Inspiration from Centenarians

September 9, 2019

Deadlift Photos

August 28, 2019

 

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Every photo above is an example of the exercise referred to as the DEADLIFT (this week’s theme). It’s an exercise that nearly every adult on earth would benefit from because it directly works the muscles involved with posture. Obviously, from the photos, there are plenty of options, even more than I have here. For beginners, whatever object is being lifted can easily be placed a few inches off the ground to make it easier and safer to learn. To do the exercise, just bend down safely to pick up whatever object (the dead weight) and then safely stand back up with it tall and straight. Don’t have any equipment? You don’t need any. Just find a small duffel bag and fill with stuff…water bottles, dirt, bags of dog food or water softener salt pellets. I’ve even used a cinder block which costs around $3 and weighs approximately 35lbs. The main thing to remember is to keep your back straight the entire time. Tighten your stomach muscles to help with this. Use your hips, not just your legs to lift the weight. If the weight is too heavy to allow for this, use something lighter. Stand up tall at the top. Squeeze your butt without leaning backwards. Aim for 10-15 reps. Once comfortable, maybe try going heavier so that 5-10 reps is heavier but still doable. Do this once a week would be my recommendation. Pick which day right now. Commit to it. *The man in the middle photo is Lamar Gant, arguably the strongest pound for pound dead-lifter of all time. He lifted 688lbs in the deadlift at a height of 5’2” and weighing 132lbs. Now that is impressive. He also had scoliosis. #bssbbooks #austinpersonaltraining #austinpersonaltrainer #healthandfitness #heathsndwellness #deadlift #strongwomen #blueskystrongbox

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Counteract Sitting with the Deadlift

August 28, 2019

 

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Let’s look a little deeper at the negative effects of too much sitting. One area that’s not mentioned enough is the effect it has on our Posture, specifically the muscles involved with keeping our posture upright versus hunched over. Understand, sitting is not inherently bad for us. It becomes a problem when done too often and with no effort made to correct any negative effects. It is true that sitting does tend to make some muscles tighter. It would be wise to Google which ones and then do regular stretching and self/massage work for those areas before they become serious problems. But what about exercise? Is there an exercise that can help with the many postural issues caused by too much sitting? Yes, it’s called the DEADLIFT. In the early 19oo’s it was still called the Healthlift. They even do this exercise at the space station. Is it a good exercise for everyone? Maybe not. For various reasons, not all exercises are a good fit for everyone. There are some simple tests that can help identify any potential problems, especially in the hands of qualified professional. Just know that most anyone can learn to do this exercise safely. In fact, there are quite a few different versions of the Deadlift and a variety of equipment can be used. Do some research. Experiment. And yes, always be careful. The point today was to get you to understand that while many of us may have to sit way more than is healthy, there are things we can and should do to keep from ending up permanently hunched over. Why not start today?! #bssbbooks #posture #posturecorrector #posturecorrection #heathsndwellness #healthandfitness #austinpersonaltrainer #austinpersonaltraining #blueskystrongbox

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Thoughts on Jumprope

August 20, 2019

 

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When was the last time you tried to JUMPROPE? It’s probably been a while right? Skipping rope is a legitimate skill that requires practice. It’s not easy in the beginning and does take time but worth the effort. I consider Jumping Rope to be what I call a “fountain of youth” exercise. This would be anything that preserves or builds back movement abilities that we tend to lose quickly with inactivity and aging. The ability to run, hop and jump might seem trivial but it’s the difference between being a “spring chicken” or “old beef jerky”. Jumping Rope is an excellent way to put some “pep back in your step”. It’s also an excellent way to burn some extra calories and improve your conditioning, aka “cardio”. 5-10 minutes is typically all that most can handle in the beginning. It’s ok. Most folks won’t be able to last but about 20 jumps before resting. Some less. You may hit your feet every time the first few tries. That’s ok. Don’t quit. Any effort is good effort. Another thing I really like is that it keeps us on our toes, literally. Crashing down on the heals of the feet is not typically desirable. People often do this while jogging on concrete. This combined with poor running form literally destroys most people’s knees, feet and ankles. Jumprope is a great way to teach the body to absorb force using the calves, the body’s naturally shock absorbers. #bssbbooks #blueskystrongbox #jumprope #healthandfitness

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A sample of my own Workouts…

February 15, 2019

 

