Thursday, May 25, 2017

Bodybuilding Weight Training – How Many Days A Week Should You Train?

how many days a week should you train
The most common question in bodybuilding training usually involves frequency of training. Busy people don’t have enough time. Young people have too much time. Some folks train two days per week. Others prefer 6 or 7 days. What is the optimum number of training days per week? It all depends on your goals!

If you’re just starting out

If you’re just starting out, start with 3 days a week and move up. Your body will tell you when more frequency is required. Recovery is actually MORE important than training or diet, and many people often overlook this fact and spend more time sick or sore than they do growing.

If you’re an intermediate bodybuilder

If you’ve been training for 2 to 5 years, then you’re ready for a nice split! There are two common ways to split up the week for 4-days-per-week training.
—Four day split
1. Chest and abs
2. Back & bis
3. Rest/cardio
4. Shoulders/tris
5. Legs
6. off
7. off
—Push/Pull split
1. Chest, shoulders, triceps,
2. Back, biceps, legs
3. rest/cardio
4. Chest, shoulders, triceps,
5. Back, biceps, legs
6. off
7. off

If you’re an advanced bodybuilder

Five to Six days per week is advantageous if you’re an advanced bodybuilder, or if you are a low-intensity trainer more concerned with cardiovascular health than making maximum muscle gains.
—Advanced Bodybuilders
More advanced bodybuilders often employ high-volume training, hitting some body parts two to three times per week.
—Low-Intensity Trainers
For the elderly or those just interested in being “toned”, six days per week of low-intensity exercise can be very effective. Three days of weights, and three days of cardio, alternating, is the most effective method for achieving both cardiovascular and muscle-gaining goals.

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Monday, May 22, 2017

Balanced Bodybuilding Training Guide To Get Big And Shredded!

balanced bodybuilding training
When you decided to hit the gym, you focused on the same two things everyone else does at first: getting big and benching a lot of weight. Most people think that means paying special attention to bodybuilding chest workouts. So they use the bench press, doing incline, decline and flat. They do chest dips and dumbbell raises, then add in some pushups for good measure. In the first couple of months this routine will produce some good results. After that, growth will usually slow down or stop altogether. Most people get frustrated and confused by this. Their main solution is to increase weight or reps randomly, hoping that something works. Neither of those things are the problem. The trouble is the focus. When you plateau like that, it’s because your focus has been on your bodybuilding chest workouts, and not on the other muscles that make building a great chest possible.

Your Shoulders Matter Too

Why bother talking about your shoulders? They get worked during your bodybuilding chest workouts, and you do exercises for them on other days. That’s all well and good, but there are three parts to the shoulder. If they don’t all get worked, then shoulder development becomes off balance. This means less power can come through your body during lifts. It’s important to train the anterior, posterior, and middle heads of your deltoids equally. Giving them that proper attention means more hard muscle fibers are available for recruitment on chest days.

Try Out The Triceps

Since the triceps actually make up the majority of our arm muscles, your chest workout is going to suffer if they aren’t as strong as possible. A lot of bodybuilders work the biceps hard and treat the triceps like a chore. If you want to give yourself every chance to have amazing bodybuilding chest workouts, then you can’t afford to think like everyone else. Being hardcore with triceps training every single time is a key to putting your chest above the rest.

Bring It All Together

A well-built chest is the first thing everyone notices about you, but it never comes just from banging out set after set of bench presses. Your triceps, shoulders, and other smaller muscles need to be carefully and intentionally trained. That way, your body develops equally and has more power to give when you work your chest. Constant technique improvement now means getting bigger gains later!

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Thursday, May 18, 2017

Bodybuilding Training Exercise You Cannot Skip

hyperextensions
I can’t do pull-ups, I’m just too big!

