Healthy Living London’s Hannah Cox has recently discovered Fight City Gym, in Moorgate, London. With summer quickly approaching, Hannah was looking for a gym, a P.T. and classes that would help her with her health and fitness goals. Whilst dance classes, such as POPfit, are still one of Hannah’s favourite classes to go to, she was surprised at how much she has enjoyed going to Fight City Gym where she has found… not only a gym, but Fabio – her P.T., as well as a variety of martial arts training classes.
As always, I like to add variety to my workouts. I often choose dance classes, or yoga classes, so I thought I’d mix up my routine and try out a gym I had not been to before, that also has classes and personal trainers too; so I headed to Fight City Gym, for something new. A surprise to many, as a ‘Fight Gym’ would never normally be my first choice, but “variety is the spice of life”, as they say! Plus, it’s not too far from my home, so I really have no excuse not to get my butt down to the gym.
For my first visit, I signed up with a personal trainer, Fabio, as I believe this is the best way to get to know the space, without feeling totally overwhelmed. To begin, Fabio led me through a few simple movements, as he assessed my form; this is essential for any P.T., as they can see your posture, form and any weak spots that you may have. It also gives a P.T. the opportunity to ask questions about any injuries that they can be mindful of, and strengthen, when you workout with them. I have been training with Fabio for a few weeks now and he is always mindful of my knee injury and he never needs prompting. I really admire and appreciate that he has taken the time to get to know me and my needs whilst training, as an individual client, not just another body. Plus, he often says, ‘…excellent Hannah’, and I
need like the encouragement!
Each session I have had with Fabio has been different and always seems to include something fun. He creates individual workouts that leave me wondering what he’s going to get me to do next. Here are a few examples of the sessions I have had with Fabio…
- Hips and legs focus – Sled pushing. Trap bar dead lifts. Bridges. Overhead bar bell press. Squats with blocks – hundreds of them! Crunches. Loaded carry (ball). Bicycle weights. Kettle bell snatch. Bulgarian bag shoulder press. Band assisted press-ups – loved this as it’s the first time I’ve been able to do more than one push-up!
- Upper Body Focus – Hip thrusts and pulls with the sled. Loaded carry with 10kg and 15kg balls. Rope pulling on the sled. Sled pushing. Band assisted neutral grip pull-ups – again, I loved this as I’ve never been able to do a pull-up! Cable push and pull. Chest supported kick backs. Chest supported bicep curls. Two arms neutral grip pronated triceps extension.
- Core focus – Serrates sit-ups (weights). Renegade row. Knees to elbow planks. Plank, elbow to hands. Elbow grab sit-ups (using the boxing ring). Cone sprints. Pick-up cones – a fun game Fabio made up that got my heart pumping! Leg raises over the head and down. Plus a few exercises to strengthen my hips to support my knee – Pigeon pose. Single leg raises whilst hugging the opposite leg.
Fabio is a great P.T. for me as he is encouraging, friendly and not a bully. By this, I mean that if I am struggling with an exercise, he allows time for me to breathe, but gently persuades me to finish the rep. He knows my injuries and formulates exercises to strengthen and help recovery… even though the leg focus session had me walking like I had been horseback riding continuously for days – oh the pain! Fabio has also shared his email with me, so that I can ask any questions; whether they are related to our session or are other health and fitness based questions that I have, he is happy to respond. Though I’m sure this doesn’t stretch to me asking if he knows the ‘Fury’ brother in this year’s Love Island!
As well as the fabulous Fabio, I have also participated in BJJ – Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu with Alain. Their Monday lunchtime class is for beginners, or so they say! Be warned, I couldn’t spot a beginner in there, other than myself! Having said that, I’ve always thought that the best way to learn, is to be the worst in the room – you can only be inspired/pushed/taught/guided… to be better. Plus, it proves for a rather awesome display whenever the instructor shows the more advanced options with a more advanced pupil.
Upon joining this class, I have to admit that I was initially intimidated and nervous. I have never practised Jiu Jitsu before and as the class was packed, with 23 males and only 3 females, I was mentally retreating! The warm-up of backward-rolls and back crawls left a queue that formed a viewing gallery where people could watch and clearly see that I haven’t done a bankward-roll since gym class aged 11 years old! But, as the partner work began, I soon relaxed and instead focused on the instructor and my partner; a lovely girl called Hani who was so encouraging and helpful, I soon forgot to be nervous! Partner focused work allowed Hani to correct me or instruct me when I hadn’t quite picked up the correct move. I hope Hani is there everytime I join BJJ, she was so patient and thoughtful, never annoyed at my amateur status. I even yelped the first time I was floored! To this, we laughed!
Piece of advice… “tap out” when you want your partner to stop! I didn’t know this, even though it seems so obvious now, whilst nursing a sore shoulder! This is why I think the gym really needs to have an ‘Absolute Beginners’ class.
Whilst Fight City Gym is rather testosterone filled, (you can smell it in the air!) it is also very accepting. I have joined a few classes, spent time in the gym and have been training with Fabio, and I have not felt out of place or unwelcome. Having a P.T. introduce the space to me definitely helped with my confidence in getting to know the equipment. The occasional beep by the boxing ring, initially alarmed me, but I am now familiar with the space and sounds and I feel confident when arriving to class. This isn’t to say I don’t still get a little nervous when I attend group classes, I usually do, but I have this mild anxiety because I’m an amateur when it comes to martial arts. Hopefully, this anxiety will dissipate as I become stronger and more confident with Jiu Jitsu… and not panic that I’m going to go home with a black eye!
Find Out More:
Price List: https://fightcitygym.co.uk/memberships/
Top Tip – If you can, avoid lunchtime hours as it can get quite busy. The gym is conveniently located near Old Street, so I think a lot of people pop in on their lunch break.
Check out… Top Tips To Get The Best Results When Training from Personal Trainer Fabio Domingues… here.
*Health Advice:It is advisable to consult with your doctor before beginning any new exercise program.