Myths of Bodybuilding – Part 3

1. There are food supplements available that are just as effective as steroids, yet safer

The only things as effective as steroids are other steroids. Despite the proclamations of some supplement distributors, usually in giant, 35-point type, no currently available supplement works like steroids. However, good quality nutrients and supplements can be extremely effective, especially if your diet is lacking in some critical component or you’re genetically predisposed to accept that nutrient or supplement. Biochemically, individuals vary enormously, and the interaction of genetics, coupled with the widely varying diets that each of us eats, makes it virtually impossible to gauge just what will work for one individual and what won’t. That is why some supplements work better than others for some people. If you have a good balanced diet you don’t need supplements. Generally, people mostly buy protein supplements, and neglect most important ones – vitamins and minerals. Food supplements do have benefits that can’t be overlooked – they’re generally safe, and they won’t get you thrown in jail. But none of them build muscle as fast or as well as steroids, it is actually incomparable.

2. Professional bodybuilders represent the epitome of health and fitness

The ultimate irony is that the IFBB is facing in trying to get bodybuilders into the Olympics is that while every athlete in every other sport is presumably the healthiest they’ve ever been so that they are able to compete athletically and break records, the bodybuilder is so weak on competition day that he or she would have trouble fending off the attacks of an enraged toy poodle. The weeks of constant dieting, workouts that continually tax the body almost beyond recovery, and a constant influx of potentially harmful drugs and diuretics have brought most of them to total exhaustion. And think about the huge amounts of food most steroid-using bodybuilders eat. In all the longevity sites in the world where people routinely live to be one hundred, the only common denominator is that they all either under-eat or eat just enough to meet their daily caloric requirements. By ingesting less food, they ingest less harmful chemicals, and fewer free radicals are formed in the body. The average professional builder probably eats at least four or five times what these aforementioned people eat. As a result, bodybuilders often suffer from high cholesterol and high blood pressure. Plus, with all that extra mass, the heart has to work that much harder and will probably stop beating years before it was designed to. That’s why professional bodybuilding is the ultimate act of vanity. It was done strictly to fulfill some misguided notion of the superhuman ideal, and health was not even a consideration. Almost without exception, these guys are not healthy, and they’ll probably be among the first to tell you so. However, weight-training and consuming a nutrient-rich diet is very healthy, as long as it is not carried to extremes. Although lifting weights is a great component of every strength based sport, and Powerlifting, Strongman, and Olympic lifting are great competitive sports, Bodybuilding is more and more like genetic and drug game.

3. Training with weights causes your muscles to get tight and hinders flexibility and, consequently, athletic performance

If anything, when done properly (using a complete range of motion), weight training increases flexibility. Many athletes now engage in weight training in order to improve their performance in their chosen sport – boxers, MMA fighters, track athletes, football players, basketball players, gymnasts; the list goes on and on. This lie might have been fueled by the feeling of ‘tightness’ that accompanies an intense workout. If the workout was intense and a sufficient number of muscle fibers were recruited and microscopically damaged, then even the normal tonus (the normal amount of contraction experienced by a relaxed muscle) is more than enough to cause a feeling of pain and tightness. The tightness is compounded by the ‘tugging’ of the tendons on the muscles. Stretching, however, would do much to alleviate this tightness, and stretching is a recommended part of any athletic pursuit. The only possible confirmation of this lie concerns a baseball pitcher’s arm. An intense weight training programme might affect a pitcher’s ability to throw a fastball, but it wouldn’t be because of a lack of flexibility. The speed a pitcher can generate seems to be determined more by a complex relationship of tendon length and strength and nervous system efficiency as opposed to muscular strength, and weight training could, possibly, upset this delicate balance.

4. Loading up on carbohydrates is an excellent way to enhance your athletic performance

The traditional manner in which athletes “carb up” for an athletic competition usually involves first depleting the body’s stores of carbohydrates through exercise and diet. This is then followed by rest and a high carbohydrate intake. However, studies have shown that this type of preparation is unnecessary. An athlete who eats a balanced, high-carbohydrate diet and is in reasonably good shape has plenty of carbohydrates in his or her system to meet the demands of short-duration exercises that don’t exceed roughly one hour. Anyone that does exercises that last more than an hour, like long-distance running or cycling, may benefit from “carbing up”, but the ability of muscles to use fat as a source of energy rather than carbohydrates in endurance events may be even more important to performance at that level.

5.  Consuming foods high in sugar before training provides your body with extra energy to sustain workouts

Simple sugars like sucrose don’t need to be broken down by the body’s enzymes to be used as energy like complex carbohydrates do. Therefore, they elicit a rapid release of insulin, the hormone that regulates blood-sugar levels. The trouble is, the sudden, rapid influx of sugar into the system causes the body to release insulin in what must be considered a haphazard method, ie. the amount released is usually more than what’s needed to metabolize the sugar. Consequently, your blood sugar often temporarily drops to a point that is actually lower than it was before you had the sugar, which might cause you to become more exhausted much earlier than it normally would. Your body is then forced to dip into its glycogen reserves in order to correct the imbalance. To ensure that you have enough energy to complete a workout, eat nutrient-rich foods with low glycemic indices (those that elicit a smooth, steady stream of sugar into the bloodstream) like barley, lentils or beans.

6.  If you stop working out, your muscle will turn into fat

This is almost too preposterous to address. Muscle can no sooner turn to fat than gold can turn into lead. Muscle is made up of individual cells – living, “breathing” cells that undergo all kinds of complex metabolic processes. Fat cells are simply storage packets of lipids. The possibility of one changing into another is akin to the bowling ball in your storage closet turning into your aunt Edna. If you stop working out, if you stop applying resistance to your muscles on a consistent basis, they will simply adapt to the new condition. In other words, they’ll shrink. If the degree of inactivity or immobilization is severe, the muscles will shrink faster than the surrounding skin, and a temporary condition of loose skin might be experienced, but that too would remedy itself with time.

