Welcome to the lbf workout blogNo, this is not going to be a blog about our own workouts, but hopefully more a discussion starter on topics that relate to what we do here. What do we do here? We source quality new and used gym equipment that we sell to you at the best prices we can.
So we'll talk about LBF, about fitness, exercise, gym equipment, fitness equipment, weights themselves, correct training techniques and anything else that comes to mind.
We hope you enjoy the ramblings and we welcome feedback and comments on what is posted, agree or disagree.....
Keep hearing about kettlebells? Know they’re from Russia but nothing else? Here’s our 2 minute intro.
Kettlebells are popular weight training tools that provide both strength and aerobic benefits. Shaped like cannonballs with a handle, they come in a variety of different weights – like dumbbells. Kettlebells may be used to perform most exercises that typically utilize barbells or dumbbells, but offer even more variety because of their construction.
Weight lifters can swing kettlebells and pass them off hands in ways that even dumbbells do not allow. The ability to quickly swing kettlebells enables users to raise their heart rate while they do strength training exercises, thereby strengthening their muscles and cardiovascular systems at the same time. The aerobic component burns calories and fat to promote weight loss.
Kettlebells are available from 4kg to 40kg. If you are a starter, it is recommended that men begin with the 16KG and women begin with the 8KG before moving onto heavier weights.
SO, which style kettlebell is for you? The simple answer is classic kettlebells are probably the best place to start if you’re new to kettlebell training. However, if you plan on using kettlebells regularly and knocking out some long sets, then you can’t go past the Pro Grade variety.
Beginner/new to kettlebells – go for the classic
Serious athlete and kettlebell enthusiast – choose the Pro Grades
Want to know more? Check out this clip for a great intro into kettlebells from the great Steve Cotter
The following piece was written by Brodie Sguerzi, a regular little bloke customer and the guy that put together our lifting chains packages. Thanks Brodie.
Chains are an invaluable yet simple piece of training equipment, and only limited to uses by your imagination. They can be used as:
- Accommodated resistance, similar to Resistance Bands without the overspeed eccentric’s and harsh effects that bands can have on the CNS (Central NervousSystem). The primary objective of this is to achieve adequate resistance throughout the entire range of motion of lifts like the squat, bench press and deadlift.
- Straight weight, to be added to bodyweight exercises such as chinups, pushups and dips without the use of a dip belt. Either by draping them around the neckor by making a loop with the use of a carabiner and wearing the chain like an ammo belt.
- Can also easily be added to a cable attachment to put a new spin on old favourites.
*Showing the proper setup of the bench and squat for chains..
*The setups for conventional and trap bar variations of the deadlift.
Recommended amounts of chain needed for the given lifts.
BENCH PRESS 1RM
Under 90kg – 1 chain per side
90kg – 180kg – 2-3 chains per side
180kg+ – 3 chains or more per side
Under 90kg – 2 chains per side
90kg-140kg – 2-3 chains per side
140kg-180kg – 3-4 chains per side
180kg+ – 4 chains or more per side
So you’re looking at buying a bench press? Lots to consider.
Firstly let’s define what a bench press is. In short, it’s a weight bench with a built-in bar rack. So something you can rack a barbell on at one end, lie down on (under the barbell) and bench press off. Lots of variety, including option to incline or decline, squat off, butterfly, preacher curls and leg extension attachments etc etc, but that’s it in a nut shell.
So when you’re ready to go – think about these points:
Have a look at your program and think about what you will be using the bench press for (or what you need to get out of it).
Ie. Is it just for barbell bench pressing, or will you be using dumbbells as well? Do you want to do leg work on it (some movements will require a separate leg extension attachment), curls (separate preacher attachment), shoulders / back (may require lat pull-down attachment) or squats (requires moveable bar holders), incline or decline work etc.
It’s important to consider all of these things and ensure that the bench you get will allow you to complete the workout you want to complete.
How much weight can it handle?
This is sooooo important with the amount of cheap shit you can find on ebay and “reputable” bricks and mortar stores (nope – not naming names).
Think honestly about what and how you will be lifting and ensure the bench you buy is strong enough.
