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Author: Karr Fager

Karr is an athlete enthusiast who aims to become the best all around athlete he can be. He owns and runs Fitness Hideout as well as Baseball Hideout.

Awesome TRX Workout Plan – Full Body Workout Routine

These are new to me, and they’re pretty cool. I first saw them hanging from the gym ceiling and wondered what on earth those things were. Two things about these is that they are not resistance tubing, and there are no weights involved. No resistance tubing means the force from the rope is equal throughout the workouts. That is one thing I don’t love about resistance tubing, because the tighter it gets, the harder it gets. This makes the initial push easy and the end unreasonable hard.

With these, core strength is absolutely necessary. Not only does overall body strength matter, but for each and every workout, your core is being pushed to its max. I highly recommend these for athletes. You won’t regret it.

To start, you’ll need a kit like this:

The Workout (4 day/week):

 

Day 1: Chest, Quads, Back

Chest workouts by Trainvernacker.com

Chest Flies

Chest Press

TRX Push Up

TRX Incline Chest Press

TRX Chest Hug

Bernie Push Up

Elevated Hand Push Up

Chest Press Variation #1

Upper Back Row (by MensHealth.com)

Fit Squad‘s Back Workout (Row Pulls and Roll Over Pulls)

Tony Cress‘ Killer TRX Leg Workout

Day 2: Biceps, Shoulders

Bicep workouts by CoreTrainingTips.com

Biceps Curl

One Hand Bicep Curl

Shoulder exercises by Trainervanacker.com

T Deltoid Raise

W Deltoid Raise

I Deltoid Raise

Y Deltoid Raise

High Row

Day 3: Triceps, Hamstrings, Calves

TRXtraining.com‘s Tricep Press

Scott Abel Coaching‘s Standing Calf Raise

TRX Hamstring Curl Variations

StreamFITtv‘s Giant Sets for Bodacious Backside

Top 6 Resistance Band Workout Routines – Best Resistance Band Exercises

Resistance Bands are probably one of my favorite ways to workout. They are so versatile, but not many people use them. I’d say the best part about them is that they are extremely portable. You can’t take with you a barbell, a set of 5 dumbbells, and a bench if you head out of town on a business trip for a week. You can, however, take a set of resistance bands in a small bag with you. You can work you legs, arms, core…Man, I’ll just say it, you can do practically anything with these.

I am not completely biased. I do understand the limits that come with these. While I found upper body mostly easy to find workouts for Read more

New Baseball Program

Want more out of your baseball game? I know I did. I might have lost my chance, but you know what they always say, learn from your mistakes. I sure have, and I want you to learn BEFORE your mistakes.

If you have the skills and talents to go far in baseball, I want to give you the tools to go further. If you think you are strong, I want to help you be stronger.

