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2024 Lenda Murray Atlanta Pro Bodybuilding Results

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Here are the full results from the 2024 Lenda Murray Atlanta Pro!

The 2024 Lenda Murray Pro took place over the weekend in Atlanta with action wrapping up on Sunday afternoon. There was a total of five divisions that took the stage with winners earning a spot in the 2024 Olympia.

The full results from the show have been announced. Below, check out the full breakdown, along with an official scorecard. 

2024 Lenda Murray Atlanta Pro: All Division Winners

  • Classic Physique: Bjay Carswell
  • Women’s Bodybuilding: Michaela Aycock
  • Figure: Cherish Richardson
  • Bikini: Jasmine Gonzalez
  • Women’s Physique: Ana Harias

2024 Lenda Murray Atlanta Pro Breakdown

Classic Physique

  • First Place – Bjay Carswell
  • Second Place – Jarek Crew
  • Third Place – Eddie Lusk
  • Fourth Place – Anthony Barbera III
  • Fifth Place – Terrence Bonds
  • Sixth Place – Lenny Wicks
  • Seventh Place – Brad Killion
  • Eighth Place – Andrew Wilson
  • Ninth Place – Damion Ricketts
  • Tenth Place – Jared Keys

 

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Women’s Bodybuilding

  • First Place – Michaela Aycock
  • Second Place – Selyka Givan
  • Third Place – Sheena Ohlig
  • Fourth Place – Patti Hanson
  • Fifth Place – Victoria Dominguez
  • Sixth Place – Tina Chandler
  • Seventh Place – Kyna Squarey
  • Eighth Place – Towanda Smith

Figure

  • First Place – Cherish Richardson
  • Second Place – Kristen McGregor
  • Third Place – Zulfiya Bitiyeva
  • Fourth Place – Courtney Jacobs
  • Fifth Place – Stacey Steiner
  • Sixth Place – Sarah Van Heiden
  • Seventh Place – Camila Lyra
  • Eighth Place – Caroline Leticia Zawadzki
  • Ninth Place – Aksana Yukhno
  • Tenth Place – Madam Lavoe

 

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Bikini

  • First Place – Jasmine Gonzalez
  • Second Place – Ashley Hampton
  • Third Place – Mahsa Akbarimehr
  • Fourth Place – Tamekia Carter
  • Fifth Place – Rhoda Allie
  • Sixth Place – Lizzie Martinez
  • Seventh Place – Elisangela Angell
  • Eighth Place – Noelle Agnew
  • Ninth Place – Judith Ceballos
  • Tenth Place – Kiki Cunningham

Women’s Physique

  • First Place – Ana Harias
  • Second Place – Amanda Machado
  • Third Place – Lenka Ferencukova
  • Fourth Place – Autumn Swansen
  • Fifth Place – Romana Skotzen
  • Sixth Place – Winsome White
  • Seventh Place – Marie-Solange Essoh
  • Eighth Place – Joanna Romano
  • Ninth Place – Oksana Piari
  • Tenth Place – Jessica Coleman

2024 Lenda Murray Atlanta Pro Official Scorecards

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2024 Republic of Texas Pro Bodybuilding Results

Here are the full results from the 2024 Republic of Texas Pro!

The 2024 Republic of Texas Pro took place on Saturday in Austin with three divisions taking the stage for action. In the end, winners would punch their tickets to the 2024 Olympia.

The full results from the show have been announced. Below, check out the full breakdown, along with an official scorecard. 

2024 Republic of Texas Pro: All Division Winners

  • Men’s Physique: Abisai Pietersz
  • Bikini: Ashlyn Little
  • Wellness: Jenna De Manincor

2024 Republic of Texas Pro Breakdown

Men’s Physique

  • First Place – Abisai Pietersz
  • Second Place – Deke Walker
  • Third Place – Dmytro Horobets
  • Fourth Place – Charles Carter
  • Fifth Place – Tan Dhaliwal
  • Sixth Place – Fabian Feber
  • Seventh Place – Jared Stroman
  • Eighth Place – Adnane Benkhaled
  • Ninth Place – Brian Taylor
  • Tenth Place – Karim Hawash

 

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Bikini

  • First Place – Ashlyn Little
  • Second Place – Reyna Perez Mecalco
  • Third Place – Jordan Fisher
  • Fourth Place – Lawna Dunbar
  • Fifth Place – Gavi Soni
  • Sixth Place – Langsha He
  • Seventh Place – Cejay Banuelos
  • Eighth Place – Rebecca Ianno
  • Ninth Place – Emily Pribula
  • Tenth Place – Erin Mayrhofer

 

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Wellness

  • First Place – Jenna De Manincor
  • Second Place – Grecia Hernandez
  • Third Place – Sunny Andrews
  • Fourth Place – Kelly Spaghetti
  • Fifth Place – Thais Cappelli
  • Sixth Place – Alejandra La Fonseca
  • Seventh Place – Jessica Alvarado
  • Eighth Place – Kathrine Mclaurin
  • Ninth Place – Mariana Quintero

 

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2024 Republic of Texas Pro Official Scorecards

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2024 Zhanna Rotar Classic Pro Bodybuilding Results

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Ericka Morgan wins the 2024 Zhanna Rotar Classic Pro!