Read the ads carefully, and please please ask about the weight ratings. Think, if you’re 80kg and benching 50kg, your bench needs to be rated to at least 130kg. Assuming you’re going to increase that bench press – you should be looking for benches rated to at least 200kg.
And if the seller can’t give you a weight rating – go somewhere else. Or be prepared to wear a barbell – sooner or later.
Is it nice and heavy and stable?
You do not want a light and poorly constructed bench press that is going to wobble everytime you press the weight. Not only is this unsafe it is really annoying when you are pumping some serious weights. You want your mind 100% on the job and not on the status of your wobbly bench press.
Where is the barbell holder situated?
This is a really important one because the barbell holders are often in really stupid places. The arms should also be in the right place. You do not want to have to lift the bar from a position that is behind your head. This is important.
Go back to the first point. Can you do the exercises you want to do? Can you bench press, can you dumbbell press etc etc. Lay down on the bench and get a feel for where you would be lifting the weight from
You need to make sure the bench will not prohibit you from safely completing your movements.
Is the price good?
Have a look around and find an equivalent bench or two and get an idea of price before committing. While you really don’t want to buy a cheap shitty bench, you also should make sure you don’t pay too much for a good one.
What is it, how long and what does it cover.
As a last point, if you are looking at used equipment – all but the last point about on warranty will apply when shopping. BUT – check for structural rust as it can weaken the bench – which can lead to broken bench = fall down under weight = messy face.
So you can check your hair when lifting? NO!!!
But for checking your form – if you train by yourself this is a must. It’s so easy to get complacent with your form when you work out by yourself – particularly as your weights increase. Meh – I’ll just lean into this squat a little and it will be easier and suddenly your form is shite and your back hurts a lot!!!
If you get into the habit early of training in front of a mirror you can learn to be objective about your form. And you can maintain it as your weight increases.
Now big mirrors are not that cheap. If you’ve got the cash, go for a couple of big ones that will give you vision of yourself from more than one angle. Low on cash? Go to ikea and buy a handful of little ones and join them together.
Got no cash? Mobile phones have some pretty decent video cameras in them. Use your mobile phone camera to record your form and watch it back.
Remember though – this is for checking out your form – not yourself. Ok – maybe one pose is ok……..
We sell a few different bars with spinlock collars and get a lot of anecdotal feedback from people about how unreliable they are and how easily they come unscrewed.
Unfortunately this can be correct if they are not tightened properly. And who wants to lift a loaded dumbbell over their head with loose collars on it?
The problem is with the size of the collars relative to the amount of torque required to lock the collars up tight. Basically, if the collars were three times as big, you’d be able to lock then up a lot tighter.
The good news is that there is an easy way to ensure you lock your spinlock collars up nice and tight and that is to use the plates themselves to tighten the collars.
What you need to do is:
- Put your plates on the spinlock bar (barbell, EZ curl, dumbbell, whatever)
- Put your collar on the shaft and tighten as tight it as you can with your fingers. This should ensure that the rubber ring on the inside of the collar grabs hold of your plates.
- Grab the outermost plate (the one hard up against the collar) and twist it clockwise, ensuring that your bar itself does not turn (I normally stand on the bar, or grip it between my legs). You should see the collar turn, tightening it up a little more.
And viola! That baby will not be coming off anytime soon.
I’ll try and get a quick youtube up to demonstrate the above – hope it helps someone out…..
We’ve talked a lot on this blog about specific exercises, training considerations etc without ever addressing the basics of what we are talking about. So if you’re at this site wondering what the hell we’re selling – here’s the basics.
What are free weights? This term typically refers to equipment that is used free of restrictions or attachments – that is, equipment where you are in complete control of its movements. Typically, we’re talking about steel bars with heavy discs (or weight plates) on each end to add weight.
Steel bars? These steel bars come as barbells – in a long form typically between 1500mm and 2200mm that is used with two hands, and dumbbells – a short version of barbells that ranges between 355mm and 500mm and is generally used with one hand (see images below). Other variations of bars include EZ curl / super EZ curl bars, trap bars, tricep / hammer curl bars and similar and while they exist, the most popular bars are barbells and dumbbells. These bars will generally have some form of locking collar on the end to preclude the weight plates from falling off the end of the bar when lifted.
