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20 tips

20 Tipps

These 20 tips could change everything

If your efforts in the gym and with your diet aren't giving you the results you want, then it's time to try something different. Optimize your training and diet so that you can achieve your goals.

Unfortunately, most people never achieve the goals they set for their body development. They spend money on gym memberships, workout equipment, nutrition plans and DVDs, but still fail to build muscle and/or get lean.

This is not always due to a lack of discipline. Gyms are full of men and women doing resistance training programs and mile after mile on the treadmill. Most of these people are very health conscious and eat quite well.

Despite this dedication, you don't see a lot of fit, muscular and lean bodies. You see a lot of people who are "in shape," meaning they are not overweight and have built some muscle mass, but their bodies lack the muscle development and level of leanness they desire.

The question that arises in this situation is "What now?" What can you do if you are motivated but don't know what you need to do to get to the next level. Such a general question is difficult to answer, but I will try to give you a few tips that might help you solve this problem.

10 tips that can help you build muscle

1. maximize every set

I don't believe in wasting time in the gym. By maximizing each set, I know I'm maximizing each training session and therefore my muscle building results. Here's what I recommend. Perform as many reps as possible on each set. Stop a set if you feel like you can't do the next repetition or if your form is slipping. By using this approach, you will push your muscles harder and maximize overload by putting more weight on the bar over time.

This may sound like an obvious tip, but very few people train this way. If you want to build as much muscle mass as possible, by far the best thing you can do in the gym is to push yourself to the limit on every set.

2. stop just training and start training with a goal in mind

Many people train, but few train with a goal in mind. What do I mean by that? Let me explain briefly. How many times have you said "I really gave it my all in training today. I sweated like a pig and completely destroyed my body." This is all well and good, but burning calories and punishing your body does not necessarily equate to a good bodybuilding workout.

Building muscle is not about burning calories, sweating or punishing your body. To build muscle you need bodybuilding specific goals. Because progressive overload is the most important thing, I recommend the simple goal of trying to improve by one repetition on each set compared to your last training session. This will allow you to continually push your body harder to become stronger than you are right now and as a result accelerate your muscle building process. Train with the goal of making progress and not with the goal of sweating as much as possible or causing as much pain as possible.

3. understand the 'food chain' of training with weights

Training tools such as descending sets, supersets, rest-pause training, slow negative reps and burns are all well and good, but if you don't increase the weight on the bar over time when using these tools, then your body will adapt and your gains will slow or stall. Using advanced training techniques is perfectly fine, but they can't replace progressive overload. No matter how hard you train, if you don't try to perform more reps per set and use more weight over time, your workouts will still feel "intense" but they will lack the effective mechanisms that produce gains.

4. forget the idea that there is such a thing as a "magic" training program

One of the biggest mistakes I see time and time again is the obsession with finding a magical training system. There is no such thing as a magic training system. Find a proper training plan and stick to it.

Consistency and progressive overload are the real magic. The reality is this: Most exercisers fail not because of programs, but because they don't stay consistent and don't continually try to increase the weight on the bar. The best choice you can make is to find a training system that motivates you to train, stick with that program, and modify it to fit your schedule and needs. Far too often an exerciser tries a program for a few days, doesn't like certain aspects of it and moves on to a new program. If you don't like certain things about a system, change them. Remember that progress and consistency are more important than specific training tools.

5. try this simple 12 set program for the major muscle groups

Not sure how to structure workouts for major muscle groups like chest, back, legs and shoulders? Try this simple 12-set structure:

  • Exercise 1 - Basic exercise, 3 sets
  • Exercise 2 - Basic exercise, 3 sets
  • Exercise 3 - Machine exercise, 3 sets
  • Exercise 4 - Isolation exercise, 3 sets

Here you start with the heaviest and most effective basic exercise such as squats, barbell rows, standing shoulder presses and bench presses. Then you move on to a second basic exercise. This exercise should be of a slightly different nature, such as dumbbell incline bench presses or leg presses. You can end the training session with a machine exercise and an isolation exercise. Here you can use advanced training techniques such as slow negative repetitions or descending sets if you wish.

6. say goodbye to a "minimalist" protein and calorie intake

When it comes to muscle building nutrition, some sources will tell you that you never need to eat more than 150 grams of protein per day or more than 200 to 300 kcal more than your maintenance calorie intake. Well, "never" doesn't work very well if you're not making progress. It's important to try new things and make changes and adjustments if your current eating plan isn't working. If you're pushing yourself hard in the gym, increasing weight on the bar and being consistent, but the gains aren't happening, then it's probably your nutrition plan that's holding you back. Try increasing your calorie intake by an additional 300 kcal per day and increase your protein intake by 30 grams.

These small changes could be just what's needed to accelerate your gains from slow to steady. You have nothing to lose by increasing your food intake on a trial basis for a month. Food is magic for the steroid-free exerciser. It can speed up your recovery and strength gains, which will help you build more muscle in the long run.

