The Ultimate Steel Mace Workout

The Ultimate Steel Mace WorkoutThe problem with owning exercise equipment like a steel mace  or a steel club is that workouts are a little hard to come by. You can’t exactly stream this stuff over Netflix, so you’re left with ordering obscure DVDs over the internet that may or may not be what you’re looking for. Because these DVDs don’t sell high volumes, the cost of them is often higher than you’d pay for something like The Avengers on Blu-Ray. Of course there’s always home-made YouTube clips of guys swinging around steel clubs, but the production leaves a lot to be desired.

What Onnit has done is taken the next logical step in its fitness empire. The company is not only bringing steel maces and steel clubs to the masses, its now also providing the workout routines so you can make the most of this equipment. A smart move, I thought, but what I like even more is the delivery method. Gone are the days of physical media, either in the form of a video tape or disc. No longer will you have to wait days or weeks for your video to arrive in the mail. Onnit is now offering digital downloads, the first of which is The Ultimate Steel Mace Workout.

The advantages to a digital download are plentiful. Pay for it, download it, and begin your workout within a few minutes. No waiting by the mailbox for your video to be delivered. Going on the road? Copy the video file to your laptop, tablet, or even your smart phone to take it on the road with you. Back it up to a USB stick and ensure you never accidentally delete or lose it. The workout can be with you wherever you go–indoors or out–and you won’t have to be tied to your television.

But enough about the format, let’s talk about The Ultimate Steel Mace Workout itself, which is hosted by Mr. Onnit, Aubrey Marcus. Aubrey has designed a workout that’s suitable for any skill level. Obviously, newbies will want to start with the lowest weight possible, and savages can go for the heaviest if they can handle it. Aubrey then puts you through an intense full body workout that pushes your cardio and strength to its limits, and then brings you back down with a yoga cooldown.

The video also features “extras” or bonus features in the form of videos that outline the history of the mace and techniques you’ll use in the video to ensure proper form. Priced at only $5, it’s cheap enough to take a gamble on if you own and use steel clubs. Don’t have steel clubs? Onnit is selling them right now at a 10% discount.

I haven’t yet purchased The Ultimate Steel Mace workout, but I’m definitely intrigued, and with Onnit’s track record, I’m sure it’s a quality product.


The Howler Primal Bell from Onnit Now Available!

The Howler Primal Bell from Onnit Now Available!I know everyone is all excited about the new Onnit Zombie Bells, and I am too. I say “bells” plural because there is more than one. Aubrey Marcus said on a recent episode of The Joe Rogan Experience podcast that there will actually be four Zombie Bells kettlebells in various sizes. So, it looks like this will be an ongoing thing for Onnit: kettlebells in four different varieties each with a different look. (Update 10/28/13: Zombie Bells now available!)

The first of these stylized kettlebells was of course the series of Primal Bells. Three were first released; the chimp, the ape, and then the orangutan, and yesterday the fourth in the series was released. This one is called The Howler!

The Howler is the smallest of the Primal Bells, weighing just a half pood, or 18 lbs. in terms we can all understand. This one looks like a screaming chimp with his fangs exposed. While it’s the smallest of the Primal Bells, it’s definitely the most menacing looking!

Like all the Primal Bells, The Howler is crafted from chip-resistant iron that will stand up to regular wear and tear and rusting as well. You can use this like a savage and keep it on display in the meantime. It’s a work of art that’s perfectly balanced, meaning you can use it like a traditional kettlebell and it won’t feel any different. It just looks infinitely more badass than a cannonball with a handle attached to it.

Check out the whole line of Primal Bells at Onnit, and if you haven’t bought any yet, you can buy all four in a bundle at a significant savings. You can save 15% total when you purchase all at once! But make sure you save up a bit of money for the Zombie Bells which are now available, just in time for Halloween!.

Check out this 360 degree view of the new Howler:

Onnit The Howler Primal Bell Kettlebell 360 Degree View

Onnit Kettlebell Wristguards

Onnit Kettlebell WristguardsWhen I first started doing kettlebells, I did them without the help or guidance of a professional. I used videos and would follow along as best as I could. The one thing that jumped out to me right away was the kettlebell hitting my wrist. I wasn’t sure if I was doing them wrong or if the kettlebell slamming into the wrist was something you have to get used to.