Weight plates? These are the discs that fit onto the end of the bars you train with. These discs will come in a variety of sizes, and have a hole in the centre through which you slide the barbell and secure with the collar. These plates can either be fixed permanently to the ends of the bars (and form part of a larger set), or are able to be added and removed at will so as to increase or decrease the weight lifted on a particular bar. Weight plates can be made from cement (coated in plastic), iron, rubber coated iron or solely from rubber (called a bumper plate). They can also come in a solid style or style with handles (commonly called EZ lift plates) which can be used without a bar.
Why? Using free weights as part of your training not only helps to keep you fit, but it burns calories, increases muscle size, strength, power, and endurance, and increases bone density. However, unlike machines, using free weights rely on you to use correct technique (or form) when training so can have a higher chance of injury if used incorrectly. Start with light weights, get your form correct – and then go up in weights.
Now while there are a lot of machines that can help you to workout, including treadmills, lat pull downs, rowing machines, adductor machines etc etc etc we deal almost exclusively in free weights and their associated equipment. Why? I guess it comes down to our preferences. We choose to keep our stock range simple, and we choose to sell what we believe offers you the best value for money in train at home systems. In other words, while we could sell you a $2500 glute machine – we probably won’t – we’ll just tell you to go do some damn squats…..
A preacher curl is a more controlled version of a standard (that is, a barbell / dumbbell / EZ curl or hammer curl) curl, utilising either a preacher curl bench, or a preacher attachment for a regular bench (both shown below). You can also use an underhand grip (hands facing up), overhand grip (hands facing down) or a hammer grip (hands facing in) on a preacher curl.
This is an isolation movement in that by helping control the movement, it better isolates the biceps, which in turn helps to maxmise your curl time. To preacher curl:
- Start by adjusting the pad to the right height for you (your back should be straight, with the top of the pad close to your armpits).
- Irrespective of bar (barbell, dumbbell, dumbbells, EZ curl, hammer curl), your arms should be around shoulder width apart when you grab the bar(s).
- Slowly curl the bar(s) upward in an arc towards your mouth. Focusing on the bicep muscle as your curl, stop when your forearms have just passed vertical (and before you hit yourself in the mouth).
- Still flexing your bicep muscle, slowly lower the bar bar to your starting position (do not rest it back on the bar holder until you have completed your set)
As mentioned above, you have many variations of this exercise to try. Using an EZ curl bar, super EZ curl or hammer curl bar changes the area of the bicep you focus on and a change of grip to overhand focusses on forearms. Change to dumbbells and you can do alternating curls, single curls or hammer curls.
Lots of variations for killing those biceps but remember, focus on the bicep muscle as you curl to make sure it’s working hard, and breath as you curl – out coming and and in going down.
One last warning – if you’ve never curled with a preacher before – maybe go easy the first time. The day after – it will hurt!!!
So you’re buying a secondary bar and not sure about the difference between an EZ curl bar, and a super EZ curl bar (see images below).
Firstly – why buy one at all? Well, both EZ Curl Bars are designed to reduce stress on the forearm and wrist and provide a more comfortable grip while focusing on different bicep and tricep areas (but they can also be used on other body areas). In using an EZ curl bar for curls, your hands are slightly pronated (thumbs are higher than your little finger), which changes how the upper arm muscles are used (over just using a straight bar). It also tends to work your brachialis muscle more than normal.
Why choose a super EZ curl this bar over a normal EZ curl? To be honest, a lot of it comes down to personal taste. How you train and what feels right in your hands.
The super EZ curl bar is arguably a little better for isolating the biceps due to the angle of the handles. Unlike an EZ curl bar, with a super you can use a parallel grip (good for hammer curls, skull crushers etc). Also, a lot of people simply find that the extra angle in the super curl bar is more comfortable.
But both are very flexible bars and allow a range of exercises outside of curls like rows or even deadlifts.