7. Ingesting MCT (medium-chain triglyceride) oils will give you tons of energy, but they won’t make you fat

MCTs first gained prominence for treating persons suffering from fat malabsorption, pancreatic deficiency, or stomach or esophageal diseases. Researchers found that MCTs, because of their better solubility and motility, underwent a rapid hydrolysis by salivary, gastric, and pancreatic enzymes. Consequently, they were able to reach the liver and provide energy much more quickly than long-chain triglycerides (Guillot, et al., 1993). There was also some evidence that MCTs reduced lipid deposition in fat stores compared with that resulting from LCTs under identical energy intake conditions. However, this is no reason to believe that ingesting these oils in excess will not result in a positive energy balance which the body stores as fat. MCTs, like regular oils, like regular fats, have nine calories per gram. Even though they are metabolized differently, using them in excessive amounts will add inches to your waistline.

8.  If everyone took the same amount of steroids, everyone would look like a professional bodybuilder

One of the ironies of steroid use is that some people are genetically “gifted” in terms of steroid receptors. That means that they have a large number of receptor sites in the muscles with which a particular steroid can combine and exert its mass-building effects. The man or woman who won the last contest might very well have the most active steroid receptors rather than being the most dedicated, knowledgeable bodybuilder. On the other hand, some people might possess very few receptors for a particular steroid. That’s why they experience very little, if any, growth on a particular steroid. Another factor that influences receptor affinity is age. The highest receptor affinity seems to occur in late teenage years. This is a generalization, but it seems to be true for a good number of people. Since there is a greater uptake in these individuals, they are often able to take lower dosages for longer periods of time and make better gains than older users. The truth is, two bodybuilders could take the same steroid stack (assuming that both are equally genetically gifted), train and eat the same, and one could turn out to be in the Olympia, and the other might never even win a local contest. The difference in how people react to these drugs is incredible.

9. Someone with a well-built body must be knowledgeable about fitness and physique development

Despite popular belief, just because some guy has 20″ (51cm) arms or 30″ (77cm) thighs, that does not automatically credential him as a bodybuilding expert. Unfortunately, in a society where looks count for so much, well-built lifters are often regarded as bodybuilding scientists. The unfortunate fact is, many well-built athletes, even pro bodybuilders, have no idea how they got where they are. Many of them are so genetically gifted and embellish their genetic potential even further by using tons of bodybuilding drugs that they actually succeed in spite of themselves. With few exceptions, elite bodybuilders are the last people in the world you want to turn to for bodybuilding advice if you’re genetically average like 98% of us. You’re more likely to find expert advice from someone who has “walked a mile in your shoes”.

Few reasons to grow your own organic vegetables

During the last decades, there has been a change towards mechanization and homogenization of farming, which uses pesticides, additives, herbicides, synthetic fertilizers and mass-production techniques. All this is clearly affecting mankind’s health, and new diseases are spreading rapidly amongst humans and animals.

The World Health Organization produces reports to show how the use of chemicals and other products on food, coupled with the manufacturing processes involved, are actually a threat to our health.

If you have space for a few pots or even a small piece of land, it is a wise decision to grow your own organic vegetable garden. Today I’m presenting you with seven reasons for doing this:

  • You will have no additives in your vegetables. Research by organic food associations has shown that additives in our food can cause heart diseases, osteoporosis, migraines, and hyperactivity.
  • There will be no pesticides or synthetic fertilizers used. These chemical products are applied to obtain crops all the time regardless of plagues or weather conditions and affect the quality of the vegetables. Besides, pesticides are usually poisonous to humans.
  • Your vegetables will not be genetically modified (GM). Antibiotics, drugs, and hormones are used on vegetables to grow more and larger ones. One of the consequences of this practice are vegetables which look all the same and are usually tasteless. Besides, we end up consuming the hormones that have been used on the vegetables, with the potential risks for our health.
  • Eating your own organic vegetables will be much more healthy for you. They will not contain any of the products or chemicals named above, and they will be much more natural than any ones you would find at the supermarket. Your health will not be at risk because you will then know that nothing has been added to your vegetables.
  • Your own organic vegetables will be much tastier. The use of pesticides, synthetic fertilizers, hormones, and antibiotics make vegetables grow unnaturally and take the taste away from them. With organic vegetables, your cooking will be enhanced as their flavor will show fully.
  • Organic farming is friendly to the environment. Because you won’t use pesticides or other equally harming products on your vegetables, you will not damage the soil or the air with the chemical components.
  • When you grow your own organic vegetables you are contributing to your own self-sustainability and the sustainability of the planet. Small communities have been founded where members exchange products that they grow naturally, thus contributing to create a friendly and better place for us all.

In the end, eating organic products only means that we do not add anything else to them than they would naturally have. As you can guess, additives, fertilizers, pesticides or hormones are not components of naturally grown food. To better care for your health, grow your own organic vegetables – and a few pots is all you need.

Myths of Pro Bodybuilding – Part 2

1. You should only rest 45 seconds in between sets

That’s true if you’re trying to improve cardiovascular health or lose some bodyfat. But in order to build muscle, you need to allow enough time for the muscle to recuperate fully (ie. let the lactic acid buildup in your muscles dissipate and ATP levels build back up). In order to make muscles grow, you have to lift the heaviest weight possible, thereby allowing the maximum number of muscle fibers to be recruited. If the amount of weight you lift is being limited by the amount of lactic acid left over from the previous set, you’re only testing your ability to battle the effects of lactic acid. In other words, you’re trying to swim across a pool while wearing concrete overshoes. When training heavy, take (at least!) two or three minutes between your sets. Notice I said, “when training heavy.” The truth is, you can’t train heavy all the time. Periodization calls for cycling heavy workouts with less intense training sessions in an effort to keep the body from becoming overtrained.

2. You have to use fancy weightlifting equipment in order to make the best gains

Futuristic-looking, complex machinery designed to give your muscles the “ultimate workout” is typically less effective than good-old barbells and dumbbells. Using simple free weights (barbells and dumbbells) on basic multi-joint exercises, like the squat, bench press, shoulder press, and deadlift, is still the most effective means of resistance exercise ever invented. Scientific research has shown that many exercise machines lack the proper eccentric component of an exercise that’s necessary to stimulate muscle tissue to remodel (grow).

