The Parker Practice Fitness Method Explained

Louise Parker’s eponymous Parker Practice is renowned for its impressive body transformations. And while diet plays an integral role to the programme, the importance of exercise shouldn’t be discounted. We caught up with resident Parker Practice PT Nick Oshi to find out more about how the method works and the science behind it…
The Parker Practice Fitness Method Explained

CREATED IN PARTNERSHIP WITH THE PARKER PRACTICE

 

Learn To Love Exercise

“It’s crucial to remember exercise and nutrition go hand in hand if you’re looking to make lifelong lifestyle changes. Our method isn’t just about fitting in a workout here and there – we encourage you to weave movement into your life so that, ultimately, you stop thinking about exercise as a burden. With many of us spending more time at home, try doing some light stretches in between phone calls, or take a call while going for a walk. If you have a family, taking walks together is a great way to inculcate good habits. If you’re strapped for time, even some mobility exercises in the evening is better than nothing. We encourage you to keep an open mind when it comes to trying new activities – you’ll soon wake up to a body that was born to move.”

Schedule Your Workouts 

“On the Parker Practice programme, you’ll start by doing three or four workouts every week, aiming not to take two consecutive days off. By working in this way, it means you can concentrate your workouts during the week, when it’s easier to be more focused and have a routine, and saving the rest days for the weekend, which can help maintain focus and momentum. Plus, once you get to the weekend, it’s all too easy to make excuses for not working out. Once you’ve adapted to doing at least three sessions per week, consider adding in an extra session or varying the intensity of your sessions.”

Factor In A Rest Day

“It is possible to overdo it – rest is just as important as exercise itself. It’s during a rest day that your body adapts to the strain of exercise and gets stronger. If you don’t give your body time to recover, it could lead to muscle breakdown and injury. If your muscles are constantly sore or if you’re struggling to recover before your next workout, or if you feel irritable, it could be worth taking an additional rest day.”

 

Results come from the perfect balance of cardio, strength and mobility – a sure-fire way to build fitness and strength.

Take A Rounded Approach

“It’s important to focus on cardio and strength if you’re looking to lose weight and build lean muscle. However, mobility should also be included to prevent injury and enhance performance. At The Parker Practice, each workout session starts with mobility exercises to ensure joints are close enough to their full range of motion – this is particularly important now that we lead such sedentary lives. For the rest of a session, we focus on multi joint compound exercises, such as dumbbell thrusters or renegade rows, which work the whole body, interspersed with bursts of cardio. This is our method – it’s a fantastic way to build fitness, strength and burn energy.”

Know It’s Suitable For Everyone

“Whatever your level of fitness, the programme is for you. We use the talk test or rate of perceived exhaustion to monitor how challenged you are during a workout – for example, one being light activity where it’s easy to talk and ten being maximum effort where you struggle to have a conversation. It’s also important to focus on form, particularly during strength training. If you are struggling to maintain form at the beginning of a set, chances are the weight you’re using is too heavy, so don’t be afraid to scale things back. If you’re completely new to exercise, doing one minute run/walk intervals for 20 minutes is a great way to build fitness.”

Fuel Your Sessions

“On the days of a particularly intense workout, it’s vital to remember to eat enough carbs before your session to ensure glycogen levels are at an optimum, and afterwards, eat plenty of protein to aid recovery. Without enough energy, you won’t be able to work at your maximum. On your rest days, eat less carbs as you won’t need them for energy, but keep your protein levels topped up to aid the recovery process. We advocate the use of whole, real foods before turning to supplements like protein powders.”

 

Concentrate your workouts during the week when it’s easier to stick to a routine and save rest days for the weekend.

Set Goals To Maintain Focus

“Setting short- and long-term goals is our way to keep you motivated. Start by setting goals over a 12-week period and then break them down to monthly macro goals and weekly mini goals. Always check in with yourself and think whether your goals are realistic – this can also be a good way to sense early when motivation is waning.” 

Stick To A Small Amount Of Kit

“The last year has proven you don’t need loads of equipment to get fit. All you need to get going is a couple of pairs of dumbbells – anything in the range of three to five kilos is perfect. A kettlebell is also a good option – look for an 8kg kettlebell to start you on your fitness journey.” 

Avoid A Plateau

“If you’re sticking to a routine and eating well, you’ll see and feel the results within two weeks. Within 12 weeks, you’ll see a significant change. After the first month or so, however, it’s not uncommon to experience a plateau as your body adapts to change. Variety in your workouts is the key to avoiding a plateau – it’s important to keep your body guessing.”

 

For more information visit TheParkerPractice.com

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