I’m going to share with you a dumbbell exercise you can use for combined strength, endurance and fat loss. For most of you, the concept of using one exercise for multiple effects is foreign. This is because most people take a SINGULAR approach to training.
– Lifting weights is for strength
– Running on the treadmill is for cardiorespiratory endurance
– Stretching is for flexibility
– And so on
While using the dumbbell for strength or muscle building is commonplace, using the dumbbell to get a great cardio boosting workout, or for burning off large amounts of unwanted fat probably hasn’t occurred to most of you. This is unfortunate, because combining strength, cardio and fat loss into one quick workout involving dumbbells produces fitness improvements you can USE in everyday life, and physical changes you can SEE in a short amount of time!
Dumbbells can be using for two arm exercises, one arm exercises or in a alternating manner. (By the way, many real world activities are performed this way!) This improves your ability to perform a great variety of sport, work and life activities with excellence.
Combining strength, cardio and fat loss into one dumbbell workout teaches the body to perform as one complete unit while performing strength movements that require the back up of a strong heart and lungs. This creates a more resilient body able to perform a variety of activities stronger, better and longer. Isn’t this why you train?
How many of you have been on a fitness program of some sort, only to become tired and winded when performing an unrelated life activity? While you may be able to run on the treadmill for 10 minutes with ease, lifting a box and climbing a flight of stairs wipes you out! Could it be that your fitness efforts are not translating into real world benefits you can use to improve your ability to live life to the fullest?
Time for an example:
No matter how much I try to explain that dumbbell exercise can be used for cardiorespiratory improvement and fat loss, or how much better this form of training is to prepare for real world activities… some people just won’t get it!
So try this… Do 10 minutes of this dumbbell exercise: 2 Handed Dumbbell Swings.
This and any form of exercise should only be attempted if you are given clearance by your doctor. Do not attempt this if you have a history of heart problems. Immediately stop the exercise if you feel feint, lightheaded or feel any pain or tightness in the chest. Above all else, use common sense. Coach Eddie Lomax, the Optimum Fitness Network LLC, or anyone associated with them are not responsible for any injuries or damage resulting from attempting anything in this article. Attempt at your own risk.
DB Two Handed Swing
Starting Position: Grasp one dumbbell with both hands and squat down with a wide stance so the dumbbell hangs between your legs. Keep your chest out, head up and the natural curve of your lower back.
Action: Swing the dumbbell back through your legs and reverse the direction by forcibly extending the knees and thrusting with the hips to swing the dumbbell outwards. The movement of the dumbbell comes from the explosion and snapping of the legs and hips, not arm strength. Your arms just guide the dumbbell in an arching motion.
When the dumbbell reaches about shoulder height, guide the dumbbell back along the same path to the Starting Position, immediately letting the dumbbell swing back through the legs in preparation for the next repetition. Remember, you are squatting down by lowering your hips and bending at the knees, you are NOT bending over.
Breathing: Keep your core tight throughout the entire exercise, exhaling through pursed lips on the way up and inhaling through the nose on the way down.
Directions: Set a timer for 10 minutes. Pick a dumbbell that you can swing with good form, but that provides some resistance. Start swinging the dumbbell, stopping to rest only when needed. Try to get as many repetitions done with good form in the 10 minute time period.
What will happen?
If you chose the correct weight, performed the exercise correctly and rested as little as possible, what you’ll have figured out is that you just got a full body workout that used a wide variety of muscles, got your heart pounding and your chest heaving and burned off a huge amount of calories. You see… you got your heart rate and breathing rates up using a strength exercise! And that was just with ONE exercise!
Just imagine what you can do with a full dumbbell workout program designed for simultaneous strength, endurance and fat loss?