STPT logo 2014 The Health Hub - Bury St Edmunds logo

Our training philosophy is based upon the foundations of Strength, Mobility and Nutrition . From our first class gym facility at The Health Hub near Bury St Edmunds, we can show you how to integrate this into your training and your life.

Facebook circle black large Google + circle black large 69366

By Stuart Turner, Dec 22 2017 01:00PM

How to train at Christmas time
How to train at Christmas time

During the festive period there is often a lot of competition for your time and energy, and more often than not getting to the gym or doing some exercise is substitiuted for other more desirable activities involving mulled wine and minced pies.

However all is not lost, here are a few tips to keep a healthy balance during this period.

1. Get the family involved – Christmas is a great time to spend with family and friends so why not meet up at the park and throw a ball around or go for a workout or swim. Catching up for a coffee after a few lengths in the pool kills two birds with one stone.

2. Dump the kids with family – when family are about make the most of it and sneak a bit of me time. I’m sure grandparents, aunts and uncles will love to have the little ones for an hour. In my experience its best not to overuse this one.

3. Get outside – use your holiday time to get out and run/jog or walk. Just be sure to warm up properly and build up slowly. No-one wants to spend Christmas day injured because you decided on a half marathon after months of inactivity.

4. Clear the head – a lot of gyms are open early in the morning and there is no better way to clear the Christmas party hangover than an hour in the gym. It takes some motivation but once it’s done you’ll feel much better.

5. Schedule cleverly – This ones the boring one, book yourself some time to train. Work it into your day and put it on the calendar. It’s amazing how easy it is to find an hour if you plan in advance, and similarly how easy it is to get to the end of a week off and find you haven’t found time to exercise.

6. Sack it all off and start again in January – If all else fails and you really can’t train over the festive period then don’t panic. It is only a week or so and you won’t get that out of shape…….surely. However make a plan, set a date or make an appointment with a personal trainer for your return. Don’t let a week off turn into 2 or 3.

Most of all enjoy yourself – life’s short and Christmas doesn’t happen everyday.

Check out these 3 blog posts on short fun workout ideas

Too Busy For Fitness! Really?

5 Fun finishers for your next workout

Four Minute Fitness.....

By Stuart Turner, Jul 6 2017 08:27AM

Fitness for golf is an area that has gained a lot of exposure over the last 10 or so years. More and more amateur golfers are taking note of what goes on in the professional game and how the pro players are now taking this aspect of their game a lot more seriously.

Now I’m no golf pro, I like to think I can get round without too much embarrassment, but I won’t be going on tour anytime soon, and I don’t feel I’m the right person to give you tips on your swing. However I can look at the physical characteristics that we can change in order to allow you to improve that aspect of your game.

From an exercise and fitness point of view we can influence 5 main areas.

1) Staying injury free

This is fundamentally the most important aspect of being fit for golf. If you’re injured you can’t play so your exercise programme should be geared towards helping you move well and staying as free of niggles and aches as possible. Focusing on how you control your muscles and the order in which they fire is the foundation of a good programme.

2) Stability (of the lower Body)

Building the foundation for a strong swing comes from the strength in your legs and lower body notably the glutes and posterior chain. Having the ability to stay still and strong at the base of your swing will allow you better rotation and increased range of motion.

3) Mobility (of the Upper body)

Heavily linked to the point above, a good flexible torso allows the upper body to rotate freely, without this mobility particularly at the thoracic spine the body will lack the range necessary for a full swing. There is also the potential for the body to compensate for the lack of range with things like arm movement and over emphasis on the lower back.

4) Core strength

Linked to all other points core strength will help with mobility, stability and staying injury free. To clarify, by core strength I’m talking about the area from your knees up to your shoulders. With all other variables equal the stronger you are the further you can hit the ball.

5) Speed and Power

Rory Mcilroy is famed for his long hitting. Now he isn’t a particularly big guy, no disrespect to him but he’s not deadlifting cars and winning the world’s strongest man. So the distance is coming, not from strength but from the speed he gets the club head through the ball. This comes from the speed that he can rotate his upper body.

