Exercise is so very important to the life you live.
A happy and joyful life will include exercise that keeps you strong, healthy, and full of energy.
I could not imagine my life without physical exercise.
This page has been written so you fully understand every type of exercise available and the benefits of each type.
The right types of exercise will allow you to build muscle mass, burn fat, build strength, build power, increase flexibility, and much more.
You'll see the exact type of exercise recommended by Weight Lifting Complete.
FitnessMany people search for fitness in their quest for weight loss, fat loss, or to build muscle.
Fitness is getting in shape and that depends on exercise. Exercise is behind the goal of becoming more physically fit.
Exercising is something many people want to undertake but they don't know where to start because there is a HUGE amount of information and especially mis-information on fitness.
Here's my first warning to you: You don't need to purchase anything to get started with the correct exercise.
And you especially don't need supplements or pre-packaged foods to get results from exercise.
Health and Fitness
Your health is highly important and is so important that I can't truly stress that enough.
Without good health, you aren't able to live a truly happy and joyful life. With bad health comes pain and suffering. No one wants that.
Exercise is the key to improving your health and fitness.
But that's not all. Your diet (the normal foods you eat) plays a HUGE role in your health and fitness.
Here's the truth: if you don't eat healthy foods all the time, you will have trouble improving your health and becoming more fit.
Food plays a vital role in your workouts, your energy levels, the health of your mind, stress levels, and much more.
When you combine all the right types of exercise with the right foods in your diet, the results are very powerful. You will see a vast improvement in your health and fitness.
Fitness EquipmentYou won't need a huge amount of fitness equipment to begin exercising.
For instance, I started weight lifting in the year 2000 with a single pair of adjustable dumbbells from Wal-Mart.
From that point on, I was able to increase my fitness levels using the single pair of dumbbells.
I also was able to walk and run outside and use my trusty old jump rope. For less than $50, I had all the fitness equipment I needed to get started working out.
And that's one of the keys: to simply get started. Everything doesn't have to be perfect and in place to get started. I see too many people waiting to start until they get everything they need.
Just Get Started With Exercise
Instead, get up and get moving. That's the best way to get started.
From that point on, you can begin adding fitness equipment to your home gym. I highly recommend a home gym.
Find a good spot in your home or garage (watch out for low temperatures in the Winter) and start adding equipment slowly over the years.
For weight lifting, go with free weights like barbells and dumbbells. A power rack forms the center piece of your home gym if you have the space.
Then add a couple of cardio machines like the treadmill and elliptical machine.
That's all you need. No fancy weight machines or Bowflex machines are needed. Just simple barbells, dumbbells, and weight plates.
Fitness ProgramThe most important thing you can do in your life in terms of a fitness program is to start moving more often throughout the day.
If you're like me and have to sit much of the day to perform your job, it's highly important that you get up often and take breaks from sitting. Go for a short walk around your work facility.
This movement helps you to think better and to perform better at your job. It's HIGHLY important that you do this!
Did you know that approximately 5 million people die each year in this world due to not moving (inactivity)? Another 5 million die each year as a result of smoking.
So a fitness program is very important.
At Least 2 Weight Lifting Workouts Per Week
Weight Lifting Complete (a fitness authority) recommends at least 2 weight lifting workouts per week as well as a minimum of 2 cardio workouts per week. From there, progression is a key to becoming physically fit.
This means ANY good fitness program should get more difficult over time. This means you should lift heavier weight and do more reps for your weight training workouts.
For your cardio workouts, you need to begin to make progress as well. Many people do the same cardio workout over and over again. This doesn't help improve your fitness but it does maintain your current level.
There are also other aspects of fitness you should include in your program such as stretching exercises to increase flexibility, improve workout recovery, and even to assist in building muscle (weighted stretching).
Bodyweight Exercises are a Great Way to Get Started
You can even start an amazing fitness program with just bodyweight exercises.
Some of the best overall exercises in existence like the squat, push up, and lunge can all be done right now with no fitness equipment required.
A good plan of progression for those bodyweight exercises would be to increase the number of reps over time. For instance, you could set a goal for the year to reach 100 reps of each.
There aren't many people out there that can do 100 bodyweight squats, 100 push ups, and 100 lunges. Just getting to that point would greatly improve your fitness level!
