I have to say that being in “commercial” gyms all my young adult life, (before that shocking accident) I saw a lot of crazy and weird stuff. I saw things and I’m sure you have as well that just did not make any sense and frankly, ticked me off a little bit.
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Has this ever happened to you?
I’m sure it has multiple times, especially if you’re dedicated to your training sessions. So it’s gotten to a point where I can’t take it anymore. The annoyances have built up so much that something needs to be said. If you’re currently in love with building muscle then this article is going to be for you.
Okay, you’re probably thinking in your head right “duhhhh.” But listen to me for a second. How many people have you EVER seen in the gym doing some form of squats or dead-lifts 1-3 times per week? In fact, I think I can count all of these instances on one hand!
You know how beneficial performing these lifts are to building strength and dense, rock hard muscle. But why are you not doing them? Start doing them if you’re serious because the results you’ll achieve with these 2 lifts cannot compete to anything else out there.
A lot of people think that by going to failure day in and day out means that they had an awesome workout and can classify themselves as “hardcore.” BTW: going to failure simply means that you cannot perform another repetition within the set on the given exercise without breaking your strict form.
By going to failure, you are draining all of the life out of your central nervous system which will hurt your strength levels for the rest of your workout.
Let me ask you this…
What if you could train each muscle group 3-6x per week? You think you’ll get faster results? Of course, but in order to do this, you need to avoid failure at all costs. Always leave 1-2 reps in the tank per set on each exercise.
I always get asked questions like “how often should I switch up the exercises etc, etc...” Well, the truth is you really shouldn’t be changing up the exercises all of the time. The reason is because your body needs something to consistently adapt too. By keeping the exercises the same and increasing the amount of reps you perform, the weight, the density work, or the sets, you’re still following the progressive over-load principle and therefore, will become bigger and stronger as time goes on.
And this brings us into our next Commandment…
Let’s face it; these are the exercises that give you the biggest bang for your buck. If you’re not sure what I’m talking about, these types of exercises are any type of squat, dead-lift, pull-up, bench press, dip, push press, etc…
They’re going to allow you to use the biggest loads and give you that superhero looking body you always wanted. Plus they’re just fun to perform. I mean, who doesn’t like lifting huge weight?
How many of you actually keep track of your rest intervals? My guess would be only around 5% of people reading this post will do just so. This leads to a HUGE waste of time. There is a good principle that you should follow with your workouts and that’s Parkinson’s Law.
With Parkinson’s Law, you will fill up a certain amount of time with a given task when given that amount of time. So if you only give yourself 45 minutes to get in the gym and finish your workout, then most likely that workout will only take you 45 minutes to finish.
Another good example is to use this with your physique goals. If you want to get ripped up by a certain period of time, cut that deadline in half. By doing that, you’re going to sub-consciously buckle down and get serious in order to meet that deadline. Trust me, this voodoo mindset stuff works.
Back when I used to lift in commercial gyms, I would crank up the I-Pod, pull the hat down and get to work. And when I forgot the I-Pod or it was accidently washed, I would have the worst training sessions. I couldn’t stand to hear how “Bro A” got so wasted the night before and hooked up with some girl, then “Bro B” would chime in and basically talk about how the same thing happened to him.
Are you frickin' kidding me!
So much time is wasted socializing in the gym and this goes back to Parkinson’s Law. Go in there and give yourself a time to get in and get out. Stick to that promise. Crank up the tunes, pull the hat down or just don’t make eye contact. People might think you’re a weirdo, but who cares cause you can out-bench their squat and out dead-lift all of them combined.
You probably don’t understand what I mean by this right off the bat, but hear me out real quick. Supplements are not inherently a bad thing, in fact they are quite beneficial for a lot of people, but when it comes to building muscle, I feel a lot of people focus WAY too much on them, especially when the cost to benefit ratio is so darn small.
You really need to focus on the 80/20 rule. The most results you will see will come from the main 20% of what you are doing. Everything else is almost useless. For example, you don’t NEED a protein powder and all this other stuff to build muscle. Will it help? Slightly…
But to get anything more than the basics is really just a luxury. Here is a good list of the basics that have stood the test of time.
· Protein powders
· Fish Oil
And that’s about it.
I have seen this commandment broken so many times that it has raised my blood pressure levels significantly more than I can count on my fingers and toes.
The worst was when I had to use the squat rack to perform an exercise in which the name of this training device comes from and had some dweeb in there curling 65 pounds, contorting his body like he was just shocked by a tazer.
Listen, you want to be cool with all the other “serious” people in the gym?
Don’t perform barbell curls in the squat rack, plain and simple. I know it’s not a “muscle-building tip,” but it’s just way too serious not to include.
This one I particularly find very helpful, especially if you’re trying to build muscle without gaining any amount of body fat. After your workout, it is a proven fact that insulin sensitivity is increased. Therefore, there is more of a chance of your body taking those calories and using them to replenish glycogen levels and for growth and repair than any other time during the day.
This is why you should consume a good chunk of your daily calories right after your workout and mainly in the form of carbohydrates and protein. A little bit of dietary fat is okay, however I prefer digestion to be as quick as possible during this time and fat significantly slows down this process.
You can opt for a solid meal or a liquid meal.
This is a given. You should always being train hard and heavy in the gym. No pussyfooting around and focusing on stuff like concentration curls and tricep pressdowns. Throw some plates on the bar and get to work.
In the end, you can have the perfect program in the world written by the top physique expert in the galaxy. But if you’re not going to put in everything you’ve got into the program and in each and every workout, then you will never see results.
As long as you follow these commandments and place everything together, you will achieve anything you want with your body. It’s a simple fact. The building of your body takes time, patience, energy, and smarts.
Remember, Rome was never, ever built in a day. I know you have heard this before, but understand this important principle. You can have the body of a Greek God, but just understand it will take time. Utilize some of these principles above and you’ll be on your way in no time.
About the Author:
As the world’s top muscle-building superhero, Trey “3” Armstrong helps guys transform form scrawny to superhero in just 12 weeks with his trademarked 3-Step Muscle Building System. For his exact muscle-building blueprint that will help you build a bigger chest, massive arms, a wide back, and powerful legs, visit www.3StepMuscleBuilding.com
As the owner of Building Muscle 101, I am committed to providing you the best practical weight training advice. I've been training for over 24 years (and still train to this day!) and the advice and guidance I provide comes directly from my experience and knowledge.
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