Best Workouts To Build Muscle

Best Workouts To Build Muscle

At Body Sculptors in Louisville, KY, we help people become their fittest and reach their fitness goals. We include all types of fitness, strength-building, endurance, balance, and flexibility. Many clients want to build muscle, and others want to boost their strength. Each goal requires a change in the fitness routine. Building larger muscles requires lighter weights and more repetitions. Building strength requires heavier weights and fewer repetitions. We’ll create a program that’s right for you. Here are some favorite muscle-building workouts that also build strength.

If you want to build lean muscle mass faster, try circuit training.

You’ll work more muscles at one time and build faster by creating a circuit. You can use weights, kettlebells, landmine, or bodyweight exercises. When you do circuits, you do either a specified number of repetitions of each exercise or a specific amount of time for each exercise to create a set. Keep the rest between each set very short. One muscle builder that hits all major muscle groups is one minute of each, body squats, push-ups, chin-ups, flutter kicks, lunges, V-ups, and single-leg hip thrusts.

Add weight to your workout.

Doing any exercise with added weight boosts the difficulty level and increases the muscle you build. Doing squats holding dumbbells in each hand can boost muscle growth. A standing barbell overhead press is excellent for your shoulders, and a barbell bench press will build chest muscles. Most people think of dumbbell curls when they want to build biceps because they work! Use a barbell row for back muscles.

Compound exercises build more muscles in less time.

Squats, lunges, and variations like the sumo squat or walking lunges can build more muscles in less time. Because you’re using more muscle groups, you’re also burning more calories to help burn any fat that can hide them. Many of the best muscle-building exercises mimic daily tasks so they improve functional fitness to help prevent injuries. A military press, parallel bar dip, and bench step-ups with weights are good examples. Deadlifts, squats, bench presses, and shoulder presses are called the big four for strength and muscle building. Always focus on form when doing any exercise, especially ones involving weights.

  • Building muscles also involves a healthy diet. You need adequate protein to build muscle tissue. Eat a snack before and after working out that contains carbs for energy and protein for recovery.
  • Never do muscle-building exercises in the same muscle groups two days in a row if your workout is intense. Always give your muscles 48-72 hours to heal the micro tears the exercises cause.
  • Consider doing battle ropes for building muscle tissue. They work muscles on various planes and at different tensions throughout the exercise. Running stair laps is another muscle-building workout.
  • Get adequate sleep and hydration. Your body repairs tissue when you sleep. The repair is what builds muscle tissue. Lack of hydration can diminish your progress in the gym. Always check with your healthcare professional before starting any fitness program.

For more information, contact us today at Body Sculptors Personal Training

Yoga Benefits You Haven't Heard Before Now

Yoga Benefits You Haven’t Heard Before Now

You might wonder why a gym that uses traditional exercises to help people get into shape would include an article about yoga. It’s because we want you to be your healthiest and know there are other options besides bodyweight exercises or free weights. Yoga is also complementary to our program. It provides relaxation and boosts flexibility. Learning breathing techniques can become part of your gym workout to bring even more benefits. Many yoga moves have been incorporated into traditional calisthenics and bodyweight exercises because they work.

You’ll improve your posture with yoga.

That might not be the most surprising benefit, but it leads to other health benefits you might not consider. Good posture makes you look thinner. It boosts your endurance since your body is more aligned and doesn’t have to fight gravity as much to stay erect. Good posture prevents back, shoulder, head, neck, and joint pain. It also helps boost digestion and aids in breathing.

Yoga can be a brain booster.

Yoga works the body and the brain. It helps boost focus and builds mindfulness that translates to other activities. Learning to calm your mind and focus can help when faced with an overwhelming challenge and help kick in creativity to think outside the box. Learning the poses boosts brain power, too. Just like all physical activities it creates new neural pathways. It can help lower stress, help reduce depression, and relieve anxiety.

Yoga promotes mindfulness that can help you lose weight.

Yoga can help you become more mindful and get in touch with your body. When you eat mindfully, you slow your food consumption by savoring every bite. This way of eating provides more enjoyment from each bite and causes you to eat slower. That gives extra time for your stomach to signal to the brain that it’s full so you eat less. It also can help prevent food cravings that can add extra pounds.

