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Articles Tagged: strength training

Troubleshooting Weight Gain

A couple of years back I wrote an article series on troubleshooting weight loss that was quite popular with my clients who were struggling with identifying the reason they’re weight loss efforts had stalled.

I have been meaning to write a companion article for some time now on the other side of the coin–weight gain, for my hardgainer athletes who find themselves in plateaus on the other end of the spectrum: where they feel like they should be gaining weight but are either maintaining weight, or even losing weight.

I unfortunately got distracted by other obligations but now I am getting this article out there once and for all.

When I talked about the issues with weight loss plateaus, they mainly centered around unwittingly eliminating the calorie deficit that weight loss requires through one or more factors.

These same factors are typically responsible for stalls in weight gain for those looking to put on size, so it behooves us to review them, but from the perspective of someone desiring to add mass rather than reduce it. Continue Reading Troubleshooting Weight Gain »

Two Critical Factors to Natural Muscle Gain That You’re Currently Ignoring

“I work out hard all the time and I just don’t grow!” Sound familiar? How about, “No matter how much I eat, I can’t gain weight!” or, “My bench has been stuck at __ lbs forever and I just can’t get stronger!”—any of those sound like something you’ve heard recently, or perhaps even said yourself?

Every day, thousands of hopeful hardgainers travel to their local gyms, diligently work through the latest muscle magazine or bodybuilding.com workout program, and summarily fail to achieve any of the incredible results promised by these programs despite their best and continued effort.

While some maintain a headstrong attitude in the face of continued failure for years, most eventually burn out and give up. And who can blame them? Nothing is less motivating than working excruciatingly hard at something, only to see literally nothing for your hard work.

The reason I am so familiar with this feeling is because I went through the same thing myself as a young adult. Throughout high school and early college, I was a scrawny, muscleless weakling and was treated as such by everyone around me.

Continue Reading Two Critical Factors to Natural Muscle Gain That You’re Currently Ignoring »

Lifting Weights Causes Breast Shrinkage: True or False?

“Am I going to lose my breasts by lifting weights?” This is a very common question that enters women’s minds when they first begin considering weight training. After all, most of the photos we see online of really fit women show either relatively flat chests, or breast augmentation, so it’s understandable that one would assume this was the case.

This concern has scared many women away from incorporating weight lifting into their workout regimen as a part of achieving their dream body. It is pretty clear that media doesn’t help this, as it continually promotes weight lifting with images of extremely-muscular women on stage strutting their “stuff” with no natural breast tissue to speak of. Continue Reading Lifting Weights Causes Breast Shrinkage: True or False? »

Effective Training for the Middle-Aged Man

It’s a fact of life that as we progress through the years, our bodies tend to break down—unfortunate but true. However with proper attention paid to your fitness habits, you can not only slow this process down, but even reverse some of the ageing affects that have occurred.

Instead of waiting around for all kinds of diseases to attack and damage our bodies, we can choose to fight back. We can choose to exercise. A few of the hundreds of benefits of weightlifting and exercising include the prevention of heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, back pain, osteoporosis, psychological effects… I could go on and on. Continue Reading Effective Training for the Middle-Aged Man »

How Do I Get Rid Of Cellulite?

Cellulite is every girl’s nightmare. It is mostly seen among women, although some men have it as well. You don’t have to be obese or overweight to have cellulite; even “skinny” people can have it. Because of the impact that cellulite has on us—mostly our appearance—countless companies have been coming up with solutions to get rid of it, from creams to skinny wraps… I’ve seen it all.

The truth is that all those creams and treatments don’t work. Cellulite cannot be erased; its appearance can only be minimized. But, before I get into the how and why, let’s figure out what the condition really IS and how it forms. Continue Reading How Do I Get Rid Of Cellulite? »

How to Perform a Standing Shoulder Press with Impeccable Form

Just the other day, I shared a video with Coach B of myself performing a set of seated dumbbell shoulder presses using 120lb dumbbells. This was a personal best of mine and I was super proud of my accomplishment… so I sent over the video expecting major props and that’s that.

