What to Do When Body Parts Won’t Grow
I’ve been getting asked a lot of questions about how to grow lagging body parts such as your chest and shoulders. In this blog post I’m going to outline some very effective strategies you can use to force muscle growth in any lagging body parts you have. Read on if you want to build a well balanced, well proportioned physique…
There are 4 main strategies that you need to be using in no particular order: switching the order of your exercises, doing less volume, train a body part more frequently, using pre and post exhaust and using negatives. Below I have described each in more detail so you know exactly how to apply them in your training to break those annoying plateaus that are holding you back from reaching your true potential.
1. Switch the order of your exercises
We get into habits. Some good some bad. It’s no surprise that you’ve got a lagging chest if you’re always training it last in your workouts.
By prioritizing your weaker body parts first you’ll have A) more energy and B) more strength at the start of your workouts. More strength = more weight lifted = more muscle tension = more gains. Lovely jubbily.
It’s also very likely that your weaker body parts are the ones you don’t enjoy training. Am I right? Probably. I used to have lagging hamstrings because I hated doing hamstring curls. There was something about them that just made me cringe (probably because I had tight hamstrings from playing so much football over the years). If this is you then you’ve got to just suck it up and get it over and done with first in your workouts.
Hate doing deadlifts? Do them first. Hate doing calf raises? Go straight to the calf raise machine and get it done in the first 10 minutes of your workout when the pre workout caffeine has started to kick in. You’ll thank yourself for it afterwards when you’ve got the rest of your killer workout to look forward to.
2. Use negatives
Nothing forces muscle growth more than negatives. They’re like marmite. You either love em or hate em. But your body doesn’t care about your feelings, so you best start doing them if you want to get a well proportioned physique. Negatives place more tension on the muscle being trained. How does this work? Well basically what happens when you do negative reps is you control the lowering phase of the exercise. For example on barbell bicep curls you could lower the bar for a count of four seconds rather than lowering it straight away. By doing this you are controlling what’s known as the “eccentric contraction phase” where your muscle is lengthening. By slowing down this muscle lengthening phase you are providing additional muscle tension in addition to the concentric contraction phase where your muscle is shortening (when you’re lifting the barbell towards your biceps). Like I said above, more muscle tension means more muscle hypertrophy and size gains.
3. Train it more frequently
Nothing says “GROW!” more than training a body part more often. Going from bench pressing once per week to three times per week will set you straight. You’ll soon have a silver-back gorilla chest with this much frequency. By training a particular body part more often every week you are spiking a process called muscle protein synthesis more frequently. Muscle protein synthesis levels will remain elevated for a longer period of time throughout the week which means more muscle and strength gains. Awesome.
Just make sure that if you do start training your chest more frequently that you lower your training volume in each workout. For example, if you go from training chest once per week to three times per week you’ll need to make sure that you split up your total sets for the week across the three workouts. So rather than cram your 10 sets into one workout you should split it into 4, 3, 3 across three workouts (for example).
4. Use pre and post exhausts
Often overlooked and underrated. This technique is awesome for making sure your chest (for example) gets enough volume despite your shoulders and triceps taking over on bench press. How to do it? Do an isolation exercise first like cable flyes. This means you can get your volume done (sets and reps) for chest even though your shoulders and triceps start taking over when it comes to bench press.
This strategy is more like a safety net so you are extra sure that a particular body part, such as your chest, is getting enough volume in your workouts. By doing 3 sets on cable flyes before doing 3 sets on bench press, you can be safe in the knowledge that you’ve given your chest enough total workload in a workout.
Learning how to use these strategies means you’ll achieve a well proportioned physique.
Learning how to use these strategies within a training program ensures you’ll never fall short of your goals.
And I’ve got the best fitness program on the internet if you want to pack on muscle without encountering lagging body parts and, ultimately, zero results from your efforts.
The Spartan Program- completely tailored to your goal of building muscle whilst staying below 10% body fat (you won’t find this anywhere else online):
Dabbling won’t do anything.
And neither will going about it on your own.
You know what to do: