Why exercise is essential for those over 50

As you know, I am a big believer in the benefits of exercise for those over 50.  And it makes me feel good when others – especially professionals in fields such as sport, longevity and nutrition – feel the same way about it that I do.

So I was pleased when Neil and the guys at Insure4Sport came for a chat and interviewed me on this; well, it is my favourite subject after all!

They published the article, which includes a video interview with Rob Riches – the guy that got me into fitness – as well as me discussing how important this subject is for my age group.  Or ‘essential’, as the title has it.  Take a look at the article on the link below, and once again many thanks to Neil and his team at Insure4Sport.



Welcome to the podcast

I very much enjoyed taking part in my first ever fitness podcast recently.
I discussed how I got into fitness, why it changed my life – and how I’m now helping others to change their lives too. And what started as a doctor’s instruction to down the fat and up the fit became my hobby, my business and – just occasionally – my obsession.
Many thanks to Paul Burgess for featuring me on this edition of the Athletic Fitness and Nutrition podcast.
Click on the first item on the list and it will open in iTunes:

On stage in two days!

There are now less than 48 hours to go until the Pure Elite Fitness Model contest in Margate. I’ll be there on stage, and I’m both looking forward to it and apprehensive in equal measure!

This is the first time I’ve competed in Pure Elite, although I have been on a stage elsewhere in similar contests organised by Miami Pro four times in the past – two categories each time, so in fact I’ve been on the stage for eight separate contests.

So why I am apprehensive? It sounds like I’m an ‘old hand’ at this game! Well, there are a couple of aspects about the Pure Elite that make it all a little bit more of a challenge.

Firstly, there are the age categories. For Miami Pro, I have always entered the over 50’s age group in both the Fitness Model and Muscle Model categories; I’ll be doing the same two category names this Sunday too, but Pure Elite has a different age structure, and I’m in the over 45’s, not over 50’s. This means I’ll be competing against guys who are almost 13 years younger than me – and age is certainly a factor in being able to reach peak physical condition. In my other contests, I was usually the oldest on stage by about 5 years; in this one, I’ll be a week away from my 58th birthday, I suspect I’ll be the oldest again, but will have a much greater age gap to the youngest.

Secondly, I’ve also had another fitness-related focus on my mind. I’ve been raising money for a good cause – a young girl called Esme with an incurable disease. The high point of my fund -raising for her was running a marathon in Dublin on Monday this week (the marathon and cash-raising story is on www.bitly.com/chris4esme). I’m not used to much long-distance running, and I was pretty exhausted at the end of the 26 miles. An article on marathon running I read previously suggested runners need 26 days without training to recover post-run, based on a day’s recovery for every mile ran. I certainly couldn’t afford that time off with the Pure Elite being 6 days after the marathon, so I decided to make that 26 hours off-training rather than 26 days! I hope the marathon hasn’t taken too much out of me for the Pure Elite, and that I haven’t taken my training too far off course as a result.

Apart from the marathon, I think I’ve prepared well for Pure Elite. I have been training alongside Dan Wynes, a young guy to whom I have been acting as fitness mentor for the past six months. Even though I’m the mentor, I know that I have learned as much from Dan as he has from me over these past months, and we have both been determined at pushing each other on. Dan has formally challenged me to be the best of my generation present at Pure Elite, and I issued the same challenge to him.

The most intensive period for us was a week’s dedicated training taken as a trip to Gold’s in Venice Beach, Los Angeles, ending the day before travelling to Dublin. That week in Gold’s was the toughest week’s gym training of my life, and my thanks go to Dan for encouraging me on so much – and also to Rob Riches of True Performance Nutrition (the USA-based company for which I am an ambassador) who joined in the training there and further helped both Dan and me reach new reserves of strength and dedication to achieving the best body we each can.

Coming forward to today, I checked the mirror and scales this morning, and feel happy with what I saw. I’m at the lowest bodyfat for five years, just beating my final number on the Gold’s trip – the bodyfat actually went up significantly in Dublin due to the mega-high carbs fuelling my run on Monday.

Have I done enough to repair the fitness diversion caused by Dublin, and to be a worthy opponent to those competing alongside me on stage? I hope so.

My wife Jenny and Dan’s girlfriend Liz are in the front row of spectators on Sunday, and will be screaming madly for both of us during our separate times on stage. I hope they get to see their chaps have met to the challenges we gave each other with success. We want our ladies to see us achieve results to make them proud of the two of us.

