Bodybuilding is pretty fun.
You get to lift weights like an animal, you get to eat tons of really great food, and you get to look like a Greek god.
Every man should have a gym membership, especially in this day and age where very little physical effort is required of us.
If you don’t work out, you’ll slowly turn into a fat slob.
I’ve learned many lessons from the gym.
Some of them were quick to hit me (like don’t lift more than you can handle), and others took years to realize (like the value of discipline).
Overall, bodybuilding has made me a better man, and it can do the same for you.
Here’s 10 badass bodybuilding tips I learned from my skinny to buff transformation.
1. Focus on Aesthetics
In my experience, far too many guys get focused on how much they weigh. They eat and eat and eat and struggle for YEARS to hit a certain goal body weight, and while this can be useful if you’re just getting started, after a while it becomes counterproductive.
Rather than focusing on how much you think you should weigh, focus on how you look and how you feel. Almost inevitably, guys will always look better when they’re a lean 175 than if they’re a bulky 200. Aim to be lean, mean, and a bodybuilding machine.
2. The 33/33/33 Rule
When guys first get into health/fitness, it’s very common for them to focus way too much on lifting and not enough on diet or recovery. In my experience, each of these three areas are equally important to building a lean, shredded physique that drops panties and earns respect.
33% of your physique will come from your workout routine. 33% of it will come from your diet and 33% will come from recovering properly. If you have a perfect workout routine, a perfect diet, but only sleep 3 hours a night and are constantly stressed out, you’ll barely build any muscle.
Beyond this, supplements are a bonus. So think of your “natural potential” as 100% but with supplements, you can help take it a bit farther. Add in the 4 fundamental supplements, and you’ll hit around 130%. Add in some steroids, plus everything else? You’ll hit 400%.
3. Use ACV For Natural Fat Loss
After spending years dieting, working out, and experimenting with all of the newest cutting edge tips and tricks, you tend to develop quite the arsenal of bodybuilding tools at your disposal. One of my favorite ways to shred fat fast as hell is just by adding a little apple cider vinegar to my diet.
Just by having 1 tbsp in the morning and 1 tbsp at night, you can expect to lose a few extra pounds of pure fat each month. For just taking a couple teaspoons a day of apple cider vinegar, that’s a pretty damn big improvement—and best of all if you’re a hard gainer it won’t negatively impact your gains.
Apple cider vinegar’s power comes from a compound called Acetic Acid, which has been found to suppress body fat accumulation in animal studies [R]. It’s also a wonder drug for numerous other ailments, such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure, acne, and acid reflux.
4. Don’t Neglect Cardio
It’s pretty common for gym bros and bodybuilders alike to neglect cardio, mainly because it isn’t necessary to build muscle or lose fat—although it can help. This was me for a long time, but after implementing some high intensity interval training into my routine, I saw a massive improvement.
I built muscle faster, I got leaner than I’d ever thought possible, I had more energy, and best of all, I felt absolutely incredible—the endorphin rush felt like I was on cloud 9, not to mention the testosterone and growth hormone boosting effects. My “Alpha Fat Incinerator” is based off of this, because it works.
5. Use Cold Therapy
Simply adding a cold shower to your morning routine, or post-gym routine will shoot your progress through the roof. By immersing yourself in cold water for a few minutes, you send massive signals to your body, screaming: “Release testosterone, and pump up the growth hormone!”
Alternatively, you can do something called “cryotherapy,” but places that offer this are hard to find. Cryotherapy is a revolutionary new type of cold exposure therapy, in which you’re blasted with liquid nitrogen, reaching temperatures of -200 degrees Fahrenheit. Yep, that’s right—colder than any little cold shower you could possibly find.
6. Put Free Weights First
Have you ever seen those old guys in the gym? You know the ones I’m talking about, the ones that are like 75 years old and are using the bicep curl machines for like 10 pounds? What they don’t realize is that if they just used some free weights, they’d build muscle 10x as fast.
