Protein supplementation has been around for more than fifty years now. Back in the days, protein powder were tasting very bad, were hard on the stomach and had the texture of sand. Not the best post workout meal…
Time and technology have done us a great favor: modern protein supplementation is now tasty, rich and packed with nutrients. But is it really suitable for everyone?
There are various type of protein powders available on the market so for a non-connoisseur, being confronted to so many options, tastes (sometimes even after tastes…), packaging and usage directions can be a little daunting.
I’ve compiled for you the main types of proteins powders that you can find in Bangkok. I won’t go over which brand tastes best or which brand has Oreo cookie flavor, because it’s a matter of personal preference.
Instead, I’d like to give you some advice as to which proteins suit your goals, how to take them and why you should care.
The most common protein powders are prepared using whey. Whey is a by product of milk. You obtain this liquid after regular milk has been curdled. It is made up of high quality protein and devoid of fats. This substance is found in most protein based products. Musashi for instance, carries two types of whey protein powders: WPI and WPC, which stand for Whey Protein Isolate and Whey Protein Concentrate, respectively.
WPI is a finer, better filtered version of the WPC, it is thus a little bit more expensive and core fitness enthusiasts swear by protein powders that are isolate, because they are supposed to be easier than digest and assimilate than their counterpart.
WHEY & SUGAR (aka post workout protein powders)
Although it never labeled as ‘whey & sugar’, typical post workout powders contain more simple carbohydrates than actual protei. They’re obviously indicated post workout, because they provide a much-needed source of fast acting sugar that will help replenish glycogen in your muscles and act as a shuttle for the protein to be transported and absorbed.
Not everyone needs to lose fat, some people actually have a lot of trouble putting on some weight. Gainer powders are extremely high calorie (as much as 1,400 kcal per serving…) and are definitely not suitable for the fitness goer. Even if you notice you hardly gain any weight despite a good diet and an appropriate weight program, it is generally a good idea to get yourself assessed by a professional before even considering taking ‘gainer’. Based on a few physical and morphological findings, he’ll quickly be able to define your body type (ectomorph – skinny, endormorph – propensity to carry some extra pounds here and there, mesomorph – lean and muscular).
Usually people are a good mix of two or more body types, though so be sure to know where you stand before taking these calorie-laden shakes.
There are of course other types of protein powders (soy based, mixed-source, 92, long-acting, etc…) but I omitted them on purpose because they are used in specific situations and are designed for more advanced athletes.
You’ll get plenty of very good results with the protein powder I mentioned above, believe me.
Do you need advice on your fitness diet? reach us on Twitter here : @fitcorpasia.
- Published in Fitness
Most weekend warriors and froghair primadonnas outthere have something in common: they don’t exercise (clubhouse parties excluded).
The much-maligned Tiger Woods once said that his level was mostly the result of sweating it out in the gym. To many though, it seems that golf is all about technique or worse, all about equipment. While this is partly true, we should never forget that golf is a real sport after all. Football players don’t only train on their penalty shots and their corners, do they?
Why most golfers consider physical conditioning irrelevant to their sport is something that I’ve trouble grasping. In order to play and perform better, the practice of golf fitness is helping an increasingly high number of golf enthusiasts.
Mixing sport-specific exercises with general fitness training, golf fitness should be an essential part of every golfer, no matter their level. Improvements in your swing and in your general game most likely won’t come from watching dvd’s explaining the intricacies of proper golf movements. Increases in power, flexibility, endurance and speed will come from scientifically-backed exercises. Here at the Aspire Club we’re passionate about golf and we’re always looking into the latest developments in technology to bring you cutting-edge workout sessions that guarantee you long lasting results and a fast track to bettering your game.
One of the most central aspect of golf fitness training resides in the strengthening of the core. Your abdominal wall, your pelvis and your back all contribute to maintain your body stable and your posture upright. The joint action of these muscles provide the necessary support during movement. A weak core can lead to imbalances and thus can seriously hamper your game. In order to get your swing to the next level, it is vital to focus on exercises that involve the abs, the obliques and the spinal erector as well.
