Create Structure to Allow Freedom

We all need structure in our life.

You may think you are a free spirit, but success is achieved through hard work and discipline, not an airy-fairy approach. If you are a parent, you know this to be true. Children function best when they have structure and routine. They need to know boundaries, when their bed time is, and the rituals they need to perform before bed. I’ve said this before; if you wonder why your kid is cranky, acts out, or has behavioural problems, look at your life and schedule. You need to live your life around their schedule, not the other way around. But what if you are not a parent, how can you relate to this? Think of something you have achieved in your life, like getting a black belt, a university degree, a good job or the man/women of your dreams. You did it through structured hard work, not being lackadaisical about it.

Now you may ask, what does this have to do with fitness?

It has everything to do with it! If you are an on-again-off-again type of fitness person, then you will get those kinds of results (which isn’t much). I’ve amusedly observed these type of people in gyms for 20+ years. But, if you build exercise into your routine, you will get the results you want, have the body you want, and most importantly, be able to do the things you enjoy.

At Peak Synergy Fitness, we just had our first member reach 100 classes. Ryan’s results are excellent because he is consistent. It is nothing extreme. He comes every M/W and every other Thursday. He’s only missed a couple of classes because of minor injuries (not from Peak!). You wouldn’t think just 2-3 times per week could make such a huge difference, but it does. Those 100 classes transformed not only his body, but him as a person. Ryan walks into the gym with more confidence than ever, and instead of looking for the easiest version of an exercise, looks for the hardest he can do. His arms have doubled in size, and he has kept his body fat low. He comes early to roll out kinks to be ready for class.

Why do people like Ryan get the results they do? Consistency. Structure. And, one very important thing; memory. They remember what got them there. Heavy strength training and intelligent metabolic conditioning got him there. He is not suddenly going to join “Globo Gym”, do step classes, and start running marathons.

The definition of insanity as per Albert Einstein: doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting different results. So, if  by training a few times a month, or when the mood strikes you, you expect results, that is insane. Schedule 2x/week into your schedule for 2017. Every single person has time for this. If you say you don’t, then your health is not a priority. You need to put your health first, so that you can be there for your family, friends, teammates etc. It’s not a lot. Program it into your phone now. Write out a plan for 2017 with your goals and act now.

In Health,

Coach Kumar

Unabashedly educating you on how you can win in life with your fitness, sleep, diet, and stress management.

Apocalyptic Training – Worst Case Scenario Readiness

Is your training useful to you?

In a catastrophic emergency, would all your training aid yourself, your family, your community? Or…are you the one whining about the scrape on your leg, the lack of water or not being able to update your Facebook status? If there was an earthquake right now, would you be out there digging for survivors, lifting beams and pillars off of people or would you be the one crying in a corner? Is this too grim? Maybe, but I always want to be prepared for anything life and mother nature has to throw at me.

At the age of 19, I lifted a car out of a ditch that was about to slide down a mountainside.

It was a cheap, feather-light import, but it was still a car. I was prepared to let it go if it started taking me down with it, but I managed to bounce then lift it to safety. I saved my friends car, and felt pretty damn good about it. I would not have been able to do that if I spent my high school days playing video games. Instead, it was spent weightlifting 90 minutes a day, 6 days a week. Fast forward 25 years and I still feel confident in my ability to be useful in an emergency. I am extremely strong, know how to start a fire, build a shelter, tie knots, collect water, administer any kind of first aid, talk to people, lead small and large groups, and take charge or take orders.

If you know me well, you know I am prepared. ALWAYS.

I have emergency kits at work, in my car, in my home. But, that is just part of it. No amount of preparation can help if you are not mentally and physically prepared. Your training must mirror what you hope to become in a stressful situation. Biceps curls may be for the girls, but it won’t help you in real life! I talk a lot about stress inoculation to my kids and my martial arts students. We must train like how we want to perform in competition (or an emergency). It gives me goosebumps to watch someone really train with ferocity. Instill some seriousness into your training and your benefits will skyrocket.

Can you sprint full speed for 100 meters? Can you lift at least your body weight from the ground? Can you squat your body weight? Can you do at least 20 push-ups? Can you hang from a bar for 30 seconds? Can you walk non-stop for 8 hours? Can you carry your children or injured dog 1km? Can you balance on a beam 2 stories high? Can you crawl in and under tight spaces? I would consider these all essential survival skills that you can work on in a gym.

If you wonder why we do animal crawls/walks, hops, jumps, hanging, squatting, pressing, etc, this is why. There is always a method to my madness. I want my clients to be strong, fit, healthy, pain-free, not only in life, but also in worst case scenarios. It’s not rocket science. Training for this stuff is easy, it just takes some imagination, and not worrying about how you look. It’s especially fun to get down to ground level if you have kids. So, start today. I always hope for the best, but I am still prepared for the worst. You should be too!

In Health,

Coach Kumar

Unabashedly educating you on how you can win in life with your fitness, sleep, diet, and stress management.