3. Weight training makes you big; aerobic exercise cuts you up

Manipulations in your nutrient intake are the main factor in getting cut up, and how you do it doesn’t matter. If your daily caloric expenditure exceeds your daily caloric intake on a consistent basis, you will lose fat and get more cut. Aerobic exercise is generally meant to improve cardiovascular efficiency, but if you do it long enough, you will burn up calories and in the long run drop the fat. However, weightlifting can do the same thing, only better. Studies have shown that the body burns far more efficiently if exercise is performed at a moderate pace for periods longer than 20 minutes. (It generally takes that long for the glucose in the bloodstream to be “burned up”, causing the body to dip into glycogen reserves for its energy). Once the glycogen reserves are used up, the body must metabolize fatty acids for energy. That equate to lost bodyfat. In the long run, bodybuilding is more efficient than aerobics for burning up calories. If researchers were to undertake a study of twins whereby one twin performed daily aerobics and the other practiced a bodybuilding programme where the end result was increased lean body mass, the bodybuilding twin would ultimately be a more efficient fat burner than his aerobic twin. Why? Well, by adding lean body mass, that person’s metabolic requirements are higher – muscle uses energy even while it is not being used. The aerobic twin might use more calories during the time period of exercise itself, but the weight-lifting twin would use a higher amount during rest time, leading to a higher net 24-hour expenditure. The weight lifter burns fat just sitting there.

4. You can completely reshape a muscle by doing isolation exercises

You can’t limit growth to only one area of a muscle. Larry Scott, for whom the “biceps peaking” Scott curl was named, had tremendous biceps, but he didn’t have much of a peak. The shape of your biceps, or for that matter, any muscle, is determined by your genetic makeup. When you work a muscle, any muscle, it works on the all-or-nothing principle, meaning that each muscle fiber recruited to do a lift – along the entire length of that muscle – is contracted fully. Why would a certain number of them, like the ones in the middle of the biceps, suddenly start to grow differently or at a faster rate than its partners? If anything, the muscles that are closest to the insertion points are the most prone to mechanical stress, and you don’t see them get any bigger than the rest of the muscle. If they did, everyone would have proportions like Popeye. This is true of any muscle, but you’re probably thinking, what about quads? I know that when I do hack squats with my feet together, it tends to give me more sweep in my legs. Sure it does, but the quadriceps are made up of four different main muscles, and doing hacks with your feet together forces the vastus lateralis muscles on the outside of the leg to work harder; consequently, they grow proportionately along their entire length and give the outer quads more sweep. As further evidence, take a look at a picture of any young professional bodybuilder before he was developed enough to become a pro. He will have virtually the same structural lines as he does today. All that has changed is that his muscles are now bigger.

5.  If you get a pump, you’re working the muscles adequately to ensure muscular hypertrophy, or if your muscles are burning, that means you are promoting muscle growth

A pump, despite what Arnold Schwarzenegger said about it, is nothing more than the muscle becoming engorged with blood from capillary action. It can be achieved easily by curling a soup can fifty times. It by no means equates to the muscular intensity needed to promote growth. The same is true of the coveted “burn” that Hollywood muscleheads advise the public to “go for”. A burn is simply an accumulation of lactic acid, a byproduct of chemical respiration. You can get a burn by peddling a bicycle or simply extending your arm straight out and moving it in tiny circles (or sitting in a burning fireplace!). It does not necessarily mean you are promoting muscle growth. For hypertrophy to occur, you have to subject the muscles to high levels of tension, and high tension levels are best induced by heavy weights.

6. If you do hundreds of sit-ups a day, you will eventually achieve a narrow, washboard-type midsection

There is no such thing as spot-reduction. Doing thousands and thousands of sit-ups will give you tight abdominal muscles, but they will do nothing to rid your midsection of fat. Thigh adductor and abductor movements will give women’s thighs more firmness, but they will do nothing to rid the area of fat, or what is commonly (and erroneously) called cellulite. Nothing will rid the body of fat, unless it is a carefully-orchestrated reduction in your daily energy intake; in other words, if you burn more calories than you ingest (or do that in conjunction with a nutrient partitioning agent.)

7. Training like a powerlifter – deadlifts, heavy squats, bench presses – will make your physique look blocky

Blockiness, like baldness or a flat chest, is a genetic trait. If you were born blocky, then powerlifting will simply make you a bigger blocky person. The only way to offset a blocky appearance is to give special emphasis to the lats, the outer muscles of the thighs, and to a fat-reducing diet which will keep the midsection as narrow as possible. With these modifications, you will give your body the illusion of a more “aerodynamic” appearance. The truth is, powerlifting exercises are excellent for bodybuilding.

8. High repetitions make your muscles harder and more cut up

Although there is some evidence to suggest that high repetitions might induce some extra capillary intrusion into a muscle, they will do nothing to make the muscle harder or more cut up. If a completely sedentary person began weightlifting, using either low reps or high reps, he or she would experience a rapid increase in tonus, the degree of muscular contraction that the muscle maintains even when that muscle is relaxed, but that would happen regardless of rep range. The only way that high repetitions would make a muscle more cut up is if, by doing a higher number of reps, your body as a whole was in negative energy balance, and you were burning more calories than you were ingesting. The truth is, heavy weights, lifted for 5-8 reps per set, can build rock-hard muscles. You just have to get the fat off them to see how “hard” they are.

9. Instinctive training is the best way to promote gains

If bodybuilders followed their instincts, they’d go home and pop open a beer. Instinctive training is a wonderful catch-phrase, and it might even work for drug-assisted athletes since the very act of opening up a beer would probably induce muscular growth in them. However, in a natural bodybuilder, the approach to long-term, consistent gains in muscular mass has to be, shall we say, a bit more scientific. Research results conducted by exercise physiologists recommend a systematic approach such as the one encompassed by periodization where the bodybuilder, through a period of several weeks, lifts ever-increasing sets in basic compound movements of a three to five – rep range. This heavy period is also periodically staggered with a lighter training phase “cycle”. Ultimately, the percentages increase, the three to five – rep lifts increase, the strength and lean body mass increases. There is nothing instinctive about it.

