Monday, December 21, 2009

Last Minute Gifts idea for a Healthy 2010!!

Merry Christmas!
I was recently introduced to an amazing book. It is one of those books that is so easy to read and so informative that you will have a hard time putting it down. I have not finished the entire book yet, but I liked it so much that I bought 13 copies to pass out to my clients and I wanted to share it with you here today.

It is called: The 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth: The Surprising, Unbiased Truth About What You Should Eat and Why. By: Jonny Bowden, PH.D., C.N.S (hopefully no relation to Bobby!, just kidding, when ever I get a chance to knock on FSU I gotta take it!:)Here is the Amazon link:

So if you are having trouble buying a gift for that person that already had everything, I highly recommend this book.

Thank you all for taking the time to read my Blogs over this past year. I hope you have a very Merry Christmas, a happy holiday season, and a very healthy 2010!!


Have you taken the "12 Days of Christmas" workout challenge yet?
Here is the video!!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

The "12 Days of Christmas" The workout

Hey Everyone,
I just finished editing my annual Christmas workout. The "12 Days of Christmas". It is an INTENSE circuit style workout.

Check out the youtube link below, time your workout from start to finish and then post a comment with your best time.

Good Luck and Merry Christmas.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

MTS of the Week 12/1/2009.... 50-10-5

Hey Everyone,
This week I have one of two circuits that I put all of our personal trainers through at our last monthly staff meeting.

It is INTENSE! It is a 50-10-5 circuit. Which means, each exercise is performed for 50 seconds, followed by a 10 second rest/transition, with a total of 5 exercise. Each round consist of 5 minutes of intense strength endurance based exercise. Each round is followed by a 60 seconds break, then the routine is repeated for a total of 4 or 5 rounds totaling 25 minutes.

1. Kettle Bell/dumbbell plank row
2. Alternating leg lunge
3. Kettle bell swings
4. Box/ bench jumps
5. Kettle Bell Snatches

Give it a go! Enjoy.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Holiday Survival Guide 2009

Hey Blog-villers,
Well, its that time a year again when we notice a couple of trends here around the gym.
1. We notice a lot more inconsistency with clients making it to their personal training sessions or visits to the gym. This is to be expected due to the fact that many people will be traveling around the holidays to be with friends and families, and
2. People have a tendency to over-indulge during the holiday season and put on a couple of extra and unwanted pounds.

So, I offer you these simple tips to keep you on track with your health and fitness goals during this time of year.

1. Keep a food log: Many nutritionist recommend this, and research backs them up, that when you simply record what you eat on a daily basis you will lose weight faster. This is especially important during the holidays when we will be tempted by snacks and sweets common during the holidays.
2. Get out and walk: During the holidays people tend to travel more, which means people will get out of their routine of going to the gym to get their exercise. Walking is a great way to stay active when you are away from home and not able to go to the gym. Walking is low impact, burns calories, and and helps trigger many of our normal and important bodily function, such as digestion that will help us metabolize those holiday snacks and meals. Get a pedometer, they can be very inexpensive, and aim for at least 10,000 steps per day.
3. Holiday Parties!: We all have them this time of year, they are often unavoidable(office parties, thanksgiving parties, Christmas parties, etc..) You would never guess that I work in a health and fitness facility if you saw our break room this time of year. It is kind of embarrassing actually. We have many members that bring us cookies, cakes, snacks, and random goodies...... It is a thoughtful gesture of their appreciation for what we do and we appreciate it very much, however, I know how easy it is to "snack" more than normal this time of year. If you are hosting the party, provide the smaller "dessert" size plates for your guest to use. Bottom line is that with smaller plates you can't fit as much food on them! And if you are attending a party be sure to seek out the small plates and make a point to just fill this one plate up and be done.
4. Fill the Tank: Start your day of thanks with a fiber-filled breakfast. Fiber will take up more space in your stomach and keep you feeling full longer. Don't skip any meals because you know you are going to have a big Thanksgiving Day meal, eat normal throughout the day so you wont want a big meal!
5. Don't deprive yourself...moderation is the key: Treat yourself to the things you enjoy. Don't try to completely avoid all the treats you like, this often times can lead to over-eating when you do decide to enjoy them. Just "sample" the sweets and snacks. This takes a little will power, but if you just sample little portions of the "goodies" you will feel much better about yourself, while still satisfying your cravings. At the table, fill most of your plate with lean cuts of meat and vegetables. When you've filled up on the healthy stuff then simply taste the heavier dishes, rather than eating a large serving.
6. Wait!: Wait at least 20 minutes before you get a second helping. This is very important since it takes at least this long for your body to register how full it actually is. You may realize after 20 minutes that you don't want seconds after all.

I hope these tips help you stay healthy and happy during this holiday season. Have an incredible and safe Thanksgiving!


Monday, November 2, 2009

MTS of The Week 11/2/2009

Hey Everyone,
Today we have another entry of the MTS of The Week.
This workout is kinda cross fit style made to challenge strength-endurance. This is a great circuit training work out method that lets you challenge yourself from one set to the next.

*each exercise is done for 1 min in duration with no rest in between exercises. Score 1 point for every repetition completed during that minute for A1-A4, for A5 count how many calories burned in the minute. Add your points together, and that will be your score to beat for the next round.

