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Supported Single-Arm Dumbbell Row

Supported Single-Arm Dumbbell Row

Hold a dumbbell in your right hand, place your left hand on a bench in front of you, and assume a staggered stance, left foot forward. Hold your elbow in as you row the wight to the side of your torso. Do 10 reps, switch arms and leg positions, and repeat the movement.

Dumbbell Triceps Kickback

Dumbbell Triceps Kickback

Grab a pair of dumbbells, bend your knees and lean forward so your torso is nearly parallel to the floor. Tuck your upper arms next to your sides, bend your elbows, and hold your forearms about parallel to the floor, palms facing up. Simultaneously extend your arms straight back and rotate the weight so your palms end up facing each other. Return to the starting position. Do 15 reps.

Dumbbell Hammer Curl and Press

Dumbbell Hammer Curl and Press

Standing with your feet shoulder-width apart, hold a pair of dumbbells at arm's length by your sides, palms facing each other. Without moving your upper arms, curl the weights to your shoulders, and then press them overhead until your arms are straight. Reverse the move to return to the starting position. Do 10 reps.

Saturday, February 9, 2019

Best Ways To Build Big Biceps Faster

build big biceps

Ask anybody to flex and “show off their gains” and you can almost guarantee that the muscle they’ll tense will be their biceps, in a signature single, or possibly even double bicep pose. When you see people training on the TV and in the movies, they’re almost always curling a set of dumbbells in order to work their biceps, so it’s easy to understand why the biceps are considered the most popular muscle group to train by many “gym rats” and fitness enthusiasts.

When you hit the gym for example, you’ll no doubt make sure you never neglect your biceps because you’ll want to be able to fit into a T-shirt which fits loosely on your torso, yet clings tightly onto your biceps, and feels as if it could rip the second you happened to flex them. Of course we all want a set of huge and defined guns that we can display proudly whilst out and about, but unfortunately adding size to them is far easier said than done. If you’re looking to build big biceps faster, however, to show you that it can be done, take a look at these handy tips and you’ll be showing the guns off in no time at all.

Train Your Triceps

Wait, that’s a typo right, we’re talking about training the biceps, not the triceps?! Nope, it’s no typo, in order to build big biceps, or at least, in order to create the illusion of having big biceps, you will need to train your triceps very hard and very regularly. The reason for this is that, although you want big biceps, what you really want is big arms, as a small arm with a large bicep muscle looks absolutely ridiculous.

The triceps are a three-headed muscle that makes up the vast majority of your upper arm, so naturally if you build big triceps, you will, by default, have bigger arms. Large triceps along with a large bicep muscle will make your arm look much larger, more symmetrical, and far more in proportion than if you simply have a large bicep. If you’ve ever seen people who train biceps religiously, yet barely train their triceps at all, their arms will look incredibly small and skinny, yet when they flex their bicep, it will look as if they have a small tennis ball under their skin, which, for many, is not considered a good look.

Train Your Back

Ok, now we must be having a joke. This is an article about building big biceps, and the first two tips that we’ve shared have both talked about training different muscles. Nope, again, we’re not having a joke, and to prove so, just listen to our logic. Making your back bigger and more defined will not make your biceps look bigger in the same way as training triceps does, but the exercises you perform will make them look bigger. The biceps are a pulling muscles, which means that to train them, you have to pull the weight, rather than push it. Guess what is also a pulling muscle? Yep, the back. Many pro bodybuilders rarely train their biceps during the off season, because they get enough work when they simply train their backs. We aren’t recommending that, but we are recommending that you never neglect your back. The next time you’re performing a set of close-grip lat pull downs, after your last working set, just feel your biceps and feel how pumped they are. Many back exercises are compound exercises, which means that they train other muscle groups, especially the biceps.

