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    Muscle gaining secrets Muscle gaining secrets Document Transcript

    • Mantesh
    • 2 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ All rights reserved. No part of this e-book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without the expressed written permission from Jason Ferruggia.We have unique tracking codes embedded, designed to detect illegal distribution of this e-book and the download links. Do not risk breaking international copyright infringement laws and getting yourself in major trouble. Fines start at $150,000 and include a possi- ble prison sentence upon conviction. Muscle Gaining Secrets 2.0 T r a i n i n g M a n u a l By Jason Ferruggia Mantesh
    • ou must get your physician’s approval before beginning this exercise program. These rec- ommendations are not medical guidelines but are for educational purposes only. You must consult your physician prior to starting this program or if you have any medical condition or injury that contraindicates physical activity. This program is designed for healthy individuals 18 years and older only. The information in this report is not meant to supplement, nor replace, proper exercise train- ing. All forms of exercise pose some inherent risks. The editors and publishers advise readers to take full responsibility for their safety and know their limits. Before practicing the exercises in this book, be sure that your equipment is well-maintained, and do not take risks beyond your level of experience, aptitude, training and fitness. The exercises and dietary programs in this book are not intended as a substitute for any exercise routine or treatment or dietary regimen that may have been prescribed by your physician. Don’t lift heavy weights if you are alone, inexperienced, injured, or fatigued. Always ask for instruction and assistance when lifting. Don’t perform any exercise without proper instruction. See your physician before starting any exercise or nutrition program. If you are taking any med- ications, you must talk to your physician before starting any exercise program, including Muscle Gaining Secrets. If you experience any lightheadedness, dizziness, or shortness of breath while exercising, stop the movement and consult a physician. You must have a complete physical examination if you are sedentary, if you have high choles- terol, high blood pressure, or diabetes, if you are overweight, or if you are over 30 years old. Please discuss all nutritional changes with your physician or a registered dietician. This publica- tion is intended for informational use only. Jason Ferruggia and www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com will not assume any liability or be held responsible for any form of injury, personal loss or illness caused by the utilization of this information. 3 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Disclaimer Y
    • 4 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ “What more could I say, I wouldn’t be here today if the old school didn’t pave the way.” —Grand Puba, Brand Nubian Before we get started I have to thank the Iron Game pioneers for teaching me, guiding me and allowing me to do what I do for a living. I’m old school through and through (as you’ll see from the quotes throughout this manual) and have always done my best to honor those who paved the way. I’m talking about guys like Arthur Saxon, George Hackenshmidt, Paul Anderson, Herman Goerner, Bill Pearl, Larry Scott, Vince Gironda, Reg Park, Ed Coan, Bill Kazmaier, Kirk Kawoski, Dorian Yates, Louie Simmons, Marvin Eder, Peary Rader, Anthony Ditillo, John McCallum, Steve Reeves, John Grimek, Leroy Colbert, Dave Draper, Ed Corney, Mike Mentzer, Don Howorth, Bob Gajda, Dr. Ken Leistner, Bill Starr and, of course, Arnold Schwarzenegger. (My apologies to anyone who I forgot). Thanks Dedication
    • 5 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ How Bad Do You Want It?................................................7 Train, Don’t “Work Out”................................................10 The Importance of Physical Strength...............................13 Progressive Overload .......................................................17 The 7 Critical Factors......................................................21 Intensity ...........................................................................33 Recovery Methods...........................................................36 Mass Building Nutrition..................................................41 The Workouts..................................................................44 Questions & Answers......................................................78 Meet The Program Creator .............................................98 Resources.........................................................................99 Contents Mantesh
    • “No citizen has the right to be an amateur in the matter of physical training; it is part of his profession as a citizen to keep himself in good condition, ready to serve his state at a moments notice… What a disgrace it is for a man to grow old without ever seeing the beauty and strength of which his body is capable.” —Socrates Mantesh
    • How Bad Do You Want It?
    • 8 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ wasn’t born with Herculean genetics. I was skinny-fat for most of my childhood. No mus- cle, no definition; just small, soft and weak. If ever there was a true “hardgainer” it was me. I started strength training at twelve years old, and five years later graduated high school weighing a massively muscled 147 pounds (please note the strong sarcasm) at six feet tall. When the wind blew I had to grab onto the nearest tree. If you’re reading this chances are good that you’re in the same boat. You’ve tried and failed before and may be getting frustrated or ready to give up. But you don’t have to. There is hope for guys like us… IF, and only if, you’re willing to work for it. If you were looking for an easy solution to your problems and for me to wave a magical wand over you that would instantly add twenty pounds of muscle to your frame I’m sorry to say but you’re shit out of luck. You may as well stop reading right now and take up chess. To get big you have to put in the time and effort. You have to train your balls off, eat, sleep and repeat; over and over again. You have to be willing to do what others are not. You have to have the dedication of a championship athlete and be relent- less in the pursuit of your goals. I “It is a well-known fact that the majority of men today are relatively weak.” —George Hackenshmidt, The Way to Live, 1908 Mantesh
    • 9 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Most people can’t do that. They can’t commit to any- thing. They can’t put in the hard work required for great- ness. They’ll miss training sessions, skip meals and go out drinking ‘til all hours of the night. As a result they never get anywhere. Their physiques always look the same, year after year, and they will make excuse after excuse for their fail- ures. Don’t be like everyone else. Don’t get caught up in pro- gram hopping or constantly surfing the internet for a better way or a faster, easier solutions to your problems. If it were easy everyone would do it. If there were a magic bullet we’d all look like Arnold in his prime. But there isn’t. There’s only commitment, hard work and patience. Without those three things you’ll never make any sort of impressive gains no matter what program or supple- ment you use. Hell, you could even take steroids and get lackluster results if the required dedication isn’t in you. Be one of the few; one of the five percent of people on this earth that can actually set their sights on a goal and then do whatever it takes to achieve it. Make your mark and prove the naysayers wrong. Don’t swim in the cesspool of mediocrity with everyone else. Rise above and become the person you truly want to be.
    • Train, Don’t “Work Out”
    • 11 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ “train”, I don’t “work out”. I have never “worked out” in my entire life. There is a huge difference between the two. I can’t work out. I don’t know how. Even if I did I would never do it. It’s what “they” do, and I will never be one of “them.” I only know one way and that is to go to the gym and train hard. If I can’t do that, I won’t bother going. Mindlessly going through the motions to get a “good workout” is not something I have ever been interested in. I train and I constantly strive to make progress. I “The Iron never lies to you. You can walk outside and listen to all kinds of talk, get told that you're a god or a total bastard. The Iron will always kick you the real deal. The Iron is the great reference point, the all-knowing perspective giver. Always there like a beacon in the pitch black. I have found the Iron to be my greatest friend. It never freaks out on me, never runs. Friends may come and go. But two hundred pounds is always two hundred pounds." —Henry Rollins
    • 12 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Training is so much more than working out. It helps you get to know yourself better. It shows you what you’re really made of and how hard you’re willing to work and persevere to overcome an obstacle. Training is a release. It's a time to leave all the problems of the world behind and go to battle with yourself or your training partners. The iron can be your best friend and your worst enemy all at once. But it will always be there for you when you need it. When you establish this kind of relationship with the iron you will have something so much more meaningful than those who simply go to the gym to get a pump, pick up girls, and socialize. Working out is what the general public does to get in a little better shape. They go to the gym because they have to. They don’t love it, and they don’t live for it. But to those of us who feel most at home pushing heavy weight in some hole-in-the-wall hardcore gym, training is our passion. I've gone to battle with the iron and come out on the losing end many times. I've sweat, bled, and puked…all in the same workout. But I do it because I love it. The quest for strength is one of man’s basic instincts. It is something that has been pursued fer- vently since the beginning of time, because, as the old cliché goes, only the strong survive. Lifting weights can have an endless array of health benefits, but let’s be honest—that's not why we do it. The people at the local fitness center do it for those reasons, but not us. We do it for that feeling of going to battle, the rush of hitting a new max, and to meet the chal- lenge of pain and suffering that come along with it. We do it because we love to set goals and bust our asses in pursuit of them. We do it because it allows us to release all our pent-up anger and aggression. We do it because we know most others don't have the balls to train like we do. We do it for that feeling of camaraderie and competition amongst training partners. We do it for the high that you can only get when you have a mind-numbingly heavy weight in your hands, straining for all that you're worth, while your training partners are screaming in your ear, loud metal or hip hop is blasting on the radio, and you’re slowly grinding toward that goal you've been chasing. That is why we do what we do.
    • The Importance of Physical Strength
    • 14 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ here are few things more important in life than physical strength. This may sound outlandish to some of you given that the technology in today’s world has replaced the need to do so much manual labor, but it’s true. It’s been true since the beginning of time when we had to fight for our survival, and it will remain true no matter how many machines they build or how advanced technology gets. There is no more basic alpha-male instinct than the quest for strength. The old saying “only the strongest shall survive” has never lost its meaning or relevance because it is an eternal and universal truth. T “Every man in every walk of life is certain, sooner or later, to be confronted with a heavy object, bulk or otherwise, which he strongly desires to lift. This may occur both in his busi- ness and in his private life, and I am willing to bet that each and every man on such an occa- sion entertains a certain amount of regret for the wasted hours which he might have advan- tageously devoted to practice with weights.” —Arthur Saxon, 1910
    • 15 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Though we no longer need to capture and kill our food and we now have the comfort of mod- ern amenities, physical strength is no less important. Every physical task that you engage in will be significantly easier and done with much greater proficiency if you are strong. High levels of strength boost confidence levels and help you survive in today’s society. Given the statistics on crime and other unforeseen problems such as storms, natural disasters and car accidents that the average man can encounter on a regular basis, it’s irresponsible not to maximize your strength lev- els which in turn maximize your chances of survival. Without strength, how can you even consider yourself a real man? How can you look in the mirror and live with yourself if you see a pathetically weak image staring back at you? How can you protect your wife or girlfriend, command the respect of your peers, or be a role model to your kids? Strength is what separates the men from the boys in today’s society, and despite what certain individuals may try to tell you, the quest for it is nothing to be ashamed of. Those who put you down for going to a gym to lift heavy weights are ashamed of who they are. They call us “meat- heads” and make jokes when we are not around (they rarely have the balls to say them to our faces), but it’s their own lack of strength, and their lack of the discipline it takes to make gains that makes them feel inferior. They have either tried to improve their bodies and failed, or they never had the guts to try at all. They’ll try to tell you you’re wasting your time—“be normal and come out drinking with us instead of going to the gym,” they’ll say. Forget about them. If you were satisfied with being normal, you wouldn’t be reading this. Train, eat, sleep, follow the programs in this manual, and stay the course—you’ll make fools of those people in no time. Now, I know that some of you may be thinking to yourselves right now, “I just want to get big, I don’t care about getting strong.” Not only is that the wrong attitude to take but it will cause you to fail in your attempt to build massive amounts of size. For those that don't already know, there are a few different ways to make progress in your workouts; you can increase the load (lift heavier weights), you can increase the density (do more work in the same time frame), and you can even do the same amount of work in less time. But I can guarantee you that if you are still using the same weights today that you were using two years ago, or even three months ago, you are not making progress. You simply cannot get significantly bigger without lifting heavier weights. You can set the stop- watch and do all your little supersets and drop sets until you are blue in the face, but a 135-pound squat is still a 135 pound-squat, no matter how you do it. The fastest and easiest way to get bigger is to lift more weight and get stronger. People want to make every excuse under the sun and will try every system they can find to get around this simple
    • 16 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ fact. One of my favorite excuses is that what I am suggesting is impossible because no one can continue to get strong forever and continually add weight to the bar. If that were possible, then the world would be filled with 1,000-pound bench pressers, they say. As opposed to all of the 405- pound benchers out there, right? Right. How many times do you ever see a single human being in a public gym bench press 405 pounds?! One guy out of 1,000 maybe? Give me a freaking break! Yes, it’s true; no one can keep adding weight to the bar indefinitely. But who (name me one guy you know personally) has ever maxed out their strength levels?! Not one person! Not a single, solitary soul! Why don't you see tons of extremely strong guys in the gym everyday? Because most people have no idea how to train properly and make progress. To further emphasize my point about the importance of getting brutally strong, I ask you to look at powerlifters—guys whose only purpose in training is to lift really heavy weights— and the incredible size and thickness they possess (this holds true even with lighter powerlifters). Tons of people lift weights on a regular basis; many of them would even consider themselves body- builders. But why aren’t more of them significantly bigger? Why do so many people who use light weights and pumping workouts not possess anywhere near the muscularity of the average power- lifter? I’ll tell you why; it’s because the only way to build that kind of real, lasting muscular size is by training heavy. THE BOTTOM LINE If you only take a few ideas from this manual, this is one of the most important ones. You must strive to get stronger and consistently be adding weight to the bar if you ever want to see signifi- cant, head turning muscle growth. If this wasn’t the case then why is it that everyone who is incredibly strong is also usually incredibly big? Have you ever seen someone who can bench press four hundred pounds or squat five hundred and is small? Probably not, because not too many of those people exist. Now, that doesn’t mean you have to, nor will you be able to increase weight or reps at every single workout (and attempting to do so when you’re not feeling it on that particular day will lead to injury). The point to remember is that over time, on a month-to-month basis, you should grad- ually be getting stronger and stronger. And when you compare your weights from today with your weights six months from now they should be significantly different. Remember… Only the strong survive.
    • Progressive Overload
    • 18 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ ost people spend the majority of their time in a state of homeostasis. This means that they aren’t building muscle and they aren’t losing muscle. The only way to disrupt this state of homeostasis is to impose great stress on the body. Stress can come in many different forms, such as mental, emotional, and physical. For the purpose of building muscle, we want to focus on physical stress. Here’s a basic example of the effects of a physical stress. When a person lies out in the sun for the first time at the beginning of summer, he is applying a form of stress to the body. The body adapts to the stress by darkening the skin—either burning or tanning. If you lie out for just the right amount of time, you will get tan. If you lie out for too long, you will get burned. The body will adapt in one way or the other. Let’s assume that you didn’t overdo it and were able to get tan in the 15 minutes you spent lying out. What would happen if you continued to lay in the sun for 15 minutes every day? Would you get tanner? Only for a short time and then you’d plateau. Your body will adapt to the 15 minutes of daily sun exposure and that becomes your new level of homeostasis. To achieve a deeper tan, you will need to lie out for a longer amount of time or use less sunblock. But doing the same thing over and over again will not elicit an adaptation response. You need to remember this important point when you are training: doing the exact same thing over and over, be it lying out in the sun for the same amount of time or lifting the same weight for the same number of sets and reps, will not force the body to adapt in any significant way. So keep in mind that you need to force the body to do more over the course of time. M “Everybody wanna be a bodybuilder, but don’t nobody wannna lift no heavy ass weight!” —Mr. Olympia, Ronnie Coleman
    • 19 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Another example of this is a person who just starts a manual labor job. The new demands placed upon the body will leave the worker extremely fatigued at the end of each day. The body, however, will begin to accept this level of activity as the new homeostasis and, in time, will adapt. Eventually the worker will not be overly fatigued from his daily regimen because the body will have successfully adapted to it. You need to impose stress on the body in a way that it is not used to in order to force adaptation. For the purposes of building size and strength that can be done by lifting more weight, doing more reps with the same weight or increasing your training volume. Once you impose the new demands, your body will adapt and reach a new level of homeostasis. After imposing a new demand on the body, the initial response is always fatigue. The body will fight to return to its previous level of homeostasis, but will not stop there. It wants to be prepared for that demand the next time it’s faced with it, so the body will actually super or overcompensate and build itself up bigger and stronger. That is the training effect. How do you know if you have recovered and thus achieved the training effect? It’s very simple; you will be able to exceed your previous performance in the gym (lift heavier weights or do more reps with the same weight). If you have two workouts in a row where you can’t exceed your pre- vious performance you probably either did too many sets, trained for too long, didn’t take enough time between workouts, didn’t eat or sleep properly, or didn’t use proper recovery methods. HOWEVER, this does not mean that you will be able to make progress at every single work- out. If that were possible you would be setting world records within just a few years. Take what I just said into account and keep it in the back of your mind at all times but realize that you’re only human and you will have good days and bad days. Some days you may be able to go up five pounds with no problem. Other days you may barely be able to repeat your previous perfor- mance. This is not the end of the world. It’s actually quite normal to have one bad workout for every six to eight good ones. Some days you may be able to improve on two exercises, maintain one and might even be weaker on another. The workout would still be considered a success. And despite everything I said above homeosta- sis can actually be a good thing from time to time for the simple fact that your muscles adapt faster than your joints and tendons do. Read that last line again and let it sink in. What that means is that although the muscles may be capable of lifting a heavier weight, the connective tissue needs a little bit more time to adapt. If you continually push your weights up at too fast of a rate you may end up with connective tissue damage, achy joints and maybe even some serious injuries.
