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The Right Way of Using a Rowing Machine: Rowing Machine Tips

October 18, 2016 freebodybuildingblog 0

A rowing machine appears to be simple to work out, however, it has a manual to be followed and instructions to adhere. A rowing machine is a latest innovation and a certain set of instructions need to be followed to gain the maximum out of it.


Activities in Rowing machines are very much similar to the actual rowing activity, but it should be used in a proper way to avoid any kind of injuries and wounds. The injuries out of these latest gym equipments could be severe and could result in a serious damage. People spend about a decade to learn the actual knack of rowing, but it is easier and quicker to learn in a rowing machine. Rowing machine can be used by any individual to perform their exercises, as it can be used by both amateurs and experts. It is wiser for everyone to use a rowing machine by following instructions to have a healthy workout.

Steps to perform a stroke on the rowing machine.

Right posture

Every gym equipment would have a disciplined way to start, in order to effectively complete the workout. The rowing machine could be challenging, as it requires an expert to advice or a strong knowledge over the machine could help. Start the workout by sitting in the front portion of the rowing machine with your knees bent. Sit back straight and relax by breathing heavily. Strap your shoes and ensure a sufficient knot in order not to slip away. Hold the handle and with arms in straight position by bending forward. You can see this video for more details.

Take the stroke

Take the stroke by pulling the handle backwards. While pulling the handle backwards, ensure that you are pushing the foot forward. Release the foot and arms slowly, as you get back to the initial position. Any error in these steps could result in huge damage, as you would not have much control on the stroke and your body with respect to the rowing machine. Taking the stroke in a right way is very much essential, as you would be able to gain the maximum benefit out of it. If you don’t like rowing activities, you can opt for cycling activities using any of these recommended recumbent bikes.

While you are working out

Ensure that you are leaning back at 45 degrees, as you should give some room to your back to adjust with every stroke and this avoids putting excessive pressure on your spinal cord and discs. It is important to breathe properly while you are working out, as a healthy breath helps you in gaining energy to perform the stroke and increases your consistence while working out.

End of the activity

Some of the best rowing machines are filled with feature and options for you to have a comfortable workout. An older rowing machine would come with limited features and the instructions to work out would differ from the advanced rowing machine to traditional rowing machine. It is important to wind up the activity in a proper way, as your heart would be functioning faster than usual and it is important to slow it down in a proper way.


How to Build Chest Muscles Through Effective Training?

August 14, 2016 freebodybuildingblog 0

Our chest muscles make up one of the major muscle groups of the body system. Being a major muscle group, it is important that this area be developed optimally to ensure that the other smaller muscle groups can be developed as well. There are many different ways on how to build chest muscles. But not all of them can be effective. In order for us to understand how to build chest muscles effectively, we need to understand some features of this major muscle group.

The chest muscles are made up of two main muscles, pectoralis major and the pectoralis minor. The pectoralis major, also known as the pectoral, are found at the front of the rib cage, and the contraction of this muscle will bring the humerus across the chest area. Therefore to really work on this muscle, fly-like movements are most effective and appropriate. The pectoralis minor lies underneath the pectoralis major, and its contraction is primary responsible for movement of the shoulders forward. Hence, shrugging and dipping actions are most effective and appropriate to build this muscle. In addition to this feature of the chest muscles, the pectorals can also be divided into upper pectorals and lower pectorals. This will imply that some form of isolated training is possible to enhance the growth of these muscles. How to build chest muscles effectively than? Here are a few types of training that we can use.

Firstly, we can make use of split training. This basically involves using specific exercises to tackle the two major pectoralis major and minor independently. Using a range of fly-like exercises, will allow us to really work on the pectoralis major, allowing for maximum stimulation and growth. How to build chest muscles with and without weights? Using dumbbells, dumbbell flies are good exercises to split train the pectoralis major. With cables, standing cable crossovers are good exercises to build the pectoralis major. For the pectoralis minor, swimming and dips are good exercises to really work out the pectoralis minor. You can also improvise swimming actions by carrying light weights in each hand. This selective split training truly stimulates the different pectoralis to great effect for growth.

Another method on how to build chest muscles involves the use of upper-lower pectoral training. You can use any exercises that target the chest muscles such as push-ups, bench presses, dumbbell fly, crossovers, dips and others. But in order to train the upper or lower pectoral predominantly, your will need to incline your posture. Performing these exercises with the head higher than the legs on an incline bench will work more on the upper pectorals. Performing the same exercises in the opposite incline position whereby the head is lower than your legs will tackle the lower pectorals more. In these different positions, you can also tax the pectorals more with more weights or resistance, thus stimulating more growth. This form of upper-lower pectorals training will also create a distinctive striation between the upper and lower pectorals.

