The Secret Butt Exercise

April 7, 2014 by  
Filed under The Fitness Bug

It was only after I wrote the post ‘The art of building a bigger butt‘ that I found out that you all are looking for ways to increase or define your butt, better known as the glutes. And in some cases some of you are actually trying decrease the size of your butt. (Lucky Big butt b*****ds)

But today I am going to continue the saga of ways that you can increase the size of and strength of your butt muscles.

Why is it so important to focus on this so much?

Unless you are happy with having chicken leg syndrome, you will definitely want to make building your butt a priority in your weightlifting workouts. This is because,

  1. When your butt muscles gets lazy, it will be just like hitting a weightlifting plateau and your muscles will just get used to not being very active. This bad, because having a weak non-active butt will make you weaker in all of your lower body exercises that you perform.
  2. A weak butt will also push your pelvis forward and make your lower abs stick out. This will give you that dreaded pop belly look that we tried to get rid of back in lower ab exercises.

Introducing The Hip Raise

The reason why this exercise is called a secret is because most guys will ignore it because they see it as a ‘girls’ exercise. But don’t be as ignorant as those guys. This is an exercise that will put the burning desire back into your butt muscles. And this is how you do them.

  • Lie on your back on the floor
  • Bend your knees up and keep your feet flat and parallel with the floor
  • Tense the core of your body and squeeze your butt
  • Raise your hips up so that your body forms a straight line from your knees to your shoulders
  • Hold for 5 seconds, then lower back down to the starting position

Make sure that you are moving your Torso and hips at the same time when you do this exercise. You will know that you are doing it the correct way if you are keeping the arch in your back at the same level throughout the exercise. Start of with a gym partner to make sure that you are doing as follows. Once you get used to it, go ahead and perform this exercise solo.

How do I include this exercise in my weightlifting Routine?

Perform it right at the start of your weightlifting routine. Doing so will warm your glutes up and get you ready for exercise such as squats, lunges and dead lifts.

Now get off of your arse and go and build that butt already.

See you in the comments.

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Bodybuilding Ammunition For ‘UBER’ Productive Workouts (Part 2)

March 28, 2014 by  
Filed under The Fitness Bug

Welcome to part 2 buggers!

As you know from yesterdays post, it really is about being productive in your workouts, otherwise everything from working out consistently and intensely to sticking to the right meal plan will just go to waste. So again, the devil is in the detail.

One question that I always seem to silently ask myself, which is constantly on my mind is,

‘ Am I actually getting fit. Am I actually improving my health’

In the early days it was all about ‘not trying to grow to much muscle mass, otherwise it may turn into fat’. A statement which in itself makes absoultely no sense at all, as both muscle and fat are both completly different. But hey, I was younger and dumber. With time, I realised that what I really wanted to avoid was growing to a size which would place me in the unfit club.

The only way to avoid this is by doing more cardio based exercises in your workouts. But as this article explains, it’s all about finding a balance. And the balance that you (the stayfitbug reader) will want is to do the right amount of cardio without jeopardizing your muscle gaining efforts. One way that you can gauge this is by using a…

Heart Rate Monitor

This is the perfect tool for this scenario for quite a few reasons

  1. It will allow you to monitor the level of intensity you are putting out
  2. It will show you how ‘fit’ or ‘unfit’ you really are
  3. It will allow you to pace yourself towards your set goal and within the time frame that you have set. This prevents you from doing too much, or from doing too little.
  4. In terms of actual health and your heart (which I have always been concerned with), it will let you know how hard you are pushing and will tell you when to increase, stay put or decrease your level of output. So not only will you be maintaining a healthy heart, you will be doing just the right amount of cardio for your weightlifting workout.

Write Down What You Do In Your Workout

Again? Didn’t you tell us to do that in this post?

Yes I did. But now you are going to take it one step further. Now that you have got into the habit of writing things down, you will now use this data to workout what it is that you have to do next to progress effectively. Kind of like a prequel to being a visualizing bodybuilder. You will use this to construct your game plan. ‘This’ is the game plan that you will visualize!

But to do this effectively you will do two things.