Here are a few simple exercises that will help you a great deal in your quest for swing swagger:
Contract your core, keep your back as straight as possible and hold this position for 30 to 45 seconds. Once you’re used to the movement and have gotten stronger, you can add some weight on your back to add intensity.
Position yourself as though you were preparing to do a push-up. Instead of lowering you body, keep it straight and push your leg forward as pictured. Keep your chin up for perfect form. Alternate and do 10 to 12 reps per leg. This will strenghten your glutes, hamstrings and lower back. These muscles are responsible for swing velocity and explosiveness.
Bent knee hip extensions
The biggest mistake most people make when they are trying to get into shape, is they want to do it all at once.
They may have let themselves go for years, or even decades, and they wish to get their body back to the way it used to be, as quickly as humanly possible. They would be much better served, taking the attitude that fitness is a marathon, rather than a sprint.
In a sprint, you need to start quickly, right off the blocks. You should keep your pace up the entire time. In a marathon, you can make up for a slow start later on, well before the finish line. You need to pace yourself if you are going to make it to the finish line.
TOO MUCH TOO FAST
The problem is, most people start their fitness program with too much, too soon. It took them a long to get in their current condition. Getting out of it is also going to take quite a bit of time. As cliche as it sounds, it really is true, that it’s not about the destination. It’s all about the journey.
The fact is, fitness is not a destination. It’s like the Steven Wright joke, where he said he took his dog for a 500 mile walk and when they got home he told the dog, “That’s it. You’re done.” Fitness isn’t like that. You are never done. It’s a process of feeling better each day. Enjoy it. Don’t rush it.
If you are more than fifty pounds overweight, you are better off walking briskly instead of jogging. You’d be surprised how effective walking is, when you do it every day, or every other day. You’re bones and joints will not been injured like they might if you were jogging.
Your muscles will not feel as beat up. Your body will look forward to your daily exercise when you are taking the appropriate steps. As you lose weight and gain muscle, you can progressively increase the level of workouts. This way, you will stick with your fitness program as a lifestyle, instead of simply give it up after a few weeks.
Self-motivation and self-discipline are sometimes not enough to overcome some hurdles and break through training plateaus and that’s exaclty when the Aspire Club Bangkok comes into the picture. We provide support, we keep you accountable and we promise our training plans and nutrition programs won’t let you down.
- Published in Fitness
Here’s a 30 minute workout built for explosiveness, cardio and strength. This type of functional training is what we love here at the Aspire Club. Now it’s for you to practice what we preach!
After a thorough 10-15 minute warm up (treadmill @ 4-5 mph)you can start. Note that these exercises are supposed to be performed by clusters of 3 (divided in phases as you’ll see).
It’s a kind of circuit training that you’ll have to perform as follows :
Phase 1 , first group – perform exercise number 1 to 3 with the prescribed repetitions 3 times in a row. Then rest for 2-3 minutes and proceed to the second phase. Repeat as phase 1, then rest and proceed to the last phase. This way you’ll have performed 3 sets of each of the 9 exercises for a total of 27 sets in 30 minutes.
You’ve been warned: this routine is extremely taxing but also extremely effective!
EXERCISE 1 : HALF-SQUAT WITH JUMPS (IF YOUR JOINTS PERMIT)
8 TO 10 REPETITIONS (load the barbell so you can reach the 10th rep with difficulty but still with good form)
EXERCISE 2 : AB-BALL
12 to 15 REPETITIONS
EXERCISE 3 : WEIGHTED PUSH-UPS (BEGINNERS : PUSH-UPS ON YOUR KNEES)
8 to 10 REPETITIONS (if you feel like the exercice is too easy add some weight on your back)
AFTER COMPLETING THESE 3 EXERCISES 3 TIMES IN A ROW, REST FOR 2-3 MINUTES THEN MOVE ON TO THE NEXT PHASE.
EXERCISE 1 : BALL ROLLS
10 to 12 REPETITIONS
EXERCISE 2 : ONE LEGGED JUMPS (DAMPEN YOUR LANDING!)
