In today’s natural bodybuilding video blog, Rodzilla and I cover how to perform a short but intense home leg workout routine designed to increase the mass and thickness of your upper legs (thighs, glutes and hamstrings). This is a fast paced bodybuilding workout that only uses dumbbells and a leg extension / leg curl attachment. We focus on muscle tension at all times and as you will see, we use a variety of repetition ranges. See the full workout execution on the video below. The full workout description (sets/reps) is detailed under the video.


Short Home 25-30 Minute Natural Bodybuilding Leg Workout Routine for Mass

This is a great natural bodybuilding weight training routine that you can do for the purposes of gaining muscle and losing fat.

Instructions: This is a fast paced workout, Only rest the amount of time that it takes for your partner to go through the set. If training alone, rest no more than 60 seconds.

For supersets there is no rest between the first and second exercise of a superset. Rest 60 seconds after the second exercise, before you start again with exercise #1 unless stated otherwise.

Non-Stop Superset:

bre-footer-websiteStatic Lunges 3 sets of 6-8 reps (alternate between legs back and forth until all 3 sets are done)


1 set of walking lunges (using your bodyweight) performed for as many reps as you can do.

Leg Extensions 3 sets of 15-25 reps
Dumbbell Squats 3 sets of 8-12 reps

Wide Stance Dumbbell Squats (press with heels to engage the glutes & hamstrings) 3 sets of 10-15 reps
Lying Leg Curls 3 sets of 10-15 reps
Wide Stance Dumbbell Squats (press with heels to engage the glutes & hamstrings) 3 sets using the same weight as above performing as many repetitions as you can.

This routine should take you around 25-30 minutes. By the time you are done with this routine, your legs will be on fire! It helps to use a nice pre-workout like Super Charge from in order to help you get through it.

Try the routine out and let us know what you think.

Until next time, take care and train hard!




In order to achieve the best natural bodybuilding gains, you need to have the right mindset. In this natural bodybuilding article you will learn what the right mindset is to achieve the best natural bodybuilding gains.


Achieve Incredible Natural Bodybuilding Gains by Adopting the Mindset of a Successful Bodybuilder!
This week I talked to a friend of mine who has been very busy working over the Holidays, as this is the peak season for his business. As a result, he has not been able to do as much as he wanted to in the gym and also he has not been able to get in all the meals that he needs to on time either. As a result, he was very frustrated and contemplating perhaps just dropping the whole program until the beginning of the New Year when things would normalize for him. However, I advised against doing so for the following reasons:

CIMG15461. Stopping to train would lower his metabolism which in turn would lower his energy levels and thus make him less productive at work.

2. Though he cannot get in the gym as often, getting his workout in and following the diet as much as possible will prevent him from losing valuable muscle gains while making undesirable fat gains. This in turn prevents him from getting further depressed as he sees his body deteriorate.

3. Once January comes and he can start hitting the gym more often and following the meal schedule to the “T”, he will be in good shape and his body will respond very quickly to the more aggressive schedule. This is a very different scenario than the one he would have encountered if he would have stopped training and dieting altogether, as in this case, he would have needed to use at least a week to get his body conditioned for the weights again and it would have taken him an extra week, or maybe even two, to get rid of any body fat that he might have gained depending on how bad the diet was.

Be Flexible, Be Consistent, Be Prepared

Therefore, having said that, in order to be successful in bodybuilding you need to have the right mindset. Bodybuilding is both a physical and extremely psychological endeavor. Of course, we all get frustrated when our schedules are affected by work, or any other life circumstance that may be thrown our way. Life is full of monkey wrenches in case you haven’t noticed and it does not make it easy for us to get our workouts and meals in. Therefore, we have to fight aggressively and plan ahead if we want to get our workouts and meals in.

As bodybuilders we must keep our eyes on the ultimate goal, which is always more muscle mass with less body fat. In order to accomplish that one must be consistent with the training and diet. If for whatever reason the program that the bodybuilder has mapped out is too much of a time commitment at a certain period in life, then the solution is to modify the bodybuilding program to one that does fit the time schedule…be flexible. For instance, back in my engineering days there were periods when I had to work 60-70 hours a week, I modified my training to where I would hit the gym 5 days a week for 40-45 minutes of weight training. Since I had no time to do cardiovascular
exercise, I would superset antagonistic muscles in order to get some sort of cardiovascular effect (refer to my abbreviated bodybuilding plan at the end of this article). That is all I could afford to do at the time. I always tried to get my training in before work, but if for some reason I would miss it in the morning, then I always had lunchtime to make it up or later in the evening after work. Worst case, there was always the weekend for makeup sessions. Regarding meals, I always brought in all of my meals with me pre-prepared and also enough Meal Replacement Powders for those times that I was really on the run.

