Thursday, March 26, 2009

Rules of Building Muscle

It's my personal training nightmare when a guy emails me and asks how he can lose weight...

...when only weighs 145 pounds and is 5'8"!

That's the wrong kind of thinking!

If you're already just skin and bones, exposing more bones isn't going to help you look good on the beach.

But almost everyday I get scrawny guys asking me how to lose weight when they have no muscle underneath the fat...

...they think they will look good if they "get ripped", but in reality, will look like they are starving.

If that describes YOU, the you MUST focus on gaining muscle instead.

This is a harsh lesson in reality, but too many guys are trying to lose weight when the focus should be on gaining muscle.

In fact, through my experience in working with athletes and thousands of men in the gym trying to lose fat and gain muscle, I've come up with a height-weight chart that determines whether you should gain muscle or lose fat.

NOTE: It's been updated...because it used to allow for more "wiggle" room, but this is the 2009 HARSH REALITY version of the chart.

Here are the ABSOLUTE numbers identifying the cut-off weight for muscle building and fat loss.

If you weigh LESS than the number across from your height, then you must focus on GAINING muscle if you want to look good at the beach.


So here are the numbers...

5'6" - 150 pounds
5'7" - 155 pounds
5'8" - 160 pounds
5'9" - 165 pounds
5'10 - 170 pounds
5'11 - 175 pounds
6'0 - 180 pounds

And so on. For every inch taller, add 5 pounds. For every inch shorter, subtract 5 pounds.

For example, if you are 5'8" and less than 160 pounds, you should NOT be trying to lose weight.

The truth is you MUST gain muscle if you want to look good on the beach. Losing weight would be the worst thing you could do.

You need to gain muscle with these workouts:

=> Click here to gain muscle

Start now. Do not wait. Get training and eating like the pro's!

If you lost more weight, you'd look like crap, to be blunt.

Instead, you must focus on gaining muscle. This will improve the appearance of your body, and take you from a stick-figure to a lean, muscular physique with a better chance of seeing your abs.

And don't worry, you're not going to "get too big". Please. If only!

At 5'8", a guy would have to be at least 190 pounds in order to be considered "half-jacked" and would need to weigh over 210 pounds to be considered "huge".

And the best news of all?

Because skinny guys are untrained, simply starting a muscle building program will give them maximum fat loss and muscle gain at the same time. You are going to get the best of both worlds.

Click here to gain muscle NOW!

=> Muscle Gaining Secrets

Let me know how your workouts go,

Craig Ballantyne, CSCS, MS

PS - And don't forget to eat!

Follow the nutrition guidelines from Jay, and don't skimp on the carbs.

Trust me, you'll look better by gaining muscle than you will by losing weight.

Click here to discover the biggest mistakes you're making when trying to build muscle:

=> Muscle Gaining Secrets


Sandy Sommer, RKC said...

Hi Craig!,

Great post butI must be an exception to the rule.:) When I went to the RKC I weighed in at 195.7 lbs at 6'2". That was in October 2008. Since then, I've gotten and S&^% load more powerful and have lost 13 pounds. I am pretty sure I've lost no muscle. I don't think I'd classify myself as skinny. Lean yes, skinny no:)

Laura said...

Very interesting. I'd love it if you were to come up with an equivalent version of that chart for women. I find I have no difficulty persuading male clients they need to build muscle if they want to look good on the beach, but female clients tend to be a much tougher sell. My own personal nightmare client is the lady who's 5'6", weighs 125, has 27-30% body fat, and tells me she wants to lose weight.

Craig Ballantyne, CSCS, MS said...

Laura, I'm out of my league when it comes to making a chart for women.

Would love to hear more of your thoughts!

Rob T said...

Hi Craig,

This is a topic that has been on my mind since I saw your interview on Vince Delmonte's blog a few weeks ago.

Like Sandy Sommer mentioned above, I think I'm also an exception. I'm a guy, 5'8", 147 lbs and ~12% body fat. I follow a 3xweek full body program developed by A. Cosgrove which I think is like your TT, and also Brad Pilon's ESE. (I lost almost 40lbs while increasing muscle and strength. My waist got obviously narrower but my shoulders actually got wider.)

I really don't think I look "scrawny" but I would like to get even leaner.

Perhaps your table doesn't account for people with lighter bone structures such as myself? My wrist is only 6.5 inches.

Or perhaps our ideal vision of "beach body" is simply different. (I prefer lean, athletic vs big & buff)

I don't want to lose anymore weight, but is it possible to get leaner without losing weight? If so, what kind of calorie surplus should I be eating? (I really don't want to do the "bulk" and "cut" routine)

Sorry for all the questions, but struggling for answers on this topic and I seem to be stuck.

P.S. Love your blog BTW!

Bob said...

Hmm... I'm 5'11 and weigh 161 pounds (male) and right now on Turbulence Training (2k4).
Do you think switching to a plan with more emphasis on muscle building would be a good idea?

I got myself a copy of Jason Ferruggia's Muscle Building Secrets a couple of months ago, I tried 2 workouts but the pauses between sets were too long (for example 4 minutes for the leg press in phase 1).

I'd prefer shorter pauses like in Chad Waterbury's "Get Huge in a Hurry". Have you heard about his method, would you recommend it?

Javier said...

hi craig im following the 6 month bodyweight program for a couple of months, im 6'3 but i weight around 165 pounds (74 kilos), i dont know if this is the right program for me or if must change something in my diet, i try to eat 5 meals per day. any advice is more than welcome, the program so far has been really good

Prasana said...

could you please give an exact workout for someone who is 5'6" and 185. Looks like I have to lose 35 pounds according to your chart.

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Troten said...

Hey Craig. Great article (Hope it's ok that I'm posting so long after it's been posted). Right now, I'm at exactly the cut off. I'm 1.75m and weigh 72kg (fasted, though, I think). I still have some lower belly fat that's hiding my abs. Should I keep a fat loss lifestyle or try a more muscle building one?

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