Client Transformation Story: 40lbs and counting!

Bryan’s Weight Loss Transformation Story:

Body Transformation Weight Loss

“I joined Peak Synergy Fitness at the end of 2015, with the intention of improving my overall fitness and health with the help of some group classes. Prior to joining Peak, I had never attended a group fitness class before and wasn’t really sure what to expect. Believe it or not, the routine of going to the gym without a plan or any idea of what I was doing, wasn’t all that successful in helping me with weight loss!

I weighed in on January 11th 2016 at 252.8 pounds. The weight itself wasn’t a surprise to me, but Coach Kumar, who helped me in taking some before and after pictures, warned me prior to looking at them that seeing yourself in a picture is always going to be different than in a mirror. And he wasn’t lying; if “the camera adds 10 pounds”, there must have been a few more on me than I was aware of!

A year to the day later, I weighed in at 211.0 pounds, for a total loss of 41.8 pounds. Keeping an accurate log of my weight throughout the year meant the weight itself wasn’t much of a surprise a year later, the surprise was now seeing the pictures of myself and seeing the transformation. If anything, this one year follow-up isn’t the finish line, it’s a checkpoint on my continued journey.

Body Transformation Weight Loss

After hitting a high of about 280 pounds a few years ago, I began making progress to get to the 250ish mark over the last few years. That number seemed to be a plateau that I wasn’t able to get below on my own, so it motivated me to start making some more changes, and reach out to the experts at Peak.

The biggest change that I stubbornly tried to fight off for as long as possible was cleaning up my diet. Joining peak forced me to finally do so, which made a world of difference. To help monitor my progress, I downloaded an app for my iPhone to track my daily weigh-ins. Both Maria and Kumar have been amazing resources for assisting me on my journey, offering suggestions to improve on different workouts, but also advice on my nutrition/diet/lifestyle. This major change was definitely the catalyst to breaking past my plateau and seeing such a big transformation over the year.

Coming to Peak has made me feel accountable to show up and take responsibility for my own results, and I now look forward to attending after work to blow off some steam and join the workouts. It’s become a regular part of my routine that I never imagined that I would be doing, and I love it! Kumar has most recently given me the challenge to make my legs stronger in 2017, and he is giving me the tools to succeed and keep me focused on improvement. Here’s to 2017, and another year of success! Thanks Peak!”

Body Transformation Weight Loss

Ready to start your own success story? Our 3 Month Unlimited Transformation Package is the perfect kick-start for your journey. Click here to register and get started on your transformation!

Oral Hygiene – A Missing Link in Optimal Health

Oral hygiene could possibly be the missing link in optimizing your health. If you are suffering from unexplained problems like joint pain, concentration problems, depression, irritable bowels, recurring infections and brain fog, it might be your teeth.

Teeth are not just rocks in your mouth. They are living organs!

They have nerves and a blood supply, and touch everything you put into your mouth. Everything that touches your teeth, gums, and cheeks gets absorbed into the body. In a society that is obsessed with simply white teeth, we often forget there is much more to a healthy mouth.

Chronic low-grade infection can contribute to many issues. We have talked about systemic inflammation before. There is local inflammation like when you hit your thumb with a hammer. Then there is overall body inflammation at the cellular level. Long-term chronic infection or exposure to toxins (like mercury, fluoride, food colorings, Xenoestrogens) can contribute to this. Pinpointing the cause is hard since it can take a long time to express symptoms.

Your depression or IBS could be caused by an unhealthy gut, caused by gut dysbiosis, caused by lack of healthy gut flora, caused by fluoride consumption – all from using conventional toothpaste and drinking fluoridated water.

Why do we need to be so careful about which chemicals touch our insides? Nearly every chemical that controls the brain is also located in the stomach region, including hormones and neurotransmitters such as Serotonin, Dopamine, Glutamate, GABA and Norepinephrine. The gut contains 100 million neurons – more than the spinal cord. But there are also two-dozen small brain proteins; major cells of the immune system; one class of the body’s natural opiates; and native benzodiazepines. The gut, known as the enteric nervous system, is located in sheaths of tissue lining the esophagus, stomach, small intestine and colon, and plays a key role in human emotions. But few know the enteric nervous system exists, and therefore gut health is often overlooked. Symptoms from the two brains can get confused, and just as the brain can upset the gut, the gut can also upset the brain.

I have to admit, I have been blessed with almost perfect teeth. They are white, straight, and I’ve never had a cavity in my life. I am sure much of it is genetics. I do however have a rigorous oral hygiene routine of flossing, brushing, water pick, and more flossing. I grew up in Calgary where the water was fluoridated and I also got extra fluoride via drops when I was a kid. That was just what people did. It did create very strong white teeth, but unbeknownst to me, this can create severe problems later in life. Fluoride can create such a tight barrier, that cavities fester within the tooth without the dentist seeing them. These long-term low-level infections can wreak havoc on the immune system. I’ve been lucky, but many people have severe health problems now because of fluoride toxicity or mercury poisoning from fillings.

