It’s always a good idea to strengthen your core muscles as much as you can. Core exercises strengthen your underlying muscle tissue and can help to prevent injuries.
When doing a sandbag strength training routine, you’re engaging your core muscles with almost every movement. Even if the exercise itself is not entirely focused on core strengthening.
A sandbag shifts it’s center of gravity constantly. Which feels different and often more difficult when compared to traditional weights. Also, by switching between different types of sandbag fillers, you can add diversity to your workout.
Sandbag Training Doesn’t Require Much Space
Barbells, plates, machines, and squat racks can all take up a lot of space. If you want to improve your strength, using sandbags for weight training is not only affordable, but they also require very little space. This makes them perfect for home gyms and home workouts where you can have a flexible way of working on your strength whenever you feel like it.
You can also take them anywhere. So if you ever find yourself somewhere lacking exercise equipment, for example when traveling, then getting a sandbag could be the answer!
Sandbag workouts are not only effective but also versatile. You can use them for almost any type of exercise.
They can be used for traditional compound exercises such as squats, bench press, power cleans, deadlifts, and more. And because sandbags are soft, they have a low impact on your joints and you can perform less rigid movements.
There are exercises that are unique to sandbags such as the bear crawl; which are good for building stamina and working the core. There are also bear hug squats which are a good alternative to the front squat.
When it comes to cardio-related exercises, there are sandbag sprints and carries. These are not only high-intensity but they also heavily work the legs.
In a similar way you might use a wobble board for stability and balance, this sort of training can also be developed with a sandbag. You can even combine the two for a crazy stability building session. This work with unstable objects can be useful for many sports.
As you can see, sandbags can replace a lot of the equipment needed for most exercises.
Sandbags Come In Different Types
No matter which level you are in your fitness or strength training, you’ll find that there is a sandbag to accommodate your needs. Some bags can weigh up to 400 pounds; which are perfect for those wanting to gain serious strength.
You can also choose from different material qualities, the number of handles, and sizes.
As mentioned earlier, it’s possible to use different filler weights; you can add or remove them accordingly to suit different workouts. This makes them perfect for CrossFit routines where different exercises are performed in a single session.
Pricier sandbags can be water-resistant and withstand heavy-duty usage. With all the different sandbags available on the market, you shouldn’t have a problem finding one that can suit your level of fitness and your exact requirements.
Various Strength Training Variables
When compared to weight training, using a sandbag offers an excellent range of training variables to enhance your strength. Your body’s position, holding position, and the plane of motion can have a larger scale by using a sandbag when compared to traditional weights.
For example, there are around 11 positions to hold a sandbag versus only four positions when using a barbell. There’s a whole list of possibilities of training variables when you use sandbags.
These ways of lifting sandbags and making changes to your body’s position can alter how an exercise feels and the results that come afterward.
Also, planes of motion with a sandbag, such as shoulder squats, rotational lunges, and lateral drags, can make your strength training more elaborate and progressive.
Sandbag training can be a game-changer for your strength training routine. Depending on your fitness level, there is a lot of gym equipment that a weighted bag can replace.
As we’ve discussed, there are so many exercises that are possible with one training bag.
Progressing your strength training is very achievable using heavy sandbags. And if you want a versatile workout that you can perform almost anywhere, then a sandbag is a fantastic option!
We are all stuck at home these days and can’t even go to the gym because of social distancing. So, this is the perfect time to build a home gym for less than the price of a gym membership!
“YOU CAN’T BE SERIOUS”, you might yell.
Let me assure you, I am very serious about fitness and a home gym is one of the best ways to maintain your physique.
And yes, a home gym can not only cost less than a typical gym membership but also save you money in the long run.
A normal gym membership costs around $100 a month. This is for a gym that gives you good equipment and facilities. You can count the time and transport expenses on to that and it quickly balloons to a $1200 per year ordeal.
While this may not seem like a lot, especially if you are getting some quality equipment, that membership can’t be used in the lockdown.
Building a Home Gym
A home gym is not only convenient but it can help you stay fit even during Coronavirus. The best part is, it doesn’t even need to cost a lot.
