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How To Assess Your Squat

Guest Post By Rick Kaselj Creator of Muscle Imbalances Revealed

There is a good chance you have been doing the squat wrong for a long time.  The squat builds leg strength and shape but also it is important in saving those knees.  You want those knees to be happy so you can keep lifting for a long time.

Lets test to see if you are doing the squat all wrong.

Do this Test to See If You Are Getting the Most Out of Your Squat

Look in the mirror or have someone look at your squat.

Perform a bodyweight squat.

Look to see how far down your hips go.

Do your hips stay above your knees or do they dip down past your knees?

If your hips do not dip past your knees, you are not getting the most out of your squat and you are not helping strengthening knees and hips in order to protect your knees.

Lets chat about why letting your hips pass your knees is important.

Knee and Hip Strength Through Full Range

You want to build strengthen around the knee and hip through full range of motion.  If you are stopping, just above the knees, you are not building full strength in the hips and knees which leaves the knees exposed to injury when the hips pass the knees.  The hips pass the knees often when you are doing day to day things and working.

If you let the hips pass the knees, you strengthen the knees over a larger range of motion plus you work the hamstrings, hip flexors and gluteus maximus which all help in decreasing the stress on the knees and keeping the knees happy.

Testing Out the Squat to See if It will Help You

You can test out what I am talking about.

With your non-dominant hand, grab something very stable like a squat rack or door frame.  Lean back and move into a squat position.

With your dominant hand feel the muscles around your knee and hip area.

Do a few repetitions of the squat and make sure to see what is happening with your quadriceps, hamstrings, hip flexors and gluteus maximus.

Perform the squat to different heights.

Try a half squat.

Try a squat with your hips above your knees.

Try a squat with your knees in line with your hips.

Try a squat with your hips below your knees.

What happened to your knee and hip muscles at different depths?

Did you feel an increase in activation of the quadriceps, hamstrings, hip flexors and gluteus maximus when hips pass your knee?

If yes, keep reading on.

What Can You Do About it?

You have done the assessment, now it is time to do a few exercises that will help out.

Finger Squat

A finger squat is a bodyweight squat that will help you build strength around the knee and hip during greater range of motion.

Start in a squat foot position and place your palms together, in front of you.  Keep your arms straight and squat down to a point in which your fingers touch the ground while looking straight ahead.  When you touch the ground, return back to the starting position.

Performing the finger squat will force you to dip your hips below your knees so you strengthening at a greater range of motion of your knees and your hips.

You can do this as a warm-up to your leg program or you can do this at the end of your leg program as a recovery.

Front Squat Hip Dip

Adding a twist to the front bar squat.  For your first set, start off with a warm-up weight.  Perform the front squat and work on dipping those hips past knees on the bottom position.  I am not saying bring your seat to your heels, just dip them past.  You will feel how the squat changes when you do this.

Doing this with the front squat, based on where the bar is, it allows you to lean back more and activate your gluteus maximus muscles which is important for hip health but also knee health.

Wrapping Up

Test out your squat to see if you are going deep enough.  If you are not going deep enough, you are not strengthening your knees in order to prevent injuries and you are not strengthening the hips in order to keep them strong and decrease the strain on your knees.

Make sure to test out your squat depth and give the finger squat and front squat hip dip a go to help improve your squat depth in order to make your knees happy for the long haul.

Hears to getting strong and to happy knees.

Rick Kaselj, MS

 

Are You A Fitness Professional That Needs To Earn CECs and CEUs?
Take Rick’s Home Study Course “Muscle Imbalances Revealed – Assessment & Exercise”

Muscle Imbalances Revealed Review

by Mike Westerdal

The word ‘balance’ generally refers to an even distribution of weight or a state of equilibrium. Balance is something that most of us strive to achieve every day of our lives, in just about every aspect of our lives—especially when it comes to weight training and maintaining the health of our bodies. In contrast to balance, ‘imbalance’ is a state of being out of proportion or equilibrium. At the very least, being in a state of imbalance is frustrating and distracting.

In terms of strength training, the term imbalance is often used to refer to a muscle or body part that it is not functioning as well as it should be. When an injury occurs or a system is not working properly, it places the body into a state of imbalance because it is no longer in a state of equilibrium.

For example, a torn rotator cuff in the shoulder results in a state of imbalance because the injury inhibits you from performing many of the exercises and movements you would normally be performing.

For many of us, one of the biggest difficulties of being in a state of imbalance is identifying the cause or condition that placed us there in the first place. In other words, we know that we’re in a state of imbalance but we’re not entirely sure what happened to cause the condition of imbalance. And if you don’t know exactly what the problem is, there is no way you can figure out how to treat it.

This is precisely the reason Muscle Imbalances Revealed: Assessment and Exercise was developed. MIRA was developed by four well-known fitness pros—Nick Rosencutter, Anthony Mychal, John Izzo and Rick Kaselj—who say that the program offers a “complete guide of assessments and exercises to help pin point problems and fix dysfunction in order to bust through fitness plateaus and get faster results.

