How to lift weights properly

At any gym in Dunedin FL you will see people wasting their time because they don’t know how to lift weights properly.

Instead of lifting the weight, they throw it.  Instead of lowering the weight slowly, under control, they let it drop.  Instead of using the heaviest weight they can with super strict form, they use too much weight and cheat to move it.

And the biggest sin of all – when the reps start to get hard, and their muscles start to burn, they quit – instead of training to failure.

And after a few months of slavishly dragging themselves to the gym, performing set after unproductive set, they wonder why they aren’t seeing any changes.

But your body doesn’t care what you look like.  It doesn’t care whether you feel sexy and self-confident or not. Your body only cares about one thing, and that one thing is your survival.

Your body will always strive to maintain your physiological status quo, known in scientific terms as homeostasis.  Unless it perceives something as a threat to your survival, it has no reason to expend precious energy altering that status quo.

For example, if you sit in front of a 60 watt light bulb, there is no threat to your survival, so no physical changes are required.  However, if you go out in the hot Florida sun in August, there is a threat to your survival, because exposure to those ultraviolet rays could be life threatening.  So in response, your body produces a sun tan to protect you.

The same principle hold true in the realm of exercise.  If you do something that you are already capable of doing, even though it is momentarily uncomfortable, there is no threat to your survival, so no changes will occur.  But if you regularly attempt the momentarily impossible, your body will respond by producing larger, stronger, more shapely muscles, because over exposure to that type of stress is perceived as a threat to your survival.

Here’s a short video to illustrate why you need to know how to lift weights properly:

At Rock Solid Fitness our clients get immediate, dramatic and continuous results because we have taught them how to get the most out of each set they do. Come in and try it yourself for free by clicking HERE.

“Help! My Dunedin Gym Workout Made Me Sore!”

Sometimes new clients tell us “I loved my first workout at your Dunedin Gym, but I am SO SORE! What can I do?”

Starting a workout program at your Dunedin gym can be challenging. Making the time to exercise, following instructions from your Fitness Coach, and setting goals are hard enough, but now you have the muscle soreness that comes with adapting to that regimen.  It can all be a little overwelming.

After participating in some kind of strenuous physical activity, particularly something new to your body, it is common to experience muscle soreness, according to the experts.  “Muscles go through quite a bit of physical stress when we exercise,” says Rick Sharp, professor of exercise physiology at Iowa State University in Ames.  “Mild soreness is just a natural outcome of any kind of physical activity,” he says. “And it is most prevalent in beginning stages of a program.”

Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness

Exercise physiologists refer to the gradually increasing discomfort that occurs between 24 and 48 hours after activity as delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS), and it is perfectly normal.

“Delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) is a common result of physical activity that stresses the muscle tissue beyond what it is accustomed to,” says David O. Draper, professor and director of the graduate program in sports medicine/athletic training at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah.

To be more specific, delayed onset muscle soreness occurs when the muscle is performing an eccentric, or lengthening contraction, also called the “negative” portion of the repetition.  If you are doing bicep curls, for example, when you bend your elbow and lift the weight to your shoulders, that is the “positive” portion of the repetition.  When you lower the weight to return it to the starting position, that is the “negative” portion of the repetition, and that is the only part that makes you sore.

But the Negative is also the most productive portion of the repetition in terms of increasing your muscular size and strength, so don’t even think about trying to avoid it by only doing the lifting part :).

Ease Those Aching Muscles

So what can you do to alleviate the pain?  Patty breaks down how to alleviate the muscle soreness you got from your last Dunedin gym workout:

“Is There A Fat Loss Meal Plan in Clearwater That’s Simple And Effective?”

With swimsuit season fast approaching, many people are looking to lose some fat and get a little more “buffed” in anticipation.  Of course, you don’t have to wait for a beach vacation to drop some unwanted fat and get into better physical condition – any time is a great time for that :).  The problem, of course, is trying to figure out the best way to implement these goals. Nobody wants to put in the effort to try to lose fat and get in better shape, only to end up seeing poor-or even no-results.  Most people want to start their program with some confidence that they are on a sound, simple plan, that they will be able to stick with, that will quickly give them the results they desire.

