Women & Lean Muscle: A Guide

Women & Lean Muscle: A Guide

If you’re a woman looking to building some lean muscle but are new to the neighborhood, then let me be the first to welcome you! If you’re a veteran when it comes to throwing it down in muscle town but are looking for some new juicy tidbits to further perfect your bodily craft… then let me be your huckleberry for the next few paragraphs!

Firstly, let’s talk “fear” and “apprehension.” Are you fearful that the moment you start messing around with some weights you’re going to wake up one day having accidentally morphed into a gargantuan she-beast, ripping your pajamas at the seams with an insatiable bloodlust for steak? Does that make you apprehensive to starting a workout program beyond cardio components? Well then, it’s a good thing we’re here because I can 100%, beyond a shadow of a doubt, wholeheartedly, enthusiastically, and unequivocally assure you that will never happen.

Cue sigh of relief.

What you’re up against is your body’s natural chemistry impeding you from bulking up like an Oklahoma hay bailer without a LOT of a hard work. I mean… a lot. It can take months to see standard fitness progression let alone years for a complete muscular metamorphosis, and that’s with specified intensive training (i.e. definitely not accidental). That’s not even factoring in the nutritional component! You’d need to eat like an NFL linebacker every day to gain the kind of muscle mass you’re fearful of. I guess what I’m saying is muscle building in any capacity takes blood (flow), sweat, and tears (micro tears in your muscle fibers that improve themselves via the repairing process to be more specific). Never will you bulk up accidental. Ever.

Plus, I’ll be damned if I spent 4 years competitively body building in daily pursuit of size, strength, and more size with the effort of Atlas and the progress rate of your local government’s highway construction only to find out someone new to working out stumbled upon the Rosetta stone of muscular development with a few bicep curls and some anxiety…

… Kidding! You know, mostly.

What are the major ways women can build lean muscle?

Building efficient & functional lean muscle is going to require resistance training of some sort. To get technical, resistance training is any exercise that causes the muscles to contract against an external resistance with the expectation of increases in strength, tone, and/or endurance. Hence the intro. Henceforth these tips:

  1. Start Weight Lifting with Compound Movements – Compound exercises are multi-joint movements that work several muscles or muscle groups at one time. They tend to mimic every day movements while engaging most of your muscles. That means increased caloric burn, improved endurance/joint stability/balance, better functional strength, decrease your risk of injury, and overall improve all aspects of your health & fitness. The following are your best bets when it comes to checking out compound movements;
  • Squat
  • Lunges
  • Deadlift
  • Overhead Press
  • Push-Up
  • Pull-Up
  • Pull Down
  • Dips
  • Chest Press
  • Bicycle Crunches

Be sure to do your research on proper form! See how these can fit into your current schedule… or make a new schedule with these included!

  1. Incorporate Circuit Training – Circuit training is when you take multiple exercises and put them together back-to-back (to-back-to-back etc. depending on how many you include… the sky is the limit!). This methodology keeps your body from getting complacent in a routine while diversifying your movements. You can expect some fantastic heart health too when you incorporate some circuit training at least 1-2x a week. The best part? You can make a circuit with as many compound movements that your healthy heart desires feeding 2 birds with 1 seed on your fitness agenda!
  2. Incorporate HIIT Training as well! – HIIT, or “high intensity interval training” typical involves doing quicker, more cardio based movements for 30 seconds with 10 seconds of rest in between. This will not only help keep your body fat percentage down but will also target your fast twitch muscle fibers which are essential to muscle building. Lean and a machine, baby! The following are some primetime examples to crush, HIIT style;
  • Butt Kicks
  • High Knees
  • Jumping Jacks
  • Mountain Climbers
  • Burpees
  • Russian Twists
  • Jump Squats
  • Jump Lunges
  • Planks Jacks
  • Star Jumps
  • Flutter Kicks

Are there any habits or things women might be doing in the gym that are hurting their chances of building lean muscle mass?