    • 20 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ So take it slow and invest in some Fractional Plates http://jasonferruggia.com/fractionalplates. Go up little by little and don’t be overanxious to add ten pounds per workout. Sure, you will be capable of this at the beginning but realize over time that this rate of progress will not be sustain- able or healthy. The main thing to remember is that you want to be getting stronger every month, not necessar- ily on every exercise at every single workout. If, at the end of this month you can squat five pounds more than you could at the beginning of the month your training would be considered a success that would have you on pace to add sixty pounds to your squat this year. That’s nothing to shake a stick at and is a great rate of progress. Moving significantly faster than this can lead to earlier stagnation or injury. THE BOTTOM LINE Remember, effective training in its simplest form is applying a new stress to the body that it is not used to or prepared for which forces adaptation and then recovery. This can also be called the law of progressive overload. The end result is a bigger and stronger muscle. This is why, over time, you must strive to get stronger by adding weight to the bar or doing more reps with the same weight. You simply cannot do the same thing over and over again, for months on end or are you are wasting your time and will never get anywhere.
    • The 7 Critical Factors
    • 22 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ hen it comes to constructing the ultimate training plan, there are seven critical fac- tors that need to be addressed and they are: • Exercise selection • Training volume • Number of reps used • Rep speed • Rest intervals between sets • Training session length • Training session and body part frequency FACTOR # 1: EXERCISE SELECTION The best exercises are always multi-joint, compound, movements such as squats, deadlifts, rows, dips, chin ups and military presses that use free weights or bodyweight as resistance. There are no machine exercises that could ever compare. My advice is to avoid the majority of them. Leg presses are one of the few exceptions. Here’s another good rule of thumb: Any exercise that makes you look like a fruitcake in any manner is instantly disqualified as a useful exercise. Remember that important tip. Another characteristic of the best exercises is that they are usually those that allow you to use the most weight. The more weight you can handle for a particular body part, the greater the growth stimulus. For example, a close-grip bench press is way more effective than a triceps exten- sion because you can use triple or quadruple the amount of weight. A Romanian deadlift is a far better hamstring exercise than a leg curl for the same reason. Along those lines, bench presses will always blow flys and cable crossovers off the map because someone who can bench 315 usually can only use 40’s on a fly. That’s more than a 200-pound difference between the two exercises. Yet another marker of a great mass building exercise is that it allows you to move your body through space instead of simply moving your limbs. Let me explain… W
    • 23 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Every four years, when the Summer Olympics roll around, I am, without fail, asked the same question on an almost daily basis. “What do I have to do to look like those Olympic gymnasts?” With gymnastics being one of the most widely covered Olympic sports, everyone talks about the awe-inspiring physiques displayed by these amazing athletes. What’s really interesting about gymnasts is the fact that they do not train for size, yet they dis- play unbelievable levels of muscularity. This is because of the kinds of exercises they do. Every exercise a gymnast does involves moving his body through space. He never moves a fixed object around his body (like you do with most weight training machines). By moving your own body weight (such as you do in a chin up or parallel bar dip) or your own body weight plus added resis- tance (such as when you do a traditional barbell squat) through space, you increase neuromuscu- lar activation. A higher level of neuromuscular activation means that the nerves are sending a stronger signal to the muscles to recruit more fibers. This is very important because the nerves control muscle maintenance and development. If you cut a nerve to a muscle you will find that atrophy begins almost immediately. The loss of a nerve signal will actually induce muscle loss faster than lack of use. On the other hand, when you force the nerves to organize the action of a lot of muscle fibers at once, you allow for a lot of growth and strength to develop. Besides just moving your body through space, exercises that require balance and coordination will further increase the nervous system activity. Stabilizer muscles are also called upon heavily to steady the load, so you get more complete muscular development. For all of the reasons above I am a huge proponent of exercises like dips, chin ups, inverted rows, weighted pushups and squats. FACTOR # 2: TRAINING VOLUME Training volume can basically be defined in its simplest form as the total number of sets you do at any given workout. A more complete definition would be the total amount of weight lifted dur- ing the workout. This can be determined by multiplying the weight lifted by the total number of sets and reps. Therefore if you squatted 150 pounds for three sets of ten, the formula would look like this: 150lbs x 3 sets x 10 reps= 4500. Research and empirical evidence has shown that most people will make their fastest gains in muscular bodyweight with a total of 50-100 reps per week, per body part. Any more than that and you will start running into recovery issues which will lead to overtraining.
    • 24 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ How many sets should I do per workout? Despite what you see most people doing in public gyms (and getting nowhere because of it), total training volume should be limited to no more than 15-20 total, top-end work sets per work- out. When you focus on quality sets and always try to beat the logbook while making progressive strength gains you’ll soon realize that all of those other junk sets were a waste of time. Once you’ve beaten your previous best the muscle doesn’t need much more stimulation. All the extra sets will do is make recovery between workouts harder and harder. FACTOR # 3: NUMBER OF REPS USED Most typical bodybuilding programs advocate that you always train with 8-12 reps. I am here to tell you that is one of the single biggest mistakes you can ever make as a skinny hardgainer. The best rep range for skinny guys trying to build muscle is 5-8; that’s where the magic happens. Following is a closer look at each rep range and a brief description of what they’re good for. 1-4 Reps: Training in this range improves the firing rate of the central nervous system (CNS). This is the best rep range for pure strength gains. It should be included your program from time to time since the maximal strength developed training in this rep range will allow you to use more weight on your higher rep sets which will lead to more muscle growth. 5-8 Reps: Training is this range causes hypertrophy (growth) of the fast twitch muscle fibers. These fibers have the greatest potential for growth and thus, this range should be the main focus of your train- ing. The type of growth that results from this type of training is called myofibrillar hypertrophy and is the longest lasting form of muscle growth; meaning that if you stopped training for a while these size gains would remain with you longer than size gains made with lighter weights and higher reps. The great thing about lower reps versus higher reps when it comes to training for size and strength is that they don’t induce anywhere near as much overall systemic fatigue or soreness. If you aren’t as sore or fatigued you are able to train at a higher level more frequently. This will, of course, lead to faster gains.
    • 25 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ “The best programs for building size are those utilizing approximately six to eight repetitions and multiple sets of the same exercise.” —Larry Scott, the first Mr. Olympia 9-14 Reps: It is typically thought that training in this range causes growth of the slow twitch muscle fibers and leads to sarcoplasmic hypertrophy. Sarcoplasm is basically filler goo inside the muscles that pumps up with higher volume training. It is also said that gains made in this rep range have little effect on maximal strength or performance. Time has taught us that both of these concepts are largely mythical. What higher reps actually do is increase your muscles ability to store glycogen locally. Therefore if you train in this range your muscles will appear slightly bigger but it’s only because of the fact that you are storing more fluid in them. Your body gets more effective at doing that by training in this rep range. More rock solid, lasting muscle growth can be built in the lower rep ranges but if you want to look as big as possible you should also include a small amount of work in this rep range in your training program on a regular basis. The one caveat that needs to be mentioned is that I consider
    • 26 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ “Due to the nervous emotional make up of the underweight hardgainer, I never recommend more than 3-4 sets of 6-8 repetitions.” —The Iron Guru, Vince Gironda high reps to be about eight, with some occasional sets of ten. Anything above ten reps will be a waste of time for just about all drug-free skinny guys who are serious about packing on muscle. FACTOR # 4: REP SPEED Muscles are made for speed. Don’t ignore this fact and try to force them to do something they are not meant to do. Any time you see a program written with a slow concentric (the lifting por- tion of the exercise) speed, get up and walk away; it's garbage. You should never lift a weight slowly if you’re trying to get big and strong. It makes no sense. When would you ever consciously lift something slowly in real life? If you bend down to pick up a box, do you count a full four seconds on your way up? Of course not. It’s a ridiculous and incredibly flawed concept. The fact is your fast-twitch muscle fibers have the greatest potential for growth, and are only called upon maximally when a load is either heavy or the attempt to move it is made with great speed.
    • 27 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ A slow rep speed ensures that the load cannot be incredibly heavy, nor will it be moved with great speed—so it basically limits the involvement of the fast-twitch fibers and thus the potential for growth. Brilliant idea, huh? So always try to accelerate the load when lifting weights and never go purposely slow to “feel the burn” or any of that nonsense. The lowering portion of an exercise is a different story. You should always control the eccen- tric (or lowering) phase of every exercise you do. You never want to drop the weight, but rather take about two seconds to lower it under control. That’s it, though! Just be sure that if you had to you could stop the exercise at any point in the range of motion; it should not be just flying down out of control. Don’t purposefully go any slower than two seconds, however. The problem with using slow, heavy eccentrics on a regular basis is that doing so takes a lot out of you and leads to much greater levels of soreness. The result is that you are not as fresh and ready to train as frequently as you should be. If you want to get stronger faster, then you need to be able to train a muscle more frequently. The more frequently you can train the same muscle group or lift, in a fresh and recovered state, the faster progress you’ll make. FACTOR # 5: REST INTERVALS BETWEEN SETS Rest intervals are dependent on a few different variables such as the exercise being used, the size and experience of the lifter and the desired training effect. In simple terms, long rest periods (2-3 minutes) allow for greater recovery of the nervous system. Shorter rest intervals (45-90 sec- onds) target the metabolic system and are linked with an increase in growth hormone and testos- terone production. Beginners can get away with shorter rest periods than more experienced lifters. They don’t have the capability of recruiting a large number of motor units and thus don’t tire out as easily. Beginners are also weak, in most cases, so they are not using very heavy loads that would demand longer recovery periods. A bigger, heavier lifter will require more rest between sets than a lighter lifter. Even at the same body weight, a stronger lifter will require more rest as well. This is because the stronger lifter is more neurologically efficient and is able to recruit more muscle fibers, which is more draining and takes longer to recover from.
    • 28 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ What this means is that as a beginner you can recruit, let’s say, 70% of your available muscle fibers. As you get more advanced you can recruit a greater percentage of muscle fibers, maybe upwards of 90 or even closer to 100%. This is far more demanding and requires a longer rest period. If someone is in great anaerobic condition, he requires less rest than his not-so-well con- ditioned counterparts—all other factors being equal. Another thing that needs to be addressed when you are picking the optimal rest periods is that they can vary widely from one exercise to the next. You don’t need anywhere as much rest after a set of dips as you do after a set of deadlifts. So it is actually the exercise, how many muscles it works, how much weight you are able to use on it, and how draining it is on the body that needs to be considered when determining optimal rest periods. All that being said, I believe in keeping rest periods as short as possible. Of course, this should be within reason and you never want to be out of breath when starting a set. But you should strive to increase your work capacity and be able to use lower rest periods over time. This builds more muscle mass, burns more body-fat, improves conditioning and is more “func- tional.” By that I mean that there will never be a time in real life or on the sporting field where you will exert force for 10-20 seconds and then have four or five minutes to sit on your ass. For these reasons I recommend always keeping rest periods in the range of 45-90 seconds. The exception to this rule would be if you were doing straight sets of a big exercise like squats or deadlifts. In that case you could extend the rest periods as high as three minutes. “For God’s sake, people, STAY IN SHAPE!” —Louie Simmons
    • 29 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ STRAIGHT SETS This is the typical approach to training that nearly everyone uses. Straight sets means doing one set of a particular exercise, followed by a rest period, and then another set of the same exercise and so on. You do not mix in another exercise between sets; you simply continue to do the same exercise you are doing until you have completed all of the prescribed sets. This method is usually used with speed work such as Olympic lifts and jumps and with full–body exercises like squats and deadlifts or when working up to a heavy set of barbell presses. However, straight sets are not very time-efficient, and in a lot of cases, using them is not the optimal way to train; especially on assistance exercises. ANTAGONISTIC OR NON-COMPETING SUPERSETS These are very time efficient and highly effective techniques that should be used as often as pos- sible. Antagonistic supersets are when you pair up exercises that work opposing muscle groups, such as the pecs (chest) and lats (back). These muscles move the arms and shoulders in opposite directions, so by training them together, you can work a lot of muscle in a short time and see that both areas get equal attention (helping guarantee muscle balance). You do a set for one muscle group, rest, then do a set for the other muscle group, rest again, and repeat for all the prescribed sets. For example, after a heavy set of six reps on the bench press, it may take you two minutes to be able to repeat that effort. Rather than just sit on the bench waiting for all that time, you could alternate your bench presses with an antagonistic exercise like an incline dumbbell row and divide the rest period in half. So now you would rest sixty seconds after your bench presses and then move on to the rows. After the rows, you would rest another sixty seconds and then go back to the bench press, and so on until you completed all of the prescribed sets. Due to workout design there will be times when you won’t be able to pair up antagonists effec- tively. This is where non-competing supersets come in. Non-competing supersets usually pair muscles that have no apparent relation to each other, such as the neck and biceps or shrugs and abs.
