If you’re in the habit of working out, you’re already ahead of lots of folks who live sedentary lifestyles. Most people sit around like vegetables, and the only workouts they experience are trips to the supermarket.
But what do you do when your workouts begin to get boring? When what was once a difficult regimen becomes easy and routine, you need to spice things up so you continue to make gains and improve your physical fitness levels.
Unfortunately, this can sometimes be easier said than done. After all, when you’re already working out using a well-designed routine, it can be difficult to find some way of increasing the intensity.
But don’t worry, there are plenty of low-cost (or no-cost) items that fitness fans have developed over the years which give you increased intensity without the increased risks associated with unconventional workouts. What follows is a few of these low-cost pieces of fitness equipment, and some suggestions as to their use.
Increase your grip with weight lifting straps
Lots of time, your grip strength holds back your progress. Anything that requires you to have a strong grip, like pull-ups or chin-ups, can be improved with a simple pair of weightlifting straps. They’re low in cost, but high in fitness effectiveness. You shouldn’t be without them.
These handy fitness items are little more than sturdy pieces of cloth (or leather) that encircle the wrists and help connect you to the pull-up bar, barbell, dumbbell, or whatever else you happen to be pulling. They make it easy to hold onto things while you work on your back and biceps. The difference is astounding. With wrist straps, you won’t be held back by a weak grip or hand/wrist problems, ever again.
Increase grip with lifting chalk
Weight lifting straps are great, but there are times when you can’t (or shouldn’t) use them. Picture yourself learning how to perform the power clean or some other dynamic barbell exercise. You can’t strap yourself in during an athletic, explosive movement like that.
And that’s where weight lifting chalk comes in. With lifting chalk, you decrease the slipperiness of your palms and fingers, and this gives you a much improved grip so you can pull more weight and reach goals that others fail to achieve.
There are several kinds of chalk in common use in powerlifting and weightlifting gyms across the nation and the world. But whichever type you use, you’ll wonder how you ever did without it. Chalk is to weight training what shoes are to running — without it, you can’t go as hard or as long before your palms give out on you.
So there you have it, two easy and inexpensive ways to improve your grip strength. You may not think it’s important to have a crushing grip, but when you see how much easier it is to make progress in your fitness workouts when your grip is strong and secure, you’ll be glad you took the steps necessary to ensure your grip strength.
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