1. Have your game plan written down, visualize doing it and then perform it.

2. Write down what you did that day and compare the two.

You will need to do this because you won’t perform your game plan to perfection every single time. Perfection simply does not exist. But there is no harm in aiming for ‘near’ perfection… it will just take time. And this is one effective way of doing that. You will be able to see in plain site where you are going wrong and how you can go about correcting it. But best of all, you will be able to workout how you can be more productive.

The key things to monitor will be your rest periods between sets. I can bet that if your workouts are currently an hour long on average, you probably aren’t working out with the level of intensity that you have seen me describe here.

Workout Like A Barbarian

And if that is the case, then you aren’t being productive in your workouts. If you do manage to trim that time down to 30 minutes, then I know you will be doing something right… becasue you won’t have the energy to leave a comment at the end of this post. But if you are a real barbarian, then I’ll see you in the comments!

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Xercise Ball Pack from SPRI

January 25, 2014 by  
Filed under Gym Equiment, The Fitness Bug

 SPRI Presents: Xercise Ball Packxercise-ball-ball_crunch_up

SPRI Xercise Ball Package With DVD And Pump, 65 Cm Xercise Ball Pack

It’s time for another addition to your arsenal of home gym equipment. In previous posts (namely unique bodyweight exercises part 2) you would have seen the exercise ball being used a few times for exercises such as crunches. There are other exercises you will be using this ball for such as side bends and leg presses, but the abdominals will be the key body part that you will work on the most with the exercise ball.

Since this site has been up, it has been made aware to me that the abs are the no.1 area that most of you want to train, whether you are trying to lose fat to get it to show, or are simply trying to get the the ripped ‘ I’ve eaten a radiator’ look.

Some of you have complained about lower back problems too, from doing normal floor sit ups. Using the Xercise ball will solve that problem as performing the same or similar exercises with the ball will give you a greater range of motion (how far you can stretch). If you are lost when it comes to knowing how to perform the exercises you have seen so far, then hold tight, that will be included in the ebook as well.

So for those who don’t yet have one of these, or are intending to get one since viewing the bodyweight exercises posts, this is the one I’ve been using.

(Note: If you are a pretty big guy, say 5’10” plus, you’ll want to go for the biggest ball at 75cm)

Only a couple of more bodyweight exercise accessories to go, but for now, go and have a ball.

SPRI Xercise Ball Package With DVD And Pump, 65 Cm Xercise Ball Pack

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5 Things To Request From Your Gym For Inspiration

April 27, 2010 by  
Filed under The Fitness Bug

Today I am continuing with the bodybuilding environment theme, in which we find ways to keep your workouts inspiring and engaging. All in aid of making your bodybuilding life a lot more ‘Fun’. Especially for those days where you feel like sh*t!

If you want to have a fun and memorable time working out, then you might as well fix the place where you will be spending most of your time…

At the gym that you attend!

You probably won’t stand a chance in requesting big changes if you attend a top class and flashy gym (Unless you have a large following behind you). But if you attend a smaller and more local type of gym, you can get the word out to the owner to make changes around the gym. Changes that will be beneficial to all that attend.

If you do manage to persuade the head honcho, then these are some of the things that you should request.


Because the local gym that I have been attending for the past 4 years has implemented these things. And they work like a charm!

#1 Posters

Not just any old posters. Posters of successful bodybuilders! (Men AND Women!)

And here’s a preview…

There really is something special about working out and having these posters to look at. They really do work on the inspiration side of things. I tend to just stare at them in-between sets and let my mind just wonder off.

The next time you go to the gym, show these posters to the gyms head honcho. He won’t turn you away!

I’ll probably send out an email to all subscribers soon, with a stack load of posters which you can use as desktop wallpapers or print off as A3 sized sheets as a poster. So be sure to sign up if you haven’t done so already, by clicking on that orange and white ebook… THERE >>>

#2 Bodybuilding Mantras

These aren’t really bodybuilding mantras per se. But some of the classic mantras from past successors work well for a bodybuilder. These are very similar to the effects that posters give in the gym. However, reading some of these mantras while you workout really does give you that ‘eye of the tiger’ drive, especially when you begin to fatigue. Fatigue can sometimes be laziness in disguise. Reading the same ‘good’ mantras over and over again will reveal which one you are suffering from… fatigue… or laziness.

