Summer is here and inevitably you’ll end up at the beach! The great news is that you don’t have to sacrifice a workout in order to spend a day soaking up some Summertime. As you pack up your snacks – my favorite is Promax Fit ‘n Crisp! – be sure to bring along one set of 5 or 8 pound dumbbells and a yoga mat. Don’t waste a minute… when you arrive at the beach, immediately hydrate and complete this workout. I promise you will enjoy the rest of your beach day so much more knowing that you accomplished a great workout.
Set out your yoga mat in the sand to serve as a foundation for the following moves. Then, jog lightly up and down the beach for 5-10 minutes to prepare your metabolism for effective strength training. After you’re warmed up, glistening, and breathing harder, perform the following moves in a row, completing the noted repetitions. Rest one minute and then complete another round of the moves. Aim for 2-5 complete rounds based on your current fitness level and goals. After you’ve completed your workout, cool down and promote recovery by walking up and down the beach for another 5-10 minutes. Be sure to follow your workout with a snack that includes protein. (This is a great time for that Promax Fit ‘n Crisp!) This will help you to recover and ward off muscle soreness!
Sumo Squats – 15 reps
Stand with feet slightly wider than shoulder width. Hold dumbbells at your shoulders. Naturally allow yourself to drop down into a squat. Push into your heels to return to the starting position.
Alternating Reverse Lunges – 20 reps
Begin with feet together and dumbbells at your sides. Take a large step backward and use your front leg to lower you into a reverse lunge position. Push into the front heel and return to the starting position. Repeat the movement on the other leg and continue repeating. Each lunge is 1 rep.
Neutral Grip Overhead Press – 15 reps
Stand with your feet hip distance apart and abs drawn inward. Place the dumbbells in front of your shoulders with your palms facing each other. Keeping this palm orientation, push the dumbbells up ending directly over your shoulder joint. Return to the starting position and repeat.
Bent Arm Side Raise – 15 reps
Stand with your feet hip distance apart and abs drawn in. Arms are at your sides, bring the dumbbells forward, into a bicep curl, but stopping when the elbow gets to 90 degrees with palms facing each other. This is your arm starting position. From here, open your arms outward to the sides so that your elbow ends directly out from your shoulder with your upper arm paralell to the ground. Return to the starting position and repeat.
Sky Reach Crunch – 30 reps
Lying on your yoga mat, hold one dumbbell in the air directly over your chest, up towards the sky. From here, contract your abs and lift your torso upward reaching the dumbbell high towards the sky. Lift up high enough so that your shoulder blades come off the yoga mat. Lower back to the starting position, keeping the dumbbell over your chest, and repeat.
from Proamx DOer Chase Erwin
I just recently competed in the Kentucky Derby Men’s physique show in Louisville and took second, which automatically qualified me for the NPC Junior National Bodybuilding Championship. Competing in front of a crowd and showing off all your hard work is the fun part. All the “magic” occurs the days and weeks before.
Now many of you may just place everything into bodybuilding when you hear physique show. While they all happen during the same show, physique is much different.
One of the major differences is that in physique we wear board shorts instead of posing trunks.
Instead of having a posing routine we have 3 quarter turns that we make, showing off the physique in a relaxed state. The judges are looking for an athletic frame as opposed to overall muscle mass, which is what they look for in Bodybuilding.
I have been asked by several people in the past about what goes on in these preparation weeks and decided I would give some insight into what I do when beginning to prepare for a bodybuilding or physique show.
First off, I have to pick a show. Without this step it would kind of be hard to compete. This step also gives me insight as to when I will begin dieting. For me it was 12 weeks of steady dieting to get down to the body fat percentage (BF%) I needed to be for the show. Find the show and then next is SIGN UP. A lot of people will start to diet for a show they “want” to do, but a few weeks into the diet they stop and have nothing to keep them accountable.
So sign up and get ready to prepare.
Once I have my timeframe I begin to plan. I plan out my training sessions, my macronutrient break down for the coming weeks and my liquid intake. Without some kind of plan I would be setting myself up for setbacks before I even started. So get a plan and make it reasonable. Nothing cracks me up more than the guys and girls who plan to do a 180 during their cutting phase of the diet.
When I plan out my diet, I never limit myself on food choices. I simply set my protein, carbohydrates, fats and fiber that I will consume in a given day. The numbers I set are all based around the activity level of the different days.
