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Saturday, June 29, 2019

Stretch Your Way To A More Muscular Body - bodybuilding110

Building muscle primarily takes place in two places: the kitchen and the gym. If you’re a seasoned lifter, you know the importance of properly fueling your body in order to get results. You need to have high levels of protein intake, for example, and low levels of sugar and carbohydrates. As for the gym, your workouts should probably be built around the three primary lifts, with plenty of auxiliary exercises rotated in.

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 Pre-Workout Stretching:

Pre-workout stretching exercises prepare the body for the workout it is about to do. The stretches are normally held for just 5 to 10 seconds. The reason of vivacious exercise is to boost movement of the joints through a particular range of motion. This surely helps to boost core temperature and blood flow in your body, and stir the central nervous system.

Study has shown that energetic stretches particularly improve force production and fiery power. They can also help out to increase body consciousness, and help with solidity and balance all in the warm-up, getting your body ready to work out in fitness center!

Post-Workout Stretching:

For post-workout stretches cool-down your body after work out, we recommends motionless stretching. Like vibrant stretching, it particularly improves elasticity by moving joints through a precise range of motion. However, dissimilar forceful stretching, it does not boost your core temperature. Static stretching represses the central nervous system, calming the muscle spindles by broadening them, and has been shown to truly reduce power and force production in numerous studies.

Stagnant stretching is immense to relax your muscles after an intensive workout. These kinds of stretches are generally passive; meaning somebody else is stretching you as you loosen up your body. Every position is held for 10 to 20 seconds and recurring four to si-x times. Individual muscles like hamstrings, quads, and hip flexors, are prolonged vs. dynamic moves, which generally involve your full body.

Both kinds of stretching are very helpful when done at the proper time.

The Bottom Line:

Your best bet: Do some energetic stretches before and after a workout, which can get ready your body and even develop muscular performance. With all the substantiation against it, it’s possibly smart to avoid static stretches before an exercise. Still, we believe stagnant stretches can be very useful for people who splurge a lot of time sitting at office desk.
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Thursday, June 27, 2019

Ways to Shoulder Press

The overhead press is to shoulder training what the squat is to leg day: the foundational movement from which all other exercises for its respective muscle group stem. When it’s time to train delts and decide on your workout for the day, the first question should be: What type of overhead press am I going to do?



Believe it or not, there are many more ways to answer this question than just “barbell” or “dumbbells.” Those pieces of equipment are in the discussion, of course, but so are machines and kettlebells; bilateral versus unilateral; pronated, supinated, or neutral grip; and seated, standing, or even kneeling. The overhead press (aka “shoulder press”) is a movement with way more variants than most guys utilize. Below are six such options, all of which should be fair game the next time you train delts.



1. Seated Dumbbell Press

When you sit during your dumbbell press, you can lift more weight because you can use your back to push against the seat. This means you can grow your muscles faster since you can create more micro-tears in your muscle fiber with the heavier weight.


To perform this exercise, sit on a seat with a low back or an upright bench with two dumbbells. Lift them just outside your shoulders with your palms facing forward. You will need to contract your deltoids and extend your elbows straight upwards until both of the dumbbells are raised over your head with your arms almost locking out. Lower the dumbbells to their primary position slowly and congratulations, you’ve just completed a rep. Do the seated dumbbell press as your first exercise, if you’re not doing the military press. If you are, save the seated dumbbell press for another day or do them right after the military press, which brings us to…

2. Military Press

Military presses are thought to be the fourth big lift, along with bench press, squat and deadlift exercises, but if you really want to test your mettle, the classic standing barbell press will do the job. Your upper-body pushing strength is put to the test, but it’s way more than just a triceps and deltoid movement. You will also need a lot of core stabilization to do military presses, as well as a tough midsection as a foundation from where the pressing begins.


To perform the military press, hold a barbell with an overhand, shoulder-width grip while standing. Lift the bar up to your shoulders while bending your knees a bit, and then tense up your whole body. While making sure that your lower body and torso are solid, press the bar over your head and contract your deltoids while extending your arms. You don’t need to lock out, so stop right before you do. Lower the bar down and remember to not let it rest on your chest or shoulders between reps. Do this exercise first in your shoulder workout and make sure to not have any other big lifts on the same day.


3. Machine Press

Everyone who’s anyone in the bodybuilding world recommends machine presses for one of two reasons – first, it’s safe because the motion is controlled by the machine, which means little to no risk of injury when compared to using dumbbells or barbells, and second, you can overload your target muscles because the machine eliminates the need for some of your stabilizing muscles because it is a stabilizing agent itself. It’s a far safer and a bit more effective deltoid exercise, so of course it should be on this list.

Do this exercise on an overhead press machine. Start by adjusting your seat so that you’re able to extend your arms through the entire range of motion, but you should also be able to put the handles down to your shoulders without the weight being on the stack. Sit and hold the handles with your hands just outside your shoulder width, with your palms facing forward. Squeeze your deltoids to press your handles straight up until your arms are fully extended, but not locked out. Put the weight back in the starting position to do another rep. Do this exercise early in your training instead of barbell or overhead dumbbell presses.

4. Smith Machine Press

When you do the Smith machine press, you will benefit from the extra safety and overload benefits as the machine press, except you will be doing some barbell presses since you’ll be grabbing a bar instead of some rubber handles. You can’t make a clear difference in efficacy between the Smith machine, Hammer Strength overhead presses or a selectorized machine since they have pretty much the same effect. Instead, you can switch up the varieties in your training routine and pick a favorite that gives you a better feeling.


Do this exercise by sitting on an upright bench or a seat with a back to it, in the middle of the Smith machine in a position where if you lower the bar, it will almost touch your head. Sit and take the bar with a grip wider than your shoulders with your palms facing forward. Unhook the latches and lower it down just below your chin. Press the bar up and over your head, but don’t lock out your elbows when you get to the top of the movement. Lower the bar and repeat. Place this exercise early in your training regimen instead of dumbbells, machines or a barbell overhead press.

5. Arnold Press

The Arnold press is named after Schwarzenegger himself. Have your wrists out so that when you get to the top of the movement, you will only be adding a frontal deltoid effect to a seated overhead press. This exercise will also affect your upper chest region. You can do it while sitting or standing, but if you sit your back will be protected and you’ll be able to lift more.


To perform this exercise, sit on a seat or a bench with a pair of dumbbells. Hold them in front of your shoulders with a supinated grip, which means your palms should be facing you. Press the weights upwards and turn your wrists outwards, so at the height of the movement, your palms face away from you and towards your front. Lower your dumbbells while rotating your wrists back into a supinated grip. Do this exercise early in the workout instead of lower back or barbell exercises or even normal overhead dumbbell presses. You can also do it after any of these, your choice.


