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There also exist protein 20 True-Natural-Bodybuilding. Good sources of protein are milk.
Extra vitamins or minerals will certainly not stimulate muscle growth or body fat reduction. Fat Keep your fat intake limited. Carbohydrates Carbohydrates are the best source of energy for bodybuilders as they are easily converted into glycogen. Avoid sugars and other carbohydrates with a high glycemic index blood glucose levels increase fast after ingestion.
Adjust the size of your shakes to your personal needs. A high daily intake of protein is an absolute requirement to make muscle growth possible. Protein Shakes Protein shakes are the simplest. I recommend you to drink three big protein shakes per day in between your other meals.
Avoid saturated fats. Good sources of carbohydrates are vegetables. As a simple and healthy replacement for the commercially available post-workout supplements. This releases a total of about 90 gram of carbohydrates and 50 gram of 21 True-Natural-Bodybuilding. In the mean time I have tried many brands and kinds of protein powder. Meal Replacement Shake Let me also present how I make my favorite whole meal shakes that are rich in high quality proteins and carbohydrates.
Orange juice is contains by far the most vitamin B and C.
Also some muscle proteins are broken down during your workout and their amino acids mainly the BCAA's are used as fuel. I used to drink a gallon 3.
Although there is no substantial evidence that a fast post-workout recovery results in increased long term muscle gain. A total of about gram of glycogen is normally stored in your muscles and another gram in your liver. If you want an extra thick shake that digests more slowly and kills the hunger for a longer time. When I was still studying at the university and didn't have access to protein powder.
Add the following ingredients into your blender: Scientific studies have demonstrated that during the first 2 hours after a workout your body is able to recover its lost glycogen and muscle protein very fast and efficiently if the necessary nutrients are available in the blood. During an intense bodybuilding workout your body consumes about gram of glycogen.
Note that apple juice. Post-Workout Shake The main energy source for a bodybuilding workout is glycogen. Bodybuilding Diet Plan Also take a look at my concrete example of a good bodybuilding diet plan and my excel spread sheet you can use to build your own diet plan.
The glucose and the fructose from the fruit juices serve the glycogen synthesis in the muscles and liver. The amino acids from the whey protein serve the recovery of the muscle proteins. This results in a total of 8 small meals per day. One example is presented below. Good sources of fat are egg yolks. Great sources of protein are non-fat milk products. The diet plan consists of 5 solid meals and 3 protein shakes in between the meals.
The rest of your calories should mostly come from carbohydrates. Variation is a key aspect of every healthy diet. Of course there are countless ways to compose the meals in order to get the target calorie and nutrient content.
Bodybuilding Diet Plan Below I present a good example of a diet plan for a true natural bodybuilder who needs about calories per day.
Kcal Protein shake 1 banana g mL skimmed milk 30 g milk protein powder Lunch g tuna g pineapple g pasta g olives Protein shake mL apple juice mL skimmed milk 30 g milk protein powder 30 g whole grain wheat flour Dinner g turkey g rice g broccoli Post-workout shake mL orange juice mL skimmed milk 30 g whey protein powder Snack g muesli 99 86 97 41 Protein g Carbs g Fat g If you think you still need more fat.
If you want to build your own diet plan or customize this example to your own needs. According to my personal experience all types and brands of protein powder are equally effective. If you eat enough protein. Protein Powders Protein is without any doubt the most important nutrient for building muscle mass. There also exist milk protein powders referred to as isolates that are very low in lactose and therefore ideal for lactose intolerant people who have problems digesting milk sugar.
Whey proteins are digested by the body within approx 2 hours. And of course Bodybuilding. I personally consider protein powder as a normal food product rather than a food supplement because it is derived from natural food products such as milk or eggs and not by chemical synthesis water. Sports Supplements Despite the impressive marketing claims by sports supplement vendors and pro bodybuilders who are sponsored by them.
The best protein powders are made from milk whey and casein. Jos - Amino Acids Proteins are broken down into amino acids during digestion. The only sports supplements of which I believe that they may have real beneficial effects for bodybuilders are those discussed below.
