First off, we should give you a disclaimer; this article is not attempting to make you look like Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. We assume few women want to possess his boulder shoulders and matching shaved head. This article’s goal is instead to take the finer points of The Rock’s training and diet and allow you to apply them to your own routine. Dwayne is a smart guy, and his methods definitely get results.
What many women don’t understand is that by “training like a man,” they will look more and more like a women. Allow us to explain. Men and women look different because they have different levels of their respective sex hormones; testosterone and estrogen.
This is why when an individual goes through a sex change—say from female to male—they will inject testosterone to give them the manly qualities they so desire.
Unless a women injects testosterone, “training like a man” will not make her look manly. Women’s bodys are lacking in testosterone, so they don’t have to worry about “getting too big.”
Training with heavy weight in a progressive and aggressive manner is optimal training for EVERYONE, regardless of your gender. Sure, a woman’s recovery time may be longer than a man’s, but this is again because women lack the testosterone of the less fair sex.
Heavy squats, deadlifts, presses and pull-ups will always bring about the most gains in both fat loss and muscle. For women, this muscle gain will be limited (not enough testosterone), and they will simply become more curvy and figured.
Which, unless your dream bod is looking like a spaghetti noodle, is exactly what you want. Doing curls with 10lb dumb bells and endless amounts of crunches will get you nowhere. Don’t be afraid to train hard and heavy!
1. Go Compound Or Go Home
Compound exercises, such as the squats, deadlifts and pull-ups alluded to above, are the most effective exercises in the gym. They stimulate the most amount of muscle, while burning far more calories than your endless bicycle crunch sessions. This is exactly why The Rock can always be seen lifting heavy weights and using compound exercises.
Squats and deadlifts are also extremely effective for shaping the glutes and legs, and if done correctly, will definitely have heads turning.
Train compound exercises in the moderate to heavy rep range, say four to six reps, as this gives you a mixture of strength and size as well as still having enough reps to stimulate your metabolism. There is no real need to go heavier than this, as it will only increase your maximal strength and your chances of injury.
2. Diet the Way That Works For YOU
The Rock, for example, eats extremely clean for months at a time and only then has massive cheat meals. This is not exactly the healthiest approach, as it supports binge eating. However, it is clear it works for The Rock.
The key to a successful diet is to find a method that makes you happy and allows you to stay on track for the maximum amount of time. For most people, this the if-it-fits-your-macros, or the IIFYM approach. IIFYM allows you to “cheat” everyday, or even every meal, in a sustainable way as long as it fits into your macronutrient requirements and calories for the day.
3. Don’t Just Be Fit; Be Functional
Ever wonder how people pull their hamstrings, tear their ACL or throw out their backs doing normal, mundane tasks? These injuries happen because the majority of people stick to very short ranges of motion and ignore others entirely when training.
Imagine the only leg exercise you did was the squat. By doing so, you’re conditioning your body to move in the vertical plane of motion, and therefore strengthening that section. Now imagine trying to change directions quickly during a basketball game.
It wouldn’t go over very well as your body is not used to using those muscles, and they have most likely atrophied. This is how you end up tearing an ACL during a simple basketball game.
The Rock, unlike our unfortunate basketball player, trains in all the different planes of motion, and often explosively. Exercises like sled drags, weighted and unweighted jumps, sprints and lunges all transfer over very well into the real world, as well as making you look better naked. So take heed and include them!
4. Do Cardio!
The Rock, despite weighing around 250lbs, still gets his cardio in every morning. Why? Because he understands the importance of blood flow for recovery, and how key it is to have a strong, healthy heart. Lifting weights alone can get you in great shape, but leaving out a cardio component is just plain stupid. The heart is easily the most important muscle in your body, and ignoring it is a recipe for issues later on in life.
Besides keeping your ticker ticking, cardio, specifically long-duration, low-intensity cardio such as walks, aids in your recovery as it increases blood flow to your damaged muscles. Higher intensity cardio, such as sprint intervals, can also be great for keeping your heart healthy while at the same time keeping you athletic and your metabolism burning strong.
Plus, they can take as little as 10 minutes, giving you no excuse to skip them! So get out there, and get hustling!
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