Exercise Questions | What's a really effective exercise?

When I do sit-ups, I hook my hands around my neck. Then from the lying down position I sit completely up, and get both my elbows to touch my kneys, without letting go of my hands behind my neck. I usually do 100 - 150 a day... And I can tell that this really works, and gets my heart pumping. But it causes me a lot of pain. (Not the good pain that I get in my stomach, this I know tells me it's working) But the pain I get in my back afterwards, or the next day. I can tell it's not a good pain. Also I get head aches frequently hours after doing my sit-ups. This might be because I hold my breath while I'm doing a sit-up. But when I don't hold my breath, I kind feel the need to breathe in and out a whole lot during each sit-up. Is there a technique for breathing? Maybe exhale on the way up, and inhale down? I've tried the different variations of sit-ups, like the sort of crunching, when you only go halfway down, get each elbow to touch the floor on both sides, but this almost seems too easy. I don't get nearly as big of a workout.

Any help is appreciated..


Posted by Reply
4 Posts
6/1/2010 7:38:12 AM
That really depends on what you like to
focus on, abs, legs, arms... but for an
over all exercise, for me swimming is...
I am a restless workout fanatic myself,
but I focus more on leg exercises...

1 Posts
1/29/2010 11:26:08 PM
Form is definitey the key. You need to make sure you keep your chin up and look up towards the ceiling. Never pull your neck with your hands, cause this will cause stress and also limit the effectiviness of your workout. I do think crunches are more effective. Simply keep your lower back on the ground and lift up only half way. With the abs its not about big movements, smaller movements help with tightness and toning. I dont really like the ab roller, I could do about a hundred of those and not really feel the same burn in my abs. I recommend plank positions. I think these are the simplest and best ab exercsises and also cause very little stress and pain in other areas. Just try 30 seconds each of side planks and regular planks and do a few sets throughout the day, you can definitely feel it.

1 Posts
7/17/2009 6:25:21 AM
I have tried the ab roller and it hurts my lower back.I want to if i am doing it wrong?

2 Posts
6/12/2009 8:50:27 PM
Like any other excerise form is the prority. When doing sit-ups I found it's near impossible to do a perfect one on my own without the help of a bar or partner. Crunches are great for doing on your own but while doing this you cannot crunch up your neck or back. Keep your back/neck perfectly straight, don't look down towards your chest but chin up toward the ceiling. Your breathing should be natural, don't hold your breath but also don't try to have a cycle...Just Breath.

Stage 1 Fit
18 Posts
6/7/2009 9:39:55 PM
1. If you want to do exercises that get your heart rate up and get abs, do cardio.
2. Crunches are harder than sit-ups and are supposed to be. I highly doubt you are using proper form if it's "too easy", especially if you think they are easier than sit-ups.
3. Your headaches can be attributed to you using bad form on your sit-ups. Cringing your neck for those 150 sit-ups could give anyone a bad headache. Your breathing would probably be secondary.

1 Posts
6/7/2009 5:28:57 PM
Sit ups like this aren't very good for you... that's why crunches became a better alternative. It adds stress to your back which you obviously can feel; and to your neck. Great alternatives that you can still feel a good workout are doing crunches on a stability ball, you get a large range of motion with the ball... also using an ab wheel. I do it for 3 minutes straight each morning and it is awesome.

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