Update on current requirements for gyms and personal training in Hanoi

Many people have been reaching out to get first-hand information to what degree personal training is possible at the moment in Hanoi, and with what restrictions gyms are allowed to operate at the moment.

Gyms in Hanoi had been officially allowed to re-open start of November, restricted to 50% capacity and only able to allow members to participate who have been fully vaccinated.

Not all commercial gyms have been able to re-open yet, but for example the place where I am mainly based, The Fitness Village (, has resumed operation again.

Also most residence buildings have opened their gyms already and allow their residents to bring trainers from outside in again. At all those locations, 1-on-1 personal training is not restricted at the moment, as long the rules mentioned above are considered.

To assure everyone’s safety and best health, I am monitoring the situation daily, implementing any changed requirements and recommended safety measurements.


Who can benefit from sport rehabilitation training?

Likewise for a person wanting to return to normal health after suffering an injury, or an athlete wanting to bring their sport-specific training to the next level! 💪

A closer look on sport rehabilitation training and who it can be beneficial for? 🧐

Sport rehabilitation is advancing regular fitness training protocols, utilizing them for restoring or maintaining an optimal condition of the musculo-skeletal system. This method can benefit not only your recovery or injury prevention, but also boost your sport-specific skills to the next level. A few examples would be:

✅ You would like to run frequently but chronic knee pain is holding you back
✅ You are recovering from a shoulder injury and would like to get back to play volleyball without limitations
✅ You have chronic back pain and would like to find back to normal health
✅ You are currently physically inactive and experiencing a lack of balance and motor coordination
✅ You would like to improve stability, body posture and endurance to prevent injuries of chronic conditions to happen in the future
✅ You are very focused on weight lifting but regularly injuries are hindering your progression

The examples mentioned above are only a few of a wide range of possibilities that this training method can offer. If you are interested in sport rehabilitation training and what benefit it can have for you specifically, please get in touch directly or check out the detailed section on sport rehabilitation on my homepage:

Nutrition Street Food

Will Street Food Make You Fat?

You can argue that street food contains a lot of fresh and healthy ingredients, which in many cases is true. But street food is also full of fat, sugar, salt, and MSG. It’s also high in calories, and those calories can lead to unwanted weight gains.

The hard truth is that anything can make you fat and street food is no exception. But as with everything else, the poison is in the dosage.

The internet is full of information about diet and nutrition, but there is very little about street food. I offer advice on fitness and nutrition which is relevant to residents of Hanoi, which is why I put so much time into researching local specialties.

My view is that it’s perfectly fine to enjoy street food. Indeed, for many of us it’s one of the highlights of life in Vietnam. The most important thing is to consume it responsibly.

Here are the three biggest tips I can give you when it comes to eating street food:

1. Do Street Food. Don’t Snack

Do you sometimes eat street food for lunch and then find yourself hungry a few hours later? That’s because street food is calorie dense: Even a small amount of food can end up packed with calories.

The danger is when you eat street food and then snack later in the day, probably because you get hungry or consider street food a small meal. The problem is that this extra snack also contains calories.

A street food dish and a snack will easily be more calorific than a well-balanced meal with a lot of vegetables. So if you do have street food as a meal, treat it as a full meal and avoid snacking later.

2. Careful What You Order

The amount of calories in a dish can vary significantly based on your ordering decisions. For example, the calories in an average bowl of pho bo (beef noodle soup) ranges from 400-600 calories.

But the kind of meat you choose can make a big difference. There are many different types of beef to choose from, from lean cuts (tai) to fatty chunks (gau). The difference between these two types can be enormous; perhaps as much as 150 calories per portion. And do you like quay, those fried batter pieces? Be careful as each one is around 90 calories.

Your choices can be the difference between a 500-calorie bowl of pho (20-25% of your daily intake) and a 900-calorie bowl of pho (35-45% of your daily intake).

3. It’s Not Just About Fat

I hear a lot of people worrying about the fat in street food, but it’s a little more complicated than that.