I know far too well what it feels like to head home early in tournaments. Believe it or not, in high school I was in the section finals (one win away from state) two times. Both times we lost. It felt horrible the first time, and the second time I just about hung my glove up for the last time because of the anger that was inside me. I relive that game ever too often in my head, thinking of all of the ways that me and my teammates could have been the ones dogpiling at the end of the game. If you are wondering, we lost the game in the bottom of the 8th inning on a walk-off.
Sadly, I have a video of it…(haven’t decided if I want to show you that just yet)
My goal for you, after reading this book, is to be able to have the tools needed to hit that ball 50 feet OVER the fence. Whether you are in high school, college, or training to go pro, this workout program WILL and DOES work. They say to study successful people and do what they do. This whole program is based on taking a mix of professional baseball players’ workout regimens, and combining them to create the ultimate army of baseball players.
Before getting into the program, I want you to know where I am coming from and why I am writing this baseball workout program. I truly want to help you. I want to make sure you don’t make the same mistakes I did that cost me a state tournament experience and POSSIBLY MY BASEBALL CAREER.  I made (big picture) mainly two mistakes:
1) I skipped leg day (mostly from the fear of not really knowing how to “do” leg day) 
2) I didn’t work my arm into shape the way that a baseball player should
I went to a very small high school. It was a class of about 45 (23 boys) students. Ten of those (almost half of the guys) were on the baseball team. The good thing about being a small school is that we didn’t have to be as big and strong as the bigger schools were. The bad thing about that was that we weren’t big and strong.
Our coach gave us a workout program the summer before our senior year. It included three different workout days: upper body, lower body, and a mixed day. It was probably the most basic workout program you can get, but it was good for beginning lifters. I had been “lifting” at home ever since 9/10th grade, but I didn’t know a lot or use very heavy weights. I also didn’t work my legs because the girls don’t see those on the basketball court or at the beach, right? The consequences of not working my legs was a loss in batting power and probably a lower batting average. In my defense (not an excuse), I did sprain my ankle prior to my senior basketball season, which halted any weight training for a couple of months, and by the time my ankle was mostly healed, it was too late to build up muscle before the baseball season started.
The program we had also did not focus on our throwing shoulder or shoulder blade/back muscles. It had shoulder workouts, but not ones specifically for throwing. We also were not taught dynamic stretching, which has been found in many studies to get better results than static stretching prior to sports events. The consequences of this for me was a throbbing arm after every game during my senior year. I lost a lot of arm strength and was not as good of a shortstop as I had been known to be in the past.
Baseball wasn’t much fun for me during or after my senior year. I want baseball to be fun for you, and I want you to be able to play healthy until YOU make the choice to quit. Now accidents and injuries sometimes happen that you really can’t do much to prevent, but in my case it could have been prevented.
This program will focus on three things:
1) Stretching prior to AND after workouts and throwing
2) Full body muscle strengthening (including arm-targeting workouts and exercises)
3) Speed and agility training
Let’s get into it. We will start of with stretching: when and how to do it.
DYNAMIC STRETCHING 
Contrary to common belief, baseball is not a slow or lollygagging sport. I’m sure I don’t have to tell you that. Explosiveness, power, acceleration, and agility are all better suites for baseball. The swing needs speed, power, quickness, and control. Pitching takes balance, speed, and control. For fielding, agility, speed, strength, and balance are all a must to excel at the sport.
We can’t use that speed, power, quickness, control, balance, agility and strength if our muscles aren’t properly warm and loosened up. As I stated a bit earlier, dynamic stretching is very important to getting our bodies ready for exercising, working out, and performing during games. Stretching afterwards is also important, but should we stretch the same way before and after working out? Absolutely not.

Is Eating Cereal a Good Idea? – Best and Worst Breakfast Choices

When I wake up in the morning, the first thing I think is, “What’s for breakfast?” Breakfast is, or course, the most important meal of the day. There is some truth to that. Maybe even more truth than we think.

Some people believe that not eating breakfast will help with weight loss. Others, such as training athletes, believe eating Read more

My Journey to Find the Best Beverage to Drink as an Athlete – My Findings…

I keep hearing about how bad Powerade really is for me. We as consumers are always shown that Powerade and Gatorade are the best sports drinks and that they are the best fuel replenishers for us as athletes. Well I have finally decided to do some research on this topic. I’ll be looking at what is really in these drinks and how bad or good they really are. I will also do the unthinkable, and compare these sports drinks to soda.

The first drink I will be looking at is a very common and popular soda drank throughout the U.S., Mountain Dew.

Mountain Dew Label

Notice that sugar count. I’m not too worried about the calories or sodium, because obviously a sports drink will have more sodium than pop to replenish our salts.  Carbs don’t bother me either. Now let’s look at Powerade’s label.

Powerade label

This is a 12 oz. (355 ml) bottle, so it is the same size as the Mountain Dew can above. The Mountain Dew bottle had 46 g of sugars, Powerade has 21 g. And note that Powerade bottles are usually bigger than soda cans. A regular size Powerade bottle has 34 g of sugar. Just 12 g less than Mountain Dew. That alone should scare you.

Now remember, the ultimate goal of Powerade is to replenish carbs, vitamins and minerals, and electrolytes. But is drinking all of that sugar really worth it or should we switch to something else. Before we decide (actually I’ll let you decide for yourself), let’s take a look as some other sports drinks.

Gatorade Label

First realize that this is a 20 oz. bottle of Gatorade. The other labels were for 12 oz. bottles, so Gatorade does seem to have a bit less sugar than Powerade, but the difference is not by much.

Vitamin Water Label

I think most nutritionists will agree that Vitamin Water is not healthy. Although it does include some vitamins and minerals, there is just too much sugar and sweeteners that are added. These drinks, along with Powerade, Gatorade, and any other “sports drink” are especially bad to drink for non-athletes because of the calorie and carbohydrate intake. Drinking these without fitness activity can cause fat gain.

