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<div id="DPG" webReader="126.131470308"><div class="side-bar" webReader="-16.5731707317"><div class="c10"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/al-kavadlo-vital-stats.jpg"/></div><h3 class="article-title c11">Vital Stats</h3><a href="http://bodyspace.bodybuilding.com/AlKavadlo/" rel="nofollow" target="_blank" title="Bodyspace"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/bodyspace-social-icon.png" width="20" height="20" border="0" class="c12"/></a><a href="https://www.facebook.com/pages/AlKavadlocom-Were-working-out/205151489148" rel="nofollow" target="_blank" title="Facebook"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/facebook-social-icon.png" width="20" height="20" border="0" class="c13"/></a><a href="https://twitter.com/AlKavadlo" rel="nofollow" target="_blank" title="Twitter"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/twitter-social-icon.png" width="20" height="20" border="0" class="c13"/></a><a href="http://www.youtube.com/user/alkavadlo" rel="nofollow" target="_blank" title="YouTube"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/youtube-social-icon.png" width="20" height="20" border="0" class="c13"/></a><p><strong>Name:</strong> Al Kavadlo, CSCS<br /><strong>Location:</strong> New York, NY<br /><strong>Occupation:</strong> Trainer, author, lead instructor of Progressive Calisthenics Certification<br /><strong>Website:</strong> <a href="www.alkavadlo.com" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">alkavadlo.com</a></p></div><p>It's become a common cliché that bodyweight athletes don't have strong legs. Look at the comments on any YouTube clip showcasing advanced calisthenics, and you're bound to see someone hating on the lack of lower-body development. A number of coaches also insist that it's impossible to build a strong, powerful lower body without external weights.</p><p>Balderdash, I say! Bodyweight exercises alone can make you every bit as strong as can barbells and dumbbells. You just need to push yourself and get a little creative.</p><p>While newcomers need to spend some time honing their bodyweight squats and lunges, it usually doesn't take long for these basic exercises to max out on their strength benefits. Once this occurs, however, adding weight is not the only solution; you can continue to build strength by simply progressing to more difficult bodyweight exercises, like I discuss in my book <a href="http://www.dragondoor.com/b69/?apid=4e8cb1ea167b0" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Pushing The Limits</a>.</p><p>Ultimately, I recommend working up to single-leg movements like the <a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/pistol-perfect-one-legged-squats-and-beyond.html" target="_blank">pistol squat</a> to get the most out of calisthenics leg training. However, these types of advanced movements may remain out of reach until you've built more strength. As an intermediate step, jump training can add a challenge to your lower-body workouts without the need for weights or equipment. And even if you're well-versed in pistol squats, some of these simple exercises may offer you a new challenge and a welcomed change of pace.</p><p>
<h3 class="article-title c14">1 Jump Squat</h3>
</p><p>A jump squat is like a regular bodyweight squat, except instead of simply standing up at the top of your range of motion, you jump as high as you can, lifting your knees toward your chest at the top. You can do them jumping in place or up onto an object.</p><p>Though your legs obviously do most of the work, jump squats are a full-body exercise, so use your arms to generate momentum. Remember to stay light on your feet and avoid landing with your knees locked. Keep your joints relaxed and do your best to absorb the impact as gently as possible.</p><p>Try to go directly from one jump into the next, taking advantage of the elasticity of your muscles and their stretch reflex. If you're not able to do this at first, however, just reset and take a few seconds between reps as needed.</p><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/jump-training-the-4-move-no-equipment-leg-workout-1.jpg" width="560" height="593" border="0"/><p>"Though your legs obviously do most of the work, jump squats are a full-body exercise, so use your arms to generate momentum."</p><p>
<h3 class="article-title c14">2 Broad Jump</h3>
</p><p>Another fun plyometric squat variant, the broad jump is essentially the same as the jump squat except you jump forward, not upward. You still want to lift your legs high as you jump, however; this will help you clear more distance. Leaving your legs dangling isn't as aerodynamic. You'll need a lot of space to practice broad jumps; I recommend a park or field.</p><p>Again, try to go from one rep right into the next, though feel free to take a few seconds between reps if you need to when starting out.</p><img class="float-right c15" src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/jump-training-the-4-move-no-equipment-leg-workout-2.jpg" width="276" height="377" border="0"/><p>"Lunges are one of my favorite leg exercises, but like anything else, they need to be progressed once they cease to be a challenge."</p><p>
<h3 class="article-title c14">3 Jump Lunge</h3>
</p><p>Lunges are one of my favorite leg exercises, but like anything else, they need to be progressed once they cease to be a challenge.</p><p>Start out with a stationary jump lunge by lowering yourself down into a split squat and jumping up at the top, gently landing back into the bottom position with your knees bent. Do several in a row, and <em>then</em> switch legs.</p><p>When you get comfortable with those, the cycle lunge is a more advanced jump lunge worth trying. It starts out the same as the stationary jump lunge, but once you're in the air, you'll have to quickly switch your legs before landing. Continue to alternate legs with each rep, going from one right into the next. Feel free to swing your arms for momentum or keep them at your sides. It might take a little practice to land comfortably without losing your balance.</p><p>
<h3 class="article-title c14">4 Sprinting</h3>
</p><p>Though often overlooked, running is arguably the most natural and fundamental of all lower-body calisthenics exercises. Though most people associate running with long-distance cardio training, sprinting turns up the intensity to such a degree that the body's response is more like performing a heavy set of barbell squats than jogging a 10K. Yes, you can actually <a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/ask-the-muscle-prof-best-cardio-for-preserving-mass.html" target="_blank">build strength and muscle through sprinting</a>!</p><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/jump-training-the-4-move-no-equipment-leg-workout-3.jpg" width="560" height="353" border="0"/><p>"The body's response to sprinting is more like performing a heavy set of barbell squats than jogging a 10K."</p><p>Remember that when you sprint, both of your feet are often in the air at the same time, so sprinting is pretty much a form of jump training. You can do sprints for time or for distance, but either way, keep them brief and intense for the most strength benefits.</p><p>Here's a simple routine that can be done anytime to help you find your footing in jump training.</p><div id="meal-plan-table" webReader="-14.96812749"><p>Perform all exercises consecutively, with 1-2 minutes rest between each set.</p><ul><li class="rowBgColor c17"><span class="mpt-images"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/649/Male/t/649_1.jpg" alt="Warm-Up" width="53" height="53"/><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/649/Male/t/649_2.jpg" alt="Warm-Up" width="53" height="53"/></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong>Warm-Up</strong><br />Light jogging or jumping jacks for around 5 minutes</span></li>
<li class="rowBorderColor c17"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('freehand-jump-squat')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/108/Female/t/108_1.jpg" alt="Jump Squat" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('freehand-jump-squat')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/108/Female/t/108_2.jpg" alt="Jump Squat" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('freehand-jump-squat')">Jump Squat</a></strong><br />2 sets of 10 reps</span></li>
<li class="rowBgColor c17"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('standing-long-jump')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/831/Male/t/831_1.jpg" alt="Broad Jump" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('standing-long-jump')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/831/Male/t/831_2.jpg" alt="Broad Jump" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('standing-long-jump')">Broad Jump</a></strong><br />2 sets of 5 reps</span></li>
<li class="rowBorderColor c17"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('scissors-jump')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/813/Female/t/813_1.jpg" alt="Jump Lunge" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('scissors-jump')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/813/Female/t/813_2.jpg" alt="Jump Lunge" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('scissors-jump')">Jump Lunge</a></strong><br />2 sets of 10 reps</span></li>
<li class="rowBgColor c17"><span class="mpt-images"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2012/sprints_115x53.jpg" alt="Sprints" width="115" height="53"/></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong>Sprints</strong><br />2 sets of 10 seconds</span></li>
</ul></div><p>There is no single strength building method that's guaranteed to work best for everybody. Weight training will forever have its place in strength and conditioning, but there will always be alternative options to help build athleticism outside of the traditional weight room setting. Bodyweight workouts are often the most practical means of getting a quick but effective workout when you've got a busy schedule and/or don't belong to a gym.</p><p>Give the workout above a shot. I promise it will leave your quads aching and your hamstrings hammered.</p><a href="http://www.dragondoor.com/b73/?apid=4e8cb1ea167b0" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/al-kavadlo-streetching-your-boundaries-book-banner.jpg" width="560" height="144" class="c18"/></a><br class="c19"/><h3 class="article-title">Recommended For You</h3><div class="c22" webReader="6.20408163265"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/pistol-perfect-one-legged-squats-and-beyond.html"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/pistol-squats-and-beyond-smallbox.jpg" alt="" width="200" height="114"/></a><div class="c21" webReader="8.5306122449"><h4 class="c20"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/pistol-perfect-one-legged-squats-and-beyond.html">Pistol Perfect: One-Legged Squats And Beyond</a></h4><p style="display: inline;" class="webReader-styled">
Pistol squats pop up all over the place, but that doesn't make this classic movement any easier. Commit, do the work, and let Al Kavadlo be your guide!</p></div></div><div class="c22" webReader="4.91048034934"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/bodyweight-bust-four-bodyweight-training-myths-debunked.html"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/4-bodyweight-myths-debunked-smallbox.jpg" alt="" width="200" height="114"/></a><div class="c21" webReader="6.04366812227"><h4 class="c20"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/bodyweight-bust-four-bodyweight-training-myths-debunked.html">Bodyweight Bust! Four Bodyweight Training Myths Debunked</a></h4><p style="display: inline;" class="webReader-styled">
Don't believe that high-level calisthenics are only for athletes who look a certain way. Everyone can benefit from the unique challenges that come with bodyweight training!</p></div></div><div class="c22" webReader="4.81463414634"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/ask-the-muscle-prof-best-cardio-for-preserving-mass.html"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/ask-the-muscle-prof-smallbox.jpg" alt="" width="200" height="114"/></a><div class="c21" webReader="6.19024390244"><h4 class="c20"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/ask-the-muscle-prof-best-cardio-for-preserving-mass.html">Ask The Muscle Prof: What's The Best Cardio For Preserving Mass?</a></h4><p style="display: inline;" class="webReader-styled">
You've heard the benefits of high-intensity cardio for weight loss, but you're concerned it'll cost you hard-earned muscle. Learn the truth!</p></div></div></div><div class="padded-content article-content mod-about-the-author" id="article-about-author" webReader="37.5957446809"><h4 class="article-section-header">About The Author</h4><div class="ata-left-column" webReader="6.91304347826"><div class="ata-author-name"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/al-kavadlo.html">Al Kavadlo, CSCS</a></div><div class="author-gradient-button"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/al-kavadlo.html">VIEW AUTHOR PAGE</a></div><p class="ata-author-summary">Al Kavadlo, CSCS is one of the world's leading experts in bodyweight strength training and calisthenics.</p></div><div class="ata-right-column"><div class="ata-author-image-frame"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/al-kavadlo.html"><img src="images/2013/writer-al-kavadlo-sig-new.jpg" alt=""/></a></div><div class="ata-view-all-articles-link"><ul class="bb-chevron-list bold-type"><li><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/al-kavadlo.html#articles" class="bold-type">View All Articles By This Author</a></li>
</ul></div></div></div>

Jump Training: The 4-Move No Equipment Leg Workout

 

It’s become a common cliché that bodyweight athletes don’t have strong legs. Look at the comments on any YouTube clip showcasing advanced calisthenics, and you’re bound to see someone hating on the lack of lower-body development. A number of coaches also insist that it’s impossible to build a strong, powerful lower body without external weights.

Balderdash, I say! Bodyweight exercises alone can make you every bit as strong as can barbells and dumbbells. You just need to push yourself and get a little creative.

While newcomers need to spend some time honing their bodyweight squats and lunges, it usually doesn’t take long for these basic exercises to max out on their strength benefits. Once this occurs, however, adding weight is not the only solution; you can continue to build strength by simply progressing to more difficult bodyweight exercises, like I discuss in my book Pushing The Limits.

Ultimately, I recommend working up to single-leg movements like the pistol squat to get the most out of calisthenics leg training. However, these types of advanced movements may remain out of reach until you’ve built more strength. As an intermediate step, jump training can add a challenge to your lower-body workouts without the need for weights or equipment. And even if you’re well-versed in pistol squats, some of these simple exercises may offer you a new challenge and a welcomed change of pace.

1 Jump Squat

A jump squat is like a regular bodyweight squat, except instead of simply standing up at the top of your range of motion, you jump as high as you can, lifting your knees toward your chest at the top. You can do them jumping in place or up onto an object.

Though your legs obviously do most of the work, jump squats are a full-body exercise, so use your arms to generate momentum. Remember to stay light on your feet and avoid landing with your knees locked. Keep your joints relaxed and do your best to absorb the impact as gently as possible.

Try to go directly from one jump into the next, taking advantage of the elasticity of your muscles and their stretch reflex. If you’re not able to do this at first, however, just reset and take a few seconds between reps as needed.

“Though your legs obviously do most of the work, jump squats are a full-body exercise, so use your arms to generate momentum.”

2 Broad Jump

Another fun plyometric squat variant, the broad jump is essentially the same as the jump squat except you jump forward, not upward. You still want to lift your legs high as you jump, however; this will help you clear more distance. Leaving your legs dangling isn’t as aerodynamic. You’ll need a lot of space to practice broad jumps; I recommend a park or field.