A1 Medicine Ball toss against a wall 20 lbs
A2 Kettle Bell sumo deadlift to high pull 50 lbs
A3 Box jumps (at least knee level box)
A4 Dumb bell Push press ~25-30 lbs
A4 Concept 2 rower


Sunday, October 18, 2009

JC'S "Life's Sets and Reps"

I just got back from a great personal training business and marketing seminar. There were many great speakers, but I just wanted to highlight a slide from one of the speakers for todays blog.

Juan Carlos Santana is very well know in the fitness industry for his "functional fitness" mentality. But what I liked about his presentation this weekend was that it was different than his normal presentation. This presentation dealt with handling "Life". Many people come to us to help make them physically better, but there are usually so many unresolved components of peoples daily life that make helping the "physical" very difficult if not impossible.

So, JC presented a slide he labeled "Life's Sets and Reps". And I wanted to share it with you here today. Hope you enjoy it. I feel many of us spend to much time in some of these categories and greatly neglect some of the others

Enjoy and Keep moving

"Life's Sets and Reps"
Pure Spiritual time (1-3 hours per week) These activities do not take up physical energy. They allow you to feel calm, happy, and transcendence. Music, meditation, art, reading, etc.
Physical spiritual time (3-7 hours per week) These activities involve a rhythmic movement that provides a positive hormonal and psychological environment that allows one to be involved in positive imagery and self talk. This is exercise, problem solving, a pat on the back, and exercising the "will" of life.
Social Time (1-7 hours per week) Dedicate time to special people in your life (outside immediate family). Communicate with special friends that provide you with a secure social circle and an upbeat social environment.
Family Time (1-7 hours per week) Spend quality time with immediate family members (i.e. no TV, no cell phones, no distraction) If there are no family members around, substitute that time with close friends- thus the big range in time for both categories.
Work (40-50 hours per week) This is a must for most. However, the more courage one has to make work something they love to do, the closer they will be to true happiness. YOU CAN'T BE HAPPY MOST OF THE TIME IF YOU ARE MISERABLE AT WORK MOST OF THE TIME.
Good Sleep (49- 56 hours per week) Enough can't be said about this activity- most Americans are sleep deprived- even if they spend many hours in bed. Good Sleep (7-8 hours per night)!

Please comment on your thoughts

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Don't just warm up.....Get Moving!!

Dynamic Warm-Up

Gone are the days of walking on a treadmill and static stretching before exercise or some sort of sport or activity. Research shows us that although static stretching is still great for increasing range of motion, it is also great at shutting down our nervous system. That is not so great when we are getting ready to exercise or engage in some form of athletic event! We need are bodies to be alert, we need our blood to be flowing strongly to the muscle, the muscles need to be loosened up, wide awake, and ready to produce at the top of their game!

What our bodies need is a good dynamic, movement based warm-up prior to activity. The Dynamic Warm-up is a warm-up routine that improves flexibility, cardiovascular
readiness, and the level of neural excitation. A dynamic warm-up can be very specific to an activity, such as movements that will simulate the activities of playing tennis, or more general to help you prepare for a good calorie burning full body workout. What's great about a dynamic warm-up is that a properly performed dynamic warm-up will give you the benefits of increasing your heart rate and circulation like you might do on a treadmill, at the same time you will be increasing your range of motion to help prevent injury just like you would do with flexibility training! As a matter of fact, according to research by Fredrick and Szymanski when performed before, during, and after an exercise routine or sports performance the dynamic warm-up has been shown to decrease post-activity soreness as well as increase power production by 20% in addition to improved flexibility. The routine can be used as a way to increase recovery after and in between workouts.

I am in the process of making a video of these movements. In the mean time click the link below for my picture presentation:

Dynamic Warm up Pictures....

Enjoy! and get ready to sweat!

Keep Moving,

Monday, September 28, 2009

Tebow--- Return to Play?

Hey Everyone,
I am still working on the video for the "Dynamic Warm-up", but I had to take a break from it in light of all the questions people have asked me regarding "When will Tim Tebow play again"?

To preface my answer, I am not employed by University Athletic Association, or the UF Football team. However I am a Certified Athletic Trainer, and because of that many people have asked the above question to me. So, I figured I would summarize the Return to Play Guidelines as stated in the NATA's position statement on Management of Sports Related Concussions.

The First thing usually done when managing a concussion is to place a "grade" on the severity of the concussion. One of the scales used for this is called the Cantu Evidence Based Grading System. The Cantu grading system is explained below:

Grade 1 (mild) No Loss of consciousness, Posttraumatic amnesia for less than 30 min, Postconcussion signs and symptoms for less than 24 hours
Grade 2 (moderate) Loss of consciousness for less than 1 min or Posttraumatic amnesia for greater than 30 min ,less than 24 h or
Postconcussion signs and symptoms greater than 24 hours ,and less than 7 days
Grade 3 (severe) Loss of consciousness for greater than 1 min or Posttraumatic amnesia for greater than 24 hours or Postconcussion signs and symptoms for greater than 7 days

When to Return to play?
An athlete may return to play only after all post-concussive symptoms have resolved both at rest and with exercise.

*Grade 1 Concussion
May return to play after 15 minutes if no headache or other post-concussive symptoms are present.

*Multiple Grade 1 Concussions
Return to play after 1 week without symptoms.

*Grade 2 Concussion
Return to play after 1 week without symptoms.

*Multiple Grade 2 Concussions
Return to play after 2 weeks without symptoms.

*Grade 3 Concussion(brief)
Return to play after 1 week without symptoms.

*Grade 3 Concussion (prolonged)
Return to play after 2 weeks without symptoms. May need to consider terminating season if symptoms persist.

