“Eat 10,000 calories a day, train hard with lots of rest, don’t do any cardio and sleep 12 hours a night and you will build muscle”
Which to me is very similar to telling people the secret to getting rich is:
“Work 5 full times jobs, live in a shack for 8 years, only spend 3 dollars a day on food and have no possessions and you’ll get rich”
OK..maybe not the best analogy, but you get the idea.
The fact is by adding a ton of body fat you can’t really tell how or where you are gaining your muscle.
And if you are a skinny guy (or girl) to begin with, it’ll actually FEEL like you are adding muscle.
But this is an aimless way approach to building muscle. There’s no true road map, no goals other than ‘weight’.
I’m not a fan of this approach (Obviously)
I’ve bulked up from 190 to 216 when I was in my twenties, just to cut back down to the low 180′s.
I didn’t gain, nor lose any muscle during this entire process (measured by BodPod & Skin Calipers)
To me, bulking is nothing more than a great way for a personal trainer to make you think you are making progress, when really..you’re just getting fat.
So here’s my alternative.
Let’s use a hypothetical situation.
You are a 31 year old male with 8 years training experience who wants to build some more muscle.
You are 6’2″ and weigh in at 205-208 pounds, not lean, not skinny. People can tell you workout, but your right in the middle of being ‘big’ and being ‘lean’, you’re probably around 16-17% body fat
Meaning you have about 170 pounds of Lean Body Mass of which 85 to 90 pounds would be Skeletal Muscle
Old way of thinking would be to eat 5,000 to 10,000 calories every day for the next couple months, then spend 3 months dieting preparing to display your new muscle in the summer.
New way of thinking is a bit more….Tactical.
From the principles from the Adonis Effect I can say that at a natural 6’2″ with an average build (nothing freaky):
You should be able to hold about 180 pounds of Lean Body Mass (of which, 90 to 100 pounds would be actual muscle).
Which at about 10% body fat would put you roughly at 200 pounds.
(So you would need to increase your skeletal muscle mass by about 10% and decrease body fat by about 40%.)
At this Height, weight and body comp you should have a waist that is roughly 33 inches, and a shoulder circumference that should be above 50 inches and closing in on 53.5 inches.
Lastly assuming a ‘drop’ of 7 inches from your shoulders you should be looking at about a 46 inch chest.
So I’d use that as your ‘body road map’ – something to aim for while doing everything possible in the gym to gain strength.
Remember Muscle mass follows strength. For anyone other than beginner athletes, you can’t get stronger at a lift without the muscle involved in that lift getting at least a little larger.
So take your measurements now, then test some basic lifts in the gym..shoulder press, squat, bench, dead, weighted chin, maybe weighted dips… Then Track and test and test and track.
When it comes to overeating, it would completely be up to you. You can get as fat as you like…but it won’t change the facts that this is most likely what will be ‘underneath’ everything.
At this age and training experience I”m just not sure that eating a massive surplus is going to help (unless you plan on taking steroids, then overeating and high protein may do the trick).
But the very easiest solution is to take your waist measurement now, maybe 2 inches below belly button, at belly button and 2 inches above…and then track.
If these measurements start going up you know you are eating more than you need to and you can dial back a bit (it doesn’t make sense that you would need to store fat in order to build muscle –> they are two completely different physical processes)
Now this road map is by no means perfect…you could be a genetic freak who can hold 210 pounds of lean mass at 6’2″, or you may have naturally narrow shoulders and will never be able to hit 53.5 inches…but it’s a start, and it’s better than having no direction at all.
That’s what the Adonis Effect is all about…tactical muscle building.
Same goes for the Venus Effect for women.
PS- Click the pic of Below for a special “Holiday discount” on the Adonis Effect..