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Newbie's daily routine-seems lacking in abdominal effects

 
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Huffdogg



Joined: 13 Jul 2009
Posts: 29
Location: Northwest Indiana

PostPosted: Sun Jul 19, 2009 12:56 pm    Post subject: Newbie's daily routine-seems lacking in abdominal effects Reply with quote

Here's what I've been doing, in various orders:

50x shovel coal
50x churn butter
50x chop wood
50x flip lever
50x back scratch
50x ab burner
finish out the time with a few full arm swings just to stretch out the arm and shoulder muscles; I usually have enough time left for 3 or 4 swings on each arm.

Oddly enough, even with the inclusion of a movement that is supposed to work abs specifically, I'm just not feeling anything in my abdominals. I'm feeling lower back very much from the shovel and wood chop movements, but my abs just aren't lighting up. I don't know if that's just a matter of my abdominals being stronger than my lower back, proportionately, at this time, or if I could be using better movements to focus on them, or if I'm not doing something right. I've watched and re-watched the videos and I'm stumped. Anyone have any advice on that front?
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phayze



Joined: 11 Jul 2006
Posts: 297

PostPosted: Thu Jul 23, 2009 7:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sounds like nice routine! I have a similar experience with the abs - most moves don't really seem to hit them for me, which could be caused by several factors -

1) The those muscles are stronger than other core muscles, so they aren't being stressed as much as, say, the low back or

2) Those muscles are weaker than the other core muscles, and we're shifting the pressure to other muscles without even being aware of it

It's hard to say which, but mostly I'd advise watching your posture - if you're letting your shoulders slouch or your hips meander too far from under your neck then you might be causing undo stain on your back.

For my money, I've found that Stoke the Furnace hits me in the gut more than any other moves. I combine it with shoveling, using the image of scooping coal and tossing it into a boiler directly in front of me. The further the hammerhead gets from you on the toss, the better.

Check out my youtube videos if you get a chance. I think that the samurai moves, and reaping wheat in particular are great for general core training, though you'll probably feel them more in the obliques.

Good luck, and let me know if your find any good ab solutions!
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Huffdogg



Joined: 13 Jul 2009
Posts: 29
Location: Northwest Indiana

PostPosted: Thu Jul 23, 2009 10:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Phayze. I actually posted something in the Moves section last night that I just tried for the first time. That Leaning Tower (as I'm currently calling it) move and a roughly shoulder to waist Chop the Tree found their way into my routine last night, and I can feel it all through my abdominals. I have seen a couple of your videos, but I will definitely look out for those specific moves you mentioned. In my fitness log I actually made myself a note to try Stoke the Furnace next time I decided to mix it up.

I'm leaning towards getting a truck tire delivered to the backyard, both for sledge work and for a sandbox for my kids. The downward pull from the waist of a good, solid overhead swing is a great ab killer; I've demoed out some driveways and sidewalks and split some wood in my day. I could see that being a valuable addition to my routine.

I will pay closer attention to my posture, but I don't *think* it's my problem. I'm not exactly new to exercise/weightlifting, though it has been a few years. More than likely I'm thinking it's just that my lower back is weaker than my abdominal core. I've never thought of my abs as a particularly strong muscle group, but I know for a fact that my low back has always been disappointing and years and years of competitive swimming built me up a solid abdominal core (flip-turns ftw!). I'm sure some of it is there, even if it's covered up with a couple of inches of blubber these days.

Thanks again. Cheers!
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Huffdogg



Joined: 13 Jul 2009
Posts: 29
Location: Northwest Indiana

PostPosted: Mon Jul 27, 2009 2:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So I've struck onto something else here that seems to be working much better, mixing things up a bit differently.

50 x stoke furnace
50 x churn butter
50 x drive fenceposts
50 x scratch back
50 x flip lever
50 x chop tree (the swing going from approximately head height to just below waist)
20 x Leaning Towers
30 x Hammer Balance Squats

The Hammer Balance Squat is basically just doing standard squats, but holding the hammer out at arm's length while doing it, holding it in an upright position by the bottom of the handle. I do 10 while holding it in both hands, then 10 in one hand and another 10 in the other hand. The concentration required to keep the hammer upright does a great job of taking my mind off of the workout my legs and glutes are getting Wink
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I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.
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Huffdogg



Joined: 13 Jul 2009
Posts: 29
Location: Northwest Indiana

PostPosted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 5:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In keeping with what I've seen from some others here on the shugg forum, I've decided to replace my balance squats at the end of my routine with normal moves of some kind. Lately I've just been mixing it up, usually doing the basic shovel movement to finish out my time. I may work in something new and different instead, though. Yesterday this workout was really difficult for me to complete. I'm finding that by the end of the week this one is really wearing me down, which I count as a good thing. No residual soreness, but definite muscle fatigue.

