Machine Zombies! Well thats what I like to call them, and yes I will admit I was once one of them! At one point or another we have all been one, and your gym is full of them. People who walk from machine to machine pressing and pulling trying to get their bodies back into shape. Yet no matter how many hours they spend in the gym, no matter how much weight they are pushing or pulling, they just don't feel strong outside of the gym and stopped seeing results long ago.
There is hope for machine zombies, and it's a simple as stepping away from those clunky boring old machies and using functional exercises. Let me share with you my story, years ago I would spend an hour or more wandering from station to station trying to get stronger and put on muscle. However, when I left the gym I didn't feel strong at all, infact I felt weak and I was plagued by lower back pain! I tryed everything from seeing my chiropractor each week to spot training my lower back and nothing worked, that is untill I walked away from machines and focused on functional exercises.
Functional exercises would be any exercise that mirrors movements you perform in everyday life. Once I changed my own workouts around these exercises my lower back pain vanished and I felt stronger than ever before, not to mention a big drop in my body fat. Since then I have enjoyed using the same exercises to help many clients lose fat, feel stronger, and change their lives. Now I will be providing you with a list of the most essential exercises everyone must be using to feel stronger, lose weight, and stay active long into old age.
Squats: Squats are so important to your core strength and over all one of the best exercises you can perform. You squat to get into your car or get off the couch, you squat to jump or to get into position to pick things up off the floor. Everyone must squat!
Deadlifts: Lift with your legs not with your back! We have all heard this before, and the deadlift will teach you to do just that. You deadlift to pick anything up, this could be anything from lifting your new baby up off the floor or bending down to pick up heavy rocks or bags of dirt when gardening.
Pull Ups: One of the best upper body workouts and can be done to gain strength or muscular endurance. If you can't pull up then lets hope you never have to pull yourself up from a cliff edge or climb a tree fast to get away from an animal on a camping trip!
Push Ups: Training your core, chest, shoulders, and arms push ups are right up there with pull ups for training your upper body. You push doors open at the mall or office, and I am sure we have all pushed a car for a friend at one point.
Lunges: Training your whole lower body not only creating athletic strength but also providing flexibility and a sense of balance. You lunge when playing any sport, you lunge when stepping over wide objects.
Rows: There are so many variations of rows the possibilities are endless and you can hit all areas of your back. You pull open doors, pull the lawn mower out of the shed and so much more. Ever play tug of war, yep thats rowing too.
Over Head Pressing: From putting a box on a high shelf to a gymnast pressing up into a hand stand, over head pressing exercises are more than functional. They strengthen the shoulder and promote a stable shoulder joint.
A good trainer will be able to provide you with many variations of each of these exercises and ways to build up to being able to do them if you can't at first.
To start your own functional exercise program be sure to contact me Personal Trainer Timothy Bell at www.jungle-fit.com and be on your way to a stronger leaner body today!
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