The 2024 Zhanna Morgan Classic Pro took place on Saturday in Anaheim. The Figure division was on display with the winner earning a spot in the 2024 Olympia. In the end, it was Ericka Morgan who reigned supreme and punched her ticket to the biggest show of the year.

Morgan will make her debut on the biggest stage in the sport this year. She finished as the runner-up during the 2024 Charlotte Pro and now has her qualification for the Olympia. Last year, she finished in the top three during the New York Pro and Texas State Pro.

The full results from the show have been announced. Below, check out the full breakdown, along with an official scorecard. 

2024 Zhanna Rotar Classic Pro Breakdown

Figure

  • First Place – Ericka Morgan
  • Second Place – Gabriela Consolmagno
  • Third Place – Gabriela Cadena
  • Fourth Place – Osiris Trumpe
  • Fifth Place – Daniella Means
  • Sixth Place – Bailey Gutierrez
  • Seventh Place – Jessica Baltazar
  • Eighth Place – Amanda Winston
  • Ninth Place – Karen Vitor
  • Tenth Place – Alexandria Cochran

2024 Zhanna Rotar Classic Pro Official Scorecard

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Inno Gut Protect vs. Ozempic: A Review of Inno Supps’ GLP-1 Boosting Postbiotic for Weight Management

inno gut vs ozempic

What is the best weight loss supplement?

When it comes to shedding body fat and overall losing weight, not everyone has the best of luck with diet and standard fat burners. That being said, there is a rising demand for effective weight loss solutions, and Inno Supps’ Inno Gut Protect, a GLP-1 boosting postbiotic, and Ozempic have emerged as popular options. Both promise significant weight loss results but achieve this through different mechanisms. But which comes out on top in the battle of Inno Gut Protect vs. Ozempic?

Let’s look into the features, benefits, and differences of Inno Gut Protect and Ozempic, helping you decide which might be the best option for you.

Understanding the Need for Weight Loss Supplements

The Obesity Epidemic

Obesity is a major health concern worldwide, contributing to numerous chronic diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and certain cancers. The modern lifestyle, characterized by poor dietary habits and physical inactivity, has exacerbated this issue. Traditional weight loss methods, including diet and exercise, though effective, often require significant time and dedication, which many find challenging.

The Role of Weight Loss Supplements

Weight loss supplements have emerged as a popular solution for individuals seeking quicker and more manageable ways to shed pounds. These supplements can complement traditional weight loss methods by enhancing metabolism, suppressing appetite, or improving gut health. However, the efficacy and safety of these supplements can vary significantly, making it crucial to choose wisely.

inno gut protect vs. ozempicWhat is Inno Gut Protect?

When it comes to weight loss, Inno Gut Protect could be the supplement that you need! Check it out. 

Inno Supps’ Inno Gut Protect is a supplement designed to naturally enhance GLP-1 production, promoting feelings of fullness and aiding weight loss. With it’s unique postbiotic and probiotic blend it focuses on improving gut health, digestion, and mood, offering a holistic approach to weight management.

Key Benefits

  • Promote Feelings of Fullness: By naturally increasing GLP-1 levels, Inno Gut Protect helps reduce appetite and promote satiety.
  • Relieve Bloating and Constipation: The probiotic blend helps alleviate common digestive issues.
  • Enhance Weight Loss: The combination of butyrate and probiotics supports sustainable weight loss.
  • Supercharge Energy Levels: Improved digestion and gut health contribute to increased energy.
  • Dramatically Improve Digestion: Supports overall digestive health.
  • Improve Mood and Mental Clarity: A healthy gut can positively influence mental well-being.

Core Ingredients

  • GLP-1 Postbiotic Compound (CoreBiome®): This unique butyrate compound stimulates GLP-1 production, reducing appetite and supporting weight loss.
  • Super Probiotic Blend: Enhances metabolism, relieves digestive discomfort, and potentially blocks harmful bacteria.
  • Grape Seed Extract: Supports a fortified gut lining and supports a healthy microbiome.

Mechanism of Action

Inno Gut Protect focuses on enhancing the gut microbiome and repairing the gut lining. CoreBiome® stimulates GLP-1 production, which helps reduce appetite and supports weight loss. The postbiotic + probiotic blend helps maintain a balanced gut ecosystem, crucial for metabolic health.

Understanding Ozempic

Ozempic is a prescription medication containing semaglutide, a GLP-1 receptor agonist. It is primarily used to manage type 2 diabetes but has been found effective for weight loss due to its appetite-suppressing properties.