You’ve probably heard this excuse from one of your gym buddies in the past, as they try to explain why they’re limiting their outer back to the use of cable pulldowns. The truth is that they aren’t strong enough to pull themselves up, and they are using their body weight as an excuse. While it’s true that skinny lifters at 155 pounds can do pull-ups for days, there is no excuse for heavier trainers to toss out the movement. There’s no doubt that the mechanics of some exercises are going to change as you get heavier. However, for the most part, only a very minimal number of adjustments will need to be made to your training systems to keep making gains and getting the most utility out of these useful movements. Let’s examine some of the most commonly neglected exercises due to body weight.

Pull-Ups

It’s long been debated among heavy lifters as to when pull-ups for the back are no longer useful for the heavy bodybuilder. For proper perspective, let’s have a look at Arnold Schwarzenegger Classic winner Vic Martinez. He competes at 270 pounds and grows up to over 300 pounds in the off-season. Yet he still uses pull-ups with every workout all the way up to his pre-contest phase. Is it more challenging to pull your body weight when you weigh that much? Absolutely. However, Vic Martinez’ back is one of the best in the sport of bodybuilding. The proof is in the pudding!

Dips

If you’re complaining about your body weight while completing parallel bar or bench dips, you need to have your head examined. In fact, no matter what your bodyweight, you should be adding weight to your body after the first two sets to keep the progressive resistance factor intact.

Sissy Squats

This is one movement which is very useful for bodybuilders of all sizes. However, it can bring some additional risks as you move over 200 and closer to 300. Balance becomes an issue as your body takes on new proportions. You are going to want to be careful not to go too low on sissy squats as your body weight increases. This exercise is very difficult for lean men. If you’re 310 pounds and trying to balance, it can be very dangerous.

Chin-Ups

It’s commonly believed that as long as you can pull yourself up, this movement is safe. If you find more and more momentum is coming into play, you may want to opt for an exercise with a bit more controlled movement, such as barbell or dumbbell curls.

Ab Training & Hyperextensions

Even at your heaviest body weight, ab and lower back training should never change. Don’t use the excuse “I’ll just use diet for abs as the show nears”.

It is important that you don’t use a heavy body weight as an excuse for selling yourself short in the weight room. It’s sad when you see 215-pound bodybuilders complaining that they can no longer complete chins, as their back development will suffer. Train hard and use your weight gains to your advantage!

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Monday, May 15, 2017

Bodybuilder Guide To Back Training

back training
You know what the meaty back days entail. You walk into the weight room, and you crawl out. You spend an hour and a half clubbing the back with set after heavy set of deadlifts, rows, and other assorted painful movements. At the end of the day, your back is pumped, you don’t fit in your shirt, and you know tomorrow is going to being some soreness. This is the way you should always train, right?

Not exactly. There are going to be times when you don’t want to all-out destroy the back with heavy barbell and dumbbell movements. Maybe your central nervous system is a bit down, and you’re fighting off an illness. Maybe you’re letting a tweaked or overly sore area recover from what has been a bad week. Perhaps your joints are just starting to ache and you’re ready for a workout that doesn’t involve moving steel without guidance. Perhaps it is a week or two before an upcoming show, and your body fat levels are so low that your joints and brain just cannot handle the thought of deadlifting and rowing the bar today. Whatever your reasoning may be, there are going to be times when a pump is all you want, and all you need. When those circumstances arrive, look to a pumping routine like this one to fulfill your back training needs without leaving your joints in a tizzy!

Lat Pulldowns

Start with the granddaddy of safe movements for the back. Lat pulldowns deliver a path-guided stimulus package to the upper and outer lat muscles. You’re not going to get particularly thick using this movement, but you are going to deliver some hardness, width, and presence to the back muscles by using this movement.

Hammer Strength Pulldowns

Now, let’s finish off the upper back with some hammer strength pulldowns! You’ve already exhausted the outer back muscle with a pumping movement in the pulldowns, so it’s time to move to something a little heavier, with a lot less fluidity of motion. You’ll be pulling an actual weight this time, but the pre-defined arc of motion that the pulldown machine allows is even less than the cable pulldowns allowed. Just focus on moving the weight. Your stabilizer muscles don’t be recruited, and you won’t need to control anything. Just pull, baby!

