Friday, February 27, 2009

Afghan Muscles

One of the Total Fitness Bodybuilding forum members posted this a little while ago and I wanted to re-post it here on my blog, just in case you never seen it on the forum.

"Afghan Muscles" is kind of like a Middle Eastern version of Pumping Iron, but it shows a much harsher reality side of things. In a country ravaged by war, these men still hold on to their dreams of muscle, honor and fame in a world of chaos. From the dusty ruins of Kabul to the skyline of Dubai we follow the bodybuilder Hamid's heroic struggle to win the championships and thereby create a better life for himself and his clan. But nothing goes as planned…

This is a trailer clip of the documentary below:

I watched it on youtube and I've posted the links below so you can check it out yourself. It is touching story, yet kind of depressing at the same time, to see the struggles that these guys go through day to day.

It really puts things in perspective, a lot of the minor things that most of us complain about here in North America is nothing compared to the hardships these guys have to deal with.

The video is divided up into a series of 7 small 8-10 minute segments that you can watch below:

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Part 5

Part 6

Part 7

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Blast Your Bench Success Story

I just got this awesome e-mail the other day from one of my Blast Your Bench students that I wanted to pass along to you...

Hey Lee,

I had to write you and let you know that I just finished the 3 week Blast Your Bench program. And I have Great News, I packed on 40 lbs. to my bench in just 3 weeks!!

Here's a short back ground, I'm 37 yrs old, body weight 200 lbs., my 1 rep max was 175lbs. I've lifted before a few years ago and had fair results, But I hit a plateau and simply gave up. So this time I'd been lifting for a few months but didn't do much bench pressing because it wasn't my strong exercise.

Then I came across the Blast Your Bench program, I was very skeptical and I researched all I could find on you and this routine and after a couple weeks I thought:

"What the hell, it's less then 40 bucks and if it doesn't work I can get a refund".

So I began my 3 week bench blasting adventure...

And I took my bench from 175lbs. to 215lbs. in 3 short weeks, Lee I am not only extremely satisfied but you couldn't buy this routine back for triple the price! LOL

I've just started the 12 week routine of yours and I look forward to having you in my corner.

Thank you!
Rocky Bozarth

If Rocky can break past his bench press plateau in just
a few short weeks, what kind of results can you get from
a "3 week Bench Blasting adventure" ?

Can Working Out Make You Smarter?

Working out will not only help you get bigger, stronger, and more muscular... But it will also help you get smarter as well!

That's what the research shows. There have been several studies done that show physical activity improves academic performance. One recent study done by the American College of Sports Medicine found that middle-school students in grades 6 through 8 who performed the best on various fitness tests which measured aerobic capacity, strength, endurance, flexibility, and body composition performed better academically as well.

Results from the study showed that the fittest students scored approx. 30% higher on standardized tests then the least fit students.

That's another huge benefit from working out and a good reason for people of all ages to make time for regular exercise in their schedules. You'll not only feel and look better physically, but you'll be at the top of your game mentally as well.

Patricia gets her Blue Belt in Jiu-Jitsu...

I'm very proud of my girlfriend Patricia because this past weekend she got her Blue Belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ). She's been training BJJ pretty serious for the past two and a half years. I consider her my personal bodyguard because she can officially kick my ass any day of the week LOL

Our local paper even published a full page write up about the BJJ club with lots of pics, including a couple good shots of Patricia (the bottom two pics).

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Do you workout when you have a cold?

I've been feeling a little bit under the weather lately. I've got a cough and a stuffy nose. For some reason I usually get a cold each winter. Now I know when most people get sick they tend to just sit around and wait for the cold to go away before they do anything physical.

But I find one of the best ways to feel better and help ease up some of the congestion is to get outside for some fresh air and easy cardio (i.e. go for a walk outdoors). Now obviously this is if your cold / flu is not too severe, you'll have to use your own judgment on this one. But me personally, I always feel a lot better after a walk outside.

So yesterday I bundled up with my winter coat, popped some ephedrine and caffeine to help give me an energy boost and took my dog Sasha out for a walk along some of the awesome walking trails we have here in Newfoundland. The dog loved it, and I enjoyed it as well and felt a lot better afterwards.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Bodybuilding Talk Show Replay Posted.