This leaves many people asking:

“Is there a fat loss meal plan in Clearwater that’s simple and effective?”

In order to be able to answer this question, we must first know what factors must be present in such a program to give us the results we are seeking.  And it ll boils down to just a couple of fundamental components that, if present in your program, will yield excellent results; but if absent, all of your efforts will be wasted, no matter how hard you “try”.

Fundamental #1: Muscles are the calorie-burning engines of the body.

Your muscles are your most metabolically expensive tissue.  Muscles require a lot of calories every day to perform their function of producing movement.  The more muscle you have on your body, the more calories your body will require to feed those muscles-24 hours a day, 7 days a week, whether you work out that day or not.  Therefore, high intensity, muscle growth stimulating exercise, in the for of resistance training, is an absolute must for fat loss.  If you just diet without strength training, or just diet and do cardio, you may lose weight, but you will not lose just fat and get leaner, you will most likely lose a lot of muscle, too-which means you will be wasting your time.

Fundamental #2: You can’t out-exercise a bad diet.

If your nutrition program isn’t just right (for you, as an individual), you can be on the most scientifically advanced exercise program in the world, and you will still get poor results.  If you should be eating 2,350 calories a day to look the way you want to look, and you are regularly consuming 3,500 calories a day, you can forget it.

So how do you figure out what a “Good Diet” is?  I’m glad you asked…..

Fundamental #3: Your fat loss meal plan should include the “4 S-Words”.

To lose fat successfully, and keep it off long term, make sure these 4 “S words” are part of your fat loss meal plan:

Simple:  A complicated, hard to follow program is usually counter-productive, and is also unnecessary.  A well-balanced diet, consisting of readily available foods you can get at your local supermarket, will provide outstanding results, provided you are eating the correct number of calories and macro-nutrients for you individually.

Sustainable:  Any fat loss meal plan that forces you to eat foods you don’t like will not be sustainable.  You can only choke down things you can’t stand for so long before you start to crave the things you really like.  This will tempt you to binge on those “forbidden foods”, sabotaging your efforts and causing discouragement.  Also, plans that include exotic supplements or meal substitutes will usually not stand the test of time.

Satisfying:  You can eat foods you like as long as you are sensible about it.  Thinking you need to completely deprive yourself of things you like to eat is not only incorrect, but in addition who would want to live like that?  Eating is one of life’s simple pleasures, and you can still have satisfying dining experiences and be reasonably lean and fit.

Specific:  Not only do we all have unique personalities, we are all also unique when it comes to calorie requirements.  “One size fits all” fat loss meal plans are a recipe for disaster.  Each individual needs a plan tailored to their unique set of physiological circumstances, such as their basal metabolic rate (BMR), medical history, current condition, age, etc.

“Ok, so now I know what to what a good fat loss plan plan looks like – but where do I find such a plan?”

The Rock Solid Fitness Accelerated Fat Loss 101 program includes our personalized meal planning system to fit your needs, 12 weekly meetings to teach you healthy habits, nutrition education to teach you how your body works, and an InBody 570 body scan before and after the course to determine your BMR, establish realistic personal goals, and see exactly how much fat you have lost. (Click here for more details)

 So there you have it – there really is a simple and effective fat loss meal plan, Clearwater!

Check out this cool video for more info:



“Help! I Need A Personal Trainer”

Right now, somebody is saying to themselves “Help! I need a personal trainer” in Dunedin FL.

And somebody else is saying, “I don’t need a personal trainer.  I can workout just fine on my own”.

So who’s right?  Sure, people who have never exercised before can benefit from a good personal trainer, we can all agree on that.  But what about somebody who already has a bunch of workout experience – is it worth it for them to hire a personal Fitness Coach?

Yes, it is.  And here’s why: 

Top 3 Reasons why you and I need a Personal Trainer:

1. Professional Accountability.

If you have an appointment set with your personal trainer, and you have already paid for the session, you are far less likely to skip that workout.  And once you do show up, you’re not going to be able to talk yourself out of anything.  No more blowing off legs.  No more skipping that last abdominal exercise.  No more starting with bench press every single workout.  Your trainer will hold you accouuntable and make sure you get the results you are seeking by doing what you need to do, not just what you feel like doing.

