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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.

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

An Overview of Bodybuilding Training Protocols

Bodybuilding Training Protocols

Deciding to make a change to your body and life is an important first step toward achieving greater fitness, strength, and self esteem levels. However, this decision represents the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the choices you'll have to make along your road to a better, healthier physique. We've already had some discussions about various diet strategies, and we'll likely return to that topic later. Starting with this article and for several succeeding installments, we're going to look at the various approaches to weight training and what they have to offer the experienced bodybuilder, the fitness enthusiast, or the rank beginner.

Weight Training = Muscle Building

Before we jump into the fray and look at the various systems of weight training, we need to get a grasp of the basic concepts that nearly all training protocols have in common. First and foremost is the fact that all weight training should be looked at as a musclebuilding activity. I know, I know ... I can already hear the protests from many women, athletes in traditional sports, and anyone else who is, in one way or another, somewhat hypertrophy-phobic: "I just want to tone up", "I don't want to get musclebound", "Big muscles are disgusting", etc., etc., etc.

Look, "toning up" is nothing more than losing fat and/or building muscle. Either way, we're talking about increasing the lean body mass index, or becoming more muscular. Similarly, added muscle weight, assuming it's naturally attained, is functional and will enhance, not hinder, athletic performance. Finally, the likelihood that any particular person will become "musclebound" from serious weight training and nutritious eating alone is very small. The muscular behemoths of the world are typically genetically predisposed to building large amounts of muscle (high normal testosterone levels; long, dense muscle bellies; small but strong joints), eat and train to the extreme, and sometimes even turn to drugs to enhance their muscularity. In general, though, building extreme muscle mass is incredibly difficult and doesn't happen by accident.

The Basics

So what are the basic principles which govern muscle growth through weight training? In brief, the factors that contribute to the productivity of a workout system are intensity, duration, frequency, and progression. Briefly, intensity is the difficulty of the exercise you perform.

Most exercise protocols have their own definition of intensity, but regardless of the context, if your efforts in the gym are half-assed, so will be your results. Duration is simply the length of time you are in the gym per workout, and frequency is how often your workouts are performed. As we will see later on, a corollary to these basic ideas is recovery, which happens outside of the gym.


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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.