Exercise With Dumbbells

bodybuilding close up dumbbells equipment

Dumbbells are about the most versatile piece of exercise equipment you’ll ever use or own. You can train any body part with them, they’re suitable for anyone-beginners, intermediate and pros-and can be used by people of any age to get fit. They’re also the ideal, regardless of your fitness goals. So whether you’re just looking to trim down, maintain or even build mass, dumbbells can be the right piece of equipment for you. Assuming that you’re doing the movements properly, when you train with dumbbells you mimic the body’s natural movements, considerably reducing the risk of injuring yourself.

The point today is to present a few little known, but highly effective dumbbell exercises-it’s always good to do something new. When the body’s muscles get too accustomed to the same routine day after day, week after week, month after month, your routine’s effectiveness is diminished. That’s why knowledgeable guys change things up every now and then so they can keep seeing gains and achieving the results they want.

Here are a few dumbbell training exercies that you probably haven’t heard of.

Dumbbell thrusters (legs, shoulders): Works the glutes and shoulders at the same time. Place an exercise ball behind your legs. Stand straight holding two dumbbells at shoulder height with palms facing each other about even with your shoulders. Squat down until your butt touches the ball, then thrust upward raising your arms towards the ceiling, while maintaining your palms facing the same direction. Squat down again lowering the dumbbells to the starting position, then repeat.

Dumbbell hamstring curl (hamstrings): Lie face down on a flat bench with your knees hanging over about two to three inches. Have someone tuck a dumbbell vertically between your feet-if you’re limber and not too clumsy, you can manage it yourself. Grasp the front two legs of the bench for stability. Then, without lifting your waist from the bench, keep your knees together tight and raise your toes (and the dumbbell) towards the ceiling until your shins are perpendicular to the floor.

Dumbbell ab crunch (abs): Lie on your back with your knees bent, feet flat on the floor, holding a dumbbell with both hands (one hand over each end of the dumbbell) close to your chest just below your chin. Keeping your butt and lower back on the floor, slowly roll your upper back off the floor, keeping your neck neutral. Pause and hold for a second or two and then return to the starting position and repeat.

Low dumbbell crossover (chest): This awesome move can completely isolate and pump up your pecs. It’s like the Low Cable Crossover but done with dumbbells to further isolate the pectoral muscle. With one foot forward for stability, grasp the dumbbells (hands facing forward), spread your arms until they’re at about a 45-degree angle and your hands are a few inches behind your hips. Lean forward slightly. Bring the dumbbells up and together, using a sweeping arc motion, stopping right in front of your lower chest. Pause for a full second, return to the starting position and repeat. Keep your arms slightly bent to be sure that you’re fully isolating the pecs.

Dumbbell press and fly combo (chest): This double-duty exercise keeps the pectoral muscles under tension throughout the movement. Position yourself for a regular dumbbell chest press. When your arms are fully extended, instead of dropping them back down to your chest, then slowly arc them out in a fly movement-without changing the position of your hands-until you get a nice stretch. Pause, return to the starting position and repeat.

Zero impact dumbbell row (back): Stand with your knees somewhat bent and lean over slightly, keeping your back straight. Hold the dumbbells so they’re in front of your thighs (palms facing your legs). Your elbows should be slightly bent. Bring the dumbbells out, back and up behind you in an arc, swinging your elbows back like a pendulum but maintaining control of the weight, keeping your back straight. Focus on contracting the back muscles. Return to the starting position and repeat.

Reverse incline hammer curl (biceps): Use fairly light weights for this one-it really isolates the bicep. Sit backwards on an incline bench adjusted to a 60- to 70-degree angle. With your arms hanging straight down, hold the dumbbells with your thumbs up, palms facing each other (hammer curl position). Curl the weights up until the just touch your shoulders. Squeeze, pause and repeat. If you pull your elbows back just a bit, it will put more emphasis on the long head of the biceps, which can otherwise be tough to train.

Wrong way tricep pullover (triceps): Lie sideways (perpendicular) with your upper back on a flat bench as though you were going to do a dumbbell pullover for your chest. Grasping one dumbbell with both hands, bring your arms up and behind your head-again, as though you are going to do a dumbbell pullover. But instead of trying to keep your arms straight, stretch your arms back, maintain the upper arms in a fixed position and bend your elbows down, lowering the dumbbell and stretching the triceps. Pause, squeeze, return to the starting position and repeat.

By Mike Westerdal 

Mike is the creator of the illustrated guide, “Dumbbell Routines & Exercises eBook”, that will Help You Increase Your Muscle Size And Improve Your Physical Fitness In 90 Days Or You Get To Keep This Breakthrough eBook FREE! More information Click Here

 

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Diet For Weight Loss

woman girl fat fitness

There are so many weight loss diet plans available that it is difficult to decide which one to use. The guiding factor should be to find a healthy plan. The generally accepted figure for healthy weight loss is 1-2 lbs a week which equates to about 3,500-7000 calories. Using these figures, a person who wishes to lose 2 lbs a week should cut about 1000 calories from their daily diet. Calorie counting however, can become very tedious very quickly.

