If you’ve never been to Equinox, odds are that you never heard of the Tier X program. However, for those of you who have been financially fortunate, or work at this gym, then you may have. In any case, we know that Equinox is a high end gym, I don’t have a membership there anymore as I no longer work in the city. However, when I worked downtown I splurged on myself and took out a corporate membership there. That’s how I met Tom Ram, one of the personal trainers there. Tom is now on his way to becoming a Tier X coach.
So what the hell is Tier X?
Here is how Equinox markets it on their website:
Tier X is a lifestyle management program with a uniquely holistic approach to high-performance living.
Our years of scientific research confirm that the only way to reach an elite state of fitness is to address the areas of Movement, Nutrition and Regeneration in tandem.
The result? When you change your behavior, you begin to function at a higher level across the board. Whatever it is you do, Tier X will help you do it at the peak of your powers. You’ll move, fuel and recharge like a champion, every single day.
Tom and I worked together for a few months, and we have stayed in contact over the years. Whenever I hit a great number on something he used to gauge me on, I’d message him. Hey Tom, I did 500 meters in one minute and fifty two seconds, easy work! LOL. (It’s not easy, I have to go one hundred percent to hit that target.) In any case, we’ve stayed connected over the years.
Now as Tom’s career is advancing, he had the opportunity to choose someone to work with for his Tier X assessment. He approached me about it, and I made the necessary arrangements to ensure that I could be a part of this. I know Tom, I know Equinox, and I know this was a great opportunity that was presented to me.
The process took two Tuesdays. So I took the days off from work and went to Equinox to meet with Tom. We performed a series of tests that ranged from laying down for 20 minutes to running full speed on a treadmill until failure, to standing damn near naked measuring my body fat. I mean, it was a very in depth and thorough process. He examined my movement and posture, how my body utilized energy, how I felt, my goals, the why of “why I train,” and a bunch of other personal stuff that is none of your damn business.
We did all this over the course of the first Tuesday. The second Tuesday was time for me to receive all my results, talk about, and come up with the necessary plan for improvement.
At the end of it all we determined that I need to train with weights as I have been, but rather than a “bodybuilding split,” I should be using a more full body approach several times a week. I need to focus on hip and quad dominant movements as well. This one is tricky because I teach at the gym so often, so training legs several times a week is gonna hurt. But I suppose I’ll adapt and get stronger. I always do.
In addition to this we have determined that I need more restorative and movement training in my life. I’m extremely tight and stiff, in order to correct this I have returned to taking Pilates and Yoga at least once a week. More if at all possible.
This Saturday will be my last day teaching those weekend classes full time, so that will give me back another day to focus on my own training. I’ll be making that a strength and cardio day. Sundays will become a Yoga day for me.
My approach to cardio has also been modified, it was determined that I need Low intensity steady state (LISS) cardio to improve my VT1 function. I don’t know much about that VT crap, but it looks like I was just slightly off in that area. So I’m doing what I was told to do. I’m required to keep my heart rate between 98 and 123 during that type of cardio. In order to achieve that I purchased a heart rate monitor, there was no way I could train that “softly” without a measurement tool. I’m just way too intense.
We determined what I already knew, MY CARDIO IS SICK! Mind you, the only reason that it didn’t come out better is because I had to hold back. The tests were done on Tuesday, and I had to teach on Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday of that week. I was afraid if I pushed too hard I might injure myself, due to this I was rather conservative about when to call it quits on the full speed run. Also note, I have been having issues with my achilles tendon, and I haven’t run for over a year. I know I could have pushed through to the next level, however, I didn’t think it was worth any injuries.
One of the other areas we spoke and worked on was meal prepping. I suggested this for myself because I felt that is was a major area of improvement. I believe that it will save me some money, and prove to be the final missing step in my transformation. When we eat out, we have no idea what is put into our food. But when we cook it ourselves, we control it all! This is one area I could definitely improve on, and I have! I’ll write more on my meal prep processes in a future article.
I spoke with Tom a few times after everything, and he’s provided me some advice and ideas on how to go forward. I’ve already begun implementing things, and if nothing else has come of it yet, I’m saving money on food, I know what I’m putting in my system, and I’m improving on these damn injuries. I’ll keep this up and hopefully in a few months your boy will hit the goals!