Back To The Source Of Equipment (Part 2)

source water river

I read a Nerd Fitness articles  and I learned good stuff.

If you didn’t read the part 1, click here

Racks Et Machines

To do squat, there are differents equipements, we name it « racks ». Let’s go.

Squat stands

squat stands

It’s 2 pieces standing, next to each other to hold the Olympic bar. It’s handy because it’s portable and you can do squat outside. But in a gym, it’s not great because you can’t put heavy weights, it’s too fragile.

Squat rack

squat rack

It’s 2 bars that are standing tied with horizontal bars. With the Squat racks, you can put heavy weights.

Power rack

power rack

It’s my favorite. It looks like a large rectangle with poles in vertical and horizontal. The Power racks have holes for placing J-hooks to adjust the height of Olympic bar. What is cool is that you can do several exercices with like pull-up, bench press, overhead press and dips.

Smith machine

smith machine

Smith machine looks like Squat racks except that the bar is guided.

Gym staff will tell you that it’s a machine to do squat safe. I don’t advise to use this machine because it forces your body to make unnatural movements. This scientific study (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19855308 ) shows that you have better results with a squat with free weights.

The difference between Squat racks and Smith machine is that the bar where you put weights is fixed on Smith machine.

Weight machine

plate loaded machine weight pin loaded stack machine weight

Weight machines are in 2 categories : Pin loaded (stack machine) and Plate loaded. Pin machines have a rectangular weight stack with a hole to put the pin. More the pin is low, more the weight is heavy to lift. What is cool with this machines is that you don’t need to look for weights anywhere in the gym.

With Plate loaded, there is no weights attached to the machine. You put weights on the machine yourself. Plate loaded machines have a wider range of motion than Pin loaded.

Cable machine

cable machine

No matter the size or design of the cable machie, it will always be a pin loaded (stack machine). A handle is at the end of the cable and you can pull or push in different directions. Cable machine can be an alternative for some exercices you do with dumbbells or barbells. Cable machine has a wider range of motion.

Pull-up Bar

pull up bar

You know in most gyms, there is no real pullup bar (like in my gym). If you don’t find a freestanding bar, there are several alternatives like power rack, smith machine or the top of the cable machine.

Dips station

dips station

Usually dips station is integrated into the power rack or the cable machine. You can find some that are freestanding.

Assisted Pullup /Dip station

assisted pull up

It’s a Pin loaded (stack machine). You choose a weight and you put yourself on the platform. The weight you choose will help you to do pullups or dips. For pullups, I advise you to do Lat pulldown and the day where you can lift your bodyweight, you do freestanding pullup.

Bench

adjustable bench

Ajustables benches and standard flat benches are types of benches you will see in a gym. To do incline and decline exercices, ajustable bench is perfect. Benches are the equipement the most use in a gym, especially on Monday. I don’t know why but Monday is the international chest’s day and it’s hard to find a bench that day.

Bench press

bench press

Squat stand and Squat rack are use to do bench press in small gyms and Crossfit. In big gyms, there are special bench press with a stand attached.

Equipement items

Now you know the main gym’s equipment, I will show you small equipement items.

Collars/Clips

collar clip

There are several collars/clips designs but they have the same purpose that is to keep weights safe on the bar.


Weight plates

weight plate

There are several type of plates :

  • Standard metal plates/ rubber encased weight plates

    They’re made of metal and they shouldn’t be thrown to the ground. There are circle with the denomination of weight on. Depending on the weight, they have different diameters.

  • Bumper plates

    They’re made of rubber and can be thrown to the ground for above your head (clean and jerk).

Plates can have a denomination in kilograms or pounds :

Kilogramme : 1, 1.5, 2, 2.5, 5, 10, 15, 20 et 25kg

Pound : 2.5, 5, 10, 25 ou 45lbs.

You can also find plates with a combination of metal and rubber that can be thrown to the ground but not from aboe you head.

Kettelbells

kettelbell

This is looks like a cannon balls with handles. Most gym don’t have the same weight repertoire than dumbells but it’s possible to find kettelbells of 24kg (53lbs) and 31.75 (70lbs) and more.

GHR/GHD Machine

ghr ghd machine glute ham raise developer

The translation is « Glute Ham Raise » or « Glute Ham Developer ». With this you can do glute ham raise, back extension or sit ups.

Prowler/Dragging sled

prowler dragging sled

Put weights on a prowler and push or pull while you run.

Strongman equipment

strongman kegs yokes hammers tires atlas stone

If you don’t intend to make a strongman competition, kegs, yokes, hammers, tires and atlas stones are good to do from time to time.

Plyo Boxes

plyo Boxe

These boxes have several size. You jump on and off of.

Bands

band

Those are big rubber bans to work mobility and speed lifts.

