Q: I’m a powerlifter, but I want a better physique. I’m not sure how. I’ve got some muscle, but I sure don’t look like a bodybuilder. What should I do? I’m thinking I just need more isolated exercises for each muscle, like pushdowns for triceps. If I keep pushing heavy weights on all those exercises, I’ll look more like a bodybuilder, right? Do any of your e-books address my problem?
A: You gave a clue to one of the big reasons so many trainees make slow-to-no muscle gains: They’re brainwashed into believing that heavy training exclusively is what builds mass. That’s simply not true… [Read more…]
Danny Padilla was known for his classic, no-flaws physique. His nickname was “the Giant Killer” because at only 5’2” his perfect mass-symmetry combo allowed him to beat bodybuilders who were much taller and larger than he was. [Read more…]
Q: You guys have contributed so much to my ability to build lots of muscle. I want to thank you. X Reps are fantastic. Positions of Flexion is great; I build most of my workouts around that full-range principle. You’ve also created 4X and negative-accentuated [X-centric] training. So what do you think is the best of the bunch, your #1 mass-building discovery over the years?
A: Out of all of our mass-building tactics, X Reps are probably the easiest to apply. Well, maybe “easiest” is the wrong word because when you use them correctly, X-Rep partials at the end of a set are brutal—they hurt, but they work. X Reps make any set three to five times more effective at packing on mass… [Read more…]
Q: Maybe I missed it since I’m a relatively new subscriber to your newsletter, but what is the Ultimate Exercise for shoulder size; wide-grip dumbbell upright rows or dumbbell presses?
A: We first identified each Ultimate Exercise for every major bodypart in our first e-book, The Ultimate Mass Workout. There’s a comprehensive chapter on each one, why they are best, and also a few complete programs with just those moves—like V-handle chins for lats… [Read more…]
Q: In one of your recent newsletters I noticed that you guys recommended using The Basic X-traordinary X-Rep Workout to an advanced trainee. Can someone who’s been training a while really make new gains with such an abbreviated basic program?
A: Absolutely! And the gains can be outstanding, especially after an extreme peaking cycle. When you’ve been training toward a peak day, like a competition, photoshoot, or any other specific goal, you bring yourself to the brink of overtraining—but that’s a good thing, and incredible things happen when you simplify for size… [Read more…]
This classic shot of Vince Gironda, the legendary Iron Guru, was taken way back in the 1950s. His aesthetic physique, with its symmetry, lines, and rippedness, holds up today. Yep, even now most guys would kill to walk down the beach looking like Vince… [Read more…]
Q: After reading one of your articles that discussed the study where light, longer sets built muscle, I was thinking that maybe that’s why X Reps build so much size. Because they’re partial reps where the muscle is stretched, you block blood flow and get more tension time by making the set last longer. Do you think that’s the case—that X Reps work because they make a set last longer?
A: No doubt that ex-tending the set with X-Reps is one reason those power partials are so effective at building more muscle. As you said, you not only pulse at the
Q: I’ve been using the Power Pyramid Program (Chapter 2 in the Freak-Physique Stretch-Overload Workout e-book) for six weeks. I’m getting incredibly strong, but I’ve only gained about four pounds of muscle. I realize it’s a muscle strength workout with a size side effect, but now I’m ready to use my new strength to go for major muscle mass. I also want to get leaner. I’m 5’10” and weigh 200 pounds with 14 percent
A: Ah, so now that you’re strong like an ox, you want to get even bigger with some leanness to boot. Sounds good, and it can and will happen. You just need to take your new power in a slightly different direction—still using the multi-angular attack of POF, but altered so you pack on the most muscle size—complete development from origin to insertion.[Read more…]
Q: I’ve noticed in a lot of your e-book routines that you often recommend just two work sets for an exercise Why? Should I do more? I’ve read that most bodybuilders do four or five sets per exercise.
A: As Arthur Jones, the creator of Nautilus machines said: “You can train hard or you can train long, but you can’t do both.” Short and hard or long and not so hard both work. Despite what some die-hard high-intensity trainers say, gradually increasing volume is a form of overload that can result in more muscle—if you don’t overdo intensity. It’s a balancing act. Us? Regardless of whether it’s one of our low-set workouts or high tension time workouts, we’re about