Post 8: Shoulder and Arm Workout #1

Here is a good, fast workout I did Saturday. All you need is a bench or steps and a couple of dumbbells or bands. When you see the reps, please understand that I am picking a weight that will allow me to fall just short of the expected number of reps. After I go to failure, I take a couple of seconds and get 2-3 more. That is the end of the set. Make each set count! As for the exercises, email me or leave a comment if you can’t figure them out.

This workout has 3 different groups of three exercises each. Each round we do 4 times, so you will be doing a total of 12 sets for each body part ( shoulders, biceps, triceps ).

Round 1  Try for 15 reps ( Men ) 15-20 ( Women )
Round 2 Try for 10-12 reps ( Men) 15 ( Women )
Round 3 Try for 8-10 reps ( Men) 12-15 ( Women)
Round 4 Try for 6-8 reps ( Men) 10-12 ( Women)

Group 1
Curl and Press
Side Laterals
Rear Bench Dips
( Repeat for 4 sets increasing the weight or resistance each time.

Take a short break

Group 2
Upright Row
Hammer Curl
Tricep Kickbacks
Same instructions as above.

Group 3
Wrist curl
Front raises
Close grip Push-ups

This should beat you up pretty good. If you actually did the workout, put it in your profile so I can see it. Didn’t register for your free online coaching yet? What are you waiting for? Click here for free online coaching and diet info.

Let me know what you think.

Michael Medvig
M Factor Fitness Personal Training

All information and materials on this site are provided as is and without warranty of any kind. These materials (including all text, images, logos, compilation, and design, unless otherwise noted) are copyright  2001 M Factor Fitness Inc. All rights reserved.

These materials may not be copied or redistributed for commercial purposes or for compensation of any kind without prior written permission from M Factor Fitness Inc. If you have questions about these terms please email us.

Copyright 2001 M Factor Fitness Inc. All rights reserved.

Katherine Switzer

Women’s Workout Myths

I am going to focus on women and why your workout isn’t working for you.

Please don’t get offended by anything I say or get your feelings hurt. We are just going to chat about workout myths.

I am just going to give you an honest opinion on how you can change your workout to lose fat and tone up.

Man, I hate that phrase. Let’s call it what it is. I am going to show you how to build muscle because really that is what you are after.

Not big bulky muscles but toned, strong muscles that make you look like you are in shape…because you are in shape.

The idea is to get more out of your workout or in some cases, start getting something out of your workouts.

workout myths bustedIf I can brag a little.

Probably 70% of my clients are women and of those, everyone is 45-70. Some of them come from the old school of Jazzercise, Step,Pilates and some have never lifted at all.

The vast majority of women who have trained with me for more than a few weeks have dropped dress sizes. That is awesome. But he most common comment I get is that they love how strong they are getting without looking strong. You know what I mean?

  • They can do regular stuff like carry groceries without their arms and back hurting.
  • They can pick up their kids and grand-kids without any problem.
  • They can get down on the floor and back up without their knees hurting.

That is fitness to me.

To get there, you may have to unlearn some potent workout myths about women and exercise.

So let’s get started with the list. If you don’t want to believe me, look at my testimonials. If you don’t believe that, I will get you some phone numbers.

In many cases, the women I train are now stronger than their husbands. Ha! I love that!

Keep in mind, these workout myths are all cultural myths. Not all cultures have the same ideas about fitness as they do in America. A workout myth then is really just something that was taken to be true a long time ago and never challenged…until now.

These workout myths are outdated ideas that damage you.

If you were brought up with the idea that it was inappropriate for women to sweat and get dirty, then that is going to be a basis for how you look at exercise.

If you grew up with the idea of starving yourself to fit into a dress, that may end up being your concept of nutrition.

If you grew up thinking women are the weaker of the sexes and it is “not proper” to lift heavy weights, that will be your view on strength training.


Workout Myth 1: Men and Women should exercise differently.

Fact: There is no such thing as a workout program for men and a separate workout program for women.

workout myths bustedThis is such an outdated argument, I can’t believe it is still around. If I were a woman, I would find this to be insulting.

Men should lift heavy weights because…well they are men. That is what they do.

Women should dance around for an hour because…well women like to dance.

And if you want to lift weights, pick up the lightest, most colorful dumbbells possible. That is just demeaning.

Muscle is muscle. No doubt we have different chemistry and hormonal levels but in the end, there is only one way to stimulate a muscle to grow no matter what sex you are.

You have to overload the muscle with enough stress to break it down, then give it time to heal and repair and it will stronger and be able to contract more efficiently.

Thank goodness for Crossfit. I may have some issues with the way Crossfit works but the one major contribution they have made to society is that they have both sexes doing the same workout. About time!


Workout Myth 2: There are “Lady” exercises

Fact: Huh?

Katherine Switzer

Katherine Switzer trying to run the first Boston marathon in 1966 while course officials try to yank her off the course because women shouldn’t run marathons.












This workout myth is brought to you by the same morons who thought it was unhealthy for women to run marathons. This is almost as bad as the scientists who thought your heart would explode if you ran a sub 4 minute mile.

There are no “men” exercises just as there are no “Women” exercises. An exercise is either going to be effective at tearing down muscle tissue and making stronger or it isn’t. Marketers are the ones that have created this divide to sell you your gender appropriate workout.

Workout Myth 3: High reps for lean muscle

Fact: No, low reps for lean muscle.

What in the heck is lean muscle anyway? Ever wonder about that?

Ever hear the term fat muscle?

I wonder what marketing wiz came up with that one. Muscle is muscle. It is never lean or fat. However, it can be in a state of hypertrophy (growing) or atrophy (shrinking).

It has to be one or the other.

The point of exercising with resistance is to break muscle fiber down and then let it rebuild in a stronger state.

When you lift light weights for high reps, you never break down the muscle fiber. The pain you feel is lactic acid and other waste products building up in the cell.

Look at it this way, if light repetitive movements built muscle, then manual laborers would all be built like Arnold.

Doesn’t happen does it?

Workout Myth 4: Heavy weights lead to big, bulky muscles

M Factor FitnessFact: Hormone levels determine muscle size.

Take a man and a woman and lets work them out for a while. Say they want to “Get in Shape” meaning lose some fat and build some muscle. Divide them into 2 test groups.

Test 1: High rep, low intensity workouts.

At the end of 12 weeks they both should have lost some weight. Depending on how out of shape they were, they could have gained a little muscle and appear to be slightly more tone. Their cardio will be better but most likely their metabolism will be about the same, meaning they burn as many calories at rest as they did before they started. As long as they do the high rep stuff, they can lose weight, which will be a mixture of fat and muscle being burned. But the moment they stop exercising, they will start putting weight back on. Kinda sucks, doesn’t it?

Really, they have lost some weight and become a smaller version of themselves.

 Test 2: Lower reps (8-12) with heavier weights.

After 12 weeks they both will have gained muscle and lost fat. The man will have more visible muscles while the women will appear more tone. Their shape will change and their metabolism has been increased.

This is due to the difference in hormonal makeup. This will be a greatly simplified explanation.

The man has more testosterone. Testosterone builds muscle and strength. And men have a much higher ration of testosterone to estrogen.

Women have more estrogen. Estrogen helps to retain fat and give you the soft rounded look. It is terrible for building muscles but great for reproduction.

So if you have a high estrogen to testosterone ratio, it will be harder to build muscle and even harder, if not impossible, to build big muscles.

But there are 2 real takeaways here.

As a women, you have changed your metabolism. You will now burn more calories at rest that you had before.

You have changed your shape. Muscle takes up less room than fat. You have lowered your body fat but you are also in command of how your body looks.

What about female bodybuilders?

Ever notice they look kinda manly? Take steroids and you will rocket your testosterone. As a female, this will allow you to build muscle faster and will also give you some other manly characteristics such as facial hair, a lower voice and thickened bones.

All I am saying here is don’t be afraid to lift heavy. You won’t get big muscles but you will get the results you want.

I have been training women this way for well over a decade and the only thing that happens is they drop dress sizes and gain confidence with the newfound strength.

Workout Myth 5: Lifting heavy weights make you bulky.

Fact: A bad diet makes you bulky.

Muscle is muscle. You can’t change the shape of it. All you can do is train it to make it tone. This is where sound nutrition comes in.

Eat too much and you put a nice slab of fat over your muscle. That is when you look and feel bulky. Bulk is nothing more than that.

Usually the culprit is too many carbs. Working out and exercising hard can make you ravenous. Eating protein will never make you gain fat but eating too many carbs will.


Technically the body can convert protein, carbs and fat to fat if it has to. Protein gets broken down into amino acids and absorbed into the body for muscle repair, immune system functions etc…

Carbs are sugars and are easy to break down. Once you have enough glycogen stored in the liver and bloodstream, the body will  convert excess carbs into fat for storage.

So…if you are exercising and see yourself starting to bulk up, don’t starve yourself, just cut back a little on the carbs or add a little more cardio to the workouts.