Again, try to go from one rep right into the next, though feel free to take a few seconds between reps if you need to when starting out.

“Lunges are one of my favorite leg exercises, but like anything else, they need to be progressed once they cease to be a challenge.”

3 Jump Lunge

Lunges are one of my favorite leg exercises, but like anything else, they need to be progressed once they cease to be a challenge.

Start out with a stationary jump lunge by lowering yourself down into a split squat and jumping up at the top, gently landing back into the bottom position with your knees bent. Do several in a row, and then switch legs.

When you get comfortable with those, the cycle lunge is a more advanced jump lunge worth trying. It starts out the same as the stationary jump lunge, but once you’re in the air, you’ll have to quickly switch your legs before landing. Continue to alternate legs with each rep, going from one right into the next. Feel free to swing your arms for momentum or keep them at your sides. It might take a little practice to land comfortably without losing your balance.

4 Sprinting

Though often overlooked, running is arguably the most natural and fundamental of all lower-body calisthenics exercises. Though most people associate running with long-distance cardio training, sprinting turns up the intensity to such a degree that the body’s response is more like performing a heavy set of barbell squats than jogging a 10K. Yes, you can actually build strength and muscle through sprinting!

“The body’s response to sprinting is more like performing a heavy set of barbell squats than jogging a 10K.”

Remember that when you sprint, both of your feet are often in the air at the same time, so sprinting is pretty much a form of jump training. You can do sprints for time or for distance, but either way, keep them brief and intense for the most strength benefits.

Here’s a simple routine that can be done anytime to help you find your footing in jump training.

Perform all exercises consecutively, with 1-2 minutes rest between each set.

  • Warm-UpWarm-Up Warm-Up
    Light jogging or jumping jacks for around 5 minutes
  • Jump Squat Jump Squat Jump Squat
    2 sets of 10 reps
  • Broad Jump Broad Jump Broad Jump
    2 sets of 5 reps
  • Jump Lunge Jump Lunge Jump Lunge
    2 sets of 10 reps
  • Sprints Sprints
    2 sets of 10 seconds

There is no single strength building method that’s guaranteed to work best for everybody. Weight training will forever have its place in strength and conditioning, but there will always be alternative options to help build athleticism outside of the traditional weight room setting. Bodyweight workouts are often the most practical means of getting a quick but effective workout when you’ve got a busy schedule and/or don’t belong to a gym.

Give the workout above a shot. I promise it will leave your quads aching and your hamstrings hammered.

Recommended For You

Pistol Perfect: One-Legged Squats And Beyond

Pistol squats pop up all over the place, but that doesn’t make this classic movement any easier. Commit, do the work, and let Al Kavadlo be your guide!

Bodyweight Bust! Four Bodyweight Training Myths Debunked

Don’t believe that high-level calisthenics are only for athletes who look a certain way. Everyone can benefit from the unique challenges that come with bodyweight training!

Ask The Muscle Prof: What’s The Best Cardio For Preserving Mass?

You’ve heard the benefits of high-intensity cardio for weight loss, but you’re concerned it’ll cost you hard-earned muscle. Learn the truth!

About The Author

Al Kavadlo, CSCS is one of the world’s leading experts in bodyweight strength training and calisthenics.

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Jump Training: The 4-Move No Equipment Leg Workout

Posted in Bodybuilding, Exercises, Weight loss, Weight TrainingComments Off on Jump Training: The 4-Move No Equipment Leg Workout

<div id="DPG" webReader="159.353786622"><div class="side-bar" webReader="-18"><div class="c11"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/abby-huot-stat-box.jpg"/></div><h3 class="article-title c12">Vital Stats</h3><a href="http://bodyspace.bodybuilding.com/Abster82/" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/bodyspace-social-icon.png" width="17" height="17" class="c13"/></a><a href="https://www.facebook.com/abbyhuot.fitness" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"></a><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/facebook-social-icon.png" width="17" height="17" class="c14"/><a href="https://twitter.com/AbbyHuotAthlete" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"></a><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/twitter-social-icon.png" width="17" height="17" class="c14"/><p><strong>Name:</strong> Abby Huot<br /><strong>Location:</strong> Minneapolis, MN<br /><strong>Education:</strong> St. Mary's University of Minnesota (2004)<br /><strong>Occupation:</strong> Athlete, writer, fitness model, bikini/figure competitor</p></div><p>Everybody, including celebrity athletes, has secrets. No, I'm not referring to scandalous dirt or shocking rumors about people in the fitness industry! (Let's leave that to reality TV, shall we?) I'm talking about a hidden cache of secrets which athletes keep hush-hush about how they look the way they do, where their strength comes from, or the secret sauce to their training.</p><p>Ever wonder about the close-kept training or eating methods of your favorite athletes and fitness models? Top athletes may hold these tips—which take years of crafting and honing—near and dear to their hearts, but Cellucor's ripped warriors peel back the curtain a little to let you peek into their methods for top physical and mental performance. (Just promise that you won't share a single word or a piano may mysteriously fall out of the sky.)</p><p>Heed the words of elite athletes Karina Baymiller, Colton Leonard, Jen Jewell, and Craig Capurso. Their secrets can make you stronger.</p><h3 class="article-title">Karina Baymiller <a href="http://bodyspace.bodybuilding.com/kbaymiller/"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/bodyspace-social-icon.png" width="17" height="17" class="c13"/></a><a href="https://www.facebook.com/kbaymiller" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"></a><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/facebook-social-icon.png" width="17" height="17" class="c14"/><a href="https://twitter.com/krbaymiller" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"></a><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/twitter-social-icon.png" width="17" height="17" class="c14"/><a href="http://www.5thvillage.me/u/kbaymiller/" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"></a><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/instagram-social-icon.png" width="17" height="17" class="c14"/><br /><span class="c15">Her Secret </span></h3><p>I secretly enjoy conditioning! If you know anything about me, you know that I love lifting heavy more than anything, but what you don't know is that I love conditioning work just as much.</p><p>I talk a lot of crap about cardio, and it's true, you wouldn't catch me dead on an elliptical or doing low-intensity, steady-state. But when it comes to cardio work that gets my heart pumping like crazy, I'm obsessed. Maybe it's the adrenaline junkie in me, but I can't get enough of sprints, barbell complexes, jump rope, plyometrics, kettlebell work, and even some short distance (2-3 mile) running.</p><p>I do conditioning work 2-3 times per week and give it major credit for helping me stay in shape all year long ... Just don't tell anyone! Winky face.</p><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/fitness-success-secrets-secret-techniques-from-elite-athletes-1b.jpg" width="560" height="536" border="0"/><p>I secretly enjoy conditioning! I talk a lot of crap about cardio, but when it comes to cardio work that gets my heart pumping like crazy, I'm obsessed.</p><h3 class="article-title">Colton Leonard <a href="http://bodyspace.bodybuilding.com/Weight_Room_Junkie/"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/bodyspace-social-icon.png" width="17" height="17" class="c13"/></a><a href="https://www.facebook.com/colton.leonard.94?viewer_id=0"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/facebook-social-icon.png" width="17" height="17" class="c14"/></a><a href="http://instagram.com/cellucorcolton#"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/instagram-social-icon.png" width="17" height="17" class="c14"/></a><br /><span class="c15">His Secret </span></h3><p>My secret? Use heavy weight and high reps to challenge your mental and physical strength, and take your training to the next level. One thing I have always incorporated as part of my strength program is repetition workouts. In strongman, not only do you need to possess the power to perform a lift at maximum intensity, but you often find that you need to do so repeatedly.</p><div class="side-ad" webReader="-15.29"><div class="c11"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/7-strongman-lifts-smallbox.jpg" width="170" height="97"/></div><h3 class="article-title c16"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/strong-in-7-7-strongman-lifts-for-the-non-strongman.html">7 Strongman Lifts For The Non-strongman</a></h3><p>You don't need to be a strongman competitor to use the lifts! These strongman moves and their variations can help you achieve your goals!</p><div class="c18"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/strong-in-7-7-strongman-lifts-for-the-non-strongman.html" class="bbButton primaryAction c17">Get Full-Body Strength</a></div><br /></div><p>For instance, we don't <em>just</em> load an Atlas stone; we have to load them either for maximum reps under time, or, at minimum, a five-stone series. You often find deadlift events in strongman, which also require you to perform a maximum number of reps under time. These events led me to start incorporating this type of lifting into my training.</p><p>Several times each month, I pick a lift or movement commonly found in competition. After warming up, I complete one all-out set with as many reps as possible. This type of training not only contributes to overall strength, size, and conditioning, but will test your mental fortitude as you approach failure and your body starts to scream for you to stop.</p><p>Here's the real trick: 2-3 times each month, pick a major movement, set the weight at approximately 70-75 percent of your max and, after properly warming up, perform one set of as many repetitions as you safely can in 60-90 seconds. Choose from these exercises to test your guts: deadlift, squat, clean and press, or T-bar row.</p><p>Write down your max reps and test yourself again down the road to track your progress. If this set does not leave you crawling away in pain and agony, you weren't trying hard enough!</p><h3 class="article-title">Jen Jewell <a href="http://bodyspace.bodybuilding.com/fitnessjewell/"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/bodyspace-social-icon.png" width="17" height="17" class="c13"/></a><a href="https://www.facebook.com/fitnessjewelltraining" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"></a><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/facebook-social-icon.png" width="17" height="17" class="c14"/><a href="https://twitter.com/fitnessjewell" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"></a><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/twitter-social-icon.png" width="17" height="17" class="c14"/><a href="http://instagram.com/fitnessjewell" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"></a><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/instagram-social-icon.png" width="17" height="17" class="c14"/><br /><span class="c15">Her Secret </span></h3><p>Of all the fitness tips, diet tricks, and booty-sculpting workouts out there, my ultimate fitness secret is simple: Stop comparing yourself to others! Instead, constantly work on becoming your fittest and healthiest self. I always say that I'm a work in progress, en route to becoming my best self. Having adopted that mindset has been incredibly beneficial to my health, outlook, and self-confidence over the past couple of years.</p><img class="float-left c19" src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/fitness-success-secrets-secret-techniques-from-elite-athletes-2b.jpg" width="211" height="457" border="0"/><p>Sure, at first glance, it's easier said than done. With the onslaught of bikini-clad or underwear "selfies" that have seemingly taken over fitness social media, the physiques of others are right in your face when you log on to Facebook, Instagram, and so on. (It's a bikini booty free-for-all on my Facebook newsfeed!) While some of these posts from fit individuals can be inspiring and motivating, these types of updates are not always that simple.</p><p>Seeing others' progress, cellulite-free legs and buns, and solid six-pack abs can begin to take a toll on your own self-esteem. Inevitably, they compel you to constantly compare yourself to others and how your progress or fitness stacks up against theirs.</p><p>The moment I stopped comparing myself to others and focused on my own journey was pretty darn liberating. Charting your own progress from day one—whatever level of fitness <em>your</em> day one may be—and using that as your measuring stick can be extremely motivating. We are all in the gym working hard to set new personal records. Why not maintain that mindset when it comes to progress in your physique, as well?</p><p>Admire the physiques and hard work of your favorite "fitspos," but always keep in mind that the reflection in the mirror is your real competition. Be in competition with yourself, striving to become better each and every day. <em>That</em> is the true secret!</p><h3 class="article-title">Craig Capurso <a href="http://bodyspace.bodybuilding.com/craigcapurso/"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/bodyspace-social-icon.png" width="17" height="17" class="c13"/></a><a href="https://www.facebook.com/craigcapurso1" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"></a><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/facebook-social-icon.png" width="17" height="17" class="c14"/><a href="https://twitter.com/CraigCapurso" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"></a><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/twitter-social-icon.png" width="17" height="17" class="c14"/><a href="http://instagram.com/CRAIGCAPURSO#" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"></a><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/instagram-social-icon.png" width="17" height="17" class="c14"/><br /><span class="c15">His Secret </span></h3><p>When I'm trying to manipulate water for shoots, I take full advantage of infrared saunas. An infrared sauna is an effective tool for detoxifying the body and an aid for shedding excess subcutaneous water, yet few people utilize it. While traditional saunas help with water loss, the added benefit of infrared light penetrates the body tissue to help excrete toxins and bring out your musculature.</p><p>This has been a trick that I've used to come dialed into photo shoots and contests for years. It really makes a difference!</p><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/fitness-success-secrets-secret-techniques-from-elite-athletes-3.jpg" width="560" height="367" border="0"/><p>Infrared light penetrates the body tissue to help excrete toxins and bring out<br />your musculature.</p><h3 class="article-title">The Secret Is Out</h3><p>Embrace the valuable information that contributes to these athletes' success and see how it could fit into your own life and goals. Have you got a secret method few people know about? Tell us in the comments below ... unless you'd rather keep it secret.</p><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/store/cellucor/cellucor.htm"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/cellucor-banner.jpg" width="560" height="144" border="0" class="c20"/></a><br class="c21"/><h3 class="article-title">Recommended For You</h3><div class="c24" webReader="4.31363636364"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/ask-the-fitness-jewell-the-hidden-benefits-of-strength-training.html"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/ask-the-fitness-jewel-wheres-the-weight-loss-smallbox.jpg" alt="" width="200" height="114"/></a><div class="c23" webReader="5.30909090909"><h4 class="c22"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/ask-the-fitness-jewell-the-hidden-benefits-of-strength-training.html">Ask The Fitness Jewell: What Are The Hidden Benefits Of Strength Training?</a></h4><p style="display: inline;" class="webReader-styled">
You may know the feeling of looking in the mirror and seeing muscles peeking back at you. This magical tissue is good for more than just flexing.</p></div></div><div class="c24" webReader="5.2"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/6-tips-for-building-mental-resolve.html"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/6-tips-for-building-mental-resolve-smallbox.jpg" alt="" width="200" height="114"/></a><div class="c23" webReader="6.4"><h4 class="c22"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/6-tips-for-building-mental-resolve.html">6 Tips For Building Mental Resolve</a></h4><p style="display: inline;" class="webReader-styled">
Push through pain and adversity and let a strong mind fuel a strong body. Use these strategies to built strength where it matters most!</p></div></div><div class="c24" webReader="5.85972850679"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/a-game-4-traits-of-the-modern-alpha.html"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/4-traits-of-the-modern-alpha-smallbox.jpg" alt="" width="200" height="114"/></a><div class="c23" webReader="7.53393665158"><h4 class="c22"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/a-game-4-traits-of-the-modern-alpha.html">A-Game: 4 Traits Of The Modern Alpha</a></h4><p style="display: inline;" class="webReader-styled">
The word ''alpha'' gets thrown around a lot these days. Before you start slapping the label on yourself or anyone else, take this leadership course from the fittest man on Wall Street!</p></div></div></div><div class="padded-content article-content mod-about-the-author" id="article-about-author" webReader="42.1866666667"><h4 class="article-section-header">About The Author</h4><div class="ata-left-column" webReader="6.85714285714"><div class="ata-author-name"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/abby-huot.html">Abby Huot</a></div><div class="author-gradient-button"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/abby-huot.html">VIEW AUTHOR PAGE</a></div><p class="ata-author-summary">Abby has experienced a variety of events that led her to embrace an underdog role. She hopes to offer a different perspective on health and fitness.</p></div><div class="ata-right-column"><div class="ata-author-image-frame"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/abby-huot.html"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/writer-abby-huot-sig-new.jpg" alt=""/></a></div><div class="ata-view-all-articles-link"><ul class="bb-chevron-list bold-type"><li><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/abby-huot.html#articles" class="bold-type">View All Articles By This Author</a></li>
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Fitness Success Secrets: Secret Techniques From Elite Athletes

