Your Inability To Focus Is Killing Your Gains!

You will never reach your destination if you stop and throw stones at every dog that barks.” Winston Churchill

In our modern world, there are distractions coming at us from everywhere and at ALL times. Whether it’s our smart phones, computers, televisions, friends, the news, or our mothers, it often seems as if we can’t avoid it.

This is exactly why we need to prioritize focus. You see, focus is like a muscle. If you train it regularly, it will be nearly unbreakable. However, if you don’t train it, your ability to focus will grow weaker and weaker.

There is one quality need to develop focus, and that is self-discipline. The problem is, lack of focus usually also means lack of self-discipline. A person with no self-discipline is like a sailboat without a sail.

They will most likely never get anywhere, and more often than not, it will ultimately have unwanted and unforeseen consequences. Obviously, nobody wants that.

So why do so many people drift through life, only doing what they’re told? Following the already beaten path, with little to no true fulfillment? It’s very simple.

It’s hard to be disciplined. Especially when you don’t have an authority figure standing over your back, threatening you with consequences. Really think about that for a second.

As adults, should we really need someone else to hold us accountable for the things we want to achieve? If you ask me, the answer is a resounding Hell No!

True motivation comes from within, not without! So, ask yourself now if you really want to achieve that goal body. Now, ask yourself why. Why is it necessary for you. Why must you achieve your goal?

Identify why you NEED to achieve it. That reason should move you emotionally when you identify it. It should compel you into action. This is why you will become disciplined, because even though building self-discipline is hard, it doesn’t hurt nearly as much as regret.

No-one else can do it for you, and you won’t get fired, or punished, or fail school if you don’t do it. You’ll simply have to live with your unhappiness. Unexpressed desires are energy.

The stronger the desire the stronger the energy. If we don’t express it, it gets stuck inside the body. If you have children, you can easily see what I’m talking about.

Stop them from playing. Make them sit and be quiet. If you do this often enough, they will start to get into trouble. They will act out, and it will often be completely out of character for them.

This is because the energy within them wants to be expressed so badly, that it will come out in literally whatever way it can. YOU are exactly the same way.

If you don’t express the desires within your soul, you will find yourself doing all sorts of things. Smoking, drinking, drugs, sex addiction, video game addiction, a short temper, and struggling with depression.

I’m certainly not a doctor, but it is my experience that depression comes from repression. There’s no need to go through all of these things though, if we just make it a point to develop self-discipline.

There are SO many ways to do this that I won’t go into them. I will however, reveal my favorite way. Meditation. Meditation is very simple, I explained how to do it in my last article which you can read here: https://frommeatheadtomeatless.com/2019/12/19/think-and-grow-fit-part-2-how-to-use-meditation-to-take-your-physique-to-the-next-level/

If you practice diligently, you can develop laser focus with meditation alone. Self-discipline will come majorly into play here. Please be aware though, that with time, it gets easier.

It becomes second nature, the way that you naturally are. At this point, the only thing standing between you and your dream body or any other goal will be a decision to manifest it.

If meditation isn’t your cup of tea, worry not. You can cultivate focus in many other ways, and once you do, you will be shocked at the things you are able to achieve. It will be Much more than just your dream body!

With that being said, I wish you ALL the best, and remember. Successful people fail ALL the time. The difference between them and failures is that they get up, adjust their approach, and try again.

I LOVE YOU GUYS,

ADONIS

Think And Grow Fit Part 1: How To Use Thought To Finally Get Your Dream Body!

                                   “As a man thinketh, so is he.”  James Allen
He who says he can and he who says he can’t are both usually right.” Confucius
BRAIN-ACTIVITY-neurons-firing

Have you ever wondered why some people that go to the gym every day never change their bodies? While others who only go 4 or 5 times a week look like olympic athletes? Is it genetics? Is it steroids? Is there a fail proof method of achieving the body of your dreams? I Absolutely believe so! That’s why I’m writing this article. To show You just how to do that.

Welcome to the Think And Grow Fit Series! I hope you’re as excited as I am, because this is pretty life changing stuff. I know what you’re thinking. You’ve heard it all before and if it sounds too good to be true then it is. I agree 100 percent, but this is not too good to be true.

It is the result of the findings of many scientists, who have published their work, and countless men and women, who have put these findings into practice and verified them through no shortage of trial and error.

On that note, let’s dive right into this. The mind is the most powerful tool we have in this life. We can use it to literally sculpt our lives, and for ALL of us here at From Meathead to Meatless, our BODIES!

It is so powerful and infinitely complex, it’s full workings will probably never be completely understood. However, there are things which we do know. Wisdom that has been passed down through the ages and repackaged with a different name.

These basic truths about the human mind must be accepted before any of the information in this article can be applied. If you have trouble believing any of them I urge you to do your research. Learn from some of the greatest minds in human history.

Or, simply read and apply the wisdom from this article and reap the benefits. I’m personally a researcher. I want to research any new idea before I apply it to my life. It’s time consuming, but it also allows me to share things like this with you.

Here are the truths:

1. Everything is energy, including our thoughts.

2. We can choose our thoughts by identifying and focusing on what we want.

3. Thoughts affect our bodies and the world around us!

4. This changes Everything!

Okay, now that we got that out of the way, let’s move forward. As previously stated, since everything is energy, thoughts are energy. Thoughts, cause physical reactions in the body, known as feelings. Positive thoughts produce pleasant feelings, while negative thoughts produce unpleasant feelings.

This is important to note because you can use your feelings as a guide. If you’re feeling unpleasant, your thoughts are the culprit, although they may be subconscious, and if you are feeling great, again your thoughts are the culprit.

So, how do you apply this to help you achieve the physique of your dreams? It’s simple really. What we predominately focus on, we create the experience of in our lives. If you’re having trouble accepting this I urge you to Google the “double slit experiment” and Dr. Masaru Emoto’s experiments detailing the effects of thought and words on water.

Let’s talk briefly about our bodies. Our bodies are our true home, we can’t move out of them, and we only get one. It is good and wonderful to see the fullest potential of which they are capable!

Now, in order to get your dream body, you want to do a few things. Think about it often, not from a perspective of wanting it, but from a perspective of having it. For example. Visualize yourself with your dream body, feel yourself with it, affirm that you have it and how wonderful it feels.

img_3649

When you workout, picture the body-part you’re training as you want it to be. Speak it into existence, especially when you’re already feeling good! Print out pictures of the person that has your dream body and hang them up in your bedroom, on your bathroom mirror, even in your car.

The idea is that you want to be focused on having your dream body as often as possible. Every time you do this, you’re putting a little more energy into that picture in your mind.

This adds up! It’s like drops in a bucket. When the bucket is full, the manifestation occurs. Now, in the meantime, you will start to get ideas. Ideas about what to eat, what not to eat.

What exercise programs you should do. How often you should train. You MUST take action on these ideas or nothing will happen! They are your intuition guiding you.