Check out the bodybuilding mantras post HERE for those that missed it.

#3 Music

Yesterday I talked about surveys. Today I’m going to share some survey results.

What music do you prefer to listen to when you workout answered question?

Response Percentage

  • Rock 56.3%
  • Hip hop 31.3%
  • Pop 25.0%
  • Dance 50.0%
  • House 12.5%
  • Electronic 0.0%
  • Techno 0.0%

These are the results of the stayfitbuggers that took the survey upon visiting this site. These results show that you are all very similar to myself, in terms of what I like my eardrums to feel when I workout. Rock or Hip Hop. Either Will do!

Most gyms will usually stick the radio on. Nothing wrong with that. But the radio does play some trash music at times, and you’ll probably hear the same songs over and over, especially if you attend the gym 3-4 times a week.

Get at the head honcho again. You probably won’t need a DJ on this occasion, but a decent custom made playlist can do wonders for a bodybuilding gym community.

That could actually be a good though Shaun… DJ’s in a gym? Hmmmm…..

#4 Before and After Photos of Successful Gym Goers

This is what I call ‘making those earlier bodybuilding posters personal!’


Well… most of the guys and girls in those posters are usually bodybuilding pros. They’ve probably made a career out of bodybuilding and worked 24/7 to get their bodies to look the way they do.


But not great for your average joe.

Starring at those posters are great, and present a fine display of what can be achieved with the human body. But you’ll be mostly rubbing those folks ego, because you’ll never build a body like theirs.



Put up posters of those who came before you, in that same gym, who worked their asses off and built supreme bodies. That will be solid proof of what can really be achieved by the everyday working man or woman. You can develop a true solid connection as many of those folks will still visit on occasion. At that point you can get talking to them and find out some of the things that worked for them. They could probably work for you too, but just remember that you’ll need to find your own bodybuilding map.

#5 Find Hot Female Gym Members (Or males – For you lady readers :-))

Meeting highly attractive members of the opposite sex at the gym can be a ‘yay’ or ‘nay’, depending on who you are. I personally like to just stay focused on my workout. Having an attractive lady around will just knock my focus. But that’s just me.

For the rest of you, working out in the presence of a ‘hotty’ might be the ONLY thing that keeps you coming back week after week. Nothing wrong with that! After all, it’s about making this bodybuilding game as fun as we can. ‘Fun’ is the only thing that will keep us engaged for the long term.

Since that is the case, get that head honcho to start advertising his gym services to the sexy elite beings of this human race. Tell him to get more females first.


Because the guys will go where the girls are at. Simple.

You can tell him that it will be good for business. Because it will be.

There probably are other things that may aspire you in your prime bodybuilding location, but these are the things that have worked well in the gyms that I have attended. Some of the gyms you attend might already be doing some f the above, if so, good! But if not, you better get knocking on the head honchos door, because inspiration is a must in this game.

See you in the comments.

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Build Equal Size Biceps And Triceps… PLEASE!!!

April 15, 2010 by  
Filed under The Fitness Bug

Today I’m going to have an official ‘RANT’ ( A big complaint about something)

Today I am blasting all of one dimensional armed freaks out there who have decided to go to the gym to get ripped (good) but have failed to build equal sized, well rounded arms (bad). Meaning,

A) Has biceps/ No triceps

B) Has triceps/ No biceps

How does this happen?

1. Obsessive use of the tricep extension machine

2. Obsessive amount of bicep curls

In a nutshell…

Too much focus on isolation exercises!

Unless you have arms that are bigger than 15 inches, your entire focus should be on compound exercises ( exercises that work more than one muscle group at a time). That is when you will get the best results. When you hit a plateau, you just switch things up a little (Something which I constantly throw in your face). After a little time your arms will grow… equal in size!


When you focus on isolation exercises, you may think that doing endless bicep curls and tricep extensions will make them grow.


