Building Muscle: 1 Tip that’ll boost your strength (that you’ve probably never heard before)
If you’ve considered Occam’s Protocol, or the ‘forgotten third option’ splits as part of your approach, you might be thinking about building muscle, and getting stronger. In this article read about this hack that wasn’t mentioned in the book, that’ll help you squeeze out that last rep, and build extra strength as you do.
Maybe you’re thinking that there’s no more hacks that could possibly be applied to make a gym workout more efficient than Occam’s Protocol, but today you’re going to learn about one extra one that will help your lifts and build your strength.
This will also apply to you if you’re doing the ‘forgotten splits’ workout or if you’re doing other workouts that involve gripping weights (pretty much anything).
See, the interesting thing with the body, and the muscles, is that the muscles are all separate units. Though we might train them separately, say, with a bicep curl, muscles in fact work in chains around the body. The chains or ‘myofascial paths’ have been found by Thomas Myers and his team, who proved out the theory that there were uninterrupted lines of tissue that travel around the body, to help dissipate force and create a stronger system as a whole.
One such line is the tissue that runs from your heels, up the backs of the legs, through your back and up to the back of your head. That’s you ‘Superficial Back Line’. There’s more lines, including lateral and spiral lines, and more complex ones too. Each of them helps when you are moving weight around.
So how does this knowledge help you lift more, or create more strength? Well, quite simply, knowing that everything is linked helps because you’re able to put more force through those lines when you lift.
So, one example is in a squat, where there are multiple muscle chains involved, front and back of your body. You might know this as a ‘compound lift’, but that only makes us aware that more than one muscle group is involved. To understand these myofascial lines is to be aware that muscles are encased in ‘fascia’ tissue, and that this tissue joins with connective tissue across joints, to form these long, interrupted lines. That’s why you might feel some strain in your head when you squat with a heavy weight, or why you might feel a tweek under your heel when you do a cable woodchop.
Another example of how this can help in the gym, in your next workout, is in gripping. An Olympic lifting trainer once taught me to grip the bar strong, no matter what lift I was doing. It felt good, because it felt like I was switching my whole body on, but now I understand that I was in fact activating a full myofascial line, which otherwise may not have been upregulated (switched on) if I was too focused on one muscle group.
So, next time you’re doing a bench press, or a chest press, try gripping the bar a little harder. There’s a line that’s directly connected with your grip that follows up into the pec muscles, so you’ll actually be able to create more force through the area you’re wanting to train.
When you’re lifting, in any motion, think about what other parts of your body you can ‘wake up’ and how this might help deliver more strength thorugh the muscles you’re actively training.
You might be very surprised by the results.
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