Home FitnessHome fitness is much better in my opinion than gym fitness.
Doing your workouts at home ensures consistency and prevents excuses for not going to the gym. Sometimes you just won't feel like putting the effort in to drive to the gym, get ready, put on the right clothes, etc.
But at home, who cares what you wear? You won't have to drive to the gym. You won't have to go out in the extremely hot or extremely cold weather or other bad weather.
You will be more consistent with exercise, which is very important to getting results. A home gym is much more convenient than any commercial gym.
You Don't Need Expensive Machines
And you don't need a huge amount of equipment that is very costly. At home fitness is my choice over any others.
Really, there is no comparison at all between a home gym and a fitness gym or commercial gym. Always choose a home gym!
Remember, I have been lifting weights since the year 2000 (many years) at home and have been able to achieve amazing results over time. I have never injured myself lifting weights and have been able to safely lift weights at home.
And I do all of my workouts on my own too. I don't have a workout partner to spot me or assist me with any exercises.
Some of the authorities in fitness like you to do a physical fitness test before starting a fitness program.
The fitness assessment usually consists of the following components and exercise:
- Resting Heart Rate
- Active Heart Rate (walk 1 mile and then measure)
- Time to Walk 1 Mile or Time to Run 1.5 miles
- Number of Sit Ups
- Number of Push Ups
- Forward Reach Distance (seated on floor with legs in front)
- Waist Measurement (1 inch above hip bones)
- Body Mass Index
While this isn't a bad fitness assessment, it can definitely use some improvement if you're looking for a starting point so you can measure results.
For example, you'll take your starting measurements from the fitness assessment and perform the same assessment later to see how much you have improved on your exercise times, heart rates, flexibility, and strength.
Keep Track of All Workouts with a Workout LogOne of the best fitness tips I can give you is to always keep track of your workouts and exactly what you've done each workout.
With the WLC System, I teach you how to take the right measurements to assess your progress. For instance, I show you how to measure your heart rate so you can find the best fat burning zone for your cardio workouts.
Another example is that you will do a weekly assessment to measure your body composition progress. Body fat percentage is used as the measure of progress versus Body Mass Index (BMI).
I am not a fan of the Body Mass Index or BMI because it doesn't take into account the different sizes of people, their muscle mass, and their body fat levels.
Body Fat Percentage is Better Than BMI
Measuring body fat percentage is a much better measure of progress. Your waist measurement is also a good measure of progress.
But only the amount of lean muscle mass and body fat mass will tell you if you're making progress in your body composition.
Your fitness levels are measured by the exercises you do. For example, when you start weight lifting you will start out with very light weights to not only make it easier for you but to give your body a chance to take advantage of those lighter weights too.
You won't start out on the WLC System with relatively heavy weight and give it everything you have during the first workout. This is highly counter productive.
Any fitness test that directs you to go all out before you have even started is not a good option.
Don't Do the Typical Fitness Assessment Before StartingSo the fitness assessment I just gave you is not a good option because you're supposed to see how many sit ups and push ups you can do.
When you go all out during the first workout, this adds too much fatigue and stress.
For instance, you might be really sore for a few days after this fitness assessment due to going to failure from those exercises. You don't need to do this with the WLC System as you'll measure results each week, and you'll see the improvements.
You will assess your progress each and every week and get very good at taking the right measurements.
As far as weight lifting progress goes, your main goal will be to increase the amount of weight you are lifting. All weight lifting programs you find here will be designed to help you to do that.
So you get plenty of assistance in getting stronger with the design of the programs.
Physical FitnessAs defined by Wikipedia, physical fitness is a “state of health and well-being.” It's really just the level of being fit and healthy.
If you're fit and healthy, you should be able to perform physical movements, jobs, or functions at a certain level.
For instance, carrying a heavy couch takes a certain level of fitness that many people don't have.
Vigrous exercise helps you to increase physical fitness but must be supported by proper diet (“proper” diet is widely contested by many experts) and adequate rest (not so much argument over 8 hours of sleep each night).