Cable Rows

It’s time to move some of that blood from the outer back to the inner back. Have a seat, despite your uber-pumped back, and proceed to knock out four sets of 10 to 15 repetitions of slow, concentrated cable rows. Once you’ve completed these, consider your upper back to be completely finished for the day!

Hyperextension Machine

You’ve probably already noticed that this workout doesn’t deliver that heavy blast of lower back stimulation that you see with most deadlift days. That’s okay, because as you probably already know, your lower back can use the rest. Instead, opt for 3 to 5 sets of high volume and low weight hyperextensions. You have your other 48 or 50 workouts this year to pummel the low back with heavy metal thunder. Why not give it a break, and hit those slow-twitch muscle fibers today with some painfully slow hyperextensions?

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Thursday, May 11, 2017

Spring Training Guide For Bodybuilders

spring training
Well, spring is here and you wan to hit the beach and flaunt what you have. Well if you haven’t been going o the gym as much as you are meant to, you sill have time. However, I do hope that you won’t make a habit of last minute preparations. As scouts are normally told and as their motto clearly states, you should always be prepared. Let’s not dwell in the past, so what to do?

First of all you need to thoroughly look at your current state. If you didn’t overindulge in fast foods, then you can still flatten that tummy in a couple of days. My tummy flattens within two weeks of low carb intake and thorough exercise. But what woks for me might probably not work for everyone of cause. You can also start off by putting down that bottle of beer. Here are some tips that will make you look great in that bikini or in those shorts.

1. Work On Your Skin

You need to ensure that your skin looks great especially now that you’re planning to show off some skin. No matter how well toned your body is, ashy, dry, flaky skin just won’t cut it. You need to invest in some moisturizer as well as in some sun screen. Sun screen should actually be worn all year round because the sun’s UV rays always find a way to reach the earth’s surface even when it is not sunny.

2. Get A Good Tan

No matter how out of shape you are, a good tan will practically turn the tables round. You can get some tanning cream or do it the old fashion way.

3. Wear Beachwear That Improves Your Figure

It is common knowledge that horizontal stripes make you look wider while vertical stripes make you look more slender. Wear something that will accentuate your strong points and at the same time tone down your weak points. Wear something that you will be comfortable in and if you simply feel conscious in what you’re in chances are tat it will show. Just wear something comfortable and keep that for another day when you’re toned well.

4. Improve Your Posture

No matter how masculine you look, the fact that your back and shoulders are slouched will greatly tone down your overall look. There are people who look really great in terms of the muscles they have pumped but they have even lost competitions because of something as simple as their posture.

5. Drink Lots and Lots of Water

Water is quite essential for your body and is a must for you to drink plenty of it. Water is not only responsible for the regulation of temperature, toxicity but acts as a medium for reactions to take place as well as a reactor in many chemical reactions. Water gives your skin a healthy natural glow as it practically cleanses the body from the inside out. It will make your skin soft, smooth and supple.

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Monday, May 8, 2017

Bodybuilding Training Guide: 40-minute Back Day Blitz

In this world, time is the ultimate resource. You can always make more money, meet new friends, and find just about another resource through a combination of good luck and hard work. Time, however, is the one thing that is ultimately finite for all, and eventually, unfortunately, we will all run out of it! Barring all of this serious stuff, bodybuilding training is also affected in a major way by our time limitations. Sure, we have all seen the clips of professional bodybuilders training for two hours per day. Toss in time for cooking meals and taking showers, and you wonder how any of them have time for a job or social life! The truth is that many of these men don’t hold regular 40-hour per week jobs, which affords them the luxury of training for such a long time each day. For the rest of us, however, this might not be an option. So, we have to resort to short, fast, and effective training protocols which allow us maximum muscle group stimulation with minimal time devotion. Here is one such routine for back which allows one to hit all of the areas of the back with only 40 minutes of time.

