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View Full Version : Help getting hyooge. (Milk ain't doin' it.)


Patrick Donnelly
05-22-2010, 04:03 PM
Ok, so here's the skinny: I want to be less skinny. Not that I'm particularly skinny right now, at 6'1 and a mildly soft 220lbs, but my long-term goal weight has always been in the range of a fairly lean 230lbs, and I think I can make it there this summer. I figure that'll require me hitting about 240lbs though, then laying off the ice cream and doing some cardio while I "tone up," or whatever you want to call it.

Diet is something like the following per day:
- 1.5lbs of chicken or beef (that's pre-cooked weight)
- 10 eggs w/ a third a stick of butter
- gallon of whole chocolate milk
- half cup of frozen berries or mixed fruit
- whole cup of stirfry or steamed veggies
- maybe some nuts, but not much
- maybe some ice cream (generally a 2qt, 2000cal tub each week)

I don't know the exact calorie or macronutrient breakdown, but I figure it's pretty high up there simply from the milk. I've tried going simply high-calorie before too, by drinking 8-12oz of olive oil per day (2000-3000cal) but that didn't even get me past 190lbs since I didn't have enough protein to go with it. This should be enough to gain past 220lbs, no? Am I just lacking calories then? I'm not doing any intermittent fasting right now either (ceased to be convenient for me), and I'm never feeling either stuffed nor hungry.

Sleep is solid. 8hrs a night, pitch black room. Sometimes I wake up to use the bathroom (gallon of milk, remember?), but I'm always back to sleep immediately after that without a snag.

Workouts are going well, doing pretty high-volume stuff, mostly bodyweight strength based, all with an intuitive training format. I know the stuff I have to hit frequently (ring dips, handstand presses, dragon flags, etc.) and I do hit it frequently (five 1.5-2hr workouts), but the exact choices for any given day and the reps/sets are selected simply to make sure I end up leaving each workout feeling better than I started it, which lets me train again sooner. There's very little barbell work (maybe two 1hr workouts per week) and I'm mostly hitting stuff that I know will have a direct carry over to the other acrobatics-type stuff I'm doing, like windmills and pullovers. There are some power cleans, some deadlifts, no squats. (I have no squat, and I'm proud of it.) I don't want to gain any additional lower body mass anyway, as that's not going to help me get an iron cross in the next ~2yrs (whereas swole lats will). Then there's some tightrope walking (1-4hrs), which is pretty draining as far as fine motor skills go, but not much of a workout.

This got me from 210lbs to 220lbs over the course of the second half of April, but I've been stuck at 220lbs since then. What gives? Should I be feeling stuffed if I eat all of that? Should I be eating more if I don't? I've even had two gallons of milk each day for the past two days because I was doing yardwork and needed the energy, but I put two gallons away as easily as one. For the magic elixir people make whole milk out to be, I've been very disappointed with it. Would the olive oil shots be worth a shot again? The weight I've gained so far seems to be evenly distributed between my upper body (good) and waistline (not the best, but acceptable), but I still have a ways to go and I'd like to hit 240 by early August so I can at least start leaning out before September, though that timeline might be unreasonable by this point.

Thanks in advance for any advice.

Donald Lee
05-22-2010, 04:26 PM
I'm not sure what's going on with your diet, since whole chocolate milk seems to be approximately 3,328 calories/gallon. You could try adding more high calorie starches.

I think your biggest problem though is your training. The majority of your strength training consists of HS holds and variations of dips (none of which are seem to be weighted). It's hard to grow with isometric training. Also, when your prime movers (the large muscles) aren't getting stronger, there's not much incentive for your body to grow.

Basically, it seems like you're focusing more on skill work than strength work.

Dave Van Skike
05-22-2010, 05:48 PM
squat more. press more. pull more. i'm afraid it's that simple.

Chris Butler
05-22-2010, 06:11 PM
squat more. press more. pull more. i'm afraid it's that simple. +1!Lift heavy $#!+, often!
Fast twitch fibers have the greatest propensity for growth. Your not working towards stimulating them.

Bodyweight training has a cap on motor unit recruitment.

Why do you want to focus on fat gain?

Do a clean bulk and be patient. If you are going to try and put on 20+ lbs. in a summer, the vast majority of that is going to be fat. Which you will have to lose and more than likely lose hard earned muscle in the process.

Muscle development is a journey. Enjoy the journey.