Aspire label
Aspire Sports Beverage Label

Out of any sports drink, this one might be towards the top of the list. Aspire is a smaller company that has just recently had their sports drink line gain popularity. Sugars are at 8 g, less than half of what is in most other 12 oz. drinks. The downside to this sports drink is that (as I have personally drank some of these during athletic events) they don’t taste very good. Soda is good to drink with a cheeseburger, pizza, or pretty much any time. Powerade tastes not quite as good, but is still drinkable with a good dinner or snack.




The problem is that the drinks, like Aspire, that are more healthy (more like less unhealthy) for us just don’t taste good. So, as a general rule, the more sugar the better the taste. Not in all cases, but in most. So that led me on a journey to find a sports drink that tasted good and that I wouldn’t feel bad about drinking.

What did I find? Not much…

I first looked at protein shakes. They are obviously more popular in the weight room rather than the basketball court or football field, but I am keeping an open mind. I actually found some claims that were contrary to my prior beliefs.

Take this Gold Standard 100% Whey Protein…

Whey Protein Isolate Label Gold Standard
Whey Protein Isolate Gold Standard (Double Rich Chocolate) Label

The first thing that pops out to me (and I’m sure most of you) is the protein: 24 g. The sugar is extremely low, sodium is high (usually good), and everything else seems to check out. What I realized here is that I don’t even usually check the labels on protein powders. The very first thing I do when checking to see if protein powders are healthy or not is the ingredients. I have compiled a list of ingredients you want to stay away from as much as possible:

-Artificial sweeteners
-Gluten
-Glucose, sucralose
-Milk solids/powders
-Soy
-Casein
-Dextrins/Maltodextrin

And actually as I researched more, the more findings I found that a ton of protein in the form of powder isn’t always even the best, or good in general. What we as athletes are looking for in a sports drink (yes, even for weightlifting) is a little bit of protein and a lot of carbohydrates. That was very surprising to me because I was always told that eating carbohydrates before athletic events will lead to the best outcome because it gives us energy.

The fact of the matter is that building muscle is possible without protein. And not to mention, protein powder isn’t something that you will want to be drinking on a regular basis throughout the day. It is usually just a one time thing.

So now we know what not to look for, but what do we want in a sports drink?

No specific ingredients, but a good mix of the following:

-Vitamins
-Minerals
-Protein
-Electrolytes
-Carbohydrates (depending on the circumstance)

PowerBar Recovery Label
PowerBar Recovery

This PowerBar is known to simply taste terrible. It contains 90 calories, three grams or protein, and 10g of sugar in a scoop. It supports muscle recovery and repair, rapid re-hydration, and speeds glycogen restoration. I made my mind up when I found out that it tastes bad.

Muscle Milk
Muscle Milk

Muscle Milk widely known throughout the U.S. and weightlifting community. In fact, it is in most gas stations and convenience stores. However, it contains soy lecithin, maltodextrin, milk protien, and too many artificial flavors and oils.




After searching for hours and hours, I finally found some drinks that tasted at least alright, and were mostly healthy…

Pur Pak - Active Lifestyle Supplement
Pur Pak – Active Lifestyle Supplement

 

Emergen-C Vitamin C Dietary Supplement (click to buy)

 

And the Winner is (which I do drink on a regular basis)…

 

Power Paks – Electrolyte Stamina (click to buy)

I will say that I am still looking for something that I get excited to see no matter the time of day or scenario. The previous are mostly healthy for you, but still don’t have that taste or Powerade, soda, or Gatorade. Who knows, maybe I’ll start producing my own line of drinks some day.

 

10 Best Snack Ideas Before and After Working Out – Or Anytime!

I’m always hungry. I’ll eat a pizza, then two hours later I’ll be craving some more. Or worse, I’ll be craving some cookies or brownies that my grandma just dropped off. The worst is when you work out early in the morning, so the whole rest of the day you are scrounging the cupboards and pantry for anything that will satisfy your craving.

Let’s get to that list. I won’t say that all of these are super healthy, but for the most part they shouldn’t be too bad for you.

