When Women train Heavy, will you Bulk Up or LEAN OUT? Fat Loss Talk

The cultural roles and expectations that we face can make us feel self critical

I have no doubt that people who stay lean and healthy all year round are those who also surround themselves with similar people. So in that sense of culture, I believe that people with healthy mindsets are a benefit of culture for fat loss. At the same time, the images on TV and mass media are certainly causing shifts in the discussion of our bodies.

Seems that fit people share similar activities

Seems that fit people share similar activities

How does this all play into what it is to have a healthy body image?

Well, let’s ask what is it to have healthy body image? 

  • Wake up knowing you will take on the day, it will not take on you
  • Feels or seeks to feel intrinsic reasons to exercise
  • Finds way to challenge what the body is truly capable of physically and consequently mentally, emotionally
  • Places a high value of quality of food for both internal and external human benefit

It’s ultimately not about the body fat %. It’s not about six pack abs or firm buttocks. It’s about the you, the person.

Should Women Lift Heavy?

First, let’s focus on the goal of an individual. Not all women should lift heavy particularly if the exercise is contraindicated from orthopedic needs or for some other factor that precludes strength development.

Using a reasonable program, lifting progressively heavier weights has many benefits:

Progressive resistance on a body weight exercise

Progressive resistance on a body weight exercise

  • Increased calorie burn at rest
  • Develops the Fast Twitch muscle fibers which allow you to burn even more calories while exercising
  • Makes you stronger, more fit person
  • Promotes healthy metabolism, especially in the area of systemic glucose management and insulin resistance
  • Tends to put you in a good mood, feeling of accomplishments, actual achievements
  • Focuses on performance, what the body can do, a healthy perspective

There are many established benefits of lifting heavy weights for women. It’s not my case to argue whether or not you want to use heavier weights, but in the case that you do want to see the benefits, then you are at the right place.

All women have different response to exercise and nutrition

Because of our genes and our environmental conditions (including what your mother ate and how well she slept), everybody has different responses to lifting progressively heavier weights. So I’ll keep it simple here.

Woman who lift heavier weights WILL DEFINITELY BURN MORE FAT…

In terms of bulking, there are two main factors at play:

1. How much food is being eaten; the quality of food consumed is just as important as the overall volume

I'm not sure what she eats, but I'd bet it's pretty balanced nutritionally

I’m not sure what she eats, but I’d bet it’s pretty balanced nutritionally


2. The current hormonal status of the individual.

Let me elaborate on this for a moment. Just like in men, women have a range of testosterone and some women just naturally have more in their bodies. If this is the case, they may build muscle easier than other women. They may also be sexually aggressive but that is WAY beyond the scope of this.

On the other hand, diet can affect our hormones as well. Women who show a preference for frequent consumption of simple sugars, starches, alcohol, trans fats and other low quality foods are more likely to add “bulk” which is more visibly as fat mass.

Lift heavy to tone up and eat lean to stay lean

I'd wager she exercises too

I’d wager she exercises too

So it comes down to a discussion on body image

The worst reason to exercise is to look like somebody else. To have somebody’s butt or their legs or their arms.

You will never.

Best to focus on being you and accepting that exercise is your healing and you need it frequently.

Good luck all, thanks for reading

Nutrition Physical Fitness by Dre Weightloss Now

Technique for Novice Deadlifters

Deadlifts provide valuable training stimulus

They also go to show how strong you REALLY are.

That is because true strength requires muscles throughout the entire body to work at the most efficient joint angles. Technique is incredibly important for injury prevention and performance.

Deadlifts are for strength

Deadlifts are for strength

Like any exercise, deadlift is a skill which requires the lifter to learn the deadlift movement pattern.

Deadlift Fundamentals

For the deadlift, you should take note of these

1. Full body tension

2. Legs and hip drive

3. Squeeze the butt aggressively

4. Bar is as close to the body as possible during the entire lift

Deadlift Critique

Need to correct – Leaning forward
1. Chest Up
2. Hips back
3. Drive through the heels
Sit back into the rep, focus on using glutes as the power player.
Need to correct – Hips rise too fast
1.Focus on Leg Drive
2. Push heels into the ground
3. Spread the floor with your feet
Need to correct- Stopping short
1. Pull the bar towards the body
2. Squeeze glutes forcefully
Need to correct – Too much lower back on way down
1. Keep the chest up
2. Let the hips drop as soon as bar passes the knees

How to Improve your Deadlift

Main ways to improve the Deadlift

  • Practice the deadlift (train the deadlift)
  • Get stronger in all key areas (upper back, lower back, core, glutes, hamstrings, quads)
  • Practice the deadlift!!!

