Here is my recent reply to end a series of questions about training for strength vs size:
You keep going round in circles trying to out-think this! There is no trick. There is no secret.
1) Your bodyweight is controlled by your diet.
2) Your lean-mass determines your strength (and vice versa)
3) Your fat mass is the difference between
It’s as simple as that. It’s math. The food you stick in your mouth and the weight you stick on the bar are the only variables you have to play with!
If, like most people, you choose to focus on everything other than measuring the variables in that unavoidable equation… then you should expect to be as frustrated and confused as you are!
You can’t change the result of a simple mathematical equation by complicating the math! All you’ll get for all of your clever added complexity is a wrong answer!
The food you stick in your mouth and the weight you stick on the bar are the only variables you have to play with!
In terms of training, either you develop the ability to lift massively heavier weights and your lean mass changes. Or you don’t develop that ability and you don’t change! Every excuse for why your strength capability doesn’t increase won’t change the fact that you won’t have more muscle! If you had more muscle, you’d be stronger!
Weight training is a dumb, angry, animalistic activity. It doesn’t care about diplomacy, political correctness or intelligent analysis. If you fear the weight then you should expect to get your head (or limbs) ripped off by it! If you avoid the weight (for fear of getting something ripped off) then you should expect to fail to conquer the weight AND fail to achieve the physique that could conquer the weight!
You must push weights like you are seriously pissed off and couldn’t care if you die trying! If you don’t believe, deep down, that whatever weight you lift is pathetic then you are in the wrong sport. Whatever you lift is NEVER good enough! The moment it is, you stop progressing!
Pushing a weight to the limit of your ability, as hard and explosively as you can, for as many reps as you can keep smashing out before the weight beats you, that is also the only way of accurately measuring the limit of your strength capacity. And that is critical to objectively measuring the progress of your strength capacity. So, ironically, being a dumb, psychopathic animal in the gym is the only way to intelligently and accurately analyse your training progress & success.
If you truly train that hard then you cannot do much! So either you can get strong and grow muscle from low volume training, or you just dont train hard enough! If you don’t train hard enough, no amount of volume – nor drugs – will make up for it. You will never be the best you could be or make the progress you are capable of. Not training hard enough is the single, most common thing that prevents people achieving their body and training goals.
If you were one of the rare, lucky ppl for whom volume and/or drugs did make up for your lack of hard training, you wouldn’t be asking me the question!
So there is the answer. That is the closest thing to a secret there is!