Archive | December, 2016

How To Get Big Arms – 3 Super-Size Tips For Bigger Guns

Ask most guys what their muscle building goals are and more than likely a large number will tell you they are aiming to get bigger arms. Big arms have always and will always be a firm testament to strength and power, and nothing is more impressive than a set of bulging biceps that look ready to burst out of your shirt sleeves.

However, the key to discovering how to get big arms is in understanding that the training method is as important as what exercises you actually perform.

Of course it shouldn’t need to be said that proper diet and nutrition are essential to see sustained and fast muscle growth in your arms, as in the rest of your body, however in this article I’m going to show you 3 workout tips that you should follow if you’re trying to get big arm muscles.

Heavy Weight Sets

The secret to bigger muscle growth is in lifting heavy…however, performing heavy sets at the beginning of your workout can really help to speed things up and get your arms bigger in less time.

Most folks will spend a long time doing high rep numbers on various exercises at the beginning of the workout and leave the heavy lifting until the end.

The problem with this approach is you spend too much time and energy “warming up” that by the time you get to the good stuff (heavy lifting) you’ve not got the juice left to push your muscles to the next level. Lots of reps may give you a great feeling of “being pumped”, but it is not doing much to help you get bigger guns.

Warm up well at the start of your workout with stretching, jogging and push ups, but get into the meat of the workout as soon as possible if you want to get big arms.

Supersets

Typically for fast muscle growth you’ll want to stick to compound multi-joint movements for optimum gains in strength and muscle mass.

However, in order to get big arms it is definitely worth adding some “supersets” of isolation exercises after the heavy lifting.

Supersets are basically two sets of exercises performed one after the other with no rest in between. Typically, in the case of building bigger arm muscles, you should perform a bicep exercise followed by a tricep exercise to maximize the whole development of the arm.

Supersets will increase your arm strength and muscular endurance as well as giving you that great “muscle pump” feeling.

Train 3 Times Per Week

The secret to long-term muscle gain is consistent training. However, many folks make the mistake of performing split workouts where each day is devoted to a different body part. In the end they end up spending around 6 days per week down the gym.

This is not my favoured approach for two reasons:

  • Each body part tends to only get worked out intensely once per week
  • Certain muscle groups are being over-trained

If you’re looking at how to get big arms, then you should look to work them out 3 times per week, making sure you get at least one full day’s rest in between each session.

This training frequency will allow the maximum intensity and effort applied to the muscles while permitting the necessary rest and recovery time for growth.

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Increase Height Naturally – How to Do it After 20 Or Even 25

Ever wanted to be taller? Do you know that even at the age of 25, you can still grow taller? What makes it even better is that you can do it naturally and safely. Here, several tips and exercises will be given to gain height regardless of age.

There are a lot of ways to increase height naturally. Increasing the levels of growth hormones in the body is one of the most important things. And if you are a teenager, you need not worry about this because it is at this point that you produce growth hormones in large quantities and automatically.

For those aged above 20 on the other hand will need to force the production of their growth hormone. One great way to do this is through stretching exercises. Stretching is very essential in increasing height naturally since stretching produces lactate which is an important factor in making the production of the growth hormone active.

When the growth hormone levels of the body are increase, this will make the body’s cartilages thicker and the density levels of the bone which results to height gain. Combining a right diet and the stretching exercises will even be more effective. Eating right will help strengthen your bones which can help in lengthening your bones. The foods that are useful in increasing height are fiber rich foods like wheat brans, wheat, rice, oats and the like.

Among these foods, the other foods that are beneficial in growing taller are vegetables such as, spinach, carrots, salad greens, and broccoli. Steamed fish and citrus fruits are also helpful. While these food promote height gain, you will need to avoid foods that are high in fats and sweets. Also lessen your alcohol and coffee intakes.

On top of the stretching exercises, yoga is also a type of exercise that promotes height gain. It promotes balance and flexibility at the same time releases the strain and tension on the back and the spine which helps in making the cartilage of your body thicker and the muscles stronger. Yoga is also useful in promoting good posture which stretches the spine.

