Can You Lose Fat & Gain Muscle Simultaneously?

It has often been said that you can’t lose fat and gain muscle simultaneously. That statement is actually incorrect. Beginners can do it. Even guys who have been training for a long time who make drastic changes to their diet and their workout programs can do it. You can’t do it for extended periods of time, but it can be done. For example, if you are currently doing traditional steady state cardio, switch to sprints. Sprints have an anabolic effect and do not produce cortisol… continue reading.

What Makes an Athlete Great?

In a dream come true I was able to spend my Valentine’s Day at home with my girlfriend eating an amazing dinner, and dessert consisting of homemade chocolate coconut pudding (made with the best protein powder on the market) while watching NBA All Star Saturday Night. Now that’s my kind of Valentine’s Day. I text messaged a few friends and told them to enjoy their price fixed dinners with the crappy holiday menu and that they could catch the highlights on Sports Center in the morning. I used to never miss this event but… continue reading.

How to Build Big Traps

Ever since I first discussed the importance of “the power look” and how important it is to earn respect and separate you from the pencil necks, I am repeatedly asked about how to build big traps. The best trap building exercise is the deadlift. One need look no further than the massive trap development of elite powerliters to see how effective this exercise is at building these intimidating muscles. Pussyfooting around with light weights will never get the job done. You need to deadlift heavy weights (with picture perfect form) for sets of 3-6 reps. A good goal for most… continue reading.

The Raison d’etre

By Alwyn Cosgrove I presented on Real World Fat Loss at the 2007 Perform Better event in Rhode Island and the 2008 NSCA conference. As part of my presentation I talked about my “story” – why I became fascinated with fat loss and effective fat loss training — and the need to destroy the myths that surround the topic — and why it keeps me up at night scouring journals for new information. I believe that behind every person who is trying to change something — or present something new… continue reading.

How to Build Big Calves

Question: I have a question about how to build big calves. Mine are like string beans and I can’t get them to grow. Got any good suggestions? Answer: Whenever people ask me how to build big calves, I immediately check their training volume. High volume works best for calves. They are probably the hardest muscle to build, and if you chose the wrong parents getting them to grow is gonna be a bitch. continue reading.

9 Exercises for Abs of Steel & Zero Back Pain

Although the majority of people continue to rely on exercises like sit ups and crunches when it comes to training the abdominals, research has proven that these movements place excessive loads on the lower back, leading to a lot of pain for a lot of people. Repeated, loaded spinal flexion is one of the leading causes for disc herniation. In fact, the traditional old school, slow speed sit up has been shown to place 730 pounds of compression on the spine! Other commonly used ab exercises place over 1,000 pounds of compression on the spine!… continue reading.

Conditioning for Football

Question: Coach Ferruggia, I just wanted to let you know I have been a big fan of your stuff for years and appreciate what you do. I had a quick question about football. What do you do for conditioning with your football players? When do you do it in the weekly schedule? How often? Thanks a lot man, Jared Austin Answer: Jared,… continue reading.

The Rise of Sandbag Training

By Josh Henkin Sandbags have a very rich history, maybe more so than any other training implement. For hundreds of years (possibly thousands) sandbags has been an integral training tool for athletes, specifically wrestlers. Why? They are an inexpensive tool that is incredibly versatile and can offer the benefits of unstable training with a challenging load. This is a benefit that many of today’s unstable gadgets can not provide. However, the benefits don’t stop there. Greater stabilizer, trunk, and grip strength can be developed with sandbags… continue reading.

Citrus Baked Tilapia

By Dave “The Muscle Cook” Ruel Makes 4 Servings Ingredients * – 1 pound fresh tilapia fillets * – 2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil * – 1 Tbsp. lime zest * – 1/4 cup freshly-squeezed lime juice * – 1/4 cup orange juice (preferably freshly-squeezed) * – 1/2 thai red pepper (optional, only if you like it spicy) * – 1 tsp. seasalt * – 1/2 tsp. freshly-ground black pepper Directions * 1. In a bowl, mix olive oil, lime zest, lime juice, orange juice,… continue reading.

Bands and Chains

Question: Jason, how do you use chains and bands with your athletes? Do you use them on dynamic effort days only or maximal effort days as well? What are the loading parameters? Answer: The answer to your question is I don’t. About 10 years ago I got caught up using chains and bands with almost everyone I trained. We used them as a form of accommodating resistance on dynamic effort days and some… continue reading.

How to Get Faster: Interview with Speed Coach, Patrick Beith

Q: What are the top two common myths that coaches still believe in regarding speed development? A: There are so many myths regarding speed development and proper training but I will give you some that I hear all of the time from coaches. 1. Speed work is running 100 yards or 200 yards or repeat 40’s with little or no rest. This is False. I have coaches tell me all the time that their athletes are doing speed work and then goes into telling me that his athletes are running beasts, suicides, repeat 100 meters, or repeat 40 yards dashes… continue reading.

Meatballs with Crunchy Sweet Potato Chips

This is a great recipe from Paleo Cookbooks. Ingredients 250g mince 1tsp salt 1/3 cup almond meal 3 cups baby spinach 1tsp dijon mustard (optional) 25g tomato paste 2tbs sage 1 sweet potato, medium Olive oil Instructions Preheat a fan-forced oven to 180o Celsius/350o Fahrenheit.  Place spinach in a bowl and cover with boiling water, leave for 2 minutes before draining as much liquid as possible from the spinach. Chop well.  Place spinach in a bowl along with mince, salt, almond… continue reading.

The Muscle Building Mindset

Let’s face it. Everyone wants to look better. I don’t know too many people that don’t want to gain more muscle or lose bodyfat. It’s human nature. You want to appeal to the opposite sex and command respect from you peers. I am obsessed with human performance and train for strength and function first and foremost, but even I would be lying if I said I didn’t want to look better. We all do. But wanting and doing are two entirely different things. Everyone wants to dramatically transform their… continue reading.

Are You Screwing Up Your Plyo, Speed and Agility Work?

Question: Coach, can you give me a quick overview of how you implement plyos, speed and agility work with your athletes? Answer: Ok, just so everyone is on the same page here, plyos consist of jumping, bounding and hopping exercises. These can be done off of one or two legs. Some of the simplest and most effective plyos are vertical jumps for height, box jumps, hurdle jumps, and broad jumps. Speed work consists of short sprints from 10-50… continue reading.

You Don’t Have to Be Young to be an Athlete

Written in 2006 For Todays Man magazine Remember when exercise used to be fun; when you used to get endless hours of physical activity each week without ever dreading the thought of it? Remember when you used to be able to break out into a full sprint without the fear of pulling a hamstring? How about when you could stand up from your chair without your lower back hurting? Oh, to be young. Or maybe it’s actually what we were when we were young…athletes. Sure as we get older we lose muscle mass and flexibility but this can not be… continue reading.