T Nation

Stronger but not bigger?


#1

Howdy folks, me again. Here's the scoop... I train for strength and have been for the last few months. Seen great results, and am satisfied except for one thing... I don't look a tad bigger but i am much stronger. Anyone want to explain? Thanks in advance.


#2

How much do you eat?


#3

Post a sample(s) from a day or two of your training journal.

And what Thunder asked: what's your diet like?


#4

There's also the fact that you just stated you train for strength...

I know during my strength training periods, I normally get my strength up nicely, but my gut just grows and not my arms :frowning:


#5

Keep in mind that strength is related largely to muscle size but there is also a strong neural component.

Basically what's happened is that your brain has become much better at recruiting motor units and thus you're stronger. However, the physiological adaptations require more time to occur.

STU


#6

I agree with STURAT; but damn !! You lucky bastard !!! It would seem your CNS and neural adaptations must have really come together... Usually it is a given that along with increased strength there is hypertrophy o fthe muscles... oh well, everyone is different...

I wouldn't mind getting stronger w/o gaining weight; also your diet must be really dialed in to keep up your energy...

Which brings up another point; do you WANT to get bigger ? Some guys are deceptive in body size and appearance but can lift for days...

Count your blessings on being storng more so than looking strong... there is a huge difference.


#7

I eat a little more than maintinence (sp?), 500 cals. Let's use my bench workout from week to week. I'll add 5 lbs in 2 or 3 weeks.

so if it was:

225x5
230x4
235x3
240x2
245x1

in two or three weeks, usually two, it would be 5 lbs heavier. each time. Maybe my cns needs to catch up with my muscles or vice versa?


#8

I do want to get bigger, i'd like to look like a strongman instead of a body builder. You know big, but not ripped, i could care less if i was 8% bf.


#9

Try ramping up the calories and give Charles Staley's EDT program a shot. That is a sure fire way to pack on some size fast.

Mike Mahler


#10

the strongest ive ever been was at a bodyweight of 195 (c. 8%bodyfat;pretty ripped). the biggest ive ever been at the same 8%bf was 208lbs. my lifts were probably 10-15% higher in all of the big lifts. when i was weighing 208 my training volume was very high and i was eating around 5000kcal/day. at 195 i was focusing on frequency and intensity and not giving a shit about my diet. going from 195-208 was pretty easy , actually. try doing like the others suggested :up your training volume and start eating alot more. or, if you want to keep your strength and not take a traditional bodybuilder route, then keep lifting heavy and increase your frequency (still an increase in volume , yes, but not the same route as a 1/week bodybuilder routine). sounds like you are in a great position to do exactly what you want.

good luck,
ryan b.


#11

Mike thanks for the advice but i really dont care for adding size i was just wondering how im able to push more weight w/o more size.


#12

I'm confused, bobo.

First you say, "I do want to get bigger, i'd like to look like a strongman instead of a body builder. You know big, but not ripped, i could care less if i was 8% bf."

and then you say, "Mike thanks for the advice but i really dont care for adding size i was just wondering how im able to push more weight w/o more size."

Ummmm, which is it? Do you want to get bigger (add size) or not?


#13

nervous system


#14

Earlier in the year, I was gaining strength while on a reduced calorie diet!