Bodybuilding Basics

By Jelani Viyai (Certified Personal Trainer)

Recommendation: Consult your physician before starting any training regimen.

Below are basic elements you should consider prior to starting a fitness training program. It is important to lay out a detailed plan on how you intend to reach your fitness goals.

1. What is your present health condition/consulting your health physician
2. Determining your fitness goals
3. Choosing a place to workout
4. Committing adequate time
5. Devising your workout plan
6. Designing your diet plan
7. Reaching your goals & maintaining them

It's not enough to start lifting weights at a gym, hoping you will somehow hit your fitness target. This is the dumb mans way of training. My advice to you is to plan your workouts strategically so that you can execute appropriately to reach your fitness goals in the shortest amount of time. Get yourself a training journal, one small enough to fit in the palm of your hand with a pen for scribing.

First you want to determine how good or poor your health is. If you are not sure or haven't visited your physician in awhile, this might be a good incentive for you pay him a visit. Have all your routine tests done and ask your physician if you are healthy enough to start a workout regimen that may require lifting weights and long periods of physical exertion such as pressing, squatting, running and jumping.

Once your doctor has cleared you to start your workout regimen, you should determine what your fitness goals will be. Be sensible when choosing so that you won't have to quit your regimen should it become too difficult to continue. Whether your goal is to gain muscle mass to insulate your bones during your latter years, or to lean-out for better circulation and heart health, you should consider all these factors when making your final choice.

Once you have determined what your fitness goals are you should then determine where you will workout. Whether it is at home or at a local gym, your decision should be based on whether or not the place provides you the equipment and space necessary to reach your goals. Purchasing a gym membership may not be within everyone's budget, and so a home fitness program like INSANITY by Sean T. might be ideal. Sean T Insanity Workout Program is available for purchase here on our website. But if you feel you need the motivation of a gym to get you through your workouts, then I suggest you find a gym that's open 7 days a week, 24 hours a day that allows you to get your workouts done any time.

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Once you have established a place to workout, you should determine how much time your busy days and weeks will allow for your training regimen. Do not consider this lightly. A workout plan without adequate time is doomed for failure. Whether your goal is to gain muscle mass or get shredded, you cannot achieve it by training only two days a week for 1 hour or five days a week for only 15 - 20 minutes. The time you allot for your workouts must be conducive to your overall goals. My advice is to work out a minimum of three days a week for no less than 1 hour and 15 minutes per workout. If you have more time on your hands than most and want to accelerate your fitness results, I suggest you workout a maximum of 5 days a week for no longer than 1 hour and 15 minutes per workout. But do allow yourself the minimum 8 hours of sleep nightly required for muscle repair and recovery. And be sure to drink eight to twelve 8oz. glasses of water daily.

Once you have completed this stage, you need to devise a workout routine that you can follow until you reach your goals. This is where your fitness journal and pen will come in. In your journal devise a strategic assault on your body that will yield you the positive results you desire. You should train a minimum of three body parts per workout session. This will ensure that you don't run past your allotted time and or worst, burn out before you complete your full workout. Just take your time and schedule your workouts evenly. This practice will serve you well in reaching your fitness goals without injury.

Once you have completed your workout plan you need to draw up a diet plan. This is a crucial part of your fitness plan, because fifty percent of your success relies on what you eat daily during your training regimen. Be sure to eat as much fresh fruits, leafy greens and lean cuts of beef, chicken, fish and turkey as possible. You want to avoid putting foods in your body that will build up toxins and slow down your metabolism. Your metabolism aids with burning unwanted body fat and excessive calories consumed from foods you eat. Write in your training journal all the healthy live-foods you like eating. By having your daily diet planned in advance it will prevent you from binging on foods that are not productive to your training success and overall health.

And finally the moment has arrived whereat you have reached your fitness goals and life is great! But still there's that fear in the back of your mind that has you worried that you might revert back to your old, unhealthy self. Believe me when I say, everyone who has ever gained and lost weight knows this fear. So you are not alone. The most important things now are to acknowledge your great accomplishment of reaching your fitness goal and to celebrate it in a big and healthy way! The key is not to over-indulge on foods that might undo all the good you have accomplished with your body.

