Monday, June 22, 2015

The Best Workout Playlists by Music Type

Music is one of the best motivators for athletes and bodybuilders. The right song can take you over the final minutes of a workout to push through with strong intensity. Losing yourself in music often allows you to drive past the sweat during your training regimen, and all you have to do is pump up the volume. We’ve compiled some of our favorite tunes to turn your workout into a motivational dance party!


Is today your HIIT session? Our Hip Hop playlist is ideal for your faster training intervals.

  • Hood Go Crazy – Tech N9ne
  • GDFR – Flo Rida
  • I Don’t Get Tired – Kevin Gates
  • Power – Kanye West
  • Pop That – French Montana

If you’re weight training and need something with powerful riffs and a more aggressive feel, our Rock/Alternative playlist is for you!

  • Giants – Bear Hands
  • Howlin’ For You – The Black Keys
  • Work This Body – Walk the Moon
  • I’m Good – The Mowgli’s
  • Juicebox – The Strokes

Going for a long-distance run? The Pop playlist will energize you over a longer period of time with high vocals and lively melodies.

  • Break Free – Ariana Grande
  • In For The Kill – La Roux
  • Heartbeat Song – Kelly Clarkson
  • Emergency – Icona Pop
  • You Make Me Feel – Cobra Starship

Sprinting or doing some competitive sports playing? Blast our EDM workout playlist for a stimulus boost.

  • Turn Up Da Bass – Goldfish
  • Where Are U Now – Jack U
  • Bangarang – Skrillex
  • Hey Mama – David Guetta
  • Delirious – Steve Aoki

Have a favorite musical genre or song to work on your gains? We’d love to hear about it – share it with us in the comments below!

Friday, June 12, 2015

Male Celebrity Body/Workout Transformations

Today, we are constantly bombarded by claims that “this machine will get you ripped in just two weeks!” and “these supplements are guaranteed to get you huge–with no extra work!” However, the real secret to getting healthy and achieving the body of your dreams is … there is no secret. There is no quick fix. Both losing weight and building muscle takes hard work. While certain workout supplements can help you along the way, you still have to regularly work out, challenge your body and consume a healthy diet to reach your body transformation goals. We’ve come up with a list of some of the most impressive male celebrity body transformations and male celebrity workouts to show you how much work getting huge really takes (even for celebrities).

Christian Bale as Batman


Christian Bale’s Batman physique is impressive, and even more impressive when you learn he dropped 33 percent of his normal body weight for his previous role in The Machinist. Yet, just six weeks after finishing The Machinist, Bale was bulked up and ready for the first Batman screen test. Bale completed such a feat by sticking to both a strict diet and an intense workout routine. Meals were eaten every 2-3 hours, and each meal consisted of a 1:2:3 ratio of proteins, carbohydrates and fats (or close to it). His workout training program consisted of one active rest day and six days of training with power movements, agility and speed training and compound exercises. Compound exercises require more than a single joint movement, such as a squat or military press, and help maximize the effectiveness of each workout.

Mark Wahlberg in Pain & Gain


Co-starring with Dwayne Johnson as bodybuilders, Mark Wahlberg gained 40 pounds of muscle in order to look the part in his 2013 movie Pain & Gain. Like Bale, Wahlberg also ate frequently in order to bulk up for the role–up to 10 meals per day –and also trained five days per week, and often even while on set.

"I’d start with benching, and then I’d do my squats and lunges, then I’d do a lot of old-school stuff,” Wahlberg said. “I’d literally do a row of machines at the Sports Club/LA. One set of every single machine all the way down the row. I’d leave the hotel at 4:30 in the morning—just as the nightclubs were letting out on South Beach. I’d walk in the gym as the door opened at 5:00 AM every day."


Gerard Butler in 300


Unlike many actors who bulk up for roles, Gerard Butler did not actually gain that much muscle for 300. Instead, he cut and trimmed down a lot, and “pumped up” before action scenes. While dropping weight may not literally add muscle, it does make you look bigger and stronger. The effect of just 10-15 pounds of fat loss is extremely dramatic. When you cut fat, you reveal the muscle underneath! When you’re in a rush to look lean and mean, it’s much easier to drop weight quickly than build new muscle. Butler cut down on fat by using HIIT (high intensity interval training) and circuit training five to six days per week, and eating only enough for recovery. High intensity training is effective and efficient–it focuses on intense resistance exercises that are designed to allow you to train harder but less often.

The body of your dreams is ready and waiting for you to sculpt it – all you have to do is work for it! Have your own favorite celebrity workout routine? We’d love to hear about it – share it with us in the comments below!

