Monday, May 22, 2017

Gain More Muscle Mass While Bodybuilding or Weight Training by Following These Simple Two Techniques

So you are working out hard, lifting heavy and frequently but not gaining desired muscle mass or definition anymore? There could be several reasons for this. We'll explain just two of them here.

-- You may have reached a "plateau?" I don't know what a plateau is! According to Webster's, a plateau can be several things. We'll go with definition #2 which seems to fit here: A period when something does not increase or advance any further; to stop growing or increasing. Definitely looks like definition #2 fits the bill!

The easiest way to get off that "plateau" is simply to change your workout routine. As Arnold would put it, you need to "shock" your muscles in order for them to continue to grow. Do you go to the gym and do the same workout in the same order every time you go? If so, try changing your routine on a frequent basis. Most experts recommend a change at least every couple of weeks. One time, you may do hammer curls when you first enter the gym and then you go onto the bench press and then onto dips for the triceps.

Your body will get used to this routine and try to figure out how to compensate or accommodate what you are doing to protect itself since you are tearing it up. Change it up! Next time try doing dips first. Then possibly continue with your delts as your second exercise for example. Continuously changing up your routine and keeping those muscles confused or "shocked" will help them to grow.
I, personally, like to do a full body workout (as taught by Joe Weider), three times a week but I never do the same workout two times in a row. One day, I may do legs first, then the next workout, traps first and then again on the next workout, lats first. Change the order, change the number of sets, change the number of reps and/or change the weight. All of this will confuse or "shock" your muscles and you should start to notice a gain once again.

-- To increase muscle mass, you will also need to increase your weight? Not your body weight, but the weight you are lifting. This is the unwritten first priority of all bodybuilders and can be one of the reasons you are not gaining the muscle mass you are looking for. It's a proven fact and the main building block in the sport of bodybuilding.

The "rule of thumb" used by most bodybuilders is to increase your weight on any particular exercise when you are maxing reps in each set and not feeling complete exhaustion of the targeted muscle. You should be lifting heavy enough where you can't possibly finish the last rep or even two. This should give you a gauge where you should be. Once you can lift a particular weight and complete all reps "without a sweat," it's time to increase. Bump it up! This will most likely happen approximately every thirty days but then that will vary depending on your workout routine, frequency, how long you've been lifting, etc.

So there you have it! A couple possible causes of not being able to gain muscle mass. There are more reasons so if you need additional help in this area, a little research will give you a few more options, but these seem to be the main causes.

One word of caution, if you are working out (lifting) alone, you should not attempt to "max out" in any exercise that may cause bodily harm if it cannot be executed and completed in a safe manner. Enjoy your workout but please be safe in order to lift another day!

See YOU in the gym!  TEAM JAQT   And don't forget to order your supplements today! 

Monday, May 15, 2017

Target Those Lat and Back Muscles More Directly During Your Workout by Changing to a "Gorilla Grip"

Do you need to target your back and lat muscles more directly during weight training sessions? If so, let's talk about one exercise that clearly focuses on that very muscle group, the Dumbbell Bent Over Row.

During the Dumbbell Bent Over Row (typically performed one arm at a time, kneeling on a stationary bench) wrapping your thumb around bar will bring the hand and grip more into play, cheating your back and lats from full focus which is the intent of this particular exercise. This is called a "closed" grip and can cause pain in the wrist as the hand is overworked and result in or aggravating injuries such as carpal tunnel, wrist strains, etc.

One slight change to your grip can make a huge difference to help you get that focus to target your back and lat muscles exclusively and help you to get that "V" shape you want from a hard workout or lifting session. Try using a "gorilla" grip the next time you visit the gym and pick up the dumbbells for the Dumbbell Bent Over Row. The correct term that everyone in the sport would understand better is the "open hand" grip. The open hand grip is when you do not wrap your thumb around the bar, which is actually the "natural" feel and normal position. The end result after using the "open" grip can be a more relaxed set and a noticeable concentration and focus on what a Bent Over Row was designed for, targeting the back and the lats.

An "open" grip though is not for everyone. Beginners should be aware that improperly performing the "gorilla" grip can cause the weight to roll out of the hand and drop to the floor, hopefully not injuring you or anyone near. It takes practice but can be mastered even for a heavy weighted row.
And even though we are only discussing one exercise here, once you become comfortable using the "open" grip, you will be able to adapt several other exercises in your work out repertoire as well. However, be extremely careful which ones you chose to use the "open" grip with. The "open" grip is also called the false grip as well as a thumbless or suicide grip. For those extremely heavy weighted exercises such as the bench press (straight, inclined or declined), the squat or any exercise over the head or chest, it is not recommended. You should use the closed grip to ensure safety and prolonged good health!

Monday, May 8, 2017

NUTRITION: I just finished a hard long work out, do I need carbs or protein? Actually both! If you work out hard in the gym and we’re not talking just an hour on the treadmill, then your body needs both carbohydrates and protein. Let’s explain.

Once consumed, carbohydrates are stored in the muscles as glycogen. Glycogen is actually used to supply energy for bursts of power. The longer and harder the work out, the more glycogen your body will require. And we’ve all felt what it’s like to run out of glycogen, right?  Your energy level will drop and it will become harder and harder for you to contract the muscle. For the more intense work outs (2+ hours), the rule of thumb in the industry is 3 – 4 grams of carbs per pound of body weight is required each day. Without enough carbohydrates, your body will make muscle to use as “fuel.” Definitely not what you want!   Eat the "good" carbs.  What are some of them?  Try some whole grains, a vegetable, a fruit or even some beans.  No leftover pizza!  Note: Personal carb requirements depend on your work out intensity as well as your body size.

Protein, on the other hand, helps to “rebuild” your muscles after your intense work out. The rule of thumb here (from the USDA) for strength and weight training, is the average 1.5 grams of protein per pound of body weight per day, not to exceed 2.0 grams/lb/day. Too much protein will not make any difference so don’t overdo. And spread out your protein intake throughout the day. Your body can only process around 30 grams at any one time, so spread your carb intake out over your 5 or 6 small meals that you are already eating per day.  I, personally, use protein supplements and shakes to get my daily requirement because I can't eat that much food.  If that is you, check out the supplements market to get the protein you want and need.