Thanks again to everyone who watched and took part in the discussion Gymchat 213 (Roundtable) - How to get BIGGER and STRONGER - much appreciated. If you haven't seen it yet (or simply want to go over a particular point again), here's the entire video.
Thanks again to everyone who watched and took part in the discussion Gymchat 211 - Training Approaches (Roundtable) [with Josh Hewett] - much appreciated. If you haven't seen it yet (or simply want to go over a particular point again), here's the entire video.
Elite Recoup contains Branch Chain Amino Acids and complex of B vitamins. While formulated to reduce muscle soreness and shorten recovery time between workouts, I found this easy-to-use powder equally effective as a pre-workout stimulant thanks to the addition of Citrulline Malate. My favorite pre-workout cocktail includes 5g of high-quality creatine mixed with 2 scoops of Elite Recoup. We give it: ★★★★☆.
First up, an Under Armour shirt with several sensors built in (pictured above). Measuring things like heart rate, temperature and speed.
Recently we looked at the Radiate Athletics shirt on Kickstarter, which promises to change colour according to body temperature. Interesting idea.
Of course, added to the above are the various strength-assisting, compression and moisture wicking items that are seen in any number of gyms and competitions.
We've noted a number of superb resources - books, DVDs, equipment, workshops and sites - in the Strength & Fitness Newsletter this year. Here are a few personal favourites.Precision Nutrition Fat Loss Crash Course.
If one of your goals is to shed a bit of excess fat, but you're not quite sure what to do/where to start, have a look at the Precision Nutrition Fat Loss Crash Course. Absolutely free.
A compilation of training strategies from some of the heaviest players in the Iron Game. This is training the old-fashioned way - heavy weights, good food and plenty of recovery. Beautiful.
Maik's take on the strength-training world is not exactly mainstream; but it's certainly well-supported and highly effective. Good stuff.
Well made, nice and tough, fast, and they can certainly handle heavy loads. Perfect.
Advanced bar moves, handstand push-ups and a whole lot more.
Love a spot of Rock Climbing? Check this out.
If you've ever been told you have a condition like Tennis Elbow or Golfer's Elbow, you need this. Brilliant.
The second Super Human Workshop was truly incredible, and a look at the many people involved will show you exactly why. To say there was some fantastic information shared is an understatement. Loved it.
If you've ever tried any of the StrongerGrip gear (and if you're a grip fan, you absolutely need to give it a run - superb equipment), you'll certainly appreciate this. After being in the works for years, the StrongerGrip Modular Grip System is finally ready for prime time.
As goals go, this one was certainly ambitious :
Physicist Francis Slakey committed himself to climbing the highest peak on every continent and surfing every ocean.
This is a glimpse at that incredible goal, and the various challenges he encountered along the way.
Suffice to say that if you enjoy a bit of stone work from time-to-time, this DVD should definitely be in your collection.
I love reading books from people who have 'walked the walk', and Andy Bolton's certainly done that. Supersize Your Strength is simply a 16 week training program helping you to replicate that tremendous strength in your own training.
RunTarget is an application for your smartphone that keeps track of where you are, and how fast you are running at any point in time. Well worth checking out.
Club swinging is fantastic, but where do you start? Right here.
Want to lift more weight, and get seriously strong abs in the process? Grab this.
As a standalone grip session, or a part of other exercises. Good fun.
When it comes to recovery work though, I'm always in two minds as to what to do. Should the hands be treated separately, and if so, how? What sorts of techniques are available?
Helping us get a handle on things is Strongman, Mash Monster and Personal Trainer Matt Hunt. Fantastic.
Join us for Gymchat 170 - Intermittent Fasting.
This week we're taking a look at this fascinating approach. Where do you start, and why would you want to? What are the benefits, and is it for everyone, or only those trying to shed some excess bodyfat?
It's safe to say that there's a lot to consider.
In this week's Gymchat we'll be taking a look at the nutritional side of things; the various foods and drinks to consume (and when) which help keep your post-workout soreness to a minimum. And naturally, if you've got any questions on your own nutritional needs, we'll be more than happy to go through as many as possible.
Join us for Gymchat 169 - Recovery Foods.
Helping us explore this fascinating topic is none other than ultrarunner, airline captain and insanely competitive triathlete, Chas Melichar. Fantastic.
NB : to see all of these as they appear (and to share your own thoughts on things), the simplest way is to follow me on Google+. You'll see these, and a whole lot more.
No matter what your sleep is like at the moment - and how you'd like to fine-tune things - we'd love to hear about it. See you there.
Sleep is a topic that's long fascinated me, and it was one of the first ones we tackled in the original Twitterchats (now Gymchats); nearly 3 years ago.
This week I'd like to return to it with the simple questions :
'How do you sleep?' and 'How does it influence your recovery?'
Look forward to hearing your answers, no matter what they are. Biphasic sleep, ZMA, late evening meals; whatever works for you.
See you there.
NB : If you've just joined us on Google+, welcome. Join us on Mar 7, and add a comment/ask a question or three. Dive in.
