Darren Fittler’s Detox – the beginning is nigh

It will all start on Monday 5 May 2014 and “Bring it on” I say!

Starting from Monday, I will be abstaining from alcohol, coffee, chocolate and other similar sweet treats for 30 days, eating clean, taking certain vitimins and minerals and having 1 food free day per week. And so will my friend and training buddy Dirk Venter.

I thought it would be useful for me, and maybe you too, for me to chronicle my journey. So, each week I will write a little about what I eat and drink, my mood and my general thoughts on things.

And what would a challenge like this be without some before measurements and some photos?!

Now, I am not normally one for getting my shirt off in public and I am somewhat aprehensive about putting this one up on the Internet. But doing so will keep me motivated and, hey, what’s an after photo if there is no before shot to compare it with?

the before

  • “weight = 84.9Kg
  • Body circumference at just below belly button = 94Cm
  • Body circumference at top of the hips = 90Cm

What will it actually involve?

In short, I anticipate my average day will go something like this:

  • 6:30: wake up
  • 7am: meal replacement shake
  • 10am: meal of protein and vegetables
  • 1pm meal of protein and carbs
  • 2pm: 1 hour gym session
  • 4pm: meal replacement shake
  • 7pm meal of protein and vegetables
  • 11pm: bedtime.

On weekends I may drop a meal or 2 based on how active I am … or not!

Oh, and on 1 day during the week, I have chosen Wednesday’s, I fast. I pretty well eat nothing accept the special cleanse powder that provides the body and brain with the nutriance it needs to function. Water is of course OK. In fact, it is esential!

I will not train on Wednesday’s but may do some light cardio and take a quick sauna. … hmmm, do you ‘take’ a sauna, or maybe ‘have’ one?! Anyway, whatever it is, I will spend about 15 minutes in a sauna.

And that, as they say, is that.

Meanwhile, I am looking forward to a couple of tasty craft beers and probably some pizza over the weekend before it all begins on Monday!

The Ultimate Guide to Sit Ups

A sit up is one of the most well-known and common bodyweight exercises. It is used to build strength in your abdominal muscles (often referred to as your core muscles). And having a strong core is very important for keeping the proper posture and technique in pretty well every other exercise.

Oh, and we can’t forget the endless search for the ‘six pack’!

This detailed article is the ultimate guide for beginners, regular gym goers and even personal trainers and coaches. It walks you through what a sit up is, what equipment you need, what muscles it helps develop, proper technique, a guide to the weight to use, tips for success, variations and a description about what could go wrong and how to minimise the chance of injury.

What are you waiting for. Here it is … Your Ultimate Guide to the Sit Up!

Your Number One Guide to Deadlifts

The deadlift is the number one total body exercise out there. The deadlift will challenge every single muscle in your body … even your eye lids! But only of course if you do it heavy enough!

This detailed article is the ultimate guide for beginners, regular gym goers and even personal trainers and coaches. It walks you through what a deadlift is, what equipment you need, what muscles it helps develop, proper technique, a guide to the weight to use, tips for success, variations and a description about what could go wrong and how to minimise the chance of injury.

What are you waiting for. Here it is … Your Number One Guide to the Mighty Deadlift!

Power guide to weighted squats!

A squat is one of the most well-known and common bodyweight exercises. It is used to build endurance and muscle tone, mainly in the upper legs and glutes. But throw some serious weight onto the bar and you now have an exercise that works the whole body!

This detailed article is the ultimate guide for beginners, regular gym goers and even personal trainers and coaches. It walks you through what a weighted back squat is, what equipment you need, what muscles it helps develop, proper technique, a guide to the weight to use, tips for success, variations and a description about what could go wrong and how to minimise the chance of injury.

What are you waiting for. Here it is … Your Power Guide to the ‘High Bar’ Squat!

Your complete guide to bodyweight squats

A squat is one of the most well-known and common bodyweight exercises. It is used to build endurance and muscle tone, mainly in the upper legs and glutes.