The trend in the last few years is to remove mercury fillings. Unless done in an almost Hazmat-like environment, where the mercury is treated as a hazardous material, this can sometimes make things worse. The patient, dentist, and hygienists are exposed to mercury off-gassing during the procedure. If you have mercury fillings and want to get them removed, be sure to seek a dentist that specializes in this. Biological Dentistry and Holistic Dentistry is what you would search for. Make sure all fillings are “amalgam free”. Sometimes it may be worse to have them removed. There is a special meter which can measure how much off-gassing is happening. I compare it to asbestos. Asbestos buried within a wall is not an issue, but once it becomes airborne, then it wreaks havoc on the lungs.

A Holistic Dentist will tell you what you should already know:

  1. Brush twice a day and after meals if you can.
  2. Floss daily – it’s best to floss after brushing so you don’t push plaque/dirt into the gums.
  3. Change your toothbrush regularly. Keep it away from the toilet in a cabinet.
  4. Rinse your mouth after drinking tea, coffee, colas etc.
  5. Consider using a non-fluoride base toothpaste. If you can’t make a complete switch, then use the fluoride toothpaste in the morning and natural toothpaste at night.
  6. Eat whole, unprocessed foods, as close to nature as much as possible.
  7. Limit sugar to a minimum.
  8. Meditate or use relaxation methods to reduce stress-induced TMJ (jaw pain) and teeth grinding.

A healthy diet plays a major role in teeth health. Weston A. Price, a dentist in the early 1900’s, was called the “Isaac Newton of Nutrition”. He postulated that modern children, teenagers, and adults suffer tooth decay, tooth loss, tooth abscess, along with malformations of the maxillary and mandibular bones that result in crooked teeth because of the ingestion of excess sugar and grains. 

Lastly, it’s important that you protect your teeth from injury. Think of how much time and effort you have invested in your teeth over a lifetime. If you play contact sports like hockey, football, lacrosse, soccer and even non-contact sports like ultimate or downhill skiing, a mouth guard is a solid investment.

Oral hygiene is not something we give a lot of thought to, besides our own personal routine. You will not see articles on fitness websites on this topic, but complete health means you care for your entire body, not just what people see on the outside. So, take your 3 minutes both morning and night to brush your teeth thoroughly and you’ll have healthy chompers well into your 90’s.

In Health,

Coach Kumar

Unabashedly educating you on how you can win in life with your fitness, sleep, diet, and stress management.

 

Develop a Plan for Success: Have SMART Goals

Setting SMART goals for 2017

Have some goals you want to achieve in 2017? In order to be successful in anything you do, especially in fitness, you need to develop a plan. Haphazardly going to the gym will never allow you to achieve your goals.

They say that people that write their goals down, tell people, and revisit them often are far more successful in achieving them.

How many times have you made New Years Resolutions, only to let them fall by the wayside by mid-January? What if you actually spent some serious time researching, writing them down, and then developing a plan to execute them?

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Intuitive Training – Using Mindfulness to Optimize Results

trusting_your_intuitionIntuitive training is the key to success. Blindly following a program without really listening to your body is a sure-fire way to burn out, or get injured. But what does it mean to train intuitively? Read on to find out.

You just read Muscle and Fitness Magazine and now go to the gym to follow the Ultimate Glute Scorcher routine. You ignore that you have tight hips, you tweaked your hamstring running for the bus this morning, and you only slept 5 hours last night. You grind your way through the workout doing multiple sets of squats, lunges and all sorts of variations thereof. That is the opposite of training intuitively!

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In Pain? Use Cross Friction Massage for Immediate Relief

cross_fiber_friction_diaCross friction massage is a technique where, essentially, one massages back and forth perpendicular to the tendon direction. Its purpose is to break down scar tissue, align muscle fibers, increase blood flow, release trigger points or muscle spasm and relieve pain.

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Stem Cell Therapy for Joint Pain

knee-injury-painHave a chronic joint pain preventing you from reaching your health and fitness potential? Current stem-cell research might be in your favour!

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The Basics And Why They Work

Using The Basics of Exercise To Get & Stay Fit

Where to start with fitness

In fitness you will often hear about getting back to the basics. There is a reason for that: it’s because they work.

Some gyms and coaches will give you cutting edge exercises and use technologically advanced equipment. You may be hooked up to monitors, or competing against some imaginary opponent; but all we really need is our own body weight and some simple bars and plates.  Heck, if you don’t have weights, do what the Scots do, lift heavy stones.
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Progressive Muscle Relaxation

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Reduce Stress In Minutes

It is believed that the body responds to anxiety by provoking muscle tension, and the tense muscles then increase the feeling of anxiety. Deep muscle relaxation reduces physiological tension, reduces pulse rate and blood pressure, and decreases perspiration and respiration rates.

This technique is effective in the treatment of muscular tension, anxiety, insomnia, depression, OCD, anger, fatigue, irritable bowel, muscle spasms, neck and back pain, high blood pressure, and mild phobias.
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