Adonis again? You could be with these tips…
So you’re a desk bound male professional setting the world alight with your intelligence, hard work, wit, and charm. But the pressure of nailing those deadlines has adversely impacted your Adonis-like figure.
Here are 5 simple tips we use at our Manchester personal training facility to get you started on the road to a serious body…
1. If you’re going to get ripped, you’re going to be to be under 10% body fat. If you don’t have abdominal definition, go ‘low carb’ for about 4 weeks, or until your performance in the gym dips, then carb load once every 4 days (or more, depending on your personal needs). As you get leaner, you can start to introduce more carbs more regularly, but always keep an eye on your fat stores to make sure you’re not getting too much.
Keep your caloric intake on the low side (but don’t go crazy!) until you’re relatively lean, then start ramping your intake up to support your new muscle mass (keep an eye on your body fat levels though). Eat clean and set yourself a protein goal of about 1.6-2g / kg of bodyweight. Good fats, including saturated fats, should contribute about 50% of caloric intake, protein 35% and the rest from vegetables.
Repeat after me: I will not get ripped unless and until my nutrition is right.
2. You need to work out 4 times per week. When I say work out, I mean lift weights. Not pretending to work hard on the cross trainer while checking out the girl in front of you. Although checking out hot chicks might give you a testosterone bump, this is not the way to success. Enter the gym with a written plan – exercise, sets, reps, tempo, and rest. Record the weights you’re lifting.
Understand these variables, manipulate them for your circumstances and goals.
If you need to lose fat, add some high intensity work in at the end of your session – we use tyre flips, prowler pushes and pulling sleds, but if you’re in a commercial facility the rowing machine is very effective too. Go hard!
When it comes to training, remember that more is not better, go hard for no more than an hour, then go home. We regularly see people coming to see us who are in the gym for two hours at a time – honestly if you’re in the gym for two hours and still able to walk at the end of it you’re not doing it right, you should be ****ed after an hour, and you also risk a catabolic hormone cascade that is counterproductive.
3. Periodise. Stick to a workout for 8 consecutive sessions, then change. If you want to get ripped, make your rep range 8-12 reps for 8 sessions, then for the next 4 sessions, increase the weight, switch your exercise selection, and lift for 3-5 reps. Then change your exercise selection again and get back to 8-12 reps. Repeat.
See notes above on adding high intensity work if you need to lose fat.
4. Rest. Your body grows at rest, not during exercise. Focus on recovery – the faster and better you recover from your session, the harder you can go at your next, and the better your results will be.
Again, more is not better when it comes to training – we see people working out 6 and 7 times per week, which under specific circumstances, with specific goals, and with a specific plan, can be exactly what is needed.
For most people and most circumstances though, it leads to chronic overtraining and we’ve had spectacular results with over-trained individuals by significantly reducing workout frequency and volume.
5. Supplements. Are supplemental to a great, high quality diet, lifting heavy and hard 4 times per week, drinking enough water, and getting 8+ hours of unbroken sleep per night. In those circumstances, supplements can help you to get where you want to go. Quality is paramount, though.
If you don’t have, or are not getting, the basics in place, you haven’t earned the right to start smashing whey and BCAA’s yet, and you’d more than likely be wasting your your money for no results anyway (which is another thing we see misguided individuals doing on a regular basis!).
To your lean, healthy, optimised future,
Matt & Dee