Lose the fat around the…

If you live in the Atlanta area and are looking to lose fat and inches around the midsection, belly, hips, thighs, or any other body pat I can help.

Through bodyweight exercises, weight lifting , and some hard work I can help you get the body you want and have imagined.

Send you contact info to weightworkout@yahoo.ca to get the help you deserve.

Atlanta Personal Training For Fat Loss of the THIGHS, HIPS, and STOMACH

Nutrition tip of the Week

Mood Eating

Most people eat based on their mood and/or some subjective feelings of hunger. They don't eat based on what their bodies need. Think of it this way: you're about to take a long drive on a stretch of highway with no gas station. Do you fail to stop for gas before you hit the road because you're 'not in the mood?' Of course not. Think of eating in the same way. Eating fuels your metabolic engine. So it's time to start feeling like eating so that you can stop feeling like you're scrawny. by Dr. John Berardi

SEE ALSO: This tip is sponsored by Precision Nutrition - our pick for the best nutrition and supplement resource currently available. Containing system manuals, gourmet cookbook, digital audio/video library, online membership, and more, Precision Nutrition will teach you everything you need to know to get the body you want -- guaranteed.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

How To Take Full Advantage Of Holiday

How To Take Full Advantage Of Holiday Eating and Weight Gain

'Tis the season to stuff yourself full of food! Find out
how to turn the tables and turn your holiday weight gain
into holiday muscle gain.

You know you're going to do it. You know you want to do it. It's what makes the holidays the holidays. What is it? Eating piles of holiday food.

This article is not about how to minimize holiday weight gain. That topic has been addressed many times before and will no doubt be addressed many more times to come. What I'm talking about here is how to use your increased holiday eating to your advantage in your training.

For many trainers (myself included), it's just no fun being good at the buffet table all the time. It's very easy to take the joy out of the holidays by restricting yourself too much.

I propose something different. Rather than forcing yourself to eat plain potatoes and dry turkey when your whole family is sitting down to a big holiday dinner, join in. I'm going to tell you how to make it work for you, not against you.

#1 - Forgive yourself in advance

If you're the type who feels guilty when you eat foods that aren't the greatest for you, try to set that aside. This is going to be a positive, guilt-free experience.

#2 - Reduce your calories BEFORE your big meals

By reducing your caloric intake before the big meals, it's much more likely that your body will use those excess calories to rebuild depleted stores rather than add to the ones that are already there. Don't starve yourself or your body will panic and try to store everything it gets as fat - just reduce.

#3 - Do a hard, heavy workout as close to mealtime as you can

Immediately after a hard workout, your body is desperate for raw materials to rebuild with. This effect lasts for about 3 to 4 hours. During this time, your body is primed for muscle growth. By doing your workout just before a big holiday dinner, all that food is going to go towards helping your body rebuild and recover from the workout. Very little, if any, of the excess calories you eat will be stored as fat under these conditions.

#4 - Try to focus on foods with some nutritional value

Feel free to load your plate with turkey and mashed potatoes. These foods have a great deal of nutritional value to a trainer. Don't hold back on them.

#5 - Increase your training volume

What this basically means is do more sets for each muscle group. You may have to decrease your rest periods or perhaps increase the number of training sessions you do in order to increase the volume but doing more sets (at least temporarily) will give your metabolism a kick-start. It will be especially effective if you're doing a fairly low volume training program before switching. Your body will be desperate for food to rebuild with and a big holiday meal is just what the doctor ordered.

#6 - Don't go to sleep after you eat

I know it's going to be hard but you're better off not napping after a big holiday meal. If you sleep, your body is more likely to store excess calories as fat, not muscle. It will also slow your metabolism down and you'll digest your food a lot slower. Relax, but if you can help it, don't sleep right away.

#7 - Schedule another heavy workout for the day after a big holiday meal

After loading yourself up with carbs, fat and protein, your body is a nutrient-filled growth machine. Take advantage of your loading by doing another high-volume, heavy workout the day after.

#8 - Take all the leftovers people are willing to give you

Stick to the more nutritious foods when you do this, such as meat, potatoes and vegetables. It beats cooking big meals for yourself for the next three days.

#9 - If you bring home desserts, save them for post-workout meals

Like I mentioned before, your body is primed for growth after a workout. Most desserts are filled with sugar. After a workout, your body will suck up this sugar just like any other carb and not store it as fat. In fact, it will increase your insulin levels and help you store protein in your muscles!

Putting these tips to work won't necessarily mean you won't gain some fat over the holidays but they can certainly help to minimize fat gain and maximize your muscle mass gains. Putting your overeating to work for you may not be pretty but it can be very effective!


Article from ~ Nick Nilsson online personal training company BetterU, Inc. He has a degree in Physical Education and Psychology and has been inventing new training techniques for more than 16 years. Nick is the author of a number of bodybuilding eBooks. He can be contacted at betteru@fitstep.com.

For more information send an email: weightworkout@yahoo.ca

Atlanta area Human Performance Coach
In home, gym, or park
Strength and Conditioning
Personal Training

Contact me hereContact me here

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Shoulder Pizza Presses

Weight Plate Pizza Presses for Shoulders

If you're looking for an effective new way to train your shoulders,look no further than the Pizza Press.
You won't be using a barbell, dumbbell or cable for this one...all you need is a weight plate!

When you read the description and see the pictures of this one in action, you'll know exactly where I got the name for it!

Basically, you're going to be doing what looks like a standard shoulder press movement. But here's the trick...instead of holding dumbbells or a barbell, you're going to be using a single weight plate.

