Winter is coming...
If you’re a bro like me then you are getting ready to add some size to your frame.
Whether you are wanting to get stronger or bigger, in general, I have laid out my top 10 tips for building muscle leading up to the new year
Tip #1: Food is your friend
When you’re looking to build muscle and get stronger you need to eat
Food is your fuel and if you’re hitting the gym like you’re supposed to
You will need more of it to aid you in building and recovery
Tip #2: Structured Training
Strength and muscle building requires a structured training plan
You progress through consistency so having a training plan you can follow will allow you to improve through specific movements
Tip #3: Avoid Injury
Seeing progress as you go through your plan is so rewarding but nothing hurts more than having to stop because of an injury.
To avoid getting injured make sure to listen to your body and use correct form.
Know the difference between being injured and being sore
Sore is when your muscle feel fatigued or “slow” when activated
Injured is when you feel a sharp or stabby pain in your joints
Trust me there is a difference and you can tell
Tip #4: Trust the Process
Getting stronger is a journey
A journey that is both rewarding and challenging
So no matter where you are starting from or when you’re not seeing what you want immediately trust and follow the plan because results take time
Remember to celebrate each small step and realize along the way that you’re working towards a more badass version of yourself!
Tip #5: Lift HEAVY and OFTEN
There no doubt about it, to get strong, you gotta lift weights.
When you’re looking to get stronger it’s ok to test your boundaries
That doesn’t mean every single session, it just means every so often
Each training day, try to do a little more weight or add in a few reps
Test yourself and see how much more you are able to do
Tip #6: Boost your testosterone naturally:
To men, testosterone is very important
it plays a huge part in muscle building, fat loss, and many other health-related issues
Eat enough saturated and monounsaturated fats, keep your sugar intake low, and make sure you’re getting enough Vitamin D and Zinc.
A killer to your testosterone is stress
Stress releases cortisol and its hormone impacts your body to store fat
A natural way to lower your cortisol levels and relieve stress is to meditate
Tip #7: Eat more food.
There's no way around it.
You want to build muscle you’re going to have to eat
But its not just eating more of your favorite shit foods or drinking shakes
Focus on eating nutrient-dense foods
Lean meats, carbs, lots of vegetables and healthy fats
Focus on eating more on fats and carbs.
They are packed with calories and will give your muscles what they need to grow
Tip #8: Protein
Protein is needed for building muscle, so make sure you are getting it in every meal
You can get protein from any number of real food sources
My rule of thumb is eating anything that once had eyes, a heart, a mother and a soul…
Other protein sources include...
But if you do have trouble getting everything in this is where bars and shakes come into play
Tip #9: sleep!
When you building muscle, your body is working overtime
You’re pushing yourself in the gym, lifting more and breaking down your muscles in order for them to grow back stronger
This process burns extra calories
And your body It’s going to need time to recover.
Sure spending extra time in the gym will help you build muscle but its whats you do outside of the gym that will impact your ability to grow
So sleep is very important when it comes to building muscle
Tip #10: Start today!
Gaining muscle comes down to eating right, getting enough sleep and strength training.
The most important step you can take today is to begin so start lifting today!
It can be as simple as doing some push-ups and squats
You can figure it out as you go along but if you want a done for you game plan with a proven process
Let me coach you and hold you accountable
Contact me and Ill shoot you the details
So you want to lose weight and get in shape
But you don’t want to leave your house or access to any equipment…
Im going to coach you through a great Body-weight Workout Routine you can do anywhere: in your living room, at a park, or even in a small area at the gym
This is one of the types of workouts I build for my Online Coaching Clients, and I’m pumped to share it with you today!
Let’s get right to it
Before you begin, make sure to warm-up
get your heart rate up and get your body warmed up for what is about to do
Warming up helps reduce the chance of injury, builds stronger foundational strength and improves performance
Some things you can do to warm up are starting my swinging your arms and legs, then move onto jogging, running, riding a bike, and finish off with some jump rope, push-ups, and squats
As you get through the warm-up you steadily increase your heart rate and have a light sweat going into your workout
30 Jumping Jacks
20 Bodyweight Squat
15 Sit ups
note: Click on the movements to see video demonstration
If you’re able, you’ll do each movement without a break in between
Once you’ve finished all movements in the set, do it again.
