SunnyFitness Workout Tips #0-10

SUNNYFITNESS TIPS #0
Let’s get started!



I started to write a new, long term series with short, practical training and lifestyle tips! I beleive they are EVERGREEN, because they have been working for a long time and for most people. They are based on tons of scientific evidence and real life practical experiences. Time will tell how they stand.

This will be a constantly updated article every week. Stay tuned and check back regularly!

How to get more healthy, strong, lean, durable, skillful, flexible, explosive, energetic, confident, conscious about your training and lifestyle choices!
For general and professional training purposes, for the athletes of life!
Im sure some of them will be already familiar if you have been training for a while but there is a high chance you will also find missing puzzle pieces to develop your trainings and fitness level.

You can read in this series about:
– training principles
– useful, simple exercises
– training methods and programming
– exercise physiology and a bit of science
– nutrition and lifestyle habits for better performance and recovery
– mindset and mentality for training
– how to be succesful in the competitions
– workout motivation
– common misconceptions in the fitness world
– random surprises 😉

Write me if you would like hear about any specific topic! info@mihalysafran.com

Collect the SUNNYFITNESS TIPS and put together your training puzzle!

Bonus tip for today
It doesn’t matter where you are now, how is your fitness level, you can always find and make the first step for being more fit in the future!

Contents

(click on the titles below to jump directly to a certain FITNESS TIP)

SUNNYFITNESS TIPS #1 Keep Moving

SUNNYFITNESS TIPS #2 Master the basics

SUNNYFITNESS TIPS #3 Move every day

SUNNYFITNESS TIPS #4 Warm up

SUNNYFITNESS TIPS #5 Show up regularly

SUNNYFITNESS TIPS #6 Breathe more effectively (part 1.)

SUNNYFITNESS TIPS #7 Quality over quantity

SUNNYFITNESS TIPS #8 Challenge yourself

SUNNYFITNESS TIPS #9 Become a generalist in movement

SUNNYFITNESS TIPS #10 Support the recovery

A brief introduction about me, why I started sharing now the SUNNYFITNESS TIPS.

I’ve been practicing sports almost every day for 30+ years and coaching fitness since 2015.
I spent 20+ years in the canoe professional sport (EU champion, junior world champion, Olympian 2008, winning over 200 races individually and in team, etc.).
I also practiced for shorter-longer periods: handball, pentathlon, swimming, basketball, windsurf, wave SUP, ice-swimming and recently I participate on OCR competitions.
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I was on the top and succesful, but also at the bottom with injuries and overtrained, so I had first hand experience in physiotherapy, injury prevention, sport psychology, pilates.
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I studied biochemisty in the university and later exercise physiology, coaching, biophysics, quantum-biology. I wrote many articles, books in the topics above.
I have been always courious learning about the best methods which works.
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Why I call my trainings SunnyFitness? ☀️
I like doing sports and being outdoors in nature. Thats it. And I think many people also need this combo in the modern world.

(check the article What is SunnyFitness for more details!)

My head is full with cool informations, I would like to share all these knowledge and experience!
Stay tuned!

SUNNYFITNESS TIPS #1
Keep Moving

I hope everyone is doing sports regularly or at least some daily, light movements!
If no, its never too late to start a more sporty lifestyle!
😉


Benefits of the right type and dose of regular training:
✔️healthy body: musculoskeletal-cardiovascular-nervous-immune systems, better brain and cognitive function, posture, metabolism, sleep, stronger joints and bones etc.
✔️keeps your bodyweight and fat percentage in the optimal range
✔️reduces the risk of metabolic diseases, sudden injuries from falling
✔️slows down aging, makes you strong, durable and flexible even in older age, prevents osteoporosis
✔️makes you more self-confident, more tough in the movement and in the every day life
✔️enhances your mood, happines level, creativity and you can avoid anxiety, depression
✔️teaches you how to stay humble and a fighter at the same time
✔️helps to decrease and manage better stress
ETC…
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In general it promotes a better quality of life immediately and in the long run as well!

