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  • Fitness Advice...

    Hello Soldiers and Soldiers to be,

    My name is Nick Hargrove, I'm enlisting this Summer as an E-3 because of my college experience, and I'm hoping to get into Infantry because I love excitement, combat training, and adventure,, I operate at my best under pressure, which is weird I know, and some of my best mentors also served in the Infantry. I have a lot of martial arts experience, I'm a student of Exercise and Movement Science, and I'm a personal trainer. I've also spent a little time studying nutrition (general and sports nutrition), so I think I'm pretty well qualified to answer any health and fitness related questions you might have accurately.

    I noticed a lot of people want to give fitness advice on this forum, and while I think that it's great that you all want to help each other, I see a lot of information getting posted on here that lacks credibility, and by credibility I don't mean quotes from wikipedia. Even though your intentions might be to help, and you might even be in great shape yourself, you shouldn't give any advice without REALLY knowing what you're talking about because people can and do get hurt on the premise of bad advice from someone who is trying to "help" and believes their fitness level qualifies them as experts. At the very least it might not help someone reach their goals at all, which is a waste of time for everyone. For example telling someone to do hypertrophy training (increasing the size of muscle fibers) in order to improve cardiovascular endurance (the body's efficiency using it's energy systems). Imagine you wanted your car stereo to be louder, so you approached a car audio specialist to ask them how to go about doing that, and they suggest you get a quieter exhaust system. Sure the effect may be that you are able to hear the stereo better, but did it really get louder? No. That's the best analogy I could think of.

    I'm offering free advice to anyone on this forum because I care a lot about having a fit and injury-free National Guard, and I am willing to cite my sources that I give advice from. My expertise is assessing fitness, and prescribing SAFE and realistic fitness plans to all populations, including injured and special populations. I've got real world experience in the field, and I love nothing more than to talk about my passion with other people, so fee free to shoot me your questions, and I will try my best to give you a quick and accurate response for nothing in return that a simple "thanks."

    Last edited by Hargrove.Spc.541; July 5th, 2012, 01:27 AM.

  • #2
    Re: Fitness Advice...


    I'm looking to increase my push-up count, Im about 6'0 and 195lbs. currently I can only Max out about 45 push-ups before reaching failure. However every once in a while I can go to about 55 with ease, whats with that? and how can I eliminate the variations and just get it up to 70, 80+ any info is good info, thanks/


    • #3
      Re: Fitness Advice...

      Hey man,

      Try switching up the way you do them a little bit to confuse your muscles and encourage growth. (BTW 45-55 is pretty good, probably as good as you'll get without changing up your routine). 1) You can turn your wrists inwards (wrist abduction) so that your fingertips are facing each other, which will put more emphasis on your triceps. 2) You can put your hands out really wide, which will put more emphasis on your chest. 3) You can do "diamond" push-ups with your index fingers and thumbs touching, which also puts more emphasis on your triceps. 4) You can alternate reaching down with your shoulders instead of your chest, which will put more emphasis on your anterior deltoid (front part of your shoulder). 5) You can build more Type II fibers, also known as fast twitch fibers, by adding a clap in the middle. Go down, push-up, and quickly clap! 6) You might even consider holding a resistance band with it over your back to add some resistance to your push-ups. I would actually recommend doing each style I just mentioned about 20-25 times every other day to see improvement, 3-4 days a week. Your goal is to improve endurance, so just stay with a schedule, and keep progressing. Don't let yourself backslide because you don't want to put in the extra effort to do 10 more reps, which I see most often with people regressing or stuck on a plateau. People tend to set a goal and reach it, then they forget to increase their goal. It's hard to say what's holding you back with limited information.

      Push-ups also rely heavily on core-strength. So doing planks on your elbow with your hands apart (shoulder width), and side planks on your elbows can help you do more push-ups.

      As far as going from 55 to 45, it depends on how much you rested between sessions, what you ate, if you gave up mentally or truly failed physically (the latter happens less often). There are a lot of factors that could have an affect on your max.

      I would stop trying to reach your max every time you train if that's what you're doing. I would test your max about once a month, but vary your training so you can avoid reaching a plateau. If you're doing them the same way every time, I guarantee you will hit a plateau eventually, or at least you'll progress at a slower rate that way.

      One tendency a lot of people who reach a plateau have is to try using different supplements. Most of the benefits are more psychological (placebo), and regardless of what the label says, science hasn't proven most of them effective. I do recommend keeping your protein intake up to help with building muscle, and creatine phosphate has been proven to decrease recovery time between sets when used properly.

      Hopefully this answers your question! Good luck!

      Last edited by Hargrove.Spc.541; July 3rd, 2012, 07:44 PM.