Friday, December 28, 2007

Five Muscle Building Tips

-- Don't exceed 5-6 reps on most of your warm up sets. Your first set could consist of a very light weight for 10-20 reps just to get loosened up and get the blood flowing but beyond that you want to keep the reps low. The reason for this is that you don't want to build up too much lactic acid or accumulate too much fatigue with your warm ups.

-- Don't stretch before your workout in the hopes of preventing injury. This doesn't work. The only benefit of stretching before a workout is to help you get into positions you might not be able to reach (such as a full squat) because you are tight in specific areas (such as the hamstrings and hip flexors). But stretching for the sake of injury prevention is an outdated idea and doesn't really work.

-- Don't over-analyze and over-think everything you do in the gym. This never gets you anywhere. Don't worry if the incline of the bench is supposed to be 50 degrees or 55 degrees. Don't worry that if you don't supinate at exactly the right time that you won't activate your biceps optimally. Don't stress out about the exact grip width on the bar. If someone tells you that a 16" grip on the bench press hits your triceps better than anything else, but because of an injury or anatomical difference you can only comfortably use an 18" grip, don't sweat it. People over-think themselves to death and they never get anywhere because of it. Go to the gym, get stronger, go home, eat, sleep and repeat. Don't turn it into advanced calculus. That is one of the best muscle building tips I can give you.

-- Always train both sides of the joint with equal volume. Therefore if you do six sets per week of pressing exercises you need to do six sets per week of pulling exercises. If you do two sets of curls you should do two sets of triceps work. And so on and so on...

-- If you can't get your forearms to grow, try hitting them with more frequency than other muscle groups. They can easily be trained three times per week and recover without any problem. Also, try to hold the bottom stretched position of wrist curls for 3-5 seconds per rep. When you finish training the forearms, hit them with a deep stretch for both the extensors and flexors for 30-60 seconds. These muscle building tips should get the forearms to grow.



For more muscle building tips please visit

Monday, December 24, 2007

Happy Holidays

I just wanted to take a second to wish everyone a very happy & healthy holiday season. Thanks for all your support this year, I really appreciate it. I hope you have a great one.

Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays,

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Monday, December 17, 2007

How to Build an Impressive Chest

Question: I have heard that the bench press is a crappy chest exercise. Is this true? If it sucks, what’s better?

Answer: The bench press is a great exercise. If you bench properly, there will be minimal pectoral involvement, however. The triceps and front delts will do most of the work. This is individual and is based on your strengths and weaknesses, but for the most part, your chest will not be doing the majority of the work when you bench press.

Trying to make the bench press target the pecs more by bringing your elbows out wide and lowering the bar up higher on your chest (the way that bodybuilding magazines typically show you how to do it) is a shoulder injury waiting to happen, so that’s not an option to even consider. I did these many years ago for a few months before I knew any better and my shoulder has never been the same since. Don't make the same mistakes that I did.

Even though the pecs do not do the majority of work during the bench press I still think it's is a tremendous, if somewhat overused, mass builder for the whole upper body. If you have shoulder issues, however, it should be avoided at all costs, but for everyone else it is one of the great upper-body exercises.

Equally as effective, if not more so, is the dumbbell bench press. The dumbbells allow a more natural range of motion and are much safer. These can be done on a flat bench or an incline bench. The dumbbells also give you the option of pressing with your palms facing down toward your feet (pronated) as they do when you press with a bar or with your palms facing each other, in toward your body. The latter variety places less stress on your shoulders but if you are healthy you could probably use both varieties.

Finally, pushups of all varieties will always remain among my top chest builders. My favorites are weighted blast-strap (blast straps are available at pushups with the straps set about five feet apart from each other. The function of the pecs is to draw the arms across the midline of the body. By setting the straps far apart from each other, you make the pecs function in this way as you press/pull yourself back up from the bottom position. You have to do it and feel it to appreciate what I’m talking about, but I don’t think you will find a better chest exercise than this. If, like Frank Rizzo of the Jerky Boys, you have a chest like a wet blanket, then I highly recommend you give this exercise a try.


For more highly effective mass building exercises visit

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Quick Tip of the Day

Drink more water. Not only is it healthy and not only does it keep all systems running effectively but it also helps store carbohydrates more efficiently. A lack of water can also decrease performance. If you are slightly dehydrated you will automatically be weaker.

Dehdration can also lead to catabolism.


Say what?

That's right, my friends, dehydration can lead to muscle catabolism (muscle loss). More people are dehydrated than know it. If your urine isn't clear there is a good chance that you are not optimally hyrated. And if you are not hydrated then you could be getting smaller and weaker.

Now stop staring at Jessica Biel's ass and go drink some water.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

A Supplement That Actually Does Something

Today's post is stolen from my good friend Keith Scott of

I agree 100% with what he said and wanted to share it with you in case you have been living under a rock and haven't started taking fish oil yet.

The INCREDIBLE Benefits of Fish Oil
By Keith Scott

If you don’t supplement with fish oil then you are missing out on one of the best researched, most effective and important supplements on the market. Before I start with the benefits, a quick explanation of what fish oil is might help to start this off in the right direction.

Fish oil is derived mostly from the fatty tissues of cold water, fatty fish such as mackerel, herring, trout, sardines, and albacore tuna. Fish oil is considered an essential fatty acid (EFA) and contains mostly the omega 3 fatty acid.

With each day that goes by, there seems to be more and more research out there claiming another great benefit of supplementing with fish oil. To summarize the gist of what has been written and research in a few words; this stuff is pretty amazing!

Reported Benefits of Supplementing with Fish Oil:

• Fat Loss and improved body composition – Research has shown that fish oil seems to turn on the body’s fat burning mechanism and even better, it was shown that most of the fat loss was in the abdominal region. Yes, your belly fat!

• Fights Inflammation – reduces the inflammation causing substances in the body. Inflammation will kill you eventually. It wreaks havoc on your body and long term health. Not to mention it is responsible for painful conditions around the body. Fish oil can help with muscle soreness and joint pain

• Improves cardiovascular health –Fish oil lowers triglycerides, reduces the likely hood of blood clots, can lower high blood pressure & reduces the chance of stroke.

• Mental Health – Fish oil has been reported to reduce depression, and elevate the mood. It was even found that fish oil supplementation in children with ADHD dramatically improved their symptoms and in some children, allowed them to get off of all medication for the disorder.

• Healthy Eyes - Fish Oil fights Macular Degeneration, Glaucoma and dry-eye syndrome
• Boosts the immune system

• Can increase sex drive

• Helps with menstrual pain

• Improves digestion

• Fights Osteoporosis

• Helps to prevent cancer

• Lowers the risk of developing Alzheimer’s Disease

• Helps with Asthma

• Helps with Multiple Sclerosis symptoms

• Helps with skin problems – Eczema, and psoriasis

• Helps with Diabetes

• Can lower stress

• Reduces headaches

• Helps with Fibromyaglia

Personally, I have been taking it for over 2 years and have noticed amazing changes. I feel better day to day with less muscular pain and joint pain…even after lifting heavy weights. I also seem to handle stress better, and am usually in a good mood.
The evidence is there. Do your own research if you must, but in my opinion, this supplement is a must for everyone.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Questions & Answers

Question: I've read that stretching before your workout lowers your power for about
15mins after the stretch, which is the bulk of the lifting session. Is that
true? If so, should I be stretching at all before my workouts? Thanks!

-SSgt Carol L. Miller Jr.

Answer: Carol, it is debatable how long this negative effect lasts. I don't recommend stretching statically before training unless you absolutely need to in order for you to get into certain positions. This means that if you have chronically tight hips and can't squat properly without hitting a few static stretches before then by all means do so. If you do this, try not to hold the stretches for longer than ten seconds and then repeat as many times as needed. Also, after holding the static stretch be sure to briefly contract the muscle for a second or two. Doing this seems to prevent some of the negative effects. A better option would be dynamic or PNF stretching where you stretch the muscle against resistance. PNF stretching is also known as the contract/relax method.

If you don't need to stretch before training then definitely don't. It does nothing to improve performance or prevent injury.

Question: i have been onto a lot of sites and now receive a lot of emails from people telling me tips and pointers.

Firstly i must say ur the most helpful, but i have read something you said am not exactly sure what to beleive.

You said that all supplements are a waste of money and that they dont work,
But there is the guy i still know to this day i went to school with him he is using a supplement im not exactly sure what brand but i think it is creatine when we went to school together he was tiny and i havent seen him for a while but we have the same friends, also i have seen photos.

