Base 2 Space: First ever public stair Climb Event to the Top of the Space Needle in Seattle

“Base 2 Space 2015,” is an event where over a thousand people completed the full ascent during Seattle’s inaugural Space Needle stairway climb.

A fine structure to climb. Truly Seattle. We ascended through the spire into the halo.

Up very close to the Space Needle

Up very close to the Space Needle

Benefits of Climbing Stairs

Here is a short list

  • Excellent cardiovascular workout
  • Full body strength and endurance
  • Is a life changing experience
  • Fat loss
  • Helps you live longer

Elite climbers would be comparable to a runner who can achieve a near five minute mile

I arrived by 6:45 and was good to go. The earliest start time was around 7AM and then there was a gap of 30 seconds in between each participant. Here is a pic of the first wave:

These people were great

I was the odd one out

These guys realize benefits of cardio and vertical endurance. It seems like the successful climbers also train against the gravity of incline through sports such as uphill biking or mountain running. Tower climbing isn’t too far off — going up and ascending in multiple environments has many benefits.

Lessons learned from the incline environment

It felt amazing to give it my all. Looking forward to future climbs because each one you learn more about yourself. I noticed the experienced climbers have a mental edge with events like this and some people are truly talented.

View of the Puget Sound as the sun rises from the other direction

Hanging out at the top and looking over the Puget Sound at 7:30 AM early October

Here are the results:

Base-2-Space-2015-Overall-Results-Seattle-WA-Saturday-October3rd-text2

Out of 1,080 finishers, I ranked 10 and first in my age group! This sport seems to be something that allows longevity and doesn’t hurt the joints much. I want to get better every time.

 Wow, what an exciting event!

I do appreciate that events like this that show I’m a human being — raising money for quality charities that advance methods of health care for all.

Base 2 Space Needle selfie

Base 2 Space

Even more, I truly enjoyed the mental challenge. After the event was over, I fell asleep and had this wonderful dream. In this dream, I enjoyed just the positive parts of the climb with a very rewarding memory ascending the stairways and feeling bliss. I believe at that moment I was experiencing recovery in the physical and mental sense.

Looking forward to the Big Climb and other tower events, see you there!!

Thanks for reading and stay tuned…

Fat Loss Fitness

Benefits of Orangetheory Seattle area

What are the things that OTF team enjoys?

Fitness. Well fitness is related to food and you’ve got to put some of that on the plate some how! The key is that fitness is something that a lot of people have in common.

Rach Row

Rach Row

Most of us recognize the need for some physical intensity — the key is finding the right intensity. I’ve learned that the majority of people who go to OTF have jobs/careers that have varying levels of sedentary moments. Some people sit more than others. We need to get up and move.

Fitness is about progression

Just like we must strengthen our muscles in exercise, we also must become more seasoned in our line of expertise. We are growing a movement in Seattle with a fitness first mindset and we want as many people as possible to be part of it.

Reaching a plateau

Eventually you may reach a plateau, That is you may reach a point where you will not become any stronger or larger if that is your goal.  In which case you can still find ways for progression on skills and techniques. There is still opportunity for progression by learning and strengthening skills and other areas of fitness.

Benefits of OTF from the inside

Well here is the list.

1. The workouts

We love taking the workouts because the HIIT really seems to eliminate the fat!!!

Noticeably leaner in just a couple workouts if you’re willing to push it hard. High speeds and aggressive intervals is a matter of will and determination. Full body determination and activation of muscles throughout the spectrum, just focus on the technique with breathing an emphasis.

Full body strength and strong legs = good running potential. That’s why when you are able to go heavier in the weight room it has a direct carry over to your treadmill power capabilities.

Being able to take OTF workouts at studios all over is a fantastic benefit.

2. The People

Okay I probably should have listed this first.

Community, community, community. That’s another example of how fitness helps outside the workouts. We need community — well I’m speaking for some — even for those who enjoy occasional solitude. There are some figures and many wonderful people at OTF.

Each moment is an opportunity. To have a really good class you really have to stay in the moment. I dreamed I had the emotional and social abilities to make the thousands of people taking workouts be part of the community. Well many do appreciate and that I do as well.

The brand itself is growing so fast and all around the country, even world. Some people make decisions of where to move based on the location of an Orangetheory Fitness even!! So that connects people all over, which is pure opportunity whether for knowing someone or just having confidence-boosting interactions.

I’ve been a part of this whole Seattle journey for OTF.