1) Granola Bars

I know, these are pretty obvious, but I just really wanted to share some of my favorites. And yes, obviously I like peanut butter so I apologize if you have a peanut allergy)
-Quaker Chewy Peanut Butter Dipps

-Nature Valley Protein Chewy Bars – Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate

-Clif Crunch – Granola Bar – Chocolate Peanut Butter

 

2) Boiled eggs 

I like to eat eggs in the morning, but eating them throughout the day is a big hunger quencher (is that a saying?) and is healthy for you as well.

 

3) Raisins

Not everyone likes raisins, but if you do, they are clean to eat and easy to carry around.

 

4) Protein (Peanut Butter) Cookies

These might be my favorite option for a snack if I had to choose one. It obviously tastes better if you include sugar and such, but they are still good with something like chocolate or peanut butter in them.

 

5) Protein Brownies (I know, it’s similar, but not the same)

Just look at that picture. Oh my. I’m hungry now. I’ll be back in a minute.

 

6) Trail Mix

Oh yes, reminds me of boy scouts. Actually, now that I think of it, boy scouts was not a good time for me, so let’s not talk about that. But hey, eating Trail Mix is a great time for me!

 

7) Fruit
Fruit is always a good option. I like apples and peanut butter. You can also do bananas and peanut butter. Pears are good as well. Kiwi is a less popular one, but I always enjoy a good kiwi.

Run Faster – Workouts and Tips That WILL Help You Be the Fastest You Can Be

Running is useful in almost any sport. Running fast is even more important in any sport.  I’ve heard a lot of people talk about speed as a purely genetic thing. While genetics do play a role in speed, it is not everything. I believe that genetics give us a base of our speed, then we can make the most to add to that.

I am going to show you how to add to your current speed. Whether you need to lose weight, tone up, or attain better form, I am here to help. I recently wrote an article on the controversy of whether or not bigger legs make you run slower. To sum that up, yes, bigger legs can make you run slower, but it depends on how you counteract that extra weight you are adding. I realize I could have left a lot of readers asking, “Well how exactly do I do this?”, and that is the reason for this article.

I am basically going to just list off a bunch of cool stretches, workouts, exercises. I obviously don’t know what you are working for, so you pick and choose from the workouts. I thought about making a running workout routine, but it would be very difficult, not knowing your schedule, current running ability, and how far you want to go. I will warn you, because I am telling you to pick and choose, don’t cut yourself short. If you think that doing all of these will help you, then do all of them. Give yourself your best.

 

Stretching: This is key no matter what workout or exercise you are doing. As I go about my days, I always hear people reminding and talking to each other about stretching before lifting weights or playing a pick up game of football. While I would agree with stretching before activities, I mostly only like dynamic stretching before activities. Static stretching (holding for 30+ seconds) should almost always only be done after workouts or during another time. The key to static stretching is making sure your muscles are warm before performing the stretches. Not doing so will probably only harm you.

If you want to know more about dynamic vs. static stretching, check out Static vs. Dynamic Stretching.

Dynamic Warm-up (before workouts/running): 

-Warm up jog: Make sure not to just start running right away. If you are coming from sitting in school or a desk all day and then start running full speed, you are in for some trouble.

-Hip circles: Place your hands on your hips, standing up straight. Rotate one of your hips in a clockwise pattern. After 10 rotations, switch to the other leg. Now go in a counterclockwise rotation for the same time.

-Walking lunges: Just how they sound. Take a step forward and drop the back leg’s knee to the ground. Lift up that back leg and step forward, dropping the other leg’s knee to the ground.

-Monster Walk (Frankensteins): Stand up straight and don’t bend your back during this dynamic stretch. Keeping your leg straight, kick it up in the air. As you kick up in the air, reach out to touch it with the opposite hand. Bring that leg down and kick the other one up, keeping it straight, and touch it with the opposite arm. Repeat.

-Leg Swings: Find a wall and place both hands out on it. Place one foot back. Swing the other leg side to side (in the direction of each hip).

-Butt Kickers: Jog slowly kicking your feet up to your butt.

-High Knees: Jog slowly kicking your knees up to the sky.

