Tag Archives: Indiana

Chest Day Rest Day

“Lie down on this bench and push that bar upwards.” That’s a chest day for y’all, and those are actually great instructions for most chest workouts.  

 (Be a bodybuilder, not a weightlifter video)

While necessary for a strong physique, people often overuse chest days, leading to a disproportionate body. If your chest is stronger than your back, Disney fanatics will worship you as The Hunchback of Notre Dame (too mean?).


Chest workouts are easy with their lack of conditioning prerequisites, since it’s not hard to push something while you’re lying or sitting down. Whether done with free weights or by a machine, flat, incline, and decline bench presses require that resting support. The same goes with pectoral fly exercises. A lot of people perform standing cable fly variations, but that’s shitty if it’s the one I have to refer to as “the standing chest exercise.” 


People seem to measure each other’s strength by how much a person benches. That’s completely false. Even though I’m Jewish, I hope for next Christmas that Santa will shut those people up. Most fat people can bench more than me, because they’re fat and heavy. Simply put, fat people bench a lot, because they’re fat and heavy. Their bodyweight/bench ratio sucks, though.


Bench pressing is a narrow lift, hitting mostly chest, while indirectly working shoulders and triceps. Full body lifts, such as deadlifts, squats, and STANDING rows, demand more physicality by also requiring your back, quadriceps, hamstrings, shoulders, arms, traps, and core.


This is all because Chest Day is a Rest Day. I’m living proof of that. Overloading chest workouts is a fantastic idea for lazy people like BigBerg.  A couch potato can bench press while being a couch potato. Rest on a couch or a bench…it’s still resting!  


GreenbergRippedPicBut when done right, chest days can enhance your physical abilities. So allow me the honor of sharing just a few of my dos and don’ts for chest workouts, followed by two different chest-working routines.


Chest Days Should Not Be Your Focus


There’s a time and place for chest days. Registering for chest workouts should be done for the same reasons why college students register for blow off classes: they’re easy credits to earn and help ease the steam as you exercise your mind in the difficult classes.


Chest day is a blow off day and should be utilized to recover from the more difficult days, while earning some extra, easier workout credits at the same time. My favorite time to work chest is the day before longs runs, such as my 17-miler last Sunday (7:36 minute per mile average, baby). This allowed me to still workout the day before running, while also resting most of my body. You can do the same thing with arm workouts, but you know that already.


To toughen up chest workouts, take advantage of fatiguing that upper body by circuiting the hell out of your chest lifts, coupled with pushup variations. I prefer 8-15 rep-ranges for my chest workouts. If that’s a no-go due to your hard-on for heavy lifting, make rep pyramids, such as 15, 10, 6, 6, 10, 15.  


The 90-Degree Form IS More Bullshit Than Actual Bull Shit


Today, you’re going to end that “bring the bar 90-degres down” crap. Why the hell would you do anything halfway? Half-ass form will lead to half-ass results, and you will not be satisfied. It’s like driving to Potbelly to purchase a chicken sandwich for lunch, stopping midway, saying, “fuck it,” and then driving home without that lunch. 


So take those presses down to your chest every single time, unless there’s some injury or medical reason (that’s my disclaimer). This may require dropping the weight, but do it right and you’ll be seeing those gains in no time. Plus, you’ll look better!


Bouncing The Weight On Your Chest Is Bad News Bears


Bars and dumbbells are not bouncy balls, so a lifter shouldn’t bounce it on his chest to gain momentum per each press. The hardest part of benching is pressing the weight from your chest to halfway up, and that unnecessary momentum disallows maximizing your strength. Rather, you want the kind of momentum that gets your ass in the gym nearly every day, not the cheating kind that bakes shit reps faster than an Easy Bake Oven. BOOM.  


Proper form increases difficulty and forces you to use lighter weight, but the results are better. So instead, touch the bar to your chest and pause for a second. By preventing yourself from bouncing the weight, your chest muscles will finally have the chance to press without assistance. Give your chest the opportunity it deserves, and it won’t let you down.


Pressing Like A Speed Demon Is Pointless


Applicable to any lift for any muscle, slow reps produce more pleasing results. I’m not going to cite stuff or bullshit you, because I don’t have data. But what I do have is knowledge from trial and error. Fast reps go in the error section, while slow reps go in the success section. Slow reps burn more, there’s more contraction, and muscles will build at substantially higher rate.


