One Size Does NOT Fit All

onesizedoesnotfitall

For most people, your chronological age can be an indicator of many things. Your eyesight, your experience level, whether you can drink a beer or not, or if you qualify for a 401k.

But, did you know that your chronological age is not the only category of aging your body can be subjected to?

In fact, a 15 year old can have the same physiological age as a 55 year old. And two 25 year olds can have entirely different developmental ages (their level of cognitive and emotional maturity).

Recognizing the different types of aging is important for understanding your skill level.Koko, for example, takes into account your previous strength aptitude (training age), how old you are (chronological age), and even cognitive skills (developmental age) when developing your specific workout programs. By pinpointing where you stand on these spectrums, we can help you figure out how to start your fitness journey the proper way.

Picture this:

There are two clients, both 50 year old males. They’re both 30 pounds overweight and want to burn some fat because they’re heading somewhere warm with their families over April vacation. On paper they both look the same and want the same thing, but their activities of daily living are very different.

One has an office job where he sits at a desk. The other works in construction and is tackling physically exerting projects each day.

The issue is, we can’t solve their problem the same exact way because they’re two completely different training ages, or, the number of years a person has spent in training or various sports.

Let me explain…

The guy that works in the office is in a state of rest for the majority of his day. He is not contracting and extending the majority of his muscles, he is forgetting to stand up throughout the work day, and his body is in a sitting and hunched position for extended periods of time.

He is equally as de-conditioned as he is dysfunctional.

Guy number 2 is constantly in an active state. He works a job where he is always on his feet, is constantly alert for hazards, and his day involves lots of physical activity like heavy lifting, hammering nails, and climbing ladders.

He is well conditioned and used to physical exertion. However, he may be somewhat dysfunctional (in terms of form, mobility and stability).

So, what’s my point?

Well, while Guy #1 and Guy #2 are of the same age, weight, and share equal goals, theydiffer greatly in their strength, body fat content, range of motion, endurance, and much more. That means their training and physiological ages are different. Each need to start at different weight levels, different motions, and different types of exercises. It is most likely their daily routines will be no where near similar!

Workout programs are NOT one-size-fits-all. Just because that spin class works for your friend, doesn’t mean it will have the same effects on you. Box gyms try to solve this discrepancy with group training.Group classes and training can be energizing and motivating way to stay engaged in fitness. But what is missing is the individualized attention.

What most people find so appealing about these options is the community aspect — the feeling that you are in it together. Unfortunately, since we all have different body types, needs and training ages, a group style “one size fits all” approach can be less effective for people who need a more personalized solution for their issues or goals….”

People flock to group classes because they are affordable and they’re not ‘going it alone.’ But, you are going it alone. The trainer isn’t stopping to teach you, as long as the majority of the group keeps up, they’re doing their job. Why pay for the class at all if you’re not going to do what your specific body type needs to do?

The fitness industry has a tendency to focus only on your ‘show muscles’. This is because the client (you) will see visible results in a short period of time and therefore will believe the class is working. That way, you’ll buy more group classes to work muscles you don’t actually need to work. Show muscles look nice, but they do nothing to make you live longer or move better.

The bottom line is – everybody has a different training age and body type. Therefore, everybody needs their own personalized workout plan to truly feel better every day and look better! What works for one, doesn’t always work for another. It’s all about personalization, and following the plan that is best for you.

The best way to find this plan, is to find a coach or a gym that works one to one and focuses on what you need.

Stay Koko Fit

Michael Wood, CSCS
Chief Fitness Officer, Koko FitClub, LLC

Interested in Koko?
Try 30 days of complete fitness and coaching for just $30.


GET 30 DAYS OF FITNESS FOR $30

About Michael Wood, Chief Fitness Officer

Michael Wood, CSCS, is Chief Fitness Officer at Koko FitClub, driving the development of integrated strength and cardio training and nutrition programs for Koko members nationwide. A nationally acclaimed fitness expert, Michael has conducted research as a Senior Exercise Physiologist at the Nutrition, Exercise Physiology and Sarcopenia Laboratory at the Research Center on Aging at Tufts University, and has lectured at Boston University and the University of Connecticut. He has been named Boston Magazine’s “Best of Boston” Personal Trainer, and made the Men’s Journal “Dream Team” list of the nine best trainers in the U.S. Michael and his family live in North Attleboro, MA.

National Nutrition Month – The ‘All Carbs Are Bad’ Myth

are-all-carbs-bad

I always hear health-conscious people talking about the dangers of carbohydrates, well I am here to bust the “all carbs are bad” myth. Rather than cut essentials from your diet, proper nutrition means you have to eat from all major food groups.

