There can be few amongst us who doesn’t wish that he were a little bit fitter, and perhaps carried a little less weight. Until someone comes up with a pill that’s going to do this for us (and no one has - despite what some people might say) we’re going to have to be hitting the gym for some time to come. Pick your gym carefully - choose it right and you’ll happily spend many hours there. We met with Flex Executive’s Omar Hisham and their place in Sha’ab.
If you’re anything like us, you live a hectic life and probably think you don’t have enough time to spare to fit in a session at the gym. Never mind three times a week, you probably feel you couldn’t even fit it in once. But there’s a nagging voice in the back of your mind telling you to go - before it’s too late. Right?
We all, once we get to a certain age, start to spread around the waist at least. We choose to put it down to nature. But as Omar explains, it’s not really too impossible a challenge to keep that spread at bay.
“I have to be honest though, and say maintaining your condition is not exactly easy”, Omar says. “You’ve probably been living your life in a certain way for years, you have your routines, you have your likes and dislikes - what is important before anyone starts is that they really have the will to rethink their life, and to come up with a new plan”.
This is where the knowledge and experience of Omar, or any professional trainer, comes in to play. We may have a vague idea of how we wished we looked, but only a trainer can help guide us through the most efficient techniques to get there.
He insists on the importance of looking at the whole self and developing an all-round program to suit the individual.
“The single biggest factor to look at is nutrition”, he says. “80% of the way you are is through the nutrition you consume”.
I’d come here to talk to a fitness instructor, so found myself a little surprised to be talking nutrition. I thought Omar would be all about weights and physical workouts. Well, in fact, he is.
He explained further, “Without the right nutrition you won’t benefit from any amount of effort in the gym. Without the right fuel your body won’t respond by either burning fat or building muscle”.
The other 20% comes down to sleeping (I like the sound of that), exercise, cardiovascular training, and sports conditioning.
“Sleeping is critically important to any athlete”, Omar says, “and we often don’t treat it as a serious subject in our own lives. But think about those days you’ve had when you had a bad sleep the night before. You know you didn’t perform well. You didn’t think right, probably didn’t stand up straight, and I’d guess you probably ate all the wrong foods because you thought it would make you feel better”.
I did. And Omar is right - it didn’t.
Omar will set up an individual program for Flex members, that’s his job. You could end up burning 2,000 calories in a session with Omar. After that, and when he leaves the gym, it’s the member’s responsibility to ensure that the rest of the lifestyle fits - and those calories are not instantly returned, and that the member is prepared to do it all again. And again. And again.
“It takes time”, says Omar, “for someone to make this change to their life”. Certainly he’s not offering a quick fix, instead he and Flex Executive offer an ideal environment for the man who has little time, but wants to make the best use of it.
“If you’re looking to raise your everyday all round fitness, you’ll have to be looking in terms of perhaps three months to match what are probably your own expectations”, he says.
We’re not talking about bulking up and becoming bodybuilders, here we’re just being regular guys who figure it’s about time we took some better care of ourselves.
“Everyone is different”, he says, “some people’s genes make them prone to putting on weight in particular areas of their bodies that might make it more difficult to shift”. Here again Omar refers to developing unique programs for fitness as well as advising on nutrition.
We’re hooked. And anyway we’ve run out of excuses not to go to the gym.
When a well-equipped and slick-looking gym is well located and has opening hours to match what we previously thought was a schedule far too busy to fit in any sort of serious fitness training, well, we’ve decided it really is time to change our lives.
See you in the gym - we’ll be the sweaty one in the corner with the pained expression on the face.
Flex Executive is located in Sha’ab Al Bahry. The facilities include an indoor swimming pool and Jacuzzi, Spa and salon, spinning studio, cardio studio, weights and functional training hall, squash courts, and lounges.
Discover more at www.flexfitnessq8.com
First Published in Mens's Passion Issue @26 November 2010