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65 responses

  1. Ivan
    September 27, 2010

    Yes, we bulgarians know a thing or two about streght… one of my students, here in Spain was completely convinced that I am insane, loading the weights for him.
    But there is one thing I keep repeating:
    Loose all the respect about the weight! Do NOT think how heavy it is! Just lift it!

  2. Alex Allmert – Hardcore Natural Bodybuilding Tips
    September 27, 2010

    Holy crap, now this I like.

    The elevated pushups are a great display of shoulder and core strength, a more advanced version of it would be one without leaning against a wall, I hear it takes a few years of consistently doing handstand pushups to eventually not have to rely on the wall.

    The elevated renegade rows are a new exercise to me, never seen anything like it.

    I like the fact that most of the exercises don’t need any equipment, not all of us can afford a gym.

    keep up the good work Rusty!

    -Alex Allmert

  3. Clint @ Crude Fitness
    September 27, 2010

    Lots of love for Yavor on here I see.
    Nice work matey!

    Oh, and good post again Rusty…. who’s blog am I on again? :)

  4. Kelly-Fitness Overhaul
    September 27, 2010

    Yavor is one of the true go to guys when it comes to strength training. He always comes up with some off the wall exercise that I’ve never seen before on his blog. I have been checking his blog out regularly for the last nine months and I never get tired of it! He always has some nuggets of information that you can’t get anywhere else. I’m glad that someone as respected as you are, Rusty, is giving him some props.

    I always look forward to seeing what Yavor is going to come up with next. The people that haven’t visited his blog yet, don’t know what they are missing. I have been training for over 27 years and I still learn a lot from him and especially his videos.

    Kelly

  5. Darren@moreprimetime.com
    September 27, 2010

    I’m a big Yavor fan.

    His posts are always bold and adventurous – exercises and routines you likely have never seen before.

    I also really appreciate his progressive approach so that even beginners can get started moving towards his level of mastery.

    Darren@moreprimetime.com

  6. Aaron
    September 27, 2010

    This was a pretty impresive post. A lot of their stuff is great material as I love adnvanced bodyweight movements because they’re sooo beast!!! You should check out Calisthenics Kingz. This guy is insanely impressive at what he does.

  7. Alejandro “The Fittest Vegan”
    September 27, 2010

    Nice!!! I’m jealous of that gym, wish we had it here in Canada. I like that pull up, definitely a big builder.

  8. Mike – Fitness Contrarian
    September 27, 2010

    Hey Rusty,

    Yavor is a nice guy who always publishes quality fitness information. He has a great site with a lot of interesting information.

    Everyone should checkout the bodyweight exercise category on his site for all the innovative videos.

    Great Post.

    Best – Mike

  9. Bryan
    September 27, 2010

    Wow,

    Love the video, as so much more to the post!

    Blows my mind how much core strength that you can build up with just a few exercises.

  10. Darrin – Lean, Mean, Virile Machine
    September 27, 2010

    Yavor’s one guy with a kick-ass website who happens to be super down-to-earth as well. I’ve learned a lot from his site and when he stops by my blog to give his 2 cents. He really has videos for EVERYTHING and I encourage everyone to check out his infamous black and white checkerboard gym!

  11. Ian @ HomeWorkoutBlog
    September 27, 2010

    Yavor is the man.

    Check out his site, follow along with the videos, and you can’t help but get stronger with minimal equipment.

    Nice work Yavor!

    -Ian

  12. Chris – ZTF
    September 28, 2010

    Great guest post, never really checked out Yavor’s site. Full of great stuff, Found this article on lower abs very interesting http://thurly.net/03ft

    Eastern europeans know there stuff with strength training basics. I have a russian friend who came from a gymnastics background and all the this stuff is like child’s play to him. Good advice in this post, still trying for my first muscle up, think I need a bit more general strength.

  13. Yavor :: Relative Strength Advantage
    September 28, 2010

    Hey guys, fantastic comments! I’ll get back to them when I have a minute.

    I’d like to thank Rusty for letting me write for fitness black book as well as my friend and mentor Milko Georgiev (the bad ass guy doing the Dragon Flag, who also trained Mario and Nino in the vids above), who is the owner of the gym, for teaching me this stuff!

    Yavor

  14. Anita
    September 28, 2010

    Rusty – you’ve just given me a new target to achieve :) I just have to work my way up to the Dragon Flag. I know it will take a while – a long while… But I am astonished at the strength of that exercise so I have to do it.

    BTW – I’m Bulgarian and I can totally vouch for the beauty of Bulgarian beaches. The mountains are incredible too.

  15. Sue
    September 28, 2010

    Great post – glad to be introduced to a great site. Yavor gives excellent advice. I’ve got some catch up reading to do now.

  16. Hazman @ CrazyFitnessGuide
    September 28, 2010

    This is a very good post, and Its amazing how the best gym is in bulgaria…but also you dont really need a gym to get a body, just hard work, a good ethic, plenty of natural exercise, and bodyweight, and your set to go!

