Archive for the ‘Exercise’ Category

Standard Back Exercises

Barbell Bent-over Row

  • Bend knees slightly and bend over bar with back straight. Grasp bar with wide overhand grip.
  • Pull bar to upper waist. Return until arms are extended and shoulders are stretched downward.
  • Repeat. 10-12 reps. 3 sets.
Inverted Row
  • Lay on back under fixed horizontal bar. Grasp bar with wide overhand grip.
  • Keeping body straight, pull body up to bar. Return until arms are extended and shoulders are stretched forward.
  • Repeat. 12-16 reps. 3 sets.
  • Reach up and grasp bar with wide overhand grip.
  • Pull body up until neck reaches height of hands. Lower body until arms and shoulders are fully extended.
  • Repeat. Do as much as you can until it becomes difficult. Once it does add 2.
  • For underhanded pull-ups reverse hand grip.

When starting out with a back exercise routine pick 3 exercises, such as the ones above, and master them before moving on to new routines.  Your back muscles are the largest group of muscles in your body and once you strengthen them the rest of your body starts to fall in line with proper training.

3 Things You Don’t Know About Your Back 

excerpt from Men’s Health Magazine.

1. Building your back can torch your belly fat.
 That’s because the more muscle you train, the hotter your fat furnace burns. And there are no larger muscles than the latissimus dorsi, a.k.a. the lats. Master the pull-up to bolster these muscles fast. 

2. Your arms will lift more weight than the larger back muscles if you let them. For a better back workout, initiate rowing movements by squeezing your shoulder blades back. Then think about pulling the weight with your elbows, not  your hands. 

3. Anytime you train your back or chest, or even sit at your desk, your lats become stiff. Since these muscles attach to your spine and wrap around to your ribs, they’re used in most upper-body activities. Stretch your lats every day to stay loose.


Posted: September 28, 2011 in Exercise
Tags: , , , , ,

Here’s a great site to keep track of your workouts.  Whether it’s running, biking, hiking, in the gym, at home or you just wanna log your moods for the day.  You can participate in challenges to test yourself and join groups with other like-minded exercisers.  Click on the image to be taken to site.


Squats are one of the best exercises for our hips, thighs and buns.

  1. Stand with your feet hip-width apart.  For extra-burn you can hold weights at shoulder level on your sides.
  2. Bend your knees, then lower into a squat making sure you keep your knees behind the toes.  Do this by sticking your butt out behind you. Keep your torso contracted.
  3. Use your heels to lift you up.
  4. Do 2-3 sets.  10-16 reps each.
Step Ups
Step Ups are another great exercise for your buns and you can do them almost anywhere.
  1. Start with smaller steps if you are a beginner and work your way up.
  2. You want to eventually achieve a height where you are at about a 90 degree angle with your knee.
  3. Apply all your weight to the lifting leg.
  4. Lower down and switch. Take it slow and concentrate on the lifting leg.
  5. Do it until you feel the burn. Rest 30 seconds. Do another set.
Lunges are a great exercise because you target several muscle groups at one time.  You are working your glutes, hamstrings, quads and calves all in this one exercise.
  1. Stand with feet about shoulder with apart.  You want both knees to be at about 90 degrees at bottom of movement, so adjust accordingly.
  2. Bend your knees and lower your back knee toward the floor while keeping your front heel down and your front knee directly above your front foot.
  3. You can hold dumbbells at your side for added intensity.
  4. Keeping your posture straight and your abs tight return to your starting position.  Do not lock the knees.
  5. Do 2-3 sets. 10-16 reps each.
Some other fun outdoor activities that are great for busting those buns into shape are:
Go find some great trails in your area and explore them.  Set goals for yourself. Attain them.  It’s a great way to explore your area and listen to some music or audio-books.
Recently I discovered some new music online and set some new goals for myself.  I walked about 6 miles just enjoying the scenery and solitude and the new band (well new to me anyway) that I had found.
What are some goals that you set for yourself?


Here are some exercises that are good for starting your bicep workout:

These exercises only require a barbell and dumbbells.

DRAG CURLS:  This exercise will help you build mass.

