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Built for Show: Four Body-Changing Workouts for Building Muscle, Losing Fat, andLooking Good Eno ugh to Hook Up (Anglais) Broché – 20 novembre 2008

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What a Guy Really Wants, and Why

I’m going to ask you a question and I want you to give it to me straight.I’ve heard all sorts of answers from all sorts of guys, so my B.S. detectoris finely tuned and has had quite a bit of practice. So I need you to levelwith me when you answer this question:

Why do you want to work out?

Why does any guy want to work out? Why train with weights at all?If you said “to lower my cholesterol levels,” “to touch the rim,” or “to preventosteoporosis later in life,” I’m not buying it. There’s nothing wrong with thosebenefits, and I’m sure you’ll achieve them from the workouts I’ve designed. Butcome on. You don’t lift because you’re worried about your health or your performancein pickup basketball games.

You work out so you can increase your chances of hooking up. That meanshaving the kind of physique that looks good in clothes and looks even betternaked.

I’ll accept variations on that answer. Like, “I go to the gym because my wifetells me to.” Or, “If I don’t stay in shape, my girlfriend will find someone whodoes.” I know a few guys who won’t even go to the grocery store if they don’tlook their best.

I get it. Some guys are born motivated, some achieve motivation, and somehave motivation thrust upon them. But at the root of our motivation is an understandingthat, when all else is equal, the guy with the better physique gets the girl.The combination of well-developed muscle mass and minimal body fat (whatanthropologists mean when they report that the indigenous males of a particularregion are “jacked”) is a sign of reproductive fitness. It shows that you have moretestosterone than the next guy, even if you don’t. The more primed women arefor sex, the more they notice. (True fact: Published scientific research shows thatwomen are more attracted to the manliest men when they are ovulating thanthey are at other times in their menstrual cycle.) If you’re Tarzan, she’s game.

So let’s start this relationship with some mutual candor. I wrote this bookbecause nobody else did. There was a time, not long ago, when I wanted toknow more about building my body in hopes of accumulating more frequent fornicationpoints. I wanted exactly what you want: muscles that women notice.I couldn’t find that book, because it wasn’t yet written. Instead, I learned how toachieve the goal, and in the process became a very busy personal trainer. Then Iset out to write the book I always wanted to read.

That’s enough about me. Let’s talk about you.

Whether you’re thick or thin, you want the wide shoulders and chiseledtorso that women don’t just notice, they occasionally grab. You don’t wish bodilyharm on anybody, but you’d be flattered to know that the woman who justpassed you on the freeway risked soft-tissue damage when her head whippedaround to get a better look.

At a bare minimum, you want the most attractive women in your apartmentcomplex to see you as the go-to guy the next time they need some furnituremoved.

Now that we’ve cleared the air about why you want the body you want, let’stalk about something a bit more complex: Why don’t you have that kind of body already? I’m going to assume you’re familiar with the concept of working out. IfI were a betting man, I’d wager that most of you reading this work out regularly.But if you’re like most of the guys I see in gyms these days, you’re doing workoutsthat can’t possibly help you reach your goals.

Worse, I see some of the finest young men of my generation exercising in away that will take them further away from their goals. Some of the more sharp-tonguedmembers of my profession refer to commercial gyms as “fatness centers.”Health clubs encourage you to come in and mope your way throughuseless circuits on machines that only exist as marketing tools to make strengthtraining look “easy” to the newbies. They discourage you from working hard bymaking it relatively inconvenient to do the exercises that build the most musclemass. One gym chain on the East Coast even has a rule against grunting. I’m asopposed to gratuitous noise as anybody, but how do you push yourself to getstronger if you have to worry about getting kicked out of the damned gym justbecause an exertion-related sound involuntarily escaped from your throat?

There are lots of ways to work out that don’t involve the risk of breathinghard. That’s why the health-club chains want you to do high-repetition, low weightcircuits on their shiny exercise machines. You won’t build the body youwant with those workouts, but the owners of the health clubs don’t care. They’rehappy to see you waste your time, as long as your account is paid in full.Frankly, though, I couldn’t care less about people who want results withouthard work. I’m more concerned with the guys who work hard but don’t ever getthe results they’ve earned. I see a lot of these lifters falling into three distinctcategories:


These are the guys who “blast their biceps” with thirty-two different exercises,following the workouts of the pro bodybuilders they read about in themagazines. They never ask if their biceps need to be blasted at all, much less withthirty-two exercises. Result? Their muscles get more blood-engorged than a tick with a rather serious glandular problem, but once the blood drains back out oftheir biceps the result is . . . deflating.


