For tired dads in need of an energy boost, to tone up or to shift that beer belly – personal trainer Sam Burrows imparts his fitness wisdom. But first, we hear how he got into training and why he thinks it’s so important to keep fit…
Sam Burrows lives in south London with his wife, the singer Jessie Ware. He works as a personal trainer – offering one-to-one sessions as well as group fitness. Here, he shares some tips for men looking to tone up – and a mini workout to try at home.
What do you do?
I’m a personal trainer and my sessions focus on callisthenics (bodyweight exercises) to improve my clients’ strength and endurance. I studied at Premier Fitness in north London to get the initial qualification, but I continue to spend most of the money I earn on courses to develop my knowledge.
What’s more important: the way we look or the way we feel?
Exercise makes you feel better and this is far more important than the way you look. It’s a bonus that exercise also improves the way you look.
Are people becoming increasingly interested in health and fitness?
I would say so, yes. I’m not sure whether it’s because I work as a trainer and so now I notice people exercising outdoors but my local park (Brockwell Park) is full of runners and people doing classes.
We’re lucky in London to have parks with dedicated fitness areas and it’s great seeing people putting them to good use. As well as training my clients in south London parks, where I live, I also use a gym in Hackney Downs called Barber’s Gym.
Some tips for men looking to lose the beer belly?
Firstly, stop drinking beer; calories should be eaten not drunk. Men are generally shaped like apples – holding extra weight around the waist – and women like pears. The best way to get rid of belly fat is circuit training or HIIT (high intensity interval training).
I wouldn’t advise HIIT training to a beginner – you shoulder start with basic circuit training programs to improve cardiovascular fitness, strength and flexibility and then give HIIT a go after a couple of months, when your body is ready for a challenge.
But most importantly: get out there and move your body. If you’re into a sport then start doing some physical exercise to improve your cardiovascular fitness. Do something you enjoy like swimming, tennis or football.
When you think you’re ready to do some exercise with a trainer, get in touch with someone who can help you with nutrition and create a tailored exercise program. The results you get should be enough motivation to keep you going until you reach your goal.
How much should we be exercising?
How much you ‘should’ be exercising a week depends on your goals – but to maintain general health you should be active every day. Cycle to work and don’t sit on a crowded bus, walk to the shops don’t drive. It really does make a difference. It’s shocking to see how unfit some people are because we’ve become so sedentary due to our jobs and lifestyle.
Keep fit with Sam Burrows
Start by doing the fundamentals – functional movements like:
Put these movements together, repeat five or ten times each, and you have yourself an effective circuit that will improve your strength and cardiovascular fitness.
Are you a dad, keen to keep fit? And if so, could you squeeze this exercise regime into your day? Let us know what you think in the comment section below…