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Live Life, Ride a Bike: Become a Pro Cyclist with 3 Easy Tips

cycleroadWith the weather now becoming incredibly warm, many of you may be starting to think about getting out and going cycling a little more often.

Whether you choose to take your bike to the mountains and escape the busy life that goes on in the city or you’re just looking to go out riding after a hard day at work or over the weekend when you’re ready to relax and enjoy the outdoors, keeping some factors in mind is important.
Not only are there things you can do in the gym to help you with your cycling efforts, but understanding proper nutrition and supplementation will also help you make the most of your time spent out on your bike.

Here are some things to keep in mind as you head out.

In The Gym

Focus On Quad And Hamstring Training:

When you’re out on your bike, the two main muscles that will power you through the ride are your quads and hamstrings. It will be important to have a careful balance between training the two muscles. You don’t want to start experiencing a muscle imbalance.

When that happens, you set yourself up for injury, especially in the lower back area if the weaker muscle becomes tight. Good exercises to include for these muscles include squats, deadlifts, leg curls, lunges, step-ups and split squats.

Don’t Neglect Your Upper Body:

One problem many cyclists have is they focus so much of their energy on their lower body training thinking this is what will be needed for cycling and end up neglecting their upper body entirely.
The upper body is actually used to a large extent during cycling because it partially supports your body weight as you continue to cycle. Over longer rides, lasting one to two hours in duration, don’t be surprised if you find your upper body feels sore.

Proper Nutrition

Next, you also need to look into proper nutrition to make sure you have the fuel to get you through your workouts. It’s important that you’re eating well not only before you go out to cycle but also after you’re finished.

Carbohydrates Around Training:

Right before your training you want to take in a good solid source of carbohydrates that will release somewhat slowly in your body so you’ll have a steady stream of fuel for the longer period of time that you’ll be out there. Good options include oats, pasta, brown rice or a big bowl of fruit and yogurt.
If you’re going to be out for longer than an hour, then it’s also a smart idea to take some fast-digesting carbohydrates along with you.

Maintaining Adequate Hydration:

In addition to providing carbohydrates to fuel your ride, you also need to make sure you’re staying well hydrated. While you may not feel as though you sweat as much on a leisure ride as you would if you were out for a hard run, that does not mean you shouldn’t take in liquid.
Water is best for rides that last an hour or less, but for rides that are longer again that carbohydrate beverage will be a good option. These will also help to supply your body with the electrolytes it needs to maintain good muscular contraction rates.


Finally we move on to supplementation. When used properly there are a number of supplements that can make your cycling trips more effective and enjoyable.

Protein Powder:

The first supplement to consider is protein powder. This is a good option to take for longer rides to give your muscles some amino acids to feed on while you’re out there burning up fuel. Failure to provide these amino acids could result in lean muscle mass loss, so it’s important not to overlook.



If you’re doing mountain cycling or are doing any type of races, you may also want to think about adding creatine to your supplement protocol. While creatine has traditionally been used for weight lifting workouts, if your rides are intense enough and involve short bursts of intense activity, creatine will be beneficial to you as well.

Happy Cycling – Get out There and Ride…

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Pan Seared Sesame Crusted Tuna

This meal is a great idea for a lovely dinner. Packed with protein and essential nutrients it is a must for any one. Quick and easy pan seared sesame crusted tuna steaks.

What’s better than a naturally low in fat,  great source of lean protein and high in Omega 3’s dinner?
How about one of our quick dinner ideas that it only takes 10-15 minutes to cook . . .

Pan Seared Sesame Crusted Tuna – Fast & Easy!

Be sure to choose a nice cut tuna steak for this quick and easy recipe.

Select nice firm raw tuna steaks.

  • Place Tuna Steaks in a deep dish, bowl or casserole.
  • Pour Less Sodium Kikkoman Soy Sauce over the steaks – Coat but do not saturate or soak!
  • Less sit while you prepare side dishes – Turn over and make sure top is wet with soy sauce as well.

While Tuna is sitting in a light puddle of soy sauce – prepare your vegetables.

