THE LAW OF THE LID… Is it affecting your progress and results in the gym?

I first learned of the law of the lid in John Maxwell’s book “The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership”. In essence there is a lid or cap on your growth or potential to succeed in any given subject or area based on the leader you are following, alternatively if you are a leader in your field, you yourself cannot help an individual beyond your own capabilities, education or experience. Seems like a basic concept right?

So when it comes to your health and fitness who are you following? What is their lid? Are they raising their lid? Are they invested in themselves? Have they done any new courses to develop themselves so they can help you better? Maybe you are a trainer yourself, when’s the last time you did anything to grow yourself so you can help grow others?

It may come off judgemental but what type of shape is your trainer in or what is the general fitness standards of the trainers at your local gym? I don’t think PT’s need to rock a 6 pack all year long and I do believe theres some great coaches out there who themselves struggle with body composition or fitness through different periods of life but can they show evidence of ever being in decent shape? If you want to be able to do a 200kg deadlift and they have never done one or coached someone to be able to do one then are you following the right person? We as trainers and leaders need to know when its the right time to move people on or put the ego aside and admit that you cant help someone even though it can come down to the nitty gritty cash money side of things.

So if its results you are after whats your trainers track record? How many people have they helped successfully? Are they actually in shape? Do they have the ability to practice the self discipline that you need to achieve your goal? If not and your results mean more to you than the emotional connection you have to your trainer then maybe its time to let go and move on. At the same time maybe you have the awareness to pull yourself up on your own BS and admit its not actually them, its you…

I don’t believe it is our job as trainers to accept peoples BS and be enablers of shitty habits and behaviours because of fear of offending people or hurting someones feelings OR for fear of losing a client. Feelings are overrated and it is an individuals responsibility to take ownership of their RESPONSE-ABILITY although I do understand that not everyone has that emotional intelligence but a good coach will know how to work around this and still be able to bring someones shortcomings to the light.

Is it morally right to continue to take someones money when they are getting no results? I do think there are circumstances that warrant it and that is only when a client can admit that they simply enjoy training with their trainer and if it wasn’t for their booked session they simply wouldn’t turn up to do anything or bother doing any exercise at all. Something is better than nothing. In all other circumstances. NO.

If you are a trainer either raise your lid or know your role, know when you’re out of your depth, move people on if you know you cant help them – there’s always more people needing your help.

If you are a client and your results are important and you know you’re doing everything your trainer has coached you to do with consistency and persistence

and you’re not getting to where you want to go with a reasonable expectation then do yourself a favour and make the hard call. Follow someone that is continually raising their lid.

Choose the people that hold you to a higher standard, not the ones that make you feel better…

By Chris Rae

Chris has been a trainer since 2006 and has been running Target Life Fitness since 2012.

Chris is a strong believer in functional fitness and holistic health.

My Letter To The Residents of Peakhurst & Surrounding Areas

I bet you don’t like going to new gyms.
They’re not very welcoming. People there don’t talk to you.
Big gyms can be full of people watching themselves in the mirror doing bicep curls!
Well I’d agree.
What if I told you our place is different?…of course it is you’d say.
In a moment I’ll tell you more about that.
My name is Chris and I am the owner of Target Life Fitness.
I have been in the fitness industry as a fitness specialist since 2007.
The past 12 years have absolutely flown by…
I’ve built this gym from the ground up. From countless early mornings training clients and helping people simply get healthier and love the bodies they live in. From spending my time educating myself so I can serve people better.
I didnt start off with any big budget. We never had any big investors. We had a very basic set up at the start and with no real marketing knowledge we have grinded our way to what stands today as a respectable strength and conditioning facility with a focus on people, nutrition and circle of influence.
I wanted to capture the essence and connection of smaller style group fitness and personal training studios but give people access to a gym facility that they can also be independent in and comfortable to train in without any judgement from others.
This is not the typical start up of many of your bigger gyms. Many commercial chain gyms simply have investors that are merely looking at an opportunity to make easy money. Money where they rely on at least 40% of their members not turning up – so they oversell their memberships and they don’t care about anyone’s results or well being.
That’s not us. Never has been. Never will. We pride ourselves on a 90% turn up rate. If we haven’t seen you in a while. You’ll be hearing from us!
We know life can be hectic.
I bet yours is too.
Just getting to the gym a couple of times in a busy week should be celebrated.
When I built Target Life Fitness I wanted to build a place my Mum could walk into and train without feeling intimidated.
Do you really think I’d let people walk around making my Mum feel uncomfortable?
Going to a new gym can make you nervous. However, it shouldn’t be intimidating…that’s not what Target Life Fitness is about.
We’ve seen a heap of crazy things in gyms over the years.
At Target Life Fitness, we take the best aspects of different sports. We use those to help you become healthier, stronger, move better and in turn…be happier.
Our aim is to make all aspects of your life better through training.
Playing with your kids, sports you play, even the job you do. They can all be easier and more fun!
We want you to go out and enjoy your new found fitness.
I want training with us to be part of your life. However, we also believe that everything should be in balance.
Yes we train hard.
BBQs, dinners and of course a few drinks together are also things the TLF tribe love to do.
When you become part of Target Life we want you to stay with us long term.
You getting maximum benefits for your health, fitness and happiness is important to us.
I believe people can be better, happier versions of themselves.
I believe we can help.
Yours In Health,
Chris Rae
Fitness Specialist & Owner of Target Life Fitness