Derek Weaver
05-22-2010, 07:09 PM
nobody else mentioned it, but your goal of bodyweight increase doesn't really fit with a lot of your training goals. I'm sure there is someone out there at 220+ lbs who can do an iron cross, but not many

Patrick Donnelly
05-22-2010, 07:16 PM
I'm not sure what's going on with your diet, since whole chocolate milk seems to be approximately 3,328 calories/gallon. You could try adding more high calorie starches.

I think your biggest problem though is your training. The majority of your strength training consists of HS holds and variations of dips (none of which are seem to be weighted). It's hard to grow with isometric training. Also, when your prime movers (the large muscles) aren't getting stronger, there's not much incentive for your body to grow.

Basically, it seems like you're focusing more on skill work than strength work.
Trust me, doing dips with the rings turned out is definitely a strength movement... If you ever get strong enough to do perfect reps, it's pretty much the equivalent of flat-back benching a pair of half bodyweight dumbbells to a point well below the sternum, with the palms facing you. It's stupidly difficult, but I've been making steady progress with them. I'd like to be doing more front lever work too, but the exercises that I find I get the most out of, can't be done with rings hanging from a 6.5' tall power rack (currently working on amending this).

My main confusion is that even if I'm lacking bona fide strength work, this doesn't explain where the calories are going.

squat more. press more. pull more. i'm afraid it's that simple.
It is, yeah, but only when your goals are to do those things heavier. Right now, I'm training with a gymnastics club at UMCP, and I've been doing it for two years, and only have 2-3 more, depending on how long I take to graduate. I feel like I sort of half-assed the first two years, since I was spending too much time with barbell stuff (and not enough time with either to make great progress in either). Barbells will still be around and waiting for me in a few years - this club won't. So, I'm putting all my spice in one stew so I can get at least one good meal. Over the next year, I'd like to (generally speaking): solidify my human flag, get a solid handstand press from L-seat, get a front lever on rings, become proficient at tight rope walking, and get some stupidly cool partner balancing skills, like the thing at 3:00 in this video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IGh9QkWORLE) or doing a Turkish get-up while holding Steven Low upside down by his head (maybe in another two years :p ). Squats don't help with that (with the possible exception of one-arm overhead barbell squats, which I like).

Bodyweight training has a cap on motor unit recruitment.

Why do you want to focus on fat gain?

Do a clean bulk and be patient. If you are going to try and put on 20+ lbs. in a summer, the vast majority of that is going to be fat. Which you will have to lose and more than likely lose hard earned muscle in the process.

Muscle development is a journey. Enjoy the journey.
Chris, what do you mean that BWE has a cap on motor recruitment?

I weighed 140lbs just four years ago or so, and I got to this point in a series of concrete steps. The whole slow and steady thing hasn't ever worked for me. Maybe I'm just not doing it right, but if that's the case, I have no reason to believe that I'd end up doing it right this time either.

I'd also be content just to hit a lean 220lbs this summer, but 230 would be awesome. Even 220 would require a bit more gain before I start to lean out. I'd just like to get whatever weight changes I'm doing over with by September. When September comes, I suddenly lose a lot of control over what I can do in my workouts. With classes starting, I'll no longer have the luxury of being able to work out whenever the hell I want to, because of time commitments, and when club practices start up again, there'll also be some limits in what I can do each day during my workouts (though the practices are generally scheduled loosely). Basically, if there's one time in the year where I have the ability to eat like a lion, hibernate like a bear, and work myself like a mule, it's the summer.

Donald Lee
05-22-2010, 07:22 PM
Could you add up your reps and give an approximation of your total volume per week for pressing and pulling movements?

Don't include any isometric stuff.

Patrick Donnelly
05-22-2010, 07:28 PM
nobody else mentioned it, but your goal of bodyweight increase doesn't really fit with a lot of your training goals. I'm sure there is someone out there at 220+ lbs who can do an iron cross, but not many
Yeah, the cross might be a bit of a stretch, but the front lever definitely isn't. It'll just be hard, but that'll only make it all the more beast when I get it.

While I might be able to get some of the skills easier if I let myself slim back down to the 140lb twig I used to be, that'll certainly make the partner balancing a lot more difficult for me, which is where I see the most potential for myself. (See the video linked in the last post, for a decent example of a partner balancing routine - a great routine if you consider the fact the dude is blindfolded. I found that randomly on YouTube.) Also, if I get that handstand press good enough to be in this act (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a_BdK3jPk6w) (a video from the club's 2009 season finale show), then there's the possibility of taking the pose you see at 3:05 where two guys are doing handstands where one is floating over nothing, and then tacking a third person onto it. However, to get three people in the chain, you've got to have a very heavy first guy, a middleweight in the middle, and a very light person on the end. I'd take care of the heavyweight position, obviously. Maybe that'd even have to wait 2yrs, just for me to get a handstand perfect enough to make that a safe pose to attempt, but it'd still be totally worth it.

