5 Exercises, Focus, and Follow-Through: Advice for the Lifter Who Hasn’t Made Much Progress

I got an email a few weeks back from a reader who wanted some quick advice on what he should do in terms of his training and diet, in particular on how to go from skinny-fat and weak, to lean and jakt.

At one point or another, this is what we all long for, after all.

Now, I say specifically on my contact page that I’m not available to look over programs or design one as a result of talking shop.

However, this reader’s request was pretty simple in that he even said I could respond with a one-word answer, so I was a little more open to see where we could take this for edification of everyone else who may have a similar inquiry.

Here’s his opening email to me, and an image of his current condition. 

Read more5 Exercises, Focus, and Follow-Through: Advice for the Lifter Who Hasn’t Made Much Progress

Upright Rows Alternative Using Bands + Band Front and Lateral Raises

I made a quick video to give a demonstration on how to use bands for upright rows. The reason for doing this is because one of my original beta testers of LGN365 sent in a question about how to do upright rows that didn’t bother her wrists.

This is a complaint, although not too common, but worth addressing and correcting, if possible. If it’s not the wrists, it’s shoulder discomfort when doing the movement.

I tried to explain the proper way to do them with bands, but thought a video was a much better idea to show how I do them. Also, I’m working on my editing skills, so it was good practice.

I also managed to demonstrate front raises, which really need no explanation on how to do them.

I’ve also demonstrated side lateral raises, both from the front and the back.

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Get Your Butt Out of the Hole – How To Improve Your Squat

Today’s article comes to us courtesy of Jarlo Ilano, PT, MPT, OCS, physical therapist and co-founder of Gold Medal Bodies.

Squats.  I love ‘em.  There are probably some states and municipalities where they’ll let me marry them.  I’m sure my wife would understand, she knows what they mean to me.

Like with any great love, it was transformative.  I was your typical ectomorph asian kid (interesting aside, Teddy Roosevelt called Filipinos “his little brown brothers”. Hard to be offended though, since it was Teddy fricking Roosevelt).  Then came squats, like a revelation from the heavens:

“Thou shalt gain thirty pounds of muscle from putting weights on your back and bending your knees!”

Thunderbolts and lightning, it was a big thing.

Tale as old as time: Do your squats, eat more than you can stand, repeat as needed, and you’ll grow.  I was lucky enough to learn that early and not get too distracted by everything else.

I was also lucky enough to dial in my form from the start.  Attribute it to starting early enough as a kid or genetic heritage, but squatting butt to heels was no big deal.  The ability to get to the full range of motion allowed me to get maximal gains from my lifting.  Because it was so natural, I didn’t think anything of it.

Read moreGet Your Butt Out of the Hole – How To Improve Your Squat

Shoulder Savers – How to Keep Your Shoulders Healthy Post-Rehab

For many of us, personal fitness, strength training and conditioning is a hobby.  For others, it’s a passion.  For a select few of us, it’s our lifeblood.  Regardless of where this positive obsession with self-improvement is placed in your lives, we all have something in common – to continue progressing, we must remain healthy.

If you’ve followed my work for the last few years, you know I’ve battled my fair share of shoulder injuries.  Now while I’ve never had anything so severe as an actual tear in my rotator cuff or labrum, I’ve experienced a few painful impingements that have kept me out of the pressing game for what seemed to be far too long.

Regardless of how severe your injury, they’re never any fun and are sure to sideline you for anywhere from a few months, to a year or more in some cases.

Previously, I wrote about how I corrected my shoulder issues with the help of Eric Cressey via email and various articles he’s written on the subject.

However, today I want to give you some tips and ideas on how to maintain shoulder health post rehab.  If you’ve never been injured, then my goal is to help you keep yourself from ever getting hurt in the first place.

Read moreShoulder Savers – How to Keep Your Shoulders Healthy Post-Rehab