Fitness goals should not include eliminating specific macronutrients from your diet. Fats, carbohydrates, and proteins all play a specific role in keeping your body healthy. That being said, your hard work at Koko FitClub shouldn’t be spoiled by eating poorly. Each week you can calculate your macronutrients if you’re worried you’re not hitting your necessary goals.

Is that 1/2 lbs. of pasta I inhaled last night considered a carb…?

Well, according to   there is a difference between good carbs and bad carbs. Certain carbs are processed or refined – meaning anything white or out of a box, carton or package are more than likely to be full of those pesky bad carbs that will pack on the pounds. In terms of pasta, you’re better off in moderation, or switching to whole wheat.

Cut out all the bad. Eliminating cookies, candies, chips, and ice cream would be my first suggestion. Have a goal of keeping your added sugar to 10% of your total calories each day. Sugar is a lot of calories and high levels daily are sure to make you gain weight. This does not include fruits and vegetables which are naturally occurring and contain fiberto eliminate blood sugar spikes. Women, for example, should aim for 100 calories a day or 25 grams of added sugar and within a few weeks will see body fat start to “melt away.”

“To meet the body’s daily nutritional needs while minimizing risk for chronic disease, adults should get 45% to 65% of their calories from carbohydrates, 20% to 35% from fat, and 10% to 35% from protein.”

– Elaine Magee, MPH, RD (WebMD.com)

Make buying fruits and vegetables a habit over buying processed foods and preservative-laden snacks. Eat your sweets in moderation… but if you’re like me, don’t even have them in the house. So, the reality is, most of your caloric intake will consist of carbohydrates, and it is up to you to choose the good over the bad.

Stay Fit!

Michael Wood, CSCS
Chief Fitness Officer, Koko FitClub, LLC

 

Interested in Koko?
Try 30 days of complete fitness and coaching for just $30.


GET 30 DAYS OF FITNESS FOR $30

 

About Michael Wood, Chief Fitness Officer

Michael Wood, CSCS, is Chief Fitness Officer at Koko FitClub, driving the development of integrated strength and cardio training and nutrition programs for Koko members nationwide. A nationally acclaimed fitness expert, Michael has conducted research as a Senior Exercise Physiologist at the Nutrition, Exercise Physiology and Sarcopenia Laboratory at the Research Center on Aging at Tufts University, and has lectured at Boston University and the University of Connecticut. He has been named Boston Magazine’s “Best of Boston” Personal Trainer, and made the Men’s Journal “Dream Team” list of the nine best trainers in the U.S. Michael and his family live in North Attleboro, MA.

Is a Glass of Red Wine Really Equivalent to an Hour at the Gym?

koko-fitclub-feb-wine-and-cheese
There have been numerous studies on the health benefits of an occasional glass of vino, suggesting that a glass of red wine a day can be good for your heart and reduce the risk of developing dementia or certain cancers.
Now, after research conducted by the University of Alberta in Canada found that resveratrol, a compound found in red wine, can have similar health benefits to an hour of moderate exercise and may enhance exercise training and performance, a new study by Oregon State University suggests that drinking red wine in moderation could improve the health of overweight people by helping them “burn fat better.”
Red wine helping burn fat better? Go on…
According to the study, consuming dark-colored grapes, whether eating them or drinking juice or wine, might help people better manage obesity and related metabolic disorders such as fatty liver.

In the study, human liver and fat cells were exposed to extracts of natural chemicals found in Muscadine grapes. One of the chemicals, ellagic acid, dramatically “slowed the growth of existing fat cells and formation of new ones” while boosting metabolism of fatty acids in liver cells.

According to Neil Shay, a biochemist and molecular biologist at OSU who was part of the study, these plant chemicals are not a weight-loss miracle. However, by boosting the burning of fat, especially in the liver, they may improve liver function in overweight people. ”If we could develop a dietary strategy for reducing the harmful accumulation of fat in the liver, using common foods like grapes,” Shay said, “that would be good news.”
So, maybe having a glass of wine a day isn’t exactly like getting in a great strength training or cardio workout, but you can enjoy both in moderation at Koko FitClub. Check out a wine and cheese night at a club near you! Contact your local Koko FitClub for details.
Cheers!
Michael Wood, CSCS
Chief Fitness Officer, Koko FitClub

 

Interested in Koko?
Try 30 days of complete fitness and coaching for just $30.


GET 30 DAYS OF FITNESS FOR $30

 

About Michael Wood, Chief Fitness Officer

Michael Wood, CSCS, is Chief Fitness Officer at Koko FitClub, driving the development of integrated strength and cardio training and nutrition programs for Koko members nationwide. A nationally acclaimed fitness expert, Michael has conducted research as a Senior Exercise Physiologist at the Nutrition, Exercise Physiology and Sarcopenia Laboratory at the Research Center on Aging at Tufts University, and has lectured at Boston University and the University of Connecticut. He has been named Boston Magazine’s “Best of Boston” Personal Trainer, and made the Men’s Journal “Dream Team” list of the nine best trainers in the U.S. Michael and his family live in North Attleboro, MA.

