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Muscle-Building Workout and Diet

JEFF: What’s up, guys? Jeff Cavaliere, Today we’re talking about building muscle,
and we’re going to keep it basic, guys. I’m going to make this the most helpful video
you’ve ever seen on this topic and it might actually throw a few curveballs your way. I’m going to tell you right now, everything
that we do in this video is going to revolve around one thing. That is intensity. Not just what you might think it is, but also
how intensely focused you are on that goal, and how you’re going to get there. Let me just clarify right off the bat that
this intensify is not necessarily what I’m talking about. JESSE: S*#T! DAMN IT! F#%*! F#%*! F#%*! JEFF: Okay, not that. What we’re talking about is an element of
that, but more importantly like I said in the opening, how intensely focused you are
on the goal that you’re saying you are. If you’re trying to build muscle here, and
that is what your goal is, how committed are you to it? It starts with a plan because if you don’t
have that you’re not getting there. I can guarantee you that. Think about how many times you’ve seen people
who walk into the gym, they accidently think that just by swiping that gym card they’ve
somehow earned their man card. “I did it. I showed up. I’m building muscle.” No, you’re not. You haven’t done anything yet. You’ve just showed up. When you go to the gym you have to have some
sort of plan for that day, and how it’s going to get you closer to that goal. Then how it relates in the bigger picture
to where you’re going from there. How does that single workout set you up for
the next one? You see, far too many times I see people walk
into the gym and they’re doing what they like to call “instinctive training”. Instinctive training doesn’t mean “I’m going
to do this machine because it’s next to this machine.” Realizing that this is an abductor machine
for my thighs, and this is a bicep curl machine. Sure, you might be on that Buns and Guns program
– or whatever it is that you’re following at the moment – and maybe it’s justified
in that case, but most of the time they’re not. They’re just walking around the gym doing
whatever is close to each other, with no real plan. That’s instinctive, but not in a good way. Or they’re like “Well, I know better than
that, Jeff. I’ll just do back exercises. I’m going to do a pull down, I’m going to
do pull ups. They’re all back exercises so I’m actually
approaching this very scientifically.” Maybe not because what you’re looking at here
is doing a bunch of vertical point exercises. Where are you working in your horizontal plane? Where are you changing the planes around? Are you actually just overlapping strength
curves? Should you be mixing in cables with dumbbells? Because you can get strength curves that are
actually going to complement each other. So there’s more to it than that, and if you’re
goal here is hypertrophy, you also have to understand that there is an element of strength
that needs to lay at the base of that. You can’t just come in – look, I know maybe
you’ve seen an exercise I’ve done on this channel that looked appealing, it looked creative,
it looked fun, you wanted to try it out; but there’s got to be more to it than that. You have to be willing to commit to the basics. The compound movements. Relying on progressive overload to build that
foundation of strength because you’re going to need the strength to ultimately help you
get as big as possible. But we know that there are elements here that
people overlook all the time because they don’t have a plan. You need to have a plan, and everything starts
from there. So the plan is in place now, but now you actually
have to do something. This is where the second big focus comes in. That is: your effort. What are you actually doing? How much effort are you exerting when you
actually go to pick up the weights? This is your biggest opportunity because if
you blow this I’ll tell you, you’re not going to grow. Here’s what I’m talking about. I’m actually going to show you in action what
it looks like. This is me just doing a set of an inclined
dumbbell bench-press. I want you to see what it’s actually like
as I approach a set. I didn’t go into this set thinking there’s
a specific number I have to hit because right off that bat, throw the numbers out the window. The numbers are there for a guideline. The hypertrophy range is in the 10 to 12 rep
range. It could go 7, 8, 9. People can grow muscle on any of those ranges
if the effort level is there. But in the generally accepted range of 10
to 12, how are you approaching this? Are you stopping just because you hit a number? That’s a major mistake. Instead, let your effort guide you. Push as hard as you can. Try to accomplish something in this set that
you’ve never accomplished before, if possible. I realize that’s not always necessary. Some people are going to stay “Well, what
if I want to train for volume? If I’m training for volume here I’m going
to be doing some maximal training.” So every set is going to be some max and then
we’ll leave some in the tank. Let me tell you this about volume training,
guys. If the accrual, the addition, the added effect
of all of those submaximal sets isn’t in, and of itself a stressor, or a stimulus for
growth, then guess what? All you’re doing is a bunch of shitty warmup
sets. You need to have that accrual of all that
volume to become a stressor if it’s going to provide the intensity needed to create
overload. So guys, you need to bring whatever it is
that you’re training for. Bring that effort and intensity to every,