The only effects they have on you are the placebo effect a positive effect based solely on the power of suggestion and the financial effect you are basically sponsoring the sport when you buy supplements. The slowly digesting casein protein powders are often recommended to be taken right before going to bed. Amino acids are rather expensive and 26 True-Natural-Bodybuilding. EAA's essential amino acids arginine. Creatine is however not a magical product.
You will experience increased stability of the joints. The levels of creatine phosphate in your muscles increase. It also has some drawbacks: All the beneficial effects disappear completely a couple of weeks after stopping creatine supplementation. You will be stronger and thus being able to lift heavier weights for the same number of reps. The pump in your muscles can become so pronounced that it can actually become inconvenient during some endurance exercises or physical labor.
As a result of the above listed effects you should be able to increase the overall intensity of your workouts. The main beneficial effects of creatine supplementation are: Your muscles will absorb extra water. In the past amino acids have been popular. Since the amount of creatine in meat and fish is very low about 5 g per kg and since most of us don't eat big quantities of it.
I don't believe that taking BCAA's branched chain amino acids. There are some concerns about possible negative side effects of long term use of large dosages of creatine on for example the kidneys and liver.
In contrast to most other sport supplements. Creatine Creatine naturally occurs in the muscles and plays an important role in the energy supply during exercise.
Some of these effects are definitely interesting for bodybuilders. Although the 5 beneficial effects that I listed above are in my opinion factually true. Some people's digestive system gets upset by creatine supplementation. The main sources of creatine in your diet are meat and fish. People who have high natural creatine levels or eat large amounts of meat and fish may not get additional benefits from creatine supplementation.
You can do more reps with the same weight. You will feel a more solid pump in your muscles during your workout.
During creatine supplementation I experience a body weight increase of about 6 pounds. All brands of creatine monohydrate are equal. I recommend everybody to try it out at least once to see whether you like it. You might consider choosing extra fine milled creatine monohydrate to facilitate its absorption. Especially the latter effect I like very much because it really helps me to prevent tendon injuries.
When I first tried creatine supplementation I was 25 years old. Creatine supplementation has never been able to help me increase my actual muscle mass beyond that level. Dextrose Dextrose is another name for glucose. During the rest of the day food products with slowly absorbing carbohydrates low glycemic index are preferred in order to provide a steady supply of energy to the body and to maintain the glycogen supplies.
Dextrose has the highest glycemic index of all naturally occurring carbohydrates. For optimal strength and endurance during your workouts it is very important that these glycogen supplies are completely restored before starting a new workout. The best moment to replenish exhausted glycogen supplies is during the first 2 hours after the workout.
Carbohydrate Powders During an intense weight training workout the glycogen stored in the muscles and liver is the main energy source. For those of you who like to optimize their carbohydrate intake there are some very handy carbohydrate powders available that can easily be added to protein shakes. Although I don't think that creatine supplementation has any permanent long term beneficial effects. I take my creatine powder 3 or 4 times per day.
During digestion most carbohydrates are broken down into glucose molecules that enter the blood stream and are transported to the muscles and liver where they are converted into glycogen.
Next to fructose and sucrose. Adding dextrose about 1 gram per kg of body weight to your post-workout protein shake is the most efficient way to replenish your glycogen supplies rapidly.
I get the best effects with a loading phase of 2 weeks with 10 grams of pure creatine monohydrate powder per day. Easily digestible food products containing lots of fast absorbing carbohydrates high glycemic index are recommended for this purpose. Ephedrine or its natural equivalent ephedra or ma huang does not belong in the human body and should never be used by true natural bodybuilders. Therefore you can replace part of the dextrose in your protein shake by maltodextrin in order to keep its sweetness limited.
The importance of vitamin supplementation is extremely hyped up by the heath care industry. Prohormones Prohormones are often sold as sports supplements. I don't know very much about them because I think that all supplements that have the word "hormone" in their name should not be used by true natural bodybuilders. In some countries including the US they are no longer legally available and they definitely should never be used by a true natural bodybuilder.
