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We support beautifully ordinary people to achieve extra-ordinary results
"NOTHING HAPPENS UNTIL SOMETHING STARTS MOVING." - ALBERT EINSTEIN
Welcome to Active Coach
To Active Coach! It's good to have you on our team! Now you have signed up with the Active Coach Family you are in great danger of having too much fun, whilst training smart and becoming the best you can be. Are you excited? We definitely are and we want to thank you for letting us be part of your journey to become incredibly happy!
Support and motivation for YOU You're now supported by our whole team who will provide you the motivation and accountability you need to deal with any problems you may face in pursuing your goals!
An experienced team in YOUR 'corner' You’ll work with our core team of highly experienced coaches. All of our coaches are employed directly by us, which means you can depend on the same level of expertise and support at every session.
We're here for YOU You’re the reason we’re here. We want you to come regularly, enjoy your sessions, get results, and build a long-term relationship with your fitness. Nothing else matters.
We'll get you the result you deserve The people who join Active Coach are just like YOU, they want to look, feel and live better. Our programmes are geared around YOUR personal goals. Stick with it, and you’ll get the results that you came for.
Let the FUN begin! Your Active Coach Team
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Welcome to Active Coach
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THE 5 PILLARS OF ACTIVE COACH SUCCESS Our Active Coach programme is based upon five foundational pillars, that together support a BALANCED lifestyle. Balance is so important; we don't want to try to turn you into a chicken and broccoli eating social recluse. Active Coach is so much more than 'just' a workout a couple of times a week. Do misinterpret this, will certainly help, but, on it’s own, this is not going to reverse poor health or create much traction towards your bigger health and fitness goals. There are 168 hours in a week and our aim on the Active Coach programme is give you the tools and support to allow you to focus, as much on the hours away from the gym, as those when you are with us. The key to lasting well-being is to incorporate the 5 pillars
Over the course of your time with us as an Active Coach client, you will hear use talk a lot about sleep. We really cannot over-state just how critical sleep is to your overall wellbeing and to the achievement of your goals. You can miss a bit of sleep and “get by”, but do it too regularly and it will catch up and bite you hard on the arse.
This highlights the requirement to provide the body with high quality nutrients that will promote growth and repair following exercise, provide log-lasting energy, make the correct calorie intake easier to control and promote overall good health.
Move: Notice the emphasis is not solely on exercise, as your ultimate success will result from far more than a few well constructed workouts at the gym. As a client of Active Coach, we will be helping you uncover all the opportunities you have each day to move more, wherever you are.
Welcome to Active Coach
If we can focus on 90% adherence to good fuel, movement and sleep, then 10% where you relax and unwind will have little detrimental impact on your progress. Relax, also reminds us that we should not take our health and fitness goals so seriously that we get “weird”. Enjoy well-earned time with friends and family, indulge from time to time to reduce cravings, have one to many beers every so often. Don’t isolate yourself from everyone around you because your health and fitness habits are so rigid. Don’t become a fitness bore! -6-
To really learn, you have to be prepared to “unlearn” what you think you know. Something called confirmation bias, encourages us to look for unchallenging information, or put another way, information that supports the beliefs we already have. For example, this could be an ingrained belief that cutting fat from your diet or going on a “low fat”, is the only real way you will lose weight. We hope to be able to provide you with valuable information that will challenge what you “think” you know and maybe encourage you to take action. As Socrates said: “I cannot teach anybody anything. I can only make them think.”
We love habits! And I’ll quickly tell you why. Our willpower is a limited resource. We only have so much, and it all comes from the same place. It’s not like we have seperate pots of willpower for our job, willpower for our kids, willpower for relationships, willpower for exercise, willpower for diet, etc. However, we do have this amazing inbuilt ability to remove willpower as the main resource. It’s called habits! Do you ever remember how hard it was to brush your teeth as a child? Well, how hard is it now? You’ve built up the habit with years of practice and now it’s just part of who you are. No-one wants to be the guy with smelly breath after all! So, we have come up with 7 Core Habits, that we believe are crucial to long term success; and if we can stop relying solely on willpower to complete these tasks daily, long term success is going to be a breeze.