2. Supervision.

Studies consistently show that just having someone near you watching you exercise causes you to work harder, even if they don’t say a word.  And of course, any good Personal Trainer is going to say a lot of words to you, both coaching your exercise form and encouraging you to put in a maximum effort.  Also, having a second set of eyes watching your technique is a great way to prevent cheating, and more importantly to maintain safety.

3. Variety.

There are certain techniques that can add variety and increase the intensity of your workout that you simply cannot perform on your own (as seen in the video below).  Adding variety prevents boredom, keeps your motivation up, and forces adaptation, which translates into better results.  And since intensity is the critical factor determining the effectiveness of your workout program, utilizing trainer-assisted techniques will make your workouts infinitely more productive.

So no matter what your experience level, having a good Personal Trainer at your side is the way to go!  Come in to Rock Solid Fitness today and let us help you!


“Are all Personal Training Gyms near me the same?”

Have you been asking yourself:

“Are all the personal training gyms near me the same? I wonder what makes them different, and which one would be the best for me…”

A lot of our current clients were asking themselves the same questions.  There are many different types of personal training gyms near me and you nowadays, and the search for the right fit can get confusing.

Of course there are some basic parameters that are pretty universal.

For example, everybody wants a trainer who knows what they are doing, so education and experience are important.

Next, you have to be able to get to the gym when you’re supposed to for your workouts; if it’s too inconvenient to schedule a workout at a time that works for you, then it doesn’t matter how great that personal training gym near me or you is, we probably won’t stick with it.

And of course the program has to be productive.  You want results, and if you’re like most people, the faster the better.  Now, results means different things to different people, depending on their situation.  Some want to lose weight, some want to get stronger, some want to get rid of aches and pains, increase their energy and stamina, or train for an athletic event.  You need to know that your personal training gym can help you accomplish your personal goals.

All of our current clients have asked themselves some combination of these questions before signing up with us.

Then some how, some way, they found us, and came in for a Free Introductory Workout.  And then they found out some of the ways Rock Solid Fitness addresses those areas.

For starters, all of our Fitness Coaches have college degrees in a related field, and go through a rigorous 3 month internship program with us to insure they are up to Rock Solid Fitness standards.

And since our program involves only 2 brief (but intense!) workouts per week, it is easier for our clients to get in for their workouts.  Our unique flexible training scheduling system also allows them to come in when they are available, rather than being at the mercy of their trainer’s schedule.  All of our Coaches provide the same workout experience, so our clients can schedule a workout any time we’re open and get the same great workout experience.

And as far as achieving each client’s individual fitness goals – well, why I don’t I let THEM tell you about that…..



Do diets work? Join our Accelerated Fat Loss Program to learn what does work! – Starts Monday, February 13th – Limited space available.


Meet Mr. Joe. Joe is 42, six feet tall, 200 pounds, 24% body fat, and eats about 3,000 calories per day through a small breakfast, big lunch and a big dinner.

He’s nervous about his high school reunion coming up in 10 weeks because he’s 30 pounds heavier than he was when he graduated. He would love to get back down to 170 before he sees all of his old classmates, so he goes to his local gym.

“Hello sir, what can we do for you?”

“I want to lose thirty pounds in ten weeks.”

“We can definitely help you do that. How many calories are you eating per day?”

“About 3,000.”

“Great, you need to cut that down to 2,000 calories. That will starve the fat and help you lose weight.”

Since Joe really wants to lose weight he does exactly what they tell him to and only eats 2,000 calories per day. Two weeks later he’s a bit sluggish and pretty hungry, but what do you know, he’s lost 10 pounds! He’s excited about the results so he keeps on going. However, three weeks later he’s still at 190, so he goes back to the gym.

“Hey guys, the diet you put me on worked and I lost ten pounds! But I’m stuck now, what do I do?”

“Don’t worry Joe; we have this plateau buster program that will get you where you need to be. You’re eating too much; you have to eat 1,500 calories per day now.”

