How To Build The Body Of Your Dreams
I started to play golf this summer and after reading countess books and talking with great golfers on the subject I realized that the short game is what's really important in knocking off strokes in your game and were most people need to work on. Yet when you go to the driving range 95% of people are using their driver trying to get an extra 10 yards on there shot and the putting green is empty. It reminded me of the fitness world and peoples desire to get the body they want.
I was always a scrawny kid and I was just meant to be one. A true ectomorph. I sometimes wonder what I would have looked like if I never started working out at a young age, probably something that resembles a rake.
When I started competing in bodybuilding, I was getting killed by guy's that had a bigger frame and way more muscle especially in the legs than I did. My challenge was always to build muscle. And there were so many experts that praised different techniques, methods, progressions that I would try them all till I found one that worked for me.
The problem is that building muscle doesn't happen over night it takes at least 8 weeks to start noticing the effect of the workout. You can't judge it on how sore you are because that's only side effect of a new stimulus. You can't judge it what you look like a few day's later because that's just inflammation. So how was I to judge the effects of different programs?
Those that knew me when I was competing knew that every 4 weeks I would go get my body fat tested with calipers and I would also measure the circumference of specific body parts with a measuring tape. Because this way I could measure the fat content and the circumference of a body part I wanted to grow. So I had a measure and it was time to put in a good 3 years of work.
What I noticed as time went on was that programs that I would put more weight on the bar, like 10 sets of 3 repetitions would have a much larger effect on building muscle than 3 sets of 10 repetitions were the weight would be lower. Yet at the time the experts were saying 10 repetitions was the ideal repetition for muscle gain. I wasn't very strong for 1-5 repetitions so I didn't enjoy doing it and I much preferred doing 10 repetitions. But I stuck with it.
After 1 year of squatting with brutally heavy weight week after week, I won the Canadian Championships with the best legs on stage.
Which brings me to my big point. Focusing, and I mean being laser focused on what you're not good at that will have the largest impact on the outcome of the situation even though you may despise it (at first) will get you to your goal.
Now keep in mind, everyone is different. We have a different ratios of muscle fiber types, different genetic pre disposition to growth in certain body parts, different hormonal profiles, different metabolisms, different length of limbs making some muscles grow better than others, different postures that allow for better mechanics to lift while inhibiting others. Were just not all the same
Take Chris for example; Chris is the total opposite of me. He looks at a salad and starts gaining fat, he's a pure endomorph and in fact as a kid he used to eat chips and grab the wish chips and wish he was skinny. He was meant to be fatter than me. Chris was an experience lifter, he could bench press over 315 pounds for reps but when one day he decided to compete in his first ever bodybuilding show, the training would change. We started to train like the opposite body type that he was used too. You see, most people work on what they are good at and neglect the stuff that's hard for them. In Chris's case we focused the workouts on high repetitions. Jumping circuits, push ups, stairs, 100 repetition sets. Chris hated every second of it. We developed a great love/hate relationship to the point where I even told him off one day, and then we hugged it out.
The point is, Chris went on and won the Ontario championships in his first ever show and all the hard work and all the focus on his weakness paid off.
So take it or leave it. But being laser focused on your weakness that has the greatest impact on your end result while having a way to measure the progress along the way is the most powerful concept I've learned. Watch out Tiger Woods I'm coming for you! (hahaha, I wish)