I do not recommend anybody to use additional vitamin or mineral supplements unless medical examinations clearly demonstrates a shortage e. According to many sources. Fine milled oats In contrast to dextrose and maltodextrin.
Prohormones are converted into real hormones usually testosterone or anabolic steroids by the body. Extra vitamins or minerals will certainly not increase muscle growth or body fat reduction. Vitamins and Minerals Vitamins and minerals are essential nutrients for a good health. Ephedrine is however a dangerous drug and prohibited by most anti-doping organizations. Maltodextrin Maltodextrin.
Fine milled oats are a great source of carbohydrates for throughout the day. When milled ultra fine they are very easily mixable into a protein shake and they provide a great smooth taste. Eating such high amounts of meat or fish can. Note that it is well possible to eliminate the need for sports supplements completely.
I believe it may be worthwhile trying them to prevent or treat joint injuries. These supplements are supposed to increase your natural levels of these hormones in a safe and legal manner. I also believe that from a health perspective. I do not think that creatine supplementation has any long term beneficial effects. If you are curious about which supplements you would find in my closet. In Europe they are even approved as safe and effective medical drugs for osteoarthritis. I don't know very much about these products.
Hormone Boosters All kinds of hormone boosters are currently on the market as alternatives for hormonal doping with testosterone. Conclusion The only sport supplement that I believe is really beneficial to all bodybuilders is protein powder. In each case. Glucosamine and Chondroitin Sulfate Several studies have shown that glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate may have beneficial effects for the health of your joints.
Also take a look at my section on supplement safety. I consider protein powder as a food product rather than a supplement. The only other sport supplement that true natural bodybuilders could benefit from is creatine monohydrate.
I believe that all other sports supplements currently on the market have no significant benefit for bodybuilders. Although I have never tried them myself. They are claimed to help relieve joint ache. Instantized protein is treated with lecithin in order to increase the solubility of the protein powder drastically.
Whey proteins are absorbed by the body within approx 2 hours. Protein Powders Explained Egg white protein powder is derived from chicken egg whites. Casein and calcium caseinate proteins have a slow digestion rate. In the morning and right after your workout. They are absorbed by the body within approx 4 hours. Egg white proteins have an average digestion rate. This results in short chain peptides and amino acids. Protein isolate is derived from a protein concentrate using a cold-filtration.
It is produced by removing the yolk from the eggs and then converting the egg white into a powder form. Hydrolyzed protein is enzymatically treated to form a hydrolysate. Whey protein concentrate is derived from sweet cheese whey using an ultra. Calcium caseinate is derived from fresh skimmed cow milk. Whey proteins have a fast digestion rate. Calcium caseinate protein is extracted from the casein fraction of the milk through acidification.
Calcium caseinate proteins are absorbed by the body within approx 7 hours. Milk protein concentrate is derived from fresh skimmed cow milk that is concentrated by ultra-filtration. Recommendations Milk protein isolate or egg white protein are recommended for lactose intolerant people who have difficulties digesting lactose.
It is great for post workout shakes as well as anytime you need a quick burst of amino acids. Calcium caseinate is a good choice for people who are trying to lose body fat. For all other people I would recommend milk protein concentrate or a mixture of milk protein concentrate with egg white protein. This ultra-filtration allows the whey and casein fractions to be extracted from the milk and then be dried into a powder.
Protein Powders Let me discuss first the pure and unflavored milk. As with all chemically synthesized compounds. Therefore I advise you to only use the purest form of creatine monohydrate that you can find. You don't want it to cause any short or long term negative side effects on your health and you certainly don't want to use any products that can cause cancer. Supplement Safety If you take a sports supplement you not only expect it to improve your performance. I believe I have a well enough understanding to form an own opinion on the safety and risks of various substances that are frequently used in sports supplements.
In contrast to the food and pharmaceutical industry. Although the supplement creatine monohydrate is chemically synthesized extracting it from meat and fish would be too expensive. Since they are prudently extracted from fresh milk and eggs.
