South African Bodybuilding and Fitness

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Confused about fat loss, eating right and/or weight training and don't know where to begin? If you are new to the fitness lifestyle, start here.

Moderator: Sypher187


This thread will attempt to cover a broad spectrum of different, yet equally important, topics. Information ITT will be as succinct as possible to both minimize clutter and hit on what I personally consider to be some of the main points. The main target audience of this thread is new lifters/forum members. Others may find some useful sources scattered throughout. If it seems a little too simple or brief, this is for a reason. Most new members/current members dislike long walls of text....

DISCLAIMER: Any information contained in this thread by me is either supported by studies or my personal opinion. I will not be using a Harvard reference system as I have in my e-book as it’s a little too complex.


Training and Routines
Nutrition – Bulking/Cutting/Basics
Supplements – Basic Supplements

Training and Routines:

Welcome to the first section of this thread. Here, we will attempt to go over some of the very basics of training for new lifters and a few points for intermediates.
First and foremost, here are some key points to take on board:
For new and most intermediate natty lifters, a higher training frequency is preferable compared to a higher volume approach. What this means essentially is that (for example) squatting 3x per week is better than squatting once per week. As you get more advanced with training, a lower frequency approach is generally recommended. If you’re NEW to lifting (low strength*, minimal lean tissue, haven’t been training for long etc.) then you’re better off jumping onto a premade routine like Babylover’s modified SS. Adding in some WELL PLACED accessory work WILL make this program even better, IMO.
* Low strength is a somewhat subjective term in some cases. However, IMO, you should at least have a 2 plate bench, 3 plate squat and 4 plate deadlift under your belt. This is achievable in a shorter period of time than you may think IF you run a strength routine effectively AND keep diet and rest in check over an extended period of time.


Babylover’s Modified SS:
This would be my pick for new lifters over the original SS. With far more aggressive strength progression and the suggestion to add in some well-placed accessory work, this program is fantastic for new lifters.

All Pros Beginner Routine:
A simple yet very effective routine for those wanting something a little different to the regular strength routines. You CAN gain strength and size on this program, though strength gains will generally be a lot slower than on Babylover’s, for example.

Before anyone starts a flame war regarding ‘bodybuilding’ vs ‘powerlifting’, please note that I couldn’t give a damn. As a new lifter, you should be focusing on (a) higher training frequency and (b) learning the big 3 lifts. On a traditional ‘bro split’ i.e. Monday chest/bis, Tuesday Back/bis etc., you’re simply NOT getting enough frequency. Furthermore, a solid strength foundation is IMO, indispensable.

Sure you don’t have to lift ‘heavy’ to get big but it isn’t going to mean NO lean tissue growth, either. Adding in a small amount of well-placed accessory work to something like babylover’s SS should assist with bringing up lagging body parts and can assist with the core lifts of the program.
If you’re hell bent on NOT doing any sort of strength training like babylover’s or rippetoes, then see the first two options under intermediate routines.

If you require some tips on how to perform squats, bench or deadlifts (pulls), then please refer to the following thread:
This thread is mainly targeted to those running SS, however it can still be extremely useful for many others. A small bit of the information may be slightly outdated/broken links, however overall, it is rather useful.

In addition to this, please refer to the following videos and links:



Mark Rippetoe: Deadlift Set-up

Mark Rippetoe: Press review

Now, a lot of the time, you may be wondering whether or not what you're practicing in the gym is even correct. Sometimes you need to make some minor tweaks but can't see exactly where. Luckily there is a great thread to help you out! Simply take some footage and upload the video in this thread. Chances are, you'll get some friendly, helpful and quick advice:

***Official Form Check Thread***




Leg Press
Leg Curls
Calf raises


Bench press
cable crossovers
side laterals
tricep extensions


Wide pullups
t bar rows
barbell curls
db curls
rear delt work

Using a set up like:

Monday: Push
Tuesday: off
Wednesday: Pull
Thursday: off
Friday: Legs
Saturday: off
Sunday: off

^(Not enough frequency for my liking)


Week 1

Monday: Push
Tuesday: Pull
Wednesday: off
Thursday: Legs
Friday: off
Saturday: Push
Sunday: Pull

Week 2

Monday: off
Tuesday: Legs
Wednesday: off
Thursday: Push
Friday: Pull
Saturday: off
Sunday: Legs

Madcows 5x5:

Wendlers 5/3/1:
(Progression MAY be a bit too slow for some) -

PHAT (NOT a program, per se. More of a template) -

Again, there are other options out there, however IMO, any of the above are very good starting places if you’re and ‘intermediate’ lifter.

As an intermediate lifter, you should have a better understanding of how to perform the standard big 3 movements. If you're an intermediate lifter and you are creating your own routine and would like others to critique it for you, then please look into the following link:


CARDIO – Non-weightlifting specific issues

Cardio is very important whether you’re cutting or bulking. One of the best forms of cardio for cutting, IMO, is High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). This seems to give people really good bang for their buck in terms of improving cardio vascular health etc. When bulking, I highly recommend that you do some form of cardio. Improving cardiovascular health during a bulk isn’t going to hinder progress, so you may as well do some! 2-3 sessions per week on off days or some light cardio performed a few hours after lifting should be fine. Just make sure you consume a few extra calories if bulking. Low impact cardio such as a walk or light jog would be fine as examples, IMO.

If you’re looking to improve sporting performance, then please refer to the following link:
Last bumped by Sypher187 on Sat Nov 25, 2017 11:36 pm.

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