The first time you walk into a gym, it becomes that you have a long way to go in being perceived as particularly ‘macho’ or even close with your wiry arms. Of course, you might not have been the only one because I’ve also been there.
Well, it wouldn’t matter if you’re John Mayer with that silky smooth guitar picking and strumming style and stunning voice of his… but I’m sure that he won’t be reading this blog between his busy touring schedule or indulging in flings with some of Hollywood’s big names.
But I digress…
So what should you do if you’re not macho yet, and aren’t sure of dealing with weights yet?
Try a workout without weights, yessirree…
Any questions? I’m sure there are…
Reasons why you should Workout without Weights
Well, the first question you might ask is why in the world one would want to try a workout without weights, as it is the best way to gain strength and muscle. But very simply, there are several reasons why you might want to do so…
For one, if you are tired of paying for your gym membership in these times or even weight-phobic, especially as a beginner. Maybe you don’t have the time to head out to the gym or even don’t have the money either… which also rules out the idea of a home gym.
So, no matter what your reason might be, things work out for the best. And if you wonder why I’ve conveniently thrown this cliche in and are on the verge of asking me to validate this statement with something concrete. And so, here goes…
Firstly, the golden age of bodybuilding is over, and unless you are planning to repeat Arnie’s success (which is hardly likely!), you don’t need a costly gym membership or even a home gym to get “toned.”
Secondly, it’s FREE… how about that? Need I say more…
Thirdly, you’ll be using weights but of a different kind – your body and the force of gravity, which your body will not be able to differentiate from normal weights that are used.
Now, with that out of the way, you might wonder where to begin in this mirage of exercises with or without equipment, so without further ado, let’s look at some exercises that you can try as a part of a workout or even if the above doesn’t apply to you, use these exercises as a warm-up before you begin your routine with weights.
Exercises to try without Weight
While you read the list of exercises at this link, you’ll be surprised how often they have come up in conversation, even if you’re not a fitness junkie. Of course, if you’re captivated with the art of building muscle and want to get going without using weights, then you can check this link for the best techniques and exercises that will help you build muscle over a period of time.
And yes, it’s “macho” enough… macho enough to help you move on to the next level, especially if you’re a beginner.
Dumbbell Workouts – 4 Tips to Avoid Injury and Embarrassment
Dumbbell Workouts – 4 Tips to Avoid Injury and Embarrassment
Learn the right technique:
When you lift weights, even if they’re light dumbbells, the wrong technique could cause sprains and muscle pulls. You may not be able to afford a personal trainer or even a gym membership, but there are websites that offer tutorials and tips on the right way to work out with dumbbells. You could also learn the right way to use dumbbells from friends and family members who are workout enthusiasts.
Don’t overdo the weight:
It’s ok to be enthusiastic and eager to work your muscles, but if you start out with the heaviest ones, you’re going to end up either dropping them on your feet or spraining a muscle trying to lift more than you can. So start out with the lightest dumbbells you can find before moving on to heavier alternatives.
Do the “drop set”:
If you’re working out with heavy dumbbells and cannot complete your reps because your muscles are aching, put them down and use a lighter pair that you have at hand. This prevents wear and tear and injury on your muscles.
Pick them up correctly:
When you’re picking up the dumbbells or laying them down, don’t bend from your waist down; instead, go into a half squat and lift them using your thighs for leverage. If you use your back, you could end up with a serious injury if the dumbbells are too heavy.
Choose dumbbell exercises that you’re comfortable with and which tone and strengthen the parts of your body that need firming up. Once you’ve learned a certain set of exercises, it’s easy enough to go through them for just 30 minutes or so every day. However, remember to follow the right safety measures when performing your dumbbell workouts; keep in mind the tips to avoid injury, which could put you out of action.
This guest post is contributed by Maryanne Osberg, who writes on the topic of RN to MSN Online Programs. She can be reached at mary.anne579(AT)gmail(DOT)com.
Kettlebell Weights – Even better than throwing ‘shit’ around…
It’s a tall order to be calm and dignified all the time. Obama spooks me out for this very reason. I’m not being judgmental of the man here but he’s really chilled out. Don’t suppose he has any moments when he throws things around because he’s just pissed like normal human beings.
Almost everyone of us have been in one of these episodes where you throw and break things because you’ve just about had enough. And you can only appease that anger by destroying some thing, regardless of who valuable it might be at the time…
While there are some of you who might deny being this way, there are those who are – and it’s time that you considered using kettlebells, if only to mimic the quick “throwing movements” that come with this form of exercise.
