Tag Archives: strong

How to Measure Your Fitness

Hungry and I make goals every month in a few different categories: Personal, Hungry & Fit, Home, and Fun. This month, one of my personal goals was to create and follow a training program that would help me with the upcoming Tough Mudder we have in a month. Yeah, probably left it a little bit late to start training, but better late than never, right?! Well, as you know from being a loyal subscriber, we are both personal trainers. So in all rights, I could make myself a training plan–I’ve done it many times before. However, even trainers need trainers and I happen to be married to a pretty fantastic one. I whined about making one so he took a pad of paper and drew one up for me instead. Perks! 

The first part of this training plan is measuring my fitness aka performing an assessment of sorts. Luckily, since I am a trainer and I know my away around a gym and loads of exercises, Hungry doesn’t have to stand over me and watch. It’s good to do this before and after a training program to test that program’s effectiveness. So if you’re gearing up to start a new training plan (perhaps from us), make sure to do this assessment first. 

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July 4th Workout

As you’re thinking of your afternoon barbecue, you mull over maybe getting a workout in before you stuff yourself like there’s no tomorrow. However, most gyms are closed today as it is a national holiday. But that never stopped you, right? No gym? No problem. No equipment? No problem. We have created a 7/4 (or July 4th) workout for you to do wherever–at home, at the park, at the beach, at the patio before you eat that burger, etc. In the spirit of 7/4, it’s:

7 exercises

30 seconds each

4 rounds

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TGIF Workout

Thank goodness it’s Friday! Another week has passed and I hope you have some fun (or relaxing) things planned this weekend. Get jazzed up! But you know what will make this weekend even better? A TGIF workout. Yep, you knew it was coming. No, it’s not just because we’re fitness freaks. Getting some exercise in before a weekend can make you feel so much better. We tend to get a little lax when it comes to eating over the weekend, so doing a workout beforehand can remove some guilt that may creep up. This one is for anywhere, you just need to find some type of hill! If you are using a treadmill, just put that incline up!

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The Top 10 Workout Songs for November 2016

Please enjoy a guest post from our friends at Run Hundred!

This month’s top 10 workout songs span a wider tempo range than normal—with the fastest song clocking at more than double the speed of the slowest. Moreover, that’s just the beginning of this playlist’s variety. So, with no further ado, let’s get into the mix.

On the lower end of the spectrum, you’ll find new tunes from The Weeknd and Lady Gaga that are perfect for warming up, cooling down, and stretching. At the other end, you’ll find lightning fast tracks from Green Day and Dagny that will give you an extra boost mid-routine. Those tracks alone incorporate country touches, Scandinavian melodies, pop punk,and Daft Punk. Elsewhere, you can find remixes from Ellie Goulding and The Chainsmokers alongside soundtrack hits by Years & Years (from Bridget Jones’ Baby) and Christina Aguilera (from The Get Down).

Whatever your tastes, new faves await. When you’re ready to make tracks, here’s the full top 10 list—according to the votes logged on workout music site Run Hundred.

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Grip Strength Workout

Whether you’re having a hard time opening a jar of pickles or can’t lockout that 600+ lb deadlift, your grip is an essential component to your overall strength. Instead of buying a pair of straps or the most technologically advanced chalk, the best practice is to develop a grip that can crush apples and tear phone books. These exercises will help you develop stronger hands and have a direct practical application to competitions such as powerlifting and strongman since you’re simulating the same technique. Even if you’re a martial artist who grapples or throws, being able to hold onto a gi is key and no matter what your goal, this routine will push your mind (and forearms) to the limit every set.

It’s important to note that in between every set, I will stretch the muscles that are being contracted for such a long amount of time. For example, I might use a thick rubber band (like the one from broccoli at the grocery) to expand my hands so they and my forearms are not in a state of constant flexion. I train many lab workers, nurses, and bakers who have developed the equivalent of a shin splint in their forearms because they’ve created such an extreme muscular imbalance. We want to avoid that in our effort to strengthen our grip. We don’t want to cause injury when trying to squeeze that level 3 Captain of Crush. 

(I will mention that you’ll notice Captain of Crush work is not included in this workout. I generally superset every exercise in my bodybuilding upper day with my CoC so I avoid using them in this workout.)

