What are the best workouts?
How many days of the week should I lift?
How many sets and repetitions are best?
These are the questions I had when I first started to lift weights.
Check out my Lean Muscle Workout plan here
The two training programs below will get you off to a good start working out in your own home gym, or jump to the Workouts by Personal Trainers.
Included with the Powertec power rack is a brief, to the point training guide. This is how the guide describes muscle strength and development:
The process of strengthening and developing the muscles of the body is very basic.
It involves three factors of equal importance:
Training leads to the breakdown or tearing of muscle tissue, which occurs when working the muscle against resistance.
Nutrition is the proper balance of food that provides energy to train and build the muscle.
Rest is the time needed between workouts to allow the muscle tissue ample time to recover, repair and rebuild back stronger.
When I first started looking for a beginning weight lifting routine, most guides recommended doing a full body workout three times a week. Which is fine, but this takes at least an hour to one and a half hours, something I didn't have considering my workouts usually started at five a.m. and I needed to finish and leave for work.
The powertec training guide stressed brief, intense training for only 15-20 minutes per workout, two workouts per week. And since your only weight lifting for two days a week, this will keep you enthused and excited for the next training session.
The fey factor for this program is intensity. This simply means pushing the muscle to its maximum limit by reaching a point where you no longer can perform another repetition in strict form.
The workouts should be spaced a minimum of 3 to 4 days apart (allowing the muscles to recover, repair and rebuild).
Training the same muscle group any sooner will result in over training, which is not good for muscle growth.
Four or five exercises are performed each session, and you should do one general warm up set of twenty repetitions prior to the start of the first exercise. Example: if your first exercise is the bench press, you're warm up, twenty rep set should be with a weight at least 30% less.
You'll only perform one set of each exercise, and only 6 to 12 repetitions.
Now here's the key:
Each repetition is performed in a strict manner with perfect form, utilizing a three second positive or lifting of the weight, a one second hold or squeeze at the top of the movement, and a slow four second negative or lowering of the weight. Each rep should take 8 seconds.
Once you're able to complete 12 repetitions in perfect form, increase the resistance for this exercise the next session. If during an exercise you feel you can do more than 12 repetitions, simply remove approximately 30% of the weight and immediately do a few more repetitions until failure, but do not perform a second set.
You can increase the intensity of this program by lowering the resting time between exercises.
Day One (Chest, Triceps, Deltoids, Abdominals)
3-4 day rest
Day Two (Legs, Back, Biceps)
Since your only working out two days a week, on the off days you can do cardio, or do additional work on your calves and abdominals.
Both of these muscle groups can be worked multiple times per week, with higher repetitions.
Powertec's training guide also provides additional intermediate and advanced routines as well.
If you don't know anything about weight training, rest and nutrition, the absolutely best place to start is a book by Bill Phillips, body for life. His program gives you an overall picture of training, nutrition and basically a new way of life.
You can read my review of his program here, but I'll give you just a glimpse of just the weight training program taken directly from his book:
The best thing about this program is that the weight lifting portion can be done only with dumbbells and a bench, perfect for the home gym bodybuilder with limited equipment choices.
On this page (review coming soon) you can get more information on the Body for Life program.
Here are some examples of the results you can see with Bill's twelve week program.
BODY FOR LIFE IS HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!
If you noticed, both of the beginning programs stress strict form, with a slow and controlled repetition of either four or eight seconds.
Learn and perform proper form before going on to the intermediate and advanced routines.
Love Sexy Abs by Sebastian Turrichi
LoveSexyAbs is a unique, high quality interactive video course designed to achieve real, sustainable and lasting results for it's users.
Covering everything from workouts to planning a diet that suits each individual user, it's a one product solution to getting into and staying in shape.
The fitness niche has been crying out for a product like this, one that goes beyond a mere ebook and gives it's users the experience of having a personal trainer without any of the cost of hiring one.
With 45 videos built in to the book, so the user can see the exercises performed directly under each workout!
Find out more about the LoveSexyAbs interactive video course HERE
As the title suggests, "No Nonsense" gets right down to it. It is not just another e-book with a bunch of boring pages that you won't even finish reading. It's actually the opposite!
It is direct and to the point, but is packed with the most comprehensive system I've ever seen! It will empower you with every tool required to short-cut your success to insane muscle gain!
No fluff. No B.S. No hype! It's designed for one thing and one thing only... to show you the skinny guy the most direct and uncomplicated methods to building more muscle mass and gaining weight. Quickly and easily.
Trust me, no one had worse genetics (for building muscle) than Vince, a long-distance runner who ran 80-120 km a week for 10 years...so if you think you have bad genetics – throw that excuse out the window!
Whether you are an aspiring bodybuilder, fitness model, competitive athlete or just want to look good in a bathing suit – this system has been proven to work time and time again!
Read my review of the No Nonsense Muscle Building program or go directly to the No Nonsense Muscle Building website.
Earning the name "Muscle Nerd" for his driving need to research cutting edge advances in what it REALLY takes to build muscle and burn fat, he has created some of the most sought after mass-building and fat-burning programs on the internet:
Combat The Fat: Fat shredding ebook with the military's top fat burning secrets for men and women.
Advanced Mass Building: Total "Mass Building" for the muscle-seeking audience!