    • 30 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ FACTOR # 6: TRAINING SESSION LENGTH In 1925 Alan Calvert wrote a manual titled, “The First Course in Body-Building and Muscle Development Exercises.” He advised that workouts were never to exceed 45 minutes. I agree and have always abided by this rule. When you begin a training session, your body starts to increase the secretion of growth hor- mone and testosterone. The release of these anabolic hormones falls back to baseline at around 45 minutes then drop off significantly after that. These are, of course, rough numbers and every- one is different but I like to stick with the 45-minute time frame as a general rule. Training for sig- nificantly longer than this can also start to increase the release of cortisol, which is a catabolic hormone that eats away muscle tissue and increases the storage of body-fat. When trying to remain in an anabolic state (a condition wherein your body can build muscle), you want to keep your testosterone levels higher and your cortisol levels lower. For this reason I recommend that you always limit your workouts to 45 minutes (not including warm up time). After the 45-minute mark, you will also find your performance starting to suffer. Your mental focus will begin to fade. It is difficult for most people to give all they have, set after set for much longer than 45 minutes. Limiting your workouts to this amount of time ensures that your mental focus will be high right from the get go and remain so throughout the duration of your workout. If you enter the gym knowing that you have two hours ahead of you, it can often be difficult to get fired up enough to really attack the task as hand. If you know you will be in and out of the gym in under an hour, it’s a lot easier to get amped up for the hard work ahead. For all these rea- sons, I recommend that you get a stopwatch or Gym Boss Interval Timer http://jasonferruggia.com/gymboss and use it to keep your workouts in the 45-minute range. This is a great way to guarantee consistent progress and to avoid overtraining.
    • 31 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ FACTOR # 7: TRAINING FREQUENCY Most skinny guys get their best size gains by doing four hard workouts per week. Three is okay but when you consider how many hours there are in the week you’ll see that four is really a bet- ter option. It doesn’t really make sense to have more off days per week than training days. It’s a little lazy if you ask me. Four strength training days and maybe one or two extra conditioning ses- sions should be the norm for most. Guys who only train three days per week usually end up getting fat and don’t seem to gain size as quickly. I experimented with having many of my clients do three-day programs for a while and the results just never compared to the four-day workouts. Now, if you truly can only get to the gym three days per week, after eliminating all the wasted TV & Facebook time from your life then that’s fine. You’ll do the best you can and will still be able to get results. Some can do more than four lifting days per week and even excel, but those are guys who really have their workouts, sleep, nutrition and recovery dialed in and are completely on point with every detail. The rest of us have the reality of jobs, relationships, kids and numerous other factors that would prevent us from training and recovering from more than four hard strength workouts per week. Intense training places a significant demand on the body and you need to allow time to recover from that if you ever want to get big and strong. As we discussed earlier, stress comes in many dif- ferent forms, and all of them cut into your recovery ability. Just because you don’t work a job that includes a ton of manual labor doesn’t mean that your job doesn’t negatively affect your recovery ability if it’s very stressful. Maybe you have a ton of stress in your personal life or are just a high- strung person in general. All of this cuts into your recovery ability and has to be taken into con- sideration. How often should I train each body part? Forget about workout programs that have you train chest on Monday, legs on Tuesday, back on Thursday and arms on Friday or any other body part split along those lines. And don’t worry about the fact that your favorite steroid using, genetic freak, professional bodybuilder trains like that or the fact that all the muscle mags tell you to. Those training splits are a waste of time for anyone with average genetics who isn’t on steroids. Training in that man- ner will not help you build the physique you’re after.
    • 32 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ If you want to build serious muscle you need to train each body-part with a higher frequency than once per week. For optimal growth stimulation you should be doubling that training fre- quency. When you’re looking to improve anything in life it’s always best to do it with a somewhat high frequency. If you were trying to improve your golf swing, for example, you would do it a few days per week, not once. That is what body part split advocates are telling you to do- train each muscle group only once per week. Therefore you only get 52 growth stimulating workouts per body-part each year. However, if you follow a more intelligently laid out program you can train each muscle group 104 times per year! That’s twice the anabolic stimulus. The way to do this is to split your work- outs up into upper body and lower body days. With four training days each week you’d hit both the upper and lower body twice. The key to effective training is to do just enough work to stimulate a hypertrophy response and then get out of the gym, start recovering and get back in as soon as possible to train that muscle again. When you do the typical ten to fifteen sets per body part you are forced to train with a lower frequency because it will take you longer to recover. The problem is that some point you will actually start to detrain and lose some of your size and strength gains over the seven-day period. If you schedule your workouts properly you can actually train a muscle with enough volume to elicit a growth response and then be fully recovered and ready to train it again within 72 hours. THE BOTTOM LINE In order to devise the optimum training plan all seven of the critical factors must be addressed. To recap, the ultimate muscle building system will consist of: 1. Big, compound exercises. 2. Do no more than 15-20 total, top-end work sets per workout. 3. An average of 5-8 reps on most exercises. 4. Always lowering the weight under control and lifting it explosively. 5. Resting 45-120 seconds between sets (or sometimes up to 180 seconds on straight sets of squats or deadlifts). 6. Workouts that last an average of 45 minutes or less. 7. Four workouts per week; two for the upper body and two for the lower body.
    • “One very useful trick which the weightlifter should adopt is a wisely moderated contempt of his weights… (but) don’t despise them, for they are very formidable adversaries, and anything resembling contempt will lead to failure.” —Arthur Saxon, 1910 Intensity
    • 34 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ here’s really no way to beat around the bush so I’m just gonna come right out and say it… Training like a pansy will get you absolutely nowhere. Train like that and you will be small and weak forever; there are no ifs, ands or buts about it. Like Arthur Saxon said, you should have contempt for the weights you are attempting to move. There should be purposeful, focused anger and aggression. However, that does not mean you should train to failure. To be clearer… you should never train to failure! This is just bodybuilding nonsense that sells magazines but doesn’t help you make progress in the least. Strong and jacked athletes that most people would kill to look like never train to failure. I’m talking about Olympic lifters, gymnasts, sprinters and Cirque Du Soleil performers. If these guys don’t I think it’s fair to say that you shouldn’t either. It’s unnecessary and counterproductive. T “A strong man never extended himself unless it was absolutely necessary. Once in a while he would cut loose. It might be against a particu- larly strong competitor, or just with the desired to see whether he could improve his record.” —Earle Liederman, Secrets of Strength, 1925
    • 35 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ What does training to failure actually mean? By definition, training to failure is literally just that; you keep doing reps until you fail to com- plete another one. For example, if you were doing an incline dumbbell press and struggled to get the fifth rep—then collapsed halfway up on the sixth rep without being able to completely lock it out—that would mean you trained to failure. You literally failed in your attempt to lift the weight and had it come back down on you. Most people get confused but this is the true meaning of training to failure. Training like this leads to CNS burnout and injuries and will slow down your gains in a hurry. You should finish each set when you know that you have at least another one or two good, solid reps left in the tank. You never want to finish a set shaking like a leaf while screaming at the top of your lungs. This is largely unnecessary and, in fact, counterproductive. You just want to work as hard as you can without causing yourself to have a nervous breakdown or go into con- vulsions. Therefore if rep number four comes up slow, is a little shaky and takes a significant effort to lock out, you should immediately stop the set there even if you were hoping to get six reps in the set. What I recommend is for you to work hard and complete as many reps as you can with picture perfect form and without compromising your safety or losing significant speed on each rep. A good rule of thumb is to make sure that the last rep of every set looks exactly like the first, only slightly slower. THE BOTTOM LINE Building muscle is hard work and you had better be prepared for it. This means that you approach every workout with a tenacious killer instinct. If you do this, you will be on the path to success and can laugh at all the little pussies in the gym as they mindlessly sleep walk through another set of leg extensions while you’re busy getting stronger than they could ever imagine. But NEVER train to failure.
    • Recovery Methods
    • 37 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ ou don’t grow during your workouts; you grow during the recovery period. Therefore you have to do all you can to help your body recover from the demands you are impos- ing upon it in your workouts. Training is only half the battle when it comes to getting big and strong. Without using proper recovery techniques, you will never reach your true potential. Below are the most important recovery methods, which should be used to maximize your rate of progress. TAKE A CONTRAST BATH AFTER TRAINING This is an old technique that originated in Eastern Bloc countries many years ago to speed up the recovery of their elite athletes. It entails submerging yourself in a tub of hot water for one or two minutes, and then immediately jumping into a tub of ice-cold water for another minute—you then repeat this process for up to 10 minutes. Of course, I don’t expect you to have two bathtubs to do this, so a more practical method would be simply switching the water temperature back and forth in your shower. Just be sure to use extreme temperatures that you really have to grit and bear your way through. This is never fun but it definitely works. TAKE NAPS Naps are a great way to speed up your recovery. During sleep, your body releases growth hor- mone and repairs the damage that has been done to your muscles during intense workouts. Taking a 20–60-minute nap once or twice a day is a great way to make faster progress. SLEEP AT LEAST 8 HOURS PER DAY Deep sleep is the best form of recovery there is and the time when the majority of muscle growth takes place. Without sufficient sleep (8-10 hrs per day), your results will be nowhere near optimal. Sleep deprivation also leads to decreased insulin sensitivity, so not only will you not grow but also you will actually get fatter because your body won’t tolerate carbohydrates as effec- tively. Some people claim they can get by on only 5-6 hours per night and they are 100% right; but they are only “getting by.” Just “getting by” is not enough. Make time for sleep or make time for illness and injury… and forget about getting big. If you have difficulty sleeping, please do not ignore this—you have to do whatever you can to find a way to improve your sleep. There are many books that deal with improving the quality of your sleep and I highly recommended that you read one. A few tips that have helped people achieve better sleeping habits are the following: Y
    • 38 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ • Go to bed and get up at the same time every day. • Unwind for an hour before bed. During this time you should be doing nothing but relaxing. Reading is ok here as long as it is not something that gets your mind over stimulated; fiction or something that is not at all related to anything you do is usually best. • Make your room as dark as possible. There was a study once that showed that even a tiny light shining directly on the back of a subject’s leg negatively affected sleep quality. • Avoid alcohol. It lessens sleep quality. • Don’t eat too much protein immediately before bed. Protein contains tyrosine which is the amino acid that sends a signal to your brain to become more alert (it’s also a major ingredient in many energy drinks). Having a huge protein meal before bed can keep you up for hours. • Don’t drink too much water before bed. This is another way to disrupt your sleep quality because you will be up visiting the bathroom when you should be sleeping and recovering. • Keep your bedroom very cool. The optimal sleeping temperature is around 68–70 degrees for most people. Keeping your room temperature much warmer than this can negatively affect the quality of your sleep. • Try theNightwave Sleep Assistant http://jasonferruggia.com/nightwave. I use this myself and swear by it for a good nights sleep. • Try to train earlier in the day. If I train past 4pm I always have trouble sleeping. Hundreds of people I have polled have reported the same. Obviously, if that’s the only time you can train so be it. But if you have a choice and a sleeping problem it would be wise to move your workout time up a few hours. STRETCH ON YOUR OFF DAYS This is a great way to increase blood flow to the muscles and helps shuttle in the nutrients nec- essary for optimal recovery. This should be done after you work up a sweat from jumping rope or even walking for 10-30 minutes. Stretch the muscle to a point where you feel it in the belly of the muscle but not the joint. This shouldn’t be anywhere as near intense as the extreme stretching you do post workout. Instead, just lightly stretch the muscles that are sore and hold the positions for 30-60 seconds each. You could do this while watching TV at night.
    • 39 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ UTILIZE ACTIVE RECOVERY TECHNIQUES Activities like swimming, biking, walking or some bodyweight calisthenics like jumping jacks and mountain climbers, performed the day after a hard workout will pump some nutrient rich blood into the muscles which will help hasten the recovery process. GET A MASSAGE ONCE PER WEEK This is a great way to relax and speed up the healing process of sore muscles. Be sure to drink lots of water in the hours following a massage to help rid the body of toxins released during the treatment. If you cannot afford a massage, you could always do self-massage with a lacrosse ball and/or foam roller. Most people are familiar with proper foam roller use these days but may not be as well versed in self-massage with the lacrosse ball. It works the same way in that you get down on the floor and lay on the ball and move around in various directions, working out the knots in your muscles. For achy shoulders try placing the ball behind your shoulder blades or in your armpit. Find a ten- der area and just lie there or move around slightly. A great way to loosen up the hips is to sit down with one glute on the ball, while crossing one foot over the opposite knee and moving around until you find the tender areas that need to be worked out. Be prepared for some serious pain, however. Trust me, though; the results will be worth it. LIMIT YOUR CONSUMPTION OF ALCOHOL & RECREATIONAL DRUGS As mentioned earlier, drinking can negatively affect your sleep quality. It can also decrease your testosterone and leaving you feeling less than 100% for a day or two after getting drunk. The honest truth is that if you want to build a rock hard, muscular physique you should limit your consumption of alcohol as much as possible. Recreational drugs are just as bad and can have the same negative effects as drinking. I understand, however, that as much as most of us want to build more muscle we also don’t want to give up our social life and do enjoy an occasional night of drinking. Having said that it should be noted that drinking one night a week won’t kill you and won’t completely eliminate any chances you have of ever getting big or strong. I have known plenty of people who drank one and sometimes even two nights a week and got incredibly big and strong. In fact, up until my mid thir- ties I had probably gotten drunk a few times per month for as long as I can remember. It’s not as bad as some people make it out to be. Besides, there are very few goals that are worth giving up your entire social life for and I would never recommend that. Just don’t do it all the time. When you do, be sure to drink a ton of water the following day. Also do some kind of activity to really get your blood flowing and flush your system.
    • 40 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ AVOID STRESS This is obviously easier said than done, but it should be noted that excessive amounts of psy- chological or emotional stress could wreak havoc on your results. Stress causes the body to release cortisol, a hormone that eats muscle tissue. Excessive amounts of cortisol can also cause an increase in body-fat levels, especially around the abdomen. Make time to relax throughout the day and use whatever aids are available to help you manage stress. PRACTICE MEDITATION In today’s fast paced, busy society the majority of people are stressed beyond anything that could be considered a healthy level. Meditation has long been known to reduce stress and relax the mind. Unfortunately, the majority of bodybuilders and other fitness obsessed individuals have largely ignored the benefits of meditation and how much of an impact it can have on your train- ing and your physique, not to mention your overall health and recovery ability. A few years back I was turned on to the Holosync Meditation CD’s http://jasonferruggia.com/meditate and the results were noticeable within just the first few days. These are the only mediation CD’s out there that actually work. I have turned several friends and clients on to them and they have all noticed great benefits that carried over to their performance in the gym and changes in their physiques. I highly recommend that you give the program a try. TAKE 4-7 DAYS COMPLETELY OFF EVERY 12-16 WEEKS After 12-16 weeks of hard training your body will demand a rest. Taking a few days off will actually allow you to get stronger and come back fresh and ready to train hard again. You simply cannot train balls to the wall for 52 weeks per year and expect to make progress. Injuries will start to accumulate and your desire to be in the gym and work hard will start to dwindle. One thing that I have noticed is that people get very nervous about taking time off because they think they are going to get small and weak. You are going to have to trust me here when I promise you it’s not going to happen.
