“1 weird trick to lose belly fat while eating donuts everyday”
“1 unusual trick to build muscle while you sit on your butt”
“Unique berry burns belly fat and gets you ripped in a week”
The internet is littered with hypey-headlines.
I get it.
So in this article, I’m going to share the biggest mistake preventing you from building strength and muscle, 7 ways it can help you build a stronger, more athletic body.
Best of all, it’s completely free and you can implement right now.
Now there are a lot of things to pay attention to when you’re trying to get stronger and build a lean, athletic body. Things like:
Shorter rest intervals
“Money” movements (squat, press, deadlift, cleans, etc.)
While these are all CRUCIAL, I’m not talking about any of them.
The best thing is that this trick can be applied to any kind of exercise. Barbells. Kettle bells. Bodyweight exercises.
So what exactly is this tip?
Focusing on lifting explosively and lowering slowly. Focusing on the decline/lowering portion of the movement is called eccentric training.
What exactly is eccentric training?
Eccentric training, often referred to as eccentric loading, is the deliberate slowing down or deceleration of the eccentric phase of a muscle contraction. Rather than blowing through a rep using a typical two second count, eccentric training emphasizes using as long as four to five seconds during the eccentric phase of the contraction followed by an explosive burst in the concentric phase of the movement.
Most people lift weights as quickly as they can. The problem is that they rely on momentum, which minimizes the strength and muscle gains they could experience. When you use momentum, you minimize the tension on the target muscle, resulting in less overload. In other words, you’re not stimulating the muscle as much as you could.
So here are 7 ways that lifting explosively and lowering the weights slowly helps you build more muscle and get stronger.
#1 Increased Explosive Power
Power is defined as the amount of energy output in a certain amount of time. Eccentric training emphasizes controlled muscular explosiveness and many athletes can testify to this. Whether one is performing squats, deadlifts, bench press or pulls ups utilizing eccentric loading principles, eccentric training helps with the development of neural drive. This is an important factor in conditioning the neuro-muscular system to produce explosive power.
#2 New Muscle Growth
Because eccentric training emphasizes the deliberate deceleration of weight, the intensity of the exercise introduces the targeted muscle group to a different stimulus. As a result, the targeted muscle group will need to adapt, leading to hypertrophy i.e. muscle growth.
#3 Higher Anabolic Hormonal Output
When the body is introduced to a new level of stimulus and stress, the body’s natural reaction is to release high amounts of anabolic hormones such as testosterone, human growth hormone (HGH) and insulin growth-like factor (IGF-1). These hormones, activated by the neuro-endocrine system, play a role in increasing lean muscle mass, bone density and getting rid of excess body fat.
#4 Increased Metabolism
Eccentric training is more intense, causing your muscles to adapt and grow. When this happens, new muscle increases your metabolism leading to long-term changes in body composition. In other words, eccentric training, especially paired with the right diet will help scorch body fat while simultaneously preserving muscle by adding more intensity to your training, WITHOUT adding more weight, frequency, or volume to your lifting regimen.
#5 Increased Muscular Endurance
During the eccentric phase of the contraction, the muscle group has to endure greater stress leading to the muscle fibers in that targeted group to develop more oxidative capacity. This will allow you to burn through your current muscular endurance threshold and give you a greater ability to larger amounts of resistance training in shorter amounts of time. Also, since you’re focusing on the movement, you can pay particular attention to proper form, reducing the chance of injury.
#6 Muscle Preservation During Dieting
During a cutting phase of a diet, people either lose muscle, or are afraid of losing muscle, due to the restriction calories and carbohydrates. However, studies have shown that engaging in highly intense eccentric loading exercise, anabolic hormones such as testosterone, HGH and IGF-1 help preserve muscle mass, even during caloric restriction.
Bottom line, eccentric training helps preserve your gains.
#7 Enhanced Overall Athletic Performance
Regardless if you are a professional athlete or an avid gym goer, trainees see remarkable changes in their overall strength, speed, explosiveness and power with eccentric training. Eccentric training helps athletes and athletic individuals improve their vertical reach, punching power, throws, or any other athletic movement .
If you are wondering how to exactly incorporate eccentric loading into your weightlifting program, start by increasing the time you spend on the eccentric phase on all of your major lifts, i.e. squats, presses, deadlifts, etc. As mentioned earlier, rather than only take one or two seconds to lower the weight, increase your eccentric count or tempo to a minimum of at least four to five seconds.
About the Author
Raza runs the blog www.TheScienceofGettingRipped.com and is a father of two with a busy IT job at a Chicago hospital. He’s created a free report just for other busy guys like him called “The #1 ‘Dessert’ Food for Busy Guys to Build Muscle & Get Lean and Ripped”.Grab this awesome report by clicking here
Photo credits: Arno Photography, Ludwig Araujo, MoveStories.com