Patrick Donnelly
05-22-2010, 07:41 PM
Could you add up your reps and give an approximation of your total volume per week for pressing and pulling movements?

Don't include any isometric stuff.

Unfortunately, I don't think so. Not to be snarky, but the lines get very blurred when it comes to BWE, especially when you're doing stuff like holding your arms extended overhead while someone does a muscle-up on your hands. (That's actually a fairly easy thing to do, but you can see how it'd be hard to classify as anything, though it definitely is something.)

Also, I tested my axle power clean and bench press tonight. No substantial difference from the last times I did them (maybe a month ago), but I chalk this up to having done 14.5hrs of bamboo removal in my backyard over the past four days. On another day, PR's would have been there, I think. (I can't be sure, of course, but I reserve my right to talk out of my ass, as this is the internet we're on.)

As for progress I've noticed so far, my dragon flag eccentrics have very quickly gone from doing maybe the first 45-60 degrees to doing a full eccentric slowly and handstand pressing from a standing pike (just bending over and putting the palms on the floor), is substantially easier than it was a few weeks ago, even though I'm heavier. Ring dips are also getting more strict and deeper, as I mentioned before.

Tyler Micheli
05-22-2010, 08:07 PM
Add in at least another pound of meat and perhaps start dosing with digestive enzymes.

Garrett Smith
05-22-2010, 08:59 PM
I'd say adding in back squats, in the moderate to high-ish reps per set range, would be what you need.

Dave would be correct, IMO, as usual.

For another way of looking at it, is there someone out there you are emulating (in both abilities and bodyweight) who you can say has done what you want to do before? If not, you're probably going to be disappointed.

I'd say you're double or triple over my caloric intake. Something would seem to be incongruous in your training choices and your BW goals.

Derek Weaver
05-22-2010, 11:49 PM
Add in at least another pound of meat and perhaps start dosing with digestive enzymes.

It's possible to get too much protein, even while bulking. the milk, meat and eggs should have him covered.

I've got another question. What does your level of activity look like when not doing all this bodyweight stuff?

No idea how big your college campus is, if you walk to class from your house/apartment, if you've got a job and what kind it is etc.

If you're on your feet all the time between the above activities I've listed along with other stuff (intramurals or some sort of other calorie burning activity) that could put a serious dent in your efforts.

Steve Shafley
05-23-2010, 06:08 AM
POD:

Your goals of mastering gymnastics BWEs and other movements and getting up to a 230# lean bodyweight are at odds with each other.

Somethings got to give. Either the gymnastics stuff or the weight.

Not only that, but there's a vague theory that's been tossed around by some folks that what you do with your body has a direct impact on how it adapts. Gymnastics based BWE training sends a distinct message that lighter = more successful. This is also why running seems so good for stripping off weight, both fat and muscle, the body doesn't want to keep the extra tissue around.

In addition, 6'1" and 230# lean. should be re-evaluated. That is the size of John Grimek, and pushing the envelop on genetic, drug-free muscular bodymass. Casey Butts has some interesting stuff on that topic.

Donald Lee
05-23-2010, 06:19 AM
In addition, 6'1" and 230# lean. should be re-evaluated. That is the size of John Grimek, and pushing the envelop on genetic, drug-free muscular bodymass. Casey Butts has some interesting stuff on that topic.

http://www.weightrainer.net/bodypred.html

He has some articles and an e-book explaining rates of muscle growth for naturals and other relevant stuff.

Brandon Oto
05-23-2010, 07:53 AM
In general the important point may be that it's all well and good to focus on your upper body for gymnastics reasons, but you're going to have a hard time gaining rapidly and substantially without big lower-body lifts.

And yeah your numbers are a little optimistic. But then so are most people's idea of how "lean" they are, so whatever.

Mike ODonnell
05-23-2010, 08:45 AM
230 and lean?? Good luck doing it drug free.

Give yourself nothing but heavy lifting and eating like a horse for a year or two.....if your lucky you'll get to about 270+ not caring about bodyfat, and then spend another 6-12+ months leaning out.

The only people I know close to being 220lbs and lean "drug free" used to be 265+ and are strong as a motherf*kr.

You are highly underestimating how much bodyfat you probably have. If by lean you mean "ripped", then you need to be at least 6% bodyfat (or lower). If you are 220 now and "soft", I'm guessing you are really around 15%+ bodyfat (most people always think they are lower...but they are usually not). Doing the math....