Unlike most programs, MIRA takes a different approach in that it is almost entirely presented in a series of 12 video presentations that can either be streamed or downloaded for later viewing.

The overall MIRA program blends proper training and proper soft tissue work to enhance the speed at which people recover from injuries.

The first video is entitled Muscle Imbalances and the Performance Client: Assessments and Exercise Progressions to Improve Performance and Prevent Injury. This first one—as well as the next two—is narrated by Nick. The first part of the video is focused on helping you assess your body and uncover the root of the problem that you may be facing.

He does an excellent job of walking you through the assessment process, teaching you how to understand the difference between various symptoms, which allows you to then determine the correct underlying cause. Next, he gets into the actual assessments that he uses to pinpoint problems. The ‘Thomas Test’ is one assessment that he uses. He provides step-by-step instructions that show exactly what you need to do to perform the assessment. Afterwards, he moves on to the exercises you can do to address the problem.

Assessment and Exercise for Athleticism is the title of the next video set. This one is narrated by Anthony Mychal. In this video, Anthony focuses on identifying and eliminating muscular imbalances that inhibit overall athleticism. The following presentation is headed up by John Izzo and is entitled Assessment and Exercise for Personal Training. John’s presentation focuses on Assessments for Optimal Health. This presentation is primarily geared towards personal trainers. Its purpose is to help them to help their clients to achieve their personal fitness goals.

Rick takes the lead in the next video presentation, which is called Assessment and Exercise for Injury Rehabilitation. This one of course emphasizes assessments to identify injuries, followed by exercises and movements to alleviate the problems. One presentation is focused on knee injuries and another targets the back.

The rest of the videos are very similar with each of the guys narrating the presentations that cover his particular areas of expertise. All of the presentations follow the same basic format, beginning with an introduction before moving on to the assessments and then the exercises. Each video includes a handy PDF outline that covers major points of the presentation. These are great for taking notes and following along.

Be forewarned though—MIRA is not for everyone. The program is really designed for persons who already have a working knowledge of the body and muscular systems.

MIRA is not set-up for the casual workout enthusiast. Overall, I think MIRA would be a wise investment for someone who is looking to improve his skills. The all-video presentation style could be a little cumbersome for some people but the quality of the program makes it well worthwhile.

Overall It’s A Great Home Study Course That Will Give You A Huge Competitive Advantage In Your Field While Providing Better Results For Your Clients

Muscle Imbalances Revealed – Assessment & Exercise

A few people asked if they could get a look into Assessment & Exercise, here are 6 clips from A&E, enjoy.

Before I get to the clips from Assessment & Exercise, John Izzo shares with you what he goes through in his presentation:

 

 

Component #1 – Assessment & Exercise for Performance with Nick Rosencutter / Length – 1:27:03

 

 

Component #2 – Assessment & Exercise for Athleticism with Anthony Mychal / Length – 1:35:01

 

 

 

Component #3 – Assessment and Exercise for Personal Training with John Izzo / Length – 1:10:14

 

 

 

Component #4 – Assessment and Exercise for Knee Injury Recovery with Rick Kaselj / Length – 40:29

 

Plus there is:

  • The VIP coaching call which we will be setting up
  • You can earn Continuing Education Credits (CECs or CEUs)
  • Additional presentation that I am going to do on Assessment & Exercise for Back Injury Recovery

Discover the Secret Assessment and Exercises to Help Bust Through Fitness Plateaus, Get Faster Results, Rapidly Recover from Injuries and Improve Performance Without Ever Leaving the Comfort of Your Own Home!
http://criticalbench.com/goto/MuscleImbalances 

Stage Ready Nutrition and Training Review

August 2, 2012 by  
Filed under Recent Posts, Reviews

Reviewed by Mike Westerdal

Preparation for a physique competition or a fitness photo session takes a special degree of commitment and effort that goes above and beyond the ordinary. Whether you’re up on a stage or in front of a lens your body needs to be as close to perfect as possible because even the slightest flaw will be magnified ten-fold and can mean the difference between success and failure.

Long-time fitness pro and natural bodybuilding expert Brian Cannone knows this fact well. Through his more than 20 years in the industry he’s developed a keen understanding of the subtle nuances in nutrition and training that shed fat, build lean muscle and result in a stage-perfect or photography-ready lean, muscular physique. Brian shares his secrets with us in his Stage Ready Nutrition and Training Guide. Let’s check it out see what Brian has to say.

For the majority of men, it can be an immense struggle just to get your body fat levels into the single digits. Most of us would be thrilled to achieve a body fat percentage of 8 or 9 percent. While that may be great for the average guy, if you’re considering getting in front of a camera or up on stage, that just won’t do. In fact, if you want to model or compete, you’ll need to target getting your body fat percentage down to between 2 to 6 percent.

If you’ve set your sights on this lofty goal, then Stage Ready Nutrition and Training might be just want you need. Brian has laid out a step-by-step plan that will guide you along the proper path to success. The 95-page book is divided into eight chapters, each of which covers a different aspect of the process.

