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Friday, March 30, 2018

Muscle Growth with Post-Workout Nutrition

In recent years, there has been huge interest in the topic of around workout nutrition for promoting optimal gains in strength and muscle size (prior to that, most interest had to to with recovery from exhaustive endurance exercise).  And, as is so often the case, as research has developed, many ideas, some good and some bad, have developed out of that.




Early research into post-workout nutrition focused almost exclusively on endurance athletes and, really, the only issue of importance was refilling muscle glycogen and re-hydrating the athlete.  For this reason the focus was on carbohydrates and fluids with little else considered.  At some point, I recall it being the mid-90’s some early work suggested that adding protein to post-workout carbohydrates was beneficial in terms of glycogen re-synthesis and a new dietary trend started to form.

Now, it turns out to be a bit more complicated than that whether additional protein actually increases glycogen synthesis depends on a host of factors, primarily how much carbohydrate is provided.  Simply, if sufficient carbohydrate is given following training, adding protein has no further benefit in terms of promoting glycogen re-synthesis.

In situations where insufficient carbs are consumed (by choice or otherwise), extra protein helps.  Which isn’t to say that additional protein following training isn’t valuable for endurance athletes even if carbohydrate are sufficient but that’s not really the topic of today’s article.

While individuals involved in the strength sports and bodybuilding were quick to jump onto the post-workout carb/protein bandwagon, the research wasn’t really aimed at them.  As well, there has always been a bit of a disconnect in using work on endurance athletes (who may be doing hours of exhaustive work) and trying to apply it to individuals in the weight room.

Differences in volume of training, fuel use and goals make using data on one group inappropriate for application to the others.  It’s still common to see well-meaning nutritionists use the same guidelines for both strength/power athletes (including bodybuilders) and endurance athletes but that is simply silly.

In any case, work examining the impact of various combinations of post-workout nutrients in terms of promoting strength or hypertrophy would come later and, at this point, a huge amount of work has been done.  I’m not going to get into every detail (the issue is discussed in absurd detail, 35 pages worth, in The Protein Book) of post-workout nutrition and will focus the article simply on the issue of protein, carbohydrates and the combination of the two in terms of how they impact on post-workout recovery and muscle growth.

To understand what I’m going to say and why I think some current recommendations (especially the one saying that you only need protein post-workout) are not consistent with the research, I need to get into a few details regarding how training impacts on muscle growth and how nutrients impact on this.  Don’t worry about the dense text, there’s a pretty graphic below to help explain it all.  A pretty, pretty graphic.

After an intense weight lifting workout your body system is characterized by three main factors:

1. Glycogen Stores are low.

2. Protein Breakdown is increased.

3. Muscle Protein Balance is negative.

Therefore, for a rapid recovery from exercise, immediately after a workout (strength or endurance), you must:

1. Rapidly replenish the low glycogen stores in your muscles.

2. Rapidly decrease the muscle protein breakdown that occurs with exercise, especially high intensity bodybuilding training.

3. Rapidly force further increases in muscle protein synthesis in weight trainers and/or restore muscle-protein synthesis in endurance athletes.

Failure to accomplish any one of these objectives will lead to a lowered rate of recovery from your workout. And the slower the recovery process is, the less muscle growth you can stimulate!

Studies have found that delaying nutrients (protein and carbohydrate) consumption after a workout can greatly reduce the rate of glycogen restoration and protein synthesis. In fact, the rate of glycogen synthesis is reduced by 50% if nutrients are not consumed immediately after a workout. Besides, delaying post-workout nutrients absorption will negatively affect protein synthesis.

A few hours after a workout, the insulin sensitisation stimulated by intense training will be much lower: there is a two to threefold increase in insulin sensitivity immediately post-workout. After two or three hours, it is down to only 44% above baseline (Levenhagen et al. 2001). So basically, if you wait too long after your workout to consume a mix of fast absorbing proteins and high glycemic carbohydrates, the amount of muscle you will build in response to your session will be significantly decreased.