He is now bench pressing 140 kg he is dedicated but he says that the product he uses works , just wanting to no what you think also i would like to read anything that you could send me that could help me THANKS ALOT
P.s this guy is HUge
Kade Allen

Answer: Kade, just because a guy built a significant amount of muscle in the years since you have seen him doesn't meant that creatine is solely responsible for his progress. He could have been training hard and eating right and made great gains from doing that. Having said that, I will say that creatine is one of the few decent supplements out there but it is not the miracle pill people expect. If you have trained properly with a great nutrition and recovery program for at least two years, then by all means give creatine a shot. Just don't expect mind blowing results.

I had no idea that plastics had such big an impact on the estrogen levels on its own. While I avoid plastic bottled water, I still eat out of Tupperware container (doing it right now in fact. I know. Bad weightlifter!). But I was wondering if it matters, if the content of the Tupperware container is heated or not. Do the plastics damage the food, even though you don't heat the food? If yes, is the food significantly less damaged or is all the same?

Second question, regarding column #2...
Does this mean, that the more chewing motions you make during and AFTER a meal, even though you are DONE chewing the food, the better the nutrient absorption and thermic effect of the meal?

Thanks for your time, in advance.
Jeppe Jakobsen

Answer: Jeppe, yes, eating out of tupperware or any kind of plastic containers does have a negative effect on estrogen levels, whether it is heated or not. Now, how great is this effect? I don't know for sure. I also know that it is difficult or nearly impossible to avoid plastics completely but I do think that it's a good idea to avoid any increases in estrogen as much as possible, no matter how small it may be.

I wouldn't get overly concerned about the chewing afterwards but just try to be conscious of chewing your food as much and as well as possible. It has been suggested that 50 chews per mouthful of food should be the number to shoot for.


PS: Looking for some great reading info during your Christmas break? Pick of your copy of Muscle Gaining Secrets today by clicking HERE now.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Rear Delt Training?

It never fails to make me laugh when I see 136 pound guys in the gym training their rear delts. Does anyone know how ridiculous this? If you have been training for a number of years and have gained at least 40-50lbs of muscle and added at least 200+ lbs to your deadlift then you can start to think about to add in some rear delt training on occasion. Maybe not do it, but think about it.

Here is the real secret rear delt/ rhomboid/ upper back exercise that will pack more meat on those muscles than any other...

The deadlift.

If you start with a 225 pound deadlift today and increase that over the next few years to a 500 pound deadlift I can guarantee you that your rear delts, rhomboids, lower and upper traps will be enormous... or at least far bigger than they are right now.

Do you really think a bent over lateral raise with 20lb dumbbells is going to do more than a 500 pound deadlift? Not a shot in hell.

So until you have met the qualifications I listed above (or are injured), I suggest that you ditch the bent over laterals, the y-raises, the scarecrows, the band pull aparts and all that other stuff and stick with heavy deads for a few years. Once you add a couple hundred pounds to that exercise you can add in the above exercises if you still want to. But not before then.


Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Quick Tips to Build Muscle & Burn Fat

-- Avoid plastics as much as possible. Drinking out of plastic bottles and eating out of tupperware containers has been shown to increase your estrogen. More estrogen equals less muscle and more fat.

-- If you drink protein or meal replacement shakes be sure not to blend them up too thin. Ideally you want them to be thick enough that you have to chew them. Chewing stimulates the production of certain digestive enzymes which are released in your saliva and help you breakdown and process food more efficiently. If one twin drank ten cans of soda per day and then other had an equal amount of sugar from fat free cake, the twin who drank the soda would be fatter at the end of 12 weeks. Chewing your food is that important. Not to mention the fact that your body doesn't burn as many calories during the digestion process when you consume fluids because they are so easily digested. So to at least try to combat this, make your shakes a bit on the thicker side or at the very least "chew" them down.

-- Hold the bottom stretched position on calf raises for at least two seconds on every rep of every set you do. The calves respond greatly to loaded stretching. Anywhere from 2-15 second pauses at the bottom can be used for great results.

-- Be sure to do as many reps for the forearm extensors as you do for the forearm flexors if you want to avoid elbow issues. More exercises (bent over rows, barbell curls) and motions in life (throwing a baseball, swinging a golf club) have you in forearm flexion than in foreamr extension. You need to balance this out to prevent problems.

-- If you do have elbow problems (tennis elbow) try getting a few strong rubber bands or the Expand Your Hand Bands from IronMind and open your fingers up against the resistance. Do this for a couple sets of ten to twenty reps every day for a few weeks and see if it doesn't help. It should.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Is a Pump Needed to Build Muscle?

Who could ever forget that famous line from Pumping Iron where Arnold said that getting a good pump was better than coming?

We all laughed, although some of us harder than others, because deep down we agreed with what he said. But after all these years, the question still remains- is a good pump a defining component of a productive muscle building workout. Is it really that important?

Some people emphatically state that getting a good pump is necessary if you want to build muscle. There are no studies that show this to be true, but real world evidence shows that there is something to getting a good pump. First of all, the ability to easily obtain a good pump is a sign that your body is in an anabolic state and ready to train. It shows us that the body and the cells are well hydrated and ready to grow.

Some days, you go to the gym and can’t get a pump no matter what you do. Those are days that you probably shouldn’t even be training. Your body is telling you
something, and that something is that you are not in an anabolic state, probably not fully recovered, and you are not ready to train. In other words you will not be building muscle on that day.

As far as the pump having an anabolic effect, this is debatable, but most bodybuilders swear that there is something to it. When you get a good pump, you are
delivering tons of nutrient-rich blood to the muscles that will greatly increase amino-acid uptake. Theoretically, this should result in a greater anabolic effect.

The kind of training that stimulates a good pump causes sarcoplasmic and mitochondrial hypertrophy. This is the kind of hypertrophy which is lost very quickly when you stop training. It is completely different from myofibrillar hypertrophy, which comes from heavy training and lasts much longer. However, sarcoplasmic and mitochondrial hypertrophy is necessary if you want to be as big as humanly possible.

So, while it isn’t proven by science, there is probably something to gain from getting a good pump. Having said that, I definitely wouldn’t make it the focus of your workout. Chasing the pump and disregarding all of the principles of
effective training is one of the biggest mistakes you can make and will do nothing to help you build lean muscle.

You can get a great pump from doing 50 pushups but everyone knows that’s not going to build muscle. Just mindlessly pursuing a pump will get you nowhere and may even cause losses in size and strength. However, after you have done the bulk of your workout you can always finish with a backoff set, a rest/pause set or even an occasional drop set to maximize your pump and thus maximize your body's muscle building potential.

For example, on your chest workout you could do a couple heavy sets on the bench press for 5-6 reps and then finish with one higher rep set of 8-12 on dips to get a great pump. If you do this you hit a variety of muscle fibers and target both types of hypertrophy. That way you get the best of both worlds.

Remember, it isn’t necessary and should never be the focus of your workouts (heavy training should) but getting a good pump tells you that you’re ready to build muscle and can even maximize your potential to do so.


Maximize your ability to build muscle faster at

“By utilizing all the training and nutrition principles that Jason teaches in Muscle Gaining Secrets, I have gone from 170 pounds to 250 pounds while squatting over 500 pounds and dead lifting close to 600 pounds.”
Todd Coker
Fort Lauderdale, Florida

“Jason Ferruggia has given the gift of strength and performance to thousands of athletes in his career through his coaching and writing. Jay has a unique ability to explain complicated information in a way that everyone can understand, regardless of their level of experience. Raw beginners to seasoned coaches will all benefit from his expertise that he shares in Muscle Gaining Secrets.”
CJ Murphy, MFS

“I went from 130 pounds to 220 pounds while working with Jason and using all of the methods he teaches in Muscle Gaining Secrets. There is no better muscle building system on the planet.”
Mike Schwalb
Team Captain, Gettysburg College Football

“I am living proof of someone with average genetics that has overachieved physically from using Jay’s training philosophies. I never used any illegal supplements or took any miracle pills but I went from 150 pounds to 190 pounds of solid, lean muscle mass by doing exactly what Jay told me to do. I would recommend Muscle Gaining Secrets to anyone looking to get incredibly big and strong.”
Ryan Mang
Hoboken, New Jersey

“Jay’s training methods got me in the best shape of my life in just three months. I lost 17 pounds of body-fat and gained 26 pounds of muscle. People told me repeatedly that I could have won a natural bodybuilding contest with just a few weeks of strict dieting if I wanted to. When it comes to building muscle and getting ripped, nobody knows more than Jay. Muscle Gaining Secrets is the ultimate guide for anyone looking to get in mind blowing shape.”
Joe Cuervo
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Thursday, November 29, 2007

"I Don't Have Time to Train"

Many times I hear this excuse from people who do absolutely no exercise at all. They say they have no time to train. They feel and look terrible yet they have no intentions of doing anything about it.

I was at the park doing some sprints a few days ago and saw a guy there pushing his kids on the swings. When they got off the swings and went to play on something else the guy, in his mid forties, went over to the chin up bar and attempted to do a single rep.

