Autonomy πŸ€ΈπŸ”βœŠ GMB Fitness

Small Space? Use it Well

September 10, 2020 GMB Fitness Season 2
Autonomy πŸ€ΈπŸ”βœŠ GMB Fitness
Small Space? Use it Well
Chapters
0:27
Get Creative with Your Space, Prepare
12:06
Make a Plan, Set up a Routine
17:37
Minimize Distractions, Increase Awareness
25:16
Bonus Tip
Autonomy πŸ€ΈπŸ”βœŠ GMB Fitness
Small Space? Use it Well
Sep 10, 2020 Season 2
GMB Fitness

With so many people now trying to exercise at home, we're hearing more and more often how challenging it can be if you're used to having more space and a specialized environment. But there's a lot to be gained from learning to use the space you have.Β 

  • Not much room
  • Bad flooring?
  • Family or roommates?Β 


None of these are deal breakers. This episode is focused on preparing the right timing, spacing, and mindset for a productive training session. While we'd _love_ for each of our clients to have a dedicated room with nice flooring and an altar to GMB in the corner, the fact is we don't even sell signed 8x10s of Ryan, so you're gonna have to make do with what you have.

When you do, you'll find that a small space stimulates your awareness and creativity, which makes up for whatever feeling of constraint you may have to deal with in the process.

Resources


Support the show (https://gmb.io/podcast/)

Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

With so many people now trying to exercise at home, we're hearing more and more often how challenging it can be if you're used to having more space and a specialized environment. But there's a lot to be gained from learning to use the space you have.Β 

  • Not much room
  • Bad flooring?
  • Family or roommates?Β 


None of these are deal breakers. This episode is focused on preparing the right timing, spacing, and mindset for a productive training session. While we'd _love_ for each of our clients to have a dedicated room with nice flooring and an altar to GMB in the corner, the fact is we don't even sell signed 8x10s of Ryan, so you're gonna have to make do with what you have.

When you do, you'll find that a small space stimulates your awareness and creativity, which makes up for whatever feeling of constraint you may have to deal with in the process.

Resources


Support the show (https://gmb.io/podcast/)

Andy:
All right. All right. Welcome to the Gravity Mint Blanket Podcast.

Ryan:
Name of our new band.

Andy:
That's right. It is a post-pop, semi-industrial, country western band.

Ryan:
I would listen to it.

Andy:
Yeah, but you have horrible taste.

Ryan:
I do, that's the thing. I listen to some weird shit. So, that's right up my alley, right up my alley.

Get Creative with Your Space, Prepare

Andy:
So, I've been cruising our Instagram, periodically. I've been stalking us on Instagram lately. I hate to admit it, but I have actually done this. So, some of my favorite videos of our clients that I've seen that are posting stuff with our hashtag on the grams, the one that jumps out in my mind is a woman who is doing our Vitamin program in an RV.

Ryan:
Yeah.

Andy:
I love this because when we post videos and stuff, we always get comments that are like, Oh, I don't have enough space to do that. We got an email a few days ago from someone asking you, is it possible to do this in a small apartment in New York. Yes. Gene, our web developer does do these things in a small apartment in New York. We had one guy that said, I could never do that, I live in Tokyo. I'm like, dude, I live in Tokyo. He's like, no you don't. What does that have to do with anything?

Andy:
But the point being, that yes, the movements that we do, they require some space. You need a little bit of room around you. But also, many of them, if you're a little creative, can be done in a smaller space. We see people using these in a smaller space, doing floor rolls and stuff in an RV. Don't tell me you don't have enough space. But also, there are some creative ways that you can do things and we've done these things in smaller spaces. More space is also useful for things but it's like that thing where the restraints force you to be creative. Constraints, not restraints.

Ryan:
Constraints. Restraints, eh kind of tough, but constraints, yeah.

Andy:
You might need to be creative if you're restrained as well. But this is what we're going to be talking about today is how to make the most of the space you have in your training. Sometimes that might be a small space. Sometimes it might be a large space and that's fine too, but you still need to be able to prepare your space to make sure that it is effective. This includes, people always ask us, what kind of special mat is Ryan training on? It's funny, one of the videos that we get this question on, it's literally just a rug that was in the Airbnb where Ryan was.