The different yoga positions that can help in increasing one’s height are Tarhasana, Sheershasana and the Matsyasana. And one thing that you should always keep in mind to be taller is by getting enough rest as this allows your body to promote the growth hormone appropriately. Studies have shown that larger quantities of growth hormone are produced while sleeping.

It would be better to sleep longer than the usual to help stimulate and increase the production of the growth hormones in your body. Before anything else or before you try these exercises out to increase your height naturally, it is best that you consult your doctor first to make sure that you are healthy enough to do so. With the proper discipline and persistence and these exercises, gaining height will be very easy.

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Ayurveda Beauty Tips For Fatty Deposits in The Eyelids – A Sign Of Impaired Fat Metabolism

Fatty deposits in the eyelids just don’t look good. Fat is thick, oily, slimy and dense. Fat is found under the skin between the muscles, and in all the familiar places that we loathe it to be.

And fat is found behind the eyeballs in a place that is very helpful to us, unless it is in excess.

If you have fatty deposits in your eyelids you might also have excess thirst, slow metabolism, water retention, and love to sit and read or maybe even love to sleep a lot.

You can be skinny and have fatty deposits in your eyelids ,also? too skinny is a fat metabolism imbalance, also.

Do you ever get burning feet or hands? Or do you get multiple boils? These are real blocks to your beauty and are also health problems. These symptoms are related to fatty deposits in the eyelids and other places.

The first step to eliminating the ill effect of fatty deposits in your eyelids is to recognize them as a part of an extended health imbalance. Understand that it is related to your heart, liver and possibly your thyroid.

You can do a test in Ayurveda to measure your fat to find out if your fat metabolism is impaired. Measure the width of skin around the belly, breast, buttocks and hips with a common sewing tape measure. Do this daily. Do this weekly and compare. You will begin to see your body’s metabolism pattern.

Check your weight before eating. Eat your average meal. If you gain a half pound or more one hour after meal this is an indicator that you have a slow metabolism.

If you have fatty deposits in your eyelids, Ayurveda recommends for your daily beauty practice a specific diet.

Avoid salt, alcohol, red meat, hard cheeses, and, of course, fatty or fried foods.

The following herbs are the Ayurvedic recommendations for restoring good fat metabolism. But, please consult an Ayurvedic professional if you decide to use them; in Ayurveda every body is different and you need expert advice as to how to apply them to your unique needs. Trikatu, cumin, coriander and fennel are excellent for restoring healthy fat metabolism. If you cook with them regularly they are like a miracle for a person with fatty deposits and obesity.

Ayurveda recommends as a daily chant: “Exercise,Exercise, Exercise.” This is the mantra for the person who has this beauty issue. Also recommended is the breathing exercise known as the lion, in which you open your mouth like a lion, roars and breathe out ,stick your tongue out and shout out. The other breathing type is Bhastrika which is forceful exhalation and inhalation.

Emotional stress is a direct link to fat. The neuro-emotional science explaining stress and fat metabolism in the body has been mapped. So, there is not a discussion as to whether this is true or not. You could spend the next five years reading all the material already on the subject in modern science today. Just be aware of your need to exercise, eat spicy foods, light foods and do the breathing exercises I have mentioned. Fatty deposits in your eyelids are definitely a beauty challenge and it is a wake up call about the health of your fat metabolism.

The body types Ayurveda zeroes in on if you have fatty deposits in eyelids are KaphaVata, KaphaPitta, and predominate Kapha, and Vata body types if their fat metabolism is imbalanced are also affected.

Dr. Helen Thomas © 2008

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Making Ketogenic Diets Work

The Truth

Ketogenic Diets (more specifically Cyclic Ketogenic Diets) are the most effective diets for achieving rapid, ultra low bodyfat levels with maximum muscle retention! Now, as with all such general statements there are circumstantial exceptions. But done right – which they rarely are – the fat loss achievable on a ketogenic diet is nothing short of staggering! And, despite what people might tell you, you will also enjoy incredible high energy and overall sense of well being.

