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Archive for the ‘Blog’ Category

Tom Godwin in PT Magazine

Tuesday, September 16th, 2014

As some of you are aware I am now writing a regular column in the industry leading magazine for personal trainers, PT Magazine. I thought even though these articles are aimed at personal trainers that a number of you out there may find them interesting!

Please share and ask any questions you may have!




Working in fitness talk at MMU

Wednesday, May 21st, 2014

Manchester Metropolitan University

As a proud Alumni and current student (adding a second degree) I have always been happy to help out the university, its students and staff.  At the beginning of this year I was approached to see how I could help the careers service, particularly at the Crewe site to help students on sports and exercise related degree programmes to prepare for the inevitable day when they have to start work for real.

On the 9th May 2014 I had the massive honour of giving a talk to some students at Manchester Metropolitan University, the subject was Working in the Fitness Industry.  It was great to interact with the students and members of staff who attended and help them to better understand what working in the fitness industry was all about.  The key one being dispelling some of the myths that surround the word ‘personal trainer’.

The talk covered a number of subjects but started off with a bit of my history and some stories of the wide and varied jobs that I had held within the fitness industry.  The talk then moved onto any analysis of the fitness industry and the various job roles open to graduates.  Finally we discussed the range of training that was available to graduates and how this can help them find a job that suits their personal circumstances.

I has a great day at the Crewe site and look forward to this talk being a regular fixture on the careers calendar. As usual if you have any questions about how to get into the fitness industry or anything in general please feel free to comment, e-mail or social media me!



Become a personal trainer

Friday, May 9th, 2014

As you are all aware I am an avid fan of social media, oh and writing… Over the last few years as I have become more widely known in the fitness industry through my regular columns in PT Magazine, REPs Journal and many other industry publications.  I often get sent questions from those who are already working as personal trainers and also those who would like to get into the industry.

So I thought I would pop a post up here to answer the most common question I get…’How do I become a Personal Trainer?’

It is really a two step process:-

Get the training

For the last 5 years I have been involved in the training of personal trainers as an tutor/assessor/IQA and course writer/developer.  This allows me to have a detailed insight into the training of personal trainers.  In my experience there are a number of things to consider when looking at training, and finding the right course for you.

Initially you need to make sure that any training provider you are looking to use is REPs approved.  What that means is that your course has been recognised by The Register of Exercise Professionals, ensuring that the course meets the minimum industry standards set out by Skills Active, is transferable (now across most of the world) and will be recognised by employers.  It is easy to spot REPs approved courses by looking for the REPs logo on the literature of a training provider.  For more information about REPs and what they do have a look at their site here.

You then want to make sure that the training company is well recognised and experienced in the delivery of the qualifications that you are looking to get.  You should look into the length of time that the company has been operating and check things such as social media and try and interact with existing and past students and find out their experiences.

A key aspect of your enjoyment of the course is the person who will be teaching you, they can make or break a course.  If possible you should try and meet the tutor before enrolment, this can normally be arranged by contacting the training provider or by attending open events at the training venue.  This will also give you a chance to ask any questions you may have fact to face with a representative of the training company.

As a personal trainer the minimum qualification level that you will need is a level 3 personal trainer qualification, this allows you to work in a gym as a personal trainer or to work on a freelance basis for yourself.  Many of the training providers also offer a wide range of additional qualifications as part of training bundles to allow you to work with a wide range of clients.  The qualifications you chose should be considered carefully as you want to make sure that you get the right qualifications for the specific job role you are seeking to get after you have completed your course.


Get employment

You also need to know a little bit about the various job roles in the industry, I will be doing a short article on the subject over at my blog on for any of you that might be interested.  This should be up in the next few weeks, when it is I will post a link here!  But in shot the fitness and wellbeing industry is growing and through a recession has seen a sudden spurt with new gyms opening up around the country.  There is also still a massive demand for personal trainers, and most importantly the results that they can get clients.

As many of you know for the past 5 years I have been teaching new Personal Trainers and Fitness Instructors, I have worked for a number of companies but the one that I tend to recommend due to the fact that they tick all the boxes on the points mentioned above is Fitness Industry Education (, they are well worth a look if you are interested in training to become a personal trainer.

As usual if you have any questions or would like to chat about the industry, your training or anything really do give me a shout!


Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 31st, 2013

Hi Guys,

Hope you are all having an awesome new year and that 2014 is a happy and healthy one for you and all your family!

Tom and the Foresight Team

Happy Christmas

Wednesday, December 25th, 2013

Hi Guys,

Just a quick post to say Happy Christmas, hope your all having an awesome day and looking forward to a fit, healthy and happy New Year!