    • Mass Building Nutrition
    • 42 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ his is a strength-training manual so we’re not going to get too in depth with nutrition here. To keep it simple take your bodyweight and multiply it by 16. That will give you a good starting point for your total calories each day. Eat one gram of protein per pound of bodyweight. On training days have two grams of carbs per pound of body- weight. On off days have one gram of carbs per pound of bodyweight. Eat most of your carbs during the four hours after training. Fill in the rest of your calories each day with healthy sources of fat like grass fed beef, organic egg yolks, wild caught salmon and coconut oil. 1 gram of protein = 4 calories 1 gram of carbs = 4 calories 1 gram of fat = 9 calories If you weigh 150 pounds and multiply that by 16 you would get 2400 calories. Eating 150 grams of protein would give you 600 calories. On a training day you would consume 300 grams of carbs, which will give you 1200 calories. That gives you 1800 total calories, which you sub- tract from 2400 to see how much fat you need. Knowing that 2400 minus 1800 equals 600 you would now simply divide 600 by 9 (the number of calories in a gram of fat) to determine how much fat you can eat. In this case it would be 66 grams. On non-training days the carbs will be lower and the fat will be higher. Eat three or four meals per day spaced 3-4 hours apart. Run that plan for the first two weeks and then assess your gains. If you are not gaining any weight add 300 calories per day, equally divided between protein, fat and carbs. If you are getting fat cut 300 calories per day. It will be a process of trial and error and will take a bit of time to dial in 100% correctly. Always do your best to eat organic food as much as possible and avoid low quality junk that will make you fat and sick. That means sugars, fried foods, trans fats, and pretty much anything that comes in a box or a bag. T
    • For protein focus on Lean, grass fed beef http://jasonferruggia.com/grasslandbeef, turkey, chicken, wild caught fish, cage free eggs and Chemical free, grass fed protein powder http://jasonferruggia.com/proteinpowder . For carbs focus on yams, potatoes, Jasmine rice, fruits and vegetables. Avoid most grains; especially wheat. Drink at least half your bodyweight in ounces of water per day and skip out on most other bev- erages other than an occasional cup of black coffee or tea. For all the nitty gritty details on eating for lean muscle growth, health and performance check out the most effec- tive body recomposition plan ever created, The Renegade Diet http://renegadedietbook.com/ . Nutrition is at least 50% of the battle when it comes to building muscle and get- ting lean, and there is simply no other way of eating that will transform your body quite as efficiently as The Renegade Diet. Click http://renegadedietbook.com/ to check it out. 43 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ “If man made it, don’t eat it.” —Jack LaLanne
    • The Workouts
    • 45 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ f I had one wish it would be that everyone would read the rest of this manual before starting the workouts. That would definitely ensure greater progress because there will be a greater understanding of the muscle building process. However, I understand the desire to get started right away. If you’re going to do that right from the get go I just need to tell you not to train to failure and never to let your form break down on any exercise. Risking an injury is never worth it. If you can’t make strength gains on a consistent basis you’re either not eating enough, not sleep- ing enough, partying too much or are too stressed out. Overtraining is not a likely option since I have designed the workouts to ensure against it. Something else is wrong, though, and you need to address and fix it immediately if you want to achieve your goals. Don’t over think or over ana- lyze things; simply follow the workouts to the letter, eat like a horse, get lots of rest and you will get bigger and stronger faster than just about everyone else in your gym. The workouts should be performed four times per week. Ideally you’d want to set up your schedule so that you only have back-to-back training days one time per week. By that I mean you should train on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday or Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. If that’s not an option, just pick whatever you can make work for you schedule and lifestyle. If you can truly only make it to the gym three days it’s not the end of the world. In that case you would do all four workouts over the course of ten days instead of seven. It would look like this: Monday- Day 1 Wednesday- Day 2 Friday- Day 3 Monday- Day 4 Wednesday- Day 1 Friday- Day 2 And so on and so on. I
    • 46 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Pre Workout Warm Up Before we get into the workouts let’s cover the pre workout warm up plan. Warming up is a very important component of a successful muscle-building workout. It is not a good idea to come in cold, right off the streets and jump straight into heavy lifting. When you warm up properly you lubricate your joints and elevate your core temperature, which will help you perform much better during your workout. Although warming up is critically important it also needn’t be a workout in itself as some people like to make it. Simply follow my recommendations below and you should be thoroughly warmed up and ready to train safely in ten minutes or less. The first part of an effective warm up consists of three to five minutes of continuous movement. This could be done by riding a stationary bike, walking on a treadmill, or jumping rope. Do this just long enough to break a sweat and stop; don’t turn it into an aerobic workout. You could also do the following circuit: 1. Jumping Jacks – 30 seconds 2. Overhead Squats (Hold your arms straight up, fully extended overhead like the top position of a military press)– 10 reps 3. Mountain Climbers (Get down into a pushup position and basically run in place by bring- ing your knees up to your chest. Be sure to keep your back flat and abs tight throughout the exercise)– 30 seconds 4. Rest 30 seconds between each exercise and repeat the entire circuit 2-3 times. Upper Body Days After you complete the general warm up you should then perform a very brief shoulder warm up. Start with 20 shoulder dislocations with a band or broomstick followed by 20 scap pushups. Follow those two exercises up with the following dumbbell circuit. Do all the exercises with a 3- 5 pound dumbbell and minimal rest between them. Perform ten reps each. 1) Lateral Raise 2) Bent Over Lateral Raise 3) Dumbbell Front Raise 4) Bent Over Y-Raise 5) External Rotation on Side 6) Shrug This can be done forever with a pair of five-pound dumbbells and there is really no need to ever increase the weight on this. You simply want to lubricate the joints and increase blood flow to the area to help prevent injuries.
    • 47 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ After you have completed the shoulder warm up you can then move directly into the first exer- cise that you are going to be doing that day. Lower Body Days After the general warm up move into the following circuit of exercises, doing ten reps each: 1) Bodyweight Prisoner Squat 2) Overhead Split Squat 3) Dynamic Hip Flexion 4) Cossack Squat 5) Cat/ Camel 6) Bird/ Dog 7) Fire Hydrant 8) Glute Bridge After your general warm up you can then move into your first exercises of the day. If it’s a squat or dead lift, you can also do some static stretching for any tight muscle groups such as the ham- strings, hip flexors, glutes, piriformis and calves if you need to. Static stretching has been condemned in recent years but the truth of the matter is that it’s com- pletely fine. Some of the biggest and best athletes of all time have stretched statically and they all made out pretty well. Don’t believe everything you read. The studies that showed that static stretching was dangerous involved holding a static stretch and then immediately testing your max right afterwards. Of course your max will be down after that! That is probably not the best idea. But doing a few static stretches for chronically tight areas and then gradually warming up to a heavy weight is a far better idea than skipping the stretches and attempting to squat 300 pounds with the flexibility of a conference table. A trick to use, which will really ensure that static stretching has no negative effect on your workout, is to only hold each stretch for ten seconds, and then immediately flex the muscle being stretched. You can repeat this as many times as necessary. If you can do it, PNF stretching is actually a better option than static stretching in most cases, it’s just a bit difficult to explain and to grasp without actually seeing and doing it. Basically what you want to do when you are using PNF stretching is to contract the muscle that is being stretched with 25% of your strength against resistance (preferably, manual resistance given by a partner) for 6-8 seconds. After 6-8 seconds, you take a deep breath, hold it for a second, and then simultane- ously exhale and increase the range of the stretch. You would repeat this three to four times or until you can’t increase the range any further.
    • 48 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Exercise Specific Warm Up Sets When you are ready to start on your first exercise there is a basic, simple progression you should follow. On the first set you are going to use either the empty bar or light dumbbells, depending on what exercise you are doing, and perform 10-20 reps. From there you’ll move to approximately fifty percent of the starting weight for another set of 5-8 reps. Then jump up to sev- enty five percent for a set of five followed by an optional set with about 90% of your starting weight for three reps. So it’s: Warm up set 1- bar or light dumbbells x 10-20 Warm up set 2- 50% of starting weight x 5-8 Warm up set 3- 75% or starting weight x 5 Warm up set 4- 90% of starting weight x 3 (optional for beginners but recommended for all intermediate and advanced lifters) For the sake of simplicity, and to save time, we usually only use 45’s, 25’s and 10’s when warm- ing up. For this reason, the percentages are not exact but they don’t need to be, just as long as they are in the ballpark. You don’t need to actually whip out a calculator and figure out what your warm up weights should be. After warming up for your first big set of each day you probably don’t have to do as many warm up sets. MGS BEGINNER WORKOUT PLAN The beginner workout is for those with less than one year of proper training experience. The Big Four exercises (bench press, squat, military press, deadlift) are each trained twice per week. This increased exposure will give you a better chance to learn and master these lifts. Go heavy on Days 1 & 2 then lighten up the weight a bit for Days 3 & 4 when you repeat the same exercise in a slightly higher rep range. Start with a weight that allows you to get four sets of five reps and stick with it until you can get four sets of seven reps, then increase the weight by five pounds and repeat. On Days 3 & 4 do the same thing but with a six-rep weight, sticking with it until you can get it for sets of eight. Follow this plan for 4-8 weeks, or until you are comfortable enough with your form to move on to the main program.
    • If you only have 2.5 pound plates to work with you may plateau sooner than you should, which is why I highly recommend getting a set of Fractional Plates http://jasonferruggia.com/fractionalplates if they’re in your budget. Be conservative with your weight increases and don’t try to rush anything. Slow and steady wins the race every time. With Fractional Plates you will be able to make 1, 2 and 3-pound jumps along with other possible combos in between. 49 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Before Starting the Workouts Please be sure to go through and read this section again thoroughly before you go to the gym and get started on the Muscle Gaining Secrets program. Having a full understanding of both the general and specific warm up, the workout structure, schedule, and progression scheme is of critical importance and will make a huge difference in your ultimate progress over the next twelve weeks.
    • Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ PRINTABLE WORKOUT SHEETS MGS BEGINNER WORKOUT PLAN 50 Day 1 Sets Reps Rest 1) Bench Press 4 5-7 90 2) Military Press 4 5-7 90 3) Incline Dumbbell Row 4 6-8 90 4) Chin Up 4 6-8 90 Day 2 Sets Reps Rest 1) Squat 5 5-7 120 2) Rack Deadlift (Just Above Knee) 4 5-7 120 3) EZ Bar Curl 3 8-10 90 4) Sled Push or Bike Sprint 8 20 sec 60 Day 3 Sets Reps Rest 1) Bench Press 3 6-8 90 2) Military Press 3 6-8 90 3) Pull Up 3 AMAP 90 4) 1 Arm Dumbbell Row 3 6-8 90 Day 4 Sets Reps Rest 1) Squat 3 6-8 120 2) Romanian Deadlift 3 6-8 120 3) Hammer Curl 3 8-10 120 4) Sled Push or Bike Sprint 8 20 sec 60
    • 51 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ MGS MAIN WORKOUT PLAN The main program follows the same type of template used by Iron Game legends like Ed Coan, Kirk Karwoski and Bill Kazmaier. One of the Big Four lifts starts each workout day, and over the course of twelve weeks the reps will decrease and the weight will increase on these exercises, fol- lowing an old school linear periodization scheme. Quite simply, that means that you’ll be starting with sets of eight and working your way down to sets of five in Phase 2, and then sets of three reps in Phase 3. On Week 1 you’ll be doing three sets of eight (or five or three, depending on the phase) reps on the Big Four. After a few warm up sets pick a weight that you’ll easily be able to use for all three sets. This is the intro week so you DO NOT want to go too heavy on the main lift or you will burn out way too soon. Remember that you have twelve weeks ahead of you so you need to be conservative and give yourself a lot of room to make progress. On Week 2 you’re going to use the same weight you did on Week 1 but add two more sets. So you’ll be doing five sets of eight. The increased volume will help build size and strength. On Week 3 you’re going to cut the sets down to just two and increase the weight. Pick a weight you can definitely do for two sets without hitting failure or having to lower it. A five or ten pound jump is usually the norm here. On Week 4 you’re simply going to work up to an eight-rep max (8RM) by warming up until you can’t go any heavier. This is the day where you really let it rip and don’t hold anything back. You should never be at failure but it should be the hardest set you do out of all four weeks. Hit your one top-end set, after doing 4-8 progressively heavier warm up sets, and then move on to your assistance exercises. Here’s a real world example of how this will look over the course of four weeks: Week 1- 200 x 8 x 3 Week 2- 200 x 8 x 5 Week 3- 210 x 8 x 2 Week 4- 220 x 8RM When you start the following phase use about 80% of what you finished the previous phase with. So if your 8RM was 200 pounds, start Week 1 of Phase 2 with 160 pounds for five reps. Do the same thing on Phase 3, taking 20% off your best 5RM and starting with that for three sets of three.
    • 52 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Big Four Modifications Although the Big Four are commonly thought of as the bench press, squat, military press and deadlift I prefer some slight modifications. They are listed below but please don’t feel like you have to use them. If you just want to use the basic versions of each that’s fine. Instead of flat bench presses I recommend 15-30° incline presses (45° is too steep). These are safer on the shoulder. An even better option would be to these with a neutral or angled grip bar. If you have any type of shoulder mobility issues squatting with a specially designed yoke or safety squat bar would be a better option to you if it were available. If not the straight bar is fine. Instead of deadlifts with a straight bar from the floor I recommend using a trap bar or setting the bar on low pins in a power rack (or on stacked rubber mats) to the lowest position you can maintain a neutral spine. Most people will round their lower backs when attempting to pull a straight bar from the floor and this can result in serious injuries sooner or later. If, however, you can deadlift from the floor while keeping a perfectly neutral spine then you have nothing to worry about. Assistance Exercises Anything that is not one of the big compound barbell lifts is typically referred to as an assis- tance exercise. Most of the big assistance exercises will be done for sets of 6-8 reps. Some will be done for higher reps simply because those muscle groups respond better to more volume or because going too heavy on certain exercises is too risky. Take the same approach to these exercises as you do to the Big Four on Week 1 of each phase, meaning that you want to stay far from failure and don’t train too hard. It’s an intro week and needs to be treated as such. Going all out on Week 1 always leads to worse results down the road. Patience is key. On the upper body days higher rep upper back work is included toward the end of each work- out. This is to ensure shoulder health and will also help add some size to those often neglected muscle groups back there. The quad dominant work that puts more stress on the knees is restricted to one of the lower body days while hip dominant work is restricted to the other day. This is purposely done to make it possible for you to run hill sprints or push/drag a sled one or two days per week without your knees taking a beating and being unable to recover.
    • 53 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ The exception is the back extensions on Day 2. These are included to keep the lower back healthy. A strong lower back is a must for athletes and should be the goal of every trainee, regard- less of whether they play a sport or not. Your lower back comes into play every time you pick something up and strong spinal erectors help prevent injuries and back pain. Not to mention that they look very impressive on the beach. The worlds leading spine expert, Dr. Stuart McGill, has said that endurance of the lower back muscles is more important than strength when it comes to safety and performance. So while you still want to deadlift heavy you’d also want to include some higher rep back extensions or swings in your training as well to prevent injuries and maximize your performance. Neck work is included on Days 2 & 4 for the simple reason that I believe everyone should train their neck. Even during the dead of winter, when you are covered up with hats, jackets and gloves, there is still one body-part that will be exposed and will let people know if you are serious about training or not. A big neck screams power and authority and intimidates anyone in your path. There is nothing worse than seeing primped up bodybuilders with a decent amount of mass and a pencil neck. To avoid that dreaded scenario you need to start training your neck immediately. Just be sure not to use excessive ranges of motion on neck exercises and do them slowly and cau- tiously. Biceps are trained on the lower body days since they recover faster from just about any other muscle group. When programmed like this the biceps receive indirect stimulation on the upper body days and direct stimulation on the lower body days. This works out very nicely for packing size on the guns.
