The Complete Book of Butt and Legs

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A comprehensive follow-up to the sleeper hit The Complete Book of Abs, this book is the definitive resource fo shaping and strengthening the lower body. This book features tips and workouts from some of America's top strength and conditioning coaches and is lavishly illustrated with more than 300 action photos.

A comprehensive follow-up to the sleeper hit The Complete Book of Abs, this book is the definitive resource fo shaping and strengthening the lower body. This...

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A comprehensive follow-up to the sleeper hit The Complete Book of Abs, this book is the definitive resource fo shaping and strengthening the lower body. This book features tips and workouts from some of America's top strength and conditioning coaches and is lavishly illustrated with more than 300 action photos.

A comprehensive follow-up to the sleeper hit The Complete Book of Abs, this book is the definitive resource fo shaping and strengthening the lower body. This book features tips and workouts from some of America's top strength and conditioning coaches and is lavishly illustrated with more than 300 action photos.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780679754817
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 3/7/1995
  • Pages: 304
  • Product dimensions: 8.58 (w) x 11.01 (h) x 0.79 (d)

Meet the Author

Kurt Brungardt has been a writer and personal trainer in New York for the last eight years. He is the author of the best-selling fitness classic The Complete Book of Abs. He is also the host of one of the top-selling exercise videos, Abs of Steel for Men. He has written for and been featured in many exercise magazines and newspapers, and has appeared on numerous national talk shows. Kurt has trained a wide variety of clients ranging from athletes, actors, and models to businessmen and -women and senior citizens. He is a member of Strength Advantage, Inc. His body appears on the cover of this book and on the cover of The Complete Book of Abs.

Mike Brungardt is on the board of directors of Strength Advantage, Inc. He is strength and conditioning coach for the San Antonio Spurs. As a member of Strength Advantage, he has given seminars at clinics for fitness educators in schools and health clubs throughout the country. He has worked with such professional athletes as ski racer Beth Madsen (1990 Rookie of the Year) and basketball all-star David Robinson. He specializes in the mental and motivational aspects of sports performance and is also coauthor of The Strength Kit. He has been involved in the consulting and design of a wide range of fitness facillties. Mike graduated from Central State University of Oklahoma, where he wrestled and played baseball. He has nine years of coaching experience at Northwest High School, in Grand Island, Nebraska, one of the most successful athletic programs in the state of Nebraska during the eighties.

Brett Brungardt, a former strength and conditioning coach at the University of Houston and at the University ofWyoming, is on the board of directors of Strength Advantage, Inc., a fitness consultation firm that advises professiorial and college athletes, coaches, and corporations in desiginrig fitness programs and facilities. Brett is the coauthor of  The Strength Kit, a manual for planning strength and conditioning programs for all levels: scholastic, collegiate, and professional.

He is the autbor of numerous publications in the area of fitness. He has an M.Ed. in exercise science from the University of Houston and is a certified strength and conditioning specialist with the National Strength and Conditioning Association.

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Read an Excerpt


To a large extent, the problems of exercise order are already worked out for you in the routines in part four. But as you progress, you will reach a stage when you must decide what variations you need in order to get peak results. You will have to determine your own genetic strengths and weaknesses, how you want to look, and then will have to choose the exercises that will accomplish this fine-tuning. As with everything else in life, at some point you will be left alone to face the truth about your butt and legs. But have no fear, you won't fall into the butt abyss. Chapter 26, "Creating Your Own," will guide you safely through this existential experience!


It is always important to warm up your body before exercising. This prepares your body for action in two main ways:

1. Warming up increases muscle blood flow and increases general muscle metabolism. This makes the muscles perform more efficiently.

2. Warming up allows the muscles to contract with more force and with greater speed due to an increase in muscle temperature. If the muscles are warm, contraction will be optimal. This reduces the chances of injury and positively affects performance.

When a warm-up for strength training is undertaken it should proceed from general to specific. For a specific warm-up routine, refer to pages 99-102.


As in all exercise, proper breathing is essential. The breathing technique to use for resistance training is as follows:

1. Inhale before the start of the negative contraction, when you are moving against the least resistance.

2. Exhale during the lasttwo-thirds of the positive contraction.

For example, when performing the Squat you would inhale before you lower your body and exhale as you raise back up.


