Archive | Workout

4 Stages of a Proper Workout Session

4 important steps in a proper workout.

Step One: Start with a warm up.

Warm-up is not stretching, as what we have been taught in schools. Start with light cardio work to warm up those muscles. Take about 5 to 10 min of lighter workout at the bike or treadmill.

When you stretch when your muscles are cold, you may end up spraining it.

After the warm up cardio, you may stretch if you wish.

Step Two: Actual Workout

You may now start with more intensive cardio workout. You should not do intensive cardio for more than an hour as it will deplete the critical glycogen storage in your muscles. After cardio, you may perform a bit of weight training.

Step Three: Cool-down- (light cardio)

When you do intensive cardio or weight lifting, lactic acid may accumulate in your muscles. The only way to get rid of it from your muscles- is by movement & circulation- so, just like your warm-up, you do light cardio for 5 to 10 minutes.

Step Four- Stretching.

Experience sore muscles or stiffness after your workout? Or having to endure sore muscles for few days after workout? I strongly recommend that you incorporate stretching in your post workout. Do not underestimate the power of stretching. Incorporate stretching after your workout and you will feel great- you’ll walk easier and it will lessen your muscle sprain or injury. I speak from my personal experience- this really works. For a good cool down, spend about at least 10 minutes.

Start with some leg and hamstring stretches. Do some sun salutation, triangle post, spinal twist, followed by waist and arms stretch. Or else, you can skip Step Three and Four and replace it with yoga/ Pilates class. Warmed muscles work extremely well with yoga and Pilates- you will find yourself sweating like you have never been before.

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Workout Tips to Improve Your Bodybuilding Training

The human body has the capability to remove body waste or excess heat generated during workouts or physical activities. High power and intensive bodybuilding workouts are only made possible for a professional or armature bodybuilder by his or her thermo-regulation capacity. Success in body building and even the health of a bodybuilder is strongly pegged on the efficiency of the individual’s thermo-regulation Sweating excessively can however cause adverse effects to the body builder.

Dehydration consequent from excessive sweating is usually referred to as hyperthermia. Mild dehydration consequent from body water losses can and does impair the cognition processes of a body builder. The impairment usually starts only if the water mass lost is more than 1% of the total amounts in the body. The cognitive impairment as a result of excessive heat during exercises causes loss of integrity in the blood-brain barrier. Hyperthermia is also said to lower the cerebral blood flow rate and to raise the brain temperatures to unsafe levels. However, most of these conditions are very rare and happens only in much decimated instances and even then with mild effects.

Exercises, workouts and diet play in the same playing field in bodybuilding. Remember that 2-3 pound differences might be as a result of having eaten dinner, a lot of body water or even clothes. It is not really a permanent weight gain sometimes. A common error is developing a negative mentality and connotation whenever matters of diet are mentioned. In exercises, the workouts and road works should follow consequent laps, where they should be done as fast as a bodybuilder can, through maintaining breathing control and body posture. When the body is worn out, then the body builder can slow down gradually onto a jog and then a walk until resting pace. Immediately after stopping, it is important to start some stretching exercises rather than stop abruptly and sit down. This ensures that the muscles don’t contract suddenly.

Other exercises like rope jumping, frog jumping can be started immediately after the run so as to amplify the cardio status of the body builder. One funny thing about how a body reacts to exercises is that one part of the body can compete with the other over plasma glucose during the physical exercise. More notable is legs and arms and the one that looses out on the competition usually tires faster. Legs have more blood veins than legs and that is why bicep reps are usually more tiring than bicycle rides for the same period.

Female bodybuilders must go beyond elliptical training and get active, relying on machine exercises such as those done on a treadmill, rowing machine or a stationary bicycle. Although these elliptical exercises are easier on the joints they have minimal stimulation of the heart rate and even fat combustion. It is wiser for the women bodybuilder to prefer hikes, track running, swimming and playing field games over indoor machine exercises. The reason for this is because most machines rely on the momentum created by the body builder at the initial movement and then they keep on moving without offering any resistance to the body weight to propel them forth.

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How To Choose The Best Workout Plan

First you need to identify what your health and fitness goals are. Do you need a healthy weight loss program? Do you want to lose belly fat? Do you just want to gain weight? Are you looking for a good muscle-building workout?