So really, not a lot of difference. If your gym has both – try them out and see which one works best. You may find you use both.
If you’re looking to buy one or other, see if you can test both before purchasing.
If you can only afford one bar, but want a tricep bar and an EZ curl bar – maybe get a super EZ – it does a little of both.
I’m a little confused by this piece of equipment. A treadmill on a scooter?
I love this picture.
No idea on the source of these pictures – if they’re yours, let me know. happy to source them to you.
Well, our preference of EZ lift plates over solid plate at little bloke is pretty obvious by the stock we carry but I thought I’d outline why we think they are better.
Firstly, what is an EZ lift plate? An EZ lift plate, put simply, a weight plate with handles.
These handles serve a couple of purposes – firstly to allow the plates to be picked up and moved around easily and often with only one hand. Convenient if you are adding and removing plates from your barbells a lot.
Secondly, the handle can be used to hold the weight plates while you do exercises with them. With the latter – most things that can be done with a kettlebell can be done with an EZ lift plate (some easier than others), so simply by having these plates you immediately increase the range of exercises you can do. Think lunges, shrugs, snatch, curls etc etc. Don’t change plates on your dumbbells – just use the plates themselves.
So why is this better than solid plates? Often you need two hands to move you solid plates, or strong forearms to do it one handed. So why would you buy solid plates? The single advantage they have is that they generally have a smaller diameter across which means they take up less space (the EZ lift plates are bigger as they have a cut-out for the handles. As the difference is neglible, not much of an advantage in our opinion.
EZ lift plates – IMO, a much more flexible and valuable piece of equipment.
Worth noting that we also call our plates tri grip plates. Why? They have three handles, or three places to grip.
Lastly – Plastic coated vinyl plates – don’t bother. Other than they break if you workout with heart and treat them bad, they are twice the thickness of normal plates so take up twice the barbell real estate.
Deadlifts – one of the primary compound exercises all lifters should do. It’s a great exercise that targets the quads, hamstrings, gluteus muscles, lower back, traps and forearms. Combine them with squats, rows, bench, chins and you’re gonna get strong. But be careful – do it incorrectly and you’ll know about it.
Why do it? Of all workout exercises, the deadlift hits the largest amount of muscle groups in one go. You can do heavy low-reps, or try a 15 rep set – they are taxing. So why do them? They’re great for long term strength development, muscle growth (provided you’re eating) – and they’ll make you look wide!!!!
There are a few variations of the deadlift – so which one is best?
With your feet approximately shoulder width apart, stand in front of a barbell with your shins almost against the bar. Bending over, grab the bar with your hands a little wider then shoulder width. Keeping your arms straight, bend your legs and flatten your back. Lift your head so you are looking forwards, and pull the barbell off the floor by straightening your legs, then your torso until your body is completely erect, ensuring that you pull your shoulders back at the top. Then lower the bar back to the floor and repeat.
The Sumo deadlift is a variation of the conventional deadlift. The only difference is that you start with your legs far apart (like you see sumo wrestlers do when they dig in). When doing this variation, rather than focus on lifting the weight when doing this exercise, focus on keeping your knees out wide and pushing your feet out to the sides and keep your hips forward.
Why do this variation? It makes the hips and legs work more, and the back work a little less. You may also find that the stance of a sumo deadlift is more comfortable that a conventional. Depending on your build the sumo deadlift may be easier to perform then the conventional deadlift.
Stiff Legged (or Romanian)
The stiff legged or romanian deadlift variation starts a little differently. Use a conventional deadlift to get the barbell up. Once you have it up, bend over at the waist, keeping your legs straight and a slight curve in your back, until you feel good stretch in the hamstrings and then straighten back up. Do not go too far, and don’t put the bar on the floor between reps.
Why the stiff legged? It places most of the emphasis on the hamstrings and lower back and is better suited than the other two for using lower weights with higher reps.
There’s also a 1-legged deadlift, but we’ll leave that for another time. So which is better? That’s up to you to decide. Find which one works for you. If you’re still not sure from the above about the technique – youtube it. And remember – with heavy lifts – it’s all about the technique. Watch in a mirror, film yourself, get a mate to watch and get the technique right with lower weights. Then go nuts.
