Fitness Posts

Turn it up: Billboard, Spotify create mother of all workout playlists


Anyone who’s ever been to boot camp knows the power of music when it comes to amping up exercise and boosting motivation.

But you can only listen to variations of “C-130 rolling down the strip” so many times.

That’s why the always musically-minded folks at Billboard teamed up with Spotify to ping more than 1.5 billion playlists built by 40 million users to create the mother of all sweat-soaking song compilations, a Top 25 of all-time workout greats.

“The results are an accurate cross-section of the music that may come to mind when you think of hitting it hard – ” ‘Let the Bodies Hit the Floor,’ anyone? ‘Bulls On Parade,’ of course. Metallica, naturally,” reads Billboard’s write-up of the results. “But also some less predictable choices from the data pool: Dropkick Murphys’ ‘I’m Shipping Up to Boston,’ made famous by the soundtrack to Martin Scorsese’s ‘The Departed,’ as well as Kanye’s mega-politik ‘Black Skinhead.’ Ok, maybe ‘Black Skinhead’ makes sense, considering it starts off with the sound of someone obviously straining on a stairmaster.”

Military cities rank near the top of American College of Sports Medicine’s American Fitness Index

Military cities rank near the top of American College of Sports Medicine’s American Fitness Index

Big military towns are among some of the fittest in U.S., according to a new report from the workout wonks at the American College of Sports Medicine.

In the organization’s seventh annual American Fitness Index, which ranks the 50 biggest cities in the country according to fitness, San Diego, Seattle and the Washington, D.C., metro area earned spots in the top 10 list.

As a kind of annual checkup, experts gather data on everything from the number, size and use of parks, gyms and other sports and recreational opportunities to levels of smoking, disease and pollution to create an overall score on a scale of 1 to 100 for each city.

A sandbag strength program from Military Muscle’s Bob Thomas


Our Military Muscle columnist got this letter from a fan. Check out his reply:

Q. Do you mind designing a sandbag workout and a strength program for myself? I want to work on my explosion since the upcoming CFT season is soon upon us.  Thank you and have a good afternoon.

A. Gunny:

As a minimum the sandbag should be 20 pounds, and you can go up from there. Once you start the workout, you never put the bag down. You can do each exercise explosively.

Have a Bag

Warm-up: 10 minutes

1.  Heavy bag get-up (shown above): 10 minutes

Put the bag over your shoulder. From a standing position, go to the floor, lying on your back so that both shoulders touch the floor. Immediately return to the original standing position. Keep going up and down without rest for the full 10 minutes. At five minutes, switch the sandbag to the opposite shoulder. There are no set rules on how to get up and down, just that “up” is fully standing and “down” is on your back with both shoulders on the floor. The easiest way is always to use the side of the body without the bag to get up and down.

Military Muscle: All you need is an Olympic bar and a single plate

122811od_BobThomasNumerous fitness institutions espouse the virtues of minimalism, with CrossFit being one of the more famous examples. I also believe in the mantra of “less is more.” Below are three exercises you can do with only an Olympic bar and a weight plate. Choose the plate that best suits your ability (10 pounds and 25 pounds are good starting points). These exercises engage multiple muscle chains. All three are done with the plate and bar attached. You can create many more exercises with a bar and a single plate. Just use your imagination.

Registration for the Marine Corps Marathon 10K and Quantico Tri opens today


Registration  for the Marine Corps Marathon 10K and Quantico Tri will open at noon today.

The popular MCM10K will start on the National Mall and finish at the Marine Corps War Memorial in Rosslyn, Va. The 10K will run Oct. 26, the same day as the Marine Corps Marathon.

Registration will be $50 and gets you a technical participant shirt and a finisher medal.

Click here to register or for more information.

The sprint-distance triathlon, now in its second year, will take place Aug. 24 aboard Marine Corps Base Quantico. Officials have increased the field to 750.

The $95 registration fee also gets you a technical shirt, event towel, finisher coin and  free pasta dinner.

Click here to register or for more information.