By Coach Juan Rojas
How often do you see somebody with a fantastic upper body and a pair of legs that are hidden behind a baggy children's sized pair of pants?
Oftentimes, individuals struggle greatly with building up their lower body. This is the main reason why I constantly have people come up to me to help them build their legs up. Sometimes they want to finally have the confidence that they have always wanted while wearing shorts, or some are very serious about having a great pair of legs at their next bodybuilding competition.
From working at gyms for nearly a decade, and helping hundreds of people reach their fitness goals, there are a few common mistakes I constantly see people committing when it comes to building their legs.
Here are the most common ones:
1. Not training hard enough.
2.Training too heavy.
3.Training too light.
4.Training too fast.
5. Not picking the right exercises.
6. Not focusing on mobility and the smaller muscles.
7. Not properly programming your routine.
8. Not listening to your body.
If you want to read more in depth about these mistakes you can click here.
I also recently held a seminar in Cambridge, Ontario outlining EXACTLY what you need to know in order to build your legs up. You can view some of the highlights below. Do not miss your chance to build the legs you have always wanted!
By Juan Rojas
Do you know what separates the people who are successful in this world and those who are not? It isn’t possibly the fact that they are a different biological breed than yourself. We are all humans, and we all are given similar bodies when we are born. It isn’t the fact that those who are successful are born into a privileged wealthy family. Plenty of people who are successful in many avenues of life are raised in the streets with a very rough upbringing. Could it perhaps be luck and that these individuals were just at the right place at the right time when an opportunity came along? Many people can view it this way, but what they do not see is all the previous failures this individual has had. Let me tell you what sets the people who are successful apart from those who are not. Their mindset. More specifically, their Monster Mindset.
Those who you may consider the most successful, no matter what your definition of success may be, are individuals who have perfected a system to have a mindset that allows them to crush their goals. As human beings, we are naturally drawn to doing things the easy way, to be satisfied with mediocrity as opposed to stepping outside our comfort zone. If you want to be successful, you must develop this mindset needed in order to achieve your goals. Developing this mindset does not come overnight, it takes work and practice. If it was something fast and easy to do, everybody would have the Monster Mindset. The beauty of it is, once you develop your Monster Mindset, you will accelerate your results in every aspect of your life. From the gym, to your relationships, to your career etc.
Think about some of the most successful personalities over the last few decades. Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sylvester Stallone, Michael Jordan, Donald Trump and many more. These men have all faced difficulties at one time or another, but their Monster Mindset is what sets them apart. You have the power in your hands to be as successful as them.
Here are a few ways you can develop your Monster Mindset:
-Begin phasing out negativity in all aspects from your life. Anything that gives you negative thoughts or feelings of demotivation and laziness must be removed. This could be family, friends, a certain activity, certain music, a job you hate etc.
-Begin improving the relationship with yourself and start viewing yourself like you are best friends. Learn yourself as much as you can, know how you react to certain things, know your strengths, know your weaknesses etc. From this you can build your self-confidence.
-Everyday do something that enriches your life and that brings you one step closer to your goals. You can ensure this by creating a planner and planning out what you will do daily to continue developing yourself.
- Begin to meditate daily and visualize success. The body cannot go where the mind has not been. You must see success and believe in yourself. You have to see it as reality. One of the best quotes out there is “he who thinks he can, and he who thinks he can’t, are both usually right.”
-Take care of not only your mental state by getting rid of negativity but of your physical state by getting rid of negative fuel. Eat the proper foods required to operate at a higher level of consciousness. If you are not giving your body the proper nutrients, you will never think like a successful individual.
These are just small things that you can begin doing in your everyday life in order to improve your mindset. If you want to fully develop your Monster Mindset though, you have to read The Monster Mindset by Wilson Meloncelli, Jon Andersen and myself. We wrote this book together because we all came from an unmotivated background. We were all living in mediocrity at one point and we got to a point of unhappiness that was so bad we needed to make a change. Now the 3 of us are living out our greatest life and reaching success like you couldn't imagine. Look at Jon Andersen for example, the man has been a professional strongman, a professional wrestler and is currently one of the best IFBB Professional bodybuilders in the world! This book will absolutely change your life and will have you wishing you would have started sooner! Get ready to live out your greatest life!