He couldn't even get half way up!

A grown man who couldn't do a single chin up...What a disgrace. The sad thing is that I have seen this exact scenario at least a dozen times at the park.

How can you even consider yourself a man? What would you do if you ever had to defend or protect your wife or kids?

How can you look yourself in the mirror and live with yourself if you are in that kind of shape and that pathetically weak?

The excuse of not having enough time is a lame one. No matter how much you work and how many responsibilities you have, there is always time to exercise.

The problem is that most people think an efficient workout has to last an hour or two. This is complete BS. Often times I will train for no more than 20-30 minutes on a very busy day. If you can honestly tell me that you don't have 20-30 minutes per day for exercise, you need to take a serious look at your life and your priorities.

An efficient strength training workout can be accomplished with as few as two or three exercises and be completed in as little as twenty minutes. Just by making time each day to do that small amount of exercise, you will feel ten times better.

The workouts in Muscle Gaining Secrets all average about 35 minutes but if you are pressed for time they can be shortened to meet your schedule.

Don't think that if you don't have at least 4-6 hours a week, it's worthless to do anything at all. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Better results in less time ==>

"Raw and uncut. That is how Jay Ferruggia brings it. If you're looking for another '3 sets of 10, eat chicken breasts and yams, how-to-be-a-fitness-model' program, then forget about getting it from Jay. From his politically-incorrect no-BS eating program, to his workout routines that he's used with hundreds of athletes, powerlifters, and strongmen, Ferruggia truly is relentless when it comes to putting together the ultimate muscle building program. And I'm no armchair quarterback when it comes to Jay's workout advice. Jay is the coach that finally got me to smarten up and train right. As a result, I'm stronger, less tired, less beat up between workouts, and my workouts are of the highest quality. This is the only muscle-building program out there that will give you the results you've been after forever, while making you laugh, and firing you up like never before, all at once. Get it, or get left behind again, just like you were last year."
-Craig Ballantyne, CSCS, MS
Strength Coach, Toronto, Canada
Author, Turbulence Training

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Brand New FREE Muscle Building Report (fixed link)

I just finished writing my new free report entitled Mass Building Sins: The Top 20 Mistakes That Kill Your Muscle Gains... & How to Avoid Them and it's now available to you at no charge.

That's right, it's absolutely free.

Click HERE to download your copy right now.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Another Muscle Gaining Success

“I have been trying to gain muscle all my life. It is probably one of the hardest things I or, for that matter, anyone has tried to do naturally. It’s frustrating, time consuming, and with so many people telling you so many different things downright impossible to know what is the most effective way to build muscle without the harmful use of steroids. However, I have come across a program called Muscle Gaining Secrets that truly is geared toward the hard-gainer, the guy that is dedicated and has tried everything he can to build muscle with little success and tons of sweat and tears.

The best thing about this program is that its founder, Jason Ferruggia, is an expert in the field with over 20 years of experience and countless clients to his credit who have achieved outstanding results. It was extremely important to me that the person giving me this information had a strong background in the field of exercise science and knew how the body worked, versus some guy who claimed to be a hard-gainer and put on 50 pounds of muscle if you just used his system. Jay Ferruggia is highly respected in the fitness industry and has put together a program that if followed correctly will be the one training program that you absolutely have to have if you have ever struggled to make muscle gains in the gym.

One of the more interesting aspects of the program is Jay's no-nonsense approach and his blatant honesty about the multi-billion dollar supplement industry and how they are literally robbing you blind. It has so much more to do with what you are doing in the gym and proper nutrition and Jay will show you how to achieve the results that you have always unsuccessfully tried to achieve over the years.

The muscle gaining secrets that you will find in Jay Ferruggia's program are second to none. These are client tested training and nutritional techniques that have literally transformed people to muscle gains they never thought possible without steroids. Jay himself gained 84 pounds of muscle after discovering and utilizing the techniques in this program.

Jay will unlock your own body's true potential using science and careful planning. I truly love this program and would like to personally thank Jay Ferruggia for making this system available to all of us hard-gainers. This is the best system I have ever used and will highly recommend it to all my friends and co-workers because it actually works.”

Less time, better results ===>

Monday, November 19, 2007

Let The Mass Building Season Begin

This Thursday officially kicks off the holiday season here in the US. To muscle heads, that also signifies the beginning of the mass building season. Starting three days from today and continuing all the way up until January 1st, you will eat more calories than you do during any other time of year. You can try to fight it but it’s inevitable. So why not embrace it?

This is not the time to be trying to get lean. On the contrary, my friends, it’s time to get huge! You will spend a large majority of the next six weeks in a caloric surplus which means you had better be training accordingly and asking for some bigger clothes for Christmas.

While you want to take advantage of all the extra calories and use them to build some new muscle you also don’t want to end up a fat slob come New Years Day. You can avoid this by planning your workouts accordingly and using strategically planned cardio workouts to keep your waistline in control.

If you can do it, I always recommend planning your workouts so that they fall on the days when you are going to be eating the most. It’s always a good idea to follow up the weight training workout with cardio that day as well. This will help ensure that a large portion of the calories are sucked up by the muscles and stored as glycogen and will be used to build muscle instead of stored as bodyfat.

Another way to counteract all of the over eating that could lead to bodyfat accumulation is to try to never consume massive amounts of calories more than two days in a row. You can get away with two days of chowing down like a ravenous animal but anymore than that will definitely lead to fat gain.

If you plan accordingly and eat a lower calorie, lower carb diet for a few days before a big feast like Thanksgiving day, (basically depleting your glycogen stores) you will be even less likely to get fat from all of the excess calories. This is similar to carb depleting and loading that bodybuilders do before a big show (although less extreme and nowhere near as scientific). When you are in a depleted state like that you will be even more likely to use the excess calories to build muscle and less likely to store bodyfat.

My advice would be to lift weights on Thanksgiving morning followed by 30 minutes of cardio before the big feast. If your gym is closed and you have no other options, I would definitely recommend going out and doing some sprints, sled drags, car pushes or even a bodyweight circuit. Just as long as you do something to prepare your body to use the excess calories more effectively that day.

Remember, the next six weeks could be the time when you build more muscle than you will at any other time this year. Make sure you are well prepared and have it all planned out so that you enter the new year bigger and better than ever before.

For a detailed workout plan to follow this holiday/mass building season, go to now.

“Have you ever wondered why you can't put on any muscle? You have probably tried every supplement known to man, read every muscle magazine there is, and spent countless hours in the gym. All the answers that you need can be found in Muscle Gaining Secrets by Jason Ferruggia.”
Jimmy LaMour
Performance Enhancement Coach

“Jason gives you the best no BS advice on Muscle Mass available today. (This is not your typical bodybuilding junk).”
Jerry Hill
Fitness Expert

“I have read Jason's new e-book and I must say that every hardcore trainee, beginner through advanced, and trainers should do the same. It can save the beginner or intermediate trainee years of frustration and even may give the advanced trainee and fitness professional some new ideas or insights in training. Jason goes through it all, from how to structure your training split depending on your training age and fitness and athletic goals, to selecting repetitions and sets, to manipulating volume, frequency, and intensity, and even to weekly, monthly, and yearly planning.

Having bought several of Jason's products, receiving a phone consultation from him, and casually conversing with him from time to time, I can say he is a truly generous sincere, knowledgeable person who loves spreading his wealth of information with others. So put down that newsstand bodybuilding magazine filled with ghost written stories of juiced to the gills lifters doing a 100 sets per bodypart and consuming 10,000 kcal per day. Pick up a copy of this book and start learning how to "really" train and eat for the fitness goals you always wanted to achieve!”

Queens, NY

Saturday, November 17, 2007

The Hardgainer Mindset

Nothing pisses me off more than skinny guys (aka so called hardgainers) who complain about their inability to gain weight.

“Waaaaa (said in a whining baby voice ala Artie Lang and Howard Stern), I have a really fast metabolism.”

“Waaaaa, it’s harder for me than most people to gain weight.”

“Waaaaa, I don’t have the appetite to eat that much.”

“Waaaaa, I have terrible genetics.”

“Waaaaa, I don’t have time to eat that much.”

“Waaaaa, I have tried everything and still can’t get bigger.”

“Waaaaa, I’m a hardgainer.”

You know what I say to people who make those excuses?

Give up.


It’s hopeless.

You are a hardgainer and you will never succeed.

Stop going to the gym today and never even think about picking up a weight again.

End your misery now and start something else because I promise you that you will never get bigger.

There’s not a shot in hell… and that’s the honest truth.

You know why you will never get bigger and stronger?

Because you don’t have the heart or the balls to do it. It’s that simple. And the sooner you realize it the sooner you can move on and start doing something more productive with your time.

