7 sins beginners commit trying to bulk up

skinny gym

My race to get bigger, stronger etc. started when I was 20 and in my experience getting big (muscular not fat) is as tough if not tougher than losing weight. Now we at Columbus Weightlifting receive thousands of messages from readers asking us about the right way to do it. Well it all begins by correcting a few mistakes and as someone who has made enough of those here’s a list of the sins you should be avoiding.

You eat less

In most of the cases we get regarding bulking up the common problem we noticed is that their diet is too low. Yes I know it hardly feels so but you will be shocked to know that most people fall short by a fair margin of 800-900 calories in a day.

You can make up for these lost calories through supplement shakes but if you are solely relying on your diet then the rule is simple, double it.

Your goals are unrealistic

A word of advice, do not set your goals based on commercials of supplements and gyms that promise the ideal muscular physique in just a week or month. Those are marketing tricks and avoid falling for those. Be practical when you plan your workout goals.

Set year long goals and divide that into smaller weekly or monthly goals. Here’s a fact, for the first couple of months you are only going to gain about 2 pounds at the most.

Your plan is weak

Whatever you do it all starts with a plan and your workout plan should have the perfect blend of small and big moves to ensure each muscle grows. You’ll only struggle if you workout aimlessly on any machine you come across at the gym.

For the perfect workout plan you can get in touch with our experts or just pay the extra bucks and get a trainer. Plan it all out with him. There is no better help than a personal trainer.

You’re lazing around

Another reason most beginners struggle to get big is because they do not put in the required effort to trigger muscle development. The success of your gym session depends on the challenge. Muscle fiber is broken and restored stronger only when challenged.

You can do so even without any weights. If you’re doing 10 push-ups or pull ups you can increase the count to 15-20 or add another set to take it up a notch. It’s tough but that’s exactly what you signed up for.

Short recovery period

I was always quite proud of the fact that I didn’t need more than 4-5 hours of sleep but since I prioritized my workout I have increased that to 8-9. This is because a good sleeps fastens the body’s repair process plus I can focus better on my next workout. Sleep less or sleep too late and you’ll never grow.

You’re racing to the finish

Remember your workout isn’t a time trial that you have to complete within an hour. You are more likely to ending up with bruises, hurts, sprains etc. when you’re rushing through your routine. Have patience or you’ll more likely become a patient.

Always start off light. I started with 5 Kgs and moved onto 8 after 3-4 months and now can lift about 25-30 Kgs.  It is a slow process, being patient and growing steadily is crucial.

It’s not your priority

So what’s the plan today? Finish of work and then watch a movie or drink out with friends and then if you find some time maybe just maybe hit the gym too?  Well if it isn’t your priority you’re not going to get any bigger.

Make your workout your priority and let the rest follow. Re-schedule your meetings and work hours to find time. Eat what’s important even when not hungry. Making fitness my priority helped me excel at other activities too and so will  you.

7 reasons you should date a person who lifts


Looking for a hot date at the gym? Check out the weight room. We all know lifting weights builds both confidence and muscles but that’s not all. Here are7 more reasons why you should date a person who lifts weights.

They are brighter and wiser

I bet you didn’t you that lifting weight also generates fresh brain cells or in technical terms neurogenesis and that is exactly why we lifters tend to be smarter than most. Lifting weight enhances the BDNF (Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor) hormone which helps with the process.

It also improves memory by 10-15% as your hippocampus enlarges. Although that’s not the case for the weird guy you are very sure is on steroids so skip them.

They have higher testosterone levels

For a testosterone boost stop running. It is the weights that will do the trick for you. Believe it or not as compared to a runner a person who does nothing has a higher testosterone level but far lower than a weightlifter. Low levels of testosterone can cause tiredness, depression etc.

Focus on different muscle groups for the best results. Exercises such as the Romanian deadlift, bench press etc. are ideal and here is video showing you how the Romanian deadlift is done.