*Multiple Grade 3 Concussions
Hold out at least one month. Base on decision of evaluating physician.

So, The answer to the Million Dollar Question:
Q.When Will Tim Tebow be able to Play again?
A. It depends!! It is very possible that if his symptoms have subsided he will be ready for LSU! Having a bye week makes it very probable. Knowing what we all know about Timmy is that he is a tough SOB! I would be very surprised to NOT see him play in two weeks.....That decision will ultimately come from the team physician with close monitoring from the team Athletic Trainer.

Hope this helps...... cross your fingers and keep Tim's health and the entire teams health in your prayers!!

Keep Moving,

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Stayed Tuned..... Great Quote!

Hey Everyone,
I have just finished writing a great article describing the benefits of a dynamic warm-up prior to activity. Now I just need to finish putting together the demo video that goes along with the article. For the majority of you the article would probably sound like I am speaking Latin without video demonstration. So, I will get this posted hopefully by sometime early next week. In the mean time I leave you with 2 great quote:

"Keep steadily before you the fact that all true success depends at last upon yourself."
Theodore T. Hunger

"Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out."
Robert Collier

Keep Moving,

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Are you deprived?

Hey Everyone,
Today we have a guest blogger, this is an article out of a newsletter from Gainesville Health and Fitness. I thought this would compliment my last blog about "planning" nicely.......although I still believe in hard work:)
So, I hope you enjoy it!

Keep Moving,

The Freedom of (self imposed) chains

Most of us are under the misconception that fit people work hard and spend most of their lives deprived in order to achieve their amazing bodies.

Nothing could be farther from the truth.

I'll let you in on a little secret...It's not hard to get and stay fit. It's not about hard work and deprivation.

It's all about boundaries.

Let me explain...

When you were a child your parents set boundaries around you. They were the authority on what was or wasn't acceptable behavior. You had to complete your chores before dinner. You had to finish your homework before going out to play. You had to eat all your vegetables before dessert.

If you failed to comply with these boundaries then you knew that there would be consequences.

As an adult you, and only you, are the authority on what is or isn't acceptable behavior. You are in the position to set boundaries around yourself. These boundaries serve as a framework of order around you - a rock of support in an otherwise chaotic world.

With self-imposed boundaries you can assure your success in anything...specifically with weight loss.

Your fitness boundaries have to be self-imposed, no one is going to do it for you. Don't look at this as a bad thing! Self-imposed boundaries are self-empowering.

Let's face it, you've been living life without fitness boundaries.
You eat whatever you want, whenever you want it.
You use any excuse to avoid exercise.
You indulge whenever it feels good.
Your Fitness Boundaries

It's time to introduce boundaries back into your life. These boundaries are the key to unleashing your ideal fit and healthy body.

1. Fitness Boundary One: What you eat

If you were to be perfectly honest with me, you could list off the foods that are unhealthy and fattening. So why are you still eating them? You know that refined, fried, processed and sugary foods are not good for you.

Place boundaries around what you will allow yourself to eat. Acceptable food items include whole foods, vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and lean meats.

2. Fitness Boundary Two: How you exercise

I know that you're not an Olympic athlete, but that doesn't mean that you can simply pass on exercise. By now you are well aware of the host of benefits that exercise provides. With regular exercise you'll look great, feel amazing and have more energy than ever.

Place boundaries around how often you must exercise. Choose exercise that is challenging and fun - don't be afraid to try new activities that improve your strength and endurance.

3. Fitness Boundary Three: When you indulge

Let's face it, we live in a world where indulging has become the norm, rather than the exception. When you live life without fitness boundaries, everyday is an opportunity to indulge. These indulgences all add up quickly, causing your clothes to become tight and your energy levels to drop.

Place boundaries around when you can indulge. You'll find that by limiting your indulgences you'll end up enjoying them even more.

Putting It In Action

Sit down and take a long, hard look at your lifestyle. Are you eating as healthy as you could be? Are you exercising 3-5 times each week? Are you indulging too often? Answer the following questions:

What 3 food items can I eliminate from my daily diet? (These should be nutritionally void items like high-calories beverages, fast food, packaged snacks, high-fat food, candy or desserts.)
When can I schedule exercise into my week? (Pick 3-5 days, and select a specific timeframe. Example: I'm going to exercise on Monday, Wednesday and Fridays from 5am-6am.)
When will I allow myself to indulge? (Don't go overboard here, especially if you need to lose weight. Enjoy a treat a couple times each month, and do so guilt-free knowing that you've maintained healthy food boundaries the rest of the time.
Remember that self-imposed boundaries are self-empowering.

Fitness boundaries put your fitness results on autopilot. If you know what constitutes an acceptable meal, then choosing what to eat just got a whole lot easier. If you're committed to exercising 3 times a week, soon it becomes second nature.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Big Arm Friday!!

Hey Everyone,
Just a quick little post of my Friday workout, just in case you all wanted to try it. This routine is a little more old school, a break from my typical integrated movement workouts, focusing on isolated arm training. But I am a big believer in mixing things up, and using all the tools in your tool bag! So, enjoy!

MTS of The Week.... "Big Arm Friday"

A1 Barbell bicep curls 3 sets 10-12
A2 DB overhead press tricep extension 3 X 12-15

B1 Cable rope curls (hammer grip style)3 X 10
B2 Dips 3 X failure

C1 DB alternating curls 3 x 10
C2 Supine single arm tricep extensions (skull crushers)3 x 10

Keep Moving

Monday, August 24, 2009

The one that plans.....Wins!!