If the minimalist way doesn't work, increase your daily calorie and protein intake.

7. use the "one hour" rule

I'm often asked if it's okay to train for longer than an hour. My answer is simple:

If you can't do a good muscle-building workout within an hour, then something is wrong. This is not to say that you can't or shouldn't train for longer than an hour. My point is simple: if after an hour you don't feel like you've achieved what you wanted to achieve, then extra time in the gym probably won't help you either. Focus on quality first. Once you know that each of your workouts is effective, you can analyze where more time in the gym could be beneficial. More is not better if your existing workout is lacking.

8. give rest-pause a try

I'm a big fan of rest-pause training for muscle building. The premise is very simple: you limit rests between sets to a maximum of 20 to 30 seconds and perform as many reps as possible on each set. This approach allows you to really challenge a muscle and retrain it when it's already down. Rest-pause training works better with a higher volume of sets. But don't panic, rest-pause is not the same as high-volume training. If you do 5 sets of rest-pause bench press with only 30 seconds rest between sets, your repetition volume per set will drop dramatically.

So even if you do 5 sets, the total number of reps will be lower. You will also probably only need to perform fewer exercises per training session as rest-pause can be very brutal.

9. stop your half-hearted exercise execution

The two biggest sins you can observe in the average gym are the following:

  1. Bench presses with low reps and assistance from a training partner. You know how these sets go - your training partner performs rows with your weight.
  2. Half squats. Exercisers put too much weight on the bar, go down 10 centimeters and then call this movement a squat. No, these are not squats - and this type of exercise also puts unnecessary strain on your knees.

You are much better off reducing the weight in these exercises and maintaining correct form. It's almost impossible to build quality chest and leg muscles if you don't take squats and bench presses seriously. Drop your ego at the coat check, reduce the weight, learn proper exercise form and go from there.

10. build a solid base from head to toe

Not sure if your training program is viable or if you are training correctly? Build a solid base first.

My advice for exercisers during their first 2 to 3 years of training is to make everything from head to toe as strong as humanly possible using conventional repetition ranges (for muscle growth). These repetition ranges primarily include 5 to 12 repetitions per set for multi-joint exercises and up to 15 repetitions per set for machine exercises, calf exercises and isolation exercises. By building a reasonable strength base, you will also build a reasonable muscle base. Even if you don't need to train for maximum strength, if your body is much stronger now than it was three years ago, your muscle size will have improved dramatically.

10 tips that will help you lose fat

1. use resistance training to build and nutrition and cardio to burn fat

If you want to lose fat, you should also try to maximize your existing muscle mass. If you don't, then you risk losing fat and muscle and will end up thinner but not with an athletically built body. Don't use resistance training to burn calories and fat. Instead, continue training normally and try to increase the weight on the bar (or at least maintain your current strength levels). Use cardio and nutrition to lose fat. This simple tip will help you build your dream body while losing fat more than any other tip. The human body needs a reason to maintain its muscle mass while dieting. A heavy workout with weights is the mechanism that will do just that.

2. reduce your calories slowly and refrain from excessive jumps when changing your calorie intake

Reducing calorie intake too much and too quickly is a big mistake that many men and women make. When they decide to lose weight and go through a diet phase, they substantially reduce their calorie intake. You should not make this mistake. Instead, you should reduce your calories slowly. I recommend reducing your calorie intake by only 300 to 400 kcal per day for the first two weeks. This small adjustment can be enough to lose weight consistently. It is also much easier to maintain such a small reduction in calorie intake than it is to make sudden drastic reductions of 1000 kcal per day. And why make your diet harder than it needs to be?

If your fat burning rate is not where you would like it to be after two weeks, then you can reduce your calories by another 200 kcal per day and monitor your weight loss over another two weeks. Set yourself the goal of losing 1 kilo of fat per week - and a maximum of 1.5 kilos. This is usually an optimal rate of fat loss for exercisers who want to maintain as much muscle mass as possible while losing fat. This approach will help you achieve the athletic and muscular body you are striving for.

3. don't overdo it with the cardio

Your diet should be the primary driving force behind your fat loss. For this reason, you should first determine your calorie intake before adding additional cardio workouts. If you reduce your calorie intake enough, you may not need any additional cardio training at all. Aim for 3 to 4 cardio workouts per week, each lasting 20 to 30 minutes. This is an excellent way to improve your overall health and aerobic endurance. Don't add more cardio workouts until your weight loss stagnates.

If you are losing fat at a consistent rate, then there is no need to increase the amount of cardio you do. Why change something that is working well?

4. reduce the volume of resistance training during the diet

If you are transitioning to a fat loss diet, then I recommend keeping the same training intensity (weight and reps per set) but reducing the number of sets you perform per exercise or per training session. Recovery will be harder for your body if you consume fewer calories, so reducing the total number of training sets by 20 to 30% can be beneficial.