Everybody, including celebrity athletes, has secrets. No, I’m not referring to scandalous dirt or shocking rumors about people in the fitness industry! (Let’s leave that to reality TV, shall we?) I’m talking about a hidden cache of secrets which athletes keep hush-hush about how they look the way they do, where their strength comes from, or the secret sauce to their training.

Ever wonder about the close-kept training or eating methods of your favorite athletes and fitness models? Top athletes may hold these tips—which take years of crafting and honing—near and dear to their hearts, but Cellucor’s ripped warriors peel back the curtain a little to let you peek into their methods for top physical and mental performance. (Just promise that you won’t share a single word or a piano may mysteriously fall out of the sky.)

Heed the words of elite athletes Karina Baymiller, Colton Leonard, Jen Jewell, and Craig Capurso. Their secrets can make you stronger.

Karina Baymiller
Her Secret

I secretly enjoy conditioning! If you know anything about me, you know that I love lifting heavy more than anything, but what you don’t know is that I love conditioning work just as much.

I talk a lot of crap about cardio, and it’s true, you wouldn’t catch me dead on an elliptical or doing low-intensity, steady-state. But when it comes to cardio work that gets my heart pumping like crazy, I’m obsessed. Maybe it’s the adrenaline junkie in me, but I can’t get enough of sprints, barbell complexes, jump rope, plyometrics, kettlebell work, and even some short distance (2-3 mile) running.

I do conditioning work 2-3 times per week and give it major credit for helping me stay in shape all year long … Just don’t tell anyone! Winky face.

I secretly enjoy conditioning! I talk a lot of crap about cardio, but when it comes to cardio work that gets my heart pumping like crazy, I’m obsessed.

Colton Leonard
His Secret

My secret? Use heavy weight and high reps to challenge your mental and physical strength, and take your training to the next level. One thing I have always incorporated as part of my strength program is repetition workouts. In strongman, not only do you need to possess the power to perform a lift at maximum intensity, but you often find that you need to do so repeatedly.

7 Strongman Lifts For The Non-strongman

You don’t need to be a strongman competitor to use the lifts! These strongman moves and their variations can help you achieve your goals!

For instance, we don’t just load an Atlas stone; we have to load them either for maximum reps under time, or, at minimum, a five-stone series. You often find deadlift events in strongman, which also require you to perform a maximum number of reps under time. These events led me to start incorporating this type of lifting into my training.

Several times each month, I pick a lift or movement commonly found in competition. After warming up, I complete one all-out set with as many reps as possible. This type of training not only contributes to overall strength, size, and conditioning, but will test your mental fortitude as you approach failure and your body starts to scream for you to stop.

Here’s the real trick: 2-3 times each month, pick a major movement, set the weight at approximately 70-75 percent of your max and, after properly warming up, perform one set of as many repetitions as you safely can in 60-90 seconds. Choose from these exercises to test your guts: deadlift, squat, clean and press, or T-bar row.

Write down your max reps and test yourself again down the road to track your progress. If this set does not leave you crawling away in pain and agony, you weren’t trying hard enough!

Jen Jewell
Her Secret

Of all the fitness tips, diet tricks, and booty-sculpting workouts out there, my ultimate fitness secret is simple: Stop comparing yourself to others! Instead, constantly work on becoming your fittest and healthiest self. I always say that I’m a work in progress, en route to becoming my best self. Having adopted that mindset has been incredibly beneficial to my health, outlook, and self-confidence over the past couple of years.

Sure, at first glance, it’s easier said than done. With the onslaught of bikini-clad or underwear “selfies” that have seemingly taken over fitness social media, the physiques of others are right in your face when you log on to Facebook, Instagram, and so on. (It’s a bikini booty free-for-all on my Facebook newsfeed!) While some of these posts from fit individuals can be inspiring and motivating, these types of updates are not always that simple.

Seeing others’ progress, cellulite-free legs and buns, and solid six-pack abs can begin to take a toll on your own self-esteem. Inevitably, they compel you to constantly compare yourself to others and how your progress or fitness stacks up against theirs.

The moment I stopped comparing myself to others and focused on my own journey was pretty darn liberating. Charting your own progress from day one—whatever level of fitness your day one may be—and using that as your measuring stick can be extremely motivating. We are all in the gym working hard to set new personal records. Why not maintain that mindset when it comes to progress in your physique, as well?

Admire the physiques and hard work of your favorite “fitspos,” but always keep in mind that the reflection in the mirror is your real competition. Be in competition with yourself, striving to become better each and every day. That is the true secret!

Craig Capurso
His Secret

When I’m trying to manipulate water for shoots, I take full advantage of infrared saunas. An infrared sauna is an effective tool for detoxifying the body and an aid for shedding excess subcutaneous water, yet few people utilize it. While traditional saunas help with water loss, the added benefit of infrared light penetrates the body tissue to help excrete toxins and bring out your musculature.

This has been a trick that I’ve used to come dialed into photo shoots and contests for years. It really makes a difference!

Infrared light penetrates the body tissue to help excrete toxins and bring out
your musculature.

The Secret Is Out

Embrace the valuable information that contributes to these athletes’ success and see how it could fit into your own life and goals. Have you got a secret method few people know about? Tell us in the comments below … unless you’d rather keep it secret.


Recommended For You

Ask The Fitness Jewell: What Are The Hidden Benefits Of Strength Training?

You may know the feeling of looking in the mirror and seeing muscles peeking back at you. This magical tissue is good for more than just flexing.

6 Tips For Building Mental Resolve

Push through pain and adversity and let a strong mind fuel a strong body. Use these strategies to built strength where it matters most!

A-Game: 4 Traits Of The Modern Alpha

The word ”alpha” gets thrown around a lot these days. Before you start slapping the label on yourself or anyone else, take this leadership course from the fittest man on Wall Street!

About The Author

Abby has experienced a variety of events that led her to embrace an underdog role. She hopes to offer a different perspective on health and fitness.

Source:  

Fitness Success Secrets: Secret Techniques From Elite Athletes

Posted in Bodybuilding, Exercises, Nutrition, Weight lossComments Off on Fitness Success Secrets: Secret Techniques From Elite Athletes