One of the most common questions asked of me is this, "can you show me some exercises that will blast my abs and give me that six pack"..... How many times have you asked that question or thought about asking that question yourself? And, my answer is always the same.. "I will be happy to crush your abs, and show you how to crush your own abs!........ but it is not really gonna matter if you continue to shovel that crap into your mouth, you will have strong abs, but never see them!

I think it is very conservative to say that 80% of your success in an exercise program will be determined by how you eat. Whether your goal is to lose weight, gain mass, or just maintain your current weight, I can promise you that achieving your desired result will be very difficult if not very improbable if you are not eating well. And when I say "well", that can mean many things. Eating to much, not eating enough, eating high fat foods, eating to many white starchy, processed foods, fried, covered in sauces and gravy, you name it, there are many ways to eat improperly.

The cool thing with nutrition is that it is really not to difficult.... as a matter of fact when I talk to people about nutrition I find out that they already know what they should be doing, what to eat, what not eat, etc. The hard part is actually doing it!!

People often give us a hard time at the gym when they see the personal trainers coming to work. Most of us are carrying 2-3 bags over our shoulders. We will have our brief case, our workout bag, and then usually a big lunch box or mini cooler full of food.

Planning your day is really the key to having a successful exercise plan. We live in a society of convenience. It is to easy to grab a snack out of a machine or run down to a fast food joint, and fill our bodies with toxic foods high in fat, sodium, and void of good nutrients that our bodies need to function efficiently.

Now, I don't always agree with bodybuilders in terms of training the body, but one thing you cannot deny is their discipline when it comes to nutrition. Bodybuilders literally take there food with them everywhere because they know that to achieve the desired body that they need to compete competitively they need to eat right and often, all the the time.

That same dedication and discipline needs to be applied to the "normal" everyday person as well. Here is where you will need to sit down and devise your own strategy that will work best for you. But, what I would recommend is sitting down Sunday afternoon and plan your meals and snacks for the week. Some of the meals can be pre-cooked on Sunday, stored in Tupperware, and then ready to pull out of the fridge and put into your lunch box.

Taking your lunch will not only save you some money in this tight economy, it will also insure that you have the proper meals and snack available to you so you will not have to resort to making a quick trip to a convenience store or fast food joint!

The take home message here is nutrition and getting in shape is an easy formula, but it is very very hard work!! I work in a gym environment where a lot of us are in very good shape and we work very hard to be that way. I hear people comment all the time that they want to look a certain way, but very few people want to hear that you have to bust your ass to get in great shape and then maintain that. You can look all day for that magic pill but you will never find it!! Nothing replaces discipline and hard work!!

Plan your week, execute your plan, be consistent ,disciplined, and work very hard and you will be successful!

Keep Moving

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Quick Tip

Hey Everyone,
Just a quick tip excerpt from the weight loss program(New You)that I am working on:

"Research shows that one of the most powerful ways to successfully change your eating habits is to keep a daily journal. By recording your food intake and exercise, you keep yourself accountable, and also gives you space to write down how your body feels after eating specific foods."

Keep Moving,

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Do You Eat Naked?

Hey Everyone,
Today I wanted to share with you an article from one of my favorite newsletters that I subscribe to. Hope you all enjoy it as much as I did.
Keep Moving,

"Do You Eat Naked?"