Who : Strength-training fans
Topic : Recovery Methods : Sleep II
When : Wed Mar 7, 9pm EDT (2am UTC)
How : Post a comment, question or reply
Where : https://plus.google.com/u/0/113406428532094481598/posts/1k2YnK3A8my
If you've never been to one of these discussions before, here's how to join in the fun. Simple, quick to set up and free.
And to see when it's on in your timezone, head over to the calendar.
Incidentally, cheers for all the feedback on the Maik Wiedenbach interview we mentioned last week. For those that haven't seen it yet, head over here.
The Gymchats are a mix of discussion and interview; looking at a different training-related topic each week. To take part, just add a question or comment to the main discussion thread (and the thread is announced in the newsletter, the forums and on Google+ itself - wherever you are, you'll see it).
NB : if you're a professional trainer, coach or athlete - and would like to share your experience with the fantastic audience here - I'd love to hear from you. Just post a comment below, or contact me privately.
Hello everyone, since this is my first article for Straight to the Bar, I'd like to introduce myself. My name is Maik Wiedenbach, I am a NY based personal trainer (or as I like to call it, physique architect), nutritionist and author of "101 Fitness Myths.
I've been a professional athlete for 10 years before switching to coaching and my motto is "Anyone can be in great shape". My articles, drawn from my extensive research and practical experience attempt to cut through the fog and clutter in the fitness world.
Over the next couple weeks, I will be posting a series of articles regarding nutrition, training and the fitness mind set as such. I am extremely thrilled to be part of the Straight to the Bar community.
So lets dive in, the first topic is genetics. People often complain about theirs, admire others and blame their DNA for everything bad in the world. But how important is your genetic make up really?
I don't have the genetics
I hear this a lot - both in the gym and casual conversation. Genetics are a favorite scapegoat for athletic shortcomings. We blame genetics for our failure to build muscle or lose body fat. But how much do genetics really influence your success in the gym?
The answer is less than you would like to believe. While everyone has inherited a certain blueprint, which includes having good and not-so-good muscle groups, certain hormonal levels, and fat storage tendencies, it is also true that ANYONE can get in amazing shape.
You are trying to build the best body for you, not to emulate someone else.
Think of your body as a plant. Given the right conditions, a plant will grow and blossom. If it doesn't, that means something is wrong-- a parasite, not enough light, or too much water, perhaps. The same applies to your body: There is always an explanation for why you're not progressing.
Success in training has three pillars: training, recovery, and nutrition. Most people at best get two out of three right.
Most of us don't have the potential of Arnold Schwarzenegger, but that doesn't mean we cannot achieve our own goals. By way of example, look at the guy next to Arnold: Frank Zane.
Yet, he won Mr. Olympia three times, beating Arnold!
How did he do it? He stuck to his diet, trained with unmatched intensity, and did not take no for an answer. He realized that he couldn't compete with Arnold on the basis of mass; so he created the most symmetrical physique, which many people still consider as close to perfect as a human can get.
Frank Zane's story is inspiring. Your first step is to honestly assess yourself, your schedule, and your training experience, and devise the plan that's right for you.
For those who are new to these conversations, a quick definition : the Gymchats are weekly discussions (currently held on Google+) on a variety of fitness-related topics. Everything from nutrition to competition; if it relates to training, we'll be talking about it.
To give you an idea of what these look like, the most recent Gymchats have been listed below :
This week we're taking a look at this enigmatic activity, and finding out just what I'm missing out on. How to train for it and how it helps with other forms of
your training (and overall condition). Fantastic.
Gymchat 144 - Training at Home
Conversation on Wed Nov 16, 9pm EDT (1am UTC)
This week we're returning to our conversation on Training at Home - equipment & space required, sharing progress and getting feedback. The many ways to make the most of what's available. Fantastic.
Gymchat 143 - Strength Training Over 40
Raymond Ho, interviewed by Kirk Fontaine
Conversation on Wed Nov 9, 9pm EST (2am GMT)
This week we'll be returning to our discussion, looking at the nutritional, recovery, injury and equipment considerations related to training at this age. Everything that will help make sure you're stronger, healthier and in generally better condition in your 40s (and onward) than you are/were in your 20s.
Gymchat 142 - Fitness & Autism
Eric Chessen, interviewed by Kirk Fontaine
Conversation on Wed Nov 2, 9pm EST (2am GMT)
This week we'll be returning to our discussion on training approaches, focusing on the many aspects of fitness other than the lifting itself. What's your current diet like, and do you take any supplements? What sort of music do you listen to whilst training, or do you prefer to lift in silence? Other than getting a good nights' sleep, how do you recover after a heavy session?
This week we're continuing our discussion on Hand Strength, focusing on the Grip Training side of things. What it is, why it's important and how to go about it. Fantastic.
Gymchat 138 - Hand Strength
Conversation on Wed Oct 5, 9pm EDT (1am UTC)
This week we're taking an in-depth look at all aspects of Hand Strength. What it is, why it's important and how to train for it. Fantastic.
Gymchat 137 - Grip, Clubs & Health
Conversation on Wed Sep 28, 9pm EDT (1am UTC)
This week we're taking a look at this superb partnership, particularly when it comes to using equipment such as clubs. Beautiful things.