Tag Archives: outdoor training

When You go down to the….

Bushy Park on a Saturday morning, you’re sure for a big surprise!!

This weeks “Saturday Session” was in Bushy Park, a place where I’ve often been to do my own conditioning work, but never on a Saturday morning. Boy was I missing out!

The park was heaving.

There were:
A Running Club
A Bootcamp

A Football Team

and a huge amount of Dog Walkers.

And I have to say, with the exception of the dog walkers, everyone was, well, jogging.

What’s wrong with that?, you may ask…
And my answer would be, nothing at all. Unless, you’re training for fat loss or any sport other than distance running.

I could go into what each group was doing, or should have been doing, but that would be unfair. They were all out getting exercise and fresh air, and fair play to them.
The running group would most likely be the only group to achieve their goals (better running times), the rest, well, keep trying.

I was there for my Saturday Session. This is for me a deload, no pressures of teaching and instructing, no heavy weights to lift, or bags to hit, just me, my body, the fresh air and maybe a bit of your company.
Today I was joined by a long time client of mine, who also helps out with some of the boring paperwork jobs at Wild Geese, Nicola.

So after watching the “Bootcampers” scurry about like a herd of sheep, admired the work ethic of some of the runners and spoke to a few of the Dogs, we got to work.

We started at the bottom of the hill, looking up at the kids playground, a distance of maybe 25-30 meters, of wet grass and mud. Sweeet..

I set my countdown timer for 15 minutes, we then knocked out as many rounds as possible of the following workout:

1. Single Leg Deadlift (or Airborne Lunge) x 5 L/R

2. Sprint to the top of the hill

3. Press up, any variation x 10
(learn more about these exercises by clicking here)
Jog down and repeat until the buzzer goes.

Short, brutal and effective. We both had shaky legs and were gasping for air at the finish.

Too warm down we wandered into the wooded area and practiced a little Chi Gung. Nicola is a keen student of Tai Chi and I believe that Chi gung is one of the fastest ways to recover after a hard session. My legs were feeling fresh again and I felt energised and ready for anything.

If you wish to join the fun next Saturday, make sure to check in on my Twitter and Facebook pages for updates.

Till then, keep working hard


This week’s Saturday Session

Hello again, it seems to have been a while since my last entry here….

While I may have been a bit quiet updating the blog, believe me I’ve not been sitting idle.

I have officially started my own training program for the next few weeks, I ‘ll have a couple of videos up for your enjoyment shortly. Needless to say I’m keeping to my usual simple but effective formula.
Plus we are making good progress on the redecoration of our Dublin City Centre headquarters.

In the very near future we aim to be able to offer full treatment services including Oseopathy and maybe a couple of others. Keep an eye open right here for further updates on that.

The Lunchtime Kettlebell sessions seem to be gather a good bit of momentum, at the current take up rate I may have to cap them. Wild Geese is exclusive, we don’t want hundreds of people mindlessly going through the motions, you’ll find that at every commercial gym everywhere.

Down at Wild Geese central we only take the people that are genuinely prepared to put the work in, and I’m on hand to make sure that they do.

Right I’ve gotta run as my kettlebell lifting warriors are starting to drift in the door, all smiles and enthusiasm….so far…….

Now before I go, this weeks Saturday Session will take place in Bushy Park, Terenure.
If you wish to attend, simply turn up at the kids playground for 11am.
As I say, this is my training, you are invited to join me, do not expect a “Bootcamp” thing. I take no responsibility for attendee’s, and why should I, you’re all adults…

Better not keep the gang waiting, they get impatient.



Bring the Fun Back To Fitness

Look around the gym, how many people are smiling?
How many are getting results?
Here’s an alternative to the hamster wheel workouts we’re all getting bored with.

Gyms have become soulless places. I spent much of 2008 in a couple of gyms belonging to an Irish chain and some of my time in a privately owned “lifters” gym. Guess where I had most fun?
That’s right the lifters gym.
Why, you ask.

The atmosphere in most commercial gyms has gone the way of effective training. The free weight section is small and unkempt, machines take up more floor space than necessary and at least half the floor is made up of Treadmills, Steppers, Stationary bikes, rowing machines and those silly cross trainers.

And then there are the people that use them. IPods on, eyes glued to the many TV screens, these people look like a scene from Orwells classic novel, 1984. I think the contracts these people sign forbid them from any social interaction and frivolry within the confines of the gym.
If anyone smiles or makes eye contact, never mind conversation, they get removed and shot.
Get down to the lifters gym and you’ll see complete strangers looking out for each other, helping and encouraging each other, cracking jokes between sets and generally building camaraderie.

Which gym produces better results?
The modern Orwellian gym 101 or the old school lifters gym?
No question really, thers IS no school like the old school.

