Building muscle is at once very simple and simultaneously incredibly complicated. If that sounds like something of a frustrating contradiction… well then get used to it! As you learn more about growing muscle and getting jacked you’ll find that almost all the information you come across only makes things more complicated and more difficult. Everyone has a different opinion and no-one seems able to agree on what the best way to get into powerful shape actually is.
When you start out though, it all seems very straightforward. In order to grow, you need to exercise more and eat more protein. When you do this, you start to build more muscle and you see yourself constantly increase in strength. If you aren’t seeing any growth or strength gains, then it might well simply mean that you aren’t going to the gym regularly enough, or working out hard enough when you are there!
And for the most part, this is fairly accurate. No matter what kind of training you are using, lifting weight and eating more meat should result in some muscle mass. Overcomplicating things at this stage will only make it harder to stay motivated and result in poor results.
But over time, you start to notice that you aren’t seeing change as quickly as you’d like. You realize that your colleagues-in-Iron are getting results faster than you and that you’ve ‘plateaued’, whatever that might mean.
That’s when you start to read into training and learn that there’s more than one way to skin a cat.
This is when you learn that the best way to build muscle is to lift heavy and for fewer reps. You need to focus on compound lifts so that your strength gains are ‘functional’ and you should support that with a healthy, ketogenic diet.
But then there’s another guy who’s saying something really rather different. This guy reckons that you should isolate your muscles during training and focus on just the one muscle group to cause the maximum muscle damage. And while you’re at it, you need to focus on higher rep ranges because really, the only thing that matters is ‘time under tension’.
Then someone comes over to you in the gym and corrects your technique – even though you learned it on YouTube – and you find yourself just about ready to give up on the whole thing. Training is just too complicated!
The Different Types of Muscle
What you’re experiencing here is the classic problem: ‘a little bit of knowledge is a very dangerous thing’. Unfortunately, everyone on the internet thinks they’re an expert and they’re very ready to tell you what the best way to build muscle is based on a very small amount of reading and very limited experience of their own.
But if you can spend enough time learning the whole picture, you’ll realize that there is no right way to build muscle and there is no wrong way. The reality is that there are different body types and there are different goals. The type of training you use should be based on the type of body you have and what you respond well to, as well as the type of training that most interests you and the goals that you’re looking to accomplish.
This isn’t just something people say, it’s 100% true.
Once you know what your body responds to, once you know what your goals are and once you understand how hypertrophy (muscle growth) works; then you can pick the very best muscle building strategy that will help you to see the most growth the most quickly. Once you find this ideal combination, your gains will completely accelerate and you’ll see much more impressive gains than you ever have done before.
And guess what? That’s just what we’re going to learn in this book. We’re going to learn the science behind muscle growth and strength gains and we’re going to discover the different ways to progress in each area. By the end, you’ll understand the differences between bodybuilding, powerlifting and power building. You’ll learn some very surprising ways to quickly gain a LOT of muscle and you’ll experience some highly efficient and punishing training methods that are quite unlike anything you’ve seen before.
To summarize, you’ll discover:
- The difference between fast and slow twitch muscle fibre
- The difference between ‘sarcoplasmic’ and ‘myofibrillar’ hypertrophy
- How to combine different types of training to experience ‘athletic aesthetics’
- Why both compound AND isolation movements are perfectly valid
- How to train faster for better results
- How to use the Joe Weider intensity principles
- How to see growth even as a ‘hardgainer’
- How to become incredibly lean and ripped, even as an endomorph
- How to work out your ‘training philosophy’
- How to choose a fitness movement that works for you
- How to develop a training program and stick to it
And much more!