A routine physical is always recommended before you start any workout program. By doing this you could prevent serious injuries, or misfortune due to health related issues you might not even be aware of.

Once you know exactly what it is you want to accomplish, you can start your search for the best workout plan that will meet your needs.

You should know which are your specific problem areas, and choose your workout plan accordingly.

You should also know that when you start losing fat weight, you might be building muscle at the same. This means that you would not necessarily be losing weight, but you will be losing inches.

Weight Training and Benefits

Fat Burning

Weight training is a very effective way to lose fat. It will help you to build lean muscle mass, which is very effective in burning fat. Doing strength training does not mean you will get big like a body builder.

The more weight training you do, the higher your metabolism will be. This will enable you to actually eat more, while maintaining the same weight.

It is all about your diet and controlling your calorie intake. You can compare calories to building blocks. Body builders consume large quantities of calories, thus they are building huge muscles. By reducing your calorie intake, you obviously will not develop big muscles.

It is not just about the way you train, your diet is equally important to achieve your goals.

Bone Density

Weight training or strength training will increase bone density, which will help ward off conditions such as osteoporosis and prevention of stress fractures.

Contrary to the popular belief that running is a good exercise for increasing bone density, running actually promotes muscle breakdown in the body. Weight training, being an anabolic process, helps to promote the building of tissues. This makes it far more beneficial at preserving bone mass, without the constant impact of running.

Prevention of Injuries

In about 80% of all injury cases, the injury is a direct result of a tendon, ligament, or muscle not being strong enough when a stressful force is applied.

Strength training will not only make your muscles get stronger, but you will also work the ligaments and tendons that are connecting bones, muscles and other tissues, thus reducing the chance of injuries when participating on other physical activities.

Cardio Workouts

Cardio exercise is such a strange thing. In theory, it should work so perfectly well for all men and women, but as anyone who has tried it knows, in reality everybody just doesn’t get the same results.

After all, some men and women do cardio 6 hours, 9 hours, or more per week, and still have belly fat to burn. On the other hand, it works just fine for others.

So cardio will work for some people. (It seems to work best in young men, who need the help the least!)

The best cardio workouts are the ones you enjoy because they are the workouts you will actually complete.

Do you enjoy swimming, running, hiking, cycling, tennis….the list goes on and on. Consider this very carefully. The most common reason for people not reaching their fitness goals are because they get bored with the workout regimen and they just give up.

You don’t have to do cardio to lose fat, yet cardio machines can be helpful in assisting to boost your metabolism and burning fat.

Let’s take a look at various machines.

Elliptical Machines.

The biggest reason to choose elliptical machines…bad knees

People with conditions such as osteoarthritis should be able to use these machines for a decent workout without pain. The results though, wouldn’t compare with people using a treadmill or stationary bike.

The Stationary Bike

If you are overweight and can’t support your bodyweight on the treadmill, the stationary bike can be a good option. The bike can be easy on your knees as there will be no impact.

The bike allows you to work very hard with less risk of injury. Running sprints outside or on a treadmill requires a much more extensive warm-up due to the explosive nature of sprinting.

I f you haven’t been training regularly, running sprints or hills might be risky. Many people injure themselves rushing into such activities while they are not ready for it.

The stationary bike is thus a recommended starting point for a cardio program, until you are ready to advance into more challenging activities.

Three more key points about the bike.

a) Stick to the upright version if possible. Using a recumbent bike for intervals, your hips tend to rock too much and your body tries to get into awkward positions to push hard against the resistance.

b) For intervals, increase the resistance against your pedaling and not the speed of your pedaling. It is recommended to keep the RPM between 80-100 and work against a harder resistance.

c) When on the upright bike, sit as upright as possible for the recovery intervals or even stand for some of the work intervals.

Try to avoid the “rounded over” posture as that can be hard on your low back.

The Treadmill

You can burn 16-20 calories per minute of exercise during your workout on a treadmill. That’s a big burn, although only advanced fitness levels can achieve that. Hopefully you fit that category now or you will someday with consistent training and nutrition.

A tip for using the treadmill: Experiment with the incline to prevent tight calves. If you are able to run at more than 10 mph., use a 1% incline to help offset the need for speed.