 

Parachute Running:

AGPtek® 56 inch Speed Training Resistance Parachute Running Chute Power (Large)

Since the first time I saw this, I’ve thought it was the coolest thing ever. The best feeling is using these parachutes to train, running as fast as you can. After using the running parachutes, you take them off and try running without them. You feel like a cheetah. The added resistance is great for getting faster. It makes you exert that extra energy you normally wouldn’t. You grow muscle needed to run fast, as well as strengthening your stabilizers.

 

Strengthen up those glutes: The most underrated muscle for ALL sports (and I mean all) in general is the buttocks. I don’t say that to be funny or just to say something out there to gain attention. I really mean it. Think about where all that power comes from in a baseball players swing. How about when a football player jolts at the quarterback to tackle him. And yes, running too. We need it to get that explosive start. It also helps so that not all of the stress is on the other muscle of our bodies because our glutes can’t handle it in long distance runs. Alright, enough talking here’s some workouts:

Barbell glute bridge: Lay on your back, knees bent up, feet flat on the ground. Place a barbell with whatever weights you feel across your body (right above hip area). Push your butt up towards the sky (or ceiling since you’re probably in a gym), go as far as you can and hold at the top for a second. You can do these for power and for endurance.

Single leg glute-bridge: This is for those of you who don’t have access to a gym or barbell. It’s the same thing as the barbell glute bridge, but only use only leg to push up.

Downward facing balance: You are going to need a balance ball for this one. Lay on your groin region on the balance ball with your hands on the ground. Slowly lift your feet towards the sky and hold for 5-10 seconds. Slowly bring your feet back to the ground and repeat.

Kneeling jump squat: You can use a barbell for this one or just bodyweight. Begin kneeling on the ground with your butt up. Bring your butt down to your feet and burst up, generating enough power to get on your feet. Finish the squat upwards.

Hip extensions: Use a resistance band for this one. Place it around your ankle and also under a door or similar. Push out to the side slowly and back in.

 

Fix your running form: I am not going to get into whether or not heel tapping is good or not, because really it doesn’t matter all that much. Too much can be a bad thing, and too little can be as well. The main strategy I will push is that each step you should land underneath your body. Don’t land your foot too far forward or you are slowing yourself down, literally.

While I don’t want to be completely useless and the bearer of bad news here, I will tell you a little secret: there is no secret formula that everyone can use to run faster. I have given you some things to experiment with. It all depends on your flexibility, strength, and the number of steps your taking…and about 50 other factors. Experiment with taking quicker strides. Try keeping your feet under your body as you hit the ground. Try keeping your shoulders and head up. And contrary to popular belief, try hunching over a little more (probably more for power strides or sprinters).

I really don’t like it when somebody tells someone they could run faster if they just do one of these simple magic tricks. It may be because I am biased. I have “terrible” running form. I am hunched forward, I squeeze my hands, my elbows are bent more than 90 degrees, and there is probably more you could judge my form on. Yet I am still fast. I have not done a ton of experimenting with my running form, but when I do I always end up going straight back to the way I know because that’s the way I am fastest.

 

Strengthen up your core: Your core, along with your glutes, is so important to being the fastest you. We use an ab and core workout that is good for really anything. It doesn’t just focus on the abs, but the core as a whole. Try the Ab and Core Workout – Great for Building a Strong Core and Six Pack.

Resistance Training: Similar to the parachute, resistance training will help you drastically improve your running speed. You are exerting so much energy doing resistance training exercises. When you finally take off the resistance trainer, you feel amazingly light. It gets so much easier every time do it. These are best done with a partner.
SKLZ Recoil 360 Degree Resistance Trainer with Free SKLZ Carry Bag

 

Sprint Drills After Leg Day: This video explains it pretty well:

 

Need help deciding which running shoes to buy? Here’s a good start:

Nike Men’s Free 5.0+ Running Shoe

Mizuno Men’s Wave Evo Ferus Running Shoe,Yellow,11.5 D US

Topo Athletic Fli-Lyte Road Running Shoe – Men’s Black/Mango 12

Altra Men’s One 2.5 Running Shoe

List of the Best Speakers to Put in Your Gym – Build Your Own Gym

Who doesn’t want their own gym? If you are building one for yourself or for a business, we can help make the shopping process easier. We have compiled a list of the top gym speaker choices to put in your gym! Some want large speaker systems with multiple speakers to fill large weight rooms, others want small portable gym speakers just large enough to fill a home gym. We gave you a wide selection here to choose from. We also have other “build your own gym” articles here if you are interested:

List of the Best Gym Equipment for Your Own Gym (includes dumbbells, squat racks, barbells, pull-up bars, TVs, and much more!)