  17. Fitness Training Programs
    September 28, 2010

    These are some great exercises especially for the core. I noticed that these are more body weight specific which helps you develop a strong lean look versus that steroid hulk type magazine look. Keep the good stuff coming!

  18. How To Lose Weight- Mikey
    September 28, 2010

    Rusty,

    this was an awesome post. I’ve done headstand pushups before and used to be able to do 10, but haven’t done them forever. Thanks for the reminder.

    And the full contact twist is definitely something I have to give a few months trial in.

    these all look like great exercises that would be fun to do with an outdoor gym on the beach or something. I’ll have to test that theory in Spain next year. you coming? haha.

  19. Cubicle Warrior
    September 29, 2010

    Hey man thanks for this post! It’s nice to see how people workout in other parts of the world.

    I struggled with doing 1 pull up before but after doing statics and a variation of the sternum pull up (where in i literally jump to get some momentum going) i could do 10 now in a set with no problem.

    What I haven’t done is the muscle up. My door pull up bar doesn’t allow me to do so. :)

    Thanks again! Really inspired to try the handstand push up. I might be doing statics with that as well

  20. Lauren Snyder
    September 29, 2010

    Hi Rusty,

    Thanks for this awesome post :) I’ll definitely check out Yavor’s blog too. These exercises look great…I’ve got to try the ones that are new to me!

    Thanks agian!
    Lauren

  21. Mark
    September 29, 2010

    Man I love your site Rusty – and the proof is in body composition changes I’ve made. Thank you for your work!

    I have hit a plateau in increasing the amount of weight I lift at the gym so this post came at the right time. I have been at it for over 3 months now and think I will switch to body weight exercises for a while.

    I tried the handstand pushups, thought I was strong in the shoulders but could only do a quarter of one before having to fall off the wall. Humbling indeed!

    Quick question, could you tell me the recipe you used when you lived cheap off of chicken salad? I’m trying to get ripped and save money for an extended island hopping trip – and would prefer something healthier than ramen every night

    Thanks

  22. Yavor :: Relative Strength Advantage
    September 29, 2010

    Chris,

    I think the fitness knowledge goes in circles. Today I learned there were apparently “Bulgarian dips” – this is the name the gymnastic coach Christopher Sommer calls them. He learned them from a Bulgarian gymnast and I learned them from him…

    Martin,

    the past dominance was drugs (as in almost any other sport… people need to come clean!) + work, work, work… Big fan and long time reader of your blog as you know…

    Ryan,

    yeah, after quite a few years in gyms, I get excited when I find new ways to train!

    Bryan,

    thanks for being a reader. I really do try to explain as best as I can.

    Eric,

    I’ve seen this vid of Fedor. Old school, Rocky 4 type of workout. Awesome!

    Pete,

    kettlebells are a great tool to add variety, aren’t they? One of my favorite exercises is the swing.

    David,

    Lol! I am around 175lbs now at 5’11’’. It’s great to be light and athletic – and not look like a bouncer in street clothes.

    Tom,

    yeah variation is needed. I’ve been getting more and more into this gymnastic type training lately…

    Craig,

    no doubt man! Hope to get another cool article from Hollywood soon… I know you’re busy but still!

    Alykhan,

    Glad you liked those exercises!

    Henrik,

    Yeah these guys are strong. Sometimes I wonder how I got there lol!

    Raymond,

    actually it is a great place to drink and party lol! I have to learn about this technique from you. I just recently started reading about the fascia cause of a back injury I got this summer…

    John,

    the elevated renegade rows are difficult… but if a girl can do them…

    Kev,

    these techniques go full circles – to the US and back. I learned a ton from guys in America as well as Bulgaria.

    Mike,

    This is a great quote from you: “Any tough movement done correctly in good form with intensity is great for the body.” Completely agree.

    Katie,

    love to have you as a reader. Wish you success on your bikini bod goal for summer 2011!

    Jason,

    Hey! The CrossFit guys don’t own body weight training lol!

    LD,

    Haha you got me man!

    Adria,

    Awesome. You should link your site so we can check it out!

    David,

    gymnastic training is awesome. Too bad they don’t present their info in a user friendly manner. We can fix this!

    Thomas,

    yeah, I try to only talk about stuff I’ve done. Though I admit the one arm evil wheel… I don’t dare lol!

    Jordan,

    Jordan, you’ve done the difficult part. Training is easy when you are a normal weight!

    Frank,

    I guess it’s not super expensive. The bad news – investors are over developing these areas in a bad way with too many hotels…

    Louis,

    Awesome. I’m a big, big fan (obviously!) of body weight stuff too.

    Michael,

    We are the one, aren’t we lol! Too funny man…

    Steve,

    you can do it, if I can! I failed my freshman pullup test in highschool. 0 pullups. Now I’ve done as many as 21… and 3 muscle-ups.

    Bova,

    speaking of the Rocky training video…

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W8xHjC27YvM

    A great Guitar Cover Version!

    Phew, ran out of time – will have to come back!

    Yavor

  23. Crystal
    September 29, 2010

    Great post! Can’t wait to try those handstand pushups!

