If you look at the majority of actors in Holly wood, on screen superheroes, and male models…
They all have one thing in common, that maximizes aesthetics in their physiques…
They have a solid V taper.
It is the universal sigh of attractiveness in men.
For those of who aren’t quite familiar with what exactly a V taper is, let me quickly get you up to speed.
V Taper– is a phrase that originates from the bodybuilding world and is used to define the shape of ones torso, where it resembles the shape of the letter “V.” Common attributes of a V-taper consist of full shoulder development followed by solid lats, down to a narrow and slim waistline.
Assuming your nutrition is on track, and you’re training correctly.
If you were to ask me :
What is the single most important muscle group to focus on to maximize your physique’s overall appeal and aesthetics?
I wouldn’t tell you It would be by focusing on your triceps, traps, or quadriceps.
Although it is important to train all muscle groups to prevent muscle imbalances, there are two muscle groups in particular that most guys lag in development.
If you achieve solid level of development in the following muscle groups, you will have successfully achieved the v shaped torso that almost all Hollywood actors and male models have.
The two Muscle Groups are:
Your shoulders and back.
If your focus is on developing these muscle groups, and you pair it with an enjoyable nutrition – diet template to get lean and trim up your waistline…You’re well on your way to enhancing your v-taper. This will take your aesthetics up a notch and will really make your physique stand out! Just about any clothing you decide to wear will look fantastic.
In this article, I’m going to be showing you:
- How to achieve solid shoulder and back development
- What Lifts to focus on improving to achieve the desired development for the muscle groups. (Shoulders and Back)
- How to build the perfect amount of muscle, without overdoing it.
- Nutrition Strategy to get lean, to further enhance the overall look of your V-Taper.
- Free Fat Loss E Book for Plant Based Individuals, showing a diet template to get lean. (Vegan or Vegetarian)
So let’s get right into it!
1. Power of Weighted Chin Ups
So far, you know what muscle groups to focus on to enhance your v taper, which are your back and shoulders.
Lets first talk about building up your back.
So How do you build a solid back with the perfect amount of lat development, thickness, that stands out and enhances your V-shape?
Do you have to do a ton of lat pull down variations, t – bar rows and dumbbell rows?
None of those exercises I mentioned work nearly as well as an exercise I’m going to reveal to you..
It’s through weighted chin up and pull variations.
You see, if your goal is build a physique that resembles male model, or Hollywood actor, weighted chin up and pull up variations build the perfect amount of muscle on your back without over doing it.
Lets get you model like, and not beetle like! 🙂
Rather than do tons of back exercise variations in an effort to enhance the v shape in your physique, focus your attention on building up your weighted chin ups.
Once you get to where you can pull yourself above the bar and do your body weight easily, grab a dip belt and start adding weight to the belt! You can purchase one of Amazon for fairly cheap.
Typically women tend to struggle on this exercise, in that case I recommend working your way to body weight pull ups – chin ups or lat pull down.
Question that is commonly asked when discussing weighted chin ups among the plant based community is:
“Andi whats the best dip belt to do weighted chin ups with? Should I get belt X or belt Y?”
In my training, I use this dip belt.
Most people stay away from open chain exercises like the chin up – pull up variations and tend to lean towards machine work and lat pull downs for their back day. Nothing wrong with doing so, but they do not build your back as quickly and as effectively as weighted chin ups do!
Not only will you look bad- ass performing this exercise, you will also build incredible pulling strength. Along with the added benefit of building the perfect amount of muscle on your back, that enhances your v taper.
With chin ups there is absolutely no way to swing or use momentum, like most row and pull down exercise variations.
No way to cheat this movement or swing. Only you pulling yourself up, above the bar.
You’re essentially getting stronger by consistently adding more and more weight to the belt as you pull yourself above the handles.
Muscle is absolutely a by product of your strength, by you getting strong at this movement, your back will blow up!
Above is a picture a friend shot of me at the gym performing weighted chins! I don’t quite remember exactly how much weight I was pulling in the picture.
My estimate would be that I had 80 lbs hanging and performed that set for about 4-5 reps. My current max on chin ups is 90 lbs for 2 reps, and 77.5 lbs for 5 reps.
As you can see my v taper is very prominent from the picture above. Along with the supplementary shoulder development to further enhance my v shape.
I do not perform any variations of row or lat pull downs. Only 2-3 sets of weighted chin ups per week. This seems to be more than enough to maintain and even build my back.
Reason for me using neutral grip as oppose to a wider grip in the picture above is because I’m satisfied with my overall back size and would like to simply maintain it. I have found that when my lats gets any wider than that, I cannot fit into my favorite jackets! I don’t frequently hear about anyone else having this issue. 😦
Weighted chin ups are a powerful compound movement for building size on your back. Which is why I highly encourage you implement them into your training sessions, and watch your back blow up in a matter of weeks as you get stronger at them!
Goal to strive for, would be to build up to:
Half your body weight attached for 5 reps, and you will have phenomenal back developed period.
Lets say you weigh about 175 lbs, that would be 87.5 lbs hanging from you for 5 repetitions.
Building up to half your body weight on chin ups may seem impossible to you but with the right training protocol you can do it!
After adding weighted chin ups to your training and getting more advanced, you will inevitably run into a plateau.
If progress has come to a halt, I recommend switching to another variation for a few weeks.. Wider grip (pull up variation, hands away) to neutral grip, or underhand grip, and build back up.
Once you plateau on this new grip variation, switch back to the original variation and you should beat the plateau.
If you’re currently training five to six days a week, it will be difficult for you to build your chin ups to an elite level.
I recommend a low volume training approach to achieve this, training only to 3 – 4 days per week, each session being every other day.
This will result in incredible neural recovery and can hit your chin ups fresh continuing to beat your previous personal records. When you’re new to weighted chin ups you can expect to add 5 lbs to the belt each workout and 2.5 lbs to the belt as you get more advanced.
Reverse pyramid Training works spectacular with this exercise. If you’re not quite familiar with this style, reverse pyramid training is s a protocol where you perform your heaviest set first, when you’re completely fresh and then drop the weight down (“pyramid down”) to lighter weight for higher reps. (Proper warm up should be implemented to prevent injury)
If you weigh 175 lbs and your heaviest working set on chin ups is 55 lbs hanging from the belt, you would add those together, and your heaviest working set being a total of 230 lbs.
Take a look at the example below of how weighted chin ups and reverse pyramid training are incorporated together.
Weighted Chin ups with Reverse Pyramid Training, assuming an individual has a body weight of 175 lbs :
- Working Set #1 – 55 lbs hanging ( 230 lbs total working set weight. 55 lbs hanging from the belt + 175 lbs body weight ) (4-6) Rep Range
- Working set #2 – 35 lbs hanging – (210 lbs total working set weight. 35 lbs hanging from the belt +175 lbs body weight) (6-8) Rep Range
- Working set # 3 – 15 lbs hanging – ( 190 lbs total working set weight. 15 lbs hanging from the belt + 175 lbs body weight) (8-10) Rep Range
With reverse pyramid training, you start with your heaviest set first, drop the total weight meaning body weight plus the weight you have attached to the dip belt by 10% with each working set. By doing so, you’re also working in various rep ranges each set such as (4-6) (6-8) and (10-12)
You’re incorporating full rest periods between each of these working sets. (3-4 minutes) This is where reverse pyramid training differentiates from drop sets.
As another reminder, do not to forget to warm up before performing your heaviest set!
So far I’ve shown you one of the exercises, to enhance your v shape torso beautifully, along the style of training for you to be able to get strong at it!
You know how to build up your back, now lets move into the second part. Shoulders!
2. Power Of Shoulder Pressing
The second important muscle group to focus on to enhance your v-taper
and look more aesthetic overall is your shoulders.
Combining solid back development with well rounded shoulders enhances the overall aesthetics of your physique even further.
Most guys don’t put nearly as much focus on developing they’re shoulders, as they do with subsequent muscle groups.
Once you’re weighted chin ups are progressing, I recommend a variation of shoulder pressing.
- Standing Overhead Press (Reverse Pyramid Style)
- Seated Barbell Press (Reverse Pyramid Style)
- Seated Dumbbell Press (Reverse Pyramid Style)
Which all are great movements to get strong and train reverse pyramid style, same way I showed you how to do with the weighted chin ups!
I’m not suggesting you add all three of these movements into your training and do them one after another. Not at all.
Choose one of three exercises above and get stronger at it. Strive for weekly improvements on the exercise you choose
Once you start to plateau, and find that you can’t improve in either reps or weight then I recommend switching to another variation.
I typically spend about 6-7 weeks on each of the pressing variation and switch to another when I start to plateau.
As of recently I switched from seated barbell press to standing overhead press. I spent about 7 weeks progressing on the seated press and recently hit plateau, so I switched to the standing press variation.
A Strength goal to aim for on shoulder presses is to lift 0.7 – 1.0 times your body weight. When you get this strong at your shoulder press, you will have achieved solid shoulder development.
Getting stronger at shoulder press variation will account to about 75% of your overall shoulder size and growth.
The other 25% is with more volume based accessory work, for the lateral and rear sides of your delts.
I recommend including lateral raises and reverse flies in your training in higher rep ranges. This is for the fluid based sarcoplasmic hypertrophy.
When you’re getting stronger at the shoulder pressing movements reverse pyramid style along with accessory volume based work with lateral raises and reverse flies you will have built solid shoulders I assure you.
Now this is the piece of the piece of the puzzle many individuals from the plant based community, including myself have had a difficulty in.
Above I have covered the training portion of the equation that enables you to build and enhance your V – Taper. Its’ only fair we cover the nutrition side of the spectrum as well.
Although, many of you already know the importance of proper nutrition in addition to your training.
Keep in mind that if you’re putting on a ton of fat in an effort to put on muscle, you’re not getting an closer to achieving your desired v – taper look.
The goal is with nutrition is to get you leaner, and your waist slimmer.
This will tremendously enhance your v shape look.
If you’re not as lean as you would like to be, I recommend a diet template that’s easy for you to stick to. A nutrition protocol many of the members in the plant based community commonly use, myself included, is an Intermittent Fasting protocol.
I put together a guide for plant based folk who are interested in the intermittent fasting protocol in my “Herbivore Fasting Guide Book.”
I go into detail on how you can get lean as a plant based individual (vegan or vegetarian) using a strategic fasting protocol that makes losing fat and getting lean very enjoyable!
Get the Free Guide now, and get lean in an enjoyable way that so plant based individuals including myself are using right now!
Click below to start now and take another step at enhancing your v – taper!