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Posts 121 - 130 of 208

Ask the Trainer: 6-Pack Abs

By: Chad Ruf, Director of Personal Training

Question: What is the best way to get a 6-pack? I know that one must get his/her body fat percentage way down but I'm a fairly athletic, skinny guy and I cannot get a 6-pack for the life of me. Help!

 

Answer: As long as your body fat gets below 10%, you will begin to see your abs. We all have a 6-pack under there but it can be accentuated by doing crunches and possibly weighted sit-ups. I would recommend doing abs every other day so they have time to repair and thus grow. Getting a 6-pack is a combination of building muscle, doing cardiovascular exercise and eating correctly. Genetics help too.

Ask the Trainer: Leg Definition

By: Chad Ruf, Director of Personal Training

Question: I want more definition in my legs. I've been working out "like a man" for about 3 years now, drinking protein with no noticeable improvement. What can I do?

 

Answer: If you have been working out very hard for about three years I am sure you have put on some muscle mass in your legs. You should be showing strength gains and increase in muscle size. However, definition comes down to diet and cardio. If you are not doing so, I would make sure you are keeping your repetitions in the 15 to 20 range on legs. You need to incorporate lunges and leg extensions to give you more definition in the quadriceps area. I would also look at the amount of cardiovascular exercise you are doing - make sure you are getting in 4 – 5 days a week over 30 minute sessions. Best of luck!

Ask the Trainer: Leg Definition

By: Chad Ruf, Director of Personal Training

Question: I want more definition in my legs. I've been working out "like a man" for about 3 years now, drinking protein with no noticeable improvement. What can I do?

 

Answer: If you have been working out very hard for about three years I am sure you have put on some muscle mass in your legs. You should be showing strength gains and increase in muscle size. However, definition comes down to diet and cardio. If you are not doing so, I would make sure you are keeping your repetitions in the 15 to 20 range on legs. You need to incorporate lunges and leg extensions to give you more definition in the quadriceps area. I would also look at the amount of cardiovascular exercise you are doing - make sure you are getting in 4 – 5 days a week over 30 minute sessions. Best of luck!

Ask the Trainer: Lower Ab Workouts

By: Chad Ruf, Director of Personal Training

Question: Any good workouts for the lower abs? Needing help with that. Thanks!

 

Answer: There is not a specific exercise for this as you cannot spot reduce. You actually end up working the whole area even if you are trying to emphasize just the upper or lower piece. One thing that will help emphasize and make you feel this area is a hanging knee tuck. Hang from a bar and bring your legs up in front of you with your knees at a 90 degree angle. Lift your knees half-way up to your torso and return in a slow motion. This will make you feel the lower portion more but you are working every muscle.

 

Check out our YouTube video for a Hanging Knee Tuck Demonstration.

Ask the Trainer: Lower Ab Workouts

By: Chad Ruf, Director of Personal Training

Question: Any good workouts for the lower abs? Needing help with that. Thanks!

 

Answer: There is not a specific exercise for this as you cannot spot reduce. You actually end up working the whole area even if you are trying to emphasize just the upper or lower piece. One thing that will help emphasize and make you feel this area is a hanging knee tuck. Hang from a bar and bring your legs up in front of you with your knees at a 90 degree angle. Lift your knees half-way up to your torso and return in a slow motion. This will make you feel the lower portion more but you are working every muscle.

 

Check out our YouTube video for a Hanging Knee Tuck Demonstration.

Ask the Trainer: AM vs. PM Workouts

By: Chad Ruf, Director of Personal Training

Question: I do a lot of body weight training and high-intensity-interval-training in the mornings - what are the best exercises for the AM compared to when I am in the gym at night for resistance? Is there a balance? We try to do a lot of plyo in the morning to jump-start metabolism.


