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12

Being able to touch the toes depends mainly on two things: hamstring flexibility body proportions (relative length of legs, torso, and arms) It is not possible to change body proportions, so, to reach the toes, someone with longer legs and shorter torso/arms will need to have more flexibility in the hamstrings. It is possible for anyone to reach that ...


10

The answer is a phenomena called Tetanic contraction: A tetanic contraction (also called tetanized state or tetanus) occurs when a motor unit has been maximally stimulated by its motor neuron. This occurs when a muscle's motor unit is stimulated by multiple impulses at a sufficiently high frequency. Each stimulus causes a twitch. If stimuli are delivered ...


9

Don't Confuse Size with Genetics and Training My former coach won the genetic lottery as someone who can just naturally get beastly strong. An example of that genetic pool, he took his mother to the weight room and she squatted over 300 lbs on her first day with no prior training. I'm pretty sure she was sore after that. There are several power lifters ...


8

Stop Making Excuses Don't tell me that fat doesn't make people stronger because it does. Of course many fat people are strong. Of course people get stronger faster if they aren't trying to stay under a certain weight while training. But there's that key phrase: 'while training'. The examples you cite fight sumo and lift weights. There's no magic here: ...


8

Do slow negatives, start at the top and lower yourself slowly, this is the way most people get strong enough to do their first, clean pull/chin-ups. If you have a rubber band to attach to the bar, that can work too.,


7

I'd like to break down a few things first which I think might help to explain what I think is going on with your situation. First off, great work on starting with chinups / pullups. They are a terrific compound exercise that works basically everything from your mid back to your fingers. Bicep curls on the other hand are maybe not the most absurd exercise, ...


7

When I was coached for the deadlift, I was advised that the first inch is the most important, followed by the distance up to the knee line. Past that you're generally in the clear. That's anecdotal, but it's been true for me and most people I've talked to. Answering your question showed me that at (or around) that point, the quads become less dominant and ...


7

Strength training builds muscle. In other words, the forcible contraction of your muscles against resistance is what stimulates them to get stronger or more firm. While stretching has a role, it's not to build or tone muscle. NOTE: the amount of body fat you have can accentuate or hide muscularity, so a certain amount of "toning" is done in the kitchen. ...


7

There's a very common misconception here. Many people think that certain types of exercise will give you one body shape or the other. The reasoning is (more or less explicitly), that since power lifters are bulky, working out like a power lifter will make you bulky, and since dancers are fit and lean, "working out" like a dancer will make you fit and lean. ...


6

I'm going to grade my recommendations by how deep your caloric cut is, because that affects what you can safely do. In general you will find that the larger the muscle group involved, the more calories expended in doing the exercise. I am assuming the OP is in generally good health and only has to worry about a few extra pounds. Also, my body fat ...


5

Nothing inherently wrong in the math, just in the model you are using. As it turns out, Greg Nuckols just published an article on Muscle Math, which sheds some light on why it is simply not feasible in practice to go from 300x3 to 840 lbs in 1 year (52 weeks). Some of the major take-aways are: Recovery activities have a power law distribution (i.e. the ...


5

If you haven't gotten a squat rack, back squats will be hard. Front squats are more doable, but still require cleaning the weight to your shoulders and will use less weight. However, in this case lower weight front squats will be much better for you than smith machine squats. Especially at this early stage. Front squats force you to have a more upright ...


5

Some men train poorly, and therefore remain weak. Some women train extremely hard, and thereby achieve great strength. Reality need not break for a 120-pound person with less testosterone but more consistent, better quality, more focused training to out-deadlift a 180-pound person with much more testosterone but less consistent, worse quality, more general ...


5

Testosterone is a steroid hormone. A steroid simply being present does not necessarily mean that a person is making good use of it. Men are obviously on average going to out perform women in feats of strength, and having more natural steroid production helps that, but you are making a mistake in excluding all other contributing factors. Instead of ...


5

All exercises have an element of both cardio and strength. What differentiates them is how much resistance is used (or can be used) and how much of it you do. A one-rep-maximum bench press is extremely 'strengthy' even though you'll probably break a sweat in the few seconds it takes to execute. Walking, despite being one of the easiest forms of exercise, is ...