There are many diet plans claiming that if you use their system, you can lose much more than 2 lbs a week. The claims may or may not be true, I don’t need weight loss diets myself, but I do research them for others. I have seen all types of diets work for some people and I have seen the same diet plan work for one person but not another. As with most physically related things, I think It all comes down to body type and dedication (or lack of dedication).

Weight loss can be achieved without a purchased diet plan but you have to do the research for yourself and this can be very time consuming. Basically, sugars and starchy foods should be cut back substantially, make sure that you eat foods containing protein and fats, and make sure to exercise. Eat fats for weight loss? the short answers is that fats are not all the same and some are beneficial to health. Saturated fats can occur naturally in meat and dairy products, unsaturated fats come from plants, vegetables, olives, nuts, and seeds and some fish. Trans fats can occur naturally in certain foods and meat. The artificial trans fat (hydrogenated) in some foods, normally heavily processed, is not healthy and should be avoided. I work on the theory that naturally occurring fats in food can’t be all that bad, but everything should be done in moderation and be wary of any processed food that has “light” or “low fat” printed on the packaging.

Weight training is a great exercise for weight loss. To lose weight, a body must burn more calories than it uses and after a weight training session, the body continues to burn calories. As you add more muscle, you should find it easier to attain and keep to your target weight because muscle burns more calories than fat during the day.

Men seem to lose weight more easily than women and this observation is backed up by science. Men have more lean muscle tissue than women and the muscle tissue burns more calories than fat. Studies have found that the different results, between men and women are very obvious at the start of the diet program but tend to even out over the longer term.

Another issue with weight loss in the present day, is the quality of our food. Science has been tinkering with natural produce and the results on food quality are not really fully known. We can only do our best to find the most natural of products to consume.

The conclusion I have arrived at regarding diets is to stay away from a diet program that promotes  only one type of constituent such as fat, protein or carbohydrates while cutting out others almost completely. I tend to like the programs which have a more balanced approach and also suggest that exercise should be completed along with the dietary component. My key components to a great weight loss program are healthy food with a traditional balance of protein, carbs and fats, exercise, primarily resistance training and the determination to succeed.

 

 

Water For Health

clean clear cold drink

Is drinking water necessary for good health?, the answer is yes, but the water that you drink needs to be as pure as possible. It seems that obtaining untainted food and drink is virtually impossible today but just by attempting to obtain the most high quality, natural food and drink products will help.

Water makes up approximately 60% of the male adult body and 55% of the female adult body. We are constantly losing water from our bodies throughout the day and this needs to be replaced. An average human loses 4.5 to 6.5 lbs of water during the day through exhalation, perspiration, urination and consumption of heavily processed foods.

 

How Much Water?

The general health industry advice is 8 ounces of water, 8 times a day. There is a wide range of views on daily intake from independent researchers but the 8 ounces, 8 times a day seems to be a minimum. Studies have shown that we cannot survive more that a few days without drinking water but we can survive for a few weeks without food. The required daily water intake for maximum bodily efficiency is (as is most everything else in life) highly dependent on the individual.

Can I Drink Too Much Water?

Studies say yes. The medical term for this is Hyponatremia ( low sodium in the blood) and this can occur due to the amount of water you drink over a short period of time rather than the total amount during a day. In basic terms, a large amount of water consumed in a short period of time will lower blood sodium levels and could, in the most severe cases, lead to death. I would think that moderation is the key to avoiding this issue.

The Purity of Water

There are many factors affecting the purity of our drinking water. The Municipal supply to our houses and businesses has chemicals added to it due to the “purification process” and the pipes carrying the water can also add unwanted chemicals into the supply. Fluoride is added to many Municipal water supplies. The Fluoride is added to prevent tooth decay but there are rumors that it is not effective in preventing this. Some Countries have banned, rejected or stopped fluoridation of their water supply. China has banned it’s use, most Western European countries have stopped fluoridation and Japan has rejected it’s use due to it’s toxicity. My opinion?, I would rather that Fluoride was left out of the water supply and I’ll take care of my teeth myself.

Obtaining Pure Water

I have researched this topic in a casual manner on and off. I buy bottled “spring” water from the local grocery stores to drink and use for cooking but I know that the quality ranges from good, to variable, to suspect.  The “spring” water is usually packaged in plastic bottles and the chemicals in the plastic can tend to leech into the water. The claim of “pure spring water” in bottled water products has been shown to be suspect in certain cases and the Fluoride content is unknown. I think that the only sure way of obtaining the purest water is to filter it yourself. There are several companies that supply whole house filters for residential use and these filters can remove heavy metals, pharmaceutical residue, fluoride, bacteria and more. The best, most effective filter systems are expensive but do I aim to install one eventually.

Conclusion

The body needs water and at the end of the day, drinking any water ( that is not infected) is better than not drinking it. We should strive to drink the purest, most untainted water daily, but this can be expensive, time consuming and involve much research. My personal opinion is that drinking water in it’s basic form, not in the form of coffee, tea, flavored drinks etc, is essential. If you are carry out fitness training or have a physical job, then my experience tells me that you need more than the 8 ounces, 8 times a day in order to function efficiently. It is a pity that we can’t get the pure drinking water that we need to function at optimum performance easily, but “it is what it is”.