The great thing about all of these areas is that they are very trainable. Getting the right programme in the gym can and will really aid your golf game.

By Stuart Turner, May 3 2017 08:35PM

I use the word fun very loosely here. I understand it takes a certain individual to enjoy this sort of thing and most people need a bit of a nudge to get going. Here are a few alternatives to cardio work that can help your metabolism and help you burn more calories throughout your day.

1. Beat the deck – This is one of my favourites and works really well either as a standalone workout when time is short or for those looking to really take things up a notch at the end of their session. All you need is a deck of cards or find a random card app on your phone. Assign a different exercise per suit, set a timer and try and beat the deck.

Here’s a recent example I used with a client.

Clubs = Press Ups,

Spades = Inverted Rows,

Hearts = Squats,

Diamonds = Kettle bell swings.

All picture cards count as 10.

This took about 17 minutes to complete, and was a tough workout. You can play around with the exercise but keep a balance - think a push, a pull, a squat variation and a hip movement exercise and you will be ok.

Oh and if you have jokers in the pack they can be 10 burpees.

2. Sled pushing – Sled pushes are great as they burn a lot of calories and are pretty easy on the joints. We have a couple of options in the gym that get the same result. Our tyre is a 60kg brute and takes some pushing or we have a sled option where weight can be varied but the pushing point is much lower. I like to either work on the minute every minute or set a timer and see how many lengths can be completed in a given time. As a finisher, I try and work for a total of about 10 – 15 minutes with periods of high intensity (working) and periods of low intensity (lying on the floor crying).

3. Get the gloves on -We have a couple of trainers in the gym with some boxing experience and I’ve had a few workouts on the bag/pads with them. This has often been the hardest period of my session but definitely the most enjoyable. Try and get some pointers from someone who knows what they are doing or a couple of sessions with a coach to really get the most out of your time. The last thing you want to do is get injured. I’ve found mixing some pad work with some bodyweight fitness exercises is a really great way to spend a session.

4. Medicine ball circuits – I use these with some of my new clients when I’m trying to coach good form as well as get some intensity into their workouts. I use whole body movements with the added weight of a light medicine ball (maybe 2-3kg for most newby clients) and just tag them together. For example, a medicine ball squat and press combined with a side lunge and reach and a reverse lunge and rotation. That’s 3 exercises in all 3 planes of movement. 10 reps per exercise/leg takes about 60 – 90 seconds to complete. Rest for 45-60 seconds and do 5 rounds.

5. Sprints – Track or treadmill it doesn’t matter. An underrated way of training and a great way to get real intensity. If you’re a beginner then try and build gradually and get good form. Don’t try and run before you can walk as they say. A few quicker bouts of 30 seconds in the middle of your run is a good starting point. Use your rest period well, sometimes it’s tempting to keep the pace up here but doing so reduces the intensity of subsequent sprints. As you progress you should be aiming for a 1:2 work to rest ratio. One minute on and 2 minutes off or 20 seconds to forty seconds work well. A set of 10 rounds can make a brilliant HIIT session.

By Stuart Turner, Mar 10 2014 09:12PM

A "24hour Row!" Those four words uttered as a throw away comment as we brainstormed some fundraising ideas last November. I never thought I would actually be sitting on a rowing machine/"erg" in a small wooden pre-school building at 3 am in the morning feeling like I was going to throw up.

We were 12 hours in and so far we had completed 165km, well on our way to our original target of 300km but still it felt like we were a long way short. I had just completed my 9th or maybe 10th 15 minute stint and my competitive side had got the better of me, trying to beat guys who had either just arrived or were about 8 inches taller than me was, in hindsight, a bit daft.

We were trying to raise money to begin to improve the facilities at my eldest son's pre-school. The school is great and the teachers are fantastic but in order to take things to the next level and improve the care for the children, the building needs extending and updating.