If you’re still able after the 2nd run through, go for a third.
These movements come one after another so expect to get tired as you go through this workout
So remember, It’s ok to stop and take a break and don’t push yourself too much
If you’re wondering how many days a week can you do this workout
I would say 2-3 times a week
Depending on your current fitness level and if you are doing anything other physical activities
At ITP Fitness, we follow the current training schedule
Day 1- Strength Training
Day 2- Conditioning
Day 3- Strength Training
Day 4- Conditioning
Day 5- Combination of Strength and Conditioning
So if you were to follow this training schedule you can do this workout on Day 1.
Day 2 Go for a run, swim or bike and then go back to doing this workout day 3.
If you want me to coach you and hold you accountable to my proven process
Contact me and Ill shoot you the details
Ladies, you’ve heard that you should lift weights
But do you know the reasons why ?
Here are the top 7 reasons why women should strength train:
#1) Stronger people are harder to kill and more useful in general
Life is easier when you're stronger
Think about the daily tasks you do in everyday life
No need to call for help or struggle to get that 50lb bag of dog food moved around
Carry a heavy object up a flight of stairs
Having to start and stop over again because the groceries are weighing you down
In general, when you're stronger, everyday life is easier
#2) Less chance of injury
when you build strong muscles, you’re also building stronger bones, ligaments, and tendons..
making you less prone to injury doing things you love like playing tennis, running, even walking
#3) Helps combat age-related muscle loss
Having muscle allows you to remain independent longer
No need to rely on someone to help you in daily tasks down the road
#4) Eat more
People with more muscle burn more calories at rest than those who don't
which means you can eat more and get away with having a “cheat”
#5) Reduce pain
having a strong body makes living easier reduces pain in common pain areas
Because of strong muscle, you can hold a better posture, and reduce back / hip pain
This is a personal preference and you can choose to build more muscle in specific areas
Ever wanted that hourglass shape?
Or having amazing arms and back to show off in that little black dress?
Through strength training and building muscle, you can now change the way your body looks
#7) Live longer
There are so many benefits to working out and adding in strength training to your routine just aids in helping you live a long and healthy life
Pretty much all marketing for fitness is marketed towards women
Look in any magazine or flip the channel there's a new program, workout or pill that promises crazy results with some system, gadget or super-food
On social media, you follow and save influence's' videos for...
All designed and promised to “tighten” those problem areas, “toning” your muscles and “tucking” fat in certain areas
Over the years I've had a lot of confused clients who I've had to talk to about this
So I want to give it to you straight and cut out all the B.S. by covering what's being marketed to you
Misconception #1 spot reduce fat
I've had a few of my clients point to certain parts of their body and ask “how did I get rid of that?”
flab on their stomach
the cafeteria lady arms
Even those bat wings
You know that flabby part between your armpits…
Im not gonna bullshit you
Your body cannot just lose fat in specific locations
Trying to get rid of flabby arms or a flabby stomach by doing thousands of curls or crunches won't help
There is no spot reduction...
Your body stores fat in certain places
If you find yourself saying, “I can't eat that because it goes straight to my butt!”
You might be right
there are certain places that fat goes to first, then moves into the others
The same goes when you are losing weight
It might come off your belly, chest, then arms, and EVENTUALLY your butt
With that said, there is no amount of targeted exercises you can do that will spot reduce fat
This is out of your control
So instead, focus on what you can control
Eliminate fat through nutrition and strength training
What you eat is responsible for 80-90% of how you look and feel
And is 80% of the fat-loss equation
The other 20% come from strength training
Specifically, functional movements, which are the big compound movements like squats, push, pulls, lunges, hinging and rotating
These movements recruit a lot of muscles at one time, therefore burning extra calories
Even after your workout is done
Want to learn how to lift weights to reduce fat?
Join my Little Black Dress Project
So You Can Become More Self-Confident, Lose Weight, And Celebrate Being A Strong And Sexy Woman."
