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About Exercise and COPD Part 3b - Building The Home Gym

Posted Sep 12 2008 7:18pm

OK, so where were we? Oh yes. That’s right. In part 3a we came to the realization that you have the money and the space for a gym that offers just about everything you need for the total strength training experience. You have a fitness level that is challenged by COPD (or maybe you don’t), but nevertheless you are fit enough that you can wrap your mind around the notion of traditional strength training as a vehicle to a healthier you. So, what do you buy? OK, I’ll answer that. But first, a story.

I have a friend. The sweetest of people I have ever known. I love this person more than anything on the earth. She has the sweetest soul you could imagine, and she has a heart of gold. I would do anything for this women, including eating my own left foot if I had to. She really is my best friend. Yet, like millions of consumers out there, she is a tad on the gullible side when it comes to shopping for her fitness needs. She is a home shopping junky, and one day, while getting her HSN fix, she spotted what I will only refer to as “The Abdominator”. I won’t use the actual name of the product, for that would be more flattery than it deserves. Suffice it to say that this contraption was the biggest T-Total, colossal piece of shit anyone could spend fives cents on, let alone the $150.00 it cost her to buy it. Sheeesh! And it was hazardous, too. Just climbing into the damn thing was more dangerous than playing leap frog in a Baghdad mine field. It was ridiculous.

Now I ask you, reader, what do you think happened with my friends “Abdominator”? I’ll give you two guesses. Nothing and nothing. Unless, of course, you consider collecting dust under her bed as being something.

Granted, she had the best of intentions, that’s for sure. Yet, I think even she would have to admit that she was not really ready to make a commitment. However, she did have enough motivation that if this product had yielded results within the first couple of workouts, no doubt she would have continued to use it. But the product didn’t work, and so she lost interest.

My point in mentioning the above story is to get you to understand that a) you need to be ready to make a commitment. Don’t waste money on strength training tools if you have not decided to be serious about your fitness goals; and b) of the many options you have when it comes to buying fitness equipment, the one you MUST avoid at all costs is the “equipment that isn’t worth a shit” option. And believe me, the fitness equipment industry is loaded with heaping, steaming piles of the the stuff. Now, on with the meat and potatoes of this column.

Bands and cables are fine, and so are pushups. But what about pumping iron!

You have thought it and thought about it. Yeah, you lack the raw experience of training with weights, but you want the feel of it nonetheless. You want to feel cold steel in your hands. You want sweat pouring off you brow and you want to know what it feels like to breath like a freight train. So, what do you do?

im-bench

The IM-2000 can be a total body trainer, from head to toe. You can train the upper body and the lower body

If you are relatively new to the fitness game, and a complete novice to the iron game, then I think the best option at this point is something like the Ironmaster IM2000:

I love the concept that Ironmaster brings to the table. I have known this outfit for years, and their tools are some of the toughest and most rugged in the business. The flagship product of this company is the Ironmaster IM2000 Self Spotting System. The IM2000 is a fixed, Smith-Machine-like device that can be fitted with accessories. Not only can you do basic movements like squats, deadlifts, shrugs and bench presses with extreme safety, but add-on tools will permit you to perform just about any other exercise you can imagine.

im-bench

The IM-2000 can be a total body trainer, from head to toe. You can train the upper body and the lower body

The Ironmaster IM2000 Self Spotting System is SAFE. It allows you many of the benefits of free weight training, while eliminating almost all of the risks inherent to free weight lifts. The IM2000 takes up relatively little space and can easily handle multiple hundreds of pounds. As a total gym, I can’t recommend it enough.

The price of one of these gems (gyms) is reasonable, but it ain’t chicken feed. You are looking at spending between $1000.00-2000.00 depending on which package you buy. AND you will have to assemble it. So, get out your tools.

Yeah, this is not your average, run of the mill universal gym special of the week. This is the real deal. Heavy Duty. Heavy Metal. The IM2000 Self Spotting System ain’t for sissy’s.

Now, you may be asking yourself, “Look, I have COPD and I am not sure that building muscle is something I can do. Should I really be considering this”? Hell Yes! You most certainly should build muscle and, yes, you should consider this. Look, the more muscle and strength you have on your upper shoulders, back, ribs, diaphragm and chest, the stronger you will be and the stronger your breathing will be. Not only that, but progressive resistance training of this type places stress on your bones and joints in such a way as to make them stronger as well. Furthermore, certain movements like squats and deadlifts compress the diaphragm and expand the airways in such a way as to help clear them better than many types of exercise.

OK, so Ironmaster seems like a great way to go. But what if you want the experience of moving a weight that is not already locked into place? What if you want to get better balance, as well as tight, firm and yeah, larger muscles? Well, this too is doable, but you will need a tad more space, a tad more money, you will need a bit more courage and ideally a training partner.

In part 3c, we will look into this option in detail. Stay tuned.

This entry was posted on Monday, January 15th, 2007 at 10:13 am and is filed under COPD - Lungs and Exercise, Combat Training, Traditional Strength Training. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.
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