Strength and Power Training


As if all the hype about “natural male enhancement” weren’t enough of a challenge to men’s self-confidence, a recent study at the University of Central Florida found that ads featuring muscle-bound male models can distort men’s body images the same way rail-thin swimsuit models do women’s. Look, guys: “Fit” doesn’t…

Get fit for summer's hottest sport—in less time than you'd think

Smart trend or exercise fad? We sorted out the tired and the wired to find 2004's fitness winners.

Think of this as your adventure tool box: We’ve got the strength moves you need for peak performance, from core training to flexibility building to explosive power drills. Ramp up your fitness plan with these six workouts, guaranteed to get you buff—and ready to play outside.

Why I not stiff and sore right away after weight training, but sore the following two days? Should I work through the soreness?

Do bodyweight exercises like push-ups and abdominal crunches need to be done every other day like weights, or are they more effective when done every day?

My sons are 10 and 13 and are becoming interested in strength training. I'm opposed to introducing them to even moderately heavy lifting (benches, squats, etc), but I have gotten them dumbbells for light arm exercises (no more than 10 lbs. at a time) and encouraging them to do push-ups, pull-ups, and sit-ups. Do you have any advice on specific exercises for pre-teens and early teens? Also, what precautions should be taken, and are there any definite no-no's at this age? Mark Sokol Akron, Ohio

I injured my right shoulder/rotator cuff by overdoing military presses 10 yrs ago. I still lift, but seem to hit a wall on the bench press. Is there another exercise that hits the se areas as bench pressing but won't be as likely to aggravate the cuff issues? And will keeping my arms at a 90-degree angle when reaching the lowest point on a bench press (as opposed to bringing the bar all the way down to my chest) limit or eliminate the stress placed on the injured shoulder? Chris Atlanta, GA

I going on a ten-day whitewater rafting and kayaking trip this winter. I've just spent the last several months training for a marathon, but have virtually ignored my upper body. Can you offer me a good strengthening regimen so I'm not ready to cry after each day in the rapids? Alissa Mears Washington, D.C.

I see plenty weight lifters in my local gym wearing lifting belts. Sure, they seem like a good idea, but do they actually work? Michael Mirolli Seattle, Washington

How is weight training for snowboarding different from weight training for skiing? Anne Davis Boulder, Colorado

Bill Phillips, the most successful fitness author in history, is a Colorado recluse who got his start teaching muscleheads how to use steroids. He's cleaned up his act—his Body-for-Life program runs street legal, and it works—but he's still banking on a timeless American urge: Everybody wants to be huge.

Want an easy plan to prepare you to climb a mountain—say, 14,494-foot Mount Whitney? Here's a five-week program that'll whip you into summit-worthy shape.

The fittest firewoman alive is transforming her colleagues into elite athletes. When she's done with them, she's coming after you.

Have mountain-bike designers finally solved the riddle of the perfect ride?

For a faster, stronger you, take it slow (with a grain of salt)

True fitness follows the adage "Use it or lose it." Turns out the brain follows the same rule.

The first four weeks

Forget what you've heard about calories, pounds, carbs, or miles—the adventure athlete's real secret to optimal weight is all about energy management

Cold-weather battle plans from the nation's top fitness advisors

Come, stymied climbers, stalling cyclists, and ragged runners--behold the year's top ten fitness trends. We promise they'll punch up your performance.

Don't be put off by the funny equipment—functional training builds real-world skills in the gym

Science is sprinting toward the super-enhanced athlete. Say hello to tomorrow's inhuman being.

As often as we use them, we can't help but abuse them. Or can we?

A modest bit of indoor dedication now will give you the freedom to let loose this winter

Don't sweat that impending trip — it's easy to keep in shape away from home

All recreational sport is really quite simple: You run. You jump. You throw. What's more, it's pretty easy to get good at these things.

Toughen your midsection, and hardy arms and legs are sure to follow

Weeks nine through 12

Weeks five through eight