Over time, you will see your body transforming gradually, so don’t get discouraged when it doesn’t happen over night. If you hold to your vision and always take action on your hunches, you will achieve your goal just as sure as the sun will rise tomorrow.

If you aren’t good at visualizing, don’t worry. You’ll get better. You could even try some guided visualizations to get you started. There are free ones ALL over the net.

Remember, there are no free lunches and what you put in is exactly what you get out. So, don’t try to rush the process in any way. Simply maintain a calm confidence that your dream body is already YOURS! You simply have to go along the physical path to see it realized in this physical reality.

This is really a simple process, but it works 10 times out of 10 if you follow it. Sure, it may take a long time, but the time is going to pass anyway. Now, I’ve done my part. It’s your turn. Identify and start creating your dream body NOW! With Infinite Love,

Amon 1-14198

Why You Should Think Twice Before Eating Vegan Mock Meats

“The First Health Is Wealth” Ralph Waldo Emerson

These days, going vegan has become a trend. Everybody’s doing it! I personally think that’s awesome, but as with everything it comes with some pros and cons. Due to the higher demand for vegan food there are new options popping up left and right.

These options are often delicious, such as Beyond and Impossible burgers. There are many others, such as ground meat, chicken, sausages, and so on.

Often in the excitement and celebration of having new vegan options we include these types of foods into our diet without giving much consideration as to where they come from, other than the fact that they’re vegan.

Many of us even go so far as to eat these foods daily. Keep in mind that most of these foods are new in the marketplace, and we don’t necessarily know how they’re affecting us on a long-term basis.

The Beyond and Impossible burgers in particular have become incredibly popular, and while they are definitely delicious, let’s consider how they may be affecting our bodies.

Our bodies are natural organisms, made to consume naturally occurring plants, and these “mock” meats are not natural. They are created in a laboratory.

They have chemicals in them, and while we may not know the extent of how harmful they can be long term, we should should proceed with moderation.

“Mock” meats also tend to be very high in sodium, so pay attention to that as well. Unless you are an athlete who sweats alot daily, you shouldn’t eat more than 1,500 milligrams of sodium a day.

Don’t buy Beyond Meats every time you go to the store. Have them once a week, or once every other week. When you go to vegan restaurants, don’t order the mock meats every time.

Instead, find dishes made with whole foods. Sure, cooking whole foods takes longer than whipping up a burger or hot dog, but it can save you money and trips to the doctor also.

As a vegan who consumed mock meats VERY regularly, I got colds and would get sick regularly. As a vegan who eats a whole food plant based diet, I haven’t had a cold in 3 years.

That’s not to say the same thing will happen to you, but I’m willing to bet that you will notice that you get sick significantly less, and if you do get sick, that it’s much less severe than it was before.

I’m certainly not telling you what to eat, I’m only presenting ideas that work well for me and people that I know. At the end of the day, the only person that can choose what goes in your mouth is YOU!

And I believe it’s fair to say that you deserve to feel healthy and vibrant on a daily basis. Remember though. As with all things, moderation is key.

Stay Healthy Fam,

ADONIS

A Simple And Practical Way To Begin Weight Training

The first step towards getting somewhere is to decide you’re not going to stay where you are.” John Pierpont Morgan

Facetune_07-10-2019-02-02-11

 

So, you’ve decided to begin a weight training program, but you’re not sure where to start. There is so much conflicting information out there, it can be a challenge just figuring out what will work best for you. While there are many factors determining your ideal training program, there are a few basics that essentially apply to all beginners right off the bat. Due to all the complex information available about this subject, my chief aim is to make this as straight-forward and simple as possible. With that being said, let’s get right into it.

 

As a beginner in the weight room, the best thing you can do is to keep things very simple. Resist the urge to do fancy exercises and exotic programs simply for this reason, the basics are the most effective things you can do to improve your body composition and your overall health. So, what are the basics? They are compound (multi-joint) movements. Why would you do this? They work more muscles at a time the, then isolation (single-joint) movements.

 

In other words, you’re doing more in less time. This is not only more efficient for building the body, it’s also time efficient. Time efficiency in the gym is super important because when you’re training for too long, aka more than an hour, cortisol aka the stress hormone begins to rise in the body. Cortisol inhibits muscle growth and fat loss, which is a big no no! Also, as a beginner, the body responds to even a small stimulus, and isn’t conditioned to recover from a significant amount of work.

 

It is for these reasons that it makes sense for a beginner to utilize a full body three times a week routine. There should be at least one day of rest between workouts so doing your workouts on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday would be ideal. However, if Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday, or any other combination of days work better for you then by all means go for it. The exercises you select for your routine should all be basic compound movements, as I said earlier. Examples of basic, compound movements are: Deadlifts, Squats, Barbell rows, Chin-ups, Leg press, Military Press (esp. When performed while standing) , Clean and Jerks, Snatches, Dips, Etc. You can pick five of these exercises and perform 3 sets of each for eight to ten repetitions. A sample program would look like this:

 

Exercise:                                                   Sets                                                                 Reps

 

Deadlift                                                      3                                                                    10

 

Squat                                                           3                                                                    10

 

Bench Press                                             3                                                                    10

 

Chin-Up                                                      3                                                                    10

 

Military Press                                           3                                                                   10

 

For the chin ups, you can use an assisted chin-up machine if you need to. If your gym doesn’t have one, lat pull-downs would be a great option as well. Rest sixty seconds between each set and control the weight on the eccentric(negative) part of the movement. Repeat three times a week increasing the weight used in each each exercise every week by about five pounds. This will ensure that you are progressing consistently, provided you are eating a balanced diet.

 

That’s all there is to it. Stick with this program for as long as it is effective, which could figuratively be indefinitely, and I promise, you will not only improve your health, but also create phenomenal changes in your body chemistry. Print this article out, write it down, or whatever you have to do, and take it to the gym with you. If you’re unsure of the form on an exercise, look it up on YouTube. Remember, it doesn’t matter where you’re starting from, or even where you finish, but the distance that you travel. All the best.

Facetune_02-10-2019-18-54-17

Adonis

 

How to Stay Motivated to Crush Your Fitness Goals

“People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing. That’s why we recommend it daily.” Zig Ziglar

model m9

Often, in the fitness community, there is a rush to achieve a certain result as quickly as possible.

This leads to the use of steroids, growth hormone, ephedrine, and other harmful and unnatural substances. It may seem like no big deal to experiment with these kinds of drugs, but in reality to use these drugs is to cheat and misuse your body and mind. Like it or not, harming yourself to look good or be stronger is self-abuse.

This kind of abuse comes as a result of low self-esteem, and though it temporarily increases confidence, it is unsustainable in the long run and ultimately leads to even lower self-esteem. Remember, bodybuilding is an act of self love.

Any act putting one’s health at risk for the sake of vanity is not in line with true bodybuilding. Keep this in mind when temptations to take shortcuts come along. Bodybuilding is a journey, not a destination.