There are two key factors to rapidly increasing post-workout glycogen synthesis:

1. Adequate carbohydrate availability (to convert to muscle glycogen).

2. High insulin levels (to stimulate glycogen storage and shuttle carbohydrates into the muscle).

An ideal post-workout muscle growth stimulating formula would include fast absorbing proteins, high glycemic carbohydrates, and some additional BCAAs (which have been shown to drastically increase protein synthesis and decrease protein breakdown on their own). Certain amino acids can increase the insulin response to meals. By adding certain amino acids to the carbohydrate/protein beverage in the above study, the insulin responses were considerably higher than the carbohydrate/protein beverage alone.

In order to maximize these two key factors you need to increase the gastric emptiness rate as much as possible. The different proposed ingredients must be fast absorbing. To achieve this goal you must dilute these nutrients into a lot water quantity. Liquid nutrition is more rapidly digested and absorbed, nutrients are more rapidly delivered to the muscle.

The final piece of the post-workout puzzle is the management of protein synthesis. And although this area is a little more complex than managing protein breakdown, there are three key ingredients to increasing protein synthesis immediately after workouts:

1. A proper ratio of BCAAs.

2. High blood levels of essential amino acids.

3. High blood levels of insulin.

You must prioritize 3 main factors as soon as possible.
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Monday, March 26, 2018

Top Muscle Building Workouts

Are you an intermediate or advanced trainee looking to build muscle mass fast? If so, welcome to the program I simply call The Muscle Building Workout Routine.

The Muscle Building Workout Routine is the completely FREE weight training program that I recommend most often to people looking to build any amount of muscle mass as fast as possible.

This workout routine is designed to work for both men and women, young and old, people looking to build a significant amount of muscle and get “big” or build a small amount of muscle and just get “toned.”

Basically, if you’re past the beginner’s stage and your primary goal is building muscle or improving the way your body looks in virtually any capacity, this program is for you.





The Focus

We are going to focus on all the muscles of the body here like a true bodybuilder. If you’re going to build muscle, it should be all over! Do you want to look out of proportion with huge biceps but little arms? It is important to build muscle all over your body so that you will have a proportionate and symmetrical physique. All the best muscle building workouts contain elements which work these muscle groups. Let’s take a look at the main muscle groups we will be training.
Biceps

Triceps

Deltoids

Pectorals

Legs

Abs


These muscle groups contain smaller muscles within them which make up the group, and the best muscle building workouts we list below on this page will target all of them in accordance with your experience. But first, before getting into the best muscle building workouts, we will go into how to build muscle.

How To Build Muscle

There are four main contributing factors concerning how to build muscle. When following best muscle building workouts, it is important to stick to a strict regime. In order to pack on the pounds of lean muscle mass, you must do the following.
Eat – Train – Drink – Sleep

Eat

Your muscles need fuel to burn for your workouts, and they get this fuel from your diet. Nutrition is everything when you’re trying to pack on pounds of lean muscle. You need to be consuming a certain amount of calories per day depending on your body weight and goals, and your diet should consist of sources of protein such as lean meats, fish, nuts, and legumes. Wholegrain foods for fiber such as wholegrain bread, brown rice, cereals, and muesli. Also green vegetables for vitamins. All of these components make up a good bodybuilding diet.

Train

This is where you will perform your bodybuilding workouts to push your muscles into a state of hypertrophy. Muscle hypertrophy is when there is an increase in the size of skeletal muscle through an increase in the size of its component cells. When you lift heavy weights, you are slightly tearing your muscles so they can make room to expand when they repair themselves.

The ideal number of reps per set for hypertrophy is 6-12 reps. Any less is to train for strength and any more is for muscular endurance and toning. Training should be done in a structure of intensity and frequency. This will depend on your level of weight lifting experience and your health among more factors.

Drink

No, we don’t mean for you to go and chug gallons of beer or a few quarts of your favourite spirit. You need to consume the elixir of life. Water. Water keeps you hydrated and also your muscles. It will fill into your muscles and make them fuller and improve your circulation. It is important to consume enough water every day depending on your thirst and bodyweight. Do not over consume as there are health problems that can arise from this.

Sleep

Your body is like a factory. Constantly in operation with something functioning. When you sleep, your body repairs itself from those little muscle tears you got when you were performing your bodybuilding workouts. It is important to get at least 7 hours of sleep per night in order for your body to recharge and repair itself.


