Thursday, December 6, 2012

Old School 30 minute workout

Want to get a good workout in 30 minutes> No weight equipment necessary?

Try this;

1 set 10 reps of Sphinx stretch for lower back ( lay face down, rise up slowly with hands beneath shoulders)
1 set 25 reps of leg pull ins. Sit on floor draw knees into chest and out again.
1 set 15 reps of lunges to warm up legs

1 set 25 -30 reps regular push-ups
1 set 25-30 reps wide arm push ups
1 set 10 reps pull-ups
1 set 10 reps dips (between 2 chairs)
1 set 10 reps  chin ups ( hands face in)

1 set crunches

1 set leg pull in to chest
1 set legs rise. ( raise both  legs off floor lying flat, hold 1 straight out, raise one higher)

If you have time after this- go for a walk or swim.

This should take 30 minutes or so.. Great for hotel rooms while traveling.

Monday, December 3, 2012

More on Food

I eat very little or no processed food. 
That means I don't buy frozen food dinners, canned main dishes, ready made breads, cakes, etc. 
I eat mostly fresh vegetables, lean protein from fish and chicken and turkey, some fruits and moderation. I use almond flour and flax seeds, eat some beans and other nuts. I do like a beer or a glass of red wine, and my treats are dark chocolate ( 72% or above), and coffee. 

This works for me and will work for you. You can lose weight, lower blood pressure and  recover sooner and stringer from a workout. The secret is in eating simple, tasty and wholesome foods you like and stay away from fast food, prepared food loaded with preservatives and salt.

It is not complicated find what foods work for you and stay away from chemically processed, genetically modified and fake stuff. 
Don't drink sugared drinks or energy drinks that are loaded with junk.

Drink water and beverages low in fruit juice.

Live better longer!

Here is a good link to follow up with>>>>>> Underground wellness

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Foods to avoid

If you are working out to maintain your health and strength you must pay special attention to what you eat. 
Having added protein is a good thing, especially if it is from the best sources you can afford. Eggs, lean meats, chicken and fish. I avoid farm raised fish, and try to eat vegetarian fed chicken and eggs.

Junk food has to go! You can't eat sugar, and should try to avoid all grains." Healthy "whole grains are simply NOT HEALTHY. This is a selling scam put on you by the big agricultural companies. Eating pasta and other wheat products is especially bad for your heart health. Though you may not be gluten intolerant, or have celiac disease, these foods are still hurting your energy and recovery.

Check out the Wheat Belly information by Dr William Davis. He is a cardiologist who also understands diet, exercise and strength training, and does this himself.
What you put in your body matters even more as you age. If you want to keep the strong bones and muscle you need to feel younger food has got to be chosen carefully.
Avoid the foods that can huts you like GMO Soy, corn, sugar, and fried foods.
Stick to good healthy salads with Kale, Spinach, Bok Choy, lots of other greens as well.
Cook a chicken breast in olive oil and garlic, throw in some sliced onions, broccoli, kale and whatever you have and cover the pan. It will steam the flavors into the veggies.  Quick and easy.

For breakfast: try a "cereal" made with a few tbs of almond meal, a small amount of oat bran, ground or whole flax, blueberries and a dash of xylitol or other healthy sweetener if you need it.
Stir and heat until at a consistency you like.
You can also take the same mix and add an egg, 1 tsp baking power and bake into a bread in 1.5 minutes in the microwave. Look for almond meal bread recipes on the web. This is low carb, has good protein and no garbage food in it.
Here is a pizza crust with similar ingredients..

Stoke the fire and use only the best wood!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Keep at it to Stop Hurting!