Still, with all that being said, how does one stay motivated day in and day out for decades? There is no simple answer to this question.What motivates some is of no consequence to others.

I’m sure you’ve heard that to stay motivated one needs a strong why. A strong why allows us to push through difficulties that would otherwise make us quit. People get into bodybuilding for all sorts of different reasons.

I find that on the surface it doesn’t really matter what gets someone into bodybuilding initially. What ultimately keeps us around is love. Some love the art of bodybuilding, while others love the challenge.

Some love the release, while others love the health benefits. There is no right way to be motivated, ultimately we are all motivated by love of something.

Take some time to think about what you love about bodybuilding. When you are connected to your love of bodybuilding, day to day motivation is almost effortless for the most part.

So what about those who don’t love bodybuilding? What about those who hate training and eating in a balanced way? I believe everyone loves something about bodybuilding, some of us just have to look harder to find out what that something is.

Working with a trainer can be very beneficial in this regard, as a good trainer is generally passionate about fitness, and passion is contagious. Knowing what you’re doing early on can help you to achieve your goals in significantly less time.

So then, what if someone doesn’t love anything about bodybuilding? Well assuming someone truly didn’t have a love for any aspect of bodybuilding, to that person I say, find a form of exercise you do love.

One that doesn’t feel like work. One that makes time fly. It could be biking, dancing, martial arts, gymnastics, hiking, swimming, jogging, calisthenics, or any other of the endless possibilities.

This is a far too often overlooked aspect of anyone’s health and fitness. At the end of the day, I bodybuild because I love it. I love training, being disciplined with my eating, and watching my body progress.

If I didn’t love it, there’s no way I would’ve trained almost daily for 17 years, and eaten a bodybuilding style 6 meals a day for almost just as long. Some people love training, but don’t enjoy being disciplined with their eating.

If this is you, figure out a way to get what you want, while still progressing toward your goals. Hating your training or diet is a sure sign that you won’t last. What you have to realize is that will power is a finite thing, and when it runs out, it’s gone.

That’s when you give into temptation, skipping workouts, abandoning your diet, which leads to feelings of guilt and shame, and the cycle repeats. You’re much better off creating a lifestyle where you can achieve your goals gradually, taking on new challenges as you’re ready. This is sustainable because it’s not based on deprivation and abstinence, but balance and moderation.

Conclusion

Let’s recap the tools to staying motivated long term.

  1. Steer clear of shortcuts. This is a marathon, not a sprint. Pace yourself, and enjoy the process.
  1. If you love it, you’ll stick with it. Therefore, find a form of exercise you do love. Maybe you don’t love every aspect of it, but you should enjoy it overall.
  1. Figure out your why. And make it meaningful. More than just, “I want to lose such and such weight.” Why do you want to achieve X Y Z? Get specific. Find out what emotions are attached to achieving that goal for you.
  1. Work with a trainer. This is optional, but can be a tremendous investment in your health.

Inevitably there will be times when you feel more motivated than others, but if you implement these tips, I guarantee you’ll be well on your way to achieving your fitness goals.

me b&w

Adonis

How to Build Bicep Peaks That Will Stop Traffic

Introduction

“I visualized my biceps as mountains. This allowed me to develop my biceps much more than if I had pictured them only as muscles.” Arnold Schwarzeneggar

arnold for fmtm

In bodybuilding, developing every muscle in a symmetrical way is paramount. However, there are a few muscles that are and have always been favored by most. These are considered the show muscles.

They are the muscles that the eyes are first drawn to. Think about it. When you first see a muscular person, where is the first place you look. Nine times out of ten it is at the chest and of course, the biceps. Namely, the bicep peak.

When someone asks us to flex, we automatically know that they are talking about flexing our biceps. A well developed bicep peak takes any physique from great to extraordinary, but many people believe having a great peak is genetic.

This would mean that for those who are not born with a great peak, there is no hope. This is a misconception, and with the right mindset and work ethic, almost anyone can develop a great peak.

I’ve witnessed it first hand on myself, and also on others. You see I didn’t always have a great bicep peak, even once my arms got to 18 and a half inches, my peak still lacked.

It wasn’t until I learned a few key principles that my peaks really began to develop. These principles worked like a charm for me, and they can for you too, but keep in mind that everyone is different and has to find their own ways of training.

Use this only as a guide. My hope is that it will lead you down a path of discovery. Discovering that there is much more to training the biceps than you had previously imagined. Let us get into it.

What Exactly is a Bicep?

Let’s briefly discuss the anatomy of the bicep. The bicep is composed of the bicep brachii, which consists of two heads, the long or outer head, and the short or inner head, and the brachialis, which is an underlying muscle that gives the bicep height and thickness when developed.

The primary function of the biceps is elbow flexion and also supination of the wrist. This is why even though the biceps are trained during virtually all back movements, the optimal movement for training them is and always will be the curl. However, there are dozens of variations of the curl.

Variations of Bicep Curls

The biceps are a relatively small muscle group, and therefore should not be trained with excessive volume. Three sets of three exercises twice a week for a total of eighteen sets a week is plenty.Very advanced lifters can do more at times as long as they are able to recover from it.

A good way to know if your bicep routine is effective is to measure the biceps every six to eight weeks. If they are growing, you’re on the right track, if not, it’s time to reassess your routine and diet.

For every muscle group, a basic compound movement is generally performed first in your routine. In the case of biceps, this movement is the barbell curl.

Although it’s not technically a compound (multi-joint) movement, it allows you to go the heaviest, and train the entire biceps effectively. In general, this is a good movement to start with, but in some cases there are other movements that are ideal for beginning your routine.

One example of this is if you have been training for at least two years and beginning each workout with barbell curls, and your biceps are still a weakness. In this case, for whatever reason, be it technical or structural, your biceps are not being fully stimulated during the barbell curl.

It would be wise then, to start off with a more strict movement to isolate and pre-exhaust the biceps. Some good movements for this are, preacher curls, incline curls, lying cable curls, or even concentration curls.

These movements make it hard to incorporate any muscle besides the biceps. They will give you a great pump, strong contraction, and get your mind in your biceps. This will make it easier to feel barbell curls later.

Keep your reps higher, between 8 and 15 and never going below 6. This is because when you go to heavy when curling other muscles, namely the lower back and front delts tend to take over.

Focus on feeling the biceps, not on lifting the weight. Follow this up with a more basic movement, like barbell or alternating dumbbell curls. You could also do cable curls with a low pulley.

Follow this up with an exercise for peak such as guillotine curls, high pulley cable curls, or dumbbell preacher curls, and you will have a solid routine for growth, so long as you progress over time and eat adequately.

If you start with barbell curls you could do dumbbell hammer curls next, or cable curls with the rope attachment. From there you would finish with a peaking exercise.

Technique

Technique is paramount for maximizing results, and it varies for everyone depending on their unique structure. Figuring out and perfecting the best technique for you takes time, but there are some basic guidelines I’ve found helpful for most.