So Joe goes home and for the last five weeks before his reunion eats 1,500 calories per day. What happened? Well, he reached his goal and got down to 170, but he had to pay a price. His body fat percentage dropped only 2%, meaning he lost just 10 pounds of fat and 20 pounds of muscle. He’s also craving sugars and fats, has headaches, and feels sluggish and tired. There’s no way Joe can keep this diet up forever so after the reunion he goes back to eating 2,000 calories (still 1,000 less than the 3,000 he was originally eating).

A year later Joe’s body has changed again. He’s now 203 pounds (3 pounds heavier), 32% body fat (even farther out of the healthy range which is 10-20%), but still eats just 2,000 calories. How did this happen?

For one, you exactly can’t starve fat. Fat is stored energy so when Joe started eating less (giving his body less energy), why would it get rid of the stored energy? His body went in to starvation mode and wanted to keep as much fat as possible in case there was even less food available in the future. This is an evolutionary adaptation from the caveman days where McDonalds wasn’t always down the street. His body also started burning muscle because he needed more energy, and also muscle requires a lot of calories to maintain. Then, when he went from eating 1,500 calories to 2,000 calories, his metabolism was so low (since he had lost 20 pounds of calorie burning muscle) that he easily gained more weight, mostly in the form of fat.

So back to our question: do diets work?

As Joe discovered, the answer is a Big Fat NO!

So how do you keep this from happening to you?

  1. Don’t go on crash diets. They may work for a little, but in the end you will set yourself up for failure in the future.
  2. Strength train. Building muscle will keep your metabolism high and turn your body into an efficient calorie burning machine.
  3. Eat the right amounts of calories. Eating too little will cause your body to store fat and burn muscle; eating too much will cause you body to store fat. Remember, your body is an efficient fat storing machine because in the caveman days it was advantageous to store as much energy (fat) as possible.

Do you want to figure out how many calories you need? Do you need a little extra motivation and accountability? Sign up for Accelerated Fat Loss 101! This is our 8 week course where we will teach you exactly what you need to know to lose fat, and then help motivate you and hold you accountable as we all take those steps together. The deadline to sign up is Thursday, February 9th and seating is limited so sign up today! Give us a call at 727-2800-1800 to reserve your spot.

Rock Solid Fitness Dunedin Grand Opening Party and Charity Auction

Mark Your Calendar for the

Rock Solid Fitness Dunedin

Grand Opening Party and Charity Auction

December 2nd, 2016, 4 to 8 PM

2110 Main Street, Dunedin FL 34698


We can’t wait for our Grand Opening celebration on December 2nd!!! 

Come celebrate with us and check out our new bigger, better newly remodeled facility, with new equipment too!

Here are some of the fun activities that will be going on:

Food and refreshments!

Workout demonstrations with our Fitness Coaches!

Door Prizes!

Grand Prize – overnight stay in the new Fenway Hotel, opening in 2017!

And of course –

Our now-famous Train-the-Trainer Charity Auction

Bid on the opportunity to train your favorite Fitness Coach, and give them a taste of their own medicine! All money raised will be donated to the following charities:

  • Random Acts of Flowers Tampa Bay – Random Acts of Flowers improves the emotional health and well-being of individuals in health care facilities by delivering recycled flowers, encouragement and personal moments of kindness.
  • Clothes to Kids – Our mission is to provide new and quality used clothing to low-income or in-crisis school age children in Pinellas County, free of charge.
  • Dunedin Cares Food Pantry – Dunedin Cares collects and distributes non-perishable food items to Dunedin residents that need that extra help during turbulent times.

Check out these scenes from past “Train the Trainer” Auctions

Rock Solid Fitness Drew Carpenter

Drew getting auctioned off to a crowd of frenzied bidders

Even Patty got auctioned off! She brought the big bucks.....

Even Patty got auctioned off! She brought the big bucks…..

 And check out Lisa destroying Drew on the leg press after “winning” him in the Charity Auction!

We look forward to seeing you December 2nd!!!

Rock Solid Fitness Dunedin Move Part 5: The Date Is Set!

