What I’m Reading err Friday: PWGs aka “Pre-Wedding Guns”

My computer crapped out on me this week. So I’m feeling a bit “Day late and a dollar short”. But now I have this fancy new laptop… so let’s rock and roll. Two weekends ago, I celebrated the 4th wedding (BOOM Tep and Nick) on my roster for this year and am gearing up for the 5th one next weekend (so pumped Heather and Jon!!). Needless to say… I’ve got matrimonial bells ringing in my ears. And of course, workouts that will make you look phenomenal in a dress. Here goes…

 

Jeff Cavaliere always delivers excellent workout routines and advice. In this video, he focuses on triceps aka the back/bottom of your arm. If you plan on raising the roof at your reception, you’ll want to work on these muscles.

Bodyweight Triceps Workout (SORE IN 6 MINUTES!)– Jeff Cavaliere with Athlean-X.com

 

Can’t forget the biceps! In this article, 10 fitness experts weigh in on their favorite routines for better biceps. My personal favorite? Chin Ups.

The 10 Best Biceps Training Tips– T-nation.com

 

Last, but not least. The shoulders. If you want that nice, round, capped look… you’ll want to make sure to give your shoulders some love. This article is great at touching on the three parts of the shoulder and even includes a workout at the bottom.

8 Insider Tips To Build Your Ultimate Shoulders!– Christian King with Bodybuilding.com

What I’m Reading Wednesday: ABSolutely Ready for the Summer

 

Do you want a visible 6-pack or flat abs? While it takes a lot of ***consistent*** work, it is possible. Just make sure you’re not spinning your wheels with endless hours of cardio or doing hundreds of crunches a day.

 

Should you plank more? Do more cardio?  Train your abs everyday? There are many confusing facts about core training. This article helps clear some up. My own 2 cents:

  • Planks do a have a lot of benefits, but if you can hold it for over 60 secs… you’re not squeezing hard enough or it’s time to master a new exercise
  • I am a big fan of fish oil, but not necessarily the other supplements they recommend

8 Inconvenient Truths About Ab Training – TC Luoma on T-nation.com

 

Diet is extremely important to see any definition in your core. Here are some simple foods to keep on hand to make it easier:

  • Rice veggies (veggies in general, but these mix better with other foods)
  • Hot sauces (also mustard, spices, salsa, soy sauce and lemon juice) = low calorie & big flavor
  • Frozen bananas (mainly to replace ice cream)
  • Quality protein powder (I personally use MTS Machine Whey Protein… mint or peanut butter cookies and cream flavors)

Tip: 4 Convenient Foods You Should Be Eating – Chris Shugart on T-nation.com

 

 

Mind muscles connection (you know… actually the using the muscle you’re trying to engage) is also important.  Here is a simple trick to improve your communication to your abs. I wonder if it’s called beach body because the ocean can actually help you squeeze your abs better?

Your BEST Abs Contraction Ever (PERIOD!!) – Jeff Cavaliere on AthleanX.com

 

 

What I’m Reading Wednesday: Intermittent Fasting (IF), Weight Loss Exercises, and Diet Mistakes

There is a ton of confusing miss-leading stupid information online about nutrition. Let’s try to sort some things out. And as always, if you have an specific (or vague) questions… feel free to reach out to me at any time.

One of the current trends is Intermittent Fasting (IF). There are several ways to use IF:

  • Skipping meals,
  • Only eating during a 8 or 12 hour window,
  • Fasting for an entire day etc.

There are some promising benefits (although nothing scientifically conclusive in humans), but if your goal is weight loss… a calorie deficit is still king.  Can IF help? Sure… as long as you eat less calories during the day because you’re limited by time. But if you eat more than you need, you’ll still put on weight.

You can’t out-work a bad diet.
No.
Really.
Exercise should be about getting stronger, faster, and more capable… not to negate last night’s cheesecake. And it’s really not worth all that extra effort.
The Best Way to Lose 5 LBS of Body Fat (AND FASTEST!)– Jeff Cavaliere with Athleanx.com
Are you making these simple diet mistakes
– Doing too much cardio?
– Not prepping your meals?
– Not tracking your calories or dropping them too quickly?