What’s actually happening is that you are damaging and shrinking them. So if you do end up with,

A) Big biceps/ No triceps

B) Big triceps/ No biceps

It’s because you are doing something right with your compound exercises, but something wrong with your forced efforts with isolation exercises. Which in turn hampers your growth. The only time you should be focusing on isolation exercises is when you are a seasoned bodybuilder and you know exactly what your muscles need at that current point in time (You find this out after you have your bodybuilding map and route in gear – Grab the 6 pac ebook to see how you can do this ).

Now that we have that cleared up, FIX IT!

Being a fitness freak, it’s hard not to notice these imbalances when you are out and about, as people start to strip off in the sun. But not having equal sized arms just isn’t sexy. In some ways it makes you look like a freak.

Just do yourself a favour and build some proper looking arms dammit. You’re hurting my eyes out here.

You have the correction and instructions now, so like Nike,


See you in the comments.

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Increase Endurance In A Kids Ball Pit

April 14, 2010 by  
Filed under The Fitness Bug

I know I mentioned that I was going to post part 2 to yesterdays post, but your just going to have to wait. I want to make it sexy 🙂

Any how, I want to share something that’s even more fun than that.

Playing in a kids ball pit!

I have been fascinated with these ever since I stepped foot in one as a kid (The ball pit maze to be specific). I don’t quite know why exactly. Maybe it’s just a part of a fantasy world that I wish to be in.

But after playing in these a few times (Yes, I have dived into one since my migration to adulthood) I realized how great playing in a ball pit can be as part of an endurance workout.

The obvious thing to notice here, is all of the swimming around, with the balls fighting against your ability to swim forward (Resistance). It might not seem like a lot in the first few moments of doing this (as a workout) But the balls really do hold you back and test your strength endurance to carry on.

If you really do want to give this a try then add it to a circuit (Krypton factor style) and then swim several laps inside of the ball pit. This is great for some variation and a unique way to test and increase your endurance. All while having fun 🙂

Talk you thoughts in the comments.

… See you in the comments.

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I Succeeded In Just ‘X’ Months! The Before And After Scam | BodyBuilding

March 23, 2010 by  
Filed under The Fitness Bug

‘I built monster sized muscle in just 3 months!’

‘I lost ‘X’ number of pounds in just 4 weeks!’

These are phrases that you hear often, in almost every industry. Especially in the fitness and bodybuilding industry. You’ll often hear some state quotes such as,

I succeeded in ‘this’ many months, ‘that’ many months.. blah, blah, blah…

Yea, it would be cool to get great results quickly, and sometimes that can happen. But the real success lies in how to keep building on that success. The phrase ‘I Succeeded In Just ‘X’ Months!’ is usually just a show off or marketing phrase to lure people in. Heck, I may even use it in certain situations. But if I ever do, you can be damn sure that I’ll be providing long term value at the end of the tunnel.

So in reality, those statements that you hear people quote are often false positives. Don’t fall for them. Always make sure you are that devil that is looking ever so closely at the detail. And just know that there is NO magical way to get real, meaningful fitness or bodybuilding results without some hard work and gut wreching graft.

Let me show you what I mean. Here is an example of EXACTLY the thing I am talking about.

Natalie Cassidy

This is Natralie Cassidy, an actor in the UK who shot to fame on the popular TV soap Eastenders, and the picture above is how she used to look. Then, she left the show, disappeared for a while, and re-appeared on the scene, slimmer, sexier and magically even prettier than before. All by using her secret formula of a weight loss program.

And within no time at all, her program sold like hot cakes

$$$ Chi-Chingggggg $$$


But Then…

She gained it all back! (Ohh Nooo)

I was actually disappointed when I saw that she had let her self go and put all that weight back on again. Maybe I should have created Stay-Fit Bug a few years earlier. That would have helped her ‘KEEP’ the body that she built. Either way, her fans must have been disappointed some what. Their new weight loss idol had fallen from the helm. Who are they to look up to now?

This scenario right here is why I have banished Natalie Cassidy into the,

‘I Succeeded In Just ‘X’ Months! The Before And After Scam’

There are other examples out there. This is just one of them.

Shaun’s Point Is?

