Bang For Your Buck Weight Training

January 18, 2014 by  
Filed under The Fitness Bug

I’ve been building muscle for 13 years now. In that time I’ve trained in about 10 – 15 gyms across the globe (Each gym experience being mostly the same, except a few special hot spots). And if there is one thing I notice every single time I worked out, it is the fact that most people are not training to their fitness goal advantage.

You may say…

But Shaun, how do YOU know what these peoples goals are. Why don’t you just mind your own business. You don’t know their history, their past errors, what they’re correcting, or whatever that persons business is.


What you stated there is something everyone in the gym should be doing.


(Unless they’re actually genuinely trying to help of course)

But what I am talking about here is a time period ‘after’ I have trained, naturally communicated and networked with these individuals. And over the years of doing so, I find that most of these people really are not training to their advantage. What tends to happen is that they start off correctly. You know… choose a upper body workout day, a lower body workout day and so on. But then they make the mistake of…


Thinking that doing more and spending more time in the gym will make them grow bigger and quicker. And then those same folks wonder why they look the same year after year (At those who are actually trying to look different and not just ‘maintain’).

What these individuals need to be introduced to is the concept of…

Bang For Your Buck Weight Training

What is Bang for your buck weight training?

The simple formula:

  • 1 x compound lift per workout (Mandatory – Something you MUST do)
  • 2 to 3 assistant weightlifting exercises (Variable)

No less, No more

If you stick to that plan (which you should!) your workout may seem slightly short, yes. But if performed with the utmost intensity, the time it takes to complete your workout will be the last thing you’ll be thinking about. Getting some good post workout nutrition and serious rest is what you’ll be thirsty for.

The common mistake

Let’s take chest day for example…

We know that the bench press exercise is the undisputed king of all chest related exercises. But some individuals feel the need to follow it up with FOUR exercises to assist.

Why so much?

I understand that it’s important to hit all angles of your chest, but doing THAT many exercises can and will work against you if your goal is to actually ‘grow’. Especially after that 30 day muscle building honeymoon period (If you are new to weight training) where you can pack on 14lbs of muscle or more. Because after that, the gains will indeed slow down. That’s just how the human body works ‘naturally’. If it didn’t we’d all look like this guy.

Can you imagine that. Masses of young to middle age hulk size folk walking the streets, terrifying ordinary civilians. The government wouldn’t allow that surely. With the penalty of growing to such a size being sent to war in the middle east, or some place. 😐

Any how, in all seriousness, the point is this…

You don’t need to perform as much as you ‘think’ you do

Bang for your buck workouts (as the title reads)

Performing exercises that will give you the best gains, instead of exercises that won’t!

Let’s take a 4 day split routine for example…


#1 Mandatory exercise = Deadlift

#2 Bang for your buck assistant exercises = Lunges, Full hanging leg raises


#1 Mandatory exercise = Military press

#2 Bang for your buck assistant exercises = Dips, Dumbbell rows, Shrugs


#1 Mandatory exercise = Squats

#2 Bang for your buck assistant exercises = Leg press, Leg curls


#1 Mandatory exercise = Bench press

#2 Bang for your buck assistant exercises = Pull ups (weight assisted with progression), Barbell rows

Each workout looks pretty basic… right?


If you focus on actually progressing over time with that same workout routine structure, with the utmost intensity, you will indeed feel ‘smashed’ after most workouts.

Now, there are obviously tons of exercises that you can perform out there. Each have their specific purpose. What you need to do is find your reason for performing them them. Not just to look cool, or feel good about yourself (Weird point that one is, but that’s the mindset the some people have when they workout).

My favorite weekly exercises at present are…

  • Weight assisted Dips/ Pull ups/ Chin ups
  • Barbell rows
  • Stiff leg deadlifts
  • Deadlifts

And I choose those particular exercises because I KNOW they are helping me.

  1. Strengthen the weaker areas of my body (Upper chest, build on my hard to gain naturally long arms)
  2. Compliment the said mandatory exercises, also known as the big four (Stiff leg deadlifts build lower back strength, which aids the big and powerful deadlift movement. Barbell rows assist with the bench press exercises).
  3. Build a balanced and symmetrical body (It’s very easy to mess this up if you start your weightlifting journey the incorrect way)
  4. BUILD MUSCLE (That’s what we’re all here to do. Those exercises will give me the best bang for my buck)

Some other good exercises include:

  • Smith machine military press (Good for those who find the military press to be a frightening and risky to perform exercise)
  • Dumbbell press (Incline/Decline)
  • Leg extensions/leg press
  • Deadlift performed on a smith machine

But again, be very clear as to why you need to perform them. If not, then don’t do them. Period!

