Friday, August 29, 2008

Back Workout Weight Training Exercises

Back training is one of my favourite workouts and is a critical component to developing a strong muscular body.

Often times novices will not give their backs workouts the attention it needs because the back is not as visible as other muscle groups like the chest, arms, and legs. But you’ll find that as your back gets stronger, the rest of your body will get stronger as well.

A well developed back will provide a good base support for chest exercises like the bench presses and flyes. And it will also make you stronger with leg exercises such as squats and lunges.

In the video below I go over a complete back workout routine.

In this video I did…

Bent Over Barbell Rows
3 sets of 10 reps with 185 lbs.

V-Bar Pull Downs
3 sets of 10 reps with 165 lbs.

Hammer Strength Chest Supported Rows
3 sets of 10 reps with 3 plates per side.

Bodyweight Rows
3 sets of 10 reps

Hyper Extensions
3 sets of 10 reps with a 45 lbs. plate
+ 3 sets of 10 reps with bodyweight.

Mountain Bike Riding Pictures...

On Thursday it was a beautiful sunny day so I just had to get outside and go for a mountain bike ride. I love riding in the woods and through the trails, it is so much fun that it doesn't even feel like cardio. I can be gone for a couple hours at a time and it just flys by... where as if I did cardio in doors I'd be constantly watching the clock and counting down the minutes waiting for it to be over with.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Back Workout...

Today I trained back with a personal training client of mine. When possible I like to train with my clients. This helps them with their workouts because they can better see how to do the exercises while I’m training. And it works great for me because I get my workouts done and out of the way at the same time.

My workout consisted of…

A cardio warm up on the elliptical machine for 10 minutes.

Chest Supported T-Bar Rows:
3 sets of 6 reps with 4 plates

V-Bar Pull Downs:
3 sets of 6 reps with 200 lbs.

Face Pulls:
3 sets of 6 reps with 160 lbs.

Bodyweight Rows:
5 sets of 10 reps (50 total reps)

Note: all exercises are proceeded with 1-2 lighter warm up sets.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Chest and Shoulder Workout…

On Wednesday of this week I worked chest and shoulders using the bench press assistant workout from my bench press training tips newsletter at:

The workout went like this…

Bradford Presses:
65 x 10 reps
85 x 10 reps
105 x 10 reps
85 x 20 reps
65 x 20 reps

Reverse Grip Smith Machine Bench Press:
135 x 6 reps
225 x 6 reps
275 x 6 reps
315 x 6 reps
315 x 6 reps

DB Bench Press:
65’s x 10 reps
85’s x 10 reps
100’s x 10 reps
100’s x 10 reps

Elbows Out Tricep Extensions:
30’s x 10
40’s x 10
40’s x 10

Push Ups:
100 total reps

super-setted with

Face Pulls:
100 lbs. x 100 total reps

This is a very effective routine for strengthening the muscles used when benching, without actually doing the bench press. In fact I know of several guys who have increased their max bench by 20+ lbs. within a month of following this routine.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Should you wear a weight lifting belt or not?

There was a recent study done where Dutch researchers found that there is no real benefit to wearing lumbar support. Wearing a weight lifting belt during your workouts will NOT help to prevent or treat back injuries. For the majority of the time you are better off just forgetting the weight lifting belt altogether.

The only exception would be when performing heavy low rep squats and deadlifts. With these exercises the belt will help with improving your exercise form. Because when you wear a belt and push your stomach out against the front of the belt this will create a more solid core base that will help you lift more and feel stronger when squatting and deadlifting.

The best weight lifting belts for providing core support are the powerlifting style belts that are the same width all the way around. Not the typcial bodybuilding belts that are thick in the back and thin in the front. The reason being that the support comes from expanding your stomach and pushing out against the belt. Not from excess padding in the back of the belt.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Cruisin Down The Highway…

Today was a beautiful sunny day. We haven’t had many nice days during the month of August, most of the time it has been just rain and fog. So myself and Patricia left work early, passed on going to the gym and went for a motorcycle ride instead... (we can make up the workout on a rainy day :-) It was a great ride and I had a blast. Hopefully the good weather holds up and we’ll be able to get in several more rides before summer is over.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Muscle Building Nutrition - Part 2

In part 1 of the Muscle Building Nutrition video presentation I covered proper nutrient intake of protein, carbohydrates, fat, and water. And the amounts of each that you should be consuming daily based on your individual needs and fitness goals.