It turns out that doing certain moves like snatches, cleans, and jerks, will lead you to bump your wrist with the kettlebell. If you’re doing things properly it shouldn’t really hurt you, and it definitely shouldn’t cause any broken bones–in which case you’re really doing things wrong–but I can completely understand how some people would find it uncomfortable. Fortunately, there is a solution.

As I mentioned, I use kettlebells and have experienced slight discomfort from time to time while using them, but I never thought there was actually a product specifically for kettlebell users who want to protect their wrists. Of course Onnit comes to the rescue again, emailing me information about its brand new kettlebell wristguards.

While at first glance the Onnit kettlebell wristguards just look like overstuffed wristbands, they actually contain plastic “armor” inserts for additional protection. The wristguards work as sweatbands as well, so the kettlebell won’t slide around as much as it would on a sweaty arm. And don’t think that this is a product that is only for beginners who don’t know what they’re doing. Onnit recommends its kettlebell wristguards for beginners and intermediate users who are still working on their form, and for expert users who perform vigorous high-rep kettlebell exercises regularly.

Save Up to 25% Off Onnit Fitness Gear

Save Up to 25% Off Onnit Fitness GearAnyone who follows this blog knows that I’m a fan of Onnit as a company and of its products. I often talk about new products when they drop, review them whenever I can, and let you guys know when an Onnit sale is going on. Typically the sales are on the Onnit supplements and food products. Rarely do any of the Onnit coupon codes or discounts apply to the wide range of Onnit fitness gear.

That’s why I was surprised when I got an email from Onnit saying that it was slashing the prices of all its fitness gear by up to 25 percent. You’ll have to visit the Onnit Fitness page to view all the details, but you could save as much as 25 percent off any of the gear and exercise equipment that Onnit carries.

For the unfamiliar, Onnit has available traditional cannonball-style kettlebells, along with its line of Primal Bells, steel clubs, steel maces, clubbells, battle ropes, jump ropes, medicine balls, and more. It’s too much stuff to list right here, but there’s stuff if you want to build muscle or stuff if you want a more cardio-oriented workout as well.

This Onnit fitness equipment sale runs for less than a week and ends on October 9, 2013 at 11:59 CST, which is 12:59AM EST or 9:59PM PST. If you’ve been curious about any of the fitness gear that Onnit carries, now’s the time to place an order. I doubt this stuff will be on sale again before the end of the year.

Onnit One Pood Chimp Primal Bell Kettlebell Review

Onnit One Pood Chimp Primal Bell Kettlebell ReviewA month or two ago Onnit dropped the first in its trilogy of Primal Bells, the one pood chimp kettlebell. What is a pood exactly? One pood is the equivalent of 36.11 lbs. Why measure a kettlebell in an obscure measurement of weight? Well, the origins of kettlebells can be traced back to Russia, where a pood is a unit of measure that’s in use in that part of the world.

The first of Onnit’s Primal Bells features the face of an angry chimp. As Joe Rogan says, he looks like he’s ready to bite your dick off. Growing out from the side of his head between his ears is the handle you use to swing and lift the kettlebell. One might think that because this Primal Bell is crafted in the shape of a primate’s face rather than a perfectly round, symmetrical ball that the weight wouldn’t be distributed evenly, which is something you would notice when working out, but I can say that this isn’t the case. The chimp kettlebell is perfectly balanced, so when you’re blasting through a kettlebell workout, you won’t even notice the difference between a traditional kettlebell compared to a Primal Bell.

In terms of construction, this is a solidly built piece of equipment. It’s crafted from the same high quality chip and rust resistant coated iron as Onnit’s regular kettlebells, but it’s infinitely more badass. What’s different from regular kettlebells aside from the chimp face is the thicker handle, which will work towards improving your grip strength even more compared to a conventional kettlebell.

So can I recommend that you buy the chimp Primal Bell over a regular kettlebell? If you’re in the market for a kettlebell between 30 and 40 lbs., then I can absolutely recommend it. The face and thicker handle alone justify the slightly higher price tag compared to a plain ol’ cannonball with a handle sticking out of it. You’ll get just as good of a work out, boost your grip strength, and you can display them in your house when they’re not in use. Pick up a couple of chimp Primal Bells, the new Keith Weber Extreme Kettlebell Cardio Workout 2: Exceed Your Limits DVD and prepare to have your dick kicked in the dirt.

