10 Essential Bodybuilding Tips | Dorian Yates’ Blood & Guts

10 Essential Bodybuilding Tips | Dorian Yates’ Blood & Guts


[music] So you got 4 workouts
covering the whole body over a 6-day period. Having said that,
you gotta be flexible. If you need an extra day for
recovery, then take an extra day so that’ll become 4 days over 7. Some people may need even more,
you gotta listen to your body. If you need more days to recover
then, you know, just extend that cycle into 7 days or 8
days or whatever you need. [music] Extra negatives are a
tool that you can use to increase the intensity. Basically, you got
three phases of strength. The weakest phase
is the positive or the lifting of the weight. That’s the weakest phase. The second phase of
strength is the static. You’re stronger on the static. And then the third
phase is the negative. Unfortunately, a lot of people
think in terms of just lifting weight so for instance,
a bench press, they lifted the
weight to the top. All right, job done and
just drop it back down and do another one. They’re missing half of the rep
and possibly the most important half of the rep because more
muscle damage occurs on the negative than on the positive
and it’s the damage to the muscle that the body repairs
that then becomes muscle growth. So you’re missing the most
important part of the rep if you don’t emphasize
that negative part. And even when you’ve gone to
failure on the positive part of the exercise, your muscle hasn’t
gone to true failure because there’s still strength
left in the negative. So that’s why I advise sometimes
doing additional negatives at the end of the set. If you’ve got a
training partner. If you’re on a machine and it’s
safe, for instance, you’re doing bench press on a machine, you
reach failure, you do a couple of forced reps, your
positive strength is depleted. You failed but you still got
something left in the negative so you can get somebody to raise
the weight to the top and lower it slowly down for a couple reps
until they can’t control it, that way, you’ve depleted every,
you know, every area of the rep. [music] In off season, a moderate
amount of cardio, I think, is good for your
cardiovascular conditioning. You need some decent amount
of cardio to recover between your sets. So 25, 30 minutes three times a
week, moderate cardio I think is good for some conditioning. It’s also good for recovery
from the workouts because it helps–you’re pushing blood
around the system, get rid of the waste products
from the weight workouts. I prefer to do them on days that
I’m not in the gym or if you, you know, if your schedule
doesn’t permit that and you have to do it on the days you weight
train, I would much prefer to do it away from the weight workout. I’ve known for years for my own
feedback that if you do cardio after weight training, it kind
of interferes with the recovery. The priority is recovering from
that workout and rebuilding the resources, so it’s much better
to do your cardio separately. And funnily enough, scientific
studies are coming out now and proving this if you do cardio
after weights, your strength gains are less than if you
did weights on their own. [music] I do a small amount of ab work but there’s no
additional weight. It’s just body weight,
short movements, crunches, reverse crunches, leg raises. Of course, if you wanted to get
thicker abdominals, you could use extra resistance but
most people don’t because aesthetically, you don’t want
to build too much muscle in the midsection ’cause
it spoils your shape. So just very controlled, short
movements, basically abdominals is just to bring these
two points together. So sit-ups and so on,
not in the most effective. I found just simple forward
crunches and reverse crunch where you bring your hips up
toward your chest and reversing that movement, that’s
pretty much all I needed. Sure, you can do once a week
when you’re in a mass cycle, but I wouldn’t recommend using extra
weights ’cause it’s gonna build thickness in the obliques
and it’s gonna, you know, it’s gonna spoil your symmetry. I do several sets, just
concentrating on the contraction and having more control,
especially when you go on stage, controlling the abdominals and
with the posing and everything, you need to be connected
with the muscle in order to control them. [music] There’s a debate,
what’s better, machines or free weights? Neither, you know. They’re both tools
that you can use. As long as you’re working the
muscle, you’re working it to failure, it doesn’t
particularly matter if it’s a machine or a free weight. There’s advantages
and disadvantages. The advantages with the
free weight, of course, we’re all built differently. We’re all different heights. We all got different lengths of
limbs, different attachments and everything where a machine
is just built in one way. A free weight, if you lift the
free weight and I lift the free weight, it will take a slightly
different pathway because our bodies are built differently
so that’s the advantage of a free weight. It works with the individual’s
body where a machine, you’re locked into a groove. The advantage of a machine is
that you can isolate the muscle without too much
outside involvement, especially if you got
injuries, they’re very useful and there’s more
control involved. So if you want to go extra
