3 MUST HAVE exercises for your back

img_2503 I would like to start off with a huge thank you and shout out to everyone that has shared my blog on social media and all that have supported it! It truly means a lot to me. Do me a favor and share or tell someone about this blog to keep the knowledge spreading to help others!

Now it is time to get to business, I have 3 great back exercises that will help you get the lean, strong looking back you always wanted. Not only will these exercises help get you a better looking back but this will help you develop a healthy back.

#1 on the list is dead lifts. The dead lift can scare a lot of people because they think that this exercise can lead to injury. This can be true, but only if you are not perfecting the form. If you do not know what a dead lift is or want to check your form, check out the Vault of Gainz page in the menu bar at the top and go to the BACK section. This exercise has many variations to help with different goals you may have, such as if you have trouble getting the bar speed off the ground or locking out the top of the rep. I will eventually have a post that will help you with these goals on the dead lift for those who want a stronger dead lift. This exercise in my personal opinion is one of the best lifts period. It can be a true test to see how strong an individual is from how many muscles are activated. Some of the benefits to dead lifts are:

  •   Improving your overall posture when done correctly as well as stability in the body
  • It can burn fat at a great rate when programmed correctly
  • It can increase hormone production and testosterone
  • Reduces depression
  • Improves grip strength
  • It will strengthen your back to support everything else


#2 on my list is a pull up. A pull up can be a hard exercise to achieve for all different body types, BUT it does not mean you are not capable of performing a slightly different variation to have the same benefits. A pull up will really target your latissimus dorsi (lats) which everyone wants developed. If you do not know how to perform a pull up or feel the need to check your form, check out the Vault of Gainz section on the blog and go to the BACK category. There you will also see lat pull downs which is a great variation if you can not quite perform a pull up just yet. You will find different variations to do so you can target the muscle a little different each time. Some of the benefits to pull ups are:

  • Builds solid muscle in the top portion of your back, especially the lats
  • Builds grip strength
  • It is a multi-joint exercise so you will build the back, biceps and even your shoulders
  • Many variations to do if you can not perform a normal pull up or to just have fun when training


#3 on my list are back rows. A back row can be easily incorporated into your training and have endless variations to target the muscle differently while making your training fun. I have these in the Vault of Gainz as well in different variations. The row will target just about your whole upper back depending on which variation you choose to do. Some of the primary muscles being hit will be lats, trapezius, teres minor and major, as well as your biceps. Some benefits to this exercise are:

  • Getting a strong, healthy back
  • Hit a lot of muscles at once
  • burns calories fast if programmed correctly


This is 3 must have exercises for your back. This article is my opinion based off of my knowledge and past 6-7 years experience. I have seen a lot of great benefits to having a health, strong back due to having these type of exercises put into my programming. Try some of these out in the gym and let me know how it works for you! If you have any questions or concerns, feel free to ask and I will answer to the best of my ability.



Thank you again for all of the support, I hope this helps you as mush as it has helped me!                   -Alex Costa-



0ae81dc1-5a9a-4703-a573-bdcfbf46068a I had a chance to attend a great fitness seminar last night at Fit Club Columbus. It was ran by Reebok, along with some of their professional sponsored athletes such as Cory Gregory, Silent Mike and Julie Foucher. I had a lot of wisdom and value shared to me by these 3. I did not write this to just share my experience but to also share a big lesson that is ESSENTIAL for being great in what you love. That lesson is to go learn from those who are doing it and especially SUCCESSFULLY doing it. This seminar was a great way for me to grow as a trainer and really gain more knowledge to use and teach to others.

Now again just because my passion evolves training doesn’t mean yours will. Lets say you dream of owning a pizza shop, there is not going to be a lot of seminars on how to do this haha so you will have to in a way, “make your own seminar”. When I say this, I simply mean go and find a local pizza shop that has had a lot of success. From there a good thing to do is go inside and ask who the owner is and if you can speak to him. A lot of times this will take some time because it is an owner and they are usually busy keeping track of different things for their business. MOST people ask once and if the owner is not there then they leave and never come back. If you want to become great in what you are passionate about then it is crucial that you leave messages, show up the next day or just simply ask for a business card to get in touch with him yourself. I know this may sound like you are annoying them but this is a step that so many people don’t do and that’s why they are stuck without an answer and sometimes a possible opportunity to have a mentor in this passion of theirs. It is all because they tried once and quit.

I believe that there is so much value when you go speak to someone or visit them and hear them speak about what they love doing IN PERSON. There is something about how they talk about this topic, you will notice even in their voice what it truly means to them. I absolutely love hearing about what people love doing in life and how they are impacted by this.

A big thing that people also neglect is “continued learning” after they find this passion and make it an income from it. If it is truly YOUR passion then why would you want to stop learning about it? I like to listen to anyone and everyone talk about fitness such as what they do in the gym and how it worked for them. I personally learn a lot from conversations like this whether its about a  new exercise they performed or a lift that may not work as good as you think. I always take any considerations I hear.

I hope you all find something that you would be fine waking up at 3 AM to do and staying up late to keep working at it, that’s when you know you love what you do.


As always, thank you for the support and keep getting better!                                                                                            Alex Costa


Have a plan A

alexs-cert I cannot explain the importance of having a plan. Not just a plan for what you and your buddies are gonna do this weekend or what you’re planning on having for dinner. I am talking about in life. Make a plan A and don’t look back because sometimes you won’t get a chance to have a plan B. This is where you step up to the plate and swing away.

I encourage you to write your plan down. Break it down if you need to almost like a task list. This is what I did on September 1st. I wrote down my plan on how I was going to make a change in my life and get certified to do what I love so I could help make a change in others lives. It is now November 23rd and you can see in the picture above that I succeeded in what I set out to do.NOT every time will be a win, remember that and keep fighting if that is the case. I began by writing a 5 step plan, and #1 on the list was to sign up and start a certification process. Your step one does not have to be this of course but if you want to find a new job for example, then you have to sit down and make a list of places to grab an application from and or think of where would be a good fit for you.

Some people don’t like to make a plan A because they start to think “if this fails, what will be my plan B?” It’s okay to have a plan B in some scenarios but DO NOT just fall on this little pillow of a plan B you have or you might as well settle for average the rest of your life. I am not saying that if you attempt plan A and do not succeed, you’re a failure. I am simply saying to bring everything and hold nothing back when chasing after what you want in life, whether it’s a small plan or big plan. Don’t watch the perfect pitch pass you by when you thought to swing on it.

So what will your plan be? Are you planning on getting back in shape? Are you planning on chasing after that job opportunity you always dreamed of? Whatever it may be, attach YOUR plan from every angle and don’t always settle for plan B.


Thank you for the support and all the congrats on the cert. I appreciate it all!

-Alex Costa