Chapter one is focused on both mental preparation and planning. You might be tempted to skip this chapter but don’t, because it’s probably one of the most valuable parts of the book.  Being in the proper frame of mind is absolutely critical to achieving success in any endeavor—even more so when you’re goals take you far above and beyond the ordinary. Second, without proper planning you’re most likely going to fail. After all, if you don’t know what your destination is, how can you get there?

In the next chapter Brian covers the scientific basics behind fat loss. He says that the purpose here is to provide you with a detailed and accurate assessment of where you are at any given moment a simple way to instantly measure your progress at any time. This feedback/guidance system uses body fat analysis, a strength assessment and a fat-burning zone assessment to help you track your progress.

Chapter three is focused on getting super lean and shredded in as little time as possible. The most important rule here is to maintain a negative calorie balance in order to push your metabolism to use stored fat for energy. Everything in this chapter is built on this core principle and is designed to ramp up the capability of your metabolism to burn stored fat. Individual sections cover daily caloric intake, increasing your activity levels and proper supplementation.

In the following chapter, Brian shares his no-fail way to get the best results from your nutrition program. This is an excellent chapter because it shows you how to take the guess work out of the nutrition component of the fat-burning equation. The information here is invaluable to say the least because miscalculating the proper negative calorie target for you could mean the loss of valuable muscle mass or it could add weeks, or even months, to your timeline.

Chapters five and six or also focused on nutrition and metabolism. There is good information about maintenance calories and Brian includes some handy tables so you can do your own calculations. Afterwards, he moves on to discussions regarding protein, carbohydrate and fat intake, along with information about macronutrients. The chapter also includes a food guide and a sample meal plan.

Next, the guide moves into the training aspect of preparing for the stage or camera. Brian’s approach is a four-phase plan that is designed to transform your physique so that it’s stage-ready. The first three phases last three weeks each, with the final phase being the recovery component. The final chapter of the book will tell you everything you need to know about supplements that can help you achieve your goals.

Although Stage Ready Nutrition and Training Guide is designed for those persons with the very specific goal of preparing for a competition or career in front of the camera, it can still appeal to anyone that wants the look like they compete whether or not they actually do.  Just because you look like a high level bodybuilder or model does not mean that you have to compete.  It’s cool to know that you could if you wanted to though.

Click Here For 6 Insider Shortcuts To Getting A Stage Ready Body

 

 

 

 

Foods For Ripped Abs

July 18, 2012 by  
Filed under Recent Posts

As you might know by now, getting ripped abs is not all about working out like a mad person. Unless you truly keep an eye on your plate and eat a balanced diet that can work toward reaching your goal, you will be doing nothing more but to make things harder on you. Below you will discover a series of useful advice that should guide your way to a prosperous workout and reaching of your target: killer ripped abs.

 

Throw The Focus On the Whey

Insert more whey into your diet and you will get to build your muscle tissue more rapidly and at the same time manage to stimulate the oxidation of fatty acids. Thanks to the rich leucine content, whey will also help improve the synthesis of the protein in the muscles and it will decrease the breakdown rhythm of the same protein in the muscles. You will get rid of the unpleasant body fat at a lot faster rate while consuming a few grams of whey every day as compared to the results obtained while consuming the same amount of soy protein, according to a specialized study.   

 

Eat…A Lot!

It is also important to keep an eye on the amount of food you will be ingesting every day. There is a special Penn State University study focusing on the importance of eating the proper volume of food during every meal to get a fit body. The sensation of being full after a meal combined with the exact number of calories we have ingested during that meal can help researchers determine the following: which is the energy density of the foods we have eaten during a mean an which foods should we consume more often – the ones featuring low energy densities; also the emphasis needs to be out on those foods that contain a smaller number of calories, but which can give us the desired satiety sensation a lot faster. Fruits expect dried ones, broth soups, vegetables that are not starchy are just a few fine examples of foods that contain small energy densities.

 

Eat More Often

Also, eating more often is another technique that should help you get the ripped abs you’ve been dreaming of. Use your smart device to set alarms or your meals so you don’t skip any just because you forgot it was time to eat, eating also implies burning calories due to the special thermogenic effect that takes place. This means you will get to enjoy more time feeling full and not needing to eat again. If you will skip your meals you will be doing nothing more but causing overeating during your next meals.   

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Does More Muscle Equate to More Strength?

Guest Post by Elliott Hulse, CSCS author of The Grow Stronger Method

Contrary to what most people believe, more muscle does NOT equal more strength. Of course muscle plays a huge role in your body’s ability to produce force, but the muscle itself is only capable of producing tension though the nervous system.  If your nervous system can supply the muscle with enough “electricity” to overcome the resistance, you become stronger; regardless of muscle size.

In my living room at home we have a dial on the wall that allows us to adjust how much light the ceiling lamp produces. If we want the room to become brighter, we turn the dial up and the room becomes brighter. If we want the room to become dimmer, we turn the dial down and the room becomes dimmer.  We do NOT go and buy a larger sized light bulb when we want the room to become brighter.  Instead, we “turn up the dial” which provides more electricity though the wires and into the light bulb thereby increasing the intensity of light in the room.

This is exactly how your nervous system and muscles work together.  Think of your Central Nervous System as the dial on the wall. When you need more electricity delivered to the muscle, you need to “turn up the dial”.  When you turn up the dial, your Central Nervous System sends more “electricity” though your Peripheral Nervous System which acts like the electric wires in my living room walls.

When the increased electricity finally reaches your muscle, it “lights up” with powerful neurological electricity and produces force against a given resistance. In the same way that the light bulb lights up the room, your muscle “lights up” the resistance by overcoming it.  Now, this doesn’t mean that you can become your strongest without the gain of some muscle mass, or that you can become “The Worlds Strongest Man” without adding some bulk to your frame. But what it does mean is that you can teach your nervous system to produce more force (Grow Stronger) without growing much larger.

You might ask, “Elliott, why don’t you want more muscle?”

First, after years of bulking up and cutting down I had become sick and tired of the fluctuations. Buying a new wardrobe every year is not my idea of money well spent–besides, one of my least favorite places on Earth is the shopping mall.  Also, I’d like to continue competing in various strength sports. I still enjoy strongman training, power lifting and Olympic lifting. When I compete in one of the heavier weight classes, my height (5’9″) often becomes a limiting factor for me. It would be best to compete in a lighter, under 200 lbs weight class, and still be competitive. This requires that I don’t gain too much weight.

My final reason is you. I know there are several athletes and fitness enthusiasts who read my website and watch my videos who want to become stronger but don’t want to gain mass.  Athletes such as boxers, fighters, skateboarders,gymnasts, Olympic lifters, power lifters, swimmers, jumpers, sprinters, etc.–all need to be strong, but either have to stay within a weight class, or the extra bulk hinder s their sports performance.

With my new Grow Stronger Method you will become stronger and build leaner, more dense and functional muscle; rather than large, fluid-filled, bulky muscles. We make this happen is by focusing on training the nervous system and creating what’s called Myofibrillar Hypertrophy.

Click Here To Build Dense & Functional Muscle

Men, Sports, And High Testosterone

July 13, 2012 by  
Filed under Training

According to the American Diabetes Association, over 13 million men are suffering from low testosterone levels, with 9 out of 10 never seeking medical help. High testosterone levels are often times connected to a boost in ones muscle mass, as well as better memory and focus, more energy and libido. Unfortunately, many men are having problems reaching this hormonal balance that could provide them with all of these positive effects on their well-being. After reaching the age of 30, testosterone levels start to decrease by one percent on a yearly basis. Various organ malfunctions could trigger the drop in the T levels, hence leading to the impossibility to stimulate the brain properly and causing tiredness, depression, and lower libidos.

Sports Or Wood Chopping?

A recent study published in the “Evolution and Human Behavior” journal claims that spending one hour chopping trees can increase T levels by up to 48% no matter what your age might be and indifferent of your current health state. If you were to watch a soccer game on TV or a site that specializes in live streaming sports, your testosterone levels would only be increased by little over 30%. Nevertheless, the spiking in the T levels obtained by watching sports is anything but negligible, so if you don’t own an axe just yet, you could very well stick to watching your favorite soccer or football championships, or whatever sport you are a big fan of and obtain similar results. I recommend the istreamsport.com site as a quick, free, and reliable source of live sport streaming from championships and competitions all over the globe. You can check out hundreds of live sports events (football, soccer, basketball, baseball, rugby, cricket, tennis etc) in HD quality, as well as details on the time and place of the event. You also have the possibility to reunite with fellow sports enthusiasts with the help of the comment section and discuss your favorite goals with them.

 

Keep in mind competition and aggression which normally characterize sports are not the only factors influencing the levels of testosterone in men. According to ABC Science, Bolivian men part of Tsimane are highly influenced by the environment when it comes to their hormone levels. They need to cultivate the land to provide food for their families, and the spikes in their T levels boost their muscle performance, improving their wood chopping skills and thus helping them protect and cater to their loved ones.    

 

Review of the 7-Day Back Pain Cure

In all my years hanging around gyms around the world, I don’t think I have ever encountered a lifter who has not experienced a back injury at some point in his life. Fortunately, most back injuries amount to no more than a few days of stiff muscles requiring a few days of rest. But sometimes, back injuries can be extremely painful, cause long-term problems and difficulties, and even be downright debilitating.

Unfortunately, when faced with a back injury or back pain, most of us have no idea how to correctly manage the situation. The majority of us tend to try and ‘work through the pain’ hoping it will just go away on its own. But depending on the type of injury or scope of pain, this can absolutely be the wrong approach, even resulting in the worsening of the condition. Given the fact that the back plays a central role in nearly every move our body makes, this cannot just be ‘problematic’ but it has the potential to bring our physically active lives to a painful, screeching halt.

