If you have looked at anything to do with weight training, fitness, or exercise chances are you’ve noticed something. There are a million and one different opinions. Do this diet, do this program, take this supplement, drink this crazy drink and you will magically sprout muscles, lift cars, and have washboard abs. This drives me crazy when I see people trying to sell stuff that will do this. And I talk about it a lot on my YouTube channel.
If only right? So how do you know what to listen to? Well for starters, if something sounds too good to be true, chances are it is. Have you ever bought in to a miracle product? You saw the before and after pictures of others who had tried it and then after doing the program yourself found it didn’t work for you. Know why that is?
Because while those products may not be necessarily bad, it’s not the product that has gotten the results for those “success” stories. Those people who find success are ones who also work out, and change the way they eat in addition to the product.
Despite what marketers tell us, and advertisements show us, nothing can replace putting in the work. Clean eating, and exercise when stuck with for some time will do the trick every time.
So the next time you see a success story, just know you don’t have to shell out a ton of money for their product, because that’s not where success comes from.
When it comes to gaining muscle if you’ve got a fast metabolism it can be difficult to get enough calories in to gain muscle. Typically it has to hover in the 3,000–4,000 range (depending on your size).
Getting that amount of calories in clean calories is extremely hard, and often you have to eat so much you feel like throwing up.
That’s where protein powder comes in. It’s not just for building and repairing muscle that’s been broken down, it’s to aid in hitting our calorie intake. Adding in a couple scoops of protein in some milk twice a day can be the difference between gaining muscle and staying the same size. I talk about that a lot in my free course and how it’s important to keep track of your calories.
Think about it 500 calories a day is all it takes to gain one pound a week. That’s about 3 scoops of protein and 2 cups of milk. That’s it! You can have that before (or after) your breakfast, and before bed. For more on supplements, including whey protein and a few others you should be taking, check out the podcast above.
So if you are trying to increase your gains, chances are you are working on those arm muscles. I mean who doesn’t want to have some great guns popping out from those short sleeved shirts?
But are you going about it the wrong way? We all know about those popping biceps, but we may be missing out on the muscle that can drastically make our arm muscle bigger. The tricep muscle.
The tricep muscle is under-rated because the biceps get all the credit. Our tricep muscles actually do most of the functional work in our everyday life. So most of the movements that require us to use our arm muscles use the tricep muscle. Not only that but it makes up most of upper arm muscle. The tricep is considerably bigger than our bicep muscle.
By focusing on tricep workouts we can drastically increase our overall arm size. Throw in a couple tricep exercises each day with your other exercises for extra growth.
There are so many great tricep exercises too. From skull crushers, to pulldowns, to kickbacks.
There are so many different opinions on working out and how much is too much. There are those who say you need lots of rest, and minimal workouts, while others tout that you should rarely take a rest day.
The way our muscles grow is we stretch the muscle fibers and put them under enough tension so that our muscle fibers get tiny tears in them. Then during the resting phase, our muscles repair themselves and build new muscle fibers over the tear (kind of like a scab). This makes the muscle denser and stronger.
Now our bodies need about 72 hours for the torn and stretched muscles to heal.
Typically if you are doing a workout routine, you workout a different muscle group on each day of the week. Using this method though we typically hit each muscle group only once a week.
That is not enough for really great gains. You need to be working out muscle groups at least twice a week. To do so, double up your muscle groups. For instance instead of taking a shoulder day and then a leg day, combine the two. By doing this you can get all your muscle groups done in three days. For example: Day 1 — Chest and Triceps. Day 2 — Back and Biceps. Day 3 — Legs and Shoulders.
Then you can repeat those days. You are still getting 72 hours in between the muscle groups being worked out, and yet are getting in two workouts on that muscle group each week.
Do you have that one muscle group that you wish was just a little bit bigger? You’ve been working out that muscle group and yet it just doesn’t seem to be getting where you want it to go. There is a way to really make that particular muscle pop and it’s not as hard as you would think.
First off, figure out what muscle or muscle group you really want some extra emphasis on. Once you do, figure out two exercises that really target it, pick ones you hate, because typically the exercises we hate are the ones that stretch and grow us the most.
Now what you are going to do, is each day after your workout, go do these two exercises that target the specific muscle. Regardless of what you worked out that day, whether it was the same thing or something completely different.
When you do this, you are going to be working these muscles out much harder since it’s going to be every day, and since you are only hitting it with two exercises, you don’t have to worry about fatiguing the muscle too much. This is where the compound effect comes in to play. Small changes done repeatedly over time make huge results.
So if you are wanting to bring that one specific muscle group up in size, start doing this.
Walk in to any vitamin or supplement store and it can be overwhelming at the amount of products available. Do you need them? What even are half of them?
While there are a lot of hyped up products that you don’t need, there are a few tried and true ones you do.
For starters whey protein is a must if you are trying to gain muscle. Aim for a clean protein powder with no fillers. Typically protein powders that you find in grocery stores or superstores have a lot of fillers, get a clean protein from a reputable company that specializes in supplements.
Second you should be taking creatine. Creatine is something that is naturally occurring in our bodies. Our body creates creatine to release ATP. ATP is what gives us energy to function. So the more ATP we have the better we can perform in the gym.
Two other supplements that I recommend are fish oil and Glucosamine tablets. Lifting can put a lot of strain on the joints and our fluidity, which is why it’s so important to take these.
When it comes to the gym, there are a myriad of different things that can help you gain strength, and build muscles mass. But while there are many different options there are some that carry far more weight than others, and if they aren’t in your regular routine you are missing out.
The squat is without doubt one of the most important exercises in the gym. We often think of the squat as a leg workout, but in truth it is full body workout that can drastically increase your overall strength.
For starters, yes it does work your legs, but it also improves your balance, strengthens your core and back. Core strength is so important when it comes to our overall strength, and it’s about far more than simply having a good looking ab section.
But there are some things that you need to know going into the squat rack.
Your form needs to be on point. Don’t go in with sloppy form.
Don’t overload yourself. Often we want to look like we are crushing it in the gym and get caught up in over-loading the bar so that we look better. But take off some weight and make sure you are going very deep in your squat.
Make sure you keep your back straight. All the work is done with your legs, in the movement. Nothing else should move other than your legs. Your upper body is solid throughout the movement.
If you are trying to build your chest muscles but not seeing the results you are wanting, there could be several factors at play. First off, your chest muscle is broken up into three sections.
There is the upper section, the middle section, and the lower section. In order to add mass to each section just doing bench presses won’t cut it. To target the upper portion of the pec muscle start on some incline bench presses. Performing the standard press on an incline bench stresses the upper portion of the pectoral muscles thus, helping out your definition in that area.
If you then switch to the decline bench you are going to shift the focus on the lower pec muscle.
Everything is about balance when working out. Developing all areas, all muscles, and all muscle groups. Not only does this lead to better definition on the individual muscles, but it leads to better overall strength.
When it comes to your fitness, maybe you are struggling with staying on track and need some extra motivation, or maybe you want to take it to another level that you can’t on your own anymore. But personal training is so expensive. You can get personalized training at home customized content on a weekly basis delivered to you online.