The Perception

Despite these promises, more bodybuilders/shapers have had negative experiences than have seen positive results. The main criticisms are:

  • Chronic lethargy
  • Unbearable hunger
  • Massive decrease in gym performance
  • Severe muscle loss

All of these criticisms result from a failure to heed the caveat above: Ketogenic Diets must be done right! It must be realised that they are an entirely unique metabolic modality that adheres to none of the previously accepted ‘rules’ of dieting. And there is no going half-way; 50 grams of carbs per day plus high protein intake is NOT ketogenic!

So how are ketogenic diets ‘done right’? Lets quickly look at how they work.

Overview of Ketosis

Simply, our body, organs, muscles and brain can use either glucose or ketones for fuel. It is the function of the liver and pancreas (primarily) to regulate that fuel supply and they show a strong bias toward sticking with glucose. Glucose is the ‘preferred’ fuel because it is derived in abundance from the diet and readily available readily from liver and muscle stores. Ketones have to be deliberately synthesised by the liver; but the liver can easily synthesise glucose (a process known as ‘gluconeogenesis’ that uses amino acids (protein) or other metabolic intermediaries) too.

We don’t get beta hydroxybutyrate, acetone, or acetoacetate (ketones) from the diet. The liver synthesises them only under duress; as a last measure in conditions of severe glucose deprivation like starvation. For the liver to be convinced that ketones are the order of the day, several conditions must be met:

  • Blood glucose must fall below 50mg/dl
  • Low blood glucose must result in low Insulin and elevated Glucagon
  • Liver glycogen must be low or ’empty’
  • A plentiful supply of gluconeogenic substrates must NOT be available

At this point it is important to mention that it is not actually a question of being ‘in’ or ‘out’ of ketosis; we don’t either totally run on ketones, or not. It is a gradual and careful transition so that the brain is constantly and evenly fuelled… ideally. Ketones SHOULD be produced in small amounts from blood glucose levels of about 60mg/dl. We consider ourselves in ketosis when there are greater concentrations of ketones than glucose in the blood.

The reality is that most people – especially weight trainers – have had a regular intake of glucose for a good couple of decades, at least. The liver is perfectly capable of producing ketones but the highly efficient gluconeogenic pathways are able to maintain low-normal blood glucose above the ketogenic threshold.

Couple this with the fact that many people are at least partially insulin resistant and have elevated fasting insulin (upper end of the normal range, anyway). The small amount of blood glucose from gluconeogenesis induces sufficient insulin release to blunt glucagon output and the production of ketones.

Sudden glucose deprivation will have the consequence, initially, of lethargy, hunger, weakness etc in most people – until ketosis is achieved. And Ketosis will not be reached until the liver is forced to quit with gluconeogenesis and start producing ketones. As long as dietary protein is sufficient then the liver will continue to produce glucose and not ketones. That’s why no carb, high protein diets are NOT ketogenic.

Whats So Great About Ketosis Anyway?

When the body switches over to running primarily on ketones a number of very cool things happen:

  • Lipolysis (bodyfat breakdown) is substantially increased
  • Muscle catabolism (muscle loss) is substantially reduced
  • Energy levels are maintained in a high and stable state
  • Subcutaneous fluid (aka ‘water retention’) is eliminated

Basically, when we are in ketosis our body is using fat (ketones) to fuel everything. As such, we aren’t breaking down muscle to provide glucose. That is, muscle is being spared because it has nothing to offer; fat is all the body needs (well, to a large extent). For the dieter this means substantially less muscle loss than what is achievable on any other diet. Make sense?

As a bonus, ketones yield only 7 calories per gram. This is higher than the equal mass of glucose but substantially less (22%, in fact) than the 9 calorie gram of fat from whence it came. We like metabolic inefficiencies like this. They mean we can eat more but the body doesn’t get the calories.

