Getting Lean And Ripped Without The Bulky Fat Look

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The days of trying to bulk up as much as possible and look like a bodybuilder are out. Now the body image most men are looking for and most women find attractive is that of professional sprinters and swimmers. They are lean and toned with just the right amount of muscle and body fat to turn heads wherever they go. This is not a simple look to achieve, though. You must follow the right training protocols and make sure your diet is in check.

Top 4 things you should do

1. Cardio sprint training

When it comes to cardio, the preferred method is interval training. This allows you to push your body for a short period of time, and then take a period to rest and recover before going once again. It is preferable because it will also help develop your fast twitch muscle fibers and will kick your metabolism into high gear.

Any form of exercise that is very intense will help with your fat-burning process as the body will expend a great deal of calories repairing the damaged muscle tissue once you are finished your workout. Try to incorporate at least two sessions of interval training into your week — one focusing on longer intervals of one minute with two minutes of rest, and the other focusing on shorter intervals of 20 to 30 seconds with one to one and a half minutes of rest. Note: The shorter the interval, the more intense it should be.

2.Plyometric training

Plyometric training uses exercises that require you to move very quickly using only your body weight. They are great for developing explosive power and strength. Since you are not acting against a heavy weight load, you will not get the same hypertrophy effects that result in the bulky muscle look. Typical plyometric exercises are:

Box jumps: Jump onto as high of a box as you can, and then back down again. For added difficulty, try doing this off one leg.

Squat jumps: Begin by moving from a standing position down into a full squat, then rapidly push off the ground using your thigh muscles to propel yourself as high as possible. Land once again in a full squat position and repeat 10 to 15 times.

Clap push-ups: Perform the normal push-up action, but use your muscles to propel your body off the ground in the up phase. While in the air, clap your hands together and then land back into the push-up position to complete the downward portion of the exercise.

3. Circuit speed training

Circuit training is another good option for those looking to get lean and toned. It works in a similar way to supersets, but instead of working opposing muscle groups, you complete an entire circuit of exercises for your whole body. Perform one set of each exercise before moving onto the next one with little or no rest in-between. Once you finish one whole circuit, take a few minutes to rest, and then complete it again one to three more times.

Additionally, you may want to focus on increasing the velocity in which you perform the concentric (working portion) of your exercise, as this will help develop your fast twitch muscle fibers more.

4. Supersets

Supersets are an exercise technique in which you perform one set of an exercise for one muscle group, and then another set for an antagonistic group. For example, complete one set of bicep curls followed by one set of overhead tricep presses. Since these muscles oppose one another, while one is working, the other can rest. This both cuts down on your total workout time and increases the overall amount of calories burned during your training session.

Getting lean and toned is dependent on burning more calories than you take in to remove excess body fat, so anything that helps you accomplish this is a step in the right direction. Try to incorporate these types of exercises into your workout as much as possible. Good examples are chest presses supersetted with bent-over rows and leg extensions supersetted with hamstring curls.

Top 3 things to avoid

1. Taking long rest periods during sets

The general guideline for building a great deal of mass states that you should allow ample rest time between sets to let your muscles recover. This enables you to lift maximally on your next set. While this principle still holds true for putting getting big, reducing this rest time will increase your metabolism, helping you get leaner.

Since your goal is not to achieve your maximum size, the shortened rest breaks will not hinder you in getting good muscle definition. You still need to rest enough so that you can challenge yourself, but there is no need for two-minute rest periods anymore.

2. Neglecting all forms of cardio

If you want to get that lean look, you have to do some cardio training. Former methods enforced the principle of boycotting all cardio as it burned precious calories that could potentially go toward muscle growth. This is fine if you don’t wish to control your body-fat levels, but in order to see your hard-earned muscles, cardio is essential.

3. Eating everything in sight

Doing this will add mass, but a greater portion of it will be body fat, bringing you further away from the toned physique you’re looking for.

*Also note
If you are looking to develop a defined yet muscular body, put some of these principles into effect. You do not have to be huge to be strong, and most people these days prefer a more toned appearance over a bulky look. Don’t forget to stretch, make sure your diet is free from all junk and processed foods, and make sure you are eating five to six times a day to keep your metabolism up. Once you have mastered both the workout and the diet, your physique will get noticed.

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5 Benefits of Sprint Training

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If you are looking to improve your physical conditioning, sprint training is one of the best cardiovascular and muscle building exercises. Many individuals prefer sprint training because it takes less time than traditional cardio exercises that have you running on a treadmill for thirty to sixty minutes, still consumes a large amount of calories, and utilizes energy burst training that has shown to provide better cardiovascular health.

The 5 benefits of sprint training include:

1. Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption
2. Metabolic Adaptations
3. Phosphate Metabolism
4. Glycolysis
5. Intramuscluar Buffering Capacity

Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption (EPOC)
One of the biggest benefits you will get from sprinting is the EPOC effects it creates. This is where the body will continue to burn calories after the finishing the fitness workout routine to bring the body back to its former state of rest.