They are always upbeat

Here’s a fun fact about lifting weights, it keeps you happy. Experiments done over the years have proved that weightlifting makes a person calmer and improves overall mood in just a couple of months.  This is because the body produces more endorphins to counter the pressure put on the body while lifting.

It’s also the ideal way to fight depression. So get off the treadmill and the cycle, grab a barbell and get started with exercises such as overhead squat, military press etc.

They are fitter and stronger

Though you may not immediately feel so but that time spent doing squats, presses etc. is making you stronger. Weight exercises increase your energy by 20-40%. This is because when you lift your cardio system performs better thus oxygen and nutrients reach your muscles and tissues faster.

Since your lungs and heart functioning also improves your stamina increases and thus you are able to workout better and longer. Even weight loss becomes faster as more muscle fiber is engaged and metabolism improves resulting in less fat storage. Here are few weight loss exercises to get you started.


They are more confident

Looking to date a more confident person? Once again the answer is a weightlifter. Yes weightlifting tones the body and builds muscle but along with that you grow internally as well. Various studies state that exercising for even an hour in the weight room can boost confidence by 15-20%.

Wondering why the confidence boosts? That’s because now you’ll love your image in the mirror and when you’re happy confidence automatically rises.

They live longer

When I started to run I found myself bored within a week and no matter the changes it just bored the hell out of me. So rather than dying of boredom I switched to weights and guess what weightlifters tend to live longer (I can understand why).

On a more serious note that’s because your bone density increases. It also betters the immunity and blood circulation increases. A person both physically and mentally happy is bound to live longer.

They are better at sex

For a gold medal performance in bed you will need to start lifting like a pro and no I’m not kidding. It has been scientifically proven that even an hour or two of weight training every week is ideal for better erections, long lasting orgasms and improved sex drive.

Also all the muscles and strength you have gained will help you with any sex position your special one may not have tried yet. So remember it is not just for you that you’re lifting.

7 Killer tips for your upcoming bench press competition

After hearing and reading all about the various bench press competitions you finally signed up for one maybe to get a new experience or you’re pretty serious about winning it but truth be told with just a few weeks left your press sucks and you have no clue how to get better. Well relax. Help is on its way. Here are 7 killer tips to turn you into a pro.

Keep your ego out

Be it a bench press competition, a marathon etc. there is no place for ego so leave it at the door.  Remember this or you’ll learn it the hard way.  The competitions are unlike your lifts at the gym. So don’t be a jerk, train well and avoid these newbie mistakes.

Do not lift your butt off the bench or turn your head or legs to get a sneak peak of the action around and also avoid pausing midway through the lift. There is more to learn but these will get you started on the right track.

Fix that arch

Well dude if you haven’t yet started arching your back you’re in trouble. For a top notch press the arch is important. Arching your back engages more chest muscles, provides a stronger base for your back and also places the shoulders perfectly for the heavy lift.

Try a different training programme

Switching to a more rigorous training program can help you improve and for that I suggest the Smolov Junior programme. Never heard of it? You’re in for a pleasant surprise. It’s a 3 week kick-ass training program that will enable you to lift about 25-30 Kgs within a month.

It is the ideal program but yes it’s tough, in fact very tough. You will have to bench 4-5 times in a week.  Read all about this programme here.

Get the right equipment

Check the rule book, there are plenty of accessories you will be allowed. For example when I started out my wrists weren’t too strong so I used wrist bands. Also wearing a weight belt is always safer but I avoid it as it messes the all so important arch but as long as you’re comfortable with the gear go ahead.


Learn to pause

Before you lift you should be able to pause the bar on the chest but if you can’t you’re in for trouble bro. The only memory of your big day would be the words No Lift. So get moving today itself. To practice the pauses start off with less weight and build up.

Don’t allow the bar to sink too deep into your chest either or you’ll only make it tougher for yourself to balance it and lift it high enough.

Work on that rotator cuff

Still struggling with the pause? Then it’s time to start working on your rotator cuffs. Having strong rotator cuffs makes it easier to raise the bar over the chest as they provide a slight jump. To strengthen my cuffs I do cable pull overs.

