Thursday, January 12, 2006

Comprehensive Beginning Weight Training Program

Self-Assessment: Evaluations
Before embarking on your fitness quest, find out if you’re a “high risk” candidate for training. A good personal trainer, for instance, would ask you these questions:
· Is your blood pressure greater than or equal to 160/90?
· Is your total cholesterol greater or equal to 240?
· Do you smoke?
· Do you have diabetes?
· Do you have a family history of heart disease?
· Do you have a family history of Cancer?
· Do you live a sedentary lifestyle?
· Are you over 50? (for females, for men it’s over 40)
· Are you pregnant?
· Are you on medications?
· Is your body fat over 30 percent? (for females, for men it’s over 25)
· Do you have a known disease?
· Do you have an old or recent injuries?
If you answered yes to two or more of the above questions, the American College of Sports Medicine recommends that you get your doctor’s clearance before starting.

Measurements
Find out your measurements and percentage of body fat. This gives you a more accurate picture of your body composition than just weighing in. Once you start toning up and shedding fat, body weight can often increase, since muscle weighs more than fat, and this can mislead you into thinking you’re not making progress when you are.
Start with these measurements, which you can update every 6 weeks to three months to chart progress:
· Date:
· Body Weight:
· % Body fat:

Measurements:
· Shoulders (from middle of the deltoid, across the back):
· Chest (pectoral, just above the breasts):
· Waist (at the belly button):
· Hips (at the hip bone):
· Buttocks (the biggest part, keep feet together):
· Thigh (uppermost section):
· Calves (the biggest part):
· Biceps (the biggest part):

Muscle Checklist
Next, try to flex each muscle (hardening and softening.) Do this as if you were showing off your biceps. Bend or straighten appropriate limbs to contract the muscles. The ones that fail to take your orders are the one that probably need your most attention.

What muscles fail to harden at your command?

Shoulders
Chest
Back (lats)
Lower back

Biceps
Triceps
Abs
Buttocks

Quads
Hamstrings
Inner Thigh
Calves

Do you have any old or current injuries that require nurturing and respect?
· Where?
· What sorts of physical activities do you do now? (Either athletic or not)
· What body parts or muscles do those activities use most?
· What parts, therefore, do you use least?
· What needs more attention?
Use your weak and neglected areas as focal points for training. Don’t simply start by favoring what you already do well. Fill in the missing pieces of your puzzle and a weak muscle can soon become a strong point.

For instance:
· If you’re a runner-walker, chances are good you only work the lower half of your body.
Add upper body strengthening to address neglected muscles. You might even need supplemental leg training to improve leg strength and endurance. Especially hamstring and quads for hip and knee stability. To sculpt buttocks, add exercises for that area and sprint up hills to improve both your shape and aerobic capacity. If you suffer from overuse injuries from running, run in both deep and shallow water. If it’s a serious injury, start in deep and work into progressively shallower water, where you weight more, so you gradually overload muscles and joints.

Posture
Next, try to evaluate your postural weaknesses and imbalances in a detached, preferably nonjudgmental way. If you can’t do this evaluation yourself, have someone snap a photo of you from front, back and sides, or have them do the assessment. Draw two bodies, one straight on and one in profile. Mark each area of imbalance with an X and R or L. for right or left.

Although all of the above details can touch at the heart of paranoia and make the head reel with self-judgment, the facts give you a place to begin. It takes a certain type of courage to embrace the less glamorous side of reality, but all improvements spring from there.
· Do you tilt your head to one side?
(Do you cradle a phone on your neck?)

· Is one shoulder higher than the other?
(Do you always carry a bag on the same side?)

· Do you tend to slump forward?
(Do you sit at a desk all day?)

