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Profile of the Month
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Basic Information
Name: Nathan  Brown
Gender: Male
Age: 43
Location: United Arab Emirates
Personal Information
Web URL:
Day job:

Group GX Training Manager

Favorite workout activity:

Functional Training

Favorite exercise:

BODYPUMP

Favorite time to workout:

Prefer mornings

Number of workouts per week:

10

Whenever I don't workout I feel:

Moody

When it comes to my body im most proud of my:

Legs

My greatest accomplishment overall is:

Winning my first New Zealand Kickboxing title in the early 90's

My guilty pleasure:

A dose of fish n chips!

The best advice I can give is:

Remain as healthy as you can for as long as you live!

My favorite sports clothing brand:

Adidas

My favorite workout music:

Bob Marley

My favorite reads:

Awaken the giant within: Anthony Robbins

My favorite movies and TV shows:

Black Hawke down Once were warriors Whale Rider Utu

Favorite saying:

"Doris"

I am certified in:

*Advanced personal training NETWORK FOR FITNESS PROFESSIONALS *TRX instructor certified *Elite Adidas Training Director *Les Mills Middle East & India Master Trainer *BOSU instructor certified *A.C.E Educational provider *Interior Designer by trade

About me:

I was a former 3 x New Zealand Kickboxing Champion & got hooked into teaching group fitness classes in the 90s. Years later the fitness industry allowed me to meet my beautiful wife Fiona who was an ex-flight attendant for the Royal Family in Abu Dhabi. We now have an adorable son Nathan Jnr who is aged 2.The love of our lives! I now live & reside in Dubai & have been in the Middle East for almost 11 years. My passion is golf, as well as enjoying a glass of red wine & a cuban cigar on the occassion.

Q & A with the star:

Fit Junction: Nathan, you’re a veteran in the fitness industry with tons of certifications and years of experience. What made you get into fitness?

Nathan: That’s right, my career started in the FI almost 25 years ago in a little town called Whakatane, in New Zealand. Nothing actually got me into fitness as most kiwis are generally addicted to exercise. This starts from school & obviously my parents who were also great athletes in their time were very supportive to my two sisters & me as well. In all honesty I was a chronic asthmatic at a young age & despised of running which was part of our sports culture in all schools. I decided to take up a martial art that was based upon our maori cultural philosophies, with a focus on ground wrestling, kickboxing, boxing, & karate all in one. This is now commonly   known as mixed martial arts. I joined the whanau (family of fighters) called Rangataua O Aotearoa (Warriors of New Zealand) in 1983. The foundation & grounding was to be my success as a fitness professional years later. A few years later, my sister who was 1 year older than myself, died at age 20 from a severe asthmatic attack. Her death was the real wake up call for me, & after achieving my Black Belt honours in 1987, I presented my belt to her & lay it on her grave.  It is now 2010, & I haven’t looked back since on what regular exercise & good nutrition has done. My asthma has never ever been a contributing factor for excuses no more!  

 

Fit Junction: You’re 42 years old but you don’t look a day over 32!! How in the world do you do that. Is that because you workout so much? Is it genetics? More importantly, can an average joe who works out an hour a day be able to look this fit ?


Nathan: I guess I’m blessed to have grand -parents & then my own parents who have amazing genes, in addition exercise has been a lifestyle I have come to know at an early age. If an average joe blogs  works out at least once a day I commend them & they are already on the right path of change. This takes much discipline & conditioning to acquire the above.  I must admit that at my tender age of 42, my nutrition has become a little more structured with small compact meals, lots of fruit, vegetables & protein, plus I gauge the size portions of not over indulging.  Some of my ex-personal training clients who I categories  as VVIP (meaning the rich & famous) have a bank account beyond our comprehension…….a royal family member once said to me, QUOTE:“ After all, what is all the money in the world if you don’t have your health”, ……. He continued to say, I am lucky you entered into my life Nathan” for showing me the true value of how important exercise & good nutrition is, I can now play comfortable with my kids without running out of breath! For this I say thank you”!

 

Fit Junction: Whats the number 1 thing you like about being fit?

Nathan: For starters, you get compliments from parties like FIT JUNCTION saying, “Wow, you don’t look your age”. On a more serious note, fitness is not just about a cosmetic cream, where you wipe on & then wipe off after you have finished. It’s about being in tune with your body which equals: PHYSICAL, MENTAL & SPIRITUAL, this allows my entire body to function to enjoy life at any given time!

 

Fit Junction: What about your biggest accomplishment in the fitness field. What are you proud of the most?