Some of you for whatever reason may not even be able to do more than three sessions a week. If this is the case, then no issue; make the most out of the time that you do have available to train. The key to making lasting bodybuilding gains at the end of the day is that you have a realistic plan that can be executed consistently, not trying to follow one that looks really good in paper but cannot be executed. You will get to where you want to go, it may just take a little bit longer depending on how much time you can dedicate to reaching your goals.

Achieve Bodybuilding Gains by Adopting the Mindset of a Successful Bodybuilder!

_DSC7424-9-1signHere is what the mindset of a successful bodybuilder looks like:

1. The successful bodybuilder analyzes his/her time commitments and creates a bodybuilding plan that suits his/her situation.

2. He/She prepares all meals in advance along with liquid meals in order to prevent missing meals.

3. If the plan is affected for whatever reason, instead of being depressed about it and leaving it, a modification is made in order to continue execution. So for instance if a training session is missed, then it is performed on the following day. If a meal is missed, then it is consumed as soon as possible. If an unscheduled cheat meal is consumed, then the bodybuilder gets right back on the diet on the following meal instead of blowing the diet for the whole day, or week.

In a nutshell, for any challenge that the bodybuilder faces, a solution is researched and executed in order to continue with the bodybuilding lifestyle.

There is no room for frustration nor thoughts of dropping the bodybuilding plan in the mindset of a successful bodybuilder. Always think damage control, never “falling off the wagon”, so to speak, as once off, you run the risk of never getting back on.

In my fifteen years involved in bodybuilding, I have noticed that this is the mindset of the most successful bodybuilders. Successful bodybuilders always look for solutions while the non-successful ones always look for excuses.

Abbreviated Bodybuilding Split Workout Routine For Busy Bodybuilders

This routine I used with tons of success during my busy years working as an engineer. If lack of time to workout is an issue, this workout plan will bring you awesome results!

Workout (A) – Chest/Back/Abs

Triset #1:
Incline Bench Press 3 sets of 10-12 reps
Wide Grip Pull-ups to Front 3 sets of 10-12 reps
Crunches 3 sets of 15-20 reps

Triset #2:
Chest Dips 3 sets of 10-12 reps
Close Grip Chins (Reverse Grip) 3 sets of 10-12 reps
Hanging Leg Raises 3 sets of 15-20 reps

Triset #3:
Incline Flyes 2-3 sets of 10-12 reps
Low Pulley Rows 2-3 sets of 10-12 reps
Bicycle Crunches 2-3 sets of 15-20 reps

Workout (B) – Shoulders, Biceps, Triceps

Triset #1:
Upright Rows 3 sets of 10-12 reps
Triceps Pushdowns 3 sets of 10-12 reps
Incline Curls 3 sets of 10-12 reps

Triset #2:
Bent Over Laterals 3 sets of 10-12 reps
Concentration Curls 3 sets of 10-12 reps
Lying Dumbbell Triceps Extensions 3 sets of 10-12 reps

Triset #3:
Lateral Raises 2-3 sets of 10-12 reps
Hammer Curls 2-3 sets of 10-12 reps
Overhead Dumbbell Triceps Extensions 2-3 sets of 10-12 reps

Workout (C) – Thighs, Hamstrings, Calves

Triset #1:
Squats (Medium/Wide) * 3 sets of 10-12 reps
Lying Leg Curls 3 sets of 10-12 reps
Standing Calf Raises 3 sets of 12-15 reps

Triset #2:
Leg Press (Close Stance; feet and legs together) 3 sets of 10-12 reps
Standing Leg Curl 3 sets of 10-12 reps
Calf Press 3 sets of 12-15 reps

Triset #3:
Leg Extensions 2-3 sets of 10-12 reps
Stiff Legged Dead-lifts or Lunges (Pressing with heels) 2-3 sets of 10-12 reps
Seated Calf Raises 2-3 sets of 15-20 reps

*Note: Perform squats with a medium stance and when you hit failure, then change to a wide stance and keep the reps coming until you hit failure again. If you suffer from back problems you can substitute for a leg press machine and use the same technique.


CIMG1445Workout Frequency

This routine can be performed as little as 3 days a week and as much as 6 days. All you have to do is rotate workouts A, B, and C.

Rest in Between Tri-sets

After each tri-set you can rest 1 minute to 90 seconds at the most. Keep up a fast pace. Also remember that there is no rest between the exercises in the tri-set. So for instance, you will go from Incline Bench Press to Wide Grip Pull-ups to Crunches and then rest 1 minute before starting again.