I just posted up the replay of the live Total Fitness Bodybuilding Talk Show at:

The video and MP3 audio of the show will be up for the next 24 hours. After that they will be added to the Total Fitness Bodybuilding "Inner Circle" members area.

Modified 300 Workout - Thursday Feb. 19

I'm still working around my nagging pulled chest muscle so for my last workout I messed around with a modified 300 workout program.

Note: I posted a video clip of the actual 300 workout on youtube a while back.

This is the workout I did...

Rather then doing chins I did Bodyweight Rows 25 total reps.

Deadlifts 50 total reps with 135 lbs.

Push Ups 50 total reps.
(Note: I did these with a close grip and leaning against a bench with my body at a 45 degree angle to reduce stain on my pec.)

Box Jumps 50 total jumps.

Rather then floor wipers holding a barbell, I just did decline bench sit ups for 50 total reps.

Rather then doing dumbbell clean and press, I did seated shoulder presses with 95 lbs. for 50 total reps. (Less stretch on the chest.)

Finished up with another 25 bodyweight rows.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Upper Body Workout - Feb. 18, 2009

I just did an easy machine workout today because I’m still not feeling 100% from pulling my chest muscle last weekend. I just want to work around the muscle pull and avoid pulling it any more or risking a more serious injury.

Started with a 35 minute walk on the treadmill.

Then I did the following machine exercises.

Hammer Strength Shoulder Press Machine
Started really light and did lots of sets because I was really cautious about my pulled pec muscle. I didn’t want to jump up in weight too fast and risk straining the muscles.
This is how my weights went like:
40 x 5
60 x 5
80 x 5
100 x 5
120 x 5
140 x 5
160 x 5
180 x 5
200 x 5

All these exercises are proceeded with 1-2 lighter warm up sets.

Hammer Strength Seated Bicep Curls
3 sets of 10 reps with 60 lbs.

Hammer Strength Seated Tricep Extensions
3 sets of 10 reps with 80 lbs.

Hammer Strength Chest Supported Row
3 sets of 10 reps with 180 lbs.

Side Lateral Raise Machine
3 sets of 10 reps with 90 lbs.

1 Arm Dumbbell Wrist Curls
3 sets of 20 reps with 30 lbs.

Reverse Cable Curls With EZ Bar Attachment
3 sets of 20 reps with 50 lbs.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Leg Workout - Monday Feb 16, 2009

I did a leg workout today. Normally I like to do squats (or box squats) as my main exercise for my leg workout. However, I pulled my chest muscle during a workout this past weekend. Nothing too serious, but the muscle is tight and hurts when I over stretch it. So I didn't want to chance squats with the bar on my back and arms strecthed out, so I opted for leg presses as my main exercise instead.

Warm up / cardio with 15 minutes on the rowing machine.
(Note: this is important especially when training in the winter
time to get your core body temp up and ready for a workout.)

Leg Press
I pyramided up and down in weight going from:
5 plates per side for 10 reps
6 plates per side for 10 reps
7 plates per side for 10 reps
8 plates per side for 10 reps
9 plates per side for 10 reps
10 plates per side for 10 reps
9 plates per side for 10 reps
8 plates per side for 10 reps
7 plates per side for 10 reps
6 plates per side for 10 reps
5 plates per side for 10 reps

Leg Extensions
50 lbs. x 25 reps
100 lbs. x 10 reps
150 lbs. 10 reps
100 lbs. x 10 reps
50 lbs. x 25 reps

Then I finished up with 3 sets of 10-15 reps of bodyweight leg curls on the stability ball (like in my previous video post below).

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Bodyweight Leg Curls - Hamstring & Glute Workout

Looking for an awesome hamstring and glute exercise? Then try doing stability ball leg curls. This movement hits the hamstrings and glutes from a unique angle and because you are moving your entire body with the exercise it will have a higher level of neuromuscular activation in the muscles compared to exercises that you just move your limbs (such as the lying leg curl machine).