Don’t Just Stick With Regular Dumbbell Curls

In order to train the biceps, you’ll probably already be well aware that you’re going to have to get used to curling to really give them a good working. However, don’t think that standard single, or double, dumbbell curls are the only exercises you should perform. There are hammer curls, seated double-arm curls, seated single-arm curls, EZ bar curls, preacher curls, and barbell curls, amongst others. Mix these exercises up, don’t just perform the same ones, and don’t always stick with the same weights and reps either, which we’ll learn more about shortly.

Switch Up Reps And Weights

As mentioned, in order to really build big biceps faster than normal, you will need to switch up, not only the exercises you perform, but also the reps and weights that you use as well. If you’re like most people, you’ll probably stick with the usual weight which allows you to perform 8 – 10 reps per set. However, now and then, go with a lighter weight and rep it out instead. Choose a weight that allows you to perform 15 – 20 reps instead. To begin with, it will feel light and easy, yet by the time you reach 15 reps or so, your biceps will burn and will feel more pumped than ever.

Run The Rack To Build Big Biceps

A great way of really finishing off any biceps session, and one which is guaranteed to help you build big biceps faster, is too, what is known as “run the rack”. By this, you should choose a basic dumbbell biceps exercise, the double-arm hammer curl for example, and should start with the lightest weight there, perform, say 16 reps, and then immediately jump onto the next set of slightly heavier dumbbells, perform 14 reps, and so on, getting heavier and performing less reps until you can’t physically perform another one. Your arms will literally feel as if they’re on fire by the end, and you’ll feel bigger and more pumped than ever before.

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Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Opti-Men Multivitamin

opti men multivitamin
A multivitamin is essential for your everyday health as well as building muscle. Opti-Men is a top-notch multivitamin for athletes and bodybuilders because it was geared towards them.

You will experience better energy, recovery and the nutrients needed to achieve your goals while maintaining general overall health. Absorption is spot on and the price although some may claim is rather high is well worth it for what you get in comparison to a generic multivitamin from your local drug store.

Also noted is the fact that this multivitamin has digestive enzymes built right in which you can’t say about most other multivitamins on the market. There is a slight pungent odor to the pill (common with multi’s) however there is no after taste present after swallowing.

You cannot go wrong with the highly underrated Optimum brand and equally important is the fact that these pills are easy to swallow. You will not be disappointed with this purchase.

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Simple Fixes for Bigger Arms Now

bigger arms

If you want to get bigger arms you just have to hit the biceps harder at the gym with more exercises and add them into more days during the week right?

WRONG. That is the most common mistake amongst people trying to get bigger arms. More is not always better and in this case it can be one of the hindrances holding you back from explosive arms.

Over-working your biceps to complete exhaustion every time you go to the gym does not allow them the proper time to recover and rebuild the muscle fibers. You have to remember that every time you do an exercise like pull-ups and rows that you are targeting the biceps indirectly as well.

Now that you are armed with a little more insight into where to correct your routine, try aiming for one directly targeted bicep exercise (barbell curls) one time per week for 4 sets. This should be within the constraints of a 3 day per week gym routine. Stop doing 4 different varied exercises directly on the bicep and try this tip that will allow more recover and growth time.

The Truth about the Tricep

Most people seeking big arms fail to realize the size of the tricep. Women love biceps and abs right? So no wonder why so many guys are in the gym doing biceps each and every day they are working out.

The tricep actually consumes a far larger portion of your arm than the bicep does making it an ideal muscle to target for arm growth. You will see much more explosive arm growth by focusing on the tricep too rather than ignoring it and only slaving away on the preacher curl.
In order to see your progress it is important to measure and log the circumference of your arm. Every few weeks you can take a new reading to see your gains, while you are on your quest to those 20” biceps.

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Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Running for Pleasure

Running for Pleasure

If you really want to give running a try, make sure you invest in the best fitting running shoes you can find! Next, plan a safe route and follow this beginning schedule.

If you are totally new to exercise, ease into movement. After a five minute walking warm-up, start with a short run every other day (even as little as 5 minutes) and follow it with 10 or more minutes of walking, or as far as you can or feel like going.Gradually increase the duration of each run in a 2x forward/1x backward duration plan.