Of course, Coach B being the hard-ass that he is, followed his praise up with some useful feedback regarding my range of motion, which got me thinking, why would I cheat myself? If I am going to spend my time doing something, I’d better be doing it to the best of my ability. And that’s the thing—even us coaches need to be reminded of this from time to time because in the quest to always push forward performance-wise, form can sometimes be pushed aside if we’re not careful to prioritize it. Continue Reading How to Perform a Standing Shoulder Press with Impeccable Form »

Will Lifting Weights Make Me Bulky?

This is one question that will always come up when the topic of lifting weights comes up in a discussion involving women. This is a hard concept for women to understand because there is such a misunderstanding on the effect weight training has on the female physique.

We have been fed images of the enormously-muscular, veiny male body-builders holding weights or being featured on articles about lifting weights for years, so it’s understandable that this connection would be made. It doesn’t help that some unscrupulous folks in the fitness industry promote the idea that traditional weight training leads to a “bulky” body in an effort to steer consumers to their fad programs.

The weight room is also traditionally seen as the “men’s room”, while the cardio area is where most women spend their time. To feed into this mindset, many gyms even have a “women’s area” that is filled with tiny little weights and even more cardio equipment to underline this concept that women should not lift heavy weights. Continue Reading Will Lifting Weights Make Me Bulky? »

What Makes Training Ground TransformationNATION Different?

I am getting really pumped up for the opening of my new and improved training facility, and I wanted to take some time to explain why exactly Training Ground TransformationNATION will be like no other gym or training experience in Chicagoland.

Note: Be sure to scroll down to the bottom for a limited time offer for membership rates!

Most importantly, all we will do are Transformations–we won’t cater to any other goals at this facility. This allows us to stick to what we do best and continue to hone our ability. This means we help overweight people get SHREDDED, and help skinny dudes get JACKED. That’s it.

TGTN is not going to be your typical gym with rows and rows of elliptical machines, treadmills and selectorized resistance training machines. Nor are we going to be anything like your average personal training studio with a bunch of prissy, useless equipment like bosu balls and 3lb pink dumbbells. Continue Reading What Makes Training Ground TransformationNATION Different? »

Perfect Posture Series: Protracted Shoulder Girdle

Look around you at the gym, or in any public place and you will see a common trait shared by the vast majority: forward-slumped shoulders with a closed-off chest cavity. This posture is so prevalent that people don’t even recognize it when they see it… it just looks like normal posture to them.

The issue is, of course, that it’s not a healthy position to be in for a number of reasons that I am going to outline for you today. Before I get into the reasons why I feel that this postural abnormality needs to be addressed, let me explain what exactly is going on when someone has a protracted shoulder girdle. Continue Reading Perfect Posture Series: Protracted Shoulder Girdle »

Why I Hate the “Women Only” Section

Time to work out. You walk into the gym, and are immediately met with the intense smell of sweat, dirty socks and rubber flooring. All around you, angry meat-heads are violently slamming weights, screaming (in a manner you’re not sure is caused by intense pain or some kind of primitive, primal rage), and storming through the gym with a look on their face that says, “Get in my way, even for a second and I will END.YOUR.LIFE.”

You’re already sweating in anticipation of the awkward, frightening experience you will have in the weight room. You start listening to the voice in your head telling you to come back later to work out, no big deal. No, you say, I’m here, I’m going to do it.

You fumble for your membership key card, which you timidly hand to the front desk attendant who is looking at you with a raised eyebrow, probably wondering why you’re sweating so much even though you haven’t yet started your workout.

After procrastinating for as long as you can in the locker room, you finally take a deep breath and prepare yourself for what lies ahead. Just as you’re about to enter the lion’s den, you notice an inviting sign at the opposite end of the locker room. “Women-Only Weights Room” it says. Continue Reading Why I Hate the “Women Only” Section »