Having worked several years in the pharmaceutical industry for the development of new medicines. Pharmaceutical companies. My preference goes to Creapure. Creatine Creatine is also a natural food component that is present in meat and fish. Decades of creatine supplementation and many scientific studies PubMed. If you want to read more on this. There exists some controversy about their safety.
I believe that the world-wide approved artificial sweeteners are probably some of the safest chemical additives currently used in the food industry when used at quantities not exceeding the allowed limits. Fortunately these sugar substitutes are not only used in supplements. Limit their consumption. Therefore all of them have been very thoroughly studied and tested before they were approved by the world-wide national health authorities after a stringent review process.
Artificial Sweeteners Low-calorie artificial sweeteners such as aspartame. Some of them e. Unfortunately I am not an expert in this field and there are just too many of them to be discussed here. Not only have all these chemical compounds been studied in dozens of well designed animal studies before being allowed on the market. Add some fresh fruit e. Aromas and other Additives Aromas and other additives are frequently used to improve the taste of sports supplements such as protein powders.
If using chemical flavoring substances. Because of their successful massive use for many years and extensive testing. Choose for natural flavoring substances with a long and broad history of safe use in the food industry. In the supplement industry. In the pharmaceutical industry these are all very thoroughly studied for toxicity. Use coupon code 5off Another source of safety concern. Other Supplement Components Most so-called active compounds that are used in bodybuilding supplements to increase muscle growth.
Use coupon code 20off Unfortunately the supplement industry in not much regulated and therefore no reliable studies are performed to ensure that all components used in sports supplements are safe for human use. Use coupon code 15off Conclusion If you want to use sports supplements. Even substances from vegetable origin cannot be considered to be safe by default. This basically means that they do not belong in the human body and should be considered unsafe until the opposite is appropriately demonstrated.
Keeping your Supplements Affordable If used wisely. Very affordable sources of complex carbohydrates are for example bread. More expensive can be foods that are high in protein such as meat pork and beef. Fortunately there are also some dairy products that are very reasonably priced while containing lots of very high quality protein. Make use of discount offers. How to Save on Food and Supplements A bodybuilding diet can be expensive.
Online shops are always less expensive. Keeping your Food Affordable I am not going to spend much time on discussing sources of fats and carbohydrates as these are abundantly available at very reasonable prices.
Don't buy high-end brands which cost a lot because of their marketing spending. Buy from an online store located near you to limit shipping costs. As not everybody can spend or wants to spend large amounts of money. Buy bulk products in big quantities that last for several months. Only buy pure products. Don't waste money on products packed in cool containers with fancy labels.
Good examples are skimmed milk. Very affordable sources of fat are flaxseed oil rich in omega-3 fatty acids that may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease.
Buy natural products without flavoring substances and sweeteners. As mentioned before the only supplements that will are really worth being used are whey and casein protein powders. Buy products packed in bags or generic containers.
If you live in Canada or the United States. If you live in Europe. Also take a look at the list of supplements that I specifically recommend. I recommend you to buy from MyProtein. It is my favorite store because of the high quality products. I recommend you to buy supplements from the brands Higher Power. It may well be possible that my way of training is not the only route to success.
These drugs fundamentally change the biochemistry of your body. Note however that the science behind exercise-induced muscle hypertrophy is still not completely understood.
If you watch some training videos of the professionals. If you train too often or not frequently enough. On this page I discuss all aspects of my personal training routine. After more than 20 years of experience. Basically you want to give the muscle just enough time to recover and to grow before you train it again.
Training Training is by far the most complicated and important aspect of true natural bodybuilding. I believe it is also correct to say that some aspects of effective bodybuilding training are quite universal. How frequently you have to train each muscle depends on how fast your muscles recover. People using anabolic steroids recover much faster than true natural bodybuilders.
For advanced true natural bodybuilders I advise to train each muscle group once per week. The Training Routine My training routine is completed once per week and consists of 5 different workouts and 2 rest days: I have developed a training routine that I believe works best for me.