So how do you press a weight plate? Well, you're going to use one hand to grab the plate and place it FLAT on top of your other hand so you're pressing with your palm.

Ever see a picture of a shot putter about to throw? THAT is the position the weight plate will be in - palm up, ready to shotput it across the room. As for the name of the exercise, think of the weight plate you're pressing as a pizza you don't want to drop on the floor as you're pressing it overhead.

This is a great exercise for the shoulders in that not only does it require strength, it requires balance in your hands, which also carries over to the shoulder. Pressing with your palm flat gives a whole different dimension to the shoulder press movement than gripping around a bar or dumbbell handle. You'll feel the difference from "normal" press where you're wrapping your hand around a handle or bar

This Pizza Press is an excellent variation for when you have shoulder pressing on your training schedule but you don't feel up for heavy pressing with regular free weights. You can get a GREAT shoulder workout with lighter weights with this one because of the instability and balance involved.

How To Do It:

As I mentioned previously, you're going to be doing a shoulder press exercise. And instead of using a barbell or dumbbells, you're going to use a single barbell weight plate. Obviously this puts limitations on how much weight you can use, but I found 45 lbs to be plenty, due to the nature of the exercise.

To use a 45 lb plate, you should be able to handle at least 70 lb dumbbells on the dumbbell shoulder press. If you can do 50's, start with a 35 lb plate. If you can do 35's, go with a 25 lb plate. If you can do less than 35's, start with a 10 lb plate.

You'll be doing this exercise in a standing position. Reach down and grab the plate around the lip with your left hand. Lift it up and place the PALM of your right hand on the smooth BOTTOM face. You want to be SURE you're placing your hand on the smooth, flat face to maximize the effect of this exercise. Be sure to watch the video (link below) to see exactly how to get the plate into position.

Note: your palm will be on the plate surface but your fingers will be slightly bent to allow you to exert pressure with your fingers to help balance the weight plate as you press it up.

Be careful with this exercise! Because you're not gripping anything (but relying on finger pressure to balance the plate) the chances of the plate moving around are greater. So do this one light the first time to get an idea of what you're doing. THEN you can move up in weight.

With your palm flat under it, get it to shoulder level - you'll look like a waiter serving a pizza (or a shotputter). Your other arm should be out to the side for balance. You should start at rock bottom, with the weight plate almost touching your shoulder - bring it to this point on every single rep as well (the weight plate all the way down almost to the shoulder).

Now press it up under control. As you press, you'll have to balance the weight plate on your palm using finger pressure. This makes it a bit tricky and tougher with the larger 45 lb plate (which is why you need to be somewhat stronger than being able lift only 45 lbs on dumbbell presses).

When you're done with one arm, grab the lip of the plate with your free hand and swing it back down to the ground. Switch hands, getting your left hand under the bottom of the plate this time.


1. Using too heavy of a weight plate

This exercise requires finger strength and balance. If you go too heavy, you won't be able to properly balance the plate. Start lighter than you think you'll need to and move up from there!

2. Letting the weight plate tilt too much

It can be tough to keep your palm flat through the entire movement but do your best. If you let the plate tilt too much, it'll make the plate harder to control - we don't want that pizza sliding off and we definitely don't want the weight plate falling!


1. Keep the non-working arm out to the side

This will help with balance - keeping your non-working arm out the side will work to counterbalance the weight plate on your working side.

2. Keep your fingers flexed/bent

It's important not to let your fingers spread out flat on the bottom of the weight plate. If they go flat, you'll lose control of the plate. Keeping your fingers flexed allows you to control the weight plate using finger pressure.


The Weight Plate Pizza Press is an excellent exercise for hitting the shoulders in a very unique way. The stabilizing factors required by the exercise put a whole different type of tension on the shoulders (and the hands!). It's a great option when you don't want to do barbell and dumbbell shoulder pressing. See pictures and video of this exercise.

Article from ~ Nick Nilsson online personal training company BetterU, Inc. He has a degree in Physical Education and Psychology and has been inventing new training techniques for more than 16 years. Nick is the author of a number of bodybuilding eBooks. He can be contacted at betteru@fitstep.com.

For more information send an email: weightworkout@yahoo.ca

Atlanta area Human Performance Coach
In home, gym, or park
Strength and Conditioning
Personal Training

Contact me here

Monday, December 17, 2007

New Boot Camp In Atlanta

Starting in January 09 I will be hosting a boot camp in the Midtown North Atlanta area.

Start your new year off on the right path. Get fit and healthy with a workout that will help you get stronger and trim the waistline. A mix of strength exercises and high intensity interval work will get your heart pounding and change your body for the better.

The Atlanta boot camp is structured so that you can choose an appropriate intensity that fits your fitness level. All
workouts are designed for individual and personal flexibility giving everyone the ability to adjust the exercise to a level that pushes them, but still allows them to finish. Both beginners and more advanced participants are able to get a quality workout working side by side. So, bring a friend, have some fun and improve your health and fitness.

For more information send an email:

Atlanta area Boot Camps
Strength and Conditioning
Personal Training

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

8 Week Cardio Interval Training Blast

Get Increased Fat Loss AND Take Your Cardio Fitness To A Whole New Level
Purchase the Gymboss Interval Timer

This detailed cardio program will take you from an interval-
training beginner to interval-training pro in only 8 weeks!
This step-by-step progression guides you through the most
effective types of intervals to maximize your results.

Interval training is one of THE most effective ways to burn fat while preserving muscle. When using cardio training for fat loss, I recommend it almost exclusively in my programs! This nice thing is, interval training is also one of THE most effective ways to improve your overall cardiovascular capacity as well.