This detailed article is the ultimate guide for beginners, regular gym goers and even personal trainers and coaches. It walks you through what a bodyweight squat is, what equipment you need, what muscles it helps develop, proper technique, a guide to the weight to use, tips for success, variations and a description about what could go wrong and how to minimise the chance of injury.

What are you waiting for. Here it is … Your Complete Guide to Bodyweight Squat!

The complete guide to bench press

Here is your ultimate guide to bench press!

When people think of lifting weights, one of the first exercises to pop into their head will be bench press. And when people who lift weights get a talking, one of the most common questions will be “How much can you bench?”.

This detailed article is the ultimate guide for beginners, regular gym goers and even personal trainers and coaches. It walks you through what a bench press is, what equipment you need, what muscles it helps develop, proper technique, a guide to the weight to use, tips for success, variations and a description about what could go wrong and how to minimise the chance of injury.

Here it is … Your Ultimate Guide to Bench Press!

All you need to know about chin ups … and more!

Here is your go to guide to chin ups!

A chin up is one of the most well known exercises right up there with push ups and sit ups. But do you really know how to do a chin up properly?

This detailed article is the ultimate guide for beginners, regular gym goers and even personal trainers and coaches. It walks you through what a chin up is, what equipment you need, what muscles it helps develop, proper technique, a guide to the weight to use, tips for success, variations and a description about what could go wrong and how to minimise the chance of injury.

Here it is … Your Complete Guide to Chin Ups

40th birthday 40 by 40 epic exercise Marathon

With the year 2014 comes my 40th birthday. And what better way to celebrate than with a 40-themed challenge.

In 40 weeks’ time, on Thursday 27 November 2014, I will be doing 40 repetitions of 40 exercises to raise $40,000 for charity.

That’s an epic 1600 rep Marathon!!

Madness? Dirk Venter thinks so and he’s my trainer!

I will be able to tell you more about the charity I have chosen shortly, but for now … read on to find out which exercises I am planning to do and to let me know what you think.

Tough Mudder Day Episode 3 – Time to dig deep and finish this thing!

Firstly, I really want to say thank you again to you for your interest, support and encouragement as I trained for, participated in and eventually completed Tough Mudder – becoming the first blind person in the world to do so. I hope that you all felt a part of this world 1st achievement!

This achievement would never have been possible though without the rest of the Almost Fit team – Dirk Venter, Michael Meredith, Paul McGee and Glen Wellham and the support of my wife and family!

read on to learn about how I completed the remaining 12 obstacles and battled major leg cramps to finally cross the finish line

Tough Mudder Day Episode 2 – My life is mud

Episode 1 of my Tough Mudder Day was a cliff hanger! Well, maybe not so much a cliff hanger as a moderate hill of anticipation.

Had I really just completed the Electric Eel without a watery buzzy jolt of electricity?

Yes, it seems that I had. Thank goodness for that, although I was still very worried about Electroshock Therapy, which I knew was still to come and which was even worse than I was anticipating! But more about voluntarily walking into a curtain of live electrical wires later …

Read on to learn about how I tackled the obstacles known as kiss of mud, glory blades, trench warfare, cliff hanger and waterlogged, and how my legs started to fail me

4 Minutes of TV fame – guess that leaves me with 11 more to go?!

What I wasn’t really allowed to tell you during the weeks leading up to Tough Mudder Sydney is that the Channel Seven Today Tonight team, lead by Bryan Seymour, were interested in my Tough Mudder mission.

The crew were definitely planning on filming the Tough Mudder day itself, but also spent time in the lead up grabbing footage of me training, running and of course interacting with my beautiful family.

All up I’d say they would have ended up with around 10 hours of footage, including a bunch from a GoPro camera strapped to Dirk Venter’s chest. Well, at least it was attached most of the time!

I take my hat off to Bryan and his team who somehow turned all the footage, including a 10 minute interview with Renee and I, into a compelling four minute TV story . I now have a new insight about, and respect for, this form of journalism and story telling!