negatives and so on, of course, if you’re doing a free weight,
bench press is very awkward to do extra negatives at the end. You’d have to lift the weight
to the top and lower it down and it’s just not practical and
it’s not really safe, whereas a machine, you’re doing a machine
bench press, you can get your training partner to lift at the
top and you can control it and it’s safe. So there’s
advantages and disadvantages. I use both in my training. I use free weights. I use machines. You know, the main thing is as
long–it’s more like the effort that you’re putting in
rather than the tools that you’re using. [music] I’ve always worked with a
training partner just because working to failure,
it’s not practical. If you haven’t got a training
partner, you at least need a good spotter, somebody that
knows what they’re doing. If you’re, you know, if you’re
going to failure with a–on an incline press with a free
weight, for instance, if you go to failure and there’s nobody
there spotting you, it’s very dangerous so you can get stuck
with that weight on your chest. So you need a good training
partner or at least a spotter, you know, to assist you in those
exercises where it’s not safe and practical to do it
without a training partner. So, for me, they’re essential
but, of course, you know, you’ve gotta have a training
partner that has the same goals as yourself. I think that’s very important. [music] You know, I can
give guidelines, but obviously it varies
from one person to another depending on their metabolism. I usually start with a
protein recommendation. If somebody’s training hard and
they’re trying to build muscle and put on body weight, I would
recommend a ballpark like 1-1/2 grams of protein for
each pound of body weight. So if you weigh 200 pounds, for
instance, 300 grams of protein a day, that’s what you
should be aiming for. And your body can only utilize
so much protein at one time and it doesn’t stay in your system
for very long so that’s why I recommend eating–breaking that
protein requirement down into five or six small meals
throughout the day and that’s where a protein supplement
becomes very important. That’s something I’ve always
used since I’ve started training because to get, 300, 400 grams
of protein a day from solid food is very, very difficult and, you
know, if you’re working and so on, it’s not practical
to eat chicken breast every couple of hours. So a protein supplement
is very useful to get that requirement in. As far as an energy requirement,
carbohydrates, it’s gonna vary quite a bit from one
individual to another. So I can give you a, you know,
a guideline and basically if you’re putting on body fat with
that level, then you have to bring it down a little bit. If you’re not gaining weight, then you have to go
up a little bit. Whatever protein
level you’re taking, times that by 1-1/2 to 2. Three hundred grams of protein
a day becomes 450 to 600 grams of carbohydrate a day. That would be a good guideline. And again, break it up
throughout the day and keep good source of carbohydrates,
you know, fairly complex carbohydrates that are broken
down slowly, released into your bloodstream slowly so
you don’t get spikes of blood sugar and big drops. So we’re talking oatmeal,
brown rice, sweet potatoes, vegetables, things like that. You need fats in your diet. There was one time back when I
started training where it was just high protein, carbohydrates
and super low fat and I found with a little bit more fat in
my diet, definitely my strength went up and I got better gains. You know, you’re gonna
get dietary fat if you’re eating eggs. I wouldn’t just
eating egg whites, I would throw a few
egg yellows in there. If you take all
the yellows out, you’re taking some
of the aminos away. So let’s say you’re
having ten egg whites, I would say have at least
three yolks in there as well. You know, steak, you’re gonna
have natural fats in there and a couple of tablespoons a day
with omega fats mixed omega fats to make sure you’re getting
all the essential fats. Chicken breast, turkey breast. Beef is an excellent
source of protein. It’s just, you know, if it’s
very high in fat, obviously you don’t want that but you can
get–I used to get lean ground beef almost as chicken
breast and it’s a better and more complete
source of protein. So beef is a good
source as well. So eggs, chicken breast,
turkey breast, beef, fish is fine if you like it,
I’m not a big fan myself, then a protein supplement. Those are main sources. I used to train after two meals
so I’d have a big breakfast, you know, oatmeal, eggs and so
on, a couple hours later, I’d have a shake, a protein
shake, maybe a banana or a small amount
of carbohydrates. About an hour to an hour and
a half before I trained, 30 minutes before I trained,
I’d take a pre-workout kind of stimulant supplement. After training, I would
take a small amount of simple, quickly-digested protein like
a whey isolate along with some simple sugars, dextrose,
sucrose, it doesn’t matter as long as it’s simple sugar. Then you’re gonna get
that insulin reaction. The body’s gonna release
insulin and it’s gonna help push nutrients towards the muscles
that are depleted at that point and that’s a good time
to take, you know, extra glutamine, creatine. If you’re taking creatine,
that’s an excellent time to take it. You’re gonna absorb more
right after the workout with the simple sugars. [music] I got a lot of
experience with injuries. I had enough
injuries over the years. I’ve learned as I went along. I was a young guy when I
started, I got injuries and there’s really no–there
was no good advice around. I’d go to my M.D. and, of course, they don’t
know much about sports injuries. They just tell you to rest and
take some anti-inflammatories. If you’ve got an injury,
a small injury, it’s good to take care of it. You know, what happens if you’ve
got an injury, if you got a small tear in the muscle, your
body will repair that but it repairs it with scar tissue. Scar tissue is not flexible
like normal muscle tissue. It’s not elastic so if
you could think about like an elastic band. If you snapped an elastic band
and then stuck it together with glue, with a lump of glue, it
will be fixed but it will no longer be elastic and there’s a
good chance that that lump of glue, at some point,
is gonna snap again. So if you get a little injury, I
think deep tissue and massage is the best thing to do. And you get somebody in there
to break that scar tissue down, bring blood into the area and
trying to get the healthy tissue back there and do that before
it becomes a severe injury. That’s what I’ve
learned over the years. And, you know, regular
chiropractic is very helpful as well to keep
everything in balance. Don’t wait till
you’ve got an injury. If you’re putting a lot of
stress on your body, if you’re doing a lot of weight training,
I think it’s a good idea to have regular chiropractic care,
just maybe once a month, something like that. [music] I used to do strength
because I mean strength is a good indication. If you’re getting stronger,
you’re getting bigger and vice versa. So I would do body weight. I even used to do measurements
like measure my arms. The stuff might sound a bit
old, old school, but if you got various factors there, you can
see if they’re all increasing. So you could do a
couple of measurements. You could do your body
weight on the scales. You could do your
strength levels and see how that increases from month to month
and have a goal each month. Even if it’s, “This month, I’m
gonna put on 2 pounds,” if you did that every month at the
end of the year, it’s 24 pounds. It’s a huge gain. I don’t do pictures in off
season, but I did getting ready for a contest, every week,
getting ready for a contest so that way I could track
how my body was changing and actually helped me a lot. When I won the first Mr. Olympia
in 1992, I kept every week pictures and what I noticed was
like practically 5 or 6 weeks out from the contest, I was more
or less in contest shape and I kept coming down and losing
weight and losing weight. And it may have got a little
harder but what I realized is I was actually losing muscle. So the next year, I was
determined not to do that and I didn’t make that mistake and
that’s why I was able to make this huge increase from 1
year to the next, like 16 or 17 pounds of muscle from
1 year to the next. And everyone’s like,
“How is that possible?” Well, you know, I had a great
year of training so I probably did put on 5 or 6 pounds of
muscle, which at a pro level, that’s a great gain, but more
importantly, I didn’t sacrifice 10 pounds of muscle like I
sacrificed the previous year. So it’s really helped
the learning process. [music] Something that really
helped me over the years to keep motivated is keeping a journal
with nutrition, with training. What I used to do
is every month, write down where
I’m at presently. This is my body weight. This is my nutrition. These are my max weights or
eight reps on like ten key exercises, and then I would set
myself a short-term goal, which is like in 1 month’s
time, I want to do this. And it’s gotta be
an achievable goal. For instance, if you could just
add 5 pounds to your bench press in a month, if you could
do that every month, then that’s 60 pounds at
the end of the year. That’s a huge gain. So it’s important to have goals,
short-term goals, maybe monthly goals and maybe a long-term goal
at the end of the year and break it down into little steps. Instead of looking at, “The end of the year, I
want to achieve this,” how are you gonna get there? You gotta take small
steps to get there. So monthly goals and writing
them down I think it makes them more–much more powerful. What I would do before a
workout, I would look at my journal and I would keep a
record of every workout as well. After a workout, I would
write down, “This is what I did today,” you know, “incline
press, 200 times 8 reps,” and I would review that before I went
to do the workout the next week. “Okay, that’s what I did last
week and that’s my goal to beat this,” you know? “I did 8 reps with 200 or
whatever, this workout I’m gonna “do 9 reps or 10 reps or I’m
gonna do the same reps with 205,” just small increments
and get that goal in your mind. Know which exercises you’re
gonna do before you go to the gym, which order you’re gonna do
them in, what your goals are for those exercises, rather than
just wandering in a gym and thinking, “Oh, I’m doing
chest today, what shall I do? What do I feel
like doing today?” And having no clear goal. If you got no clear goal, you’re
very unlikely to get anywhere. [music]