One final thing on the deadlift: Some people choose to use a mixed or alternate grip (one hand facing forwards, one facing backwards) when doing a deadlift – the idea being that as the bar is rolls out of one hand, it simultaneously rolls into the other which allows the lifter to grip heavier weights (the hands balance each other). Do it, don’t do it – whichever feels right (but if you do do it, make sure you switch the front and back hands between sets to ensure your strength development is equal).
Thought I’d throw a few random training terms up here with some definitions – comments welcome.
GETTING RIPPED: bodybuilding slang for extreme muscularizing (is that a word)? Or gaining awesome muscle hardness and definition through hard training and dieting. Also known as cutting. (Can also mean other things in other contexts – eg: going out and getting ripped)
ISOLATION: Exercising one specific muscle exclusive of others to focus effort on or protect that muscle. (In other contexts – eg: that feeling you get when it’s toooooo quiet)
PUMP: The enlargement and tightening felt in the working muscle resulting from the blood engorgement. (hmmm – other contexts??)
ATROPHY: Decrease in size and functional ability of tissues or organs. If you work out for 10 years and get big, then you stop working out, your muscles will begin to shrink or atrophy (Other contexts – what you win when you come first)
CHEATING: A method of pushing a muscle to keep working far past the point at which it would normally fail to continue contracting due to excessive fatigue buildup. In essence, where you are not strict with your form / technique in order to push your rep numbers up. (Other contexts – when you are not strict with your morals in order push your numbers up)
ESTROGEN: A female sex hormone. For example, in men excess testosterone is converted to estrogen sometimes leading to gynecomastia (breast development). (NO other context – just wanted to let all those taking tribulus and other natural wonder “test” drugs what may happen to their pecs)
SET: A set is a group of consecutive repetitions that are performed without resting. After the set, a rest interval occurs before you begin another set. (Other contexts – comes between ready and go)
TRAINING TO FAILURE: Continuing a set until it is impossible to do any more repetitions without assistance. Nowhere else in the world is training to fail a good thing…..
MAX: Maximum weight you can do for one repetition of an exercise. (Other contexts – that scary bloke on the supplement tubs – WTF is going on with that guy)
The list goes on but I think that will do for me…….for now.
So what is a Tricep bar – also known as a hammer curl bar? It’s an oval shaped bar that typically has two parallel hand placements that run through it’s middle and weight shafts on each end. Even though it is called a tricep bar, you can use it to work other body parts besides the triceps.
Similar to the EZ curl bar, you can use it to work the muscles from different angles and it can reduce the stress that a straight barbell can place on the joints in the arm (the wrists, elbows and forearms) by allowing for a much more ergonomic grip of the bar. Why? Ultimately, this will minimise the chances of injury (keeping in mind that you must have good form as well).
What do you use them for? French curls, skull crushers, bicep hammer curls and more. Run hammer curl exercises through your fave search engine to get a better idea. .
These are a great utility bar to have around – once you’ve started using one, it’s hard to go back. I say, if you’ve got the cash, grab one. They come in both standard size (25-28mm shafts) and Olympic size (50mm rotating shafts).
(FYI: for anyone not sure, the triceps are the large muscles located on the back of the upper arm. They are principally responsible in life for straightening your arm (extending the elbow joint). In weight training, they are secondary mucscles in all bench pressing exercises. They can trained using isolation or compound exercises – the hammer curl bar uses isolation exercises. And of course training them does add extra width to the guns…).
One of the core compound movements – we should all do a bench press or two. The following is my take on how to do it right.
To start, you will need a weight bench with uprights (barbell holders at the head of the bench), or a utility / FID (that’s flat / incline / decline) bench and a separate rack for the barbell. Make sure the bench you are using is rated to hold your body weight, and the weight of the bar and plates you are planning to bench. THIS IS SO IMPORTANT!!!! Bad hurt may follow if this is not the case, or you go over the weight limits.