There is a LOT of good information available on what intervals are and how to perform them. But what often seems to be missing is a detailed plan that helps you progress from Point A (just starting out with interval training) to Point B (performing the more challenging interval training techniques).

The trick is knowing where to start and how to progress from there. You can't just jump in and start sprinting up hills without knowing what you're doing and building yourself up to it. That's a good way to not only hurt yourself but exhaust yourself as well!

So in response to this, I've designed an interval training progression plan that gets you started with the more introductory-level types of interval training then gradually moves you into the more intense and challenging interval training techniques.

I'll lay out how many intervals to do, which style of interval training to do and how long to do it for. This progression plan will also give you good variety in your cardio training, which I'm sure you know can get VERY dull if you keep doing it the same way over and over.

You see, just like with weight training, you need to constantly challenge and even shock your body in order to continue making progress. Otherwise, your body simply has no reason to adapt and get better. This plan will do it for you!

The overall goals with this cardio program are fat loss and improving cardiovascular capacity. This type of training is NOT a plan I would recommend if you're trying to build muscle. When training to build muscle, you want to keep cardio training down to a lower maintenance level (once or twice a week at most) and this is not a program that does that.

The program is based on doing cardio training 3 times per week and can be applied to basically any method or apparatus of cardio training, be it running, cycling, elliptical machine, stair machine, etc. Any cardio based sports activity will work as well (e.g. swimming, rollerblading).

Choose whatever cardio activity works best for you, that you enjoy the most or that you'd most like to improve your performance in, e.g. if you're a runner, using running as the activity for your interval training.

You can certainly utilize different cardio activities as you go through the program, e.g. use treadmill running one day then the elliptical machine the next. The real key lies in the intensity with which you do the activities!

Before you start in on the program, I would encourage you to read through the following two articles. They'll help you understand what interval training is all about and introduce you to the different types of interval training.

What Do You Mean Low-Intensity Training Isn't The Best For Fat Burning?

The Insider Secrets of Interval Training - Learn How Now!

Now it's time to have a look at the program!

The following link will take you to a page from the Trial Membership area of my site "Powerful Training Secrets." Scroll to bottom for program.

The program starts with a technique known as Aerobic Interval Training - basically, a way to begin learning how to increase training intensity without burning yourself out. Over the next two weeks, your intensity will gradually be increased within the context of Aerobic Intervals.

As you continue through the program, you'll notice how the intervals are continually getting just a bit more challenging - rest times are changing as are work times.

By the time you get to the final few weeks of the program, you'll be in great shape and ready for anything!

If, at any time in the program you feel you need to take a bit more time to adapt to it, feel free to perform another week of the same type of interval training you just did. This program isn't written in stone and you DO need to listen to your body.

So check out the program and if you have any questions about it as you're reading or as you're doing it, please feel free to drop me an email at betteru@fitstep.com!

Here's the link to the interval training program page once again:


If you need a good timer for your intervals, check out the GymBoss timer. I've been using one recently and it really works like a charm. Unlike a lot of other timers, it actually has a vibrate feature that means you don't have to experience loud beeping to know when your time is up (great if you train with headphones on!).

You can set the timer to time different work and rest intervals (e.g. 2 minutes work, 1 minute rest can be programmed in), which is very nice. It's also not too expensive (about 20 US dollars). The timer clips on and is a neat little piece of equipment - very useful for intervals and also for timing your rest periods when weight training.

Purchase the Gymboss Interval Timer


BY Nick Nilsson Vice-President of the online personal training company BetterU, Inc. He has a degree in Physical Education and Psychology and has been inventing new training techniques for more than 16 years. Nick is the author of a number of bodybuilding eBooks including "Metabolic Surge - Rapid Fat Loss," "The Best Exercises You've Never Heard Of," "Gluteus to the Maximus - Build a Bigger Butt NOW!" and "The Best Abdominal Exercises You've Never Heard Of" all available. He can be contacted at betteru@fitstep.com.

Atlanta area
Strength and Conditioning
Personal Training

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Put a Little Pep in Your Step

Fartlek Training

For all the distance runners out there if you have not done so lately give fartleks a go.

Translated from Swedish, as "speed play,
" a Fartlek is simply the addition of a burst into your run. Now instead of a long slow boring run you have transformed your workout into a form of interval training. If you race you will be well aware of surges used to break other runners, well a fartlek is the same thing.

You can start by jogging for 5 minutes then walk for 30 seconds then sprint for 30 seconds then walk again then run fast for 2 minutes and so on. The idea is to train at a wide variety of speeds, distances and times in order to hit the widest variety of training parameters.

This type of training is a great way to keep your cardio sessions interesting. It will help burn a few more calories. It adds variety to your runs, never having to do the same thing twice! This workout can last anywhere from 15 to 40 minutes, depending on the intensity at which you are working. If this is the first time doing a fartllek do not be surprised when the aches and stiffness sets in the next day.

Atlanta area personal trainer that comes to you.
Need a Personal Trainer to help drop a few pounds?
Contact me Here.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Golf Specific Conditioning and Personal Training

Weight Training For Golf

Over the years there has been great technological improvements in golf equipment, but the average handicap for both male and female golfers has remained fairly constant.

It is important for golfers to remember that they still have to swing the club, the best clubs on the market do not swing themselves. A better club may make a slight difference but a better conditioned golfer will make an even bigger difference.

A new set of clubs and instruction from the golf pro will benefit you game but you are still missing something. A golf specific exercise specialist can help improve performance in your game by addressing golf-specific conditioning needs.
It has been reported that 53% of male and 45% of female golfers suffer from low back pain. Pain and injury on the links is not limited to the recreational golfer. At any given time approximately 30% of professionals on the tour are playing injured. So, in addition to lower scores a golf specific exercise specialist can help reduce the incidence of injury.

