Re: I'm 155lbs, I want to be 190lbs; read inside.
Originally Posted by Alex Nisetich
You have to think about what you really want -a planche or a ton of mass? You CAN eventually have both, I suppose, but you can't get both at once. If you want to gain weight, the formula is pretty simple: eat lots of food, and lift very heavy weights. Take epic amounts of rest, but keep eating even when you don't exercise.
I have always been a pretty strong guy, just genetically. But I realized a few years ago that I needed to get big and lift big if I wanted to keep up with everybody else in my sport (I play rugby). This is what I did:
Monday: Bench press, 8x4
Incline press w/DB, 3xr6
Hang clean, 5x5
DB row, 3x6
Tuesday: Back Squat, 8-6-6-4
Stiff leg deadlift (light), 2x10
Thursday: Repeat Mon.
Friday: repeat Tues.
I drank at least a quart of whole milk a day (usually more), and made sure to eat 4500-5000 calories of whatever I wanted. Peanut butter and honey sandwiches were my favorite snack, and I ate tons of beef and potatoes, dark green vegetables, eggs, and dairy as well. My results were excellent -I went from 162 lbs. to 197 lbs. in roughly 12 months (I also grew an inch taller, from 5'8" to 5'9", but that had nothing to do with my workout). The numbers, as far as strength (all weights in pounds):
Back Squat: from 225 to 315
Bench Press: from 185 to 275
Clean: from 110x5 to 177x5 (never did 1RM)
Deadlift: from 225 to 345 (and I never worked on it!)
It works. I trained balls out and was sore all the time, but I got huge. Of course, since starting CF those strength numbers have stayed the same or improved slightly, and my pullups and dips have shot through the ceiling, along with sprint times and overall conditioning. I am down to about 178 lbs. and still strong as I was. I don't see why you couldn't hold off on gymnastics, bulk up, and then come back to it. Just watch that you don't add mass that will hurt your gymnastics, like getting your legs really huge. That would make more sense to me than trying to gain mass on bodyweight exercises. Good luck.
Right now I'm looking at this 4 day split:
Day1 (oly / heavy upper)
Bench press 4x8-12
Weighted Dips 4x10-12
Dumbbell Maltese Fly 4x 12-15
Dragon Flags 4x 4-6
Day2 (oly / heavy lower)
Dead lift 3x8-12
Sumo DL High Pull 3x8-12
Plyo. SS / Calve Raises 4x8-12
Weighted Pull ups 4x8-12
60s Lever Hold
Iron Cross 4x3-4
Muscle Up 3x1-2?
Crescent PU 3x8-12
Ring Fly 3x8-12
Archer PU 3x8-12
Jackknife PU 3x8-12
Day4 (parallel bars)
60s HS Hold
60s Planch Hold
HSPU 4x 8-12
Planch PU 4x8-12
Pseudo Planch PU 4x8-12
I like keeping my reps around 10 for hypertrophy, I believe that my body might be more responsive to this rather than a rep range thats focused around 6 or so reps.
Originally Posted by Shane Bradbury
I used to think gaining weight would make me feel better. I've since felt that if I focus on strength not size, the size would probably come anyways. I mean bigger isn't always better, some amazing feats of strength have been documented by men who were 130-150lbs. Plus who wants to be the guy who can't lift well for his weight? If you can deadlift 400lbs at a bodyweight of 150lbs, that's much more impressive then someone who can deadlift 400lbs at a body weight of 200lbs.
I'm also not saying don't eat a lot, but if I was you, I'd change my mental approach. I would think 'I need to eat a lot of quality food to fuel my muscles for strength gains.' Instead of thinking that 'I need to eat a lot to get bigger.' There's the even more important issue of, will you be happy when the scale says 190? Or will you want 195? Maybe 200? I Love the Crossfit approach of performance is king, everything else is a correlate. I would say that includes bodyweight.
That's my .02 anyways.
