What are the benefits of isometric exercises?

What are isometric exercises?

Before getting into the the benefits of isometric exercises, let’s define what they are. Isometric exercises is a form of low-impact resistance workout. This type of workout helps by promoting gain of muscle or strength. Isometric is a stationary workout, which forms exercises that work the muscles by pushing them against other muscles while remaining fixed or against the muscles, which strengthens the muscle. Thus, the isometric exercises are a stimulus added to stimuli, which force the muscles to respond.

Simple yet efficient

Isometric exercises are about keeping the muscle contracted and still rather than making any movement during the contraction. According to studies, the isometric exercises can give results, such as enlargement of the cells growth, which resizes the muscles, rather then the cells. In other words, one of the main benefits of isometric exercises, is the the muscles fibers building through resistance. According to studies the isometrics also help to gain muscle, while consistency works to augment the muscles relaxation and contraction points.

How to perform isometric exercises?

Isometric training requires that you balance joint spaces amid diverging rows of muscles. Isometric exercises do not require weightlifting, yet they will increase the muscles strength, however if your aim is bodybuilding, you must understand that isometric exercises cannot stand alone to build or sculpt the muscles. In other words, anyone can benefit from isometrics, but you need to workout with other types of exercises incorporated to the isometric routines if you want to sculpt your body the way it meant to be! Weight training when employed with isometrics can help you to sculpt the muscles sooner. Yet, at what time you combine isometrics with progressive resistance training, thus the chances of restoring the body’s natural physique increases.

Anyone can benefit from isometric workout
Anyone can benefit from isometrics

When should I do it during my Fitness session?

One of the golden rules of thumb while isometric training along with training in other areas is to apply flexor isometric exercises after working out in your normal routine. In other words, at what time you finish lifting weights start the flex isometric routine. We bodybuilders incorporate this routine in weightlifting, which claims state the builders muscles improved in vascularity and overall muscle detail.

In a nutshell, what are the main benefits of an isometric training?

  • Fast strength building
  • Joints protection
  • Fat burning
  • Lowering blood pressure
  • Low risks of injuries
  • Becoming fast and explosive
  • Improvement of the posture
  • Overcoming a plateau
Resistance bands can be a great addition to isometric exercises
Resistance bands can be a great addition to isometric exercises

In addition, you can easily modulate the level of difficulty to meet your needs and experience.

Simply by extending the duration of the contraction. To help you perform flex isometrics we can consider a few exercises. Again, always warm up and stretch before starting a full-scale workout.

  • Flex kicks is the process of seating on the floor, while reading to flex the legs. As you rest on the floor, use your hands, lower arms, and buttocks to support your weight. Once in position, kick with the knees bent, kicking up high, and out, spreading the legs. Next, bring the legs inward, repeat and then inward again.
  • The side flutter kicks are another type of isometric exercise. While performing the tactic kick the legs in a stride, while position self on the floor, and speedily kick back, and to the sides while pointing your toes, and kicking wide.
  • Single flex kicks include positioning self in the floor, while balancing the body with the buttocks and hands behind the back, at the same time kicking the right leg upward while learning back. Repeat the steps on both legs.
  • Leg flexes include sitting on the floor with the elbows and knees bended upward, and the legs flexing. Now, straighten the legs and arms, while extending the arms over the head bending the elbows. And then extending upward as far as you can while pointing the toes.
  • The flex and hold incorporates the point and hold workout. Sit in the floor in a comfortable position. Now, point the toes forward as you face down with the head touching the knees and the hands grasp about the feet. Count to eight, start the flex and hold. Thus, flexing the toes backward while holding in position. The head show go center down while the points of the fingers touch the toes. Count to six and release.

Should I do isometric exercises?

Various other types of isometric flexes are available; thus it takes you to learn and apply. Indeed, when it comes to fitness you must try, try and try in order to find what work the best for you. Also, if you want to progress you need a variety of training. I am not just talking about changing weight, increasing your reps, varying sets or exercises… but changing training techniques. This means completely different techniques, from the classical workout with dumbbells and weights. Whether you’ve just had injury or you’re simply want to vary your fitness routine, if you intend to do a complete isometric session, you should just use it like any regular strength training. At this end of the day, by activating nearly all the available motor units, isometrics are simple and efficient forms of workouts.

Identifying your Fitness goals is the key

Yet if you are new to workout, I recommend you to identify your goals, whether it is building lean muscle, losing belly fat etc. and learn all you can before starting a workout. Especially because, like I just mentioned earlier, the limits of isometric workout is that they cannot stand alone to build or sculpt the muscles.

Ben – Iron Fit Food
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Is soreness a good thing?

As a matter of fact, soreness means that something happened during your training

As a matter of fact, soreness means that something happened during your training and it is most of the time a good sign. On an average, soreness happens to everybody, but more often to the beginners (or to those who don’t train regularly) than to the neophytes or the seasoned athletes. It also simply happens to the muscular groups that we don’t target often. The best example is to look at those who are doing legs once in a while and end up not being able to walk or seat properly after their legs workout session. Therefore, once we are training regularly, soreness tends to appear less often as our muscles got used to the intensity of the exercises. Many people worry when they feel soreness, especially when it comes 24h to 72h after the workout. Actually, soreness is just constituted by microscopic injuries or tears of the muscles, caused by the intensity of the flexion during the workout. It comes along with an inflammation that makes it painful and can also lead to an overall body weakness.

So why is it a good thing?

