Honestly, I do feel I've been let out into the wild. I've been held for the last 12 weeks in a sanctuary they call 'Ultimate Performance'. It's this weird place full of super professional personal trainers, packed with knowledge to train and educate you so you're ready to take on the world as a healthy, confident human being with new muscles.

Okay, so I may be getting lost in my imagination (a little) but that's pretty much what it feels like. The main reason I've never managed to get the results I've achieved through UP is because I had no clue. I thought I was being healthy (when I felt like it) but healthy when you have no clue is very different to actually being healthy and then when it came to the training side of things…there was the odd burst of going to some kind of gym class, running (if you can call it that) around streets or having several epiphanies of being the next professional boxer, climber…(the list goes on). Let's just say I wasn't getting very far and soon lacked the motivation to do anything at all.

Now I've been set free (although I've not gone very far, I do work here after all) I can now use these very handy tools to feed myself correctly, to maintain the body I worked my arse off for and to use all of that to enjoy, well…life :).

Feeding the Beast (Me)

There is a myth that to lose body fat (we don't say 'lose weight' at UP, the scales are never the full story) you need to starve yourself. If you're ever thinking of doing that, it's not good for you so don't, not even a little bit. I actually ate 4-5 meals a day, more than I had ever eaten before but of course, that's not 4-5 meals of whatever you fancy, there's a bit of thinking that goes into this health malarkey.

UP's mascot

 

Now I've been taught about carbs (genuinely didn't know what that meant before UP, rather embarrassing I know), macros (thought it was an outlet) and calories (again, no clue), I actually know how to feed myself. During my 12 weeks, the aim was to get as lean as possible so I would be on the absolute minimum when it came to food but now the mission is to maintain a shape I am happy with and to make sure I stay healthy…so I no longer feel like I'm in the 'trainer dog house' if I treat myself.

I also love training…and I love training hard. Once you have the bug, it's pretty hard to get rid of so I make sure I get the right stuff to keep my energy levels consistent. In other words, I can consistently annoy everyone with my 'larger than life' attitude ALL. DAY. LONG ;).

Getting Sam Strong(er)

Yes, I'm going to take that title as being strong and that's down to this thing they call weight training. That thing that so many fitness 'experts' are telling women not to do. Well, I'll tell you all now, it's bloody fantastic! Weight training means you lift heavy stuff, sometimes things that are even heavier than you and you feel proud about it, you tell everyone about it and then because of this sense of achievement it gives you something…it gives you confidence.

The funny thing is, you see all of UP's transformation's that are 12 weeks, 6 weeks or a year or whatever but the majority of the time, those client's never really 'leave'. They will set new goals, they've connected with their trainer and trust them with their health and that's pretty much how I feel. I know it's a little different for me but I will never want to leave and can understand why our clients don't either…it's addictive as they say.

I love my training now, I've been taught how to lift, I've been taught how to 'feel' my muscles so that when I train harder and lift heavier, I can do it the right way without worrying about breaking stuff. After all, it's no good getting in good shape if you're falling apart…gymnastics has already done it's damage over the years so I have to look after myself too.

Right now, I feel strong, healthy and full of energy and it won't stop there.

Less Gym, More Social

I may talk about fitness a lot, I may post a lot of pictures of me in the gym and I may love working out but it's not my 'life' which many people can assume. The problem with assuming this is that you think to be able to achieve the body you're after or even just to stay in good health that you need to spend every waking moment in the gym and the only thing you can eat is chicken and veg. If you're thinking that, stop right now.

UP has taught me how to train smart and they've somehow managed to fill me with enough knowledge so I can make my own healthy decisions when it comes to food – they've done a good job that's for sure.

sams fitness journey - UP

I work at UP (so if I'm not there I won't get paid) and I still have a job to do. I still have the same 24 hours as you and have a demanding boss too (Nick Mitchell) so I still have the work/life/gym balance to juggle. Except I make it easy, I train 4-5 times a week, just for one hour and a lot of the time keep my weekends free – I choose a time, stick to it and jobs a good'en. And the reason I do it and never question whether I should go to the gym is because it makes me feel awesome!

I hardly ever get stressed, I don't worry about my body and I've never felt healthier and THAT is why I do it. I do it because it improves the quality of the life that I live…outside of the gym.

Until next time.

Sam

Social Media Manager at Ultimate Performance