Strong & Explosive with Creatine


Creatine is one of the few supplements that has a lot of cold hard evidence to back up what it does. Creatine is a naturally high energy molecule in the body that is used in the short duration high intensity phosphocreatine system. This system, also called the ATP-PC system fuels short bursts of energy with intracellular stores of creatine when the need can’t be met with oxygen. The creatine molecule is stored in the muscle and has high energy phosphate bonds. It it the detachment of the phosphate bonds that releases energy.


High intensity intervals just got easier.

Meat, fish and eggs can provide some creatine in the food form, however real effects are best gained with creatine powder. Supplementing with creatine is most common among strength and power trainees. If your training demands short burst of all out intensity, taking creatine is proven to help you recover faster from each intense bout and go hard for the next one. Although some of the effect will lessen when you stop taking creatine many of the benefits are lasting. The biggest plus is that you can push harder, you can build more muscle and train more frequently.


Creatine is water soluble and mixes easily with most protein powders.

Creatine can be taken in cycles or can be loaded to build up stores in the muscles. Cycling creatine refers to taking a set dose for a period of time and followed by stopping the dose. To load creatine, slightly higher doses are taken each day. When taking creatine, you must ensure you stay well hydrated. Creatine is stored with water in the muscle, so naturally you will need to consume more water. To prevent stomach issues, creatine is best taken with meal and dissolved in a glass of water.

One of the newer findings on creatine is that it has positive effects on mental clarity and decision making. This effect is especially prominent in older adults. Creatine is stored in all types of body cells and can provide energy during conditions of stress or low oxygen. It is by this mechanism that creatine supports all body cells, not just the muscle!

Greenwood, M., Farris, J., Kreider, R., Greenwood, L., & Byars, A. (2000). Creatine supplementation patterns and perceived effects in select division I collegiate athletes. Clinical Journal of Sport Medicine, 10(3), 191-194.

Persky, A. M., Brazeau, G. A., & Hochhaus, G. (2003). Pharmacokinetics of the dietary supplement creatine. Clinical pharmacokinetics, 42(6), 557-574.

Rawson, E. S., & Venezia, A. C. (2011). Use of creatine in the elderly and evidence for effects on cognitive function in young and old. Amino Acids, 40(5), 1349-1362.

NEW Facility & NEW Classes!

New Edge Fitness Inc. private training facility is NOW OPEN! NEW facility means NEW classes.

Are you asking yourself what this bootcamp is about?
Are you asking yourself what is “New Edge Fitness” about?
Are you curious if you can even make it through these bootcamps?

We are excited to welcome you to the “New Edge” Family where we are committed to helping people achieve their optimal level of health and fitness. Our bootcamps are designed to increase the longevity of your life and equip you with the strength to conquer all of your life challenges. Our coaches designed 6 classes throughout the week to accommodate all levels of fitness and they will encourage you to push past your limitations.

Get in touch with us to receive your complimentary class pass by emailing us at

We are looking forward to the day you walk through our doors, and in the words of the legend himself “earn your respect not only from us, but yourself” – Ibby Ali

Contact us at (778)833-2208 to book your COMPLIMENTARY 30min Personal Training consultation or email us at to receive your complimentary Bootcamp pass. Time to train the New Edge way!

Working Out vs. Training

This week, as New Edge begins at the new facility we look at the difference between working out and training. If you had a chance to join in one of the opening day bootcamps I hope you can feel your legs again. If not, you missed out, but there will be much more of that to come!

Training is here defined as structured exercise that is varied progressively with the intent of achieving a specific outcome. Training programs follow some type of periodization. This could be linear, undulating or non-linear periodization. The volume and intensity of the training change over the training cycle to bring up weak areas and maintain overall strength. Training begins with higher volume, low intensity work to reinforce technique. Once technique is improved to some level, the intensity of training increases. Finally the volume and technique can be increased together to peak the athlete for a max performance. This is what one of my coaches call “shock week”. Recovery is always a big consideration during the peaking phase of training.


