For those of you who don’t know, I’m an exercise buff. I really enjoy talking about training methodologies. I like learning about new approaches to training. I read exercise science lab reports like they’re porn.
I studied for a while to become a personal trainer but eventually disregarded it as a career because the field is just too corrupt. I’m not saying that every employee at your local gym will sabotage your health to keep you coming back to buy more and more personal training services, but I will say I met more of those types than not. Especially at the most golden gyms of them all.
I’ve given several workshops at conventions, talking about fitness (usually in a context pertaining to aspiring cosplayers). And afterwards, many people will ask for recommendations about where to start with exercise. Most people think a successful program involves a combination of jogging and bodybuilding-style weightlifting. And in my semi-professional opinion, that’s a mistake.
The simplest exercise recommendations are the best, and the most direct are the easiest to implement. So, to that end, the single best exercise tool that I would recommend is the kettlebell. They’re like cannonballs with handles. They usually run about $1.5 to $2 per pound, but they’re an excellent investment and are probably the single best fitness tool out there.
As for the single best exercise program, it likewise should be a simple one. And one that leaves no, or next-to-no, guesswork. So, my answer to ‘where should I start’ is usually something like this:
Step One: Go to DragonDoor.com and buy Enter The Kettlebell.
Step Two: Read Enter The Kettlebell from front to back.
Step Three: Begin doing the Program Minimum.
I could go on and on about why kettlebells are a supremely beneficial exercise tool, and method really, but the book will do that for me. EtK (as it’s often known) is quite simply the single best one-stop-shop exercise program there is. The programs take extremely little time and yet return great results. They are extremely safe and exceptionally easy to follow (unless the directions in the book are patently ignored). And best of all, the cost-of-equipment is comparatively nominal. EtK isn’t perfect for everybody or everything, but it’s more than adequate for anyone. And as a starting-off point in exercise, it’s the best, bar none. Specific needs and requirements and requests would warrant different answers each time, but for general purposes – and as a default answer – this is what I always return to.