If you find the information of this website useful but you need more direct help in order to achieve your goals, sign up to my online coaching program below.

Until next time, take care and train hard!






Disproportionate muscle growth, or having muscles on one side of the body grow more than on the other, is a normal problem in natural bodybuilding that beginners who are just getting started encounter. Listed below are my recommendations on how to deal with this problem, with sample natural bodybuilding routines on how to fix an uneven chest and shoulders.

The first thing that I would do is check your form. When one is a beginner, the stronger side (typically the right one if one is right-handed though this is not always the case) tends to do more work than the other one resulting in disproportionate development.

My recommendations to fix this are:

1.Practice perfect form: By ensuring proper form not only you ensure that the targeted muscles are the ones doing the work but also that both sides are putting an equal amount of force as the movement is performed, thus preventing imbalances.

2.Concentrate on activating the muscles of the weak side: When performing the movement, really concentrate on using and squeezing the muscles of your weak side to move the weight. This extra concentration will ensure that your dominant side is not the one doing the work.

3.Perform extra sets of unilateral movements to only target the underdeveloped area: Doing a few extra sets that solely focus on your weak side will teach the body to better activate the muscle fibers of that side.


Sample Natural Bodybuilding Routines That Fix Disproportionate Muscle Growth
Listed below are a couple of examples of how you can set up a routine that will help you fix your imbalances.

Example #1: Chest Natural Bodybuilding Routine


•Incline Bench Press 4 sets of 8-12 reps

•Unilateral Dumbbell Press 4 sets of 8-12 (Ensure that the dumbbell is light enough as you will need to balance yourself)


•Chest Dips 3 sets of 8-12

•Unilateral Incline Flyes 3 sets of 8-12

Example #2: Shoulder Natural Bodybuilding Routine


•Unilateral Lateral Raise 3 sets of 12-15

•Upright Rows 3 sets of 8-12


•Bent Over Laterals 3 sets of 10-12

•Unilateral Shoulder Dumbbell Press 3 sets of 12-15

Routine Notes: Only rest 1 minute in between supersets and watch those lagging areas grow.


What If One Whole Side of the Body Is Visibly More Developed Than the Other One?

If one side of the body is visibly more developed than the other, as often happens to athletes who practice sports like bowling, where one side is used predominantly, then I would recommend dedicating whole workouts to exercising only the weak side.

The sample natural bodybuilding workouts below illustrate how to set up a unilateral bodybuilding routine that for example purposes is targeting the left side of the body (as the right side is the more developed one):


Workout (A) Chest/Back/Biceps/Triceps (Monday)

Workout (B) Delts/Thighs/Hamstrings/Calves (Tuesday)

Off (Wednesday)

Workout (C) Chest/Back/Biceps/Triceps (Thursday)

Workout (D) Delts/Thighs/Hamstrings/Calves (Friday)

Off (Weekend)


Workouts (A) and (B) train both sides of the body equally while Workouts (C) and (D) should just consist of unilateral movements for the left side only. See the sample unilateral workouts below:


Workout (C)

•Unilateral Incline Dumbbell Press 4 sets of 8-12 reps

•Unilateral Flat Dumbbell Press 4 sets of 8-12 reps

•Unilateral Pulldown (use a pulley) 4 sets of 8-12 reps

•Unilateral Dumbbell Row 4 sets of 8-12 reps

•Concentration Curl 3 sets of 8-12 reps

•Hammer Curl 3 sets of 8-12 reps

•Triceps Pushdown (Use Pulley; Palm of hand facing down) 3 sets of 8-12 reps

•Overhead Dumbbell Triceps Extension (left arm only) 3 sets of 8-12 reps


Workout (D)

•Unilateral Shoulder Press 3 sets of 8-12 reps

•Unilateral Rear Delt Machine 3 sets of 8-12 reps

•Unilateral Lateral Raise 2 sets of 8-12 reps

•Lunges (left side only) 4 sets of 8-12 reps

•Unilateral Leg Press (left side only) 3 sets of 8-12 reps

•Unilateral Leg Extensions 2 sets of 8-12 reps

•Unilateral Leg Curls 4 sets of 8-12 reps

•Unilateral Calf Press 3 sets of 8-12 reps

Workout Notes: Only rest 1 minute in between sets.

I hope that this gets your questions on uneven muscle growth answered!

Take care and train hard!

Until next time, take care and train hard!







The myths about women’s weight training and female bodybuilding do not ever seem to go away. With this article, I’d like to share the facts regarding weight training and female bodybuilding.

