Fitness and Nutrition

What's a good exercise machine for home?

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Oct 24, 2001
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What's a good exercise machine for home?

I have a tiny apartment so I don't have a lot of room for exercise equipment. I'm getting a little jiggly in the tummy and this is overdue. Why spend $500 to be embarrassed in a public gym when I could destroy this tummy from home while watching a movie or something. :) It's gotta' be good for beginners though, I'm starting with the physique and endurance of a rubber band. ;)

Bowflex?
"I don't know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody." - Bill Cosby
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Aug 22, 2008
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Sorry but I would say NONE. Your best bet, get a cheap pull-up bar from Walmart and a set of adjustable dumbells with some iron plates. Even though you won't be able to do an bar lifts (the best really) you can at least get started. Push ups need no equipment either.
Either way, if your diet isn't in check, don't even bother starting. Good luck to you.

Cheers
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Diet is understood (and no, I don't eat junk food every day. Just too much time in a computer chair, both work and home.) But how does exercising the arms flatten the tummy?
"I don't know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody." - Bill Cosby
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Dec 25, 2010
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Try a treadmill? Something that involves cardio if your not planning on building muscles i presume? Does your apartment have a gym? Or a pool? I heard swimming is really good for you because it requires all your body.
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BlueMax wrote:
Dec 26th, 2010 6:28 pm
Diet is understood (and no, I don't eat junk food every day. Just too much time in a computer chair, both work and home.) But how does exercising the arms flatten the tummy?
There's no such thing as spot removal. You can workout the entire body with a set of dumbells
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BlueMax wrote:
Dec 26th, 2010 6:28 pm
Diet is understood (and no, I don't eat junk food every day. Just too much time in a computer chair, both work and home.) But how does exercising the arms flatten the tummy?

As has already been mentioned, the first thing you need to realize is that it is impossible to "spot reduce" fat from one specific part of the body while you workout .... legs, thighs, and buttocks, TUMMY FAT..........whatever.

So when you talk about flattening your ' tummy ' ......you can't target that one area, by " spot reducing " that area and nothing else. So, doing tons and tons of ab exercises alone alone isn't going to help you much. As has already been mentioned on this forum many times , sadly, it usually gets ( along with diet ) down to cardio and diet to lose that unwanted fat.

The key to fat loss - losing weight - is to focus on the total calories you use throughout the day. Over time, you lose body fat ( i.e " weight " ) by simply using more calories than you consume - in other words, you have to create a ' calorie deficit '. And, to create that daily ' calorie deficit ' you can simply try to reduce your caloric intake, increase the calories you burn by being more active in general, increase the calories you burn by engaging in some sort of cardio, increase the calories you burn by engaging in some sort of resistance training ............and or some combination of all 4.

So, as I noted above, there is no one fat loss approach that is best suited - ' the best ' - for specifically losing fat the tummy area you cited. It's all about losing calories. And in that regard, cardio training is a good option relatively speaking because it has the potential to burn a lot of calories....IMO. And cardio training can encompass anything from walking, jogging, running, swimming, stationary bike, elliptical machine, rower, cardio / aerobic class DVDs etc. etc. A used and relatively cheap stationary bike would be a good fit for a tiny apartment IMO.

In the meantime, you can also start to tone up your ab muscles a bit as well to help with flattening that tummy. Pasted this in from another thread post of mine....try these at home....


[INDENT] LOWER ABS: REVERSE CRUNCH :Exercise the lower abs before the upper abs. For lower, do a reverse crunch. This exercise can be done on the ground or on an incline situp board. All you need is something behind your head to hold. If you use the incline board, use it with your feet lower than your head. Lying on your back, hold a weight or a chair leg (if lying on the floor) or the foot bar (if using the situp board) behind your head.. Keep the knees slightly bent. Pull your pelvis and legs up so that your knees are above your chest and then return to beginning position.

http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/d ... rse-crunch

UPPER ABS : AB CRUNCH :For upper abs - ab crunch. Lying on your back, put your knees up in the air so that your thighs are at a right angle to your torso, with your knees bent. If you like you can rest your feet on something, like a chair. Put your hands either behind your head or gently touching the sides of your head. Now, slowly raise your shoulders off the ground and try to touch your breastbone to your pelvis ( it can't ne done ) , breathing out as you go. Although the actual movement will be very small (your upper torso should move through less than 30 degrees) you should try to go as high as possible. Only your spine should bend, your hips should not move. Do these fairly slowly to avoid using momentum to help.

http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/d ... e/crunches

OVERALL ABS : BICYCLE KICK : Lie on your back on a mat or padded carpet with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Press your lower back into the floor, engaging your abdominal muscles, as you put both hands behind your head (don't pull on your head). Bring your right elbow over to your left knee, and then bring your left elbow over to your right knee in a twisting, bicycle pedal motion. Continue to breathe naturally. Alternate opposite elbow to opposite knee with hands interlaced behind your head in a slow and controlled manner and with full extension of each leg on every repetition.