Our Core Habits Seek opportunities to move Eat more colourful veg Rest & Recover....repeat Eat more protein Be grateful each day Drink more water Pay it forward We will focus on just one habit for 2 weeks
Simple Steps to Your Success! Welcome to Active Coach
Have Belief in You! The biggest thing that stands in the way of people changing themselves for the better is themselves. For too long many people have been stuck in the same cycle of not achieving what they deserve, and all they remember is the times they failed, choosing to neglect all the small wins they had. This is enough to break anybody’s spirit and make them believe that they can’t do anything. The biggest and first step to take is having faith in yourself, this time it is different and this time you are going to do it. _____________________________ Challenge 1: Write down on a Post it note a couple of words reminding you that you believe in yourself and you can do it. Place it somewhere you will see it everyday.
Ditch The Fads We’ve all seen the latest hip cool diets from the celebrity magazines and how they work wonders for everybody in a short period of time. Yes they may work in the short term, but realistically they can’t be long term solutions to problems or you wouldn’t be here!! The changes you are going to make this time around are going to change your life forever, it’s going to be a long process of finding the best way to get the results you want. _____________________________ Challenge 2: Write down every fad diet you have ever tried, and then next to it write down how it made you feel. Did it make you feel good? Why did you stop?
Surround Yourself with People who Support You The biggest thing that stands in the way of people changing themselves for the better is themselves. For too long many people have been stuck in the same cycle of not achieving what they deserve, and all they remember is the times they failed, choosing to neglect all the small wins they had. This is enough to break anybody’s spirit and make them believe that they can’t do anything. The biggest and first step to take is having faith in yourself, this time it is different and this time you are going to do it. _____________________________ Challenge 3: Write down 3 people who are important to you and you want to take on this journey with you.
Start With One Small Habit at a Time The biggest reason that people don’t reach their goals is they bite off more than they can chew to start with. Making changes can be a challenge and, too much at once, can overwhelm even the strongest of people, leading to them throwing in the towel and giving up. _____________________________ Challenge 4: Write down a small change you are going to make this week, then make that change. In two weeks’ time, if you’ve successfully made this change, write down the next one you are going to make. We can help you with this!!
Ditch the scales The scales lie! They hide the progress you’ve made and can leave you feeling low. The best gauges are how you feel and what you see in the mirror. Are you feeling more energized and happier, do you feel like you can do more things, do you feel healthier? This is way more important than a number that can be misleading! ____________________________ Challenge 5: That set of scales that lurk in the bathroom, and have brought you more disappointment than they have joy; THROW THEM OUT (or if you’re not quite ready for that, bury them in the bottom of your wardrobe)
Have a Plan If you ask anybody who has been successful at anything they’ll tell you they had a plan. They worked out where they were, worked out where they wanted to be, and then worked out how they were going to get there (we can help with this). Having a plan, takes the guessing out of it, and makes the journey that much easier. _____________________________ Challenge 6: Let’s do this and let’s have fun!!
Enjoy the food you eat
Here at Active Coach we prefer a flexible approach to nutrition, focusing on the areas that have the biggest impact This allows you to have as much autonomy in your diet as possible, whilst still achieving your goals. We focus on being inclusive rather than exclusive. Worrying that bad foods will derail your progress is all too common, but understanding that there are no bad foods (omitting medical conditions), just bad diets, allows your diet to be as personalized as possible.
Welcome to Active Coach
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Diet: Aim to get 80% of your intake from nutrient dense foods you like the taste of. 10% from questionable junk food you like and 10% blatant junk food you love.
But don't worry, this doesn't mean we need to track calories for the rest of our lives, it just means we need to understand their importance. We will work out the right amount for you and help you achieve it!
Protein: Calories: Calories, whether we like it or not, are the most important factor when it comes to weight management. If we eat more than we use, we will put on weight, and if we eat less we will lose it. For this reason, this is our most important variable when it comes to nutrition. It doesn't matter if the food is healthy, gluten-free, organic or magic (well maybe if itâ€™s magic it does!) food contains calories, which regulates our weight loss success.
Our muscle tissue is made up of protein, and we need it in our diet to ensure we can optimally build new muscle tissue, which is a fundamental need when it comes to your goals. Ensuring adequate quantities is therefore a crucial part of our dietary approach. Don't worry though, together we will work out the amount you need and help you achieve it. High protein foods include: Poultry, red meat, fish, other meat sources, eggs, Greek/ Icelandic yogurt, low fat cheeses, protein powder, Quorn, tofu. Marketed high protein foods that really aren't! Quinoa, oats, nuts!
Fats: Fats, like protein, are essential for humans. They play a role in the make up of cells and proper hormonal function. A good variety is important here, so make an effort to try and pick different sources throughout your week. Also, thereâ€™s no need to fear saturated fats, but aim to include trans-fats amongst your 10% of blatant junk food. Good sources include: Nuts, nut butters, coconut/olive/ rapeseed oils, oily fish, fatty cuts of meat, avocado and butter.