Optimum Anabolics: A step-by-step, all natural guide to advanced "mass building" through " hormone triggering". (No steroids!)
Homemade Supplement Secrets: Make your own all-natural sports supplement formulas for every fitness goal! This is one of the best ebooks I have ever bought...you really get your money's worth. Read my review of the Homemade Supplement Secrets ebook.
Muscle Specialization Secrets: How to FORCE any muscle to GROW!
Hardgainer Project X: The ultimate "mass builder" designed SPECIFICALLY for the "ectomorph" body type! GREAT before & after's of REAL skinny guy successes!
What I like about Mike's program is that it cuts right through all of the crap, and gives you the straight honest answers about exactly what is needed to get a truly lean and healthy body and keep that for the rest of your life (and of course get those six pack abs that everybody wants!).
Testimonial: "Before I started your program, I was running regularly and working out sometimes, but I was still getting fatter.... and fatter. I didn't really notice it until my friend took a photo of me at the beach. I was horrified!!!! I knew I had to do something about it, but I couldn't move the fat.
Everything changed when I started your truth about abs program. In the 6 months I've been on the program, I've lost 25.4 kg and gone from 30% body fat down to 11% body fat." Leith Carnie, Australia
Burn the fat feed the muscle by Tom Venuto (BFFM) is a 337 page fat burning success manual in downloadable e-book format, jam-packed cover to cover with all the fat loss methods previously known by only a small handful of the worlds best fitness models and bodybuilders. This program contains all the information you'll ever need to help you melt away body fat permanently without muscle loss and without using drugs or unnecessary supplements.
Tom has been bodybuilding for 24 years and competing for 18 years. He's been involved in the fitness industry as a personal trainer, health club manager, nutritionist, motivation coach and freelance writer for nearly 20 years. Bodybuilding and fitness is his life - it's all he’s ever done.
Tom is a "lifetime natural" bodybuilder. "Natural" means he's never used steroids or any other banned or illegal physique enhancing drugs - ever! You can achieve AMAZING results on this program without ever taking drugs - and he's living proof!
BFFM is one of the top-selling weight loss ebooks and a must-read for anyone who wants to lose fat. Keep this around as a constant reference guide.
Here's another review of the BFFM system:
Nick Nilsson 28 Days to Maximum Mass workoutNick Nilsson is Vice-President of the online personal training company BetterU, Inc. He has a degree in Physical Education and Psychology and has been inventing new training techniques for more than 17 years.
Nick is the author of a number of bodybuilding eBooks including "Muscle Explosion - 28 Days to Maximum Mass," "Metabolic Surge - Rapid Fat Loss," "The Best Exercises You've Never Heard Of," "Gluteus to the Maximus - Build a Bigger Butt NOW!" and "The Best Abdominal Exercises You've Never Heard Of" all available here.
You may have heard of him before, because he's been online for over a decade! Since 1999 he has helped literally thousands of aspiring bodybuilders and muscle building enthusiasts from all over the world with absolutely astonishing results.
Lee Hayward is a competitive bodybuilder, powerlifter, and muscle building coach who is committed to helping aspiring bodybuilders and fitness enthusiasts gain muscle, burn body fat, and develop a strong muscular body. Lee is also the author of the Blast Your Bench program, which teaches you how to increase your max bench press by as much as 50 pounds in as little as 3 weeks, regardless of your previous weight training experience.
The 21-Day Fast Mass Building System tackles these draw backs of traditional "Bulking" and "Cutting" programs head on. This program uses a synergistic approach where you actually work with your body’s natural hormonal systems to create the optimal lean muscle-building environment, without getting fat in the process.
That is the entire basis for the 21-Day Fast Mass Building System. Lee and Vince have broken down the entire bodybuilding contest preparation process of pre-contest dieting and off-season mass building and condensed it into a short, but effective 21-day rapid results cycle!
Rusty Moore's Visual Impact Muscle Building
So How do the guys in Hollywood like Taylor Lautner, Cam Gigandet, Brad Pitt, Will Smith, Hugh Jackman etc. get that ultra-lean look...where it appears as if their skin is shrink wrapped around their muscles?
Rusty's quote: "Tens of thousands of people have tested my methods with phenomenal results (when it comes to getting lean). It has been very rewarding reading all the positive testimonials from both men and women. ...but I mainly just focused on losing body fat and increasing muscle density without increasing muscle size."
Don't fall for the myth that it takes "free weights" to gain muscle and get ripped!
I like using free weights, but I am not so narrow minded to believe that this is the only route to a great physique. There have been countless examples of people getting in outstanding shape with a variety of different methods of resistance. Here are a few...
Elliott Hulse and Mike Westerdal's Lean Hybrid Muscle program
One of the things that really set Lean Hybrid Muscle apart from countless other "get fit" books, programs and routines I've seen is that it is designed to work with our bodies' natural systems, not against them.
That in itself is the key difference between LHM and the rest. It also allows you to develop a personalized program that is unique to your body's particular needs. Others don't do that. They make the assumption that because what they did worked for them, it will work for anybody else who does the same thing. The problem is that this just isn't true. Read more
Ben Pakulski's Mass Proportions workout system
Ben came up with MI40 Mass Proportions system that helped him become one of the top 15 ranked pro bodybuilders in the world. The same system that has landed him on dozens of magazine covers such as Muscular Development, Flex, MuscleMag and many more...
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