Thursday, 31 March 2011

Full Throttle Fitness 2011 WOW # 9

This is one of my favourite strength endurance workouts. I did it a while ago and decided to share the experience on Saturday.

Due to my reoccurring elbow injury I couldn't train myself (believe me I was gutted) but I thoroughly enjoyed watching the guys pushing through the training ;).

Main session:

The exercises were:

Double KB Jerk

Front Squat (KB's rack position)

Renegade Row to push up

Burpee to push up






1st set looks like:

20 Jerks, 15 front squats, 10 renegade rows to push up, 5 burpees
2nd set
15 Jerks, 20 front squats, 5 renegade rows to push up, 10 burpees, etc...
After sets 1, 2, 3 and 4 have been completed - 4 mins rest

Bonus - all the way back
repeat set 4, set3, set2 and set 1

After the Bonus everyone had enough.


Thursday, 24 March 2011

New Warrior Training Body Weight Exercises

By Coach Cj Swaby

When Sincere said he would send me over his new bodyweight training DVD to review, I was humbled and amped. I have been following his stuff on line for a while and we've communicated virtually. A coach with integrity, that walks the path, he stands out from all the other BS that permeates the fitness industry at the moment.

But enough talk, check out some of the moves on the DVD.

I'll break down the review into several sections.

Coach Presentation

Sincere's style is relaxed, engaging and informative. He is able to break down the main coaching points effectively, while still maintaining a sense of humour.

Score: 5/5

DVD Content

There is some great content here. Aimed primarily at beginner to intermediate level, there are exercises that focus on total body integration. Challenging strength, coordination, power and conditioning. As a Coach myself there was even something in there for me (I'll be stealing that Sabretooth Crawl - thanks mate!).

Score: 5/5

DVD Presentation

My main criticism with the DVD is in the post production element. Its mainly filmed from a single static camera, which I feel did not do justice to the dynamic content of the DVD.Despite Sincere's engaging coaching I often found myself drifting. If there was one thing to change about the DVD, that would be it.

Score: 3/5

Total Score: 13/ 15

To Summarise

A DVD worth getting if you are into bodyweight training. Some good progressions, and great for entry level, and even intermediates. Put it in your collection along side Steve Maxwell's Joint Mobility DVD and Steve Cotter's Bodyweight exercises.

Full Throttle Fitness 2011 WOW #8

Full Throttle Fitness 2011 WOW #8

By Coach Cj Swaby

Since training for the Strength & Power meet I had noticed massive gains in my training, but had also noticed a decline in my endurance capacity. This week I decided to jump in and take part in the session, and raise the bar for all involved. My first request was that EVERYONE uses a step up from their regular Kettlebell. Then I told them what we were going to do. Have a look first at the clip below, then I'll tell you what we got up to.

Full Throttle Fitness 2011 WOW #8

Warm up: Joint Mobility / Dynamic Movement

Exercise Protocol: Ladder 10 - 1

Exercise Menu

1) Double Kettlebell Jerks
2) "Mahler" Kettlebell Swings
3) Handstand Walk Outs
4) Burpees

Cool Down & Stretch out

Now, this may not seem like much, but believe you me, its very, very nasty. Not Convinced? Join us!

Full Throttle Fitness

Saturday 12:15pm - 1:15pm
Balance Physiotherapy, 113 Gauden Road, London, SW4 6LE

Sunday, 13 March 2011

Body Matters: Are You Killing Yourself Slowly?

By Coach Cj Swaby

It was all over the newspapers. The forums and social network sites were buzzing with the story. Claudia Aderotimi, aged 20 had died in a hotel in Philidelphia after being injected with silicone, which entered into her blood stream and killed her.

It became apparent her death was the result of "bootleg" cosmetic surgery procedure for "Bottom Augmentation", gone horibbly, horribly wrong. As the story unfolded in the media, the picture painted was one of an aspiring, attractive singer, aspiring to break into the industry with her group, Chocolatez. Claudia wanted to be a superstar. Claudia, was to make the headlines of newspapers worldwide, sadly not for the reason she had hoped for.

It's November 2009. The Daily Mail features an article on Hannah Camille. Hannah first attempted to kill herself at the age of 15 by over dosing on pain killers. At the age of 9, Hannah began puberty early, and that's when her nightmare began, triggered by self loathing and paranoia. By the tender age of 12 she had developed anorexia and was on prozac, with professional help from a psychologist in her formative teenage years. From the age of 15 onwards a series of suicide attempts was to feature heavily in her life.

"When I look in the mirror all I see is where it's fat,' she said. 'I can see parts of me that look thin but I push that aside. I see my stomach sticking out, my hips are wide and my legs are huge.

When it first started I can remember thinking that people thought I was disgusting to be around. I remember feeling everybody hated me. I used to focus on everyone's put downs, and dismiss any compliments. The worst point was just before I started college. I tried to commit suicide for the first time. That was when I felt I didn't care if I'm not alive. I was not afraid to die."

