My 5 Favorite Glute Exercises Ever

Today I want to give you my favorite exercises for the butt:)

1.  Hill Sprints

For the beginner it should be hill walks:)  

The more advanced person can do faster hill sprints after a good dynamic warm up and some slower sprints.

When it comes to hill sprints a word of cation is in order.  

Not very many are needed to increase speed and power.  

I like hills that take 10-30 seconds to conquer and I like to do between 3-6 work sets.  

My belief is when speed decreases by 20% or more it is time to stop for the day.

There is a hill by my house and it is a beast:)  Watch below

2.  Prowler or sled pushing

I love this is because most people can do it safely.

It the weight can be adjusted to use for maximal strength or for speed work.  

This is great for athletes to improve their conditioning as well.

3.  The squat or the deadlift.

Yes they are different exercises and different ways of doing them.  

I personally love the trap bar deadlift and use it on a regular basis.

 Before someone starts loading up the bar they should be able to do a proper bodyweight squat and bodyweight deadlift.

4.  Jumping, bounding, and other bodyweight exercise.

Most people do repetitive amounts of plyometric exercise.

Landings need to be great to protect the body from injury even with moderate plyometric activity.

When I think of plyometrics it should be to increase the strength that is already there.  

I like to make sure the person has proper technique and is prepared for these type of high intensity things.

5.  Lunges

There are so many lunge variations out there.

Side Lunge

Back Lunge

Forward Lunge

Isometric Lunge

Lunge Jump

and so on the list goes.

Comment below your favorite leg exercise or which do you like the best from the list above!

 

Bring Out Your Inner Athlete!

When it comes to sports I have learned so much.

I have learned

1.  Team Work

2.  Goal Setting and Hard Work

3.  Planning

4.  Fitness and Health

5.  Dedication

6.  Attitude

7.  Passion

8.  Purpose

9.  Persistence

10.  How to handle failure

These are just some of these things that I have learned from my beginnings of shooting hoops in rural Minnesota even when it was below zero degrees.

What does this have to do with you?

Well if you are reading this you are an athlete!

Yes anyone that has a body is an athlete.

Weather a beginner or advanced you can learn from the athlete.

 

Here are three ways to bring out your inner athlete.

1.  Training is about results and reaching a goal.

The rarely focus on getting to a certain weight the focus on performance.

They set a goal for sprint speed, vertical jump or any other goal based around their sport.

They do the needed thing to reach the goal including training, nutrition, sleep, and recovery.

The same should be true for anyone that is training.

Constantly set goals and work towards them.

2.  Mentally they have to be strong.

When it comes to results with fitness many times the person holding us back is ourselves.

Playing sports taught me to keep getting better.

It meant being the best I could be no matter what.

This is true for anyone that is training at all.

Continual regular progression in intensity is a key to results.

It is not going to be easy however it is going to be worth it.

3.  They realize that for them to do well the team has to do well.

Unfortunately not everyone has this same philosophy.

Some people believe to do better someone has to do worse or they have to beat somebody else.

The truth is that teams function best when each individual does the best for the team (for a mission).

They work for a greater good.

Yes those are the teams that do well.

In conclusion, when it comes to fitness training and life in general take the good from athletes.

Be the best you can be, train hard, train smart, and help others!

Comment below what have you have learned from athletes or from your on sports experience?

 

 

A Secret Fitness Weapon

So what is this secret fitness weapon?

Power!

Power can have several different meanings and uses.

But for this article lets discuss power in terms of sports and fitness.

“Power is defined as the amount of work performed per unit of time. Power is an element of skill-related fitness that is needed to excel in athletic performance. Increased strength does not always translate into increased power.” Read more: http://www.livestrong.com/article/115549-define-strength-power-muscular-endurance/#ixzz2HRc7hBZL

Why do I say power is the secret weapon?

Because power is super important for the athlete and for fitness alike.

Power is the combination of strength and speed!

So if we increase strength, power will increase as long as speed does not decrease.

We can increase speed, and this will also increase power as long as strength does not decrease.

This is why by simply increasing strength and/or speed in the same amount of time is a great way to increase overall fitness level.

