9 Lessons From 5 Years In a Start-Up Business

Here are 9 big lessons that I take from the last 5 years of the journey with ACLAÍ. Some of them I had a fair idea of before I started and others I had no clue about, but all of them have been thoroughly put to the test during the day to day running of ACLAÍ over the last 5 years. I put this post together so that they might be useful to anyone who is going through the process of starting a business at the moment, and also to give our members an idea of the road that has been travelled to get ACLAÍ to the place that it is in today.

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Negative Body Image, Anxiety, and Consumerism

Recently, I went on BBC Radio Ulster to answer a couple of questions around the issue of self body image, and working towards a ‘beach body’. To tell you the truth, it was a pretty frustrating experience. I think that the presenter on the radio show was half expecting me to come on and start promoting a diet or some sort of training regime that would help the masses get the six pack ready for the summer.

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Training Like a Pro in an Amateur Set Up: GAA Performance

The world and its dog know that being a top inter-county player takes a lot of commitment, ambition, and skill. Every year we hear of the latest methods that inter-county teams are trying out to get the edge on their competitors, and we constantly hear the word ‘professional’ when describing our top players and even at the top club level. GAA strength and conditioning is now part of most inter county setups

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7 Ways to be more active Outside of the Gym

I would be so bold as to say that when it comes to Personal Training in Cork, we know what we are talking about. We opened our doors in August 2013 and since then have given back around 10,000 hours of coaching to our clients, with a lot of success stories along the way. However, doing some personal training 2 or 3 times per week is not enough in its own to get real life changing results. Real results, whether that be in body transformation, or sports performance comes from within. It comes from finally deciding to make the change, and pursue your goals consistently. Having expert advice, coaching, motivation, and accountability are crucial aspects of success when it comes to personal training, and strength and conditioning. This article is about the time you spend AWAY from the gym, and how you can get to your goal in the most efficient way possible. Enjoy

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Is Barefoot Running Good for Health?

Barefoot running is becoming ever more popular, especially with the advent of minimalist footwear such as Nike Frees and Vibram Five Fingers. Even still, the vast majority of people are unaware of the benefits that you can get from going barefoot in your training, not only running, but in the gym as well. From personal experience, I have found great improvements in certain aspects of my training since wearing my Vibrams during gym sessions, and doing some barefoot jogging on grass. I spent 5 weeks in Melbourne in 2011 rehabbing a long standing groin injury, and regular barefoot running round the footy oval was a key part of my rehab. I started with one lap the week that I arrived, and by the time I left, I could have run barefoot all day, pain free. If we are rehabbing an injury at ACLAÍ, you can be sure that there will be a barefoot aspect to the training.

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5 Common Mistakes Made by GAA Players

The GAA player is typically raised on two types of training session. 1. Run as hard as you can, and 2. Hurl/ play football as hard and fast as you can. This quickly leads to a burning out of the energy reserves and the onset of an overtraining effect a few months into a training program. In addition, if this is how you train, you will be too tired to spend some quality time working on your skills, doing mobility work, or recovery work

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Top 5 Tips For Recovering After A Hard Session

These days, the market is saturated with products that promise to make us faster, stronger, fitter, and recover faster from exercise. Included in this vast list are an infinite number of supplements, multi-coloured liquids, fancy tights, cold baths, space aged shoes, magic jewellery, and all kinds of powders. Some of them work for some people, and the placebo affect of others cannot be denied. However, one thing is certain, and that is that the strategies outlined in this article are among the most effective methods of recovery available to man!

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How to Fix a Bad Diet

If you want to start on a healthier path when it comes to your food, I would highly recommend taking the points below on board, in the order presented, and sticking with them. They are based on the approach that we have taken at ACLAÍ with many of our members, producing great results, and long lasting satisfaction. It is based on whole foods, a few key positive habits, and on eating real food, for real life. 

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Is The Gym Enough To Build A Healthy Body and Mind?

Funny story. Circa 2009 I was bringing a class of undergraduate sport and exercise science students through some basic strength training techniques at the University of Limerick. '...and this is the back squat', I said as I demonstrated a back squat with an empty bar in the elite training room in the University Arena. I was no sooner at the bottom position of the squat than i heard the almighty tear from my pants splitting in two at the crotch. The students will not forget that session in a hurry!

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The Dual Battle of Losing Weight While Dealing with Pain

It is possible to feel like you are in a vicious circle of dealing with an injury and trying to loose weight. You might be making progress with your fitness, and all of a sudden the old back injury flares up. This causes you to have to rest up for a while, and in the meantime you start to loose the training gains that you build up. Being inactive makes it more likely that you will get injured again, and so the circle continues.

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A Guide to Effective Goal Setting

Goal setting. What is the point? Most of the time you end up setting some great goal for yourself, write it in your diary or on some random piece of paper, set it aside, and forget about it until a later date where it pops into your head and you feel a sudden pang of guilt for not staying the course. In this context, goals setting is more harmful that beneficial, as time spent worrying about things that never happened is time wasted. However, with a bit of know-how, you can set yourself up for real success if you hit the right notes with you goal setting. Here are three steps to setting good goals that will help elevate you to you highest ambitions.

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Parents, Teenagers, and Steroid Use

Last week I featured in the Evening Echo in a piece by journalist Padraig Hoare about steroid use in teenagers, and as it is a very serious and unfortunately popular subject these days, I wanted to expand a bit on the bit that was published. Hopefully this can be a very basic useful guide/ advice for parents of teenagers who are starting out with the gym, and teenagers who want to get into great shape. Its not something that has been discussed on this blog at length, or one that I spend a lot of time on, but it is a serious issue that needs to be discussed openly, as anecdotal evidence certainly suggests a growing culture of anabolic steroid use in young people. This is not some far-away problem on another land. It happens right here in Cork and probably every other town and city in Ireland.

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A Different Type of Personal Training in Cork

Did you ever look at something and just think to yourself; 'that does not feel right'?

Well that's what happened to me when I finished a degree in Sport and Exercise Science at the University of Limerick in 2007. I entered the big bad world of the so called 'fitness industry'. I was set to take the health and sports performance world by storm with all my degrees and high ambitions. Shortly thereafter, I started to work as a gym instructor, only to leave disappointed and disillusioned after only a couple of months. I spent most of my time cleaning toilets and gym equipment and hoovering the floor.

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Keeping Your Gym Gains in Festival Season

You have been working hard to get into shape once and for all. Your making progress. But you know you have a busy social schedule ahead between weddings, festivals, and gigs you want to attend. You know the basics of what you should be eating, and you are on a roll with your training, and you want to enjoy your social life over the summer as well as keep the gains going. With festival season, usually comes consumption of more fast-food, and more high-sugar, or alcoholic drinks.

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