3. Making history

I definitely feel that Orangetheory is changing the fitness industry. There is such a powerful combination of instant biofeedback and full body exercise prescription that people tend to get results quickly. It CAN be fun and energizing to the rest of your life.

People are witnessing these trends and the fitness industry will continue to evolve. Fitness is trending towards technology in the workouts along with full-body exercises to achieve certain goals. There’s something powerful about having peers though and I’m talking about people who are having the experience of the workout with you.

We area reaching a new understanding of how to run efficient fat burning programs that benefits people of many different shapes and sizes, strengths and limitations. There are amazingly popular coaches and also good coaches. The workouts are effective as long as you have a motivating factor, which may be intrinsic or extrinsic or even a combination. Either way, this stuff really works.

Hope you enjoyed this perspective from me

Thanks for reading and stay tuned

 

Fitness Orangetheory Fitness Seattle Orangetheory Seattle

Faster fitness through progressive strength exercises

What about my journey getting fit people ask…

I want people to experience the benefits of training with progressive resistance techniques. Strength training by performing a variety of low, moderate, and high rep sets will boost physical capacity in great ways. Some people have asked about how I workout.

Rio

It’s been a journey

My recent back workout:

Warmup on TRX. 

  • TRX high row x 10 at about 70% intensity with focus on the target muscle groups
  • TRX chest press x 10 similar

Pull up station

  • Towel pull ups (so HARD on forearms)
    • 4 sets of 6 reps with 60 seconds rest in between sets
  • Neutral grip pull up
    • 2 sets of 8
  • Wide pull up isometric hold
    • Held a couple reps for 10-15 seconds

Kettlebell (more thick grip)

  • Leaning single arm Kettlebell row
    • 2 sets of 8 with 50 lbs KB

Cable stations

  • Pull down station with separate handles
    • Reverse flies with fixed angle straight arms
      • 3 sets of 12
    • Then heavier lat pull down with squeeze
      • 2 sets of 8 long reps 
  • Cable station with individual handle
    • Straight arm pull down with a single side at a time
      • 2 sets long reps
    • Cable high row
      • More bent elbow
      • 2 sets of 15

Then I cleaned up and got ready to walk back up the hill.

Walking up the hill often

I walk up the hill often. A variety of paces and I’m not afraid to get sweaty. Walk up the hill.

Walk up the hill to burn fat. Just be careful because the restaurants emit pleasing aromas. Keep the eye on the prize, because fitness is priceless.

Fitness

3 Key Investments in your health and fitness

Burn fat and get lean by investing your time with habits that support these three things

Getting lean can take weeks, months, years, or even the struggle continues for some. The investments of time are of the most important value that you have. Think about your habits and how important that habit is for your life.

routinerward

Here are a few ways to invest that time into fitness, fat loss and overall well-being.

1. Move lightly often

In the workouts we do in Orangetheory Fitness Seattle, we take participants through five zone heart rate guided training. The second zone, light-zone which is colored blue is a light zone, one step above resting. You want to be in this light intensity zone throughout the actions of the rest of your life outside of of HIIT workouts, because you will burn more fat during EPOC.

People who look like they walk everywhere probably do.

People who look like they walk everywhere probably do.

Moving lightly would be things such as walking, doing chores, light games in the park, etc. Movement of some sort which is not strenuous and not taxing on mental performance as well. The more time you spend in the blue zone during the other hours in the day are near guaranteed health boosters.

Additionally, performing HIIT exercise 4x/week is killer for lasting calorie burn.

People in my classes know about that last part.

2. Go natural, careful of people who aren’t invested in your health

We have been exposed to many advertising campaigns about food and what’s healthful and what’s not. Media and popular culture are impossible to escape. Most ads are designed to create a false need.

Shocking for some, people haven't you seen Food Inc?

Shocking for some, people haven’t you seen Food Inc?

Let’s keep this simple. If the company spends TONS of money on advertising campaigns, there’s a significantly greater chance that it is BAD for you. Eating processed foods and sugary foods is like taking on debt in the body — you even have to pay interest since body fat negatively affects the endocrine system. Making it even harder to burn fat.

So once you pay off the debt of eating poorly, then you must invest in eating healthy. The health of your stomach and digestive system are important elements strongly related to fat loss.

3. It is all about Gut Health: Living cells for digestion/immunity

We are walking environments and ecosystems. There are ten times more bacteria cells that exist mostly symbiotically with our human cells. This is a good thing because we need these bacteria to protect us with other bacteria of our environment and the things we eat.

