Building muscle is not reserved for bodybuilders.
You can build a top-notch, head-turning muscular body without spending your life in the gym, eating food that tastes like cardboard, and suffering from sore muscles all the time.
I’m not a bodybuilder but I have a body built like a tank.
I wasted years with useless methods until I learned what works and what doesn’t.
I don’t want you to make the same mistakes I made, so I will share my hard-earned knowledge with you.
3 Essential Factors of Building Muscle
Get these right and you will build muscle. Period.
99% of training, eating and recovery advice is bullshit or minutiae.
Think of balloons. When you throw out the unnecessary weights, the balloon will soar upwards.
Likewise, when you cut out the bullshit, you will soar up to the ranks of top 1% of men who are muscular and in great shape.
Factor #1: Training
There are 640 muscles within a typical human body.
That’s why training a single muscle group isn’t an efficient way to build a muscular body.
The lazy man’s way is to train with compound movements which train multiple muscle groups at the same time.
This will save you a lot of time.
Another advantage of compound movements is they require minimal equipment.
I never use any weightlifting machines in the gym.
A power rack, barbells, dumbbells, weight plates, a chin-up bar, and a parallel bar cover all my weightlifting needs.
Machines don’t compare.
I pity the men who do machine work in the gym. Almost none of these men look good.
If you want to build muscle, there is no way you can escape from training hard.
If you are going to train hard anyway, why not train smart and cut down on training time and equipment?
Bonus tip: Cutting down on your training time will also help you recover easier, so get a gym timer. I use my smartphone’s clock app as my gym timer. Do whatever is convenient for you.
Factor #2: Eating
If you want big muscles, you need to eat enough calories and animal protein.
Add some fat and carbs and there you have a perfect diet for building muscles.
When you go to a grocery store, there are countless food options.
Almost all of them are unnecessary for building muscle. Most of them are actually counterproductive as they have little nutritional value (read junk food).
Now I will not tell you to eat zero junk food because I eat them too.
Balance is key.
If 80% of your calories come from whole foods, 20% calories from junk food will not hurt you unless you are trying to burn fat.
As for animal protein, I happen to like beef, lamb, eggs, fish, and cheese. And these are what I eat. You may choose pork, duck, turkey, chicken, whey protein and so on. Perfectly fine.
Eating fat is essential for muscle growth. You don’t need to worry about this because unless you eat 100% lean cuts of meat you will consume some fat with these foods.
Add some fish oil and butter, you are done.
Carbs are the easiest part.
There are so many choices that you don’t have to worry about a delicious carb source.
My carbs come from fruits, potatoes, and wheat (mostly bread and pizza). If your thing is rice, pasta, corn or any other, go for it.
I also get some carbs from my favorite junk food such as Nutella, candies, cookies and so on.
Remember to not go overboard with your eating though. Eat slightly higher than your maintenance calories and you will build muscle.
Bonus tip: Get a girlfriend who knows how to cook delicious dishes with your favorite ingredients and there you have the laziest way to feed yourself with the most efficient muscle building nutrition.
Factor #3: Recovery
When it comes to recovery, sleeping is king.
It is the best way to recover from hard training sessions.
Most sleep problems are caused by worry and stress.
If you train right, sleeping should come automatically because weightlifting is proven to reduce stress.
Try to get 8 hours of night sleep.
I personally never take naps but some people swear that they are great. So go for it if it’s your thing.
I don’t spend my time with any other recovery methods such as massages, saunas, ice baths, stretching and so on.
Bonus tip: Don’t drink coffee within 3-4 hours into your sleeping time.
So, there you have it.
The lazy man’s way to building muscle is:
Training: Do compound exercises (By the way, doing compound bodyweight exercises is a great way to start building muscle. Feel free to check out my book Ripped with Bodyweight for a bodyweight training routine that builds muscle fast).
Eating: Eat animal protein + animal fat + your favorite carbs + whatever the fuck you want to eat to go slightly over your maintenance calories.
Recovery: Sleeping is king. Everything else is minutiae.
This is as lazy as it gets to build muscle.
Be sure to read:
- 10 Truths About Building Muscle That Nobody Wants To Believe
- Building Strength and Muscle: Bodyweight Training (Calisthenics) vs Weightlifting
- How To Get Motivated To Work Out
- 8 Best Bodyweight Exercises to Build Muscle, Burn Fat and Get Ripped at Home Without Weights
- Why Is It So Hard to Build Muscle?