Intensity is a complex subject. For our purposes, intensity means the amount of energy output it takes to complete an exercise. Intensity can be increased or decreased by choosing easier or more difficult exercises and by adding or subtracting weight. In each workout you should aim for an intensity level that will produce muscular exhaustion in the prescribed number of repetitions.


Variation is often the most neglected training principle. People get comfortable in a routine and don't want to change. We, are creatures of habit. But the body thrives on both structure and change. You will start on a routine and get hooked into the structure of it. This will be a growth period. You will see gains in one or more of the following areas: strength, endurance, and/or body appearance. But after a period of time, your body will adapt to this routine and plateau. This means it's time for a change. The body wants something new. It needs a new routine for challenge, adaptation, and growth.

Variation also removes the boredom and monotony in training. And hitting the muscles from a variety of' angles gives better overall development. The routines in Part 4 have variety built into them and you can use them as a model when you are ready to create your own routine.


A repetition is the completion of an entire movement of an exercise. If an athlete performs ten squats, he or she has completed ten repetitions. Repetitions are commonly referred to as reps.


A set is a series of consecutive repetitions. if You perform ten repetitions of Leg Curls, then rest, and [hen perform another ten repetitions, you have performed two sets of ten repetitions (2 x 10).


The number of repetitions and sets you do depends on your fitness level and your goals. There are no hard and-fast rules. Professional bodybuilders and top athletes get results using a wide variety of routines, differing numbers of sets, reps, and exercises. Train as hard and as frequently as you can without overtraining.

Chapter 26, "Creating Your Own," will give you intelligent guidelines for achieving these goals and for meeting your individual needs.

Overtraining: As mentioned, overtraining simply means doing too much and not giving yourself enough rest. It means you have worked the muscle too often and too intensely without giving it enough time to repair itself'. It is the same as being overworked at the office. You become less efficient and start to burn out. Sometimes less is more. It is easy to push yourself too hard, to become critical, always wanting more and more. Training shouldn't become an unhealthy obsession. Remember, the purpose of exercise is to improve the quality of your life (mentally and physically), not just your physical appearance. Be patient, train wisely and enjoy every repetition. Get into the process, not just the results.


The most important element in training Is not quantity but quality. Don't sacrifice technique for more, weight. Concentrate on quality and technique; keep your technique strict and go through [he prescribed range of motion on each repetition. Feel the contraction of each rep, keeping constant tension on the muscles throughout[ [he movement. Indulge in each and every repetition.


The purpose of a rest period between sets is to recover for the next set. In general, you should keep your rest time as short as possible. But again, this depends on your goals and your fitness level. Beginners need more rest time. High-intensity training generally requires more rest time.


An important aspect of working out is getting in [ouch with your body. Part of this journey is ]earning to distinguish between "good" pain and "bad'" pain; so be smart and listen to your body.

Good pain is the feeling of being pumped, of having the muscle fill with blood. And yes, even that burning sensation that comes from lactic acid buildup is a good pain. This signals fatigue in the muscle or muscles you are working, which is the goal of exercise. These are feelings you will learn to thrive on and may even come to regard as pleasurable.

Bad pain is a warning sign. It means you've injured yourself. When you feel had pain, stop immediately. if you have any doubts, it's better to play it safe and stop the workout. Don't risk injury. If you have lower back problems, this is something you must be very careful about. Be aware of your lower back at all times. Warning signs are sharp pains, spasms. and periphery pain that moves into your legs, arms, feet, and hands. Don't push yourself through bad pain. Rather, take time off, see a doctor if the pain persists, or switch to exercises that won't cause such problems. See Chapter 6 for more about the lower back and preventing injury.


Muscle soreness is common after a workout. Don't worry if you're a little sore (good pain). Soreness may he caused by microscopic tears in muscle tissue. These need
recuperation time and proper nutrition for repair. If you are too sore to train during your next session, you have overdone it. Most of the time it is good to train lightly through soreness, as increased Hood flow will help the area. Train hard and train smart. Exercise is for a lifetime.


Brungardt, Brett. "Spring and Summer Four Week
Mini Cycles." National Strength & Conditioning
Association Journal, vol. 7, no. 5 (December/January 1986), 34-35.

O'Bryant, Harold, and Mike Stone. Weight Training: A Scientific Approach. 1st ed. Minneapolis: Burgess Publishing Co., 1984.

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