Here they are. Don’t go too slow. Use a good speed, especially on the positive portion of the reps. Going too slowlywill result in more type 1 muscle fiber recruitment. Type 1 muscle fibers are responsible for a more slim muscular look.

This will result in toned arms but not much of an increase in size in my experience. Utilizing a faster tempo will generally result in more type 2 muscle fibers being stimulated. This will result in a big increase in size over time.

Tips

Now that you have an idea what exercises to perform, and how to set up your routine, let’s discuss a few tips to really maximize your time in the gym.

Tip 1: Keep constant tension on the biceps. Do not rest at the bottom unless you’re doing rest-pause reps at the end of a set. This applies the time under tension principle, which is crucial for bicep growth.

Tip 2: Don’t go too heavy. The biceps are only so strong, and if you pick up more weight than your biceps can handle your lower back and front delts will help.

Tip 3: Relax the wrists and forearms. The forearms assist during all bicep movements, since we are grabbing something. Especially if the biceps are a weak point,aim to fully relax the wrists and forearms and put as much tension as possible on the biceps.

Tip 4: Biceps not responding to regular training? Add techniques to increase your intensity such as, rest-pause, drop-sets, supersets, holding peak contractions, etc. to really wake those guns up.

Tip 5: Train the biceps frequently. Twice a week minimum to keep protein synthesis elevated and growth consistently occurring.

Tip 6: Monitor rest periods. Resting too little or too much will negatively affect gains. Aim for around 60 to 90 seconds depending on how quickly your biceps recover from a given movement.

Tip 7: Squeeze! Every rep squeeze the biceps at the top.

Tip 8: Visualize how you want the biceps to look while you are training them. This may seem esoteric, but I can tell you it works!

Tip 9: Flex your biceps in the mirror often, to build a strong mind muscle connection.

Tip 10: Don’t overtrain the biceps. They don’t need a ton of volume, just to be properly stimulated. If any bicep workout takes longer than 30 minutes then you are resting too long and or not training hard enough.

My biceps are over 18 inches, and my bicep workouts typically only last around 20 minutes. However, this is a hard and focused 20 minutes, and at the end, my biceps are toasted.

Conclusion

There you have it. The biceps are a very simple muscle to train, but to sculpt them to perfection takes a tremendous amount of effort and will. Our minds are truly our strongest muscles and in order to develop the biceps to their full potential we must utilize not only weights, but our mental faculties as well.

There you have it, if you will incorporate just a few of these tips into your biceps training, you are sure to build peaks that would belong on Mount Olympus. Now train hard and eat properly, I’ll be watching you and counting your reps.

me flexin

Adonis

How to Bring up Weak Points

“My attitude is if you push me towards something that you think is a weakness, then I will turn that perceived weakness into a strength.” Michael Jordan

front relaxed

In bodybuilding, the idea is to create the illusion of perfect balance, symmetry, and proportion. Ideally this seems simple and straightforward, train everything equally and you will create balance throughout the physique. However, this is not the case, and if it were, every bodybuilder would be walking around with perfect symmetry, resembling a statue carved by Michelangelo himself. The truth is that body parts develop differently due to several factors. This is what we will be addressing in this very article, along with how to overcome these factors and build a physique worthy of being immortalized on Mount Olympus.

Why Everyone Inherently Has Weak Points

No one wants weak points, and for this reason we typically ignore them and keep training as usual, as if hoping they’ll magically vanish one day. This often has the opposite effect, exacerbating our weak points as our strong points continue to grow consistently. Among the many factors that cause weak points are: Genetics, poor mind-muscle connection in certain muscle groups, lack of intensity, overtraining (particularly in smaller muscle groups), and simply the way we are naturally put together. For example, someone with long arms and a short torso is usually going to appear to be lacking in arm thickness. Someone who’s short with a wider waist is going to look blocky, etc. If any of the above describe you, don’t worry. It’s all fixable. It isn’t your fault that you have weak points, it is however, your duty to do something about them.

Bringing Up Weak Points

So how do you bring up weak points? It varies from person to person, and bodypart to bodypart, however, with dedication and patience, any weak point can always be drastically improved. The following is a list of ways to bring up weak points. Give one or two methods a try, and if they work, continue implementing them. If not, try other alternatives, but just remember, the most important thing is that you have your mind made up regarding exactly what you want to achieve.

1.Train more intensely. This is the most basic principle when bringing up a lagging bodypart. Often we are lacking in intensity. Let’s say someone is lacking in the medial or “side” delts for example. It is hard to train them to failure because when they start to get fatigued you have to swing the weights up to keep working them which takes most of the tension off of them and puts it on the traps and lower back. Because of this, I find that the best way to fully develop the side delts is to train them with alot of volume. Every muscle is like this, it has its own preference and it is on You, the bodybuilder, to figure out what that preference is.

2.Learn more about training that particular bodypart. I believe the best way to learn is hands on experience, however, when bringing up a weak point, often it can help to learn about what its functions are. This will help you understand why you would choose certain movements in your training program, and what the most effective movements are. You can also research different methods of training that bodypart that you haven’t tried before. Assuming you’ve been consistent with your current routine, something completely new will often prompt your body to add some new muscle.

3.Lighten up your weights and focus on mind-muscle connection for a while. Too often we believe that big weights equal big muscles, and while this is true in some cases, such as when doing compound movements, there are some instances where going too heavy can hinder or prevent progress all together. Let’s take rear delts for example. They are a small area that is stimulated with heavy weight when training back, however, if we try to use heavy weights on rear delt specific exercises, the back and traps are going to take over the movements. This prevents us from getting deep fatigue in the rear delts and thus, hinders our development and creates a disproportionate look. The same is true with virtually all bicep movements, most tricep movements (with the exception of close grip bench presses and tricep dips), and generally all isolation movements. A good rule of thumb to follow is to never go below 10-12 reps when doing an isolation movement. This will ensure that you’re using a light enough weight to really utilize the mind-muscle connection. It will also increase time under tension, an important factor for growth. Most importantly though, it will aide you in minimizing the involvement of assisting muscles.

4.Train weak points more frequently. Research shows that muscle protein synthesis is increased for 48-72 hours after training a bodypart. This suggests that training a bodypart every 2-3 days is optimal for growth. If you are only training a muscle once a week, consider cutting your current workout in half and training said bodypart twice a week. Add more as you can handle it. For example, you could train arms on Tuesday and Friday. This will keep muscle protein synthesis elevated and ideally, produce more growth. Also, you could do a main workout for a bodypart, then a feeder workout 3 or 4 days later. A feeder workout is a low volume pump workout where nothing is done to failure. The idea is just to bring blood into the muscle to provide it with nutrients and stretch the fascia.

5.Stretch that bodypart daily. Stretching is one of the easiest, and most overlooked ways to improve your physique. First and foremost, stretching can create good posture. Good posture will automatically make your physique look significantly better, even without changing body composition. Correcting bad posture can lead to better technique and the correction of muscle imbalances. Another benefit is decreased risk of injury. As you know, when you’re injured, you can’t workout. If you can’t workout, you can’t progress. It can also help improve mind-muscle connection. It increases range of motion, which leads to better development. Lastly, as an added benefit, it’s good for you in general.

6.Visualize daily how you would like that bodypart to look. This one is slightly different, as it’s not a physical thing. Visualization is very powerful, just look at the studies on how visualization has affected high level athletes’ performance. I have found that if I can clearly imagine how I want a bodypart to look, and I persist with this vision, that is exactly how that bodypart develops. Give it a try, visualize how you want a bodypart to look while you are training it, and also when you think about it throughout the day. Arnold and many other greats have said this was crucial to their success.

In Conclusion

All of these methods will assist you in achieving your goals, but keep in mind, nothing will work unless you do. You have to really want it, and be willing to put in the time. That about wraps it up. Have some weak points? Give some of these methods a try and watch them turn into strengths.

Facetune_13-10-2018-13-33-22

My Best Tips and Tricks for Building Muscle on a Plant Based Diet

“It is health that is real wealth, and not pieces of gold and silver” Ghandi

me outside jeans

There are many misconceptions about being vegan, not the least of which being that it’s hard to build muscle. This notion probably comes from the fact that there is a learning curve, meaning when you go vegan, you don’t usually know much about what you’re doing.

You will know why you made the switch, and maybe have an idea about what to eat, but as far as knowing how to eat to consistently build muscle on a plant based diet, it’s a specialized knowledge that eludes many of us.

For me, it has been a process of trial and error figuring out exactly what to eat, and sometimes a pain in the ass. I’m now at a point where I’m cruising. I know how to eat to build muscle, lose fat, or maintain easily.

That being said the hardest part of it all is getting past that learning curve. After that, it’s smooth sailing. That’s why I decided to write this article, to give you some tips and tricks that will help you navigate your way to success on the plant based diet alot more quickly and effortlessly than i was able to.

If you apply what you will learn in this article, I guarantee that not only will you maintain every ounce of your hard earned muscle, you’ll build more. If you’re tracking macros every day, you know how many calories you need daily, and roughly how to break them evenly into several smaller meals.

This leads me to my first point, don’t start eating less calories. Some people think it’s hard to get alot of calories on a plant based diet, but this could not be further from the truth.

There are many plant based foods that are high in calories including: avocado, nuts, seeds, high quality oils such as grapeseed oil, dark chocolate, and many plant based junk foods to name a few.

Most of these are delicious and nutritious, so getting adequate calories should never be a problem. Keep in mind that junk food is not meant to be staples in your diet, but may be used in moderation to keep things fun and your calories high.

Now let’s get down to the nitty gritty. There are three main macronutrients. They are carbohydrates, fats, and protein. Most carb sources are vegan friendly, as well as most fat sources.

Where it typically gets tricky is the protein as plant based protein sources typically differ from omnivorous ones. Whereas an omnivorous eater typically gets their protein from meat, eggs, and dairy, as plant based eaters we typically get our protein from, beans, nuts, seeds, plant based protein powders, tempeh, vegan meat substitutes, and more.

These are all great options, however my favorite is red lentils. They are high in protein, quick and simple to make, and best of all they’re super versatile. You can make taco meat from them, burgers, soups, you can put them on salads, or eat them with rice , potatoes, and quinoa.

You can season them however you want, they never have to taste the exact same way. My second favorite protein source would have to be chickpeas. Of all the legumes, chickpeas are probably the healthiest.

They are loaded with a variety of micro-nutrients such as fiber, iron, zinc, phosphorus, B-vitamins and many more. They are also packed with protein which makes them the perfect protein source for plant based eaters.

Add all of this to the fact that they’re versatile, and you can see why they are the second most widely consumed bean worldwide after soybeans.

Those are my personal favorites, however all legumes are great plant based sources of protein, while simultaneously offering numerous health benefits.

Though I don’t recommend it as a staple, many of those following a plant based diet include mock meats as a regular part of their diet. Many plant based meats are high in protein, taste delicious, and are very simple to prepare, which is why they are so popular.

I personally don’t eat mock meats, except on rare occasions. This is because they were my main protein source when I first went plant based, and One winter I got four colds. This was a record for me and I was frustrated, so I decided to adopt a healthier diet.

My first move was cutting out mock meats. Since doing this, I have not had so much as a cold in nearly two years. That being said, it’s okay to indulge once in a while, but as I said before, don’t make them a dietary staple.

Next, let’s move on to soy. Soy is a bit controversial due to the fact that some believe it raises the levels of estrogen in our bodies. Soy does contain a form of estrogen called phytoestrogens.

In reasonable amounts, they have not been shown to increase estrogen in humans when ingested. There are various studies out there, and at the end of the day you’ll have to draw your own conclusions.

I’ll just say that many men include soy as a regular part of their diets and are very healthy. I personally limit it just as a personal preference. Also, keep in mind that things like tofu and mock meats made from soy are highly processed, and are not the healthiest form.

Therefore, I would suggest consuming them in moderation. For those who decide to make soy a regular part of their diets, I recommend a less processed form such as edamame or tempeh.

When it comes to carb and fat sources, they don’t usually differ much when switching to a plant based diet. Basic carb sources would still be rice, potatoes, and sweet potatoes.

Basic fat sources would still be avocado, various nuts, and seeds. For meal prep, pair carbs and protein or fat and protein, don’t mix carbs and fat often unless you are in the off-season or being lean just isn’t a priority for you.

Fruits and vegetables can be consumed freely, due to the fact that they are low in calories and high in micro-nutrients. Don’t be concerned about the sugar in fruit, it is not the same as table sugar and does not affect your body the same way.

The only things you need to be concerned with are getting enough calories as plant based foods tend to be lower in calories than meats and other animal products, and getting a wide variety of whole foods.

This will ensure that you get a variety of nutrients so that your body can stay healthy and function at it’s highest capacity. It’s easy to overlook how important it is to get a wide variety of nutrients from whole foods, as many of us are mainly focused on getting gains.

Think about it like this though, a healthier diet means a stronger immune system and less inflammation in the body, which not only means rarely getting sick, but also recovering more quickly from training.

This means you can train more frequently and have fewer layoffs due to things like colds and the flu. In other words, eating healthier does help you to make more progress over time, more so than just hitting macros every day.

My next tip is regarding supplements, and while there are many that may be beneficial, I’ll focus here on the supplements that I feel will assist you in building muscle. Basically every bodybuilder takes some form of protein powder, so let’s start there.

I have tried many plant based protein powders and trust me I’ve seen the good, the bad, and the ugly. Many have given me gas and bloating, which means they aren’t easily digestable.

Not to mention the embarrassment of letting a fart rip at the worst possible moment. Also, when something isn’t easily digestable you don’t absorb many of the nutrients in it.