If you missed it, you can view it online here

Tough Mudder Day – Episode 1 – Let’s get tough and do this thing

Sorry that I have been silent of late. I am a lawyer by day, and nights too come to think of it, specialising in not-for-profit and charity law. Work has been pretty busy in the Tough Mudder aftermath.

I have though, as promised, written the first instalment of my experience of Tough Mudder.

read on to learn about the morning preparations, getting to the Eastern Creek venue, registering and all that stuff, the buz, excitement, atmosphere and hype, the start, obstacle 1 – Bale Bonds and obstical 2 – the dreaded Electric Eal

My first audio post – a radio interview on 5RPH

On Wednesday 16 October 2013, I had the pleasure of being interviewed by Peter Greco for the 5RPH (1197AM) Vision Extra segment.

With Peter’s questions and prompting, we explore what Tough Mudder is, a little about my preparation, some of the more difficult obstacles such as the skateboard halfpipe and the infamous Electroshock Therapy and learn a little more about my life mottos “give it a go” and “just keep at it“.

Feel free to listen or download at your leisure.

We did it! Team Almost Fit completes all of Tough Mudder Sydney – 12 October 2013

After 4 hours and 19 minutes of hay bales, iced water, mud walls, underground trenches, electric shock therapy, monkey bars, a half pipe, rocky trails, 10km of major leg cramps and the ingestion of more mud than a childhood worth of mud pies, we completed Tough Mudder Sydney!

A massive thanks to the Almost Fit team of (in no particular order) Dirk Venter, Michael Meredith, Paul McGee and Glen Wellham for being part of the team that helped me become the first blind person in the world to finish Tough Mudder. And I can also report that we completed every single obstacle!

Thanks to you, too, for your encouragement and support. It really means a lot to me and certainly helped me push on when the going got … well … tough!

I will report more in the coming days.

I will also be putting up some more photos shortly, but in the meantime you can head on over to the Blind Power Facebook page to view a small sample of photos over there.

Epsom Salts, now that’s living dangerously

Darren Fittler holding an Epsom Salts box wearing a Danger Mouse shirt

With two sleeps until Tough Mudder, it’s into the bath with some epsom salts for me! Well, after some foam rolling, that is. Now that’s living dangerously! Speaking of which, anyone recognise our little friend on my shirt?

I thought you might be interested to know how my BioSignature testing went this week. In short, BioSignature testing involves using callipers to measure the amount of body fat from certain points around the body to help assess hormone levels and to help inform a course of action to improve health, fitness and well-being. Read more about BioSignature Modulation

But before I get to the results, I thought I’d also let you know read on to learn about my diet over the last couple of weeks and the results of my BioSignature testing

World First Blind Tough Mudder

The five members of the Almost Fit team

On 12 October 2013, Darren Fittler, a blind man from Sydney Australia, will be participating in Tough Mudder. If he completes the course, Tough Mudder has confirmed that he will be the first blind person in the world to do so.
read this post for the full article about Darren’s opportunity to be the ffirst blind person in the world to complete Tough Mudder

2Day FM and a challenge to Hamish Blake

The Almost Fit team and I got a tiny bit of radio exposure today. At about 9:10 this morning, I had a minute or so on 2Day FM’s Kyle and Jackie O show talking about my Tough Mudder plans. I learnt that Hamish Blake, a well known Australian media personality who also has a show on 2Day FM, is participating in Tough Mudder as well.

I couldn’t help myself. I had to throw out the challenge. So, if he is game, Hamish has now been invited to join me on an obstacle of his choice – blindfolded! Heck, I’ll even wear a blindfold, too, if that makes him feel better!

10% motivation and 90% routine – that’s all there is to it

In my experience, getting fit is about 90% routine and only 10% motivation.
And 90% of motivation is about setting realistic goals with the rest being a mixture of willpower and encouragement from others.

One of my recent goals is to complete Tough Mudder and this has definitely motivated me to train more, to run more and to eat better. Except for that little trip to the wine country perhaps!

If you are thinking about getting fitter, then read more about getting motivated

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