Andy:
Where can I get that mat? It's a rug, it's just a rug.

Ryan:
Like Target or something, right?

Andy:
Yeah.

Ryan:
Or something I don't even know, yeah.

Andy:
Preparing your space is important. Not just in terms of the physical space, but the way you approach it mentally and getting in the right mind space, getting in the right mind set and to have a good session to really prepare. We come from this martial arts background where you step into the dojo and when you open the door, you bow, you take off your shoes, you step onto the mat, you change your clothes and all of these things. The shift from the outside world to inside the dojo and preparing for your training. Then afterwards you clean the floors. Then you change back and then you leave. Really how you approach your space can make a big impact on your training. So, we're going to talk a lot about this today. Some of it more practical, some of it more philosophical, but this is what we're getting into. So, welcome. After that extended introduction, I hope that you are not asleep at the wheel. Let's do it.

Ryan:
Oh, sorry, dozed off there for a second. Yeah, man. So, it's not the size that matters, it's what you can do with it.

Andy:
So I hear.

Ryan:
That's the story of my life. But that's basically it. A lot of people say, okay, I don't have the space, therefore I can't and they don't. It's a shame really, to be honest. I think the biggest thing that you can get out of this entire podcast would be to get creative. Creativity really is what's going to allow you to continue, and that's the big thing. You might not be doing the exact thing that you want to be doing at that point in time, but you can do something that's going to benefit you and something that you can enjoy as well. It's really easy to skip your workout when it's not easy to get started. With that then, what we want to do is look at, in having this plan and then really creating a space where you have different options for you to be able to do that.

Ryan:
Again, if you don't have things set up, it's going to be very easy just to say, listen, you know what, I'm not going to do it. Creativity is really what we're after. In the beginning, really taking a look at where you are. Now going through the whole COVID thing, is it ever going to end? Who knows. But the thing is, really wherever you're at, there is something you can do, no matter the size. The first thing though, if you really want to take a look at what are your options, and so looking around at your house, apartment, wherever you are, your tent, and really try and say, what sort of space can I create here? Again, don't think that you have to recreate your entire room, remodel or do anything like that. All we're trying to do is take a look and say, what are the options? What is right in front of me that I can maybe just shift this couch over a little bit, or maybe just as is, what can I do?

Ryan:
So, that's I think really a good place to start. Instead of saying, well, I don't have a bench, I don't have a chin up bar, I don't have weights or anything like that. Okay, that's fine. But what do you have and what sort of space do you have? So again, you might need to move some things around, but you just need to make sure that you set up your space so that it's very assessable. For example, I mentioned the couch, or let's look at it this way. Let's say that you're in your living room and you've got a table that's in the middle of your living room. Well, probably don't want to just be doing it as it is because it can be dangerous. That's the other thing too. You need to make sure that you're practicing in a safe place. So you might need to move that table over a little bit.

Andy:
I don't know. Most people's tables are bolted to the floor though, Ryan.

Ryan:
Yeah, right and so that's what I was getting at. So, you might try and think that you're going to do it in your living room and start to move your table and realize, you know what, this sucker's heavy, or I can't move this, or I shouldn't move this because everything else is on the table. So, then you go to a different place in your house and say, okay, where are some other places that I could do this in? So, what I'm saying here is that just because you feel that you want to work out in the living room, doesn't necessarily mean that may be an option for you.

Ryan:
So, this is where you need to get creative. Go around your house, your apartment, and just find places that you can do this. Sometimes it can just be as easy as saying, there's an empty wall, and make sure the TV isn't next to it. If you could kick up and do a handstand and it's a safe place, there you go, you can practice your handstands. But hallways, I think are great. Here in Japan we don't really have hallways, but if you live in a country where there's hallways, Andy, I guess you guys do have a hallway in your apartment.

