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Category: Physiology (page 1 of 2)

Your Form is Bad Because Your Mind Is Weak

Have you seen asymmetry in heavy lifts? The bench press where the sternum turns to the right. The squat where the left knee and left elbow stick out to the side. The deadlift stuck over on the right foot.

These happen. Often. If you haven’t noticed them, look out for them. It’s actually pretty cool.

But as a trainer, it’s frustrating. I can’t train you into that asymmetry. I can, but… what good could that possibly do? Now I have to stop you when I start to consistently see that.

But I’ve seen people shift over there almost immediately. I mean, like, rep two out of twenty. They know how to do the exercise, they just can’t. Their brains won’t let them. Why? Because ‘dey scared. Continue reading

Should you still workout if you’re feeling sick?

Length-Tension Relationship

Length-tension relationship refers to the overlapping of microfilaments in a sarcomere. Heads of the myosin proteins need to grab the binding sites of actin proteins. There are two halves of one sarcomere. During muscle contraction, each side grabs a different actin molecule, then they pull each actin closer together. This happens with a BUNCH of little myosin heads and actin binding sites at the same time.

Now if the actin molecules are too far apart, there are fewer myosin heads to latch onto fewer actin binding sites. The amount of active tension the muscle can actively produce on its own is then lower. There are simply fewer molecules working. So longer lengths mean less active tension.
A similar thing happens if the muscle gets too short; you just run out of room to contract.

This portion of the length-tension relationship defines the active properties of muscles. Muscles, though, can also produce passive tension.

As length increases, passive tension also increases. This is due to elastic properties of muscle, such as the tendons and surrounding connective tissue. These tissues stretch, just like a rubber band, and then enough force is produced to overcome the active tension deficit that occurs when a muscle lengthens.

Above is a graph of the relationship.

How to Build MASS – A Lesson in Intensity

The following videos will stick with me for the rest of my life.

I didn’t even watch them in order, but I could just see the intensity bleeding from that man’s body.

Continue reading

Conditioning Doesn’t Have to Burn: How a Meathead Used Cardio to Get Stronger

Working out is about finding a balance. Train too hard and you break down, but don’t train hard enough and you won’t get anywhere.

Those who tend to train too hard are people I call “fitness junkies”. They usually enjoy Crossfit, screaming, and a burning sensation in their muscles.

Let’s talk about why you need some easy days if you really want to get strong.
Continue reading

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