Name: Brad Bunger
Why I Got Started
After playing team sports, I decided I wanted to try something different. I had always had an interest in weightlifting but playing baseball up into my college years left little energy to weightlift. Back in the early 90's weight training was not considered something useful for baseball players, so the only time I lifted was during the summer being that I was playing summer ball too, I didn't really make any progress at that time either. After leaving baseball for good in '92 after two shoulder surgeries and one eye operation, I began lifting in January of 1994. Honestly, I just wanted to be big like the guys in the magazines of the 90s. At 5-fot-7 and 120 pounds, I knew it would be hard but I was confident that I could do it even though I knew it was going to take years of dedication and commitment. Now almost 20 years later, I believe I've surpassed any goals I may have set years ago. I continue to have small goals but I don't train nearly as heavy as I have in the past. I'm much more instinctive these days about my training. If I don't feel like training, I don't. Earlier in my life, I wouldn't have missed a workout no matter what.
How I Did It
The first thing I did was create a training journal to write down everything I did. I knew enough to realize that if you aren't lifting heavier weights or doing more reps, you won't progress much. I also knew that I was going to need additional calories to gain weight. I altered my diet as well and started using weight gainers to give me those extra calories. I started doing routines that I saw in the muscle magazines and that worked well for me for the first year or so. After that, I started finding alternative ways of training and started using more powerlifting methods. I found that years of lifting heavy weights has given me a thick, dense look even when I diet. I never backtrack. If I'm feeling good and my joints are not hurting, I still go for personal records whether it's reps or weight.
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I Knew Enough To Realize That If You Aren't Lifting Heavier Weights
Or Doing More Reps, You Won't Progress Much.
- Optimum Creatine: 5 grams taken 3 times per day with each protein drink
- Driven Sports Activate Xtreme: Taken 2 times per day, 2 capsules per serving
- Gaspari Nutrition SuperPump250: Taken before and during workout
- Optimum Glutamine: 5 grams per serving, 2 servings per day
- Champion Heavyweight Gainer 900: Taken up to 5 times per day depending on goals
- Optimum Pro-Complex: Taken 3 times per day depending on goals
- Whey Protein
I don't eat much solid food during bulking because I'm not able to consume a lot of real food. I have to supplement with weight gainers to get the additional calories needed.
Gainer Drink mixed in blender:
- Same Drink
- Same Drink
- Same Drink
I use the "Cut Diet" by the Scivation guys. I try to get around 3000 calories per day. This is just a sample of one day. I'm a picky eater so I don't get much variety. I try to stick to this diet as strictly as possible because it really does work wonders without starving myself.
Day 1: Chest
- Bench Press: 5 sets of 8-12 reps
- Incline Press: 4 sets of 8-12 reps
- Incline Flyes: 3 sets of 15 reps
- Weighted Dips: 3 sets of 15 reps
Day 2: Legs
- Squats: 5 sets of 8-12 reps
- Leg Press: 1 set of 10 reps, 1 add set of 8 reps, 1 add set of 6 reps, 1 add set of 4 reps, 5 minute rest periods
- Leg Curls: 5 sets of 8-12 reps
- Stiff Leg Deadlifts: 3 sets of 15 reps
- Calf Raises: 3 sets of 15 reps
Day 3: Back
- Barbell Rows: 4 sets of 8-12 reps
- Pulldowns: 4 sets of 8-12 reps
- Cable Rows: 4 sets of 8-12 reps
- Barbell Shrugs: 4 sets of 15 reps
Day 4: Arms
Bench Press: Ed Coan Bench Press Cycle - 2 sets of 10rm (12 week cycle)
- Squat: Smolov Squat Cycle -
- Deadlift: Coan/Philipi Deadlift Cycle -
Days 5-7: Rest
I'm preparing for some powerlifting meets coming up at the end of the year 2010 so I've changed my training to all powerlifting movements and cycles for now.
Suggestions For Others
- Get a training manual and use it! You can't get where you're going if you don't know where you've been and keeping a training journal will keep you from doing the same thing day to day and workout to workout.
- Count calories. If you don't count them, then you really don't know how many you are taking in. If you want to get big or lean, you'll do it. It's as important as the training.
- Don't be scared to lift heavy weights with low reps.
- Don't be afraid to use light weights and rep out.
- Make a lot of short-term goals that are attainable, but not too easy.
- Don't try and make this sport rocket science. Realize that the basics are what built this sport and all the pros continue to use them.
- Train your legs!
- Don't wear tank tops or sleeveless shirts to the gym. Also, stop looking at yourself in the mirror every day. If you do, you'll never notice any changes.
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