Body Weight Fitness

Every one can benefit from some body weight training.Like the old saying goes, time is money.  This is so true, especially in today’s world.  If you have a family, work and spending time with them takes up the day.  This can prevent you from getting to the gym and working out.  For me, when school starts, I have class, work, and homework.  Then, I finally get to hit the gym at maybe 8 or 9 at night.  It’s a long day.  However, you don’t always have to go to the gym to train.  Body weight exercises like push ups, pull ups and squats can help significantly, when going to the gym isn’t an option. 

For this type of training, it is important to know your limits.  If you can only to 10 push ups, only do 10 push ups, but remember to keep pushing yourself every time.  You do not have to rep out (go to failure) each time you go through this type workout.  You also have to remember that it is not like bench pressing or curling; you are using multiple joints, which is perfect for motocross applications.  I would recommend doing 2 sets, of about 4 or 5 variations of push ups and pull ups.  For legs, you can do the same and incorporate calf exercises with your squats and lunges. 

Here are some push up variations:

Standard – Hands about shoulder width apart, back straight and flex the abs.  Come down until your chest is a few inches off the ground. 

Military – Hands are a little bit closer than shoulder width; when you come down your hands should be next to your chest.  Keep your elbows in and close to your sides.    

Wide Grip – I say wide grip because when you are benching, your hands are wider than shoulder width.  So, hands are wider than shoulder width and perform each one like a standard push up.

Diamonds – This is a bit tougher, but a good one.  Bring your hands together and make a diamond with your pointer fingers and thumbs.  When you come down, your diamond should hit your chest.  It is hard, but it pays off.

Decline – Get a chair and set your feet on the chair.  Then perform a regular push up. 

Some pull up variations include:

Standard pull up – With your palms facing you, keep your hands shorter than shoulder width apart.

Wide Grip – Wider than shoulder width and palms facing away from you. 

Chin ups – Harder than pull ups.  Same as standard pull ups but with your palms facing away from you. 

Corn on the cobs – Sounds funny but a great workout.  Chin up position with hands a little wider than shoulders.  Pull up, and then shift your body from your right hand then, to your left.  Then return to the middle and repeat. 

For legs, have a look at my other article on them.  Instead of having a bar, you can use dumbbells for more resistance.  Also, when you are doing squats, as you come up, try to do some calf raises for extra burn.  Another really good exercise for legs is wall squats.  Find a wall and put your back to it.  Slide down until your thighs are parallel with the floor.  Hold for about 30 seconds and rest for about a minute and do it again.  You can also kick a leg out straight for some added burn.

If you hit your muscles hard, you will feel this the following day.  Just keep it within your limits, but don’t just go through the motions.  Try to outdo yourself every time.  Going to the gym all the time can get stale and boring, so staying at home can save some time and gas.  Do a few sets of each muscle group; moving from push ups to pull ups to legs will give your muscles a rest, but your heart rate will be elevated the whole time, giving you a real at home workout.

Posted on Aug 04 2009, under Training | No Comments »

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