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Having great legs whether you are male or female is truly awe inspiriring. Buliding great legs is very hard work. Genetically gifted people with great leg structure will have an easier time. Check with a physician to see if you are physically capable of training this hard. The legs are your largest body part and and needs to be attacked from all angles. In my experience in training legs I had to learn some lessons the hard way. I am going to give you a bit of a twist on warm ups so you can sit in a chair without knee pain. Let's start:
Leg Curls: I learned by starting with leg curls I could warm up my knees better before lifting heavy weight. Using a leg curl machine start by doing a set with a weight that you can do 15 repetitions with, then, 10-12 repetions increasing weight, then, 8-10 repetitions with increased weight. Position your toes in, toes out and toes straight.
Leg Extentions: For warm up purposes I also do leg extentions before any heavy lifting. Seated leg extention. Do 1st set with a weight you can do 15 repetitions, then, 10-12, then, 8-10 increasing the weight each set. Again position toes in, toes out, toes straight.
Squats: This is one of the best execises to do for strength, size and shape. Squat rack: Start with a weight that you can perform 15 repetions with, then 10-12, then, 8-10, increasing the weight each set. This exercise needs to be done correctly to avoid injury of the lower back. Balance yourself and keep your feet straight about shoulder width. Full movement.
Leg Press: On the leg press machine again do a weight that you can do 15 repetitions, then, 10-12, then, 8-10. Position your toes in, out, and straight. Full movement.
Hack Squat: On the hack squat machine do a weight you can do 15 repetitions with, then, 10-12, then, 8-10. Half movement.
Calves Seated: On the seated calf machine use a weight you can do 15-18 repetions with all three sets. Calves are used everyday and are harder to stimulate. Toe positions, in, out, and straight.
Standing Calves: Standing calf raise machine use a weight you can do 15-18 repetions all three sets. Toe posititions in, out, and straight.
To build mass you must eat appropriately using nutrient dense nutrition. To use this routine for shaping Lower the weight and Raise the Intensity with shorter rest periods. As with all routines when beginning you need to consult a proffssional trainer to help set up your routine. Thanks, Reid.
Building massive and powerful deltoids is easy when you follow this routine. You will need to make sure you get plenty of rest in between workouts and eat nutrient dense meals high in quality protein. The deltoids are worked to a degree when you do biceps, chest and back exercises so we really want to isolate them with this routine. Lets get started.
1. Warm up the deltoids before you start by doing light side lateral raises with dumb bells. Do this for 2 sets of 15-18 repetitions.
2. Use a Smith machine and a bench. 4 sets of of seated front presses using weight that you can do 12-15 repetitions, 10-12 repetitions, 8-10 repetitions, and 6-8 repetitions. Increase the weight each set.
3. Side lateral raise. This can be done several ways but let's do dumb bell side lateral raises. Start with dumb bells in front of you and raise them up to parallel with your shoulders. Do not use momentum and do not go above parallel as this will cause an impingement in your joint and can result in injury. Do 3 sets of 10-12 repetitions, 8-10 repetition and 6-8 repetitions increase the weight each set.
4. Front dumb bell raises 3 sets 10-12 repetitions, 8-10 repetitions, 6-8 repetitions. increasing the weight each set. Again do not go above shoulder parallel.
5. Rear deltoids. Use an incline bench and lay face down and lift the dumb bells with your thumbs down up to shoulder parallel. 3 sets 10-12 repetitions, 8-10 repetitions. 6-8 repetitions. increase the weight with each set.
This will give you a tremendous workout if you keep your intensity high with little rest between sets. I can't stress enough the impingement factor when working deltoids. I do not recommend behind the neck presses for this reason. YOU WILL BE INJURED! Momentum takes the intensity out of the workout so don't swing the dumb bells. I hope this helps you. Thanks, Reid.
Building a massive powerful back takes work. It is one of the largest muscle groups in the body. Not only do you have to use heavy weight but you have to be careful of inury at the same time. This can be a fine line to walk when training. The back is made up of several muscle groups that need to be attacked when training. Training the back is exausting to the body and should be trained on PULL days of a split training routine. Starting any intensive workout my warning is to make sure you are physically capable of training this hard. If you don't know check with your physician, allow adequate rest between workouts and eat nutrient dense high protein meals for growth. Let's begin:
1. Latissimus: To work your lats you need to begin with a warm up on a seated cable pull down machine. Take a comfortable grip with a weight you can do 15 reps with to begin. Sit down with your knees secure under the pad and pull the weight toward your chest. Keep the back straight and do not use momentum on this exercise. Momentum will cause a BALLISTIC movement and injury can result. Allow the lats to do the work. After a warm up continue with three additional sets of 12-15 reps, 10-12 reps, and 8-10 reps. Controlled movements are best.
