Sports editor’s 12 week fitness tests looming

Worksop Guardian Sports Editor Graham Smyth is put through the paces at the Apple Fitness and Wellbeing Centre  (w120524-6c)
Worksop Guardian Sports Editor Graham Smyth is put through the paces at the Apple Fitness and Wellbeing Centre (w120524-6c)

TWELVE weeks after starting to get fit with the experts at Apple Fitness, sports editor Graham Smyth is on the verge of a set of tests to determine his progress.

Here is his latest blog on the fitness drive.

You can follow his gym routine on Twitter @grahamsmyth or @Applegymworksop or use the hashtag #getgrahamfit

THERE’S a certain nervous tension in my body, accompanying the aches and pains from today’s crossfit gym session, ahead of tomorrow’s ‘body composition’ tests.

It’s 12 weeks since I walked into Apple and gave them permission to transform my health and fitness.

Time flies when you’re having fun, and when you’re being beasted in the gym apparently.

At the six week point we discovered that my body fat percentage had dropped from around 22 per cent to around 16 – a dramatic chance in a short time.

I don’t expect tomorrow’s results to be quite as impressive or pleasing, because the first six weeks took me from a lifestyle that included no exercise to three tough personal training sessions per week.

It was bound to improve my body shape.

This set of results will perhaps be more interesting, to see if I’ve continued to progress and if the exercise has improved things like lung function, flexibility – and crucially for my summer wardrobe, my waistline.

I’m hopeful for another positive set of results.

I’m also knackered.

It’s only a short time since I returned to the sports desk, following a session with Tom Wilde.

He put me through a crossfit type circuit, comprising of nine exercises, completed three times each in three sets.

So 15 press ups, three times. Fifteen squats, three times. Fifteen bench dips, three times. And so on.

There were dumbell flys, reverse bench press, box jumps, weighted squats, lunges, bunny hops over a bench.

By the end of it I was sweating like a hog, panting like a dog on a sunny day and my legs burned like the hottest sauce on offer at a popular chicken-themed eaterie.

A few minutes on the bike and some PNF stretching finished off the session and brought my heartrate and body temperature down slightly.

This week has been a busy one at the gym, but a good one.

On Monday, again with Tom, I did three five minute stints on the bike, treadmill and rower – attempting to travel 1km in a certain time, as fast as I could go.

Then we did several different abs exercises.

By unhappy coincidence Tuesday brought another abs session, this time with Joe Palmer.

Every laugh, cough or sneeze on Wednesday was torturous.

I’m into a nice routine at the gym now though, and as motivated as ever.

As soon as my lunchbreak starts I head to the gym, change quickly and warm up for five or so minutes before a 30 to 40 minute hard session, a shower and back to the desk.

So I’ve exclusively used my lunchbreaks to get fitter.

The average gym goer wouldn’t perhaps do three personal training exercises per week, given the costing, scheduling etc, but this fitness drive is going some way towards proving that improved fitness can be achieved in a relatively short amount of time, with an hour to spare a few times a week.

My diet has definitely helped, and in my next couple of blogs I’ll post some of my food diary and the advice I got from another expert at Apple on what to eat and when, to keep me fuelled and refuelled before and after work outs.

Tune in next week to find out exactly how fat I am.