For example, if you worked on carrying that same heavy couch every day for 4 weeks, your physical fitness would improve and it would get easier to carry that couch. Then, it's no longer a “heavy” couch. It's not a “light” couch. You can now move on to heavier couches to improve your fitness level even more.
Improving Your Fitness Level Takes Hard Work
In other words, you are going to have to work hard to increase your physical fitness. As you know, you must work very hard at anything to get better at it.
If you want to get stronger, then you have to work on lifting heavier things. Speed requires sprinting to get better. Getting better at any exercise requires that you work hard on that specific exercise. Some exercises will have carry over to other types of exercise.
For instance, taking shorter rest between weight lifting exercises will improve your cardiovascular exercise. But to get really good at a cardio exercise, you need to work on that specific exercise.
Improving your physical fitness flexibility requires you to work on exercises that improve your flexibility. Stiff-legged deadlifts will help the flexibility in your hamstrings as an example.
Yoga FitnessYoga is a great form of exercise that will improve your physical fitness 100% without a doubt.
Is yoga alone enough for you to become fit enough to live a normal life? Yes, here at Weight Lifting Complete, we believe this to be true. But only if you do plenty of it each week (3 to 4 sessions per week for an hour).
Yoga can definitely improve your fitness levels and allow you live a normal life easily. But who wants to be normal? I don't.
This is why I like to add weight lifting, cardio, stretching, and further conditioning exercises to my exercise programs. Yoga can be added to take your fitness to entirely new level.
Breathing, stamina, strength, flexibility, meditation, balance, stress, and sleep can all be improved through yoga.
Four Types of Fitness
According to the American College of Sports Medicine (largest exercise science association on this planet), there are 4 types of fitness:
- Cardiorespiratory Fitness
- Muscular Fitness
- Body Composition
The above 4 types of fitness will improve your health. And Weight Lifting Complete agrees 100% with that assessment.
All of the exercise programs you'll find here will focus on those 4 types of fitness.
Usually, exercises can be classified into 2 simple categories: 1) aerobic exercises, and 2) anaerobic exercises.
Aerobic exercise = physical exercise of varying intensity that depends on aerobic (requires oxygen) energy.
Anaerobic exercise = physical exercise with an intensity that causes the formation of lactate.
Oxygen is required for aerobic exercise and this is usually lower intensity exercise that can be done for periods that last longer than 2 minutes (approximately).
During aerobic exercise, oxygen is carried from your breath to the muscles which provide them with the energy they need to carry on the exercise you are doing.
For anaerobic exercise, oxygen is not required. You will be performing this exercise at a high intensity and you won't be able to continue for longer periods of time.
An example of aerobic exercise is walking on the treadmill.
Weight lifting is an example of anaerobic exercise. Or, sprinting at full effort is anaerobic.
Wow, there are an absolutely HUGE number of fitness exercises and this number increases every day as people think of new exercises.
There are so many new exercises being developed every year that is surprises me greatly. There are some good ones being developed and then there are others that are just silly.
I want to talk about some of the best fitness exercises and leave the others behind for now.
We'll start with my favorite.
Weight Lifting ExercisesWeight lifting is my absolute favorite hobby and one that I have loved since I started seriously lifting weights in the year 2000.
There are 7 core exercises that I include as a part of every strength training program you'll find here at Weight Lifting Complete.
Here are those 7 exercises for improving the component of strength in your fitness program:
- Bench Press
- Overhead Press
- Pull Up
For each of the fitness exercises listed above, there are a large number of variations.
Many of the above weight training exercises can be done with your bodyweight only. For instance, the overhead press can instead be done as a handstand push up with your body weight.
Start With Easier Exercises and Work Your Way Up
You can slowly work up to a handstand push up by using easier variations and increasing the difficulty by using a harder variation as you get closer to a full handstand push up.
The goal for all weight lifting exercises is to get better at each of them by improving the amount of weight lifted and the number of repetitions completed.
Improving strength levels is the goal of weight lifting. When strength increases, you can also build muscle.
Adding lean muscle to a woman's frame can add curves in all the right places. Some women do not believe weight lifting is for them, but they would be wrong. Lifting weights is awesome for everyone.
For some reason, crunches always pop up on Internet searches for the best exercises. I have no idea why that is because they are not one of the best exercises.
So many people waste their time working abs all the time.