Using free weights, such as dumbbells and barbells, trains your entire body to function as a unit. It calibrates your muscles to work with one another in conjunction, which is far more functional and realistic than any machine could ever offer. That isn’t to say machines are useless—I use them occasionally, but even so, I always prioritize free weights first.
7. Drink Enough Water
You ever see those super jacked guys walking around with gallon jugs? Yes, that’s right—the same gallon jugs that they banned in Planet Fitness? They carry those around for a reason, and that reason is to stay as hydrated as humanly possible. When you’re big, your body uses a lot of water.
Far too many men are dehydrated without even realizing it, ESPECIALLY if they work out and take supplements regularly. As a general rule, you want to be having one ounce of water per pound of lean body weight, but most guys can opt for a gallon (or a little bit less) and be just fine.
Drinking water is pretty much a magic cure to everything—your body is 70% water, after all. When you have enough water coming in, your body can run more efficiently. Headaches go away, you have more energy and focus, and those little pesky health problems that you didn’t notice before seem to improve.
8. Drink Sparingly
A lot of guys (myself included) get into bodybuilding so that they can get more girls…and believe me, you will. Yet with great power, comes great responsibility, my friends. You’ll be constantly tempted to get drunk with your buddies when you’re out at a party trying to pull some pussy, but it’s important that you do so sparingly (drink, not pull pussy).
When you drink alcohol, you literally shut your body’s muscle-reparation process down. Alcohol is a toxin, so for every single second that it’s in your bloodstream, your body prioritizes metabolizing it and getting it out, rather than building muscle. So in other words, if you have 1 drink, your body will stop muscle reparation for roughly 1 hour.
If you have 2 drinks, your body will stop muscle reparation for roughly 2 hours. If you get completely blasted (like I used to) and have 20 drinks or more, your body will literally shut down your muscle reparation process for an entire day. Now you know why most bodybuilders don’t drink, and if they do drink, they do so sparingly.
9. Still Have Fun
Being in the fitness industry for so long has taught me a lot of insider tricks, and one of them, you’ll never be able to guess. So you know how I said most bodybuilders don’t drink alcohol in the previous paragraph? Well, yeah—but what do you think they replace it with?
Drugs like marijuana, cocaine, pills, and methamphetamine are extremely common in professional bodybuilding communities. Marijuana lets you eat more to get bigger, cocaine suppresses your appetite, pain pills help you deal with joint/tendon pain, and meth gives you a crazy workout.
I certainly can’t recommend using drugs, but realize that there are alternatives to alcohol. Kratom, for example, or Phenibut both work pretty well. Adderall can be a great party drug, as well. Personally I’ll just have a zero calorie red bull when I’m out (this is my version of drinking), and maybe some cocaine (again, very sparingly).
10. Don’t Overtrain Legs
Men don’t need to have gigantic legs unless they’re bodybuilders or professional power lifters. The truth of the matter is that having gigantic, 32″ legs gets in the way of fucking everything. It becomes impossible to buy pants, your legs rub together and chafe when you walk, and it becomes damn near impossible to sit comfortably.
Instead, I recommend you train legs less frequently than your other muscles. Personally, I have modeled my Body of an Alpha routine off of this concept, and it’s worked wonders for me. I can easily find form-fitting sweat pants, khakis, and jeans at most stores, and still have girls complementing my butt and legs.
It took me years to get to where I’m currently at (that’s me in the picture up there). Contrary to a lot of popular opinions, bodybuilding is NOT a stupid man’s game—in fact, it’s quite the opposite. Bodybuilding requires an intense knowledge of biology, nutrition, and athletics in order to succeed.
Take these 10 tips and implement into your life—you’ll start to notice a difference almost immediately. Keep in mind that you will still have to custom-tailor your workout routine, diet, and recovery methods to your own specific needs, but modeling others who have had success in fitness (like myself) is a great way to get started.
Overall, bodybuilding should be something that supplements your life, rather than consumes it. Still have fun, still have hobbies, still go out and do fun stuff with friends…don’t stay in every single weekend night because you need to have your 7th meal of the day and another 35 grams of protein. Live your life while you’re still young.