10: FIND OUT WHAT WORKS FOR YOU, NOT SOMEONE ELSE
These two maxims work together. Never stop learning from FLEX, training videos, Internet sites and your fellow bodybuilders. Apply various training philosophies, techniques and exercises to your routine. Incorporate those that work best for your body and discard those that don’t measure up.
9: FOCUS ON THE MUSCLE(S), NOT THE WEIGHT
When swinging a baseball bat at a pitched ball, do you watch the bat’s motion? If so, you’ll be very lucky to get a hit. The same applies to hammering a nail. Follow the hammer up and down in broad swoops and there’s a good chance it’ll hit your thumb, not the nailhead. Like bats and hammers, weights are merely tools. If you’re following a weight’s path, chances are you’re not fully feeling your targeted muscles working. Forget the weight and concentrate on how your muscles stretch and contract against the resistance.
8: NUTRITION IS PARAMOUNT
The top 20 is supposed to be a training-only guide, but you can’t fully separate nutrition from training. After all, your pre- and postworkout meals (which may be protein shakes) are the most important ones for growth. It’s likely that more people curtail gains because of faulty nutrition than faulty workouts, so make certain you’re consuming enough protein and other essential nutrients throughout each day.
7: TRAIN HEAVY
This advice may seem to be at odds with number six. In fact, it sometimes is, for a few pros do prescribe using low reps for heavy, compound basics to build up a foundation of strength and size. Most of the time, however, “train heavy” is a motto to encourage you to push yourself as hard as safely possible.
6: MODERATE REPS ARE BEST MOST OF THE TIME
Some champs go down to four to seven reps on their heaviest sets, and a few regularly do reps in the 13-20 range, but most advocate sticking to the “sweet spot” of eight to 12 per set. Calves and abs are the most frequent exceptions to this general rule, as many pros advocate higher reps (13-20) for those bodyparts.
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