The Rock Solid Fitness Dunedin Move now has a date! We will be moving to 2110 Main Street in Dunedin on November 14, 2016.

And don’t forget to mark your calendar for our Grand Opening Party on Friday, December 2nd.  We will have food, give-aways, prizes, workout demonstrations on our new equipment, and much, much more!

Can’t wait to see you then!

Check out the latest up-to-the minute progress on the construction at the new home of Rock Solid Fitness Dunedin at 2110 Main Street Dunedin

The Truth About The “Fat Burning Zone”

For a long time, many so-called fitness experts have been advising people to exercise in their “fat-burning” heart rate zone during cardio workouts. By fat-burning zone, they mean exercising at a low level of intensity, as measured by heart rate, because doing so causes the body to utilize a higher percentage of fat as fuel than high intensity cardio. Certainly, if you are only interested in losing fat, as opposed to sports conditioning, this would be the way to go, right?


The truth is, things like the “Fat Burning Zone” are fancy-sounding ways to justify not working out hard.  As my good friend Luke Carlson of Discover Strength points out, it is a technique people use to “engineer the hard work out of the workout”.

Although it is true that a low intensity routine will utilize a higher percentage of fat as fuel, you will burn more fat on a higher intensity program, which I will explain by sharing with you the results of a 1994 study which appeared in Fitness Management magazine (Pocari, 1994). Before we get to that, let me explain what METS are for those who don’t know.

METS stands for metabolic equivalent. METS are frequently used to measure the intensity and energy requirements of an activity. One MET is equal to the energy expenditure needed for the uptake of 3.5 ml of oxygen per kilogram of body weight per minute at rest. Thus, an activity that requires an oxygen consumption of 35 ml/kg/min would be identified as a 10 MET activity. Some examples of MET values for common activities are as follows:
1 MET- sitting at rest
2-3 METS- walking at 2 MPH
4-5 METS- walking at 3.5 MPH, badminton, softball
7-8 METS- basketball, cycling at 12 MPH, mountain climbing
10+ METS- soccer, wrestling, sprinting

Now, back to the 1994 study on fat burning. The study consisted of 2 groups, a low-intensity group and a high-intensity group. Each group performed an aerobic workout on a treadmill for 30 minutes while having their metabolism monitored (breathing into a tube, like on those Gatorade commercials). The low intensity group walked on the treadmill at a speed of 3.8 MPH (the “fat burning” zone), while the high intensity group ran on the treadmill at a speed of 6.5 MPH. The results were as follows:

Group:                                   low intensity        high intensity

Time:                                     30 minutes           30 minutes

Total calories burned:                  240                       450

% of Carbohydrate as fuel:    60% (144 cal.)       75% (342 cal.)

% of Fat as fuel:                    40% (96 cal.)         25% (108 cal.)

Observe that the trainees in the high intensity group burned almost twice as many total calories as those in the low intensity group in the same amount of time. Total calories is the number one measurement for weight loss; thus, the low intensity group had an inferior workout by that standard. Also note that although it is true that the low intensity group burned a higher percentage of fat (40%) than the high intensity group (25%), the calories burned from fat was actually more for the high intensity group (108 vs. 96).

The results of this study demonstrate what anyone with common sense already knows-namely, the harder you work, the more calories and fat you will burn and the better shape you will be in.


High intensity interval training Dunedin


NOT This!

NOT This!

Here’s one last example to bury the “fat burning zone” myth once and for all: This past summer, we all enjoyed watching the 100 meter sprinters in the Brazil Summer Olympics-the fastest human beings in the world. How long did it take these athletes to cover this distance? Somewhere between 9 and 10 seconds, running all out, at 10+++ MET pace. Hardly the “fat burning zone” that is often recommended to us normal humans just trying to lose a few pounds! As you watched these athletes fly, did you see any visible body fat on these people?

I already know the answer: NO. So much for the fat burning zone!

Exciting News!

Rock Solid Fitness will be offering High Intensity Cardio Workouts at our new Dunedin Facility! Visit this site often for the latest news about our move to 2110 Main Street in Dunedin – we will be there in just a few more weeks!