So when you’re pressing, count no less than 3-seconds down and then 3-seconds up. And for each pectoral fly, when you bring the weights in, hold it there for no less than 3-seconds. Soreness will be a bitch, but after a full recovery you’ll be stronger the next round of chest.  Don’t count this way every time, as you should mix it up every few weeks, but this count serves as a good base.




Moral of the story: Chest Days make for good Rest Days. They’re useful, but not useful enough to become a priority. Don’t let your chest workouts mess you up. Do it right, nail your back, legs, and shoulders, focus on those full body lifts, and you’ll walk strong with a better posture than any chest day junkie.


Below are two sample chest workouts, one a solo chest day and the other paired with back. Expect some sort of leg workout rave next week. Until then, thanks for reading and go hit the gym. And man, I really don’t want to study for these fuckin’ law school finals.


Use your flaws in a positive way to exceed your potential – LeanBerg.



Chest and Back

  • 6 Round Circuit
    • Dumbbell Flat Bench Press while doing a Leg Lift with each Press 20, 15, 12, 10, 8, 6 reps
    • Standing Bar Rows with Overhand Grip 20, 15, 12, 10, 8, 6 reps
    • Lat Pulldown Machine 10-15 reps
  • 4 Round Circuit
    • Bar Incline Bench Press 15, 12, 10, 8 reps
    • Standing Dumbbell Rows with Underhand Grip 10-15 reps
    • Dumbbell Flies on Flat Bench 20, 15, 12, 10 reps
  • 4 Round Superset
    • Reverse Fly Machine 12-15 reps
    • Standing Cable Flies with Underhand Grip 12-20 reps
  • 3 Sets
    • Chinups till Failure (do as many as you can, then rest a minute)
  • Run 3 Miles (LOVE CARDIO BABY)


Chest Day Rest Day

  • 6 Round Superset
    • Dumbbell Incline Bench Press 12-20 reps rounds 1-3, then 6-10 reps rounds 4-6
    • Dumbbell Flies on Decline Bench 15-20 reps rounds 1-3, then 8-12 reps rounds 4-6
  • 4 Round Circuit:
    • Bar Flat Bench Press 10-15 reps
    • Abs – Weighted Lying Down Legs Lifts with HANDS TO SIDES, not under your ass (hold dumbbell between ankles) 20-30 reps
    • Pec Fly Machine 15, 10, 10, 15 reps
    • Abs – Frog Situps 30-50 reps
    • Diamond Pushups till Failure
  • As Fast As You Can (hit total number of reps as fast as possible, only resting when you absolutely must, and make sure to touch your chest to the floor each time)
    • Decline Pushups with Feet on Ball 100 reps





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Unconventional Mentality


Hi. My name is Jordan Greenberg, I am currently finishing up my second year at The John Marshall Law School, and I had a fat stage in my life.



From this before/after picture, there’s a fat, insecure guy on the left and a lean, more confident guy on the right, clearly capturing the extremes at both ends of the spectrum.


Was I strong? Hell yes. That was the strongest I’ve ever been in my life. Of course you can naturally lift heavier when you weigh so much more. But pound-for-pound, I was absolute garbage, and this was the most out of shape I’ve ever been in.

But that’s not the end of things, because I’m lean and shredded in the after picture. I had to get there somehow, and it wasn’t easy one bit. I’m so grateful that I reached an extremely low, self-depreciating point, because it forced me to find a way to put all that aggression into something that would eventually change my life forever.

So, can I please share a brief overview of my story? Thanks!

There are actually two stories: 1) BigBerg’s Story and 2) LeanBerg’s Story. Each version of myself possessed a different mentality, so they respectfully deserve their own stories.

BigBerg’s Story

A few months before my junior year at Indiana University, I hit an all-time low. I literally swam through an ocean of negative thoughts every damn day. I was getting in stupid fights, boozing too much, smoking cigarettes, chewing tobacco when I was not smoking cigarettes, eating Burger King like it was my full-time job, eating McDonald’s when I was not eating Burger King, and I think you get the point now.

There once was an extended weekend when I didn’t even leave my apartment. Luckily, I got some exercise by walking to my door to generously tip the pizza guy. However, like any short-lived, glorified moment such as opening your door to see a smiley, bicycle helmet-wearing pizza guy graciously hand you 3,000 calories of greasy crap, all temporary things come to an end.

Like any fat person, I would go through phases where I thought I was going to get back into fitness and health. I’d try these temporary workout plans and diets, only to see zero results. Something was fudged up in my head. I didn’t eat too many paint chips as a child so it’s not that, but I lacked dedication.