Up Your Pre & Post Workout Game With The Best Eats from the Streets of Peakhurst

Having a good pre-workout meal is crucial to getting the most out of your workout! If you are strength training, interval training, doing a met-con or simply aiming to work at your capacity then putting some good quality fuel in the tank is going to be ideal! PLUS if you love your carbs and you are trying to keep the bodyfat levels down then having 25% of your carb intake for the day both pre & post workout is going to ensure you are putting the carbs to use for fuel and recovery!

Here are some of our favourite spots to get some caffeine and feeds!

Cheat Day Sydney

Ask anyone around these guys arguably have the best coffee in town! They do a mean brisket beef and egg roll/breakkie burger that the world needs to discover! If you are a crazy keto person or are simply keeping the carbs to a minimum then their scrambled eggs and bacon (hold the bread) is the bomb – don’t quote me on this but I believe its on Romesco sauce???

As the name suggests great place to go for your cheat day requirements with a nice list of desserts and cheat foods to keep you satisfied until next cheat day!

The decor is super cool and has a gym theme to get you pumped up for your next workout and you gotta love the dumbbell table numbers!

George the owner is always welcoming and friendly as are all his staff!

Instagram @cheatdaysydney

@ The Corner 

12 Park St, Peakhurst

So many good options to choose from on the menu, coffee is always good and the service is always super fast & friendly! My personal favourite is the Corner Benny, which I rate as the best eggs benedict around the St. George area, if you’ve got a better one please post it in the comments 🙂 The breakfast veggie bowl is super filling and packed with nutrients but you can’t pass up the smashed avo even if it means you can’t save for a house in the area!

Harris and Andrew at The Corner are always super friendly and the vibes are always good @ The Corner 👍👍


Instagram @atthecorner_

Charlie Lovetts

2 Stanley St, Peakhurst

Great range of omelettes if you’re watching your carb intake or you’ve gone keto crazy. Coffee is consistently good & the frappes are mean after a sweaty summer workout whilst still being lower on the sugar side! The outdoor setting with all the greenery really creates a nice atmosphere!

Here’s a pro gym head tip: grab an iced coffee on almond milk, hold the ice cream and cream, chuck it in your protein shake with your favourite vanilla or chocolate protein powder, shake and bake! But don’t really bake it, just drink it:)

Instagram @charlielovett_peakhurst

Petite Delights 

112 Boundary Rd, Mortdale

Lots of options on the menu if you’re looking for something healthy on the go. They have a range of omelette quiches which will satisfy your protein intake and keep the starchy carbs on the low. Some naughty options too if you’re on a bulk with some pretty mean burgers if it fits your macros 🙂

Always friendly & fast service with constant delicious specials on the board!



Oregano Bakery

108A Boundary Rd, Peakhurst

Couldn’t resist giving these guys a mention. Now I know you’re probably thinking, how can a gym recommend a place that predominantly does dessert foods and you would have a valid point… But it’s delicious so shut up ok? We all need balance in our lives and if it fits your macros and you’re still living 80/20 there’s no reason you can’t enjoy some of these goodies!

The zaatar manoush is the bomb, the coffee is great and the service is always super friendly! They also do some protein smoothies and who can forget the cinnamon scrolls, the mini ones are great if you need some indulgence without tipping the days calorie intake!