In this second part I’m going to outline some practical ways that you can fit proper bodybuilding nutrition into your busy lifestyle with a complete meal-by-meal eating plan.

Note: you can watch the first part of the Muscle Building Nutrition video presentation at:

Friday, August 15, 2008

12,000 Calorie A Day Diet...!

Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps needs to eat 12,000 calories per day just to keep up with his raging fast metabolism... Just check out the article below that was published in New York Post.

Swimming sensation Michael Phelps has an Olympic recipe for success - and it involves eating a staggering 12,000 calories a day.

"Eat, sleep and swim. That's all I can do," Phelps, who won two more gold medals today, told NBC when asked what he needs to win medals. "Get some calories into my system and try to recover the best I can."

By comparison, the average man of the same age needs to ingest about 2,000 calories a day.

Phelps, 23, will swim 17 times over nine days of competition at the Beijing Games - meaning that he will need all the calories he can shovel in his mouth in order to keep his energy levels high.

Phelps' diet - which involves ingesting 4,000 calories every time he sits down for a meal - resembles that of a reckless overeater rather than an Olympian.

Phelps lends a new spin to the phrase "Breakfast of Champions" by starting off his day by eating three fried-egg sandwiches loaded with cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, fried onions and mayonnaise.

He follows that up with two cups of coffee, a five-egg omelet, a bowl of grits, three slices of French toast topped with powdered sugar and three chocolate-chip pancakes.

At lunch, Phelps gobbles up a pound of enriched pasta and two large ham and cheese sandwiches slathered with mayo on white bread - capping off the meal by chugging about 1,000 calories worth of energy drinks.

For dinner, Phelps really loads up on the carbs - what he needs to give him plenty of energy for his five-hours-a-day, six-days-a-week regimen - with a pound of pasta and an entire pizza.

He washes all that down with another 1,000 calories worth of energy drinks.

Phelps remains on course to at least equal Mark Spitz's record of seven gold medals won at the 1972 Munich Games.

At these Summer Games, a typical day for Phelps starts with a 5 a.m. wake-up call. Most of his races have taken place between 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. ET when in China - 12 hours ahead of East Coast time.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Positions of Flexion Arm Workout Exercises

This is a follow up to the previous positions of flexion arm workout video that I posted earlier at:

In this video I'm going to show you how I use progressive overload to make steady progress from workout to workout.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Why Almost Everyone Is DEAD WRONG About Achieving 6-Pack Abs

Yesterday I posted about the long-awaited release of Sean Nalewanyj's
"Real Deal Body Transformation System".

It's the explosive new fat burning success kit that
everyone is talking about, and I REALLY want to
make sure that you check it out for yourself.


Because in all the countless hours I've spent
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I can honestly say that this is one of the most
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And now you can get a sneak peak preview of this
valuable fat shredding information for yourself
because Sean Nalewanyj has just posted a video
presentation covering the biggest mistakes that
people make when it comes to developing ripped
6-pack abs.

You can watch the 6-Pack Abs Video be clicking on the link below:

How To Get 6 Pack Abs Video

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

How To Burn Fat...

It's not very often that I'll recommend any fat burning
program in my Bodybuilding Blog or in my newsletters because
most of the so called fat burning programs out there are
complete garbage... but what I'm about to share with you
is totally different and you need to hear about it.

Even as an experienced bodybuilder and fitness trainer
myself, I'm always looking for new tips and tricks that
will help me get better results with my own training.
Then in turn I can share what I've learned to help you
get better muscle building and fat burning results for

So when my good friend and fellow bodybuilder, Sean Nalewanyj,
told me about his "Real Deal Body Transformation System"
I was all ears... I had to find out what juicy tips and fat
shredding strategies he came up with.

You've probably read some of Sean's popular articles
on my website. I've been a fan of his work for years.
Sean Nalewanyj is one of the few fitness experts online
that I know, like, and trust. He not only talks the talk,
but he walks the walk and knows his stuff inside out.

Anyway, I managed to get my hands on a copy of his
brand new fat burning program a few weeks ago and
I was just blown away with what he reveals. I've
even started applying some of his techniques myself
with solid results.

Sean doesn't repeat the same old fat loss BS and
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Sean's "How To Burn Fat" system has already been
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The most EXCITING part is...

