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Blog The 4 Main Pillars to a Lasting Transformation in 2017



The 4 Main Pillars to a Lasting Transformation in 2017

  • by David O' Connor
  • January 12, 2017

That word is Thrown around a lot (Transformation), believe me, I know. But whatever that may mean for you – these 4 pillars will still be the main ingredients of it.

So it could be a higher level of Fitness /Performance for your Sport, it could be looking the best you’ve ever had, it could be losing a few pounds, toning up and getting back to a level of Fitness before the Kids came along – again, it’ll be different for everyone, but the principles will remain the same. So here’s what you need.


EVERYTHING leads back to the thoughts that ramble around in your head and how you use them. Yes a lot of people view this as sappy, airy fairy stuff, but they’re usually the people that b*tch and complain about everything & are just ignorant to being a bit more self aware.

If you’re telling yourself you ‘can’t’ do X, Y or Z or that ‘you’re not able for’ something or that you don’t have time, you don’t know how etc. etc. – You’ll get no where fast.

You NEED to be optimistic about what lies ahead for you when it comes to your Health & Fitness.

And that first starts in telling yourself you can do it…

Yes, that sounds Cheesy but you’d be amazed at how many people still limit themselves by simply saying, “I can’t”.

Once you know what you’re main overall Goal or Focus is, you need to reverse engineer it. That’s what goal setting is all about – Future Pacing what you want, focusing on the Positives of it all to keep you motivated, then reverse engineering the plan to get there. So what do you need to start doing?

  • Get onto a coach if you don’t know what you’re at?
  • Resistance Train a minimum of x3 times a week as a starting point in toning up/building muscle
  • Take baby steps with your Nutrition to make small changes that in turn reap big rewards (I.E: Fat Loss)

^^they’re the easy steps to lay out on paper, but is there other stuff you need to work on? Again, this all comes back to progression as a person.


If you’re someone who thinks Jumping over a few steps or running is going to get you in the shape you want – this should be a wake up call. Resistance training is a no brainer for Strength, longevity, health & looking better naked.

There’s a few fundamentals when it comes to lifting weights, and first comes the movements you do, if your training is structured around these ‘Human Fundamentals’ as we call them – you’re onto a winner:


And let’s make this clear, you’re NOT just ‘working out’ anymore.

[Tweet “You’re TRAINING for an end goal so don’t forget that.”]

Once you make that transition in your head – you start to get serious about it all too.

But then comes PROGRESSION, how do you know you’re actually progressing with your Training?

So for example you could pick a squat and you’re just starting out let’s say at 4 sets of 8 reps if you haven’t worked out a day in your life.

Session 1: You simply do bodyweight
Session 2: You add 5KG weight in a Goblet Squat Position
Session 3: You potentially add another 2.5-5 Kilos to that or more depending on your Technique & how the last session went.

You can KEEP repeating that process until your Dumbbell squatting up in the 20-30kilo range, then move onto a Bar on your back to add more weight. Again, progression. And that’s just a simple way to look at it. Most people would progress MUCH faster than that 😉


The Nutritional and Diet world when it comes to health and Fitness is a disgrace. In fact, it’s a fucking joke.

And the worst thing? People fall for it thinking it’s the magic bullet.

Now I won’t solve it in this post – but here’s some fundamentals Principles for you.

IF YOU LOSE, MAINTAIN OR GAIN WEIGHT – it will come back to one Fundamental Principle of ‘Energy Balance’ – Which means:

– If you burn off more Calories than you consume – (I.E: Eating Less, Burning More) You’ll lose weight. (You’re in an Energy Deficit)

– If you burn less calories than you consume (Eat more than you burn off) – You’ll Gain Weight (You’re in an Energy Surplus).

– If you burn around the same Calories as you’re consuming – You’ll Maintain your Weight.

Now wether you like the idea of counting calories of not, your body counts calories.

That half pack of Chocolate Digestives that you tell yourself you haven’t eaten or taken into account? Well your body knows 😉

So if you’re looking for Fat Loss (Losing Weight) you need to be in an Energy Deficit so there NEEDS to be some form of Calorie Control so you can achieve this. And this is why most diets work – they have you IN THAT DEFICIT.

But they teach you sweet fuck all. So you get pissed off the months afterwards when you ‘go back to normal’ and all of a sudden the weight starts coming back on.

(Image Courtesy of healthmag.gr)

Again you haven’t learned any principles, but instead just followed ‘a plan’, got the results (which is great at the time) but then go back to old ways again and start looking for the next shiny thing.

At Doc Fitness – we start this Calorie Deficit Process by going by hand sizes as a starting Point,

So if Men aim for:

– 2 Palm Sizes of Protein with Each Meal
– 2 Thumb sizes of healthy fats with Each Meal
– 1-2 Cupped Handful Sizes of Carbs with Each Meal
– 1-2 Fist Fuls of Veggies with Each Meal

And Ladies simply shoot for HALF of that – You’ll be eating in a Calorie Deficit (Provided you’re not knocking back a sneaky Pizza a few nights a week)

Then down the line, once our members KNOW why they’re doing this and have done in for a period of time, we move into deeper things like working out Calorie & Macronutrient Targets – but a topic for another day.


Life would be terrible without Moderation.

I personally, cannot live without Chocolate and I don’t expect anyone else to either 😉

So if someone wants to eat a bit of Ice Cream or a chocolate bar every day – they can.

As long as you FACTOR it into your Daily food intake and REMAIN in that Calorie Deficit, you’re all good.

Then If you want to get all up on your high horse about how ‘that’s bad for you’ – Show me how one chocolate bar is detrimental to your health. Because you won’t find it.


Accountability really is a missing link for a lot of people when it comes to Health & Fitness stuff.

Sure, we have Lads & Ladies that would progress just fine without us but the difference with them is the Results they most likely wouldn’t get on their own, the faster progress, the feeling of community and constantly growing WITHOUT all the added stress of guesswork when it comes to your training & Nutrition.

Personal Training IS a luxury at the end of the day, and I’m not going to sit here and say it isn’t, because it is and not everyone can afford 1-1 personal training.

Which again, as coaches, is another factor as to why we spend so much time into the ‘accountability’ side for our members, even though they may be in small and large group programs – we want to make sure they get the same attention, no matter what.

Yes it’s a LOT of work in the back end that no one sees – but it’s also why our members are so successful in their own Journeys.

Who’s keeping you on track?

Who are you checking in with?

Who do you turn to for advice or just when you need a kick up the arse?

Again – accountability is MASSIVE and there is different ways around it too..

  • Could be a Partner you Gym with
  • Could be someone you ‘compete’ with outside a gym setting like a running/walking app on your phone
  • It could be a coach checking in weekly
  • It could be a weekly weigh in/Monthly measurement taking or Monthly photos

You get the idea, different ways to keep you accountable, which is why we utilise all of these wherever suits our members 🙂


So that’s that really, what ended up being a short post on Facebook turned into a full blown blog. I do hope you’ve read this far to realise what lies ahead to a successful year for you when it comes to Health & Fitness.

There is others factors at play is like the actual specifics, but on the Macro level, this is what you need..

Then comes the Balance side of it all so you actually can ENJOY life to it’s fullest followed by consistently following through on what you said you would do. Hopefully there’s some takeaways there for you,

David 🙂


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David O' Connor
CEO | Head Coach
David's passion lies in coaching you through the easiest path to losing weight, toning up & getting back the confidence that's been hiding for a while. Head Coach & Head of Nutrition at Doc Fitness, if you don't find him there, he's probably training, sipping coffee writing Nutrition articles or playing Hurling for Ballinderreen.