  • As with all types of exercise, yoga can help relieve chronic pain. It can loosen tight muscles that cause pain and build muscles around joints to relieve the pressure. That can reduce pain from arthritis.
  • You might not realize it, but yoga can build strength. Many of the movements build muscle strength. One example is the Phalak asana, which is known as the forearm plank in Western bodyweight exercises.
  • Yoga can boost circulation, help improve digestion, and increase the synovial fluid circulation in the joints. It can improve the detoxification of internal organs by relieving pressure on them.
  • Yoga helps you sleep better at night. Traditional Western exercise programs also help. Yoga takes it one step further by adding breathing techniques that help you relax.

For more information, contact us today at Body Sculptors Personal Training

Foods You Should Be Avoiding For Weight Loss

Foods You Should Be Avoiding For Weight Loss

If your goal is weight loss, you have to cut calories and eat healthier food. That’s why we provide all the information you need to learn how to create healthier meals. Exercise alone isn’t enough. You can’t out-exercise a bad diet. You could jump rope for an hour and still not burn off the calories from a Classic Cinnabon cinnamon roll. Combining a healthy diet with exercise is the best way to take off weight, as it improves your health and boosts your energy.

Some things look healthy, but they aren’t.

Most people know that candy bars are packed with sugar. They often have no redeeming qualities like extra nutrients but are high in calories. A small candy bar covered in chocolate can add 200 to 300 extra calories to your diet. While they satisfy your urge for something sweet, it only lasts a short time and then you need more. Maybe you think eating a granola bar would be a good alternative. You might be right in some cases, but not in most. In most cases, they’re glorified candy bars that masquerade as a healthier option.

Ban fries and chips should be banned from your diet.

French fries, chips, and any fried food should never be part of a healthy diet. They’re high in fat and it’s not the healthy type of fat. There’s a direct link between gaining weight, obesity, and French fries or potato chips. Eating one or two fries or one or two chips won’t hurt too much, but who does that? As far as I know, very few people, if any.

Exclude cookies, cakes, pastry, and food with refined flour from your diet.

You’re probably already aware that these should be cut from your diet. Pastries, cakes, and cookies are loaded with sugar and refined white flour. They don’t provide satiety for long and leave you hungrier within less than an hour of eating them. Foods that contain refined flour include pasta, bread, and bakery goods.

  • Sugary drinks like soft drinks are high in calories and nothing but sugar water with flavoring. You might think fruit juice is a better option, but it’s not. It’s high in sugar and doesn’t contain the fiber that slows the absorption of the sugar. Some even have added sugar.
  • Most frozen treats like ice cream are loaded with sugar and high in calories. If you want an alternative to ice cream, cut a banana into rounds and freeze them. Put the frozen rounds in a blender until it’s a smooth ice cream-like substance that’s healthier.
  • Drink plain black coffee and avoid the added sugar and cream. Steer clear of the fancy Frappuccinos that are more like coffee-flavored milkshakes. The best thing to drink is water. It’s refreshing and keeps you hydrated.
  • Leave processed meat and fast food off your list of potential dinners. Processed meats contain high amounts of sodium and chemicals. Fast foods, whether pizza or burgers, often are high in calories and low in nutrition.

For more information, contact us today at Body Sculptors Personal Training

Can I Burn More Calories Without Exercising?

Can I Burn More Calories Without Exercising?

Some people in Louisville, KY, would prefer not to exercise or don’t for other reasons. They often look for ways to burn more calories without exercising. You may wonder if that’s possible and the answer is a resounding yes. It doesn’t take a miracle drug or some complicated equipment. Most people can make the changes immediately. Is it as good as adding an exercise program to your schedule? The answer is a resounding, “No.” Exercise does more for you than burn calories. It helps boost your overall health and builds endurance, flexibility, and strength.

You’ll burn calories even while you sleep.

Your body constantly works and requires energy even when you sit still. The number of calories you require is called your basal metabolic rate. It accounts for calories necessary for regulating your body temperature, breathing, keeping your heart beating, and all other functions. Just thinking uses 20% of the calories you burn. If you sit up you burn more calories than if you lay down. Moving about burns additional calories even though you might not be exercising.

Boost the calories you burn by moving more.

If you sit at a desk, roll your shoulders, move your legs, tap your toes, or raise your arms. These are non-exercise movements that can burn extra calories. If you remember back in school the kid who used to fidget and wiggle was often thinner than the others in class. Some people believe that fidgeting is a self-regulating activity to burn extra calories from overeating. It increases the number of calories you burn 24/7.

Change your habits to increase activity.

