The #1 Muscle Building Mistake…

Ok, before I get into this blog post I’ve got a confession to make…

“The #1 Muscle Building Mistake” could cover A LOT of different factors;
from training – to nutrition – to mindset – to being consistent, etc…

But this particular blog is a guest post from IFBB Pro Bodybuilder Ben Pakulski and it covers a common TRAINING MISTAKE that you’ll see A LOT of people making in the gym that is literally preventing them from ever maximizing their gains…
(I hope you are NOT making this mistake!)


The #1 Training Mistake People Make In The Gym…

Well, we all know “the guy”in the gym that throws a ton of weight on the bar and moves it with terrible form and looks like hes going to hurt himself. He is the root of many of our jokes, and definitely gets a lot of sideways looks from the patrons of the gym.We’ve all asked ourselves “WHAT is he trying to do?” Chances are, he has no clue. He comes in the gym everyday and does the Exact Same Thing week in and week out because he really has NO IDEA what he is trying to do. Therein lies the problem!

Guess what, more likely than not, you have all been guilty of doing this too at some point in your life (whether you care to admit it or not).

The first thing you need to do is identify your desired goal. If your goal is to build muscle, then you have come to the right place and you should listen up.

The one and ONLY most important factor that you need to consider when it comes to your quest to build muscle, is TENSION. (more on that in a minute…)

We have all heard people speak about The “Mind-Muscle Connection”, or that you’ve got to really “squeeze” a muscle to make it grow. I don’t know about you, but for most people this is a really hard concept to figure out. Those of us that “get” what it means, still really have a difficult time putting it to action.

The good news is, this is quite a simple concept and I will show you how to apply it to building your muscles literally TWICE as fast.

Here is what you need to know:

Muscles communicate in terms of tension. They have absolutely NO idea how much weight you are lifting. They only know how much tension or torque is going through them.

What if I told you there was a way to perform more or less ANY exercise so that you could FEEL it EXACTLY where you are supposed to feel it, AND increase muscular tension with LESS weight to get results TWICE as fast in half the time. Sounds pretty cool, right?

YOU can control exactly how much tension or torque that goes through a muscle you are working at ANY point in the workout.

You have complete control over HOW HARD you squeeze, HOW LONG you work, and most importantly EXACTLY WHERE you squeeze and contract.

You can selectively train EXACTLY the muscle you are supposed to be and not train anything that you don’t want to be.

Every guy out there knows what I’m talking about. We’ve all done bench presses at some point or another and probably got more of a pump in our shoulders and triceps, but NO pump in the chest (which is the muscle we are trying to work!) Well not anymore…

I would like to take this moment to introduce to you the revolutionary muscle building technique called INTENTION!

The way I describe intention to people I encounter that are unfamiliar with it is this:

“Intention is the CONSCIOUS INTENT to create TENSION in the muscle”

I know, I know, sounds a little hokey. BUT the fact of the matter is that this is BY FAR the best way to ensure you are maintain tension on the working muscle.

The number one most highly correlated factor with building muscle is “TIME UNDER TENSION”. The longer you can keep tension directly on a muscle, the more you control the rate at which that muscle grows.

You can do a bench press all day long, and if there is not tension in the pecs, you WILL NOT build pecs. Why is it that some people can build great chests while bench pressing while others cant? Because some peoples “genetics” all them to thoughtlessly keep a greater amount of tension in that muscle!

We now have the ability to do this consciously. The best part is, IT’S EASY!!

INTENTION in action.

The most simple example of intention exists on the bench press. Grab on the bar in front of you, just like you would on a bench press. You can use any stable surface for this example. I will use the edge of my desk. I grab the edge of my desk about equally as wide as I would on a bench press. Hold on firmly, and without letting your hands move from that position, “shove” them toward each other. What happened? Your chest contracted didn’t it?

Now imagine doing this exact thing through a range of motion, like in a bench press.

WOW! You just created continuous tension in the EXACT muscle you wanted to! Pretty cool right!?

Well in my brand new MI40 Muscle Building Training System I go into great detail and cover specific techniques and tricks that will help you maximize tension and growth for all your major muscle groups.

If you’d like to get more information about this program and learn how to stimulate the most muscle growth from your workouts, just click on the link below:


Ben Pakulski's MI40 Muscle Building Program
Check it out for yourself now at: www.MI40MASS.com

About The Author

leehayward

Lee Hayward is a competitive bodybuilder and muscle building coach who has been online helping people build muscle, lose bodyfat, and get in shape since 1999. Lee was selected as one of the Top Fitness Trainers Online through YouTube's Next Trainer Program and his work has been featured in several international magazines such as: FLEX, Muscle Insider, Muscle Mag International, Testosterone, Ironmag, and Forbes.

15 Comments

  • Alex

    Reply Reply

    I tought the bench press was called a compound movement because it is supposed to work various joints and muscles including pecs, shoulders and tri’s.. there are better isolation exercises just for the pecs.. allways trying to keep good form and tension on the muscle you’re working on should be the basic endeavour of any bodybuilder tha’s just basic stuff.. but you gotta keep overloading it with weight, while maintaining good form and feeling it on the target muscle.. working out with half the weight in order to “feel it better” might sound cool but i dont think it can have any great results.. just my 2 cents

      (Quote)  (Reply)

  • Lee Clark

    Reply Reply

    I’ve been reading the updates of these ‘intentions’ the last few weeks, and you’ve told us all tips of how to contract properly for mainly only chest. Don’t know about all you other guys but unlike the other 99%, I like to go hard on every single part of my body and walk away from meatheads who say “Wow, you’ve got a mean body, how much can you bench?” Why is it never, “how much can you squat/ deadlift/ overhead press/ clean and jerk/ row” etc..

    I know that giving out all the intention tips for every exercise wouldn’t earn this project very much money, but for all the guys like me out there, could you please advertise to us another intention for say, a deadlift and a pull up?

    Kind Regards

    Lee Clark

      (Quote)  (Reply)

  • harry

    Reply Reply

    Hi,
    I am 62 height 5′ 8″ and weight 72 kg, Asian living in the U.A.E . I workout 3 times a week usually early morning for an hour and half.

    The workout included 30 min cardio and one muscle group.

    After the workout i have my protein shake and breakfast of cereals. The lunch includes some protein and carbs. The dinner is very light.

    I still have some belly fat due to which the abs are not totally visible.

    My question is :
    1. How can you kick the metabolism into a higher gear to burn off some of the lower belly fat,

    2. I always tend to have a shoulder injury(rotor cuff) how to avoid this in this age?

    Thanking you in advance

    harry

      (Quote)  (Reply)

  • Tris

    Reply Reply

    @ Alex. yeah it’s a compound exercise but its primarily a chest exercise, you would not do it for shoulder exercise ay? .. I think it’s making great points, many times have i done chest press and my tri’s get a great pump and my chest, not as much. Even that squezing your hands towards each other, you can feel the tension. It really is about Time Under Tension. I also think he does not mean going super light, but a weight were you can try his techniques. I for one will be trying them!!

      (Quote)  (Reply)

  • Alex

    Reply Reply

    Tris, Hi Tris, i stated that there are much better exercises to isolate your chest.. you will never do a chest press with only your pecs (well you can but the weight will have to be so light you wont get any results from it) compounds are exactly that, and for this case i think the chest press is just a bad example to prove a theory..
    Believe me, i also agree that you should allways try to feel the muscle, isolate it as much as you can, allways use proper form, and “intention” to do so should allways be a focus when you workout.. taht is just basic stuff.
    I see people everyday gettin good results with this kind of lightweight, time under tension slow rep scheme.. the only diference between them and me is that they are on steroids and i’m not.
    One of the things that really makes my day is, as a natural bodybuilder, is to outlift the much bigger roid users in my gym.
    People these days like to buy programs that make it easy, 5 minute muscle, get 20 pounds in 20 days and stuff like that.. but deep down we all know that to get results you really have to struglle.. performance should be the main focus and the rest will follow..
    Lee did a video about the subject not long ago called “beat the machine”, you can watch that.

      (Quote)  (Reply)

  • Alex

    Reply Reply

    Here’s the link to the video :

      (Quote)  (Reply)

  • David

    Reply Reply

    Hey Lee, I love the blast your biceps program. I’m on phase 2, week 4. Question. Do you ever perform low reps of preacher curls,concentration curls, or barbell curls, outside of the program? I’m assuming you do high reps for a reason.
    Also, is there an alternative exercise you can recommend in place of the Low Pulley Cable Cross Over Curls exercise? Would resistance bands work?
    I’m glad I know of a legitimate bodybuilder that takes the time to answer questions. You’re one of the people who inspire me to get the most out of my workouts and make a difference in my physique. Thanks Lee!