Example – 5 minutes, 8 minutes, 5 minutes/8 minutes, 11 minutes, 8 minutes/11 minutes, 14 minutes, 11 minutes, and so on.

You can also begin your program with a Walk/Run routine, alternating 5 minutes of walking with short runs up to five minutes. You can use the 2x forward/1x backward method with your running segments. Gradually build up your running time to 30 minutes. Always complete your workout with a 5 minute slow paced cool-down and stretching of the calves, hamstrings, hip flexors and back.

While you are building up your running stamina, practice good running form:
  1. Run tall with good posture. Your trunk will lean forward from the hips slightly, but try to lengthen your body, lift your chest, and hold your abdominals in.
  2. Let your arms swing at a 90 degree angle between the chest and hipbone, not crossing them over your body. Your arm swing should compliment your stride. Relax your wrists and hands. Do not clench your fists.
  3. Power your stride from your thighs, hips, and buttocks muscles. Plant your heel on the ground first and roll onto the toes.
  4. Stay relaxed and peaceful
Take regular days off to prevent injury. Remember, physical training has 2 parts:
  1. Tissue breakdown – caused by the running
  2. Tissue regeneration - caused by the rest period.
Proper training and resting will strengthen your body optimally. Running every other day, and not two days in a row, is good injury prevention. When you are conditioned enough to train for a race, you may add an extra running day to your week.

When you can run continuously for 30 minutes, you can begin to adjust your running workout toward specific training goals. Some new training techniques may include:
  1. Train to cover extra ground. Once a week push yourself until you can run 2-3 times farther than normal distance. Longer runs will boost aerobic capacity
  2. Train for increased speed. To boost your anaerobic capacity and power, 1-2 times a week add several sprints into the middle of your running workout. To sprint, run faster than normal until you reach breathlessness, then back off to your normal pace and recover. This can be done 2-4 times in a run.
Tips for increasing your enjoyment of running include:
  1. Set running goals – for speed, distance, races, etc.
  2. Run with a partner
  3. Change the route when you get bored
  4. Record your progress in a log

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Sunday, September 30, 2018

Better Nutrition with the Food Guide Pyramid

Food Guide Pyramid

This diet method emphasizes overall health, focuses on the total diet, and is user friendly. No one food group is more important than another in the Food Pyramid and its use allows for flexibility with food substitutions.
This pyramid is divided into sections:
  1. Complex carbohydrates form the base or foundation of the Food Pyramid. These starches are high in vitamins, minerals, and fiber, and medium to low in fat unless the cooking adds fats. The recommended number of daily servings are 6 - 11.
  2. The second level is divided into vegetables and fruit. Vegetables are high in vitamins A, C, and folic acid, as well as fiber and the minerals iron and magnesium. They are low in fat unless it is added in cooking or processing. Three servings are recommended. Fruits are low in fat and high in vitamin A, C, and potassium. Two fruits are suggested for each day.
  3. The third level focuses on protein, divided between meat and dairy foods. Two servings daily from dairy products provide protein, vitamins, and minerals except for iron. Milk, yogurt, and cheese are dairy foods. Some dairy choices are high in fat. The meat group includes dry beans, nuts, and eg. The nutrients include protein, B-complex vitamins, iron, and zinc. Some choices are high in fat and the recommendation is two low fat servings daily.
  4. The top or peak of the Food Pyramid is fats, oils and sweets. Salad dressing and oils, cream, butter, margarine, sugars, sodas, candies, and sweet desserts provide calories without a lot of nutrients. However, a person may eat these foods sparingly for enjoyment without negative consequences.
The Food Guide Pyramid was designed to depict variety, moderation, and proportions. The size of each section reflects the number of daily servings. Many people use the Food Guide Pyramid for tracking their food intake because of its simplicity.
Using the Food Guide Pyramid does have its drawbacks.
  1. It does not limit food choices to those low in calories. A person using the pyramid needs to have knowledge of the approximate fat and calories in foods in order to make effective choices. The Food Guide Pyramid makes no attempt to point out individual high fat or high sugar foods within the individual sections.
  2. A person may choose the right number of servings from each group and still make poor nutrient choices if they use mostly processed foods and few raw fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
A person can use the Food Guide Pyramid wisely if they remember the goals of a nutritious diet:
  1. Adequacy - Choose the minimum numbers of servings in each section (6,3,2,2,2).
  2. Balance - One type of food is not overemphasized.
  3. Calorie control - Focus on the nutrient dense lower levels of the pyramid if you want extra food, but also watch the serving size!
  4. Moderation - Using some of the fats and sweets from the top of the pyramid sparingly adds enjoyment to the food.
  5. Variety - Within each section, choose different foods and experiment with new flavors.
Here is my personal experience with using the Food Guide Pyramid:
While I have great exercise habits, I tend to avoid any monitoring of my food intake, mainly because I love to eat! My excuse is that all the exercise is plenty to stay at the fitness level I want. despite the fact that I teach a nutrition course! So after noticing that I was starting to look and feel a bit less than my peak, I decided to bite the bullet and take a hard look at my eating habits. I used the Food Guide Pyramid, focusing on low fat choices. I drew pyramids on pieces of paper, and sectioned them off for the contents: Complex carbohytrates as the base, veggies and fruits on the second level, meat and dairy third,and the "other," fats and sweets, on top.
Some of my mental dialog:
  • "It's hard to eat that much."
  • "Wow I sure don't get enough complex carbs."
  • "I guess I like eating fruit and veggies in mass quantity."
  • "What in the heck HAVE I been eating?"
In two weeks - visible changes! The muscle tone is once again showing at a preferred level.
The moral: It takes a 50/50 relationship between food and activity for best performance and fitness (appearance, too).

