Muscle failure is the point where a repetition fails due to inadequate muscle strength. While the "training to failure" philosophy is under debate in the fitness industry (various reasons), going to failure is essential for generating muscle growth. When muscles are pushed to failure (and beyond) the body produces more critical anabolic hormone (GH), testosterone and insulin - like growth factor-1. The further you are able to take the set past failure, the higher you can increase levels of these natural muscle-building hormones and the further you can push muscle growth.
When you see the word "slaying" it usually refers to a medieval
knight attempting to kill a dragon or some kind of mythical creature
which is why the word "slaying" was selected for the way you should
attack your shoulder sessions, like they are a dragon or a mythical
creature that you are trying to kill. When training shoulders, each
session should be INTENSE and PRECISE! The shoulders are a challenging
muscle group to train due to the fact that they are used constantly,
daily which makes them harder to stimulate since they have adapted to a
constant "workload". The shoulders also allow for better "spot specific"
muscle stimulation than just about ANY other muscle group.
A shoulder training session will be most effective if you and/or
your trainer understand your specific goals but the MOST important part
of shoulder training is understanding the muscles of the shoulder,
without this understanding you will not be able to enhance the
performance or appearance of the shoulders. The shoulders (deltoids) are
divided into 3 sections: anterior deltoids (front), middle deltoids
(side) and posterior deltoids (back, *usually weakest). When a training
program for shoulders is designed, the shoulder muscle breakdown should
be a major contributing factor to the exercise order and rep range.
When designing your training program for shoulders, exercises that
focus on the posterior deltoids (back) should be placed after your
primary pressing exercise/ exercises (that's generally speaking, unless
some sort of pre-exhaust, muscular imbalance or other issue is being
addressed). The posterior deltoids (back) are usually the weakest muscle
group in the shoulders, so you should attack them early in your session
before fatigue sits in and while energy levels are high. Once the
posterior deltoids (back) can't take anymore abuse, your session should
then focus on the middle deltoids (side) which should be slightly
stronger than the posterior deltoids (back), especially in beginners.
Middle deltoids (side) focus also makes the shoulders wider and that
makes the waist look smaller, giving a lifter that upper body "V" look.
The anterior deltoids (front) should have the least amount of required
work, this section of the shoulder gets a lot of work from chest presses
and any movement involving the arm out in front of the body. When
training this section of the shoulder don't go crazy, if your shoulder
training is too close to your chest training which isn't suggested but
is a different topic for a different day.
This article is to assist any fitness enthusiast, lifter, trainer
or weekend warrior with their shoulder training. If you have a trainer
and he/she doesn't have your shoulder training in this order ask why
(this isn't the only way to train shoulders) and if there isn't a
sensible explanation you may want to look at getting another trainer or
doing it on your own. Stay tuned to GET H.I.T. and keep training and you
can accomplish ALL your fitness goals.
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As a trainer, I hear it all the time, "I've been trying for years, benching 3 to 4 times a week, but my chest WILL NOT grow and I can't get any stronger." I smile and say "Maybe you should change your routine, what exercises does you routines consist of?" I have asked this question to hundreds of lifters and 99 percent of the time I get the following routine (or something extremely close):
FLAT BENCH BARBELL PRESS - 5 SETS of 5-10 REPS
INCLINE BENCH BARBELL PRESS - 4 SETS of 8-12 REPS
DECLINE BENCH BARBELL PRESS - 3 SETS of 12-15 REPS
CABLE CROSSOVER - 3 SETS of 15 REPS
If your chest sessions are similar to this (don't think if you are using dumbbells it is any different, if it is performed in this same order) you are cheating your chest and not getting the maximum results. Generic sessions are a waste of time unless your goal is overall health. EVERY plan whether it is nutrition, supplement or training should be designed for your specific goal and by a professional with knowledge of how to help you reach your goal. That being stated I won't write any general sessions out but I will give tips for building a GREAT chest.