Keep yourself healthy and you can keep yourself on the greens.

Atlanta area Strength and Conditioning Specialist

Thursday, November 15, 2007

The CURE For Stubborn Shoulders

The Two-Phase Barbell Shoulder Press

If you've got stubborn shoulders, this simple but extremely
powerful technique is EXACTLY what you need. Standard
dumbbelland barbell pressing don't work the WHOLE range
of motion equally - you're leaving results on the table if
you're just doing straight shoulder presses!

If you've ever had a hard time developing your shoulders, this exercise is going to be a lifesaver for you! Personally, shoulders are one of my WORST body parts. It's tough to keep them strong...tough to get them bigger...and tough to really feel them working when I'm actually doing shoulder exercises!

But the first time I used this technique, it absolutely blew my mind. As soon as I finished the set, my shoulders felt like they were inflating! The blood was came rushing in and I knew I was on to something special...that RARELY happens to me with ANY shoulder exercises.

So what makes THIS exercise so special? You're going to reach muscular failure TWICE within the same set. AND you're going to do it with NO REST in between the two phases of the exercise. BAM BAM...one part right into the next.

But here's the twist...it's not a typical drop set in which you reduce the weight to achieve this! You're going to use the SAME weight for both phases of the exercise.

The REAL key lies in the range of motion of each part of the exercise...

You see, when you do a normal barbell shoulder press, as you push the barbell up, you go through what is called a strength curve. In basic terms, it means at the bottom of the movement you are fairly strong. But as you press further (normally about 3 to 5 inches up in the movement) you hit a point where the leverage in your shoulders changes. The exercise gets a lot tougher.

This is called a sticking point - it's basically the weakest point in the exercise. Another example of a sticking point is commonly seen in the bench press. If you were doing a bench press using a heavy weight, lowered the weight to your chest then started to press but couldn't get past a certain point (a few inches above your chest), THAT is also a sticking point.

Bottom line, you can only lift as much weight as you can move through that WEAKEST point in the range of motion of an exercise. But OUTSIDE that sticking point, your muscles are stronger and can lift more weight!

The question becomes, how do we still do full range-of-motion lifting while putting greater tension on the muscles to maximize their strength in OTHER phases of the movement?

We're going to break the movement into two distinct phases. On the first phase, you're going to do FULL reps of the shoulder press. When you can't do any more full reps, you're going to do partial reps in ONLY the top, stronger half of the range of motion.

It's a powerful technique and it'll get your shoulders burning like crazy!

The key to getting the most out of this exercise is the setup...

How to Do It:
First, you'll be doing this exercise in the power rack. While there IS a way to do it without being the rack (and it is still effective that way), the rack is going to allow you to really push your shoulders to the maximum.

Set the safety rails in the rack to just below shoulder height. You're going to be doing a standing military barbell press for your shoulders, bringing to the front, of course! I NEVER recommend doing any behind-the-head shoulder pressing - it can cause shoulder damage.

For this exercise, start with a weight you can get at least 8 to 10 reps for. I would suggest doing 3 or 4 sets of this exercise in total for your shoulder workout.

Grip the bar with your pinkies or fourth fingers on the smooth rings of the Olympic bar. You need to take a narrower grip on the bar than with the bench press. The rails should be set so you have to bend your knees a bit to get under the bar. The bar should be held across your extreme upper chest.

Next, begin the pressing movement. Press the barbell up in front of your face then lockout at the top. When you do a military press, your knees should be slightly bent and abs tight to keep stress off the lower back.

Because of the path of the bar, you will be leaning back a little bit - it has to go in front of your face. But as soon as the bar clears your head, shift your torso forward so that the bar is DIRECTLY over your head. It almost resembles a bobbing-forward motion. This is a key point that a lot of people miss with the shoulder press. If you keep leaning back, it keep tension on the front delts and takes it off the rear delts.

Lower the weight slowly back to your chest then press again. Keep going until you can't get the weight past the sticking point. Try and get it past the sticking point, though! We want to be sure you're right at the limit.

When you're done, set the bar back on the safety rails. And here's the trick that's going to set your shoulders on fire...keeping your hands locked onto the bar, drop down onto your knees under the bar. Now keep pressing in the partial top range of motion of the press!

Because the bar is now ABOVE the sticking point, your shoulders have better leverage and can continue with the exercise! Do as many reps as you can until you can't even budge the bar. I prefer to set the weight down on the rails in between reps here but you can keep a continuous movement, if you want. Do it whichever way feels best to you.

By exploiting the top range of motion after fatiguing the muscles in the full range of motion, you're going to finally be working the shoulders with FULL resistance in the whole range of motion.

When you're done, stand up. Your shoulders will be swelling up any second now!

As I mentioned previously, there IS a way to perform this technique without a power rack.

First, perform the barbell shoulder press, just like above. Now, instead of doing reps until you can't get past the sticking point, you're going to have to stop a rep or two SHORT of that point of failure.

Basically, you're going to have to complete that last rep to the TOP. When you're at the top, now lower the bar only halfway down (just above where your sticking point normally is) then press it back up to the top.

Keep doing reps in this shortened range of motion until you can't hold the bar up anymore!

Give this exercise a try in your next shoulder workout. If you've got good shoulders, this will blow them up even more. If you've got poor shoulders, you're going to be in for a treat!