230lbs and 6% BF = 216lbs lean mass
220lb and 15% BF = 187lbs lean mass

So you are wanting another 20lbs of lean muscle quick? Not really going to happen. Again....most people I know near 220lbs and ripped....were very large before 260-280lbs and then leaned out....and they have 600lb+ deadlifts, 350lb+ bench, etc. One example is a guy I know who is an ex-powerlifter who went into bodybuilding....and he would compete on stage at 215lbs ripped and is 6'1". He was not small by any means at 215lbs.

Thinking you need to be a lean 230lbs may require a reality check....as go to some "natural" bodybuilding shows and see that most when "really lean" are hardly over 200lbs. In fact...if you are 195lbs and ripped at 6'1", that would be a pretty big frame, and the leanness will give the illusion of you being 20lbs heavier than you already are (people will guess you are 220). And if you are going just for a "look" of being big, then you target the right upper body muscle groups for it as well, like a Hollywood actor getting in shape for a role....they don't care about huge legs.

Not trying to discourage, just giving the hard facts....so you can just be happy where you are at now and enjoy putting on muscle slow and steady. While making progress is motivating, thinking you "need" to be bigger and huger is a mental trap that will lead to always wanting more and never being happy....many have going down this road, it's not pretty.

I was 220 and thought I was "lean" in college....and was fat and unhappy...always wanting to be "bigger"....now at 185lbs and much much leaner...I am happier and have more self-esteem in the process.

Kevin Perry
05-23-2010, 08:56 AM
juice

Dave Van Skike
05-23-2010, 11:06 AM
body fat %'s are like assholes, everyone thinks they know where theirs is but no one ever looks at it.

PD. You can reach your goal of being around 230 and lean enough to take your shirt off in public. A few percent on either side or a few pounds on either side won't mean shit. It's important to know that you're talking about getting into the upper range of what a strong guy can be and not be a lard ass. this will require hard work.

All the calculators in the world will not tell you what YOU are going to look like at 220and 8% or 18% BF..and really it's irrelevant. Rather than parse it to down to exact numbers. identify the what the goal looks like, and what's included.

bigger?
leaner?
stronger? (please god let this be one of the goals.)
more conditioned?
Healthier?

now start heading in the direction of the number 1 priority. Your goal is basically aesthetic, use a tape measure, critical friends and a mirror to evaluate progress.

First stop..squat rack.

If you have a hard time staying lean at your desire size...do what I did. shave your head and grow freaky beard and do a lot of trap and neck work. prison tats are also a good icebreaker..(maybe that's the other way around). either way, even spry little fellows like me are given a wide berth.

Derek Weaver
05-23-2010, 04:17 PM
body fat %'s are like assholes, everyone thinks they know where theirs is but no one ever looks at it.

PD. You can reach your goal of being around 230 and lean enough to take your shirt off in public. A few percent on either side or a few pounds on either side won't mean shit. It's important to know that you're talking about getting into the upper range of what a strong guy can be and not be a lard ass. this will require hard work.

All the calculators in the world will not tell you what YOU are going to look like at 220and 8% or 18% BF..and really it's irrelevant. Rather than parse it to down to exact numbers. identify the what the goal looks like, and what's included.

bigger?
leaner?
stronger? (please god let this be one of the goals.)
more conditioned?
Healthier?

now start heading in the direction of the number 1 priority. Your goal is basically aesthetic, use a tape measure, critical friends and a mirror to evaluate progress.

First stop..squat rack.

If you have a hard time staying lean at your desire size...do what I did. shave your head and grow freaky beard and do a lot of trap and neck work. prison tats are also a good icebreaker..(maybe that's the other way around). either way, even spry little fellows like me are given a wide berth.

What happens if your ethnic background is such that a freaky beard isn't in the cards? I've had the hair clipped short for ~8 years , but the best I can do is a 70's porn star mustache. The Hawaiian and Japanese in my background doesn't add up to a real solid beard.

Brandon Oto
05-23-2010, 04:39 PM
Per facial hair ideas: this gentleman is the owner of my gym

http://www.elitefts.com/images/staff/cjmurphy.jpg

Just a big teddy bear.

Dave Van Skike
05-23-2010, 05:35 PM
even just a moustache is 100% win.

Alex Bond
05-23-2010, 07:03 PM
POD:

Your goals of mastering gymnastics BWEs and other movements and getting up to a 230# lean bodyweight are at odds with each other.

Somethings got to give. Either the gymnastics stuff or the weight.

