In the last 15 weeks I have embarked on a fitness program that is totally different to what I thought it would be. It has not only tested me physically and mentally but it also gave me the chance to train with other people and show them that they can push themselves beyond what they think is possible.
I feel like my whole life I have always been determined to be the best version of myself however I have not always had the focus to see things through. I feel like I will always be chasing my demons away, I will always be the fat kid in my mind. I will always be trying to push myself away from the days of cheeseburgers and cigarettes.
Over the last few days I have been asked a lot of questions about my “WHY”. Why have I put myself through a program that is 15 weeks long? Why have I decided to push my limits? Why did I decide on the Freeletics APP program instead of creating my own?
The answer is simple. I am always looking for new ways to challenge myself, to learn about myself and to be able to share that journey with others. (And if I am being honest writing my own program would have taken a lot of my time which I wanted to use for other things.)
My point being, whether you buy an online program or get 1-2-1 personal training it is up to YOU to make the commitments, to show up each day and to stick through the hard times. Push past your limits, YOU are the only one who can break them! There is only so much help people can give you before you have to take care of things yourself.
There have been multiple times over the last few weeks where I thought about stopping halfway through a workout and just going to bed. In fact a couple of weeks ago I had a huge double session in the plan. I started work at 6am, worked until 3pm, ate food and needed to be at a friends house for 5pm. I was tired, I was still hungry and was in no way ready for a crazy workout. This was the session I faced:
50 push ups
20 sit ups
By the time I had to leave for my friends house I still had the final 200 burpees to do. I was so tired that I wrote it off in my mind, “yeah, I’ll just do them tomorrow."
I got home and looked outside to see the sun setting, the garden was dry and I realised that there was no such thing as procrastination. It had to be done. I set a personal best that evening for 100 burpees in a row. (And that’s when I ruined the lawn.)
I’m not saying this to boast, I’m simply saying that we are far more capable than we give ourselves credit for.
Then there is the vanity side of things, who doesn’t want a six pack? I’m not going to lie that the thought of being ‘ripped’ or ‘shredded’ is appealing to me, but I also realise that’s not where life is won. Life is won when you understand that the legacy you leave behind is more important than anything else. Did you contribute to making the world a better place?
My mission statement for myself reads like this:
“To inject positivity into people’s lives and make the world a happier healthier place."
Some days I fail miserably at it, others I achieve it. And what I hope is that by sharing my journey with you I can inspire you to keep going, to be healthy, to live a happy life!
Now, enough of my rambling, if you’d like to see the results of the 15 weeks then check out the images below in the slide show, with the stats! If you have any questions about the process, my diet and anything in between then please send me an email through the contact form below and I’d be happy to help.
Have an awesome week ahead!
Don’t forget to Stay Strong and Keep Moving!
Last week Friday I wrote about the balance in our lives; I shared a video with you about how to wind down after a long day. I also said at the end of the post that I would go for a whole week without my phone. So, I decided that next week is the week to do it and I have put together some ground rules for week itself...
(If you want to skip to the video at the end of the post I talk you through a little bit of what I am writing about here).
This might be a highly ambitious week, the main thing I want to understand is the impact that my device has had on my life. I can quite honestly say that if I wake up in the middle of the night I’ll reach for my phone to see the time, then if I have a notification….. Well, it goes down hill from there, next thing I have been browsing Facebook for 20 minutes in the middle of the night.
Granted back in 2012/13 I would have woken up and spent 20 minutes having a cigarette and a can of coke. So I feel I have made progress, but still, there has to be a better way! I will do a short video log of each day’s results and how I feel, so stay tuned. Normal blog posts will go up on Monday and Friday. Monday being the 15 week big reveal! Obviously I won’t be out of contact for the whole week as I will have an hour of computer time every day.
I truly believe that it is a great thing to have so much technology around us, helping us, entertaining us. I’d just like us all to be mindful of the affects that these advances have on our lifestyles. In order to be mindful it is imperative that I understand how exactly it is affecting me.
Wish me luck and if you'd like to share your thoughts, or if you have any questions then please pop a comment below.
Have a great weekend! Stay Strong and Keep Moving!
Over the last few weeks I have been running several fitness classes, in every class I have tried to get each person to focus on two simple things.
There are a multitude of reasons for this which I’ll get into in a little bit. For now i’ll tell you a little story about the picture below.
