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Bodybuilding and Commitment



Aug 11, 2010
Bodybuilding takes commitment

No one ever got the look of an action hero by just lifting weights. I’ll get to some good work out programs because they are important, but first I will touch on the type of foods that allow the body to get the most out of the exercise programs.

Protein is the most important type of food for bodybuilding. Protein comes in meats, eggs, beans, and nuts. Smaller amounts of protein may come in some breads and cheeses, but the previously mentioned foods are the main protein sources. If you’ve seen a study that says a high protein diet can be harmful, know that plenty of studies also show otherwise. To be safe just drink large amounts of water because that will help your body digest all the protein and it will also help your kidney.

Carbohydrates also play an important role in bodybuilding

There are two types of carbs: fast digesting, and slow digesting. Fast digesting carbs usually come from white powders like flour and sugar. They cause an insulin spike which can cause your body to gain weight. Slow digesting carbs are whole grain foods, yams, and beans. Their slower digestion rates cause them to provide energy for a longer amount of time and they do not spike insulin levels. Eat slow digesting carbs before a workout to give you the energy for it and then eat fast digesting carbs afterward to switch your muscles from a catabolic to an anabolic phase. It is recommended to get 2.5-3 times your bodyweight in carbs/day.

Fats are also important to a diet as long as they are not the wrong kind of fats (saturated). Essential fatty acids are found in fish, nuts, flax seeds, almonds, and avacados, and more.

The next nutrition tips involve daily caloric intake. First, to find your maintenance level simply eat when you are hungry and stop when you are not. Count the calories you consume during the day and you will have your maintenance level of calories. Eat 200-300 more calories a day so that you can grow. Another necessity is to eat six meals a day. The extra meals (with the right portions) will give your body consistent nutrients to all day rather than at certain times. It will also prevent overeating.

Beginners in bodybuilding have two main advantages when it comes to weight training. First, you can see remarkable muscle growth since your body is not used to lifting weights. Second, your muscles recover significantly quicker than more advanced bodybuilders, so you can train more often. A full body routine every other day is great for beginners for these reasons.

Before working out, warm up. A 2-5 minute jog and stretching every muscle is important to start a full body routine. High repetitions help the body prepare for more intense programs later. In this sample exercise routine I’ve included the amount of sets next to the amount of reps (2-12 means two sets, and twelve reps). Rest for about 45 seconds in between sets.

Example bodybuilding workout routine:

Crunches 2x20
Squats 2x12
Leg Curls (or lunges) 2x12
Flat-Bench Press 2x12
Lat Pulldowns (or barbell rows) 2x12
Shoulder Press 2x12
Tricep Pushdowns (or overhead extensions) 2x12
Barbell Curls 2x12
Standing Calf Raises 2x15-20

Change up your routine every six weeks. After about 18 weeks you will be ready for a more intense split. Now it is important to cover the topic of overtraining in more depth. Everyone has a different threshold for overtraining, so to find yours train with high intensity and then add more rest days when you feel you might be overtraining. Symptoms of overtraining include: reduced or no muscle gains, weight loss, swollen lymph nodes, lack of motivation, irritability, insomnia, frequent injuries, lack of energy, reduced strength level, overall feeling of fatigue, increased blood pressure, abnormal heart rate, headaches, and tremors or twitches.

Sample split (I do not mean to imply that you do these in a row. Day 1, 2, and 3 just means whenever you work out. Make sure to include rest days):

Day 1: Chest, Triceps, Front Delts, and Medial Delts
Bench Press 3x6-12
Incline Bench Press 3x6-12
Decline Bench Press 3x6-12
Shoulder Press 3x6-12
Lateral Raises 3x10-12
Tricep Pushdowns 3x8-12
Overhead Extensions 3x8-12
Day 2: Legs
Squats 4x6-12
Leg Press 4x6-10
Leg Curls 4x6-12
Calf Raises 3x15-20

Day 3: Back, Biceps, Rear Delts and Abs
Deadlifts 4x6-12
Pulldowns 3x6-12
Barbell Rows 3x6-12
Seated Pulley Rows 3x6-12
Rear Lateral Raises 2x10-12
Standing Cambered Bar Curls 3x6-12
Incline Curls 2x6-12
Hammer Curls 2x6-12
Decline Situps 3x20
Leg Raises 3x20
Twists 3x20

It is wise to begin your split with your worst muscle group following a rest day or 2. This way you can hit it with the most intensity while you are fresh from the time off of training. More splits and work out routines can be found online easily. Just keep in mind the muscle groups you want to train and go from there. Good luck with your bodybuilding routine!
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