Motivation needs to be permanent if you’re seeking a lifestyle change. Temporary motivation will only change you temporarily, and then you’ll go back to being that person you hated. Yeah, I would prance like a bitch on the treadmill and try to bench a shit load of weight, but that did nothing. Additionally, I thought I could cheat more on eating if I spent more time at the gym. That’s bullshit. Period.

My workout attempts failed, my diet attempts failed, my don’t drink to blackout attempts failed, my don’t fight people attempts failed, my don’t love nicotine so much attempts failed, and for the worst attempt grand finale, I failed to be happy.

Special Note To Dieting: while I regret to announce this, the Fresco Menu at Taco Bell is not healthy, placing fruit in ice cream is not smart thinking, McDonald’s salads are not good for you, and cutting calories does not mirror decreasing your daily desert dosage. You need to cut the right calories, and everything I did at this time was the opposite.

I would constantly get pissed off and blame other people. But finally, a big influence in my life pointed out that I was the common denominator in every occurrence. That was hard to soak in, but it was true. Finally for once, I was angry at myself. I needed to be angry at myself to this degree in order to light the fire and get that motivation going.

This sentence is my transition to my second story.

LeanBerg’s Story


So now it’s summer, and I’m still fat. LeanBerg doesn’t begin when I become lean. It was never about that nor will it ever be.

It’s All ABOUT MENTALITIY, and LeanBerg was beginning to emerge immediately after I finally took responsibility. You cannot rely on these workout and diet plans to fix you. Sure, they can improve your physique for some time, but they’ll likely not become a ritual in your lifestyle. I needed the latter, not just some physical improvement. I needed a mentality fix more than anything.

The event that stands out most is when I signed up for a private boxing lesson nearby my house. I didn’t put much thought into it. I just decided to sign up, and that was that.

I go in at 7:00AM (that’s sleeping-in for me today), and the guy hands over a jump rope, hits the buzzer, and says I have two minutes until my next breather.

I couldn’t do it. I literally could not jump rope for two minutes during a warm-up and that really got to me. It was pathetic and symbolizes how pathetic I allowed myself to get. It’s just 120 seconds, and it was too hard.

Something happened that day where I realized I’ve been such a pussy lately. I finally acknowledged that I had to go All IN and work hard for something other than placing the perfect fast-food order. I needed to stand toe-to-toe with a physical challenge and not let it get the best of me.


There’s a major correlation with fitness, health and wellbeing. That’s why they’re grouped together. Not so your Health teachers could feel good that their textbooks are dense, but because they really do correlate.

I, now LegBerg, figured that if I kept working out and dieted by my own research rather than looking up FADs, something good would rise, and it would get me to believe in myself, helping with everything else life offers. I didn’t know it’d lead to an intense addiction that I’m really passionate and proud about, but hey, “It could happen.” (That was my Angels In The Outfield reference, starring Danny Glover).

It’s been uphill from there, and I’ll bullet point it, since I haven’t shown off my formatting skills yet. Think of the training montages in the Rocky movies while you read through this.

  • That summer in 2009, I cut around 60-70lbs just from intense boxing, building up my running, and barely drinking alcohol, and ACTUALLY eating healthy. I did not eat fast-food, limited my carbs, ate lots of lean protein, and didn’t binge eat at night. Those are the basics, and they were enough then.
  • While studying abroad in London for three months, I literally ran 6-8 miles six or seven days a week and became a force at running. The runner’s high is real!
  • In summer 2010, I ran the Soldier Field 10 Mile in a 7:12 minute per mile average. The was a big one, because I made the commitment to run that at my grandfather’s funeral, so thank the lord I didn’t bail on that one. That wouldn’t have been nice and would have resulted in a lifetime of cranky karma.
  • I then finally got into lifting weights. I have such a passion for weightlifting and have developed my own style that I’ll guarantee works for anyone. I’m all about high intensity supersets/circuits with middle to high rep ranges, every set till failure, usually working multiple muscles a day, often topped off with running a few miles at the end. Conditioning is more important than strength. Fat people, like BigBerg, are strong. Anyone can lift weights, but not everyone can do it in a way that forces topnotch conditioning.
  • Currently, I’m training for the 2013 Chicago Marathon, still lifting five or six days a week, and happy as can be. There are still setbacks, but that goes with anything. I ran 16 miles this week in a 7:50 minute average and know I can do more.

Like I said, it’s ALL ABOUT MENTALITY. Everything put together, from losing fat to jump roping to weightlifting to running to dieting to not drinking as much and more, they all are just factors into becoming happy, altering your lifestyle for the better, and changing your mentality permanently.