We all have some pain in our joints or muscles. This is unfortunately a fact for anyone over 50. My own pain is in my neck and lower back, where I have degenerative discs, and in my hips where they are simply wearing out.
Not much I can do for this other than surgery which at this point is not a consideration. I can maintain these parts of my body to keep them as useful as they can be and as pain free.
I do regular stretching for the back and neck, while consciously watching my posture especially when sitting for a long period of time. I use a lumbar support for the back, and try not to strain the neck.
I also do lower back exercises. I will warm up my core with ab work, then hit the lower back extension machine where I will do 1 set with warm up weight and one set of 6-9 reps with loaded weight. This is part of my every 3 day back workout. Then I move on to the other back exercises I do which include pull-ups and lat machine pull downs.
For the lower back the daily stretch is a must.Every time it feels tight, or on rising in the morning, a routine of stretches that takes only a few minutes will make a world of difference in how you feel.
The neck can be stretched and strengthened too. All this will help with the pain management.

This book really helps!!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

More Motivation for "Older" Weight Trainers

This is Dan Lurie  ... a runner up to the Mr America winner in the 1940's... a self trained body builder who overcame a heart problem as a kid and went on to train many famous athletes including Lou Ferrigno, the original Hulk of TV fame. He also held many Guiness Records for push ups , sit ups and more.
Dan was the Sealtest Big Top Strongman on TV in the 1950s and 60s.
 He has always trained hard and he still hits the weights daily at AGE 89!
Are you Motivated yet?

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Friday, August 17, 2012

Blood Pressure!

Some people are afraid that weight training will cause their blood pressure to rise, and it could be bad for you.
This is simply been proven to be not true. Studies including one in the UK show that strength training improved muscle and skin, as well as lowering blood pressure in men studied..."Thus, circuit weight training can elicit marked improvements in muscular strength and modest improvements in body composition and cardiorespiratory endurance. Circuit weight training does not exacerbate resting or exercise blood pressure and may have beneficial effects." 

So enjoy the benefits of weight training which are many..

quoted from: Harris KAHolly RG

Thursday, August 16, 2012

REST is Ultra Important for Recovery

Before I post the next part of my 3 day routine...Chest/Shoulders/Triceps..we shold mention REST.
Listen to the body...if you are hurting, especia;;y in the lower back..don't work out that day..or the next if needed. You could do back strecthes gentyl if you are able, but the weights can hinder the recovery time.
I found this oput the hard way, insisting on working out though I was in pain and it only made th pain worse.
Taking NSAIDS like Ibuprofen is a bad idea to enable yourslef to work out. You could truly injure yourself.
Its not worth it. Resting will bring you back stronger!

I don't mean to lay down unless that is all you can do. Walk, stretch, swim, do something low impact . YOGA is good as is the P90X recovery routine. Just enjoy the time.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Arm builder

After you complete the back routine in the last post...your arms should be warmed up and ready!
Start with alternate ad dumbbell curls. Use a weight that you can do 8 repetitions with. Next add to the weight and do at least 6 reps. Next go heavier and do 4. Lastly a set of whatever you can do 1 or 2 reps with. This should be enough.
If you have any arm power left, try a set of reverse curls or hammer curls with the dumbbells or a curl bar.
This could be followed by some concentration curls with a lighter weight...seated.
Arms are tough but worth the effort.
This entire routine for back and arms should take about 30 minutes. No breaks between sets.
Now go drink some protein!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

A routine to try

Try this for back and biceps. I train these together, then have two days consecutively of the other body parts grouped.

Warm up......  I do leg raises slowly to warm lower back and abs. 1 set of 20 to 30 ...slow! Try to not swing the legs up. Hold them out straight if you can at the end.

Ab machine set of crunches with warm up weight. I use 40. Then a set with as much as you can handle for 10 reps. I use 70 or 80  but machines vary.
Lastly I do side bends or cable twists for back and abs together.

Now onto the back work....  One set of warm up rows  with weight. Increase weight for a second real set.
One set of pull downs with moderate weight, the increased weight for a second set.
Now that you are warmed up...I do pull ups with full extension, for as many as I can get. 10 to 20. Often it may be 12 or so just depends on how I feel that day.

Dumbbell rows..bend over with a knee on a bench pull the dumbbell to the chest using the last and arm, no jerking. Smooth movement and slow. I use 50 lbs here. Then do the other side.