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Carbohydrate: Although we don't have any essential need for carbohydrate, theyâ€™re our preferred energy source, and they help to fuel training performance. Something thatâ€™s very important when it comes to long term success, as after all, training is the main stimulus we provide to our bodies to adapt. They also taste great! Good sources include: Rice, pasta, bread, oats, beans (yes baked too!), cereal, potato, fruit, quinoa, lentils.
When to eat:
This one is simple, eat when you want to eat. Breakfast is not magic; you don't have to eat it. Eating in the evening will not prevent you loosing fat. Eat before you train if you want to, don't if it makes you feel sick. The choice is yours and this will vary from person to person.
How many times should I eat a day?: Like when to eat, this is mainly your choice. However, try to spread your protein intake out across the day. Aim to get at least 2 separate servings of protein throughout the day, separated by 3-5 hours.
Welcome to Active Coach
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Enjoy the food you eat Water: Water is extremely important for maintaining good health, but it will also help keep you full, so you’ll end up eating slightly fewer calories. It may also help if you suffer from headaches or pains. Aim to get about 1L/25kg, so a 75kg woman will need 3L.
Fibre: Hitting your fibre intake is important for a number of reasons. It helps keep us full, aids bowel movements and certain types actually help feed the micro-organisms that live in our gut! As a general rule of thumb, try to get 10g/1000 calories, with a minimum of 18g/day.
Fruit: Fruit is packed full of vitamins & minerals, its filling and tastes great! There’s nothing to fear when it comes to fruit, no matter what the latest fad will say. Aim for a variety if possible.
Liquid calories: If you choose to consume some calories through a drink, bear in mind it will not fill you up as much as eating the same amount of food will. However, they can be very convenient, for example a protein shake.
Protein shakes: Protein powder, such as whey, is a fantastic source of protein, and can be very convenient and help you achieve your daily protein goals. However, there’s nothing special about them. If you’d rather eat your protein, that’s a great idea too.
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Welcome to MyFitnessPal If you really want to undestand what you are consuming, then you have to track it
Welcome to Active Coach
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Setting Your Macronutrient Goals
1. On home press more
4. Input calories (we'll help you work out this number)
5. Set percentages (again we'll help with these percentages)
3. Calories and Macronutrient goals
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Adding Food To Your Diary
1. Once more, click on the plus sign
2. Click on the "food" button
3. Select your meal
4. You can search for any food in the world. You can even describe where you got the food from, such as Starbucks. Or you can click the Barcode symbol to scan from food
5. Set percentages (again we'll help with these percentages)
6. A summary page with the food info will appear, click the tick at the top and it will be added to your food diary
Welcome to Active Coach
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Check Out Your Nutritional Info
1. Click the calories remaining box at the top of your home page
2. Click the "nutrition" button
3. This displays todays "macros"
Make sure your exercise and step counting is turned off, as we will account for these this in your calories targets
1. On the home screen, press "more"
2. Click "steps"
3. Make sure you select "Don't track steps"
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Finding your workout in Fitbot
1. On the home screen, ensure that you are looking at "upcoming" workouts and then select "view details" to see the workout for the day
2. This screen will now display the workout, showing sets, reps and a demo video for each exercise
4. After each superset, in the results box you enter the sets, reps and weight you achieved during a set. Welcome to Active Coach
5. When you view past workouts, you can see the number of sets, reps and weight achieved in the last workout - 18 -
3. Where two exercises are labelled as A1 and A2, or B1 and B2, this means you perform them as a superset (see fitness lingo section)
Reviewing your Profile InformationÂ in Fitbot
1. Click on the profile button to view the information entered by either you or your Coach
2. The metrics section will display key measures of you progress and can be entered by you and your Coach.
4. Press the "nutrition" button and your macro targets will be displayed
5. Press the "message" button and you can communicate with your coach - 19 -
3. Any metric can be viewed individually as a graph, which will show progress over time
How to Book Sessions Using Fitsense
1. After you have logged in to our Fitsense app, select "book"
2. Your can now choose either to and choose either "book by date" or "book by activity".
4. If you select "book by date", you will see all the sessions for the week, from which you can book
5. Select your session and then press "confirm" to book your place
Welcome to Active Coach
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3. If you choose "book by date", select Active Coach to see the sessions for the coming week
Understanding the Fitness Lingo! Why are we going to cover all this fitness lingo, surely you can just get by without. Correct, you certainly can, but part of our own goal as your coaches is to educate you and help you become as informed and self-reliant as possible. There is a saying that, “you can give a man a fish and he will eat for a day, but if give a man a rod he can catch his own fish and eat for a lifetime”. Our Active Coach goal is to give you the “rod”, (does that sound a bit rude? …should I of phrased that differently?) Anyway, so to continue, this way we can help you sustain a lifetime of fitness and wellbeing. REPS Reps is short for repetition and mean a single execution of an exercise. So when you move from the start position of the exercise to the end position of the exercise.