10. Women need to train differently than men

On a microscopic level, there is virtually no difference between the muscle tissue of men and the muscle tissue of women. Men and women have different levels of the same hormones, and that’s what is responsible for the difference in the amount of muscle a man can typically put on and the amount of muscle a woman can typically gain. There is absolutely no reason why either should train differently than the other sex, provided they have the same goals. The only difference in training might be as a result of cultural, sexual preferences. A woman might desire to develop her glutes a little more so she looks better in a pair of jeans. Conversely, a man might want to build his lats a little more so that he fits the cultural stereotype of a virile man.

 

Forward Head Posture Fix

Forward Head Posture Fix by Mike Westerdal

This page is not official Forward Head Posture Fix page. To get to the official platform Click Here

How 10 simple exercises will instantly restore balance to your posture making you physically stronger, mentally sharper and achieve peak performance.

For men and women who want to get rid of their texting neck, fix their posture in order to move, sleep and breathe better

Your neck is designed to remain vertical, supporting the weight of your skull in a perfect line from the top of your head straight down through your body to your feet.

When you look at yourself in the mirror from the side, your ear, your shoulder, and your hips should all be in a straight line down to the floor. If it is unaligned and your ear is in front of your shoulders, it’s a sure sign of forward head posture.

The average head weighs 10-12lbs. When your head sits perfectly upon your neck and shoulders, the body naturally adapts to holding this weight.

But if your head is constantly pulled forward, the weight of your head pulls on your neck and puts pressure on your spine.

When your head is pulled forward the additional pressure on your neck, shoulders and back rises dramatically causing serious tissue damage. In fact, every inch your head is thrust forward from its natural position adds another 10 lbs of stress on the neck, shoulders, back and spine.

It’s why you may have developed that ugly ‘hump’ below your neck; to combat the stress of holding your head up, the body’s reaction has been to build-up bone and fat tissue to compensate and protect the spine at the C7 vertebrae.

Forward head posture doesn’t just leave you looking awkward… No matter how hard you train or how well you eat, unless you start fixing your head posture right now, it may not be possible to reverse the damage already done.

YOUR POOR HEAD POSTURE IS MAKING YOU LOOK 10 LBS HEAVIER AND 2 INCHES SHORTER THAN YOU ACTUALLY ARE

As the main connector between your upper torso and skull, the neck has the crucial task of cradling the body’s computer — the brain.

Not only does Forward Head Posture give your back that ugly hunch and crouched-over look… it also causes much deeper, serious problems including:

  • Constant fatigue and lack of energy
  • Pain in your neck, shoulders or upper, lower and middle back
  • Permanent damage to your joints, muscles, ligaments, blood vessels & nerves
  • Headaches and migraines
  • Poor sleep or insomnia
  • Arthritis
  • Impaired athletic performance
  • Loss of height by 2 inches
  • Looking 10 lbs fatter than you actually are
  • Affects your hormonal health
  • Noisy mouth breathing, snoring & sleep apnea
  • Early degeneration of your spine
  • Pinched and trapped nerves
  • Decreased range of motion
  • Lack of confidence
  • Blood Flow to the Brain
  • Asthma
  • Decreased lung capacity by up to 30%
  • Harmful affects to vision and hearing
  • Jaw pain and sinus issues
  • Dizziness, vertigo and balance issues
  • Burdens your digestive system

INTRODUCING ONE OF THE BODY’S MOST VITAL MUSCLES…
THAT YOU’VE NEVER HEARD OF

Your neck is literally the BRIDGE between your head and your body. It’s the balance beam from which good posture flows.

Although there are a number of major muscles in the neck and back, there is one “vital” muscle at the front of your neck which does all the lifting…

… that muscle is: the sternocleidomastoid.

The sternocleidomastoid originates at the breastplate (sternum) and collar bone (clavicle) and inserts at the mastoid process of the temporal bone of the skull.

When your sternocleidomastoid is strong and supple, your head sits perfectly upon your neck. The body follows the head. When your head is properly aligned as it should be the rest of the spine falls into place.

By holding your head in place it maintains your spine in a healthy, lengthened position and removes stress and tension from your upper, middle and lower back muscles. Your upper torso is optimally lengthened, keeping your windpipe clear and allowing maximum intake of breath into your lungs, increasing oxygen levels and improving brain function.

When you eliminate forward head posture, you…

  • … achieve peak performance with greater lung capacity and optimized hormones.
  • … appear to be 10 lbs lighter and 2 inches taller.
  • … train harder, heavier and gain strength faster than you thought possible.
  • … are more focused and clear-thinking.
  • … protect your spine from wear and tear.
  • … breathe and sleep better without snoring.
  • … increase your confidence so you’re not self-conscious.

This muscle is the key to your postural health. But any imbalance or weakness in this vital connection between your head and torso sends shockwaves through your body.

IT’S NOT ABOUT THE STRETCHES AND MOVEMENTS; IT’S ABOUT THE ORDER OF THE MOVEMENTS.

When you see how deeply connected the muscles around your neck and back are to each other, you realize there has to be a right order in which to exercise these for optimal effect.

You literally have to “unwind” the right muscles one-by-one in the right order to really target them.

If you don’t, you’re wasting your time doing ANY stretching. You need to hit the muscles from different directions using a combination of exercise techniques to properly target them.

Once you know the right way to do it, you can learn to fix your head posture on your own.

A COMBINATION OF DIFFERENT TECHNIQUES TO “UNRAVEL”
THE NECK MUSCLES:

MUSCLE RE-EDUCATION DRILLS

If your neck has been thrust forward for too long carrying too much weight, it needs some serious re-alignment. These drills re-educating your muscles to put your head in the right position again.

BREATHING EXERCISES

Deep belly breathing helps release tension in the neck, shoulders, back and the whole body so your muscles will relax and help bring the head and body into balance.

MOBILITY EXERCISES

The more your head moves forward, the more your joints lock up. Mobility movements are used to unlock the joints in your spine to decrease the stress and damage.

DEEP CERVICAL FLEXOR TRAINING

The cervical flexors sit at the back of your neck and their weakness causes your head to drop forward. Recent research has shown that re-training the flexors is the key to restoring the balance of your head.