All you need to do this exercise is a stability ball. So it is perfect for a home gym or public gym. Brace your arms on the floor and place your feet on the center of the ball with your legs straight. Lift your butt off the floor and then curl your legs back behind you. This will heavily work the hamstrings and glutes.

Give it a try in your next leg workout and then leave me a comment below to let me know how you like it...

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Your First Bodybuilding Competition

I've been competing in bodybuilding competitions since I was 17 years old and I love it...

There is just something very satisfying about setting a personal goal to get in your best physical shape ever and then follow through to see that goal fulfilled.

Have you ever secretly wanted to get in that kind of shape and take your physique to the level where you could compete in a natural bodybuilding competition?

Now I know you are probably not looking to go on to be the next Mr. Olympia, but nonetheless wouldn't it be an awesome feeling to get into your best shape ever and then confidently display the results of all your hard work at a local competition in front of a supportive audience of friends, family, and fellow gym members.

I've personally coached and helped dozens of competitors prepare for their very first bodybuilding competition and when it's all said and done I hear the same things over and over again...

"Competing in bodybuilding was one of the most
challenging things I have ever done, and it was
also one of the most personally rewarding!"

While the exact wording may vary, the message is the same. Bottom line I've never met a single person who has regretted competing in a bodybuilding competition. In fact it is very often one of the most memorable moments of their life, something they are very proud of.

That's why I've put together a step-by-step bodybuilding competition training guide that explains everything you need to know about preparing for and looking your best at your first bodybuilding competition.

Your First Bodybuilding Competition is a book and DVD package that breaks down the whole competition preparation process into an easy to follow step-by-step plan. It will clear up a lot of myths and misconceptions with regards to competitive bodybuilding and help you confidently step on the contest stage in Your Best Shape Ever!

Click Here for more info and to learn how you can get a copy of this killer muscle sculpting, fat shredding, bodybuilding training guide.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

I have something to confess...

I have something to confess...

Last night I had a "cheat" meal, in other words I
basically pigged out and enjoyed myself :-)

And this wasn't just a little baby cheat meal,
oh no, this was a full blown loosen the belt
buckle a couple notches type of cheat meal!

You see yesterday was my girlfriend Patricia's birthday,
so I took her out to a local restaurant to celebrate.
The birthday meal consisted of a tasty high fat appetizer,
an even tastier and higher calorie main course, then we
finished up with b-day cake for dessert, and the meal
was enjoyed along with a few adult beverages.

Yikes! From the sounds of all that months of hard
training and clean eating just went out the door.

But guess what...
This morning when I got up there wasn't a single pound
gained, my pants still fit me, and both Patricia and myself
went right back to our regular routine. We started the day
by taking our dog for a walk outside and then had a solid
breakfast of high protein oatmeal and egg whites.

When it comes to working out and proper eating a lot of
people fall into the ALL or NOTHING trap.

They might be super strict with their planned routine for
several weeks, and then if they do have a little slip up,
they get discouraged and say: "Well I blew it now, so I
might as well just scrap the whole thing". And then they
go on to eat like crap until they get so disgusted with
themselves that they start the whole process over again.

The best approach when it comes to sticking with an eating
and training plan for the long term is to purposely allow
room for cheat meals, social events, or whatever.

A great nutrition tip that I learned from Dr. John Berardi,
is to plan to break the rules about 10% of the time.

From a practical standpoint there is virtually no
difference in results from following a nutrition
program 100% of the time, and following a nutrition
program 90% of the time.

Now of course this wouldn't apply for an elite level
athlete who is preparing for a major competition, where
the difference between winning and losing could be a
fraction of a second or a single judges opinion.
In that extreme case every little bit counts.

But for most of us "regular folks" who are plugging away
in the gym day in and day out to just look better, feel
better, and improve our overall health and fitness then
we don't need to go to extremes.

In fact when I'm designing customized training and
nutrition programs for my personal coaching students
I purposely plan for a few cheat meals each week
within the program structure.

Note: you can get more info about this at:

By allowing for a bit of leeway with your eating plan,
you can stick to it for the long term and actually get
the fat loss and muscle building results you want.
And you won't have to be anti-social and alienate
your friends and family in the process.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Squat and Deadlift Workout - Training Legs, Lower Back and Abs

This is a video clip of a Max Effort Squat Workout that I did last week.