We were born to move, so keep moving!
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Bonus tip for today
WALKING is the most practical, easily accessible form of working out with a lot of health and fitness benefits. If you have no time, no conditions for a normal workout, at least go walking every day!

SUNNYFITNESS TIPS #2
Master the basics

Think about movement and sports like a pyramid structure!

How would you build it up?


For me, on the bottom are the basics and on the higher level all the modern sports and cool stunts what you see on social media.
Build solid basics to have the foundation for a healthy, strong body in the long run and for high level performance!
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0. Level: Metabolic health (surprise??)
If the engine is broken, why do some people want to go directly to Formula-1 competition? Fix stuffs around your metabolism (circadian rhythm, breathing, sleep, nutrition), then you will have more energy for the trainings and you recover, develop faster.
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1. Level: Be in control of your body.
Natural movement patterns, coordination, body awareness, basic bodyweight strenght, basic endurance, sufficient joint mobility-stability.
Cool workout method examples: Natural Movements, gymnastics, athletics, calisthenics, pilates, yoga, etc..
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2. Level: Absolute strenght and endurance.
Develop further the strenght with weights in pushing – pulling – squat – hip hinge – carrying -rotational exercises.
Cool methods: bodybuilding, weighted calisthenics, crossfit, girja-kettlebell, functional trainings.
Develop further your endurance with running, swimming, biking, rowing, if you want to excell in endurance sports.
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3. Level: Speed, explosiveness.
Cool methods: Sprints, olympic weightlifting, jumps, plyometrics..
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4. Level: Most of the specialised modern sport. BOOM!
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So I recommend everyone to spend more time building the basics. Or at least, inculde them as important and regular supplements.
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You will feel much better in any sport, if you are stronger, more mobile, durable and faster. You can enjoy it on a higher level and wont get tired, injured quickly.
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Of course you can skip 1-2 levels. You may enjoy one particular sport and you dont have years to develop everything to high level but it can have a price (performance plateau, injury).

Bonus tip for today
Set a goal to reach your first push-up/pull-up/handstand (push-up) or any other cool bodyweight exercise which looks far yet but achieveable challenge in a few month or 1-2 years.

SUNNYFITNESS TIPS #3
Move every day

We have a wonderfully sophisticated human body, capable of a huge variety of movements. For some reason, in the modern world we have forgotten this, or at least in modern lifestyles and activities we don’t take advantage of this magic. But we have become professionals at sitting still on a chair/car seat/sofa, and then we wonder when the parts start to rust.

The solution? Regular daily exercise! That doesn’t mean sweating in the gym every day. There are much simpler and more practical solutions!

  • Walk where you can
  • Morning – mid-day – evening – a few minutes of full-body, light exercises
  • Movement snacks: a few minutes of improvisational movement from a wide repertoire of natural movements 
  • Low-intensity, longer activities, chores around the house
  • 1 to 4 (or more, depending on how much you can fit in) strengthening or other developmental exercises per week
  • Regular practice of a favourite sport that you enjoy, that recharges you

Use it or lose it! Keep yourself fit to 100 years with daily, varied exercises!

Bonus Tip

Two of life’s big principles are constant learning and constant change. Do something new every day. For example, take a different route home. Warm up differently. Use different exercises.

SUNNYFITNESS TIPS #4
Warm up

The purpose of the warm up is…
To prepare the body physically and mentally for a higher level of exertion than everyday activities.
A proper warm-up will help you to perform at your best and reduce the risk of muscle and joint injuries.

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There are many different methods that works and many individual factors which influences how much and what type of warm up is neccessary.
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Use what works for you and be open to incorporating new elements and ditching outdated ones! You shouldn’t necessarily stick to a fixed routine, always pay attention to your body’s current condition and needs!
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Start with a full body general warmup, then do some specific warmup for your current sport activity.
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For light movement activities (almost) zero warmup may be ok.
For moderate-heavy workout 5-20 min warm up helps a lot to unlock your true performance potential and minimize injury risk.
For competitions it can be even longer! Elite athletes sometimes warmup for 1hour for a few second of top performance!
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Enjoy your movement practice! 