  • Cardio Killer Queens – All too often women will jockey the elliptical, treadmill, or bike with little regard to much else. Although you’re working a major sweat and burning through calories like you’re trying to collect them all, it’s long term ineffectual. You’re not really enhancing anything once your body gets used to it. You burn the calories, you build a sweat, and that’s it. Don’t get me wrong, that’s not bad at all! However, if that’s all you’re doing then it’s time to expand your program. Instead of giving yourself long term benefits with a balanced program your keeping your goals shortsighted with little room for improvement beyond wherever you’re at now. 
  • Stretch! – If you’re constantly working your muscles via resistance you are simultaneously building tightness. It’s a natural byproduct of high intensity muscle flexion that can potential leaving you feeling like a ball of stress. Proper static stretching and foam rolling (SMR… look it up!) will balance you out and enhance that lean look you’re searching for. 
  • Do the Research – Have you ever REALLY wanted something and decided you’ll do whatever it takes to get it? Could be a job, a new piece of technology, running shoes, a midnight pizza… you know, the usual suspects. Anyways, that determination can tend to fall juuuust short when it comes to health & fitness goals for some women. Have you researched exercises and programs? Have you tried them? Have you talked to a professional about how to do them properly? Practiced proper form? Met with anyone that could help you? The lack of proactivity from individuals who are desperate to better themselves doesn’t fall on laziness the way one might think… it falls on self-sabotage. You skip out on the leg work because you’re fearful you’ll never achieve what you want since “it’s just not meant for you”. Or you’ll look silly trying. Or you’ll give-up halfway through “like usual.” You’re padding your crash landing so when that moment comes of you falling out of sky, you’ll have a nice, soft nest of inner voiced “I told you so” waiting for you at the bottom. It’s time to buck your personal trend and get after it. Do the diligence, try out everything you need, practice till it’s perfect, and never stop believing in yourself. Sometimes you’re all you’ve got and in cases like this it’s time to be your own best friend.

What are the best ways to eat for lean muscle?

Nutrition is integral to lean muscle building and quite honestly, we could be here all day on the topic. Since that’s not an option here are the simplified staples;

  • Keep Your Macros Balanced – Macronutrients are comprised of fats, proteins, and carbs. It’s a relatively simple approach to the complex nuances of the human body… but it works. If you can keep these 3 macros balanced in your daily nutrition then you’re on the right track with your foot fully on the pedal. Carbohydrates keep you fueled, energized, & sharp (as long as you don’t go overboard!). Proteins will keep your muscles satiated, repaired, and strong. Fats will lubricate your joints, better your brain, INCREASE your fat burn (when having the proper amounts of good omega fatty acids), and keep you satisfied. Leaving any of those out (unless on a specialized diet) will only set you up for failure in the long term.
  • Ditch the Booze – Wine, beer, hard alcohol; it all causes your body to react to it like a toxin. Effectively shutting down your body’s reparation on the work you put in at the gym and instead focuses on getting the alcohol out. “Luxury” functions take a backseat as your body just tries to reset to zero. Kudos to you if you’re well practiced enough to not feel the effects of long term, consistent alcohol intake anymore… but that just means you’re stunting your results big time.
  • Limit Your Sugar – This seems standard at this point but in case you haven’t heard sugar isn’t all that great for you… it’s not. Essentially every time you flood your body with a rush of sugar it spikes your insulin like a climbing roller coaster. While you experience a surge of short-lived energy your body’s fat burning switch turns all the way off. It stays that way even as you start to crash. All the while your hormones are going bonkers causing you to feel all sorts of terrible. Then that gremlin of sugar addiction gnaws away at you, yearning for a new fix since internally that insulin spike hits all the pleasure buttons in your body and it can’t WAIT to experience it again. Detox is hard… I recommend cold turkey. It’s sugar free and jam packed with protein that your body needs *rimshot*
  • Stay Hydrated – Another one that is par for the course but always a good reminder. Especially if this one tends to elude you. Without high quality h2O running through your system your cells can perform their jobs correctly. Your cells make up, um… every single bit of you. That should be motivation to throw in an extra glass of water here and there, right? … Right?

Rebel8

Rebel Holiday Survival – Registration Page!

 

Fitness Rebellion Presents:

REBEL XXXV – Holiday Survival!


Begins: October 21st (Monday)

Ends: December 30th (Monday)

Awards/Wrap Party: January 11th (Saturday)

Times: Every Monday @ 6:45pm & Wednesday @ 6pm

Location: Anytime Fitness (2885 Santa Rosa Ave.)

Cost: $225 (Payment plans not a problem! Additional costs for non-Anytime Fitness members)

– Twice-a-week indoor workouts
– Brand New Fit Test
– Group Step/Mileage Challenge
– Thanksgiving Football Game
– Group Donation Drives
– Nutrition Tracking with a Trainer
– Return of the “Challenge Soundtrack”
– Custom Shirt (handmade for you with your own personal design!)
– Themed workouts (including BLACKLIGHT, Time Warp, & “WTF”)
– Return of the “MVH, Unicorn, & Legend” Awards
… and more!

Check the video… THIS COULD BE YOU!

Time to sign up!

❤ Rebel8

Rebel Winter Rescue II – Let’s Make It Through the Holidays… Together!

 

IMG_1104The Premise

Looking for a fun way to stay fit and active this winter? Need some help fighting the “holi-daze” and all the frumpy weather, sluggish food, and cozy sweaters just begging you to hibernate until the 1st of the year? Hoping for some accountability so you’re not just left to your own devices while having every nutritional, stretching, exercise, and meditative tool at your disposal?

