Lifting For Size Consensus

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December 11, 2019

I'd like to hear people's opinion's on lifting to increase muscle size? I'm currently doing the 531 program which is increasing my strength nicely, but I would like to increase my weight as fast as possible. My thought was to just add a bunch of volume onto my current program and do some of each.

I am currently 5'8", 163 lbs with visible abs. BP 280, DL 358, Squat 327, OHP 144

If you are not big I don't care about your opinion.

FWIW I'm on TRT, but just running a normal does until after my physical in January.

Post Information
Title Lifting For Size Consensus
Author SoggyTrain
Upvotes 7
Comments 51
Date 11 December 2019 04:03 PM UTC (1 year ago)
Subreddit askMRP
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[–]UnbreakableFrame10 points11 points  (1 child) | Copy

Lift your spoon to your face for 5 sets of 12 reps.

[–]SoggyTrainCucked by machines[S] 1 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy

Good shit. Fits the consensus so far.

[–]SaLted_peanUTs6 points7 points  (3 children) | Copy

Eat and add Wendler's Boring But Big to your current 5/3/1 programming. I would look at doing the Boring But Big 3 month challenge. Its detailed here:

[–]SoggyTrainCucked by machines[S] 2 points3 points  (2 children) | Copy

I'm going to do that, looks perfect.

[–]SaLted_peanUTs3 points4 points  (1 child) | Copy

If you're running Android this app has the template built in. I think its one of the best 5/3/1 apps available and well worth the $7

[–]SoggyTrainCucked by machines[S] 2 points3 points  (0 children) | Copy

Yep, I just adjusted my app actually. I love it!

[–]RP_PO5 points6 points  (0 children) | Copy

Just eat more, honestly. It’s bulking season, and you are on TRT anyhow, so I wouldnt worry much about losing likely wont.

I switch things up every 6-8 months or so. I go between reps of 3-6 for 6 or so months, then hit more volume of 8-12 reps for 4 or so months. Gain more size in that hypertrophy rep range though. I can gain strength without adding much size on 5/3/1, but when I crank up the calories I can.

[–]red-sfpplusHard Core Red5 points6 points  (1 child) | Copy

If you are not big I don't care about your opinion.

Well fuck I am out then.

[–]SoggyTrainCucked by machines[S] 7 points8 points  (0 children) | Copy

I think you spelled Tren wrong.

[–]HeckleandChide5 points6 points  (2 children) | Copy







You need to overeat your TDEE. Start at 500+ and adjust from there. If you are serious about this (aka you will make the time / find the $$$), do not drop the calories if you add too much fat. Instead, focus on quality of calories and additional LISS cardio. Most pro card guys do a shit ton of incline treadmill work at low speeds.

One more point of emphasis. Quantity is more important than quality but quality still matters. If you get your quantity from McDonalds, you will look like a powerlifter. Focus on non-processed foods as much as possible. Avoid sugary drinks and desserts. Carbs will ideally be complex & organic. Rinse and repeat.


8+ hours per night, every night, for optimal growth. Research sleep hygiene. Get checked for sleep apnea if you even think you might have it (even lean guys who lift can get it due to thickening neck muscles from squats / deadlifts). Get a white noise maker. Get a sleep mask. Go to bed at the same time every night and avoid more than 1 serving of alcohol ahead of bed because alcohol fucks up REM / stage 3 of sleep. Tart cherry juice for the win.


Volume. Blood flow constriction. Drop sets. Go to failure. Mix it up. Stay medium to high on the rep range. And probably the most important for hypertrophy, focus on your mind-muscle connection. Feel the muscle grow. CT Fletcher "I command you to grow!!" that shit. If you are 100% focused on hypertrophy, ditch 531, even BBB. 531 is awesome for power lifters and good for power builders but it is just not optimal for pure hypertrophy. Look up Renaissance Periodization or someone like that.


Foam roll. Lacrosse ball. Myofascial release for additional room for hypertrophy. Injury prevention. You get the point.


Don't be afraid to let the E2 get a little higher than optimal-for-mood as higher E2 has been shown to improve hypertrophy in some individuals. If you are 100% serious about this though, you know there are better options than test. Enough said on that.

[–]SoggyTrainCucked by machines[S] 0 points1 point  (1 child) | Copy

there are better options than test

The only guy I know for this is a loudmouth who tells everyone what everyone is taking. Good point about the E2. I've been tested for sleep apnea as I snore, but the test came back fine.

[–]HeckleandChide1 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy

Use the internet for gear. Do your own homework.

