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Starting Strong, Issue #007 -, For Ab Exercises This Works Like Crazy!
June 01, 2010
Well, May is just ending and June is here. And there's new info at CST, which will help to kick your training up a notch!
With summer approaching I decided to focus this month's article on the best ab exercise equipment around. Check it out, there's some great advice, and most of the equipment is cheap, free, or easy to make at home.
One caveat though: If you are building a six pack for the summer, be sure to do it for yourself and not for the adoration of others. I love getting compliments (make no mistake!) but I know that if I start working out just to get compliments I'll be disingenuous - and pandering to other people's approval.
So, when you're weight lifting or doing ab work, even if you're getting more ripped as well as stronger, be sure you're doing it from a place of inner strength.
On a different note, there's an easy way to keep track of everything new at Complete-Strength-Training.com when I first add articles. Copy the link below and paste it into your Google Reader, NetNewsWire or your favorite feed reader....
If you use My Yahoo! or My MSN, head over to my home page and click on the button for your favorite Web-based feed reader.
Now go on, read the newsletter, and go lift something heavier than you've ever lifted before!
Table of Contents
2) Super Slow Weight Training - Slow, Serious, & Successful
3) Weight Training at Home
4) Top Submission: How to Increase Explosive Speed?
5) SELECT ARTICLE-So, What's The Best Ab Exercise Equipment Around?
This full abdominal workout plan for beginners highlights 6 exercises that you can use for a foundation abdominal workout, along with a free PDF to download of it.
Super slow weight training is great for an intense workout that's also safe. This article's about how to go slow and serious with your workouts. This is a great kind of weight training for beginners since it allows you to focus on correct form for the exercises. Also, you work with really heavy weights, leading to great strength gains.
What should you think abut when weight training at home? Buy that expensive home exercise equipment first, or get into a regular routine? If you want to begin doing weight training at home, check this page out. It has all the info you need to get started on the right foot and see if this is for you.
I play football and want to get faster. Other than plyometrics, what types of weight training will give me explosive speed?
5) So, What's The Best Ab Exercise Equipment Around?
Lately I've been working my abdominals really hard and trying out different kinds of equipment. Some have been great, and some of it has been pretty ineffective.
So, here's what I think are the best pieces of ab exercise equipment you'll find.
1) The Ground
Yes, your most basic tool - and free too! I always think the first thing to do when exercising is not to spend money, but to use what you have in creative ways.
Do crunches, supermans, ab bicycles; tons of exercises! Don't overlook the basics in favor of slick promises and 'silver bullets'. Also, you always have the ground so you can't complain that you don't have all the right 'equipment' for a workout.
2) Ab Roller
A basic piece of equipment, this is just a wheel with hand-holds on either side. But extremely useful, as well as easy to make if you don't want to shell out for a commercial one.
Get on your toes and, with just your toes and the roller on the floor (which you're holding) roll out till your are in a plank position, using your abs to stabilize the movement. Then, contract your abs to bring the roller right back to your toes.
This is murderous on abs. Seriously.
Start on your knees if your abs aren't up to the full version.
3) Bar to Hang On
Knee ups, leg ups, and crunches while hanging from a bar are all great. Or any other thing you can grab onto and hang from. Again, this is something cheap and easy to find and use.
In most commercial gyms you can find exercise bars about 4 to 4.5 feet long. If you can't find one, a broom handle works just as well.
Simply place the bar on your shoulders and twist your shoulders from side to side using your abs, keeping your hips static. If that's too easy, find a heavier bar. If you want to go for endurance, try doing tons of repetitions of that exercise in a short period of time.
Simple. But not easy.
5) A Place to Tuck Your Feet
Seriously, people are selling ab pulverizers, bullet proof ab tools, and other gimmicks for holding down your toes while doing crunches. This allows you to focus on contracting your abs, and helps eliminate action from the hip flexors.
Fortunately, tucking your toes under the couch does this just as well. Or a door, the Encyclopedia Britannica, weight plates, a box, etc. You get the picture.
Find some place to tuck your feet and try doing your crunches, regular or alternating, there.
6) Cable Machine (Maybe?)
OK, a cable machine is good only for abdominal cable crunches. Kneel before the machine, hold the cables behind your neck and, using your abs, crunch towards the floor. A highly targeted and brutal exercise.
However, this is a pretty advanced exercise in my opinion. You certainly don't need a cable machine to start working your abs, and focusing on them like this can hurt them if you go too heavy too fast.
So, good but not essential. Try it if you have the opportunity.
One more thing: Massage your abs the day after your workout!! They will be sore, but there may also be muscle knots forming (trigger points, in more clinical terminology).
If you want to keep exercising on a regular basis be sure to address these. Otherwise you may have abdominal pain that lasts and causes spasms when you try to do abdominal workouts. Not good for your workouts, or for just being healthy in general
So, there's the best ab exercise equipment I've found, along with some advice for ab exercises. Try working you abs. Now. Yes, now!
Starting Strong brings you the latest additions to Complete-Strength-Training.Com & select articles about how to get STRONG.
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Train hard, do your best, & see you next month!
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