    1. Grab a barbell with a supinated grip (palms facing forward) and get your elbows close to your torso and back. This will be your starting position.
    2. As you exhale, curl the bar up while keeping the elbows to the back as you “Drag” the bar up by keeping it in contact with your torso. Tip: As you can see, you will not be keeping the elbows pinned to your sides, but instead you will be bringing them back. Also, do not lift your shoulders.
    3. Slowly go back to the starting position as you keep the bar in contact with the torso at all times.
    4. Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.

Variations: You can use dumbbells.

HAMMER CURLS: This exercise is great for biceps and forearms.

  1. Stand up with your torso upright and a dumbbell in each hand being held at arms length. The elbows should be close to the torso.
  2. The palms of the hands should be facing your torso. This will be your starting position.
  3. While holding the upper arm stationary, curl the right weight forward while contracting the biceps as you breathe out. Continue the movement until your biceps is fully contracted and the dumbbells are at shoulder level. Hold the contracted position for a second as you squeeze the biceps. Tip: Only the forearms should move.
  4. Slowly begin to bring the dumbbells back to starting position as your breathe in.
  5. Repeat the movement with the left hand. This equals one repetition.
  6. Continue alternating in this manner for the recommended amount of repetitions.

Variations: There are many possible variations for this movement. For instance, you can perform the exercise sitting down on a bench with or without back support and you can also perform it by doing both arms at the same time.

BARBELL CURLS:  This exercise targets your biceps.

  1. Stand up with your torso upright while holding a barbell at a shoulder-width grip. The palm of your hands should be facing forward and the elbows should be close to the torso. This will be your starting position.
  2. While holding the upper arms stationary, curl the weights forward while contracting the biceps as you breathe out. Tip: Only the forearms should move.
  3. Continue the movement until your biceps are fully contracted and the bar is at shoulder level. Hold the contracted position for a second and squeeze the biceps hard.
  4. Slowly begin to bring the bar back to starting position as your breathe in.
  5. Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.


  • You can also perform this movement using a straight bar attachment hooked to a low pulley. This variation seems to really provide a good contraction at the top of the movement.
  • You may also use the closer grip for variety purposes.

Now not all of us are gonna look like Matthew McConaughey, informing the director that this might be a good time in the movie for him to take his shirt off.  Or even Ryan Reynolds beefing up for his role in Blade Trinity.

But what we can do is learn some of the exercises they do to get ready for the big screen.

TOP 5 AB Workouts For Anyone

NUMBER 1: Plank on Elbows

Assume a push up position, but with your elbows bent and your weight resting on your forearms. Your body should form a straight line. Now brace your abs as if someone were about to punch you in the gut. Hold for 30 seconds. Rest. Do 3 reps.



NUMBER 2: The Side Plank

Lie on your left side and prop your upper body up on your left forearm. Raise your hips until your body forms a straight line from ankles to shoulders. Now brace your abs and hold for 30 seconds. Roll over onto your right side and repeat. Rest 30 seconds, and do 2 more sets.



NUMBER 3: Hip/Leg Raise

Lie down on a flat bench/floor with your legs up and perpendicular to the bench/floor. Lift your hips slightly off the bench by contracting your lower abs, hold for three seconds, and lower your hips. Keep your back flat on the bench/floor, your legs straight and lower your legs until they almost form a straight line with the rest of your body. Hold for a count of 3 and then bring back to starting position. Do 10-12 reps.



NUMBER 4: Long Arm Crunch

Lie on mat with arms extended out straight behind head with arms kept close to the ears.  Contract the abs and lift shoulder blades off of floor. Keep your arms straight and avoid straining the neck. Do 1-3 sets of 12-18 reps.  You can add intensity by adding a lightweight dumbbell to hands.



NUMBER 5: Ab Flutter Kicks

Lie flat on your back with arms resting palms down by your side. Lift heels about 6 inches off floor with slight bend in the knees. Quickly move your legs up and down in a scissor like motion. Continue per your level of fitness. The longer you can go the more progress you are making.


Do these exercises at least 5 days a week for 3 months along with a nutritional diet and you’ll be seeing some crazy results.

Just remember that these celebrity types have personal trainer and dietitians…. rough life.