By Todd Durkin, MA, CSCS, NCTMB, Founder of Fitness Quest 10

If I were the average Joe walking down the street, I probably wouldn't care so much about the eating habits of other people. However, as a personal trainer, dedicated and passionate about helping people transform their lives and bodies, I've built my professional life on health, fitness and human performance. This means that the cornerstone of all my work is a balance between proper nutrition and exercise - for me and my family, for my clients and for my team. So, forgive me, but I do care. I care a lot! Here's what got me thinking about your nutrition habits (more than I normally do).
The July/August issue of Fast Company (great magazine) includes an article on Darden Restaurants, owner of Olive Garden, Red Lobster, etc. Darden generated $6.7 billion in revenue last year by feeding 400 million meals in 1,770 restaurants. This is a giant restaurant company! You might be interested to know that even Red Lobster, home of popcorn shrimp and cheese biscuits, has decided to "revitalize" its brand to include what they call "stealth health." In other words, they are adding all new wood-fired grilling plus fresh fish menus reprinted twice daily.
I read this article and had mixed feelings. On the one hand, I said, "I'll believe it when I see it." On the other hand, I said, "That's it people - it's time to wake up and smell the coffee!" Come on folks, do the restaurants have to stop serving up a diet of salt, fat and sugar for us to make better nutritional choices?
The moment of truth has arrived. It's time to 'fess up to the big question. DO YOU EAT NAKED? I do as often as I can. Sorry to disappoint, but when I say, "naked," I mean food that is naked - not buried, covered up or disguised. Food that is fresh and nutritious and... well, naked!
My goal with this month's feature article is to persuade you to examine your eating habits, to say NO! to fast food, soda, processed foods, artificial sweeteners and high fructose corn syrup and to say YES! to a lifestyle of healthy, nutritious and fabulous food. To do this, I'm not going to lecture you about the evil of fried and processed foods. I'm not going to scare you with details of nutrition labels that read like chemistry experiments (and food that probably tastes like one too). I'm not going to quote research about the effects bad food choices can have on your health. No, I've got a better idea.
I'm going to win you over from the dark side by reminding you of what you're missing. I'm not telling. I'm selling... and the timing is great. Who doesn't love summer eating? Go to your local farmer's market or roadside stand and check out the August bounty: tomatoes, corn, zucchini, peaches, cherries, apricots, blueberries, strawberries, figs... and the list goes on. As a guy from the Garden State, I gotta ask, "How can it get any better than Jersey tomatoes and sweet summer corn?"
Being from a large family with eight kids, meal-times were chaotic, and typically, the only things in abundance were kids, noise and food that would fill us up. But summer would eventually arrive, and with it came some of my favorite food and some GREAT FOOD MEMORIES from my childhood. The memory of driving with my dad in his blue Bonneville and pulling into the Red Top Farm Market on Route 70 (it's still there!) will be forever etched in my memory. Dad and I would gather as much as we could carry (and afford) and head home with our bounty. Later, if we were lucky, mom would make fresh strawberry pies...
When I was at The College of William & Mary, a group of us went on retreat to Haiti with Fr. Charlie Kelley, the head of campus ministry at the college. This experience was a powerful one for me for many reasons, but one particularly vivid memory is of the local women with baskets overflowing with exotic fruit they carried on their heads for the five-mile trip back to their homes. They fed their children from these baskets for a week. Years later, Melanie and I spent our honeymoon in Costa Rica. I couldn't possibly count the number of mangoes I ate on that trip. I couldn't get enough then, and I feel the same way now when we visit Hawaii. Tell me there's a breakfast buffet at our hotel, and I'm there for the mangoes and pineapples!
Today, Melanie and I are raising our family with less red meat and white starches than I may have eaten as a kid, and fresh produce is front and center in our meals at home. Just like you, we want to be role models for healthful eating and nutritious food choices so that our kids grow up to be healthy and strong. Nowadays, our naked foods-of-choice might be blueberries and strawberries piled high on morning oatmeal, fruit smoothies we make in our Jack Lalanne Power Juicer, a handful of fresh spinach and other veggies in an egg white omelet or sliced avocados on nearly anything! We eat a lot of fresh fish prepared simply in the oven or on the grill and our frig is always stocked with a big variety of fruits and veggies.
Chris Mohr, a registered dietitian and nutrition expert I have introduced to many of you through this newsletter and my tele-seminars, gives us an easy rule of thumb to use for selecting foods - "the less legs the better!" Brett Klika, our Director of Athletics here at FQ10, recently wrote about the dangers of "Franken-foods" - referring to the chemistry experiments many popular food items are. CLICK HERE to read Part I and CLICK HERE to read Part II of Brett's article. Paula Owens, author of The Power of 4, tells us to eat whole, unprocessed foods preferably organic. Sean Croxton, a nutritionist I have collaborated with on several projects, adamantly abhors all processed foods. I could go on and on. The advice is straightforward and the message is simple. The idea of naked food is just a way to keep us mindful that when we take the best of natural ingredients and cover them with sauce, bury them in layers of fat, salt, sugar and chemicals or process them to death and put them in a bag or a box - we've ruined them. Think about it.
Enjoy the month of August, for all its bounty and joys. Just around the corner are September and October, and I know what that means... acorn squash (almost as good as mangoes), apples, pumpkins... don't get me started! Eat naked. It's a reward in itself.

Peace and love,

Todd Durkin

Todd Durkin, MA, CSCS, is a personal trainer and massage therapist who motivates, educates, and inspires people world-wide. He is the owner of Fitness Quest 10 in San Diego, CA, where his wonderful team focuses on personal training, massage therapy, Pilates, yoga, sports performance training, and nutrition to help transform people's bodies, minds, and spirits. Todd trains dozens of NFL & MLB baseball athletes and provides motivational talks and programs to companies and conferences world-wide. Additionally, Todd is the Head of the Under Armour Performance Training Council. He has appeared in 60 Minutes, on ESPN, the NFL Network, and been featured in Sports Illustrated, Business Week, Prevention, ESPN the Magazine, Men's Health, Men's Fitness, Men's Journal, Stack Magazine, Self, Shape, Fitness, and the NY Times and Washington Post. Todd is the author of 27 DVD's on strength & conditioning, functional fitness, massage/bodywork, and business/personal growth. You can sign up for his FREE award-winning Ezine newsletter, the "TD TIMES", at or

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

MTS of the Week 8/4/2009

The Anniversary Workout!
Well today is my 8 year wedding anniversary. So I thought I would give you all a gift. This is a full body routine emphasizing the pulling movements. It is gaurenteed to to kick your butt!! enjoy

1. Kettle Bell Snatch (3 sets of 10 each arm)
2. Kettle Bell plank row (3 sets of 8 reps each arm)
3. Free Motion (or any cable machine)squat -> row (3 X 12 reps)
4. Free Motion Alternating arm pulldown (3 X 12 reps)
5. Cable diagonal wood chop ( 3 X 12 reps)

Have fun and Keep Moving

Thursday, July 23, 2009

The 60 Rep Workout!!

Hey All,
I created this workout for my client Frank who turned sixty on Wednesday. I like to keep things fresh with a little themed based workout every once in a while.

This is a timed based routine. With each exercise you are trying to complete 60 rep in as short a time as possible. The client is allowed to take a breather if they need (they will)but it should be a very brief breather!! Don't sacrifice form for speed!! Have fun and interchange exercises if you like

The 60 Rep Workout!!
Kettle snatches (40-45 lb)
Barbell push press (45 lb bar)
Wall ball shots (20 lb ball)
TRX or body rows
600 meter concept row (I know, its not 60, but sixty was to short of a distance)

Enjoy and Keep Moving

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Hey Movers and Shakers,
Here is the video I promised. If you attempt any of these exercises, please get proper instruction first. Injuries can occur if you don't know how to handle the kettle bell!