Its now 2006 and Hannah has hit rock bottom. She's 23, her final suicide attempt led to Doctors wanting to admit her into psychiatric care, her mother Heather, aged 69 intervened. Hannah was allowed to stay home under 24 hour suicide watch. A treatment plan of medication and, the assistance of a therapaist who utlised photography to aid in Hannah's self healing was key. Hannah later went on to exhibit her work in the Chameleon Art Gallery in Walsall. Hannah said,

"I looked at them and I just saw myself as an art piece rather than me.
'It really helped to accept myself and not think about body and image but a person as a whole. It was then I contacted other sufferers and offered to take pictures of them. I believe that it helped them in a way as much as it did me - it was a kind of group therapy."

Hannah's story is online here

So WHAT was going on?

Two different women, two different extremes. For whatever reason be it social pressures, media or even biological factors, body image can be a battle ground for some. At war with a sense of who we are, and what we want to be (or others want us to be) can lead to self destructive tendencies. Body Dysmorphic Disorder is clinically defined as;

"BDD is a mental health problem related to body image, in which an individual has a preoccupation with one or more perceived or slight defects in his or her appearance. BDD is diagnosed only if the preoccupation causes significant distress, disrupts daily functioning or both.....People with BDD may feel compelled to frequently repeat time-consuming behaviours such as:

checking their appearance in a mirror or reflective surface
seeking reassurance about their appearance
checking by feeling their skin with their fingers
cutting or combing their hair to make it 'just so'
picking their skin to make it smooth
comparing themselves with models in magazines or people in the street. "

( March 2011)

HOW common is it?

The disturbing thing is that the charity, Mind, claim that beacuse so many people are ashamed to reveal their problem, and it is often misdiagnosed or missed by doctors, true figures are not readily available.

While clinical cases of BDD may be difficult to assertain, negative body image can have a huge impact on our lives. But is BDD exclusive to females? it would appear not. Muscle Dysmorphia is a growing phenomenon amongst men.

"A recently recognised form of body dysmorphic disorder that occurs almost exclusively in men is muscle dysmorphia, a preoccupation that one's body is too small, “puny,” and inadequately muscular.1 In reality, many of these men are unusually muscular and large. Compulsive working out at the gym is common, as is painstaking attention to diet and dietary supplements. Of particular concern, muscle dysmorphia may lead to potentially dangerous abuse of anabolic steroids, and studies indicate that 6-7% of high school boys have used these drugs.1

(British Medical Journal: 12 March 2011:

Men, Body Matters

I know first hand about how body image can drastically affect your life. Growing up in a household of domestic violence I was not a confident child (although it may appear outwardly that I was), I had "train track" braces for many years as my teeth were messed up. The usual on slaught of name calling came from my peers, and little attention from girls. Physically I was bigger than your average child, but loved my food. In my mid teenage years I started weight training and actively competed in boxing. My body changed. But the demons still persisted.

So the year is 2000. I stared dating a dancer and model, Rachel , who was to have a massive impact on me, and I am forever grateful to her. She suggested that I hand some pictures into an agency to get some work, as she believed I "looked the part" and had potential. Not convinced, I took some pictures, made a list of some agencies and off I went.

The first agency I went to I got rejected. Then the second . Then the third. On it went. What was interesting to me was not so much that I was getting rejected but my strong emotional response I was having. Feelings of self loathing, hatred, and frustration. My demons were coming to the surface, I didn' like the way this felt or the lack of control I perceived.

Curious, I decided to continue with this and just observe my mental chatter as I went to each audition. Not trying to change it, but just observe and see what came up. After a while, all this rejection got a bit boring so I called Rachel up. Told her what had happened, and all the rejections. She asked me WHICH agencies I had tried. So I told her.

Rachel then did something so simplistic and obvious, but the penny dropped. What was going on in my head did not directly correlate to what was going on in the outside world. My perception, which informed my actions, was the problem. I had been going to the wrong agencies. I was not suitable for them. Not that I was UGLY per se. She pointed out that I was bigger, more muscular and HEAVILY tattoed then most models that you see in the agencies I went to. That's not the type of work they do. She told me some agencies to try and I did. Sure enough she was right. I subsequently got several jobs, and did a short stint in the industry modelling, acting and music video extra. I used it as an opportunity to tackle my demons head on. They still came up, but I would dismantle the false belief, or simply force myself to act more boldy.

The year is 2011. I don't worry so much about how I look, even when I train I focus on performance goals (which will get you the body you desire as a side product) rather than simply on the way I look, weight etc. I believe this helps to create a more healthy mind set as you progress every session, getting better every time. I encourage this with all the clients and people I train. However, I've noticed a surge with men preoccupied with their masculinity and directly correlating it to they way they look physically. Since focusing on training outcomes, I am actually in better shape than I was before. Check out the pics below.

