6 ways to improve your workout program

Large Muscle Group Isolation Days

The most popular way to exercise today. You learn it from friends, magazines, websites, even “professionals.”  But have you ever wondered why the majority of weight training programs were developed this way?  The method trickled down from unnatural bodybuilders, a.k.a. steroid users.  They go to the gym twice a day, isolating one muscle group per visit.  They, however, don’t need to worry about the physiology involved with overtraining or recovery.  They have other problems. But I digress.  What the non-user has done is modify the routine and taken out one visit each day. By the time we come back to the same muscle group the next week, we’ve lost some of what was gained.  And when a non-user has the same type of workout format as those on supplemental drugs which improve recovery time, there is more harm done to the body than good.

Personal trainer fix

I always say that there are ways to work out, and then there are efficient ways to work out.  A muscle builder’s routine should consist of four days at the gym and three days of rest. The split consists of two upper and two lower body days, or two push and two pull days.  Each day will contain exercises working ALL muscles within that group.  Upper body day will include the chest, back, shoulders, and arms. This does not mean you will be stuck in the gym for five hours a day.  Most exercises involve multiple muscles.  Incline bench works the chest, shoulders, biceps, and triceps. A seated row works the whole back (traps and lats), biceps, and triceps.  As you can see, arms don’t need a day dedicated to them. Legs (quads and hams), glutes, abdominals, shoulders (traps), and forearms (grip) are all stimulated during deadlifts.  Knowing this information may help you cut out a handful of exercises to shorten your day at the gym and increase your results.

Time Spent in the Gym and Rest Periods

Plenty of us like to stay at the gym until our muscles are dead.  Exercising can feel like a chore when we spend hours on it and have other things to do.  No matter what type of routine you utilize, you may have 4-8 exercises to get to and very little time to do it.

Personal trainer fix

Cut the rest time. You only need 90 seconds of rest between sets. This is sufficient for immediate energy to return back to the muscles. “But Zak, I already do that.”  In that case, supersets will eliminate the problem.  For an upper body day, superset bench press and rows. For the lower body equivalent, superset squats and calf raises. During the supersets, take 30 seconds between each set.  For example: set of chest press, rest 30 seconds, set of rows, rest 30 seconds, next set of chest press, and so on. By the time you start the second set for chest, 90 seconds have passed (taking into account the time spent on the set of rows). An eight exercise workout should only take 45-60 minutes to complete. More time than that means you are no longer having a productive workout, and it becomes endurance based rather than muscle development.

It is important to keep certain principals in mind. Everyone’s goals are different. I will be writing about other workout formats and routines in later articles.
2  more ways to improve your workout.

*Order of Exercises

*Technique and Range of Motion

 By: Zak Goodman BS, CSCS
Exercise specialist
Zgoodman@trainingaspects.com

Suggested articles:
*Reasons for not exercising
*5 Weight loss don’ts 

Suggested video:
*Kettlebell Vs. Dumbbell

 

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Training Aspects Personal Training and Sports Performance:

Training Aspects’  personal trainers and sports performance coaches want you to accomplish your goals. You, as the personal training client, are a reflection of our personal training and group training methods! We are here to help you accomplish all of your personal training goals!  Our main training focus are people looking to increase performance, lose weight , lose body fat and increase lean muscle. Whether you live in Cherry HillHaddonfield,Marlton, or any of the other surrounding areas we are here to help you Move, Look and feel as you’ve always desired…

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Diet soda the healthy choice?

Healthy choice, Diet soda?

KettleBells yoga  Boxing  pilates sprints body weight exercises Bosu

I was looking over various diet articles on the internet when I came across this one: New study is a wake up call for soda drinkers. The first study has many holes in it, such as their point that a person who drinks two cans of soda gains more weight than a person who doesn’t.  Our bodies, with age, will increase body fat automatically, especially if we’re not health-conscious.  To compare a soda drinker to someone who doesn’t drink soda takes nothing into consideration regarding lifestyle.

The second part of this article talks about artificial sweeteners/aspartame.  I have beenLose weight, lose body fat, increase lean muscle telling my clients to stay away from these products for a very long time!  There are controversial studies on both sides for these products, but staying away from them is common knowledge. Commonly known reasons include the effects of caffeine, the fact that soda cleans pavements, and the effects of aspartame. Let’s go a little deeper into the issue of soda. Let’s break down some basic ingredients in soda.

Personal trainer analysis #1

Increased phosphorus levels– too much phosphorus in your body leads to a reduction in calcium and magnesium, which are vital for a normal heart rate, nerve and muscle function, blood clotting, good bones and teeth.  It can lead to tooth loss, damage your gums, cause osteoarthritis in adults and bone fractures in adolescents.  Additionaly, caffeine may also aid in loss of calcium.

Personal trainer analysis #2

Sodium benzoat – this is used in many brands of soda pop as a preservative. Although it is not considered to be harmful, it causes hyperactivity in children. The main concern with sodium benzoate is when it combines with citric or ascorbic acid (vitamin C) to form benzene. Benzene is a known carcinogen which increases the risk of leukemia and other cancers. The reaction to form benzene is increased in the presence of heat or light.

Personal trainer analysis #3

Artificial coloring – there have been connections with cancer-causing chemicals. I realize this statement could be made for almost any product, so let’s look at it from a different view. Why add extra chemicals into the system which are unneeded?

There are many studies which will send you on a wild goose chase trying to figure out what is true and what is not with certain chemicals.  The jury may still be out on the effects of Aspartame but keep in mind that besides weight gain, soda has certain ingredients which will affect your body on the smallest level.  You are only as strong as your weakest link.
 Limit the amount of soda you drink in a week and increase the amount of water and teas you consume. Add fresh pieces of fruit into your water, and make your tea the night before and put it in the refrigerator. Create the habit and feel the difference.

By: Kirill Vaks
Fitness and exercise specialist
BA, CSCS, ACSM-cpt, NFPT-sns 
 

Suggested articles:
* Eat with purpose: 4 Steps
* Are you using the right equipment?
Suggested video:
* Plank variations

 

Take action… Now! 

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Training Aspects Personal Training and Sports Performance:

Training Aspects’  personal trainers and sports performance coaches want you to accomplish your goals. You, as the personal training client, are a reflection of our personal training and group training methods! We are here to help you accomplish all of your personal training goals!  Our main training focus are people looking to increase performance, lose weight , lose body fat and increase lean muscle. Whether you live in Cherry HillHaddonfield,Marlton, or any of the other surrounding areas we are here to help you Move, Look and feel as you’ve always desired…

Visit us:
910 Haddonfield-Berlin rd.
Voorhees, Nj 08043


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