However, one man—Jesse Cannone—appears to have hit upon a simple solution to alleviate back pain once and for all. He shares that solution with us in his latest work, “The 7-Day Back Pain Cure.” And the best part is that Jesse says that his methods can eliminate back pain without doctors, dangerous drugs or costly surgeries. Let’s take a look and see what he has to say about back pain and what we can do about it.

First, I’ll start by saying that this is an extensive volume that includes a great deal of information, so don’t expect to casually flip through the book and be on your way. I will say that Jesse presents a well-written, nicely organized book that can most likely help just about anyone alleviate most types of back pain. The more than 280-page book is divided into three sections:

I) The Hidden Causes of Back Pain;

II) Solutions for a Pain-Free Life; and

III) Pain Relief Action Plan. The strategies presented here are designed to address: lower back pain; mid- or upper-back pain; neck pain; Fibromyalgia; herniated or bulging discs; or just about any other condition causing chronic back pain.

Jesse opens by explaining that his own experiences provided the motivation for developing the approach to avoiding and eliminating back pain he presents here. Through a serious of incidents and encounters he happened to come across a non-medical solution that finally eliminated his chronic back pain.

Afterwards, he launches into Part I, which is focused on the hidden causes of back pain. This section of the book is interesting because among other great topics, Jesse talks about how back pain is frequently a symptom caused by something else, seemingly unrelated. What this means is that more often than not, when most people attempt to eliminate back pain, they’re trying to treat the symptom, rather than the cause. And if you’re treating the symptom, not the root cause of the problem, the pain continues. Understanding what really causes back pain goes a long way in helping you eliminate it for good.

In Part II Jesse presents his non-medical solutions for avoiding and eliminating back pain. In these chapters he discusses the reason that many back pain treatments fail and then talks about things you can do keep your back pain-free. Some of the solutions he discusses include simple lifestyle changes, different non-medical therapies, and maintaining balance in all areas of your life. I particularly liked the information he provides about how simple nutritional changes can help you to avoid back pain.

The last section of the book–Part III–is where Jesse really gets into the meat of his program. Here he presents specific seven-day action plans that you can use to eliminate back pain from your life. This section is nicely organized with individual chapters devoted to action plans for specific back pain conditions. For example, there are chapters for lower- and upper-back pain, neck pain, herniated discs, scoliosis and more.

The action plans are not particularly difficult to follow. Each chapter includes handy tips and suggestions to help you along the way. He concludes this section by providing a nice list of recommended resources including books, therapies, supplies and more. I might ordinarily be skeptical of someone who claims to be able to help people to non-medically eliminate nearly any type of back pain, but Jesse really is an expert on the topic. He’s actually one of the leading back pain relief experts in the United States, so if your back is causing problems or you just want to  learn how to avoid back pain entirely, then you should definitely check out Jesse’s book.

Jesse is Running A Special Where He Is Giving This Book Away For Free.
Visit This Link For Details: http://criticalbench.com/goto/7DayBackPainCure

 

The 7 Habits of Effective Weight Loss

Have you ever looked at an overweight person, maybe even yourself, and thought, “That person just needs discipline.  If only they’d expend a little effort and self control they wouldn’t be fat anymore.”?

But why not?  We all know what it takes to lose weight–eat less and move more.  Why do so many of us find it so hard?  Why do we start with the greatest enthusiasm and the best of intentions only weeks later to throw in the towel?

In a word, habit.

The things we do over and over again are our habits.  Some are good and some are not.  It’s their consistency that both makes them a habit and gives them their power.

For most of us the reason we fail at losing weight is that the habits of poor eating and not enough exercise are stronger and more established than the new habit of good eating and exercise we are trying to establish.  And therein lies the first problem, we don’t acknowledge that it’s a habit we are trying to change or recognize the difficulty in doing so.

Which is by no means a suggestion that we shouldn’t try, just an acknowledgement that the issue is more involved than we might first assume.  If we are to be successful in any endeavor we have to be able to assess the entirety of our situation and develop a competent strategy for change.  Here is where THINK! and Lose Weight can help.

There are no new secrets to weight loss.  There is no magic wand, elixir or pill that can change the process, make it faster or less arduous.  Burning more calories than you consume on a consistent basis is the only way to lose weight.  It is to the marketer’s and charlatan’s advantage that the issue is made more complicated than it needs to be.

However, within the rubric of “eat less do more” a surer path to effective weight loss can be found.  This is the path of effective strategies, of understanding why you eat too much, of destructive habits and how to convert them into constructive ones.  This is the path laid out in THINK! and Lose Weight: the 7 Habits of Effective Weight Loss.

Along the way you will learn the habit of success, a habit that can be applied to any endeavor  and with great reward.

Each chapter focuses on one habit and how acquiring that habit is essential to successful weight loss.  Beyond the habits are several appendices with real-life strategies for organizing your exercise and diet and bringing them into compliance with not only your weight loss needs but your lifestyle as well.

So, while the formula for weight loss is the same it’s always been–eat less and do more–THINK! and Lose Weight offers strategies designed to help you effectively change your life, to make weight loss a consistent part of your lifestyle and ensure your continued success.