One set of shoulder shrugs with heavy bells. I use 50 lbs.

Now onto the arm routine, check back tomorrow.

Monday, August 6, 2012


Face up to the fact that GRAVITY is working on pulling your body down every moment of every day. If you don't work to counteract the effects you will sag like an old beach ball.
Keeping you muscles strong and your bones solid and supportive will do a lot to keep your body erect and your back straight.
Regular stress on the frame and muscle will accomplish a lot for keeping you feeling and looking younger than your years.
Pick up something heavy!

If your work out consists of a tread mill or stationary bike and no lifting or weight machines you are missing the best you can do for your overall conditioning.
Why spend a half hour pedaling to nowhere?
Lift some weights!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

You love to Run? Be Careful....

Recent studies reported at the Mayo Clinic show that endurance exercise especially done o the extreme as in marathons, half marathons, iron man, etc...can cause damage due to stress in the heart. This damage gets worse when the entrance exercises are repeated.
So if you love to run, and run miles and miles, or bike mile and miles,or swim he the may be hurting yourself.
Regular non extreme cardio an be a good thing, but like anything taken to extremes it can be dangerous.

Strength training  with flexibility stretching and some added cardio if u a better plan!

Report on endurance cardio follows...


Thursday, August 2, 2012

Don't Neglect the Legs

Your legs need even more work to stay strong and give your body the support it requires. Leg routines should include extensions a machine,or with boots. A warm up set followed by an amount of weight you can only get 6 to 8 reps out of souls do the sure to warmup the knees adquately so to avoid any injury to these vital joints.
You should also do leg presses or the ultimate leg move the squat. Squats with deep breathing are some of the overall best growth and strength exercises, not just for legs but for the whole body.
A routine of squats, heavy bench presses, lat pull downs and overhead presses can be a fabulous overall routine and one that will promote growth  If done heavy and slow with good breathing.
Remember as always be sure you are up to this type of routine and your Dr has given you the ok.
Stay long!

Tuesday, July 31, 2012


As we age we lose muscle. That is a fact that is hard to face as you get into your later 40's you still work out but don't see the results that you did years ago. This is frustrating and requires a different mind-set. You should aim to be as STRONG and HEALTHY as you can, and to retain as much muscle and bone density as you are able.
If you look at older strength trained people they almost all look younger due to their more erect frame, tighter torso and better range of movement.
This is where it's at for all of us. Stay harder, tighter, but most of all feel better. There are no shortcuts, and it will take work to stay that way.
In this linked article, much older and frail individuals were able to gain muscle and strength when using resistance training. Don't get frail!! Start now while you can make the most of it.
Stay long!

Saturday, July 28, 2012

You gotta move!

Maybe you can't get to the gym or just don't want to hit the weights is perfectly fine to take a day off, and do something relaxing. But if you can work it into the day...walk. Walking alone is great exercise, and very good for clearing the stress of daly living. Weight training is essential in my program to keep the body toned and the frame strong. But a walk or light aerobic exercise is the perfect break from routine and can be easily worked Into amyone's day. Get some air...see the sights or just take a stroll In a nice nearb park. The weights will still be there for you later.
My Grandfather walked every day for miles well into his late 80's. Here's to walking!

  New Balance 606 Walking Shoes

Friday, July 27, 2012

Go All the Way

If you are not doing the reps on the machines or free weights with a full motion in each one, you could be wasting a lot of time and energy. For example a curl for your arms should use the whole extension of your arm, not a half way down and back up move. Unless you are very advanced and have a reason for that shortened rep.
A pull up on a bar requires the same. You should be going all the way down each rep. If your last one or two are not full, but the prior ones were that is ok. But cheating to get more reps when you are training is not helpful except on the last rep or two.
Also while we are at it...rushing the set is not helpful either.Take your time make the most of every rep and each set you do.
all the way down!!

