Apr 202012
 

A mammoth man lifts a hulking barbell. A tiny woman does catches and overhead throws that work her “lats”. A child pulls on a green rubber tube. A teen lifts her legs repetitively. A senior squeezes his knees together so hard his face is turning red. What is strength training? All of these.

Making your muscles move against outside resistance will definitely build them up as well as bones, tendons, and ligaments. A regular, prolonged period of such resisting motion is a strength training exercise routine–needed 3 times weekly along with stretching and aerobic activities to be a full physical fitness program.

Any sort of good health program incorporates strength training as an essential part. Strength training fights the tendency of lean muscle mass to turn to fat around age 30. Muscle requires 7 to 10 times as many calories daily than fat, and as strength training replaces fat with muscle, it helps avoid even more fat increase. It increases metabolism–aiding your mind and keeping a number of chronic conditions at bay. Strength training helps you keep your balance and builds your bones–both of which safeguard you from falls.

Strength training has numerous forms; all except a red-faced senior doing isometric workouts are good. Isometrics keep the angles of joints and hence muscle lengths fixed throughout the workout. Isometrics nearly exclusively enhance muscles at the particular joint angle of the action rather than throughout a span of motion. Furthermore, it raises blood pressure–unsafe for those with cardiac or stroke possibilities.

The resistance required by strength training is most commonly provided by gravity with the use of progressively massive free weights working all parts of the body. Barbells are bulky and can be hazardous–it’s easy to lose control–yet are good for the heavier range. The bench and storage racks take up a lot of space. A health and fitness center with a spotter is optimal spot to utilize these.

More individuals use dumbbells, particularly at home or the office. They are a great deal safer and take a great deal less space. Regrettably, to continue a strength training program, you will need to graduate to ever heavier weights, requiring many more dumbbells and much more space.

You are able to, nevertheless, have the collection of weights you have to have in only about the same amount of space as a single dumbbell by using the Bowflex SelectTech 552 and Bowflex SelectTech 1090 dumbbells. Both of these have the “dial a weight” feature: place the handle in the weight stack, dial the weight, a clip moves to pick up the plate(s) you require. The SelectTech 1090 includes weights from 10 to 90 pounds–thus the number–and the SelectTech 552 gives you weights from 5 to 52 pounds. One or the other will certainly be sufficient for all your years of weight training–unless you are a professional athlete or body builder. “Weight training” is strength training making use of gravity to supply the resistance.

Also convenient are the resistance bands or tubes. Each color has a different resistance, with lighter colors having less resistance and darker, more. As you progress, you are going to acquire a rainbow of colors. Resistance training can be pretty light–good for post-injury training. And heavier resistance training is good for advanced strength trainers. You will have to vary your program at least every 3 weeks to prevent “accommodation”–where your body stops using as much energy or building muscles for the same activity.

Whether you use your very own body’s weight, exercise equipment, resistance bands, barbells, or the Bowflex SelectTech dumbbells, to develop your body, you will experience the benefits of of strength training, and learn for yourself what strength training is.

Apr 102012
 

The common image of strength training is a sweaty heavyweight lifting enormous barbells, but if you aren’t attracted to pumping iron, you don’t need to. You don’t need any iron at all in your home workout equipment. At minimum, you need your own body mass. More than that, a few pieces of plastic will help.

You own body has a large variety of weights in its limbs and joints that provide plenty of options for movement. Guided and repeated movements of simply your body can supply all the strength training you want. But to move your body with comfort and safety, you should buy a good workout mat. Padding makes most of the prone and seated activity a lot more comfortable. Shop for a mat that’s at least 3/8 inch thick. The thin yoga mats may be convenient to roll up and put under your arm for transport, but they are not thick enough to pad your body adequately.

There are many on-line sources for “body only” strength exercise routines. Make sure to evaluate the qualifications of the provider. There are many videos from physical therapists and certified physical trainers–you do not have to pay attention to just anyone. And though it hardly has to be stated, if what you’re doing burns, it’s fine, but if it hurts, stop! You can recognize the contrast between working muscles and damaging yourself.

Bodies, however, at least our own, can get boring, and boring means fewer workouts. So this is where simple resistance bands or tubes show up. These rainbow-colored bands add resistance between limbs, or can be attached to a door knob or a grip bar. They give variety and increase the strength needed to perform a movement. The bands gain in strength as the color gets darker. This means you can go a very long way in getting to your strength training objectives with only these light, very affordable, easily stored bands. Purchase them online or at any good sporting goods store. Hanging them on light plastic hooks can avoid tangles.

A fitness ball makes a last, inexpensive piece of home exercise equipment. Pick one that enables you sit on it with flat feet. What you do with just your body, you can intensify with these versatile balls. Think about push-ups. They are one thing with your feet planted firmly on the floor. With your feet on an unstable round surface, they are totally another. A fitness ball will challenge your balance and core stability–and they will increase.

A buying tip: get the ball with a pump, extra plugs (in case you damage one trying to re-inflate a flat ball) and the instruction booklet or DVD. Save yourself the frustration of not having them. A bicycle pump with a ball needle is not an equivalent.

“Pumping Plastic!” just doesn’t have the cachet carried by “pumping iron.” But it is just as effective, much less costly, and much less space-consuming than iron for your home exercise equipment. Eat your iron–don’t pump it.

Mar 182012
 

When you think strength training for women, do not think you will bulk up like a male weight lifter. Women do not bulk up with strength training in the absence of extraordinary efforts and medical intervention.

Actually, strength training (ST) slims down women. If you perform an ST routine 3 times a week, you can easily lose four or even more pounds in a year without cutting a calorie. Better still: Lean muscles weigh more than fat, so you will have lost a lot more fat than the scale alone will show. You will lose inches, which you can measure in smaller clothing sizes.

Better yet, ST diminishes calorie consumption long term. People who perform an ST routine have a higher metabolism for the rest of the day than if they had invested the same amount of time in aerobic exercise. It adds up to about 100 calories a day, over 350,000 calories in a year (10 + pounds) — for doing nothing! Also, every pound of lean muscle consumes seven to 10 times as many calories as a pound of fat. Lean muscle requires 35-50 calories per hour while fat requires only five. ST gets rid of fat and makes it easy for you to keep it off.

Another really significant pretty much women-only advantage is the benefits in warding off osteoporosis. ST strengthens muscles, ligaments, tendons, and bones. All of them reduce the dangers associated with bone loss. Should you tumble– and the balance gained by ST will reduce that likelihood– your more powerful body parts will help protect against the often disabling effects of such a fall.

OK– ST can be accomplished in many ways. What’s best? Novices may want to use just their body for the weight they lift, but not too far into your program, you need more. The most typical equipment has been dumbbells and barbells, but resistance bands/tubes and exercise machines, too, may be put to use.

Dumbbells and barbells come in increasing weights that keep your program on track. You have to change what you are doing every 3 weeks to avoid “accommodation” to the routine, when your body ceases using as much energy to do the same work. If you visit the fitness center, you will have the ability to choose among a large set of both hand-held dumbbells and the larger barbells. To exercise at home or at the office, you require something that takes up a lot less space. The Bowflex SelectTech 552 dumbbells are a great option for women wishing to exercise at home. A twist of a knob is all that’s needed to adjust the weight from 5 through 52 pounds, all most people will need. And they take about the same amount of room as a single pair of traditional dumbbells.

Elastic bands or tubes, also, are excellent equipment for small places. The darker the shade, the more resistance the bands give, so you will desire an entire rainbow eventually.

Alternating lifting your own weight, pulling on bands, and lifting dumbbells can give years of strength training for a woman.