6. One-Arm Press

The point to this exercise is for it to be unilateral, which will let you balance both your strength and your progress in both of your sides. It’s really tricky to make both sides equal, so this exercise helps. If both sides are lifting at the same time even with dumbbells and kettlebells, the stronger side makes up what the weaker side lacks. When you press with one side only, you can see the strength imbalance and you can work on fixing it by doing unilateral exercises.


To perform this exercise, take a kettlebell or a dumbbell in one hand right in front of your shoulder. Have your elbow bent and the weight should be lying on the outside part of your forearm. Stabilize your core and slightly bend your knees. Press up with all your might straight upwards and turn your wrist forward. This means that the kettlebell should be behind your forearm when you get to the top of the movement. Bring your weight back down slowly and perform all the following reps with that arm. Switch arms and go again. Do this exercise early in the routine, instead of a barbell overhead press, an Arnold press or a two-arm dumbbell overhead press.



Finally, here is an outline of what these exercises should look in your training regimen.

  • 3-4 sets of machine presses with 8 reps each. Remember to switch between Smith machine overhead presses, military presses or seated dumbbell overhead presses.
  • 2-3 sets of Arnold press. Switch between one-arm dumbbell or kettlebell presses.
  • 3 sets of upright rows with 12 reps each.
  • 3 sets of dumbbell or cable lateral raises with 12 reps each. You can superset this exercise with some reverse pec deck for your rear delts. Do 3 sets with 15 reps each for this exercise.
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Monday, June 24, 2019

Best 8 Triceps Movements For Mass

If you want strong, well-defined arms choosing the right tricep exercises for building mass needs to be your number one priority.  Your triceps are made up of 3 Tricep brachii heads: long – lateral – medial. Each of the tricep brachii heads have key rolls in all your pushing movements such as Bench Press, Standing Barbell Press and Dips.  Any pushing movement will engage your tricep muscle at some point.  Most guys training reguarly at the gym understand the importance of tricep exercises however the majority of people still prioritise their biceps over their triceps into their workouts.



1. Close-Grip Bench Presses. These should be performed on chest day, after you’re done with the bench. Use them as a segue into your triceps workout.

2. Skullcrushers. This exercise will help you pack on more mass than any of them, but you will need some gloves and a spotter so that you don’t injure yourself. Get some heavy weights but make sure that you can handle your weight!

3. Overhead Extensions. Get a heavy dumbbell, warm up properly and start pumping. If you don’t warm up, you might injure yourself – that much weight on a cold arm is too much.

4. Dumbbell Kickbacks. While this technique doesn’t have a great reputation as it has been used in all sorts of gym imitating commercials and “sports” shows with little plastic dumbbells. When you do it with 35 or 35 pound dumbbells, it tends to make you realize that it’s still a great exercise.

5. Cable Pressdowns. Do these with a lot of weight on the machine and your triceps will grow like never before, but make sure that you keep your form properly tightened. If you think you can do it, go for more reps.

6. Cable Pressdowns Behind Your Head. This movement lets you have a far larger range of motion than the other, standard pressdowns. Make sure to warm up though, if you don’t want to be sore the entire week.

7. Seated Extensions. Get an EZ-curl bar and do some overhead extensions with it. They’re far safer than skullcrushers but comparable in results. Make sure to have total control over the weight and move through the exercise very slowly to avoid injury.

8. Inclined Close-Grip Bench Presses. This exercise targets your triceps in a whole different way than most close-grip bench presses out there, so make sure you throw them into your routine!
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Sunday, June 23, 2019

Keys To Build Muscle With Total Body Workouts

Whether your goal is to get bigger and stronger, or improve power and explosiveness for sports, you want to see progress — and pronto.

But building muscle efficiently requires more than just putting in time at the weight rack. Along with your strength training regimen, diet and lifestyle choices all play important roles.

Before you even start thinking about how to build muscle, it’s instructive to know the primary factors that determine just how much of it you can gain.


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3 Factors Affecting Muscle Growth

These are the main criteria dictating increases in muscle size, or hypertrophy — and two of them are outside your control.

Sex

Simmer down — we’re talking gender. The male persuasion unsurprisingly has a decided advantage when it comes to building muscle. That’s due in large part to far greater levels of testosterone and a higher red blood cell count among men than women, who typically have to go to more extraordinary lengths to gain size.

Genetics

Similar to the way it governs how much hair you get to keep, heredity determines how much muscle you can develop. Thanks to genetics, a segment of the populace is born with a higher number of type II, or fast-twitch, muscle fibers, which have the greatest potential for growth.

Training Specificity

The factor you can change — and the one we’ll spend much of this article focusing on — is the approach you take to your workouts overall. There are different protocols that distinguish lifting for mass from lifting for strength.

Generally speaking, lifting very heavy weights in low volume is how to gain strength, and lifting moderately heavy weights in high volume is how to gain muscle.

For those seeking tips on how to gain muscle, here are some strategies to get you started.

Constrain Workout Length To 60-Minutes

There is actually some pretty interesting research on the length of training.
Generally what you want to do is keep your sessions around 45 minutes to no more than 60 minutes.
Studies show that when you go beyond that mark your body begins to wear down and a catabolic environment is progressively created.  This has a lot to do with glycogen and ATP.
ATP is the primary fuel source of muscles.
It’s derived from glycogen.
Studies show that when glycogen gets depleted muscle breakdown is significantly enhanced.
And, in the same way, when ATP is depleted it is also enhanced.
It’s really a linear thing.  Glycogen begins to deplete during your training and then ATP generation suffers.  When this begins to happen then cortisol starts rising.
Basically, your body is getting more and more “stressed”.
When you start a lift your testosterone and other anabolics naturally will increase.
Studies show they peak at around the 30-minute mark or shortly before.
They hold there for a bit of time and then they begin to decrease as your cortisol levels build up.  When cortisol goes up testosterone goes down.  And, muscle breakdown begins to increase.
This is a vital piece of information for all exercise sessions regardless of if you are doing total body workouts or not.
However, it’s especially important for total body training in which you have the goal of maximizing your muscle benefits.
People get this idea that when you train every single muscle group in one session it is ok to train longer.
And so what inevitably happens is that they have these big long 90-minute to two-hour sessions.
Well, all that is going to do is begin to get you overtrained.
It makes no difference if all you are training is your chest in a workout or if you are training your entire body (legs, back, chest, shoulders, and arms) the length of that workout must be taken into consideration.


Limit The Number Of Exercises To 5-7


Once again, the length of your workout is vital.
We are focussed on getting the best possible results and to do that we set a hard limit on how long we are in the gym.

Now, this becomes a bit of an issue when you are training all of your muscles within the same session.
At least, it can be.
What you get is this wrong thinking mindset in which you try to simply combine all of your other workouts together.
A prototypical workout split based in which you are training certain muscle groups within the same workout would look as follows:



  • Monday: Chest/Back
  • Tuesday: Legs/Shoulders
  • Wednesday: Rest
  • Thursday: Chest/Back
  • Friday: Legs/Shoulders
  • Weekend: Rest
There are other ways to build muscle.  Some guys actually prefer a one muscle group per session routine that looks as follows:

  • Monday: Chest
  • Tuesday: Back
  • Wednesday: Arms
  • Thursday: Legs
  • Friday: Shoulders
  • Weekend: Rest
Or, something similar to that.

