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How To Get The Most From Your Bodyweight Exercise Routine

Feb 2, 2008
Bodyweight exercise routines were developed so that an individual can use their own body and movements to exercise as opposed to expensive gym or weight lifting equipment. Instead of building strength and endurance in just one area of your body it allows you to build it throughout your whole body.

Many of the exercises are familiar ones, or a new "take" on an old bodyweight exercise, but don't be fooled into thinking that it's not effective because it is familiar. Many newer forms and methods of the familiar exercises have been created as well as ideas for increasing the difficulty level of the exercise; things like adding ankle or wrist weights to your routine or different positioning of legs, arms or hands can change the set of muscles being used.

So you have decided to use bodyweight exercises as your workout routine? But how can you get the most from this routine?. These five tips, when used consistently, will do just that.

First, be sure to use several cardio vascular exercises as part of your over all bodyweight exercise workout. By alternating between first cardio warm ups and stretches and then bodyweight exercises then returning to cardio exercises you will naturally increase your heart rate, exercise your whole body and stretch the muscles preparing them for bodyweight exercises. One suggestion is to begin with a quick walk prior to your exercise routing, but the most effective method is to alternate between cardio, then bodyweight, returning to cardio and so forth. Exercises to best achieve a higher heart rate as well as to stretch and lengthen muscles are: stepping while rotating your arms, lunges with windmills or punches which alternate sides, marching in place, jumping jacks or jump rope, knee lifts, or front kicks.

To achieve the best possible fat burning results, break your exercise routine into two or three short segments. Try to implement a 10 minute routine while at work as opposed to a visit to the coffee pot. You will definitely return more revitalized.

Another technique as part of your routine workout that will help you achieve more results from your bodyweight exercises is using timed circuits. Timed circuits are "a series of exercises, performed one after the other, with little rest in between, according to the International Sports Science Association. This method is the one used by the British Royal Marine Commandos, many professional gymnastics and trainers.

To perform timed circuits you simply do a bodyweight exercise a certain number of times in a specified period of seconds. For example, thirty pull ups in thirty seconds would be a timed circuit bodyweight exercise, and then you would continue on to the next exercise and do it also a certain number of repetitions in a specified period of time. To achieve the best results of a timed circuit routine you need to the number of repetitions that you complete, without increasing the period of time to complete it.

A third tip for making the most of your bodyweight exercise routine is to keep a training log. Be sure to include the date, time, number of repetitions, time of repetitions and cardio exercise routines, and a start and stop time. This will allow you to do several things: track the exercises; the total workout time also and provide you with the information needed to determine when an increase is appropriate as well as how to vary your routine. Training logs are available online, (however some require you to join to use); you can create one on your spreadsheet program, or you may purchase one in a bookstore or online at Amazon.com such as The Body Minder and Exercise Journal, by Francis Wilkins; or The Ultimate Workout Guide by Suzanne Schlosberg.

The last tip is easy and fun. Vary your routine; don't perform the same familiar exercises over and over again. Many people from beginner to professional are familiar with over 25 standard exercises, many of which include variations on Jumping Jacks, Pull Ups, Sit Ups and Squats. Try some of the more advanced bodyweight exercises such as the Russian Twist, Hindu Pushups, and Burpees. You can also add variety to your bodyweight exercise routine by: changing the weight, leverage or resistance of a specific exercise, recruiting an exercise partner, and renting videos.

Using these tips can make help you achieve the maximum results possible in your bodyweight exercise routine and you don't have to spend hours at the gym slaving away at weight lifting equipment or purchasing expensive equipment for your home. It only takes minutes a day with a consistent bodyweight training program and these tips to increase your metabolism, increase and build muscle.
About the Author
Kevin Gianni is an internationally recognized health advocate, author & film consultant. He has helped thousands of people take control of their own health naturally. To find out more about Bodyweight Exercise , you can get a Free report "The 10 Best Bodyweight Exercises for Strength and Toning" by visiting Renegade Bodyweight Exercises at http://www.RenegadeBodyweightExercises.com .
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