Happy Thursday to you,
As January comes to a close I’ve managed to complete 4 workouts per week and a total of 576 pistol squats (288 on each leg).
Pistol squats are the ultimate leg exercise but they are not easy.
Just as with all exercises, there is a natural progression, just like learning to walk before you can run 🙂
So in order to help you progress safely through all the most effective squat exercises, I’ve created a 30-day kettlebell squat challenge for you.
See more on this challenge below.
This month I’ve also started a new daily habit of performing a short 3-minute mobility routine every morning while I wait for my green tea to brew.
3 minutes per day of really focusing in on areas of your body that are tight and restricted can make a real difference. I’m currently working on my shoulders and upper back.
This month I’ve also taken a deep dive into supplements and whether they are really worth your investment. More on this below too.
30 Day Kettlebell Squat Challenge
Want to improve your squats and spend the next 30 days giving something back to your body?
Great, then join me on the 30 day squat challenge starting 1st Feb.
This month I have introduced you to the importance of using the 5 essential movement patterns in your workouts.
One of those crucial movements is the squat (knee bend).
When working with clients the first thing I do is assess the squat pattern and then get to work strengthening and improving it.
Once you can squat well, almost everything else slots into place.
- Stronger legs, hips, buttocks, back and core muscles
- Improved stabilisers so movement is safer
- Better mobility in the hips, knees, and back
- Correct alignment for loading and moving
Often painful knees are due to weakness rather than joint issues. Slowly strengthening the squat pattern helps to stabilise the knee and remove joint pain.
One other thing that is often overlooked, even by trainers, is the benefit that squatting has on opening and pumping the joints with nutrients.
If you suffer from a tight or niggling lower back then simply squatting to the bottom position will open up the lower back and help mobilise those stiffened vertebrae.
Squatting is free medicine for all those inactive joints that usually get neglected.
So how about it? Ready to start the squat challenge?
Learn more: 30 day kettlebell squat challenge
Here’s a more advanced workout from my 50 kettlebell circuits
- Windmill – 30 secs each side
- Side Lunge – 30 secs each side
- Clean – 30 secs each side
- Racked Squat and Press (thruster) – 30 secs each side
This workout will take you 4 minutes but can be repeated for a total of 2 or 3 circuits. Try to flow from one exercise to the next without putting the kettlebell down in between exercises.
You will be surprised at just how cardiovascular a small workout like this can be.
Do you take any supplements? Are you sure they are doing you any good?
The supplement industry is very profitable and worth approximately $50 billion.
Unlike pharmaceuticals, supplements do not need to go through rigorous clinical trials. Supplements are classed as food and as such only need to be safe enough for consumption and don’t need to be proven scientifically.
Good quality food contains vitamins and minerals in different proportions but perfectly balanced for human consumption. Supplements contain isolated vitamins and minerals in an unnatural form.
Only vitamin B and C are water-soluble the rest A, D, E and K are stored in the body, mostly by the liver. Once you consume enough B and C vitamins the rest is peed out.
Scientifically very little has been proven to make any difference to your overall health. Most supplements don’t produce any benefits above and beyond a placebo effect (you think they work so they do).
I personally don’t take supplements but if I did here are the only ones that have at least some scientific evidence:
- B Vitamins: for non-meat eaters, especially vegans getting enough vitamin B can be difficult especially B12. You could eat yeast flakes instead.
- Vitamin C: useful if you have a cold but has been shown not to prevent them.
- Vitamin D: if you don’t get much sun in the winter then they can help but food and sunlight are much more effective. Get outside!
- Fish oils: don’t like oily fish then these can help but they do not provide all three omega-3 fatty acids so fish is more effective.
- Folic acid: only if you are pregnant.
Even the evidence for a catch-all multivitamin suggests little or no benefit.
If you do take supplements then you may want to rethink or investigate further and instead spend your money on organic vegetables instead.
Here are a few training tools I use:
- Parallettes – these mini parallel bars are excellent for push-ups, jump throughs and working on your L-sit. I combine mine with stability ball push-ups and core exercises.
- Interval Timer – many of my workouts use timed intervals rather than reps that way you can work harder during each interval as your fitness improves. Interval timers help keep you motivated and on track and beep at you so it keeps your workouts honest. Brand: Gymboss
- Kettlebells – you only need 1 kettlebell to get started. Here’s my guide to buying kettlebells for both men and women.
That’s all for today.
I hope you can join me on the February 30 day kettlebell squat challenge.
See you next week.
P.S. Missed last weeks newsletter? Read it here
[I’ve included some links above that are affiliate links, which means that if you choose to make a purchase, I will earn a commission. This commission will NOT affect the original price or the price you pay.]