T Nation

What Was Your Breakthrough?

I suppose the story for many who lift weights is the same the world over, the newbie gains come nicely but then just peter out. Then a majority I think just plod on and on without really making progress. Some though have an Eureka moment and everything begins to fall into place.

What have been the breakthrough moments in your lifting careers where you changed things around or slaughtered a few sacred cows and then began to really get the best results of your life?

Next monday, when I start EDT. I’ve been tryin to get shredded for way to long. It’s time to get big.

Well, my story is probably like everyone else’s, but I’ll give it a shot.

i started lifting my freshman year in college with my roommates. we lifted in the “old gym” at school that only had crappy machines. of course we only did upper body work.

later that year i started training with some friends from my chem class and they took me to the “new” gym, which contained the free weights. of course we only trained mirror body parts which resulted in shoulder pain after my first two weeks.

the next year i started researching. i tried several different programs, body for life, hardgainer, some program calling for only partial movements, etc. despite this, i remained at 150 pounds with 12" arms.

i tried twenty rep squats, pullovers, low volume programs with no success. my real breakthrough came about my senior year when i found this site.

through this site i discovered the program that really helped me pack on the pounds. Westside for skinny Bastards.

Thanks to that program I went from 165 to 200 lbs with 15" arms. I am benching my bodyweight and I’m close to deadlifting double bodyweight. I know that I’m far from huge but at least I’m that much closer to getting there.

I started lifting when I was 16 and weighed 120 lbs (which was the same weight since I was 12). The first month I gained 10 pounds. Needless to say, I was hooked!

Fast forward 9 years. I was still working out 3-4 times a week. But shamefully, I still weighed 130. I couldn’t figure it out! I had books by Arnold and Bill Pearl and did all of the bodybuilding workouts in Muscle Media. No gains, nada, nothing!

I was on the internet one day and searching in Google under “weight gain”. At some point I came across an article on T-Nation that cross referenced Massive Eating. Eureka! It had never occured to me that I had to eat more to get bigger. God I was stupid!

Now it’s four years later and I’m at 160. Nothing substantial, but a dramatic change for the better. I love T-Nation!

[quote]steven alex wrote:
I suppose the story for many who lift weights is the same the world over, the newbie gains come nicely but then just peter out. Then a majority I think just plod on and on without really making progress. Some though have an Eureka moment and everything begins to fall into place.

What have been the breakthrough moments in your lifting careers where you changed things around or slaughtered a few sacred cows and then began to really get the best results of your life?[/quote]

When I was 12yo I wasn’t very good at sports cause I was clumsy. I went into the weightroom after school one day and found out that I might have been clumsy, but I could bench press twice as much as my friends. I lived in the weightroom from then on, and presto, I’m wasn’t clumsy anymore, and I was stronger and a better athlete than anyone else. (Epiphany #1: just getting in the weightroom put me ahead of almost everyone)

The point where I really started making gains though was when I went to college and put on my freshman 55. I drank and ate everything I could get my hands on, and all of the sudden my lifts skyrocketed even though I was doing the same thing as always. (Epiphany #2: Nutrition does matter)

When I was done with my senior year of football I all of the sudden had a lot of time on my hands. So I lifted while after class when my friends were in practice (the entire time they were in practice, all 3 hours, by myself with no one to talk to me). I didn’t go into the gym with much of a plan, I just went in and lifted. I benched, squatted, deadlifted, and hang cleaned 3-4 times a week. I blew up. (Epiphany #3: The worst training regimen done all out is better than the best one done half ass)

It was actually a couple months back when I was working out with my brother who is a Marine. I was spotting him on the bench and after the third rep of his set his spit flew up and hit me in the fucking cheek. I then knew what working out “hard” was all about.