I agree with you in this aspect. I'm looking at this as a long term project and ultimately I want to finish at a weight of about 180ish ripped. It's just that gaining the mass to build upon is the first step; I've been going about it all wrong. I used to wan't to be the small guy at 150 and be supper strong. Now I want to be the 180 pund guys who's super strong as well but not so heavy that I'm going too far into diminishing returns.
Originally Posted by Craig Brown
Pragmatically, I agree with everyone saying first make sure you really want to be bigger, not just stronger.
Then I'd do either of the SS's- Starting Strength or Super Squats, eat, and sleep. The issue here is you are actually trying to change how your metabolism works. 500 calories a day isn't going to do that. I literally doubled my caloric intake to gain 30+ pounds in two years. Then I had to do a lot of work to get to a maintenance level, and a level where I could just cruise at 185.
Simple, HEAVY exercise is the key to this. To me the perfect exercises ended up being 20 rep squats, alternated with 5x5, 5x5 on deads, cleans & push presses 3x3, shrugs 3x5 and chins and dips 3x8, add five pounds anytime I hit 8 in the fist two sets. Ran a few miles a few times a week. It also takes a sick addiction to slow weight progression.
I'm taking in close to 4000 calories per day, probably close to 5000 on days I work out. It's not all 100% clean but its mostly fruits, veggies, good carbs and protein and also good fats. Probably 85% good, 15% bad. I'm just being honest, sometimes I just feel like a damn cookie.
Originally Posted by Arden Cogar Jr.
Wow, a lot of insight has gone into what everyone has written. Personally, I could write all day on this subject.
To gain 35lbs at your current size is quite possible. But as many have said, you'll need to eliminate the met con and cardio. Moreover, it's not about going heavy all the time and eating like a pig. It's about waving your training loads with an eye toward stimulus and hyptertrophy and manipulating your carbohydrates very carefully (I assume you want to remain as lean as you can?).
Personally, given your back ground, I think 35 pounds over a three or four year time frame with steady hard training with cycles of mass (no met con) and regular xfit would be perfect. But you have to be patient. You need to treat this long term. You will need to commit to life certainties with your diet (eating clean and not crap). You will also need to map out your training very systematically to alternate heavy and light and change it up very frequently to avoid adaptation.
Unless you're a genetic freak who was once already 190lbs and you're completely detrained, gaining this weight in less than the time period I've described will be very very difficult. Not impossible. But very difficult. Some people have the genetics for it. I, for one, do not. I was born broad and I've stayed broad (and could stand to lose a good 10 to 20 pounds of good ole middle age torso expansion).
Good luck and let us know what you decide and how you're progressing.
All the best,
Thanks for the tips, I agree and I do look at this as a very long term project. In fact I look at my body as a never ending project; I'm just taking it in a different direction so re-structuring is needed. Granted I'll be doing several years of mass / lean cycles to get to the weight I want before I start doing an almost CF / Gymnastics exclusive workout from then on. Unless I change my mind by then, which I most likely will.
Originally Posted by Yong Tang
just personal thoughts, but I don't believe rushing to gain any sort of mass in the amounts you are hoping for is good for you. I believe in balance, and apply it to many things I do in life. You are young, have so many years ahead of you, and you want to be that big right now. Besides, you can't expect to gain those 35 lbs of mass in a short time without gaining a lot of fat. 35 lbs of pure muscle is just too much to ask for. Unless you are talking in the long range like Arden said, you probably shouldn't shoot for it.
I'm like you and I have fast metabolism which makes it insanely hard to gain weight in a short amount of time, which is why I have turned my attention to long term goals. I just think that what you are asking for is short sighted, that's all.
Short term has nothing to do with this; I understand the idea that my body can't produce this type of muscle super fast. One thing I do know is that I can drop fat as fast as I gain it almost. Only thing I need to do to cut down is go on a paleo diet for a month or two and bam I'm back to six pack central. (don't burst my bubble