One of the ways to keep yourself motivated and dedicated is to get yourself a workout partner - preferably someone you are great friends with. This makes going to the gym easier. It's more like going to the movies with mates - only better - you're sculpting your body into the perfect physique. Training with friends is much more enjoyable. From experience, I find I also get better results over periods where I train with friends than periods where I train without friends.
Trust me training with a workout partner makes it much easier to get yourself motivated to go to the gym and makes it much more enjoyable all at the same time!
Keeping a journal
Since about one month after I started bodybuilding I have kept a journal or a diary or whatever you wanna call it. Once again the journal is an important part to your training.
The journal allows you to record your short-term and long-term goals, plan your workouts and nutrition programs and keeps you more organized than ever. My journal looks more like the doctor's notes that sit at the foot of your bed when you're in hospital.
I include in my journal:
- Weight Training for the Day
- Cardio for the Day
- Daily goals
- Weekly goals
- Monthly goals
- Long term goals
- Nutrition for the day
So you see there's a LOT of info to be kept in the journal, all of which will be beneficial in the long run.
Even though you may have to spend between 15 and 30 minutes per day writing the journal it will help you become more organized and therefore most likely a much better and bigger bodybuilder!
The Wonderful Forms of Cardio
Some people love doing cardio, but about 99% of people hate it. It's hard, annoying and you don't get the same enjoyment from it as you do from lifting but believe me in some stages of your bodybuilding career, cardio is much more important than lifting. Mainly when you are cutting up. In this article I'm going to list all the different forms of cardio I have done over the past couple of years and give it a rank, rating out of 10 and explain it in detail.
1. Cycling (9.5 / 10)
Even though I continually get strange looks when people ask me why cycling is my favorite form of cardio, I don't count cycling out. It's fun, works and builds the legs brilliantly and is also a fast form of transport. It is important though NOT to ride on the day that you do your leg training (or the 2 days following it for the matter). Cycling is really hard on your legs. It can sometimes make them feel like they've just done an intense and heavy squat workout. But I recommend cycling to everyone, once or twice a week when you're not leg training.
2. Rowing (9 / 10)
Rowing is such a great sport to do, if it is an option. You will get great gains in size and strength plus it is a competitive sport which is a great distraction from bodybuilding if you need one. Rowing is really fun as well and. if you can do it, then DO IT!
3. Power Walking (8.5 / 10)
I really like power walking early in the morning when there's nice weather. You can take your dog out and just enjoy the scenery of the environment you live in. Good way to clear your mind too. Walking every morning or night is a great idea for cardio because it is an effective method of cardio and it's really easy and relaxing.
4. Running (6.5 / 10)
Yes I know what you're thinking, why would you LIKE running? Well the fact is I don't, but I do like the results I get from it. It's one of the most disliked, if not the most disliked form of cardio but you HAVE to do it if you want to gain results. Because it's a hard, strenuous activity for your body. Running will make you sweat and wipe away that extra fat in no time. For those who don't know how to run - just continuously place one foot in front of the other at a fast pace.
5. Team Sports (6.5 / 10)
I know that most people would place this number one and I would for enjoyment but really things like ice hockey and football will not help you in a short period of time. In the cutting up phase you need about 4 weeks to cut up - not 4 months. Team sports are a good thing to do if you can blend them in over the 6 months of the team sports season with your lifting. Which is hard to do because you really only want 4, maybe 5 days activity per week and if 2 - 3 are taken up with your team sport you only have 1 - 2 for lifting and this will not be helpful for gains in size.
6. Stair Climbing (5.5 / 10)
Although crazy and seemingly pointless, stair climbing is a great form of cardio that will give your legs a great pump and if you hit a plateau and your legs just won't grow I could guarantee you this will give you great results and in the cutting up phase will stop you from losing muscle while acting as a great form of cardio!
You must remember though that cardio and lifting together aren't much, your diet is really the key to everything. Without a good and effective diet you won't get good results from the time you put into cardio.