Not only that, but there's a vague theory that's been tossed around by some folks that what you do with your body has a direct impact on how it adapts. Gymnastics based BWE training sends a distinct message that lighter = more successful. This is also why running seems so good for stripping off weight, both fat and muscle, the body doesn't want to keep the extra tissue around.

In addition, 6'1" and 230# lean. should be re-evaluated. That is the size of John Grimek, and pushing the envelop on genetic, drug-free muscular bodymass. Casey Butts has some interesting stuff on that topic.

100% truth right here. Getting better at gymnastics and getting bigger are pretty much mutually exclusive. I would say stay the size you are for now and do your gymnastics club while you have the opportunity, then bulk up when you have graduated and can do it right, by squatting 3 times a week.

Patrick Donnelly
05-23-2010, 10:58 PM
Ok, so there's a lot of stuff to respond to, and my draft of this post ended up being way to long, so let me try to condense it one more time...

1. Regarding my reasons for gaining weight: Yes, generally speaking, the heavier you are, the harder gymnastics type stuff is. However, how would putting a few more pounds of muscle directly on my lats and shoulders make a front lever harder? That's basically what I'm trying to do, and it's why I'm laying off doing much leg work, like squats, etc. I realize that the dearth (though not total lack of) lower body movements might make gaining happen a bit more slowly, but if it makes it more directed where I want, that's fine. I'm just confused by the total stop in weight gain, in spite of the gallon of milk.

As a side note, over the past few years, I've taken a handful of circumference measurements a few times, just for curiosity's sake. As I went up from 180bs to 210lbs, my arm measurement increased from roughly 15" to 15.5". I don't know if that's normal, but for a 30lb gain, it doesn't seem to be. Since continuing with more BWE based work staying at 210lbs, then jumping up to 220lbs, that's gone up to 16". I'm in no way relating size to strength, but you can't say that more size doesn't at least give more potential for strength, and in that case, laying off the leg work hasn't negatively impacted my potential for upperbody BWE strength. (Coincidentally, it hasn't even negatively impacted my mediocre lower body lift strength.)

2. Regarding bodyfat goals. I realize that putting specific numbers on bodyfat percentages is kind of silly, since you really can't measure it accurately, and even if you could, it wouldn't matter, but I find it helps label the generalities. Right now, I'd guesstimate I'm at 220lbs/15% (not low-balling the estimate for my ego's sake). My end goal would be something like 230lbs/10%. So, yeah, that's about 20lbs of LBM. I don't have to do that all this summer by any means, though I'd like to get as far as possible (who doesn't like making progress?), and the stalling of the scale doesn't really show that happening.

I've always been under the impression that 230lbs/10% was a reasonable limit for a guy of my height. I'm not sure where I got that impression, but as Dave said, it seems to be right around there where you start turning down the road to lard-ass. I'm not shooting for 230lbs/6%, since that's rapidly moving several steps away from the potential of the average, dedicated Joe, but 230lbs/10% doesn't seem too bad, and as I mentioned before, if it's on the muscles that help you lever, planche, or whatnot, how would it not make levers, planches, and whatnot easier?

Let me be clear that the whole reason for setting a bodyfat guideline isn't even for aesthetics, but just to set a limit on how much dead weight I want on me while I'm hanging from the rings. Please hold your laughter; I'm being serious. I don't take my shirt off in public (Do you?) so that's no reason. Nor do I have any girls to impress in bed with my washboard abz (there are several good threads on IGx about this), so that's no reason either. I'm saying ~10% because that seems to be a reasonable compromise between added effort on the rings and added effort in the kitchen. I could just as easily say 220lbs/6%, since that'd be the same from an LBM perspective, but then that'd just be a pain to do. I'd do it if it'd make a substantial difference in my bodyweight:strength ratio, but otherwise, I like ice cream too much.

3. The "need" to gain weight. I don't need to, but I'd like to. (If I have used the word "need" anywhere before in this thread, I misspoke.) I will not feel like my life is a waste if I never hit 230lbs. I could just as well drop down to 180lbs to make progress on rings skills, but then that'd make partner balancing much more difficult, and that's also important to me. Partner balancing is basically just lifting another person in a series of strength/balance poses, and since that other person's weight is set, the bigger I can be, the more effective of a "base" I could be. Also, I might decide to give a SM competition a go at some point in the future just for the hell of it, but when the classes are normally 231lbs, 265lbs, and SHW, a 180lb guy doesn't stand a chance. So, when picking either down or up in weight as being a move that'd help me accomplish my goals, up seems to be be the better choice in my mind.

Also, tightrope walking doesn't discriminate between heavy or light, so either one works there. The only minor issue is that the heavier you go, the more it hurts your feet, since you have more weight to support, but the same area to support it on (a 3/4" wide strip down the centerline of each foot).