Take that delicious bun cha,for example. You might only be concerned about the fatty grilled patties and pork belly, but unfortunately there is more to consider.

There is a fair amount of added calories due to the amount of sugar used to marinate the meat and flavour the broth. A lot of street food sauces, from bun chato bun bo nam bo, have a lot of sugar, loading on calories to the dish. Always be mindful of those sweet sauces.


Build Healty Habits

Recently I had time for a quick workout at a gym I am not affiliated with. I was resting between sets when a member of that gym approached me for a short chat.

After a few words he said: “I already had my body transformed, but after I got fat again.”

And he continued: “I still have almost 100 more sessions to go before I will be done.”

What I found out later is that this particular gym is specialized in selling quick fix transformation packages rather than helping people to change their lifestyle in the long run.

Of course when working hard it is likely to see some results in a short time, but during the whole progress often people can’t wait to get back to their old diet and routines. But that’s actually one of the biggest mistakes.

You should rather start by creating new healthy habits, small steps a time, and you will keep them with you for much longer.

This does not necessary have to mean that it must take very long time before you can see first noticeable improvements, if you are determined and stay on track with those new habits, results also here will come quickly.

Living a healthy and active life is something that will become a part of your life, something you enjoy doing, very addictive actually.


Restaurant Food VS Home Cooked Meals

Eating out, having take aways or food deliveries are all very accessible here in Hanoi, and the reasonable pricing and promising idea of saving our time for doing groceries and cooking makes them very appealing.

No need to worry about groceries or planning ahead, you can choose from a wide selection of meals and order whatever you feel like in the very moment. But here is the catch, obviously restaurants are making their money by selling us their food, ideally to repeat customers that will come again and again. In order to maximise that, meals must be as tasty as possible, otherwise people are not likely to come back. And what are the easiest and cheapest ways to make food tasting better, LOADS of FAT, SALT, SUGAR, MSG.

Nothing to say against a tasty treat of a food professional here or there, but the main of your meals are always better to be homemade. Only if you cook by yourself you can know which ingredients have been used and assure they are as much as possible fresh, tasty and healthy, and that they have no hidden and unnecessarily added calories.

Positively groceries and the variation of ingredients available here in Hanoi have become increasingly better over the last years, in both quality level and variety. And if you plan and prepare your meals in bulk for a couple of days a time it is actually not that time consuming.

When it comes to restaurants there are as well big differences in terms of quality and there are of course options that are truly using healthy and nice fresh ingredients. I will keep working on that topic and will soon share more posts about places and suppliers I can highly recommend.



The end of Tet holidays marks the end of the annual festive season. A festive season that is quite a bit longer than in other places, since we more or less go directly from Christmas and International New Year into Vietnamese New Year preparations, without ever fully going back to our normal agenda.

It’s the time of the year to enjoy vacation, relax, spend time with your dearest and indulge in comfort food. A well deserved break from your everyday life that should be enjoyed without regrets or guilt.

BUT, all things have to come to an end, and now it is overdue to go back to normality and our healthy habits.





We are approaching the peak of this years festive season here in Hanoi. Only a couple of more days until Tet.

The days leading up to Tet always remind me on the days before Christmas back home in Europe. People have so many things to do and prepare, buying trees, hoarding food, meeting with colleagues, friends and family for year end gatherings. It just feels like everybody is constantly on the run, showing in the traffic worsening day after day and making people even more stressed.

So maybe a good moment to talk a bit about the impact workouts and stress can have on each other.

Many people would already have heard that workouts can help to RELEASE STRESS, and it is true. This works via our hormone system which directly influences our mood and well being. Exercising not only stimulates the production of endorphins, but also reduces the level of stress hormones as adrenaline or cortisol.

