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    Getting To Know Your Bench Press

    The bench press is an important workout. However it must be duly noted that the flat bench press and the exercise alone is not an efficient way to work your chest. Consider your chest’s shape, it needs to be hit at multiple angles and by multiple exercises i.e:

    Flat Bench
    Incline Bench
    Decline Bench

    When incorporated to a super set, it is advantageous to incorporate a bench press with some dumbbell fly work. Therefore a bench press in the flat position would benefit from a flat position circular fly, or squeezing the chest together type fly. These exercises are grouped by ‘pushing’ and ‘squeezing’ the muscle groups. Here are some examples of these exercises: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y_Z2LftZDvk The dumbbell fly can be executed in much the same way as a varied level of bench press i.e. incline (upper chest), decline (lower chest) and flat position (central chest).

    Smith Machine Bench Presses

    A smith machine is great for an accurate and controlled bench press. It can help to develop your repetition form, which is important. Remember, control the weights, don’t let the weights control you. If you find that adding weight to your bench press routine is causing a detrimental effect to your form, try applying the weight to the smith machine. Essentially, the smith machine will allow a perfect rep in your bench press exercise as it can only be pushed forward and restrained on the return in a stringent manner.

    Dumbell Bench Press Exercises

    We’ve established that the chestrequires a workout from different angles and by different types of exercises i.e. “pressing” motions (bench) and “squeezing” motions (flys). Dumbbells can be used to achieve a shapely chest in many ways. You can use dumbbells to vary your pushing exercises and as an alternative to bench presses. By using the pushing technique, you can use an incline, decline or flat position to push the dumbbells away from you at different angles. The closer together your hands finish as a result of the pushing motion, the closer to the centre of your chest you are working.

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    Get The most Out Of A Rowing Machine

    A Rowing Machine will directly work the latimus dorsi (the upper back and shoulder muscles that you would use to do chin ups and pull ups). The biceps and the lower back are worked with the wrist and also grip strength in your hands is increased. Your quadriceps ( the front thigh muscles), and your calves are also worked. It is also one of the better seated cardio-vascular exercises, thus encompassing an overall desirable workout in one.

    A rowing machine will less directly work your triceps, pectorals (chest muscles), abdominal muscles (frontal and obliques). The main role these muscles serve in rowing is as your core stabilizer, so that you maintain a proper posture whilst rowing.

    In short: If you don’t have time to both lift weights and do cardio, rowing on a good rowing machine will help build both muscle and cardio abilities. Most people prefer exercise bikes when it comes to seated cardio even if they’re less useful. However a rowing machine will give your whole body an efficient muscle building and cardio workout.

    Rowing Machine Advice

    It is easier then you think to injure yourself when using a rowing machine. These machines require and aggressive pulling action when committing to an exercise or repetition on the apparatus. For this reason, it is best that you carry out a full 10 – 15 minute warm up exercise for your whole body, as the rowing machine will work all of your muscle groups. Using an exercise bike for 5 minutes can help loosen up the leg muscle groups. Practicing the pulling exercise that you will execute on the rowing machine can be done with light dumbbells. Ensure to stretch all of your back muscles and if you have had any history of back problems, be sure to consult a Doctor first. To enable more support of the back when exercising on a rowing machine, a support belt may be an option.

  • Privacy & Cookie Policy

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    List of Foods That Help You Lose Weight

    Tired of the belly bulge? Give these ‘super foods’ a whirl to help you kick that spare tyre.

    Oatmeal

    Your morning snack attack is caused by a dip in blood sugar levels in your body. Fiber rich oatmeal remains in your stomach for hour after hour, helping you resist those fatty snacks.

    Steer away from the flavored varieties with added sugar and just select the plain stuff and sweeten it with berries.

    Almonds and alternative Nuts

    Go nuts! They slim your tummy by keeping it full. A Purdue University study showed that folks who ate nuts felt full longer than those that ate rice cakes. Persist with twenty four almonds on a daily basis to satisfy your hunger pangs while not overloading on calories.

    Skip salted nuts; an excessive amount of sodium raises blood pressure.

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    Fast Weight Loss

    How to Lose Weight Fast

    The title of this article has no doubt grabbed your attention. Just how do you lose weight fast? First of all you need to consider the following elements before you even start initiating a fast weight loss program:

    1. Starving yourself will not work as the body will retain fat reserves as it is a survival reflex
    2. Thinking that water retention can be remedied by drinking less water is a myth
    3. Losing weight fast can cause medical complications such as gall stones (more common in women)
    4. going to the gym for 2 – 3 days a week will not aid the most desirable result i.e. “fast weight loss”

    Starving to Lose Weight Fast

    By starving yourself, you are in fact making it even more difficult to lose weight. Why? The human body is a mechanism for survival, therefore if you starve yourself, your body will go into survival mode.

    How does it do this? By way of increasing your fat stores for the lack of food that it thinks is ahead. Some nutrition is better than no nutrition and balanced nutrition is the key to losing weight fast.

