Structure of Gains
How do you get the ULTIMATE gains?!
What's up everybody. This is Dane Miller from Dane Miller's Strength Secrets, talking about all things strength, the simple methods that we use at Garage Strength to get you stronger, healthier, more confident and just swöle as fuck. We have been getting a ton of questions regarding how we can increase strength over time and what can our expectations be regarding those strength improvements. I think that if we can sit here from a big picture, from a macro perspective, from that top down look, if we can comprehend a few key aspects behind strength gains. Strength gains could be based off of myself who's about to turn 36 years old, what can I expect with my strength gains if I'm currently back squatting 210 kilos for triples versus if I'm 13 years old and I'm just starting to lift weights and to base your strength gains off of an assumption that you know, over the next six months I want to try and add a hundred pounds to my bench press. Is that feasible? Those are the questions that we get like, “I just cleaned 130 pounds, Could I clean 300 pounds in three weeks?” We've got to sit there and say, okay, there's a couple things at play.
1. We have to establish what type of system are you going to be training within or is it going to be Olympic weightlifting base? Is it going to be powerlifting base? Is it going to be strong man based? Is it going to be bodybuilding? Is it going to be a conglomerate of all these things? A hybrid as some people might call it.
2. How regularly are we going to be training? Are we going to be training three days a week, four days a week, five days a week, six days a week?
With two of those days as sort of like this active recovery day. So we can then ask these questions, what am I going to do on day one through three? What am I going to do on day four through six? Then the next step is sitting there saying, all right, if I want to have these strength gains, what are my means of recovery? Am I just going to be eating food? Am I just going to be sleeping eight to nine hours focusing on my nutrition coming from food? Is my protein intake a little bit lower than necessary? Or are we sitting there going, all right, we've read recent studies, 1.8 to 2 grams of protein per kilogram will optimize our lean muscle mass growth by more than 40% in comparison to those individuals that are eating less than 1.6 grams of protein per kilo of body weight. We want to try and get that marker to be established. We want to try and sleep 8 to 10 hours a day. We want to do mobility movements two times a day. We want to go to the sauna once or twice a week. We want to do very low intense, a low steady state cardio to help with recovery as well. Once we establish all these parameters again, we can go back over everything, how many days a week, what's our recovery methods, what supplements are we going to be taking, what are our expectations with every little thing regarding those strength gains and now we can go back to the beginning and say, all right, I'm 15 years old and I want to add a hundred pounds on my bench press over the next year. And if you're 15 years old, that is very, very feasible. Especially if everything is lined up and you're handling your recovery well and you're handling your training well and all these things. Now if you're 35 years old, you're not going to add a hundred pounds on your bench press in a year. That's a different point. So then we have to sit there and say, what is your training age? Not your actual age. It's more along the lines of I've been lifting weights since I was 11 and a half. So let's just say I started when I was 12. This makes my training age 24 right? So being 24 years under the bar, my adaptation mechanisms from a physiological perspective have been utilized quite frequently throughout the last 24 years.
For the last two and a half decades, my body has made these defense mechanisms. I need to be a little bit more creative with my stimuli. I need to be a little crazier with what variations I might be using. I need to be a little more intense as far as volume is concerned because I need to have a little stronger stimulus to adapt to whatever it is that I want to achieve. If we can sit there and say, all right, if we're under the training age of five, we are still able to add serious amounts of muscle mass. If you've been lifting weights for 5 to 10 years, you're establishing yourself in this realm of you're a veteran, you've done it, you've been through it, you've been injured, you've handled volume, you've handled intensity, you've worked through all these things. That has to be factored into what is going to be apart of your adaptation and your growth towards your goals. I think that that's the biggest thing that we have to remember is training age is going to impact those strength goals. This system of training that you're going to be using is going to impact those strength goals. The frequency in the gym is going to impact those strength goals. The amount of sleep that you're going to be getting is going to impact those strength goals. So once you can sit there and look at it all you can create this flow chart towards success. You could sit there and say, okay, well I'm only going to eat 1.5 grams of protein and I'm only going to train three days a week and my training age is eight years old and I'm only going to sleep six hours a night. Well, you're probably only going to add 10 to 25 pounds over the span of a year, but if you train five to six days a week and you establish that you want to be in a specific system towards your goals and you're going to eat two grams of protein per kilo body weight, and you're going to sleep 8 to 10 hours a day and you're going to do this mobility work and you're going to visualize, you're going to take care of all those little things, you're going to meditate and everything like that. Now we're talking about 70, 80, 90 pounds to add on your bench press or your back squat, whatever it might be. When it comes down to someone wanting to hit monstrous goals, we've got to look at it first from that top down perspective. Then we have to establish all those barometers and say, this is where I need to be to accomplish those goals.
I can't just ask a question and go, I need to ask a pointed question, plan it out, lay it out, define what it is, define where you want to be, and then execute based off of your goals. That means you have to hold yourself accountable. You have to wake up every single day and you have to sit there and say, “these are the goals that I set. I need to hold myself accountable to get to that point.” Having these hypothetical means of strength increases is great. Let me use a quick example. In Olympic weightlifting, we have these numbers that we want to hit and we want to hit these great totals, but everybody will complain, their knees hurt or their lower back hurts or their shoulders hurt or their techniques off. Then you find out, they're eating like 1.2 grams of protein a day. They might be sleeping seven, eight hours a day. They're doing mobility once a day. And they're not meditating, they're not holding themselves accountable. They're not coming in with technical goals. Then six months later their total is the same and they're just repeating the exact same stuff that they've been doing over the last year or two. And again, it goes back to you.
As athletes, if we want to achieve goals that are specific towards physiological adaptations, we know what the body needs to optimize adaptation and recovery and that all is laid out and it all has to be executed and you have to hold yourself accountable to get there. So it can't be this simple, I want X, I do Y, that equals my monstrous gains. It's got to be precise, it's got to be consistent and you have to be accountable.
Those are just some real simple tips. Define what system of training you want to be in. Recognize that you have to eat over 1.6 grams of protein per kilo body weight minimum to get gains. Ideally it's 1.8 to two grams per kilo of body weight for protein. Then you've got to start to factor in the meditation. Again, going back to the system, the frequency of recovery pathways. Stretching, meditation, visualization, technical study, all these things. And then that's when you're going to start to see those big goals and those bigger results.
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