SELF MASSAGE

This therapeutic technique loosens up and lengthens muscles that have become shortened and helps to relieve trigger points that have built up.

STATIC STRETCHING

Targets shortened muscles in order to lengthen and elongate them. Done in the correct sequence static stretching can be very effective.

POSTURAL STRENGTHENING

Now that we have unraveled the head, neck and upper body by targeting all the muscles and joints that are affected by FHP, we need to work on keeping things in that new, ideal beneficial posture.

FORWARD HEAD POSTURE FIX DVD VIDEO

Nailing perfect form is essential to working the sternocleidomastoid properly. The video is split into three sections: the first is a Coaching Instructional Video beginning with an explanation about what the following exercise is designed to do, how to execute it with the best form and what you should feel throughout the move.

In the second video is a Follow Along format designed so you can perform the movement at the same time as the video with the explanation stripped out.

In the third video, you’ll find exercise swaps that include progressions and regressions to make the movements either harder or easier for you depending on what you need.

FORWARD HEAD POSTURE FIX MANUAL

The video sequences are powerful, but it’s the supplementary manual that goes deeper into the underlying causes behind forward head posture, why leaving it untreated can cause long-lasting damage to your health and how you can instantly slam the brakes on the damage you’re doing to your spine and neck.

Discovering the techniques and sequential flow outlined in detail in the manual, you can start the process of bringing your body back into alignment, good health and strength with detailed descriptions of the exact exercise movements with pictures.

BONUSES

BONUS 1
Lower Back Pain Lifestyle Audit

The Lower Back Pain Lifestyle Audit is a fact-packed video presentation that helps you instantly identify those factors at home or at work causing the problem.

Is your home or office desk ergonomically correct? Are you sleeping in the best possible position with the right kind of mattress and pillow?

This detailed presentation gives you practical, smart suggestions to make small changes to your current lifestyle that will have a positive impact on your health far into the future.

BONUS 2
10 Best Natural Sleep Solutions

The 10 Best Natural Sleep Solutions is a practical guide to having your best night’s sleep ever — giving you more energy and greater vitality — without medication. Within the reports pages you’ll discover 10 of the best ways to get the sleep you’ve always longed for so you can start every day feeling your strongest and most energetic ever.

INSIDE THE FORWARD HEAD POSTURE FIX
PLAN, YOU’LL DISCOVER:

  • Exactly how to hit every single key neck muscle with targeted, move-by-move videos of each and every exercise within Rick’s “sequential flow” (Rick has designed a program so simple,clear and effective that it’ll become second nature in no time at all).
  • Why untreated forward head posture is like a ticking time bomb for your overall health and why you need to act NOW before the damage becomes irreversible (you really could be days away from causing irreparable harm to your body).
  • Why you’re more likely to suffer from texting neck if you work or hang out in any of these “high risk” areas for developing back and neck pain (check this out to make sure your home or workplace isn’t one of these).
  • How women can instantly make their chest look bigger and their waist slimmer through this quick head forward posture routine.
  • Why some people develop the ugly “Dowager Hump” because of poor posture and what to do about it if you’re already suffering (don’t worry, it can be reversed if you catch it in time).
  • How your neck curve is SUPPOSED to look and feel like and how you can start making simple changes to prevent the discs in your neck joints from degenerating further.
  • Why forward head posture is probably causing your body, bones and joints to degrade faster than normal and how you can instantly stop the clock on this rapid aging process.
  • Why it may be too late to fix the damage to your neck, back and shoulders and exactly what you need to do to discover whether you can turn back your body clock before the damage becomes permanent.

This page is not official Forward Head Posture Fix page. To get to the official platform Click Here

Myths of Pro Bodybuilding – Part 1

1. You can get as big as a pro bodybuilder without taking steroids; it just takes longer.

Despite what many of the magazines say, all professional bodybuilders use steroids in combination with other growth-enhancing drugs. Without manipulating hormones, it just isn’t possible to get that degree of muscularity, the paper-thin skin, and the continuing ability to pack on mass, despite sometimes having poor workout habits and relative ignorance of the principles involved in optimal training. Many supplement distributors, in order to sell their products, would have you believe otherwise. Still, that’s no reason to give up. By using well-designed training program with mostly compound exercises, consuming a nutrient-rich diet, and by getting proper amounts of rest, almost every person can make incredible changes in his or her physique. The competitive bodybuilder circuit may not be in your future, but building the strong and muscular physique is certainly achievable, as are self-respect and robust health.

2. In order to get really big, you have to eat a super-high-calorie diet.

Well, that’s true; you’ll get really big if you eat a super-high-calorie diet, but you’ll look like the Michelin Man’s fraternal twin. However, if you want to get big, lean-tissue wise, then super-high-calorie diets are probably not for you unless you are one of those very few people with metabolic rates so fast you can burn off these calories instead of depositing them as fat. Unfortunately,  in most people, about 65% of the new tissue gains brought about by high-calorie diets consists of fat! Of the remaining 35%, approximately 15% consists of increased intracellular fluid volume, leaving a very modest percentage attributable to increased lean muscle mass. Only about 20% to 25% of increased muscle growth stems from increased protein synthesis. The rest of the muscle growth is directly attributable to the increased proliferation of the satellite cells in the basal lamina of muscle tissue, and dietary energy (calories) is not a key factor in the differentiation of these cells into new myofibres (muscle cells). Of all factors determining muscle growth, prevention of protein breakdown (anti-catabolism) seems to be the most relevant, but adding adipose (fat) tissue through constant overfeeding can actually increase muscle proteolysis (breakdown). Furthermore, additional adipose mass can radically alter hormone balances which are responsible for controlling protein breakdown in muscle. Insulin balance, for one, which partially controls anti-catabolism in the body, is impaired by consistent overfeeding. So much for the eat-big-to-get-big philosophy! Stay away from the super-high calorie diets unless you’re a genetic freak, or you’re woefully lean and don’t mind putting on fat (or you’re using appropriate pharmaceutical supplements).