<div id="DPG" webReader="113.884770672"><div class="side-bar" webReader="-19.6993464052"><div class="c11"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/dean-somerset-vital-stats-box.jpg"/></div><h3 class="article-title c12">Vital Stats</h3><a href="https://www.facebook.com/dean.somerset.9" rel="nofollow" target="_blank" title="Facebook"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/facebook-social-icon.png" class="c13"/></a><a href="https://twitter.com/deansomerset" rel="nofollow" target="_blank" title="Twitter"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/twitter-social-icon.png" class="c14"/></a><a href="http://www.youtube.com/user/somertyme23" rel="nofollow" target="_blank" title="YouTube"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/youtube-social-icon.png" class="c14"/></a><p><strong>Name:</strong> Dean Somerset<br /><strong>Occupation:</strong> Exercise physiologist; medical and rehabilitation coordinator for World Health Clubs.<br /><strong>Website:</strong> <a href="http://deansomerset.com/" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">deansomerset.com</a></p></div><p>It's easy to look at complex movements like dribbling a soccer ball, throwing a baseball, or handling a hockey puck and see how that took years to perfect. Athletes rehearse these movements endlessly, stick to the fundamentals, and trust that practice will improve execution in game situations. One day it finally does, but this happens over time, not overnight.</p><p>The same theory should apply to weight training. In a perfect world, we would all practice and progress safely, building the type of strength that allows us to handle heavy loads without injuries or negative compensation patterns.</p><p>Nevertheless, there's almost always a look of befuddlement on a trainee's face when I explain that they must first build a foundation with basic exercises. They simply don't believe the basics will increase their arm size, build chiseled abs, or sculpt jean-busting legs. They want quick results from extreme plans like they see on television.</p><p>It sounds simple, I'll admit, but my formula for success is this: commit to long-term training goals, and get the most out of the staple lifts like the push-up, dumbbell row, squat, and deadlift. These four are probably the most common exercises within weight training circles, and they're included in nearly all of the programs you'll see on this site.</p><p>Believe it or not, these exercises are enough to put you on the road to physique of your dreams, if you do them right. However, despite their popularity, they're very technical movements that can be easy to butcher.</p><p><img src="images/2014/four-fixes-for-fundamental-lifts_graphics-1.jpg" width="560" height="134"/></p><p>It's easy to attribute technique flaws to a lack of mobility, but here's what that excuse overlooks: Most exercises are corrective in nature and relatively easy to master, provided you take the time to progress through them and learn them properly.</p><p>Let's go upstream and solve these problems before they start! Here's what I see going wrong with the way most people perform the four fundamental lifts, and how you can perform them to get the most bang for your buck in the gym.</p><h3 class="article-title">Exercise 1 <br /></h3><p>Many push-up issues start when people focus on what muscle groups the push-up "works." If you're thinking all about chest, arms, and shoulders, you'll forget to keep the rest of the body tense and stable. This should be a full-body lift!</p><p>Make sure your hips and shoulders are lined up your arms and are in the best position to develop true pressing strength. This will help you build the most force at the bottom push-up position.</p><h4>Push-Up Fixes<br /><span class="exercise-note">Watch The Video - 02:06</span></h4><iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/RgL5HFny_kA" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe><h5>Push-up coaching points</h5><ul class="dpg-list"><li>Squeeze your glutes and abs to lock your hips to your core.</li>
<li>Keep your arm tight to the armpits.</li>
<li>Hit the ground with your chest before your head.</li>
</ul><br /><h3 class="article-title">Exercise 2 <br /></h3><p>Most issues dumbbell rows happen when the spine is held in a flexed and rounded-back position, rather than a neutral position. Improper spine positioning causes the shoulder blade to move up instead of down when the upper back is rounded, which forces the upper traps to work instead of the lats.</p><p>Focus on keeping a long, tight spine during the movement, and you should feel the burn directly below your shoulder blade, into to your tailbone, and through the lats.</p><h4>Breaking Down The Dumbbell Row<br /><span class="exercise-note">Watch The Video - 02:17</span></h4><iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/6J2H88q5hYw" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe><h5>Dumbbell row coaching points</h5><ul class="dpg-list"><li>Take a wider stance than you think you need.</li>
<li>Keep the spine long and straight with the chest up.</li>
<li>Let the shoulder blade do the work. The wrist and elbow follow the shoulder.</li>
</ul><br /><h3 class="article-title">Exercise 3 <br /></h3><p>Problematic squatters generally fall into two camps: those who are stiff and tight, and those who are mobile but have trouble controlling the movement. I discussed squatting issues before in a power panel with my fellow strength training coaches, but this never-ending battle is always worth discussing.</p><p>Squatting is very technical and involves many moving parts. The best plan: Don't jump into heavy weight too quickly. Start by doing bodyweight reps within your scope of control. Once you add weight, focus on getting comfortable at hitting depth and building a more effective range of motion.</p><p>Before you even think of going heavy, ensure that you can control the movement with your heels on the floor, hamstrings resting on your calves, and your torso positioned long and tall.</p><h4>Squat Fix: Low Mobility<br /><span class="exercise-note">Watch The Video - 05:12</span></h4><iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/KNm3m6Q7wMY" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe><h5>Squat coaching points</h5><ul class="dpg-list"><li>Keep your feet flat on the floor and press evenly throughout.</li>
<li>Create force through the hips to drive the movement.</li>
<li>Lean the torso forward as your hips move into the rep.</li>
<li>Keep the core tense without restricting airflow.</li>
<li>Keep the shoulders vertical over the middle of the foot.</li>
</ul><br /><h3 class="article-title">Exercise 4 <br /></h3><p>The deadlift is a skill-based movement that takes reps and consistent practice to improve. Most common deadlifting issues derive from the spine doing too much work instead of the hips, which are supposed to drive the movement. The spine should be a rigid lever that transfers force from the legs and hips up through the arms, thereby moving the weight.</p><p>Get your core and shoulders tight and keep the spine stiff to assist the movement. The deadlift isn't easy, but once you perfect your technique, you'd better believe it can be fun to lift a heavy weight off the ground.</p><h4>Deadlift Tutorial<br /><span class="exercise-note">Watch The Video - 05:23</span></h4><iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/PtrAiulTGWs" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe><h5>Deadlift coaching points</h5><ul class="dpg-list"><li>Keep the spine straight and drive the movement from your hips.</li>
<li>Set the bar close to your shins at the start of the movement and keep the shin vertical, without positioning the knee ahead of the bar.</li>
<li>Brace your abs, squeeze your arms down tight to your ribs, and stand tall without over-extending at lockout.</li>
</ul><br /><h3 class="article-title">Recommended For You</h3><div class="c17" webReader="6.01015228426"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/power-panel-4-deadlifting-cues-from-pro-coaches.html"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/deadlift-power-panel-smallbox.jpg" alt="" width="200" height="114"/></a><div class="c16" webReader="8.26395939086"><h4 class="c15"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/power-panel-4-deadlifting-cues-from-pro-coaches.html">Power Panel: 4 Deadlifting Cues From Pro Coaches!</a></h4><p style="display: inline;" class="webReader-styled">
Strength coaches Tony Gentilcore, Dean Somerset, Lee Boyce, and Todd Bumgardner offer their best deadlifting cues. Rip the barbell from the ground!</p></div></div><div class="c17" webReader="4.98305084746"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/5-re-mastered-deadlift-cues-to-a-better-deadlift.html"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/5-remastered-deadlift-clues-small.jpg" alt="" width="200" height="114"/></a><div class="c16" webReader="5.81355932203"><h4 class="c15"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/5-re-mastered-deadlift-cues-to-a-better-deadlift.html">Crush Your Deadlifts</a></h4><p style="display: inline;" class="webReader-styled">
Struggling with the deadlift? Follow these simple drills to master the ultimate strength-builder!</p></div></div><div class="c17" webReader="5.0375"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/less-time-better-results-escalating-density-training.html"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/escalating-density-training-smallbox.jpg" alt="" width="200" height="114"/></a><div class="c16" webReader="6.2"><h4 class="c15"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/less-time-better-results-escalating-density-training.html">Less Time, Better Results: Escalating Density Training</a></h4><p style="display: inline;" class="webReader-styled">
Have you ever had the dream of spending less time in the gym while achieving better results? It's time to free yourself from the cage that is your workout. Here's a better way to train!</p></div></div><br class="c18"/></div><div class="padded-content article-content mod-about-the-author" id="article-about-author" webReader="33.1219512195"><h4 class="article-section-header">About The Author</h4><div class="ata-left-column" webReader="4.85087719298"><div class="ata-author-name"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/other.htm">Contributing Writer</a></div><div class="author-gradient-button"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/other.htm">VIEW AUTHOR PAGE</a></div><p class="ata-author-summary">Check out these awesome articles by some of the best writers in the industry.</p></div><div class="ata-right-column"><div class="ata-author-image-frame"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/other.htm"><img src="images/2013/writer-contributing-writers-sig-new.jpg" alt=""/></a></div><div class="ata-view-all-articles-link"><ul class="bb-chevron-list bold-type"><li><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/other.htm#articles" class="bold-type">View All Articles By This Author</a></li>
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Start Small To Lift Big: How To Master 4 Fundamental Exercises

It’s easy to look at complex movements like dribbling a soccer ball, throwing a baseball, or handling a hockey puck and see how that took years to perfect. Athletes rehearse these movements endlessly, stick to the fundamentals, and trust that practice will improve execution in game situations. One day it finally does, but this happens over time, not overnight.

The same theory should apply to weight training. In a perfect world, we would all practice and progress safely, building the type of strength that allows us to handle heavy loads without injuries or negative compensation patterns.

Nevertheless, there’s almost always a look of befuddlement on a trainee’s face when I explain that they must first build a foundation with basic exercises. They simply don’t believe the basics will increase their arm size, build chiseled abs, or sculpt jean-busting legs. They want quick results from extreme plans like they see on television.

It sounds simple, I’ll admit, but my formula for success is this: commit to long-term training goals, and get the most out of the staple lifts like the push-up, dumbbell row, squat, and deadlift. These four are probably the most common exercises within weight training circles, and they’re included in nearly all of the programs you’ll see on this site.

Believe it or not, these exercises are enough to put you on the road to physique of your dreams, if you do them right. However, despite their popularity, they’re very technical movements that can be easy to butcher.

It’s easy to attribute technique flaws to a lack of mobility, but here’s what that excuse overlooks: Most exercises are corrective in nature and relatively easy to master, provided you take the time to progress through them and learn them properly.

Let’s go upstream and solve these problems before they start! Here’s what I see going wrong with the way most people perform the four fundamental lifts, and how you can perform them to get the most bang for your buck in the gym.

Exercise 1

Many push-up issues start when people focus on what muscle groups the push-up “works.” If you’re thinking all about chest, arms, and shoulders, you’ll forget to keep the rest of the body tense and stable. This should be a full-body lift!

Make sure your hips and shoulders are lined up your arms and are in the best position to develop true pressing strength. This will help you build the most force at the bottom push-up position.

Push-Up Fixes
Watch The Video – 02:06

Push-up coaching points
  • Squeeze your glutes and abs to lock your hips to your core.
  • Keep your arm tight to the armpits.
  • Hit the ground with your chest before your head.

Exercise 2

Most issues dumbbell rows happen when the spine is held in a flexed and rounded-back position, rather than a neutral position. Improper spine positioning causes the shoulder blade to move up instead of down when the upper back is rounded, which forces the upper traps to work instead of the lats.

Focus on keeping a long, tight spine during the movement, and you should feel the burn directly below your shoulder blade, into to your tailbone, and through the lats.

Breaking Down The Dumbbell Row
Watch The Video – 02:17

Dumbbell row coaching points
  • Take a wider stance than you think you need.
  • Keep the spine long and straight with the chest up.
  • Let the shoulder blade do the work. The wrist and elbow follow the shoulder.

Exercise 3

Problematic squatters generally fall into two camps: those who are stiff and tight, and those who are mobile but have trouble controlling the movement. I discussed squatting issues before in a power panel with my fellow strength training coaches, but this never-ending battle is always worth discussing.

Squatting is very technical and involves many moving parts. The best plan: Don’t jump into heavy weight too quickly. Start by doing bodyweight reps within your scope of control. Once you add weight, focus on getting comfortable at hitting depth and building a more effective range of motion.

Before you even think of going heavy, ensure that you can control the movement with your heels on the floor, hamstrings resting on your calves, and your torso positioned long and tall.

Squat Fix: Low Mobility
Watch The Video – 05:12

Squat coaching points
  • Keep your feet flat on the floor and press evenly throughout.
  • Create force through the hips to drive the movement.
  • Lean the torso forward as your hips move into the rep.
  • Keep the core tense without restricting airflow.
  • Keep the shoulders vertical over the middle of the foot.

Exercise 4

The deadlift is a skill-based movement that takes reps and consistent practice to improve. Most common deadlifting issues derive from the spine doing too much work instead of the hips, which are supposed to drive the movement. The spine should be a rigid lever that transfers force from the legs and hips up through the arms, thereby moving the weight.

Get your core and shoulders tight and keep the spine stiff to assist the movement. The deadlift isn’t easy, but once you perfect your technique, you’d better believe it can be fun to lift a heavy weight off the ground.

Deadlift Tutorial
Watch The Video – 05:23

Deadlift coaching points
  • Keep the spine straight and drive the movement from your hips.
  • Set the bar close to your shins at the start of the movement and keep the shin vertical, without positioning the knee ahead of the bar.
  • Brace your abs, squeeze your arms down tight to your ribs, and stand tall without over-extending at lockout.

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Start Small To Lift Big: How To Master 4 Fundamental Exercises

Posted in Bodybuilding, Exercises, Nutrition, Weight TrainingComments Off on Start Small To Lift Big: How To Master 4 Fundamental Exercises

