ALONG WITH the smart phone revolution came the birth of the app. Nowadays we use them for everything from gaming and banking to music and editing photos but now, especially with the New Year in full swing, it’s all about fitness apps and UK model David Gandy is getting in on the action.
Following the success of his first app dedicated to men’s style, the 30 year-old has designed and developed a new one dedicated to helping users achieve their fitness goals, and the timing couldn’t be better.
Last year a report issued by the American Heart Association found that people find it easier to commit to fitness goals when they use electronic devices and even if you don’t end up with a body like Gandy’s, the app will certainly equip with you all of the tools you’ll need to get in shape this year.
City A.M. caught up with him recently to find out what inspired him to create the new app and how he keeps fit.
Why have you decided to launch a fitness app?
Demand really. I constantly get asked questions about staying in shape and my physique. Questions vary from how much I train and what exercises I do, to how many days a week I work out. I’ve even had personal trainers in gyms ask to train with me so I decided to share everything I’ve learnt from the last 10 years of training so that people who want to get into shape, no matter what level of fitness they’re at, can get advice that is tailored for them and genuinely works.
How difficult are the exercises and what level do you need to be to get started?
There are 3 body indexes to choose from: Lean, developed by personal trainer to the stars Natalie Bomgren from Bodyism, which is based around cardio type exercises; Cut, which includes super sets; and Bulk, which covers free weight exercises. With difficulty, it really depends on the body type you want to aim for. The app is developed to allow you to choose.
Can your app help guys achieve your physique?
Change is in the hands of the individual, as it takes commitment, but I know first hand that the programmes developed for the app work, as I use them myself. For anyone training with the app two to four times a week and maintaining a good diet, I would expect them to see a large improvement within a month, which is a great motivator. I’ve been training for many years. Looking after my body is part of my job and I work at it in the same way that people do in any profession. I’ve done it using these techniques and exercises so if someone has a goal and is dedicated, it’s possible. I would like to say it was easy, but it does take commitment.
How often do you work out?
If I’m in training for a commercial or campaign where my body is going to be seen, then five times a week otherwise, I train two to four times a week with each session lasting 45 minutes to an hour.
What is the best piece of training advice you can give or have been given?
My advice is, firstly, to constantly mix up and change your workout. You have to shock the body, as it adapts to the same exercises very quickly so you lose the benefit of doing them. Also, don’t constantly try to push maximum amount of weight. I’ve found better progress using slightly lighter weights, keeping a good form and increasing the reps.
What is the best nutritional advice you can offer?
While training, make sure to eat a lot of protein, especially an hour after working out. It helps the muscles to recover and grow. Aside from that, I would advise people to stay away from white processed foods like white bread, pasta and biscuits. Try and opt for whole grain options.
Do you have any shortcut tips on keeping in shape, how to burn fat quicker and build muscle?
1. Eating fats isn’t always bad. A lot of fats and oils in fish are beneficial. It’s just saturated fat that you want to try and keep as low as possible.
2. The more you work out the quicker your metabolism will become, so that even on a day off your body will continue to burn calories and fat quicker.
3. Drinking is another area that is hugely calorific. I love my drink as much as any guy does but I stick to clean spirits. Beer has huge amounts of calories and the weight will go straight to your stomach, hence the beer belly. Straight vodka on ice with lime or wine are better alternatives.
What advice would you give to someone about to start a fitness regime?
Work out what you want to achieve before you start and give yourself goals. Having a realistic target to aim for works much better than simply following a training programme. Maybe take a picture of your body when you start and then again after a month. It’s surprising how much your body changes without you noticing, so being able to see how far you’ve come and what results you've generated is a great motivator.
For those people who find the gym boring, make sure to constantly change your work out. If you don’t like a certain exercise, don’t do it. Replace it with something you prefer
What’s the most hardcore exercise included in the app and why?
Most people won’t be able to attempt the triple clap press up. It takes a large amount of explosive power in your chest so it’s definitely one for people who are already enjoying training and have a certain strength and ability. When you do crack it, you do feel quite proud. The standing ab roll is another hard one but is great for improving and defining your abs.
The circuits in the “lean” section and the super sets require a good level of cardio fitness and are easier for lighter people. I’m 15 stone so can find cardio based training quite hard.
What's your biggest training regret/training achievement?
My biggest training regret is doing the wrong exercises for years, but until you unlock those that do work for you, you don’t know any better. That’s another reason I wanted to create the app – to save people time and energy doing programmes that don’t deliver.
My biggest achievement was when I finally worked out what works for me and my body type. This has taken a lot of trial and error, but I have narrowed down what benefits me and gets me in the best shape in the shortest possible time from the exercises and techniques in the app.
For those who are time short, what advice would you give to keeping a balanced health, fitness and training routine.
We all live busy lives but you don’t have to spend hours in the gym to get results. 45 minutes is an adequate amount of time to see results if you’re doing the right exercises. Something is always better than nothing.
On the app we have built an express section, perfect for people with limited free time. You enter the time you have to spare, the body parts you want to train, and the app will calculate a routine for you based on those results.
The David Gandy Fitness and Training App is available now from the iTunes App Store priced £2.99.