Q&A (05.02.2016)


I’m still ploughing through the questions, some great ones this week!  I’m loving the variety in what I’m asked and what’s important to different people when it comes to training or diet.

I’m a vegetarian, how can I get enough protein?

There are many foods you can try to make sure you’re eating enough protein:

  • Green peas: 7.9g per cup
  • Quinoa: 8g per cup
  • Nuts and nut butter: Although higher in calories and fats, they’re a good source of protein if you stick to the correct portion size. Look for nut butters with a low number of ingredients, especially no added salt or sugar.
  • Beans: There are loads of varieties out there, but kidney beans are 13g of protein per cup.
  • Chickpeas: 14.6g per cup
  • Tofu: 20g per ½ cup
  • Edamame: 8.4g per ½ cup

Make sure you know how much protein you need per day:

  • Sedentary individuals: 8 g of protein per kilogram of body weight
  • Endurance runners: up to 1.4g of protein per kilogram
  • Strength training athletes: up to 1.8 grams of protein per kilogram.

I’m trying to master pull ups, what exercises can I do to help?

Pull ups! No, seriously, keep at it. Try hanging from the bar, so your body gets into the correct position and is used to doing so. Some Gyms have resistance bands specifically designed to help you perform an assisted pull up, others have a machine.  Use these (if they’re available) to take some of the strain off, meaning you should be able to train at them at a lower intensity.

Heavier weights on the Lat Pulldown will train the same muscles (lats, biceps and forearms), so think about doing 3-5 sets of 4-6 reps to get the strength there.

You can perform a modified pull up on the TRX suspension trainer – again, ask an instructor to show you how to use this if you have one in your Gym.

Please feel free to get in touch for a consultation or a one-off session and I can go through the TRX pull up or anything else you’re not sure of.

I’ve never used the rowing machine before, what’s the best thing to do to start with?

Get an instructor to show you and teach you the correct technique to begin with, and then set the rower up to row 500m intervals with 2 minutes recovery.  500m should take 2-3 minutes, depending on your pace, and try and repeat 2 or 3 times on your first go.

Once you’ve mastered this session, you can look at increasing the distance or reducing your recovery.

To be honest, there are so many different workouts you can do on the rower, you just have to play around with it to find the one that gets you the best results – for me, it’s the 1min:30secs workout.  I try and repeat these as many times as possible, but I can only do a maximum of 7 if I have the rower on level 10!

I have a home workout programme that says to do 3 x 10 of each exercise. I don’t always have time to do them all in one go, can I split them down across the day? Will I still get the same benefit?

If you don’t have time to complete all of the exercise all in one circuit, you have a couple of options.

As an example, you’re programme says to do the following:

  • 3 x 10 press ups
  • 3 x 15 lunges
  • 3 x 10 squats
  • 3 x 10 tricep dips
  • 3 x 15 crunches

You can split them so that you complete 3 separate circuits throughout the day:

  • 10 press ups
  • 15 lunges
  • 10 squats
  • 10 tricep dips
  • 15 crunches

Repeated 3 times (separately)

Or you split them into 2 workouts:

3 x 10 press ups 3 x 15 lunges
3 x 10 squats 3 x 15 crunches
3 x 10 tricep dips

You’re going to get your heart rate going more if you can do all of the exercises in one go, but you won’t lose out too much if you need to split them down – if you don’t have time, splitting them down is more beneficial than not doing them at all!  Just make sure you work as hard as you can, to get the most benefit.

If you have a question or need any further info about some of the things I’ve talked about, please get in touch via email or Facebook

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