2. Rhomboids: I like a seated row for these and their are several ways of rowing that you might like better. I prefer to have my chest against a pad on a selectorized weight machine for support of the lower back (which I have issues). These can be done bent over with a barbell or your knee on a bench bent over with a dumb bell. You should be warmed up by now so 3 sets with a weight that you can do 12-15 reps, 10-12 reps, 8-10 reps. Row the weight from arms length into your lat and return, again this is a controlled movement.
3. Trapezius: This exercise can also be done with a barbell or dumb bell and even done one arm. With a barbell gripped in front of you with palms down row the weight upward to your chin smoothly and control the weight while returning to start positon. Start with 12-15 reps then 10-12 reps, 8-10 reps. Warning! Do not allow your elbows to go above parallel as this will cause an impingement in the joint and can cause injury.
4. Spinal Erectors: This exercise can be done with or without weight. With weight you can do deadlifts BUT YOU MUST BE CAREFUL. With a barbell on the floor you plant your feet just inside shoulder width and take a grip just outside your legs and with your lower back engaged lift straight up with the weight until you are straight. Lower the weight in a controlled manner back to the floor. 3 sets 12-15 reps, 10-12 reps, 8-10 reps. Without weight use the hyperextention bench with your hands on your chest keeping your lower back engaged and bend forward with a full movement and return Slow and Smooth 3 sets !2-15.
All these exercises must be done correctly and in a controlled manner. Seek a Professional Trainer to set you up on a mass building routine for your back.You will be huge! Thanks Reid
Most of the weight loss diets out there today follow calorie restriction which is normally less than what a person consumes daily. Following a calorie restricted diet will result in weight loss. Structured eating plan diets also work. They give you set meals at certain times and this keeps you from grazing all day. According to scientific research many of the different diets that are out there are Macro and Micro nutrient deficient for the training athlete or the person on a fitness or athletic program. They are too low in protein or carbohydrate and sometimes too high in fat. Lowering your protein calories can result in muscle mass loss which can lower your overall metabolism. They can be deficient in essential nutrients which can leave the dieter in poor health. Lowering your metabolism while dieting is dangerous because when you return to a normal calorie intake you gain weight easier than before.
Calories in and calories out seems easy enough. Beware! You must put nutrient dense food in your body. If you have an exercise program that works your over all body and leaves you depleted from stores in your cells you must re-energize the cells. The only way to do this is with nutrient dense food and supplements. Athletes know they must eat well and supplement to get to where they want to be in their sport. When you take on the title of everyday or every other day fitness performer or athlete the rules of dieting changes for you. Portion sizes, frequency of meals, timing of meals become part of your training regimen everyday.
If you have never trained before or are overweight or obese please check with your doctor before starting any diet or exercise program for your own safety. Once cleared go to a fitness professional in your health club for a structured exercise program and seek out a nutritional specialist to help set you up on a nutrition plan that will work for life. Health is a lifetime commitment and takes dedication and work to achieve your goals. Do it right this time around. Fad diet results are usually short lived and you may end up worse than you were before. Make a decision today to eat right and exercise. You will be rewarded for your efforts. Thanks Reid
The most crucial area of the body to be trained is the core. It is the body's foundation just like the foundation of a building. The stronger your core the stronger you can become throughout your body. Core muscles are used substantially everyday and need to be trained in some way each day. Muscles that are used each day are harder to develop like calves. With core muscles higher repetitions work best especially for abs. Abdominal muscles can develop like any other muscle and while we all want that six pack we must be careful not to allow the trunk area to grow in the process. Low reps with higher weight will make your abs grow. Keep your reps and sets high to keep your waistline small.
The best thing I did when training my core was to attack it from all angles. If you are a beginner you must start off slow and make sure you develop the muscles before exerting to much effort and injuring yourself. Check with a physician to make sure you are capable of doing core work before starting. Nutrition is key in developing rock hard abs and lowering body fat. The body does not spot reduce well and all core work must be accompanied by training the rest of the body as well and doing cardio exercise for above 30-40 minutes a day. With that said let's begin:
Abdominal Crunches: The abdominal crunch focuses on flattening, toning and strengthening your front abdominal muscles and lower back. This exercise can be performed on the floor or an exercise ball. Keep your abdominal muscles tight as you perform the crunch to prevent lower back injury. Interlace you fingers behind your neck BUT do not pull on your neck while performing this exercise. Keep your feet planted firmly on the floor while lying on your back and allow the abdominal muscles to contract while keeping your lower back on the floor. Higher reps when you are conditioned 3-4 sets of 25-50 reps.
Reverse Crunches: Using an exercise ball lying flat on your back put the exercise ball between your legs and lift your knees to your chest 3-4 sets 25-50 reps.