Have fun, and keep moving,

Saturday, July 18, 2009

More KB Pics

Kettle Bell Training 101

Hey Everyone,
Just went through an amazing kettle bell training session with one of our top strength coaches, Brandon Rosin. I am putting together a video which I will post soon. In the mean time enjoy these pictures.

Keep Moving,

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

The "New You"

Hey Everyone,
I gonna keep this post short and sweet. I am recovering from a small surgery that I had last week. The best thing to come out of this surgery it forced me to kick back and do a lot of sitting around last week. This allowed me to almost complete my new weight loss program called the "New You". This is actually a re-creation of a pretty successful weight loss program that we used to run about 7 or 8 years ago. I have been working hard to re-vamp the nutrition program, and completely change the exercise program. So, I am excited that it is almost finished.... I will keep you posted!

Change is coming............ The New You!

Keep moving

Sunday, May 31, 2009

MTS of The Week 5/31/2009

Hey Everyone,
It has been a crazy couple of months for me, but I do have a new workout for you to try. This workout is a circuit progression to prepare you for the Turkish Get-up. You can also watch this instructional video I created that breaks down the Turkish get-up step by step. Watch the video and enjoy the workout.
Keep moving,

KB Turkish Get up Circuit progression

Bar sit up overhead reach, 12 lb bar
KB plank row
KB swings
Lunge w/ MB rotation
KB Snatch
KB windmill
KB Front squat
KB Turkish get-up

Sunday, April 19, 2009

The Water Pots

The Water Pots

Unknown Author

A water bearer had two large pots, each hung on the ends of a pole,
which she carried across her neck.

One of the pots had a crack in it while the other pot was perfect and always delivered a full portion of water. At the end of the long walk from the stream to the house, the cracked pot arrived only half full.

For a full two years this went on daily, with the woman bringing home
only one and a half pots of water.

Of course, the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishments. But the poor cracked pot was ashamed of its own imperfection, and miserable that it could only do half of what it had been made to do.

After 2 years of what it perceived to be bitter failure,
it spoke to the water bearer one day by the stream.

"I am ashamed of myself, because this crack in my side causes water to leak out
all the way back to your house."

The water bearer smiled, "Did you notice that there are
flowers on your side of the path, but not on the other pot's side?

That's because I have always known about your flaw, so I planted flower seeds on your side of the path, and every day while we walk back, you water them."
"For two years I have been able to pick these beautiful flowers to decorate the table." Without you being just the way you are, there would not be this beauty to grace the house."


Each of us has our own unique flaw…
But it's the cracks and flaws we each have that make
our lives together so very interesting and rewarding.

You've just got to take each person for what they are
and look for the good in them.

To all of my crackpot friends,
have a great day and remember to smell the flowers,
on your side of the path.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Great Retention article

Well, March has been a crazy Month for me. As I wrote about in an earlier blog I just championed a change in new personal training software. I had to train 45 trainer, 20 sales counselors on the use of the new system, and assist with the transfer of 500+ client files into the new system!!...... all that on top of planning programs and training my own clients, being an active husband and father.... Yeah, it s been crazy

So, all that being said, I have not been able to blog about anything for a couple of weeks now. What have for you today is a great article I found written by Todd Durkin, I met him last year at the IHRSA convention. He is a former NFL quarterback and a great businessman and educator in the fitness industry. What I like about this article is that although it is written for the health and fitness professional, it really applies to everybody in the business world. I hope you all enjoy it as much as I did. If so, drop him an email and let him know.

"Client Retention: Improving Revenues by Increasing the Customer Experience"
by Todd Durkin

The million dollar question is how you can build a business by keeping all your existing customers and clients happy as you grow your business instrumentally. A great example is Starbucks. They do an excellent job developing a positive customer experience for their “cronies.” Their customers come back time and time again for a coffee or drink that often costs double that of other coffee houses. Why is it that they have developed such a devoted following amongst their followers? I believe their culture, their environment, their customer service, and “their experience” drives a devoted following.

In the fitness business, building a clientele often takes a lot of time, energy, and money. Because most trainers, studios, and health clubs typically don’t have large marketing advertising budgets, it is even more important that we focus on retaining clients once we have them also. There are several measures to help improve value to our clients so that we can consistently deliver an excellent client experience and have loyal clients for a long-time. By adhering to the following suggestions, it will help develop a unique culture and extraordinary customer experience. Here are some suggestions to enhance your business and keep happy clients coming back for more and more:

• Develop & know your unique culture; What is it?
a. Friendly
b. Fun
c. Professional
d. Personal
e. Non-intimidating
f. Service-oriented
g. Clean & pristine
h. Energetic & Positive

• Create “Great” sessions every time; whether it’s a client’s first session, 18th session, or their 40th session in a package of 48, make every session count. Ways you can do this include:
1. Keep your energy in tune with your client(s) at all times2. Be a great listener; listen to your clients needs3. Never bring a “bad” day outside of the office into your sessions4. Assess your clients and measure periodically5. Set goals with your clients (if they are open to being held accountable)6. Prepare for all your sessions and be ready for each of them7. Meet & exceed client expectations8. Educate, motivate, and inspire your clients9. Challenge your clients10. Manually stretch your clients when finish