Onnit Pull-Up Bar Review

Onnit Pull-Up Bar ReviewI remember a long time ago my dad had a pull-up bar that he would use to do chin-ups. I can’t say that I recall him ever doing any chin-ups, but I know that it was a metal bar that ran across the the inside of a door frame. I’m not sure if it’s something that he bought or something that he designed himself using items from a hardware store. The downside to that particular piece of exercise “equipment” is that it was permanently attached to the door and couldn’t be removed without using a drill or, at the very least, a screwdriver.

I wrote a couple months ago about how you can do pull-ups without any equipment. Grab onto the top of a sturdy door and chances are it’ll be strong enough to support your weight while you do pull-ups. Throw a towel over the top if it hurts your hands, and that’s about all you’ll need. The beauty of doing pull-ups this way is that it’s perfect for those times when you’re away from home, staying with friends or family or at a hotel.

Now, when you’re at home, a real chin-up bar can be quite useful. It can save you from having to make any costly door repairs or from ruining any towels. I recently had the chance to use the new Onnit Pull-Up Bar and was quite pleased with how it performed. I was content with doing pull-ups the resourceful way without any equipment, but using the Onnit Pull-Up Bar is like the difference between driving a 20-year-old car that’s seen better days and cruising around in a brand new luxury vehicle. Sure, at the end of the day both do the same thing, but one’s a lot nicer and more comfortable to use.

The great thing about the Onnit Pull-Up Bar compared to my door method or my dad’s plumbing pipe contraption is that it’s easy on the hands, and you feel safe when you use it. After installing a couple of discrete J brackets above the door of your choice, you can then slide the Onnit Pull-Up Bar into the brackets and begin doing chin-ups. With this particular bar, you have the option of three different grips: a wide grip, a close grip, or a parallel grip, providing some flexibility to keep your body challenged. When you’re done, the bar can be removed again in seconds to be stored in a closet or under a bed.

If you want the functional strength that Joe Rogan preaches about, doing pull-ups is practically a necessity. Doing kettlebells certainly works some of the same muscles, but nothing works the same muscles like doing pull-ups. I like to think that I’m a physically fit guy, but using the Onnit Pull-Up Bar for the first few days was truly humbling. I could only do a few, and that was with some struggling. But now I have a new goal to work towards, and a new piece of equipment to help me along my way.

How to Do Tricep Dips with a Chair

How to Do Tricep Dips with a ChairAnyone who reads this blog regularly knows I’m all about doing exercises from the comfort of my home, and doing them with as little equipment as possible. This is why I love kettlebells: I can use them and then store them away easily when I’m done. There are also exercises I do that don’t require any equipment at all, for example, using a door to do pull-ups, which I wrote about a month ago.

Another exercise I do that uses things you already have around your house or hotel room are tricep dips. This is on the same level as the door pull-ups in terms of difficulty, working the elbow and shoulder joint along with the tricep muscle. Best of all, it’s easy to increase difficulty as you get more comfortable with the exercise and it becomes easier.

To start with tricep dips, first find a chair. Sit in it as you normally would but with your hands gripping the front of the chair on each side of your body. Push yourself up off the seat, moving your hips forward so your butt is now hovering in the air in front of the seat. Bend your elbows to 90 degrees and lower your self down while staying close to the front of the chair, then push back up. Repeat 10 to 20 times.

With this exercise, the closer your feet are to you the easier it is. If you find it too easy, move your feet out further. If that’s still too easy, grab a second chair and put your feet on that. This is a great, easy exercise that you can do in between commercials when you’re watching TV, or as a way to stretch at work when you’ve been sitting at your desk too long.

After the jump, check out a video tutorial of tricep dips with a chair:

Continue reading

Onnit Kettlebells

Onnit KettlebellsI’ve been writing about Onnit a lot lately, mainly because it seems like it’s releasing a new product every week or so! This week, it’s kettlebells. Yes, Onnit has sold kettlebells for a long while now, but I believe that the kettlebells available were another brand. Much like how they sell Blendtec blenders and don’t have an Onnit brand blender. Well, now Onnit has introduced a series of kettlebells that are good enough to carry the Onnit name.

