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Coach Seán Newsletter - October 22

You have a second brain.

Stay with me on this. Especially if you haven't heard much about it before, it is surprisingly true. 

Allow me to explain... after I tell you about someone who would accuse me of having no brain from time to time. That would be my Dad. He's probably right. 

As most of you know, we have been training nearly every Tuesday afternoon for the past 6 months. Before this, my Dad had not trained in YEARS. And we kept things very simple as we recorded the process. Different exercises to help with 'Push' movements, 'Pull' movements as well as from the Hip (think deadlifts and glute raises) and Knee (squats and lunges). The key to it was patience. We have up and down weeks with the transformation but he is moving a lot better now than he has in years (even performing exercises that I did not think we would be doing in such a short space of time). So much so, that when he sees me doing some of the more advanced exercises on my social media, he has the urge to try them. 

So after training last Tuesday, he asked me about an upper body ladder exercise I performed the previous week and gave it a try... 

This ladder drill is GREAT for your core. Keeping your hips low, you will really feel your core muscles work and it is A LOT more effective than doing sit-ups!

Here are 4 other exercises you can try in your next abs workout to truly work on your core muscles:

Plank Circles 
Banded Deadbugs 
Russian Twists
Abs Roller 

The thing is common with these 4 exercises is that it is challenging your core stability. The most obvious example is performing a plank. Once you are able to perform a plank for around 60 seconds. You should be able to attempt the above exercises safely.

Or you could hold a plank for as long as it takes you to finish a Rubix cube.

That requires a lot of brain power

Oh yeah, your second brain...

Science & Fitness:

They say you are what you eat. We know that if we eat processed, greasy food, we can sometimes feel a lot worse after it. Well, it turns out that this is due to our gut and brain being very closely linked. So much, in fact, that people are referring to our gut as our second brain

The food we eat can have a HUGE impact on how we think and how we feel. Our food consumption plays a much more important role than the number on the scales. 

There are studies to suggest that a fat diet (such as the Ketogenic diet) can have tremendous benefits on the link between our gut and brain including increased blood flow, a decrease in weight and lower blood glucose levels. 

Does this mean I am recommending a Keto diet for everyone? Absolutely not. But what I am recommending is that when you are on a particular food plan, even if the main go is to lose weight, take note of HOW YOU FEEL. This is infinitely more important than your actual weight. Different foods can have a different reaction to different people. We're all different when it comes to nutrition so what might work for Jimmy, may not work for you. No matter how adamant they are that you have to do it. 

Speaking of the brain, I am about to switch mine off for the rest of the evening and watch my 49ers play the best team in the league. Which probably means burpees galore for everyone tomorrow but I will be incredibly optimistic until the end...

Thank you for reading this weeks newsletter! If there's anything you would like to read more about each week, shoot me an email on (I can't promise to stop talking about football until February though!)