judgement.

Recently, I have reconstructed my consultation/assessment process when meeting someone for the first time. I now know that I need to dig deep to really understand each person individually. What use to be a 10 min conversation before training someone is now a 30-60+ minute conversation that provides me with great insight into the person I will be coaching to their ultimate success. Like I stated earlier, I am not the big talker motivation type, but here are a few things you can always fall back on when trying to dig up some motivation:

1. Always go back to the WHY
Why are you doing this in the first place? Did you set a goal of losing 50lbs because you feel as though your health is at risk? Good enough reason! Set a goal, but always ask yourself WHY and keep that answer with you forever during the process.

2. Seek Help
Maybe you just don't have the knowledge to execute your plan to reach your desired goals? Find someone that will put the time and effort into you that you can count on to provide you with the path to success. And do your research, don't just settle on someone because they proclaim to know everything.

3. Prioritize your Day
Is your health the most important thing to you? If so, I would begin your day with your workout. Don't let it slip late into the day where who knows what will come up. Get it done first thing because it's the most important thing to you.

4. Have Fun
Nothing is really motivating if it's not fun. Find some sort of fitness routine that is fun for you. Maybe you love to be outdoors? That's great because there is so much in nature that you can do for fitness!

If you need a plan or some reasons for motivation, let me know. I'd be happy to lay out the template for success!

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Listing Priorities and Executing Them


When I have a first time client walk through the doors, the assessment and evaluation process starts right away. The is the first stage in developing a plan specific for this individual so when probing and asking questions it's best when I have someone that is completely open and honest about what they want to achieve and getting their priorities in line so that their program can be laid out in a simple format. We can then see what things will look like in a week, a month and a year. Based on their body measurements and goals, we have a pretty good idea already what type of training will be required. To get more detailed and dig a little deeper relative to goals it is important to watch you move. During the movement analysis, I look for strengths and weaknesses, range of motion imbalances and your balance of energy systems. Based on the info gathered, your program will then have a certain number of priorities listed.

For Example:
Here's an avatar of a client:

  • middle aged female
  • 5'5", 155lbs
  • novice fitness level
  • goal of losing fat
  • RT leg weaker than LT leg
  • Weak core relative to others like her
  • High resting HR
  • struggled on 30/30 x 3 airdyne test.


Executing Priorities

  • Since the goal is fat loss and she's a novice, we then know that we need to build muscle and put her on a strength program.
  • Since the Resting HR is high and she struggled on the airdyne test, we know that we need to add some long/easy (very easy) aerobic days into her weekly template to build an aerobic foundation.
  • Because we found that she has a strength imbalance in legs, we need to place single leg strength exercises at the beginning of every strength day.
  • And, since her RT leg is weaker, she must start all single leg exercises on the right side so that side gets more attention and focus.
  • Also at the top of the list in each strength program would be core strength exercises so that we can find better balance. This can be tested and retested frequently to make sure there is progression being made.


Now this is just one example of a "made up" person so there may be much more detail depending on who it is and what they want to accomplish. When executing your program, always best to place things in order of most importance, both goals and correcting physical imbalances.

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Ladies and Gentlemen, The Turkish Get Up


One of my favorite movements but definitely one of the most complex. Do NOT try this at home! Probably best to have instruction first before attempting the TGU or at least without weight. Excellent movement for core strength, stability in shoulders and hips, and very much a neurological challenging exercise as well.


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Client Spotlight - Corrine Brandi

Corrine came to me back in December of 2014 looking to add muscle to her very long, lean frame. Following our assessment, I immediately put her on a highly strength focused program with very easy aerobic work individualized specific to what she wanted to achieve. She strength trains 2-3 times per week and her aerobic work is no more than a daily casual walk with her dogs. As Corrine has become more consistent over time, her results have been remarkable. She's gained nearly 10lbs of muscle and 14lbs overall. She went from barely being able to perform step ups on a 6" box to now performing loaded step ups on a 12" box. She went from bench pressing a 15lb bar for 8 reps max to benching the 45lb bar for an easy 8 reps. It goes to show you that simply following your plan consistently will lead to great results.

Here's a Q&A with Corrine...

Give us a brief description of who you are and what you are training for…
I'm a single Mom, professional network marketer and health nut.  My goal in training is to build muscle and gain strength.  As I get older it becomes more and more important to age successfully.  Without movement that is not possible. Of course I want to look and feel great, and my priority is in living healthy and dying healthy.

What was your life and training program like before Osterville Fitness?
Before Osterville Fitness I tried other approaches to develop a fitness routine.  A few years ago I had a coach come to my house, I've bought numerous fitness DVDs to self motivate, and I hired a personal trainer for about six months.  The prior personal trainer helped me some, but I was uncomfortable with the nutritional viewpoints he shared and he was not so healthy himself.  Fit for sure, but not health... I align with people that 'walk their talk'.

How has your training impacted your life?
My training has made me feel younger and more confident in my body.  I started at a Size 2 and am still a Size 2, yet everything fits differently.  I was lying on my back on the chiropractor's table about 4 months into my training and I noticed that my hips were raised and the cushion beneath me felt different.  I quickly realized that it was the feeling of lying on a cushion of muscle instead of just bone, lol.  In that time I gained 9.8 pounds of muscle.  It feel great.

Do you feel as though you are achieving the goals you set for yourself?
I am achieving the goals I set.  So much so that I now have my two teenage daughters doing the small group trainings twice a week.  The investment in my kids and the value they are receiving by being coached is tremendous.  Both girls are happier, slimming out and feeling good about their strength and body, beyond makeup and clothes.

Are you training in a group, following an individualized program design or private coaching 1 on 1? And what does this entail?
I lead a varied and international life.  I'm in private 1-1 coaching as this is what seems to work best for me.  My trainer keeps me accountable to do what I said I wanted to do.  At some point when I develop the discipline of working out on my own I can move to individualized programming which Osterville Fitness offers that's more economical.  Right now, what I'm doing is working and gets me to show up and get it done.  I thoroughly enjoy my time with my coach, Bobby.  Once is a while I'll join my daughters' session, or they will join my private coaching, OF has been very accommodating and flexible. 

Outside of training are you being coached in other areas or having open conversations regarding: life, nutrition, sleep, recovery, etc…?
Beyond just telling me how many reps to do and how much weight to lift, Bobby and I discuss any and all aspects of health.  One of the things that drew me to Bobby is his knowledge of nutrition, as well as the body itself.  Bobby and I align on the importance of alkalizing the body and promoting blood flow.  He is continually researching and learning about leading edge research into fitness and health such as amazing benefits of interval training.

Do you feel as though you are committed long term and if so, why?
My family has found the gym we will work with long term.  The staff is outstanding, the venue is peaceful and beautiful and the community is alive.  There are students from Cape Cod Academy and men and women in their 70s and 80s who look great and have been working out there for 20 years, to people just starting out and perhaps injured and recovering.  It's a real place with real people.  I'm comfortable there and my teenage daughter are comfortable there, that's pretty impressive.

Would you suggest another person train with a coach @ Osterville Fitness? And what would they get out of it?
Whatever someone is trying to achieve, the trainers at Osterville Fitness are on your side.  They are partners in our commitments for our health and fitness.   Anyone willing to work and wanting a partner in achieving their goals would find a home at this gym.

Interested in individualized program design and coaching?Contact us to learn more...

What's your journey?