Hi everybody! Seth Coyne here from youthfulblueprint.com. With so many different perspectives and opinions and beliefs in the health and fitness world it’s useful to learn from many different people. That’s why today I’m interviewing Holly Mersy author of hollymersy.com. She’ll give us a few insights into her excellent views on diet and training. Thanks for being with us Holly! On to question number one:
-Tell us a little bit about yourself/your methods/your philosophies.
I am a Kettlebell instructor, massage therapist, and food experimenter based out of San Diego! I love sharing my knowledge and passion through my company Mersy Fitness and an amazing gym, Ambition Athletics. My philosophies are based around a balanced lifestyle – we must make time for good nutrition, recovery, and relaxation to balance our great physical feats.
-What are the important aspects of an exercise program?
A program must be safe, effective, and fun! These aspects will make it sustainable and that is where most people struggle. Strength training, quick challenging periods of conditioning, and flexibility all have their place in a program.
-What are the advantages of kettlebell training?
When performed with correct instruction kettlebell training is all of the above. Kettlebells are so versatile and you can throw one in the backseat of your car! A well designed kettlebell program can develop a huge amount of strength, endurance, and mobility with just one tool.
Would you mind giving us a sample kettlebell workout that accomplishes the things you mentioned?
5 min of Turkish Get Up practice
Double Kettlebell press x 5
Kettlebell swing x 8
Hip flexor stretch
Repeat 3 rounds
1-arm kettlebell row x6(per side)
Goblet Squat x 8
Repeat 3 rounds
-What role does diet play in your opinion?
Diet is very important! Nutrition determines a person’s level of health and is directly related to physique. Food is fuel and if someone wants their body to perform at a high level the quality of food must be great. I believe most people need to take a more proactive approach to what foods they are putting in their body.
-What are some important staple foods in a healthy diet?
Important foods in every diet include seasonal, local fruits and veggies, meat (grass fed and wild caught depending on budget!), healthy fats (coconut & olive oils, avocados, nuts, etc), and greek yogurt!
-What are some of the biggest threats to health in our society?
I think the biggest threat is a lack of knowledge about the relationship between nutrition and health. People either don’t know or choose not to believe that food plays a HUGE part in our health. We have so much more control than we think.
-Why do so many people fail in their efforts to lose fat and get healthy?
Many people I work with have failed in the past because they don’t break their long term goals into smaller less intimidating short term checkpoints. They go all or nothing and once they fail a few times its on to something new. A healthy diet and exercise program is a lifestyle change and will never be a quick fix. If it sounds too good to be true it probably is! I suggest starting simple, building 1 good habit. Once that is part of a normal routine, add another with the same process.
-What are ways people can motivate themselves to be successful in their health efforts?
I think rewards are fantastic – just don’t make them food or habits that work against the long term goal. Some ideas are new workout clothes, a vacation, a massage, or something to have fun with! Also, people need to think past the physique goals and dig deeper into why they want to get healthy (play with their kids, have more energy, decrease pain or difficulty of daily tasks).
-What kind of benefits does massage therapy provide?
Massage therapy provides a wide range of benefits including reducing stress, anxiety, muscular tension, headaches, and back pain. It promotes better sleep, increased circulation, improved focus, and enhanced immunity. Always discuss your goals with your massage therapist!
-What other kind of lifestyle factors are important?
Sleep and recovery/relaxation are necessary in addition to healthy eating and exercise. Sleep quality can make or break our other factors. If you don’t sleep enough you won’t want to exercise and sugary foods and drinks will seem even more tempting. Recovery and relaxation are a must – we can’t perform at a high intensity continuously. Massage, fun time with friends and family, walks, or simple quiet time are amazing for the mind and body.
-What are your thoughts on dietary supplementation?
I feel that the majority of people should build a healthy, balanced diet before they start spending money on supplements. Real food always comes first! Once that is established a nutritionist should be sought out for advice.
-What would be the biggest priorities in a plan for someone who wants to get healthy and lose, say, 20 pounds?
Really think about why and what the long term goal is. Break it down into smaller, monthly goals. If the goal is to lose 20 pounds, start strength training 3-4 times a week. Add conditioning if there is time, but never sacrifice strength training (Priority!). Food-wise: each time you go to eat something, think “How is this benefiting my health/goals?”. You will make crazy rationalizations at first, but over time it will start to help!
Holly Mersy is a Hardstyle Kettlebell Instructor and Certified Massage Therapist. She is passionate about exercise and nutrition and strives to light a fire in people to work toward the healthiest, happiest life they can imagine. Strength is beauty, strength is confidence! CLICK HERE to train in person or online with Holly!
Seth Coyne is a Certified Sports Nutritionist and a Certified Personal Trainer. He is the founder of www.youthfulblueprint.com. He is the author of the report “The 3 Pillars of Health” which is available for FREE DOWNLOAD.