Everyone once in awhile a friend asks me to attend a yoga class with her. Yoga is not really my thing. I much prefer to pump iron. I do do some basic yoga at home to work on my flexibility but this is limited to basic poses and I typically don’t spend more than 20min on it at a time. It just doesn’t keep my interest. But I realized this past weekend that what I really don’t like about yoga classes has more to do with the nature of practising in a yoga studio than with yoga itself.
Mainly I don’t like:
1) The migraine inducing incense burning in the lobby.
2) The over crowded studios that result in:
i) getting stuck next to the wall
ii) kicking or hitting said wall
iii) getting up close and personal with a stranger’s foot because they failed to stay perfectly centered on their mat leading into warrior 3
3) It is hard to relax when half the class is blowing raspberries (to relax their jaws???). It just makes me want to laugh.
4) I don’t like being trapped into the long class length. I personally would like to see a 30min class option.
5) The huge variation in how classes are conducted – The other day I nearly jumped out of skin everytime an instructor came and pressed my feet together or pressed down on my hips for some reason. I have never had instructors who do that before. Some warning before they grabbed me from behind in the dark would have been nice.
Complete 4 sets of 10 of each exercise. Rest as much as needed between sets.
Day 1 – Chest/Shoulders/triceps
a) commando pushups
b) decline pushups (feet elevated)
c) dive bombers pushups
d) press ups
Day 2 – back/biceps
a) let me ups
b) single arm kettlebell rows
c) two arm dumbbell rows
d) reverse dumbbell flyes
Day 3 – Legs
a) kettlebell squat (x20)
b) Kettlebell reverse lunge (x10 per leg)
c) kettlebell single leg deadlift (x10 per leg)
d) side lateral lunges (10x per leg)
So I tried Abel’s leg thrities the other day. I was doing a home workout so I did a modified version since I didn’t have a leg press or squat rack. I only did two rounds. Round one was hard. Round two was brutal. I can’t imagine doing three to four rounds. (Something to work towards!) I am looking forward (I think) to trying the original version with a leg press and squat rack at the gym. I have done high rep work before, but something about this combination of exercises at high reps back to back just floored me. It really kept my heart rate up and my legs were burning. I love workouts that keep it simple but intense. If you don’t know what Abel’s leg thrities are you can watch them on youtube here.
I just finished reading The Hard Gainer Solution by Scott Abel. I don’t think I really fall in the category of a “hardgainer” but I was curious to see what the take was on training for a “hardgainer”. Everyone says eat lots and push hard in the gym, but I wanted to see if there was more to it than that. This was book was a really interesting read. Mr. Abel advocates high volume rep style training that is not very typical of more traditional styles of body building in order to put on muscle mass. The most interesting part was the emphasis on avoiding excessive oxygen debt. In recent years more than ever I have noticed the fitness community as a whole has tended towards a “work harder, push harder, go faster, do HIIT everything, and gargle your heart!” attitude. To be told to avoid oxygen debt to build mass really got my attention. I also liked how the workouts in the book are designed so they can be done anywhere from 3 to 7 days a week if the rules provided are followed. I highly recommend reading this book. The content and writing is excellent and Mr. Abel is very generous at the end by including 80 complete workouts and multiple eating plans for various calorie intakes. Talk about body builder candy land.
The book can be found on amazon.ca here.