COMPOUND EXERCISE A compound exercise is a movement where more than two joints move during the exercise, such as a squat where the knee and hip joints both bend as you lower down, or a shoulder press where both the elbow TIME UNDER TENSION and shoulder joints move as you Time under tension is the duration in press up. Compound lift will form a seconds that your muscles must large part of your Active Coach work to control a weight during a set. programme, as they work many To work out the time under tempo, muscle groups at the same time. you simply multiply the tempo of This has the benefit of keeping the each repetition by the number of heart rate elevated during your reps. So for example, if you perform workouts, burning more calories, 8 repetitions of a bicep curl with a achieving greater results in less time tempo of 4121, the tempo duration is and mimicking movements that you 4+1+2+1=8, which we then multiply tend to perform in everyday life. by the 8 repetitions, so 8 x 8 = 64 These benefits will all help you seconds. So the total time you bicep increase your metabolism, which in is under tension during the set is 64 tone leads to lasting fat loss and seconds. There is no strict right or tone. Keep lifting! wrong duration for time under tension, but we will typically look for SUPERSETS a TUT of about 60 seconds per set in In our Active Coach programme, we love supersets. They allow you to your Active Coach strength perform the greatest volume of work component. in your one hour training session. In REST a superset, we tend to start you off Your rest is simply the time you by pairing non-competing movement pause between the end of one set patterns, such as a squat and an and the start of the next. If your rest upper body pull. You perform a set period is too short, you will still be of the squat exercise, then a set of too fatigued from the last set to the upper body pull exercise, one perform the reps in the following set after the other with no rest. When with control and sound technique. you have rested briefly, you would This would risk injury and limit then perform another set of each as proper range of movement. Equally, before and so on, until your if you wait too long between sets, prescribed sets and reps are the muscle will fully recover and it complete. Look at you heart rate at will be difficult to reach a point of the end of a well-performed accumulated stress on the muscle superset and you’ll know you’re where it has been stressed enough, training hard. which leads to muscle growth and fat burning. - 21 -
SETS A set is a group of consecutive repetitions. For example, you can say, “I did two sets of ten reps on the chest press.” This means that you did ten consecutive chest presses, rested, and then did another ten chest presses. . TEMPO Tempo is the speed at which you lift and lower a weight during an exercise. Tempo can dramatically impact the intensity of the exercise, making it harder or easier. The slower the tempo, the longer the muscles will have to work to manage and control the weight. This length of time is called time under tension (see below). In the fitness world, tempo is indictaed by a four digit number such as 4121. The first number is the time taken to lower the weight (in seconds), the next number is the time the weight or move is held in the bottom position, the third number is the time taken to lift the weight and the final number is the time taken to hold the weight or move at the top, before starting another rep. TIME
CONCENTRIC CONTRACTION A concentric contraction occurs when you shorten a muscle to “lift” a weight during a rep. Think of a bicep curl, where the bicep muscle at the front of the upper arm, shortens to bend the elbow, bringing the weight closer up to your shoulder. Concentric contractions tend to be performed with a fast, powerful but controlled movement.
ISOLATION EXERCISE These are exercises that focus on one specific muscle group, or area of the body. Only one joint in the body will tend to move during these exercises. Once again, back to the poor old bicep curl to provide an example; this is a classic isolation exercise, focusing on the twin heads of the bicep muscle at the front of the arm. Loved by every guy, looking to fill out their t-shirt, the only joint that moves is the elbow joint and the primary focus is the target the bicep. Ladies often tend to target the tricep muscle on the rear of the arm in an attempt to tone up the arms and reduce “batwings”. Once again classic isolation exercises are often perform to target this muscle. Isolation exercises a have a place in your workout, but the bulk of your work should come from compound movements. We will programme these movements into your Active Coach programmes as you progress, because we know they are important to you…and if we don’t programme them in, you will do them anyway!