I have always had a postural issues with my back, the technical term is hyper-kyphosis, it is something that I am extremely conscious about and I have not really covered in the blog so far. I believe that this posture stems from a lot of things, but probably compounded through golf and incorrect training methods over the years. I feel like I make an interesting case study for myself as I get to try techniques an learn a lot along the path of fixing myself.
For a long time, actually up until last year really I was paranoid about wearing any kind of T-Shirt or vest, I hated the way they felt and the fact that my back was noticeably round when wearing them. I always preferred wearing a polo shirt or golfing top because the collar just felt safer. This again was compounded by the psychological battering I took having the nickname Quasimodo growing up. There were plenty of other nicknames too but we’ll save those for another time.
I decided that the only way forward was to face my demons full on, tackle the postural issue once and for all. I got referred through my doctor to a physiotherapist about 2 years ago. She was not very helpful because I wasn’t actually in any pain and so I was told to pursue any issues privately. I decided to go and see a chiropractor who told me I was all bent out of shape.
Lots of money later I had a better understanding of how deep my pockets were and also the techniques I could use to strengthen my back. Slowly but surely with the right techniques I was able to get the result that you have seen in the picture above. A better looking posture over the golf ball for one, but a better posture in general.
So this leads me back to the start of the blog post:
You can tell a lot about a person through their posture, not just about their fitness level or their structural make up, but about the way their mind works too.
With that said there is a whole lot more to the holistic benefit of good posture that goes beyond fitness and into every day life. If you’d like to know more about this then put some feedback into the form below and I will contact you to set up a chat. In the mean time I hope that this information has been helpful.
Have a great weekend ahead!
Stay Strong and Keep Moving!
In March 2015 I made a video and put it up on YouTube - I called it Confidence and Calisthenics… Not a bad video if you ask me, I had no script, I stood in front of a camera and mumbled and jumbled my way through my points. I’d like to think that I have matured a bit since then, kind of like a fine wine… I remember making that video thinking, “Man, I’m a badass! I did clapping press ups and EVERYTHAAAAANG!”
Truth be told, if you compare that video to other fitness professionals out there you might chuckle to yourself. I was however the fittest I have ever been at that stage and the video is just a milestone in my journey. I started looking back over my old videos, mostly to cringe at my meekness, but to try and see how freely I was moving my body. The point I came to in the original video (you can view it here) is that you should never stop striving to be the best you that you can be. You should embrace the journey and believe in yourself.
It is great to set goals and get going in a direction for change, but understand that goals change, life moves and flows and I found that I had to be open to that. When I finished my first 90 day program I realised that my goals had shifted, fitness had become a journey not a destination.
Too many people join a gym or start a home workout DVD with the idea of getting to a finishing point. What I came to realise, and what I hope I can share with you, is that you don’t need to draw a line in the sand to stop at when you’ve got the whole beach to enjoy!
Everything starts with that little bit of confidence though, that little bit of self belief that says, ‘today I am going to do something positive.’ My confidence took a huge leap forward when I decided that I was going to keep striving for FREEDOM OF MOVEMENT for my body. It is the foundation of all my sessions with all my clients.
With that said, I have spliced together a video below of my progression over a year. Sure some of the moves are different, but it is quite crazy to see the freedom I have with my body now. I haven’t made this video to be boastful, I made it with the intention of sharing my journey to show what is possible if you just have a little faith in yourself and you keep working on your journey to the strongest you.
No matter what you are going through right now, just put one foot in front of the other and keep believing in yourself because your journey will turn out to be magical!
STAY STRONG and KEEP MOVING!
Hello! And welcome back to Raw Motion Fitness! It has been an absolutely awesome few weeks since I last wrote, with the website going through some immense changes! The reason that I wanted the site to have an upgrade is because it needed to evolve, it needed to be better, faster and more professional than before.
My journey into fitness has been amazing, filled with love and support from all corners of this wonderful planet and I hope that I can continue to share messages of encouragement and insight with you in the weeks, months and years to come. I truly believe that it is only with the support of our family and friends that we can rise to be the best versions of ourselves, and with your support we can make this site AWESOME!
Everybody is inherently working towards something in their lives and more often than not we are working towards material gains; a new job, more money, a nice car, a new house… It is very rare that you sit back and take time to really get to know yourself in this fast paced world. I truly believe that this disconnect from ourselves is what is leading to most of the uncomfortable lifestyles and mismatched diseases that we see around us today. I’m not for one second suggesting that we give up on material possessions and go live in the woods with the bears; I am saying though, that we need to be mindful of ourselves. Be mindful of the fact that life is precious.