  24. Semper Phi
    October 1, 2010

    Yavor, great job. I’m from that part of the world myself. Gavarish pa rooskie?

    Rusty, I’ve recently incorporated your tip of doing interval training followed by steady cardio( 1 minute on the treadmill @ 11mph, then 2 @ 6, doing it 7 times, working my way up to 10, then following it by 15-25 minutes of steady cardio, usually 8 mph on the treadmill or 10-11ish on the elliptical). You were right, I am seeing results. However, I now officially hate you(not really). This sucks. I’ve been doing this 3-4 times weekly on my workout days and will soon incorporate 5 mile jogs on my days out of the gym. I am less than pleased with myself for ever allowing myself to get as out of shape as I had, so I’m trying to dial in the bodyfat% as quick as I can so that then I can go have fun putting some mass and strength on. Anyhoo…. peace.

  25. Yavor
    October 2, 2010

    Kyle,

    yep, the guy doing the evil wheel has quite some strength – from martial arts training coupled with strength training (renegade rows, full contact twist, etc…)

    Chris,

    yes, it is the one arm evil wheel. But the girl with the elevated renegades is very strong too.

    Drew,

    Ha! Great that you are finding this stuff useful man.

    Dave,

    Great to see you here. Your site is growing and improving by the minute!

    Rafi,

    Glad you got real life under control and are able to spend time blogging again!

    Ryan F,

    Speaking of bodyweight workouts, I used to think that the way to go was either increase reps or add weight. However, I am reconsidering this as I learn more abut gymnastics. It’s actually LEVERAGE that’s the key – so we need to find to change the leverage of the exercise so it becomes more difficult

    Bryan,

    yeah those guys are strong. Especially the girl for her size (she’s really slim) and gender.

    Josh,

    WSB is a great place to learn about absolute strength and powerlifting. Good call!

    Jordan,

    good job man. If you stick with it and increase your numbers, the HSPU will give you very nice shoulders…

    Ivan,

    Just lift it – great slogan. Wish I understood more Spanish so I can learn from you and your blog.

    Alex,

    I don’t think it is years… After getting good at the HSPU against a wall, it would probably take another few months to get a freestanding one. Reason being – some more basic strength is needed plus a sense of balance.

    Btw – there are a TON of exercises you can do at home. If you got access to a playground like the one I train at in front of my building – it’s even better…

    Clint,

    Thanks man – really appreciated!

    Kelly,

    Glad to have you as a reader and even more glad to learn from you (not only training wise!).

    Darren,

    Bold and adventurous! I like this. I’ve got a bold and adventurous video shoot planned for tomorrow!

    Aaron,

    Calisthenics Kingz are a great bunch of friends and body weight training enthusiasts. As are all the other guys – from the US, Australia, Europe, etc!

    Alejandro,

    It really is a nice place!

    Mike,

    Thanks for showcasing the body weight exercise category. It will grow even more!

    Bryan,

    This is scratching the surface. I’m learning about gymnastics now – now that’s bad ass!

    Darrin,

    Thanks man! Big fan of your blog as you know!

    Ian,

    That’s right! I only train with body weight, a set of dumbbells and the playground equipment… Ok the playground equipment cannot go under the “only” category lol!

    Chris,

    I bet your Russian friend is freaky strong. Wish I trained in gymnastics as a kid… But it’s never to late…

    Anita,

    Another fellow Bulgarian :) Good luck on the Dragon Flag!

    Sue,

    My pleasure!

    Hazman,

    You don’t really need a gym – you need the information on how to train… Good call!

    FTP,

    Exactly – with body weight you cannot gain excessive bulk or become fat AND strong.

    Mike,

    10 HSPU is not bad… not bad at all. Give the Full contact twist a shot – your core will thank you. Or not!

    CW,

    I tried statics with the HSPU but had poor results. What gave results was rotating rep ranges and range of motion. So I’d do very high reps with very little range of motion and gradually lower the reps and increase the range…

    Lauren,

    Give them a try. Glad you liked the article!

    Mark,

    if you are at a natural body weight right now, there’s no reason why you won’t master the HSPU really soon! Good luck!

    Crystal,

    One of my favorite exercises – you’ll love the handstand pushups!

    Semper Phi ,

    Gavaryu – tolka ne mnoga lol! I used to go to a Russian-language kindergarten and took a year of Russian in school. Gotta brush up on it though.

    Cheers guys – really enjoyed guest posting for Fitness Black Book!

    Yavor

  26. Gary – Exercise Routines
    April 9, 2011

    The problem is getting in reasonable shape before you show your face at the gym.

  27. Andreas
    June 27, 2011

    Diificult exercises, only for advanced people !

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  28. spy blackberry phone
    October 26, 2011

    It is wonderful to Read this kind of information i am going to bookmark this for future reference its good to visit your blog i will come back to read updates from you

  29. Spartan Ren
    January 12, 2012

    I will be visiting his gym as I’m off to Bulgaria for a couple of days business trip next week. Thanks for the inspiration Rusty!

    Never stop, Never pause…

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