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Bringing you the latest in health and fitness


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Muscle Up With Creatine


Remove limits to muscle growth.

If there is one supplement that you use consistently, it should be creatine. Study after study confirms that it works to increase muscle size, strength, power and endurance. New research continues to pile in which shows it has many benefits.

Researchers from the Arak University (Iran) reported in a 2010 issue of the Molecular and Cellular Endocrinology that subjects taking creatine while on a eight-week weight lifting program had significantly lower myostatin levels than those taking a placebo. Myostatin is a protein that limits muscle growth. The Iranian researchers concluded that since myostatin levels were lower in the subjects taking creatine, one way that creatine may work to increase muscle size and strength is by reducing myostatin levels. That, in turn would reduce the limitation that this protein places on the muscle growth.

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Having Trouble With Shoulder Growth and Getting Them Sore? Here Is An Effective Technique For Training Delts


Shoulder muscles

The delts are more like the endurance muscles you see with calves or forearms and they can handle more reps. Some athletes who are really gifted can do heavy barbell or dumbbell presses and just grow easily. If you have problems gaining size try giant sets (where you combine 4-5 exercises and complete them consecutively with no rest between). It is really intense and you will feel a killer pump on your shoulders. Do a giant set with dumbbell lateral raises, dumbbell shoulder presses, upright rows and bent-over lateral raises for 10 reps each exercise, or 40 reps to total. If your shoulders are not responding from heavy training, this type of advanced supersetting will really work.


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Missing Meals


Whether you cook each night or once per week, have all your meals ready in advance so you can pack a coolbox and head off for your daily journey. You must never miss meals, because you body needs a constant supply of nutrients to support recovery and growth. Generally, you need 1.5 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight and for carbohydrates you should start between 2 and 2.5 grams, but over a period of time this can be increased to 4g, depending on your fat gain and how you respond to the increase in your calories. Also ensure you are drinking adequate amounts of water. Have these between meals, and not too much during as it can decrease hunger, causing you to eat less.


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I have been doing straight-sets training for a while now and I think my body is getting used to it. How do I know if I’m ready to start using more advanced techniques?


This all depends on how long you have been training for. Basically, advanced techniques like forced reps or drop sets can be used about 3 months after you have started training because that is when you typically hit a plateau. So if you feel like you need something changed, if strength or muscle gains have come to a halt, then advanced techniques may be good for you to try. Forced reps, where you have a training partner help you through a few additional reps after hitting initial failure, are a good place to start as long as you do not overdo them.


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One-Arm Low (Or High) Cable Crossover


One-Arm Cable Crossover

Targets:
Pecs, with emphasis on the upper and middle chest fibres.

Best In Workout:
You can use this move as a pre-exhaust exercise preceding the compound presses necessary for mass, or you can put this last in your workout to flush and pump the muscle full of water, blood and nutrients.

Sets & Reps:
Perform 3-4 sets with 15-20 reps

D-Handle:
Grasp a D-handle attached to the low cable and place your non-working hand on the same-side hip. Similar to the single-arm overhead press, using only one side of the body will help engage and recruit more stabiliser activity than you typically experience. As your core fatigues, you can hold the opposite handle in the non-working hand, helping you anchor and balance yourself.

Stance:
Place your feet slightly wider than shoulder-width apart and tighten your abs. Standing halfway between the two low cables with a wide stance provides a stable foundation.

Slight Bend:
Stand up straight and keep your working arm slightly bent. You should work to keep that slight bend in your elbow fixed throughout the entire set. Doing so will help focus the attention on the chest fibres. If you open and close the bend in your arm, you will lessen the effectiveness and shift some of the focus off the chest and onto your arm.

Range Of Motion:
Pull the handle up and across your body. Bring the handle all the way across so that at the end of the range of motion, the handle is in front if the opposite shoulder. During the typical cable crossover, the handles meet in front of your chest or face, but working one side at a time allows you to cross your body, engaging more pec fibres for a longer ROM before returning to the start position and repeating.