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Dec 28 15 4:10 PM

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Happy Holidays everyone!

2016 is around the corner.  At the end of 2016 what would you (realistically) like to obtain by your exercising, diet and rest?

I am 62.  My goals are to maintain my fitness for practicing jujutsu, as well as general day to day living activities.  I want to maintain conditioned forearms and shins.  Also to maintain my level of flexibility, strength and endurance.  Lastly I want to maintain my solidity.

Now there are various ways to achieve this.  As far as the exercising part, I prefer these years to just use a piece of speargun tubing.  I do a small number of general compound movements to fatigue. There is nothing complicated about this routine.  I enjoy it and it gets and keeps me fit for my purposes.

⦁    Keep fitness goals realistic for your lifestyle.
⦁    Do routines you actually enjoy.  If you enjoy doing your workouts, you will more likely be consistent.
⦁    Keep records of how you are progressing.  In other words you need some feedback on how you are donig.  That way you can make changes if and when needed in your routines (as well as diet and rest).

What are your 2016 fitness goals?  Share them with us if you wish.  It may help others to make theirs.

Take care and always train safe.

Pro Cable Course

Last Edited By: FCrivello Dec 28 15 4:18 PM. Edited 3 times

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#1 [url]

Dec 29 15 1:48 AM

Fred, thank You for this forum and huge motivation to my expander workouts.

I have question to You: do You workout only with tubing (and with ju-jutsu/grappling work) or do You do also bodyweight excercises (i deal with this theme in another topic - I want to find, if it´s there athlete, that´s working out only with strands whole body)?


I don´t have any specific resolutions for next Year but more like goals I would love to achieve in long run.
I mentioned some of them in another topics.

I´m nerly 31. In current time I´m working out mainly with expander with some added bodyweight excercises. I don´t want to change that (I found out, that strandpulling goes hand by hand with my fitness goals/frugal nature). But it is possible I add some equipment to that.

My goals:
Be consistent with my workouts (I would love to mantain ideally 5 workouts a week, minimally 3 workouts a week. I had been from childhood fan of strenghth sports and working out, but for long time had problem with consistency).

Be consistent with my diet (I try to eat at least 4 times a day. My diet is far from perfect, but I would concider it as good diet. It´s not standrand muscle building diet too - I don´t count nutritients in it. Also, as I mention, I´m very frugal - If I had chance to have free/cheaper food, I go with that. I don´t plan any changes in diet, however I would love to reduce drinking of lemonades. I don´t drink alcohol for four months now - I want to continue that).

I would love to be mobile and strong in old age (one of my biggest fear is be not albe to move).

I would love to motivate with my working out my kids at future (I have 2 little kids, I think I can form their´s attitude to fitness through own example as "working-out" father).

Correct bad posture from desk job + broad my lats/upper back (I do neck stretches at least every other day, ideally every day. My most undeveloped muscle part are lats/upper back. I would love to change that with some expander excercises as use expanders to help myself fix my bad posture).

Return to muscle mass I had several Years ago (I would love if people concider me as well "builded" as they do then, when I heard from strangers that I have "guns" - I know it´s only ego thing )

So I would concider my goals as bodybuilding/health purposes.

If I had to choose one specific goal I have for next weeks it´s increase number of max reps I can do with push ups in one set.
Now it´s 20. I want to increase it to 35 (without specific push ups program, but by progression in my expander/bodyweight workouts).
And I want to do more chin ups/pull ups when I will be with kids outside (in children playground where will be possibility to perform this excercise for example)

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#2 [url]

Dec 29 15 9:03 AM

Thank you Lemmy01 for your kind words.

I use tubing daily and I try to walk a few miles a day at least.  The tubing is what keeps me fit for grappling and has for years.  If I did not exercise I would not be as good in my jujutsu.

You look like you have given some serious thought to your goals.  Let us know of your progress in your push-ups and chin-ups.

As far as improving your posture, are you doing anything currently?  Maybe, besides exercising, ensure you are sitting properly.  A search online certainly will give you ideas to add to what you already know.

There are a number of back exercises you can do with expanders, with and without handles.  Also some you may find useful perhaps in your posture goals.  
Look over as a start: Useful Resources - On Going Project  Take your time and look around.  Some of the posts give links to information on working out with expanders.  Also you could always post separately for help from the board.

Lemmy01, thank you for sharing your goals.

Take good care and always train safe.

Pro Cable Course

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#3 [url]

Dec 29 15 11:34 AM

Thank You for answer - wow, so it is possible to use only strandpulling and have great results only from that.
This is very important information for me - it means that if I sometimes replace for example bodyweight squat excercise for expander leg press, it could be as good workout for my leg muscles and joints in long run health results. I know walking is important part too and it´s recomended by many.

Fred, did You please do any other thing for Your ab muscles and lover back too or it´s all part of Your routine with tubing (I saw in Your routine from Pro cable course, that You do lot of "twisting" excercises for tubing)?