Wide-grip Hammer Strength Pull-Ups

wide grip hammer strength pull ups
This movement is preferable for a quick back workout. Sure, standard cable pulldowns and body weight pull-ups are probably going to stimulate more muscle fibers. However, they will also require more time for breaks between sets. You only have 40 minutes, which equates to about 10 minutes per exercise. Since you’re aiming for 4 sets per exercise, you definitely need to move through the sets quickly. That is why these isolation movements are important for these quick movements.

Dumbbell Rows

dumbbell rows
It’s time to get to the meat and potatoes of your training day. This will be one of the two primary mass movements of this day. Keep the repetitions slow and precise, and limit your breaks to 90 seconds maximum. Rep range should be 12 to 15 per set. You want your upper lats to be flaring after this set. You should a Google search for “Joel Stubbs” if you need any help with the visual image of lat muscles that literally hang off the bone!

Cable Rowing

cable rowing
Sit down, grab the handle, and don’t let go until you’ve completed 50 repetitions! You can use a very moderate weight, and allow the weight to hang for a nice deep stretch as you rest. The entire set will take only 2 to 3 minutes, but your upper lats will be on fire when you are finished!

Rack Deadlifts

rack deadlifts
Hyperextensions may be easier and allow for a bit less rest between sets (one of the goals of this training day), but nothing builds up the beef of the back like deadlifts. Instead of spending 3 to 4 minutes recovering on the floor from each set of full-out deadlifts, opt for 90 seconds of rest following equally heavy (or heavier!) deadlifts with a much shorter range of motion thanks to the nature of the rack bringing the floor closer to your barbell.

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Thursday, May 4, 2017

Bodybuilding Workout: Proper Deadlifting Training Techniques

Without a doubt, the deadlift is one of the top three movements a bodybuilder can use to add mass to his physique. Not only does it train the back, but it adds overall mass to the entire frame. Proper deadlifting technique can lead to new gains in muscle and strength. Improper lifting, however, can lead to serious injury which can keep you out of the gym for months, or suffering form back pain for the rest of your life. It just takes one bad rep to change your days – forever. This is why deadlifting should be taken very seriously. Here are some tips you can follow to help make your deadlifting workouts safer and more productive.

proper deadlifting

Start right

You need to create a vertical line from the ground, starting with your shoulders and leading to your ankles. The bar should be in the middle. Your feet should be just a bit wider than your shoulders’ width apart, and the deadlift bar should be pressed up against your shins. You may want to be wearing sweat pants, or have your shins chalked up well. Proper deadlifting leaves your shins quite nicked up. If you’re allowing a gap there, you are leaving yourself open to injury and lifting less weight than you are capable of moving. Don’t sell yourself short – keep the bar pinned to your shins.

Initiating the lift

The legs, and not the back, are the muscle group which begins the deadlifting motion. Make your lift a graceful tug from the starting position. The only “jerk” involved here will be the guy doing the deadlifts, as you’ll be in your own lifting zone, oblivious to those around you. There is no need to yank the bar, as we see in some powerlifting meets or even Olympia competition. Most injuries that take place to the back during the deadlift occur during this initial jerking phase. Move the weight slowly and deliberately. If you have to pull violently, you are using too much weight. Remember, your goal as a bodybuilder isn’t to move 1000 pounds no the deadlift. Rather, it is to build the most impressive back. You cannot do that if you are injured.

Back straight

Never, ever allow your back to become rounded during the deadlift. This may allow you to use more weight, but it also exposes the ligament sin your back to risk of injury. This also includes the neck, which should remain in perfect alignment with your torso throughout the lift. Rounding the back and turning the head have cost many a good deadlifter the best years of his lifting career!

Leave the biceps at home

Well, don’t take this instruction literally. Rather, make a conscious effort to use the arms and hands as hooks. Your biceps and forearms shouldn’t be working hard to hold the weight. Rather, they should be innocent bystanders, minor tools for holding the barbell while your back does the vast majority of the work. If you want an arm workout, go find the dumbbells. If you want a complete back workout, stick with the barbells and letting your back do the work.

