March 2005
Andy and Jamie Welcome to this installment of Balazs Boxing's newsletter. The past few months have been full of boxing in the news with the success of the film Million Dollar Baby and the debut of The Contender on television. Andy helps us further our understanding of the terms used in boxing. And since spring is coming fast we've included another fitness drill to help whip our abs into shape! Andy and Jamie also offer a few suggestions on weight training. Lastly, in the "Ask the Trainer" section, the team gives advice on burning fat and eating well! Stay focused on your fitness goals and get ready for the nice weather ahead!

The Balazs Team


Boxing Drill #15: Understanding Boxing Terminology - Part 2
Boxing Terminology: Part 2

Weather you're a fitness boxer or getting ready to step in the ring with Bernard Hopkins, here are some tips for sparring or working the Heavy Bag.

Regardless of a boxer's individual style, balanced movement is indispensable.
Because it is so essential in the ring, it's important that movement be learned well in the gym. Fast legs and the foot movement they generate are the foundation for everything.

Snap the Jab
As the most frequently thrown punch, the main purpose of the jab is to keep your opponent off guard and at a safe distance. It sets up more powerful shots, keeps your opponent off balance and can be used to dictate the pace of the fight.

Each punch thrown should be like a piston. Execute the delivery and retraction of the arm smoothly, allowing the body to remain balanced.

Proper Range
Range is the amount of distance between you and your opponent. The use of proper range will allow you to hit your opponent while also giving you the time to maneuver defensively.

With practice, locating your most efficient distance will become more natural, as you constantly adjust to your opponent's movement and control the distance between you. Range can be used to help dictate the pace and direction of a match.

Head Movement
Constant head movement can throw your opponent's rhythm off. Head movement allows you to slip your opponent's punches, leaving your hands free to counter punch.

Your hands should always be up and in the protective position when moving your head. Don't make the mistake of dropping your hands when moving your head.

When working the heavy bag or target mitts keep moving your head, while throwing your punches.

Boxing Drill #16: Medicine Ball Drills - Advanced Drills
Medicine Ball Drills

The greatest advantage of using the medicine ball is that it trains the body core very effectively. Here are three advanced medicine ball drills.

Lying on your back with the legs extended and the medicine ball held overhead, contract the abdominal muscles and raise the arms, body and legs simultaneously in smooth motion, attaining a v-position. Return to the lying position by lowering the legs and body together in a controlled manner. Always maintain proper body alignment, leg extension and arms overhead.

Oblique Pull-Overs
Lying on your back hold the ball off to one side over the shoulder. Lift the ball and
curl towards the opposite knee. Slowly return to the ground and then repeat. This exercise really challenges the oblique muscles. Switch the ball to the opposite shoulder to work the other side. Perform several sets on each side for maximum results.

Medicine Ball Toss - Partner Drill:
Sit on the floor facing your partner with knees bent, and arms in front of you ready to catch a ball toss. Your partner sits approximately 3 feet away. As you catch the ball slowly lower your trunk to the floor in a controlled manner. Sit back up, tossing the ball to your partner as your trunk rises. Repeat, remembering to keep your feet on the floor, eyes on your partner and shoulders square over the hips. To make this exercise more challenging increase the distance from your partner.

Recommended medicine ball weight 6-8 pounds.

Andy and Jamie's Health and Fitness Tip: Sport Specific Weight Training
To train the muscles effectively for a specific sport, you must first determine if speed, agility, strength, endurance and or power are part of the activity. Lower weights and higher repetitions will increase speed and agility and is the best way to train for such sports as boxing and racquet sports. Golfers will want to combine lighter weights and more repetitions to maintain their flexibility for their short game, but use medium weights and fewer repetitions when working on their power for their drives. Baseball players will also want to use a heavier weight and fewer reps to increase the power of their swing. Heavy weight lifting will build bulk and is best left for the professional weight trainer or body builder. Work the specific muscle groups that are required for the execution of the movement for the sport and imitate the movement with the assistance of light weights. Always remember to stretch the muscle after the weight workout to ensure optimum range of motion at the joints.
Ask the Trainer:
"My heart rate was just recently tested to determine my levels. I'm still not perfectly clear on the benefits of training at different levels. It is my understanding that I should train UNDER my aerobic threshold if I want to burn FAT. If I train ABOVE my aerobic threshold, less fat will be burned off because I will be burning more glucose and glycogen. My concern is that if my heart rate is higher, I will obviously be burning more calories. The simple fact is that the more calories I burn, the more weight I will lose. Therefore, what would you recommend to a person that wants to lose fat around the midsection (spare tire and gut)?"

Take a look at the training regimens of the best-conditioned athletes in the world and you will find workout routines that not only burn calories, but also build muscle and stamina. It is true that the main energy source used when training below (under) your aerobic threshold is fat. Exercising at this level is very efficient and a safe way to maintain an activity. But to burn excess calories you do not necessarily want to be "efficient" and therefore will need to / want to work at a level higher than your aerobic threshold. It is, however, difficult to maintain physical aerobic activity above your aerobic threshold for any length of time because the energy sources- adenosine triphosphate and creatine phosphate- are only available in limited amounts. Glucose and glycogen stores are also available in limited supplies and are used as an energy source in both higher and lower activity levels.
Interval workouts are a great way of using all sources of energy, providing for a more intense workout with breaks to recover. Hitting the heavy bag for two to three minute rounds will make demands on your anaerobic system. Jump rope for 10 to 20 minutes and you will be working the aerobic system. Following a boxer's workout and eating nutritionally will help you to lose that spare tire.

Speaking of eating nutritionally...

"My question is geared towards proper nutrition. I drink plenty of water during the day and during my workouts, but what exactly should I be eating prior to, and after a workout, that will help me get the most from my workouts?"

Before a workout, eat foods that will provide a steady source of energy. Foods such as brown rice, beans, fresh fruit and berries, and fruit smoothies made from yogurt and fruit provide a good source of carbohydrates. Also eat some foods high in proteins, such as whole eggs, lean beef, fish, and unprocessed soy. Some fats, such as extra virgin olive oil, avocado and flaxseed oils; nuts specifically almonds and walnuts; energy bars, and tuna or egg salad are a good choice. Ensure that you do not eat too close to your workout. The length of time will vary according to each individual and the intensity of the workout. Leave at least one hour after eating a light meal and at least two to three hours after eating a large meal before working out.

After a workout, within 45 - 60 minutes, it is important to consume carbohydrates, (approximately 80 to 100 grams), and some protein, (20 to 30 grams). This assists in a faster recovery and then a better starting point for the next day's workout. Most health food stores carry the right blend of carbohydrates and proteins in a post workout drink.

 - Andy Dumas

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Product Recommendations:
FB6522 Rubber Medicine Ball - 6 lb.
SS1001 ATX Workout Supplements
DD0201 i-Box: Fitness Boxing Fundamentals DVD
PK0112 Balazs Hand Wraps
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