Third Space’s Andy Vincent reveals the tips and tricks that can help you achieve your weightloss goals.

A personal training session is the simplest step to elevate your training programme to the next level and go from standard gym-goer to a recreational athlete with direction and drive to progress.

Here we want to provide a peek behind the curtain of the kind of advice you can expect from a personal training session at Third Space. For the beginner starting out on their own fitness journey, random workouts reward you with random results – it’s expert guidance that guarantees improvement.

Here, split between activation, training, nutrition and recovery, Third Space PT Andy Vincent reveals his simple yet effective tips to achieve one of the most popular workout goals – weightloss. Listen up to lean down.

 

Activation

Mobilise the big players
The feet, hips and shoulder blades are where most things happen, and the better prepared they are, the better primed your body is to work out effectively and burn through calories. Make sure you plan one or two exercises for each – internal and external rotations for your hips, say – and do these as both part of the warm up, but also deploy them as intra-set mobility. Save yourself some time by continuing to mobilise as you start your routine. Any recovery slots in a session can be filled with your mobility, which allows you to get your workload done in less time.

Warm up sets
If you’re time poor, make your warm up really specific by doing one or two non-working warm up and activation sets prior to loading the exercise to your first working weight. Remember, it’s not a working set until the load is 75% of your max lift.

 

Workout

Know your personal best
Be it in cardio or weight training, increasing your output by always looking to go one better will make the body adapt. By adapting you will utilise more calories in recovery and become more efficient as an athlete. We are currently living in a “High Intensity” craze, but don’t kid yourself that your intensity is high just because you’re knackered. Using objective markers of success like weights lifted, rather than subjective things like how you feel, will make sure you are improving all the time. Conversely, if you’re finding the workouts tough, but aren’t keeping up with your numbers, that’s an equally useful indication that you’re probably over training and not creating enough stimulus for your body to adapt and lean down.

Cut your rest periods
Specifically during weight training, increasing training density will give you the biggest bang for your buck with fat loss. Make sure you are using your correct weight selection for a given rep and set range (a weight that you can complete the reps with) but try to bring your rest periods down to get more workload done in a session and to increase your total training volume.

 

Nutrition

Know your total daily energy expenditure (TDEE)
You can get this from so many places these days. Any fitness tech will calculator your TDEE. When you are armed with this info you can start to workout how much you should be eating per day / week. This allows you to stop overthinking the small things like one bad meal or a glass of wine. It’s your actions over a week / month that are key and knowing your targets allows you to make dietary deviations confidently without letting the whole plan fall apart.

Losing fat requires an energy deficit
That means more calories are being burned than are being consumed. So eating slightly less and potentially being hungry is inevitable. It’s generally easier to delay eating than it is to start eating and have big gaps in between meals. Delaying the first meal can be a easy way to get around feeling hungry. Eating your meals between 11-7 or 12-8 is a one way to try to combat this. Play around with timings to see what works best, just remember to stay in a deficit.

 

Recovery

Adjust the intensity of your workouts
Training frequency will ideally be around 3-4 intensity driven sessions per week. But to help promote recovery, you can work in steady state cardio to your week to increase blood flow and better prepare yourself for your harder sessions. You can’t hammer your body every time you’re in the gym. Make sure you listen to your body and adjust your sessions if required. If you feel sore and your energy is low but you’re scheduled to do a HIIT session, you’re better off going for a walk and doing some soft tissue work and coming back the following day to do that harder session. That way you can actually handle working at a higher training output and maximise the fat-burning benefits.

Yes, again, sleep is important
Sleep is as important for fat loss as it is for any other training goal, be it gaining muscle mass or sports performance. We need to stop talking about it and start acting on it. The single biggest thing I see change my clients sleep patterns is going for an old school alarm clock and banning tech in bedrooms. Put charge points in the kitchen and take no tech to bed. This coupled with a generally good sleep hygiene routine can be crucial for dropping body fat; bath before bed, meditation, reading (something relaxing), taking magnesium etc. It’s the key to waking up leaner every morning.