Here’s a unique shot of Frank Zane onstage looking like a statue of physical perfection. [Read more…]
Frank Zane’s chiseled physique is still considered near perfection today, etched muscle that seemed attainable.
He wasn’t from the gargoyle school of bodybuilding, so you rarely saw him hit a “crab” most muscular pose. This photo is about as close as he came to that. [Read more…]
Q: I’m using 4X, TORQ, and Super TORQ exclusively—no heavy training. I’ve already added about six pounds of new muscle in just a few months. Can I train each muscle more frequently than every four days? It seems like with moderate poundages, each muscle would recover quicker and I could train more often to grow even faster. Should I try it?
A: Try it. Whether it works well will depend on your recovery ability—and your age may also have a bearing…
Consider this: Research has discovered that the older we get, the more muscle inflammation derails muscle growth. [Merrit, E.K., et al. (2013). J App Physiology.] [Read more…]
Q: Your before and after photos at the X-Rep site are impressive and, to be frank, almost unbelievable. You say that the next year after those were taken, you gained another 10 pounds of muscle. What exactly do you attribute those new gains to? They’re almost unbelievable considering you were both advanced and supposedly drug-free?
A: “Supposedely” drug-free? Thank you! We always take an anabolic-steroid accusation as a compliment. We totally understand the doubt, considering how tough it is to build muscle, especially 10 pounds of it. We often think of the late Mike Mentzer, former pro bodybuilder and high-intensity advocate, who often suggested imagining 10 pounds of ground hamburger piled on a table. That’s a lot of meat… [Read more…]
Q: I’ve seen you mention “StatX” in some of your previous workouts. What is that? If it’ll get me bigger, I want to use it. Please explain.
A: StatX stands for Static Hold at the X Spot, usually at the end of a regular set. And, yes, you should use it often to get bigger. In fact, it may be the ultimate mass move, as you’ll see… [Read more…]
Q: I got The 4X Mass Workout e-book, and it’s fantastic! I tried it on arms for a few weeks, and they blew up at every workout. I measured, and I gained a quarter-inch in only three weeks. Thank you! They’d been stuck for over a year at just under 17″. I’m convinced and ready to use 4X on all bodyparts. I want to do your full-range Positions of Flexion method for each muscle, 4X on all exercises, but the POF routine in the 4X e-book is a 2-way split. I don’t think I can work legs and chest on the same day. Is there an alternative?
A: Don’t be a wuss! That’s the Phase 2 Size Surge program Jonathan used to pack on 20 pounds of muscle in 10 weeks, so suck it up and just do it…
Kidding! That 2-way split is too taxing for some trainees (not just wusses), which is one reason Jonathan provides a 3-way POF split in his Size Surge e-book (pages 55-57). Here’s how that less-taxing mass plan pans out… [Read more…]
Q: When is the best time for cardio? I’ve tried first thing in the morning before breakfast, but I felt tired and burned out by mid-morning, and my job suffered. Is right after a weight-training workout good? If so, for how many minutes? I’m trying to get lean while it’s still summer.
A: Steve interviewed two top researchers, Gabriel Wilson, M.S., and Jacob Wilson, Ph.D., and they believe cardio first thing in the morning on an empty stomach is HIGHLY catabolic. In other words, it wastes away your hard-earned muscle tissue. That makes sense considering you’ve been fasting for eight hours or more while you slept and your body is in the early stages of starvation. [Read more…]
We often look back through our ebooks for motivation and to find mass-boosting techniques we haven’t used in a while. We recently reminded ourselves about Stage Sets from our second e-book, Beyond X-Rep Muscle Building, which also discusses the X-Fade technique, Double-X Overload and X/Pause. When we first used Stage Sets and other X-hybrid techniques within the program outlined in that e-book, we each gained 10 pounds on top of our previous year’s great gains. Definitely something to add back into the mix once in a while when you have a training partner… [Read more…]
It’s the time of year when body-conscious folks are working to look their best for summer. A flat belly is great, and etched abs can really grab attention—but there’s nothing like phenomenal abdominals WITH overall muscularity and rugged rippedness.
The problem is, most people fail to even get to the first level—a flat, no-fat midsection. Why? It usually has something to do with the following 3 fat-burning facts you should be aware of. Knowing these will help you succeed in exiting the Chub Club and joining the Buff Brigade… [Read more…]
Q: I’ve been reading a lot about low-carb diets, and I was thinking about trying [that method]. I need to lose about 30 pounds to build up my confidence (and to start seeing some abs). Getting rid of carbs seems to be the best way. What do you think?
A: Low-carb diets certainly work, and gradually reducing your carb intake is the way to go, but you don’t want to take your daily carb total too low—and never go to zero. At our lowest carb count near the end of a ripping phase, we hover around 120 grams a day.
As we say in our X-treme Lean e-book: “In general, decreasing one of the macronutrients—fat, protein or carbohydrates—to abnormally low levels isn’t the way to go for fat loss. You may lose weight, but in the case of low carbs, some of it may be muscle.”
We like the carb-stacking approach to low-carb diets, which is putting most of your daily carb allotment at breakfast and after your workout when the muscles are depleted and will absorb most of the sugar as glycogen. There’s a sample carb-stacking diet on page 17 of X-treme Lean.
The rest of your meals should be protein dominant with very few carbs. That will force your body to burn fat for energy—and with protein circulating to feed your muscles, which you train heavy often, there is no need to burn muscle for energy—so you get bigger and leaner. Plus, protein has a higher energy cost—it takes more energy to absorb it than carbs. There’s more on all of that, as well as sample diets and workouts, in X-treme Lean so you can be ripped when you make the beach scene!
Note: You can get X-treme Lean along with The Ultimate Fat-to-Muscle Workout and X-traordinary Abs at a limited-time low price. It’s the Triple-Shredded Combo Offer to help you sail through summer summer with muscle and rippedness.
Till next time, train hard—and smart—for BIG results.
—Steve Holman and Jonathan Lawson
Veiny Arms All Day
You know that feeling you get right after a great workout? When you look and feel huge with that massive post-workout pump? Imagine feeling like that ALL day…
Frank Rich’s program can help you carry that just-worked-out look all day, and he’s offering it to our readers for almost nothing.
It’s one thing to develop big arms, but if when they look solid and have veins streaking all over, that’s when people really notice.
Frank has research showing that arm vascularity (the denseness and veininess) is more desirable to women than 6-pack abs, and if you’ve been following any fitness stuff on social media lately, you know that’s a fact.
We know from our own years of experience with being in various levels of conditioning that we get a LOT more looks when walking through the grocery store or running random errands when we have veins streaking down our arms.
Oh, and Frank’s new arm program (*plus all the bonuses*) is only $9 today, so take advantage while you can.