T Nation

Getting Strong Then Big, Smart?


#1

I’m 17 175 pounds & 6’0, and to save you time, i am already very informed on nutrition & macronutrients, although i do not follow a meal plan anymore considering the time it took away from my very busy schedule. i’ve been lifting for around 8 months and was obsessed with getting bigger the first part but now i care about being strong while still looking good. I’ve been doing 5x5 and have gotten considerably stronger and my mindset is if i get strong as fuck then when i try to get big gains will be faster. i think this because in my opinion bench pressing 10 reps of 135 makes less gains than bench pressing 10 reps of 225, 315 & so on. am i right or wrong? when i started trying to get big i wasn’t that strong but i’m getting there now. Is this smart? Advice & input would be very much appreciated.


#2

Your next seven years are the time in which you can do both very well. Use them to the best of your ability. Lift hard, eat well, and do your best to avoid injuries.


#3

Get on something like Bill Starrs or Doug Hepburn method and don’t steer away for a year. Once progress slows, go Texas method. Then hop on 531, Cube, Juggernaut or something similar. Once you get bored on one, go to the next. I recently went back to a similar Hepburn Method and I’m loving it at the moment. It’s very simple to gain strength and size. The part that isn’t simple is being consistent and pushing for progress. Adding a rep a week, or 5 pounds here and there is the way to go long term. Also, you don’t have to add weight to everything. Try and get a heavy session in in an hour. Try and do a set faster than last week. Just stay consistent and persistent.


#4

Getting bigger and stronger goes hand in hand if you get strong on a large enough variety of exercise, like 15 or so (including squat/bench/dead) instead of only 3, the bench/squat/dead


#5

Wrong. The effort expended when performing a set is what causes the gains. The amount of weight used has nothing to do with it. When you gain muscle, the current weight gets easier so you use less effort, hence you have to increase it to make continual gains. So, in the end, you end up needing to go from 135 to 275 to 315 and so on.

Which simply means you need to go bust your ass in the gym and your effort will dictate your results, not worry about strength vs hypertrophy and all the stuff that usually only small and weak people think about.


#6

It’s up to you really, what do you care about most, strength or size? Of course, chasing both goals is what most do, but the method and emphasis placed on each goal type varies from person to person.


#7

Is it possible instead that you got significantly better rather than stronger?


#8

If you can’t follow a meal plan, you won’t grow. I attribute this fact to the reason why I’m probably only 5-10 lbs heavier than you are. I have been very inconsistent with eating, and I’m relatively strong while not being very big.

Also, if you think you’re too busy to eat at 17 you will probably die later in life from malnutrition.


#9

LOL!

Too funny. And absolutely true. It’s hilarious to hear 17 year olds say this kind of shit. While there are exceptions out there (I know people in my life who were literally taking care of families and working full time at that age), the vast majority of 17 year olds do not know what ‘busy’ is.

Jasmincar hit the nail on the head though. The goals of gaining size and strength are largely synergistic, particularly for someone who is already quite lean, which I assume the OP is, given the stats he has listed. I KNOW that at my current size, I’m simply not going to ever become significantly stronger than I currently am without adding pounds of bodyweight. I am essentially the strongest I will ever be at 195 lbs. For the most part, you HAVE to grow to get stronger.

As pwnisher said, there is the potential that, because you have been lifting for such a short period of time, that neurological adaptation is a bigger factor in you lifting more than actual muscular growth/ strength gains. Definitely something to consider.


#10

I’m far from consistent with eating, and am decently sized while being weaker than you. Granted you are a freak of nature.


#11

I’m consistent as fuck with my eating and nowhere near as strong as Brady…


#12

@Yogi1 But I’d bet you’re more muscular :smile:

Not that anyone knows since you won’t post a picture…


#13

Yes, like flipcollar said, you get to a point where in order to get stronger, you have to get bigger. This means eating loads of food of course.

That’s exactly where I am at. For the first time in my life, I have to force myself to eat more. I noticed it the other week as I felt a little weak on the Bench and I hadn’t checked my weight in a while. Sure enough, I had lost 5lbs! This happened because, I “took my foot off of the gas” eating wise.

Just keep weighing yourself as keep progressing and getting stronger. When all the numbers keep going up, your doing it right.