How can I build an “X” frame?
When one refers to an X frame in the world of fitness, he/she is describing a physique that highlights wide, rounded deltoids…flaring, V shaped lats…a small, tight waist…and, sweeping outer quads and calves. In professional bodybuilding I would say that Flex Wheeler, Chris Cormier, and Dexter Jackson best represent this type of build.
Unfortunately, displaying the characteristics of an X frame has much to do with genetics. Those that have this type of body are often born with the bone structure, muscle shapes, muscle attachments, and tiny joints that are required to achieve this look.
However, there ARE some exercises that can help in your endeavor to build the X frame. Keep in mind though that you still need to utilize a wide variety of exercises in order to create a proportionate and symmetrical physique. An X frame will do you no good unless all of your muscles are in balance and harmony with one another.Here are some “X” frame exercises:
-side deltoids…side laterals using dumbells and cables; wide grip upright rows
-V shaped lats…dumbell pullover; stiff arm pulldown; various chins and pulldowns
-sweeping quads…”toes in” leg extensions; close stance squats, hack squats, and leg presses
-sweeping calves…”toes in” calf raises; seated calf raise
-small, tight waist…(this really requires low bodyfat levels, achieved through proper diet and cardio training).
Also, do not do weighted side bends or any heavily weighted abdominal or oblique exercises. Emphasize higher reps with low resistance.
How long should I rest between sets?
The amount of time that you rest between sets is determined largely by your training goal and it’s requirements.When strength is the primary goal, it is generally best to lift weights in the area of 90 % of your 1 RM (1 rep max). In this case, rest intervals of 3-5 minutes are best.
When muscular hypertrophy is the primary goal, it is generally best to lift weights in the area of 70-85 % of your 1 RM. In this case, rest intervals of 2-3 minutes are best.
When looking to affect muscular endurance it is generally best to lift weights in the area of 50-60 % of your 1RM. In this case, rest intervals of 45-90 seconds are best.
When looking to affect changes in the nervous system, longer rest periods (4-5 minutes) are required for complete recovery of the ATP/Creatine Phosphate energy system.
When looking to affect metabolic changes, short rest periods of 1 minute or less are required. This will involve anaerobic glycolysis as the major energy source.
So you see, although the question of rest intervals seems like a simple one, it requires you to take a close look at what you are trying to accomplish. Rest between sets is an important, and often underestimated loading parameter.