Muscle and Fitness -- The First Key To Achieving Your Goals

Written by Tony Farrell

Lets discuss what I term as 'Muscle and Fitness -- The First Key'

In a previous article, I went throughrepparttar 'Three Keys To Success' in any muscle and fitness regime that you use.

Remember -- 'BE - DO - HAVE'?

If you missed this article, you can get it here... Fitness Goal

If you've read it, here's just a very quick overview of what it was about:

1. Decide what you want to HAVE. What are your goals?

2. Decide whatrepparttar 137427 necessary steps are, that you must DO to reach those goals.

3. Choose what you need to BE. What do you need to become in order to DO what is necessary to HAVE what you want?

If you are at all confused about this article, please re-read it, and again if necessary. You've really got to get this right so that you can succeed in anything you choose to do, including achieving any sort of success with your fitness goals.

Assuming you understandrepparttar 137428 concept I've just discussed, here arerepparttar 137429 ten most important steps ofrepparttar 137430 'HAVE' key:

1. Get out a note pad and pen. Lets namerepparttar 137431 very top ofrepparttar 137432 page 'Muscle and Fitness Goals'.

2. Writerepparttar 137433 day and date just belowrepparttar 137434 title.

3. Decide what your ultimate fitness goal is. When all is said and done, what is it that you really want to have out of your Muscle and Fitness regime? What is that end result that you're trying so hard to get? Write it down.

4. It's not enough to want just one thing, because you won't feel justified in doing something well if that's all there is to it. So lets justify it. Are there other benefits that you want your training program to achieve? This isrepparttar 137435 time to think. Just think about what you want.

For example, it could be to become more aerobically fit and lose weight, while increasing your lean muscle, increasing your confidence and building up your joints. Think ofrepparttar 137436 benefits that you'd like to have as a result of your training routine, as well asrepparttar 137437 ultimate goal in '3' above. Write them down.

5. Take your time. Don't rush it. Just review what you've written so far. Is everything you want to 'HAVE' written in your note pad?

If so, great. If not, then continue to write your goals. Do this until you just can't think anymore, or until your head hurts.

6. Now just leave everything alone and go about your daily routine. Forget about what you've just written for a few days. Just give yourself a break. You can come back later on to your muscle and fitness Have key.

7. After a few days, I want you to look through what you've written. Some of you will only have a few lines done, while others may have written an essay. Either way is good. Just read it again.

The Degradation of Fitness Science: One Example

Written by Brian D. Johnston

In an article by a well known "functional/core exercise" proponent, there is an attempt to affiliaterepparttar concepts of microscopic life ofrepparttar 137418 amoeba with human cellular processes, and "functional training" whenrepparttar 137419 author claims: "Movement, survival andrepparttar 137420 optimal functioning ofrepparttar 137421 organism all go hand in hand." This statement opens a door forrepparttar 137422 author as he links "movement" with "function," together withrepparttar 137423 concept of "optimal." He then claims that there is a link between functional exercise and survival, as confirmed historically byrepparttar 137424 "fact" that when exercise needs are not met (too much, too little, an absence orrepparttar 137425 wrong kind), then "disease lurks!Ē Certainly lack of activity or too much activity (excess strain) can pose negative results, but here he links "the wrong kind" of exercise to that of disease or ill health.

After addressing how natives achieved functional fitness through hunting practices,repparttar 137426 author then discussed ancient methods of yoga, Tai-Chi, and then martial arts, connectingrepparttar 137427 concept of "functional exercise" with improving health and vitality ofrepparttar 137428 mind and body, to improve "manís relationship with both external and internal nature." This concept has now opened a second door forrepparttar 137429 authorís "brand" of functional training and to denounce methods that are different.

Apparently, according torepparttar 137430 author, todayís concept of exercise (particularly bodybuilding) is wrong, since many methods confirm to Newtonian thinking to produce an "isolationistsí/reductionistsí point of view," in that we think of only single muscles and notrepparttar 137431 body as a whole. Rather, what we need is "system integration." This would mean whole-body movement/participation of some kind. However, bodybuilders do considerrepparttar 137432 look ofrepparttar 137433 body as a whole, and many exercises performed take into account body coordination (or, at least,repparttar 137434 coordination of several muscles).