Bunus Tip
In the long run, aim for building a strong and flexible body, structural muscle balance. Teach your brain’s movement map a lot of various exercises, movement skills. Than you may need less warm up and will be more confident in any sport.


Check out my articleSecrets of the effective warm-up and the 5-10min videos on youtube!

SUNNYFITNESS TIPS #5
Show up regularly

This is one of the biggest secrets to achieve your fitness goals. Surprise?
I’ve never seen anybody reaching the next level without consistent trainings.
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Of course, it depends on your schedule if its 1-2-3 or 10 workout/week but give the regular trainings a high priority in your life and skip them only for strong reasons.
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The good news is that many fitness goals are achieveable and many training methods can work but only when you show up every week and work progressively.
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Challenging workout➡️ ‘Healthy’ stress➡️ Rest➡️ Adaptation➡️ Next level
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If the rest period is too short (training hard the same, every day, all year), it may lead to injuries, overtraining, lack of development.
If the rest is too long (skipping weeks), the adaptation will vanish and you can start again.

Bonus tip for today
You may feel a bit tired or unmotivated one day and want to skip the workout… Solution? The warm up trick!
Give yourself a chance with a 10-15 minute of warmup and you will be suprised how much more reserve is in your body for a cool and useful training session! After you may feel happier and winning the day.

SUNNYFITNESS TIPS #6
Breathe more effectively
(PART 1.)

  • Without food, you can survive for 1-2 months. Not so joyful, but it is possible.
  • Without water, you can only stay alive for a few days. You may see oases and mirages everywhere, but it is still possible.
  • Without oxygen, the brain suffers irreversible damage within minutes. The world record for breath retention is around 12 minutes, which has been made with years of practice.

If you compare those three basic “elements” of life, you may be wondering which one is more important?
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Oxygen is essential for the most economical energy production, the fat-burning in mitochondria. Learn to breathe effectively!
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Many people over breathe, they take in too much air. You may think that you will be better supplied with oxygen, but the opposite is true due to the body’s regulatory processes. If you over breathe, you expel the carbon dioxide, and the oxygen binding to hemoglobin becomes much worse, and less oxygen is eventually delivered to the cells.
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Check out the Buteyko breathing method. To keep it simple, most of the time, you should only breathe in your nose, avoiding mouth breathing, and slowly teaching yourself how to use less air.
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Of course, if we are doing high-intensity workouts, swimming, or in any case of emergency, we can use the mouth as well.
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Breathe less, breathe through your nose, shut your mouth whenever its possible.
/excerpt from the SunnyFitness book/

Bonus tip for today
Practice during the day some kind of breath retention. For example when sitting or walking hold in the air for 10-20-… sec then take a few normal breath and hold it in again for 10-20 sec. Repeat 10-20 times.

SUNNYFITNESS TIPS #7
Quality over quantity

Usually we can see in a gym or outdoor calisthenics park someone executing self- and public dangerous, pumping, kipping, half repetitions with horrible technique and too much weight.
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Youth, foolishness, lack of experience or long term thinking, time-peer-performance pressure, uncontrolled ego are the main reasons behind this phenonema.
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Low quality technique increases injury risk, can make the joints stiff, and the progress won’t be the best.
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Instead, do a bit fewer reps and sets, but they should be close to textbook quality movements. Pay attention to this even when you’re getting tired.
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Imagine a gymnast who is about to present his routine at the Olympic finals! The pros perform calmly, with an elegant posture, relaxed, yet brutally hard exercises.

Bonus tip
If you can no longer maintain the nice form, it’s time to end the set with that exercise. Decrease the resistance/progression level a little bit or do 1-2 less reps in the next set to keep the nice technique. If you have to decrease them more than 15-20%, consider terminating that exercise or the whole workout for that day because its no longer a beneficial training effect.