Seriously, I’ve been guinea pigging it for several months now, met a ton of new people, and noticed some common mistakes amongst many. Let’s stop for a moment and look at this recent quote to myself from a fellow gym goer.

‘Shaun man, week after week…. it just looks like you keep growing, week after week. Seriously… is it genetics?’


And guess who that quote came from?

Individuals who:

  • Stay in the gym for 1 hour or more
  • Perform ENDLESS amount of exercises
  • And give ME a weird look when I arrive after and leave the gym before they do!

Go figure!!!!

Oh and don’t you worry. New progress pics are coming (Because I know that’s what you are wanting to see right now :). It’s ok, I’ve always been a great mind reader).

To conclude

When you hit the gym next, put a big X through the mistakes listed above (That’s if you’ve been making them. Most of you probably have).

Approach your workouts with a bang for your buck mindset. This will at least give you a good kick start until Stay-Fit Bug really takes you to the next level.

Bugs Out!

See you in the comments.


A tip for tall guys

Focus on building your quads, glutes and wings.

It is a lack of development in these muscle groups that make you look long and lanky (even if you are ripped to bits underneath your clothes) at certain angles. Building on these muscle groups will give you the much needed ‘3D effect’. Once you do… long and lanky no more. Big brutal sexy beast you will be.

Here’s a FREE video to watch, which describes
the type of muscle building diet plan to follow
to match with your bang for your buck weight
lifting plan.
CLICK HERE TO WATCH <===== Click here

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Do What Makes You Happy (Screw What ANYONE Else Thinks)

June 27, 2011 by  
Filed under The Fitness Bug

OK… It’s Rant time!!!!

Ok, Ok… it’s not really rant time. But it’s time to re-enforce the saying…

‘Screw what anyone else thinks’

What exactly am I on about? I’m not talking about what your friends, family, or whoever thinks about what you do in fitness. By now, they’ve realized you’re going to be an almighty fitbugger for life, while they rot in the pits of Hades. Dying fast twitch muscle fibers and the like.

What I am talking about however, is those gym rats that strike a conversation with you, just to drain energy from your positive successful muscle building and fitness self. Here’s what I mean…


‘Hey, man, do you mind if I jump in with the sets with you on bench press?’

‘Ya, sure dude’

‘Thanks man, I’m just getting back into the groove. I’ve been away from the gym for 18 months while suffering from an injury, so I’ll be starting light’

‘Sure, no problem’

‘So what are you lifting’

‘Well, right now, I do 1 x 5 reps, 1 x 5 reps, 1 x max reps progressive weight’

‘Ah ok, cool. But dude, you need to be doing more reps man, for your height you should be bigger’ <— Errr assumption (And dude is actually in no position to question anyone with his current physique)

‘Well, I like my size, and my goal is strength progression. Besides, I’m just ‘maintaining right now” <—Looks at physique again

‘Ok cool, but you need to be getting in more reps man, and what you currently bench for your height is not enough. How much can you squat? If you master the squat, your bench will increase’ <— Err, did you not hear the last sentence?

‘Yes, compound exercises can work hand in hand with each other. But right now, I’m cool with everything I have going on’ <— (Guy is still currently physically weaker and visually crap in comparison at this time)

Bench pressing commences, while the argument instigator continues to push less (The Irony).

Now, I’m pretty sure many of you have struck up conversations with individuals like these at some point or another. And I’m here to tell you, when this kind of conversation happens, screw what ANYONE else thinks, and do what makes YOU happy. In the above scenario, there was probably also an element of ‘hate’ in the air too. Think about it, someone who had previously had fitness success, who now has a failing body, speaking to someone who is on the ‘right’ side of having a uber fitness body and lifestyle. That’s classic hate mentality right there. Yes, we can’t all control the things that happen to us in life. Sometimes putting a halt on our efforts to stay fit. But being on the ‘downer’ is no excuse to try and draw away the positive energy from someone who is high on the fitness lifestyle.

I won’t talk much more about this, as I think I’ve made my point here. Just do me a favor and screw what anyone else thinks. The Fit Bug cannot be eradicated 😛


More Fitness lifestyle stuff over on the 4 Pillars to the fitness lifestyle

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