Exercises

Looking for some new exercises to introduce into your workout? I've got you covered... give these a try!

My Boyfriend Is Making Me Fat.

Dear Davey,

My entire life, I was always very lean. Until I met my boyfriend. In just 2 years, I’ve gained more than 30 pounds with no end in sight. I’m officially overweight. What do I do?

From,
Keith

b7b225c4dddf23bc08eb45f6b5381930Hey Keith,

While we might joke that relationships make us “fat and happy,” there may be some truth to the age-old adage. According to one poll, 62% of respondents report gaining 14 pounds or more after starting a relationship. And a frequently referenced study from the New England Journal of Medicine found that having an obese spouse makes you 37% more likely to become obese yourself.

And it makes sense. When we’re in a relationship and off the market, we might become less concerned with our appearance. For some people, this might be an excuse to slack off on exercise or indulge in unhealthy foods. Maybe we make more time for our partner, and less time for ourselves. Or maybe our partner is an enabler, and we adopt his or her unhealthy eating habits. Instead of the usual salad, we opt for the pizza.

But let’s be clear: Unless there’s a feeding tube down your throat or you’re being held prisoner, no one can make you fat without your permission. All of us, regardless of relationship status, must take responsibility for what goes into our mouths and the exercise we get. We must take responsibility for our health.

The reality is, being off the market isn’t an excuse to skip exercise. Beyond looking a certain way, exercise is a necessary component to a healthy and productive life. And while it’s great to make time for the people we love, we have more to give others when we prioritize ourselves. If your partner orders a pizza, you can still choose something healthier. It’s not an excuse.

As a human being with free will, don’t use your partner as an excuse; take responsibility for your choices and subsequent weight gain. Understand that through smarter food choices and through increased movement, you can reverse the trend – and perhaps even inspire change in your partner’s lifestyle.

Your boyfriend didn’t make you fat. You made yourself overweight. But by utilizing that same power of choice, you can also make yourself healthier and fit.

Love,
Davey

P.S. If you need help getting started, I’d recommend downloading Davey Wavey’s Bootcamp Workout. With a series of at-home workout programs, you can lose weight and build muscle.

Kegel Exercises For Men.

grunting

My face during Kegel exercises. Just kidding.

Say what? It’s true. Kegel exercises aren’t just for women.

First things first, what are the benefits of Kegel exercises for guys? Turns out, the list is pretty long and impressive:

  • Reduces urinary or fecal incontinence
  • Eliminates dribbling after urination
  • May even reduce premature ejaculation, erection issues and/or strength of the erection

In other words, Kegel exercises are good for your penis. And the great news is that you can do them pretty much anywhere at any time. In fact, I’m doing them right now.

Kegel exercises are all about strengthening your pelvic floor muscles, called the pubococcygeus or PC muscles for short. These muscles stretch from your anus to your sphincter and are actually pretty easy to identify. Next time you are peeing, cut off the stream halfway through your urination. The contraction that you feel is your PC muscles going to work.

Pelvic_Floor_MusclesA Kegel repetition is actually pretty easy. Simply contract and release your PC muscles. And then repeat. As you get more advanced, you may squeeze and hold for three seconds before releasing. When you become a Kegel expert, you’ll even be able to isolate each muscle in your pelvic floor and work them separately.

Experts recommend doing 3 sets of 15 repetitions per workout, which you can perform three times per day. An easy way to remember is to do your Kegels at breakfast, lunch and dinner. There’s no need to get undressed (unless you want to) and you can do your Kegels while standing, sitting or laying down.

Kegels are fast, simple and provide some great benefits. And since we already spend time exercising the rest of our body, why not rise to the occasion and make some extra time for our penises?

P.S. Also want a stronger core? Give Davey Wavey’s Six Pack Workout a try today and you’ll received 5, 12-minute professionally filmed ab workouts that you can do at home.

Does Tabata Work?

six pack absYou may have heard some chatter about Tabata workouts. But what are they? Do they work? And how can you use them?

Back in the mid-1990s, Tabata workouts were created by coaches of the Japanese speed skating team. Based on research around high intensity interval training, Tabata workouts consist of eight, 20-second high intensity rounds followed by 10 seconds of rest. In total, the workout is just four minutes long.

Here’s what an example Tabata workout could look like:

  • 20 seconds push-ups
  • 10 seconds rest
  • 20 seconds squat-jumps
  • 10 seconds rest
  • 20 seconds plank
  • 10 seconds rest
  • 20 seconds burpees
  • 10 seconds rest
  • Repeat x2

Short but intense, these four-minute, ultra-efficient workouts have become increasingly popular and widespread – especially in CrossFit and group exercise classes.

But does Tabata actually work?

The American Council on Exercise studied Tabata-style workouts and concluded that they meet or exceed established guidelines for improving cardiovascular fitness and modifying body composition. In terms of calorie burn, Tabata met guidelines for calorie expenditure for improving health and facilitating weight loss. In other words, Tabata workouts can provide some great benefits – especially for individuals with tight schedules.