  • Choose a nice bunch of broccolini – which is similar to broccoli but smaller florets and slender long stems.
    Broccolini is quick and is much more tender than typical broccoli.

Steam the broccolini with a small amount of water and a little olive oil or avocado oil – DO NOT COVER – let steam and add small amounts of water if needed to not burn the pan or broccolini.

  • Smear Tuna Steaks with Sesame Seeds on both sides.
  • Cook on Medium heat for about 10 minutes – flipping sides.
  • Pan Sear enough so that center is still mildly raw or cook longer if desired.

Perfect pan searing should have both sides cooked with middle somewhat small raw center. Depending on the thickness of the steaks, cooking about 5-8 minutes on each side should be sufficient, again all depends on thickness of your tuna steaks.

Toss broccolini – do not let get soggy or too soft.

When making this quick and easy pan seared sesame crusted tuna dish make sure to not over sauté the broccolini. It usually cooks fast on a high heat. Its tasty and delicious when it has a nice crisp bite to it.

Serve your quick and protein jacked tuna steaks with the broccolini – drizzled with a tiny amount of olive oil and salt – and along with a hearty brown and black rice and a touch of wasabi!

Done! Now chow down on this healthy protein enriched and packed with Omega 3’s – Simply and Delish – almost gourmet!

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Why Getting Toned is a Myth and How You Can Transform Your Body


Fitness is a multi-billion dollar industry that changes lives everyday but there is still one myth that plagues consumers and is pushed over and over again.

Getting toned is a myth. By building muscle you can shred unwanted fat.


Why Getting Toned is the Biggest Myth in the Fitness Industry

If you or anyone you know is jacked and in super awesome shape I guarantee it took a ton of hard work and dedication to reach that level. So much work that the small percentage of people that have reached these elite levels of fitness is rather limited.

Bodybuilding is a very demanding sport and comes with great effort. The average person is not going to put in the amount of effort necessary to learning what works for them. Instead they would rather look for the next gimmick, diet or fad and be told what to do. The fitness industry sees this and continues to capitalize on selling you the idea that getting in shape can be easy.

We have all seen the commercials talking about “toning up” and “transforming your body”.  These products continue to fly off the shelf and land in the homes of hopeless consumers. Selling the idea that getting ripped and shredded is way out of your reach and that if you buy these amazing products you can just tone up your body. Well I have news for you, it isn’t so!

Transform your body today and live the life you dream of.

What are you going to tone? Your Fat?!?!?

If you want the most awesome body you ever dreamed of then you have to work for it. And you have to build some muscle to burn some fat. You have to figure out what is going to get you there. You have to experiment, make constant changes, build a strategy and keep working at it. Thats what it takes.

If the industry decided to shift the way they present their ideas and products to consumers then the industry can benefit solely. But if consumers don’t demand better products by searching alternative answers then the industry wont change. Until now.

How You Can Transform Your Body Starting Today

You can dismiss these magical myths of confusion and put the bologna behind you. You can transform your body and create the physique you desire. All it takes is some hard work and a little bit of know how.

By looking into the past we can find clues and hints as to how success was achieved in various areas of life. For those that want to learn about business they research successful businesses and those that are responsible for creating them. If you want to learn how to be a race car driver then you look at race car drivers of the past and figure out techniques on how to win! So why not do it with bodybuilding? Learning from the past greats can put you on the path to physical fitness.

Bodybuilding dates way, way back all the way to ancient Greece. In the early 1900’s and so on there were many great men that helped to pioneer the sport. And bring acceptance in today’s society, Eugene Sandow, Reg Park, Steve Reeves, Bill Pearl, and Dave Draper to name a few. All of these men had amazing physiques. All of these men knew how to work for their physiques.

By studying the past we can make decisions on how to shape the future. Transform your body by learning what to do. It can be as simple as throwing out the bullshit you have been force fed and trying something new.

Implement These Tips and Tricks in Your Training and Watch Your Body Transform

By making a small change in how you do things you can begin to make larger improvements overall. It takes many swings of an axe to chop down a big tree but eventually it will fall. By implementing these five tips you can start to transform your training and create a program that works for you.

The deadlift is a great compound exercise for transforming your body.