<div id="DPG" webReader="185.509833585"><div class="side-bar" webReader="-14.5273972603"><div class="c11"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/train-magazine-vital-stats-b.jpg"/></div><h3 class="article-title c12">Vital Stats</h3><p><strong>TRAIN MAGAZINE</strong><br />The Official Print Partner of Bodybuilding.com</p><p><strong>Website:</strong> <a href="https://train.magcs.com/IT2C51/subscribe" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">https://train.magcs.com/</a><br /><strong>Facebook:</strong> <a href="https://www.facebook.com/TRAINmagazine" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">TRAINmagazine</a><br /><strong>Twitter:</strong> <a href="https://twitter.com/TRAINmag" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">TRAINmag</a></p></div><p>You've probably been told over and over again by every respectable nutritionist and doctor out there that a supplement stack cannot overcome a poor diet.</p><p>Let's reverse engineer that statement, because it's also telling you that your exercise performance can get absolutely everything it needs from the whole foods section of the supermarket.</p><p>Consider that taking creatine for a few weeks can increase your muscle power by 15 percent, or having a caffeine pill before a workout can boost your endurance by a staggering 17 percent. Well, there aren't any foods which can boast those benefits, so supplements clearly have their place.</p><p>A weak diet isn't necessarily thanks to a distaste for vegetables, nor is it always a conscious decision. Think of it this way: If 12 p.m. saddles you with non-negotiable ravenousness and you only have the $5 you dug out from under the sofa cushions, you can still grab a meal deal at a drive-thru. But, go to an organic market and ask a teller what you can get for your five bucks, and you'll be lucky if you get offered a liter of expired goat's milk and a coupon to McDonald's.</p><p>You see, the ever-hastening pace and cost of life means healthy eating doesn't always fit your schedule. So if vegetables and lean proteins have become an afterthought, then the question that needs asking is: Can a bad diet be made moderately respectable by good supplementing?</p><p>These supplement strategies can help you improve your health, even if you absolutely insist on eating like a four-year-old. And if you're smart enough to already eat healthy, but treat yourself to the odd cheat meal then these tactics will help you activate damage control mode when the times comes. Either way you win, and will be healthier and fitter.</p><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/can-you-out-supplement-a-bad-diet-1.jpg" width="560" height="493" border="0"/><p>"The ever-hastening pace and cost of life means healthy eating doesn't always fit your schedule."</p><h3 class="article-title">IS YOUR MULTIVITAMIN A LIE?</h3><p>Sportsman or not, multivitamins are at home in just about every household. They claim to fill in any gaps in your nutrition, not boost sports performance, so their main selling point is actually longevity and an improved ability to fend off disease.</p><p>Is the science at odds with the marketing claims? Well, researchers who published their results in the "American Journal of Epidemiology" undertook a ground-breaking study that followed almost 200,000 multivitamin-users over an 11-year period.</p><p>The researchers found that there was no decrease or increase in mortality from all causes, such as cardiovascular disease or cancer, between people who took multivitamins and people who didn't.</p><p>In short: multivitamins did nothing. Zero benefit. So if they're doing nothing and you chuck them down your throat like sweets to counterbalance your KFC obsession, then Colonel Sander's offerings are going to have a pervasive effect inside your body.</p><p>There is also a worrying psychological aspect; it's thought that people who take multivitamins feel they have more junk food and exercise lay-day credits than people who don't. Sadly, the Grim Reaper doesn't factor in these supposed get-out clauses when he's hard at the grind.</p><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/can-you-out-supplement-a-bad-diet-2.jpg" width="560" height="412" border="0"/><p>"The researchers found that there was no decrease or increase in mortality from all causes, such as cardiovascular disease or cancer, between people who took multivitamins and people who didn't."</p><h3 class="article-title">THE LESSER OF TWO EVILS</h3><p>Supplement manufacturers by law have to state that their product is not a replacement for real food, but if we can send dudes to the moon on powdered Sunday roasts then isn't it logical that humans have progressed enough to make the "pill-diet" possible?</p><p>"Astronauts' diets have been carefully formulated by top scientists to make sure no micro or macronutrient is overlooked," says Dr Jerry Liu, a nutritionist and food chemist.</p><p>"On a global scale, this is actually done very successfully in animal models, with cows eating a mix of whole foods and artificially added nutrients. And you go on to enjoy their steaks as part of your balanced diet."</p><p>Hell, even your pet pooch has his diet created in a lab and he's living longer than ever.</p><p>"In theory, you can live on supplements, but the DIY approach will no doubt leave you with serious holes in your dietary requirements because you won't have the tech to monitor how much of each nutrient your body is absorbing," adds Dr Liu.</p><p>Even though product labels are monitored to make sure they're truthful, you can't be 100 percent sure you're getting exactly what they claim to contain.</p><p>"Often the processing destroys many of the unstable micronutrients and digestive enzymes your body needs to absorb [certain] nutrients," Dr Liu continues.</p><img class="float-right c13" src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/can-you-out-supplement-a-bad-diet-3.jpg" width="344" height="211" border="0"/><p>"Many green supplements are getting frighteningly close nutrient levels to real foods, but they're not quite a match just yet."</p><p>Real organic food guarantees health, but you take a risk by trying to supplement yourself healthy—unless your bedroom is built by NASA.</p><p>"Obviously, if you're eating badly then taking something like a green supplement is going to be significantly better for you than not taking it," explains Dr Liu. "Many green supplements are getting frighteningly close nutrient levels to real foods, but they're not quite a match just yet."</p><p>So take them to put something healthy back into your body, but remember that they're not a sure enough bet just yet to risk your neck on.</p><h3 class="article-title">HELPING HANDS</h3><p>Dutifully sticking to a nutrition strategy doesn't always dish up world-class results. Occasionally getting a little lax with your diet is not just an extravagance, but a necessity. Cheat meals can actually help you stick to your diet, found research at the University of Illinois. The break from restricting calories helps keep you on track.</p><p>"Looking forward to a cheat meal at the end of the week keeps people disciplined and actually has the power to speed up metabolism and burn more calories," says Moodie Dennaoui, nutritionist to world champion boxers such as Billy Dib.</p><p>But if you want to gorge on cheat meals that would make The Rock envious then you're presented with an opportunity to out-supplement a bad meal. "There is a lot of scientific evidence behind the effectiveness of carbs blockers on the market and to a lesser extent fat blockers have also shown some promise," says Dr Liu.</p><p>"Supplements with white kidney bean extract can reduce your body's ability to digest carbs and reduce the number of calories you extract from your cheat meal."</p><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/can-you-out-supplement-a-bad-diet-4.jpg" width="560" height="xxx" border="0"/><p>Supplements with white kidney bean extract can reduce your body's ability to digest carbs and reduce the number of calories you extract from your cheat meal.</p><p>Just as you mentally prepare for your big burger blowout, you should also plan to reduce its ill effects by using these supplements. But what about long-term periods of junk-food binges, such as a holiday, where you regularly visit restaurants and buffets?</p><p>"Taking a fiber supplement can be beneficial because processed foods lack this nutrient and it helps to push the food through your digestive system," says Dr Liu. "This means the toxins won't be in your system as long as they would be otherwise."</p><p>It may not be a great long-term strategy, but it will certainly help you come back from a holiday with a tan instead of belly.</p><h3 class="article-title">IT'S ALL IN THE NAME</h3><img class="float-right c15" src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/can-you-out-supplement-a-bad-diet-5.jpg" width="226" height="251" border="0"/><p>If you wash down pizzas with an extra-strength green super-drink then you definitely cushion the blow. Yes, today's supplements can almost do the job of a king-sized salad, but it still can't quite match it.</p><p>"Fresh foods are alive and the nutrients are as concentrated as you'll ever eat," says Dr Liu. "You may get 1,000 micrograms of spinach from a teaspoon of a green supplement, but that's never going to outshine the benefits of fresh food."</p><p>Mother Nature isn't a girl who can be bested just yet, and supplements remain supplements—not substitutes. So be a man and eat like a man, not a child.</p><a href="https://train.magcs.com/IT2C51/subscribe" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/train-magazine-banner-1-24-2014.jpg" width="560" height="200" border="0" class="c16"/></a><br class="c17"/><h3 class="article-title">Recommended For You</h3><div class="c20" webReader="5.82857142857"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/3-types-of-muscle-building-supplements-for-overall-growth.html"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/whats-sup-smallbox.jpg" alt="" width="200" height="114"/></a><div class="c19" webReader="8.01428571429"><h4 class="c18"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/3-types-of-muscle-building-supplements-for-overall-growth.html">3 Types Of Muscle-Building Supplements For Overall Growth</a></h4><p style="display: inline;" class="webReader-styled">
In its inaugural edition, TRAIN magazine, the newest health and fitness bible, reveals the truth about how they work and what you should be taking when.</p></div></div><div class="c20" webReader="4.55924170616"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/vindicating-vitamins-protecting-your-health-is-not-a-waste.html"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/vindicating-vitamins-smallbox.jpg" alt="" width="200" height="114"/></a><div class="c19" webReader="5.61137440758"><h4 class="c18"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/vindicating-vitamins-protecting-your-health-is-not-a-waste.html">Vindicating Vitamins: Protecting Your Health Is Never A 'Waste'</a></h4><p style="display: inline;" class="webReader-styled">
Don't fall for sensational headlines and slanted science about vitamin/mineral supplementation. Nothing short of your long-term health is at stake.</p></div></div><div class="c20" webReader="4.16228070175"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/stone-age-sustenance-maximize-your-modern-diet.html"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/maximize-your-modern-diet-smallbox.jpg" alt="" width="200" height="114"/></a><div class="c19" webReader="5.12280701754"><h4 class="c18"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/stone-age-sustenance-maximize-your-modern-diet.html">Stone Age Sustenance: Fill The Gaps In Your Modern Diet With Smart Supplementation</a></h4><p style="display: inline;" class="webReader-styled">
The cavemen were lucky in one way: Today's produce is half the quality it once was. Fill the gaps in your modern diet with smart supplementation!</p></div></div></div>

Can You Out-Supplement A Bad Diet?

You’ve probably been told over and over again by every respectable nutritionist and doctor out there that a supplement stack cannot overcome a poor diet.

Let’s reverse engineer that statement, because it’s also telling you that your exercise performance can get absolutely everything it needs from the whole foods section of the supermarket.

Consider that taking creatine for a few weeks can increase your muscle power by 15 percent, or having a caffeine pill before a workout can boost your endurance by a staggering 17 percent. Well, there aren’t any foods which can boast those benefits, so supplements clearly have their place.

A weak diet isn’t necessarily thanks to a distaste for vegetables, nor is it always a conscious decision. Think of it this way: If 12 p.m. saddles you with non-negotiable ravenousness and you only have the $5 you dug out from under the sofa cushions, you can still grab a meal deal at a drive-thru. But, go to an organic market and ask a teller what you can get for your five bucks, and you’ll be lucky if you get offered a liter of expired goat’s milk and a coupon to McDonald’s.

You see, the ever-hastening pace and cost of life means healthy eating doesn’t always fit your schedule. So if vegetables and lean proteins have become an afterthought, then the question that needs asking is: Can a bad diet be made moderately respectable by good supplementing?

These supplement strategies can help you improve your health, even if you absolutely insist on eating like a four-year-old. And if you’re smart enough to already eat healthy, but treat yourself to the odd cheat meal then these tactics will help you activate damage control mode when the times comes. Either way you win, and will be healthier and fitter.

“The ever-hastening pace and cost of life means healthy eating doesn’t always fit your schedule.”

IS YOUR MULTIVITAMIN A LIE?

Sportsman or not, multivitamins are at home in just about every household. They claim to fill in any gaps in your nutrition, not boost sports performance, so their main selling point is actually longevity and an improved ability to fend off disease.

Is the science at odds with the marketing claims? Well, researchers who published their results in the “American Journal of Epidemiology” undertook a ground-breaking study that followed almost 200,000 multivitamin-users over an 11-year period.

The researchers found that there was no decrease or increase in mortality from all causes, such as cardiovascular disease or cancer, between people who took multivitamins and people who didn’t.

In short: multivitamins did nothing. Zero benefit. So if they’re doing nothing and you chuck them down your throat like sweets to counterbalance your KFC obsession, then Colonel Sander’s offerings are going to have a pervasive effect inside your body.

There is also a worrying psychological aspect; it’s thought that people who take multivitamins feel they have more junk food and exercise lay-day credits than people who don’t. Sadly, the Grim Reaper doesn’t factor in these supposed get-out clauses when he’s hard at the grind.

“The researchers found that there was no decrease or increase in mortality from all causes, such as cardiovascular disease or cancer, between people who took multivitamins and people who didn’t.”

THE LESSER OF TWO EVILS

Supplement manufacturers by law have to state that their product is not a replacement for real food, but if we can send dudes to the moon on powdered Sunday roasts then isn’t it logical that humans have progressed enough to make the “pill-diet” possible?

“Astronauts’ diets have been carefully formulated by top scientists to make sure no micro or macronutrient is overlooked,” says Dr Jerry Liu, a nutritionist and food chemist.

“On a global scale, this is actually done very successfully in animal models, with cows eating a mix of whole foods and artificially added nutrients. And you go on to enjoy their steaks as part of your balanced diet.”

Hell, even your pet pooch has his diet created in a lab and he’s living longer than ever.

“In theory, you can live on supplements, but the DIY approach will no doubt leave you with serious holes in your dietary requirements because you won’t have the tech to monitor how much of each nutrient your body is absorbing,” adds Dr Liu.

Even though product labels are monitored to make sure they’re truthful, you can’t be 100 percent sure you’re getting exactly what they claim to contain.

“Often the processing destroys many of the unstable micronutrients and digestive enzymes your body needs to absorb [certain] nutrients,” Dr Liu continues.

“Many green supplements are getting frighteningly close nutrient levels to real foods, but they’re not quite a match just yet.”

Real organic food guarantees health, but you take a risk by trying to supplement yourself healthy—unless your bedroom is built by NASA.

“Obviously, if you’re eating badly then taking something like a green supplement is going to be significantly better for you than not taking it,” explains Dr Liu. “Many green supplements are getting frighteningly close nutrient levels to real foods, but they’re not quite a match just yet.”

So take them to put something healthy back into your body, but remember that they’re not a sure enough bet just yet to risk your neck on.

HELPING HANDS

Dutifully sticking to a nutrition strategy doesn’t always dish up world-class results. Occasionally getting a little lax with your diet is not just an extravagance, but a necessity. Cheat meals can actually help you stick to your diet, found research at the University of Illinois. The break from restricting calories helps keep you on track.

“Looking forward to a cheat meal at the end of the week keeps people disciplined and actually has the power to speed up metabolism and burn more calories,” says Moodie Dennaoui, nutritionist to world champion boxers such as Billy Dib.

But if you want to gorge on cheat meals that would make The Rock envious then you’re presented with an opportunity to out-supplement a bad meal. “There is a lot of scientific evidence behind the effectiveness of carbs blockers on the market and to a lesser extent fat blockers have also shown some promise,” says Dr Liu.

“Supplements with white kidney bean extract can reduce your body’s ability to digest carbs and reduce the number of calories you extract from your cheat meal.”

Supplements with white kidney bean extract can reduce your body’s ability to digest carbs and reduce the number of calories you extract from your cheat meal.

Just as you mentally prepare for your big burger blowout, you should also plan to reduce its ill effects by using these supplements. But what about long-term periods of junk-food binges, such as a holiday, where you regularly visit restaurants and buffets?

“Taking a fiber supplement can be beneficial because processed foods lack this nutrient and it helps to push the food through your digestive system,” says Dr Liu. “This means the toxins won’t be in your system as long as they would be otherwise.”

It may not be a great long-term strategy, but it will certainly help you come back from a holiday with a tan instead of belly.

IT’S ALL IN THE NAME

If you wash down pizzas with an extra-strength green super-drink then you definitely cushion the blow. Yes, today’s supplements can almost do the job of a king-sized salad, but it still can’t quite match it.

“Fresh foods are alive and the nutrients are as concentrated as you’ll ever eat,” says Dr Liu. “You may get 1,000 micrograms of spinach from a teaspoon of a green supplement, but that’s never going to outshine the benefits of fresh food.”

Mother Nature isn’t a girl who can be bested just yet, and supplements remain supplements—not substitutes. So be a man and eat like a man, not a child.


Recommended For You

3 Types Of Muscle-Building Supplements For Overall Growth

In its inaugural edition, TRAIN magazine, the newest health and fitness bible, reveals the truth about how they work and what you should be taking when.

Vindicating Vitamins: Protecting Your Health Is Never A ‘Waste’

Don’t fall for sensational headlines and slanted science about vitamin/mineral supplementation. Nothing short of your long-term health is at stake.

Stone Age Sustenance: Fill The Gaps In Your Modern Diet With Smart Supplementation

The cavemen were lucky in one way: Today’s produce is half the quality it once was. Fill the gaps in your modern diet with smart supplementation!