There is a simple principle that is applied if you want to know how to build muscle fast. The heavier the weights you lift, the bigger your muscles can get.
Heavy Weights = Bigger Muscles

You can’t just go and pick up the biggest dumbbell you can find though and start curling it to build some huge peaks. You need to gradually let your body develop the ability to lift heavier weights by mastering the lower weight levels with perfect technique. Once you reach a plateau where you can perform your desired sets without getting fatigue or failure in the muscular hypertrophy range, you will need to increase the weight in order to increase your muscle mass. This is known as progressive overload, which is a component of all the best muscle building workouts and was popular with old school bodybuilding.

Let’s take a look two more important factors that will determine your muscle growth.

Recovery

It is very important to allow an ample amount of recovery time between your muscle building workouts for your muscles to heal. This will allow growth and prevent injury. The time between your bodybuilding workouts, which is known as resting, will depend again on your body and experience in lifting weights.

If you are new to lifting weights, your muscles will be very sore for sometimes up to 5-days. This is because they aren’t used to being stimulated by these functions that you sometimes have never performed before. When you are new to working out, it is important to let your body heal completely from these new functions.

Frequency

If you are a beginner, your training frequency will be low at this point, most likely once or sometimes twice a week. The more often you lift weights, the more your body will adapt to this stimulation and start to recover faster, allowing you to work out more often with greater intensity. Especially if you will be performing some of the best muscle building workouts. As you progress, you will be training three to six times a week depending on your schedule and body.

Best Muscle Building Workouts

Here we will list the best muscle building workouts for you depending on your level of fitness. Remember to take into consideration everything we have mentioned above including proper nutrition and to perform the exercises with proper technique to avoid injury and stimulate growth. This article is focusing on the best bodybuilding workouts for beginners, if you feel as though you are past this level, scroll to the bottom of this page to the intermediate section where you will find a link to the best body building workouts for intermediates.

Beginner

So you are new to working out and you want to build some nice muscles. At this stage, your exercises are going to start off small for the first few weeks so your body can get used to this new form of stimulation. This method is part of the best muscle building workouts that you can follow.

The best way to build muscle for a beginner is by performing compound exercises. This means full body workouts to stimulate symmetrical growth all over and to build mass all at once until your muscles plateau and your workouts need to become more isolated. Full body workouts are one of the best muscle building workouts. These muscle building workouts will be compound exercises with a separate day for legs to ensure that fatigue is lower.

First off, we are going to presume that you want to get into body building or muscle building here and will start the training from a true beginners level and progress into more advanced workouts. Here are some of the best muscle building workouts.


Workout 1 – Week 1

Chest

Bench Press – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Legs

Leg Press – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Back

Wide-Grip Pull-ups – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Abs

Crunches – 3 Sets of 12-15 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

There are no isolated bicep exercises here as the bench press and the pull ups use the biceps to perform these movements. While they are not isolated bicep exercises, they do get worked and may be sore and get fatigued from performing this workout so we will leave it out of this one to be cautious.

Workout 2 – Week 2

Shoulders

Military Press – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Triceps

Rope Pushdowns – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Biceps

Concentration Curls – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Abs

Sit Ups – 3 Sets of 10 – 15 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Rest for one day and then perform workout 3.

Workout 3 – Week 2

Legs

Leg Extensions      – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.
Hamstring Curls   – 2 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.
Calf Raises             – 2 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

We are going to perform weeks 1 and 2 on an alternating cycle for a month to get your body used to building muscle. So this will be for 6 weeks in total before moving onto week 7.

Make sure you have fully recovered from you upper and lower body workouts before you perform workout 4.

Workout 4 – Week 7

Chest

Pectoral Flys – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Legs

Leg Press – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.
Calf Raises – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Back

Seated Rows – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Abs

Crunches – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Rest for two days or until your biceps are not sore after 48hrs are up before you perform workout 5.

Workout 5 – Week 7

Shoulders

Front Raise – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Side Lateral Raise – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Triceps

Overhead Extensions – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Biceps

EZ Bar Curls – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Let your body fully recover and then perform workout 6.

