Basics Of Bodybuilding

Bodybuilding is a sport of building muscle. Bigger and stronger is the name of the game. One of the great things about bodybuilding is that you can achieve great results with only very basic equipment and a few hours of training three to four times per week.

The key to building bigger and stronger muscles is to keep progressively adding more and more weight over time. Building bigger muscles is about consistent regular training, eating properly, getting plenty of rest, and lots of weight at low repetitions.

As a starting any new exercise program, is important a first check with your physician before starting a bodybuilding program. In the beginning is important that you start slow and learn proper technique. Time and time again professional body builders have said that technique is one of most important aspects of getting a good workout. It might be helpful to schedule a session with a professional trainer in the beginning so you start on the right track. If this is not an option for you there are various instructional books on the subject of bodybuilding. Above all take the time to learn proper technique.

Lifting heavy weight damages muscle fibers. It is only when the muscles repair themselves that they grow larger and stronger. For this reason it is very important that each muscle group is given plenty of rest following each workout. This is why most body builders alternate muscle groups. For example, you might work on your back on Monday, your legs on Tuesday, your chest on Wednesday, and your arms on Friday. Most successful body builders will recommend that you not work a particular muscle group more than twice per week.

The question may come up of whether it is best to use weight machines or free weights. The general consensus is that free weights are your best option for increasing muscle mass. Machines are typically used for isolating muscles and this is something that only professional body builders need to do before contest.

The following are some basic exercises for the major muscle groups.

Chest

1. Flat Bench Press
2. Dips
3. Incline Bench Press

Legs

1. Squats
2. Straight Leg Dead Lifts
3. Leg Press

Back

1. Pull ups
2. Barbell Rows
3. Deadlifts

Biceps

1. Curls
2. Incline curls

Triceps

1. Lying Tricep Extensions
2. Close Grip Bench Press

Shoulders

1. Military Press.

Remember to increase muscle size you will need to progressively increase poundage. Be patient. Overworking your muscles can actually have adverse effects. If you maintain a consistent regular workout routine coupled with proper nutrition and rest you will begin to see results in no time. Keep in mind it is common to see more obvious results initially and in overtime your gains will seem less apparent. This is because your body becomes used to your work out routine and in a sense knows what to expect. It is helpful to keep your body guessing by changing your workout routine on a regular basis.

Increase Your Training Intensity – Partial Repetitions

You can only build muscle tissue if you can generate progressively stronger muscular contractions, so this calls for an emphasis on finding ways to increase exercise intensity. This should not be confused with exercise duration as maximum training intensity will actually shorten the time needed to achieve maximal muscular growth.

In an earlier article I outlined the ways in which you can intensify your training. Here we’ll focus on the role that partial repetitions have to play in intensifying the training effect.

One of the biggest dangers confronting serious bodybuilders is the tendency to overtrain. Bodybuilders at the advanced level must resist the temptation to seek improvement by simply adding more exercises or extra workouts to an already demanding schedule.

One way to maintain progress yet avoid overtraining is to make constructive use of partial repetitions. This allows the introduction of additional intensity without adding significantly to the duration of training. To get the most out of partial repetitions you should follow these simple steps:

1. Use a much heavier weight than you would for the full range version of the same exercise.

2. Perform partial reps only from the halfway stage or mid-point of the exercise.

3. Use this method primarily on lagging body parts.

4. Perform only one exercise for one set per body part.

5. Use only as a supplement to full range movement exercises, not instead of.

Glycemic index diets can help to control blood sugar level

Study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition findings are that assessing a meal using the glycemic index, which lists the quality of carbohydrates contained in many common foods, appears to be a good way to predict the effect a meal will have on blood sugar levels,this is important information for diabetes patients.

Dr. Thomas M. S. Wolever, of the University of Toronto and colleagues examined whether overall carbohydrate content and glycemic index of individual foods, as given in published tables, determined the effects of a realistic mixed meal on the blood sugar in normal subjects.

The team measured the responses to six test meals in 16 subjects in Sydney and eight meals in 10 subjects in Toronto, and then pooled the results. The meals varied in amount of calories, protein, fat, available carbohydrates and glycemic index score.

The blood sugar and insulin responses to the Sydney test meals varied over a 3-fold range. For the Toronto test meals, the blood sugar responses varied over a 2.4-fold range.

The team found no correlation between the blood sugar levels and fat or protein content of the test meal, but there was a significant correlation with carbohydrate content and glycemic index alone, which accounted for 88 percent of the variation in the blood sugar response.

This findings show that the glycemic index works and diabetes patients can use glycemic index diets but should be monitored and use thier prscribed theraphy.

Diabetes Type 1 and Type 2 Weight Loss Nutrition

If you have diabetes you have to be very careful about what you eat. You need to take extra care in managing your blood glucose levels. You can do this by eating healthy, watching your diet, taking medication prescribed by a physician and getting proper exercise.

What foods should you eat? There is a food pyramid for people with diabetes. The Diabetes Food Pyramid divides food into six groups. At the top of the list is fats sweets and alcohol. Since this is the smallest group this tells you to eat very little from this section. The next group is milk, meat, meat substitutes and other proteins. On the pyramid 2 to 3 servings of milk is suggested and 4 to 6oz of meat/protein is mentioned. Then you have your vegetables and fruits. Veggies choose at least 3-5 servings per day and fruits choose at least 2-4 servings a day. The last group which you should eat the most of is breads grains and other starches. You can check with your doctor to get a copy of the diabetes food pyramid to learn more about the correct servings and portion sizes for you.

What is Type 1 Diabetes? This type of diabetes was previously known as juvenile diabetes and is typically diagnosed in children and young adults. The body does not produce insulin. What is insulin? It is a hormone needed to convert starches, sugar (glucose) and other foods into energy. Energy is needed for daily life activities. Type I Diabetes is a chronic condition with no cure, but the outlook for people living with this disease is far better than it was 20 years ago. There has been much advancement in medicine, research and patient education reducing disabling complications and extended the expectancies of life to those without diabetes. In other words people with diabetes 1 can live just as long as people without diabetes with the proper treatment and educating themselves on this disease.

What is Type 2 Diabetes? With type 2 the body does not produce enough insulin or the cell just simply ignores the insulin. Type 2 is the most common form of diabetes. You need insulin in order for the body to be able to use sugar. The basic fuel for your cells is sugar. Insulin takes the sugar from the blood into the cells. When glucose does not go into the cells but builds up in the blood instead it can cause problems. The problems it can cause are over time high glucose levels could hurt your heart, kidneys, nerves and eyes. What are the most common symptoms for adults with Type II Diabetes? The answer is fatigue, blurred vision, thirst and excessive urination. Do you think you may be diabetic? Check with your doctor. With type II diabetes minor weight loss can greatly improve your blood glucose levels.

So remember if you have diabetes please be under a doctors care. Watch what you eat. Limit your sweets, fats and alcohol. You can still eat good tasting foods and there are many diabetic food recipes on the internet. Get on a doctor approved exercise program and keep track of your glucose levels. Learn all you can about your condition so you can take control of it instead of the disease controlling you.

Foods that control diabetes

In 1550 BC, the famous Ebers Papyrus advised treating diabetes with high fiber wheat grains. Not much has changed since then. Plant foods are the drug of choice for treating diabetes. There are large numbers of scientific research findings to confirm the effectiveness of plant foods in managing this disease. Through the centuries, more than 400 plants have been identified, used, and prescribed as diabetic remedies.

Raw onions and garlic have been long been favorite anti-diabetic drugs in Europe, Asia and the Middle East. The vegetable bitter gourd and the herb ginseng have been widely used for treating diabetes since the ancient time in India and China. Common mushroom is widely used in parts of Europe to lower blood sugar. Barely bread is a popular treatment for diabetes in Iraq. Other foods, used in different countries, in the treatment of diabetes include beans, cabbage, cinnamon, coriander seeds, cucumber, fenugreek seeds, Indian gooseberry and lettuce.

All these foods have anti-diabetic properties. Scientific research has confirmed that most of these foods, or their compounds, either lower blood sugar, or stimulate insulin production. Some of the more important foods that help to lower blood sugar or stimulate insulin production in diabetes patients are discussed here.

Artichoke is a tuberous root with a top like a sunflower. This vegetable contains good amounts of potassium, a fair amount of calcium and some iron and sulphur, all of which are needed by the body for maintaining good health.

Artichoke is beneficial in the treatment of diabetes because of its high insulin content. A fully ripe artichoke is said to contain more than two percent of insulin. Ripe artichokes are generally available only during autumn or fall. The insulin is converted into sugar in winter. Artichokes are most effective when eaten raw in salads. It cooking is required; they should be boiled, unpeeled, in a small quantity of water for about 10 minutes. Artichokes can be effectively combined with other vegetables.

Exercise for Diabetics

Exercise for Diabetics

The two most common forms of diabetes are referred to as Type 1 and Type 2. Type 1 diabetes, also known as adolescent diabetes, differs from Type 2 in that the body stops producing insulin altogether. Type 2 diabetes is generally diagnosed in older adults and occurs as the body stops producing enough insulin or the individual becomes resistent to their own insulin.

With either form of diabetes, we lose our ability to adequately untilize sugar. Blood sugar levels increase due to the body’s difficulty in transporting sugar into the cells and out of the blood stream. There are various ways to lower blood sugar levels including exercise, diet, and medications.

Exercise is a very important part of diabetic management for both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetics. For the Type 1 diabetic, regular exercise helps to maintain insulin sensitivity, helps prevent accumulation of excess weight, and increases the use of glucose by muscles, thereby lower blood sugar levels. While there is currently no way to prevent Type 1 diabetes, it may be possible to prevent Type 2 diabetes.

Things to consider when attempting to prevent the onset of Type 2 diabetes are regular exercise, supplementation with vitamins and herbs that help prevent insulin resistance, and proper weight control.

Exercise not only helps directly in diabetic management by lowering blood sugar levels and maintaining insulin sensitivity, but also helps minimize many of the complications that can arise in a diabetic individual. Studies have shown that walking for 30 minutes per day can substantially diminish the possibility of developing Type 2 diabetes.
Diabetics tend to develop circulatory problems and exercise can certainly help lower blood pressure and improve circulation throughout the body. Since individuals with diabetes tend to have poor blood flow to their lower extremities and feet, better circulation is of great benefit.

There are some risks associated with exercise, but the potential benefits greatly outweigh the risks. Since exercise does lower blood sugar levels, people with diabetes should measure their blood sugar both before and after exercising. Since your body uses more sugar while exercising and makes you more sensitive to insulin, there is a risk of blood sugar becoming too low and causing hypoglycemia.

When exercising it is important to let others know that you are diabetic. They should be informed what to do in case of hypoglycemia. You should always carry candy or fruit juice to treat low blood sugar levels should they occur. During and after exercise sessions, you should pay close attention to how you feel since rapid heart beat, increased sweating, feeling shaky, or hunger can signal that your blood sugar levels are becoming too low.

Exercise is a critical part of diabetic management and treatment. Exercise helps blood sugar control when the muscles use more glucose and the body become more sensitive to insulin. Exercise also helps to prevent and minimize common diabetic complications including heart problems, high blood pressure and circulatory deficiencies. All diabetics should include a regular exercise program as part of their overall management plan.

Lower Body Exercises For Beginning Bodybuilders

The lower body contains some of your biggest muscles which are capable of bearing significant weights. The temptation for beginners to go for broke by performing heavy squats should be resisted. To begin with you should concentrate on building the muscles safely by using machines that isolate muscle groups. The squat is an excellent compound exercise that trains numerous lower body muscles but it is one you should learn properly after spending three months strengthening the individual muscles that will be utilized later.

The muscles of the lower body can be divided into five groups:

1. Quads – this is the big muscle group consisting of four muscles at the front of the thigh. These are the primary muscles used when performing exercises such as squats, leg press, lunge and leg extension.

2. Hamstrings – these are the main muscles at the back of the thigh. These are the primary muscles used when performing leg curls.

3. Gluteals – these are the muscles that make up the buttocks.

4. Hip flexors – these are the small muscles at the front of the pelvis that allow you to raise your legs to the front.

5. Calves – these are the two muscles found in the lower leg.

For beginners these muscles should be exercised as follows:

1. Leg press – 1 set of 10-15 reps. This is a useful exercise for the quads but it also works the hamstrings and glutes to a lesser degree.

2. Leg extension – 3 sets of 10-15 reps. This is a useful exercise for adding definition to the quads.

3. Hamstring curl – 3 sets of 10-15 reps. This exercise isolates the hamstrings.

4. Standing calf raise – 3 sets of 10-15 reps. This exercise works the gastrocnemius muscle.

5. Seated calf raise – 3 sets of 10-15 reps. This exercise works the soleus muscle underneath the gastrocnemius muscle.

As with all exercises you need to take care in scheduling specific body parts. To begin with you should incorporate your lower body exercises into a program similar to the one suggested below:

Day 1: Biceps, Back, Abs

Day 2: Hamstrings, Shoulders, Abs

Day 3: Quads, Forearms, Calves

Day 4: Triceps, Chest, Abs

For the first couple of weeks complete one set but then add one set each week to a maximum of three. At the end of three months you will be ready to move on to more intensive intermediate level exercises.

Instantly Increase Your Strength On Every Back Exercise

Do you want a quick, simple and instant way to increase the amount of weight you can lift on virtually every back exercise you perform? Sound too good to be true? I speak the truth, my friend, and the reality is that if you aren’t utilizing this basic piece of gym equipment you’re missing out on some serious muscle size and strength gains. What tool am I talking about?

A pair of lifting straps!

This is such a basic and highly effective piece of equipment yet so many people neglect to use them. For those of you who are unaware, these are basically a set of thick straps made of extremely strong material that are placed around your wrists and then wrapped around the barbell, dumbbell or cable attachment. The purpose of lifting straps is to “eliminate” your grip from the equation by forming a secure connection between your wrist and the weight. If you use these straps properly you can basically hold onto the bar and perform your exercises while expending almost no energy from your forearms.

Why is this so valuable?

Picture this scenario…You’re performing a set of deadlifts (arguably the most powerful muscle-building exercise known to man) with the goal of performing 8 reps. You psych yourself up, grip the weight and clear the bar from the ground. The set is going well, but by the time you reach rep number 5, the strain on your grip is so great that you can no longer hold onto the bar. You’re forced to stop the set because your forearms reached muscular failure.

What exactly happened here?

Well, you gave yourself an amazing forearm workout! Congratulations! Unfortunately you severely limited the amount of muscle stimulation you could achieve on your back, shoulders, legs, and just about every other muscle in your body that the deadlift targets in the process. This is not a good thing!

Lifting straps completely eliminate this problem by making sure that you reach muscular failure in the major muscle groups that you are intending to target rather than on your forearms and grip. They can be used effectively for almost every back exercise or any other lift where the grip is of concern.

The main argument against lifting straps is the idea that they are a “crutch” and will negatively affect the development of grip strength and forearm size. Let’s get real here. What would you prefer, greater muscle mass and strength in your lats and upper back (and just about every other muscle group on your body) or greater ability to crack open a jar of pickles? Take your pick.

The positive effect that lifting straps will have on your overall muscle mass and strength gains will far outweigh any negative effect that they have on your forearms and grip. Besides, you can easily incorporate specific forearm movements into your routine to develop your grip strength and forearm size. If you aren’t using lifting straps already, get on it! You can find them at almost any store that sells sports or fitness equipment or you can order them online. They sell for about 10 or 15 bucks and are well worth the price!

Diabetes Management: Blood Glucose Meters

One of the great things about the Internet is that it’s created a global community for discussions of topics such as diabetes. You’ll find there are a number of forums that will allow you to talk to others facing your situation.

If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with diabetes, one of your first steps will likely be to find a glucose meter. There are some things to keep in mind as you make your decision because this piece of equipment is likely to be part of your life for the foreseeable future.

A glucose meter (or glucometer) is a medical device for determining the approximate amount of glucose in a drop of blood obtained by pricking the skin with a lancet. Glucose meters are portable and designed for use by ordinary people, especially those with diabetes.

There are now dozens of models of glucose meters. Typical features common to most. The average size is now approximately the size of the palm of the hand, though some are smaller or a bit larger. They are battery-powered. A consumable element containing chemicals which react with glucose in the drop of blood is used for each measurement. For most models this element is a plastic test strip with a small spot impregnated with glucose oxidase and other components. Each strip can only be used once and is then discarded.

Cost is a major issue for most people, but there’s good news if you have any kind of medical insurance. A glucose meter is typically considered to be a vital part of medical treatment and insurance companies often pay for a portion or the entire cost of the meter. At the same time, there is sometimes a limit on the amount the insurance company will pay, and that may severely limit your options.

While cost is naturally important, remember that you’re going to be living this life from now on. Finding a cheaper glucose meter that requires a more serious stick for blood may seem like the best option when you’re writing the check for the meter, but the tedium of the daily stick may negate that cost in the long run.

There are some companies out there that help with the cost of a glucose meter if you meet specific income guidelines. This may be a good answer if your quandary about which meter to buy is purely based on financial restraints. Remember that Medicare often pays on this important testing equipment as well. Your doctor, druggist or representative of a local medical supply company may also be good sources of information about how to find the best deals and how to get help paying for a glucose meter.

Finding a very inexpensive glucose meter may be the best answer to this situation. If the meter is accurate, it’ll get you through the initial period of adjusting your life to the regular testing of your blood sugar. Then take time to do some research into what’s hot and what’s not in glucose meters. You’ll find that some make absolutely ridiculous claims and you may have to ask some questions to find those companies that produce the glucose meter that will work best for you and your lifestyle.