4. Regarding precedents. There was one guy on the club my first year who was 6'0, 240lbs and pretty damn jacked. Guys like him are hard to come by though, in a variety of ways, and I don't use him as an example of what I'm going for. He had a good handstand press, but definitely could have been stronger, simply because he never trained strength moves on rings.

5. Regarding physical activity. In day to day life, I'm not a lazy ass, though I'm generally not working my ass off 24/7 either. This week has just happened to be particularly bad because of yardwork (bamboo clearing), but the weight stall has been going on for longer than that - even during a 5 day period I took as deloading/rest (final exams). As I said before though, I'm shooting for pretty high-volume when it comes to the number of workouts per week, since I want to make a lot of progress on skill based work (like handstands/presses) and hammer the various strength moves I've come to find effective as frequently as possible (you don't get better at something by doing it less). To help maximize volume while minimizing accumulating fatigue, I'm giving intuitive training a shot. This gives me roughly 8-12hrs of working out, plus some tightrope walking. All my workouts are "feeling good," and I can tell I'm making progress on the stuff I'm working, so I figure I'm doing something right with it.

6. Regarding olive oil. Like I mentioned, I've had no positive results with this in the past, when I was trying to break past 190-195lbs, and taking in 5000-8000 calories per day. About 2000-3000 of that was olive oil, and a lot of the rest was ice cream; couldn't get nearly enough good protein from the campus diners (I cook for myself now though). It was delicious - at least the ice cream, not the olive oil - but I hardly gained an ounce from it. Now that I've got the protein (~300g/day is good enough, right?), do you think ~1000 cals of olive oil per day might give me the extra bump I need? I realize I could also get that hypertrophy-inducing nudge from backsquats, but since that's not going to help me at all with my BWE goals, I'd rather leave them out of it.

7. Regarding facial hair. Unfortunately, I can't get much beyond a gnarly neckbeard. It comes in on the upper parts of the face, just no where near thick enough to make it balanced. I've considered shaving my head too, but I've got a feeling that that would leave my head looking awkwardly large.


I think I touched on all the points I meant to. If I missed something you want me to address, please just bring it up again. Believe it or not, this is shorter and more concise than the last draft of this post.

Darryl Shaw
05-24-2010, 07:49 AM
I've got the protein (~300g/day is good enough, right?),

You require 1.2-1.8g of protein per kg of LBM per day so I think it's safe to say that you've got that side of things covered.

do you think ~1000 cals of olive oil per day might give me the extra bump I need?

There's no secret to gaining weight, all it takes is a chronic positive energy balance. Eat more and/or exercise less and you'll get heavier.

If your weight gain has stalled despite your current diet it's probably because there's only so much food you can eat in a day. Once you've hit the limit of what your gut can tolerate you need to start adding more energy dense foods to your diet if you want to continue gaining weight. Clearly fat is the most energy dense macronutrient so extra olive oil will get the job done but, and potentially it's a big ol' butt, fat in excess of immediate requirements is going to be stored because that's the only thing your body can do with it. There is an alternative to shots of olive oil though and it's one that won't be directly converted into lard if you overeat - honey! It's like natures energy gel. :D

http://entomology.ucdavis.edu/news/lizapplegatetalk.html

http://www.nutraingredients.com/Research/Boost-athletic-performance-with-honey

whfoods.org - Honey. (http://whfoods.org/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=96)

Dave Van Skike
05-24-2010, 08:41 AM
Patrick.

230, 10% is not reasonable....230 15% might be. what a lot of people don't realize is that 10% is actually very lean. 6-8% is Bodybuilder freakshow lean.

this is 220 10%-ish. could just as easily be 12%,

http://www.sportssoundoff.net/wp-content/uploads/2009/11/mike-tyson.jpg


Honestly I've seen 180 pound guys be very competitive in LW strongman, becuase they are really really really strong. Why? Well. for starters..they squat, press and pull. For your goals:

Squat press pull.
work on your skills
Do conditioning and diet until you can't pinch any fat on your ass and belly is about as complicated as it ever needs to get.

Anything beyond this is navel gazing of the worst kind. It will not help. It only hurts.

Even though I'm old and my hormonal milieu ain't what it used to be, I've worked in a fairly focused manner for the last three years, squatting pressing and pulling, doing heavy events (and very very very little conditioning) It was never the gaol to put on the 20 pounds of muscle I have, in fact I controlled calories as much as practical but I still walk around above 15%. The constant in play here... Heavy weights.