Nathan: From 1992-1998 we was a former 4 x New Zealand, 2 x Inter-continental & 2 x Commonwealth Kick Boxing Champion. In addition, I was ranked 4th in the world by WKA (World Kickboxing Association) during this time. As a substitute to my training regime, I also took up squash as a way to keep myself fit. I played for 5 seasons & represented my home town in 4 consecutive New Zealand national championships. In 2003 I was introduced to a sport by a personal training client who said you will become addicted …… HAVE you guessed what the sport is yet? Yep, that’s right, GOLF! I then went on to win the Abu Dhabi & UAE Airport cup 2008 with a playing field of over 70 players. At the time I was playing off a 12 handicap. I now play off an 8 handicap!

 

Chilling with the trophies. The good old days



Fit Junction: Talking about healthy lifestyles, whats a day like in the life of Nathan Brown

Nathan: My day starts at 5am, I’m actually an early riser & usually beat my 2 year old son at getting up in the mornings  which will quite often kick start with a piece of fruit, a glucose gel pack & a multi-vitamin. My training regime will differ from day to day but it will either be a 30 lap swim, or 10k run or a 2 hour indoor cycling bike ride. By 6.30am – 7ish, I’m doing a series of cross fit training stations that are based upon functional movement (High intensity). By 7.30am I often teach an RPM (indoor cycling class), & a BODYPUMP class until 9.30am. I then head into the office or alternatively will visit clubs for morning meetings if scheduled. Since my specific field is in training as I am employed by Fitness First as the Group GX Training Manager for the Middle East & North African regions, club visits are important for me on a weekly bases regarding quality control.  9.30am (Main meal / Breakfast) is a crucial time for me to refuel my body as I have ONLY supplemented on protein shakes,snack bars, bananas/fruit/. I contain porridge as my main source of food until the next 3 hours; this is mixed with honey & raisins. From 11.30am (SNACK) Up until 1.30pm (Main meal of the day) when most of my admin duties have completed & this can vary from assessments, organizing & strategizing training calendars, team building excursions, club visits to view instructors classes, training intensives, module training, mentorship training, I have eaten 2 compact meals by this time. 3.00pm. (SNACK) I can often be found in the training academy situated in the biggest Fitness First Club in the world, Burjuman. This is where the production of training education is conducted from 1st aid certification to personal training certification & any mentorship programs for all our employees. 5pm. (SNACK) Learning or studying a series of class routines/Choreography & completing work related emails/conference calls. 6.30pm. Teaching a class /lesson either BODYPUMP/BODYCOMBAT/RPM until 8.30pm (LIGHT DINNER).

Light dinner, usually dry salad, & portion size is small if I am eating tuna/chicken or strips of pasta (no more than a fist size) 9 – 9.30pm. In bed sound asleep!

 

Fit Junction: Now for the stuff our reader would be waiting for – knowledge and tips only someone like you could share.  So here’s the first one. “How do you control junk food cravings? I can stay on a healthy diet for a couple of weeks, but then I start binge eating and im back to square one. How can I kick this habit?”

Nathan: Good question! Craving or what’s more commonly known as “binge eating” happens because your meals are irregular. This means you are waiting way to long in between your next food intake. Hence the reason why I have outlined in my normal day routine (above) the amount of compact meals I supplement a day. Give yourself at least a maximum period of 3 hours before you next have to refuel your body. This will help & assist you to avoid junk food eating.  My recommendation is to start to prepare meal’s  & snacks for the day / healthy choice obviously especially if your job is constantly on the move like mine. 

 


Fit Junction: “I’ve lost a lot of weight and am in pretty good shape. But I can’t seem to get rid of those last 15lbs. I workout the same amount and have a normal healthy diet. What could be the reasons for my problem?”
 

Nathan: You will probably need to change the intensity of the workout if your nutrition is sound. Intensity means, work higher repetitions & speed execution. The actual change in your normal training program will almost shock your body into waking it up again. Boxing drills & kickboxing drills are fantastic for this extra shift in weight loss, functional training as opposed to seated machines, cross training cardio machines as opposed to a stationary bike, this all helps increase your metabolic rate to assist in shredding those last stubborn & unwanted pounds.

 

Fit Junction: “How much weight should I focus on losing per week if I want to lose it healthily?”

Nathan: Depending on your age this could vary from 2-5 pounds. To be honest most exercise users (especially new comers that have joined a fitness club no less than 6 months) are addicted to weighing themselves in the morning, in the afternoon, in the evening… basically any time they can get their hands on a set of scales. At times this can lead to false misconceptions & much disappointment due to the fact the user was told you will lose weight in no time! What I have always assessed my clients on is purely to do with their clothes. Their best pair of jeans or favorite top no longer fits them, use this to gauge their weight loss – it’s a much better tool to use, & something tangible they can actually touch & feel every time.