5-6 REPETITIONS PER LEG
EXERCISE 3 : LUMBAR PULL
AFTER COMPLETING THESE 3 EXERCISES 3 TIMES IN A ROW, REST FOR 2-3 MINUTES THEN MOVE ON TO THE NEXT PHASE.
EXERCICE 1 : DUMBBELL WITH BALL (TWO PHASES EXERCISE: BACK LIFT + BICEPS CURLS SIMULTANEOUSLY)
8-10 REPETITIONS (DON’T ALTERNATE BICEPS CURLS)
EXERCISE 2 : BUTTOCK LIFTS (ADD RESISTANCE IN CASE THIS EXERCISE FEELS TOO EASY)
8-12 REPETITIONS PER LEG
EXERCISE 3 : MEDICINE BALL JUMP
You’re done! Let us know if this grueling workout left you unfazed or completely swept you off your feet! Don’t forget to stretch and cool down after you’ve completed it! We wouldn’t want you to complain that your whole body has turned into one giant sore muscle!
We have much more workout ideas in store for you. Why don’t you pay us a visit at our brand new studio on Sukhumvit ? The Aspire Club Bangkok is your go-to fitness destination. Whether you enjoy working out under full supervision or like to break a sweat with friends, we’ve got you covered.
- Published in Personal Training
Fitness magazines and so-called fitness pundits love to flood their audience with the same old messages year after year.
Summer’s coming? Try our orange-only diet!
Winter’s coming? Then try our 14-day watery soup diet!
Summer’s gone? Why don’t you try our brand new ‘don’t eat until noon’ diet?
I’ve never been too fond of those standardized diets that are supposed to work wonders on everyone. Everybody has a different metabolism, different reactions to different foods, and thus using a run-of-the-mill magazine diet doesn’t make any sense at all. Instead of being hell-bent on losing that extra inch on the waist by turning into a diet maniac, let’s approach the problem from a different angle: by making small, gradual changes to your diet over a period of time you won’t feel like you’ve been imprisoned and banned from opening the fridge ever again.
We are creatures of habits, changing them is a long process, not a 2 week sprint. Give yourself just 3 months to completely rethink what foods define you and what acceptable substitutes you’d be ready to use in order to get healthier and therefore slimmer.
Usually people want to get slim first, without even thinking what impact it can have on their health when the trim-down is done wihtout any regards to proper nutrition.
Below is a substitute chart that you can use as a basis to redefine your diet on the long term.
Most frequently used carbs
Whole grain bread, 50/50 bread (half white flour, half whole flour)
Whole grain pasta, spinach-based pasta, tomato-based pasta
Gabba rice/whole grain rice
Most frequently used vegetables
Most frequently used protein
The short list of substitutes I’ve mentioned here are to be used as a starting point and they all are, without exception, far superior in terms of health benefits. Saying no to a fat, juicy hamburger is still too hard ? Cheat please! A simple rule of thumb will greatly help you in your quest for a better figure (outside AND most importantly inside) : 90/10.
Nutritionally, if you stay on track with your substitutes 90% of time you’re allowed to cheat hard 10% of the time. Suicidal? Not at all, consider this as a just reward for your efforts. Eat clean, go easy on the salad dressing and exercise each and every day except on Sunday. Sunday is truly your pig out day. have a burger with fries and wash it down with an ice-cold coke. This reward will help you cope with the change and the beauty of it all is that you don’t even have to feel guilty about it! Used to clean, wholesome foods, your body won’t have the chance to even notice that you cheated it of a healthy meal.
At the Aspire Club, we don’t talk non-sense, we don’t sell miracle pills. Instead, we listen to our clients and come up with training and diet plans that are unique and individual, no fast food fitness here!
Call today 02 229 4114 or email us for a free discovery nutrition session
- Published in Nutrition
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Thailand Fitness Company, Fitcorp Asia Opens the First Commercial Simulated Altitude Training Center in South East Asia at The Aspire Club.
(Bangkok, December 1, 2011) Fitcorp Asia, Thailand’s leading personal training, fitness and sports performance company launches Asia’s first simulated Altitude training center at the Aspire Club in Bangkok. SAT, also known as Hypoxic training, where individuals train at simulated altitude environment at heights of 5000m above sea level forces the body to (more…)
If you’re like me, you must spend an awful lot of time waiting for the customs officer to wake up, waiting for the conveyor belt to belch out your luggage, waiting for the hotel receptionist to process your credit card…
You’re a frequent flyer but have very little time to dedicate to maintaining your shape ? Read on because I’d like to introduce you to your new best friend.
Instead of making up excuses or wasting precious business hours trying to find a decent gym when you’re stuck in Kuala Lumpur on a connect flight to Jakarta, why don’t you train in your own personal fitness facility ? Yes, your hotel room is perfectly suitable. Whether it’s small or comprised of four bathrooms, you can make the best of it by taking a few simple steps towards repurposing it.
Start by making some space and push aside any furniture that’s within two meters of where you stand. Now that you’re all set, let the 10-minute corporate fitness session begin!
SIDE PLANK HOLD–FEET, LEFT SIDE
Lay on your Left Side and Left Forearm. Lift your hips and knees from the floor, resting your weight onto the side of your foot and forearm. Hold for 30-60 seconds.
This is one tough core exercise that targets your Obliques. Your objective is to stay in a good neutral alignment, with your chest out. Breathe deeply and slowly! HOLD FOR 30-60 SECONDS BEFORE MOVING TO THE OTHER SIDE.
Lay on your Right Side and Right Forearm. Lift your hips and knees from the floor, resting your weight onto the side of your foot and forearm. Hold for 30-60 seconds.
This is one tough core exercise that targets your Obliques. Your objective is to stay in a good neutral alignment, with your chest out. Breathe deeply and slowly through your nose! HOLD FOR 30-60 SECONDS BEFORE MOVING TO THE OTHER SIDE.
Begin in a ready-squat position. Imagine your hips are sitting backward into a chair.
Using the power of your Glutes, jump up into the air.
Make sure you land directly into the squat-ready position, with your hips back “into the chair.”
This is a very challenging lower body exercise that requires power and endurance. Beginners focus on leaving the ground only an inch or so, like an accelerated squat. As you become more advanced and feel comfortable, you can begin to jump higher. PERFORM 5-10 REPETITIONS BEFORE MOVING TO THE NEXT EXERCISE.
Repeat these exercises three times in a row for a complete 10-minute workout that can be done anywhere (provided that you have a purple rug handy).
Please share your thoughts on twitter and reach us @fitcorpasia we’d be more than happy to get your feedback about our articles!
High intensity interval training is simply put, the best way to achieve more with your training while actually exercising less.
To hell with the grueling, two hour long training sessions. To hell with the gargantuan weights. To hell with the treadmill rat race. More is less with HIIT and here is what you need to know to jump on the training effectiveness bandwagon.
HIIT is not a fad, it’s not complicated and it’s certainly not too elite for you. Actually HIIT is a generic training method that can be applied to a wide range of physical activities : running, biking, swimming or even rowing. The principle is similar to firing a weapon: in order to accurately hit your target, would you rather keep the trigger squeezed until you empty the clip hoping that a bullet will hit the target or fire short, controlled bursts to make sure you hit the bullseye?
If you aspire to become a marksman one day, chances are that your shooting instructor told you not to go berserk on the trigger. Well, HIIT is basically the same : in order to produce the best results in terms of fat loss, cardiovascular strengthening and body toning, you need to keep your sessions short but intense. Combining explosive effort with periods of rest at regular intervals will keep your body on its toes and prevent you from ever plateauing.
As I said, HIIT principles can be used for any type of sport, so without further ado, I’d like to show you a sample workout that you can test and try at home before you duke it out with a personal coach.
A sample HIIT workout for beginners
Since beaches, ponds and pools are never far away in Bangkok, here is a HIIT swimming workout routine.
Warm up (We’ll never say it enough, a proper warm-up is crucial, whatever sport you engage in. This is even truer when you add HIIT in the mix) : get the blood flowing, stretch and prime your muscles. If you swim in an olympic-sized pool, swim a couple of laps. Duration : 6-8 min.
