Tim Robards: How to get a body like The Bach My fit life
Tim Robards is best known as Australia’s first ever “bachelor”. But when he’s not stealing hearts, Robards works as a chiropractor, a health and well being educator and is the founder of The Robards Method. We caught up with the Bachie to find out all about his simplified approach to healthy living.
What is your health philosophy?
When it comes to eating, my philosophy is about common sense. It’s about listening to your body to know what it needs. You don’t necessarily have to be restrictive to be healthy; you just have to be balanced. Try swapping ice-cream and berries for natural Greek yoghurt and berries. Or if you’re dying for ice-cream, next time you go past gelato, go for the kids’ cone. Usually you just want a little taste but you set yourself up for disaster if you buy the double cone with extra toppings!
What is your daily fitness routine?
I try to do something each day that makes me sweat. I mix swimming with running, sport, calisthenics (The Robards Method), yoga, weights in the gym and classes. When the mornings are dark and cold, I spend more time warming up, especially using a heat therapy rub to get my muscles moving. In winter your muscles are colder, so you’re more likely to strain them, so dynamic stretching for your hamstrings before running for example, is really important. I learnt the hard way when I was younger and had the odd hamstring strain. Once you do this once you don’t want to go back there. That extra 10 to 15 minute warm up routine is worth it to avoid the six plus weeks you are out of action due to a strain or tear.
What’s your favourite exercise?
Actually most of my favourite exercises are aimed at increasing mobility rather than purely building muscle. You can have the biggest muscles in the world but if you don’t move correctly, then you may actually be limiting yourself physically and more prone to injury.
A favourite shoulder exercise of mine is the ‘En Garde’ exercise which is great for strengthening your shoulder. It’s called that because it looks like you’re drawing your sword, moving your arm up across your body to above your head using a theraband for resistance. Again, for these muscle groups, I like to use heat therapy and massage to increase blood flow.
What do you eat on a general day?
A common day for me may begins with some regular intermittent fasting (eating for around an eight hour window each day, for example 12:00 pm to 8:00 pm), so I start with a coffee, which is not technically fasting but I love it and it fills that empty space in my stomach without effecting the benefits of an increase in glucagon (from the fasting). Around 11:00 am or 12:00 pm I will usually have something that contains eggs. Either an omelet, poached eggs on sourdough with sides or my local ‘breaky bowl’ full of greens. At around 2:00 pm or 3:00 pm I will ideally go for a big salad with plenty of protein or some of last night’s left over dinner. I may put the left over protein (whatever that is) with a fresh salad or something I make up on the day. I try and include lots of different colours in my salads and a splash of olive oil.
A common dinner for me, if I’m not eating out, is making use of my little Webber barbeque. I grab a heap of veggies I can cook on it and a nice juicy steak or chicken. I’ll usually throw on capsicum, corn, zucchini, squash, sweet potato and mushrooms (sometimes with cream cheese in them).
Snacks – these days I will grab some fruit, handful of nuts, the odd health bar (but most are considered a dessert) or whip up a protein shake with a more natural protein like RAW with berries.
What’s your favourite healthy recipe?
One of my favourite dishes is salmon and avocado on gluten-free corn fritters. Fats are an excellent source of slow burning energy that will keep you fuller for longer, and to burn fat you need to eat anti-inflammatory fats. The fritters are delicious ways to give you the energy you need to kick start an energetic weekend.
What’s your food splurge?
A splurge to me would be something where I know I’m going to have to balance out another meal to compensate. If you’re splurging all the time, it becomes very hard to keep up and a plunge becomes a big stress on your body. If it’s controlled and not excessive for your body, then you shouldn’t feel guilty about it. My favourite splurge would be Anna’s mum’s cooking #judesfood. Judy loves cooking up a storm once a week and we go all out on a two or three course meal that usually tickles the sweeter taste buds and has a dollop of cream. One of my favourites is her fruit salad tart. Don’t be fooled by the fruit salad title, its devilishly good!
Chia seed smoothies are a great way to get a healthy fix with the taste of a treat.
What other upcoming projects are you working on?
Other than working to help people get fit and healthy through The Robards Method, I’ve teamed up with Deep Heat Pro to help launch their new range of products aimed at muscle preparation, prevention and injury prevention. As a chiropractor, I see so many ‘weekend warriors’ come in with pulled muscles that can be easily prevented through regular training and proper warm up routines. Your body can change significantly from your teenage years, and you can’t get away with going hard whenever you want to. Work out what muscle groups you find affect you the most – for most people, it’s their hamstrings. Carefully stretch these groups before you start training and add in heat rub massage when you can, and you’ll keep moving, for longer.
Is there a motto that you live by?
To thine own self be true – was given to me on a cup when I was born. I always come back to that when times get tough… However for day to day, life is better in balance!
What gives you the greatest joy – in your sport and also in life and what are the most challenging aspects?
Knowing that I can take what I’ve learned about the human body, health and fitness and help others achieve their goals really gives me a lot of joy. People often send in pictures of the progress they’ve achieved through The Robards Method and it is great to see the difference it can make to their lives.
The challenge is to keep pushing myself to learn more and to push myself further. It’s very easy to become complacent or busy with other aspects of life but if you live with balance then you’re much more productive and driven.
What mental training do you do?
I am always learning new things and challenging myself with continuing education, philosophy and meditation. When it comes to mixing the mental training to complement the physical, I remember back in my footy days being in the locker room, harnessing the nerves and excitement from the team and how that got me into the PRO zone.
For me, it’s usually about a great playlist or partnering up with a mate. It’s just like any other activity you do that requires routine – sleeping, work and eating. Having a physical routine, and keeping the end goal front of mind, means you’re mentally preparing yourself for what you’re about to do and having it as routine, means your less likely to opt out. It doesn’t mean the actual exercise needs to be repetitive, but having a pre-workout snack, warming up, pressing play on your play list and then warming down, will help you mentally prepare every time.
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