SUNNYFITNESS TIPS #8
Challenge yourself

Doing a workout ROUTINE with the same exercises, same amount, every day or week… can be OK for maintenance and feeling more alive after the movement.  Its still better then doing nothing or sitting on the sofa all day.
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However, if you like to see progress you should challenge yourself (a little bit) each time!
Its not about feeling destroyed every time, just a slow, step by step development with progressive overload.
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There are many ways to trigger the body for further adaptation and reaching the next level in fitness.
Play smart with volume, intensity, complexity, exercise selection, exercise tempo, rest periods, weekly-monthly periodization, etc.
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Routine is the enemy of progress, challenge yourself!

Bonus tip
From time to time, organize a maximal challenge for yourself! Go to competitions. Test your one-repetition maximum in some strength exercise. Sprint like a lion is chasing you.
Not recommended for a daily workout, rest after this tests for at least few days, or even weeks, after a full effort. Muscle fuel stores are replenished relatively quickly, but the nervous system and muscle micro-injuries need more time to regenerate.

SUNNYFITNESS TIPS #9
Become a generalist in movement

The anatomy and energy systems of the human body make us the most versatile species in the animal kingdom in terms of movement.
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We are not the best in any one genre. Cheetahs run faster but we do better in marathon running. Fish swim better but they have no chance on the land. Monkey’s climb better but probably they cant learn and show a nice gymnast ring routine.
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We are the “handymen”, able to achieve a high level of almost any movement.
We can be strong, fast, agile, persistent, flexible, skillful in various movement patterns, sports at the same time.
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Of course no one has the time to practice everything in one week which are possible for the human body. The goal is that they should all appear at some point, at some level throughout the life. At least monthly or yearly.
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For example, focus on a few conditioning factors (strenght, speed, endurance, flexibilty), movement skills or sports for a few months/years, then change for other ones.
At the same time you can always include in your warmup or on light workout days the other movement patterns, new exercises as well.
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If your goal is not to be super high level in any specific sports then a generalist training system should fit very well for you! It will never be boring and may be always exciting because of the new elements.

Bonus tip
Becoming a generalist in the movement will help to build a versatile, flexible neuronal connections in the nervous system as well through neoroplasticity, which can be beneficial for many life circumstances. Train with variety and become smarter!
Choose a few new movement skill every year and reach a good level in them. Try each year new sports you never made before. etc. 

SUNNYFITNESS TIPS #10
Support the recovery

Our body is a self-regulatory, highly adaptable biological masterpiece which can survive and recover from many stressors. Like a heavy workout. Especially when its more or less healthy and we give the optimal conditions.
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Even in suboptimal conditions (like lack of sleep, poor diet) it will find the way to recover but it may take more time than in case when we support it well.
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Its worth to support the recovery processes after heavy trainings. However it highly depends on the training frequency and intensity, type of workout, muscular microdamages, training age how much attention is enough and neccessary.
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Those who train only 1-3 times a week with day offs between and not pushing the limits on each workout, can be more lazy with the attention on recovery.
Those who train almost every day or 2-3 times a day, should focus on this much more.
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Key areas where you can enhance the recovery processes:
– Sleep: get enough duration and quality
– Sunlight during the day and evening darkness: for optimal circadian rhythm and hormones
– Hydration: water, raw foods, supporting mitochondrial function to produce more water internally
– Nutrition: eat enough protein and energy (fats and carbohydrates), minerals and vitamins from nutrient dense natural foods
– Follow a smart training program, avoid overtraining
– Disconnect from the main sport and do other sports or activites in life
– Breathing, relaxation, stress management, laugh
– Sunbathing, sauna, ice-baths, cold shower
– Foam rolling, massage
– Light movement activities, stretching, mobility exercises, walking
– Supplements if neccessary


Bonus tip
Make a research how the professional athletes take care about their recovery. Of course you may not need all their methods and be as strict, focused as they are, but  you can definiately learn something which you can implement in your life!

Read the #11-20 Workout Tips HERE!

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