Women’s Weight Training Myth #1 -Weight training makes you bulky and masculine.

Due to the fact that women do not, and cannot, naturally produce as much testosterone (one of the main hormones training-at-home-small-e1342483209910responsible for increasing muscle size) as males do, it is impossible for a woman to gain huge amounts of muscle mass by merely touching some weights. Unfortunately, the image that may come to your mind is that of professional female bodybuilders. Most of these women, unfortunately, use anabolic steroids (synthetic testosterone) along with other drugs in order to achieve that high degree of muscularity. In addition, most also have good genetics coupled with an unbelievable work ethic that enable them to gain muscle quickly when they spend hours in the gym lifting very heavy weights. Believe me when I say that they do not look like that by accident. Women who conduct weight training without the use of steroids get the firm and fit cellulite-free looking body that you see in most fitness/figure shows these days.

Women’s Weight Training Myth #2 – Exercise increases your chest size.

Sorry girls. Women’s breasts are composed mostly of fatty tissue. Therefore, it is impossible to increase breast size through weight training. As a matter of fact, if you go below 12 percent body fat, your breast size will decrease. Weight training does increase the size of the back, so this misconception probably comes from confusing an increase in back size with an increase in cup size. The only way to increase your breast size is by gaining fat or getting breast implants.

Women’s Weight Training Myth #3 – Weight training makes you stiff and musclebound.

If you perform all exercises through their full range of motion, flexibility will increase. Exercises like flyes, stiff-legged deadlifts, dumbbell presses, and chin-ups stretch the muscle in the bottom range of the movement. Therefore, by performing these exercises correctly, your stretching capabilities will increase.

Women’s Weight Training Myth #4 – If you stop weight training your muscles turn into fat.

This is like saying that gold can turn into brass. Muscle and fat are two totally different types of tissue. What happens many times is that when people decide to go off their weight training programs they start losing muscle due to inactivity (use it or lose it) and they also usually drop the diet as well. Therefore bad eating habits combined with the fact that their metabolism is lower due to inactivity, and lower degrees of muscle mass, give the impression that the subject’s muscle is being turned into fat while in reality what is happening is that muscle is being lost and fat is being accumulated.

Women’s Weight Training Myth #5 – Weight training turns fat into muscle.

More alchemy. This is the equivalent of saying that you can turn any metal into gold; don’t we wish! The way a body transformation occurs is by gaining muscle through weight training and losing fat through aerobics and diet simultaneously. Again, muscle and fat are very different types of tissue. We cannot turn one into the other.

_DSC7768-2Women’s Weight Training Myth #6 – As long as you exercise you can eat anything that you want.

How I wish this were true also! However, this could not be further from the truth. Our individual metabolism determines how many calories we burn at rest and while we exercise. If we eat more calories than we burn on a consistent basis, our bodies will accumulate these extra calories as fat regardless of the amount of exercise that we do. This myth may have been created by people with such high metabolic rates (hardgainers) that no matter how much they eat or what they eat, they rarely meet or exceed the amount of calories that they burn in one day unless they put their mind to doing so. Therefore, their weight either remains stable or goes down. If you are confused about nutrition, please read Nutrition Basics.

Women’s Weight Training Myth #7 – Women only need to do cardio and if they decide to lift weights, they should be very light.

First of all, if you only did cardio then muscle and fat would be burned for fuel. One needs to do weights in order to get the muscle building machine going and thus prevent any loss of muscle tissue. Women that only concentrate on cardio will have a very hard time achieving the look that they want. As far as the lifting of very light weights, this is just more nonsense. Muscle responds to resistance and if the resistance is too light, then there will be no reason for the body to change.

Women Should Train Hard


I have trained with women that train as hard as I do and they look nothing but feminine. If you want to look great, don’t be afraid to pick up the weights and lift hard!

I hope this helps!

Until next time, take care and train hard!







training-at-home-small-e1342483209910In this natural bodybuilding shoulders and arms workout video I get to coach my two friends Steven and Natasha. They started their fitness journey 4 weeks ago with my wife Cecile coaching them since the beginning. This past Monday, I did not have a chance to train before they came so I decided to join in and perform the workout that Cecile prepared for them. Since Cecile has done such a stellar job with her coaching (and they have followed the instructions to the letter; including the diet) they are now ready to follow a much more advanced program. This is only because Cecile was able to accelerate their progress based on how their body responded to the various training routines of the weeks prior.

At any rate, here is the workout that Cecile filmed of us. As you will see, I coach them through this session.

If you are looking for a new shoulders/arms workout, try out this routine and let us know how it works for you!


Dumbbell Shoulder Press 3×10-15 reps
Bent Over Lateral Raises 3×10-15 reps

Lateral Raises 3×10-15 reps
Dumbbell Upright Rows 3×6-15 reps


Triceps Pushdowns 3×10-15 reps
Triceps Pushdowns (reverse grip) 3xfailure with same weight as above

Triceps Bench Dips 3xfailure with bodyweight (use weight if you can for 10 reps minimum and then drop the weight and keep on going)
Dumbbell Curls 3×10-15 reps

Reverse Grip Preacher Machine Curls 3×10-15 reps
Preacher Machine Curls 3×10-15 reps

Only rest 90 seconds between supersets.

After the workout we had a wonderful Labrada Lean Pro8 shake mixed with IsoLean Pro and PowerCarb. (To find out more information and how to save up to 50% on these bodybuilding supplements: click here)

Until next time, take care and train hard!






Natural Bodybuilding Question: Is fruit juice the best drink for hydration & bodybuilding workout performance?

Answer: The short answer is NO. The reason for that is the following: unless you are a skinny hardgainer that is having a lot of issues gaining muscle, fruit juice is just a whole bunch of sugar calories. For example, 8 ounces of grape juice yields approximately 40 grams of simple carbs in the form of sugar. Caloric wise, that comes out to 160 calories. Now, imagine if grape juice is someone’s preferred form of drink for staying hydrated. If that is the case, assuming ten 8-ounce glasses a day, we are looking at 1,600 calories a day!

On top of that, we are not talking about the natural fresh squeezed variety. Big difference with the store variety as the sugar content of the store juice is way higher than the one obtained by squeezing a fruit.

The best way to stay hydrated is to drink spring water. Keep a water bottle with you at all times. Drink .66 x your bodyweight (measured in pounds) in ounces of water each day. So for example, if you are 200-lbs, be sure to drink 132 ounces of water each day.

store_powercarb_bigNow if we are talking about staying hydrated throughout the workout, water again is the best bet. However, if you can afford it, there is a product called PowerCarb from that helps tremendously and you can mix this with your water in order to achieve better hydration and workout performance. I mix it up with my water and 3 scoops of BCAAs. Powercarb is a complex carb whose molecular weight has been manipulated in order to allow for fast absorption into the bloodstream (faster than even glucose). One scoop has 20 grams of carbs and it has the right amount of electrolytes (meaning potassium and sodium) in order to better hydrate you. I also take one tablet of potassium as well. I put in between 20-25 ounces of spring water per scoop of Powercarb. The BCAAs turn this hydration drink into a powerful recovery drink. You can also put creatine as well into this drink. I personally take 2.5 grams of creatine before the workout and mix another 2.5 grams with this drink as I consume it during the workout (I finish my last sip by the time I am done).

So in conclusion, for hydration purposes, I use spring water throughout the day and 1 scoop of PowerCarb + 3 scoops of BCAAs + 1 Potassium table during the workouts.

I hope this helps!

Until next time, take care and train hard!





When it comes to gaining lean muscle mass, most people (especially teenagers who are just getting started) think that bodybuilding supplements are the most important part of the equation. However, this could not be any further from the truth. Supplements are just additions to an already good nutrition and training program. Besides determination, nutrition and training are the most important components of a bodybuilding program along with rest and recovery next to them. Once all of those aspects of your program are maximized, then you can start thinking of adding supplements to your program.

Please understand that supplements do not make up for improper training, or lack thereof, or a low quality diet. Supplements are good because they prevent us from getting any nutritional deficiencies. The increased activity levels from your new exercise program will make your body have greater demands for vitamins and minerals, which will increase the probability of you suffering a deficiency without supplementation. Even a slight nutrient deficiency can sabotage muscle growth.

Can’t we get all the nutrients we need from food alone? We cannot rely solely on food nowadays to provide us with all the vitamins and minerals that our body needs because the processing of foods before they get to the supermarket, cooking, air, and even light have already robbed your foods of most of the vitamins that they have to offer. If you are deficient in one or more nutrients your body may not be able to build muscle and burn fat properly. In addition, because as you will soon find out, bodybuilding nutrition requires several feedings per day, some supplements can make it more convenient for us to accomplish that.

As a teenager who practices bodybuilding, I would focus my bodybuilding supplements program on:

  • A good set of multiple vitamins and minerals to avoid any nutritional deficiencies.
  • A good protein powder to take in between real meals so that it is easier and more convenient for you to increase your protein to the levels that you need. A good tub of high quality protein like Pro V60 will do the trick. If you need to gain weight however because you are a hardgainer (a person with a fast metabolism who has issues gaining weight) then I would go for a high quality weight gainer that is low in sugars and that has a variety of fast released and slow released proteins like Lean Body Mass 60.
  • A couple of tablespoons of good fats such as flax oil in order to cover your essential fatty acids needs. You can add these to your shakes.