Workout 6 – Week 8

Chest

Bench Press – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Legs

Leg Press – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Calf Raises – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Back

Wide-Grip Pull-ups – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Abs

Crunches – 3 Sets of 12-15 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Workout 6.2 – Week 8

Shoulders

Military Press – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.
Seated Lateral Raises – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Triceps

Rope Pushdowns – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.
Overhead Extensions – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Biceps

Concentration Curls – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.
Standing Cable Curls – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Workout 7 – Week 9

By now, you should have had a little growth and get an idea of how your body responds and heals from your muscle building workouts. You may keep repeating these previous workouts again for another four weeks or more to get your body ready for the next stage. If not, we are going to add more exercises and sets to your muscle building workouts for you to use when your body is more accustomed to lifting weights. The best muscle building workouts allow room for this type of growth.

You may also be ready to start lifting heavier weights for some exercises than you could before. If you can and are ready, this will create progressive overload that we mentioned before, and help tremendously with your muscle building workouts and growth.

Chest

Decline Bench Press – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.
Pectoral Flys – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Shoulders

Military Press – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.
Dumbbell Read Deltoid Raise – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Triceps

Rope Pushdowns – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.
Overhead Extensions – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.



Back

Deadlift – 3 Sets of 8 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.
One Arm Dumbbell Row – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Biceps

Concentration Curls – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.
EZ Bar Curls – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Workout 8.2 – Week 10

Legs

Squats – 3 Sets of 10 – 12 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.
Leg Raise – 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.
Calf Raise- 3 Sets of 8 – 10 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

Abs

Sit Ups – 3 Sets of 12 – 15 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.
V-Snaps – 3 Sets of 12 – 15 reps with 2 minutes rest in between sets.

At this stage, we are going to repeat workouts 7 and 8 on an alternating weekly cycle. You will be doing muscle building workout 7 one week, and then workout 8 the next. By alternating these workouts, you are confusing your muscles by changing the exercises every week. This will force growth because your muscles become accustomed to your exercises and after a following the exact same routine for a while, it can eventually become counter-productive, and you will not gain. The best muscle building workouts contain muscle confusion.
You can repeat workouts 7 and 8 on an alternating weekly cycle until you reach a point where you recover fast enough to be able to perform workouts 7 and 7.2 twice per week and workouts 8 and 8.2 twice per alternating week. It is important that you do not try to do this until you are absolutely sure that your body is ready to handle four training sessions a week, as you can severely injure yourself.

Intermediate Level

After you have been performing workouts 7 and 8 twice per week on an alternating cycle for at least 6 months while increasing the weight wherever you can, your workouts will become easier. This is because you are starting to plateau as a beginner and are ready to progress to the intermediate stage. You should have built some solid muscle mass now and have been bodybuilding for at least a year while following the best muscle building workouts. You are accustomed to these exercises and alternations and will still be gaining but will be needing more exercises per muscle group in order to keep building muscle.
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Wednesday, March 21, 2018

top six exercises to boost bicep mass

If there’s one thing that draws people to weightlifting and maybe even bodybuilding as a whole – it’s getting bigger muscles to show off. Whether it’s for show purposes or practical use, many who work towards this end often gauge effectiveness and success on the sheer size, shape and ripped physique they can create.





Biceps are one of the top muscles that people want to have bulging and flexing at all times. It’s one of the main muscles that people can always see – so when you catch someone checking them out, you can wink and give a little nod of satisfaction.

To help you get those massive biceps that you crave or maybe just to help you make them a little bigger than they already are – here is our list of the top six exercises to boost bicep mass.

1.)  Reverse Curls

This exercise is sadly not performed as much as it should be, especially for those who are trying to develop bigger biceps. Reverse curls primarily workout your brachialis, which is the muscle that lies beneath the biceps, and the secondary muscles being worked are biceps and your forearms. You can perform these with a variety of different methods such as barbell, dumbbell, and the cable machine.

