Wednesday, December 1, 2010

$1 Fitness Game Changer

Today's AM Workout was a very simple one:

13 Rounds of:
* Dance Dance Revolution (Expert Speed)
* KB Swings: 32kg x 20 (in this case the 20 swings were the active recovery for DDR)

Pretty pedestrian workout under normal conditions. The game changer: Something I picked up from the Dollar General kid section for only a dollar.


Thats right kids, a snorkel. Not sure if you can see it in the picture, but I stuffed part of a paper towel in the bottom section. Just to make it that much harder.

I can tell you this, not only is the workout harder, but the fat burning effects are increased dramatically. The heart rate goes up because you are increase the lactic acid being made in the absence of oxygen, similar to training at altitude. This is similar to the Tabatas, but instead of compressing the rest, you are restricting the airflow. I can definitely feeling the EPOC effects hours after the workout.

Is this something you should do all the time? No. Is it something you can use? Most likely, especially in the following two circumstances:

* You don't have a heavy enough bell, now you will get similar effects from a lighter bell.

* You have an injury. May you can't do snatches, but you can do swings and make them harder.

Again, it costs $1, and I have always said no unitaskers (Bosu's, PVC pipe, treadmills, etc.) in a home gym. If you ever need to keep your head slightly underwater while swimming, there you go. So essentially, this game changer is free. You may even already have it.

Check it out and tell me what you think.


david said...

Faizal S. Enu said...

Hi David,

Thanks for posting. It actually kind of proves the potential efficacy of this type of training.

What is the "performance goal"?

Is it getting a high score in DDR? No.

Is it maximum number of swings? No.

It is getting the Heart Rate up? Yes - performance goal accomplished.

Should you always trained with a snorkel, would that be a good idea? Definitely not, especially when high skill work. But could it be used judiciously? Yes!

david said...

I'm not tracking how it proves it.

I don't disagree that it makes it "harder", but is it better? Wouldn't it make more sense to get your heart rate up by moving a heavier bell?

I'm also not tracking the "performance goal accomplished." You didn't exceed your performance, you actually lowered it.

While it might make some logical sense that "if you can do it with less oxygen, you can do it better with more" in reality, that's not how it works. Just because it's logical, doesn't mean it's physiological.

Faizal S. Enu said...

1) I didn't swing a heavier bell because I did not have one! And even if I did, if would have to weigh, by my estimates, around 140 lbs. Not real practical brochaco.

2) I did set 2 PRs on individual songs, so I don't know what measure you are saying performance went down.

One thing that you have to realize is that in sport, it is not just being able to perform well, but being able to perform well when deprived of oxygen. Instead of waiting to get there under the natural progression, why not recreate it -- sounds like efficiency of the training process to me.

Faizal S. Enu said...

And yes David, it was better. I got done in 1/2 hour what would normally have taken 75 minutes. I am still feeling it today.

Faizal S. Enu said...

David, I don't think you read the part of the post where I the heaviest bell I had was 32kg. I bet to get the same effect I would have needed a 70kg bell. That would probably cost at least $400, I spent $1. That is smart and logical.

Don't get me wrong, sometimes I swing up to 194 lbs. Not knocking heavy swings. Sometimes you have to make due with what you have.

Faizal S. Enu said...


Recently set a number of DDR records. I guess performance is improving. Noticed I had more wind later into the harder songs...