You wake up, go to your home gym, do some quality exercises and that’s it. No need to wear masks and gloves to drive to the gym that is probably closed or only allowing a few people inside.
How to Build a Home Gym
Building a home gym for Coronavirus is not that hard. You just have to look for good equipment online and have it delivered at your place.
Get Used Equipment
Finding used equipment is going to save you a lot of money when building your home gym.
Sure, if you can afford new stuff, then it is all good. But usually used equipment is not only cheaper but also just about the same quality. Gym equipment is made with durability and reliability in mind. So if someone used the equipment responsibly, it should still be in top condition.
Just make sure the items are delivered to your home and wear protective gear when you receive them.
Get a Squat Rack
A squat rack is a good starting point. There are two types of squat racks; the full rack and the half rack. If you have a small space, get the best half racks. If you have ample area, get one of the best full squat racks.
Get a Bar
No, not the one that serves drinks. Get anOlympic barbell. Most are made out of incredibly strong materials and a used one won’t have any problems.
It takes only a few minutes to learn the proper foam rolling technique to relax your tight tendons and soft-tissues. So, let’s get started now on how to use a foam roller properly to increase joint mobility and decrease muscle pain and stress!
So, you can use it to aid in the mobility of tight tissues or just as a recovery technique.
Foam rolling has become very popular in recent years, but it has been around for decades. As it is an effective tool that helps to mobilize your joints by relaxing the soft tissues and muscles around them if done properly. But, the most important thing you need to know about foam rolling is that it is NOT a fix-all solution.
Foam rolling simply prepares your body to improve joint and muscle flexibility by relaxing any chronically tight tissues around them.
If a muscle is tight, or overactive, it will fight against any stretching you do for it. So, the foam roller can be used to help relax your muscle tissues in order to prepare them for other stretches.
Simply roll the foam roller up and down your muscles in a controlled manner to massage the muscle. This is a great way for beginners to start, as it is the least intense.
For a more effective self-myofascial release technique, attempt to crush your tissues lightly by rotating on them horizontally using controlled pressure. So, instead of rolling the roller up and down your muscles, keep the roller in place and roll your body side-to-side (perpendicular) along the same area. This will reach down deeper into the tissues.
Then move slightly up the muscle and do the same thing.
To properly break apart adhesions in your soft tissues, stop at points where you feel the most pain and relax the muscle into the roller.
Stay on that spot for at least 30 seconds at a time and breathe deep to let your muscles relax. Then slowly continue rolling over the entire muscle.
If no tightness or pain is felt in a certain area, then either use a firmer tool or move on. You will only feel pain where there is tightness. The same as a massage.
It is best for beginners to start with a soft roller, then upgrade to a firm roller. Preferably a solid PVC pipe or something similar.
I know that sounds like it hurts, and it does…at first. But it is the only thing that is truly going to work.
This is because, if the roller is less dense than your tissues, then it will break down and limit the amount of tissue release you can obtain.
Your tight tissues can only be fully released with dense objects that can break apart the adhesions. And anything made of foam just isn’t enough.
However, this also will increase the intensity of the message so you won’t need to use it as frequently. It’s the same as when you do high-intensity workouts, you need more time to recover.
What NOT To Get
When choosing your foam roller, make sure that you get one that does NOT have a bunch of spikes on it or “pressure points”. Though it may feel good, it is not nearly as useful as just getting a firmer object, like a PVC Pipe or Lacross Ball.
Remember, we want to smash over the muscle massaging everything, not just pinpoint it. That is what hand massages are for. And the fancy-looking rollers just don’t do as well.
Are you always tired, sore and lacking progress in the gym? If so, then you are likely not overtraining, but rather under-recovering! Because the biggest difference between overtraining and progress is how well you recover from your workouts. So here are the best post-workout muscle recovery tips for athletes and lifters that love to push it to the limit!
“It doesn’t matter what you can do in the gym, if you can’t recover from it.”
First, if you fail to recover properly after your workouts, then over time this can lead to overuse injuries, like tendonitis. These types of injuries can hold you back from progress in the gym and on the field. So, if you have an overuse injury, make sure you know how to recover from injuries properly.