2.)  Preacher Curls

When it comes to isolation this variation of the biceps curl places great emphasis on the muscle heads. Squeeze your muscles and increase the blood flow as you perform each repetition with the preacher curl. This is going to stimulate your muscle and increase its development. Keep in mind that the preacher curl is not an exercise to show off how much weight you can pump out. You will benefit from performing this exercise with a moderate weight amount and higher repetition amount than normal heavy lifts.

3.) The Standing Barbell Curl

If you have any interest in building your biceps up in order to look like a tank, the standard barbell bicep curl is the best all-inclusive bicep exercise. Regardless of the amount of weight, your body will use all of the bicep muscles and some forearm muscles to raise the weight as you flex the arm closed. The standard curl forces the arm to work in relative isolation from the back and shoulders, but on one condition – you can’t cheat.

Torso swinging is common, and needs to be avoided if you want the most effective workout. The goal is to remain stationary, flexing the arm at the elbow joint without moving your upper body. Perform this bicep curl by holding a barbell in both hands. Hold the weight with your palm outward and let the weight hang at your hip so that your arm is fully extended downward. Tuck your elbow into your sides and curl the weight to your chin without moving your elbow, hips or torso. Maintain tension, let the weight down slow. Do not bounce the weight off your hips or quads to start the next rep.

4.) Barbell Bicep Curls

The classic and king to bulking up your biceps. The key to this exercise is to make sure you get the full range of motion and don’t let momentum cause you to lean back as you lift. This common mistake will prevent the biceps from truly getting the workout you want them to have. Barbell curls will allow you to lift much more weight than many of the other exercises we put on the list – allowing you to power up those biceps with this exercise.

5.) The Hammer Curl

While a significant amount of focus is given to the bicep, some of the muscle groups within the forearm will be working as well. Because the focus here is on a rotated curl there is a lot of emphasis on the brachialis and brachioradialis of the forearm.

The starting position for this curl is identical to the alternating curl, where the palms face in toward the body. Your elbows remain tucked in with your body and upper arms remaining stationary. Lift the weight, curling it upward without rotating the weight or forearm to the point where the weight is almost touching the shoulder of your lifting arm. Think of the motion of swinging a hammer – this is also where the bicep exercise got its name.

6.) Reverse Grip Rows

Reverse Grip Rows will place a greater stress and pressure on the biceps as opposed to straight rows – this makes them better at targeting the bicep muscles. Once again, isolating the biceps specifically is the best way to maximize muscle growth – making this another excellent addition to your bicep workouts.

To perform Reverse Rows, hold a barbell with a supinated grip a bit more than shoulder-width apart. Keep your feet hip-width apart and your knees slightly bent. Bend forward at the waist slightly, and keep your back straight and your chest up. This will be your starting position. Pull the barbell to your torso by flexing the elbow and retracting the shoulder blades. Avoid jerking the weight backward by extending your back or hips. Reverse the motion to return the weight to the starting position.
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Friday, March 16, 2018

Tips For Beach Body Abs

Overview

With summer here everyone wants to stroll down the beach with their abdominal muscles on show for the whole world to gaze at, but how do you get your abs into such amazing shape? Well fear not, as I will be revealing tips to make sure you never have to wear a T-shirt again. Visible abs are made of the upper abdominals, obliques (sides), the lower abdominals, and the rectus abdominis. When working abs you need to hit all of these regions and this workout below helps you do just that.






Another tip for beginning six pack abs workouts is to warm up before you start. It's one of the best ways to get a six pack, though it sounds like another no-brainer. To those beginning ab workouts, you might think that a short jog or a little stretching isn't necessary.

Diet

The first thing you're going to have to change will be your diet. It goes without saying that even if you had the best abs in the world, it will still look pretty ordinary if a layer of bodyfat covers it. Diet plays a crucial role in defining your midsection so some modifications will be required in order for your body to look it's best. To begin with, get into the habit of using a diet log to keep track of your meals. Everyone is less likely to cheat when they know they have to write down everything they've eaten each day. An elaborate journal isn't necessary either; a simple notepad can work just fine. Also, begin switching to six small meals a day now instead of three larger ones to help rev up your metabolism as well as prevent the stretching of the stomach and the abdominal walls which occurs when one gorges themselves in food.