3.  If you eat a low-fat diet, it doesn’t matter how many calories you take in, you won’t gain any fat.

The bottom line is if you exceed your energy requirements, you’ll gradually get fatter and fatter. It’s true that eating a diet rich in fat will pack on the pounds quicker for a variety of reasons, the most significant being that a gram of fat has nine calories as opposed to the four calories per gram that carbohydrates and proteins carry. Fat is also metabolized differently in the body. It takes a lesser amount of calories to assimilate the energy in ingested fat than it does to assimilate an equal (weight wise) amount of carbohydrates. Consequently, more fat calories get stored than carbohydrate calories. However, the gross intake of carbohydrates, as facilitated by many of the weight-gain powders, will make you fat very quickly.

4. The more times a week you work out, the more you’ll grow.

No, no no. This is one of the most damaging myths that ever reared its ugly head. It is very easy for the natural athlete to overtrain! When you train your muscles too often for them to heal, the end-result is zero growth and perhaps even losses. Working out every day in most cases will lead to gross overtraining. It can be done with just a few smartly combined exercises every day with some light days, but even then will end up in fatigue in most cases. Also, the results will not be optimal and you will most likely not reach your best gains. Although a body part worked to complete, the total muscular failure that recruited as many muscle fibers as physiologically possible can take 5-10 days to completely heal, many take that info and train one body part once a week and hit it hard. This is not the best approach for the natural bodybuilder because if you are not using drugs, your “growth window” is only 48 – 72 hours after stimulating the muscle. One of the biggest mistakes that people do is to train to absolute fiber-tearing failure. This common training mentality is very common in the bodybuilding world, mostly because pro-bodybuilders push that kind of approach, and people copy it. The results for most people is muscular and nervous fatigue and not much results. The key to building muscle is progressive overload, meaning that it is important to add weight to the bar or number of reps and to get stronger. Only then you can get potentially bigger, not if you “kill” your biceps with 4 sets of 5 different exercises in the same session. This will sound strange for many but to grow your biceps you will need to concentrate on doing heavy pulling multijoint movements in combination with some strong biceps curls, like standing barbell curl or incline curls. If you stimulate the biceps every second day, three times a week, and get stronger in exercises, one day with chin-ups, second with curls, and third with rows, with no more than 3 sets per exercise (preferably just 2), your biceps will grow. So, don’t train harder, train smarter!

5. The longer you work out, the better.

It just isn’t necessary to do 20-30 sets for a body part, or even 10 sets like many ‘experts’ would have you believe. In fact, research has shown that it’s possible to completely fatigue a muscle in one set, provided that that set taxes a muscle completely, ie. incorporates as many muscle fibers as possible and takes them to the point of ischemic rigour where, rather than contract and relax, the muscle fibers freeze up, sort of like a microscopic version of rigor mortis. Any further contraction causes microscopic tearing. Hypertrophy is just one adaption to this kind of stress and it’s naturally the kind most bodybuilders are interested in. This kind of intensity can usually be achieved by doing drop or break-down sets where you rep out, lower the weight, and continue doing reps until you either can’t do another rep or you’ve run out of weight. It can also be achieved by doing your maximum number of reps on a particular exercise: by a combination of will, tenacity, and short rest periods, you complete ten more reps. You achieve the short rest periods by locking out the weight-bearing joint in question without putting the weight down. In other words, completely surpass your normal pain and energy thresholds. If you can truly work your muscle to the point described, it will afford you little, if any, the benefit to do another set. The exception would be the body parts that are so big that they have distinct geographical areas, like the back, which obviously has an upper, middle and lower part. The chest might also fall into this category, as it has a distinct upper and lower part, each with different insertion points. Many people can’t give all in just one set, so the best option for them is to do 2 sets. First one serves as the muscular and nervous preparation and second can be potentially the best set. The third set is not necessary in most cases.

6. You don’t have to be strong to be big

For a variety of reasons, people, even those with an equal amount of muscle mass, vary in strength enormously. It might have something to do with fast-twitch/slow-twitch muscle ratios, or it might have something to do with the efficiency of nerve pathways or even limb length and the resultant torque. But it is still a relative term. To get bigger muscles, you have to lift heavier weight, and you, not the guy next door, have to become stronger – stronger than you were. Increasing muscle strength in the natural athlete, except in a very few, rare instances, requires that the tension applied to muscle fibers be high. If the tension applied to muscle fibers are light, maximal growth will not occur.

7. The training programs that work best for pro bodybuilders are best for everyone

You see it happen every day in gyms across the country. Some bodybuilding neophyte will walk up to a guy who looks like he’s an escaped attraction from Jurassic Park and ask him how he trains. The biggest guy in the gym likely got that way from either taking a tremendous amount of drugs and/or by being genetically predispositioned to get big. Follow a horse home and you’ll find horse parents. The guy in your gym who is best bodybuilder is the guy who has made the most progress and done the most to his physique using natural techniques. He may still be a pencil neck, but he may have put on 40 pounds of lean body mass to get where he is, and that, in all probability, took some know-how. That person probably doesn’t overtrain, keeps his sets down to a minimum, and uses great form and concentration on the eccentric (negative) portion of each exercise repetition. Many pros spend hours and hours doing innumerable sets – so many it would far surpass the average person’s recuperative abilities. If average people followed the routines of average pro bodybuilders, they would, in effect, start to whittle down what muscle mass they did have or, at best, make only a tiny bit of progress after a couple of years.

 

8. You can’t make gains if you only train with weights three days a week

Although you probably couldn’t find a single steroid-assisted athlete who trains only three days a week, there’s absolutely no reason why a three-day-a-week routine couldn’t work for many natural athletes. For hard gainers, the best training is only two days a week with full-body routine. As long as your routine attacked the whole body and you worked to failure on each set, you could easily experience great gains on this sort of routine. However, you need to pay even more attention to your diet if you only train three days a week, especially if your job involves little or no physical activity, and you like to spend your idle time eating. Ignore those who say three-day-a-week bodybuilders are only recreational lifters. Think quality and not quantity!

A Healthy Breakfast

It’s a trite but true refrain that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. For most of us, it’s been about 12 hours since our last meal and our bodies need a good refueling. Yet, statistics show that as many as 50% of us don’t eat breakfast.

