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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

 

Before/After

Before/After

 

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The Art of Picking Up Girls at the Gym.

how-to-get-fitI’ve had many requests from desperate men asking me to write this blog, and yes–it’s a guide to picking up girls at the gym.

Not as easy as it seems, by the way.

This guide is going to take you through each and every type of female that enters the gym and how to approach her the correct way.

Well, there is no one correct way, but there are certainly wrong ways, which I will point out to you.

Cockiness aside, I wouldn’t say I’m “bad” at picking up girls at the gym, but I’m alright.

As you will soon find out, there are so many different types of girls that enter the gym. It’s hard to tell who’s there to get toned or get boned.

Anyways, shall we begin??

There are four types of girls that go to the gym:

There’s the girl who wears tight spandex and a tight tank top that you see entering the gym but never again because she disappears to the yoga studio or the zumba moomba room. She’s the kind of girl that you wish to watch working out, but she’s more focused and into those classes that are offered. Some advice, forget about her. Not going to happen.

Next there is the silent type. The girl that wears an old, baggy t-shirt and is locked into her music. She’s the type of girl that is not interested in socializing, so you can also forget about her. If she wanted to be bothered by you, she would have at least worn some make up or something semi-attractive, something to give you a sign. She’s either taken or plays for the other team. Try again.

The next breed is the social butterfly. Now this is the girl that you want to be focusing on. She’s the one that’s always talking to someone and smiling and looking fantastic. Take advantage of this and help her out.

The next and last type of girl is what I like to call the “brainteaser”. This is the type of girl that shows a little bit of all the qualities of the above women. This type is extremely difficult to read, so I suggest you lay low and just play your game. Play it simple and don’t let it bother you. Just focus on your workout and make eye contact when possible, and I promise it’ll work. The time will come and you’ll know.

So those are basically the four types of girls that you may encounter at the gym or at your local fitness hole.

Now there are the right things to say to a girl at the gym and then there are wrong and just plain stupid things to say to girls at the gym. Listen up meatheads–no girl wants to hear about your tri’s or bi’s, how many reps youve done, and they certainly aren’t interested in your criticism.

One thousand one, one thousand two....

One thousand one, one thousand two….

You just need to relax and set a non-threatening tone. If you see that she’s doing a workout wrong, calmly approach and offer some help or show her an alternative workout. This is a very sensitive subject and it can go south in a flash.

WARNING: If the subject does go south, the best thing you can do is faint, run away, or be a man and apologize and offer your assistance. You can also say you’re a certified personal trainer and make her feel dumb. That’s always fun!

You DO NOT want to stare, criticize, creep, lurk, wet-your-lips, stare, stare or stare.

I cannot stress that enough. You can glimpse, or if you make eye contact, smile. Positive vibes helps a lot.

A major plus would also be to be friendly with trainers and the staff at the gym. Girls feel less threatened when they see you’re having fun and laughing with the staff or just your “gym buddies”. Make the environment around you positive and happy. It can only help your case.

I certainly have my “gym crew”. We laugh, we have fun and our vibes and good humor certainly rubs off on others at the gym. One of my really good friends is a trainer at the gym I go to and when people see us joking and having a good time, it sparks a ripple effect of conversations in the gym. It’s contagious.

Now, once you’ve mastered all of the above and you’ve got a girl’s attention and your chatting and “gym buddies”, you want to be very careful because “gym buddies” can EASILY lead into the “friend zone.” You need to watch what you say. Small talk is KEY. I would try to refrain from personal talk at this point in the game. Wait until you actually ask her out on a date, then you can get personal. Right now you’re just planting the seed and working day-to-day on just initiating conversations that are light and friendly and non-threatening. You can approach her at the water fountain, or at the stretching area or even at a machine that she’s waiting for.

Every girl is different, so you might want to wait a few days till you initiate something more. You don’t want to wait too long because someone may be one step ahead of you.

But all in all, it’s the gym and you’re mainly there for one reason and one reason only and that’s to look like me, which is nearly impossible.

Hope you enjoyed my words of wisdom.

Peace. Love. Protein. @CP

@AndrewBrauny

 
6 Comments

Posted by on January 22, 2013 in The Brauny Take

 

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