The general structure of my training routine is described below. If you are new to this sport. If you are not using any drugs. I suggest that you consider following this training routine and principles that have proven to be effective for me. Having that said. I start my muscle workouts with a different exercise because I believe that the first exercise is always the most productive one.
Basically I always do 4 sets of each exercise targeting 10 quality repetitions reps. Intensity The higher the intensity of your muscle workout. There exists also something like over-training. If you train biceps and triceps on the same day.
I take a rest of about 3 minutes so that I feel strong and energetic enough to continue. Let's take a look at what I do for each individual muscle group. When you are over-trained. Before I start to train my 2nd or 3rd muscle group of the workout. For example. During each workout I train 2 or maximum 3 muscle groups.
I recommend you to take 2 or 3 weeks off after every 6 months of training in order to give yourself a chance to recharge mentally and to let your body fully recover from any physical stress accumulated during the past 6 months of heavy training. If you train chest and triceps on the same day.
The Muscle Workout For each muscle group I do 2 or 3 different exercises. Many aspects of your muscle workout determine its intensity. Every week. I limit my rest between consecutive exercises for the same muscle group to about 1 or maximum 2 minutes in order to keep my muscle pump and to maximize the intensity of the workout.
If you train upper back and biceps on the same day. It is very important never to miss a workout. All aspects of the muscle workout that are important for its intensity.
My workouts usually take no longer than 1 hour. Therefore it should be your goal to maximize the intensity of each of your muscle workouts. Another very important aspect of the training routine is the order in which you train each muscle group. Whenever you do miss a workout. It's best to start with the biggest muscle group that requires most energy. You also need fresh and strong biceps to do your upper back workout. I used to do lots of dumbbell presses for my shoulders when I was a teenager.
Upper trapezius I always follow my deltoid exercises with one exercise shrugs for the upper part of the trapezius trap muscle. Shoulders I do 3 different exercises for my deltoids delts. Abdominals While many bodybuilders train their abs multiple times per week with many sets and high reps.
I do 3 exercises for my triceps. Triceps The triceps muscle has three heads. Most of the time I use dumbbells flyes or presses as I feel that they work best for me. I don't separately train the inner part of my forearms as they get enough intensity during my heavy upper back workouts. One exercise targets the upper part of the latissimus lats wide grip pulldown. One will target the front part of the delts.
Upper and middle back The back is a complex group of big muscles. I rotate the order every workout. Since I only do one isolation excerise for the upper trapezius I usually do 6 sets of I do 3 or 4 different exercises to train my complete upper and middle back. Chest I do 3 different exercises for my pectorals pecs. One will target the upper part of the pecs inclined bench. Forearms I end my first workout always with one exercise for the outer part of my forearms.
Sometimes I add cable crossovers at the beginning or end of my chest workout. Cable crossover is a very good isolation exercise for the pecs.
Inner and outer thighs I finish my leg workout with 2 exercises. Calves As the calves are formed by two different muscles gastrocnemius and soleus. I change the order every workout. Now I prefer to start with one-leg hack squats this keeps the heavy weights from my back or one-leg leg presses. Before my lower back injury I used to do 3 exercises for my quads. The quadriceps workout is without any doubt the toughest of all. I immediately proceed with 2 exercises for my biceps. Biceps As my biceps usually already have quite a pump after my heavy upper back workout.
Hamstrings The hamstrings are a complex and strong group of muscles at the rear side of the leg. Exercises and equipment The exercises that I recommend and the equipment that should be used are described elsewhere on this website. I immediately proceed with 1 exercise for my lower back. Doing the hack squat first with one leg and then with the other.
I do 2 different exercises for my calves. The hack squat is an excellent quad builder. Lower back As my lower back usually already has quite a pump after my heavy hamstring workout. Quadriceps The quadriceps is a big. I usually do 3 different exercises for my hamstrings. I never save energy for my next set or my next exercise. If everything went well. Let's take a closer look at the repetition rep and define its 4 different parts: A rep starts at the bottom where the weight is in the lowest position and the muscle is fully extended and stretched.