Coach Cj Swaby 2003

Coach Cj Swaby 2011

WHAT To Do: Identify The Problem, Fix The Problem


Identify The Problem: Create Self Awareness

Pay attention to your self talk
Notice grooming behaviours
Notice your relationship to your body, face, feet the whole thing!

(you can also refer to the BDD check list earlier in the post for guidance).

Fix The Problem

Surround Yourself with supportive positive people (eliminate those who are not)
Self Help books / Mantras
Self / Professional Hypnosis
Solution Focused Therapy
Take quiet time daily to reconnect with yourself and remind yourself how amazing you are.

I have personally used some of the above to help me. It might work for you too. While not directly related to BDD, a book I highly recommend is Feal The Fear and Do It Anyway (some great insights and practical strategies).

If you suspect you may need further proefsessional help in the UK you can contact the Charity MIND at or T:0845 766 0163

Friday, 11 March 2011

Full Throttle Workout of the week WOW# 7

By Sabina Skala

Last Saturday was my turn to lead the session. The plan was to do a simple circuit, focus on speed, light weights or body weight only and get as many reps during each min as possible.

Every time I think I cannot be surprised by training - it happens. War machine rows and push up rolls station was an absolute killer for all of us. Hats off to al the guys completing the training, it wasnt an easy session. All of us had to dig deep.

Joint mobility warm up

Repeat each station 2x before moving to the next one. 1 min work, 15 sec to change

War machine body row
3x push up + roll (continuously for 1 min)

Repeat 2 x move to
Station 2

staircase sprints
hand stand

Station 3
Ball slam
Double KB swings

Station 4
2xKB rack hold

Station 5
heavy bag flip
jumps over a bench

Cool down -
qi gong pose - bug supine position static hold - hold for 3 mins

Job done =)

Monday, 7 March 2011

Mike Mahler Workshop Edinburgh 2011

By Coach Cj Swaby

I had heard a lot about Mike Mahler. If you are into Kettlebells, his name would have not escaped you. Part of the original wave of RKC Instructors to bring the Kettlebell front and centre into the fitness industry, Mike Mahler, a free thinking individual, subsequently struck out and not so much carved (more like hacked) a niche, where he sits triumphantly atop of his domain, "Living Life Aggessively" . Don't be fooled by the internet hype, this man not only this knows his stuff, but Mike is a remarkably approachable and down to earth strength coach.

The weekend was hosted by the infectious Rannoch Donald of Simple Strength, and featured some of the finest Kettlebell Coaches in the UK to date. Christian Villa of Brighton Kettlebells, Matt & Keris of Fitter London, Ray Wilson of Aberdeen Kettlebells, David McConnachie of DMC, the list goes on.

Mike does not teach Kettlebells for GS, he's not that kind of animal. If your goal is the development of raw and explosive power, while utilising the Kettlebell optimally for maximum carry over; then you want to get on Mike's workshops. I won't go in to much detail what he covered (you'll have to attend a workshop for that). His lecture on hormone optimisation and nutrition was informative and useful practically - which is key.

I personally had a great time, playing with Kettlebells and getting to spend time with high quality people in a learning environment is something that I relish and am proud to be a part of. BIG thanks to Matt Whitmore of Fitter London who made sure I had to come with my "A - Game" when we stepped up to the Kettlebells, cheers mate!!

Mike Mahler Wokrshop Edinburgh 2011

Saturday, 5 March 2011

Full Throttle Fitness 2011 WOW# 6

Full Throttle Fitness WOW# 6

By Coach Cj Swaby

February 16th session was a special sesison. It was FREE (yep, free) courtesy of our friends over at Neuro. Our special guest Christian Villa, and Mark Stroud from Brighton Kettlebells were representing to full effect.

Coach Cj Swaby headed this session up, and questions were flying about as to what exactly he was on? and if he had stayed up all night devising this piece.

He simply turned around, bit his thumb at them and told them to "crack on!".

Full Throttle Fitness 2011 WOW#6

Warm up: Joint Mobiliy & Dynamic Movement

Main Session
Split inot two groups, Group A and Group B

Group A
Kettlebell Exercises x 2 minutes per exercise

1) Hand to hand kettlebell swing
2) Single Arm Kettlebell Cleans (1 min per arm)
3) Single Arm Kettlebell Jerks ( 1 min per arm)
4) Single Arm Kettlebell Snatch ( 1 minmute per arm)

Total Time: 8 minutes

Group B (Partner work)

4 stations

2 exercises per station

1 min per exercise then partners swap the exercise

Exercise Menu
1) Rower / Medicine Ball slams (4kg)
2) Marine Kit bag slam / Burpees with press up
3) Double Kettlebell Front Squat / Kettlebell Farmers walk
4) Weighted Vest stair sprints / Stair bear crawls

Total time: 8 minutes




Cool down and stretch out!

If you are looking for a fun effective workout pop down to

Balance physiotherapy, 113 Gauden Road, London,SW4 6LE
Sat: 12:15 - 1:15pm

10.00 GBP Newsletter and CJS Group Members 15.00 GBP all others