FAQ

Below you will find a list of the most frequently asked questions people email me about building muscle, losing fat and any other question that seems to always pop-up.

If I didn’t answer your question here, feel free to leave a comment on the bottom of this page.

Frequently Asked Questions:

    • How Much Weight Lifting Should I Do?

In general, you should train with weights a minimum of 3 times per week and a maximum of 5 times per week. 3 times is usually plenty, especially if you are new to training with weights. Personally, I train with weights 4 times a week. Each workout should last no longer than an hour and 15 minutes. My best workouts usually last no longer than 45 minutes.

It doesn’t take much to stimulate muscle growth. It’s about quality, not quantity.

    • How Much Cardio Should I Do?

Everybody, no matter what your goals are, can benefit from 1-2 cardio sessions each week. If your goal is to cut up, increase that number to 3 or 4+ cardio sessions each week.

It all depends on what your diet looks like. Here’s a tip: It’s much easier to alter your diet to save 250 calories than it is to burn those 250 calories through cardio.

    • Should I Use Machines or Free Weights?

The majority of your weight training should be done with free weights such as dumbbells and barbells. There’s nothing wrong with throwing a few machines in the mix though. I actually love cables because they put constant resistance on the muscle.

    • How Much Should I Eat?

Determine your bodybuilding macros and then divide it among the amount of meals you can fit into your schedule. I find it best to take in 5-6 small meals a day. It helps me with not feeling hungry all day. The exact amount of calories you need to consume is going to vary. A female who weights 145lbs and wants to lose 10lbs of fat is going to have different calorie requirements than a male who weights 145lbs and wants to gain 10lbs of muscle.

If you are having trouble eating clean, because healthy food is just too boring you need to check out the bodybuilding cook book below. I absolutely love it.

Click Here To Download The Bodybuilding Cookbook

 

    • Do I Need Expensive Equipment or Gym Memberships To Get In Shape?

No, you can use bodyweight exercises like push-ups and pull-ups to get started. When you have enough money, I recommend investing into some free weights such as dumbbells and barbells. Usually, you can find a cheap used set at local yard sales and even craigslist or eBay. This is a great option for some people who like to train from home.

I like to work out at the gym, it gets me motivated. It’s hard for me to get in the “zone” when I’m working out alone at home. Plus, these days you can usually find a great gym for less than $30/month. I think it’s well worth the price.

    • What Are The Best Muscle Building Exercises?

In my experience, these are the best exercise for each muscle group:

Biceps – Barbell Curls.

Triceps – Close-Grip Bench Press.

Chest – All Bench Press Variations.

Shoulders – Military Press.

Traps – Shrugs and Deadlifts.

Back – Pull Ups.

Legs – Squats, Standing Calve Raises, Lunges.

    • Should I Take Supplements and Which Ones Do You Recommend?

Most of the supplements you see advertised in magazines and on websites are bull shit. The magazines they are advertised in are usually owned by the same exact supplement companies that are trying to sell you the magic powder.

I only recommend a few supplements.

So the answer to this question is easy.

If you’re a beginner – None.

Newbies make awesome gains quickly since they’re exposing their bodies to something so new.

For everyone else – First, make sure your diet is in check (it most likely isn’t) If your diet is good to go, the supplements I would recommend are Whey Protein, Creatine, Multivitamins and possibly a Pre-Workout Energy Supplement.

I order all of my supplements from Amazon. They have the best prices and fastest shipping.

    • What Is The Quickest Way To Build Muscle?

Way too hard to explain in a few sentences. Eat more and start lifting weights.

13 Comments on "FAQ"

  1. Kyle Costello | August 3, 2012 at 8:25 pm | Reply

    Alright thanks so much for the help. I really appreciate it. And I will let you know of my progress and if I have any follow up questions. Thanks so much.

    Kyle

  2. Kyle Costello | August 3, 2012 at 7:28 pm | Reply

    Hey Anthony,

    Thanks for the advice. Yes i do split routines of arms, legs, chest, back, then rest one day and get back into the gym. If going back into a full body routine, should i just take one lift from every split routine and turn it into a full body workout?And also should i change the amount of sets/reps i do? For example, if i do 3 sets of 10 for squats should i bump it up to 4 sets of 12 with a lighter weight? And for the cardio, i do a 20 minute warm up on the bike just to get my legs moving, then i run anywhere from a mile to 15 minutes on the treadmill. Thanks for all your help! I really appreciate it!

    Kyle

    • I’m happy to help.

      Yeah, that’s what I would do. 1-2 exercises for the big muscles, and just 1 exercise for the small muscles (arms, shoulders, abs, etc).
      I would also do different exercises each day of the week.

      So Monday if you choose bench press for chest, squat for legs, military press for shoulders. Wednesday you should choose something different for each of the muscle groups. Maybe incline bench press or dips for chest, lunges and leg extensions for legs, and Arnold presses for shoulders. Just keep switching the exercises up. Don’t forget, keep the rest period short. 30-45 seconds. The fat will just fall off you!

      I recommend working out in all rep ranges, whether you’re doing a split or a full routine I would always be targeting all rep ranges. Mix it up.
      Personally, on big compound heavy exercises (squat, bench press, etc) I usually do 5-8 reps. On isolation exercises (curls, tricep extensions, etc). I usually do 12-15 reps.
      That doesn’t mean I never go light on squat and bench. I do sometimes.

      Let me know if this helps you. I’m excited to see the progress you make.