Ryan:
So, there's an option for you to do that. You could do some locomotion. If you just even have a space that is a size of a yoga mat, there's a lot of stuff you can do. In-place movements like for example, bodyweight squats, you can do push ups, you can do your planches, you can do things like that. So, there's a lot of different options with just that space. I already mentioned an empty wall for handstands, just make sure that you're careful. If you've got a doorway, maybe you can buy a portable pull-up bar that you can put in there to do some pull-ups. You can even use a table in your kitchen, if it's high enough off the ground. You can't really do that in Japan over here. But the thing is really, all I'm trying to say is that there are tons of options that are right in front of you. You just need to get creative and be open to the possibilities that are available to you.

Andy:
It's important to understand too, we post videos of Ryan in a big open room doing exercise. The reason we do that is because if we took this video in Ryan's actual living room, you would see that he has a 12 year old sofa with multiple blankets draped over it. I'm not joking.

Ryan:
That's right. No, for real, it's what it is.

Andy:
Torn Shoji paper screens in the background

Ryan:
That my son tore that we still haven't fixed since he was five.

Andy:
Crap all over the place because he lives in there, and that's distracting.

Andy:
So, as a service to you, the viewer, we pay rent on a place that has no furniture in it where Ryan does demonstrations. That does not mean that this is required. It's just because it would be distracting otherwise. Now I know that we have this Relic culture of standing in front of the TV, watching Jane Fonda and five of her friends and facing the TV and working out with it. But anyone who's used any of our programs, you know that, that's not the way our stuff is set up and we highly discourage you from doing that.

Andy:
You should not be trying to watch a movie while you're training. The thing is, every exercise, like we'll have demo videos, but then you go and do it. You don't need to be looking at the screen when you do this thing. In fact, you should not be. So this opens up another option for you. You are not nailed to where the TV is. You do not have to be sitting in front of your computer. Then where this gets neat, where I'm going with this, I swear there's a purpose. Hold on, we're almost there. It's going to be really good.

Andy:
You don't have to do everything in the same place. That's the thing Ryan was talking about, go around your space and see what different areas you have. You might have a corner that is big enough to stretch in, but maybe not enough room to do something else. Or you might have a space between your coffee table and your sofa where if you move the coffee table a few inches, you've got enough room to do pushups, lunges, bridges, any of those kinds of moves, that yoga mat kind of space. Then when it's time for pulls, you can walk over, walk to your dining room or wherever, and do your pulls on your table or walk to a doorway where your pull-up bar is.

Andy:
What I'm saying is, you don't have to do everything in one place. Be a little creative. Plan around. Think about what you're going to be doing and then just decide what space each exercise needs. You don't have to have a space that you can do everything.

Make a Plan, Set up a Routine

Ryan:
That's right, yeah. That's what it is. That's the next point, is just setting up your plan, plan of action. So, once you do understand those areas that are available to you in your apartment, your house or wherever you are, then you can start looking at incorporating those areas into your session that day. Might mean to change up a little bit of stuff in your house. Like Andy said, moving a coffee table or something like that, but that's easy and just move it back. The other good thing to think about too is, when you have this plan, also kind of have a backup plan.

Ryan:
Let's say, for example, and this used to happen to me quite a bit, is when I was working out at home because I didn't have a place, an office, if you will, like I do right now. So, I would do all of my exercises at home and the kids would happen to be there that day. So, at that particular time, I wasn't able to do that. So I had a backup plan for what I was going to do. So, always take that in consideration, that kind of when shit happens plan, if you will. Along those lines, you've got your plan now and so the next thing would be to set up a routine. This is related to what I was just mentioning in terms of having a family, having kids and just basically having a life.

Ryan:
That is, once you know where you are going to be exercising and what you can do, then set up your routine. This is another thing. When I was setting up my routine at home, then my family knew that at this time I was going to be doing my exercise. So, that meant, basically 'Don't Disturb Daddy.' Of course, typically the kids would end up joining and we would play. But what I mean is that, that's your time and if you are able to set aside time for that, and other people are aware of that, then you can actually do what you want to do. A lot of people actually don't talk about this with their significant others and say, 'Hey, I'm just going to work out,' and it ends up being just a whole hour or however long of frustration because you're interrupted and asked questions and things like that.

Ryan:
I used to talk to my wife and we used to say, okay, it's as if I were outside of the house at the gym. Of course there's got to be give and take with that. But set up your routine, find a time that's going to be good for you, let people know. The other thing that I like to do is actually change out of my pajamas into actual workout clothing to get me into the mood for doing it.

Andy:
I just basically wear the same sweats and old T-shirt all day.

Ryan:
All day long, yeah. But you don't need to worry about showering or anything.

Andy:
Especially after I workout. After I work on, I like to just kind of sit around in those sweaty clothes for hours afterwards.

Ryan:
Nice. That's why you're so popular, man. So that's why we have the internet company everyone, so that we don't have to be in the same room with Andy.

Andy:
You make a good point. Changing clothes. This is what people are learning now in--

Ryan:
--in the world of Covid.

Andy:
In the new world, is it still is good to get up and shower and put on clothes. You will feel more productive. Same thing when you're training. If you just try to do stuff in the same clothes, you're not going to feel like you've started a thing. Now at this point, some people are probably listening, saying, well, hold the fuck on, Ryan works out in jeans. Sometimes that's true. But the thing you need to realize is when Ryan demonstrates an exercise for a video, that's not his actual workout guys.

Ryan:
That's right, yeah, that's not a workout.

Andy:
Ryan doing two pistol squats for a picture is not his workout.

Ryan:
A little bit different. So let's just say, I do need to change my T-shirt and usually my pants or whatever I'm wearing, once I complete my workout. So, I get pretty sweaty when I do this. What I am saying and what Andy is saying too, is that by making that literal change into other clothing, it's going to also be a mental change and really set you up and say, Hey, okay, now I'm getting ready for my workout. So, therefore it doesn't matter where you are. It's that mental reframe, that change that's going to allow you to say, okay, it's time to do this. Other things too, like maybe you listen to music, have your playlist ready, your water, your towel, things like that. But the thing that's really important here is just don't make it random. Things that don't get planned typically don't happen. Or if they even happen, they're not really that well thought out, therefore, they're not planned adequately.

Ryan:
But the thing, if you plan things out and say again, this is where I'm going to do it, this is what I can do, these are my options and this is my routine that I'm going to set up and do it at this time and this is what I'm going to do to prepare to get going, it's going to be so much better. You're going to have a lot more fun with it. You're going to see results and you're going to feel really good later off. If you're the kind of person that wants to check off a box to say you did something great, there you go, you can do that.

Minimize Distractions, Increase Awareness

Ryan:
So, the next thing now we want to jump right into it is looking at distractions because as I mentioned before, you might be in a predicament where you're with your family right now and it's going to be tough, to be honest. Lots of stuff going on in a house. But if you can, try and set this up again so that they understand and other people understand that it's your time. Now, if you are out there and it's just you, then in terms of distractions, what I would say is to turn off your notifications. I think this is a big one. So, you can step away from your phone and the email for 30, 45, an hour at a time, the world is not going to end. I promise you. Not looking at the news is probably a good thing right now. So, turn off your email, turn off the TV as well. Andy brought this up, being in front of a TV, watching a movie while you're trying to work out, it's distracting.

Ryan:
Here in GMB, we're about awareness. You're not going to be able to make this progress in terms of having a better understanding of yourself, learning these movements if you're trying to watch TV, check your email and do all this other stuff while you're trying to do a backward shoulder roll. So, it comes down to, again, the awareness portion of it, bringing this up because it's also a matter of safety. If you are working out at home and let's say you're watching the TV and then just trying to do something and you're so distracted by the TV that you forgot that the coffee table was moved to a certain place, you might bang into that. It can be dangerous. So, you really want to keep your focus on what you're doing and be aware of your environment as well.

Andy:
You do anyway. So, this comes back to the thing where, when people say they have limited space. I always think that this is actually a good thing. I always think that this is not a negative. I always think that it's a benefit. Having some confines, having those constraints within which you need to develop your creativity, because that also makes you develop your awareness. This is the thing, if you're just listening to music or watching the TV, you're not being aware of what's happening in your body. But if you don't have those distractions, and if you do have a space that is forcing you to pay attention to what is around you, well, then you're actually giving yourself more signal. You're giving more signal to your mind and your body, your sense of space, your vestibular sense as well, your depth perception.

Andy:
You're giving more information to your nervous system in your body that helps you integrate the way this is supposed to be feeling. When you bring your awareness to this, helps you really develop your ownership of these skills. When I was learning to do cartwheels when I was a kid, and I didn't learn these in gymnastics, I learned them in martial arts. I didn't do them really pretty, but we would get to the point where we're pretty good at cartwheels. But the real test always came, our sensei would come and stand over there and we had to do a cartwheel next to him, and if we kicked him we would have to do 20 pushups. But that was the test. That was where I learned, okay, I have to extend my legs.

Andy:
I'm not saying that you need to do like cartwheels in a narrow hallway, even though once you get to a certain point, you should, because it's a thing you can do to get better. But learning how to do different kinds of movements, what are the kinds of movements you're already comfortable with in a tight space? Probably standing, stepping, turning, sitting down. Well, maybe if you expanded that by forcing yourself a little bit to do some different moves in a tighter space, you might learn some things. Might make you less clumsy when you're walking around corners, might make you a little better at navigating different spaces and feeling like you have more physical options. So, this again is just, it's something where the thing that a lot of people think is a disadvantage actually can turn into a good advantage later on. Another example, people look at some of these moves and they say, Oh, you should never do those on a hard floor. Bullshit.

Andy:
You should do them on hard floors. Now maybe when you're first learning a move, you should not do things at full velocity and full force on a hard floor. But let me tell you, why are my floor rolls so smooth? Because I practiced them on hardwood floors.

Ryan:
Hell yeah. That's the best feedback you're going to get right there. That's the best feedback you're going to get. You're going to learn real quick if you're doing it correctly or incorrectly.

Andy:
If you only practice on a soft padded floor, you're not going to know that your elbow is banging harder than it should. You're not going to know that your shoulders should round more. You're not going to know these things. You're not going to know that if you turn your neck a little bit, you'll actually get more space. But if you do these on a hard floor, you're going to learn things a lot more quickly.

Andy:
So again, it's just another example. Don't think that these things are necessarily deal killers or that they're negatives. They change the approach that you have to take, but you just need to be careful if your environment isn't ideal. But that's fine.

Ryan:
We talked a lot about this. I think it was really good. Just kind of the key points to kind of wrap this up is really just get creative. That's the first thing. Figure out what's available for you. What do you have? Look at your space as an opportunity and then figure out the possibilities that are there for you, because there are possibilities, there definitely are. Set up a plan, you got to have a plan. Once you understand what you can do and what's available, then set up your plan. You're going to have to maybe change things around. The program that you're doing might have to be adjusted, perfectly fine with that, it's all good.

Ryan:
Then you set up your routine. Try and figure out, when am I going to do this? It can be the same time every day. That's something with me. I work out in the afternoons at a particular time because I do all my work during the day and I just have a time set up for that. That could be you. Then as far as a routine as well, look at what is going to help you in order to get into the right state of mind, to begin your workouts and make it easier for you to do them. Then the last thing is avoid distractions. So, really be present in your sessions that you're doing. It's going to help you to enjoy them as well.

Andy:
It's a combination of timing, place and psychology. Don't just think, my house is like this. That's not all of it. Think about how different rooms are used differently at different times of day. How you can arrange your space to get the most out of it and how you can arrange your space and the timing and other factors like putting Abba on repeat for the next 45 minutes. How you can tweak your psychology to make sure that you're getting the most out of the space that you have too. This stuff is important.

Bonus Tip

Ryan:
That's really good. I'll leave you with a secret technique. So, we talked a lot about being indoors in your house, but I would like to say the next time that you're outside and you're walking around, stand up tall, be proud and really that's it. Next time you're walking around, don't slouch. Bring your chest up, chin up and go out and be good. That's about it.

Andy:
All right, that's it.

Ryan:
Later, bye-bye.

Andy:
Goodbye.


Get Creative with Your Space, Prepare
Make a Plan, Set up a Routine
Minimize Distractions, Increase Awareness
Bonus Tip