Gear

It’s funny because people ask me often : « What do I wear ? ». I noticed in gyms, it’s often a fashion show. It’s for this reason beginners are impressed. Unless you have an injury, clothes don’t matter. When I started, I took some clothes that I rarely used and I always do that. Sometimes I see people with cool clothes and I say to myself : « Wow, I have to buy it » and when I see theirs performances I say to myself : « Pffff, show-off ! ».

Clothing

Gym isn’t a fashion show. You’re not going to win a prize because you’re well dressed. We’re here to sweat so wearing comfortable clothes. You know, my clothes and shoes are torn and the funny thing is that people ask me, if they can train with me because they see my body evolve.

Shoes

squat deadlift shoes classic converse chuck taylor all star

It’s important to have a good pair of shoes to do deadlift and squat. A good pair of shoes allows you to put your weight on your heels to be as stable as possible. Running shoes don’t allow you to do this because their soft soles. If you don’t have the budget for this type of shoes, the classic Converse Chuck Taylor All Star works well and is what many top powerlifters still wear.

Personally I use my Converse Chuck Taylor All Star for my strenght training and my Puma to run.

Gloves

Gloves are used to protect hands from callouses. At the beginning, I wore gloves and I still had callouses and sometimes my hands slipped inside gloves because of the sweat. I notices that gloves could also mess up your grip and technique. I don’t use gloves and I don’t recommand to have gloves.

Knee/Wrist wraps

knee wrist wraps

Wraps allow you to have support and stability when you lift heavy weights (squat/deadlift).

Straps

straps

Straps allow you to hold the bar longer in your hands. Straps are wrapped around the bar which relives your grip. It’s excellent for intermediate and advanced lifters. Beginners don’t need to use it.

Weightlifting Belt

weightlifting belt leather weightlifting belt velcro

There are 2 type of weightlifting belt : leather or velcro. It’s very usefull for intermediate and advanced lifters. I use my weightlifting belt only for deadlift and squat.

Stop, stop, stop, I see you start to worry about buyiing all this. Don’t panic, the most important thing to have is a good pair of shoes to get started. It’s simple, let’s go my friend.

Whats’s the biggest mistake you made when you started lifting ?

Share this article if you think it can help someone you know. Thank you.

-Steph

Calories Are Good Or Bad

calories

I read a Nerd Fitness article and there is good stuff.

In the world of nutrition, we can find contradictory things. It depends of the point of view of people about food :

  • I’m Paleo and I eat only meat, vegetables, fruits and nuts.

  • My diet is based on my macros (protein, carbs, fats). Paleo is ridiculous.

  • Fool, a calorie is a calorie. You can lose weight by eating less.

  • I have a good physique and I eat pizza. I’m weird

Each person has his/her vision about « eat healthy ». It for this reason that this theme is confused with a lot of contradictory scientific studies.

What’s this

what's this

A calorie is a unit of energy

This is the equalent of 4.184 absolute joules (that is different of 1.21 gigawatts.

Here what is means : 1 calorie of food is equivalent to 1 kilocalorie that is the amount of energy required to increase the temperature of 1gr of water from 15C° to 16C°.

In a certain way we can say that a calorie is a calorie but what is interrests us is « does different kind of calorie affect our body differently ? »

  • Is what 1000 calories of cookies is the same as 1000 calories of grass-fed steak and vegetable ?

  • Does our body treat these foods differently or it’s only energy in and energy out ?

  • Does the type of food affect our body other than just to lose weight and gain muscle ?

These questions create a lot of debates and on internet everything is amplified with people who show scientific studies. Internet is good to debate but we’ll go deeper.

First step

first step

It doesn’t matter the « nutritional philosophy » you have, but something is obvious. How you eat is responsible of 80-90 % of your success ou your failure.

You can improve you cardiovascular heath by running a lot but if your goal is to transform your body, how you feed your body will play an important rôle.

Training (exercices) have a role of support of maintenance of the body.

When we talk about pure weight loss, eat less calories that you burn each day is the key of the equation.

But we want do everything to avoid to have heart disease and diabetes. It for this reason we need to focus on the food’s type that we eat and the amount of food that we eat.

Calories are equal to loss weight

equal

A person eat around between 3000 and 3500 calories per day of everything he/she wants. And now, he/she wants to lose weight.

This person decides to eat 2200 calories per day by eating less. This person doesn’t change what he/she eat but change proportions.

This person see that he/she loses weight, it’s good and it’s possible that he/she feels unhappy because he/she decreased drastically his/her normal amount of calories. Yet, it’s a good step in the right direction.

When we consume on average less than 500 calories per day, we burn 500 calories that we have in excess in our body. We can combine this with exercice and we can lose aound 0.45kg (1lb) of body mass per week.

As quoted on Examine.com , « a net negative energy balance…is responsible for weight loss ».

You noticed, it says « lose weight » and not « lose fat ».

It’s at this point that the big problems begin. People eat less and it’s enough for them.

