The Muscle Couple has been meaning to drop this series of articles (1-5) for a couple of months now.
Between working 3 jobs, competing for the Muscle Mania Fitness Competition, the stress of dieting and kcal restriction, and chasing Muscle B’s through the house and neighborhood, it ain’t easy for this family to BLOG!
Many of these tips come from careful introspection over the last 20 years. Depending on your individual situation and genetics, you may or may not receive different results. For the most part, these tips will help most anybody.
There is no order to them and many may surprise you as they represent recent findings and learnings.
We are hopeful you can use just a few and apply them to your life with successful results.
- A GREAT personal trainer or training partner is essential to developing a world class physique
- TMC up until hiring our first personal trainer Markus Reinhardt would have never said this previously. Jay was a CPT through ACE and also a CSCS through the National Strength and Condition Association in the mid to late 90′s. You absolutely must have somebody to challenge you each and every workout. Even if it’s a just a workout partner with similar to equal strength who can spot you so you can train with progressive overload principles week to week and workout to workout. Sometimes the challenge is just psychological. There is just no way one person can motivate themselves to the fullest extent of their capabilities(physically and psychologically) each and every time they train. A good lifting partner or trainer will see this as their main goal at every workout.
- Excess protein consumption is a fraud and a myth perpetrated by the supplement companies
- Their main focus is to grow their bottom line and fleece your pockets of your hard earned scrilla. Nobody with one notable exception needs more than .75-1gms of high quality protein per pound of lean muscle mass. The exception being AAS, GH and Thyroid Hormone using athletes. For them, (and yes this is most of the people you see in the muscle magazines) their BMR is so jacked up, they need excess protein to stay in positive nitrogen balance from the excess tissue turnover caused from the drugs they are using. If you aren’t using drugs, save your money and learn to eat clean, solid meals with maybe a protein shake or two thrown in daily for convenience. (for the busy folks who lack the time to eat solid clean meals)
- Less is more when it comes to improving your performance and enhancing your physique
- This tip will never be followed by 95% of the training population due to advertising and cultural norms of “if some is good, more is better”. TMC has only recently learned this after years of over training, over dieting, and over physical stimulation. As hard as it is for us to even admit it, the quality of your training is way more important than the quantity. There are obvious exceptions especially when it comes to endurance training and endurance specific events/competition. But generally speaking, if your goal is to look great naked and perform at the highest level in your chosen athletic endeavor, infrequent, intense, scientifically applied training sessions will provide the best bang for your buck. (This topic deserves it’s own blog, and we’ll have much more on it very soon)
- The single best way to develop your calves to the maximum of your genetic expression is by using your toes in your daily walking gait and in all cardio.
- Calves are incredibly resistant to change. Make sure you always walk on the balls of your feet and when you perform your cardio, make sure to emphasize the front part of your upper foot (the big toe and the next two toes)as your point of emphasis when striking the surface of the pedal, treadmill, elliptical or stair master. This repetition will lead to impressive and muscular calves in no time. You should still train your calves in your regular training routine utilizing a progressive overload model.
- Noticeable abdominals can’t possibly be developed without heavy resistance and progressive overload.
- High rep ab training is the fraud of frauds. You’re actually going backwards with high rep training as its possible to convert the fibers into slower twitch/smoother muscle. If you want a thick, well developed and noticeable ab wall, you must train your abs with resistance each and every time you train them.(remembering to forcibly contract your rectus) And seeing your abs (if you haven’t learned from this site by now) is purely a function of your diet and restricted kcals to burn the fat tissue over top of them.
- There is only one more important component to the success of a bodybuilder than perfectly controlled cadence in every rep of every set.
- Every time TMC walks into the gym, we are saddened to watch the majority of trainees exploding through their sets with poor form and the force of momentum controlling their movements. It’s amazing how fast you can change your appearance and improve the size, tone and strength of your muscle fibers by utilizing a weight you can control in perfect form in both the eccentric and concentric phase of the lift. Slow down, time every rep, (2 second concentric, and 4 second eccentric as basis) and maximally contract your targeted muscle fibers.
- Maximally contracting muscle fibers is the single most important component to the success of a bodybuilder.
- Most people who train with weights have no idea how to maximally enervate the target fibers of the muscle they are training. Through the force of momentum, poor form and incorrect technique, most people execute rep after rep, set after set incorrectly. Imagine the kind of results they’d have if they could learn to properly contract their muscle fibers through good controlled cadence and technique. As we have stated here previously, learning to contract fibers isn’t something you can learn to do by reading a book or observing another person training. You have to learn to do it through practice and it will take time.
- What really matters when dieting for body fat loss is kcal reduction, portion reduction per feeding, and controlling insulin production.
- Confusion is rampant about the correct macronutrient %’s to consume when dieting.So many Diet Authors/Guru’s discuss 40-30-30 or 50-30-20 etc. TMC has learned after much trial and error and years of experimental dieting protocols (Ketogenic, Low Carb, Reduced Carb, Zone Diet, Anabolic Diet, Bodyopus, etc) that only kcal restriction (cycling amounts up and down), small frequent feedings and minimizing and modulating insulin release is what matters. Shockingly, we’ve found we can eat a “carb based diet” and still get shredded. As long as kcals are below maintenance and feedings are regular and small portions (combining protein, clean carbs and some EFA’s), the fat will strip off you.
- Regular and Moderate to HIT Cardiovascular exercise is the key to living a long, healthy life.
- Sure resistance training is crucial for posture, bone density and improving BMR through increased skeletal muscle. But cardio is king when it comes to improving the strength of your lungs, heart and various brain pathways. You need oxygen rich blood flowing through your veins at all times. Nothing will improve this ability better than regular, consistent lifelong cardiovascular training. Most hard core bodybuilder and strength training athletes could dramatically alter their performance and appearance by adding in regular cardio to their regimens.
- Basic principles of nutrition must be understood to build and maintain a high quality physique.
- There are many-many people (hopefully not many readers of this site) who don’t understand the difference between a protein, fat and carbohydrate. Compounding that issue is a lack of understanding of how to best combine all three macronutrients when eating. ie…Many folks don’t understand you should never eat Fat (saturated/trans) with starchy carbs. Why? The body has to preferentially choose which source to burn as fuel and what source to “store”. Often times depending on a host of other factors, this leads to fat deposition. When you also understand starchy carbs and saturated fats are playing havoc with your insulin secretion, you have a messy biochemical situation the body must deal with. Learn what macronutrient combinations are best and you will avoid scenarios where your body is prone to store fat.
Stay tuned for Part 2 sometime soon!