    Water Retention

    The human body naturally stores water. To check if your excessive weight is primarily water based, simply pinch the fattest part of your body and allow the skin to retract. If you recognise a rippling effect when the skin retracts, you should perhaps consider a water reduction element to your fast weight loss routine.

    Believe it or not, drinking more water is the method for dealing with water retention! This is because your body is naturally holding water as you are not drinking enough of it. You should be consuming at least a gallon of water per day in order to reduce the water retention on your body, which will also aid your liver in processing water more efficiently. In some cases of excessive weight, this can be half the battle.

    Medical Complications

    When deciding to initiate a fast weight loss program, you need to consider the implications on your body. Women – particularly middle aged women – can develop gall stones from the gall bladder not being able to deal with the amount of cholesterol it now has to produce with fast weight loss.

    When your weight reduces, the cholesterol within your body naturally starts to reduce, thus sending more of it to the gall bladder to be processed. A stone can form when the amount a gall bladder can process is exceeded, thereby causing solid deposits which can cause great amounts of discomfort.

    We recommend that anyone seeking a fast weight loss solution should have a BMI check and seek comprehensive advice from their Doctor.

    Weight Loss Consistency

    Perhaps you’re doing a weight loss program that is diet only based. That can indeed be a very positive method, particularly if you consider the gall bladder risk. If you are deemed to be low risk for gall stones, then a workout routine simultaneous to your diet could in fact double your efforts.

    The key to any workout goal is consistency. If you are attending the gym 2 – 3 days per week, you may not recognise the significantly different results from going 4 – 5 days a week. It’s always good to let your body recover and in our personal experience, the best day for this is Wednesday.

    We all like our weekends free right? So how about Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday in the gym? There’s no harm in doing Monday to Thursday or Tuesday to Friday of course, but for a weight loss program this will give you up to 3 days not working out. A rest is good but too long of a rest is bad essentially. It’s call intensity and it should be considered in order for your body to be pushed to the correct limits in order to achieve your goals.

    Cardio Weight Loss

    Fast weight loss is primarily going to be achieved by long rep range, intense cardio based workouts. The best methods are typically exercise bikes, rowing machines, super set low weight and high range dumbell exercise and the like.

    If you are looking to lose a belly, a daily core workout is also going to be key to losing weight around this area. Consider challenging your legs as much as possible, as your legs burn a lot of calories to use given that they are large muscle groups and a heavier part of your body to exercise. Back exercises are also crucial to ensuring you maintain a healthy posture whilst working to the end of your successful program.

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    Still Not Using a Pull Up Bar?

    Pull Up Bars

    When choosing a pull up bar, it’s always wise to consider the variation of chin up that you’d like to execute. If you are buying the internal to the door frame type, you will only be able to use this for close grip pull ups (in order to work your back and your biceps). This is referring to the apparatus that fits and stretches to only within the doorframe. There are other products available which still fit within the doorframe, however they also have handles that fit outside of the door frame in order for you to widen your grip to work the latimus dorsi when doing a pull up.

    Perfect Pull Ups

    What is the perfect pull up? Now you’re asking the right question before you buy your pull up bar. Just what is and how do you execute a perfect chin up? There are many ways to commence this exercise and it wholly depends on what your goals are.

    So, what is the perfect pull up? This depends entirely on your goal. If you are looking to build muscle mass and strength with your pull up bar, the slower and fuller (i.e. maximum arm extension) with a low rep range is the technique for you. If you wish to build upper body strength and stamina, more speed within your rep and a high rep range is the answer. Remember, your rests between sets are crucial. The longer you rest with the slower and fuller low rep ranges helps, perhaps approximately 30 seconds. If you’re looking for stamina, the higher rep ranges should have around 15 – 20 seconds repetition rest to maintain intensity of your workout. This also applies to weight loss goals.

    Muscles that Pull Ups Work

    What muscles do pull ups work? Most folk think it’s solely a bicep workout, which it is certainly not. An accurately executed chin up will work the following muscle groups:

    • Latimus Dorsi (“lats”)
    • Biceps
    • Upper Back
    • Forearms

    The Latimus Dorsi muscles are primarily worked at their most effective when your palms are facing away from you when executing a pull up. By widening your grip, you are in fact concentrating on this muscle group more than the biceps. Your biceps are effectively worked via a chin up when your palms are facing towards you, around shoulder width apart. This is more effective for muscle growth of the bicep. Do bear in mind that a fuller looking bicep cannot be achieved via this workout alone. To ensure you biceps are worked effectively additional to a pull up, why not try to “super set” your chin ups with another bicep routine?

    Super Set Pull Ups

    A super set is where you combine two workouts into one set of reps. For instance you would execute one set of chin ups, one set of bicep curls and then commit to a rest before your next set. As mentioned, a chin up alone will not fully develop your bicep effectively. Perhaps look to incorporate your pull up with some hammer curls, or seated preacher curls. This is the most effective way to both burn calories (replace with supplements for building or utilise in conjunction with weight loss) and develop lean mass.

