Do you want to get bigger? Of course you do. Is there anyone who really doesn’t want to add more size? Well not the kind you get from eating Big-Mac’s, but more size from adding muscle. I don’t think there is a single person who would be against adding an extra 5 or 10 pounds of muscle to their frame.
But how do you do this? You need to cause the muscles to experience hypertrophy which means to increase the volume (size) or a muscle (or organ) due to enlargement of its cells. In this case the muscle fibers themselves increase in size and thickness from being torn and re-growing during the workout-recovery phases.
So what are the best ways to create hypertrophy for muscles? These are my favorites!
Top 5 Hypertrophy Tips
Skip the Isolation – Compound exercises are the best for building large muscle size. Using multiple joints allows for greater leverage and larger amounts of weight to be moved. This heavier load results in greater stress being placed on the muscles being worked. That in turn creates growth. As wonderful as doing concentration curls for the biceps are, reverse grip bent over rows are going to put more stress on the biceps (as well as back) because of the amount of weight you are forcing them to move, even over a limited range.
Train Big – This means don’t worry about all of the things you try to do when getting lean or cut. You need proper fuel for size and shouldn’t worry about a few extra grams of carbohydrates. By the same token doing excessive exercises that are more for form and shape can be skipped. We are looking to build big muscles. Hours of cardio each week? No sir!
Squat – This is the best overall mass builder and top way to cause muscle hypertrophy across multiple areas of your body. This is the king of multi-joint exercises and touches on more muscle groups than anything else.
Deadlifts – Some people might put this exercise above squats, but I look at it as a close second. You can usually move more weight with a deadlift after proper form is learned. But I feel more of the body is worked during squats due to weight placement and balance requirements. However both exercises are absolutely needed for the fastest strength and size gains.
KISS – Keep it simple stupid. Too many people over think a training program. Often they will add more and more into it. But the truth is that the program should be very simple. You want to have a high level of focus and intensity. You need simple, compound exercises. Then you attack the workout hard followed by rest and fuel intake. Then you repeat the process. Adding in a ton of additional exercises, complex cardio routines, and other things all draw away from the simple aspect of training big to get big.
A lot of guys started lifting weights in high school for football. Typically in the gym we would bench press, squat, and deadlift. The gym didn’t have lots of other extras so we did some dips, chins, and maybe leg presses before we had to run laps. But even that simple program worked wonders because we gave all out effort and focused on lifting more weight whenever we could. We kept it simple and looked to gain size and strength. You can do that to.