[–]JoeBuckYourslf7 points8 points  (27 children) | Copy

You need a surplus of calories. You’re small. Eat. I’d say start with 250-400 extra calories a week and reassess.

Don’t get caught up in which routine is best.

Edit: I too am on TRT. I normally run 1-2 cycles a year and then drop down to TRT and run a couple marathons and a few half’s and do a bunch of endurance shit like swim and mountain bike. When I do this I weigh around 210. My last cycle I was 245. It was test, deca, anadrol for 20 weeks. Used moderate doses and just stayed consistent. I got very large. I’d switch up reps every 4 weeks and basically rotated this...

4x12-15 (volume) reps for one month

4x6-8 (strength) reps for one month

Repeat two more months.

Anyway, hope this helps.

Eat mother fucker.

[–]FoxShitNasty834 points5 points  (3 children) | Copy

I use the nsuns tdee spreadsheet. Having bulked from 138 to 150 I can defo say eating "clean" is critical (belch).

Keep it simple STFU, LIFT and EAT

[–]JoeBuckYourslf6 points7 points  (2 children) | Copy

I was not conservative this last go around. I ate a box of cereal every day. I just really fucking love cereal.

Honestly, I hate eating. It’s such a fucking chore.

[–]Vegasman200022 points3 points  (1 child) | Copy

I just started bulking for the first time, two weeks in. And I feel like eating is a chore. If I could eat just as many calories as I wanted that would be one thing; but there is only so much grilled chicken and protein drinks you can do before you get tired of it.

And I fukcing love Frosted Mini Wheats.

[–]AlohaMaui8084 points5 points  (0 children) | Copy

Costco sells a whole precooked organic turkey breast that's 3.99/lb here in Hawaii - I bet it's way cheaper where you are. 4lbs of extremely lean high quality protein with no carbs and little fat for $16 bucks. In Hawaii that's an incredibly hard price to beat, and will feed me during my dinner meal (my big or OMAD one) for 4-5 days. I make thick 4-6oz slices and generally eat 2-3 slices cold with my spinach "salad". Good for 96-144g protein, with little eating. Great for sandwiches too. And it tastes WAY fucking better than cooked chicken thighs.

My other go to is also at costco - "Trident" brand Salmon Patties, $17/bag of 12. I eat 3 in a meal, good for 60g protein, and usually just prep the whole bag of 12 at once then refrigerate. They are decent eaten cold after cooking too. I pan fry them 3-4 at a time (depending how wide your burner is) until I get a decent char. I don't use any oil or butter, I have a proper nonstick pan and it doesn't stick, but you could for added fat/calories.

Mayo is a great way to get extra calories and flavor, and so is heavy whipping cream added to your protein shakes.

[–]SoggyTrainCucked by machines[S] 3 points4 points  (1 child) | Copy

Thanks. I am going to start tracking my calories, I've never done this. It is part of my MAP for 2020.

I usually start the day with 2-3 slices of bacon, oatmeal with a scoop of protein, and a pancake or two. I have at least 1 shake mid-morning and usually some real food as well, then lunch is Chipotle or a large sub, then nothing until dinner. I've never restricted calories. Shit after turkey day I ate a whole cheesecake in 3 days.

[–]RoccoPinkman1 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy

Funny, when you start tracking, you’ll be surprised how much you have to eat when it’s real food. My maintenance is 3000cal and it feels like a ton!

[–]Cam_Winston211 point2 points  (8 children) | Copy

Don’t get caught up in which routine is best.


Just add lots of volume. There is no "best" routine that bodybuilders do, but they do a lot of sets and a lot of reps and eat a lot of protein.

Edit: It's not consensus, there are studies behind these sorts of things. What varies may be what works best for each individual. I may have better results from 8-12 reps while you may reap more rewards from 12-15 rep sets.

Same with food, although protein & BCAAs are constant.

What's not really in question is that doing very few reps won't result in as much hypertrophy as doing more volume, even though some people do show gainz, especially at the beginning.

[–]RedPillGlasses2 points3 points  (7 children) | Copy

doing very few reps won’t result in as much hypertrophy

100% agree.

So where does the MRP fascination with 5x5 come from?

[–]JoeBuckYourslf1 point2 points  (5 children) | Copy

I’ve wondered this for the few years I’ve been lurking around here. Cardiovascular exercise is also seldom mentioned.

Unfortunately, I think a lot of the men who come here know jack shit about lifting. They have no idea where to start. It’s sad, but it’s the truth.