More reference: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_LhYspMFUmY

More reference 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-4qRntuXBSc

Keep at it y’all. Cuz you realize that when you’re deadlift technique is good, you WILL have a strong, strong, strong back and legs. Your spine will be protected by slabs of muscle and you will feel the strength in all the other areas of your life!!

(Comments disabled for this particular article due to spam — ask a question elsewhere or participate on another page!)

Physical Fitness by Dre

Core values for Fitness, Health, and Training

In the absence or presence of any experience, your core values will always be there.

I believe it is the core value of a person who is able to push forward under pain and stress.

It is the core value of a person to realize the truth of failure and then ascend to even greater heights.

It is the core value of a person to commit to their goals and hold themselves accountable.

For strength trainers, the core value manifests physically

You feel more powerful as the body realizes greater potential. The changes can be found in the tendons, ligaments, muscular elements, mineralization of bone, endocrine efficiency improvements, and energy systems adaptation. There is little vanity in seeking to become a better version of yourself.

Workouts can be fun!!

“ya I’m feeling good ’bout myself”

Lessons learned from intense training should carryover to mental toughness

We push ourselves in the gym not because we are afraid of the outcome, but because we embrace it. Either move forward or start dying because I don’t want to live a life without meaning. Intensity later balanced by harmony and back to intensity.

Raw strength has been valuable in nearly all cultures throughout time. As you become capable of performing heavy work through multiple planes of motion, you gain strength both inner and outer.

The struggles of life are best faced with strong core values, because no matter the outcome you strive to rise above it.


Power of the Mind

Lifting weights for aesthetics and strength

Strength, aesthetics, and overall improvement of quality of life.

That’s what a lot of gym goers are seeking.

The benefits of strength has been explored many times, but I’ll just say that it feels good to stronger.

He looks alright

He looks alright

We are going to talk about aesthetics. This is a complicated subject because everyone has these perceptions:

  • What do I think about my body?
  • What do I think that other people think about my body?
  • What do people actually think about my body?

What are the characteristics of an aesthetic physique?

It’s well known that men would prefer to have greater mass overall, whereas women say they would rather be attracted to a man with a slimmer more athletic physique. My overarching theme here is that first and foremost you should lift weights for whatever reasons you want to, and pursue goals relentlessly.

This, however, is a topic about aesthetics, so if you are interested read on.

Aesthetic physiques typically:

  • Fit, athletic, good muscle tone
  • Balanced, symmetrical
  • Move with ease, flexible yet strong, poise of a Greek God.
  • Healthy skin tone (from fruits/vegetables and sun exposure)
  • Look as if they are able to perform functionally (mass monsters need not apply)

So it seems like aesthetics are the underlying factors of physical attractiveness. It’s about looks, yet it’s about what it looks like that aesthetic person is capable of. It’s about what it looks like that person has in terms of personality traits and confidence.

If you had the body of a Greek God, wouldn’t you find confidence in those accomplishments.

How to Train for Aesthetics

Now I could tell you to squat, deadlift, and bench press and then see what happens. Some people will turn out great, while others will have obvious weak points that detract from their physique. In other words, everyone is built differently and requires unique modifications to their training based on limb length, torso size, prior injuries, etc.

And yet, I will still tell you to Deadlift, Squat, and Bench Press because this will help to build AND measure your overall strength. Some people hardly deadlift, except to see where their strength levels are at.

The major lifts are the foundation, then from there on all you have to do is hit the muscles from different angles and rep ranges. WITH INTENSITY.

Beast mode should definitely be activated during those crucial moments.

Natural vs unnatural

For people who choose to not use steroids/AAS, the gains will come differently and the training will be different as well. Just don’t expect to look big and shredded like the people in the magazines unless you’re willing to use the same chemicals they do.

A very famous strongman from the old days

Overall, I’d say that general population appreciates a natural physique in terms of aesthetics. There is more value to the strength because it is unassisted.

Eat clean, train hard, and sleep well.

Then do it consistently.

Physical Fitness by Dre

Why Bodyweight Training is Essential for Fitness

Bodyweight exercise has existed before any other kind.

Whether humans were running along the fertile ground near rivers or performing feats of strength as ritual, the ability to have control over one’s body is more human than any other training.

These guys didn’t wake up one day and do a handstand… no — they trained for it.