single thing you do and that is when you’ll start to see those noticeable changes from
your hard work. So I left you hanging there at the end of
that last set for a reason. I actually wasn’t finished. It looked like I might have been done, but
not quite so fast. What I actually do is add set intensifiers. For me, I really on the rest-pause technique
here. Something that allows me to rest for a brief
moment to recoup, to regroup, to get back a little bit of strength so I can push through
another couple of reps. Every, single, additional rep that I can eek
out, every bit of extra effort that I can put out in this set is going to be a stimulus
for overload. It doesn’t just have to be this. It can be a super set. It can be a drop set. There are a lot of other techniques that you
can use, but I really, highly encourage you to not just quit when you think it’s over
because you’ll be surprised at how much your body is holding back. Your mind is way stronger than what your body
is willing to give it. For once, let your mind be in charge. Let it say “You know what, Jeff? Get your ass back on the bench and give me
another couple reps.” You’ll be surprised at what will come out
of your body. I can guarantee you this: more reps. So use these set intensifier techniques if
you want to see more from your workouts. So you have the plan, you exerted the effort,
you went the extra mile here with the set intensifiers, and the set is over. Now what happens? Well, if you’re doing it the right way you’re
going to respect your rest, or you’re going to do this. You’re going to take out your phone and start
looking for what’s going on with Instagram, or maybe checking out what’s going on with
Facebook, or maybe even – if you’re going to do a YouTube link, you’re going to my channel,
I hope – and you’re looking for a video there. But that’s not what you want to do when you’re
training. Instead, the only thing you should be taking
this phone out for is to set the timer, and make sure that you’re getting your ass back
on the bench again to do the next set exactly when the timer tells you to. If you’re training for hypertrophy, I always
like to say you can train hard, or you can train long; but you can’t do both. If you’re training for hypertrophy get yourself
back in there with 60 to 90 seconds rest. You’ll be surprised – for those guys that
like to go on the phone – how fast that comes around. I want you prepared, and ready for the next
set so when the timer hits you’re going into the next set. That’s a very short period of time if you
actually start to hold yourself accountable to that. If you’re training for strength, on the other
side of the coin, you might be trying to extend those rest periods. More like 3 to 5 minutes, neurologically allowing
your body to recover, and regroup so you can come back and attack that next set of your
1 to 3 rep max with a lot more intensity. But don’t train for hypertrophy and rest
for strength. And don’t train for strength and rest for
hypertrophy. You have to have just as much of a plan for
your rest as you did for your work set, as you did for your overall workout. It’s all part of the equation. Okay, last but not least – not by a long
shot – if you’re a natural lifter, and you’re trying to build muscle, when it comes to learning
the basics here you must respect your recovery. Just as much, if not more, than everything
else you did up to this point because you can get it almost all right, but if you screw
up your recovery you’re never going to build muscle. It’s just like the guy who walks over the
tight rope, he holds that balance beam, he’s doing great. Except when he gets right to about, maybe
90% of the way there, if he falls of, guess what he is? He’s dead. Not close. He’s dead. You need to approach your recovery the very
same way. That means you need to take seriously your
sleep, your nutrition, your supplementation, your management of your own stress levels;
all the things that will dramatically impact your ability to either really recover from
your training, or not recover from your training at all. Just because it’s the part that’s inactive,
the part where you’re not doing the pushing, or the pulling, or the squatting; the stuff
that seems boring is just as impactful on the overall picture as that element of your
training. So guys, make sure you’re getting your recovery
right. There you have it, guys. Building muscle 101. It really isn’t, as you can see, that complicated. But it’s also not easy because it does take
a lot of effort. It’s going to require, above anything else,
that intensity, and it’s also going to require that you are intensely focused on making sure
that you’re not overlooking any of those elements. Guys, I try to lay it out for you step by
step in all of our plans. The only thing I can’t give you: I can’t give
you the effort. I can only try to pull it out of you. I will do that. In all of our programs I try to coach you
every, single step of the way to make sure you give me your best effort. But ultimately, the only person that’s going
to know whether you’re doing that, or not is you. I’m trying to encourage you, via this video,
to make sure you dig deep inside. If building muscle is your goal, realize it’s
going to take some effort and overload, and I know you’ve got it in you. Hopefully this will bring it out. If you’re looking for those programs, guys,
they’re over at In the meantime, if you’ve found this video
helpful leave your comments and thumbs up below. Let me know what else I can cover you in these
videos and I’ll do my best to do that for you in the days, and weeks ahead. All right, see you soon.

