Muscle Self-Help Advice on Bulking Up - Common Sense Tactics

Written by Paul Wolf

Here are some common-sense approaches to shocking your body into better shape without turning into the Austrian Oak:
Change Your Order
Do you put more focus and energy into your initial sets and reps? Instead, warm up your muscles with lighter weights and do the heavier weights in your later sets. If you do chest and upper back first and legs last, switch this around, too. "Surprise, trick and fool the muscles," says Sam Varner, a former Olympic trainer.


Super-Slow Reps
Muscle gurus like Ellington Darden have long held that slow reps (particularly on the way down from a movement) involve more muscle fibers. Drop the weight down and do your reps smoothly and slowly through the full range of motion.


New Tricks for Your Old Dogs
The muscles, nerves and brain aren't dead material. They work in a complex neurological cooperation and "think" in ways we don't understand. Our job is to keep our muscles interested and growing. "Keep your muscles guessing" and "nudge them out of complacency," writes Robert Kennedy in Basic Routines for Massive Muscles.

exercises on the go Watch this exercise video on other ways to grab exercise while on the run:


Inventing new exercises is one way to avoid muscle boredom. For example, if you love the contraction you get through the top 20 percent of a leg extension, try inventing a fresh partial-range-of-motion exercise for that machine.

Get creative, but be careful. Ask a trainer at your gym, if you're unsure about the way in which you're doing a particular exercise.

Don't drop the conventional way to do the exercise. You're just adding new options. By constantly experimenting and expanded your repertoire, shocking the muscles will become second nature.

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