Part 2 is here, and this is for those of you who are chasing muscle…
Once upon a time…
I was 15 at the time, weighing a measly 140 pounds and a complete newb to the gym. Whilst studying for our GCSE’s, my friends and I were looking for something to do outside of school. Something “cool”. Something to relieve the stress.
One of my mates suggested the gym…why not? I remember the goal at the time was to simply gain “A little bit of muscle”, whatever that meant, so I set to work, furiously competing with my mates every Friday evening on the upper body machines.
So yes, as you can see, there are already three painful mistakes *hopefully* screaming at you through the screen:
- I was only going to the gym once per week(!) I was relying on a lift home from my parents, who simply refused to do it more than once a week, as it was “Just a fad that would end soon”. Okay 😉
- I wasn’t doing legs.
- I was only using machines.
Bad, bad, bad.
This is why I normally recommend guys who are new to fitness in general to always take things slowly in the beginning. I do think that leaving yourself wanting more is a great strategy for long-term motivation, as opposed to over-phasing yourself too soon, like most do.
But anyway, there we all were, crowded around the smith-machine, bench-pressing with a whopping three-inch range of motion, loving life.
Until one day, a big, burly, tattooed up-to-the-neck dude approached us. This guy was BIG.
“Guys you need to take some weight off that bar.”
“Well, you’re not going down to your chest, so you’re doing the exercise completely wrong.”
Of course, he was completely right. As it turned out, we ended up talking to him, asking about training advice, and which split is best and all that nonsense.
Then it got interesting. Moving onto nutrition advice, he took one look at us all and said:
“GOMAD works – try drinking a gallon of milk a day, and you’ll be huge in no time.”
But what he didn’t account for were the logistical issues in regards to us kids actually performing a decent total weekly volume in the gym, and also the fact that we had sizeable natural appetites.
So, of course, I (at least) took his advice – he was a big dude after all. I drank a gallon of milk a day. I also consumed a lot of protein powder – which, as we know, is completely unnecessary. I did this for a mere six months, and guess what happened?
I had gone from fairly good-looking, and fairly chiselled, to a full-blown chubster. My cheeks resembled those of a hamster, and my gut was permanently bloated, and no, I am not intolerant of milk in any way, shape, or form – never have been.
I had gone from being confident naked to feeling embarrassed. But I was bulking, so this was ok, right?
GOMAD makes you fat. Unless you have suffered with a poor appetite your entire life, GOMAD is a terrible idea, so only use it as a last resort.
On a side-note: Don’t take advice from randomers in the gym. They don’t know all the variables, and tend to operate from a very binary (black or white) level of thinking.
On top of the appetite issue, the only time GOMAD will actually work, is if you are performing a high volume workload per week. You need to be really pushing it in the gym for those calories to be used for anything other than fat gain.
This means you need to be able to get at least three, high-volume sessions in every single week. They have to be high volume to avoid fat gain, because cardio is a terrible idea if you are a skinny dude who is seriously in need of some mass.
This means you also need to be very committed to the gym, and don’t skip sessions just because your mates aren’t available (younger guys I’m looking at you!)
GOMAD only works if you satisfy all of these conditions. Think long and hard before you try it. Force-feeding doesn’t enhance gains, so only try this strategy if you really do hate food.