Changing to a workout for size

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HealthyJay
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Changing to a workout for size

Post by HealthyJay » Mon Apr 08, 2013 11:11 am

Ok so i've been lifting for strength for about a month and a half now, and am seeing some good strength gains (success!). My next question is about lifting for size.

I am training for the next rugby season so i want to mix in a month ish with exercising to gain mussle mass and size, over just strength.

I have found a few conflicting things in my search online. One place i read said to lift 3-5 sets of higher reps (12 ish) and another site said to lift 5-8 sets to failure.

What are some basic rules for lifting for SIZE instead of pure strength? I read theough a number of older posts and didn't find exactly what i was looking for,

Thanks all!

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JasonJones
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Re: Changing to a workout for size

Post by JasonJones » Mon Apr 08, 2013 11:20 am

There are lots of theories on what rep range is best for putting on size, and certainly a fair number of basic rules, but I think the two biggest components, especially for someone fairly new to lifting, are:

1. Eat More.
2. Follow somebody else's footsteps.

If you eat more and lift for strength, you'll definitely grow. People have been using StrongLifts and Starting Strength for years to put on size. But if you're interested in something a little more athletic, give Westside For Skinny Bastards III a try.
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robertscott
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Re: Changing to a workout for size

Post by robertscott » Mon Apr 08, 2013 11:40 am

the classic approach is:

-3 to 5 exercises per muscle group
-3 to 5 sets per exercise
-sets of 8 to 12 reps
-ramp up your weights (so get heavier with each set)
-take the last set of each exercise to failure
-train each muscle group at least once a week. More if you can handle it.

and you need to eat like a man possessed.

HealthyJay
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Re: Changing to a workout for size

Post by HealthyJay » Mon Apr 08, 2013 12:15 pm

robertscott wrote: and you need to eat like a man possessed.
That is one of the most confusing parts... A friend of mine who competes as a strong man mentioned this to me also, but he has what LOOKS like a beer belly. I'm sure it isn't bec i don't think he drinks and he has been lifting and competing for quite some time.

Is there a certain percetage each day i should be getting my fats, carbs, and protien out of my total calories? How many calories should i be shooting for in a day? I currently weigh about 178, i'm 6'1", and do a 2 day split push/pull. So i'm in the gym lifting 4 times a week and doing some sort of cardio 4-5 times a week.

HealthyJay
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Re: Changing to a workout for size

Post by HealthyJay » Mon Apr 08, 2013 12:37 pm

And i have also heard isolation exercises are better for building size. Is that true? Or could i build just as much muscle mass doing squats ad i could doing leg extensions on a machine?

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Stephen Johnson
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Re: Changing to a workout for size

Post by Stephen Johnson » Mon Apr 08, 2013 12:39 pm

HealthyJay wrote:So i'm in the gym lifting 4 times a week and doing some sort of cardio 4-5 times a week.
You might want to cut the cardio to 2-3 times a week, preferably doing interval training sessions lasting no more than 20 minutes each. Too much cardio will eat into your potential muscle gains.

Also, being able to gain a lot of size depends on having a lot of fast twitch muscle fibers. If you have mostly slow twitch muscle fibers, training right will boost your physique, but you can forget about being really huge
Thanks TimD

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Re: Changing to a workout for size

Post by robertscott » Mon Apr 08, 2013 12:59 pm

HealthyJay wrote:
robertscott wrote: and you need to eat like a man possessed.
That is one of the most confusing parts... A friend of mine who competes as a strong man mentioned this to me also, but he has what LOOKS like a beer belly. I'm sure it isn't bec i don't think he drinks and he has been lifting and competing for quite some time.

Is there a certain percetage each day i should be getting my fats, carbs, and protien out of my total calories? How many calories should i be shooting for in a day? I currently weigh about 178, i'm 6'1", and do a 2 day split push/pull. So i'm in the gym lifting 4 times a week and doing some sort of cardio 4-5 times a week.
strongmen don't care about their physique, they only care about their strength so they try to stay in a massive calorie surplus.

You won't be eating as much as they are, and if you do find yourself getting fat then eat less.

Don't let fear of getting fat make you undereat. You'll never get big that way.
HealthyJay wrote:And i have also heard isolation exercises are better for building size. Is that true? Or could i build just as much muscle mass doing squats ad i could doing leg extensions on a machine?
No. Isolation exercises are the icing on the cake. To use legs as an example, squats would be the focus of your workout, and most of your size will be built with them. Once you've done your squats, you'd add some isolation exercises to bring up certain areas, eg leg curls to bring up your hamstrings, extensions to emphasise portions of your quads etc.

You'll find that the compound lifts will favour different muscles depending on your physiology. For example, I am quite a delt dominant presser, so my chest doesn't get fully stimulated benching. I can do an iso exercise for chest after like pec deck or whatever to make sure all my muscles are getting worked properly.

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