What I’m Reading Wednesday: Sleep, Sugar, and Scales #FALSE

Sugar is the devil #FALSE
Sugar isn’t the devil.  It’s in many foods, processed and unprocessed, and does have a biological purpose.  It also makes stuff taste really yummy.  Which could cause us to eat more of it.  Now eating too much food, that’s where things start getting hot.  Sugar could be fueling the flames of unhealthy eating habits, but it’s not lighting the spark.
The surprising truth about sugar– Brian St. Pierre and Krista Scott-Dixon from PrecisionNutrition.com
The scale is the best way to measure progress #FALSE
Scales can be a helpful tool in measuring progress, but it gives an incomplete picture.  Your weight can fluctuate for many reasons… throughout the week, day, and even hour.  Keep it in your tool box, but also keep track of your energy level, mood, and the way your clothes fit.
You can catch up on sleep on the weekends #FALSE
Yea, no… this doesn’t actually work. Your body can’t tell the difference between a weekday and weekend. It’s not about the total sum at the end of the week. It just knows about natural rhythms. If you lose sleep, you’ll pay for it.  Obviously this will happen on occasion (for good and bad reasons), but it’s best to avoid making a habit of it. Especially if you think that you’ll be able to make up for it later.
Tip: Do You Have Social Jet Lag? – Tessa Gurley on T-nation.com

What I’m Reading Wednesday: Fix Sour Power Moves

Adding power moves into your exercise routine is a great way to get strong, burn more calories and increase athleticism.  And feel like you have super powers.
First step, make your warm up freaking awesome.  These means adding in explosive movements to wake up the CNS (central nervous system). Eric Brown does a great job of explaining what moves to do to warm up for specific compound exercises.  Check it out:
How to Increase Your PRs with Explosive Warm Ups – Eric Brown on Bodybuliding.com
Want to torch calories, sprint faster, or get a better butt?  Try Kettlebell swings.  This high reward exercise also comes with it’s risks.  Check out this two important fixes:
Tip: The Exercise Most People Screw Up– Tony Gentilcore with T-nation.com
Loaded jump squats (generally with a bar on your back) is challenging move that can produce great results.  Or completely jack up your back and spine.  Check out this modification:
Tip: A Better Way to Jump Squat- Jake Tuura with T-nation.com

What I’m Reading Wednesday: Sun’s Out, Guns Out

It seems like it went from mild winter weather to summer temps over night on the East coast.  Which can only mean one thing, sun’s out… guns out.  Let’s see what you’ve got!
Arm, Exercise, Fist, Flex, Health, Human, Muscle, Power
Credit: Pixabay
Want those boulder shoulders?  Build sculpted delts using heavy and light weights:
How to Get Bigger Shoulders (LIGHT WEIGHTS!)– Jeff Cavaliere on AthleanX.com
Tired of boring bicep curls?  Kick it up a knock using this banded tip:
Your BEST Biceps Contraction Ever (PERIOD!!)– Jeff Cavaliere on AthleanX.com
And in case that doesn’t do the trick, here are 48 more versions of the bicep curl to help create that peak when you flex on Fridays:
48 Different Ways To Do A Bicep Curl – Brad Borland on MuscleandStrength.com
Tricep Dips can be a great way to add muscle to the back & bottom of you arm. Or really mess up your shoulders. Check out this quick video on how switching your hand position could make all the difference:
Stop Doing Bench Dips Like This – Jeff Cavaliere on AthleanX.com

What I’m Reading Wednesday: #Fail

Sometimes, it’s just as important to know what NOT to do.

To avoid missing gainz, but more importantly… not hurting yourself, check out this 23 common gym mistakes:
23 Greatest Exercise Fails (HORRIBLE!)– Jeff Cavaliere with AthleanX.com

Biggest fitness lies as told by some of the top players in the industry. They cover effort, muscle growth, diet, stretching and “experts”. Check them out:
Cable ab crunches are great way to size to you 6-pack muscles… if you do them correctly. Otherwise, it’s a great way to jack up your back. Check out the difference:
Tip: Rope Crunches: You’re Doing Them Wrong– John Romano with T-nation.com