Showing posts with label Weight Training. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Weight Training. Show all posts

More Muscle Growth and Music


Look Beyond the Confines of  Convention For More Muscle Growth.

When I ask you to think of your two or three favorite sports supplements, what comes to mind?
Creatine … beta alanine … protein powder, maybe?

When we think of a performance-boosting supplement, typically what comes to mind is something we ingest, like creatine. However, science has shown us that if we bother to look beyond the confines of convention, what we find is a whole other realm of “ergogenic aids,” which don’t come in powders or pills.  Among the most potent of these unconventional performance “supplements,” according to recent research, is music.

The fact that we’re influenced by music should come as no big shocker.

 Those who work out to techno or head-bangin’ rock ’n’ roll have long recognized the intoxicating power of an adrenaline spiking song. But recent studies show that music does more than just get us going or “pump us up.” It may actually alter the body’s physiology, or as Rock ’n’ Roll Hall of Famer Carlos Santana puts it, “rearrange the molecular structure of the listener.”

The most recent of these studies investigating this peculiar phenomenon comes from the Department of Life Sciences at England’s Nottingham Trent University. In this study, published last year in the Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness, Dr. Attila Szabo and colleagues set out to investigate whether musical tempo and its manipulation during exercise affect maximal workload (measured in watts) achieved during progressive cycling.

To test this, the researchers recruited 24 male and female college students and had them each cycle in five separate test sessions that included exercising to no music (control); slow music; fast music; slow-to-fast music and finally fast-to-slow music. In the last two conditions, musical tempo was changed when the participant’s heart rate reached 70 percent of maximum.
In all test sessions, the participants started to cycle at 50 watts and then the workload was increased in increments of 25 watts every minute until self-declared exhaustion. Maximal-effort cycling was defined as the workload at the last completed minute of exercise.

Dr. Szabo's Conclusion:

According to Dr. Szabo, results showed that a significantly higher workload was accomplished when the participants worked out to progressively “faster-paced” music. “The participants preferred the slow-to-fast music sessions more than the other sessions,” says Dr. Szabo. “Switching to slow-to-fast music during progressive exercise results in the accomplishment of more work without proportional changes in heart rate.”

Whether these effects are due to an actual “rearrangement of the molecular structure” of the exerciser or simply to distraction from fatigue isn’t clear. What is apparent, however, is the powerful effect progressively faster paced music can have on increasing exercise workload. And, when you think about it, that’s all most conventional sports supplements do. Remember, typical supplements like creatine, for instance, have little direct effect on muscle size and strength. Instead, the accrual of strength is a response related to a greater workload and intensity of training that can be achieved.

Of course, with creatine, or any other supplement for that matter, consistency is the key to achieving a desired result. So, it stands to reason, if done consistently over a period of months, listening to progressively faster-paced, uplifting music during your workouts could very well be associated with an enhanced accrual of not only cardiovascular conditioning (as shown in this study) but perhaps even muscle strength in intense weight-training programs

Do You Want Bigger Biceps?

Do You Want Bigger Biceps? Load Up the Squat Bar. 

Here's Breaking Research You'll Want:

Monster Mix

European Journal of Applied Physiology:

A new study suggests that virtually every weight trainer who has consistently gone above and beyond “perceived” muscle failure has experienced the mysterious effect intense leg training can have on developing the muscles of the upper body.

Indeed, it’s a peculiar phenomenon where, seemingly, the more intensely a person trains his legs, the more muscle he’s able to pack onto his chest, back, bis, and tris.

For a long time, researchers didn’t know the exact physiological basis behind this phenomenon but postulated that it might stem from an effect whereby an intense workout “encourages” the body to release powerful anabolic hormones, which in turn improve whole-body protein metabolism (muscle growth).

In an effort to test this hypothesis, a team of exercise physiologists from the Norwegian University of Sport and Physical Education recently studied the hormonal responses of male weight trainers to high- and moderate-intensity leg workouts—with the results confirming the vital importance of training intensity for weight trainers wanting to maximize muscle growth.

In the study, which was published in the European Journal of Applied Physiology, Dr. Truls Raastad and colleagues had nine male weight trainers perform one moderate and one high-intensity strength exercise workout.