During a diet I typical keep my protein level at 1.2-1.4 grams per pound of bodyweight. My carbohydrates are always higher on days I lift weights and low to none on days that I do not. My fat stays between 40-60 grams a day on workout days and around 80 grams on rest days. I have one carbohydrate re-feed day a week. On this day I triple my carbohydrate intake in order to refill my body’s glycogen stores and to maintain a high metabolism during the dieting process. As the diet gets farther and farther, I begin to remove carbohydrate every other week, while maintaining high protein and medium fat.
As far as training goes I stick to my strength program I use all year. This program focuses on a major complex barbell lift every day. These lifts are the squat, deadlift, bench press, and standing shoulder press. During the cutting phase I will typically add in a couple more accessories lifts each day to help bring up my body’s weak points.
One of the questions I get most often is “how much cardio do you do?”
The answer… none.
Shocking, I know, but if you have a proper diet and a well-structured strength based lifting program, you will never need cardio to low your body fat. I have seen it and I have trained many clients the same way with the same results, stronger individuals with lower body fat, never having log countless hours on the treadmill for subpar results.
So, I continue this routine all the way up until about a week out from the show. Going into the last week I will typical do my last strength based workout the Tuesday of show week. That Wednesday and Thursday are all circuit based routines in which I am trying to rid the muscle of any stored up glycogen that may be left.
Once these are all done, most folks will begin filling their muscle glycogen stores in order to get a “pump” on stage. The amount of carbohydrates is different for each person, I typically go for about 250 grams of carbohydrates over the Thursday and Friday, but I am conservative. I know people who will eat whole pizzas if they feel they are too carbohydrate depleted going into the show.
Here are a few things to keep in mind if you are thinking about doing your first show. If you are competing in an NPC show, you will need an NPC card. This card is good for any shows in the calendar year and cost $100 dollars. Along with the NPC card each show will have an entry fee. This ranges anywhere from $60 to $150 and need to be sent in a few weeks before the show. The last thing and probably the most important thing is tanning. A tan can make or break you. It doesn’t matter how much hard work you have put in if you don’t have a DARK tan. Without that dark tan the lights from the stage will wash you out and you will appear to have no muscle definition. This tan can be bought and applied by someone at your home. But I prefer to get the competition spray tan at the competition. These cost between $75 and $150. Wear baggy black clothes when getting one of these and be prepared to handle sweat so that the tan doesn’t run. Also, if you are staying in a hotel, make sure to bring your own sheets and towels. This will allow you to move around and not get your tan all over the sheets or towels.
This is the basic overview of what goes on in the days and weeks before a competition and in future articles I will overview how a show goes and what to expect if you are getting into your first one.
For more information on Chase’s ab workout click here.
from Promax Fitness Ambassador, Joel Harper
1. Body Fat Competition. Gather some friends, have one expert take the measurements and see who can lose the most inches in one month. Set the wager and the winner takes all!
2. Wash your car by hand. Don’t have a car? Neither do I. Join a local charity that is hosting a car wash to raise money. It is a great way to tone your arms and get those squats in, while you do some good and meet new people.
3. Push-Up/Sit-Up Contest. 100 push-ups and 200 sit-ups is the goal. Gather those friends again, and when you can’t do anymore push-ups, switch to sit-ups. But… whoever switches the LEAST… wins!
4. Are you thinking of going Greener? Take your “Green Living” to a whole new level and participate in an eco-friendly event. Swim, run, ride and recycle! Look for an eco-friendly event in your area here.
5. Hire an expert personal trainer. It is worth every penny. Have them to take you through their most intense workout. This will get you OUT of your comfort zone, break up your routine and get you IN shape.
6. The Imaginary Chair Contest. See who can sit the longest. Make sure your legs are in right angles and you are against a sturdy wall. This is a great way to find out who’s the warrior. You may be surprised!
7. Join a team in a favorite sport that you haven’t played in a while. It is a fantastic way to create a community by finding people who like to be pushed to the next level. Every city has social events and they are very easy to find online.
8. Take a dance class. It can work muscales that have been dormant, improve your coordination, and you can break a serious sweat.
9. Run or ride your bike between errands. Make a list of all those “TO-DOs” that you can get done by running/riding from one to the next. Grab your favorite Promax bar, backpack and get going!
10. Take your weekly catch-up with friends outside. Rather than chatting inside on the phone or couch, take a walk or jog together and catch up!