That will make it all worth while in the end. Progress!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Great Ab exercises!

Everyone seems to be concerned about abs. At the store magazine rack it seems there are more pictures of people showing "abs" than ever, with article on how to get great abs with no work. Right!
You can't get great anything with out working for it.   Face it.

The good news about that is-
 You don't have to kill yourself either.
 What you really should be after-- especially us older trainees-- is  a solid strong core. A mid-section that is tight and firm and holds us up straight, and supports us when we need the abdominal and back muscles to work.
This make everything better, sitting, standing, walking, driving. Every other exercise too becomes a bit easier.

You should begin by warming up the are with leg raises and stretches. Leg raise can be done while leaning back sitting on the floor, legs in and out to the chest slowly for 25-50 reps.
Then alternate holding one straight leg off the ground as high up as you can, then the other, while lying on your back.

Next on to the big exercise ball or stay on the floor for crunches. The ball works best. Sit on it, and lean back into the sit up position. Crunch by rolling the ball under yourself slightly. 25 reps or more.

If you have access to dumbells, with one in each hand do a set of sidebends, slowly bending over to stretch and tone the sides and back.
A cable is great for this and you can stretch and twist also by holding the cable at waist height, and turning to pull the cable using your midsection.

Lastly if you have ab machines, use the ones with weight. Do a set of 6 to 12 reps, and continue to add weight until you can only  do one or two reps. You will find over time the weight used for the one or two will become six to ten, and your mid-section will be tighter and stronger. CORE BABY!

After this ab workout you are ready for your other daily exercises.

This whole routine should take no more then TEN (10) minutes if done quickly and with little or no rest between each move. Drink a little water constantly.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Living Longer?

This is derived from an article on Blue Zone longevity. The Bluezones web site offers many tips and ideas for how to love longer, and where people really do!
To live years longer one should :

1. Move Naturally

Americans burn fewer than 100 calories a day engaged in “exercise”. We can get more physical activity naturally if we live in walkable communities, de-convenience our homes by getting rid of power tools and grow gardens. Walking is the best activity for longevity.

2. Know your Purpose

People who know why they wake up in the morning live up to seven years longer than those who don’t. Know your values, passions and talents–and how to share them on a regular basis.

3. Down Shift

Chronic inflammation caused by stress is related to every major, age-related disease. To reverse inflammation, find time each day to meditate, nap, pray or enjoy a happy hour.

4. 80% Rule

Cut 20% of your calories with evidence based practices: eat a big breakfast, eat with your family, remove the TV from your dining area and say pre-meal expressions of appreciation.

5. Plant Slant

Eat mostly a plant-based diet heavy on beans, nuts and green plants. Eat meat in small portions (the size of a deck of cards) fewer than twice weekly. For recipe ideas download our Blue Zones Recipe Booklet.

6. Wine at 5

Drinkers out-live non-drinkers. Two glasses of wine daily will add years to your life, especially when consumed during a plant-based meal.

7. Family First

Living in a thriving family is worth a half a dozen extra years of life expectancy. Invest time in your kids, nurture a monogamous relationship and keep your aging parents nearby.

8. Belong

Recommit, reconnect or explore a new faith-based community. It doesn’t matter if you’re Christian, Jewish, Muslim or Buddhist. People who show up to their faith community four times a month live an extra 4-14 years.

9. Right Tribe

Your friends have a long-term and measure impact on your health and longevity. Taking stock in who your friends are and expanding your social circle to include healthy-minded, supportive people might be the most powerful thing you can do to add years to your life.

I would add that to be healthier and happier these are a great place to start. 