Link:  

Can You Out-Supplement A Bad Diet?

Posted in Bodybuilding, Diets, Exercises, NutritionComments Off on Can You Out-Supplement A Bad Diet?

<div id="DPG" webReader="72.0036385688"><div class="side-bar" webReader="-14.5273972603"><div class="c12"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/train-magazine-vital-stats-b.jpg"/></div><h3 class="article-title c13">Vital Stats</h3><p><strong>TRAIN MAGAZINE</strong><br />The Official Print Partner of Bodybuilding.com</p><p><strong>Website:</strong> <a href="https://train.magcs.com/IT2C51/subscribe" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">https://train.magcs.com/</a><br /><strong>Facebook:</strong> <a href="https://www.facebook.com/TRAINmagazine" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">TRAINmagazine</a><br /><strong>Twitter:</strong> <a href="https://twitter.com/TRAINmag" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">TRAINmag</a></p></div><p>People tend to focus on the biceps and neglect the triceps, but many weightlifters can't seem to realize that the triceps make up two-thirds of the upper arm, while the biceps are, simply put, just the icing on the cake.</p><p>The triceps may be an explosive muscle but they can also succumb to fatigue easily, so performing countless amounts of sets and reps may be counterproductive. I recommend both high and low rep sets to trigger maximum growth and ultimate shape.</p><h3 class="article-title">Gethin's Triceps Armageddon</h3><p>The elbow joints commonly become inflamed and injured if adequate warm-up sets aren't applied. I recommend at least two warm-up sets before entering your first working set. But use your instinct. If you feel that your muscles or joints need more warm-up sets, then feel free to adapt accordingly.</p><p>During your 2-minute rest period, stretch the triceps muscles to encourage full muscular development. Stretching can improve the muscle's shape by pulling apart the fascia that surrounds muscle fiber bundles. Once the blood is pumped within the fibers of the triceps, the elasticity is improved and already under expansion due to the flood of nutrient- and oxygen-rich blood. The perfect duration to hold each arm stretch is for 30 seconds each.</p><p>In this workout, we target the rear muscle of your arm, applying stress to all three heads of the triceps with strict form. Complete the three exercises back to back in a giant set manner with no rest in-between, much like a circuit.</p><img src="images/2014/pumping-iron-kris-gethins-top-3-triceps-exercises-2.jpg" width="560" height="408" border="0"/><p>"The triceps may be an explosive muscle but they can also succumb to fatigue easily, so performing countless amounts of sets and reps may be counterproductive."</p><div id="meal-plan-table"><h6>Giant Set: Rest 2 minutes between sets</h6><ul><li class="rowBgColor c14"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('triceps-pushdown')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/343/Male/t/343_1.jpg" alt="Standing Cable Push-Down" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('triceps-pushdown')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/343/Male/t/343_2.jpg" alt="Standing Cable Push-Down" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('triceps-pushdown')">Standing Cable Push-Down</a></strong><br />2 warm-up sets, 5 sets to failure at 20-25 reps</span></li>
<li class="rowBorderColor c14"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('seated-triceps-press')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/341/Male/t/341_1.jpg" alt="Seated Double Overhead Dumbbell Extension" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('seated-triceps-press')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/341/Male/t/341_2.jpg" alt="Seated Double Overhead Dumbbell Extension" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('seated-triceps-press')">Seated Double Overhead Dumbbell Extension</a></strong><br />2 warm-up sets, 5 sets to failure at 8-12 reps</span></li>
<li class="rowBgColor c14"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('triceps-pushdown-rope-attachment')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/54/Male/t/54_1.jpg" alt="Standing Rope Push-Downs" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('triceps-pushdown-rope-attachment')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/54/Male/t/54_2.jpg" alt="Standing Rope Push-Downs" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content c15"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('triceps-pushdown-rope-attachment')">Standing Rope Push-Downs</a></strong><br />2 warm-up sets, 5 sets to failure at 10 reps with ropes wide, 5-second rest-pause, 5 sets to failure at 20 reps with ropes together</span></li>
</ul><br /></div><br /><h3 class="article-title">EXERCISE 1 </h3><p>Attach a straight bar to the overhead pulley and grasp with an overhand grip two inches apart. Keep your hands level with your lower chest when starting this exercise; keep your elbows tucked tight against the side of your torso. Your back should be relatively straight with your knees slightly bent. Extend the bar down until your arms are locked straight, while still rigid by your sides. Repeat this movement until failure is reached at approximately 20-25 repetitions.</p><img src="images/2014/pumping-iron-kris-gethins-top-3-triceps-exercises-1.jpg" width="560" height="404" border="0" class="c16"/><h6 class="altH6 c17">Standing Cable Push-Down</h6><p><strong>Tip:</strong> The standing cable push-down is an isolation movement that directly targets the outer and medial head of the triceps. Being a cable exercise, you can guarantee constant stress is placed upon the triceps during the whole range of movement when performed correctly.</p><h3 class="article-title">EXERCISE 2 </h3><p>Select a dumbbell that will allow you to reach failure around 8-12 reps. Sit on a military bench with your back flat against the vertical pad support. Lift the dumbbell overhead with both palms placed flat against the inner plate surface. Both elbows should be tucked tight to your ears. Beginning with the dumbbell behind your head, extend up and stop three inches before locking out to keep constant tension placed upon the triceps muscles. The upper arms and elbows should remain static while only the lower arms extend up and down.</p><p><strong>Tip:</strong> Constant tension is harder to apply to this free-weight movement, so be sure to shorten the range of movement slightly once tension feels lessened.</p><img src="images/2014/pumping-iron-kris-gethins-top-3-triceps-exercises-3.jpg" width="150" height="280" border="0" class="float-right c18"/><h3 class="article-title">EXERCISE 3 </h3><p>Fasten a rope attachment to a high pulley and hold it with palms facing each other. As you bring the rope down, pull each side of the rope outward toward your thighs. Hold and contract this position for one second before returning to the start position. Aim to reach failure at 10 repetitions. Once failure is reached, try leaning slightly forward. Draw both ropes together until your palms almost touch, and after a five-second rest perform the movement again until failure is reached at an additional 20 reps.</p><p><strong>Tip:</strong> By twisting the wrist in a pronated fashion while pulling each rope outward, the contraction becomes accentuated, with more detailed muscle fiber recruitment coming into play.</p><a href="https://train.magcs.com/IT2C51/subscribe" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/train-magazine-banner-1-24-2014.jpg" width="560" height="200" border="0" class="c19"/></a><br class="c20"/><h3 class="article-title">Recommended For You</h3><div class="c23" webReader="4.55"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/boot-camp-fit-grenades-rhino-crossfit-boot-camp.html"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/get-boot-camp-fit-small.jpg" alt="" width="200" height="114"/></a><div class="c22" webReader="5.6"><h4 class="c21"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/boot-camp-fit-grenades-rhino-crossfit-boot-camp.html">Boot Camp Fit: Grenade's Rhino CrossFit Boot Camp Workout</a></h4><p style="display: inline;" class="webReader-styled">
Think you've got what it takes to hang with the ripped athletes of Team Grenade? Test yourself with this grueling boot camp workout!</p></div></div><div class="c23" webReader="4.865"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/3-benefits-of-weightlifting-complexes-and-3-sample-complexes.html"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/3-benefits-of-weightlifting-complexes-smallbox.jpg" alt="" width="200" height="114"/></a><div class="c22" webReader="6.255"><h4 class="c21"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/3-benefits-of-weightlifting-complexes-and-3-sample-complexes.html">3 Benefits Of Weightlifting Complexes And 3 Sample Complexes!</a></h4><p style="display: inline;" class="webReader-styled">
Busting through plateaus can be frustrating, but this article makes complexes seem simple. Burn fat in a hurry and expedite your progress!</p></div></div><div class="c23" webReader="5.11520737327"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/kris-gethin-vs-team-grenade-dtp-biceps-and-triceps-workout.html"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/gethin-vs-grenade-dtp-arms-assault-smallbox.jpg" alt="" width="200" height="114"/></a><div class="c22" webReader="6.8202764977"><h4 class="c21"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/kris-gethin-vs-team-grenade-dtp-biceps-and-triceps-workout.html">Kris Gethin Vs. Team Grenade, Round 3: DTP Biceps And Triceps Workout</a></h4><p style="display: inline;" class="webReader-styled">
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Pumping Iron: Kris Gethin's Top 3 Triceps Exercises

People tend to focus on the biceps and neglect the triceps, but many weightlifters can’t seem to realize that the triceps make up two-thirds of the upper arm, while the biceps are, simply put, just the icing on the cake.

The triceps may be an explosive muscle but they can also succumb to fatigue easily, so performing countless amounts of sets and reps may be counterproductive. I recommend both high and low rep sets to trigger maximum growth and ultimate shape.

Gethin’s Triceps Armageddon

The elbow joints commonly become inflamed and injured if adequate warm-up sets aren’t applied. I recommend at least two warm-up sets before entering your first working set. But use your instinct. If you feel that your muscles or joints need more warm-up sets, then feel free to adapt accordingly.

During your 2-minute rest period, stretch the triceps muscles to encourage full muscular development. Stretching can improve the muscle’s shape by pulling apart the fascia that surrounds muscle fiber bundles. Once the blood is pumped within the fibers of the triceps, the elasticity is improved and already under expansion due to the flood of nutrient- and oxygen-rich blood. The perfect duration to hold each arm stretch is for 30 seconds each.

In this workout, we target the rear muscle of your arm, applying stress to all three heads of the triceps with strict form. Complete the three exercises back to back in a giant set manner with no rest in-between, much like a circuit.

“The triceps may be an explosive muscle but they can also succumb to fatigue easily, so performing countless amounts of sets and reps may be counterproductive.”

Giant Set: Rest 2 minutes between sets

EXERCISE 1

Attach a straight bar to the overhead pulley and grasp with an overhand grip two inches apart. Keep your hands level with your lower chest when starting this exercise; keep your elbows tucked tight against the side of your torso. Your back should be relatively straight with your knees slightly bent. Extend the bar down until your arms are locked straight, while still rigid by your sides. Repeat this movement until failure is reached at approximately 20-25 repetitions.

Standing Cable Push-Down

Tip: The standing cable push-down is an isolation movement that directly targets the outer and medial head of the triceps. Being a cable exercise, you can guarantee constant stress is placed upon the triceps during the whole range of movement when performed correctly.

EXERCISE 2

Select a dumbbell that will allow you to reach failure around 8-12 reps. Sit on a military bench with your back flat against the vertical pad support. Lift the dumbbell overhead with both palms placed flat against the inner plate surface. Both elbows should be tucked tight to your ears. Beginning with the dumbbell behind your head, extend up and stop three inches before locking out to keep constant tension placed upon the triceps muscles. The upper arms and elbows should remain static while only the lower arms extend up and down.

Tip: Constant tension is harder to apply to this free-weight movement, so be sure to shorten the range of movement slightly once tension feels lessened.

EXERCISE 3

Fasten a rope attachment to a high pulley and hold it with palms facing each other. As you bring the rope down, pull each side of the rope outward toward your thighs. Hold and contract this position for one second before returning to the start position. Aim to reach failure at 10 repetitions. Once failure is reached, try leaning slightly forward. Draw both ropes together until your palms almost touch, and after a five-second rest perform the movement again until failure is reached at an additional 20 reps.

Tip: By twisting the wrist in a pronated fashion while pulling each rope outward, the contraction becomes accentuated, with more detailed muscle fiber recruitment coming into play.


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If you’ve never tried DTP, Kris Gethin’s brutal training system, this is the perfect place to start. Attack your arms with Gethin and Team Grenade!