We’re too busy. We don’t like breakfast foods. We’re not hungry. We’re trying to lose weight.

Sad to say, none of those reasons are valid. There are many healthy breakfasts that can either be bought or made that are fast and even portable. There’s no law that says you have to eat breakfast foods for breakfast. You legitimately might not feel hungry in the morning, particularly if you aren’t accustomed to eating breakfast. But you should eat something, even if you make a fairly light choice, like fruit and yogurt. Trying to lose weight is the worst excuse of all. Study after study shows that people who skip breakfast end up eating more the rest of the day than people who eat a solid breakfast every morning.

So how do you get the magical mix of the right nutrients that will give you energy and send you healthfully into your day?

It’s not that hard, really. Spend a little bit of time thinking about what you like and then plan some healthy breakfasts. Here are some ideas to get you started:

 

* If you need something portable, the ever-popular smoothie is a good choice. Be careful when you purchase a smoothie at a shop, however, as some can have as many as 600 calories. You can purchase a good blender or smoothie maker to have at home and whip up your own smoothie in less time than it takes to stop at a smoothie store, and you’ll know exactly what’s in it.

 

* For an even faster breakfast, try making some breakfast burritos and keeping them in the freezer. You can use regular or whole-wheat tortillas, scrambled eggs (either whole, all whites, a mix, or an egg product), some veggies like peppers and onions. These freeze beautifully. Pull one out, and while you’re pouring your coffee, it can be heating in the microwave. Add a banana or apple for on-the-go dining.

 

* Cereal is a fine breakfast, as long as it’s not the only thing you eat. Consider adding some banana or blueberries on top, or fixing it with rice or almond milk for a healthy dairy addition. Otherwise, stick to skim cow milk.

 

* If you don’t like breakfast, consider making a peanut butter and jelly sandwich on wheat bread. Grab a banana on the way out the door. Have some leftover vegetarian pizza from dinner? That’s a fine breakfast, though you will want to add a glass of milk or some fruit to round it out.

 

* Trying to lose weight? Breakfast might be the easiest meal to fill up without using a lot of calories or fat. Have oatmeal with skim milk or water with little honey. Consider a homemade version of a fast-food sandwich. You can fry up an egg, add a slice of Canadian bacon and put the two into a toasted English muffin for a 200-calorie, filling breakfast.

 

Body Massage for Relaxation and Health Improvement 

MASSAGING ACROSS THE MUSCLE FIBRES

 

This type of massage is very good for relaxing tense muscles and  a stressed mind.

You perform this massage by rubbing or gripping across the direction of the muscle fibres or across tendons. You take one area after the other. You begin by massaging each area lightly, superficially and slowly to warm up, and then proceed by massaging deeper, firmer and more swiftly.

According to the size and conditions of the area you treat, you can use different types of manipulation. You can use a couple of fingers at a small area, or to reach deep into a tense point  You can rub with all your finger tips or with the palm of your hand at greater areas. To get a harder effect, you can use your finger knuckles.

 

MASSAGING ALONG THE MUSCLE FIBRES

This type of massage will give the following effects: Stiffness will be reduced or cured, and the muscles will gain in mobility. The muscles will get better blood supply and drainage. The muscles will get a better drainage of tissue fluids into the lymph system, and thereby swollen muscles will normalize. These effects will in turn make tired muscles faster regain good condition.

By this massage you stroke along the direction of the muscle fibres, and always in the direction of the blood stream towards the heart.

Also now you take one area after the other, but try to reach the whole length of a muscle or muscle group at each stroke. Also by this massage, you begin massaging at each area lightly, superficially and slowly to warm up, and then proceed by massaging deeper, firmer and somewhat faster.

Also by this longitudinal massage, you can press down and stroke with your finger tips, with all your fingers, or grip around a muscle or muscle group with your fingers.

 

MASSAGE WITH AN ELECTRIC DEVICE

Most electric massage devices are vibrating up and down. This vibration mostly gives the same effect as the massage across the muscle fibres. If you also stroke with the device head along the muscle in the direction of the blood stream towards the heart, you will simultaneously also achieve the effects of longitudinal massage.

 

COMBINING THE MASSAGE WITH STRETCHING

The effects of the massage can be increased by also stretching the limbs and body parts of the person you work on. Stretch in the natural movement directions of the limb or body parts until you reach some resistance. Do not stretch hard to go beyond the resistance point. However, by holding the limb some time at the resistance point will often cause the limb to relax, and then you can go some way further.

 

HOW HARD SHOULD YOU PERFROM THE MASSAGE?

Tired and stiff muscles are often tender and aching. Working at a tender point will always cause some temporal pain. However, if you use the right degree of firmness, the effect of the massage should cause an immediate release of pain and tenderness when you have finished working at a point.  You should never work so hard that the pain is felt nearly unbearable, or so hard that pain remains after the massage is finished. If you do so, you can hurt or aggravate already existing tissue damage.

To achieve the right firmness you should monitor the reactions of the person you work at and listen to his comments. You should also never perform a massage on an area with a distinct inflammation or a distinct injury.

 

USE OF MASSAGE OILS

By applying a massage oil or ointment at the area you work at, you ease the massage work and increase the effects of the massage. Your fingers glide more easily upon the skin covering the area. The blood supply of the skin and muscles will be stimulated. You get a sensual and exciting scent on the area and in the air. Ingredients in the oil will ameliorate muscular ache and pain. According to the composition of the massage oil, there will be different stimulating effects upon the muscles, for example faster regeneration of tired or hurt muscle tissue.

 

Muscle Building Rules for Skinny People – Part 2

In part 1, I touched on general weight gain rules and reasons why you can’t gain weight. Now it’s time to get into workout specifics…

WORKOUT RULES

 

Stop listening to every ridiculous piece of advice you hear in the gym or read on a message board

Recently a client of mine informed me that someone in the gym stated that he was training all wrong and he needed to train 5-6 days a week, and aim for more reps during his workout. Somewhere in the range of 15-20 reps per set.