So as with all types of sprinting, be careful.

Other Machines

Machines also worth mentioning are The Rowing Machine and Stair Master. They can replace other machines for variety and still be effective

Bodyweight circuits are also highly effective for interval training.

Home Workout Programs

Home workout routines are the best opportunity if you are short in time and want to stay at home with your family.

More and more people realize that a gym is NOT required to get into great shape. Some of the best workout plans are available on the internet. A quick YouTube video search will reveal key instructions for almost every exercise known to humanity.

Do your research and pay attention to the following:

  • The program must enable you to achieve your specific goals
  • Investigate and read up on the program. Does the program have a good reputation? Do people achieve results following the program?
  • How time effective is the program? Will it fit into your time schedule?
  • What equipment do you need/ (If any)
  • How qualified is the person who will be advising you?
  • Are there any guarantees?
  • Are there any customer support?

Finally you will need discipline. Many people simply cannot train without a training partner. They need someone to motivate them, to constantly push them. If this is you, you need to be prepared, and organize someone to train with you before you start any new program.

Other people prefer working out on their own. If this is the case, there is nothing stopping you. Set your goals, apply discipline, and be dedicated.

Be very clear about WHY you want to achieve your specific goals. Create a clear mental picture of WHAT you want to achieve, stay focused, and you will achieve success

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The Bean Exercise – How to Achieve Your Fitness Goals by Utilizing the Bean Exercise

Get rocked into shape with the bean exercise. If positioned correctly, its rocking action gives you a total body workout.

It also sculpts and tones your abs, thighs, hips, calves and buttocks without straining your back. It provides complete comfort and a wide range of exercise with its ergonomic S shape.

This is a great form of exercise for beginners as well as professionals, as sit ups and crunches are difficult to do for the first few weeks. You can end up hurting your back or having a neck muscle pulled.

The bean exercise gently rocks you, which gives you the perfect abs anybody would die for. Its’ one motion gives you a crunch, a pelvic tilt and a leg raise at the same time. With the bean exercise you can get the benefits of a stability ball, incline bench and back pain rehab device altogether.

The bean exercise is a versatile workout that delivers maximum results in a short period of time. Since your upper body remains free and the focus is on the belly and legs, you can do other upper body exercises like pull ups, biceps curl etc. and save time.

Instructions are available over the internet on how to do a bean exercise. However, you get a DVD and instruction booklet along with the bean so exercising correctly with a bean should not be a problem. It is easy to use and store as it inflates and deflates with the help of a pump that is included.

It is safe to use, as it is made up of high grade 20 gauges P.V.C puncture resistant vinyl. This is popular with trainers, as they can help their clients achieve perfect abs without much trouble. You can relax your back and body on the bean and it is recommended for people of all ages.

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Get In Shape With A Ghetto Workout – You Don’t Need A Gym Or Fancy Equipment

A popular excuse that is used many times by people looking to get in shape is that they don’t have time or the right equipment to get fit. This is common to hear but if you look at places like the inner cities you will find that a ghetto workout is more than enough to get the body you deserve.

What Is The Ghetto Workout

Several years ago an underground film was made title, “The 24 Hour Ghetto Workout.” In this movie there are several men in urban neighborhoods working out by simply using their environment and their surroundings as a gym. These men lacked equipment but they showed that with using some creativity and objects at their disposal they could turn their neighborhood in to their personal gym.

Although there has been a myth that in order to get in shape you need high-end equipment or a gimmick in an infomercial the truth is that all you really need is your body. Maybe you have been led to believe that bodyweight workouts won’t get you looking fit and lean but the truth is that you will get many benefits by using your body.

Cardio And Strength Training Rolled In To One

Bodyweight workouts like those done in the ghetto workout are beneficial, as they not only help you gain muscle but can help you burn fat. Performing bodyweight exercises require effort and as such will boost your cardiovascular abilities much greater than if you were doing weight training. Sure, you will not have the benefit of doing bench presses but having a top physique takes more than just doing bench presses.