 

AudioFlow BigSound Ultra Loud 15 Watts

Product Description: This Ultra Loud BigSound is equipped with two 7.5 Watt Active Drivers as well as a Deep Bass Passive Subwoofer. The 3000mAh rechargeable battery allows 8+ hours of non-stop music playing. Make hands free calls with the built in microphone. Connect to this speaker system with 4.0 connectivity, allowing control from your Bluetooth enabled devices. The speaker allows you to be 30 feet away from the device and still be able to connect.

Pros:
-Small and easy to carry around
-Loud speaker for the size
-Clear sound

Cons:
-Not big enough to create studio like sound


 

Bose 802 Speaker Public Address PA System for Gymnasiums, Arenas and Stadiums

Product Description: Yeah, if you are thinking about this one, you are not messing around. This is a monster step up from the last speaker. This is the real deal. It comes with (4) Bose Panaray 802 Series IV Loudspeakers, (2) Bose MB4 Modular Bass Loudspeakers, (1) Bose ControlSpace SP-24 Sound Processor, (1) Crown XLS2502 Power Amplifier, (2) Bose SB-8 Flying Brackets and (3) Pure Resonance Audio UC1S Ultra-Clear Dynamic Vocal Microphones. Wow. The system itself is very simple and easy to use, designed to eliminate the confusion of selecting individual components. All setups are simplified, and everything works together in harmony.

Pros:
-Get that great Bose sound
-Simple design
-Easy to use for how complicated most speaker systems can be

Cons:
-Expensive
-Space needed to place all speakers and systems (although, the speakers themselves are not very big)


 

LyxPro Spa-8 – 8″ Compact Portable PA System

Product Description: And now the hot seller. This powerful 100W Active PA System comes in at 14 pounds. It has an 8″ Woofer, power split: 70-Watt LF and 30-Watt HF. The MP3 section is with Bluetooth, also including an SD card slot and USB input with Onboard Intuitive Music Controls and EQ. Top features include: flexible inputs, reliable output, enough power for smart music controls and quality audio reproduction. The SPA-8 is a powered PA system, which leaves no mixers or heavy pieces of equipment lying around, including power amps.

Pros:
-All-in-one PA system
-Quick set-up

Cons:
-Sound quality falls under other bigger systems
-Bass system lacks


Spiderman Workout Program


 

PYLE Street Blaster PBMSPG100 Rugged and Portable Bluetooth Wireless BoomBox

Product Description: This high output speaker system works with any Bluetooth device (iPhone, Android, Smartphone, iPad, Tablet, MP3 player, PC, etc.). It comes with a built-in digital amp and rechargeable battery. It was designed with portability in mind, weighing in at 21 pounds. Battery life can last up to four hours. Control your bass, treble, echo, volume microphone and guitar levels.

Pros:
-Great volume
-Good Bluetooth range
-Lots of inputs
-Very portable

Cons:
-Sound comes out sides, not front
-Battery life of 4 hours
-Bass not super big


 

Orb Audio Mini 5.1 Plus – Metallic Black Gloss

Product Description: The Orb Audio Mini 5.1 Home Theater Speaker System will work great for a gym. It includes six award winning Orb Audio Mod1X Speakers, one Orb Audio subMINI powered subwoofer, and all wiring required to connect the speakers and subwoofer to your speaker system. As it states in its description, it doubles as an audiophile grade stereo system for music listening. It has a high-end surround speaker system, and has the ability to upgrade in the future.

Pros:
-Surround sound included
-Good quality for the price
-Finish on speakers

Cons:
-Additional sound system needed to plug-in system


 

Acoustic Audio AA5170 Home Theatre 5.1 Bluetooth Speaker System 700W with Powered Sub


Product Description: This is probably the best bang for your buck here. It has a 700 Watt power rating. It comes with Bluetooth connectivity, SD card, flash drive MP3 player and FM tuner. There are five discrete independent channel input/output for true surround sound. A nice touch added to it with plug and play connections. The magnetically shielded speakers have computerized enclosure design.