Key Benefits

  • Effective Weight Loss: Clinical trials have shown significant weight loss results in users.
  • Blood Sugar Control: Helps manage blood sugar levels in people with type 2 diabetes.
  • Reduced Appetite: By mimicking the effects of GLP-1, Ozempic helps reduce food intake.

Mechanism of Action

Ozempic works by mimicking the effects of the GLP-1 hormone, which regulates appetite and food intake. It slows down gastric emptying, making you feel fuller for longer. Additionally, it helps control blood sugar levels, which can be beneficial for individuals with type 2 diabetes.

Comparing Inno Gut Protect and Ozempic

Weight Loss Efficacy

  • Inno Gut Protect: Uses natural gut-loving compounds to stimulate GLP-1 production, leading to gradual and sustainable weight loss. It supports overall gut health, which can contribute to long-term weight management, and overall better health.
  • Ozempic: Provides more immediate and pronounced weight loss results, especially beneficial for those with type 2 diabetes. It requires a prescription and is administered through injections, which may not be favorable or sustainable for everyone.

Side Effects

  • Inno Gut Protect: Being a natural supplement with gradual weight loss, it is generally well-tolerated with minimal side effects. Its focus on gut health can also alleviate digestive issues.
  • Ozempic: Common side effects include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and constipation. As a medication, it may have more significant side effects compared to natural supplements.

Cost

  • Inno Gut Protect: Offers a cost-effective alternative to weight loss injectables. It provides comprehensive gut health benefits at a fraction of the price.
  • Ozempic: As a prescription medication, it can be expensive, especially without insurance coverage. The cost can be a significant consideration for long-term use.

Accessibility

  • Inno Gut Protect: Available right through the Inno Supps website, making it easily accessible to a broader audience.
  • Ozempic: Requires a prescription, which can limit accessibility for some individuals.

inno gut

The Viability of Weight Loss Supplements

Effectiveness

Weight loss supplements can be effective, particularly when combined with a healthy diet and regular exercise. Supplements like Inno Supps’ Inno Gut Protect that improve gut health can have a broader impact on overall well-being, making weight management more sustainable.

Safety Considerations

While many weight loss supplements claim to be safe, it is essential to research and consult healthcare professionals before starting any new regimen. Supplements should be evaluated for their ingredients, potential side effects, and interactions with other medications.

Long-term Solutions

Weight loss supplements should not be viewed as a standalone solution but as part of a comprehensive weight management plan. Sustainable weight loss typically involves lifestyle changes, including improved dietary habits and increased physical activity. Supplements can provide additional support but should not replace these foundational elements.

So, Inno Supps’ Inno Gut Protect or Ozempic?

In the comparison of Inno Supps’ Inno Gut Protect vs. Ozempic, they both offer effective weight loss solutions, but they cater to different needs and preferences. Inno Gut Protect is ideal for those seeking a natural, holistic approach to weight management with additional gut health benefits. On the other hand, Ozempic is suitable for individuals looking for a medically supervised, potent weight loss solution, and they may not particularly care about the side effects.

The choice between Inno Supps’ Inno Gut Protect vs. Ozempic should be based on individual health goals, preferences, and medical advice. Consulting with a healthcare professional can help determine the best option for achieving your weight loss and overall health objectives.

In summary, weight loss supplements like Inno Gut Protect provide a viable option for those looking to enhance their weight loss efforts naturally.

Let us know what you think in the comments below. Also, be sure to follow Generation Iron on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram

2024 Vancouver Pro Bodybuilding Preview & Full Rosters

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Here is a look into the upcoming 2024 Vancouver Pro competition!

The 2024 Vancouver Pro is scheduled for July 13-14 in Abbotsford, BC, Canada. There will be a total of six divisions taking the stage with winners earning a spot in the 2024 Olympia.

The Men’s Open division will be the highlight of the show and bring the largest roster with 10 competitors fighting for the title. Below, check out a full breakdown of the division, along with completed rosters from each section.

2024 Vancouver Pro Men’s Open Lineup

  • Slavoj Bednar
  • Tim Budesheim
  • Yi-Shan Cheng
  • Stan De Longeaux
  • John Jewett
  • Hossein Kalateh
  • Diogo Nunes
  • Jay Plascencia
  • Robin Strand
  • Stuart Sutherland

Stuart Sutherland

Sutherland continues to ascend in the Men’s Open division and might be considered one of the favorites to win in Vancouver. He finished in the top five during the New York Pro and California State Pro this year. Sutherland will have to come in shredded to the bone if he wants to come out on top in this year’s competition and punch his ticket to the Olympia for the first time.

John Jewett

Jewett is in his second season since moving from 212 to Men’s Open and continues to improve each year. In 2023, Jewett finished as the runner-up during the Legion Sports Fest. He entered 2024 with high hopes and impressed with a third-place finish at the Toronto Pro Supershow. Jewett has built a physique that can earn a win on stage and it would be his first since turning Pro in 2017.

 

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Tim Budesheim

Budesheim remains extremely active on stage heading into Vancouver. He has competed three times this season, including a top-five finish at the Toronto Pro Supershow. He is another competitor that is eyeing his first victory of his career and first appearance at the Olympia.

 

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2024 Vancouver Pro Full Lineups

Classic Physique

  • Isaac Baier
  • Prince Emeka
  • Jorge Luis Guerrero Gallegos
  • Mike Murray
  • Samuel Paquin
  • Hamzah Saeed
  • Kellen Wilson

Men’s Physique

  • Reuben Glass
  • Mehdi Kabbadj
  • Philippe Lebrun
  • Daniel Leone
  • Michael Otule
  • Sidy Pouye
  • Monty Sylvan
  • Taylor Wilson

Fitness

  • Abby Bolton
  • Danielle Chikeles
  • Andrea Glass
  • Tamara Vahn
  • Jessica Zehr

Figure

  • Natashia Dallin Marshall
  • Peyton Dutcher
  • Manon Dutilly
  • Giselie Heathcote
  • Barbara Kiss
  • Alise Millions-Colley
  • Jiyoon Seo
  • Mandy Urner

Bikini

  • Brianna Campardo
  • Ashley Kaltwasser
  • Oleksandra Khovrych
  • Sarah Neuheisel
  • Jule Schwabe
  • Courtney Ustrzycki
  • Tianna Weymouth

For more news and updates, follow Generation Iron on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.

Matt Wenning Warns Of Kidney Damage in Bodybuilders And Heavy Lifting Athletes… And A Path Towards Prevention

Powerlifter Matt Wenning shares details of his kidney health issues caused by high blood pressure, high sodium, and heavy lifting

The latest episode of The Mike O’Hearn Show, hosted by Mike O’Hearn with special guest co-host John Tsikouris, owner of Titan Medical hormone clinic, featured a compelling discussion with champion powerlifter Matt Wenning. The episode delved into the intersection of kidney health and high-level strength sports, providing valuable insights for athletes and fitness enthusiasts alike.

For those who lift at extreme levels for competitive sport, such as bodybuilders, powerlifters, and strongmen – it’s important to consider the health of your liver and kidneys. This is especially true for those who may engage with PEDs such as steroids. But just because there is a risk does not mean there isn’t a way to mitigate those risks. It simply involved taking a more engaged approach towards preventative health.

RELATED: Bodybuilders Are Dying: An Investigation Into Modern Bodybuilding, Health, & PED Use

Matt Wenning is a renowned name in the world of powerlifting. His impressive career is marked by numerous records and championships, including multiple all-time world records in the squat, bench press, and total categories. Wenning is also known for his contributions as a strength coach and his innovative training methodologies, which have helped countless athletes achieve peak performance. His dedication to the sport and his commitment to promoting health and longevity within the strength community make him a respected figure in fitness.

Health in High-Level Strength Sports

In this episode, Matt Wenning shared his personal journey of balancing health with the demands of powerlifting. Wenning, who has recently lost weight to improve his overall health, highlighted the challenges that come with being a large athlete in a sport that demands massive strength.

Typically, powerlifters need to maintain significant body mass to lift extraordinary weights in competitions. However, this lifestyle can have long-term health consequences, a reality Wenning has faced and addressed.

Mike O’Hearn and Matt Wenning both emphasized the critical role of regular bloodwork in maintaining health, especially as athletes age. O’Hearn, now in middle age, shared how seriously he takes blood tests to monitor his internal health, even when he feels fit. Wenning agreed, revealing that he now has bloodwork done every 12 weeks to stay on top of his health markers.

Early Signs of Kidney Complications – The Silent Killer

In 2023, during a routine medical check-up, Matt Wenning received some concerning news regarding his kidneys. His doctor recommended a visit to a specialist due to early warning signs of kidney complications.

This revelation was surprising given Wenning’s overall fitness and health. Typically, those who visit kidney specialists are not athletes but individuals with severe health issues. Wenning’s use of anabolic steroids was also discussed, but his testosterone levels were within the high normal range, unlike many users who abuse steroids.

John Tsikouris, the co-host and owner of Titan Medical, provided additional insights into kidney health. He noted that many adults unknowingly live with stage one kidney disease. Tsikouris believes a significant portion of the population may be affected without realizing it, highlighting the importance of regular health screenings.

Stem Cell Therapy and Lifestyle Changes

Matt Wenning shared his experience with a second medical consultation, where a doctor recommended injecting stem cells directly into his kidneys to aid in healing. This procedure, similar to one undergone by champion bodybuilder Chris Bumstead, aims to repair and rejuvenate kidney function.

Reflecting on his earlier years, Wenning acknowledged that his borderline high blood pressure was exacerbated by the intense physical demands of powerlifting. Heavy lifts would cause his already high blood pressure to spike to dangerous levels, contributing to his kidney damage over time. John Tsikouris pointed out that high blood pressure is a silent killer of the kidneys, emphasizing the need for careful monitoring and management.

Steps for Athletes to Maintain Kidney Health

Mike O’Hearn asked Matt Wenning and John Tsikouris about the recommended steps for athletes and fitness enthusiasts to take if they find themselves in similar situations. Both agreed that regular bloodwork is the first crucial step. Early detection of markers indicating potential kidney damage or disease can be life-saving.

For Matt Wenning, the next step involved reducing his sodium intake. High sodium levels, common among athletes due to electrolyte consumption during physical activity, can stress the kidneys. By adjusting his diet to lower sodium levels, Wenning experienced significant health benefits, including weight loss.

The Path to Improved Health

Matt Wenning’s journey towards better health has been transformative. He recounted how, as a young athlete, he struggled to gain weight and resorted to eating unhealthy foods to bulk up for powerlifting. This dietary approach likely contributed to his current kidney health issues. However, by making conscious changes to his diet and lifestyle, Wenning has seen remarkable improvements.

As of 2024, Matt Wenning is leaner, with stabilized sodium levels and encouraging bloodwork results. The next goal is to see these markers drop to even healthier levels, a process expected to be aided by stem cell therapy over the next six months.

Wrap Up

The episode of The Mike O’Hearn Show featuring Matt Wenning was an enlightening discussion on the importance of health in high-level strength sports. Wenning’s experiences and insights, combined with expert commentary from John Tsikouris, offered valuable lessons for athletes and fitness enthusiasts. Regular bloodwork, careful monitoring of blood pressure and sodium levels, and making informed lifestyle choices are essential steps to ensure long-term health and performance.

By sharing his journey, Matt Wenning has highlighted the importance of balancing athletic ambition with health, providing a roadmap for others in the strength sports community to follow. This episode underscores the vital message that maintaining health is as crucial as achieving physical prowess in the world of competitive sports.

You can watch the full episode above. And don’t forget to check back every week for new episodes on the Generation Iron Fitness Network or wherever podcasts are downloaded.

Phil Heath Shows Off Boulder Shoulders Routine

Get massive shoulders by following this Phil Heath boulder shoulder routine.

Phil Heath recently shared his intense boulder shoulder workout and it’s not for the faint of heart. The seven-time Mr. Olympia champion knows a thing or two about building quality muscle and has been kind enough to share some of the routines that have helped him over the years.

Shoulders are like the frame of the upper body. While a painting may be beautiful in itself, having a great frame or border truly brings it all together. The same can be said about the upper body. You can have a powerful chest, a shredded six-pack, and impressive arms, but without rounded, powerful shoulders the look just isn’t complete. Phil Heath understands this notion well and has seen fit to share some shoulder-building wisdom to help anyone looking to transform their physique.

Mr. Olympia Boulder Shoulder Routine

In a recent Instagram post, Phil Heath shared six different shoulder-focused exercises that will help transform your arms. While Heath didn’t provide weight recommendations, a good rule of thumb is to choose a weight that is challenging enough to complete 12-15 reps. If 15 reps are far too easy to get through, then a heavier weight is required.

Boulder shoulders workout with 7x Mr. O

Full workout down below 👇🏽

1)Standing Lateral Raises 4×12-15

2)Viking Press 21’s 4 Sets

3)Front Raise 4×12

4)Seated Lateral Raise 4×12 (Increase weight each set)

5)Rear Delt Fly 3-4 Sets 4×12

6)Rope Pushdown 4×10-12 Finisher!!

1-2 minutes rest in between each set

Love to All 💪🏽

 

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Sets, reps, and rest periods, are all provided by the seven-time Mr. Olympia. Perhaps one of the most underrated tips of all is the rest periods. It’s impossible to create quality muscle without quality rest and of course the right nutrition.

Phil Heath is still focused on maintaining a massive and well-muscled physique. While we may not see him on stage again, you can be sure he’ll continue to maintain the impressive form that made him the greatest bodybuilder in the world.

What do you think of Phil Heath and his boulder shoulder routine?

For more news and updates, follow Generation Iron on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


News and Editorial Writer at Generation Iron, Jonathan Salmon is a writer, martial arts instructor, and geek culture enthusiast. Check out his YouTube and Instagram.

Mitchell Hooper & Will Tennyson Take On 10,000-Calorie Healthy Eating Challenge

Mitchell Hooper YouTube

Mitchell Hooper and Will Tennyson attempted to pack 10,000 calories into a day with healthy food.

Mitchell Hooper knows how to bulk in the offseason to prepare for competitions. Strongmen focus on getting as many calories in over the course of the day. At the end of June, Hooper was joined by Will Tennyson and the duo attempted a new food challenge. It featured a total of 10,000 calories made up of healthy options.

“The goal is to eat reasonably healthy.”

It was quite a year for Hooper in 2023. He began with a victory at the Arnold Strongman Classic. Hooper followed it up with a win during the Rogue Invitational and highlighted the season by being crowned World’s Strongest Man.

READ MORE: Mitchell Hooper’s 5 Tips To Avoid Plateaus

Tennyson has taken on many challenges in the fitness world, whether is be in the gym or eating. He has taken on different routines of stars, such as Dwayne Johnson. In July, he went in a different direction and attempted to workout like a performer from Cirque du Soleil. More recently, Tennyson took on a 6,000-calorie diet of Ronnie Coleman.

Mitchell Hooper was candid about his mental health struggles

Mitchell Hooper & Will Tennyson Challenge Meals

Meal 1

The duo attempted to complete this challenge in five hours and focused on healthy options. The first meal was a breakfast that consisted of 1,370 calories.

  • 10-egg omelette
  • Fruit salad
  • Toast w/ butter
  • Primo bacon
  • Light feta cheese

 

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Meal 2

Tennyson shared that he is used to eating around 4,000 calories per day. He attempted to cancel out the extra intake of calories with exercise in between meals.

  • 1 large and 1 regular chicken burrito (Hooper)
  • 1 regular chicken burrito (Tennyson)

“It’s not that hard to bulk and eat good food but it’s really easy to overeat.”

Meal 3

Mitchell Hooper and Will Tennyson added a bottle of puree as a snack before the third and final meal of the challenge.

  • Lamb shank (Hooper)
  • Salmon (Tennyson)

“This is also the answer to how strongman athletes eat so much. Half of them life about how much they eat. It’s not as hard as you think.”

Hooper and Tennyson fell short of their 10,000-calorie goal set at the beginning of the challenge. In the end, Hooper consumed 4,640 calories while Tennyson ate 3,270 for a total of 7,910.

For more news and updates, follow Generation Iron on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.

How Stress Affects Your Fitness Goals And How To Manage It

stress

Too much stress can have a negative effect on your workouts, and here is why

Our lives are filled with busy schedules. Between work, relationships, personal self care, and trying to stay active and healthy, stress can creep in and disrupt a healthy lifestyle. It can be overwhelming and hard to control much of the time and without knowing the proper ways to manage stress, easing our minds can be a difficult challenge.

Stress Overview

Your mind and body feed off of one another, working together to keep you both physically and mentally healthy. Exercise is a common and very beneficial stress relieving aid for being active works to boost endorphins to make you feel good (1).

Along with that, knowing you are actively building muscle mass or improving your cardio can really enhance confidence and self-image, thus improving your mood and allowing you to relax and start to settle those stressful thoughts.

Unfortunately, stress can work against us at times and although we may embark on our fitness journey as best we can, the effects of stress can negatively impact our workouts. As a serious de-motivator, it can be hard to lace up our shoes and go for even a short run, let alone a high intensity workout, so learning to manage stress as best we can goes a long way in improving all aspects of our fitness goals.

stress

Negative Effects Of Stress

There are a lot of negative effects of stress on your body, so let’s take a look at some.

Hinders Recovery

Recovery is an essential part of seeing big gains and overall growth, as this is where the muscle repairs bigger and stronger. Being overly stressed can make for a longer time to recover. When you are left feeling tired and sore, your muscles will not have a chance to repair themselves (2).

A lack of recovery not only leaves you feeling fatigued, but it also increases your risk of injury potentially putting you out of the gym. Hydrating is key and adding in a good supplement like a whey protein can aid recovery but also ensure you get enough sleep so your muscles have time to fully recover. Sleep is actually where your body generates the most human growth hormone and testosterone, which are both crucial muscle building hormones.

Increases Muscle Tension

When you are stressed, your muscles tense up to protect against injury, and if not properly recovered, ironically this can lead to unfortunate injury and pain. With tight muscles, your room to grow is seriously diminished and if you are in a constant state of stress, your muscles never truly get a chance to relax. This can also affect posture and trigger increased levels of cortisol, which triggers a fight or flight response leaving you in a continued state of tension.

Working with a physical therapist or getting a massage can really help relieve a lot of this tension. Massage guns are also great at-home muscle relieving tools.

stress

Affects Concentration

Stress forces your mind to wander and that loss of focus just makes you feel as if you are going through the motions. Working on mind-muscle connection in the gym will help you see growth and if a lack of concentration is present, you won’t perform to full potential.

Poor concentration also makes it easier for mistakes to occur with form and technique, also increasing your risk of injury. Yoga and other forms of meditation are healthy ways to really gain clarity when it comes to boosting your concentration and focus.

Increases Appetite and Body Fat

We’ve all experienced an unfortunate binge when we are stressed. That is the result of a hormone called cortisol which is considered the “stress hormone” but also performs functions like aiding metabolism, increasing blood sugar, and modulating the immune system (3). Cortisol can increase your cravings for more sugary foods and mix that with a stressed out person, it leads to binge eating causing an increase in your caloric intake and unfortunate weight gain.

Cortisol also causes your body to store fat, which increases your body fat and makes it hard to get that desired physique (4). This works in a vicious cycle of cortisol being released, increasing your cravings leading to a binge or just unhealthy eating, only to have cortisol then store fat to make it harder for you to lose weight. Working on stress relief and finding a good diet you can stay consistent with will help with this problem big time.

stress

Ways To Reduce Stress

Stressors in our lives will always be present, so knowing how to deal with stress will prove to be huge for our overall health and wellness. One way to reduce stress is to keep in mind that exercise is key, so even when you feel down and out, find an excuse to get moving and get those endorphins flowing because you will feel better after (5).

Too much caffeine or other stimulants can cause stress so working to reduce your caffeine intake will also help. Yes, unfortunately to reduce stress you should try and cut back on pre-workouts and those delicious energy drinks.

Another way to reduce stress is to try things like meditation, yoga, or other mindfulness activities to really work to calm your mind and stay on top of your game.

But most importantly, reach out to people. Whether it be family or friends, talk about what’s going on and let them help you. Your fitness goals are important but so is your overall quality of life so don’t let stress take you down.

Will Ashwagandha Relieve Stress? 

In the supplement world, it is often said that ashwagandha will reduce cortisol levels, and relieve stress. That being said, what is the best ashwagandha supplement to do so? Nutricost Ashwagandha Gummies.

Great tasting, convenient, and an effective form of ashwagandha to really help you recover, grow, and improve your overall health.

Each serving of Nutricost’s product delivers a potent 1200mg equivalent of Ashwagandha, meticulously sourced from a concentrated 30:1 Ashwagandha extract at 40mg strength.

Check out the full review here!

Wrap Up

We all deal with stress in different ways. For those of us who love fitness and take our health seriously, stress can unfortunately work against us and force us into deep holes of despair keeping us from what we love and hurting our fitness progress. Hindering recovery, increasing muscle tension, promoting poor concentration, and leading us to weight gain are all ways that stress hurts our fitness goals. Working to reduce stress through mindfulness activities, talking with family and friends, and of course, pushing ourselves to exercise, are great ways to combat stress so you always win. Don’t let your hard work be taken down by stress and work to reduce it for your overall health and wellness.

Let us know what you think in the comments below. Also, be sure to follow Generation Iron on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram

*Images courtesy of Envato

References

  1. Jackson, Erica M. (2013). “Stress Relief: The Role of Exercise in Stress Management”. (source)
  2. Stults-Kolehmainen, Matthew A.; Bartholomew, John B. (2012). “Psychological stress impairs short-term muscular recovery from resistance exercise”. (source)
  3. Christiansen, Jens J.; Djurhuus, Christian B.; Gravholt, Claus H.; Iversen, Per; Christiansen, Jens S.; Schmits, Ole; Weeke, Jorgen; Jorgensen, Jens Otto Lunde; Moller, Niels (2007). “Effects of Cortisol on Carbohydrate, Lipid, and Protein Metabolism: Studies of Acute Cortisol Withdrawal in Adrenocortical Failure”. (source)
  4. Kandhalu, Preethi. “Effects of Cortisol on Physical and Psychological Aspects of the Body and Effective Ways by Which One Can Reduce Stress”. (source)
  5.  Kim, Jong-Ho; McKenzie, Larry A. (2014). “The Impacts of Physical Exercise on Stress Coping and Well-Being in University Students in the Context of Leisure”. (source)

Incline Bench vs. Flat Bench Press:

incline vs flat bench

A comprehensive comparison to two chest exercises

The bench press is a staple exercise in almost all strength training and bodybuilding routines. Whether you are looking to be the next Mr. Olympia or the World’s Strongest Man, the bench press is probably something you do. Among its variations, the flat bench press and the incline bench press are the most popular.

Both exercises target the chest muscles but have distinct differences in their execution, muscle activation, and benefits. This article will explore the key differences between the incline and flat bench presses, helping you decide which exercise to prioritize in your workout routine.

Anatomy and Muscle Activation

incline vs flat bench

Flat Bench Press

The flat bench press is performed on a horizontal bench. This exercise primarily targets the pectoralis major, the large chest muscle. It also engages the anterior deltoids (front shoulders), triceps brachii, and the muscles of the core for stabilization.

  • Primary Muscle Activation: Pectoralis Major
  • Secondary Muscle Activation: Anterior Deltoids, Triceps Brachii, Core Muscles

Incline Bench Press

The incline bench press is performed on a bench set at a 30 to 45-degree angle. This variation shifts the focus towards the upper portion of the pectoralis major and places a greater emphasis on the anterior deltoids. The incline position also requires more stabilization from the core muscles.