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Thursday, September 27, 2018

Miracle Weight Loss

Miracle Weight Loss

The desire for instant gratification in a no-fail weight loss method can spur you into trying products that promise "miracle" weight loss. Among them are diet pills, vitamin supplements, herbs, and "thigh creams." These products are advertised in the pack pages of magazines, on radio and on television. The sale of them is a million dollar industry.

There are some obvious advertising claims that signal a weight loss product is a fraud. Beware if a product promotes:
  • "If you lose too much weight, discontinue immediately."
  • Wrapping the product around a specific body part to flush or burn fat from that area.
  • Reliance only on testimonials from satisfied customers.
  • "Magic" combinations of food and vitamins.
  • Weight loss without diet or exercise.
Diet gimmicks continue due to the common belief that ad claims must be true or the products wouldn't be around. But even with common food, there are a lot of weight loss myths. Some of these follow:
  • MYTH - Margarine has less fat and calories than butter
    TRUTH - Both are 100 percent fat and the same amount of calories. Some light margarines are whipped with water to lower the fat per serving.

  • MYTH - Chicken has less fat than beef.
    TRUTH - This depends on the cut of beef and the part of the chicken. Chicken thighs are just as high in fat as most beef.

  • MYTH - Non-dairy creamers and toppings are low-fat alternatives to cream.
    TRUTH - These contain the highly saturated fats of palm and coconut oil. Evaporated non-fat milk is a better choice.

  • MYTH - Choice and prime cuts of meat are lowest in fat
    TRUTH - These are highest in fat. Select less expensive cuts for lower fat content.

  • MYTH - Brown sugar and honey are better than white sugar.
    TRUTH - All these sugars have the same amount of calories per gram (4) and insignificant amounts of nutrients. They all promote tooth decay.

  • MYTH - To reduce blood cholesterol, stop eating eggs.
    TRUTH - Cutting back to 3 or 4 eggs a week is helpful, but reducing the total fat intake of the diet is most helpful for lowering cholesterol.