This is why the best plant based proteins are fermented in my opinion. I’ve found them to be the most effective, and some even have probiotics in them. This allows you to digest them efficiently and absorb that all important protein.

My next tip, and this is my biggest secret when it comes to supplementing, is amino acid tablets. Don’t forget to make sure whichever brand you go with is derived from vegan sources, and is highly digestable.

This may require a bit of research, but is well worth it in the end. I take a highly digestable amino acid tablets several times a day, and I credit them with allowing me to build muscle consistently, even when my calories are on the lower end.

There are many other supplements that can be beneficial, such as creatine and glutamine. Even things like beet juice for enhancing the pump. The list goes on, but for me personally, I keep it basic. Protein and amino acid tablets are my staples.

The logic behind this is that assuming we are creating a stimulus for muscle growth via weight training, if we keep the body anabolic (in a muscle building state) at all times then we will ideally maximize muscle growth throughout the day.

This works like magic for me, I consistently build muscle which is what we’re all looking for! My next tip and this applies to everyone regardless of if you’re plant based or not is to always keep your training brief and intense.

This means training for no longer than 45-50 minutes of nonstop getting after it with absolute laser focus. Look around your local gym. You will see many people there training for an hour and a half to two hours, or even longer.

This would be fine if they looked great, but more often than not, most of these people barely even look like they train. This is because it’s not how long you’re in the gym that gives you results, but how intense your workouts are.

Another common mistake I see is people training like power-lifters. Lifting weights that are too heavy to optimally stimulate muscle growth. This leads to rest periods that are too long, sets that don’t last long enough, a lack of intensity, and being in the gym for too damn long!

The result is and always will be lackluster results. If you want results than you must forget about socializing until after your workout. Use the restroom before your workout.

Make sure that once you start your workout it will be your only focus until you are finished. Keep rest periods brief, in the 30-60 second range unless you want to be a power-lifter.

If you were to follow this principle and nothing else, I guarantee you would double your results. Now for my last tip, and this one is often overlooked, which is unfortunate since it plays a huge part in the success or failure of your training program.

Visualize, visualize, visualize! Visualize what you would like your body to look like. Do it daily, especially while you train. When you train a body part, imagine it as you would like it to be.

This is so beneficial for motivation, and when you visualize yourself with a certain body consistently, for some reason your body seems to develop into that image.

I know this ones kind of strange, but if you’re willing to give it an honest try, I think you’ll find it to be tremendously helpful. Well, there you have it, my best tips for building muscle on a plant based diet.

Apply them, I know they’ll serve you well. Lastly, remember that you never have to sacrifice health to build muscle or get shredded. Now go make some gains. All the best.

Facetune_28-12-2018-01-29-17

Advanced Bodybuilding Techniques for Taking Your Physique to the Next Level

“For me, life is continuously being hungry. The meaning of life is not simply to exist to survive, but to move ahead, to go up, to achieve, to conquer.” Arnold Schwarzenegger

me outside jeans

I’d like to begin this article by giving you a little background about me. I am a natural bodybuilder with 16 years of training experience and a great physique to boot.

I also have 9 years of personal training experience and am certified by the National Academy of Sports Medicine. I am also plant based and I have experience bodybuilding on an omnivorous diet as well as a plant based one.

The reason I tell you all of this is because, as they say, the proof is in the pudding. I never take advice about training from someone that doesn’t have the physique to back it up.

For this reason I am including recent candid shots of my physique as proof that I know what I’m doing and it has worked very well for me. If you’ve been training for three or more years and are looking to take your physique to the next level naturally, this article is for you.

If you’re a beginner, perhaps you could pick up a few tips as well, but this article is geared mostly towards the advanced lifter as for the sake of saving time, I won’t be covering the basics here.

There are many aspects of training, including frequency, intensity, sets, reps, splits, and mind muscle connection. We’ll be delving into each aspect and lightly touching on the science of things.

However, you can easily read scientific articles on each aspect of training, I’d like to focus more on what has actually yielded real life results for myself and my clients. Without further ado, let’s get right into it.

Training frequency

Let’s discuss training frequency first. There are many different schools of thought regarding frequency, ranging from high frequency high volume, to low frequency low volume, to everything in between.

I have tried them all, beginning with a standard three working sets of three exercises as a beginner, and gradually increasing volume, eventually adopting a high volume style.

After training this way for years, out of curiosity I switched over to high intensity training, trying it with a very low frequency due to extreme soreness, and gradually increasing frequency.

Through all of these training protocols my physique looked great, so there’s no doubt that they all work if you do, but by far, my physique has always looked the most muscular when training with a high volume, high frequency routine.

There are many things I attribute to this, but I believe the main factor is that with a high volume routine, you’re able to hit each muscle from so many angles, and get more contractions.

You are also able to master movements more quickly, since you get so much practice performing them. There are some drawbacks though, as high volume is more time consuming and you have to eat more food to grow due to increased caloric expenditure.

That being said though, in my experience, nothing is going to give your physique a more polished and 3D look than high volume training, performed properly, along with adequate rest and sound nutrition.

However, keep in mind that muscle protein synthesis is elevated for only 48 to 72 hours after training, so be sure to train any lagging body parts twice a week, once with a full workout, and once with a feeder workout.

Perform the feeder workout 48 to 72 hours after your main workout. Ideally, this will keep muscle protein synthesis elevated at all times in those lagging muscles.

A feeder workout is just a shortened workout with a focus on getting a good pump, as opposed to lifting heavy weight, or training to failure. Keep this in mind and never train to failure in a feeder workout. In general I’d say high volume workouts are only for the truly dedicated, since they take a greater time commitment.

me mirror

Training Splits

The next thing we’ll discuss is training splits. There are quite a few different training splits, the basic full body training three days a week, upper, lower split where upper body is trained one day, lower the next, usually followed by a rest day, and repeated.

Push, pull, legs, where you perform all push movements on one day, pull the next, then legs, usually followed by a rest day, and what is now called bro splits, where you train less of the body on a given day but with more volume, such as back and biceps.

When performing a split such as this, each muscle gets trained less frequently, sometimes only once a week, and for this reason bro splits have been deemed ineffective, unless you are on steroids.

This is simply not true, as myself and many of the people I know have used this kind of split and gotten great results.

For those who just want to stay fit or are limited on time, high intensity training performed once or twice per week, with a full body or upper lower split, would give you the most bang for your buck.

However, for those of us who want to actualize our full potential in the gym, more effort is required. But just what split is most effective? A split that allows you to hit each muscle group with high volume on a frequent basis.

Remember that high volume is crucial if you want to bring out those subtle nuances in the muscles that bodybuilders possess.

me mirror 3

Sets

The amount of sets of a given exercise can vary greatly from one, to as many as ten. However, most of us fall somewhere in the middle of this range and do around three to four sets per exercise.