To view pictures and videos of this technique in action, please click

Nick Nilsson is Vice-President of the online personal training company BetterU, Inc. He has a degree in Physical Education and Psychology and has been inventing new training techniques for more than 16 years. Nick is the author of a number of bodybuilding eBooks including "Metabolic Surge - Rapid Fat Loss," "The Best Exercises You've Never Heard Of," "Gluteus to the Maximus - Build a Bigger Butt NOW!" and "The Best Abdominal Exercises You've Never Heard Of" all available. He can be contacted at betteru@fitstep.com.

Atlanta area
Strength and Conditioning
Personal Training

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

How To Train To WIDEN The Hips

Wider Hips

By Nick Nilsson

To most people, the goal is the opposite...slim the hips. But if you've searched
in vain for information on how to really INCREASE hip size, you've come to
the right place! I'll tell you exactly what kind of
training you need to do to achieve this.

Wider hips...it may not be the most common goal of women who train but, I can promise you, there are a LOT of women out there who would LOVE to build wider hips without putting on a lot of fat!

I'll tell you right now, it's not going to be easy but it definitely CAN be done!

But first...want to know the reason why it's so tough to increase hip width without gaining a lot of fat in the area? It all comes down to your bones.

You see, hip width (not counting fat deposits in the area) is primarily determined by your pelvis size. If you've got genetically narrow hip bones (you can thank your parents for that!), it's going to be much tougher to achieve the wider hips you're looking for.

It's the very same situation with the shoulders - if you want wider shoulders, you're limited by bone structure. You then have to focus on building the lateral delts (the side heads of the shoulder muscles) to give the appearance of wider shoulders.

But the only hitch with the hips is that there really isn't a whole lot of muscle mass available to build onto the outside of your pelvis! In that respect, it's actually EASIER to build wider shoulders with weight training than it is to build wider hips.

The main muscles that operate in the hip area (for our purposes) are the three glute muscles...the gluteus maximus (the main butt muscle), gluteus medius and gluteus minimus.

The primary function of the gluteus maximus is to bring the leg backwards (a.k.a. hip extension). It's a big, powerful muscle because this function is our primary method of moving forward! Every time you push backwards to take a step, that's the gluteus maximus at work.

But the smaller gluteus medius and minimus muscles are what we'll need to focus on to try and increase hip width. These two muscles are what's known as abductors.

Abduction is the biomechanical term for moving a limb AWAY from the midline of the body. In this case, it's moving the thigh away from the center of the body. If you're familiar with adduction (where you bring the legs in towards each other and squeeze the thighs together), it's the opposite movement.

So to widen the hips through training, we need to focus some intense work on the gluteus medius and minimus muscles. And when I say intense work, I'm NOT talking about those light pumping movements where you try and "go for the burn!"

For our purposes, those are not only a waste of time but completely counterproductive. Light weight exercises won't build hips and will interfere with the muscle-building stimulus we're going for that WILL actually build the hips. So toss "The Firm" videos back into the pile if you want to build wider hips. Those won't cut it.

If you want results, it's time to break out the dumbbells and barbells and dig into some REAL weight training!

NOTE: the exercises I'm about explain are probably not familiar
to you. Be VERY sure to click on the link at the bottom and
watch the videos on how to perform these exercises properly.
They will help you a LOT!

The absolute BEST exercise for increasing hip width is NOT an isolation abduction exercise. You may have seen abduction machines in the gym where you sit on a chair and force your legs outwards against resistance. I'm sure you've seen them...they always seem to place those machines directly across from the cardio equipment or opposite the gym entrance!

The best exercise is called the Side Lunge and it can be done with a barbell OR dumbells. But I'm not going to have you do the NORMAL side lunge...that exercise forces you to use lighter weights so you don't strain your knees. This version allows for more resistance and, therefore, more potential muscle growth and hip width!

So how do you do the Side Lunge? Well, the "normal" technique has you starting in a standing position. Then you step one foot directly out to the side (sometimes at angle forwards rather than directly to the side) and lower your body down into a lunge. You come down, bending your knee, then you push all the way back up to the standing position.

The problem with this technique is the lateral stress that gets placed on the knee when you step down to the side. The knees aren't designed to take a lot of sideways pressure - they're all about going forward and back (like a hinge). There's some room to maneuver but sideways movement against momentum can be tough on the knees - just ask any running back in football!

So instead of stepping out to the side on each rep then pushing all the way back up, we're going to do it differently. You'll take that first step out to the side and plant your foot about 2 feet out. And you're going to keep it there!

If you stepped out to the right, bend your right knee and come down into a lunge position. Your left leg will be completely straight and act as a pivot. Come down until your thigh is parallel to the ground then, using hip power, push yourself back up, straightening your right leg but WITHOUT popping all the way back to a standing position where your feet are together.

Remember, we're keeping our feet in the SAME position for the whole exercise.

When you come to the top, you're now going to lunge down to the OTHER side. Come down until your leg knee is bent 90 degrees then push back back up. Again, you're NOT popping up to a total standing position - just straightening your legs. This not only spares your knees, it allows you to keep tension on the muscles better AND use heavier resistance!

You can do this exercise with a barbell or 2 dumbells. When using a barbell, just hold it across your shoulders and be careful with your balance. If you do this exercise with a barbell, it's best to use a rack so you don't have to press the weight overhead and set it down on your shoulders. Just note, you'll be doing this exercise OUTSIDE the rack (there isn't

The dumbell version will be the easiest setup. All you need to do is pick up the dumbells! When you perform the exercise, hand position is important. If you're lunging down to the right, the right-hand dumbell should be on the outside of your right hip. The left-hand dumbell should be held in front of your body down between your legs. This is the best position for balance and resistance.

Then you just reverse it when you go down to the other side - left dumbell on the outside of your left hip and right dumbbell down in between your legs.

The first time you do this exercise, use a light to moderate weight so you get an idea of how the exercise is performed. Once you feel comfortable with it, THEN starting boosting the weight.

  • Ideally, you want to use a weight where you can ONLY get 8 to 10 reps on each side. You have to challenge the muscles to see results! Sets of 15 to 20 reps won't build the hips.
  • Do 3 sets of this exercise with 60 to 90 seconds rest in between sets. THEN you go onto the abduction-isolation style of exercise.
  • For this one, we're NOT going to be using any machines. This is a dumbell exercise all the way. It's easy to set up, though!
  • All you need is a single dumbbell - again, start with a light to moderate-weight dumbell to get an idea of how to do the exercise before you move up in weight.
  • In standing position, hold the dumbbell in your left hand and hold onto something solid with your right. The left dumbell should be resting on the side of your upper thigh.
  • Now just explode up with your left leg directly out to the side as high as possible and hold it there for a second or two! You should feel a strong squeeze in your outer hip area.
  • With this exercise, use a POWERFUL movement and don't be afraid to start building up to heavier weights. This isn't a "squeezy-toney" type of exercise. We're going for an explosive push up and out to the side.

When you've done 6 to 8 reps on the left left, switch over to the right leg and do the same thing. Rest 60 seconds after you've done both legs then repeat for 2 more sets (3 sets total). Remember, once you're familiar with the exercise, start piling on the weight so that you can ONLY get those 6 to 8 reps. If you can get more reps, increase the weight next time.

Now we're going to add in the final segment of the wider-hip workout...sideways treadmill walking.

This is a unique way to use the treadmill that gives you two main effects. The first is increasing blood supply to the outer hips (which is important to help support muscle growth). The second is putting a stretch on the outer hip muscles with each step you take.

  • Be sure to watch the video on this one so you know how to do it before you step on the treadmill sideways!
  • First, set the treadmill on a bit of incline - this will give you greater resistance, better stretch and faster results. About 3 to 5% grade is good.
  • Set the treadmill to a slow speeed - 2 to 3 mph is a good starting point. Stand on the side panel of the treadmill (right beside the tread), facing left. Grip the side rail in front of you and the front rail to your right. This will stabilize you in 2 planes and allow you to get yourself off the treads if you stumble.
  • With this exercise, you are basically going to be walking sideways with leg cross-overs while on the treadmill.
  • When facing left, step on FIRST with your right foot, then immediately cross over it with your left foot to get started. Watch your feet and stay on the middle of the tread.
  • Our goal is to use this technique to get a great stretch. To do this, exagerrate the length of your step and keep a VERY slow speed on the treadmill (e.g. 2 mph). With this long step, you'll get a STRONG outer thigh and glute stretch with every rep (on the higher leg) and a good muscle-pumping workout on the lower leg.
  • Go for about a minute facing that way then step off, take a short rest, e.g. 30 seconds, then do a minute facing the other direction. Repeat this for 5 to 10 minutes.

The Overall Program
Here is what the total hip-widening program is going to look like:

  • 3 sets Side Lunges - 8 to 10 reps on each leg going back and forth between legs
  • 3 sets Side Dumbbell Abductions - 6 to 8 explosive reps on each leg
  • 5 to 10 minutes of Sideways Treadmill Walking - 1 minute intervals in each direction

This program can be done 3 times a week to really focus strongly on building up the outer hips.

View the pictures and video of these exercises and techniques in action

And if you're interested in even MORE information on building the hips and glutes, be sure to check out my book "Gluteus to the Maximus - Build a Bigger Butt NOW!"

Physically widening the hips is really only part of the equation. The other part? Making the waist smaller. This gives you the illusion of wider hips right off the bat!

Achieving the smaller waist will primarily be a matter of fat loss and abdominal exercises targeted towards tightening the waist.


Nick Nilsson is Vice-President of the online personal training company BetterU, Inc. He has a degree in Physical Education and Psychology and has been inventing new training techniques for more than 16 years. Nick is the author of a number of bodybuilding eBooks including "Metabolic Surge - Rapid Fat Loss," "The Best Exercises You've Never Heard Of," "Gluteus to the Maximus - Build a Bigger Butt NOW!" and "The Best Abdominal Exercises You've Never Heard Of" all available. He can be contacted at betteru@fitstep.com.

Atlanta area personal trainer

Monday, October 29, 2007

Atlanta Sports Performance Training

Looking For Sport Specific Trainers in Atlanta?

Looking to improve your game? If so I can help. I am a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist, CSCS in Atlanta who works with the non-athlete as well as athletes of all levels.

There are many things away from your sport that can be done to help you become a better athlete. The first step is to building a better athlete involves to identifying then and correcting the biomechanical and physiological weaknesses that hamper performance. Daily life along with practice and competition take a toll on the body causing imbalances and irregular movement patterns. These need to be addressed to keep you healthy and make you a better athlete.

Visit Sport Performance Training in Atlanta for more information.

After an athletes imbalances have been addressed it is possible to help them improve their flexibility, stability, strength, power, speed, and agility.

Whether your game is golf, tennis, football, track, or basketball, you perform better when your body is conditioned and properly aligned. Everyone will perform and feel better with a personalized sport specific program, contact me today and feel better tomorrow.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Equipment for a good Home Gym - Part 4

Home Gym Equipment - Adjustable Dumbbells

Now that you have the dumbbells, a barbell, plenty of weight, and an adjustable bench now it is time for one more piece of equipment.