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Monday, May 1, 2017

Triple Shot Training Technique For Monster Mass!

triple shot training
The Triple Shot is a training technique which allows the bodybuilder to stimulate each muscle group from the three most important angles. It’s not a super-set, which is designed for fast blood loading. And it’s not a giant set, designed for complete muscle annihilation. Rather, the Triple Shot is a technique designed to isolate the three largest parts of a muscle group, then delivering the three most effective movements for hitting these areas. The goal, of course, is the most possible muscle group stimulation leading to growth. Let’s check out routines for some of your muscle groups.

Chest

  • Flat bench press, immediately followed by incline dumbbell flyes, immediately followed by decline bench press.
  • Keep the weight heavy enough to challenge you for 6 to 10 repetitions on all sets.

Back

  • Deadlifts, immediately followed by lat pulldowns, immediately followed by barbell rowing.
  • Train very heavy on the deadlifts, and then move to a more moderate weight which allows you to hit 10 to 14 repetitions on the other two movements.

Shoulders

  • Seated barbell presses using smith machine, immediately followed by bent-over dumbbell laterals, immediately followed by cable side raises.
  • After a very complete warm-up, train using sets of 10 to 12. Going too heavy can place your AC and RC joints at risk.

Thighs

  • Front barbell squats, immediately followed by seated leg press, immediately followed by hack squats.
  • Train moderately heavy on the front barbell squats, being very cognizant of the risks placed to the neck and shoulder joints from this awkward movements. This would place your repetition range in the 10 to 14 area. The leg press and hack squats can be heavier, in the 6 to 10 rep range, since you are provided safety from these machines.

Hamstrings

  • Lying leg curls, immediately followed by stiff-legged deadlifts, immediately followed by seated leg curls using Hammer Strength machine.
  • Focus on slow, painful and heavy repetitions which stimulate the muscle fibers. Don’t jerk or swing the weight, as this can lead to a greater risk of injury.

Calves

  • Smith machine calf raises, immediately followed by seated calf raises, immediately followed by leg press lockouts for calves.
  • Keep the repetitions very slow and deliberate. Calves don’t need a great deal of weight to grow, but they do require much focused repetitions where you flex the muscle at the start and stop of every rep.

Biceps

  • Standing biceps barbell curls, immediately followed by dumbbell preacher curls, immediately followed by standing alternate dumbbell curls.
  • It doesn’t mean a thing, if it has that swing! You can’t repeat that enough times. Keep your back straight, and your upper arms locked against your body during the curls to ensure your form is correct.

Triceps

  • Skull crushers, immediately followed by seated barbell triceps press behind head, immediately followed by cable pressdowns using rope or “V” handle.
  • Train through the pain, baby! Use sets of 5 to 10 repetitions.

Abdominals

  • Seated crunches, immediately followed by lying leg raises, immediately followed by roman chair sit-ups.
  • Train by the minute, not the repetition, completing 10 to 15 minutes of this combination of movements.

Obviously, you can swap out movements to fit your preferences and available equipment. The key is to try to find three movements of the compound (preferable) or isolation variety which hit as many fibers of the major muscle group as possible.

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Friday, April 28, 2017

Strength Training Without Weights

Everybody wanna be a bodybuilder, but don’t nobody want to lift no heavy weights!

This line was shouted by 8-time Mr. Olympia winner Ronnie Coleman in one of his bodybuilding training DVDs. His point was simple. Most people would love to possess a highly muscled physique, but most people don’t have the determination or fortitude to spend years in the gym moving the heavy weight required to attain such gains. His words are true. The use of heavy weights is required for achieving this goal. You cannot build new muscle mass without a caloric surplus and the movement of heavy weights in the range of 6 to 10 repetitions per set.

strength training without weights

So we can all agree that the use of weights – particularly free weights requiring stability and balance – is key to building muscle in the bodybuilding sense. But what about strength training? This area of lifting isn’t concerned with how you look or how big your muscles are. Rather, the focus of strength training is to improve the function of your body. The amount of resistance you can move from point A to point B is all that matters to those who train for strength. And the use of weights, while common and very useful is not a requirement for making strength gains. Yes, it requires a bit of imagination and creativity and plenty of hard work, but strength training without weights can be an effective means of getting stronger.

