Monday, August 30, 2010

PR on my military press

Last week Thursday, I was able to do 1 rep of 90# on my standing barbell military press. On the same day, I was able to do 5 reps total of 80# on the same exercise. On my last cycle, I wasn't able to do 1 rep with 80#. I'm really glad for the progress. May not be much, but I had to start somewhere :D

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Training progress

Today, I tried for a 1RM pull in the deadlift. 570#, the most I've ever deadlifted. After the max pull, this was my workout:

440# x 5 reps
400# x 5 reps

Military Press:-
70# x 4 reps
70# x 1 rep
60# x 5 reps

KB swings for 12 mins:- 320 swings

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

The Deadlift is NOT a back exercise!!

From an earlier post, I said that the misconception out there of people thinking that the deadlift is a back exercise and thus has lead to poor form in the deadlift. In this video below, there will be people who will be doing the deadlift with their back and those who will be doing the lift with their legs. See if you can recognize the difference:

Now if you guessed that the lifters with the rounded (lower) backs were lifting with their backs, you are correct. Lifting with rounded backs means that the glutes and hamstrings are not being used to lift the weights off the floor, but the back. However, if the (lower) backs are straight, this means that the legs were used to lift the weight off the floor.

Now you might ask what's the point of this? Lifting with your back means that you are robbing yourself of your full potential. You can never lift more with your back more than you can lift with your legs. Also, this puts your back in a very risky position, as the lower back flexion puts the spine at the greatest risk for disk slippage and straining of ligaments. Never happened to me, but what I heard of it, it's not a nice thing to experience. Any serious injury equals lost training time, and a lot of times, having to restart to build back up your strength. I don't want this to happen to you, hence the reason for this post.

My progress

I just finished a Power to the People deadlift cycle with a 10# improvement. I was able to do 520# for 2 reps off a 4" deficit. So I'll take the rest of the week off and start back on Monday on the deadlift.

As for the press (military), I'm doing 60# x 5 reps and 50# x 5 reps so I'll be doing that for one more day and then increase the press by 10#. Hopefully I can do the 70# for 5 reps without putting the bar down.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

My two cents on diet

As a gym trainer, this is a very common start of a conversation between a new gym member and myself if they come to me for help:

Client: "I want to lose weight and get toned."

Trinigirevik: "Just to let you know, yes, exercise will help you to lose weight. However, you can have the best exercise program, if your diet is not up to scratch, you will not lose the weight."

Client: "So what do you recommend?"

Trinigirevik (now I'm talking to you viewers on the interwebs):

"Now before I continue, just to let you know I'm not a diet professional and if you want someone to structure a diet for you, contact a dietician. However, that is going to cost you, but if it's necessary, do it.

For most people, I think one simple change in their diet is going to have a major change in their body composition. Most people in this world like sweet things. Now there's nothing wrong with liking sweet things. I like sweet things too. However, there are sweet things that will get you fat, and there are sweet things that will help you lose fat.

According to this link, one person consumes appoximately 24lbs of sugar per person per year. In other words, the global consumption of sugar is approximately 144 billion lbs. No wonder 1 billion adults are overweight and 3 million are considered obese.

Too much of this...

Can lead to this

I have a simple suggestion. Instead of eating 3 cheesecake slices, eat as much apples to your heart's content. Instead of drinking 6 sodas a day, drink 6 glasses of water a day (and more). In other words, satisfy your sweet tooth with fruits: apples, pears, mangoes, soursop, guavas, grapes etc. There are many others that you can have at your disposal. They are more satisfying, as in they make you feel full faster and longer. So your hunger urges are reduced and you just cannot put in the same amount of calories in one setting as say 3 slices of cheesecake and 2 Coke drinks.

Consuming more of this...

Can lead to this

Diet is an extremely broad and deep topic, and there are many angles where this can be tackled. However, I think this advice here is advice you may have heard before. There is a reason for that; because it works! BUT IF YOU ARE DIABETIC, CHECK WITH YOUR DOCTOR AND DIETICIAN!!!! This is one of the instances where you have to spend the money on a dietician. But for most people, doing this simple switch can go a long way in helping one to lose weight. And if you do this in conjunction with strength training, you may be turning heads at the beach one day."

Thursday, August 12, 2010

The Deadlift.... back exercise....or is it?

The deadlift. Pick up a weight off the floor and stand up straight with the weight. That's it. As simple as you can get. Or is it? If it is so simple, then why are people afraid of the deadlift? Maybe because you have seen a video of a powerlifter doing deadlifts and it didn't look like much fun

But the major topic that I'm going to tackle right now is the conception that the deadlift is a back exercise. Now, the deadlift is good for the back (gasp!) and the back is used in the exercise, but the (mis)conception that a lot of people have is the fact the back is the primary force driving the deadlift. Wrong! Because of this,a lot of poor form has been encountered in the deadlift.

To make a long story short, the legs (mainly glutes and hamstrings) are the main muscles used to start the deadlift. They are the most powerful muscles in the body. Using the back to lift weight off the floor is like asking a 3 year old boy to pull a truck. The lower back muscles are the smallest muscles in the entire posterior chain. No wonder why people pull back muscles when doing improper deads

In a later post, I will show how the legs are to be positioned so that the legs are used to pull weight, and not the back.

Until next time, happy training

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Calling all women to pick up heavy weights!!!

*Cricket sound...........................................................*

Yes, you heard me. Ladies, if you want to look like this,

you might want to take a look at the kind of training she does. Here is an article from Barry Ross, a coach who strength trained Ms. Felix before she turned pro.

The Holy Grail in Speed Training

The intro may seem a little bit long winded for people who are not into strength and conditioning but the take home point of this article is that if you want to look a certain way, do the training that will help you get there. And the training does not have to be tedious, but it must be intense. As seen in the article, Allyson and her training partners at the time, were doing deadlifts in the 250-300 # range. Now take a look in the picture above and tell me if she looks like Arnold's evil twin sister.

I get this from ladies all the time in the gym, "I don't want to lift heavy, I don't want to get big and cumbersome, I don't want to look like a man etc. etc." Look at the picture above again, and do a check on your fears.

For further confirmation, here is a video of Yoana Snidemann doing a Turkish Get-Up with a 53 lb kettlebell:

And another video of her doing other exercises, and as she says, lifting heavy is a good way to get lean:

But this doesn't mean that you are going to start lifting 100lbs from the get-go. No, you have to start light, just like everybody else. But don't stick with Ken & Barbie weights all you life. They are not going to help you get lean.

As a final argument, this is a good article for reading:

Train Like a Man - Especially if You’re a Woman

I hope this post and the extra reading material can put to rest some of the fears of women doing strength training

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

OK?!! What next are they going to come up with?

Looking at the fitness industry, I've seen really groundbreaking products to the downright ridiculous. This one goes beyond ridiculous. It's called the Shake Weight. Have a look:

I think Kenny says it best about what I think of this :D

For those of you thinking of buying this FOR FITNESS PURPOSES (for other uses, the ball is in your court), my advice is 'Don't waste your $$$$$$$!'. At least I wouldn't. They are a joke, and they are downright lying to you. You might be better off with your pilates class.

My opinion is this, if you want to get ripped, defined or build muscle, lift heavy weights, eat lots of protein and fruits and do sprints (this is my twitter opinion, although I don't have twitter):

A time tested tool for building muscle