The re-launch of the website has been done as I am extending my reach and offering personal training in an online capacity to those around the world. I am offering the in-depth help, support and guidance that gets people back on track and feeling better. I know what it is like to be down and out; I know what it takes to change habits and develop a more positive outlook in life. It takes support and drive in the right direction. We need to be mindful that investing in our health and well being is what will lead us to having a long and happy life. We need to be mindful that working ourselves silly each and every week is not what our bodies have evolved to do. Balance is the key and that is what I work with each client to develop.
The weekly blog posts will continue as they have for the last year and I have some wonderfully motivational posts lined up. So if you are ready to continue the awesome journey then whack your e-mail address into the form below this post and you’ll get a free copy of my recipe book that I have been working on!
On a final note, over the last week we lost a family member, my Uncle Michael, a wonderful man who would do anything for anyone and someone who truly lived his life to it’s full. I would like to dedicate this launch today to him, he lived a life with the energy, enthusiasm and positivity that befits Raw Motion Fitness and I hope that my work over the coming years through this website will honour his memory.
Have a wonderful week ahead!
Stay Strong and Keep Moving
I have a question for you this fine Friday! Have you ever met a person who is a walking enthusiast that is really overweight? I have known a few really avid walkers in my time and they always seem to be pretty fit and in good health.
The reason I ask that question is because I believe that walking is one of the most overlooked forms of exercise when it comes to making a lifestyle change. Sure, running tends to be one of the most popular 'goto' exercises for those who want to lose weight; and studies by the institute of people who study stuff have said that running is more efficient at reducing BMI, as we expend more energy. (Who would've thought? :-) )
I think that we always have to take into consideration that not everyone can run, or jog, I certainly couldn't run when I was starting out, in fact even when I did start running to lose weight I got injured because I was probably too heavy to do it. I truly believe that it is the most under-utilised forms of exercise. Take for instance yesterday, I walked 6.15 kilometres around the gym as well as on a nice scenic walk down a footpath. If you combine the walking my workout of 400 calories then yesterday's calorie burn was 700 calories. Using my very complicated mathematical equation that is a good 300 calories burned through walking.
Granted not everyone thinks that they have the time to walk 6.15 kilometres a day, but think about the nature that you could be missing out on.We all have a tendency - especially in the UK - to look outside and think about how green and beautiful the grass is somewhere else in the world; meanwhile there is natural beauty all around us, we just have look for it.
When I hear someone say that they want to lose weight but don't know where to start my first reaction is to talk about healthy fresh nutrient dense food. My second reaction is to recommend developing a habit of walking every day; and if the goal is not to lose weight but feel better my ingredients remain the same.
If you don't believe that you'll see results in how you feel then try it for a week, put one foot in front of the other and let them lead you away from the craziness of the world for 30 minutes to an hour a day. Not only will you discover some really awesome places, but you might just discover something about yourself along the way!
Have a great weekend ahead!
Stay Strong and Keep Walking!
I was supposed to be running with the 401 Marathon Crowd today in Stratford Upon Avon, I was then going to come home and put together an amazing little photo blog story to share with you. Unfortunately I ended up in a doctor's surgery, waiting to be seen and told to rest as much as possible over the next three days to get my voice back. There I was thinking I'd just left it behind on a bus, turns out some guy called Larryn Gytis stole it. (That was my attempt at a joke.) So this post might be slightly more somber post than initially intended....
We all have those moments in life that we wish we could take back, sometimes they keep us awake at night lying in bed wondering WHY OH WHY!!? One of my most haunting decisions was starting smoking - even though I quit in 2013 I have a recurring dream that involves me chain smoking again; I normally wake up and feel really guilty.
It is safe to say that every year since starting smoking to where I am today I have had some form of cough or chest issue. I even remember once, back in 2013 - I had a chest X-Ray because I couldn't breathe very easily and woke up choking one night - I was pooping myself waiting on the results as I thought that there would be news about me having cancer.
So far I have survived, minus a lot of money and a distinct loss of pride in myself for being so silly with the habit in the first place. The thing that sits badly with me the most though is not the money or the pride, it is the time that I wasted on the habit itself; the time I am wasting now by having weaker lungs. Sure we do all get sick sometimes, but I really do question how much of my sickness each year is down to smoking. Let's forget about statistics on how bad smoking is, let's forget about the cancer it causes and focus on TIME!