For instance, many people believe that sit ups are all they need to do to lose weight and get rid of their tummy.
Many infomercials by scammers are some ab machine that's supposed to get rid of all the body fat. Some of the ab machines are so easy that you don't have to do anything! They are supposed to just melt the fat away.
Wow, these scammers must feel great about themselves. I could never take a dime from someone by selling an ab machine or fat burner. This isn't fair to anyone.
The best abdominal exercises are the big compound weight lifting exercises like the squat, deadlift, push up, and pull up. You can even work your abs really well by doing a crunching type movement at the top of the dip.
Does anyone truly believe that a 300 pound squat won't work the abdominals better than a bodyweight crunch or plank or leg lift or any other ab exercise?
Trust me, compound weight lifting exercises will be all you need to increase strength in your abs.
Getting Really Strong on Big Compound Exercises Will Take Care of Your AbdominalsNow, if you are really strong on those exercises and have a low body fat percentage and don't like the look of your abs, you can target them as a weakness.
For instance, calves were always my weakness so I always include extra calf exercises in my workouts. I've been doing this since I started lifting weights and now my calves are very respectable and no longer a weakness for me.
You can do the same with abs if needed. Add a couple of ab exercises and work on getting really strong on those.
Keep in mind that the goal of any exercise is to get better at that exercise by doing heaviery weight or doing more reps. I prefer both but increasing weight is the most important factor.
This means you need to find abdominal exercises that allow you to increase the resistance used. For instance, if you want to do crunches you need to find a safe way to add extra resistance. A good choice would be the cable crunch using weight plates on a cable machine.
By the way, a cable machine is a great investment AFTER you have a good home gym full of free weights.
Yoga ExercisesIf you didn't already know, I highly recommend yoga exercises as they can benefit you greatly.
Many bodybuilders, weight lifters, power lifters, strong man, and strong woman competitors may think yoga is bogus and just some easy exercise.
Yoga is not easy. There are some poses that will make the strongest men and women start shaking. Yoga is a great exercise to implement for all people.
There are a huge number of yoga exercises and may be categorized as follows:
- Standing Yoga Poses
- Forward Bend Yoga Poses
- Twist Yoga Poses
Did you know you can use certain yoga poses to alleviate many issues? For instance, if you are having trouble sleeping (insomnia), you can try a cat pose that provides a gentle massage to your spine and stomach.
Again, Weight Lifting Complete highly recommends yoga exercises!
Stretching ExercisesStretching exercises are another exercise type that I highly recommend.
Some of my favorite stretching exercises are dynamic stretches and mobility exercises. Some examples of dynamic stretching are the front to back leg swing and the side to side leg swing.
Those are 2 exercises I do before every weight lifting leg workout that I do.
Static stretching is something included in the WLC System in the form of forceful or weighted stretching. For instance, after a heavy set of squats, you can into a deep quadriceps stretch and you attempt to increase the stretch in your quads as much as possible.
I highly recommend you implement dynamic and static stretching in your fitness program.
Yoga exercises also provide amazing stretches to pretty much every muscle group in your body.
When using the WLC System, you will always be doing stretching exercises with every weight lifting workout. So don't worry about how you will add stretching into your exercise program.
To understand the best exercises, you must understand the types of exercises available to increase your physical fitness levels.
Here are the types of fitness you're most likely trying to achieve:
- Body Composition
For endurance, you're going to look for cardiovascular exercise (steady state cardio and high intensity interval training) and even high repetition sets of weight lifting exercises.
A high rep set of squats will really test your endurance and improve your endurance and strength but also balance and flexibility. You'll even begin to get body composition improvements from high rep squats.
High Reps Build Plenty of Muscle Too!Here at Weight Lifting Complete, we recommend sets of high reps and believe they build all aspects of fitness. Some experts will tell you not to do any weight lifting above 6 reps or 12 reps because you are only working slow twitch muscle mass.
Well, that's a pack of bologna because high rep sets are amazing. For instance, do a heavy set of 20 rep squats and see if your endurance isn't tested. If you are truly brave, do a heavy set of 50 rep squats. Be careful, though, as this is not easy or for people who don't know their limits.