• Connect with clients more frequently than your scheduled sessions. You can do this by:
1. Develop a newsletter (ie. 1 x per week, 1 x per month, or 1 x per quarter); Keep it simple in the beginning and deliver great content (education & motivation)2. Email your clients periodically; CONNECT with them3. Spot check your clients with random phone calls occasionally
• Communicate to your clients

1. YOU communicate to your clients if you have a change in your schedule. You take ownership of any changes and don’t expect front desk or management to handle it for you.2. YOU communicate to your clients if you are going on vacation, having another trainer cover one of your sessions, you are changing your schedule, your rates, etc. You take ownership of any changes and don’t expect front desk or management to handle it for you.3. If a client’s sessions are up, YOU MUST communicate this to them. If you are uncomfortable with speaking finances to them for some reason (You NEED to work on this), than hand them a nice note in an envelope and let them know there sessions are up and it is time to renew.4. Ask for feedback from your clients periodically. Feedback is the breakfast of champions. To simply ask “Is there anything I can be doing differently to help you” goes a long way in letting clients know that you are genuinely interested in helping them.

• Great Customer Service:
1. Always be on time for a session. Don’t have clients waiting for you!2. Greet your clients by name every time3. Develop a referral system to track when your clients refer in friends or family4. Thank your clients5. Send hand-written birthday cards6. “Feature Clients” in your newsletter or on bulletin board. We all like to be acknowledged!7. The customer isn’t always right. Just make them feel that way!8. Don’t call your clients and try to juggle around their schedules based on your convenience the day of a session. That means if you have a 3 hour break in the day, than you have a 3 hour break. It’s about THEM, not YOU. Without clients, no business! Utilize your “down” time and take advantage of gaps in your schedule.9. If you have only one session on the books for the day, make it the BEST session ever. I still hear of trainers and massage therapists that “don’t want to come in for just 1 session.” By golly, thank God you have 1 session and use it as an opportunity to get more sessions. 10. Provide clients with educational handouts periodically11. Treat every client like you would treat your mother12. “Pamper” them; I am not saying baby them. I am saying spoil them with great customer service.

• Make your Business a “Home away from Home”; You can attain this by doing things such as
1. Offer social activities (i.e. Softball games, hiking, ski trips, retreats, trips, etc.)2. Mixers or Parties (Grand-opening party, anniversary of business, etc.)3. Make the environment comfortable, clean, and encourage socialization.
Remember the costs of trying to trying to find new clients isn’t cheap. It’s far less expensive and far more powerful to focus on internal marketing and use your existing clientele to help build your business. Although you most likely have external marketing campaigns going on (i.e., newspapers, websites, TV, radio, direct mail, etc.), internal marketing is so effective as it will help use your clients to become your own “marketeers.” Think about it, when was the last time you saw a Starbucks ad or saw them advertise anything outside of their doors? Never!!!
Make your fitness business the talk of the town. Focus on internal marketing strategies to not only retain existing clients, but to grow your business from their raving to your community. It is said that 20% of your clients do 80% of your business. Keep 100% focus on your clients and never take an experience with them for granted. Your existing clientele is way too valuable and you can’t afford to lose one of them. Treat every one of them as they were your first or your last client ever in your business. With consistent, superior customer service, a positive culture that elicits great energy, solid communication with your clients and staff, and genuine passion and concern for one’s health and fitness, you can be assured of delivering a great customer experience. And with a great customer experience, you can build a great brand.

Todd Durkin, MA, CSCS, is a personal trainer & massage therapist who motivates, educates, and inspires people world-wide. He is the owner of Fitness Quest 10 in San Diego, CA, where his wonderful team focuses on personal training, massage therapy, Pilates, yoga, and nutrition to help transform people’s bodies, minds, and spirits. Todd trains dozens of NFL & MLB baseball athletes and provides motivational talks and programs to companies and conferences world-wide. Additionally, Todd is the Head of the Under Armour Performance Training Council. He has appeared in 60 Minutes and been featured in Sports Illustrated, Business Week, Prevention, ESPN the Magazine, Self, Shape, and the NY Times and Washington Post. You can sign up for his FREE award-winning Ezine newsletter, the “TD TIMES”, at or

Friday, March 13, 2009

Staying motivated in a busy life

Hey everybody,
Hope everybody has been doing well. It is about that time when new years resolutions start to fade away........ Don't let it happen to you!!!..........Stay positive, Stay focused, don't be discouraged if you are not seeing you goals come to life yet, give it time! With consistency success is inevitable!

I have been very busy lately as we are in the process of converting to a new personal training software, so I apologize for not posting any new videos or blogs........... but stay tuned!!!

I wanted to leave you with a few of my favorite quotes to keep you motivated...

Stay Strong and Keep Moving!

“Create your future, nothing can replace hard work, dedication, and a goal of excellence” Socotto

"Five frogs are sitting on a log. Four decide to jump off. How many are left? ......Answer: five. Why?

Because there's a difference between deciding and doing."

Mark L. Feldman & Michael F. Spratt in 'Five Frogs on a Log'

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

P90X Video Blog Review

Hey Everybody,
A friend of mine asked me for my thoughts on the P90X training program, and more specifically, he asked my about what they call "muscle confusion". I have actually been asked this question a lot, so, I decided to make a video blog entry to answer his question and to give my opinion on the P90X program. So here is the link, hope this helps.
Keep Moving,

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Random Thoughts

OK, So I am a bit of a quote geek. I love to use them as motivation to get a point across. I have them attached to the closing of my emails. And every time I make an original one, or come across one that stands out to me, I write them down. Here are a few I really like. I hope you like them and I hope they speak to you like they speak to me.