· Does your chest sink in?
· Do you strain your neck forward when you read or write?
· Do you have a pronounced arch in your lower back (lordosis)?
· Do you have scoliosis?
· Do you know which sides of the spine are over-stretched or contracted, due to scoliosis?
· Is on leg longer than the other? Which one?
· Do you lean into one hip?
· Do your knees bow out or knock together?
· Do you lock your knees when standing?
· Do you wear high heals much of the time?
(If so, your Achilles tendons could become tight and “shortened.”)

· Do your feet roll in or out?
(Check the wear on the soles of your shoes to see.)

Some Postural Fixes
· Tilt head to one side
Stretch neck muscles on the “shorter side” and try to carry head straight

· Shoulders slump forward
Strengthen the “rear” part of the shoulder and upper back
· Arched lower back (lordosis) or weakness in lower back and the abdominals
Strengthen abdominals
Stretch (and strengthen) lower back muscles
Strengthen (and stretch) weak hamstrings
“Soften” locked knees
Lengthen and increase mobility of hip flexors with hip flexor stretches
Incorporate balance exercises (such as standing on one leg) to improve torso stabilizing muscles, posture and alignment

· Flat lower back with shoulders rounded forward (Kyphosis)
Strengthen rear shoulder and upper back muscles to correct slumping
Strengthen chest to open posture
Stretch (and strengthen) tight hamstrings
Strengthen hip flexors while maintaining flexibility in that muscle

· Feet rolling in or out
Possible candidate for orthotics (corrective inserts for shoes), particularly if you run or do any type of impact exercise, which would exacerbate the problem. Try focusing on centering your weight through the whole foot.

· Tight Achilles tendons
Try walking barefoot in sand. Alternatively, stretch your Achilles tendons by standing on stairs, lowering one heel and slightly bending the knee on that leg at the same time.

· To break the habit of always carrying a bag on one side
Switch sides or carry a back pack
· To minimize neck pain
Make sure you don’t cradle the phone in your neck. Get a headset or shoulder brace. Try a speaker phone

· If you slump at a desk all day
Treat yourself to an ergonomic chair with good lower back support

Workout 1
Here’s the resistance regimen. You may want to buy a yoga or workout mat on which to perform these exercises as most of them have you lying or kneeling on the floor. Workout 1 should be performed every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday for three weeks. On the forth week increase the number of sets to three per movement and continue for an additional three weeks. At the end of this six week period most of the soreness should be gone and replaced by the normal temporary muscle ache which often accompanies resistance training. Now you are ready to add weights. I want you to go to your local sporting goods store and buy yourself a pair of 10-25 pound dumbbells, which ever weight feels the best to you. Remember, though, that you want it to be challenging and remain challenging for some time so don’t get the light ones trying to take the easy way out, you’re only cheating yourself. Now do the same exercises, using the dumbbells, for three weeks at two sets per exercise, then another three weeks at three sets per exercise. Also when adding the dumbbells, reduce all reps by five. You can add them back later, optionally, for added intensity.

Following these three months on the Comprehensive Beginning Weight Training Workout 1 you will be ready for one of three things:
1. You’ll want to move on to more challenging resistance exercises such as those found at a commercial gym.
2. You will want to continue more of the same but change up the movements to keep the improvements coming and keep it from getting boring.
3. Or you will be ready to simply add more sets per body part and make your body continue to adapt by changing things up and increasing the muscle load.

For the first option, you will need to contact me and I’ll set up a regimen planned around a commercial gyms equipment and your personal goals. For the second option, I will include an alternate workout regimen which can be used to “cycle” into your regimen as you see fit. Lastly, for the third option I will include such a regimen you can use to change things up and keep the results rolling.

My suggestion is to choose option 2 and complete it per the instructions below, then move on to option three. Following the completion of all three you can either start the cycle over or opt for alternative number one and head out to the commercial gym.

