...And an inspiring response from Rachel's friend:
Your specific weight/fitness/lifestyle related goals when you started:
When I started PT with Erika last year I was pretty sick of going to the gym 4 or 5 times a week and getting no results. All I did was cardio with very little resistance training, and although my diet was pretty clean I was eating a bit too much and getting nowhere (if anything I was putting weight on). I really wanted to tone up and improve my fitness but also improve the relationship with myself. I was bulimic when I was younger and so loving my body is something that I have never been particularly good at, I felt that I was at a time in my life that I needed to move past this and make some positive changes, both physically and mentally.
What have you achieved since starting your sessions with Erika?
Since I started with Erika I have seen a lot of physical changes, I've lost just over a stone, I'm stronger than I've ever been and I feel a lot more toned. But better than any physical change are the mental ones, I'm more positive about life in general, have a better relationship with food and am even learning to love my body, slowly but surely. The strength I have gained from Erika's training has also allowed me to progress in yoga, something which I love but have never had the strength, or confidence to improve in.
Your PT session experiences summarised:
Over the time I've been training with Erika I've learned so much!! Sessions are always varied and fun, pushing you beyond limits that you didn't even know you had! Erika's enthusiasm is also unreal, I feel completely supported and motivated not only during the sessions but also in-between times. Her advice goes beyond exercise and nutrition, even giving me fantastic advice on how to deal the writers block I had during my masters dissertation!!
Are you happy with your results?
How has Erika helped achieve your goals?
Through constant encouragement, motivation, and support. Varying classes, and keeping exercise fun at all times. Her love of fitness and life is contagious, I'm pretty sure that with Erika as your PT it would be pretty impossible not to reach your goals!
What do you still want to achieve regarding your weight/fitness/lifestyle?
I still want to tone up and gain strength- right now, more than anything else I'd love to be able to just one pull up! (That and hold a headstand for more than two seconds in yoga!).
Would you recommend Erika Helsinki as a PT to others? Why?
No doubt about it, she is the best PT I could have hoped for!!!
Any other comments?
Erika would do anything for her clients, a truly amazing PT. I could stop there but its more than that, she is also a wonderful person who genuinely cares about each and every one of her clients. There is no way I would ever have reached my goals without her and there are no words which express how grateful I am for her help and support!
Our first ever PT masterclass was held last Saturday by Erika Helsinki. We focused on working on people's technique on deadlifts. At the end of the hour-long masterclass people were beating their previous personal bests, although it's more of an educational session rather than a hardcore workout.
We were very impressed by the effort, enthusiasm and the great atmosphere throughout the session. More PT masterclasses to follow for sure (squats and bench press at least). Stay tuned by liking our Facebook page!
Once again, thanks for all attendees! Here are some pictures from the day.
Remember last week when I posted about Mel who'd lost 4 lb in her first week with me? Well now after 2 weeks she's lost another 3 lb!! Oh my fucking god!! You can totally see the difference as well - her face is thinner, stomach tighter and she's feeling full of energy...
WOOOOOOOOOOO!! Go Mel!!!
Yesterday in our PT session she estimated to be able to leg press between 36 and 52kg. I said bullshit. Apparently she'd managed the latter last week in the gym on her own, doing the program we'd designed for her.
I said she could do 90kg EASY. She wouldn't believe it. So I made her try.
Try harder than ever before at the gym.
Lifting weights and doing resistance training is all about psychology. People around the gym (particularly women) rarely try hard enough when it comes to resistance training.
You can never know how strong you REALLY are unless you push your boundaries.
Don't get comfortable. Comfortable = no results. Start trying. And I mean trying so hard your heart is racing and you're getting a proper sweat on. So hard you have to make awkward faces. So hard you can't breath quietly. That's when you start getting results.
So yeah, Mel pressed 107 kg on her third ever session, and upped her max by over 50%. That's what I call trying.
And that's why she'll end up with astonishing results. Go Mel!! Prouuuuuud!!
Happy week to all!
My new PT client Mel just lost 4 lb in her first week with me. That's a dramatic result. But now we've got work to do - and that's to focus on MAINTENANCE. There's no point in losing that much weight in a short space of time if we can't keep it off (I'm sure though, in her case, we can. You'd know why if you met her [I'm talking motivation and determination]).
THE PROBLEM: Although that's a great and motivating start for her, nowhere near all of that lost weight is fat. The majority of the weight loss will have been loss of fluids - and that's not REAL weight loss because it comes back on very easily. Some of the weight lost will most likely have come off her precious muscle tissue as well - and we certainly don't want that because muscle turns your body into a fat burning machine.
