Life of a Gym Rat Reavealed
Fitness as a lifestyle
Build Muscle Fast with the Pyramid Workout (Part 1/3: Safety)
If you’re someone looking to build muscle fast and increase muscle mass in the quickest time frame possible, you’re in the right place! Since I have very good experience with this subject, I thought it would be a good idea to pass this information onto others interested on the topic.
To say a little about myself, I played football in high school all four years. I was among the runts of the litter my freshman year. I was left in despair; little did I know however of the great potential that would lie within. Because I had never played football before this point, I hadn’t built up anything before entry of high school. Fortunately, when you’re at the bottom of the barrel, you can only go up! I began at a mere 165 lbs. Over the next couple of years I noticed I was becoming less wimpy. In fact, I had found that I went from wimp to Chimp! Cause Chimpanzees are strong… No? Anyway, at the peak of my performance I was 16 years old, 5’10”, 215 pounds, yielded 12% body fat, and boasted a maximum bench press repetition of 330 lbs.
Back to the topic, building up bulky muscle will not come easily. I will be completely transparent here and will not sugar coat anything. It will truly take real dedication over the course of at least a few months. This is a physical change to your body that certainly will not happen over the course of 2-3 weeks even if you push your hardest. With that being said, let’s get to it.
As with anything in life, I must recommend trying to be as safe as possible. There is a real danger associated with weight lifting that can allow injuries to happen which are easily prevented. Fortunately, we can keep ourselves very safe with a few small precautions.
First of all, whenever using free weights for lifting (recommended), always be sure to have a spotter nearby when doing your lifts 100% of the time. A spotter is someone who is there to assist with your lifts. They have a few different purposes. First of which, the spotter needs to be standing over you ready to assist every second of your lift. Their hands hovering just under the bar in case you drop it unexpectedly with their feet planted firmly on the ground.
Before starting your lift, always run through these quick checks to ensure safety.
- Make sure the path the bar will be taking is free and clear of anything that it could collide with during the lift. This will prevent any sudden shift in balance which can lead to loss of control over said bar.
- Be sure that the weight is always even on both sides of the bar and that the barbells (weight plates) are pushed in all the way. Leaving gaps in between the plates can cause an imbalance of weight distribution across the bar as plates further away from the center make the bar heavier on that side.
- Check to ensure that there is one weight clamp, or clip on each side of the bar pressed against the last plate. Also, keep in mind that the clips should not be loose as they could slide off the bar during the lift if this were the case.
- Similarly, as we checked the bar, it is a good idea to check the area you will be laying down on or sitting for stability. An off centered bench may support your weight alone, but could send you tumbling to the ground when the weight of the bar is added upon lifting it.
These next precautions aren’t completely mandatory, but can be helpful. They are mainly for comfort and support.
When working out, obviously our bodies will generate extra heat causing us to sweat. This means your hands will be more slippery than usual. I found weightlifting gloves to be useful because they provided me with a more stable grip on the bars. A basic pair of Harbinger weight lifting gloves should suffice and will basically last forever. If you don’t like wearing gloves, there is also weightlifting chalk you can pat your hands with as well.
If you’re beginning to lift heavy weights for the first time or have weak wrists/joints, it is a good idea to get a pair of wrist wraps to provide extra support. This is because the way our joints work, if we do not have strong muscles to control the joint movement to start out, I have found that our joints like to buckle back and forth when holding heavy weight. The wraps will keep them steady and provide extra support.
After following these short easy steps, getting injured is incredibly unlikely. Now we can start to build muscle fast and have some fun!