You can dismiss quick fix thinking and food myths and use a permanent approach to weight management. You can eat foods you enjoy, lower body fat, and keep it off. Moderate, achievable goals for weight management include:
  • Balanced meals of a variety of high fiber, lower-fat food.
  • Sufficient calories at regular times.
  • Regular exercise.
  • Lose only one or two pounds per week.
If there was one simple step that I would recommend to improve most people's nutrition it would be VEGETABLES. In fact, one of my personal daily goals is to make sure I include 3-4 servings of veggies in my daily food intake. (Even us "experts" need to work on changes, too.) Here are some ideas to add plant life to your food without noticing them as much:
  • Add extra grated veggies to spaghetti or pizza sauce.
  • Add a layer of veggies to lasagna.
  • Add two colorful diced veggies to casseroles.
  • Add veggies to low-fat sour cream or yogurt for potato topping.
  • Stuff veggies (squash, tomatoes, peppers) with rice, beans, or tuna.
  • Add grated carrots or zucchini to cakes and cookies when baking.

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Monday, September 24, 2018

How Much Food?

How Much Food

Do you give your body the best fuel so it can perform in the manner you wish, or do you fill up with the “cheap stuff?”

Looking at food from a different angle, do you view food as enjoyable or as medicine? Can we have fun eating and still maintain low bodyfat?

Many women eat too little, instead of too much, out of fear of gaining weight. Many normal women think they are fat because of society’s obsession with thinness. The semi-starvation food habits of these women make them vulnerable to nutritional deficiencies, more so than men. It is a woman’s right to concentrate on healthy eating rather than starving oneself to produce a body size you were never genetically programmed for. It is a woman’s right to ban diets, throw away the scale and make being healthy the important factor.

Even without resorting to a fad diet, chronic dieting by severely restricting calorie intake can produce unfortunate side effects.
  • Obsession with food and body weight
  • A sense of deprivation
  • Weight cycling
  • Eating binges followed by guilt
  • Self dislike
Food becomes and enemy and mealtime the battlefield. Fatigue is also related to poor eating patterns.

You are encouraged to focus on fitness, not fatness, by developing eating and exercise behaviors that will lead to good health. This includes an eating plan you can live with forever. Eating awareness is a lifetime of providing your body with the necessary nutrients it needs: protein, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, minerals, and water.
How many calories are needed for health and fitness? An easy way to figure this is:
  • Multiply your weight by 10 (EX: 130 x 10 = 1300)
    This determines the amount of calories needed for your basic body functions.
  • Add about half that amount for your activities (1300 + 650 = 1950)
  • If you exercise daily add an additional 200-300 (1950 + 200 = 2150)
This may seem like a lot of calories, but this higher caloric intake offers adequate energy to function and contributes to successful long term weight (fat) loss. One note: This calorie intake may not work for someone who has dieted for extended periods throughout life or who keeps her weight abnormally low. 
The next question is “What to eat?”
  • Eat three health balanced meals a day.
  • Limit fat, sugar, and salt.
  • Increase complex carbohydrates.
  • Focus on food that has high nutrient density, which means the food provides more nutrients for fewer calories. (Vegetables are the most nutrient dense food you can eat.)
Carbohydrate rich meals and snacks with some protein and a little fat will energize your body. A good food plan never eliminates an entire food category and the food can be found at the grocery store, not just at specialty food stores.

A food program that encourages making changes in eating habits one small step at a time can be simple and comfortable, as well as very effective.

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Ultimate 30's Workout

Increase the amount of testosterone and growth hormone your body produces by working multiple muscle groups and keeping rest periods short. For cardio, your lactate threshold can still be increased throughout your thirties, so intervals are king to counter any loss of lung power.

Ultimate 40's Workout

Short, sharp shocks are the way to fire up your body in your middle years - which means you can forget long-winded weights workouts. Vary exercises, intensity and timings to keep your muscles guessing.

Ultimate 50's Workout

You may not be able to lift the heaviest weight, but that's okay. Instead, stretching and yoga should be part of your training, and body-weight moves can replace heavy workouts. Do three sets of 10 reps of the following exercises to protect your joints and maintain muscle mass and testosterone.