Kev, Author at 98 Gym
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  • Strength and Conditioning Coach for SOCOM
  • 18 Years Military Experience
  • Diploma Exercise Science
  • Powerlifting Coach
  • Founder of Strengthelite


Kevin is a strength and conditioning coach with ten years direct experience coaching athletes, soldiers and coaches alike. With over fifteen years serving in the Australian Military, five of which were managing a high performance program, Kevin’s skills and experience are rooted in training with purpose, to achieve the mental toughness to never quit – to always find a way.

He currently sits on the board for the Tactical Strength & Conditioning Association in Australia and has presented to Police, Military and S&C coaches across the country. He is also the founder of Strength Elite.

Kevin believes in humility and the pursuit of excellence. His training is science-based and he is happy to work with anyone who possesses the grit and determination to improve themselves, get uncomfortable, knowing that nothing worth having ever came easy.

With the second round of testing completed here in the gym and first lot of testing done for our online members, I am very happy to share the results…who would have thought, hard work, consistency pays off!

We tested over 100 people and the results are once again very impressive. A few things to remember when you read this, the longer you have trained for (6-8 years) your improvements will be minimal, and sometimes you won’t be measuring kgs or watts, you’ll be measuring the pain, muscle soreness the next day or how long your heart rate (HR) took to return to baseline. If you are new to training (3-12 months) the improvements will be in leaps in bounds, this is due to the rapid and wonderful physical improvements that happen as a novice trainer.

Also understand that if you didn’t have the best lead up to testing, meaning travel, sickness some small injuries, that will also affect you. And this is a snap shot of you on the day. You may also not be that used to “testing” and that can also make people nervous and studies have shown when you’re not very good at regulating your mental and emotional state, you can have a decrease in performance. However…if you train the way you “play” then these effects will be minimal on the day

So below are both testing results so far, blue are the results just gone.

Average BW for the Females: 52.3kg 59.6kg
Average BW for the Males: 81.1kg 81.1kg
Average Deadlift for the Females: 99.7kg 101.3kg
Average Deadlift for the Males: 140.3kg 151.4kg
Average Pull ups for the Females: 2 4
Average Pull ups for the Males: 6 8
Average Calories on Assault Bike for the Females: 12 14
Average Calories on Assault Bike for the Males: 28 29
Average time for Box Jump for the Females: 2 mins 35 secs 2 mins 27 secs
Average time for Box Jump for the Males: 2 mins 05 secs 2 mins
Average time for the 2km Ski for the Females: 9 mins 51 secs 9 mins 07 secs
Average time for the 2km Ski for the Males: 8 mins 2 secs 7 mins 53 secs

A quick look at these results and you could be mistaken to think its not that impressive.  Due to the large number of people who tested this time and the fact that these are the average over all, you can be forgiven to think its not what you thought it would be. Here are some individual results.

  • Male 88kg deadlift increase by 42kg
  • Male 85kg Ski time decreased (faster) by 42 seconds
  • Female 62kg deadlift increase by 21kg
  • Female 61kg deadlift increase by 27kg
  • Male 67kg Ski time decreased (faster) by 69 seconds

The above results in a matter of months is great, this is what it looks like for the majority of our members, also a 50% increase in the pull ups by the girls across the board in a little over 3 months. You are all getting stronger, faster and more conditioned.

The difference in males and females is once again very minimal and too close to call…however, gentlemen… let me just say this. Ego vs proper technique over time… technique trumps ego.

Another stat that needs to be addressed is that the average gym has 75% of it members turn up 2 days or less, at 98 Gym 96% turn up 5 days or more. Meaning you all train harder and more often and put yourself under more stress… this is why you are performing so well. We exist in a bubble and as I said last time, if you compare yourself to those inside the gym its easy to forget just how hard the average session is here, and that becomes your “standard”, your normal.

Testing is a snap shot in time, you may be stronger and faster next week, or you could be slower and weaker in three weeks time… it’s all lifestyle dependent.

The take away is this…know your results, put them into play during your sessions, the strength sessions, the ESD sessions and if you want to know how they apply then ask a coach and we can direct you in the right way.