“Developing power does not necessarily have to involve Olympic lifts or bounding up and down an athletics track, but can have dramatic results in beginners and advanced trainees alike looking for fat loss, when programmed correctly.”  http://training.fitness.com/articles-research/importance-power-training-any-goal-42800.html

No matter your goal power should be accounted for.  

Power is needed to jump higher, sprint faster, move a weight faster,  or move a band faster.

In the end any program should increase a persons power!

Comment below your thoughts about this secret weapon.

 

Three Mistakes Many People Make When Training

Throughout the years I have seen some crazy things in the gym.

Some workout related and others not!

When it comes to observing workouts and people here are some of the biggest mistakes I have seen.

1.  Pushing Too Hard or Not Pushing Hard Enough

Intensity is something that is widely misunderstood.

I have seen people loading up bars up to 250lbs for squat but could not do a proper body weight squat.

I have seen loads of crunches, improper push ups, and countless time on the treadmill.

I was told you can never do enough cardio.

Same exercises with the same intensity every workouts.

When it comes to intensity slow and steady wins the raise, however a person still needs to be challenged appropriately to see results.

Here is an example of what not to do in my opintion

Here is an example of something that might not get results either!:)

2.  Focusing on losing weight versus metabolism

Losing weight is easy it can be achieved through starvation, eating restriction, excessive aerobic exercise, fad dieting, HCG shots, surgeries and so on.

Many people want to lose weight and that is great however what they really are saying (most of the time) is they want to be more lean.

I know several people that are thin but not fit and absolutely not healthy.  So What?

Well any fitness program should be focused on improvement and progression.

Basically workouts should be centered around individual goals and then measured for constant improvements in a safe manner.

3.   Thinking that it is the workouts alone that changes appearance

Most people realize that an increase in lean muscle tissue will improve metabolism.

But then do not do the needed things to increase lean muscle tissue especially in regards to lifestyle things.

Here are a few ways to help the workouts be better and increase metabolism.

  • Stress reduction and management
  • Sleep
  • Supportive nutrition and supplementation
  • Other recovery techniques that make training sessions more effective

So what can be done immediately

1.  Figure out your goals and a plan

2.  Find some accountability for your goals including a program that is focused on metabolism

3.  Stay away from quick fixes

4.  Focus on lean muscle tissue

5.  Improve performance slow and steadily

Questions or comments are encouraged below!!

 

Why Everyone Should Do Body Weight Exercises

 

Over the years I think I have tried it all when it comes to exercise.

1.  Dumbbells

2.  Kettlebells

3.  Ropes

4.  Barbells

5.  Bands

6.  Medballs

7.  Weighted Vest

8.  Sleds

9.  A Basketball Hoop:)

10.  Many others some good some not so good

Most tools are great and should be used however I am here to convince everyone should do body weight exercises.

Here are the reasons.

1.  Beginner and advanced exercises.

Many people cannot hold a plank in neutral position yet want to push out some ugly push ups or other exercise that are more advanced for that person.

However progressions in bodyweight are limitless making it great for the advanced and beginner.

As a person perfects an exercise and lays a good foundation they can advance to more difficult exercises.

2.  Strength to weight ratio will get better.

I know so many that believe that endless amount of cardio is the answer for sustained weight loss (It’s Not)

Instead focus on steady progression with body weight exercises which will improve body composition (Body Fat % not just being skinny)

In the long run this will keep your weight where it should be.

I have never seen someone overweight that can bust out 20 plus PROPER pull ups and if they are they still have a great strength to body weight ratio.

3.  A person can put together some amazing circuits, finishers, and power movements with body weight exercises.

There are endless examples and intervals that can be put together to not only get the conditioning aspect but also the power component with exercise.

Here is just one example start with 10 of each then do 9 and all the way down to 1.  Make sure you track your time.

Burpees

Pull Ups

Renagade Rows

Squat jumps

4.  Easier to recover versus heavy weight training

I love heavy weight training don’t get me wrong.

However I love doing body weight because the recovery is almost always easier versus heavy weight training.

This means it can be trained a bit more often or in between weight training sessions.

On the other hand, we still need to be cognizant of recovery from all exercise and especially aware if we are improving over weeks, months, and years.