The way I see it, fitness training should be an ongoing preventive measure for anyone who desire to maintain what they've accomplished through smart dieting and training. I mean, let's face it; the world will never stop producing tasty, bad-foods that we crave. So we might as well continue our daily preventive workouts to combat the possibility of gaining back bad-pounds or losing our chiseled appearance due to over indulgent of forbidden foods. This concludes Bodybuilding Basics. I hope this information has been helpful and inspires you to go for your fitness dreams!

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Is Your Diet Hindering Your Success?

by Jelani Viyai (C.P.T.)

No truer words have ever been spoken when it comes to dieting and weight training. Fifty percent of your training success relies on what you eat daily. It doesn't matter what exercises you do or how many days and hours you spend in the gym; you will never achieve your ultimate fitness goals without a clean, healthy eating plan to aid your efforts.

Many try to find that magic pill or product that will fulfill their dreams of finally reaching that perfect size and weight. But truth is, most end up wasting their money, because optimum health is not found in a bottle or box. Its found at your neighborhood grocery store. That's right, everything you need to slim down and regain your optimum health is in the foods found at your everyday grocery store.

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These optimum foods, are all green, leafy vegetables, lean cut meats, fish, poultry, dried beans, oats and brand cereals. And of course, purified water. These are all the ingredients you need to revert back to the size you were genetically born with. I do not believe people are born prone to be obese. In my opinion if none of the fast food restaurants existed today, nearly 90% of our obesity problems would not exist. But because we can not eliminate these restaurants from our world, we can at least eliminate the foods they produce from our daily diets.

It's important that you focus on eating more live-foods. Live foods are filled with life sustaining nutrients the body needs to thrive. Live foods can be planted in the ground and still bare fruit by duplicating itself. All live foods are raw such as, apples, oranges, beets, potatoes, broccoli, carrots, eggplants, bean sprouts, turnips, pears, watermelon, nectarines, lettuce, raw pecans, walnuts, almonds, grapes etc. Any live-food you cook before eating, destroys its living nutrients and in a sense turns it into a dead food. You want to eat as much raw or semi-raw plant foods as possible during your workout regimen.

If you are buying foods that cannot duplicate itself when planted, then you are in my opinion, eating what I refer to as dead-foods. Most dead foods do not have much living nutrients in them that the body needs to nourish and repair itself for optimum health and performance. Some examples of dead foods are: roasted nuts, canned vegetables, processed meats, cheeses, fruit and vegetable juices, breads, candy, cakes, ice cream, bagels, pasta, yogurt, fast foods, energy drinks and sodas, etc.

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I know giving up all your dead foods would be asking too much, and only your most extreme athlete could do so. But your healthy eating routine should consist of 80% or more live foods and 20% or less of dead foods daily. Accomplish this goal and watch your fitness and dieting results soar! Your healthy eating plan should accommodate a modest workout plan of four workout days weekly for one hour each. And your training doesn’t have to start in a gym. You can start your regimen in your home by doing a home fitness program like INSANITY” by Sean T. This workout program is sold on our website for your convenience! Or if you prefer you could play tennis, join a running club, run on your home treadmill or do thirty minutes laps in your home or neighborhood pool. All these are great, inexpensive ways to jumpstart your training regimen! I hope this information has been helpful and inspires you to go for your fitness dreams!

Heavy Training Verses Light Training

What are the Pros & Cons

by Jelani Viyai (C.P.T.)

Heavy Weight Training

There is a distinct different between training heavy and training light and the results and benefits are also different. If your goal is to gain muscle mass then you need to train heavy. This doesn’t mean you should lift the heaviest weight in the gym as this can lead to injury.My best advice is, lift the heaviest weight possible without the need of assistance. If you need help lifting the weight at any stage of the movement then it is too heavy. Go down 5 pounds until you reach your maximum lifting weight.

This maximum-weight-methodshould be used for any free-weight equipment you use in your regimen. Free weights means weights that are not attached to a machine or bolted down apparatus. You should avoid using nautilus machines and cable apparatuses as they will take longer for you to reach maximum muscle breakdown. Use only free weights such as dumbbells and barbells for building muscle mass; and don't be sloppy with your movements as this can also lead to injury and cause your to develop your muscles unevenly.