Muscle Group(s)
Exercise
Sets
Reps

Inner Thighs, Glutes
Plié Squat
2
15

Quads, Glutes
Stationary Lunge
2
15

Hip Flexor
Front Leg Raise
2
15

Glutes, Hams
Hip Thrust
2
15

Calves
Standing Calf Raise
2
15

Upper Back
Bent-over Row
2
15

Lower Back
Back Extension
2
15

Upper-ab region
Crunch*
2
30

Lower-ab Region
Reverse Crunch*
2
30

Chest, Delts, Tris
Push-Up
2
15

Deltoids
Over-head Press
2
15

Triceps
Over-head Extension
2
15

Biceps
Alternate Curl
2
15

*Alternate Crunch with Reverse Crunch every other workout.
(Note) Your goal should be to only rest for about 60-90 seconds between exercises. Any more and your muscles will start to get cold.

Well that plan looks great on paper, but how do you actually do these crazy exercises?
Lets dive in…

Plie Squat
Start Position:
Stand with your feet wider than shoulder-width apart and turn your toes out.
Execution:
With your torso up-right, bend your knees until your thighs are parallel to the floor. As you push back up, squeeze your glutes. Your knees shouldn’t extend past your toes. Hold a dumbbell in front of you for added resistance.

Stationary Lunge
Start Position:
You’ll need to experiment with foot spacing, but when you bring your right leg forward, your weight should be evenly distributed between your feet. Your back leg should rest on your toes.
Execution:
Stride forward with your right leg, bending your right knee to create about a 90-degree angle between your upper and lower leg. Try to lower your back knee close to (not touching) the floor, then come back up without changing your foot position. Squeeze your glutes and quads as you come up. Do all reps on one side, then switch. To add resistance, hold dumbbells at your sides.

Front Leg Raise
Start Position:
Lye on your back with your feet together and your hands palm down on the floor either next to your body or tucked slightly under your glutes.
Execution:
Keeping your upper body rigid and pressed against the floor, raise your legs (slight bend in the knees*) up to just short of 90 degrees (between 60 and 80 degrees).
* “Slightly Bent” simply means don’t keep your knees locked as this is bad for the delicate, complex knee joint and could lead to pain and possible injury.

Hip Thrust
Starting Position:
Lye on your back hands comfortably at your sides, palms down, or on your hips and with your legs bent and feet on the ground.
Execution:
Keeping your upper body stiff and straight thrust your hips up toward the ceiling. You should be pivoting from your shoulders so that only your head/shoulders and feet are touching the ground. Your hands should stabilize you but not help with the movement. At the top squeeze your hamstrings and hold before lowering slowly to the starting position.
Variation:
Execute as above only now place your feet up on the edge of a chair, bench or coffee table.

Standing Calf Raise
Start Position:
You can do these off a step, with either your own body weight or holding dumbbells for added resistance. The balls of your feet should rest on the step, and your heels should hang off enough to allow a full range of motion.
Execution:
Simply rise up on the balls of your feet, raising and lowering your heels, squeezing your calves at the top. You should lower your heels all the way down until you can’t stretch any further. (These are great for your achilles tendon.

Bent-over Row
Start Position:
Standing bent at the hips (torso parallel with the floor), feet shoulder width apart and knees slightly bent. Hands hanging straight down toward the floor.
Execution:
Keeping your torso still raise your elbows toward the ceiling squeezing your shoulder blades together. Your elbows and wrists should stay in one plane with your shoulders, and your knuckles should still be pointed at the floor. Squeeze and hold at the top before slowing lowering back to the starting position. Keep your eyes focused on one spot throughout the set so that your head is not moving around.

Back Extension
Start position:
Standing bent at the hips (torso parallel with the floor), feet shoulder width apart and knees slightly bent. Your hands can, optionally, be on your hips, crossed over your chest, or at your temples. (It is utterly important to keep the natural arch in your back and not allow it to slouch or “round over.”) Your shoulders should be back and your chest out.
Execution:
Simply stand up to the erect position squeezing your lower back and thrusting your pelvis forward at the top.

