Archive for November, 2013

How to Design a Lifting Routine

A well structured weight training programme is a vital tool for increasing ones fitness and strenght. There are thousands and thousands of pre-made weight training programmes out there, some of which are useful while others are a waste of time and energy. The truth is your lifting routine has to suit your own individual goals and abilities. Luckily, it is extremely easy to design your own. It is important to remember that there are a few dos and don’ts that one must consider before going about designing their routine.

Keep it to two or three days a week. Depending on your schedule, you will have certain days where weight training is not an option. Remember, for your routine to be productive it must be done regularly but is important ensure you do not lift more than three days a week. You need rest days to recover and build muscle for your programme to work.

Focus on one of the main three compound lifts, one each day. These lifts are the squat, the deadlift and the bench press. These lifts are quite simply the most important lifts in any strength building routine. Go all out on these – lift heavy for low amount of reps (3 – 8 reps per set). The 5X5 methods have become very popular for this reason (5 sets of 5 reps). For example, on day one start with the bench press, day two start on the deadlift and day three start on the squat. Also add relevant assistance exercises to your routine on these days.

Work large muscle groups. There is nothing wrong with isolation exercises and you can add them into your routine if that suits your needs, but for improving strength gains they just don’t cut it. Focus on lifts that work large muscle groups and core strength such as the three main compound lifts, the military press, pull-ups/chin-ups and bent-over rows.

Keep sessions short, and don’t have too many exercises built into each day. Many people try to fit too many exercises into a workout. This results in either over training or slow progress. By keeping it to three of four exercises a day you can really push those lifts to the limit – which is the most effective way to gain strength. By keeping your workouts to around 45 minutes long you are more likely to stick with it, and your workouts don’t take a huge chunk of time out of your day.

One example of a pre-made routine which is tried and trusted is ‘Starting Strenght’ – by Mark Rippetoe. This routine can give you an example of how a programme should be made. Rippetoes book is also an essential read for anybody interested in buidling max strength.

Powerlifting Gear Pointers and Tips

Usually people who are new to powerlifting take a while to pick up the techniques do to the three lifts well. In fact some new beginners are simply interested in learing how to do the lifts. However, there will come a day when you want to lift more weight and you become passionate about powerlifting, thus you are pasionate about powerlifting gear. That and the fact that about 80% of all poewrlifting federations use gear, Whatever reason powerlifting gear has taken over the sport I don’t really care. the truth is simply that if you watn to compete in a major federation outside of RAW then you had better learn how to use poewrlifting gear..

If you are totally new to poewrlifting competitions then chances are that you will simply lift in what ever federation has the most pull in your city, or just compete in whatever federation your friends at the gym lift in…and that’s just fine. Most guys start training and competing in single or multi ply because of that. So whatever ply you choose to lift in here are some pointers.

#1 – Powerlifting Gear makes you move more weight because you are more stablized-… we can throw all of that “support system” nonsense out the window and leave that in the ads where it belongs. The point of gear is to help take advantage of your body’s strengths and minimize its structural weaknesses, and result is that you move more weight. This is what poewrlifting has become about and if you aren’t interested in lifting a ton of weight you can keep on lifting RAW and no one will blame you. But for those of you who are okay with the support method keep on reading.

#2 – The Numbers Game- Single ply gear will add about 50 to 150lbs to your squat, 30 to 150lbs to your bench, and 50lbs or so to your deadlift. These are generalizations, as powerlifter bodies are different so different lifting styles will get different amounts out of the weight. Most single ply feds require a “walked out” squat so usually the rule is that whatever you can walk out you should be able to squat in a suit. Bench numbers will vary depending on mastery of the shirt and the rules for set up of the fed but expect to get AT LEAST 50 lbs over your raw. Squat suits don’t really help your over all lifting total but what they do do is help you get out of the sitting position and gain more momentum on the way up. But if you couldn’t pick up the weight before then you probably wont be able to now. Suits and shirts really just help you out of the bottom of the lift. In Multi ply gear you can basically just add another 100lbs to each lift. An added advantage to lifting multi ply is that most feds use a monolift to squat out of, so the walk out is eliminated. If you have 2 ply briefs and a 2 ply canvas suit on (4 plys of material), then 200 to 300lbs over your raw is not out of the question. Same on the bench. When I first started training in gear I bought a 2 ply Phenom and hit 500 at 185lbs bodyweight after 4 months of training with a 360 raw bench…so there you go.