For less than a lunch at Mc Donald's, you can begin to change your mindset and take the first steps towards success. The book can be found at the following link: http://djjohnnied.monsterms.hop.clickbank.net
By Juan Rojas
Most of you reading this got into fitness one way or another and had to learn the basics of training, nutrition and supplementation. This could have been through personal research, through a book, or through a personal trainer. As you learned more and more, chances are there was somebody whose physique, strength and/or capabilities you admired. Somebody who inspired you to be your absolute best and who showed you that with hard work you can achieve your goals. Oftentimes, the people who inspire us are not necessarily people we see often. Thanks to modern technology, they are often people we learn from through avenues like YouTube, Instagram and magazines. Can you think of one person you have always admired ever since you began your fitness journey? Now imagine that you got to hang out with them and train with them for a few days! Well, that was one of the things I was able to scratch off of my bucket list.
Earlier this month I got the opportunity to be able to train with somebody who I have looked up to greatly ever since I started what I consider one of the most important journeys of my life. When I was 18 years old I became fascinated with bodybuilding. I was a very overweight kid all my life and at 17 years old had developed a severe eating disorder and was 140 lbs. at 5’7”. As I began to obsess with this beautiful sport of bodybuilding, I stumbled upon articles of a man they called Mountain Dog. He opened my mind to everything that I was doing wrong with my training and nutrition. I was under the impression that to put on muscle you had to eat endless amounts of protein and all the food in sight, that supplements were the most important part of seeing results and that moving weights was what made bodybuilders look the way they were. John’s articles and videos showed me that it was quite the opposite. That the body could only utilize so many nutrients at a time, that the quality of your food matters and that contracting muscles under heavy loads is what stimulates growth.
Throughout many years I have admired and looked up to John as he is known as a great family man, business man, bodybuilding coach, bodybuilder and human being. I have had the privilege of working with John in the past writing some magazine articles and I had the privilege of learning from him and world renowned coach James Seals Sr. as I trained in Ohio for a few days. These 2 gentlemen were kind enough to allow me to join them in their intense training sessions at American Barbell and I could not be more grateful. They even asked me what body parts I wanted to train and rearranged their whole training schedule around what I needed to work on. It was one of the best experiences of my life. We got to absolutely demolish some weights and I even got to spot John pressing 135 lb. dumbbells!
Apart from just training with John and James for a few days, I got to meet the John Meadows that is behind the social media and magazine cameras. He was a true gentleman and somebody I look up to even more now. We got to have the best sushi I have ever had in my life at FuGu Sushi and some delicious lemon ricotta pancakes from First Watch. A small breakfast restaurant in Ohio that offers locally grown foods prepared in a delicious manner.
John has been a huge influence in my life for almost a decade now and here are the 5 most valuable things I have learned from him:
1.Persistence mixed with hard efficient work will lead you to greatness. John did his first bodybuilding show at the age of 13 and had the dream of being an IFBB pro bodybuilder ever since that age. John kept coming extremely close to winning his pro card in many occasions. He could have quit at one of these points, but he kept pursuing his passions and got to obtain his IFBB pro card and even place extremely well at a few professional shows.
2.You can be a bodybuilder and still be successful at many other things in life. Oftentimes people think that to be a professional athlete you cannot do anything else in life. That your entire life must be devoted to this and you cannot have a family, a career, a job etc. John has had and continues to have an amazing family, many successful businesses and still manages to be an amazing pro bodybuilder.
3.You should not focus your attention on factors you cannot control. You think you have bad genetics? That you can’t burn fat, or you can’t build muscle? Who cares, because you can’t control this. You have to play with the cards that you were dealt and make the best situation out of your current state of affairs.
4.Listen to your body. So many people neglect listening to their body and they just continue to push until their body breaks down. Listening to your body is crucial in order to live a long healthy lifestyle and be in the best possible shape. I learned from John that if you are training, and an exercise is not feeling correct, or you feel like you might get hurt doing something, to move on. Your body tries to tell you many things but you have to listen to it.
5.Always be kind to others. If you take a look at John’s social media accounts or if you ever send him a message, he is always willing to help. John takes the time out of his day to educate others on health, training and nutrition. Many people including myself will never forget this and this fuels me to help others as well who may ask me for help.