If you park further from the store and walk or take the stairs instead of the elevator, you’ll burn more calories without exercise. If you work at a desk, get up and move. Studies show that you should get up and move for five minutes every hour to maximize the benefits of an exercise program and stay fitter. Stand up and pace about when you’re on the phone. Do a walking meeting or walk to lunch and talk there.

  • Studies show that people who walk faster live longer. It’s also a way to burn extra calories. Maybe there’s a link between those two. Increasing the calories you burn and losing weight can extend your life.
  • You don’t have to start a complete exercise program to get benefits from doing a few exercises throughout the day. If you’re watching TV, do a plank. Get out of your seat and do a few squats or Dr Zachary Bush’s four-minute nitric oxide dump.
  • Give in to your urge to move to the music. How often have you listened to your favorite fast song and wanted to move your body to the music? Go ahead and do it. You’ll burn more calories.
  • Get up and do a chore. Get up and do five-minute chores once an hour. Fold laundry or take out the trash before it’s overflowing. Create a plan to clean out your closet using a few minutes each day.

For more information, contact us today at Body Sculptors Personal Training

Let Your New Fitness Journey Begin

Let Your New Fitness Journey Begin

How do you begin a fitness journey? By putting one foot in front of the other and getting started. Some people hate to plan and go forward, eventually stopping either for good or to reevaluate. Others spend all their time planning but never follow through. Either way, you won’t make the advancements of someone who sets goals and immediately sets them in progress. Getting fit starts with an idea. To make it work, it takes consistent effort.

Keep your reason for your goal in front of you at all times.

Whether it’s working out regularly or eating healthier, keep your goal out in front. That means making sticky notes to put on the refrigerator and cupboards, or a reminder on your phone to exercise. If you haven’t clearly defined your goal, created a way to measure it, and reach it, knowing your reason for your goal is imperative. If you want to lower your blood pressure with exercise, your measurement is your blood pressure, just as your weight is for weight loss.

Start by doing what you can.

If you can’t do an entire workout, do what you can. One man was so severely obese that doctors told him he would die if he didn’t lose weight. He couldn’t run a block but could walk to the corner. Eventually, he could walk several blocks and then run. He lost the excess weight and is now running marathons. He did what he could. To start eating healthier, focus on giving up food with added sugar first. Once you accomplish that for an extended period, it will be easier to eat healthier. You’ll be amazed at how sweet natural fruit tastes.

Hold yourself accountable and don’t quit if you fall off the wagon.

Track your progress and hold yourself accountable for sticking with your goals. Permit yourself a few slip-ups or intentional breeches, like having a small amount of your favorite pie that your aunt makes for family gatherings. If you fall off track, all is not lost. Don’t compound the problem by eating everything in sight or giving up exercise entirely. Start fresh the next day.

  • Getting fit is all about consistency. Put your workout in your schedule as an appointment and treat it like any other appointment. Meal plan to ensure you have healthy meals ready to eat.
  • Find ways to move more. Besides a regular workout, finding ways to move more is imperative. Take the stairs instead of the elevator or escalator. Park further from the store and walk.
  • Keep score. Track your progress every day. Write down your workout and how difficult or easy it was. When it’s too easy, change your workout to become more challenging.
  • Always warm up or cool down when you exercise. Stay hydrated and sip on water throughout exercise. Get adequate sleep to ensure your journey is easier. Lack of sleep increases the hunger hormone.

For more information, contact us today at Body Sculptors Personal Training

Want To Be Faster? Here's How You Can Do It.

Want To Be Faster? Here’s How You Can Do It.

Learning to run faster starts with the proper form. Like any exercise, your form counts. It affects muscle pulls and your speed. It makes every movement more efficient. That leads to more endurance and speed. Allow your arms to swing freely as you keep your shoulders relaxed. Your stride, the strike position of your feet, your cadence, and a wealth of other form tips, from the placement of the feet to how to keep your head held correctly, all play a vital role in form. Many changes you make to your running form also improve your overall posture.

Practice, practice, practice.

Run more often. You won’t run your best if you only run once a week. Use running as a substitute for one or two gym days, spending three days at the gym and three days running. If you can’t run outside, run on the treadmill in the gym instead. Counting your strides by identifying how many steps you take in a minute can also help. It’s called stride turnover. Stride length also plays a role in your speed. While some people focus on improving those factors, many experts believe that your body will find the most efficient combination the more you run.

Breathing techniques can increase endurance.