The type of gain you're talking about is not realistic or likely without them..

Derek Weaver
05-24-2010, 09:29 AM
True what Dave said. 230 lbs @ 10% bodyfat is likely above your genetic muscular potential. Especially with minimal lower body work.

Regarding the guy on your team who was 240 and jacked, be jealous but don't expect that. He's either a) won the genetic lottery and/or b) juiced.

Not to mention that a "few pounds" of muscle on the lats and shoulders will take longer than this summer to achieve. If it's even possible anymore.

The take away: be realistic, continue to have fun,

Steven Low
05-24-2010, 09:39 AM
There was one guy on the club my first year who was 6'0, 240lbs and pretty damn jacked.

If you are referring to Dima he was actually around 200 lbs and jacked. Nowhere close to 240. I know because I asked him -- since we have to know what our weights are on chairs if things if some balancing poses are going to work.

That and he had some beastly Russian genetics.

Likely ~10% BF if that's what Dave is basing the photo above.

You'd probably be better off trying to get 220-230 at 15%. Then try to cut down to 10-12% then maybe rebulk back up depending.

Geoffrey Thompson
05-24-2010, 10:27 AM
1. More meat. Only 1.5#?
2. More squats. Being more massive requires squats. Period.
3. More realistic goals. As others have said, you're no Grimek. But, seriously, Grimek is AWESOME. Have you ever read about him?

Anyway, best bet: put 100# on the main lifts. If you eat to support that, you will be bigger. Of course, your goals might not completely align with that.

Derek Weaver
05-24-2010, 11:51 AM
Doesn't need more meat. 300 grams of protein/day between milk, meat and whatever else he's eating is plenty when gaining. 1-1.5 grams/lb is plenty to get the job done assuming carbs and protein are sufficient for growth.

It's going to be more food in total, more squats, more deadlifts or different goals.

Geoffrey Thompson
05-24-2010, 01:07 PM
I didn't notice he was eating 10 eggs, too.

Patrick Donnelly
05-24-2010, 03:44 PM
If you are referring to Dima he was actually around 200 lbs and jacked. Nowhere close to 240. I know because I asked him -- since we have to know what our weights are on chairs if things if some balancing poses are going to work.

That and he had some beastly Russian genetics.

Likely ~10% BF if that's what Dave is basing the photo above.

You'd probably be better off trying to get 220-230 at 15%. Then try to cut down to 10-12% then maybe rebulk back up depending.
Wait, Dima was only 200lbs? You gotta be kidding me. I swear I heard someone say 240lbs before, and he certainly looked it. But yeah, as I mentioned in my last post, guys like him are rare. However, he was only 200lbs, then that does give me more hope that at 220-230lbs, I could be a solid base for a potential triple illusion. Something like me/Sven/you would be a possibility, no? Of course, that's assuming you trust me enough. :p


Darryl, honey is good stuff, but I never liked schwigging it out of the bottle. Of course, shooting olive oil is even worse (especially when it's warm room temperature stuff) so I think I'll give that a consideration. Just putting some on my meat (chicken + honey = awesome) could probably give a 200-400 good extra calories of nutritionally solid stuff.


Ok, so I'll concede that the numbers I've stated before are probably unreasonable, because my mental perception of what those numbers meant was inaccurate. But that being said, I'm probably still going to shoot for solid 230lbs (as in a 230lbs that isn't me being 220lbs plus 10lbs of food in my stomach that'll be gone by the following afternoon), then start doing some cardio and dieting more carefully to see where that takes me before thinking of making and further changes.

Steven Low
05-24-2010, 04:52 PM
Josh, Scott, and one other person did a triple illusion. You don't a base with massive amounts of weight -- just people with solid illusions who can lean A LOT.

Patrick Donnelly
05-24-2010, 08:19 PM
Those coaches never cease to surprise me. Really though, with the number of times they have surprised me, I should no longer be surprised when I hear stuff like that.

Darryl Shaw
05-25-2010, 07:22 AM
Darryl, honey is good stuff, but I never liked schwigging it out of the bottle. Of course, shooting olive oil is even worse (especially when it's warm room temperature stuff) so I think I'll give that a consideration. Just putting some on my meat (chicken + honey = awesome) could probably give a 200-400 good extra calories of nutritionally solid stuff.

If you don't like the idea of taking honey straight from the bottle you may want to consider adding some healthy high calorie snacks to your diet. Eating just 100g of raisins + 50g of redskin peanuts a day for example would add an easy 579 kcal to your diet with 86g of carbs, 16g of protein and 25.5g of fat plus a healthy dose of resveratrol.