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Interval Training

Maybe you have heard about interval training. For maximum cardio benefits it is the idea that instead of running or cycling for an hour at a steady pace, you should go for much less time using bursts of high intensity speeds for a only a few minutes. For example cycle at a warm up pace for 3 minutes then push the speed up and cycle to almost your max for a minute or two. Then reduce and repeat. Cut the lower level speed to recover each time then hit it hard.
It is said that too many laps, miles, hours etc, can be so hard on our bodies that you are defeating your purpose and not gaining any benefit. Many runners hit mile after mile, when they are abusing themselves and not gaining any healthy benefit. With less miles and much more intense short bursts of speed they can gain more in overall health and work less.
Its not the amount of  time spent its how you spend it.
My 30-40 minute strength training work out is more intense and does more for the body then multiple set much longer workouts.It is a fact and can save you time and get you more and better results that are visible.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Look and feel younger

who doesn't want to peel back a few years and look younger? No plastic surgery or expensive doctors needed. Just a regular regimen of strength training will do it for you. University researchers reported years ago that the true fountain of youth was to be found in the gym. Check out the older people who regularly work out with intensity and you may notice that they look younger than their cronological age would represent. I man I spoke with at the gym today looks 60..and is 73.
It works. It just takes work.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Keep at IT

Motivation to keep working out when you are older is a tough thing to manage. You need to keep fired up to get through the down days emotionally and the days when other things overwhelm us all.
Think of it this way...if you do work out, even if it is a modified shorter or lighter routine, you will feel so much better afterwards. Your emotional state will be better, your energy in a better place, and your stress level will dissipate.
The thing about stress and emotional issues is that they contribute to inflammation on our systems, one big cause of heart disease, cancer and other problems.
Working out can be a stress and inflammation reliever if not overdone, or abusive.
Studies show that non-professional athletes who work out hours a day may actually be causing inflammation and the related problems.
So get motivated and do it right and DON'T HURT YOURSELF!

Monday, July 9, 2012

If you are over 50 your ability to build muscle is severely hampered by the normal aging process.  The good news is that yes you can build and maintain muscle, but sadly you will find it takes more to achieve...less.
I weigh in at137 pounds. At my heaviest I was 155 -158. I was never a big guy, but I did have some obvious muscle and looked strong. Now I look slim and generally toned, guess I should be happy with that.

At my current body weight I can do a set of 6 or 7 standing alternate dumbbell curls with 40lbs in each hand. This is a fair amount of weight to handle for a smaller guy. Yet this does not build my arm size much, if at all. I do a great arm routine about once or twice a week, one that would grow the biceps size on any younger guy. For me it maintains what I have and keeps my arms toned and strong...but size is not happening.
Part of this is due to my smaller frame, but a lot is to do with my age.

Important for any aging strength training...remember to set REALISTIC goals.
Use creatine and protein to spike up your muscle gaining ability, taking some before and after a workout as directed. But don't hope for any incredible packed solid muscle to cover you like it might have if you were 30 or 40. You can look and feel great but be realistic.

The important thing is to maintain your strength, bone density and energy level. Hobbling around with bent legs and back due to a  lack of maintenance on your only body.... is no way to live.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Go Big or Go Home! P90x at 60.

If you are training and not getting need to make a change. Working out three to five times a week and seeing minimal results is a waste of time. A few years ago at age 60 I saw an infomercial for P90x the DVD training series. I never pay much attention to these kind of TV ads, but this stood out for me. I had a long day in some ministry work and found myself sitting in front of the tube at midnight watching the ad. I bought the series. I had been training regularly, but this was tougher than anything I had done in awhile. It took over an hour a day for 3 months to get through the first round of P90x. I was able to do about 4 or 5 pull ups when I started and made it all the way to 20 by the end. It required pushups of many kinds, stretching and Yoga moves, and a 20 minute ab workout routine. Leg work included wall sits; where you squat with your back against the wall and hold it. Hard..yeah it was hard! Soreness was a regular experience with this program. It was hard to get through, but by my 61 birthday a year later I had gotten through 3 rounds of it. Not to say I am recommending you to go out and start P90x but it is not a bad idea, if you have the time to spend daily on this workout. It doesn't take a lot of gear, only a pullup bar and some dumbbells. Point is if you are stagnant in your routine, this is one way to get your body gaining muscle and losing fat again. P90x works, it is not the only way but it is a way that will work. Next up The Mighty Atom ......junior!