A Sample Ghetto Workout

  • 15 Push Ups
  • 10 Pull Ups or do as many as possible
  • 10 Chin Ups or do as many as possible (excellent for back and biceps)
  • 10 Bodyweight Jump Squats
  • 10 Lunges each leg
  • 10 Hand Stand Push Ups
  • 10 Hanging Leg Raises or Lying Leg Raises or as many as possible

Perform the circuit without stopping and repeat for a total of 3 to 4 times 2 or 3 times a week on non-consecutive days. In the movie guys substitute pull up bars with stop lights or fences. These bars can be used to do pull ups, chin ups and hanging leg raises.

The workout outlined above is very simple but is a good way to get started if you have no equipment or don’t have a gym membership. By performing this circuit of exercises non-stop you will elevate your heart rate and get a cardio benefit as well.

If you want to add some cardio to this workout you can simply run sprints instead of jogging. For a cardio routine to add 3 times a week you can do the following.

  • Walk or Jog For 2 minutes
  • Sprint at a fast pace for 1 minute
  • Walk or jog for 2 minutes
  • Sprint at a fast pace for 1 minute
  • Walk or jog for 2 minutes
  • Sprint at a fast pace for 1 minute
  • Walk or jog for 2 minutes
  • Sprint at a fast pace for 1 minute
  • Walk or jog for 2 minutes
  • Sprint at a fast pace for 1 minute

This type of cardio workout will boost your HGH levels that are key in burning fat and building lean muscle.

As you can see, getting a great body is only a matter of getting creative as they do in the ghetto workout. Soon enough you will look good without having to join a gym or buying fancy equipment.

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Home Gym Workout Tips

Once you know all you need to know about the different aspects of home gym equipment and you’re ready to go and build your home gym empire, it’s time to start thinking about your home gym workout plan. If you’re new to exercise, there are some basic things that you should know prior to beginning your workout plan.

Putting together an effective program isn’t rocket science; however, it does take a little research on your part.

If you’re reading this, you’ve already considered the benefits of creating a home gym space that you can use to do your daily workouts. You’re probably already aware of the time and, in the long run, money a gym can save you. You’re probably pretty excited about the gas you’ll save by not having to drive to the gym, and the flexibility you’ll have to workout whenever you want. Perhaps you’re shy about working out and you’re looking forward to exercising in the privacy of your own home.

These are all great reasons to start a gym at home, and they’re the reasons that home gyms are becoming so popular today.

There’s just one bump in the road that many gym junkies encounter every now and then – motivation!

Once you’ve bought the equipment and brought it home and you’ve started a basic workout, it’s easy for the novelty to wear off, at which point your $1,500 treadmill becomes a $1,500 clothes rack. If you’re concerned that your dedication to fitness will wane if you go the way of the home fitness centre, please read on. I’m here to offer you some basic workout advice and some tips to stay motivated in a home environment!

If you’re a workout novice, there are a few things that you should understand before investing in a home gym and embarking on a workout program. There are three main focuses that should have attention in every workout program…

  • Cardiovascular fitness
  • Strength training
  • Flexibility training

If you’re serious about getting fit and reaping all of the benefits of a fit lifestyle, it’s important that you include each of these components into your fitness plan.

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Total Body Workout Plan

Here is a total body workout plan that is easy and fun, based on your own time, lifestyle and interests. There are three very important elements to this plan, which are based on you, the individual, and not club memberships or machines.

1. Basic weight lifting, muscle toning exercises. This can be very straightforward and simple, and does not have to involve a gym membership and hours of work each week. All you really need are a pair of dumbbells or strength resisting bands.

Workouts with your weights can be very short and still remain very effective. By short I mean 15 to 20 minutes max. Usually the long weight training sessions are the least effective due to over training which leads to zero results and increased injury.

2. Next, pick a sport or activity which interests you. This is very important and makes the difference between productive life changing workouts, and failed workout lifestyles. We’re not put on this earth to just walk like a zombie on a treadmill. We should actively engage or train for sports and activities which we truly enjoy doing. Learn the routines and exercises necessary to excel in your activity, and have some fun becoming a healthier individual.

3. Have a backup exercise plan or try new activities. Sometimes you may not be able to practice your sport or activity, so to stay in shape you should plan on backup exercising such as walking around the block or bicycling. Or, you could experiment with training for new activities or sports.

Learning to train for your hobby sport or activity can be a great way to get in shape. Combine it with a basic weight lifting regimen, and you’ll have yourself a well rounded, healthy, total body workout plan.