Welcome to Active Coach
ECCENTRIC CONTRACTION An eccentric contraction is the opposite movement to the concentric contraction. Essentially it is the lowering of the weight against gravity, as the working muscles lengthen, to control the weight as it lowers during a rep. Once again, if you consider the bicep curl, the weight is lowered under control from the shoulder back to the end point where the arm is extended at the end of the rep. In the fitness world, eccentrics are also known as negative contractions. They are often performed at a slower tempo to the concentric movements and referred to as negatives. An eccentric contraction could often be performed over a 4 second duration during a lift. However this may lead to more muscle soreness the next day. ISOMETRIC CONTRACTION An isometric contraction refers to a muscle contraction where the muscles neither shorten, nor lengthen and no joint moves. An example of this would be a plank, where the muscles of the core are working to maintain a stable neutral spine position. These movements tend to occur frequently when training the core. We will programme them Active Coach sessions for core workouts. Remember the old pictures of Charles Atlas, standing on the beach with his hands clasped in as if he was trying to pull them apart, proclaiming to your lads “don’t get the sand kicked in your face any more”, well that was isometric contraction.
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DOMS Delayed onset muscle soreness. It is also worth noting that the eccentric contraction is 10-20 percent stronger than the concentric. This is why, when learning chip ups, you are often advised to stand on a box, grasp the bar and start at the top of the chin up, by simply lowering yourself down against gravity, then push yourself back up on the box, or step to bring your self back up top the bar. So there is no concentric movement, only eccentric lowering RANGE OF MOTION The range of motion is the degree through which each joint moves during a repetition or movement. Ideally, we are trying to improve range of motion where it is restricted or limitied. When you perform an exercise you want the move with the greatest range of pain free movement available to you, so that you build up strength through the entire range of each joints movement. You need to be careful how much wright you place on certain joints during movements, to ensure that you don’t overload them dangerously, but leave this to us, this is what we do as part of your Active Coach programming.
“The gym should be attacked with joy and fierceness” – Arnold Schwarzenegger
Frequently Asked Questions We understand that, in life, everything does not always follow the path you expected. Kids get sick and you have to stay at home with them, birthdays seem to come and go with increasing regularity and there is ALWAYS cake, work pressures peak during the year increasing your stress levels and then even when everything seems to be going great, you get stuck in unexpected traffic on the way to the gym. Don't worry, we get it! Here below we have covered some of the common questions we seem to get asked most frequently. Please do just contact us if you still have a query that we haven't covered off here.
What if I am running late: Get a move on! Even if you are running late, we will try our best to get you warmed up quickly, so you can join everyone else in the workout. If you are more than 10 minutes late, then have a warm up and see if there is space on the next session.
What if I have aches, pains or injuries:
What if I want to cancel a session: Ideally we would ask you to give at least 24 hours notice if you need to cancel a session booking. This will allow someone else to take up your space. However, we appreciate that sometimes stuff just happens and you can give this notice; please at least just let us know that you won't be showing up. We will miss you!
Do I have to be fit for Active Coach: Definitely not! Our Active Coach clients vary in age and fitness level. You’ll see some super-fit people here; if you didn't, we wouldn't be doing our job very well. However, just like YOU, they all started somewhere. Your fitness goal is unique to you. We’ll assess your current level, personalise your programme and take it at a pace that works for you.
Honestly, we'd be surprised if you didn't have a few aches, especially during the first few weeks, it's totally normal. Push through the aches, they'll soon disappear. If there is any pain, let your coach know, we can change thing to eliminate this. Injuries; well many of our clients come to us with injuries or life-related issues like joint niggles, back pain and post-baby abs. We’re not physiotherapists, but the team is highly experienced in creating programmes that work with, and ultimately improve, a wide range of conditions.
What if I don't get results: This won't happen, but we understand that you may have tried things before, that didn't work and your are naturally worried or sceptical. No problem! We offer a 100% Action Takers Guarantee. If you have put in the effort and are getting no results, we'll be amazed, but we will refund your investment.
How do I contact my coach: If your query is workout or nutrition related, then definitely contact your coach via the Fitbot app. It is super easy and you will be a quick response. Your message will go directly to your Accountability Coach. For general questions, try our private Facebook Group.
"Do something today, your future self will thank you for" - 23 -
Find out where you journey to a 'new you' begins Stevenage: Active Coach Active Fitness Club North Road Stevenage Herts SG1 4BB Tel: 01438 358071
Luton: Active Coach Active Fitness Club Wigmore Park Centre Luton Beds LU2 9XG Tel: 01582 948419
Burnham: Active Coach Active Fitness Club Wymers Wood Road Burnham Bucks SL2 Tel: 01628 290273