JP Mullowney

The alarm clock rings. “Oh God”, you think, “How can I possibly train this early in the morning? I just know this will be a terrible workout, I’ll be so weak”. Ring any bells? Or perhaps you get home from work and think that after all day you can’t possibly perform to your potential during your evening workout. While either of these scenarios may be far too familiar to you, it’s worth considering the science that has been conducted on circadian rhythms (your body’s natural clock) before you put off that New Year’s resolution for another year.

The Science:

In one of only a handful of studies examining the topic, researchers at the University of Rhode Island examined the influence that time of day at which a workout occurred had on the mental readiness, power, and force output (But not swoliness!?) of college aged men. These poor fellows were strength tested at four different times of day, 4:00 (ROUGH!), 10:00, 16:00, and 22:00. Interestingly enough, there were no differences in force output, power, or mental readiness between any of the test times.

The Take Home Message:

So what does this mean for you? Well if you are only able to exercise during the early morning or later in the evening than this research indicates you should achieve the same results as any other point in the day! While lack of a comfortable time to exercise may be a good excuse for many people, don’t let it be yours! This New Year’s, instead of making another excuse, make a commitment to yourself!

References:

Hatfield, D.L, Nicoll, J.X., Kraemer, W.J. (2016). Effects of circadian rhythm on power, force, and hormonal response in young men. The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 30(3), 725-732.

Prepared for the JKC blog by Coach Thomas.

Photo credit: JP Mullowney

I had spent a fair bit of time in gyms in my teens and twenties but I turned away from the gym to focus on activities that I enjoyed more. What keeps me at JKC is that I do really enjoy it. I always feel that I’ve accomplished something when I leave at the end of my workout. The environment is really positive and focused on challenging yourself whatever your level of comfort and fitness. I’ve also seen results that I’m really happy with; having someone who really knows what they’re talking about to guide your workouts makes them way more effective and focused than just “going to the gym”.

Shortly after I started at JKC, I sustained a fairly major injury that took me off my feet for several months. When I started to get back to activity, it was very difficult. Jon and Thomas worked hard to tailor my workouts to my goals and what I could do. With their help, I’ve been steadily building back strength and function.

I saw an article in Men’s Journal that quoted Jon in about 2018 while traveling and was impressed that someone in St. John’s made that international magazine.  Jon spoke about an exercise called the Farmer’s Walk and I started working that into my routine at the YMCA. I tore that article out of the magazine and kept it, meaning to make contact, but got busy. Then I had lunch with an old friend Bruce Dyke. I hadn’t seen Bruce for a while and I remarked that he looked super healthy and fit. He told me about his, and his son Cas’, experience at JKC and then I remembered the Men’s Journal article! No coincidences!

The experience is unique on many levels – great people, camaraderie, passion, purpose, and dedication. Jon and Thomas are attentive, precise and understanding.  Their teaching has unlocked a new perspective for me with what our bodies are capable of. I still appreciate the YMCA, wonderful place, but I can’t imagine working out without Jon and Thomas now.

I am turning 67 next month and I started my journey with JKC in 2018. Seven years ago I experienced significant foot pain which had a negative impact on my day to day activities. I learned that issues in other parts of the body need to be addressed to achieve a positive result. My doctor (Dr. Jessica Wade) suggested, along with some other therapies, that I could  benefit from the conditioning JKC had to offer. I previously had not trained in any gym. I observed how many gyms operated and had a sense that JKC would be more my style: training in a small group setting, having such personal attention, and a program meeting my specific needs is fantastic! I love the atmosphere at the gym. Everyone is accepted and you feel supported and comfortable.

I had signed up for other gyms in the past and never went or rarely went. Something always got in the way or I was just too tired and lacked motivation to go. This way I’ve made a commitment to Jon or Thomas and I try very hard to keep my sessions once I’ve booked in. JKC is different from other gyms that I’ve tried in the past because no one is there to be “seen”. We are all there to get a good workout in and go on with our lives. And it’s a small gym so you get to know everyone and it’s like a big family. When I joined JKC, I couldn’t do a chin up with an elastic band, but I’ve slowly worked up to 10 free hanging chin ups. That was big because I hate chin ups.

The people and the training set JKC apart from other gyms or programs I’ve tried in the past. Truly Jon and Thomas meet you where are and help you get to where you want to be. There are no expectations and never any judgement. You can go there having the worst day and you always leave feeling better. Truly JKC has given me a level of strength and confidence I would not have had otherwise ❤️.

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