Should You Always Use a Full Range of Motion in Your Training?

bench press flickrIf you go to the gym regularly, you’ll see people doing exercises through a partial range of motion all the time. Half bench presses, half squats – even quarter squats. And if you are anything like me, you’ll probably shake your head disapprovingly at them. But are they right? Is there any value to using a partial range of motion, or should you always use a full range of motion? Well the answer is, it depends.

First, you have to decide how you actually define a full range of motion. For instance, in the squat, is it parallel or is it well below parallel? In the overhead press, is it bar below the chin or right down to the chest? In pull-ups, is it chin over the bar or chest touching the bar? In parallel bar dips, is it the backs of the arms parallel to the floor or is it well below that? I could go on, but you get the point. Continue Reading →

Weight Training for Women: How to Get a Lean, Hard and Sexy Body

Most women avoid weight training, because they think it will make them look bulky and unfeminine. But actually, nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, if you want to get that lean, toned, curvy, sexy body that will turn heads everywhere you go, you’ve really got to lift some weights.

And not just the little pink dumbbells – they won’t do anything for you at all. You need to train hard and heavy – almost identical to how a man would train really.

Women don’t have anywhere near the amount of testosterone needed to build big muscles, and all those women you see posing on stage in bodybuilding competitions are taking huge doses of steroids and other growth promoting drugs. It’s simply impossible for a woman to look that way naturally. Continue Reading →

The 5×5 Workout Routine for Strength and Size

bodybuilder 2 flickrIf you want to substantially increase your strength, as well as your muscle size, one of the best ways of doing that is with a 5×5 workout routine.

The 5×5 system of training has been around for decades, and it’s still one of the most popular training methods there is, for the simple reason that it works so well.

Reg Park (who built 20 inch arms and did a 500lb bench press before steroids were ever used in the sport) trained this way in the 1950s. And Arnold Schwarzenegger (whose mentor was Reg Park) later used it in his training to build a solid foundation, well before he ever used more conventional bodybuilder style training.

The method was then further popularized in the 1970s by legendary football strength coach Bill Starr, who used it to train all his athletes. Continue Reading →

Whey Protein Powder: Benefits, Types and Best Brands

Whey protein is probably the most widely used sports nutrition supplement in the world today. And there’s good reason for that, as not only does it provide you with a convenient source of the highest quality protein available to help you build muscle and burn fat, but it also has a number of important health benefits as well.

But not all whey protein is the same of course. There are three main types and dozens of different brands of whey protein powder. And not surprisingly they vary considerably, both in the amount of protein and other ingredients they contain, as well as in taste, digestibility and of course price.

So what are the benefits of whey protein? What is the best type of whey protein powder for you personally? And are there any specific brands that are particularly worth using? In this article I’ll give you the answer to those questions. Continue Reading →