So how can you use Tabata workouts?

If you don’t have a lot of time, doing a 4-minute Tabata workout is certainly better than nothing. Keep in mind, the idea is to crank up the intensity and power through the 20-second intervals. Even with just 4 minutes, you should feel significantly challenged.

If you want something more, many people perform 4 Tabata workouts in a row, with 1 minute of rest in between. In all, the workout will take just 20 minutes. And you’ll certainly feel it.

Personally, I like to use Tabata workouts as a finisher. In other words, I like putting a 4-minute Tabata workout at the end of my cardio and strength training program. If I worked my leg muscles, I might end the workout with a 4-minute Tabata workout that focuses on my lower body. It really can give your workout that extra oomph.

So, give it a spin. Try the above Tabata workout or put together your own routine.

P.S. Crunched for time and want to try a high intensity interval workout? Download Davey Wavey’s Bootcamp Workout and get started right now.

Friday Workout: Can You Beat My Time?

tumblr_myhrg90ghT1rbvfj1o1_500It’s Friday and a solid workout is a great start to your weekend.

Because I’m a big fan of efficient workouts that don’t waste time, I’ve got a challenge for you. Below, I’ve put together a kick-ass workout that I’d like you to try. You can do it at home, in your dorm or even in your office during a lunch break. Time yourself with a stopwatch and complete each exercise. Then, post your time in the comments below.

In case you don’t know how to perform any of the exercises, I’ve linked to an instructional video on YouTube for each.

Here’s the workout:

Remember, you’re doing this for time! So move quickly through the workout – but don’t compromise your form.

My time was 4:32. What did you get? Let me know in the comments below.

P.S. For guided, 15-minute workouts that you can do at home and without any equipment, download Davey Wavey’s Bootcamp Workout.

10 Commandments of Building Muscle.

davey wavey gymLike many gym goers, you’re probably looking to add some bulk in the form of muscle.

It’s true that all of us have different bodies and have experienced different fitness journeys – but there are some common threads that can help create an effective foundation for building muscle.

  1. Thou shalt perform 8 – 12 repetitions of each exercise. Different repetition ranges target different goals; for purposes of building size and strength, most trainers recommend a rep range of between 8 and 12. Lower ranges target strength and higher ranges target endurance.
  2. Thou shalt perform each set until failure. Simply put, this means that you’d be unable to perform an additional repetition at that resistance level without compromising form. If you are targeting 10 repetitions, this would mean that you couldn’t do an 11th. If you can, increase the resistance.
  3. Thou shalt use an overloading stimulus. This means subjecting the muscles to more than they’re capable of handling. When you do that, you’ll be creating tiny tears in your muscles, which then must be rebuilt back up stronger than they were before.
  4. Thou shalt progressively overload. Keep in mind, your overloading stimulus won’t be so overloading after a few weeks or a month. As your muscles grow, you’ll need to up the resistance to keep your muscles growing. You’ll need to continue doing this until you reach your goal.
  5. Thou shalt use free weights. If you’re just getting started with building muscle, you can get great results with your body weight (i.e., push-ups at home) or by using machines. But to really progress to create athletic-level muscle size and strength, you’ll need to hit the free weights. They allow you to progress to higher levels of resistance without the balancing assistance and limitations of strength training machines.
  6. Thou shalt eat before and after exercise. Before your workout, consume some sort of complex carbohydrate to ensure a steady release of energy during your workout. It will help you power through the routine. After your workout, consume simple carbohydrates (the resulting spike in your blood sugar will quickly get the glucose from the carbohydrates into your muscle cells where they’re needed) and protein.
  7. Honor thy body with rest and recovery. After you’ve created the tiny tears in your muscle, you must back off and allow your body a chance to rebuild them. This process makes the muscles stronger and bigger.
  8. Thou shall still do cardio. The truth is, cardiovascular exercise is great for all people, regardless of their goals. Because you don’t need the additional calorie burn, you’re doing cardio for the overall health benefits; as such, limit cardio to a handful of sessions per week that last less than 30 minutes. High intensity interval training is best-suited for individuals looking to retain and/or build muscle.
  9. Thou shalt consume sufficient calories, protein, carbohydrates and fat. Remember, you can’t build something out of nothing! To add any type of mass, you must consume more calories than required to maintain your body weight. Most trainers recommend a calorie surplus of 250 – 500 calories per day. Proteins provide the amino acids that muscles need to generate new tissue. Carbohydrates and dietary fats, on the other hand, provide the energy for the process to occur. Without these in place, your results will be hampered.
  10. Thou shalt assess progress. Every few weeks or perhaps once a month, look at your progress. Take measurements including muscle size, waist size and so on. Compare pictures. And then adjust your program accordingly. If you notice that you’re gaining fat, for example, decrease your calorie surplus accordingly.

Do you have any additional commandments for building muscle size? Share them in the comments below.

P.S. If you’re looking to add muscle mass, download Davey Wavey’s Foolproof Guide to Building Muscle. It’s a guaranteed, step-by-step guide to achieving your size and strength goals.