Archive for December, 2017

Merry Christmas everyone! I have about 7-8 weeks left in my Winter bulk up and I now am officially fat.

Don’t get me wrong.  I have been lifting heavy weights and have been going to the gym 4x a week consistently all year, but I have also gained at least 30 lbs since the Summer.  Some of that weight is muscle but a lot of it is also fat.

I cannot tell a lie, it feels good to be big and strong.  My shirts fit really tight and last week I benched 315 lbs like it was nothing, but there are also some major negatives.

First of all, I noticed that I can’t breathe as well.  Easy tasks such as walking to the bus station for work or lifting furniture, starts to feel so much harder since my breathing is labored.  Obviously, this can’t be too healthy.

The other negative I noticed about being heavy, is that I am starting to snore.  There has to be some connection between being overweight and snoring.  I never snore until I hit my 3rd month of my winter bulk up.  Once again, this also can’t be too healthy.

Overall, my bulk up is going great this year.  I don’t want to fool people into thinking that I am just becoming an overweight lifter, but there are some obvious side affects of gaining weight.

I turned 38 years old today and I also have to think about high blood pressure and the heart attack risk.

As I get older, I will obviously have to bulk up a lot cleaner and maybe not bulk up as much.  But as long as I am in my late 30’s and early 40’s, I feel safe bulking up in the winter, just as long as I come down in the Summer.

I am off from work this week and only plan on going to the gym twice, but starting next week, it is game on until the end of my winter bulk up.  I am going to try a traditional powerlifting routine for the last several weeks.  So far, I have reached my deadlift and bench press goals, the only one’s left are squats and shoulders.

I will keep everyone updated.

-John

 

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This winter I set 4 strength goals:

  • 315 lb Bench (Achieved)
  • 500 lb Deadlift (Achieved)
  • 315 Squat (Almost, looks good)
  • 100 lb shoulder dumbbell (Going to attempt soon)

So far, I have reached 2 of my 4 goals and the best part is, I still have 9 weeks to go!

This has been one of my greatest off-season’s in a long time.

So, what have I done differently?

A) I cut down on the sets.  I am just focusing on heavy powerlifting.  Lots of singles, doubles and triples.

B) I gained close to 30 lbs.  If you want to get strong, you need to eat, there is no way around it.  This year I have “allowed” myself to get a little bit fat, but it is paying off in the gym in a big way.

I am still doing very light cardio twice a week, but not enough that it is slowing my strength down.

After New Years, I am going to follow a hardcore powerlifting routine and I might try to put on another 10 lbs of body weight.

Since I have another 8-9 weeks left, I am going to have to increase some of my winter strength goals.  I am going to increase the following:

  • 355 lb bench (My all-time record)
  • 525 Deadlift (Should be pretty easy, 545 may also be achievable)

Although, I am really enjoying being big and powerful, all good things will have to come to an end.  It’s not healthy to be overweight for an extended time period and I am not getting any younger.

Valentines day will be my final powerlifting week and then I will start cutting up for summer.  I plan on using the same methodology for my bodybuilding.  I am going to set solid running and lifting goals, and I won’t stop until I reach them.

Hope everyone is having a good year.  Some big updates coming in 2018!

-John

Check out my books on amazon.com!

!Lift Heavy/Fun Fast on Amazon.com! 

 

You need to eat to get strong.  If you are trying to lift heavy and your calories are not increasing, your strength gains are going to come to a stand still.

I made that mistake in College.

It took me FOREVER to bench press 315 lbs, although I was benching 305 almost every week.  Half of the problem was probably mental, but the other half, was that I was not gaining enough weight.

If you don’t gain any weight, why would your muscles look any larger? Where will the mass magically appear from?

One mistake I see in the gym all the time, is big guys not lifting heavy enough.  But, another problem is skinny guys not taking in enough calories.

If you are brand new to the sport, you will see some easy gains in the beginning, but that is going to stop eventually if you don’t eat.

A 20-inch bicep is going to weigh more than a 15-inch bicep, and if you don’t feed your muscles, all of the workouts are going to be a waste.

I am down to my last 10 weeks of my bulk up and I have gained at least 25 lbs.  It’s weird, but I only start to get super strong after I weigh 170 lbs.

At over 180 I am even stronger and when I am at 190-200, I am an ox.

You need to eat.

Can you put on weight slowly?  You can try, but this doesn’t work for me.  I need to lift heavy weights in the winter otherwise I am wasting my time.

Around Valentines Day I will start to cut down in calories and I am also going to get back into my cardio workouts.  The advantage I will have over the other guys, is that I will still be lifting heavy weights at a light body weight.

If I can bench press 355 in the winter and then still bench 275-295 in the summer, I will look a lot more solid than the so called “lean guys”.

I’m having a good bulk up season this year, my competition has been warned.

Screenshot_20171010-190334

-John Andre

patreon!Lift Heavy/Fun Fast on Amazon.com!

 

 

I officially weighed in on December 1st and I am in shock by how much weight I gained.

I weigh 175 lbs!  That is a 25 lb weight gain since Labor Day.

20171124_113303

My goal at the beginning of this bulk up season was to peak at 180 lbs.  Unfortunately, If I keep this pace up, I will reach 190 lbs in several weeks.

Going forward, I am going to continue to eat the same until New Years Eve.  At that point, I plan on gaining fat slower.

So, what do I mean by gaining fat slower?

It’s unfortunate, but when you bulk up, you will gain some muscle and also some fat.  It is almost impossible to only put on lean muscle.

But what you can do, is slow down the pace.

After New Years I am going to slow my body weight increase 50% by taking in fewer calories and by also increasing the cardio.

By Valentines Day, I will completely slow down and then I will transition into my spring training routine.

It’s crazy how fast the winter goes.   Only 12-15 week of heavy lifting left and then I need to focus on getting ripped.

Good luck!

-John

patreon!Lift Heavy/Fun Fast on Amazon.com!

 

I am now about half way into my winter bulk up and my progress is going great.  Last week I bench pressed 295, and on Friday, I hit my winter dead lift goal of 495.

Although there are only 12 weeks left in my season, I feel pretty confident that I should reach and possibly surpass my goals for the year.

20171124_113303

One thing that I am trying this year, in comparison to other years, is that I am increasing the weights quickly. For example, on Friday I was scheduled to deadlift 455 lbs for 4 or 5 reps, and then the following week, I would attempt my winter goal of 495.

During the warm ups I started to feel really good.  The weights were coming off the floor really fast, so I decided to go off schedule and straight to 495.  Working out is not an exact science, if you are feeling good,, go for the heavy weights.

Whether is is a 400 lb bench press, 315 lb squat for 10 reps or a 500 lb deadlift.  If its in the range of a weights that you should be able to handle, go for it.

Usually, lifting heavy weights is all mental.  When I started powerlifting in my teens and early 20’s, I used to obsess over heavy weights, and oftentimes it would cause me to screw up my attempt.

Now, after years of training, I have conditioned my mind to attempt each weight exactly the same.

Don’t get me wrong, having 500 lbs on my back and trying to go for a deep squat will still scare the crap out of me, but when it comes to a heavy bench or deadlift, I will go for it without hesitation.

Although I wasn’t scheduled to deadlift 495 this week, in my mind, I knew I can do it.

Next week, I might jump all the way to 550 lbs.

Why not?

Even if I don’t get it, your body and especially your mind will get a lot stronger just by attempting it.

Remember, heavy weights=big muscle.

Here is a picture of my from my powerlifting days.

20161113_211403

-John

Check out my 2 books on amazon.com or support me on patreon!

Lift Heavy/Fun Fast on Amazon.com!

 

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