Just like every other hardgainer who uses their genetics as an excuse, you are a weak, lazy chump.

And you make me sick.

I graduated high school weighing all of 147 pounds at six feet tall. Eventually I got up to 231 pounds through proper training and eating and an undying dedication to achieving my goal.

I trained as hard as I could and ate when I didn’t want to, when it wasn’t convenient and when I wasn’t hungry.

I went to sleep early on nights I wanted to be out drinking and partying.

I did whatever I had to do to achieve my goals and refused to believe that my crappy genetics and hardgainer label would hold me back.

Somewhere along the path I came down with tuberculosis and nearly died. I spent a few weeks in the hospital and six months on bed rest. I was on medication for a year and when I returned to the gym could only bench press the bar.

But I didn’t let that stop me and picked up right where I left off.

Over my fourteen years in the industry I have seen numerous people achieve the same kind of results time and time again. Many, far more impressive than mine.

My client and friend, Mike Schwalb gained 100 pounds of muscle in the time he trained with me. I witnessed Mike force down many a meal and come in to train on nights when his friends were out having fun. He didn’t let the hardgainer label hold him back.

Another good friend, client and former training partner of mine named Todd Coker gained over 120 pounds during the time he trained with me, going from somewhere around 130 pounds to over 250.

My friend Jim Wendler has less than God like genetics and even had a serious disease which he overcame to go to squat 1000 pounds in competition and a body weight of over 280 pounds.

Jim’s teammate and friend Matt Rhodes went from 220 pounds at 6’4” to 313 pounds within the course of two years because of his incredible commitment to eating and training. I had dinner with Matt a few weeks ago and personally watched him force feed himself long after he was full. In fact we all laughed as the sweat dripped down his head while he choked down another bite of chicken. That’s dedication.

I could literally list dozens and dozens of examples of people I know personally (let alone the thousands of people who overcame crappy genetics that I don’t know) but I think you get the point.

You know what those people all had in common?

Drive, desire, dedication and an iron will and commitment to excellence.

That had heart and they had balls.

They never succumbed to the hardgainer mindset.

And most importantly, they never made excuses.

Do you?


If you are ready to shed the hardgainer mindset and find out what really helps skinny guys build muscle fast, go to right now.

PS. That's my little bro in the pic above. He's trained with me since he was a kid and did everything I told him to do. Seeing him today at 238 pounds makes it hard to believe he was once the skinniest kid in his high school class. That's what happens when you train properly, work your ass off and make no excuses.

Friday, November 16, 2007

The Big Seminar Recap

Unlike my last trip to Boston a few years earlier, this one would prove to be easy and painless. As I approached the exit, I called CJ Murphy on his cell phone for directions. He mentioned three rotaries. I’m from New Jersey so I wondered, “What the f*ck is a rotary?” I finally figured it out and arrived at the new home of Total Performance Sports a few minutes later. I walked in to hear the sounds of weights clanging, men 100 pounds bigger than me yelling and screaming, and heavy metal blasting. I felt right at home.

After saying my hellos, I went to grab some food with my good buddies, Jim “Smitty” Smith from the Diesel Crew and Alwyn Cosgrove. At dinner I told Smitty that I had hit 765 lbs on the power squat on Wednesday and was pretty happy with that because my leg training had been very haphazard over the last few months. I felt like my strength was starting to come back.

“That’s pretty good,” he said.

“Is it?” I asked, hoping to get his approval of my lower body strength.

“Not really. I’m just trying to make you feel better.”

“Right, that’s what I figured. Thanks buddy.”

When we returned, Matt Rhodes was squatting somewhere in the neighborhood of a million pounds, under the watchful eye of Jim Wendler and Dave Tate. Suddenly my power squat seemed even more pathetic.

Across the room, Vincent Dizenzo was benching somewhere around the same weight. It was all very impressive and motivating to say the least. Even though I had only slept a combined total of seven hours in the previous two nights and had barely eaten all day on the ride up, I was extremely motivated by my surroundings and had to move some weight.

Smitty and I trained together and worked up to 130s on dumbbell floor presses and one arm rows. I beat him on the floor presses and he did 21 reps to my 20 on the rows. Under most circumstances, I would think that I did pretty well in the gym that day and would have been happy with myself. I can routinely walk into most public gyms and out lift just about everyone, including guys who outweigh me by fifty pounds. However, that’s not really the least bit of an impressive feat.

It’s not until you see and surround yourself with guys who are truly strong that you will ever get truly strong. Even if you can only do it on occasion, you need to get out of your comfort zone and train with guys who are far stronger than you. In fact, whenever I spend time with Dave or Jim, I always come home and make better strength gains in the next month than I had in the previous three because my whole idea of what is strong has been renewed. I realize just how far I have to go.

After training on Friday night, we all went to dinner where, among other things, I learned that there are internet forums filled with guys who hate me, Alwyn, and anyone else who is successful in this business. Although it’s sad to think about people having such a lack of fulfillment and success in their own lives, it did give me great pleasure and cause Alwyn much frustration to learn that I receive more attention than he does on some of these boards.

“How the f*ck are you getting more hatred than me? I’m pissed!”

Apparently these incredibly successful, super strong, jacked up forum posters also have problems with Jim Wendler and James Smith. However, according to at least one source, they like to discuss their disdain for me the most. For that I must thank them and say that I truly appreciate how much attention they pay to what I say. It means a lot to me.

After a great night of story telling and drinking beer, we headed back to the hotel to get ready for the Big Seminar the next morning. But first we made a pit stop at the bar for a few more beers and stories. It was here that I had the pleasure of talking to Rhodes and Vinny for the first time that night. I also learned that apparently they don’t serve more than one beer per person in Boston…or something like that. That’s wicked retahded.

After about an hour or so of hilarious stories provided by Dave, Rhodes, and Vinny, I decided that it was time to head up to my room and get ready for the morning.

The Seminar

Because I participated in the seminar, I won’t be giving a fully detailed review. I will say that Cosgrove, Wendler, and Murph are three of the guys in this entire industry that I would go to first for training and business advice, and I think they proved exactly why. Whenever I hear any of these three speak, I always learn something. This weekend proved to be no different.

There was a great group of attendees, and it was a pleasure to meet each and every one of them. Hopefully, they all got everything out of the seminar that they were hoping for. Personally, I think watching any of those three guys speak or coach is worth the price of admission alone, especially when Jim gets fired up and starts yelling and cursing. There’s not much better than that.

Jim is fond of saying that you will never learn a ton at a seminar and that all the real knowledge comes from training and experience. I agree 100 percent, but I also know that just being around certain individuals, especially those who are stronger and more experienced and/or more successful than you, can teach you quite a bit and really improve your training or business.

This weekend was the first time that I had the pleasure of meeting Vincent Dizenzo, who is an 800-lb bench presser and absolutely enormous by the way. I must say that not only is he an incredibly nice, smart, and funny individual, but he taught me a lot whether he knows it or not. Just being with people like that rubs off on you and motivates you to be better at what you do whether it’s your hobby, job, or whatever. I had several conversations with Vinny over the weekend, and while I was usually laughing my ass off at one of his stories, I was also incredibly impressed with him and that only served to motivate me.

Many times powerlifters are stereotyped as people who never listen to anything that anyone weaker and smaller than them has to say about anything. However, Vinny told Alwyn and me that he learned a lot from listening to us speak about business. He later told Alwyn how much he respects all the hard work that Alwyn has put into his business and all the training knowledge he has acquired over the years. That meant a lot to Alwyn and to me and shows what kind of person Vinny is.

We all can, and should, learn from each other. It’s how you get better at everything you do. And we should all be constantly striving to get better in every aspect of our life. If you aren’t progressing, you’re regressing. There can be no standing still.

One of the attendees summed it up perfectly at the end of the day Saturday. As an outsider to the whole thing and having met all those guys for the first time this weekend, he explained how he thought it was incredibly cool to see a bunch of guys who are so different and have many different areas of expertise yet are so similar. He said that he had learned something different from each speaker but also saw the underlying similarities among all of us. People always want to look for the differences between training programs and coaches and what successful people do. In reality, they should look for the similarities.

Jim explained this during his presentation, and I believe he really hit the nail on the head. Don’t look at what the top lifters in the world do differently because there are, in fact, numerous differences. Instead, look at what they all have in common. This applies to every aspect of your life that you’re trying to improve.

Hopefully, everyone in attendance learned something from each of the speakers and realized that while their approaches to training or business may differ slightly, it’s really their similarities and the common characteristics they share that really matter in the end.

