Bright flexes & a more than OK approach...


21 days ago by astronomydork

Conversing with others over the years with respect to weightlifting, a recurring theme continues to surface. Many that currently pump iron reflect on the days when they first started & detail how little they knew of what they were doing. I’d like to offer an overview to my approach to hitting the gym, with a special focus on targeted muscle groups & repetitions.

A lot of my approach is centered on Triple H’s (WWE) lifting method. It’s not perfect, but it can easily be tailored to an individual's goals & personal preferences.  The first area of focus is on muscle groups.  Let’s say day 1 of the gym is on a Monday & I want to target my push muscles.  When lifting free weights or on a machine, I want to isolate my chest with certain exercises. Then I want to focus on my triceps & then finally shoulders.  Keep in mind that often an exercise will isolate one primary muscle and have a secondary muscle benefit from the specific lift performed.  For example, a pushup will mostly work one’s chest, however the shoulders & triceps will be activated too. Day 1 I want to go light so I will set my reps between 12-15 but light in weight & between 2-3 sets.  Where a spotter isn’t needed & the weight can be easily controlled.  Technique in lifts is indescribably beneficial long term for health & sculpting. A couple days later in the week when my push muscles are no longer sore, say on Thursday, then I will lift heavier in that session.  The repetitions will be between 8-10 & the weight will be bumped up a bit more than during Monday training.  This keeps the muscles guessing & promotes growth.   

The rest of the areas of the body are up the individual.  For example, in our weekly scenario I would do heavy legs on Tuesday ( light legs on Friday ) with reps ranging from 8-10 for three sets.  I also like to incorporate chin-ups for the back & biceps.  I don’t like to get too crazy with back exercises, because backs are to be treasured & well cared for.  There are some excellent back exercises & machines out there.  Biceps are a muscle I don’t like to get too sore with lactic acid, but I like to get a good pump going.  The blood flow promotes gains.  I like cardio a lot more these days.  Stairmasters & ellipticals are wonderful machines for getting shredded.  

It’s important to not try and overdo it when first getting back into the weight room after some time off or stepping in for the first time. Injury prevention starts with knowing the body. This knowledge is obtained by not overdoing it right away and by not going too hard at first. Maybe you could have done three more sets of 10 isolating the shoulders on another machine, but it is best to see how one’s body reacts to a certain level of strenuous exercise, before pushing too hard to the point where injury potential becomes a concern. Self-pride can sometimes get in the way with this. Knowledge of the self includes honesty. I once heard that it takes 21 days to break or start a new habit. Three weeks of consistency with appropriate time off for recovery will do world of good. Not just in the mirror, but in the roots of the tree of mind as well…