My point is this…

If you are going to brag, boast and market yourself using the phrase ‘ I succeeded In Just ‘X’ Months’, then make sure you provide some long term value to the audience that you have converted. These are the people that were most likely in the exact same situation as you were, yet you managed to achieve where they continued to fail. Because of that they will always look up to you, and anything that comes out of your mouth will be taken at face value and executed without question.  If you are going to be a role model, then be one. The moment your audience see you slip up, you automatically incorparate the ‘He/She’s fake’ tag, and they might just move on.


They might understand that you are human, and that very same audience could possibly be the cause of raising you up from the pits of demise to a once again glorious rise… to the top!

Success and Money can be a great thing. But as always, it comes with increased responsibility for your actions.

The Bodybuilding Culprits

This is one of the most prolific scam products that circulates the internet using a similar mantra from ‘I Succeeded in just ‘X’ Months’ in the Bodybuilding world.

The Acai Berry Supplement

Not the acai berry itself. That is a very nutritional fruit full of antioxidants. What I’m talking about here is the actual supplements some of these companies are putting on on the market.

The Oprah Winfrey Endorsed Acai Berry Supplement

We all know that when Oprah speaks and endorses something, it becomes an instant impulse purchase for those who listen to what she has to say. There are companies all around the internet that claim Oprah has endorsed their product, when in fact, all she done was give the actual acai berry the thumbs up after a recommendation from Dr. Oz !

These guys are all fakes and there are just too many to name. But the fact is, none of their supplements work. They are all ineffective.

Shame on them!

I will probably do what they do at times and post quotes like ‘I Succeeded In Just ‘X’ Months!’ But I will always follow it up by providing long term value and raising my game when my decline starts to kick in. Because everything that goes up has only one way to go after that point… Back down!

See you in the comments.

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The Workout Routine That Has It All!

January 22, 2010 by  
Filed under Bugs Workout Routines, The Fitness Bug

Well… It nearly has it all. The only thing this workout routine won’t give you is big bulging muscles. However, it will give you super functional strength along with speed, agility and endurance. That surely is more beneficial to you than muscles that just look nice for the ladies to see and feel…. right?

Well… I’ll leave that question for you to answer. Nevertheless, this workout routine nearly has it all.

*Words of Warning*

This workout is not for the faint hearted

If you remember my guest post on Balancing Cardio Exercises for Weight Training you will remember the part where I talked about high intensity training, running up hills once or twice per week and the level of fitness you need to be at to perform that.

This workout routine stands side by side with high intensity training and here’s what you will need in place before you even think about doing it.

What You Need

  • No injuries, especially in your lower body.
  • Doctors approval – I’m not going to be responsible for any untimely deaths. Take precautions and get your doctors opinion noting your current state of fitness and health.
  • New gym shoes – your current gym shoes may have lost their support through wear and tear, so buy some new ones to ensure you have full 100% foot support.
  • A jump rope.
  • A large bottle of water.

*Another Warning*

This is a non stop routine, your body will be moving at every moment during this routine. So there will be no time to stop off over at the water fountain.

  • An empty gym – You’ll see why in a moment.

What You Need To Do

Design your routine

That is,

  • Choose 4 upper body exercises.
  • Choose 4 lower body exercises.

To make things simple for you, I’ll start you off.

Upper body – Bench press, lat pulldown, dumbbell biceps curl and row

Lower body – Squats, hamstring curl, the adductor and abductor machines

Structure a good order to do them in (Based on the layout of your gym) and then do a practice walk through.

The Workout Routine that has it all

  • You lift light weights as fast as you can while maintaining perfect form, doing between 10-15 reps.
  • Once you complete one set, grab the jump rope and jump for 15 seconds (Increase the time as you get better).
  • Put the two jump rope handles in one hand, drink some water, put the bottle in the other hand, and walk quickly to your next exercise.

If the equipment you need is in use, just move on to the next exercise and then go back to it once it is free (This is why you need an empty gym).

  • Remember – No stopping! If you been to fatigue, just limit the number of reps you do and decrease your jump rope time. But don’t stop
  • Each group of exercises alternated with the jump rope is one set.
  • Perform 4 sets of each (10-15 reps)
  • At the end of each set, walk slowly around the gym for one minute and thirty seconds and breathe deeply

That’s it. The reading part is easy. Now go and do the damn thing.