Habits Can Be Changed Quickly – Here’s How

20 Dumbest Things Ever Said By Bodybuilders

Guest Post By IFBB Pro Ben Pakulski of www.HypertrophyMAX.com

1) Chicken, egg whites, rice, and rice cakes ONLY…..If you want to get shredded.

PLEASE DO NOT do this! Your body needs micro nutrients and vitamins.  I know of so many aspiring bodybuilders and people that just want to better their physique that hire people who tell them to follow this diet. FIRE THEM!

2) Fats make you fat.

Fats are essential for countless essential body processes. All fats are good (trans fats excluded) in some proper ratio. Rotate your fat sources and watch your libido and test levels skyrocket. I’m just saying…

3) You’ve gotta lift heavy to grow

Cmon people! If you’ve ever read anything I’ve written you know this is not true. You’ve got to lift properly, and maximize tension to grow! Don’t worry, its easier than it sounds once you get it.

4) A calorie is a calorie (all calories are created equal)

Sounds like meathead math to me! Even when trying to get as big as possible, the WORST thing you can do is eat indiscriminately. This will set you up for insulin resistance and LESS muscle growth. I can’t believe all the kids brainwashed into thinking pop tarts are okay!

5) I’m trying to work my “tie ins”

I still laugh when I read this. J WTH is a “tie in” There is NO SUCH THING people. A muscle is a muscle, and its structure is what it is. Where two muscles tie together is simply where two muscles tie together. You CANT train that. You can certainly train a muscles ENTIRE length, but not the space between two muscles.

6) I’m training to stretch my fascia.

Ummm, FASCIA DOES NOT STRETCH! 100% proven fact that fascia has the tensile strength of STEEL. It may expand, much like muscle does when it gets warm, and become more pliable, but as soon as it cools its right back to where it started. Fascia grows in much the same way muscle does. You may break fascial adhesions which gives the illusion of expansion or greater range (this is a great thing!) but unfortunately its not stretching to allow for muscle growth peeps. Volumize your muscle via training and fascia will see a need to adapt and expand or grow.

7) Narrow grip T-Bar rows work my inner back

A-mazing! NO-IT-DOES-NOT! Narrow grip on back simply impedes ranges and forces you to use greater internal rotation of the shoulder joint (rotator muscles)

8) I don’t want to “overtrain”

Listen, an hour or two 5 days a week IS NOT overtraining…EVER…PERIOD. Unless you don’t eat, and don’t sleep…in which case overtraining is the least of your worries.

9) Low intensity cardio is best for fat burning

Hopefully, by now, most of you know that this is a big load of BS and that low intensity cardio does in fact burn a greater percentage of overall fat WHILE doing the exercise but does NOTHING for your BMR aka calorie burning for the rest of the day.

10) Fasted cardio burns more fat

NOPE! Never been proven. Ever. In fact, it has been showen that cardio(or any exercise for that matter) done after consuming calories has a greater thermogenic effect.
(more calories burned)

11) Preacher curls work my lower bicep

Oh boy! Weve ALL done this at some point. Myself included. But thankfully I know better now. As much as it would nice to work my lower bicep or lengthen my bicep, preacher curls do not do this, and either do any exercises. They may overload the lower portion of the strength curve, thereby making you stronger in that part of the range giving you the misconception that youre lengthening your bicep. In reality, youre just getting overall thickness to your bicep.

12) Close grip bench works my inner chest

Or ANY exercise for that matter…you CAN NOT work your “inner chest”. I actually had a fight with another pro about this. To improve development of your inner chest it is simply necessary to fully shorten your pec muscles. Much like a bicep curl “for peak” forces your muscle to be fully shortened and thereby grow upward, same idea for inner chest.

13) I must touch the floor on stiff leg deadlift for a full range and maximum stretch in my hammies.

Cool you can touch your toes. That doesn’t mean that youre getting a greater range in your hamstrings. It often means that youre achieving a greater range via putting your spine in a compromised position. Go only as far as your hamstrings flexibility will allow.

14) When you stop working out, does all that muscle turn to fat?

Clearly every bodybuilder that stops training will turn to a massive fat slob. All that muscle has to go somewhere right? Well, no. Fat and muscle are two completely different entities. Its like turning chicken breasts into donuts. Although it might be cool, I don’t see it being likely anytime soon unless you can track down Doc Brown and his flying Delorean.

15) Saturated fat is bad

Actually, saturated fat has never been shown to have any correlation with all the negative things the media might have you believe. Heart disease etc. When it does become bad is when its combined with sugars! Saturated fat on its own actually have many great positive benefits in the body. Hormone production etc.

16) Taking glutamine and Whey protein together is bad. They compete.

In fact they can help with increased protein synthesis when combined.In fact glutamine improves immune function and immune function is an indicator of strength. Weak immune system = weak muscles.

17) I’m going to diet and lose bodyfat before I start weight training

Ok, maybe not said by a lot of bodybuilders, but I still here this idiocy all the time.  Listen people, Weight training is THE best way to lose body fat and change composition.  Vinny and I can take ANY physique to 10% body fat with weights and diet alone!