Cells, man. Food affects them greatly.

Human cells have similarities to the quality of food which you consume 

So how do you PROTECT the Gut?

  • Living / Fermented foods with known probiotic effects: yogurt, kefir, unpasteurized fermented vegetables such as sauerkraut and pickles, Korean fare like Kim-Chi, Miso, Kombucha, many raw foods, fresh juices & more
  • Clean energy / vitamin and mineral-dense foods: Leafy green vegetables, Lentils, seafood like wild salmon (especially for Omega-3 BENEFITS), Squash, Coconut foods/oils/extracts, high fiber, quality proteins, healthy fatty acids (less of the omega-6 variety) & more
  • Pre-Biotic foods that support our ideal healthy function of bacteria in the human body: Ginger, Garlic, Onions, Leeks-related, Dandelion greens, Asparagus (** HIGHLY POWERFUL FAT BURNER PEOPLE), cabbage (immunity), Fruits, also root vegetables, artichokes, & more

It’s not easy to know what is the best to eat for you so it’s best to be mindful.

Timing & Planning are what it takes

IF you aren’t planning for success in your actions, then the outcome of bad habits will resonate. You should plan for success with food and then you can enjoy moving often too.

justchill

 

Good luck stay tuned and thanks for reading!

Fitness Nutrition, Immunity, and Digestion Orangetheory Fitness Seattle Orangetheory Seattle

How to get Stronger at Orangetheory Fitness: 3 insider tips

Is your goal to get stronger at Orangetheory Fitness?

Even if it’s not, you might still learn something about strength training. My experiences coaching at OTF have given me great opportunities to promote strength training among general Seattle population. To gain strength, we must progressively adapt against stimulus.

A unique "Endurance" workout

A unique “Endurance” workout still an opportunity for strength

Over a year of coaching and taking classes at Orangetheory have allowed me to bring you these tips:

1. Go HEAVY

People think that because the 25’s are the heaviest on the individual rack that they are heavy. In a few cases, the 25’s could be considered heavy such as a lateral raises. However, for full body exercises such as goblet or sumo squats, people neglect the proper dumbbells for training. This makes no sense because when you are performing an exercise that utilizes leverage from nearly the entire body (such as a squat), then you should be striving for more. Always. Always striving for more.

Nearly all healthy men women would be able to barbell squat the weight of their body on their backs with proper training. Intermediate strength athletes can squat nearly double their weight. Elite strength athletes can squat 3x or more of their own bodyweight. Have some perspective.

PRO TIP: If the exercise is DB Sumo Squats for 8 reps and your previous best was 40lbs, then you should begin the set with a 50 lb dumbbell and get as many reps as possible. Rest if needed, then continue getting reps on the exercise till you achieve the total amount.

Sumo Squat

Sumo Squat

–> Do the same thing in a future workout and I’ll bet you get more than four reps at the beginning, thus gaining strength.

The above described technique would be called, “rest-pause,” and it is yet another pathway to gains.

Begin the first set with the greatest intensity. 

2. Go to failure… sometimes.

What is going to failure? Going to failure means that you do as many reps as you can and then trying for another rep and failing on the last rep (or even ending squeezing some partial reps out at the end). I want to outline some benefits and some reservations about going to failure.

If the exercise is safe for you, then decide to actually take it to the limit. Maybe the workout calls for 8 reps, but you choose a weight that you could squeeze 12 out of… then you need to hit all 12 or go heavier asap.

I’ve said it many times also: you can get stronger without going heavier. Going heavier is just the most popular way.

Either way, you’ve GOT to push it!!! Going to failure is a highly successful training technique reserved for those with perseverance, pain tolerance, and people who value recovery from intense stimulus.

Get in the habit of trying to lift heavier things

Get in the habit of trying to lift heavier things

Pros of going to Failure: You will break down the muscle tissue allowing your body to recover and get stronger. Motor neurons and neural pathways are enhanced, metabolism is increased (both during recovery and resting due to increased muscle tone), and going to failure may release beneficial body re-composition hormones.

Cons of going to Failure: Will probably be really sore (but some people love this). Main concern is that if you do it frequently, you could burn out the central nervous system and lead to diminishing returns over time. Aka over-training.

If you want to go to failure, communicate that to your coach. I would be right there with you making sure you were safe and encouraging you.

3. Live by the Treadmill Inclines (Sprints are best)

Running incline is the best option for gaining strength at Orangetheory. I swear by it, I almost always run at a higher incline than 1 per cent.

