For years, too many strength trainers eager to get bigger were told a couple of basic "facts" about how to build more muscle: they needed to use heavy weights and they needed protein supplements. I was no different than most of us (probably guys) who picked up the strength training bug: I wanted to get bigger too. 5'10" and 145-150 lbs isn't a body that most people respect or want. I wanted more.
The trouble was, I had a fiancee who couldn't work during her immigration process that I had to support and a job that required traveling. Both made a gym membership and a home gym were impractical and impossible. So, BW-based strength training was my best chance at getting bigger and stronger.
The truth about strength training is that skeletal muscle doesn't only get bigger and stronger by moving heavy weights. It gets stronger by inducing short (15-60 seconds) durations of intense movements. This can be accomplished in many other ways other than just by lifting weights. That's easy enough to understand. Weights just happen to be the most commonly-used and well-known means of obtaining a such movements.
What really makes your muscles grow is the food that you eat. Most of us who've bought supplements find out a few things quickly: they're expensive and often times, they don't work (Most supplement models built their physiques with steroids, not the supplement that they're shilling for). Unfortunately, gaining mass with diet is the holy grail that's been largely forgotten by a lot of people who strength train.
I think that's why my blog has been such a hit. My mass-gaining experiment back in 2007 seemed to have attracted the bulk of the attention to my blog. At the beginning of my goal, I weighed in at 157 lbs. The goal was 180 lbs. 2007 was a long, stressful year but I managed to get up, and over 180 lbs... twice. After honeymooning in South America, I got severely ill with diarreha and lost 14 lbs. So, I gained it back again, going as high as 190 lbs. These days, I'm perfectly happy at a 170-175 lbs.
Anyway, I decided to create this page so I could post links to the posts I did on mass-gaining with BW and diet only. Here are the links...
How I'm gaining Some Weight, June 4, 2007
Changing Your Body, February 19, 2008
More on Gaining Mass, August 13, 2008
Should we Try To Get Bigger, September 20, 2008
Refresher on Gaining Muscle Mass with Bodyweight, March 31, 2009
Anabolic Almonds? February 13, 2010
Blast from the Past: My Mass-Gaining Experiment, June 24, 2010