How to Get Fit without a Gym

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A quality gym is one of the best investments you can make. Regular exercise will keep you happy, healthy, and fit. But sometimes we may not have access to a gym. You might be traveling or facing financial constraints. The good news is, by making use of your own body weight, you are able to replicate a lot of the benefits of a gym right in your own home.

The basic principle is pretty simple – you find ways to create resistance for your muscles through the weight of your body. Here’s a sample workout you can start with. As always, you should check with a doctor before initiating an exercise routine.

Pushups – We can use pushups to work our arms and chest. Find out how many you can comfortably do. Then do that number every other day. Each week, add one more pushup to your routine. Within a year, you’ll be doing over 50 pushups a day, and will see a dramatic transformation of your upper body.

Squats – Squats are an amazing exercise. They work your upper legs and buttand are quick and easy to do. Find out how many you can comforably do and then do them every other day on the opposite day of your pushups. Add one more to your routine once a week to make sure you keep challenging your body.

Planking – This exercise transforms your core. Plank on your squats day. See how long you can comfortably plank, and then add 5 seconds per week.

For each of these exercises, remember that form really matters. Check out some videos of each exercise on Youtube to make certain you are doing them correctly.

If this simple exercise routine gets a bit dull, you can step up your home-based body weight workout by getting You Are Your Own Gym: The Bible of Body Weight Exercises. It is written by an elite Special Operations physical trainer, and provides an ingeniously simple, rapid-results, do-anywhere program for getting into amazing shape.

To your daily growth!

Jamie

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5 Simple Ways to Improve Your Figure

No matter your height, no matter your weight, there are a few simple hacks that you can do to improve your over figure in just a week or two. Don’t get me wrong; healthiness, good fitness, and attractiveness are traits you need to work on over the long run if you want to achieve great results. But let’s be honest – you and I both love quick, noticeable improvements. In fact, those early victories can serve as massive motivators for the hard, long-term work needed to maximize our health.

So, if you have ever wondered what you can do to quickly improve your figure, here’s a short yet powerful list for you. Try them today and I guarantee in two weeks, you feel a sense of real progress and significant accomplishment.

  1. Smile. Seriously. People will perceive you as more attractive. You’ll also feel better. Win/Win.
  2. Drink water. It makes your skin brighter and clearer. It also amps up your energy, which makes you seem more exciting and attractive. Again, Win/Win.
  3. Wear clothes that fit. Go to your closet. Find some items that don’t fit well and are from the same clothing category. Dump them. Then go to the store and get fitted for 1 item that actually fits. Not good at discerning fit? Bribe a friend who is and take them with you. I’m not even joking. The correct fit makes anyone and any body type look better. You may need the clothes altered. You may need to go straight to a tailor. I remember the first time I had a shirt tailored. Amazing the difference it makes.
  4. Do pull-ups. OK, there is only so much progress we can make without actually working on your body. Do pull-ups. Seriously. Pull-ups (and chin-ups) can be done right in your own home with one of these awesome pull-up bars. My friend gave me one and I’m so grateful. Hang it your bedroom door frame and do a couple pull-ups or chin-ups whenever you pass through the doorway. Especially your shoulders will see dramatic improvement in just a couple weeks. And your friends will notice it too, especially if you followed tip #3 and you are wearing a shirt that truly fits.
  5. Plank. Google planks. There are endless varieties. I plank for 5 minutes and I’m drenched in sweat. No gym, no gym fee, no expensive equipment. Your whole core can be transformed and you’ll definitely see results in a couple weeks.

It’s already Spring. Get ready for summer by hacking your figure. You are 2 weeks from a big personal upgrade if you commit to these 5 simple steps. Good luck!

To your daily growth!

Jamie

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How to Run your First 5K

I have a few quick questions for you. Do you want more endurance? Do you want a healthy heart and lungs? Do you want sexy calves? Do you want a medal to hang on your wall next to your other accomplishments? Of course you do. Let’s run a 5K.

Why a 5K? Well, they are pretty easy to pull off in a short time. A 5K is a great intro to the world of running. After you knock one of these out, you’ll know if you want to do this more often, or if it is not really your kind of hobby. And hell, it will be a great story! Lace up your shoes, and then check out my step-by-step guide to running your first 5K.

Step 1 – Find a Race. Just Google 5K and your hometown. Select the next upcoming race and register for it. Depending on the race, you’ll probably need to drop about 50 dollars on the registration. For the price of a night out, you are doing something great for your body.