Evenrepparttar 137435 use of a single-joint exercise machine causes its user to contract many muscles in an attempt to bracerepparttar 137436 body and to generate greater body coordination as muscular fatigue is reached. Further ignored isrepparttar 137437 fact that it may be necessary to focus oneís attention on a single muscle (for reasons of balancing development or function). And, by doing so, this improvesrepparttar 137438 system as a whole as muscles are able to work and integrate better in more dynamic activities, i.e., by strengtheningrepparttar 137439 weakest link.

The author claims thatrepparttar 137440 exercise machine industry also is at fault, as it breaksrepparttar 137441 body into separate parts or muscle groups to be worked in isolation, "building on peopleís aesthetic desires rather than functional needs." It is well known that no muscle can work in complete isolation, as stated inrepparttar 137442 paragraph above. Nonetheless, exaggeration is obvious in that many machines do train multiple muscles, such as pulldowns, machine deadlifts and squats, leg presses, chest presses, and shoulder presses, or that a person can train for aesthetics as well as function. If a personís biceps can produce 50% more force as a result of machine or dumbbell biceps curls that served to increase both mass and strength, certainly that personís bicepsí function has improved, and this has an influence on full body functional ability.

The author then claims that those who succumb to modern isolationist exercise methods and influence suffer higher incidence of injury. What proof does he offer? None. Conversely,repparttar 137443 author does not reference activities that producerepparttar 137444 highest forces (and greatest potential for injury), such as explosive lifting, Olympic lifts, and plyometrics. In fact, he does endorse Olympic lifting and plyometrics (within reason) since they apparently mimic "natural" movement better. He also recommendsrepparttar 137445 higher risk of Swiss ball exercises, with an attempt to balance and control weights in an unstable environment. I do not recallrepparttar 137446 last time a person needed to clean and jerk an object, jump multiple times off boxes (sometimes with loads onrepparttar 137447 shoulders), or to balance oneís self on a ball in activities of daily living. Consequently, how do those activities mimicrepparttar 137448 "natural" movements of walking, lifting items offrepparttar 137449 ground (carefully), climbing stairs, orrepparttar 137450 unique and specific mechanics of various sporting activities (outside Olympic lifting)?

The author continues by stating that there is limited value in isolationist exercise approaches, which is why there is such a divergence toward Tai-Chi and other "integrated" systems. It should be obvious that any approach is limited in value (since everything inrepparttar 137451 Universe is finite), and that includes Tai-Chi, which does a poor job of optimizing muscular strength and muscle development, two key aspects that support "function" as we age. From my perspective, people tend to diverge toward Tai-Chi because it is an easy means of activity, and is more of a means of meditation and relaxation than exercise. In any event, it has been established that greater muscular loading and functional improvement can be had with stable exercises as opposed to unstable Swiss ball exercises. This only makes sense since so much more effort is directed toward balance (and paranoia of falling) during unstable exercises, together with less weight and effort onrepparttar 137452 target muscles. However, those aspects are ignored byrepparttar 137453 author.

Now, for an exercise system to be "functional," it should meetrepparttar 137454 authorís criteria:

1. It must support and improve life. Chronic (regular?) exposure to "training to failure" is not a good thing inrepparttar 137455 authorís eyes and serves only to "extinguish vitality." It is ironic that many individuals (including yours truly) has trained in this manner for many years, are strong, physically developed and feel a great deal of vitality. It is not training to muscular fatigue that isrepparttar 137456 problem, butrepparttar 137457 overall demands that one is exposed to, including too much volume and frequency. Nonetheless, training to failure and believing in "no pain, no gain," according torepparttar 137458 author, "results in dysfunctional exercise and less functional people." The idea of "no pain, no gain" is exaggerated, although well meaning at one point inrepparttar 137459 history of exercise (to get people to exercise harder). However, if a person can increase strength and muscle to a greater degree (or even torepparttar 137460 same degree) by training to failure (without abusing exercise in general), how would that result in less functional people? How does greater/improved function = less function?

The author concludes by stating: "the by-product of modern bodybuilding and these types of training mottos is a new culture of fitness without health." Suffice it to say that a person can be healthy without partaking in a regular fitness program. "Healthy" generally means free from disease. And needless to say that an intense exercise program that improves blood cholesterol, blood pressure, resting heart rate, cardiovascular endurance, heart resilience, strength, muscle, and ADL function certainly is "fitness with health." Moreover,repparttar 137461 term "fitness" means "the quality or state of being fit," and "fit" means "to be well adapted or suitable for" (Oxfordís English Dictionary). Partaking in a fitness program, to become "fit" (although some are better than others) will result in positive health changes, even if a method happens to be one of aesthetics primarily, i.e., bodybuilding.

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