Side crunches: Using an exercise ball lay on your side on the ball keep your neck and head straight and crunch to the side 3-4 sets 25-50- reps and then turn to the other side.
Back extention: Use the excersise ball and lay face down interlacing your fingers behind your neck (keep your balance) and raise your upper torso to paralell and then back down 3-4 sets 25 reps.
These excersises will get you started on a great core workout. Their are many other excersises for the core. You may also include classes in the Group X room or see a professional trainer to expand your workouts. See you in the gym. Thanks Reid.
Their is a "Power Source" within us that we can tap in to for strength that pushes us through. Whatever we as humans want to call it without offending one another or where it is from it is the strength that has persevered for centuries to fight battles or build cities. Human nature is awesome and our bodies are wonderfully made. The cells that the human body are made up of can renew themselves over time to keep us healthy or transform muscles larger or smaller to shape our bodies in to what we want to look like. With hard work and dedicated nutritional habits you can become the best you your genetic structure will allow. With that said not everyone wants to have a Mr or Ms. Universe type body but still wants to be healthy and look fit. This is where we tap in to that " Power Source" that we might need to be used to do a workout when you do not feel like it or push away from the table when the food tastes so good, but you know you have eaten enough. This is the same strength that will give you that extra rep or that extra minute of cardio for the break-through you are looking for. In sports we call on that strength to push us to the winners circle. In life we call on it to help us succeed.
As a Christian I do not ride the fence and I do believe in a higher power that gets me through, it is something that I have always known and there is a Spirit that lives within me that helps lift me up and get me through times of trouble. Not everyone identifies this "power Source" the same way I do or the same way their neighbor does but it is inside all of us that gives each person the strength to move forward in our lives. I am writing about this so everyone knows that this is something that can be built up each day. Each of us has a measure of faith that we use each day. It takes faith to walk out the door each day and drive your car 65 MPH just a few feet from someone going the same speed in the opposite direction. So if we have the faith to do that why would we not have enough faith that if we put in some work we could look the way we want. You are not junk you were made wonderfully like everyone else. Now your problem might just be self esteem, but when we reach deep inside for the power to change, it is there. Remember "No Excuses." Make time for yourself no matter what! You can't take care of your family or loved ones if you are sick and tired and they have to take care of you! Focus on things ahead and above not behind and below and you will succeed. Thanks Reid.
Start in moderation and remember less is more when getting started but consistency is everything. Check with your doctor first and then a good schedule to start is three times a week. The first workout if you are physically capable should consist of 5-20 minutes of cardio in your target heart rate. Get to where you are burning fat and not tearing down muscle tissue. The treadmill is the safest cardio piece for this. Begin by walking on a slight incline or use a recumbent or upright bike. Cardiovascular exercise will help increase your cardio health meaning your heart and lung capacity. For example: walking up the stairs...do you often get winded when you walk up a flight of stairs. Well, someone who is in cardiovascular good health wouldn't have a problem going up a flight of stairs.
The American Heart Association recommends 30 minutes of cardiovascular exercise. You need to learn the 6 components of your cardio program, which are warm up, frequency, intensity, duration, cool down and resistance training. You must know basic nutrition needs and drink plenty of water. Do not neglect stretching for flexibility. Know your target heart rate.
220 minus your age x .65 Women
220 minus your age x .70 Men
If you aren't in your target heart rate and go to fast you will go into what is called an anaerobic state. Basically, you begin to tear down your muscle tissue and will not burn body fat. However if you are in your target heart rate you will burn body fat which is what we all are looking for and you will increase your metabolism as well as increase the volume of your cardiovascular system. Learn how to get the maximum benefits from your cardio workouts, increase intensity when your blood pressure has dropped from doing the same routine for a period of time. Change your aerobic workout periodically by trying different machines or try a Group X class for variety. See a professional trainer to get set up on a great cardio routine. Come to the club regularly and I'll see you there. Thanks Reid
When building a massive chest the muscles need to be trained from all angles. Training your chest will also involve other muscle groups like Deltoids and Triceps so concentration on the Pectoral area is key to development. I believe in training the muscle with as heavy a weight as possible, using high density nutrition and plenty of rest. Short cuts like using steroids is never long lasting and is unsafe at best. With that said lets begin.
One thing about using heavy weight is that you really need to warm up the area trained however remember the 2 other muscle groups involved (Deltoids and Triceps) need to be warmed up also. Training heavy you need to conserve energy for heavier lifting so after our warm up we move to our heavier lifts.
Warm up: Light side lateral raises with dumb bells will help warm up the delt and lighter weight close grip bench presses (Use Smith machine if available) will warm up the Triceps.
