T Nation

Hello and Some Advice

Hi all, Ive been reading here awhile and thought i would sign up to speak to some other people in the know.

A bit about me: Im 6ft tall and weigh 12 stone (sorry im not sure on the poundage!) and have gone up from 10 stone in around 2 years of working out and eating. Although Im heavier I just dont feel like i have put much muscle on. This is from me looking in the mirror basically. I am looking bulkier but I also believe due to the amount I eat it is a fair amount of fat (especially round my stomach and hips!) there is hardly any definition there.Naturally i am VERY skinny!

Recently (2 months ago) i changed routines so I go 2 times a week after being constantly tired and making no progress for awhile. I stick now mainly to Bench presses/Squats/T Rows and shoulder presses along with a few isolation movements such as side raises and barbell curls. I train very hard and consume as much as i can. A couple of questions for you guys who are more experienced:

  1. My shoulders are VERY unresponsive, its takes alot for me to get any DOMS the next day at all. I currently work them like this: 4 X 10 behind neck military press, 4 X 10 side raises and 4 X 10 Arnold dumbell presses. Any help appreciated!

  2. about DOMs - I cant understand if its a good indicator of progress or not. Seems about 50/50 depending where you read. I would think that if it indicates micro tears then it ‘must’ be good - ie: the muscle has broken down well from the workout and thats about all you can expect from a good session.

  3. does anybody swear by any mass building excersizes? 5X5’s for instance?

4)(the BIG ONE - )How do you know if your doing too much or too little on a muscle group? This seems to be the most confusing thing for me at the moment. I stick to around 12 sets per bodypart and 4 sets of 10 training to failure. The dreaded Overtraining syndrome is something ive read up on yet others recommend going 4 times a week! I belive twice a week for me has given me some (small) gains though.

Thats alot of questions, im just trying to soak up some ideas!

Thanks all, great forum!

It’s difficult to come up with a simple answer to how much is too much.

If your strength is declining, then something is wrong. If it isn’t increasing or declining, change your parameters up a bit.

Maybe up the weight and do sets of eight instead of ten. Then push yourself back to sets of ten. Up the volume. Drop the volume. Cycle the volume. Rotate out one or more lifts and replace them with alternates.

Maybe you need to eat a bit more, now that you’ve gained some mass.