    • 54 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ 1) Low Incline Bench Press 3 8 120 2a) Dumbbell Military Press 3 6-8 60 2b) Inverted Row 3 6-8 60 3a) Rope/Band Face Pull* 2 8-10 60 3b) Diamond Pushup 1 AMAP 60 Day 2 Sets Reps Rest 1) Squat 3 8 120 2) Dumbbell Split Squat 1 12-15 120 3) Back Extension 1 20-25 90 4) EZ Bar Curl 3 8-10 90 5) Farmers Walk 3 30 sec 90 Day 3 Sets Reps Rest 1) Military Press 3 8 120 2a) Neutral Grip Chin Up 3 6-8 60 2b) Suspended Pushup 3 6-8 60 3a) Pronated Band Pull Apart 2 8-10 60 3b) Triceps Dip 1 AMAP 60 Day 4 Sets Reps Rest 1) Deadlift 3 8 120 2) Romanian Deadlift 2 6-8 120 3a) Incline Hammer Curl 3 8-10 60 3b) Neck Extension 3 15-20 60 4) Sled Push or Drag* 3 20 sec 90 *Can run incline sprints here or push car PRINTABLE WORKOUT SHEETS Day 1 Sets Reps Rest Phase 1 _ Week 1
    • Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ 1) Low Incline Bench Press 5 8 120 2a) Dumbbell Military Press 3 6-8 60 2b) Inverted Row 3 6-8 60 3a) Rope/Band Face Pull* 2 10-12 60 3b) Diamond Pushup 1 AMAP 60 Day 2 Sets Reps Rest 1) Squat 5 8 120 2) Dumbbell Split Squat 1 12-15 120 3) Back Extension 2 20-25 120 4) EZ Bar Curl 3 8-10 90 5) Farmers Walk 3 30 sec 90 Day 3 Sets Reps Rest 1) Military Press 5 8 120 2a) Neutral Grip Chin Up 3 6-8 60 2b) Suspended Pushup 3 6-8 60 3a) Pronated Band Pull Apart 2 10-12 60 3b) Triceps Dip 1 AMAP 60 Day 4 Sets Reps Rest 1) Deadlift 5 8 120 2) Romanian Deadlift 2 6-8 120 3a) Incline Hammer Curl 3 8-10 60 3b) Neck Extension 3 15-20 60 4) Sled Push or Drag* 3 20 sec 90 *Can run incline sprints here or push car PRINTABLE WORKOUT SHEETS Day 1 Sets Reps Rest Phase 1 _ Week 2 55
    • Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ 1) Low Incline Bench Press 2 8 120 2a) Dumbbell Military Press 4 6-8 60 2b) Inverted Row 4 6-8 60 3a) Rope/Band Face Pull* 2 10-12 60 3b) Diamond Pushup 1 AMAP 60 Day 2 Sets Reps Rest 1) Squat 2 8 120 2) Dumbbell Split Squat 2 12-15 120 3) Back Extension 2 20-25 120 4) EZ Bar Curl 3 8-10 90 5) Farmers Walk 4 30 sec 60 Day 3 Sets Reps Rest 1) Military Press 2 8 120 2a) Neutral Grip Chin Up 4 6-8 60 2b) Suspended Pushup 4 6-8 60 3a) Pronated Band Pull Apart 2 10-12 60 3b) Triceps Dip 1 AMAP 60 Day 4 Sets Reps Rest 1) Deadlift 2 8 120 2) Romanian Deadlift 3 6-8 120 3a) Incline Hammer Curl 3 8-10 60 3b) Neck Extension 3 15-20 60 4) Sled Push or Drag* 4 20 sec 90 *Can run incline sprints here or push car PRINTABLE WORKOUT SHEETS Day 1 Sets Reps Rest Phase 1 _ Week 3 56
    • Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ 1) Low Incline Bench Press 1 8RM 60-120 2a) Dumbbell Military Press 4 6-8 60 2b) Inverted Row 4 6-8 60 3a) Rope/Band Face Pull* 3 10-12 60 3b) Diamond Pushup 2 AMAP 60 Day 2 Sets Reps Rest 1) Squat 1 8RM 60-120 2) Dumbbell Split Squat 3 15-20 120 3) Back Extension 3 20-25 120 4) EZ Bar Curl 3 8-10 90 5) Farmers Walk 5 30 sec 90 Day 3 Sets Reps Rest 1) Military Press 1 8RM 60-120 2a) Neutral Grip Chin Up 4 6-10 60 2b) Suspended Pushup 4 6-8 60 3a) Pronated Band Pull Apart 3 10-12 60 3b) Triceps Dip 2 AMAP 60 Day 4 Sets Reps Rest 1) Deadlift 1 8RM 60-120 2) Romanian Deadlift 4 6-8 120 3a) Incline Hammer Curl 3 8-10 60 3b) Neck Extension 3 15-20 60 4) Sled Push or Drag* 5 20 sec 90 *Can run incline sprints here or push car PRINTABLE WORKOUT SHEETS Day 1 Sets Reps Rest Phase 1 _ Week 4 57
    • 58 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Phase 1 Exercise Descriptions (Listed in the order in which they appear in the program with alternate variations given as well) Day 1 Low Incline Bench Press • Use an incline bench set at 15-30° • Squeeze shoulder blades together • Grip bar tightly with a shoulder width grip • Keep elbows at 45° angle to torso • Lower bar to your nipple line or just above • Explosively push bar back up to lockout while simultaneously driving feet into ground Bench Press • Same as incline press but on a flat bench Standing Dumbbell Press • Hold dumbbells with palms facing forward at shoulder height • Press directly overhead to lockout • Brace abs and squeeze glutes throughout Inverted Row • Set a bar at around waist height in a power rack or Smith machine • Get under it and grab the bar with a shoulder width grip • Put your feet up on a bench or box so that your body is now parallel to the ground • Keep body perfectly straight • Squeeze glutes & brace abs • Pull chest to bar and squeeze shoulder blades together • Hold for one second at top • Can also be done on Jungle Gym XT or Rings Rope Face Pull • Attach a rope to a high cable station • Grab it with palms facing down • Pull rope to your face • Try to touch elbows together behind your back • Shoulder blades should be squeezed fully • Hold for two seconds in fully contracted position
    • 59 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Band Face Pull • If you don’t have a cable station this can be done by looping a band around a chin up bar or power rack upright. Diamond Pushup • Get in pushup position with body perfectly straight • Brace abs and squeeze glutes • Form diamond position with hands • Descend under control in three seconds • Pause for two seconds at bottom • Explode up, being sure to focus on working the triceps • If diamond grip is too stressful on wrists move hands out a bit Day 2 Squat • Take an evenly spaced, crushing grip on bar, 6-12 inches outside of shoulder width • Squeeze shoulder blades together • Rest bar on traps, not on neck • Take slightly wider than shoulder width stance and point toes out 15-30° • Keeping chest held high inhale deeply, fill your abdomen with air and hold it • Start descent by breaking at the hips and sitting back and down • Go down until top of thighs are parallel with ground (or slightly above) • Don’t allow lower back to round • Explode back up, slowly letting air out about 2/3 of the way up Dumbbell Split Squat • Hold a dumbbell in each hand • Get into a lunge position • Lower yourself by squatting down • Push hips forward slightly so that hamstrings touch calves in bottom position • Pause for one second at bottom • Be sure to keep a perfectly upright posture throughout the set • Concentrate on feeling stretch in hip flexors • Push back up using entire foot; not just the ball of your foot
    • 60 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Back Extension • Can be done on either 45-degree back extension bench or basic back extension bench • Position yourself on the apparatus so that your hips are completely off the end of the pad • Lower your body by breaking at hips and pushing butt back • Don’t allow lower back to round • Initiate positive portion of reps by squeezing glutes • Pause for one second at top • If necessary increase difficulty by holding weight on chest or wrapping a band around neck EZ Bar Curl • Grab bar with an underhand, shoulder width grip • Keep chest out and shoulders back • Start with arms 99% straight • Curl weight up until forearms touch biceps • Don’t allow elbows to drift forward excessively Farmers Walk • Grab a pair of heavy dumbbells or kettlebells and stand perfectly upright • Walk around the gym, down the block or whatever for 30 seconds • If that’s not possible just hold heavy dumbbells for 30 seconds Day 3 Standing Military Press • Set bar in a rack at upper chest height • Take shoulder width (or slightly wider) crushing vice grip on bar • Stand perfectly upright, brace abs and squeeze glutes • Press in slight arc to get around your head • Move head back out of way then move it back forward to lock out the weight • Bar should finish directly overhead • Hold it for a second before lowering under control. • Do not lean backward excessively
    • 61 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Neutral Grip Chin Up • Hang from chin up bar handles with palms facing each other • Use a thumbless grip (thumb on the same side of the bar as fingers) to reduce the involvement of forearms and biceps • Elbows should be 99% straight • Don’t let shoulders come out of sockets and up by ears • Keep them tightly “sucked in” • Initiate pull by using lats; not biceps • Pull up until chest hits bar • Keep chest up and back arched throughout • Squeeze shoulder blades together at top Suspended Pushup • Use Jungle Gym XT or Rings • Attach them on chin up bar or top of power rack • To increase difficulty move them further apart or added weighted vest or chains • Keep body perfectly straight; no A-framing or sagging hips • Brace abs and squeeze glutes • Lower under control, allowing elbows to drift out a bit • Press/ squeeze your way back up on each rep Pronated Band Pull Apart • Grab a strength training band at upper chest height with palms down • Keep elbows 99% straight • Pull band apart as far as possible • Squeeze shoulder blades all the way together on each rep • Hold contracted position for two seconds Triceps Dip • Use parallel bars or rings • Keep torso upright • Lower until triceps are parallel with ground then explode up • Concentrate on making the triceps do the work
    • 62 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Day 4 Deadlift • Set bar about an inch away from shins • Take shoulder width grip and slightly narrower stance • Unless you’re a competitive powerlifter use a double overhand grip and lifting straps when needed • Keep head in line with spine and back flat (no rounding of lower back) • Body should be at approximately a 45° angle to floor in start position • Grip bar tightly, trying to crush it • Maximize full body tension • Take huge breath and hold it in abdomen • Don’t rip bar off the floor but rather grind it up slowly • Don’t allow hips to rise before shoulders • Once bar clears your knees explosively drive hips through while squeezing glutes and pulling shoulders back • Return to start position by pushing hips back then lowering the bar • Bar should remain in contact with quads the entire time • Don’t star squatting back down until bar clears knees • Let plates touch ground and repeat • A slow negative on the deadlift is dangerous and should be avoided Romanian Deadlift • Set bar on hooks at knee height • Grab it and stand perfectly upright • Bend knees slightly • Descend in same manner as conventional deadlift • But exaggerate the hips back action • Concentrate on feeling the hamstrings stretch • Lower the bar as far as you can without squatting down • This is usually somewhere right around knee height for most • Knees should remain slightly bent throughout
    • 63 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Incline Hammer Curl • Set incline bench to 60-75° • Grab dumbbells with neutral (palms facing grip) • Start with elbows 99% straight • Curl up until forearm touches biceps Neck Extension • Lay face down on a bench with head of end • Have partner provide resistance by placing a towel over your head • Or use the neck harness • Move head back and forth like you’re looking over a really tall, really hot model • Don’t go down too low • Don’t come up too high by jamming your head all the way back into your traps Heavy Sled Push or Drag • Load a few plates on a sled and push it or drag it for 20 seconds
    • Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ 1) Bench Press 3 5 120 2a) Neutral Grip Dumbbell Military Press 3 6-8 60 2b) Pull Up 3 6-8 60 3a) Hammer Grip Face Pull* 2 10-12 60 3b) Feet Elevated Diamond Pushup 1 AMAP 60 * Use band or rope cable attachment Day 2 Sets Reps Rest 1) Squat 3 5 120 2) Rear Foot Elevated Split Squat 1 10-12 120 3) Back Extension 1 15-20 120 4) Hammer Curl 3 8-10 90 5) Farmers Walk 3 30 sec 90 Day 3 Sets Reps Rest 1) Military Press 3 5 120 2a) Chest Supported Row 3 6-8 60 2b) 45 Degree Incline Dumbbell Press 3 6-8 60 3a) Supinated Band Pull Apart 2 10-12 60 3b) Dumbbell Floor Press 1 8-10 60 Day 4 Sets Reps Rest 1) Deadlift 3 5 120 2) Clean Grip Shrug Pull 2 6-8 120 3a) Incline Curl 3 8-10 60 3b) Neck Extension 3 20 60 4) Sled Push or Drag 3 20 sec 90 *Can run incline sprints here or push car PRINTABLE WORKOUT SHEETS Day 1 Sets Reps Rest Phase 2 _ Week 1 64
    • Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ 1) Bench Press 5 5 120 2a) Neutral Grip Dumbbell Military Press 3 6-8 60 2b) Pull Up 3 6-8 60 3a) Hammer Grip Face Pull* 2 10-12 60 3b) Feet Elevated Diamond Pushup 1 AMAP 60 * Use band or rope cable attachment Day 2 Sets Reps Rest 1) Squat 5 5 120 2) Rear Foot Elevated Split Squat 1 12-15 120 3) Back Extension 1 15-20 90 4) Hammer Curl 3 8-10 90 5) Farmers Walk 4 30 sec 60 Day 3 Sets Reps Rest 1) Military Press 5 5 90 2a) Chest Supported Row 3 6-8 60 2b) 45 Degree Incline Dumbbell Press 3 6-8 60 3a) Supinated Band Pull Apart 2 10-12 60 3b) Dumbbell Floor Press 1 8-10 60 Day 4 Sets Reps Rest 1) Deadlift 5 5 120 2) Clean Grip Shrug Pull 2 6-8 120 3a) Incline Curl 3 8-10 60 3b) Neck Extension 3 20 60 4) Sled Push or Drag 4 20 sec 90 *Can run incline sprints here or push car PRINTABLE WORKOUT SHEETS Day 1 Sets Reps Rest Phase 2 _ Week 2 65
    • Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ 1) Bench Press 2 5 120 2a) Neutral Grip Dumbbell Military Press 4 6-8 60 2b) Pull Up 4 6-8 60 3a) Face Pull* 2 10-12 60 3b) Feet Elevated Diamond Pushup 1 AMAP 60 * Use band or rope cable attachment Day 2 Sets Reps Rest 1) Squat 2 5 120 2) Rear Foot Elevated Split Squat 3 12-15 120 3) Back Extension 2 15-20 120 4) Hammer Curl 3 8-10 90 5) Farmers Walk 4 30 sec 90 Day 3 Sets Reps Rest 1) Military Press 2 5 90 2a) Chest Supported Row 4 6-8 60 2b) 45 Degree Incline Press 4 6-8 60 3a) Supinated Band Pull Apart 2 10-12 60 3b) Dumbbell Floor Press 1 8-10 60 Day 4 Sets Reps Rest 1) Deadlift 2 5 120 2) Clean Grip Shrug Pull 4 6-8 120 3a) Incline Curl 3 8-10 60 3b) Neck Extension 3 20 60 4) Sled Push or Drag 5 20 sec 90 *Can run incline sprints here or push car PRINTABLE WORKOUT SHEETS Day 1 Sets Reps Rest Phase 2 _ Week 3 66
