Fitness advice – 5 point start-up plan for Dell Corporate Challenge, 27/28 September 2014

How to kickstart your fitness training program with a 5 point plan

Prepared by Mark Whittle, GB Tri-athlete and Coach. Fitness Advisor to Dell Corporate Challenge

I hope this simple plan will assist you in preparing for the Dell Corporate Challenge, specifically the 2 day adventure race element of the challenge. You have plenty of time to prepare your body and I will be sharing lots of relevant information with you over the coming weeks and months. I hope you find it all useful.

The most common challenge that people I talk to face is how to incorporate fitness into their lives. They know they have to do something to get in shape but they really don’t know how. It can be quite off-putting because of the abundance of information out there. So much so that you may not know where to begin.

Our society has so many food choices that it is easy to pack on the extra pounds. Also our day to day jobs are far less physical as they where 100 years ago so we have more sedentary life styles. We know there are benefits involved when we exercise and clean up our diet, however, most of us don’t know how or where to start.

So where do we begin? Or is the question: How do we begin?

If you feel you are out of shape you should consider going to your doctor and get their approval to start exercising. Your doctor may also provide some helpful tips as well. After you get the OK from your doctor, try these 5 points to help you get started:

 1. Make the choice to start exercising and eating right: Making the decision to do something provides a form of commitment you make to yourself. Deciding that you need to change your behaviour creates new possibilities. When you say to your self “I need to get in shape”, it means something. You should be answering these questions in your mind: When can I work out? What exercises do I need to do? What foods should I be eating? Make yourself think about the commitment you just made. Only then you can let go of the past and take steps to move forward.

2. Write down what you do: You need a reference that is realistic towards your weekly activity. Write down everything you do during the week. This should include work hours, commuting hours, nights spent with your spouse, your child’s activities and anything else you can think of that you do. You should also include what you do on weekends. You should make a list for each day of the week, as some people set lofty goals like working out for 2 hours a day. This can be due to an old saying, “More is better”. However, this is not the case. Knowing your schedule will help you set realistic goals and help you find a few hours a week to start exercising. You’ll have a visual perspective on what you can and can’t do with your routine.

 3. Research and get information: Most people do not have enough information before they start a work out program. So how do we get the information we need? The good news is we live in the information age. Take advantage of your favourite search engine and learn a little bit about fitness and nutrition. However, do not go overboard and lose focus. Find a source of information you like and take notes. Find the simplest and easiest workouts and nutrition tips. Don’t overload yourself with information. If you prefer you can hire a personal trainer for a few sessions to help you get started. Hiring a personal trainer is a great way to get started because you have made a commitment to meet someone to workout. Your goal is to have the trainer show you the basics on exercise and eating healthier, whilst also learning the safe way to perform some of these exercises when you’re on your own.

 4. Create a simple plan and set realistic goals: Keep it simple! Following a simple plan while on a hectic schedule is much easier than following an convoluted plan. You should have a plan of which days you want to work out and a goal to change your eating habits for the next few weeks. For example, “I will work out for a half an hour for 3 days this week. I will eat a little less each meal.” Keeping it simple is a major key to success.

5. Execute your plan: Now that you have a plan, all you need to do is follow it. Sounds easy! However, this is another big step. You should look at your plan every day.

You need be mentally prepared for the great day ahead of you. Having your daily schedule in hand will help you achieve your goals for the day. When you complete your workout for the day, highlight it or cross it off your list. It will show you that you accomplished something for yourself.

I hope these things help you get started on your training for the Dell Corporate Challenge and  a new life of physical fitness. Life is filled with making decisions, knowing your commitments, getting information, planning and execution. Try these approaches for yourself and you will see that having your own workout and nutrition program is not as far fetched or complicated as you think. ends

 About Mark Whittle, of

Mark is a GB triathlete and coach. Following a long and distinguished career with the RAF maintaining fighter aircraft he is now purely focussed on triathlon and running coaching as well a personal training. Mark’s contact number is 07947  010276.

 About Dell Corporate Challenge

The Dell Corporate Challenge is a unique competitive format which has running for 9 years involving teams from leading brands such as GE, PwC, Toyota, Deloitte. The event involves teams of 6 members (plus 1 support member/ substitute) competing against up to 30 other teams in a 2 day adventure race which encompasses canoeing, trail running, hiking, mountain biking and map reading.

Event partners Cardiff Business School, a top 5 UK Business School, will be delivering the management and personal development  aspect of the event. This will involve a presentation on relevance of teams to organisation which will draw parallels between the world of elite sport and business.  This will involve a key note address and  Q & A with former Olympian Nicole Cooke MBE.

In summary, the Dell Corporate Challenge event comprises:

–  A two day adventure race  (canoeing, mountain biking, running, hiking, map reading)
–  Management  and personal development element delivered by Cardiff Business School
–  Q and A with former Olympic Champion  Nicole Cooke MBE
– Networking opportunities with Senior Executives from major UK and Global corporates
–  CSR and charity fundraising challenge
– Unique team building opportunity to deliver a range of business benefits to the returning workplace

For more information call Hywel Loveluck, Head of Organising Team on  07899 998864.

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