From issue #35 (March 1995) of Hardgainer there is an interesting article by John McKean outlining USAWA President Howard Prechtel’s 1 year bulking routine. In his late 30’s Howard underwent a bulking routine in which he built up from bodyweight of 217# to nearly 300# at 5’10", utilizing two exercises per session performed 3 times/week:
Warm-up - MP Press: Med. weight barbell x 10 quick reps.
DB Press: 115# db’s for 5 sets x 5 reps
Warm-up - Regular squat: 315x10
Partial (21") Squat in the rack: 750#x5x2
Diet consisted of his regular 3 meals/day plus a “Secret Ingredient”.
That’s it. He NEVER missed a workout session but he also made adjustments in reps depending on his energy level - sometimes pressing for 5x2 instead of 5x5. His loading was enough to stimulate but never worked himself to fatigue or failure.
Every 5 or 6 weeks he would try for a record eventualy achieving a combined db press of 292#. Cold and in street clothes, in front of many witnesses he cleaned and pressed a barbell for 220x5, 255x4, 275x2, while shouldering the weight he had 2 10# plates put on and pressed 295, then repeated with 2 5# plates - overhead pressing 305.
Occasionally, when feeling good, he would load up 850 and perform the partial squats for 5x2, a few times with 900x5x2 and even 1000 in front of a room full of witnesses. One time, cold and in street clothes and no supportive gear he squatted (competition depth) for 515x5 and then 615 for a deep easy double.
Oh yeah, on his off days he was involved in a boxing program. He never stuffed himself with food, and didn’t eat much meat - just 3 “square” meals/day.
The secret ingredient? 7 lbs of bananas per day!