Would you be comfortable training near this guy?

Now I have an admission for you, I have never held a commercial gym membership. I prefer to train either at home, outdoors or at Wild Geese HQ. Minimal kit, no IPods, no TV screens. I always get results.

Why? Because making training fun, making it interesting, taking the chore away from it means you’re more likely to stick to it, to work hard and to make progress. And what’s the point of paying some commercial giant a small fortune if you aint going to get results. Many of you reading this may have just spent up on a new membership, if so, sit and rethink. Would you be better in a smaller place, a little of the beaten track, less shiny but with a smell of sweat and an atmosphere of determination, grit and camaraderie?
The chances are you would, plus you’d save a few quid and have more fun.
Failing that do what I do. Buy a kettlebell or two, make yourself a sandbag and learn some bodyweight drills. You may now train in your front room, back garden, the beach, the park or one of my favourites, the kid’s jungle gym.

Yes I said it, I go to kid’s playgrounds and workout. Obviously not when it’s full of kids. Sometime I take the kettlebell or sandbag, otherwise I just use bodyweight. Every time I go the workout is different, sometimes it’s simple circuit of squats, press-ups (do these with your feet elevated on the slide) and pull ups from the monkey bars. Other times are super sets of Pull ups, sandbag clean & press or dips, hanging leg raise, pistol squats.
I may use the swing set for jackknife or pike push-ups. The swing set provides a thick bar for really challenging pull ups.

The slide is for incline or decline push ups. The monkey bars are for pull ups, chin ups and all kinds of hanging abdominal work. The hopscotch gives you agility work, the fireman’s pole can be a tough no feet hand over hand climb, the bridges provide bodyweight rows and dips, benches can be jumped onto, imagination is your only limitation.
And all that is without taking any kit with you. Add sandbags and kettlebells to get really brutal.
Training outdoors, even here in rainy Ireland, is fun, the fresh air is great for you, you’re not sucking in recycled air conditioned muck and there’s never some skinny-fat twerp with an ego bigger than his biceps getting in your way.
Give it a go, bring the fun back. Even better again, get some mates together and compete a little.

Here’s an outdoor partner workout:
You need a pull up station and some markers, these may be bags, jumpers or other bits of playground kit.
Assign each marker an exercise, for example:
  • Monkey Bars – Pull ups
  • Slide – Push up
  • Swing – Jackknifes (for the abs)
  • Bench – Bodyweight squats
Here’s how it works:
  1. Partner A is on the pull ups, as soon as he starts his set partner B sprints to the first station, e.g. the slide and does 10 pushups.
  2. B then sprints back to A where they swop over and A runs to the slide. When A returns to the pull-up station, B runs to station 2, the swing. After his set of Jack knifes he returns to the pull up so A can sprint to the swing.
  3. The pull up guy must do as many as he can until the other guy runs to his station, does his set and runs back.
The obvious incentive here is for you to be as quick as possible. If B dawdles while A does pull ups, I’d say A will take his sweet time to punish B with a whole heap of pulls!!
That’s only an idea. Get out there and do something different, just enjoy it!
www.wildgeesema.com / noequipment.blogspot.com
+353 087 672 6090
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Get out of the Gym and Become a Warrior

Training outdoors, or at home beats the commercial gym any day of the week.
You’ve no ques, no waiting for kit, no crowds of people, no idle chit chat, no artificial fluorescent lights and no air conditioning.

All day most of us a cooped up in and artificial environment with air conditioners sucking moisture from our lungs and fluorescent tubes giving us headaches.
We’re surrounded by people talking, chatting, wasting time, moaning and complaining, sucking away at our energy.
Is it any wonder that at the end of a long day driving a mouse around a computer screen we’re all exhausted?

This I why the No Equipment, No Excuses lifestyle is more relevant now than ever before.
We have more choice now than any other generation in the history of man. But where is it getting us?
Technology has given us ergonomically designed machines in which to train our bodies, yet we are fatter with poorer posture and more bad backs than ever before. Something is just not right.

We need to take a step back. To a time where we had to use our bodies to survive. We need to start doing the moves that our ancestors would use in their daily battle to make it through the day.
They had no fancy kit and they certainly had no excuses!

Getting outside in the fresh air either before or after a day in the office can have a massive effect on your health and well being.
Fresh air, sunlight, nature. These are all things the body needs. Get into your garden or the local park and get busy.
You can get a complete session done in as little as 10 Min’s, and rarely is their need to go longer than 45 Min’s, and believe me, once you get cracking, you won’t notice the wind or the rain!!

You’ll feel like a warrior of old. You’ll be mentally and physically refreshed, ready for anything.


Dave Hedges
Author: No Equipment, No Excuses – Bodyweight training for the Home, Office or on the Road
+353 87 672 6090
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