I overheard people in the gym say they didn't even know what "that thing" was until they saw Josh and I use it. This is not uncommon since I've only seen this machine in one other gym; ever.
Machine sissy squats
This is a sissy squat machine. Sissy squats are often performed standing, but there is an actual apparatus for the exercise, as well.
However, not many gyms have them, or they're in an obscure place. If you want to use one ask the gym owner, or a seasoned personal trainer, so you don't wander the floor needlessly.
Use your best judgement
This exercise can be done upright, or with a backward lean, but I'm angled forward. For me, the first position causes knee pain. Please use your best judgement.
Yesterday, while packing to leave work, a woman approached me and said, “You train my friend _____, and she looks fantastic. I saw her the other night and I could see all the changes,” pointing to her arms and shoulders. The compliment was flattering as a personal trainer, but I had to be honest with her. “I’d love to take all the credit, but I have to give credit where credit is due. I can only take credit for two hours a week; after that it’s her.” We continued the conversation for another moment and she was off to her workout, and I was out the door.
On occasion I speak to people who want to get in shape, but they think a work out must be for a full hour. They also assume that short stints of exercise are not as beneficial. However, exercise is a matter of minutes, and any exercise is better than no exercise. It's important to follow exercise guidelines to lose weight and get in shape, but learn to break the rules to exercise especially if you don't have time to work out. Not sure how to fit in your workout? Think of the phrase "divide and conquer."
Photo credit: Bare Necessities
When I train female clients, I tell them that I do not want to see an ounce of bounce during high intensity workouts. In other words; wear a good sports bra.
Some of my clients are very well endowed (up to K), while others are smaller. Regardless of size, it's important to "tame the beast" and keep bounce to a minimum. Because of this, I have been on the hunt for sports bras that minimize bounce, and have been able to find some that may be of interest to women who exercise.
Below you'll see three bra brands that got the thumbs-up from my clients, and me, who swear by the bras we wear.
During hot, humid summers my eczema flares up for outdoor exercise. The heat and sweat forces me back into the gym because I start itching. Since I do not plan on giving up exercise I found that reducing stress, different clothing materials and changing my hygiene products are the best way to minimize itchy, eczema flare-ups. Although I can't change the itching during exercise I can alleviate the itching with preventative care before and after.
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Exercise is work, but it's more work when you suffer from a chronic disease. I am a long-time sufferer of eczema, which is annoying, and painful when infected. Although eczema isn't considered a debilitating disease per se; it is a point of contention to a person who suffers from the itchy, patchy, scaly skin disease.
During my senior year of high school, I began to have red patches of dry skin next to my nose and my hair line. It itched, and even worse, it oozed. To my surprise, it was eczema, and I learned that exercise makes it itch severely.
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Did you follow through on your New Year's fitness resolutions? If you didn't, it's still not too late to reach that goal. Here are some tips to help you fit fitness into your day, and make good on your fitness goal.
It's obvious that one reason to have a training partner is for spotting purposes, but your partner is there for more than spotting. In fact, several exercises are done with both people participating in the exercise. For instance, there are abdominal exercises that are "easier," or can only be completed with two people.
Partner up for supine leg extensions
It's important to keep your lower back flat with good abdominal contractions during supine leg extensions. However, it's harder than it sounds, but this is where your partner comes in. With your partner, lay with your backs on the floor with the tops of your heads across from each other. Your feet should be at opposing ends. Reach and grab hands. From here, you can do supine leg extensions at the same time.
Partner sit ups with locked ankles
Have you done unassisted sit-ups? Or, have you tried them with nothing to hold your feet? It's difficult. If you're not strong your legs come off the ground. You may not reach the top of the sit-up, or you may even give up. Instead, partner sit-ups with locked ankles help you through the movement. Partner sit-ups will help you make it to the top of the abdominal exercise, while your partner motivates you to finish the set.
Leg lift push downs with partner
Leg lift push downs require a partner. There's no way around it. While on your back, and holding on to your partner's ankles, lift your legs off the ground. Your partner will push them down. In the push down use resistance in your legs and abdominal to keep your legs from slamming the ground.
Medicine ball trunk rotations-- Seated oblique twists
Begin as you would a sit-up, but place your back against your partner's back. Pass the medicine ball to each other by rotating the trunk to each side; targeting the obliques. Don't forget to alternate directions so you get both sides.
Medicine ball sit-up throws
Unlike partner sit-ups; you'll need distance for medicine ball sit-up throws. With a short distance between you and your partner's feet, face each other with the medicine ball in the first thrower's hands. The partner catching the medicine ball should lay back to tap the ball on the floor, and sit back up.
You do not need an overly heavy medicine ball, and try not to get hit in the face. You, or your partner, do not want to sustain an injury.
Although fitness is a big focus in America many people are not sure what suffices as "enough" exercise. Since people view the quality and quantity of exerise differently it's important to know the guidelines. This does not mean you can't adjust the guidelines to suit your needs; however, it is the information needed to help set realistic goals.
In the past few days I've heard people make comments about exercise that surprised me. Actually, they didn't really surprise me, but made me think about the different views on exercise. Even though I bodybuild, and train a lot, my views of exercise are not skewed in the sense that people have to train hours on end to by physically fit and healthy.