Crunch
Start Position:
Lie face up with your knees bent, feet on the floor and your hands either loosely grasping your head, or by your temples.
Execution:
Curl up a few inches, bringing your shoulder blades just off the floor. When you come down, stop just short of the fully resting position at the bottom. It helps to not think of the movement as purely up and down, but rather rolling your shoulders up and towards your hips.

Reverse Crunch
Start Position:
Lie face up with your knees and hips bent at 90-degrees and your feet in the air. Place your hands at your sides.
Execution:
Squeeze your abs in, then lift your glutes and hips off the floor by bringing your knees over your chest. Return to the start position in a controlled movement.

Push-up
Start Position:
Support your weight on your hands and knees and cross your ankles. Space your hands about shoulder-distance apart, fingers facing forward. Keep y9our abs in, maintain the natural arch of your back and look straight ahead.
Execution:
As you lower your upper body, try to imagine yourself as a lever; only your arms and elbows should be moving. Shoot for as many reps as you can do with good form. If you can do 20 on your knees, on your next set try to do a few full-body push-ups, then continue on your knees.

Over-head Press
Start Position:
Sitting in a chair, preferably with back support, grasp a pair of dumbbells and bend your elbows so that your upper arms are parallel to the floor, palms facing forward.
Execution:
With your chest out, press the weights up in an arc, squeezing your shoulders, then lower to the start position in a controlled movement. Don’t let the dumbbells touch at the top. For beginners, perform the movement the same as above, just pretend you are holding a pair of dumbbells and concentrate on squeezing your shoulders at the top of the movement.

Over-head Extension
Start Position:
Sitting in a chair, preferably with back support, grasp a pair of dumbbells and bend your elbows and raise your arms above your head so that your lower, or fore arms, are parallel to the floor, palms facing toward each other.
Execution:
Keeping everything else still, extend your hands up toward the ceiling squeezing the backs of your arms (triceps). Squeeze and hold in the (elbow) ”locked” position before lowering slowly back to the start position.

Alternate Curl
Start Position:
Grasp a pair of dumbbells with you palms facing in, feet together and knees slightly bent. Your elbows should remain fairly close to your sides throughout.
Execution:
Curl your left arm up (trying not to move your elbow outward or forward.) As you arm comes up, turn your wrist so that your palm faces up at the top of the movement. (This is called supination.) Squeeze your biceps at the top, then lower the weight and reverse the wrist twist. Repeat with your right arm and continue alternating.

Workout 2 (option 2)
Workout 2 should be performed every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday for three weeks. On the forth week increase the number of sets to three per movement and continue for an additional three weeks. At the end of this six week period you are ready to add weights. Now do the same exercises, using the dumbbells, for three weeks at two sets per exercise, then another three weeks at three sets per exercise. Also when adding the dumbbells, reduce all reps by five. You can add them back later, optionally, for added intensity.

Muscle Group(s)
Exercise
Sets
Reps

Quads, Glutes
Alternating Lunge
2
15

Outer Thigh, Hip Flexor
Standing Lateral Leg Raise
2
15

Glutes, Hams
Standing Donkey Kick
2
15

Hamstrings
Butt Kick
2
15

Calves
Standing Calf Raise
2
15

Upper Back
Bent-over Flye
2
15

Lower Back
Back Extension
2
15

Upper-ab region
Crunch*
2
30

Lower-ab Region
Reverse Crunch*
2
30

Chest, Delts, Tris
Chair Push-Up
2
15

Deltoids
Lateral Raise
2
15

Triceps
Kick-Back
2
15

Biceps
Hammer Curl
2
15

Here’s the break-down…

Alternating Lunge
This is performed much the same as the stationary lunge except now you are going to alternate between your right and left leg every other repetition. So now you will lunge with your right leg, then stand back up to erect, lunge with your left leg, stand back up to erect, lunge with your right leg, etc. until you have finished all your reps.

