Back in the Day
Back in the day (say 200,000 years ago) there was no such thing as a smith machine, or being able to join a crossfit class. We had to run and hunt to survive, fighting the elements and using the natural world as our gym. As the most intelligent species on the planet we have been able to make our lives easier with the use of inventions and ideas. This also applies to fitness. You must have seen the adverts on TV promising great abs with some bizarre contraption that you only have to use twice a week for 5 minutes. This might be an over exaggeration but you probably get what I am trying to say. These days everything is easy.
I am not against progress, but I think it is easy for some people to look for shortcuts or take the easy option. Gaining strength and size (as we always advise on PunchStrong.com) is all about hard work, and understanding why you are doing one exercise over another. As an example, if you take the TV advertised ab machines against performing hanging leg raises they both target area is the abs, but the hanging leg raises will also work your other stabilising muscles on your arms, back, chest, legs and obviously abs providing a more extensive workout. The problem with some abs machines or gadgets is they can focus on a single area and sometimes isolate the required muscle too much, this can cause problems with balancing the overall body and supporting muscles required to function in strength exercises.
Be a Caveman
Going back to the Caveman exercising, to state the obvious cavemen wouldn’t have had a gyms and would have unknowingly trained their bodies through a number of everyday tasks. For the modern man this could be compared to manual labour jobs such as building, gardening, agricultural work as well as military. These tasks use a multitude of muscles and provide a sustainable balance of muscle development throughout the body and not just focusing on a single area.
For all the office workers out there, to make the most of the training time you have why not try the following exercises as part of your training plans, and start using additional stability muscles like we did 200,000 years ago. Go back to your raw instinct and loose those fancy gadgets. Science has enabled us to understand the body but we all know you can’t cheat on getting big, gaining strength or Punching Strong!
- Tyre slams – head down your local tyre centre and they will normally give away tyres as they have to pay for disposal. Bigger the better
- Tyre lifts
- Chopping wood
- Rope climb
- Sandbag lifts
For additional details check out this video for some other ideas.