Link to original – 

Pumping Iron: Kris Gethin's Top 3 Triceps Exercises

Posted in Bodybuilding, Exercises, NutritionComments Off on Pumping Iron: Kris Gethin's Top 3 Triceps Exercises

<div id="DPG" webReader="95.5903365294"><div class="side-bar" webReader="-14.5273972603"><div class="c11"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/train-magazine-vital-stats-b.jpg"/></div><h3 class="article-title c12">Vital Stats</h3><p><strong>TRAIN MAGAZINE</strong><br />The Official Print Partner of Bodybuilding.com</p><p><strong>Website:</strong> <a href="https://train.magcs.com/IT2C51/subscribe" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">https://train.magcs.com/</a><br /><strong>Facebook:</strong> <a href="https://www.facebook.com/TRAINmagazine" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">TRAINmagazine</a><br /><strong>Twitter:</strong> <a href="https://twitter.com/TRAINmag" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">TRAINmag</a></p></div><p>The hottest topic on most people's lips is fat loss, whether they're getting back in shape for the New Year, getting ready for spring break, or getting into that old dress or their favorite pair of jeans. This is the perfect time to recalibrate, refocus, and recommit to your fat-loss program.</p><p>One of the best training methods in my arsenal is complex or matrix-style training. These methods work extremely well after the strength-boosting component of your program, when you've already made a concerted effort to build some muscle.</p><p>I first learned about complexes back in the late 1990s when I was just getting started in the iron game. Istvan Javorek is widely regarded as the pioneer of complexes, and while he used them to improve the Olympic lifts, I feel as though they're great as a workout finisher as well.</p><p>But before we dive head first into a few sample complexes or matrices, let's first discuss why you might choose to include them in your workouts.</p><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/3-benefits-of-weightlifting-complexes-and-3-sample-complexes-1b.jpg" width="560" height="631" border="0"/><p>Complex or matrix-style training work extremely well after you've already made a concerted effort to build some muscle.</p><h3 class="article-title">BENEFITS OF COMPLEXES</h3><p>Complexes and matrices have quite a few benefits, but here are just a few that spring to mind:</p><div class="left-side-stripe" webReader="2"><p>
<h4 class="c13">1 They're Fat Loss Friendly</h4>
</p><p>This is an obvious benefit for long duration, low intensity cardio targets such as improved cardiovascular function and parasympathetic tone etc.—but not maximal fat loss. Anaerobic intervals in the 1:1-1:3 work:rest ratio are some of the best ways to shed body fat. You don't want to use them all year round, but if you want an all-out assault on body fat, they're the real deal.</p><p>
<h4 class="c13">2 They're Fast</h4>
</p><p>If you're looking to get lean, more training volume isn't always better. In fact, this is the ideal time to use faster, more high intensity methods. Complexes are fast and brutally effective, which gets you in and out of the gym quicker.</p><p>
<h4 class="c13">3 They Efficiently Use Space and Equipment</h4>
</p><p>One of the big issues when it comes to fat loss training is equipment and/or space. Not everyone has sleds, prowlers or a hill in the backyard to train with. <img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/3-benefits-of-weightlifting-complexes-and-3-sample-complexes-2b.jpg" width="272" height="160" border="0" class="float-right c14"/> Complexes and matrices are not only space efficient—they can often be done in a small area—but theyrequire minimal equipment as well. With only one barbell, a sandbag or even just your bodyweight you can knock out an intense workout.</p></div><h3 class="article-title">THE BASICS</h3><p>When performing complexes, I typically prescribe 24 total reps. My favorite options are either four exercises with six repetitions each, or six exercises with four repetitions each. You'll perform each exercise for the allotted number of repetitions, and then move immediately into the next exercise. Go through the entire series of exercises, and then rest for the same period of time, or at the most, twice as long as it took you to go through the series.</p><p>As your conditioning improves, work to decrease the rest period so that you adhere to a 1:1 work:rest ratio.</p><h3 class="article-title">SAMPLE COMPLEXES AND MATRICES</h3><p>Now that we've covered the basics, let's look at a couple of sample complexes you can take to the gym and start performing today!</p><h4>The Basic Barbell Complex</h4><p>This is a super-efficient complex that even the most seasoned iron veteran will enjoy. All the big lifts are tied into one awesome series!</p><div class="left-side-stripe" webReader="-23"><div class="float-right c17"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/3-benefits-of-weightlifting-complexes-and-3-sample-complexes-4.jpg" width="219" height="247" border="0" class="c15"/><h6 class="altH6 c16">Front Squat</h6></div><p><strong>Week 1:</strong> 3 complexes<br /><strong>Week 2:</strong> 4 complexes<br /><strong>Week 3:</strong> 5 complexes<br /><strong>Week 4:</strong> 6 complexes</p><h6>Complex</h6><ul class="dpg-list"><li>Romanian Deadlift: 4 reps</li>
<li>Bent-Over Row: 4 reps</li>
<li>Front Squat: 4 reps</li>
<li>Push Press: 4 reps</li>
<li>Good Morning: 4 reps</li>
<li>Back Squat: 4 reps</li>
</ul><br /></div><h4>Bodyweight Leg Matrix</h4><p>If you struggle with body fat in the legs, this lower-body matrix will help you blowtorch it like no other!</p><div class="left-side-stripe" webReader="-23"><div class="float-right c18"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/3-benefits-of-weightlifting-complexes-and-3-sample-complexes-3.jpg" width="150" height="200" border="0" class="c15"/><h6 class="altH6 c16">Lunge</h6></div><p><strong>Week 1:</strong> 2 matrices<br /><strong>Week 2:</strong> 3 matrices<br /><strong>Week 3:</strong> 3 matrices<br /><strong>Week 4:</strong> 4 matrices</p><h6>Matrix</h6><ul class="dpg-list"><li>Vertical Jump: 6 reps</li>
<li>Squat: 6 reps</li>
<li>Step-Up: 6 reps</li>
<li>Lunge: 6 reps</li>
</ul><br /></div><h4>Sandbag Complex</h4><p>Last but not least, if you want something a bit different, give this sandbag complex a shot. It's not only fun, but the sandbag also creates some unique challenges due to its non-conforming nature.</p><div class="left-side-stripe" webReader="-23"><div class="float-right c19"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/3-benefits-of-weightlifting-complexes-and-3-sample-complexes-5.jpg" width="236" height="292" border="0" class="c15"/><h6 class="altH6 c16">Overhead Press</h6></div><p><strong>Week 1:</strong> 3 complexes<br /><strong>Week 2:</strong> 4 complexes<br /><strong>Week 3:</strong> 5 complexes<br /><strong>Week 4:</strong> 6 complexes</p><h6>Complex</h6><ul class="dpg-list"><li>Sandbag Shouldering: 6 reps</li>
<li>Bent-Over Row: 6 reps</li>
<li>Romanian Deadlift: 6 reps</li>
<li>Overhead Press: 6 reps</li>
</ul><br /></div><br /><h3 class="article-title">SUMMARY</h3><p>As you can see, fat loss training doesn't have to be complex (pun intended). Instead, basic exercises performed in series at a breakneck pace can absolutely help you achieve your goals quickly.</p><p>For the next month, finish at least one, if not two, of your workouts with one of the complexes or matrices outlined above. I guarantee it's going to fast track your fat loss progress, and get you on your way to the lean, sculpted physique you've been looking for!</p><a href="https://train.magcs.com/IT2C51/subscribe" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/train-magazine-banner-1-24-2014.jpg" width="560" height="200" border="0" class="c20"/></a><br class="c21"/><h3 class="article-title">Recommended For You</h3><div class="c24" webReader="4.88888888889"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/5-muscle-misconceptions-that-may-stall-your-muscle-growth.html"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/5-muscle-misconceptions-smallbox.jpg" alt="" width="200" height="114"/></a><div class="c23" webReader="6.28571428571"><h4 class="c22"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/5-muscle-misconceptions-that-may-stall-your-muscle-growth.html">5 Muscle Misconceptions That May Stall Your Muscle Growth</a></h4><p style="display: inline;" class="webReader-styled">
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The weather outside may be frightful, but soon it will be delightful! Kick-start your summer six-pack with this awesome abs plan.</p></div></div></div>

3 Benefits Of Weightlifting Complexes And 3 Sample Complexes!

The hottest topic on most people’s lips is fat loss, whether they’re getting back in shape for the New Year, getting ready for spring break, or getting into that old dress or their favorite pair of jeans. This is the perfect time to recalibrate, refocus, and recommit to your fat-loss program.

One of the best training methods in my arsenal is complex or matrix-style training. These methods work extremely well after the strength-boosting component of your program, when you’ve already made a concerted effort to build some muscle.

I first learned about complexes back in the late 1990s when I was just getting started in the iron game. Istvan Javorek is widely regarded as the pioneer of complexes, and while he used them to improve the Olympic lifts, I feel as though they’re great as a workout finisher as well.

But before we dive head first into a few sample complexes or matrices, let’s first discuss why you might choose to include them in your workouts.

Complex or matrix-style training work extremely well after you’ve already made a concerted effort to build some muscle.

BENEFITS OF COMPLEXES

Complexes and matrices have quite a few benefits, but here are just a few that spring to mind:

1 They’re Fat Loss Friendly

This is an obvious benefit for long duration, low intensity cardio targets such as improved cardiovascular function and parasympathetic tone etc.—but not maximal fat loss. Anaerobic intervals in the 1:1-1:3 work:rest ratio are some of the best ways to shed body fat. You don’t want to use them all year round, but if you want an all-out assault on body fat, they’re the real deal.

2 They’re Fast

If you’re looking to get lean, more training volume isn’t always better. In fact, this is the ideal time to use faster, more high intensity methods. Complexes are fast and brutally effective, which gets you in and out of the gym quicker.

3 They Efficiently Use Space and Equipment

One of the big issues when it comes to fat loss training is equipment and/or space. Not everyone has sleds, prowlers or a hill in the backyard to train with. Complexes and matrices are not only space efficient—they can often be done in a small area—but theyrequire minimal equipment as well. With only one barbell, a sandbag or even just your bodyweight you can knock out an intense workout.

THE BASICS

When performing complexes, I typically prescribe 24 total reps. My favorite options are either four exercises with six repetitions each, or six exercises with four repetitions each. You’ll perform each exercise for the allotted number of repetitions, and then move immediately into the next exercise. Go through the entire series of exercises, and then rest for the same period of time, or at the most, twice as long as it took you to go through the series.

As your conditioning improves, work to decrease the rest period so that you adhere to a 1:1 work:rest ratio.

SAMPLE COMPLEXES AND MATRICES

Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s look at a couple of sample complexes you can take to the gym and start performing today!

The Basic Barbell Complex

This is a super-efficient complex that even the most seasoned iron veteran will enjoy. All the big lifts are tied into one awesome series!

Front Squat

Week 1: 3 complexes
Week 2: 4 complexes
Week 3: 5 complexes
Week 4: 6 complexes

Complex
  • Romanian Deadlift: 4 reps
  • Bent-Over Row: 4 reps
  • Front Squat: 4 reps
  • Push Press: 4 reps
  • Good Morning: 4 reps
  • Back Squat: 4 reps

Bodyweight Leg Matrix

If you struggle with body fat in the legs, this lower-body matrix will help you blowtorch it like no other!

Lunge

Week 1: 2 matrices
Week 2: 3 matrices
Week 3: 3 matrices
Week 4: 4 matrices

Matrix
  • Vertical Jump: 6 reps
  • Squat: 6 reps
  • Step-Up: 6 reps
  • Lunge: 6 reps

Sandbag Complex

Last but not least, if you want something a bit different, give this sandbag complex a shot. It’s not only fun, but the sandbag also creates some unique challenges due to its non-conforming nature.

Overhead Press

Week 1: 3 complexes
Week 2: 4 complexes
Week 3: 5 complexes
Week 4: 6 complexes

Complex
  • Sandbag Shouldering: 6 reps
  • Bent-Over Row: 6 reps
  • Romanian Deadlift: 6 reps
  • Overhead Press: 6 reps

SUMMARY

As you can see, fat loss training doesn’t have to be complex (pun intended). Instead, basic exercises performed in series at a breakneck pace can absolutely help you achieve your goals quickly.

For the next month, finish at least one, if not two, of your workouts with one of the complexes or matrices outlined above. I guarantee it’s going to fast track your fat loss progress, and get you on your way to the lean, sculpted physique you’ve been looking for!


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Boot Camp Fit: Grenade’s Rhino CrossFit Boot Camp Workout

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Sculpt Your Six-Pack Now: Early Summer Abs Workout

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Original post – 

3 Benefits Of Weightlifting Complexes And 3 Sample Complexes!

Posted in Bodybuilding, Exercises, Nutrition, Training MethodsComments Off on 3 Benefits Of Weightlifting Complexes And 3 Sample Complexes!