Breathe naturally, extend your legs fully to increase intensity and perform the motion very slowly. Keep your knees bent throughout the movement, while you tap your feet to the floor (instead of extending your leg straight out), to decrease intensity. Repeat till you fell muscle fatigue.

http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/d ... e/air-bike


[/INDENT]

Do abs three ( or four ) times a week. Try to do ( 3/4 ) sets in the 15-30 rep range. Only rest when you absolutely must, so take a short (10-15sec) rest between sets and take 2 sec / rep.
[OP]
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Excellent info, thanks!

The plan now is reduce calories, lots of cardio and add in some dumbbells and bicycle crunches for flavour. ;)
"I don't know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody." - Bill Cosby
Newbie
May 12, 2009
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Forget doing ab crunches, you need to do weight training and cardio. Jog 30-40min one day and do compound exercises the next (e.g., squats, deadlifts, chin-ups), make sure to also rest so your body recovers. If you're doing this at home just make sure you go slowly and don't kill yourself with too much weight, and make sure your form is good (can Google this).

Good luck.
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Pull up bar and dumbbells
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shannn wrote:
Dec 28th, 2010 9:17 pm
Pull up bar and dumbbells

I'm still not sure why people keep saying this... why/how would gaining muscle in the arms and shoulders flatten the tummy? Sure it'll burn calories, but......?
"I don't know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody." - Bill Cosby
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BlueMax wrote:
Dec 28th, 2010 10:46 pm
I'm still not sure why people keep saying this... why/how would gaining muscle in the arms and shoulders flatten the tummy? Sure it'll burn calories, but......?

You can also look into P90X

To lose fat, you need to do cardio, which you can do by just running

Adding muscle will help increase your base metabolic rate, which will help you cut down weight as well (and keep it off)

And everyone loses fat first in the place they last gained it, i.e. doing sit ups will not help you lose fat on your stomach specifically.
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BlueMax wrote:
Dec 27th, 2010 10:49 pm
Excellent info, thanks!

The plan now is reduce calories, lots of cardio and add in some dumbbells and bicycle crunches for flavour. ;)
Losing ( ' tummy ' ) fat is all about creating a daily calorie deficit - and adjustments to your diet and or doing some cardio will be significant short term contributors toward that goal.

The crunches / bicycles have virtually nothing to do with fat loss - but will simply help tone / strengthen your abdominal ( core ) muscles.
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BlueMax wrote:
Dec 28th, 2010 10:46 pm
I'm still not sure why people keep saying this... why/how would gaining muscle in the arms and shoulders flatten the tummy? Sure it'll burn calories, but......?

Doing resistance training of any or all muscle groups burns some extra calories.

And, technically speaking anyway, the additional muscle mass gained as a result of resistance training also burns extra calories. However, the impact of extra calories burned per any extra pound of muscle you've gained as a result of resistance exercise per day - from a realistic / practical point of view - is pretty small.

So, in theory, both those means of burning extra calories contributes toward creating a daily calorie deficit - though the impact on your daily calorie deficit will be much greater in the short term due to consequences of the calories being burned doing the resistance training itself than any extra calories being burned due to added muscle mass.

And again, ...........you need to create a daily calorie deficit to lose fat.
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BlueMax wrote:
Dec 28th, 2010 10:46 pm
I'm still not sure why people keep saying this... why/how would gaining muscle in the arms and shoulders flatten the tummy? Sure it'll burn calories, but......?

The reason for us "saying this" is that these movements allow for virtually all muscles in the body to be used. Let me explain:

Push-ups: chest, triceps, shoulders, and less so, lats
Pull-ups: back, biceps

Using dumbbells:
Shoulder press: shoulders, upper back and triceps
DB rows: back and biceps
Side, front DB raises: shoulders mainly
And on, and on, and on..... you get the picture. There are a ton of available exercises using DB's. For legs, you need DB squats, and lunges for example.

For the opinion of using compound barbell exercises, while they are better, the OP specifically said he has a tiny apartment with very little room. I'm guessing a cage or rack isn't in the cards for him, let alone a 7' bar. Not to mention, no need for any bench.

Cut back the calories, eat vegetables like they're going out of style, and workout with weights, 3-4 times a week. If you doing things right, you'll body comp will change for the better.

Cheers
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Jun 17, 2006
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You can really work your entire body aerobically and anaerobically with only a few things:

A pull up bar
Your body weight and the ground.

If you want to get fancy you can add a rowing machine (i recommend a concept 2 machine) and a kettlebell (start with a 16kg one).

With those few pieces of equipment you can get a world class workout from your living room, with a minimal outlay of cash, and a pretty low risk of injury. If you can master the pushup & pullup (including more difficult variations), kettlebell swing and turkish getup, and put in some time on the rower, youll do great.
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