At the top of the movement. Now let's define the "Quality Rep" as being a repetition that is executed in such a way as to maximize muscle growth stimulation. I can hardly walk. For very heavy exercises that are huge energy drainers e. A quality rep. I usually use the heaviest weights in the first set of my first exercise. During the up-phase the muscle contracts and lifts the weight up.
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I might sometimes take up to 90 seconds of rest between consecutive sets. At the bottom of the movement the muscle should be fully extended as long as possible without losing the tension on the muscle. During the down-phase the muscle extends and lets the weight go down. The Quality Repetition Lifting a weight sounds very simple. A repetition rep should basically result in two growth-stimulating effects. Lift the weight in an explosive way from the bottom to the top.
I train to failure in every set of each exercise. At the top of the repetition the muscle is fully contracted and the weight is at its highest position.
The down-phase should be controlled and take longer than the upphase. There must be no pause at the bottom of the movement. As I go all out in every set. Then slowly lower the weight in a controlled fashion to the bottom of the movement. In order to maximize the intensity of an exercise I always try to keep my rest between consecutive sets below 1 minute. I would rather advice to do a set or an exercise less than to dose your efforts. The Exercise Usually I do 4 sets of each exercise.
The up-phase should be a fast and powerful movement that takes maximum 1 second. I often see bodybuilders lift much too heavy weights in a cramped manner. A typical example of violating the principle of continuous tension is to lockout the elbows at the top of a bench press or the knees at the top of a squat. Continuous tension Continuous Tension is the most important principle that needs to be followed in order to maximize muscle growth stimulation.
Many bodybuilders fail to respect this very important principle. Free weights especially dumbbells nearly always allow you to train full range of motion.
About ninety percent of the bodybuilders fail to respect this most important principle. During the complete rep your mind should stay focused on the muscle. It basically means that you keep the tension on the muscle throughout the complete movement of the rep. Full range of motion Full Range of Motion is without doubt the second most important principle that needs to be followed in order to maximize muscle growth stimulation.
A quality rep should take in total between 2 and 3 seconds for most exercises. Bringing the dumbbells too close together at the top of a dumbbell press or fly is another typical example where the tension is lost at the top of a rep. There should be no moment of rest muscle relaxation during the entire rep or between consecutive reps at all in order to maximize the intensity of your set. The main reasons why many bodybuilders fail to follow the principle of full range of motion are ignorance.
As I discuss on another page. I want to focus your attention on 2 extremely important principles applied in the quality rep. It basically means that you contract the muscle as far as possible at the top of the rep until the muscle is as short as possible.
The main reasons why many bodybuilders fail to follow the principle of continuous tension are ignorance. Forced reps are basically reps in which you force up the weight during the up-phase because it is too heavy to lift it in the normal way.
Forced reps can be very effective as lots of the growth stimulation actually comes from the down-phase negative part of the rep. Drop Sets Occasionally I finish my muscle workout with a few drop sets. A full set of 10 quality reps usually takes me between 20 and 30 seconds to complete.
The upphase of a forced rep should basically take the same amount of time as the up-phase of a quality rep. This basically means that immediately after the last normal set of my last exercise I add a few extra sets drop 43 True-Natural-Bodybuilding. Many spotters. Depending on how well my estimate was. As I train to failure in every set.
In order to optimize the intensity of the set. The Set A set that is optimized for muscle growth stimulation should be an uninterrupted series of about 10 quality reps. Doing partial reps basically means that you don't follow the principle of full range of motion. When you don't have enough power left to do additional quality reps. Effective partial reps as well as forced reps should always follow the principle of continuous tension. I always do my sets with the heaviest possible weight that I think will allow me to do 10 quality reps.
This basically means that there should be no moment of rest muscle relaxation between consecutive reps. The Forced and Partial Repetition I recommend you to do 10 quality reps in each of your sets.