More next week, when Pure Elite will be over – for this year, at least!

Fitness TV time…

Snapshot - 101Interested in fitness on TV?

The TV documentary about me – ‘Fat To Fit at Fifty’ – is being shown by the Community Channel tomorrow. It tells my fitness transformation story and how I’m helping others down the same road. There’s contributions from some of my Personal Training clients, magazine editors, plus fitness professional Rob Riches – who is my own inspiration and the guy who introduced me to fitness in the first place. There’s also views from top local PT Russell Lee, celebrity fitness photographer Simon Howard, and my workout buddy, fitness model Alex Hughes.

It is being shown at the following times on these channel numbers:

Tuesday 17 June – 11AM

Wednesday 18 June – 5AM

The Community Channel is on Sky 539, Virgin Media 233, Freeview 63 and Freeview-HD 109.

I hope you get the chance to watch!

Meet Dan…

Life has many good feelings. And one is when you help generate interest in others for something that you are passionate about.

Chris meets Dan at BodyPower 2014

Chris meets Dan at BodyPower 2014

This has just happened to me. I met a young guy at a trade show recently and somehow infected him with my enthusiasm both for fitness generally, and more specifically for standing on stage in a Fitness Modelling competition. I’ve been committed to a fitness-focussed life for six years now, and having collected a few championship wins on the way, I know how great a lifestyle this is.

The chap in question – Dan Wynes – was already keen on fitness. Indeed, before I met him he had developed an interest in the teachings, approaches and training strategies of fitness professional Rob Riches. Dan and I have that in common, as Rob was my original personal trainer and is a guy for whom I continue to have massive respect.

A 15-minute chat with me bolstered Dan’s enthusiasm levels. So much so that he decided at the end of our conversation to committing to step up his fitness activities substantially and progressing sufficiently over the next six months and that he would enter his first Fitness Model contest organised by Pure Elite in November. Dan asked me to help in whatever ways I can, and requested that I mentor him right up to the contest date.

Well, I’ve never been a mentor before, indeed I had to check in the dictionary exactly what was involved. However, the combination of me knowing just a bit about the subject, my keenness to pass this knowledge on, and Dan’s desire to learn and put this information into practice, seems to be the perfect recipe for mentoring success. So I accepted, and as a result I will be doing what I can to help him get into the best shape of his life so far. I say ‘so far’, because at age 21 he has many more ‘best shapes’ to come.

The term ‘journey’ is over-used on the fitness world, but I think it’s appropriate for Dan as he plans for the time up to his first contest. I am relishing being his guide for the trip – and I rather suspect that I will learn much from him too as we work together and he heads towards that appointment with the stage.

I am very honoured to be asked, and I will endeavour to repay the trust and confidence Dan has placed in me. I hope Dan finds me a good mentor – but if he slackens at all (which he won’t) he will find me morphing into a tor-mentor instead!

Dan will be blogging his own progress over those months, and I invite you to read and subscribe to his blog on www.DanWynesFitness.wordpress.com – and we’ll both let you know how we get on!

TV Times

The TV documentary about me – called ‘Fat To Fit at Fifty’ – is now being shown by the Community Channel.  It tells my fitness transformation story and how I’m helping others down the same road.

There’s contributions from some of my Personal Training clients, magazine editors, and fitness professional Rob Riches – who is my own inspiration and the guy who introduced me to fitness in the first place.  There’s also views from top local PT Russell Lee, celebrity fitness photographer Simon Howard, and my workout buddy, fitness model Alex Hughes.

It is being shown at the following times on these channel numbers:

Monday 19 May – 11AM
Tuesday 20 May – 5AM

The Community Channel is on Sky 539, Virgin Media 233, Freeview 63 and Freeview-HD 109.

I hope you get the chance to watch!

I want to tell you a story…

Well, its not any story, its actually my story.

I’ve created a article for a Los Angeles-based web site called MyFitTribe, as they were keen to tell the world about an obscure 57 year old Englishman that they know.

Depending on how well you know me, and how many of those nearly three-score years  I’ve spent in your company, you may already know some of the info in the article.  Whether its all new or not, I hope its of interest.


My thanks, of course, to MyFItTribe for asking me to do this.

Enjoy the article, any questions or comments as always, please, to Chris@FitnessOverFifty.co.uk

I’ll be back with more blogging next Friday (probably…).  And, as usual, have a healthy and fit sunny weekend!