Lastly, how to build chest muscles for maximum mass and growth? This can be achieved through heavy resistance training at lower repetitions. Our chest muscles are considered a massive muscle group that is more susceptible to fast twitch training. In order to stimulate this group maximal, heavy resistance training is needed to induce growth in the muscles.

Combining this type of heavy resistance, mass building training and split and lower-upper pectoral training will solve the problem of how to build chest muscles effectively.

This combination will ensure that the chest muscles are tackled from all angles and the muscles will grow holistically.


How to fully maximise your exercises

August 9, 2016 freebodybuildingblog 0

Before doing the exercises, you should remember important techniques and factors used in the workout in order to fully maximize the exercise and most importantly, to avoid accidents. Examples of these techniques/factors are:

“Safety”, this is the most important thing that you should consider while working out. Nobody wants to get hurt, especially you!

  1.       Before doing an exercise, try to make sure that you won’t hit anybody, be it dumbbells or barbells or anything that has weight.
  2.       Try to obtain a medical clearance before starting weightlifting.
  3.       Also, try not to lift weights that are too heavy for you without having a spotter supporting, you don’t want to have a bar stuck on your chest.
  4.       Do a warm up on the body part you will work on before going on to your program in order to avoid putting shock on your muscles which could lead to injury
  5.       Wear comfortable clothing; wear clothing which is not too tight or too loose.
  6.       In doing exercises, practice having the correct body position so that you could avoid putting unwanted stress on wrong body parts.
  7.       Have ample amount of rest before heading again to the gym in order to avoid “overtraining”. The length of rest depends on an individual’s muscle healing capabilities and his/her experience.
  8.       If something hurts while working out, you should stop and get an appointment with your doctor. 

Maintaining “strict exercise form” is necessary to keep the load on the muscles that the exercise was designed to develop. When you do not maintain strict exercise form, there is increased a probability of injury and you would lessen the load on your target muscles.

Do not do exercises in a “jerking” motion. Weight training exercises should be performed in a smooth, continuous movement in order to fully work the target muscle. You should also do exercises in a “full range of motion” in order to work all the different muscles that could be developed in that exercise. 

Proper breathing should also be done. It is recommended to inhale as you lower the weight (eccentric) and exhale as you lift the weight (concentric).

 Concentrate! Do not let your mind wander while on the gym/work-out place. Losing concentration would lessen the stimuli that your muscle needs in order to meet your demands.

Correct hand positions. Different exercises require different body and hand positions. You should position yourself as the exercises tell you to in order to gain the specified effect of the exercise.


DIY Pulled-calf-muscle-treatment

June 12, 2016 freebodybuildingblog 0

The calf is made up of two muscles. The gastrocnemius is the larger of the two, and this attaches above the knee and heel joint. The soleus is the smaller muscle positioned beneath the gastrocnemius, and this attaches below the knee and heel joint. When these contract, flexion of the knee joint occurs. During sports, calf muscles are commonly injured resulting in pulled calf muscle or even torn calf muscles. Pulled calf muscle treatment is recommended when the muscle is pulled to prevent a worsening of the injury. This form of pulled calf muscle treatment can be done on your own as explained in this article.

When pulled calf muscle injury occurs, immediately apply the pulled calf muscle treatment by following R. I. C. E. ‘R’ stands for ‘Rest’, ‘I’ stands for ‘Ice’, ‘C’ stands for ‘Compression’ and ‘E’ stands for ‘Elevation’. The first thing we want to do with a pulled calf muscle injury after muscles building workout routines is to stop any internal bleeding which causes swelling of the muscle. Applying cold compression will cause the blood vessels in the pulled calf muscle to constrict, thus restricting blood flow to the area. Elevation of the limb also discourages blood flow to the injured area. All this reduce any further internal bleeding and starts the healing process. The injury will not heal without adequate rest. So make sure you stay off physical activities until healing is complete.

The short term pulled calf muscle treatment is R.I.C.E. For the injury to heal, the long term pulled calf muscle injury must be started. This basically involves treatments that will aid blood flow to the area. It might sounds contradictory here, but it is not. R.I.C.E. stops the internal bleeding. Once the internal bleed stops and swelling are reduced, the injured muscle needs to be flushed with nutrients for repair and healing to take place. Our blood carries all the necessary nutrients to the injured area for repairs to begin. Hence, the more blood flow towards the area, the better and quicker is the healing.

To increase blood flow to the area, you can do three things. Firstly, apply heat treatment. By rubbing and applying heating elements like tiger balm to the area will cause blood vessels to expand. Secondly, you can gently massage the area with the ailment. Massage will speed up blood flow to and from the area. Finally, you can apply a hot bag over the affected area and secure this with a bandage. This combination of heat and massage treatment will allow the injured area to heal up. Of course, this will take time, and you must rest a lot.

