It doesn’t matter what your goals are for 2019.
Whether you are trying to lose 10 pounds of fat and gain 5 pounds of muscle, get shredded and cut, get a certain muscle group bigger, or anything else, it is essential that you know The 4 Golden Keys.
The 4 Golden Keys are a set of keys everyone uses regardless of whether they are aware of them or not.
The keys are factors that apply to anyone who lifts, is trying to lose weight, runs, and workouts. Many of you reading this have different goals.
Some of you are here to get big, others are here to try to get a slim and cut physique, many are here to try to lose weight, a couple are aiming for god-like or goddess-like bodies, all are here to benefit their health, and some don’t know what they’re trying to achieve but they’re on a good path.
It doesn’t matter what goal you’re trying to achieve but by using the 4 golden keys as a guide, it will help you reach the outcome you desire!
Your goal and how you most effectively reach it is determined by the 4 golden keys:
1. Type of lifts you do
2. How often you workout
3. The amount and type of calories and nutrients you intake
4. The amount of calories you use in a day
BONUS: 5. The plan you follow
You can’t pick and choose which keys you use or follow because all will apply to you regardless of whether you pay attention to them or not.
Type of Lifts You Do
The type of lifts you do is the first golden key because it will determine how much muscle you CAN POTENTIALLY build or how much weight you lose.
The key word here is POTENTIAL because the other golden keys tie into each other, but I’ll explain that later.
The types of lifts you do will determine how quickly you reach your goal.
There are two types of lifts you can do when you walk into any gym. Compound lifts and isolation lifts. Compound exercises are defined as any exercises that utilize 2 or more joints. Isolation exercises/lifts usually only work one muscle group.
Which one will get you towards your goals faster?
Unless your goal is to get obese, be unhealthy, and die don’t follow this guide. It will do the exact opposite of those goals.
But if your goals are along the lines of getting big, losing weight, getting cut and toned, or maintaining muscle, doing compound lifts will put you on the fast track to achieving your goals.
The best type of lifts to build muscle, get stronger, burn calories, and engage the most muscles are compound lifts. As a rule of thumb, the more joints that are being used require more muscles to work to complete a lift.
The “main meat” of your workout should be composed of compound lifts because they are the most efficient way you can spend your valuable time in the gym.
As many other sources have defined it, they give you “the most bang for your buck”. The kind of compound lifts I’m talking about are the big three. Bench, squat, and deadlift. These three are some of the best lifts you can do! There are other great compound movements out there, but these three allow you to add a lot of weight than other compound movements.
Even if you’re not using a lot of weight you are still engaging multiple muscle groups at the same time! The only drawbacks for these exercises are they are hard, suck (for some people), and use a lot of your energy. But the benefits far outweigh the minor inconveniences that you temporarily must deal with during and shortly after you are done with them.
Isolation lifts are beneficial if you are trying to laser in on one muscle group. They are great lifts and exercises that you can do, and anyone will see benefits from doing them. BUT, if you have the choice of doing a compound lift or doing an isolation lift, choosing to do the compound lift will be more beneficial to your body unless your goal is to target that one area or muscle group.
I personally recommend doing compound lifts early in your routine (the 1st, 2nd, and maybe the 3rd and 4th lifts if you can handle it) and giving it all you’ve got then making the move to isolation exercises to target specific muscle groups.
By doing compound lifts consistently and finishing with isolation lifts you’ll have a GREATER POTENTIAL to build more muscle, burn more calories, and maintain the muscles you already have and reach your goals faster.
If you want to learn about lifts that are compound lifts read this article.
As with everything, you shouldn’t rely on a single source for all your information 🙂 Here are some links to some other articles from other websites that back up my claims.
How often you workout
This topic is a grey and controversial subject.
Now that we know you should be doing compound lifts, the next question to ask is how often. The key is balance. You don’t want to not be working out enough to meet your goals, but you also don’t want to be training too much.
A study (1) found that working out each muscle group twice a week is superior and will produce greater results than lifting the group once a week. It couldn’t determine whether lifting a muscle group 3 times a week resulted in greater gains than 2 times a week.
If you don’t know what a muscle group is, it is a group of muscles like the chest, back, shoulders, legs, abs, and arms.
A lot of guys lift 6-7 times per week! I mean if it works, it works, but from multiple articles, studies, and experience this is waaayyyy too much!
If you haven’t read the 5 key elements to getting a bigger chest I recommend reading it because it covers 5 elements that are essential to know when working out.
One of these elements is rest. Your body needs time to rest and recover each time you workout a muscle group. As a rule of thumb, you should be giving each muscle you work out 48 hours MINIMUM to rest.
If you need more than take more because you will do more harm by lifting than if you take a needed break and rest! Rest is essential because it lets your body reward you for your efforts by making your muscles bigger and stronger!
Rest is the period where your body gives you the gainz you have earned! Some other articles also found that working out 2-3 times a week allows your body enough time to rest and recover and resulted in the optimal frequency.
One article found that 4 times per week was fractionally better than 3 times a week. But 4 times a week is the MAXIMUM for how many times you should workout a week. 3 seems to be the magic number. I also read 4 other articles that came to similar conclusions about the frequency you work out.
So in order to reach your goals faster, you need to be working out each muscle group ideally twice a week (maybe 3, its yet to be determined), and be lifting 2-4 times a week.
