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Lifters

Arthur Saxon on Conditioning

Arthur Saxon was a big influence on me, as obvious by the Renegade logo at the top of this site. I’m obsessed with old time strongmen and old school methods of training. One of the things I like about the early days of Physical Culture is that everyone did everything. Meaning that bodybuilders lifted heavy weights and competed in contests where they had to do more than pose. Lifters possessed impressive physiques and usually didn’t gain unnecessary fat to simply improve their leverages on an exercise and lift more weight. Olympic lifts were not practiced only by… continue reading.

Drop the Deadlift?

If the deadlift is the best muscle building exercise on the planet why do many successful strength and conditioning coaches not use the movement with their athletes? The reason is simple; the deadlift takes too much out of you and is very hard to recover from. When you have an athlete who also needs to be implementing speed work, conditioning and sport specific drills on a regular basis you can’t afford to compromise his recovery ability to such an extreme level. A hard deadlift session will usually leave him slower, less explosive and with a general, overall… continue reading.

Top 15 Posts of 2010

In case you missed them here’s a quick list of the most popular (along with some of my personal favorite) posts from 2010: Please leave a comment on as many of them as you like. I always read each and every comment you post and always appreciate the feedback. You Must Have the Wrong Guy- Unlike Bruce Banner, people seem to like me when I’m angry. I kicked 2010 off with this little rant that a lot of people seemed to enjoy. Simplify Your Program to Amplify Your Results– Too many people add too many ingredients and end… continue reading.

Deadly Combination For Size & Strength

Question: I’ve read that the best way to get bigger and stronger is to train exclusively in the 8-12 range like bodybuilders. Then I turn around and someone is telling me that I should go heavy and only train in the 1-5 rep range for the best gains in size and strength. So which one is it? Answer: Before I answer your question I have to preface it with the fact that beginners should always stick with basic programs and reps in the 5-8 range. Nothing higher than 8, and nothing lower than 5. Do that… continue reading.

How to Deload Properly… And Why It’s So Important

Deload weeks are when you want to take plates OFF the bar Once you’ve been training more than a few years the need to deload on a somewhat regular basis becomes more and more prevalent. How often you do so depends on your training age, strength levels and injury history. Countless  successful lifters have had great results by training hard for three weeks and deloading on the fourth week. It’s a pretty widely accepted formula and has been proven time and time again. So there’s really no need to try and reinvent the wheel. Three weeks hard, one week… continue reading.

How to Build Muscle Mass

Q: Jay, everyone thinks they know how to build muscle mass. But as you and I know, most people never really even get close to their true potential. What is the biggest mistake people make when trying to get big and strong? A: They follow the same old, traditional bodybuilding routine. That means they are training each body part with too much volume, not enough intensity, probably too much intensiveness, and not enough frequency. Just so everyone is on the same page, when I say intensity I am referring to percentage of one rep max. That means that… continue reading.

How to Build Muscle with High Reps

Although I am not a fan of high reps on most exercises for most lifters, there are actually times when I do recommend them. So if you want to learn how to build muscle with high reps, then read on. When you are more advanced and have developed a respectable level of strength, high reps can actually be a great tool for stimulating new muscle growth. The reason I don’t recommend high reps to beginners is because they don’t have the strength, coordination or stabilization to maintain perfect form throughout a long duration set… continue reading.

How to Build a Barn Door Sized Back

If you want to build a thick, muscular back there are three exercises that you need to become very familiar with. Those exercise are chin ups, rows and lastly but most importantly; deadlifts. If you did nothing but those three exercises faithfully you would end up with a muscular and impressive looking back. The back muscles make up a huge portion of your total musculature and developing them will add pounds of mass to your frame. So how do we go about developing all of the muscles of the back? Firstly we have to address… continue reading.