From here I’ve put together the plan for the next few months, we will be introducing new warm ups to progress everyone through, new movements to place new stress/stimulus onto your body, to ensure it never adapts and always gets stronger.  We will also look to grow the number of strength classes to accommodate those who wish to get even stronger, meaning we will introduce additional sessions on top of those we already have. The gym will take on a new look soon as well, with more updated equipment for everyone to use. We will ensure that we are at the forefront of training and coaching.

And last but not least, welcome to all our 98 online members who tested and who joined our community in the last few weeks, I can’t wait to work with you all for years to come!

Owen is one of those guys who’s success comes off the back of his tireless work ethic and dedication to his trade. He never complains or looks for the easy way, he just does the work most others aren’t willing to do. It’s a privilege to work with this guy. 100 games for the All Blacks, two world cups, Super rugby championships, none of this just happens, the secret? Hard work.

“Don’t trust trainers who have pencil necks or ones who are quick to give you advice on how to get strong, but when you ask them what weights they can lift they tell you they’re training for a marathon!”
Ben Franks (Former All Black. Current Northampton Saints Player)

I’ve started this article with the above quote, because I believe the reason there’s so much confusion out there in regards to training women lies at the feet of the coaches who have refused to better educate themselves. Over the years I’ve seen all manner of things come in and out of this industry; to my amazement there seems to be a constant need to misinform women on how to train. Hopefully after reading this it will become abundantly clear that the only difference between training men and women is that there should be no Lycra worn by men at any point… ever.


Lift Heavy!

It’s a myth that if you lift heavy, you will get bulky. Ladies, you have to lift heavy weight 3-4 times per week. Why? Because it increases your strength, burns more calories, helps you jump higher, run faster, stay injury free; increases bone density, strengthens ligaments and tendons and you’ll sleep better as well. You will also lose weight faster and shape/change your body the way you’ve intended to. You will not get massive. This kicks sand in the face of every male that has spent years lifting! Unless you have a specific goal in regards to putting on size, (targeted training, supplements and very good genetics) then you could spend years lifting heavy and the only thing that will happen is that you’ll get stronger… not bigger. As a whole, women don’t have the hormones required to bulk up… granted some have more than others, but this is not the rule, but the exception.


Work on your weakness.

What I’m talking about here is accessory exercises to make your main lifts better. You need to target the areas that are holding your strength gains back. Hamstrings, glutes, calfs, biceps, triceps, lower back, abs, pecs, shoulders… all this should be part of your weekly training schedule regardless of your chosen sport or endeavour. No one ever complained of being too strong, injury free or of having a better work capacity.


Train your upper body.

You need to target areas that you are weak in and for most females it’s the upper body. You need to increase the training load/volume on the upper body if you’re not already doing this. Twice a week will do for a start, and that needs to be consistent. That means twice a week for every week in line with your training block. You won’t get bigger arms, your back won’t pop out of your shirt… again you’ll just get stronger, shape your body and increase the density of your bones whilst improving in your chosen sport or job.


Learn how to lift.

You’d think this would be the next logical step, but sadly most of the time it’s not. When I say learn how to lift, I mean find a coach who can show you the proper technique. This is a process and will take more than one session. Find a good coach – someone who can lift themselves; who practices what they preach and has a good track record. So many times people get put off lifting heavy weight, because they injure themselves due to incorrect technique, incorrect programming, lifting too heavy too quick and a poor coach who doesn’t monitor all of this for them.

While I was writing this I asked one of my athletes who trains with me regularly what benefits she has noticed since she started training with us just over a year ago. These are her words…

“My butt has significantly lifted. I have more defined legs, a toned mid section, defined shoulders. More energy & focus throughout the day. Better posture, improved running style and improved times! My swimming is stronger; paddling for waves is far easier. I have better balance on my board and improved my boxing style and strength. Plus I can carry all my groceries into the house in one go!” – Amanda K

Overall, the way you strength train a female client or a male client should not be different because of their sex. Skill, training age, past injuries and goals are how we focus our programming – not gender. No one has ever has been hampered by being stronger. Don’t buy into the lies or bullshit that surround this subject, focus on the facts not the emotion.

Train hard, train smart!

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