Rediscover the benefits of bodyweight exercise

  • Exercise in a natural range of motion
  • Metabolic boosts, calorie burning
  • Improved recovery capacity and less stress on the central nervous system
  • Typically supports joint health and muscles which stabilize the joint
  • Lean muscle tone

Why don’t more people do bodyweight training?

Even though there are many subcultures of fitness which are entirely dedicated to bodyweight training, the truth is that most people have a failure to appreciate the difficulty of bodyweight exercises.

The Planche is a static hold requiring tension throughout the entire body. This is an advanced position requiring many months of progression and exercises as well as a lean physique with low body fat.

The result, however, is an incredibly fit individual. This is just an example of how bodyweight exercises can increase in difficulty by changing the levers of the exercise. What was once a push up position now supports the entire body in the air.

The cons of bodyweight exercise

Gaining the strength, skill, coordination to perform advanced variations is difficult enough. Moreover, most people simply don’t have the physique (at this point in time) to be able to perform advanced exercises.

So most people are forced to begin with simple variations on bodyweight exercises and they feel very humbled by how much trouble they have. Instead of doing bodyweight exercises, many gym-goers go off and use implements such as dumbbells and machines. People with large body mass or people with significant excess body fat will have difficulty performing bodyweight exercises.

“Older” guys can do it too. Jack Lalane showing his fingertip push up skills.

On the flip side, people with very LOW body mass (skinny people) may have more trouble building muscle mass from bodyweight exercises alone because their bodies are not forced to move as much weight. For example, if a 130 pound guy does 20 chin ups, versus a 200 pound guy who does 15 chin ups — who do you think will have bigger arms and back as a result of chin up practice? Most likely the larger guy.

Embrace the challenge

This man realized the benefits of bodyweight training in association with weighted implement training.

The more I learn about the human body, the more I realize that bodyweight exercises should be foundational and not supplemental. The joint health benefits alone are significant enough, and then you should also remember the coordination and functional benefits as well.

Physical Fitness by Dre

Learning from Bodybuilding, Success, and the Zyzz

Ripped, muscular bodies.

How many boys have dreamed big? Like Superheo big. Thanks to human nature and cultural media, we have become overexposed to ideals of perfection.

“I bench press 2,000 pounds”

The perfect body is so very alluring. The look is beauty with strength, a sort of gentle confidence that exudes power over the situation. Of course, the personality is the foundation for all exterior vessels of humanity.

Zyzz was willing to try anything once

While many guys find comfort in video games and DVDs, Zyzz pushed beyond himself. Despite his devil-may-care attitude, he inspired many young men in Australia, North America, and worldwide.

Zyzz (Before) Body type: Scrawny. Interests: World of Warcraft and seeking lulz

Enough is enough.

Think about the last time you reached a breaking point.

It’s the same thing with fitness. Actually, it’s the same as it relates to EVERY type of modification to the body. You realize that it’s worth the effort or money to do something today — now.

The Aesthetic ideal… Zyzz?

If you asked any guy in the world if he could wake up tomorrow and have that body…

Zyzz gained fame for his philosophy of aesthetics over mass.

Zyzz personified what most people thought to be the ideal physique.

The downfall of Zyzz

No one is invincible to the forces of nature. When the body composition changes drastically, the body is pressured to seek homeostasis. So if you are constantly on fire, building muscle or downing drugs, you will realize that the exterior isn’t always the best marker of health.

Zyzz was inspirational, no doubt. Sure, he was young and reckless, but he was passionate. You could feel it, you wanted him to call you a, “s*ck c*nt,” which became an Australian battle-cry to motivate yourself to train harder and eat better! To be known as a, “s*ck c*nt,” was to be known as the type of person who would get up, move heavy objects, and maintain a healthy appetite for food. It was motivational for young men in the stage of defining their masculinity.

After a few too many laboratory produced cocktails, Zyzz passed away in a fatal Thai steam room. Later reports mentioned an undiagnosed heart condition, but made no comment as to whether the anabolic steroids played a role in his death. R.I.P. sir, you will remain a key figure in the society of aesthetic bodybuilding.

Video contains mature language.

What lessons to learn from Zyzz?

The first is passion and execution. You must get the fire in your system, then go out and perform through progressively more challenging physical activities.

Secondly is that to promote effectively, it helps to get out there. He understood that his body was a major attraction to be inspired by, proud of, or any other type of attraction a person may feel. Being ripped out of your mind will definitely separate you from the pack.

