My back is STILL a little sore from Monday's workout. Probably because I haven't done deadlifts in a while. Checked in the bathroom 6 times yesterday, I figured it wasn't the acid reflux acting up afterall but simply a case of bad food or something. Feeling much better this morning!
About to head to gym in an hour, but not without a game plan. Already did cardio yesterday so I'm gonna do shoulders today. If you're on the Explode Program, check out Day 6 - Shoulder & Abs . I'm switching it up a bit because my body's gotten used to that routine.
Kicking off with 10 mins on the elliptical machine to get the heart rate up, followed by Smith Shoulder Press:
Smith Shoulder Press – 3 sets x 8 reps
Sit on bench with bar positioned in front of shoulders. Grasp bar with wide overhand grip. Disengage bar by rotating bar back. Press bar upward until arms are extended overhead. Lower bar to front of shoulders and repeat. Pull head back slightly so bar does not head. Range of motion will be compromised if grip is too wide.
Barbell Close Grip Bench Press – 3 sets x 8 reps
Lie on bench and grasp barbell from rack with shoulder width grip. Lower weight to chest with elbows close to body. Push barbell back up until arms are straight. Repeat. Grip can be slightly narrower than shoulder width but not too close.
Cable Pushdowns – 5 sets x 8 reps
This will work on your triceps. Effective for getting rid of flabby arms!
Face high pulley and grasp cable attachment with overhand narrow grip. Position elbows to side. Extend arms down. Return until forearm is close to upper arm. Repeat. The elbow can travel up few inches at top of motion. Stay close to cable to provide resistance at top of motion.
Cable Decline Tricep Extensions – 3 sets x 8 reps
Position legs under lower leg pad and lie back on bench. Grasp bar with narrow overhand grip. Position bar near forehead or top of head.
Extend elbows to raise bar attachment until arms are straight. As arms extended, position them vertically. Lower bar by bending elbows. As bar nears head reposition elbows back just enough to allow bar to clear around curvature of head. Repeat.
Dumbbell Arnold Press – 3 sets x 8 reps
Stand with two dumbbells position in front of shoulders, palms facing body and elbows under wrists. Initiate movement by bringing elbows out to sides. Continue to raise elbows outward while pressing dumbbells overhead until arms are straight. Lower to front of shoulders in opposite pattern and repeat.
*Important: Movement should emphasize shoulder abduction while minimizing forearm pronation as this exercise attempts to combine lateral raise like motion with shoulder press. Lean forward slightly when lifting dumbbells.
I'll most likely do some lateral raises and dumbbell shrugs to end things off if I still have the energy...
If you're not confident with using the Smith machine or bar bell (especially if you don't have a trainer/someone supervising), it's best and safe to work with free weights. There are plenty of other routines where you can use dumbbells, that's why the Explode Program (Shoulders + Abs) was made easy for beginners.
Ladies, you will not get buff from these routines unless you have sumo's eating habits.
Follow these routines carefully and eat right - you WILL become toned and lean. Strong and lean is the way to go, not thin and frail!
Time to step it up.
Before I start, I must recommend that you do not check your weight on the scale too often. This is because if you are weight training, and to a lesser extent cardio training, you may be discouraged that your weight is going up after you exercise. However this is most likely muscle. Remember that muscle is more dense than fat. If you are hitting a plateau in your weight interval training is definitely for you.
Some key points to take note of:
- The best plan may be to check your weight once a week.
- When you do a weight check, always do it first thing in the morning after you’ve relieved your bowels and bladder and before you eat breakfast.
- Keep a chart of your weekly weights so you can be aware of any fluctuations.
- Muscle is more dense than fat, if you've been weight training and realize that you've put on some weight, don't be alarmed.
Now let's talk about interval training.
* * * * *
What is Interval Training?
If you are like most of us, when you train, you train with the same routine that you have done for months/years. You may be running at the same pace or even lifting the same amount of weights you have been for months. Our bodies just like us, gets used to repetitive behavior. Our body actually uses less energy to do the same task. So the more you do the same task over time, the less energy you use to do it with.
Interval training actually doesn’t allow your body to get used to a routine.
- An example would be running at a low speed for 10 minutes, then running at a much higher speed for 5 then back to the low speed again.
What are the benefits of Interval Training?
Interval training majorly shocks your cardiovascular system, and this will allow you to melt away those pounds much faster. Using interval training will increase your fast-twitch muscle fibers and this in turn causes your body to burn a lot more fuel. This can make you more agile, which will greatly enhance any sport you play.
Common Mistakes with Interval Training
The most common mistake when introducing interval training in your exercise program is that some of you don’t warm up their muscles sufficiently. Please remember, that when you start to introduce anything that has high intensity levels, it is always essential that you warm up your muscles adequately. Start with a low level of intensity and gradually increase your speed. 5 minutes is an adequate warm up, as long as you begin to start breaking a sweat. Warming up allows your body to start pumping blood quicker and more aggressively to supply your muscles with the fuel they need for the increased intensity ahead.
If you get cramps often, you haven’t given enough time for your muscles and cardiovascular system to adequately pump blood and remove waste products from exercising.
Use of the usual gym equipments such as the elliptical, rowing or cycling machine for warming up (not more than 10 minutes).