Kettlebells are weights that look a bit like a bowling ball with a handle. Kettlebells are a great addition to your fitness routine that can help you accelerate your results when used properly.
It is important to note that kettlebells are frequently used improperly. If you are considering this type of workout, do yourself a favor and consult a personal trainer to get some pointers on safety and proper form. This will help you get the most out of your workout and avoid injury.
1. Two Arm Kettlebell Row
You'll need two kettlebells for this one. Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, knees bent. Now, bend over and pick up the kettlebells, pulling them up toward your stomach. Keep elbows close to your sides. Put down and repeat.
2. Goblet Squat
Power up your squats with a kettlebell. Hold your bell with both hands. Keep the bell toward your chest with elbows close to the body. Do your squat. It is important to maintain good form so you don't get hurt. Remember to keep your back straight, don't hang your knees over your toes and don't hold the bell out in front of you; keep it close to your chest.
3. Lunge Press
Basically, you are going to do a standard lunge, but you are going to hold a kettlebell in front of you and then when you lunge forward you are going to raise your arm (opposite arm of the leg you are leading with) above your head.
4. High Pull
Stand with feet a bit wider than shoulder-width, feet pointed out. Set bell between legs, squat down, grab with one hand and use hips to drive yourself up to standing, raising bell upward, elbow out.
5. Russian Twist
Work those abs: Sit on the floor with legs bent and feet shoulder-width apart. Holding bell at chest, lean into a 45-degree angle. Now, rotate torso, left to right, swinging bell with your body.
6. One Arm Floor Press
Lay on back, legs straight out in front. grab bell with one arm, palm facing in, raise and rotate wrist so palm faces feet.
Bell sits on floor between your feet. Squat down and grab with both hands. Stand up. Keep core engaged and back straight.
A personal trainer can give you the guidance you need to get the results you want. Ralph Roberts can customize a fitness plan according to your goals and current level of fitness. You can find Ralph at the Downtown Athletic Club in Amarillo.
Maverick’s Boys and Girls Club is giving you an opportunity to discover some new activities and have fun along the way with Maverick's Amazing Race. Just like the Amazing Race series, teams of contestants will compete against one another in both physical and mental challenges. These challenges will be spread throughout a 5-mile area of Amarillo.
I will be hosting 12 different stations. Each station will have a different exercise or activity and participants will have 1 minute to complete each circuit.
The race will be held on June 6. There will be prizes starting at $1500 for the first team who across the finish line. This is not just a great way to get some activity in, it is also a great way to help our community.
Registration will be $35 per person. For everyone that raises additional money over the $100 amount, they will receive 30 seconds off their teams race time.
Races like this are a great way for you to find an activity you love. In fact, you may just find that perfect activity that leads you to a lifelong passion for exercise and fitness.
So whether you want to grab your best friend, your partner, or your neighbor and race, or you want to go it alone, Maverick's Amazing Race is sure to be a day that gets you up and moving. See you there!
Most of us want to be healthy and fit, but not everyone achieves that goal. What stands in the way of regular, routine exercise? Motivation science researchers discovered the answer to this question back in 2011, and it just might surprise you.
The Research Findings
While most people assume that a lack of motivation is the driving factor in this fitness crisis, that’s actually not the case. It’s true that motivation may be one factor in why people work out, just as perceived value, guilt, and shame contribute to people’s chances of exercising. But what trumped all these factors to be defined as the leading predictor? Convenience.
People who find convenient ways to work out in their day-to-day lives are more likely to stick with an exercise regimen. Check out these five tips to make exercise more convenient.
More and more people are turning to strength training not only to gain muscle, but also to burn calories and lose fat. Research has shown that adding strength training to your exercise regimen boosts your workout, but what’s the best way to get results – free weights or machine weights? Below are three reasons to ditch the machines and go for free weights.
Improve Function In Your Daily Life
The whole point of strength training is to become stronger. But what good is being stronger if you’re only able to use that strength while sitting in certain positions, such as those used with machine weights? Free weights provide you with training that actually improves your performance outside of the gym. Normal, everyday life tasks like lifting your kids, moving furniture, or going grocery shopping become easier the more you exercise with free weights.
Get More Bang For Your Buck
Unlike machine weights, free weights aren’t restricted to one specific path. When using them, you’re forced to work more muscles in order to maintain control of the weights and of your body. This causes your stabilizer muscles to work together with your core muscles, giving you a more efficient, all-over training session. If that’s not enough to convince you, the more muscles you use during a given exercise, the more calories you burn. So, for the same amount of effort, you get a much larger return on investment.
Muscle imbalances are a huge factor in training injuries. Exercising with free weights is an efficient way to decrease these imbalances and reduce your risk of injury. Not sure why? Think of this example: using machine weights allows you to inadvertently use one arm more in order to make up for the weaker arm. Free weights don’t give you that option. Each arm is responsible for an individual weight, allowing you to easily determine any muscle imbalances that may be present.
There are numerous additional benefits of incorporating free weights into your established workout routine: convenience, portability and storage ease, to name a few. To learn more about how free weights can help you get fit, check in with personal trainer Ralph Roberts.