Breathing in through the nostrils and out through the mouth is the first breathing technique to learn. Don’t try to learn it as you run. Start before you take to the asphalt. Add belly breathing for deeper breaths. Make breaths deeper and blow all the breath out as deeply as possible. Combining those two will help you maintain speed longer.

Take a tempo run once a week.

Tempo runs can increase your anaerobic threshold—how long it takes and how much exertion before the body switches from aerobic to anaerobic metabolism. You can do it by running at a comfortable, easier pace for 10 minutes and switching to 20 minutes at a pace sustainable for 6 miles. Finish the last ten minutes at a cool-down rate. Your pace should be fast enough that you can’t carry on a conversation, but slow enough your body isn’t begging for air.

  • Make your run a modified HIIT—high intensity interval training—workout. Warm up first, then do a lap at a 5 K pace. Do the next lap at a recovery or jogging pace. Alternate speeds between fast and recovery up to six times.
  • Run on hilly terrain. It can be on asphalt or concrete as long as there is an incline. Run up the hills as fast as possible. Jog down the other side. Do as many hills as you can with maximum benefits from 10 hills.
  • Get good shoes. While your other clothing should be layered and appropriate for the weather, it doesn’t have to be fancy. Your shoes are a different matter. Use the correct shoes for the terrain you run, whether it’s a treadmill, gravel, or woodsy terrain.
  • While you won’t run faster, you will run safer by letting people know where you run. Carry a phone with you and allow a friend or family member to track you. If running at night, wear reflective clothing.

For more information, contact us today at Body Sculptors Personal Training

Are You Ready To Chisel?

Are You Ready To Chisel?

If you want to get chiseled in Louisville, KY, come to Body Sculptors/ Our personal trainers will help you do it. Getting chiseled takes more than building strong, impressive muscles. It also takes a healthy diet and often weight loss. After all, no matter how chiseled you are, if those muscles are covered with a layer of body fat, nobody will be able to see all your hard work. You have to ensure you eat enough to provide the nutrients for muscle building but still have a deficiency so you can burn fat.

Focus on your diet first.

Nutrition plays a big role in all fitness goals. You can’t out-exercise a bad diet. Don’t expect to have that chiseled beach-ready body if you’re sucking down fries and burgers. Building muscle tissue requires high-quality protein and adequate calories from other healthy foods. You have to eat enough so you aren’t burning muscle tissue and building it instead, but also cut back enough to burn body fat so you can see your new muscles. When you build muscle, the muscle gets micro tears. Those need the energy to heal to get the results you want.

It takes the right type of exercise.

If you want a chiseled look, don’t overdo the cardio. To be fit, you need all types of exercise: strength, endurance, flexibility, and balance, but cut back slightly on cardio and increase strength-building workouts. Cardio burns calories from both muscle and fat. Strength-building builds muscle tissue as it burns fat. If your diet is calorie-deficit, it reduces the glycogen available for muscle building. Don’t train more than three times a week. It helps you maintain your muscles while you shed pounds. Once the weight is off, you can focus on building them.

Core training is essential for that V-chiseled look.

Working your core muscles builds back and abdominal strength. That helps you achieve those washboard abs and the V appearance. You need to also work on upper body strength, focusing on definition and bulk. Everyone is unique, so our trainers will provide the right program for you. Some exercises used include traditional ones like planks, bridges, push-ups, and lunges.

  • You can merge your strength-building with your cardio workout by making it a HIIT workout. You don’t have to workout as long for the same results and you get both cardio and strength-building.
  • Expect your trainer to continually modify your continuously. You’ll work your muscles on all planes and not give your muscles a chance to get efficient and burn fewer calories.
  • Have all macronutrients in your diet, including healthy fat. Healthy fat provides energy and is necessary to create hormones and keep blood glucose in check. It also allows the body to absorb certain nutrients.
  • Talk to a trainer and explain your goal. You’ll have a dietary regimen and workout program designed specifically to meet it based on your present fitness level and special needs.

For more information, contact us today at Body Sculptors Personal Training

How To Perform A Perfect Squat

How To Perform A Perfect Squat

At Body Sculptors in Louisville, KY, we focus on all types of exercise. Every exercise provides more benefits and prevents injury when you do it right. That includes bodyweight exercises like squats. Doing a perfect squat can improve functional fitness. It also burns tons of calories. Since it works large muscles, it also boosts the creation of nitric oxide which helps lower blood pressure by causing blood vessels to get wider. The exercise may be basic, but it’s hard to do if you don’t have lower body strength.