18) Can I get a lift off?

If somebody says this before they start, walk away! If you cant lift it on your own, you have no business lifting that weight. The only exception is some crappy old shoulder and incline presses that make you reach 4 feet behind your head to grab the bar.  In such cases I remove #18 😉

19) Creatine causes cramping and muscle tears.

Nothing even close to that has ever been shown, but the media loves to tell stories that sensationalize everything that they put out.

20) I just can’t build my triceps (insert YOUR lagging bodypart here).

YES you can. You just need to learn HOW to do things properly. They might never be the best in the world, but you can bring up any lagging bodypart to match the rest of your body with knowledge of proper execution.


http://criticalbench.com/goto/HypertrophyMAX

Click the link above for Colossal Gains In Size & Strength

Supersize Your Strength Review

Andy Bolton is an English powerlifting and strongman legend. He was the first guy to deadlift one thousand pounds in a powerlifting competition. Andy won his first competition at the age of 21 and just kept going from there, never looking back. He is the current World Powerlifting Organization world record holder (2,806 pounds) and holds the WPO world records in squat (1,213 pounds) and deadlift (1,009 pounds). His best competition bench press is a whopping 755 pounds.

In his latest work, Super Size Your Strength, Andy teams up with fellow powerlifter Elliot Newman to share their insiders’ secrets for driving your squat, bench press and deadlift to new, amazingly powerful highs. Let’s take a look and see what they have to say.

Supersize Your Strength is a 16-week training program to build raw/unequipped strength. In other words, if you wear knee wraps on your squats this program is suitable for you but if you wear squat and deadlift suits and bench shirts, then you need to look elsewhere.

The book is broken up into eight easy-to-read chapters that cover everything you need to know to follow the program and build your squat, bench press and deadlift. The sharp focus on these ‘big three’ exercises is one aspect of this book that I really like. If you’re a powerlifter this sharp focus makes perfect sense. If you’re not a powerlifter but just a guy who wants to get strong, this approach still makes sense because by focusing on the big three lifts, you’re building absolute strength from head to toe. In other words, Supersize Your Strength helps you build the foundation you need to grow all over your body. All of this is covered in chapter one.

The next chapter provides an overview of the complete 16-week program. The program is designed for a four-day training schedule and is designed to be followed exactly as-is, without modification. The only modification allowed is a switch to a 3-day switch schedule.

Chapter three covers the all-important warm up. If you expect to be lifting the kinds of weight these guys do, it is absolutely critical that you properly warm up—no exceptions. Extensive photographs are provided for each warm up exercise.

Chapter four outlines the 16-week training program. The guys include handy charts that cover each four-week period of the program. The number of exercises performed each day ranges from a low of four to a high of seven. Rest periods between the sets should be between 60 and 180 seconds, depending on the type of exercise you’re performing. You’ll need to read chapter five though first, because this is where all of the exercise movements are laid out for you. Again, like in chapter three, pictures demonstrate proper form.

The very few modifications that are allowed in the Supersize Your Strength program are covered in chapter six. For example, if a four-day cycle doesn’t work for you, it is acceptable to switch to a three-day split routine by combing certain exercises. The program includes 20 minutes of cardio per week. However, you are allowed to add some additional cardio time to this schedule. Keep in mind though that the goal

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of the program is to build super strength so it is important that you not spend too much time doing cardio.

Chapter seven is focused on things you can do to increase your strength gains. Specifically, this chapter highlights pre-, during- and post-workout nutrition, along with the all important recovery. I found the nutrition section of this chapter especially useful. The guys provide a lot of great information about carbs, protein, timing your nutritional intake and more. Remember that nutrition is the foundation of all gains in size and strength. You can lift until you can’t lift any more, but if you don’t have the proper nutritional foundation, the gains just won’t happen. The recovery section in chapter seven is also very well done.

The last chapter outlines your post-program strategy to maintain your gains.

Andy and Elliot also include four bonus books: Explode Your Squat; Explode Your Bench; Explode Your Deadlift; and Bigger Lifting Through Stronger Abs. Each of these volumes provide a nice range of tips and tricks to keep exploding your results beyond the 16-week Supersize Your Strength training program. All-in-all I’m happy to give the program a solid recommendation. Andy and Elliot obviously know what they are doing in terms of strength training and they do an excellent job of conveying their knowledge and wisdom to the reader.

Click Here To Supersize YOUR Strength!

Are Workout Apps Any Good?

June 20, 2012 by  
Filed under Articles

Today, there is an app for everything and everything, and if there isn’t, you can rest assured there is someone working on it as we speak. So are workout apps that teach you the latest training methods used by professional fitness instructors or heavy weight champions any good? Can you truly keep an eye on your lifestyle and boost your health while using a series of fitness apps you can find in all apps stores, no matter what OS you might be using? The answer is affirmative – and you can make your pick out of a sea of apps that can direct you toward the nearest gym from you, keep track of your diet or help you learn a new workout routine and even use a personal trainer.   