Comment below your favorite body weight exercise or what you think about this post!

Making New Years Resolutions Work

Every year people make resolutions to do or not do something.

But so many people fail!

What is the solution?

Is there a solution?

First lets look at the facts

“Based on the study, attempting to start anew by making a new year’s weight loss resolution is ill-recommended as it is a pointless exercise which only leaves you even less inclined to actually follow through with your weight loss goals.  The final results of the study showed that less than 20% of the subjects were able to follow through with their new year’s resolutions.” http://www.relationshippsychology.com/weight-loss/weight-loss-resolution-success-rate

I understand this is just one study but from experience most new years resolutions just do not last.

Although I could delve into great detail on all the reasons why they do not work instead lets focus on how they can work.

1.  Make them into new years goals not resolutions.

Resolutions make it seem like you have to give something up.  Instead lets turn the resolution into a goal.  When it comes to goals they should be written down, challenging, rewarding, and have a plan.  By writing it down the chance of success skyrockets alone.

“Study 1
According to Dave Kohl, professor emeritus at Virginia Tech:

  1. People who regularly write down their goals earn nine times as much over their lifetimes as people who don’t.
  2. 80% of Americans say they don’t have goals.
  3. 16% do have goals but don’t write them down.
  4. Less than 4% write down their goals and fewer than 1% review them on an ongoing basis.” http://www.goalsgonesocial.com/ggs2/blogs/write_down_goals

2.  Get some accountability

Lets face it when it comes to challenging goals and reaching them we all need help.  Accountability makes a person more likely to succeed for several different reasons.  The more accountable a person is to a group or to another person the more likely they are to succeed at a goal.

“Of course, there’s science behind this link between weight-loss success and accountability. A study in the current issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine confirms what weight-loss experts have long suspected: Accountability works. Study participants who kept food journals were twice as successful as those who did not.” http://www.nbcwashington.com/news/health/In_Weight_Loss__Accountability_Is_Essential.html

3.  Have an actionable plan

So many people set new years resolutions but have no real plan.  Without a plan it just will not work.  Just by saying something or half heartidly trying something will not work.  This is especially true when it comes to challenging goals such as starting and running a business, losing fat and keeping it off, or quitting smoking.  These are just three examples but any goal should have an action plan of things that need to be reach the goal and in many cases a new goal will need to be made.

So there you have how to make your goals stick for the new year.

I want to help so comment your new years goal or goals below.

 

Music With Workouts This New Years

When it comes to fitness and working out there are several ways to help increase intensity.

I see several reasons why to use music for workouts

1.  Decreases boredom

For the average person workouts can get boring and mundane.  When listening to your favorite music this can be helpful from workouts being mundane.

2.  Increase intensity

When it comes to workouts results happen with increased intensity.  I know several people that want (need) their hardcore or upbeat music to increase the intensity of their workouts.

3.  Variety through tempo

Depending on the interval or type of workout music can be used to match the tempo.  For example, doing a sprint or conditioning workouts can be different music than say lifting weights.

4.  The fun factor

Music is associated with fun and many do not think exercise is fun.  However we tend to associate certain music to fun and excitement and mixing that with exercise increases the fun factor.  If something is fun this increases the likelihood of continuing.  Continual progress is one of the most important keys to fitness success.

5.  Infinite Choices

People like different types of music so there are so many ways to get in great music.  I know of people that listen to 80’s ballads:)  Others listen to hardcore music, others country but the truth is whatever makes you want to workout, workout harder and do better is key!

So now that you know that workout music helps…. here is a workout radio station for you to listen to some upbeat music and the best part…. NO COMMERCIALS!

 

 

2013 New Years Fitness Predictions

1.  Gyms and health clubs around America will be packed.  A very small percentage of people will have improved by 2014.  Here is one example  “73 percent give up on their goals to lose weight, get fit or train for an event within six weeks, according to a new study from Harris Interactive and Bodybuilding.com.” (http://www.mensfitness.com/training/will-you-keep-your-fitness-resolution)

2.  The quick fix weight loss industry will continue to grow. The worst fad diets ever.  Yes there is one where you eat cotton balls!