I have gone as low as one set a la Mike Mentzer, and as high as eight a la Vince Gironda. Both have worked to an extent, but I’ve found that generally three to four sets works best for me.

This is because it allows me to do a wide variety of exercises and get a good amount of work from each of them. I also do 1 to 3 warm up sets of each exercise, usually the 3 warm up sets are done on the compound movements, with 1 to 2 being done on isolation movements.

I’ll do anywhere from 10 to 20 reps on these sets and never take them to failure. That is why I consider them warm up sets, they are not intense enough to count as working sets.

This equates to a very high amount of volume being done for each muscle group, which creates a bodybuilder look to the physique. What do I mean by a bodybuilder look?

Do you know how some guys are big and muscular, but other guys are not only big and muscular, it also looks like someone blew air into their muscles? That roundness is attained by, among other things, a very high amount of volume.

In conclusion, a high amount of concentrated work equates to a high amount of muscle. This obviously isn’t for beginners and it isn’t totally black and white, but generally speaking, may be used as a rule of thumb.

Now as for the high intensity philosophy, one set is all that is required. Basically, after warming up, you would do one all out set, the repetitions would be slowed down to about 2 to 4 seconds on the concentric and eccentric portions in order to achieve greater time under tension, aiming for about a minute or slightly longer.

Each consecutive workout you have to beat your previous workout by increasing the weight or reps, however you should always strive to beat your previous best with any training style.

Two of my favorite techniques are drop sets and super sets. They are a great way to take your workout to the next level and are easily applied. For drop sets, simply pick a weight you can do a certain number of reps with, then perform those reps and immediately drop the weight by around thirty percent or more.

You can also do a double drop set, which is the same, but you drop the weight a second time. Sometimes I’ll even do triple drop sets. What a pump! My favorite thing about drop sets is that you can use heavy, moderate, and light weights, all in the same set.

This effectively hits the type 1 and type 2 muscle fibers and also pushes the body to the limit, forcing it to adapt as long as adequate calories and protein are being consumed.

Supersets are performing two exercises back to back with little to no rest in between. This can be done for opposing bodyparts like chest and back, or for the same bodypart. Supersets are a great way to save time, and amp up your workouts as well.

As I said before though, all training styles that I’ve utilized have worked to some extent, but the best results have always come from high volume training. So, the take away here is, generally speaking, high volume works best for building muscle, however, there are exceptions to this.

Like for me my calves respond best to high intensity lower volume workouts. My forearms respond best when taken beyond failure, so remember to pay attention to your body.

Most muscles have a preference, but some grow no matter what. Those are your strong points. Your weak points are muscles that don’t grow unless you figure out specifically what they respond to, which can be an arduous process.

Keep in mind that genetics do play a large part here, but combined with passion, a great work ethic, and patient consistency, incredible things can be achieved. I didn’t do high volume training for at least my first 3 years of lifting.

I stuck to 3 sets of 3 to 4 exercises on each body part, always aiming to beat my previous workouts in weight or reps. In conclusion, get to know your body. What are your strong and weak points?

What does it take for your weak points to grow? It may take years to figure this out, so fall in love with the process. Also, generally speaking, more work is more effective for building muscle if your body can handle it and it must be high quality work.

me mirror2

Rep Ranges

When it comes to reps, there are two main variables to consider. The amount of reps, and the quality of reps or the way in which reps are performed. First, let’s discuss the amount of reps.

There are many different rep ranges for bodybuilding, but most fall somewhere in the 6 to 12 rep range. This is due to the fact that when you go below 6 reps time under tension usually isn’t sufficient for muscle growth, and when you go above 12 reps, the stimulus is usually so light that you don’t hit the deeper thicker type 2 muscle fibers.

Your body also calls on your aerobic systems when performing very high reps, as opposed to your anaerobic systems which are responsible for muscle growth. Generally it is believed that lower reps, 4 to 6 or even 1 to 3 are predominantly for building strength, while reps in the 6 to 10 or 8 to 12 range are best for muscle size.

Having utilized almost every rep scheme out there I’ve learned a few things. One, they all work to some extent to increase muscle size and strength, and two, a wide variety of rep ranges is most effective when it comes to building size and strength.

Pyramid sets are a very effective way to achieve this, since you start off lighter and gradually go up in weight. I find it most effective to start with 12 to 20 reps for one or two sets.

Then increase the weight so I can barely complete 10 reps, increasing it again on each successive set so that I can only get 8, 6, and sometimes only 5 reps.

The last set is usually a drop set, meaning I do a heavy weight for as many reps as I can, let’s say 5 reps. Then I’ll do around 30 to 50 percent less weight and complete as many reps as I can with no rest.

This gives me a ridiculous pump which stimulates sarcoplasmic hypertrophy (basically a size increase in the muscles caused by increased glycogen storage), however, I’m also using very heavy weight, which causes myofibrillar hypertrophy (a size increase in the muscles caused by increasing the size of myofibrils).

This gives me the best of both worlds, and keeps the muscles guessing which means they will continue to respond. It also keeps things fresh mentally, which keeps me from burning out due to only doing one type of training.

Another effective technique for utilizing both sarcoplasmic and myofibrillar hypertrophy is to do one heavy, lower (4-6) rep day based around compound movements and a separate, lighter, higher (8-12) rep day based around isolation movements.

In order for this to be effective though, you need to be training that body part twice a week. In conclusion, a variety of rep ranges is most effective for building muscle as it allows you to take advantage of all avenues of growth.

How Reps Are Performed

The other major factor concerning reps is how they are performed. There are many different ways to perform reps, however there is one major difference between how a bodybuilder performs a rep and how a weightlifter performs a rep.

When a weightlifter performs an exercise, their primary goal is to lift and lower the weight, whereas when a bodybuilder performs a rep, the primary goal is to contract the muscle.

It is for this reason that I believe as bodybuilders we should squeeze the muscle being worked as hard as we can on every rep. This will recruit more muscle fibers and result in increased separation between the muscles which will make them pop more.

We should also perform burns, partials, rest-pause reps, and isometric contractions. The reason being is that these techniques will not only keep training exciting, they are also crucial to achieving maximum muscularity due to the fact that they increase intensity.

Another variable is the speed in which the reps are performed. There is the standard half to one second concentric and eccentric, speed reps which are reps performed quickly in a rhythmic fashion, explosive concentric and slower eccentric, negatives which generally are done with a heavier weight and a 7 second eccentric, and then generally slower reps.

I have experimented with reps as slow as a true 4 second concentric and 4 second eccentric. If you’re in tune with your body, you will feel how each exercise feels best, and that could change from day to day.

For instance, one day you may feel pullups best in a quick rhythmic fashion, and the next you may want to do them slowly. Always rememver that variety will keep the body guessing, and there are certain advantages and disadvantages to each style and they will all stimulate growth in their own unique ways.

Rest Periods

Now let’s talk about rest periods. Almost everyone I’ve ever witnessed training, has rested for too long between sets. This is detrimental to the success of a training program, because it lowers intensity, and allows some blood to escape the muscles being worked.