I would save the creatine, and other more advanced supplements, for later on in your bodybuilding journey, once you have achieved some pretty solid bodybuilding gains.

Definitely, stay away from any testosterone boosting supplementation. Right now (since you are a teenager) your body naturally produces a ton of anabolic steroids (testosterone and growth hormone mainly) that will greatly help you in your quest to build muscle rapidly while losing body fat. Anything that you do trying to further boost your testosterone production may do the exact opposite. Save testosterone boosters for when your body starts to slowly decline in testosterone production, which is around 25 years old. However, research shows that 3,000 mg of Vitamin C lower cortisol levels (a muscle wasting hormone that does the exact opposite of what testosterone does) so 1000mg of Vitamin C at Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner will actually help you in your quest to a more muscular body.

The supplementation program above, in conjunction with a good bodybuilding diet, a good training program based off from basic exercises, rest (yes, you need at least 8 hours of sleep each night) and the determination to execute your bodybuilding program day in and day out will take you to where you want to be.

Convenient Supplements

If budget allows instead of a 5-lb protein tub, you can opt for easier to carry and more convenient items like Protein Bars, Meal Replacement Powders or Ready-To-Drink Shakes. Labrada Nutrition offers several top-notch bars, meal replacement powders and ready-to-drink shakes in their Lean Body line. These not only offer great nutrition, but have a taste to match as well. However, convenience comes with an added cost so if budget is tight, simply carry the servings you will need of your protein powder individually sealed in a Ziploc ® bag in your cooler and mix them with water or milk when it is time to consume. You will need a shaker bottle for this but high quality proteins these days are instantized and therefore mix rather easily.

To find out more information and how to save up to 50% on bodybuilding supplements: click here

Until next time, take care and train hard!






Question: My son just started doing some natural bodybuilding training and though I am very happy about that, I have heard that lifting too heavy a weight will cause growth to be stunted in kids. Is there an ideal weight range that my son can use so that he can reach his bodybuilding goals but also attain his ultimate height?

Answer: The whole notion of growth being stunted by natural bodybuilding training is a myth that I have been fighting for years. In conversations with my grandfather who used to be an Orthopedic Surgeon graduated from Northwestern University with top honors, I learned that as long as the resistance is not so high that it would cause the bones to become more dense and thus close the epiphysis (the growth area of a long bone) then there should not be any detrimental effects.

As a matter of fact, the American Academy of Pediatrics recently changed their policy (PEDIATRICS Vol. 107 No. 6 June 2001, pp. 1470-1472) regarding this topic by stating that “strength training programs do not seem to adversely affect linear growth and do not seem to have any long-term detrimental effect on cardiovascular health” as evidenced in recent studies.

I should also point out that the compression forces on your son’s legs and spine are far greater in running and jumping than they will ever be in a bodybuilding exercise like squatting. Compression forces in running and jumping can exceed 5 times his bodyweight. If he’s not squatting over 700 pounds, he’s generating greater compression in normal daily activities.


Ideal Training Weight

I wouldn’t recommend that he lift any weight that he can’t do in a controlled fashion and with perfect form for at least 10 repetitions until he’s 18 or so. A weight that he can perform with perfect form for 10-15 repetitions will give him excellent bodybuilding results. Once 18, he can introduce weeks of heavier lifting, never going below 5 repetitions, as in my opinion, that is not needed for bodybuilding.

To be honest, when it comes to kids and bodybuilding training my concern isn’t so much the risk of stunting growth (which won’t happen with proper training); I am more concerned about the risk of injuring tendons, ligaments, or joints that are unused to the demands of heavy lifting. This is the reason why I can never emphasize enough the importance of proper weight selection and perfect exercise execution. [Note: for a GREAT programs with solid videos that teach the best exercise execution please take a look at my MI-40 review here]


Youngsters and Weight Training

At what age can a teenage boy can start working out with weights has always been a topic of debate. Some people say that weights should not be touched until after all of the growing is done or else you could affect the growth platelets and stunt your growth. Others say it is OK to start lifting weight at an early age. I have arrived at the following conclusions based on the latest research on this subject.