There’s a lot of conflicting advice out there regarding weight loss, exercise and how to get toned and strong; it's no wonder so many people get overwhelmed and don't know where to start.
Should I Start With Cardio Or Weight Training?
Both cardio and weight training are an important part of fitness. But which do you focus on? And which do you start with? The answer to this question depends largely on your goals. What is your number one priority? Are you just trying to lose some weight? Are you wanting to develop visible muscle tone, or are you just trying to get all-around healthier?
I Want To Lose Weight
It may sound strange, but if weight loss is your goal, then you should start out with weight training. Studies show that lifting weights elevates your heart rate. Follow up with cardio to get the maximum calorie-burning benefit. Also, you will increase your energy levels and metabolic lean muscle mass.
I Want To Train For A Race
If you have your eye on a finish line, whether it be running or cycling, do your cardio first. This comes down to prioritizing. Studies show that whatever muscle group you work out first becomes the strongest. So, if you start with cardio, you will be giving priority to the muscles you need most for your race.
What If I Want To Stay Healthy And Fit?
If you want to boost your overall health, fitness and vitality, you don't necessarily need to become too concerned with what you do first. Try to achieve a balance between cardiovascular exercise and weight training. Both are good for your health. The most important thing is to enjoy your workout so that you are more likely to stick with it!
A personal trainer can help you reach your goals and reach them faster. Your workouts will be more efficient when your personal trainer customizes them for your goals and level of fitness. Ralph Roberts can create a comprehensive plan just for you. You can find Ralph at the Downtown Athletic Club in Amarillo.
You probably already know that too much sugar is bad for you. It causes a variety of health problems, including obesity, diabetes, inflammation and more. When it comes to weight loss, many people focus on cutting calories or cutting fat but often neglect to cut sugar.
Another problem is that sugar content in foods is sneaky. You may not realize just how much sugar you are really consuming.
How Can I Cut Back On Sugar?
Cutting sugar may feel like an overwhelming task, especially once you realize just how much sugar is in the foods you eat every day. Not only that, but sugar is addictive, and stopping it is sometimes easier said than done. Here are some tips to make it easier.
1. Avoid obvious sources of sugar. Cutting soda and candies is a good first step. These are full of sugar and don't contain any useful ingredients. Replace soda with mineral water with lemon and snack on fruit like strawberries or raspberries instead of candy.
Fruit also contains sugar (some more than others). Berries are delicious, filled with nutrients and lower in sugar than fruits like pineapples and mangoes, for example.
2. Read labels. Most packaged and prepared foods contain a lot of sugar. This may come in forms such as high fructose corn syrup, sucralose, etc. Anything that ends in "ose" is a sugar. This includes lactose, which is found in dairy products. Condiments are a major culprit. Ketchup is high in sugar, as is mayo.
Many "health" foods contain a ton of sugar. Don't be fooled by "low calorie" or "low fat" labels. Those statements don't mean that a food is healthy. In fact, many foods that cut fat just make up for the loss of flavor by increasing the sugar content.
3. Replace the sugar. If sugar is a big part of your diet, you can't just cut it and leave it at that. You might struggle and find yourself falling off the wagon. Increase your intake of other healthy foods to help you stay off sugar. Consume more protein. Find low or no sugar alternatives to some of your favorite foods. For example, if you are having a chocolate craving, try dark chocolate.
Drink lots of water, don't let yourself get hungry and get plenty of exercise. Over a surprisingly short period of time, your sugar cravings will subside. In fact, you may lose your sweet tooth altogether. Even after just a few days you will find that your tolerance for sweets goes down considerably.
For more tips on nutrition, fitness and health, consider a personal trainer. Ralph Roberts at the Downtown Athletic Club in Amarillo can create a custom fitness plan for you.
There are a lot of things that can get in the way of exercise. Hectic schedules, lack of energy and lack of motivation are big ones. Another major roadblock to fitness is pain, and back pain is particularly difficult to overcome.
It can be tempting to think that the best route is to take it easy and not strain yourself, but for chronic back pain, exercise is often one of the best ways to get relief.
How Do I Exercise With Back Pain?
First of all, if you have an injury or experience back pain, you should always consult your doctor before beginning any type of exercise program. With that said, the best exercises for people with back pain are low-impact moves that don't put extra stress on the body and put you at lower risk for injury.
Things To Avoid
What Are Low-Impact Cardio Exercises?
Unless your physician tells you not to, walking is one of the best low-impact exercises out there. It's easy, you don't need special equipment and it helps you lose weight, increase heart rate and there is low risk of injury. Wear good shoes, it makes a difference.
Cycling is a great way to get fit without the jarring impact of jogging or other exercises. You can ride a bicycle or stationary bikes at the gym.
3. Elliptical Machine
This workout is even lower impact than walking on a treadmill, and gives your upper body a workout, too.
Yoga can not only get you in great shape, but can also reduce pain, strengthen your core and increase flexibility.
If you are trying to find the right workout for you or you are not seeing results with your current fitness routine, a personal trainer can help. By creating a custom workout based on your goals, current level of fitness and lifestyle, a personal trainer can increase your chances of success. Ralph Roberts works with clients to help them achieve their goals and get results. You can find Ralph Roberts at the Downtown Athletic Club in Amarillo.
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