food and nutrition


Question: muscles??? if you have big muscles, how long did it take to get them and what did you do to get them big?? whats the quickest way to get big muscles?

Answer: Well, I could tell you my own personal story, but everyone's story is different because everyone's body is different. I started out very skinny (5' 11", about 150 lbs, and about 12% bodyfat -- I was a teenager) and that was about 20 years ago. Now, I'm still 5' 11" (give or take), about 185 lbs and about 6% bodyfat. So, I put on a lot of muscle AND got leaner. How did I do this? Well, first of all, let me address your second question -- there is really no QUICK way to get big muscles. Not unless you have great genetics (I assume that if you did, you wouldn't be asking -- no sarcasm intended). Gaining muscle takes a long time and a lot of patience. It took me 20 years to get where I am now. I put on about 20 lbs the first year, and it went very slowly from there. Now, I just train to maintain what I have. I am near 40 now, and it gets harder to gain as you get older. How did I get here? Finding an appropriate training program and diet was critical. I made a TON of mistakes when I was younger. The biggest mistake I made was trying to train the same way that the big guys trained (that is, I tried to make believe that I gained muscle easily and trained like someone who gets muscular very easily). So, I kept overtraining for a very long time. And it didn't work. And I was very frustrated. It took years for me to figure out that -- and this is very important -- I am an average guy with average genetics. I also have a fast metabolism. All these things make it hard for me to put on a lot of muscle. Does this mean I can't do it? No, but I have to be smarter about it than someone who gains muscle easily. So do you? What can YOU do? Do what I did. Do a lot of research on how to train as a hardgainer (which you might be). Most hardgaining programs recommend the following -- and this is what worked and continues to work for me: 1. Do only big basic compound movements. The same ones that most powerlifters do. Do these exercises only. Do them until you've gotten as big as you want to. THEN, you can try isolation movements like bicep curls and leg extensions. Here are the exercises you should be doing (have someone qualified show you how to do them properly): Squats, deadlifts, bench presses, dips, rows, military presses, and some ab exercise. That's it. 2. Train hard but infrequently. This is very important. If you find it hard to gain muscle, training too often will really make it hard for you to gain because you don't have great recuperative abilities. Train 2 - 3x a week at most. The caveat -- train hard but make it short. 2 - 3 sets at most for each exercise. Heck, if you do ONE set of squats correctly (that means hard but safe), ONE set is all you need. That's all I do. 3. EAT A TON OF FOOD. If you are training hard (like above) but aren't gaining weight, it's because you aren't eating enough. PERIOD. I'm not saying junk food. Good food, ALL THE TIME. 4. PATIENCE, PATIENCE, PATIENCE. If you find it hard to gain muscle, then you will need to be patient. If you are getting stronger and gaining just a little bit, GREAT! A little is better than nothing. Remember -- some of us just don't get muscular quickly. That's okay -- just keep things in perspective and don't give up. If you can gain just one pound every month, celebrate -- if you can do that every month, that's 12 lbs in a year (and it will probably be all muscle). Well, I guess I wrote a lot here. I just feel for you because I know how hard it can be for some people. Don't give up. Just don't make the mistake of following what you see in muscle mags (the routines that worked for the bodybuilding stars who have incredible genetics and are also on steroids). Train like an average person should, eat a lot, be patient, and stay focused. The muscle will come. P.S. Read BRAWN by Stuart McRobert.

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