Recovery is the most important part of every workout plan. Without proper recovery, all you are doing is breaking your body down. Recovery is where you build it back up.
So, to continuously get stronger and make progress, you need to not only work hard but recover hard too. And that all begins with knowing how to recover properly from your workouts.
Even with the best workout program, you will make little to no progress if you don’t recover properly. So, no workout is complete until you have recovered from it.
“No workout is complete until you have recovered from it.”
First, proper workout recovery starts as soon as the workout is complete. And the first step is finishing your workout with some mobility work. As in stretching and/or foam rolling for at least 10 minutes to help keep your muscle and joints healthy, while preventing injury. Remember, a healthy muscle is both strong and flexible, so don’t skip out on this part.
Next, and most important, is sleep. Without proper sleep, your body cannot function properly. Let alone rebuild and grow after a hard workout.
Your body grows, and recovers, when you’re asleep, not when you are awake. You can refill your depleted fat and glycogen stores (muscle fuel) while you’re awake, but you can only grow and repair your muscles while you are asleep.
And how much sleep you need depends on many factors. Everyone is different and requires a different amount of sleep to recover from everyday life or the additional stress of exercise. However, we can set some general standards that fit most individuals in given categories and you can adjust from there.
How Much Sleep Do You Need?
Kids and Teens: Most kids and teens require between 8-10 hours of sleep while growing. They have the largest range of sleep time because everyone grows at a different rate. You can assume those that grow faster or do the most activity need more sleep than those that are less active and slow to grow.
Adults: The average adult needs 7-8 hours of sleep just to perform normally without additional activity or exercise. Women require a little less sleep than men, which may be due to men generally being larger in size.
If you workout: Those that workout regularly will need an additional 30-60 minutes of sleep after every training day, depending upon the overall intensity or work volume.
Athletes: Athletes require 9-10 hours of sleep for full recovery due to their large workloads and intense training which places a lot of stress on their bodies.
These are general guidelines for sleep which can be adjusted depending upon how you feel. If you are still tired you (may need to go to sleep earlier, to get more quality sleep, or you) may need to increase your sleep time by 30 minutes.
Overall, sleep is the most important aspect of recovery as that is when your body rebuilds itself.
Next, nutrition is also a vital part of proper workout recovery. You need to eat enough food and get enough calories for your body to rebuild what it has lost during your workout. If you don’t, then you cannot recover fully, even with proper sleep.
For most people, eating a normal and balanced diet is enough to recover from a few weekly workouts. However, if you are an athlete or do any form of intense training, then you may need more nutrients for proper recovery. This may be as simple as an additional meal on workout days or larger meal portions throughout the day.
Now, many people believe that they need to take supplements in order to recover from any light to intense workout. This is not the case. Supplements can be helpful, but it is best to get your nutrients from food, rather than taking a bunch of supplements. Learn more >>
The Protein Myth
Myth:You need to get in at least 20-30g of protein within 30 minutes post-workout for proper recovery.
This is absolutely NOT TRUE and doesn’t even make sense. Remember, your body can only grow while you are asleep. And if you are taking protein immediately post-workout, it is going to be used as energy by the time you get to sleep. So, as long as you get enough protein, and other nutrients, throughout the day, you are set. Timing doesn’t matter that much. Also, it is always best to eat real food instead of taking supplements.
It is not only important that you get enough calories, but also the proper nutrients for your body to have the supplies needed for recovery. The main piece of this is protein. Though we do not need as much as many people believe.
Protein is the main building block for rebuilding and growing broken down tissue. Knowing this, those that break down tissue often, through exercise and other various activities, should consume slightly more protein than those that do not exercise regularly.
The average person needs 0.4-0.5g of protein per pound of bodyweight daily just to replace tissues lost during normal daily activity.
Those that exercise need more to replace and rebuild their tissues. Usually, that is 0.5-0.7g per pound of bodyweight daily. This may seem too low to what many people believe, but remember that this is just the bare minimum that you need for tissue replacement and recovery.