 

The Six Pack Abs App For Core Exercises

This app promises to provide users with 20 workout exercises that can boost their core and the main highlight of the program is that these exercises are displayed in HD video formats by lifelike avatars. This way, you will know exactly how to execute a new move you have never tried before and prevent any potential injuries. The app will also allow you to pick the preferred music that perfectly matches the intensity of your raining so you can be even more motivated to get moving. The free version of the app also enables users to submit their workouts to MyFitnessPal, while the paid version enables you to check out over 50 exercises to work your abs, plus several pre-installed apps like the Six Pack Junkie. You can find the app in both Google Play and iTunes App stores. While searching for the latest apps to play free blackjack online on or while visiting your favorite casino site on the web such as Vegas Winner thinking what game to play next, you can download the app and let it find the best deals for you in the area.   

 

The Sportsetter App Gives Your Monthly Passes

This app is free and it works as a subscription -based service that offers monthly passes to personal training workouts or gyms located nearby, as well as passes for various team sports and many more. No matter if you are interested in building your muscles while eliminating the stress of having to set up your gym passes, this app enables you to reach your exact goals. You have the chance to create your fitness profile on your app and even enjoy free membership for an entire month.  

Do THIS And You’ll Get Bigger, Stronger And Faster

Do THIS And You’ll Get Bigger, Stronger And Faster – Guaranteed.
By Andy Bolton author of Supersize your Strength

You may wonder what it is that I’m referring too. After-all, to guarantee that you’ll get BIGGER, STRONGER and FASTER is a pretty bold claim, right?

But it’s a claim I can back up with results.

My own results (multiple world records and titles).

My training partners results.

My clients results.

Now, what the hell am I talking about?

Good question.

Here’s your answer…

I’m talking about Training Program Design.

You see, the right training program can accelerate your gains in the gym faster than virtually anything else, but the wrong program can leave you without any gains for months (or even years) and can lead you down a road of injury and frustration.

The trouble is, it sounds easy – all you have to do is write an effective training program and you’ll achieve all your muscle-building and strength goals.

BUT – it’s not easy!

Not by a long way.

I see many guys hurt themselves and make little or no progress in the gym because they are clueless when it comes to training program design.

Some Bench Press 6 times a week.

Others only train the ‘mirror muscles’.

Others only train their upper body’s.

The list of mistakes goes on and on.

The most important things you need to get right if you want to get big and strong are:

– Good sleep

– Proper nutrition and hydration

– Lifting technique

– Training program design

Without a good training program you are doomed to failure. With a good training program it can be like removing the brakes, adding the Supercharger and saying “HELLO” to a whole new world of gains.

When I was starting out in the world of strength I found the best lifters I could and I studied what they did. At first I copied their programs and made decent gains.

Over the years I added my own unique flavors to the mix and made even better gains. Now I share my knowledge and wisdom (20+ years worth) with other lifters and athletes and they very often experience the best gains of their lives.

They add muscle.

They get stronger.

They get faster and build explosiveness.

Nice.

If you’d like me to help you to get bigger, stronger and faster, by providing you with a “kick-ass” training program, click the link below:

Supersize Your Strength

Weight Lifting on Vacation

June 14, 2012 by  
Filed under Uncategorized

Trips and vacation getaways can be among the greatest kind of nemesis to a good healthy lifestyle and routine workout. For many people, vacations and trips are used as excuse to loosen up, let go & throw away some good workout habits. Hotel dining, lounging, lazing about, some late night snacks, excessive use of alcohol, & disrupted sleep habits all contribute to vacations and trips which leave you much more exhausted than even before you left. In order for the trip to be relaxing and truly rejuvenating, it’s important you try to preserve a semblance of normalcy especially while you’re on a casino trip.

How to Stay Active

Most people find that incorporating some weightlifting on vacation routine workouts during the travel is a good way of maintaining a healthy lifestyle whilst still relaxing. As a matter of fact, since the body usually responds in a negative manner to drastic changes, one of the best way of rejuvenating and relaxing during your casino trip is continuing with that same exact weight lifting regimen while staying at the hotel. It may be a hassle to sneak in a workout while you’re on vacation, but if you want all of the action that a casino offers without skipping the gym you can check here for great reviews on mobile casino sites and apps. It may be difficult if you do not have any access to proper weight lifting workout space or equipment, but there certainly are some simple steps that you can follow or take to help you incorporate healthy exercise workouts into your plans.

It is likely that the casino hotel gym or the hotel room will not have all the necessary poundage which allow you smash your personal bests. However, there are some things which you can do while staying at the casino:

-Start moving the body. Body weight work outs are great, yet greatly underrated. Doesn’t matter if you use Tabata, volume, or density based work outs, most individuals underestimate level of shredded which they can reach using their body weight alone. Many of these can be done in a normal size hotel room, and get your blood pumping pretty quick.

-You do not need a fancy gym equipment so as to open your thoracic spine and/or fix your hips. Vacation time is actually the best time for doing this because it can promote relaxation, but still give you a bit of a workout.

 

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