People who use 1% incline and running 7.5 mph for pushes and never faster will deceive themselves into thinking that’s enough. While the heart rate may elevate, the rest of the body will adapt to the stimulus and less likely the fat is to burn off. You need to go faster OR use higher inclines.

I know that some coaches at OTF will encourage you to commit to being a walker, runner, or jogger but for people who want to gain strength that’s not the best idea.

We often talk about workouts with regard to Power, Strength, and Endurance — this is based on the energy systems of the body.

Power: 1-20 seconds

Strength: 1-60 seconds (power/strength overlap)

Endurance: 60 seconds or more, or when using light weights

Sample treadmill workout

If the coach calls for… you could choose to…

3 minute push: Powerwalking 12% incline, 4.5 mph.

1 minute base: Powerwalking 8% incline, 3.5+ mph

1 minute push: 4% incline sprint

1 minute base: Powerwalking 4% incline, 3.0+ mph

30 second all-out: 7% incline sprint

In any future workout, you could hit the same sprint speed, just at 1% higher than last time. You can even make progressions with .5% incline or even .1 mph would count as a progression. There are TOO MANY VARIATIONS that there is NO REASON to always perform sprints at the same parameters everytime. You will plateau.

Sprints and spinach

Sprints and spinach

Running 2% at 13mph is different than running 1% at 13mph. Not a lot different, but different enough to have inherent value with regard to training stimulus and getting stronger. If you’ve run 12 mph before, then why not try 11.7 mph at a 2% higher incline than last time?

In other words, experiment with as many combinations of inclines and sprint speeds as possible! Then go back to a previous best and challenge it for better.

Pro Tip: Most effective treadmill parameters for strength feature incline greater than 1%!

Be a part of this

I hope these tips help. Be a part of this. Post, comment, share, email me. I want to build this around you.

We didn’t even talk about nutrition in this post, while that continues to play an ever important role in gaining strength, tone, everything fitness you want.

 

 

Fat Loss Fitness Orangetheory Fitness Seattle Orangetheory Seattle

3 Benefits of Glute dominant exercisee

This brief article is about reasons to drive your hips

Hip drive. Hip extension. Glute work. Here are the benefits:

1. Mind the muscle

You can promote neural connections between the brain and the important postural glute muscles. Prevent and manage neural disease or degeneration. Properly move the spine through the hip range of motion.

2. Helps against knee pain

A lot of people have had incidence of pain in the knees at some point in their lives and that doesn’t feel good. So we train the hips through a pain-free range of motion and the knees benefit from the stabilization and strengthening of the surrounding muscles of the legs.

TRX hip raise  w/ squeeze at top

TRX hip raise w/ squeeze at top (TRX on Amazon)

3. Feels good, body image 

If a person thinks they have a nice backside, they might feel really good about themselves.  I would exercise it and train it and then recover it. Make it perform better in the fitness workout so that you can recover it and do something more.

Exercise selections for group workout options: GLUTE training emphasis

This is a list of exercise ideas:

  • Some squat variations
  • Lying on your back 
    • Feet Suspended hip hinging (TRX / STRAPS) 3×8
    • AB dolly glute bridge / bosu glute bridge / feet on ground hip thrust 3×12 (if not 7/10 intensity or higher, then add more weight)
  • Hip hinge, deadlift patterns:
  • More lunges 
  • On hand, bodyweight
    • Donkey kick, leg raises, glute raises (bench/bosu)

Choose some specific exercise or exercises to focus on getting better in 30 days and you will also get a good glute workout

Making progression the resistance is important. First, select then exercise you want to focus on, then practice it at least twice a week and at most four times per week.

MODNAYMOTIVATION

EXAMPLE MODIFICATIONS

1. The Lunge Day

Start with your favorite lunge and go heavy/hard for no more than eight reps. Then move on to  a slightly less challenging weight and add 2-4 reps higher.Select different lunge variations and train various directions of motion whether onto a bench or not.

The most important thing is that you do something heavier or more challenging on the first round when you are the most fresh.

2. Squat and hip bridge combo

Start heavy/hard and then progress to higher rep schemes as you move on to different squat variations.

Start with heavy power bench squat with hips sitting as far back into it as possible while controlling the tempo. Add some weighted jump squats and then iso squat holds in several different lowered positions.

After the squats, perform exercises lying on your back to give your spine muscles some time to rest while you continue the focus of your glutes. Bridges, single leg raises could be feet onto a bench, trx, or any apparatus.

