Thursday, September 19, 2013


Remember what they say about teachers and doers? Those who can, do; those who can’t teach… well, I’ve come to the conclusion that I can’t, so I might as well keep on teaching…

It’s been a while since I lay a wager with my friends that I was going to get a six pack and uncountable extensions on the original date later, I’m still looking for them in them in the mirror, feeling for them under the tee or the shirt and a little layer that keeps swelling up like bread in an oven every time I whittle it down to near nothing.

So I guess I really can’t eh?
But all that searching for the right way, the best way, the quickest way, the surest way and so on, sure gave me a lot of plans to play with.. And while walking the walk has had its own share of hitherto insurmountable hurdles, talking the talk should be a whole lot easier…

So while I’m still running on that treadmill to nowhere ab nauseam, let me give you a quick peek into all that I found and my top tries for getting to good health, super fitness and someday that six pack package… No promises here, let me warn you…

Just my thoughts on what might work best in the long run..

So without further ado, let’s begin with the countdown to the best fitness workouts (according to admittedly an armchair pundit but one who oft en, though not oft en enough, does push-ups on the arms of the very same arm-chair) that could keep you fit and strong even as the metabolism slows down and the years run away before you seem to be able to catch ‘em…

First and therefore last but definitely not the least on this countdown is… put your hands together for the king of strength sport and a favourite with ageing gym rats with testosterone issues and aslopecia… the sport for true blue strength athletes -
At number 10 on the countdown…

I must apologize for my earlier comment about alopecia and testosterone. Who knows, I might be donning those tights and rubbing chalk on what might be by then, my massively thighs, on my way to a record deadlift . And I hope to have issues with neither at the time. A perfectly legitimate way to extreme strength, powerlifting training, the way of the big three, the bench-press, the dead-lift and the squat, is perhaps every human being’s surest path to finding and enhancing the limits of one’s strength potential.

And strength, unlike other athletic components like speed or agility, at least on the basis of anecdotal evidence, seems to be the last to fade. That is why a lot of Masters (above 40) level competitors post numbers not too far away from the big guys in the open category.

Joe Brodski, the 2009 United States record holder in the Masters 60-64 year olds category with a 315 lb lift at 220 lbs bodyweight is living proof that power lift ing has its perks.

“It (powerlifting) keeps my cholesterol and blood pressure down and I’m able to keep up with the kids at work”, says the tough graybeard who is twice as strong as most men half his age.

But while powerlifting is great for sagging muscle bellies, it is a sport that chases an extreme ideal, that of strength and more strength and nothing else and so it has its limitations in terms of enhancing all aspects of ‘fitness’.

And so at number nine, we have close cousin to the big lift sport, and everyone’s usual suspect for picking a path to the six-pack, bis-tris and bubble butt nirvana, the body-building workout at yonder gym.

In theory, workouts inspired by the body-builder’s goal of well defined muscles and a ripped look with low body fat is pretty much an ideal and balanced training plan. The focus is as much on a well rounded diet as it is on strength and cardiovascular training. If practiced in moderation, it is pretty close to what might be the perfect plan.

Seventy-one year old three time Mr. Olympia, Frank Zane, 82 year old five-time Mr Universe, Bill Pearl and 76 year old Masters bodybuilding champion and fitness author are living testimony to the power of weight training done right. For one who knows one’s body and its limitations, this method is as good as the ones at the top of this list.

But what keeps this method at nine on the list is the high degree of caution that one has to exercise because training with weights is a tight rope walk fraught with many dangers where either ego or ignorance could lead one down a path splintered with broken bones, worn out joints, torn ligaments and slipped discs. Added to that are the temptations of over-supplementation, an underground steroid culture and extreme diet plans that oft en sacrifice good health on the altar of vanity.

And so with its baggage of physiological and psychological red zones, body-building workouts, despite their innumerable benefits could climb no higher than number nine on this count down.

Next week, we will explore four more workout plans on this countdown, their virtues and their dangers and the shape of the ideals that one might reflect through bodies dedicated to these plans.

But don’t wait for me folks. Just because my dreams seem to take a while to bake is no reason for you to slacken off … so train on…

Now, where was I…? Ah yes… 1091… 1092… ..1093… phew… so see you.. 1094… at the end of this set..1095..and the week…!


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