A power rack is the next essential piece of equipment. With a power rack you will have even more exercises available to plus it offers safety. Along with the added safety comes the opportunity to push yourself adding more weight and extra reps to each workout. Without a power rack there are many exercises that can pin you under the bar, and without anyone around to help out that can be a messy situation. Now that yo have a power rack you have a margin of safety that allows you to push yourself.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Equipment for a good Home Gym - Part 3

Home Gym Equipment - What you Need

After you have picked up the equipment mentioned in part 1 and part 2 you are ready to get your second piece of equipment. An adjustable bench makes an ideal second addition to the home gym. It will be well worth the investment to get a sturdy fully adjustable bench that is easily allows adjustments for incline, flat and decline settings.

After the dumbbells and a bench comes the heavy weight. A 300lbs barbell set is a good next step. Most sporting goods stores sell decent barbell sets, there are even a few stores that sell used sets so you do not have to pay allot. Make sure you look locally first because shipping will be about the same as the barbell set. Shipping is priced by the pound so at 300lbs you can expect to have a pretty steep bill.

I suggest that you get a quality Olympic 7 foot long bar. There are two reasons for this. Firstly it will last longer and will not bend as the other cheaper bars will. They can often bend if dropped or doing deadlifts with 200lbs. Another reason to get a good Olympic bar is because they are so much smother, if you start to cleans this lift will be that much easier to do.

Once you've got the basic barbell set, you can very easily get more weight plates as you need them.

Now that you have this, the equipment from part 1 and 2 the amount of exercises available to you will provide you with fresh and effective exercises for months to come.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Equipment for a good Home Gym - Part 2

Home Gym Equipment - Adjustable Dumbbells

You have decided that a commercial gym is not for you, nor is an in home personal trainer. To get a good workout at home will require a few pieces of quality equipment, but what exactly do you need? There are many products on the market that claim full body transformations but are they necessary or worth it, do they even work? To save you the hassle of sorting through marketing gimmicks take a look at todays must have piece of equipment for a home gym.

After you have picked up the equipment mentioned in part 1 you are ready to get your second piece of equipment. An adjustable bench makes an ideal second addition to the home gym. It will be well worth the investment to get a sturdy fully adjustable bench that is easily allows adjustments for incline, flat and decline settings.

Make sure the bench yo select for your home gym is strong, and durable. This does not mean it has to be uncomfortable. Spend some time looking for a bench that fits all these requirements.

Adding a bench to your home gym will allow you to do even more exercises.

With a bench and the equipment from part 1 the amount of exercises available to you will provide you with fresh and effective exercises for months to come.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Essential Home Gym Equipment - Part 1

Essential Home Gym Equipment #1 - Adjustable Dumbbells

Want to workout at home but not sure what you will need for an effective home gym? Take a look at this article and future post to help clarify what equipment is necessary for a productive home gym.

If I could only have one single type of equipment in my home gym, it would be a good set of adjustable-weight dumbbells. The variety of exercises for every single body part with just a simple pair of dumbbells is endless.

Getting adjustable dumbbells means you can very easily change the weight you're working with while still not using up a whole lot of space in your home gym. If you have pre-made dumbbells, you have to set aside space (or get a good dumbbell rack) for rows of individual dumbbells.

If you've GOT the space (and the money!), pre-made dumbbells are certainly more convenient to use. But if you're tight on room, lining up your dumbbells may not be an option. And, of course, the pre-made dumbbells are going to be a lot more expensive to get a decent range of weight for.

When it comes to adjustable dumbbells, you've got several options. By far, the most convenient are the Powerblock style of dumbbells (Bowflex and Nautilus also have products like this).

With this style, all you have to do is basically flip a switch to set your weight on the dumbbell. The whole thing is interlocking - they fit into the space of just two dumbbells and give you a good range of weights to work with.

The other main options are the "make it yourself" free weight dumbbells. With these, you've basically got weight plates and posts. With a good selection of weight plates, you can make a great range of weights.

This style of dumbbell will be a good deal cheaper than the Powerblock style but, on the downside, it does take more time to put the dumbbells together and the weight posts sticking out can be a bit awkward. But overall, for the money, this style is still a very good investment, especially if you're looking to make some heavy dumbbells. Heavy Powerblock dumbbells can be quite expensive (they have expansion sets that go up to 130 lbs) but even then, are still a substantial savings over the equivalent amount of pre-made dumbbells.

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Thursday, October 4, 2007

High-intensity training Fat Loss

Find out why high-intensity training may be
your best bet for trimming your waistline.

But how can this possibly be? Everywhere you look, it's always said that long-duration, low-intensity training is best for fat loss. All high-intensity work does is burn carbohydrates, right?


After reading this article, I guarantee you'll develop a new respect for high-intensity cardio training for fat loss.

Low-intensity exercise is defined as working at a heart rate of about 60% to 65% of your maximum heart rate (which is equal to 220 - your age = maximum heart rate, thus if you are 20 years old, 220 - 20 = 200 max HR). High-intensity exercise is defined as working at about 75 to 85% or more of your maximum heart rate.

Using the previous example for maximum heart rate (max HR=200), working at 60% of your max HR would be 120 beats per minute and 80% of that would be 160 beats per minute.

There are several reasons low-intensity exercise is normally recommended for fat loss.

1. It's easy - In many cases people who are trying to lose fat don't always feel energetic enough to do hard training due to the caloric deficit (a.k.a. diet) that they are on. In these cases, just sticking to an exercise program can be hard enough, never mind making the exercise itself challenging.

2. It's low risk - A personal trainer generally can't go wrong by recommending low-intensity exercise to clients. Even the most out of shape person can usually do low-intensity cardio training safely. While this is certainly appropriate advice for novice trainers, it does not necessarily apply to the more experienced trainer when it comes to effective training.