When attacking the chest you want to train your weak areas, while you are the strongest which is at the beginning of your session. MOST lifters weak areas are the upper and outer chest, so those areas should be attacked early, heavy and hard. Moving on to the next area which is the middle of the chest, as with ALL areas the type of resistance should vary, a lifter should use barbells, chains, dumbbells, machines, medicine balls and resistance bands this allows for each and every muscle fiber to be hit. Next the lower chest, which is the strongest area of the chest in most lifters but most don't realize it because it is placed at the end of the session. Usually lifters attack the lower chest with decline presses or dips but there are numerous other ways to target this area. I suggest you hire an experienced trainer to help with that if your are a "physique junkie."
As far as CABLE CROSSOVERs and FLYEs go, I recommend them based on the lifters "look" and goal. A lifter, physique junkie or bodybuilder can use the above mentioned exercises to enhance their "tie in".
Keep training that chest hard, make sure you get adequate rest, keep your caloric and supplementation intake on point and stay tuned to GET H.I.T. Fitness
GET H.I.T. Fitness
"We Go Hard!!!"
Every time they enter the gym they maintain inner dialogue. They are aware of what the routine should consist of, what exercises and what order they should perform them in. More specifically and more importantly they are forced to know when to stop... when to stop adding weight and when to stop the reps. Weight and reps should be EASY, you lift the heaviest weight for the most reps you possibly can and then you stop. However most enthusiast and trainers really plan this out. They go into a session with a plan to do so many exercises, so many reps, so many sets, a predetermined rest time...yada yada yada. They all imagine this is the recipe for breaking down barriers, making progress. That's what drives them.
GET H.I.T. and what if the next time you walk in the gym, you say "F*CK IT", and got rid of all structure in your session. No more counting reps, sets, weight or rest periods. If it's chest day, is it a crime to do 10 sets of incline barbell presses and then get your cardio in or go home? Or maybe you want to do 7 exercises to hit chest, a superset here, drop set there or maybe a giant set or two. Just do whatever the F*CK you want to. (Assuming you are a freaking juggernaut and you know you will go ALL OUT!!!)
I think most of you a scared! I think you need someone to tell you what to do and instruct you on how you should feel when you are doing it. You take comfort in someone saying do X, Y and Z. To sum it all up, you don't have the balls to trust yourself. If you want to stand half a chance in this game, I suggest you grow a pair and have faith in yourself! How many times have you done something because someone else did? Why do you assume that someone else knows better than you?
Have you ever stopped your training just because prior to, you said "I'm doing 4 sets" even though you knew you could do more? I see guys all the time stop at 12, knowing they can get 14, why do that? Try not going into a session with EVERYTHING predetermined, try having NO LIMIT to your reps, sets, weights or rest periods, let your session dictate these viarables for you, if you can do another rep, YOU BETTER DO IT!
My final question to you is this: How can you ever achieve sh*t when you've already determined from the start what you are not going to do? Know your limitations? To even consider ANY is already 2 strikes against you. You can't expect to get further than anyone else when you set limitations on yourself. BECOME LIMITLESS!
GET H.I.T. Fitness
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WAKE UP! Stop dreaming about the body you want or wish you could have and start building it! These are 6 of the key Get H.I.T. steps to successful goal setting.
When it comes to motivation, not everyone is as fortunate as the H.I.T. Squad to have Mr. Get H.I.T. (Me) screaming in their ear. Fortunately for you I am going to give you a few (6 to be exact) tips to staying motivated, focused, dedicated and driven to accomplish ALL of your fitness goals. I am well aware that you live in the normal world, with normal problem and normal issues and I can't be there with you every step of the way to hold your hand and tell you things are going to be OK and everyone has problems, first off I AM GOING TO TELL YOU MAN UP, EVERYONE HAS ISSUES THEY ARE DEALING WITH, KEEP IT MOVING AND WE HAVE WORK TO DO, PANSY! The following six-step strategy will give you at least a puncher's chance in you fight with fitness.
1.) Decide what you want to accomplish long term, don't just remember it, WRITE IT DOWN!