  3. Kyle Costello | August 3, 2012 at 7:31 am | Reply

    Hey Anthony,

    I’m not really a beginning weight lifter, I’ve been doing it for 4 or 5 years and I’ve experienced great gains in muscle, but the problem is that I just can’t lose this excess weight. Im an 18 year old who can Bench press and squat More than most people in The gym But everybody thinks im just overweight since i have no definition due to this excess weight. I’ve tried it all. I’ve watched my macros, worked out on empty stomachs, stopped my creatine intake for a month, and even experimented with fat burners. And absolutely none of it worked. I can’t figure out what I’m doing wrong. I work out 5 days a week and do cardio and abs every day on an empty stomach in the morning. I need some help. Any advice? All advice and tips are greatly appreciated. Thanks for reading.

    Kyle

    • Hey Kyle.

      Glad to have you as a reader, man.

      You sound a bit like me. I gain weight and hold onto weight easily. Sometimes it seems like I can eat perfectly, do cardio, and lift weights and the scale just doesn’t move.

      It’s both a gift and a curse.

      Gift – ask any of your hardgainer buddies. Some guys can eat literally anything all day and not gain any weight. Sounds good, right? Ask those guys who’s shoes they’d rather be in. Yours or theirs. I can almost guarantee they’d rather be in your shoes. At least we’re able toe fairly easily gain and keep size.

      Curse – Well, you’re experiencing first hand why it can be a curse. Sometimes it feels like getting lean is impossible. Don’t worry, it’s not.

      Can you tell me a little more about your training?

      What type of weight training are you doing? I have found that when it’s time to cut up and start leaning down I see better fatloss results when I switch from a split routine and do a full body routine 3-4x a week. I assume you’re doing a split routine right now, meaning each day you go to the gym you’re training a different muscle group or two. Right?

      Try doing a full body routine for 6-8 weeks. You’re not going to be able to lift as much weight as you would on a split, but the workout sessions are going to be more intense. Think about it, you’re going from doing 1 or 2 big exercises each workout to 4-5 big exercises each workout.

      Another thing you can and should try is reducing your rest time in-between sets. Again, you’re going to find that you can’t lift as much weight, but you’re really going to start sweating, feel your heart rate increasing, and the entire workout is going to be a lot more intense.

      I know it screws with some guys heads to decrease the amount of weight they are lifting, don’t worry. You’re not going to lose any muscle as long as you’re still eating a high protein diet and still hitting the weights, you’re going to keep all your muscle and possibly even gain some muscle.

      What kind of cardio are you doing?

      I know the conventional bodybuilding wisdom says you could do slow cardio for 30-45 minutes and see the fat melt off. From what you’ve told me, I would recommend doing intense cardio 3-5 times a week, first thing in the morning or immediatley after your workout. Jumprope is my favorite, but I also like sprints and HIIT on the treadmill. No slow paced cardio, it needs to be intense. You should be huffing and puffing, you should be out of breath, you should leave a trail of sweat. If you can read a magazine while you’re doing it, the cardio is not intense enough 🙂

  4. Hi Anth
    we hear u. keep comin your posts.And can u make a table or somthin graphical to which I hangout somewhere I work it really keeps tuned, like as sets per day exercises. I will showup ur that post on facebook or youtube somewhere Inshallah.
    Thanks.

    • Hey Azharkhan,

      I’m working on hiring somebody to create a graphic just like you mentioned.

      I’ll let you know when it’s ready!

  5. Hi Anthony,

    My weight seems to be stuck at 140 and I’m not entirely sure what I’m doing wrong. Although I’m seeing more definition, I don’t feel as though I’m making the progress I’m wanting to. I lift 4-5 times a week, do cardio(rowing mostly) 3+ times a week, and eat well… ANny suggestions? It’s really getting under my skin…

    Thanks,
    Seth

    • Hey Seth,

      Are you trying to gain or lose weight?

      If you’re trying to gain, I think you should cut back on the cardio.

      Also, remember… most of your progress is going to come from changes
      made to your diet.

      If you are a hardgainer that absolutely cannot gain weight I recommend 2 drastic (but sure fire) measures.

      1. GOMAD – Gallon Of Milk a Day. Simply drink 1 gallon of milk each day
      OR
      2. Weekly Buffet Binge. Simply go to the buffet once a week and eat as much food as possible.

      **Don’t do both at time same time**

      If you have tried everything and just can’t gain weight, give those a shot.

      If you haven’t tried everything, simply start eating more, add a couple of high calorie protein shakes
      to your diet, and cut back on your cardio.

      Let me know how it goes!

  6. Hey anthony.. I’m new to your website..
    I want to start going to the gym but i dont know where to start there is a deal in my local gym so i want to start going.
    I’m 6’3″ and weigh about 14 stone.. i was wondering would you have any tips for a beginner in my case? Thanks, Danny.

    • Hey Danny!

      What’s up? I’m happy to have you reading my articles.

      My tip for a beginner is simply to just go to the gym 3 days a week.

      Don’t over think the process, just get in the habbit of going to the gym on a regular basis, at a set time/day and working out.
      Humans are VERY habitual creatures. We don’t like change. So once you get your body and mind in the habit of visiting the gym
      every week, it’s going to be hard to stop – I think that’s the BEST thing anybody could ever do… making the bodybuilding
      lifestyle permanent and not just something you do when you’re bored.

      Choose a workout routine, go to the gym 3 times a week, make simple changes to your diet – like no more soda, no more fast
      food, no more late night snacks, etc.

      I promise in 3 months you’ll physically and mentally be a different person.

  7. hi there anthony my name is fadi
    and i really love ur website.. u inspired me big time thanks to ur website i lost 50 ibs.. keep it up budd.. and keep on posting the good stuff

    good luck

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