Flexibility is greatly increased through weight lifting exercises as well. You're going to get a great stretch under high loads which increases flexibility in that muscle group. For instance, full range of motion stiff legged deadlifts will increase flexibility in your hamstrings.
Weight training also improves your balance greatly. Single leg exercises like the lunge, Bulgarian squats, and especially single leg romanian deadlifts are great choices for a vast imporvement in balance.
Weight Lifting Provides a Huge Number of Benefits
All types of stabilizer muscles are worked through weight lifting exercises, but dumbbell exercises or kettlebell exercises are the best for this goal.
Dumbbells are highly recommended. I always include a vast number of dumbbell exercises in my workouts and recommend you do the same.
There are many reasons for this but stability and balance are two of those reasons. Working each muscle group more independently is another reason. I believe more overall muscle mass is worked with dumbbell exercises versus barbell exercises.
But sometimes a barbell exercise is better because loading of heavy weight is more efficient and easier. For instance, you can't do dumbbell squats with very heavy weight as you can do with barbell squats.
If you wanted to do 400 pound squats, imagine trying to hold a 200 pound dumbbell in each arm. Not going to be as easy as loading the barbell with 400 pounds of weight plates.
Here's another good example:
Lower Back Stress is Important in Weight Lifting
I prefer the single arm overhead press with a dumbbell versus the barbell overhead press because it's much less stressful on the lower back. With weight lifting, you have to be mindful of the overall stress you are placing on your lower back.
The squat and deadlift alone in one week can cause high amounts of stress on your lower back. If you add many more exercises that stess your lower back, you may have trouble recovering properly.Push ups are amazing at working your stabilizer muscles. This is especially true when you do them elevated with extra weight.
Place your feet on a bench and use a barbell in a power rack or a Smith machine to place your hands. Hang extra weight plates with an Ironmind hip belt (as I do) and you may even start shaking a little. This means your stabilizer muscles will greatly improve as you get better.
A suspension trainer (think rings in Olympic events) is awesome at working stabilizer muscles. For instance, you should try bodyweight dips with suspension rings.
I have done dips at a body weight of 240 pounds with an extra 100 pounds added for 15 reps. A single rep with suspension rings the very first time made me shake uncontrollably.
Here Are the Best Exercises to Implement
When it comes to the overall best exercises to improve your fitness, I trust in the following:
- Weight lifting exercises
- Cardiovascular exercises
- Conditioning exercises
- Stretching exercises
You will find those 4 types of exercises in the WLC System and used with every workout program you'll find here.
I usually only add conditioning exercises during muscle building cycles with a higher calorie intake. These workouts are high intensity for short periods of time.
If you really enjoy yoga, you can even add yoga exercises to your program but you won't find those exercises included with the WLC System.
Weight Loss ExercisesThe best weight loss exercises are going to be the ones in which your arms and hands place healthy foods into your mouth.
I am 100% serious about this. The typical weight loss diets will try to make it easy for you and tell you that you can eat whatever you want.
The truth is: “You can't and you shouldn't eat whatever you want if you want to be healthy.”
Instead, you have to change your lifestyle and the way you eat if you want to be healthy and look good. Food is so important in your life, and you must learn to make it that important.
Healthy Foods Should ONLY Be In Your Diet 100% of the Time
Healthy foods should make up 100% of your diet, and this is getting more difficult to accomplish due to all the manufactured foods and slick marketing that you'll find out there.
For instance, just because a food says “organic” this does not mean that it's healthy. Food companies are now using that word to bait you into buying their unhealthy foods.
You have to watch the ingredients list on every food and hope that companies aren't leaving out harmful ingredients that they added so they can sell more food. I would say some are doing this, but that's just a guess knowing human nature.
And I'm not 100% sure why anyone would think they can go back to eating unhealthy foods after a weight loss diet. Why would you NOT gain weight again? People do these yo-yo diets and expect something different each time. Not going to happen.
Permanent Results Require Permanent Changes
A permanent change must be made to get permanent results. Doesn't that make more sense? It should because it's true.
Besides eating only the healthiest foods, the best weight loss exercises are a combination of weight lifting and cardio.
If you're eating the right foods, weight training and cardio will 100% allow you to burn body fat quickly.
