Friday, November 2, 2007

Weekly Web Fitness: Ab Myths? Really? Still?

5 Myths Behind Building Great Abs
"Ab Myth #1: You Have to do Hundreds of Crunches to Get a 'Six-Pack'"

I just don't think this is true anymore. Does anybody really think, after reading years of headlines to the contrary, that hundreds of crunches is the path to a six-pack? Does anybody really think they will have a visible six-pack, despite 30% body fat, if they do enough crunches? No. No one does.

Ab Myth #1: That people are so dumb they still think you can attain a six-pack solely through hundreds of crunches.

"What you want to avoid is heavy, weight crunches. Remember the abs are still muscles; train them with weights and they will get bigger."

This is untrue for women, but even for men, the only place where your abs will noticeably protrude is at the top just under the ribs, which make your chest look bigger, not your belly. Larger abs will hold your guts (and I do mean internal organs) in better, making your resting appearance thinner. Another myth propagated by the fitness world. Sigh.

Women and Weight. No, Not the Kind You Worry About, the Kind You Pick Up. Or Should.
"Should women lift weights as part of their fitness program?

Great article by Kelly Mills. If you're not lifting, start.

Dancing their way to a fitness revolution
In the gym, that isn’t always the case, “because you have a lot of kids that are overweight, not motivated and they don’t always want to do a lot.”
But with DDR, all the kids were totally focused.

Traditionalists will decry the trend, saying things about fresh air, whippersnappers, and the zombifyin' effect of televisualgames. And that's the way they likes it!

I say whatever gets 'em moving.

Core Exercises That Really Work

Straight to the Bar twice in one post, you say? I just found it and totally love it.

Watch the video. I've done a lot of these core moves before, and they work. The problem is often getting to the point where you're strong enough to do them. I never expect to be able to do head-stand twists.

Ever notice how the guys you usually see doing these freak-strength moves are about five and half feet tall? My legs are almost that long. The good news for women is that these moves are much easier for shorter people. Some will be easier with a lower center of gravity, and some harder.

Experts Sound Off on Workout Grunting

"But, for some people, there was actually a small percentage increase when they grunted, in terms of the force produced," O'Connell said. For that reason, "I wouldn't be trying to tell people not to grunt," he said.

I don't scream or pound my chest, but I will grunt during my heavy deadlift pulls. I think that like screaming or listening to loud music, grunting causes a small amount of adrenaline to be released. It also just feels natural. Have you ever seen a spotting powerlifter slap another in the face to get him worked up for a big lift? Dude, that's hardcore.

Your Guide to the Glycemic Index

This is a good resources, a list of foods organized by ascending GI. Notice that pasta has a very decent number.


Anonymous said...

[Have nothing to say about abs. I don't care what the muscles look like as long as they do the job.]

Yes! women should work out. I remember a few years ago I was loading 25 lb. bags of flour into my car, carrying them two at a time, and the woman at the mill looked at me sort of wide-eyed and said "Isn't that too heavy?" and I shrugged and said "Hey, it's a six year old." She shook her head and said "I can't pick up my grandson anymore."
Not that I have any children, but this isn't just about avoiding osteoporis or looking toned. This stuff actually comes in handy In Real Life.

Mary Anne the dog lifter

Jeff said...

Appearance isn't the primary reason I lift, but it is a reason. We're social creatures.

Functional strength is a great reason to lift, one of the best. People think, "When am I ever going to need to pick hundreds of pounds up off the floor and set it back down repeatedly? And how often will it be attached to a bar just right for my grip?" But what you're training for under optimal conditions is the time when somebody awkwardly hands you a file box. Now the ability to lift 200 lbs with perfect form turns into not wrenching your back from being thrown off-balance by a 20 lb box.

As a dog lifter I'm sure you appreciate this. I've noticed that 50 lb nieces seem much heavier when they come flying through the air at you from out of nowhere, with no doubt in their trusting minds that you will catch them.

Anonymous said...

Boxes! You remind me that I'm going to be moving soon. Great reason to practice picking up heavy stuff. I've been lucky in the last several moves to get help from people I work with: we help each other lift/shove/drag all day, so we know how to cooperate when it's furniture and not dogs or crates.

Mary Anne the doglifter