    • 67 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ 1) Bench Press 1 5RM 60-120 2a) Neutral Grip Dumbbell Military Press 4 6-8 60 2b) Pull Up 4 6-8 60 3a) Face Pull* 3 10-12 60 3b) Feet Elevated Diamond Pushup 2 AMAP 60 * Use band or rope cable attachment Day 2 Sets Reps Rest 1) Squat 1 5RM 60-120 2) Rear Foot Elevated Split Squat 3 12-15 120 3) Back Extension 2 15-20 120 4) Hammer Curl 3 8-10 90 5) Farmers Walk 5 30 sec 90 Day 3 Sets Reps Rest 1) Military Press 1 5RM 60-120 2a) Chest Supported Row 4 6-8 60 2b) 45 Degree Incline Press 4 6-8 60 3a) Supinated Band Pull Apart 3 10-12 60 3b) Dumbbell Floor Press 2 8-10 60 Day 4 Sets Reps Rest 1) Deadlift 1 5RM 60-120 2) Clean Grip Shrug Pull 4 6-8 120 3a) Incline Curl 3 8-10 60 3b) Neck Extension 3 20 60 4) Sled Push or Drag 5 20 sec 90 *Can run incline sprints here or push car PRINTABLE WORKOUT SHEETS Day 1 Sets Reps Rest Phase 2 _ Week 4
    • 68 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Phase 2 Exercise Descriptions Day 1 Bench Press • See Phase 1 Neutral Grip Dumbbell Military Press • Same as Phase 1 except with palms facing in towards each other Pull Up • Same as neutral grip chin up except with palms facing away from body Hammer Grip Face Pull • Same as Phase 1 except grabbing ropes with a hammer grip so palms face each other Feet Elevated Diamond Pushup • Same as Phase 1 except with feet on 12-14” box Day 2 Squat • Same as Phase 1 Rear Foot Elevated Split Squat • Same as Phase 1 except with rear foot on 12-16” box Back Extension • Same as Phase 1 • If you have access to both a flat and 45° back extension feel free to use a different one this phase than last Hammer Curl • Same as Phase 1 except standing instead of incline Farmers Walk • Same as Phase 1
    • 69 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Day 3 Military Press • Same as Phase 1 Chest Supported Row • Grab a pair of dumbbells • Lay face down on 30-60° incline bench • Row dumbbells up as far as possible, squeezing shoulder blades together at top • Hold for one second in contracted position 45° Incline Dumbbell Press • Lay face down on incline bench with dumbbells in hand and crushing vice grip • Squeeze shoulder blades together & keep them there throughout set • Drive feet into ground • Press straight up to lockout • Lower under control Supinated Band Pull Apart • Same as Phase 1 except with a palms up grip Dumbbell Floor Press • Lay down on floor with dumbbells in each hand • Squeeze shoulder blades together • Lower until triceps lightly touch ground; not elbows • Pause for one second then push back up to lockout
    • 70 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Day 4 Deadlift • Same as Phase 1 Clean Grip Shrug Pull • Perform exactly like Romanian deadlift but add explosive shrug with calf raise at top of each rep • Only lower until bar is just above knee height Incline Curl • Lay back on 60-75° incline bench with dumbbells in hand • Extend elbows 99% of the way • Curl the weights up until forearms touch biceps Neck Extension • Same as Phase 1 Sled Push or Drag • Same as Phase 1
    • Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ 1) Bench Press ` 3 3 90 2a) 1 Arm Dumbbell Clean and Press 3 6-8 60 2b) Chin Up 3 6-8 60 3a) Suspended Face Pull* 2 10-12 60 3b) Band Resisted Diamond Pushup 1 15-20 60 *Use Jungle Gym XT or Rings Day 2 Sets Reps Rest 1) Squat 3 3 120 2) Squat 1 10 120 3) Back Extension 2 12-15 120 4) Cross Body Hammer Curl 3 8-10 90 5) Farmers Walk 3 20 90 Day 3 Sets Reps Rest 1) Military Press 3 3 90 2a) 1 Arm Dumbbell Row 3 6-8 60 2b) Flat Dumbbell Press 3 6-8 60 3a) Pronated Band Pull Apart 2 10-12 60 3b) Triceps Dip 1 10-12 60 Day 4 Sets Reps Rest 1) Deadlift 3 3 120 2) Snatch Grip Shrug Pull 2 6-8 60 3a) Dumbbell Curl 3 8-10 60 3b) Neck Extension 3 15-20 60 4) Sled Push or Drag 3 20 sec 90 *Can run incline sprints here or push car PRINTABLE WORKOUT SHEETS Day 1 Sets Reps Rest Phase 3 _ Week 1 71
    • Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ 1) Bench Press 5 3 90 2a) 1 Arm Dumbbell Clean and Press 3 6-8 60 2b) Chin Up 3 6-8 60 3a) Suspended Face Pull* 2 10-12 60 3b) Band Resisted Diamond Pushup 1 15-20 60 *Use Jungle Gym XT or Rings Day 2 Sets Reps Rest 1) Squat 5 3 120 2) Squat 1 10 120 3) Back Extension 2 12-15 120 4) Cross Body Hammer Curl 3 8-10 90 5) Farmers Walk 3 20 90 Day 3 Sets Reps Rest 1) Military Press 5 3 90 2a) 1 Arm Dumbbell Row 3 6-8 60 2b) Flat Dumbbell Press 3 6-8 60 3a) Pronated Band Pull Apart 2 10-12 60 3b) Triceps Dip 1 10-12 60 Day 4 Sets Reps Rest 1) Deadlift 5 3 120 2) Snatch Grip Shrug Pull 3 6-8 60 3a) Dumbbell Curl 3 8-10 60 3b) Neck Extension 3 15-20 60 4) Sled Push or Drag 3 20 sec 90 *Can run incline sprints here or push car PRINTABLE WORKOUT SHEETS Day 1 Sets Reps Rest Phase 3 _ Week 2 72
    • Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ 1) Bench Press 2 3 90 2a) 1 Arm Dumbbell Clean and Press 4 6-8 60 2b) Chin Up 4 6-8 60 3a) Suspended Face Pull* 2 10-12 60 3b) Band Resisted Diamond Pushup 1 15-20 60 *Use Jungle Gym XT or Rings Day 2 Sets Reps Rest 1) Squat 2 3 120 2) Squat 2 10 120 3) Back Extension 3 12-15 120 4) Cross Body Hammer Curl 3 8-10 90 5) Farmers Walk 4 30 sec 60 Day 3 Sets Reps Rest 1) Military Press 2 3 90 2a) 1 Arm Dumbbell Row 4 6-8 60 2b) Flat Dumbbell Press 4 6-8 60 3a) Pronated Band Pull Apart 2 10-12 60 3b) Triceps Dip 1 10-12 60 Day 4 Sets Reps Rest 1) Deadlift 2 3 120 2) Snatch Grip Shrug Pull 4 6-8 60 3a) Dumbbell Curl 3 8-10 60 3b) Neck Extension 3 15-20 60 4) Sled Push or Drag 5 20 sec 90 *Can run incline sprints here or push car PRINTABLE WORKOUT SHEETS Day 1 Sets Reps Rest Phase 3 _ Week 3
    • Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ 1) Bench Press 1 3RM 60-120 2a) 1 Arm Dumbbell Clean and Press 4 6-8 60 2b) Chin Up 4 6-8 60 3a) Suspended Face Pull* 3 10-12 60 3b) Band Resisted Diamond Pushup 2 15-20 60 *Use Jungle Gym XT or Rings Day 2 Sets Reps Rest 1) Squat 1 3RM 60-120 2) Squat 2 10 120 3) Back Extension 3 12-15 120 4) Cross Body Hammer Curl 3 8-10 90 5) Farmers Walk 5 30 sec 90 Day 3 Sets Reps Rest 1) Military Press 1 3RM 60-120 2a) 1 Arm Dumbbell Row 4 6-8 60 2b) Flat Dumbbell Press 4 6-8 60 3a) Pronated Band Pull Apart 3 10-12 60 3b) Triceps Dip 2 10-12 60 Day 4 Sets Reps Rest 1) Deadlift 1 3RM 60-120 2) Snatch Grip Shrug Pull 4 6-8 60 3a) Dumbbell Curl 3 8-10 60 3b) Neck Extension 3 15-20 60 4) Sled Push or Drag 6 20 sec 90 *Can run incline sprints here or push car PRINTABLE WORKOUT SHEETS Day 1 Sets Reps Rest Phase 3 _ Week 4 74
    • 75 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Phase 3 Exercise Descriptions Day 1 Bench Press • Same as Phase 1 & 2 1 Arm Dumbbell Clean and Press • Hold a dumbbell in one hand with other hand out to side • Start with weight directly in front of you • Use slightly wider than shoulder width stance to straddle the dumbbell • Bend over by pushing hips back until dumbbell is at knee height • Explosively pop hips forward while pulling dumbbell up to shoulder height • Flip and catch the bell in the bottom position of a military press • Now press it straight up to lockout • Lower and return to start position Neutral Grip Chin Up • Same as Phase 1 • Can also do mixed grip chin up, angled grip chin up or rings instead Suspended Face Pull • Use Jungle Gym XT or Rings • Done exactly like inverted row except that elbows are straight out to side • Pull handles directly toward face • Squeeze shoulder blades together and hold for two seconds at top • Try to touch elbows together behind back Band Resisted Diamond Pushup • Same as Phase 1 & 2 except you’ll be wrapping band behind back to increase resistance
    • 76 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Day 2 Squat • Same as Phase 1 & 2 Back Extension • Same as Phase 1 & 2 • Can use different bench Cross Body Hammer Curl • Stand upright with dumbbells at side • Curl weight across your body, one arm at a time with hammer grip • Alternate arms on each rep, doing an equal number per side • Finish position should have your hand over your heart Farmers Walk • Same as Phase 1 & 2 Day 3 Military Press • Same as Phase 1 & 2 1 Arm Dumbbell Row • With a dumbbell in one hand, place opposite hand on a bench or stationary object for support • Upper body should be slightly above parallel with ground • Split legs so that if you’re rowing with left hand left leg is forward and right leg is back • Arch back and stretch lats fully in start position • Initiate movement by pulling with lats and row the weight up until bottom of dumbbell is next to your hip
    • 77 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Flat Dumbbell Press • Grab two dumbbells and lie down on a flat bench • If you have trouble getting heavy dumbbells in position be sure to pick them up and sit them on your quads • When you’re ready to begin set, kick legs up and rock dumbbells back into position • Keep shoulder blades squeezed all the way together throughout set • Elbows should be tucked at 45° to sides with palms facing in • Press weights up in straight line while squeezing them as tightly as possible Pronated Band Pull Apart @ Navel • Same as Phase 1 but instead holding band at navel height • This is noticeably harder than when holding it higher so a lighter band may be needed Triceps Dip • Same as Phase 1 Day 4 Deadlift • Same as Phase 1 & 2 Snatch Grip Shrug Pull • Same as the clean grip shrug pull except with a wide grip Dumbbell Curl • Stand upright with a dumbbell in each hand • Extend elbows to 99% of lockout • Curl weights up until forearms touch biceps Neck Extension • Same as Phase 1 & 2 Sled Push or Drag • Same as Phase 1 & 2
    • Questions & Answers
    • 79 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ What does it mean when you say 6-8 reps or 8-10 reps? Start each workout with the lower end of the rep range. So if the rep range is 6-8 you would pick a weight you can do for six reps for all sets on week one. On week two stick with the same weight and try to get more reps with it. Once you can get eight reps with that weight for every set it is time to increase the weight by five pounds. What does it mean when the exercises have the same number but a different letter next to them? When exercises have the same number but a different letter, it means that you are supposed to alternate those two exercises back and forth. For example if 1a) is a bench press and 1b) is a 1 arm dumbbell row you would do one set of bench presses, rest a minute and then do a set of 1 arm dumbbell rows. After the rows you would again rest one minute before going back to do your sec- ond set of bench presses. If an exercise just has a number with no letter next to it that simply means that you do straight sets of the exercise with the prescribed rest period between sets. I need to lose 20 pounds of fat and gain 20 pounds of muscle. Should I do one before the other or can I do both at the same time? Yes, it is possible to lose body-fat and build muscle at the same time. However, you will really be compromising both goals to some extent. You are better off picking one goal and focusing on that until you achieve it. In your case you should get leaner first. The body is much more anabolic when you are leaner. Not only that, but your insulin sensitivity is higher when you are leaner. What that means is that you can eat more calories, and especially carbohydrates, without fear of them turning to fat. When you are between 10-12% body-fat a greater percentage of excess calories will be used to build muscle. When you are over 12% body-fat a greater percentage of excess calories will be stored as fat. So overeating for a lean person can result in muscle gain while overeating for a fat person will result in fat gain. For this reason you should always be under 12% body-fat when you go on a true mass building phase.
    • 80 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ How important is it for me to keep a training journal? Keeping a training journal is one of the most important things you can do. Don’t forget this. Without a journal, your training will be completely haphazard and you will never know if you are making progress. It is imperative that you keep detailed records of every workout. This gives you a goal to beat in each succeeding week or month, and allows you to look back and make adjust- ments when things are not going as well as you had planned. If you don’t keep a training journal, everything you do is just guesswork and your progress will be much slower than it could be. How should I track my muscle building progress? There are five tools you should be using to track your progress and they are: • Your training journal • The scale • Body-fat calipers • Measuring tape • The mirror The first way to track your progress is through your training journal. If you are getting stronger you will get bigger. The second way of measuring your progress is by weighing yourself. You should do this once every two weeks on the same day at the same time. The next way to track your progress is to measure your body-fat. This can be tricky and I recommend that you have someone who knows exactly how to do this help you with it. Next on the list is a measuring tape. You should take flexed measurements of your chest, upper arm, waist, thigh and calf every two to three weeks. If they are going up but so is your body-fat, this is not good. If your measurements are increas- ing while your body-fat remains the same or decreases, this is very good news and means you are gaining muscle. By the same token, if you are gaining weight on the scale while your body-fat remains the same or decreases, you are gaining muscle. Finally, if you are not gaining weight on the scale but your measurements are increasing and/or your body-fat is decreasing that means you are gaining muscle as well. The last way you should measure your progress is by looking at the mirror. That is the simplest and most effective ways of measuring your progress. That is all you need to track your progress.
