Thursday, October 14, 2010

What Did You Say? Some Exercise Terms - Part 1

The day has slipped away from me, so I am going to give you ten oft heard terms bandied about the gym.  They could be used by a professional, like your trainer or the triathlete you strike up a conversation with in the locker room. Or the bonehead who looks like he belongs on the bottle of pills he popped to bulge that way and that always drops the weights, rather than put them down.  Huuuuuuuuu, yea!  (He uses them to sound cool and apparently I have an issue with apes like that.  LOL.)

That said, knowing these terms can help turn a conversation into something more educational when everything makes sense.

Abs - your abdominal muscles.  Often buried by too much Ben & Jerry's, you can see them give you definition again, if you are committed.  Sometimes called a 'six pack' and for the really buff and eight pack.  My favorite gratuitous example:
Gerard Butler in "300".

Aerobic - This does not have to involve Jane Fonda or leg warmers.  Instead it simply means getting your heart rate up higher.  Basically, you should be able to do whatever you are doing - running, spinning, stair climbing - and still be able to get a sentence or two out before panting.

Anaerobic - Like it core word cousin, your heart rate is up.  But in this case, way up.  You are probably panting and talking involves "uh-huh".  This is great for training your heart, but is not for beginners or those with health problems.  

Bi's and Tri's - Biceps and triceps.  The biceps are the muscle on the upper part of the front of your arm.  The triceps are their partner on the back.

Carbs - Carbohydrates.  Basically starches and sugars.  These are the basic building blocks of our body.  Our brain literally lives on them.  Anyone who says to you, "You should try this new low-carb diet", is really saying, "I am sick of you beating me at Trivial Pursuit, lose some brain cells, so I have a chance."  Okay, they're not really malicious, they are just misinformed.  Carbs are in almost everything we eat, particularly fruits and vegetables, without which you will get gout -ewww.

Circuit - Moving from exercise to exercise with little rest between and then repeating the order.  This can be on machines or set up with other equipment, it's just whether you are doing a loop or not that makes the circuit.

Crunches - No potato chips are involved here.  Instead this is the overall name for a number of moves that improve your abdominals.  Almost all involve using your abs to pull yourself up or over slightly to 'crunch' your top and bottom abs toward one another, then release.  This is different from a sit-up in which you come all the way up into a seated position. 

Curl - Basically bending a limb back toward your body.  There are arm curls and leg curls.  While you curl your arm back toward the front of your body, you should know that if your leg curls forward instead of back toward your butt, it's time to seek medical attention.

And with that smarty-pants answer, I think I am a little punchy and better wrap up.  I will post more tomorrow, but in the meantime, if you have any specifics terms you are curious about, please comment.

Yours in Health,

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