Either way works and it’s really a matter of preference.
However, let’s say you want to cut down on the number of days you train each week.  You only have two days to make it to the gym but you still want good results.
Well, what many will try to do is just carry all of the exercises from each muscle group into their full body workout.
That means they just try to combine all of the workouts they would be doing into one giant workout.
They will do something along the lines of bench press, overhead press, squats, lunges, deadlift, and on and on all in the same session.
You will have a compound dominant two-hour session and it will get you overtrained in a matter of one week.
We discussed a good number to shoot for in the past and that number is no more than 5 exercises per session.  When it comes to full body workouts the same basic thing applies
Although, I generally don’t mind stretching that to 7 exercises.
Just note, you certainly don’t need that.
Which means you need to be doing the exercises that are the best for each muscle group.
An example would be:


  • Barbell Back Squat for legs
  • Bench Press for chest
  • Dumbbell Overhead Press for shoulders
  • Pull-Ups for back
  • You could throw in a superset of bicep curls and triceps push down at the end.
That is just a very rough example.

It contains 4 base exercises and a quick arm superset.  6 exercises in total to be performed in no more than 60 minutes.
You would do that on a Monday and come back and repeat Thursday or something.  That would be training each muscle group two times per week.
Some will find that that is also too much.
Another way to handle your total body weekly routine is to just train each muscle group one time per week.
Actually, I prefer that way.
For your Monday session, you could train only upper body.  For your Thursday session, you could train your lower body and arms.  It’s not a traditional full body workout but it is close to it.
Again, these are just examples.
The point is that you want to limit the number of exercises you are doing for each session.

Train All Muscle Groups At Least Once


This should go without saying.
The goal is to train each muscle group at least one time per week.
How you go about doing that is really up to you.
There is not really much else to say here.  The goal of training is to stimulate the muscle but not annihilate it.  I believe it was 8x Mr. Olympia Lee Haney who first coined that phrase.
In my experience, you can accomplish this just by stimulating each muscle group one time per week.
That is plenty.
Actually, it is optimal if you are over 40.  But, even if you are under 30 it is still an excellent way to go about it.  It will ensure that all of your muscles have plenty of rest time in between workout sessions.
Again, if you are focussed on total body workouts this can be a bit confusing.
The confusion would be that it’s called “total body”.
And so you have this idea that you need to be working your upper and lower body together.
Well, if you do that on Monday and then on Thursday then what you end up with is training each muscle group two times per week.
And, honestly, that is pretty much the traditional way to handle full body training and it’s actually a great way to do it.  At least, keeping in mind that you want to limit the number of exercises you are doing for each session.
However, another way to handle a total body workout is to just do an upper and lower body split.
Or, a sort of hybrid.

An example would be:


  • Monday: Chest, Back, Calves, Abs
  • Thursday: Legs, Shoulders, Arms, Abs
Again, that’s just an example.
There are a lot of ways to segment your total body workouts.
However, just remember that your goal should be to train all muscle groups at least one time per week but typically no more than two.
Limit Your Total Training Volume.
Naturally, if the length of your sessions and the number of exercises for each session is constrained then you will also be controlling your volume.
Studies show that when training at around 60 – 85 percent of your one rep max that somewhere between 90 -180 reps of total weekly volume per each muscle group is pretty much optimal.
Again, that is just research.
Research is certainly flawed.
Some people can handle more volume and some not as much.  However, it is a good amount to shoot for.
And, just keep in mind that the heavier you train the lower on that rep range you will be.
That is just a general estimate it will very much depend on training experience and certain genetic factors.  Generally speaking, younger guys that are less experienced in the gym can handle more volume.
Their bodies have a lot of gains left in the tank.
But, even so, high volume training is not needed to build muscle.
In my experience, the best results are typically achieved by limiting volume.
Total body training can be problematic for the simple fact that it tends to get into super high volume.
You’ll have people trying to do 3 sets of 10 reps for ten or more exercises.  You end up with 300+ reps for each workout and that is just way too much.
Your body cannot recover from that.
That is, not unless you are taking steroids or something.
Just keep in mind that if you want to focus on training each muscle group per workout then you need to keep your volume in check for each session.  It can easily run out of control if you are not paying attention.

Rest At Least 3 Days Between Workouts


We discussed how many days rest you should get between workout in the past.

Studies show that when your body is recovering from a workout all sorts of things are happening:


  • The removal of metabolic end products (lactate, for example)
  • Restoration of intramuscular PH
  • Replenishing phosphagens so your body can regenerate ATP
  • Rebalancing sodium and potassium within muscle cells.
  • And much more

 And this is why research indicates it can take 48-72 hours for the muscle to recover enough in order to begin another workout.
That is two to three full days of not training.
In other words, you do not go to the gym.
The standard protocol with total body workouts is to work out two to three days per week.
The issue is that training all muscle groups at one time will mean you need more rest between sessions.  And, in my experience, the minimum is three full days if you want to optimize muscle gains.
Most people simply cannot go three full-body sessions per week and expect to get good results.
You need more time between the gym.
Failure to understand this is a recipe for getting yourself overtrained and when you do that you will not be building muscle.
It’s the issue that so many people run into with Crossfit.
Crossfit is great but the training is too intense to be doing multiple times per week with only a day or so rest in between.
The same thing goes for intense weightlifting in which you are focussed on compound lifting.
Your body needs time to recover.
Studies also show that the more muscle mass you have the longer it takes to recovery.
It’s why men generally need more time to recover than women.  It’s also why those who have been training for several years are generally going to need more time than newbies.  However, generally speaking, if you are eating right then you should be fine with three days rest in between session.
If you need more time then take it.
Going four days between intense total body workouts is perfectly acceptable in my experience.
Let’s say you Train on Monday at 6:30 p.m.
At a minimum the next training session would be Thursday at 6:30 p.m. if you are taking three days rest.


Final Thoughts On Total Body Workouts

What you’ll often hear is that you can’t make great gains with full body training.


In my experience, that is not true.
The reason most people struggle with it is that they are violating the volume limits of their body.  The number one way this comes about is in trying to do too many exercises per session.
You really only need just one exercise for each muscle group per session.
This is especially the case if you are focussed on the most effective movements.
Squats, for example, would be all you need to do to train your legs during a session.
Again, this is doubly so if you are planning on having another workout that week in which you train your legs again.
The 5 keys listed here are pretty much all geared toward providing just enough stimulation without exceeding your volume limits.  It’s pretty much the central focus of all weightlifting geared toward maximizing gains.
But, it needs to really be hammered home when it comes to a total body focus.


