Paul Macgregor
VICTORY: Paul (right)

By Paul MacGregor

HI and welcome to my monthly fitness and health column.  This month I am going slightly off base to give an example of what you can achieve with the right training, correct eating and a good mental attitude.

 This month I am going slightly off base to give an example of what you can achieve with the right training, correct eating and a good mental attitude.

Attitude is something that is overlooked by fitness professionals, because it is assumed that you have the correct mindset as you have chosen your goals and have starting doing something about it, a pitfall that will lead to failure which could have been so easily avoided. Motivation and constant re-enforcement of the reasons why, with realistic expectations can make sure that the right mental attitude is maintained.

Attitude is one of the very basic building blocks of having a healthy lifestyle and if you don’t believe you won’t live it. Success comes from within, and although we can help you as stated before, you have to commit and believe to be able to achieve your goals.

For those in the know, I have been training Kayley Mifsud, Miss Gibraltar, to complete her 10 Med Steps challenge, raising money for Calpe House. I have worked with professional athletes, who you know have the drive and motivation and who will follow your instructions. When working with beauty Queens, you don’t quite have that understanding especially when it is an event like a 10 Med step challenge.

We worked out the programme in February and have had weekly get together sessions with Kayley having plenty of homework to be getting on with. Even through illness and a very busy schedule she came through and completed the event on May Day. There was never ever any certainty that she would complete it, even on the 10 ascents something could have gone wrong, but my doubts were never her doubts, and in just under 10 hours, she was at the top of the Rock for the 10th time!

I don’t think she ever doubted it, she stuck to the plan, stuck to the nutrition and hydration and just got on with it. Not only did she and boyfriend Dean Chipolina, who was a rock for Kayley on the day, complete the event, but they have to take great pride in the way they did it. No moaning, no  negatives, no excuses, just head down and get on with it, supporting each other on the way. Great attitude and great support made an extreme event into a walk in the park.

It is good to feel that you have been part of a success, but I have total respect for the both of them, and Kayley I thank you for what you did and how you did it, you have made me feel very proud!

To complete an event like the 10 Med Steps challenge, everything has to be in place. You might be able to wing 5 times, but when you are looking at 9-10 hours constant exertion, in heat, you have to get it right! Preparation is everything, hydrating and carb loading before the event is essential.  

You then try and take on as much on the day as possible but you will need your reserves. Protien bars and energy gels are a way to get by, and require much discipline to take them at the right time. Ion tabs in the water to replace ‘salts’ (minerals) are incredibly important, as drinking in excess of 12 litres of water, does tend to flush the system out.

Fruit also supplies vitamins and minerals and also a sugar ‘pep up’. Having all of this in place and understanding when and why is essential to completing a task like this. So if you are planning an extreme event make sure you get proper qualified advice, otherwise it is your health that is at risk.

If you have any questions for me, about the above or anything health and fitness related, please email me at   wearefitandhappy@gmail.com