Working out with a focus on natural, functional movement
With only a few weeks left of official summer, it can be hard to gather that much needed workout motivation. But don’t fret, I have a solution for you, girl – get up, get out, and get someone else to help push you – problem solved! To make it even easier for you, I’ve got a great recommendation for where to start: the great people behind Guardian Fitness are the perfect candidates to whip you in to shape!
I was lucky enough to experience a week of personal training at Guardian Fitness. And, to make sure I really understood what Guardian is about, my itinerary consisted of three sessions 1-on-1 with Guardian Fitness founder, Muay Thai coach and Crossfit expert, Parfait N’Donda!
As they say, safety first, and that is exactly how my first session started. Before getting my sweat on, I was asked to demonstrate basic exercises such as my squat, pushup and lunge to ensure my form was correct. This is one of the most beneficial aspects of personalised training in my books, as it is so easy to do damage lifting incorrectly. Better yet, Parfait made sure to justify each comment or critique so that I truly understood each error – believe me; this makes it so much easier to avoid making the same mistakes again.
Guardian Fitness focuses on training the whole body through functional movements, working on both strength and high-intensity cardio training. On my second session we started to work on my form and strength. Parfait is a no-nonsense sort of guy. In his mind, you don’t need stylish athleisure-wear or fancy machines with all the bells and whistles to get fit and healthy. Just passion, commitment, dedication… and a barbell or two, of course. This attitude is evident in his sessions – instead of using a variety of confusing machines and exercises, we focused on perfecting just 3 or 4 compound exercises to work the entire body.
On my last session we worked on the dreaded cardio, with circuits consisting of both weighted and bodyweight exercises. Before starting, the routines sound fairly manageable, but a combination of the reps, weight, and exercise lead to a deadly workout every time. I always left a little shaky… in a good way, I promise!
Upon entering Guardian Fitness I was a little intimidated. I arrived 10 minutes early and caught a glimpse of a petite, toned women lifting a lot of weight (was it too late to back out?!). However, Parfait was quick to explain that the individual I saw had come to him with no strength training experience whatsoever – not even a pushup. He implored me to not get intimidated because these are the types of people he wants to attract to Guardian – normal people with varying fitness levels and abilities. By the time I left – even after my short stint – I had a new-found confidence (not to mention killer deadlift!) that I could do this. And if I can do it, you can too!
Guardian Fitness, 3/F, 30 Hollywood Road, Central, Hong Kong, 6147 7346, www.guardianfitness.hk