    • 81 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ How should I breathe when performing exercises? Breathing properly can make a huge difference in your training and should never be an after- thought. A good general rule is to always exhale on the lifting or concentric portion of the exer- cise and inhale right before the negative or lowering portion of the exercise. After taking a deep breath, hold it in your abdomen and brace your abs like you were about to take a punch. Slowly let your air out when you reach the top of finished position of each rep and then take another breath. Specific exercises require special breathing techniques that are covered in further detail in the exercise sections. Should I train any differently during times of high stress? Yes, you should. Stress has a negative impact on your recovery ability and will have a detri- mental effect on your training. During times of excessively high stress, your workouts should be shorter and you should not train as often. Also, your rest periods should be longer than normal. What is the best time of the day to train? Studies by Y.V. Shcerbin and P.M. Mironenko (1980) show that there are fluctuations in a weightlifter’s work capacity during the 24-hour daily cycle. According to Leputin and Oleshko, “Strength measurements over a 24-hour period (standing and grip dynamometer, ability to differ- entiate muscular force and explosive strength of the lower extremities) also indicate that there are two periods during the day when there are rises in strength—from 11 to 14:00 hours and from 18 to 21:00 hours. Muscular power increases by 10-30% at these times.” (Leputin & Oleshko, 1982) Others have stated that the optimal times to train are either three or 11 hours after waking. The best time to train is different for everyone, but I usually recommend that people train later in the day. The reasoning for this is that your blood sugar levels are more stable, your body tem- perature is up, and you have more food in your system. Also, training first thing in the morning can be dangerous, as spinal fluid settles in the discs overnight. According to renowned back expert, Dr. Stuart McGill, you should be awake for at least a few hours before you hit the weights. Can I train when I’m sick? This depends on how sick you are. The usual rule of thumb is that if it’s above the neck, mean- ing just a head cold, you are fine to train. If it’s below the neck and in your chest and you feel weak and tired, then you probably shouldn’t train.
    • 82 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Should I train if I am still sore from a previous workout? It depends on the level of soreness. You can definitely train through some light to moderate soreness. Deep, painful soreness, however, is a different story. If you are extremely sore and even basic movements hurt, you should definitely not be training. However, you should never be get- ting that sore. So scale back the intensity a bit and make sure you are doing all that is necessary to recover properly. Is soreness an indicator of a good workout? No, soreness is not an indicator of a good workout. Getting sore only means that you did some- thing that you weren’t used to doing. Usually, you get sore during the first week or two of a new training program because of the new stimulus. During the following weeks, the soreness subsides. I heard overhead pressing is dangerous. Is that true? When overhead presses were the main upper body lift, long before people start to bench press regularly, no one had ever heard of rotator cuff problems. That is because the overhead press strengthens your shoulders and your rotator cuff muscles better than any other exercise there is. Too much bench pressing and not enough overhead pressing is a common problem that plagues countless lifters and always leads to shoulder problems. I always lean back too much when pressing overhead. What should I do to fix that? First of all, try lightening the weight. That is usually the first problem. If that doesn’t work, try bracing your abs like you are about to take a punch and squeeze your butt as hard as you can throughout the set. Also, don’t overly arch your back and allow your butt to stick out too much. Instead, you should keep your butt tucked under while pressing overhead. Should I stagger my feet when overhead pressing? No, even though you see a lot of guys doing this I do not recommend it. This will place an uneven, dangerous stress on your spine. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and your knees slightly bent at all times.
    • 83 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Are there any other tips or tricks you can share to make my overhead pressing more effective? On the lowering portion of every rep you should try to actively “pull” the bar or dumbbells back down to your shoulders. When you do this you will engage the lats which will create a shelf for you to rebound off of at the bottom position and will help protect the shoulder. Be sure to try and keep the lats flared throughout the set. What if I can’t do any chin-ups at all? If you can’t do any chin-ups, you can have a partner assist you by holding your feet. You can also loop a strength-training band over the bar and put your feet in the band to assist you. The lat- ter is the recommended option. In your opinion what is the single most important muscle group to train? A massive upper back, big traps and a thick neck give you “the power look.” They are the most intimidating muscles to have when you really think about it. I mean, when you see a guy with a bull neck, and mountainous traps out at a bar he instantly becomes the last guy in the joint that you would want to mess with, right? You assume that he either is or was a football player or wrestler and may even compete in some form of mixed martial arts right now. You’re not sure but you don’t exactly want to find out. Why aren’t bent over rows included in the program? I’ve rarely found too many people that can do them properly. With improper form, this exercise can be a back breaker, which is why I don’t think they are worth the risk for most beginners and intermediates. Another problem with bent over rows is that the lower back already takes a pound- ing on your squat and deadlift days so hitting it again with heavy bent over rows isn’t always the best option. The lower back recovers more slowly than any other muscle group, so working it too often is a bad idea. Not only that, but being sore from heavy rows will take away from the amount of weight you can do on your squats and deadlifts.
    • 84 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ I heard deadlifts are dangerous. Is that true? Absolutely not. Bending down to pick something up is one of the most basic movements in every day human life. It would only make sense to strengthen this movement pattern as much as possible if you want to make your life easier and prevent injury. Improper form on any exercise is dangerous but as long as you practice your deadlifts with picture perfect technique they are per- fectly safe. Having said that I must reiterate that picture perfect technique on this exercise is crucial to your safety. If you do it properly you should be fine. If you deadlift with sloppy form you will probably get injured. Sloppy form means your lower back is rounding. If that is happening you should stop deadlifting until you strengthen the appropriate muscles and develop the necessary flexibility and mobility to get all the way down. In the mean time I would stick with deadlifts that are elevated in the power rack or up on blocks or mats. By not lowering yourself all the way to the ground it will be a lot easier to keep an arch in your lower back. Take is slow and always be smart and safe. Never, ever allow the lower back to round whatso- ever. You need to check your ego at the door on this one and lift only what you are capable of doing with text book form. Risking an injury simply is not worth it. What can I do to stop my back from getting tight after training? There are a few things you can do to prevent this, which are listed below. 1. First, get a training partner to check your form and make sure that you are not rounding your lower back on your deadlifts. 2. Utilize The McKenzie Backbend. According to well-known physical therapist Robin McKenzie you should do five back bends immediately before and after lifting heavy objects off the floor. To perform this properly, stand straight up and put both of your hands on your lower back. Lean back as far as you can comfortably can and hold the position for a second. McKenzie states that, “By standing upright and bending back before lifting, you ensure that, as you begin the lift, there is no distortion already present in the joints of the lower back.” 3. Be sure to perform your heavy deadlifts later in the day if you have back problems. Most injuries occur within the first 4-5 hours of waking.
    • 85 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Why don’t my chin-ups improve as fast as other lifts, and what can I do about it? This is a phenomenon that has been experienced by nearly anyone who has ever worked out before. One thing you need to be sure of when you are doing chin ups is that you stay further away from failure than you do on every other exercise. There are no studies on this that I can quote to help me explain why, it’s just something that I have tested over the years with countless clients and it is advice that I strongly recommend you heed. Always leave a few reps in the tank on your chin-ups and finish your sets with absolute picture perfect form. If you can’t go up in reps every week, it’s not the end of the world. Be patient with this exercise and you will improve dramatically in good time. What should I do if I can’t do chin-ups? Until you can do chin-ups on your own I strongly recommend that you get a band HERE and loop it over the chin up bar. Pull down on the band (or have a partner do it) and put your feet on the bottom of it, so that you are now standing on it. Jump up and grab the chin up bar and do assisted chins this way. You can also put your knees on the band if that is more comfortable. Start with a band that offers more assistance and over time work your way down to a weaker band. Finally, remove the band and start doing them on your own. The other option is to have a partner hold your feet while you perform your chin-ups. Simply jump up to the bar and bend your knees ninety degrees while in the dead hang position. Now have your partner grab the tops of your feet to assist you in getting up. You should push down on his hands to help yourself get up and over time try to push less and less until you can do them on your own. I got pipe cleaners for arms. Got any tips I should keep in mind when training biceps? On all variations of curls you should consciously flex your biceps as hard as you can on the lift- ing portion of the movement and flex your triceps on the lowering or eccentric portion of the lift. In other words don’t just yield to gravity but try to pull the weight back down by imagining that you are doing a pushdown and flexing your triceps. Anytime you contract an antagonistic muscle (which is what the triceps are to the biceps) immediately before lifting it dramatically increases the contraction force of the agonist. This is a great tip that should be used on every set of curls.
    • 86 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ What if I don’t have a back extension? What I can replace them with? Kettlebell swings, barbell glute bridges or barbell hip thrusts. See descriptions below: Kettlebell Swing • Stand upright with feet wider than shoulder width • Hold a moderately heavy kettlebell with both hands between legs • Break at the hips and explosively push your butt back while swinging bell through legs • Think about hiking a ball to the quarterback • Don’t let bell go below knees or a lower back injury will be likely • Torso should be slightly above parallel to ground in bottom position • To reverse movement drive hips forward until your body is fully straight and locked up like a statue • Bell should come to upper chest height or where arms are parallel to ground • Squeeze glutes at lockout Barbell Glute Bridge • Lie flat on ground and roll a padded barbell up on to your hips • Bend knees 90° with feet flat on floor • Hold barbell with wide grip to prevent rolling • Drive feet into floor and lift hips until body is in a straight line • Squeeze glutes and hold for two seconds at top Barbell Hip Thrust • Exactly like barbell glute bridge except that your shoulders are on a flat bench Should I keep my wrist neutral, flexed or bent back when I curl? Some experts have advised that keeping your wrists bent back when performing a curl will negate the contribution from the forearms and thus isolate the biceps even better. This is true, but like I have mentioned many times already, isolation is useless and should be avoided not sought after. The other problem is that when you bend your wrists back you greatly increase the stress on them, which could lead to problems. Keep your wrists straight throughout the set and squeeze the barbell or dumbbell as hard as you possibly can. Once you get comfortable with that form you could try what the first Mr. Olympia, Larry Scott used to recommend, which is curling your wrists before initiating the curl motion at the elbows. This shortens the lever arm and allows you to use more weight to overload your biceps.
    • 87 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Why are there no pushdowns or triceps extensions? A study by Travil found that the majority of work during a triceps focused exercise is handled by the medial head of the muscle. It is only when the load is heavy that the lateral and long heads kick in. What this means is that the triceps respond best to high loads and if you wan them to grow optimally you have to hit them hard, with heavy weight. Therefore the heavy bench presses will do far more for you than isolation movements. The long head works best when the arms are extended overhead so the military presses will also pack meat on the triceps. The dips and close grip pushups are added to give them a nice pump and put the finishing touches on them. And even though they are done for higher reps it will still be with far more weight than you could ever do on an isolation exercise. Can I add some direct forearm work? A thick, vascular pair of forearms never fails to impress people. However, I’d like everyone to follow the program as is, then add extra work for weak body parts later on down the road. The forearms receive ample stimulation from all of the chins, rows and deadlifts you will be doing thus should grow just fine. For now I would highly recommend ordering a pair of Fat Gripz and using them on all of your dumbbell presses and curls. These are a very hard, dense rubber tube that goes over the dumbbell and increases the diameter, thus making your grip and forearm muscles work that much harder. Click HERE to order a pair of Fat Gripz. Are squats really the “king of all exercises?” If the squat is not the reigning king it’s definitely top three. When it comes to quad development there is no other exercise that can compare. Why do I fall forward when I squat? It could be weak abs and lower back muscles or excessively tight hip flexors. Stretch the hip flexors several times per week and especially right before squatting. As for the abs and lower back, that will improve with time. Be sure you are filling your belly with air and bracing your abs before you descend and drive your traps back into the bar while pushing your chest out and keeping your shoulder blades fully retracted. One other option is to try to widen your stance slightly.
    • 88 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ What should I do if I can’t get all the way down when squatting? This could be a flexibility issue so the first thing I recommend is that you stretch your calves, hip flexors, glutes and hamstrings. Also, be sure when you are descending on the squat that you actively pull yourself down into the bottom position with your hip flexors. To understand how this should feel, lie down flat on your back with your knees bent 90 degrees and have a partner pull on your ankles. Place your index and middle finger on your hip flexors and resist his force and try to bring your knees to your chest by actively pulling with your hip flexors. Try to lock that feel- ing in mentally and replicate it when squatting. Keep practicing each week and you will get better. Another thing that will help you is con- sciously opening up the knees when you get closer to parallel. Try to remember that you squat between your legs and not above them. That makes a big difference. My heels come up when squatting. What should I do to fix that problem? Try stretching your calves several times per week for the next month. Stand on a step and allow your heel to hang all the way down toward the ground. Hold that position for 30 seconds and repeat two more times. Do this before squatting as well. And get a really good pair of Squat Shoes. I don’t recommend squatting without them. How do I stretch my hip flexors? Get down into a lunge position while keeping your front foot flat on the floor and pushing your body as far forward as possible. Stay upright and drive your front knee over your toes. Now lean back and hold that position for ten seconds. To further increase the stretch, lean toward the oppo- site side while reaching over your head in that direction. So if you were to stretch your left hip flexor, you would lunge with your right foot forward and lean to your right side while reaching over your head with your left arm. Repeat this stretch as many times as needed before squatting. What do I do if my knees buckle in when squatting? A great quick fix that I learned about from Louie Simmons of Westside Barbell Club is to wrap a jump stretch band around your knees when squatting. Obviously you can’t do this with a bar but should do a few sets with just bodyweight or while holding a plate or kettlebell on your chest for a couple of weeks or months until this is no longer a problem. Be sure to really push your knees out against the bands throughout the set.
    • 89 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Can I squat with a towel or pad on the bar? Unless you want the rest of us to laugh and make fun of you I would strongly advise that you don’t. Not only that, but padding the bar increases the risk of it slipping during your set and can throw your form off. Build up your traps with heavy deadlifts and shrugs and you will no longer need to ask that question. What kind of sneakers should I wear when I squat? When you play basketball you wear a basketball shoe. When you play golf you wear a golf shoe. Squatting should be no different and you should wear a squat shoe. The kind I use and rec- ommend is the Rogue Do Win http://jasonferruggia.com/do-wins . These shoes will instantly improve your squat form and eliminate the dangerous tucking or rounding of the lower back. Therefore they will also make the squat dramatically safer. If you don’t have a pair of the Rogue Do Win squat shoes your next best option would be a flat- soled sneaker like the New Balance Minimus. This is especially important when you are squat- ting, deadlifting, or overhead pressing. You do not want any heel compressibility at all. Wearing running sneakers or anything with any type of air sole or gel sole is unsafe and reduces foot sta- bility and power. Running sneakers and the like also cause you to fall forward while squatting or deadlifting. Another problem with switching shoes and going from one brand of cross trainers to another brand of running sneakers from one squat day to the next is that it always becomes a new exer- cise. When your footing changes, the exercise changes. Therefore, it is difficult to reproduce the movement exactly the same way. This is horrible for learning and mastering an exercise and will lead to frustration and injury. Research has shown that always wearing shoes greatly reduces the sensitivity of the foot. It is also worth noting that barefoot populations suffer far fewer injuries than Americans who are always wearing jacked up running sneakers like the Nike Shox. Scientists have said that running sneakers actually cause injuries that would not have occurred without them. For this reason, I actually recommend that you train in socks or barefooted as often as possible. The only exercises I actually recommend shoes for are squats. This may not always be possible in a public gym but you can always slip your shoes off discreetly right before a set of heavy dead- lifts or overhead presses; two exercises where it really helps to be barefoot. If going native is not an option in your public gym, the next best option is to get yourself a pair of Vibram Five Fingers. These are a sock-like shoe with rubber bottoms made to simulate barefoot training as closely as possible.