Fitness-wise, when you put your body through hell, suffering excruciating exhaustion, sweat and fatigue, the end result is that you know you just went ALL IN for the day and nobody can ever take that away from you. It makes you believe in yourself, and when that’s in your mind, you’re an unstoppable force. Any strength gain or advance in definition is a bonus.

After finally jump roping for two minutes and years of trial and error figuring this stuff out, I know what works. I write every single one of my workout plans and do it all my way. I have final cut, and every decision is pursuant to my discretion. As for dieting, the most important work is done in the kitchen. If you eat shit, you’ll become shit, no matter how hard you workout. Get ready to hear that a lot.

I went ALL IN, and I have not been out since. I love what I do, but the best part of it now is sharing with people and also learning from others. Are you ready to go ALL IN too?

1 Comment

Posted by on April 17, 2013 in Unconventional Mentality


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Brauny Take: My Supplements

 This week, I’m going to talk about supplements and vitamins.

 Which ones I take?

 Which are good to take?

 Which ones are full of s&#t?

 All will be answered in this take.

So let’s start with me. And let’s talk about which supplements and vitamins I take on a daily basis. I used to take whey more than I do now but supplements will always be apart of my workout routine. I hate when I get used to supplements so I like to take a break here and there for a few weeks and let my body rest.

I’m a big fan of pre-workouts. I’ve literally tried them all. You name it; odds are I’ve probably tried it (courtesy of Campus Protein). But as of now, on a daily basis, I wake up and take a multivitamin (Opti-Men by Optimum), which is one of my favorites. I like to switch between that and Centrum.That is my morning routine but when it comes to mid day, sometimes I have a  hydro-whey protein shake to satisfy my hunger as a snack or I have a protein bar if I don’t have time. I ONLY use Hydro-whey by Optimum. It is simply the best protein, and I tried them all. I started with a blend like myofusion but I wanted the leanest protein out there so I swtiched to Gold Standard. Then when Campus Protein offered Hydrowhey, it became my permanent protein. The chocolate tastes like heaven, especially when mixed with fruit! Personal favorite!

Recommendation: Throw some fruit, like berries or a banana, in the blender with some ice water and a few scoops of whey protein and I guarantee that you will love it! It’s a great meal replacement if you don’t have much time to eat or you need a quick pick-me-up.

Before I workout, I almost ALWAYS take a pre-workout. It’s just the only way to really get me going and give me that workout pump that we all love so much. Right now I’m taking Jacked 3D micro by USPlabs. It’s actually one of my favorites. It comes in a very small container, but don’t let that fool you. It’s extremely powerful and gives you a ton of energy. Consume 30 minutes before working out and I promise you will feel the bolt of energy. It has NO creatine. I’m not a huge fan of creatine because it really hurts my stomach so that is why Micro is best for me.

I then consume another hydro-whey protein shake. Always within one hour after my workout. Then before bed I usually pop 1-2 ZMA capsules. Through government research, taking ZMA before you go to bed promotes a better night sleep and increases natural testosterone. It’s a great way to recover and build your muscles.

So that’s usually my daily intake of supplements. I’ve cut down a lot recently because I wanted to give my body a little rest. Everybody is different but this is the Brauny take, this is what I take to keep my body in the best shape.

Most supplements are personal, I think. You could argue that each pre workout, for instance, are the same. Except for a few ingredients here and there, most pre workouts do the same but are different in regards of strength. Some may just have more caffeine and creatine than others, but when push comes to shove, they basically all have the same outcome. All you have to do is try several pre workouts and find which are the best for you. Thats why I love when CP delivers with all their free samples! I’d listen to Campus Protein for advice on supplements because they are extremely knowledgeable on the subject, myself included.

Well, that’s all for this week and see you next time!

Much love @CP



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Posted by on October 23, 2012 in The Brauny Take


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The Brauny Take: Cheat Days

Cheat Day.

2 words that simply mean so much to a health freak like me.

Just like anyone, I’m guilty of a cheat day here and there but not as much as I should. If you workout as much as I do, then I should be enjoying a cheat day per week. I consider a “cheat day” to consist of any meal that I wouldn’t normally eat, like pizza, hamburger or Chinese food. All are fine in moderation but shouldn’t be abused if you want to develop and sustain a healthy lifestyle.