Thanks again to all the attendees and to CJ Murphy for being such a great host.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

More For Your Eardrums

What is it about the owners of public gyms that makes them think that people want to listen to... TECHNO when they train? How does techno equal training music? I don't get it. Am I the only who is bewildered by this phenomenon? Who gets fired up to lift heavy weights to this crap? Isn't this what guidos in wife beaters pump their fists to in clubs at 4am? Or did that fad die in the 90's? I don't know, but I do that Eminem was right when he said (in Without Me) "Nobody listen to techno!"

So public gym owners everywhere, I beg you, please stop.

With that being said, here is a list of top 25 songs to train to. It was nearly impossible to narrow it down to less than 50 and I will probably be constantly changing my mind about the list but this is what I have right now. Hopefully you will find a few songs on there that you don't have and can add to your training mixes.

1. Raining Blood- Slayer (Still number one in my book)
2. Loyalty- D12 featuring Eminem & Obie Trice (this song played at least 5 times per day in my gym for about two years straight)
3. The Fight Song- Marilyn Manson
4. Irresponsible Hate Anthem- Marilyn Manson (Lots of anger and screaming)
5. Lost at Birth- Public Enemy (A rare and unknown PE song that kicks ass)
6. Killing In The Name Of- Rage Against The Machine (RATM)("Fuck you I won't do what you tell," me still gets me fired up)
7. Straight Outta Compton- NWA
8. 100 Miles & Running- NWA
9. Angel Below- Underoath
10. Sleep Now in the Fire- RATM
11. Bring Tha Noize (Remix)- Public Enemy & Anthrax
12. F*ck Your Enemy- Superjoint Ritual
13. Blood- Pearl Jam
14. The N**** You Love To Hate- Ice Cube
15. The Better of Two Evils- Marilyn Manson
16. Welcome to the Terrordome- Public Enemy
17. Vietnow- RATM
18. Rabbit Run- Eminem
19. Remember The Name- Fort Minor
20. Bleed It Out- Linkin Park
21. The Beautiful People- Marilyn Manson
22. Make a Move- DMX (Chuck Liddells entrance song. If it's good enough for Chuck, it's good enough for me)
23. The Source- Eminem
24. Lukin- Pearl Jam
25. 99 Problems/ One Step Closer- Jay Z & Linkin Park

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Top Ten Albums To Train To

A good friend of mine asked me yesterday what my top ten albums to train to were. After much thought and deliberation, here is what I came up with. Note that live albums and greatest hits were not allowed; strictly studio albums. Although it is blasphemous to mention their name in public and usually results in your being labeled a douchebag, and Fred Durst was the worst excuse for a rapper ever, Limp Bizkit did make some pretty good music to train to for a couple years there.

1) Rage Against The Machine- Rage Against The Machine
2) Rage Against The Machine- The Battle of Los Angeles
3) Rage Against The Machine- Evil Empire
4) Public Enemy- It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back (greatest rap album of all time)
5) Slayer- Reign in Blood
6) NWA- Straight Outta Compton
7) Metallica- Garage Inc. (disk 2)
8) Limp Bizkit- Chocolate Starfish & The Hotdog Flavored Water
9) Marilyn Manson- Antichrist Superstar
10) Metallica- ...And Justice For All (when Metallica was Metallica)


Monday, November 12, 2007

What's the ONLY Way to Get Faster

Today, we have a guest post from my buddies Patrick & Latif of

On a daily basis I receive emails from newsletter subscribers asking variations of the very same Question:

What is 'step over drive down?'
How do you 'step over drive down?'
What does 'step over drive down' actually do?

I think you understand what I mean.

And this is a great question that clearly needs some further explanation.

The only way to get faster is to learn to apply more force to the ground. Simple Physics state that every action has an equal And opposite reaction. So it stands to reason that the more force you apply to the ground with every step, the more it is going to give back to you.

Now this is an overall concept of course. Athletes must use a variety of training methods to develop this ability. But it is this ability to apply greater force to the ground that determines how quickly an athlete can accelerate, change directions or maintain top speeds.

So I don't want you to get the idea that if you practice one specific drill or do one specific lift in the weight room that you will now have done everything required to help athletes achieve all their speed goals.

The truth of the matter is that you have to build all of your speed development around this fact. By improving things such as flexibility, doing short hills runs, running at full speed, performing speed drills, strength training and plyometrics, athletes directly and indirectly improve their ability to apply more fore to the ground by becoming stronger, more coordinated and thus more efficient.

All of these elements added to a structured speed workout program will result in every athlete quickly improving their ability to run faster.

But for the purposes of this article, I want to focus on the action of 'step over drive down' because efficiency is important and if your athletes' running form is terrible, then they will not be able to take advantage of all the work that goes into mastering the ability to apply force to the ground.

Some coaches and trainers have suggested that doing speed drills will not improve technique. Some say that other elements of training will actually correct technique by their very nature.

In my experience working with thousands of athletes of various ages, sports and skill levels, I find that *certain* speed drills are an excellent and required means of reinforcing these ideas. So what exactly am I talking about?

First, lets break running down into two parts: accelerating and maximum velocity or speed maintenance.

Most sports rely heavily, if not exclusively, on acceleration. This means that athletes rarely reach full speed during while competing in their sport. A great example of this is American football where athletes compete mostly in spurts of running that last 5-20 yards. The only time they reach full speed and must try to maintain it is when a breakaway occurs.

I bring this up because there are going to be differences in the way athletes must run and think about running depending on whether they are accelerating or attempting to maintain top speeds. The differences are subtle but significant and must be addressed.

Yet, the overriding principle remains the same, they must 'step over, drive down'.

More specifically, athletes must learn to step over the opposite knee and drive the foot down into the ground so that the foot lands, generally speaking, beneath the hips.

As I just mentioned, there are subtle differences between where the foot strike will take place depending on what phase of running the athlete is in.

The important factor is that they be able to put themselves in a position to apply force to the ground as efficiently as possible.It's really one of those paradoxes that we often find in athletics. At the end of the day, no matter what else an athlete trains and regardless of how great their coaching is, if they aren't in a mechanical correct position upon foot strike, it doesn't matter how perfect the rest of their training is, they're going to under perform.

At the same time, all the mechanics in the world won't help an athlete who doesn't have the strength, coordination and flexibility required to apply that force.

And this is why athletes *need* a complete speed training program to help them achieve their full potential.It's the reason why sometimes we see super strong athletes who can put up ridiculous weights in the weight room, but get them on the track or on the field and they're slow as molasses on a cold winter morning.

It's lack of efficiency, not lack of strength. As coaches and athletes we must change our focus.

And that's' why I cue the step over, drive down technique. As an athlete, and I pretty darn fast one I have to say, this was my Achilles heel. No one ever taught me how to do this properly and so I suffered from a number of the side effects of poor efficiency: painfully slow acceleration and chronic hamstring, arch and knee problems.

Talent took me to a pretty high level, but now I sometimes sit back and think to myself that curse afflicting many former athletes 'what if...'

So that's why I've made it one of my life's missions to make sure that other athletes and coaches don't allow themselves or their athletes to underachieve like I did.

Because if one person, one time had been a good enough coach to pull me aside and teach me how to 'step over, drive down' my entire athletic career would have gone in a completely different direction.

So as I've spent all these years studying speed development, in many ways searching for the reasons why I didn't achieve my athletic goals. 'Step over, drive down' is a Truth that always rings clear in my head as the primary solution to many athletes' lack of achievement.

Over the years I've found a particular progression of cues, drills, exercises and techniques that, when taught in a specific order using specific ways of understanding how and why it works, athletes quickly make radical changes in their technique and efficiency.

And that means, of course, they got much faster.

But the truth is, you could have your own copy of Complete Speed Training in your hands to get a better understanding.

You can see my specific drill progression on video. And watch as I perform each drill with perfect technique as I explain exactly what to look for, how to teach it and where and how athletes will do it wrong.

Because like I said. Without getting this technique down, the rest of your training is like trying to teach algebra to an infant: Pointless.


For more cutting edge speed training information click HERE now.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Death to Pop Music

Today I'm gonna put training on the back burner and discuss my other biggest passion in life which is music. The state of music today can be quite dismal at first glance. Every Tuesday when new albums are released I log onto iTunes and buy at least 30-50 new songs. I check the new releases, grab some stuff there and then end up spending a half hour searching out other stuff that somehow makes its way into my account. When I look at the top ten charts though, I'm usually sickened. T-Pain? Colby Calliat? Souljah Boy? Baby Bash? Fergie? Good Charlotte? BRITNEY SPEARS????

People, this is NOT good music. Nas was almost 100% on the money when he said hip hop is dead. As someone who grew up listening to real hip hop and has the Public Enemy logo tattooed on his arm, it pains me to listen to some of the crap that is out there today. Luckily there are a few artists still making real hip hop including Nas, Talib Kweli, Common, and my good friend E-Reece.