EPOC is a measurably increased rate of oxygen intake following strenuous activity. The extra oxygen is used in the processes that restore the body to a resting state and adapt it to the exercise just performed. These include: hormone balancing, replenishment of fuel stores, cellular repair, and anabolism. It also is accompanied by an elevated consumption of fuel, and some studies found that included an elevated consumption of fat.

Metabolic Adaptations
When you perform a number of sprint training workouts, the body increases its ability to produce enzymes that are going to work at increasing the storage capacity of the muscle for energy substrates such as adenosine triphosphate (ATP). ATP is a multifunctional nucleotide (molecules which comprise the structural units of RNA and DNA), and is most important in cell biology as a coenzyme that is the “molecular unit of currency” of intracellular energy transfer. In this role, ATP transports chemical energy within cells for metabolism.

Increase muscle energy storage capacity then has the corresponding effect of enabling harder and longer workouts before fatigue sets in. This is particularly noticeable in intense aerobic workouts that require large oxygen utilization.

Phosphate Metabolism
The next benefit you will get with sprint training is the effect of phosphate metabolism. Phosphate creating stores comprise a major component of the body’s fuel source for muscular activity. Increasing this storage capacity will improve your body’s ability to breakdown fat for better energy consumption and encourages weight loss.

Myokinase is an enzyme that is responsible for resynthesizing the energy from phosphate creatine, and with sprint training, it will increase its concentration within the muscle tissue.

Glycolysis
The next adaptation that will occur after you have been doing sprint training for a period of time is that of glycolysis. This is the primary form of metabolism used during a ten second all out wind sprint and contributes between 55 and 75% towards energy production during exercise.

Phosphofructokinase (PFK), and enzyme that catalyses of phosphorylation of the glycolytic intermediate fructose phosphate, has also been show to increase during sprint training along with lactate dehydrogenase and glycogen phosphorylase. PFK is is important in regulating the process of breaking down simple sugar glucose within the body that produces more energy.

Intramusclar Buffering Capacity
Finally, the last adaptation that is seen with sprint training is the buffering capacity of the muscle. During glycoglysis, various byproducts are created such as lactic acid, and when these accumulate, it causes the extreme feelings of fatigue in the muscle tissues. This then forces you to stop exercising as the fatigue sets in and often will be the end of your workout.

Overtime, sprint training will increase your ability to buffer these byproducts so that you can then workout for a longer period of time while maintaining that intensity.

So the next time you are debating about whether to do a sprint training session or a moderate paced cardiovascular session lasting for 40 minutes, opt for the sprint session. The benefits you will receive are far more numerous and fat loss will be kicked up a notch as an added benefit.

Keep in mind that for these types of benefits to occur, you want your sprints to last somewhere in the neighborhood of 20 to 40 seconds, followed by a 40 to 90 second rest period. Repeat this process a total of six to eight times and begin and end with a five minute dynamic warm-up and cool-down.

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Most Important Factors To Consider When Losing Weight And Burning Fat

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In general, people will practice cardiovascular activities and forget about weight bearing exercises when it comes to burning fat. Yet there are still many trainers who will say that aerobic exercises burn off fat and weightlifting is only used to build muscle bulk. This statement is not entirely correct because the more muscle mass one acquires through weight-bearing exercises, the more he will burn fat calories even at rest.

Cardiovascular activity combined with weight training will result in much more effective fat loss. Cardiovascular exercises will raise muscle metabolism during the activity and for a short time after the exercise session. Weight training, on the other hand, will raise your muscle metabolism during the exercise session and for a long time after the exercise session. Some high intensity trainers have even seen their metabolism rise for several days following their training session.

Performing adequate weight training exercises should limit your repetitions anywhere from 1 to 20 (more or less). Such resistance on muscles will make their tissue leaner and stronger. The muscle development will take place during the rest period following the resistance training. Therefore, sufficient rest periods are essential.

Whether your goal is to tone or build muscles, it is important to know what happens during the muscle training process. When lifting weights, muscle tissues are torn apart (at the microscopic level) from the stress, and it’s in the recuperation period that your muscles become stronger and, therefore, able to support the extra stress. Usually the recuperation period required is 24 to 48 hours after the weight lifting activity.

The last most important factor to consider when trying to burn fat or lose weight is that lots of muscle mass can be lost as a result. As muscle mass will keep your metabolism high, try to avoid quick weight loss through miracle diets or starvation. This weight loss will be regained just as quickly. Instead, opt for a gradual fat loss routine by combining weight training and cardiovascular activities, and allow muscle mass to build up and increase your metabolism. Results may take a little longer, but they will last for a longer period of time.

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Benefits of Rowing

Whether you already row or are considering rowing to keep in shape, lose weight, cross-train for another sport, compete on the water or rehabilitate from injury or surgery, rowing is the complete exercise for you.

Arms, legs, chest, back, abs—even your mind. Your whole body gets a complete workout from the efficient, rhythmic motion of rowing. Rowing is such a great exercise in so many different ways.

* Low-impact (easy on the knees and ankles)
* High calorie burner (because it uses so many muscle groups)
* Great for joint health (joints move through a wide range of motion)
* Upper body (completes the stroke)
* Lower body (the legs initiate the drive)
* Works the back and abs too!
* Superb aerobic fitness (great for cardiovascular fitness)
* Relieves Stress (for overall health and well-being)

This is different from the rowing you may have done as a kid in a rowboat. The difference lies in the sliding seat. Your legs compress and extend with every stroke—in addition to the more obvious work being done by the back and arms.

Legs: You begin each stroke with your legs compressed and your shins vertical. You initiate the drive with the powerful muscles of your legs, and finish with your legs fully extended. Rowing promotes both strength and flexibility through this wide range of leg motion.

Arms: At the catch, your arms are outstretched; at the finish of the stroke, they have pulled the handle into your abdomen. As with the legs, this range of motion promotes both strength and flexibility.

Core: chest, back, abs: At the start of the stroke, the power of the legs is connected to the handle by means of the arms and the core muscles of the body. Then the back is more fully involved as it swings open through the middle of the stroke. Finally, the body is stabilized at the finish by the abdominal muscles.

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The Advantages Of Training Brazilian Jiu-jitsu

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If your goal is to become a fighter or to be able to defend yourself completely, Brazilian Jiu-jitsu has significant advantages over most other martial arts. It remains the only single style that addresses all areas of fighting completely without the need for cross-training. Brazilian Jiu-jitsu was designed as a fighting style to defeat other martial arts, where styles like Boxing, Karate, Kung Fu and Tae Kwon Do all specialize in striking someone, none of them present solutions for someone who is pinned on the ground; conversely, Jiu-jitsu offers solutions for defending against striking attacks while standing and on the ground in addition to all methods of grappling attacks. With the popularity of contests like the Ultimate Fighting Championship, you will see people naming their styles as Wrestling or Kickboxing, but they all (and must) supplement their training with Brazilian Jiu-jitsu. To this day, there are still fighters entering the cage with Brazilian Jiu-jitsu as their only method of training to ensure their victories.

The Military has recognized the effectiveness of Brazilian Jiu-jitsu as a martial art not only for sportive contests, but in the real world as well. America’s Army cannot afford to buy into theories or Hollywood myths about martial arts; for a soldier, knowledge of martial arts is life and death, not a hobby or a film script. Through a scientific method, trial and error and process of elimination, The United States Army chose Brazilian Jiu-jitsu to be the core of their Combatives Program. In 2002, SFC Matthew Larson re-wrote the Army Combatives Manual (FM 3-25.150) and made Brazilian Jiu-jitsu the backbone for the entire work. Today, it is hard to find any elite Military or Law Enforcement agency that does not incorporate Brazilian Jiu-jitsu as a serious part of their doctrine.

12 reasons why Brazilian Jiu-jitsu is great for your mind and body:

1. Losing weight and gaining a ripped functional body

2. Helps release stress through riveting physical activity

3. Teaches you to protect yourself and your loved ones

4. Surprise yourself with what you’re capable of achieving

5. Avoid confusion and unnecessary situations

6. Make lifelong friends

7. Gain greater vigor and energy throughout the day

8. Quit cigarettes and other bad habits

9. Become full of self-confidence and self-love

10. Learn ways to change what you don’t like about your life!

11. Jiu Jitsu teaches you to move and to use your body improving your coordination

12. Gives you another goal to achieve in life, should you choose to master the art or achieve success in competition

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7 Ways To Achieve Fat Loss

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Rowing Machine Benefits

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Muscle Workout
Rowing machines work on a large group of muscles at a single stretch. Hence, during rowing machine exercise there is a significant emphasis on the thighs, stomach, hips and torso, along with the pelvis that comes into act. This way, while exercising with rowing machine, the whole body gets toned up. Rowing machine benefits are also visible on the back of the upper arms and shoulders.

Strength Training
The most important benefit of the rowing machine is that it helps to strengthen the core muscles, that is the upper body muscles. While exercising on a rowing machine, a significant amount of resistance is placed on the upper body muscles. Hence, regular workout on a rowing machine adds strength to muscles in the chest, forearms and shoulders. Rowing machine also builds up the calf muscles to a certain extent. Rowing machines are also beneficial for strength building of heart and lung muscles as well.

Calorie Burning
Movement of the body helps burn the calories and since rowing machine requires a lot of movements of the body, it certainly helps to burn the excessive calories from the body. Calorie burning certainly helps to lose weight to a significant extent. Rowing machine burns out the calories and reduces lean muscle mass. Hence the body gets leaner and free from those added calories. This way those who are overweight can enjoy the benefits of a rowing machine.

Low Impact Machine
Rowing machine is very soft on the various joints since it is a low impact machine. Hence, no added stress is applied on the knees and elbows, like some of the other exercise equipments. So, even elderly people can benefit a lot from the rowing machine exercises. One can adjust the resistance, as well as the speed of the rowing machine as per the requirements so that the body doesn’t get overstressed.

Stress Reduction
Exercise, especially with rowing machine is a great stress buster when done on a regular basis. This is also an important yet underrated significance of the rowing machines. Exercising regularly on the rowing machine reduces anxiety disorders and stress to a great extent.

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