But unfortunately the other way around stress can also influence the quality of your workouts:

🚨 Under stress you have a higher risk for injuries, as stress increases muscle tension and slowing down recovery

🚨 Stress can negatively affect your concentration, as it is easy to get distracted thinking about other things, so try to stay focused on what you do, remind yourself to forget about your “ballast” as long you are at the gym

🚨 Also because the distraction could as well affect the quality of your workouts and progress, maybe better to go for a workout that is yet challenging but not bringing you fully to your limits

🚨 Weight loss gets harder, as stress hormones are affecting your metabolism and fat storage negatively

As conclusion, keep coming to the gym during the busy season to release some stress, during that time try to think about nothing else than your workout, and don’t worry if you can’t break your personal record that day.

🔎 One more QUICK TIP 🔎
Try to avoid the gym’s rush-hour when you already feeling stressed, waiting in line for your equipment might work contrary.


Do you want to stay YOUNGER for LONGER?

Retro style comics Superhero old man showing is power strength in vector

My answer to that question is very simple, try to stay active and healthy throughout all your life!

For a long time there has been very little scientific based research on aging and the effect exercising has on aging processes. Only recently a study has been published, focusing for the first time on LIFELONG EXERCISING and its supposed benefits.
The study focused on a group of elderly people that had been active for most of their lives, and it was found that both their cardiovascular fitness and their skeletal muscle was still as strong as other people’s up to 30 YEARS YOUNGER than themselves.

It is commonly known that we get weaker once we age, but the interesting fact is that this loss of muscle and strength is actually a combination of 2 things, aging itself of course, but to an even bigger degree it is caused by a sedentary lifestyle and the lack of using your muscles regularly.

In your 20s your body is a super machine and can cope with almost everything. No workouts, bad eating, not enough sleep, too much alcohol … all no problem. But things start changing after 30, first slowly, so you might not realize it right away. If you carry on with the bad habits you picked up during your 20s, latest in your 40s you will start experiencing the first serious issues, chronic pain in your back or knees, overweight or lack of endurance,… just as a few.

But it does not have to be like that, the earlier fitness and healthy living becomes part of you, the less noticeable aging becomes.
Give it a try, take the first days of the new year as an impulse to get started!



The start of a new year is a perfect time to form NE!W HABITS, no matter if you are thinking about getting more committed to workouts and being physically active, start eating healthier, or basically anything you had in mind for some time to get more serious and persistent about.

The biggest obstacle might seem to be the first step, but being able to stay on track in the long run is presumably even harder. That’s why it is so important to set yourself REASONABLE GOALS.

For example, my resolution for the new year is to provide more info and tips for you guys and to start posting more often again. But I will not set myself the goal to post every 1-2 days, simply because it would not be realistic to stick to it for a longer period. My main aim is to provide information that is relevant and interesting to YOU, and not just random blabla repeated again and again. So I will set myself the goal to post every 1-2 weeks from now on, and will do my best to stay on track.

Please keep me accountable for that 😁
and I would be happy to help YOU stay on track as well.

A great start into 2019 to all of you! 🎆

New Year 2019 2 inverted




Hot summer has come to Hanoi and the sunny weather made the city boiling hot in an instant. Here some tips that can make your workouts during that time more effective and enjoyable.

🌡️ TIMING: try to move your workouts to cooler morning or evening times, try to avoid the heat during lunch times

🌡️ CLOTHES: wear light, airy, light-colored clothes

🌡️ PROTECTION: when training outside use sun screen and wear a hat

🌡️ PRE-COOL: take a cold shower or dip into the pool right before your workout, this will bring down your core temperature to a normal level before getting started and will help to longer keep your performance on a regular level

🌡️ STAY HYDRATED: drink enough water, constantly and throughout the day, and especially during workouts

🌡️ LISTEN TO YOUR BODY: if you start to feel dizzy or too tired better slow down or stop, the heat can have quite some influence on your performance, accept that you might not be able to perform on your highest level those days

Hope this will help, keep up your workouts and enjoy the sunny days, grey skies and rain might come back too soon. 🏊🏼‍♂️⛱️☀️