On Heavy Muscle Radio last week - the World's Greatest Bodybuilding Radio Show- Dave and I bounced around training styles and what we feel was the ideal approach when prepping for a contest. Bodybuilders usually go a little crazy and alter their training so far away from their "off-season" training that it's sometimes unrecognizable. I think that's a huge mistake. I have always maintained that the training you did to build your body is the same training you need to do as you run up to a show. The hardcore and heavy training while dieting is, in fact, the main stimulus that allows the body to hold onto and keep that metabolic-boosting muscle while you drop calories to get ripped. If you make the mistake and "lighten up" on your workouts, and fall for the trap that more sets and reps will lean you down, often the muscle ends up looking lean, but lacks that crazy dense look.
Okay...it's time to confess...how many of you out there have watched movies like Rocky 1V and visualized yourself training out in the wild with only the most basic equipment possible. What about the hardcore prison movie where inmates are working out in the yard . . . ever imagine that was you?
Hardcore ‘boot camp' style training definitely appeals to the ‘macho gene'. However, let's be totally honest here, no one wants to put themselves out in the wilderness or into a maximum security prison to experience bare bones training!
QUESTION: Does eating a big breakfast really make any difference in getting lean or is that another nutrition myth?ANSWER: Hell if I would know! Ok, I do know. And it's not a myth. It's a true factoid. It's the most important meal of the day, next to the pre-training meal. Before getting into some of the facts and logic behind eating a large breakfast, let me give you my own personal experience going all the way back to 1988. That year, I was working with a really good local bodybuilder in Springfield Massachusetts. I had him was eating 2400-2600 calories a day and he was pretty damn lean, but not shredded.
In the last couple articles, we discussed the most prevalent side effects of anabolic steroids that I see in my every day practice. In this installment, we'll veer into the more common upper body injuries I see from lifting weights.
First, let's cover some basic terminology:
1-Sprain: Overstretching (partial or micro-tearing) of a ligament (connective tissue connecting bone to bone)
2-Strain: Overstretching (partial or micro-tearing) of a muscle or tendon (connective tissue connecting muscle to bone)
I have always been told that you must take in more calories than you expend each day to build muscle. Is that really true?
On paper, in a text book that’s true. In reality, there’s more to it than that. Certainly, calories are extremely influential in promoting gains in muscle mass. However, other factors play a role such as protein, fat, and carb intake, meal timing, and hormonal levels.
Many nutritionists will argue that you have to eat more calories than you burn to build additional muscle mass. That idea is limited in that you always have to consider other factors; specifically those listed above. Calories, say from carbohydrates, provide fuel for the muscles to do work
Okay, I have to confess that when it comes to ANY kind of energy drink or tablet I'm a total ‘re-hab worthy' addict. I mean if it's on the shelf in Vitamin Shoppe I have probably tried it!
The trouble with a lot of these products though is...they just don't work! I mean we have all read the bottles that pretty much tell us that if we drink the stuff inside we're gonna turn into a rampaging monster at the gym. The only trouble is that when we actually consume the stuff NOTHING HAPPENS and we have ‘just another workout'.
One hour prior to going to the gym for my typical late day workout, I tried BPI's 1MR (One More Rep) pre-workout formula for the very first time and, as a result, not only did I have a great workout but my arms are still so intensely pumped that I'm having trouble typing this review. In the next few paragraphs I'll give you guys a glimpse into my world over the last few hours so that you might get a better idea of what 1MR has done for me and how it's changed my pre-workout supplement regimen forever.
Lets' cut right to the chase; when it comes to getting lean, cardio is somewhat overrated. Anyone can sit on a bike for two hours a day and get lean but for the most part, as with training, there's a fine line between doing enough cardio and going overboard and doing too much.
In my book Everything You Need To Know About Fat loss (that was a shameless plug for you to buy it) I explain that cardio is simply a way to burn excess calories. Pretty straight-forward. You sit on a bike or run the stairs and you burn calories and, for the most part, the vast majority of those calories come from stored body fat. However, getting lean is not always a perfect math equation where you can sit down and plan out your contest prep based on the number of calories you expect to burn.
Capturing the imagination since its inception as a collaborative factor in muscle growth, creatine remains the quintessential hot topic in muscle physiology. If there were a continuum of sentiment on the ergogenic potential of supplements, creatine would lie favorably at the leading edge. A large body of work confirms that creatine is indispensable for muscular performance during repeated sets of intense exercise. Of interest, recent studies have provided insight into the versatility of creatine; shifting the paradigm towards satellite cell dynamics.
In the last article we discussed the top three side effects of anabolic steroids that I see among patients. In this installment, we will continue with the next tier-- the next most common side effects from gear that I encounter in my medical practice.