Next, you'll want to start creating a slight caloric deficit each day to help burn away the bodyfat. It is recommended that you work on losing only a pound or two, a week, of bodyfat. The weekly loss of any more weight than this, for the typical person, probably includes substantial amounts of water weight and muscle tissue and can wreck havoc on your metabolism. Remember, it's the bodyfat that's covering your abs that you'll want to lose so a good rule of thumb is to cut back your daily energy requirements by only around 500 calories a day.

Now if you're not sure what your daily energy requirements are for your current bodyweight (or the amount of calories you will have to consume each day to stay at your current weight), you can use this easy-to-remember formula as a guide. To estimate your daily total caloric needs, multiply 24 times 1.0 (if you're a man) or 0.9 (if you're a woman) by each kilogram of bodyweight you weigh. Then multiply that result by 1.7 (for a moderately active man) or 1.6 (for a moderately active woman).

(Men) 1.7 x 24 x 1.0 x bodyweight (in kg)

(Women) 1.6 x 24 x 0.9 x bodyweight (in kg)

To determine how many kilograms you weigh, divide your bodyweight in pounds by 2.2. Remember though that this formula is only a guide. It is highly recommended that you use the formula as a starting point, and then pay close attention to your body in order to fine-tune your calories according to how your body responds to your efforts. Look at your body in a mirror, if it doesn't appear (or feel) as if your body is losing any weight after a week or two, then reduce the amount of calories you ingest even more.

Cardio

You'll next want to start including cardio (aerobic exercises) into your weekly routine. There are few short-term options that can burn calories and strip away the bodyfat better than sessions of aerobic activities. It is no coincidence that even top-level bodybuilders will steadily increase their cardio workouts as a contest approaches to help really bring out their muscle definition. Begin by working out 3-4 times per week for 20 to 30 minutes at a time on a treadmill or a stationary exercise bike. Then work your way up to more intense sessions of at least moderate intensity for 45 minutes or longer by weeks 3 and 4. The last few weeks before you hit the beach, you'll want to include interval training into your routine to really help blast away the last few pounds of bodyfat.

Exercise

Spot-reducing your way to abdominal definition is a myth. It is impossible to localize fat loss over any one specific area of your body and is the reason why it is important for you to also watch your diet and include aerobic training if you truly wish to showcase some beach-body abs. But the inclusion of some solid abdominal training is still important for great abs. Strengthening the abdominal wall will tone and help reduce, if not prevent, any unnecessary sagging of the belly. Also, abdominal workouts will certainly develop the muscles of the ab (particularly the rectus abdominus and the external obliques) and enable them to easily become more visible, sharper and tight.


While there are literally hundreds of abdominal exercises to choose from, it is important that several considerations are first kept in mind before performing any of them. First, it is strongly recommended that you learn how to focus on feeling the contraction of your abs when exercising and really squeeze the muscle at the top of any rep. There are many individuals out there who lay claim to performing several hundred sit-ups per day, but it is the quality that counts here and not necessarily the quantity. Become more efficient when performing your abdominal exercises and allow the muscle do the work and do not use the mechanical involvement of other bodyparts or even momentum to help swing the body in order to complete any reps. Additionally, make sure that you maintain continuous tension while performing your reps and never allow your body to rest at the bottom of a movement. Finally, be sure to breathe in during the relaxation phase of your movements and exhale during the contraction phase of the reps.

Having now prepared yourself, choose three exercises to perform for your abs and complete 2 sets, of 15 - 20 reps on each exercise, three times a week. Once again, focus on squeezing the muscle at the top of the movement and go in a slow, deliberate manner during each repetition. Recommended abdominal exercises for beginners during their first week would be crunches (with legs supported on a bench), seated twists, and knee-ups or lying leg raises. As the next few weeks progresses and your conditioning improves, you will need to increase the intensity factor for the abs to really shine. Begin by increasing the number of sets of each exercise from two to three and then add additional, more advanced, movements to allow for up to five exercises for your abs. Recommended abdominal exercises during this stage could include reverse crunches, crunches on an incline board, vertical leg raises, medicine-ball twists and decline-bench twisting crunches. You literally have from hundreds of movements to choose from. During the last two weeks before you hit the beach, begin cutting back on the rest time between your sets and also start to include supersets of your exercises in which you complete one set of each exercise without stop.