The truth is, though, that cardiovascular exercise done at the right intensity is the true secret to burning fat. But, you can't eat whatever you want and expect to burn fat from cardio exercise. You must be “dialed in” with your diet and then you can burn fat with cardio.
Don't Lose Muscle Mass
Weight lifting allows you to keep muscle mass during periods of weight loss. Muscle mass is HIGHLY important to weight loss because muscle burns calories and is actively working for you each day.
Losing muscle causes your metabolism to slow which means you must take in even fewer calories to lose more weight. Not good.
Using the WLC System will ensure that you are losing the right type of body weight and that you're doing everything correctly to see the greatest possible results in the shortest amount of time.
I want to give you a list of cardio exercises as these are great exercises for burning body fat.
Keep in mind, though, that there are many more than this. I highly recommend a large variety and cycling between these cardio activities throughout the year.
- Rowing machine
- Elliptical machine
- Treadmill machine
- Incline walking on treadmill
- Stepper machine or stairclimber
- Exercise bike
- Recumbent bike
- Cycling trainer
- Walking outdoors
- Jogging or running outdoors
- Roller blading or skating
- Jump rope
- Outdoor cycling
- Climbing stairs
- Light sled pushing or pulling
- Carrying weights
- Pushing a wheelbarrow
- Playing sports like basketball or soccer
- Chopping wood
The best cardio activities (fior burning fat) are those that allow you to keep your heart rate in the fat burning zone for longer periods of time.
There are some exercises that have bursts of higher intensity such as basketball and soccer and this is more anaerobic activity versus aerobic activity. But, these are still great exercises and will improve your fitness. Keep in mind, though, that they will add more overall stress and require more recovery time.
You have to find balance between all the exercises you choose to do and the WLC System helps you find that balance.
Finding the right exercise equipment is not as complicated as you may think.
You just have to know how to eliminate the noise that is out there. For instance, abdominal machines that you see being sold on TV is not a good choice for exercise equipment. Other machines like Bowflex and Total Gym are not the best choices (even if Chuck Norris says so – as I say that I am ducking, hiding, and looking around for Mr. Norris).
The best exercise equipment is free weights for strength training and cardio machines for cardiovascular exercise.
But, cardio machines aren't a must if you are able to get outside often and do a variety of cardio exercises. I prefer to have a few different cardio machines indoors for bad weather.
Weight Lifting EquipmentThe best weight lifting equipment is listed out below.
- Power Rack
- Olympic Barbell Sets
- Dumbbell Sets
- Weight Bench
- Pull Up Station
- Dip Station
- Extra Weight Plates
- Ironmind Hip Belt
You can really get away with just a set of adjustable dumbbells.
When building your home gym, though, I highly recommend all of the above exercise equipment for safe and effective workouts.
I personally like the exercise ball as it can provide some very good exercises and does require the use of stabilizer muscles.
The exercise ball is not the greatest exercise invention in history, though, as some of the manufacturers might want you to believe.
Some of the exercises I see people doing with exercise balls are ridiculous and very dangerous. And then some are ridiculously easy and won't really improve your fitness levels at all.
For instance, if you put a big exercise ball between your legs and squeeze together for your workout over and over again, you won't get any results. This is a compelte waste of time.
If you want to sit on an exercise ball and do a dumbbell overhead press, this is fine but be careful not to roll off the ball. Sometimes, it's just not worth taking a chance on an injury.
Home Exercise Equipment
You most likely have space in your home or apartment for a home gym. You truly don't need much space at all for a set of adjustable dumbbells.
If you have plenty of space, you'll want to use that space effectively and choose only the best home exercise equipment.
The largest piece of equipment you should have is a power rack.
Other weight machines and typical home gyms with different weight stations are not a good choice as they are not as effective at building strength and muscle as free weights.
The first step in home exercise equipment is your gym flooring.
Don't Damage the Floor in Your Home
If you have an already delicate floor such as ceramic tile or hardwood flooring, you need to make sure you aren't going to damage your existing floor with the new exercise equipment.
A concrete floor in a basement or garage won't be damaged, but it's also very hard. This is fine, but I really enjoy the foam flooring I have in my home gym.