Avoid These 5 Epic Fails at the Gym

epic-gym-fail-treadmill

There’s no joy in celebrating failure. So, let’s consider every failed attempt at fitness as a learning opportunity, a chance to do it better next time. Here are our top 5 ways that gyms can fail you, and how you are going to avoid them this year.

  1. Walking around and never actually exercising. You see this often at “big box” gyms: members wander around, wondering what to do, grab a snack, and leave. This one is easy to fix. When you go to the gym, exercise.
  2. Not showing up. Hard to succeed at the gym if you don’t go. Another easy one to fix. Make a commitment to yourself and your fitness goals. Schedule your weekly workouts, and get yourself to the gym.
  3. Working only half the body. When it comes to strength training, most people don’t know what to do. As a result, they exercise only their favorite muscles, not all of them. Total body workouts are key for overall conditioning and a more sculpted physique.
  4. Not doing enough cardio. If your goals involve weight loss, then make sure you add sufficient high intensity interval training (HIIT) into your weekly workout mix. If done correctly, just 15-30 minutes a day, 3-4 days a week, is all you need to rev your metabolism and burn extra calories.
  5. Not working with an expert. Incorrect use of equipment is perhaps the most hilarious — yet dangerous — epic gym failure of all. Not sure what to do? Don’t worry, you don’t have to go it alone. A coach can help you get the most out of your gym experience. A coach will build a customized plan, show you the right exercises and the right way to do them, properly measure your success, and keep you motivated for continued progress.

 

Interested in Koko?
Try 30 days of complete fitness and coaching for just $30.


GET 30 DAYS OF FITNESS FOR $30

 

About Lauren Dell’Olio

Lauren Dell’Olio is a Fitness Life Correspondent and Managing Editor of The Stronger Blog. Lauren brings her perspective as a working mother of three, lifelong fitness enthusiast, marathon runner and “foodie” to the Stronger Blog. Lauren joined the Koko FitClub corporate team in 2008 as one of the company’s early employees and currently serves as Director of Marketing, with a focus on member experience, content development, social media and digital strategy. Since Lauren joined Koko, the company has grown from 1 to 125+ locations nationwide, serving over 20,000 members. Lauren and her family live in Norwell, MA.

Don’t Stop Strength Training This Summer

screen-shot-2015-05-19-at-10-49-55-am

Most gym-goers work hard throughout the year, building strength and increasing lean muscle levels with consistent strength training in order to stay youthful, manage weight, and look great.

Yet, far too many of them throw it all away when those lazy days of summer roll around, avoiding the gym in favor of outdoor activities.

Why? Do athletes stop training in the off-season? Of course not. They continue to exercise and eat right so that their bodies maintain the gains they worked so hard to achieve year-round. And that includes regular strength training.

It’s no different with your gym membership and your personal workout habits. As the summer approaches, you may think of yourself as being more “active” outside (a good thing) and may consider freezing your gym membership (a bad thing!). Before you do, you should know this: when you stop strength training, your body can “detrain” in as little as two to three weeks. That means, all those gains you worked so hard to achieve may start to reverse the longer you stay away from your workouts.

Even if you increase your outdoor cardio activity in the summer, it isn’t a replacement for strength training.  By cutting back on strength workouts, you will lose lean muscle and strength, which means you’ll have to work harder to get them back.

To remain in great  summer shape, don’t abandon the gym and your strength training sessions. Continue to enjoy your favorite summertime activities, but to maintain that lean, strong body you’ve worked so hard to achieve, be sure to incorporate just one or two strength sessions into your weekly workout routine. When September rolls around, you can return to more frequent trips to the gym and increase the volume of your training, but you’ll be in much better shape thanks to continued progress over the summer. Your body will thank you for it.


 

Interested in Koko?
Try 30 days of complete fitness and coaching for just $30.


GET 30 DAYS OF FITNESS FOR $30

 

About Michael Wood, Chief Fitness Officer

Michael Wood, CSCS, is Chief Fitness Officer at Koko FitClub, driving the development of integrated strength and cardio training and nutrition programs for Koko members nationwide. A nationally acclaimed fitness expert, Michael has conducted research as a Senior Exercise Physiologist at the Nutrition, Exercise Physiology and Sarcopenia Laboratory at the Research Center on Aging at Tufts University, and has lectured at Boston University and the University of Connecticut. He has been named Boston Magazine’s “Best of Boston” Personal Trainer, and made the Men’s Journal “Dream Team” list of the nine best trainers in the U.S. Michael and his family live in North Attleboro, MA.