Builders and Lifters Common Q&As Part 1.

At the wildly popular group builders and lifters we attract a lot of people from advanced to brand new and  with over 100,000 members us administrators see a lot of repetitive questions. To better serve the community I have decided to go through the most common questions. . The anwsers  may not  represent he ONLY WAY but they do represent a good way,

Can I make myself Taller with Exercise?

No, just no.

Can I train X body parts together?

Yes, there are a thousand ways to pair body parts and anything from one body part a day to full body training 3 times a week will work.  The million-dollar question is what works best for you that you enjoy.   Optimal Training frequency for you is based on  countless factors such as nutrition, sleep, natural stress levels ect, current muscular development, training age ect.

Example Splits that work can be found here

Will running help me lose weight? How many Calories should I eat to build muscle ? Will crunches help my abs show?

Your body burns fat  for fuel when you are  in a calorie deficit( you are burning more calories than you are eating)  ,so if you don’t eat it you won’t have to burn it.

Overall calorie intake and expenditure determines whether you are in enough of a deficit to burn fat or have enough excess calories to build muscle. There is no straightforward answer to this question without knowing your entire diet plan , estimated daily calorie  expenditure ect goals ect. You’ll figure it out , don’t sweat the little stuff . Changing your physique is not one meal , night or week , it’s a consistent practice.

Exercise helps us lose weight because it burns calories for energy to perform and once the body is in a calorie deficit if cannot burn calories so it burns stored fat . Simply put  fat is stored calories to use later .

Also  as mentioned above fat is stored randomly over the body, the stomach is such a area and if you do not shed enough fat your abs will never shoiw.

What do I need to do to build muscle?

Muscles grow because you tear down the fibers with exercise(stretching and shortening under tension), it produces  a hormonal response, and tension in the muscle . The body compensates by building back / becoming just a little bigger in case you do it again to better match the stress.

Be consistent with your training and seek progression WITHOUT sacrificing exercise form.  Form is key to building muscle because without proper from tension that should be making your muscles grow will be in your joints and surrounding muscles.

Why do I usually feel better after a workout?

Intense exercise releases endorphins, the bodies natural way to get you through hard times. They trigger a general positive feeling in the body and even act as analgesics, meaning they help deal with pain .

That is why runners often say they are “chasing a running high”. It’s also a physical stress relief outlet which improves mental health.

Why do my muscles get bigger during a workout then return to  normal? What is the pump? Can I stay pumped up all the time? Is the pump valuable for muscle growth?

Your muscles have better shape mid workout because they are full of blood,  bodybuilders term this phenomenon” DA PUMP”.

The pump occurs because the veins taking blood out of working muscles are compressed by muscular contractions. However, the arteries continue to deliver blood into the muscles, creating an increased amount of intra-muscular blood plasma. This causes plasma to seep out of the capillaries and into the interstitial spaces (the area between muscle cells and blood vessels).

The buildup of fluid in the interstitial spaces along with the osmolytic properties of lactate creates an extra-cellular pressure gradient, which in turn causes a rush of plasma back into the muscle. The net result is that blood pools in your muscles, causing them to swell. Researchers refer to the pump as cell swelling.

The pump leads to greater intracellular hydration. There is compelling evidence that a hydrated cell causes an increase in anabolism (muscle growth) and a decrease in protein breakdown.  A muscle building home run.

Why cant I train a muscle everyday?

In the gym you stimulate muscles to grow , but they actually grow during rest.  The fastest way to make results is to train a muscle, let it recover then hit it again as soon as possible. The body wants to remain  in homeostasis ,  if you do not give it a c continual reason to build muscle it will just remain the same.

 How do I build bicep peak?

Bicep peak is primarily determined by the development of the long head of the biceps . Your goal should be to develop that head by emphasizing it in exercise. This is possible because the long head crosses the scapula while the short head doesn’t.

Using that knowledge we know  best movement for bicep peak (the long head ) is the incline dumbbell curl because it places the long head in a stretched position so the body recruits it over the short head .


How do I Build Big Shoulders?

First off hit all three heads adequately.  A lot of guys let their medial or posterior head slack.

Focus on contraction and feeling in the muscle , not just moving the weight a to b which takes tension off the delts , and often places it on the joints or surrounding muscles.

Perform the following exercises in strict form and increase the load  as often as possible without sacrificing form.

Lateral Head : Dumbbell lateral raises or cable lateral raises or incline bench lateral raises.

Posterior head:  Dumbell Bent over lateral raises  , lying lateral raises ,  bent over  cable lateral raises.

Anterior head:  barbell front or behind the neck press, Arnold press, front raise

When you train the lateral delt internally rotate your humerus (upper arm) so that your pinky is on top. This places the medial head In a position best to oppose gravity and thus it’ll be recruited better

 

I bench a lot , why is my chest not growing? Why can’t I feel my chest during the bench press?

Bench press with a grip YOU feel your chest working,  AND ALSO USE dumbbell flys , dumbbell presses , machine flys ect . Remember your chest has 3 functions.

Humerus Adduction  being the most important for growth.  Which is bringing your arms across your body to the front , like a bear hug.

It also controls internal rotation which can benefit advanced lifters and aids in  shoulder flexion ( raising your arm like a front dumbbell raise )  which has no real training implications.

Your chest can be divided into 3 sections , upper middle and lower. It is divided  into these sections because it has  two heads , the clavicle and sternal head. The  muscle fibers within the clavicle head also run differently. This is why doing presses and flys at various angles, flat ,decline , Incline ect is  essential in developing a big chest . I also  recommend include pullovers in your chest training.

I am a complete beginner, can I get a quick summary to start off in the right direction?

Hit the compounds in 6-8 and isolation movements  8-12 rep schemes . Pick a weight somewhere in there and once you hit 8 or 12 reps  increase the resistance.  After a while change the reps around , just don’t get caught up in maxing out until your experienced or you can injure yourself.

Remember your goal is to provide  increased resistance  so your body continually adapt and grows.  Use correct form to place maximum tension on the target muscle.

Pull ups , Dips, deadlifts and Squats are your best friends.  Bench, rows   and  Overhead press   your  good friends along with  curls and tricep extensions.

Consider full body training  , it  works great for beginners and requires only 3 days a week for excellent results.

On your abs  breath out when you contract them on any exercise , they can’t full contract completely  with air. That should make you feel them twice as good the first workout.  There’s a million  ab exercises to choose from , see which one suits you best. And that is the same for any body part.

If your goal is to build a big chest but you rely on bench because  everyone said it’s the best but YOU don’t feel your chest working then change the parameters until you do. You should feel your target muscle working the first few sets every session , no exceptions . You are trying to build muscle not just move the weight from A to B

 

Reading this will also give you a good idea on basic exercise selection

 

Why are supplements helpful? Are they drugs?

Drugs work outside the body , have side effects and once you stop taking them  you lose most of the gains becuase the body returns to normal levels.

Supplements such as whey protein work with the body and are naturally found in foods we already consume.

More specifically Whey(protein) is left over when milk is coagulated during the process of cheese production, and contains everything that is soluble from milk.  It’s  demand and price jumped dramatically when it’s uses in athletics rose.

Other supplements such as a potent  Multivitamin,, Creatine and Beta  Alanine work with the body, are very cheap in their purest form, and have been proven effective in studies . A great website for researching supplements is www.examine.com 

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