Instagram @oreganobakery

Cafe 31

31B Ogilvy St, Peakhurst

Now don’t let the picture fool you these guys have got a whole healthy menu available… But they also have an epic share plate which is great to enjoy with your buddies after a good ol saturday sweat sesh. Yeah the carbs will probably break the days budget but who cares, its delicious, stay present, savour the flavour and enjoy the moment! Coffee and service has always been great!

Instagram @cafe31_peakhurst


Got a great cafe suggestion around the Peakhurst area? Drop us a line in the comments so we can check them out!









9 Ways to Stay Motivated to Workout In Winter!

It’s too cold, it’s too dark, I’m too tired, I just don’t feel motivated… Standard complaints you hear as a trainer in winter.

Having been a Personal Trainer for the past decade I’ve heard all sorts of excuses and for the most part it simply determines who wants change bad enough, who truly lives fitness as a lifestyle and not an accessory or a means to an end and whether or not one has a strong emotional WHY reason as to why they exercise in the first place… What is your relationship with exercise? Is it a luxury that happens after A,B,C,D,E,F & G or is it one of your non- negotiable A,B,C’s? As cliche as it might sound you can have excuses or you can have results but you can’t have both!


So why do you train? Why go through the pain? What’s it all really for? I believe if you have a strong enough Why reason driving you, you can only have reasons to exercise and not excuses not to. Reconnect with what it really means to you to exercise regularly and achieve your health and fitness related goals. What is emotionally driving you? What emotions do you no longer want to feel and what emotions are you looking to feel as a result of pursuing your health and fitness goals. Personally through times where I have had no specific goal for my training I have simply exercised for love of feeling

good, for mental clarity, for mood enhancement and general wellbeing. Why feel ordinary when you can feel extra-ordinary right?

2. Do you have a specific GOAL? Is someone keeping you accountable to that goal?

Have you decided to achieve something specific? Maybe you want to drop a dress size, get to a certain desired weight, get super shredded into single digit body-fat percentage or maybe you’re doing a “winter bulk”. Whatever it is it is always a good idea to first set a SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Timely) goal and then get someone to keep you accountable to that goal! A trainer, a friend, a family member, but ideally someone who has been on the same journey you are embarking on or is on the same mission as you! Aim to set a goal you really believe in achieving as a first milestone to build momentum and self confidence for bigger harder goals in future!

3) “It’s too cold” – There’s no such thing as bad weather – Just inappropriate clothing and bad methods of transportation 🙂

Personally I like the saying “There’s no such thing as bad weather – Just soft people” just a tad better but in the same note I’m not super keen to get outside and do some s

prints when it’s cold and raining. Maybe I’m a little soft but either way I get the job done – just in the gym instead.

Here’s some simple tips to battle sleeping in when it’s cold:

  1. Sleep In your gym gear – get up, get a hoodie – get going.
  2. Warm your clothes up on a heater before getting them on.
  3. Do not indulge in hitting the snooze button – start the day with an act of discipline. The rest of the day will get better and better. Like they say discipline is the bridge between goals and success.
  4. Get a banger of a track for your alarm that will fire you into action
  5. Get organised the night before! Lay out your clothes, pack your gym bag, make your morning process as easy as possible to get you out the door as quick as possible.
  6. Accountability buddy – Promise your friend at the gym you’ll see them tomorrow morning, you’re more likely to let yourself down but not your friends. Don’t have any friends? Book a session with a trainer or maybe try line up a tinder date at the gym – you can impress them with all your pull ups and squats 😛
  7. Have a vision board or something that reminds of your goals near your bed.
  8. Self talk – silence the weak voice that has the opinion that it’s ok to bail. That tomorrow you’ll make up for it. The voice that says a few more minutes sleep wont hurt. Do not indulge in the thought of that voice – he/she does nothing positive for you, that is the voice of self sabtoage and self doubt, the voice that keeps dreams exactly that – dreams. Procrastination is the biggest killer of self confidence. Value your own word and do what you set out to do!

4) “I feel sluggish and lethargic” – What is your nutrition like?