Pros:
-Excellent value for the price
-Decent bass system
-Clear sound, good volume

Cons:
-Short cables
-Purely run by remote control

10 Ways to Get Motivated to Go to the Gym and Workout

The hardest part about working out for me is actually getting to the gym. It is very difficult sometimes to convince myself to get motivation to get there. Once I have started it is not as hard to keep going. I have compiled a list to help you (and myself) to get pumped up and motivated to go to the gym and workout.

These are great for old, young, boy, and girls. Here’s the list:

 

1) If you are new and don’t have a workout routine, it is pretty difficult to go and just try things. You don’t want to look like the newbie in the gym and look like you have no idea what you are doing. If this is you, there is a ton of workouts on the internet that can help you find what you are looking for. If you don’t want to go far to find one, you can also try out some of our most famous workouts:
15 Minute Daily Workout Routine – High Intensity Full Body
Ab and Core Workout – Great for Building a Strong Core and Six Pack
Four Day Gym Plan – Full Body Workout Plan
Two Day Workout Plan – Actually Get Ripped Only Working Out Twice a Week
Resistance Band Workout – List of Full Body Workouts
Four Day Home Workout – No Weights! – Build Muscle at Home

 

2) Get in a habit. As I read more and more about motivation, whether it be for doing homework, chores, or working out, the more I learn about habits. Forming habits is a mysterious art form. The cool thing habits is that they have never and will never go out of style. No matter how much technology we create or how much we advance, the habits we make will still be as crucial as they have ever been. So how long does it take to develop a new habit and how do you do so? It has been “known” for many years that 21 days is the length of time it takes to get rid of and develop a new habit. New science, however, has been coming up with new conclusions.

Long story short, a study was written about by Bustle discussing the theory of the 21 days, and they say they have debunked it. After reading about the study, I agree with the claims they have made. They studied 96 people over 12 weeks and found that the average time it took for the participant to reach automaticity in their new habit was 66 days. 66. Not 21. They did note that each participant was different and that 66 was simply the mean of the study. I think we can safely say 21 days is a little short. Read the full story here: How Long Does It Take to Develop a New Habit? 66 Days, Says Science (Or, Debunking the 21 Day Myth).

So how do you form habits? While each person is different and has gone through different experiences in life, I can’t tell you specifically how to do it, but here’s a list of actions you can take:

-Make goals (This book explains how to do this very well: Success Is Not an Accident: Change Your Choices; Change Your Life)
-Get rid of excuses
-Read this book: HABIT FORMING
-Eliminate Negativity (How to Achieve Success and Happiness: Increase your mind power, overcome negativity, achieve your goals, and live your dreams in record time (SUCCESS 101))
-Avoid useless and energy draining activities and focus on your habitual activities
-No more “Screw it” moments. Stay committed

 

3) Eat (AND DRINK) healthier. As I stated in my post Habits That are Probably Hurting Your Workout Routine, drinking water and maintaining your nutrients throughout the day is very important. Not just before, during, and after we workout, but all day long. If you are at the office, be sure to always have a water bottle handy. Take drinks every five minutes or so. You may find yourself in the bathroom more often, but maintaining liquids will keep your body healthy and feeling good.

 

4) Switch up your workout routine. Doing the same thing over and over can get very boring. If you are trying to stay in shape just to stay in shape, this will be very easy to switch up your workout routine because there is so much information out there for you to use. If you need some ideas on how to do so, these might get your brain moving in the right direction:
-Try resistance bands (Resistance Band Workout – List of Full Body Workouts)
-Do different variations of your workouts
-Use kettlebells
-Join a local gym program (high intensity, course training)
-Workout outside once or twice a week (unless it’s winter in Minnesota, like me…)

 

5) Listen to music. Ok, I know this sounds extremely obvious, but even the slightest change can make a huge difference. Not only listening to or switching up your playlist, but also other tweaks such as the clothes you wear. Or maybe bring a different pair of shoes to the gym. Just switch it up a bit so it is not the same old thing everyday.

 

6) Think positively. This may sound alien to some of you. In fact, I’m sure it is alien to a lot of you based on a lot of your guys’ words and actions. There have been many studies, books, and straight up speculations about positivity. The end result has always been the same: positive. Being negative to yourself has never been found to help anyone. Giving yourself positive criticism and motivation can go a long way, especially when you are slumping in the working out department.