Which brings us to the last myth.

Workout Myth 6: Eat salads to lose weight

Fact: Eat salads to gain weight. Eat protein to lose fat.

If you don’t eat enough, the muscles will never have the building blocks to grow and get stronger. This is not a workout myth but a nutrition one. Does eating clean mean eating like a bunny? It may be feminine to order a salad and eat half of it…I guess. I would prefer my wife orders a nice chunk of protein with a couple vegetables. That way you get protein, fats, fiber and vitamins.

The bottom line

There are three major things you can do today to improve your health and your workouts. Seeing these workout myths for what they are is the first step. remember, the idea of the athletic women is a relatively new concept. This is happening in our lifetime!

  1. Workout with weights and lift heavier.
  2. Get enough sleep.
  3. Eat protein and vegetables. You don’t have to go crazy with it, just eat more.

If you need additional help with any of this, I have an awesome online training program you can get for only $10/month. Click here for details.







Post 6: Can you Be Healthy and Still Eat Fast Food?

Here is an interesting article I ran across.
Just another reminder that nutrition and fitness is not a black and white issue. Actually I enjoy fast food as a cheat meal. It is a great guilty pleasure but I don’t overlook the damage it causes and I try to keep it to a minimum.

The one thing I would argue is the old calorie versus energy argument. Most clients who are unsuccessful in dropping fat have internal issues they need to fix and you can blame most of those issues on a poor diet and lifestyle. Until they fix those issues, they are just not going to lose weight. Period. 

If this is you, click on this link for a short presentation on “leaky gut syndrome” and what you can do about it. In my opinion, this is the most overlook cause of obesity and illness in modern life.

I advocate 3 things.
1. Find a way to exercise that you like.
2. Learn how to eat.
3. Learn how to fix the damage you have done to your body.
4. Enjoy life.

 This is very simple and effective. The end result is that you will gradually adopt a healthier lifestyle, one which will be much easier to maintain the rest of your life.

Here is the article.

Can You Diet And Still Eat Fast Food?

Exclusive MNS Library Article

You’d imagine the answer to that would be ‘no’, but the cold hard facts about dieting show us that we *can* still enjoy fast food – read on to see why…

It’s important to point out from the start that putting dieting and fast food together is not one of those ‘eat and get thin’ plans. It has nothing to do with Atkins, or anything like that.

No, it comes from 2 angles – firstly the facts about dieting, and secondly some facts about self improvement and goal achievement.

When most people go on a diet, they have a mindset of hardship and deprivation – after all, they are fat because of the way they eat, so losing weight must been cutting out all the goodies, right?


Any diet that promotes cutting out entire foodgroups should be given an immediate red flag in my view. The only sensible way to diet that is healthy, workable, and sustainable is to combine a reduction of your calorie intake combined with an increase in your calorie burning. Bear those 2 in mind and you’ll never have to buy another diet book again!

The main reason that diets don’t work for people is that they are too rigid, too much of a lifestyle change, so people don’t stick to them. Also, people get the idea that they can lose the weight they target, then go back to how they ate before and the weight won’t go back on!

It’s amazing that people convince themselves of this kind of nonsense, but great for the diet industry that continues to make huge sums from it!

I’m a firm believer in life of ‘everything in moderation’. If you follow that mantra you can follow a diet which is less a diet, but more a way of life. This means it will have permanent effect.

Fast food contains saturated fats and loads of calories, we all know that. If you have 3 fast food meals a week, you will put on weight more than likely.

However, you don’t have to cut them out totally to maintain a lower weight – all you need to do is be aware of the calorie count of a fast food meal, and work it into your eating plan. That doesn’t mean you have 2 fast food meals and call that your daily allowance!

What it means is that if you have say 1 fast food meal a week, you have to factor in those extra calories – they will have to be countered elsewhere, either by extra calorie burning, or missing some other calorie packed treat.

As you carry on down this path, your brain will get used to the idea of recognising fast food as full of calories, and apart from the odd treat, you’ll end up seeing it as more trouble than it’s worth!

So that’s how you can diet and still eat fast food – simple logic and quality of life lessons.

All information and materials on this site are provided as is and without warranty of any kind. These materials (including all text, images, logos, compilation, and design, unless otherwise noted) are copyright  2001 M Factor Fitness Inc. All rights reserved.

These materials may not be copied or redistributed for commercial purposes or for compensation of any kind without prior written permission from M Factor Fitness Inc. If you have questions about these terms please email us.

Copyright 2001 M Factor Fitness Inc. All rights reserved.