I already know that you may initially struggle with the above, and when you, it won’t be the end of the world. All you have to do is cut everything back.

  1. Resistance – Can’t handle 10kg dumbbells? Decrease the weight to 5kg.
  2. Jump rope – Can’t last for 15 seconds? Just do 10 jumps each time.

This routine maybe off putting for most of you muscle heads reading this, as the focus is to build muscle mass. But guess what? It will help you build superior functional strength which will help you lift heavier free weights and max out your reps during your unique bodyweight exercises.

I’ll be really interesting to see your feedback on this routine, and once you do put it into action, feel free to drop your response in the comments.

See you there.

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Elite Exercise Execution (Part 1)

January 7, 2010 by  
Filed under The Fitness Bug

Tricep Cable Pull downs

This is one of my favorite exercises for building up my triceps, as it seems to give me the best results every time. However, to get the best results for your efforts, you will need to perform the exercise the correct way. Which is something you might not currently be doing.

Common mistakes

1) Using your whole body to push the weight back down at the top of the motion.
2) Elbows raise up to high.

This is a double negative because you are putting extra strain on your body (which can sometimes lead to injury) and performing the exercise incorrectly. Which in turn means you are getting the least results for your efforts.

The correction

1) Instead of using your whole body, just use your arms. That is where you want to build muscle, so that is the only part of your body that needs to move with this exercise.

2) This could be happening for one of 2 reasons

  • Using your whole body to control the motion of the exercise, which results in an uncoordinated body movement. Hence why your arms are all over the place.
  • The weight you’re currently using is too heavy. I’ve previously mentioned the disadvantages of using a weight that’s too heavy for your current self and if that is the case, make sure you lower the weight and increase it over time, as you grow stronger.

Raising your elbows too high will kill the concentration of the movement to your tricep muscles. However, you can allow them to travel a few inches upward as you reach the top level of the movement. Just make sure that you stay close to the cable at this point, as doing so will provide more resistance.

Dumbbell Lateral Raises

This again is another favourite exercise and is the reason why most people can tell I workout, just by looking at my shoulders… when fully dressed. However, this is another exercise that I see being performed incorrectly far to often.

Common mistakes

  • ‘Good’ Posture (Yes, it’s actually bad)
  • Arms not bent enough
  • Shoulders raised to high

I see many variations of the wrong. But here is a single variation to get it right.

The first thing you will want to do is stretch before the exercise and then relax your muscles a little when you begin the stance. Then,

  • Hold both dumbbells together vertically in front of your thighs
  • Bend over slightly with your knees and hips bent too

Raising your arms

This is all about correct technique. What you will need to do is raise your arms with a bend in your elbows (10-30 degree angle) and keep them that way throughout the whole movement.

Raise your arms until your elbows are shoulder height and keep them above your wrists.  At this point your elbows should be directly lateral to your shoulders, as your elbows will be slightly bent forward.

Improve your grip strength

If there were one thing that I wish I had done back when I first performed this exercise, it would be to focus on my grip strength. Not doing so meant that I couldn’t perform the exercise to it’s full potential.


If you have weak grip strength, then you may notice your hands slipping from the dumbbells during the later sets or later reps of early sets. This will happen for sure as you increase the weight too.

Tip: Don’t increase the weight too much with this exercise, that won’t be needed. This exercise is all about execution and focusing on that is what will get you those killer shoulders.

There are many exercises that I have performed and watched others perform ‘incorrectly’ which deserve to make their way to Elite Exercise Execution. I will cover more of these and feel free to let me know which exercises you have struggled with or watched others struggle with, which you think would be worthy to be mention in Elite Exercise Execution.

See you in the comments.

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10 Ways To Do More In Less Time

January 4, 2010 by  
Filed under The Fitness Bug

Join a nearby gym

Having joined up to multiple gyms over the years, I can truly say, hand on heart, that this should be a priority on your list during your weightlifting workouts. It may seem fine taking that 30 minute drive to that fancy gym in the city centre and having a great time while doing so. But this will be quickly spoiled by the following.