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I’ve had a few people ask about my own personal workouts lately. So today I filmed exactly what I did WHILE I was in the middle of it. I’m only showing this to illustrate an example of an effective, yet simple workout for an intermediate/advanced trainee. This entire workout took 30minutes and was completed during an hour break I had this morning, which gave me enough time to exercise+shower+eat. It’s nothing too fancy. I am only showing ONE rep examples of each exercise. Yes, I did more reps and sets. Yes, I did rest between most sets. I normally do only 2-3 sets for any exercise. I typically do 5-10 reps on most of my exercises, which is exactly what I did today. Some days I do more, some days I do less. I rest between sets long enough to feel like I’m in control before starting the next set or exercise (and not the other way around). Being too out of breath or to hurried begs for mistakes and injuries. Ain’t nobody got time for that. Today I supersetted Kettlebell Swings with Goblet Squats and Single Leg Deadlifts + Pull-ups w 1-arm holds and Upside Down Rows. On the next (last) round, I supersetted Dips + Handstand 1-arm Stability Holds. Yes, I even had some Cajun music 🎶 on for company. Do things YOU enjoy and understand. Have a reason for everything you do or don’t do. Don’t just do stuff because it’s popular or someone else is doing it. Nothing you to needs to be complicated. In fact, purposely keep things simple. Don’t do things you absolutely hate or dread either. Because how long do you think you’ll keep that up?! With that said, don’t skip the things you NEED to do to be better. Most importantly, whatever you do, just make sure it’s repeatable. #bssbbooks #blueskystrongbox #carltonsmixtapegumbo #carltonmusicatx

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How Well Can You Crawl?

August 3, 2018

 

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I appreciate simple things. I also appreciate that simple and easy are not the same thing. They say you can tell a lot about someone by the shoes they wear and how they walk. I can do the same watching someone crawl. A very simple thing to try (but may prove to be more difficult for some) is to walk/crawl down to the ground and come back up to standing using mostly your upper body and whatever flexibility you currently have. Try to do several in a row if you want. (After years working as a fitness professional, I can honestly say that, as easy as this may be for regular exercisers, it’s often quite difficult for those that are sedentary.) Did it make you breathe heavy? Was it challenging to move the weight of your body around? Did you feel tight in a few areas? Perfect. This would be a great place for you to start exploring movement with your body. Yes, it also burns calories too. Just make sure nothing hurts when you do it. It is ok if it doesn’t look perfect. The point is to begin getting more comfortable being uncomfortable. I recommend practicing this daily. You don’t need to get all sweaty while doing it. Not yet anyway. For now, don’t even worry about counting any reps if you don’t want to. I would rather you put all of your energy toward simply moving better. You’ll know you’ve made progress when it feels easier to do AND begins to look more and more graceful over time. You can always upgrade to BEAST MODE later on if or when things drastically improve. But for now, master the fundamentals. They are never to be overlooked. #bssbbooks #blueskystrongbox

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“What exercise would you recommend if I only have time to do ONE exercise?” (Video below from my Instagram page)

March 22, 2018

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TURN UP THE VOLUME. Today is an important (free) video I did for everyone that asks, “What’s one good exercise you recommend for busy people?” It’s a great question and one that I do get often. So if you were to just do one (strength) exercise, I would recommend choosing one from this list. I tried to choose exercises that I do myself. I also tried to choose exercises that had variety and could be done in almost any situation with a variety of equipment or no equipment. One single exercise practiced correctly, intensely enough & often enough can give a tremendous bang for the buck. If your main goal is to lose body fat, focus 99% of your effort on nutrition and 7-9 hours of sleep every single night. For health, most folks don’t need to do a bunch of exercises to strengthen the body. But we all do NEED to do something. Strength is super important for everything that relates to health, fitness and enjoying a long higher quality of life. Strength doesn’t have to mean working out all the time or building big muscles, if that’s not your cup of tea. Strength exercises come in many varieties. Most people just do nothing their entire adult lives which catches up to most people later when they are too weak to do basic everyday tasks. Do know that a “strength” exercise is the same thing as a “resistance” exercise or even a “weight-bearing” exercise. Don’t ever be confused. Keep things simple. Remember, your form (how you do the exercise) is very important. Doing it regularly is also very important. Write me with ANY questions you may have… so here’s the list: 1) The Swing 2) Deadlift+Carry 3) Squat to Row 4) Goblet Squat 5) Turkish Getup 6) Crawling 7) L-sit. With all that said, the single best “general” exercise in the world is WALKING. Seriously. People often think I’m joking but I’m not. Personally, I prefer and highly recommend walking uphill whenever possible. Walking daily is essential. #blueskystrongbox

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