  • Primary Muscle Activation: Upper Pectoralis Major
  • Secondary Muscle Activation: Anterior Deltoids, Triceps Brachii, Core Muscles

Benefits of Incline and Flat Bench

bench press

Flat Bench Press

  1. Overall Chest Development: The flat bench press is excellent for building overall chest mass. It evenly targets the entire pectoral region.
  2. Strength Foundation: As a compound movement, the flat bench press helps build a strong foundation for other pressing exercises.
  3. Versatility: This exercise can be performed with various equipment, including barbells, dumbbells, and machines, making it versatile for different training goals.
  4. Technique Mastery: Mastering the flat bench press can help improve performance in other chest-related exercises and provide a solid base for progression in strength training.

Incline Bench Press

  1. Upper Chest Emphasis: The incline bench press specifically targets the upper chest, helping create a fuller, more balanced chest appearance.
  2. Shoulder Activation: This variation engages the anterior deltoids more intensely, contributing to overall shoulder development.
  3. Reduced Shoulder Strain: Some lifters find the incline bench press places less stress on the shoulder joints compared to the flat bench press, making it a suitable alternative for those with shoulder issues.
  4. Functional Strength: Enhancing upper chest strength can translate to improved performance in activities that require pushing movements at an upward angle.

Execution and Technique

Flat Bench Press Technique

  1. Setup: Lie flat on a bench with your feet firmly planted on the ground. Your eyes should be directly under the barbell.
  2. Grip: Grip the barbell slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. Ensure your wrists are straight and your grip is firm.
  3. Lift-Off: Unrack the barbell and hold it above your chest with arms fully extended.
  4. Lowering Phase: Slowly lower the barbell to your mid-chest, keeping your elbows at a 45-degree angle from your body.
  5. Pressing Phase: Push the barbell back up to the starting position, fully extending your arms and squeezing your chest at the top.

Incline Bench Press Technique

  1. Setup: Adjust the bench to a 30 to 45-degree angle. Sit back with your feet firmly on the ground.
  2. Grip: Grip the barbell slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. Ensure your wrists are straight and your grip is firm.
  3. Lift-Off: Unrack the barbell and hold it above your upper chest with arms fully extended.
  4. Lowering Phase: Slowly lower the barbell to your upper chest, keeping your elbows at a 45-degree angle from your body.
  5. Pressing Phase: Push the barbell back up to the starting position, fully extending your arms and squeezing your chest at the top.

Common Bench Press Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

Flat Bench Press Mistakes

  1. Elbow Flare: Flaring the elbows too wide can increase shoulder strain. Keep your elbows at a 45-degree angle from your body.
  2. Arching the Back Excessively: While a slight arch is natural, excessive arching can lead to lower back issues. Maintain a neutral spine with a natural arch.
  3. Partial Range of Motion: Lowering the bar only halfway reduces the exercise’s effectiveness. Ensure a full range of motion by bringing the bar to your chest.
  4. Bouncing the Bar: Allowing the barbell to bounce off the chest can cause injury. Focus on controlled, deliberate movements.

Incline Bench Press Mistakes

  1. Incorrect Bench Angle: Setting the bench angle too high shifts the focus away from the chest to the shoulders. Stick to a 30 to 45-degree angle.
  2. Wrist Position: Allowing the wrists to bend backward can lead to injury. Keep your wrists straight and aligned with your forearms.
  3. Uneven Lowering: Lowering the bar unevenly can lead to muscle imbalances. Focus on controlled and even movement throughout the exercise.
  4. Rushing the Lift-Off: Not securing the barbell properly during lift-off can destabilize the exercise. Ensure a stable and controlled lift-off.

Which Exercise is Better for You?

chest exercises

Goals and Priorities

  • Overall Chest Mass: If your goal is to build overall chest mass, the flat bench press should be a staple in your routine.
  • Upper Chest Development: For those looking to enhance the upper chest and achieve a more defined upper body, the incline bench press is crucial.
  • Shoulder Concerns: If you have shoulder issues, you may find the incline bench press to be more comfortable and less stressful on the joints.
  • Exercise Variety: Incorporating both exercises can prevent workout monotony and stimulate muscle growth through varied angles and muscle activation patterns.

Incorporating Both Incline and Flat Bench 

For balanced chest development, incorporating both variations into your training routine is ideal. You can alternate between flat and incline bench presses within your weekly workouts or even within the same session. This approach ensures comprehensive chest development and prevents muscle imbalances.

Incline vs. Flat Bench Conclusion

Both the flat bench press and the incline bench press offer unique benefits and play important roles in a well-rounded strength training program. Understanding their differences and how they affect muscle activation will help you tailor your workouts to your specific goals.

Whether you aim for overall chest mass or a more defined upper chest, incorporating both exercises will contribute to a stronger, more balanced physique. Consistently practicing proper technique and avoiding common mistakes will maximize the effectiveness of each exercise, leading to optimal results in your strength training journey.

Let us know what you think in the comments below. Also, be sure to follow Generation Iron on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram

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