- BarBend Newsletter
- 🏋️♂️ build more muscle with these rowing tips
🏋️♂️ build more muscle with these rowing tips
Today’s newsletter is presented by WHOOP. If you need a wearable that accurately tracks your weight training progress, WHOOP’s new Strength Trainer feature offers a deep dive into your workouts. And since you’re a BarBend reader, head here for a free WHOOP 4.0 strap, one free month of the service, and a $0 signup fee.
Here’s what’s on tap in today’s edition:
Does chasing a pump build muscle?
The benefits and challenges of rowing machines
Are all calories created equal?
Thrill of the Pump
Nothing hits like a good pump. Your shirt drapes over your chest after a few high-rep sets of pec flyes. Your shoulders, engorged with blood, stretch wider than usual and accentuate your V-taper. Leaving the gym with a glute pump at the end of a leg workout? Forget about it.
In technical terms, a pump occurs when blood flows into the muscle faster than it is carried out, causing some acute swelling. The Golden Age of bodybuilding was all about doing high-volume pump work, but does training for the pump itself actually build muscle, or is it all smoke and mirrors?
Modern-day fitness experts (such as Jeff Nippard and Dr. Mike Israetel) believe it has some hypertrophic value, and there is even some hard, lab coat-wearing science to suggest the volume behind the intracellular swelling is ideal for muscular growth. Find out how the pump can increase your gains.
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There’s no other way to say it: rowing is hard. Using a rowing machine usually ends up with you creating your own private sweat puddle and trying to rub the pain out of your legs and back. But does the muscle soreness you get from a hard rowing session lead to bigger gains?
Rowers provide significant resistance as you push and pull your way through a complete “stroke.” With your entire body straining through a large range of motion, your upper- and lower-body muscles take a beating. And while rowing isn’t taking your squat from 700 to 750 pounds, it may be the perfect environment for your body to begin building muscle if you’re new to the world of training. See all the ways rowing can benefit you below.
What’s in a Name?
Given the amount of attention dedicated specifically to calories within training circles, strength athletes can benefit tremendously from understanding exactly what we mean when we use the word calories. Is a calorie just a calorie? Or is there more to know about these units of energy measurement?
The heart of the matter is how different types of calories impact the body’s ability to function and whether the macronutrient value of food may have a greater effect on weight loss than raw caloric content. Take some notes from a Ph.D. candidate and find out how your calories can go to work for you, rather than against you.
Test Your Resolve
Mitchell Hooper is always on the hunt for ways to improve his body for his upcoming defenses of his World’s Strongest Man and Arnold Classic titles. Borrowing from Eddie Hall, Hooper has implemented this morning routine to help give him an edge.
Weighted squat jumps predate bands and chains as a method of explosive barbell training. Learn how to use the art of getting some hang time to build raw power.