And finally, you should never do more than 3 sets of a particular exercise at your optimum weight and never more than 6 reps per set. Thats written as: 3 sets X 6 reps. Meaning, for every set you perform you do six reps max before putting the weight down. So at the conclusion of your exercise you will have performed a total of 18 reps. This may not seem like a lot, but lifting at your maximum poundage will soon break down your muscle fibers and tire you out, which is what you are striving for.

You must reach muscle breakdown in order to grow. The scientific term for this muscle breakdown is call cell splitting. When your muscle fibers breakdown, the cells divide and rebuild themselves. Your muscles are not simply swelling up after a workout, they are actually splitting and duplicating themselves, making your muscles larger. This splitting will continue as long as your workouts cause muscle breakdown. It's important that you drink plenty of fluids after your workout, eat a good share of lean meats, green vegetable and get at least 8 hours of sleep nightly, because during sleep is when the cell-splitting and repair starts.

Light Weight Training

Now if your goal is to lose weight, tone and rip up, then you should use light weights. Again, this doesn’t mean you should lift the lightest weight in the gym. To select your optimum weight for ripping up, you should use a weight that allows you to do a minimum of 25 reps continuously unassisted. If you can not do 25 continuous reps then the weight is too heavy, go down 5 pounds until you reach your optimum lifting weight. Same thing applies in reverse, if you can lift more than 25 reps with a particular weight then it is too light,and you should go up 5 pounds until your reach your optimum lifting weight.

Now it's important to remember that lifting lighter will take longer to reach muscle breakdown. It will require you to do 4 times as many reps per set to achieve your shredded goal. It doesnt matter if you are training for mass or trying to get shredded, you will still need to induce muscle breakdown. But the good news is, by doing more reps at a faster pace with lighter weights your body will eliminate excess fat and water between your muscle cells faster, thus bringing your refined muscles to the skin surface.

Your shredding regimen should consist of free-weights, cables and nautilus machines. You should be concentrating on form, but mostly on the feel in the muscles as you work them. You should expect a burning, aching, hardening feel in the muscles you are working. Don't let this frighten you, you are not doing any damage to your body. This feeling is necessary to achieve your shredded goal.

You should focus your sight on the muscle you are working and do moderate-fast pace reps, while staying mindful of the burn you should be feeling in the muscle. This feeling is called, (muscle-mind-connection.) If you perform 25 reps for 2 full sets and do not feel this burn or hardening in your muscles then the weight is too light,and you should go up 5 pounds until the burn is ignited in the muscle you are working.

You should never do more than 6 sets of 25 reps per body part. Thats 150 reps per body part at a high pace. It's like a Cardio workout for each individual body part. And that's why you burn fat and eliminate excess water from your muscle cells at a faster pace than lifting heavy weights.Although heavy weight lifting do eliminate these things also, just at a much slower pace to allow you to retain most of the muscle mass along the way.

And finally, you should try to work 3 body parts per day for 3 days then rest a day before starting again. If this regimen is too much, scale back and do 2 days with 1 day rest in between before starting again. You have to be your body's best judge to determine what regimen of exercises and days of workouts are best for you. If the results are coming, then don’t change up your regimen until they decrease or stop. My advice is if isn't broken, dont try to fix it!

Extreme Total Body Workouts At Home

by Jelani Viyai (C.P.T.)

Phase - 1� Duration: 30 Minutes

1. Run In Place (moderate pace) 2 minutes
2. Push Ups (moderate pace) 1 minute
3. Leg Raisers (on your back - pull knees to abs) 2 minutes

Rest: 1 minute

4. Jumping Jacks ( moderate pace) 2 minutes
5. Abs Crunch (on floor - on your back) 1 minute
6. Push Ups (normal hand spacing) 1 minute

Rest: 1 minute

7. Run In Place (moderate pace) 1 minute
8. Leap Skyward (moderate pace) 1 minute
9. Scissor Leg Kicks (on floor- on your back - kick feet up and down) 2 minutes

Rest: 1 minute

10: Push Ups (moderate pace) 1 minute
11. Jumping Jacks (moderate pace) 1 minute
12. Abs Crunch (on floor) 2 minutes