A lot of people had got involved, with teachers, parents, grandparents and friends all taking part and plenty of people willing to sponsor the madness of it all and to see me suffer.

I had done a little bit of training in the weeks leading up to the event, I found this little exert from my training diary on the first day I started to train....

"Thought I better jump on a rowing machine, uh oh, long way to go. Although aerobically I'm reasonably fit, nothing quite prepares you for the rowing machine. Hips ache, butt aches and quads are burning....and that's after 4 minutes......."

Things did improve however and I think I came in to the event in reasonable shape.

We started at 3pm on Friday and planned to do 15 minute stints rotating on and off the machine. I was planning to stay up for the full 24 hours and was timetabled to do about 12-15 stints. Others were coming and going throughout, donating their time as and when they could. At any one time we would have roughly 4 or 5 people rotating.

We had managed to get hold of some energy drinks and recovery shakes donated by our friends up at Northampton Saints (thanks Chris) and this kept us going. Before long it was 9pm and I was feeling quite good, although the bulk of my work was still to come. Gav Fisher and Chris Hart really pushed the pace here and we were progressing nicely.

Disaster struck in the hours before midnight. A couple of our key rowers had just departed and were heading for a well-earned rest, but it was ok fresh legs had arrived. Eddie had assured me he was the man for the job in the early hours, a night owl anyway and an endurance machine (he had once cycled from Bury to Newmarket!). Pumped up and eager to impress Eddie set off at a frantic pace, unfortunately after 2 minutes of Olympic standard effort, events conspired against him and his finely tuned body started to break down. A combination of historical injury, 'an individual' rowing technique and a gross miscalculation of the gravity of the challenge meant we lost one of our key men. However Kim and Devonia were happy to pick up some of the slack and extra efforts from Gav and myself also filled the void before our next set of fresh legs arrived.

By 1am we were flying, 3 of us were rowing in a 15 minutes on 30 minutes off relay and the pace was high, John and Matt were really going for it. I was on the erg just starting a stint and in walked Malcolm, Kim's Dad. He'd been one of our early rowers but a valentines dinner reservation had taken him away from us. "I've had steak, I've had beer, I've had wine and chocolate pudding, how about you?" not the best motivation but a welcome distraction none the less. For the next hour or so we pushed on, Malc even had a 5 minute blast in his dinner suit, before the effect of the 2 bottles of Italian wine caused an ungainly and painful looking dismount.

The next few hours went by in a blur, by 5am it was getting hard, I'd been awake nearly 24 hours and it was starting to show. I tried to keep the pace the same but I couldn't keep it going for as long, 15 minute stints turned to 10 minute stints and sometimes to 5 minute stints. This was the hard bit, no fresh legs for another 2 hours just us pushing through, the promise of bacon sandwiches arriving at 8am, the only thing keeping us going.

At last, breakfast, I was starving but too tired to eat properly, people were popping in now after a good nights sleep, apparently I didn't look to bad. Really?? I felt terrible. I had a text conversation with Chris who had rowed the evening section, words of encouragement gave me back my focus and we cracked on. Keeping the stints shorter and more often seemed to be better for me and the pace stayed high. Our pit stop style changes were really working.

At about 12:50 we hit 300km, this was massive for us, this was our target. We pushed on after that milestone, new legs had arrived and we decided to see what we could do. The total distance covered was 333km and by the end we were doing 90 seconds on then changing over. At 3pm we were done. Relieved, exhausted and proud.

To fully appreciate and understand how much effort some people had put in here are a few facts and figures. Gav Fisher did 35km at a consistently good pace, John Hall 38km and was moving the machine he was pushing that hard, Kim was awake through the night for 22 hours and pushed herself to exhaustion, Mel and Michelle came back 4 if not 5 times to do more rowing, Chris drove 2 hours to do nearly 20km of rowing and then drove 2 hours back in the middle of the night. Others had pushed themselves hard too, I can't name them all but thank you.

The next time we have a fundraising brainstorm, I might just keep my mouth shut!