Comparing this step to trying to get from point A to B without a map may not resonate with most men "Directions? I don't need no stinkin' directions!" but even the most hardheaded would have to admit that you at least need to know your destination in order to even attempt getting there. What is it that you want EXACTLY? To be 200 pounds with under 5% body fat? Complete a marathon? 20" arms? Think about it carefully once you have your goal, write it down along with the amount of time it will take to accomplish it (Make sure the amount of time is reasonable). Place the written goal on a place you will see it and read it often, make copies if you need to.
2.) Break the long term goal down into smaller goals.
Now that you know your long term goal, break it into smaller measurable and attainable goals. Make sure each accomplishment brings you closer to your long term goal. The main thing here is make sure you keep your objectives achievable.
3.) Let Your Goals Be Known, Announce Them.
It is very easy to give up on a goal if you are the only one that knows about it. To put pressure on yourself, tell your friends and family about your ambitions. Once they are made aware you will be driven not to publicly fail in their eyes.
4.) Post Reminders, Visual Ones.
On your refrigerator or another place you will see often, place a photo of the physique you ultimately want to build. Beside that photo place a current photo of yourself and update it every 2 to 4 weeks. This is probably going to be HARSH reality, but don't get down for most guys this should be a photo out of Men's Health ( for girls Women's Health) not a photo out of FLEX magazine.
5.) Find A Training Partner
It's not always possible, but if you can find someone with similar goals who will work out with you, you stand a much better chance of reaching the finish line. Knowing that someone is counting on you, is waiting at the gym for you in those early morning hours when you're tempted to hit the snooze and roll over will drive you to get up and go train.
6.) Review Your Progress
So many people set a goal, and then let it slowly slide out of mind as the daily rigors of life push it into oblivion. That's why the steps outlined here ask that you place the written goal in areas of prominence. "Out of sight, out of mind" may be a tired cliche, but it has a firm basis in reality. Your desire and determination will sometimes wane. Constantly reading your goal and seeing a photo of yourself next to your "ideal" physique will help keep you focused.
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Diet and 3,500
Over the past few years, so much emphasis has been placed on aerobic exercise. Recent scientific evidence has shown that strength training is extremely essential to overall health.
Obtaining strong muscles doesn't necessarily mean "large muscles", what it does mean is that your muscles are more energy efficient and you will have a better protected bone structure. Still, many people (especially females) stay away from strength building because they fear they may get "too big" or "muscle bound" (although no one has ever accidentally gained TOO MUCH MUSCLE). Training 3 to 4 days a week and taking in a "regular" amount of calories WILL NOT make you look like a bodybuilder (I DON'T CARE HOW HARD YOU TRAIN), I promise. Strength training WILL make overweight people smaller. There will be some increase in muscle size, but there will be a MAJOR decrease in body fat.
Strength training for health and quality of life purposes is TOTALLY different from bodybuilding. Bodybuilders are in the gym more often than you can imagine, rest and eat more than you could dream of and have specific goals and weaknesses in mind when they train to accomplish a very specific look. Whereas your basic fitness-oriented lifters can gain amazing results 3 times a week on a pretty moderate program.
Body Composition Changes with Age
Muscles allow us to perform daily activities with ease such as walking or even lifting bags to take trash out. Research has shown that we lose muscle over the years and the main reason is because as we get older, we use our muscles less. At the age of 20, the average woman has 23% body fat, the average man has 18% body fat. At the age of 30, those numbers are up to 30% (women) and 25% (men). By the time 70 rolls around, body fat percentages are up to 54% (women) and 48% (men). When these changes occur and individual is left feeling sluggish, less attractive, and also are very unhealthy.
Recently, strength training has become an essential component of preventative medicine. All research has shown that strength training is extremely effective in reducing many age related diseases such as heart disease, diabetes and osteoporosis. Aerobic activity won't stop the muscle loss that occurs with age. Without strength training it is nearly impossible to control muscle loss. The amount of lean muscle mass an individual has is DIRECTLY related to how fast or slow their metabolism is. Simply put, people with more muscle burn more calories and can therefore eat more than people with less muscle mass and not gain weight.