 


Fit Junction: Now we come to what we call the Top 3 section of the interview. What are your top 3 exercise recommendations to tone your body?

Nathan:

EXERCISE 1. (10 reps x 3 sets) lying down, Swiss ball dumbbell chest press, (10 reps x 3 sets) with an atomic (prone) knee tuck & push up. This will work the chest, shoulders & small muscles like biceps & triceps also. The atomic push up is great for overloading the chest muscles as well as working the core with the added plank. It is also a pure bodyweight exercise that’s compound in terms of efficiency.

EXERCISE 2. (10 reps x 3 sets) Power jump squats using a weighted medicine ball to add extra cardio training. Fantastic burn on the legs, gluteus maximus (butt) & overall conditioning to the lower region.


EXERCISE 3.
(15 reps x 3 sets) TRX combo: Suspended chest press, TRX pull ups, & TRX 1 legged lunge jumps, complete with TRX suspended atomic plank

 

 

Fit Junction: How about the Top 3 exercises for weight loss ?

Nathan:

EXERCISE 1: (5 sets x 1 minute intervals) Boxing pad intervals+ Kickboxing rounds of 1 minute intervals)

EXERCISE 2: Cardio combo. (5 sets x 2 minutes)Rowing machine+ Cross trainer

EXERCISE 3: 40 minute functional weight training circuit + 10 minute core & back strength phase + 10 minute stretch & cool down

 


Fit Junction: Staying with the Top 3 beat, what are your top 3 exercises for muscle gain?

Nathan: When I analyze how to gain muscle I encourage 70% of exercises to be executed on supported benches. The reason being is the actual lifting of heavy weight to increase size, I feel requires much isolated movement. This means you are specifically working one muscle group at a time; your weight selection is at least over 50% of your body weight & a maximum of 80% if you want to maintain perfect technique throughout the execution phases.

EXERCISE 1: Lying bench press

EXERCISE 2: Smith Machine squat rack

EXERCISE 3: Seated D/B Shoulder press

 


Fit Junction: We get a lot of emails on women asking us how they can get a rounder, fuller butt. Got any tips for that?

Nathan: There are definitely a few exercises to assist in achieving this, however let’s take into consideration superstars like Jennifer Lopez, Beyonce & co have a genetic advantage. On that note, any type of squat movement will assist in toning the butt muscles as well as the legs. Execution is important; because you want a much deeper squat than the normal 90 degree angle you would normally do in a BODYPUMP class. Attending certain step classes & specific exercises such as the butt blaster machine are also fantastic. If you’re really willing to excel into a different type of squats, try the single legged squats, which will add a complete different dimension to the normal squats, & assist in a firm butt. My suggestion would be to execute 10/15 reps, & complete 5 sets for all.

 


Fit Junction: If there was any kind of food you could ask people to stay away from, what would it be?

Nathan: Nothing…… I believe in eating any kind of food whether this is fried or not, BUT don’t get me wrong & misconceive that fatty foods or foods high in sugars are good for you. If you are eating regular healthy meals 6 times a week then you do have the ability to indulge! Trust me, your body adapts to eating healthy, so every now & again a piece of chocolate is not going to make a dramatic change. However, I would highly recommend to stare away from takeout foods whenever possible.  

 


Fit Junction: Alcohol every weekend – good or bad ?

Nathan: I guess this is where most people go wrong. Alcohol, if you drink in “moderation” like eating the right foods is absolutely fine. Remember this is what works for me, & I believe if you can have alcohol with your meal we are talking minimum risk to putting on weight. In the same breath, binge drinking can have dramatic results on your body if you go all out & this is your consistent weekly or weekend routine. 

 


Fit Junction: Nathan, you’ve given us some great tips today. Now as a parting gift for our readers, whats the best advice you can give them to stay motivated so that they can achieve their goals?

Nathan: Actually, motivation is only part of staying in shape & I believe this is the easy step. Once you change your physiological state & follow a regular exercise pattern where perhaps you train on Monday/Wednesdays, & Fridays, you won’t go wrong. I suppose the routine you set becomes a habit & this habit is a bit like driving a car, it becomes automatic over a period of time. Being motivated to exercise is exactly the same! Changing your physiological state also means having self belief to motivate yourself, this will then allow you to discipline your actions & eventually it will become a conditioning habit. So, what are you waiting for, get started & make a habit of it! Yours in health & fitness.

 


 
 
   
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