How to Avoid Injuries in the Gym

How to Avoid Injuries in the Gym

One of the most common fears that plague powerlifters, fitness enthusiasts, bodybuilders, and any other type of gym goer is gym injuries. Injuring yourself in the gym is painful for your body, can be mentally challenging to get over, and will set you back weeks from meeting your goals. There are few things as detrimental to your workout experience as a training injury, and in today’s post, we will be looking at several ways that you can avoid getting injured at the gym. Here are 4 things you can do to reduce the risk of having a training injury during your workout. Leave Your Ego at the Door While lifting huge amounts of weight feels really good and may impress the people around you, it can also cause injuries very quickly. While it’s good to push yourself in the gym to make progress, there is a big difference between pushing yourself and trying to show off. Leave the ego at the door and never try to lift more weight than you know you can handle. Warm Up It’s never a great idea to go from 0 to 100 mph instantly in your workout. Your muscles should be warmed up so they’re ready to handle the strain you put on them. Start off with 5-10 minutes of stretching followed by a couple of lighter weight warm-up sets before you really get going with the heavier weight. Doing all this might seem like a hassle, but it will protect your muscles from injury and provide a better all-around workout. Use Proper Form Probably the number one reason for training injuries in...
3 Exercises to Build a Better 6 Pack

3 Exercises to Build a Better 6 Pack

It’s that time of year again, where the days are getting longer and people start talking about getting in shape for summer. One of the most obvious and coveted features of a lean body is 6-pack abs. To get a 6-pack, you have to be disciplined both at the gym and in the kitchen. There are no shortcuts to building and revealing a great set of abs, but there is a lot more to it than just cutting out carbs and doing a million crunches a day. Today we’re going to take a look at 3 exercises that can help you build your abs for a great looking midsection this summer. Before we get started, let’s discuss nutrition. To go into every detail about the way your body may react to certain types of foods and how to pursue the healthiest diet for your body type, we’d have to write hundreds of blog posts covering every possible topic. When it comes to getting lean with relative ease, however, the guidelines are pretty simple. In order for abdominal muscles to show up and look like the superheroes of Hollywood, you must have very low body fat. We know for a fact that calories in vs. calories out is what affects body fat. Contrary to popular opinion, the types of food you eat have nothing to do with weight loss or gain. It’s all about making sure you use up a higher number of calories than you take in. That does not mean, however, that you should just get all your calories from candy and call it a day. It is...
Lagging or Weak Body Parts? Read This!

Lagging or Weak Body Parts? Read This!

If you’ve been working out for a while you can likely feel that you have one or two stubborn muscles that just don’t keep up with the rest of your body. For many people, maybe their calves lag behind in growth compared to the rest of their legs, or perhaps it’s that their back feels weak in comparison to their chest or arms. What causes these muscles to lag behind, and what can you do to promote their growth? Keep on reading to find out! You’ve Been Taught the Wrong Way to Lift Abs and calves are two muscle groups that a huge percentage of weightlifters complain about. They claim to train them just as much as other muscle groups, and they feel sore for days after the workout is finished. There are a couple of reasons why these two muscle groups are very commonly behind in their growth, and one reason is that the information circulating about how to work these muscles out is wrong. For many years even experts have said that you need to train fast twitch muscles at low weight, and maximum reps. However, one of the biggest keys for muscle growth is called time under tension. Time under tension is essentially the time that your muscles are working throughout their range of motion. If you’re working out your fast twitch muscles (or any muscle for that matter) in a way that reduces time under tension, you will see very little strength or size gains in that muscle group. Next time you train your abs or calves, instead of doing hundreds of light quick reps, load up...
Top 5 Mistakes Rookie Weightlifters Make That Slow Their Progress

Top 5 Mistakes Rookie Weightlifters Make That Slow Their Progress

As our society puts more of an emphasis on health and wellness, more people than ever are getting gym memberships or buying equipment to work out in a home gym. This overall awareness of working toward a stronger and healthier lifestyle is great but a lot of people, especially beginners, make some mistakes that are slowing down their progress. Today we’ll look at 5 things rookie weightlifters don’t do, and why you should be doing them. They Don’t Ask Questions The number one problem facing individuals who are new to the health and fitness scene is a lack of knowledge. You could read an article a day and watch 20 hours of YouTube videos a week and never exhaust the amount of information available about weightlifting, dieting, and every other category of health and fitness. If you’re trying to get started in this lifestyle, the best thing you can do is educate yourself. Ask questions of the people around you who have been at it for years and do your own online research. Don’t go in thinking you already have all the answers. They Don’t Set Goals Many new weightlifters go into their gym without a clear goal in mind. They may generally want to “be stronger” or “look better”, but what does that actually look like? If you’ve ever tried to get anything done you probably know that without a clear goal in mind, it is quite difficult to know when you’ve succeeded, and weightlifting is no different. Before you start, set a goal, and once you’ve achieved that one, set a new one. They Don’t Track Progress...

Advantages of Bulking and Cutting

Something you’ll hear every year at about this time is “Summer is coming up, time for me to start cutting”. Many people swear by the bulk up for winter and cut back the extra fat for the summer strategy in order to maximize their results. Today we’re going to look at what is involved in a bulking/cutting strategy and find out if it’s the plan for you! In a bulking and cutting plan, the goal is to shred any extra fat you may have so as to increase muscle tone for the summer months. The reason for this is usually that the summer temperatures allow people to more easily show off all the work they’ve been doing at the gym and in the kitchen. After summer is over, however, it’s time to bulk up. That means eating more calories and upping the carb intake so as to maximize muscle growth. Bulking vs. Cutting Workout Routine Regardless of whether it’s bulking season or cutting season, your workout routine will mostly stay the same. You’ll want to spend 3-5 days a week either at a commercial gym or your own in-home gym burning as many calories as possible and exhausting your muscles so they can grow stronger. The one difference is that during cutting season you will want to increase the time you spend on cardio workouts. High-intensity workouts that get your heart rate up tend to burn fat faster than other workouts so these are perfect for your cutting routine. Bulking vs. Cutting Diet The biggest difference in bulking vs. cutting is your diet. If you’re cutting, you will want...
3 Great Workouts for a Muscular Chest

3 Great Workouts for a Muscular Chest

It’s hard to argue that having a well-defined, muscular chest makes any guy look better. With the new year approaching, you might be resolving to hit the gym and look for a way to develop your chest into that of a Greek god. Getting a chiseled chest isn’t easy, and a lot of people try and fail every year. Here are 3 great workouts that if you stick to them, will help you get that big muscular chest you’ve always dreamed of! Bench Press I’m sorry if you hate bench presses, but there really is no better workout for adding size to your chest than bench pressing. This workout, if done with the right form, will work your core, lower, mid-, and upper chest, and will also work your front delts. Focus on using the right form and not only will you work more muscle groups, you’ll also be able to push more weight. Dig your shoulders back into the bench, arch your back, and plant your toes firmly on the ground. A lot of people try to bench by bringing the bar down towards their upper chest, and then pushing up for the lockout from there. What you really want to do is bring the bar out towards your lower chest, flex your lats while pulling the bar down to your lower pectorals, and then pushing up into your lockout from there. Performing the bench press in this way will provide you a lot more power so you can break through those stubborn plateaus and really build strength and size. Pin Press Another great workout for adding strength...