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Friday, June 21, 2019

5 of the Best Exercises for a Calves Workout

Have you ever seen the guys at the gym who have jacked upper bodies and bulging quads, but twigs below the knees? It’s clear they skimp on the calves exercises in their workouts. It can be easy to make these smaller muscles an afterthought, but strong calves don’t only help to balance out your appearance, they’re also key to gaining power and explosiveness both inside and outside the gym.

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“Your calf muscles help propel you forward and up in explosive movements,” says Cody Braun, Openfit fitness specialist. This makes them very useful for sprinting and plyometrics, and any activity that requires leg propulsion or foot stabilization upon landing, like cycling, running, volleyball, or basketball.

Tight calf muscles can limit your ankle mobility and potentially increase the likelihood of injuries like shin splints, plantar fasciitis, or Achilles tendonitis. That’s why it’s crucial to regularly train your calves, Braun says. To help you get started, we compiled a list of the best exercises and stretches for a comprehensive calves workout that can be done anywhere, even at home.

Calf Anatomy

“The two main muscles you’re trying to build when doing calf exercises are the soleus and the gastrocnemius,” Braun says. The gastrocnemius is the main muscle you see when looking at someone’s calves — it will be thick and well-defined if it’s highly developed. The soleus, in contrast, isn’t outwardly visible — it’s situated deep beneath the gastrocnemius. Both muscles work together to help flex your foot, but only the gastrocnemius plays a role in knee flexion (bending your knee).

Though the gastrocnemius is primarily responsible for the outward appearance and size of your calves, it’s important to engage and exercise both parts of the muscles, since each has a unique function. “The gastrocnemius contributes to jumping, acceleration, and explosive speed and power,” says William P. Kelley, C.S.C.S., ACT, while the soleus contributes to walking and running endurance. That’s because the soleus has a very high density of Type 1, or “slow twitch,” muscle fibers, he explains. Type 1 muscle fibers have slow contraction times and a high resistance to fatigue, which is helpful since your legs get a lot of action carrying your body from once place to another.

The Role of Genetics in Calf Development

You probably know someone who has massive, sharply defined calf muscles, yet rarely exercises. Meanwhile, you’ve been training your calves three times a week and still only see minimal results. What gives?

“Genetics play a role in your muscle makeup and size due to the allocation of Type I and Type II muscle fibers,” Kelley explains. While Type I fibers are more resistant to fatigue, they tend to have a lower growth potential than Type II, “fast twitch,” muscle fibers.

Everyone has a different percentage of Type I and Type II muscle fibers, meaning “someone with a genetic predisposition to Type II fibers may have a greater growth potential than someone who is more Type I dominant,” Kelley says.

If you weren’t born with naturally thick, shapely calves, don’t stress. “[Genetic makeup] does not prevent anyone from increasing calf strength and size,” Braun says, it might just require more work. The right workout routine, diet, and recovery plan can help you build stronger, more athletic calves no matter where you’re starting from.

8 of the Best Exercises and Stretches for a Calves Workout

Below are eight simple, but effective moves to help strengthen and stretch your calves. The best part? These calf exercises are easy to do at home. All you need is a jump rope, a pair of dumbbells, and a bench or chair.

Try incorporating these calf exercises into your workouts a couple times a week, Kelley says. But if you adhere to a demanding cardio routine, this amount may vary. “For example, a distance runner may need to resistance train calves less frequently to avoid overtraining,” he explains.




Standing Barbell Calf Raise

Stand upright with a barbell supported on your upper back. With your toes pointing forwards, raise your heels off the floor and contract your calves. Slowly return to the starting position.




Single Dumbbell Calf Raise

Put a weight plate on the floor and rest your toes on it whilst sitting on a bench. Place a dumbbell on your knee, your right hand holding the handle whilst your left hand holds the top. Lift up your toes as high as possible. Pause, then lower it back onto the weight and repeat.




Seated Calf Raise (Leg Press Machine)

Sit down at the leg press machine and rest your feet so just your toes are resting at the bottom of the platform. Push back as far as you can while keeping your feet against the platform. Return under control to the start position and repeat.




Farmer's Walk (On Tiptoes)

Grab a pair of dumbbells (or kettlebells) and hold them by your sides. Walk forward – on your tip toes – taking short, quick steps. At first, go for a lighter weight in order to maintain balance. Go for the given distance, as fast as possible.




Box Jump

Set yourself a comfortable distance from the box with feet shoulder width apart. Drop quickly into a quarter squat, swing your arms and explode upwards to jump onto the box. Land as softly as possible. Now step backwards off the box under control.






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Wednesday, June 19, 2019

20-Minute Bodyweight Workout for Weight Loss-bodybuilding110

Most quick cardio regimens for weight loss involve high-intensity interval training (HIIT) that leaves you gasping for air. And while they’re fantastic for conditioning and dropping fat, all that jumping around can take its toll on your joints and lead to muscle dysfunction and injury.

So, we’ve put together a workout that’ll get your heart pumping to ramp up your metabolism without stressing your body.
In this do-anywhere, bodyweight workout, you’ll push hard for 20 minutes to create core stability, open up tight hips, and get a much-needed cardio benefit that’s way more effective than jogging. We’ve designed this workout by alternating lower body and upper body movements as well as pushing and pulling exercises so there’s no need for rest. This way you can make the most of your time, performing two sets of these eight moves as a circuit.












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Sunday, June 16, 2019

Compound Movements and Muscle Growth - bodybuilding110

If you’re just starting out on your strength-building journey, you’ve probably happened across the term compound exercises, usually in the context of something you should be doing, like eating broccoli or watching PBS documentaries. Exercise experts don’t agree on much, but nearly all of them agree that compound exercises are a strength-and-fitness seeker’s best friend.

“The bulk of the exercises in most people’s workouts should be compound,” says Openfit Senior Manager of Fitness and Nutrition Content Trevor Thieme, C.S.C.S. The sooner you get to know these classic gym moves, the faster you’ll start making serious strides towards your goals.




I needed a routine that would allow me to keep gaining while cutting down on time spent in the gym. After conducting some research I came across an article and routine by Bill Starr (strength training legend). Mr. Starr’s approach to training was like night and day to what I was accustomed to. Bill preached using only compound movements to build strength, power and muscle mass. He was adamant against using any type of isolation exercise or any type of compound exercise derivative that would take away from developing compound movement strength.