Standing Lateral Leg Raise
Start Position:
Stand near a wall, chair, table, or something to hold on to that will stabilize your balance. Stand with your feet together, head up, and chest out.
Execution:
Keeping your upper body stationary, lift the outside leg straight out and up until you can’t lift it any further (about 45 degrees), then slowly lower it just short of touching the ground. Remember to squeeze at the top of the movement. You should feel it on the outer thigh near your hip.
Variation:
Beginners may optionally bend the knees 90 degrees if unable to complete the set. Also, you can use this technique at the end of a set to extend it to or beyond failure for increased intensity.

Standing Donkey Kick
Start Position:
Stand facing a wall, feet comfortably apart. You should be just short of an arms length from the wall. Place your hands on the wall at about shoulder level and lean your weight into the wall for support.
Execution:
Keeping the natural arch in your back, not letting it sag or round over, kick your heel back and up to the ceiling. Hold and squeeze your glutes at the top then slowly lower back to the start position (just short of touching the floor). Your upper body should move very little in this movement, and you should really strive to get some height in your heel kick. Try to kick the ceiling.
Variation:
You can also do these off the end of a bench, table, or bed for added support. In which case you can do one side then the other, alternate legs, or do both at the same time. This option also lends itself nicely to adding weight by placing a dumbbell between the feet and doing both legs at the same time.

Butt Kick
Starting Position:
Stand comfortably with feet apart.
Execution:
This is exactly what it sounds like. Alternately kick your heels up to your butt. You should be trying to get your heel to actually contact your glutes. Squeeze your hamstrings hard at the top.
Standing Calf Raise
Performed same as above.

Bent-Over Flye
Starting position:
Same as for the Bent-Over Row
Execution:
Nearly the same as for the Bent-Over Row. Instead of raising your elbows toward the ceiling, keep a constant bend in your elbows (about ten degrees) and raise your wrists toward the ceiling (palms down) pivoting from the shoulder. Squeeze your shoulder blades together at the top. Stop when the wrists are level with your shoulders, then lower back to just short of the bottom position. Your wrists, elbows, and shoulders should all be in one plane.

Back Extension
Performed same as above.

Crunch
Performed same as above.

Reverse Crunch
Performed same as above.

Chair Push-Up
Only move on to this advancement if you were doing regular push ups in workout 1. If not, then just start doing regular push ups in place of these.
Start Position:
Same as regular push ups except now your feet are up on a chair, bench, or coffee table.
Execution:
Same as a regular push up.

Lateral Raise
Start Position:
Sitting erect with your back supported, or standing with your feet shoulder width apart, hands at your sides, palms facing in.
Execution:
Raise your wrists up toward the ceiling until they are level with your shoulders. Squeeze your deltoids at the top and hold momentarily before lowering back down just short of the bottom position. Your elbows should hold a constant bend of about ten degrees. Be sure the backs of your wrists are toward the ceiling and lead the motion with your elbows. Imagine trying to touch the ceiling with your elbows, however the elbow joint should remain fixed throughout the movement.

Kick Back
Start Position:
Standing slightly bent over with feet about shoulder width apart and left hand supported on knee. Your upper right arm should be parallel to and pressed tightly against your upper body with a 90 degree bend in the elbow, palm in.
Execution:
With out moving anything else, extend your lower arm back straightening it out and squeezing your triceps at the end of the range of motion. Hold momentarily, then slowly return back to the start position.

Hammer Curl
This is performed exactly the same as the Alternating Curl except that you turn your wrist 90 degrees so that your palms are facing each other.


Workout 3 (option 3)
Workout 3 should be performed every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday for three weeks. On the forth week increase the number of sets to three per movement and continue for an additional three weeks. At the end of this six week period you are ready to add weights. Now do the same exercises, using the dumbbells, for three weeks at two sets per exercise, then another three weeks at three sets per exercise. Also when adding the dumbbells, reduce all reps by five. You can add them back later, optionally, for added intensity.