Brandon Oto
05-27-2010, 05:13 PM
Some useful wisdom here for lean body mass: http://www.weightrainer.net/potential.html

Gant Grimes
05-28-2010, 08:11 AM
I read the title, read DVS's correct advice, saw that it was ignored, and skipped everything after page 1.

squat more. press more. pull more. i'm afraid it's that simple.

That's it. That's f'n it. Any good plan for mass gain, including diet, should be able to be written on a 3x3" post-it. Any longer and it sucks.

Here's the plan I have used for getting bigger and stronger.

1) Squat, press, pull, and carry. Heavy and often.

2) Eat 100g whey + 2 lbs. of meat every day as a baseline. Then eat whatever on top of that.

It's stupid that this always takes up four pages with everybody pontificating about what works and what to tweak. You're smart enough to know what to do Patrick. You're also smart enough to know that you can't reconcile incompatible goals.

Dave answered the question three posts in. Take it or leave it.

Anoop Balachandran
05-28-2010, 08:32 AM
Even if you gain weight, with all the body weight stuff you are doing, it is guaranteed that you won't put much muscle.

So when you cut down from 250 back to 220 or 230 whatever, you won't look anywhere close to what you are expecting.

The whole point of bulking up is to put on as much as muscle as possible. Not to eat a lot of food and get fat and cut back.

An it is not about milk, it is about getting as many calories the easy way. When eat that much food, protein intake is the least thing to worry about. You will get enough and more.

Steven Low
05-28-2010, 12:45 PM
Even if you gain weight, with all the body weight stuff you are doing, it is guaranteed that you won't put much muscle.

Absolutely wrong.

Dave Van Skike
05-28-2010, 12:52 PM
Absolutely wrong.

it's a scientifical fact that gymnastics will leave a person frail and unmuscular.:rolleyes:

Anoop Balachandran
05-28-2010, 02:32 PM
So are you saying he is better off doing body weight stuff than doing squats, dead lift and press's with weights if he wants to put muscle?

He might put some muscle but that's definitely limited because there is no progression in weights with body weight stuff.

Steven Low
05-28-2010, 02:53 PM
So are you saying he is better off doing body weight stuff than doing squats, dead lift and press's with weights if he wants to put muscle?

No.

He might put some muscle but that's definitely limited because there is no progression in weights with body weight stuff.

This is the part that is wrong. There is progression implemented through multiple ways of decreasing leverage.

Kevin Perry
05-28-2010, 02:55 PM
So are you saying he is better off doing body weight stuff than doing squats, dead lift and press's with weights if he wants to put muscle?

He might put some muscle but that's definitely limited because there is no progression in weights with body weight stuff.

Says the armchair exercise science expert

Geoffrey Thompson
05-28-2010, 02:56 PM
Though I believe we would all agree about the lower body, Steven Low's contention is that bodyweight exercises can be used to gain significant strength and mass on the upper body through gymnastic progressions. I believe he's written extensively on the topic on his web page. I still think barbells are better for it, but some of the gymnastic progressions would certainly require you to develop significant amounts of strength.

Anoop Balachandran
05-28-2010, 03:22 PM
There are some crazy ways to use your body weight. Ross has some stuff in Never Gymless and I am pretty sure there are more creative stuff that people can do if they think about it.

And for someone who "wants to get hyoooge" and wants to get 240lbs, I am not sure sticking with body weight exercises is the best advice, unless he just cannot find a gym or something.

Steven Low
05-28-2010, 04:27 PM
Weights are definitely superior for lower body in almost all instances (although some people can get pretty huge off just doing sprinting and stuff like that).

Weights can and would help getting big in the upper body that much is obvious.

Based on where Patrick currently is with his gymnastics progressions (actually having seen him do them and being his actual coach IRL -- although not doing his programming for him).... correctly implemented bodyweight work would help him gain mass at least on par with weights. Strength most definitely.

I think he can attest to such if he wants to post again.

Anyway, that's my last post here. This isn't very productive.

Garrett Smith
05-29-2010, 06:31 AM
There's really two things here.

Patrick's perception of a "role model" here was, by him, admittedly skewed. The 6' 240# ripped/jacked guy was actually only 200#. As also mentioned, he might be bumping the ceiling of drug-free lean mass at his goal weight. Not easy to get to either, I'm sure Grimek would agree, and Grimek was (I'm guessing) very BB/DB-centric in his own training.

Lastly, his BW program...simply isn't working even in the context of a massive surplus of calories. If it isn't working, change something.

How about this compromise? Weighted dips and weighted pull-ups. Don't forget the back squats.