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Old 02-21-2007, 08:00 AM   #11
William Hunter
Member William Hunter is offline
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Rome  GA
Posts: 967
Wow, awesome post Eric.

Well, I was pretty skinny when I started, but not as skinny as you Shane (was 5'11, 160 lbs, now 188).

"have had any success attaining and maintaining functional strength and mass with a high level of "crossfitness"." This is your quote from your first post and I think the problem is right there. You, me and countless others have found that you can't always maintain crossfitness while actively trying to gain LBM. I was frustrated by several attempts until I basically cut out the metcon for about 8-9 months.

I put on a lot of muscle. I gained some fat (lost my pretty abs :-( ). I tried just about all the things Eric just spoke of (10x3, 5x5, 3x10, EDT) and reintroduced whole grains, brown rice etc for weight gain. I definitely lost my crossfitness...but I know where it is and how to get it back. I'll probably start ramping up the metcon here in the next month or two, but might return to weight gain in the fall. I think my ultimate goal will be to get to 200 lbs but I'm not in a huge rush. With body types like ours we can take the fat off fairly quickly and once I let that realization really sink in I applied Eric's suggestions with gusto.

Good luck, and keep trying. The answers are out there.
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Old 02-21-2007, 08:05 AM   #12
Franklin Shogie
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Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Tijuana  Baja California
Posts: 339
Shane, I think I qualify as a hardgainer. I was 5'10" and 125lb soaking wet. My daddy commented to me that I was the only guy he knew that had to stand twice to cast a shadow...

the advice that the gentlemen above have given worked for me. There is NO instantaneous magic. It took me several years to work up to a body weight of 180lb. Basically I ate anything that wasn't nailed down and stayed in a high fat high protein regimen.

It was common for me to eat an entire chicken, a couple of potatos, veggies and more for dinner. This was before creatine, BCAAs and the other bodybuilding gobblegook came into the fore.

To expand on Eric's first comment, if you don't have the testosterone or if it is masked by unusually high levels of estrogen, and BTW that condition can be caused by diet, you're not going to grow...

The part that they all have reiterated is to lift heavy on the basic lifts. GO HEAVY OR GO HOME.

When you can back squat 330lb (A2A) for 5 reps you'll have gained some serious muscle. 330 is twice his bodyweight now.
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Old 02-21-2007, 08:29 AM   #13
Eric Cimrhanzel
Member Eric Cimrhanzel is offline
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Houston and College Station  TX
Posts: 297
A point I barely touched on and mostly forgot to make in my last post, regarding Game #2, but is still very important. You may already know what I'm about to say here, and I was going to assume that you know this, but assuming leads to misinterpretation, and that's not going to help you.

Do NOT just train the heavy lifts during your heavy lifting program!

You want a 330lb Squat like Franklin mentioned? Awesome. Keep practicing Pistols (1-legged Squats), too. Then weighted Pistols while you're at it (save these for the low-rep workouts, though).

Here's some other good combos/replacements.

Learn and practice:

-Full-Range Handstand Pushups AND the Clean&Press
-Deadlifts AND heavy Swings
-Muscle-ups AND Weighted Full-range Dips
-Bench Press AND One-armed Pushups (I don't care what some CrossFitters say, OAPUs should be a part of an overall fitness program, and is a skill to be developed over time)
-Renegade Rows AND heavy Weighted Chin-ups
-Squat Cleans AND Box Jumps
-Overhead Squats AND no-support Handstands

There are quite a few more, and those combos are not perfect or set in stone by any means, but the important thing is to balance out Gymnastics skills with heavy barbell, dumbbell, kettlebell, and/or sandbag training, as well.
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Old 02-21-2007, 10:25 AM   #14
Timothy Kordas
Member Timothy Kordas is offline
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: San Mateo  CA
Posts: 4
I'm a hardgainer, and agree with much of what's been said above.

One thing that helped me (in addition to "eat more") was "workout less."

In order to put on weight, I got *much* better results by limiting my workouts to short strength-focused sessions (deadlifts, squats, swings, weighted-pullups, dips, power cleans, and C+J all intermixed).

Never work to failure -- *always* have 4-10 more reps "in the tank."

Log every lift in a notebook. If your progress slips by much, you probably aren't recovering enough.

I avoided most of the PWO supplement stuff (too much sugar), and tried to eat frequent, large "normal food" meals.

It is easy for me to get caught up in metcon workouts. But to gain weight I had to reduce volume, increase load and really focus on lifting with good form.

High-quality sleep is also important. There is no muscle gain without time spent recovering.
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Old 02-21-2007, 01:52 PM   #15
Shane Christopher Imbert
Member Shane Christopher Imbert is offline
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Sydney, Hills District  NSW
Posts: 27
Hi Eric,

I have read Mike Mahler's article on T levels and I recall him stating that a good indication of low T levels is a low sex drive and not waking up with a "morning woody". (I hope it is ok to mention this here, I apologise in advance if it is not so). Thank God I`m not in that situation as I have been having healthy regular sex. Nevertheless it cant hurt to get a blood test done. My instincts tell me I am just one of those guys that has a very fast metabolism.

Great point about Fran, Elizabeth and Diane. I now remember getting great results from these workouts a few months ago. I guess crossfit is just so random that I probably need to add these workouts in my program for a more structured routine. Thanks for reminding me.

I will take on board all your advice, vary 10x3, 5x5,3x10, cut metcons for a while and rest more!!
I will just have to lose my abs for a while as vain as that sounds.

Thanks guys for all your responses.

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Old 02-21-2007, 03:54 PM   #16
Andrew Cattermole
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Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Sydney  NSW
Posts: 418
Hey Shane,
If you are coming on Saturday, I will give you that program we talked about.
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Old 02-22-2007, 09:57 AM   #17
Nick Cummings
Departed Nick Cummings is offline
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 1,023
Shane, go buy the book Starting Strength and implement it exactly as written. Write down how many calories you eat each day and make sure you eat close to 1g protein/lb LBM and 20kcal/lb LBM. Report back in three months if you have not gained weight. This is a simple process, it just requires hard work. I have so far gained 40lbs and am not over 15%, more likely 12% bodyfat. I have experience with this kind of thing.
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