Fortunately, the state of rock is not as bad as the current state of hip hop. Sure when you look at the pop charts (or worse yet, listen) you need to do all you can to hold your lunch down, but if you dig deeper you will see that there are plenty of great bands making real rock & roll.

Without further adieu here is a list of some stuff that, while you won't ever see them selling a million records, is on high rotation on my iPod and definitely worth checking out. Especially if you can't stand the sight or sound of Daughtry or Carrie Underwood ever again.

Note: This is NOT music to train to. That's a different topic for a different time. While I love hearing Slayer in the gym; it's the last thing I want to hear at home or driving in my car.


-Kings of Leon

-State Radio

-Pete Yorn

-The Beautiful Girls

-Built To Spill

-Xavier Rudd

-Silversun Pickups

-Matthew Good

-The Shins

-Black Rebel Motorcycle Club

-Pete Francis

-LCD Soundsystem (not really rock but good stuff, especially live)

-Deathcab For Cutie


-Sea Wolf

-The Fratellis

-Tokyo Police Club

-The Black Keys


At the Big Seminar, someone asked Jim Wendler what five CD's he would buy if he only had $100. Later that night, my friend Keith asked me the same question and (for anyone who's interested) here's my answer, although it is a brutally tough decision:

1) Vs.- Pearl Jam
2) Ten- Pearl Jam
3) It Takes a Nation of Millions To Hold Us Back- Public Enemy
4) Us Against The Crown (w/ Bonus Tracks)- State Radio
5) The Low End Theory- A Tribe Called Quest

Runner up- Because of the Times- Kings of Leon (absolutely amazing album from start to finish)

Monday, November 05, 2007

Mike Mentzer: Genius or Lunatic?

If you don’t know who Mike Mentzer was I will give you some quick background. He was a famous bodybuilder who competed back in the seventies and eighties against none other than Arnold, himself. He was known for being a huge proponent of extremely low volume training. Mike was either loved or hated; there was no in between. He had some radical view points and an in-your-face way of expressing them. He even had the balls to call Arnold out about his high volume training protocols and say what a complete waste of time it all was.

Mike Mentzer’s basic ideas and theories were that we are all grossly over-trained in sets and overall volume but under-trained in intensity. He recommended somewhere between one and three sets per bodypart, once every 7-21 days. He also knew what I have since learned; that high protein diets are unnecessary and are just another scam perpetrated by the bodybuilding industry to force you to buy more protein powder and useless crap.

Many people thought Mike Mentzer was a genius and learned a great deal from him while making tremendous progress employing his advice. Others thought he was completely insane and needed to be committed.

I, personally, loved Mike’s attitude and rebellious nature. I also learned quite a bit from him and when I first read Heavy Duty way back in the early 90’s, it completely changed the way I thought about training. It also led to some outstanding results.

The problem was that at the time I was like many of you; constantly in search for the next best training program and always thought there was a better way of doing things. So I lost my way for a few years while experimenting with everything under the sun.

Sadly, you have to get off the right path and get lost for a while in order to realize that you were heading in the right direction all along.

It has been at least 15 years since I read Mike Mentzer’s training theories for the first time and I have experimented with quite a bit of different loading parameters and training methods since then. I can now state, unequivocally, that Mike Mentzer was a lot smarter and a lot closer to the truth than a lot of people I have taken advice from over the years.

Was he a genius?

No. But he was a smart guy and a rational thinker. He never just blindly accepted what everyone else did. He thought for himself and questioned everything.

Looking back I can say that Mike was a little off with his frequency recommendations and that the intensity he advocated was a bit too high and unnecessary. In fact, I think some of the extreme intensity techniques he advocated may have even been counterproductive. I also strongly disagree with many of his exercise choices.

But that doesn’t mean that Mike’s ideas weren’t effective. He is, after all, responsible for helping Dorian Yates win the Mr. Olympia contest.

Mike knew the dangers of overtraining and realized just how unnecessary and counterproductive all that useless junk volume really was. He knew that it didn’t take anywhere near as much training as most people think to produce dramatic gains in size and strength. Mike knew and preached to people that if they couldn’t get the job done in a fraction of the sets they normally used then they weren’t training hard enough. Or maybe they weren’t eating properly or getting enough rest… But whatever it was, their lack of progress was not due to their lack of training volume. In fact, their training volume may have been what was holding them back.

I respect what Mike Mentzer contributed to the strength training world and will always consider him a pioneer in our business.

To learn how I incorporated many of Mike Mentzer’s theories with my own (that are based on 20 years of in the trenches experience and endless discussions with renowned coaches and trainers) to create the best muscle building system available for drug free, genetically average lifters, go to now.

Kick ass,
Jason Ferruggia


“Just another update on my progress, Jay. My squat is up 80 pounds and my bodyweight is up 17 after the first 9 weeks. Can’t wait for the next phase.
Justin Carrol

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Another Success Story

Well, all I have to say is, "nothing but results." Your program has not only allowed me to have better time management, but has given me more of a life. I used to work out 5-7 days a week up to over an hour at most times. Every year I would get sick sometime around the months of March and late in the year in November and December, obviously due to overtraining. Now, I get to spend more time focusing on my studies for ministry, and spend more time with people than ever before. I used to be workout crazy, and I chased all the supplements, but now I dont use any supplements!!! That not only saves me more money, but I also dont worry about whats going into my body. I used to spend anywhere from 60-120.00$$$ a month, just on supplements. I saw your program and thought, ok I can spend 45$ on this, which would equal out to one container of NO-Xplode. But if the program was bogus, then I really didnt waste any money.

Not only have I learned a greater respect for "training," but I have realized why I do it. Its for the challenge and desire to get friggin huge. Now I workout three days a week, I dont waste any more money on supplements, I have more time to spend with friends, family, and school. And again nothing but results. I am now lifting 10-20% more than I was before the program. I have been training on this program for four weeks. My body composition has already changed. I went from a weight of 180-185 to a solid 195, without gaining hardly any fat. I am changing up my next four week program to see how things work, and I expect nothing less than results. I want to commend you for your efforts and oustanding committment that you have to get back with your customers. I would definitely refer your program to any person wanting to gain weight and pack on muscle. Your program builds confidence with a well balanced look at bodybuilding.
Thanks alot, your program has changed my life literally,
God Bless,
Steven Combs


Better results in far less time ==> Muscle Gaining Secrets.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Cuz Stone Cold Said So

It was May of 1997. I walked into a bar in New York City with my brother and our friend Todd. Standing right in front of us was none other than “Stone Cold” Steve Austin who had just begun what would turn out to be the biggest and most successful run in the history of professional wrestling. Since I was at Wrestlemania I and had been a huge fan since 1982 I was star struck and excited by the sight of “Stone Cold.”

Inexplicably, he was standing alone so we went right up to him and started talking. Before we knew it an hour had passed and we hadn’t had a drink. Steve suggested that we head down the street to another bar and we were on our way.

“Am I really talking to Stone Cold Steve Austin like he’s an old friend I’ve known for years?” I wondered. As a lifelong wrestling fan it seemed like a dream. Before I could ponder the situation any further, I felt a huge hand slap me on the back. “Ready, Jay?” Stone Cold asked.

Indeed, I was.

When we got to the next bar we grabbed a few bottles of Guiness and went over to a corner of the room where we continued our discussion which soon turned to training. While you are usually disappointed when you talk training with professional athletes or other famous big dudes after you learn that they built all their size on 50 sets of leg extensions and flyes, the conversation with Steve was actually quite surprising.

His favorite exercise was squats. “If you do a lot of heavy squatting, you’re gonna get big; I don’t give a sh*t what anyone says. I used to squat all the time. Loved to squat. It’s the best exercise there is. My favorite squat workouts and the ones that really got my legs to grow were real high reps. I used to do 20-40 rep sets and my legs blew up.”

“Yeah, high rep squatting is definitely one of the best things you can do to build huge legs.” I said. “I first learned about that from reading Super Squats and some stuff about how Tom Platz used to train. You can’t argue with the greatest legs in the history or bodybuilding.”

***As a side note, my good friend recently moved next to former Olympic gold medal wrestler and former WWF world champion, Kurt Angle. While they were taking the kids out trick or treating the other night they started to talk training. Kurt said that he, too, loved high rep squats and had done something like 405 for 20 and 315 for 50 reps. More proof of the value of high rep squatting. (High rep leg presses or hack squats also work quite well).***

Steve told me that some of his other favorite mass building exercises were the big, old school basic compound movements. What a relief this was to hear. Although his training had evolved because of how beat up he was from years of wrestling he swore by the basics for getting big and strong.

No training talk with Stone Cold Steve Austin would be complete without asking him how he got such an enormous neck.

“Oh man, I had a neck harness and just did this sh*t all damn day,” he said as he mimicked the motion of doing an extension with a harness around his head. “Everyday, that’s all I did. Ya gotta have a big neck.”