Kettlebell Weights – Even better than throwing
Even though most people think that kettlebell weights are the latest fitness fad, nothing can be further from the truth. Actually, Russians have been using them years together now, and which was passed on to the military and their Olympians as well.
Of course, Hollywood has taken this form of training and made the most of it and the list of names goes on – Lance Armstrong, Sylvester Stallone, Kim Basinger, Jennifer Lopez, the entire cast of “300” and the legendary Bruce Lee.
And not surprisingly, the US Secret Service and the US Navy Seals have taken it up in training as well.
But what you should keep in mind especially if you’re one of the try-anything types, this form of exercise is not for those with a strained back or shoulders or even a weak core.
One good reason for this is because it is vigorous exercise…
But for those of you who can (and should) take a shot at this type of training, you should know that you can train with these cannonball-like objects with increasing weights of 1/2 a pood (16 kg) such as 8kg, 16kg, 24kg, 32kg, 40kg and 48kg.
Just the mere mention of the word pood should tell you how rich in tradition this form of exercise really is… with its origins in Russia, of course, and yes… as old as vodka itself!
Kettlebell Weights Training: An Overview
Perhaps the best part about working with Kettlebells is that it mimics everyday movements as opposed to other workouts that you find these days. According to some people who have tried this workout, you’re done in 50 minutes or so, in comparison to those who pound away at those weights for two or three weights, way after your testosterone levels are depleted.
But what are the benefits, you might ask?
With a focus on strength, flexibility and cardiovascular training, need I say more?
If that’s not enough, the shoulders, lower back and legs get an excellent workout, thanks to even the most basic exercises such as the swing, snatch and clean & jerk which work on almost all muscles in the body.
And if you are interested, follow this link in order to know more about kettlebell exercises…
So much for being able to throw (your) weight around… huh?
Cardio Music – A Good Companion During Workouts?
For a while now, I’ve noticed that whenever I put on a football match or some music while writing, it seems to either help or speed up the process while not hampering quality.
In fact, football players in the United States have been known to listen to classical music while in practice sessions. As bizarre as that is, it not only helps athletes to focus and do well but also students as well as those who take exercise seriously.
Again this depends on the type of workout you choose – if it’s yoga, then the music is definitely Indian, if weights, then some rock would do just fine but if you’re into cardio, then there are digital tracks that one can obtain, and can be found in the genre of cardio music.
The Importance of workout
While anaerobic exercise is important for building strength and increasing energy which is usually built through exercises and that lasts for short bursts.
While men mostly fancy weight lifting, women enjoy a good cardio workout yet it must be said that both these types of workouts are necessary.
Almost anyone would know that cardio involves using the lungs for much longer than you would in weight training. Of course, whether you use a treadmill, stationary cycle, indoor rower or just jog in the neighborhood, this is cardio exercise and require one’s lungs to pump energy for you to last as long as you would.
And trust me, a little cardio music definitely helps in giving you that extra boost when you are exercising whether it’s cardio or even weight training, where one can use machines as well as dumbbells.
Interestingly, there’s also another form of exercise that combines both types: kettlebell weights. Yes, they combine the benefits of both cardio and weight lifting workouts.
Yet there’s nothing like using music to fuel you on when performing any of these workouts, and so let’s look at where we can find cardio music.
So,where Can One Find Cardio Music?
Of course, you can look for workout videos at your nearest store but if one looks over the internet, you will find a treasure trove of cardio music that you couldn’t even imagine.
For starters, if you don’t want to buy anything just yet, sample a few videos from Youtube. Here’s a video that I like very much… and just excellent for those who are into weight training.
Better still, you can look for articles over the internet and make a compilation of the best workout songs that will make you get up and want to put in a hard workout.
(Prior to this, I used tracks from an Israeli goa-cum-progressive trance band called Astral Projection, and workout to their music. And it worked, even though I workout at home.)
Finally, in your search over the internet, you will also find proper compilations at the various stores, like Amazon and so on and so forth. Remember to sample some of the tracks before purchasing it… or else you’ll waste your money and have to go through the process all over again.
So, what do you think about using cardio music in your workouts? Do you find it works? If so, feel free to share your thoughts, as to how they work as an excellent companion during your workouts.
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