A BIG part of my “cheat day” is alcohol. I coordinate my food schedule to allow myself to consume a lot of alcohol as my “cheat food”. But besides alcohol, if I’m going to “cheat” my lifestyle, then I’m going to cheat with something that has some kind of nutrition in it, like protein or something that’s beneficial. I NEVER eat candy, fried or buttered s#*t. There’s just nothing beneficial in any of those, so what’s the point? It’s a waste of calories and space in my stomach.

My last “cheat day” was my long weekend visit to my alma mater, Indiana University, for homecoming. It was such an amazing weekend and it was so great to see everyone. But it wasn’t a very fulfilling weekend in the sense that I didn’t go to the gym or eat healthy the entire weekend. From Thursday to Sunday, I was completely in a “cheat day” haze and was distracted by the booze and BBQ to even think about working out. It was well worth it though and I owed it to myself to take a little vacation away from the gym. I wanted to soak up IU and enjoy a nice college weekend with my brothers.

But it was great to get back to my normal routine the following week. Remember to always work hard during the week and take a well deserved “cheat day” when one presents itself. (Make sure it doesnt become a “cheat weekend!”)

And lastly remember to have a cheat meal that’s beneficial in some way. Gain some nutrients so all is not lost.

Cheat but be smart!

Eliminate the sugar. It’ll help. I’m pretty sure of that!

Well, that’s all…. until next week.

Peace out cheaters!

Thanks CP!


1 Comment

Posted by on October 16, 2012 in The Brauny Take


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Pushed Back but Never Knocked Down

My good friends and former roommates over at Campus Protein asked me if I’d help contribute to a guest blog for the company. And while I know next to nothing about blogging and would consider myself as knowledgeable about supplements as the average fraternal brothern, the company has had too large of an impact on me, my family and closest friends for me not to write a testimonial.

I have seen the company go through 3 years of growth starting from a simple, clear idea to transition into the premier online supplement platform targeted towards the college students that it is today. The key to its success: “best prices, with reliable and unbeatable shipping times.” And while this format targets the college students who flock to any $2 Tuesday for a drink, it obviously has universal appeal as a business model. The college student needs Campus Protein; when they are done with their supplements and want to re-up on their supply, CP allows them to do it same day and stay within that “college budget.”

My entire frat used Campus Protein in some capacity whether it was for the best deal on supplements, vitamins, drinks (even sell a personal favorite in Vita Coco) or strictly to buy one of their tanks. I know everywhere you looked on Spring Break, there was a CP Tank. CEO Russell Saks will not go to the gym without one and Mike Yewdell has a degree in apparel, the tanks are the real deal. Sometimes I wear the tanks because they are so fly, but most recently I used my CP tank as decoration in my new Chi town apartment.

Rockin the Tanks

Campus Protein will always be important to me, but where CP truly landed a special place in my heart was after my dad went through a battle with cancer about 2 years ago. After 8 months and a stretch of radiation and chemotherapy treatments, my dad had lost close to 50 pounds. And while after treatment he was cancer-free, my father was a shell of the person he was physically just a year before. With a new lease on life and the need to get his body back in shape, I asked upon the guys at CP to offer some advice. I needed to help by dad gain back the weight he lost so that he could get back to a healthy weight. The guys had my dad on the best tasting and most effective supplements for what he needed. They offered him mass gainer called Serious Mass. With every order our family placed, they would always take care of my dad. Whether it was free samples or free shakers, they would take the time out to make sure that my father got the best and I will never forget that.  With a new diet, exercise plan and a few supplements from CP my dad had a commitment to fitness that I hadn’t seen out of him before. He’s now back at a healthy weight and will continually give Campus Protein credit for helping him get there. It has been a long journey, but seeing my dad go through that long and painful process, I am so happy to see him healthy today.

Seeing the motivation my father had and his desire to rebuild himself, I couldn’t help but feel inspired. Some people let unexpected life incidents to change them forever. However, my fathers ability to continue through this speed bump in his life has pushed me to become a stronger person. Nothing in my life will compare to what he has gone through but trying my best to live a healthy/intelligent life is all the preparation I could ask for. To paraphrase one of my favorite quotes: “Living your life happy and healthy isn’t a trend or a luxury, its a necessity.”

You don’t have to be a college kid or gym rat to know a great deal and great product. Whether you have relied on supplements for fitness your entire life, want to get in shape for the next spring break or you just want to learn about having a healthier lifestyle, Campus Protein has the products, service, and information to get you what you need.

Repping Campus Protein has always been an honor to me. I am so proud of what these boys have been able to do and I cannot wait to see what comes next for them.

Thanks for hearing my story and hope this motivates some of you to live a healthier life!



Posted by on August 27, 2012 in Guest Blogs


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