Without increasing the metabolism, losing weight can be VERY frustrating and often times impossible. Lately, since so much emphasis has been placed on strength training there are more user friendly gyms. Personal training is available at affordable rates (hint, hint). Since so many people are catching on to the benefits of strength training, there are a variety of people in health clubs today.
Strength training is no longer just for "muscle heads". Anyone, of any age, with concern for staying lean, active and healthy, is well advised to jump into a gym (or anywhere) and do strength training on a regular basis.
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One of my clients asked me the other day after seeing me workout, "Are Wide-Grip or Close-Grip Upright Rows better?" I told him, that it depends (Personally I prefer wide-grip upright rows). Since I'm not your trainer I am going to state the benefits of each and let you decide.
Wide-Grip Upright Row
Emphasis on the middle deltoids
R.O.M (Range Of Motion) is slightly less when using wide-grip
The amount of weight that can be used when performing wide-grip is slightly less
Rotator cuff injuries can be prevented
Can feel extremely awkward, especially if form is incorrect
Close-Grip Upright Row
Emphasis on anterior (front) deltoids and trapezius (traps)
R.O.M (Range Of Motion) is greater when compared to Wide-Grip Upright Row
The amount of weight that can be used when performing close-grip is higher
Impingement of the rotator cuff can occur
The exercise when performed correctly feels more natural
When weighing those options that's why Wide-Grip Upright Row was chosen. The Wide-Grip Upright Row hits the muscle more precisely and is also safe. Side Note when using the Close-Grip Upright Row your upper arms can go past parallel to the floor where you risk pinching your rotator cuff tendon and could cause injury.
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On shoulder day I like to warm up by jumping rope for 5- 3 minute rounds with a 30 second break between rounds, jumping rope helps elevate my core temperature and warms my shoulders up. On shoulder day I really like to get my shoulders stretched and warmed up before working them. I stretched my rotater cuff start with extremely light standing shoulder presses increasing about 5 pounds after 10 reps to I am using 30 pound dumbbells (usually start with 15 pound dumbbells) and I also like to do 2 sets of 15 to 20 push ups. Then I start my workout:
Seated Barbell Shoulder Press: 4 Sets of 8-12 Reps (Usually Heavy, Relative)
Seated Dumbbell Shoulder Press: 3 Sets of 15 Reps
Bent - Over Lateral Dumbbell Raise: 4 Sets of 12 Reps (Rear Delts Are Usually Weakest So I Hit Them First After Pressing Movements)
Standing Cable Lateral Raise: 4 Sets of 12 Reps ( Like The Constant Tension That Cables Provide)
Standing Dumbbell Front Raise : 4 Sets of 10 Reps
Standing Barbell Upright Row : 3 Sets of 12 Reps
Seated Dumbbell Shrug : 4 Sets of 15 Reps
This is a really basic shoulder routine, throw it in your training routine sometime, stayed tuned for more workouts from GET H.I.T. Fitness.
GET H.I.T. Fitness
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Alot of you guys focus on "mirror muscles" or the muscles you develop from pushing movements such as bench presses or shoulder presses. If you really want to have a nice, well rounded physique you have to do workouts focused on pulling motions that target the back. The workout below is an advanced workout from the GET H.I.T. vault that will give you amazing gains (this is not my personal workout because now I break my back down into 2 different days a latissimus dorsi (lat) day and a rhomboid day) but that will be discussed in the following weeks. This workout is NOT for newbies.
I always make sure I am warmed up, that's usually 10 minutes of moderate running on the treadmill, bike, elliptical or jumping rope.
This workout today will start with:
Pull Up : 4 Sets of 10 to 12 Reps
Behind The Head Pull Up : 2 Sets of 10 to 12 Reps
Side To Side Pull Up : 2 Sets to Failure
Straight-Arm Pulldown : 4 Sets of 8 to 10 Reps
Bent Over Barbell Row : 4 Sets of 8 to 10 Reps
Seated Cable Row : 4 Sets of 12 to 15 Reps
Hyperextension : 4 Sets of 10 Reps
After this workout I make sure I have my client do some intense back stretching such as cat stretch, spinal stretch, child's pose and dancer's stretch. Before the stretching I usually have my client go through an pretty advanced ab routine since they've just done so much back work. Enjoy this workout and stay tuned for more to come.
