Back in the 1940s and ‘50s, Steve Reeves’ physique was so well muscled with classic lines that he was chosen to be Hercules in the movies. [Read more…]
Some of the most motivating photos to us are those featuring a top bodybuilder out in the general public—when they’re in decent shape, that is (LOL). In Zen 36 we featured Arnold walking through the streets of Venice, California.
This one is Tom Platz walking the path at Venice Beach, a classic photo from one of the best physique photographers of all time, Michael Neveux…. [Read more…]
Back in the 1990s, Steve’s very first book was titled Iron Man’s Home Gym Handbook. Looks like we’ve come full-circle. At the moment, there’s no place like home—or nowhere else to train but home…
Like most iron men and women, we’re at home with limited equipment. Luckily, our decades of bodybuilding experience have resulted in multiple mass-training tactics and moves to keep gains coming. Here’s Steve’s report on what he’s doing in his bare-bones pump-atorium. [Read more…]
1980 Mr. Universe Tom Platz had a pair of the freakiest legs bodybuilding had ever seen—and even today they look Photoshopped. Trust us—they aren’t (Steve interviewed Tom face-to-face back in the late ’80s for Iron Man magazine)… [Read more…]
It’s becoming clear that muscle elongation is very important for accelerating hypertrophy to a new level.
In other words, loaded stretching can provide another layer of freaky size quickly.
An older study that we often reference showing that was performed by Jose Antonio, Ph.D., et al.—and it produced incredible muscle size increases. Here’s what he said about it: [Read more…]
Q: The Double-X stretch method you describe in the last chapter of the Stretch Overload ebook really got me sore. All I did was add one set of the stretch exercise for each muscle [listed in chapter 1] with Double-X to my current workout. My question is, do you think just doing a heavy straight set of the stretch move would be better? For Double-X I have to use a lighter weight to get the hitch at the bottom of each rep.
A: Glad to hear that you were able to Double-X your muscle mass. For the uninitiated, Double-X Overload is simply a partial rep at the point of stretch between each full rep.
For example, on incline curls, you [Read more…]
Q: Right now I’m into your idea of using a basic workout to get big, so I’m using The Basic X-traordinary X-Rep Workout [pages 28-30 in that e-book]. I’ve been on it for three weeks, and I already feel bigger. I’m also stronger every time I train. Unreal results for workouts that take an hour. My question is, What can I do or add to that program for my slacker bodyparts? Like my shoulders desperately need extra roundness. Should I just add sets?
A: Simply adding sets to the existing delt workout is one way to go (but there’s another way that we like even better coming up). For example, the delt routine is dumbbell presses, and you pyramid the weight. Your reps should go 9, 7, 5-6, and on the last heaviest set you do X-Rep partials… [Read more…]
Q: I know the big midrange exercises, like squats and presses, are most important for mass, but after that, do you think the stretch-position exercise or the contracted-position exercise is the best followup for extra muscle growth? The reason I ask is that I don’t have a lot of time to train, so I’m going to do the Ultimate Exercise for each bodypart [identified in The Ultimate Mass Workout e-book] and one more, either stretch or contracted, whichever you say will give me the most growth.
A: Interesting dilemma, but both the stretch- and contracted-position exercises are important for different reasons. Each triggers growth along different pathways (but there is an easy solution to your problem, as you’ll see)… [Read more…]
A lot of experts say that you’re either destined to have big muscles (bodybuilder look) or you’re not (distance-runner physique). It has to do with the muscle fiber types you’re dealt at birth—the genetics cards. But some cutting-edge research indicates that genetic muscle limitations may not be set in stone. You may be able to go from skinny twig to muscular and big with the right training—and it can happen very quickly and with fairly short workouts (as you’ll see, studies have tripled muscle size in animals in a month; we’ll give you training tips tied to that phenomenon in a moment). [Read more…]