Time, to me, is our most valuable thing in the world so much so that we as a species have written books and made movies about it. There was that really rubbish one with Justin Timberlake called..... In Time. Quite an original name though, if you ask me. Writing this has got my mind thinking of that song by Rod Stewart where he sings, "I wish that I knew what I know now, when I was younger..."
I digress... My point is simple today, let's make good use of our time doing things that benefit our minds and bodies. Let us make good use of our time because one day we'll definitely be wanting more of it. This is the third post in which I have referenced a quote from the documentary called The Kids Menu - but it really sticks out;
"If we don't make time for health, we have to make time for sickness." - Kate Corcoran
Go out there, be healthy and have a great weekend, and if you are looking to quit smoking, or have someone who you think would benefit from this post then contact me below, or share this post with them.
Stay Strong and Keep Moving!
Today I thought that the week should end well for everyone that comes in reading distance of this blog post. (You might even be reading this a year from now and hopefully it will help you refocus.) It is safe to say that no matter who we are, or where we are in life right now we have all faced some kind of hardship. Hardship may be self inflicted or just unfortunate, that doesn't make any form of hardship more superior to others.
I was in a very dark place in my mind a few years back, I couldn't see a future for myself, I kept waiting to my future to arrive in a package at the front door. Unfortunately Amazon don't deliver hopes and dreams, nevertheless I kept waiting for them to come and find me. Truth be told, you can't sit around and wait to get through the tough times, you have to pick yourself up and just try to make those small steps each day towards some form of betterment. It took me a long time to realise that, and I often think that the destination of wellness in my mind was so far away it distracted me from the amazing journey ahead.
That's why my slogan is STAY STRONG and KEEP MOVING and that is why I share my ramblings, because I believe that if there is a beacon out there then at least it might help to guide some people out of the hardships and into a better place.
I found my beacon in movement; being able to move with more purpose each day gave me the drive to pursue a healthier life, it brought back the hunger for me to be the best I can be. I don't want you to think that I share my story of weight-loss for the purpose of praise, far from it. I share it because I want you to see that I'm just a normal person who took a few steps in the right direction and kept moving. I have absolutely loved the journey so far, and you know what? I'm less concerned about the destination now than I have been in the past.
Moving with purpose gave me my life back, I hope you can always look to this blog for inspiration when times get tough! Here's a video to end the week, if you'd told me two years ago that I would be able to move as freely as I am in the video I would have laughed at you. It just goes to show that consistency and good work ethic towards your goals can pay off, now go out there and have fun over the long Easter weekend!
As promised for you lovely folks that read my blog posts I have compiled an outline of my seminar on Saturday! Can I get a 'WOOP WOOP?' Now I know that an in your mind you may have gone 'WOOP WOOP!' But research has shown that to make you smile, even if you are having a really terrible day, you NEED to say 'WOOP WOOP' really loud and do it three times in a row. Try it now, and I bet you'll smile! Don't worry I'll wait....
Anyhoo, I started the seminar off talking about the weight that I had lost, I spoke about the multiple times that I have lost weight in my life. If you're just joining the Raw Motion Fitness blog brigade then I highly recommend you check out my story here.
After the story about how I became a 22 stone (140 kilo) monster, I spoke about my strategy to overcome the mindset I was in. There were three things that I focused on and I have covered them before in previous blog posts.
That is the abbreviated version for you, I hope that some of it helped and hit home. Maybe you'll find it helpful for someone you know... Maybe it will plant a seed in your mind to help you towards tomorrow! Either way the fact that you have read this far is something I am very grateful for.
Have a great week ahead and don't forget to STAY STRONG and KEEP MOVING!
Howdy there and a big happy Friday to you!
I hope that you have had a fantastic week and that you have been moving with purpose this whole week. I wanted to close out the week with an announcement.... Insert drum roll here..... I will be holding a weight-loss seminar on Saturday the 19th of March at Virgin Active in Solihull! Is that a "Whoop Whoop" I hear?
My aim with the seminar is to reach as many people as possible and let them know that lifestyle changes don't have to be scary; that collectively we can make the world a happier and healthier place. It just takes one person to light the way and many more will follow!
Now I realise that this might not be ideal location for everyone that reads this blog, especially if you are reading this somewhere other than the UK. Have no fear, I will be doing a summary of the seminar in a separate blog post on the same day.
Have a great weekend ahead and if you are interested in coming to the seminar then please reach out and let me know, using the form below.
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Brendan is the owner and head trainer at Raw Motion Fitness.