BAM! HERE IT IS!!

For 9 weeks we will rock this winter in true Rebel fashion; lots of hard work, lots of fun, and an endless supply of encouragement along the way. No measurements… No weekly weigh-ins… Simply a fit test at the beginning and end with a bunch of people just like you sticking together and diggin’ deep! All abilities, age ranges, experiences, and every other diverse situation you can possibly think of are welcome! NO REBEL LEFT BEHIND! Interested? Check out this video created during the 1st “Rebel Winter Rescue!”

Rebel Winter Rescue II:
Vital Info

There are 2 day/time options to choose from:

Monday @ 7pm/Wednesday @ 6pm
&
Tuesday @ 7pm/Thursday @ 6pm

The cost is $200 for Anytime Fitness Members, $275 for 1st time Rebel challenge participants who do NOT have a membership, and $375 for non-Anytime Fitness members who have done a rebel challenge before but choose to forgo getting a membership. A down payment of $100 is required by the start date but payment plans are available upon request!

If the above works for you then mark the following on your calendars:

Starts: October 27th (Monday)
Ends: January 3rd (Saturday… the ONLY Saturday we meet the entire challenge with a surprise in store)
Halloween Workout: October 29th/30th
Red, White, and Blue Workout: 10th/11th (in honor of Veteran’s Day)
3rd Annual Turkey Reb-Bowl Football Game: November 27th (Thursday… everyone welcome!!)
Black Friday Boot Camp w/ Special Guests: November 28th (Friday)

That’s not all but you’ll have to wait until the full schedule is released in a couple weeks to get the full scope of awesomeness this challenge will have in store (like additional themes, toy/clothes/food drives, and more!)

IMG_5908

Last Year’s crew of good lookin’ winter Rebels!

 Sign-up Now!

Simply fill out the quick and easy sign-up sheet below and you’re in! Once you’ve signed up you will be added to the mailing list so you will be kept updated with more info on this shindig as it comes out.

If you have any questions at all then feel free to CLICK HERE for all my contact info! I look forward to answering any questions you’ve got or simply touching base with you and puttin’ some gasoline on your inspirational fire… whatever you need!

AhhhhhOOOOO!!!!

– Rebel8

Rebel vs Rebel: Teams Announced

Warriors – Every Tuesday @ 6:30pm & Saturday @ 12pm

Lori DeMarco
Lori Lablue
Tammy Moratto
Maggie Schuck
Marco Avalos
Kathi Belcher-Tyler
Lori Knapp
Kayla Waldner
Stephanie Stevenson
Ruben Martinez
Pete Macias
May Lissa De La Serna
Carlo Piscitello
Marion
Chenoa Busic

Vigilantes – Every Wednesday @ 6:30pm & Saturday @ 10am

Cara Jones
Jisaela Tenney
Darlene Catania
David Moody
Kelly Moody
Lucy Avalos
Kelly Dawson
Justin Zuiderweg
Julia Wood
Sam Enos
Alaura Finger
Karen Solberg
Alyssa Solberg
Jody Livingston
Alyx J Livingston Seagull
Austin Finch
Karin Bowhall
Michelle D Huntley
Christin Douth
Suzanne Pelz
Tami Tuminello
Leah Bayly
Kristina Tovani
James Tovani
Kaila Finch

Rebel vs Rebel – Return of the Beast… Sign Up Now!

It’s Time to Begin…

 

CLICK HERE for boot camp dates and pricing details!

Fill out the form below if you’d like to reserve your spot 😉

Cropped Rats Edited Smaller

 

 

Don’t Be Fazed By the Holiday Haze

Operation: Fitter for Winter

Let’s beat the stresses this holiday season with family style fitness with a bunch of rambunctious rebels ready to recover from their turkey day coma, rock the sleigh bells, light those menorah candles with the wildfire in their eyes, and bring in the new year with the aspirations of maintaining a healthier person, not creating one from scratch.

Give yourself the gift of health this holiday season!

E-mail me at Alllevelstraining@gmail.com for more details 😉

– Rebel8

Party Time! Rebe11ion style!

It’s time to party again!

Well, it’s that time of challenge season… Time to get down and celebrate! A LOT of hard work and life changing realizations have come about this challenge, and it’s that fact that is going to make this wrap party one of the best we’ve ever had.

Nobody lays out the details better than the main proprietor of the end of challenge wrap parties… Bobbi Rivera! So, here is all you need to know:

Hey Rebels!

Since our end of challenge party is due to be celebrated the weekend before Turkey day, I think this would be the perfect theme.

