Should you workout when ill?

One question I get quite a bit, and often discuss with my PT clients, is whether you should work out when you’re ill.
These views are my personal opinions, and I feel it’s pretty individual to the person. If you are in doubt, I would say do not workout, until you are back to normal.

With any kind of illness, be it viral or bacterial, you’re body will be working overtime to fight this infection, and so “clean” nutrition and water, is essential to help speed the bodies response, and assist your immune system.

** If you have a virus, chest infection, or temperature, definitely DO NOT WORK OUT. These are some pretty severe symptoms, and you will be doing your body more harm than good by working out. **

However, if you just have the sniffles, or a slight sore throat, and you work out regularly, then there should be no harm in doing a light workout. Certainly do not work to failure, or a challenging set of intervals!

Personally, I do not work out when I feel ill. My body tends to ache and I find that resistance work makes my muscles and body feel worse the next day, and I’d rather rest, eat and drink water, and get myself back to near 100% before returning. Also, if I’m ill and can’t work, I lose money as I’m self-employed!! I always steer clear of big exercises when ill, as I’ve performed Squats a few times when slightly ill, and my body has ached big time for a few days afterwards – but that could just be me!!

Just remember, any form of exercise is a stress on the body, and when it is already stressed though illness, you could be doubling the effort the body is going through to rid the illness.
Often a rest from the gym can be as good as a workout in terms of recovery to the body. Plus, if you’re goal is weight loss, remember the key is nutrition, so it would be more crucial to watch what, and how, you ate during this period, rather than whether you should be working out or not.

At the first signs of illness, or sore throat, I will dose up with Echinnacea and Olive Leaf extract. If I keep these running, I find the symptoms will dissapear in a few days, or if I caught it late, the symptoms will be a lot less severe than what they would have been without this supplementation. If you choose to take these, just ensure you continue for a few days after symptoms have dissapeared to ensure the virus/bacteria has been erradicated.

What are your views? Do you workout when ill?
NOTE: This is my personal view, and I will not be held responsible for any injury or illness that could be sustained from following my views above. If in doubt do not workout when ill, and contact your GP. (Mark)


Heed the warning signs!!

Yesterday, I had to take my car to the garage to have the cam belt changed. I’d been holding off, as to me, a non-mechanical sort of person, it seemed like a waste of money! It was going to cost me over £300, for something that, at the time, didn’t seem like I needed.
(Supposedly the cam belt, or timing belt, has a lot to do with the running of the engine, and the valve system?! Who know’s I’m just a PT?!)
However, I was already 8,000 miles and a couple of years over the recommended time for changing it, so felt now was as good a time as any!
If the cam belt snaps, I’ve heard that the damage to the engine can often be beyond repair – so with this in the back of my mind, I collected the car and paid my money.

Driving home, the car felt, and drove no better, and part of me thought, “What a waste of £300!”, but looking logically, it was overdue, needed to be done, and if it had snapped, I would be looking at a much larger bill!

If you compare this with your exercise and nutrition regime, there could be comparisons.

Sometimes you may think, “oh it won’t matter if I have this cake today, or take-away meal tonight, it won’t do that much harm”, but if you don’t pay attention to your intake on a regular basis, it WILL mount up and eventually YOU WILL pay the price!
Yes, you can get away with things for a short period of time, but keep pushing the risks, or don’t pay attention to the warning signs, and the end cost could be a big shock, and something you weren’t planning for.

Be it eating too many, or the wrong type of calories, or performing exercises incorrectly, or with bad posture, the bad side of things will catch with you in the end!

Address the underlying issue for long term results

I see Kerry Katona (a very minor ‘celebrity’ to my readers outside of the UK!) has recently spent a reported £10,000 on liposuction and other weight loss surgery.
Quite amazing really, when she declared herself bankrupt late last year?!

No doubt a few of those shocking TV appearances, or magazine sob-story articles paid for most of it.

However, mark my words, some point this year, she will no doubt be back to the size she was more recently.
Kerry obviously has underlying issues, alcohol has been named as one, and I’ll not dare guess at others, but if the underlying issue to her weight gain, unhappiness, and emotional problems are still there, then you are not addressing the root cause. She has just given herself a short-term solution, but with the underlying issues, they will fight themselves to the top, as negative issues do, and take control again.

If you are on a fat loss programme, ensure you address the initial cause first, and prepare for those obstacles.
Do you eat too much junk food or processed food?
Do you exercise?

Do you drink too much?
Do you eat through boredom?
Do you eat badly through lack of preparation?
Do you just make excuses?

Seek professional guidance or help if you genuinely cannot explain YOUR underlying reason, but when you have that reason, do all you can to eliminate it, find solutions, take 100% responsibility for your actions, instill a positive “can-do” mindset and you will benefit from your newly instilled confidence and goal setting.
I hope Kerry can do the same.

Pills and diets – Just an empty void

I’ve been posting on a forum recently, where some of the main topics have been;
“How do I lose weight fast?”
“Which diet pill is best for fat loss?”
“Which diet should I choose for quick weight loss?”

I decided to post, to try and give a professional, experienced view, and let these people know that the questions above have no VALID answer, or more correctly, are not even valid Questions.
You should not be thinking like that.