While resting, it is sometimes impossible to give heat and massage treatment to your pulled calf muscle all the time. In between periods, you can also apply R.I.C.E. to make sure that swelling does not occur. However, the pulled calf muscle treatment should be made up of more heat treatment than anything else.


Three Exercises You Must Include in Your Triceps Workouts

May 29, 2016 freebodybuildingblog 0

Most people starting out in body building or weight lifting often pay too much attention to the biceps. They are the glamour muscles that are most easily ‘shown off’. In actual fact, the triceps can be three times as big as the biceps when fully developed. This in itself should warrant any serious body builder to pay more attention to his triceps workout. There are three exercises that one must include in any triceps workout. These exercises truly isolate and work the triceps from multiple angles, leading to greater growth and benefits for the triceps.

1. Overhead Dumbbell Extensions
• Begin your triceps workout with this exercise. Starting with any arm, grab a dumbbell and lift it into an overhead position. Extend your arm vertically and keep it straight up above your head. Palms should be facing forward whilst holding the dumbbell. With the other hand, grab hold of the opposite elbow to support the exercise arm gently.
• Start the exercise by bending your arm at the elbow and lower the dumbbell slowly towards the back of your head. Induce a full range of motion by lowering the dumbbell as far back and down as possible. During this movement, keep your upper arm as straight and vertical as possible. Your other hand supporting the elbow should help. This will isolate triceps contraction in this triceps workout.
• Return the dumbbell to the original position slowly without compromising the arm position again. This action of extending the elbow will force maximal contraction in the triceps.
• Perform the number of repetitions and sets based on your triceps workout objective.

2. Diamond Push-Ups
• The second exercise in your triceps workout is this exercise.
• Adopt a 3-point starting position on the ground with both hands (palm down) and both feet together with toes on the ground. Body should be straight and weight should only be supported by hands and feet. Allow both your thumbs to touch and both your index fingers to touch whilst pressing against the floor. This should form a diamond shape with your hands.
• With head up and looking forward, lower the entire body slowly towards the ground until the chest almost touches the ground slightly. Keep elbows tugged in and touching the body as much as possible. At that instance, push up from the ground vigorous until the starting position again.
• That is considered one repetition. Continue the same process for the required number of repetitions in your triceps workout.

3. Dips
• The final exercise you should include in your triceps workout is the Dip.
• Using a chair or a bench against a wall, place both hands palms down on the chair with legs facing away from the chair. Body should be upright, elbows locked and legs inclined stretching straight out. This is the starting position as shown in the diagram below.
• Begin by bending your elbows and lowering your body slowly towards the chair, keeping your body and legs as straight as possible. Allow your body to be lower as much as possible.
• Once the maximum point has been reach, push yourself upwards explosive by extending your elbows till they are locked again.
• That is considered one repetition. Continue the same process for the required number of repetitions for your triceps workout.

There are many other exercises that you can include in your triceps workout. The advantages of these three exercises are that they isolate triceps contraction and work the triceps from a variety of angles. This should stimulate maximal muscle growth. These three muscles need not be done in every triceps workout, but they should be included every so often in your triceps workout program in the long term.


The Best Exercise to Lose Belly Fat

January 12, 2016 freebodybuildingblog 0

Read the title of this article again. “The Best Exercise to Lose Belly Fat.” Let me be frank now. It does not exist. In the body building and weight training world, there are hundreds of exercises that we can use to work our abdominal muscles. All can be effective exercises that can help us lose belly fat fast if we consider some key points in our training. When we ask questions like, “How to lose belly fat fast?”, “How do get a flat tummy?”, and “How to get ripped abs?” we must understand that losing weight and belly fat will only come about in a holistic way. Just doing hundreds of crunches everyday and not paying attention to other aspects of abdominal training like diet and general endurance work will not lead to a flat and lean tummy. Here are some things you need to consider and include when thinking of the best exercise to lose belly fat.

1. Increasing General Fat Burning Capacity
Fat is present in every part of our body, but we tend to only associate body fat to belly fat. Studies have shown that in order for fat to be burned in our body, aerobic exercises must be done beyond twenty minutes. Before that, the body depends more on carbohydrates as fuel to supply the aerobic activities. Beyond twenty minutes, fat metabolism kicks in big time because it is by far the most efficient energy mechanism to support long term aerobic exercise. It does not matter what kind of aerobic activities you perform. The best exercise to lose belly fat is actually any form of aerobic activity in excess of twenty minutes. The activity itself need not be too intensive. Low intensity activities like brisk walking or tour cycling for extended period of time are very effective forms of fat metabolism activities. So the next time hear someone ask, “How to get a flat tummy? get them on some form of prolonged low intensity aerobic activities first.