Add the desired weight to your barbell (I can only suggest that if you are not sure here, try a few smaller weights, and build up to a poundage you are comfortable with – do not start heavy – remember you will do a few reps here so be honest and realistic). Place the barbell and weights on the rack, ensuring that it is at a height you can reach when lying prone on the bench.
Lie on the bench and place the soles of your feet on the ground, perpendicular to the bench itself. This will help support you through the movement. Hold in your stomach and press the small of your back onto the weight bench.
Grab the barbell at just wider than shoulder width (wrapping your hands around the bar – thumbs to the front) lift it off until it is in line with your shoulders and perpendicular, and then slowly lower the weight until it is a few inches off of your chest. Do not bounce it on your chest. This may also cause bad hurt.
Push the weight back up into the top position and repeat to the required number of reps. When complete, place back in the holders or rack.
It is really important that you focus on tightening your chest muscles as you move through the movement, concentrating on keeping the arms in the same line of movement throughout the exercise. Breathe out pushing up, and in while lowering the weight. Do not rush the bar up or drop it down – take your time and feel the movement.
Hmmmm. We’re debating whether or not to create a few short videos that display our equipment. We’d post on youtube, and hopefully it would help you guys out there who want to see more than an image on a page before comitting to buy.
But as shy introverted little blokes, we’re not sure that we want to post ourselves on youtube. And while the little bloke loves the limelight he is not to be trusted with handling the equipment after the toe nail incident (see earlier post). But, it seems like such a good idea.
We will see – watch this space …
Yes – we’ve starting stocking Olympic plates and bars – which begs the question to anyone new to training – what is the difference between Standard and Olympic?. There are a few obvious differences worth pointing out:
- Diameter (of hole, bar) : Standard bars are around 25mm in diameter, whilst Olympic bars are a more noticeable 50mm.
- Weight (of bars) : a standard bar weighs anywhere from 5kg – 12kg, an Olympic one from 12kg-20kg plus (and as the weight of the bar is included in the total weight – this adds up).
- Strength (of bars) : Olympic bars can handle hundreds of kg safely (check with the manufacturer though), with some being rated at well over 500kg. Standard bars, on the other hand, may start bending at somewhere over 200kg.
- Bar ends: Most Olympic bars have what are called revolving ends. This means that the ends of the bar freely rotate. This combats the problem of added torque when doing certain exercises – less torque means less eventual bar warping, as well as lessening the possibility of hand slippage or strain.
- Cost : the major factor in the favour of standard bars and plates is the cost, which is generally considerably cheaper than the Olympic counterparts.
So how to decide? Think about where your training is going. Honestly! If you want to compete in powerlifting, you want to get HUGE (for real), or you are doing these already – go with Olympic. You’ll need them sooner or later and it’s cheaper in the long run.
If you’re planning on working out at home – want to get some muscles or get in shape – go the standard plates and bars. They are cheaper, easier to get, and will do the job fine.
(Note: While we offer Olympic and Standard plates at the same price (most do not), we sell the olympic bars at a higher cost because they cost more to make – that’s because they’re stronger and have moving bits)….
Wow – stocktake sales are tiring!!! But the extra business did give us the opportunity to test out our new postage module and paypal checkout which passed with flying colors (although our courier company pick-up bloke was not happy to see us over and over again – apparently our stock is heavy).
We’ve now started to list our new range of stock – our olympic bars and plates, new standard bars with chrome Q collars in various sizes, our baked enamel standard weight plates and a few other bits and pieces. Still to come are our range of benches (been too busy to put example ones together for the pictures), and a new range of packages.It’s exciting – the first range was great – this range is better!!!
Need anything? Send us an email with your idea for a new training package and why it will work and if we like it and list it we’ll give you 15% off the total cost of one…
We’ve also had a couple of people mention the little bloke – we’re pleased to say he is recovering from his forehead stitches – barely a mark. He did however decide to poke his head out of the side of a swing while swinging on it a couple of days ago and has made a nice scab on the top of his head. When will he get bigger and start helping us (and the courier man) lift this heavy stuff???
Definitely the busiest week in LBF history.
