Back To The Basics For Teens
By: Scott Duncan
Don’t get caught up in the training routine’s that the pros put out in the magazines, those will only lead to over-training. Remember these guys are on steroids and have all day just to lift, eat, and rest. They don’t have to go through 7 plus hours of school and all that other junk we have to do.
The routines they do are good for them, but may not be good for you. You have heard many times before, no two people are created equal, and this applies to bodybuilding also. So when it comes to training go back to the basic compound exercises and keep it simple.
It is very important to not neglect any muscle, especially your larger muscles, like legs and back. Those are two commonly neglected muscles, and the two muscles that if you get them big everything else will follow. You should base your routine around the compound exercises, these are exercises that involve multiple muscles to help move the weights.
For example bench, you are primarily working out your chest, but you are also getting help from your front delts and your triceps. I will list the main compound exercises for each primary muscle.
o Barbell Rows
o T-Bar Rows
o Squats-(king of all exercises)
o Straight Leg Deadlifts-(can be done with a slight bend)
o Leg Press
o Incline Bench Press- Barbell or Dumbbell
o Flat Bench Press- Barbell or Dumbbell
o Dips- lean more forward, to hit your chest more
– I don’t think declines are necessary, because flat bench and dips will hit your lower chest enough
o Military Press- Barbell or Dumbbell
o Push Press
o Close Grip Bench- hands should be spaced about 8-12 inches apart
o Skull Crushers/Lying Tricep Extensions
o Dips- with your body more upright
o Barbell Curls
o Incline Curls
o Preacher Curls
Those are the more basic exercises for each muscle which you should be able to do the most weight for also. I would recommend sticking to these exercises listed above or a variation of them. Don’t get too caught up in many cable and machine exercises.
Free weights Free weights are more superior in terms of gaining mass. Machines are more for isolation and you really don’t need those unless you are training to enter a contest or your physique is at the point to where you are satisfied or you are big enough to start worrying about “detailing” your physique.
I doubt many teens are at the point to where they need that. I know I am not even near that point.
You should also be keeping your sets and reps relatively low. If you don’t have the proper nutrition to feed your depleted muscles after being torn down by lifting, then doing many sets will just tear them down more and more and if you don’t have the proper nutrition they won’t repair properly and you will only be tearing them down worse. You won’t be gaining, you might be losing.
For your smaller body parts do about 6-8 sets, and for bigger body parts do about 9-12 sets. Keep your reps relatively low to gain some good size and strength, we are all looking to get bigger and stronger muscles. The so called “best” rep range is from about the 6-10 rep range, I think it is pretty true. Sometimes I will go for a heavy workout and train in the 4-6 rep range, but that is for variation, which I will speak of in a later article.
I hope this article helps you get a better understanding on what to do in the gym to continue growing. Keep it simple and keep it heavy, train within your limits. And have some patience.