Training & Nutrition Insider Secrets for a Lean Body HTML version

Training & Nutrition Insider Secrets for a Lean-Body
2.5 The Ultimate Hard-Body Exercise
As you may have already discovered, the squat is at the top of the heap (along
with deadlifts) as one of the most effective overall exercises for stimulating body
composition changes (muscle gain and fat loss). This is because exercises like
squats and deadlifts use more muscle groups under a heavy load than almost any
other weight bearing exercises known to man. Hence, these exercises stimulate
the greatest hormonal responses (growth hormone, testosterone, etc.) of all
exercises. In fact, university research studies have even proven that inclusion of
squats into a training program increases upper body development, in addition to
lower body development, even though upper body specific joint movements are not
performed during the squat. Whether your goal is gaining muscle mass, losing
body fat, building a strong and functional body, or improving athletic performance,
the basic squat and deadlift (and their variations) are the ultimate solution. If you
don’t believe me that squats and deadlifts are THE basis for a lean and powerful
body, then go ahead and join all of the other overweight people pumping away
mindlessly for hours on boring cardio equipment. You won’t find long boring cardio
in any of my programs!
Squats can be done simply with your bodyweight or with any free weighted objects
for extra resistance such as barbells, dumbbells, kettlebells, sandbags, etc. Squats
should only be done with free weights – NEVER with a Smith machine or any other
squat machines! Machines do not allow your body to follow natural,
biomechanically-correct movement paths. You also perform less work because the
machine stabilizes the weight for you. Therefore, you get weaker results!
The type of squat that people are most familiar with is the barbell back squat where
the bar is resting on the trapezius muscles of the upper back. Many professional
strength coaches believe that front squats (where the bar rests on the shoulders in
front of the head) and overhead squats (where the bar is locked out in a snatch
grip overhead throughout the squat) are more functional to athletic performance
than back squats with less risk of lower back injury. I feel that a combination of all