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Kieran's main sport is rugby and so his fitness regime revolves around that. He talks to Sundried about life as a personal trainer.

Please tell us about sporting events you have taken part in or have coming up. 

Since I was 8 I have been playing rugby at the highest level you can. Throughout school I won many regional competitions including the Bristol and Gloucester Junior Cups and went a whole season without being beaten. Since joining my adult club, Barton Hill R.F.C, I have continued this success by winning the Gloucester Vase and progressing to the South West Cup stages as well as a place in the Bristol Combination Cup Semi-final, all this while remaining top of the table.

Tell us about your journey to fitness? Where did it all start?

When I joined Bristol Schools, rugby started to become very serious and a lot of the boys already had years of experience ahead of me when it came to the gym and fitness (I was a prop) and so I asked my dad to get me a gym membership. This is where it all started, with regular members welcoming new people to the gym and offering advice I was hooked to fitness and when my mates joined and I was able to help them, I knew I was going to go into the fitness industry.

What are your training goals now?

My goals are always changing due to position and role changes in rugby. After increasing my weight to 100kg to fulfil a typical crash ball role, I am now back down to 91kg to improve speed, acceleration and endurance and currently run out as inside centre. Until the season finishes my goal will be to ensure the maintenance of my fitness level.

Tell us one unusual fact we wouldn’t know about you:

I am a science teacher in a comprehensive secondary school .

What advice do you wish you'd been given when you first started out?

How important the food you eat is when achieving your goals. Whether it’s increasing, maintaining or decreasing your body weight, no matter how much exercise you do you won’t achieve what you strive for without the hard work in the kitchen.

Do you follow a specific nutrition plan? If so, what/when do you eat?

I stick to high fat, high protein for most meals in smallish portions because of the calories in the fat, however after a workout I go crazy with high amounts of protein and carbs to refuel my glycogen stores for the next workout.

What do you do to keep your clients motivated? Do you have any top tips to keep motivated?

Fun. Fun is key to learning and maintaining anything. I am the strength and conditioning coach for the national swimming junior swimming team that ranges from the ages of 9-17 so keeping the youngest ones focused while completing the work can be challenging, but give them fun things to do and rewards. Similarly my performance squad which consists of the oldest and most experienced club members, I find I have to battle with egos and their current knowledge of fitness, by creating a fun and holistic session in which they have a say in what they do, it keeps them on track and reaching new heights in their sport. 

Talk us through your training regime.

This is always changing and adapting depending on my goals and how much time I have to achieve them. I will usually settle with a 2-3km run which I aim to do as fast as possible so I am not comfortable and always pushing my body, followed by an anaerobic pyramid set starting on 50 reps and working my way down to doing 10 less reps each set until I reach the final set of 10 reps. Throughout this I will increase the weight every set and rest for 2 minutes between finishing and starting a new set.

Immediately I will move onto a small HIIT session to push the endurance of my body again, using 30s on, 30s off for a total of 4 minutes with exercises that target the abs such as burpees and mountain climbers. After this, I will reverse the pyramid set and repeat the HIIT session one last time. I am to do all of this within an hour so my body doesn’t have time to recover and the muscle groups I am focusing on are fully engaged for the whole time.

How do you keep your fitness knowledge up to date?

I recently graduated from Gloucestershire University in 2017 with a BSc (Hons) in Sport and Exercise Science which covered modules from sports Psychology to Nutrition, Biomechanics to Coaching Strategies so I’d like to think my knowledge is up to date however I know how quickly things change with new research so I continuously read new articles and books as well as regularly meet up with and plan new innovative sessions with other fitness instructors and coaches

What are your top 3 trainer tips?

  1. Never rely on scales to show your progress.
  2. Never compare yourself to anyone else in the gym, they will be doing the same.
  3. Always make it fast and fun.

If you could only eat one thing for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Crispy duck. It’s my Achilles heel when it comes to food, I could eat it by the bucket load.

Why work with Sundried?

I have always grown up with a concern for the environment and Sundried’s ethos matches mine, partnered with the great quality of the clothing and continuously growing reputation for their products, I believe Sundried best represents a growing concern and responsibility for it that I share.

Favourite fitness quote:

“Do or do not, there is no try”

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