Tips and Tricks to Transform Your Body

  • Learn the compound movements and focus on making them the dominant exercises in your workout routines.
    • Squats, deadlifts, bench presses, overhead presses, and so forth. Multi-joint compound movements utilize more muscle groups at once. Therefore being more efficient for building muscle and burning fat.
  • Eat more food. Even if you think your eating enough your probably not.
    • Learning what and how much to take in is key. Your body needs fuel in order for it to perform. There more active you are the more your going to need and want carbs to give you the energy you need.
  • Get enough rest and keep your stress levels low.
    • All the compound lifts are going to be a toll on the body. Make sure you get plenty of rest and keep your stress levels low so your body can be as efficient as possible at doing its job.
  • Grasp the concept of quality over quantity.
    • Proper form is key. If you do five reps and all five of them are in poor form you are definitely missing out on the benefits. Proper form and contraction of the muscles are essential.
  • Make progressive changes to your routines.
    • Progressive resistance is a concept often neglected. But it is probably the biggest tip that can change training protocols dramatically. Either add a little bit of weight here or there. Or make changes in your reps and sets. Just make small incremental changes over time and reap the rewards.

Outside all of that make training fun. Enjoy what your doing and share that enjoyment with others. It should not be a chore.

To learn more tips and tricks sign up for our monthly e-newsletter where we talk about training, keep you motivated and let you know whats going on with Barbell Academy.

We would love to get to know you better and how this article has benefited your training. Share you comments below in and lets get the conversation going.


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Seated Barbell Shoulder Press

Learn how to train your shoulders like classic bodybuilders.

Begin this exercise by selecting either the a barbell or a smith machine. Once you have chosen your desired tool for the task. Adjust the bench to where it is comfortable for you. When doing this exercise different seating positions can create different effects. The focus of this particular form will be on the upper chest and shoulder area, or shoulder girdle.

Straight flexing, Evan Centopani has boulders for shoulders.

Now that your seat is set grasp the barbell about shoulder width apart.

Take a deep breath and make sure your body is in position.

Remove the barbell from the pins and begin to slowly lower it to your clavicle. Keeping your elbows locked and acting as a guide.

Be sure to focus on the areas that your are trying to build.

If you like to hit the top part of the chest more try the elbows forward and at about a thirty-five degree angle. Wider positions will allow for a more deltoid dominate movement.

Once the barbell has reached your clavicle, contract your muscles and return the bar to the starting position.

Take a deep breath and repeat.

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Bodybuilder Evan Centopani—The Ox


Evan Centopani is a modern day bodybuilder. Sometimes called “The Ox” and I can see why. He is a beast of a man. Standing it at about 5’ 11” and anywhere between 260 – 300 pounds this dude is surely a beast.

His physique looks to really be shaping up this year. Which leads me to believe that there are some major victories in the pipeline for Evan. Check him out below. And be sure to check out his guest blogs on Muscular Development.

Professional bodybuilder Evan Centopani sitting on bench resting between sets.


Don’t forget to train your back!


Tough as that chain. Evan Centopani taking a quick camera break between grueling sets.


Evan Centopani definitely includes dips in his workouts.


Shredded abs.


Straight flexing, Evan Centopani a true powerhouse.


Evan Centopani has some massive quads.
Evan Centopani has some massive quads.


Evan Centopani, The Ox.


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The Top Five Tricks And Tips For Building Strength

Boost your training with these five top tips and tricks.

Do you want to take your training to the next level? All it takes is a little know how and experimentation. Keep reading for some important tips that can help propel you ahead of the pack. And turn you into the guy that everyone watches in the gym.

The Top Five Tricks and Tips For Building Strength

Improve Your Squat with Proper Shoe Choice

Squatting in tennis shoes is not recommended. Yes you see people do it all the time. Pay attention to their feet and tell me if you notice anything going on. Ankle roll? Foot rock? For your safety and performance it is best to get a pair of weightlifting shoes or any flat bottomed shoe like Converse Chuck Taylor. A flat bottomed shoe will provide you with stability and support. Allowing you to drive out of the hole.

If You Reach a Squatting Plateau try Box Squats

Improve your squats by practicing the box squat.