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How to Train in the Winter

It can be not-so-fun to train in the winter. Your skin is dry, your hands are freezing, and your muscles won’t warm up. We’ve teamed up with PowerBar to bring you some much-needed tips and guide points so that you can train in the winter. Team Elite athlete and American long distance Josh Cox has come up with the following:

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Hungry’s Top 10 – Fitness Heroes

In NO particular order, these people have inspired me to achieve great things. And even though I’ve fallen far from my greatest physical achievements, these are some of the only people in the world that can push me to climb back up the mountain. Remember, I’ve been a competitive athlete in many sports for my whole life; this list is 25 years in the making. (These are literally the first ten names I thought of today)

1. Hercules – It’s unfair really, he’s not even real. Still, Kevin Sorbo’s portrayal on the Legendary Journeys captivated me for half a decade. My father has called me “Herc” for over twenty years. Whenever I think something isn’t possible, I call upon the power of Olympus and push through. 

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2015 Fitness Test with Gold’s Gym

We’re nearly two weeks into 2015 and you may or may not be on the right track. Your diet isn’t as clean as you wanted. You still haven’t signed up for that new gym membership. You’re so busy getting back to work from the holidays that you barely have time to sleep. No worries, take this fitness test as a wake up call.

Your health can’t wait because a healthy lifestyle is the key to success at home, with family, in school, at work, or wherever you go. Increased energy levels, decreased stress levels, a more functional immune system… don’t those all sound nice. Throw some well-built shoulders and a defined midsection and you’d be feeling pretty well.

As a member of Gold’s Venice, a staff member shot this my way and I must say, I think it’s great. We’ll see what you think about it after you put yourself through these ten grueling minutes of all out exercise targeting every muscle in your body. WAIT… remember, this isn’t made to be a workout, it’s made to see what kind of shape you’re in and what you need to start doing more (or less) of in your life!

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The test itself is simple and self-explanatory. It’s an awesome system but I can’t say the push ups, squats, bench step ups, pull ups, and crunches will be quite as much fun.

Click here to take the Gold’s Gym Fit Test

Post your thoughts, or results, in the comment section below. AND if you’re a real go-getter who wants to make the most of 2015, post a video of your test on YouTube and tag our YouTube channel, HungryandFit!

Don’t Lift Those Heavy Weights!

Last night while getting back into squatting regularly, someone else was making some serious mistakes in their form and training program. I was concerned for their health and said something to their friend, hoping he could convince him to clean up his act for his own good. Then, the friend asked me about his own issue relating to some pain in his shoulders when he is doing what his demonstration seemed like dual bent over posterior deltoid flyes with 35 lb dumbbells.

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 This all leads to my point, to stop lifting heavy weights… if you’re not ready for it. I know you want to get big and strong fast, but this process is a progression that needs to be taken slowly. The muscles in your chest are large and can handle a significant amount of weight, but with poor form (or even with proper form) your shoulder, elbow, and wrist joints might not be conditioned to do the same. It will take correct technique and a significant amount of training to make sure your stabilizing muscles that protect your joints are prepared for a larger load.

 Here are five tips to protect yourself and maximize your effort!

 1. Warmup! It’s important to perform warm up exercises to loosen muscles fibers that are shorter, tighter, and colder from inactivity. Some internal and externals rotations can really help maximize your bench results without fatiguing your shoulders for the lift.

2. Set a rep range and stick to it. If you’re going for five reps of 135 lbs on the bench press, you’re doing that for a reason. Make sure you can perform all of those repetitions almost perfectly before considering doing five reps of any more weight in the same exercise.

3. Use assistance when necessary. I’m not telling you to let your spotter row the weight from your chest, but protect your joints when performing heavier weights or higher repetition ranges. Personally, I’m not a huge fan of using belts, straps, and wraps often (because I want to strengthen my core and stabilizer muscles), but it’s important to protect your body!

4. Rest! Someone at my facility benches and curls weights every single day of the week. When you isolate a body part and damage muscle fibers to the point that they need to be repaired, you actually have to let them repair before you hit that muscle group hard again! Don’t waste your progress by being reckless.

5. Do it properly! When you walk in the gym, leave your ego at the door. No one is going to be impressed by your 1/3 squats with two plates on each side. Well, no one who knows what they’re talking about. Ask for advice, learn proper form, use a coach, and make sure you are getting the most out of the exercises without risking getting injured.

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 So there you have it. Be smart. Condition your joints and strengthen your stabilizer muscles. Everyone complains about elbow pain after doing chest and triceps with flared elbows and heavy skull crushers. Everyone complains about their lower back hurting when they deadlift and squat. Avoid being sidelined and train smarter! And as always, stay hungry and fit!