5x5 isn’t everything IMO, but it’s a start.

[–]Cam_Winston215 points6 points  (4 children) | Copy

I’ve wondered this for the few years I’ve been lurking around here. Cardiovascular exercise is also seldom mentioned.

First, cardio < > muscle building or getting stronger, which is what lifting weights is usually about. A good lifting session can get the heart going. (obligatory "I'm not a fatass too lazy to jog, here's my narcissistic pic moment)". I'm 52 and I do zero cardio. None. I control body fat 100% via intermittent or extended fasting. [edit: 6'6" 230 lbs]

Second, I think this site loves 5x5 because it's the simplest way to get a newbie into the gym without thinking too much. And, most newbies are fat & need to focus on lifting so the basics are fine to start with. Guys who struggle to bench half their body weight need to focus on building strength more than punching data into spreadsheets, IMO. So, I get it.

To a point.

I just usually chime in on posts where guys (a) have been lifting consistently for a while or (b) say they're trying to gain muscle, but doing some low-rep program and it makes my brain hurt.

To bring the cardio and low rep points together, recalling an oldie but a goody: When you walk into a room, no one knows what your 1RM or your time in a 10K are unless you tell them. If you're jacked, everyone notices & you don't have to say a word.

[–]JoeBuckYourslf0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

Nailed it.

[–]BarracudaRP0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

After running 5x5 variations for nearly two years, I was lean but my gains stopped. I started lifting higher volumes at the direction of several guys here, and in the last several months I'm seeing results again.

This thread is a gold mine for morons like me.

[–]Hugenstein411 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy

Well from what I understand it's just something that would be hard for a newbie to screw up

[–]mrpthrowa1 point2 points  (3 children) | Copy

250-400 extra calories a week

that's nothing. A day, and even that is small.

[–]JoeBuckYourslf0 points1 point  (2 children) | Copy

Depending on your goals, the specific diet you’re following and if you’re doing any cardio, I agree.

It’s a conservative and calculated approach IMO.

[–]hack3geRed Beret0 points1 point  (1 child) | Copy

He’s on TRT he can eat a fuck ton. I was eating 3500 calories a day on my bulk and I was the same size and weight as him. That is 1000 calorie surplus a day...

[–]JoeBuckYourslf1 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy

You’re right.

I suppose I was getting too technical.

Wanna grow? Eat until you hate yourself and then eat some more.

[–]Hugenstein411 point2 points  (7 children) | Copy

I'll add to that that's not a beginner cycle either. Head to the steroids forum and the beginner bulk is 500mg of test per week. There's a lot of stuff that you learn along the way with that. Estrogen management hematocrit management acne I mean there's a lot of stuff to learn on your first blast. Do it that way or your boobs are going to be bigger than your wife's.

[–]WolfofAllStreetz0 points1 point  (6 children) | Copy

Agreed. I run a maintenance dose of 100mg/week i cant imagine how fun 500mg a week would be. When you start running crazy levels all the other shit has to be managed which is really hard to perfect.

[–]hack3geRed Beret0 points1 point  (5 children) | Copy

There’s a trick to doing this - double your TRT dose and use that to learn to manage it. You can run a small blast to learn without the crazy sides if you are on TRT. The main reason they say to run 500mg is to maximize gains if you are going to shut yourself down to make it worth it.

My TRT dose was super high for a while - like double range on FT and I learned how to manage my AI and HCT. Things like taking baby aspirin, learning how high and low estrogen feel and dosing AI accordingly, drinking a fuck ton of beet and green juice and figuring out supplements to manage blood pressure.

Sure the blast I did was definitely more intense sides wise but it was easier to manage when I had learned some of that.

[–]WolfofAllStreetz0 points1 point  (4 children) | Copy

My doc is a dick and will not give me anymore than 100 a week no matter my levels. I don’t trust online test as who knows wtf is in that stuff. If I could get my hands on pharma grade test id buy it.

i also have genetic high bp so have to manage that bs with meds.

What green juice you use?

[–]hack3geRed Beret0 points1 point  (3 children) | Copy

Your doc isn’t letting you inject at home? You need a new doctor.

I’ve been taking the V8 green juice and then a few from Whole Foods. I just do 1 cup a day because it’s a lot more sugar than I like even though it’s natural.

Do you take COQ10, fish oil, curcumin and baby aspirin?

[–]WolfofAllStreetz0 points1 point  (2 children) | Copy

I inject at home. But if I run out he will not issue a refill until the the 75 days are up which 100mg a week covers.

