As we bid farewell to August, we continue to bring you incredible gains here at The Ripped Report. Prepare for the most effective workout routines and top-notch expert-approved nutrition protocols to elevate your fitness.
Here's what you need to know:
15 Smith machine exercises that rival their free-weight counterparts.
The best natural testosterone boosters on the market.
Witness Nick Walker’s quad sweep as he gears up for the 2023 Olympia.
Mr. Smith Goes to Gainsville
The Smith machine may be the Rodney Dangerfield of gym equipment, but the truth is that it's a top-notch tool for gaining strength. Unlike dumbbells, the Smith machine allows you to load up on weight while providing better isolation of your muscles compared to a barbell.
Using a barbell requires more coordination and activates core and stabilizer muscles to control the movements. The Smith machine, on the other hand, eliminates those factors, providing a better focus on the targeted muscles. And don’t view the machine’s guided path as a bad thing — if anything, it makes it safer to handle heavier weights without a spotter.
While the barbell is better suited for certain movements, there are specific exercises where the Smith machine reigns supreme. Below, you’ll find 15 of the best Smith exercises, along with quick how-tos that make sure you’re performing them effectively.
Optimizing testosterone levels is key for enhancing muscle growth and reducing body fat. And while many turn to T-boosting supplements, it's important to note that not all of them are FDA-approved (nor are they easy on the wallet). But don't despair! You can help increase your testosterone levels naturally through dietary choices and lifestyle adjustments alone.
Certain micronutrients, such as magnesium, zinc, and vitamin D, are crucial in natural T production. By incorporating foods rich in these vital nutrients into your diet — and making other changes to your training frequency and exercise selection — you can reclaim the testosterone levels you had as a teenager.
The Mutant’s Leg Game
In the quest to claim the coveted Mr. Olympia title, the margin between the Sandow winner and the third-place finisher is razor-thin. That's why Nick "The Mutant" Walker is leaving no stone unturned in his pursuit of surpassing last year's bronze-medal performance. This year, he’s focusing even more on developing his leg muscles, particularly his quadriceps, in the three months leading up to the 2023 show.
Walker is diligently working on his "quad sweep," a technique where the quadriceps project elegantly from the hips and taper towards the knees. This strategically enhances the visual appeal of his quadriceps during a side pose, creating the illusion of greater size and definition to impress the judges.
To execute this quad sweep flawlessly, Walker is incorporating a variety of lower-body movements that target both his hamstrings and quadriceps, with a preference for machine-based exercises. Witness his intense leg workout as he aims to dethrone the reigning Mr. Olympia, Hadi Choopan.
Neutral Grip Hotel
The dumbbell bench press is an excellent unilateral chest exercise for pec development. But what if you feel shoulder pain? Consider trying the neutral grip dumbbell press.
Regarding protein shakes, organic whey protein stands out for its superior quality ingredients. Discover the top organic protein powders for 2023 to elevate your body composition to its full potential.
Bodybuilder Jason Lowe shares his carbohydrate-rich meals and cheat day. Get an inside look at the delectable foods he includes in his muscle-building diet, such as Rice Crisps, Frosted Flakes, and brownies.