You can consult books or online workout plans which can show you how to train for whatever activity or sport you are interested in.

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Is the Shaun T Deluxe Insanity Workout Worth Getting?

Shaun T recently came out with a new workout called Shaun T’s Insanity Workout. He also made available a deluxe edition of the workout. What is the difference between the regular and the deluxe?

First of all the regular insanity workout comes with 10 DVD’s, a fitness guide, nutrition plan and tracking tools. None of the workouts on the first original workouts require the use of weights or resistance bands. Shaun T uses body resistance for the workouts. The 10 DVD’s cover every part of your body, from you arms, to legs, to core.

So if the first 10 DVD’s are complete why would you need the extra 3 DVD’s that come in the deluxe package? Well I will simply let you know what comes in the deluxe package and let you make up your mind as to whether you will need it or not.

Inside the Deluxe Insanity Workout.

It comes with 3 extra DVD workouts. The first of the workouts is called Max Interval Sports Training, next is called Insane Abs and last is the Upper Body Weighted Workout.

Max Interval Sports Training is an extremely difficult training system that Shaun T has used to train professional athletes. This workout is no joke. It is extremely difficult to do. It is a step above all the other 10 DVD’s in the normal workout.

Insane Abs is similar in its difficulty to the Sports Training. There are plenty of abdominal exercises in the first 10 DVD’s, but none are as complete or as difficult as this.

Upper Body Weighted Workout is Shaun T’s only DVD that uses weights. He shows you his techniques for using weights to achieve the upper body that most people desire.

All in all it is a very good thing to be working out and bettering your body. Whether it is using Insanity or going to the gym or some other form of exercise, just make sure you get out and do it.

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Lower Ab Workout Tips and Exercises

Many people dream of achieving six-pack abs, but this is not always an easy task to accomplish. It takes time and dedication in addition to a routine diet and exercise plan in order to make any lower ab workout a success. If you want to achieve great six-pack abs, then keep the following tips in mind.

1. Diet and Exercise

When it comes to losing weight or toning muscles, diet and exercise are of equal importance. If you want to lose weight or build muscle not only do you need to exercise in order to burn calories and tone muscles, but you need to lower the number of calories you take in each day. A key component for successful lower ab workouts is a low-fat diet. If you need help coming up with a diet plan you can stick to, consult your physician. In addition to a low-fat diet, you need to get plenty of regular aerobic exercise in additional to the ab-focused exercises of your lower ab workout.

2. Stick to Proven Lower Ab Exercises

There are many workout plans and products out there these days and it is easy to fall for “get slim quick” schemes. Do not fall to the temptation of the latest exercise product you see on an infomercial – try out some of these exercises to see which ones work for you. Then you can create your own lower ab workout, suited specifically to your needs.

Reverse Crunches

Many people are familiar with crunches as a staple of the lower ab workout, but reverse crunches are also extremely effective. Lie on your back with your hands at your sides then slowly raise your legs straight up in the air. Exhale as you bend your knees and curl your lower body in toward your chest. Inhale as you return your legs to the beginning position. Do not forget to keep your abdominal muscles contracted as you perform this exercise.

Lying Scissors

To perform this exercise, begin by lying flat on your back with your legs outstretched and your hands placed under your lower back. You may find it more comfortable to perform this exercise on an exercise mat, but if you do not have one you can do just as well without it. Exhale slowly as you raise your legs in the air, bending them slightly, then inhale as you return them to the mat.

Side Crunches

To perform side crunches, begin by lying on your back with your knees bent, twisting at the waist so that your legs lie on top of each other to one side of the body, keeping your shoulder blades flat on the floor. Exhale as you slowly lift your upper body off the ground, contracting your abdominal muscles. Repeat several times then switch your body around and perform the exercise on the opposite side.

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A Serious 6-Week Mass Building Routine For Serious Lifters Who Wants To Gain Mass Quickly

How to get most of this muscle building workout program?

Remember, that these reps, sets and exercises gives you only the guidance of your workouts, always adjust the workout programs according to your own experience and level. Never follow any of the program exactly as it shown on the paper. Beginners should do slightly less sets and exercises than this workout plan reveal. Keep the focus on using progressively heavier weights.

How the program works?