At first, this seemed strange to me, especially since I was on my body building kick and doing set after set of isolation exercises and other compound movement derivatives. After reading his article, he made quite an impression. I started questioning my body building practices and started to really give his ideas some serious thought. I remember thinking to myself, "was it possible to spend 45 minutes in the gym and double my strength and muscle gains?" Well, there was only one way to find out. The routine was called the Strength Factor Routine and it went something like this: 


Monday (Heavy Day)

  • Back Squats 5 x 5 ramping to limit
  • Bench Press 5 x 5 ramping to limit
  • Deadlifts 5 x 5 ramping to limit or Bent-Over Rows: 5 x 5 ramping to limit
  • Incline Dumbbell Press 2 x 20
  • Calf Raises 3 x 30
Wednesday (Light Day)

  • Back Squats 5 x 5 using 50 lbs. less than Monday or Lunges: 4 x 6 ramping to limit
  • Good Mornings 4 x 10 or Stiff-Leg Deadlifts: 4 x 10
  • Standing Overhead Press 5 x 5 ramping to limit
  • Dips: When you can do 20 reps, start adding weight and drop the reps back to 8
  • Curls 3 x 15
Friday (Medium Day)

  • Back Squats 5 x 5 using 20 lbs. less than Monday
  • Incline Bench Press 5 x 5 ramping to limit
  • Shrugs 5 x 5 ramping to limit or Clean High Pulls 5 x 5 ramping to limit
  • Straight Arm Pullovers 2 x 20
  • Chins: 4 sets to failure 
I tried the routine and for the first two weeks and it felt strange. My body was getting accustomed to the new movements and workloads so it felt really weird. After the third week, I started to find my balance and control. After a month, I started to get strong. After two months, I started to get really strong. After three months I started getting pretty big. In fact, my co-workers started asking me how I got so big so fast. I remember my boss one time coming up to me and asking me how he could get big like I was.

Each session took about an hour which fit my schedule perfectly. After the fifth month, I modified the routine a bit and included different compound movements. I can say this with complete honesty, everything got big on my body including:  



  • Front of shoulders
  • Side of shoulders
  • Back of shoulders
  • Biceps
  • Triceps
  • Calves
  • Upper legs
  • Upper back
  • Mid back
  • Glutes 
If you really look at the routine, you can see that each compound movement hits all the major muscle groups including the smaller systems. Barbell bent rows hit the upper and mid back including rear shoulders and traps. Chins really hits the upper back and biceps. The bench press and incline hits the chest, front shoulders and triceps. Squats and dead lifts hit the entire body. The real beauty of this routine is the rest and recovery periods and the way it uses heavy, light and medium days.

You see, you really don't have to worry about the smaller groups not being trained. The compound movements listed above will train all the major muscle systems including the smaller groups, quite extensively.

Nick, I’m very confident that this type of routine is made for people who want to get big and strong, have limited training time and are serious. This routine is for you.

I suggest giving this routine a try and monitor your progress. I’m confident it’ll do wonders for you.

I don't think jogging will hurt your progress. In fact, it may help. As long as you keep the weight training a priority you should be fine.


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Saturday, June 15, 2019

7 Ways to Burn Fat on Vacation Without Going to the Gym

Burn calories without going to the gym this holiday season

Have you been skipping the gym lately? No judgment: So you overdid it on gingerbread lattes at Starbucks or grabbed too many fast-food meals after marathon shopping trips? No biggie—as long as you stay active in other ways. "A lot of people skip workouts completely when the holidays get busy and promise they’ll exercise in January,” says Mike Donavanik, a personal trainer in Los Angeles. “But it’s that much harder to motivate when you’ve skipped the gym for two-plus weeks.” While you don’t have to maintain your exact same exercise routine, keeping your body in motion will help you balance out the indulgences and start the year strong. To help you do that on the quick, we’ve rounded  research-backed ways to get more out of your workouts and improve your metabolism to boot.




1. Do exercises in the water.

Water workouts are very effective and are good for any pool or sea. Do this set of exercises every time you enter the water:

  •     Stand up straight, the water should be at the level of your neck. Put your hands straight and do leg swings trying to touch your palms with your toes. Do 3 sets of 10-15 reps on each leg.
  •     Run in place. Try to touch your buttocks with your heels and move your arms as if you are running on the ground. Try running for 10 minutes.
  •     Float on your back, put your hands palm down, and pull your knees to your chest. This exercise is for your abs. Do 3 sets of 10-12 reps. If it’s too hard, do the exercises separately on each leg.
  •     Move your arms along your body quickly, creating a wave. Do this for 5-10 minutes.
  •     Finish your workout with jumps in the water. When jumping, put your hands up. 3 sets of 15-20 reps should do the trick.

We hope that these recommendations will help you lose extra weight during your vacation. But maybe you have your own ways of losing weight? Tell us about them in the comment section below!

2. Swim for more than 20 minutes.

You will start burning extra calories after only 20 minutes of swimming. Here are a few tips to make swimming as efficient as possible:

  •     Swim for at least 30 minutes. The distance should be from 2000 ft to 2500 ft. If you are a beginner, you can start with 300 ft. But don’t take any breaks.
  •     The ideal water temperature is from 75°F to 82°F. And seawater is the best choice.
  •     Change the style (butterfly, freestyle, breaststroke, backstroke) and the intensity.

3. Use the sand.

A great way to lose extra pounds is to play on the sand. You can play beach volleyball and frisbee. It’s fun to play beach volleyball even if there are just 2 people. All you need is a ball. And the sand makes it harder but you will have so much fun that you won’t even notice it. The same works for running and other exercises on the beach.

4. Replace drinks with fresh juices and coconut milk.

This is one of the tastiest ways to lose weight while you’re on vacation. Replace the soft drinks or alcohol with fresh juice and you will notice a difference right away. If you want this method to be as effective as possible, you should follow our tips:

  •     Drink fresh juice with pulp.
  •     Drink a glass of juice 20 minutes before your meal. This way, you can reduce your hunger and your body will still get the necessary vitamins.
  •     Try unusual juices made with parsley, cucumbers, and vegetables (just stay away from cilantro and basil — they only make your hunger worse). But don’t overdo it (your digestive system needs time to get used to these products).
  •     Experiment with spices! Yes, if you add some cinnamon or pepper, it will not only help boost your metabolism, but also make your “juice menu” more diverse.
  •     Don’t drink juices in packs, replace them with the local alternatives like coconut milk and so on.

5. Walk properly.

Walking is great for health, but you already know that. In order to make walking even more efficient, follow our recommendations:

  •     Lift your head, walk straight, and put your shoulders down.
  •     Step on your foot starting from your heel, and kick off the ground only with your toes.
  •     Use your arms, swing them in the direction opposite of your leg movement.
  •     Walk at least 30 minutes a day (if you can walk for 45 minutes, even better). It’s really easy to do while you’re hiking or on a walking tour. You can enjoy the nature and improve your health at the same time.

6. Eat seafood instead of meat.

There is even an entire movement — pescatarianism where people replace meat with seafood. But we are not saying that you should stop eating meat completely.

Just replace chicken, beef, and pork with seafood while you’re on vacation. And it’s easy to do if you vacation is near the water. Some girls have managed to lose a lot of weight thanks to this diet.