Bench press: This this is the foundational exercise to build a powerful, well shaped chest. Start with a lighter weight using a grip that is comfortable and do 15-20 reps on your 1st set. Increase weight each set in increments that you can do 12-15, 8-10, 6-8 and then periodically try a weight never done before. When doing this have a spotter or trainer available to spot you in case you get stuck. Remember "No Injuries." Do a stretch in between sets to elongate the muscles trained.
Incline Press: This exercise can be done with a barbell or dumb bells, I prefer a Smith machine and on alternate days using dumb bells. Again we are working up to a maximum weight. Smith machine: Start with a weight you can do 12-15 reps then increase weight each set. Next set 10-12, 8-10, 6-8 and then a maximum weight periodically. Alternate with heavy dumb bells on different days for increased results. Dumb bells will isolate the area better.
Flat bench fly's: Using dumb bells lay flat on a bench bend at the elbows and lower the weight until you feel a full stretch of the muscle then return slowly to the top squeezing the Pectoral muscle using a weight you can do with great form for 12-15 reps 3-4 sets.
Cable cross overs: Using a weight you can do 12-15 reps with, stand in the middle of the crossover machine using both handles on an upper level and bring the weight evenly down in front of you using the Pectoral muscles. Slow and deliberate repetitions with focus is a must!
Remember: BALLISTIC OR IMPINGING MOVEMENTS WHEN WEIGHT TRAINING YOU WILL BE INJURED!
Feed the muscle cells with nutrient dense food with supplementation and plenty of rest (72 hours between body parts trained) for best results. Thanks Reid.
We are talking today about how to build massive powerful arms! When building size for any body part you must incorporate maximum weight that you can handle with correct form to prevent injuries and nutrition to build mass in the muscle. We start with biceps.
1. Start your exercise by warming up the area with lighter weights 1-2 sets of light dumb bell curls will do nicely.
2. Change to a weight you can only do 8-10 reps and continue with alternate dumb bell curls (seated or standing your preference) 2 sets then increase the weight again for your last set 6-8 reps. 3 sets total with heavy weight.
3. Standing barbell curl with weight you can control 8-10 reps (2 sets) a 3rd set with weight you can control for 6-8 reps. For best results on this exercise use a full range of motion to elongate the bicep muscle.
4. One arm seated concentration curl for shape and definition, your biceps will be fatigued by now so a light weight, slow repetitions is best. 3 sets here here and you are done with biceps.
1. Warm the triceps area with a rope press down with weight you can do 12-15 repetitions for 2 sets.
2. Close grip bench press on the Smith machine for 3 sets. Start with a weight you can do 8-10 reps with for 2 sets then increase the weight for 6-8 reps for the last set.
3. Close grip tricep press downs done correctly meaning keep your elbows close to your body the cable centered on your nose and press from the pec down to a full extension. 2 sets 8-10 reps and 1 set 6-8 reps with maximum weight with good form.
4. One arm reverse cable press down for shaping and defining the muscle done 10-12 reps 3 sets. Use a single handle on the cable machine and concentrate on each rep.
Remember when building mass you must rest and feed the muscles trained. High density nutrition is a must. Give yourself 72 hours between training the same muscle group for best results. Thanks Reid
Knowing the facts about how and where food is grown or how animals are raised and how polluted the air and waters are the only conclusion you can come to about eating and getting all the nutrients you need would be supplementation. Sports nutrition companies have been doing scientific research on their products for years knowing you can't be an outstanding athlete and just eat food. Natural bodybuilders for example burn a lot of calories each day sometimes between 6-8000 calories a day. Breaking that down into digestible meals every 2-3 hours is difficult without the use of high density supplements that break down and digest rapidly and get into their system to feed the muscle cells.
Their are protein supplements and carbohydrate supplements. Vitamins and mineral supplements. To use these supplements effectively you must have knowledge of how your cells utilize nutrition. You must study! Only then should you be spending your hard earned money on supplements. Know what vitamins do. Know what minerals you need. Know how much protein you require to keep what muscle you do have and how much more you need to build muscle. Know how many carbohydrate grams it takes to give you energy to train or how many fat grams your body needs a day. The knowledge on these areas are vast and it takes perseverance to know how to keep your body running in a healthy state.
Exercise is important but I would have to say that nutrition takes top billing and is the key to health. People just walking, and eating a well balanced diet may not have to supplement like someone doing advanced training exercises. I would not trust my health totally on food. I supplement daily and try to eat as good as possible and I still come up deficient in some areas. As you age supplementation becomes more important than ever. It is harder to digest certain foods and get the nutrients into your system. Talk to a professional and see what supplementation can do for you. Thanks Reid.
- bio:Reid has trained for over 42 years; been a competitive bodybuilder & Mr. Utah; is owner/partner in Better Bodies, and has a Christian Counseling Psychology PhD.
- location:Denver, Colorado
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