So why is it a good thing? Simply because when you are training you are seeking the hypertrophy (increase in muscle size and shape) of your muscles. This hypertrophy is created by the repeated flexion of the muscular group you are targeting that, technically, is damaging your muscular cells which, as an ultimate result, will give you the fit shape and size you are looking for. In other words, your workout is stressing your muscles and sorness is a natural reaction to this stress. Good soreness means good workout! 

How to quicly recover from soreness?

There are several ways to recover quickly from the soreness:

  • Sleeping
  • Salt bath
  • Taking supplements: Protein Bars (Iron Fit Protein Bars are all natural and rich in BCAA and Glutamine, helping the recovery), protein powder, BCAA, creatine etc…
  • Drinking more water
  • Stretching
  • Massaging

How about the soreness recovery time?

As previously said, the recovery time from soreness will depend on several factors such as

  • the nutrition
  • the workout frequency
  • the wourkout intensity 
  • the workout volume
  • the sleeping time
  • the emotional stress
  • and so on.

At the end of the day, no matter how painful or how long your soreness will last for, just embrace it as a sign that you did your job at the gym and always remember: “no pain, no gain”.

Ben – Iron Fit Food
www.ironfitfood.com
instagram: ironfitfood

How can I train if I am traveling regularly?

Body weight workout routines are one of the keys for training when you travel

I often hear people telling me that they can’t be fit just because they are constantly traveling around. Well, when we travel, we all agreed it is not convenient to carry in our luggage some dumbbells and barbells. However, we can tailor our very own body weight workout routines. In that case it is important to master some basic exercises that you can do anywhere such as the planks, body weight squats, mountain climber, lunge, triceps dips, flutter kick, push-ups etc… If you want to go furthermore with your training and you think body weight exercises are too limited in term of variety and results, then I suggest you to buy a packable workout gear such as a resistance bands, a skipping rope, a foam roller or even a sling trainer (e.g. TRX), this kind of equipment is light, easy to carry on, easy to use and it can be installed quickly everywhere on the doors, walls etc…

Chosing a hotel with Fitness Facilities

When you are traveling, the best solution is definitely to go to a hotel with a fitness facility, so before booking any room always have a look at the list of the facilities of your hotel. And if your hotel don’t have any fitness facility? Then you can always search on the internet (e.g. Google map) for the closest gym to your hotel. So don’t let a simply nasty trip being an excuse to stop your training, you have to be motivated more than ever, especially since traveling can also mess up with your nutrition and your sleep habits, both necessary for a good recovery, maintaining your muscular mass burning fat and so on.

What about the nutrition?

And regarding the nutrition? As stated above, traveling can also mess up with your nutrition, too much carbs, not enough protein, tiny portions and late meals. One of the solution is to take supplements. There is several supplements available on the markets, all made for different purposes, fat burning, bulking up, sleeping etc…. However, the most important thing is to make sure that your intake of protein is high enough. Please see more details and figures about the daily protein intakes in the website of the National Center for Biotechnology Information here. To make it simple I suggest your daily protein intake to be of 2g of protein per kg of body weight in order to maintain your muscular mass. It is often a hard task when we travel and this is the reason why protein bars such as the Iron Fit Food bars are an outstanding solution. If your aim is to low down your carbs intake then you will go for the Performance bars, if your aim is to bulk up you will go for the Brownies or the Energy, if you are in between and need an all-rounder then you will go for the Original bars. Anyway, always keep in mind that being fit requires discipline and motivation, it is like anything else in life, just a matter of priority.

 

Ben – Iron Fit Food
www.ironfitfood.com
instagram: ironfitfood

Could you get slimmer by doing crunch exercise?

Could you get slimmer by doing crunch exercise?

When I go to the gym I am strike by the amount of people who are spending some 10min or more just doing stomach crunch. Many of them think that they will get slimmer or perhaps get “the six pack” should I say, by hammering their stomach for several minutes in a row. Well, I will never say it enough, we cannot target the fat loss!

So just doing crunch exercise in order to burn out the intramuscular abdominal fat will not bring you any kind of six pack. By the way the scientific team from the University of Virginia recently discovered that we would have to do some 250,000 crunches to burn some 450g of fat. This is the equivalent of doing 100 crunches per day for 7 days.

We also know that to burn fat cardio is a good solution however if you go for a long cardio, such as more than 10 minutes, you take the risk to also lose some muscular mass on the way. Therefore, one of the method I suggest is to work out all your muscles especially the big muscle groups (chest, legs…) and the lower back muscles because they are the muscular group which burn the most calories. And regarding cardio? Well I suggest you to go for a daily cardio of 10 minutes maximum using bicycle or elliptical. Yes, you heard it, 10 minutes maximum, I personally go for 7 minutes sharp and 5 to 6 days per week. That way it will strip of the fat and prevent the lactic acids to make you losing that precious muscular mass.

Finally, don’t forget that doing crunch is a good way to strengthen your abdominal muscles and to give them a nice shape. If you want to have sharp and fit abs, then I suggest you a combination of cardio, diet and abdominal exercise. The nutrition is also important because abs are muscles. So keep in mind that to maintain your muscular mass you need about 2g of protein per kg of body weight and per day. The Iron Fit Food products are here to help you reach that goal: http://www.ironfitfood.com/shop/

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Reach your goals and push up your limits with Iron Fit Food

 

Ben – Iron Fit Food
www.ironfitfood.com
instagram: ironfitfood