3.  Fitness Revolution Franchise will be the place for local communities to continually see guaranteed results and why I joined the Fitness Revolution

4.  Metabolic Training will be the words used to help training a faster metabolism.

5.  More and more people will do shorter workouts 30 minutes or less because they are more effective and help save time.

6.  Fad diets and easy fixes will continue to thrive based on peoples desire for any easy way out but will not work in the long run.

7.  The same thing will be needed for long term weight loss.  More strength, more speed/power, and better lifestyles.  Basically proper hormone levels is the key to long term fat loss.

8.  At home workouts and online programs will grow along with small group training programs.

9.  Many people will think they know what to do but will not be doing the proper steps to become more fit and healthy.

10.  Hopefully people will understand that long duration aerobic exercise is not the answer for long term fat loss.

35 Years Old 35 Life Lessons

Over the years I believe I have learned many life lessons and here are some of them.

1.   If being lean, fit and healthy was easy, everyone would be lean fit and healthy.

2.  A person cannot be great at sprinting and long distance running at the same time.

3.  Going on diets is a terrible idea.

4.  The amount of exercise is dramatically less important when compared to progression.

5.  Recovery from exercise is WAY more important than most people realize.

6.  Strength and power are two keys to long term leanness and health.

7.  There is always someone better and someone worse.

8.  Having a good mile time is not the indicator of a great athlete.

9.  Eating should be based on individual goals not a diet.

10.  Some supplements are great but they do not replace nutrition.

11.  Moderate, repetitive cardio exercise sucks.

12.  Active listening can be challenging but it is very important.

13.  Introverted people have just as many benefits as extroverted people.

14.  Being a dad to a daughter is a bigger blessing than I could have ever imagined:)

15.  The Law of Action is super important to progress.

16.  Maintaining fitness (or anything for that matter) is not possible a person is either getting better or worse.

17.  Faith is a key component to actions.    I chose to have faith in something bigger than me ( in a god) and that god for me is the Triune God.

18.  If someone does not believe they can accomplish something they wont.

19.  If someone believes they can accomplish something the chances of success in that en-devour skyrocket.

20.  Discipline is a key to any success.

21.   Learning from peoples mistakes as well as their successes speeds up the learning curve.

22.  Being humble does not mean a lack of confidence.

23.  Almost everyone says they want to be healthy but many have not defined what that means to them.

24.  Weight loss and fat loss are very different.

25.  Prayer works for me.

26.  Hero’s are made not born.

27.  Money is neither good nor bad but a tool and more money only amplifies the true character of a person.

28.  Getting hit by a line drive 100 plus MPH hurts.

29.  Find your heroes but also be a hero

30.  Success is doing your absolute best regardless of what happens to you

31.   I think a person can learn a lot from life through sports.

32.  Education never ends.

33.  Time is limited and I believe we have one shot on earth so make the most of it.

34.  Great relationships are one key to happy life.

35.  The Golden Rule is a great way to live life.

The Problem With Fitness Marketing

Below is a question I asked in a survey awhile back.

If you could change one thing about the fitness/weight loss industry what would it be?

“Ban advertising of magic fixes

Getting out a message that people would want to get involved with.Not unreal ads.Telling people that it takes hard work ,commitment,ect.

Everbody telling the truth…no BS, no quick loss, just an honest process to loss weight and get in shape.

stop putting up super skinny spokes people. Use realistic healthy people

Get rid of misleading information, there are no quick fixes.

Get rid of all the hype and misinformation out there. There are a lot of shady people out there trying to make a buck.

No more quick fix ads

Feeling of getting ripped off because of false information and not knowing what to believe.

There is no quick fix, pill, or anything else that let’s you become fit without doing the work

The marketing crap!

Advertising for quick unrealistic results

Truth in advertising. There isn’t a quick-fix, it takes lifelong commitment and change. People get excited about quick fixes, and then get discouraged when they don’t last.

Tying both fitness and nutrition together more.

A grading system to all the fitness programs and nutrition options out there so people know what the best options are. It is cunfusing with all the info and it all says it is the best. Who do you believe?

So many bad choices that do not get results”

What do you think?  Comment Below!

What We Can Learn From The Olympics For Our Life

I am not sure about you but I absolutely love the Olympics.