Lastly is the finalé of Zyzz. He perished due to his ride high lifestyle. His body was seeking homeostasis and all it was receiving was more stimulation. As a result, the body will eventually go numb.

The inspiration lives on…

I take this valuable lesson for Zyzz. Be whoever you want to be and don’t be afraid to do it. You can make changes in your own life and in the life of others by being inspired.

Zyzz made an incredible change.

As for the natural vs anabolic steroids discussion, I will leave that for another post. This blog post is just one more dedication to the shortened life of Zyzz.

Blog & Personality Celebrity's & Weight Loss

The Inverted Row: Best Upper-Back Exercise known to man?

The Inverted Row is gaining popularity, but it still remains an underrated movement.

To get a visual, first pause and imagine the Bench Press exercise for a moment. The bench press is a pushing exercise that brings the bar to your chest and then pushes it away. Whereas the inverted row is a pulling exercise that brings your chest to the bar and then you lower yourself back down.


Back built by rows

Think about the complete opposite of the Bench Press — this is the Inverted Row.


Inverted Row

The Inverted Row is the ultimate upper back exercise.

In the next few paragraphs, I will make the case for why every gym goer in search of a strong, healthy, balanced physique should be doing the Inverted Row exercise.

Aside from the strength benefits, the Inverted Row wins points in a variety of categories related to the ideal physique.

I. Comparison of Barbell Row vs. Inverted Row

The Barbell Row is also a highly effective compound exercise for the back. If you’re looking to build a great physique, then the Barbell Row (or a variation) should probably be somewhere in your routine.

However, the Barbell Row has some contraindications and limitations that may make the exercise inappropriate for some people.


Barbell Row

Benefits of the Barbell Row:

  • One of the best exercises for back and arms
  • You can adjust the weight according to your own strength levels
  • It’s possible to use lots of weight (powerlifters can often row up to 300+ lbs)
  • Can build muscle and tone your physique
  • Crossover strength into other exercises

Disadvantagesof the Barbell Row:

  • Possibility of injury with improper form
  • Strain the lower back if not careful

Avoid lower back pain

  • You can “cheat” very easily on the form, which decreases its benefits
  • Doesn’t activate lower trapezius as much (a small, yet essential muscle for shoulder health)
  • Is not a direct counter-balancing movement to the Bench Press

As you can see, the Barbell Row is a fantastic exercise for a lot of people. If you train the Row, then more power to you!

But there are some areas in which the BB Row can’t keep up compared to the Inverted Row.

II. Benefits of the Inverted Row

The Inverted Row is an exceptional upper back exercise.

Similar to a pull up, push up, and other bodyweight exercises, the Inverted Row is a closed kinetic chain movement. In terms of fitness, is important to be able to move your body through space at a variety of angles.

In order to perform a feet-elevated inverted row, you must already be strong or you can do inverted row progressions to gain the required strength.

The Inverted Row with feet elevated is so demanding that 90% of an average gym population won’t be able to complete a single rep with perfect form. It is indeed a humbling exercise, especially for guys who can bench 300+ pounds.

So here are the top benefits of the Inverted Row…

1. Builds a great Phsyique

What guy doesn’t want at least a little more muscle? What gal doesn’t want that hourglass shape torso?

The Inverted Row is definitely a physique builder alone or in a well designed program. The actual exercise itself can be a great stimulus for muscle growth, but even better is that it is a great activation exercise so it can benefit your other movements.


Jamie likes to row

  • Rear delts
  • Middle trapezius
  • Lower trapezius
  • Lats
  • Rombhoids
  • Biceps
  • Forearms
  • Core

2. NO Lower-back strain

Our lower backs are simply not designed to move a lot of weight. The lower back is designed to remain rigid while the primary movers of the body do their work. Thats everyone knows they should “lift with your legs.”

During an alternative exercise like the Barbell Row, the lower back may succumb to the weight before the upper back. If the lower back is too weak, you won’t get the true benefits for the upper back during that exercise.

The Inverted Row takes the lower back out of the equation.

Low Back pain does not exist in this exercise.

3. Strengthens the Shoulder Girdle (Shoulder Health)

The Inverted Row movement requires a lot of effort from the muscles in the middle back. These muscles are particularly important for shoulder health.

In particular, the lower trapezius, middle trapezius, and rhomboids need to be balanced compared to other muscles. For example, the lower trapezius should have similar activation to the upper trapezius. When people have upper traps that are too dominant, it contributes to the “slunched over” posture and can wreak havoc on the shoulder joint. The inverted row strengthens the lower trapezius at just the right angle.