Working out is defined as physical movement that raises the heart rate and uses the skeletal muscles. Structure and progression are not emphasized and the activities tend to be chosen arbitrarily. High intensity tasks like flipping tires, battle ropes and tire slams come to mind. These exercises are fun, but doing this mix everyday will not make you better at much. Working out can achieve many great things and it’s worth doing just for the social element of hanging out with like minded people. Other benefits include mental clarity, stress reduction, cardiovascular fitness and strength and muscle gain in a complete beginner.


Both working out and training are important for lifters and athletes. If you have a specific outcome in mind, then training will be the biggest part of what you do in the gym. Sure, it will not look impressive day to day, but over time the foundation you build by working progressively will be indestructible. If you want to stay healthy and don’t have a something to train for, working out is a good way to maintain your fitness, however good results don’t happen by accident. Choosing a few exercises to do each day at random will not get improvements a fast as a well designed training program. Try something new and decide what type of training is best for getting to where you want to get. See you all in the gym!

Brown, J. (2002). Training needs assessment: A must for developing an effective training program. Public Personnel Management, 31(4), 569-578.

Izquierdo, M., Häkkinen, K., Ibanez, J., Garrues, M., Anton, A., Zuniga, A., … & Gorostiaga, E. M. (2001). Effects of strength training on muscle power and serum hormones in middle-aged and older men. Journal of applied physiology, 90(4), 1497-1507.

Penedo, F. J., & Dahn, J. R. (2005). Exercise and well-being: a review of mental and physical health benefits associated with physical activity.Current opinion in psychiatry, 18(2), 189-193.


Overhead Squats


Overhead squats are one of my favorite lifts. I love the feeling of locking out under and heavy weight and then driving it up with my legs. I also love using them to teach correct squat form. The overhead squat is great at keeping a lifter honest about their midsection strength, hip flexibility and shoulder stability. Much can be learned about how someone moves by watching how they tackle the overhead squat. Today we look at midsection stability in the overhead squat!

The overhead squat is excellent for training pelvic position and control in the back and abdominal muscles. As can be seen in the figure below the muscles of the back, abs, hips and legs create opposing forces in the pelvis and spine. Effective squatting must train you how to balance these forces and keep the pelvis and spine in a neutral position.


A simplified version of the muscular forces that contribute to anterior and posterior pelvic tilt.

To train the overhead squat begin with a dowel. Use weight by progressing slowly, once you have the technique mastered with the dowel. It is completely normal if it feels difficult at first to reach the depth you are used to squatting to. Most importantly, have a coach or other experienced lifter watch and make sure you spine position is neutral when you begin and that it doesn’t change from this position as you squat.


A beautiful example of neutral spine and pelvis position with the bar overhead.

Think of staying tight under the bar. Lock your midsection in place and control it by not letting anything go loose until you have put the bar down. Next week we dig deeper into overhead squats and look at hip flexibility and shoulder stability in this lift. Happy squatting!

Anderson, K., & Behm, D. G. (2005). Trunk muscle activity increases with unstable squat movements. Canadian Journal of Applied Physiology, 30(1), 33-45.

Staugaard-Jones, J.A. (2012). The Vital Psoas Muscle: Connecting Physical, Emotional, and Spiritual Well-Being. North Atlantic Books

Simple HIIT


One of the most simple HIIT formats is 30 seconds on and 1 minutes off. Because you have a minute to let your body recover, those 30 seconds need to push you to the edge of discomfort. In this format hiit lasts a maximum of 15 minutes. That doesn’t seem like much, but even maintaining high intensity for this long is difficult.

Sustainable training should be high on your list of values in training. It’s not worth going hard whenever you feel like you need to sweat more or get some frustration out. Exercises for interval training should be full body, but basic in nature. When choosing exercises for hiit, simple is better. This is not the time to do technique work for Olympic lifts or any other lift you haven’t mastered. Even with mastery of barbell and Kettlebells, bodyweight exercises are hard choices to beat. If you can’t do the correctly at a high speed for the 30 second interval, choose something else.


HIIT challenges are ranked from easy to advanced.


30 seconds bodyweight squats
60 seconds speed walking on treadmill


30 seconds kettlebell swing
60 seconds hill walk on treadmill


30 seconds hill sprint
60 seconds hill walk on treadmill

Although these challenges seem basic, they train energy system efficiency and ensure that proper mechanics can be used. Once these are mastered, different bodyweight, kettlebell and dumbbell exercises can be stubbed in! Next week we look at common gym injuries and how to prevent them from keeping you from reaching your goals. Happy new year!