Monday
Muscle Group(s)
Exercise
Sets
Reps

Chest
Push-Up
2
15

Chest
Dumbbell Flye
2
15

Lower Back
Back Extension
2
15

Upper Back
Bent-Over Row (wide)
2
15

Upper Back
Bent-Over Row (narrow)
2
15

Wednesday
Muscle Group(s)
Exercise
Sets
Reps

Delts/Traps
Upright Row
2
15

Delts/Traps
Lateral Raise
2
15

Biceps
Alternating DB Curl
2
15

Biceps
Concentration Curl
2
15

Triceps
Bench Dip
2
15

Triceps
Over-head Extension
2
15

Forearm/Biceps
Reverse Curl
2
15

Friday
Muscle Group(s)
Exercise
Sets
Reps

Quads/Glutes
Chair Squats
2
15

Quads/Glutes
Leg Extension
2
15

Hams/Glutes
Hip Thrust
2
15

Hams/Glutes
Lying Leg Curl
2
15

Calves
Standing Calf Raise
2
15

Calves
Toe Jump
2
15

Abdominals
Crunch
2
30

Abdominals
Leg Raise/Thrust
2
30

Here’s the break-down for this one…

Push-Up
Performed same as above.

Dumbbell Flye
Start Position:
Lying on your back on the floor or, preferably, on a bench, arms extended straight up over your chest with your palms in. Your elbows should maintain a slight but constant bend through out this movement. In other words, don’t lock your elbows out.
Execution:
Slowly lower your wrists toward the floor in an arc motion until they are about level with your torso, or until you feel a good stretch in your chest muscle, which ever comes first. Reverse the movement and squeeze your chest together, pulling your wrists back up to the start position without actually touching at the top.

Back Extension
Performed same as above.

Bent-Over Row (Wide)
Performed same as above.

Bent-Over Row (Narrow)
Start Position:
Foot and body position is the same as the Bent-Over Row (wide). The difference comes in arm position and motion, and therefore muscle group recruitment. Your arms should be hanging naturally straight down from the shoulder, palms in.
Execution:
In a sharp controlled manner, drive your elbows upward and back, dragging your arm along side your body. Squeeze your back at the top of the motion and hold briefly. Slowly lower back to the start position. Alternate arms until set is complete.

Upright Row
Start Position:
Stand upright with feet at shoulder width, chest out and shoulders back. Hands hanging naturally at your thighs, palms in.
Execution:
In a sharp controlled manner, drive your elbows upward and outward allowing your elbows to bend and hands to continue pointing toward the floor until your hands are between your chest and chin. Squeeze your shoulders at the top of the motion and hold briefly. Slowly lower back to the start position.

Lateral Raise
Performed same as above.

Alternating Curl
Performed same as above.

Concentration Curl
Start Position:
Sit with your feet wide apart. Place the back of your elbow on the inside of your thigh near the knee with your arm extended straight and palm facing up. Your shoulder and elbow should form a line perpendicular to the floor.
Execution:
In a sharp controlled manner “Curl” your palm upward toward your shoulder until they almost touch. Squeeze your biceps at the top of the motion and hold briefly. Your upper arm should continue to form a line perpendicular to the floor throughout the motion. Slowly lower back to the start position.

Bench Dip
Start Position:
Sit on the edge of a chair or bench grasping the edge with your hands. Your legs should be extended straight forward with your feet together. Move your rear forward off the edge of the chair or bench and lower your body down the front side of the chair or bench until your upper and lower arm forms a ninety degree angle.
Execution:
In a sharp controlled manner raise your body upward until your arm is once again straight. Squeeze your Triceps at the top of the motion and hold briefly. Slowly lower back to the start position.