I believe that youngsters (anybody less than 14 years old) are better off doing exercises with just their body weight. If you are under 14 years of age, focus on bodyweight exercises like squats, lunges, dips, pull-ups, pushups, one legged calf raises. Stick to proper form and higher repetition ranges (15-20 reps) in order to train the nervous system to activate the muscle fibers. The following exercises should compose a youngster’s program:

running or fast walking
squats with no weights
lunges with no weights
calf raises with no weight
leg raises

Depending on the age and motivation of the person, anywhere between 2-5 sets of each exercise for the maximum amount of reps possible in good form is sufficient. There should be 30 seconds of rest in between exercises and they should be performed 3 times a week.

An additional 15-20 minutes of fast walking or running on rest days is enough exercise for anyone who wishes to start an exercise program before the age of 14.

14-year-olds can start working out with weights as long as they’re practicing perfect form and staring out with a beginners program like this one: Bodybuilding Routine for Those Who Are Just Getting Started


If you look at it, lifting weights didn’t do a thing to stunt the growth of Shaquille O’Neal, David Robinson, Karl Malone, Michael Vick, etc. All started lifting in their early teens, and all have gone on to be over 6′ tall and star in professional sports. Dave Draper and Arnold Schwarzenegger started lifting younger than that; again, both are 6’1″ or taller. Many high school teams start their freshmen on lifting programs, meaning your son started at a perfectly appropriate age.

Provided that exercise form, proper weight selection and safety are always emphasized, your son won’t find his growth stunted by lifting; rather, he’ll find that he grows into his body much better and much more quickly than most of the peers around him.

Until next time, take care and train hard!







What Is The 10 Sets of 10 Reps Bodybuilding Workout and How Can It Be Used To Gain Weight?

The 10 sets of 10 reps bodybuilding workout has been used in bodybuilding circles for years in order to break through plateaus and make weight gains in the form of lean muscle mass. Many people have claimed to its invention, but regardless of who came up with it, it has been used with great success by awesome bodybuilders from the past such as Vince Gironda, as well as Dave Draper and Arnold Schwarzenegger. Today, many athletes on the know still use this method and even elite strength coaches, such as Charles Poliquin, are great advocates of it and use it on their Olympic athletes when they are in need of gaining muscle weight quickly. I’ve used this method myself without fail since early on my bodybuilding career. It never ceases to yield great results. As a matter of fact, early on when I was less informed, I thought that I had invented it. That was until I found out that this bodybulding workout has been around since the early 60s!

The 10 sets of 10 reps bodybuilding workout has proven time and time again to be fantastic at increasing muscle mass through the systematic fatigue of the muscle fibers being worked on. In order to implement a 10×10 routine, a mass building exercise is chosen and a weight that you can perform for 15 reps or so is selected. However, you will stop your set once you achieve 10 reps. Your rest in between sets should be limited to a minute and you need to refrain yourself from resting more as you start fatiguing since increasing the rest time would defeat the purpose of the routine, which is to cause systematic fatigue on a specific muscle. The goal of this bodybuilding workout routine is to use the same weight for all ten sets and to be able to perform all sets for 10 reps in good form. You will notice that as fatigue sets in, the sets become more and more challenging. You may not be able to perform all sets for 10 reps. If that is the case, then start lowering the weight once you do a set where less than 10 reps are performed. Once you can do all 10 sets for 10 reps, then it is time for you to go up in weight.

How Many Exercises Do I Need To Use In The 10 Sets of 10 Reps Bodybuilding Workout Program?

Is there a need for more exercises once you do the one for 10 sets of 10? I always like to include a second exercise for the larger muscle groups in order to hit a different angle but the second exercise is more of an isolation type and I just perform it for 3 sets of 10-12 reps.

Now let’s take a look at my recommended 10 sets of 10 reps program.

Mass Building 10 Sets of 10 Reps Bodybuilding Workout Routine


Squats 10 sets of 10 reps (no rest)
Leg Curls 10 sets of 10 reps (1 minute of rest)

Leg Extensions 3 sets of 10-12 reps (no rest)
Stiff Legged Dead-lifts 3 sets of 10-12 reps (1 minute of rest)

Calf Raises 10 sets of 10 reps (1 minute of rest)


Incline Bench Press 10 sets of 10 reps (no rest)
Wide Grip Pull-up to Front 10 sets of 10 reps (1 minute of rest)

Flat Bench Flyes 3 sets of 10-12 reps (no rest)
Low Pulley Rows 3 sets of 10-12 reps (1 minute of rest)

Leg Raise & Crunch Combination 10 sets of 10 reps (1 minute of rest)


Upright Rows 10 sets of 10 reps (1 minute of rest)

Bent Over Lateral Raises 3 sets of 10-12 reps (1 minute rest)

Incline Curls 10 sets of 10 reps (no rest)
Triceps Dips 10 sets of 10 reps (1 minute of rest)


Workout Frequency

I’ve benefited from doing each body part twice a week so I would perform Workout (A) on Monday/Thursday, Workout (B) on Tuesday/Friday and Workout (C) on Wednesday/Saturday. I’ve noticed however that this type of frequency works best for Endomorphs like myself, which are people with a slow metabolism who as a result have faster recuperation capabilities. You can also do 3 days on and one day off or simply workout from Monday through Friday rotating workouts. So the first week you will end the week with Workout (B) and as a result you will start the following week with Workout (C) on Monday.