Last weekend was the completion of the stocktake and subsequent launch of the STOCKTAKE SALE – NOW EXTENDED FOR ANOTHER WEEK (if you missed that). Monday was testing of the new postage module for the website (and removal of two stiches from the little blokes forehead – now that his toenail has finally grown back he elected to split his head open last week), Wednesday the delivery of the remainder of our new stock (over 20cubic meter or 15 tonne – long day of unloading), Thursday the implementation of the new postage module and inclusion of Paypal to the website, Friday we promoted our barbells on the ozbargain website and the website was inundated Friday and Saturday with visits, queries and sales – our new postage and paypal modules certainly got a workout).
Saturday it was back to the warehouse for some re-organising, and a few used equipment runs, Saturday night the site shut itself down for 12 hours (suddenly popped up working fine this morning???), and Sunday, more work on getting the new stock arranged and online.
Suddenly it’s nearly Monday again. Wheeeee!!!! What a ride.
For those of you who bothered to read all of that, firstly thanks for indulging, and secondly – watch out a few items from our new product range popping up on the site this week at discounted prices. They’ll be in there somewhere.
Ohh the joys of counting. In anticipation of our new stock range arriving, we are conducting our first ever stocktake – of both our new and used range.
The bad new is that we have closed our doors for a few days to focus on counting (one dumbbell, two dumbbells, three dumbbells, four dumbbells, kill me, kill me, seven dumbbells …). ARGHHHHHHHH!
The good news is that we are planning our first ever stocktake sale. Our crazy sale! Little bloke’s gone crazy! Crazy prices! Crazy! Never to be repeated! Crazy Crazy! (glad I got that out)…
Next week for one week only we’ll be selling off a lot of stock at heavily reduced prices – new plates at $2kg or less, EZ curl bar and tricep bars at cost – should be fun.
Damn it, now I’ve lost count of my dumbbell handles. One friggin dumbbell, two friggin dumbbells……..
What the?? A skull crusher is a weight lifting exercise that works the triceps muscles – called “skull crusher” because of the way the weight is lowered toward you head (ie if you let go of the weight while doing the exercise – uh ohhh on the skull). But flexible – it can be performed almost anywhere with a variety of different weight types.
To perform the skull crusher exercise, pick up weights with an overhand grip. Lie flat on your back on a weight lifting bench or other flat surface. Raise both arms straight up above your chest. Your arms should be perpendicular to your body. This is your starting position. Bend both elbows and carefully lower the weight toward your head. Keep your upper arm perpendicular to your body as you do this. Only your forearms should move as you bend your elbows. When your arms are bent at a 90 degree angle, raise the weight again to the starting position. This is one repetition of the skull crusher exercise.
The skull crusher exercise can be performed with dumbbells, a barbell or an EZ curl bar. Dumbbells are safest since they allow you to drop the weight if it gets too heavy. Barbells force your wrists to remain in a stationary position and an EZ curl bar does the same but lets your wrists turn at a more comfortable angle. The skull crusher exercise can be done while lying down on any flat surface, but a padded weight bench is the most comfortable.
You should try and use a relatively small size weight for the skull crusher exercise. The triceps are a small muscle group and do not require heavy weights. In fact, heavy weights will prevent you from using good form and wont work your triceps properly. If you have trouble lowering the weight, it is too heavy (remember the skull crusher thing?)
Go nuts – we all need a good set of triceps…
How often do you do push-ups as part of your training? If your answer is never then you are denying yourself one of the greatest movements for chest development ever – and as a bonus – being a compound exercise the push-up has the flow on effect of working your triceps, your back and your abs in conjunction with your chest. And the best part? No fancy equipment required…..
So what is the correct form for a push-up? Here’s my take on it.
Position yourself face down on the floor, balancing on the balls of your feet (with your toes curled forwards) and the palms of your hands with your finglers facing foarwards. Your hands should be slightly wider than your shoulders with your body in a straight line from head to toe. Your butt should not be poking up, and you should not be sagging through the middle (this is called the plank position).