7. Start the day with exercise.

Before you scarf down meal number one, get moving: Working out first thing in the morning can help you lose 20 percent more fat than exercising after breakfast, according to a 2013 study in the British Journal of Nutrition. For a quick sweat session, try this fat-burning HIIT workout that includes challenging moves like squat jumps and lunges, but can still be done in the comfort of your living room. The best part? It takes just 10 minutes to complete.
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Thursday, June 13, 2019

8 Simple Steps to Get Rid of Love Handles

Despite their cute name, there isn't much to love about love handles.

Love handles are another name for the excess fat that sits at the sides of the waist and hangs over the top of pants. Also known as a muffin top, this fat can be a challenge to lose.

Many people try to target this specific area with endless side crunches and other abdominal moves that target the obliques, muscles that run down the sides of the torso.


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However, this is not an effective way to lose love handles.

In order to get rid of love handles for good, you’re going to need to make dietary, exercise and lifestyle changes.

Here are 17 natural ways to get rid of love handles.

Step #1 – Eat A Healthy, Balanced Diet

When it comes to getting rid of your love handles, good nutrition is going to be a key part of your plan.

Many guys that want to lose their love handles will think about going on ‘a diet', which usually consists of cutting carbs or only eating salads.

These approaches are highly popular, but very rarely work for the long-term. They're quick fixes that eventually lead to falling off the diet, and oftentimes gaining more weight back.

We have a saying here at the Fit Father Project, which is, “You can't out-exercise a bad diet”.

This simply means that no matter how much exercise you do, if you're not eating healthily, you're basically wasting your time!

If your eating habits are poor, you're not going to be able to outrun the belly.

Essentially, there are two elements to healthy eating. The first is to eat a balanced diet; the second is to consume fewer calories than your body needs.

To manage these two things easily, start by looking at your meals.

The perfect meal plate is a ½ plate of vegetables, ¼ plate of protein, and ¼ plate carbohydrates.

This is enough basic nutrition advice to improve your eating habits and is very easy to put into practice.

Step #2 – Boost your intake of protein

Start adding high-quality protein to your diet if you don’t consume enough. This helps you lose fat and keeps you feeling full longer.

As proof, there were studies done that showed that diets with more protein helped to reduce belly fat faster.

Step #3 – Set up an aerobic fitness routine

Cardio is essential for reducing body fat. You should start regular aerobic exercises to get rid of love handles. Also, it would be great to consult with a professional trainer who can advise you on the optimal exercise program.

Maybe you could start with 30 min of jogging or running every other day and then slowly increase the time.

Step #4 – Drink Water to Stay Hydrated

Properly hydrating your body is a must for optimal health.

Though water is the best fluid to drink, many people tend to reach for sweetened beverages like sports drinks, teas and juice when they feel thirsty.

The calories and sugar found in sweetened beverages add up and can cause you to gain fat around the waistline.

Studies have shown that a higher intake of sugar-sweetened beverages is linked to weight gain, specifically in the abdominal area.

What’s more, liquid calories don’t have the same effect on hunger as solid food, making it easier to drink an excessive number of calories and sugar.

Instead of sugary beverages, hydrate with plain or sparkling water, or unsweetened tea.

Step #5 – Do Russian twists

Russian twists can be effective since they are more intense than ordinary sit-ups.

Take a seat on the floor with your knees bent. Use dumbbells or a medicine ball for added weight while twisting your torso from one side to the other.

Step #6 – Cut Back on Alcohol

An easy way to cut calories and lose weight is to cut back on alcoholic beverages.

Drinking too much alcohol has been linked to obesity and an increase in body fat, especially in the midsection.

In one study of over 2,000 people, moderate and excessive alcohol consumption was linked to a higher risk of overall and central obesity.

Alcohol also increases feelings of hunger by stimulating brain cells that regulate appetite, which may cause you to consume more calories.

Plus, many alcoholic beverages are loaded with calories and added sugar, which can cause you to gain weight.

While drinking small amounts of alcohol has been linked to health benefits like a reduced risk of heart disease, drinking too much isn’t good for your overall health or waistline.

Step #7 – Do bicycle crunches

Lie on your back with your legs straight and your hands behind your head, not clasped. Start by lifting your shoulders and upper back off the floor. Move your right elbow toward your left knee and then switch the sides.

You should do this exercise as quickly as possible.


Step #8 –Make Sure You Get Enough Sleep

We know as a busy Father it's not always easy to get a lot of sleep in each night, but it is essential to your well-being AND your efforts to get rid of love handles.

In order for your body to balance hormone levels and rebuild muscles, it's recommended that you get a minimum of 7 hours sleep every night.

When you sleep, there are a few different hormones that get affected, that can directly impact your ability to lose belly fat and your love handles.

Cortisol is your stress hormone. Higher levels of cortisol have been shown to create fat storage around your midsection, which is what leads to the development of love handles.

Ghrelin is your hunger hormone. The more you have of it the hungrier you will feel, so lowering your levels is good!

Leptin is the hormone that makes you feel full. Having more of this will help to prevent you overeating during the day.

Getting into a good habit of winding down before sleep will help you get good quality sleep too.
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Tuesday, June 11, 2019

What Does Weight Training Do For Your Body? bodybuilding110

Many individuals who exercise or are new to the fitness world feel strength training is only associated with more experienced athletes. This couldn't be further from the truth. There are too many physical, health, and mental benefits to leave strength training out of your workout schedule.



What is weight training?

Muscle training is a vital piece of a general work out regime. Strength training (which is also known as resistance training or weight training) is the utilization of opposition and endurance to muscular contraction to fabricate the force and energy, anaerobic perseverance and size of skeletal muscles. This means that muscle training depends on the rule that muscles of the body will work to defeat an obstruction drive when they are supposed to. When you do muscle training with the 6 weight plates for home use more than once and reliably, your muscles wind up more grounded.

Why you should take part in weight training?

Muscle training is ignored by numerous individuals for various distinctive accounts. Ladies may think their bodies will build up and make them look masculine, the parents may think weight training is excessively unsafe for their kids, and the elderly may stress over it being too arduous or hazardous for these equivalent accounts.

You might think that using the 6 weight plates for home use each week would just shave off inches off your midsection and hips, but the truth is that it can change your whole body and your wellbeing. The advantages of muscle training can remain for hours after an exercise period and can support your mindset throughout the day.

The Benefits of Weight Training.

There is actually a long list of why you should include strength training in your program.