<div id="DPG" webReader="118.243299968"><div class="side-bar" webReader="-16.1785714286"><div class="c11"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/al-kavadlo-vital-stats.jpg"/></div><h3 class="article-title c12">Vital Stats</h3><a href="http://bodyspace.bodybuilding.com/AlKavadlo/" rel="nofollow" target="_blank" title="Bodyspace"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/bodyspace-social-icon.png" width="20" height="20" border="0" class="c13"/></a><a href="https://www.facebook.com/pages/AlKavadlocom-Were-working-out/205151489148" rel="nofollow" target="_blank" title="Facebook"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/facebook-social-icon.png" width="20" height="20" border="0" class="c14"/></a><a href="https://twitter.com/AlKavadlo" rel="nofollow" target="_blank" title="Twitter"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/twitter-social-icon.png" width="20" height="20" border="0" class="c14"/></a><a href="http://www.youtube.com/user/alkavadlo" rel="nofollow" target="_blank" title="YouTube"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/youtube-social-icon.png" width="20" height="20" border="0" class="c14"/></a><p><strong>Name:</strong> Al Kavadlo, CSCS<br /><strong>Location:</strong> New York, NY<br /><strong>Occupation:</strong> Trainer, author, lead instructor of Progressive Calisthenics Certification<br /><strong>Website:</strong> <a href="www.alkavadlo.com" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">www.alkavadlo.com</a></p></div><p>"<em>The great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie—deliberate, contrived, and dishonest—but the myth—persistent, persuasive, and unrealistic. Too often we hold fast to the clichés of our forebears.</em>"<br />- John F. Kennedy</p><p>It's no secret that bodyweight training is my preferred method of working out. As someone who has touted the benefits of calisthenics for a long time, it's exciting to see bodyweight training finally gain some attention from the mainstream. Of course, along with the recent boom in popularity, bodyweight strength training has also experienced some backlash.</p><p>For every person who writes to me about the progress they've achieved with bodyweight training—and how much fun they've had doing it—there's someone else who has concerns about calisthenics. Misinformation persists and when repeated enough, certain myths can become pervasive. Often it's easier to believe the myth than face the truth, especially when the truth lines up with any preconceived biases you might have.</p><p>With that in mind, here are some of the most common misconceptions I've heard about bodyweight strength training. Let the debunking begin!</p><h3 class="article-title">Myth 1: You can't build mass.</h3><p>Since an individual's strength-to-mass ratio has to be favorable to practice high-level calisthenics, many of the folks you see performing them tend to be on the smaller side. I am not particularly massive—a fact pointed out to me often on the Internet—and neither are many other notable bodyweight practitioners, so it's easy to assume that calisthenics can't get you jacked. However, one need look no further than YouTube legends like <a href="http://www.youtube.com/user/HannibalForKing1" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Hannibal for King</a> or Bar Brothers' <a href="http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCSeD0P39ujjI_EXVY5Y6BIQ" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Lazar Novovic</a> to see proof of the potential to put on size using bodyweight training.</p><iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/rRlqSvLEfIQ" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe><p>Gaining mass has more to do with your diet and your genetics than whether you focus on weights or calisthenics. As long as they get the proper stimulation to grow, your muscles don't really know if the resistance comes from an external object or not. If you train in the appropriate rep range—for hypertrophy, it's somewhere between 6-15 reps with approximately 65-85 percent of your one-rep max, depending on who you ask—get enough food, and sleep eight hours per night, you have all you need to get as huge as your genes will allow.</p><h3 class="article-title">Myth 2: You can't achieve high levels of strength.</h3><p>Just like many people underestimate the mass-building potential of calisthenics basics like pull-ups, push-ups and dips, it is also often assumed that those exercises are the end of the line for building strength with just bodyweight. This is simply not true! Pull-ups, push-ups, and dips are just the beginning. There are many more advanced bodyweight exercises that can build much higher levels of strength.</p><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/4-bodyweight-myths-debunked-1.jpg" width="560" height="274" border="0"/><p>"There are many more advanced bodyweight exercises that can build much higher levels of strength."</p><p>If your primary objective is pure strength, you want to find exercises that challenge you in the 5-or-less rep range. For experienced strength-trainees, moves like one-arm push-ups , pistol squats , and front lever progressions are excellent choices.</p><p>Remember that in strength training, your body only knows that it is being asked to exert muscular force against resistance. The source of that resistance is mostly irrelevant. Though it's easy to simply add weight to a barbell, once you understand the subtleties of manipulating leverage in order to progress or regress a bodyweight exercise, there's no limit to the amount of strength you can achieve!</p><h3 class="article-title">Myth 3: Tall people can't do advanced calisthenics.</h3><p>While taller folks—particularly people with long arms and/or legs—are at a slight mechanical disadvantage for many exercises, many people achieve extremely high levels of calisthenic strength in spite of their height. The idea that a lanky build is unfavorable for strength training is not unique to calisthenics; people with long arms struggle with leverage on both bench presses and push-ups.</p><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/4-bodyweight-myths-debunked-2.jpg" width="560" height="309" border="0"/><p>"At 5-foot-11, I'm tall for calisthenics, but it hasn't stopped me from achieving great things in the world of bodyweight training."</p><p>Though many of us lack the ideal genetic predisposition to excel at the highest level of calisthenics, we all have the potential to exceed our current capabilities. It's healthier and more productive to focus on improving yourself, rather than dwelling on your perceived limitations. At 5-foot-11, I'm tall for calisthenics, but it hasn't stopped me from achieving great things in the world of bodyweight training. If you want to use your height as an excuse, that's your prerogative, but I'd rather focus on what I <em>am</em> capable of, which is a lot!</p><h3 class="article-title">Myth 4: Women can't do pull-ups.</h3><p>Learning to do a pull-up can be a challenge for anyone, but the task tends to be especially daunting for women. Pull-ups require a lot of upper-body strength and women simply don't have the same genetic potential for upper-body strength as men. This does not, however, mean that women are incapable of pull-ups!</p><iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/t7YIzdSq8TY" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe><p>If you are a lady who wants to dominate pull-ups—my kind of gal—be willing to work a little harder for it! The same advice I gave for tall folks applies here. Instead of focusing on the fact that achieving a pull-up may require more work for you, focus on giving your best effort toward each small step along the way. If you're consistent with your training and chip away slowly, a full pull-up can be yours in time. Be patient, stay focused, and remember that good things come to people who train!</p><p><a href="http://www.dragondoor.com/b73/?apid=4e8cb1ea167b0" rel="nofollow"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/al-kavadlo-streetching-your-boundaries-book-banner.jpg" width="560" height="144"/></a></p><br /><br class="c15"/><h3 class="article-title">Recommended For You</h3><div class="c18" webReader="6.68632075472"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/stretching-for-strength-a-better-approach-flexibility-training.html"><img src="images/2014/stretching-for-strength-smallbox.jpg" alt="" width="200" height="114"/></a><div class="c17" webReader="8.91509433962"><h4 class="c16"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/stretching-for-strength-a-better-approach-flexibility-training.html">STRETCHING FOR STRENGTH</a></h4><p style="display: inline;" class="webReader-styled">
Reports of stretching's demise have been greatly exaggerated. In this excerpt from Al Kavadlo's new book, the bodyweight training chief helps you build an effective, personalized practice!</p></div></div><div class="c18" webReader="6.58823529412"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/pistol-perfect-one-legged-squats-and-beyond.html"><img src="images/2013/pistol-squats-and-beyond-smallbox.jpg" alt="" width="200" height="114"/></a><div class="c17" webReader="9.05882352941"><h4 class="c16"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/pistol-perfect-one-legged-squats-and-beyond.html">PISTOL SQUATS AND BEYOND</a></h4><p style="display: inline;" class="webReader-styled">
Single-leg squats are a journey, not just a move. commit to a classic lift for strength, balance, and mobility!</p></div></div><div class="c18" webReader="5.72282608696"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/push-yourself-one-arm-push-up-and-beyond.html"><img src="images/2013/one-arm-push-yourself-smallbox.jpg" alt="" width="200" height="114"/></a><div class="c17" webReader="7.04347826087"><h4 class="c16"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/push-yourself-one-arm-push-up-and-beyond.html">ONE-ARM PUSH YOURSELF!</a></h4><p style="display: inline;" class="webReader-styled">
Sometimes the toughest strength moves don't involve any iron at all. Heed the call of the one-arm push-up and discover how tough progressive calisthenics can be!</p></div></div></div><div class="padded-content article-content mod-about-the-author" id="article-about-author" webReader="37.5957446809"><h4 class="article-section-header">About The Author</h4><div class="ata-left-column" webReader="6.91304347826"><div class="ata-author-name"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/al-kavadlo.html">Al Kavadlo, CSCS</a></div><div class="author-gradient-button"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/al-kavadlo.html">VIEW AUTHOR PAGE</a></div><p class="ata-author-summary">Al Kavadlo, CSCS is one of the world's leading experts in bodyweight strength training and calisthenics.</p></div><div class="ata-right-column"><div class="ata-author-image-frame"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/al-kavadlo.html"><img src="images/2013/writer-al-kavadlo-sig-new.jpg" alt=""/></a></div><div class="ata-view-all-articles-link"><ul class="bb-chevron-list bold-type"><li><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/al-kavadlo.html#articles" class="bold-type">View All Articles By This Author</a></li>
</ul></div></div></div>

Bodyweight Bust! Four Bodyweight Training Myths Debunked

The great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie—deliberate, contrived, and dishonest—but the myth—persistent, persuasive, and unrealistic. Too often we hold fast to the clichés of our forebears.
– John F. Kennedy

It’s no secret that bodyweight training is my preferred method of working out. As someone who has touted the benefits of calisthenics for a long time, it’s exciting to see bodyweight training finally gain some attention from the mainstream. Of course, along with the recent boom in popularity, bodyweight strength training has also experienced some backlash.

For every person who writes to me about the progress they’ve achieved with bodyweight training—and how much fun they’ve had doing it—there’s someone else who has concerns about calisthenics. Misinformation persists and when repeated enough, certain myths can become pervasive. Often it’s easier to believe the myth than face the truth, especially when the truth lines up with any preconceived biases you might have.

With that in mind, here are some of the most common misconceptions I’ve heard about bodyweight strength training. Let the debunking begin!

Myth 1: You can’t build mass.

Since an individual’s strength-to-mass ratio has to be favorable to practice high-level calisthenics, many of the folks you see performing them tend to be on the smaller side. I am not particularly massive—a fact pointed out to me often on the Internet—and neither are many other notable bodyweight practitioners, so it’s easy to assume that calisthenics can’t get you jacked. However, one need look no further than YouTube legends like Hannibal for King or Bar Brothers’ Lazar Novovic to see proof of the potential to put on size using bodyweight training.

Gaining mass has more to do with your diet and your genetics than whether you focus on weights or calisthenics. As long as they get the proper stimulation to grow, your muscles don’t really know if the resistance comes from an external object or not. If you train in the appropriate rep range—for hypertrophy, it’s somewhere between 6-15 reps with approximately 65-85 percent of your one-rep max, depending on who you ask—get enough food, and sleep eight hours per night, you have all you need to get as huge as your genes will allow.

Myth 2: You can’t achieve high levels of strength.

Just like many people underestimate the mass-building potential of calisthenics basics like pull-ups, push-ups and dips, it is also often assumed that those exercises are the end of the line for building strength with just bodyweight. This is simply not true! Pull-ups, push-ups, and dips are just the beginning. There are many more advanced bodyweight exercises that can build much higher levels of strength.

“There are many more advanced bodyweight exercises that can build much higher levels of strength.”

If your primary objective is pure strength, you want to find exercises that challenge you in the 5-or-less rep range. For experienced strength-trainees, moves like one-arm push-ups , pistol squats , and front lever progressions are excellent choices.

Remember that in strength training, your body only knows that it is being asked to exert muscular force against resistance. The source of that resistance is mostly irrelevant. Though it’s easy to simply add weight to a barbell, once you understand the subtleties of manipulating leverage in order to progress or regress a bodyweight exercise, there’s no limit to the amount of strength you can achieve!

Myth 3: Tall people can’t do advanced calisthenics.

While taller folks—particularly people with long arms and/or legs—are at a slight mechanical disadvantage for many exercises, many people achieve extremely high levels of calisthenic strength in spite of their height. The idea that a lanky build is unfavorable for strength training is not unique to calisthenics; people with long arms struggle with leverage on both bench presses and push-ups.

“At 5-foot-11, I’m tall for calisthenics, but it hasn’t stopped me from achieving great things in the world of bodyweight training.”

Though many of us lack the ideal genetic predisposition to excel at the highest level of calisthenics, we all have the potential to exceed our current capabilities. It’s healthier and more productive to focus on improving yourself, rather than dwelling on your perceived limitations. At 5-foot-11, I’m tall for calisthenics, but it hasn’t stopped me from achieving great things in the world of bodyweight training. If you want to use your height as an excuse, that’s your prerogative, but I’d rather focus on what I am capable of, which is a lot!

Myth 4: Women can’t do pull-ups.

Learning to do a pull-up can be a challenge for anyone, but the task tends to be especially daunting for women. Pull-ups require a lot of upper-body strength and women simply don’t have the same genetic potential for upper-body strength as men. This does not, however, mean that women are incapable of pull-ups!

If you are a lady who wants to dominate pull-ups—my kind of gal—be willing to work a little harder for it! The same advice I gave for tall folks applies here. Instead of focusing on the fact that achieving a pull-up may require more work for you, focus on giving your best effort toward each small step along the way. If you’re consistent with your training and chip away slowly, a full pull-up can be yours in time. Be patient, stay focused, and remember that good things come to people who train!


Recommended For You

STRETCHING FOR STRENGTH

Reports of stretching’s demise have been greatly exaggerated. In this excerpt from Al Kavadlo’s new book, the bodyweight training chief helps you build an effective, personalized practice!

PISTOL SQUATS AND BEYOND

Single-leg squats are a journey, not just a move. commit to a classic lift for strength, balance, and mobility!

ONE-ARM PUSH YOURSELF!

Sometimes the toughest strength moves don’t involve any iron at all. Heed the call of the one-arm push-up and discover how tough progressive calisthenics can be!

About The Author

Al Kavadlo, CSCS is one of the world’s leading experts in bodyweight strength training and calisthenics.

This article is from: 

Bodyweight Bust! Four Bodyweight Training Myths Debunked

Posted in Bodybuilding, Exercises, Nutrition, Weight TrainingComments Off on Bodyweight Bust! Four Bodyweight Training Myths Debunked


Paige Hathaway

2 hours 21 minutes ago

If kissing burns 6 calories per minute....
How many calories do you think laughing burns? 🤔

Paige Hathaway

6 hours 41 minutes ago

Hey everyone, really excited to announce I am going to be in the Middle East @dubaimuscleshow on from December 8th - 9th at the Dubai World Trade Centre. Really excited to see all of you, first time ever in Dubai and the first time I am meeting all my Middle Eastern fans.
I can’t wait! 😁 Get your tickets now !!

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