The inverted row is not only a great movement for the lower trapezius, but it is also a fantastic rear-deltoid exercise as well. Aside from making your physique look fantastic from all angles, the rear-deltoids should be balanced to the front-deltoids for…you guessed it…shoulder health.

4. Benefits the Bench Press

Dear Benchers, I’d like to win you over here, because the Bench Press is the one exercise that every single person on the planet knows about. We all know how awesome the bench press is. It gives you great chest, shoulder, and tricep development. In other words, it makes you manly and powerful. (Or lean and alluring, if you are female).

Bio-mechanically, the Inverted Row is the perfect compliment to the Bench Press. Instead of pushing a bar away from you, you are pulling yourself towards a bar.

Think of the upper back as the foundation, while the chest is the active machinery during bench press. If your foundation is a pile of feathers, how effective is your machinery?


Dumbbell Bench Pressing supported by upper back.

What most people don’t realize is that the muscles in the back are constantly stabilizing the muscles in the front during the Bench Press. Essentially what this means is that stronger upper back equals a stronger bench press.

Strong upper back –> strong foundation –> Big Bench Press.

5. Promotes optimal Recovery

After you get into weight lifting for a while, you realize one fundamental element…

Success in the game is a balance between training and recovery. The stimulus is the weight lifting, while the recovery includes everything from the food you eat, the timing of the food you eat, the amount of sleep you get, and essentially everything else you do.

Therefore, recovery is different for everybody. You want to optimize recovery because it allows you make more progress and stay healthy. (if you seriously overtrain, you will lose progress, get hurt, or get sick — guaranteed)

Bodyweight exercises are inherently easier to recover from compared to barbell exercises. This means that you can do bodyweight exercises more frequently and potentially make progress significantly faster than barbell exercises alone.

The Inverted Row, while a demanding exercise, is easier to recover from than the barbell row.

Training hard in the gym accounts for maybe 15% of your gains, while optimal recovery accounts for the rest.

Thats why you need to eat well, sleep well, and do bodyweight exercises!

6. Functional Strength development

Would you still be as impressed by a guy who could bench press 500 pounds, but couldn’t move his own body through a simple plane of motion?

Powerlifters struggle to lift as much weight as possible in the bench press, and even their coaches tell them they need to do bodyweight exercises — especially the Inverted Row.

The Inverted Row is a functional strength exercise with significant carryover to other exercises and quality of life.

Now you know…

This is why the Inverted Row is one of the best Upper Back exercises known to man, and why we need to spread the word to our fellow man.

III. How to perform the Inverted Row.

You may look at the picture and think you know how to do an inverted row, and you may very well be able to. Just keep in mind a few cues to help you out.


Inverted Row Feet Elevated

1.  Foot placement determines difficulty.

Place feet on ground for beginners, and feet elevated for advanced trainees.

2. Keep your butt up

If your butt sags down, you are not doing the exercise right. Keep that butt tight and elevated.

3. Maintain Core Stiffness

This may be a core exercise for those with less developed abs. It is important to maintain core tightness, and keep your butt up, because this will put the lower back in the right position. It also enables you to focus on the primary mover, which is your back.

4. Chest up

Open up your chest, keep it up and out.

5. Lean your head back

When the head goes back, it puts your body in a position to activate the muscles that you really want. This helps to activate the lower-traps and muscles surrounding the shoulder blades.

6. Do not use momentum

Momentum is cheating. If you can’t complete a full rep with feet elevated, then start with the progressions first. Feet to the ground.

In terms of execution…

  • Pull from the elbows and middle back.
  • Squeeze your shoulder blades together at the top of the movement.
  • Try to activate as much of your back as possible.
  • I like to squeeze at the top for a count of 2 seconds
  • Go up fast, then lower yourself slower

Here is a video to give you the visual of it.

IV. Go forth and Row!

I would say that 95% of people in weightlifting programs should be doing at least one variation of row. Rowing is essential for strengthening the muscles of the back.

TRX system check it out on Amazon.com. Definitely one of the best bodyweight tools, used by all my clients.

TRX system check it out on Amazon.com. Definitely one of the best bodyweight tools, used by all my clients.

As a follower of drefitness.com, you now have the knowledge of this incredible upper-back exercise.

You know how I feel about the all-powerful and beneficial Inverted Row.

I’ll let you decide whether or not you think the Inverted Row truly is the best upper-back exercise known to man.

Either way, give it a go next time you work your upper back! Prepare to be humbled.

Physical Fitness by Dre