Bodybuilding 101 Featuring Cody Montgomery

This basic but brutal plan for beginners is your blueprint to a total-body overhaul.


So you’re not as jacked as any of the guys at your gym—including the dude behind the desk. Follow this road map to massive strength and size gains and you can be. It won’t be easy, and results won’t appear overnight, but stay the course and the goal is 100% attainable. The catch? It’s on you to execute the game plan we’ve put together. That includes following the workout plan; forcing yourself to train when you’re dog tired; eating clean; and pushing yourself to finish when all you can think about is throwing in the towel.

Now, we’re sure you have questions, such as, Which exercises are the best? How many reps and sets should I do? What’s the quickest way to see improvements? And you’ll get answers, courtesy of nationally ranked bodybuilder John Meadows, C.S.C.S., and his hand-tailored training method, Mountain Dog.

Meadows’ program removes the guesswork and omits training elements that simply won’t produce results. Whether you want to look the part or eventually compete onstage, set aside the next six months to transform yourself from a beginning wannabe to a full-blown bodybuilder.

While most beginner programs focus on compound moves, such as the Big 3—bench press, squat, and deadlift—performed with heavy weight and low reps, Meadows feels that neglects a necessary component of becoming a bodybuilder: the mind-to-muscle connection. Mountain Dog training focuses on maximum muscle growth (hypertrophy) by using isolation exercises performed on machines as a method of developing this all-important link.

“Isolation exercises develop powerful neuromuscular innervation and neural drive, aka the mind-to-muscle connection, by placing mental and neurological focus on a targeted muscle group,” Meadows explains. “If you cannot contract a muscle in isolation, you’ll never be able to fully contract it in a compound movement.”

We’re not scoffing at compound exercises or strength. Both are necessary, and Mountain Dog training utilizes them. Training for size requires specific intensity techniques and varying sets and reps to stimulate growth. “By using intensification techniques and effective execution of reps, you’ll not only create an opportunity for muscle growth but also greater potential for strength gains on compound exercises,” Meadows says.



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