These Pinoy coaches will help you get fit without a gym

Published August 18, 2020, 9:00 AM

by MB Lifestyle

We tapped these coaches to design a program for you as gyms continue to be shuttered 

By KRIZETTE CHU and PAOLA NAVARETTE

Video NOEL PABALATE and JULES VIVAS

BREAK A SWEAT Clockwise from left: Crossfit L1 trainer Ian Tan; Lifthard Athletics head coach Ken Cedrick Tan; HeyGrrrl founder Sheena Mabilangan; Crossfit L2 trainer Gino Mercado; and Primal Ape Crossfit coach Xhi Tabalan

Although being in quarantine undoubtedly has its downsides, for many, it presented an opportunity to establish a new fitness routine. Now the tough part: continuing such routines as we try to find normal footing in a post-quarantine era.

With gyms shut tight, many fitness buffs may still find it hard to work up a sweat in their own homes. And if you live in a small apartment, creating a space where you can lift, leap, and sweat might feel like one more impossible challenge, especially if you’re also working from home or supervising children’s online learning.

Not so, say professional trainers. Having a small space is no excuse not to tumble, kick, and plank, as there are a variety of workouts that can be done almost anywhere, with a little online guidance.

We spoke to five coaches to teach us a thing or two about setting realistic goals for your body with the help of diet and more fitness tips they learned along the way. 

Xhi Tabalan, Primal Ape Crossfit head coach

With a majority of us confined to our homes, what are some steps we all can take to ensure we are as healthy as possible during this time? 

Reconnect with your family and friends. Our best ammunition during this pandemic is eating quality food so try your best to cook meals for your family.

How many days per week would you recommend for someone who’s just beginning or at least intermediate? Is there such a thing as over exercising?

Every individual is unique so the coaches need to do some assessment first before recommending a program. Overexercise can lead to chronic injuries and plateaued results.

How important is your diet to your weight loss? Can you give us an example of what you usually eat in a day?

Dieting for me is overused. For a successful weight loss, my family makes sure we don’t eat processed food like canned goods, instant noodles, and junk food. Simple as that!

What’s the best motivational thing you can tell our readers who are just getting started?

No better time than now.

What do you think is the biggest reason people quit even after starting their routine and diet,  and what’s your advice?

The number one reason they quit is they have high expectations. My best advice is to seek guidance from doctors and coaches. 

What’s your advice to those with pre-existing conditions like high blood or slipped discs? 

Please consult with your doctors because we only depend on your detailed diagnosis. Avoid doing your neighbors’ workout or your favorite artistas’ exercises. Safety first!

For Coach Xhi’s butt workout video, click here:

Sheena Mabilangan, HeyGrrrl founder 

With a majority of us confined to our homes, what are some steps we all can take to ensure we are as healthy as possible during this time? 

Make sure you have a routine. When we have the freedom to essentially do what we want without a locked-in time, we can be too lenient. 

What do you consider three of the biggest mistakes beginners make when they start exercising?

I feel the biggest mistakes that tend to happen are: finding a ‘quick fix’ scheme with a pill or product, over exercising, and immediately undereating. 

How important is your diet to your weight loss? Can you give us an example of what you usually eat in a day?

For breakfast, I would have a bowl of oats with protein powder and banana, and maybe a side bowl of Koko Krunch, a liter of water, and black coffee. 

What’s the best motivational thing you can tell our readers who are just getting started?

If you’re just starting, congratulations because that is usually the hardest step to make. Commit to yourself and believe you can do it. 

What do you think is the biggest reason people quit even after starting their routine and diet, and what’s your advice?

Most people stop because the goal of what they want to achieve seems too hard or impossible. If you are struggling, find a coach or a friend who can help you keep you accountable. 

What types of household items have you used to aid your exercise routine?

On a daily basis, I use cans, water jugs, chairs, and couches for pressing movements, squatting movements, and hinging.

For Coach Sheena’s abs workout video, click here: 

Ken Cedrick Tan, LiftHard Athletics owner and head coach

How do you change up your routine, and where do you get #fitspiration from?

I make sure to workout at least five times a week and try to incorporate weightlifting, bodybuilding, and gymnastics in my routine. I get my fitspiration from my kids. 

With a majority of us confined to our homes, what are some steps we all can take to ensure we are as healthy as possible during this time? 

Try to find a workout buddy, keep a food log, and make your workouts a non-negotiable. 

What do you consider three of the biggest mistakes beginners make when they start exercising?

I’ve noticed that some of my clients either go hard on themselves, do diets that are not sustainable, or they try to follow too many people.

What’s the best motivational thing you can tell our readers who are just getting started?

Don’t beat yourself up. Instead, look at your past unhealthy choices as an opportunity to learn and grow. 

What’s your advice to those with pre-existing conditions like high blood or slipped discs? 

Make sure you have clearance from your doctor before starting a diet or a routine. These pre-existing conditions should not be taken lightly. 

For Coach Ken’s leg workout video, click here:

Gino Mercado, Level 2 Crossfit trainer

How do you change up your routine, and where do you get #fitspiration from?

My training regime is Crossfit so I include strength workouts and sports like Olympic weightlifting, and swimming in my routine. My fitspiration comes from our clients.

To someone just getting started looking to live a healthier lifestyle, what would your advice to them be?

Start with short-term goals like a five-minute daily walk or pick an activity that you’re interested in. Whatever you choose, be sure to pay attention to your form and be kind to yourself. 

What do you consider three of the biggest mistakes beginners make when they start exercising?

Some people rush to gain muscle and lose weight. Others are not seeking help from a coach or following an unsustainable diet program. 

How many days per week would you recommend someone who’s just beginning? Is there such a thing as over exercising?

For beginners, we recommend working out three times a week with one-day rest in between. Overtraining only happens to athletes where they train two times a day, but it may happen to us if we abuse our bodies.

What’s the best motivational thing you can tell our readers who are just getting started?

Enjoy the process and have fun! You should be able to reach your fitness goals without looking at it as a chore or requirement. 

What do you think is the biggest reason people quit even after starting their routine and diet, and what’s your advice?

The biggest reason people quit easily is that they have unrealistic goals. Be patient and don’t be shy to ask for help. 

For Coach Gino’s upper body workout video, click here:

Ian Tan, Crossfit Infinitas coach

What’s your philosophy on health and fitness?

How you do one thing is how you do everything. You can’t be disciplined in training and not be disciplined in your day job, so the same goes with your diet. In the end, you are your greatest critic. 

To someone just getting started looking to live a healthier lifestyle, what would your advice to them be?

Write down what you do every day. The only way to improve and change something is to track it. 

With a majority of us confined to our homes, what are some steps we all can take to ensure we are as healthy as possible during this time? 

Mental health is one thing we can focus on. Meditating, deep breathing, or simply enjoying some alone time can make positive impacts on your health. 

How important is your diet to your weight loss? 

The best way to lose fat is to eat the right food and pair it up with some high-intensity workouts. My plate is usually made up of vegetables on one half, and a bit of fat, carbs, and protein on the other half.

What do you think is the biggest reason people quit?

If you don’t know why you’re doing something, you’ll eventually give up. Knowing your “why” is what athletes hang on to when they feel like giving up. 

What types of household items have you used to aid your exercise routine?

I’ve used a backpack filled with books and canned goods, a pan, a five-gallon water container, a chair, a door, and a table.

For Coach Ian’s HIIT workout video, click here:

 
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