  • Evening Rush hour (30 minutes turns into 1 hour)
  • Feeling completely drained from your workout ( 2 out of 3 times a week I would find myself unable to drive home properly after a workout. Lucky for me, my gym was close by).

More importantly, you will not stick to your weightlifting routine. I’d say give it a month or so and you will quit.

Instead go for the less classy but local gym over the jazzed up yet long distance gym.

Speed Up Meetings

I’ve been in loads of meetings in my time and it amazes me how often people can over run on time. If you want to speed things up and save those precious minutes of your day, then try taking all of the chairs out of the room.

Like magic, people will stop talking crap and start making real decisions.

Build Great Abs Fast – Use a medicine ball.

Cap Barbell Medicine Ball, 10 Lbs, Free Shipping!

I have previously shown you ways that you can build rock hard abs and as in little time as 6 weeks. (Hard work and dedication – no short cuts). But I also do approve of using equipment that will help you develop those abs a lot quicker.

In this case you will recruit the medicine ball (The medicine ball weightlifting routine is coming soon).

Be the ruler of your inbox

I have a notorious habit of living in my inbox, whether it’s on my laptop or mobile on the iPhone. But luckily for me, I have no choice but to make better use of my 24-hr time frame that we call ‘a day’. After all, how else am I going to maintain my muscles and keep assisting you at the same time? 😉

Anyhow, you can follow the tips that I follow daily to ensure that most of your day is spent outbox rather than ‘in’

1. Sign off your messages with “No reply needed” to avoid reply messages such as “Great!” and “Wow!”

2. When making a request, finish with “Thanks in advance” to prevent the “Thanks/You’re welcome” loop.

3. When responding to a request, end with a ‘conclusive’ statement like, “I Hope that helped.” Close the deal!

4. Use “FYI” in the subject line to specify that the message is solely informative.

5. Don’t write a statement phrased as a question,


“Mark and Sarah did a great job, didn’t they?”

This will only spur extra conversation, probably lead into another topic of discussion and that same email may circle around your inbox for days. Again, close the deal!

6. When you receive a CC message and must reply, send your response only to the sender instead of to everybody. Use BCC instead of CC as often as possible. Just like no.5, doing so may keep that email alive for days after.

Maximize your morning burst

I’ve been putting this in to practice quite a lot in recent years and I have become a big fan doing so since. The morning time is when you have the most energy in the day and when you will be most productive. So you will want to do your ‘top-quality’ work at this time. Do it before browsing the web and checking emails and be ruthless to anyone who tries to interrupt and get in your way!

Monitor Your Online Time


Because the internet still has a way of making you waste hours online, when you can be doing something much more productive. Download and start using the web browser ‘Firefox’ and when you do, go to and install the browser plugin that it provides. This will give you a summary of the amount of time that you spend on specific sites. Notice any bad habit browsing trends? Then be quick to cut those websites loose.

Use a M.A.P

But not just any old M.A.P or ‘to-do’ software. This map is physical and interactive,,, and will be drawn out by you.

Draw the letters M, A, and P on a piece of paper. Draw one for the morning and one for the afternoon.

  • M stands for the task you must do before lunch (or the end of the day), no excuses! You will not allow yourself to do anything else until you reach that goal.
  • A is your advanced goal—work on a project that’s due further down the road.
  • P is a premium task, something that isn’t a priority but would be great to be getting on with. A and P are things you do today that will further your success tomorrow.

Get straight to the point

Stand up when you speak on the phone. Doing so will prevent you from sitting back and relaxing, which tends to put you in ‘chill with a buddy’ mode which leads to talking crap.

Put up a ‘Do not disturb’ sign

I think we all have that one colleague that can chitter-chatter forever when they get going, or they just like to have a good old gossip. This is how you deal with them,

Say two nice things

1. Hey, nice to see you
2. Can’t talk right now

Put up the ‘Do not disturb’ sign. Literally!

I’m quite a fan of making my day more productive in any which way I can. And it’s true what people say… 24 hours really isn’t enough. Use the above as a starter to being more productive and you will be a happier bodybuilder because of it.

See you in the comments.

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