Gibala, M. J., & McGee, S. L. (2008). Metabolic adaptations to short-term high-intensity interval training: a little pain for a lot of gain?. Exercise and sport sciences reviews, 36(2), 58-63.

Laursen, P. B., & Jenkins, D. G. (2002). The scientific basis for high-intensity interval training. Sports Medicine, 32(1), 53-73.

Weston, A. R., Myburgh, K. H., Lindsay, F. H., Dennis, S. C., Noakes, T. D., & Hawley, J. A. (1996). Skeletal muscle buffering capacity and endurance performance after high-intensity interval training by well-trained cyclists. European journal of applied physiology and occupational physiology, 75(1), 7-13.


Need an extra little push before you indulge over the holidays? New Edge Fitness will be offering COMPLIMENTARY Bootcamps Tuesday December 15 and Thursday December 17 at 10:30am. If you’ve never trained with us…now is your chance!

Email or call (778)998-6586 to reserve your spot!

What’s Your Warmup?

Last week I attended the world weightlifting championships, where I got to watch and learn from the best lifters in the world. Although weightlifting is a specialized sport, there is no better sport to look to when it comes to training in the gym. In weightlifting, adding more weight to the bar must be earned by demonstrating coordination, control and power with a lesser weight.warmup

Perfection of movement patterns is the focus before a lifter is allowed to train with added weight. Weightlifting is a sport that uses every muscle in the body. For optimal speed and power all muscles need to be recruited very quickly. This is where warm-up becomes important. Weightlifters in the championship that did not have adequate time to warm-up were often unable to make lifts that were easy for their competitors. These lifters were quickly eliminated from the competition.


One of the things that made the best teams of weightlifters stand out was their warm-up routine. Warm-up that include dynamic stretching and practice the movement patterns are most ideal when it comes for preparing for strength training and power type exercise. Here are some of my favorites:

Dynamic hip flexor stretch:

This one is good to setting pelvic position in neutral and activating the glutes. Move forward and backward or lift and lower the back leg to add movement to this. Perform 2 sets of 10 forward and back and 2 sets of 10 lifts up and down.

warmup4Thoracic reach and twist:

In half kneeling, plant one hand on the floor and reach the other hand up to touch the sky. Then, reach under and through the opposite arm and leg. This warms up the shoulders and the upper back area. Do this at a moderate pace and go faster as you desire. Do 1 set of 5 per side.

warmup6Walkout to plank:

Bend from the hip to stretch the hamstrings and activate the quads. Hands walk out to get into plank position. Hands can be placed further out if the midsection is strong. Hands walk back in towards the feet. Stand up to finish and add a squat with hands reached overhead. Aim to keep your torso vertical and abs engaged. Perform 2 sets of 5 walkouts.

warmup7 warmup8


Chaouachi, A., Castagna, C., Chtara, M., Brughelli, M., Turki, O., Galy, O. & Behm, D. G. (2010). Effect of warm-ups involving static or dynamic stretching on agility, sprinting, and jumping performance in trained individuals.The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research, 24(8), 2001-2011.

McMillian, D. J., Moore, J. H., Hatler, B. S., & Taylor, D. C. (2006). Dynamic vs. static-stretching warm up: the effect on power and agility performance. The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research, 20(3), 492-499.

Young, W. B., & Behm, D. G. (2002). Should Static Stretching Be Used During a Warm-Up for Strength and Power Activities?. Strength & Conditioning Journal, 24(6), 33-37.

New Edge Conditioning at Public Myth

new edge conditioning

Our trainer Robin Ball will be teaching at Public Myth Kitslano on West 4th next week!

When: Wednesday November 18, 2015.
Time: 6:15-7:15pm
Where: 2005 W 4th Ave; Vancouver, BC; V6J 1N3

You ready to kick it New Edge style? You think you can hang? Be sure to RSVP on the Facebook event page. Regardless…she’ll find a way to squeeze you in.

Facebook Event:
Public Myth: