Hi again everyone,
Time for another blog in the bodybuilding world of CW and I hope Blog #4 had some things that made you think a bit.
Now I do like to kick off with things that drive me or inspire me to stay in the game and live the bodybuilding lifestyle.
I have really enjoyed consulting with people of all ages over the last five years or so to helping them both look and feel better about themselves. I particularly like to help the young guys to get involved as with this age of social networking, play-stations and simulated sports it is always great to assist them to get active and healthy again as that will only help them later in life in so many ways.
Four of my recent clients Will, Paul, Chris and Adam, were very successful in the May/June contest season with first and second placings in their Teenage, Junior and Open divisions. They all looked outstanding and have since continued to live the lifestyle and will only just get better and better with each passing month. These young blokes are the future of our sport and now have some keen focus in their lives to enhance what they were already doing. That passion and purpose is just so essential as I have alluded to in previous blogs.
Motivating the youth of today to excel and better themselves is a driving force for me, especially when you see them so happy about what they have achieved. I was able to congratulate them all when they got off stage with their trophies and medals and saw their elation first hand. The road to self improvement is a very important journey for us all and the need to never accept mediocrity. If more of us could adopt this mindset then society would become a lot more focused and productive and a whole load happier too!
One of the great exercises for developing the pectoral muscles as well as expanding the rib cage is the cross bench dumbbell pullover. This is a forgotten movement but one that you might consider including in your chest routine. It gives you a great pump but also hits the muscles of the upper lats and the long inner head of the triceps.
Lie perpendicularly across a flat bench with your traps on the edge of the padding. Clasp the dumbbell from one end in your hands, fingers overlapping with your elbows slightly bent. Start with the dumbbell directly over your head. Move the dumbbell back slowly, really concentrating on the negative to a point where the bottom of the dumbbell drops just below your head. Keep your hips down whilst moving the dumbbell back so as to get that great stretch in the ribcage and lower pecs. Now return the dumbbell back to a point just past overhead and try to feel the pecs contract in that top position. Always work with a spotter when doing this exercise. I will perform this exercise near the end of my chest routine after warming up from the previous exercises. It is a definite upper body mass builder so give it a try!
I mentioned briefly in Blog #4 about my own version of interval cardio which I termed “Peak 9”. I will do this cardio usually in the evenings after my workouts about 3 times per week on non consecutive days. It is very intense and really gets the heart rate up. High intensity cardio of this kind gives your BMR a real kick but won’t affect your muscle mass as it is only 21 minutes in duration.
I will normally do this on a life-cycle, cross-trainer or stationary bike. You begin by warming up at a steady pace for 3 minutes followed by a 30 second ‘sprint’ at a higher level on your chosen piece of equipment. Next back off both the level and rate of pedalling to a lower intensity for 90 seconds. Now perform the so called sprint the same as before and repeat the process so that the sprint begins on the odd minutes (ie; 3,5,7,9,11,13,15,17 & 19 minute marks). You then finish off with the final 90 seconds of moderate intensity taking you to 21 minutes in total. Hence 9 sprints were completed altogether. This cardio is gruelling but very effective and works beautifully for those of us that are time poor in our busy working weeks.
My low intensity cardio as I get closer to my 50th contest is first thing in the morning with my good old Beagle. We walk very fast up and down the hills of my Baldivis neighbourhood for approximately 50 minutes. I like this form of cardio too as it sets up your day, is a great fat burner, doesn’t impact on your muscle mass and most importantly keeps my best friend, Mr Brown, very happy!
I have spoken before about the cheat meal concept which I know doesn't sit well with everyone but has certainly worked well for me over the years. My cheat last weekend occurred on Sunday when my junior champ Chris, WA state novice champion Torrie and I all decided to give the 2kg food challenge at Outback Jack's a red hot crack. The task was to eat a 1kg rump steak, 500g of veggies and 500g of wedges in a measly 30 minutes! We all thought that if you finish in the allotted time then your reward was a t-shirt acknowledging the fact that you conquered the challenge. Or so we thought!! Chris and Torrie didn't quite finish but I managed to get it all down with only 1 minute to spare. So on that Sunday in the case of "Man V Food"...Man won!! My joy & elation turned to dismay & confusion when the young waitress said "Sorry Sir, in the month of July the prize is to go into a draw to maybe get to the next round where you can win something bigger and better". Now we all love a trophy for our efforts and it seemed on this occasion mine was going to be taken away from me...almost like 'taking candy from a baby!!' So I said to the more senior waitress "you mean I have just put 2kg of food in my guts just to go into a draw...I had my heart set on the t-shirt!!??" Well blow me down she went away and came back with my t-shirt trophy and said "Ok Sir, here you go, just don't tell my manager!" What a lovely young lady and it just goes to prove the old adage 'if you don't ask, you don't get!!'
Nine weeks to go as the countdown continues to my next show, strength levels are good and am feeling very much ‘in the zone’. That focused feeling is one of the things I love about the pre-contest preparation. I find that it filters into all the other aspects of your life so that everything seems to optimally come together.
Looking forward to catching up with my fiancée Louise and my Melbourne buddies from July 12th to July 22nd as I venture over East for the good old WA school holidays.
Until Blog #6 may you all find the time to exercise in your busy days so as to improve the way you look, feel and function. Go confidently in the direction of your dreams…live the life you’ve imagined!!
Kind regards, Craig W.