I take all those but curcumin and baby aspirin. Used to take curcumin.

[–]hack3geRed Beret0 points1 point  (1 child) | Copy

How many times a week do you inject? The more you inject the lower your sides will be - my Cholesterol, HCT, HGB, etc went way back down after I switched to EOD injections. It’s the spikes in hormones that cause blood changes like HCT/HGB to go up which gives you high BP.

It’s also possible you have genetic BP issues which you can get around by fasting and getting lean but it’s only to make out more manageable.

[–]WolfofAllStreetz0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

I was once a week that sucked so i went to every 3.5 days IM in thigh. I also have low SHBG so I have to use more frequent injections.

I never have high hematocrit which is good I guess. My E2 is always Ok too.

Im going to start fasting again, i bounce from 175 in summer to 190 in winter at 5’10

[–]RedPillGlasses2 points3 points  (0 children) | Copy

You’re going to get A LOT of different opinions on this. Here’s mine.

531 is too low volume to create hypertrophy.

I do “bro splits”, they work for me. MWF, chest/back, arms, shoulders/core/legs.

As long as vary reps between 6-12, and change exercises every couple months, I continue to grow.

[–]coachdad82 points3 points  (2 children) | Copy

Gaining mass forum on Reddit is very good but let me summarize and save you the effort:

Eat 5,000-10,000 calories a day. As a Hard Gainer myself, I eat between 3,000-4,000 calories a day EVERYDAY just to maintain my weight and muscle mass. If I want to bulk up I have to lift heavy, limit conditioning workouts and EAT EAT EAT EAT EAT EAT until I'm sick.

[–]markpf732 points3 points  (0 children) | Copy

Can vouch for this. For me to maintain 6’0” 220lbs with a bench 325, squat 405, deadlift 500 it was 5000-6000 Cal’s per day all day. If I wasn’t lifting I was eating, sleeping, or shitting (an absurd amount of shitting logs).

When I eat clean at 2800-3200 Cal’s per day I shrink to 185-190lbs.

[–]SoggyTrainCucked by machines[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

Thanks for the summation. 10,000 calories a day sounds disgusting.

[–]hack3geRed Beret2 points3 points  (0 children) | Copy

Your lifts are decent but you are definitely small. I was you about a year and a half ago - same height and weight (I was closer to 150-155 but was 9% BF) I now weigh 190lbs with visible abs (not as lean as I was before though) - deadlift over 500lbs, squat over 400, bench over 300.

The good news is you are on TRT so cutting is like a cheat code you lose no muscle and bulking is ridiculous because you barely gain fat.

The bad news is there is no way to get the physique you want without blasting and cruising and adding other shit. I put on a good 15 lbs on TRT at the beginning and still felt small as fuck. My 12 week blast I put on almost 20lbs and have kept pretty much all of it. Im guessing I need to be about 215 before I cut to feel huge - that shit is gonna take a couple of years because I got 6 month doctor bloods to deal with too.

I still fucking feel small so figure that out.

[–]BobbyPeruRed Beret1 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy

Even on a “normal” TRT dose, you should have much better gains than without it. But , like everyone is saying, it’s simple ... eat more, preferably clean, and workout hard

[–]screechhaterRed Beret1 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy

Gonna have to eat and crush the water.

5x day. 7 hours sleep minimum. I use a nasal strip to get into deep sleep.

Not on gear, but god man, bulking is fucking work with or work out it. Gonna have to get in the mindset regardless and tune the distractions out

I would simply state bulking is hitting the macros. I ended up with pb in some shakes as my appetite severely gets cut on 2x day workouts.

[–]gameoflibidos0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

Calorie surplus with high levels of protein and the basic rule is;

High reps/ lower weight is better at training hypertrophy or muscle growth.

Low reps / higher weight is better at training for pure strength.

It's best to rotate between the 2 every few weeks keep the muscles confused. Change program fairly often.

[–]TheGoldenShroom0 points1 point  (1 child) | Copy

Look into the Super Squat program if you want to pack on some mass. It is basically a group of accessory lifts that are built around a single set of 20 squats that increases in weight every workout.

Be sure to bring your big boy pants to the gym. If you aren’t having your ass handed to you by the program you aren’t doing it correctly.

[–]SoggyTrainCucked by machines[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

I just did the DL day on Boring but Big today. Holy shit, 17 sets total of DL. My back is shot. I will look into that though.

[–]lolomotif120 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

Just be patient, keep lifting and eat right. There is no secret formula you just have to be consistent.

You can kill a man, but you can't kill an idea.

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