Remember the workout program you did in high school, back when you puton twenty pounds of solid muscle your senior year, when you made third-teamall-conference? Your muscles sure as hell remember. That’s why you haven’t gottenany stronger since high school. It was probably a great workout (althoughI’ve seen some pretty crappy programs designed by high school coaches). Still,no matter how well designed the program was, a body will make only so manyadaptations to any one system of training. Without variety, there’s no challenge.Without challenge, there’s no progress.


It’s great to be open-minded about new ideas in training. But it can go toofar. The smartest, most successful trainers I know make endless fun of the peoplebalancing on Bosu balls while attempting to lift weights that are too light to putmuscle on the glandular tick I mentioned a moment ago. (A Bosu ball is half ofa rubber ball on top of a plastic platform. Consider yourself lucky if you’ve neverencountered one.) Unless you’re training to be an acrobat, it’s far better to workout with one or both feet on the floor, since that’s the way you use your musclesin real life.

Most guys I see end up doing workouts that are hybrid versions of all thepitfalls I just described. It’s not that they don’t have enough information. Betweenbooks, magazines, and the Internet, there’s more information than ever.And if it was as good as it claims to be, we’d all be ripped to shreds and warmingup on the bench press with five hundred pounds.

The information itself is often the problem, especially when it comes fromthe wrong sources: muscle magazines, misinformed personal trainers, Hollywood“trainers to the stars” . . . sometimes the stars themselves pretend to be fitnessexperts. The truth is that most “fitness experts” have no idea how to getactual results for actual humans.

That’s why a typical guy’s workout looks something like this:

STEP ONE: Walk into gym.

STEP TWO: Bench-press, incline bench-press, dumbbell bench-press,dumbbell incline bench-press, hop on a treadmill.

STEP THREE: Try to impress the girl on the machine next to you byflexing your pecs while you run.

STEP FOUR: Go home alone and cry.

STEP FIVE: Return to the gym the next day, only instead of twenty-foursets of chest exercises, you do twenty each for your biceps andtriceps. And instead of flexing your pecs while you run on thetreadmill, you flex your arms, making you look like you’reauditioning for a remake of Robocop.

That’s why I wrote Built for Show. If you have the motivation and desire, youdeserve a program that shows you how to reach your goals, step-by-step. You deservea system that makes efficient use of your time and energy.

I hope you get a little more knowledgeable about training when you readBuilt for Show. (I know I got a lot smarter writing it. You never know what youdon’t know until you try to verify the things you think you know.) And I’m sureyou’ll get a lot of benefits that don’t matter much to you now. You’ll build strongerbones, lowering your risk of osteoporosis. You’ll ramp up your metabolism,making it easier to keep body fat from returning, or from accumulating in thefirst place. If you have some nagging little injuries, you’ll probably find they becomea lot less bothersome.

All of those are perfectly nice side effects, like going on The Price Is Right and winning a coffeemaker as a consolation prize when you were hoping for theconvertible Mustang. My guess is that you wouldn’t be very consoled. But if youwon the grand prize, you wouldn’t complain about finding the coffeemaker inthe backseat.

Are you ready to go after that grand prize?


I’ll get into this in much greater detail in Chapter 7, but right now you’reprobably curious about what you’ll be doing to get built for show. My yearlongworkout system is divided into four seasonal programs:

Fall: I hope most readers will start here, especially those who haven’t yet spenta lot of time in the weight room. These workouts introduce you to the most importantexercises, like squats and deadlifts, and focus on building a base ofstrength and muscle mass while providing enough of a training stimulus to workoff a little fat in the process.

Winter: Here you’ll focus on building pure strength, which also packs muscleon the places where women will notice it.

Spring: The goal here is to continue building your strength and muscle sizewhile also making your workouts more challenging. So you’ll improve youroverall conditioning and athleticism while burning off some fat and getting yourbody ready for display.

Summer: Now you’ll seriously attack whatever remaining fat you have withmore technically complex exercises and tougher workouts. You’ll also get to dosome curls and extensions to put the finishing touches on your physique.The system is modular, so you can start with any program that suits yourneeds and is compatible with your current abilities. I encourage most of you tostart at the beginning and continue for a year. It doesn’t matter if you end upwith your “summer” body in October or April; once you’re built for show you’llreap the benefits any day of the year.

Présentation de l'éditeur

Every guy is looking for an edge, some way to get single women his age to notice him more than they do now.

Unfortunately, most guys have absolutely no idea what kind of body automatically flips a girl's attraction switch. Nate Green does.

Built for Show is the first fitness book to address young men on the prowl. It’s not just written for them; it’s written by one of them. Green, who’s just twenty- three years old, is already a veteran fitness professional who’s been quoted in Men’s Health and Maximum Fitness magazines. Green offers four twelve- week workout programs, each with a seasonal theme. The fall and winter workouts add muscle size and strength that’ll show even under layers of clothing. The spring and summer workouts burn fat and chisel the showpiece muscles—creating a lean, cut, beach-ready physique.

But Built for Show is more than just a workout book. It also provides:

· Realistic nutrition advice to feed the muscles and starve the fat without breaking the bank or spending hours in the kitchen
· Tips on dressing right, looking the part, improving your social status, and settling into your new lifestyle
· Quick ways to assess posture, with useful exercises to fix flaws and improve self- presentation, no matter the situation.

The detailed programs include over fifty exercises, illustrated with over one hundred original photos.

Neither a weight-loss guide nor a body- building manual, Built for Show instead reveals to guys exactly what they need to build the body they – and women – want.

Read Nate Green's posts on the Penguin Blog.

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Couverture | Copyright | Table des matières | Extrait | Index | Quatrième de couverture
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Amazon.com: 48 commentaires
25 internautes sur 26 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Nate covers all bases 3 décembre 2008
Par Eric - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
Bought this book based on Nate Green's reputation, and was a bit skeptical due to the title...particularly the "hooking up" part. I understand the marketing angle though, so I went ahead and bought it for the training program alone. What I got was a lot more...

Training - The Cake
As expected, this book lays down "the fundamentals" that the athletes follow, but most common gym-goers ignore. The program is not anything groundbreaking, but that's the point -- simple therefore effective. More important than the "what" is the "how" and "why" which Nate explains thoroughly without getting too scientific. It's enough for you to explain to a buddy without a) looking like a dork and b) seem condescending. The most unique thing about the program for me was breaking it into Fall/Winter/Summer/Spring and programming accordingly. So your Fall/Winter are more hypertrophy/strength based -- while your spring/summer are more fat-loss based. Makes complete sense! Another unique find was the "garage variation" of each exercise in case you don't have access to a gym. Small but very practical detail that will help many.

Nutrition - Icing
Again Nate appeals to the target audience of single-guys well. The tips and info are all from the perspective of someone who may be budget-crunched but still health conscious. I wouldn't purchase this book for the nutrition tips alone, but it supplements the rest of the book well and Nate even recommends the Precision Nutrition system later in the book. Definitely worth reading the nutrition section for its unique perspective.

"Lifestyle" Tips - More GQ than Maxim.
Gotta admit, this was the biggest surprise to me of the entire book. This was the section I was very hesitant to read as I thought it'd be filled with "Maxim" type articles and tips. I was DEFINITELY surprised to find that it was much more GQ than Maxim. A thoughtful and interesting read regarding everything from dress (are your socks supposed to match your shoes or pants?) to self-confidence and approaching strangers (who happen to be attractive females?)

I'm beginning this program tomorrow and will update my review with some results as that is how this book will really be evaluated and measured. If you're aware of Nate Green already, this book is what you expected -- entertaining and informative. If you're unaware, I'd describe this book as a "GQ" type of twist on a great fitness book -- except you can actually afford everything.
19 internautes sur 19 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
A Woman's Perspective 15 décembre 2008
Par Holly Fraiser - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
While shopping for the Holidays I picked up Built for Show for my boyfriend, an avid gym go-er. It's something I know he'll enjoy, but I also wanted to read it myself because I found the author's approach to fitness unique. While I realize that by being a woman I'm not in the targeted audience, I wanted to know a man's perspective of what sets a guy apart. I was pleasantly surprised by what I found.

The book is formatted in a helpful and easy to read manner and the interjected humor makes it a good read for any audience, even female. Nate gives priceless advice all the way from nutrition and exercise to confidence building, and gives an especially unique perspective on the role of women.

I was a bit disheartened to see the only other woman's perspective on Built for Show provided a complete misrepresentation of the author's message. In no way does the author suggest that women are objects or that they should be used for sex. Throughout the entire book he makes an argument that women are ultimately the ones who decide whether or not a man will be successful at pursuing a relationship of any type. This is a rather empowering argument that contradicts any suggestion of women being sex objects and is quite the opposite of the orthodox portrayal of men being the initiators of sex and women simply being conveniences to satisfy them.

I hope that more women and men will invest their time and money into reading this book as it provides great fitness advice and an uncommonly seen inside to the benefits of being healthy that applies to audiences from every demographic. I'm excited for my boyfriend to read this book and I have a feeling we'll both be able to enjoy the benefits.
9 internautes sur 9 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
More than just show 14 novembre 2009
Par Truth - Publié sur Amazon.com
I've read this book twice now as I really wanted to follow the workout and nutrition program to the letter. After two weeks on the fall program I have really noticed a difference in my body. I was in pretty good shape before but now my body looks more defined and bigger (well my abs aren't bigger thank God). Which makes sense as the exercises Nate recommends cater specifically to working your biggest body parts (chest, shoulders, upper back, and legs) intensely with predominantly multi-joint exercises. You won't be doing chest fly's, lateral raises, leg curls, leg extensions, or calf raises. And here's where he'll lose a few people (and he nearly lost me when I read it) but you'll pretty much only be doing biceps curls and triceps extensions for six weeks out of the year long program. I nearly sent the book back when I read that.

However whatever concerns that I had initially have vanished, as my arms looks as muscular as before but bigger which hasn't happened for a while. The workout programs that Nate provides almost ensures that your body won't adapt. You'll be going back and forth from an upper / lower body split to whole body training. And if that weren't enough his set and rep variables (undulated periodization, super sets, giant sets, back-off sets, and everything in between) will shock your muscles to new growth during every phase of the program.

If there was one aspect of the book that I wish Nate would have provided more insight on was nutrition. He pretty much breaks down what foods to avoid and what types of foods to eat but had this book had a meal plan and recipes to follow I would have rated it five stars. Nate doesn't come across as the type of guy who gets all bent out of shape about the small stuff so I assume most of the meals he eats would be more practical and useful than what you usually see with these kind of books.

Unlike other fitness books though Nate's advice goes outside the gym and kitchen to such diverse topics as clothing, style, and presentation which surprisingly he succeeds at. As stated by other reviewers his tips and recommendations in these regards are spot on and not as crude or overly macho as you would expect with the title of the book. What really stands out in this book though is Nate's sense of humor which really made the book better than your average fitness text and made it more personable and easier to relate to.

All in all this is a good book that I would highly recommend. It doesn't cover quite all the topics in as specific detail as I would of liked (nutition mostly) but his reading recommendations have pointed me in the right directions to have whatever remaining questions I have answered.
4 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Very good book but specifics are missing 16 juin 2009
Par Johnny Handsome - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
I bought this book two weeks ago, read through it, and have started on the first workout program Nate's recommended. I have to say it's well-written and organized in a very easy-to-read manner. It should not take you more than 2-3 days to finish it. The hard part is understanding the breakdown of the workouts themselves. It gets complicated trying to figure out which set-rep combination you need to use on a particular day. I e-mailed him about this but he has not gotten back to yet. Once you start on his program you will understand what I am talking about, because he employs a method called "undulating periodization".

Nate's information is general enough for us to understand why we wants us doing something a certain way. His explanation on exercise form is good and tells us what NOT to do, which is key. I was somewhat disappointed for a couple of reasons though: first, he doesn't really get into one of the key tenets of muscle-building - which is the principle of progressive overload. Other literature will say that there always needs to be that one set in an exercise which you go all out and push the muscle past its previous threshold. Some people will even venture to say that any sets past this "all-out" set is useless and a waste of energy. I would have liked some more explanation on this theory. Secondly, I would have wanted some information on stretching and preventing injury. Nate does show use mobility exercises, but I would have liked some info on post-workout stretching and such.

Overall, this is a very good book. Nate may be young, about the same age as me, but he seems to know his stuff. I suggest getting this and reading other stuff out there as well, such as Vince Delmonte's "No Nonsense Muscle Building".

EDIT -- 06/20/09

It's been a full two weeks since I have gone on Nate's program and there are some caveats you should be aware of:
1. If you are in the least bit top heavy, the T push-ups he recommends you doing for joint mobility may do more harm than good. I've done them for every workout as a warmup and both my shoulders feel like they are about to fall off - elbows and shoulders are cracking/popping now. Shoulders especially feel very weak. Read below for more..
2. The neutral grip shoulder press may also do more harm than good. I find it puts a lot of strain on your anterior shoulder area. Everyone's body is different so if this feels like it's hurting you, then go back to your regular overhand grip.
3. The front squats he recommends you doing will put a lot of strain on your wrist area. Again, if you find your body is not tolerant of that type of exercises's range of motion or flexibility, stop it.

There is a common pattern here: Nate recommends a lot of lesser-known exercises (e.g., Bulgarian split squat, goblet squat, dumbbell hang snatch, etc.) - maybe he wanted his program to stick out from the rest of the books out there, or maybe he truly believes they will work. All I can say is that you need to listen to your body anytime you go through someone's program. If your body is telling you to stop, then stop doing that exercise, evaluate why, revise the form, and if it still hurts then don't do it anymore. The last thing you want is an injury. I will definitely take some of Nate's principles and apply them to my workout, but I think I will go back to my original routine and make some modifications. I've found it has worked for me in the past, the only reason why I never got real results was due to my nutrition.

My weekly routine goes something like this:
Monday - Chest (three exercises), triceps (1-2 exercises), abs (2-3 exercises)
Tuesday - 30-60 minutes of high intensity interval training
Wednesday - Back, biceps, abs
Thursday - 30-60 minutes of high intensity interval training
Friday - Shoulders, legs, abs
Saturday - 30-60 minutes of high intensity interval training
Sunday - off

p.s. - I am no fitness expert but no slouch either - 6'3", 200 lbs, played football in high school and college.
2 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Review from someone who did the entire year-long program 29 novembre 2013
Par John Ennis - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
Several years ago, at the age of 34 and following a series of traumatic life events, my weight had dropped to 132 pounds (I'm 5'11''). When I started to date the woman who would eventually become my wife, and I found out that her last boyfriend had been in the military, I thought it would be a good idea to get in better shape despite her protests to the contrary. That decision led me to purchase Built for Show, and I credit Nate Green for teaching me the basic of how to actually train in the gym. The book contains a year-long program that starts with a kind of warm-up phase in the Fall (it doesn't really matter what the season actually is when you start), progresses in to a bulking phase in the Winter, builds more general fitness in the Spring, and then finishes with a cutting phase in the Summer. It took me about 18 months to complete the program due to travel and injuries, but I stuck with it and I can say that it really did change my life. Upon completion of the program I was about 165 pounds and much more physically capable than I had been at 132. And my (now) wife had to admit that I looked a lot better.

Summary: Great book for someone who's just getting into working out.

Pros: Nate is engaging and funny, so you feel you have a training partner in the gym. The workouts are fun and well-designed. I liked the focus on full-body training and functional fitness. Having completed Built for Show, I'll never work out without using some sort of program again - it's a much more effective and interesting way to train than going to the gym and just doing whatever. And I thought the life-style tips were entertaining and somewhat helpful. In the end, the key to attracting women is actually being the kind of man that women want to be with, and Nate gives some reasonable advice on that front.

Cons: Some of the workouts (especially in the Winter) really did take too long, and the Summer workouts were so intense that I developed heart palpitations from over-training (they went away once I broke the workouts in half and did four half workouts a week). I also think that even more focus could have been put on the form of the exercises. I hurt my lower back and neck on a few occasions, so maybe insisting that readers meet with a trainer at the start of each phase to go through the movements for that phase would have been a good idea.

Next steps: Following Built for Show, I used Huge in a Hurry for about six months and got up to 187 pounds. This essentially required force-feeding myself (some days eating/drinking up to 10,000 calories). Although I thought I was a little overweight, I received many compliments and it changed the way I thought of myself. After using an assortment of other routines, none of which I would particularly recommended, I found P90X and now I will only ever train at home. It's just too convenient. The downside of the home training though is that it can be harder to lift heavy weights, and my weight has now dropped all the way down to 155. BUT, I am a ripped 155 and very happy with how I feel and how my body moves. So, in the end it's been a journey, and I credit Nate Green for helping me get started. Thanks Nate!
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