3. Deadlifts and core training combination

Any deadlift variation will strengthen the core and glutes. Then add some ab dolly pikes, TRX knee tucks, mountain climbers w/ leg raise combo etc. Also you can continue training your hip/glute bridging as it works the glutes without stressing the spine. Glute bridging/hip thrusts/hip raises definitely helps the cause.

Rest and recover after the workouts

Thanks for reading and stay tuned!

Fat Loss Fitness Orangetheory Fitness Seattle Orangetheory Seattle

How to Modify the Orangetheory workout for Gains in Fitness and Fat Loss

The instructor should be curious about your physical condition

I learn about a person’s fitness history by asking open ended questions. We can figure out the program together.

Before I get to the tips, I wanted to mention types of people who may be interested in modifying their workouts.

People who may be interested:

a. person wanting to burn fat

b. person wanting to improve lean muscle tone 

c. Trainees who seek balanced workout programs (aka promoting joint health and longevity with fitness)

Tip #1 Focus on the postural muscles (also do one side at a time for added benefit when possible)

The first tip is to improve your strength/skill in movements that most powerfully engage the leg, glute, and back muscles. These moves may reduce the loss of function could reverse problems associated with sitting too much.

  • Core and back 
    • TRX/STRAPS Inverted Row
    • Single arm bent over row
    • Single arm TRX/STRAPS Row
    • TRX/STRAPS Rollouts
    • Ab Dolly Rollouts
  • Upper body power
    • Med ball tricep push up (progress by elevating the feet, or performing alternating leg lifts during reps)
    • Single-arm DB bench press
    • Kneeling clap push ups, power push ups
    • Single-arm DB standing overhead press
    • Single-arm clean and press
  • Legs with Glute emphasis
    • Bench step ups, step downs (where front foot stays on the bench), and single leg squats on a bench
    • Reverse lunge especially practicing the hinging at the hips
    • Single leg glute bridges, hip bridge, hip thrusts, weighted swings
    • Single leg deadlift with emphasis on hinging at the hips and driving the glute in order to propel the core
    • When glutes are activated properly, SQUATS, squats, squats and all of its variations 

You can perform these movements if other exercises make you feel pain OR if you really want to focus on that area of your body (totally okay in many cases). You may just need to strengthen the core and tone the back muscles until you start feeling really vital again.

Or go for the glutes and revitalize the foundation of your spine.

Tip #2 Burn Fat with Power-Walking and HIIT: 2-4xHIIT and up to 7/days week of low-moderate intensity such as making walking more part of your lifestyle and Power-Walking for fat loss

While there are people who recover well from workouts naturally, most of us need to get some decent rest and a fair amount of calories. It’s true that most fat burn comes from after the workout.

itshiit

High Intensity Interval Training is the great torch of fat loss. On the other hand, you can’t do it all the time due to the very nature of the intensity (or intended intensity).HIIT is not good for the body when it is over-done.

Walking is like boiling for fat loss as opposed to torching, still effective for steaming the fat away. Power walkers practice a relatively challenging yet sometimes uncomfortable stride which can glide to fat loss accomplishments.

So go walking more and more. Walk. Eat and then go for a walk. Walk the extra mile.

If you are working out more than four days a week, you will probably feel better by making some days exclusively for walking especially at inclines.

Tip #3 Do the most challenging variation that you are capable of

Almost every exercise can be regressed into the most basic form or progressed into advanced skill challenges.

The more you progress, the better the fat loss. Gaining strength is more about the physical adaptations of the central nervous system and less about the true size of the musculature. Considering how much energy and metabolism the brain is responsible for, it should help you understand that the recovery from progressive training techniques is where the real fat burn lives strongly.

Strength is a skill. 

To gain strength, you must become more skillful about the movements which allows you to continue moving heavier weights. These physical skills promote healthy neural adaptations throughout the entire body so that a long, active, and mobile lifestyle is achievable for years to come.

In other words, when you do it harder, the brain tells the fat to burn.

Intense Workouts + Recovery are the catalysts and synergy for fat loss

Do hard workouts, consume high antioxidant and plant strong diets and get the rest you deserve. Then the fat has no options, it is taking a trip goodbye and the energy no longer acts as a redundant reservoir of excess energy on your body.

Let the fat boil, burn, or torch itself away!

Good luck stay tuned thank you for reading…

 

Fitness Orangetheory Fitness Seattle Orangetheory Seattle