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Posted 03 April 2020 by Daniel DeMoss

Complete Guide: Best Upper Body


Calisthenics Workout Guide

Published: April 3rd 2020

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Some people remember the word calisthenics from way back, maybe from their grandparents. But believe me, there's nothing old or outdated about it.

Calisthenics is the foundation of all exercise routines. In fact, after witnessing a decrease of interest in the past, with all the new fitness machines coming up, recently, bodyweight exercises are back in the spotlight. And for good reason.

They can increase strength, resistance, and help you build lean muscle. Did I mention you can do all of that from the comfort of your home, with no equipment whatsoever?

If you're still not convinced, I'm going to show you the benefits of calisthenics and how you can create a great workout only with bodyweight exercises.

 

Guide to Calisthenics

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In short, calisthenics are exercises you can do with no equipment, just your body weight. You can create circuits, high-intensity interval training sessions, but also low impact workouts.

Benefits of calisthenics include improving cardiovascular health, resistance, and aiding in lowering blood sugar. (1)

Calisthenics has several effects on fitness performance starting from an early age and continuing to adults. It is also a quick and easy way to get back to a normal fitness routine after an injury. (2)

When doing bodyweight exercises it is important to focus on proper form. Just because you're not using heavy weights, doesn't mean you can't get injured. Always be mindful of how you feel.

Push yourself just enough to see progress, but not so much that you end up in pain.

If you're a beginner, remember to start small. Most exercises can be adapted for any fitness level, so use the one that suits you the most.

Remember, you should aim for progress, not perfection. You may not be able to do 3 sets of 15 repetitions of an exercise today, but if you do just one more rep than yesterday, it means you're making progress.

 

Best Upper Body Calisthenics Workout Plan

 

Push-ups

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You begin in a plank position just like before. However, for the push-up, you have a few modifications available.

Your feet can be as wide or as close to each other as it feels comfortable. The wider they will be, the more support and stability you'll have, so having wider than hip or even shoulder-width is a good idea for beginners.

Depending on your fitness level, you can also choose to have your knees on the ground.

Focus on having a straight line from your head to your navel, regardless of the position you choose for your feet.

Once you find your correct starting position, begin lowering down. Your elbows will be close to your body.

Once your chin is close to the ground, or you have a 90-degree angle in your elbows, come back up.

If you're a beginner, do as many as you can, ideally a minimum of 10. If you're more advanced aim for 15-20 push-ups per repetition.

 

Chest Dips

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For chest dips, you will need a bit of support. It’s ideal to use dip stations. But if you don't want to invest, don't worry! You can use a couple of chairs (just make sure they're sturdy and stable), the couch, or even the kitchen counter!

To begin, position yourself between the two bars/chairs/tables. Push yourself up until your arms are straight. Your feet shouldn't be touching the ground while you do the exercise, so keep them bent if you need to.

Lower yourself until you have a 90-degree angle at your elbows. When you reach this point, push back up until your arms are straight. Make sure your elbows are pointing straight, your abs are engaged, spine straight.

At this moment, you are doing a simple tricep dip. To turn it into a chest dip, all you need to do is lean your body forward. Do not swing forward and back between a straight and forward-leaning torso. Maintain the leaning position while you do the exercise.

 

Pull-Ups

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For pull-ups, you'll need a bar or a pull-up stand - somewhere you can easily hang from without the risk of injury.

Hold on to the bar with a grip slightly wider than shoulder-width. The palms can be facing forward or towards you, whichever you want.

Palms out make your biceps and lats work harder but it is considered a more difficult way of performing the exercise, so I wouldn't recommend it for beginners.

Whichever way you choose for your palms, make sure your arms are straight, core engaged.

Now pull yourself up until your chin is above the bar, then lower back down. Try to do 3 sets of 10-12 reps.

Beginners will probably need to stop quicker, and that's ok, just do as much as you can safely.

 

Plank

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Finally, holding a plank is an amazing core exercise. Start on all fours, then lift yourself on your hands and toes.

Arms should be just slightly wider than shoulder-width and feet about hip-width or a bit wider if you need more stability.

Make sure your body forms a straight line from your head to your navel. Avoid tilting your head back, but don't look down on the ground either. Ideally, find a point about 1-2 feet in front of you, on the ground and look there.

The idea is to make sure your head is in line with your spine so that you don't injure your neck. Simply hold this position for 1-2 minutes.

If you are a beginner, you can place your knees on the ground, making sure your body forms a straight line from head to knees.