All of my workouts for many years were done on a concrete basement floor. I then tried horse stall mats that were thick and hard rubber. Those were just like concrete so I gave them away.
Now, I am very happy with the soft foam flooring as it is very comfortable and works well. It can be damaged easily with heavy weights, but tiles can easily be replaced and are low cost too.
Once you have your gym floor in place, you can start adding only the best home exercise equipment.
Start Adding the Right Exercise Equipment Slowly
This should be a power rack first if you have the space followed by dumbbells, barbells, and weight plates. Some power racks may have a cable system available, and I also highly recommend a cable system. It's not a must but highly recommended.
You also need a place to do chin ups and dips. Most power racks have a chin up station and may also have an attachment for dips. You can do dips in a power rack with 2 barbells but this can be a little dangerous as the barbells can roll while doing the exercise.
Instead of taking that risk, I recommend a dip station. This can be attached to the power rack or a separate piece of equipment. And yes, dips are that good of an exercise to warrant its own piece of equipment.
Exercise BikesExercise bikes are not my favorite piece of equipment. Let me explain why this is so as you may not be in the same situation as I.
For my normal job, I have to sit most of the day. Sitting for long periods of time most of the year is not good for several muscles across the front of the hip. Shortening of these hip flexor muscles will occur.
Certain stretching exercises will help counter the affects of sitting for long periods.
So you might see why I don't want to add more exercises that cause me to be in a seated position. Exercise bikes do this. I would rather choose from other cardio exercises other than a bicycle position.
For instance, I will always choose a treadmill or elliptical machine over an exercise bike.
If you're in the same situation as I, you should also stay away from exercise bikes. If you don't sit for most of the day for your job or when you're home, then an exercise bike can really help you.
The WLC System provides you with a detailed and complete exercise program that takes into account all factors of fitness.
Here's what you'll be doing with the complete exercise program:
- Weight Lifting
- Diet and Nutrition
- Cardiovascular Exercise
- Measuring Results and Making Adjustments
- Rest and Recovery
- Planning and Goal Setting
All of the above aspects of the WLC System form a complete exercise program.
Before and during your weight lifting workouts, you will implement stretching exercises too.
I want to quickly discuss each aspect of an exercise program.
Weight LiftingWeight lifting is the key to building muscle, strength, and power.
Diet alone will never allow you to build the body you really deserve.
Too many people try to do it all without ever touching a heavy weight.
You will start out lifting very light weights and doing the best exercises.
The weight lifting programs are designed to help you progressively increase the amount of weight you are lifting.
If you aren't lifting weights in your exercise program, you are missing out on lots of fun and amazing progress in terms of health and appearance. Getting stronger is fun! Don't miss out.
Diet and Nutrition
Consider the foods you put into your body as the fuel you need to function. Fill it with low quality fuel and you get low quality results. Fill it with premium fuel and you get high quality results. You can control all of your results through the foods you eat.
Some people who lift weights and exercise believe this allows them to eat more junk food because they are burning it off anyway.
Well, it's not that simple and this simplified way of thinking will get you into lots of trouble. I thought the same thing myself for many years. It didn't work out too well for me.
Once I started eating ONLY the healthiest of foods with no junk food at all, I started getting the results I deserved from all the hard work I was doing.
If you want to do lots of hard work and have nothing to show for it, continue eating unhealthy junk foods. They are stopping all your progress completely.
Cardiovascular ExerciseDifferent types of cardiovascular exercise will provide you with so many different benefits.
You need to learn why cardio is the secret to burning fat and why you should always include cardio as a part of your program.
Some people will do the same cardio exercises over and over again without getting any better at them. This is why people stay the same and always look the same.
Instead of doing the same thing over and over, work on making progress on the cardio exercises you choose. And then when you get really good at those, change to a different cardio exercise.
This is how you make great progress with aerobic exercise and change your body.
Measuring Results and Making Adjustments
The real secret to success with the WLC System is due to measuring results and making adjustments. Too many people continue an exercise program and never measure their results and never make the right changes to their exercise plan.
There is no other system in existence (I am sure they will start popping up now) that teach you how to get results that never stop. Learn how to always move in the positive direction and closer to your goals.
Yes, this takes effort to measure all the right things such as calorie intake, body weight, and body fat percentage but it's well worth the effort.