Happy Christmas

Tom and all the Foresight Team!

What is creatine?

Thursday, September 12th, 2013

Hi All

This time we are going to be looking at creatine, this is one of the most widely used supplements in gyms and has a wealth of research behind it.

Creatine is a protein that is produced within the body, but can also be eaten in meat and fish or taken as a supplement.  As a supplement it is found as a single product or as part of a pre/post workout product.

Creatine is used as a backup fuel source for our bodies, and allows us to have a source of phosphate to keep up with energy demands.  Its use is ideal in training where you are taking par in short periods of all out effort with minimal recovery periods.

Its use is also associated with minimization of post exercise muscle breakdown.  For the above reasons it has become a very popular supplement with gym goers, especially those involved in high intensity exercise, especially resistance based.  There is limited evidence of creatine’s effectiveness in endurance sports.

Many people targeting hypertrophy (muscular size) also use creatine as it draws water into the muscle giving the appearance of a larger amount of muscle tissue.

An average person takes in 1g of creatine a day from the food they eat and produces another 1g within the body.  This makes enough to keep our creatine stores around 40% full.   The best way to top these stores up is via supplementation of around 3g per day (any more that 5g will be excreted).  The ideal time to take creatine is post workout, as it draws water into your digestive system taking it prior to exercise can impede performance.

A key point is to ensure that you fully dissolve all the creatine in a liquid before drinking, there should be no visible signs of the power when drinking.


Fitness and the Martial Arts

Wednesday, September 4th, 2013

This week I have the great honour to publish a guest post by a good friend of mine Lun Lok, Lun has been involved in a number of different martial arts and is embarking on a journey into fitness.  Lun is a guy who really knows his stuff and has written a short post on the importance of fitness in the martial arts.  I hope you enjoy the article and feel free to comment and share!  Also do have a look at Lun’s amazing Martial Arts Blog.

Martial Arts: Fitness is not just about kicking and punching by Katagulong Guro Lun Lok, BSc(Hons)

There are indeed many ways of getting fit, and fitness aims are not limited to or defined by gaining muscle, kicking higher or running faster. Training in martial arts, as is widely known and accepted, gives you programme of fitness not just lasting on one of those special tailor-made 6 week crash courses, but actually for life. Through my own research, I have found that martial arts can not only give you a healthy social life, but also get you mentally fit.

I have asked many great martial artists what it is that keeps them going in their chosen styles. I have had responses like:

“….given me a life worth living and a way of life much more than just simply a hobby or interest”.

“…I have gained so much from martial arts on a physical and mental perspective.”

“A place that I can return to anytime I want. A place to meditate, remember, laugh, reflect, learn from, apply all of the lessons to life. Martial Arts has given me a never-ending journey, a ride that I will always be on….”

“It also gives a sense of belonging, a part of a family as no matter the style or discipline we are all drawn together”.

“Martial Arts caused me to awaken to life. With this came a much-needed sense of personal power, coordination (getting in touch with my body), confidence (discovering who I really am), and a passion and direction to help others experience the same.”

You know what? It’s true. I will never stop doing something related to the arts. I am currently studying Tai Chi (Sun Style and Chen Style), not because I am older but because I still love the arts. Never say never,though.  I might well venture back into an MMA class one day. The physical fitness benefits gained in such a class are tremendous. But the main goal, whatever art you do, is daily practice. It’s a strange thing really. You know when you visit a gym and see those people chatting, standing around the machines or hogging the weights…you can’t do that in a martial arts class.  Doing that in the gym gets you nowhere, but just try that in a martial arts gym, and your fingers will get burned.

From the statements given, what can you deduce from the first one? Let’s discuss: “A life worth living”. Simply, martial arts saved this guy from self-destruction. Enough said. What do you think about the second statement? This person is rich! Not financially, but look at what he says.  He has benefited immensely, both physically and mentally.  The final 3 statements are self-explanatory. Read into the last one and you can tell that this person has gained in a mental sense too.

