There are a lot of topics to discuss when it comes to strength training and fitness. Everybody wants to know the big secret about what it takes to get ripped, what’s funny about it is that once they figure out this so called “secret” they’re disappointed that I didn’t give them some magic formula. Most guys that are ripped are on steroids. If someone looks like they take steroids it’s usually because they do.
The bodybuilding industry wants to hide this from people because they want to make money selling supplements. Now the guys that do get ripped typically don’t look very impressive with their shirts on. They only look good when they aren’t wearing a shirt. Whereas, it’s the opposite when someone looks big in clothes and then when they take off their shirt, they don’t look impressive at all. Continue reading How to get Ripped
The deadlift the best back builder of all time is what I am going to cover today. Deadlifts are one of the best barbell exercises a lifter can do. The reason for this is because deadlifts pack on muscle everywhere throughout the body. A set of heavy deadlifts can leave lifters sore for days. Out of the big 3 it is by far the most taxing exercise on the body. For those unaware the big 3 stands for squats, bench and deadlift. Deadlifts can be done conventional, stiff leg, snatch grip, from a deficit, sumo. Continue reading Deadlift 101
Gym Part 1:
The gym is where I do battle, I take no prisoners, I feel sorry for no one. I’m there to conquer and destroy. The barbells don’t care about my feelings, or what I’m thinking about, they’re just there. Barbells are like life, if they aren’t steered in the right direction someone will get hurt physically or mentally. The gym is what develops toughness, but for me it taught me that I had been living in a fantasy land. See the gym keeps a man honest.
If a man can bench 300lbs with a pause, then he really did that. The gym teaches people that with good discipline, reality can become appealing. People are scared to admit that they’re scared of reality. The first time I squatted 275 I thought I had accomplished something, but I saw Dan Green squat 750 then I realized I had a long way to go. Reality isn’t beautiful, it’s cold, cruel and remorseless. Continue reading The Gym Part 1
When trying to build the shoulders people often go wrong. Instead of progressively getting stronger in the overhead press they keep doing the same isolation movements that do nothing to help the shoulders grow. Don’t get me wrong front and side delt raises have their place in shoulder training. However, for bigger shoulders the goal should be to increase the 8 rep max for the overhead press. Now, this is a lot easier said than done.
After overhead pressing, the assistance work should be strictly to strengthen or grow the muscles that are holding the lifter back. For week overhead presses the cause is almost always weak shoulders. The other muscles that get worked in the overhead press are the traps, and the triceps. For the triceps, weighted dips usually solve this problem, also high rep tricep extensions work.
For the traps, power shrugs, and farmers walks will help them get stronger and grow. Continue reading Shoulder Building
Squatting daily seems to be getting very popular now thanks to Matt Perryman’s Squat Everyday book. But can it really be effective? Squatting daily can offer tremendous benefits if it’s done correctly. The first benefit is complete mastery of the lift. For most people besides strength technique is usually the issue. That’s what’s so great about daily squatting that the lifter can almost mindlessly squat. Perryman and John Broz even suggest the lifter to not fire himself up and to lift calmly. They both use the Russians and the Bulgarians as examples of why getting fired up is unnecessary. Continue reading Daily Squatting/High Frequency
As hard as it is to believe I still get questions all the time such as this one. Should women lift? The answer to that question is undoubtedly yes. For the women out there that are afraid that they will get bulky they simply need to know that no they will not. The only way a female lifter will get bulky like a male is if the woman is taking testosterone or other forms of anabolic steroids. The reason for this is because women don’t produce nearly as much testosterone as men do and for that reason alone there results will differ from a man’s results. Continue reading Should Women Lift
Everybody’s favorite lift the bench press, this morning I’m going to cover the pillars to a great bench press. Before I say anything though, my bench press philosophy and style are very similar to world record powerlifter Dan Green. The bench press is usually a lifters weakest lift other than a few people who have astronomical bench press numbers. This comes down to several factors
- First is that the upper body is generally weaker than the lower body
- 2nd is that most lifters have weak shoulders
- 3rd is that most lifters do not properly set up for the bench press
For most lifters, athletes, people in general their lower bodies are stronger than their upper bodies. If this is the case then their is nothing to worry about, the lower body should be stronger than the upper body. After all, no one wants to have chicken legs. The 2nd reason for a weak bench is because of weak shoulders. Luckily, shoulder training isn’t complicated at all. In fact, I would say to improve the bench there is only 1-2 shoulder exercises that need to frequently be performed. Continue reading Bench Press Basics
The main reason people go to the gym besides attracting the opposite sex is to build muscle, or so they say. People say they want to build muscle but the actions they take and their approach to muscle building doesn’t back up their words. For example, it can be seen at every gym the 135 lbs weakling who is doing curls, and triceps press downs. Or also the guy who does endless sets of reps with the same weight on the bench press… every week! What is it that these people are doing wrong? Well for starters they are doing the wrong exercises.
To maximally build muscle people need to get stronger over time in the 6-12 rep range. This rep range is optimal for putting on size. Now, I would recommend training in the 1-5 rep range as well to make sure strength is on par. I say this because if a lifter increases his 5rm (5 rep max) they are bound to increase their 8rm. Increasing strength in the 8rm is optimal for hard dense muscle. There are several ways to go about this. First, the lifter could train his main lift for sets of 3-5 @ 75-90% of their 1 rep max. After those sets are done the lifter could do a few back off sets of 8-20 reps for hypertrophy or just do traditional accessory work after the main lift in the 8-20 rep range. Continue reading How to Put on Muscle
Athletes need 3 key physical attributes to be great, speed, power, and strength. Without any of these 3 attributes the athlete can be limited. How can this be trained? Well for starters, athletes need to do something explosive every workout before heavy lifting. A good example would be box jumps, or broad jumps. If that is not an option med ball slams or throws would also be good. The point is these explosive movements prime the central nervous system for the heavy lifting. Continue reading How Athletes Should Be Training
Have you ever gone to the gym and noticed that only a select few seem to get results? If you have you aren’t the only one, and before everyone starts to say it’s because of steroids, gear, whatever people are calling it. They’re great lifters because they know what it takes to get results and they stick to it. There’s a reason powerlifters, and most bodybuilders stick to the same exercises it’s because those exercises work. Great powerlifters know that if they want to increase their squat, they need to squat more, with more frequency. In the gym not every exercise is created equal. A lot of russian weightlifters even squat 6 times per week. If something works do it, period. That’s how you get results, you do what works. Continue reading What Great Lifters Do