Over-Head Extension
Start Position:
Sit in a chair or bench with back support. With your back pressed firmly against the backrest, raise your arms directly overhead with hands pointed toward the ceiling and bend your elbows until your upper and lower arms form a ninety degree angle, palms up.
Execution:
In a sharp controlled manner extend your lower arms upward toward the ceiling keeping your upper arms perpendicular to the floor and being careful not to move your elbows forward, backward, or to the side throughout the motion. Squeeze your triceps at the top of the movement and hold briefly. Slowly lower back to the start position.

Reverse Curl
Performed the same as the Alternate Curl and Hammer Curl with the exception that the palms should face the floor throughout. (Pronated)

Chair Squat
Start Position:
Stand in front of a chair or bench with your feet shoulder width apart, toes pointed slightly outward.
Execution:
Bend at your knees and hips as if to sit on the chair or bench. Lower your body until your buttocks barely touch the surface of the chair or bench. Do not sit down. Immediately reverse direction and, in a sharp controlled manner, stand back up squeezing your thighs at the top of the motion and hold briefly.

Leg Extension
Start Position:
Sit in a chair or on a bench grasping the seat with your hands to anchor you.
Execution:
Keeping your body still, in a sharp controlled manner extend your knees forward until your feet are level with your upper legs. Squeeze your thighs at the top of the motion and hold briefly. Slowly lower back to the start position.

Hip Thrust
Performed same as above.

Lying Leg Curl
Start Position:
Lye on your stomach, on the floor or a bench,
Execution:
In a sharp controlled manner, bend you leg at the knee and raise your foot until your leg forms a ninety degree angle. Squeeze your thigh at the top of the motion and hold briefly. Be sure your hip and upper leg does not lose contact with the floor or bench throughout the range of motion. Your hips and buttocks should remain completely still throughout the motion. Slowly lower back to the start position.

Standing Calf Raise
Performed same as above.

Toe Jump
Start Position:
Stand with feet shoulder width apart with your weight on the balls of your feet and heels lightly touching the floor.
Execution:
Explosively push off the balls of your feet and toes upward as hard as possible and try to jump in the air using only the power of your calves.

Crunch
Performed same as above.

Leg Raise/Thrust
Performed the same as Leg Raise above with the exception that at the top of the motion you then Thrust your feet straight upward toward the ceiling raising your hips upward off the floor as far as possible.

3 Comments:

At 12:08 PM, Blogger Child of a Thoughtless Mind said...

A pound of muscle and a pound of fat weigh the same. Why do people keep perpetuating this fallacy?

 
At 1:08 PM, Blogger Musings of a Demented Mind said...

I agree. A pound of anything weighs the same as a pound of anything else, by nature of the law of gravity. However, my exact phrase was: "Once you start toning up and shedding fat, body weight can often increase, since muscle weighs more than fat, and this can mislead you into thinking you’re not making progress when you are."

I made no reference to the weight of fat vs. the weight of muscle. Muscle does indeed weigh more than fat. A liter of muscle weighs more than a liter of fat. I was referring to volume. A pound of muscle is 18% smaller, by volume, than a pound of fat. Therefore if a volume of space once occupied by fat is now occupied by the same volume of muscle, the weight of the individual will increase. Thereby confusing a person who has been exercising intensely and sees no apparent changes in overall size or girth, in the mirror or clothing, but weighs MORE on the scale.
Point being the bathroom, or any other weight scale, is NOT a good indicator of progress!
So you see it is NOT false that muscle does indeed weigh more than fat, when volume is equal. It is simply that people seem to have a difficult time with the concept of volume when referring to the two. I suppose, perhaps, it's a bit of a paradigm shift for many people to think of it in these terms.
Lesson learned, I will henceforth specifically explain the volume concept when referring to this particular fact of body composition.

 
At 3:46 PM, Blogger Child of a Thoughtless Mind said...

You could have just said that muscle is denser than fat and therefore, takes up less space.

I guess I'll have to get accustomed to your verbosity.

 

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