You see results like this all the time in weight loss clubs. In fact, this type of rapid weight loss gets rewarded -- and in my opinion that's WRONG. This way most people will initially be happy with the weight they've lost - and then struggle to keep it off. I'd say probably 95% people I've met who've been in these weight loss clubs have put the weight back on after they've stopped going to the weekly meetings. Sad, isn't it.
So... As harsh as it is, I told Mel "That's great, but bot ideal". We have to keep it real. The aim is not to lose so much weight each week, and it certainly doesn't mean failure if one week she'd "only" lost 100g (or even put on a bit of weight!). Fat loss is not linear - weight will fluctuate, and that's perfectly fine. And that is because we're only concerned with LONG TERM WEIGHT LOSS, i.e. FAT LOSS.
I posted this on Twitter last week:
"Do yourself a favour and never ever even consider going on a shake diet. They're so bad for you and they MAKE YOU FAT. Fact."
Bear that in mind and you will already be closer to achieving all of your fat loss goals.
Stay tuned - Mel's before/afters to follow!! (You can subscribe to updates easily on the side -->)
REMINDER: Healthy weight loss rate is around 0,5kg per week, or 1kg per week for those who are overweight.
There is no fast way to permanent weight loss. As hard as it is, take it easy.
Ever lost weight quickly? It's OK if you've been
a) really ill or
b) been on a proper binge -> your body is bloated due to excess fluids -> you're losing the excess fluids fast.
Any other occasion (like a fad diet)? This is where it gets scary - because it will never work in the long term.
If you lose a lot of weight initially, you must ensure your lifestyle habits are radically changed directly following the rapid initial weight loss.
See, that's what it is - weight loss - not fat loss. And there's a massive difference.
Rapid weight loss 95% of the time results in you ending up heavier than you ever were before. And this is due to the muscle mass lost in the progress (meaning slower metabolism). Anyone saying you can lose a lot of fat and not muscle tissue in a short space of time is bullshitting you. This is a scientific fact.
There was a woman who came to me at the gym the other day asking about personal training and bragging that she can lose up to a stone in a week, easy (my reaction certainly wasn't WOW). I then asked if she's prepared to change her eating and drinking habits for good with a bit of help, and the answer was negative (all the regular excused; "I can't [you can] because my social life depends on getting drunk twice a week"/"I don't have time to cook [yes you do]"/"I can't cook [yes you can]"/"I don't like cooking or preparing meals [that's just being lazy and a big part of the problem]"/"My husband eats takeaways every night so I must as well [no you don't/how about the healthier options and smaller portions?]"/"I have to eat chocolate and cake every night" [unnecessary emotional eating] and other invalid reasons).
It was desperately obvious she wasn't ready for a real change - and consequently because of that I wasn't interested in training her as a private client. It's also obvious she'll continue yo-yo dieting = getting bigger every year. I truly hope she doesn't keep going like that forever, because it is frustrating seeing people voluntarily (yes, voluntarily) suffer with their weight.
There's one important message everyone seeking a positive long term change in their body composition must internalise:
Personal training doesn't give you motivation. You must have it first. Don't even think about radically changing your body composition for good if
1) you can't see beyond tomorrow (unless you're seriously ill or significantly change your everyday activity levels) or
2) are not ready to change.
Personal training can "only" give you the tools to change your life. For good. But you must want it first.
P.s. I do personal training differently from many others - I sell results, not exercise sessions. Not all PTs will provide you with anything but exercise - and that's fine - but not my cup of tea :-)
Khelda has had the opposite problem to most; with improved nutrition and training we've focused on her putting ON weight with personal training. From being too skinny to now consistently gaining lean muscle, Khelda has achieved tons in just a few months with me (& her Fit as Hel membership) = strength, better health and a toned body. She comes in for our sessions full of enthusiasm, positive energy and willingness to learn; and this combination results in nothing less than fantastic results.
#fitasheltip Want something? Work for it and you'll get it.
To your health and success,
Got a sweet tooth? I'm starting with a new PT client Mel today and will give her an important task to kick start her new, healthier lifestyle: No unhealthy treats for seven days. This is a great way for her to also start thinking about how to replace chocolate, cakes etc. with other, naturally sweet food items like fruits.
Join us on the challenge (starting NOW) and let us know how you're getting on in our online community here. Please also share your ideas for healthy treats :-).
To happy healthy living,