Thursday, March 28, 2013

6 Training tips for women

The following tips are not set in stone for all women but generally these tips apply to your average female trainee.

1.  Reduce your rest periods-Women generally have better endurance than men and therefore do quite well with shorter rest periods.

2. Use high volume work in your program- women tend to get very good results by doing more sets in their routine. Don't be afraid of doing 4,5 or even 6 sets of something.

3. Full body workouts work best- women love to have that full body fatigue feeling more so than men do. Most women have a goal of fat loss and full body workouts work best to get that desired result.

4. Use medium to high rep ranges- Women don't respond best to working near their 1RM so it is best to use between 6-15 reps.

5. Group fitness is not weight training-I have total respect for group fitness but it should not be the heart of a woman's strength training program. When you can only max out with 15lb dumbbells in a class you will never make the progress you need to see the results you want. Enjoy your group fitness class every once in awhile just don't make it a staple.

6. Don't fear 3x a week- I have found that many women get greater results when they go from doing 2 strength training sessions to 3 a week. Try adding that extra day and see what happens for you.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Eat a high protein breakfast to burn more fat

There has been plenty of research that shows you can lose much more weight and keep from regaining it by eating a high protein, low carb breakfast instead of skipping it or eating a high carb breakfast. Eating breakfast before you workout will help you burn more fat during the workout as well as a greater post workout calorie burn.While some think eating on an empty stomach will help you burn fat, it has been found that this is not the case.

Another option is what famous strength coach Charles Poliquin refers to as the meat and nuts breakfast. He claims that his businessmen and women, pro athletes and other clients have all see the best results when they go on a meat and nut breakfast. Some examples of this include:

Turkey burger and handful of almonds
Chicken breasts and handful of macadamia nuts

Friday, March 15, 2013

5 of my favorite bicep routines

1.  Standing barbell curls-6 reps ( very heavy weight )
     Standing dumbbell hammer curls-12 reps ( moderate weight )

* Rest 90sec-2min and repeat for 2-3 more rounds

2. Seated dumbbell incline curls-8 reps
    Chin-up-10-12 reps
    Seated dumbbell incline curls-8 reps ( most likely you will need to drop the weight by 5-10lbs than what you used from the first 8 reps )

* Rest 2min and repeat for 2 more rounds

3. Seated incline dumbbell curls-6 reps
    Standing barbell curl with wide grip-10 reps
    Cable curls ( put the cable pulleys at the lowest position and stand facing outward )-15 reps

* 2min rest or more. Repeat for 2 more rounds

4.  Preacher curl- 2 sets at 6-8 reps...resting 60 sec between sets
Then cut the weight by about 2.5-5lbs each side
Now do 2 sets at 8-10 reps...resting 60 sec between sets
Then cut the weight by about 2.5-5lbs each side
Now do 2 sets at 10-12 reps....resting 60sec between sets
Finally cut the weight one more time by 2.5-5lbs each side
Finish with 1/2 reps to failure ( curl the weight half way up and then let it down, now bring it all the way back up to equal one rep )

2min or more rest. 2-3 more rounds.

5. Run the rack-

Grab a pair of dumbbells and do standing curls for 6-8 reps
The pick up the next lowest pair and aim for another 6-8, keep repeating this sequence of dropping the weight and doing 6-8 reps until you have done 4 drops.

Just need to do this one time, trust me!

Monday, March 11, 2013

12 ways to improve your workouts

1. Don't jump around-Pick a program and stick with it for a time frame instead of doing a different program or routine every workout. Get better by doing the most productive exercises and methods.

2. Foam roll/warm-up-Roll the hams, glutes, IT, adductors and quads. Once your done rolling do a proper dynamic warm-up to get your body ready to go.

3. Get a goal-Try not to be the do all guy/girl. Don't try to run a marathon, deadlift 700, gain 20 lbs and get ripped. Pick what is most important and go dominate!

4. No need to train to failure every workout- I am fine with people training to failure just not all the time. By not training to failure every time you will keep yourself from getting injured, save your CNS and make it easier for you to recover.

5. Do pushups-They are just a simple and effective exercise to help the core, shoulders, chest and triceps. No matter how strong or weak you are you will benefit.

6. Do some carries- farmers walks at the end of your workout are great. Strengthen the hips, core, grip and traps.

7. Take a good day off- No anything, let your body recover. The gains are made outside the gym.

8. Get a massage- Find a great person and stick with them. Trust me you will feel amazing when you start getting them more often.

9.Keep your workouts under 60 minutes- If you are working hard enough no need to go for any longer. After 60 minutes testosterone levels drop and cortisol levels go up which is not a good combination.

10. Do more pulling than pushing-Most need more pulling to help even out the imbalance between the back and the front side of the body. Help your shoulders and posture by doing more back work. Ratio of 2-1 ( pull to push ) work is solid.

11. Take nutrition seriously- If you take your lifting seriously you must do the same with the eating else expect nothing.

12. Do more exercises standing- Burn more calories, work the core more than sitting variations.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Q & A-Monday edition

Q- I have problems building up my triceps, any suggestions?

A- Try using this method introduced from Canadian weight training coach Pierre Roy.

1) Lying tricep extensions-8-10 reps
2) Close grip bench press-6 reps
3) Lying tricep extensions- 8-10 reps

Rest 2 minutes. Do this 2 more rounds for a total of 3. You might need to drop 5-10 lbs each set.

Q-What can I do for cardio besides the treadmill, bike, stair stepper etc?

A- Try doing things like-

Sprints on a track ( depending on weather )
Agility ladder work
Jump rope
Medicine ball slams
Sled work ( if you have access )

You can even use each of these in one workout

Q-When I bench I notice shoulder pain, what could this be?

A-Most likely this is caused by 3 things

1) Muscle imbalance- Too often you see an imbalance between the pecs and the external rotators and back.Start working those areas more and working your chest less.

2) Adhesion's-After years and years of training you will have built up adhesion's in your muscles. Most often it is the subscapularis when talking about shoulder pain and benching. If you can find a professional to perform ART or Active Release Technique this can help you.

3) Flexibility-Failure to stretch regularly can lead to injuries. Start adding in stretching especially for the shoulder girdle.

Q- I have been working out consistently but still cant lose bodyfat, what could be the reason?

A-Are you doing the following?

1) Eating clean and lean-making protein and veggies a staple and keeping sugars, carbs and processed foods to a minimal. If you don't eat right you wont get the results you want. Make this priority number one!

2) Weight training with different rep schemes-Make sure you lift heavy, medium and light. Make sure you lift with high, medium and low reps. There are benefits to you with each variation so use them.

3) Including intervals as your primary cardio- Skip the distance runs and go with the short intervals to speed up your bodies fat loss potential.

Q- I only have 3 days to weight train and I want to put on some size what could I do?

A- Use this split


Every other week you could rotate this so you do upper body 1x and lower 2x.

Q-What are common mistakes people make when working out?

A-Most I see include

Not warming up properly
Doing too much pressing and not enough pulling
Jerky seated rows using their low back, momentum and neck
Women not lifting enough
Lack of intensity