Life is Motion

Avoiding the phrase “I don’t have time...”, will soon help you to realize that you do have the time needed for just about anything you choose to accomplish in life.
-Bo Bennett, "Year to Success"

Our lives are not determined by what happens to us but by how we react to what happens, not by what life brings to us, but by the attitude we bring to life. A positive attitude causes a chain reaction of positive thoughts, events, and outcomes. It is a catalyst, a spark that creates extraordinary results.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Life is Motion...Enjoy it outside!

Just a couple random thoughts to talk about tonight.

I just returned from a nice little mini vacation in North Carolina. We started in Hendersonville, and made trips to Asheville, and then Boone to do a little tubing on the not so fresh snow..... Anyways, we had the opportunity to go out for a nice hike. And it was just a nice reminder of how nice spending some time in nature can be and how easy it can be to get exercise no matter where you are.

My clients travel frequently and I always make it a point to recommend exercises they can do no matter where they are. You don't need a nice gym with fancy equipment to get a good exercise session in. As a matter of fact, my new clients don't even touch a weight until they have good control of their body first. And everyone of them is surprised to see and feel just how sore they can be by just using body weight as a modality.

Like I said, just some random thoughts. But just remember it is amazing how beautiful and physically rewarding a simple hike through the woods can be. Take advantage of the cooler weather and get outside and get some exercise.

I have just posted a new video on youtube. "Turkish Get-Up. Dissecting the Turkish get-up". I will get the link posted soon.

Triathlon season is right around the corner. i will be posting a beginners training program for free soon. Check my website soon for further details.

Keep Moving

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Nutrition made easy!!

Tonight I am going to keep it short and sweet! So, I just returned from a "Perform Better, Learn-By-Doing" seminar. I learned a lot of great information, but the one thing I wanted to share with you is a very basic nutrition tip from Chad Waterbury, then adapted by Mike Boyle.

Mike brought up a good point in his presentation and I agree with him 100% because I hear the same thing all the time. He said "everybody know about good nutrition, its just most people don't do it"

A quick and easy tip from Chad: "Eat fruits, vegetables, and lean protein. Then I tell them to take fish oil"..... That's it! I loved it. Quick, easy, and every time you sit down to eat do just that. Nothing more, nothing less.

Mike went on to say: "Avoid grain like its poison, grain is the root to all fat evil". What most people don't realize is that "corn is a grain, not a vegetable. It is also the number one calorie source in America . Worse than corn is high fructose corn syrup"

So, keep it simple. Every time you eat be sure you are getting plenty of fruits, vegetable and lean protein. And, limit you grains. Also, try to limit or avoid processed white starchy foods.

Thanks Mike for a great presentation.
Keep Moving!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Stop the excuses......start moving!

So, the other day I had an interesting conversation with a client. He asked me why is it that not as many people are wearing Body Buggs any more? (a body bugg is a device that resembles an MP3 player, which records activity and calories burned, you may have seen it on "the biggest loser") He then goes on to say that, when he borrowed mine that it did not do much good for him...." all it told me was that I had a slow metabolism"

So, why is this statement interesting? Because, in his mind he now has an excuse to why he really doesn't have to eat right or exercise!..... "My metabolism is slow, and there is nothing I can do about it"....... "I am very active......."...... wait a second, your active? One of the nice things about the body bugg is that I can view his activity levels through out the day. Long story short, is that I am more active in about 2 hours than he is in his whole day. Most people in our society would be surprised to see just how inactive they actually are.

The story above is very common. People can find five excuses to why they can't do something, but they can't find one reason to why they should do something...... and that drives me crazy! Americans are more over weight then ever!, people have more diseases now then ever! Diabetes has become a huge problem in our youth because of the poor eating habits and lack of physical activity...... this kills me!

The moral of the story is STOP making excuses and start taking action. Even if my clients Basel metabolic rate was slower than normal, there are so many things that can be done to improve this. Like increase muscle mass, increase the frequency of your meals and decrease the overall portion size at the same time..... these are just a few.

Next time you are about to do something and you come up with a good reason to why you can't do it, remember...... a reason is just another excuse...... be strong, be disciplined, be determined! STOP making excuses!.... let me say that again. STOP making excuses

One thing nobody can take away from us is our ability to make a choice......the choice is yours.....chose your attitude!.........make good choices!

Ahhhh....I feel much better now that I have vented a little. Thanks for listening.

Life is motion.....Keep moving.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

MTS of the week 1/17/2009

A1 BOSU push-up with bounce (video will be up soon)
A2 Life fitness single arm chest press
B1 Life fitness back lunge single row
B2 Box jumps (high as possible)
C1 Free motion plank shoulder extension pulls (video will be up soon)
C2 Free motion push-ups
D Free Motion Pec fly
E Machine lat pulldown

Saturday, January 17, 2009


Hey Everyone,
Welcome to the MTSfitness blog.

The goal of my blog is to help answer the many questions asked of me on daily basis regarding health, fitness, injury rehabilitation, sports performance, nutrition, etc....

Please feel free to submit any questions you would like answered on the above listed topics. I will do my best to answer any questions that I can.

Also, check out for more information on health, fitness, personal training, and sports performance.

Life is Motion
Scott Larkin, ATC, CSCS

"Life Is Motion"

"Life Is Motion"
Turkish Get Up