Even cooler is that ketones cannot be turned back into fatty acids; the body excretes any excess in the urine! Speaking of which, there will be quite a bit of urine; the drop in muscle glycogen, low Insulin and low aldosterone all equate to massive excretion of intra and extracellular fluid. For us that means hard, defined muscularity and quick, visible results.

Regarding energy, our brain actually REALLY likes ketones so we tend to feel fantastic in ketosis – clear headed, alert and positive. And because there is never a shortage of fat to supply ketones, energy is high all the time. Usually you even sleep less and wake feeling more refreshed when in ketosis.

Doing it Right

From whats said above you will realise that to get into ketosis:

  • Carbohydrate intake should be nil; Zero!
  • Protein intake should be low – 25% of calories at a maximum
  • Fat must account for 75%+ of calories

With low insulin (due to zero carbs) and calories at, or below maintenance, the dietary fat cannot be deposited in adipose tissues. The low-ish protein means that gluconeogenesis will quickly prove inadequate to maintain blood glucose and, whether the body likes it or not, there is still all the damned fat to burn.

And burn it does. The high dietary fat is oxidised for cellular energy in the normal fashion but winds up generating quantities of Acetyl-CoA that exceed the capacity of the TCA cycle. The significant result is ketogenesis – synthesis of ketones from the excess Acetyl-CoA. In more lay terms: the high fat intake ”forces” ketosis upon the body. This is how its ‘done right’.

Now you just have to throw out what you thought was true about fats. Firstly, fat does not ”make you fat”. Most of the information about the evils of saturated fats, in particular, is so disproportionate or plain wrong anyway; on a ketogenic diet it is doubly inapplicable. Saturated fats make ketosis fly. And don”t worry; your heart will be better than fine and your insulin sensitivity will NOT be reduced (there is no insulin around in the first place)!

Once in ketosis it is not necessary, technically speaking, to maintain absolute zero carbs or low protein. But it is still better if you want to reap the greatest rewards. Besides, assuming you are training hard, you will still want to follow a cyclic ketogenic diet where you get to eat all your carbs, fruit and whatever else, every 1-2 weeks, anyway (more on this in another article).

Don’t be mistaken; ‘done right’ does not make ketogenic dieting easy or fun for the culinary acrobats among you. They are probably the most restrictive diets you can use and not an option if you don’t love animal products. Get out your nutritional almanac and work out an 20:0:80 protein:carb:fat diet. Yeah, its boring. As an example, your writers daily ketogenic diet is 3100 Calories at 25:0.5:74.5 from only:

10 xxl Whole Eggs

160ml Pure Cream (40% fat)

400g Mince (15% fat)

60ml Flaxseed Oil

30g Whey Protein Isolate

Supplementation?

There are a number of supplements that assist in making Ketogenic diets more effective. However, many popular supplements would be wasted. Here is an overview of the main ones:

  • Chromium and ALA, while not insulin ‘mimickers’ as many claim, increase insulin sensitivity resulting in lower insulin levels, higher glucagon and a faster descent into deeper ketosis
  • creatine is a bit of a waste – at most, 30% can be taken up by the muscles that, without glycogen, cannot be meaningfully ‘volumised’.
  • HMB (if it works) would/should be an excellent supplement for minimising the catabolic period before ketosis is achieved
  • Tribulus is excellent and comes highly recommended as it magnifies the increased testosterone output of a ketogenic diet
  • Carnitine in L or Acetyl-L form is an almost essential supplement for Ketogenic Diets. L-Carnitine is necessary for the formation of Ketones in the liver.
  • Glutamine, free-form essential and branched-chain aminos are worthwhile for pre and post training. Just don’t overdo the glutamine as it supports gluconeogenesis
  • ECA stack fat burners are very useful and important though don”t worry about the inclusion of HCA
  • Flaxseed oil is a great but do not think that you need 50% of your calories from essential fatty acids. 1-10% of calories is more than sufficient.
  • Whey Protein is optional – you don’t want too much protein remember
  • A soluble fibre supplement that is non-carbohydrate based is good. But walnuts are easier.

Conclusion

Ketogenic diets offer a host of unique benefits that cannot be ignored if you are chasing the ultimate, low bodyfat figure or physique. However, they are not the most user friendly of diets and any ‘middle ground’ compromise you might prefer will be just the worst of all worlds. Your choice is to do them right or not at all.

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Workout Without Weights – A Special Forces Workout For a Strong and Compact Physique

I’d like to share a cool conditioning workout that I came up with a few months ago in order to get stronger and better conditioned in a short period of time. It incorporates the concept of “Ladders” found in Pavel Tstatsouline’s book “Power to the People,” In this book Pavel shares the training secrets of the Soviet commandos and athletes he used to train with that allowed the Russians to dominate other countries in the Olympics. This is really popular in the Marines and SEALS, and we use this type of training to get really high pure strength and strength endurance levels while still keeping up our long distance running.

What are ladders?

Basically you will pick an exercise and start at the “bottom” of the ladder doing anywhere from 1-5 reps. You will rest the same number of seconds as reps per set. So if I start doing 2 push ups, I would rest 2 seconds, do 4 push ups, rest 4 seconds etc until I reached a specified number. You want to try to do as many reps as possible without going to failure. This is different from a pyramid set in that you stop at the top of ladder in this workout, but I a pyramid set you will go up AND down. This is great for building muscle, but not for strength or muscle definition. Ladders are an excellent tool that can be applied to almost any workout plan. I absolutely love them.

My “Special Forces” workout Finisher

You will need access to a pull-up bar. You will be doing 3 “ladder super sets” of push-ups and pull-ups. This means you will complete one push-up ladder and then immediately transition to pull-ups without rest. After this “super set” (performing 2 exercises back to back), you will take 30-60 sec rest and then repeat at least 2 more times. Focus on getting perfect reps at a medium pace and stop before you feel like you can’t do anymore. If I’m getting guys ready for the Marines or SEALS we will do the push up ladders from 2 reps to 14 reps going up by 2 reps at a time, and we do pull-ups from 1 rep to 7 reps going up by 1 rep at a time, and repeat this cycle 4 times. We do this as a bad ass finisher to a long ruck march or run pretty regularly and a lot of guys can max out at least 100 push-ups and 20 pull-ups for our PT tests.

Why this type of training builds a hard and “compact” physique

I love this workout because it combines a few key training principles into a single session. The ladder principle builds strength, stamina, and conditioning since a high volume of reps is accumulated in a short period of time, but your muscles don’t get “pumped” because of the rest periods. By super setting pushing with pulling exercises I took advantage of making opposing muscle groups help each other out. Basically alternating pushing with pulling gives each muscle group a rest while at the same time telling the central nervous system to start connecting the neurons that fire the individual muscle fibers. Essentially doing pull-ups will start to help doing pull-ups and vice versa. Pretty cool! The more you compress the time frame of the workout, the more you will release fat burning hormones to make it a conditioning workout as well.

How I used this training method to double my regular pull-ups and master the One arm Pull-up

After doing this workout for the past 6 months I’ve increased my pull-up max from 20 to 40 reps, and push ups from 100 to 135 in 2 min. I also think it helped me to achieve one arm pull-ups, which I just mastered about a week ago(and which I’ll do a post on soon!). Doing this type of high volume, low rep training with perfect form has similar effects to a power-lifting cycle. In fact, a ladder workout is basically an entire power lifting cycle compressed into a few minutes! The really cool thing is that I never feel sore any more from doing burnout sets, but my strength and conditioning level is still improving.