You won't be driving blind through your exercise program any more.
Rest and RecoveryIf you're always exercising and never resting, you do not give your body the opportunity to recover.
You need to know how much to rest, when to rest, when to push harder, and when to take a break.
Your body builds itself back up after exercise and makes all the necessary repairs.
Some people will want to exercise too much (especially when starting as a beginner) and won't allow enough time to rest and recover. For example, I decided I was going to add more and more workouts and more and more exercises when I first started exercising regularly.
That didn't work out well for me.
Planning and Goal Setting
You must plan if you want to succeed. You don’t just go to the gym each day and just throw together anything you want. You must set goals and have a plan to achieve those goals. Without a plan, you’re working blindly and that’s never a good thing.
There are a huge number of single workout routines posted all over the Internet. People believe they can just take these single routines and just throw a bunch of them together (Crossfit Workout of the Day is an example) and everything will just work out.
You shouldn't just throw a bunch of random exercises together each day and hope for the best.
Instead, you need a long term plan that allows you to make faster progress. This is called programming or an exercise program.
You can plan your success with a true exercise program. So called programs that don't have plans are not programs.
Exercise to Burn Fat
The most important exercise to burn fat is getting up and moving. More movement throughout the day is the key to burning fat.
But exercise isn't the only key to burning fat.
I even dare to say that you shouldn't rely on exercise to burn fat until you start eating eating properly. In other words, don't expect fat loss without proper diet and nutrition. You will only set yourself up for failure if you depend on exercise alone to burn fat.
The absolute best exercise to burn fat is a combination of movement throughout the day, weight lifting exercises, stretching exercises, and cardiovascular exercises.
Once you have your diet setup properly with all the right foods that nutrient dense, your exercise program will appear to begin to melt the fat right off your body. Your waist will start shrinking and body fat will disappear all over your body.
You'll even lose fat in your face and neck areas. You'll start to look more and more like the image you were designed to be.
Aerobic ExerciseAerobic exercise is highly, highly, highly important to your life.
One of the tricks that many people fall for in their journey to build muscle is to cut out all aerobic exercise so the calories can go to building muscle.
I took that advice many years ago and ended up in very bad shape physically.
Walking up stairs was a horrible experience as I would be extremely out of breath when I reached the top. Not good.
My health greatly declined from the lack of aerobic exercise.
Aerobic Exercise Doesn't Just Burn Calories
You see, aerobic exercise doesn't just burn calories (muscle building experts have a very simplified view if they believe this). Its purpose is much greater than that and there are hundreds of purposes for this type of exercise.
- Your heart pumps oxygenated blood to working muscles
- Stimulates heart rate and breathing rate
- Provides physical health benefits and emotional health benefits
- Prevents and reduces the chance of developing disease
- Should cause you to break a sweat which is very beneficial
- Strengthens your heart and pumps more blood to your body
- Takes nutrients in your blood throughout your body
- Causes an increase in mitochindria number and activity
- Fat burning requires more oxygen than carbohydrate burning
So no matter what you do, never ever stop doing aerobic exercise or cardio. You need cardiovascular exercise for your body. You need to physically move throughout the day and often.
Get Up and Exercise Even If It's Walking Around
If you find yourself sitting for long periods of time, you need to take breaks to go walk and move around. Do this often throughout each day. Get a FitBit or something similar that reminds you to move throughout the day.
With the WLC System, I recommend at a minimum 2 cardio sessions per week and a maximum of 12 cardio sessions per week.
The number of sessions you reach depends on your goals and your results on a weekly basis. You will measure results each week and make adjustments as needed to continue getting results.
The secret to burning fat is aerobic exercise done the right way (intensity and exercise choice).
Conclusion to Exercise
Exercise is a huge subject and very confusing to most people. I've been exercising rigorously for many years, but I see how one can easily be confused.
Weight Lifting Complete exists to be your exercise guide and to show you the truth about exercise.
It's very easy to make mistakes when it comes to weight loss, diet, and exercise because there are so many lies out there. Lies that are there just to make money from you.
I hope this exercise guide on this page has helped to open your eyes. I am always here to answer your questions through email. Just let me know how I can help.