I had the opportunity to train a few former Olympic Athletes and here are some things I learned from them and from watching the Olympics.

1) The Law of Action

When it comes to results in life a person can learn all they want and never achieve anything.

You can want, wish, and hope but without action nothing will happen.

For example, Michael Phelps said he did not train to his potential.  He might not be able to achieve his goals because he did not work as hard as he could.  The truth of the matter is genetics is really over rated.  I have never seen a baby do a black flip, jump, lift or do any of that stuff when they are born.  I have asked my daughter (on the left) to do flips it does not work:)

So what we learn is that it takes action, to achieve anything worthwhile!

2.  The Law of Faith/Belief

Nobody goes into wanting to lose or thinking they have no chance of winning.

The first step that helps people take action is belief.

They shoot for the gold, work for the gold but first they believe they can get to the olympics and even win the gold.

This happens with fitness goals all the time.

A person does not truly believe they can reach a goal so they never really work at it.

We can learn that we must first believe before we can ever achieve anything!

3.  The Law of Specific Training

When it comes to any training for a goal a person must be very detailed and specific.

A triathelete and a gymnast will and should train very different.

The details are super important and the abilities are very different.

A gymnast is not going to win in a triathlon and the reverse is also true.

So the first step is figuring out a goal then training specifically for it.

4.  The Law of  Discipline  

There are times that Olympians do not want to train but they train anyways.

They have to sacrifice so many things to become great.

They have to be disciplined in work ethic, nutrition,  training times, and routine.

We learn that discipline is the crucial ingredient to reaching any goal.

5.  The Law of Constant Improvement

My wife and I were discussing what do olympic gold medalists do after they win or after they break a new record.

She says they try to beat their last record.

I totally agree that they are never truly satisfied with their results they are always trying to get better and that is what makes them unique.

They always want to improve from where they are to where they want to go.

What we learn is that somebody who improves gradually and constantly will always beat the person who becomes complacent and content with their results.

 6.  The Law of Individual Team Work

The saying “a team is only as weak as its weakest link” is always true.

For a team to be better an individual has to get better.

Individuals should get better for themselves and for the team.

I will never forget my college basketball days when I sat on the bench.

Sitting on the bench is something I was not very good at so I worked as hard as I could.

Years later talking to a former teammate he said that it was us that made them better… that pushed them to become better.  It is nice to have an individual goal yet have the team support to become better than you could on your own.

What we learn is that we can help more people including ourselves when we become our absolute best!

7.  The Law of Failure

I am a perfectionist in many areas and that can be very bad because it can stop me from trying.

The rule is if you are not failing at something you are not trying…. I totally agree.

When it comes to the Olympics so many of these athletes started very young.

Tears of failure from falling, missing that jump, making mistakes are the only way to get to the success of getting to the Olympics.

Jerry Barca: “There is a gap between people that are really good and people who are extraordinary. One of the things that seem to always stand out is that people at the extraordinary level have a different relationship with failure, mainly they’re not phased or stopped by it.”

Dan Jansen: “That’s one of the reasons I ended up winning in the end. It is because I was never afraid to fail. The worst thing, and I always hear — quote —successful people say it is “Oh, my fear of failure is what drives me.” I don’t believe that. You may not like to get beat. But if you’re successful, you’re not afraid to fail because you can’t be. You’ve got to be innovative sometimes. You’ve got to take risks sometimes. People who are truly successful — they may say they’re afraid to fail, but more so it’s a dislike of failure.” http://plimptonmovie.com/updates/dan-jansen-success-failure-and-olympic-gold

 What we learn is to learn from failure, get better, and keep going no matter what.  

 

All this can be used to develop a any training goal.

 

You probably are not training for the Olympics but no matter your goal these points might help

What are your thoughts? Comment Below!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Getting Over A Fitness Plateau

1.  Exercise Less or More

When it comes fitness progression is key.  Many times exercising less can be the answer because intensity can be increased and recovery can be improved.  On the other hand, an increase in volume can help improve as well.  If you have been training for a long time without a week or two off take a break.  If you have been working out two times a week up it to three.  It really depends on the person and a qualified professional can help you improve on this.