 

In Conclusion...

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As you can see, you can have a great workout with just upper body calisthenics.

For a complete workout, always start with a warm-up. It can be a short low impact cardio session, for instance, followed by some dynamic stretches to warm up all the muscles involved.

Then take each exercise in order - or do them in a different order if you prefer. Do 3 sets for each exercise and aim for 10-12 repetitions.

If you are advanced, you can aim for more repetitions, but be mindful not to overdo it.

End you a short cool down, by stretching all the muscles you've worked.

Written By Daniel DeMoss

For more tips on creating the perfect home gym, easy workouts, and health advice visit my website: dumbbellsreview.com

Posted 29 March 2020 by Street Workout St Kilda

Calisthenics: The Future


Of Bodyweight Training

Published: Mar 29th 2020

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Calisthenics, also known as street workout, was established in Eastern Europe as a means of staying fit with minimal equipment. It incorporated basic bodyweight movement patterns, gymnastics, and new elements never before seen in the fitness community.

Calisthenics is a relatively new sport but has built a ton of momentum over a very short timeframe. The case for calisthenics is that it is not just another way to train. For many practitioners it’s a way of life. Unlike many other ways of training, calisthenics has higher goals.

Calisthenics goals

In calisthenics you don’t do push-ups to improve the number of push-ups you do, you don’t do pull-ups necessarily to improve how many pull-ups you can do. These are by-products, but not the end goal. Likewise, you don’t train for obtaining an aesthetic physique. It’s all part of the journey.

Beyond all this, the goal of calisthenics is to master movement. Yes, of course, there is a need for a basic level of strength that can only be achieved by smashing out repetitions. However, once you establish some basic strength, you will find new horizons.

Calisthenics branches out into 2 distinct paths: statics and dynamics. Statics is the path of strength. It is largely concerned with isometric holds. Isometric holds are positions that are held against gravity. In isometric holds, the muscles keep tension while staying the same length. The most basic example is the plank. High-level isometric holds include the human flag, planche, and front lever.

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Statics & Isometric Holds

Isometric holds are considerably more difficult than most isotonic contractions where muscles change length. There are several reasons for this:

  1. Isometric holds, or statics, have a greater time under tension. This is because most isotonic movements have a contraction and relaxation phase, whereas statics only have a contraction phase.
     
  2. Statics generally involve the entire body rather than specific muscle groups. The more muscles are involved, the quicker you run out of steam.
     
  3. Statics tend to suspend the body in maximum lever length positions. The longer the lever length the more force acts through it (in this case gravity) and therefore the more force needs to be generated to combat the resulting torque.
     
  4. In statics there is usually only 1 point of contact. This increases the need for balance and the recruitment of postural stabilization muscles.

 

Dynamics and barflow

Dynamics or barflow is about power, momentum and self-expression. Dynamics are also called calisthenics freestyle and is the format for calisthenics competitions all around the world. As the name implies, there are essentially no limits. Every athlete has their own style and unique moves.

At the heart of calisthenics freestyle, is how to move efficiently. This largely comes down to controlling momentum and understanding the mechanics of the body and the bar. Once this fundamental understanding is established, it becomes a creative process. Much like a painter explores new brush techniques, calisthenics athletes explore new ways to move in relation to the bar.

There are many aspects to freestyle. It’s not just about being the flashiest athlete. Flow, technique and uniqueness are also factors that are considered both casually and at the competition level. Although athletes have wildly different styles and tricks, calisthenics freestyle, like statics, has a ton of well-known ubiquitous moves that almost all athletes use.

As the sport gets more well-known and athletes continue to out-do themselves, calisthenics freestyle finds itself at the crossroads of innovation and human limitation. 

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How do I start calisthenics?

Calisthenics is not easy. However, as long as a logical path is taken it does not need to be needlessly complicated. Determination and a certain amount of grit is required to become proficient in calisthenics. The first step should always be to build a strong foundation.

Many people that start calisthenics have little to no experience in bodyweight strength training. This goes for most people, even those that train weights in the gym. The reality is training weights does not prepare you for calisthenics. The 2 training methods are completely different, and although you may pick up some movement patterns quicker, it’s important not to skip steps in the beginning.

A few things to keep in mind in calisthenics is the emphasis on certain parts of the body. Calisthenics is very upper body orientated. It’s important to start building strength in the arms, shoulders, and core. Not only is it important to build strength, but arguably power is most important in calisthenics.

The difference between strength and power is that power is explosive and allows us to expend a large amount of energy in bursts – whereas strength is all about control. Hey, but I thought statics were all about control? Yes, but consider how long you need to hold a static hold. Perhaps 5 seconds? The reality is, for most things in calisthenics, you will need power – you will need to be able to exert large amounts of energy in short bursts.  

 

What is a good strength foundation:

A good strength foundation should include all the basic movement patterns. These include horizontal push, vertical push, horizontal pull, vertical pull. In addition to this, you should have a good core – which should be trained using isometric exercises.

Here are some good benchmarks to aim for before progressing to calisthenics statics and dynamics. All reps are given per set, ideally, you should be doing 2/3 sets of each per workout.

  • Horizontal push: Push-ups – 30+
  • Vertical push: Pike push-ups 10+
  • Horizontal Pull: Inverted rows 10+
  • Vertical Pull: Pull-ups 12+
  • Core (abs): Hollow body hold 45 seconds
  • Core (lower back): Superman 45 seconds

The above should be considered a bare minimum, however this may be very hard for many people! It is essential to be build strength in steps and not to be discouraged by the required volume. Build up week by week. Do push-ups on the knees or pull-ups using bands in the beginning if you have to, but you should be in good shape if you keep the progress coming week in week out.

For someone who has never done strength training, achieving these numbers can take up to 6 months. For someone who has a background in weights, potentially you can already achieve these rep ranges. In that case, it might be time to start working on other aspects of calisthenics!

To boost your progress you might consider hiring a calisthenics personal trainer, who can show you the ropes, and give you a place to start for learning statics and dynamics.

Written by Vic, of Street Workout St Kilda

Posted 16 March 2020 by CutAndJacked.com

Home Gym: 10 Benefits To


Working Out At Home

Published: Mar 16th 2020

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1. Hygiene

If you work out at home or have a home gym you control the environment and the cleanliness.  No need to worry about contagious diseases and viruses. No need to wipe away the residue sweat from multiple other gym users, or be concerned with unhygienic changing-rooms or showers.

2. Save money

Gym memberships can get quite expensive these days. Home bodyweight workouts are free and even if you invest in a range of gym equipment for home use in the long-run this will save you money avoiding the monthly gym fees.

3. Train whenever you want

Not all gyms are open 24 hours, your home is.  This can be very convenient as you can workout at hours that fit your schedule and lifestyle.

4. Train how you want

You may want to try out or train in an unconventional manner without the peering eyes and potential cameras of a busy gym, training at home you can indeed train how you want.

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5. Wear what you want

Most gyms will not allow you to wear what you want, whether it's summer and you want to train in with no shirt or you want to lift first thing in the morning in your pajamas, it's your choice if you workout at home.

6. Increased focus

Gyms can be social environments but that can come with distractions. Sometimes you may want to avoid the chat and focus on your workout goals solely, training at home is the perfect way to focus on your workout and minimize those distractions.

7. Never wait for equipment

Busy gyms can hinder your plans. If you have the right equipment at home you will no longer have to waste time waiting for a free bench or squat rack. Doing supersets, drops sets and giant sets all become much easier when you don't have to share equipment.

8. Play your music

Sometimes the music in your commercial gym may not be to your taste. At home, you can play the music of your choice from speakers without the extra burden of wear headphones.

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9. Faster Workouts

You can get in a complete and fast workout at home as you can plan each exercise without someone getting in your way, chatting to fellow gymgoers or sharing/waiting for equipment.

10. Slower workouts

At home, there's no one asking "how many sets do you have left?" so there's no need to feel pressured to work through your sets fast.  At home, you can take as long as you want. 

+

Traveling to the gym takes time and may cost you money. Having a home gym or simply having the right equipment to train means no time, energy and money will be wasted on traveling to the gym leading to a more efficient workout and lifestyle.

Posted 14 March 2020 by

Recipe: Keto Chicken


And Chorizo Stew

Published: Mar 14th 2020

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The "Done For You" keto meal plans are completely customized based on your food preferences and weight loss goals. You can CLICK HERE to start creating your custom keto plan. Simply follow it to achieve a successful keto diet!

A very enticing dish that the whole family will surely love. The herbs and spices present in this stew recipe enhanced the flavor of the dish. It is a perfect dinner meal on a cold night.

Servings: 1

Ingredients:

  • 100 grams Chicken Thighs
  • 30 grams Smoked Chorizo
  • 10 grams Bell Pepper, diced
  • 1 clove Garlic, crushed
  • 3 Black Olives
  • 1 cup Chicken Stock
  • ¼ tsp Dried Oregano
  • ¼ tsp Paprika
  • Salt, to taste

Procedure:

  • 1. Sear chicken thighs in a lightly oiled braising pan.
  • 2. Add chorizo and stir until fat is rendered.
  • 3. Add bell pepper, olives, and garlic. Stir until aromatic.
  • 4. Add stock, oregano, and paprika. Simmer for 20-25 minutes.
  • 5. Season with salt to taste.

Nutritional Information:

  • Energy - 380 kcal
  • Protein - 24g
  • Fat - 30g
  • Carbohydrates - 3g

Click here for your custom keto diet plan

Posted 13 March 2020 by CutAndJacked.com

Gym Memes: Top 10


Leg Day Memes Vol.2

Published: Mar 13th 2020

10. T-Rex hates

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9. Lets...

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8. Leg day

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7. The mirror

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6. Legs 3x

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5.

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4.  Bring your friend

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3.  After leg day

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2. Injured

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1. 5000 calories

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Leg Day Meme Volume 1

Posted 06 March 2020 by

Recipe: Keto


Chocolate Cupcakes

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The "Done For You" keto meal plans are completely customized based on your food preferences and weight loss goals. You can CLICK HERE to start creating your custom keto plan. Simply follow it to achieve a successful keto diet!

  • Servings: 6⠀⠀⠀⠀

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup Almond Flour
  • ½ cup Erythritol
  • 1/3 cup Cocoa Powder
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • 1 tbsp Gelatin Powder
  • 3 Eggs, beaten

Instructions:

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Brush a muffin pan with butter.
2. Stir together all ingredients in a bowl.
3. Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 10-12 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Nutritional Information:

  • Energy - 225 kcal
  • Protein - 7g (11%)
  • Fat - 21g (80%)
  • Carbohydrates - 7g (9%)
  • Fiber - 3g

Click here for your custom keto diet plan

Posted 05 March 2020 by CutAndJacked.com

Intense Quick Home Chest Workout


(No Equipment Needed)

Published: Mar 5th 2020

Beginners note: If you struggle with pushups and need to make this workout easier this can be done on your knees.

Advanced note: If you want to make this workout much more difficult slow down each rep (3 seconds on the way down and 3 seconds on the way up)

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  • 1. Regular Pushups: 5 sets (30 seconds rest between sets) - 12, 10, 10, 8, 6 reps

1 minute 30 seconds rest between exercise

  • 2. Wide Pushups: 4 sets (30 seconds rest between sets) - 10, 10, 8, 6 reps

1 minute 30 seconds rest between exercise

  • 3. Close Grip/Diamond Pushups: 3 sets (30 seconds rest between sets) - 10, 8, 6

Enjoy.

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Posted 04 March 2020 by

Workout: Henry Cavill


Full-Body Workout

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  1. 2 x Olympic Clean And Press + 5x Kettlebell Squat @ 70% body weight
    (One combo every 30 seconds for 5 minutes)
     
  2. 2 x Two-hand kettlebell clean and squat
    (One combo every 30 seconds for 5 minutes.)
     
  3. Squats: 100 
    (Body-weight, break into sets of 25 if you need to)
     
  4. Box Step-up: 3 sets of 15 reps 
     
  5. Deck Squats: 3 sets of 15 reps 
     
  6. 20x Frog Hops + 40m Bear Crawl
    (Do 4 rounds of this combo, rest 2 minutes between sets)
     
  7. Man-Makers: 3 sets 20 reps
    (with dumbbells)
     
  8. Sit-ups: 3 sets of 20 reps

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Posted 03 March 2020 by CutAndJacked.com

Gym Memes: Top


10 Diet Gym Memes

Published: Mar 3rd 2020

10.  Cycling

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9. Perfect meal

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8.  Tracking macros

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7.  No gains

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6.  Cheat meal

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5.  3 long hours

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4.  All week

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3.  Yes

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2.  Fat ass

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1.  Carb free

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Posted 01 March 2020 by CutAndJacked.com

Top 10 Gym Memes


On Relationships ♥

Published: Mar 1st 2020

10. What do you do?

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9.  It's me or the gym

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8.  You are the reason

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7. Dinner

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6. Checking me out

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5. I heard

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4.  Dumped

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3.  The perfect relationship

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2. Gym crush

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1.  My relationship

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