Step 2 – Get Ready. You might get hurt if you hit the course without any prep, so do your body (and finish time) a favor a do a little prep before race day. Pre-race training may be a bit boring, but remember, we’re doing this for the endurance, healthy heart and lungs, sexy calves, and medal, so do your prep.

Step 3 – Get your Gear. Don’t be that guy on race day who looks like a damn fish out of water. Get some good shoes, prep your tunes, and seriously, get this book. It runs through everything you need to know to kill it on race day. It got me from being a running rookie to finishing a 5K in under 21 minutes.

Step 4 – Have fun. If you’ve been following the diet and training recommendations in Run Faster from the 5K to the Marathon, you’ll be set on race day. So have fun and savor the experience. It’ll all be over in a few minutes, so push your hardest and get ready for your new personal record!

The next time you are hanging out with friends, you’ll have a great story to share, and best of all, you’ll have a great excuse for one more beer – you’re carb-loading for your next race!

To your daily growth!

Jamie

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How to Create A Killer Push Up Workout

Today my arms hurt. So do my chest, abs, and even my upper legs. Why? Push ups. You may just think of push ups as a simple body-weight exercise that you do to work your upper arms, but in this post I will show you push up variations and a push up routine routine that will leave you breathless, sweaty, and sore all over. Ye with weak constitutions, turn back now. Next stop, Jamie’s Push Up Challenge.

Your Push Up Guide – The Basics

First let’s look at some basic information about the lowly push up. This is Push Ups 101. This is Push Ups Boot Camp. This is the Push up Guide you never knew you needed. OK, enough with all the hyperbole. Here are answers to a few push up questions you may have wondered about.

What is the best push up form and push up position?

As we’ll see in a few moments, there is no single right way to do it. There are tons of push up forms and positions that target different muscles. The only common rules are, don’t use your back muscles to raise or lower yourself, don’t engage in sudden, jerky movements, and don’t push beyond your current abilities to the point of injury. Your abilities will increase slowly week-by-week if you stick at it. Not the sexiest answer, but that’s the truth. Pushing too hard all at once will lead to setbacks. Slow and steady wins the race here.

How often should I do push ups?

I will turn a few heads with this advice, but don’t do them everyday. I’ll repeat it. Do not do push ups everyday. Shocked right? Well here’s the thing. Your muscles don’t actually grow during exercise. I know it looks like they do, but that is just the extra blood flooding into the tissue. Instead, the real muscle growth occurs during your rest time. If your goal is to get stronger and get bigger, then you should never hit the same exercise everyday. Rather, you should do your push up workout every other day to maximize the benefits.

What are the benefits of push ups?

Why should we do push ups? Weight loss. Muscle mass gains. Self-discipline. Or in other words, you’ll look great, feel great, and know inside that you are great.

How many calories does a push up burn?

A single push up burns approximately 1 calorie.

What is the Push Up Record?

The record for the most non-stop push ups stands at 10,507. Damn, son.

What is the Most Useless Push Up Trivia?

Mexicans call push ups “lagartijas” which means “lizards” because, well, obviously…
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Jamie’s Push Up Challenge

There are tons of different push ups styles out there. But I’ve combined my all-time favorites into a simple, brutal push up challenge. Here’s how you do it.

Step 1: Stormy Seas Push Ups

You are a ship at sea, and boy, the seas are rough. Instead of lowering your body with both arms as you do in standard push up, you lower only one arm, keeping the other arm in the same position you would be in at the top of a standard push up. Raise yourself back up. Then lower yourself with the opposite arm. If you get the motion right, you’ll feel your self tipping from left to right like a ship in stormy seas.

Step 2: Triangle Push Ups

These are evil. Form a triangle by touching your index fingers to each other and thumbs to each other under your chest. Then push yourself up and down. Enjoy (evil laugh).

Step 3: Pirate Push Ups

Do a standard push up with one twist. Lift one of your legs of the ground and hold it up in the air instead. Alternate from leg to leg as you do the push ups.

How Many Push Ups Should You Do?

Let’s figure out where your current fitness level is at. Start by doing 1 Stormy Seas Push Up for each leg. Total: 2 Pushups. Then do 1 Triangle Push Up. Total 1 Push Up. Finish with 1 Pirate Push Up for each leg. Total 2 Pushups. Your grand total is 5 Push Ups.

