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9 things to look out for as you start a new exercise regime and health transformation programs

Your body, metabolism and energy will be going through a host of changes. Your body is your balance sheet or scorecard of your habits and actions in your life, and what you put in or take out shows up in our body, on our body or excreted out.

Here are 9 of the most common changes we see, and what causes them and what you can do about it.

Your body, metabolism and energy will be going through a host of changes. Your body is your balance sheet or scorecard of your habits and actions in your life, and what you put in or take out shows up in our body, on our body or excreted out.

Here are 9 of the most common changes we see, and what causes them and what you can do about it.



In the first few days of taking up an active lifestyle with a different level of intensity and regularity, you will notice an increase in happiness and energy, especially if your exercise routine happens in the mornings.

This is because your body begins to release endorphins and the happy hormone serotonin feeling so up to life and energy…



And then that ‘Happy-Snappy’ phase may all flip after 4 to 5 days or for some between 10 to 14 days and for many – again, around week 5, there may be a feeling of fatigue, tiredness, low energy – sometimes headaches and mild migraines.

This is simply an ‘Adjustment phase’ as your body moves into ketosis – or rather, the sourcing of energy from glucose to fat cells (ketones) and you want to simply be with this – allow it to hover around for a day or two, and then you’re good once you’ve acclimatised.

Nothing to do differently, keep your routine regular with ample sleep and regular rest days and loads of water 3 to 4 litres a day in total. Have you felt your lull yet? Has it passed?

You’ve done well if you’re through it – and if you never experienced it, you don’t need to look out for it. You’re doing great!


Fitbanker - fatigued? Nothing to do differently, keep your routine regular



Any new and increased level of intensity in physical activity means an increased demand in oxygen and blood circulation to our muscles, and that at times means our bodies have less oxygen/blood flow to our brain.

That reduced oxygen to our brain sometimes shows up as a headache. We also get headaches when we unintentionally hold our breath during the heaving part of an exercise or weight lift, or during a body pump class – and this minimises oxygen to our brain.

The solution: always breathe as normal, even under strain, even when planking, when stretching and when heaving. Keep your water consumption high for the day – 3 to 4 litres a day.



Many participants share how their weight has been static but they now fit into their old clothing! This is a good thing isn’t it, and this is because the first place fat gathers and gets stored is around the tummy, hips and thighs – and each of us have this in different ratios.

Likewise, one of the first things we experience as we begin an active lifestyle (from a previously inactive or too routine active lifestyle) is that we first shed some weight in these areas, while also adding muscle or water weight, and so weight may balance out but you’re getting healthier, fitter and looking it.

Is this you? Did you experience this? What do you do? Keep going and stick to your habits and actions. Your weight loss and fat percentage reduction is a by-product and is what really matters, so stay in action, check in and track your progress – you’re doing great!


Fitbanker - waist reduction before weight reduction? You're doing great!



Not that these are normal but they are more common than you think. The first thing to do is check any new clothing detergent or soap that you use. These products can cause allergic-type reactions in some people.

If you rule out detergent, soap, or any other lotions, then you should consider a possible allergic reaction during exercise due to the release of HISTAMINES. It’s not that you are allergic to exercise, but rather that you may be experiencing a biological response during or after you work out that mimics an allergic reaction. Here’s what could be happening and why.

During exercise, histamines, the proteins involved in autoimmune responses like an allergic reaction to pollen or dust are released. People who are sensitive to histamines can experience rashes, itching, and other allergic symptoms during exercise just like you are describing.

Most of the time, the rashes appear on the chest and thighs, but they can appear on the neck, back or arms, too.

Sometimes exercise also reacts with food allergies or medications, for example, antibiotics, pain medications, sedatives, tranquilizers, and diuretics, to cause the problem. The problem typically occurs more in cold weather than warm.

If the problem bothers you so much that you can’t stand it, or it’s not resolving on its own, then you should ask your doctor about using a topical ointment to stop the itching, or taking an over-the-counter antihistamine like Benadryl 30-60 minutes before exercising.

If over-the-counter antihistamines make you sleepy, your doctor can prescribe a non-sedating antihistamine. You should not take over-the-counter or prescription medications for this problem without speaking with your doctor.

Over time, this should also subside.


Fitbanker - you're not allergic to exercise



“I’m stuck. I haven’t lost weight for 2 weeks, but I feel great” we often hear. Why does this happen? It’s because your level of strength has grown, and your tolerance level to muscle soreness, pain, endurance has increased.

You’re in a ‘New Comfort Zone’ and this is not a good place to chill out. What to do: (1) Interrupt your routine. We give you an interrupt program in week 5, and/or (2) change everything up: instead of 30 min basic walk you may do regularly, make it a 5 min run and 5 min walk and do that 3 to 4 times on/off over a 30 to 40 min session, swap walking for HIIT class as part of your cardio goals, and so on.



Four to five weeks into your new life, you’re now in a new health regime, and you find that your body is sourcing energy more efficiently and keeping your blood sugar and insulin levels at a steadier level, rather than up and down spikes in energy from sugar and high GI foods.

What this means is you don’t experience a carb crash after that supper, which was previously a heavy pasta, pizza or rice and curry! Instead you’re up and active after a meal – and that’s good!

But oh wait, on the 5th weekend is your trek & treat – and you can eat what you want for a day. Our invite is: observe your energy levels any time from 30 mins after a meal to 1h30 mins after a meal.

Do you feel really sleepy, lethargic and hate life? Welcome to the old world. Let us know if and when you do. What to do: eat clean and green and manage your macros staying in balance across your day, you’ll love life when you’re in control of your foods, and not them controlling you!


8. D.O.M.S.:

Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness – this is the severe muscle soreness that you experience the morning after or in some cases two days after an intense training exercise, leg day or your first Body Pump class.

And it lasts longer and feels a bit more severe than regular muscle soreness. What to do? Firstly, don’t give up your gym routine: DOMS does eventually contribute to muscle growth.

You do however minimise experiencing this over time, by staying regular and growing your muscle strength, allowing for a day of rest is ideal.

In addition, a pre-warm up, stretch and stretch after exercise helps minimise this. Protein, L-glutamine, Magnesium also all help with muscle recovery and tissue repair. Oh, ice packs and ibuprofen help too!


Fitbanker - no carb crash after supper?


9. SHIT, this is the last point of this blog?!

Oh well, yes – many of us will experience a change in the efficiency of our digestive system – as a result of new activity levels, increased metabolism and healthier food.

Some of the junk comes out, most of the foods we eat have their nutrients absorbed quicker and then we ‘release leftover change’ and you’ll find you’re a lot more regular! Once a day, sometimes twice! This is nothing to worry about, and it is normal at the start to have a ‘transition phase’ – our poo begins to look like a hybrid of whisky-shits, period poop and ‘Stripe’ – that evil green gremlin!

Fitbanker - write the number 9

You’re simply adjusting – and you’ll soon be creating amazingly shaped and tough textured poop doodles, you can easily write the number ‘9’ just like I did. You’ll be so inspired you’d wanna bog about it, sorry – blog about it!


Ronnie Rich9 things to look out for as you start a new exercise regime and health transformation programs
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