    Ab Exercises with a Pull Up Bar

    Believe it or not, this is a great way to work your lower abdominal muscles. In order to do this efficiently, you need to hang on the pull up bar with your legs dangling. With your legs straightened and taught, raise your legs to around 45 degrees from being parallel to your waist. Simply pull your legs up towards your chest and you will feel the effort required by your lower abdominal muscles to achieve this workout. It is good to superset this with a declined bench crunch for maximum results.

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    Supplements & Shakes

    Diet Goals

    Supplements and shakes are used by many gym users, whether for the benefit of weight gain or weight loss. What is the best option for you? This depends entirely on your goals. We’ve categorised some different goal types below:

    • Weight loss: Balancing a diet using food and or supplements to lose weight
    • Weight gain: Increasing dietary intake using food and supplements to gain weight
    • Weight maintenance: Maintaining a calorie intake to remain at the current weight range or BMI

    Fast Weight Loss

    Fast weight loss can be achieved by a low solid food intake and a low carbohydrate and fat / saturated fat supplement. If you are looking to lose weight fast, be sure to check what the amount of calories per day should be consumed in order to achieve your goal. By monitoring calorie intake, we can make informed decisions in what we eat and what supplements we take in order to become successful in losing weight. A low fat and low carbohydrate diet can be aided and if necessary supplemented to a certain degree by using supplements and shakes. Some examples of which are below:

    • Fat burners
    • Low carb shakes
    • Low calorie shakes

    Fast Weight Gain

    Fast weight gain can be a very difficult thing to achieve. Gaining fat is easy, just drink beers, eat pizza and then sleep. We all know this is unhealthy and not the correct direction to proceed. To gain weight in the case of lean muscle mass, you need to have a higher calorie intake than your metabolic rate (the amount of  energy your body will typically use in a day). Think of your body as a car and your food as fuel. If the car doesn’t have enough fuel to deal with your workout and deal with the recovery period (when your muscles recover and grow back larger and more firm), then you’ll end up frustrated at recognising no results. Two shakes per day additional to four meals should help you to gain weight. Do bear in mind that fat (particularly saturated fat) and carbohydrate intake is also important. Carbohydrates before a workout is beneficial and a shake immediately afterwards aids the recovery period.

    • Fat burners
    • High carb shakes
    • Low carb shakes
    • High protein shakes

    Maintaining Your Weight

    Maintaining a weight of BMI can actually be a lot more difficult than you think. When we consider the metabolic rate, your body also adapts to calorie intake and starts learning how to deal with it more effectively. For this reason, it is always good to consider the workout routine you have and the supplements you are using. Water retention can build up over time which can be confused with increased fat on the body. It is always considered wise to review your workout routine every twelve weeks, along with what supplements you are using. Your body will get used to both and your metabolic rate may increase as a result. Shocking the body with a new routine or diet can help it stop becoming lazy, which is usually the best period of opportunity to increase the amount of weight you are lifting.

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    Ab Circle Pro Abdominal Exerciser

    The Ab Circle pro is a widely recommended abdominal exercise machine. Super sets can also be utilised effectively using this equipment. This machine is a kneeling based abdominal workout machine used in conjunction with handlebars that you hold in the same way you would a bicycle. The Ab Circle Pro then enables you to twist your body from side to side with little effort and working out your abdominal muscles to the fullest extent.

    The Ab Circle Pro mini is smaller version which is more convenient to store at home with ease and doesn’t take up too much space. It concentrates on two primary exercises in order to work your stomach muscles to their maximum. The first exercise is based on your knees being placed within two cups and executing a side to side abdominal workout. This is also achievable with the full size Ab Circle Pro. The Second exercise is an abdominal and thigh workout which includes an oblique muscle group workout.

    Check out the video below for a 12 minute excercise routine that you can easily fit into any day.

     

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    Pick Up Some Dumbbells Now!

    Dumbbells

    Dumbbells are the cornerstone of any free weight or mass building exercise. Whether its biceps, triceps, lats, pecs and even legs, the dumbbell has been a part of the gym family since free weight exercise began. You can use machines in line with dumbbell exercises, which makes them very versatile and almost crucial to any workout regardless of your goals.

    Here is a great video below from The Body Coach that utilies dumbbells into a High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) workout. The video demonstrates that dumbbells are not there just for the sole purpose of building muscele mass, as they can be used to add intensity to your cardio workout and improve your overal fitness level.

    Adjustable Dumbbells

    If you’re regularly working out in a gym, the issue around adjustable dumbbells is not likely to be apparent. This is because an abundance of different weight levels are available with a quick visit to the rack. However if you are working out from home or in your garage, having an abundance of weight may be more important than you think.

    Having a training partner is great for motivation, realising mistakes in your form etc. What if you don’t have that? You simply need to maintain your level of momentum and form as best you can. Adjustable dumbbells are great initially, as you may be strapped for cash or a beginner getting used to form over the amount of weight. However, when you are upping your game, ensure to have plenty of weights available to start the next set quickly, thus maintaining intensity within your workout. If you want to develop your workout and subsequently your body, you don’t want to waste time between sets changing weights.

  • Privacy

    Your very important privacy…

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    The Fitness Fact Team.