There are innumerable books and videos with workout programs promising massive biceps and an Atlas like chest. The problem is that most men are too lazy or have an injury that prevents them from fully capitalizing on such a regime.
I am horrendously out of shape. My excuses (we always have them) are twofold. A genuine neck/back problem and a life style that has me doing no more than standing and preaching, sitting and writing or driving a truck. We are in a different location every week so if your “expert” answer is “join a spa” it only testifies to your ignorance of real life. I have begun many workout programs only to suddenly have a searing pain shoot through my neck and then I’m down for two or three weeks.
Several months ago I determined in my heart to get in better shape. Not only because I need to, but because Nathan will soon be gone and I will be carrying the hitch and books until Luke can take over. Rather than follow what someone told me was “right”, I decided to simply do what worked. The following may be something that some other brother can use. I call it extremely low impact. It doesn’t take several hours out of my day to; go to a spa, workout, shower & dress and then go back to work. I do it all in my living room and it takes almost no dedicated time at all. If you read and see something wrong with what I’m doing, please…shut up! It works for me!
Due to my neck & back I take a chance at being laid up if I lift weights. Also, I believe in “redeeming the time”. That means I love to be able to do two things at once, therefore most of my workout takes place while I read. Here is what I do and why:
1. Build up forearms & biceps – We bought two little six lb. dumb bells. I use only one for this. While I sit & read my Bible I curl one dumb bell. It’s not overly heavy and I’m sitting so there is no strain on my back. I have no “goal” (a certain number of repetitions or certain size bicep) so I never count how many I do. I do one arm till it’s tired them switch to the other. I do curls: palm up than palm down then sideways with my palm out.
2. Shoulders – Also while sitting & reading I raise one weight in an overhead press. Again, I never count them and I do no more than I want to. I started with just a few but have worked up to quite a few. Then I switch hands and do the other arm.
3.Wrists & forearms – Next I lay my arm straight out on the arm of the chair and curl one weight with just my wrist. Then I roll my arm over and do them that way.
4. Grip & forearms I have a little plastic “Hand Squeezer” that hangs over the gearshift lever in the van. When I can, I squeeze it while I drive. I do 100 to 150 repetitions.
I do all of these sitting down reading. I’m doing two things at once! It’s wonderful! There is no “dedicated time” used for these exercises. The next three use their own dedicated time but only a few minutes for each.
5. Shoulders, chest, lungs – I stand with a weight in each hand, palms toward my legs. I pull the weights up to my chin. I do 50.
6. Legs – Standing, I simply push up on my tip-toes. Primarily on the balls of my feet. I do 50.
7. Strengthen back, tighten stomach, lungs – Standing, I simply bend over and touch my toes then straighten up, inhaling deeply. I do 50.
These last three exercises take less than five minutes dedicated time. In time I will increase the numbers as I want to. Some days I will do the whole series or a convenient part again later in the day. If I could add one (and I might some day) it would be jogging to expand the lungs more.
Results? In a few months I’ve noticed a firming up of my forearms & biceps. (Remember! I’m not shooting for some picture in a body building magazine. I’m trying to stay in shape.) My breathing is a little deeper, my legs feel stronger. The back muscles will take very slow progress to build them up to something more strenuous. My stomach …well…I’ve noticed a firming up of my forearms & biceps…
This program has helped me while protecting my back from injury. It has not taken two hours out of the middle of my day. And it doesn’t require me to go searching for a gym in every city I visit. (Would you like to try finding a gym in Gove, Kansas?)
Maybe there’s a man out there who has an spinal injury or is pressed for time or is just too lazy to do a serious workout. Maybe something I do will work for you.
There are two things you need to decide before you start.
1. You’re not going to quit. Keep going no matter what happens.
2. Don’t try to please anyone but yourself. You don’t have to reach goals set by anyone but yourself.
Look! You’ve got to do something! Don’t just sit around watching basketball until it’s too late. (I hate to say it but you can even do this while watching basketball.)
You only lose when you give up. I refuse to give up!