The problem is though, people want results, and they want them yesterday.

But what about the damage you are doing to your body, internally, where you can’t see it? Damaging organs, your hormones, your metabolism?

To the “Which diet pill?” question, I simply posted, “There isn’t one – if there was, every overweight person would be using it, and everyone would look lean, and slim!”, to which the reply came, “Actually product X has been shown to inhibit fat absorption by your body from the food you eat!”


It is not eating fat that makes you fat, it is excess calories! Be this fat, carbohydrates or protein, the basic facts are, if you’re eating more calories than your body needs, or is burning off, you will gain weight…..period.

90% of people that “go on a diet” put that weight back on or more, 3 months after finishing it. Plus the phrase, “Going on a diet” means at some point, you will be “coming off of it”. Do you really want to be trying this, then that, then this, all your life?

Stick to something that is sustainable. Please don’t endanger your health with diets, pills and potions. Stick to regular exercise, healthy, natural foods, and you will not only lose fat, but you’ll get healthier, and fitter at the same time.

Surely this is what you want, especially long term when you want to be playing with your children or grandchildren?

MRPT BootCamp comes to Godalming!

For those of you that want to get fit and lose fat this year, whilst exercising in a fun, group environment, MRPT BootCamp could be the answer! Based in Godalming, Surrey, it is already attracting interest from people in Guildford, Haslemere, and surrounding Surrey towns!

You may have joined a gym as a New Year resolution, and are starting to realise that you’re left on your own after your induction, with no nutrition advice, and a lot of useless equipment?! Click here for my YouTube video describing the number of useless machines at the gym that you’re often inducted on!

However, with my BootCamp you get my MRPT Nutrition Plan which is gives proven results with my Personal Training clients, free of charge, you get exercises which work, and advice which will help your achieve your results. Follow these guidelines, and you could be dropping a dress of trouser size in just 4 weeks!

Signup here for further BootCamp information;
If you still want to carry on at the gym, or even exercise from home then put your details into the box below and I’ll tell you if the exercises you are doing are wasting your time and effort, and advise you on those that will get you results!


I hope to see you at BootCamp! 

"Can we do some stomach exercises?!"

If I said to you, “what exercises work your core, or your abs or your stomach“, what would be your thought?

Crunches? Situps? Plank? Ab Rollers?

Sometimes I get asked at the end of our PT sessions, or have over heard at the gym “Can we do some stomach work?!”, or “we haven’t done any stomach exercises, let’s do some now!”

I give the same answer, til I’m blue in the face, but it still keeps happening!!

“You know those lunges with overhead press, the pullups, the renegade rows, the pressups, the mountain climbers, the squats? You know I keep reminding you, pull that belly button in, brace your core?!”

Well hey! Guess what?! You’ve worked your core, your abs, your stomach, and a hell of a lot more muscles, with all of those functional exercises!! If those muscles didn’t work during the exercises, your hips would have sagged, your lower back would have folded like jelly, your hips and knees would have buckled, and you would be a mess on the floor!

Your ‘core’ is always working! It is your central pillar, that keeps you upright, and assists with balance. By focusing on the above exercises, and bracing your abs/core further you are engaging those muscles to further support you, and whether you know it or not, they are getting a great workout!

It’s only people who aren’t in the know, who feel they have to finish, or sometimes even start (which is worse, as your core acts as a stabilising set of muscles for your body, and if they are fatigued at the beginning of your workout, you will not be very productive and risk injury!) their workouts with “abs” exercises, like situps, more situps and ‘specific abs’ exercises.

Sure, if you want to hit your core further, add in some cable rotations, wood chops, sledgehammers etc, but make sure they are at the end, and aren’t the main focus of your workout.

How hard is it to get Help?!

How hard is it to get help nowadays?!

You either have to pay for it up front, or there is some hidden extra, and you will pay, in some form, somewhere down the line.

I’m currently marketing my upcoming BootCamps. Shouldn’t be hard I thought, choose a park, get some leaflets, emails, blog and web information up and get planning.


Not only do I have to pay the local parks to use them, I’ve since found that the initial cost they quoted me will go up after 4 weeks! So much for trying to get some use out of our under-used parks, and helping the local community get fitter and lose some weight?! (I’m off to Australia in February, and their parks are over-run with children, adults, playing games, exercising etc. Sure the weather helps, but when they put up basic exercise equipment such as pullup stations, hurdles, bars etc, they are actively encouraging people to use them)

Today, I decided to go and visit some of the local shops in town, and see if I could distribute some leaflets. Again, another barrier! The only ones who were really interested in helping were the small, privately run businesses, who know how challenging marketing can be, and were only happy to help out with displaying them.

Even the local library, a ‘community’ establishment, wouldn’t put a leaflet up, because I would be making money from the business! Very supportive of your local work and businesses!

Anyway, I’m an upbeat person, so I won’t let this get me down (just a quick off the chest moment!!), I’ll continue to look for additional locations, areas to market, and ensure that I get a positive outcome.

BUT! If YOU would like something for FREE, visit my Fat Loss and Fitness Forum here, where you can signup in 1minute, and start asking me and other members questions, post up workout information, get FREE advice and help, and get those 2009 goals on the right track!

You have to pay for most things, so why not make use of those that you don’t!