2.  Train for a goal  

I am not sure if I have ever trained for a weight goal.  Instead I have trained for a specific strength, power, or speed goal.  I have also trained to be able to advance in specific body weight exercises.  The point here is focus your energy on getting to a specific result.  A word of caution here.  I do believe that goals can be conflicting.  For example, becoming really strong and becoming better at marathons are opposed.  That is not to say that a runner should not get stronger but the programming should be inline with the specific goal.

3.  Manage Stress and Sleep More

Our bodies need sleep and many times.  Most people say we need 7-9 hours of sleep.  When it comes to stress we all have it.  It is not the stress but rather the reaction to the stressful situation.  Things like prayer, meditation, focused relaxation, quite time, and much more can help break that plateau.

4.  Change nutrition

The obvious things are reducing bad carbs, sugar, alcohol, trans fat, and so on.  On the other hand, little things like maybe eating more or less could help depending on the person.  Eating more good fats or other nutrition tweaks may just improve performance.

5.  Get some support

This can come in so many forms from professional support to the support of a friend.  It could mean a training partner or a small group personal training class.

6.  Get some recovery

Massage, foam rolling, chiropractic care, band stretching, walking, yoga, vacation, hot cold showers, and many more are all examples of ways to recover.  Remember results happen after the workout.  Working hard is important but so is working smart and consistent.  Recovery techniques are crucial and might be what you need to bust through a plateau.

7.  Supplementation 

Finding supplementation for your goals is important.  It is not the first thing to look at however I believe it is the easiest way to see some results.  Try some supplements for performance and use those.  Figure out what you like and what your goals are then you can add those into your overall plan.  However some people focus on supplementation but do not look at nutrition or any other factors.

What have you done to break a plateau?  Comment below!

Supplements Worth A Look

1.  BCAA Branched-Chain Amino Acids.

Now this is not a new supplement or anything like that.

What are Branched-Chain Amino Acids?

They are essential amino acids Luecine, Isoluecine, and Valine make up the BCAA profile.

Who can potentially benefit from them?

Anyone in any type of fitness or sports program
Anyone lowering their calories to lose weight
Anyone that does not like the feeling of eating before working out.

Read this article to learn more http://jeremy.getprograde.com/BCAAs-and-Dieting.html

2.  Fish Oil or more specifically Krill Oil

Krill is defined as “any small shrimplike marine crustacean of the orderEuphausiacea :
the principal food of whalebone whales”  (http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/krill)

Unless someone has been living under a rock we all know that fish oil has so many benefits.

Here is an in depth analysis of krill oil http://jeremy.getprograde.com/essential-fatty-acid.html

3.  Multivitamin is for everyone.

Personally I do not care what others say about getting all nutrients from food but that is my opinion.

I believe even the best diets can be deficient in different nutrients.

As always though you should talk to your doctor about all nutrition and supplementation.

Comment which is your favorite supplement and the benefits you have had?

 

 

American Ninja Warrior Training

I am training for American Ninja Warrior.

Here are some things that I believe need to be a focus when training for this type of competition.

1.  Really focusing on grip strength.

Many of the successful warriors have great grip strength especially per pound of body weight.  I was really impressed with the football player who made it through because his weight was much greater than the other competitors (I digress).  The truth is that grip strength has to be incredible to do well in this competition.

Here are some examples of exercises I am using.

– Two finger pullups

– Two finger KB carries

– Weighted pull ups

2.  Must be explosive in the lower body.

The reasoning is because of the jumps that are needed throughout the competition.  Fortunately my many years of training for lower body jump height has potentially prepared me for this.  My main goal is to maintain strength and explosiveness in the lower body.

Here are some examples

– Single leg squats

– Deadlifts

– Different jump and sled work

 

3.  Advanced body weight training

In the past I wrote about different exercises for body weight.  I feel that strength per pound of body weight also known as relative strength is key.  None of the warriors have a high percentage of body fat and many do freestyle tricking or are rock climbers.  Without doing these specific things I will need to focus on other ways to be strong.

Here are some examples

– L-sit

– Planche

– Explosive dips

Here is some of the training I have done in the past

 

Comment What You Think… Is anything missing?