Yeah, I spend some time on thoughts about goals and equipment and routine I use.
I have some limitations of work out equipment and type of workout I could use and want to mantain my health (which is on top of my muslce building goals) - correction of posture it´s big part of that and it´s one thing of many that lead me to expander workouts.

Yes, as I mentioned I do neck (and some back) excercises and stretches that I learned from physiotherapist (I had like Year and half ago daily headeches from combination of stiff neck muscles and displaced neck verberta), which help me tremendously (no headeches from it anymore if I perform these excercises consistently . It´s stretches in forms of forehead flexions, trapezius stretches, and so on.
Above that I do at least 3 bridge excercise holds after my workouts (hamstring bridge, hand supported wrestlers bridge and standard bridge - I am very carreful with second one).
Expander excercises like Front chest pull, Archer´s pull, Seated rows (and pulling excercises in general) helps my with this goal a lot. Also, a do few tricks within expander excercises: for example, if I do biceps curl. I put not worked hand behind my back - that lead to better standing posture within excercise performing.
I try to get use to good habbits (sitting, etc) but that´s maybe hardest part from it - body is simply used to bad habbits and return automatically to bad posture position (so I must sometimes remind that to me and fix my sitting, and so on).

Thanks, I am long time lurker on this forum and read lot of stuff about strandpulling already (but one is always learning ) - I had some research about best excercises for improving posture in another topic too.

My plan about push ups is to do one push up set with max repetition at start of every workout.
I dont have specific plan with chin ups - however I will inform as I reach 35 push ups and go better with chin ups/pull ups (which I can do only max 3 for chin ups and 1 rep for pull ups now - I think vertical pulling is my weakest strength).

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#5 [url]

Dec 30 15 10:43 AM

BigBruvOfEngIandUK wrote:

Lemmy01 wrote:I would love to be mobile and strong in old age (one of my biggest fear is be not albe to move).

Have a read of the articles "The Fitness Fixer" and "Functional Fitness"

Thank You. Interesting stuff. I surely (and unfortunately) use bad bending everyday :/
I´m saving the link.

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#6 [url]

Jan 11 16 1:33 AM

Lemmy01 wrote:

I dont have specific plan with chin ups - however I will inform as I reach 35 push ups and go better with chin ups/pull ups (which I can do only max 3 for chin ups and 1 rep for pull ups now - I think vertical pulling is my weakest strength).


I did reach 35 set in a row yesterday with two breaks between reps, Today I reach my goal, 35 push ups in a row. First 10 reps are speedy, second 10 are ok so I think I can do 20 now with ease everyday. However third 10 are now still difficult and last 5 are very hard for me. We will see in time. I¨m not doing very strict push ups, but I think my technique is ok.
t is not my goal, but if I could do 50 push ups in a row max and 30 push ups for reps, that would be awesome

Chin ups/Pull ups...
No upgrade here. I did 3 chin ups last week, third with very limited range of motion. I think my main problem here is that I pull them mainly with my biceps and not my with my back.
However I´m adding on reps and tubes with my expander on ODP and seated rows, so that could help. I expect improvement in time. I will try to do few reps of chin/pulls every working day (I found a place where I can do them when I travel from work).

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#7 [url]

Jan 11 16 2:42 AM

If you are not doing so already, try the chin ups with hands close together. You can also make the exercise easier by using a long band that you have hanging from the bar and you put a foot in it and this helps to pull you up to the bar so you get more reps.

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#8 [url]

Jan 12 16 2:28 PM

Thank You for tip. I tried it yesterday, close hand position really helps (nearly one rep more).
I don´t have band for pull up support (I know about this option).

Best thing that I could do for adding reps would be loosing some weight (that could lead me to better progression)

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#9 [url]

Jan 12 16 11:51 PM

I agree with the close hand position for chins, but I hardly ever do them anymore since I screwed up my elbow tendons/ligaments doing chins. Doing pull ups/chin ups using rings to allow grip to twist or having a bar with angles to turn palms more to facing each other is easier on my elbow joints - along with the close grip.

I still like using a straight bar, so limit myself to slow-mo, close grip pull ups (not chins) which I combine with leg raises (knees come up to touch or come beside forearms/elbows). Sometimes I bring my feet up and past the bar and do inverted rows which limits the ROM until my hamstrings/butt hit the bar.

"Any problem in the World can be solved by dancing." James Brown 
"I don't even know if I'm doin' this right" John Mellencamp
Mastering principles, frees us from slavery to recipes.
Set a DIRECTION, not a goal.

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#10 [url]

Jan 17 16 10:59 PM

Chin theory

The actual function of a biceps muscle is to twist the hand from a pronated position to a supinated position, or the reverse. Test it yourselves: Bend your arm at a 90 degree angle, clinch a fist with knuckles up, now turn your palm up. Feel your biceps with your free hand.

