Stimulate; don’t annihilate.
If you want to increase your strength or muscle mass, the solution is obvious: Add some kind of resistance training to your workout routine, whether that’s lifting or callisthenics.
But did you know that you need to train in two different ways to maximise strength or muscle mass?
In today’s article, I’m going to cover exactly that and more, including:
Let’s start off with strength.
I have often said that it’s as complicated as you want to make it. The mentality of ‘just pick up heavy stuff’ will only get you so far. As you improve, your training must evolve.
Lifting is a game of diminishing returns.
When you start, you can grow muscle just by looking at a dumbbell. You will be able to lift more weight or do more reps in almost every session without having to think about it.
Alas, a few months later, your progress slows down. Sometimes, it stops altogether.
What do you do now? You need to become more strategic.
This article aims to arm you with some knowledge to keep getting results from your training.
First things first…
I am 10lbs heavier in the picture on the right.
Useful Links: July 2019 Update | One Month Update | Three Months Update
I haven’t written a “bulk update” since July 2019 because there was nothing new to add. I continued to eat, gain weight at what I considered an appropriate pace, train hard, and learn more about myself as a lifter, which helped me design better and better programs for myself overtime.
No one likes to read a story that starts well and ends well, so I figured I would wait until something interesting came along.
Well, what came along was a world-wide pandemic and an order from the British government to maintain social distance and stay at home as much as possible.
My gym and all others in the UK closed down at the same time as many other fitness facilities across the world.
I haven’t done a home workout since September 2018, when I moved from London to Portsmouth, went back to university, and joined a local commercial gym. At the time, I was only three months into serious lifting, so a pair of adjustable dumbbells still posed an adequate challenge to my strength.
I am a bit further along my training career now, so, at first, working out at home felt like a problem rather than a solution.
How was I going to make progress? Was I going to make progress? How much would I eat?
Read on to find out what I chose to do and why.
Nutritional supplements are not a substitute for a nutritionally balanced diet.
Over the years, sports supplements have risen in popularity not only among athletes, but also among average gym-goers. In fact, if you walk into most commercial gyms, you will be greeted by a line of vending machines selling protein bars, protein shakes, energy drinks, and allegedly “performance-enhancing” snacks and beverages.
Some popular websites like Bodybuilding.com sell their own supplement line, and many professional athletes become supplement “brand ambassadors” and advertise these products on their social media pages.
Off the internet, some coaches and personal trainers swear by certain supplements as the secret ingredient to their own and their clients’ incredible results.
In this article, I aim to cover:
A lot of people misunderstand what it means to have good cardio. Good cardio is when you are able to push the fight, and I’ve shown that in all of my fights.
Do you need cardio if you lift?
Some lifters like to pretend cardio doesn’t exist. Others do so much for fear of fat gain that you might wonder if they were not, in fact, marathon runners. Lastly, some only do strategic amounts whenever they need to lose fat, then they ignore it during their gaining phases.
Years ago, in the throes of my eating disorder, cardio (running and HIIT) was the reason I allowed myself to eat. When I emerged from that pit, I took my “vengeance” by banning running and HIIT from my training.
More recently, I have embraced a more balanced view of cardio as a tool to achieve athletic and physique-related goals. In this article, I intend to tackle the potential benefits of cardio for lifting performance, fat loss, and general health.
Ready, set, go!
A personal trainer who likes bodybuilding, superheroes, and bread.
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