That was easy, right. Well if it was easy, add 1 of each. That’s 4 Stormy Seas Push Ups, 2 Triangle Push Ups, and 4 Pirate Push Ups – a total of 10. If that’s easy, go for 15. If that’s easy, go for 20. I started at 40 and now am at 90. My goal is to reach 150. Find out where you are at. Do the push up challenge once every other day. Aim to level up your push ups once or twice a month.

If you love the idea of using body weights at home instead of shelling out lots of money each month for a gym membership, then get Mark Lauren’s You Are Your Own Gym: The Bible of Bodyweight Exercises. I absolutely love this book and use it as a source of inspiration for designing my own workout plans. The author is an absolute bad-ass, in the best meaning of the word. Here’s the bio from the book.

Mark Lauren has effectively prepared over 700 trainees for the extreme physical demands of the most elite levels of the special operations community. He is a Military Physical Training Specialist, Special Operations Combat Controller, triathlete, and mixed martial artist. Lauren broke, and still holds, the Department of Defense’s long standing “underwater record” by swimming 133 meters, on one breath, subsurface, for 2 minutes and 23 seconds, until losing consciousness.

Mark’s book is all you need to learn even more about push ups and other body weight exercises and get yourself into killer shape all from your own living room.

Jamie

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Calling All Self-Improvement Bloggers

Hi, I’m Jamie Moyer. I’m a pretty regular guy. Grew up in a small town in a very middle-class family. Attended a state college. Nothing fancy. However, 8 years ago, I made a decision that changed my life forever. I decided to prioritize my personal growth.

Many people I knew would grow a lot during their childhood, teenage years, and college – but after graduation, their progress would slow and eventually almost stop. They’d settle into a routine with work and family and that would pretty much be it. I made a vow 8 years ago to focus on personal development day after day, month after month, year after year.

In those 8 years, I earned an MBA, traveled to several countries, lived and worked abroad, started 3 businesses, taught at a university, and met many amazing people along the way. I’m still a pretty regular guy, albeit one who has had some great experiences that have taught me a lot.

Recently, I started this site, Improve My Life This Year, in order to codify the best self-improvement tips I have learned during these 8 years. I am in the process of creating a 365-day curriculum of self-improvement that will super-charge someone’s personal development.

This is where you come in. I’m not a genius. I’m not smarter than the next the guy. The only reason I consider myself an expert on self-improvement is this – I’ve been a good listener. I haven’t created radical, revolutionary ideas that will change the world. Rather, like a good museum curator, I have identified and gathered the best ideas of others to assemble this curriculum.

And this is why I need you. Do you have valuable self-improvement ideas? I’d love to hear them. I’m sure each self-improvement blogger out there has incredible advice to that both I and my readers would love to hear. During the month of June, I will be opening up my blog to ideas from other great bloggers.If you have a piece of great advice, I am giving you the opportunity to showcase it here. This site is less than 2 months old and already ranking well in the U.S. and internationally.

If you have a piece of great advice, I am giving you the opportunity to showcase it here. This site is less than 2 months old and already ranking well in the U.S. and internationally.

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For context, we are already ranked around 2 millionth out of about 1 billion sites globally, and we are increasing week by week. So if you’d like to get your advice and link back to your own site out in front of my audience, please contact me at jamiemoyer622@gmail.com

Here are some guidelines for your submission.

  1. Your article should be around 500 words (Maximum 1000 words). This site aims to deliver advice that can be read in just a couple minutes. If your post is about a longer idea, feel free to link back to more complete advice in one of your own posts on your site.
  2. Your article should be original and you must agree not to republish it anywhere else. Reposting it on your site or elsewhere is plagiarism and risks both your site and mine being penalized by search engines like Google.
  3. Keep your posts PG. I use damn, hell, and whatnot, but please no f-word, explicit sex advice, and whatnot. I personally do not have a problem with that style of writing and you are free to link to an article on your site that includes those, but Improve My Life This Year aims to be a comfortable place for readers all age groups, religious backgrounds, etc.

If you have questions, please contact me and I’ll be happy to answer them. Once you send me a possible post for submission, I’ll respond within 24 hours to let you know if I will post it and if not. That way you will know whether or not you are free to submit it elsewhere or on your own site.

I look forward to hearing your self-improvement ideas, and I thank you in advance on behalf of my audience for your willingness to share your advice with so many people.

To our self-improvement,

Jamie