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I honestly think you should DROP EVERYTHING
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Sunday, August 3, 2008

Bodyweight Rows For A Bigger Back...

I’m a big believer of including bodyweight exercises in your workouts to help maximize muscle growth. Exercises where you move your entire body through space are much more demanding and provide a greater amount of nero-muscular activation then exercises where you just move your limbs.

This is why squats are harder then leg presses, pull ups harder then pull downs, etc.

One of my favorite bodyweight exercises for building a wide muscular back is chin ups or pull ups. For years my back workouts would often include up to 50 reps of pull ups. I’d do sets of 5-10 reps using different grips until I completed 50 total reps.

But this past January I suffered a serious muscle tear in my teres major and tricep tie in area and this has really hindered my back workouts. In fact I haven’t been able to do a full pull up with my bodyweight in over 7 months because it is just too much stress on my previously torn muscles.

I’ve been looking for an alternative exercise that combines the benefits of bodyweight movements and will still allow me to work my back intensely without over stretching my muscles. And the exercise that I came up with is bodyweight rows.

They are almost like doing an inverted push up. Bodyweight rows are to your back, what push ups are to your chest.

To set up for this exercise I like to use the smith machine and set the bar so that it is about waist height. I’ll then place a flat exercise bench about 4-5 feet away from the smith machine bar. The smith machine works best because the bar will be solid and stay in place during the entire exercise.

Get in position by gripping the bar with a slightly wider then shoulder width grip and place your feet on the exercise bench. Keeping your body straight, row yourself up until your chest touches the bar and then lower yourself to the starting position and repeat.

The benefits of this exercise is that it works muscles of the back hard and will allow you to perform more reps then you could with regular pull ups because the mechanics of the exercise place you in a stronger position and you are not lifting your entire bodyweight.

You should give bodyweight rows a try for your next back workout. They work great as either an overall back warm up exercise or as a finishing movement to really pump up the lats at the end of your workouts.

Can Creatine Make You Smarter?

No doubt you’ve heard of the muscle building benefits of taking creatine. But it may help make you smarter as well. There was a research study published in the British Journal Proceedings of the Royal Society: Bio-Logical Sciences. Where test subjects were given either 5 grams of creatine, or a placebo. They were then quizzed on their on their ability to remember and repeat long sequences of random numbers in reverse order and they were also tested on their IQ.

The results showed that the group taking creatine had a significant measurable boost to brainpower. Creatine plays a role in maintaining energy levels in the brain. Supplementing with creatine may help assist with brain function.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Positions Of Flexion Arm Workout...

One of the most effective workouts for building muscle in the arms is using a training technique called “Positions of Flexion”. Which basically means training each muscle group through it’s full range of motion; starting with a compound mid-range exercise, then moving on to an exercise that works the muscle in the completely stretched position, and then finishing with an exercise that works the muscle in the fully contracted position.

To give you an example, here is a typical POF bicep workout:

· Barbell Curls
(this is a mid-range exercise as most of the tension is on the biceps in the middle of the rep)

· Preacher Curls
(this is a stretched position exercise as most of the tension is on the biceps at the bottom or fully stretched position)

· Concentration Curls
(this is a peak contraction exercise as most of the tension is on the biceps at the top of the rep when the biceps are fully contracted)

Lately I’ve been focusing my own workouts around the “Positions Of Flexion” concept and the results have been awesome, I’ve gotten the most intense muscle pumps that I’ve felt in years. In the past I usually just focused most of my efforts around the big basic compound mid-range exercises, but by incorporating fully stretched movements and fully contracted movements I can tell that I’m working muscle fibers that are not getting touched with just basic compound lifts. POF training utilizes the best of both compound and isolation exercises to work the muscles through a complete range of motion.

This is the Positions Of Flexion arm workout I did on Saturday July 26.

EZ Barbell Curls
(mid range exercise)
2 x 6 with 110 lbs.

Close Grip Bench Press
(mid range exercise)
2 x 6 with 225 lbs.

EZ Barbell Preacher Curls
(stretch exercise)
2 x 6 with 70 lbs.

Overhead Dumbbell Extensions
(stretch exercise)
2 x 6 with 40 lbs.

Dumbbell Preacher Concentration Curls
(peak contraction exercise)
2 x 6 with 40 lbs.

Dumbbell Kickbacks
(peak contraction exercise)
2 x 6 with 40 lbs.

Plate Pinch Holds
Two 25 lb. plates