When you’re ready, start as follows :
45 seconds, high velocity sprint (freestyle) followed by 1’30” of light swim or paddling
Repeat for 15 minutes.
When you’re done with your training, get out of the pool and hit the treadmill for another 15 minutes, keep your intensity low but steady. As a duly deserved reward you can treat yourself with a creamy protein shake and some good carbs like a banana and a handful of oats (simple and complex carbs to cover the full spectrum).
”But it’s too short!” Remember that this very simple routine is made for beginners and I can tell you that if you did it correctly ‘too short’ is not the first thing that’ll spring to your mind but rather something like ‘I’m dead!’ or ‘this is insane!’. The goal here is not to train longer, but to train smarter and better.
After such a workout, your hgh (human growth hormones) will go through the roof and will trigger a cascade of beneficial chemicals reactions in your body. Use this method and fine tune the intensity to your liking (by reducing the rest time for instance) and witness your whole body undergo a plastic transformation that even the best Hollywood doctor won’t be able to match!
Talk about it with our very knowledgeable trainers at The Aspire Club. They’ll give you tons of tips and tricks to get you started in a flash and they will help you kick down doors you thought were invicible.
Contact us : 02 229 4114 or email us
- Published in Fitness
With its millions of people sweating it out on upbeat latino tunes, Zumba fitness has definitely left its mark on the fitness scene. For better or worse.
If you’ve ever walked in a traditional gym, you’ve probably noticed that some space – sometimes even full floors – is dedicated to group training with programs ranging from spinning classes to Tae Bo-inspired workouts. Fitness enthusiasts and weekend warriors alike are hungry for variety and always on the lookout for new, hopefully revolutionary ways to lose unwanted pounds with a minimum of effort.
The Zumba fitness craze is a testament to this : easy to pick and hard to put down, zumba classes mix dance with fitness moves seamlessly in an attempt to make the classes less hard for beginners, more fun and seemingly less taxing on the body. Although I’d love to sing its praises, there are a few things about that conga-driven fad that bother me.
Hard on the joints
Whether it’s merengue, reggaeton or salsaton, Zumba will have you jump around like it’s 1992 all over again. Needless to say, this constant stress on the knees and ankles is not exactly good for your joints. Besides, Zumba sessions typically last about 60 minutes and involve deep lunges, ankle twists and other rhythm-laced moves that will give your physiotherapist night sweats.
The issue is not intensity here, but duration: working out for 60 minutes using a variety of exercices and balancing upper and lower body is perfectly fine even for people with weak joints. Problems arise when you spend a whole hour doing the same moves, however often the music style you’re doing those moves on changes.
I don’t deny it, a Zumba training session will get your heart pumping and your feet stomping. But is it enough to warrant and effective and efficient work out ?
This training method focuses heavily on cardio-vascular stress to promote fat loss. What its conceptors forgot though, is the importance of resistance. After a month or two of zumba training you will have become a club (or ballroom) legend with your limitless moves and swag, but you’ll also have stagnated a big deal in the muscle toning department.
Aside from involving pretty much only your legs and heart during the work out, Zumba will leave the rest of your body intact of any stress. You won’t feel any soreness in the upper body afterwards and I can guarantee that common problems areas like tricpes in women or abdomen in men are largely left unaddressed.
Bootcamps have you covered
Although it’s very tempting to try something new like Zumba, I would advise you to rather stick to tried and true methods. Our Bootcamps combine the full spectrum of fitness exercises and you will get a much bigger bang for your buck. Functional training, plyometrics, pure cardio, body weight resistance…It’s all there in our bootcamps! I know I might come across as reactionary and rigid, for once I don’t really mind: Zumba fitness is not what you need if you’re looking for solid, long-term results.
Pay us a visit and we’ll happily discuss with you what type of training suits you best.
Contact the Aspire Club or any of the personal trainers and fitness coaches at Fitcorp Asia in Bangkok on 02 229 4114 or email us
- Published in Fitness