In other words, you lose some of your pump. To maximize sarcoplasmic hypertrophy, we want to create and maintain a maximum pump throughout the course of our workouts.

Most people don’t do this intentionally, they talk, or look at their phones, or stare off into space and don’t realize that two or sometimes even five or more minutes have passed.

In order to prevent this, it is best to watch a clock or timer between sets. Having a workout partner can also help with this, since their sets will usually take thirty to sixty seconds to complete, giving us just enough time to rest, get set, and begin our next set.

There are different rest period recommendations for different goals, but the general rule for building muscle is to rest for one to three minutes. I believe three minutes is too long.

Don’t get me wrong, there are times when it can be useful, such as when one is going heavy on compound lifts. Keep in mind though, that this type of training is mainly for increasing strength and not as effective at increasing muscle mass.

So, just how long should a bodybuilder rest? I believe thirty to ninety seconds is perfect, and I would never recommend resting longer than two minutes. Unless your primary goal is strength.

Keep in mind that that two minute rest would be on a very select few heavy compound movements, such as squats and deadlifts.

Intensity

One of the most crucial factors determining the success or failure of a lifting program is intensity. I’d even go as far as to say that the reason most people don’t achieve or maintain the results they desire from an exercise program is due to a lack of intensity, or a lack of sustained intensity.

You see, if you really want to create mindblowing changes to your body, you must reach and sustain a certain level of intensity throughout the course of your workouts.

This means don’t go hard and focus for twenty minutes, only to get distracted and rest for three minutes straight. Intensity can be increased and maintained via incorporating the methods that I’ve already discussed in this article.

Brief, consistent rest periods are one of the best ways to achieve this. One thing is for sure though, if your workouts are lacking in intensity, you will be lacking in results.

Mind Muscle Connection

Although it is an intangible, the mind muscle connection is one of the most important tools for the advanced bodybuilder. But what exactly is a mind muscle connection?

It’s as simple as it sounds really, the connection between the mind and the muscles. A great mind musle connection will allow an experience bodybuiler to exhaust and even cramp a muscle even without using weight!

If you can’t do this with a certain muscle, you should work on strengthening your mind muscle connection there. Like with most things, there are many different ways to achieve this, but there are a few that aren’t talked about often enough.

One way is by performing isometrics, simply flex a muscle as hard as you can, and hold it for a predetermined amount of time, let’s say ten seconds, then relax. Repeat again for a total of three to four sets.

Also using light weight and concentrating fully, focusing on the contraction, and using isolation movements are good ways to strengthen that all important mind muscle connection.

Once you develop a strong enough mind muscle connection you’ll be able to sculpt a muscle more or less to your will. You’ll be able to focus your mind on a specific part of a muscle, and contract it harder, which will take your physique to the next level.

Conclusion

Bodybuilding at it’s core is truly an art form. Our bodies are the canvas, the weights are our paint brushes. We are all unique and different things will work for each of us, which is why it is important to always keep an open mind.

There are literally infinite aspects to training. It is simple, yet complex. It is art, yet it is also hard work. I encourage you to always learn, expand, and evolve, and your physique will always do the same. I hope this article has served you well. Now go make some gains:) With all my love,

tricep

Adonis

Laugh and Play Your Way To Better Health and Fitness

 

“Assuredly, I say to you, unless you change and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven.” Jesus Christ

children for fmtm 

Remember when you were a child? How often you laughed? How you would play for hours on end without getting tired?

All you wanted to do was play, and you had seemingly limitless energy. Then, somewhere along the way, likely around adolescence, you became aware of your reputation, the opposite sex, how you looked, your grades, college, etc.

You began to play less and less. The older you got, the more responsibilities you had. By the time you entered into adulthood, you rarely played at all, and no longer had that seemingly infinite fountain of energy that you possessed as a child.

You sometimes looked back and thought about how much fun it was to be child, but never could quite figure out what it was that made you more joyful as a youth.

You chalked it up to things like, I had so much fun as a kid because I didn’t have any responsibilities, and accepted that those days were over.

But did you want them to be? Were you really done playing or did it slowly get lost in the shuffle? As you prioritized things like college, work, cleaning the house, and so on, you were unintentionally left with no time to play.

Most adults’ idea of play is drinking alcohol and partying. I’m in no way criticizing that, however, that isn’t the healthy form of play we’re discussing here.

Most adults have forgotten how to enjoy simply playing. Things like a game of kickball or climbing a tree no longer seem to hold the same excitement they once did, but what are we missing out on by playing less, or not at all?

As usual, I’m glad you asked. We are missing out on unique exercises, which allow us to burn calories, and move our bodies in ways that we typically don’t.

This encourages flexibility in areas that we may otherwise become rigid in. It also brings one into the present moment, and stimulates the mental faculties.

It brings one back to the simple joys in life, absent of electronics, etc. It encourages bonding with other people since usually (though not always) more than one person are required to play.

Another benefit, and I believe this is the greatest, is that it encourages inner peace, and a light heartedness. We have been taught that play is for children, and that it’s not as important as work, but on the contrary, it’s vital for our overall sense of well-being.

Not only that, once we rewire our brains to enjoy it, it becomes fun. The interesting thing is that there is technically no specific activity that constitutes play. Playing is a state of mind. Y

ou can do anything playfully. You can have an uncomfortable conversation playfully, you can work playfully. Some people do this naturally, and some have to make a conscious effort.

It is a vital skill that facilitates an enjoyment of life. When someone is playful and lighthearted they are a pleasure to be around, because they are happy and free from anxiety.

This is because their energy is expressed, rather than repressed. On the other hand, when we lack this basic skill we can become rigid and uptight.

It’s a trip right? We have been taught that playing is a waste of time, and a luxury only afforded to children. So where do we start?

It’s as simple as it sounds, but if you haven’t done much playing in several months or years and are unsure of what you’d enjoy, I recommend giving yourself a sampler platter.

Pick a day and time, maybe on the weekend, that works for you and start trying activities that seem like fun. Also, think back to when you were a child. What did you like to do?

Where did you like to go? What made you happy? You can start there. Also, and this may be even more beneficial, inject some fun into your daily activities.

Again, play is a mental attitude, so approach things like work or cleaning with a playful attitude.

Have some fun with your coworkers in a way that’s appropriate for your work environment, turn on your favorite playlist while you clean the house, smile for no reason while driving, make silly faces at yourself in the bathroom mirror.

All of these things will help to lighten and loosen you up, and over time they will affect all areas of your life in a wonderful way.

This may all sound like common sense but remember, the most profound things are often the simplest things. I find that in today’s fast paced world where the average person has so much, often we forget to do the simple things, and those are often the things that bring us the most joy and peace.

So the next time someone tells you to grow up or stop acting childish, say thanks but no thanks. With all my love,

me b&w 

 

Adonis