The person giving the advice was quite confident about his recommendations, and he had an impressive physique that typically elevates him to the elusive “listen to me if you want to look like me” level in the gym. He was bigger than my client, so even though my client’s “intellectual” mind knows that advice is absurd; his “unrealistic dreamer” mind took this information very seriously. So seriously that he changed his program and didn’t inform me until a week or so later. This particular person had been making great progress on his current program, yet he allowed this one person’s comment to overshadow that progress and convince him that his program was inadequate. This is a mistake and it showed in his lack of further progress.

In addition, don’t judge the validity of what a person says by how they look. Just because the guy is huge doesn’t mean he is spewing pertinent advice for you. Many people that have big physiques are big despite of their training, not because of it. I know some huge guys that know very little about training and dieting correctly. They can do whatever and still gain muscle; unfortunately we are not that way, so we much approach things in a more intelligent way.

 

Workout Infrequently

This is the most difficult concept for many to grasp simply because it involves less action, instead of more. When we get motivated and start a new program, it’s natural to want to do something. We want to train and train and train. Thinking all along that the more you train, the more muscle you will build. Unfortunately, this could not be farther from the truth.

More training does not equal more muscle growth. Understand that the purpose of weight training is to stimulate muscle growth. That takes very little time. Once that has been done, the muscle needs to be repaired and new muscle needs to be built. That only happens when you are resting. You do not build muscle in the gym, you build muscle when resting! If you never give your body any essential “non active” time, when will it have a chance to build muscle? Think about that.

Now, add in the fact that you have a difficult time gaining weight and the importance of rest increases. Individuals who are naturally thin and have difficulty building muscle tend to require less training and more rest.

 

Focus on Multi-Jointed Lifts

Multi-jointed exercises are those that stimulate the most amounts of muscle fibers. Unlike isolation exercises which only work individual muscles, multi-jointed lifts work many different muscle groups simultaneously. For those needing to gain weight, this is ideal because these lifts put your body under the most amount of stress. This is the stress that will shock your nervous system and cause the greatest release of muscle building hormones. This results in increased muscle gain all over the body.

You can still do some isolation work; however it should not be the focus of your workouts, and should only come after your multi-jointed lifting is complete.

 

Focus on Using Free Weights

Free weights are preferred over machines for many reasons, but most importantly because they allow the stimulation of certain supporting muscle groups when training. Stimulating these stabilizer and synergistic muscles will allow you go get stronger, and ultimately build more muscle faster. Yes, some can most likely still build large amounts of muscle using machines, but why make it more difficult if you already have a difficult time gaining weight?

 

Lift a weight that is challenging for you

Building mass involves lifting relatively heavy weight. This is necessary because the muscle fibers that cause the most amount of muscle size growth (called Type IIB) are best stimulated by the lifting of heavy weight. A heavy weight as one that only allows you to perform 4-8 reps before your muscles fail.

Using a lighter weight and doing more reps can stimulate some Type IIB fibers, but again if you have a difficult time gaining weight, why make it more difficult? You need to try and stimulate as many as you can with the use of heavy weights.

 

Focus more on the eccentric portion of the exercise

When you lift a weight, it can be divided into three distinct periods. The positive, the negative and midpoint. The concentric or “positive” motion usually involves the initial push or effort when you begin the rep. The midpoint is signaled by a short pause before reversing and returning to the starting position. The eccentric, or “negative” portion of each lift is characterized by your resistance against then natural pull of the weight.

For example, when doing push-ups, the positive motion is the actual pushing up motion. Once you have pushed all the way up, you hit the mid point. The negative motion begins when you start to lower yourself back down. Most would simply lower themselves as fast as they pushed up, but I recommend extending and slowing down this portion. Slowing down the eccentric part of the lift will help to stimulate more muscle growth. It actually activates more of the Type IIB fibers mentioned about in Rule 7.

 

Keep your workout short but intense

Your goal should be to get in, stimulate your muscles and then get out as quickly as possible. It is not necessary to do large amounts of exercisers per body part trying to target every muscle and hit every “angle”. This should only be a concern of someone with an already developed, mature physique who is trying to improve weak areas.

If you have no pec, don’t concern yourself with trying to target inner, outer, upper, lower or whatever. Just work your chest. You should do no more than 2-3 exercises per body part, preferably just one. That’s it. Doing more than that won’t build more muscle, faster. In fact it could possibly lead to muscle loss. Long training sessions cause catabolic hormone levels to rise dramatically. Catabolic hormones are responsible for breaking down muscle tissue resulting in MUSCLE LOSS. While at the same time, long training sessions suppress the hormones that actually build muscle.

If you don’t want to lose muscle during your workouts, I suggest limiting your sessions to no more than 60-75 minutes MAXIMUM. Less if you can.

 

Limit your aerobic activity 

Honestly, I do not do any aerobic activity when I am trying to gain weight. This is mainly because it interferes with the important “non-active” time my body needs for muscle building and recovery. I do understand that people have lives and other activities that they don’t want to give up, so it must be kept to a minimum. It won’t hurt your progress as long as you don’t over do it. If you find that you are doing more aerobic activity weight training, that’s overdoing it.

I also don’t recommend it because people tend do it for the wrong reasons. Many start aerobic activity because they believe it will help them to lose fat. While that is true, it won’t do so on a high calorie mass diet. To lose fat, you need to be eating fewer calories.

 

Don’t program hop

Here’s how it usually happens. You’ve just read about a new exercise or workout that is supposed to pack on the mass. Now, even though you had already started another training program a few weeks ago, you are tired of it and really want to start this routine instead because it sounds better.

I call these people, “program hoppers”. They are very enthusiastic when starting a new program, but they never follow it long enough to actually see any results. They are easily distracted and love to drop whatever they may be doing to follow the latest “hot” workout or exercise.

My advice is don’t do it. This is a bad habit that never leads to a positive outcome. Understand that it takes time for any program to work. To be successful, you must follow your program consistently. Yes, there are many different training methods and interesting routines out there, but you can’t do them all at the same time and jumping around won’t allow enough time for any of them to actually be effective for you. Pick one that is focused on your current goal and stick with it. There will be plenty of time to try the others later, but NOT NOW.

Part 1