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Michael Jackson Suffered Panic Attacks

Legendary musician Michael Jackson, who has sadly passed away age 50, was well known for suffering several confirmed health problems as well as some rumored ailments. In 1984 he suffered burns whilst filming a Pepsi commercial and had to have major surgery on his scalp. He suffered intense pain and this is when it was thought he became addicted to painkillers. He is reported to have several skin disorders including lupus.

In 1993, Jackson’s dermatologist, Arnold Klein, released a statement saying Jackson had a rare skin disease called vitiligo. This causes the sufferer to lose melanin. Jackson was also hospitalized with chest pain in 1990. A concert tour was cut short in November 1993 because of an addiction to prescription painkillers.

In 1995, Jackson was rushed to a hospital after collapsing during rehearsals for a televised performance; the incident was reportedly caused by a stress related panic attack. Another time, The National Enquirer reported that Michael Jackson was so stricken with panic attacks that at the MTV video awards, he almost did not go on stage to collect an award from Britney Spears. In 2005, Jackson went to a hospital for treatment of what his spokeswoman said was recurring back pain. More rumors emerged in May 2009 that Jackson had skin cancer.

Michael Jackson has admitted he had a troubled childhood, his father admitted he whipped him for minor offenses like missing a note. During one interview, Michael reported that he became emotional and vomited before meeting his father. In court documents, mental health experts had the opinion that Jackson was psychologically a regressed 10 yr old.

It seems clear that Michael Jackson was suffering serious mental health issues as well as addictions to several drugs. Autopsy has recently confirmed that some of the drugs in his body at the time of his death were anxiety medication. Hopefully we can learn from his experience and take action before things become overwhelming and out of control. God bless him and his family.

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Ways To Remain Dedicated To Your Yoga Practice

When we make resolutions or set our goals, we do so with the best intentions. After setting our goals, the next task for us is to keep them. Most times, we find it very difficult to stand up from our bed and start practicing. When you consider waking up to the cold outside and the comfort your bed, you might get tempted to skip practice sometimes. However, when you discover that the newness of your resolve has worn off and you started skipping practice often, how do you remain motivated and dedicated to your course?

The good thing everyone should understand is that it takes a very long time to form a new habit and skipping practice for a day does not mean that you have failed. What it means is that it is time for you to renew your commitment and get back on your mat quickly.

Let us take a look at some tips that will help you stay dedicated to your yoga practice.

1. Self-reflection

The first thing you need to do is to ask yourself what really keeps you coming back to your yoga mat. You can also write down the things that motivates you and post them in a place where you do your practice. Ensure that you put it in a place where you can see them daily. On a constant basis, re-evaluate your list. Maintain those practices that keep you motivated and let go of those that no longer serve you.

2. Daily readings

Doing short reading at the start of practice can help you set the tone for your practice and prepare you for either yoga asana or meditation. In addition, it can also help you to set the tone for your day or help you in the evening to wind down. Reading will give you some reminder of your goal as well as connect you to the wider yoga community.

3. Inspirational messages

It is very important to know that listening to inspirational messages throughout the day, which could be short, can help to keep you focused on your goal, and give you an added boost, especially when you may face the temptation of skipping practice.

4. Sign up for some challenge

You can sign up for a yoga challenge. It could be two weeks or one month long.

5. Try social media

Social media can also be a great place to find support as well as inspiration. There are many yogis out there, who are looking for consistently talking about their journey and looking for means to connect with other people like them, in order to share ideas.

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Where Can I Find Alkaline Diet Recipes?

When you first discover the alkaline diet and its many benefits – from great levels of energy and vitality to its anti-aging properties, great digestion, disease prevention and a general uplift in health – the natural question is “Where can I find alkaline diet recipes?”

The refreshing answer is that many recipes and meals that you already know and enjoy can be made more alkaline by making some simple substitutions of foods that are alkaline.

Following the alkaline diet means swapping acidic foods like meat, dairy, refined sugars and fats and other processed foods for alkaline foods such as vegetables, leafy greens, some fruits and nuts and seeds.