I may end up somewhere between 6 and 14 quality reps. Each individual rep obviously also follows the principle of continuous tension as explained in the paragraphs above. As I wrote at the top of this page. The exact location of the soreness can be a useful indication about which exact part of the muscle was targeted most by one specific exercise.
During a very intense workout of one of your biggest muscle groups. Learn and Adjust How to know whether your workouts are effective or not? That is a very important question because it allows you to learn from your experience and to adjust your training routine in such a way that it becomes more effective. The higher the intensity of your sets. You might even see some steam coming off your body. Your heart beat rate.
The more muscle soreness and stiffness you experience in the days following your workout. In each of those drop sets I do as many reps as possible. Because of various reasons. The third indicator gives you almost real-time feedback about the effectiveness of your set. There are a few other simple indicators that may give you an idea about whether the intensity of your workouts is high enough to result in some serious muscle growth. Whenever you feel this intense muscle burn.
The second indicator is a very useful one. The rest between consecutive drop sets is kept minimal a couple of seconds. In total it may take about 3 drop sets before complete muscle exhaustion is reached.
Intensity indicators There are three very important indicators that can tell you whether your workouts are effective or not. It is the well-known muscle pump. The first and ultimate indication is of course the speed at which your muscles grow and the final size your muscles have. I'm talking here about the muscle soreness that you feel in the trained muscle during the first 3 to 6 days after your muscle workout.
Bodybuilding is not the same as strength training. These are clear indications that you are not playing around in the gym.
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If you are a beginner. The only role that the size of the weights plays in an effective bodybuilding training routine. I recommend you to watch some good training videos. How much weight to lift? One of the biggest mistakes and misunderstandings among inexperienced bodybuilders is to think that you have to lift extremely heavy weights in order to stimulate muscle growth.
If you want to learn more about effective bodybuilding training. So the answer to the question is: Although this might sound logic at first sight. Conclusion Read this page again until you fully understand each aspect of it. I have seen countless small guys lifting extremely heavy weights without ever being able to develop any significant muscle mass.
Far more important are the form of your reps. They believe that gradually increasing the size of the weights they lift. A good exercise should place about the same force on your muscle at any phase of the rep bottom. On this page I will identify for each muscle group some of the most popular exercises of which I believe. Machines and cable exercises should be avoided whenever possible. If possible and if they can be performed with enough stability.
Exercise Selection Criteria Back to the Basics. Many of the best exercises have proven their muscle building capabilities throughout more than 50 years of bodybuilding history and were used by all great bodybuilding champions.
Some of these criteria are explained in detail on my page about training. Any exercise that has not proven to be a real mass builder is not worth being performed. Because it is very difficult to build muscle mass being a true natural bodybuilder. These basic exercises are usually simple to perform and represent very natural movements. Any exercise that doesn't allow you to perform quality reps.
So basically you need proven basic exercises that follow a very natural movement. Exercises performed with your own body weight or free weights barbells and especially dumbbells are by far the most effective as they usually allow very natural movements.
Being a natural bodybuilder. The order of preference is: Therefore isolation exercises. It is important. I strongly recommend you to only include those exercises in your training routine that are most suitable for building muscle mass. Exercises For each muscle group there exist many different exercises. I list my personal favorite exercises. The equipment needed to do all these exercises is discussed on another page.
Recommended Exercises For each muscle group. It's always good to have a pool of good exercises available for the same muscle. I do not describe all recommended exercises in full detail because most of them are well-known and described in detail on many other websites see for example muscleandstrength. Forearms For my outer forearms.
For the same reason my grip is rather wide for the barbell bench press which also reduces triceps involvement.
When I use an incline bench.
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This is by far the most powerful exercise for the abs that I know. I keep the angle of the bench rather small to avoid that my front delts will do more work than my pecs. Don't waste your time with machine exercises for your chest. When I do the wrist curls with a barbell I keep my arms straight. In order to get a maximal stretch of the pecs at the bottom of the reps. Sometimes I do a few sets of cable crossover. I always support my arms on a preacher bench. I let the weights go really low for my dumbbell exercises and I fully extend my ribcage.