Answer: It seems that you have the right idea. I assume you are doing your resistance training in the evening because you have more energy for your weight training workout after several meals? Is sounds like you are doing body weight training with the goal of increasing your heart rate in the AM on an empty stomach to burn more fat. I guess the most important thing to consider is not the type of exercise you are doing, but how elevated your heart rate is during exercise. I would focus on exercises in the morning that do not interfere with the exercises you are doing later in the day. In other words, I wouldn’t do a lot of push-ups in the AM if you are working your chest, for example. Just try breaking up the body parts and keeping your heart rate elevated and you should continue to see results.

Ask the Trainer: AM vs. PM Workouts

By: Chad Ruf, Director of Personal Training

Question: I do a lot of body weight training and high-intensity-interval-training in the mornings - what are the best exercises for the AM compared to when I am in the gym at night for resistance? Is there a balance? We try to do a lot of plyo in the morning to jump-start metabolism.


Answer: It seems that you have the right idea. I assume you are doing your resistance training in the evening because you have more energy for your weight training workout after several meals? Is sounds like you are doing body weight training with the goal of increasing your heart rate in the AM on an empty stomach to burn more fat. I guess the most important thing to consider is not the type of exercise you are doing, but how elevated your heart rate is during exercise. I would focus on exercises in the morning that do not interfere with the exercises you are doing later in the day. In other words, I wouldn’t do a lot of push-ups in the AM if you are working your chest, for example. Just try breaking up the body parts and keeping your heart rate elevated and you should continue to see results.

Ask the Trainer: Recovering from Injuries

By: Chad Ruf, Director of Personal Training

Question: In your opinion, what are the top 5 worst exercises for a bad rotator cuff?

Answer: I would say that your biggest enemy here is not properly stretching and warming up before exercise. If I did have to pick a couple exercises that would not be great they would be the overhead barbell or dumbbell press and the flat bench press. All of these exercises put pressure on the rotator cuff especially if you break the 90 degree angle with the elbow.

Question: I had gall bladder surgery 2 months ago. What's the best exercise for me?

Answer: Dorothy, although many experts say it is important to begin walking around soon after surgery, I would be very conscious as you could re-injure your incision sites. I wouldn’t begin an exercise program until you have an examination and are released by the doctor to do so. He or she will give you any restrictions you have to work with and I recommend you get with a personal trainer to have them help customize a program around them. Take it slow and get your advice from the doctor.

Ask the Trainer: Recovering from Injuries

By: Chad Ruf, Director of Personal Training

Question: In your opinion, what are the top 5 worst exercises for a bad rotator cuff?

Answer: I would say that your biggest enemy here is not properly stretching and warming up before exercise. If I did have to pick a couple exercises that would not be great they would be the overhead barbell or dumbbell press and the flat bench press. All of these exercises put pressure on the rotator cuff especially if you break the 90 degree angle with the elbow.

Question: I had gall bladder surgery 2 months ago. What's the best exercise for me?

Answer: Dorothy, although many experts say it is important to begin walking around soon after surgery, I would be very conscious as you could re-injure your incision sites. I wouldn’t begin an exercise program until you have an examination and are released by the doctor to do so. He or she will give you any restrictions you have to work with and I recommend you get with a personal trainer to have them help customize a program around them. Take it slow and get your advice from the doctor.

Ask the Trainer: Pulling Muscles in Back

By: Chad Ruf, Director of Personal Training

Question: I am constantly pulling muscles in my lower back when I do deadlifts - even after taking 2 weeks off, and starting with almost no weight. I've tried super-slow, low-weight-high repetitions, stretching, etc. Of course, I'm also lifting with my glutes, not my back. Any ideas?

 

Answer: There are a couple things you can do to help with this. One issue many have with the lower back is a weak core. Try strengthening your core with leg lifts, crunches, and sit-ups on a stability ball. You can also try wearing a power belt to hold your core tight and help support your lower back. The best way to handle this would be to eliminate dead lifts from your workout unless you need to do them for testing or a sport specific exercise.

Posts 121 - 130 of 208