  •     Not only does strength training increase your physical work capacity, it also improves your ability to perform activities of daily living (ADL's).  You will be able to work harder and longer with the proper weight training activities.
  •     It improves bone density.  One of the best ways you can control bone loss as you age is to add strength training into your workout plan.
  •     It promotes fat-free body mass with decreasing sarcopenia.  The lean muscle mass that we all work so hard for decreases with age.  If we don't add strength training to our routine then it will turn into fat.
  •     It Increases the strength of connective tissue, muscles, and tendons. This leads to improved motor performance and decreased injury risk.
  •     It improves your quality of life as you gaining body confidence.  Strength training will not only make you strong, but will also help with managing your weight.   
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Sunday, June 9, 2019

Simple Nutrition Rules to Get Stronger and Build Muscle - bodybuilding110

You’re a regular at the gym. Every chance you get, you’re lifting weights and working on your body. But even as you get stronger, you’re not seeing the muscle mass you want. Bulking up by building muscle mass requires a dedicated strategy.

This guide is about that. I’m going to share simple nutrition habits that I follow to be strong in the gym, and maintain a muscular and lean physique – without spending hours in the kitchen, or stressing over what I eat.


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Eat Protein with Each Meal

Protein is crucial for getting results when lifting weights. Without enough protein you don’t get proper recovery, and will not get proper progress.

Protein also helps with fat loss – it keeps you full longer, and has a higher thermic effect (more of your meal is burned for digestion if it’s higher protein).

Luckily you don’t need that much protein. You only need 0.82g of protein per lb of body-weight (1.8g/kg) for muscle recovery and to build extra muscle mass.

That means about 145g of protein if you’re 80kg/176lb.

The easiest way to get your daily protein intake is to eat a whole protein source with each meal

    Red Meat. Beef, pork, lamb, deer, buffalo, etc.
    Poultry. Chicken, turkey, duck, etc.
    Fish. Tuna, salmon, sardines, mackerel, etc.
    Dairy. Milk, cheese, cottage cheese, quark, yogurt, whey, etc
    Eggs

Eat Veggies with Each Meal

Veggies are low calorie. Salad actually has “negative calories” – it takes your body more energy to digest and absorb the food, than there are calories inside.

This makes veggies excellent for maintaining or losing weight (not for gaining weight though). Because you can eat your stomach full of veggies, so you don’t feel hungry, but while getting zero to no calories in.

A good goal is to have at least half your plate filled with veggies. This is the other benefits to eat veggies with each meal: it will push other things out of your plate. Most people eat way too many carbs because they’re easier to cook and cheaper. But carbs are higher in calories.

By aiming to eat at least half a plate of veggies each time, you are pushing other food sources out of your plate, and thus limiting how many calories you get. This makes it easier to maintain or lose weight.

Vegetables also have vitamins and minerals to help with recovery from lifting. And they have fiber to help with digestion.

Some of the best vegetables for lifters are:



  • Broccoli
  • Spinach
  • Salad
  • Kale
  • Cabbage
  • etc
If you hate veggies, learn to use spices and condiments. Stop steaming and boiling, it tastes disgusting that way. Grill the vegetables and add a tbsp of olive oil, with pepper and salt.
Limit Your Carb Intake

100g of pasta or rice or bread has almost 400kcal. That’s before you add any topping. Those calories are fine if you want to gain weight, but not for maintaining or losing weight.

To keep your weight under control, you need to control how many calories you eat. The easiest way to do that is by controlling your carb intake.

You should not stop eating carbs. Low carb diets are popular, but few people can stick to them long-term.Because carbs are everywhere and most people like their taste. I like bread, I like pizza, I like oatmeal. I don’t want a life without pizza. And I’m not going to eat fake cabbage crust pizza.

Keep eating carbs but limit their intake. One simple rule is to eat carbs only once per day, like after your workout. You don’t need to eat break or rice or paste three times a days unless you’re looking to gain weight. Once a day is enough for most people looking to gain or maintain weight.

If you followed the first rule, you’re only getting carbs from unprocessed food sources. These would be the best:


  • Rice
  • Pasta
  • Bread
  • Potatoes
  • Quinoa
  • Oatmeal
Eat Good Fats

Fat doesn’t make you fat. Excess calories do.

So you can eat real butter, whole eggs and full-fat yogurt.

Because you’re going to lift heavy weights three times a week, and eat unprocessed foods most of the time.

So a little saturated and cholesterol is not going to cause cardiovascular disease.

You do not have to eat fat-free yogurt or split the yolk from the eggs. Low fat food is tasteless. Just go full-fat. It will keep you full longer.

Eat also omega-3 fatty food sources like fatty fish (salmon, tuna, mackerel, sardines, etc).
Drink Water

You sweat when you lift weights, especially once the weights get heavy. You need to drink water to get all the fluids back that you lost through sweating. And you need water for proper muscle recovery.

Dehydration from lack of drinking will cause headaches. The same kind of headaches that you get after a night drinking (alcohol dehydrates). Headaches make it harder to motivate yourself to train, to get your reps, and to progress. You need to drink.

How much water you need depends on how much you sweat, which depends on the season and where you live. If I train in Bangkok, Thailand during the summer, I’m going to sweat more and easily drink 3-4 bottles of water. But I’m probably only drinking a 3 liters a day when it’s winter in Belgium.

You don’t need all those sugary drinks. This is not long-endurance training. This is lifting weights. The workouts are short, and you’re spending most of the time resting between sets.

Just take a bottle of water to the gym. Sip on it during your workout. I usually drink about 1.5l during my workout (but I live mostly in Asia now where it’s hot most of the time).

Then start your day by drinking two big glasses of water. If you drink somewhat during the rest of your day, you should get about 3 liters a day which should be enough.
Don’t Chase Perfection

You don’t need to be perfect with your diet. 80% of your results will come from following the above rules.

Trying to chase 100% perfection will set you on failure. Because no-one can stick to that. You will deviate. Someone will present you cake. You won’t be able to eat right in certain situations.

The problem happens when you think that breaking the rules equals not getting results. A lot of people end up binging or giving up because of that. That’s stupid and unnecessary.

I eat burgers, pizza’s and cakes. Because I like it. I don’t feel terrible when I do. I just eat them infrequently, and go back to following the above nutrition rules right after that.

Have a treat once in a while. Just don’t do stupid stuff like all-you-can eat buffets. One cake, then done. One pizza, then done.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Should I Eat?

80% of your results will come from eating the right amount of calories, and getting enough protein. The rest is details.

However you do want to focus on quality foods so you get vitamins, minerals, fiber, etc. So you should eat mostly whole, unprocessed foods. Examples:


  • Meat, Poultry & Fish. Steaks, ground round, chicken breast, tuna, mackerel, …
  • Dairy. Whole eggs, cottage cheese, plain fat free yogurt, milk, …
  • Whole Grains. Oats, rice, quinoa, pasta, …
  • Healthy Fats. Olive oil, mixed nuts, fish oil, real butter, …
  • Fresh Fruits & Veggies. Spinach, broccoli, bananas, apples, oranges, …
What should I not eat?