So for example, you can make an alkaline version of spaghetti Bolognese by swapping the minced beef for brown lentils, swapping the jar of processed Bolognese tomato sauce for a home-made version containing tomatoes, herbs and spices, some flax oil, onions and a few other unprocessed, natural ingredients blended together and swapping the durum wheat spaghetti for raw courgette noodles made with a vegetable specialize.

Another fantastic alkaline diet recipe that is so good it’s hard to believe it’s healthy for you is alkaline banana ice cream: You simply take a bunch of over-ripe bananas, peel them, cut them up into chunks and freeze them. Then when you want to eat the ice cream, take 10 or so of the frozen chunks, blend them in your high-speed blender with a little coconut or almond milk and a teaspoon of mica (a calciferous root vegetable super-food that tastes a little malt-like) if you wish. You could also add some vanilla extract or lucuma powder (custard-tasting super food) to make it more ‘creamy’. Simple, healthy, delicious! It’s truly hard to believe that this ice cream recipe has no dairy in it and the consistency is just like proper ice cream.

A question that is asked a lot is whether or not fruits are alkaline. The simple answer is that it depends: As long as fruits are eaten alone, before any other slower-digesting foods and in the context of an overall vegetable-based diet, then they complement this and help to alkalize your body. If they are not combined properly then they can ferment and cause acidification. So it’s good to inform yourself about optimum food combining protocols.

A good rule of thumb for making recipes alkaline is to keep them as unprocessed as possible – raw, natural ingredients are best – and by substituting meat and dairy products for vegetables and beans, pulses and nuts and seeds.

Some simple swaps you can easily make alkalize your diet and body: Coconut milk for dairy milk; steamed vegetables for rice, pasta and bread; pulses for meat; fruits for refined sugar products; water and herbal teas for coffee, soda and alcohol.

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How to Get a Beach Body – Upper Body Workout For Skinny Guys to Get a Ripped Beach Body

While the days of kicking sand in a skinny guy’s face may have long gone, the fear and apprehension that we get from taking our shirts off on a busy beach are still very much here, so figuring out how to get a beach body is a major skinny guy question.

Let’s face it, the beach is the ultimate stage…there’s no hiding anywhere, so looking at your best is seriously important. And you know, that’s where girls go to look for guys, so you might as well be the one to stand out.

For skinny guys, the most important area to build muscle on is the upper body as this is the most noticeable, and tends to be where your bones stick out the most (my collar bones were my own personal nightmare!)

Here is a great upper body workout that will show you how to get a beach body fast – expect major gains within weeks.

How To Get A Beach Body Skinny Guy Workout – Upper Body

An ideal upper body workout for skinny guys will work on the 5 major muscle groups, and work each of them no more than 3 times per week, as rest is an essential part of muscle growth.

You need to make sure that you are lifting heavy weights – try to get a friend or gym partner who can spot you, as your final reps should be almost impossible to do. The rep numbers I’ve given are just a guide – if you can only manage 6 on your last set, don’t worry.

Make sure you always warm up and cool down sufficiently and stretch to avoid injury.

Chest

Chest Press – this is the ultimate chest and upper body compound exercise when thinking how to get a beach body…expect massive growth and size from this one. You can also add some variety some days by inclining the bench to build your upper pec muscles (these were great for hiding my collar bones that I mentioned earlier)

Perform 3 sets of 8-12 reps

Back

Bent Over Barbell Rows – these can also be performed with dumbbells instead of a barbell. Make sure you don’t curl you back on this; keep your abs tight and focus all the movement on your upper back muscles.

Perform 3 sets of 8-12 reps

Close Grip Chin-Ups can be performed instead if you don’t have access to a gym.

Shoulders

Seated Dumbbell Shoulder Press – these are fantastic for building big shoulders and trapezius muscles (those that join your neck and your shoulders), and will help you to get a beach body fast.

Focus on utilizing your shoulder muscles and avoid “cheating” by using your lower back muscles – that will only serve to cause you injury.

