The older I get, the more I realize that caring about how you might look to others is a pointless quest. Fitness is not about eliminating failure; it’s about learning to deal with it and move on.
Now, from the outside looking in, Adam Collard seems to have been blessed from birth. He’s 6’ 5”, has an enviable six-pack, and if his appearances on England’s version of Love Island and Celebs Go Dating, are anything to go buy, he’s almost beating hot girls off with a wooden stick. It was refreshing then, to learn that just like the rest of us, Adam Collard carries his own insecurities.
As a kid, he was overweight and unhappy, but he embarked on a journey that would not only give him the physique that he desired, but would also allow him to share his hard-earned wisdom with others. It’s for this reason that I found myself at “Sculpt Gym Ashington,” in Northumberland. It’s one of two gyms owned by the PT and television star, and his group fitness sessions are seriously catching on. I wanted to find out more, and that meant getting out of my own comfort zone once again.
“There’s a couple of things that wind us up about the TV, I’ve got a little chip on my shoulder, I can’t lie” says Collard in his typically warm Northern accent. “One of them is the (misconception that) the gym started before Love Island, everyone thinks that I went on the TV the first time and then got the gym after. The gym was already established. I was a PT from eighteen years old. I went on Love Island when I was twenty-two, but (my) gym had already been open for a year.”
Indeed, Collard’s love of fitness runs deeper than simply wanting to look hench on reality television. “Just like a lot of people out there, I was not happy with the way I looked,” he shares. “Sixteen was the minimum age back in my day when you could get a gym membership, so me and my best friend signed up. We didn’t really have a routine. We did a lot of reading forums like [Muscle & Fitness], got a routine off there, and fell in love with all of the early days YouTubers Steve Cook, Christian Guzman, Greg Plitt. Legends.”
Now running his own online academy, Collard is still very much present in his own gyms. He knows his members by name and his gyms have a positive, family atmosphere. And, with the experts at Primal Strength helping him to realize his dream of constructing the best fitness environments possible, I found myself in a great space to workout.
“I would say that the Primal side of it (putting together a gym), they helped me understand the customer journey … how can we try and make this as exclusive and premium feel as possible, at a fraction of the (expected membership) price.” The team at Primal Strength have certainly helped Collard to create a dynamic space with their expert training and top-notch strength and cardio equipment. I couldn’t wait to try it out. “We’re gonna do a bit of a functional fitness session, HYROX style,” explains Collard. “Weights at cardio at speed.” Perhaps my enthusiasm was a bit naïve. But God loves a trier!
What is HYROX?
Essentially, HYROX is fitness racing and Adam Collard is a keen competitor. Earlier this year, he placed second in a Manchester, England, event, along with his teammate Jade Skillen in the mixed doubles. HYROX combines running and functional workouts. The rules require participants to run 1km, followed by 1 functional workout, repeated eight times. HYROX is contested all over the globe and has a world championship at the end of each season.
What is EMOM?
EMOM stands for “Every Minute On the Minute” and is essentially interval training. In this workout we will be doing an E3MOM. That means the exercise intervals are three-minutes rather than one. At the completion of each exercise, the remainder of the three minutes (if there is any remaining time, that is!) can be taken as rest before starting the next exercise.
Adam Collard’s HYROX inspired E3MOM Workout
- 500m Run
- 15 Burpees
- 20 Dumbbell Snatches
- 500m SkiErg
- 20 Kettlebell DLs
- Farmers Walks
- 16 Reverse Lunges
- 250m Row
This workout will last 15 minutes. As you progress your fitness level, you can repeat it to workout for 30 mins, 45 mins, and so on.
What I learned training with Adam Collard
As an elite athlete and fitness competitor, Collard is passionate about training, and his energy is infectious. So much so that for a moment, I thought I might even be able to compete with him. Of course, reality soon set in, but for those of us that are new to this style of intense training, the PT in him really came out to help drive me forward. While at times I felt like I couldn’t go on, Collard gave me great encouragement, illustrating the value of group training. He also suggested some seriously welcome adaptations, such as working with my bodyweight if the kettlebells became too heavy. While I didn’t think I would complete a second round, Collard got me through it, and while I was by no means the most graceful athlete on the gym floor, I can say that I gave it my all, and isn’t that what fitness is really all about? Interval training improves stamina, increases strength, burns fat, keeps your heart healthy, and is great for mental health. It certainly works up a sweat and tests your mettle, but thanks to Adam Collard, I’m hooked.