Bored of being chained to a desk and dreaming of a career in fitness, but not sure what the new 9-5 would really entail? We asked personal trainer Faisal Abdalla to take us through his typical day, giving us an insight into how he balances his busy work schedule with having a home life, keeping his diet in check and preventing injury.
As a PT, my work hours are centred around when it is my clients need me, so that often means lots of early starts and late finishes. Since becoming a dad I’ve really tried to address the work/life balance, so now tend to do either, rather than both. In theory that should mean I get much more downtime but having a baby and getting lots of rest aren’t exactly two things that go hand in hand!
With so many pressures on my time, it’s good to prepare where possible. I used to be very strict with my food prep and would spend hours in the kitchen on a Sunday to make sure was properly fuelled for the week. Now, I’d much rather spend that valuable time with my son so find myself grabbing food on the go more often. I’ve had to find a “clean” way to get my protein intake post-training so that I’m not relying on unhealthy quick fixes and undoing my hard work in the gym, and that’s where RXBARs have been a saviour. They’re now one of my kit bag essentials.
So, what does my day look like?
05:30am - My alarm goes off. I always pack my bag the night before so I can get out of the house by 05:45 to cycle to the train station. Dark mornings are something you get used to as a fitness trainer.
6am - I have something very light - like a banana or berries and nuts - if I’m feeling hungry and in need of energy, but I otherwise tend to save eating until after I’ve trained. I’m used to doing things that way, so hydrating with lots of water is usually all I need first thing.
7am - My first PT session begins bright and early. We will do some HIIT exercises or some strength and conditioning drills with heavy weights, depending on where we are at in their programme.
8am - My second PT client of the day arrives. I love the dedication of people who wake up early to train before work. It puts you in such a great mindset and really kick starts the body for the day ahead.
9.30am - 11.30am - Now it’s time to tackle my own training. I don’t train for the whole two hours as I like to include plenty of time for stretching; it helps keep me mobile and injury free, which is so important when you train as often as I do. My workouts tend to combine lots of different areas, from weight lifting and cardio to gymnastics.
11.30am – I’m ready to refuel. I have an RX Bar almost immediately after training to get some protein in, but always make sure to eat more food within half an hour of training, with a combination of carbs and protein. Omelette with chicken sausage, red pepper and sweet potato is my current post-workout favourite. If you’re looking to try RXBARs, the Chocolate Sea Salt is a game changer.
12pm - 5pm - I tend to have lots of meetings with potential clients, brands and my management, so these are usually slotted in during the afternoon. If not, I use the time to nip home for some daddy time with my boy, and we will get outdoors to do something fun. I usually grab some content in my home gym if I’m there - just a quick workout or some photos - so I’ve got a healthy stock for my Instagram feed.
5pm - It’s back to London to teach. I’m currently guest coaching at WIT Fitness and my classes are a combination of CrossFit and HIIT. I absolutely love the thrill of teaching. I will never grow bored of coaching a buzzing class of like-minded people who have turned up to smash it out.
6pm - Home time! I don’t like to finish later than 6pm if I’ve had an early start because it means I can get home for my boy’s bedtime and veg on the sofa for some wind down time. At the start of my fitness career I started at 7am and finished at 10pm every day. That definitely takes its toll after a while, but if you really want anything in life, you’ve got to hustle!
Head over to RXBAR website to stock up or visit their Instagram to find out more.