The Coach Corner with Matt Gleed

We wanted to offer some expert advice to inspire, support and give you confidence that your workouts are going in the right direction. The focus for this hypothetical client is one that is probably very common to many of you. We start with setting the goal and background of the client.


So, who is our client today?

Male, 50 years old. Completely new to exercise. He has seen “all these young people doing workouts with no clothes on and shouting about how they couldn’t walk after with a laughing emoji” and it’s basically put him off. He use to play sport years ago but then with work and family taking time up, he now watches a lot of sport but normally with food or drink in his hand. Covid has given him a scare and he’s now recognising how unfit he is and thinks getting fitter so he can play games with the grand children would be nice.


Our coach and his ‘mission’

We asked Matt Gleed an award-winning coach with over 20 years’ experience to share his thoughts on how to bring our client to the gym safely, guiding him to regular visits with knowledge of supporting exercises.


The focus of the problem is perception of the gym floor look and feel, getting this guy in the door regularly is the main aim. If I work him too hard he’s sore and put off, my focus straight away is about balancing a few pieces of kit and making sure he knows what he’s doing. I would take a journey approach here starting off with just cardiovascular equipment for the first couple of weeks and then adding some seated resistance machines then onto some functional training to start getting him on and off the floor, with the motivation turning to lifting your grandchild up, carrying them around and get ready for cries of ‘again, again’.

The Workout


Weeks 1-4
Elliptical or Cross Trainer 10min 60-80rpm low level
Cycle 10min 60-80rpm low level
Treadmill 10min walking on a small incline
*30min of cardiovascular work is going to be a lot more than the client is used to and will be the base to then add the strength and functional to. 10min bouts of activity is not only the recommendation from the World Health Organisation but makes the pattern of change to be scheduled during the day and then built on.
Weeks 5-8
Elliptical or Cross Trainer 10min 70-90rpm low/moderate level
Cycle 10min 70-90rpm low/moderate level (Start to pay attention to the distance achieved)
Treadmill 10min walking on a small incline or a 1min run & 1min walk repeated for 10min
Chest Press 3 x 10
Lat Pulldown 3 x 10
Leg Extension 3 x 10
Leg Curl 3 x 10
Weeks 9-12

Elliptical or Cross Trainer 10min 70-90rpm moderate level
Cycle 10min 70-90rpm moderate level (Start to pay attention to the distance achieved)
Treadmill 10min walking on a small incline or a 1min run & 1min walk repeated for 10min (Start to pay attention to the distance achieved)
Chest Press 3 x 10
Lat Pulldown 3 x 10
Leg Extension 3 x 10
Leg Curl 3 x 10
Plank 3 x 10-30sec
Battle Rope Waves 3 x 30sec
Kettlebell Swing 3 x 10
Lunge with Rotation 3 x 10

Why not check out Matt’s other coach corner? Getting to the Start Line – check it out!

Author Bio:

Matt Gleed Headshot

Matt Gleed is a fitness professional representing several leading brands in the commercial fitness industry. With 20 years’ experience working directly with clients and 10 of those years teaching Personal Trainers, he has established himself as an experienced fitness professional who regularly contributes expert comment to newspapers, magazines and writes monthly columns in industry publications, with occasional national TV appearances. Winner of the UK Fitness Awards, Fitness Contributor of the Year in 2019.

Matt’s work in professional sports has led him to work within 4 Premier League Football Clubs, International athletes, Professional Triathletes, Tennis Players and a Formula One Motor Racing team.


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