In the high-intensity workout, the load was 100% of each subject’s three-repetition maximum for squats and front squats, and 100% of each subject’s six-repetition maximum for leg extensions.

In the moderate-intensity workout, the load was 70% of the high-intensity protocol. Rest periods between sets were four to six minutes for both workouts. Blood samples were taken before, 30 minutes into, and every 15 minutes for the first hour after exercise.

Results showed that the acute response of the body’s primary muscle-building hormone testosterone was significantly greater during the high-intensity protocol as compared to the moderate-intensity protocol.

In addition, high-intensity exercise also stimulated a substantial release of growth hormone, although the release of this anabolic hormone didn’t seem to be as directly related to exercise intensity as was testosterone.

Pretty cool, isn’t it?

Make no mistake, training legs with 100% intensity is not a lazy person’s game—it requires discipline, drive, and determination.

But the rewards, according to this research, are well worth it.

It seems not only will intense leg training help you build strong, muscular legs, it will also help stimulate anabolic hormones that will make your upper-body workouts even more effective.

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The protein powder market is flooded with products that promise lean muscle gain and increased strength. However, when you begin using these protein powders for lean muscle gain, you realize they offer nothing more than a large amount of calories, low levels of protein and little nutritional value. Even worse, you experience an increase in body fat instead of lean muscle mass.

To help combat this problem in the market, TeamANR has scientifically developed Monster Mix to help bodybuilders and other fitness enthusiasts achieve the muscle growth they want. Monster Mix is an anabolic whey protein powder that uses natural ingredients like tongkat ali, creatine, rhodiola rosea extract and more to create a protein synthesis that is not found elsewhere on the market.

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Benefits of this natural all-in-one whey protein powder include improved recoverability, increase muscle hypertrophy and testosterone levels, and finally, a rise in human growth hormone levels. Most importantly, Monster Mix helps you achieve lean muscle growth quickly.

Monster Mix is the best muscle-gain supplement on the market. It combines 17 bodybuilding supplements into one high-powered formula. See what kind of difference Monster Mix makes for you in the gym.

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A Forgotten Workout Supplement Available at Your Local Supermarket

Supercharge Your Workouts With A Forgotten Supermarket Supplement: “Pennies-per-Day”

Overly-caffeinated pre-workout “energy” powders are all the rage among weight-training athletes today. But what if we told you there may be a better alternative that fuels clean energy and focus without the “crashes”? 

 An alternative that has been extensively studied by the U.S. military and proven effective at increasing strength and muscle? And, an alternative that you can pick up at your local supermarket for literally pennies per day? 

 Well, we’re here to tell you there is such an alternative–the commonly-available amino acid tyrosine, and as far as “focus supplements” go, it may be king of the hill. 

 Tyrosine is a direct precursor to the neurotransmitters dopamine, norepinephrine, and epinephrine. It has been estimated that nearly 90 percent of these brain neurotransmitters are synthesized directly from naturally occurring tyrosine. (4)

 Studies have shown that a combination of physical and mental stress can lead to significant decreases in norepinephrine levels in the brain,7 and norepinephrine is an extremely important neurotransmitter in muscular contraction, mental focus, motivation, etc. 

Studies have demonstrated that when norepinephrine levels are “running low,” secondary to stressful events, there is a direct correlation between that depletion and a decrease in performance.1 Because supplementing with tyrosine can restore norepinephrine levels, researchers believe it may be particularly effective at boosting performance. (2)

 One study, which addressed this issue back in 1989, strongly demonstrated that supplementing with a few grams of tyrosine significantly reduced stress-related decreases in both mood and performance. (2)  
The military has also studied tyrosine extensively. Their main interest is in how tyrosine can boost performance under stressful conditions. Scientific papers, published by the military, assessing the effects of tyrosine as an aid to stress resistance and increased performance among troops, strongly support the idea that supplemental tyrosine can delay fatigue and increase both mental and physical performance. (5,6 )
One of the leading scientists from NATO, J.R. Wurtman, summarized their findings by explaining, “If tyrosine can amplify catecholamine release when such an amplification is desirable, for example, to sustain performance and the ability to cope when the locus ceruleous has been depleted of its norepinephrine in prolonged stress situations, it may have considerable utility.” In English, that means, “If you take this stuff when you’re burned out, it may really pick you up and enhance performance.” 