GET H.I.T. Fitness
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When training chest, many of you guys like to throw the question around "What do you bench?" At GET H.I.T we believe heavy weight benching for 1 rep in your chest routine, is basically meaningless or should rarely be used, only for determining your 1 rep max in order to create a workout routine using 50 to 85 percent of your 1 rep max. At GET H.I.T. we are in the business of building fighters, physiques and functional muscles not bouncing heavy weight around for the purpose of building our ego, the CHEST Workout below is for the purpose of physique building and in this particular workout we will attack most guys weak area, the upper chest. The following workout is for an ADVANCED (with 2 or more years of experience) lifter.
Moderate walking on treadmill for 10 minutes. (Normally I have ADVANCED clients increase incline every minute.)
Stretch rotater cuff (dynamic stretching) and perform 2 sets of 15 push ups.
Incline Bench Dumbbell Press - *15 Reps*, *15 Reps*, 12 Reps, 10 Reps, 8 Reps
Flat Bench Barbell Press - 8 Reps, 8 Reps, 8 Reps, 8 Reps
Machine Incline Bench Press - 15 Reps, 15 Reps, 12 Reps, 12 Reps
Incline Bench Dumbbell Flye - 12 Reps, 12 Reps, 12 Reps
Low Cable Crossover - 12 Reps, 12 Reps, 12 Reps
Rest periods between sets should be 45 to 180 seconds depending on your goals. Usually CHEST is worked with TRICEPS at GET H.I.T. but it all depends on the individuals specific goals. The * above was for moderate sets of warm ups.
Any comments, concerns or questions email mailto:JAY@GETHITFITNESS.COM or call 404-851-7094.
GET H.I.T FITNESS
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Drinks like Gatorade are just sugar water with some minerals added, and unless you train INTENSELY for a long period of time outside in summer heat and humidity, all you need is water. The amount of sugar in Gatorade is massive! A 32-ounce bottle contains 14 grams (1/2 ounce) of sugar per serving. There are four servings per bottle for a total of 56 grams (2 ounces) of sugar. Most people buy the 32-ounce bottle and drink it all before they realize it. Your body CANNOT process that much sugar at once so it gets stored as fat. The new G2 "low" carb version has 5 grams of sugar per serving, or 20 grams per bottle, which is still too much! The only other ingredients in Gatorade (besides sugar) is water, sodium and potassium. Most people get plenty of sodium in their diet and don't train hard enough to need more. Instead of potassium what you probably need is a good magnesium powder if you cramp alot in your feet or calves. Magnesium deficiency can cause all sorts of problems, from angina to constipation, headaches and migranes, insulin restance, PMS, leg cramps, muscle twitches and more. Magnesium also helps the body use calcium. Without magnesium, the build-up of calcium in the blood manifests as arrhythmia, angina, hypertension and migranes.
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Tuna is a generic name for a variety of species of fish. In the U.S., any canned "white" tuna must be albacore, whereas "light" tuna can include skipjack, tongol, bigeye or yellowfin.
Medium cans of tuna used to weigh 6 ounces, but due to economic factors they now weigh 5 ounces. That missing ounce means the macros are different, so read the label of your favorite brand to recalculate your protein intake.
Replace the light mayo in your salad with reduced-fat (2%) Greek yogurt, which is high in protein and lower in fat. To boost the protein even more, mix in a chopped hard boiled egg. Add grated carrots for crunch and scoop the salad stalks for a low-carb snack or lunch.
A 5-ounce can of solid white albacore tuna contains 160 calories, 22 grams of protein and 8 grams of fat. A 5-ounce can of chunk light tuna contains 100 calories, 22 grams of protein and 1 gram of fat.
Most of the fat in albacore tuna is healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Increasing your intake of this type of fat is associated with increased fat-burning and enhanced recovery.