METHOD FITNESS & HEALTH

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WHAT IS YOUR LIMIT?

Date: Jun 13, 2017

The answer to that would seem obvious however, if you take in to consideration age, body weight, purpose of training, sessions per week then your limit will vary according to which combination fits your physical make up, fitness level, and available time. And also assuming only changes to diet will be made, and supplements are restricted to vitamins and minerals.

Weight training limits usually begin with establishing a one rep max. This approach does make much sense as it doesn’t take in to consideration an individual fitness level and or endurance. It only demonstrates the degree of strength for 1 rep and so therefore it’s meaningless when it comes to setting a basis for weight training and or using weights to train for fitness as opposed to just strength. You’re not going to do a whole workout using a weight that is too heavy to do more than 1 rep.

It would be more accurate to set a limit by using a combination that includes both strength and fitness level and so instead of 1 rep max use a rep level of 8 rep max.

Begin with selecting a dumbbell of say 10kg. Do an 8 rep bicep curl and see how it goes. If it went without a problem then rest for 3 minutes and select a 12kg and repeat the process adding weight until you can’t quite achieve 8 reps and ensuring the technique is 100% correct right through to the last rep

From this you’ve established your maximum dumbbell weight for a one arm bicep curl. Now run through all the exercises in your program using the same method. Correct technique is essential otherwise the time is wasted and you’ll have to start again.

What you’ve now done is set up a base for your weight training exercises.

From here you can stay at that level or increase the weights and reps as strength and endurance permits. Increasing the reps will increase endurance faster than increasing the weights too quickly. When you have reached a good level of endurance (fitness) drop back to 8 reps and add more weight. Repeat the process until you feel you’ve reached your peak combination weight and endurance level.

From there drop back to your original weight and reps for a 2 week period allowing for an overall rest. Build up the weight again gradually making absolutely sure your technique can’t be faulted, so by the time you are back to where you last reached a peak, your strength will start to increase past that peak.

The ‘rest’ period is essentially a time to really make certain the technique is right because without that you can only go so far.

If it gets boring get on the bike, rowing machine, treadmill or cross trainer and hammer those in between weight sessions, but stick with the rest/technique method for long term results.

PERFECTING THE ONE ARM BENT- OVER ROW

Date: Mar 29, 2017

The One Arm Bent-Over Row is a back exercise targeting the Rhomboids, Middle Traps, and Lats.

To work the right hand side, place your left knee and hand on a flat bench. Place the opposite foot on the floor and slightly angled out and back far enough so your trunk is properly braced, your back is straight, and your head is in line with your back. Your trunk is roughly horizontal to the floor.

With your right hand bend at the waist and pick the dumbbell. Now suck in air ready for the lift.

Focus on the centre of your back, activate your core, and releasing air as you go, bring the dumbbell up beside your ribcage. At the top of the lift squeeze your shoulder blades together feeling the rhomboids, lats and the middle traps all working together to achieve a successful lift. Do 8-12 reps and change to the other side.

Remember to always suck in air at the bottom of the eccentric movement just before the concentric movement and then release fully during the concentric movement.

It’s a very useful exercise for increasing back strength and for promoting and maintaining good upper body posture.

THE CONSEQUENCES OF EXCESS SUGAR

Date: Mar 28, 2017

Of course, excess is the level at which each individual’s system cannot tolerate sugar intake. Meaning we all have our excess levels whatever the situation. Which in turn does mean that we should not get anywhere near that level if we wish to lead a healthy existence.

Here is a list of some of the effects excess sugar can have on your system

Sugar can…..

Suppress the immune system
Upset the body’s mineral balance
Produce a significant rise in triglycerides
Reduce helpful high density cholesterol (HDLs)
Promote an elevation of harmful cholesterol (LDLs)
Increase total cholesterol
Contribute to hyperactivity, anxiety, depression,
Concentration difficulties, and crankiness in children
Cause kidney damage
Increase the risk of coronary heart disease
Lead to chromium deficiency
Increase fasting levels of blood glucose
Interfere with absorption of calcium and magnesium.
Produce an acidic stomach
Lead to periodontal disease
Contribute to weight and obesity
Contribute to diabetes
Contribute to osteoporosis
Cause a decrease in insulin sensitivity.
Lead to decreased glucose tolerance
Cause cardiovascular disease
Increase systolic blood pressure
Cause free radical formation in the bloodstream.
Overstress the pancreas, causing damage.
Cause atherosclerosis.
Compromise the lining of the capillaries.
Cause liver cells to divide, increasing the size of the liver.
Increase the amount of fat in the liver.
Cause depression.
Increase the body’s fluid retention.
Cause hormonal imbalance.
Cause an increase in delta, alpha and theta brain waves, which can alter the mind’s ability to think clearly.
Increase blood platelet adhesiveness which increases risk of blood clots and strokes. Increase an insulin response with high-sugar diets compared to low sugar diets.
The list speaks for itself and leaves no doubt as to what a poor diet with excess sugar can do to you. So work through the list and see how your health can be better now and throughout your whole life simply by avoiding unnecessary high sugar intake

Good luck and good health.

PERFECTING THE WIDE GRIP AND THE NARROW GRIP SEATED ROW

Date: Jan 30, 2017

Beginning with the standard narrow grip choose the Seated Row Double-D handle.

Posture comes first so ensure your back is straight and knees slightly bent. Lean forward, keep your back straight, and grasp the D-handle. Your knees will bend a little more to achieve this. Now pull the handle back so your back is in an upright position and your knees are slightly bent, and your arms are straight out but with the elbows slightly bent and your shoulders slightly forward.

Suck in some air, release it at the same time turn on your core and begin to pull the bar back. Now keeping your back straight bring the handle back so it is at chest height but your elbows and shoulders are down and back. Remember it’s a back exercise and with the close grip it’s the middle and lower traps, posterior delts, rhomboids and lats that are doing the work. Feel the squeeze in the centre of the back. By leaning back the upper traps can be worked but this will take some of the focus off the middle and lower traps. Drop the shoulders on the eccentric movement and squeeze the lats for maximum benefit.

To ensure full contraction right across your back focus on the centre of your back on both the concentric and eccentric movement. The target muscles to achieve this are the Rhomboids and Middle Traps which draw your scapula back. Both of these muscles are an important part of exercising for good posture.

For the wide grip seated row choose the 1200mm Lat Revolving Exercise Bar.

Basically, the wide grip is the same as the narrow grip except for the posture and it does put greater emphasis on the shoulders and upper back.

Lean forward and grasp the ends of the bar keeping your shoulders and upper arm as straight out as possible. Keeping your back straight bring the bar back with your shoulders and upper arms as straight out as possible until your posture is upright. Your back is now straight up and your head is in line with your back.

Suck in some air, release it and at the same time turn on your core and begin to pull the bar back with the focus on the middle traps, rhomboids, lats, and delts. Keep the bar at chest height, or slightly higher, throughout the movement. On both the concentric and eccentric phases maintain the same posture throughout.

Experiment with the two positions to determine which feels better but at the same time ensuring that the action you choose is going to result in a strong upright posture and power packed back.