First, you will have to find a suitable replacement for the weights you have been using. You are currently surrounded by things that weigh a great deal. Your couch, your television, even your car all offer potential as resistance movement items. Your body doesn’t know that the large rock in the center of the garden in your back yard isn’t an Olympia barbell. You can conduct many of the same movements you would complete in the gym for strength training, using non-traditional items. In other words, strength training without weights is very possible – and often, actually preferable.

You’ll have to break out of your traditional “4 sets of 10 to 12 repetitions” mindset if you with to make strength gains while not following the traditional weight room path. Look at the World’s Strongest Man competitions. These athletes manage to pick up a single heavy object, move it a fixed distance, then drop it. And that’s it. One very long set of one very tedious and painful repetition. If you pick up a tree trunk and carry it 400 feet, will you make strength gains? Absolutely! If you flip a huge tire 75 times on your path around the parking lot, will you stimulate multiple muscle groups and force your body to adapt by growing stronger? Of course!

Strength training without weights offers a more natural approach to improving your body’s performance. It can be completed at any time, under any set of circumstances. You can use low or high repetitions, but the low variety (less than 6 movements or repetitions per set) is going to be more effective. Shock your body. Pick up any object and use it to push your tendons and muscles as never before. Use manual resistance against any wall or floor surface. If you are able to force your body to emulate the movements you would normally use in the gym to make strength gains, then you will see those same gains. Very often, you will even see greater gains, as your body has not become accustomed to these movements. If you’re going to attempt strength training without weights, you’ve got to be creative, hard working, and resilient. But in the end, the changes you see will be for the better!

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  • Tuesday, April 25, 2017

    Weight Training For Runners

    runners

    Weight training for runners can be very useful for improving muscular endurance and delivering better running performance on the track. It can also help the runner – often plagued with the curse of being eternally skinny – with a bit more muscle to show off!

    When is comes to designing a workout program that integrates standard running along with weight training for runners, many factors need to be taken into consideration.  You have to eat more, recovery better, and balance it all together if you wish to have the most success. It can be done, but you’re going to need to be more disciplined than ever before. Let’s look at a few of the factors you will need to consider.

    Caloric Concerns

    You’re going to need to eat more calories in order to give your body the fuel it needs to cover your running and weight lifting demands. Adding junk to your menu won’t suffice, however. The use of more slow-burning carbohydrates such as rice, beans, and pasta, along with some fast-burning protein sources such as chicken and whey powder is ideal.

    Create A Schedule

    Keeping your weight training and running on the same day is a recipe for failure. If you’re a bodybuilder who is just using running for cardio, then it can work fine at the conclusion of a weight training session or at the start of any day. The runner seeking to improve his levels of muscular strength and mass using weight training will not want to group them on the same day. Their workouts focus upon running, which is very demanding on the body. The simplest schedule will likely be one that involves running one day, and training with weights the next. You can rest every third day, or whenever you feel you need a rest day. You should choose at least one day per week to rest. Many runners choose Sunday.

    Recovery

    Pay close attention to the soreness you face as you begin combining the two activities. Weight training for runners can be quite a shock to the system. You may need more rest than you needed previously. Eight hours of sleep each night is essential!

    Watch The Joints

    Bodybuilders have joint pains and problems, and so do runners. When you add weight training to a runner’s routine, you get a situation where they face the rigors of both sports, which can be very tough on the joints. Imagine how sore your knees will be if you trained with heavy squats, sprints, and marathon training each week! Pay special attention to soreness and rest whenever necessary. Glucoasime and other supplements can go a long way in preventing injuries and deterioration of the joints.

    Weight training for runners is a great idea – as long as it is done correctly! It can be very easy to incur injuries when training in this manner, and many athletes will decide that either one or the other is the best option for them – but not both. If you can manage to combine the two, you should be very happy with the results you will see. Listen to your body, and always look for new ways to push yourself to new levels of physical achievement – in the weight room as well as on the running track!

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