Getting to spend time with John Meadows training and talking about life is an opportunity I will always be grateful for. Make sure to check out the training videos below! The amount of things I learned in terms of my fitness journey and overall life are priceless to me. Make sure to check out John on Instagram at @mountaindog1 , on YouTube as MountainDog1 and his website where he was an amazing subscription service at MountainDogDiet.com.
By Coach Juan Rojas
Losing fat can be a very challenging journey. Many have gone years and even decades with living a lifestyle that is less than optimal for proper health and body composition. Oftentimes it takes years to get a large amount of fat off of their body. If it took you years to become severely overweight, it can take a long time as well to lose all that stored energy and coach your body to operate at it's highest capacity.
It makes me extremely happy when I see individuals begin their fat loss journey because I was once there as well. I grew up extremely overweight all my life and at 15 years old I decided to make a change. It was very tough at times to change my lifestyle habits but one step at a time I was able to lose 90 lbs. From there, I made even bigger goals and now I have it set as a goal to be one of the best professional bodybuilders in the world. But along the way, I faced times where it was extremely difficult to continue burning fat. It seemed like I was doing everything right but the fat was just not coming off. Many clients also come to me with similar issues and with the proper guidance and coaching they are able to resume their fat loss and strive towards the physique they want.
Many times people think that the solution is simply to do more exercise and cut calories more. If we were machines, a linear approach like this could probably work, but we are complex creatures with so many variables that the way we respond to things can vary so much between individuals. Although you might think you are on the right path, oftentimes individuals are baffled when they learn that something they did not think was a big deal can actually be what is blunting their fat loss. Here are the top 5 things that people might not realize hold them back from seeing results with their fat loss:
1. Snacking- This is one of the biggest culprits. You might be eating the perfect 4-6 meals a day whether given by your coach or if you are doing your own diet, but if you are snacking this will hold you back. It is very easy to pack on a few hundred extra calories a day by taking little bites here and there of certain foods. The worst part about snacking is that once it becomes a habit, it is very hard to break. I suggest if you are going to snack, have snacks planned just like you would your meals and make sure that they can fit into your nutrition program. Snacking mindlessly on whatever is "around" can be what is holding you back.
2. Sauces- It is very easy to turn a low calorie nutritious meal into a super high calorie meal with the wrong amount of sauce. Sauces like bbq or mayo based sauces can be very high in sugar and fat and could be adding a lot more calories to your day than you think. Not to mention, they are not very filling. Try to find alternatives and maybe even make your own low calorie sauces if you decide you want to use them.
3. Not Meal Prepping- Poor Preparation Prevents Poor Performance. There are many people who do not take time in their week to prepare their meals and this only leads to failure. When your meals are not prepared it is very easy to eat out. Even if you eat out something that you feel is somewhat nutritious, keep in mind that restaurants do not have the goal in mind of keeping you true on your fitness path and fat loss journey. Their goal is to feed you something delicious so that you come back to eat there.
4. High Inflammation- There are certain foods that can cause inflammation in certain individuals when eaten. This inflammation makes your body very unhappy and can stall your fat loss through different mechanisms, including down regulation of certain hormones.Some foods that can cause many people issues with inflammation are foods that contain dairy, gluten, peanuts etc. I am not saying you should completely block these things out, but it is dependent on a person by person basis.
5. Over Restriction- How often do you see somebody who wants to begin their fat loss journey going from eating fast food everyday to eating only fish and vegetables 4 times a day because they plan on losing 30 lbs. in 30 days?
I see this scenario all the time! These individuals that over restrict not only end up feeling miserable with low energy levels and decreased performance, but they also put their health at risk. Not only is their physical health affected but so is their mental health. These are the individuals who will follow everything perfectly for 2 weeks and then binge for 2 days because they cannot take the extreme diet anymore. They do a combination of slowing down their metabolism and overeating junk for a few days. They end up even unhappier with more fat on their body and a potential eating disorder.
Although there are many more reasons why you might be feeling stalled in your fat loss journey, these are some that I commonly see. This is why it is important to reach out to a professional who can help you create your meal plan and overall fat loss program. Stop wasting time and kick start your fat loss goals again!
With the pursuit of achieving the best possible physique and helping hundreds of clients do the same, Juan Rojas has dedicated his life to finding the best strategies for transforming human bodies. Constant research, trial and error and continous education in the exercise physiology and nutrition field, Juan Rojas thrives off finding the most efficient ways to transform your body and live a happier and healthier lifestyle.