“I couldn’t agree more,” I replied.

Later that night, Steve hopped in my truck for the ride back to his hotel in Jersey where he was staying. We exchanged handshakes, hugs and phone numbers and planned to meet up again soon.

We did so a month later when he invited me back to the locker room after a show in Boston where I met Bret Hart, Vader, Mick Foley and quite a few others. We discussed many things that night including conditioning and nutrition, but that’s another story for another day.

Until then, remember what Stone Cold said and make sure you’re squatting heavy and, at least some of the time, for high reps (12-25). Keep making consistent progress and upping your weights and you will be buying new jeans before you know it.

Jason Ferruggia

For the real truth about building massive muscle without steroids in less time than you ever thought possible, visit

“Jason, I will keep this short and sweet, I just wanted to say that I was skeptical when I bought your program but you have completely changed my mind and the way I think about training. I think this is the best written and most well thought out training book I have ever read. The bonus stuff, especially Jim Wendler’s Secrets to Super Strength is awesome. I will tell everyone I know to get this book immediately. Keep up the great work and a sincere thank you.”
George Wallace

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

How Bad Do You Want It?

There's plenty of people out there who continually make excuses for their lack of progress. Matt Rhodes is not one of them. Matt was a skinny guy with a fast metabolism. Like a lot of people, Matt thought he could never gain weight. That is until he met Vinny Dizenzo who completely changed his mindset. Once he made the commitment, Matt went from 240 to 300 pounds. He also traveled several hours per week to train with guys who were better than him and to learn from the best.

So if you or someone you know thinks that you are destined for failure and won't ever be able to gain weight or get strong because-
- you have a fast metabolism
- don't have a big appetite
- have crappy genetics
- have a small bone structure
- don't use all the steroids "those guys do"

I highly suggest you take a few minutes and listen to how Matt Rhodes did it. I once went from a 147 pound high school senior to 231 pounds a few years down the road but I learned quite a bit from talking with and listening to Matt this weekend. I hope you do the same.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

More Funny Stuff From Boston

We were supposed to be doing the two tough guys pose but I couldn't keep a straight face (as usual).

What I Learned at the Big Seminar By Alwyn Cosgrove
1. Big is a relative term. What is Big in Boston would not be allowed into Rhodestown.

2. Nick Rhodes from Duran Duran has gained a lot of weight since the glory days. He is no longer “hungry like the wolf”. In fact he usually leaves food on his plate.

3. If a 275lb man doesn’t finish his dinner, a 300lb man will be upset.

4. Jason Ferruggia really is a vegetarian. It was not a marketing ploy for his new product line as was originally thought.

5. In the host’s wisdom – you should put the guy who flies in from a different time zone on first. Which was 5 in the morning his time. Which means he has no idea what he said.

6. Jabba the Hutt was based on a real person.

7. A goatee that is too heavy can cause a large muscle imbalance.

8. Jim thinks programs are not important

9. Jim thinks plans are very important.

10. No one knows the real difference between programs and plans except for Jim. And he’s not telling.

11. Jim thinks goals are extremely important.

12. For the love of God DO NOT tell Jim you don’t have a goal.

13. Jim believes that you can get to Chicago if you just drive. In any direction. With no map.

14. Jim thinks that people should only buy one book.

15. That book is the New Rules of Lifting by Alwyn Cosgrove

16. Or Afterburn.

17. There are people on internet forums who hate me. I am “the worst trainer they have ever heard of”.

18. But they HAVE heard of me ….

19. A dying child from the make-a-wish foundation who wants to visit Rhodestown just once will not get in. Even if he weighs 274.9.

20. Jim hates Crossfit

21. Jim hates kettlebells

22. Actually Jim hates everything. Particularly people who don’t ask questions. And don’t have goals. Or ask questions about goals.

23. Boxers can only lift 88lbs. 89lbs would be too much.

24. Jim has no comment about (CENSORED)

25. Jason has deduced that if you have two clients instead of one – it is better.

26. BTW – it’s RELENTLESS – not ridiculous

27. Dave Tate is the worst person ever to play word association with.

28. Jim Wendler is the word association World champion and greatest of all time.

29. Murph believes in non-conventional training

30. This consists of squats, deadlifts and bench presses

31. Jim thinks the drawback of non-conventional training is that the equipment is hard to find.

32. Waxy maize is not a breakfast cereal

33. It is indeed a high molecular weight carbohydrate.

34. No one knows what that means. Except Justin Harris.

35. No one knows how much rice molecularly weighs.

36. It is imperative that you memorize lines from There’s something about Mary and Anchorman if you want to succeed in this industry

Additions to Alwyn's List by Smitty from the Diesel Crew

Things seen at TPS this weekend:

Hairy man, with pants down around his ankles in the lobby of TPS, wearing a black mankini

Murph with entire can of cope in his lip

Dudes sitting around doing nothing….sweating

A bar that wouldn’t serve more than one beer

A Trojan condoms hockey jersey

Dudes walking on treadmills with flip flops

A Scot rubbing my lips while I'm in between bites of pizza

Things heard at TPS this weekend:

“Yeah dude, I stick my tongue all the way in…”

“…spray that on my ass, I got major swamp ass…”

“Dude, are you serious? Get out of my bed, I don’t even know you…Smitty, get up here!”

“Smitty, you’re hardcore? shouldn’t get them handed up unless your back is hurt”

“yeah, I’m getting another tattoo on the other side of my neck….i can’t talk about it”

Question: “You tore your bicep?” Reply: “Yeah, but I locked it out.”

“You guys got a treadmill? I got to get warmed up…Vinnie do you know how to turn this thing on?”

“1985? I was smoking angel dust and holding people up at knife point”

“Yeah dude, warrior lip rub”


My Weekend in the City of Bad Accents by Vincent Dizenzo

Dave, Jim, Murph, Alwyn, and Jason are very cool and hospitable guys. You can learn from all of them regardless of what you do. Actually, Jim's not that hospitable, but he is the other things. Here were my highlights:

-I got to train with Dave Tate!

-Jim has hot legs.

-Alwyn does a hell of a Shrek impersonation and is about the funniest guy I have ever met.

-Jason does not like Alwyn.

-Murph is still dirty.

-Rhodes hates boneless chicken wings.

-Cancer sympathy is good for two years, but it won't get you into Rhodestown (might get you into Rhodesville).

-Even the Mayor can be thrown out of Rhodestown.

-You need to flex for pictures.

-Murph is now down a small stone as well as a trap bar.

-Wendler is not in Rhodestown, but somehow runs the damn place.

-Pink asprin give you a headache.

-Dave really likes being big.

-You can't talk about _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

-Those guys are even more f@cked up than I am!

Thanks for having me. Can't wait until the next time.


I spent this past weekend with my good friends Dave Tate, Jim Wendler, CJ Murphy and Alwyn Cosgrove. Minus Dave, we were all speaking at The Big Seminar being held at Murphs place, Total Performance Sports. My full recap of the weekend will be coming up on Friday but for now I would like to share some funny stuff.

To understand what we are talking about you need to know what Rhodestown is. Rhodestown was created by heavyweight powerlifter, Matt Rhodes. It's basically all about being big and strong and the opposite of metrosexual. Rhodes, Vinny Dizenzo, Dave and Jim all take acceptance into Rhodestown very seriously, which made for some hilarious conversations over the weekend including Cosgrove's excessive questioning about how he could get in. Below is Matt's original post:

Welcome to Rhodestown

We will not be drinking Kool-aid. Rather, Liquid D-Bol in Gatorade, EVERYDAY!

I feel it's time to elevate my god-like status to that of cult leader. My followers are growing in numbers. This is a message for those who choose to listen, and a warning for those that do not. And, I am the one to bring this message. A message of hope.

Here are some of the basic requirements of membership in the cult:

1. You MUST be at least 275lbs, regardless of height

2. amendment to #2 - if you are not 275, you must REALLY want to be and you MUST be trying REALLY hard to get there

3. You must be happy when someone refers to you as "fat"

4. Progress Reports (stretch marks, to the non-cult member) are absolutely necessary

5. Sweating ALL the time, regardless of temperature is required and graded

6. You must have trouble wiping your ass and are willing to deal with it if you cannot finish the job properly

7. You DON'T have to take off your shirt to looked jacked. If there is any question, you're out

8. Visible abs are severly frowned upon

9. amendment to #8 - the top 2 can be out, but no more!