I also upped the 50 x stoke furnace to 60x for now.
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Huffdogg



Joined: 13 Jul 2009
Posts: 29
Location: Northwest Indiana

PostPosted: Mon Aug 03, 2009 10:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

this is a cross-post from my facebook note where I have been sort of blogging all of my fitness efforts (of which shugging is only the latest, although currently most prominent facet). I think I may have hit on something that will give solid results over a good deal of time without needing extensive modification for awhile (except to stave off boredom). This is going to be my weekly workout for now.

M-F:

1. 14 minutes sledge routine as follows-
70 x Stoke Furnace
50 x Churn Butter
50 x Drive Fenceposts
50 x Back Scratch
50 x Chop Tree
50 x Flip Lever
30 x Leaning Tower
Shovel Coal to completion of time

2. Circuit routine as follows, without rest-
10 x push-ups
Run .6 mile
10 x push-ups
Run .6 mile
10 x push-ups
(Trying to keep an eye on time and shooting for improvement)

Today's test with this workout shows that part 2 takes almost exactly 14 minutes also (clocked 11.5 minutes total running time for the whole 1.2 miles, I'm assuming the pushups all together were around 2.5 additional minutes). That puts this entire workout under a half hour. I'm exhausted, and sore in a good way, and I feel that this gives a well-rounded workout for my entire body that I can be very satisfied with.

Sat & Sunday-
I should have my medicine ball completed by the end of the week; I intend to spend the weekend on medicine ball exercises, pilates focus area workouts, and perhaps a 3-mile run if I can find one that's not as grueling as the one in Odgen Dunes. Just something for sustained cardio for a half hour plus.
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Bushranger



Joined: 02 Jul 2009
Posts: 368

PostPosted: Tue Aug 04, 2009 1:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just a quick question, are those numbers for one arm only or both combined? If both, how do you get that many reps in 14 minutes?! I must be going much slower and more controlled in my movements then most people as I see numbers that would take me well over 14 minutes quite often on this forum.
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Huffdogg



Joined: 13 Jul 2009
Posts: 29
Location: Northwest Indiana

PostPosted: Tue Aug 04, 2009 8:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

No, those numbers are total. I do half on each side. Sorry, should have been clearer about that lol.
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I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.
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Bushranger



Joined: 02 Jul 2009
Posts: 368

PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2009 3:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Phew! I was thinking I was hanging around uber athletes of the Eastern Bloc era. Laughing
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Huffdogg



Joined: 13 Jul 2009
Posts: 29
Location: Northwest Indiana

PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2009 11:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This workout has evolved a bit over the last week to include more reps of some key exercises. I have to say that I am definitely feeling it in the abs much more than I ever expected to when I first began Shugging. My only concern now is the lack of workout for the chest. Any advice on how to get more pectoral involvement in a "useful movement" sort of way, or should I just get into doing more of the old standby "degraded beast?"
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I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.
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phayze



Joined: 11 Jul 2006
Posts: 297

PostPosted: Fri Aug 21, 2009 7:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I noticed some pectoral burn with churn butter, but that was largely "upper pecs".

Have you seen my Giant Wrench video?

Personally, I just like doing pushups. It's a simple, fun exercise with loads of variations for the standard version gets too easy. Pushups also give me some "bonus burn" through my entire core and my hamstrings.

Respect the beast. -_^
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Huffdogg



Joined: 13 Jul 2009
Posts: 29
Location: Northwest Indiana

PostPosted: Fri Aug 21, 2009 1:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah unfortunately I'm just naturally exactly the opposite of you when it comes to push-ups. I generally consider them nothing more than a necessary evil. Hopefully before too long I'll get access to a pool and not have to worry too much about it. Hope, hope.
_________________
I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.
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