Martial arts training will introduce you to a wealth of different exercises that you may not see in other sporting endeavours. There will obviously be some cross-over, and when I was asked to write this short essay, I was thinking about the exercises involved. I thought about things like hindu squats to really give your quadriceps a burn and your lungs pumping hard, (try 50 or more) crocodile press ups with your hands in the position like a crocodile has his legs, star jumps, bunny hops and other light warm-up exercises. But really there would be little point in writing about such exercises. The benefits from these movements are well-documented in any exercise magazine or website. It’s the number of exercises and the knowledge gained that helps you as you must focus and concentrate on the task, and get fitter at the same time. Go back to the guy who made the statement about a life worth living. It’s the positive vibes gained from martial arts exercise that helped him. With martial arts, he was able to reframe his life. That’s important, very very important. If you want the how-it-all-works-biochemical-and-physiological-science about it all, please be directed to Google, and type exercise science, myosin, ATP, Krebs Cycle, muscle spindles and proprioceptors. You could write volumes on all of that and then new research comes along to give you more or correct you at the same time. I will give you one set of exercises to follow though. The upshot of all martial arts training from a physical fitness point of view is that you can gain through daily practice a way to:

  1. Gain flexibility
  2. Gain co-ordination
  3. Gain stamina and endurance – aerobic fitness
  4. Gain focus – be mentally prepared
  5. Get stronger
  6. Gain respect and confidence
  7. Gain methods of defending yourself
  8. Gain energy and power
  9. Improve your health overall

There are obviously more, but once you start, you embellish your own canvas.

Here is the “TON”.  You could actually rename it “PAIN” instead. You won’t forget it in a hurry, and you won’t need any of those fitness DVDs from those late night TV infomercials or pay £99.99, plus postage for anything…

3 sets, 10 reps each of

  1. burpees
  2. shoulder-width push-ups
  3. frog sit-ups
  4. squat springs
  5. narrow-grip push-ups
  6. crunches
  7. tuck jumps
  8. wide-grip push-ups
  9. hand over knee sit-ups
  10. squat thrusts

To wrap up then, I think the mental attributes that you develop in martial arts or on par, if not higher than the physical benefits. Unfortunately as we age, the body slows down with reduced hormone production, but the brain keeps going a little longer. However, as an all-round endeavour to improve your life on various levels, martial arts is, in my humble opinion, number 1. Don’t forget there are internal martial arts as well as external, where you build up your qi, but that is a subject on an even higher level. Whatever the case, all structured exercise is king, and martial arts gives you that and much more.

Thanks for reading this short article.

What is taurine?

Friday, August 16th, 2013

Hi All

This time we are going to be looking at taurine.

Taurine is a non-essential amino acid produced naturally within the body. It is often found in various energy drinks, but it’s also found in fish, meat, eggs, and milk, as well as many creatine and protein products.

This supplement is normally used as an energy aid (due to its effect on nervous and brain function), with producers claiming it helps to improve energy levels.  When this is looked at in terms of energy drinks, the greatest part of the drink that aids performance is he caffeine rather than the taurine.

It is also used as part of protein based products to help to reduce the breakdown of muscle tissue and to aid recovery.  This has had limited research to support its claims.


British Track Team take to the Track!

Monday, July 1st, 2013

The British Track Team verses an Alfa Rameo, not quite on our usual track but fun anyway!

Whey Protein: Isolate, Concentrate or Hydrolysed?

Friday, June 14th, 2013

I often get asked about the key differences between using whey isolate or whey concentrate, or is there something even better? So I thought a short article on the subject may be useful to you guys out there.  So here it is:-


Whey Concentrate

Whey concentrate is one of the most basic forms of protein, and tends to be a cheaper method of supplementing protein into your diet.  It can be used both pre and post workout, as well as to supplement protein intake throughout the day.  Due to the lower cost of whey concentrate it tends to work out cheaper per serving.  However some people tend to have more of a difficult time digesting the stuff and can end up feeling bloated and gassy.

Whey concentrate tends to be anywhere between 34-80% protein (even if the label says 100% whey protein), so make sure you have a good read of that nutritional information on the back of the packet and make sure that percentage figure is talking about the contents not just the source of the protein used.

Whey Isolate

Whey isolate tends to be purer, as such also a little more expensive.  As the molecules tend to be a little bit smaller these products tend to mix a little better.  With very low levels of fat and lactose they also tend to be good for those who are watching fat intake, also for those who are lactose sensitive.  They also tend to be absorbed very quickly making them perfect for pre and post workout.  Whey Protein Isolate contains 87% to 95% protein.


Hydrolysed Whey

This is protein that has been  hydrolyzed, producing small chains of amino acids called peptides. Several studies have shown that protein hydrolysates containing mostly dipeptides and tripeptides.  These are absorbed very rapidly than free amino acids.  These whey hydrolystate’s tend to be the most expensive but due to the fast absorption rates  and the growing evidence that they have a greater anabolic effect, they really are the best of the best.

Please feel free to comment, and ask questions below!