I started the workout with a 10 minute warm up on the concept 2 rowing machine (ergometer).

The main exercise of the workout was low box squats starting off with just the empty bar and then pyramiding up in weight to a max effort heavy set of 3 reps.

Then I did lying leg curls, after a warm up set I did 5 sets of 5 reps.

After that I moved on to high rep partial deadlifts 2 sets of 20 reps.

Then I did some ab work with pull down abs for 5 sets of 10 reps.

And finished up with pull throughs with low pulley cable for 3 sets of 10 reps.

Friday, February 6, 2009

The Top 5 Ab Exercises

I just got home from the gym a little while ago and
there must have been at least a dozen people (or more)
who were all doing basic ab exercises like crunches,
leg raises, etc. But the sad thing is that 99% of
them will never get any closer to achieving
6 pack abs by training this way.

And it is not from lack of effort, I know some of these
people have literally been doing daily ab exercises for
YEARS and they still have a soft mushy mid-section.

If you can relate to this and maybe even know of
someone like this personally (ie. like maybe YOU)
who has tried everything, but still can't get lean
ripped abs then I have some good news...

Remember that I mentioned earlier about my friend
Nick Nilsson's killer 50% Off Discount Sale on all
of his best fitness programs for this week only.

Well, he's got a GREAT abdominal training book in the
mix that is jam PACKED with some of the most effective,
and unique ab exercises that you've never seen before.

I can promise that when you start putting these ab
exercises into practice, you will see better results
in a single MONTH then you would get in an entire year
of doing the standard run of the mill ab exercises that
most people do in the gym.

And if you want to know the reason why basic exercises
such as crunches are NOT a good exercise for flattening
your abs (even though everybody thinks they are)
just click on the link below...

In fact Nick is so confident these unique ab exercises
are going to change your ab traning forever, he would
like to offer you five of his "Best Abdominal" exercises
to try out so you can see (and feel) for yourself just
how powerful they are.

These movements will help you develop such a powerful
mid-section that your six-pack abs will stand out in a
crowd. And even if your bodyfat levels creep up a little,
your abs will STILL look fantastic!

One thing that bugs that crap out of both Nick and
myself is seeing people wasting their effort in the
gym on exercises that just don't get the job done.
When people don't see results, they very often quit
in discouragement and it's a shame...

So please don't let this happen to you.
Just click on the link below right now to sign up for
the five FREE exercises, delivered right to your email.
Trust me once you try these exercises you'll feel the
difference from the VERY FIRST REP!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Want a bigger firmer rounder butt?

I've got a question...
Who doesn't appreciate a nice firm round behind?

If you were to survey a bunch of guys on what bodyparts
they find most attractive on a woman no doubt a nice firm
round backside would be right at the top of the list.

But you know what...
The same applies from a woman's perspective as well.
Most women rate a nice butt on a man as one of the most
sexy bodyparts.

However, the average guy you'll see in the gym will tend
to focus primarily on the "show off muscles" like the
chest, arms, and abs. While the lower body muscles such
as the hips, glutes, and thighs are secondary
(if they are even trained at all).

Trust me a big upper body on top of skinny legs and a
flat butt is a major turn off to most women. And I'm not
making this stuff up, you can google up the surveys
yourself and see that what I'm saying here is very true.

And besides building an aesthetically appealing body
in the effort to look good and attract the opposite s-e-x
(which is obviously a major motivating factor for most).
Having well developed glutes helps improve your overall
strength and athletic performance.

Things such as running, jumping, and even locking out a
heavy squat or deadlift all require having strong glutes.
In fact a lot of the time the limiting factor in squat
and deadlift strength is not from having weak legs or
back muscles, but simply not having the strength in the
glutes to bring your hips forward and lockout the lift.

So the question is how can you get tighter stronger glutes?

THAT is where Nick Nilsson's book "Gluteus to the Maximus
- Build a Bigger Butt NOW!" comes in.

This book is truly one-of-a-kind. If your goal is to
increase glute size and strength this is something you
definitely want to check out, especially while Nick has
got his HUGE 50% Discount Sale going on this week!
(until midnight Feb. 6th).