3. It burns a higher percentage of calories from fat - this is very true: exercising at a lower intensity does burn a higher percentage of calories from fat than high-intensity exercise. But, as I will explain, this does not necessarily mean you're going to burn more fat.

Let's crunch some numbers to show you exactly what I mean when I say high-intensity exercise burns more fat.

Low-intensity training burns about 50% fat for energy while high-intensity training burns about 40% fat for energy. This is not a huge difference.

Say, for example, walking for 20 minutes burns 100 calories. Then 50% of 100 calories is 50 fat-calories burned.

Now say 10 minutes of interval training at a high intensity burns 160 calories. Well, 40% of 160 calories is 64 fat-calories burned.

By doing the high-intensity work, you've just burned 14 more fat calories in half the time. Starting to sound good? There's more...

Low-intensity exercise only burns calories while you are actually exercising. That means the moment you stop exercising, your caloric expenditure goes back down to nearly baseline levels. Within minutes, you're not burning many more calories than if you hadn't done anything at all.

High-intensity exercise, on the other hand, continues to boost your metabolism long after you're done (often up to 24 hours after, depending on the length and intensity of the training session). This means you're continuing to burn many more calories all day long!

Low-intensity exercise does nothing to build or support muscle mass. Maintaining muscle mass is critical to an effective fat-loss strategy as muscle burns fat just sitting there. Want to keep your metabolism working to burn fat? Do whatever you can to build or keep your muscle tissue.

High-intensity exercise has the potential to increase muscle mass. Compare the body of a top sprinter to a top marathon runner. The sprinter carries far more muscle mass. You won't get big bulky muscles from high intensity training but you will get shapely and more defined muscles!

How To Do It

Now that you've seen how effective high intensity training can be for fat loss, how is it done?

The absolute easiest way to start this type of training is to get on a cardio machine at the gym and select the interval training program. As you'll see, you'll start off with a fairly light warm-up cycle, then quickly jump up to a high intensity level for a short burst. You will then drop back down to a low level for a period of time, then back up to a high level again, repeated several times and finishing with an appropriate cool-down period.

The repetition of these intervals is the nuts and bolts of high intensity interval training. You can also do it manually by adjusting your intensity level up and down over short periods of time.

For example, do 30 seconds at high power then 30 seconds at low power. Repeat. It's very simple and very effective.

Another excellent method for doing high-intensity training is called aerobic interval training. It is essentially the same concept as the previously explained interval training but the work intervals are longer with the intensity level somewhat lower. A good example would be running at a pace that you can only keep up for about 5 minutes then walking for 2 minutes then running 5 more minutes, walking 2 minutes, etc.

High-intensity training can be applied to any form of cardiovascular exercise. Anything from walking/sprinting to swimming to bike riding will work perfectly. I would recommend doing his type of training 2 to 3 times per week for best results. As always, be sure to consult with your physician before starting any exercise program.

Remember, what you get out of exercise is directly proportional to what you put in. Work at high-intensity training for awhile and see just how much better your fat-loss efforts go.

Article by: Nick Nilsson is Vice-President of the online personal training company BetterU, Inc. He has a degree in Physical Education and Psychology and has been inventing new training techniques for more than 16 years. Nick is the author of a number of bodybuilding eBooks including "Metabolic Surge - Rapid Fat Loss," "The Best Exercises You've Never Heard Of," "Gluteus to the Maximus - Build a Bigger Butt NOW!" and "The Best Abdominal Exercises You've Never Heard Of". He can be contacted at betteru@fitstep.com.

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Saturday, September 29, 2007

A Unique Exercise For Shredding the Upper Abs

Lying Cable-Curl Crunches

Want your six-pack abs to jump out and demand attention? When
you properly develop the upper abs, you can actually look
like you've got an 8 pack!

The abs are the showpiece area of your body, no question about it. And this exercise will hit your upper ab area in a way that is totally unique.

You will be doing a regular crunch movement, but at the same time you'll be putting tension on the abs from the top-down by pulling down on the cable. It's the combination of the two tensions (pulling yourself up with the crunch and pulling the cable down at the same time) that will set your abs on fire!

How To Do It:

For this exercise, you'll need a high pulley set-up (an adjustable-height pulley is best but a regular high pulley will work as well). Use a bar attachment on the high pulley - if you have an adjustable-height pulley, set it to about 2 or 3 feet off the ground.

Set the weight stack with a light to moderate weight the first time you do this. You don't need heavy weight for this exercise to be effective.

Lie on your back on the floor with your head directly under the pulley. If you're using the adjustable-height pulley, reach up and grasp the bar with a regular curl grip. If you're using the standard high pulley, you'll need to first grab the bar then sit down on the floor then lay down.

Hold the bar with your arms bent about 90 degrees. Your legs will be bent 90 degrees and your body will be in the start of the regular crunch position.

Now comes the trick:

Begin the crunch movement - as you do the crunch, pull the bar down towards your chest, until your elbows touch the floor. Crunch yourself up as high as you can and hold it at the top. Squeeze your abs hard - the upper/middle area will be on fire even on the first rep.

Lower your torso slowly to the floor and let the bar back up. Don't let your arms go fully straight but keep a 90 degree bend at the top.

By the time you've done 6 or 8 reps of this exercise, your abs will be VERY strongly worked.

And if you really want to burn your abs out, do 2 sets of this exercise then immediately do 2 sets of Abdominal Sit-Ups.


For pictures of how to do the Lying Cable Curl Crunch, click on the following link:


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