We are prone to putting on our winter coats in the form of body-fat throughout the winter period. It’s our natural response to the cold – put on layers of body-fat through over indulgence in poor quality carbs that will store away to produce a nice new layer of meaty insulation but you needn’t be another fat stat. Beat the carb cravings – Here’s what you can do:

  1. Plan in good quality carbs from fibrous sources like beans, whole-grains, brown rice, quinoa, sweet potato, oats, fruits and more. Adequate carbs from fibrous sources will most likely counter-act any carb cravings and prevent you from going H.A.M. on biscuits, ice cream, cakes and pastries. BONUS sugar binds to fibre and has a higher chance of passing through your system. Carbs that hit the sewer and not your waistline? Winning!
  2. Eat more portions of protein – The thermogenic effect of protein is higher than that of carbs or fat. In a very basic nutshell, your body temp will be warmer and you’ll be staying leaner PLUS protein keeps you more satiated reducing cravings for more carbs.
  3. Ensure you’re simply eating enough. Are you getting enough energy to support your requirements and furthermore are you eating the right macronutrient (Proteins, Carbs, Fats) balance for your body type and goals? Use a food journal like MyFitnessPal to track, measure and adjust if necessary.
  4. Train your nervous system to deal with the cold, that way your bodies response won’t be to to chuck on some new layers of body-fat. For the past few years I have been having cold showers and since then I don’t feel nearly as cold as I used to when the barometer drops! There are a plethora of benefits to having cold showers that I’ll leave you to research yourself or maybe address in another post. PS. Also check out Wim Hof the Ice Man, the dude has defied science and he teaches his methods all over the world, you can even download his app and practice his methods for being non responsive to the cold.

5) ” I don’t have the energy” – Nutrient Deficiency / Poor quality sleep / Lack of sleep / Hormonal Imbalance

There can be a number of reasons as to why your energy levels suck all the time, most common one I believe is the obvious lack of sleep or good quality bio available nutrients in the diet. It can be difficult to get enough nutrients from our foods as soil quality is so poor and depleted. Also if fruits and veggies are picked too soon there is not enough time for nutrient transfer from soil to fruit/veggie. You can get some bloodwork done and see what if any you personally need to supplement with. One common deficiency in winter is Vitamin D which we synthesise in response to direct sunlight – ideally 10-20 minutes to the whole body – daily. Most of us would hardly get this amount in winter time and I take a vitamin D3 Supplement only in winter. Ever wonder why your energy and mood levels improve so much when you get that first dose of Spring sun? That’s the D baby!

6) Are you simply getting enough H20?

Quite often poor energy levels and stroppy moods can simply be the effect of dehydration. It can be harder in winter to drink enough water, we don’t perspire as much and drinking cold water when its cold isn’t all that alluring. Try drinking more herbal teas, warm water, soups and eating more water based veggies like cucumbers, celery, tomato, zucchini etc. In general, I always try to keep a large 1.5L bottle of water around and aim to get through two per day. If you want to find out how much you should be drinking take your weight in kgs and multiply it by 0.033. Eg 80kgs x 0.033 = 2.64L.

7) “I’m too tired” – Are you getting enough good quality sleep?

Sleep quality usually improves during winter as we sleep deeper in a colder climate – ideal room temp being between 13-16 degrees C. If you’re sleeping well that good old 8 hour mark is what you want to aim for. If you’re tossing and turning all night try limiting the use of electronics at night time, make your room as dark as possible, turn the wi-fi and bluetooth off and have a cold shower before bed. You’ll sleep like a baby (Why do we use this term? It just occurred to me that most parents complain that their baby wakes up all throughout the night?) and be ready to smash your morning workout! If you find that your mind wont stop thinking try journalling or getting it out of your head and onto paper. This can work a charm! Supplementing with some magnesium if you’re deficient can greatly improve quality of sleep also.

8) “I just don’t have the time” – Make it a priority. Exercise should be a non negotiable in your life not a luxury.

I don’t even want to go deep on this one at any level. Make time. We’ve all heard it – everyones got 24 hours in their day. Unfortunately exercise is not high on your list of values. Do you need to re-evaluate your values? Most likely… Typically I find most people are only motivated to create change when there is enough pain in their life to fire them into action. That is why people yo-yo all the time. They have not yet created a link between the discipline of regular activity and the long term pleasure of its benefits. We should all know the benefits of regular activity – move it or lose it.

9) “I’m just not motivated”

This one goes back to the WHY reasons and possibly deeper seeded lack of belief in the attainment of your goal. If you knew the sweet taste of success and truly believed in it’s attainment then your habits would most likely reflect that which you are trying to create. Go back to what emotions you are aiming to feel in achieving your fitness goal. Do you see yourself in those new jeans? Go there now. Does it feel good? Or is it empty? It feels good do it, if not re-assess your goal and find what feels good. You’ll most likely aim for more of that and work at it relentlessly…

I hope that something resonates with you at some level from these words and that this winter you remain consistent and persistent in the pursuit of your fitness and health related goals!