This setup leans towards doing full body splits, upper lower splits, and push pull splits instead of targeting 1-2 muscle groups a day.
What you should focus on for your specific goals
If your goals are along the lines of getting
bigger or getting stronger it is important that you progressively overload and keep adding weight as you can do more each week!
This will lead to gaining more mass and strength over time and will burn more calories the more muscle mass you have!
If your goals are along the lines of getting toned, cutting, or slimming down then you don’t need to progressively overload. You need to maintain and lift the same amount of weight you always have or increase a little each week and FOCUS on your diet!
If your goal is to lose a lot of weight, then you need to be combining both of these concepts.
You need to be progressively overloading each week by upping the weight and you must also FOCUS on your diet!
(Bonus tip: DO NOT lift to long! I’ve found through experience and through other articles that lifting over an hour is too much! Keep your workouts around an hour for optimal benefits!)
I highly recommend reading these articles from other people in the fitness realm that talk about how frequently you should train. They provide a lot of great insights!
The amount and type of calories and nutrients you intake and the amount you use
I decided to group the last two golden keys together because they go together like peanut butter and jelly. Anyways….
Imagine being a part of a road crew working on a highway on a hot summer day. You’re out working all day, sweating, working hard, and at the mercy of the sun.
You’re wearing an orange vest; tar gets on your shoes as a new road is laid down and cars fly by on the other side of the median.
Your boss yells at you as you try to take shelter from the sun for a small moment. Ahhhh what a life. But finally, the day comes.
Except it only partly comes.
You don’t get the full amount of pay you worked for during the week! You’re angry, red in the face, and swinging arms at your boss as members of your road crew hold you back!
Your boss shrugs and walks the other way unfazed.
Working out is the exact same as this road crew story.
Remember when I talked about how the type of lift you are doing will can determine how much muscle you CAN POTENTIALLY build or how much weight you lose?
Well this is part two of that golden key.
Working out can be like that road crew example.
You’re working hard, sweating, and spending a good amount of time and effort at the gym each week. This determines how much “Pay” you can potentially get for that week or workout.
The part that determines how much “pay” you actually get is the type and amount of nutrients and calories you take in that repair the damage done! If you are wondering how this applies to losing weight, keep reading.
The amount of calories and type of nutrients you intake is just as important as working out to gain muscle.
Working out and lifting is where you earn the muscles, and your body gives you what you earned by fixing up your muscles and making them bigger and stronger. The thing is your body must have “the stuff” in order to build up your muscles and make them bigger and stronger.
Now your body needs a couple things in order to function and to “pay you”. Those essential items are
-Vitamins and Minerals.
It is vital that you are getting all the nutrients you need! For building muscle, losing weight, and getting toned and cut, it is vital that we focus on the amount of calories you intake and the type of calories you intake.
In order to build muscle, you must take in more calories than you burn.
Your body needs excess materials and supplies to build your house of iron. Therefore, you must give it enough materials and supplies and the right kinds.
The macronutrients: carbohydrates, protein, and fats are the wood, mortar, and nails of your body. In order to build muscle, you should be getting .5-.8 grams for every pound that you weigh each day!
You must also make sure your getting the right amount of carbohydrates and fats as well. The proportions for protein/carbs/fats are controversial and beyond the scope of this article. If you want to learn more check out these other articles and do your own research.
In order to lose weight, cut, or get toned you must burn more calories than you intake and be at a caloric deficit!
It’s as simple as that. If you are trying to get cut or toned or trying to maintain muscle you must make sure you have the right amounts of protein, carbohydrates, and fats!
If you are trying to lose weight, macronutrients are important, but you should mainly focus on the calories and the type of foods you.
Check out this article and do your own research to determine what your ratio and what types of foods you should be eating because it is beyond the scope of this article!
BONUS KEY: The plan you follow
In order to get where you’re going, you must have a plan. Imagine going on a road trip without any maps, phones, or GPS devices.
You would probably know the general direction you are supposed to go, and you could possibly get there on your own without a plan! On your route without any direction, you would take many wrong turns, have to backtrack, and have to stay at multiple run-down motels along your route.
Then again you may never reach your destination. You could get lost so far that you give up. Or maybe you never begin. There is a possibility you look at the daunting task ahead of you and decide to never begin your journey because it would be too hard to travel without a GPS, phone, or map!
BUT, this is where having a plan comes in! A plan you can follow and keep up with is like a map, gps, and phone you can use so you can get to your goal/destination the fastest way possible and reach it!
By applying yourself to a solid plan you have taken the first step towards achieving your goal! All it takes after that is consistency and discipline, and if you don’t feel like you have those two things you can gain it by taking the first step and beginning a plan then changing your daily habits!
The question is what plan?
I found some great plans that produce great results that you can follow!! Click the links below to get your plan for 2019!
In order to make 2019 your year, you must focus on the 4 golden keys. Remember to do compound lifts in each one of your workouts, workout 2-4 times a week, and to track your diet! Also Follow a solid plan and you will succeed in making 2019 your year!!
Since you’ve made it this far you might as well join Mr.Workout’s GAIN TRAIN! The Gain Train is free to join and sends out 1-2 workouts per month as well as updates when new and spicy content has been uploaded! Being on the Gain Train also lets YOU have a say on what content is uploaded! The question you should be asking now is why wouldn’t you join?