While there are still other factors that could be included for consideration of your ab training, consistently eating a lean diet, performing cardio work and exercising your abs with sufficient intensity will always remain at its core. Put in the work on those three tenets of abdominal development and you'll be sure to possess a beach-body that will look great in a bathing suit and absolutely turn heads this summer!
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Friday, March 9, 2018

Top Start bursting out of your sleeves with this bicep workout

Owning a set of giant pipes signifies that you possess the strength of a giant. That could be why the bi’s are the muscle that nonbodybuilders most easily relate to—even if they think the whole bodybuilding thing is strange. 




The biceps are a fusiform muscle with two heads (bi = two, ceps = heads) and actually span two joints, though for practical purposes we treat them as if they span only the elbow joint. To thoroughly train the biceps, we shouldn’t think about angles per se but instead the degree of stretch. Biceps should be trained in both the shortened and fully stretched starting positions. An example of a shortened starting position is a bentover one-arm curl. Likewise, the biceps should be trained with a stretched starting position, such as when doing incline curls.

bicep workout

Barbell Curl 4 sets x 10 repetitions (30-40 seconds of rest between sets)

With the barbell curl, you’ll pick a weight that you can do for 15 reps, but you’re only going to do 10. Rest for 30 seconds, then do 10 more. Rest for 30 seconds and go for another 10. Rest 30 seconds and do one final all-out set.

Although the first set will seem easy, the fact that you’re only resting for 30-40 seconds will mean that the last set or two will be hard work. In fact, you might not even be able to do 10 reps in the final set.

As soon as you’re able to do 10 reps in all 4 sets, increase the weight for the next workout.

Ring Dips 3 sets x 5-10 repetitions (60-90 seconds of rest between sets)

Using rings to do dips is a great way to make the exercise more challenging. If you don’t have any rings available, just do regular parallel bar grips.

It’s best to avoid bench dips, as they put your shoulder in a position that can lead to an injury, especially if you’ve got several 20-kg plates on your lap.

Make no mistake about it, ring dips are a very difficult exercise. So make sure that you can do at least 20 bodyweight dips using parallel bars before moving on to the rings.

Spider Curls 2 sets x 8-10 repetitions (45-60 seconds of rest between sets)

The Spider Curl isn’t an exercise that you’ll see very often. It earned most of its limited popularity from bodybuilding legend Sergio Oliva. If you’re not familiar with Oliva, he was the reigning Mr. Olympia until he was beaten by a rising star called Arnold Schwarzenegger.

With most bicep exercises, it’s easy to cheat and let other muscles do some of the work, something that’s almost impossible with the Spider Curl.

Lay with your torso facing down, on the back of the incline bench, with your legs shoulder width for balance. Hold a barbell with shoulder width grip. When completing the curl bring your arms slightly forward to increase the emphasis on the curl.

Aim for a total of 18 reps across 2 sets. As soon as you hit that number, increase the weight in the next workout.

Skull Crushers 2 sets x 8-10 repetitions (45-60 seconds of rest between sets)

Using a close grip, lift the barbell and hold it with your elbows in as you lie on the bench.Keeping the upper arms stationary, lower the bar by allowing the elbows to flex. Lift the bar back to the starting position by extending your elbow.

As with the Spider Curl, aim for a total of 18 reps across the 2 sets. As soon as you can do it, increase the weight in the next workout.

To finish off your arms and leave them really pumped, you’re going to do a couple of drop sets after the last set of the final two exercises.

To do a drop set, pick a weight where you reach exhaustion at 8-10 reps. As soon as you've hit muscular failure, drop the weight by 15-25% and aim for another 5-6 repetitions. Drop the weight by roughly 15-25% again, and grind out 3-4 repetitions.

Triceps Pressdown 1 set x 12-15 repetitions (+ 2 drop sets)

Face high pulley and grasp rope attachment or bar with clinched hands side by side (palms in). Position elbows to side.

Hammer Curl 1 set x 12-15 repetitions (+ 2 drop sets)

Stand up with your torso upright and a dumbbell on each hand being held at arms length. The palms of the hands facing your torso.. While holding your upper arm stationary, exhale and curl the weight forward while contracting the biceps.

The Hammer Curl is one of the best exercises for building the brachialis, which runs underneath the biceps. It's really only visible when looking at the arms from the side, but will make your arms appear much larger when viewed this way.
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Friday, March 2, 2018

Top six Ways to Build Muscle Mass

When most people think of building muscle and gaining weight, it seems like quite a long process with a lot of work involved. However, generally this is because people aren’t really sure of the best techniques to use or the latest research involved, which can both speed up the process.



Let’s face it, it seems like we all want more definition in our legs, arms and abs. I can’t think of one woman who wouldn’t like that perfect, subtle, feminine line on her bicep, or a man who doesn’t want a big chest and arms. However, for most these results have seemed nearly impossible to achieve…until recently.

Below are six simple ways to help you build muscle and gain weight fast:

1) Eat protein before bed and prior to working out

New research in the Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise reports that taking 20 grams of protein after working out, and then again half an hour before bed, increases muscle growth naturally. You body will be working for you while you sleep!

It is important to know that 20 grams of protein equates to seven ounces of Greek yogurt. Don’t like Greek yogurt? You can also get this protein by gulping down two large glasses of low-fat milk! How simple is that!

2) Do resistance exercise training

The most effective way to increase muscle strength and muscle mass is resistance exercise training. Resistance exercise is usually done with free weights or weight machines; however, fast sprints on an ergometer at high resistance can also achieve increases in strength and mass.

To ensure one doesn’t burn out and can pack on the weight from resistance training, one study in the European Journal of Sport Science mentioned the importance of restoring the depleted glycogen in your muscles by consuming carbohydrates (>1 g per kg) and protein (>10g) early after an exercise session.

3) Set a Goal and Stick with it!

This may seem like a repetitive statement, but you must understand how important this method is when it comes to gaining muscle mass. You need to figure out what you realistically want to achieve in the time frame you set for yourself, and once you achieve that start a new goal. For example, you weigh 160lbs. and want to gain 20lbs. of muscle in five months. This is the goal you have set, and realistically this is possible for most anybody to accomplish. Now you have to stick with that goal and actually continue on the path while also giving up some or most pleasures such as alcohol.

4) Diet: Eat Plenty of Food!

Food is not your enemy when it comes to muscle building, and you are going to eat plenty of it. First thing to realize with weight training is that your muscles are tearing the tissue, and food/protein is what helps them repair and recover, which then becomes the process of muscular growth. The next reason you need to eat a lot is because it is virtually impossible to gain muscle mass pound for pound without having weight on your body to turn into muscle in the first place. The process to build muscle mass is like this: Gain body weight through eating, and then shred it down into muscle.

So for two weeks you need to eat 4,000 to 5,000 calories a day with 250g of protein as well (or more depending on your current weight). During these two weeks you will be performing heavy weight training for five days consecutively. After this time frame you will cut back drastically for a week. That means 1,500 to 2,000 calories a day, and then only perform light training every other day of that week. This is going to send your hormones sky rocketing and then place your body in a natural anabolic state. Simply repeat this process for 4-6 months.

5) Change your Routine

Your body is going to start recognizing a trend in training, and when this happens eventually your body will no longer experience any muscle gains. What you need to do is constantly change your workout routine every couple of weeks, which can be as easy as performing an exercise with dumbbells instead of the barbell. Research has even shown that a new surrounding such as visiting a different gym can stimulate your mind, which makes a better training cycle.

6) Do resistance exercise training

The most effective way to increase muscle strength and muscle mass is resistance exercise training. Resistance exercise is usually done with free weights or weight machines; however, fast sprints on an ergometer at high resistance can also achieve increases in strength and mass.

To ensure one doesn’t burn out and can pack on the weight from resistance training, one study in the European Journal of Sport Science mentioned the importance of restoring the depleted glycogen in your muscles by consuming carbohydrates (>1 g per kg) and protein (>10g) early after an exercise session.
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