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

The Importance of a Cheat Day for Bodybuilders

For most people, dieting is simply not fun. One favorite thing that many dieters do is use the coveted “cheat day.” These scheduled cheats are days (or meals) that allow dieters to eat anything and everything they want to during that time. While many who are trying to shed pounds fear a cheat day will offset much of the work they’ve done, cheat meals can actually provide many benefits. We’ve complied some of our favorite reasons why you should let yourself enjoy having the occasional cheat day:


Low Calorie Diets Have a Cost – No matter how healthy you eat, when you restrict your calories you begin to create an energy deficit. Over time your body will begin to adjust to the lower number of calories you are eating and your metabolism will drop. Cheat days help trick your body into think it’s going to be receiving a large number of calories again soon and your metabolism will speed back up.

To Balance Your Protein & Hormone Levels – Leptin is a key protein that regulates both your appetite and your energy balance. It is the force behind whether or not you feel hungry, it is what decides how quickly you are burning calories and it is in charge of regulating your body weight and fat mass. When you fast, Leptin levels decrease and cause an increased appetite (making it harder to continue your diet) and decreased energy levels (making it hard to continue exercising regularly).

Ghrelin – a peptide hormone that signals the release of growth hormones – tends to increase with low-calorie diets, also leading to increased food take, and therefore body weight.

Thyroid hormones are also affected by caloric restrictions. These hormones play many roles within your body, including helping regulate your metabolic rate and growth throughout your body (like bone growth). Low calorie diets can cause lower thyroid levels, resulting in a lower metabolic rate. Weekly cheat days help your body re-balance and re-energize.


You’re More Likely to Stick with Your Diet – When you allow yourself cheat meals, it no longer means there are certain foods that are completely off limits. Instead, there are only specific times when it’s appropriate to eat them. Mentally, this makes dieting much easier for most people. Because results take time to see, it’s important you allow yourself regular breaks and rewards for sticking with your plans. Planning cheat days allows you to enjoy your indulgences rather than feel guilty about them.

Remember: cheat days are useful and enjoyable when they are scheduled and occasional. Too many cheat days (or too much overindulgence on your cheat days) will likely hurt your weight loss and muscle building efforts. For some people, regular cheat days may do more harm than good. If you find you have trouble sticking to your diet after a cheat day, try to limit your cheat days and set strict boundaries for your cheat meals so you can still enjoy the benefits of a cheat day without the adverse effects.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Best Bodybuilding Gyms in the World

While today 24 Hour Fitness and Planet Fitness type gyms can be found in just about every major city in the US, that doesn’t mean those are the only type of gyms there are. We’ve compiled a list of the best gyms in the world to help showcase the fact that a quality gym doesn’t have to be your typical brick-and-mortar structure – it can be just about anything, anywhere! The best gyms in the world are unique gyms that include new technology, a great atmosphere and the best bodybuilding equipment in the world:

#3 – Gold’s Gym: Venice, CA



Fan of the movie Pumping Iron? If so, this gym should definitely be on your bucket list! Arnold Schwarzenegger and the 1977 movie forever set in stone this Venice, CA Gold’s Gym’s status as the “Mecca of Bodybuilding.” Originally founded by legend Joe Gold, who trained at the world famous “Muscle Beach,” today Gold’s is the most known name in fitness and serves more than 3 million members in 28 countries around the world. With Arnold Schwarzenegger, Franco Columbu, Dave Draper, Frank Zane and many more bodybuilding pioneers having graced this Gold’s Gym location, it’s safe to say it is the dream of many bodybuilders to lift here.

#2 – The Original Temple Gym: Birmingham, UK


20 years after being founded in 1962, current owner and 6x Mr. Olympia Dorian Yates transformed Temple Gym into one of the best bodybuilding gyms in the world. Set in a basement, the original Temple Gym is famous for its hardcore dungeon-like setting and is notorious for its reputation as a serious weight training facility. Accepting of anyone and everyone who seeks positive body changes, this gym includes equipment with the latest technology and is home to original Nautilus equipment!

#1 – Metroflex Gym: Arlington, TX


The Metroflex Gym caters to serious, competitive bodybuilders and encourages intense and aggressive training. As the training ground of choice for over 100 bodybuilding and powerlifting champions, including Branch Warren and 8x Mr. Olympia Ronnie Coleman, this gym is guaranteed to help anyone serious about lifting sculpt the body of their dreams. Its equipment includes dumbbells up to 250 pounds, 450 pound lat pull downs and leg presses that will hold up to 2,500 pounds.

All around the world you can find gyms dedicated to serious bodybuilders. Whether you’ve been working out for years or you’re just now starting to lift, what’s important is you’re out there working to better yourself. Have your own favorite bodybuilding gym that’s not on the list? Tell us about it in the comment section below!