5

Frequency Can be used to describe how often a particular movement is performed. If Lifter A squats once per week and Lifter B squats twice per week, then Lifter B squats more frequently than Lifter A. Intensity Used to compare sub-maximal efforts to a person's max effort for a particular exercise. In terms of lifting this tends to be given as a percent of ...


4

As far as I know, the fastest movements and possibly the biggest acceleration are due to eye saccades, that is rapid movements of the eye as it scans the environment. Those are involuntary and have to do with perception. Wikipedia quotes the speed at 900 degrees/second (2.5 revolutions, for comparison with ADAM). As for acceleration, "Unsupervised ...


4

Is my friend, who lifts 3 times more weight than I do, stronger? He's stronger than you at certain things. There is no universal single benchmark for strength. Numerous things can be used: squats, snatches, atlas stones, deadlifts, overhead press, pulling a car up a hill, etc. Your body adapts to what you do it. Your friend doesn't concentrate on ...


4

Cortical excitation and disinhibition in the face of danger are what enables supranormal strength. One effect is tetanic contraction due to an increased central drive (under the effects adrenaline and noradrenaline among others). That is, the neurons of the primary motor cortex fire in rapid succession Another one is inhibition of the Golgi tendon organs ...


4

Coming up with a single function for muscle tissue repair with respect to time is literally impossible. Each individual is far too different for any one function to represent us all. It's the whole "one size does NOT fit all" problem that holds for pretty much any physiological issue. That said, there is a study that suggests that ingesting protein just ...


4

The point of barbell squats is to exercise your body through all the form that the Smith machine takes away from you. Yes, you will go back to 20kg at first. Yes, you need to stay there, not until your quads are ready for more, but until the rest of your body, including your core for stability, arms, hands, and overall sense of balance, are ready to work ...


4

Keep lifting normally! The worst thing you could do, is try to work the smaller buttcheek more than the other, because this will end up creating a whole new imbalance, rather than correcting your current one. The best thing you could do, is work out like normal. Squats and lunges should be an integral part of your routine since you want to enhance the butt ...


3

Your math is fine. The problem is you're just plotting your current progress. From Aimee Avaya Everett: New people come on the scene, their lifts continuously go up week after week, and they are the fucking bomb! Their confidence is through the roof! Do we have the next World Champ? [They think,] 'At the rate I am PRing in my snatch and clean & jerk, ...


3

It's possible, but I wouldn't call it "likely" in the sense that "this is the most probably reason". The most likely reason is simply lack of flexibility. If one, over a longer period of time, works on their flexibility, most people (barring certain "disabilities") will be able to reach their toes, or even palm the floor.


3

YES, both muscle size and strength need to be maintained. However, you need to provide much less stimulus to maintain said size/strength gains than you needed to grow them initially. E.g. going from a 5x5 protocol to a 3x10 or vice-versa shouldn't see any kind of strength or size loss, so long as you're keeping the same intensity and eating properly. That ...


3

I boxed for four years and came out of one of the best gyms in the midwest. It was no frills and no excuses type of place in one of the worst areas of the US. But they were popping out guys for the Olympic team like candy. We also had a trainer that is recognized internationally. I will let his methods answer your question since you are more or less ...


3

Extensive bodyweight exercises and repetition of their art for hours at a time is basically the answer. As noted by Dave above, Christopher Somner's writings are generally considered to be the fundamental word on it. His website can be found here. It's prohibitively expensive to get an actual copy of his seminal work, Building the Gymnastic Body, although ...


3

Quite frankly, your best bet is to consult a physical therapist so as to avoid injury. Outside of that, one physical therapy site recommends the following: Avoid overstretching Avoid positions or activities involving extreme ranges of motion in the hips Strengthen muscles surrounding the hips, pelvis, spine, and knees (best to be advised by a physical ...


3

Performing a proper two-hand kettlebell swing is a whole-body workout as opposed to isolating single muscles. However, the main muscles that go into swinging a bell are glutes, hamstrings, lower back + abs (core). What you should aim for in a swing is to send your hips back (similar to deadlift form) with the bell, and then drive your hips forward to get ...


2

Adding 5% weight (rounding-up to the nearest 5 kilos) every 8 weeks of training to any given lift for any given rep-range is a reasonable goal. 10% would be aggressive, but do-able. These numbers assume you're past the novice/untrained stage of gains. A couple other bits of unsolicited advice: 1.) Don't forget that weighted pull-ups is a good way to ...



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