– This workout program follows the 3-day split routine. Split your workouts into a three separate muscle groups, that the total

– In the first workout, you fully train your legs and abs. Legs consist of big muscles and it is easy to add mass to your legs through heavy compound movements, therefore they should be trained in their own workout sessions.

– In the second workout, you are hitting the chest, shoulders and triceps. These are the muscles, that are primarily targeted in pushing movements, like bench press, military press and dips. They are also so called mass building exercises.

– Instead of doing pushing movements separately for each muscle group, you are performing them all in one workout session and this guarantees the fully recuperation to your pushing muscle groups.

– In the third workout, you are hitting the rest of your upper body, like back, trapz, biceps and rear deltoids. These movements are primarily involved in pulling your arms towards your torso.

– This method of training is ideal, because you are hitting all the muscles separately in one workouts session, that are directly involved with the particular target muscle group, such as back and biceps, where the biceps are working as the assist muscle along with the back. You are now maximizing rest for each muscle.

– Train with heavy weights, using fewer reps (6 – 10) for larger muscle groups, like upper back, legs and chest and higher reps (8 – 15) for smaller muscles, like biceps and shoulders. For an exception, you can go as far as up to 20 reps with the muscles, like calves, forearms and abs.

– Adjust the workout days and rest days according to your own schedule, but make sure, you are training four times in each week.

– You will train the whole body four times during a three week cycle, following 2 on, 1 off, 2 on, 2 off cycle. Below is an example of 3-weeks workout schedule:

WEEK 1.

Monday: Legs, Abs

Tuesday: Back, Biceps

Wednesday: Rest

Thursday: Chest, Shoulders, Triceps

Friday: Legs, Abs

Saturday: Rest

Sunday: Rest

WEEK 2.

Monday: Back, Biceps

Tuesday: Chest, Shoulders, Triceps

Wednesday: Rest

Thursday: Legs, Abs

Friday: Back, Biceps

Saturday: Rest

Sunday: Rest

WEEK 3.

Monday: Chest, Shoulders, Triceps

Tuesday: Legs, Abs

Wednesday: Rest

Thursday: Back, Biceps

Friday: Chest, Shoulders, Triceps

Saturday: Rest

Sunday: Rest

Workout plan to build muscle

WORKOUT 1 – Legs,Abs

Leg Extensions 2 x 20 (Pre-exhaust sets)

Squats 4 x 6-10 (Last set to failure)

Leg Presses 3 x 8-10

Hack Squats 2 x 10 (Burning sets)

Straight-leg Deadlifts 3 x 10-12

Leg curls 2 x 12

Seated Calf Raises 3 x 15-20 (30-60s rest)

Standing Calf Raises 2 x 20

High Pulley Cable Crunch 3 x 15-20 (30-60s rest)

Hanging Leg-Raises 3 x 15

WORKOUT 2 – Chest,Shoulders,Triceps

Incline Bench Press 4 x 6-10 (Last set to the failure)

Flat Dumbbell Press 3 x 8-10

Cable Crossover Flys 3 x 10-12

Military Dumbbell raises 3 x 8-10 (Last set to the failure)

Dumbbell side laterals 3 x 10-12 (Burning sets)

Barbell Shrugs 2 x 12-15

Lying triceps extensions 3 x 8-10

Triceps Pushdowns 3 x 10

One Arm Dumbbell Extensions 2 x 10-12

WORKOUT 3 – Back, Rear Delts, Biceps

Deadlifts 3 x 6-10

Barbell Rows 3 x 8-10

Pulldowns 3 x 10

Seated Cable Rows 2 x 10

Bent Over Dumbbell Raises 2 x 10-12

Barbell Curls 3 x 8-10

Alternate Dumbbell Curls 3 x 10

Preacher Dumbbell Curls 2 x 10-12 (Burning Sets)

Hammer Curls 2 x 10-12

These examples are for intermediate and advanced trainers. If it’s too light or too heavy, feel free to adjust sets and reps according to your own approach and experience level!

Burning sets are the way to contract the target muscle extremely hard and doing it in a very controlled and smooth motion. Feel the blood rush in your muscles and feel the pain!

Remember to warm-up your target muscles properly before the heavy workout and do a light stretching for each muscle group

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