Misconception #2: Men and women should train differently
When you look across the gym floor you've probably seen your average bro doing the following;
Barbell Squats, Deadlifts, Shoulder presses, Push-ups, Dips etc...
On that same gym floor, you’ll most likely see women go through lightweight dumbbell circuits, high reps and adding in a stability ball.
The reason for this is because of what has been marketed to you and passed down in your social circle that women should have a different program than men...
But in reality, there’s no reason men and women should train differently
There’s no reason that men and women can’t complete the same types of exercises
While a guy can lift a certain way to get bigger, you can lift in the same way, but instead build that dense, tight, and lean athlete look your aiming for
If you recall from my previous posts you will not “BULK” up like men do because of your hormones like estrogen, testosterone, and dietary differences
Remember, your diet is 80-90% of the equation!
Not only that, but you have just as much a right to be in the free weights section and squat rack as guys do.
Unfortunately, it’s just less common
Though some women are changing the landscape of that!
To get the body you want, train in a way that is going to get you results
Squats, Deadlifts, Shoulder presses, Push-ups, Dips etc…
At ITP Fitness this is what we program to give you the best chance to build the body you want!
To hammer this point home: we work with coaching clients who are brand new to strength training, and we help them pick up their weight for the first time
Misconception #3: Eat less
The equation to lose weight is simple
Calories in - calories out = weight loss
So by this equation, yes, you do need to eat less in on order to lose weight
But Ill have you consider that you can eat more and lose weight
Simply by telling you to eat fewer calories is not the whole story
What I find is that magazines, trainers and such fail to mention or even look at what calories are being taken in already…
...and educating clients that not all calories are created equal
Let me break it down for you
If you cut down your current calories to 1200 calories, even if its fast food, you will lose weight
But you will also lose muscle and feel miserable
Diets do work but there's also a huge reason diets fail
People are unhappy, always hungry and find it to be a miserable way of life, so they drop it
Your body reacts differently to processed foods versus nutrient-dense foods like lean proteins, low glycemic carbohydrates, vegetables, and healthy fats
Your body takes in more vitamins, minerals, and compounds from nutrient-dense foods
Causing your body to feel energized, healthier, stronger and leaner
On the other hand, by eating processed foods your body feels sluggish, sick, weak, and fat
I often get asked by friends and clients, “which Diet is best”
And my answer is the diet you can stick with for longer than 6 months
If you cant find yourself staying the course you will find short term success followed by backtracking to your original weight…
...or worse, HEAVIER!
So, what do you do?
Dont focus on calories
Instead, focus on nutrient density
Nutrient-dense foods pack a lot of nutrients and carry very few calories
When my clients come back to me from making the switch from processed to nutrient-dense they tell me that they are eating more, feeling full, and losing weight!
Heres a blueprint of what they do:
Eat nutrient-dense foods AKA real food!
Eat reasonable portions
Eat mostly veggies every meal
Eat protein with every meal
Dont go back for seconds
Now this doesn't mean you can go to town eating all the food
But you will find that you are eating more but still consuming fewer calories than when you were eating processed foods
This approach is much easier to follow, satisfying and sustainable
Above is a picture of my Trifecta medal
Each spartan race you are given a piece of a medal
A medal that can only be completed by finishing 3 different races within a calendar year...
My first Trifecta completed
It wasn't part of my plan when i set my fitness goals for this year
It kinda just fell into place and worked out...
I've enjoyed running Spartan Races this year for a few reasons
Obstacle course racing is out of my element so its given something to train for
applying what i do in the gym and using it on course...
its given me a chance to compete again...
Everyone is struggling in their own way
Dealing with obstacles on the course but also obstacles in their life
We find ways to overcome the obstacles in front of us and I believe their are lessons in each one of them
Applying what we discover during the struggle and using the lesson in other areas of our life
Here are just a few lessons i learned from racing this year
- Keep it simple
- What you say to yourself matters
- Prior proper planning
- Take care of yourself
- You are capable of so much more
There are more but these stood out to me the most
Is there something you've done in your life where you learned something through an obstacle
if so, hit reply and let me know
Id love to know and share your insight
- Coach Christian
P.S. And of course i have to thank girlfriend, Rachel, for getting me to do my first race.