 To see how well tyrosine would work in weight-training athletes, Dr. Jeff Stout and colleagues conducted a pilot study. The researchers recruited 14 male and female subjects. Half of them received 3 grams of tyrosine, and the other half received 3 grams of a cornstarch placebo (neither group knew if they were taking a placebo or the “real thing”), one hour before being put through a series of muscular endurance and strength tests. Dr. Stout notes that he really didn’t expect to see much of an effect, but to his surprise, the differences were incredibly pronounced and statistically significant. 

 Every subject in the tyrosine group showed substantial increases in strength and endurance after only one 3-gram dose, while the placebo group showed no statistically significant change. 

 The charts you see in this article show the astounding differences between the placebo group and the tyrosine group. Notice the 283 percent greater muscular power generated by the tyrosine group, as well as the 103 percent greater change in endurance strength. Of course, additional studies are needed to confirm these findings, but these preliminary results offer evidence that tyrosine may significantly boost training performance. Numerous scientific studies have shown that tyrosine indeed acts as a precursor to the catecholamine series of neurotransmitters and can increase brain norepinephrine concentration and activity. (3)


For a pre-workout boost, try taking 500 milligrams to 1,000 milligrams, 30 minutes prior to your workout. You can find quality tyrosine supplements at most supermarkets and health-food stores today.

  1.  References Cited: H. Anisman, et al., “Coping With Stress, Norepinephrine Depletion and Escape Performance,” Brain Res. 191 (1980) : 583-588. 
  2.  L.E. Banderet, “Treatment With Tyrosine, A Neurotransmitter Precursor, Reduces Environmental Stress in Humans,” Brain Res. Bull. 22 (1989) : 759-762. 
  3.  C.J. Gibson and R.J. Wurtman, “Physiological Control of Brain Norepinephrine Synthesis by Brain Tyrosine Concentration,” Life Sci. 22 (1978) : 1399-1406.
  4. J. Hoelzl, “Saint-Johns-Wort. An Alternative to Synthetic Antidepressants?” Pharm. Ztg. 139.46 (1994) : 9-29. 
  5. J.O. Owasoyo, et al., “Tyrosine and its Potential Use as a Countermeasure to Performance Decrement in Military Sustained Operations,” Aviat. Space Environ. Med. May (1992) : 364.
  6. Maj. C.A. Salter, “Dietary Tyrosine as an Aid to Stress Resistance Among Troops,” Military Medicine 154.3 (1989) : 144. 
  7. E.A. Stone, “Hypothalamic Norepinephrine After Acute Stress,” Brain Res. 35 (1971) : 260-263.

Slow Weight Training

One Simple Training Trick to Boost Muscle Strength 50 Percent

We’ve known for a while that “slow and steady” wins the race. Now it looks like it may make you substantially stronger, too.
According to a study published in the Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness, super-slow weight training may increase strength gains by 50 percent. Yes, 50 PERCENT!

In the study, researchers split 147 weight trainers among two groups. Both groups trained three times a week for eight weeks on a 13-exercise weight-training circuit.

The only difference between the groups was the speed at which they lifted and lowered the weight. One group trained at a conventional speed (2 seconds lifting, 1-second pause, 4 seconds lowering).

The other group was asked to dramatically slow things down (10 seconds lifting, 4 seconds lowering). At the beginning and end of the trial period, all of the participants were tested for their 10-rep max.

Results showed that super-slow training resulted in about a 50 percent greater increase in strength than regular-speed training. Specifically, the super-slow training group showed a mean increase in 10-rep max of 26.4 pounds. The regular-speed group experienced only a 17.6-pound increase.

Lead study researcher Dr. Wayne Westcott believes the results are due to the increase in lifting intensity seen with super-slow training.

“Slower repetition speed may effectively increase intensity throughout the lifting phase while decreasing momentum,” he says.