      (Quote)  (Reply)

  • Lee Clark:
    I’ve been reading the updates of these ‘intentions’ the last few weeks, and you’ve told us all tips of how to contract properly for mainly only chest.Don’t know about all you other guys but unlike the other 99%, I like to go hard on every single part of my body and walk away from meatheads who say “Wow, you’ve got a mean body, how much can you bench?” Why is it never, “how much can you squat/ deadlift/ overhead press/ clean and jerk/ row” etc..

    I know that giving out all the intention tips for every exercise wouldn’t earn this project very much money, but for all the guys like me out there, could you please advertise to us another intention for say, a deadlift and a pull up?

    Kind Regards

    LeeClark

    The whole use of chest exercises and the bench press is just an example that pretty much everyone can relate to. But the same info applies for all major muscle groups. Ben covers unique moves and technique tips to help maximize growth in every body part in the MI40 program at: http://www.MI40MASS.com

      (Quote)  (Reply)

  • David:
    Hey Lee, I love the blast your biceps program. I’m on phase 2, week 4. Question. Do you ever perform low reps of preacher curls,concentration curls, or barbell curls, outside of the program? I’m assuming you do high reps for a reason.Also, is there an alternative exercise you can recommend in place of the Low Pulley Cable Cross Over Curls exercise? Would resistance bands work?I’m glad I know of a legitimate bodybuilder that takes the time to answer questions. You’re one of the people who inspire me to get the most out of my workouts and make a difference in my physique. Thanks Lee!

    I’ve done low rep bicep work from time to time. But it’s not the “ideal” way to train such a small muscle group. You’ll make better gains with using moderate weights and really feeling the muscles work as you perform the exercises. It’s best to save heavy low rep sets for big basic power moves, not bicep exercises. I’ve got a video that talks about this in more detail at:

      (Quote)  (Reply)

  • harry:
    Hi,
    I am 62 height 5′ 8″ and weight 72 kg, Asian living in the U.A.E . I workout 3 times a week usually early morning for an hour and half.

    The workout included 30 min cardio and one muscle group.

    After the workout i have my protein shake and breakfast of cereals. The lunch includes some protein and carbs. The dinner is very light.

    I still have some belly fat due to which the abs are not totally visible.

    My question is :
    1. How can you kick the metabolism into a higher gear to burn off some of the lower belly fat,

    2. I always tend to have a shoulder injury(rotor cuff) how to avoid this in this age?

    Thanking you in advance

    harry

    The number 1 tip I can give you is to do some form of physical exercise for at least 1 hour EVERY SINGLE DAY. The whole 3 day per week thing is ok for beginners who are just starting out. But if you really want to get lean you need to do something to burn fat and jack up your metabolism on a daily basis.

    Now this does NOT mean you have to lift weights everyday. But you should do some form of cardiovascular exercise everyday. It could be as simple as going for an hour long walk, doing cardio machines at the gym, going swimming, playing sports, riding bicycle, etc.

    Bottom line the more calories you burn, the leaner you are going to get. When I’m dieting for bodybuilding competitions I’ll do a minimum of 1 hour of cardio daily in addition to my weight training workouts.

      (Quote)  (Reply)

  • eric

    Reply Reply

    you talk a lot about how to get big biceps but i noticed in your pics with ben pakulski that your arms look pretty wimpy side by side, why is this? i want to fallow his program to get big.

      (Quote)  (Reply)

  • Wow Bang on Right to the point…really great motivating Article.

      (Quote)  (Reply)

  • Great read man!

    This is such a confusing topic and theory to really grasp a hold of but you made it pretty simple to understand. Ever since i finally figured out the mind muscle connection you’re talking about, strength and size have never been so easy to gain.

      (Quote)  (Reply)

  • Sam

    Reply Reply

    Hi, great article
    I have a question: Is it true that some bodybuilders are so big that they can’t even wipe their own ass? And that they continue to train to grow bigger in spite of this.
    If this is the case then I suggest a visit to the local psychiatrist would be beneficial.

      (Quote)  (Reply)

  • Love your work Lee. Between you and Paul Becker, you’re one of the most know it all people in the fitness industry

      (Quote)  (Reply)

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