100 thoughts on “Muscle Building 101 for Men (GUARANTEED GAINS!)

  1. Want to win an ATHLEAN-X program for free, no strings attached? Click the link below to find out how!

  2. I has been over 20 years ago since I left back this sport , that is lefting weights . I have swallowed all sorts of battening or surfeiting pills to fatten my arms with a great immense of unflutty exercise those worn me out , my whole body was exuberant with shreds and nothing can truffle it well portioned out cleave. I worked out at closed premises and used all upmarket products , yet I found this sport so bouncing and repellent later on

  3. I hear you say sometimes you should be in the 3 to 8 rep range and sometimes like in this video the 10 to 13 rep range. Which should I be doing?

  4. What scientific evidence is there that shortening rest intervals improves hypertropy? I don't think I've seen any. Knowing that rests for strength should be long does not imply that rests for hypertrophy should be short.

  5. Can you give a discount to your training programs for people who lives in other countries? 🙂
    I know it is already not so much, but dollar currency makes them expensive in some countries. Like Turkey :). I will be happy if you respond.

  6. Another great one! Thank you, Jeff! This is a good reminder for many of us, and a good 101 for everyone else. Right on!

  7. I kinda feel like I'm that guy just picking the closest machine available… I usually have an idea in mind of what I want to do, but then its already occupied, so I just go around take something thats available…

  8. I know he wasn't really in this video, but we all love Jesse and videos. That shit's funny. You still did a great job of getting the point of cross and being serious. But it's nice to break up the monotony a little bit when Jessie pops in and does goofy shit. We want to train but you got to have some fun in life 2.

  9. in 60-90 seconds even if I'm doing 10-12 reps with a lighter weight my muscles haven't fully recovered and all the following sets suck ass. Should I lower the weight more, does your body get used to it?

  10. Thanks, Jeff. You say some seemingly basic things here that had never occurred to me. I love the “quick tips” style of content.

    Production note: the score ticker behind you is super distracting. Thanks.

  11. Jeff in short, you’ve changed my life and I thank you. Question: what are your thoughts on German Volume Training? Thank you again

  12. Love Jesse's colorful metaphors, I do this at times just loading up the bars. Eating after 6 pm sadly can't apply to all, working 4 – 10 hour days on swing shift, my dinner is roughly at 3 am. I usually put about a 12 hour fast between dinner and a late breakfast, seems to work.

  13. Jeff helped me fix my rounded shoulders id had for years in literally 10 mins. After that I knew this guy is the real deal.

  14. So I should train to failure on most of my isolation exercises? What are the circumstances where I don’t train to failure or add a set intensifier?

  15. my big question is that I've been bulking up over the months a lot but have actually lost a few pounds..

  16. Lol, the intro reminded me of a story from one time I went with a guy I know to the gym, the guy literally went on a leg press machine, took a selfie for Instagram, then skidadeled.
    I never laughed so hard in a gym in my life

  17. I'm a disabled war veteran battling ALS and I'm the hardest worker at my gym. These people walk around socializing more than they workout! I've asked anyone who would listen "Is this a gym or a coffee shop?" Why can't people do a set, take a small sip of water (20-30 sec.), do another set like I do? Half the reason why I have my headphones on is so I don't have to listen to peoples' inane conversations. Needless to say, I liked this vid.

  18. Sorry dude… you lost me at and for the first time of: talking too much. What was your point again?

  19. Thank you so much.. I tried your inputs (only body weight exercises + importantly, the key points of focus) and have transformed from an endo morph to a lean muscular body. Will love to share pictures of the interest. However, what I am struggling is to build on specific areas.. like delts.. remember I positively don't touch weights.. but follow all the alternatives Jeff shows without them.. keep it up with the videos. Thanks

  20. People give him shit for not wearing a shirt. But I know damn well if I had his body I would be naked 24/7

  21. Is it good to stretch before and it after workouts, and if so what stretches are best, how many hours of sleep are needed per night, and lastly diet

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