Monday, July 2, 2012

You see many guys at the gym who have no idea what they are doing. Many reps, too many sets, and way too much time on cardio machines. I see them doing 30 minutes or more at a steady pace on the elliptical for intensity just steady work. What a waste of time! You can accomplish more with less. Try a 10 minute cardio with 2 minutes of high intensity alternating with 2 mins of slower pace. Your body will get more benefit from this routine. Current studies show greater effect on the heart and cardio system from short bursts of 2 minutes in high intensity. Same with weight training. High intensity means slow and heavy reps. Not more tha 6 to 8 a set. Maybe one warmup sets prior. This works!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

I N T E N S I T Y !!

if there is one term to describe what makes you stronger it is... INTENSITY.
This should not be a scary word for you. Your level of intensity may be 1 properly performed push up to start. My level is 20 pull-ups done right.
Whatever the intense & energy sucking exercise is for you..that is what you need to focus on.

Suggested workout for true beginners

Sit on a chair, then with hands on hips get up to standing position. Go  back down barely touching the chair. No weights used. If you must sit between repetitions, that's ok. Work towards not sitting at all.
If you can go slower that is better. Breathe and repeat until it starts to hurt. Stop there.

Add to this a floor stretch.  Lay flat on your face. with hands below your shoulders,  curve up to the sphinx pose, keeping your legs on the floor if you have to. Stretch and repeat. Get up on toes with legs off the ground if you can.

That's a start! If it is all you can do then do it!

Suggested workout for advanced training.

Split your routine into 3 x 30 minute sessions. Do one a day for 3 days. Rest on the fourth day. Walk for 30 minutes every day that you can, including the resting day.

Day 1    CHEST/ SHOULDERS/ TRIPCEPS -   Use any machines you are comfortable with. One warm up set with moderate weight doing 6-8 reps. Then one set of 6-8 with you unable to do the last rep. Slow with good breathing on each rep.  Move onto the next machine. Same structure.
You should start every day with ab and core work.
Suggested ab & core work -  Start with leg raises on the floor, sitting with hands on the floor. Bring legs to chest slowly in and out for 20-30 or more reps. This will warm up the core and lower back.
Next move to crunches using the large exercise ball if you have one, or on a machine if available.
Next use dumbells in each hand, bend sideways to stretch and tone the side abs. If you have access to cables, use weights standing sideways, grab and hold weight at waist line. Twist to the side opposite the cable. Turn around and do this for the other side.
Your goal is to work the entire core back to front.

Day 2  Back & Biceps- coming....

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

How do I start?

You start by deciding to start. That's it. You made the decision now you have begun and there will be no looking back! It may become hard to get to your goals, but if you can hang with the program and get beyond 30 days you will start to feel and see a difference.

Make 30 DAYS your GOAL. Get through that and then move on.

More to come.........

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Eugen  Sandow- Famous strong man.

No doubt this man looked great and in his day ( The turn of the 20th Century) Eugen Sandow was the epitome of physical fitness. He was often compared to a Greek Statue and in fact posed for many artists. However in his 50's he died after pushing his car out of the mud. Felled by a stroke. Another proof that you can look good on the outside and be unhealthy inside.
Your goal should be to look good, feel good and BE HEALTHY! Too many of us work on the outside, to make ourselves look better in our view but are not doing the best for our overall health. 
Properly planned training can do it all for you if you accompany it with an outlook for health that works.
If you have come to this page looking for answers you are on the right track. I hope you will find motivation and the means to get your body in the best condition that you can.
This does not mean becoming a body builder, though you can head that way if you choose. It is more for you to learn to improve your condition, maintain better health and feel great.

Improve your quality of Life

What is it that you want to achieve through training? Better health, more energy and a more youthful appearance and outlook all can be yours.
It isn't as hard as it seems.
You need a plan, a goal and the means to get you there.
Stay tuned....