The specialization workouts that are found in Gluteus
to the Maximus have been used by both men and women to
deliver "uplifting" results in as little as 2 weeks!

I mean let's face it... we ALL want to look better,
whether it's coming or going :-) And the boost in
confidence and self-esteem you can get when you really
feel good about how you look gets noticed by everybody
(from all angles).

"Gluteus to the Maximus" has 18 complete workout programs
that you can follow, both at the gym, or in the privacy
of your own home!

Everything you need to know about maximizing your
glute development as quickly as possible can be found
in this book.

And honestly, I'd like to tell you how it compares to
other books out there on the same subject but there
ARE NO OTHER BOOKS out there on the same subject!

So if building a bigger butt is something you've always
wanted to do but didn't where to turn,
"Gluteus to the Maximus" is the book to get.

You can check it out by clicking on the link below:

Monday, February 2, 2009

Save 50% Off These Fitness Programs!

My friend and fitness trainer colleague, Nick Nilsson,
just e-mailed me yesterday to let me know that for the
next FIVE days (until Friday, Feb. 6th), he's slashing
the price on all of his best muscle building, fat burning,
body transformation programs!

That's a whopping 50% off! Even at the regular price his
stuff is an incredible deal. But this 50% offer is just
(but it's good for you because YOU get all the benefits).

If you are not familiar with Nick Nilsson he is the author
of the following programs...

Metabolic Surge - Rapid Fat Loss

Muscle Explosion - 28 Days to Maximum Mass

The Best Exercises You've Never Heard Of

The Best Abdominal Exercises You've Never Heard Of

Gluteus to the Maximus - Build a Bigger Butt NOW!

Hybrid Training

Specialization Training

I've been following and applying a lot of Nick's training
advice for several years now in my own workouts with
amazing results.

He's got some unique training programs that you won't find
anywhere else, trust me this isn't the same old rehashed
workouts that you'll see posted all over the Internet.
This stuff is truly cutting edge results-producing
stuff. Nick is definitely the real deal when it comes
to effective training systems.

Just to give you a quick example just check out his
"Metabolic Surge - Rapid Fat Loss" program.

This is truly one of THE most effective training programs
you can do if you're looking to burn fat fast while keeping
and even building lean muscle mass in the process.

- It IS possible to gain muscle while losing fat, even
in advanced trainers.

- Under the right dietary and training conditions, your
body can actually use your own bodyfat to provide energy
for building muscle, practically doubling the speed of
fat loss.

- Low-carb diets work. Low-fat diets work. But neither
works forever. You can take the best features of both
and combine them to actually FEED off each other with
NO plateaus EVER.

- Your own natural metabolism is FAR more powerful for
burning fat than any fat-loss pills or potions you could
ever take IF you know how to stimulate it properly.

- Precise manipulation of the nutrients in your diet
(protein, fat and carbs) can have extraordinary
muscle-building and fat-burning hormonal effects
on your body.

If any of these things sound interesting to you, then
Metabolic Surge is definitely a program you should
check out...

You know from experience that I'm not one to mess around
with ineffective information. I wouldn't recommend this
stuff if I didn't truly believe that it works!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Bench Press Assistance Exercise Workout

This is a video clip of a Bench Press assistance workout that my girlfriend and I did last week. One thing I'm often asked from a lot of women is:

"Can A Woman Do The Same Workout As A Man?"

There is a lot of misconceptions about this, but the answer is absolutely YES!

Both men and women have the same major muscle groups and those muscle groups need to be trained with the same exercises. There is really no such a thing as a "mans workout" or a "womans workout".

In this workout here we did...

- Dynamic Effort Bench Press 8 sets of 3 reps with mini bands.
- Face Pulls 3 sets of 10 reps.
- Reverse Grip Bench Press 5 sets of 5 reps.
- 1 Arm Dumbbell Tricep Extensions 3 sets of 10 reps.
- Plate Raises 3 sets of 10 reps.

This is a powerlifting style of workout routine that we like to do in the off-season for strength and size gains. Then before a competition we'll switch to more traditional bodybuilding style workouts when training to get ripped.