We know our body react differently to certain types of food like sugar. Certain food fill the stomach more than other without have a lot of calories (vegetable). And others fill us less the stomach with a lot of calories (soda, cookies and candy).

Remember that all processed foods are scientifically created so that you are always lacking this type of food as a drug addict.

Use small plates is very effective to help to eat less. A study from Cornell University  found that if they gave people a large tub or a medium tub of popcorn, and then gave them stale popcorn, the size of the tub mattered far more than the staleness of the popcorn in determining how much people ate !

We’re not rational creatures. Some food are dense in calories and low in nutrients and make us hungry all day.

Compared to a diet of vegetables and meat, it’s the opposite. It’s food low in calories and dense in nutrients and we have a sensation of satiety. Which make it easier the reduction of calories to lose weight.

If you have a lot of weight to lose, eat less to start to be in the good direction.

Now if you want an athletic body, it’s a little bit different. There is 2 type of food that affect the composition of our body and our athletic performances.

Eating for health and success

health success

To have an athletic body, you must take care about your macros (a certain amount of fats, carbs and protein).

It’s clear that 100 grams of vegetables carbohydrates is not equal to 100 grams of candy :

  • Consideres that sweets and processed food are created for you to eat and buy more like a drug addict.

  • Look the difference of micronutrients between vegetables and candy

  • Pay attention of your energy after eating vegetables and sweets/candy. With which you have the most energy ?

We searching a way to eat that allow us to have a good look/appearence and to feel good. A diet that takes us away from the hospital and allows us to enjoy life.

Look, if you like the idea to eat less but you don’t like the idea to count calories and macros each day, you can hack something. Stay focus on a type of food : Real food !

Instead to count calories

At each meal, have 1-2 vegetables in your plate (or the half of the plate) and have a great source of protein.

Not aim to lose weight for a few weeks

Track your calories and macros for few days or 1 week to analyze what you eat. Take note, note the size of portions and do the total of the quantity of the day. This allows you to plan your meals during the day and during all the year.

We know that eat less and to more physical activity, help us to lose weight and we are still overweight. Eat less isn’t a permanent solution because there is also the element of behavioral psychology.

Real food

It’s simple, our body is a complex machine. And even if a calorie is a calorie is a simple equation to lose weight, each « health » factor can be affected by the quality and nutrients of this calorie.

For this reason, I want you eat real foods, decrease sugar and think long term (new habits) rather than the 12-weeks formulas.

What methods you used and that didn’t work ?

What are your goals ?

-Steph

P.S. Do you want a free training program ? Click here 

Old school Meilleur Que La New School

old school vs new school

« Nouvelle entraînement conçu pour tes abdos et tes obliques ! »

« Un supplément révolutionnaire qui augmente ta perte de graisse ! »

« Cette récente découverte sur l’optimisation des performances que les scientifiques n’ont pas envie que tu saches ! »

Ces choses me font rires ! Avec les découvertes scientifiques, il y a tous les jours des nouveaux programmes d’entraînement et des nouveaux équipements pour avoir une meilleure condition physique encore jamais connu auparavant.

Ces produits et systèmes ne sont pas créés pour que tu sois en meilleur santé, ils sont créés pour augmenter ton insécurité sur ton corps et faire gagner plus d’argent aux entreprises. C’est comme essayer d’attraper un nuage.

Je vais partager avec toi la vérité sur le fitness grand public moderne et t’encourager à voir à travers cette merde et commencer à penser old school.

C’est le moment de penser comme Makunouchi Ippo

hajime no ippo Makunouchi Ippo

« Grâce aux découvertes scientifiques les performances humains sont à un niveau records et la technologie a amélioré nos vies. »

Oui, c’est vrai je suis d’accord avec ça.

Les technologies ont facilité nos vies avec les applications comme Zombie Run ! pour courir plus vite, Evernote ou JeFit pour suivre nos programmes d’entraînement et Fitbit pour suivre tes pas dans la journée.

Par contre, il faut comprendre l’importance de la vraie vie, sans les percées technologiques et avoir du succès avant de commencer à chercher une technologie pour assister tes performances.

Tu penses que les nouveaux habits de sport hi-tech t’aide à augmenter tes performances ? Ton T-shirt t’aide à soulever plus lourd ?

Des exemples de Old School qui démonte la New School :

  • Les Ewoks avec leurs techniques de combats old school battent l’Empire sur la lune d’Endor
  • La crème glacé à l’ancienne contre la nouvelle crème glacé « faible en graisse » (qui contient beaucoup plus de sucre)
  • Le bœuf nourri à l’herbe contre le bœuf nourri aux grains
  • Les films originaux des Tortues Ninja contre la merde de Michael Bay
  • Le Break Dance Old School plutôt que le Twerk
  • C’est le moment de revenir à la Old School et quand les problèmes arrivent, te demander qu’est ce que ton héros préféré ferait ?

Quel type de solutions old school tu veux ajouter dans cette bataille contre le non-sense de la new school ?

-Steph