I wouldn't have been humbled and found a new sport i want to get better in
When I get comments from my female clients about why we’re lifting weights or I see them reach for the lighter Dumbbells I can't help but so sigh
It's not their fault and if you have the same concerns and do the same you are not at fault either
There's a lot of misinformation in the media/ internet/ social circle about girls lifting weights
How women should keep the weights light and do an excessive amount of reps in order to look thin and happy to fit in what our culture defines as “Heath and fitness” for women
Ladies, I hear you
If negatives were all I heard I wouldn't do it either
But I'm here to clear up a lot of the reasons you are not lifting weights
Reason #1: “I'll get Bulky”
This is probably the biggest concern for a female and I’ve heard it too often from my female clients
I tell you what I’ve told them…
Now, I've been trying to put on weight for the past 4 years
I intentionally set up my workouts and nutrition in order to GAIN weight
Over the course of 12 weeks, I was able to put on 10lbs
12 weeks 10lbs, thats it
And I was trying to PUT ON weight…
If lifting weights is a concern for you I will give you 2 reasons why you won't get bulky
#1 Men have something women don't
Its called testosterone
Because of testosterone men have an advantage when it comes to losing and gaining weight
By nature, men are going to be bigger, faster and stronger than women
So unless you are planning on taking a dose of testosterone I wouldn't worry about getting bulky
Your body will only grow to the level of calories you give it
Excess calories are what allows your body to expand
Whether its to gain fat or muscle and yes both
As long as you are eating the same amount of food while you are lifting weights your body won't grow
Your body is smart
What your body will begin to do is work more efficiently
Lifting weights is resistance to your movement and it will get rid of the fat you currently have and begin to form muscle in order to continue to lift weights to reduce the amount of effort it takes
By doing this you won't get bigger
Your body will remain the SAME weight but your body composition will begin to change
This is what gives you THAT look of being “toned” or having “definition”
Reasons #2 Cardio Burns more fat
Cardio is the easiest and the most effective way to lose weight
No wonder people gravitate towards the treadmill or hitting the pavement
You can check your tracker and notice the number of calories burned by that activity
But when you stop moving so does the calorie count
With weight training, even though the number isn't grand like cardio, those calories continue to add up throughout the day
Ever wonder why youre hungrier on days you weight train?
Its because your body is revved up and will continue to burn calories hours after you've left the gym
Reason #3: Combination of light weights and reps is best for toning
I see some girls lifting 3lb weights endlessly in order to get the body they want
If you're choosing this approach you are more likely to get arthritis than those defined arms
Lifting weights is resistance to your movement
Now, your body is smart...
What your body will begin to do is work more efficiently
it will get rid of the fat you currently have and begin to form muscle in order to continue to lift weights to reduce the amount of effort it takes
By doing this you won't get bigger, over muscular, or start looking like a man
Instead, your body will remain the SAME weight but your body composition will begin to change
This is what gives you THAT look of being “toned” or having “definition”
Reason #4: “I dont know how to Lift weight”
This one is the easiest reason to solve of them all
Simply because the answer is ITP Fitness
Shameless plug aside one of the primary complaints I hear from girls who want to lift weights is that they don’t know how
It makes sense unless you grew up playing sports, took some form of classes or had a personal trainer, any person wouldn't know exactly how
Now, there are a bunch of resources like google or Instagram to find routines, workouts and some how-to’s
Although helpful having a coach by your side to guide you and give you immediate feedback trumps anything you can experience over the internet
So If you're feeling like this is you I have a solution...
Little Black Dress Project
A 6-week strength and conditioning program to help you build confidence and help you look great not only inside the gym but outside as well
You will be following a safe and effective strength training program that'll have you Little Black Dress ready and do it before those holiday parties begin
There are no gimmicks, cleanses, pills, or crash diets
Just the most effective exercises, other girls who want the same result as you, a support and accountability system, and a coach to help guide you along the way
You can find out more about the program here: https://itpfitness.clickfunnels.com/little-black-dress-itpfitness
My focus is to help individuals make lasting improvements in their lives. I am a catalyst for change.