I found that to be the most effective. Just keep your hands straight and shoulders back and press the shoulder blades together. Here’s how it’s done.


Maintain a good diet

Well if you are cutting down on calories and think you can still bench 25 Kgs after dropping 5 pounds well be realistic. For a top notch competition lift you will need each calorie in your diet. Reduce the calorie count only couple weeks before the competition.

From juices and soda drinks I switched to green tea to maintain the right weight.

Now that you what’s needs to be done don’t forget to share with us your first experience.

Reebok CrossFit Lifter plus 2.1 weightlifting shoes review


We have all heard of Reebok but did you know it manufactures some of the top weightlifting shoes as well? Wondering which is the best pair of weightlifting shoes for you? Well in my opinion it is the CrossFit Lifter plus 2.1 weightlifting shoes and below in this article I have covered for you all the details about it.

Stability provided

Whats makes the Reebok CrossFit Lifter plus 2.1 weightlifting shoes unique from others is the double straps it comes with that improve the stability provided. Plan to do split jerks or exercises that needs quick leg movement? The strong sole makes it the perfect shoe for you.

If you have used the Lifter 2.0 note that the Lifter plus 2.1 is definitely an upgrade and is more of a weightlifting shoe. On the negative side the slightly high heel can act as a roadblock during some exercises.


Comfort provided

Reebok is known around the world for manufacturing shoes that are comfortable and the CrossFit Lifter plus 2.1 checks all the boxes and if you plan to spend hours training in the gym then you definitely need comfortable shoes.

Adding to the comfort of the Reebok CrossFit Lifter plus 2.1 are its flexible sole and the fabric used to make the upper portion of the shoes.


Weight of the shoes

Looking for a weightlifting shoe that is light? Then the Reebok CrossFit Lifter plus 2.1 is exactly what you have been looking for.

These shoes are quite light as compared to some of the other good weightlifting shoes and yet have the right amount of protection. If you are guessing why a light shoe? It is because a lighter shoe helps you move around quickly.

Better for Olympic and power lifts

Wondering whether the Reebok CrossFit Lifter plus 2.1 is perfect for Olympic lifting  and power lifting or not? Well the leather toe and the double strap that the shoe comes with make it quite safe for Olympic lifting but as far as power lifting goes there is definitely room for improvement. The heel raise of the shoes can cause problems during a heavy deadlift but on the bright side the heel raise is not as high as it is in some of the other shoes.


The Reebok CrossFit Lifter plus 2.1 will cost you around $170 which is actually relatively cheap. The overall performance of the shoe was quite good and it is very comfortable and solid.

Another likeable feature of the shoe is its durability and if you want a top quality shoe then you should definitely invest your money on this one. The heel raise might cause some problems but when you use it on a regular basis you will realize that it not such a big drawback.

 Learn to do Olympic Lifts

5 excellent strength exercises for weight loss


If you are unable to join a gym but still want to lose weight and strengthen your body then you are in the right place.

Below in this article I have covered for you some excellent strength exercises then will help you lose weight and ensure you remain in perfect shape.

Step up with bicep curl

For this exercise you will need a sturdy chair. Now just stand with one foot on the chair while holding 5 lbs weights in both your hands. While applying pressure on the foot on top of the bench, stand on it with the other leg raised.

Once you standing on the bench curl the weights in your hands close to your shoulders and then come back to the initial position. You must do at least 10-15 reps on each of your legs.


Squat to overhead press

Want to strengthen your abs, shoulders etc.? Then the Squat to overhead is perfect. Stand with your shoulder and legs slightly apart and hold 5 lbs weights in both your hands and place your hands over your shoulders. Now all you have to do is a squat.

Hold the squat pose for a few seconds. After this just stand up straight and place the weights over your head and hold for a few seconds and then return to the initial position. You should do at least 15 reps.


Dolphin Plank

Want a stronger back? Try out the Dolphin Plank. For this exercise you will need to lie on the ground face down and place your hands on the ground. Once that is done move your belly close to your spine and lift your knees to reach into a low plank pose.

Make sure you breathe in when you raise your hips. Once your hips are raised high enough your body should form an inverted V. Now return to the initial position. Do at least 15 reps. 4._dolphin-plank-420x420

Curtsy Lunge

For this workout you will need to stand with your legs apart. Now all you have to do is move your left or right leg backwards diagonally. After this just bend a little and move your opposite hand towards to the floor.

Once that is done, return to the initial pose and do repeat the exercise with your other leg and hand. You should do at least 15 reps for each side. This workout will strengthen your hips, butt and hamstrings.



Well this is a really interesting exercise. All you have to do here is lie on the ground with your face down and stretch your hands and legs as if you are flying. Keep your palms downwards and your toes pointed. Breathe in when you raise your hands and legs.

Lift them as high as you can and hold the position for a few moments. Now move back to the initial position while breathing out. You should do this exercise about 10-15 times. It will help you strengthen your back and also help lose butt fat.


My view about Ironmaster Super Bench Adjustable Weight Bench


Are you in search of a sturdy yet flexible weight bench? Then I would recommend you purchase the Ironmaster Super bench adjustable weight bench.

Ironmaster has been known to manufacture some of the best weight benches over the years and in case you are wondering why the Super bench note that it is one of their top models. Below in this article I have covered for you all the details that you need to know about the Ironmaster Super bench adjustable weight bench.

In their review of the best weight benches, BGG has written highly of this adjustable weight bench and that’s what caught our attention.

Flexibility Offered

Does the Ironmaster Super bench adjustable weight bench look like any ordinary weight bench that you can use with your squat or power rack? Well it is everything but ordinary and if you prefer to use attachments in order to perform various exercises then this weight bench is ideal for you.

Do the right exercises and you can workout each and every muscles of your body . The versatility of this weight bench makes it the ideal weight bench not only for commercial gyms but for home gyms as well.


Worried about the space it might take up? Well relax since this weight bench is quite smaller in size as compared to some other weight benches. The length of this weight bench is around 44 inches which is perfect for most users but if you are taller than usual then you might have some trouble.

Though it is not a major drawback but it would be best if you check out the room the equipment offers once before you buy it.


Stability provided

Want a stable Weight bench? The Ironmaster Super bench checks all the boxes. The 4 rubber feet that it comes with keeps unwanted wobbling away even during high intensity workouts.

Unstable weight benches can become a big hindrance to your workouts but with this Ironmaster weight bench you can workout without the fear of tipping over.

Curve adjustable system

Wondering what is so unique about the Ironmaster Super bench adjustable weight bench? It is the Curve adjustable system. Usually weight benches comes with a standard adjustable bar which helps change the position of the bench but this model comes with a unique curved system that performs equally well if not better.

The reason I really like this features is because it makes the weight bench appear modern but in case you prefer to have a traditional looking weight bench then you should probably get a different one.


Other features

You can adjust the Ironmaster Super bench adjustable weight bench into 11 unique positions making it ideal for any exercise. Another feature users like about this weight bench is its high weight capacity which is around 1000 lbs.

Learn exercising with a weight bench

5 Amazing Foods for BodyBuilders and Fitness

Want a better body and more mass? Then one thing you need to get spot on is your diet and to help you with your diet plans below in this article I have covered for you some nutritious yet tasty foods that will keep you energized throughout the day and also boost your metabolism, improve recovery process and give you the fuel you need to push harder during workouts.


Oysters are excellent foods for bodybuilders because it contains zinc. Why Zinc? It is because it enhances hormone production.

Studies around the world have proven that zinc helps in quicker conversion of androstenedione to testosterone and if you lift heavy weights then I am sure you know its importance.

Not a fan of eating oysters? Then other foods that are quite rich in zinc are chicken liver and pumpkin seeds.

iStock_000003647440 Oyster-2

Greek Yogurt

Have a doubt whether Greek yogurt is different than standard yogurt? Well yes it is, be Greek yogurt is made by removing unwanted liquid and carbohydrates and thus has a higher amount of proteins as compared to regular yogurt.