Slowly bend your arms and lower your body to the floor while breathing in, keeping your elbows close to your torso, stopping when your elbows are at 90 degrees. Push yourself back up to the plank position, exhaling as you do and ensuring that your body stays flat throughout the movement.
Initially, stick to this strict movement only and focus on correct form rather than numbers. Once you are happy with your form, start to increase the numbers. It’s harder than you might think to get these numbers up – they were much easier as a kid!!!!!
There are many variations of the push-up (incline, decline, wall push-ups or even one-armed push-ups) but we suggest you stick to the basics for a while. Push-up are hard – but worth the effort for some great chest development.
Little bloke Dave just found the following video on YouTube titled “Plate Sit-Ups Functional Abs Hip Flexors, Shoulders and Triceps Exercise”. I called it “damn, that’s gotta hurt!!!!!”.
What do you think? Anyone game to try it out – let me know what burns the most!!!
For those of you that have been and met with our team, you’ll know we have a very special group of helpers.
Unfortunately, one of the team (who happens to be the model for our site banner) had an incident with a 5kg weight plate. I know, you’re thinking “workcover”, but we managed to bribe him with ice-cream so we’re all good.
His toe a couple of weeks later – not so good…..
I never thought I would see the day when I would say that we have sold too much stock. But here we are – in 10 weeks we have sold close to 5 tonnes of gym equipment. WOW!! Thank-you to everyone we’ve seen in that time for giving the little bloke a go.
This means we’ve surpassed our sales expectations on our new stock range, and have pretty much sold out of 5kg and 10kg plates (And are low on our other sizes), with our new stock on back order and still a few weeks away. This means that we can not presently supply new 5kg and 10kg plates. We’ve marked these as sold out – including all of the packs that contain these plates – until further notice.
However – we will take orders on these plates and packs and as an added bonus we’ll cut 5% off any orders made that contain 5kg and 10kg plates while we are waiting. So make an order – pay 25% of the cost and wait a few weeks at most.
Meanwhile – all other plates are still in stock and selling – including our highest selling dumbbell kit – the 19kg pack and our recent, and hugely popular, 12.5kg EZ curl pack.
And our new stock coming in? You’ll have to wait and see, but there are a couple of subtle changes to our range os stndard EZ lift, tri-grip weights plates, some Olympic size plates coming in our EZ lift tri-grip style (offered at $2.50 a kg), as well as a new great range of benches – amongst other bits and pieces.
Watch this space….
Happy Easter to the Little Bloke visitors – we hope it’s a safe and healthy one for all and we look forward to working with you to get rid of the Easter egg bellies in the weeks to come.
Graeme, Paula and crew.
It’s funny, when life gets too busy it’s often your health that gets neglected. I don’t mean in the sense that no-one gets to the doctor but more that good diet and sufficient rest and exercise are all passed over. Ironically, I think these are the things we need most when life gets too busy (we also need them if we want to get giant guns).
So how do you get giant guns? Nope – not bicep curling 10 sets of 30 reps of 100kg (is that even possible for anyone?). You get big guns by doing big exercises. Start with the basics – your compound exercises – these are the ones that work out more than one or two muscles. Your bench press, squat, deadlifts, rows and a handful more (google it). Combined with consuming enough calories to allow you to grow muscle (this means eating more than you burn in your average day), and adequate rest (not just enough sleep, but enough time between workouts), you’ll get big guns.
Then do your bicep curls to bring out their definition.
There’s so much literature out there on this – it’s worth a read. Or check out the local body building forums – lots of advice available.
LBF has now officially been open online for 7 weeks and finally I’ve gotten around to a blog post. I’d like to start by thanking all those people who have supported us in the past few weeks while we found our feet. We’ve already had a few repeat customers, plus a few clients led to us by word of mouth and the feedback has been great. Keep it coming – we’re taking it all onboard (good and bad) and growing both in our service, and in our range of products.
I debated including some workout tips in my first post (how to get perfect peaks on those biceps kinda thing), but that’s kinda been done to death on the internet – and they probably know more about it than me. So i’m gonna include a short youtube clip I came across earlier today. Now bodybuilding may not be your thing but this is pretty cool – remember to watch it with sound….