When you’re working hard in the gym, you expect results. If you’re not seeing the changes you want, be sure to check out pro natural bodybuilder, Victor Egonu’s top 5 tips to get fitter.
|1.Bank Your Hard Work With USPlabs Cutting-Edge Supplements
I know, I know; you've remained loyal to your diet, been training extremely hard, haven’t missed a cardio session and still haven’t seen any significant progress. Don’t fret, all hope is not lost. You now have “trump cards.” I’m referring to USPlabs’ top of the line supplements that can help you break through those plateaus and get back on track. Over the past year, my goal was to add lean muscle mass while keeping body fat at bay. Of course I broke this long-term goal into a few short term goals, but by using USPlabs products, I was able to exceed my expectations at each goal deadline. Occasionally, I’ll swap in other products depending on the phase of my periodization as all USPlabs products have something to offer. So make a goal, get your diet and training right, and create a stack to help you get Jack3d! Below I’ve listed the mainstay of my supplement regimen below.My Goal: Gain lean muscle
2. Try Something New Are you tired of going to the gym on a Monday only to have the bench press or elliptical taken week after week? Me too! So instead of waiting for the bench, go to the rack and squat. Instead of waiting on a highly demanded cardio machine, go outside for a run. I haven’t done the same old routine from when I started bodybuilding and neither should you. On top of switching it up, learning to improvise is also a great skill. If the squat rack is also taken, start your leg workout with some walking lunges. Not enough room? Do them jumping in place. By using your imagination, there’s always a way to make your workout effective. In fact, if it wasn’t for that bench being taken, I might not have tried certain exercises, learned what I know, or even be where I am today.
3. Functionality Over Specificity Can you run a mile in under 10 min, do 30 bodyweight squats, 10 push-ups? How about 5 pull-ups? Yes? No? Maybe? If so, great, keep on working hard and improving. If not, you need to step away from the elliptical, hop off the leg press, get up from the bench, and no more lat pull-downs until you can. We all need to improve our innate functional abilities before excelling at man-made modalities. This means that you should start your workout routines with basic functional movements such as squats, push-ups, pull-ups and dead lifts first and then do more refined exercises afterwards. By doing this, you will be able to build, tighten and tone more muscle and burn fat faster. So next time you’re in the gym and you see that guy doing curls in front of the mirror, ask him point blank… ‘Bro, do you even SQUAT?’
4. My Favorite Abs Workout For a Firmer Midsection
I hate training abs. Seriously, I do. Why? Because if done correctly, it should hurt badly. So I’m confused as to how some people can spend 30min or more doing 500+ crunches, still don’t feel any difference in their abdominals, and yet they wouldn’t spend that same amount of time doing squats, dead lifts or something more beneficial regarding core work. I rarely do more than 3-4 sets of 15-30reps for any abs exercise. The abs are muscles too and although you don’t need a significant amount of weight over that of your own bodyweight, increasing the intensity via exercise, resistance or angle might just be all you need to take your abs from being “eh” to “whoa”. Below I’ve listed 2 of my favorite abs routines that I’ve reaped great results from. Do note however, you won’t be able to fully see your abs until you have your diet and cardio down pat and lower body fat levels.
All you need is a decline bench that you can lock your legs under.
I. Decline Roman Chair Sit-ups // 3 sets of 15 reps @ Bodyweight (BW)
Lower down slowly (2sec) and crunch and squeeze abs hard at the top (1sec).
II. Incline Reverse Leg Raises // 3 sets of 15 reps @ Bodyweight (BW)
Contract your hips off the bench when raising legs towards chest. Lower down slowly (2 sec).
III. Decline Russian Twists // 3 sets of 15 reps per side @ Bodyweight (BW)
Keep your head neutral and looking forward. Keep arms locked out straight and at shoulder level the whole time. Twist slowly side to side. (1sec from middle to side).
I. Hanging Leg/Knee raises // 3 sets of 15 reps @ Bodyweight (BW)
Lift legs to be parallel with the ground. Lower legs slowly (1sec), keeping lower back tight to prevent excessive swinging and momentum.
II. Plank // 3 sets of 30sec to a 1min @ BW or additional weight
Keep core tight to prevent extra pressure on shoulders. If BW is too easy, have someone add a weight plate to your lower back for added intensity.
III. V-sit-ups // 3 sets of 10-12 reps @ Bodyweight (BW)
Keep head, hands and heels above the ground at all times to put additional tension on the abs for added intensity. Get a strong contraction at the top.
5. A New Twist On R & R Are you constantly wondering why you are so tired, day after day and you’ve already ruled out a lack of sleep? Well, maybe it’s in your head. No I’m not saying you’re making it up, when I say in your head I’m referring to your CNS or Central Nervous System. Regardless if your goal is to gain muscle, lose fat or improve athletic performance; each time you work out you stress your CNS which is basically the “headquarters” for everything you do. The more intense the workout, the more stress on the CNS, the more tired you feel. When you feel extremely sluggish that’s the body’s way of telling you to dial it back a bit and that it may be time for a little break. I know that no one likes to take a break when they’re in the middle of their training program however, if you don’t it could back fire, and you could lose progress. I actually input “Off-Weeks” into my training periodization to force myself to take time off, although I’ll take time off sooner if necessary. By giving your body rest you will improve not only physically but also mentally, allowing your motivation to sky rocket so you can train hard again. So the next time you have one of these spells of lackluster performance, take the day off, de-load your training intensity, take a nap or if really severe take the week off and go on vacation. After all if you’ve been training hard enough all along, your gains aren’t going anywhere!
Disclaimer The information provided in this article, as well as this web-site blog is intended for informational and educational purposes only and should not be interpreted as medical advice for any condition. Always consult a qualified medical professional before beginning any nutritional program or exercise program. By reading this disclaimer, you hereby agree and understand that the information provided in this column is not medical advice and relying upon it shall be done at your sole risk.