Chest For my pecs I prefer dumbbell flyes. When I do dumbbell raises to the side. Don't waste your time doing million of repetitions of worthless exercises. I never alternate left and right because I feel this violates the principle of continuous tension by giving too much rest at the bottom of the rep. I always do hanging or lying leg raises. Dumbbell front raises I always do one-arm.
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For the dumbbell press and flyes I am very careful not to lose the tension on my pecs at the top of the rep by bringing the weights too close to each other. Don't do any twists because they will damage your spine rather than giving you a small. I sometimes do them one-arm at a time. I also like to do my one-arm dumbbell lateral raises while lying on my side on an slightly 48 True-Natural-Bodybuilding.
For both exercises I typically do 4 sets of Abdominals For my lower abs.
Shoulders I used to do many standing dumbbell presses and seated barbell presses on the smith machine when I was a teenager. Sometimes I finish with a few sets of standing reverse barbell curls.
During the crunch movement. I do palms-down dumbbell or barbell wrist curls. I stopped doing them. I do one exercise for the upper part of my trapezius. Biceps The best biceps exercises are: T-bar rows. Since my lower back injury I stopped doing bent-over barbell rows. I always rotate my wrists during the reps to maximize the range of motion 49 True-Natural-Bodybuilding.
The latter one is definitely the best lat exercise that I know as it allows an incredible great range of motion. Triceps There are many good triceps exercises. I used to do lots of pull-ups chins when I was a teenager. T-bar row. Upper trapezius After my delts workout. Upper and middle back The best exercises for your upper back lats are: While training your upper and middle back.
V-bar pulldown to your middle. The best exercises for your middle back lower lats and trapezius are: Don't do any cable exercises for your shoulders. Therefore you should focus on arching your back.
EZ-bar triceps extension on a slight decline bench. These exercises are all quite simple to perform correctly. This way these exercises also become more of an isolation exercise rather than a compound power exercise. I keep my arms slightly bent. Dumbbell raises are the greatest to develop your delts. Pay attention that you don't forget the principle of full range of motion. I prefer onearm dumbbell shrugs.
Occasionally I do one-arm dumbbell upright rows. Be careful not to give your delts any rest at the bottom of your reps. My favorites are: Quadriceps The best exercises to build your quadriceps are the barbell squat. Glute-ham raises put a very strong tension on the hamstrings in their extended position.
Calves The best exercise for the soleus muscle is the seated calf raise. Don't use too much weight. They have a similar effect on the hamstrings as barbell deadlifts do. The belt squat is a good alternative for the barbell squat for people with a back injury.
In all these exercises you have to go down as deep as possible to obtain a full quadriceps stretch full range of motion. The latter I prefer to do one leg at a time. The best exercise for the gastrocnemius muscle is the standing calf raise. The standing calf raise can also be performed on a machine. I would not recommend you to do any stiff-legged deadlifts or goodmornings as they can be very dangerous for damaging the intervertebral discs in your lower back.
I always make sure that I don't lose the tension at the top of the rep. Would highly recommend to anyone looking to change up there training and fine tune there diet. The workouts and programming are great!
Currently on week 3 of the 14 week program and am seeing some solid progress! Peter verified owner — February 7, I have been training for about 2 years. I know I am exercising the correct muscle groups, But have been disappointed with the results.
I cannot afford a Personal Trainer, so have got by with advice from gym buddies and online info. Having read this book cover to cover I now have an exercise plan that I can follow and track my results against and importantly I understand a lot more about muscle building and that just knocking out the same exercises every week will not help me achieve the results I want.
It has also explained a lot about diet where I have also been going wrong. Now looking forward to the results. Great read. Louisa Bopper verified owner — February 7, As a student, this has been an affordable alternative to personal training. Definitely worth a read. Sam verified owner — February 18, I bought this book after being recommended by a friend when I complained about my seemingly endless plateau.
This book is so in depth covering top to toe of everything you need to know. Only logged in customers who have purchased this product may leave a review.
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