#3- Powerlifting Gear Sucks- So I’m sure the beginners are salivating now and are pulling out there credit cards to order one of everything…BUT…the rest of the story is that gear only works because it is tight. Not tight like some underarmor shit you wear under your football pads, tight like your limbs go numb. Powerlifting Gear is extremely uncomfortable…it hurts to wear. It’s really hard to get into and out of, often requiring help from your training partners yanking and pulling on you, ripping your arm hair out. Your legs and arms get huge cuts in them which turn to scars. Your balls get smashed. If you’re reading this and calling bullshit then your gear is loose and you’re a poser. If you’re reading this and laughing because you are covered in scars and know it’s true then you are a powerlifter. If you’re reading this and are scared then you are a newb, and have lots of fun to look forward to.

Learn how to lift in powerlifting gear. Checkout more of our powerlifting articles.

I love simplicity.  Simple works and it works pretty darn well.

So now I am going to give you 2 sample routines of 3 simple chest muscle exercises you can do to build chest muscles fast and easy.

Sample Chest Muscle Exercises 1

Flat Barbell Bench Press: 2 sets x 5 to 7 reps each

Incline Dumbbell Press: 2 sets x 5 to 7 reps each

Wide-Grip Dips: 2 sets x 5 to 7 reps each

Sample Chest Muscle Exercises 2

Incline Barbell Bench Press: 2 sets x 5 to 7 reps each

Wide-Grip Dips: 2 sets x 5 to 7 reps each

Flat Dumbbell Press: 2 sets x 5 to 7 reps each

Do these exercises to concentric muscle failure (meaning until you can’t do any more reps without losing the right form) and limit them to 5 to 7 reps each.

Now let me explain the basic motion of building chest muscles.

There are basically 2 basic movements that people use to build chest muscles: the Press and the Fly.

Now Flyes work well here and there but nothing will compare to the anabolic effect of high intensity presses.  So I would suggest you focus on Presses for maximum effect.

For presses, we are talking about the dumbbell presses, heavy barbell presses, and wide-grip dips.  Doing these with some variation will give you the pecs that you wish for easily.

So let’s look at them with a bit more detail.

Barbell Bench Press (Flat/Incline/Decline)

The standard barbell press is your friend when it comes to super effective chest muscle exercises.  This is a compound exercise that will work several muscle groups but specifically your chest muscles.  Also this chest exercise will allow you to handle maximum weight in the given amount of motion.

For variation, you can do flat, incline or decline barbell bench presses.

Inclines will work your upper chest muscles. Declines will work your lower and outer chest muscles while flat will work both equally.

Place your bets on barbell bench presses if you want to build chest muscles fast and easy.

Dumbbell Press (Flat/Incline/Decline)

Dumbbell presses is another effective exercise to help you build chest muscles.  Dumbbells allow a more natural range of motion as compared to barbells and this lessens the chances of shoulder injuries.

Another advantage of dumbbells is that it won’t allow one arm to cheat for the other, which helps to prevent strength imbalances.

However, the drawback is that you will not be able to take on as much weight.

Nonetheless, the standard dumbbell press should be in your arsenal of great chest exercises.

Wide-Grip Dips

This is an amazing movement which many people overlook when building chest muscles.

What you can do is to use a wider grip when doing the dips and lean forward a little.  This will stimulate your pectorals better instead of just working out your triceps.

Add resistance by using a weight belt if your body weight is not sufficient.  

Dips are perfect compound movement that will complete your overall chest development.

There you go – 3 Simple exercises to help you build chest muscles fast and easy.

Don’t overdo them.  Just focus on quality and do each rep properly and you will be well on your way to an impressive, button-bursting chest!

Get started building your dream body at with our FREE, comprehensive muscle-building package of guides, tools, tips, reports, meal-plans, recipes and more. Also read through actual consumer comments and complaints of the top muscle building programs at Best Muscle Building Programs – Rizal Shaik, Fitness Enthusiast and Webmaster of Muscle Building Site

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