Appearance wise, Onnit kettlebells feature classic kettlebell styling. Like Joe Rogan says, they’re cannonballs with handles attached to them. They feature a chip-resistant coating suitable for indoor or outdoor use at the gym or the home. These are real kettlebells, not those rubber-coated ones with grooves in them for your legs and arms that you see Jillian Michaels swinging around on The Biggest Loser.

I’ve mentioned before that I use a 20 lb. kettlebell in my workouts and could move up to a 25 or 30 lb. kettlebell for more of a challenge. The thought of that weight seems daunting enough to me, yet Onnit has kettlebells that start at a modest 15 lbs. and go all the way to 90 lbs. I couldn’t imagine tossing those around, but some people do!

To wrap things up, I encourage anyone who’s looking for a new exercise routine that combines cardio with muscle-building exercises to give Onnit kettlebells a try. It’s the one exercise I’ve found that I’ve been able to stick to because not only does it kick my ass, it’s fun to do and makes me feel better too. If you’re still on the fence, check out this great introduction video after the break:

Continue reading

How to Do Pull-Ups with a Door

How to Do Pull-Ups with a DoorWhen it comes to exercise, I’m all about doing it inexpensively with as little equipment as possible. If I don’t have to leave my house, that’s even better. I’ve talked about doing kettlebells at home with YouTube videos for guidance, but I also do pull-ups (or chin-ups, to some) at home or away.

So how do you do pull-ups without a pull-up bar? Easy! You can do them with a door. Start by opening the door up wide enough so you’re away from the door frame and away from the wall. Then drape a towel over the top so your hands won’t get any splinters. Next, with your body pressed up against the front or back of the door, grab the top and lift your feet off the ground. Then, pull yourself up ’til your head is above the door. Finally, slowly lower yourself to the starting position, then repeat!

Obviously you’ll want to do this on a door that’s strong. I always give the door a little test by grabbing the top and pushing down on it to see if there’s any play. If not, you’re likely good to go. The number of hinges a door has is a good indicator of its strength as well. Three or more hinges and you’re likely safe. I’ve found doors in hotels are also great as they’re built for strength and durability.

Aside from being an exercise that you can do virtually anywhere at no cost, pull-ups (on a door, or traditional chin-ups) work your back muscles, your biceps, and your forearms. Another benefit is that they don’t take much time at all! Try working in reps of pull-ups during commercials when you’re watching TV, or each time you enter that particular room.

Here’s a video of a guy demonstrating this technique. He’s really excited about doing pull-ups!

Continue reading

What are Kettlebells?

What Are Kettlebells?As Joe Rogan puts it, kettlebells are cannon balls with handles attached to them. Big balls of iron that you swing around to lose weight and build muscle and endurance. They come in a variety of weights depending on your skill level and the exercise you want to do, ranging from small 10 lb. kettlebells all the way up to 100 lbs. or more.

Kettlebells are a Russian creation, dating back to the 1700s. Around 1960 or so, they made their way into the United States. In 2001, the first instruction certification program was created in the USA by Dragon Door Publications and Pavel Tsatsouline. Thanks in large part to Joe Rogan, kettlebells have experienced a tremendous increase in popularity the last few years.

I started doing kettlebell exercises in the spring of 2012. After a month or so of doing kettlebells four or five times a week, I started noticing a difference in not only my strength, but my body as well. I was losing a great deal of weight while gaining muscle. It was the first exercise that I not only enjoyed doing, but was seeing the results of rather quickly! Best of all, I only need to spend about 30 minutes per day to get an amazing full-body, ass-kicking workout from the comfort of my living room!

What I like best about kettlebells is that you don’t need any fancy equipment, a gym membership, or even a whole lot of room do start using them. I purchased a couple of 20 lb. kettlebells from a store nearby and was using them that day. There are a wide range of instructional DVDs available to guide you as well as a wealth of YouTube videos. If you’re tired of riding a bike, running outdoors, or if you’re not interested in joining a gym or purchasing expensive equipment, a set of kettlebells might be something to investigate further.