2. Diet Watch
No matter how good and comprehensive your exercise program is to lose fat, it will never be effective if you do not watch your diet. How do you expect to lose weight if you indulge in high calorie sinful meals immediately after your perfect workout? It is just not possible. Losing belly fat and fat is a very simple thing for the body. As long as calorie intake is lower than calorie output, the body will eventually tap on the fat reserve in the body to make up the difference. The end result is a leaner body. The best exercises to lose belly fat must be complemented with a diet that will lead to a calorie deficit. This will result in fat lost, and you can bet that a lot of your belly fat will be used to fuel your energy needs.

3. Abdominal Training Focus
All abdominal exercises are best exercises to lose belly fat. The reason is that these exercises build up the abdominal muscle groups. These have an indirect effect on “how to lose belly fat fast?” and “How t get ripped abs?” When muscle mass of the abdominal muscles increase, this will result in a higher metabolism rate. Chances are, the muscles will tap on close by body fat to fuel this increase rate. Where is the nearest fat source for the abdominals? That’s right! Your belly fat. So one of the key to “how to lose belly fat fast?” is to develop all abdominal muscle groups as best as possible. However, most weight watchers often concentrate only on the rectus abdominals, forgetting the larger obliques. Do pay attention to the obliques as well. If you can shape your obliques up, this will provide a greater mass of muscle for increase metabolic rate and also shape the V-shape trunk that many people desire.

There is no best exercise to lose belly fat. All abdominal exercises are important and beneficial to losing belly fat fast. These must be combined in a holistic way with a proper diet, inclusion of prolonged aerobic activities as well as a general development of all abdominal muscle groups to induce the greatest weight loss of belly fat.

Here is two more articles for you to enjoy:

What’s the Best Exercise to Lose Belly Fat? — Keeping Fit with Fit … – What’s the Best Exercise to Lose Belly Fat? 12 March 2010 One Comment. When thinking of getting slimmer, most people immediately focus their efforts on one single area of their bodies – the abdominal area. There’s a good reason for that …


The Perks of Working the Muscle

November 13, 2015 freebodybuildingblog 0

As you go over the various exercise routines, deciding on the right one for you may be confusing. In your dream of having a toned and strong body, you can best bet on resistance training to help you burn the fat and feed the muscle.

Resistance training, commonly called strength or weight training, is a fat burning exercise that makes use of weight equipment or your own body weight to work out your muscles. It is common for people to associate this training with images of burly bodybuilders. However, this notion is not essentially true—resistance training will simply support your body, not enlarge it altogether. As your muscles oppose the weight that you are lifting, your cells acclimatize to the extra load. This causes hypertrophy, where cells such as nerve cells enlarge and increase in number to facilitate muscle contraction.

Practically anyone can carry out resistance training. With the use of the bench press, dumbbell, or barbell, you can be sure to burn your fat and feed your muscle. Should you want to workout at home, you can also do push-ups, where it is your own body weight that opposes your muscles. Older people can also indulge in resistance training. Standing free-weights resistance or the moderate-intensity machine training is an option that they can take.

There are many advantages underlying resistance training:

1. It increases your Bone Mineral Density.

Bone tissues are in a constant course of breaking down and building up. This process is controlled by hormones and takes its peak during puberty. As we age, our hormone production may no longer be as active, thereby compromising the bone remodeling process. In this case, we can look to physical activity—especially resistance building—as a second option to maintain our bone mineral density.

2. It makes you stronger.

This routine promises stronger bones and stronger muscles.

3. It enables you to perform a broader range of activities.

As you lift extra weights, your body becomes conditioned to do more strenuous activities. Coping with a fast-paced and active lifestyle becomes a breeze.

4. It burns fat.

Lifting weights sets your muscles to burn the extra fats. Naturally, your body fat percentage decreases and your body becomes leaner.

5. It improves heart condition.

When done on a regular basis, resistance training can lower your heart rate and blood pressure. This decreases risks of heart disease.

6. It improves the health of the Elderly.

Resistance training can improve the overall health of the elderly. They become less prone to diseases or injuries brought about by age.

Resistance training is not something you can experiment with on your own. Before pursuing this routine, it’s best to consult a doctor first, especially if you have health conditions or are overweight. A fitness instructor can also assist you on the proper execution and intensity of the exercises. If you’re not careful, you may end up with injuries.

Remember, you have to perform the routine correctly and regularly in order to reap its benefits. Just be patient and do things one step at a time. Soon your body will be trained to take on more challenging exercise moves.

Among all fat burning exercises, resistance training can be your best bet. By burning the fat and feeding the muscle, it may just be your ticket to a toner and leaner body.

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