If you experience difficulty squatting on your own first learn how to get out of the squat by practicing box squats. A full post on regarding the box squat should get you going. Box squats will help you learn how to keep your body tight and what it feels like to “sit” with the weight on your back.

Use Your Supporting Muscles During Compound Presses

Keeping your shoulder blades back and pinched together stabilizes you during the bench press and the overhead press. A good way to visualize this action is to pretend you are going to pull the bar apart. You chest and shoulders need a solid platform to push against when driving that weight up.

Hip Drive for Big Deadlifts

When deadlifting be sure to get your hips back and your buttocks down. At the bottom of the movement drive up first with your hips and your glutes. Pulling the bar off the floor with your back alone is not a good feeling. Be safe and increase your PR’s with proper form.

Increase your deadlift. Focus on hip drive.

Switch Up Your Bench Form for Shoulder Dominant Lifters

If your shoulder dominant in your benching try switching your form. The traditional bodybuilding bench press is know to create massive chests. But massive front delts that cannot do it right. With your arms tighter to your body, a proper arch in your lower back and your feet planted firmly on the floor you will notice the difference in  your bench pressing movements.

Always stay true to form and lift with intensity. Make every rep count.

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Making Your Water Intake Less Boring

When it comes to re-hydrating your bodies, I’m sure if all health implications were taken out of the equation, most of you would opt for a beer, glass of wine or a fizzy soft drink over a big glass of water any day!

Without over generalizing too much, most things that taste good to our pallet, either food or drink related, are not going to be good for us in terms of their health and nutrition benefits. Water is one healthy drink option that isn’t going to set your taste buds tingling, but there’s simply no escaping its critical to your health. With the human body consisting of approximately 60-70% body weight from water it’s easy to see why it’s so vitally important to stay hydrated at all times.

Every system and function in your body relies on sufficient water levels to function efficiently and effectively. Going into a state of dehydration can not only create internal disruptions, but it can also bring about a state of fatigue and mental confusion. At higher levels of dehydration it can become both critical and life threatening.

Water really is that important….

Ways To Make Your Water Intake More Appealing


Infuse Your Water With Herbs – and Even Veggies/ Fruits

Already a trend in California and other health conscious areas, infused water is a big hit.  It offers a blast of freshness to your water and gives it some excitement – and not to mention people like fashioning a nice water bottle with some colorful herbs and fruit to show off.

Infuse your water overnight with some basil…yes basil….sounds strange but just try it.  Be creative and mix and match herbs and fruit to make a unique drink.  The key to extracting all the oils and flavor from an to “smack it” .  Smack the herbs in between your hands – do not tear or shred…then place the herbs in a  glass bottle or pitcher and fill with water and let marinate overnight.

Some best herbs to infuse:  Basil, Oregano, Mint and Sage

Mix with some fruits / veggies with herbs or infuse what you wish: Cucumber slices, Orange Slices, Lemon, Lime, etc.

Cucumbers are a very fresh veggie that make your water taste extra clean.  So experiment away…

Try some Mint and Orange Slices ….Get Refreshed !

Add A Little Juice

Why not add a few drops of your favorite juice to your glass of water to spice things up a little. Find something with natural ingredients and preferably no added sugar which will hopefully satisfy your taste buds for a short while! Cranberry is a sure favorite.

Create Some Frozen Alternatives
With the summer months now upon us, what better way to celebrate than by creating your own ice cubes and/ or ice lollies. Add flavorings such as those described above to create your very own flavorsome iced masterpieces!

Don’t forget that water can also be obtained from the foods you consume. Previous research has demonstrated that up to 25% of your water requirements are met through food consumption alone. Vegetables and fruits tend to contain the highest percentages of water, so why not opt for a salad on a regular basis or ensure these foods feature regularly in your diet. Alternative foods such as soups and broths also contain high water levels and with the British summer being as unpredictable as ever, you might just need a warm meal in the near future!

Don’t Forget – Caffeine Intake Requires More Hydration

Limit the caffeine intake as well…or note that for every glass of coffee – you will need at least two glasses of water to supplement the dehydration from your coffee and other beverages.

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