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August 20th, 2010   
  Serious About Muscle Newsletter    WBB on Facebook    Follow on Twitter    WBB Forums

In this issue:

  • This Weeks Exclusive Article
  • It's Over Your Head by Mike Scialabba
  • Invert for More Back Activation: Rack Pulls By Brad Borland
  • Live From the Forums - Who's Talking About What & Quote of the Week
  This Weeks Exclusive Articles  

One of CrossFit’s Finest - An Interview with Chris Spealler

CrossFit is fast becoming a household name and is the training style of choice for many police departments, military personnel and just about anyone who wants to be in the best shape of their lives.

Chris Spealler is one of CrossFit’s finest and is a top competitor in the annual CrossFit Games with three top 10 finishes to his credit (to include 3rd at the 2010 Games!).

We get personal with Chris Spealler and delve deeper into the phenomenon that is CrossFit.

Read the full article here

Author: Chris Mason

  AtLarge Nutrition  

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  Mini Article 1  

It's Over Your Head

by Mike Scialabba

How much can you bench? Do you know? Well of course you do, it's the bench press for heaven's sake! Now do you know how much you can overhead press? If you do, you're a few steps ahead of the majority of weight lifters.

So much attention towards upper body strength gets pinned on the bench press, leaving the overhead press a mere shadow in the department of overall power.

Why is this a problem?

Two reasons: First, we move heavy objects over our heads possibly as frequently as we move them forward in our daily lives, and secondly the overhead press is an exceptional lift for developing strong, thick and stable shoulder girdles.

How to do it

Unfortunately a lot of lifters that are doing this lift, aren't completely doing it correctly. There are a few methods of overhead pressing, however here we'll just focus on the most basic.

The Standing Barbell Overhead Press

Stand with your feet in a solid base position, either right under your hips, or slightly outside the hips. Tuck your glutes underneath you bracing the core. Hold the barbell with your hands gripped right outside the shoulder. Hold the bar at the collar bone, with the wrists slightly back, and the elbows pushed underneath the load. Press the bar towards the ceiling and slightly 'behind' the head. Straighten the wrists as you move the load upward and fully lock out the elbows. You should be at a peak position with the biceps in mid-line with the ears.

Once you're fully locked out, drop the wrists back while lowering the load back down, allowing the elbows to move forward catching the load right back where you started.

If the movement causes pain, you may wanted to look into other variations of the overhead press, or move onto some rehab exercises to get your shoulders healthy again.

Always shoot for a full range of motion, and don't be afraid to let your legs help out a bit, converting the movement into a 'push/press'.

Now go unto the wilderness of the weight room, and press something over your big head!

Look, even hot chicks overhead press!


If you have any questions on this article, feel free to post them on the forums here: It's Over Your Head discussion thread


Mike is the Director and Owner of the Missoula Underground Strength Training Center located in Missoula, Montana. He’s an Expert Strength Coach and has been in the business for nearly a decade working with hundreds of individuals utilizing conventional and unconventional training methods. Be sure to check out his blog!

  Mini Article 2  

Invert for More Back Activation: Rack Pulls

by Brad Borland

Have you toiled away at rows and lat pulldowns for years with little to show for them but a sore lower back and underdeveloped lats? The inverted rack pull (sometimes known as rack chins) may be the secret to your back-building arsenal you have been searching for all these years. With a little set-up at your local gym or even at home, you can be on your way to a more effective method of developing your back.

Want proof? Recent research has found that the rack pull can activate the muscles of the back up to 60% more than the traditional barbell row! AND you save your lower back from strain and possible injury. Now, I am not suggesting you ditch all bent-over row movements from your current program, however, I will advise you include this move into your present routine. Additionally, you can perform this move at the beginning of your back day so you can lessen the strain on bent-over exercises later in the program.

The how to:

The best place to perform this move would be in a squat rack or Smith machine. Just be sure that the bar is locked into place securely.

1. Set the bar about waist-high in the rack. (As you gain strength and as the bar is lowered this move becomes increasingly more difficult).

2. Position yourself under the bar facing the ceiling. Grasp the bar about six or so inches wider than shoulder-width with an overhand grip.

3. With your heels on the floor and your body remaining in a straight line, pull your chest up to the bar just below your pec line. Pause and return to the start.

For the beginner, attempting these with the bar set high will be best. As you gain strength, lower the bar closer to the floor while maintaining a full range of motion. The next step would be to place your heels on a bench to add to the difficulty. And finally, by adding weight to your lap or stomach will turn this once scoffed at exercise into one heavy-duty back-builder!

3-5 sets of 8-15 reps should provide enough volume to add to your current routine.

Train smart.


If you have any questions on this article, feel free to post them on the forums here: Invert for More Back Activation: Rack Pulls discussion thread


Brad earned his Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Kinesiology from Southeastern Louisiana University and is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) with the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA). As a drug-free natural competitive bodybuilder Brad has trained, motivated and consulted with many clients from all aspects of life from the competitive bodybuilder and athlete to the elderly and rehabilitated. Having trained in commercial health clubs, wellness clinics, hospitals, university facilities and military installations he has also helped many with diets and eating habits as well as contest preparation.

Brad is also a member of the Air National Guard and proudly served in Afghanistan in 2003. However, upon coming home from Afghanistan he was diagnosed with Hodgkins Lymphoma (2004), an immune system cancer which his brother and father were survivors of prior. He went through 8 1/2 months of chemotherapy before a full recovery.

Brad currently writes for numerous magazines and websites on the subjects of training, nutrition, supplements, and motivation. His website is www.BradBorland.com

  Mini Article 3  

Live From the Forums - Who's Talking About What

Barbell Complexh

Perform complexes or circuits on your off days as interval training to increase your metabolism. If you are using them to increase general conditioning, add them at the end of your workout as a "finisher" utilizing movements that align with the body parts that you trained on that day.

Check out the discussion here - Barbell Complex

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Congrats to Tom Mutaffis

Congrats to Tom Mutaffis....... The newest ASC Light Weight PRO. Tom finished first at the North American Strongman (NAS) Platinum Plus contest in Denver. This earned Tom his pro card and an invitation to the lightweight pro nationals in September.

Check out the discussion here - Congrats to Tom Mutaffis

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Bikini Contest Prep

A carb cycle is not needed for a bikini competitor, and for the most part a figure competitor as well, unless they really have a hard time leaning out. Bikini competitors need to be tight but not too conditioned and this should not require carb cycling, low carb, etc.... just a balanced approach slightly below maintenance and adjust accordingly as you go.

Check out the discussion here - Bikini Contest Prep

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Calories in Fiber

Soluble fiber disperses in water and is generally considered to contribute to caloric intake. Insoluble fiber, on the other hand, doesn't dissolve in water; it's generally not considered to contribute to Caloric intake. Given your overall fiber intake a day is probably less than 20-30 grams, it doesn’t make sense to worry about it either way

Check out the discussion here - Calories in Fiber

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Weight Lifting Quotes

This thread has been hanging around for years. It’s still alive and full of inspirational quotes that will get you motivated for your next training session. Read the ones already posted and be sure to add one of your favorites to the list.

Check out the discussion here - Weight Lifting Quotes

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Turkey Meatloaf Recipe


- 1 pound ground turkey
- 3 egg whites
- 1/2 cup mango or tropical salsa
- 1/4 cup chopped red bell pepper
- 1/4 cup chopped yellow bell pepper
- 1/2 cup chopped onion
- 1/2 cup dry bread crumbs
- lemon pepper to taste

In a large bowl combine the turkey, egg, salsa, red bell pepper, yellow bell pepper, onion, bread crumbs and lemon pepper. Mix well with hands until blended then place mixture into a loaf pan.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and bake for 25 minutes.

- 1 pound ground turkey
- 3 egg whites
- 1/2 cup mango or tropical salsa
- 1/4 cup chopped red bell pepper
- 1/4 cup chopped yellow bell pepper
- 1/2 cup chopped onion
- 1/2 cup dry bread crumbs
- lemon pepper to taste

In a large bowl combine the turkey, egg, salsa, red bell pepper, yellow bell pepper, onion, bread crumbs and lemon pepper. Mix well with hands until blended then place mixture into a loaf pan./font>

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and bake for 25 minutes.

Check out the discussion here - Turkey Meatloaf Recipe

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Live From the Forums - Quote of the Week

“Cues are simply cues/tips to prod you closer to optimal technique. Cues are not dogma and not actual technique”Sensei

Check out the discussion here - Hip Drive in Squat

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