Friday, September 16, 2011

Ab Ripper X – Argh!

Trainer Tony Horton, creator of Ab Ripper X says, “I hate it, but I love it,” which sums it up pretty well.  Ab Ripper X is a series of 11 exercises done 25 times each.  The moves vary in intensity and in which muscles they work.  Some, like Bicycles or Pulse Ups, I could do right away; others, like Oblique V-Ups, are still hard.  Once you get the hang of it you can do the entire routine in 10-15 minutes.  When I first learned Ab Ripper X I was only using it occasionally and saw little progress.  It wasn’t until I began doing the whole series at least three times per week that I started seeing results.  After a month I could see parts of my rib cage that had been hidden for decades. 

Trying to lose fat around the middle is a frustrating business.  Fat loss tends to work from the outside in; if I go on a diet the first places I thin out are my face and my hands.  If I keep at it my lower legs and arms will start to look better.  The middle of the body, especially right around the navel, is the last to go.  I imagine that there are good biological reasons for this – the body trying to protect the major organs and all that – but it can be very annoying.  The benefit of a program like Ab Ripper X is that it changes  the normal progression so that you are lose proportionately more fat from the middle than you would otherwise do. 

With Ab Ripper X, as with all exercise programs, when it becomes easy your condition will no longer improve.  At that point you can go on line and find lots of ideas for making it harder again: holding a weight and adding ankle weights, for example.  I’m currently using 5 lb. ankle weights; we’ll see how long that lasts! 

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