    • 90 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ What should I do for cardio? First of all you want to think conditioning and not cardio. Traditional cardio makes you small and weak. It’s not very effective for fat burning either. Some guys make the mistake of ignoring conditioning all together in their quest for more size and strength. But this is a mistake. Conditioning is very important and everyone needs to do it regardless of their goals. It used to be thought that conditioning would cut into your size and strength gains but nothing could be further from the truth. Look at athletes like NFL players or UFC fighters. They do tons of condi- tioning work yet are jacked and muscular. By being in good shape and regularly doing some form of conditioning you will be able to eat more without getting fat and you will be less likely to over- train since your body will actually be in shape and able to tolerate the demands you are placing upon it. So never skimp on the conditioning and be sure to always get it in no matter what. That way you’ll be big, strong, lean and in shape instead of big, strong, fat and out of shape. Conditioning is already included at the end of the two lower body workouts in the form of farmers walks and sled work. If you still need some extra conditioning you can add 5-10 minutes to the end of one or both upper body days. The best option would be battling ropes. You can do various patterns for 10-20 seconds followed by a sixty-second rest period. Another option would be to jump rope for 30-60 seconds on, as fast as you can, followed by 30-60 seconds off. If you don’t want to add conditioning to the end of upper body days you can run hill sprints or do sled work on one weekend day per week. Some other options are: jumping rope, hitting a heavy bag, doing the battling ropes or swinging a sledgehammer. Simply try to go all out, as hard as you can for 20-30 seconds followed by a brief rest period of 30-90 seconds. Repeat for ten minutes. Have a puke bucket nearby just to be safe. On two or three of your non-training days per week you could do some low intensity cardio to help you stay lean and recover from your strength training sessions. This could be something as simple as going for a fast paced walk first thing in the morning. Thirty minutes will get the job done perfectly. “Whenever you come across a hill, run up it.” —George Hackenshmidt, The Way to Live, 1908
    • 91 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ How do I ensure that I will make continual, consistent progress in my workouts? As long as you strive to continually lift heavier weights or do more reps you will make consistent progress. It’s simple as that. I have already told you what the optimal rep ranges are for each body part. Those are not likely to change any time soon. As long as you train within those rep ranges you will grow. There is no need to experiment with different rep ranges on a regular basis in the hopes that the new stimulus will lead to more muscle growth. It won’t. Consistency and patience is of the utmost importance if you want to achieve extraordinary results from your training. How should I alter the workouts if I am a female? Females recover faster between sets and workouts and also tend to respond better to a slightly higher training volume than males do. The MGS workouts are designed specifically for males but if a female wants to do them she should make the following changes: • Add one set to every exercise in the main program. The beginner program can remain the same. • Add one rep to the rep ranges. So if the rep range is 6-8 reps you would do 7-9. If the rep range is 8-10 you would do 9-11 and so on and so on. • Cut 120 second rest periods to 90. Cut 90 second rest periods to 60. Cut 60 second rest periods to 45. Why are there no calf exercises included in any of the workouts? This program is for skinny guys who just need to put on a ton of overall size. Calf training doesn’t fit into that equation. If your calves really bother you feel free to do a couple of sets of sin- gle leg bodyweight calf raises on your stairs a few days per week. This can be done on off days. Simply do 2-3 sets till near failure with minimal rest in between legs. But don’t make it a major priority that you are obsessing over right now. Your goal is to pack on 20-30 pounds as fast as possible. If you do that your calves will grow just from the lower body work and the overall weight gain.
    • 92 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Why are there no abdominal exercises included in any of the workouts? No other muscle group gets more attention than the abs. Every time you pass the magazine stand or turn on the TV there is some new high tech gizmo or ab workout being promoted that will supposedly give you a six pack in less time than it takes to eat a bowl of ice cream. Unfortunately, what they don’t tell you is that you will never see your abs until you get near sin- gle digit body-fat levels. A lot of guys may see abdominal definition at around 15% body-fat but you won’t be shredded and really be able to see a six-pack until you are under 10%. The only way to do that is through proper diet and conditioning… and a lot of hard work. Endless sets of crunches and sit-ups will do nothing to burn abdominal fat but will break your back and ruin your posture. It is physically impossible to spot reduce so please ignore the tempta- tion to do 500 sit ups per day because you heard that your favorite pro athlete did it every day while growing up. He is where is and looks like he does due in large part to elite genetics; not because of all the sit-ups. Most of the big compound exercises you will be doing, such as overhead presses, pushups, squats, deadlifts and farmers walks work your abs to the max; therefore additional isolation work is largely unnecessary and often counterproductive for the hardgainer looking to gain size rapidly. Not only that, but loaded spinal flexion, which is what most guys do when they perform sit ups and machine crunches, can lead to a degeneration of the discs, shortening of the hip flexors and a lifetime of back pain. Forget about direct isolation ab work for the next twelve weeks and just worry about getting jacked. I’m an athlete and need to add some explosive speed training to the workouts. How do I do that? First of all, these workouts are perfect for athletes because there are no machines used and everything you do is designed to build functional real world muscle and strength. Also, because higher reps are minimized so is excessive soreness and fatigue. That means you will always be fresh and explosive on off days between workouts for when you want to run, practice or play. As already mentioned, all reps should be performed explosively on every exercise. Never do slow grinders or go anywhere close to failure. However, if you are an athlete you will also need to add in some specialized explosive power exercises like Olympic lifts and jumps. To add this to the MGS workouts you have a few different options.
    • 93 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ My first choice in explosive work will always be some type of jump. You can simply choose some a jump (box jump, vertical jump, triple jump, standing broad jump, kneeling jump, hurdle jump, etc.) and do it for five sets of three reps with about a 60-90 seconds rest between sets. Do them immediately before squats and deadlifts. If you are playing a sport during the week the need for plyometric work and your ability to recover from it will be reduced. Also, remember that there are Olympic pull variations on Day 4 during Phase 2 & 3, which will build explosive power as well. Is it ok to use any lifting equipment like straps, wrist wraps, knee wraps, knee sleeves, elbow sleeves, gloves and/or a belt? Let’s address each of these, one at a time. • Straps- These can be used on exercises such as dead lifts, heavy rows and shrugs when the weights you are able to use exceed your grip strength. At that point, not only can you use straps but you should use straps because you don’t want your grip strength to be the limiting factor. If you can dead lift 405 with straps but only have the grip strength to hold 350, you are robbing your body of growth potential. • Wrist wraps- Unless you have some kind of wrist problem I wouldn’t recommend that you use wrist wraps. • Knee wraps- I don’t recommend ever using knee wraps unless you are competing in power- lifting. If you are competing in powerlifing, knee wraps can aid you greatly and are, in fact, a must use item. But otherwise, skip the knee wraps. • Knee sleeves- Neoprene knee sleeves can be worn when training to keep the knees warm which way may help some lifters feel better and may also keep the knees safer. They are not required. • Elbow sleeves- These can be worn for the same reasons as knee sleeves. If you have any kind of elbow problems I recommend that you invest in a pair of elbow sleeves. • Gloves- Gloves do nothing but prevent calluses and keep your hands pretty. If you’re a man and would like to remain one, I highly recommend that you avoid ever being seen wearing lifting gloves.
    • 94 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ • Lifting belt- A lifting belt is an artificial aid that will allow you to lift more weight than you could on your own without. The downside is that by covering up a weak link in the chain, in this case your abs or lower back, the extra stress has to go somewhere. This usually ends up being your knees or spine, often times resulting in serious injuries. You should only wear a belt if you have a preexisting back injury, and then in that case on only on heavy squats and deadlifts. In all other cases I do not recommend it. Strengthen your entire core and build your own belt; don’t buy one. You’ll thank me in the long run. What happens if I gain a lot of muscle and then stop working out? Will it all turn to fat? No, this is one of the oldest myths in the book. Muscle and fat are two completely different types of tissue and one cannot turn into the other; it is impossible. If you stop training you will lose muscle and you will probably gain fat, since your metabolism will slow down. But the muscle itself will not turn to fat. By the same token, a fat guy cannot expect to magically transform his fat into muscle when he begins a serious training program. His best bet would be to lose the fat first and then start building muscle. I’m stuck on certain dumbbell exercises since a ten-pound jump is too much for me right now. Is there any way around this? When weight increases become more difficult it is always beneficial to have Plate Mates to add to dumbbells. These are tiny magnetic weights and come in 1.5 and 5/8 pound increments. Sometimes it can be very difficult on a dumbbell exercise to increase from 70’s to 75’s because it is actually a ten-pound jump when you add the two dumbbells together. Therefore, with the Plate Mates, you now have the option of going to 71.25 or 72.5 on the next workout. Small increases add up big time in the long run. I’d also recommend ordering your own set of Fractional Plates http://jasonferruggia.com/fractionalplates. This is another great investment you can make to ensure consistent progress. Whereas going up from 185 pounds to 190 pounds may be too big of a jump sometimes, you can now go from 185 to 186 or 187.5 with the use of these smaller plates. These small plates will help you keep making progress while avoiding frustration and injury. I can’t recommend them highly enough.
    • 95 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Can I use the safety squat bar in place of a regular straight bar for squats? Yes, if you have a safety squat bar please feel free to use it. This is a great option and my per- sonal favorite bar to squat with. Can I replace the free squat with a box squat? Yes, as long as you are doing so for the right reasons. I would only do that if you can’t squat properly due to some type of knee issues. Box squats are, indeed, a bit less stressful on the knees, however they don’t build mass in the legs anywhere nearly as effectively as an Olympic style free squat. Can I use a Swiss bar or football bar in place of the straight bar for presses? Absolutely! I highly recommend it, in fact. If own or have access to a bar with angled or neutral grips that will always be the preferred option for pressing since those types of bars will place far less stress on the wrists, elbows and shoulders. What exercises should I use Fat Gripz on? All dumbbell presses and curl variations. You can also add them to your dumbbell handles or farmers walk implements to thicken up the grip. I don’t recommend them for rows or pull ups because the grip becomes too hard to hold on to and thus, you don’t train your back muscles with adequate load. I really want to build up this stack of dimes I have for a neck. Can I do some extra neck work besides what’s included on Day 4 each week? Yes. On Day 2 you can add in some manual resistance front neck raises (flexion). Have a part- ner hold a towel over your head to provide resistance. You can also fold a towel up for padding then place a plate on your forehead. The third option is to order a ten-pound neck weight that wraps around your head with Velcro. Whatever option you choose the technique will be the same- lay face up with your head hanging off the end of bench (or your bed, couch, etc.) and simply nod and up and down. These can be done 4-6 hours before or after your main workout. Do three sets of 15-20 reps.
    • 96 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ How do I make inverted rows harder? Firstly, be sure you are doing them on rings or the Jungle Gym XT. Secondly, hold each rep at the top for 2-3 seconds in the fully contracted position while squeezing your shoulder blades tightly together and keeping your entire body in one straight line. Once this gets too easy you can start loading them with a weighted vest or chains wrapped around your back. You can also have a partner place a sandbag on your chest. Or you can go with the poor mans McGuyver option and throw some weight in a backpack. How do I make suspended pushups harder? The same way you do inverted rows. In addition to those changes you can also set the straps farther apart. The function of the pecs is to draw the arms across the midline of the body. So by setting the straps further apart you make the pecs have to work even harder to pull the handles together as you press your way up. You can also experiment with a modified planche pushup variation on the rings where you start to supinate your palms (move them into a curl grip) and down towards your hips as you descend. Be warned, though, that this is an advanced progression and should only be attempted after you have dominated regular suspended pushups. I don’t have a Jungle Gym XT or rings. What should I replace suspended pushups with? Flat dumbbell presses or weighted pushups. I don’t have access to neutral grip chin up handles. What should I do? You should set up your Jungle Gym XT or rings and do chins on them. If you don’t have either of those then you will just have to do regular pull ups. Should I add weight to the bodyweight exercises like suspended pushups, inverted rows, chin ups and dips when I can get more reps than the program calls for? You have to make the exercises more challenging over time. So you should either add an iso- metric pause to the most difficult portion of the exercise or you should add weight with chains, weighted vests or a dip belt.
    • 97 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ What else can I do on off days to keep my shoulders strong and healthy? Do fifty reps of shoulder dislocations with a band and fifty reps of band pull aparts every day. These should be done in one continuous set with light resistance, but enough to get a pump and a pretty good burning sensation. After you’ve doing that for a few months you can add a second set in each day. What does AMAP mean? As many as possible. But that doesn’t mean you should go to failure. Always leave a rep or two in the tank. What should I do when I finish the program? If you want to continue to make incredible gains after you finish Muscle Gaining Secrets your best bet will be to move on to another 12 week strength and mass building program found in The Renegade Inner Circle (http://www.RenegadeInnerCircle.com)
    • 98 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Meet The Program Creator ason Ferruggia is a former skinny-fat-ass who gained over 80 pounds of drug-free muscle by using the techniques in this book. He is also a highly sought after, world-renowned strength and conditioning specialist based out of the New York/New Jersey area. Since 1994 he has trained more than 700 athletes from over 90 different professional and collegiate organiza- tions. He has also worked extensively with firefighters, police officers and military personnel as well as numerous weekend warriors, Hollywood stars and entertainers. Jason is known for his ability to help people gain muscle and shed body-fat as fast as humanly possible and for the incredible transformations he makes in all of his clients’ physiques. Jason is currently the chief training adviser for Men’s Fitness magazine where he also has his own monthly column called The Hard-Gainer. He is also an advisory board member to Live Strong and has authored hundreds of articles for various other fitness related websites and magazines such as Muscle & Fitness, Men’s Health, Maximum Fitness, MMA SportsMag, Today’s Man, Muscle and Fitness, Hers and Shape. A regular lecturer and media consultant, Jason has given seminars all over the country on the subject of fitness and performance enhancement, and his cutting edge training techniques have been featured on over 30 radio and TV stations such as CBS, ESPN, FOX, ABC, 1010 Wins: New York, America Tonight and many others. For more information about Jason and his training methods and products, please visit www.JasonFerruggia.com Note: A special thanks goes to Sean Hyson for all of his help on this project. J
    • 99 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ Resources Jungle Gym XT ( http://jasonferruggia.com/junglegymxt ) Gymnastics Rings ( http://jasonferruggia/trainingrings ) Kettlebells ( http://jasonferruggia.com/kettlebells ) Fractional Plates ( http://jasonferruggia.com/fractionalplates ) Jump Rope ( http://jasonferruggia.com/jumprope ) Pushing Sled ( http://jasonferuggia.com/sled ) Dragging Sled ( http://jasonferruggia.com/dragsled ) Strength Training Bands ( http://jasonferruggia.com/strengthbands ) Fat Gripz ( http://jasonferruggia.com/fatgripz ) Squat Shoes ( http://jasonferruggia.com/do-wins ) Battling Ropes ( http://jasonferruggia.com/battlingropes )
    • 100 Copyright © 2012 by Jason Ferruggia. All Rights Reserved http://www.MuscleGainingSecrets.com/ FTC Disclosure As of December 1st, 2009 the FTC requires that we disclose whenever there could be hidden interests or unspoken biases related to recommendations. As I have already stated I only recommend products that I wholeheartedly recommend and would use myself. However, to cover my ass, please assume that for every link I have placed in this manual I will be getting paid thousands of dollars, flown around the world first class and provided with a lifetime supply of free hookers by the owners of said companies.