It is recommended that athletes and those that do strength training regularly, consume about 1g per pound of bodyweight daily. However, it is recommended that you do not exceed 1.5g per pound of bodyweight daily as this can place a lot of unnecessary stress on your body’s digestive system to metabolize it. Plus, protein makes for a bad energy source.
Realize, that your body can only build so much muscle mass per day. So, consuming excess protein will just add to your total calories for the day. Then it will either be used as a low energy source or stored as fat.
So, it is best to use carbohydrates (fast energy) and fats (slow long-lasting energy) as your fuel sources while using protein for its purpose of building.
Carbs and Fats
Carbs and fats are your body’s energy sources. However, they are both important for proper recovery.
Carbs help with hydration and give your body the energy it needs to both recover and perform. Fats help transport and store vital vitamins and minerals. Plus, they are a long-lasting energy source for endurance. So, you need a reasonable amount of each for the best results.
Active individuals should have 2-4g of carbohydrates per pound of bodyweight daily. And at least 0.25-0.5g per pound of bodyweight of fats to fill out your total caloric intake needs.
Most of your carbohydrate intake should be 1-2 hours before, during and after your workout for the day.
Vitamins and Minerals
Though your macronutrients (protein, carbs, and fats) are important for recovery, it is also vital that you get enough vitamins and minerals. These can be obtained through a healthy diet consisting of many fruits, vegetables, dairy and meat products. If you are lacking one of these categories of food, you need to find a way to include them more or replace the nutrients you are lacking through supplementation.
To help, you can take a daily multivitamin as a base amount of nutrients to give your body daily, but you should also be conscious of what you are eating and what nutrients you need more of.
Calcium + Magnesium
Sodium + Potassium
Calcium is important because you use it in every muscle contraction. Without calcium, your muscles, including your heart, would not be able to contract. Of course, it also helps increase bone density along with the added stresses of strength training.
Magnesium works with calcium, as a vital building block for our tissues and helps with muscular function.
Sodium and Potassium are two other vital electrolytes for workout recovery and performance. These electrolytes work together to regulate water in and out of cells and perform many other important functions within the body.
Part of getting enough nutrients for full recovery is hydrating. Without proper hydration, you are slowing down your recovery process and making it hard to absorb and transport the nutrients you need.
Also, you need to drink enough fluids to not only replace what you’ve lost but also excrete the waste. This is because every time you workout, you are breaking down tissue. And that tissue needs to be disposed of in some way. Most of it is excreted in your urine. Which is why it is so yellow post-workout.
If you only drink minimal amounts of fluid, then your body will use most of it to excrete the waste instead of rehydrating you.
To counter this, drink at least 0.7 times your bodyweight in ounces of water daily. And an additional 16 ounces for every 30 minutes you workout.
With proper sleep and nutrition, you can recover from all the stresses you place on your body and continue to progress in your training. Just make sure to get at least 8-9 hours of sleep every day, stay hydrated, eat enough calories, consume 1g of protein per pound of bodyweight, and get in all of your vitamins and minerals so that you can be recovered as much as possible before your next workout. This will ensure the best conditions for you to progress in your training.
The main purpose of the Daily 30 Bodyweight Exercise Routine is to teach you to stay committed to your strength, health, and fitness goals by helping you to develop the self-discipline you need to succeed in training and in life.
Just ask yourself…when is the last time you did something every single day for over a year to work towards your goals? Most people will say never and that is why most people never succeed.
So, be different! Be the one that does succeed! Then tell others how easy it is just by developing a little self-discipline.
I have done the Daily 30 for 1,468+ days in a row now (at the time of this post) and I plan to do it every day for the rest of my life.
Whether I was healthy, sore, sick, tired, injured, or just didn’t feel like it, I stuck to my commitment and that is the base of all my success in training and in life.
Just by making that simple commitment to myself I remember to always keep my goals on track, no matter how hard things get.
That is why I made The Daily 30! To help people stay committed to their goals every day.
Plus, the exercises are so simple anyone can do them! And it takes less than 3 minutes to do, allowing no room for excuses.
So, whether it be you or if you know someone that needs something to stick to this coming year, The Daily 30 is exactly what they need!
Think of it as the first step in making a commitment to yourself for a better, stronger and healthier future.