10. You must believe and put into practice that McDonald's is the perfect pre-workout food

11. You count PR's and 45lb plates, ONLY!

12. You must be willing to have a "fat-off" (like a flex-off) to see who has more bodyfat

13. You can ONLY measure your:
- neck
- belly at bellybutton
- and hips
Noone cares about how big your biceps are.

14. Addition to #13 - your neck must be bigger than your head. The nickname, "Stack of Dimes" is not cool

15. You must use 45lb and 25lb plates only. "Dimes, nickels, and chips are for chicks." -Dave Tate

16. If you ask, "How much do the chains weigh?" or, "How much tension does that band give?" you will be beaten, badly.

17. Under Armour or any form-fitting shirts are banned

18. If you are wearing a sleeveless shirt and hear, "You have a string hanging from your shirt." Put on a shirt with sleeves. The next part of that question is, "Oh, sorry. Those are your arms."

19. No one follows Prilipin's chart or calculates percentages - SMASH F@CKING WEIGHTS!

20. If you miss a weight in training, you will hear, "2 MORE REPS!" as the bar is being pulled off you

21. You must not put anything in your mouth that doesn't have calories in it

22. Amendment to #21 - your girlfriend/boyfriend is ok

23. You WILL be sodomized by all members of the cult upon acceptance. We will be wearing condoms and using Capsacin as lube. We do not provide mouthpieces so bring your own

24. If you are gay, that's totally cool. But, you must divulge this information so that when we are insulting each other and saying, "you're so gay, dude." we can make sure to say, "you're so hetero, dude." to you. If we are insulting, we want to make sure everyone's feelings are hurt.

25. If you have veins that are visible, other than in your penis, the Council of Fatties will have to determine if you still can be considered for acceptance

26. While training for a contest, you can ONLY gain weight. We in RHODESTOWN do not cut weight

27. There is no cutting/bulking season. It's a perpetual bulk. And we don't call it a bulk. It will be refered to as "getting jacked" or "getting fat"

28. Amendment to #27 - if health concerns arise, they must be brought to the attention of the Council of Fatties. If the Council cannot come to a decision, the final call will be made by Jabba the Hutt. His decision is final!

29. If you can see your cheek bones, collar bones, jaw bone, you need to start eating McDonald's for every meal until the problem is solved

30. It is looked upon with great reverance if your cholesterol is higher than your bodyweight.

31. You must retain water at all times

32. It is preferred that your blood pressure is high by medical standards. You must not care. Noone needs to live forever. We are here to SFW!

33. No food is to be left on your plate. If you throw up in your mouth, swallow it back down, and continue eating, you will excel here in RHODESTOWN.

34. Amendments to #30 and #32 - you may take the appropriate medications to control the problems. However, NO CHANGE IN DIET WILL BE ALLOWED! NO WEIGHT LOSS WILL BE ALLOWED, unless deemed acceptable by Jabba Himself.

35. You must find Tranny's hot

36. No more than 3 days per week or 12 days per month of cardio.

37. Amendment to #36 - sex doesn't count as cardio, but, you MUST be on the bottom. If you change positions, please videotape it so we can learn how it's done. Then, go to the refrigerator and start eating. There is NO REASON TO NOT BE ON THE BOTTOM! If you can/want to change positions, you're not big enough.

38. Absolutely NO Red Sox or Patriots fans. You people are so retahded and I can't stand the accent or ignorance. Get in youah cah and get the F@CK OUT!

39. We in RHODESTOWN are Dallas Cowboys fans. We do not recognize other sports

40. Sleep Apnea is preferred. However, we do recommend that you get a CPAP.

41. If you are hungry, EAT. If you are not hungry, EAT. It's that simple

42. Flip flops are to be worn year-round regardless of climate. If you can/want to put on and tie shoes, you must refer back to #41 and #1

43. Fat, bloated , and strong is the ONLY way to go thru life

44. Glenn Ross, Vasily Alexyev, Zadrunas Savikas, William "The Refrigerator" Perry, Nate "The Kitchen" Newton, Johnny Perry, OD Wilson, and Fat Bastard from Austin Powers are to be refered to as "beautiful". Others that fit the mold are to be refered to in a like manner.

45. You must put butter on everything you eat. Crisco is better.

46. There are no medical or dental benefits, but you will receive a free haircut

If you have concerns or questions, you're probably not going to be accepted. Do not try to deceive us here in RHODESTOWN. We will know if there are non-believers in our midst. You will be punished!

-your leader, Matt Rhodes

Disclaimer: I have the final word on acceptance into RHODESTOWN. If you are not accepted, you will be killed and eaten. Nothing will deter us from our mission to rid the world of Metrosexuals, Health Clubs, counting calories, maintenance diets, lifting to look good/get chicks, and prejudice towards others.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Feedback on Interval Training

(NOTE: Don't miss the video at the end of this post)

Friday morning I opened my inbox to find triple the normal amount of emails as usual. These extra emails were all reactions to my last two posts about intervals. As I scanned through them, one in particular caught my eye. The subject was "Thank God someone finally said it" and the email was from none other than world renowned fat loss expert and fellow Jersey native, Tom Venuto.

"I got a real kick out of your last 2 articles... glad you said it like only a guy like you can say it! :-)"
Tom Venuto

Tom is the author of the highest selling fitness ebook of all time, Burn The Fat, and has helped thousands to get in the best shape of their lives. He is also a competitive bodybuilder who regularly steps on stage in with bodyfat in the low single digits. Like Arnold, Franco, Shawn Ray, Flex Wheeler, Dorian Yates, Ronnie Coleman and Jay Cutler he does steady state cardio to get himself in that kind of shape; not intervals.

Tom talks the talk and walks the walk. Tom gets himself and all his clients and customers in mind blowing shape with lots of hard work and usually without the use of intervals. Although most people wouldn't expect Tom Venuto and I to agree on much, the fact of the matter is we agree on way more than you would assume.

That's the point most people miss. They are always looking for the differences instead of the similarities between coaches or trainers.

I spent the weekend with my close friend Alwyn Cosgrove and explained to him how I received a few emails from people who were bewildered by the fact that AC recommends intervals and I spoke out against them.

"I thought you guys were good friends."

Well, first of all, you can be friends with someone and disagree with their training philosophy. I never used to think this was possible but then I grew up and realized how ridiculous this thought process was. Secondly, you have to understand that the answer to every training related question is "It depends."

It depends on the athlete or lifter, training age, goals, injuries, experience, strength levels, etc, etc, etc.

So, as surprising as this may be to many people, Alwyn and I actually share many of the same thoughts on cardio and fat loss. When I presented a seminar to his staff at his gym earlier this year I was asked a question about what type of cardio to do in a certain situation to preserve muscle mass and when I said I wouldn't do intervals, no way, no how, everyone in the room gasped and looked in Alwyn's direction. Much to everyone's shock, AC told everyone that, in that situation, he agreed with me 100%.

And there are many situations where I agree with him. In fact, we agree on most training related issues, probably 99% of the time. But it's hard to express that across the internet. Unless you speak to both of us, many of you probably assume that we would disagree more often than agree. It's simply not the case.

Anyway, here's some more feedback on the intervals issue (my replies are in bold)...


I gotta say, very interesting point. I always wondered why authors use pictures of bodybuilders in their articles who DON'T train with intervals, etc.... strange how you would 'dog' their methods but yet exploit their bodies in your article... hmmm
Jimi Varner

Haven't you said before in men's fitness or one of your books that if one guys does intervals for 20 minutes after a weight training session and another guys does not, that the first guy will stay leaner?


Yeah, everything is rush, rush, rush anymore. Trainers try to sell you on the quick and easy method, when the smart money is always on slow and steady wins the race. There is no quick and easy way to get ripped and huge - if that were so, would we see fat people at every corner? I know the largerst excuse is: "There is not enough time in my day, I am too busy." I say bullshit ! Who does not have 20 minutes to set aside for cardio or a high intensity workout?? Get up earlier or stay up later, turn the TV off, put the video game down or whatever else you might do and pick up a weight instead. everybody can find 20-30 minutes.
Dave Z

I agree 100%.

Hi Jason, I understand what you say about intervals being over rated for fat loss, but what about using intervals for conditioning? I submission wrestle and train MMA the bouts are normally 5 minutes or there abouts and usually only a few rounds (at least at the amateur level) do you think intervals are useful for conditioning for this type of short duration activity?


I think varied intensity energy system training that mimics your sport is always very effective. I don't think intervals like they are recommended by many trainers for fat loss are very effective, though. Again, it depends on the situation. As an MMA competitor you would do best by doing sprints and strongman training and basically just getting on the mat. That is going to be your best form of "sport specific" conditioning.

Finally, I would like to share a brief video from my good friends Dave Tate and Jim Wendler. For those that don't know, Dave went from 310 pounds all the way down to somewhere around 240 and 4% bodyfat. It was one of the most impressive transformations I had ever seen. He never did intervals once.

Over the last year or two Jim has gone from 285 to 240 and, like Dave, never did interval training once. For a good laugh, check out the video below.

Gotta love it.