So if you normally do 4 sets of 10 reps on the bench press, you should do one set less during the diet. If you normally do 20 sets on leg day, you should reduce the set volume to 14 to 16 sets. Remember not to reduce the weight you are using. You should continue to push yourself intensely during training and maximize each set (see related tip in the muscle building section)

5. avoid boring cardio

Cardio training doesn't have to be boring - in fact, cardio shouldn't be boring at all. Forget the treadmill and elliptical and do something fun. Your cardio workouts can include any form of exercise. Go hiking or swimming. Try inline skating or ice skating. If you can't tear yourself away from the gym, try circuits, complexes or HIIT sprints on the treadmill. Even kettlebell swings are more fun than running on the treadmill for hours staring at a wall or TV.

Find a form of cardio that you like. Exercise shouldn't be mentally tiring and boring. A calorie burned is a calorie burned and it doesn't matter how you burn those calories as long as you burn them.

6. avoid low-fat and low-sugar processed foods

Try to avoid eating too many 'low fat' or 'low sugar' foods during your diet. Low-fat foods usually contain added sugars and other ingredients such as thickeners, etc. to make them taste better. Low sugar foods often contain added fats to improve the taste. Low sugar, fat or whatever is not an indicator that a food is inherently healthier. Rather than opting for such foods, stick to whole foods such as meat, vegetables, fruit, dairy, eggs and grains. Whole foods are more nutrient dense and will help you feel more satisfied and full when you're trying to lose fat. In addition to this, foods that are low in nutrient density can cause cravings and cravings as your body tries to get vital nutrients to maintain its basic bodily functions.

7. stop eating bland meals that make it harder for you to stick to your diet

A fat loss diet doesn't have to be all meat, carbs and vegetables. It's perfectly fine to eat things that taste good. If you hate cooking or aren't good at it, try adding simple sauces to your meat. They are easy to prepare and give you a lot of flavor. I like to use some of the following combinations:

  • Abodo sauce and a small amount of sour cream on tilapia
  • Sour cream and salsa with poultry
  • Hot sauce and minced garlic on pork and beef

I also like to make spinach salad with a homemade dressing of red wine vinegar and olive oil.

Sauces and seasonings can change everything. Don't hesitate to use products like seasoning blends, garlic powder and hot sauces to add some flavor to boring meals.

8. forget trends, bad advice and fad diets

Structure your diet plan based on your nutritional tendencies. Many people will tell you to eat a certain way or use the latest fad diet of the month. While these people (and sometimes even trainers) may mean well, it's best to analyze your current eating habits and patterns and build your diet plan based on those habits and patterns. If you are someone who prefers to eat a larger meal in the evening, then save more calories for the time between 17:00 and 21:00. If you like to snack throughout the day, plan high-protein, low-calorie snacks to satisfy your cravings. Document when you eat and what you eat for a week. Then try to put together a high-protein, healthy eating plan that best suits these habits. You'll find it easier to stick to a diet that doesn't leave you starving at the times you would typically eat.

9. ignore the weight loss during the first week of the diet

The weight you lose during the first week doesn't mean much. Here's why...When you reduce your calorie intake, you typically reduce your carbohydrate intake. And if you're eating healthier foods, there's also a very good chance that your salt intake will go down too.

Both carbohydrates and sodium (salt) cause water retention. Less carbohydrates and less salt will therefore result in your body retaining less water. For this reason, you will excrete a lot of water during your first week of the diet. This lost weight is not fat loss.

During the second and third week of your diet, this water excretion process will be over and your weekly weight loss rate will stabilize. During these weeks, the true effects of your reduced calorie intake will become visible.

10. keep your cheat meal windows flexible

Scheduling a cheat meal (not a rampant binge) each week is a good idea. These cheat meals will help you keep your metabolism on track. I recommend the following variations of cheat meals:

  1. Eating as many clean foods as you want for an hour. This will allow you to eat a little more each week, but will keep your calorie intake under control.
  2. One non-clean meal per week where you can eat whatever you want as long as you limit the amount to one plate. This allows you to eat what you want at family gatherings and holidays and relax a bit without looking like one of those bodybuilders who takes their Tupperware containers of food everywhere.

I recommend keeping the times for these cheat meals flexible. By this I mean that you should let your cravings decide when you can cheat, rather than planning these cheat meals in advance. If you've had a stressful day at work and want to eat a little more in the evening, allow yourself a one-hour clean cheat meal. If your boss invites you and your colleagues out for pizza, use your weekly cheat meal and eat 3 slices.

I've found that if I plan my cheat meals in advance, I usually regret it. Something unplanned always happens during the week. For this reason, I prefer to let life take its course and then cheat when it comes up.


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