Please join us in a day of thanks for all the awesomeness that is Rebel and celebrate with your other family 🙂

The details:

  • Saturday November 17th
  • 2:00 p.m.
  • Location: Lomitas School House (Santa Rosa)
  • Cost: $20 per person

[For those curious, the cost goes into spot and equipment rentals AS WELL AS the turkey, desserts, and drinks, which can all cost quite a bit unless teamwork is called. I just wanted to not only debrief you as to where the money goes but to also thank Bobbi for making something that could be MUCH more expensive, cheaper :). – Josh]

I think it would be amazing if everyone could please bring the side dish that your family loves most. Whatever is most requested at your thanksgiving table that you’d like to share.

I will be handling the turkey, desserts and drinks along with the details and I think this will be yet another fabulous day with my Hulksters.

We’ll have a keg (Thanks again to Tom Walton!) and wine and some other options.

Please message/text me, respond on the Rebe11ion page, or e-mail me (Aliveinaphoto@gmail.com) if you will be attending, also if you could please let me know if you’re bringing a guest or two (not only welcome, but hoped for!) and what side dish you’ll be bringing so we don’t end up with nothing but sweet potatoes and green bean casserole!

I will need full payment and RSVP’s by the end of October at the absolute latest so if there are any problems just let me know. Otherwise, I am super stoked to get this going!

Thanks!

– Bobbi Rivera

Behold our LAST “Rebel X Hillbilly Ho-down Wrap Party”

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Check out the slideshow chronicling “Rebel X” (#10)

Lastly, Click HERE for FULL breakdown of the Trinity Challenge (#9)

I can’t wait to celebrate with you all! Awards, slideshow, good food, great people… it doesn’t get much better. AhhhOOOO!!!

– Rebel8

I’m sorry to leave you Rebels…

The video explains what this little paragraph says but basically… I’m missing my first ever Rebel workout where I’ve had to get a sub. Thank you SO MUCH to Heather Muysken for helping keep the sweat flowing and barns burned. The actual reason I’m leaving is to tape an episode of the tv show “The Doctors.”

So, Team Dynamite… I made this video specifically for you. To let you know how I feel. I’m sorry! I even tried to have my flight arranged for like 10 so I could still do boot camp and THEN leave but it wasn’t a possibility. True story!

I look forward to hearing about how much butt you kicked when I get back!

– Rebel8

I Need 6 people I’ve never worked with before…

Hello eager reader! I’ve got some pretty big and exciting news! If you are interested in participating in a 6 week program starting November 1st that will not only provide amazing results for your body, but more importantly your mind then please read on!

Preface:

What I need are 6 motivated Anytime Fitness members who would like to take part in this program with me. You will take part in 2 workouts a week (each workout being 29 minutes) with myself as well as a virtual workout on Anytime Health. I will be teaching you the ins and outs of AnytimeHealth.com so you have the proper tools to keep track of nutrition, educate yourself on various topics from stretching to proper rest and recovery, and much more.

There is only one catch… I can’t ever have worked with you before. If I have ever done any sort of training with you, then you are disqualified from being able to participate (doesn’t mean I don’t have other classes and programs going on :)). The goal here is to be able to get feedback from a completely neutral standpoint with people unfamiliar with how I train. If that’s you OR you know somebody this would be really good for, pass the word on and/or let me know! E-mail AllLevelsTraining@gmail.com.

Basic Overview:

Meet & Greet: October 27th @ 12pm. This is where all 6 team members and myself meet up, get familiar with each other, and I provide you with an in person account of what you’re in for as I prep you for your first workout that starts 5 days from this point! 

Start Date: November 1st (Thursday @ 5:30pm)

End Date: December 15th (Saturday @ 12pm)

Workout times: Every Thursday @ 5:30pm and every Saturday @ 12pm for 29 minutes (virtual workout is something you can do on your own time OR you can plan to do it as a group… it will be your call!)

Cost: $180

Fun Details:

I will be creating a Facebook group for the 6 super stars who are able to sign on board. I will be providing shirts hand made by myself, as well as testing your fitness progressions in a fun and unique manner. The style of workout is going to be cardio and function based. I guess what I’m saying is that I’m going to keep your heart rate up, blood pumping, and body working the entire 29 minutes. These workouts are all about working smarter, not for duration. I didn’t go with “smarter, not harder” because you better believe you’re going to be working hard! That’s the beauty of it though… if it were easy, it wouldn’t be special!

We WILL be cutting through Thanksgiving and various holiday rituals, parties, and plans. This is a prime opportunity to rebel against all that with sweat and determination. I’ve got faith in you 😉

Once again, e-mail me at AllLevelsTraining@gmail.com and I will provide you with more details as they come! Let’s get it!

– Rebel8

PS if you don’t know anything about me or why I do what I do, please look watch this video that sums it up nicely: