Fitness Talks: Adjustable Dumbbell Types You Need to Know About

What makes an adjustable dumbbell such a hit amongst fitness freaks is the convenience it provides over regular dumbbells. You can adjust weight by simply switching the weight plates and thus can perform tougher workouts like drop set etc. without any help.

There are 3 types of adjustable dumbbells and in each varies the system of weight change and each comes with its own pros and cons. So if you’re looking to upgrade over regular dumbbells, here’s what you need to know.

1. Clamp system

In a clamp system, you need to add the weight plates into the dumbbell manually. Once that’s done, tighten the nut or collar at the end of the dumbbell to ensure the weights are held tightly in place as you lift.

One of the reasons this adjusting system is highly popular amongst most fitness pros and newbies alike is because of its low cost. Also, it’s more durable as it doesn’t involve any plastic parts. So for a budget buyer, it’s the best adjustable dumbbell set. Pro Iron dumbbells are some of the best clamp system models.

2. Pin System

The pin system works very similarly to most machines in the gym. All you need to do it put in the pin into the hole of the preferred weight. The weights are usually marked with labels. The pin holds the weight against the bar thus making lifting heavy safer.

The pin system too is quite durable but will require you to put the dumbbell down and make the adjustment before you lift again. PowerBlock is one of the top brands for pin system adjustable dumbbells.

Adjustable Dumbbells

3. Dial System

Is convenience a deciding factor for you? Then this is the ideal adjustable dumbbell. Its convenience is unmatched. To switch weights all you need to do is turn the dial on the plate rack and set it to the preferred weight.

Once the dial is adjusted the weights are automatically held in place. These adjustable dumbbells aren’t for the budget buyers as they cost above $500-$600 but if you really want to take your workouts up a notch, you don’t want to miss out on these. Check out the Bowflex SelectTech 552 as it’s the top-rated dial system model by FitnessGuyd.

4. Verdict

For the budget buyers, the selection is simple. Go for an adjustable dumbbell with the clamp system but if budget isn’t an issue and you’re looking for a convenient and quick way of switching weights, the dial system is the obvious buy.

Adjustable Dumbbells 2

Introduction To Achieving 6 Pack Abs And A Flatter Stomach

There are many workouts and exercises you can do for abs but in order to make drastic improvements on your stomach and abs, you will need to make a lifestyle change. Healthy eating (a lower fat diet) will help reduce the fat in your body (along with physical activity). Doing crunches is not simple enough to achieve a six pack abs or washboard abs, it will take commitment and dedication but results can be had with hard work and a good diet.

First off I would recommend checking out AskMen.coms Ab Guide. They have some great information there as well.

Diet

I have already introduced the idea of eating healthy in order to achieve your Ab goals. I would work on cutting out the sweets from your diet. This will help drastically on the fat intakes you have. One tip I would like to pass along is to take out all your junk food from your cupboards and give it away, then go to the store and replace that junk food with healthy fruits, vegetables, and alternate snacks. Check out Wikipedias Healthy Diet entry for more information.

Cardio

Cardio is important if you need to burn fat, actually, it is great for your body either way and will help a lot with achieving your ab goals. A few things you could are running (10-20 minutes, whatever you can do, push yourself), swimming, and biking. The first two would probably be your best bet since biking does not rely as much on your abs as the others do. If you need to burn fat this is where you are going to do it, ab workouts only workout the muscle underneath the fat.

Ab Workouts

Check out these sites for many great ab exercises until our list goes up:

  • Ab and Core Exercise Progression
  • Real Women’s Fitness Ab Section (men can use them too)
  • AskMen.coms Ab Guide
  • How to Structure Your Ab Workout for Better Abs

There are many other resources online for great ab workouts, I will write a post in the coming weeks with my personal favorite exercises for abs. Comment below if there is anything you would like to add!

Physical Activities You Can Do With Your Family

Parents are trying to teach their children to lead healthier lifestyles at a younger age. This is great and I hope more parents start taking up this approach to help with the awful obesity problems plaguing the United States.

The ways with which we can achieve a better fitness and health, we can do the following things with our family:-

Biking

This has to be my top activity to do with children. Most kids love being out in the neighborhood on their bike but also don’t hesitate to take them to the park, or on a nearby trail and let them enjoy the outdoors from a young age.

Canoeing

The lake or the river are a great destination for this activity, make sure you have an adult with the children and be patient with them. Teach them to the proper way to paddle and any safety information you need to pass on to them, before going out. Don’t forget the life jackets!

Frisbee

Go to the park or the beach (my favorite) and play Frisbee, don’t leave the little ones out either, it is also fun to play in the knee-deep water.

Or you could just go out and throw a ball around, be it a basketball, baseball, nerf ball, play tag with your kids. They will probably brag about it at school that their mom and dad come out and play tag with them, or duck, duck, goose even.

Have fun with them, on whatever activity you decide.

These are just a few examples of activities your whole family can enjoy, add your suggestions to the comments!

A Guide to Workouts and Staying Active on the Road.

When you are out on the road traveling for either business or leisure it is not always possible to stay inactive for days or weeks at a time. Your body will start losing muscle over the course of even a week so staying active is essential. Depending on your accommodations when you are on the road (hotel, camping, relatives or friends house) reflect what you will be able to do physically to stay in shape.

General

  • Running – Ask someone where a safe route would be to run, as you may not be familiar with the area and the roads. Go out during daylight hours to be safe.
  • Pushups – Make a rigorous pushup routine to do in your room, use different hand positions to work out different parts of your upper body. Including shoulders, triceps, and chest.
  • Crunches – There are so many ab workouts you can do in your hotel room or lodging that your abs can get just as good of a workout on vacation as they would at home or at the gym. Plus the fact that your eating habits may abnormal (more grease, more fast food), crunches and running are great for burning those excess calories.
  • Squats/Lunges – Doing some weightless squats will help your legs stay active and not lose too much of your hard work.
  • Swimming – Swimming is a great workout for the entire body. Most hotels have pools (and maybe a hot tub for some relaxing after a hard swim or day) and you can get some laps in. Make sure you bring goggles so you don’t run into the edge of the pool! If you are camping, there is also a possibility of swimming, call ahead and ask.

Hotel

Quite a few hotels have access to weight rooms with a few basic machines, which could include treadmills, bikes, and a few weight machines. Use the machines to your advantage, usually, they are not the best quality or most useful but if you can get a few upper body exercises in, it will definitely help keep those muscles active.

Camping

While camping you can do various activities including hiking, mountain biking, canoeing, swimming. Call ahead to where you will be staying and see the activities that they would recommend doing to stay active. Camping is usually a relaxing vacation choice, but that does not mean that you should take the entire trip off, get out and do something, be active, there will be plenty of time to relax at other points of the day.

Relatives or Friends

Ask your family or friends if there is something you can get out and do to stay active during your visit. Maybe they will get out and do something with you. Ask them for good running routes to avoid high traffic areas and other dangerous areas.

Conclusion

As you can see there are so many options to stay active when you are out on the road and there really is no reason to not even attempt to get 15-30 minutes into a day, even if you are busy most of the day. It will make you feel much better and could help you sleep better on that awful hotel bed you have to stay on for a week.

I am on the road while writing this and I must say I have felt much better on the days that I got up and did some running and pushups compared to the days I did not. Leave your traveling workout tips in the comments.

Beginners Guide To Chest Development – Bench Press

For many men the chest is a very important part of their workout routine. Well today you’re in luck, I am going to explain some basic beginner chest development strategies and lifts to help you reach your goals.

Bench Press

Probably the most common chest exercise, and for good reason.  The bench press is considered the major chest workout, and if used with a couple other chest exercises you can be looking more ripped than ever after a little work.

If you are unsure of the proper form while bench pressing I recommend taking a look at this guide.

If you are a true beginner for benching you could try the following workout below. Do not be afraid to customize this workout and make it your own, I would love to see your ideas in the comments!

Pushups: 4 sets @ maximum you can achieve (20 is a good starting goal). Once you get to your goal of completing all the sets/reps I would start on a real bench.

Bench Press: I would start off benching by using low weights so you can get used to the bar over the top of you and get a feel for the lift. If you are not a complete beginner I would start out with this routine to build chest muscle. Make sure you warm up and stretch properly before you begin the exercises. Remember to have an experienced spotter as well, never bench alone.

Day 1: 10, 8, 6 (reps). Use a weight you are confident you can achieve and adjust accordingly.

Day 2: 6, 4, 4 (reps). Go up in weight for the first set and push yourself to complete the reps while maintaining proper and safe form.

Day 3: 10, 3, 3, 3 (reps). On this day I would recommend a good solid high rep warmup (always warm up properly) and then higher weight at lower reps. What this will do is build muscle. Higher reps tone muscle, lower reps, higher weights build them.

*Note: Those are not consecutive days. The Day is representative of your chest workout day. I like to let my chest rest ATLEAST 3 days (or until not sore) to work it out again. If you workout while you are still sore you may risk injury and you will not develop how you should.

This is just an example I would do if I was trying to build a bigger chest using bench press. Remember before starting any workout routine to consult your doctor and if you are unsure as to what you should do I would recommend hiring a personal trainer.

The only way you are going to build a solid chest is to work hard and use proper form, I can not stress that enough. Your chest should be burning after each workout and you should really feel the weight.  Push yourself, if you can do an extra rep try to, but make sure your spotter is aware. Make sure you do not bounce the bar of your chest to try and do more weight or extra reps, this is extremely dangerous and can cause serious problems and injuries.

I hope this is helpful to beginners and experienced gym rats alike. More on Chest Development coming in the next few weeks.