So, when one chins and the hands remain in a fixed position, because they can't rotate, this opposed to chinning on rings or a free handle, I sort of think that it binds the biceps tendons a bit sometimes leading to tendonitis.

For any fishermen out there, if you use spinning tackle, you are taught not to reel against the drag because it twists your fishing line. This is a loose analogy to the issue with arm tendons I think.

So, for those who can, I'd simply get a really strong strad set, secure it to a really strong rope (you don't want it to pop on you), go throw it over a tree limb, anchor it, and do strand pulls with one arm. By doing them one armed, you can really stretch the latissimus on each side, extend the range a bit at the top with a lean, pull deeper down with the strand handle at the bottom.

And, you can always use your free hand to pull down on a heavy load, then release it to let the strand retract.  All sorts of variations, all easier on the biceps tendon than chinning.


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#11 [url]

Jan 18 16 12:53 AM

Thanks for tips.

I¨m slowly adding on sets and reps. I found out, that chin ups are simpler for me if I do strand workout before that day. Also, place I do them provide me possibillity of lot of hand positions so I can experiment with that type of excercises. Also, bars are thinner there (football gate with bars instead of netting) - another simplying factor.

If I compare chinning with strand workout of lats (ODP, rows, FCHP) - it seems to me, that strands are easier fot body and simpler to recover from than chin ups. I don´t know if results from chin ups are better for my goal than from strands (health + body building) but its good feel to be able perform more than one chin up and so far I enjoy that excercise.

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#12 [url]

Jan 24 16 2:43 PM

I have found strands a much better alternative to the pull-up bar for me so I stopped doing them. I injured my right shoulder bicep tendon many years ago doing pushups. Since then I found that chin ups aggravated that shoulder as well. Probably the lowest position doing most of the damage. I have hardly ever done pull-ups because they always felt very odd. I stopped doing chins a few years ago and since then I have not had any shoulder problems, I did get an ache in the shoulder a day after I did some chins at a customer's house were working on. The carpenter had just fitted a pull-up bar for him and the customer got us all to do chins etc on it. He seemed to be hoping that at least one out of the three of us was less capable on the bar than he was but we all outdid him and then my labourer started doing sit ups while hanging from the bar by his feet so the games stopped there
Anyway, back to the story. My shoulder was aching a little the next day. Chins also used to cause me wrist problems. No aches but I had less control with my hands. It wasn't really noticeable until I would spin a hammer or trowel in my hand and would often drop it. I stopped the chins and this was no longer a problem.

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#13 [url]

Feb 25 16 2:33 PM


So... I don´t do push ups and pull ups/chin ups so often as I did when I start my goal of adding numbers to that excercises maximums.

But. As I stretch chest expander and supplement it with few bodyweight fitness sets of chin ups, my numbers of excercises with vertical pulling motion goes slowly up.
My last chin ups max was 8 reps (2 last reps with not so good form) and 4 tactical pull ups.
Maybe not so great numbers, but for me that´s huge change (I was able to do this last, when I was very slim when I was 16 years old. Few last years I was able to do no rep to 3 reps when I did powerlifting - I am same weight now when I lift.
I can do simply 20 push ups (so I think max would be 30, maybe more) - so better results in this too (I don´t do lot of push ups anymore - I think this strength comes now mainly from Back press a triceps activation with expander).

So I´m slowly improving (strange is that my expander numbers of strands and reps I could do don´t go up) with not so focused diet (I try to eat few times a day, but I wouldn´t concider my meals and snacks as focused on bodybuilding, more for survey).
I´m working out (or stretch expanders) every other day (or with two days off - it depends).

Hovewer, I would like to focus more now on bodyweight excercises (and do more squats and leg work).

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#14 [url]

Feb 26 16 2:15 AM

Brad Reid wrote:
So, when one chins and the hands remain in a fixed position, because they can't rotate, this opposed to chinning on rings or a free handle, I sort of think that it binds the biceps tendons a bit sometimes leading to tendonitis.
This has definitely been my experience. I always "felt" both pullups and chinups more in my forearms than in my biceps, or even my lats.

7-8 years ago I developed golfer's elbow from doing weighted pullups, and I still get flare-ups from time to time.

These days when I do pullups (not very often), I keep the reps down to no more than 5 (but do multiple sets) and use parallel bars or rings. Occasionally I will test myself on "normal" pullups, and my elbows are always sore the day after.

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#15 [url]

Feb 26 16 4:59 PM

Doing lots of pull-ups in the past also caused golfers elbow issues with me. Even now several years later I can't do a pull-up or even a regular bicep curl without causing pain. Pushing exercises are fine but any bent arm pulling I have to be very cautious with. It was this issue and reading the posts on this forum that first lead me to expander training. Initially as a way of working my back with straight arms thus eliminating elbow issues, but after using the hook strands and some straight tubing I now find that the majority of my exercise revolves around strands.

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