Rest: 1 Minutes

13. Run In Place (moderate pace) 1 minute
14. Leg Raisers (moderate pace) 2 minutes
15. Walking Lunges (moderate pace) 2 minutes

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Phase - 2 Duration: 30 Minutes

1. Jumping Jacks ( fast pace) 1 full minutes
2. Planks (forearms on the floor -butt up- back straight - hold it)  2 minutes
3. Knee Ups (on floor on your back, pull knees to abs) 1 minute
4. Walking lunges (moderate pace) 2 minute

Rest: 1 minute

5. Push Ups (moderate pace) 1 minute
6. Skyward Jumps (moderate pace) 1 minute
7. Scissor Kicks (on floor - on your back -knees raised - kick outward) 1 minute
8. Run In Place (moderate pace) 1 minute

Rest: 1 minute

9. Triceps Dip off/chair (moderate pace) 1 minute
10. Jumping Jacks (moderate pace) 1 minute
11. Abs Crunch ( on floor- on back) 1 minute
12. Sumo Squat (feet wide apart - squat to the floor) 2 minutes

Rest: 1 minute

13. Push Ups� (moderate pace) 1 minute
14. Knee Ups ( on floor - on back - pull knees to abs) 1 minute
15. Run In Place ( moderate pace) 1 minutes
16. Triceps Dip off/chair (moderate pace) 1 minute

Rest: 1 minute

17. Sumo Squats (feet wide apart -squat to the floor) 2 minutes
18. Planks ( forearms on the floor - butt up & straight - hold it) 2 minutes
19. Walking Lunges ( moderate pace) 2 minutes
20. Abs Crunch (on floor- on back) 1 minute


Phase - 3 Duration: 30 Minutes

1. Run In Place ( fast pace) 2 minutes
2. Abs Crunch (on back) 2 minutes
3. Bends and Thrusts ( military style) 1 minute

Rest: 1 minute

4. Push Ups (hands spaced wide) 1 minute
5. Sumo Squats (feet wide apart) 2 minutes
6. Leg Raisers (on floor - on back- pull knees to abs) 2 minutes

Rest: 1 minute

7. Triceps Dips (off chair) 1 minute
8. Planks (on forearms - butt up-back straight - hold it) 2 minutes
9. Jumping Jacks (moderate pace) 1 minutes

Rest: 1 minute

10. Walking Lunges (moderate pace) 1 minute
11. Triceps Dip (off chair) 1 minute
12. Push Ups (hand spaced wide) 1 minute

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Phase - 4� Duration: 20.5 Minutes

1. Jumping Jacks (fast pace) 2 minute
2. Push Ups (moderate pace) 1 minute

Rest: 30 seconds

3. Sumo Squats ( feet wide apart) 3 minutes
4. Scissor kicks ( on floor - on back- kick feet outward) 1 minutes

Rest: 30 seconds

5. Run In Place (fast pace) 2 minutes
6. Triceps Dip (off chair) 1 minute

Rest: 30 seconds

7. Jump Skyward (moderate pace) 2 minutes
8. Abs Crunch ( on floor - on back) 1 minutes

Rest 30 seconds

9. Walking Lunges (moderate pace) 2 minutes
10. Push Ups ( moderate pace) 1 minute

Rest 30 seconds

11. Knee Raisers ( on floor- on back- pull knees to abs) 1 minute
12. Planks (forearms on floor- back straight - butt up - hold it) 1 minute


Phase- 5 Duration: 10 Minutes

1. Run In Place (fast pace) 1 minutes
2. Push Ups (fast pace) 30 seconds
3. Abs Crunch (fast pace) 30 seconds
4. Sumo Squats (feet wide apart) 1 minute
Rest: 30 seconds

5. Scissor kicks ( on floor - on back- Knees up - Kick feet outward) 1 minute
6. Jumping Jacks (fast pace) 30 seconds
7. Triceps Dip (off chair) 1 minute
8. Toe Raisers (on stack of books) 1 minute

Rest 30 seconds

9. Push Ups (wide - fast pace) 30 seconds
10. Walking Lunges (moderate pace) 1 minute
11. Abs Crunch 30 seconds
12. Jump Skyward ( fast pace) 30 seconds