Again, what matters most is how many calories you eat, and getting enough protein. If you want to avoid eating too many calories, watch out with processed foods. These foods are usually also poor in vitamins and fiber. Examples…


  • Packaged Snacks. Chips, cakes, cookies, crackers, sugar coated nuts, …
  • Processed Meats. Hot dogs, bologna, sausages, lunch meats, …
  • Calorie Beverages. Sodas, fruit juices, sugar alcohol, …
  • Pre-made Meals. Frozen meals, cans of ravioli, pizzas, …
  • Deep Fried Foods. French fries, fish sticks, fried seafood, …
  • Junk Food. Ice cream, Mc Donalds, kebab, …
  • And all that other crap like margarine, sugary breakfast cereals, …
Do I need to eat a meal every 3 hours?

No. It’s fine if you eat breakfast, lunch and dinner, with maybe one snack in the afternoon. It’s also fine if you don’t eat breakfast but do Intermittent Fasting. What matters most is that you eat sufficient calories per day, and get your daily protein.
Do I need to drink a protein shake post workout?

No. There’s nothing special in protein shakes. The whey is just dairy protein, similar to what you get from eating cheese/yoghurt or drinking milk. You do not need fast-digesting protein post workout for better muscle recovery. You can just eat a regular solid meal that consists of protein and carbs (meat and rice with vegetables for example). The only benefit of drinking protein shakes is that they’re fast to make and portable. Personally I just just go home post-workout and eat oats with milk, yoghurt and fruit.
What’s an example meal plan?

These could be what you’d eat on workout days:


  • Breakfast: eggs with veggies
  • Lunch: chicken salad
  • Snack: mixed nuts, banana
  • Post workout: oatmeal, apple, milk, yogurt
  • Dinner: steak, veggies, potatoes
Non-workout days would be a meal less. If you do Intermittent fasting like me, then it’s only three meals a day (although bigger ones most likely).

Obviously this diet represents some of my personal food preferences that are influenced by my upbringing. My girlfriend is Asian and would rather eat rice than potatoes. Since the best diet is the one you stick to, your “meal plan” should reflect your preferences. It makes no sense to eat like me or someone else when you don’t like half the food that person eats.
Should I eat less/more on workout days?

I do. I eat less on days I don’t workout than days I workout. Because I don’t eat a post-workout meal when I don’t workout. There’s also slightly less calories burned since no workout took place that day.

But you don’t have to think about this. There’s value to cycling calories. But 80% of your results will come from just getting the right amount of total calories, protein, and drinking enough water.
What should my grocery list look like?

Here’s a quick list:


  • Beef steaks – high protein
  • Chicken breast – high protein
  • Wild salmon – high protein, healthy fats
  • Whole eggs – protein and fats, good for breakfast
  • Full-fat yogurt – protein, good gut bacteria
  • Real butter – for cooking the meat
  • Olive Oil – extra virgin, good fats for veggies
  • Salt/pepper – for spicing things up, real salt
  • Mixed nuts – high protein/fat/fiber, easy snack
  • Broccoli – empty calorie, high fiber (alternate with cauliflower)
  • Spinach – empty calorie, high fiber (alternate with kale)
  • Potatoes – good carbs (alternate with sweet potatoes)
  • Oatmeal – good carbs, high fiber (great post-workout)
  • Berries – healthy stuff to mix with oatmeal (buy frozen)
  • Green tea – strong antioxidant, good to replace coffee




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Thursday, June 6, 2019

Things To Avoid When You’re Training Chest Muscles ! bodybuilding110

If you train in a big commercial gym, you’ve probably noticed Monday is National Bench Day. Everyone seems to be training their chest. Tuesday is often National Bench Day part 2 with more of the same.



But how do you train your chest efficiently for maximum growth? In this post I’ll explain you which mistakes you must avoid to build a bigger chest.


#1: Just Bench Pressing

Another very common mistake which is made on chest day is solely doing pressing movements. This could be a barbell bench press, incline barbell bench press, dumbbell press etc. The point is all of these movements are pretty much identical and aren’t really ‘testing’ or giving your chest a proper all-round workout.

Bench press is certainly an excellent exercise and there are many brilliant versions of it; however, they shouldn’t make up the entirety of your chest workout. If you’re lifting purely for strength, e.g. powerlifting, then you’re probably going to just be performing bench press – so it’s okay to not include isolation exercises. However, if you’re looking to build muscle mass then you should look at some other exercises.



✓ For example, by isolating your chest with exercises such as dumbbell flys or cable crossover, then you will be hitting your chest from different angles, activating more muscle fibres and thus allowing yourself to build more muscle.

#2: Neglecting Upper Chest

In order to build a full, aesthetic chest muscle, you need to work your entire chest. To do this, you need to concentrate on the upper and lower portions of your chest.


Simply put, you can put more emphasis on your upper chest by including incline movements into your chest routine. Likewise, to put more emphasis on your lower chest it would be beneficial to perform some decline work.

It’s important to note that you cannot isolate your upper and lower chest like you can isolate whole muscles. The visible chest muscle is just one muscle, although you can develop different portions of it by doing different exercises.

✓ Remember, just by including a few incline exercises for a few workouts, it won’t magically give you an amazing upper chest. It’s important to keep at it for a long period of time and keep your body fat relatively low to see the progress you have made.

✓ Furthermore, if you are performing incline exercises (for example,) and you’re performing them later on in your workout, then you are never going to be able to hit them with as much intensity. Instead, you should switch up your routine by sometimes hitting incline first when you have the most energy. This way you prevent your upper chest lagging behind!


#3: Overusing Machines

This is another common mistake which I see being made on a daily basis. For one reason or another, many lifters seem stuck to the machines in the gym. Don’t get me wrong, they have their uses, but they shouldn’t make up the majority of your workout. In fact, it should be quite the opposite.

I would stick to work with barbells and dumbbells, then implement in a one or two ‘machine’ movements such as a fly or hammer strength press.

✓ This way you are able to build up more of your stabiliser muscles – which are used when you lift free weights – but not when using a machine. Furthermore, you can hit your chest from different angles with free weights; however, machines are stuck in one arc, and one motion.

✓ One good use for machines is as a finisher, since you can easily do drop sets, or neurological overload sets, to completely fatigue your chest and totally finish it off. It’s easy to drop the weight and complete another set without faffing around taking weight off, or adding weight onto a bar.



#4: Form

The dreaded F-word. Form is important when it comes to any exercises or muscles group.

Given how popular chest day is, many people forget to leave their ego at the door when they enter the gym and decide to try and lift as much weight as they possibly can.

On bench press for example, you should use a weight that you are comfortable with for your working sets, gradually increasing the weight for progressive overload. If you are only performing half reps or need a spotter to help you with most of them, then you should lighten the weight.

✓ Read up on how to perform each exercise properly – for example: bench press form – and get someone to critique your form. You will thank yourself for it later.

✓ Jay Cutler once said ‘Work your muscles, not the weight’. This is very true, especially when it comes to training chest. You should concentrate on contracting your muscles rather than just moving the weight.
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