The correct starting position is vital to your form.

If your starting position isn’t correct, you won’t do the squats properly. Hold your trunk straight, keeping your head up. Relax your shoulders and hold them back with your lower back having a slight curve. If you bend your head forward or backward, it minimizes the benefits. Your spine should be in a neutral position throughout the entire squat. Bend only at the hip, ensuring your back remains in position.

The placement of your feet also plays a role.

Your feet should be at hip-width with your toes slightly pointed outward for the basic squat. Once you master the basics, you can start doing variations that affect other muscle groups, like the plie squat. Keep your core tight as you lower your body. Pull in your stomach to increase stability and protect the spine. Keep your weight on your heels when lowering your hips, and your knees line up with your big toe. Hinge at the hips and lower your body until your thighs are parallel to the floor. Push back up using your heels until you’re back at the starting position.

People often make these common mistakes that can sacrifice benefits.

The most common mistake is bending your back forward or overarching it too far back. The object is to maintain the natural curve in the lower back if you’re doing the squat correctly. If the core muscles are weak, people often compensate by overarching or leaning too far forward, trying to increase the strength it takes to do the squat. That often leads to back strain. Keeping the weight on the heels is also a common mistake. If you put the weight on the balls of the feet, it also increases back stress.

  • Weak thigh muscles can cause the knees to move inward. It causes stress on the ligaments and joints. While the proper form has the thighs parallel to the floor, if you can’t go that far down, go as far as you can without feeling discomfort and work toward parallel.
  • Once you have the basic form mastered, you can add weights or try other forms of the squat, such as the one-legged squat.
  • Don’t use weight belts or weights until you have the perfect form. It can cause injury by putting too much stress on your muscles and joints.
  • A squat is a compound exercise that burns lots of calories. It builds muscles to do necessary movements required for everyday living, is vital for seniors, and is good for people of all ages.

For more information, contact us today at Body Sculptors Personal Training

Easy Meals You Can Eat Anytime Of The Day

Easy Meals You Can Eat Anytime Of The Day

Getting fit isn’t always easy. There are so many foods that are quick, but not healthy. Think Pop-Tarts and pizza rolls, for instance. You don’t have to succumb to the fast food industry or eat junk food when there are easy meals you can make in minutes that are good for all meals. They are nutritious and lower in calories, so you’ll boost your overall health and lose weight. Some require oven time, but you can bake them ahead, then heat and serve. You can also use our Fit Meal Formula plan and have ready-to-heat and serve meals prepared.

Spaghetti squash with diced tomato sauce.

If you can use a can opener and an oven, you can make this simple dish that also is good reheated. Start by cutting spaghetti squash in half and scoop out the seeds. Put it cut side down in a pan with a little water and a dome of aluminum foil. Bake at 400 degrees for 40 minutes. Instead of spaghetti sauce, use two cans of petite diced tomatoes, one plain and one with green chilies added or labeled chili-ready. Just heat the tomatoes, letting them simmer on low, stirring occasionally while the spaghetti squash cooks. Serve it as you would regular spaghetti, topped with Parmesan cheese. Add mixed vegetable salad on the side.

A tortilla roll-up makes a quick meal.

If you have chopped tomatoes, lettuce, and onions ready in small bags in the refrigerator this dish only takes minutes. Heat a can of refried beans if it’s for lunch or dinner, or scramble eggs for breakfast. Spread the beans or eggs on the soft tortilla shell and top with cheese, lettuce, onions, and tomatoes. Roll it up like a burrito for a quick meal.

  • Avocado toast is a great addition to any meal. Just mash avocado with a bit of lemon or lime juice and spread on toast. Put baby greens on top and serve it with fruit or an egg.
  • Make a Buddha bowl from leftovers. You can use almost anything to make it. Start with baby greens, a salad, or any vegetable. Add any grain, from rice to quinoa, and a protein source. Top it with your favorite dressing.
  • Make a whole grain pita pocket stuffed with spinach, tomatoes, feta cheese, and a scrambled egg. If you use frozen spinach, drain it well and heat it, then scramble in the eggs. Spread pesto inside the pocket, then add the other ingredients.
  • Don’t forget smoothies as a meal. You can toss in leftover vegetables and fruit and put them in the blender. Add protein powder and blend. It’s a complete meal.

For more information, contact us today at Body Sculptors Personal Training