The protein that Greek yogurt contains is known as casein and is digested into the body quite slowly and releases amino acids which fuel your body during your workout sessions. To avoid consuming any added sugar it is best if you get plain Greek yogurt.



A favorite bodybuilding food I am sure you will love is steak. Steak contains unsaturated fats that add strength to the body. Usually athletes tend to avoid fats but when you are lifting heavy weights it is important to consume some amount of unsaturated fats.

Maintaining a proper balance is key so make sure at least 15% of your daily diet is made of foods rich in unsaturated fats. As far as trans fats are concerned it is best to avoid them completely.



Love fruits? Stock your fruit basket with some grapefruits. These fruits enhance your metabolism and are a rich source of vitamin C and studies have proven that vitamin C actually helps your body burn more fat. Note that one grapefruit contains around 80 mg of vitamin C.

Apart from improving metabolism, grapefruits contain chemicals that help lower sugar levels in the body. Lower sugar levels enable the body to generate energy more efficiently thus resulting in more fat burning.



A very underrated food which I actually like is the Oatmeal. The benefit of eating oatmeal is that is contains a high amount of fiber. Fiber is important to the body because it contains water which makes digestion easy. Apart from that it also dilutes certain chemicals in the body and prevents them from causing any harm.

Hate oatmeal? Then other foods that are quite rich in fiber are whole-grain products, fruits, vegetables, seeds, nuts, beans, and legumes. Soluble fiber is also important for your body so make sure you include foods such as apples, carrots etc. in your diet plan.



Powertec P-PR power rack review


Looking for a high end power rack? Then the best choice for you is the Powertec P-PR power rack. With thousands of positive reviews it is quite a highly rated power rack. Often found in top gyms it is an ideal power rack for home use as well.

It enables users to perform numerous exercises such as squats, rows, dead lifts and also various pressing movements and that is not all. Below in this article I have covered for you a few details that you should know about the Powertec P-PR power rack before buying it.

Warranty you get

Want a high warranty period? That is exactly what you get with the Powertec P-PR power rack. For the frame the warranty will last you a lifetime which is ideal and as for the parts you get a 2 year warranty and if you use this power rack well and you will never have to spend on repairing the power rack. The high warranty period ensures that the product is upto the expected standards.

Advantages of the Powertec P-PR power rack

Wondering the benefits of buying the Powertec P-PR power rack? Well one of the biggest advantages of this power rack is its strength which ensures it remain stable and durable making it safe to use even during high intensity workouts.

Apart from that it is also quite versatile. The versatility of this power rack ensures that you can perform loads of different exercises like squats, push ups, dead lifts and so on.

Have a house with a low ceiling? The low height of the power rack ensures it is ideal for such houses.



Do not have much room at home to keep a huge power rack? Well relax since the width of this power rack is just 44 inches. Its height is 83 inches and its length just 60 inches. This means that it not only provides you with enough exercising room but is also easy to store


Important features

Want a power rack with high end features? The Powertec P-PR power rack ticks all the right boxes and if you want to perform various barbell exercises this power rack the exactly what you need.

Apart from barbell exercises if you’re looking to perform chin-up and also dip bar exercises the in-built bar it comes with make it the ideal power rack for you. This power rack can take upto 1000 lbs not only on the rack but also on the chin up and dip bar provided.

Worried that the power rack might blow your budget? Well actually it won’t since the Powertec P-PR power rack is available for a mere $700 and considering the features you get with it, trust me it is a bargain.



What I think about the Adidas Adipowers weightlifting shoes


Looking for the best weightlifting shoes and are willing to spend for it? Then without a doubt the Adidas Adipowers weightlifting shoes is the best shoes for you.  Questioning why these shoes are the best? Well below in this article I have covered for you all the info you need to know about Adidas Adipowers weightlifting shoes.

Stability provided

Wondering what makes the Adidas Adipowers weightlifting shoes better than its competitors such as Reebok etc.? It’s actually the stability they provide. Weightlifting is an exercise that requires a quite a lot of aggression and wearing shoes that provide added stability is important because you would be lifting heavy weights and there is a high risk of picking up an injury.

Worried about injuring yourself by slipping? With the Adidas Adipowers shoes that will not be a concern. The neoprene covering on the tongue makes sure your feet remain solidly placed on the ground at all times.


Comfort provided

One reason why I like the Adidas Adipowers so much is because of the comfort it provides to me during heavy lifting. You can easily spend hours working out in these shoes with any problems but if you plan on going for a run wearing these shoes, avoid it.

Due to the high heel you will not find walking in these shoes as comfortable as you would with a soft shoe but as long as you are lifting weights you will definitely be comfortable.

Weight of the shoes

Need lightweight shoes? That is exactly why the Adidas Adipowers weightlifting shoes are perfect. This shoe has mostly been made of Synthetic polymer materials and thus you can be sure that the shoes are quite light especially when compared to some of the other shoes in the market.

The benefit of wearing light shoes during a workout is that it will enable you to move your feet quite quickly and if you have ever lifted weights I am sure you know the importance of quick feet movement.

Makes Olympic Lifts easier

Plan on doing Olympic as well as power lifts? The Adidas Adipowers weightlifting shoes are ideal especially for Olympic lifts which are quite difficult especially if you are a newbie because of the heavy weights and thus the right gear is very important.

The Adidas Adipowers shoes come with the perfect heal raise. Although it may take a few days for you to get used to the raised heel once you start using the shoes regularly you will understand its importance. Plan on doing a split jerk? With Adidas Adipowers weightlifting shoes it won’t be a problem.



The cost of the Adidas Adipowers is about $200. You may feel that is too much but keep in mind that these are the best weightlifting shoes in the market and provide comfort and stability like no other. Apart from that most professionals use these shoes and thus the cost is actually quite reasonable.




5 excellent weight lifting exercises for beginners

weight lifting

Having trouble deciding the best weightlifting exercise for beginners? Well I have the solution for you.  To help you out below in this article I have covered 5 basic weightlifting exercises perfect for all beginners. All these exercises mentioned here will help you enhance your strength, add mass to your body and burn fat.


A highly rated weightlifting workout especially for beginners is squat. Squats are very effective but are you wondering why most people avoid them? It is because it is one of the toughest exercises.

Squats help strengthen various muscles of the body such as your glutes, Quads, Hamstrings, abs, femoris etc. Squats also help raise testosterone levels in the body which in turn increases strength as well as size. For beginners 5 reps would be enough and once you are comfortable you can increase the weight and reps but do not leave squats out of your workout plan.



Another very common and effective weightlifting exercise for you is deadlift. Deadlifts like squats help increase testosterone levels in the body. A deadlift helps improve various muscles groups such as a Glutes, Hamstrings, Calves, Biceps, Forearms, Quads etc.

Want to avoid back problems while doing a deadlift? Just remember to keep your back straight at all times and keep the heavy bar near to your body. Deadlifts and squats alone will provide you with great strength and mass.


Bench Press

My favorite weightlifting exercise is the bench press. Most people use their bench press stats in order to show their strength. Although not as effective as squats or deadlifts if your aim is to strengthen your upper body it is a perfect workout for you.

Bench press can strengthen various muscles in your body such as Middle and Inferior Trapezius, Rotator cuffs, Core and so on.


Pull Ups

Looking to get better biceps? Start doing pull ups. A good thing about pull ups is that you will not need to lift any heavy weights instead it’s your that body acts like a weight. Pull ups will improve your strength as well as your endurance. It will also improve your anaerobic health.

If you are beginner and most gym machines are unknown to you then pull ups are a perfect way to start working out. All you need for this workout is perfectly placed bar which can easily be found in all gyms.


Military Press

Want stronger Shoulders, Delts, Core, Legs, Chest etc.? Then the military press is the ideal exercise for you. It is also commonly known as the overhead press and is a really excellent exercise if you are looking to add strength and develop more upper body mass.  Apart from strengthening your upper body it also stabilizes muscles.