Mesomorphs, or naturally muscular and lean people, fare well by performing the routine in the following manner:

Day 1-Workout (A), Day 2-Rest, Day 3-Workout (B), Day 4-Rest, Day 5-Workout (C), Day 6-Start cycle again with Workout (A). With this sequence, each body part is trained once every five days. This routine also provides good recuperation for those of you that work over 40 hours a week and cannot afford to be at the gym for 6 days.

Ectomorphs, or hardgainers, are those of you who are naturally skinny and have a super fast metabolism. If this is your case, then you are best served by training every other day, and if you cannot train over the weekends, then just Monday, Wednesday and Friday performing Workout (A) on Monday, Workout (B) on Wednesday and Workout (C) on Friday.

When To Change

After going through Workouts (A), (B), and (C) six times, change your routine to one that is heavier in weights (with around 5-6 reps mostly) and contains less sets. A good routine would be one that uses 5 sets of 5 reps with different basic exercises than the one above.

Bodybuilding Diet Advice

In order to benefit most from this routine, remember that you have to nourish yourself! Weight training provides the spark for muscle growth while food provides the raw materials required for making bodybuilding gains. For more information on which type of diet to follow, please take a look at my Bulking Up Rules for the Natural Bodybuilder article.

Bodybuilding Supplements

A good supplementation program is imperative in order to recover and make the best possible gains from such a demanding bodybuilding program. Please take a look at my Bodybuilding Supplementation Basics article, my Creatine Monohydrate Basics article, and my Preserve Lean Mass With Glutamine article.

Word on Rest and Recovery

hugo-side-shotDon’t forget that muscles grow when you rest, not while you are at the gym. Therefore, make sure that you get your 8 hours of sleep or at the very least 7 hours each night and make up any lost sleep over the weekends. Not meeting your sleep requirements on a consistent basis leads to sleep depravation, a condition which besides creating constantly low energy levels, promotes a hormonal environment that increases the muscle destroying (and fat depositing) hormone cortisol and lowers your muscle producing hormone testosterone. For more information on how much sleep you require, how to determine if you are sleep deprived, what steps to take in order to ensure a good night’s sleep, and finally, the maladies caused by sleep depravation, take a look at the articles below.

The Sleep Cycle & the 8 Maladies Caused By Sleep Deprivation

Learn what the four phases of the sleep cycle are, how much on the average you should be sleeping each night for maximum results and what happens when you get sleep deprived.

4 Guidelines To Ensuring A Good Night Sleep

Learn 4 guidelines that you can follow to ensure a good night sleep.


Well, there you have the most results producing bodybuilding workout program ever for gaining lean muscle weight, in my opinion. If you are ready to change your bodybuilding workout routine, give this program a try and provided that your nutrition, supplementation and rest are in order, then it will not fail to give you the bodybuilding gains that you are looking for.

Until next time, take care and train hard!






In today’s natural bodybuilding video blog, I cover with my good friend Rodzilla whether workouts performed with high reps or low reps are better for gaining muscle.


It is best to use both high reps and low reps in order to build muscle optimally. So basically you use periodization in which should do loading phases (3-4 weeks) in which you do higher reps (10-15 reps…sometimes going as high as 20-30 reps). Research indicates that you do get hypertrophy even at the higher rep ranges. And then you should do a Growth Phase in which you cut down on the volume (limiting sets to 10 total per body part; example: 4 sets of exercise #1 and then 3 sets for exercises #2 and #3) and then in terms of reps 5-8 reps.


Keep in mind that you need to change your routines in order to keep the results coming. By following periodization principles, you will be able to avoid overtraining. Try to finish your workouts within 60 minutes in order to keep your testosterone levels high and cortisol levels low. That, combined with proper form and muscle tension will give you the best results possible.

Here is a sample periodized routine: Natural Bodybuilding Workout With Periodization

Hope that this bodybuilding tip helps. Please let me know what other tips you would like us to talk about.

Until next time, take care and train hard!





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