Perform 3 sets of 8-12 reps

Biceps

Standing Barbell Curls – like the bench press, this is probably one of the most famous exercises in any gym, and a real game-changer when thinking about how to get a beach body. Grab the bar in an underhand grip and lift by “squeezing” the biceps. Don’t rock backwards and forwards like most guys do – it doesn’t help you to build muscle quickly and can cause you injury.

Perform 3 sets of 8-12 reps

Triceps

Dips – these can be performed with your heels on the ground or raised on a bench (the higher they are the more difficult the exercise).

Perform 3 sets of 8-12 reps

(If you have any wrist problems – try performing Tricep Press Downs instead, using an overhand grip on a cable machine at the gym)

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Menopause, Bloating, Hot Flashes – And Now Acne!

If you`re suffering from acne AND menopause, you have my sympathies.

Menopause can cause a dip in confidence at the best of times. Your body starts behaving in ways that you never expected or experienced before – hot sweats, bloating, incontinence! Which is enough to knock anyone sideways. But then you look in the mirror one morning and you can see the first signs of a breakout. I don`t mean a few harmless pimples here and there, but blackheads, whiteheads and small pustules. The type where your skin looks like a ripe tomato and a new blemish seems to pops up every couple of minutes. I can tell you that it`s a horrible experience.

Your first response may be to rush out and buy the strongest medication that you can lay your hands on, and if you have really bad acne, that may be necessary, but before you do that why not try to control your breakout without visiting the pharmacist.

Acne affects menopausal women more than you may imagine, in fact it`s quite a common problem. And unlike teenagers, who are warned about the dangers of eating sweet, greasy foods, for us older ladies, things are not quite so simple.

As with almost all menopausal symptoms, it`s those pesky hormones estrogen, testosterone and progesterone that are mainly responsible for our less than perfect complexion. They fluctuate greatly as our body goes through the menopausal changes and consequently, we experience all of the associated menopause symptoms.

I was fortunate, in that I had worked in the cosmetic industry for many years and so my skin care routine was impeccable. I had always insisted on natural products, with no added color or fragrance (and animal friendly), that may cause an allergic reaction. I drank plenty of water and never went to bed without removing every last trace of make up. As I got older, I changed only my moisturizer and made sure that it was rich enough to nourish my skin, but did not clog the pores. I also exfoliated weekly without fail, which many women do not do, but which does make a big difference as the dead skin cells do not slough off as efficiently on mature skins. This not only makes the skin look dull, but the dead skin cells will block the pores and cause spots.

It is a not true to say that acne is caused because people fail to wash their faces often enough. Too much cleansing or scrubbing the skin harshly can make acne worse.. The best way to cleanse the face is to gently wash it twice daily using a mild cleanser. Be careful to remove make-up without harsh scrubbing.

If you do find yourself in the grip of menopausal acne, don`t be tempted to buy the strongest cleanser possible and literally try to dry out every last bit of oil on your skin – as this would be counter productive and leave you with flaky skin which still had pimples. Cleaning away all of the surface oils doesn’t help menopausal acne, as it starts under the skin

Of course, it goes without saying, that no matter how tempting, don’t pick or squeeze your spots because you can cause infection and the skin will certainly become red. By stressing and being self-conscious, you will only draw attention to yourself and stress can, in fact also trigger an acne breakout. Worrying and fretting about your face, affects your hormones and will not help your emotional state – or your skin.

In time, the acne will improve and eventually disappear completely. But in the meantime – apart from trying to maintain a sense of humor – here are a few other suggestions to help combat menopausal acne.

* Practice relaxation techniques

* Drink plenty of water

* Use gentle products that won`t aggravate your skin

* Speak to your doctor about stopping hormone replacement therapy if you think it is the cause of your acne

* GENTLY exfoliate twice a week

* Exercise will get the blood pumping, increase your oxygen intake – and help improve your complexion.

….And did I mention retaining a sense of humor always helps?

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