 

7) Bring a friend. Who doesn’t like a good friend to bring along to workout with? Ok, it’s not always the best when they slow you down or are negative, but what if they pushed you and were positive. Try pushing them and being positive, it will rub off after a while, trust me.

Go into it telling them to push you. They’ll probably ask you to do the same. Results can be incredible with a team of two or more working out together. Not everyone likes working out with others, but some thrive off of the energy that others bring to them.

 

8) Think about the end result. Remember why you are working out. Maybe it is because you want to break the state scoring record in basketball. Or maybe you are doing it for your girl/boyfriend or spouse. Perhaps you just need to relieve some stress. Oh, no, I know! You want to be able to go to the beach and and barely be able to take your shirt off because it’s so tight. Whatever your reason, remember the end result you want to have.

 

9) Make goals. This was explained a little bit earlier in the article. I just want to emphasize this. Make goals that are measurable, detailed, and difficult enough but still achievable. Sit down right now and make these goals. Don’t procrastinate. Review these goals daily, right when you wake up in the morning or before you go workout.

 

10) Don’t sleep in. I don’t know your work schedule. I don’t know if you are married and have kids or not. I don’t know if you don’t have a lot of time on your hands. Who knows, maybe you keep telling yourself you don’t have time and you are just looking for an excuse to not workout. I won’t give you that excuse. I realize some people are up late working, doing homework, and/or putting the kids to bed. Either way, waking up early gives you more time during the day to achieve success. You may not be an early riser, but neither was I until I forced myself to get up in the morning.

I searched and searched for something on the internet telling me how to wake up earlier so I could get stuff done. I didn’t find anything that helped. One day I said, “You are getting up now, and you are going to the gym…NOW. I felt a lot more relieved of any stress I had, and it cleared up time later in the day that I could use for other things like friends, family, and working on projects. You should really try it sometime, it does wonders.

 

Don’t overthink it. Obviously there’s a reason why you are reading this. Maybe you are in a workout slump and just can’t find the right formula to make it in to the gym. Here’s the truth: sometimes there really is no formula. There’s no secret pill you can take. There’s no friend that will make you go to the gym. Sometimes you just have to go because you know you should. You have to force yourself to. If none of these work for you, then you need to hear the hard truth: you don’t want to get in shape. I know it doesn’t always sound the nicest, but we all have our weaknesses, and sometimes you just have to push through them and not make excuses.

Body-Solid GSCL360 Leverage Squat Calf Machine Review

Everyone wants to squat better! At least I think. Here is a great way to do so. The Body-Solid GSCL360 Leverage Squat and Calf Machine is a fantastic way to build that muscle and tone up those legs, while still keeping that beautiful form of yours.




The Leverage Squat and Calf Machine is meant to be able to keep your back straight while squatting. It gets your mind off stabilizing the barbell on top of you, and it makes you focus primarily on just lifting with your legs.

Product Description: The machine comes with durafirm shoulder pads to help keep the shoulders stay comfortable throughout the movements. The foot plate is angled at 20 degrees for ideal squatting form.

This machine is great for strengthening and toning your glutes, thighs, calves, and lower back. Safety is ensured with this machine with the spring loaded safety lock. The great and most surprising fact about this machine is that it is durable and reliable enough for a big-time gym, but also it will fit in most houses. Squat more than 800 lbs with this bad boy, safely!

What people have to say:

“…absolutely no back pain. It helps put you in the exact perfect position.. Not only is this great for squat but also for calves and shrugs.. Extremely durable.”

“…it does have some shortcomings and nuisance issues that decrease its potential value. While I find the angled platform great for reducing knee stress, it’s a little too narrow in my opinion and I am taking the entire width up while wishing for the ability to take a slightly wider stance.”

“This is a very sturdy and easy to assemble.”

“The starting position sucks. I’m around average height at 6 feet and I have to crouch down to get into position. They should’ve made it so it has adjustable lock out heights.”

Our Final Take:
It is a great machine to build muscle galore in your legs, butt, calves, and lower back. It does not, however, work the stabilizer muscles used in normal squatting. The good thing is that it is easy on the knees and there is less chance of injuring yourself using it.

Buy it here, if you’d like:

Body Solid GSCL360 Leverage Squat Calf Machine