Much Love

Coach Chris



To Go Vegan or Not to Go Vegan? That is the question…

Veganism is the fastest growing food movement in the world and here in Australia we are the 3rd fastest growing market in the world for vegan based foods and products. It has been a question that has constantly been plaguing me for years, “Should I go Vegan?” With so much conflicting information about health and studies that say one thing then another that may be backed by big ag, big pharma, dairy corporations etc. you just don’t know what information to trust. Seeing films like What The Health and Cowspiracy (Pro Vegan Docos) then films like “The Magic Pill” (Pro Paleo / Keto) and seeing examples of people seemingly thriving from adopting almost completely opposite styles of eating you’re sort of left scratching your head in a world of indecision.

I always pose the question that if you were stranded on an island with unlimited fruits and veggies and all types of animals roaming around, what would you be comfortable killing to eat? Would you still kill your favourite tasting animal? Or would you make do with the vast amount of fruits and veggies available to you? For me I have no issue with killing a chicken or a fish. I may be judged harshly for that but I just don’t feel the consciousness of all animals is the same, maybe it’s just my conditioning but I feel like some animals do not possess any real emotion and others do. Maybe I haven’t spent enough quality time with a chicken or fish to really get to know one but I believe an insect is not equal to a cow, I believe that there is a pecking order and death is an inevitable part of life, in fact death must occur for soils to be fertile and for healthy plants to grow, but hey that’s just me and my opinion and everybody is obviously entitled to theirs.

I do believe though we are consuming way too much meat, especially meat from heavily processed, unsustainable and inhumane sources. I know, I know vegan person, any killing of animals is inhumane but let’s be honest most native cultures have been meat eaters and if they did not eat meat they simply would not be here today and that is still the case for many cultures around the world where fresh fruits and vegetables are simply not plentiful to feed the local population. Could there be new and innovative ways for some of these cultures to start farming practices so that they are no longer reliant on meat to survive? Possibly… Does the past have to dictate where we are heading as a race of people, No, definitely not. So what’s my point? Maybe I should just bite the bullet, go vegan and stop being a slave to my taste buds, but are vegans truly any healthier than their meat eating counterparts? No I don’t really think so and I think there are far too many factors and variables to control to truly get to the bottom of that question.

Veganism has grown in the US by a whopping 500% since 2014. That’s a staggering amount of new age hippies (jokes guys, take it easy)! There is definitely, without a doubt a movement, an evolution and culture of people pushing towards completely plant based diets. Many even argue that this is the only way forward as a human race as current farming and agricultural practices are simply not sustainable and we will eventually meet our maker if we keep heading down the path we’re on.  Can free range, pasture fed animals truly be sustainable if we simply reduce our consumption and adopt MORE of a plant based diet that may include maybe 20% total intake of animal products and can we save the planet in the process or will it be too late? Personally I think we can. But we all have to play our part and BE THE CHANGE. Eat only pasture fed, free range, organic sources of meat and animal products (get that bone broth inta ya :)) and simply eat alot more fresh fruits, vegetables, seeds and nuts. If we all did that I believe our health would thrive and the planet will do more than just survive also.

Whilst there are still many questions to answer and conflicting evidence supporting both the pros and cons of veganism vs. meat eating, one thing that I know for sure is that the earth will simply get rid of us when she has had enough of our existence and whether we labelled ourselves “Vegan”, “Vegetarian”, “Pescatarian”, “Meat-Eater” or “Breathatarian” (yes that’s a real thing look it up) and whatever sub-cultures we decided to be a part of to feel some sense of purpose and belonging won’t really matter when it’s all said and done. BUT, if we want to live longer on this green earth as a human race we definitely need to make some changes whether that’s taking the full plunge into being a completely plant based eater, practicing more fasting to consume less overall or simply making conscious and mindful choices about where our food is coming from and voting better with our dollars – something has got to give!

Overall I think our belief and our state of consciousness plays a much larger role in our health than we will ever give it credit for hence why one can thrive on keto and one can thrive on plants. I also believe that alot depends on cultural background and heritage as to whether one can truly thrive being completely plant based – you may struggle somewhat if you have eskimo ancestors who relied heavily on fish to get by… One way or another just try and see what works for you and what makes you feel your very best – listen to your body and see what it says 🙂